Sister

So much creation!

I think the “theme” of my life lately is creation. I feel like I have 571 million pictures to share, but I’m going to stick with my creation theme, and share six recent creations!

1. Jimmy and I attended Fort Ligonier Days on October 12th, and I was “on assignment” for the newspaper, so I created a news report on the fun festival.

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2. Jimmy created this outdoor fire pit as a birthday gift for my brother. He has got some serious welding skills.

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3. Knowing my brothers affinity for spicy sauces, I created some jalapeno sauce for his birthday.

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4. Hannah, Jimmy, and I created a mess trying to carve pumpkins. I’m the only one out of the three of us that actually carved a pumpkin! They both didn’t know what to carve, so they didn’t carve anything, haha. By the way, my carving is supposed to be a flower…

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5. My mom and I created fall wreaths together! I might post more about this another time, but it was so much fun. We each made a wreath so she can have one for our house, and I can have one for my house next year.

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6. While buying wreath supplies at the craft store, I picked up a sketchbook, and created some silly drawings instead of doing homework. Drawing turned out to be way more fun than doing homework!

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What have you created lately?

Party Snacks

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My mom hosted a 31 party at our house on Saturday, and I thought it would be fun to share some pictures of the food we made for our guests! 

I was in charge of the desserts (surprise.. ha) and Hannah and my mom made the appetizers.

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I made:
-Mini pumpkin cupcakes with buttercream frosting
-Candied walnuts
-Fall snack mix

Hannah and my mom made:
-Fruit salad
-Veggie platter with dip
-Sausage dip (this was a hit and has only three ingredients!)
-7 layer dip

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Mini pumpkin cupcakes with buttercream frosting

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Candied walnuts

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Spending time baking and cooking with my mom and sister was a lot of fun. I love them so much. The party itself was a blast, too. Our house was filled with women smiling, talking, and laughing. I enjoyed hanging out with friends and just having a nice time.  It reminded me not to take life too seriously–something I tend to do ;)

What’s your favorite party snack?

Two screen shots + some pictures

First of all, thank you to everyone who commented (and emailed/Facebooked/text messgaed) me about my last post.

Wow. I didn’t expect to receive so much support and advice. I love the blogging community and the amazing friendships I’ve made. I will definitely keep everyone updated on my situation and how I’m handling things!

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Two screenshots

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The temperature was 39° when I woke up the other day, and I continued to be crabby about the chilly weather by complaining to Jimmy. I better suck it up because I lived through 8° weather in January!

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I’ve been listening to this song way too much.

Some pictures

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Hannah stole my phone the other day and took some selfies. Now they are on the internet. Love you, Hannah ;)

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I’m really sorry, but I think Crocs are my favorite shoes. I even wear them out in public.

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Pittsburgh is pretty awesome.

Did you know it’s officially fall? Yeah, I bet you already knew that.

Here are some of my favorite fall recipes:
Butternut squash muffins–Don’t knock ‘em till you try ‘em!
Pumpkin muffins
Pumpkin smoothie
Pumpkin spice pancakes
Butternut squash soup–it only has five ingredients!
Mom’s chili
Rosemary Chicken
Sweet potato-lentil stew
Vegan oatmeal cookies

What’s your favorite fall recipe? Please share!

Gladiators

Hannah, Kim, and I competed in Pittsburgh’s Gladiator Rock’n Run 5k on Saturday. We got so muddy and beat up! Here are some pictures…

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Cinder block burpees. Not real life.

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Rope and wall climbing and tire lunges. Also not real life.

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We had to carry a huge log!

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Crawling through mud under barbed wire. I was so nervous I was going to rip my shirt or pants!

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Fire jumping at the finish!

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My thoughts on the race:
-I thought I broke my elbow at one point. I’m not even exaggerating. We went down a huge slip ‘n slide, and I hit my elbow on a rock and was in tears. I have a huge bruise on the inside of my elbow and I’m still babying it.
-We had a lot of fun, and my cheeks hurt from laughing so much!
-Hannah and I keep finding bruises all over our legs and arms because the course was so rough!
-Just like MuckFest in May, I didn’t want to do this race, but I’m really glad I did.

Hannah and cookies

Hannah recently entered a local teen fashion contest. The contest was for teen girls to show how to dress up a basic outfit in an inexpensive way while also providing shopping tips.

She asked me to take her pictures, and of course I said yes. I love being behind the lens of my camera. I’m not sure when Hannah will find out who won, but I do want to share the photos she submitted!

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Her “plain” outfit.

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Her fully accessorized outfit!

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Very schnazzy.

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Love her. So much.

Cookies

This summer has been the summer of zucchini for my garden. The zucchini grew and grew like crazy. I think I still have some to pick.

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I have made countless loaves of zucchini bread. I’ve tried every variation, too–chocolate chip, nut and raisin, banana and Nutella. You get the point.

I was staring at a zucchini laying on my dining room table a few days ago. I was in the mood to bake (as usual), but didn’t want to make another loaf of zucchini bread. So I made cookies.

You would think I’d be tired of cookies by now. Nope. Definitely not.

Here is a lovely recipe for milk chocolate chip zucchini cookies.

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These cookies are different from “regular” chocolate chip cookies for two reasons. They have milk chocolate chips and they’re super soft. I think the softness comes from the moisture in the grated zucchini.

If you enjoy soft, chewy cookies, definitely try out the recipe and let me know what you think!

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1. This is Brandy, Hannah’s new cocker spaniel puppy! Brandy was a surprise gift for Hannah’s 15th birthday.

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2. Zucchini brownies. With a chocolate glaze. Can’t go wrong with a chocolate glaze!

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3. My brother and sister-in-law know me so well. They brought me home some awesome gifts from the Dominican Republic. I’ve already used almost all of the honey!

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4. Zucchini + banana + Nutella bread. Yes.

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5. Have I ever mentioned that I adore my sister? I do. I love her so much.

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6. This skirt = so comfy.

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7. I’ve been making pickles like crazy lately! So far, I’ve made a sweet ginger batch, and a spicy banana pepper and red pepper flavored batch. I definitely prefer the sweeter flavored pickles.

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8. I received this candle as a gift from someone at my church. It smells amazing and I’m kind of depressed that it’s a limited edition candle.

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9. Hey. It’s Felix.

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10. Ear plugs. Random, right?! Well, I live in a split-level house with 3 family members and four pets. Everyone in my family is on a different sleep schedule and sometimes it can get loud at night. So, I bought ear plugs and they work really, really well. Now my parent’s are afraid I’ll sleep through a fire alarm or tornado.

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11. I love this boy.

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12. Okay, one more photo of Brandy. She’s just too cute!

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