Friday, June 29, 2012


Okay, I am too excited about this to wait to post about it.  My sweet friend Tabitha just had a baby and I was inspired by this from Pinterest...
 I love crafting and when I saw this and thought it was super cute, I thought I can totally do that!
So I printed out a map from Google of the area where the hospital my friend gave birth is for the map part.  I used a 12x12 canvass from Michaels and got to modpodging!  I used craft paper and decoupage to attach all of the paper and then stamped/drew on the lettering.  I then attached a ribbon to the wooden frame to make a cute hanger.  I hope Tabitha and her husband love it and are able to hang it in their baby's room!


So I am not a runner....or at least not a great one, or a good one even.  I do run, so I guess I am technically a runner, but I definitely don't have a 26.2 or a 13.1 or even a 5k (yet) sticker on my car.  PS. do they even make stickers for 5k's?  Anyway, I have been motivated by a few things to train for a 5k.
Thing 1:
EVERYONE on my facebook seems to be running...a TON...and it makes me feel like a slacker.  Haha I know that sounds really lame and very much like I would jump off of a bridge if my facebook friends did, but I can assure you, that even when I was in middle school in Manteo and everyone was literally jumping off of the downtown bridge into the sound, I wasn't (thanks Mom...)  So I am not a big follower, but I think working out is different.  If other people doing something great, like getting in shape, is gonna guilt me into doing it to, why the heck not?  So, I am....trying....

Thing 2:
I feel like crud.  When Jordan proposed in 2010 I promised myself I was NOT going to be that girl who is the chubby bride.  But I was...
I still felt beautiful on my wedding day, because NOTHING could take away my joy about marrying the man God made for me.  Looking back, I wish I had done better...but I was working 12 hour shifts on night shift as a police officer, planning and DYI-ing my whole wedding myself (with my mom of course), and buying a house with my wonderful lets just put it lightly...I was a little stressed ;)  Working out for me has not usually been a stress reliever.  In fact, it sometimes worries me more than not working out. When I was a police officer, we all had to run the POPAT every 6 months to keep our jobs.  The POPAT, in short terms consists of 200 yrds of running, 40 push ups, 40 sit ups, 6 flights of stairs, 2 drags of a 150 lb person, breaking through a 50 lb door, and crawling through a 50ft culvert.  In less than 7 minutes and 20 seconds.  Now to some people, that is no biggie.  To a lot of cops actually...but to a girl like me....who has struggled with her weight since the 5th grade and hasn't ever been great at athletics, its really hard.  This requirement made me crazy with stress at work, and every time I went to the gym or for a jog, I thought about my short comings and how I wasn't good enough to pass POPAT with ease.  I don't have to do POPAT anymore (ever again hopefully), so I stopped working out altogether.  I gained a little more weight (a combo of happily married and lazy bum) and I am really down about it.  I want to be a good wife and look good for my hubby, and be healthy so we can live a long life together.  Right now though, I feel like I am totally out of shape and icky.

Thing 3:
I have ALWAYS been busty, since the 6th grade when I started at a B cup and went up a cup size every year until high school...then I plateaued, but in college, well lets just say they are big.  I feel pretty restricted by my chest in a lot of ways.  I can't wear cute little sundresses or shirts with cool backs because my bras will show, I cant buy cheap bathing suits because two triangles and some string is a friggin joke...I have to go way up in sizes in dresses to get one to fit, and sometimes I leave the store in tears because I feel so bad, and my bras are crazy expensive and hard to find.  I have used them as an excuse/crutch from working out for a long time.  I've said I cant run because my boobs are too big and its just too hard.  Well I am better than that, its not too hard and I CAN do it if i try.  When I was in the police academy, I had to run everyday.  I hated it, but I got through it because I had to.  Now I don't have to, but I need to.

SO in light of all of these, I have encouraged a bunch of friends & my hubby to sign up with me and we are going to run The Color Run in Charlotte in November!!  I've been using the 5k runner app on my phone and am on week 2.  I want this, I need this, and I will NOT give up this time!

We are raising money for Habitat for Humanity so if anyone wants to help out feel free!

lets get it started

Hello Internet!
First, let me start by saying that I have been putting off starting a blog, although I have wanted to for a while, but I am jumping in head first now!  My sweet supportive husband Jordan has encouraged me to use my time to write a blog so here goes...

I love to cook, bake, and craft, so I am sure that I will be posting a lot of those things.  I am a former police officer, so that will definitely show up as well.  I looooooved being a law enforcement officer and I miss a lot of things about my career, but I am pursuing law school now to become a lawyer...gulp...and I am waiting for my LSAT scores now...they should be out in about a week.  AH that is scary.  My college GPA leaves quite a bit to be desired so a lot is riding on this.  Luckily, I know God has a plan and I really felt called to leave my job as a cop and go after something more.  I just finished taking a class at NC State, my Alma Mater (GO PACK), and got an A ;) so that is a good start.  I am nervous about my future, but I thank God that I have a great husband, family, and friends to support me during my transition.

A lot of my friends know how much I love to bake, so I will start by sharing one of my cupcake recipes with you all.  Now, I must go on record and say that I rarely, in fact only once, make up my own recipes so I will try to give credit where credit is due, but I hope you can enjoy this recipe if you try it.

Reese's Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes with mini Reese's and Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Buttercream

For the Cake I use the Hershey's "Perfectly Chocolate" Chocolate Cake recipe

2 cups          Granulated Sugar
1 3/4 cups    All Purpose Flour
3/4 cup        Hershey's Cocoa
1 1/2 tsp      Baking Powder
1 1/2 tsp      Baking Soda
1 tsp            Salt
2                  Eggs
1 cup           Milk (it doesn't specify whole, and I have used skim and 2%, both work fine)
1/2 cup        Vegetable Oil
2 tsp            Vanilla Extract
1 cup           Boiling Water (I use my Keurig so it isn't quite boiling, but its hot, works great)

optional:  Mini Reese's Cups

Preheat to 350 degrees F.  Line cupcake tin with cupcake papers.  Combine dry ingredients (the first 6) in a large bowl.  Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla.  Beat on Medium speed for 2 minutes.  Add water and mix just until combined.  The batter is thin but I promise it works out!  Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way full.  Place a mini Reese's cup in the middle of each cupcake.  This recipe makes 24 cupcakes!  Although I usually end up with 23 somehow... Anyway, bake for 22-25 minutes

Recipes usually say that to make sure cupcakes a done, stick a toothpick in & see if it comes out clean, but with these delights, you're going to stab your Reese's cup if you do that so just trust the time and pat the top for firmness to make sure they are done.

Once you remove the cupcake tins from the oven, place them on a wire rack to cool.

Wait until they are completely cool to ice them.

I use Georgetown Cupcakes' recipe for the base of almost all of my butter cream.  It is delicious plain, but you can add ANYTHING to it to customize.  I also always double the recipe so I will write it doubled.

Cream Cheese Butter Cream Base Icing

8 tbsp (1stick)  Butter at room temperature*
12 oz      Cream Cheese
6-8 c      Confectioners Sugar
1/2 tsp    Vanilla Extract

Mix all ingredients well until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes total).
* I usually jump the gun on the butter and get to excited about baking to wait the amount of time necessary to get it to room temp.  I usually pop a stick in the microwave for about 15 seconds or until you can press your finger in it and leave a dent, but it's not melted.  I have also accidentally left it in for too long and melted the stick, if this happens to you, pop it in the fridge for bit until it hardens back up, no big deal :)

OKAY to make this frosting yummy and Peanut Buttery, I added two spoonfuls of PB at a time, and blended between, until it tasted right.  You can't mess this icing up,  I've done mocha icing with coffee and chocolate, lemon icing with zest & lemon juice, cookies and cream by adding crushed Oreos...etc etc.  Be creative!

I like to pipe my icing, to make it look professional.  Afterward I added a mini Reese's cup to the top of each cupcake!
This batch was for a birthday, so I added some blue food coloring to my leftover icing and piped tiny polka dots onto them too.