Getting to This Point

Thursday morning… November 29, 2018, a day I never figured would happen. It was an uphill struggle the whole way. I had a meltdown a few times along the way. We all did. It was frustrating as hell (pardon my language). If you’ve ever thought about buying a foreclosure house, my thought is… DON’T. Okay, maybe that’s being a bit melodramatic.

I was told if it was worth it, keep fighting. There were days I questioned my sanity and wondered why I thought it was worth it.

With all the buy/flip shows on HGTV and DIY Network, everyone seems to want to buy houses and flip them these days. That wasn’t our goal… for the most part anyway.

Remember back to September 2016, we sold our house. In fact, we moved out on our Anniversary weekend. That weekend felt like a slap in my face. These last few years haven’t gone anything like I thought they would. I can guarantee they aren’t anything like 25-year-old Nicole thought they’d be. Maybe that’s the fun in life… maybe not. I’m not really sure. But… needless to say, we sold our house and moved back in with my parents. That was just supposed to be a stepping stone to the next thing. (more…)

Christmas Tree 2018 (And a Surprise)

Finally, the tree went up at our house over the weekend. I’ve been pretty much chomping at the bit (horse term) to get that tree up. I would like to say it went up without any hitches, but it didn’t… NOT. AT. ALL. In fact, I think the term hitches is a nice way of saying how things went on Saturday when we put the tree up. Sad day! Part of me wants to jot those memories down and part of me wants to forget it ever happened. No use in dwelling on the past, right? Let’s just say, Christmas is my favorite holiday (followed so close by Thanksgiving and all of the rest of the holidays) and I used the phrase, I Hate Christmas. Sadly, I try to teach Abug not to say hate. It’s something I try to instill in Abug, don’t hate. Yet I was so frustrated I kept saying HATE. Hypocrite! (that was directed at me, not you :))

The Tree

A few years ago we bought this tree at Lowe’s on sale after Christmas. Best purchase we’ve ever made when it comes to Christmas trees. It goes together so nicely and yeah, I love this tree. Plus, I’m a white light girl and hubby is a colored light guy… This tree flashes back and forth between white lights and colored lights. Best of both worlds!

My friend Harriett told me I needed to make a tree skirt for my tree, but it was too late to start it when she suggested that… so next year. I’m holding you to that Harriett! So Abug decided she was going to put the tree skirt on the tree… (more…)

Thanksgiving 2018

And just like that, Thanksgiving is over.  I saw a meme the other day that I actually saw a year ago… something about spending 10 hours cooking for it to be gone in 30 minutes and then spending 5 hours cleaning up or something. haha. But that’s kind of the fun in Thanksgiving!

It’s also funny how short weeks feel the longest sometimes. Thanksgiving is always the 3rd Thursday of November. And that week, every year feels so long! Probably because of the anticipation of what is to come that week. That’s what I’m going with anyway!

This year, we had plans to leave Tuesday after Abug got out of school to head to my aunt and uncle’s house in Oklahoma. I love when we get to go see them. I have a pretty small family as is, so when we don’t get to see each other on holidays it makes it feel so weird. Weird is the only word I can see to describe it. My family did get bigger when I married my husband, but still… unfortunately they don’t care for me very much so I’ve heard. I get blamed for things that are out of my control and that sucks. But my husband, he’s my rock. He loves me and that’s what matters!

Anyway, Tbug couldn’t come down with us because she had a dentist appointment on Wednesday. My parents weren’t able to come down until Wednesday night so they brought her with them. It was a big happy family!! (more…)

Tiramisu Birthday Cake with Chocolate Tiramisu Truffles

When my husband and I started dating, he was living in Kentucky or was it Tennessee? It was right on the border and he called it Tuckasee. Technically he lived in Clarksville, Kentucky. He was working at the army base Ft. Campbell.

Not long after we started dating, just a couple months, he decided to move home. If you’ve been around these parts you’ll know we went to high school together. I actually fall in that 18% of people who marry someone from their graduating class. So here we were, he moved home in October. My mom and I found tickets to see Dracula at the Ballet and we bought them. Turns out, we bought them for November 1st that year. Does anyone know what November 1st is? It’s my husband’s birthday. Yup, I missed my husband’s first birthday together.

Hey, he wasn’t here for mine… haha. Mine was in the middle of the week and he was back in Kentucky. My mom offered him her ticket but he refused. And now he hasn’t let me live down missing that birthday since. But this year he was traveling for work on his birthday. I’m here to tell you though… I didn’t forget his birthday. I made him a Tiramisu Birthday Cake with Homemade Tiramisu Truffles. THEN, I took it to dive club meeting and we all ate it and celebrated without him. I wasn’t going to get accused of forgetting his birthday, again.

 Tiramisu Cake with Homemade Chocolate Tiramisu Truffles

Chocolate Tiramisu Truffles

Here while back, we bought my little helper a hammer of her own. She has rules that it has to stay in mommy’s tool bag until she is told she can pull it out. Unfortunately, we got her the hammer and she hasn’t had a chance to use it… Bummer! It’s almost like giving a kid candy and saying don’t eat it. (more…)

Cinnamon Roll Birthday Cake

Guys, I truly believe this! My dad’s birthday is today. In all the world I couldn’t have asked for a better daddy! I know a lot of people say that, but gosh it’s true. I’m sitting here writing this while watching last night’s Dancing with the Stars which was a turning point in all their lives. I don’t know if the tears streaming down my face are because of my daddy or those stories… Truthfully it could be both. My daddy is the absolute best daddy a girl could have. I’ve always been a daddy’s girl. And I just want to wish my daddy the absolute best day he could possibly have.

So as most of you know… or maybe you don’t so I’ll tell you now… I’ve spent this year falling back in love with making cakes. Beautiful cakes. Cakes for every occasion I can. So of course, my dad’s birthday would be no different. I went through a lot of different recipes trying to find the absolute BEST recipe for my dad. That’s when I stumbled across a recipe for a Birthday Cinnamon Roll Cake. WHAT? I should inform you now that my dad loves cinnamon rolls so it’s perfect, right? (more…)

Courtyard by Marriott – Clarksville, TN

Do you remember that my husband was military? Army in fact. A long time ago. Long before I was in the picture, but kind of not really. I was in the picture in high school, then I was out, and now I’m back again. Okay, anyway, moving on.

When you’re in the army, you form a brotherhood. You get brothers and sisters who have your back and they have yours. Why? Because you guys are all joining together to do one thing, defend our country and our freedoms. My husband has a couple guys who have served that purpose for him. And two of them happen to be twins. Isn’t that fun? I can also mention that in the last 2 weeks I have seen both of them… and they both live in different places.

One has recently moved about an hour from us while the other still lives at the Army base in Oak Grove, Kentucky/Ft. Campbell. If you ask my husband, that area is called Tuckasee because you are on the Kentucky/Tennessee border. In fact, the army base is in both states, it just registers as Kentucky because that’s the side the post office is on.

Anyway, I might be getting a little off topic. It happens. A couple weeks ago we headed to Metropolis, Illinois to go SCUBA diving. One of my husband’s brothers is sick. He could use all the prayers he can get, trust me! But being in Metropolis, we were only 2 hours from seeing him if that… so we schemed with his wife behind his back to show up on his doorstep to see him.

In fact, I thought it would be fun to send him random text messages of his house to show we were there. The silly guy was playing WOW so he wasn’t paying attention to his phone very much and Krissy had to make him look.

Clarksville, Tennessee

There really isn’t anywhere to stay in Oak Grove, so we went across the line into Tennessee for a hotel. Tim’s exit is 89. There are 94 in Kentucky and then you cross over the line. We went to exit 4. (more…)

Mudslide Cake (It’s a Birthday Thang!)

Today is my Mother-in-Law’s birthday. Happy Birthday, Memaw. Yes, we all call her Memaw which confuses some people. There’s actually a little confusion that goes along with that.

  1. My mother-in-law (MIL) was 35 when she had my husband. She was an “older” mom just like my mom was. (My mom was 28 for her first and only). When we all call her Memaw, people sometimes confuse her for being my husband’s grandma. I’m not totally sure why because I don’t think that’s possible!
  2. We all call her Memaw so when people call her by her real name, they don’t know who we’re talking about.

This year, we’ve been attempting to get together with my husband’s family at least once a month. It hasn’t totally happened, but we’ve tried. We just get together, have dinner, and play games. I think we’ve missed a couple months, but at least we’re trying. Family is important.

Last month (August) we got together the last weekend of the month to celebrate Memaw’s birthday. I guess I (hubby and I really) forgot we had Tbug Labor Day weekend (note to self… every even year we have her :)), so we wanted to get together to celebrate Memaw’s birthday when she (Tbug) was around. We won’t be in town the next weekend we have Tbug, so it seemed like we’d celebrate early instead of late.

Now if there’s another thing I can tell you about my MIL, she loves a good Mudslide. So with my Cake excursions this year, I went in search of a good Mudslide recipe. When I didn’t find what I wanted, I set out to make my own. And that’s just what I did. I made a Mudslide Cake in honor of my MIL. (more…)

Kansas City: Where We Stayed, Where We Ate, What We Did

Wow, it’s been quite a while since we actually went to Kansas City, but still, it’s worth mentioning.

Last month we made a weekend trip, actually just an overnight trip to Kansas City. The goal was to go to the Farmer’s Market and get Jalapeños. I know that sounds funny, but hubby makes these things called candied jalapeños and the best place to get bulk jalapeños at a decent price is the City Market in Kansas City. Gosh, I love that place. The first time we went, I wound up buying 20 pounds of jalapeños. This time we only bought 15 pounds. haha. You still get just as many weird looks buying 5 pounds fewer jalapeños.

But, because we went, we decided to make it a weekend trip. This summer’s goal has been to Have Fun!

Where We Stayed

4600 Summit St. Kansas City, MO

We stayed at the Hampton Inn & Suites Kansas City Country Club Plaza. (more…)

Where to Stay: Double Tree by Hilton Downtown San Antonio

When we decided to go to San Antonio on Vacation, Hubby went to looking for a place to stay. In San Antonio, there are multiple options. Eventually, he settled on a Double Tree by Hilton Downtown San Antonio.

Double Tree by Hilton Downtown San Antonio

502 W Cesar E Chavez

San Antonio, TX 78207

Listening to Siri directions pronounce that street is hilarious! Now, remember, we were coming from the North. Oh. My. Gosh. We came off one Highway into another highway and immediately had to take an exit which caused us to have to cross 4 lanes of traffic almost at a diagonal. CRAZY! I’m glad hubby had to do it the first time, although I got my chance when we came back from Corpus Christi. More on that later.

4 Lanes of traffic at a diagonal during rush hour = stressful! Oy! (more…)

Magnolia Market at the Silos & In-N-Out Burger – Waco, TX

Hello, Monday morning. How was my weekend? Well… I just about broke my right middle finger last night. We had wicked weird weather that blew through. I was trying to open a door in a downpour while carrying the little one and my hand wouldn’t let go of the door handle. My silly hand is sort of swollen and still hurts this morning. Hello Monday.

But let’s focus on the fact that it has been a week since I was on vacation and I totally miss it. I love going on Vacation! This year we chose to go to San Antonio, Texas. We debated and hemmed and hawed quite a bit trying to decide where to go. Hubby really wanted to go to Sea World so our choices had to kind of involve cities that had a Sea World.

Last summer when we spent time down at my aunt and uncle’s house, they got my family hooked on watching Fixer Upper. Of course, the show that decided to go off the air this year in April. Sure… So we got a year of them + reruns. At that time, my aunt wanted us to go to Waco, but we just ran out of time. Truthfully, I had no idea who Chip and Joanna Gaines were so I was like, what’s in Waco? Well, now I know. 🙂

Since Waco is on the way to San Antonio, I asked hubby if we could stop by their market and hopefully eat at their restaurant. We figured being a Monday morning, pulling into the restaurant around 10:30 would work. Um… Hello. NO! The wait was 1 hour 45 minutes and there were NO parking spots. We decided to forgo the restaurant, but that didn’t stop us from going to Magnolia Market at the Silos.

Magnolia Market at the Silo’s

(more…)