Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Sometimes & Always

Sometimes I forget my camera's battery when I go on vacation. {Only me, only me}. 

Always I am thankful for Instagram. Thanks to Instagram, my San Francisco trip was fully documented. 


Sometimes I think it's unfair when an Olympic athlete also is amazingly gorgeous. You're not supposed to have it all, right? 

Always I'm okay with it. After all, eye candy makes the Olympics way more fun. Especially when it looks like this:


Sometimes I tell myself that starting tomorrow, I'll start eating healthier. 

Always I don't. {But I will tomorrow}.

Avo-Hummus Bagel... YUM!

Sometimes I feel like I may be ready for a change of scenery. 

Always I am thankful to call beautiful Santa Barbara home. And I'll appreciate it for as much longer as God wants me here. 



Monday, July 30, 2012

Buttermilk Spice Muffins


Ingredients:

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
3 large eggs
2 cups flour
1/2 cup wheat flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cup buttermilk

Topping:
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a muffin tin (or line with paper cups). In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until well mixed. 

2. In another bowl, whisk together flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Add half of the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Then mix in the buttermilk. Add the final amount of the flour mixture, beating just until combined. 

3. Mix topping ingredients together in a separate bowl. 

4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling each cup about 3/4 full. Sprinkle the top with topping mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes. 


These muffins were so easy, and got great reviews with the coworkers. For more healthy muffin recipes, go here {I know I will be!}.

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! I can't wait to recap mine, which was spent surprising this girl in San Fran:



Such a good weekend, but more on that later! Go have yourself a wonderful Monday!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Friends

Before I start this post, today is a very special day. 

It's my Blogiversary! Sweet Home SB is officially 1 year old. 

I want to say a big thank you to everyone who might stumble upon this post today. If you're a reader, thank you for taking the time to visit this little space. There are a handful of you that I feel as though I've really formed some friendships with over the past year. I hope that number grows. I hope that you comment to make yourself known, but if not, say hi now! I would love to get to know all of you out there in Blogland. 

And if you're a Blogger that I'm following {or secretly stalking, I'm sure there's a few} thank you for taking the time to post your words and thoughts on this here inter-web. Thank you for sharing your ups, and your downs. For sharing stories that make me laugh out loud in my cubicle {no, I never read at work}. And for sharing your insecurities that tell me that I'm not the only one who's not perfect. 

Shocking, I know. 

This past year has flown by, and I am so glad that I had this space to document it. I started this blog as a new grad, making my way into the working world. {Find my first post here}

What have I learned in the last year? I've learned that I will always be happy as long as I have one thing:

friends.

You know the best part about that? This year, I really learned that I can make friends where ever I go. 

It might sound optimistic, and I'm sure it won't always be as easy as it is now {living in Santa Barbara where this place is full of people my age}. But really, after this year out of college, I am confident that when the time comes to leave this beautiful place, I will be just fine. 

Growing up, you are thrown into school where you are almost forced to meet tons of people your age. You talk in your classes, in between classes, do homework together. And somewhere  during that time, you form some real friendships. You start hanging out outside of school. And voila! You have yourself friends. It's a magical thing. 

And then college comes, and BAM, you get to live with these friends. You get to navigate through life for your first time "on your own." You can hang out as late as you want, because there's no one calling you telling you to come home. You get to stay up late studying for a test, because you spent the last few months not studying for said test. 

You form friendships. 

And then you graduate, and there's no longer a giant pool of people you're age to pick from. There will never again be that first day of school, where everyone is in the same boat, searching for somewhere to fit in. 

It doesn't appear as easy to "make friends." Something that might not have taken effort before, now does. 

So what do you do? 

You know that saying, you have to be a friend to have a friend? Or, something like that. I've learned that that statement is so true.  

In order to make connections, form relationships, you have to put yourself out there. It's easy to think hey, I'm talking to this girl in a gym locker room. I'll never see her again. But what if that thought is completely off, what if this girl could become your friend? 

It might sound silly, or trivial, but I want to write it down for me. I want to write it down to remind myself, that putting yourself out there can pay off. Wearing a smile, being friendly and asking questions can be all that it takes to start a friendship. 

Friends have always been important to me, but this year further taught me how happy my friendships make me. And learning that I can make friends in all sorts of social settings has given me confidence to know that no matter where this life takes me, I'll be one happy girl. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

What We Had For Dinner


Ingredients:

Cooking spray
4 ounces sausage
1 1/2 cups frozen corn
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 large egg
4 large egg whites
1/2 cup reduced-fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


Directions:

1. Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add sausage; saute 4 minutes or until browned. Stir in corn and, if desired, red pepper; reduce heat to medium-low.

2. Combine egg and egg whites in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Drizzle evenly over sausage mixture. Cover and cook 8 minutes or until almost set. Remove pan from heat; sprinkle evenly with cheese and 1 1/2 tablespoons cilantro. Cover and let stand 2 minutes.

3. Sprinkle with 1 1/2 tablespoons cilantro. Cut into 4 wedges. 

Per Serving (makes 4):

174 Calories
6g Fat
13.8g Protein
14.5g Carbohydrate
1.6g Fiber
76mg Cholesterol
0.6mg Iron
472 mg Sodium
121 mg Calcium


I served mine with potatoes, for a breakfast for dinner feel taste. I've made a few frittatas in my day (literally a few, as in two others) and this was definitely a favorite. The sausage adds a lot of flavor. 

Big fan!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Life is Good

Yupp, that's about it. Life is good. 

People have told me that college is the best time in life. And of course I loved college. Living on my own for the first time, surrounded by people my own age, no rules, no curfew? 



Yeah, it was awful


No but really, college was amazingggg. It was all I could have asked for. I learned so much about myself, and about life. While having so. much. fun. It was the best. 

But you know what?

It's gotten better. 


And for that, I am thankful. 

That's all for today folks. Life is good great. Let's go live it, shall we?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Why Hello There Monday

It's almost midnight, and I literally just got home from San Diego. 

It was a great weekend with family and friends. 

And I took basically no pictures. 

I know, I've been sucking at that lately. I'll start documenting again asap.

A few random things: 

1. Loving this book:


I just got to a really good part in the plot, so it's really freaking difficult to put the book down. If it was possible to read and drive at the same time, I would have done it. 

2. What We Had For Dinner post coming this week. It's been way too long, if I do say so myself. 

3. Ready or not, here comes an Instagram dump:

Can't wait for this game!

One of the only pics from this weekend.

Cereal bar for dinner... YUM.

One of my absolute favorite quotes.

Aaand pretty sure that's all I have for today. 

How was your weekend?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Liebster Blog Award!

The wonderful Mosby from The Life of a Milligan College Student awarded me the Liebster Blog Award!

I was actually given this award by Miss Daisy from Lovely Memories a few months ago, so check out the blogs that I gave this award to here.

Even though I already gave out the Liebster, I'm still going to answer Mosby's questions. Because that's my favorite part! So here we go:

1. What is one quote that you live your life by?


I am a firm, firm believer in the fact that everything happens for a reason. 

2. What is your biggest fear, and why?

Hmm, good question. If I am being 100% honest, my biggest fear is probably that I won't ever get married. 

I am perfectly fine with waiting 5, heck even 10 more years if I have to. I am loving this time that I have being single {possible post to come on that soon} and am in no rush to get married in the near future. I want to wait for the right person, and do it right the first time. 

But, in all honesty, it is a legitimate fear of mine. Good thing I can trust that the Lord has a perfect plan for me, with or without a husband is up to Him. 

3. If you could pick one color to be your personal color, what would it be?

Purple has always been my favorite color, so I think I'll stick with that. Girly, but with a bit of edge. Perfect.

4. What is your favorite thing to do to relax?

Hit the gym to hop on an elliptical and read a good book. Already mentioned that once this week, but it definitely is my favorite way to spend my free time these days.

5. Mountains or the beach?

The beach, definitely. Born and raised in Cali, so hands down a beach girl {although the mountains are cool too}.


6. Do you prefer to go to the mall or online shop?

I prefer to go to the mall, I like to try things on. But I have gotten more into online shopping lately,  this Vegas dress was a recent {ish} purchase:


7. What was the first blog you started reading?

Also mentioned this earlier this week, but the first blog I started reading was my friend Alycia's blog, Crowley Party.

8. What do you do for a living?

I am a Client Support Specialist at a Property Management Software company. I talked a little bit more about that when I made my first Vlog!

9. Do you like to cook? If so, what is your favorite thing to cook?

YES! I love to cook {find my favorite recipes here.} When it comes to cooking? I'll pretty much cook anything {but I prefer quick recipes!}. When it comes to eating? Well, I'll pretty much eat anything too. But my favorite is definitely Mexican!

10. Morning person or night person?

I would say both, but probably more of a morning person. I just can't seem to sleep in anymore, and can't seem to stay awake much past 10. 

You can say it, I'm an old lady.

11. Who is your best friend, and why?

I honestly can't answer this question, I've been so blessed with many amazing best friends. 

BUT, it just so happens to be one of their birthdays today!

So I'll take this opportunity to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my amazing, wonderful, generous, gorgeous and LONG TIME best friend, COLLEEN!



Funny story, after we took this picture, we realize we actually met in 1996, not 1997.

Whoops.

Basically, we've been best friends for a looong time. 

And I will be celebrating with her tonight, because I am on my way home to San Diego!!

HAPPY FRIDAY LOVERS.

XO


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Humpday Randoms

1. Listen to this song:


I've been listening to it on repeat. Allll morning. 

I've already had a coworker skype me about my dance moves. 

2. I get to teach a training class today, so business attire it is:


And yes, that is a bathroom picture for you. 

You love it, I know. 

3. You're almost to your weekend. 

But you probably already knew that, huh?

4. Go congratulate her

Sooo excited for them :)

Have yourself a Happy Humpday!

XO

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Blogger 411 Link Up!

Time for a good link up!

I'm so excited to be linking up with Becky, over at From Mrs. to Mama. I've picked some of my fav questions to answer, so here we go:

How long have you been blogging? And what got you started on blogging? Has your blog changed?

Kind of crazy, but I've been blogging for almost exactly 1 year. It does not feel that long at all. I started reading blogs when I started following my friend Alycia over at Crowley Party. Alycia and I worked together way back in the day, and I had so much fun keep up with her via her blog. As I started following other blogs {I was definitely that follower that doesn't officially follow, but checks in every day}, I finally decided I wanted to start one of my own. 

When my best friend Kacey started a blog of her adventures in Spain, I decided to take the leap and start blogging about my post-college life in Santa Barbara. The theme of my blog hasn't exactly changed, but I will say that I think it took me a while to develop my writing voice. And I think that's probably still a work in progress. 

 Did you go to college? If so where, and what did you study? 

I am proud to say that I'm a Gaucho, or a UCSB Alum. 


I studied Math and Economics. It was the perfect major for me, and fortunately, there was a combined major at UCSB. {No double majoring for me!}

What is your drink of choice; wine, beer or liquor. Or Water, Soda, Tea?

This one definitely varies with my mood, but it's always either wine or beer. Right now, I would say one of my favorite drinks is hard cider {Yummm}. When I first started college, I hated both wine and beer. I was one of those No thanks, I don't drink beer girls. 

Ha, that changed quick. 

Non-alcoholic wise, definitely a water girl. I'll get legit cravings for a cold water bottle. Love me some ice-cold water. 

What is something you enjoy to do when you have me time?

My favorite way to spend me time right now is on the elliptical, with a good book. It's not the most intense work out, but I get to do two things that I enjoy at the same time: get some exercise, and catch up on some reading. 

Plus, I swear the time goes by so much faster. I feel like I could stay on that thing for hours. Win.

Share with us an embarrassing moment of your past? Or present.

I have way too many embarrassing moments to choose from, but the one that takes the cake would probably be when I peed my pants at work. 

Yupp, you read that right. I worked at a child care center, and once another girl and I were tag teaming a diaper change. The kid started peeing and squirming everywhere, and so the two of us started laughing. Hard. 

Pretty sure I already had to go to the bathroom, and it became apparent pretty quickly that this laughing thing wasn't going to work out for me. So I made a run for it. 

I didn't make it. 

I'd like to say I covered it up well with the go-to lady excuse of I got my period, but no. I wasn't that quick on my feet. 

The good news? I got to go home early. {Next time you want to leave early, just pee your pants. All the cool kids do it.}

The bad news? Well, it took a looong time for another story to top mine. {I'm not sure one has yet.}

Oh, and I'd like to say this is the only time this has happened to me. 

It's not. I'm kind of known for it. I'm glad I let that out in the open. I feel like we just got a whole lot closer. 

What are the jobs that you had in high school/college/the early years?

Well, now you know that I worked at a child care center in high school:


I worked here when I came home to visit from college too, and this is where I met Alycia!

My college job was at Kmart. 
I was a supervisor. I know you're really, really jealous right now. 

Show us a picture from high school or college. 

Can I do both? Okay, cool.

High school:

Senior year

The Kacey that I mentioned earlier, she's up there in the middle. So glad that I am still close with all of these people, love them so much.

College:

Summer between Junior and Senior year

This was our elevator pic {that took 3 attempts} from our first post 21 Vegas trip. 

Pretty sure we've tried to recreate this multiple times. 

Pretty sure we have yet to succeed. 

If you could travel anywhere in the world, all expenses paid, where would you go? 

Italy. Hands down. 

Show us the most current picture of you or you and your family.


Me, my brother and sister at Mike's graduation lunch. 2 down, Mom and Dad, 1 to go. 

Where do you see your life 5 years from now? 

I almost didn't answer this one, because it's kind of a tough one. I think the next 5 years are going to be big ones, and I'm so excited for them. 

Ideal situation? I would love to meet my husband in the next 5 years, and hopefully move closer to my family {San Diego's been calling me back for a while now}.

But, in all honesty, I know that where ever I am, I will be happy with good friends and a good church. 

And maybe some wine. But just a few glasses. 

XO

The Story of a Book

If you've checked out my Books page recently, you might have seen that this is the book I most recently read:


I mentioned here that since I've really gotten into reading this year, religious books have seemingly been just finding me. Seriously, I have yet to pay for any of the now 5 religious books that I have. 

Although winning a signed copy of Britt Merrick's Godspeed on Twitter was pretty cool, I'd say this story takes the cake. 

Backtrack a few months with me, to this trip. I flew to and from Sacramento, and knowing I'd be driving back from LA right after my flight home on Sunday, I determined a nap to be entirely necessary {Not much sleep was had during the weekend, and I don't sleep well on planes}.

I was on Heather's couch, trying to take a nap, and distinctly remember praying to God. 

I'll be honest, we went out the night before and I was just feeling a bit distant from Him. I prayed, asking that He reveal Himself to me. I hear so many radical stories of people witnessing Christ in their lives, and I wanted to truly feel His presence. 

I am not sure why I chose this moment for that prayer, but I did. And I wasn't sure if I felt any intense response in that moment, but I did have a sense of peace while relaxing before my flight. 

On the flight, I pulled out my Bible. A little over halfway through the flight, the woman behind me tapped me on the shoulder. 

Do you mind if I ask what you're reading? She asked. 

The Bible. I responded. 

I thought so. 

The smile on her face revealed how excited she was to embark on our conversation that took up the remainder of the flight. I'm sure I had the same smile on my face, as well. 

I love talking about Christ. I still have trouble knowing when the right time is to bring Him into conversation, and am constantly learning how to have confidence when discussing my faith. So when I have the chance to talk to another believer, I am always excited to have the chance to relate with another person on how amazing our Savior is. 

Her name was Peggy, and she truly radiated with her love of Christ. She was so happy to see that I was studying the Bible, and wanted to share with me a small piece of her testimony with the time that we had. 

She told me the story of how her husband and son survived a plan crash by the grace of God {totally normal, right?}.

I can truly say that I was blessed by our conversation, and will always be inspired by her boldness in sparking a conversation about Christ with a complete stranger. 

But, it didn't end there. Somehow, it came up that I was single, and hoping to eventually find a Christ centered relationship like the one shared between her and her husband. Peggy was so excited to recommend to me the book called Heart's Desire, and made sure to get my address so that she could mail me a signed copy that she had at home. 

We said our goodbyes, both assuring that we would be praying for one another. And a few weeks later, a package arrived at my doorstep. 



The signed book, a personalized note and a few other goodies were all inside an adorable package {that I failed to take a picture of, bad Blogger}.

All from a random encounter on a plane. 

God is so, so good. 

Hope you had yourself a wonderful weekend!

XO

Friday, July 13, 2012

It's Friiiiiiday, Friiiiday!

Yeah, you know what song I'm talking about. 

Apparently one of the most hated songs ever.

But you know what? I don't care. I'll blast that jam every single Friday. 

Actually, I do not. But I do love the song. 

You know, I wasn't gonna post today. {Guess I'm still being a bad blogger} But I was sick of the period post being at the top of my blog. 

I didn't want people stumbling upon my page and going woahhh, nice introduction Amy. Glad to know you have bodily issues. 

Thanks to everyone who commented saying they're glad I'm not broken anymore. Me too, guys! Me too!

I'll leave you with my memory verse for this week. Stumbled upon this on a random verse generating website, and had no idea that it inspired the name of one of my favorite bands (Building 429).

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. 

Ephesians 4:29

This verse really helped me this week. Anytime I got the urge to complain, or make a snarky remark {which never happens to me, ever} I would turn and look at this verse. 

Then I'd just go on a run, and bitch in my head instead. 

The negative thoughts went away eventually, and hopefully some pounds will too!

Happy Friday!

XO