Sweet Home Santa Barbara

Monday, April 30, 2012

I'm Baaack

Stagecoach was so. much. fun. 

But now I'm back to reality. And running off just a few hours of sleep. And have to be at work in 20 minutes. 

So recap tomorrow? Same time, same place. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

April Birchbox!

Round 3 of Birchbox! Ready, go:

1. Juice Beauty Oil-Free Moisturizer

2. amika Obliphica Nourishing Mask

3. Wonderstruck perfume, by Taylor Swift

4. dropps Laundry Detergent

5. Zoya TRUE Spring Collection

I definitely liked the variety in this month's box. The hair mask and the laundry detergent are unlike anything I've gotten in my other boxes, so I was excited to give these a shot. I love that Birchbox introduces me to new products, since I'm not very adventurous on my own (hopefully that changes soon!). Come back for my review later this month!

Happy Friday!

Oh wait, is it not Friday for everyone? Sorry, should have been more considerate there. 

I'll be leaving for Stagecoach tonight, and I could not be more excited. 

Have a wonderful weekend! 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Keep Praying for Daisy

Not too long ago, I wrote a post about Daisy. Many of you commented on that post saying that you would keep Daisy in your prayers, and I can't tell you how much that meant to me. 

If there's one thing that I've learned about the blogging community, it's that it truly is an amazing support system. I have read so many incredible stories from incredible women that inspire me on a daily basis. I had no idea how much I would gain from starting a blog, but to say that I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement. 

I think it's time to see what this little blog of mine can do. I created a button for Daisy that links to PrayForDaisy.com. I firmly believe that God has a plan for everything, and at the very least, I hope to draw attention to this amazing family. Their strength that comes from their faith in the Lord is truly inspiring, given the tragic circumstances that they are facing. 

Please feel free to grab the html code for the button down in the "Grab a Button" section of my page. Maybe this button will spread, and maybe it won't. But the more important thing is to spread Daisy's story, and to help her get what she needs. Prayer. 

 I look at this 7 year old and aspire to one day have half the strength that she does. 

May your strength match the length of your days!

Deuteronomy 22: 25

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tasty Tuesday!

I've got two recipes for today. I've been really wanting to post both of these, so here you go!

Breakfast Tacos


4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup chopped green or red bell pepper
Got a bag of frozen chopped peppers, and it worked wonderfully!
4 medium green onions, chopped (1/4 cup)
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup shredded pepper Jack cheese
6 taco shells
1 cup shredded lettuce
1 small avocado, pitted, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup chunky-style salsa


1. In small bowl, beat eggs, garlic salt and pepper thoroughly with fork or wire whisk. Stir in bell pepper and onions. 

2. In 8-inch skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Pour egg mixture into skillet. As mixture begins to set at bottom and side, gently lift cooked portions with spatula so that uncooked portions can flow to bottom. Avoid constant stirring. Cook 3 to 4 minutes or until eggs are thickened throughout but still moist. Gently stir in cheese.

3. Heat taco shells as directed on package. Place lettuce in shells. Spoon eggs onto lettuce. Top with avocado and salsa. 

I know the ingredients list might look a little long, but trust me, this is nice and easy! The tacos were seriously delicious, and only 230 calories a piece. Definitely a new favorite in my book.

Next up: Pan-seared Parmesan Scallops


16 large sea scallops
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon butter
Coarse ground black pepper
Chopped fresh chives


1. Pat scallops dry with paper towels. Place cheese in shallow dish or resealable food-storage plastic bag. Coat scallops with cheese. Discard any remaining cheese. 

2. Heat oil and butter in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook half of scallops at a time in oil 3 to 6 minutes, turning once, until golden brown on outside and white and opaque inside. Sprinkle with pepper and chives. 

I served the scallops with this on the side, and they went really well together! 4 scallops are only 170 calories, not too shabby!

{Pictures courtesy of Instagram}

Monday, April 23, 2012

Murder Mystery!

In order to celebrate this lovely lady's 25th birthday:

We had ourselves a Murder Mystery Party! Meet the cast:

It was a Hollywood themed party, and I must say that our house looked the part. 

The picture wall sure served it's purpose:

Carly did such a great job of organizing everything. Everyone's parts fit perfectly!

The night started with an announcement from the Director:

And then everyone had to mingle and accomplish certain tasks. AKA eat dinner, dessert and take more pictures. 

This was my first Murder Mystery Party, but I can definitely say that I'll be having more. It was a great ice breaker for people who didn't already know each other, and made having dinner/drinks a lot more social than normal.

After everyone completed their initial tasks, BAM a murder occured!

Everyone got new task lists, and somebody found out they were the murderer!!

After everyone finished their second round of tasks, the final evidence was presented:

Everyone cast their votes, or rather made their accusations. And I mean, I don't mean to brag, but I could have a future in detective work. 

Seeing as I was 1 of only 2 people who correctly identified the murderer! Say whaaat? 

And what kind of detective would I be without proof:

And the murderer thought he was so sly:

Don't worry though, I saw right through his act. 

And that's a wrap!

Friday, April 20, 2012


Do you ever get really tired of the same routine? Whether it's a daily one, weekly one, or a monthly one, do you ever just feel the need to cut yourself some slack and rebel against the structure? 

Well, that happened to me this week {in more ways than one}. 

It's just been getting a little repetitive. Work M-F, 8-5. The same gym classes every day of the week. The same week night commitments. And the same weekly blog posts. 

Trust me, I enjoy my job. I really enjoy the gym. I like playing on a softball team, and I really love going to Community Group on Thursday nights. But it just seems like it's the same routine, week after week. 

And I'm a creature of habit, so that's okay with me. But here on my blog, I don't wanna become committed to routine. If there's a post that I'm really feeling, I don't want to feel like I can't because I have to post about something else. 

I want to feel free to post a deep post if I'm in that mindset, or a funny one like this. So I'm sorry, but it's time to say hell to routine. I'm gonna start keeping it real, and posting whatever's on my mind. 

Don't worry, you can still expect flashbacks, they just might not be always on Fridays. 

With that being said, I wanted to write about passion today. I used to be the girl that was always looking for the relationship, and if I'm being honest, I don't think it really mattered who it was with. I wanted the relationship because I craved the passion. 

Well, I'm happy to report that I don't think I'm that person anymore. I think I've finally realized that I can find passion myself, and here are some things that I've been passionate about lately. 

- My faith

- Blogging, duh.

It's been so much fun exploring with different books, different recipes and then coming back to share them with you guys. I love writing about my faith, and I definitely want to get more creative with my fitness posts. This blog was created to document my 20s, and I want to remember how it felt to realize that I don't need anyone else to enjoy this life. That I am independent enough to find the passion in life myself. 

They say you have to stop looking before you can find the right person, and I believe that. Because from my experience, when you're looking for the right person, you can convince yourself that anyone is the right person. 

So it feels good to know that I've finally stopped looking. That I'm content right here where I'm at. 

And with that, I leave you with a bomb ass pizza recipe. Enjoy. 

Apple, Goat Cheese, and Pecan Pizza


1 (1 lb.) six-grain pizza crust
I just used Trader Joes wheat pizza dough, a fav in our house
Cooking spray
3 cups thinly sliced Fuji apple
1 cup crumbled goat cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1.5 teaspoons honey
2 cups baby arugula
3 tablespoons chopped pecans


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

2. Place pizza crust on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Arrange apple slices evenly over pizza crust; top with cheese. Sprinkle thyme evenly over cheese. Bake at 450 degrees for 8 minutes or until cheese melts and begins to brown. 

3. Combine oil and next 3 ingredients (through honey) in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add arugula; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle pecans evenly over pizza; top with arugula mixture. Cut pizza into 6 wedges. 

Per Serving (Recipe yields 6):

316 Calories
11.2 g Fat
11.3 g Protein
43.2 g Carbohydrates
3 g Fiber
15 mg Cholesterol
0.7 mg Iron
419 mg Sodium
77 mg Calcium

It was so, so good. Perfect mix of fruit, cheese and pizza. Can't go wrong there!

Sidenote: A huge thanks to Vicki for making my social media button. Now you can follow me on twitter, facebook, bloglovin', formspring and instagram. Basically, this is my invitation for you to stalk me. It's cool, I'll stalk you back. 

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Where do I even start? 

This book was amazing. I cried multiple times, laughed multiple times, and felt the constant conflict between not wanting to put the book down and not wanting to finish it. 

It was one of those books where I finish it feeling inspired, uplifted and reminded that there is so, so much beauty in this world. 

I stumbled upon this blog, Enjoying the Small Things, probably 6 or so months ago. As I was reading through Kelle's posts, I got hooked. Every single one was powerful, pulling me in with a voice that seemed to be speaking straight to me, and sending me away with the inspiration to go live my day, and really live it

Kelle is the mother of two beautiful little girls. The younger of the two, Nella, has Down Syndrome. They didn't know this until she was born. Nella's Birth Story is probably the single, most beautiful blog post I've ever read. When I saw that Kelle had a book coming out, I could not be more excited. If this book was even half as amazing as her blog posts, I knew I would love it. So I preordered that baby and couldn't wait to get my hands on it. 

I was not disappointed. 

I would recommend this book to anyone. The story so beautifully brings awareness to Down Syndrome, but it goes beyond that as well. Just as it says on the cover, it's about finding beauty in the unexpected. It's about embracing this life for all of the ups and downs that might come with it. 

Something that I am beginning to truly appreciate is the beauty of feeling. Chances are, not every day is going to be a good day. You might not wake up every morning feeling the excitement of a new day. So when you feel bad, sad, disappointed, cheated, hurt, let yourself feel. It's kind of incredible that sometimes, an emotion can be so real that it becomes physical. Embrace it, I say. And remember, that it will pass

Because before you even know it, you'll be remembering that feeling as a memory. You'll be looking at yourself and realizing that you've come full circle. And then you get the beauty of the other sort of feeling, the happiness. How amazing are the moments when you're laughing so hard that your cheeks hurt, walking around with a smile and not even realizing it, or feeling the butterflies before an exciting event? The lows might be low, but they make the peaks even higher. 

One of the things that I loved the most about Bloom was the powerful message of the importance of friendship. "The Net," as Kelle calls it, "the ever-present existence of one another, standing by, ready to catch any one of us who might be falling." 

"Because we are women, and with that comes spunk and vigor and the need to be heard and validated. With that comes the beautiful storm of strong opinions and the force with which we express them. There is pain. But, underneath, there is so much love. There is the need to answer a call when it comes, and that need and desire to hold each other up-it's truly a beautiful thing." 

To my Net, thank you. I am so fortunate to have the most amazing support system to pull me out of any off day. And even better, to enjoy the good ones. To take this life, and really live it.  

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Well Hot Damn

When the fabulous Raven announced her "Who is your Doppleganger" link up, I knew I had to participate for all of the following reasons:

1. It's Raven. Enough said. 

2. I was pretty sad when I couldn't participate in her tattoo link up. I probably should have though, I could have looked really bad ass with this glitter tattoo:

And 3. My results were so amazing, that it wouldn't have been fair of me to keep them to myself. 

So here it goes: 

I used this website with this picture:

and I must say, after seeing these results, my confidence level just sky rocketed. I'm talking borderline cocky status. Try to contain jealousy. 

#1 Match:

This means I can land a sexy black man who's ten years younger than me. No wonder those 12 year olds keep following me around. 

#2 Match: 

Thanks to good, reliable Wikipedia, I found out this means that I resemble an Italian actress and fashion model. So basically, I'm booking my flight to Italy to fulfill my destiny of shining on the runway. It all makes sense now, I've been in the wrong country. 

#3 Match: 

Having trouble seeing the resemblance?

Now you see it, huh?

#4 Match:

I think this was purely a result of my golden brown skin tone:

And finally, #5 Match:

I think this site is trying to tell me that I look like a half Italian, half African American 76 year old male cougar. 

Thank you, thank you very much. 

A Mommas Desires and Pacifiers

Monday, April 16, 2012

Weekend Wrap Up

Alright, prepare yourself for picture overload right now. 

Don't say I didn't warn you.

All week we had been counting down to our big Friday night plans. 

That consisted of Mexican food. 

Like the responsible (& extremely classy) people that we are, we took a taxi to and from the Mexican restaurant. That is about 5 minutes away from our house.

Day 2 started with some epic breakfast tacos (don't you worry, pictures below) and then turned the health kick up a notch with these babies:

After seeing these on Eat Yourself Skinny, we knew we had to try them. Turns out, they do taste pretty good! And got confirmation when Kim tried them that you really can't taste the coke if you don't know it's in there! Success.

Aaand more pictures:

Oh, and Kristi, we figured out what we're doing for our birthdays this year. Check out what we spotted:

Don't worry, I'm sure it's super cheap. 

Alright, now for the big news of the weekend, I finally signed up for Instagram. Ob. Sessed. Here are my photos from this weekend:

I got a text from my brother that just said "you are obsessssssssssed with instragram" to which I replied "yupppppp."

Keeping it real folks. 

Want to follow my Instagram addiction? Do it.