Friday, January 27, 2012

Daily Dozen

My Daily Dozen
The personal creed of Robert Louis Stevenson
1. Make up your mind to be happy. Learn to find pleasure in simple things.  (What a great start to a daily list! I love this advice, as evidenced by my blog's little tagline, although I must admit that I often have to remind myself that my level of happiness is totally in my control.)*
2. Make the best of your circumstances. No one has everything, and everyone has something of sorrow intermingled with the gladness of life. The trick is to make the laughter outweigh the tears. (I love the words "the gladness of life" and am thinking of writing this on my bathroom mirror so I'll never forget it. Is that weird?)
3. Don't take yourself too seriously. Don't think that somehow you should be protected from misfortunes that befall others.  (I don't.)
4. You can't please everybody. Don't let criticism worry you. (Amen.)
5. Don't let your neighbor set your standards. Be yourself.  (This...this right here is one of my biggest struggles, I've always struggled with insecurity and I am the queen of self-comparison; I even quit Facebook because of it [among lots of other reasons.] I often think I know who "I" am, but then I find myself comparing everything to everyone, so I guess I'm not so sure just yet. Do any of you struggle with this? Or if you once did, how did you/do you overcome it? I'm on a constant search for the answer...)
6. Do the things you enjoy doing, but stay out of debt.  (Solid advice. Luckily, I'm pretty easily amused.)
7. Don't borrow trouble. Imaginary things are harder to bear than the actual ones. (Truth.)
8. Since hate poisons the soul, do not cherish enmities, grudges. Avoid people who make you unhappy.  (Don't you with you had this advice when you were in high school? Sheesh.)
9. Have many interests. If you can't travel, read about new places. (Now I know which is #1 on my dad's list.  I really love this advice. I don't understand when people can't answer the simple question "What do you like to do?"  How can you be an interesting person if you have no interests?)
10. Don't hold postmortems. Don't spend your life brooding over sorrows and mistakes. Don't be the one who never gets over things. (Can I get an "AMEN??" Get over it and move on. Now.)
11. Do what you can for those less fortunate than yourself.  (We have so much to give. Go out and spread the love.)
12. Keep busy at something. A very busy person never has time to be unhappy.  (This falls so naturally into my goals for 2012. Busy, busy, busy.)

*I'm sure you've figured this out by now, but everything in ( ) are my own thoughts. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Brussels Sprouts

I love brussels sprouts. Seriously love them. I'm still trying to convince boyfriend of their magic, but he'll catch on eventually. I've already converted him to kale (in chip form) so there's hope for the sprouts.

But since he's not quite on the brussels sprouts wagon yet, and he was out of town last weekend, I decided to make brussels sprouts the star of my Sunday dinner. 

Brussels Sprouts with Sausage and Walnuts
(serves 1, but can be easily doubled or tripled)

what you need:
1 sausage link, sliced.  I used Applegate Organics Sweet Italian Sausage (it's chicken and turkey)
10 brussels sprouts, halved or quartered.
1 or 2 cloves garlic, chopped.
1 T. fresh rosemary OR 1 T. dried Italian seasoning. Or both!
a handful of walnuts, toasted
shredded parmesan cheese, to taste
olive oil
red pepper flakes
salt & pepper

How you make it:
Add a bit of oil to a big skillet and saute the sausage until browned. It's already fully-cooked, so you're literally just browning it here. Once the sausage is ready, take it out of pan. Add a bit more oil and toss in the brussels sprouts. I like to put them all cut-side down first. Saute the sprouts for a few minutes, then add the garlic and seasonings. Keep sauteing until sprouts are browned and softened. Add the sausage back to the skillet, and cook just until sausage is warmed. Transfer all that yumminess to a big plate, top with the walnuts and parmesan, and shove it in your face. It's delicious! And healthy! So don't feel bad if you eat it all.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Reason #473 Why I Love My Dog

She knows how to rock a 'hawk.

-Baby Garren, healthy and oh so handsome.
-An unexpected Monday night date.
-Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
-Instagram. (I'm wallycado if you'd like to follow)

Friday, January 13, 2012

I heart OK

I've always wanted a tattoo, but I never knew what I wanted to have permanently inked on my body.  There's no beauty in a random bird on your foot if it means nothing to you. My boyfriend's siblings love tattoos and his sister has been trying to help me decide on what to get for years. Then, almost a year ago, we went out for a night of bowling, and came home with tattoos.

And just like that, Oklahoma found a permanent place on my wrist (and on Taylor's ankle), and in my heart.

It's more than a love for my home state. To me, this little tattoo represents everything I hold dear: my family, my history, my friends, all in one place.

Friday, January 6, 2012

I love : Polaroids

Here's a picture I took with my phone of a picture I took with a Polaroid camera.

It was a gift from boyfriend this Christmas and I love it. I'm tempted to take picture after picture, but there's only 10 pics in a roll of film so I've had to be very selective. I thought Rose dressed up in her New Year's finest was a good choice.

1. My new 2012 planner from Erin Condren. I'm slightly obsessed. It makes me feel very organized, and I am not an organized person by any means.
2. Sunflowers. I know I mention them often, but they are such happy flowers I can't help but be happy with them in my house.
3. Sharing a chocolate milkshake and fries with my nephew at Tucker's. You have to dip the fries in the shake. Just believe me on this one.
4. The Joy of Less. 2012 is going to be a year of de-cluttering my life, starting with my home. I plan on writing more on this in future.
5. Morning snuggles with a freshly groomed pup. The Squeeze can get rather stinky...

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


I don't know about you, but I'm ready to put 2011 behind me. It wasn't that it was a bad year, it just wasn't what I hoped. Now that we are four days into the new year, I'm officially over 2011, and therefore don't need to rehash all the good, bad and ugly of the year. Like everyone else, I'm looking ahead.

I was going to list all my hopes/dreams/goals/resolutions/whateveryouwanttocallit for 2012 here, but after typing and erasing the start of the list like seven times, I'm decided against it. It doesn't matter to you what my goals are. And lots of them are personal anyway. So instead I'll just share one. Because it's a good one and I'm excited about it.

I got a set of Boom Boom Cards from my sis-in-law for Christmas. I had no idea what they were, but am super excited about them now that I do. Basically, there's 25 cards in the deck. Each card has a good deed written on it and they all vary from things like buy a stranger a cup of coffee to writing a letter to a long lost friend. After the suggested deed, there's also a way to Revolutionize It! by stepping it up a notch, like instead of writing that letter to your best friend from second grade, why not write it to your worst enemy from senior year of high school? Anyway, each card has a tracking code on it. When you complete the deed, you go online to register your card and tell your Boom Boom story. Then you pass the card along to someone, anyone, and watch as that card and it's good deed gets (hopefully) passed around and around. I think the whole concept is awesome. So my goal for 2012 is to complete my deck of Boom Boom Cards and pass them along. 25 cards, 12 months. Absolutely doable.

1. Magazine subscriptions...specifically Whole Living, Elle Decor, Taste of Home, and a new OK based paper This Land.   All of which were gifted to me by loving people (and Recycle Bank points!)
2. Spending New Year's Eve at home with boyfriend. We cooked a fancy meal, drank champagne, cheered on the Thunder, and squinted way too much while watching a Swedish movie. It was the first time I've stayed in on NYE, and it was so, so fun.
3. Fresh sunflowers from Sunflower Market. They are SO pretty!
4. Being blessed with a wonderful and giving family on Christmas.
5. Sharing your goals and wishes for 2012 with your best friend only to have her tell you that she has the exact.same.goals. It's always more fun to go through things as two rather than one.