Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Photo Challenge: Leaves

This week's photo challenge is leaves.  I wish it was autumn while writing this blogpost since one of my favorite things about autumn is the colorful leaves.  Although, this one was easy for me since our backyard is basically a forrest.  Thic picture was taken from my hammock which I love to lay in and watch the world go by. 

One of the reasons why I love our house so much is because of all the surrounding trees.  We have a set of pine trees in our front yard and then an "island" of trees fills our backyard.  It's not good for the nearby pool, but they are so serene and peaceful if I'm just relaxing in the hammock on a nice summer day.  The trees also provide a ton of shade, so even if it's hot outside, it's breezy under the trees.  Danny tells me to wait until the autumn and see if I still like the trees then! I guess we will have to wait and see!


Monday, July 29, 2013

A Putt Putt Date Night

This past Friday, Danny and I had a date night!  Since I was in training this week until Friday and I had to work my normal schedule on Sunday, I didn't really have a weekend, so we made the best of it.  We started out with dinner at Claddah's Irish Pub.  Its one of our favorite places since it's where we first met each other in January of 2012.  They have an amazing veggie burger made out of spinach and feta cheese, it is so good!

Spinach feta veggie burger.
Danny at dinner.
Me at dinner.
After dinner we decided we didn't want to go home yet, so we thought of things to do.  I had purchased a groupon a few months ago for a putt putt course, so we decided to try it out.  Danny loves to putt putt and has been "golfing" (virtually on the xbox) lately.  I even tried to plan a date night last year at a putt putt place, however once we got there, it was an empty, abandoned lot that looked like it had been closed for awhile! So, putt putt golfing was WAY overdue for us.  Plus, Danny and I are both really competitive, so we wanted to see who would win in a putt putt match.

The Golf Dome was really nice and a very popular place on a Friday night for high school kids and families.  We played two full games and ended up tying the first game and then I lost the second game.  We will have to have a rematch sometime soon so I can beat him, I came so close the first game!

The Golf Dome.

On Saturday morning, Danny and I finally got to sleep in which always makes the days go by faster.  We ran a few errands at the mall including stocking up on my favorite stores like, Lush!

Lush is a line of fresh, homemade cosmetics and I especially love lush for their face wash and facial cleansers.  I learned about Lush about a year ago when I got a facial.  The technician said I should check them out for all different skin types.  As soon as I walked in, I was greeted by a friendly worker who started narrowing down what type of face wash I should use.  She tried many things right there in the store by seeing what went best with the skin on my hands.  I now use these products everyday and love them! They also have the most amazing masks made with all organic ingredients.  These have to be refrigerated and last up to a few weeks. I love lush because it is all natural and they don't believe in testing their products on animals which makes me like them even more.

After checking out the mall (which we hadn't been in it seemed like ages!), we headed to Applebees for a linner (lunch and dinner) meal.  I ended up trying their amazing Berry Spinach Salad which was so good! It had blue cheese and caramelized pecans on it too which made it extra yummy!

Upon arriving home on Saturday, Danny and I decided to have a movie night.  I chose one movie and he chose another movie for me to watch, both that the other had not seen before.  My choice was Burn After Reading which is hilarious and twisted on so many levels and Danny seemed to like it (I think he was just glad I didn't pick a chick flick starring Katherine Hiegl).  Then we ended the evening with The Prestige which I had never seen before and I thought it was AMAZING!! I couldn't believe all the interesting plot twists in this movie and how it made you think.  Overall, very intriguing and I can't wait to see it again.  The Prestige was written by Christopher Nolan who also wrote the screenplays for Inception, The Dark Knight, and The Dark Knight Rises.

All together it was a nice, short weekend enjoying time with my husband.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sunday Social: What's cookin', Good Lookin'?

This Sunday Social is all about food!  I love to cook (when I have the time) and I especially love to eat! I try to find time to cook not only what I like, but what Danny likes too which is sometimes difficult when our likes are completely different.

1. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

If I could eat one thing for the rest of my life it would be pasta.  Even though I am a vegetarian, I sometimes can be a "carbatarian" and eat a lot of pasta.  Its not always healthy, but that's why I've been incorporating more fruits and vegetables into my pasta meals.

I made this pasta with asparagus and sun dried tomatoes last week.

2. What’s your guilty pleasure/comfort food?

Ramen noodles.  I love soups and broths in general, especially on a cold day or if I'm not feeling well, so Ramen noodles are my go-to comfort food.

3. What’s the weirdest/craziest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Since I'm a vegetarian, I haven't tried many weird animal products or anything like that.  I actually hate trying new foods all together because I have very picky taste buds. Some people might think that Tofu is weird, which a few years ago, I would have agreed. However after I got over the texture, I found it very good!

4. What foods do you avoid at all costs?

I avoid meat at all costs obviously.  I also do not like uncooked broccoli.  I will even go so far as pick it out of my soups and stir-frys if I'm unsure that it has been cooked all the way.

5. What meal reminds you of your childhood?

Spaghetti.  My mom makes the most amazing spaghetti and I remember her making it a lot during my childhood.  My family loves it so much that my mom used to make it for Christmas dinners instead of the typical Ham dinner (which I was okay with it!) She got her recipe from her mom and my mom has passed it down to me so I can make it for me and Danny. 

6. Share one of your favorite recipes and the story behind it.

One of my favorite recipes is for a hearty vegetarian chili.  Since I love soups this is such a great meal in the fall and winter and I even made it last month since I was craving it!  There is only four ingredients and it takes 15 minutes to cook!

Quick Vegetarian Chili


1 tsp of canola oil
1 clove of garlic, fresh, minced
14 1/2 oz Tomatoes, stewed
15 oz of Kidney beans
15 1/4 oz corn, yellow, canned
15 oz tomato sauce, canned
1 Tbsp of chili powder
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp pepper flakes
1/4 cup of onions, dehydrated flakes
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 tbsp of cheddar cheese, shredded, low fat

Heat oil in a large, nonstick, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat.  Add garlic, cook stirring frequently about 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes, beans, corn, tomato sauce, chili powder, oregano, red pepper flakes, onion and pepper, stir well.

Increase heat to high and bring chili to a boil, stirring frequently until chili is thick and flavors are concentrated about 5 minutes.  Spoon into serving bowls and sprinkle with cheese.  Yields about 1 1/4 cups of chili and 1 tbsp of cheese per serving.

Source: Weight Watchers

Friday, July 26, 2013

The Cleveland Museum of Natural History

On Thursday night, Danny and I headed to The Cleveland Museum of Natural History located in University Circle near downtown Cleveland.  My company had an event where we ate dinner and then got into the museum for free.  I took a few pictures, but we had to cut the trip short after I learned what "natural habitat" really meant.  I was used to the zoo animals with all of their different cages, but at this museum, it was very different.  As soon as I saw the lifeless bodies in the cages, I realized I couldn't take it.  There's a reason why I'm vegetarian and I believe in not harming animals no matter what, so the museum was a little too much for me.

The Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
We saw this owl named Napoleon.
 After our misfortunes at the museum, we decided to head to Winking Lizard since it was still happy hour.  Winking Lizard has one of the best beer selections which includes The World Tour that customers can  attempt to drink up to 150 beers to win prizes over a year time period.  They are a regional resturant so they have locations in the Cleveland area and in Columbus, Ohio.

Winking Lizard
Happy Friday, Friends!

High Five for Friday

I had a great week this week.  I apologize for all of the food pictures in this post! I guess we did a lot of home cooking/eating this week!

1.  Danny and I netflixed a few documentaries on healthy eating this week.  Now that its been 4 months after the wedding, we needed a push to get back into the healthy lifestyle that we had before the wedding.  One of my favorite documentaries is Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead which follows a man on his journey of going on a "Juice Fast" for 60 days.  This was Danny's first time watching the documentary and now we are beginning our Juice Journey.  We're not going crazy or anything like a juice fast, but we want to try incorporating it into our daily diet.  On Wednesday, Danny grabbed a juice for a snack, it was juiced carrots and apples.

2.  Continuing on with the theme, I made pasta with sun dried tomatoes and asparagus (I added chicken for Danny's).  It was my first time cooking and eating asparagus and I really enjoyed it.

3. I packed my lunch a lot this week and a favorite is this salad.  It had spinach and something new for me, chick peas! I've discovered chick peas more recently for salads because I used to eat them as falafel, but I never really had them raw.  They are very good, although I have to limit my intake since they still carry calories (darn).

4. We headed to puppy class this week as our 6 and final week! He learned so much and we are very proud of puppy especially when he didn't make Mommy and Daddy look like fools in class!  We are so happy he graduated and got his own certificate!  It's hanging on our fridge now! (Can you blame us? We don't have children.)

5.  I had dinner with my friend, Kara this week! Her husband Chad is in Colorado for work so we had a great Mexican dinner and of course margaritas at one of my favorite local restaurants.

Hope everyone had a good week!  I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for High Five for Friday.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Our trip to Boston

So since Danny and I travel pretty frequently, I decided to use throwback Thursdays to highlight some of the trips we've been on that haven't been covered in the blog.  One of my favorites and our very first vacation together was to Boston, MA in May of 2012. 

Danny and I first started dating a few months earlier and I remember when Danny brought up the idea. I was so excited because it meant that me and my boyfriend were traveling to an exciting, unknown place (this was during the short time that we were actually boyfriend/girlfriend and not engaged yet).  Danny was working with the Cleveland Indians and much like he did when he worked with the Cincinnati Reds, he wanted to work a road game with the Indians while exploring the city.  We finally settled on Boston since I had never been there and Danny had only visited once when he was really young.

Our flight took off at 6 am (meaning we had to get to the airport by 4 am), we ended up oversleeping!! Danny was freaking out the entire drive to the airport and I was starting to see his true colors (just kidding!).  Boston was actually the first time I realized I was dating a man that had similar characteristics to my father.  Growing up, my dad would always freak out whenever we had to travel and Danny was the EXACT same way!

We arrived at the airport with plenty of time and got to Boston around mid morning.  We took the train from the airport to our hotel, Longwood Inn located in Brookline, MA right outside the city.  The hotel was amazing and was set up more like a Bed & Breakfast.  It was in a beautiful part of town and Danny and I loved Brookline for its charm and location!

The first night, we settled in and Danny went off to work.  I met him after the game for a beer at a bar near our hotel.  I also got to meet one of his coworkers, Jordan who is a beat writer for the Indians and travels with them when they're on the road.

The next day started our adventure in Boston.  We decided to take the train into Boston Commons and get the Freedom Tour of the downtown Boston area and the historical significance.  Our tour guide, who was dressed like a man of those times, took us through a lot of historical areas in Boston including the Granary Burying Ground where Sam Adams and John Hancock are buried as well as the site of the Boston Massacre.  Overall, this tour was amazing and I highly recommend it if you are visiting the area.

Us in Boston Commons, where the Freedom tour began.
Granary Burying Ground.
The site of the Boston Massacre.
Next, we wandered around the area and came across a few shops and restaurants.  We decided to eat at Beantown Pub which was located directly across from the Granary Burying Ground.

Beantown Pub, Downtown Boston.

After eating lunch and touring Boston, we ended up near Fenway Park for dinner and out to some local bars after that.

The next day was by far one of my favorite days ever! Although it was a long day, it was so much fun.  We started with a taxi ride to Sam Adams Brewery and went for a tour where we got to sample four glasses of Sam Adams Beer.  After the tour, there was a free trolley ride to the first restaurant to sell Sam Adams beer called, Doyle's Cafe.  It was no ordinary trolley that took us to Doyle's.  It had loud music and even a stripper pole.  I loved watching people's faces on the streets of the neighborhoods we traveled through.  It was an amazing experience.
Sam Adams Brewery.
Danny and me before the tour started.
Our tour guide was AMAZING!
Barrels of Beer.
Me and Danny trying the samples.
The Trolley to Doyle's!
Danny and I decided to keep the party going and stop by some local bars/pubs near our hotel in Brookline.  I have good memories of these moments since it's when we first started talking about marrying each other!!

Later that night we headed down to the bar area and met up with one of Danny's friends from when he played little league.  After her and her friend had left, it was nearing closing time.  We had basically been drinking all day so I was ready to go home.  Danny left me to use the restroom and I had noticed that he was taking longer than usual.  Because of the alcohol and the nerves of being in a new city, I started to get myself upset that he was not back yet.  After 10-15 minutes, he returned to our table.  I was upset that he had been gone for so long and then he explained to me that he was talking to his dad on the phone about us and how he wanted to marry me.  At that point, all my prior feelings were pushed aside and I was overfilled with joy.  That night will be one that I will never forget.

The next day was our last day in Boston before flying back to Cleveland.  Danny's cousin, Kristen and her friend were meeting us in Boston.  This was my first time meeting her.  Since Danny grew up as an only child, he was very close to his cousins especially Kristen.  After meeting her that day, I realized that they even act like brother and sister instead of cousins.  Fast forward a few months when Danny and I got engaged, I happily asked Kristen to be a bridesmaid in our wedding since she is such a big part of Danny's life!

Fenway Park.
Danny with his cousin, Kristen.
Me and Danny at Fenway.
Halfway through the game we had to leave to catch our flight home.  Boston was an amazing trip and I cannot wait to go back.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

#WeddingWednesday: Invitations

This Wedding Wednesday is dedicated to the paper I used to create our save the dates and wedding invitations.  From the beginning of the planning process, a friend of mine told me to look at Wedding Paper Divas for all of my paper product needs.  As soon as I logged onto the site, I fell in love with their adorable designs and colorful invitations.

Finding a save the date that I liked was easy, but for some reason finding an invitation was a lot harder.  I went through invitation after invitation until I stumbled on the new collection that Wedding Paper Divas just released last winter.  Instantly I knew the design went with the theme and colors of our wedding.  I also wanted a invitation pocket to finish the look and I found a great deal at Card & Pockets.  I was able to order samples of both the card pockets and also the invitations, however Danny and I made the mistake of showing everyone the samples.  We learned through this process that everyone has their own opinion and we had to pick what we wanted and not what everyone else wanted.  I ended up choosing the invitation and just barely showed Danny a preview before ordering them (he's pretty easy-going, so I knew he would be okay with whichever I chose).  This way, I chose the invitation I liked best and didn't have to worry about everyone else's opinions.

Our save the date- it acts as a refrigerator magnet too!
This obviously wasn't our wedding invitation, but it's just a sample of what ours looked like.
I loved the flowers and subtle pink tones since it was a spring wedding and our colors were Champagne and Pink.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Photo Challenge: Happiness

This week I started Virtualization training for work, so I feel like I'm back at school again.  I like the break from the normal routine, but it means I have to work Monday through Friday this week which is unusual for me (I normally work Sundays through Wednesdays). This week's photo challenge is Happiness.

I've learned about happiness a lot in the last few years and what makes me truly happy.  One of the reason why I chose the blog title, "happy Wife, happy Life" is because I believe that to have a fulfilling life, you need to surround yourself with those things that make you happy.  One of the many things that makes me happy is my family.  Included in my family are my kitties and puppy dog.  We came home from a weekend at the lake and I was greeted and frankly stalked by the kitties that I hadn't seen for a couple of days.  They would not leave my side and it made me happy to know that they missed me just like I missed them.  Below is a picture of me and Teddy cuddling on the Lazy Boy.  These moments make me happy.

Teddy Bear and me.

Photo Challenge:

Monday, July 22, 2013

Weekend at the Lake

This weekend Danny and I headed to the lake with the puppy dog to visit Danny's parents, Doug and Kathy.  Kathy grew up visiting her grandparents at the lake and 30 years later, her and Doug decided to visit family members that still live at the lake last year. They loved it and decided to look into buying a lake house so they could have somewhere to visit in the summer. They bought the house last October so this is our first time spending a summer at the lake! We have so much fun up at the lake and this weekend was no different!

View from my kayak of the lake.
We started with a night of grilling out when we arrived Friday. Kathy got ingredients to make our own kabobs! They were delicious!
Kabobs and pasta salad.
Weight Watcher Peach cobbler. 
We had a busy Saturday. We started off with heading to one of my favorite places called, Campbell Pottery Store. They feature a lot of handmade pieces and creative art. We found a beautiful vase to add to our dining room/kitchen area. After we shopped, we headed to the art gallery where they were having the Lily Art Show. It featured local artists pieces that resembled Lilies. All the art was beautiful and it was neat since Kathy's cousin, Kathy Travis is among those local artists. She received an honorable mention for her beautiful watercolor.

Campbell Pottery Store

Campbell Pottery Store
Danny with our new vase.
Energy-Frequency-Vibration by Kathryn E. Travis

After the art show, we explored some of the little shops around town and got something to eat.

Posing in front of the city sign like tourists.
Danny and me at lunch.
After walking around town, we picked up the dogs and took them for a walk around the lake. Danny's parent's dog, Oscar is a black lab and loves to go swimming. We took them to the boat ramp to let Oscar swim and surprisingly enough Yogi got in too!! Our dog has been deathly afraid of any type of water (shower, pool, rain, etc.) so this was a mini miracle in my eyes and gave me hope for the future.
Danny walking Yogi to the lake.
Yogi watching Oscar swim in the lake.
Yogi in the lake!
After the puppy swim, we headed to dinner at the Sunset Grill which is an amazing restaurant that overlooks the lake. They had live music too so it was a nice and relaxing environment!

The view from dinner at Sunset Grill.
Kathy and Doug at dinner.
Once we returned home, I convinced Danny and Doug to go kayaking with me. Danny, being an avid blog reader, mentioned that we should go "cabrewing" since he knows it's on my 30 Before 30 list! What a great hubby! So we got in our kayaks with our beer (our kayaks even had a cup holder, it was perfect!) and set out camera in hand to explore the lake. This was special to me because I got to capture and share the amazing views that I see every time I go out on the lake. Below are some of the pictures I captured and even includes an amazing photo that my father-in-law took of me and Danny watching the sunset!

Danny in the kayak.
Danny out on the lake.
Me on the lake.
Danny cabrewing.
Me and Danny.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...