Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Day

Do you know anyone with a birthday on Leap Day? I do. My good friend, Dana. I highly suggest you go make friends with someone born on February 29th. They get all kinds of free stuff for being born. Tonight Dana and I went on an adventure to reap all the benefits of having a birthday only once every four years. There were quite a few deals that we could have taken advantage of, but I'm going to give you only the ones we did.

Our first stop was in Georgetown. Sprinkles Cupcakes was offering a free dozen cupcakes to anyone born on February 29th. All you had to do was flash your ID. Awesome. After we picked up her cupcakes, we got back in the car a drove a couple miles to Z-Burger (think Five Guys-ish) where Dana was promised not only a free meal, but four free meals. One for each year she misses a birthday. Just a little back story...after a little freebie mishap at lunchtime we decided to call ahead and confirm these deals were still happening. I called Z-Burger and the guy was rude and told me that we could only get one free meal. We decided to print out the deal and show him the proof when we got there. Well turns out when it's our turn to order it was the same guy who I talked to on the phone and he was so mad at us, but he caved and gave us our four free meals. This is when we made friends with the girls behind us in a hurry because I wanted him to have to give us the four free meals since he was so rude. We then we became forever friends with Tuesday and Sharm who we ended up dining with. They are finishing mortuary science school. We had some great stories to exchange.

We were so full after the burgers we couldn't eat the cupcakes or go do anymore deals. There was a reallly good on at BlackFinn in Bethesda...a $50 gift card (you had to make a purchase, though) for anyone born on Leap Day! On the way home we started planning Dana's Birthday/Leap Day 2016...I guess that would be a weekend. We could get a lot done.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Class of All Classes

I've taken a lot of classes in my life. A lot. But I am happy to say today I have taken my LAST marriage class ever. I thought I was ecstatic upon my last class at William and Mary, but even that pales in comparison. Matt and I just completed our premarital counseling. This was comprised of two parts. The first, a series of eight lectures called Spiritual Foundations of Marriage. The second, a mentoring course called Prepare Enrich. Let me begin by saying that I had no problem taking this course, or with the fact that we were required to take it in order to get married at the church we are getting married in. I thought it might even be a good thing, and I still think it could have been, but oh my goodness did those thoughts quickly turn into something else.

Before the course even started, we were the black sheep because both Matt and I put our same address on the registration form. Big mistake. The lesson learned: commit the sin of lying instead of the sin of living together. We received an email informing us that unless we decided to repent and find independent living situations we would not be allowed to participate in the mentoring portion because no married couple would be comfortable mentoring a cohabitating couple. After deciding not to send Matt to live with the Deacons we were allowed to do the mentoring part with the reverend himself. More on this soon.

The Spiritual Foundations course covered quite the array of topics including being a good Christian, taking vows, your partner's needs, sex, etc. Possibly the best things I learned (and I really hope you sense the sarcasm) about being a good wife include being submissive, and how to meet my husbands top five needs. This was the source of the most contention with was so 1950's it was unfortunate. To make this a shorter post than this could potentially be I will just let you know that I should always look the way my husband wants me to look, I should never gain weight, and I should never look like a bag lady. I should also have dinner on the table, the kids well-behaved, and allow my husband to relax after work, as well as have sex with him every night, and if I don't it's no wonder he would find it elsewhere. You may think I'm exaggerating, but I'm not. I have the literature to prove it if you want to borrow it.

As for the mentoring... it might say it all that during the first class our mentor told Matt that he should quit school because it's not as important as the marriage. We were supposed to also meet with him six times, but after three I'm pretty sure he gave up on us. I am far too strong a personality for him. He told us that we could be done with the mentoring today. All in all this was very frustrating. Matt and I were talking on the way home today and we both wish we could have done the class with someone else. It had a lot of potential, but I think there was some serious bias getting in the way. For now, though, I am just so glad to be done! And much to what I am sure would be our mentor's dismay we celebrated with shots. We needed them.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Recipe of the Week!

Cinnamon Rolls
Obviously these are delicious. Sadly I made them in hopes I would get a snow day and be able to wake up on a snowy morning and sit on my couch, watch daytime television, sip coffee, and eat these cinnamon rolls. Sounds magical, right? Yeah. Too bad my dream never came true. We just ate the last of these on Monday morning (I had made them back in January and frozen most of them) when it was like 55 and sunny. I suggest these even if you don't have snow. They were amazing and they froze really you could make a big batch and eat them whenever you might want too. Side note...this is the recipe where I learned about why the temperature of the milk actually matters when combining it with yeast. I don't think my dough did the whole rising thing cause I didn't really think the temperature mattered. Definitely something I will keep in mind for next time, but like I said they still tasted good :)

  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 1/2 cups (or more) unbleached all purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons rapid-rise yeast (1 envelope)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray

  • 3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For dough:
Combine milk and butter in glass measuring cup. Microwave on high until butter melts and mixture is just warmed to 120°F to 130°F, 30 to 45 seconds. Pour into bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Add 1 cup flour, sugar, egg, yeast, and salt. Beat on low speed 3 minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Add 21/2 cups flour. Beat on low until flour is absorbed and dough is sticky, scraping down sides of bowl. If dough is very sticky, add more flour by tablespoonfuls until dough begins to form ball and pulls away from sides of bowl. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes. Form into ball. Lightly oil large bowl with nonstick spray. Transfer dough to bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.

For filling:
Mix brown sugar and cinnamon in medium bowl. Punch down dough. Transfer to floured work surface. Roll out to 15x11-inch rectangle. Spread butter over dough, leaving 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar evenly over butter. Starting at 1 long side, roll dough into log, pinching gently to keep it rolled up. With seam side down, cut dough crosswise with thin sharp knife into 18 equal slices (each about 1/2 to 3/4 inch wide). Spray two 9-inch square glass baking dishes with nonstick spray. Divide rolls between baking dishes, arranging cut side up (there will be almost no space between rolls). Cover baking dishes with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until almost doubled in volume, 40 to 45 minutes.Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 375°F. Bake rolls until tops are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and invert immediately onto rack. Cool 10 minutes. Turn rolls right side up.

For glaze:
Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat until smooth. Spread glaze on rolls. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Monday, February 20, 2012

One Year!

Guess what?!? It's's one year anniversary. Exactly one year ago today I started this blog. Who knew I would actually keep it up?! I checked today and this will make 130 posts...including 45 "Recipes on the Week." I'm actually pretty proud of my little blogsies. I was thinking maybe I should make a goal for year two of blogging. The two things I came up with are to make my blog more famous, and to try to make it more advanced technologically/look more appealing.

In other blog worthy news...our registry is now complete. Talk about exhausting. It was quite the project today. More impressively, my blog will now share a birthday with the newest member of the Keough family. Matt's cousin, Jess, had a baby girl very early this morning!

Coming soon: honeymoon updates...maybe even a booking.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

For The Kids, For the Glory

This weekend Penn State students raised $10,686,924.83 for pediatric cancer. So many good things happen in State College...this is the epitome of what it means to be a Penn Stater. How I wish ESPN, CNN, and all the other haters were there this weekend. They would know how wrong they are. Fight on State.

Friday, February 17, 2012


Seven years ago today I stood up in Rec Hall and didn't sit down for another 48 hours. It was awesome. This weekend 700 people will do the same thing and countless Penn State students will help them make it through. Penn State Dance Marathon (THON) will be held this weekend at the Bryce Jordan Center to help raise money to find a cure for cancer. This is the largest student run philanthropy in the world. It's what we mean when we say WE ARE PENN STATE. It's completely indescribable until you have been to your first THON. I encourage you to go to THON's website this weekend and view the live video. I can't wait to report about our grand total on Sunday night!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Enough is Enough

I had a meltdown today. Actually, it might have been two. The first was much more under control. The second: a mess. I attribute this to no snow days...usually by now there has been a few days break from mental anguish, but ll I see is a lot of 50 degree temperatures. Thank goodness for Abe and George and their birthdays.

So aside from my own mental health being beyond repair at the moment...the state of Virginia's educational system may be as well. Pay freezes, decreased benefits, and no more contracts? Basically as I understand it, when I am in my 7th year, I will still be paid as a 2nd year teacher (because that's what I get paid now as a 4th year). All this while maintaining a positive attitude and making sure every student is perfect by the year 2015. When is enough enough?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Recipe of the Week!

Apple Crisp

I made this apple crisp for a dinner party where I was in charge of the dessert course. I had to poke some holes in the top crust during the baking process to help the cooking along. We topped it with cool whip or vanilla ice cream. The apple crisp got good reviews and it was pretty quick and easy to make.


  • 5 pounds McIntosh apples
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the topping:


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 14 by 2-inch oval baking dish.
Peel, core, and cut the apples into large wedges. Combine the apples with the zests, juices, sugar, and spices. Pour into the dish.
To make the topping, combine the flour, sugars, salt, oatmeal, and cold butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the mixture is crumbly and the butter is the size of peas. Scatter evenly over the apples.
Place the crisp on a sheet pan and bake for 1 hour until the top is brown and the apples are bubbly. Serve warm.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Kane Show Debut

I've mentioned before about how much I love the Kane Show. I so wish I was BFF with all of them. Well last week there was a very shining moment in my morning. Kane and company were complaining about those who have Sunday weddings. About how inconvenient they are for people and that those people are just being cheap, so you shouldn't give them a good gift and you shouldn't have as much fun at their wedding. Well naturally I had an opinion bring that my wedding is on a Sunday. I text them my thoughts and they read my text on air. I was so thrilled for myself. One step closer.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Recipe of the Week!

Crazy Feta
I'm going to confess one of my tacky habits. I like to go to Whole Foods and just walk around and eat their samples. When I lived in Fairfax I use to do this alllll the time, mostly in the summer when I wasn't working. I literally like went there for lunch. Like I said...tacky habit. So on to the recipe...during one of my trips to Whole Foods last's next to the library in Vienna so at least I also have the habit of reading...I came across a sampling of hummus and this so called crazy feta. I literally proceeded to eat almost the entire container of the crazy feta much to Matt's dismay. This stuff is seriously like crack it's so addicting. Well the only thing thats not addicting...the Whole Foods price, $9.99 for a 4 oz. container. I almost threw up all my crazy feta. That's when I decided I could make it super easy. I warn you it is spicy, but it's seriously so good you won't care if you're tearing up while eating. It would make a great dip for the Superbowl this weekend! 


16 oz Feta Cheese (I bought bricks and crumbled it myself, but you could also get crumbled)
3 Jalapenos 
1 Garlic bulb
Juice and Zest of half a lemon
Olive Oil


Preheat oven to 400. Cut off the top of the garlic bulb and brush with olive oil. Brush jalapenos with olive oil. Place garlic and jalapenos in the oven until golden. Meanwhile crumble the feta. Add the zest and juice of half a lemon. Remove the jalapenos and garlic from the oven. Squeeze the garlic cloves from the bulb directly into the feta. Remove the skins and seeds from the jalapenos, dice, and add to feta mixture. Add about 1/4 cup olive oil and mix together. The feta should be in between a spread and dip consistency. Salt and pepper to taste.