Monday, July 30, 2012

A married weekend

Tyler finally came home from Pittsburgh so we could get back to being a newly-married-couple-who-just-moved-across-the-country-together again! I could not have been happier. I even last minute altered our 'Love is Sweet' banner from our wedding to a 'Welcome Home' banner. I hurriedly hung it up (temporarily). They had the same amount of letters! I must say I spent much more time stenciling and painting it for the wedding, instead of a purple sharpie I came across for this occasion.
 I decided to start making my pictures bigger. Let me know if anyone objects.

As excited as I was to see Tyler and end my week of seeing zero people I know in this state...I believe Tyler was just as excited to see...the olympics. I can honestly say that his eyes never leave the TV when any olympic sporting event is on. I knew this was coming however...so I made an Olympic breakfast for champions for his return. I must say he enjoyed it just as much as the Olympics!
Don't mind the boxes around us...


This breakfast was fun to make. However, I had all week to plan it. Don't expect it to be a daily thing...
I started with Paula Deen's French Toast Casserole. I actually made everything the night before and cooked it the next morning! I would suggest this for a lazy Saturday morning.
Paula Deen's Baked French Toast with Maple Syrup
Ingredients
  • 1 loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces)
  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Dash salt
  • Praline Topping, recipe follows
  • Maple syrup
Directions
Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs. Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch flat baking dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and beat with a rotary beater or whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, making sure all are covered evenly with the milk-egg mixture. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread Praline Topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. Serve with maple syrup.

Praline Topping:
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well. 
This was our very favorite! Tyler said it may be his favorite breakfast food all time. I don't even liked pecans and I was eating them plain it was so good.


Hashbrown Casserole

Tastes pretty dang close to Cracker Barrel.
  • 2 lbs frozen hash browns 
  • 1/2 cup margarine or 1/2 cup butter, melted 
  • 1 (10 1/4 ounce) can cream of chicken soup 
  • 1 pint sour cream 
  • 1/2 cup onion, peeled and chopped 
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese, grated (I used Wisconsin Medium Sharp)
  • 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Preheat oven to 350°F and spray an 11 x 14 baking dish with cooking spray. 
Mix the above ingredients together, place in prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until brown on top.
*I also cut this recipe in half to make this portion, it still made about 6 servings

And I always have peanut butter fudge on Christmas morning...and the Olympics are almost as exciting as Christmas.

Peanut Butter Fudge
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar

Directions

  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar and milk. Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes once boiling, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter and vanilla. Beat in powdered sugar with an electric mixer. Beat until smooth; pour into an 8x8 inch dish and press firmly. Chill until firm and cut into squares. 
Wish I could say that we took a long run after this meal...but we did not. The only thing we ran were errands. A lot of them. But it is fun getting your home all ready to live in! Our next adventure: my mom and Landon come to see us on Wednesday! I CANNOT WAIT.




Thursday, July 26, 2012

First recipe

I finally compiled my kitchen together after days of unpacking and reopening our shower/wedding gifts. So what better way to complete it other than cooking? I have gathered so many recipes the past year from family, friends, showers, magazines, and the internet that I could feed an army if I made each one in my recipe box.

Tonight I decided on Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti.




12 oz spaghetti
1 (28 ounce) jars prepared spaghetti sauce ( I used Prego with Mushrooms and Green Peppers)
1 lb lean ground beef
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 clove garlic, minced
8 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Cook the ground beef. Drain. Mix with spaghetti sauce and put aside. Cook your noodles and drain. Pour noodles into a separate bowl and add cream cheese, italian seasoning, and garlic. Grate Parmesan cheese.
Pour a little meat sauce on the bottom on a greased 9x13 dish. Pour noodle mixture and spread. Pour remaining meat sauce and then top with parmesan cheese.
i'm not a photographer

Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees and voila! I topped mine with a little more cheese and basil.

Thank you logan for the vintage pyrex little dish! I love them!

I think I was more excited to use all my new dishes and kitchen supplies than I was to eat a meal.

However, it made me miss everyone at home :(

That said...it was only me eating. Fortunately, Tyler gets back from Pittsburgh tomorrow night and can finish the 7 servings of left overs! I cannot wait to live in our new home together...finally furnished and unpacked! Pictures soon to come.

In other news...THE OLYMPICS START TOMORROW! I may develop a temporary crush on Michael Phelps...or Lochte...either one. Go 'merica!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Surrounded by boxes

As I sit here, I cannot see anywhere in my peripheral vision because boxes are stacked as tall as I am. I cannot take a picture of it because I do not want to believe that it is real life. Yesterday I organized for 12 hours and I have yet to see a difference in the amount of boxes we have in this apartment!

So I need to focus on happier things...like this weekend! I have to say it was one of my favorite weekends with Tyler. However it was bittersweet, because Thursday I said goodbye to my family and Powell for awhile. To cheer me up, Tyler thought we should stay in Chicago for a day. I could not have agreed more!

View from our room

We were so happy to be here after a nine hour drive!
Our hotel on Michigan Ave...close to the shopping!

 Tyler was a champ during the shopping! He never complained once...even though I knew inside he was just thinking about the deep dish pizza we were getting after!
New purse...thanks Chicago!

After our little shopping spree of hurriedly walking to Nordstroms, Macy's,Marshalls's (yes they have a 3 story marshall's and homegoods), H & M, Anthropologie and many more...we went to Giordano's! 
Our Chicago-regular friend Sarah recommended we go here and luckily it was within walking distance  from our hotel and shopping!

 As you can see...it was delicious. It looks so think and filling but we decided the crust tasted more like a flaky pastry instead of thick bread. We had half of this pizza as left overs and we forgot it at the restaurant! Tyler was not a happy man the next day for breakfast! Yup he eats anything for breakfast.

So after our fun night in Chicago, we headed to our new home of Waukesha! We checked into another hotel that is literally 2 blocks from our new home near Historic Downtown Waukesha. So we went exploring! Friday night they have free concerts lined up on the streets and all the stores and restaurants stay open late.

 We found so many hidden gems just by simply walking around!

The next morning, in the same location, they have a big farmer's market. It was a really fun atmosphere and tons of fresh, good food! We opted for bakery treats because we did not have a kitchen to cook vegetables in yet! I had to pass by the cheese...because if you know me you know I love some good cheese.

But we are excited to go back every Saturday and get fresh vegetables and bread for the week!
 After our little adventures...the past 3 days have been filled with endless trips to Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Marshalls, Walmart, and even the Dollar Tree!

So that brings me to yesterday when our movers came. Unfortunately, I was by myself because well...one of us has to work! (Thanks, Ty :) ) And it was his first day! I was proud of him...but wishing he was there! The movers were so helpful though and brought everything in one piece.

So now my job this week is to unpack and organize and make this apartment our home. Tyler says I complain but I really love it...and he is right. I love some good organizing. I just wish my mom was here to help sometimes! But it is making me grow up, which is a needed thing.

Hopefully Landon and my mom will be here next week so we can go explore Milwaukee! I see a Brewers game in our future...

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Kiste's Lives!

People say the best day of their life is their wedding day...we can say this is SO true! We have never felt more loved than on July 7, 2012.
Sneak peaks...more pictures to come







sweet moments!

We are so thankful for the new and old friends that we made to make this day perfect just for us! Especially Ancelet Photography and the girls at Butterfly Gap Retreat.

It is amazing that a day that you plan for 8 months of your life starts and finishes in a matter of hours. There is so many things to make happen, and it involves so many people. It is an amazing experience to see the people in full force that the Lord blessed you with in your life.

And the festivities leading up to this day were almost just as fun!
Bridal Luncheon given by my precious younglife leader! THANK YOU

I will always remember this weekend with these girls!

Rehearsal


Rehearsal Dinner at Sullivan's Downtown in Maryville

Mrs. Kiste did a great job!

Tyler and I are still on cloud nine from this wonderful weekend!

....and it only continued til the next morning in Mexico. It took us a couple of days on our Honeymoon to realize we are SUPPOSE to do absolutely nothing. For the past year...I have not done nothing for awhile. It was almost boring until we embraced the nothing and relaxed.











Then we did not want to leave this lifestyle. I think we'd go back a thousand times over.

When we returned home...we were met with chaotic name changing, moving, joining bank accounts, shopping for our first home, and seeing people we love before we leave for Milwaukee. It is quite an experience coming from the land of nothing but laying in the sun and having people bring drinks to you all day long.


Especially when you think the movers who are coming to pack up your entire life come 24 hours earlier than they were suppose to. The surprises never stop in our new little married life! However, we are excited to get on our way to our new home. Tommorow we will leave for an overnight pitstop-vacay in Chicago until Friday. Any suggestions on where to eat or see? Please tell us!

Next stop: Chicago!


All I know is that Tyler wants a pizza that's atleast as deep as his hand. No surprise there!

After Chicago (which I will post pictures)...we will head to our new home city of Waukesha to get the keys to our first place and meet all kinds of workers to set up cable, utilities, and the people who are towing one of our cars. All while staying in another hotel for days because the movers could be up to a week and half!

I told you our life is crazy. But I wouldn't change it for a thing!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Redneck 4th and wedding frenzy

Honestly, does anyone NOT have a redneck fourth of July? If so, you are not American.

This is American.


This is my brother and soon to be husband. You may mistake them for 7 year old twins but they are actually 18 and 22. And this is a homemade slip and slide.

And to be honest....it is not legally theirs. They are so resourceful...these two men went to Walmart, purchased 20 foot tarps, lathered themselves up with dishwasher soap and water (along with patches of grass) and made Splash Country right in the back yard! Not to mention, they purchased a 6 foot plastic baby pool.

 I can't help but think how much they look like my preschoolers on Water Fun Day back in May!

Yup that's a butt and we saw it alllll day long. I have to stop or I may cry I miss them so much.
 
However, Landon and Ty are resourceful BECAUSE after the fun was over, they neatly folded and repackaged the tarps...and then returned them to Walmart. (I feel dishonest for them).

So Happy birthday America!

And happy three days til our wedding......except its not all happy... its stressful and its hard and its tiring. But will be oh so worth it.



In just 72 hours we will be officially Mr. and Mrs. Kiste! It feels almost as good typing it as it does saying it! I know it sounds like a grammy speech....but I could not have done this past 8 months without my mom and family. Wedding planning is a full time job and especially when you want to do almost everything yourself. Let's just say I do not want to plan another one ever again after Saturday night is over with. Maybe I will write a book about it....but I won't physically plan one. I'll help someone else with theirs every chance I get! But one wedding and one marriage is all i'm doing this lifetime! I am just lucky that it gets to be with my craft partner and best friend! (He will love me even more when crafts cease).

So the next time I write...I will be a married woman :)

I will leave you with a goodbye from the cutest face in the world!




 
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