weekends in c’ville.

You may remember my lovely pal, Sarah. We went to New York City together last year at Christmas time. We’ve been friends for as long as I can remember and I absolutely love her to death. We’re like the same person in two different varieties. She is preppy, super outgoing, and bubbly; whereas, I’m more eclectic, introverted and quiet. But we both love to dance and laugh, we share an affinity for Dr. Pepper and buttered noodles from Noodles & Company, and we adore everything Kate Spade. She is definitely the blonde to my brunette. garland making

Anyway, I was long overdue for a visit to Charlottesville so off I went! I made a quick pit stop by my hometown and dropped my moozda off at the car spa while my mom and I decorated the family Christmas tree and basically made a big, giant sparkly mess in the house. Then off I went to Charlotteville on Friday night.

We went to this lovely little Mexican joint called Continental Divide where I had the most amazing veggie fajitas of my life. I don’t have a picture of this delicious meal because I was trying to not be “one of those” people who snaps photos of my food, but I completely regret it now. They were delicious and had snow peas and carrots! I mean I was in heaven.

fire

After a quick trip to Kroger to purchase the essentials – oreos, ice cream, Dr. Pepper, and firewood – we settled in for the night to catch up on girl talk and Netflix (we totally watched Russian’s Toughest Prisons, that’s just the kind of girls we are). Saturday brought with it a day of shopping and eating yummy foods, but the pinnacle of the weekend was Saturday evening. We settled in with our take-out, fire in the fireplace and flannel pajama pants and started making Christmas garland while we watched every Thanksgiving Friends episode, followed by Home Alone and Animal Hoarding. I swear, they just don’t make friendships like ours anymore.

love!(Abby was kind enough to let me see this picture but refuses to give me a copy until after Christmas!)

Sunday, I decided to drop in on the newlyweds since I hadn’t seen them since their wedding day. Of course I got put to work decorating, but I was so glad to see them since they won’t be home again until Christmas. When I finally made it back home to NC, I dropped off some treats for my fellas (boyfriend and puppy) and then settled into my apartment to decorate and watch White Christmas. What a weekend to remind myself how many things I have to be thankful for!

hohoho(Santa has made his first appearance at my apartment complex!)

turkey day.

For as long as I can remember, Christmas has been my favorite holiday followed closely by my birthday. For years, I tried to convince myself that I didn’t love Christmas and my birthday because I got gobs of attention, love, and presents, but I loved it because I got to hang out with my family. Well I can officially say that younger Leah was a total attention hog – I say this with completely irony because let’s face it, at 23 I’m still a big baby. I did (and still do) love those holidays because I got showered with love, attention, delicious food and shiny new toys. I loved the fact that I was the baby of the family and people were excited to be around me. However, it’s becoming more and more apparent that that whole “I love holidays because of family” means more to me now more than ever before. That’s why I must say that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.

Sure, Christmas will always be the most wonderful time of the year because of the warm, cozy feeling that’s all around, the beautiful trees (at least at my mom’s house), and the feeling that people are a little less mean and little more gentle with each other. But Thanksgiving is where it’s at. We are officially a week out from Thanksgiving 2013 and I could not be more excited to go home and celebrate it! The only pressure that comes with Thanksgiving is to not overcook the turkey and to wake up in time to watch the start of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. There’s no expectation to give the perfect gift or better yet, to make the appropriate and expected reaction to a gift. There’s usually no forecasts of snow and/or ice to ruin travel plans. And most importantly, there’s no lingering since of disappointment at the end of the day that we didn’t get enough accomplished or we rushed the holiday completely. Instead, there’s nothing but full bellies, unbelievable amounts of love and laughter, and with any luck a well-decorated tree to send you off into the madness that is the Christmas season.

With all that said, I cannot express how excited I am that I get to see my favorite 8 people over the next week and that is all due to the wonderful carb-filled Turkey Day. I hope you’re just as excited too!

Shrimpies!

Inspired by the fact that the Pioneer Woman calls shrimp “shrimpies” like me, I decided to throw caution to the wind and to make her shrimpie quesadillas. I had a sick boyfriend on my hands and lots of groceries due to the fact that we are trying to be more contentious about going out to eat, so I picked up some NyQuil for the boy and went home to cook!

Photo Nov 14, 6 17 52 PM

Her recipe is quite easy, and the only trouble I ran into was the flipping of the quesadilla but I remedied that by making half quesadillas at a time. I adapted it slightly to use what I had on hand.

Cast of characters:

  • 1 bag of peeled, deveined frozen shrimpies, thawed
  • 1 can of enchilada (red) sauce
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 onion
  • mexican blend shredded cheese
  • whole wheat flour tortillas
  • butter
  • sour cream
  • olive oil

Now for the schedule of events:

  1. Thawed the shrimpies and threw them in a bowl with the enchilada sauce
  2. Chopped up the onion and green pepper
  3. Laughed at the boy who was wandering around my apartment in my leopard print Snuggie that was held together in the back with chip clips
  4. Threw some olive oil in a skillet and turn it on high until it was smoking
  5. Threw the veggies in the skillet – disclaimer: do this carefully or you’ll burn yourself with hot oil splatters. Heed my advice.
  6. Cooked them briefly until they turned brown/black
  7. Removed them from the skillet and set aside
  8. Threw shrimpies into skillet and cooked until they became opaque
  9. Removed them and chopped them into smaller pieces
  10. Added butter to the skillet and added a tortilla
  11. Placed shredded cheese, veggies and shrimpies on of the tortilla (and then added more cheese)
  12. Placed a second tortilla on top and flipped

And BAM! There’s a tasty shrimp quesadilla waiting to be smothered in sour cream and salsa.

Photo Nov 14, 6 37 59 PM

 

 

Optimus…Screwdriver?

Have you ever had one of those moments where you have to step back from a situation, in awe, and think “That is brilliant. Where would I be without them?” I did that today…twice. Once with the boy, and again with the coolest thing I own – my tiny, pink tool set.

magic tools

So I’ve been carrying this thing around with me since college, and I’ve always admired how useful it is. It has a tape measure, a screwdriver, needle nose pliers, and zip ties. At least that’s what I thought. It’s been holding out on me. The screwdriver is a transformer and turns into a wrench! This was extremely helpful when I was needing a wrench about thirty minutes ago. Unfortunately, the transformer wrench couldn’t magically give me super strength so my negative battery cable is still lodged in there. Maybe the moozda is a transformer too and will fix himself. Here’s hoping.

rabbit, rabbit.

Let me be the first to wish you a very happy November! I love November – it’s warm colors, delicious food, and quality time with family and friends just makes me want to settle in with a blanket and nap for a while. Here’s my favorite things this week:

1. I spent some quality time with my mom shopping yesterday. Well she spent the majority of the time laughing at me while I fought back the urge to twirl in my Beetlejuice dress and orange scarf.

2. This fabulous list from Kate Spade to inspire this holiday season. It’s making me want to create my own little bucket list for December.

3. My Christmas cards! Sorry – I can’t show them to you yet, but I can show you this adorable little sticker that was on the packaging they were mailed in.

Sticker

4. And last, but not least: The Paris Wife. It’s what I’ve been reading this week & it is phenomenal so far.

Happy weekend, friends!