Saturday, January 8, 2011

Biscuits N'Gravy

My husband asked me out on a date last night to one of my favorite restaurants in Richmond, Comfort. It's one of my favorite restaurants because it is a glorified Cracker Barrel. And anyone that knows me, knows the way to my heart is the Crack House. When given a food choice, I know that I am ALWAYS going to lean towards anything fried, buttered, or "southern". Fried okra, hashbrown casserole, mac n cheese, biscuits and gravy, chicken tenders, bacon, pound cake, sweet tea...


Of course I'm being partly dramatic, but Southern food really is the best. I know that my cholesterol thinks it's the best, too. On a sidenote, I often wonder what Paula Deen's cholesterol is... I'm not really sure where I inherited this passion for all things bad for me. I believe the only thing my New Jersey mom has ever fried was green beans. And I know my New York dad disapproves of these eating habits since I was scolded about 25 times on our recent family vacation for eating cookies. (That's a whole other issue...)

Everyone is passionate about their own type of food. You get near the South though, and that's what you're gonna get. Did you know that Mississippi is the fattest state in the U.S? I can guarantee that they enjoy their share of fried chicken, greens, and mashed potatoes. But before you sit there getting too smug, did you know that Tennessee and Alabama actually tie for 2nd place? That's really sad and it's a good thing I don't live in TN anymore:-)

Anyways, I just felt like sharing my passion for Southern food today. Any new recipes are always appreciated. Just don't tell my dad:-)

Here's a picture from our date night. It was snowing a ton during our dinner in Richmond. Unfortunately when we got back to Chester, it was just rain.

Monday, January 3, 2011

It's That Time Again.. Part II

I still love New Year's resolutions! They never get old. (Well, never say never. They do get old when my patients tell me they are going to lose weight, start taking their medicine, or stop smoking for the 50th time). I think the organizer in me loves writing in a fresh planner and scheduling fun events for the upcoming year. I think it seems fun and not so stressful at the time. But anyways, in honor of this new year, I thought I'd take a look at last year's resolutions and see how I did:

Previous 2010 Goals:

1. I plan on journaling much much more and also blogging more. My blogging didn't actually start getting bad until the end of the year. Then I realized that nothing seemed important to write about really. But I know that it really helps family and friends keep up with each other so I'm trying reeeeealllllyyyy hard to get back in the swing of things. I've already been working on this post for almost a week so things are not looking up for the blogging world:-)

2. Praying more as a couple. I would consider this a half-way-met goal. I've definitely done a better job at being a more spontaneous prayer warrior but I think we could always all do better in this area. I still would like Adam and I to be able to pray together more.

3. I want white, clean teeth this year!
I did not do anything to this goal last year:-( My teeth are no better than 2009!

4.I look forward to new travel and this year is no different. On tap this year:
- a medical missions trip to Guatemala with Lee University (DONE and definitely life changing!)
- a vacation with the Douglases to the Outer Banks (DONE and very relaxing)
- TN 10 Vacation (possibly also the Outer Banks) (NOT DONE and this makes me very sad! I need my yearly trip with those girls to feel complete. They went to D.C. this year but I was unable to go due to Greece.)
- a hopeful trip to Greece with the Reusses (DONE and the best trip of my life! Everyone needs to go!)
- Short term trips include hopefully going to see my friend Hope and a trip to Nashville and Vegas!
(NOT DONE. Mostly spent our weekend trips to see family or for our anniversary. There's always next year.)

5. And of course the infamous "weight control goal". We always get in shape enough to run the 10K and this year we added a 5 mile Mud Run which was so fun! However, once these are done in August, we tend to not challenge our selves quite so much (aka be lazy). Gotta be more consistent...

Now on to this year!

1. Go to sleep by 11pm every night, excluding weekends or days off. My body NEEDS more sleep! Unfortunately I have not met that goal even once this week. It's really hard when you get home at 8pm or later.
2. Cook more meals at home or at least prepare for meals better. I find that when we don't have meals plan, we'll inevitably eat our more. This in turn affects our budget and our waistline:-)
3. Find a new job closer to home. As much as I absolutely LOVE my job and am terrified of change, I NEED to find a new job. I'm so exhausted and now my poor sciatic nerve is acting up from riding in the car so much:-( (pity party here please:-)))
4. Be more consistent to read the Bible and also keeping track of prayer requests somehow. Since I am so organized, I feel as if I get off of track reading or something then I can't ever get back on. I've learned over the years that God doesn't love you when you're just "put together". I've tried the prayer log in the journal but I just can't seem to stick with it. Does anybody else have any suggestions on what works for them? I feel like if I can track my prayers then I'll appreciate God for everything that he does, not just the good stuff.

So cheers to a new start in 2011! I hope that this year is everyone's best yet!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Let's Try This Whole Blogging Thing Again

Well, it's been a busy couple of months around here considering my last blog post was at the beginning of October. Once you stop blogging, it's incredibly hard to get started again. I just felt like nothing going on was very earth-shattering blog worthy:-) And this post will be nothing exceptional- Just a catch-up:-)

Obviously, it's Christmas time and this has been the hardest year for me EVER to try and get in the Christmas spirit. I think after losing my grandmother in February, I was dreading this holiday because I knew it was going to be emotional and sad. We are going to try our best to make it fun and enjoyable while still honoring Bam, and Adam and I will be heading to TN to share a few days with my parents. Unfortunately I don't get off work until 12/23 and so it will be a very quick weekend visit.

Here are some Reuss Christmas tidbits:
-We decorated our first REAL Christmas tree last weekend and I must say, it's quite beautiful:-) This has been Adam's plea since we got married and since I'm sometimes ridiculously frugal, this was our first one. I'm now not so sure that we will ever go back to a fake one!
-All my Christmas cards (except for a few) are out in the mail today! I absolutely LOVE Christmas cards- giving and receiving!! I seriously think that I start thinking of them in June.
-I managed to start my Christmas shopping this past weekend. (Very late, I know). We had a mini family reunion of my mom's side in Northern VA this weekend and it was so fun! My uncle and his family recently moved from California to this side of the country and we were never able to spend alot of time with them growing up. Now that we're all grown up, it's a blast to hang out together. We spent Friday in D.C. touring the Capitol (thanks to my friend, Jess!), Saturday visiting the Air and Space Museum and shopping, and then Sunday at my uncle's fun church followed by a "Posh Christmas" vendor show where my aunt Jody had a table selling handmade aprons and yummy baked goodies. My goal is to finish my Christmas shopping this week and be able to enjoy Christmas week.
-I had to take my first sick day from work today. I hadn't missed a day in almost 2 years but I felt a throat/fatigue thing coming on yesterday and when I woke up today, I knew that my patients would not want me coming near them. So I called in, slept until 11, and decided to start my Christmas baking tonight. I know everybody gets overloaded with sweets during this time of the year, and I feel like contributing to their weight gain:-) We also received our first snowfall of the year today! I think we maybe got about a 1/2 inch or so but it's stuck and it looks beautiful! Not a bad day to be off work.

So anyways, that's my Christmas update! I will try to do a better job blogging even though nobody probably reads this thing anymore except for my mom and Aunt Barb:-)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Why October Is The Best Month EVER!

1. Birthdays! These are just a few of the wonderful people that I share a birthday with in October:

2. Cake Decorating Class! I'm in a small group at church and we're s.l.o.w.l.y learning how to decorate cakes:

3. Anniversary! Adam and I will be celebrating our 3rd Anniversary on October 6th. We will be celebrating for a couple of days at this fabulous place:

4. Fall Decor! I actually don't have any fall decor up yet in my house but that is getting done today! Envision a fall wreath, pumpkins on the front step, pumpkin candles burning, new placemats....

5. Halloween! I think I just like the kid's concept of Halloween with the dressing up and the trick-or-treating but as adult, I love all the candy!

6. Pumpkin Spice Lattes, Pumpkin Muffins, Pumpkin Pancakes, Pumpkin Cookies... you name it. If it's got pumpkin, I'm there.

7. Tennessee Football! It's on almost every weekend and nothing screams Fall more than TN Football! Oh, to be back in TN.... Go Vols!

8. Breast Cancer Awareness Month! Obviously, this is a great cause that takes over the entire month of October... but the best part of my month is that I get to wear jeans and my breast cancer t-shirt once a week to work! Jeans at work is always a good thing! (Sorry for the ghastly picture)

9. Fall clothes! Who doesn't love big chunky sweaters, leggings, layers, flats, and orange? Sigh.. It makes me want to go shopping right now. It's a shame that it's always more expensive to shop in the winter!

10. The Time Change! (Well, at least I think it's in October) Who doesn't love an extra hour of sleep? Especially sleeping with the windows open... And since my watch is currently broke and unable to change time, I got a new watch this weekend! (Note to anyways that cares: This is not actual said watch:-))

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Life on the Daniel Fast

Ok, I know you are not supposed to let people know you are fasting of any kind (so sayth the Bible), but this Daniel Fast is really rocking my world! Adam and I chose to do a Daniel Fast after our Greece trip for two reasons: 1. We are specifically praying for some important future decisions and 2. Because we ate like glutenous pigs on our vacation. In a nutshell, you are not allowed to eat meat, breads, sugar, caffeine, preservatives, anything that tastes good, etc. We are 8 days into (out of 21) and
I miss meat.
I miss bread.
I miss sugar.
I really miss caffeine.
I even think I miss preservatives:-0

I am the grouchiest, meanest person in the world. I'm so bitter about the things that I CAN'T have that I'm not even focusing on all the things I CAN have. I have decided that after a fantastic vacation, going on a fast is like torture. Adam is hanging in there as well. He's allowed to have coffee, black, so I think he's a little happier in the mornings, but we're still both a mess. As with most fasts, you spend the time you would be eating/drinking in prayer or a more focused quiet time. Instead, I feel like I am at the grocery store trying to buy something to eat. Not to mention the fact that all that fresh food is expensive! I know alot of people that have done this before and I am certainly open to any and all suggestions! I'm praying also that my attitude turns around...quickly. I know this will benefit us if we stick with it but I don't want to be a jerk for the whole three weeks either.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength." Phil 4:11-13

Today is just one of THOSE days. The good ones that is. The ones where you feel just so utterly content with God and your surroundings that you just feel c.o.n.t.e.n.t. There is really no other word to describe it. These days are definitely too rare and when they occur, I just feel so blessed. We returned from our amazing Grecian vacation (pictures to come) last night and due to the jet lag/time difference, we were both up at 4:30am. We are usually sleepers-til-the-very-last-moment when it comes to mornings but it felt good to get up early this morning. It allowed for a blogging/email check up, laundry, coffee, and a much needed lengthy quiet time. Rita Springer is playing throughout the house, rain is falling outside, and I am so content. Denali is still vacationing with his grandparents in Tennessee and the house is empty right now. This past vacation was really amazing and much-needed. We promised not to discuss the future, our jobs, or anything that required a calendar. My relationship with my husband feels like it is in the strongest phase ever. We are content. For the past 2-3 months, whenever I got stressed about the future, I would just say, "I'll take care of it after Greece" or "Let's think about that after Greece". Now that we are back, it's that time. But today, when I woke up, I didn't feel stressed at all. I just felt content that God is soo with us and everything is going to be good and we are called to be content.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cornerstone Changes

The winds of change have definitely been blowing around Cornerstone lately. In mid-July, Pastor Wayne announced that he and Mrs. Diane would be moving to San Jose, California where he will be a missions pastor/church planter at one of his best friend's churches. At the time of the announcement, it felt like we still had a million years to spend with them before they left, and now, BLINK, it's their final week here at Cornerstone. You can't help but feel excited for this next chapter in their lives, but it is so bittersweet. Pastor Wayne is not only Adam's boss (and the best boss he will probably ever have:-)), but him and Diane, whether they wanted it or not, have become unbelievable mentors to us. They are our imaginary "Chester parents" and a large reason that Adam accepted the job up here in the first place. It's also a big loss to the Richmond community, as they have been very strong leaders here for over 22 years. That's considered a very long time to pastor ONE church. My heart also goes out to our friends, Timothy and Jessica, since they are their "real parents" :-). I can't imagine my parents moving across the country and I know that would be hard. These past couple of weeks have been filled with goodbye meals and tearful sermons. It's been meaningful opportunities to show the Mancaris just how much we love them.
But with change, always comes excitement of what's to come. It's very clear that the Lord's hand is upon our church. Last night our church unanimously voted for Pastor Shawn, our associate pastor, to take the job as head pastor. Adam's role won't change, but he'll probably gain some additional responsibilities. And with all this change, I've accepted the job as head lyrical dance pastor. HAHA yeah right! I only WISH there was that position :-)
We leave for our Mediterranean cruise on the Mancari's last Sunday. It'll be weird to come back in a few weeks and everything will be different. But in the famous words of P.Wayne, "How fun!" :-)

The "How Fun" gang at the Dauber Dash