Thursday, December 2, 2010


One of my favorite beverages, easy to make at home!

Chai Tea Mix 
For optimal enjoyment of this trendy flavor-packed drink, be sure your spices are fresh.

Prep: 14 min 
Yield: 5 1/2 cups mix


  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened instant tea or decaffeinated instant tea
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1 cup powdered nondairy creamer
  • 1 cup French vanilla-flavored powdered nondairy creamer
Combine spices and tea in a food processor or blender. Blend 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture becomes a fine powder. Pour into a large bowl. Add sugar to food processor or blender (without cleaning it), and process until superfine, about 30 seconds. Add sugar to bowl of spices. Stir in milk powder and creamers; blend well. Spoon mix into gift jars, if desired.

To serve, stir 2 heaping Tbsp. Chai Tea Mix into a mug of hot milk or boiling water.

Chocolate Chai Mix: Add 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa along with dry milk powder to the blend above. Follow serving directions above. (We recommend milk here.)

Chai Shake: Blend 1/4 cup Chai Tea Mix, 1 cup milk, and 3 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream in a blender.

White Chocolate Chai: Add 1/4 cup finely chopped premium white chocolate (such as Lindt or Ghirardelli) to 1 cup Chai Tea Mix. Stir well. Follow serving directions above with 2 heaping Tbsp. per cup of hot milk or boiling water. 

Christmas with Southern Living 2007,
Oxmoor House, June 2007

Find this and thousands of other delicious 
recipes from Southern Living,  Cooking Light
and more at 

Friday, June 4, 2010

I heart lamp

A While Back...
My friend Kristi and her hubs moved into a new house a few blocks away from our humble abode.
In the process she, like the rest of us, wanted to get rid of a lot of clutter.
I was helping her move when I spotted this pair of lamps.  They were brown, hideous, and Kristi was ready to trash them.  I asked if I could keep them.  
You know, one man's trash...

You see, I had been looking for a great pair of nightstand lamps.  Normally, I'm not one to go all matchy-matchy.  Rather, I like to find unique pieces that coordinate with each other.  But I knew that if I found some really great lamps, with great shape and scale,  I would be willing to try a matching pair.

Red was to be the chosen color.
2 lamps with oversized shades = FREE
1 can primer/2 cans red spray paint = $19

Fabulous lamps = One less thing that I have to look for/register for

  And, the best part... it's a PAIR of cherry red lamps!!

TGIF, y'all!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A Yawp for help!

Anyone who can tell me what movie I am referencing gets a brownie point!

But, seriously, I need some help.  I have the serious itch to garden, and we have some beautifully mature trees in our front and back yards.  I only have one flower bed, in the front yard, that gets 5+ hours of sun, and it's over run by weeds and dead plants.  I need to know plants that can deal with this clay-like Alabama soil, like the shade, and will still bloom. 
I almost cried when I took the gardenia bushes back to Lowe's.
No, really.  I had to fight back tears.

So, can anyone help me?!?!

In other news, YB graduated with his Rocket Science degree Saturday.  The actual name is too complicated for me to think about right now.  Caffeine is in the blood stream, but hasn't made it to the brain yet.

My only brother graduates from High School this Friday.
I remember the day he was born...I am going to be a crying mess Friday night. 

Also, YB and I are trying to merge our cellphone plans. 

He's t-mobile, and we both like the Motorola Cliq Slide phone

I'm AT&T (So is his Mom, my parents and brother) and we would both love an iPhone.

I would put a picture here, but we all know what those look like :)

Happy Hump Day everyone!
More pictures to come soon!

Friday, April 23, 2010


Hey y'all!
This is a quick update, but a worth-while read!

As a Southern gal, I grew up having thank you notes at hand.
We write them for EVERYTHING!
I honestly met a lady once who kept them in her purse so that she could write the hostess for an event a thank you note before she left.

I'm not quite that devout, but I try to stay on top of them.

Now, then, I found a give away that would make any proper southern gal dizzy with excitement.  
My friends over at Dreamy Whites found a give-away at

Um, YUM!!  These note cards are so dreamy, that you will absolutely melt!!
My personal favorite is the "Sunny Botanical" personalized notes!

See?!  So sweet! 

Plus, my "E" would work before I'm married or after :)

Any-who, that's all for today.

Go write someone a thank you note today.
Trust me, it will make their day!

love love!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Happy 3 years!!

Today,  YB and I celebrated the fact that we have been dating for 3 years.  Also, 3 days ago marks the fact that, we have been ENGAGED for 6 months!   

Our Story:
I was working at Macaroni Grill.  YB and his mom had come in for lunch and I was their server.  YB was so completely focused on his mom that he paid virtually no attention to me.  
I found this refreshing!
He paid for his mama's lunch (major brownie points)  and I thought he was his brother-who I had grown up going to school with...he was not, obviously!
About a month later, I was at the Jazz Factory (a restaurant that no longer exists) to visit some friends and, unfortunately/fortunately, a guy who I had previously dated was there.  He started acting like a meany-head, so I went to the bar to spend time with the nice friends. 
Next thing I know, this hunka-hunka-good looking man a few seats away started chatting with me, knew my name, and was really nice.  Initially, red flags flew...
Eventually, I remembered him.
You know, growing up, "they" always said that it wasn't a good thing to meet a boyfriend in a bar...yeah, I remembered that as I was chatting with YB, my future hubby.
We literally spent allllll night talking. We went to Waffle House when the bar closed.  The sun was up when we finally left to go back home.  It was the most amazing night I had experienced yet.  
We both knew within the first month that this was something different.

Here are some pics of us during our first few months:

We were celebrating my friend Casey's 21st Birthday at a restaurant (The Jazz Factory) here in Huntsville.  

This was taken the first night that two of my best friends met YB for the first time!  He was brave and asked to have them over for a cookout (that he prepared!)!!

We went to the fair and he won me a stuffed Scrappy Doo!

Also:  within the first year that we were dating, we fully catered a wedding together (just the two of us) for one of his family friends. 
 I caught the bouquet.  His mama went ballistically happy.  I took that as a sign.

I can honestly say, that even with all of the ups and downs we've gone through, I love YB more today than I even thought possible.

Happy Anniversary, Honey.
Now, go install that invisible fencing ;)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Friday Favorite!

Our dog.
Our only child.

She is our baby girl, and she now has a backyard.
(shhh...I was a bad mom & couldn't find my camera this afternoon while she was frolicking. OOPS)

I made it through years of living, on my own, without a dog.
But, as we all know, when you grow up with animals it's hard to live without them.  

2 years ago, YB and I adopted Jovi from the HSV Humane Society.
I had convince YB to spend a gorgeous spring day playing hooky with me, and I decided that that was the day to go "window shopping" (psha, right!) for a dog...
We walked through, looking at all the cute shoe destroying puppies, then I saw her.  She looked up at me with big brown eyes, flopped her ears out, and started wagging her whip-like tail. 
"Are you my Mom?!"
The volunteer brought her into the conference room for us to meet, she ran (galloped, really), hopped up into my lap with all fours, looked up at me, and licked the bottom of my chin.

I was a gonner.
"YB, make room in the car, she's coming with us."

It's been a fun two years so far; she's still just as full of surprises. 
She got a new collar the other week (after destroying her old one).  She thinks that her collars are her "jewry"-hysterical to watch her freak out when you jingle them!

The normal look...'specially if I'm cookin' up a storm!

At her obedience graduation.  She was the only one to not scratch off her cap!!!

Anywho, that's all from this peanut gallery.

Now, go check out my 'pal Hillary over at The Other Mama!

TGIF, y'all!

Friday, April 9, 2010

A Friday Favorite

Or just a mild obsession. You decide.

so, there's this part of my life that I don't even try to hide.  My absolutely fervent chocolate obsession.  It's serious, y'all.  If a doctor ever told me that I couldn't eat chocolate again without dying, there's a very real chance that I would carry my butt over to Lawren's, buy a huge box of Godiva truffles (MMMMM), stuff them in my mouth (all at the same time) and tell the doc' "welw at reast ll die huppy" (translation:  well at least i'll die happy).

With this in mind, and my brand new shiny gym membership, chocolate isn't fond of those trying to get in shape.  However, I found an ally.  This new friend, lifesaver, and diet help is a carton of milk.  But, not just any milk, lowfat, organic CHOCOLATE milk.  I know, you must be thinking that milk is a long time dieters' friend.  But this milk, this is special. It is rich, creamy, and an 8oz glass truly is satisfying.
This is what the half-gallon carton looks like.  It normally retails for about $2.99, but is totally worth it.
Horizon is totally on point with this milk.  It also comes in convenient "milk box form"  (kind of like a yoohoo).

This stuff is a life-changer.  I drink at least a glass a day.  But really, if you want your diet to stay on track, stick with the 8oz glass serving suggestion.  It will satisfy an intense chocolate craving.  

Also, you're getting a two for-one today.  My friend Hillary, over at The Other Mama,  turned me on to Lisa Leonard designs.  Seriously, how precious is this bracelet?

and this necklace?

Tell me what y'all think.  

I'm going to get on up out of here, and drag my behind over to Lowe's or Home Depot.  This is the first day that I've been able to dig in my new garden!!  Pictures to follow!