Life's Sweet Journey

Friday, November 20, 2015

5 Thankful Things!

We are on the road, bound for Crystal River and manatee swimming and I was just thinking how thankful I am for so much in this small moment in the car. So I thought, as we approach Thanksgiving, I would share some of those things with all of you…

5 Things I am Thankful for Right at This Moment
~Being on the Road~ Being on the road with Babe is the perfect breath of fresh air for me. The road, the radio and my favorite guy is a perfect combination! I am thankful for the time to talk if we want to, but I am also thankful that we are really good at just being quite together. Or if I am being honest here, thankful that he is satisfied to be quite and not complain while I sing my heart out to Blue Bandana. He may call me weird, but he loves me in spite because of it (something else I'm thankful for!) The open road and no time commitments are peace for my soul!

~Food!~ Oh gosh, am I ever glad for food! And I am very thankful that Babe knows the true way to my heart is through my stomach. He knows me well. I had literally been sitting in the passenger seat on our way out of town and I was daydreaming about some 4Rivers brisket, but I thought “you know, nope. I am not going to say it. We are going somewhere new, we can try somewhere new. Ok, but really if he just decides to pull off and go, then I will love him forever and give him a kiss.” And then not only 2 minutes later he looks at me and asks, “4Rivers?” Thankful for a man who knows me well! And for beef brisket sandwiches!! He got his kiss!

~Adventure~ I am thankful for the ability to adventure and explore! I am thankful that we are able to get away and find a new place to lay our heads for the weekend! And I am super thankful for manatees and the chance to swim with them!

~Scenery~ This world is a beautiful place! I am thankful that God is creative and that He gave us so much beauty all around us.  And I am thankful that it is all free to take in. A sunset costs nothing except the time spent enjoying it, which in and of itself isn’t even a cost at all but really an added blessing!

~Flo~ I am thankful for FloRida and that she is finally back on the road! When we got her we said we would try to go somewhere new once a month, even if it was just to the local county park. Just to give us time away together. Time to unplug and pour into the quiet and the slow. Well, she missed that goal last month, so I am extra thankful for this trip! It’s her 3rd big expedition and she is just as thankful as I am!

Well, we are almost there, so I’m off to explore and befriend a sea cow! 
Have a thanks filled weekend!!
What are 5 things you are thankful for right at this moment? 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Words for Wednesday: Away We Go

Because my thirst for adventure needs to be quenched and I am so excited that this weekend we are finally hitting the road again after being "docked" for a while today's post is some of my favorite travel words of lately!
Or an RV, same concept, so I'm rolling with it (literally)... even if it is only for the weekend! Oh this quote sets my heart a flutter and makes me dream of big, big things! 
...working on it! 

Happy Wednesday Folks!! 

Monday, November 16, 2015

The Monday Currently

It was an exciting, whirlwind of a weekend spent celebrating my besties birthday (we are totally 21, plus some, and that's ok) and binge watching episodes of Mindy, so I am taking part in the Sunday Currently on Monday (don't judge ok?! I'm not, I'm late a lot anyways). So anyways... 
Reading: I am currently in between the choosing of two books; I just started reading Charles Martin's newest book Water from my Heart, but given that my reading time ability has been lacking lately I feel I should probably start our next book club book, Where'd You Go, Bernadette
Writing- This...
Listening- to the hum of background noises in the house, but wishing it was the voice of Dr. Mindy Lahiri. You guys, I have a new obsession and it is The Mindy Project. I have been binge watching like crazy and trying (without much luck) to pull myself away so that it lasts longer (and also so that I make time to do the whole adulting thing and ya' know work and clean and stuff). The Mindy Project may just be my spirit animal show! 
Thinking- That I really want to go and watch Mindy right now, "I will not. I will resist!" oh who am I kidding!?
Smelling- My freshly poured coffee! There was coffee in the pot when I woke up and I forgot to pour myself a cup, nothing like remembering it at 11:30. Yay for mid-morning pick me ups! 
Wishing- That is was Friday! We are finally bound for Crystal River this weekend after our last attempted FLoRida trip got postponed due to poor planning and sickness. It has been over a month and a half since Flo has gotten to stretch her wheels and she is itching to hit the road!
Hoping- That the little pumpkin seeds I planted, after making my pumpkin seeds the other day, actually grow into pumpkins for next Fall. They are already starting to sprout so here's to hoping the actually bloom!! 
Wearing- my PJs!! Amen for PJ Mondays! 
Loving- That cooler weather has FINALLY decided to make it's way to Orlando again! Hopefully it is here to stay this time?! 
Wanting- To load up Flo and hit the road right now!!
Needing- More motivation this morning to actually be productive! I can do it, I can, I can!! 
Feeling- Lazy! It's that love-hate relationship thing. I love the actual being of lazy (ie binge watching multiple episodes of my new favorite tv love while stuffing my face with pumpkin seeds), but I always feel like an unproductive slacker who needs to get off the couch. I know a little down time is important, I just need that cut off boundary! I just keep telling myself it's all about balance! For this last sentence forward, I will be continuing in today's adulting productivity! I can, I can... (please keep your fingers crossed for me!)

Happy Monday Y'all!! 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Sweet and Salty Honey Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds! Pumpkin seeds! Pumpkin seeds!! 
I have a love affair with pumpkin seeds! I waited as long as I could this year, but it was finally time to crack our pumpkin open and get scooping! Every year I make the same seeds. I always say I am going to try others, but I like what I like. And so this year it was another round of...
Sweet and Salty Honey Seeds! 
As if I could have done anything else right?! As a lover of all things honey, these are the perfect seeds for my soul! And they are super easy too! Just three ingredients and a little over 30 minutes between prep and bake and you have yourself a tasty snack! 

Olive oil
Garlic Salt 

I am not a measurer of things, so if you need precise, then I'm really sorry. I kind of just throw in a little of this and a lot of that depending on my feelings in any particular moment. So this time the step by step looked a little like this...

Step 1) Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. 
Step 2) Open and scoop out the pumpkin. I cut the top so that I take a large chunk out of the back. It leaves more room for me to scoop without getting overly yucky while still leaving the front nice and pretty so that I can put the lid back on and pumpkin back outside once finished. I then place all the seeds in a metal bowl of semi-warm water. I let the seeds soak for a minute or two and swoosh them around the get the stringy pulp separated. The pulp should settle to the bottom and then I fish the clean seeds out and place them on a paper towel.I like my seeds to be cleaned (no thick pulp), but not too clean (still a little orange film) because I think it add more of that pumpkin seed yumminess when finished.  
Step 3) I pat the seeds dry with a paper towel. I will usually do this twice, transferring the seeds from the first paper towel to a second in between patting (that way the seeds aren't sitting on a wet paper towel). The new paper towel will help to soak up some of the extra moisture, but I don't ever wait for the seeds to dry. I know some people will tell you that's a thing (and that you must wait), but I am too impatient to have that be one of my things, so they are still moist when I stick them onto their baking sheet (this method hasn't failed me yet). I prep the baking sheet with aluminum foil and a sprinkle of olive oil (makes cleanup a cinch).
Step 4) Place the seeds in a plastic bag and pour in just a tad of olive oil, quiet a good squeeze of honey and about two shakes of garlic salt. I close the bag and get to shaking. I shake (and knead) until all the seeds are coated, check to make sure I feel they are evenly coated (if not, or I just feel in the mood for more, I will add a dash more salt and honey) and then spread them evenly onto a foil lined baking sheet. *Note: You could mix in a bowl, I just find the bag helps to spread the honey and salt evenly and makes cleanup a lot easier!
Step 5) After making sure they are evenly spread (not a lot of seeds overlapping) I will sprinkle more garlic salt on top so that the seeds have an even coating of salt. Then for good measure, I squeeze just a bit more honey to give it a good pop and then place the pan in the oven. 
Step 6) Bake for 12 minutes and then take the pan out and flip the seeds. Pop back in oven for another 12-15 minutes or until golden brown (or crisped to your preference). Babe prefers his seeds a little more crispy so sometimes I will leave them in a little longer for him. Just watch carefully, they can go from brown to burnt real quick! 
Step 7) Voila! Just let cool and enjoy!! 
How seeds look going in... 
How seeds look coming out! 
Pumpkin seeds are one of my favorite fall snacks! 
How do you prepare yours? Any other sweet and salty recipes I should try?

Friday, November 6, 2015

November Currently

It's November people! As if being 6 days in meant you were just in the know. November is looking pretty exciting (and still very hot in Florida) around these parts! Linking up for November Currently with Jenna and Anne and for a little 5 of Friday fun! Join me? 
~COOKING~ Well considering I don't "cook" a whole lot of anything these days, I figured I'd fudge a little and go with something I prepared instead. Mixing cream cheese and mayo can totally count as cooking right?! Sure! Anyways, it was my turn to host a monthly book club I am in and we try to theme our food based off of things in the book. Luckily, I picked an easy one, The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen. In honor of the main character, Josey, I baked a treats! Cupcakes and brownies, which meant licking clean the batter bowls = YUM! Josey's mom, Margaret, frequented going to tea, hence tea sandwiches. For these I used one 8oz. package of cream cheese (softened), 1/3 cup mayo, a good sprinkle of garlic salt and some fresh dill. I mixed the cream cheese and mayo together and then added the seasoning. I used the lid to the garlic salt to made bread rounds out of a slice of sandwich bread (usually 3 rounds per slice). I then spread the mixture on top of the bread and topped that with tomato or cucumber. Then I cut a little more fresh dill to sprinkle on top. Quick, easy and delicious!!

~PLANNING~ Flo's next adventure!! She hasn't been out of the driveway in a while and she is very sad about it! So because we has been cooped up for so long she has a lot of adventures coming her way in the next few months. We are doing two mini Florida adventures in November, but Flo is most excited about her big out of state adventure right after Christmas!! We are headed to Savannah and couldn't be more excited! I haven't been since I was in 6th grade and Babe and Flo have both been NEVER! Alright Savannah lovers, dish please! What do was have to see and where do we have to dine?!

~SMELLING~ Coffee sitting in the pot, filling the house with it's gloriousness!! 

~APPRECIATING~ Happy mail instead of scary movie moments!! So Babe was out of town and my bestie and I were having one of our "no-more-adulting, lay-on-the-floor" moments. We had literally made it through my front door and sprawled ourselves across the rug right at the entry to the house. We were scrolling through Pinterest, reading each other quotes (come on ladies, you know those moments). It is also noteworthy to mention that it was pitch black dark out... when the doorbell rang!! We both looked at each other like, "say, what?!" Babe was gone, we were together, who in the world could be at the door? So I get up and look at out the peephole. Oh, wait! It's nobody! Nobody is there!! It's two days after Halloween, we've all seen the movies. I love scary movies! So, I know you are all thinking, this girl sure ain't going to be dumb enough to open the door! Oh contraire! I did! However, our entry has a long walkway, with no ability to access the door from the sides, so I figured I would have enough time to peek out and then slam the door shut if necessary. But in fact it was just a little package of happiness, literally happiness, sitting right at my doorstep!! 

That was a long build up to this moment, huh?! Anyways, I got this sweet little package of Instant Happiness dropped right on my doorstep (apparently UPS people deliver packages at 6pm and you think it must be 9 because, well, darkness!). I received the Instant Happy Journal free to review, but all opinions are mine. I love, love, love it!! For a quote lover like myself it is the perfect little book! And it really is a great booster for finding a minute of happiness and joy in everyday. Each page has a place to put the date and then there is either a quote that you can then record your thoughts on, a question asking you to jot down whatever answers come to mind or both. Each page is a great reminder to remember the blessings that make life memorable and moments happy. I mean check these out... 
How would you answer those? And don't those answers just make you want to smile?! Mine did! 
I would definitely recommend grabbing a copy and adding an extra dash of happiness to your days! 

~ANTICIPATING~ Swimming with sea cows!! So, while I am pretty stoked about our big Savannah trip, we actually have an upcoming Florida adventure just around the corner. In two weeks we are Flo bound for Crystal River to swim with manatees! And I can't wait!! Yay!! I will hug them and love them and they will be my friends! 

And that's my November currently! 
What are you up to this month?!