food, family and lots of fun


This week has been so crazy!  Since we’ve been back home from visiting family for Thanksgiving, we’ve been so busy.  I haven’t even had a chance to recap our Thanksgiving weekend…better late than never, though.  Right?

I ended up making three different dishes to take to my family’s dinner.  I’m blessed to have grandparents who are healthy eaters, so there were several great options on the table.  I was really excited about cooking up some new recipes I’d been wanting to try, so I decided to take a few things anyway!

First up, I made this Maple Spiced Quinoa dish that Angela had posted awhile back.

This dish was delicious!  Unfortunately the picture doesn’t do it justice.  All I had to put it in was my mom’s Tupperware bowl, but i promise it tasted worlds better than it looks.  The only negative was that I kind of wished I had made a savory quinoa dish for dinner, rather than sweet.  This almost could have been eaten as a dessert!

I also made Angela’s healthy Sweet Potato Casserole. Let’s just go ahead and get something out on the table – I totally had an Angela inspired Thanksgiving dinner!  Why not, right?  Her recipes almost always amaze me, and I didn’t really have time to come up with something on my own.  Plus, I had been drooling over these recipes since she posted them several weeks ago.  What better time to try them out than on Thanksgiving?!

I totally scored big with this casserole…especially when it came to my baby cousin, Caroline.  She was a big fan:)

This casserole was competing big time too because my aunt brought a delicious sweet potato casserole.  I think it competed well, though it may not have won out in the end:(  Except with Caroline that is.

For dessert I made Pumpkin Brownie cupcakes.  Now these were a hit!

Every bit as delicious as they look and sound.  How can you beat the combination of brownie + pumpkin + cupcake?!  Seriously?  I was so happy that everyone enjoyed these, and the recipe has already been sent out to the family.  I could actually really use one of these about right now…

To top it all off, I made up a quick batch of Super Charge Me Cookies from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan.  They were awesome, as always.

My plate: vegetarian, mostly vegan and 100% delicious!

After lunch, we spent the rest of the day playing games and just hanging out.  I love holidays at my grandparent’s house – it’s so nice to just spend time together.  It doesn’t happen nearly enough.

And don’t forget family picture time!

And all the grandkids…starting at 1 year and going all the way up to 30!

My sweet grandma on her birthday.  Her actual birthday is today, but we celebrated it with her on Thursday evening after all the Thanksgiving festivities.  Happy Birthday Grandma!

The rest of the weekend was spent shopping, hanging out with my mom, step-dad and sister, decorating our Christmas tree and then celebrating yet another birthday.

We had a surprise party for my sister’s 30th, and I was in charge of lying to her all morning, getting her out of the house and then getting her back to the house in time for the party.  I don’t think she likes to be surprised very much, and she didn’t make it easy on me. I think she ended up being about 1/3 surprised.  Fun was still had by all though:)

We came back home on Saturday just in time to get ready for the Bedlam game.  The husband and I had to work in the suites taking pictures.  It was definitely the most fun game all year – even though we ended up losing in the end.

On Sunday we spent the day catching up on work and the house, and then we decorated for Christmas! One of my favorite activities of the season!  Pictures will be soon to come:)

That’s all for now!  I’m so glad to finally be caught up on everything…now it’s time to get caught up on all of your lovely blogs:)  Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and are having a great start to the week.  How crazy that it’s already almost December!

I’ll be back tomorrow to talk about getting back and staying on track during this chaotic season – it’s not easy, but it’s so worth it!

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Only one day left until Thanksgiving – I can hardly believe it! I am so looking forward to spending time with family over the next few days.  We’ll be leaving tomorrow afternoon, heading to my hometown for all kinds of fun.  I’m so thankful that I have a home and family to spend time with.  In fact, I have two!

Something I’m really feeling so thankful for this year is that I have my grandparents to go home to.  My grandma and grandpa will cook Thanksgiving dinner at their house on Thursday, just like they have every single year since before I can remember.  And I feel so blessed to be able to spend time with them.

This morning when I got up, I really was not feeling a workout at all.  I just felt like I had zero energy…but I decided that if I just made myself go, I’d get more energized once I got there.  Works every time.

Until today.

I felt completely drained the entire time, and it was all I could do to keep myself going from machine to machine.  I ended up putting in about 40 minutes on the treadmill – a combination of walking, speed walking, jogging, running and pretty much everything in between.  It wasn’t super intense, but I was moving!!

Unlike most days, I ate some breakfast before I went because I was starving from the second I woke up.  I knew that oatmeal was in the cards, and in the end I decided to keep it simple.  I love putting tons of different toppings on my oats, but sometimes it’s nice to just get back to the basics.

I cooked 1/2 cup of oatmeal in 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk for about 2 minutes.  Actually, I cooked it for 1 minute and 50 seconds, and then the oatmeal overflowed out of the bowl and all over my microwave.  oops!  I seriously hate it when that happens!

Anyway, after getting everything cleaned up, I just stirred in about 1 tbsp of pumpkin butter and then put a little dollop on top.  It was so simple tasting…and delicious!

I spent the rest of today doing laundry and working on preparing the photos I took for a family last weekend.  Here is a little glimpse of two of the cutest little baby boys ever:)

Tomorrow is going to be a busy one, trying to get ready to go!  I think I know what I’m taking as far as food, but I still need to work out a few more details before I share.  Other than that I just have to pack, tutor and get some Outbox work done.  And then we’ll be off!  yay!

What are your plans for the holiday?  What special dishes are you making?

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a race to remember

Good morning!

I can hardly believe it is already Thanksgiving week.  The holiday season is officially here!  My grandma and I were just talking (through facebook by the way…I have a really tech savvy Grandma:) about how fast this year has gone by.  It seems like just last month we were having Christmas dinner together as a family.  Time is definitely going by faster and faster the older I get.

Anyway, I got up this morning and headed to the gym for a quick interval workout.  Today is going to be really busy, so I knew I had to make it quick!  Sometimes it’s nice to just have a more intense, shorter workout and be done than to drag it out.  It really just depends on the day for me, I guess.   I ended with some full and side planks before racing back home and throwing together a juice.  We are seriously low on groceries right now, so I had two measly ingredients this morning.

I would have liked to have had some greens in there, but you can’t win ‘em all I suppose.  And this tasted delicious!  So sweet:)

This weekend was so busy with going to Tulsa on Friday and on Sunday and having a mini photoshoot sandwiched in between on Saturday.  We had such a great time with everything though!

The race was so fun and as expected it made me sad that we weren’t running and it made me want to run a race soon!  Everything went off without a hitch, and all of Jon’s work looked fantastic.  I know you may be sick of seeing it all, but here are some pictures from the actual race. Unfortunately it was overcast and super windy, so the pictures aren’t that pretty, but I think the husband’s amazing talent made up for it;)

not a pretty picture, but I thought these little details were so cute

please excuse the nest on my head – it was thanks to the 30 mile an hour wind

the husband got interviewed by Channel 6 news in Tulsa.  I told him to drop a plug for Outbox, but he didn’t.  He was cute anyway:)

I unexpectedly saw two friends at the race, which was so exciting!  The first was my friend, Julie, from my teaching days, who ran the 5k.

And the second was my friend Katie from high school.  It was so fun to see both of these girls because I hadn’t seen either one of them in forever!  Katie ran the half marathon and PR’d – I was so excited for her!  I think she ran it in 1:52 – go Katie!  She blew my half marathon time out of the water by 17 minutes!

After about 4 hours at the race, we headed out, stopping at Starbuck’s for a little coffee before doing some Christmas shopping!

I love this little Starbucks – it was the quaintest I’ve seen since the one in Old Town where I met Emily.  I told the husband that I could have sat there forever.  It was that quaint:)

Don’t you just love the word “quaint”?  I do.  And I love quaint things.

It was a great day, and we were so happy that everything went over with the race so well.

I have to say, though,  there was a 27 year old man that collapsed during the half marathon, and he died shortly after.  So so sad.  I cannot even imagine being his family.  So, we’re definitely saying a prayer for him and those who knew him:(

I’ll see you all later – hope you have a great Monday.

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i’m one proud wife


It has been quite the crazy weekend around here.  Wednesday night I started feeling less than stellar, and by Thursday morning I had a full-on sore throat and achy body.  It was not fun.  It lasted well into this morning, but I think I’m finally starting to feel better as of this afternoon.

Needless to say my eats have been pretty boring as I’ve resorted to whatever required the least energy to put together.  Fortunately I had made a giant pot of taco soup on Tuesday night, so I’ve been eating that pretty much every other meal.

Sprinkle in a couple of Amy’s dinners and lots of hummus – hummus quesadilla, hummus on toast, hummus wrap…and on and on.

I must say I am beginning to seriously crave veggies in a bad way.  Must go to the grocery store tomorrow.

Anyway, despite being sick last night still, we headed to Tulsa for the Tulsa Route 66 Marathon race expo.  The logo and all of the signage was designed by the husband, and we were super excited to see how everything looked and take some pictures for our website!

I have to say, I am so so proud of him.  Outside of his 9-5, he put in over 60 hours for this race last month, and he had 4 other clients to keep up with as well.  He has worked so hard – so many late nights, so little sleep, but he is so dedicated.  He never stops until everything is just right, and I admire his passion and persistence so much!

Here is a glimpse of the expo.

So proud:)  It’s one thing to see the results of all his hard work on the computer screen, but to see it on welcome signs, t-shirts, bags, and even displayed on the floor was just so overwhelming!

We got back from Tulsa late Friday night and ended up sleeping in really late this morning.  By the time we got up we had just enough time to clean the house top to bottom before heading out for my 2nd ever photo shoot.  I still need to get the photos uploaded and sorted through, but I’ll be posting some asap!  They’re pretty cute methinks:)

Anyway, I’m off to bed now – we have to head to Tulsa bright and early tomorrow morning to be there for the start of the race.  I hope to get some great pictures of the runners and the husband’s work, but also just enjoy the race atmosphere.  I’m already feeling really sad that we aren’t running, but I’m trying to just focus on the excitement of what we are doing!  Which is basically the whole reason why we aren’t running….so there you have it.

Hope you’re all having a great weekend!

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hye-kyoung and jinsel


Remember yesterday when I mentioned that I had something exciting to come home to on Sunday night?

Well, many of you know how much I adore the international students that I tutor.  Even on the saddest or most stressful of days, they keep me smiling.  I love our conversations about culture and things that they are dealing with as a foreigner in our country.  Having lived overseas for a year, I feel like I can identify with the struggles and joys that they experience on a day-to-day basis.  I could talk about this forever, but let’s get to the good stuff.

A couple of weeks ago one of my Korean students, HeyKyoung, and I decided that it would be fun for me to take some pictures of her and her 4 year-old daughter, Jinsel.  Now for every time that my adult students make me smile, times it by about 100 and you get the amount of times international children make me smile.  I’ve been so excited about this because it gives me a chance to document a moment in their life here in the states, and I think they will cherish that for years to come whether they live here or go back to Korea.  Also, it gives me a chance to practice taking pictures of people, which I don’t get to do very often!

So anyway, I wanted to share a few of the pictures because they are just so precious.

Little Jinsel was an absolute doll the entire time; I could not have asked for a happier, more fun little girl to photograph.

In Korean the word “emo” means “mom’s friend.”  Since Jinsel doesn’t know much English, HeyKyoung kept saying “emo, emo” whenever she wanted her to look at me or come to me….it was so so cute.  The next day when I met with HeyKyoung, she said that Jinsel woke up that morning asking when she was going to get her picture taken again and saying that she wanted to see emo.

Melted my heart:)

Speaking of pictures, this weekend there will be a lot of photo taking going on for the McCoy’s.  Remember that marathon that the husband and I were originally going to run, but then we decided to back down from it?  Well, since Jon created the branding for the race, we’ve been invited to attend some of the VIP events on Friday night, and we’re also going to be at the marathon bright and early Sunday morning to take pictures of Jon’s work (and probably some of the runners because I won’t be able to resist!). I’m really looking forward to being a spectator instead of a runner!  I think it’ll be fun, even though it will make me itch to start training.

Also, the family I used to nanny for has asked us to photograph their family on Saturday evening, so we’ll be fitting that in as well!  A full weekend it will be, but I’m so excited!  I know it’s a little early to be talking weekend plans already….forgive me.

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