Happy Birthday Steinbeck!

Thanks to the Google Doodle, I learned that today is one of my favorite authors’ birthday!

John Steinbeck would be 112 today!

Look at that Pulitzer Prize pretty boy!

Look at that Pulitzer Prize pretty boy!

Never read a Steinbeck novel? You should!

I’ve read three: The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, and The Pearl. 

 

Grapes of Wrath

Growing up in Oklahoma, reading Grapes is like a rite of passage. You have to do it! Its part of our history and culture (my grandfather actually traveled to California when he was a kid to pick fruit during The Great Depression). This heart-wrenching tale of drought, hardships, and the changing world from farmer to industry is an American classic. 

 

Mice and MenI read Of Mice and Men in high school. Not going to lie, I remember feeling super depressed after reading it. But, I think that was kind of what Steinbeck was going for. Also set during The Great Depression, Mice is a story of two men, George and Lennie, who are desperately trying to survive one of the hardest times in our nation’s history. They travel through California, looking for some land that George can farm and Lennie can raise (and pet) rabbits. I won’t spoil the end for you if you haven’t read it, but be warned: buy tissues.

 

The PearlThe Pearl is a short read, only about 90 pages! The story starts with Coyotito, a young boy living on the shores of Mexico, getting stung by a scorpion. Unable to pay the doctor, Coyotito’s father, Kino, looks for anything he can find of value to pay the doctor to heal his son. Kino finds an enormous pearl and decides to use it to pay the doctor, but not without showing it off first. The people of Kino’s impoverished village grow envious of the pearl and soon Kino fears for his own life. This is definitely a must read! And its so short you could be finished in the time it takes to watch tonight’s all-new Vampire Diaries! (Come on, people, that’s what a DVR is for!)

 

What about you? Have you read anything by Steinbeck? What’s your fave?

 

 

Marathon Training Update/Running Playlist

So, as you may know, I decided to run the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon this year as part of my 30 by 30 list.

When I first started training, I was like, “Oh yeah! I GOT this!” and was super excited and energetic.

lets get down to business

But now that I’m halfway through with training, I’m starting to wonder why I signed up for this thing in the first place. Waking up at 6:00 a.m. on Saturdays to run long distances and then dealing with the constant exhaustion (and inability to stop eating…seriously, marathon training makes you hungry ALL. THE. TIME.)

i hate this running

But, I know that it’ll be all worth it in the end when I get that medal and that green shirt that says “Finisher” on the back! So I’ve got to keep going. And nothing helps get me pumped up more than my running playlist!  If you’re starting on a goal to run this year, be it a marathon, half marathon, 5K, whatevs, I thought I’d share the tunes that psyche me up during the hours of grueling runs.

Tell the World — Eric Hutchinson

Upbeat and peppy, this song actually makes me smile when I run.

Bootylicious — Destiny’s Child

Since having a baby, I jiggle a lot more when I run now. Which, thanks to Beyonce and the girls, I’m not ashamed about!

Fighter–Christina Aguilera

This totally makes me feel like I could karate chop someone without missing a beat on my run.

Roar — Katy Perry

I’ve got the eye of the Tiger, a fighter, dancin’ through the fire. 

Get the Girl Back — Hanson

Because reasons.

Bad Blood — Neil Sedaka

Again, because reasons.

Go Your Own Way — Fleetwood Mac

The rolling beat on this keeps me going!

Kings and Queens — Audio Adrenaline

OMG. Watch this video and try not to cry. And also try not to let it inspire you to keep going even though you want to give up.

Do you have any songs that amp you up for a run?

Try It Tuesday

Remember when the cold went away and we all rejoiced? Yeah. That was great.

Enter: this week. Its cold. Its gray. I. HATE. IT.

The only saving grace about this dreary weather is today’s Try it Tuesday! Its warm, its yummy, and it makes being cooped up inside totes worth it.

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Ooooohhhh yeeeeaahhhh! (Full disclosure: my sister made the monkey bread. And it was AWESOME!)

Here’s what you need:

24 frozen Rhodes Rolls

1 cup brown sugar

1 box of butterscotch Jell-O pudding (not the instant!)

1/4 cup white sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1 stick butter

 

First, Bridget sprayed a bundt pan with Pam and dropped all the rolls inside.

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Then, she mixed the brown sugar and pudding mix together and sprinkled it over the frozen rolls.

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Then, she added the white sugar and cinnamon on top of that, as well as the melted stick of butter.

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She let the rolls rise (a few hours) and then baked the monkey bread at 350 for 30 minutes.

IMG_7487 (2)(That pic was taken before the baking had commenced. Look how much those bad boys rose!)

 

GUYS. This was SO. STINKING. GOOD. The only thing that could have made it better was if I remembered to make coffee with it. I didn’t get a chance to take a picture after it was finished baking because it was eaten THAT fast! We are DEFINITELY trying this again!

 

 

Fan Girl Friday

We’ve made it to another Friday, people! Woo! 

And I’ve rounded up some awesome finds to get your weekend started off with fandom-filled frivolity! 

Are you snowed in and looking for a little self-growth and some sweet snacks? Then you DEFINITELY need this awesome candy dish

Got my mind on my candy and my candy on my mind.

Got my mind on my candy and my candy on my mind.

 

Looking for a way to pull in some extra cash? There’s always money in the banana stand! And what better way to make Bluth’s Famous Dipped bananas than with this apron? 

Bluth's Bananas. Best Ever.

Bluth’s Bananas. Best Ever.

 

Know what time it is? Trek time! Check out this awesome Star Trek the Original Series watch from ThinkGeek! Keep time as accurately as Spock, but rock it like Kirk. 

Star Date: Half Past Six.

Star Date: Half Past Six.

 

Ever wonder what it would be like if your favorite sci-fi movies were made into a children’s book? So did Josh Cooley, an animator over at Pixar! When he’s not creating pictures of jumping lamps, he’s drawing these gems

kid books

 

 

 

alien

 

And with that image, I bid you adieu until next week! 

 

 

Its Quiz Time

Here lately, my News Feed has been exploding with quizzes.

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Quizzes on every subject matter: Which Joss Whedon Heroine Are You(Inarra!), How Would You Do in the Hunger Games? (death by poisonous food), and even What’s Your Inner Potato? (seriously…and I’m a baked one if you were wondering.)

But my favorite quiz, by far, has to be this one.

Seriously.

Click it.

You will not be sorry.

 

 

And THAT’s Thursday, people. See you tomorrow!

Being An Adult Is Hard

So, if you follow me on Facebook (or Twitter, or speak to me) you know I’m so unbelievably done with apartment life. There’s smoke seeping in through the breaker box, spiders everywhere, and noisy neighbors. Lord have mercy, do we have noisy neighbors.

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Since our lease is up in April (and I REALLY don’t want to re-up), we’ve sort of started our home search.

And by “sort of” I mean we’ve downloaded a crap-load of apps:

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We’ve also made a list of the things that we want out of a house:

A-Not-Haunted-House-Kristina

 

 

 

Annnndddd…. that’s about it.

We’re not really sure what to do. I mean, we’ve made an appointment with the bank, but that’s not til next week. We really have no idea what we’re doing. People keep saying stuff like “short sell” and “escrow” and we’re over here like:

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I think we’re nervous to get stuff rolling because we’re scared we won’t be able to afford anything short of a cardboard box.

Can't afford this place

 

 

Or we’ll get a really good deal and get stuck with a piece of junk.

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Sigh. 

Hopefully we’ll be able to find a place that we can afford that isn’t in a scary neighborhood or a total suck-fest. Or maybe we could just crash with you guys, huh? Any takers? Anyone?

 

Try It Tuesday

There are many things I love. Family, friends, spring mornings. And also the beautiful, wonderful, life-altering NUTELLA.

When I tried Nutella for the first time (about 5 years ago) my life was forever changed. It was as though the angels hand-delivered this hazelnut delicacy to me.

 

So when I saw this recipe on Pinterest, I was ecstatic. Like this:

My sentiments exactly, boys.

My sentiments exactly, boys.

 

 

And you only need four ingredients:
1 Cup of Nutella

1 Egg

½ Cup of Sugar

1 Cup of Flour

 

 

 

Here’s what to do:

 

Preheat your oven to 350*. Then, in a medium size bowl, mix the sugar, egg, and flour (its going to be a bit crumbly)

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After that, add the Nutella and mix well.

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Roll the dough into balls and place them a greased cookie sheet. (I read the instructions wrong and pressed them with a fork before I put them in the oven. You’re supposed to wait until after they’ve baked.)

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Bake the cookies for 5-7 minutes and then let them cool.

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I had to use half wheat flour and half white flour, so they turned out a little crispier than I thought they would. Annddd…. They were a bit grainy. Womp, womp. I’m sure if I use all white flour then they’ll turn out better!

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Has anyone ever made these before?

President’s Day

Happy federal-workers-get-a-day-off-and-there’s-lots-of-sales Day!

Er, I mean, Happy President’s Day!

 

If you’re like me, you’re not entirely sure what this holiday about. And, if you’re like others, you’re using it as an excuse to get sloshed.

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I honestly know nothing about this holiday. And, what’s worse, I hardly know anything about our country’s past leaders.

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But, thankfully, I found something that could help us all out, with the help of some of my favorite cartoon characters. (Its a little dated, but, you get the picture.)

 

Hope your President’s Day is Commander-In-Chief of Fun!

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Fan Girl Friday

Ermagherd! Erts Verlentine’s Der!

Got something special planned for your someone special?

Huff the Hubs and I are playin’ it low-key this year. He’s cooking me dinner and then we’re going to play the board game I got him! I know; we’re livin’ the life, right?

What are you up to? Got plans? Oh yes, you do. You’re going to plop in front of your computer and check out the awesome things I found for you for this week’s Fan Girl Friday!

Guys.

Did you know that George Lucas and Mark Hamill have a contest going to where you can win a trip for two to Skywalker Ranch in California, complete with meet and greet with GL?! AND, you’ll get to hang with Luke Skywalker himself! All you’ve got to do is enter to win! Here’s Mark Hamill to tell you more!

 

This year for Huff the Hubs’ birthday, he said he wanted an RC helicopter. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any in time. I’m thinking I may have to get this for him for Christmas:

Doctor not included.

Doctor not included.

Its your own flying TARDIS! It stands 3″ tall and has a vertical takeoff and landing. But you have to provide the sound effects (vrompf, wrompf!).

 

Speaking of the TARDIS, did you know that there is a cafe in Istanbul dedicated solely to The Doctor? No joke! Its called The TARDIS Cafe!

"I'll have the fish fingers and custard."

“I’ll have the fish fingers and custard.”

 

I’m starting to wish I would’ve seen this next find about a week ago. That way, I could’ve told HtH to snag me one for Valentine’s Day! What better way to show your nerd-girl some love than with this adorable Star Wars pajama shirt?

Our love is intergalactic.

Our love is intergalactic.

 

I hope your Valentine’s Day is awesome! Show people some love…

MN36oJhold-hands-phone-valentines-day-ecards-someecards

 

 

 

 

Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Ideas

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, people. Do you have your gifts yet? If you’re like me, you know what you’re getting your significant other, you just have to wait for payday (which, consequently, is tomorrow). But for those of you that need some help and need it fast, have no fear!

Here are just a few ideas to help you make tomorrow great for your sweetie:

 

Cook a Valentine-themed breakfast!

Sizzlin' sweet!

Sizzlin’ sweet!

I know mornings are hectic, but trust me when I say that waking up a little bit earlier and preparing these babies will definitely make your honey feel loved! Plus, you can never go wrong with bacon. Its meat candy.

 

Go DIY 

The perfect gumball machine!

The perfect gumball machine!

Pinterest is FULL of quick and easy (and inexpensive) do-it-yourself gift ideas! Like this ADORABLE gumball machine made from dollar store materials! A small flower pot, a quick paint job, and some Dove chocolates and you’re set! (Plus, you’ll totes score extra points by making something. Women like that crap. Trust me.)

 

Add love notes to lunch!

Snacks are the way to anyone's heart.

Snacks are the way to anyone’s heart.

Before Huff the Hubs and I had a baby, I used to make him a sandwich for lunch everyday and write a little note. Its been months since I’ve done that (womp, womp) but he always said how much he liked it! Maybe take a few minutes tonight, pack your lovey’s lunch, and add these cute printable tags to the different treats!

 

Seek professional help. 

lastminute

No, not that kind of professional help. I’m talking about The Dating Divas! They have countless resources for creating awesome dates for you and your honey! I’ve used a lot of their ideas in the past and HtH loved them all!

 

And, if worse comes to worse, you can always bake a cake.

A lovely sentiment.

A lovely sentiment.