Archive | December, 2013

A Year in Review: 2013

31 Dec

Happy New Years Eve! We cannot believe another year is already over. Today we decided to share some of our favorite moments from the past twelve months.

Let’s start with January.

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Birthday celebrations are always fun. We kept our 20th birthday celebration low key with a sushi lunch date and homemade carrot cake by Dashing Dish. Even though it was low key it definitely did not disappoint. That carrot cake recipe is to die for.

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February was filled with lots of love for our new blender.

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and only fueled our addiction to green smoothies even more.

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Isn’t it just absolutely beautiful?

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In the beginning of February, we also received 8am bids to Phi Sigma Sigma, the sorority we wanted to be a part of since our transfer to LVC last year.

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On March 15th, we became sisters of Phi Sigma Sigma and gained lots of sisters for life. It was definitely one of the happiest days of our lives.

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In April we welcomed this fur ball into our home. She lights up our lives, even when she occasionally gets sprayed by a skunk and makes the whole house stink.
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In April our mom also became an official Phi Sigma Sigma mother. If you as us though, we think she looks more like our sister than our mom.

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In May we also discovered our love for Vietnamese food. We have become addicted to shrimp pho and summer rolls from our local Vietnamese restaurant.

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We also planted our first garden, with the help of our cousin, Kate, and our Aunt Dawn.

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They spent the weekend with us and helped perfect our cute little garden in our backyard.

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Complete with kale, lettuce, mint leaf, grape tomatoes, eggplant, and regular tomatoes.

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In June, we decided it was necessary to remake our extra bedroom into a yoga and exercise room. This is a great space for us to stretch out, do at home workout videos, and keep our weights in.

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We also decided to check out our college’s summer fitness classes, and instantly fell in love with the Les Mills body pump at 5:50 am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

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We also caught up with friends over 1/2 price smoothie dates.

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And picked lots and lots of strawberries at our favorite local orchard. One for me, one for the pint.

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In July, we celebrated the 4th with our dad’s side of the family.

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It was always his favorite holiday, and was focused around his hunting cabin and his love for his family. Although it’s not the same without him, we know he loves that we keep the tradition going anyways.

In July, we also had the opportunity to have a photo shoot with one of our great friends, Rebecca, who is also a fabulous photographer. She wanted to get some more practice, and we volunteered to be her models.

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Talk about a fun shoot.

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Complete with just a few outfit changes.

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July was a busy month for us. We also took a road trip down to visit our friends from college, and made sure to make a pit stop at the bakery we couldn’t stop googling over these past few months.

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GREAT HARVEST!

July was also filled with sad goodbyes, as we counted down the days until Kayla left for Australia.

We shared many photographs and lunch dates before the big day arrived.

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When it finally did, we tried to all stay strong, but knew the next 130 days would be some of the hardest, but most rewarding days ahead.

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While Kayla traveled the world in July-November, she got to explore a LOT.

Meanwhile, in August, Devon took a trip to Erie, PA with her mom and step dad’s family where they visited the lake, explored the town, and had dinner at a haunted train station.

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She also picked peaches at a local orchard that were comparable to the size of baseballs!

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In September, Devon took a weekend trip to the beach to celebrate our step dad’s birthday.

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After the beach, she celebrated the end of the summer at our parents yearly end of summer party!

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And had lots of skype sessions with Kayla.

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When October rolled around, Devon was busy with our sorority sisters.

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Trying to send a package to Kayla (but failing, because it cost over $100 to send a package to Australia!!!)

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and discovered that Twin Oaks Tofu is sold at a local grocery store! WIN!

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October also marked the start of the kitchen remodel.

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and a trip to Utah to celebrate her best friend’s wedding!

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While in Utah, she pretended to be a tourist and stopped to take photographs with the beautiful mountains.

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and the beautiful bride!

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Meanwhile, Kayla was on a spring break trip, visiting Cairns, the Whitsunday’s, and Brisbane with a few of her best friends.

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She got to hold koalas

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Jump out of a plane at 14,000 feet

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Lay on the beach

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And even go to check out some local breweries!

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After finals, Kayla took a trip to Bali, and enjoyed some much needed relaxation.

In addition to riding and feeding elephants!

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Exploring rice fields.

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and eating and drinking lots of really great food. 

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Then in early November she took a quick weekend trip to Sydney to see the famous Sydney Harbor Bridge and Opera House.

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November seemed to fly by, as the days got closer to Kayla’s arrival home.

The time was passed being spend with two of our favorite girls,  Alyssa and Nicole!IMG_7990

The best day of the year was definitely November 23rd, when we were reunited after five month apart.

And December flew by, with finals, the holidays, and catching up!

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And had a wonderful Christmas, that we were both very thankful for.

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So when looking back on the year 2013, we can say it was filled with adventures, tears, joy, happiness, and lots of love for our friends and family. Although we spent a few months apart, those months helped to strengthen our relationship even more. Here’s to hoping that 2014 fills our lives with even more joy than the years before.

Weekend Snapshots

30 Dec

Wow, today we realized that this is the last weekend of 2013. This weekend is also the last Friday, Saturday and Sunday we will spend as 20 year olds. This time next week we will be 21! We had a pretty low-key weekend filled with lots of niquil, tissues, green smoothies and chicken noodle soup. Our mom was sick over Christmas and we were hoping to avoid catching her cold but it looks like Devon was unsuccessful. Now that the last Monday of 2013 has arrived, here are some pictures from our weekend.

We spent Friday afternoon doing what we do best, shopping. More importantly, finding good deals. The after Christmas sales were pretty great this year and we may have purchased a couple things we really didn’t need. But who turns down $14 flannels, $15 gap sweaters, and $3 Fossil iphone cases? Yep, nobody.
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We also checked out the 50% off Christmas section of Target. It is the best time to stock up on wrapping paper, gift tags, tape, and holiday bows for next year at just a fraction of the cost. We walked away with over 10 rolls of wrapping paper, because we could not pick which ones were our favorite! Does anyone else take the time to purchase clearance Christmas supplies for the following year?

Homemade chicken soup for the win with Dr. Kraker’s on the side. Have you tried his apple oat crunch crackers yet? If not, check out our local Marshals. They rock.
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Have we mentioned that we love kale smoothies? Yep, moving on.
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Sunday morning we started off the day with a huge bowl of egg white oats topped with a diced apple and peanut butter with XL cups of coffee on the side.
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After a long weekend of working retail and feeling crappy both Saturday and Sunday we ended the weekend on a good note with a pho date with our mom and step-dad. The waitress at our local vietnamese restaurant has our order memorized, 2 large shrimp pho please.
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There’s nothing a large bowl of pho can’t fix.

We spent the rest of Sunday night relaxing, meal planning for the upcoming week, and catching up on Greys. We’re currently on Season 5 and loving every single episode!

What was your favorite moment from this weekend?

Friday Favorites #4

27 Dec

Happy Friday! With the holiday spirit all around us, so many things are filling our lives with joy lately! Here are some of the things that are making our lives extra special these past few days.

Buddha Bowls.

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These bowls are perfect and rest naturally in the palm of your hand. They are pretty much perfect for eating just about anything out of them. We love to use them for yogurt, oatmeal, and soup!

Pink Sea Salt.

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A couple month ago we snagged this container of pink sea salt at TJ Maxx and are in love. Just a dash on top of anything takes a dish from great to amazing.

XL Containers of Almond Butter.

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We love MaraNatha’s almond butter and were pretty disappointed when we went to pick up a container at our local Cosco not once, but twice, and found out they were out of stock both times! When they finally got back in stock we picked up two just to make sure we would be okay for a few weeks or so. We love almond butter and for $7 a container, you can’t beat Cosco’s price anywhere!

Vanilla Almond Hand Lotion.

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We opened these fabulous hand lotions from Anthropology on Christmas morning and are already obsessed. The aroma is to die for and the lotion makes our hands super smooth.

Aroma Professional Rice Cooker.

We’ve been eyeing rice cookers for a while now and were ecstatic to open one on Christmas morning from our step siblings. We haven’t used it yet but were excited to try large batches of brown rice, bulgur wheat, quinoa, and oatmeal!

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We hope you all have a wonderful weekend. We’re heading out to the mall this afternoon to do some after Christmas shopping! We hope we find some good deals. This weekend we’re planning on trying out our new rice cooker. Does anyone have any rice cooker tips for us? 

Bits and Pieces of Christmas

26 Dec

This year we spent Christmas with our mom and step dad’s family.  On Christmas eve we spent the day watching Christmas movies, prepping food for Christmas, and wrapping last minute gifts. We also spent the day tracking UPS, hoping to have one very last gift delivered before Christmas. Unfortunately, the second half of our package never arrived! We were a little upset, but realized that there are more important things on Christmas than being mad over a silly little gift anyways.

As tradition goes, we always open one gift on Christmas eve. This year the first gift was extra special. Our mother took all the home videos our father took when we were younger and got them made into dvd’s. Let’s just say we spent the remainder of christmas eve watching our eight year old selves dance in our basement to Brittany Spears, and open Christmas presents.
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Christmas Eve tree
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The favorite gift of the year goes to the bread maker Devon received. We are pretty excited to never ever buy bread again.
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Knowing we were having a big Christmas dinner we went light on lunch with a homemade soup and fresh whole grain bread.
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Picture time. One of our new years resolutions is to take more family pictures.
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Us with the only  man we need this Christmas. Micker’s is still hanging in there after all these years. This is our 13th Christmas together.
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We love those two. They are the best. Ignore the fact that our family is practically models for J.Crew. We’re  a little obsessed.
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Christmas spread. We made the vegan holiday meal from the blog Oh She Glows. Kale salad, mashed sweet potatoes, lentil and mushroom balls, cranberry sauce, and fresh green beans on the side! It was a hit, even with our meat eating relatives.
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All in all, it was a wonderful holiday. Although we both feel that the holidays are a little hard without our dad, we both agree that this Christmas was one of the best we have had since our dad passed away. We hope you all had a fabulous Christmas surrounded by your family and friends as well. If traveling today, we wish that you arrive at your destination safely.

xoxo
D&K

Merry Christmas

25 Dec

Merry Christmas, from our family to yours.

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Moroccan Chickpea Soup

19 Dec

If you haven’t noticed yet, we love soup.

Both of our Pinterest accounts have their own board just for soup, to keep track of our favorite recipes and the ones we want to try ASAP.

Kayla’s board can be found here: soups, stews, and chili!

Devon’s board can be found here: soup, soup, and more soup!

With so many new recipes pinned on both of our boards, choosing the next soup recipe to make is always a challenge. After lots of discussion we finally chose a soup from one of our new favorite blogs, The First Mess.

This soup is super flavorful and a fun twist on the typical chickpea soup recipe. The spice combination of cinnamon, cumin, and coriander make for a mind blowing flavor explosion in your mouth.

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If you’re looking for a new soup recipe to try, we promise you won’t be disappointed by this one. Head on over to her blog to check out this amazing soup recipe. While you’re there make sure to check out a couple of other recipes were just dying to make over the next few weeks.

The first, is this raw breakfast crumble. It’s a mix of almonds, dates, cinnamon, honey, and fruit that we think would make the perfect breakfast bowl.

Next up, is a stuffed sweet potato with almonds, brown rice, and roasted chickpeas. We love sweet potatoes, we love chickpeas, and we can’t wait to try this combination. It’s one of Laura’s favorite post-workout meals, with a mix of both carbs and protein.

The last, is this chia seed pudding recipe. We found two combinations on her blog, a vanilla raspberry and chocolate version. The raspberry chia pudding recipe, incorporates almonds, chia seeds, raspberries, vanilla, water, and agave to serve a whole bunch of people. The other, is a chocolate chia seed pudding with cacoa powder, maple syrup, and milk with a handful of wholesome granola. This version, perfect for Devon, and the other perfect for Kayla.

So who’s coming over to make a few recipes with us next week? Both chia seed recipes serve more than one!

xoxo

WIAW Winter Break Edition

18 Dec

Hey guys, happy Wednesday! We hope you all are having a fabulous week! Can you believe there are only 6 days until Christmas? Yeah, we can’t either. All our Christmas shopping is officially done and our gifts are wrapped and already waiting under the tree!

If you ask us what our favorite part about winter break is, we definitely would say it is cooking and getting creative in the kitchen. During the semester our busy schedules make it hard to be creative and try new recipes but our schedules are wide open right now and we’re definitely taking advantage!

It’s Wednesday so today we are going to share with you all what we’ve been eating lately! Don’t forget to head on over to Peas and Crayons to check out what everyone else is munching on lately. We love Wednesday’s, and WIAW is definitely our favorite blog link up ever.

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We were definitely creative yesterday, especially with breakfast.

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A banana split for breakfast? Don’t mind if we do!

Overnight oats poured over a sliced banana topped with drippy almond butter, homemade quinoa granola, and shredded coconut. Best idea ever.

Lunch was an arugula salad paired with a fresh and juicy apple.

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We made a big salad for lunches this week based off of Kath’s beet salad recipe. We tossed arugula with roasted cinnamon and cayenne sweet potatoes, chickpeas, pomegranate arils, bulgur wheat, and sunflower seeds.

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Around 4pm our stomachs were growling and we had peanut butter cookie Lara bars to hold us over until dinner!

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We usually are not big pasta fans but we decided to give it a try and let’s just say we may be bringing pasta back into our dinner rotations. We always feel that a serving of pasta isn’t very filling but we bulked it up with kale, cauliflower, grape tomatoes, and chicken.

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We’re hooking on watching all 9 seasons of Grey’s Anatomy during winter break. We are currently on Season 4 and cannot stop watching!!Greys

In between episodes we snacked on siggi’s plain yogurt (love the ingredients list btw, just skim milk), a 1/2 of a crumbled trader joe’s blueberry bran muffin, banana slices and pomegranate arils.

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And maybe one or two spoonfuls of this baby. Our mom brought us back a jar from her weekend business trip to Boston. She’s the best!

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Yesterday was definitely a good food day. We hope these photos inspire you all to add lots of vegetables to your next pasta dish, to go get in your car and buy those trader joe bran muffins, and to possibly spark your interest in becoming as obsessed with Grey’s Anatomy as we are.

Do you watch Grey’s Anatomy or have a series you just cannot stop watching?