Hearts and Flowers

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I’m excited because this is the first Valentine’s Day that the Firefighter and I have actually ever been in the same place for – in the past one of us has always been away for work. We are cooking  up dinner at home and relaxing. Neither of us are super big on Valentine’s Day, plus…it’s a Tuesday, and we both work tomorrow. It’s a steak dinner and a glass of wine before he passes out pretty early type of night. That’s the life for a firefighter couple sometimes!

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Stupid Easy Stuffed Peppers

During the week, I am all about quick and easy dinners. The last thing I really want to do when I get home from work is deal with a drawn out dinner preparation process and not get to eat until 8:00 PM or later. I’ll just wind up getting hangry, and that’s just not safe for anyone involved (the Firefighter in particular is a bit terrified of a hangry me). That is why we both love meals that are both ridiculously easy to put together and delicious.

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Year of Dates: August

When it came to a wedding gift for the Firefighter, I struggled for quite some time trying to figure out what to get him. I didn’t want to give him just anything, I wanted to give him something that would be meaningful and, ideally, be a gift that kept on giving after our actual wedding day. After a few weeks of brainstorming and browsing Pinterest it hit me – The best gift to give the Firefighter is the gift of quality time by coming up with one planned ate night each month throughout our first year of marriage.

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Sunday Lovely Sunday

Sunday’s are slowly turning into my favorite day of the week. They used to be reserved for homework while I was in grad school, but now it’s about messy buns, getting stuff done – or not getting stuff done – whatever I feel like.

Today I’ve been letting my feet recover after wearing a pair of insane heels at the 80’s Halloween party I went to last night, binge watching 13 Nights of Halloween on ABC Family (zero shame), buying a couple of Christmas gifts, doing some things around the apartment and mentally preparing for the upcoming week.

Now that I’m back working a full time job in an office, I’m finding that by the time I get home I usually don’t want to think about cooking dinner. I’ve already been in the habit of menu prepping each week , but recently I started meal prepping dinners on Sunday’s. Unlike *super serious* meal preppers, I usually only prepare a couple of dinners in advance.

Since the weather here has gotten chillier and is projected to stay that way for the time being, meals this week are on the warm and comforting side. Today I prepped a ridiculously easy and delicious beef stew in my crock pot and an amazing Apple Cheddar Brie Pumpkin Beer soup. It literally tastes like all things fall, served up in a bowl.

Now it’s time to pop in Jurassic World and relax the rest of the night away.

A Pioneer-Inspired Dinner

I absolutely love Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman.

My mom first introduced me to the World of Ree several years ago, when I asked her why she kept laughing whenever she was reading her Kindle. It turned out she was reading The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels – A Love Story. Every so often she would read out loud sections from the book that she found to be particularly hilarious. My mom has this kind of fun quality about her that when she finds something incredibly funny, she kind of gasps out the story in between chuckles. This happened a lot when she was reading.

Once my mom finished the book, I commandeered her Kindle so that I could read the whole thing myself. I ended up finishing the book within a couple of days and I was hooked. I started browsing her website and reading her blog posts. My family and I started recording all of the episodes of her show in the Food Network. For quite a while we couldn’t go a meal without some aspect of it being a recipe from her show/website. Several years later, a lot of Pioneer Woman recipes have become some of our family meal staples.

Tuesday I wanted to make a special dinner for the Firefighter. It was the first day in almost a week that he and I have been able to have a real dinner together. He has been working a ton of overtime and Tuesday morning had just come off of a 72 hour shift. I wanted to make him something hearty, delicious and man-approved. I decided to go with the Pioneer Woman’s bacon-wrapped meatloaf.

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