The Easiest Guacamole Ever

Today, the title pretty much speaks for itself.

It’s that time of year when sitting outside with a margarita in hand and eating chips and guacamole for dinner sounds completely acceptable. At least, in my book it does.

Guacamole is something that I normally just left up to the pros. Why mess up a good thing? However, it’s a bit unrealistic for me to go buy guacamole from the local Mexican restaurant every day this summer. I mean, I could, but there goes any cute summer dresses I want to buy…

Thankfully, my friend in all her infinite wisdom showed me how to make the easiest, no-frills guacamole that is perfect for any upcoming Cinco de Mayo festivities, back yard parties or work lunch.

I took this to our small group last night and there was not a trace to be left in the bowl. Also, just FYI this recipe officially feeds about 10-12 people.

easiest-guacamole-recipe-ever

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 ripe avacados
  • 2 small limes
  • 1 small onion (or half a large onion)
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. of cilantro

easiest-guacamole-recipe-everThe thing that makes this guacamole so great and easy is that there really isn’t any science or serious instructions behind it.

You just slice your avocados, dice your tomatoes and onions and mix them all into a bowl with your cilantro.

easiest-guacamole-recipe-everNext, take your limes and squeeze all the juice over the mixture and then stir. Now, the lime juice really is the key for this recipe. I think it’s what gives the guac such a unique flavor without using any salt. So, you want to make sure you have really juicy limes or you might want to thrown in an extra lime for good measure.

Once everything is mixed up, grab some chips (or just your spoon) and enjoy!

Sharing is optional : )

Where are my guacamole fans?

What food/drinks make you think of summertime?

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Solid Life Choices

Happy Monday everyone!

Another weekend come and gone way too soon, but what a weekend it was!

Let’s go back to Friday shall we?

I met up with some friends for our monthly game night. We had tacos and then a sugar cookie cake from The Great American Cookie Company which is basically the best cookie in the world.

great-american-cookie-cake

 We then moved on to another Spoons war and it got pretty bloody. Spoons were broken. Fingernails were used like Wolverine claws. All in a normal Friday night.

game-night

 Puppies were played with (I don’t know why my friend Anna Grace wouldn’t let me take little Henry home with me…) 

game-night

 After some Scattergories and Super Mario (yeah, you read that right!), we decided to take game night to a whole new level and play Murderer in the Dark because we are all secretly still in middle school apparently. With age does come wisdom though as you can see by how we stepped up our game and put blankets over all the windows to cover up any street lights from coming into the house. Our goal was complete darkness.

game-night

Pre-game selfie. Guess who the murderer was for this round?

game-night

 By the time we got done playing, it was close to 2 AM and the executive call was made that we needed more food in the form of Waffle House. By the time I actually got home and in bed, it was pushing 4 AM which meant I was pretty much worthless for the entire day on Saturday.

That was until my friend Jennifer told me there was a free Switchfoot concert. Side note: in high school, Switchfoot was my jam! Since the weather was rainy all day on Saturday, we held off on officially committing to going to the concert until about 8:10 PM on Saturday night when the concert started at 8:30. It was probably the best last minute decision I’ve ever made in my life though.

The concert was held at our local military base, so the crowd was full of our military men and women and their families. That gave the whole experience such a surreal feel to me. I love our military and am so thankful for their service, so it was great to see them enjoying themselves. I just felt honored to be in their presence.

Switchfoot put on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen by the way. Jon Foreman, the lead singer, has such an incredible voice! If you ever have the opportunity to see them live, do it! 

switchfoot-concert 

switchfoot-concert

Sunday was spent by going to church, having lunch with Jennifer and then going home to nap the afternoon away with the soothing thunderstorms in the background. 

All in all, the most perfect of weekends I could ask for I think.

How was your weekend?

What is one band you have never seen in person, but would love to?

Did anyone watch the ACM awards?

Thanks to Erin for the Weekend Recap!

 

 

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Love Wins

Happy Wednesday!

I was all set to share some great food pictures with you today. Alright, some average, at best, food pictures with you. However, last night at our small group, we had a couple share some of their experiences from a recent mission trip which kind of changed my thinking a bit. Yes, I could still post another WIAW, but what’s the point of having a blog if I can’t be open and honest with what’s on my heart? Even as scattered and messy as it may be.

Hearing them tell their stories about the different people they encountered brought back glimpses of when I went on a mission trip to Jamaica during my senior year of high school. The people you meet and their life stories never leave you.

jamaica-mission-trip

It also got me thinking about the things that we take for granted. Simple things like being able to gather at a neighbors house once a week with our Bibles and pray together. The fact that I don’t live with or know what the sound of bombs going off in my neighborhood is like. The fact that I don’t wake up in the morning with a sense of fear for my life. The fact that I’m not jobless due to my religious beliefs. The fact that I, as a woman, am allowed to have my own opinions and goals.

All of these things seem like they should be natural, given rights. But unfortunately in so many parts of the world today, there is an ever growing population of people who want to take these rights, these joys, these freedoms away.

On one level it infuriates me and rightly so. I think there is such a thing as righteous anger, and there are so many situations in the world today where that is applicable. On another level though, it just makes me sad. It makes me pity those people who have so much hate in their heart that they take pleasure in stripping life away from others. 

It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from Harry Potter:

“Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love.”

Thankfully, I cling to the hope – the fact – that love in fact does win.

I’m sorry for the random ramblings. Sometimes it’s just nice to talk about some deeper things though right? I love my food talk and weekend recaps as much as the next girl, but every so often it’s just nice to get down and talk about the things that weigh on our hearts.

So, thanks for listening. Thanks for reading. And thanks for sharing a bit of this life with me, friends!

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Goodbye Master’s Week

Hello again!

So, I might have taken an unintentional break towards the end of last week. I went to the Major Rager concert downtown on Thursday night which kept me out a bit later than expected. I knew absolutely none of the songs or bands, but really enjoyed the gorgeous weather and company I was with. Doesn’t that make all the difference? And who knew Master’s week in Augusta would be so fun? I’m sad to see it go actually.

On that note, I’ve got to give a huge congrats to Jordan Spieth for winning his first Master’s and at the ripe old age of 21 to boot! I was hoping Jordan would win. He seems like such a stand-up guy. If you have a few minutes, this video is definitely worth a watch. I just love seeing good things happen for good people! 

Isn’t that just the sweetest?

Now speaking of the Master’s, I was actually fortunate enough to go this year for a few hours. Even though I know nothing about golf, I just enjoyed taking in the sheer beauty that is the Augusta National. I can’t believe this place is practically in my own backyard so to speak. The best way I can think of to describe it is like the Disneyworld of Sports. Everything is immaculate and organized (even the bathrooms). The staff are extremely kind and courteous. It was just pure class from start to finish.

masters-2015-review

masters-2015-review

masters-2015-review

And no, these photos have not been edited in anyway. It’s just really that green!

masters-2015-review

 You know, I don’t really care to watch golf all that much, but I didn’t mind watching some of the golfers : )

masters-2015-review 

masters-2015-review

masters-2015-review

 The Master’s is probably the only sporting event that doesn’t completely price gauge their concessions. You can get beer, tea, or coke for $2.00 or less – plus, you get to keep the souvenir cup! Best deal ever.

masters-2015-review

 Although, the gift shop pretty much received any of the money I “saved” on food and drinks. Yes, this was the line to get into the gift shop. The Disneyworld of Sports I tell ya! I don’t know what happened to me when I walked into the gift shop, but it was almost like I felt the need to overcompensate for the 25 years of my life that I didn’t get to go to the Master’s. Thankfully, I snapped myself out of this mindset before I made it to the cashier.

 

masters-2015-review

 Overall, Master’s Week 2015 will be a pretty tough one to beat in my book! Between actually going to the Master’s, my celeb run-in, two concerts, and having my dad in town visiting, it really couldn’t have been much better.

I think this photo probably best captures how I felt about Master’s Week 2015:

masters-2015-review

How was your weekend?

What major sporting event would you love to go to one day (or have been to)?

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That One Day My Dreams Came True

Hi there, friends!

Can I just say that I love officially love Master’s week in Augusta? Take yesterday for example, it was literally the stuff dreams are made of. No, but seriously, my dream did in fact come true.

Remember a few weeks ago when I mentioned my love of Sam Hunt in one of my Friday Faves? Yeah, well he was in town for a concert I went to last night. That in and of itself was exciting, but then something even better happened…

meeting-sam-hunt 

Yes, that tall, handsome guy in the photo would be Sam Hunt! Here’s the background story: my friend Jeanna (to my left) and her sister Allie (the far left) both work at the Y I used to work at which also just so conveniently happens to be literally across the street from my current office. So, Jeanna being a good friend and knowing what a fan I am, sent me this text:

meeting-sam-hunt

 I was in the middle of stuffing my face with a fajita from Moe’s at work when I received this text and dropped everything! 

We tried to be as considerate as possible and asked for a picture before he started working out. He was so nice and even more handsome (and tall!) in person. After that, I had to go back to work and attempt to function. It was very, very difficult. Thankfully, 5 o’clock came soon and I was concert bound.

Every year on the Tuesday night of Master’s Week, there is a concert called Rock Fore Dough benefiting the First Tee of Augusta. Darius Rucker (of Hootie and the Blowfish fame for you non-country music fans out there) is usually the headliner and I’ve gone the past five years in a row.

rock-fore-dough-2015-review 

rock-fore-dough-2015-review IMG_2925

When it was time for Sam Hunt to come on, I dragged my friend Kerri (who was such a good sport!) up to the pit area with me to try to get as close as possible. Sadly, there were a million people in my way, so we didn’t get quite as close as I would have liked, but I guess since I got to meet him earlier in the day I couldn’t really complain.

I will say that being in the “pit” basically destroyed my faith in humanity though. First of all, being jam packed with sweaty bodies up against you is just gross. Secondly, people please put your darn cell phones down every now and then and enjoy the concert. Also, when packed in a small area like sardines, please be cognizant of how much you flail your arms about. I almost got a concussion like five different times. Thirdly, people are just crazy! At one point, Sam went and sat by the edge of the stage and I kid you not the crowd literally rushed forward as all the girls swarmed and were grabbing at him. I was scared for him.

sam-hunt-rock-fore-dough

sam-hunt-rock-fore-dough

After the madness that was the “pit”, I was very thankful to head back to our nice lawn chair seats to see Darius Rucker perform. But first, let’s take a few more group pictures while we wait to pass the time!

rock-fore-dough-2015-review

darius-rucker-rock-fore-dough 

And I’ll end on a blurry picture of Darius.

Overall, today was pretty much the best day of my life. Ok, maybe top 15? Or 20? It was up there for sure!

What are your concert etiquette rules?

Ever had any impromptu celeb encounters?

 

 

 

 

 

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Easter Weekend 2015: Barre, Weddings and Golf

I hope you had a great Easter weekend! Shouldn’t the Monday after Easter be a holiday though? I need a day to recoup from all the fun spring activities, and I’m pretty sure everyone else probably does too.

This weekend was just glorious looking back on it. It started off the best way possible on Friday with getting to go to a preview class for the PureBarre studio that is set to open in a few weeks. I am in love and cannot wait to lift and tuck everyday once the studio is officially open. Plus, I got to sport my new barre appropriate tank from Shine Athletica. It was a big hit!

pure-barre-augusta 

Saturday night, I attended my dear friend Baylee’s wedding. The wedding took place at the Marion Hatcher Center in downtown Augusta and it was the most perfect spring day ever!

marion-hatcher-center-wedding-augusta

marion-hatcher-center-wedding-augusta

 Baylee and I used to work at the Y together while we were in college, so her wedding was a bit of a reunion with all of my old coworkers, or as I refer to them “my family.”

baylee-wedding

 Isn’t her dress just amazing?! One of the reasons I love Baylee is for her BIG personality, so I expected nothing less than a big, fabulous dress from her on her wedding day. I wish I had taken a good picture of her bouquet. It was made out of all beautiful and ornate pins and brooches. I had never seen anything quite like it and it was classic Baylee.

baylee-wedding

 These are my two good friends Jeanna and Cliff. I worked at the Y with Jeanna as well and was fortunate enough to be a bridesmaid in their wedding almost four years ago. They, hands down, are my favorite married couple ever, and I loved getting to catch up with them too.

baylee-wedding

 Sunday was my favorite day of the year: Easter! Growing up, I have some of the best memories of going to church on Easter. Even though life has changed along with traditions, the reason behind my celebration on Easter never has. For that reason, Easter is still a day I look forward to each year with anticipation!

My dad came up on Saturday to spend the week with me, so we went downtown and got brunch from The Bee’s Knees after church on Sunday. I had a delicious omelet filled with kale, sautéed onions and my current BFFL – Guada cheese.

bees-knees-augusta

 What Sunday would be complete without a little Whole Foods after lunch? I couldn’t help but notice this sign welcoming the thousands of people who will be swarming Augusta this week for the Master’s golf tournament. It’s the one week out of the year where Augusta is the cool place to live. So, just go ahead and excuse me if I’m obnoxious with the amount of photos I post this week. I may just get a littler too carried away with the excitement.

augusta-masters-week-2015

Let’s get Master’s Week 2015 started!

How was your Easter weekend?

What is your favorite memory of Easter from your childhood?

Thanks to Erin for the Weekend Recap link-up!

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Friday Faves: Springtime

Happy Friday!

This weekend just so happens to be one of my favorite weekends of the year. I absolutely love Easter weekend! It holds a very special significance to me personally and spiritually. But also in general, I just love everything about the time of year that Easter always coincides with. Normally, it always falls with our Spring Break here in Augusta which is also know as Master’s Week. I have so many great memories of waking up super early on Easter Sunday to go to sunrise service at church, followed by a big church breakfast, Easter egg hunts and so much more.

This time of year just makes me very thankful to live exactly where I do. There is something about the South during the spring that is just magical. So in the spirit of the season and all, I figured I would share some of the best things about spring. In my little opinion anyway : )

1. Easter

Easter

 Yes, I know it may seem like I’m obsessed with all holidays, but Easter really does come out as my favorite holiday besides Christmas of course.

2. Eating Outside

dinner-spring

 I don’t know what it is, but I absolutely love eating outside when the weather is nice. It just makes any meal about 105% more enjoyable. This picture was taken last night after a nice walk with my neighbor. We decided that the weather was too nice not to eat outside with a nice glass of wine.

3. Outdoor Concerts

gulfport-casino-concert

 It’s no secret that I love concerts. But outdoor concerts in the spring just take my love to a whole new level. Is there a better feeling than finally being able to break out a good sundress and dance the warm night away?

4. Baseball 

atlanta-braves

 While I am definitely a football girl, I’ve learned over the years to appreciate a good baseball game. Spring signifies the start of baseball season with all of its cold beer, hot dogs, cheering crowds, fun music and views like this.

5. Exercising Outdoors

columbia-county-park

 When the weather warms up, I look for any excuse to get outside and try to soak up some sunshine. Lately, I have found myself going to some local parks on my lunch break to just walk around and get some fresh air. When the weather is this nice, it’s a shame to waste it working out indoors. Right now, running and riding my bike are my two best friends.

I hope you are able to enjoy some of the beautiful things spring offers this weekend! Happy Easter!

What do you love about springtime?

Do you have any Easter traditions?

 

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WIAW: Boston Eats

You know how they say there’s no better feeling than coming home? I have found that to be especially true this week. I have just been at such peace being back in my own bed, snuggling with my cat children and being able to see my dear friends again. 

I actually had Monday off, so I was able to meet my two best friends for lunch and it was so good to catch up. Even though, I was only gone for a week and a half, it felt like months. I’m not exaggerating at all…but I really think when I landed in Augusta over the weekend that everything was in hyper mode. The trees and the grass just looked so vividly green. The sun felt so ridiculously warm. All that to say, I am very much enjoying being home.

The thing that I do miss about Boston? The food. Oh, the food is so good there – specifically, the seafood. Although I didn’t get to really get out and see Boston last week, I was able to go to some of Boston’s best restaurants because a girl’s still gotta eat!

atlantic-fish-boston-review

I don’t know what I loved more: the salmon or the sweet potatoes. (Atlantic Fish Co.)

clam-chowder-boston

Just one of the many cups of clam chowder I consumed.

the-salty-pig-review

I discovered my new favorite type of cheese and it’s name is Gouda. (The Salty Pig)

judy-garland-abe-and-louies

The absolute best restaurant I ate at while in Boston was Abe & Louie’s. I actually ate there twice. Both times I ordered the Judy Garland, which is my new favorite cocktail ever FYI. As if I needed another reason to love this restaurant, check out their version of bacon:

abe-and-louies-bacon

towne-stove-boston-review

I don’t know why, but a lot of restaurants in Boston have Brussels Sprouts on their menu. I wasn’t complaining! (Towne Stove)

mistral_dessert_boston

Dessert Sampler at Mistral

godiva-chocolates

And when in doubt…Godiva chocolates. Always Godiva chocolates.

So, who is hungry? : )

What is your favorite type of cheese?

What is one vegetable you’d like to see on more restaurant menus?

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Back from Boston

I’m back!!!

Gosh, it feels like it has been forever. Wait, probably because it has! It feels so good to be back home relaxing on my couch after a very, very long week and a half in Boston.

First of all, I want to say a huge thank you to all my incredible guest bloggers who took over the reigns for me while I was gone. I absolutely loved each and every guest post and was so excited to share them all! If you missed any, please be sure to check them out:

Green Pina Colada Smoothie from Lakeshore Runner

Thoughts on Online Dating from Anchor in the Stratosphere

4 Things to do in Boston from Comfy & Confident

How to Reclaim Your Day in Five Easy Steps from Balancing B

Masters Q & A from bump & run

Second of all, thank you so much for all the support and well wishes surrounding my work meeting in Boston. Things went really well! Way better than I was expecting. It was still a very busy/crazy week. My days started around 5:30 AM and didn’t end until around 11 PM. There was no time for workouts. However, I did average 8-9 miles of walking each day, so I think it helped even everything out. 

Since my days were so packed, I don’t have a ton of fun pictures to share from my stay in Boston, but I did snap a few random ones that best show you how my days looked.

starbucks

 I don’t even drink coffee, but you better believe I learned to deal with it. Thanks to Starbucks and your overly sugared coffees. 

daily-devotional-purpose 

I read this same devotional every single morning. God seriously carried me through this meeting. 

snowy-boston

 How I saw Boston 99% of the time – through the window. 

gerber-daisy

 I have the best coworkers who bring me flowers to brighten my day. 

boston-marathon-finish-line

 When you have exactly one hour of free time in Boston, seeing the Boston Marathon finish line is a must. Talk about life goals. 

back-bay-boston

 Oh Boston, you are so cute. I hope I can go back soon and actually enjoy your quaint streets.

Now, please catch me up on what is going on with you?

What fun things have I missed?

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Guest Post: Master’s Q&A

HAPPY FRIDAY! 

I cannot even begin to describe how happy I am that this week is over and I get to head home soon. Speaking of home, I have one final guest post to share with you this week and it just so happens to highlight the beautiful city I get to call home: Augusta.

When I asked Bre and Ree from bump & run if they would like to guest post, I immediately knew what I had in mind. As golfing enthusiasts, I wanted Bre and Ree to be able to impart some of their knowledge about what they love. And with spring approaching, I wanted to highlight something that my city is known around the world for: The Master’s! So, I’ll leave it to the pros from here on out. Thanks so much Bre And Ree!!

Hi everyone! It’s Bre and Ree from bump & run and we’re thrilled to be able to share some info about one of our favorite sports with Stacie’s lovely readers!

We both love to golf and we’re super jealous that Stacie lives so close to one of the most famous golf courses in the world, Augusta! With the Masters Tournament taking place there next month (April 9-12) we thought we would answer some FAQ’s about one of the most popular sporting events of the year. Even if you don’t golf, be sure to check out the final day of the tournament to see history in the making!

Augusta_national

 (source)

1. What is the Masters?
The Masters Tournament held at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia is one of four major championships for professional golfers and the only one played at the same location every year. It is also the only by invitation only tournament and has the smallest number of players as a result. 

In its 80 years it has become one of the most prestigious and historical events for golf. Interestingly, since it began in 1934, the tournament has been played every year except during WWII – the years 1943-1945. 

The other three major championships include the U.S. Open, the Open Championship, and the PGA Championship. 

2. What’s the prize? 
Last year’s winner, Bubba Watson, received $1,620,000; a very big difference from the tournament’s first winner who only received $1500. 

The winner is also presented the very distinctive green jacket, which they may take home for one year. After that? The jacket has to be returned to the club and can only be warn when the player is on grounds. A player also only ever receives one jacket, despite however many times he may win the tournament. 

The green jacket is so cherished and sacred to Augusta that even Jack Nicklaus (the winningest Masters champion) had to beg and plead for a jacket of his own (source). Crazy!

3. Who’s playing this year?
A few of the perhaps more recognizable players include (from top left): Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, Tiger Woods, Rickie Fowler, Adam Scott, Jordan Spieth, and Jason Day. 

Masters_Player_Collage

The full list of players is quite extensive, but here’s the breakdown of who’s favored to win.

(Picture Sources: Bubba Watson, Rory McIlroy, Adam Scott, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jason Day)

4. So what’s fun about the tournament?

• The defending champion hosts and picks the menu for the Champions Dinner, which is held on the Tuesday before the tournament begins. It’s a dinner that is only open to past champions and certain members of the golf club.

• A par 3 contest is played on the Wednesday before the tournament and is possibly the most adorable thing to watch during the tournament. Wives, girlfriends, children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews serve as caddies to those playing. Dressed in Augusta National jumpsuits (like the real caddies), you’ll see little toddlers and kids carrying a light bag or tending a flagstick more than twice their height. So cute! Famously, no winner of the Par 3 Contest has ever gone on to win the Masters the same year. 

Little_Boy_Putting_Masters

(source)

• A legendary golfer, usually a past champion, hits an honorary tee shot on the morning of the first round to kick-off the tournament. 

• Jack Nicklaus has won the most Masters Tournaments with 6 wins between 1963 and 1986.

• Tiger Woods was the youngest to ever win the Masters, and in the same year he broke records by winning with the widest margin and achieving the lowest score ever.

5. What about the ladies?
Unfortunately, Augusta National Golf Club is so incredibly exclusive (with only 300 members) it wasn’t until 2012 that it finally added two women to its membership roster. You might remember, it was all over the papers at the time, Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore were the lucky two ladies. And while women are allowed to play the course, if playing with one of the guys, there may never be an LPGA Masters Tournament; certainly, not one held at the Augusta National Golf Club.

The ladies though aren’t without. They have the ANA Inspiration, which is the LPGA’s Masters equivalent. The ladies’ green jacket moment? The winners jumps into the 18th hole pond, called Poppies Pond. So much more fun than a green jacket, don’t you think? They also get a trophy, but the jumping into water…that’s classic!

Kraft Nabisco Championship - Final Round

 (source)

Are you a golf fan?

Have you ever been to The Master’s?

What are your plans for the weekend?

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