Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Adventures in Cooking and Crafting

Well here it is, the good, the bad, and the smelly!

You wouldn't think with a great guy to do things with I would have time to cook and craft, but when you have him works out well.

Rob doesn't love veggies, and by that, I mean he didn't eat them before I came along.  Fortunately he humors me:

Roasted Potatoes and Asparagus with Lemon and Rosemary.  Good stuff.

Key holder near the door - Pinterest project, hehe.

Have you ever eaten Romanesco?  We have.  Rob tells people we ate little trees.  
(hint: it tastes like cauliflower)

Yeah, you're reading that right, $500 a lb. for Truffles!! No I did not buy any, but I do love when they're on the menu at a restaurant.

So I tired to make divinity.... yeah, two epic fails later.... 
Jody's going to have to teach me over Christmas.  

So begins the practice Thanksgiving Dinner.  I've never hosted a Thanksgiving Dinner.  I'm SO excited for my Dad, Jeanette and little brother Jake to come I want dinner to be great.

7UP Biscuits - not bad, not great.  This recipe will be replaced.

Supplies.  Earlier my entire table was entirely covered.  Thanks to my roommates who endured the full table, fridge and counters!

That's right, I made gravy.  Slightly lumpy, but tasted good. I'll do better next time.

The buffet on Practice Night.  Sweet Potato Casserole, Sausage Stuffing, and Gravy.

More of the fixin's.  Corn SoufflĂ©, Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Chicken, and Biscuits.

The unsuspecting diners.  Thanks ladies and gentlemen.  Kari brought excellent bruschetta.  Since my appetizers were epic fail, I'll be replacing them with her recipe.

Here's the spread.  Yummy!

Okay, the famous family Pumpkin Chiffon Pie, and a trial Poppy Seed Cream Pie Tort.  We're keeping the Pumpkin and throwing out the Tort.  I also need to try a different crust recipe.  Good thing for practice.  It was a really fun night.  Maybe I'll practice every year, family coming or not.  The diners were happy and even took home leftovers.

Why yes, those are little tiny plants inside wine corks.  Why no, I have not started drinking wine.  Thanks Eddy for the supplies.  They have a magnet on the side so they stick to my refrigerator.

Well that's it for the cooking and crafting for a while.  Thanks to the family cookbook, calls to aunt Trudy, my kitchen helpers, and Pinterest. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

What's new in your life? Rob

Lately when friends and acquaintances have asked me what's new in my life all I want to answer is: 

He's the newest and best thing in my life. We started dating in June and I'm excited to finally share some stories and pictures with my friends and family though this post.

Here's the thing though: I haven't announced it on Facebook (he doesn't have an account anyway) and I haven't told a ton of people. Why you might ask? Well after lots of thought, I think I've figured it out: I worry that they will ask me when we're getting married and put pressure on. So, family and friends, I'm excited to tell you about this awesome man, but no pressure okay?

So, what's the STORY??

It all started with baseball (we'll talk about that later), but really, the romance started with camping.  That's right ladies, I found a man with my camping skills.  ;)

I invited a couple girls from work, a few people from my ward, and Rob to go beach camping with me.  At this point I'd been friends with Rob for a little over a month.

I was impressed with how Rob helped everyone with basically everything possible.  I realized throughout the weekend how good he is at talking to and getting to know people.

I was also impressed with how he goes for what he wants.  He told me later, he knew he had to take advantage of the weekend and couldn't let the opportunity pass.  He surprised me by kissing me.  Who knew he even liked me?!  And so the story begins...

A few months later Rob took me to his work suite night.  Oh goodness, meeting the co-workers.

He works for the Nationals - Washington DC's MLB team.  He manages 10-12 staff who sell season tickets and groups.  He got his MBA in Texas, worked for an arena football team there, then the Buccaneers in Florida.

I was interested to see how he was with me in that environment, how he treated his staff, and what he was like at work.  He proved yet again he is the same man everywhere and with everyone.  He never pulls punches, he's never different, he's just the easy going, positive person that he is with me.  He was great about introducing me and making sure I was having fun.  When you meet him, ask him about 'catching' a fly ball that night...

I'm grateful to baseball and my roommie Val because she introduced me to Rob, and I got to know him by going to baseball games with her on his tickets.  (He's always so generous with tickets to the Nats.)

Birthday Date!!
Rob planned my birthday date for weeks.  He even vetted it with his co-workers.  I was so touched with how much time and planning he put into it.

We found out about a month into dating that my Grandma White's star sapphire ring, matched his Grandfather's star sapphire ring.  How crazy is that?  I've never even seen anyone else with that stone.

That is what inspired my birthday date.  It was all a surprise.  He took me to the Smithsonian to show me the largest star sapphire in the world.  It's in the picture with our rings.  The restuarant we ate at had blue in the chaneller, on the menu and Rob wore a blue tie.  How thoughful :)  The restuarant is on the Georgetown waterfront - so pretty.  You can see the Kennedy Center in the background of the picutre.  We walked along the water after dinner and then retreated when a rat the size of a squirrel ran across the path!!  Still an amazing night.
Corn Maze
Rob told me a while back what he has on this bucket list. I was surprised to find that one of them was quite easy to accomplish.  I guess corn mazes are more common in the west. By 31 you'd think he would have been to one.  :)  I wasn't complaining, I think they are fun.

I found one in Virginia and we had a great time.  We traded off choosing directions and we finished in 1/2 the time they said it would take.  Ha.  We got pumpkins and even learned a little bit about farming in Virginia.
After the maze we had a little time so we went into the little town about 2 miles away.

Another thing we match on- finding little family run or hole-in-the-wall restaurants.  We found a little little place in town and had a delightful lunch.  He let me pay.  I think that's the second time ever.  I argued that I planned the date so he had to let me pay.  :)  I always offer, and I am willing, but truth truth- it's flattering he is willing to pay.  I feel taken care of.

So I don't really love this picture, but it's the only visual I have for the last portion of this post.  (I know, you're SO sad it's almost done) :P

When I met Rob the only experience he had with Mormons was knowing Val.  She made a good impression since he didn't run when he found out I was also Mormon.  :)  I can't tell you how amazing he has been in his approach to something that is SO important to me.  He has ALWAYS been respectful of my standards and my beliefs.  He's been a good boy and now is a good man.  The only thing he would have to change to be temple worthy is to stop drinking, and he doesn't think that would be an issue.

The most amazing part though- because my beliefs are so important to me, he decided he would listen to the missionaries, come to church, and find out for himself if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is true and if he wants to be part of it.  To me - it's an amazing expression of trust and love.

I wish all my family and friends lived here so you could spend time with us.  I miss you guys at moments in my life like these.  I want to share my happiness and I want to see if you like Rob, (I know you will).  Thanks for reading.  Love you guys!

P.S. I had Lacey proof this post.  Thanks Lace!  She suggested I give a little more info about Rob's interests and hobbies.  So here you go:  (blame Lace if you weren't ready for the Post Script ;)

Some Interests and Hobbies: 
  • Basketball (he played for Texas State, coached after that, and now plays with his buddies twice a week).
  • Board Games - Rob's family plays board games, cards, etc.  When his Dad was here visiting this week we played Phase 10.  Awesome.
  • Cooking - well at  least he always makes me dinner when we're at his place.
  • Dogs - he has the cutest dog living with his mom right now.  She was from a shelter.  Love that.
Some Interests and Hobbies he's willing to do with me (again, awesome):
  • Festivals
  • Ballet and Plays
  • Picture Expeditions
  • Camping
  • Travel