Sunday, April 29, 2012

This is Kyle and Me! <3

Yeahhhh for more wedding pictures being shared with us!!  It has been fun to see a lot of moments that were captured from different vantage points!!  These three are from the rehearsal dinner and they sum up the relationship soooo well!!  You know, me reacting to a situation and Kyle just always laughs at the situation/me.




Sunday, April 22, 2012

To keep this blog open or to close it - that is the question.

So, I am for real thinking about merging this blog into my life blog.

  • I am not running as much as I used to.
  • Yes, I plan on starting to run again - but I don't ever see myself really writing about my running again.
  • I will do race recaps - but who wants a blog full of race recaps?
  • It is kind of a pain to keep up with two blogs...
Should I close this one down or keep it one?!

Follow my more updated blog HERE!!

Spinach Tortellini Bake–Sunday Dinner Success! <3

Tonight I kept with the post wedding tradition of making a new dinner from Pinterest.  Funny – I had to go to the grocery store this morning but had no idea what I wanted to make while making my shopping list {and nothing sounded good since I was not hungry} so today consisted of two trips to the grocery store.  And after staring at Pinterest for WAY too long this afternoon, I decided on a Tortellini Spinach Bake.

:: Ingredients – modified from the original ::

I took out the bacon because it just sounded weird.  If you want the original recipe, head HERE!

12 oz bag Barilla Cheese & Spinach Tortellini (find them in the dry pasta aisle)
3 cloves garlic, pressed in garlic press or finely minced
2 Tbs flour
2 C milk
¾ tsp kosher salt
⅛ tsp black pepper
1 1/2 tsp dry basil
¼ tsp red pepper flakes (1/2 tsp or more if you like spicy)
1 medium lemon
2 C loosely packed fresh spinach, roughly chopped
¾ C grated mozzarella cheese, divided
¾ C grated Parmesan cheese, divided

:: Directions ::

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fill a large stock pot with water and bring to a boil. Add tortellini and cook according to package instructions.

In separate pan – a big pan - Add garlic to pan and cook until fragrant and tender, about 1 minute. Add flour to pan and stir with a whisk for about 1 minute. Slowly add milk and continue to stir with whisk until smooth. Add salt, pepper, basil, and red pepper flakes and bring sauce to a simmer.

While sauce is heating, use a micro plane grater or a fine-holed cheese grater to zest lemon  [yeah – I did not do this I just squeezed in like half a lemon]. Then cut lemon in half and remove juice.  [didn’t do anything that is in the rest of this paragraph] Add 2 teaspoons zest and 1 tablespoon lemon juice to sauce. (Note: I really love lemon so I added this to my tastes. If you don’t want as strong of a lemon flavor, I suggest cutting it down to 1 teaspoon zest and 2 teaspoons lemon juice) . Continue to stir until thickened, 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.

Drain tortellini and place back in stock pot. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the cooked bacon and add the rest to the pasta mixture. Add spinach, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Add sauce and gently stir to combine. Place pasta mixture in an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish and top with remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan.

Cover pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until cheese on top is melted and pasta is bubbly throughout. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving.

:: Final Product ::


And I will give it 3 stars out of 5.  Only because I think it had too much spinach in it. Kyle really liked it, so I will of course cook it again – but I think I will modify it one of two ways.  Either swap out the cheese and spinach tortellini for just the cheese kind OR I will just put in less chopped up spinach.  I think it may be easier to swap out the tortellini type, but who knows.


Oh and hello from the babies!!  Kennesaw is a little more alert than Mr. Mulligan is.  He hates the camera, but still says hello!!!


…And the Wedding Saga Continues

I REALLY thought that March 24, 2012 would mark the end of me being a victim of my wedding planner/coordinator’s ….. inability to keep things straight/do things/whatever.  And I am going to say that I do not know for a fact that this new development is her fault, but I am going to say despite her telling me she “mailed it” … I just don’t know.

Our Marriage License.  It is MIA.  Well…. was MIA.  Kyle had to go to the courthouse and get a new marriage license that we then had to send off to our minister in Tennessee and once we get it back, Kyle is going to WALK it into the courthouse to ensure we at some point become legally married.

You see… all this “fun” started on March 25th.  I noticed that I did not have my marriage license in the plastic bins of all our other wedding stuff.  So I emailed our planner asking where it was?  She then told me she had it and she would take care of mailing it. {me being the control freak, wish I had know this and I could have said no no no, I will mail it myself.  But I didn’t know}  … I trusted her.  I thought, how hard can it be to put something in the mail?  I had even put a stamp on it thinking our minister had to mail it.

Well.. we got back from our honeymoon and then a week passed and NOTHING. So I call the courthouse only to learn that we had to mail in a check for a certified copy of the application and license for name changing purposes.  So I did just that – on a Tuesday.  The following day my phone rang and it was the Probate Court telling me that “we have no record of the marriage” …. SAY WHAT?!  So I of course, called the planner, who assured me that she mailed it after the wedding. 


So. I gave it a few days. And still nothing.  That is when Kyle spent his lunch break getting a new marriage license ($10).  Then I had to UPS the replacement to our minister with a packing slip back to us ($50 total) …. and then the like $50 it cost us to get the marriage license in the first place  …. so one license to GET MARRIED AND MAKE IT LEGAL has cost us $110. UN.REAL.

And of course… I cannot “blame” her … or make her pay for all this chaos because she claims she mailed it.  But it is still annoying and seeing how despite my email address having my name in it she still sent me the invoice & wedding plans for the wrong bride … I cannot help but wonder if she misplaced it in the chaos of the wedding day.

We joked that we would just go to the courthouse and get married but we already put me on his insurance with the wedding date of march 24th …. so we’re just going to wait it out.  At some point I will be legally married and be able to change my name.  Just not anytime soon. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

my new project– pinterest recipes

So!  The day after Kyle and my wedding we were talking to his step-mom Cory and she mentioned that since the wedding was over I would have so much more time on my hands and I needed to find a new project.  ….well attacking the wedding room would for sure be a project in itself {and yeah. I am still working on that.} but I decided to take take my LOVE for Pinterest and make that into a project.

And well, Kyle and I were spending a lot of money eating out on the weekends and we want to get our spending under control so we can start saving more and saving for our first house.  So… Sundays are now “Pinterest Recipe Day” in our house.

Last weekend was kind of a dud.  But tonight – oh so good.  I made a Spicy Chicken Rigatoni dish and is was delish!  So delish I wanted to share the recipe with the few readers I have – because it was quick and easy and can for sure be a weeknight meal. And the best part is that most of the ingredients are things that are very common in houses. 



…The Ingredients….

  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1/2 Tbs crushed red pepper
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbs chopped garlic {I didn’t chop – I just used our press thing and it worked just as well}
  • 6 oz chicken, sliced  {I used 2 chicken breasts … it was easier for me}
  • 3/4 cup. Marinara sauce
  • 1/2 cup Alfredo sauce
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1/4 cup peas {…and I did like 1/2 cup of peas}
  • 1 lb Rigatoni pasta, cooked according to package directions


  1. In a sauté pan {I actually used our big huge wok pan thing … made it really easy to make the sauce}, heat oil over medium heat. Add crushed red pepper, salt, black pepper and garlic and sauté just long enough for garlic to caramelize and red pepper to release flavor into the oil. Add sliced chicken and sauté briefly to coat in spices and garlic.
  2. Add Marinara Sauce first and then Alfredo Sauce and bring to a simmer. Cook until sauce esthickens slightly and chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°. Turn off flame, add butter and peas and incorporate into sauce.
  3. Drop cooked pasta in boiling water for 3 seconds. Let drain for 15 seconds. Toss with the sauce. Place pasta and sauce in pasta bowl, reserving the majority of the chicken to be placed on top of the pasta. Using a rubber spatula, scrape any remaining sauce from the pan to the pasta. Garnish with crushed red pepper and serve.

Total Disclaimer so I don’t get sued or anything scary like that {remember… we’re trying to save money} This recipe & the picture above came from Tastebook … but I for real do recommend this dish.  It does have a little kick to it so if you’re not a fan of spicy things then you may want to pass.  But, this will be made in our house again.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

i am obsessed with our wedding photographer

Seriously.  If you're a bride to be in Atlanta, I could not recommend 375 Photography enough.  I had such an amazing experience with Justin from the very first time I met him at the Starbucks in Tucker and he made me feel like I was the prettiest bride he had ever seen with the most gorgeous dress and that Kyle and my wedding was the only one that mattered. And on top of everything - he had the ability to get GOOD PICTURES of Kyle J.  And let me tell you, Kyle does not take good pictures.  Ever.  So if Justin can make Kyle look good - he is talented! =)  ...And on top of everything - the compliments just keep coming in.

I am on weekend #2 of trying to design our wedding album and I have 8 more photos to cut out to make it 30, but the decision is just too hard.  I am hoping to have it done and done by tomorrow, but we will see.

In the meantime -- here are some of my personal favorites. ...And seriously there are SO many more that I love.

First Dance. I just love the emotion of the picture.

For real.  Just look at the chandelier.

My girls and me on the front steps of the house.  I just love how he got the picture symmetric. (Minus us) 

I just love this picture. I cannot even express why - I just do.

Justin for sure loves the "nature shots" more than anything -- but he makes them work AND look good.

Everyone says "this belongs in a magazine"

Just a totally sweet moment - my Dad helping me down the stairs.

Justin has the ability to seriously catch emotional moments. And he caught this one.  And I LOVE Heather resting her head on my Dad's shoulder.

Just crazy artsy. My Dad and me again - pre-ceremony.  I just love the sun.

I think I really love how Justin works off the sun.  I just love the coloring of this picture.

Does this just not take your breath away?

And this one? Sigh.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

{ Total Random Weekend Post }

I am sitting here watching Mary Poppins when I should be going to the grocery store to pick up potatoes for our dinner tonight and I am contemplating heading to Target to get myself a Justin Bieber singing toothbrush {my friend Heather got one for Easter and it is amazing} and I need to go to both Kohls and Pier 1 to return wedding presents that were not on our registry and that were duplicates of things / things we don't have room for  .... but I am just distracted.  I am LOVING the down time.  I am loving not doing anything - but I know midweek I am going to kick myself for being so lazy.

I spent all day yesterday re-opening wedding presents and washing dishes { 4 loads ... hello high water bill } and reorganizing our kitchen ... but I cannot do that anymore this weekend since it is Sunday and our trash can is already full and the trash men don't come till Thursday!  Yikes.  And the boxes stacked up by the door.  Double Yikes.  We are seriously loved and have amazing and generous friends and family members!

And yesterday I got every single thank you note written from our wedding and gifts received before the wedding.  Now I am just waiting on our stamps to make it to us to get them all mailed out.  We even got a thank you note thanking us for the invite to the wedding and the welcome bag that was given to her when she checked into the hotel.  Seriously - some people are so sweet.

Worst part of the thank you notes -- it made me feel even worse for not saying hello to everyone and giving everyone more of my time.  I feel like I need to write people thank you for coming and sorry I was a horrible bride notes to people.  Everyone is telling me not to worry about it ... but legit, I feel HORRIBLE.

I am heading to Austin Tuesday night and I need to start packing for that.  But I feel like we're not even unpacked from St. Lucia yet... but we are. 

And I am getting really anxious!  I want my photo disc from our photographer so I can start posting them all on Facebook, I know the photos are done ... I am just waiting on the disc and we all know patience is not one of my finest virtues.

I guess on the topic of pictures I will go work on selecting the pictures for our photobook! =)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Honeymoon Pictures!

Kyle and I had a REALLY good time in St. Lucia on our honeymoon.  The 5 days was not long enough and I am already begging to go back {obviously we need to win the lo tto or something}.  But… as luck would have it, my camera decided to self destruct a week before our wedding.  And since the camera is fixable we decided to just take a disposable camera with us rather than shelling out on a new digital camera.  So… we didn’t get a lot of pictures, but then again we really spent a lot of our time hanging out by the pool, sleeping in till 10:30, and eating nachos and hot dogs.
Our last day at the resort!
On the “Joe Knows” boat tour of St. Lucia!  …this was a really fun day!
We got to go into the only drive in active volcano and take 104* mud baths and sulpher spring hot tub baths.  Sounds (and looks) gross… but it was actually really cool!
Kyle and me in front of the Pitons! …and we learned the one on the right is actually taller/bigger than the one on the left!
A picture of our resort! ….it really was sooo pretty!
And another.  Kyle and I enjoyed hanging out in the cabanas at night.  It was so so so peaceful!

Seriously…. can I go back?!  I should have obviously been born on an island!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

I got married & the peachtree.

Well!! It is official. Kyle J and I are married.  We do not have our marriage license just yet - but it is official.   Soon enough, I will be a Shanahan.  You can see some of my favorite stolen from friends off of Facebook pictures HERE!!

But... in other news.  It appears that I actually got into The Peachtree.  Weeeee.  So I have what, 3 months (??) to get into 10k shape.  And with me being married and all I now have no excuses not to run and I do need a new "project" to focus all my time and attention on.  So why not make it This "fabulous" race.  ...hopefully I enjoy it more this go around than I did 2 years ago.

....But I do have the Brookhaven Bolt to run in May at some point {it is a tradition} and I want to run some Big Peach race too.  So... I can do this!!

I am heading to Austin next Tuesday - Friday for a work trip and plan on running and exploring the city.  So if anyone is from Austin or has run in Austin and has some good running routes - hook a sister up! ;o) ...if not I can rely on the handy front desk people.

Stolen Wedding Photos!

The best thing about Facebook and Weddings is that all the pictures taken from friends and family get posted to Facebook quickly!!  So…. here are some of my favorites!

wedding collage2

My dad walking me down the aisle.  Kyle and my entrance into the reception. Me before the wedding!

wedding collage1

Wedding vows and our pathetic sparkler exit! (The sparklers wouldn’t light!!!)

wedding collage

Two of my ultimate favorites… my dad walking me down the aisle and then Kyle and me walking out!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

We're Back!

I know I am getting WAY ahead of myself to already be talking about the Honeymoon {there has not even been a wedding post yet} - but we're back!  St. Lucia was AMAZING - I wish I was born on an island - and so so beautiful.  The oceans were not as blue by the shore as I would have thought - but I could still see my feet and that was amazing!  ....The car rides to and from the resort were touch and go... those people are insane crazy drivers ... but that is a minor blip in the grand scheme of a fabulous time in paradise!

I promise to share pictures soon because Kyle and I took the most amazing boat tour of the island and got to go IN a volcano and take hot mud baths and then hot sulphur spring baths to get the mud off our bodies and then we washed the mud off our faces at the most amazingly gorgeous waterfall {cold. but beautiful} .... and we snorkeled ... and saw where the Pirates of the Caribbean was filmed ... and Oprah's vacation home ... and had a true legit St. Lucia Creole lunch {yum}  .... so those pictures will be fabulous!  ...seriously, if you're ever in St. Lucia -- take the Joe Knows Boat Tour ... amazing!

Oh and Kyle and I learned that we are old people and that we have an unhealthy obsession with shuffle board. Seriously, so fun.

And I ate more nachos and hot dogs than humanly possible in 4 days!  ...Nachos more than anything!  Oh and the frozen umbrella drinks.  ...oi.  Can we go back?!

But!  I wanted the world to know we're back - we're great - longest flight EVER back to Atlanta thanks to weather delays in Miami - but what is most important .... we still like each other after all the travel woes!