Cupcakes and Sunshine: August 2013

Friday, August 30, 2013

Friday Favorites and a Cookie the Size of my Face

Happy, happy Friday! 

This week completely flew by. And I'm totally fine with that because I have been looking forward to this 3-day weekend. 

 
Thursday night, Carly and I headed out to Cine' Cinemas in Athens. Cine' Cinemas "screens a variety of intriguing films from a broad spectrum of countries and cultures." We saw "The Spectacular Now" and it was quite spectacular. I loved it! Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley did a fantastic job. Their characters seemed so real and down-to-earth. Plus, the film was shot in Athens. It was so neat being able to see familiar streets and buildings throughout the movie. 

Today after classes, I headed over to Earthfare to pick up a giant cookie the size of my face...


...and I picked out a little red and black dress because next weekend is the first home game in Athens. (Let me just throw out a GO DAWGS).



Here are some Friday favorites for ya...

Currently fangirling over Pinch of Yum's delicious recipes.

Um...check out these zucchini pancakes. Who woulda thunk?

 And those chocolate caramel oatmeal bars. Oh my word. I am making them.


Chicken Enchilada Casserole? How perfect for those busy nights.


And is anyone else absolutely ecstatic that it is pumpkin spice latte season again? 


Which also means...
Source

I can not wait to get my hands on a few or few hundred of these candles.
It is never to early to begin the fall season. 


And finally, check out this wreath how-to. I am excited to get one of these on our front door. I think it will look good with our wonderful welcome mat....


I hope you have had the happiest of Fridays, friends!





Sunday, August 25, 2013

Mama's Boy and the Breakfast Club

Hello, hello! How is everyone doing? This weekend was so relaxing and a breath of fresh air. I am SO excited that fall is upon us. The breezy fall winds are starting to bluster in. I can feel it. 


Friday started out with a trip to the Goodwill where my good friend Carly and I found some unusual goodies. I ended up making it out with a flower vase to display for Sunday morning's Breakfast Club breakfast before church. I really wanted the novelty dinosaur cups with pop-up dinosaurs, but decided to stick to my list and just grab the vase. And Carly made away with a mini pancake pan. How cute is it? So cute! 



We decided to take it easy Friday night and went to bed early because Saturday morning we had BIG plans. Mama's Boy is a famous breakfast/brunch/lunch restaurant in Athens. The atmosphere is small and quaint, but definitely home-y. The waiters are so friendly and drinks are served in Mason jars. And oh boy, oh boy! The food did not dissappoint. They have a variety of fluffy biscuit flavors, breakfast specials (um, hello Georgia peach french toast!!), coffee drinks, and...get this... chocolate cake for breakfast. Yes, you heard me correctly. For breakfast, you can order a beautiful slice of chocolate cake with a side of fresh fruit. Don't mind if I do. 

I ended up ordering the most delicious egg and cheese biscuit and smothered it with the delicious raspberry preserves that they had on the table.


Of course when walking out, you must grab a Mama's Boy sticker and a "thought of the day" from the baskets near the cash register. 

I can not wait back to head back to Mama's Boy to try everything on the menu.   


Sunday morning, we had our first Breakfast Club before church breakfast. I whipped up some delicious banana bread muffins using this recipe, homemade baked vanilla donuts using this recipe, and crockpot cheese and sausage casserole using this recipe. I prepped everything the night before so the meal came together speedy quick. And the crockpot casserole cooked over night. So easy! I also picked up some beautiful flowers at Trader Joe's because they make me oh so happy. 



This weekend was wonderful and I'm looking forward to the week ahead as it is time to kick start this semester.


Mama's Boy Restaurant on Urbanspoon


Friday, August 16, 2013

Friday Favorites and a Whirlwind of a week

Hello all, TGIF is about the only thing I can say right now. 

This week was a total whirlwind. It's finally time to relax. and finish up the rest of THESE brownies.

Today consisted of an early morning bus ride, an Italian lesson, a Political Science breakout session, some scoops of guacamole, a movie night viewing of Easy A, and now, an organization frenzy in my room. 



Now let's get to the Friday favorites, shall we?


Wanting to shove these in my mouth: DONUTS on DONUTS

Favorite Rise and Shine: So a berry walked into a bar...

I may need to sneak these into the movie theater: Easy, breezy, quick.

And the grilled sandwich award of the week goes to: THIS sandwich

Best healthy nosh: Smoothie time


Room cleaning time! How are you planning to spend this lovely weekend?


Thursday, August 15, 2013

the new daily grind

Whoah. Holy guac. 
These past few days have been absolutely wild and packed and busy. 
But I have loved every single minute of it. 



I moved into my first place, started school, started work, and I am trying to get back to the daily grind of college life.

I have been organizing my apartment, and trying to make it more home-y. It is in definite need of a "Welcome" mat and a lovely shade of paint right now. It came furnished, but needs some TLC and hugs. lots of hugs.


But it is a work in progress and it makes me smile everytime I walk through the door. 
The first few nights, I couldn't sleep because I was too excited about waking up in my own apartment.


I broke in the first weekend at the apartment by making some delicious cinnamon swirl coffee cake before church on Sunday for Carly and I. And then I may have made some brownies too. I used THIS recipe. And it is so amazing. Remind me never to make them again because I can. not. stop. eating. them. (currently running in the kitchen to grab another.)


Because I have been so busy, I have made sure to prepare smoothies every night for my morning breakfasts. It is so convenient to whirl up the blender when everything is already in place. 
At night, I will place yogurt/silken tofu + cocoa powder + spoonful peanutbutter + handful of spinach and soy/almond milk. Then in the morning, I will add a frozen banana and turn the blender on. I love being able to sip on my smoothie as I'm walking out the door. 

Another favorite combo of mine is tofu + frozen cherries and berries + banana + spinach + milk and a wee little squirt of honey. So good. 

After classes, I like to grab a quick snack before I begin studying. This week's snack of choice has been purple grapes thanks to Publix's good deals.


I feel so blessed for this new place and the wonderful friends I am able to see each and every day. I can not wait to see what this year has in store! 
Now it's time for a little quiet time and R&R before another big day tomorrow. 
Have a wonderful evening.


Friday, August 9, 2013

Friday Favorites

Woooweee has this been a fun week! I've been staying with my good friend Carly because I won't be able to move in to my apartment until tomorrow morning and I needed to run some errands around Athens before the big move-in day. I'm ecstatic about moving in and I can't wait to have a place to call my own. 

In the mean time, here are some of my Friday favorites! If you follow me on Instagram, (@HaleySouthey) you may have already seen a few of these already. 

1: King. Of. Pops. Need I say more? These delectable popsicles are so conveniently located in downtown Athens and are the perfect cool, summertime afternoon pick-me-up. I got the chocolate sea salt. do it. just do it. 


 2. Vaseline Spray and Go: I absolutely ADORE this lotion. In the past, I would totally skip the lotion because it made my hands greasy goo after applying. Not anymore! This spray goes right on. And it smells sweet as well. 


3. One Thousand Gifts: I have previously written about how much I have enjoyed this book, but it is absolutely wonderful. Seeing how God works in our life everyday is magnified by our gratitude. Gratitude brings us an abundance of joy and fulfillment. I love knowing that all things are good because even the rough and tough days make us stronger. I feel so optimistic about this next coming school year and I am so excited to see what God has in store. 


4. Captain Crunch Snack Mix: Yes, this stuff is addicting. I can and will eat a whole bag or two in one sitting. I have been loving snack mixes lately (Ummm, Chex Mix turtle anyone?) and this one is full of caramel crunch and sweet chocolate candy pieces. Can't stop. Won't stop. 


5. Phi Slam parties. Tonight, Carly and I are heading out for a Pig Pickin' barbecue hosted by Phi Slam, an "alternative environment to the college drinking scene" here in Athens. I'm so blessed to have a wonderful pressure-free atmosphere here at Georgia. 

Have a great start to your weekend! (: 


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Ike and Jane's

If the adorable typography doesn't draw you into Ike and Jane's in Athens, then their wide selection of donuts and pastries surely will. 



My good friend Carly and I discovered Ike and Jane's when we were looking for fun Athens coffee shops last year. Let me just tell you...Ike and Jane's is a winner. 


From blueberry date bars, to giant fudgy peanutbutter brownies, to a bacon-peanutbutter-banana elvis donut, you will not be disappointed with their breakfast selections. 


I went with a caramel glazed donut, and it was perfection! Fresh and sweet and the gooey caramel glaze...no words, no words.

They also have a selection of breakfast sandwiches that Carly and I discussed that we will be trying next time we visit Ike and Jane's. 

It's good to be back in Athens! 



Ike & Jane on Urbanspoon


Monday, August 5, 2013

Back to Athens

Well, it's that time of year again!
I'm headed back to Athens to start my sophomore year.
And I've been packing like a crazy person.

I have about ten projects going at one time as I pack. And I would like to say that is due to my mad multitasking skills instead of a lack of focus (; I have been having a fun time jamming out to music and figuring out how to fit everything in my car.

Last year at this time, I was a stressed maniac. But I have been reading a lot about stressing less and trusting God more. Stressing and worrying is a useless energy drain that gets you no where. I've been reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp and it has definitely changed my life! I am about halfway through it, but Ann's stories are very encouraging and real. She really focuses on worrying less. If you haven't picked up this book yet, it is a must read for sure!


I absolutely love back to school shopping and I am so ready for it this year! I remember getting so excited when I was in elementary school...picking out my crayon boxes... my notebooks.... those cute little pencil holders. Nothing much has changed and I still love back to school shopping just as much. I spent some time clipping coupons and organizing them in a binder this year. Bring it on back to school shopping!

And of course all this packing and coupon clipping called for lunch...
 

Today after car packing, Aunt Susu (her actual name is Susan) took me out for a last-day-at-home lunch to Converse Deli in Spartanburg. It is one of my favorite Spartanburg restaurants because they have a delicious variety of sandwiches and salads. Today, I ordered the Hawaiin sandwich with pineapple relish and ham and cheese and Aunt Susu ordered the Pilgrim with turkey and a delicious cranberry cream cheese spread. We switched our sandwich halves so we each got to try the others. Delicious! The sandwiches also came with your choice of salad (fruit, pasta, side salad) and chips and a pickle. It was a lovely lunch.

  
 
Packing the rest of the evening away and spending these last wonderful hours with family.

Have a wonderful, wonderful evening! (:




Saturday, August 3, 2013

White Water Rafting at Nantahala River


You know those days where you are having so much fun and you completely lose track of time? 
And you are so happy in the present moment and forget all worries, to-do's, and other distracting whatnots?

Today was one of those beautiful days. 


We woke up at the wee hour of 6AM, grabbed egg and cheese biscuits, and headed off to the Nantahala River in North Carolina. It was about a 2 hour drive for us, so my cousin Gracey and I spent our time curled up in blankets as we drove through the cold, foggy mountains with the top down.


As soon as we arrived, we signed our safety waivers and met our 10:30AM rafting group and guides. There were seven of us, so we chose to provide our own guide, (Uncle Will...aka Captain Will per his request) since there are a limited number of professional guides for each rafting group. We decided that this was a great decision because it not only made the trip more exciting, (aka Captain Will taking an accidental leap out the boat...oopsies) but we were able to coach ourselves by not being solely dependent on our guide. 


After we met with our group, we were instructed on how to sit and paddle, safety techniques, and proper wear of lifejackets. (aka "PFD's"...as the guides called them) We then were fitted for our jackets and watched a safety video detailing procedures if someone were to fall out of the boat. (And yes, these techniques were executed perfectly when Captain Will decided to test the waters)


Then we were off! We hopped onto the bus which drove us 8 miles to the top. This is where we heard some awesome cheesy raft guide jokes. (What's the difference between a raft guide and a pizza?...only one can feed a family. And: what is the quickest way to clear out a room of raft guides?...throw in a bar of soap.) Hahahaha. And then before we knew it, we were at the top and it was time for us to push our boats into the river. 



Cool fact: the part of the boat that you sit on during the trip is called the donut. As soon as I found this out, I just knew I was going to like this white water rafting trip.

We were on the water for about 2 hours paddling, rowing, and holding on for dear life.The rapids ranged from level 2 to level 3 which is pretty mild. If you are looking for a tougher course, there were level 3, 4, and 5 options. We decided to stick with the 2's and 3's because it was our first time. Next time, we may go for the big ones. 


After the trip, we were pretty famished and we picked up some barbecue sandwiches, ribs, mac and cheese, and cornbread at an eatery right outside of the Adventure Center. 
Overall, it was an excellent day spent with family. I am so thankful for these wonderful memories and timeless days I will remember forever. I am looking forward to our next trip that's for sure!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Mind Blown.


Hello, hi!

Is anyone else's mind blown that it is already August? I mean, this summer has just flown by! And I can not believe I will be back in Athens in five days... and that school will be starting back in eleven. I am so excited to get back into the Athen's lifestyle, beebop around Athens finest eateries, and start life in my first apartment.

Sanford Stadium Freshman Year

It is definitely going to be a big change from last year. Let's just say...dorm life wasn't really for me. I'm not typically a complainer, but 40 girls to one bathroom is just not my cup of tea.

But this year, I have my own room and my own bathroom. And it will be so lovely to call my apartment home. I can't wait to show you my apartment craft and decor ideas. And I have many frugal living tips coming your way! I am also looking forward to the fact that Trader Joe's will be within close proximity of my living quarters. This is a big, big deal. And I'm ecstatic about it.

Last year, we didn't have much of a chance to try different Athen's restaurants because the Freshman meal plan satisfied all of our eating needs. And we were too frugal to spend money out when the meal plan was already paid for. There are so many local restaurants in Athens and I can't wait to try them all! I am so excited to bake and cook in the next coming months, and to document all our delicious food tours on this little blog.

Milkshake Slurpin' last year at Clocked Diner in Athens

Today was a get-her-done kinda day. I woke up, had a leftover blueberry muffin dropped some books off at the library, headed to the post office, and then picked up a few things at Ingles. I also grabbed a bag of banana chips and apricots out of Ingle's bulk bins. They were the perfect afternoon pick-me-up. I have been on such a dried fruit kick lately. 



And then I may or may not have made a Target run. I have been obsessing over Rifle Paper Co.'s notebooks and journals and a little birdie told me that Target carries some of the line. I justified my spending with the fact that they are a school necessity. 


Are they not the cutest?! 


Lovely packaging, tied up in strings...these are a few of my favorite things....


And then I may or may not have made the most spectacular brownies in the world! I'm telling you the gooey, chocolaty delicious factor on these things is ridiculous. Don't worry, I will put the recipe on the blog very soon. They are the best I have ever had!

 
I have cousins, uncles, and grandparents coming to town this evening because we have a funfilled day of White Water Rafting tomorrow! I can not believe it. I am so nervous we may die excited I can barely stand it.

I'm off to have another brownie! Happy "ICANNOTBELIEVEITSAUGUST" (:

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