Tuesday, January 31, 2012

{Almost} Wordless Wednesday 2/1

Homemade pizza dough, pesto & marinara lead to these delicious creations: 

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Marriage from Scratch now has Twitter. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

DIY Candy Bar Valentines Card

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, I thought it would be fun to share something I made for Stephen for our first Valentine's Day. I had so much fun creating this, and it was such a hit! I left it in his bedroom, propped up on his bed, while he was at work. Then when he walked into his room later that night it was the first thing he saw! He loved it. 

Here's what it says (in case it is hard to read). The bolded words below are the candy bars I used:

Happy Valentine's Day Big Hunk. I just wanted to Take 5  minutes and tell you that you make me feel like 100 Grand. I sure Skor-ed with you! I have Mounds of fun being such Nerds with you! You are such a Sweet Heart {Tarts}. I couldn't find a better man if I searched the Milky Way. My heart leaps for {Almond} Joy when I see you. You are so Nutrageously sexy! I love you to {Reeses} Pieces and I want to kiss you Now & Later. Being with you is like Pay Day everyday! I hope this card makes you Snicker{s}.  I LOVE YOU Baby {Ruth}!

This is simple, adorable & reasonably inexpensive gift for your significant other. 

All you need to make this yourself is:

1. Large piece of poster board

2. Hot glue gun (super glue would work too)

3. Sharpie (or markers)

4. Candy bars that put exactly how you feel into words.....  in a cute way! I had to go to 3-4 stores around town to find all of the candy bars I was looking for, but it was totally worth it.

5. Embellishments (if you want). I just printed some hearts off of the computer.

6. Think of somewhere fun to place it for a sweet surprise! Some ideas? In your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife's car, somewhere in the house, at their work, or anywhere you could think of that would make their day!

Friday, January 27, 2012

5 Question Friday 1/27

Welcome to Marriage from Scratch! I am linking up with here once again for 5 Question Friday. You can head over to Mama M's blog to link up, too!

1. Do you swim in the winter?
Yes, if I am at an indoor pool or somewhere warm/tropical with an outdoor pool in the winter. 

2. Do you love or hate winter?
I have my days. Some days I love it, other days I curse winter for making me feeling so sleepy when it's gloomy out!

3. Do you put makeup/actual clothes on when you know you're going to be home all day with just family?
Depends. Most of the time: no. If we are going to the store or something on the weekend I usually will put a little makeup on but still wear sweats.

4. How old were you when you had your first alcoholic beverage?
I believe I was 18..

5. How many ill calls in a 12 month period do you think are acceptable?
Ugh, I try not to have any. I have been at my job for 10 months and haven't had to take a sick day *knock on wood* I like Mama M's idea of the number of days that you work in a pay period spread out over 12 months. But this idea would not fly for my job, so I have to stay healthy to take care of the little ones I nanny for.

Have a fantastic weekend!!

I Was Tagged!

Brandi from "Yee Wittle Things" tagged me in this super fun questionnaire.  Thanks for reading!

The Rules:

1. You must post the rules.
2. Post 12 fun facts about yourself in the blog post.
3. Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post and then create
 12 new questions for the people you tagged.
4. Tag 12 people and link them on your post.
5. Let them know you've tagged them.

12 Facts About Me:

1. I really dislike, and do not eat, seafood.

2.  My middle name is Noel which I love because I was born four days after Christmas.

3.  My husband was my best friend for almost a year before we dated. It was
 perfect because we were so close and shared everything before we even
 had any idea we would date.

4.  I was bit by a rattle snake (on my wrist) when I was six years old. 

5.  Family means the world to me. I am blessed to have three younger siblings
 whom I love very much. It is fun how it turned out: girl, boy, girl, boy.

6. My favorite tv shows are: Desperate Housewives (so sad it's ending),
 Friends, How I Met Your Mother, Friends, and (most recent) Storage Wars.

7.  I love, love, love Twilight. 

8. I enjoy going to bed early and waking up late. I function the best with over 
10 hours of sleep..:)

9.  I love candy- anything not chocolate. Sour Patch Kids, Hot Tamales
Red Hots, Starbursts, Fruit Mentos, Etc.

10.  I have an obsession with candles. I love lights off and just using candle light. 
Very relaxing!

11.  I love painting my nails but then get frustrated when I absentmindedly start picking at it (and consequently chip them) soon after! 

12.  I can't wait to travel the world and see it all.

Brandi's Questions for Me:

1. What's a goal you've accomplished in life that you're most proud of?
This would have to be graduating from college with a double major in 1) Education and 2) Early Child Development. There were rough times and hard classes, but I am so proud that I did it! Now to pay off the loans..

2.  What's a goal that you WISH to accomplish that you haven't yet?
My major goal is to become a teacher. I will accomplish that...and I am willing to move to wherever I need to in order to find a job in the future!

3.  What is your go-to comfort food when needed?
Something with cheese. Actually, I am not sure I have just one go-to food. I love Slurpees on a hot summer day or even if I just feel like something sweet
 anytime of the year.

4.  Do you sleep on the left side, right side or middle of the bed?
Right side.

5.  If you had $1 000 000 to donate to any charity, which would you
choose and why?
I would find a charity to donate the money to that funds research for cancer cures (especially for children).  

6.  What is your favourite room in your house and why?
It's a toss up between our bedroom and the living room. I would have to say our bedroom- it's relaxing & peaceful and where I get to start and end each day with my hubby.

7.  If you were stranded on an island, what ONE item would you wish to have with you?
Pretending that I would have a way to charge it, I'd bring my iPhone. I was going to say some type of food, but that would just be eaten up. My iPhone would allow me to stay connected with those I love and provide me with hours of entertainment ;)

8.  If a genie gave you 3 wishes, what would they be?
Longer life, money (so that it wouldn't be an concern, ever), and 3 more wishes!

9.  What's your favourite season of the year and why?
Summer! I love laying by the pool and the sunshine just puts me in a great mood!

10.  Are you a coffee or tea person?
Coffee, coffee, coffee. However, at night I do like to drink herbal tea.

11.  Are you a pet person?  If so, what's your favourite pet to have?  If not, why?
Yes and no. I like dogs, but we don't have any. I can't stand cats though...(sorry...). I had many pets growing up: fish, hamsters, gerbals, bunnies, lizards, etc. I think hubby and I will get a dog sometime in the next couple of years.

12.  What is your most cherished, sentimental item you own?
From my husband, my most cherished item is my wedding ring because it represents our love and the bond we made to each other. Another very sentimental thing to me though is my baby book that my mom put together throughout my life. It holds some special memories such as hair from my first haircut and stories about me as a baby.

My Tags:  

Kylee at Kylee Noelle
Bridget at Four & Friends
Courtney at Courtney Lane
Maranda at Cupcakes Dance Like Sugar Plums
Jamie at Making Mama Happy
Brielle from Him & Her
Elisabeth La Vita e Bella
Trisha at Mama T and Baby E
Ariel at A Dreamer's Daze
Heather at Notes from the Nelsons
Karajean at Not a Couple's Blog
Sara at The Hinton Hookup

My Questions for You:

1. What is the last movie you watched?
2. Where were you born?
3. What's your favorite thing to cook?
4. What is your most favorite trip you have taken?
5. What kind of music do you enjoy listening to?
6. How many kids do you have or want to have?
7. What are your hobbies?
8. What's something embarrassing/funny that has happened to you recently?
9. Do you prefer cats or dogs? why?
10. What's your favorite drink to order at Starbucks?
11. What kind of car do you drive?
12. What is one goal you have for your future?

Please leave your post link in a comment for me so I can come check out the answers to your questions! :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

It's OK Thursday 1/26

Its Ok Thursdays

It's Thursday again and I am, once again, linking up with Amber and Neely 

 It's OK....

...that I found this delicious Orange Creamsicle smoothie on Pinterest and convinced hubby to make it with me (minus the sugar....and it's delicious without). I wanted to post the picture but it's not letting me..

...that our lease is up very shortly and we have yet to find time to go in and re-sign our contract. Whoops. Looks like we need to get on that..

...that I love having Tuesdays off because when I go back to work on Wednesdays the week is already over halfway finished!

...that it took us calling Blockbuster every day for about three weeks to try to get our hands on a copy of What's Your Number. We finally watched it last night and it was pretty entertaining!

...that I am REALLY excited and already planning our trip to Disneyland  this spring/summer even though right now we really can't afford it. By then hopefully we can..:)

...that I love having this outlet to write and make new friends in my corner of the bloggy world. 

...that I was super excited to host my first linkup (Wordless Wednesday) AND have over 60 people linkup. Very fun!

...that I caught myself talking in my sleep to my hubby while we were at the beach last weekend. This is not the first time it's happened and woken me up, but it is always fun to laugh about it the next morning!

What's OK with you this week??

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, January 23, 2012

Liebster Blog Award

Thank you to Courtney of Courtney*Cakes for presenting me with this sweet award. Head on over to her blog and check it out! Thank you, Courtney for this award.

Liebster in German means dearest, beloved, or favorite, and it is for bloggers with under 200 followers.

The rules are: 

1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.
2. Link back to the blogger who awarded you.
3. Copy & paste the blog award on your blog.
4. Reveal your 5 blog picks.
5. Let them know you chose them by leaving a comment on their blog.

My choices for the Liebster Blog Award are....

Beach Trip

We had an enjoyable weekend. We relaxed Friday night and spent Saturday evening with friends at the Oregon Coast. 

When we arrived (after Stephen got off work) they were having dinner. We just hung out for awhile, had some drinks, and then headed off to the casino.

We played the penny slots at the casino. Once we headed home, we played my favorite game: Apples to Apples (if you haven't played, you're missing out!). We stayed up until almost 4am which is the latest I have stayed up in a long time. Actually, to tell you the truth, I can't remember the last time I was up that late. But it was fun!

In the morning, we woke up at about 11am and headed to breakfast at Pig N' Pancakes. Yum. I enjoyed a delicious strawberry waffle while Stephen had a clam burger (or something). 

This is the ocean as we were leaving the coast on Sunday. It's hard to tell from this picture, but the waves were gigantic! It was incredibly windy (some at 110 mph even) , rainy, and stormy earlier in the week and the waves still hadn't calmed down.

We are now recovering from the fun we had. I thought it would be harder to wake up at 5:45 this morning. I mean, I wanted to continue sleeping, but I got right up when my alarm went off. I'm looking forward to having tomorrow off though.

Happy Monday everyone!


Where I am linking up today...


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Recipe of the Week: Miso Soup

*Ingredients in this soup can be found at an Asian specialty market and grocery stores with a large Asian section.*

Here is a scrumptious soup to warm you up on a cold day:

What You Will Need:

1 quart of dashi (recipe to follow)
1/2 cup of miso- add more if desired
1/4 cup dried shiitaki mushrooms, sliced
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1/2 pound tofu, cubed


1. Place shiitaki mushrooms  in a pot of water (just enough water to cover mushrooms) and bring to a simmer; heat until tender.

2. In a separate pot, bring dashi to a simmer and add shiitaki mushrooms and  its broth (the water it was cooked in).

3. Add miso paste, stir with whisk (do not boil).

4. Add all remaining ingredients and serve. 

Dashi Recipe

What You Will Need:

2 quarts cold water
2 pieces konbu, 3x3 inch each
2-3 cups bonito flakes


1. In a large sauce pot, place konbu in cold water and bring to a simmer for 15 minutes.

2. Add bonito flakes and simmer for an additional 7-8 minutes. Strain before use.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Choosing the Perfect Venue

We had a pretty easy time choosing our wedding location. I knew that I wanted an outside, summer ceremony and we knew the general location (about halfway between the cities we both grew up in) that we wanted to have our wedding. One of the things we love to do is wine taste because we love wine. So when we began our search for a venue we started by looking at wineries and vineyards in the area.

Even with a ten month engagement, we knew from the beginning of our venue search that many summer dates would already be reserved. This is the reason we started our venue search the weekend Stephen proposed. 

The first place we checked out was Eola Hills Winery. We instantly fell in love with the beautiful outdoor garden (ceremony) and the rustic look inside from the wine barrels inside (which would be perfect for the reception). We were planning to continue checking out other wineries for possible venues, but we loved this venue and asked them what summer dates they still had available. They had three dates left for Saturday weddings in 2011. There was one date in June , July 30, and August 27. I had already decided months before (I'm a planner..) that I wanted my wedding to be either July 30 or August 6. I loved those dates, and July 30 also happened to be my grandmother's birthday.  So we paid our deposit (knowing that if we did decide on another location we would only lose $150) and looked at a couple other venues. 

We looked at other wineries that required you to spend an outrageous amount on food (by their caterer) and had a (very high) alcohol minimum. The venue was beautiful, but there was know way that these requirements fit our budget. In the end, we were more than happy with our decision to have our wedding at Eola Hills. Here are the reasons we chose this venue and what made our decision so simple:

1. We were able to bring in an outside caterer  and were not required to use their in-house catering.

2. They were MORE than helpful. I cannot explain how many "extra" things they did not charge us for and how beyond willing to help they were.

3. We saved money by having the ceremony and reception at the same place.

4. They did not have a required alcohol purchase minimum (which many places do).

5. The venue had space for the number of guests we were expecting (about 200).

These are some of the things I recommend checking on when choosing a wedding venue. If you already have a caterer in mind, or know someone who wants to do your wedding food, then be sure to find a venue that is flexible and allows you the option to use a caterer other than their own. Also, be sure to reserve a venue as soon as possible after getting engaged because dates fill up fast!

This post is part of a series on the experience I had planning our wedding. You can read the other posts I have written so far here.

Friday, January 20, 2012

5 Question Friday

I'm participating in Five Question Friday again this week. Join in with me by answering these questions and linking up here to join in the fun.

1Where do you hide the reeeally good snacks?
Well, since we don't have kids yet, I don't really have a need to "hide" the treats. However, at Halloween time my husband and I each picked out a bag of fun sized candy bars since we couldn't agree on just one type of candy. He finished his bag pretty quickly...and mine? I still have a few pieces left sitting in their bag on the left inside the t.v. hutch in our room. Random place, I know. But that's where they ended up.

2. Do u keep your vehicle clean or am I the only one who has things falling out of their van?
When I bought my new-to-me car two years ago (this is my second car since I turned 16) I wouldn't even leave a sweatshirt in it because I wanted it to stay clean and perfect. But now, there is quite a bit of crap in it. Okay it is not terrible but does include: a few jackets, rain boots for the pumpkin patch trip in October, and some garbage. It really could use a good cleaning, inside and out.

3. Have you ever been to Vegas?
Yessssss! Hubby and I went to Vegas twice when we were dating (2009 and again in 2010). Vegas was our first trip together so it holds a special place in my heart! 

Our first time there we stayed at New York New York and the second at The Flamingo. But times had during both trips!

4. Warm room light blankets or cold room warm snuggly blanket?
Warm room and warm blankets. I get cold! Actually we have figured out the best situation now. Our room is at 60 degrees during the night (heat is expensive...) and we use two quilts. Keeps us both cozy!

5. What is the worst airplane/flying experience you've ever had?
During my 8th grade year, I was blessed to be able to go to Washington D.C. with my class. I did a whole lot of babysitting and paid for the trip (practically) by myself.  It was such a great experience, but now that I am older I wish I could go again. I feel like I would appreciate things more. Also, the year we went was spring of 2002. So D.C. was still quite shaken up from 9-11 at the time and security was horrible to get through.

But the worst airplane experience happened on this flight. We had some parent chaperones come with us on the trip, and on our flight home one of the dads started feeling really sick. And he started puking. All over the inside of the plane and the wall to the left of him. I thought I was going to puke myself. (I guess now is a good time to mention I have an irrational fear of vomiting. It's true). The entire plane smelled like vomit, and I was so weak and nauseous the rest of the flight. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

It's OK Thursday

Its Ok Thursdays

It's OK...

...to makes plans with the hubby to just pick up Subway for dinner tonight since neither of us feel like cooking.

...to send an annoyed email to our local newspaper since I have had to call 4 times (on hold 15 minutes each time...) without getting through to anyone. GRRR

...to have had a blast participating in Wordless Wednesday & finding some pretty great blogs yesterday!

...that I went for the Gingerbread Latte instead of just a Caffe Misto today...

...that I want the rain to stop because of all the floods happening and warnings we are receiving. I know I'm from Oregon and I love the rain, but I don't want our apartment to flood (we are on the bottom floor).

...that I love Thursdays because that means Friday is just around the corner!

...that I continued to lay in bed ten minutes after my alarm went off this morning and then had to rush to get ready. Oops.

...that I can't think of much else to say today!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

{Almost} Wordless Wednesday

{I made dinner last night for my husband for a change. My first time making pesto. Yum!}




Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Recipe: Peach Chutney

My husband makes a delicious sweet & spicy Peach Chutney. It's great on chicken, roast beef, and sausage. I thought I would share it with you so that you can enjoy it, also!

What You Will Need:

1 quart of peaches, diced (fresh or frozen; not canned)
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 red onion, diced
1/2 white onion, diced
1/4 candied ginger
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup dark rum
1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
1/2 tsp allspice, ground
1/8 tsp mace
2-4 Thai chili (depending on preferred heat level)


1. Throw in large sauce pot and cook on medium-low for 1.5 hours.

2. Once cooked down, place in food processor and process to desired consistency.

3. Enjoy!

Today's linkup parties I'm participating in....


Monday, January 16, 2012

Featured Guest: Dena from Dena's Deals

Today we have someone special guest posting about living life the frugal way. Please welcome Dena! 

Dena is an IRL (in real life) friend of mine that I have actually known for 20 years. She writes the blog "Dena's Deals" which is a great resource for weekly coupon match ups at stores like Albertsons, Fred Meyers, Target, Rite Aid, Walgreens, and more. Another great feature of her blog is her weekly savings posts where she adds up what she spent versus what she saved from coupons and sales each week. Check out her blog, you won't be sorry!

She is with us today to share a post on doing date nights the frugal way. 


Hey husbands, listen up!

Your wife loves it when you spoil her. But if you're a newlywed or have a limited date night budget, you dont spoil that often. So I put together a list of things that you can do for her that will help you stay within your budget (whatever that may be). And ladies, don't be afraid to surprise your man with one of these either. 

    • Pack a picnic and go for a hike
    • Visit the Zoo on the second tuesday of the month
    • Get a movie from Redbox ( try promo code dvdonme for a free DVD) and single bag of popcorn (usually around $.19-.30) from Walgreens
    • Check Groupon Now for quick dinner deals usually about 50% off
    • Raid the dollar store for poker game items you don't already have. Use Peanuts or some other inexpensive marker and let the games begin.
    • Attend a poetry or book reading together. Most of these events are free and you'll learn something new to discuss over Starbucks later. (with that gift card you got from swagbucks of course!
    • Volunteer! Fill your cup while you fill someone else's.
    • Turn off the TV, your phones and anything else that might be a distraction, light some candles (40% off coupon in this sunday's paper) and serve this for dinner. Ah, sweet romance.

Having a slightly larger budget? Try these:

Any other ideas for an inexpensive date night? Leave them in the comments!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Recipe of the Week: Hummus

 We love homemade hummus! Here is a healthy alternative to game day snacks. My husband created this recipe and I just love it!

Pin It

What You Will Need:

1 cup canned garbanzo beans
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon Tahini (sesame seed paste)
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Place drained garbanzo beans with all other ingredients in food processor. Process until smooth. 

*We like to add flavors such as roasted garlic or roasted red pepper.

For Roasted Garlic Hummus:

1. Roast 4-5 cloves of garlic in the oven at 350 degrees until golden brown. 

2. Add into food processor with other ingredients.

For Roasted Red Pepper Hummus:

1. Roast red pepper over a direct flame (gas stove or grill).

2. Once the outside is black, place in closed container for a few minutes and let rest (I use a Tupperwear container). This allows the skin to blister so it can be easily removed.

3.  Cut and remove seeds from bell pepper. Place flat on cutting board.

4. Use the spine of the knife (back) to scrape black char/skin off bell pepper. 

5. Chop and place with other ingredients in food processor.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Our Wedding Video

I thought I'd share our wedding video with all of you out in the bloggy world. We just received this edited version about a month ago. We are in love with it. It is less then 12 minutes but goes through the best day of our lives (with great music, too!).

We woke up to NO running water this morning. Apparently a there was a major leak in one of the pipes and it's taken ALL DAY to work on it. Hopefully we get water back soon! Happy weekend.

Friday, January 13, 2012

5 Question Friday

1. What's the the last thing you bought for yourself?
The last thing I bought myself was headlights for my car (if I remember right). Coincidentally, both my car and hubbies car needed new headlights at the same time. So we had a cute little date at the auto part store. Those stinkers are expensive...

2. What is your favorite meal on a cold winter day? 
My crockpot chili or grilled cheese and tomato soup.  Yum!

3. Have you started looking at swimsuits for this year, and do you buy a new one every year?
This is the weird thing, I have probably 20+ swimsuits. I love swimsuits. I can't ever get enough. But I always feel self conscious in them! Anyways, I haven't started looking yet this year (its January...) but I am sure I will add a new one to my collection at some point in 2012. 

4. If you could be any candy what would you be and why?
This is a toughy for me. I love non-chocolate candy. Although I am developing a strong love for Butterfingers. I would probably be a Starburst because they are fruity and delicious. And because I can't think of anything more creative right now.

5. What are you most passionate about?
Spending time with those I love. I soak up time with family and friends because you never know when it will be your last chance. Also, I am passionate about the education of young children and cannot wait to (hopefully soon!) have my own classroom where I can have an impact on the lives of young children.

Oh and for the record, I beat Stephen in an intense game of Phase 10 last night.

Have a great weekend! Be sure to leave a comment or become a follower so I can check out your blog! Also, leave me the link to your 5 Question Friday post so I can see your answers, too!