Saturday, September 29, 2012

Spending Fast - 9 months down!

Well this month has been full of changes, but my Spending Fast is still going well!  

My debt has been going down a little more (slowly but surely), but I did realize an area that I've been slacking on - and that's the booze. 

Not that I'm a big boozer or anything, but a bottle of wine here, a pint of beer there - it really adds up!  I've been allowing myself the occasional treat, but it seems that "occasional" has begun to mean "whenever I want it".  Yikes. 

So that's something I need to work on.  Especially with a much smaller paycheck coming in, I will need to be very careful so that I can still get my debt down!  

I don't have a "money not spent" sheet to show you today (I haven't been using it lately since I haven't been on my computer as much lately), but I do have an update on my amounts! :) 

I started out with $13,168.04 of debt at the beginning of this year. 
I'm now left with $7,256.38 as of the end of this month. 

So it's not a huge jump from last month, but it's still dropped!  That's great!  
Therefore, I've paid off $5,911.56 of my debt in the past 9 months.  

The best part is I'm in the $500 range for paying off my largest / highest interest bill - the one that was over $4k when I started this whole thing!  I feel pretty darn happy about that. 

I'll keep plugging away!  I'm glad that when tax season comes I should have a decent amount coming back to me that I can put towards it as well.  Hopefully by the end of next year I'll be 100% debt free - with money in savings too!!  YEAH!  

Friday, September 28, 2012


Sorry I haven't been around lately!  This new bakery job keeps me away from my computer a lot, but I kinda like it that way. :)

But AUTUMN has finally arrived!!  I LOVE IT!  It has been rainy rainy rainy in Denver the last few days and I've been totally in love with the change in weather.  My red rain boots have been very happy to get some puddle-sloshing in as well (see pic).

I'm so excited for the changing of the seasons.  The leaves are changing colors, and mornings are brisk and chilly.  We even closed our windows last night and it was still 68 degrees in the house when we woke up!  I just love it.

Halloween is coming up, and I have a pretty hilarious costume planned.  I'm not going to give anything away here just yet though...

As far as the new job goes, I'm just loving it.  I feel like working at a bakery is what I was meant to do.  I love chit-chatting with the customers, decorating cupcakes, and joking around with my new co-workers.  It's a wonderful group of people, and I'm loving every minute of it!

Just for fun, here are some new "fall photos" that I've been tagging on Pinterest lately (when I have time that is).  Haha!

I don't know if this photo was taken in New York, but I like to think it was.  I can't WAIT to see New York in October - I haven't seen the city in the fall yet.  I have a feeling it's going to be awesome!

Oh my, how I LOVE apple season!  I hope the Farmer's Market has apple cider this weekend when I go (fingers crossed)... I love this time of year...

Fall is such a beautiful time to be living in Colorado - especially when the Aspens start changing colors... they are such magnificent trees!

I'm kind of in love with this photo.  Rollerskates AND fall??  YEAH!

Cinnamon & candied apples... yum yum!
I created a new drink at work recently too - caramel apple latte.  I'm sure it's been done before, but I just use the caramel flavoring and the apple flavoring in a regular latte.  I gotta say, it might be even better than a pumpkin spice latte. :)

Knitted gloves & hot apple cider.  Two of my favorite things!
HAPPY AUTUMN, EVERYONE!!  Hope you're enjoying this beautiful time of year!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

St. Baldrick's Event - We shaved our heads!

Well, this weekend we did it!! 

Just a reminder - here is what we drove to Durango for, and why. :)

Taryn and I packed up some things (along with John), got up at the butt crack of dawn on Saturday (her birthday), and drove about 7 hours down to Durango.  It was a beautiful drive - the Aspens have started changing and they were all beautiful yellows & oranges scattered through the evergreens.  It was gorgeous!

We stopped at a tiny diner along the way (I think it was called Rooster's Crow or something), and got some coffee and breakfast, and a cinnamon roll the size of my head.

After breakfast we were back on the road again!

A nice "we still have hair" shot, with our big huge coffee mugs.  It was a bit chilly that morning!

John, contemplating breakfast with a beard scratch.

When we arrived in Durango, we decided to stop for a quick beer and some snacks.  We went to Steamworks, which had some pretty amazing beer!  Taryn even got a free drink because it was her birthday.  Win!  I had their Oktoberfest beer - it was absolutely fantastic.

Then we headed down to the center of town (it was such a beautiful & super cute area - I am now a fan of Durango for sure!), and we found out that it was Oktoberfest that day!  How fun!

John and Taryn - striking a pose at Oktoberfest!

Sisters & sunglasses!

We realized we were pretty pooped, so we got checked into our hotel and took naps.  My dad arrived shortly after (he rode his motorcycle down to spend the weekend with us), and after we all got cleaned up we headed to the Irish Embassy where the big event was going down!  We had to have some dinner first - I got their fish & chips (probably the best fish & chips I've ever had), and we all enjoyed some drinks.

They had an amazing Irish band there that struck up in song towards the end of our dinner.  They were awesome!  They had violinists, a guitar player, a flute player, a woman on the keyboard - and even an accordion!  They were so much fun!

Shortly after that - the head-shaving began!!

Taryn went before me...

John thought she looked like Tank Girl in this shot - haha!  Look at that smile! :)

Just about done! 

My turn!  I was a little freaked out at first - had some butterflies in my tummy, and a moment of "what the hell am I doing!?"  But it was awesome.  And the band played a little jig in the background while each of us were shaved.

Off it comes!

Taking off the last few bits!

Oh my gosh - it's all gone!  Ha!

It was so sweet because he gave us a special little shout out and had us tell our story.  They were thrilled about how much money our team had raised - over $3,600!  They even gave a shout out to our team member that couldn't be there (Megan) - Taryn told the guy that she was our "friend in Derby", and he thought she said "friend in Germany" - so that was pretty hilarious.

Here is Megan's lovely finished product!  She rocks it!

And here are the "after" pictures for Taryn & I!

John's hairier than I am now!  Haha!
He was so supportive of this whole thing - it only made me love him more.  Such a great guy. :)

Taryn got a free car-bomb for her birthday.  It was her first!  And after the hangover, probably her last... ha!

Such a happy girl!

Us with some of the other ladies that got their heads shaved that night - such amazing women!  They were fantastic!

Our new Scottish / Irish / English friend Richard - he told us jokes & stories, and his friend Roy was awesome too.  We had a really wonderful night!

This is one of my favorite pictures of the evening too - before & after!  Ha!

The next day we had some breakfast at the hotel, and made the long drive back to Denver (rubbing our heads in amazement).

All-in all it was a wonderful experience.  I'm so glad I did it, and that we could help such a great cause.  THANK YOU to everyone who made our team so successful, and who supported us in this endeavor!  You are all SO amazing, and my heart was so happy with love that I thought it would burst.

And by the way, showers are an absolute breeze.  :)

Monday, September 10, 2012

Moments to myself

Lately I've been in a lazy / solitary kind of mood - and enjoying every peaceful moment of it.  I've been spending time with friends more one-on-one (rather than in large gatherings), and enjoying some quiet time to myself in between.... 

Here are some images I've been pinning lately that kind of express the mood I've been in!  :) 

I'm looking forward to the cooler weather so that I can walk through some leaves, and enjoy the crisp morning air!  I just love this time of year... 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Thanksgiving Recipe Ideas (yes, already!!)

I'm feeling much better today about the new-job stuff, especially with some reassuring words from friends (you know who you are)! :)  

As you probably know, I LOVE Fall, and Thanksgiving is pretty much my most favoritest holiday ever.  And since it's September 7th, and Thanksgiving is only about 2 1/2 months away, I HAD to get started with my menu ideas!  

Yeah, I'm a little kooky.  

But today it's only supposed to get up to the mid-70's here in Denver, and that fall feeling is in the air.   And I'm absolutely adoring it!

So without further ado, here is the menu I've been working on over the past week or so... 


Egg casserole (make the night before!)
Scones!  (sticky fingers mix? I'm gonna keep this simple so that I don't go too crazy)

Homemade Pimento cheese dip (with rice crackers)
Roasted nuts

Roasted Beet Salad with pears & almonds

Side Dishes
Mushroom Wellington cups
Mashed potatoes (vegan)
Brussels sprouts with white beans & pecorino (on the side for Taryn)
Gravy (vegan)

Turkey (Dad / John will have to make it!)
Maple Glazed Tofurkey 

AND Currant Maple Citrus Loaf 

(you can find these through my Pinterest page "Yummy Recipes!"

Apple Cream Pie
Chocolate Pecan Pie
OR Butterscotch Pie
(2 out of the 3!) - all of them from the "Southern Pies" cookbook

Whaddaya think!?  :) 
I'm so excited to try out some new recipes this year - I think the mushroom wellington cups are going to be absolutely amazing, and I'm actually excited to try the currant maple citrus loaf for a change (instead of just making 2 tofurkeys)!  

Hmmm....maybe I'll try out a few of these recipes ahead of time.  Just for the hell of it!  Yum yum!!