Monday, February 27, 2012

The Hunger Games

I am sure many of you have already read The Hunger Games, but I am just starting it and am obsessed! I love it, I will dream about it at night, and I can't wait to finish the first book to get to the next two. I was debating over a couple books to read once I finished the great Lucia, Lucia and I really think that I made the right choice! 
In a small recap, read Lucia, Lucia! and Get started on The Hunger Games! I am addicted!

I am glad that I am not the only one wrapped up in this book!

Saturday, February 25, 2012


I just wanted to say hello, I have been so busy this week and can't wait til a much more relaxing week next week! My Uncle made me a bench for christmas from some wood that he and my grandpa found. It has been sitting between the kitchen and living room as a landing spot for my books and purse, and Carlos has been lining up his shoes under neath. We made a trip to a fabric store this week, where we bought some great bright yellow and white chevron fabric which we are going to add to the top with a cushion, and paint it a charcoal gray. I don't know when we are going to do this little DIY but, I can't wait. I bought extra fabric, to make a couple pillows and I am very excited to see what other inspirations arise while doing these small projects! Have a wonderful weekend!!
My new favorite pattern... I would love it all over house!! 
These cases are from Etsy.. and I can't wait to buy one!! 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ash Wednesday

Did you celebrate Mardi Gras/ Fat Tuesday yesterday before fasting during the lent season? Carlos and I did not, I made pasta with Alfredo sauce and added veggies to mine... we had no meat, which is almost a sin in itself according to Carlos. But today being Ash Wednesday we will not be eating meat again today, then one more time on Friday... I don't know how Carlos is going to get through lent since he is practically a carnivore. After church this morning we used a couple gift cards my brother gave us to eat breakfast at The Grove Cafe. It was adorable inside, with fresh flowers, cookbooks, and lovely kitchen accessories. I had oatmeal and Mr. Ortega had their pancakes that were topped with grapes and strawberries. We had a wonderful morning, and now he is off to bed and I am getting ready to go to class, and possibly meet a friend for lunch. Have a great day guys!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Date Night

My top is from Forever 21, shorts from Express, and my tights are from Target.

Tonight Carlos and I went out to eat at a little french restaurant near campus, about a month ago I bought a Groupon for La Provence and couldn't wait to try it! Everything was absolutely delicious, and it was great having a date night just the two of us. 
I almost forgot, I got my hair blown out this morning at Inspire Salon by the best Lauren Thompson, she is by far amazing!!   

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Girl Scout Cookies

Since I was a girl scout myself I loved their cookies! I don't know if there is anything better than that time of year when I see girl scouts selling their famous cookies! I absolutely love Samoas, and since I still have not recieved my cookie order, I am craving some very bad!!! But as I was taking a break from studying checking out my Pinterest I came across a recipe to make my beloved Samoas... I can't wait to try it! Check it out!!!! 

(I found them on this blog) 

Cookies ~ Homemade Samoas

(also known as Caramel de-Lites)
Makes about 3 1/2 to 4 dozen

The cookies involve four steps: 
1. Make the cookie Base
2. Top with Caramel-Coconut mixture
3. Dip bottom of cookies in melted chocolate
4. Drizzle tops with melted chocolate

The Cookie (base):
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
up to 2 tablespoons milk

Preheat oven to 350F.

Cream together butter and sugar in a large bowl. Mix in flour, baking powder and salt at a low speed, next, the vanilla and milk, adding in the milk only as needed to make the dough come together without being sticky (you may not need any at all). The dough should come together into a soft, pliable ball. Add in a bit of extra flour if your dough seems sticky.

It's easiest to roll the dough out in 2 or 3 batches (between pieces of wax (or parchment) paper to about 1/4-inch thickness (or a little thinner) using a 1 1/2-inch cookie cutter to make rounds. Place on a parchment lined (or on silicone mat) baking sheet and make a hole in the center. I used the small end of a large round piping tip. Nicole comments that you can use a knife, or the end of a wide straw, to cut a smaller center hole. Repeat until the dough is used up (it's okay to re-roll, this dough is shortbread-like and very forgiving.)

Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, until bottoms are very lightly golden brown around the edges.

Cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet, to allow them to firm up slightly, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.


3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12-ounces good-quality chewy caramels
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons milk
8 ounces dark or semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips will do)
(If you prefer milk chocolate, by all means use that.)

My notes: The caramel-coconut mixture is quite sweet, so I used Bittersweet chocolate to balance the sweetness bit.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees (F)

Spread coconut evenly on a rimmed baking sheet and toast 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until coconut is golden. Watch carefully, especially near the end of toasting time; the coconut toasts very quickly once it begins to become golden.

Cool on baking sheet, stirring occasionally. Set aside.

Unwrap the caramels and place in a large microwave-safe bowl with milk and salt. Cook on high for 3-4 minutes, stopping to stir a few times to help the caramel melt. When smooth, fold in toasted coconut with a spatula.

Using the spatula or a small offset spatula, spread topping on cooled cookies, using about 2-3 teaspoons per cookie. Reheat caramel for a few seconds in the microwave if it begins to firm up, to make it soft and spreadable once again.

While topping sets up, melt chocolate in a small bowl. Heat on high in the microwave in 45 second intervals, stirring thoroughly to prevent scorching. (I melted mine stovetop using double boiler method.) Dip the base of each cookie into the chocolate and place on a clean piece of parchment paper (I used silicone baking mats instead). Transfer all remaining chocolate into a piping bag or a ziplock bag with the corner snipped off and drizzle finished cookies with chocolate. (Melt a bit of additional chocolate, if there is not quite enough for each cookie.)

Let chocolate set completely before storing in an airtight container.

Recipe credit: Nicole @ Baking 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day

I have the BEST valentine all year long!

You know you had a good Valentines Day when you get to eat chocolate kisses for breakfast! Valentines Day is far from one of my favorite holidays, but at the end of the day I do love receiving cards from those I love! There is one thing that I look forward to every Valentines day, and that is the roses that my dad has gotten me every year! I was worried that he wouldn't get me any this year since it is the first Valentines day I have not lived at home, but he still did, thanks Dad (and Mom)! Mr. Ortega gave me the funniest card and a box of my favorite chocolates (kisses) this morning when I woke up.... School was long today, and it was nice to finish Lucia, Lucia tonight! Now that Carlos is at work it is time to finish some much needed studying for school, and hopefully get to bed early. 

I hope for many more valentines days together Mr. Ortega!

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Wash Tub

Hello, I hope everyone has had a great week. I am currently doing laundry at the the laundromat and forgot my nook, so I have been catching up on reading a couple of my favorite blogs (Gal Meets Glam & A Beautiful Mess) and I am glad to hear that I am not the only girl who is extremely picky about her hair color (read Julie's hair problems on Gal Meets Glam).. But other than that I have been on my pinterest nonstop since I've been ere and thought I would share a couple nail ideas that I want to try ASAP. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Class Cancelled

That's right, my first class was cancelled today. While I really wanted to sit on the couch, drink coffee, and watch TV until 2pm... I went to work to get some stuff done. After that I stopped by Forever 21 (where I found nothing and just bought my cousins some gift cards), then went to lunch with my brother. I really didn't want to go to my last class, but since it's only once a week... I went. Tonight, I did my nails and am dreaming of Valentines Day...
Carlos and I are not doing anything on February 14th, but I can't help but think about decorating the kitchen where we will either eat pizza or something else quick with our busy schedules, that night... In a week or two we are going to try a french restaurant that I bought a Groupon for, and can't wait!!! After reading Julie and Julia I have a small obsession with french food... I have not attempted to cook any form of french food, but I lust after the thought of it!! 
Do you have any plans with the ones you love in the next week or so?? If so, what it it? I'd love to hear about it.

Carlos would love these!!

I love the use of the M&Ms.

Down right adorable!

Friday, February 3, 2012

A Lovely Afternoon

Hello all! I am glad that it is Friday! I don't mind that I have to work all weekend, because this week has been crazy busy, from homework, watching Carlos's niece and well, just the over all feeling of being behind. I only have one class on Fridays... So today I decided to come to a local coffee shop just around the corner from my house and work on some readings and have some lunch (tuna melt & French onion soup). Have a beautiful weekend!

P.S. I almost forgot to mention that there is a great duet playing some great music :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Buenos Dias

Today is a beautiful day, while it is still a bit chilly outside, it's sunny and the birds are chirping. I was very sleepy yesterday morning, so I went to bed early last night and feel great this morning! There are two things I usually do while drinking my coffee in the morning, either watching my favorite line up TV which can last until 1pm.. or reading. I am in love with Lucia, Lucia if you have not yet picked up your copy do so as soon as possible! In addition to Lucia, Lucia I am in love with Design Sponge at Home; which is beyond inspiring. Everything from the apartments in New York to the DIY basics makes for the perfect design book for anyone! Here's their website.