rosemary beach

Rosemary Beach might be the most magical place on earth. We visited a few weeks ago on the back end of a work trip and just fell in love with the beautiful architecture, peaceful beaches and designful way of life. It also happened to be winter, so we had the place to ourselves. We rented a few bikes, explored the town, and enjoyed a little bit of rest for a few days. Rosemary Beach is now our retirement dream. It's good to have long term goals, right? Thank you, city planners of Rosemary, for creating such an aesthetically pleasing little city for folks to enjoy. We certainly did. Until next time, perfect little beach town, we'll be dreaming of you.

snow, glorious snow!

We had the most magical week last week when snow hit Atlanta by storm (quite literally). We were some of the very fortunate few who hadn't any trouble getting home and out of the icy weather, and for that, we were very thankful. We got to spend three days at home, hanging out, watching movies, and being with our neighbor friends (from whom I borrow these images, of course!) It was such an unexpected treat. Thank you, Atlanta, for having some of the craziest weather and letting us experience a real winter.

my favorite christmas gift

The other month, I was telling Kathryn how I didn't have any printed photos of my baby pup. So that little sneaky, thoughtful girl snuck into our house when we were at work and gave Gussy his very own glamor shots session, free of charge! (I mean, that middle one kills me). Then she gave them to me for Christmas. It was the sweet thing ever. Al and I got some really wonderful Christmas gifts this year, but I just had to take a minute to share my favorite.

spicy black bean soup

2014, holidays are over, back to the grind. So we thought it appropriate to toast with black bean soup. This recipe represents most of what I want in the New Year: a year filled with fullness, health, and ease. I want to do things quicker without lacking substance. I want to make the most of the time and resources I have been given, while still keeping the quality high, and not compromising values. Is that too deep for soup? Maybe. But aren't we all suppose to be overly analytical at the start of each new year? Anyways, for a soup that mostly consists of black beans and broth, this baby was amazing. Definitely a new staple for the cold, bitter winter months. Happy New Year!

advent

Christmas is upon us which means we are entering into a season of watching and waiting and preparing for the birth of Christ. What a beautiful thing we get to do. We don't want to miss it this year, with the hustle and bustle, we want our hearts to truly be ready for Christmas to come. So we began to decorate our home this weekend and it just feels cozier and happier and full of a bit more peace. Happy advent everyone!

it's getting so very cold !!!

So soup it is, for supper.

Smokey and spicy yet tangy and fresh; just too many flavors to choose from! A few notes: this recipe did not make a plethora of meal, like most soups make-- 3-4 servings at most. We skipped the hominy because we couldn't find it at Whole Foods (and if Whole Foods doesn't have it, ain't nobody gone' have it). And one last note: do not leave olive oil soaked tortilla strips broiling in a hot oven, unattended, any longer than necessary. Your oven will catch on fire, your smoke alarm will go off, and your dog will be terrified. Maybe that happened tonight. Maybe we threw baking soda all over the kitchen to get out the flames. And maybe we went to Chick-fil-A instead of eating these lovely leftovers.

Hello Monday, you have had your way with us.

fall at the lake

This weekend we snuck away from the city to enjoy the changing seasons at the lake. The seasons seem to be having a bit of an identity crisis however, because the leaves have yet to change their golden yellow and vibrant red. Maybe I am just missing it somehow, because all I seem to see is green. But I digress. And not that it totally matters anyways, because we still enjoyed our fall at the lake. The air was crisp and cool, we lit a fire, and breathed deep the fresh mountain air. We went wine tasting in the North Georgia vineyards, braved the outlets for home gear, cooked delicious food, slept in much later the usual, and enjoyed each other's company. What a treat!

puttin' on the ritz

On Monday and Tuesday of this week we cashed in a few vacation days and headed down to the Ritz at Reynolds Plantation to celebrate our second anniversary. Before we left the city, we indulged in breakfast at Empire State South and then meandered to the lake. We spent two days catching up on rest and relaxation and thanking the Lord for this marriage. We learned that we always want to celebrate our anniversary during the weekday because it just feels different and special; like we meant to be celebrating. We were blessed by our time away. Two years down, many many many more to come.

mushroom burgers with asian slaw

We are loving this whisper into fall where the air is perfect, the sky looks like heaven, and spending as much time outdoors as humanly possible is the ultimate goal. We made these portobello mushroom burgers one night after work this week and while it was certainly a good amount of work, they were so.very.good! We did not home-make the sweet potato fries because ya gotta choose your battles sometimes, ya know? Good things take time, but for mediocre things, take the short cut.

chopped kale salad with edamame, carrot and avocado

Oh, kale! What a love/hate relationship I have with you! I'm going to go out on a whim here and say that most people probably feel the same way. You love the nutrients, hate just about everything else. Heck, I only learned about kale two years ago because it got trendy all of a sudden. But alas, now I make kale often and just try to hide the bitterness with a little gem I like to call olive oil. This week however, the kale wasn't even close to being hidden- it was raw and honest and in full force. The first night, this recipe was actually pretty good, but by day two, I just couldn't do it anymore. But look at those colors, so very pretty!

baked herb and pistachio falafel

Ever heard of falafel? Ever think of making it? Nope, me either, it looked scary and, oh by the way, what exactly is it anyways? Well, never say never around here because I happened upon this recipe today and realized that falafel is basically just a bunch of goodness baked all together, so we gave it a go. It was SO good. Instead of tahini sauce, we combined cashews, lemon, salt and water as a substitute. This recipe is really easy but does take some time. Sunday night might be the best bet.

destroy (!!)

This pup has been in full on destroy mode these last few weeks. He got a haircut and all of the sudden, gained all sorts of power and confidence ... and has since decided to tear our material lives to shreds. Shoes, pillows, rugs, blazers, you name it. It's fine though, I guess. Teaching us not to value material things? Last week I came home to my anthro mags ripped to pieces all over the house. It was raining fashion dreams. Instead of throwing my hands up in defeat, I just photographed the scene of the crime. Gus: 8, Al&Meg: 0.

garage sales

There is something so fantastic about garage sales I can hardly stand it. Hidden gems just waiting to be discovered (or re-discovered) around every corner, I mean, it's just exhilarating. Here are a few of our new (old) treasures that have found their way into our home this year. No, we really haven't any place to put these new discoveries (hence the brass bed under the current bed), but we are suckers for a good deal. They need to be finished and painted and polished, but for now, they are perfect. There's just something about building a home that you've really worked for that makes me so very happy.

first lake day of the season

We snuck away to the lake this weekend to celebrate Easter with Al's family. The wind on the water was indeed chilly, but getting out into the sun again felt nice. The trees are still winter bare, and it feels like an entirely different lake than the lush summer look that we are accustomed to. On the boat Gus was cautious, to say the least, crawling up into our laps the whole ride, but we are still hoping for a lake dog come summer. We shall see...