Saturday, November 26, 2011

Tis The Season

Now that Thanksgiving is over the hubs and I are so so excited to start decorating! Growing up, Christmas wasn't really a huge deal in the Mitchell household so I never really looked all that forward to the Christmas season. However, once I became apart of the Etheridge clan I inherited the obsession with the holiday season! Therefore, the instant we could get away with decorating, we began ;) The first thing I did was make a wreath. I've been wanting to make you one for ages and once I found a cheap wreath at Wal-Mart I got to it...

After I sprayed the wreath with "Snow"

Fake Snow


I bought some Martha Stewart plastic ornaments(I know, you're not surprised are you?) and some berry decoration at Home Depot. Then I simply tied the ornaments onto the wreath with flower wire after Mitchell wrapped the whole thing with lights! I think it came out pretty well for my first wreath. 

We also put up some Christmas lights on the house, which was the part that Mitchell was most excited about....

First time putting up lights!!

We are both so excited that the holidays are finally here! Hopefully we will be going to get our tree tomorrow or maybe next Sunday. As soon as we get it up and decorated I will post pictures for all to see ;) Although we left over 1/2 of our Christmas decorations at home in Georgia (boooo) hopefully it will turn out ok! Happy Holidays to all!!

The Etheridges

Friday, November 25, 2011

A Whole Lot of Food and Even More Thankfulness

Mitchell and I were so blessed to spend Thanksgiving with one of my sweet friends, her husband, and family yesterday! They were so kind and invited us over, knowing that we couldn't share the holiday with our family back home. The food was amazing! The menu was complete with fresh cranberries, stuffing, turkey, smoked ham, green bean casserole, and much much more. Mitchell and I made the green bean casserole (which I will post about at another time) and the chocolate pecan pie. I got both recipes from Paula Deen's website and both were simply delicious! The best part was, they each only took about 5-10 minutes tops to prepare and then we just popped them into the oven. Here's the recipe for the chocolate pecan pie which I recommend to anyone...

1   (9-inch) unbaked "deep dish" pie shell
2 cup pecan halves
3   large eggs, beaten
3 tablespoon butter, melted
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoon good-quality bourbon
3 ounce semisweet chocolate, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
Cover bottom of pie crust with pecans. 
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and melted butter. Add the corn syrup, sugar, bourbon and the chopped chocolate. Stir until all ingredients are combined. Pour mixture into the pie shell over the pecans and place on a heavy-duty cookie sheet. 
Bake for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and continue to bake for an additional 25 minutes or until pie is set. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

And here are some photos that I took while making mine. I always like visuals when I'm cooking so I know what things are supposed to look like along the way ;)
Step 1: Place pecans in bottom of pie crust

Step 2: Mix all other ingredients

Step 3: Pour mixed ingredients into pie filling!
Pecans will rise to the top.

All done!!!
As you can see this recipe was super easy and it is SO yummy! It will certainly be a staple in the Etheridge household every Thanksgiving from now on! The only thing that I did differently from the recipe was that I used a "deep dish" pie crust. The first time I made it it overflowed with just the regular pie crust. This size was perfect! 

Here are also some photos we took yesterday while cooking and spending the morning at home with Winston...

Making Green Bean Casserole! 
Our first Thanksgiving as the Mr. & Mrs. :)

Mitchell and I are both so very thankful that we were able to spend our Thanksgiving together as a married couple even though we couldn't be with our families in Georgia! As far as things that I am thankful for this year, I don't even know where to begin. Although this past year was both the best and worst year of my life, God has truly shown me that I have so very much to be thankful for. I am thankful for such amazing and faithful friends and family that have surrounded both Mitchell and I with love and prayers after the death of my sweet mother and for their unrelenting support. I am also so thankful for such an amazing husband who has been through both the best of times and the worst of times with me over the past year and who has always been such a strong support system in my life. My mothers death has shown me to be thankful every single day, not just on holidays, for the people in my life and to make sure that I make the most of every never know when it may be your last.

I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving! Sending love to all our friends and family we couldn't see this holiday season :)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

If there ever comes a day...

Missing my sweet mamma a little more
than usual today.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Office

Here are the photos of the office wall that I promised! After being inspired by a friend that did something similar, Mitchell and I set out to make one of the walls in the office a white board. We figured it would be a great thing to have once UPT starts and we also needed an excuse to get rid of the clutter in there and make the room usable. Here are some photos we took during the process of making the wall fixture....

The wall "before". Also notice the picture wall to the
left that I posed about earlier this week!

Besides the panel board, these were the only other
supplies that we needed to put it up.
Before it was hung

Handy Hubs!

The wall "After". Also notice the curtains
I spoke about in my last post.

Finally done! Please ignore the state of my hair...

All in all it was a very easy project and I think Mitchell will really love having a white board wall to use once he has to start studying for pilot training. He calls the office his "man cave" now and Winston already loves hanging out in there with him!

Speaking of Winston, we broke down and bought him a doggie door the other day for the sliding glass door to the back yard. We figured with Mitchell having to head back to work and me working now it would be a good thing for him to be able to come and go as he pleases when we aren't home. He loves it now that he's gotten over the fear of the oh so scary flapping door!

Winston's new door!

Mitchell had to head back to his job this week, meaning the same one he had before he went to IFS. We aren't super excited about it, but we know God has a reason behind sending him back instead of letting him spend some time at home before UPT begins. Other than that, I've been working a good bit lately which has been exhausting and honestly a little more than I signed up for. Hopefully things will get better though, prayers are greatly appreciated that I can bulldoze my way through the holidays which I am sure are going to be a busy time at the store. I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend before Thanksgiving! On a final note this is what I'm going to attempt to make tonight, and if all goes well I'll be making it again next week for Thanksgiving :)

Paula Deen's Chocolate Pecan Pie! I mean, what
girl from the south doesn't know how to make
a pecan pie?! Wish me luck!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Back In The Saddle

Well, this past week and weekend were  eventful so I'm glad I finally have something interesting to post about! Mitchell is finally back from IFS (yippee) and our family is whole once again! He finished up last Wednesday and was back by the end of the week. Mitchell passed IFS with flying colors and is now just awaiting pilot training to begin on December 21st!

Winston was so very excited
to see his daddy!

Our Saturday tradition of pancakes for breakfast!
My hubs is always so sweet
and puts some chocolate chips in mine :)

Other than Mitchell returning from cold and snowy Colorado we had a busy weekend doing things around the house! We finally happily finished cleaning out the office which wasn't even useable when he left for training. We figured it would be a good idea to make Mitchell a "study room" with UPT starting soon and to be honest he just wanted a "man cave." I'll post more about this room later, but we fixed it up real nice with some curtains I got at Ross for super cheap, some pictures we had been meaning to hang for ages, and by setting up his desk! We also made a dry-erase board that takes up one whole wall that I'll post pictures of later! 

The USAFA photo wall we made
with Mitchell's diploma in the middle! 

All in all we spent our weekend eating lots of unhealthy food (sorry diet) and fixing up the house! We also hung the curtains in our bedroom which I'll post a photo of with the white dry-erase board.

This week doesn't really hold much for the Etheridge family. I am working a few days and doing lots of school work while Mitchell begins checking off his list of To Do's before UPT begins and spending time with Winston while I'm at work :)

We are also so very very excited that Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up! After a trip to Home Depot yesterday, where we purchased some Christmas lights, we can hardly wait to put up decorations. However, we are trying to be good and at least wait until Thanksgiving is over before we start hanging things up for the holidays! 

On a final note, here is some yummy Pumpkin Bread I made tonight...mmmmm I'm so ready for the holidays :)


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Adios Colorado

I am very proud to announce that Mitchell just completed and passed his check ride a few hours ago, wooo hooo! We are both SO excited that he is done and has officially passed IFS :) Everyone's prayers and thoughts helped a great deal and luckily the weather held out today and yesterday even though it was supposed to rain/snow the past two days! He should be heading home tomorrow morning (finally) and be back late tomorrow night or early Thursday afternoon. Here's a photo from when he soloed the other day that I meant to share in my last post....

I'm such a proud wife :)

For those of you that have been concerned about Winston, he is doing much better today :) He seems to be over his sickness, or whatever it was, and is back to his usual self! Thanks everyone for checking up on him via text and Facebook posts. He certainly knows he is one loved pup! That's all the exciting news for now and I hope everyone is having a wonderful week so far!

Winston on an early morning walk!
I've been trying to get him out and about
every morning before I go to
work if I can!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Happy Halloween

Here are the photos of the cute little Halloween luminaries I made the other week before I left to come home! Yes I realize it's almost a week after Halloween, but better late than never right?! Anyways here are the photos I took...

Most the supplies you will need! Minus the
paintbrushes and the mason jars.

After the first coat of paint!

Ta Da! Glossed up and ready to go!
As you can tell they were super easy to make and turned our really well! I used a small foam brush to paint the jars and then a fine point art brush to paint the faces. The orange paint didn't cover as well as I had hoped but the green did really well. Here is the link for the original posting I found this project through! Thanks Pintrest ;)

For those that would like an update on what's been going on with the Etheridge's, I am still here in Del Rio all on my lonesome with little Winston. Mitchell should have been done today but due to bad weather and just plain bad luck he won't be back till most likely the end of next week. It also looks like the weather is supposed to be pretty bad on Monday and Tuesday in Colorado, meaning no flights those days. So, that could end up pushing his graduation date back even further. We are both struggling at this point to stay positive and upbeat. It simply feels like they are doing everything they can up there to keep him longer :( Prayers would be greatly appreciated for a quick trip out of there this coming week! 

Little Winston seems to be coming down with something as well. Ever since last night he has been very "mopey" and simply won't move on his own. I had to literally carry him to bed last night. I'm hoping he is just really sad and missing his daddy a lot and that it isn't something more serious.

Other than that I'm just trying to keep myself busy with work, school, and friends and hoping that Mitchell can get back home to his family soon. We miss him so much but are so proud :) That's all for now!