You’re Just The Girl I’m Looking For

facebookAt the end of July 2013, I received a new friend request on Facebook. It was from some guy I didn’t know but we had a few mutual friends in common. Still not knowing him I decided on not accepting his friend request. I am not one to add people on Facebook unless I absolutely know you. I just don’t feel like it is necessary to have thousands of friends on Facebook if you don’t know or talk to over half of them. I also don’t add people who went to my high school if they are over 3 -4 years younger than me because usually they just want to be nosey.

During the middle of October I was going through all my friend requests again. I would accept or deny them just to clean up my requests. I then come to that guy’s name again. I just sit there for a while and then I clicked on our mutual friends. They were all people I had met through college at SMSU and all of them were my close friends. I decided to take a gander and I found myself pressing accept to this friend request.

You and Travis are now friends on Facebook. I just stared at the notification for a while. After adding him I just had to Facebook creep on him for a while. Lets be honest, we’ve all done it before. I looked at his ‘about’ section and the few photos he had. He seemed like an okay guy. I soon forgot about my new Facebook friend. The only time I would think about him would be on the rare occasion of an updated status.

During the middle of November I received another notification. Someone had posted to my Facebook wall. I clicked on my notification and it said, “Travis has posted a link to your wall.” I was immediately confused so I go to my Facebook wall and check it out. He posted “You’re the girl I’m looking for” along with the link to the song “Just the Girl by Click Five”. Now I was really confused.

I listened to the song and remember giggling to myself. I didn’t even know this boy. A day later there were multiple likes and comments. My friend Hailea decided to comment back to Travis on my Facebook account and say “I guess you’ve found me.” Apparently he thought I was flirting back because the following day he messaged me on the Facebook chat by giving me his number and telling me to text him sometime.

Okay are you kidding me? I would never think about texting someone I didn’t know. I thought he was kind of weird. But then I became curious so the following night I texted him. We began to talk and quickly got to know one another. Later that week we hung out for the first time.

We watched a movie at my apartment. It was late so I was wearing sweat pants and a t-shirt. As soon as he arrived we had the awkward hello. He picked out a movie on Netflix and we watched it in my living room. He sat on one end of the couch and I sat on the other. Half way through the movie he got up to use the rest room. I didn’t think anything of it but he took forever and I began to wonder what he was doing. Finally he came out and then he sat down a little closer to me on the couch. Although, he was still at least a person and a half away from me. The movie ended and he went home. Leaving as an awkward goodbye. He texted me once he got home saying, “sorry I don’t kiss on the first date but I hope you had a nice time”. I told him that it was fine and I thought it was really respectable of him especially since we didn’t know each other yet all that well. Before I fell asleep that night I wonder if he would text me again. I mean, I was wearing sweats and dressed somewhat like a slob.

The following night he had his family Thanksgiving but left early because he wanted to take me on a date to the movies. He picked me up and we saw “Thor”. I felt bad that he left his family Thanksgiving but he said not to worry because they had had Thanksgiving all day. That night before I left, he asked for a kiss. I felt my face get a little rosy but I leaned over and we kissed. I won’t lie, I was happy. As I walked up all three flights of stairs I found myself to still be smiling.

usEverything continued to move forward. We talked at night and hung out on the weekends. On December 17th 2013, he asked me to be his girlfriend. It had felt like I had known him forever. Obviously I said yes. We continue to grow and learn more about each other everyday. I hope to continue to grow with him and see what the future has in store for us. I hope one day he will be the one I say “I do” to in front of all our family and friends. All I know is that I am so thankful I accepted that friend request.

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Tattoo

Tattoo. One simple word. This may seem like no big deal to some and a huge deal to others. Tattoos to some are a way to display their creative side and is looked as, as an art. You see people with one or two tattoos and you see people covered in them. Some may whisper behind ones back about how tattoos are bad. Well who are they to judge? Does having a tattoo make you a bad person? Not necessarily. But yet again you hear comments being made about those who do have tattoos and how many they have.

“Oh they are probably a drug dealer”

“I wonder what their parents must think”

“What a waste of a good body”

“That is so unprofessional”

“They are harming their body beyond belief”

“Who would hire a person that looked like that”

The list goes on and on. People are always quick to judge someone. But why? It isn’t their body so why should they care what someone else does to it? I say it’s their body and they can do what they want. It doesn’t concern me. Getting a tattoo may send a message to the outside world about the person inside you. Today, it can be perceived that you have negative characteristics—that you are a freak, a weirdo, an outlaw.There are probably hundreds of reasons why someone may get a tattoo. To name a few: some get them as an appreciation of art, faith, family or culture.

Andrea's Tattoos

Andrea’s Tattoos

My two little sisters, who aren’t very little at all – they are ten months younger than me, have five tattoos each. I on the other hand, only have one and one is all I will ever have. For my sisters and I, each tattoo has a meaning or a story behind them. My sisters first tattoo they got with their best friend. After that they just continued to keep getting tattoos.

In January, 2014, one of my best friends wanted to get a tattoo. She made an appointment and asked me to go with her. She was getting an owl in memory of her grandmother placed on her lower back. I was planning on getting a tattoo in April or May if I worked up the courage. I had had my tattoo planed for years now, just never got it. Well Erin convinced me to get it in January with her. So I did. She went first and then it was my turn.

tattoo

My First and Only Tattoo

My tattoo was placed on my ribcage. I know, it is supposed to be one of the most painful places to get a tattoo. I figured this was good and it would make me never want another one again. But honestly it wasn’t as bad as everyone had made it out to be. I didn’t even flinch. Like my dad always says, mind over matter. The scariest part was listening to the little machine make loud noise as the tattoo artist tattooed my body.

I love that my tattoo is on my ribcage because I can cover it up and still show it off when I want to. My parents were surprised that I actually got a tattoo. They thought I would be to chicken. I got a dandelion that turns into four birds. This represents my family (my dad, mom, and two sisters) and I now always have them with me. I have a saying

underneath that says “Let faith be your wings”. I don’t know why, but I just love this saying. It

Mariah's Tattoos

Mariah’s Tattoos

means so much to me and it felt like a good idea for my tattoo. Although my parents were okay with me getting a tattoo my boyfriend on the other hand wasn’t as happy. He said that I ruined my perfect body. But the thing is, he has a huge tattoo that covers almost his entire back. So that didn’t really make sense to me. He has definitely gotten over it now. Tattoos are for some people and not for others. Remember there may be different reasons for people to get a tattoo and I don’t think thats any reason to judge them.Who cares if someone else doesn’t like it. It’s not their body and they don’t have to look at it everyday.

I absolutely love my tattoo and thats all that really matters.

Woof Woof

I have always been a dog person. When I was going into kindergarten we got a dog and named him Tucker. He was a mutt, which means he was a mixture of more than one breed. He was my best friend in the whole world. When I was in second grade Tucker passed away. I remember crying for almost a week straight. As a young girl this was rather traumatizing.

Half way through the third grade we got our second dog and named him Hunter. He was a mix between a Lab and a German Short Hair. We quickly became friends. I used to dress him up in my doll cloths and my dad would get so mad. Sometimes I would share my ice-cream cones with him taking turns to lick the ice-cream. Yeah, I know, it sounds pretty gross but I am still alive and kicking today. My Senior year at SMSU Hunter passed away shortly before Thanksgiving. It was pretty tough for me. It was so weird going home at Thanksgiving and not having him greet me at my car. I will never forget him.

Okay, enough of the sad stories, I would rather remember them as the fun and loving dogs that they were. Now that I am getting older I really want to get a puppy. Ah I fall in love looking at pictures of puppies online. Not to mention most of my friends have or are getting puppies. I told my boyfriend that we need to get a puppy. At first he didn’t think it was a bad idea. Then he realized we didn’t agree on any specific type of dog. See I would love to get a German Short Hair, but he absolutely refuses to get one. So we go back and forth between what we like and dislike. He has never had a dog before, his parents have always had a cat. I would never be able to have a little dog. They drive me nuts. The little ankle biters and yippy little things. Ahh they are so annoying.

The more recent talk about getting a dog though is we have to wait until we both graduate. He will be done with classes in December 2014, and I will be done student teaching in May 2015. We are both super seniors and cannot wait to be done with school. Anyways, then he decided that maybe we should wait until after we get married and maybe have a baby before we get a dog. That’s like 6 years away. That’s a long time. So he is all over the place. See I could wait to get a dog after we both graduate. That wouldn’t bother me one bit because I need to focus on school on the mean time. But waiting about 6 years to get a puppy, ahh I don’t think so. We will see what happens.

puppy 1    gs    puppy 2

Supernatural

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So many people become obsessed with some type of television series and then quickly become sad when it’s over. I used to love the television series “Friday Night Lights”. Then it came to the last episode. I was sad because it was over. Then it was like, well what do I watch now? The answer ladies and gentlemen, Supernatural. This show is great!

I am currently watching the fourth season of Supernatural with my boyfriend. Since I don’t get to see him everyday, I cannot watch the show everyday. We decided we would only watch it together so we stay at the same spot. Plus it gives me something to look forward to when I see him. We get to snuggle up on the couch and he makes fun of me every time I jump because I get scared. It’s just great. I love nights at home.

Anyways, back to Supernatural. It was first broadcasted in September of 2005. They are currently working on the tenth season. The series is filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia and surrounding areas and was in development for nearly ten years, as creator Eric Kripke spent several years unsuccessfully pitching it. Jared Padalecki as Sam Winchester and Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester, the series follows the two brothers as they hunt demons, ghosts, monsters, and other supernatural beings in the world.

Sam and Dean were raised by their father, John, to hunt and kill all “supernatural” lifeforms. Their mother Mary, was murdered by evil supernatural being when the boys were young. 22 years later the brothers set out on a journey, fighting evil along the way. For the longest time there father went missing. When they finally meet up with him, he reveals he knows what killed Sam and Dean’s mother. It was a demon, and John found a way to track and kill it.

Meanwhile, Sam begins to develop frightening abilities that include death visions, visions of people dying before it actually happens. These visions are connected to the demon who murdered his mother and its mysterious plans that seem to be all about Sam. When their father dies striking a deal with the very same devil that had killed his wife, Sam and Dean, now alone and without their mentor, are determined to finish the crusade their father started.

This is about as far as I have gotten into the series. I will have to continue to watch, but you won’t have to tell me twice. I love the suspense and the mystery part of the series. If you or anyone you know is looking for a great new series to watch, I highly suggest it. Both my boyfriend and I enjoy watching it, so it’s not like it is made for only one gender. If you watch it, let me know what you think!

natural

Spaghetti and Meatballs

spaghettiA mound of pasta smothered in homemade spaghetti sauce topped with giant meatballs, now what isn’t there to love about that? To make the perfect meal there are a few tips you should use. Planning ahead of time is the most important. What day you will be making this dinner needs to be decided beforehand because it takes hours to get ready. Another important thing to know is how many people this meal is being prepared for. The recipe I know feeds up to four people.

meatballsAt least three hours before you plan on eating, the meatballs need to be prepared. Start by getting a rather large bowl, because the ingredients must be mixed together before actually forming the meatballs. The first ingredients into the bowl should be: a pound of ground hamburger and an egg. Next, add 15-20 finely crushed saltine crackers into the bowl with the hamburger and the egg. Since I am gluten free I do not use saltine crackers, instead I use rice. I think they taste about the same. In order to add a little flavor to the meatballs, shake both of the salt and pepper shakers about four or five times over the bowl.

It is important to make sure all of the ingredients are mixed together very well before moving on. Following the previous step, you should start forming the mixture into balls that measure about two inches and place them into a pan with a little olive oil. Once you are finished, set the temperature on the stove between medium and high, and cook the meat balls for 25 minutes or, until they are cooked all the way through.

spaghet sauceWhen the meatballs are fully cooked, the sauce needs to be prepared. A fairly large crock pot will be needed for this step. Take one jar of spaghetti sauce and pour it into the crock pot. (I usually use my mothers homemade spaghetti sauce but any store boughten sauce will do.) At that time, take the thoroughly cooked meatballs and place them in the pot with the sauce. The pot will need to be turned on medium heat for at least three hours. This will help mix the flavors of the sauce and meatballs together giving you an ideal taste. Also, you do not want to put the sauce on high because you do not want the sauce to bubble and boil. The high temperature will cook your sauce way too fast and form a layer of burnt, crusty, hard sauce. Also if you cook the sauce too fast, it does not give the meatballs enough time to marinate in the spaghetti sauce. For that reason, be sure the crock pot is set on medium heat while cooking the sauce.

heartlandddAbout 10 minutes before the sauce is done, the noodles need to be cooked as well. This way, all of your ingredients for the spaghetti should be ready at same time. You may use whatever brand of noodles you care for. I use the brand “Heartland” which is a gluten free pasta.

The first thing that should be done before you start cooking is to set the temperature of the stove, on another burner, to high heat. Then, set a pot half full of water onto the burner and wait for the water to boil. Once the water is boiling, turn the heat down to a medium temperature and pour in your desired amount of noodles. Every few minutes, or so, the noodles need to be stirred in order to help prevent the noodles from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

noodlesAfter about 10 minutes, the noodles should be tested in order to see if they are cooked. To do this, use a fork to grab a noodle, run the noodle under lukewarm water and then eat it. If the noodle is still a little bit hard, then wait a few more minutes and test them again. If the noodles are soft, and not sticky, then they are ready. However, if the noodles are sticky, they have been cooked for too long. Once your noodles are cooked, pour out the excess water and place the noodles into a bowl because they are ready to be served. Finally, stir the spaghetti sauce and place the pot on the table along with a big ladle. Do this because now the spaghetti sauce is also ready to be served.

Lastly before eating, set your table accordingly to the amount of people you will be feeding. All that is needed are a plate, a fork, a cup for something to drink, and an appetite. Now that everything is ready, you can sit down and enjoy your astoundingly prepared meal of spaghetti and meatballs.

eat

Late Night Snack

Lemon: a yellow, oval citrus fruit with thick skin and fragrant, acidic juice.

Lime: a citrus fruit, typically green, acidic juice.

lemonLemon and limes are two simple fruits.While both are available throughout the year, lemons are in the peak of their season around May, June and August while limes are at their peak from May through October. Sometimes they are known as the “powerhouses” of fruits. They are actually very healthy for you containing between 10-20 calories per cup. They are loaded with Vitamin C. Lemons and limes contain unique compounds that have antioxidant and anti-cancer properties.

One of the tricks to finding a good quality lemon is to find one that is rather thin-skinned since those with thicker peels will have less flesh and therefore be less juicy. Therefore, choose lemons that are heavy for their size and that feature peels that have a finely grained texture.lime

Choose limes that are firm and heavy for their size. They should have a glossy skin that is deep green in color. While brown spots on the skin of limes may not affect their color, limes that are mostly brownish in color should be avoided since this may be an indication that they have “scald” which may cause them to have an undesirable moldy taste.

Most people wouldn’t look at them as a fruit to eat as a typical snack. But for my boyfriend and I, it is. Weird, I know. We usually cut up two lemons and two limes. We start off by cutting the ends off of the fruit. Then you need to cut the fruit in half. Continue by cutting the halves of the fruit into smaller pieces. You can take out any seeds you see along the way. Once they are all cut up you can eat! Sometimes I like to put a little salt on my lemons and limes. However, I don’t always. My boyfriend and I have gotten into freezing the fruit for about 30 minutes before we eat them. We find that it is easier to get all the fruit off of the skin this way. So this might be not be everyones typical snack but its something we oddly enjoy. 

Before writing this post I found a little more information about lemons and limes. I do not eat lemons and limes because they are healthy and good for me. That is just a bonus. My boyfriend and I eat them because we like the way they taste. Sweet and sour.

P.S. My boyfriend was simply thrilled to be my model as he cut up lemons and limes for us tonight! 😉

together

 

Leinie Lodge : Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin

leinenkugelsChippewa Falls, Wisconsin is home to the beer known as Leinenkugels. Leinenkugels was founded in Chippewa Falls in May 1867. The brewery was founded by Jacob Leinenkugel and John Miller. John Miller later sold his stake in the company in 1884. Leinenkugels has two breweries: the original, located in Chippewa Falls, and the 10th Street Brewery, located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

They currently have 10 active beers, 5 seasonal beers, and 14 inactive beers.

The active beers include: Leinenkugel’s Original, Leinenkugel’s Light, Leinenkugel’s Honey Weiss, Leinenkugel’s Red Lager, Leinenkugel’s Creamy Dark, Leinenkugel’s Berry Weiss, Leinenkugel’s Big Eddy Imperial IPA, Leinenkugel’s Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout, Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat, and Leinenkugel’s Canoe Paddler.

The seasonal beers include: Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy, Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest,  Leinenkugel’s Snowdrift Vanilla Porter, Leinenkugel’s Canoe Paddler, and Leinenkugel’s Orange Shandy.

The Inactive beers include: Leinenkugel’s 1888 Bock, Leinenkugel’s Amber Light, Leinenkugel’s Apple Spice, Leinenkugel’s Auburn Ale, Leinenkugel’s Autumn Gold, Leinenkugel’s Big Butt Doppelbock, Leinenkugel’s Bock, Leinenkugel’s Classic Amber, Leinenkugel’s Fireside Nut Brown , Leinenkugel’s Hefeweizen, Leinenkugel’s Maple Brown, Leinenkugel’s Special Ale, Leinenkugel’s Winter Lager, and Leinenkugel’s Northwoods.

There is a brewery in Chippewa Falls and alongside of it sits the Leinie Lodge. According to The Leinie Lodge it is “the place where the spirit, heritage and flavor of Leinenkugels lives.” There are free brewery tours given daily, a gift shop in the Leinie Lodge, and fresh brewed samples for those of age. 

Since I was born in Eau Claire, Wisconsin and my mothers family all lives in the area (Chippewa Falls, Bloomer, Cornell, and New Auburn) I know a little more about Leinenkugel’s than the average Joe. My Grandpa Joseph (Joe) and Uncle Teb both worked or are currently working at the brewery. My Grandpa did it for as long as I can remember and my uncle is still working there. Along with working at the brewery my uncle is also a full time dairy farmer.

Moving on, since I’ve turned 21 I have went to the brewery twice. The first time was during Easter (2014) with my parents and boyfriend. The second time was this past weekend, the day before my cousins wedding, with my parents, sister, and leinieboyfriend. This was my sisters first time she was able to drink at the Leinie Lodge since she turned 21. It was a lot of fun. You pay $1 to get a chip and a wrist band proving your 21. You trade your chip in at the counter for a glass. You then get 5 samples of Leinenkugels beer. Each sample you get they mark off on your wrist band. When you get to your last sample you can try one of the “special” beers on tap that day, which is usually an IPA type of beer. I personally don’t like IPA beers because they tend to be dark and leave a terrible after-taste in my mouth so usually I skip this sample.

 

For more information about Leinenkugels Brewing Company or the Leinie Lodge check out these websites: https://leinie.com/#landing and http://www.travelwisconsin.com/breweries/food-tours/jacob-leinenkugel-brewing-company-203813 .

md    Lodge    leinie l