Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Heat Is On...

As we approach the end of May here in Phoenix it is just the beginning of the Heat Season. The season where the temperature will go above 100 for consecutive days in a row. The first 100 degree day of the year was recorded on May 21st topping out at a high of 101 for that day. Since then, we have not hit 100...yet. There was an article that was sent out talking about if this season would be cooler overall since we hadn't hit 100 yet. There is no real connection with the overall seasonal temperatures and the date of the first 100 degree day (as statistics were collected and analyzed). It will definitely be a shock to me as I've never seen temperatures above 100. I'm a bit excited to see temperatures go beyond 100 just for the pure joy of seeing it. The heat here in Arizona is dry, not much humidity at all, so it's a nice heat, for me anyway! I've never seen humidity values as low as they have been here, in the teens even. As I'm well aware and have been informed the Monsoon will bring humidity back up and should be quite the show for severe weather here in Arizona. I'm also excited to see that and a dust storm or two.

This is the forecast for next Sunday here in Phoenix as of now, 111 for the high! Dew points in the mid 20's, I just can't believe it. People have told me that when the wind blows here that it feels like a blow dryer, and they are correct. It does.

As I'm writing this the current temperature is 98 degrees here in Phoenix. Some people love warm weather, some people love cold weather, some like the beach and some like the snow. I wouldn't consider myself a true meteorologist unless I've been able to experience as many different weather types and phenomenons as I can. I am really looking forward to the 100+ degree weather just to experience it. I can't say that I don't miss the snow in Colorado because I do. I can also say it is no fun to get in your car and use oven mitts on the steering wheel to drive, because I have done that too.

Images courtesy NWS Phoenix

Saturday, May 29, 2010

May 29

It's almost too unreal to believe that 6 years ago today I graduated High School. I really can't understand how time went by so fast. I know it's only 6 years but it's still 6 YEARS! I am pretty proud of myself having done all that I've done and gotten as far as I have today. I know that 6 years ago I sure didn't think I'd be where I am today! Here's to the next x number of years until I accomplish more.

I can't seem to find any pictures (digital) to upload here or a logo, so I'll look around and see what I can find!

Our class song was "Learning to Fly" by Tom Petty. Great song, I do love Tom Petty. Our mascot was the Eagles and our colors Black & Gold. Half of my wardrobe is Black & Gold thanks to all the sports and school events I was part of.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Food Frenzy & Great Thursday

Was feeling pretty inspired today after a great workout and some dancing around the house to Rolling Stones & Def Leppard brought on this post! Some new finds for meals & tasty ideas I've come across this week. First off, a very yummy, cool, refreshing drink we were turned on to. Combining Arizona Pomegranate Green Tea with Lemonade. A new and tasty twist to an Arnold Palmer. Delicious!
For lunch today I was in the mood for something kind of light and quick, but didn't want to make a sandwich. So I decided to make some pasta and use some pesto sauce I have in the fridge. I did find a recipe to make home-made pesto sauce, so that will be my next task. I'm also going to be making homemade pasta, can't wait!
Then for dinner I was still in a pasta mood, haha! So I made Italian sausage with grilled peppers and onions with penne pasta in a tomato sauce. Yummy!!
Next up: I'll make sure to include pictures of the yummy homemade pasta, hoping to make ravioli and some more sausage dishes. I'm planning to make whole wheat pasta. I also want to try some homemade sauces and I got a recipe from my aunt for some brownie-cookie bites, sounds yummy! I'm still on the veggie-rice kick, but trying out other things :)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Happy Day of Birth

Happy Birthday to Josh! Today is his birthday. He usually always tried to get the day off work and leave town, but sadly it hasn't worked out the last couple of years. Here are some photos from previous years and events. Sort of a photo-blog recap for him. Happy Birthday Joshy!
April 2006

May 2006

May 2006

August 2006

December 2006
August 2007

February 2008

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday Evening

An end to a weekend and a start to a new week. Thought I would post a quick note before heading off to bed. Saturday was a 2 year anniversary for the Windsor, CO tornado that struck very close to home for me. It was a very large part of my life for the last 2 years as I was part of the Colorado Spirit and University of Northern Colorado Student Chapter of the AMS team to help educate people around Northern Colorado about tornadoes, severe weather and safety of such events. I really enjoyed doing all of this. I like helping others and teaching people about these events. Maybe it will be a path I take later on in life. With this anniversary I have been watching as closely as I can (given I'm in Arizona!) to the skies for severe weather over the last week. What a rush it must be to be out there chasing. I'm living vicariously through my storm chaser friends and loving all of the pictures and videos pouring in. Great job to all! I hope someday I can be fortunate enough to chase more often than I have so far. I'll include a picture of a tornado I was able to chase last year in Wyoming. This was the La Grange, WY tornado on June 5, 2009. My very first tornado! Needless to say I was pretty ecstatic about this! I didn't get as close as I probably could have, but given I was chasing by myself (not the intended plan) and didn't have a good network of internet or radar or map of the roads (thanks to a few friends via phone for the needed info) I got as close as I could and felt safe.
Weather is such a passion of mine and I am so lucky to share this passion with a great group of close friends. Have a great week!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Inspired by Hey Gorgeous's blog I decided to do a post on inspiration. A little bit wise this morning :)
I'm not perfect.
I'm just me. 
I love the rain.
I could sit and stare at the clouds or stars for hours.
I love to learn  new things.
Science makes me happy.
I love watching, playing and talking sports.
Grew up playing outside with the boys, so I'm tough.
I love a good love-story, chick-flick, tear-jerker movie.
I look forward to tomorrow and what the future holds.
I'm a pretty positive person.
I love my family & friends more than they know.
The little things in life make me happy.
I dance for no reason at any time.
I think people who look for the good & fun in things have more fun.
People who believe in themselves first are happier.
I laugh at myself.
I'm afraid of the dark. Seriously.

I'll leave with this lyric from KC & The Sunshine Band:
"I'm walking on sunshine, Whoa-oh, and don't it feel good!"

images found here and here

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Forces Unite

My mom & dad came into town this weekend from Colorado and my brother also came in from California. This weekend was a much needed family weekend. We are so lucky to have such great family. And this is only half--now that we are married we get twice the family! I'm so excited to spend this weekend with my Mom and Dad and Brother and of course my Joshy :) We've enjoyed grilling brats, kabob's and veggies out on the grill and sat to enjoy the evening. I'm such a family oriented person so I just love these get togethers!
These pictures are not recent. The first one is from November 2006 in San Diego, CA; the second is August 2006 in Greeley, CO and the third is from January 2009 Las Vegas, NV.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Makes your mouth water

Wanted to include some pictures from some of the amazing meals I've cooked lately. Really been in the cooking mood and really craving these great asian dumplings/pot stickers. I almost can't make them fast enough I just want to eat them! The problem might be that our steamer only holds 3 at a time. Speaking of the steamer, I absolutely love it! I've found myself making steamed rice 5-6 times a week. This could be bad to eat this much rice, but who cares it's great! I for one love steamed rice. And I've taken different angles on it too. I've make fried rice with broccoli and zucchini and yellow bell peppers. I love veggies!

Wa-la! The fried rice using brown rice. Very tasty! With veggies.

Our wonderful rice cooker!
Also Will include a couple pictures from the previous post I did with this Tangy Turkey Meatball recipe. It was very yummy and made a great meal, or would be a great appetizer!

Last night I made asian pot stickers/dumplings with a recipe I have in my Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook. I made these previous about a month ago. And man oh man were they good! I needed to use up some of the wonton wrappers I had and just craved them. I'll find the recipe and post it here very soon!
Last night I made the pot stickers with ground beef, onion, ginger and lemon with a hint of garlic. I had more beef than I did wrappers so I used the rest and made the meatballs. I sauteed some veggies (zucchini, yellow bell pepper and some onion) in olive oil and served it all with some of the dumpling sauce I very much love! The sauce consists of:
Soy Sauce
Siracha Hot Sauce
Splash of Apple Cider Vinegar

Yum! Can't wait to cook up some more goodies. Looking forward to making some great Chewy Chocolate Drops with a recipe my Aunt Sandi just gave me. Sounds good to me!

Have a wonderful week all!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mothers & Women

Happy Mother's Day. Whether you are, were, will be or want to be a Mother, we should all be fortunate for all the wonderful women in our lives, as my Mom put it so nicely :) We should be thankful every day for all the women in our lives. I am so lucky to have so many great women in my life. So many of my good friends have become mothers in the last few years and I couldn't be more proud. To watch them become a mother has been such a life changing event, even more so to them I'm sure, but it has also been very beautiful. Women are so strong, beautiful, amazing people. To be able to grow something inside of you for almost a year and be able to push it out of your body is just such a beautiful thing. I'd like to thank all the women in my life for just being them and being so wonderful to me. I hope that one day I will be half as good a mother as mine has been to me. Happy Mother's Day, and more importantly Happy Women's Day :)

My Mom & I on my wedding day
Josh & His Mom
Josh with both of his grandmothers
Josh and I with my Grandma & Grandpa (closest to me) and his Grandpa & Grandmas
Josh's sister Steph with her son Kayden (she's next to be married this summer!)
Stephanie who just had her first baby boy March 22
Leota who is due with her first baby boy August 28
My cousin D'anne with her daughter Tea
My cousin Alexa with one of her twin daughters Ava & May
Me and My Brother with our Grams
And this is my "baby" Lucy. She sure has gotten big :)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Tribute to Mother's Day

I love celebrating Mother's day simply because I love my Mother and my Grandma. The last few years have become more meaningful with so many of my good friends becoming mother's. I hope that one day I can be as good of a mother as my mother and grandmother have been to me.

My mom is and always has been my best friend. I'd say I am pretty lucky because during my pre-teen and teenage years I didn't fight or rebel against my mom like some teenage girls do. Maybe I was the odd one? Who knows. I've always respected her, whether I understood her logic or not, and I knew she knew best. It wasn't so much that I feared my mom but that she meant business and I respect that. Like I said, she is my best friend. My grandma, or Grams as I call her, is also one pretty amazing lady! She's always been full of great advice, fun sayings and she will tell you the truth! She is pretty honest when it comes to what she likes, dislikes or what is bothering her. I would say when I was younger that I may have feared her and was afraid to get in trouble. It is one thing to get in trouble by your parents but Grams will punish you harder! Lucky for me, I didn't get in trouble all that often!

My Mom & I Sept 2006

As for my friends that have become mother's, I must say I respect them even more. As great of a friend as they have been to me, to watch them become mother's is just amazing. It is really great to watch people become parents and how they can care and love one another so much. Like I said, I can only hope to one day be such a great mom.

So here's to all the Mother's out there, Mother's to be and Grandmother's. Thank you for being such a wonderful Mom.

My sister Steph & Kayden May 12, 2007

I don't have pictures of all my favorite mom's out there, sorry!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Having some fun....

Spaghetii, made my own way!

Went for the easy dinner idea last night: Spaghetii. However, I wanted to do something a bit different. I guess it's not really that different, just wanted to give it a twist. At first I really wanted to do a spaghetii bake and I wanted to use penne noodles but I didn't have enough. So I went traditional with spaghetii noodles. It was yummy! This recipe is really "make-it-how-you-want-it".

Spaghetii a-la Veggie:
  • 1/4 to 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 - 1 lb ground turkey (or ground beef, all I had was about 1/2 lb turkey)
  • 1/2 to 1 whole green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small zucchini, diced
Start by putting the onion and garlic in a deep pot with some extra virgin olive oil. Saute onions & garlic until onions are tender. Add meat (ground turkey was great!) and brown. Add veggies. These veggies were terrific! You can add other veggies if you'd like; yellow or red bell pepper would be great, I'm sure mushrooms would be tasty as well. Cook for a few min but don't let the zucchini get too soft; it was nice to have a little crunch in the sauce with the fresh veggies.
  • 1 can Hunt's spaghetii sauce, large--20oz or so (any flavor you'd like, but probably best to stick to something fairly simple. I used garlic & herb, I love garlic!)
  • 1 can diced/peeled tomatoes (to add more sauce)
  • 1-2 Tblsp oregano
  • 1-2 Tblsp parsley
  • 1-2 Tblsp garlic salt
Season to your own liking, with whatever you like. I personally love garlic. You can also add season to the meat before or as you add the veggies. Let sauce simmer/cook on low for about 10-15 min as you cook your noodles. Cook noodles to your liking, amount and kind. I am in love with wheat noodles lately and they are great for you! I hope you have a wonderful dinner!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Dinner tonight...

I've planned out some meals for the week. Makes it easier when you work crazy hours like I do! So for tonight: Tangy Turkey Meatballs. From the recipe book I have & love, Taste of Home, thanks to my Grams. The recipe calls this to be an appetizer but, I can just make it a meal by adding some rice or noodles or just eating these alone!

I tend to alter recipes quite often, since I don't always have exactly what they call for or I want to make it my own! That's all the fun of cooking, and I really do love it! For this recipe I am using a bit more meat, so I will make more meatballs, but you can always do with the ingredients what you want.

Tangy Turkey Meatballs:
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 Tblsp dry bread crumbs
  • 2 Tblsp chopped green pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 drops hot sauce (siracha hot sauce for me!)
  • 1/3 lb lean ground turkey
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tblsp water
  • 4 tsp lemon juice
  • 4 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoon molasses (I will use sugar-free syrup instead)
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
Start by combining  egg white, garlic and hot sauce in a large bowl. Crumble turkey over mixture and mix well. Shaping into 1-inch balls and place on a small nonstick skillet, brown in oil over medium heat and drain.
Combine the sauce ingredients & pour over meatballs. Bring to a boil, reduce heat & cover to simmer for 10 minutes or so. This recipe yields 8 meatballs.