February

Holy crap, I’m officially 24! I had an incredible golden birthday filled with family and friends.  To quote my identical twin Nicki Minaj, “I’m not lucky – I’m blessed.” My birthday was this past Sunday and I received lots of attention and cupcakes. This blog kept me busy the past month, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

#6 – TRY A NEW-TO-ME RECIPE ONCE A MONTH

This one got away from me this month and I just did it last night… meatloaf!  Has anyone ever really thought of the meaning of that word, because seriously, it’s a loaf of meat with some extra stuff to hold it all together. Thanks for the simple easy recipe Mom!

meatloaf feb

But check out the new casserole dish I got for my birthday… I’ll definitely be rocking that at the next church potluck.

Custom kickasserole dish!

Custom kickasserole dish!

#7 – MAKE A BATCH OF CUPCAKES ONCE A MONTH & BECOME A LEGIT CUPCAKE QUEEN

Remember, I amended this to cupcakes and/or dessert each month.  Here’s what I’ve discovered from my limited cooking and baking, you really have to plan ahead… I wanted to bake something simple one Saturday night, so I headed to Pinterest to find something quick and easy.  I came across Peanut Butter Brownie Cups. The picture was cute.  My picture is not so cute.  I had difficulties getting them out of the pan! However, they tasted fine! My dad even ate some and he claims to not like peanut butter.

What they should look like...

What they should look like…

I swear I used non stick spray...

I swear I used non stick spray…

#9 – LEARN HOW TO RING SOLO HANDBELLS

I’ve been playing handbells since 4th grade when I learned at church.  I continued playing in handbell ensembles through high school and college. It wasn’t until 2009 that I even knew solo handbell ringing was a thing and was really impressed by it. We have a new music coordinator at our church now and she’s done a great job of finding special music for the services, I took this as the opportunity to learn solo bells.  The first time I practiced my piece by itself, I had SO MUCH FUN, I was on such a high after that.

Just this past Sunday, on my birthday, I made my solo debut! I played “Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross” which was arranged for bells and piano. I am so proud of how it turned out.  I have the audio on file, if you have 4 minutes to spare, let me know and I’ll send you the sound file.  I’m looking forward to doing another solo piece and continuing to develop this new skill!

Solo ringing!

Solo ringing!

#17 – SEE ALL THE OSCAR NOMINEES FOR BEST PICTURE

This was a very fun task to complete!  There were 9 nominees this year and I was able to see 8 of them. The only film I wasn’t able to see was “Amour”, a French film that for awhile was only being shown in France (rumors say it was also in Chicago?!) I had to travel to Texas for work this month, I just didn’t have time to get to France.  I loved seeing all the movies, because I maybe normally wouldn’t have chosen to see them. Life of Pi was much better than I expected although my dad’s review of it was “Fish flies can’t jump that high” and “Never stick your hand in water with jellyfish”.

5 of my movie tickets - Life of PI, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, Lincoln, and Argo.

5 of my movie tickets – Life of Pi, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, Lincoln, and Argo.

The follow up to watching all the films is to watch The Academy Awards! I’ve been watching since 7th grade.  I’m incredibly nerdy about them as well and keep records of who I want, my actual prediction, and the winner.  This year I rocked an Excel Spreadsheet.  Out of 24 categories, I had 16 correct. I’m going to follow that up with, I don’t watch any of the documentaries or short films, so it’s a complete guess as to what it going to win.  I really wanted Jennifer Lawrence to win for Best Actress so I was incredibly happy she did.  And I LOVED Argo and loved that it won Best Picture.  Ben Affleck’s acceptance speech? Incredible.

#19 – DO A PINTEREST CRAFT PROJECT ONCE A MONTH

Inspired by Valentine’s Day and my love for Wonder Woman, I thought making cute Valentine’s Day cards for my friends would be fun.  After searching high and low for Wonder Woman stickers, I’m convinced she was under appreciated in the Justice League.  I ended up downloading various pictures of Wonder Woman cartoons and creating cute sayings for the cards.  I sent them out to my besties Sara and Nicki, as well as my sissy Jill.

feb craft

Valentine: You’re my Hero. Is being mega cute a super power? Hope you have a WONDERful day!

I’m not saying I’m Wonder Woman… I’m just saying no one has seen me and Wonder Woman in the same room.

#22 READ A NEW BOOK, 2 A MONTH.

I was able to travel to Texas for work this month, so I got my reading done on the plane.  Started and finished a book on the way there, and started and finished the other on the way back!

I started with Night Road by Kristin Hannah.  She is also one of my favorite authors because she creates incredible characters and back stories. I really enjoyed this book, it started maybe a little slow but once the plot picked up, I was on board.  Here’s a short write up of the book. “Night Road raises profound questions about motherhood, identity, love, and forgiveness. It is a luminous, heartbreaking novel that captures both the exquisite pain of loss and the stunning power of hope.” 

My next book was Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo.  Many of my friends had read it and I’m so glad I finally joined them.  This book is about a little boy’s astounding story of his trip to heaven and back.  It is so beautifully and simply written and made it me (more) excited for heaven.  “Heaven Is For Real will forever change the way you think of eternity, offering the chance to see, and believe, like a child.”

My one person book club.

My one person book club.

******************************************************************************************

Sorry for the long post – I’ve had a lot to do this month!  Can anyone help me decide on my 24th thing to do? My suggestions have been:

  1. Play your piano for 24 minutes a day for 24 days each month (can you guess which parent that came from?)
  2. Save more, spend less (also from the same parent)
  3. Take a trip somewhere by yourself
  4. Swing dance lessons
  5. Karate lessons
  6. Skydive (I’m nixing that, FYI)

Help a girl out!  Thanks again for all the support surrounding this blog and my list, it has been really fun so far!

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