Friday, September 28, 2012

September Lifted Spirits, and Lowered Bank Account Balances

In September...
We finally closed escrow on our condo (technically end of August, but whatever), and moved in to our first home just the two of us as a married couple!
After a long day of moving, we got together with HH's family to celebrate the birthday of the fabulous Grandma Beach Bum.
L to R: Aunt Fancy Chef, Cousin Study Buddy, Grandpa Beach Bum, Me, Tutor Girl, and Cousin Eyeshadow
We had our fabulous wood floors installed in the condo.  Quite the investment, but I am so happy with them!
Cute Apartment and I had some much needed pampering when we got mani/pedis a few days before she headed off to a romantic Catalina Island birthday trip!
We celebrate the birthday of one of my Handsome Husband's new law school buddies with a night out filled with yummy margaritas, beer, and Mexican food!
Our friends brightened our days and our home when they flocked to our house for a weekend of painting, which may or may not have included some pizza and beer alongside it.
And, tonight, we end our month on a high note when we head down to San Diego to see some our favorite boys bust some moves on the soccer field that HH poured his sweat, blood and tears onto not so many years ago!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Things Thursday: Things I Could do for Hours on End

1. Glue rhinestones to bottles of booze, ala Rhinestoned Wine Bottle.

2. Watch re-runs of old Real Housewives seasons - New York, New Jersey, OC, Beverly Hills, I adore you all.

3. Stay in the bathtub.  Once I get in there, I'm parked for a while.

4. Pinterest.  'Nuff said.

Follow Me on Pinterest
5. Color.  Like in coloring books.  What can I say, kid at heart.
6. Facebook.  Not a fact I'm proud of.
7. Talk to Best Friend Cute Apartment.  Seems like everytime I turn to HH when answering her call I'm telling him "it's only going to be a few minutes!" and what do you know, I'm hanging up an hour later.
Cut from the same cloth, I tell ya.
8. Look at old photos.  I especially love baby ones!
9. Daydream with my sweet Handsome Husband about our future - what our children will be like, where our forever home will be be, you know the drill.
10. Talk weddings.  It's been long enough since mine where I've recovered from the post wedding funk, where that's the last thing you want to talk about.  It's about time one of my girly friends gets a rock on her finger so I can talk gowns, centerpieces and favors again!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

On People That Dissapoint You

I think I have quite high expectations of people.  It's something I'm aware of, and it's something that has certainly caused tension in my relationships before.  I expect people to be perfect, to never make mistakes - and I have the hardest time forgiving them when they do.  I tell myself all I need is a hearfelt apology, but even with that, sometimes I'm not quite ready to move on when I feel angry.
And the only feeling worse than feeling angry?  Feeling disappointed by people.
Do you have anyone in your life who just seems to constantly disappoint you?
I do,
and you know what?
I'm done.
I am done giving those types of people the power to turn my day from wonderful to tearful.  Done giving them the power to make me feel worthless and low on the totem pole.  I am done allowing someone to make me simply an option in their life, when I continue to make them a priority.
Done.  Done.  Done.
But, how do I know that these people are actually in the wrong, and it's not my high expectations causing frazzle in my life once again?  I don't, and I won't.  But take me or leave me, I want the best.  And I can love you even if you're not perfect, and I can be there for you even if you're impeccable, and you don't have to be flawless to be in my life.  But I have to make a choice to remove the toxicity from my life - and something I find more toxic than almost anything?  Constant and continual disappointment.
Life is too short to wake up with regrets.
Love the people who treat you right.
Forget about the ones who don’t.
Believe everything happens for a reason.
If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands.
If it changes your life, let it.
Nobody said life would be easy.
They just promised it would be worth it.


Monday, September 24, 2012

5 Reality Stars I Want to Hang Out With

1. Jordan Lloyd from Big Brother, Seasons 11 and 13

I think she is about the sweetest thing to ever have existed. 
Plus, I'd love to share my Dating Tips with her so she can seal the deal with Big Jeff!
2. Ramona Singer from The Real Housewives of New York
I tend to think this would be a short-lived friendship, due to Ramona's crazy tendencies.
But, I think while it lasted it would be filled with Pino Grigio, lots of talk about how much we love our hot husbands, and tons of gossip.
3. Aubree from Teen Mom 2
I mean, are you kidding me?
She gives me baby fever every time her face flashes across the screen.
4. Heather Marter & Dustin Zito from The Real World: Las Vegas 2
I just want to double date with these two.
I think they are the cutest couple, and they seem like they know how to have a good time!
and last but not least,
5. Khloe Kardashian from Keeping up with the Kardashians
Khloe, khloe, khloe.
My all-time fave Kardashian.
I think she is so real, raw and absolutely hysterical!
Plus, I don't think my husband would mind meeting Lamar.

Which reality stars would you want to hang with?

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Nail Files

Best Friend Cute Apartment and I went to mani/pedis last Friday, and my God what a good idea it was.  Neither of us could remember the last time we had one, and I seriously think it may have been since my wedding in February of 2011 since I had a good ole fashion mani/pedi.
We tried a new place near where I work and we both live, and I am so glad we did!  It was fantastic!  Seriously, one of the best mani/pedis I've ever had!  The massage was awesome, and it included lemon rubs on your nails (not entirely sure what this does, but so fancy), and hot stones!  Cannot wait to go back there! Being totally honest, we did have appointments and poor Cute Apartment had to wait almost 20 minutes after I got started, but barring that it was a wonderful experience!
This is the color I'm still rocking from my manicure:
I wish I could tell you I was smart enough to jot down the name of the polish, but alas, I'm simply not that smart.  I love the color though, I think it's fun and bright.  But I am ready for some deep fall shades to put on these digits!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Lots of Link Love

Lots of Link Love 
Like Tara, I think it's important to emphasize the importance of community in the blog world and not only focusing on ourselves and our own blogs, but to spread lots of blog love to those who deserve it.  Every other Thursday, I will highlight the posts over the last two weeks that touched me, made me laugh, pulled at my heartstrings, and inspired me.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Cooking with Casey: Baked Halibut

One of my Handsome Husband's coworkers has a boyfriend who loves to fish.  And she is super generous and share some of the fantastic fish that he brings home, so a few weeks ago when HH brought home this halibut, I knew I could find a fantastic recipe to use.  And lucky for him, I like my fish raw, so he had it all to himself!  (Wouldn't you know it, the dude was so excited to take it to school for lunch, and left it there before even eating it!  One of his law school buddies lucked out with a yummy fish lunch instead of HH!)

Panko Baked Halibut with Mustard
Original recipe from HERE, slightly modified version below
Serves 2
2 large halibut steaks
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 lemon
Preheat oven to 375.
Combine mustard and melted butter in shallow bowl. 
Dip halibut steaks into mustard mixture, leaving them for 30-60 seconds to soak up the mixture.
I spread my Panko crumbs in a pie pan, and used that to coat the steaks in.  Place the steak in the crumbs, turn over and be sure to liberally coat the entire halibut steak.
Place steaks in a pyrex baking dish (I just used a 9x9, but you could use a baking sheet or another sized pyrex, I suppose).
Season with salt and pepper, and put into oven.
Bake for 20 minutes.
After removing from oven, squeeze about half of a lemon onto the tops of the steaks, and serve with lemon slices.  I served mine over rice.
This recipe got rave reviews from HH and his law school buddy - let me know if you try it!
Also, my guess is that it would work with many other kinds of fish.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Living With Your Parents: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

As most of you know, my sweet Handsome Husband and I have been living with my parents since a few months before we got married.  That's right, we spent the 19 months of newlywed bliss living with the good 'ol rents.  And there have been some really good things about it...some bad things...and some downright ugly things. 

And in the spirit of keeping it real - I'm sharing. 
Sorry, Mom and Dad - some of these might be TMI for you.
The Good
We got to spend lots of time with my sisters during their last few years of living at home, something we would have never gotten the opporunity to do otherwise.
HH got to know my parents in a much more intimate way, I don't think he would be nearly as close with them (especially my Gardening Momma) if we had never moved in.
We saved an insane amount of money, thanks to my very generous parents, who did not charge us rent, utilities or make us pay for the inordinate amount of food my HH eats.  Their generosity was a gift to us in and of itself, being that we were able to save the equivilent of one year of my salary.  It is a gift I don't know if I could ever repay, and one I will always be grateful for.

The Bad
No matter how much you love your family, there comes a time where you've just seen each other  Let alone too much for the last year and a half.

Newlywed bickering with an audience: double the fun!

It is a not super fun feeling when at the age of 24, you cannot have friends over when you want for however long you want.

The constant: "So when are you guys moving out?" stings every.single.time.

The Ugly
Lets just say there is nothing that can kill the mood, if you know what I mean, like having your parents 15 feet away from you in the next room.

Sibling arguing never really goes away completely, and is about the last thing you feel like doing at 24 years old, working 40 hours a week, trying like hell to act like a damn adult.

If you're like me, sometimes you just need a place to cry where no one can hear you, scream at the top of your lungs, or dance around in your underwear.  A 10x10 bedroom just doesn't quite cut it after a month or two.

All in all, it was a humbling experience that was a generous gift to us from my ever-generous parents.  There are not a lot of 24-year-old homeowners, and I can say unequivocally that we would not be where we are right now, had we not had their unyielding support.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

How I Met Best Friend Cute Apartment

I actually wrote this post months ago, but saved it for this little princess' birthday!  Happy Birthday, Cute Apartment!

I'm going to let you all in on a little secret.
From the ages of about 16-19,
I was sort of...
a bitch.
You know the type.
Too cool for new people (wait, I still think I'm a little too cool for new people),
thinks she's better than everyone (um...I'm not?),
everyone needs to prove themselves (rightfullly so...).
Maybe I'm still sort of a bitch!
Back to my story, when I was fresh out of high school, I was working as a waitress in a 50's themed diner, wearing this on a daily basis:

This might be a sexified version of my uniform for Halloween of that very same year. 

If you've ever worked in a restaurant, you know that the relationships you form with your coworkers is unlike any other.
You have a bond deeper than the average coworker, due msotly to a mutual hate for annoying customers, overbearing managers, and people who say "waters for the entire table".

And at my restaurant?  We didn't take on new people easily.
Especially new people who seemed to skip the career ladder path the rest of us had to take, putting in long hours for teeny tips as a host, having sore arms for a week after expo food running, and going home covered in dried ice cream after running fountain before you ever got to think about tying on a coveted server's apron.

So, in the summer of 2006 when this adorable blonde waltzed in the door with a flower pinned to her head telling us how she was going to be starting as a server (therefore skipping the all important steps that the rest of us bitter folks had to go through), you'd think we would have been throwing tantrums.

I mean, at the time, I wasn't even nice to new girls who weren't skipping steps, I sure as shoot shouldn't have been to ones who were stomping all over the rules with their adorable heels that I'm sure Cute Apartment was wearing at the time.

But something was different this day.
This day, I was feeling nice.
And in an uncharacteristic move (at the time), 
I befriended the girl, and encouraged everyone else to also.

And who would have thunk that making friends with this little blondie on a day when I was feeling way more friendly than my average at the time, would be one of the best decisions I ever made?

Friday, September 14, 2012

On My Very Merry UnBirthday

Tomorrow is my half-birthday, y'all! 
I don't usually celebrate these halfies, but I thought I'd share a wishlist in case anyone is dying to buy a little gift to celebrate me being 1/2 way through my 24th year.
(Let's not talk about the 25th birthday just yet, not ready.)
Source: via Casey on Pinterest
Source: via Casey on Pinterest
Source: via Casey on Pinterest
Source: via Casey on Pinterest

Are we seeing a small trend?
Basically, I'll take anything with a monogram.
(And I really do need a cute business card holder...)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Things Thursday: Things I've Been Up to Lately

1. Choosing and installing wood floors in the living and dining area of our new home.  Such an investment, but so worth it!

2. Walking down memory lane as I unpack boxes that I packed back in December 2010.
L-R: Garter caught at Tutor Girl and Cousin Ronomon's Wedding, Our wedding favors: custom shotglasses, A page from a scrapbook of "Our First Year", and one of our engagement photos circa 2009.
3. Getting back into cooking - something I've missed so much the past year and a half!
Two new recipes to the Stress Casey repertoire, L-R: Crockpot flank steak over rice, with sauteed zucchini, and baked halibut with mustard and panko crumbs, with strawberries. 
And no, we don't eat rice every night...coincidence that I only took photos on rice nights!
4. Watching my savings account dwindle as I furnish this home.  While it's so exciting and exactly what we've been waiting for, it's still quite depressing to see that number get lower and lower and lower.
5. Really missing seeing my parents and sisters every single day - which is so pathetic, being that I've been seeing them all at least twice a week since we moved out.
6. Enjoying a beer every once in a while out of the sweet aluminum bottles that were on sale what what!

7. Deciding who to root for on Big Brother as if I am a member of the damn jury.  I'm leaning towards Dan if he makes it to final 2 btw, BB fans.

8. Getting way overly excited for Fall premiers - what new shows are you all programming into their DVR?!

9. Being uber jealous of Grandma Beach Bum, who is celebrating her 70th birthday by lying on a beach in Hawaii.  Lucky lady!
10. Really wishing for a temperature drop, so that it can feel like FALL already!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Adventures in Pinterest: Bedazzled Wine Bottle

Last month, I shared some ideas I decided between when coming up with a gift for Best Friend Fashionista's birthday.

And today?  You'll see what I chose and how I made it!

The winning gift idea: 

But while I'm sure BF Fashionista would down that bottle of Patron, I wanted to give her a little vino instead!

My version:

And now lemme tell you how I did it!


Bottle of wine or any kind of alcohol of your choice
 I got mine at World Market, and chose it because I thought the label was adorbs.

You could probably use a regular paint brush, I chose to buy these because they are so cheap for a big pack.

I bought this assorted pack at Hobby Lobby because I liked the colors and it was on sale - it is literally enough for me to do probably 5 more bottles/projects.

Get a cheap pair just for crafts if you don't already have one - they will get crusty and you won't want to use them for your face anymore!

Start out by wiping down your bottle of choice with a damp cloth - glue sticks best to clean glass, so make sure there is no grime on there.  

Get your "work station" set up.  I laid down newspaper and used the lid from my pack of rhinestones to put a handful, so they were easily accessible by me and my tweezers.

Working in small sections, put a small glob of the adhesive directly onto the wine bottle and use the foam brush to spread it into one thin layer.  I worked with probably 2-3 inches at a time.  The adhesive dries pretty fast, and you don't want it to dry before you can get your rhinestones onto the bottle. 

You'll want to keep doing this until the bottle is covered to your liking.  I stopped before the stem at the top, because I didn't want it to be impossible to open by covering the foil at the top.

I started with the area directly next to the label first, and worked my way around the bottle as I went.  

I did the entire bottle in two nights, working on it maybe 3 hours each night?  I just did it while I watched TV, and it is pretty brainless until you get the the end and have to think a little bit about squeezing in the rhinestones in the perfect way.

I loved the way it turned out, and I hope BF Fashionista did too!

What was the last craft you did?  

Monday, September 10, 2012

The One Where a Racoon Wakes Me Up

Here's the thing. 

I don't live in the freakin' wilderness.  I live in the world capital of Suburbia (and oh, how I love it!).  So when a wild animal comes waltzing through my doors (or even in my yard for that matter), I don't go "Oh, look how cute, a wild racoon...", I go "HOLY SHOOT WHAT THE EFF!" (never any reason cursing around here...nope, no ma'am).

Let's back up.

A couple years back, I found myself alone in my parents house for the night.  At the time this was quite the rare occurance as 1. I didn't live there, and 2. Four other people did.  But those four were on a little family vacation (don't get me started on family vacays sans me, though I think I had a prior commitment that prevented me from going to the Grand Canyon or some other remarkable location), so alone I was in this big 'ole house.

I'm a special kind of crazy in that I am convinced that everywhere I am is dangerous, and my parents' ultra safe and crime-free neighborhood (seriously, you should read the Neighborhood Watch section of the paper, the craziest thing that goes on around is a high school rager) is no exception.  So while I appreciated the alone time, when it came to hitting the hay, I was nervous to sleep alone in the house.  So I did what any normal 21-year-old grown ass woman would do, and I slept on the couch in the middle of the house, therefore making sure I would be aware of the happenings throughout the place.  No one sneakin' up on me in my locked bedroom, nope - I'm waiting for danger right out in the open!

Flash forward to around 3am, I'd finally gone off to snooze land, and I'm awoken by what I think is our family cat eating cat food.  But the cat was going to town on the food (seriously, to wake my up it's gotta be loud, I can sleep through a lot).  So, I snap out out my slumber and peak over the back of the couch towards the cat's food bowl. 

In my middle of the night haze, my first thought was "Wow, the cat has gotten really fat lately." 

But as the sleep cleared from my eyes a little more, I realized it was not the cat at all, but a dirty nasty hungry RACOON.

(At the time our cat was an indoor/outdoor cat, and my parents always left a little window open for him to come in and out of.  Racoons are smart, yo.)

So with a screach and a lot of super ladylike language, I catapulted myself from the couch to my close by bedroom faster than I've ever moved in my life.  While in the bedroom, I searched for a weapon to scare the little asshole out of the house.  Being that I didn't live there at the time, and for that matter never kept weapons in the room when I did, there was nothing but some trash, computer cables, and a really uncomfortable futon at my disposal.  Until I looked to the corner of the room and spotted it: the umbrella.  The umbrella I would use to defend my house against this creature.

So with shaky hands and sweaty palms, me and my umbrella exited the bedroom.  I started tapping the top of the umbrella on the ground yelling at the Racoon.  Dude wasn't phased.  Then I started screaming, and opening and closing the umbrella.  Not only was the creature not scared, that f'er was intrigued.  He got closer, and that was my cue to leave.

Back to my bedroom I went, where I decided to give up the battle, and stay in my room until my mommy and daddy came home to save me until the morning, when I hoped like hell that the racoon would have left the house. 

To make a super long story still long, the racoon was gone when I awoke, and I've never encountered one in the house since. 

Moral of the story?  Racoons are not scared of umbrellas, and never sleep in your parents' house alone.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

70 Years Young

There is a couple who has changed my entire view on aging and getting older.  They made me reevaluate what I thought was old, and what age really meant.  They have managed to make me believe that the golden years really lie ahead of me, because of how enriched their lives are.

The couple in question: my Handsome Husband's Gradparents - Grandma Beach Bum and Grandpa Backgammon.

And on today, Grandma Beach Bum's 70th birthday, I have to reflect on how she really is 70 years young.

Grandma Beach Bum is fun-loving, kind, creative, sweet, innovative, energetic, and caring.  She is beautiful inside and out, and a blessing to everyone who she encounters.

Her and Gpa Backgammon do all these fabulous things - go to the beach, fun vacations, golfing, hosting parties and events at their home.  Heck, they are in Hawaii as we speak!

It is crazy for me to look back and remember just years ago thinking 70 was old, but how could I possibly feel that way now?  With a woman as inspiring and with so much to look foward to as Gma Beach Bum, who wouldn't want to age as gracefully and with as much joy surrounding their life as she has?

Happy Birthday, Grandma Beach Bum!
Thank you for changing the way I see things.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Dating Advice from a Real Expert

I know nothing about dating. 

I went on my last first date when I was 20-years-old, with a man I had known since I was 12, who ended up becoming my husband.  I never met a guy in a bar, cause I wasn't old enough to go before I settled down.  I never lived with a guy and felt what it was like to move out after a break up, because the only man I've ever lived with is my husband (and our roomates).  I know nothing about dating.

Since I like my outcome,
here's how I got here.
Dating Tips by Stress Case
Make sure you meet him nice and young.  Before high school is best, that way you both know what your awkward stage looked like in person and not just embarassing pictures.
Get nice and love sick over him at the ripe 'ole age of 12.  But be sure he has no interest in you back, it will make for great stories.
Hit high school, and finally move the eff on.  Date lots of boys, have lots of fun, and pretend like you don't give an eff about him.  But be sure he notices you.
Keep in contact via AIM (good times on the AIM), even when you're both dating other people.  Cause you're "friends" and all.
After years of a casual friendship, become best friends practically overnight.
Be sure to tell him every.  single.  detail.  about other guys, stuff you would only tell you girlfriends, etc.  Stuff you would on average not tell a guy you were interested in.
Cry to him over other boys - makes him want you so bad.
When he leaves the country for a month, keep in touch...often times about other guys you are dating.
Somehow manage to have him still like you after all that, and finally give him a shot.
Start a long distance relationship, and drive to see him every weekend.  Think this makes you over eager?  No way!
Meet his entire family within two weeks of beginning to date.
After a month or so of dating, decide you're moving in with him, upon his invitation.  An invitation that may or not be extended by his roomate first, but bygones.
Move in with him after dating for 4 1/2 months, and if you're anything like me: you'll have a rock on your finger in another short 4 months. 

I know nothing about dating.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Lots of Link Love

Lots of Link Love 
Like Tara, I think it's important to emphasize the importance of community in the blog world and not only focusing on ourselves and our own blogs, but to spread lots of blog love to those who deserve it.  Every other Thursday, I will highlight the posts over the last two weeks that touched me, made me laugh, pulled at my heartstrings, and inspired me. 


  • Amber is an effing genius, and if you like to use glitter nail polish but hate the removal, you need to read this post.
What was your favorite blog post that you wrote this week?
Share it with me, and I'll share it with my readers during the next Lots of Link Love!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Hunt to Homeownership: Our Journey, In Numbers

126 days waited for short sale approval.

42 days we were in escrow.

3 real estate agents who showed us homes.

437 emotional breakdowns, had by Stress Casey.

25 weeks waited from offer to closing.

40+ condos looked at, in over 5 cities.

3 times we were told we were going into escrow, only to have it fall apart.

2 offers put on other properties while playing the waiting game.

59 times I told Handsome Husband, "I really don't think this is going to happen."

days it's been since we've closed escrow.

That's right, y'all - our waiting paid off!
We are officially homeowners!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Labor Day

Happy Labor Day!
Hope you don't do have to do too much labor today!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...