Weekend Update: Thanksgiving Edition

Over the Thanksgiving weekend we traveled to Georgia to spend the holiday with my in-laws where we ate delicious food and enjoyed each others company. My beloved Gamecocks also beat our arch rival to make it 5 years in a row! It was a fabulous weekend and below are some highlights of our holiday!

Meeting my new “brother-in-law” for the first time!

The husband and I right before the turkey was put in the fryer
The finished product! It was the best turkey I’ve ever had!
The three Arnold pups!
Pumpkin getting in the Christmas spirit!
I hope y’all had a fabulous holiday weekend! I am so ready to experience the most exciting time of the year!
Stay southern,

Alternative Christmas Gift 2013

This year has been a WONDERFUL and adventurous year for Mike and I so we decided to keep up that trend for the holidays this year. We always have a hard time figuring out what to get for each other and truthfully it is so stressful, so this year I proposed a little different scenario to my husband. I never dreamed he’d say yes. So instead of giving each other gifts(that we probably wouldn’t be able to recall the next year) we have decided to spend that money(and a little extra) to head to Las Vegas after Christmas! Neither of us as ever been so we are extremely excited about the trip and about the holidays! And for me, it is that much sweeter that I do not have to stress over what to buy and will only need to stress about what to wear in the desert in winter!! We booked the trip last night and the countdown is on…46 days until Christmas and memories I am sure we’ll never forget!

Stay southern,

Honeymoon Five Months Later…

I just realized that I never shared about our wonderful honeymoon that we took two days after the wedding! Mike and I went to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and stayed at the Secrets Royal Beach Resort. We had the most fantastic and relaxing time of our lives and we talk about it constantly. Hopefully one day we’ll make it back there. We chose to go to the DR as it is where Mike’s dad was born and lived part of his life. Granted we did not go to Santo Domingo, where he is from, but it made us feel closer and more relatable to him because we have now been to his home country. As for choosing what resort to stay at, I did my research. I spoke with friends who had traveled there, I read hundreds of reviews on Trip Advisor and I waited until I felt comfortable enough to book it. I am so glad we booked when we did as the same package went up $500 the following week and just one month later it was over $1000 higher than we paid. If you do your research you can really get some good deals traveling to the DR.
We went the first week of June and the weather was perfect with highs in the 80s and lows in the upper 70s. It only rained once that entire week and that was at night so we didn’t even care. The service at Secrets was unmatched to anywhere we had ever stayed. We loved the all-inclusive resort as once we arrived everything was taken care of from food to drinks to the entertainment they offered at night. My favorite thing about the resort is that you weren’t under any schedule to do anything, you could eat whenever you wanted, if you didn’t want to dress up and go to a restaurant you could just order room service! Another perk of the all-inclusive experience are the drinks. You can have them make any drink you can think of! My personal favorites were the sangria, the cuba libre light(rum and Diet Coke) and the Mamajuana which is a native drink made from allowing rum, red wine and honey soak in a bottle filled with tree bark and herbs. I know you’re probably thinking that it sounds gross but it was actually pretty tasty and powerful! We brought some home to drink on our first anniversary next year. 
We seriously had the most amazing time in the DR and it will be a vacation that we’ll never forget. It was totally worth every penny!

Stay southern,

Cheers to 10 Years!

Last weekend Mike and I traveled to South Carolina for my ten year high school reunion. It was a quick 36 hour trip but we had an amazing time hanging out with old friends and seeing some that I had not seen since the day we graduated. Everyone had really changed and some lead some really exciting and intriguing lives! Little ole’ me won the superlative for Most Changed which was pretty awesome! I always love going home as it gives me a feeling inside like no other. Everything is green, there are mountains in the distance and the air just feels cooler and crisper there. 

Pumpkin doing a little ‘front porch sittin’
Me and the bestie!

Stay southern,

28th Birthday…Disney Style!

We spent my birthday at the Walt Disney World resort this year! Although it was a whirlwind trip, we had an amazing time. Every time we go it feels like coming home. Disney never fails to amaze me with the quality of the ‘product’ they have. There is no other company that is near to the same level of quality or caliber that they are. Granted, I may be a little biased. Mike and I did work there and met there, which shaped the rest of our lives in ways we could have never imagined. We have encountered many people that do not understand why we choose to do to Disney when we have no children. I love to explain to them that it is so much better and easier to travel there without a family in tow. Now granted I cannot wait to take a family one day, but with that said I will be SO glad that Mike and I went several times as DINK and got to experience what we wanted to while not being on anyone else’s timeline. It was a very short trip and I was pretty emotional when we left as I know we won’t be back for a while…but it will forever be a very important place for us Arnold’s and we’ll definitely be going back, again and again(if I have anything to say about it)! Here are some pics from our wonderful long weekend!

Great friends at Hollywood Studios

My favorite ride. Tower of Terror. You can see me in the back with my arms up!
Fun night at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party!
Coolest plant at The Land this trip! Tomato.

Home Sweet Home!
Cool new spot at the Magic Kingdom! Rapunzel’s Tower!
Amazing shot the husband took of me with his iPhone
If you would like to know any tips about traveling to WDW please do not hesitate to ask! I am no expert by any means but I would love to offer anyone my insight about traveling there and what you must not miss during your vacation!

Stay southern,

Labor Day Weekend Trip

For Labor Day we headed to Georgia to visit with family where we ate too much and stayed up late. We played games and ate more! It was nice to just hang out with everyone where we had no real plans or schedules! I really didn’t take any pictures which I now regret as we had some fabulous food that should have been documented! I did however take some adorable pics of some of our family puppies 🙂

This coming weekend we have our first tailgate here and we are very excited to start this season off right! It is projected to be hot, hot, hot so I hope we survive, gotta love summer in Mississippi!

Stay southern,

Beach Trip and DIY

Us on the car ferry going from Ft. Morgan to Dauphin Island

Wow this year is flying by. Today marks the end of the first half of the year! I cannot believe it, although I really can as it is June 30 and it is 102 degrees outside. Mississippi heat is a phenomenon that cannot be explained only experienced. It is the hottest place I have ever been and I hope to ever go! I digress! A couple of weeks ago I got to take a business trip down to the coast! Mike accompanied me and we spend a wonderful four day weekend at the beach! We ate extremely too much and got too much sun but it was a blast! It was our first time at the gulf in Alabama and it was so alien to see the oil and natural gas rigs out in the water there. We had a very informative couple of hours visiting with one of the scientific collaborators down at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab and that was the ‘business’ side of the trip! The rest of the time we spent relaxing, eating, shopping and exploring.

Fishing boat in the Mobile Bay 
Fort Gaines

Wicked storm on the Mobile Bay
Gulf Shores Beach
USS Alabama in Mobile
On another note, I have also been doing some more diy projects! I have many lined up at the moment but here are a couple that I have completed since my last post! 
First is the coffee table. There is kind of a funny story behind this. After I painted the nightstands and the TV table for our bedroom I had the painting/diy itch so I started looking for pieces of furniture that we did not have that I could transform from drab to fab on the cheap(most importantly) so one day as I was browsing craigslist I saw a coffee table located here in Starkville and I showed it to Mike and he told me to call about it. As I was putting the digits in my phone randomly it showed up as the number of one of my friends here in town. She and her husband were selling off all of their furniture before they moved back home to North Dakota. She was originally selling the table for $15 but offered me the friend discount so I scored it for $10!! In the picture you will notice that the table is missing a drawer so we knew we needed to figure something out. Mike and I made a fake drawer front for the table before painting and attached it with Gorilla glue(which btw is totally awesome). Next I painted the table and let it dry forever. It is now in our living room and even though I cringe we lounge our feet on it constantly! I already had the black paint leftover from the other tables and all I had to purchase was the wood for the drawer front and a drawer pull for about $6.00 for both. So I spent less than $20 on this table which I am super stoked about! I need some accessories to put on top of it but I have a couple of ideas up my sleeve about that for a later project!
After: close up
After: loving the new rug from Tracy!

The second project I did last weekend while Mike was out of town. I have been wanting lamps for our ‘new’ nightstands for quite a while. However they are super pricey as you have to buy the bases and then the shades and we are quite limited in the home decor department here in Starkville. So while browsing some diy sites on the internet I came across a couple of people buying thrift store lamps and painting them to match their own decor so I decided that this may be a way that I could have cool, funky lamps and not have to pay an arm and a leg for them! I went to the local Salvation Army and jackpot, there were like 20 sad and pathetic old brass lamps just sitting there waiting to be saved. I found two that were matching and when I checked if they worked and they did they were as good as mine. For $4 each I couldn’t say no. These two were wood as well as brass and although I hadn’t seen anyone online paint a wood lamp I thought what the heck, I’ll try it.  I also picked up a solid brass lamp for $2 for the living room that I will reveal later(when I find the perfect shade). I left there and immediately went to Lowe’s and picked up some spray paint and primer and went home and got to work. This took me all of about 30 minutes of total painting although I did have to wait 2 hours between priming and painting and that was the hardest part. I actually bought the white drum shades from Lowe’s as well which was my largest expense at $14 each. However the price of the shades were worth it because even if I decide that I don’t want blue lamps anymore I can repaint them and still use the white shades. I picked the blue as I was trying to have another color in the room besides the gray and yellow and I tried to match the blue color to the blue in the fish picture above the bed. I love the finished product and it makes me happy every time I walk into my bedroom! This was my favorite project so far!
Before: so sad and blah

After: so funky and fresh!
After: Pumpkin enjoying the new lamps and bedding!

Stay southern,

Catching Up

I am a bad blogger. It has been a while since I have checked in probably because this is a highly stressful time in our household. That does not mean that nothing fun has been happening it just means that I have a lot more things taking up my time that are not as fun 😦 However, I want to do a quick catch up post with mostly pictures to give a little insight into what we have been doing since my last post.

Mike’s 25th Birthday lunch at the Arnold’s! 
My student researcher presented our work at a
student symposium here on campus. I am so proud of her!
Crawfish boil at the Picard’s.
Graduation Day!!! What a special day for Mike and I!
His hard work and dedication finally paid off!
There he is receiving his diploma and shaking hands with the university president!
My Master boyfriend!! So proud of him and we were both so happy that day!

We have some fun things coming up. We are headed to PTC to see Mike’s brother Danny graduate from High school soon and to spend time with the family. I plan to go and visit the HGTV Green Home while I am there as well(this is right up my alley) and I cannot wait! My fingers are still crossed about the future. Waiting is so very hard and straining on your mind though. I have to figure out a good way to de-stress and I may have a solution to my stress in my next post 🙂

Stay southern,

Easter 2012

Flower arrangements with candy and peeps!

For Easter we traveled to Peachtree City to spend the weekend with the Arnold’s. We had a great time eating delicious food and decorating for the party prior to the Andrew’s ladies coming over! The decorations this year were top notch as we got very creative and made flower arrangements with tulips and candy! The Egg game and appetizer contest were fun as they always are! We ended the trip with a delicious brunch in the courtyard!

Easter brunch!

The next couple of weeks are going to be intense! Mike has a very exciting/stressful week this week then next weekend is Super Bulldog Weekend/Cotton District Arts Festival which we are very excited about!! Keep your fingers crossed for us 😉 Right now I am listening to John Mayer(of course because he is my favorite)! He has not put out any new music in a couple of years but he is releasing a new record next month and I am super excited! The first single released is called Shadow Days and it has some truly relatable lyrics. I hope our shadow days are  almost over and we can have the new start we have been longing for!

Stay southern,

Tuscaloosa Airshow


This past weekend Mike and I headed to Tuscaloosa for an airshow. I have heard Mike talk about seeing The Blue Angels countless times so when I heard on the radio that they were coming there was no way I was going to let him miss them being so close. We awoke early and had a delicious breakfast at City Bagel and were on our way. Tuscaloosa is about an hour away and we arrived early getting a great parking place(we heard that it was a nightmare before so we planned ahead) We walked around the static display area seeing some pretty awesome planes/jets and even some pretty impressive Star Wars characters who’s costumes were pretty spot on according to Mike. We later made it over to the runway seating area and watched some of the aerobatic performances along with paratroopers and even a wingwalker. The final performance of the were the Navy Blue Angels and they lived up to all the hype. I am still amazed at the intelligence, talent and pure bravery it takes to fly these beautiful machines. It was truly a sight to be seen and I hope we go again soon! Mike seemed to have a wonderful time and that’s the only thing that mattered to me! We ended the day at Huck’s Place in Columbus for a delicious dinner! Even though we ended up pretty sunburned we had a great time!

Budweiser Clydesdales

This weekend we are headed to Peachtree City for Easter and the Egg Game!! Lots of pics to follow hopefully!

Stay southern,