Saturday, September 28, 2013

Sukkot festivities


Hello everyone

Long time I know, but I choose to overlook that right now. haha.

We just finished out fall high holy days and it's been crazy and fun. Sukkot, or the feast of tabernacles, is by far the most joyous event. Yom T'Ruah is about repentence, Yom Kippur about atonement for sins, and Sukkot is the party: God hanging out with His kids! It's a time to remember how He took care of Israel in the wilderness for 40 years (post Exodus) and how He was right there with them. It's a time to reflect on what we are thankful for in life and how God has blessed us and will keep on sustaining us.

Our congregation had a week long camping event at a nearby lake and we had activities every night. We got to play music there a lot and dance and be crazy. It was so much fun. Even though it was difficult getting off work late and then going straight to the campground to play for hours, God really still showed us a good time and gave us so much joy and peace. It was the best Sukkot we've had so far. We watched the people dance and sing and just feel lighter. It's not that the cares of the world just go away during that time, but it's like God draws a curtain around us for a little bit and says, "We'll worry about it later...just rest." And rest we did. Here's a look into the week long party!

Corporate Shabbat Dinner
The stage
Don't be fooled, these people know how to party.
Beer and music...haha.
campers.
Getting ready to play!
Toby's guitar

The kids getting ready to sing!

We still hold hands like we're dating...and I like it.
Right before we started singing.
Favorite fruit for a favorite holiday!
Our "apartment sukkah".
Sad to see Sukkot go, but excited for what's coming up...our 3rd anniversary! Where has time gone??

See you cats on flip-flop later (School of Rock)!

Brooke

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Apples and Honey and Shofars, oh my!

Hello everyone!

Long time, no blog! I miss doing this and I apologize for the (inevitable) hiatus that comes with summer, school and work.

It's my favorite time of year, the high holy days! Last night Yom T'ruah began and continued into today. It's a time of remembering: remembering good times, God, provision and all that we've been blessed with. It's also a time of making things right with God and with each other. The biblical new year actually begins at Passover, contrary to what the Jewish community celebrates, but it is definitely a time of spiritual renewal and new beginnings. So, in light of the latter definition, happy new year and shana tova!


Us prepping for Yom T'ruah and getting liturgy together.


Toby pickin the strings.

Honeycake I made! (Recipe coming)

Chag Sameach (Happy Holiday)!
Have a great day!

~B~

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Literary Dinner: Robber Steak

"There are many odd things to put down, and, lest who reads them may fancy that I dined too well before I left Bistritz, let me put down my dinner exactly. I dined on what they called "robber steak" -- bits of bacon, onion, and beef, seasoned with red pepper, and strung on sticks and roasted over the fire..."
- Jonathan Harker in Bram Stoker's Dracula

As some of you may know, I really love the book Dracula. In fact, my senior capstone project is based on Mina Harker from the novel, so there ya go. Anyhow, Toby also loves the book and seemed to have a keen interest in the meals that Jonathan Harker ate in it. You may not remember, but on our 2nd anniversary he made Paprika Hendl which is featured in the first part of the novel. Earlier this week, he decided to make another dish featured in the book called Robber Steak. It's basically a kebab, but Hungarian Paprika makes a lovely Eastern European treat.

If you look up the recipe (which I just did) you will see that we took great liberties with it. This is in part because we aren't huge red meat-eaters and in part because we were on a tight budget...and also because we don't eat ham and turkey bacon is just NOT thick enough. However, our intentions were good and that counts for something. Right?

We are not super formal so this recipe is SUPER up for interpretation, haha. But, for the sake of having SOMETHING written down, here's what we did:

Ingredients:
1 pound(ish) of chicken, cubed
About half a pint of whole portobello mushrooms, halved (in lieu of bacon)
2 bell peppers, sliced thick
1 onion, sliced thick
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
Dash of Hungarian Paprika
Kebab Skewers (is that how you spell it?)

The ingredients minus spices. Do excuse our crowded counter.

Directions:
Pierce all of the ingredients one by one in whatever fashion you please on the stick (see photo below). You can use whatever method of grilling you like, but we used our Foreman grill...well it's not actually a Foreman grill but, close. Anyhow, once all of the ingredients are on the stick, place them in the grill and cook them, turning every few minutes to even out cooking. Every grill is different, and we are still getting used to ours. It took us about 15-20 on medium heat and it was great.






And there you have it! So easy and quite filling. Very healthy too, which is definitely wonderful. We quite enjoy doing these literary dinners and we have more up our sleeves to share. Can't wait to cook (and eat) them!

Have a good day,

~ B ~

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Our Weekend in the Mountains


Hello everyone,

A couple of weeks ago Toby and I decided "it's time for a break from being busy." Breaks don't come all too often during the academic year so we lept at the opportunity to go off on an impromptu trip to the mountains. At this particular time, we were soooooo ready to take a rest so we tried to book our trip at a friend's house in North Georgia.

But it was already booked.

I'm generally a person who keeps her cool most times, but not this time. I kind of lost it in a beautifully emotional and hysterical mess (by myself, of course). I was so ready for a break so this news was like a slice to my soul. It sounds dramatic but I know I'm not the only one who has made a mountain out of a molehill.

But this post is entitled "Our Weekend in the Mountains" so I'm sure you know where this is going.

After a week of brooding and listening to my sweet husband list in-town alternatives to what we could do, I had kind of given up and resigned myself to the fact that we would just have to make do staying home. And then Toby got a phone call. The people that were going to be at the house had to cancel so the house was back open for us. Needless to say, I kind of felt like an idiot for being so upset and not just trusting that God would bring good out of it. However, I now looked at the trip as a gift because it technically wasn't supposed to have happened. It made me thankful...even for the hard things...because it was out of a hard thing that this little happy thing came about. Seriously, I don't think I'll ever forget it.



It was beautiful and peaceful and I don't think I have ever felt so relaxed. Toby and I stayed in our pajamas pretty much the whole time. I think we changed clothes like one time. Yeah I know, it's gross. But I DON'T CARE. I actually wrote a paper while I was there. No internet = no distractions. Consequently, it was one of the highest grades I've made on a paper. All in all, God totally blessed this trip and it felt like a sweet gift from him. As soon as we walked in we saw a painting that said "I will give you rest" from Matthew 11:28. We knew that we really would be given rest. We can't wait to go back!

Sweet little den
And a sweet little kitchen
Gorgeous view of the forest

and I think Harry Potter might have been living in the hallway..
...in the cupboard under the stairs.
This is the tiny TV that we watched movies on. It was so fun! And yes,
this is where we watched the rest of Downton Abbey season 3.
breakfast
Yummy wine from New Zealand and a rainy Saturday.
Paper writing.
And more paper writing. In the outfit I never changed out of.
Bringing in Shabbat.
I will miss this spot.
We left refreshed and already ready to go back!

Good times.

~B~

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Currently




Currently drinking: Coffee

Currently doing: a few research papers that I'm oddly excited about.

Currently eating: a piece of cheese (no judgment, please)

Currently reading: The Castle in the Forest by Norman Mailer and The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (rereading, rather). Both are school related but Gaiman's book is now part of my heart.

Currently awaiting: our trip to the mountains that we will be taking...TONIGHT! I am thrilled!

Currently watching: Downton Abbey, Season 3. DO. NOT. SAY. ANYTHING. ABOUT. IT.

Currently wearing: my blessed, blessed pajamas.

Excerpt from Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book.


~B~

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Literature love: a new series

...And by new series I mean something that I may not continue but would still like to have a go at it.

I guess that's what all "new series" are at first conception anyway, right?

Well, as many of you know, I am a fanatic over literature and all things books...especially all things 19th century, so I thought it would only be fitting that I reccommend some of the things I've been reading lately..which is a lot of things! The first list of books are all within the Victorian/Romantic era so for those of you who are fed up with modernity, this one's for you!

Literature Love: Victorian Era


1. Bram Stoker's Dracula. This novel is truly an interesting and creepy read. NONE of the films do it justice or interpret it correctly. If you've never read it, you should. And for those of you concerned with the dark or evil represented it, spoiler alert, good wins and it's satisfying.



2. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Don't let the movies fool you, this book is LEGIT. It is full of intrigue, danger, life, death and the struggle between faith and science.You will be surprised by how attached to the creature you get!


3. Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. By far one of my favorite books and love stories, this is all about a girl who goes through unimaginable things, falls in love, encounters danger, and follows what she knows is right through it all. Ladies, if imperfect but passionate dudes are your thing...than look no further. Rochester is where it's at!


4. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. You simply must read these. If you liked the movies or the show (as I have emphatically declared love for) then you will be pleasantly surprised by how the dialogue is taken almost completely from the books. They speak as we do! If you like this, then you must continue on with The Hound of the Baskervilles, A Case in Scarlet, and more!


5. Thomas Peckett Prest's The String of Pearls. This story, which was originally a penny dreadful that came out in installments, is the original (or mostly original) story of Sweeney Todd. Don't expect the musical or film, it's its own bird, but it is quite worth the read!


Do you have Victorian era novels you love? What are they? And if you read any of these, let me know how you liked them!

Have a good one,

~B~










































Friday, March 15, 2013

Life lately via Instagram

Hello dearies,

(anybody catch the Once Upon a Time Reference??) Hope everyone is doing well!
A lot of fun things have transpired in the last few months and instagram always aids me in showing you. These go back to January (further proof that my blogging has suuuuucked as of late) but hey, living life is better than writing it, right? Be in the moment...that's my advice.

So here is our life through instagram as of late!


Januray 2013: we got a Keurig! I am the only one in our home that drinks coffee so it made no sense to make a pot and then have most of it go to waste. SO we gathered up our gift cards and spent a whopping $30 on this little beauty. Pretty cool, huh?
February: I made hot chocolate from scratch. This is not particularly monumental as this was a very rough trial making it, but my favorite movie HAPPENS to be Chocolat, so I felt I owed it to the film to give it a go.
In December (I knoooow, its late) we saw The Hobbit and I died. A-MAZING.
February: I co-hosted my first (and probably only) baby shower for my dear darling friend, Lindsey! She now has a bouncing baby born on March 10 :)
We recently discovered that we can have the comforts (besides warmth) or a fireplace without the hassle of cleaning one. If you have Netflix, search for Fireplace For Your Home. We now go to sleep to it.
Spring has sprung! And oh it feels good. The South always gets sun early.
Sister Sarah (Toby's sis) came to town in February. We had a good time watching SNL, The Office, Community and laughing until the wee hours of the night. Miss her already.
In my Literature for the Adolescent class we ready the new Young Adult novel Meant To Be (which is so cute and fun to read). Luckily, the author of said novel, Lauren Morrill, lives in Macon so we got to meet her.. Lovely lady and super inspiring.
Of course I had adventures with Tobes.
With all the craziness...we still found some time to relaaaaaax.
Finally got a new tea kettle. Love it. And also cleaned my kitchen,
 

That's all she wrote.

~B~
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