Wednesday, April 29, 2015

I DID IT!!

DENVER, CO 
$380 of $380
Raised by 6 people in 29 days 
Donate Now

I want to give a HUGE THANK YOU to my family and my dear friend Rebecca who helped me reach my goal to sponsor one of the Peru rescued circus lions!!! These lions are en-route to The Wild Animal Sanctuary here in Colorado for medical care and to finally live a life full of love and freedom!

I will keep everyone updated on the progress of the Lions and my adoption!! xoxox
In case you missed my earlier posts about the Peru Lions here is a little bit about this amazing rescue.....

For $360 I could help by adopting a lion and assisting in the cost of their care! Best of all eventually I will be able to visit the Wild Animal Sanctuary here outside of Denver and see first hand the new lives of these former Circus animals! I am requesting $380 to cover the cost of the fees of this website.... and there is really nothing I need for my Birthday and when I watched the videos below my heart ached and I know I HAVE to do something! This is all I want this year..... to make a donation in my name!
Here is the sanctuary and below is the story that touched me.......
http://www.wildanimalsanctuary.org

For many months in late 2014 and early 2015, The Wild Animal Sanctuary has been building an enormous array of large acreage natural habitats for more than 33 African Lions to live in once they are rescued from Circuses in Peru and airlifted to Colorado.
The Sanctuary was at the helm of providing a home for 25 African Lions rescued from similar circumstances in Bolivia in 2011, and set a World record by working with a British Animal Welfare Agency to save the dozens of cast-off circus Lions.
http://www.perulions.org/#!thelions/cfvg


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

34!


Toady I am 34 years young..... although I must admit this is the first year it that doesn't sound so young. I woke up with my cat Bella giving me Birthday Purrs and snuggles and Matt got me donuts..... cats and donuts are the way to my heart! haha!
I was thinking what are a few things I want to do and accomplish this year??

* Have a baby
* Buy a home here in Denver and truly get settled
* Help Matt grow our business
* Stress less and enjoy more
* Connect with my friends better
* Try new ways to keep my migraines at bay

Well, I could go on and on but those are the highlights and that will keep me plenty busy! Now what am I off to do on this Birthday of mine..... Laundry! ha!



Monday, April 27, 2015

Monday Movie Madness!

I have 2 fun movies to talk to you about today, both are movies I was REALLY excited to see!!

The first is Age of Adaline, Matt and I saw this Saturday night and we really enjoyed it! I will say that is was a tad slow at times or at least Matt thought so but this isn't an action this movie is a story. This is the story of Adaline, a girl who stops aging and how ironically that also stops her from living life. I will say that both Matt and I were transfixed the entire movie by how absolutely stunning Blake Lively is.... I mean really, she is pure perfection in this movie. WOW! I do recommend this movie, maybe not to take your husband to but my fellow ladies will fall in love with the story as much as I did!



The second movie Matt and I saw last weekend... I was looking forward to this movie so much, The Woman in Gold. I have read several novels with the same story line.... Art Restitution. But this movie was a true story and for someone like Matt who didn't realize how the Nazi's stole valuables including art it was really eye opening. I loved this movie and the crowd we watched with this clapped several times during the movie and cheered at the end.... and that perfectly describes how I feel about it too! If this is playing in a theater near you... GO see it!




Friday, April 24, 2015

The Good Girl

"I've been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don't know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she's scared. But I will." 
Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, at first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life. 
Colin's job was to abduct Mia as part of a wild extortion plot and deliver her to his employers. But the plan takes an unexpected turn when Colin suddenly decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota, evading the police and his deadly superiors. Mia's mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them, but no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family's world to shatter. 
I found this book at Target and I am surprised I have never heard of it before and even more surprised when I was talking to some friends about it last week and they had already read it or were reading it now...... guess this has a bit of a secret cult following! But I am here to out the secret..... the secret that this book is GREAT! This was a quick read that I was immensely into! Each night I didn't want to stop reading because I thought I had it all figured out, or I just read something shocking or I had to know more..... either way I flew thru this book! If your looking for a fun Spring read then this is the book for you! Loved it!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

1 More Week......


Hi Guys!! For $360 I could help by adopting a lion and assisting in the cost of their care! Best of all eventually I will be able to visit the Wild Animal Sanctuary here outside of Denver and see first hand the new lives of these former Circus animals! I am requesting $380 to cover the cost of the fees of this website.... and there is really nothing I need for my Birthday and when I watched the videos below my heart ached and I know I HAVE to do something! This is all I want this year..... to make a donation in my name!
Here is the sanctuary.....
http://www.wildanimalsanctuary.org

Here is a picture of the Lions getting ready for their BIG travel to Colorado...........

My Birthday is NEXT Tuesday and I am still a little short of my goal to "adopt" a lion and you can learn more and donate by clicking on this link...

http://www.gofundme.com/Nicoleis34

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Son of the Congo

So we all know my love for the Okc Thunder and I know what all Oklahomans know.....that our guys are special! Our Okc Thunder has some of the most genuine players in the league and Son of the Congo just highlighted that times a MILLION!
This documentary about Serge Ibaka ripped my heart out.....
It made me sad for Serge as it showed how when he goes home to the Congo all everyone wants from him is money. People literally follow him around yelling at him to give them money. You see how that weighs on him and not in how you would expect it to. He wants to help everyone but he can't and you can see how that weighs on his heart. While in the Congo he helps fit people with hearing aides and watching him be apart of what for most is the first time they ever hear ...... it's strong. Powerful.
Also Serge donates $500,000 of supplies to an orphanage that he visits in the Congo and the emotion he displays is what we all feel or should feel when we see how awful it is for those children. It's heartbreaking.


One of my favorite quotes is when Serge is referring to the Playoffs last year when he came back to play even with a calf injury and he says "Sleeping on the street, having no food, being alone in the Congo is hard.... sacrificing for my teammates in the NBA Playoffs.... no thats not hard". 

You just need to watch this documentary for yourself and you will be touched, I promise. I could go on and on about how much I loved it and how much it touched me but you need to watch it for yourself.
All I could think about while watching this is... what am I doing? I wish my life could matter or make a difference in someone else's life. Food for thought.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Gifts for Mom!

Is it just me or does Mothers Day seem to be early this year? Or maybe I have just been in a hole and realized it has snuck up on me!!! Either way it's coming up.... May 10th to be exact!!! I actually already have both my Mothers covered (as of this weekend) but now I want to help you!!! I have picked out things for the Mom who wants to relax (Massage Envy gift Cards), the Culinary-loving Mom, the fashion-loving Mom and the Mom who would love to curl up with a great book!!! 

Pass this on to the full grown kid in your life of the Man who needs a little help!!! Enjoy!!!!!

Mothers Day 2015




Thursday, April 16, 2015

1 Year Annv!

You guys..... I cannot wrap my head around it..... ONE year ago today I officially moved to Denver! This week last year Mom and I made our 6 state journey with our co-pilot Bella from Columbus to Denver!!! One year ago today I pulled up to my Townhouse to see it for the first time, haha!
 1 Year ago I survived the move...... I do miss my home in Columbus, I always will.... I just loved it!
I am not sure if times flies or if it seems like I have been living in Denver for years already.... it's weird.  Happy 1 Year Anniversary to me!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Movie Madness

Today I have some movies to review for you all today and boy are they ever at opposite ends of the "like" spectrum! And for your reading pleasure I have ranked these WORST to BEST! hehe!

Foxcatcher...... AKA the movie with no words but tons of fake noses. 
To say I hated this movie is putting it mildly. I actually had to google to learn about the gentlemen Channing Tatum played because I thought he was learning impaired.... and he isn't FYI in real life but that is how Channing made him seem. Steve Carroll wore his fake nose with pride and had maybe 1 page of dialogue to memorize because most of the movie he just stood there and looked creepy. I get that the true story is sad, weird and might be interesting to those who like wrestling but I thought this was the worst movie ever. Matt hated it too, I mean in the middle of it we just laughed our heads off because we hated it so much, it was like a joke. You couldn't force me to watch this again. Even the real life guy who Channing Tatum played has said he hated this movie so much..... so there you have it. YUCK
 SO I LOVE me some Jessica Chastain and this movie looked like an indie flick with guts so Matt and I have wanted to see this for some time. And we finally did......... it was NOT good. Here is what we learned during this movie....
Set in 80s, they are rich, people are after them, why who knows, he wants to buy a property, he is being indicted, why who knows, they fight people, he borrows money, he never goes to jail, nothing happens, he buys property, they hold hands, movie ends.
That is literally all that happened. There is a reason this never made it to very many theaters. Bleh.
 Matt and I love us a good action movie and we have seen all the Fast movies in the past so we were excited to see this movie!! This movie is exactly what you would expect.... not based in any sort of reality but tons of FUN! I love everyone in this, the locations are exotic and they did Paul Walker right...... and we may or may not have shed a tear or two! If you want a fun escape from reality go see this it! It's worth it!!!!!!
The winner of all these movies is The Longest Ride and I am not a HUGE romance fan but I LOVED this movie and everyone I talk to loves it as well! The previews on TV do not do this justice it isn't just about bull riding and how sexy Scott Eastwood is and ya, he is something special! But 1/2 this movie is set in the 40s with a separate love story and this movie is filled with heart, art and family. I really really loved this movie.... I promise this one will surprise you... GO see it!



Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dirt to Turf!

So when we rented this Townhouse online sight unseen we never saw a picture of the "baby backyard" and much to our surprise is was a dirt pile. It sucked and for the last year we dealt with it but since we are staying in our rental longer than originally planned I just couldn't go another Summer with the gross dirt pile. 
 But since we will be hopefully moving out at the end of the year we don't want to put much money into this, such a conundrum. Most of our neighbors have turf since the yard really isn't a yard at all. So for my early Birthday present Matt and I watched a tutorial online and set out to DIY our own turf yard!
 This took Matt about 6+ hours and we got everything from Home Depot and since we already just started out with a dirt patch Step 1 was already done for us!
 The yard isn't perfectly level or professionally installed but the end result is still like night and day from what we had before! And it is so easy to clean up after the dogs!

 I also wanted to freshen up the patio so thanks to Target and Home Goods I created a Shabby chic patio for us to enjoy all the beautiful Denver days ahead!
 Now, keeping the boys from peeing on the new rug is quite a challenge for my rowdy boys so so far so good! In about a month I will plant some flowers and herbs which will be nice!

 So it's amazing what a great job Matt did and how I was able to pull together a cute patio on a nonexistent budget..... this way all our coming up house guests can have a nice place to eat dinner or enjoy a cup of coffee!!!


Monday, April 13, 2015

Hi.

Hi Guys..... I am back and I didn't mean to be gone for the last week but my body had other ideas. Here is what I have been dealing with.....
So 2 weeks ago at the request of my new neurologist here in Denver I got a new brain MRI (my last one was 8 years ago) which was so hard for me. I get claustrophobia real bad and being in the "head cage" inside this tomb with an IV in was the pits for me but I did it! Actually when it was over I felt so proud of myself. Then that Friday I got the results which came back as normal which I expected. That same day I got Migraine Trigger Point injections in my HEAD.... it was very unpleasant to say the least and the shots were suppose to numb the nerves in my head which should have drastically reduced my % of migraines..... BUT......... that isn't how my life works and last week was the worst week long migraine I have had in about a year. I didn't get out of bed for 3 days and no amount of migraine meds seemed to work. When you are so sick, stuck in bed, watching your life pass by it really really gets me down. I had a real rough week physically and mentally and I will save you the gory details.
You know, at least I can say I have tried everything and honestly I was born with this, this is my bad luck of the draw as it is for my Mom as well. Dealing with a chronic illness is so awful and it affects everyone in the family.
When this cycle finally broke and I was able to feel some relief this weekend it is like the clouds opened and God shone a light on me..... when I feel good it is unbelievable to me, like I can't believe it is happening .... I only wish everyday was like that.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tasty Tuesday!

Last weekend for our usual Date Night In I made a delish meal that both Matt and I LOVED! I got the recipe from Cooking Light Magazine and I just tweaked it a bit and it turned out perfect! This is the perfect meal to break in your patio and grill for Spring......

Italian Meatball Burgers!

I used kaiser burger buns I got in the bakery and right before I served everything up I toasted them in the oven under the broiler for a few minutes!
 I wanted to add caramelized onions to our burger toppings and they hit the spot! Here is how to make them......
Quick Caramelized Onions!
1 large yellow onion cut into strips
2 Tablespoons EVOO
Salt & Pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
* Place all ingredients in pan over low heat and slowly cook/caramelize for about 30 minutes! The key is low heat or they will just brown then burn!
 Here is what you need for the Italian Meatball Patties and it makes 4:

8 ounces sweet turkey Italian sausage
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 pound ground sirloin 
1 Can Marinara or Pizza Sauce: Use 2 Tablespoons of this in mixture set rest aside!
** Mix all ingredients and form into 4 patties to be grilled!
*** Right before Matt took them off the grill we placed slices of Provolone cheese on each one!
 Build Your Burger!
* Patties with Cheese
* Then heat the rest of your Marinara/Pizza sauce and top each burger with a large spoonful!
* Next comes your caramelized onions
* Lastly, place a few large basil leaves on top and then top it off with your bun!
 I served ours with a caesar salad and some red wine, it was so yummy! And of course I couldn't serve just any dessert but I needed an Italian dessert so I made a homemade cheesecake that day!
So friends.... Make this today!!! You'll thank me!

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