Queen Penny Lane

posted on: Thursday, December 18, 2014


This is the state of affairs at our house. Penny is the queen, I have just realized. It’s cold in this house, so I moved the space heater to warm my feet as I worked on the couch and not five minutes later does Penny Lane return to her spot. She sits on her bed, begrudgingly, and whines as she realizes that I actually don’t notice that she is desperately cold and in need of the space heater currently warming my digits and not her whole entire body.

“Seriously, Penny?”, I ask. Don’t worry, she doesn’t answer back nor do I expect her to. This is just how it goes when you spend way too much time with animals, I think. Penny Lane does not show emotion and so I believe she said, with those deep brown eyes of hers that see straight into your soul, “Yes”. It was probably sassier than that, I’m sure, but who really knows these things?


And so, Penny wins. Penny alllllways wins. I’m sorry, did I say “wins”? I meant whines. That’s how she wins, though, it’s her secret weapon. She hardly barks, but she’s a master at the art of whining and pacing around at the same time when she wants something. Usually to go out when it’s way too cold outside, so she can sniff the same planter for way too long and question the meaning of life. We, her humans, are not so entertained by this.

Anyway, so that’s Penny Lane. Penny Lane is the queen, this house is her throne and we are merely her servants. Her cold-footed servants.

Let’s face it…

posted on: Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Flourless Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

“Everything in moderation, including moderation.”- Oscar Wilde

The amount of sugar I am consuming this month is a bit out of control. Whoops. As I see it, December is just NOT a time for moderation. Not at all. The reason is obvious. Christmas, you guys! Christmas. If for no other reason, it is the holiday season. My meals have all been generally healthy(hooray), but those sa-weeeeeets, you guys. My sweet tooth is a raging monster that is pulling a Miley and can’t be tamed. I did so well this summer but after a week in Italy, Thanksgiving the following week, and now, well, the entire month of December, I’m just throwing in the towel on limiting my intake of sugar, k? At this point, I’m already planning on homemade cinnamon buns for Christmas morning and it’s going to be glorious and I don’t feel an ounce of guilt about it.

In all fairness, I did try to tame it by making healthy sweet treats, like Andrea’s no-bake lemon macaroons. I made them, ate one, and then proceeded to bake Jen’s flourless peanut butter chocolate chip cookies immediately after and WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? Oh well, they are seriously good and it’s Christmas. Have I mentioned that already?

The Girl and The Good

But look! Mini-muffins!

This is late, but…

posted on: Monday, December 15, 2014

So, I missed the “thankful blogger” train, didn’t I? Yes, yes I did. By two weeks, I did.

Well, I am thankful for so much this year. If you’ve been reading the last few months, you have a pretty good idea of what I’m thankful for. My faith, the health of my family, the wine business, getting to travel a little more this year than we ever have. More good than bad, more dreams coming true and hints of other dreams starting to be realized and that is the greatest. In the five years of being married, Adam and I  have been through some trying circumstances and this year, while still having some rocky times, was probably the best for us so far.

It was a good year, not because it was easy, but because the hard times allowed for God to move more. We’re growing stronger in our faith and in our relationship. I think when the really, really hard times come down the road, we’ll be more prepared for them. You know, what doesn’t kill you.(..) I suppose I am very thankful for that as well, though an easy year would be nice, you know. I’m looking at you, 2015. (It must be noted that I like to put unrealistic expectations on things such as years and birthdays. I am aware of this.)

P.S. If I haven’t said it a million times before, it must be said that I am incredibly thankful for this guy…


…who has met and exceeded so many of my unrealistic expectations I had for a husband since 2009 and that’s all I really have to say about all that.

Va Bene (It’s Good)

posted on: Monday, November 24, 2014

The Girl and The Good in Salerno, Italy

We have just returned from Italy. The last few weeks were all spent working and preparing for our trip, so I’m finally back to writing, alive and well. It was a much-needed blog break, as we had so much to do to make sure this trip was a success and, thankfully, it was.

To be honest about it, words just can’t describe how amazing this past week was. It was far too short for the amount of work we had to do and most days found us exhausted as we worked to fit in as much as we could to help get this business* off the ground. From the outside, it may look like we had a vacation, because social media is just funny that way. I promise you, we worked our tails off.

We spent twelve hour days navigating Italy, working through language barriers, getting lost, and then found, and overwhelmed, but it was pretty magical just the same. Thankfully, Adam’s conversational Italian is still pretty much intact, so getting through the language barriers was much easier and I am currently research language classes to take. We are following big dreams and that’s not always easy, but it often leads to these beautiful adventures that are far out of our comfort zone. The best stuff happens there.

Thankful doesn’t even begin to describe how we’re feeling. My heart is both happier and worse for wear as I was reminded just how deeply I love that country, the city of Salerno, and the people of Italy. Neither of us had been back in six years and we needed this trip to realize what we’re working for. Leaving yesterday wasn’t the easiest, but, It’s also motivating beyond belief as I hope to have many more exhausting weeks in Italy through this business. I have more hope than ever that pursuing this business is exactly what are supposed to be doing. That’s the only to describe how this whole week felt, like everything was perfectly aligned and for that moment, we could see what it is we were working for and it felt like we were exactly where God wanted us to be.

The fact that Thanksgiving is this week, that we get to see family soon, and that a Christmas tree will soon grace us with its presence makes the ache of leaving Italy not quite so…achy.


So with that I say, “Ci vediamo dopo, Italy!”


*This business is Two Bottles Wine Co. We will bring you Italian wine from small-batch, family-owned wineries in Italy. Because these amazing wines aren’t as well-known, you can get an incredible bottle of wine for an affordable price. We’ll also tell you the story of the wineries, many times from the winemakers themselves, the history (SO MUCH HISTORY) behind the vineyards and share the heart behind the wine you are drinking. There are so many great stories to share and we can’t wait to share them, and this amazing wine, with you. If you are a fan of wine, be sure to visit the website and sign up for the newsletter as we get prepped to launch the business next year!