Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thanksgiving Edition: Thinking Out Loud #64

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you're celebrating with friends and/or family and enjoying a delicious meal. Sadly I won't be having any turkey this year or celebrating with family since I'm halfway across the country working. There's no holidays in news so I'm working today and Christmas Eve and Christmas. I'm a little sad to be working Christmas since it's my favorite holiday, but I wouldn't be able to go home anyway so I'd rather be working. Anyway grab a plate of Thanksgiving fixings and let's jump into this weeks thinking out loud.

1. There's been an initiative in Nebraska to reduce distracted driving so the state has been posting funny signs to remind drivers to keep their eyes on the road. It's slightly confusing to me as I am taking my eyes off the road to read the sign, nonetheless I really don't understand the notion of being a good potato. The newsroom was having a debate over what the sign meant. I also learned that potatoes have eyes, but I have no clue if that's what the sign meant🤔

2. THIS CANDLE SMELLS AMAZING! I swear I do more than just smell candles at Target, I do most of my grocery shopping there, but it's very easy to become distracted in that store. Target is giving Bath and Body Works a run for their money with some of their scents. Plus, Chip and JoAnna Gains line at Target, their candles smell amazing😍

3. Speaking of Target they had these massive stuffed animals in the middle of the aisles. I know it's getting close to Christmas, but seriously where would you store these things? They are really cute and I would have loved a massive stuffed animal as a child, but now I'm a boring adult and think about where the heck one would have room for such a massive toy. I also just really tired of the commercialism of Christmas, but that's a story for another day.

4. Nothing like a new haircut to make you feel good💇 I decided I needed a change so I found a hair stylist and chopped of six inches. It's the shortest I've had it in years but it feels good to have a change. Plus I don't need as much shampoo and it doesn't take as long to dry which is always a plus in my world. The hair stylist spent over half an hour thinning out my hair because it's so thick and wavy naturally. When I was done my head felt so much lighter, it was amazing.

5. Last week was a rough week. Work was rough, I was missing my dog, and the realization that I was going to be alone for the holidays kind of sunk in. I was just feeling off. This year I've worked on not stuffing my emotions and being numb and instead allowing myself to acknowledge my feelings. It's a work in progress, but I was down in the dumps when friends showed up with froyo. I swear people in Nebraska are the nicest. It made my day and it made me feel so much better after talking it out with them. All of us are working Christmas so we decided to have a mini celebration once we're off for the day. It won't be the same as being at home, but it beats being alone during the holidays.

6. My boyfriend didn't appreciate this sign nearly as much as I did, but it's such a true statement. I was picking up some thread and a needle to fix a hole in a pair of pants when I found it. Of course I took a picture and sent it to him. Glitter makes everything better👌

7. I really love this quote. I think it's so beautiful and so well said. You can do absolutly anything you put your mind to. It might take a lot of hard work and years before you can accomplish whatever goal you have, but you can do it. Nothing in life that's worth having is easy. Don't give up. Ever.

Have a very happy Thanksgiving!! Enjoy the holiday and have a fantastic weekend!

How are you celebrating Thanksgiving?
Do you go out shopping on Black Friday?

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Cooking, Candles, & Taylor Swift: Thinking Out Loud #63

Happy Thursday! Technically it's only my weekend, but I am more than happy to have two days off. This past week is one I wouldn't mind forgetting. As much as I love my job not everyday is peaches and rainbows, but it will pass and I get some much needed down time. Anyway, let's jump into this weeks thinking out loud.

1. Yesterday I got to attend a student culinary competition and I had my mind blown. The students were all in high school and I was blown away by some of their creations. They were crafting some amazing decorations for desserts. This fruit sculpture was my favorite creation I saw today, but there was so many amazing pieces it was hard to pick just one favorite. Fingers crossed that next year I can be a taste tester😋

2. This dog will be the death of me. Every time I leave my apartment and she's at the fence and I can't come pet her she gives me the stink face. She's so stinking sweet and her sweet kisses and genuine excitement never fails to make my day. This week has been rough, but even just a few moments petting her after work have my day so much better. Dogs are beyond a doubt the best therapy🐶

3. I rarely watch TV, ironic I know because I'm news reporter, but my parents were into HGTV so I used to watch it sometimes with them. Well Chip and JoAnna Gains launched a line at Target and it's SO CUTE!! Their candles smell amazing and I'm going to pick up a few pieces from the line for Christmas presents. This candle was my favorite and it smelled so good. I definitely recommend checking out the line👌

4. Unless you've lived under a rock you probably know that Taylor Swift released a new album. I've been a fan since the beginning, but this album was definitely different from her previous ones. There's a note in the beginning album that just hit close to home. I've never understood why people constantly feel the need to dig into her personal life, let a gal live her life! Anyway my favorite songs off the album so far are New Year's Day, Call It What You Want, Delicate, and Getaway Car. 

5. These brownie cookies have been a hit in the newsroom. They're super easy to make and don't contain any crazy ingredients, so they're great to whip of the day of if needed. I've made a few batches this past week and have been asked for the recipe multiple times. I know I'll be making them again for the newsroom soon🍪

6. This quote has been stuck in my heart all week and wanted to share it. It's a quote that doesn't need any explanation💜

Have a terrific Thursday and have an amazing weekend!! 

Have you listened to Taylor Swift's new album, if so what are you thoughts/current favorite songs?
What are you looking forward to the most about the holidays?

Monday, November 13, 2017

Brownie Cookies

Happy Monday! This weekend was insane at work, but I enjoy being busy because it makes the day go by quicker and I feel more accomplished when I cover multiple events. 

Anyway, I was in need of a baking fix so I whipped up a batch of brownie cookies. The cookies were quickly devoured at work and everyone loved how they were, "like brownies in cookie form." Reporters have a way with words don't we😜 they're simple to make, only require a few basic ingredients and are a sure hit for any occasion!

Brownie Cookies
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 ounces semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Hershey's special dark cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
In a microwave safe bowl melt butter and three ounces of chocolate chips. Microwave for 30 seconds, stirring, and then microwaving for additional time until everything is melted.

Stir in sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, egg, and vanilla. 

Slowly add in flour, I mixed in 1/2 cup at a time. 

Finally, mix in chocolate chips.

Chill dough for 20-30 minutes.

While dough is cooling line a baking sheet with tin foil or spray with nonstick cook spray. 

After dough has chilled scoop dough in small amounts, roughly a tablespoon or two, onto baking sheet.

Bake at 350F degrees for 8-12 minutes. The cookies are done when the tops are no longer shiny. 

Allow cookies to cool completely before removing from baking sheet.

If you make them take a picture and tag me on instagram and use the hashtag #thesimplelife so I can see your creations!