Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Minneapolis apartment.

So Kley is working on a big project of transferring all of my family's home movies onto DVD's (from the ancient old chunker with the tapes they don't make anymore). I was watching myself as a baby in 1989 last night when my parents bought their first house, and I wished I could have seen a walk through of the house, so I could always remember how it used to look. (I lived there from 6 months until 15, so I obviously remember it, but it looked a lot different when my parents first moved in and had no money for furniture!) 

So, that made me want to post my own pictures! Here is what our first apartment looked like in Minneapolis, MN (technically New Brighton). This was our first apartment together in our first year of marriage, so this place holds a lot of special memories and a lot of firsts!


Front entryway (right outside kitchen) 

Dining "room" table (kind of thrown into the living room)

Living Room



Wall between living room and kitchen with our honeymoon pictures

We were fortunate to be able to move most of our stuff in two weeks before the wedding (which was a great idea), so we didn't have to move so much stuff right after getting back from our honeymoon, and right before I started my senior year. And thankfully we did go up early, because the apartment we lived in was not the actual apartment we were supposed to have. Our original apartment had a HUGE water stain in the bathroom ceiling and was actually dripping down water, which was a big problem! The landlords said they could fix it by the time we came back from the wedding, but we didn't feel comfortable moving stuff in then, and thankfully they had another one for rent. It turned out way better because this was a corner unit, so it was more private, a little bigger, and had new carpet. Thank you, Lord!

I loved this apartment. It suited our needs- it wasn't fancy by any means, but it felt fancy because it was the first place that was ALL OURS and we could do whatever we wanted!

I love the windows in this apartment, I miss them. I do not miss all the ants and the box "air conditioner" that was such a joke and made the two months of summer we lived there awfully hot. (Our current apartment has central air- a huge perk!) All in all, though, I have such happy memories of living there!

I'll share our current apartment pictures next time!

(P.S. These pictures were taken right after we moved in, so you'll notice a few frames without pictures in them yet and a few blank walls- we added more pictures later.)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday in the kitchen.

Today I spent a lot of time in the kitchen, and I loved it! For lunch I made fettuccine alfredo with steamed veggies on top. I forgot to take a picture, but that's okay because none of it was really homemade- noodles from a box, sauce from a can, and the frozen steamers bag of veggies. (The steamers frozen veggie bags are amazing, by the way, you should get them!)

Then I made chocolate chip banana muffins/bread, taken from this recipe: Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins.  It looks really yummy and smelled great baking. Just to let you know, the recipe made 24 muffins and this small loaf. This works perfectly, so we can have some this week, and I froze some for next weekend when we have friends coming to town. Yum!

Then, for tonight, I put in cheesy potato soup in the crock-pot, taken from this recipe: Cheesy Potato Soup. I did not follow the recipe exactly, but it's the same general idea. I put mine in the crock-pot, while hers was made on the stove, and I left out the onion and bacon (because I didn't have them), and substituted some leftover steamed veggies from lunch. Hopefully it turns out good! It made a whole pot full, so we will definitely have enough to freeze some and have leftovers in the fridge! (This picture isn't the best, sorry.)

Pumpkin Patch.

Saturday we (Kley, my sister Kayla, and I) headed to the pumpkin patch. My parents went to OC (Orange City, IA) to my other sister Karlie's volleyball game, so we were with Kayla for the day. I had bought a groupon to The Pumpkin Ranch in Winterset earlier, and yesterday was the perfect day to use it! (Also, it expired today, so we kind of had to.) It was a lot of fun!

It was a beautiful day and the sky was perfect!

Kley and Kayla.

Kley and I.

The biggest thing we did was the corn maze. It was sponsored by a local radio station, and the corn field was a maze of Romney and Obama's faces. Funny. There were 12 checkpoints to find, along with 6 checkpoints that weren't on the map, that were sort of like the game Clue to solve the puzzle of the "lost farmer." Kley was the map leader (thankfully, or we would have been so lost), and Kayla and I walked behind pretending we were in the Hunger Games, because the maze sort of reminded us of the clock from the second time (for you readers out there). Kayla was hilarious asking Haymitch to send her gifts. :) (I know the premise of the Hunger Games is not funny at all, but it was a very entertaining series!)

Here is the corn maze.

Then we took a ride to the pumpkin patch, where we got two "free" pumpkins, since I had bought the groupon. All in all, it was a super fun afternoon, although I wouldn't necessarily recommend The Pumpkin Ranch. It was good, but I would check out another one next time. We had to pay to get in, as well as pay extra to go in the corn maze, and I have heard from some of my preschool parents that there are some awesome other ones that don't require you to pay extra. It was a good time, though!

Last night Kayla had a birthday party that we took her to, so Kley and I watched a movie while she was there. We watched The Five Year Engagement. If you haven't watched it, don't waste your time. It stunk.

Have a great week!

Saturday, October 27, 2012


I have been trying to branch out my cooking, and try a few new recipes this fall. One of them is chili! This is a wonderful thing to make for a cold day, and it's nice that it makes a lot so you have leftovers. It's also nice to use the crock-pot, which is something I have been trying to use more. 

The first time I made chili, I used a friend's recipe. It worked out really well, although the recipe used a lot of garlic and onion, which is something I am not used to cooking with. It was really good, but with not being big garlic eaters, I wanted to tweak it a little.

The picture above is from the second time I made chili, and it turned out awesome. I am definitely adding chili to my repertoire, and will probably make it a lot this winter. I used the same recipe, but this time I used pork instead of beef (it's cheaper), and I used a whole green pepper instead of the onion and garlic.

Here's what's actually in it, if you're interested:
2 pounds ground pork (cook before you put in the crock pot)
Half can salsa (you can really put in however much you want- about a cup or two)
1 can chili beans
1 can light red kidney beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 smaller can (I think mine was 8 oz.) tomato sauce
Around 2 Tbsp. chili powder
1 whole green pepper chopped up
Shredded cheese on top
I also made a cheap box of Jiffy cornbread on the side.

I think the original recipe said to cook it 4-5 hours on high. The first time I made it, I cooked it for 4 hours, the second only 3. Both times were fine and it was done and hot. You should try it! It's delicious, and you have at least two meals worth for around $11!


Yesterday I felt really productive at work. I got a lot done, and I enjoyed doing it. On the drive home, I felt very blessed as I thought about it. I truly do love my job. I love that I can work with kids and teach them and love them and they love me. It's a wonderful feeling. I can't imagine not working with kids. It's so rewarding.

Since my room is low on kids right now (not for long- we have people wanting to come now!), it's provided me many opportunities to help others, since I have more time than usual, and I have been loving that. I have been able to get more involved in the Early Ed. department as a whole, instead of just my room.

For instance, recently I have been helping with our christmas program. This has given be an awesome excuse to listen to christmas music super early! (I also saw my first sighting of lights this week, which made me super happy! Not halloween lights, actual christmas lights.) I was able to make up the song lists, come up with actions, and sort of set the stage for the whole program! I feel honored to play such a big part, and I love doing it! We are also working on the decorations, and we are going to have the kids make a lot of them this year, so they are going to be really cute.

Also, we have a teacher who does praise and worship with each class once a week- it's the best and the kids love it. She was talking to me about how she's struggling to find good Christian worship books for children, so she asked me to write some! It's been super fun to write stories for my kids and create a mini book! I have made books about forgiveness, praise verses (mostly from Psalms), ways to show love to friends, fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), and the armor of God (from Ephesians 5).

I've been able to do little things around too, such as washing the cot sheets. I am so happy to have a peaceful work situation, especially after not having one for awhile- thank you God! I love the women I work with, and I am grateful for this time and for God providing me with small opportunities to serve at work. I love my job!

As much as I love my job, I am also so glad it's the weekend and today is Saturday! Here's to not working today! :)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Omaha, Church, and an ER visit.

Here's a little recap of our weekend.

Friday: After work we volunteered at church for the Valley outreach program. Our church is right next to the Valley football stadium, so they let people use the parking lot and hand out free coffee, popcorn, and pizza as sort of a casual evangelism opportunity. It was our small group's turn to volunteer. To be frank, I was grumpy and not in the mood to go. But, we went, from 5-10, and it wasn't too bad. Even though there wasn't a ton for us to do (manning the tattoo booth didn't go so well when there were only about 4 takers and it was so cold they wouldn't even stick), it was nice to talk with some other couples from our small group. It was freezing, though- definitely dressing warmer next time!

Saturday: Kley woke up feeling sick, but it was our shopping trip day to Omaha with Kley's family. We really didn't want to miss it, especially since we don't get to see his family too often, so we still went. Kley and his dad hung out and went to a movie, while all the girls went shopping. It was so so fun to spend time together and get some new fall clothes! Yay!

We got home at about 9:15, and I could tell that Kley was feeling awful with a sore throat. But, all the walk in clinics were closed for the night, and we didn't want to wait till the next afternoon for them to open again, especially since Kley was supposed to teach the lesson at church in the morning, and we were supposed to host small group Sunday night! We ended up going to the ER so he could get the medicine sooner and start feeling better. I was prepared to see craziness like on Grey's Anatomy or something, but we didn't see anything interesting and it was quite calm actually. (I supposed that's the best case- who ever wants the ER to be crazy?) He got the strep meds and is feeling much better.

Sunday: Thankfully, our co-leaders of our small group really stepped up and taught the lesson for Kley and hosted small group that night. We had a relaxing afternoon, which was nice after being so busy, and played Bingo at small group, which turned out to be awesome!

It was a good weekend, minus the strep throat. Hope yours was too!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The story of Kley and I: Chapter Eight- The Wedding!

I know it's been awhile, but I'm finally going to post some wedding pictures! In case you missed the other chapters of our story, you can read them here: The Story of Kley and I.

Our wedding day was the best day ever. Of course, everyone is biased about their own wedding day, and I'm just the same, but I think our day was the best day ever. There was great weather, we got great pictures, everyone we loved was there and we got to spend the whole day together, and of course we got to get married!

I absolutely love being married to Kley and it was the best decision! I am so happy and blessed to live and grow together in Christ.

Here are some great pictures! Enjoy!

Getting my hair done.

Kley reading my card/opening gift. (I got hom Fossil sunglasses and a watch, and I made him a picture scrapbook of the pictures of us.)

Me seeing my ring soldered together for the first time!

 Me getting the pearl necklace from my mom. My dad gave it to her on the day I was born, and they saved it for me for my wedding day! (I had no idea about this- it was a really special surprise!)

Me reading Kley's card/opening gift. (He gave me a Mrs. De Jong teaching bag and a Marriott gift card, saying the honeymoon doesn't have to end.)

This is one of my all-time favorite pictures ever- the first time seeing my dad. This was the first time I'd ever seen him cry.

Seeing Kley for the first time!

The wedding party!

This is another one of my favorites. :)

Rings on my bouquet.

 During the ceremony.

The kiss!

 This is my favorite wedding party picture.

Cutting the cake.


Our first dance to "Crazy Love" by Michael Buble.