Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Happy birthday, katie!!

Happy Birthday to my BFF, Katie!!!

Katie is my bestfriend from college. We met while playing soccer. She thought I didn't like her at first (like most people do), but about our 2nd semester of college we became super close.

Katie and I lived together our sophomore year. That was quite the interesting living arrangement, but we made it! :) The next 2-3 years we lived super close, but not together.
Unfortunately, Katie moved back home to St. Louis a few months ago. It has definitely been an adjustment, but luckily we get to see each other about once a month.
Another good thing about it being Katie's birthday is that means it is my birthday in 6 days!! Yay!!
Happy birthday, Katie! Love you!!

A very typical pic of us together.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I've been tagged.

I have been tagged in a little blogger picture game by LJKC at Superhero.

The rules:
open the 6th picture folder on your computer, open the 6th photo and blog it. Write something about it. Then tag 6 more people to do the same.

This is not the most exciting picture that I could have found on my computer, but it was the 6th folder and 6th pic.

It's me and my little girl Lucky-Anne. The title of the folder was 2nd semester senior year so this pic was taking in the spring of 2007. Lucky was probably just a little over a year in this pic. She is so stinkin' cute!! She has a little sweater on...she hates when I dress her up so I don't do it anymore.

And for my 6 people to tag:

1. Michelle at Random Ramblings.
2. Megan at So Now What?
3. Katie at A Tote's Life.
4. Heather at Heather Drive.
5. Jen at Meet The Robinsons.
6. Allie at Simply Allie.

Have fun with it! I look forward to seeing everyone's pictures.

Mardi Gras 2009

My trip to St. Louis was a lot of fun for Mardi Gras.

We (me, Abbey, Flip, and Megan) left KC about 5:30 on Friday. We made the 3.5 hour trip to Washington, MO with a couple of stops along the way for food and pee breaks. It was a very fun ride...rocking out to some good road trip music.

In the car on the way to STL...thanks to Abbey for driving! :)

We had a great time in Washtington at Katie's family's house. We laughed, played games, sat around the bon fire, got in the hot tub, and played Rock Band. Such a good night!!

We woke up early on Saturday to get ready and have an AWESOME breakfast cooked by Katie's mom (Mary O.). We left Washington at about 9:30 to head to St. Louis to get the party started.

Us before leaving for STL.
Top L-R: Steve, Alie, Katie, Abbey
Bottom L-R: Flip, me, Megan

It was freezing in St. Louis. It did not help that I was getting texts from my in-laws in New Orleans telling me about the 60 degree weather there.

We walked around, drank our Hurricanes, people watched (best part!!), and took pictures. It was a very good day, but it was too cold to stay longer than sun down. We left St. Louis and headed back to Washington. We fell asleep pretty early because it was such a long, cold day.

The trip back to Kansas City was quite a bit more tame. All in all, it was a very good weekend. I definitely want my next Mardi Gras experience to be in New Orleans.

Random float from the parade.

View from the random apartment that we used for the restroom.

Me and Abbey.

Random "friends" on the street.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

My first award!

I have received my first blogger award from Amy at Life in the Junction. It's a super cute award and such an honor to be recognized in the blogging world so quickly after starting my blog. :)

Here are the rules: “These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."

1. Marie-Etta at Adventures in Holy Matrimony.
2. Amanda at Amanda's Random Ramblings.
3. Molly at You're Talking Gibberish.
4. D at Pink Tales.
5. Angie at An Iowan in the Chi.
6. Renee at A Taste of Life.
7. Amy at Bride to Be.
8. Casey at You call it madness but we call it love.

Definitely check out these blogs...they are all awesome girls!! :)

Friday, February 20, 2009


Happy Friday!!

Yesterday was an absolute horrible day at work...15 hours of a horrible day. UGH! Needless to say, I am SUPER excited about a 4 day weekend.

I leave at about 5 to go to Washington, MO to stay with Katie and her fam before we head to St. Louis tomorrow morning for Mardi Gras. I am taking the trip with my girls Abbey, Flip, and Megan. It should be a GREAT time!

I will have a recap posts with pictures next week sometime. I am also getting my hair done this afternoon so I will have pics of that next week as well.

Have a great weekend!! Happy Mardi Gras!! :):)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Broccoli Cheese Soup

This is a quick and easy recipe. It's super good to boot. Yum! A coworker brought this soup to work for a lunch one day and printed the recipe out for everyone. The original recipe came from

1 can family size cream of chicken soup (I once used cream of celery, no biggie)
3 tablespoons of grated onion
2 tablespoons of butter
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 package fresh or frozen broccoli florets, steamed until very tender

-In a large pot, saute onion in the butter. Over low heat: Add can of soup (undiluted) to pot and stir.
-Add cheese and stir until thoroughly melted. Add milk and whisk until smooth. And broccoli and stir. Simmer until bubbly.

-This can be good using a package of mixed broccoli and cauliflower, steamed.
-You may add 2 packages of broccoli if you like it really broccoli-y.
-After sauteing the onion, you can put all the ingredients into a crockpot and cook, stirring occasionally, until bubbly.

Not the most flattering pic, but it was taken with my blackberry so that's what you get.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Chicken and Pasta Primavera

Justin requested that we have something "new" for dinner tonight. We rotate about 6-8 different dishes when we cook...needless to say, it was definitely time for a change.

We searched all the cookbooks that we have (which is quite a few...I was definitely sent a subtle hint from friends/family with the cookbooks as gifts for the wedding) for some new recipes to try.

We went with Chicken and Pasta Primavera from the "Quick fixes from brand name mixes" cookbook.
1 tablespoon of margarine or butter
3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 cup of water
1/2 cup dry white wine or water
1 package Knorr Recipe Classics Spring Vegetable Soup, dip and Recipe Mix
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
8 ounches linguine, cooked and drained

How to:
In large skillet, melt margarine over medium-high heat and cook chicken and garlic, stirring frequently, 5 minutes.
Stir in water, wine, recipe mix and pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center.
Toss chicken mixture with hot linguine.

I thought I got a picture with my phone, but somehow it did not save and/or send to my e-mail.

I thought it was pretty good. I am a big garlic fan and this definitely had a bunch of garlic. It's a good thing we didn't try to make this for Valentine's Day dinner because wow, we have some garlic breath. Justin gave it a 6/10 so I don't think it will be something that will be added into our normal rotation.

Weekend recap

We had a wonderful and relaxing weekend...much needed after a work week from hell for both of us.

After my pit stop to pick up Justin's valentine's gift; I came home from work to a vodka and Red Bull waiting for me. We sat at our kitchen table playing Nertz (best card game, EVER!), drinking some adult beverages, and eating chips with dip until about 3AM.

We slept late on Saturday to catch up on a little bit of sleep. Soon after Justin got up, we decided to make pizza for lunch. Quick and easy dough from the box and sauce from a jar. We continued our Nertz marathon as we ate lunch. We played for another 3 hours or so when we decided to take a short nap before dinner (yes, lots of relaxation!!).

For dinner, we went to Longhorn Steakhouse because we had gift cards from Christmas (we are in money saving mode). We both got the white cheddar and bacon stuffed filet. It was soooo good!!!

After dinner, we came home to play more Nertz...believe it or not. Luckily our Nertz marathon was broken up because we might have played for hours. :) Rick and Amy came over to play some games and have a couple of drinks. We played quite a few games of Apples to Apples, which is my FAVORITE board game ever. Very fun. We went to bed soon after they left and slept late again today.

We had no real plans for today (love that!). Our big trip for the day was to the grocery store (ugh). Our big task for the day was to mate the huge mound of socks that has been piling up above our washer and dryer since we moved in. It feels so much better to have that shelf cleared.

Lots 'o socks to mate.

And for my Valentine's Day gift from the hubby:

Pretty flowers!

Please note the beer glass that they are placed into. Very fitting for our Valentine's Day weekend. I also got conversation hearts (my fave!) and a wife card (yay!!!).

I hope everyone had a great Valentine's weekend.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone!!

We have never been big VDay people. The first couple ye
ars we went" all out", but it has tapered off dramatically. This dramatic tapering I speak of will be demonstrated CLEARLY in my recap of some of our Valentine's Day celebrations...

  • Our first Valentine's Day was very typical of seniors in high school. He got me red roses, a stuffed bear (I think), and a card. I really can't remember what I got him, but I am sure it was lame (Ha, oops). I specifically remember this year because I bought new black dress pants and a red, sparkly tube top to wear to dinner. Note to self: February 14th in the midwest is typically not a time to wear a cute little tube top. This year was no different. I froze my butt off!! Dinner was nice even if I had to wear my coat the entire time. :)
  • We continued our typical Vday celebrations with flowers, cards, stuffed animals, etc. For our 2nd or 3rd Vday together, I got him a red, stuffed bear that was holding a heart that says "I love you." I am not sure why I got him a stuffed animal; he definitely never got any use out of it. Not to worry, I soon became an indian-giver and took back the bear. It is the bear that I have slept with for the last 5 or 6 years. :)
  • When we were in college, we had NO money to celebrate Vday (this is where the tapering starts). One year, we decided to go the mucho cheapo route and go to Pizza Street. It's a pizza buffet in the KC area that only costs $3.49 for all you can eat (annoying jingle!!). Great idea, less than 10 bucks and we were celebrating Vday. Yeah, great idea until you get there to realize it is "kids eat free night." That was miserable. Needless to say it was not the most romantic Vday.
  • Now, jumping to this year. Here is what I got my husband for our first Valentine's Day as husband and wife
30 of 'em. Cans even. So classy and romantic. He loved it though. :)

I hope everyone has a great Valentine's Day with their loved ones. Have a great day and a wonderful weekend!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Here is my first attempt at changing the layout of my blog (beyond the templates that blogger offers). I can't decide if I really like it...we'll see if it grows on me. I have this new found love for the black and white damask patterns, but I don't know if this is quite the pattern I am thinking of.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

RIP Coach Strodtman

It's the weirdest thing saying "RIP" for Coach Strodtman. I hate that acronym...but when thinking of a title for the post, RIP seems the most fitting. And I can actually imagine him HATING anyone saying RIP in regards to his death. Ick.

Coach Strodtman was my high school assistant soccer coach for freshman and sophomore year. With that being said, he had the most impact on my life of any soccer coach I ever played for. The 2 years I played for him were the most influential in my life out of the 13 years I played soccer.

He passed away one year ago today. He was diagnosed with intestinal cancer in which he battled for something crazy like 8 years. He coached and taught the ENTIRE time. Who does that?? Who is faced with a poor prognosis and continues to touch the lives of many through their teaching and love of a game?? Coach Strodtman did.

Alan Jackson's Small Town Southern Man has reminded me of Coach Strodtman since the first time I heard it....

Born the middle son of a farmer
And a small town Southern man
Like his daddy's daddy before him
Brought up workin' on the land
Fell in love with a small town woman
And they married up and settled down
Natural way of life if you're lucky
For a small town Southern man

First there came four pretty daughters
For this small town Southern man
Then a few years later came another
A boy, he wasn't planned
Seven people livin' all together
In a house built with his own hands
Little words with love and understandin'
From a small town Southern man

And he bowed his head to Jesus
And he stood for Uncle Sam
And he only loved one woman
(He) was always proud of what he had
He said his greatest contribution
Is the ones he'll leave behind
Raised on the ways and gentle kindness
Of a small town Southern man
(Raised on the ways and gentle kindness)
(Of a small town Southern man)

Callous hands told the story
For this small town Southern man
He gave it all to keep it all together
And keep his family on his land
Like his daddy, years wore out his body
Made it hard just to walk and stand
You can break the back
But you can't break the spirit
Of a small town Southern man

Finally death came callin'
For this small town Southern man
He said it's alright 'cause I see angels
And they got me by the hand
Don't you cry, and don't you worry
I'm blessed, and I know I am
'Cause God has a place in Heaven
For a small town Southern man

"He said his greatest contribution is the ones he'll leave behind." I think this line really captures the reason I associate this song with Coach Strodtman. His children meant the world to him, but so did the people he coached. He contributed SO.MUCH. to so many people that this line just makes sense when associating him with this song.

Coach Strodtman was such a unique character that it's really hard to explain unless you knew him. He was an incredible person. I feel amazingly blessed to have known him, been coached by him, and to have continued a friendship with him after my soccer career. He is one of those people that makes you a better person for having known him.

What a familiar picture for me. This is how I best remember him...on the sideline of our games coaching.

There are so many memories that I have of Coach Strodtman...

  • "What is that bow on your head?? Take it off!" This is what Coach Strodtman said to one of my fellow freshman teammates before our first game as a Kewpie. I can remember arriving at Hickman after being at school at Oakland Jr. High (9th grade) for our first varsity game. I was so nervous. He quickly calmed my nerves when he demanded that my teammate take the bow off because she was NOT a cheerleader. :) I was immediately drawn to him after this comment. :)
  • "You are sophomore now. Take your skirt off and play!" He said this to me during one of our first practices my sophomore year of high school. I, apparently, was playing really timid that day. He definitely got his point across and I quickly learned my roll as a sophomore.
  • I can remember my freshman or sophomore year when Coach Strodtman busted out the rule book to overturn a very pivotal call by the referee. He knew exactly which page this particular rule was. He completely "called out" the ref. It was classic. This was definitely not the first or the last time that he pulled out the rule book to overturn a call. This totally shows his passion for the game.
  • "I will be getting my dinner through IV as the team eats at McDonalds." My freshman year of college, I went to a local (Kansas City) soccer game to watch Coach Strodtman coach. This was one of his first years as the head women's coach at Hickman. He was telling me that the girls would stop at McDonalds for dinner on the way home, but that the doctors had recently inserted a central line into him so he would be having "dinner" through his IV on his way home. The heart he demonstrated with that quote will never be erased from my memory.
  • "Tell her to take her skirt off and play." Coach, ever so pleasantly, said this to my mother-in-law when she told him about my thoughts about possibly quitting my college soccer team because of a conflict with my coach. I TOTALLY needed that at that point in my soccer career. I am pretty sure I would have quit because I was fed up with soccer. He definitely kept my heart in the game from the time I was a sophomore in high school until I finished my career as a graduating senior in college. I definitely thank him for that.
  • "The pitch." Such a random quote. He always referred to the soccer field as the pitch. Anytime I hear it referred to that, I will always think of him. I love it. :)

Who could forget his pink hat?? It was either the pink hat or the camo hat. :) Along with the hat...who could forget that high pitch voice? It was the voice that was SO familiar to highschool coaches, refs, and players around the central Missouri area. I do not want to remember him any other way.

As I sit here with tears streaming down my face in my #13 Superman t-shirt all I have to say is....thank you Coach for passing on your passion for life. I thiank you for teaching me to have the same type of passion . And I admire you for passing along that passion to so many people. RIP Coach Strodtman (even though I KNOW you would hate that phrase). Love you! :)

Monday, February 9, 2009

M-I-Z! Z-O-U!

Yeah Missouri!! Way to go!!

Mizzou just beat Kansas. The Missouri/Kansas rivalry is HUGE!! I am not a big basketball fan (read: I don't follow basketball until we do our march madness brackets at work), but I definitely pay attention when Mizzou plays Kansas.

The final score tonight: 62-60. Kansas had a 14 point lead at half. A Mizzou guy hit a shot with 1.3 seconds left to win the game. Yahooooo!!!

The winning shot!!

The Mizzou crowd that rushed the court after the game. Yeah, this game is a BIG DEAL.

Congrats to the U. of Missouri...and I'm sorry to Kansas (ha, no I'm not!!). :):):)

Tiffany's birthday celebration.

I had a BLAST on Friday night celebrating Tiffany's birthday.

We went to Tengo Sed Cantino at the Power and Light District in KC. It is a Mexican restaurant by day and a dance club by night. Many of the bars in PNL are restaurants during the day and bars/clubs at night. It's a pretty cool area.

Here are a couple of pictures from the night...

I love these girls. Me-Michelle-Katie-Tiffany. Celsius Tannery girls.

Me and Katie. An unusual "normal" pic.

There was a little bit of dancing going on...just a little bit. :)

Just me...but you can see the poles in the background. There are 2 on the bar for anyone to dance on.

There were a couple of shots taken through-out the night.

And this is the look after a VERY successful 21st birthday celebration.

Happy birthday, Tiffany.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nerd Alert!!

I admit, I bought "Blogging for Dummies" last week after I created this blog. I got it in the mail on Friday. I have read a couple of chapters already and I hope that it will help me keep this blog cool, fun, attractive, etc. It has actually been a very interesting and informative read thus far.

And to my defense, the book was used off of and the book itself only cost $.14. The final total was less than $4 with shipping. I figured, "why not?"

So tired.

I am way too tired to attempt to create a recap post of last night's celebration for Tiffany. I have spent all day trying to recover.
  • Wake up
  • Lay around watching TV, reading, etc.
  • Drive to pick up car
  • Have lunch
  • Drive home
  • Sleep
  • Drive to dinner
  • Eat
  • Drive to movie
  • Watch movie
  • Drive home
  • Sleep
My day of recovering was summed up by this list from my husband. Thanks dear. Clearly, I have spent the day lounging, eating, in the car, and sleeping. Nice. I feel so productive.

I hope to make the said recap post tomorrow (pics included...Tiff, I hope you check them out!!).

We saw "Taken" tonight at the theater with Bill and Stephanie. I will post a review of that in the next couple of days. "nerd alert post" should happen by the end of the weekend as well.

Lots to look forward to, so check back often. I hope everyone is having a great weekend! :)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Happy birthday Tiffers!!


Today is Tiffany's 21st birthday....FINALLY!! :)

Cute pic, Tiffers! :)

Tiffany and I met while we were working at Celsius Tannery. I worked there for a couple of years during college. Tiffers was in HS when she started there, but graduated and went to KU (boooo!!!). I have since forgiven her choice in going to KU. She is doing awesome there and I am so happy for her. She is going to be an awesome long as she doesn't use too much Jayhawk influence in her classroom. :)

I am so excited for her birthday celebration tomorro
w night and PNL. PNL is awesome; I wish it was around when I turned 21.

ie is coming in town. The three of us always have a good time together and it should be cool to meet all of her other friends.

It should be pretty interesting since Tiff is not a big shot person. Well, I am so GET READY TIFF!! :) And remember some of those pics you took of me on my bachelorette party?? Pay back is a bitch! Haha.

I love these girls. Katie, Tiffers, and me.

Happy birthday, Tiffers. I hope you have a great day and I will see you tomorrow night!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Things are coming along...

I still haven't made any changes to the layout or header of the blog, but I have figured out how to add some basic features.

Shout out to the 7 followers of my blog!! :) I now know how to follow other blogs. I am trying to figure out the blogs that I am not following yet, but need to. I have added "blogs I like..." for the blogs that I am following.

And my favorite feature that I have added is the little tracker. It gives me city and state of who is visiting my blog and how they got to it. It's my mini-stalker device, love it!!

I am excited to make the changes to make this my own and maybe even interesting to other people.

I have a confession to make in a few days about how I am determined to make this blog cool. Check back in the next 2-6 days for that post. Here is my hint:
Nerd alert!!!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The randoms

I thought I good way to start out this blog was to carry over the "25 random things about me" circulating on Facebook. Here are mine (with a few changes and maybe some pictures sprinkled in).

1.I haven't played soccer since my last college game (almost 2.5 years ago, wow!) and I can't think of any moment since that I have missed it. Even watching the Avila girls play in the last couple of seasons, I haven't missed it. I would love love love to coach, but I have no desire to ever play again.
2. I hate sports drinks (Gaterade, etc.)
3. I only like Blue Powerade with Vodka (I realize this contradicts #2).
4. I am a reality show junky. The only show that I watch that is not reality is "Grey's Anatomy." Sad, I know.
5. I had my first "real" soccer injury during a fun tournament the summer between my freshman and sophomore year of college. A girl from the other team and I butted heads while jumping in the air for a ball. I still have the shirt that I used to stop the bleeding from the gash above my eye.
6. I have never been an "everything happens for a reason" type of person. I have had some in depth conversations with friends and family about this...some more heated than others. I do not, however, judge people who are these types of people as one of my good friends has this phrase tattooed on her foot.Me and H.

7. I used to skip out of studying because Justin wouldn't study and do well on tests....I however, did not do as well.
8. I was a safety patrol officer in elementary school...fully equipped with the orange sash.
9. We had a bride and groom kewpie cake topper (and another one sitting on the cake table) for our wedding cake. I don't think anyone noticed that and it was by far one of my favorite details from our wedding.
10. I like my steak medium rare.
11. I can remember the first time hearing "Amazed" by Lonestar on the radio. I was in 9th grade on the bus to go to an away basketball game. A couple of days before that, Justin had told me how much that song reminded me of him. I love that I can still remember that moment and that it was our wedding song. <3
12. I used to hate sour cream. Now I love it.
13. I started trying out for volleyball in 6th grade, but quit a couple of days into because all of my friends had already been playing for a couple of years. I ended up just being the manager so I could still hang out with my friends.
14. I feel incredibly lucky for the family that I married into. They are awesome (not so random, as everyone already knows my love for them).And this is just one side of my married into fam. :)
15. I once got separated from my mom in the Independence shopping center during Christmas time. oops.
16. I love the smell of tide and wish they would make a Tide candle.
17. I pop my hips and it looks like I'm leaning over to fart :) <--stole this one from (my sister-in-law) paula
18. I am not of fan of all things domestic. I am just now startingg to like to cook, but I definitely hate to clean.
19. I have slept with a stuffed animal for as long as I can remember...and still do.
20. I eat honey with my chicken nuggets.
21. I worked at Taco Bell from the time I was 16 until the summer before my sophomore year of college. I loved it!
22. All of the things that I hated about my hometown growing up, I miss like crazy now. I hope to move back there in the next few years...and this may come sooner than expected.
23. Whenever I have kids, I am really excited to have a girl so I can dress in her lots of pink (although I hated when my mom dressed me in pink, and dresses, and frills).
24. I have been in 4 accidents in my life and only one has been my fault...knock on wood.
25. I met some really great, lifelong friends at Avila...including my bestfriend KLN.


Welcome to The Foster Following.

I have decided to start a blog to:
-keep distant friends and family up-to-date on our lives
-encourage others to start blogs
-not feel like such an anonymous stalker of other blogs (that's a biggie!! :)

I will try to update as often as possible, but we tend to lead boring lives so I am not sure how much I will have to blog about. Stay tuned for the progress! :)