Sunday, January 29, 2012


So today I forced myself to keep up with my resolution and make something new to me. Since there wasn't much extra time in my day I decided to make homemade granola. I had all of the ingredients already and I knew it would keep since I would be gone all week at a client.

I stole this recipe from a blog I read called Ben Does Life, it's his girlfriends recipe and its really simple but tasty! I tried a tiny bowl of it tonight with some milk but I can't wait to mix it in with my yogurt later this week!

Fact: Granola is delicious. AND easy to make (even I can do it!). 
  • 3 cups large flake oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup chopped or sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnut
  • 1/2 cup liquid honey
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter (smooth or crunchy.. doesn’t matter)
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup raisins/dried cranberries 
  • Heat oven to 350. 
  • Mix together oats, coconut, almonds, walnuts in one bowl.
  • In another (microwaveable) bowl, mix honey, peanut butter and cinnamon (sometimes easier if you microwave it before for 25 seconds). Add to the oats/nuts and fold in until all mixed up. 
  • Spread on one cookie sheet (I would go with one that has a lip/edge to minimize mess).
  • Bake for 9-10 mins. Take it out, flip it overstir. 
  • Bake for another 9-12 minutes. Add raisins/cranberries. 
  • Let sit to cool then store or eat!

Using large knives to chop up almonds is scary!!!
 There's my yummy granola bakin' in the oven!

So there ya go. I am keeping up with this even though it's getting really hard! This week I've worked the most hours that I've worked so far. I guess I can't complain though since the client was in Lexington. But I did end up with something like 57 chargeable hours!!

However, I did get to enjoy my time off. Friday evening Michael and I had a little date night and hit up Hugh Jass Burgers for some yummy burgers, sweet potato fries, and there's marshmallow dipping sauce! SO GOOD! Afterwards we came home and snuggled on the couch to catch up on a few shows. With Michael and my schedule our show watching is REALLY behind!

After working until about 3:45 on Saturday I ran home to take care of my pups and then headed over to my friend Mollie's house to hang out cause the Robertsons were in town from NKY visiting for the weekend!! Michael was out hunting quail with his dad, yuck, so he wasn't there until later.

It was fun hanging out with bailey, tim, mollie, and becca. After the Cats won a nice little game of basketball we headed out to grab some dinner at Sals. I stuck with their classic wedge salad and consumed 2 of there AMAZING rolls in record timing!

On the way home from dinner we swung into my favorite place... ORANGE LEAF!! I can gladly hit that place up at least once a week. So if any of you need an orange leaf buddy, look me up!

After hanging for a while I was quite tired from my long week and wanted to head home to put on some stretchy pants. I wasn't feeling the whole going out to the bars thing, especially cause it was so chilly out. That is when the Larson's came over to chill and watch a couple episodes of Arrested Development. Fun times!!

Then today was another great day. Church. Lunch with the Kastens (I haven't been in ages and we got to get the dogs out of the house for the first time in a while!). Then Michael and I used a Groupon that I had to use at the Movie Tavern since it was expiring this week. We saw "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close". Michael and I weren't exactly sure how we felt about the whole 9/11 thing. Not sure if it's been enough time. But I thought the plot was moving and I teared up a couple of times! We rounded out our day with bible study and picking up around the house. Oh and packing my suitcase once again.

I guess that's about it in my life. I thought some of you might want to know what's going on. Sorry there wasn't really much of a purpose to my post! Goodnight Friends!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Recipe update plus more

I wanted to keep you all up to date with my recipe making! This week wasn't a true "recipe" since it was so simple, however, I had never made it before so I thought that would count, plus it was SUPER easy!

 I made pulled chicken (Michael had it in sandwich form, I ate mine without the bread because I discovered my sandwich thins had turned green, that's what happens when you are out of town for 2 weeks!), corn bread muffins, baked beans, and peas! It was an easy comfort food filled meal. And man oh man, how much did I love having 2 home cooked meals in a row. Dining out is no fun to me anymore especially when you have pizza 2 days in a row, Bob Evans for dinner one night and for lunch the next day, and other nasty fried food.

My awesome home cooked meal yesterday was made by my one and only hubby!! He found a recipe on the spicy chicken sausage package for some yummy taco/burritos. The meat mixture had onions, corn, hot sauce, and sausage. Then we had refried beans, lettuce, and tomatoes! This was way better than something you would get at a Mexican restaurant. It was sooo good!

Of course I had to help clean out our fridge and polish of the orange juice with a splash of malibu coconut rum! Can you believe I have had that rum bottle since my 21st birthday?! There is probably enough left for one drink, sad day! (sorry for the blurry pic)

Also, since everything is so awesome I wanted to share my awesome workout that I did at the Johnson Center today. And can I tell you how at home I felt finally being back at the Johnson Center. Surrounded by motivated people, nice machines, and plenty to keep me distracted.

This run was awesome and with the intervals the 6 miles passed by so quickly! I ended up finishing in 47:59 which I was ecstatic about since I haven't ran 6 miles in months!

Distance Speed
0-1 mile warm up 6.5-7.0
1-1.50 8.0
1.50-1.75 7.0
1.75-2.25 8.0
2.25-2.50 7.0
2.5-3.0 8.0
3.0-3.25 7.0
3.25-3.75 8.0
3.75-4.0 7.0
4.0-4.25 8.5
4.25-4.5 7.0
4.5-4.75 8.5
4.75-5.0 7.0
5.0-5.25 8.5
5.25-5.5 7.0
5.5-5.75 8.5
5.75-6.0 7.0
My endorphins were out of control after this amazing run!!

Even though I had to work from 8-5 today I still felt like today was a pretty awesome day!

Oh and I totally forgot to mention, I finally got to see my Becca today! She moved a week or 2 ago to her very own 1 bedroom apartment and I went over to hang out with her while she got ready to go out and hang out with friends tonight. I was invited but couldn't convince myself to get myself ready and presentable and I kinda just wanted to chill at home in my PJs since I haven't been here much. I loved seeing her though and we talked for a full hour. I just sat on her toilet lid while she got all prettified! 

One last note. If you are one to read blogs I would recommend reading this one. My friend Jessica (and birthday buddy, we have the same birthday and went and got our permits on the same day) has been writing an awesome blog for the past year and she is a great inspiration! She has lost an awesome amount of weight doing weight watchers so far and working out hard, I am so proud of her!! So check out her blog!

Ok, I'm going for real now! Happy Saturday everyone!!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Just checkin' in!

Hello there little blog!

Not much to report here. Just thought I'd check in and let you know that I haven't died, just leading the life of a financial institutions auditor during busy season.

You know....

-eating out for EVERY meal.

-chillin' in the hotel room by myself after dinner with the coworkers. We eat, live, breathe, and work together each and every day.

-barely talkin' to the hubby cause there's no service ANYWHERE in the hotel for AT&T users. I think I have maybe talked to Michael on the phone for 4 minutes this entire week.

-trying to watch tv shows online -- tv show length 1hr 25min. Actual time it took me to watch because of SUPER slow internet 3 hours. Realizing I just wasted 3 hours of my life trying to watch a show that is an embarrassing guilty pleasure...*ahem ahem* the Bachelor (once again, never watched this show before in my life, not sure what my problem is!) Shameful!

-waking up at 5:30AM to get a treadmill workout in on some purty old tmills. OH and remember, no service on cell phone = no pandora = no running music. Luckily TBS shows Married with Children at this early hours.  Can you believe he's the dad on Modern Family?! hahahHOWEVER, made it to the gym in the morning Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Lets cross our fingers for tomorrow! This chicka is beat!

- trying to attain 55 CHARGEABLE hours a week...this is very hard. So is working in your hotel room after leaving the client.

- snacks, snacks, snacks!

-oooohhh Subway cookies?! Fazolis breadsticks?! Bob Evans TWICE this week, breakfast, yum?! Along with Mexican and Wendys?! This girl better watch out or she'll be puttin' on the busy season 15! One thing my group of coworkers discussed this week is our lack of ability to ignore food temptations while on the road. At least I'm not the only one that suffers from stuff yo face syndrome.

-Dreaming of wanting ice cream. Goodness gracious, Ashley please see above. I'm tellin' ya, when you're bored all you want to do is eat. Well, at least for me. You can ask the sour gummies and vanilla cookie wafers who I hung out with tonight.

- Wishing that one pair of my suit pants (out of the 3 suits I own, very limited) actually fit right and I didn't feel like a gangsta with a sag. Oh and also wishing that I didn't get mustard from my Subway sandwich on this same grey suit today, cause you know I RARELY get my suits dry cleaned -- EXPENSIVE!! -- (rarely as in I've only had my suits dry cleaned once since I started working at the end of August)

BUT tomorrow is FRIDAY! Which means I get to go back to Lexington! YIPPEE!!

Good night my little readers!

Monday, January 16, 2012


What's worse than having to work in a tiny town that's a 2 hour drive from home all week? Getting stuck in bumper to bumper stock still traffic on the mountain parkway. We've been sitting here and haven't moved an inch in 45 minutes.  I also have no phone service. And the reading apparently I have is starting to girt my eyes in the dark.

Yes, this is completely selfish of me.

Opportunity to be optimistic?

I am grateful I am not involved in that wreck in front of us that we've seen one ambulance leave another arrive, 2 cop cars, and 2 tow trucks drive towards.

I'm grateful for a warm car to sit in with Sirius radio.

I'm grateful for the great weekend I had with my hubby and some great friends!

I'm grateful we had dinner before we left. A nice and yummy dinner from cheapside.

I'm grateful knowing Michael's working in a different direction.  No chance he's involved.

And I'm grateful that once I started typing this blog we started moving.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Week to Weekend-ish recap-ish

Hey guys. Sorry for the what seems long to me absence from blogging. When people call "busy season" in the accounting world is really just taking away a lot of blogging opportunities for me since I have to use my brain for mass amounts of times 6 days a week and then I'm just beat by the time I get back to the hotel room.

However, Last week I was able to finish the third Hunger Games. Now I REALLY can't wait for the movies! So that brings my January total of books read to THREE! whoop whoop! And guess who is now addicted to the books?!? Mr. Michael! He actually was up until 2:30 am last night reading the second book on his touch pad! He will have the whole series done in like 3-4 days! I think I'm going to finish reading/starting Wicked and maybe starting "The Help" this week.

Last week I was actually pretty proud. I didn't use the hotel room TV once. Ok ok, so I did watch the Bachelor (what is wrong with me, I've never watched this show before, but I guess with my semi-boring accounting life I needed some women fighting for one guy sillyness, really, what has gotten into me?!) and I watched the UK game in the hotel lobby with 2 of my coworkers. But that was the extent of my tv watching for the time periods that I would be in my hotel room from about 7:30 pm until I went to sleep!
I spent most of my time reading and flying through the Hunger Games and then trying to get to bed at a reasonable hour!

I am also proud that I got myself up at 5:30 Central time 3 of the 4 mornings while in Indiana (working in Illinois). My body still does not seem to like that time because my legs don't really like moving that quickly in the morning. BUUTTTT I did it. Also, the gym as NOT connected to our hotel room so I would sprint through the snow in my shorts to the gym. Commitment. One week. Can I pull it off this week?! I sure hope so !

So, the little bit of a weekend I did have...AKA Saturday evening and Sunday was actually purty good but Michael and I were kept busy! Of course I worked all day Saturday and maybe snuck in a few seconds of the UK vs UT game. After work I headed home on a quest to complete a new recipe for week 2. I decided simple wasn't a bad idea since I was exhausted from the week. So I made a Lasagna. I have never made lasagna before, yes I know they aren't hard to make, but my challenge was to make something I hadn't made before, so there you have it!

The goal was to workout while the lasagna was cooking. That was a fail. I was exhausted. But I did end up with a yummy looking lasagna !

After consuming the warm and gooey lasagna it was time to hangout and socialize with friends since that has plummeted in a drastic way since starting busy season and working out of town more often.

We called up the Larson's and I decided I NEEDED some Orange Leaf. Of course, fat snowflakes were falling from the heavens, but this girl needed her froyo. AND when we arrived at OL they finally had the toffee flavor that I have been waiting for them to get for forever now! YIPPEE!

After froyo we all hit up the bowling alley. I haven't been bowling in forever and it was fun! My first round was terrible but I ramped up my play the second game and probably could have been close to doubling my first score if our lane didn't shut down when our 1 hour time expired in the 9th frame! 2 things I loved about bowling. 1. That I love people watching and so does Kara! 2. They played that LMFAO "Sexy and I know it" song a total of THREE times while we were there, none of us are typically fans of that kinda stuff but it was funny how we all were bobbing our heads and dancing to the beat!

After bowling we hit up Winchells (a local restaurant/bar) and the boys split a pitcher while the girls sipped on H20 and munched on nachos while watching the Pats slam down the poor little Broncos.

Do you see what I wrote?!!? This girl did THREE different activities in one night. Impressive! What fun!

Sunday consisted of CLEANING mainly with a break for church at Southland with the Larsons and Chipotle for lunch! The Larson's saved us by watching our dogs for a couple hours while we "de-doggified" the house cause we were showing it to someone. After meticulously scrubbing the house for days upon days and hours upon hours the guy ended up being here for maybe 15 minutes and he was out! (he does own 3-4 units in our area already so he was familiar with the area). He did mention how great our house looked though, it made me feel proud of all the work Michael, his parents, and a little bit of me put into it! Say a little prayer for us that we get a good offer this week!!!

And now that we just got back from bible study my eyes are burning telling me its time to go to bed. Sadly I had to load up my suitcase again for another week of work, but hopefully it goes well and I can keep on track with my reading and exercising which are some of the good things that come out of my little lonesome work routine.

I hope you all had a great weekend!! I'll try to blog when I have something blog-worthy!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Just so you know...

I finished numero dos in the Hunger Games series this evening...Lucky for me I had a 3 hour and 45 minute ride to a client this morning and got to read, read, read. Oh and I stayed up until like 12:30 reading it last night, even though I had to get up at 6. And then when I finally got back to the hotel after work I finished the final three chapters!!

Now on to reading the third book which I have downloaded, thanks to Jessica, on my phone! Yippee! 3 Chapters in already!

Also, true life texting with Michael and Ashley:

Ashley: Wood floors and King bed this time! (in reference to cute hotel in New Harmony, the picture was attached):
 Michael: I wish I was there!

Ashley: And  a personal patio!

Michael: Wood floors and 25 beds (picture attached) (in reference to the Morehead University Hospital he is working at until midnight!)

Oh silly willy husband!!

Happy Monday to all!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Successful first use of recipe!

Well I succeeded in my first week of using a recipe challenge. However, I've determined that the weekly meal planning is not really feasible when I will not be home for the next 2 weeks and Michael was gone a good portion of the week last week. OHHHH welll!

I have also been doing purty good at being optimistic. My first Saturday of working was actually not bad at all and really productive!! One saturday down, 11 to go!

Oh and I have succeeded in already reading a book for this month! Finished the Hunger Games Book 1 on Friday night and I'm about 2/3 of the way through book 2! Loving this series so far! Would highly recommend it! I also can't wait for the MOVIE in March!!
More about my recipe cooking.

Back when I was in Atlanta before Thanksgiving my Aunt Carin was prepping for Thanksgiving and making twice baked potatoes. Once I saw them and knowing my LOVE for potatoes I knew I had to try them, plus they aren't that hard to make, just a bit time consuming.

So after my first busy season Saturday I came home from work and headed to the grocery bought my potatoes and fixin's and made these delicious babes:

MmMmMmM!! So cheesy and warm!! Oh and random poll question? Do you eat the skins on twice baked potatoes?! I totally do, I will eat the skins when i eat normal baked potatoes too. Michael thinks its gross, but he also thinks its gross to suck the salt off of a pistachio shell before cracking into the nut!

It seems like I made a lot of them and that's because I did. Potatoes come in LARGE quantities and I don't want these suckers sitting around forever! Plus I opted for the cheaper smaller ones. But according to the recipe these babies can be frozen so we froze a good portion of them!

Here's a link to the simple recipe I used!

Also, in other super randomness. When Michael and I got home from the gym (we both went and ran yippee!) after church we spotted this beaut when we got out of the car!!

All these fratty looking guys were hopping out of the thing. Super random! Michael and I did end up eating hot dogs for lunch though (even though we planned that before the Oscar Meyer sighting!)

And now that I look at this picture can I mention how much I have been LOVING this warm January thus far!! No complaining from this girl! I ran outside yesterday in shorts!! That's normally craziness for this time of year in these parts!!

Anywho....super random post. Just wanted to update ya on my recipe progress. Looks like Saturdays will be my only opportunity to cook for the next few months!!

Hope your weekend was swell! My one weekend day, Sunday, was great!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

2012 Goals

Considering it is already the 4th day of the year I suppose I should get to writing down my goals for 2012. Because you know, you all hold me accountable!

I've been trying to think of multiple goals for 2012 but I keep coming back to 2 in particular.

The first:
I want to challenge myself to cook from a recipe/something new at least once a week -- Michael and I have gotten in a easy-to-prepare or eat-out rut and I want that to change! Also, I'm sure it's a lot healthier to cook from home! With all the blogs I read and recipes I see I shouldn't have a problem finding things to make! When Michael and I first got married I was Sooooo into cooking and trying things and being wifey and whatever. Well, that's tiring. So maybe 1 day a week for something fresh and new will be a good challenge for me.

I haven't made a new recipe yet this week since Michael has been out of town yesterday and today and we haven't been to the grocery. So, I'm aiming for Friday or Saturday. However, this working until 6 not getting home until 6:30-6:45 and then needing to workout. Then being exhausted thing (hey, it's financial institution auditing busy season!) kinda makes it hard to get to the grocery. But I can make it happen! No excuses! Oh and with that new recipe challenge i'd also like to incorporate more meal planning (I did a whole month in October 2010, and it was great, I knew what to buy at the grocery and what I needed to make every night!)

Some recipes I'd LOVE to try:
Easy Vegetable Korma

Stuffed Zucchini Boats:

Homemade cinnamon rolls:

Cold Noodle Chicken Satay:

The second Goal:
I am signed up for the Derby mini marathon (13.1 miles) the last weekend in April. The weather is cold, therefore obviously I HATE being outside because you all know how much I despise being cold. WELL I need to set a goal for this race. This girl is gonna attempt a PR (personal record). My goal is sub 1:50.  That is an average of an 8 min 23 second per mile pace. That is attainable. Yes, working 55+ hours a week and every Saturday until April will be tough and tiring BUT i will do my best! How can I attain this? PUSH MYSELF HARD!

A third that just popped in my mind:
Read -- I LOVE reading. However, when the hubs is home we spend our time in the evenings after hectic days chilling and probably watchin' Netflix. I need to read. I love it. When I was little my fav thing was to go to the Library and check out the max amount of books. You know what the problem is? Everyone keeps making these books I want to read into a movie before I get a chance to read them. UM hello Hollywood, slow it down so I can enjoy the book first instead of confusing myself with the movie and then being totally baffled when I read the book.


*NOTE TO FRIENDS -- for those of you who are super awesome and bought books and are done reading them I'd LOVE for you to pass them my way because name is Ashley...I'm an accountant....and a penny pincher (strange combo right, *sarcarm*). I am currently reading/own the first Hunger Games, however, I do not have any others in the series. Also, I will be working on Wicked after the Hunger Games!

OH the ideas are flowin' now - gosh I hope i'm not setting too lofty of goals for myself. I thought of something else -- #4 -- Husband time. -- Goal 2 REAL date nights a month. Where we plan an activity and it doesn't involve crashing on our couch and spacing out (I am not excluding movie theaters though, classic date) But I would L-O-V-E for us to take turns planning dates! Sounds fun?! Maybe I should discuss this with Mr. Michael. But I think he'll be down!

Goal #5 - Choose Optimism
I know this may be hard for me with Busy season (now - March), match day (March 15), Moving to a new city (date to be determined), Michael moving to a city without me for a bit (possibility), Making new friends, finding a new church, being away from family, being away from friends, etc. BUT I will choose Optimism. As Shirley Mann (my Sunday School teacher and an amazing 3rd/4th grade teacher (who had a school named after) also said, "Choose Joy". And that I will try!

Well there ya have it. 5 goals for 2012. What do you think!? Can I do it?! What are your goals?! Suggestions for books, recipes, how to be an awesome runner without even trying?! Anyone want to buy me treadmill?! oh ok....well I didn't think it'd hurt to ask! :)

Goodnight friends!

Monday, January 2, 2012


I cannot believe it is already January 2nd. Goodness gracious, where has my work break gone?!?! I woke up this morning sad knowing that tomorrow I'll be waking up to a blaring alarm and will be forced to shower and not wear sweatpants and watch "How I met Your Mother" ALLLL day long. But that also means it will be time for a fresh start to my year!!

I think getting back into my routine will be AWESOME. I have missed the drive of wanting to workout and once I'm back on schedule I don't think that will be an issue!

ANYWHOOO....who wants to hear about my New years EVE?! I do I do!!

Ok, well to sum it up I'd say shenanigans. It was crazy awesome.

I mean to start the day off we headed over to Andrea and Matt's house to watch the UK vs. Louisville basketball (HUGE in state rivalry) and this is the first time in a LONG time that UK and Louisville were ranked in the top 5! It was an intense game but UK pulled the win!! YIPPEE!!

We brought the dogs with us and this is what Willis did the ENTIRE TIME!
Michael's mom modeled the UK sweater vest we got her for Christmas! Super cute!

 Then the "OHHH face cake" commercial came on and we HAD to get a picture of Michael next to it!
 When we got home Willis still had treats sticking out of his mouth!
 Then it was time to head to NKY to celebrate the New Year at the Robertson's newer apartment, AKA not the condo! It was a classy affair of course with about 10 of us eating some delicious prepared food that Bailey made and hanging out ALLLL night! Good times were had!! We somehow entertained ourselves without much television for 7 hours!

We even played around with this alcohol infused chocolate whipped cream Lisa gave me for Christmas. Super random and lets say different whipped cream.
 Mollie was obviously offended about the straws
 The boys were goofy as always, along with Mary Kate in the background!
 Chris and his friend Alex were more on the normal side of course
 Jason and Mary Kate, cute as always!
 And of course Michael and I for some reason never took any pictures together that night!

But I did get a bunch with Bailey, I won't bore you with them all cause they all look exactly the same, especially with Hagan photo-bombing!
 Silly faces from Ashley were made of up the weird brown staining whipped cream off my face

 Boys being silly...again...

We all had a great time and cheers about 3 million times with Champagne at midnight. And somehow all of us old folks were able to stay up until 3 am and we all woke up around 9. Crazy old folks we are!!

And there ya have it. How I spent my new years, with people I love and people who are tons of fun that I happen to love too!! I hope you had a wonderful new years too!!

Hopefully a goals/resolutions post to come. We'll see, i'm not promising much on my last day of freeeeedom!

Sunday, January 1, 2012


2012 is here and it didn't feel right going through a whole day without blogging. I guess the habit became routine to me.  So even though it is currently 11:51PM I wanted to give a shout out and let you know that I am still here and that you should be expecting a full on New Years Eve recap, with some pictures that I'm sure will be interesting, and maybe some goals/resolutions I am trying to fulfill during the great year of 2012!

I hope you all had a very restful day and you will be hearing from me tomorrow!