the next food network star.

i am a bad cook.
in fact i would venture off to say that i don't even deserve a title with the word cook in it.
i am not a cook.
now with that said, can i confide in you a little bit?
the idea of not being able to cook stresses me out. a lot.
to be a great wife, you are suppose to be a great cook. am i right?
what kind of wife burns pre-cooked bread sticks anyway?
*eyes looking around shifty/guilty-like*

comparing yourself to others is like that "one step forward, two steps back" concept.
just when you think you are doing alright in something, you may see someone else doing
it better and it topples any self-esteem you just built up...plus some.
well that is a problem that i have even in my own house!

zachary is an in-freaking-credible cook.
put him in a kitchen and he is bound to amaze you every time.
i am not saying this because i am resentful about it by any means.
i actually really enjoy it.
he made me steak for valentine's day and for
the first time in my life, i didn't have to use steak sauce because it was that good!
my only frustration in this, is feeling like i can't make a meal
half as well as he can.
so...i am here to share with you a couple secrets.
i may not be a brilliant chef with 30+ years of experience like rachael ray and i may
not be able to make an appetizer, entree, and dessert in an hour
like bobby flay, but i sure can follow a recipe!
of course i love the food network.
who wouldn't love something that has millions of dollars invested into it,
for your entertainment?
but i just want to give credit where credit is deserved to two of my personal favorite  food
blogs that i believe are two of the best ones out there!

i don't even remember how i came across this blog.
i'm sure i was blog-stalking a friend {which friend, i can't even remember} and voila!
 i have been following it ever since.
they are really good at keeping up on their blog, which is nice.
especially when you are in the mood to try something new.
another plus is that they happen to be from my hometown!

this one is my very favorite!
the best part about it, is that this blog is actually run by my sister-in-law, nikki.
i think that we are on the same page a lot,
because she puts up recipes of things that
always look good to me.
in fact, last year when i was living on my own at utah state university,
i am pretty sure that this blog is what
kept me alive!...i'm being serious.
p.s. just for starters, try the wingers chicken recipe and the eclair cake.
you won't regret it!

i'm not sure that these opinions have much validation coming from someone who
just confessed how bad of a cook they are,
but i hope you will check these blogs out anyway!
i've realized that the hardest part of cooking is
knowing what to cook, so if you are anything like me,
they will help you out more than you can imagine.

also, if you have any recipes that you love and want to help a sista
out, please comment below with the recipe!
please and thank you.
good luck with your cooking adventures!

-the wife


in recent news...

we have had an eventful couple of weeks. so eventful, that this post is probably going
to be way too long to keep you entertained. in attempts to avoid boring you to death,
i will just tell you about the highlights of our experience!

you are welcome.

1. we were able to go to utah to attend alex and jodi's wedding! oh my goodness, this
wedding was so beautiful! don't ask me why, but i didn't take any pictures.
i am sure kickin' myself now! here are a few though, compliments of my sister-in-law...

don't they just look so in love! i am so happy for them!

our very large family!

 zachary, me, and arika at the luncheon.

my beautiful sister-in-law, arika, and her parade of boys...just kidding!
these are her brothers.
arent they so handsome?

2. all of the averett siblings got together to have a memorial night for their mom.
she passed away 6 years ago almost to this day. they shared stories and memories
about her and everyone made a dish for dinner that reminded them of her.
it was an incredible experience for those of us that never had the chance to know her!

back l to r: arika, alex, jodi, michelle, kelby, me, autumn, and deven.
front l to r: jayden, kloie, papa averett, triston, and brin.
{we skyped/called zachary}

3. i got to go to ephraim and spend time with my family and friends!

 i got to go to lunch with my wonderful parents!

 i helped my brother paint his house.

 and i was reunited with this girl!

 ...and ate way too much junk food. we are really good at that.

4. i was able to see my aunt and cousin when i got back to alabama.
i haven't seen them in almost ten years!

5. my cute boy graduated from asbc!

6. we made the long trek from montgomery to del rio. we stayed at air force bases along
the way and tried to make a vacation out of it. my favorite part was when we stayed in
mississippi. we went to the beach that night and just laid there, cuddling and talking,
while we listened to the ocean waves. i'm so glad i married such a romantacist.

{i could just eat him up!}

this was when we went to the back bay restaurant in gulf port, ms.
story time:
i look at the menu here and decide to get a chicken wrap.
i tell the waitress what i want and she stops and looks at me and says,
"honey, you are at a seafood restaurant.
you have to get some seafood."
{sidenote: i hate seafood.}
i kindly tell her that i am not a fan and i will stick with what i had in mind.
she was very adamant that i had to try some seafood though and wouldn't let it go.
zachary gets after me about being "close minded" when it comes to food.
so after all of her coaxing and persuading and a guarantee to be able to get
something else if i didn't like it, i ordered the special of the day:
mahi mahi topped with shrimp and vegetables.
one bite and i thought, "okay maybe seafood isn't all so bad."
two bites..."this is funny tastin'."
three bites..."i may just hurl."
i can honestly say that i gave it my best shot,
but i just couldn't stomach it.
i didn't want to be rude, so i thought i would just try to bear it.
that is until the lady next to us got up to leave with her husband.
she excused herself and told me almost sternly, that if i didn't like my meal,
i had darn well better get something different because that waitress talked
me into getting what i did.
i don't think i would have done anything about it if she hadn't said something.
zachary found someone and they kindly gave me a different meal.
needless to say, we didn't see our waitress much for the rest of the night.
moral of the story: don't let anyone talk you into getting something that you
know you don't like!
moral two of the story: don't be a push over! it gets you nowhere in life.

7. we are now official texans! we made it to laughlin afb yesterday and so far,
everything is going really well. we took some time to drive around town yesterday and it
is actually a lot better than we were expecting. it feels like we are living in a little mexico!
we can't move into our house for a couple of weeks, but we just found out that we
get a 3 bedroom/2 bath house. we are really excited about all of the room!!
as for now, we will spend our time gorging ourselves with these yummy mexican candies...

and seeing this every night...

-the wife

 p.s. we are looking at getting a puppy. so far, we are leaning most toward one of these
white german shepherds...

your thoughts??


the sunshine state.

this last weekend, we were lucky enough to visit the fabulous state of florida! and by fabulous, i mean sunny, beautiful, warm, and delightful. our friends brigham and chelsea moore and baby andrew came with us to visit one of zachary and brigham's friends from rotc, casey chappell.  he is stationed at hurlburt field and he was kind enough to entertain us. he gave us a tour of the base which was pretty dang sweet.  i don't have any pictures, because i didn't know if it was kosher or not to take any. so i played it safe and now i have nothing to show for it. sorry!

we went to the beach afterwards and loved it so much that we stayed for four hours! the water was a bit chilly, but that didn't stop us.

 {please don't mind the fact that i look like an albino next to my husband. i am self conscious enough as it is.}

this was great. zachary, brigham, and casey buried me and shaped me in to a mermaid. i've never been buried before, but just a word of warning to those that are claustrophobic...don't do it! i'm not claustrophobic, but if anything could make me be, it would be this. it's hard to breath or move because the sand is so heavy. kinda scary!

we spent the rest of the day in a town called destin.
i am now in love with this place. i honestly hope that we get stationed there someday. we ate at a bbq place called hog's breath. *highly recommended* then casey took us to this place on the coast that had a bunch of shops and a live band.

the whole atmosphere was incredible. it's so cool that while some people fly here for spring break to bask in the sun and enjoy the warm weather, we got to do all of that just in one weekend! we definitely experienced the epitome of the florida life...

-the wife


i'm a piranha. they live in the amazon.

so...i know i already posted about the zoo, so this post is going to look like we are some freaky animal lovers or something. but i don't think it i'd be right to go to the worlds largest aquarium and not say a thing or two about it.

first off, atlanta is fabulous. it reminds me a lot of what i would imagine the baby version of new york city to look like. you pull in and there are towering skyscrapers all over with the most beautiful architecture. the charm of this metropolis was overwhelming to me. you head downtown and it looks like someone just plopped these gorgeous parks all over the city. one of these parks {centennial olympic park} was actually our first stop. we packed peanut butter and banana sandwiches and ate here...

{i love this picture}

the park had a really pretty waterfall area too:

it was a little bit rainy, but still beautiful nonetheless.

the only other thing we did in this awesome town was, yes, the aquarium.
it costed about 20 bucks each to get in, but it was so worth it.

 we got to pet sting rays and sharks:

and there were real live pirahnas:

they had a huge variety of animals like otters:




and seahorses:

our favorite part though, was the 6.3 million gallon tank that housed whale sharks, zebra sharks, sawfish, leopard whiprays, bowmouth guitarfish,  humphead wrasses and schools of tarpon, pompano and cownose rays, just to name a few.  not to mention, the occasional scuba diver. almost everything in there reminded me of finding nemo, which made it even better!

"let's name the zones, the zones, the zones. let's name the zones of the open sea!"

"i am a nice shark, not a mindless eating machine. if i am to change this image, i must first change myself. fish are friends, not food."

"this one's a little tougher..he either said, 'move to the back of the throat,' or 'he wants a root beer float...'"

we had a lot of fun in georgia. now we can check off another state on our quest to visiting all 50! next stop...florida!

-the wife
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