Tuesday, January 20, 2009

confessions of a newlywed: cooking 101

okay, so with everything that has gone on in the life of the alleys the last couple weeks, i have not really had the opportunity (or the joy ;) to go to the grocery store and purchase all the ingredients needed for all those meals i planned about 3 weeks ago. well, yesterday i braved the "winter blast of 09" grocery store crowd and headed out to harris teeter...not for bread and milk because of the storm but because we literally did not have ANYTHING but popcorn and dried fruit trail mix in our pantry. i am happy to report that the two hours i spent in the grocery store were not that traumatic and all in all, an okay experience. (and i'm not EVEN going to address my disappointment regardling the lack of a true winter blast 09. ;)

so, tonight was the night...my first attempt at making dinner for my husband. now, don't get me wrong...i have cooked before and i've cooked for joel before but those times were few and far between AND usually special occasions. i did feel a little pressure (because who wants to cook something and have your husband hate it) but was excited to be doing "married life things." i know, i know...i'm a dork but i'm okay with it.

three weeks ago i sat down with a pile of cooking light cookbooks (we're working on eating healthier meals) and planned out two weeks worth of menus. tonight's menu consisted of horseradish hamburgers (YUM), baked beans, sun chips, and strawberry muffins for dessert. it was a little bit of a challenge for me cooking hamburgers without a grill but aside from that small moment of stress, everything went well AND the hubs claims that he loves them. we had a very candid conversation at dinner that went something like this:

me: so, do you like it? i mean...is it okay? i really hope you like it.
hubs: yes, babe, i love them. they're really great.
me: seriously, i know you don't want to hurt my feelings and it would make me sad if you didn't like it but.....i want you to be honest with me.
hubs: i promise, they're great
me: so you would want me to make them again?
hubs: absolutely
me: are you sure?
hubs: frustrated sigh ;)

so the horseradish hamburgers will make more appearances for dinner in the alley household and i'm glad that the hubs liked them because i thought they were really great, too. i'll be happy to share the recipe if anyone would want it...i know when you hear horseradish, you think spicy but they're not spicy at all. the horseradish just gives them a great savory flavor (according to the hubs). i'm also open to any and all menu planning and cooking tips. this newlywed knows she has a lot to learn :).

(joel was also very sweet that he let me take a picture of his plate right in the middle of dinner. he even helped me "stage" it. :)


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

confessions of a newlywed...

having been single for 29 years or so of my life, i was a little worried that i wasn't going to be a very good homemaker. i've watched my mom and my sister for years and if anyone "has it together" in the domestic world, it would be those two. i'm not trying to be negative or self-deprecating but i admit that i was worried that i wouldn't know what to do. i was concerned that it wasn't going to come as naturally to me as it seems for my mom and sister. and honestly, getting excited over appliances and things for a house? that seemed so foreign to me.
well friends, let me just tell you. the unthinkable has happened...all of a sudden, i'm excited about appliances. i mean, really...i LOVE my coffee maker, i adore my kitchen aid mixer and have actually been planning recipes (yes, i've planned recipes) just so i can use it and don't even get me started talking about all the wonderful things i want to do with my crock pot.

i have also been a bit encouraged that organizing the house and putting things away came quite naturally. i have seriously been tempted to take pictures of the linen closet because i have loved how neat and organized it looks.

so, while i have a lot and i mean A LOT to learn about being a wife and taking care of our home, i am encouraged that i can say that i understand how exciting it is to get a new washer and dryer.

maybe there is hope for me, yet :).


Monday, January 12, 2009

the nest

for all of you out there who have been engaged recently, you're probably familiar with the knot and while it was a fun resource for a bride-to-be, i am having twice as much fun with the nest. basically, it's a site for newlyweds who are working to establish their home and settle into married life.

i think we're doing well settling into married life (i LOVE it) and we are working on "the nest." we've made a few small changes and have some plans for the future. it's been fun making the house a home for both of us.

do any of you out in the world wide web have any tips on establishing your nest? i'd love to hear what you have to say :).


Thursday, January 1, 2009

wedding/reception pictures

okay, so thanks to some great family, i have some wedding pictures to share. we don't have the professional pictures, yet as we are still sorting through ALL the proofs! i can honestly say that the day was one of the most perfect and amazing days of my life. everything went completely as planned (eventhough every person that gave me advice warned me that something would go wrong) and it could not have been more magical. i was so worried that the minute the doors opened for me to walk down the aisle, i would be so emotional that i couldn't hold it together for the ceremony but it was the complete opposite...i was so happy and so excited i COULDN'T wait to marry "the boy" ;).

the church before the ceremony...it was absolutely beautiful!

the groom watching his bride walk down the aisle! :)

exchanging of vows and rings

the Lord's supper...one of the most powerful things ever....it was the first thing we did together as a married couple while jason sang "o holy night" in the background. amazing.

praying over us...

pronouncing us man and wife!!

joel kissing his bride!

the entire wedding party

the grayson family

the alley family

being introduced at the reception as mr. and mrs. joel andrew alley!

cutting the cake

first dance as husband and wife...it was such a sweet moment

dancing with my daddy

our goodbye at the reception...love the bubbles!