Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Emily does Nola

Hi Guys it’s Emily from Just the 2 of Us…and a Cat guest posting for Savanah while she is out enjoying her vacay.  I am also the girl behind the camera of Fleurish Imagery that is responsible for Savanah and Johns Christmas and engagement photos.

Since Savanah and John are stopping in one of the most amazeballs cities ever, New Orleans on their way to Gulf Shores I thought I would share some of my favorite things about the city. OK I may be a little biased about that city since half of my fam is from there, but whateve = )

First off if you have never been – GO, everything from the history, the culture and the FOOD is awesome.

 St. Louis Cathedral

My mom was born and raised there but after meeting my dad in college at USL they moved to Texas for his job, but we do get back there to visit, and the 6 hour drive is not bad for a weekend get away!

 If you are headed there and don’t know what to do I am about to lend a helping hand. I am lucky enough to not have to ever get a hotel when I am there since family lives so close to the city but if you are a first timer definitely stay in or near the French Quarter  - Bourbon Street, Jackson Square, the Ferry – most every tourist attraction is a short walk away.

A few of my recommendations:

Bourbon Street – try a hand grenade, more than 2 and you will be in rare form
Pat O’Brien’s – Get a hurricane here

Café du Monde – nothing better than people watching and having some yummy beignets and a café au lait – do this! Depending on the time and day you may even catch a second line coming through. It is typical there to celebrate weddings and usually done at funerals as a procession from the church to cemeteries. We did this as our exit at our wedding.

Crawfish – a staple in NOLA - depending on time of year, you need to experience a true crawfish boil. One of my favorite things is getting crawfish spreading it out on a table and having drinks with family and friends

There are also various tours you can do of the garden district, plantation homes, cemeteries/haunted tours, Mardi Gras Museums to see all the elaborate floats and how they are made every year, Riverboat and Swamp tours as well. 

Jazzfest & Mardi Gras are probably the most known festivities in NOLA, add them to your bucket list!

 While on the subject of Mardi Gras - King Cake, get one - just don't get the baby!

I do not eat oysters but if you do hit up ACME Oyster, it was on Man vs. Food and the guys in our family swear by this place.
The Flea Market – fun place to walk around pick up some NOLA souvenirs or just shop in general. There is also a great pizza place nearby called Louisiana Pizza Kitchen - DELISH
Shops on Canal – if you wanna shop
Audubon Aquarium/Zoo – I used to love going here as a kid, they have one of those inverted domes where it looks like you are in the water with the sharks, I always thought this was cool

More eateries: Mother's, Mulates, Court of 2 Sisters, Bourbon House, Mr. B's Bistro, Ernst Cafe, Casamento's, and Impastatos - to name a FEW.

 Drive thru daquiri and snocones are quite popular there too so if you see one nearby go for it!

Harrah's and the Four Seasons also go ALL OUT at Christmas with decor - it's fun just to walk around there and enjoy the mass of decorations.

I could go on and on about New Orleans so these are just a few of my recommendations - hope Savanah and John are having an amazing time on their vacation (I am living vicariously through you right now!) and I hope all of you visit NOLA soon!


Monday, July 30, 2012

Phone Photo Fun!

Ashlee and I are back for... 

Link up and come play along with us!

(If you are going to link up please give credit on your blog back to mine or Ashlee's blog by using our button or linking back to our sites)

Here's what's on my phone...

{LOVE these shirts we got from Etsy to wear on the airplane to Mexico!}

{she's getting SO fat!!}

{John is thrilled, can you tell?? ;)}

{China Glaze Pink Voltage - ready for the beach!}

{laying on the beach towels b/c she didn't want us to leave :(}

{her favorite spot!}

Sorry I slacked on pictures this week! I will be back next week with LOTS of pictures from Nola and Gulf Shores! 

Now show us what's on your phone! 

Friday, July 27, 2012

Much Needed Beach Vacation

Today we are so excited to be on the road to Gulf Shores, Alabama! 

But first stop.... 

New Orleans! 

I've never been to New Orleans and since it's on the way to Gulf Shores, we decided to spend tonight in New Orleans to see and do a few things before hitting the road for Gulf Shores on Saturday! 

John and I last minute decided we needed a vacation this summer. We didn't want to do anything big because of our long trip to Mexico in December so I suggested Gulf Shores. 

I've been once when I was in high school and remembered nothing but good things so after some research on condos, we finally booked one for 7 nights!

This is the actual view from our floor to ceiling balcony in our condo!! 

Source: vrbo.com via Savanah on Pinterest

Thanks to Megan and Michelle, we have lots of ideas of things to do and places to eat while we are there! 

Source: alwharf.com via Savanah on Pinterest

I'll have some posts scheduled for next week so y'all won't miss me too much, but I will "see" y'all when we get back! :)

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Healthy Beef and Black Bean Enchiladas

Linking up with Amy today from At the Pink of Perfection for the first ever Saw Pinned Conquered!

This was such a great idea and I can't wait to share some of the recipes we've tried recently!

A couple of weeks ago, I found the Healthy Beef and Black Bean Enchiladas recipe...

 These were so good and flavorful... it was hard to believe they were pretty healthy too! 


2tsp olive oil
2 cups slice bell peppers (any color)
1 medium onion sliced
2 cloves garlic minced
8oz lean ground sirloin
1 15oz can black beans drained and rinsed
1T chili powder
1T ground cumin
1/2 tsp papricka
pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt
12 6" whole wheat tortillas
1 16oz jar hat salsa divided
1 cup shredded Monterrey jack cheese or any blend you like


 1. Preheat oven to 350. 

2. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil, swirling to coat. Add the peppers and onions and saute for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and stir for 30 seconds.

3.  Add ground beef and use a fork to crumble it. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, or until the mixture is no longer pink.

4.  Stir in the chili powder, cumin, paprika, cayenne, salt, black beans, and ¼ cup of the salsa. Mix well.

 5. Spread half of the remaining salsa over the bottom of a 13×9” baking pan.

6. Lay your tortillas on a clean work surface and spoon a heaping ¼ cup onto the center of each. Roll tightly and line them up, closely packed into the baking pan, seam side down.

7. When all of the tortillas have been filled and placed into the pan, evenly pour the remaining salsa over the top.

8.  Sprinkle the pan with the cheese.

9.  Bake for 20 minutes. Allow the enchiladas to cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with sour cream and fresh cilantro.

My final product... 

Changes I made: 

-We used a whole pound of ground beef. I don't like to save ground beef and we buy them buy the pound so it was just easier to use all of it. I ended up saving some of the beef/black bean mixture and just eating it the next day with some tortilla chips and it was really good! 
-Because we used extra meat, we had extra enchiladas. We ran out of them, that's why there's an empty space.

Things I would do different:

-Stupid me didn't double the spices for this when I doubled the meat. It was still good, but probably would of had a lot more flavor had we doubled the spices for more meat. 
-I really think a packet of taco seasoning could do the trick... Instead of adding all the spices, I think next time I'll try adding taco seasoning to see how it turns out! 
-Use a bigger skillet! :) I made a huge mess because the skillet was not big enough for a pound of meat plus all the add ins!


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Losing the Weight

How do y'all like my new little Wedding Wednesday button? I still have a lot more Wedding Wednesday posts to share with y'all so I thought I would make something cute to go along with it :) 
Source: etsy.com via Savanah on Pinterest

When we first got engaged, I thought fitting into a wedding dress would finally be motivation for me to start shedding these extra pounds.

Then month after month went by and I kept having excuses. 

So I got my dress ordered in a bigger size than I wanted, but I loved it, so who cares. 

(this is a whole nother story that I'll explain AFTER the wedding, but my wedding dress I tried on in the store originally in March that I purchased was different than the dress that came in....)

So, because my mom hadn't seen the "new" dress on me we went this past weekend to try it on since she was in town.

It should have been a happy feeling, I should have teared up from excitement. 

I did not. 

All I saw was huge boobs busting out the top of my dress. 

I nearly cried from embarrassment. There was no way I would be seen like this on our wedding day. 

I'm going to have to share some details of my dress in order to get the point across... 
It has a corset back so the tighter she pulled the back, the higher my boobs got. It also has a sweetheart neckline so you can only imagine what kind of mess we were dealing with...

Everyone was trying to tell me it looked good, they wished they had big boobs, I'm just self conscious, etc. Ok, maybe so, but if I don't feel comfortable, how miserable will I be on our wedding day??

Where do we go from here? Do I order a new dress? 

Well my mom suggested taking my bra off. If you have big boobs like me, you know that is NEVER an option. I didn't really have any other options so I tried, and it helped. 

The corset back helps hold them up ;) but the sweetheart neckline still shows WAY too much cleavage and I know I would be super uncomfortable with that. The dress in the store I originaly tried on was a bigger size so it covered up more. I wish my consultant would have told me the sweetheart wouldn't have been a good idea. But now it's done so what do I do?? 

Lose Weight.

I know if I lost 20 lbs my boobs would get smaller. Now I am kicking myself for not starting with this back in January. I could even afford to lose 50 lbs. Image how small my boobs would get then?! haha

So now I have until November 16th which is my final dress fitting to get my ass in to gear and start losing this weight.

Oh and another motivating factor?? Being in a swimsuit for a week in front of 30 family members and friends!! YIKES!! 

So, to help me get started. I've gotten back on Weight Watchers. 

I lost almost 20 lbs in less than 2 months last year on it so I'm hoping I can do it again.

We also have a treadmill at home so I really shouldn't have any excuses. Even if I walk every day, it's better than nothing. I made a deal with myself that I can't watch Gossip Girl at home unless I'm watching it on the treadmill :) 

So my main point of writing this was just to vent and also to keep me accountable. I really hope in November I have a success story to tell y'all... 

Source: etsy.com via Savanah on Pinterest

(this is more of a "holy shit we're getting married on a beach and I have to wear a swimsuit in front of a bunch of people!")

PS - I finally joined Passion Fruit Ads so if you want to sponsor my blog or do a free swap, just click on the Sponsor/PR tab up there at the top!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

If You Really Knew Me...

Yes, I'm copying everyone else in the blog world for this post ;)

If you really knew me, you'd know that...

*I missed my calling as a vet.

*I very rarely drink water, instead I stick with Coke Zero.

*I order all my food plain. Sandwiches, burgers, tacos... all meat and cheese only

*I could sit in a beach chair at the ocean every day for the rest of my life and be content

*I feel naked without jewelry

*I was legally blind before I had Lasik

*I own every season of Dawson's Creek and FRIENDS on DVD

*I hate watching movies at home. I always fall asleep

*I have to fall asleep with the TV on and if it's up to me, I leave it on all night

*I was diagnosed with a heart murmur when I was in high school

*The scar covering my left hand is from when I was 9 months old

*The iron still scares me because of that

*I will go a week without washing my hair (and it still looks decent)

*I get a manicure and pedicure every 2 weeks

*I prefer flip flops and jeans over heels and dresses

*I could eat pizza every day for the rest of my life

*I hate working out

*The whole right side of my tongue is numb from having my wisdom teeth out 8 years ago

*Because of that I can only chew on the left side of my mouth or I'll bite my tongue

*I have over $30,000 in student loan debt

*I'm always on Expedia planning our next vacation

*I want to move back home, but I also don't

*I sometimes wish John would get transferred for work so we could try living somewhere new

* I get jealous really easily

*I have no connection to my last name of Cooper and can't wait to drop it when I get married

*My middle name is Elise but my social security card says Elsie

What should I know about you?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Phone Photo Fun!

Ashlee and I are back for...

Link up and come play along with us!

(If you are going to link up please give credit on your blog back to mine or Ashlee's blog by using our button or linking back to our sites)

Here's what's on my phone...

{my sisters BM dress came in! I was so excited to finally see the dress in the right color in person!}

{Drive through snocone stand - best idea ever!}

{Love my sticky grams!}

{front of my new Erin Condren planner!!! With my new last name!}

{and the back!}

{got my first thing with my new monogram!}

{She's a Diva...}

{Shirt I made for the day of!}

{Lucy has way too much fun while we're sleeping...}

{OOTD Satruday, finally got one of the bubble necklaces!}

{Went to the Galleria on Saturday and my shoe broke... and TB was the first store we saw... so I splurged ;) }

{New jewelry from Jewelry Nut Auctions}

{I told John my purse strap broke too... ;)}

{bowling Saturday night}

{got a strike and a spare in the last frame and got second :)}

What pictures do you have on your phone this week? 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - 5 months to go!

Yesterday marked 5 months until the BIG day!! 

I honestly can't believe how fast the past 7 months have gone by. It seems like just last week we were in New York celebrating our engagement! 

Anyway, we've made alot of progress towards getting everything together and ready for us to arrive in Mexico. 

Here's what on my agenda for the next month or so:

1. Invitations - We ordered and got our invitations in, now I just need to finish addressing, stuffing and stamping them. We plan on sending them out mid September. I also found a really cool way to address the envelopes that's super easy but looks amazing... I'll be sharing when I share the invitations, probably in October. 

2. Finish shopping for Bridesmaids Gifts - I've got one thing (which I will share after the wedding). I've got 2 other things in mind. I also am buying their jewelery as part of their gift so I need to pick that out as well. We decided on hot pink shoes (yes you read that right!) so I'm trying to find hot pink earrings and a bracelet that match.

Source: google.com via Savanah on Pinterest

3. John's suit - John says he wants to wait until November to do this, but my control freak self will not allow that! ha. He is going to wear a tan suit so we need to start looking this summer while they have them. I'm afraid getting one in the fall might be hard. 

4. Make a shower guest list and help our moms with it - Our couples shower is going to be September 22nd. Wanna know why? Because John said it had to be on Tech's off weekend because it's during football season on a Saturday. I'm glad to see where the priorities are babe ;) ha. It's going to be at John's parents house, Mexican Fiesta theme (complete with margaritas!). The Bridesmaids are hosting it but since the bridesmaids are our younger sisters are moms are pretty much planning it. Since my mom doesn't live here, I'm helping with it as well. 

5. Make an appointment with the priest performing our at home ceremony - Because we are doing a very low key private ceremony at our church, we can pretty much wing it, but I'd still like to set up a meeting to met with him before the day. We aren't doing readings or music or anything special so it's more to just sit and talk and get to know him before December 8th.

6. Conform the Wedding party is actually going to Mexico - This mainly is referring to the groomsmen. John has asked 4 of his good friends to be groomsmen but none of them have booked their trip yet. We completely understand if they can't come, we just need to know so we can start making appropriate arrangements and plans. I need to buy their ties (which are also going to be something hard to find after the summer season).

 There are a bunch of other little things that need to be done, but nothing that must be done within the next month or so. I am so glad we chose a destination wedding, otherwise this list would be 10 times longer.

We are so ready for December 17th! 

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