Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Here is our crazy Christmas schedule so you know where to find us over the holidays:

Dec. 23: Drive to Ohio

Dec. 24: Afternoon with Sonya’s parents to frost cookies, have dinner and open gifts.
Dinner with Grandpa and Grandma Kimmet
Midnight mass at St. Nicholas
Breakfast after mass with the Metzgers

Dec. 25: Morning to open gifts with Steve, Sharon and family
Grandpa and Grandma Mack’s for lunch
Steve and Sharon’s for Kimmet dinner
Lenny and Rita’s for Kirian dinner

Dec. 26: Metzger Dinner at 4:30
Pack for ski trip
Hang out with Zak (yay! Home from Iraq)
Hang out with Bryan and Kim (yay! We get to meet baby Brayden)

Dec. 27-30: 7 Springs PA…enjoying our new skis!

Dec. 30: Drive back to North Carolina

We wish everyone a blessed and wonderful Christmas and hope to see you all!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I wasn't kidding about the weather...

Just thought I would share a photo of Chris and I hanging out today. Yes, it really is warm enough to wear shorts here!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

Wait no it’s not! Today it is 70 degrees and I’ve seen flowers blooming. It doesn’t feel like Christmas at all here. The warm temperature makes it hard to get into the holiday spirit.

Monday, December 15, 2008

It’s the holiday season….

Our weekend was filled with all things holiday! On Friday after work, we drove to Raleigh to pick out ski boots and get our new skis assembled (they are our Christmas gifts to each other). We also stopped at the mall to pick up a few gifts and to look for something to wear the Squadron holiday party on Saturday night. Gotta love Banana Republic! Saturday started with a trip to the Commissary (on base grocery store) for supplies and then I jumped in to Christmas cookies! So far, I’ve made gingerbread, sugar cookies, peanut butter/oatmeal/chocolate chip and double chocolate/pecan/coconut. I have a few more recipes on my list to complete this week and then I can start assembling plates to give away. I love being able to share baked goods for Christmas! Chris and I went for a four mile run in the afternoon and then got ready for the Squadron party at Huske Hardware. Our friend Grant was being “Farewelled” since he is leaving the unit so we were happy to be there to support him and wish him well. He has moved up to the 82nd Airborne Division Staff and will be deploying to Afghanistan in late April. After Huske Hardware, we went to a surprise party for one of the other officers that Chris works with and had a great time. On Sunday we bought some holiday decorations, frosted cookies and watched “The Holiday”. Wasn’t a great movie but we wanted something festive!

***I would like to clarify that at this point, Chris is not scheduled to deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan. He and Grant are now working in separate units. As we all are aware that could change but for now, no deployment. Thank you.***

Half Marathon Instead

After much thought, I’ve decided to run the half instead of the full marathon in Myrtle Beach. After being home for Thanksgiving with very little running and then being sick, I decided I couldn’t dedicate the time that is needed to prepare for a full marathon over the holidays. And my running partner Caitlin broke her hip (stress fracture) while running….I know, it’s crazy. I’m happy to still be doing the half marathon and excited to run it with my neighbor Lea who is nice enough to run with me at 5am!

Long time, no blog!

I can’t believe so much time has passed since the last blog. Directly after Thanksgiving and we returned from Ohio, Chris spent 10 days out in the field training. Max and I spent a lot of time together and I think that by the end we were getting tired of each other! While Chris was gone I was able to keep pretty busy decorating the apartment for Christmas (not too much since we won’t be here for the actual day), going to the dog park, reading “The Time Traveler’s Wife” for book club and being sick. After about three days of feeling pretty yucky, I went to the health clinic on Ft. Bragg and was diagnosed with a sinuous infection. A few days with the antibiotic and other drugs prescribed and I was feeling much better. Unfortunately, Chris managed to catch the same cold while in the field so I delivered cold medicine and Vitamin Water when he stopped by the office mid-training. We are both feeling much better and back to normal.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

To Ohio and Back

Chris and I have been in Ohio for the past nine days and each day was packed with fun activities…to many to list! Some of the highlights were the bachelor/bachelorette party, Cleveland Browns game, Thanksgiving and Tim and Danielle’s wedding. We are now back in North Carolina and back to almost normal life. Chris goes into the field tomorrow for the next 10 days and I return to work. The vacation was fun while it lasted!

North Carolina Thanksgiving

A couple of weeks ago we got together with our North Carolina friends for Thanksgiving dinner before we all went home for the holidays. Chris deep fried a turkey and I roasted a turkey, made mashed potatoes/gravy and pecan pie. We had twelve people gather together and about every thanksgiving dinner item you could imagine!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

First Snow in North Carolina

Today we had our first snow in North Carolina! It lasted just 5 minutes but it was nice while it was coming down. From this morning until Friday Chris is in the field doing training with his squadron. I'm sure they didn't enjoy the snow or the fact that they will be sleeping outdoors for the next few nights.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Our friend Chelsa took photos for Chris and I this morning to celebrate our 2 year wedding anniversary and she already has some up on her site!!!! Check it out on the right (scroll down to Chelsa Schaefer Photography). We had a great time with her and her husband Ben.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Cuddle Time!

I couldn't resist sharing this photo of Chris and Max cuddling in bed. On days that I work but Chris doesn't we put Max in bed with Chris so they can get more rest.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Arrgh…I’m a Pirate!

Literally, an ECU Pirate! I’ve officially been accepted to East Carolina University to start my graduate work to earn my Masters in Business Administration. In January I’ll travel to Greenville, NC for my campus visit and orientation and then classes start shortly after.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Corn and Shrimp Chowder

I made this soup for Chris and myself on Friday night and we both enjoyed it so I thought I would share the recipe:

Corn and Shrimp Chowder

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 medium carrots (coarsely chopped)
1 large onion (coarsely chopped)
1 stalk celery (coarsely chopped)
20 ounces frozen whole kernel corn (2 bags)
28 ounces chicken broth (2 cans)
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more to taste)
1 ¾ pounds medium shrimp (I used frozen peeled and deveined)
½ cup half and half or light cream

In a large (5 qt.) saucepan, melt butter and olive oil over medium heat until hot. Add carrots, onion, and celery, cook until veggies are tender.
Reserve 1 ½ cup corn. Add remaining corn to pot, stir in chicken broth, sugar, thyme, cayenne pepper and 2 cups water (I only added about 1 cup water to mine so it would be a little thicker). Heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, slice each shrimp in half.
In a blender at low speed, with center part of cover removed to allow steam to escape, blend soup in small batches until smooth. Pour soup back into saucepan and return to medium heat.
Add reserved corn and half and half to soup until hot, stirring occasionally. Add shrimp and cook for 5 minutes or until shrimp turn opaque throughout.

We both really enjoyed the soup but thought it would be awesome a little thicker with chicken and sausage added as well.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Year 2

Yesterday Chris and I celebrated our two year wedding anniversary. For some reason it feels like so much longer than that (maybe it’s the 6 years that we dated before getting married). The nicest part was being able to roll over at 4:30am when Chris’s alarm went off and say “Happy Anniversary” in person. Last year we didn’t have the luxury of being together on the day because Chris was in Iraq. This year, we both worked a normal day and I made a special dinner (Chicken Parmesan). Just being able to spend time together today was special enough. We are having portraits taken by our friend Chelsa to celebrate in a few weeks and I'm really excited about it…check out the link to her website on the right.

3 + 3 does not equal 4 + 5

My running schedule has gotten a little off track this week due to a number of reasons: a weekend out of town, rainy days in Fayetteville, daylight savings time means it’s dark by 6pm and a running partner with a strained hip flexor. I did my long run (7 miles) on Sunday instead of Saturday making Monday a rest day instead of the 4 miles on the schedule. Tuesday I did three miles on the treadmill instead of the 4 miles from Monday and Wednesday I did 3 miles until it got dark instead of the 5 miles from Tuesday….were you able to follow all of that?!?!?!? Fayetteville isn’t the safest place to run so I try to run either with my running partner Caitlin or in daylight hours…which are fleeting because of the time change. I’m not worried about missing a couple of miles but I do want to follow the training as close as possible. Hopefully next week will be back to normal and Caitlin will be feeling better!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Family, Hiking and Fun!

Over the weekend Chris Max and I drove to see Allan, Tanna, Will, Emma and Jack at their home near Winston-Salem, North Carolina. While visiting the WEJ, we enjoyed a bonfire on Friday night with their awesome neighbors. We even got the chance to roast hot dogs and marshmallows over the fire. Max got some treats as well…popcorn left unattended!
On Saturday, we had a leisurely breakfast and then drove an hour to Pilot Mountain State Park for some family friendly hiking. The weather was absolutely beautiful and the leaves were stunning! It was a great way to spend the day. Max went along and enjoyed running up the trail with Will and Emma. He was definitely the smallest dog in the park! We had a nice BBQ chicken lunch grilled by Allan and then attempted to find some more trials but the driveway to the other section of the park was flooded out. We checked out a historical farm instead and had the pleasure of seeing some real life guineas (a chicken like bird that squawks very loudly)! We ended the evening with Thai take-out, great wine and college football.
We started Sunday with a walk around the neighborhood and then packing up to go home. As always, Max was a perfect traveler in the car. He spent all of his Sunday either sleeping on our laps or sleeping in the sun recovering from the busy weekend. All of the kids were really great with him and he enjoyed the constant attention! Chris and I definitely enjoyed being with family and as always had a great time with the WEJ!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Halloween 2008

This weekend Chris and I had two Halloween parties to attend on Saturday night. We decided on our costumes about a month ago when driving back from Ohio but had been trying to keep in a secret….Chris did better job at it than I did! Our costumes had nothing to do with an affiliation with any political party. Chris's line for the night was "A vote for McCain is a vote for America". So here we are as John McCain and Sarah Palin! Our friend Caitlin bought Max’s costume and we think he was adorable! Our friend Grant was a great Indiana Jones. All in all, a great halloween!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Fall Festival

Last night Chris, Max and I attended a Fall Festival held at a local farm for the Army families that he works with. They also sponsored a chili and dessert cook-off. My tiramisu came in second place (first place was an awesome pumpkin cheese cake).

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Official Marathon Training Day 1

Here we go again…marathon training! Last evening Kaitlin and I did our first official four miles of training. It was a slow four miles and almost getting bit by a dog did not make it any better. A pit bull literally jumped his fence and started to chase us. Hopefully day two goes better!
Also, CONGRATS to my Mom and her friend Sandy for walking the Columbus ½ Marathon on Saturday! I’m so proud of you!



For those of you who haven’t heard of any of Max’s antics lately he is still a puppy and very inquisitive! When we took him home last, my Mom gave him a red stuffed dog to play with. Now the stuffing has been completely ripped out and is all over our apartment!

Weddings, Weddings, Weddings!

My reason for visiting Ohio this week was….weddings and because of this Chris stayed home with Max and I flew to Ohio by myself! On Saturday I went to the wedding of a college friend, Amy and her new husband Scott. The reception was held in Confluence Park in Columbus with a gorgeous view of the Ohio River and the city skyline. Even though I didn’t know anyone but the bride and groom I made some friends (surprise, surprise) and had a really nice time. I’m so glad that I was able to be a part of their wedding day. Sunday was Danielle’s Bridal Tea hosted by her family. It was so fun to be there and a part of everything. We introduced several people to tea for the first time and I think everyone enjoyed it!

FRG (Family Readiness Group) Coffee

Last Tuesday Ellie (Chris’ Commanding Officer’s wife) and I hosted our first Coffee event. A Coffee is an FRG Officer’s wives function that is held once a month to touch base with each other and spend time together. It is purely a social thing and though there is a little “official” business it is mainly just a chance to hang out and eat dinner together. Since our event was held in October our theme was “Fall Harvest”. Ellie made a great broccoli cheese soup, ramen noodle salad and pecan pie. I made chili, pumpkin bread, homemade whipped cream and apple pie. We had a great turn out and everyone had fun! One negative thing did happen during the event….at some point I lost my military ID so now I have to get Chris to take me on base to get another one.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


This morning Chris and I both took the GMAT. For those who are not familiar with it, the GMAT is a test that rates business school applicants. And yes, both Chris and I are applying for graduate school to earn our Masters of Business Administration (MBA). The range of scores for the GMAT is from 200 to 800 with most people scoring 400-600. The test contains two essays, 75 minute 37 question quantitative (math) section and 75 minute 41 question verbal section. At $250 per test fee, the test isn’t something to be taken lightly! Chris has been studying for a couple of months because he is looking to attend B-School in the fall of 2009 (if everything goes according to plan). I just decided to go back to school and take the GMAT a month ago. We both have been trying to cram in as much studying as possible and you should see the state of our apartment…it needs some attention! The power going on out on Thursday night didn’t help matters but that is another blog posting! Luckily the studying paid off; my unofficial test score was 530 and Chris’s was 720! It looks like I’ll be attending ECU in January and Chris will have his pick of grad schools when he is ready to go!

Back to Ohio

Last weekend Chris, Max and I drove back to Ohio to visit Zak (Chris’ best friend) while he was home from Iraq on his 18 day leave. We left Fayetteville on Friday after work and pulled into Tim and Danielle’s at 2am. It was Max’s first long car trip and he did great! We put him in his kennel in the back seat of the Jetta and he rode home comfortably without so much as a whine. On Saturday morning we got together with some family for breakfast at First Watch (mmmm….pumpkin pancakes) and then went our separate ways. Chris and Zak went to the Shoe to watch Ohio State beat Minnesota and my mom and I went to Easton to track down the perfect lamps for her living room. Of course, there were a few other purchases as well. On Saturday night we got the chance to catch up with both of our families and hang out with some of Chris’ friends from college at Bubbys and Sonny Jacks. It’s always fun to spend time at the local watering hole with friends. On Sunday we spent more time with family, had dinner with family and checked out Kevin’s new building. Monday was GMAT studying for me while Chris went to the golf course and driving back to Columbus so we would have a shorter drive back to Fayetteville on Tuesday. Driving back to Fayetteville included a couple of stops on Tuesday, one in Athens, OH and then twice to track down the elusive Mt. Dew Slurpee that Chris was craving from Seven Eleven.

Look, the big dog is scared of the little dog!
Chris and I at Sonny Jacks
WSU Group Photo
Zak and Chris at the OSU game

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Nicole!

Happy Birthday Nicole! I hope you have a great B-Day and we can't wait to celebrate with you next weekend when we are in Ohio.

6 Miler

Lately the weather in North Carolina has been like Ohio autumn weather: cool nights, warm days and low humidity. We are really enjoying it and have been spending a lot of time outside. The weather has made it easy to get up and moving for my morning runs! This morning Lea, Caitlin and I did our first 6 miler and it went really well. Our official training schedule for the MB marathon doesn’t start until October but it will be Caitlin and Lea’s first marathon so we are running together now to start building a base. I haven’t been running consistently since the Columbus Marathon so I definitely need to get back into it and this weather is making it very enjoyable for me. I didn't realize how much I missed running until I started doing it again. There are certain parts that aren't as fun but I love having the time each morning to focus my day and the sense of accomplishement that comes from finishing a great run.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Family Rivalry

My alma mater, Ohio University, played Chris’ future (hopefully) university, OSU, yesterday. Here are a few photos of our family rivalry. We made a pot of chili (despite the 90 degree temp) hung out and watched the game. After a putting up a good fight, my Bobcats fell to the Buckeyes 26-14.

Chris and Max decked out in OSU.

Sonya supporting OU.

Max taking a half time nap under the table in his OSU shirt...we thought it was funny that he was sleeping on his back with paws up.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Virginia Beach Rock N Roll ½ Marathon

Chris with his 7-11 Mt. Dew Slurpee.
Two of his fav's Mt. Dew and Slurpees...doesn't get much better than this!

Bud at Mile 11
Kelly after the race...with a 2:15:55 finish time!
Chris and I waiting at the restaurant for the rest of the crew.
Chris and I drove to VA Beach to watch my friend Kelly, her sister-in-law Bud, and a friend of theirs Mark run the Rock N Roll ½ Marathon. Because of the excessive heat in NC, I chose to skip this one but was happy to be able to cheer them on! The course is flat and fast but the heat and humidity is what really gets the runners. This year the race started at 7am to combat the weather but it was still pretty hot and sticky. Great job the runners, you all did awesome! Watching the race did make me miss it and it’s safe to say that I will be running the Myrtle Beach Marathon in Feb. 2009 (training starts in Oct. if anyone wants to join me!)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Birthday Photos

max chewing on ribbon from the birthday giftsAwesome grilled asparugus, shrimp and chicken...Chris can work the grill!

Great Champagne!

Birthday turtle cheesecake

Chris in his birthday gift, a North Face Jacket