Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Birthday Celebration!

As I said in my last post, this past weekend we celebrated my 24th birthday! Matt did a great job planning it and we had a really good time! Highlights include receiving a gorgeous purse, attending Midnight Yell in Dallas, and of course spending quality time with my husband & brother. But, as I know we all like pictures, here is my birthday in pictorial form. Warning, there is a lot of pictures.

If you don't know me by now, you should know I'm a foodie. Matt took me to the same place we went last year on my birthday and that was 100% alright by me-- Chef Point Cafe! Our entrees did not disappoint and neither did our beverage selections. We had mini apple pie for dessert which was a perfect end to our meal!

My entree- roasted duck with orange sauce. So, so good. Yes, this is from a gas station
Matt insisted in getting a picture of the birthday girl
Matt's choice: better than sex fried chicken. Their name for it, but it was definitely amazing!
So we forgot to get a picture of dessert... I apologize!
After we finished eating, we waddled out of the restaurant and headed to the mall. Matt's big gift to me was the purchase of my very own 'fancy' purse (read, costs more than $30). It is hard for me to spend that kind of money on myself, but he insisted. So this is what I picked and I absolutely love it!
Continuing our shopping expedition, we next went to a grocery store. Exciting, I know, but we need to pick up supplies! Matt planned on making me a chocolate cake for my birthday so we had to buy some ingredients. On our way home, I had my first pumpkin spice latte of the season. So good! I also did something very anti-me. I got it fully caffeinated (I know, I live on the wild side). I typically don't drink caffeine, but tonight was a special occasion as I had to stay awake until midnight!  

Why, you may ask? Well, Texas A&M, my alma mater, played the SMU Mustangs ponies in Dallas on Saturday, and before away games, A&M has midnight yell somewhere in the host city. Don't know what midnight yell is? For complete history, go here, but basically it is where us Ags get together to practice our yells the night before the football game. Kind of like a pep rally, but way cooler. Anyway, this was the first time for me to go to a midnight yell that wasn't in Kyle Field, and though there was no mug down (boo), it was still a good time!

Downtown Dallas skyline

Yell leaders, chattin it up before it started
Some firefighters showed up. They're standing on the ladder behind the building
Leading us in a yell. 
We had a great time and ended up getting home a little before 1 AM. We went straight to bed, but that doesn't mean I went straight to sleep. Ha. Let's just say I'm still recovering from that adventure. It was worth it, but I'm not jumping at the bit to do it again!

Saturday involved doing menial grad school-related tasks as my brain was working at 50% and then 'assisting' Matt as he made my cake! We used one of his mother's delicious recipes-- Sour Cream Chocolate cake! It is the only thing I will eat sour cream in because it just makes it so moist, delicious, scrumptious, etc. LOVE IT. Anyway, here is proof that my husband did most of the work:

Nothing much better than homemade chocolate cake + homemade chocolate icing

That about sums up the most exciting parts of our birthday celebration. I got some good shopping money from my family and I cannot wait to have time to go spend it. The weekend was a busy mix of school, birthday happenings, and eating, but I wouldn't change it. Well, maybe take out the school work, but we can't have everything! 

Anyway, I wanted to say a special thank you to my amazing husband who planned all of the fun we had! I very much enjoyed every part of it and I love you!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Where I've Been

Obviously since school has started this blog has taken a hit. I'm still reading several blogs and whatnot, but the meaning for this blog has kind of changed for me. I don't have a lot of free time this semester and the free time I do have I want to spend with my husband, friends, or family.

Regardless, one of the central reasons for this blog is to keep our family & friends up to date with what's going on in our lives. As a lot of our weekends have been spent doing not-so-exciting things (i.e. studying), I haven't had much to report.

BUT, it is my birthday weekend, and Matt apparently has some plans for us, so maybe something will make it on the blog soon! 

So yeah, that is what has been going on with me. I hope you are doing well and have a fantastic weekend! Here is something to get your day off to a particularly happy start...


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

School, a Trip Home, and an A380

I hope all of you had a great Labor Day! For the long weekend Matt and I traveled down to Houston to spend some time with my parents. But I can't get ahead of myself-- the week previous was my first week back in grad school.

This semester will definitely be busy (isn't that always the case?) as though I'm only taking 2 courses, I'm TA'ing for 3 undergrad courses, writing my master's thesis, working on articles, and working on two different projects for my field's professional conferences. Thus far I'm depending on my desktop sticky notes and Google calendar to keep me organized and so far, so good.

My classes will be quite interesting though. I'm taking Delinquency & Juvenile Justice and Violence & Gun Control. Yes, I'm taking a gun control course here in Texas. The research is not what you expect, trust me on that. I would love to post some interesting facts & research findings on here, but I'm afraid it would make this space too political because as soon as you mention guns, people jump to conclusions. But, I may do it anyway. It's my blog, after all :)

Matt is also taking two graduate courses along with working his full time job, so we were very much looking forward to this weekend to relax at my parents' house. It was absolutely perfect! I always love going home and spending time with my parents + my husband = a very happy Jessica. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures, but here is a short list of the various things we did.

  • Stalked the Bush airport for the A380... and found it! Guys, this plane is HUGE. My aerospace engineer of a husband was very happy to see it.
  • Visited the National Museum of Funeral History. Don't worry, I didn't know it existed, either. We were supposed to visit the new paleontology exhibit at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, but due to the holiday it was absolutely packed so we instead detoured to this museum. It isn't creepy or anything-- quite interesting actually. They have a lot of interesting exhibits, artifacts, and even a strand of President Lincoln's hair!
Matt and I dubbed this the party hearse; source
  • We also ate. A lot. So much good food. On our first night, my dad grilled us some delicious steaks that seriously melt in your mouth- so so so good. Another highlight was a fairly authentic New Orleans po-boy and beignets (go here if you're in the Woodlands area; it is native-New Orleanian approved!). Along with some deep dish pizza and a hefeweizen or two, this girl is eating a lot of salads this week. But it was worth it!

So what about you? Do anything fun for labor day? We were able to watch some college football games and I am SO ready for the A&M game on Saturday! Gig 'em, Aggies!