Tag Archives: Tinsley

Easter Weekend Recap

Friday I soaked up the sunshine on the softball field at Albion while my pups got royal treatment from two of my former students and former athlete.  I originally thought they were just going to let them out every now and then but they kept them roaming around the fields, soaking in the sun, chewing up sticks, meeting new people and dogs, and being spectators at the baseball and softball games.

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My friend Stange and I loaded up the car with the two mutts and headed to the east side of Michigan to be with our families for the weekend….. but first we had a quick surprise stop off at my brother and sister in laws, so see my cute little niece.

We were at a stop light, I promise!
We were at a stop light, I promise!
Missed this adorable little face.
Missed this adorable little face.

Saturday morning I had my first dress fitting for my wedding dress….eeekkkk!!! So crazy! It went great! There is a great deal of work that needs to be done to it, but I know I am going to look marvelous no matter what! My friend, and bridesmaid, Colby joined along with my mom and I and we enjoyed a yummy brunch after.

Saturday was my sister-in-law’s birthday and we had a late night pizza dinner and sat around the kitchen table and opened presents with her while family and friends came over to see Ms. Mackenzie Elizabeth. She definitely stole the show all weekend!

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Mackenzie and I watched some basketball together… I decided it’s never to early for her to learn the rules of basketball, understand the teams, and know the difference between a foul on the floor and a shooting foul.  She kept interest for quite a while and then got bored so I had to teach Tinsley.

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Easter was amazing.  We have never necessarily been a church-going family, so I internally celebrated the rise of Jesus and realized how blessed I truly am to have everything I do in my life.

We celebrated with brunch with our dear family friends. There was wayyyyyyyy too much food and I may or may not have put myself into a giant food coma…. We finished up the brunch with our annual easter egg hunt. Usually, I wear my soccer cleats, put on eye black, and stretch really well before this competitive event. Howeverrrr, this year, we had some toddlers in the mix so I had to “play fair”.

little Dave finding eggs!
little Dave finding eggs!
The whole group (mom was taking the picture)
The whole group (mom was taking the picture)

One of the best parts about the weekend was being able to get together a bunch of little minions and assemble our WEDDING INVITATIONS!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHH 🙂 SOooooooooOooOOOooooOOOOOOoooo exciting!!!! ((plus, we got our first RSVPs!))

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I missed Mike all weekend as he had to work… but all in all it was a great time with family and friends. I truly am blessed. 

((besides for being sick all weekend – will post more about this later!!))


What to do when the dogs wake you up at 5am….

Blog of course!

It’s been a rough few days here with the integration of the new puppy! Well, it hasn’t been that bad, but the fact that I am writing this at 5:48am doesn’t make me all that happy!

We originally put Stella’s cage upstairs in the spare bedroom (where all my lovely crafts are) and the poor pup just hated it. Whined and howled and barely slept a wink (meaning she slept most of the day). Well, I put up with it for a few days and just couldn’t handle it anymore….

Just a few nights in, Stella figured out how to get outta her cage. Guess Australian Shepherds are smart.... my new sewing machine is being put to good use!
Just a few nights in, Stella figured out how to get outta her cage. Guess Australian Shepherds are smart…. my new sewing machine is being put to good use!

The clincher was when I let our other dog, Tinsley, out of her cage in the kitchen one morning and she BOLTED straight up the stairs to get her sister. Something had to be done.

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Waiting to get her sister from upstairs… and yes, the plant is horrid, I just keep forgetting to throw it out on trash day! 🙂

So I brought the ginormous cage downstairs so it practically fills our entire dining room.

And just like that, silence from Stella.

Who would have known that all she wanted was to be around her sister. Awwwwwww

However, this little puppy, at 9 weeks old, still has a bladder the size of a dried pea. Which, lucky for me, means 4:30am wake-ups to let her outside! Yippy!

These usually go pretty smoothly and they go right back in the cage to bed. However, we have found out that our neighbors get their grandkids dropped off at about 5:20am every single morning.  And when those car doors slam, you better bet Tinsley is on high alert and barking like a fool.

So yes, here I am …. wide awake and with two pups snoozing at my side.

Stella, fast asleep.
Stella, fast asleep.

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Guess I’ll get some homework done now… Have a great day everyone! Remember to smile! 🙂

My Christmas Surprise!


Of the canine breed….not a human.  🙂

World, meet Stella. 

This little sneaky girl!

Stella is a 7 week old Australian Shepherd.  She has a merle coat and mixed eyes (one blue, one hazel-ish). She is absolutely beautiful. Aussies (if raised properly) are supposed to be phenomenal, loyal, obedient, intelligent dogs.

Playing in the snow!

Mike surprised me with Stella on Christmas day. We had talked on Thanksgiving about getting one (his uncles breed Aussies), but he had convinced me (and I had totally accepted) the idea that we are much to busy to be taking on a puppy right now.  Little did I know, he had already talked with his uncles about getting one from them. That little sneak! 

Our beautiful little girl, Stella

Older sister Tinsley isn’t 100% sure about her new little sister, but she is getting there. We are working on taming down the prima donna in her and teaching her how to share and look after her sister.

So peaceful. Doesn't last long!

So now, we have been working to puppy proof the house, spent too much money at Petco, have had sleepless nights filled with lots of crate-trained whining, have toys spread throughout the house, and especially have learned how to say the word NO!!! BRING ON THE FUN!!!!


2012-12-03 16.02.02It’s hard to see her here…but this is where my little Tinsley has been almost all day.  She could sit here against the couch for hours just watching the world move by.

I’ve been plugging away at papers to finish up the semester and she’s been guarding the house. What a thoughtful little pup 🙂

Just a little tid bit to hopefully bring a smile to your face!!! Enjoy the day! 


Today is the little nugget’s birthday!!!

2 years ago I had ended a long-term relationship, moved back to Michigan, started a new job… Despite all the changes in my life, I new I was missing something. So, I went in search of a puppy – around 2 years old so I didn’t have to train it too much and it was already over that dreadful puppy stage.

Instead, I ended up with this.

Not a 2 year old established dog. A 3 month old Chug mix puppy who was formerly named Sadie. Yes, a Chug. A chihuahua/pug mix.

I had been looking at (Sadie) and her brothers and sister on PetFinder and had gone to visit them twice. On the second time, I played with her, filled out the paperwork, was approved, and SURPRISINGLY walked out with a bag of dog food and a puppy! Whoa! I had NOTHING for her! My friend Jackie went with me to the Southwest Michigan Humane Society and took all these adorable pictures of the unnamed pup, so loved!

We quickly stopped at the dollar store to get a cat collar, two toys, and some treats. Then, she went to work with me because I had to go right in!

She was a hit with all the women’s basketball players! And so began the name hunt.

I wanted it to be something to do with her being a “Chug” and of course something with Dave Matthews Band. We threw out names like Stella, Coral….. and ended up with Tinsley. It fits her like a glove.

She has seriously brought so much love and joy to my life. I couldn’t ask for a better companion and a better dog. Since the beginning, she has opened up to Mike and he has accepted us as a package deal and has turned into an amazing padre. He thinks that she and I are quirky and a little weird, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. She is such an amazing part of my life.

Today, she is celebrating her second birthday, complete with additional gray hair on her beard, itchy ears resulting in an ear cleaning, and a bath for her greasy chihuahua coat….all the things she hates but welcome to the real world Tins.

This morning has been a complete Tinsley celebration and I am sure it will continue throughout the day. Growing up, we had a yellow lab named Scarlett and she always got a pancake on her birthday and I like to continue that tradition. Additionally, Mike’s family has a singing birthday candle that makes it’s presence at every birthday…. so we combined the two traditions! And she got spoiled with bones, food, a new toy and pig ears!

Again, I can’t stress the love she has brought to my life. And it wouldn’t have been possible if I didn’t make the choice to adopt.

Please consider adopting pets. They need love and a good home. Find your local shelter and check out the animals and give a pet a chance. You won’t regret it.

How I accidentally made pumpkin cream cheese cookies…

I know what you’re thinking… muffins and cookies? Interesting.

Well, let me just put this out there, I am not a baker. I do not claim to bake well but most of the time things just happen to turn out okay.

So here’s my story, in an effort to jump on every delicious pumpkin bandwagon, I decided to find some pumpkin desserts. I love to bake on Sundays – it helps me avoid cleaning the house, avoid homework, and relax. Every few Sundays Mike works allllll day so I like to find something to fill my time that really isn’t too productive. I guess it’s a comfort thing.

So, I went to the store, bought 5 cans of pumpkin (and a mess of other stuff) and strutted my way on home to make: Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins. They sounded delicious. I gathered up all my ingredients (no fancy pictures) and got working!

Then, I really read the directions. I was supposed to make the cream cheese mix and let it freeze for 2 hours. I definitely didn’t have the time patience for that. So, I made the concoction and threw it in the freezer, spoon in the bowl and everything.

Then I got working on the dry mix. Didn’t have enough cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, or pumpkin pie spice. Ah yes, no baking soda either. Somehow, I made it happen. ((I like to just throw things in the bowl when I get frustrated))

I filled my muffin pans with liners and put in the muffin mix. I gracefully added ‘dollops’ of cream cheese in the muffins, definitely not the “slice” as was recommended by the recipe.

Ah yes, did I mention the cream cheese only sat in the freezer for about 15 minutes?

Additionally, did I mention I only have enough muffin liners to make 20 muffins?

And so begins the story of the pumpkin cream cheese/chocolate chip muffins. I’m an inventive genius.

While going about these next few steps all I kept thinking was “If Kim were here she would tell me to add something magical to the mix to make better cookies.” She is such a good baker, I miss her cupcakes. Wine has taken over her baking cupcakes. 😦

Anyways, so I added some chocolate chips because they always make everything better. (Did I mention I accidentally bought the JUMBO ones?)I made little lumps of batter and neatly added the dollop of cream cheese. Annnnd baked.

After a few bouts of 20 minutes, I ended up with a delicious smelling house and the most obscure batch of baking, ever. However, I do think they turned out fabulous and haven’t heard any complaint yet. The mail lady even asked for the recipe 🙂

Moral of the story, I should not be a baker. I would probably be better off crocheting or something for ‘comfort’.

Who am I kidding. I’ll just drink wine.

If you want to make your puppy really happy – add some pumpkin to their food! It helps with their digestive system and they love it! I add some to Tinsley’s just cause, but also to help her eat her food faster when she’s around other dogs because she’s an “all day eater”. Parmesan cheese works well for that too!

Weekend recap!

Happy Monday morning! The start to a new week makes me reflect back on the awesome weekend I had!

Friday was a day filled with school work and more school work! I managed to break away when Mike came home from work and we met up with his parents for the Goshen Noon Kiwanis Cornhole tournament – Mike and his dad were competing and I think they were a bit incredibly surprised to find out that other people had “skill” and actually participated in tournaments regularly…. Needless to say they were the first ones eliminated from the regular bracket and the losers bracket… but we got to explore Goshen’s First Friday event downtown – walked around (in the rain) and explored the little shops and all the vendors worked so hard to produce. I’ve always wanted to go so it was perfect that we finally got the chance!

Delicious Chicago Dog 🙂

We stopped off at a little bar/restaurant for dinner and I (excitedly) picked a Chicago dog and an Oberon – have to represent Michigan whenever possible. If you’ve never had either, you’re missing out on life. Or so I think. Obviously, a Chicago dog isn’t the healthiest selection, but everything in life should be taken in moderation!

Saturday was an amazing, eventful day! For some reason, I wake up early on the weekends and don’t want to get up during the week days (but that’s a story for another day). I woke up and made some AMAZING Teavanna Chai Blend Tea and started doing some school work and waited for Mike to drag his lazy butt outta the bed! We walked down to the Farmer’s Market (probably one of the best things about our house, the location!) Again, something I always wanted to do but we have never had the chance!

It was just as great as I thought it was going to be! So many local farmers/artists selling their produce, canned goods, and crafts! We walked away with some beautiful Zinnia’s, carrots, cucumbers, basil, banana peppers, and kale. I have no idea what to do with Kale but I wanted to get something out of the box! Adventuring I go!  One little pup was excited we were happy but was hoping for a pig’s ear… When we got back, I cooked up some egg cups, courtesy of Kim! I first tried them out first hand at her place then she listed the recipe on her blog and I had to try them out! We added tomato and basil for a bit more of a flair, DELICIOUS!

nice little Saturday 🙂



After we got all of this put away we  both went back to the school work and I convinced Mike to take a ‘little’ run break with me and Tinsley. 😉 We went a total of 4 miles! Woohoo! Well, walk/ran 4 miles, I’m not that good, yet.  It was fun to run with him because he has a faster pace than I do so it was like a real race, and I am very competitive, so I loved it!! We are both going to do a 5k this coming Saturday (ah!) to benefit IU Cancer Center and their research – neither one of us have been training the way we should be, but I think it’s a good place to start and a way for us/me to say I DID IT! Can’t wait!




Sunday was spent at brunch with Mike’s family – if you are a brunch person, check out your nearest Bonefish Grill – they have just started offering brunch and it is PHENOM. After that, we went to check out Mike’s brother and sis-in-law’s new house – just beautiful! They are going to be so happy there!!! The rest of the day was dedicated to relaxation and wedding planning. I am making a pledge to myself that I will TRY MY BEST to keep Sunday’s to Mike and I – no school work if I can help it!

Today’s plan – school work, reading, projects, mid-afternoon run and more work (shocker, I know!)

Enjoy this BEAUTIFUL fall day and think about how blessed you are to be loved. xo