i’m just gonna leave this right here

The last few weeks have been a bit blurry with work, the passing of my sweet grandmother, and a visit from my favorite Irish folks. So, to have had this week to just be still, has been a real blessing.

And in the quiet, I’ve been able to reflect and acknowledge how very sweet, albeit short, life is. How sweet my life is. And I don’t find it a coincidence that this desire for reflection comes two years to the eve of the day that I left Uganda for home. Two years. A lot has happened in those two years. And still, for every hope that I had for myself when I decided to come home, the life I’ve lived these past two years, is so much better than anything I hoped for.

Sooo….moving on. Being that it is Christmas, let’s go over a few of my favorite things!

The blanket scarf. Oh my coziness!!! If you’re looking for something to get your favorite friend, someone you’ve been wooing, your mother, literally, ANY WOMAN, you are guaranteed a win with this blanket scarf from Dillards. In fact, after getting one for myself, I picked up 5 more for some special women in my life.  🙂

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This Italian Roast Beef recipe for days that you want to be cozy (in your blanket scarf) and have our house smell like a delicious roast beef sandwich.

1 – 5 lb chuck roast
1 – can beef broth
1 – jar peppericinis
1 – package Good Seasonings Italian Dressing
1 – can dark beer (optional)

Place all ingredients in a crockpot and cook for approximately 12 hours on low. When tender and falling apart, pull meat out and tear/shred, then place back in crockpot. Can keep warm on low for many hours – it just adds more flavor.

I recommend white bread, a little bit of mayo, and topping with a provolone or swiss cheese to add to the deliciousness! Or serve as an open face sandwich. Enjoy!

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Holiday Gatherings. Is there anything more wonderful than all of the fun festivities around Christmas time? I feel like at this age, I’m past the “have to attend” gatherings, and have confidently moved into the “want to attend” gatherings. My time is limited, and I want to be present whenever I show up to places – whether that is one on one, or with a roomful of girls that you’ve known for years. I don’t want to be thinking about the next place I should be. It’s something I’m working on…

Last night, for instance, I sat across from my best friend in one of our favorite restaurants in the city, giggling, and catching up, exchanging gifts and stories, and gushing over the food we were eating. If you haven’t been to Cooks and Soldiers on the West Side you MUST go! And order the patatas bravas, and the trout, and the bikini. Because they are amazing. And then also order one of everything else!

Dates! I think it’s the New Year’s Eve deadline or something, but all of a sudden, there are eligible single men everywhere wanting to go on dates! Granted, none of them have turned into anything other than a) really great conversations or b) really great stories, but I have fully embraced this new addition to my social calendar. Hopefully one of them turns into something worth taking a chance on, but until then..bring on adventures in dating!

The Serial Podcast – Season 1. GUYS! Why didn’t you tell me I was missing out on this?! Granted, I’m 2 years late to the party, but at least I finally made it to the party. Now, the only question is….who killed Hae!? Don’t even talk to me about the new season because I’m not quite finished devouring all the details and conspiracy theories with this one. I’m seriously considering throwing a dinner party with friends who want to discuss it. Is that weird? Maybe. Want to be invited?

And finally, Christmas Break! Just two more sleeps till this little lady is off work for two weeks! I considered a trip to Denver, but Delta’s ticket prices made that an easy decision for me. So, it’ll just be me and Page, taking on local-ish adventures. And sleeping. And staying in pajamas all day if we want. And reading! I have a stack of books that I can not wait to get my nose buried in. Bring on the lazy days. Or the adventure days! Just bring on the days!

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I hope that these days for you are wonder filled!
Merry Christmas!
Amanda

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One Response to i’m just gonna leave this right here

  1. Larry Middlebrooks says:

    AWESOME! As always. Today was my day of prayer for you, but you blessed me with your blog. Blessings & Merry Christmas to you and Happy New Year!🎄🎁🎉

    Love ya,
    Larry

    Sent from my iPhone.
    L. Middlebrooks

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