Friday, December 31, 2010

If you never received a holiday card from us

it's probably because we never sent one out this year.

But if we did, it would probably say something like Happy Holidays and New Year's from yours truly.

Displaying this picture

(our first professional picture taken- and probably our last)- I mean why pay for professional pictures that are over priced anyways when you own a DSLR?

we're ringing in the new year with family, friends, Carolina football, southern cooking, and dancing!

Happy New Years!

Friday, December 3, 2010


Babies (and children) have been on my mind lately. Maybe it has to do something with nannying- I'm always around children and I absolutely love it.

And they love me- I just love when they smile back!

I've come up with a fantastic list of baby names- I love all eight.

Devin, it looks like we're having eight kids!

Happiness for today (is) Christmas deals.

Not so cool (is) temper tantrums in the library.

Man, I wish I could sing like this girl can sing.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I think I've found a new interest for the time being.

cooking yummy (somewhat healthy) food.

So far, I've compiled all of my parent's cookbooks, locating potential "to try" as N.F. Simpson would call them, recipes.(I've also found a lot via internet).

The list is oh so long.

And I'm kinda excited.

So excited in fact, that I'll probably post every recipe that makes it into mine (and Devin's) "favorite" pile.

And then I'm going to take those favorite recipes we enjoy so much and compile them into my own moleskin recipe book and call it something cheesy like "Cooking with Hillary", or "A taste of Hillary".

But mostly likely it will be called "Favs" or "Recipes".

Friday, November 5, 2010

TGIF, seriously.

Halloween (flashback five days ago) consisted of homemade white chicken chili (yum), yellow cupcakes with orange frosting, the cutest little monkey EVER, and the oh so, infamous banana dog.

(The monkey in action)


happiness (is) giant yellow leaf piles.

not so cool (is) Devin yet again working on a Friday night. (and this Saturday and Sunday night).

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

well for today...

happiness (is). good by, dear gas guzzler. Hello you. (or something along those lines).

not cool (is). wiping dirty butt cracks.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


After weeks of searching, applying, and interviewing

I landed a job.


I start this Monday.

Spike is his name (awesome name by the way)- The little boy I will be caring for.

Yes for ten hours a day, five days a week, totaling 50 hours of work per week.

By far the most I have ever worked in my life.

Did I mention he has colic?

Oh boy.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The last time I was at the zoo, my mom pushed me around in a stroller.

And I was probably afraid to go near the giraffes and billy goats.- I say this because when I was four, I was terrified of the "It's a Small World After All" ride at Disney World. It's all on video.

And I screamed the entire time. Nice.

Something about the dolls coming to life and taking over the boat or the fear of sharks in the water just waiting to bite (sharks?)- Who knows what went on in that four year-old head of mine.


18 years later, I find myself at the zoo again- The Riverbanks Zoo and Gardens in Columbia, SC.

And I even fed some goats.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

my week in pictures.

Laundry never ends!
Spent a few days home alone. (not particularly thrilled about that- see sad face, or maybe mad face? ha, but I got over it).

A delish Swedish apple pie awaits Devin's return home (thanks Tawny for the recipe!)
A trip to the farmer's market- of course.
Christmas on my mind.
Some good company- Henry being silly as always.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

there's a first time for everything.

My first time staining wooden furniture (ever).... 



Sunday, September 12, 2010

one thing's for sure

(well maybe a few...)

  • kraft macaroni and cheese is always better the second day.
  • i'm totally digging my new haircut (possibly the best cut I've ever had- pictures to come).
  • my love (and longing) for bull dogs is not just a phase- Devin, my dear

maybe one day.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


Today I am thankful for

  • a nice clean kitchen (in which I adore. I'll post some pictures of our place before we leave!)
  • church that now starts at 11 a.m.
  • the Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • and my husband, who just adores me to pieces (and I to him likewise.....ha if that makes any sense. you know what I mean).

    Saturday, September 4, 2010

    Visited the Raliegh Flea Market again...


    But this time around I had Devin accompany me to make sure I didn't go too crazy.

    Pressure Cooker- check
    Muffin pan- check
    Santa Christmas ornament- check
    A fresh assortment of produce- check

    all for under a whopping 30 dolla!

    Now it's time to go cook some fresh veggies in our brand new BLUE pressure cooker!

    Wednesday, September 1, 2010

    My life is complete.

    A recent discovery of mine while taking a gander through Cary......  TRADER JOES within 10 minutes from my house?!!

    This deserves it's own post.

    A-W-E-S-O-M-E :)

    I just love me some organic, made with 100% fruit, fruit leather.

    (I also snuggled with an adorable beagle puppy after our visit to TJ. I must admit, it was hard to say good-bye. I mean we are a little dog crazy right now).

    Oh just some thoughts.

    Wow, September already.... Where does the time go???

    Hm, to be honest I really don't know what to blog about sometimes (hence me not blogging for about a weeks time). My life right now consists of sleep, work, reading, shopping, and play. Not too exciting, right? 

    At least I'm not in school- I was in school STRAIGHT from the fall of 2007 until my graduation in June of this year. Crazy.

    Well, I'm really excited about starting two more jobs (thanks you have been a blessing in my life) on top of my current job.

    Housecleaning and pet sitting and babysitting consumes my days until we move (Devin put in our 30 day notice today).

    Let's see. Some highlights for the Carroll's this month:

    • Hopefully we'll make it to one of North Carolina's beaches before the weather becomes too cold.
    • Devin has a interview for USC SOM on the 22nd! I'm so excited/proud of him :)
    • Pretty much whatever we haven't done on the list of things to do before we leave will hopefully be accomplished before October.
    • In case you didn't know, Devin and I will have been married for 25 months on the 23rd ;) 
    • My brother Nathan will be 19 on the 15th- he's a freshman at BYU. Sniff, Utah.
    • And there's a slight chance that I could become pregnant this month since we can't afford birth control for the time being. (we shall wait and see).
    • Oh yea, and we're moving at the end of this month!!

    Peace for now :)

    Wednesday, August 25, 2010

    The weather was actually really nice today.

    Today was just another ordinary day.

    Cooking, cleaning, shopping (with store credit. Devin was even there to make sure I didn't go over!), reading, and laundry.

    Oh yes, laundry.

    While unloading the dryer I heard a faint "meow" in the background. I turned my head and saw


    perched in the linen closet.

    He's always full of surprises. One time he even managed to climb his way up to the top base of our kitchen cabinets. And they rest high I tell ya, high.

    Let's see. I've also found him on top of the highest shelf in our closet.

    And once in the dryer.

    The best part is when he tries to come down. Sometimes I help him out, but most of the time he finds his way on his own.

    mmm, rawr.

    Henry, you are a joy.

    (we're spooning as I write this).

    Saturday, August 21, 2010


    I am a shopaholic, coming from the mouth of my husband (in reference to me of course).

    Today I went to the Raleigh Flea Market (now I can cross this of my list, see previous post) and bought a McCoy 1940's pitcher and a little something for my nephew Parker (because his birthday was about a month ago and I have yet to send him something! Christa- you will be getting a package in the mail hopefully soon!).

    My problem is not so much throwing down a bunch of money on a single item because well, we don't have lots of money for me to do this even if I wanted to (blessing in disguise).

    My problem is this...I'm a sucker for a great deal. Two pair of St. John's Bay Kaki shorts at 13 dollars each? Okay!! (for Devin) And brand name shirts from J Crew and Gap for about 15 dollars, sounds good to me. (some of my more recent purchases).

    I feel the need to always buy, buy, buy. Maybe it's that fact that I'm completely BORED all the time but it's got to stop.

    My alternative ideas to shopping have failed me: walks in the park, boring after awhile and makes me wish we owned a dog (which is out of the question for right now and costs $$$). Crafts? Well you've seen my posts on that, still costs $$$.

    At least I have a part time job now that will keep me away from the malls for two days out of the week.

    I need to find something fun, exciting and most importantly FREE to fill up the rest of my days. Any suggestions?

    The pitcher from the flea market. At least I have fabulous taste.

    Friday, August 20, 2010

    "My wife, she's always making these lists." - Phil on Modern Family

    Oh, just a list of a few things I'd like to do before we leave North Carolina... (which is about six weeks away. yikes! where does the time go?) mostly so I won't forget!

    • Duke University. (I was there about a month ago when my Mom came to visit. Super hot weather + walking outside around campus/floral gardens= not so fun). Our total time spent there was a whopping twenty minutes (just a guesstimate). So, I think this place deserves another chance :)
    • Franklin Street in Chapel Hill. Vintage boutiques? I'm totally there.
    • Wilmington or Top Sail....I just love a beach that's only two hours away.
    • Crabtree Mall in Raleigh...because they just opened up a LEGO store!!
    • Downtown Apex and Cary
    • The Pit Resturant in seen on Man vs. Food
    • Artspace
    • NC Executive Mansion, St. Mary's School, & Spring Hill House....because it's free.
    • Raleigh Flea Market!! Home Decor at a fabulous price, AWSOME :)))
    • Time-Out eatery for their famous fried chicken and cheddar biscuit sandwich.
    And I would say the State Fair, but we'll be long gone by then.

    Oh well, I hope SC decides to have their fair in October. Because I'm so going!!!!!!

      Thursday, August 5, 2010


      Minus my painful and "splotchy" sunburn

      and being stung numerous times by jelly fish

      All in all, I'm happy Devin and I were able to take some time off and spend a few days with these guys:

      Tuesday, August 3, 2010

      C is for crab legs.

      Background to this post: Devin and I are on vacation with my family in OBX, NC. 

      Last night, Devin ordered a pound of steamed crab legs, and I ordered a pound of steamed spiced shrimp from Goombays Grill & Raw Bar (we're defiantly adding this place to our list of OBX favorites).

      I was a little hesitant at first to order a pound of food, but once the dish was in front of me I was thinking, "Yea, I got this."

      And I ate it all. Did I mention I love food?

      Because I do.

      Desert was delish as well. I was craving ice cream so we got ice cream (well, frozen custard to be exact). Randall found this local frozen custard parlor in King Devil Hills, so Devin and I, feeling a little full from dinner, decided to split a large chocolate frozen custard with rainbow sprinkles.

      It was the perfect ending to the perfect day.

      Thursday, July 29, 2010

      it's 11:04 p.m. and..

      I just love a good storm.

      Pouring down rain.

      Gigantic bolts of lightning followed by

      Deep thunder.

      And of course the sound of the wind blowing through the trees.

      Ah, heaven.

      Tuesday, July 27, 2010

      Henry is CRAZY.

      having cats is preparing me for kids! people laugh at this, but it's true. about three nights ago henry woke me up every hour it seemed like. this is unusual because when we go to bed, lucy and henry know not to bother us until the morning. they hop down and lucy sleeps in her cage or her pillow and henry sleeps in his cage. sometimes they will hop up on the bed and sleep on our pillows because i sleep at the very edge of mine, but they still don't bother us. but this night was bad. henry was pawing me and meowing so loudly non stop and licking the back of my neck (i think he knows this is super annoying). i threw him off every time and then realized that something was probably wrong. at about 4 in the morning i got up, checked the food bowl and sure enough, it was empty. i filled up the bowl and wasn't bothered the rest of the night.

      Monday, July 26, 2010


      South Carolina is where the majority of Sue Monk Kidd's novel The Secret Life of Bees takes place. I finished reading this last night- at 7:45 to be exact.

      The story was rich of Southern culture, summer romance, adventure, friendship, belonging, and hope- just enough to keep a gal entertained.

      I especially enjoyed reading about the Southern culture- particularly on the food.

      Smothered chicken, boiled peanuts, orangeade, corn fritters, butter beans, and for dessert, ice-cold Coca-Cola with salted peanuts- "We [Lily and I] like to pour our peanuts straight into the bottle. It's the perfect combination of salt and sweet in liquid." - August Boatwright.

      Mmmm, sounds delightful.

      Saturday, July 24, 2010

      I Heart NJ.

      Change and I have a weird relationship. And most of the time, I don't like it.

      The most recent change in our lives has been leaving Utah- permanently. We always knew that Utah would just be a temporary place, but I guess the saying it true "You never truly miss something until it's gone." (well, something like that).

      Maybe I don't miss Utah itself but what I do miss is- family, friends, not having to use a GPS 24/7, familiarity, the mountains, J-Dawgs, Brick Oven, Guru's, Los Hermanos, BYU ice cream and pulled pork sandwiches, and of course Cafe Rio (because Moe's just doesn't cut it).

      Towards the end, Devin was especially excited about leaving. All he kept saying was "I can't believe our time here is almost up. And the best part is we're never coming  back!" Even I found myself saying how much I can't wait to leave.

      But now I miss it. Sigh. And the saddest part of all is not knowing if or when we will ever be back.

      Ted Mosby on change (from the TV show How I Met Your Mother- I suggest watching this by the way)...."We're going to get older no matter what, so the question is whether we want to get on with our lives or desperately cling to the past..."

      Well I choose to desperately cling to the past.

      j/k :)

      Oh, and Happy Pioneer Day!

      Tuesday, July 20, 2010

      today was a great day...

      Devin came home with a flower pot and a bag full of blow pops. I was especially excited about the flower pot because of Devin's brilliant idea (and because it's something to paint).

      We just love our guacamole.

      Saturday, July 17, 2010

      i dislike Jabba the Hut.

      While my husband watches Star Wars, I'm going to share with you a recent creation of mine. I encourage you to make this when you have some time because well, it's awesome, time efficient, easy to make, and pretty dang good.

      Here's what you need:

      1 Oreo or graham cracker crust (we used Oreo)
      1 large box of vanilla pudding
      1 8oz container of cool whip
      2 squares of Baker's Semi-sweet chocolate
      2.5 cups of milk
      A handful or two of fresh blueberries

      And here's what to do:

      1. Prepare the pudding mix as directed on the box. Also, add about half the container of cool whip and whisk all of the ingredients together.
      2. Use about 3/4 cup of the remaining cool whip and combine this with the chocolate squares. Microwave on high in 15 second intervals until creamy.
      3. Mix the blueberries into the pudding mixture.
      4. Pour the pudding mixture into the crust, and finally, drizzle the chocolate over the pie.

      It's hard to drizzle. Enjoy :)

      B is for birthdays.

      Maybe this time around I won't have to make my own cake, wink :)

      Well, I'm glad I share this special month with these guys:

      then & now: All we know is that their birthday is sometime in July. For now, let's just say the 17th :) Happy 2 years!

      and Parker, Christa's little man who'll be turning 1 on 7/28! Can't wait to see you guys at the end of this month!

      Happy Birthday!

      Friday, July 16, 2010


      Project Two: Complete. I used the leftover fabric from the coffee table and added some lace for kicks.

      I'm happy because this means no more pain!!!

      So, if you have any project ideas that you'd be willing to share, then please do because like I've said, I have all the time in the world to do just about anything.

      Thursday, July 15, 2010

      If I had all the money in the world..

      Then yes, Mr. Israeli dude at the "It's All Natural" kiosk...I might consider spending $160 on facial cream and moisturizer.

      But you see, I'm a college grad that's unemployed.

      Yet some how you still manage to pester away.

      When a gal says "No, thank you", she means "Leave me alone."

      The end :)

      Wednesday, July 14, 2010

      I've got all the time in the world to do just about anything.

      So, I've decided to re-read Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. I want to re-familiarize myself with her story before the movie comes out August 11!!- because it's been at least a year since I've read the book.

      I told my mom about this book and she read it too. She said she loved it, and I'm sure you will too :)

      Happy Wednesday!!

      Tuesday, July 13, 2010

      A is for awsome.

      So, the next time you're down south, make sure to pick up some boiled peanuts.

      We found them at a produce market on the side of the road in South Carolina. But I'm sure grocery stores sell them as well. (well, at least that's what I've been told!)

      "Mmm, I love me some boiled peanuts."- Devin

      One time..

      (not to long ago 6/21) I lost my cat Lucy. Well, at least that's what I thought for a good forty-five minutes.

      But then I found her.

      She somehow managed to maneuver her way underneath our bedroom dresser.

      Silly kitty.

      Anywhos, here's a cool kitty fact: if a cat's head fits, then so will the rest of their body!

      So that explains it!

      crafty shmafty.

      Now that I am completely done with school, I have plenty of time to work on my creative side.

      Project Uno: The idea came from this book. It's a pretty rad book with all sorts of artsy fartsy ideas in them. (thanks Danna for letting me borrow it!)

      I don't have a before picture to share, but just imagine a coffee table with scratch marks and nail polish stains that smudged into the finish, and that's basically what I was working with.

      So here's what you do:

      1. Find a table that needs a new look.
      2. Pick out fabric of your choice.

      Here's a picture of the fabric that I picked out all by myself!!!!

      3. Purchase some Minwax Polycrylic Protective Clear Finish from your local Lowe's. (this will serve as the glue to intact the fabric onto the surface).
      4. Cut the fabric to fit the table. 
      5. Spread a thin amount of clear finish onto the surface, then lay down the fabric.
      6. Spread a generous amount of clear finish on top of the fabric.
      7. Repeat steps 5 & 6 until the whole table is covered in fabric.

      Now for the end result: A fabulous chic coffee table that everyone loves!!!

      Next Project!!! Homemade Heating Pad!

      Monday, July 12, 2010

      Weird Times.

      My husband is weird (I mean this in a good way) but then again so am I. The main purpose of this post is for our recollection; ya know, so one day when we're gray and old we can laugh at all the silly things we've said.

      "We should kill Lucy (Lucy is one of our cats) and implant her eyes into our child, so that our child can have pretty blue eyes like Lucy." - Devin

      Well, Lucy does have pretty eyes.

      "I want to have sex with this cake. I want to sew my butt shut it's so good." - Devin (referring to the awesome cake I made for the potluck dinner last night. Seriously, if you have some time then make this cake!)

      "Blah, blah, blah, something, something, something...I'm like 9 months pregnant."- Devin (I missed the first part of what he said).

      And don't worry, this post will be continually updated :)


      We spent fourth of July weekend down in Columbia, South Carolina with Devin's family. And while I was down there I got to practice some photography. Thanks Lauren for letting me shoot some pictures of your sweet baby boy! (and for sharing some helpful photo tips! I promise to never use the flash again unless necessary!).

      Enjoy the many facial expressions of baby Benjamin:

      Oh to be young.

      If I could travel back in time then I would probably be found here:

      rocking out to Queen's oh so many hits.

      Seriously Freddie Mercury (lead vocals), you amaze me.