Hillsborough River State Park Picnic

Today I had a wonderful Sunday off. I didn’t make any plans, I slept in (until 10:00, wow) I rolled out of bed leisurely and lounged around for a bit drinking coffee and enjoying my morning. Then I thought it would be fun to go hiking and have a picnic at Hillsborough River State Park. We had a blast and ended up hiking about 5 miles. I’ll count that as a workout.

Lunch was a chicken sandwich on whole wheat bun, tomato, cucumber, and onion salad with balsamic vinegar and olive oil , and pineapple:

We saw an alligator:

And 4 baby armadillos, so cute:

There were lots of people there cooking out which made us so hungry for cookout food. We are so impressionable. So we stopped at Publix and picked up the necessary supplies for chicken burgers, corn on the cob, and baked beans (so good to dip your chips in):

Now my belly is full. It’s time for a hot bubble bath and some snuggle time. Good nite 🙂

Extraordinary Love

Not sure where to begin!! First and foremost, I celebrated my 1 year anniversary with Matt. AKA…Sweet Man. We celebrated by re-creating our first date. We drove separately and met at Starbucks. I wanted to re-create it perfectly, so I arrived there first and asked the nice young man sitting in the seat I was originally in if he would let me have his seat. Soooo embarrassing but so worth it.

Matt walked through the door and over to my table and dolphins filled my belly, just like a year ago. It was so sweet. I made him some cinnamon donut muffins (just like last year).

We talked so long on that first date, that we talked right through dinner. By the time we realized how hungry we were, the only place open was Applebees. So for dinner, it was 2 for 1 chardonnay at your neighborhood bar and grill food.
We split the wonton chicken tacos:

I got the weight watchers jalapeno lime shrimp:

Honey got the chicken strips:

He got me a beautiful hand crafted glass heart art piece and I love it: (Look at the tv, weird)

Happy days 🙂 I can’t believe how fast a year went. You know how when God closes one door He opens another. What you may not know is that other door is amazing beyond what you hoped for. I love you honey!!!!!

On another amazing note. We had another weekend of beautiful weddings at Cross Creek Ranch.

Friday’s wedding was an intimate affair of 36 people:

Saturday’s wedding was much bigger. 185 guests. It was very involved and labor intensive to set up, but turned out absolutely beautiful.

All I can say is Holy Smokes!!! I made it this far. It’s winding down time, only 3 more weekends left, one wedding each weekend. WoW!

I’m not sure how I found the energy to make a delicious healthy dinner. I think cooking actually helps me unwind and de stress. I came in straight from work and started prepping dinner, washing lettuce and veggies, thawing and marinating chicken, and assembling my potatoes au gratin… All before taking my shower and pouring a glass of wine.

Delicious salad made with artisan greens from Aldi (my new obsession), and beautiful fresh tomatoes from Parkesdale.

Chicken marinated in Italian dressing and baked at 350 for 30 minutes. And potatoes, sliced thinly, covered with skim milk that has been mixed with flour, nutmeg salt and pepper, sprinkled with cheese, covered in panko breadcrumbs, sprayed with butter flavored nonstick spray and baked at 350 for 50 minutes.

And to top off an amazing day. Honey and I strolled down to the mailbox and found an extraordinary surprise. I won a $100 Publix gift card from their Publix Italian Days sweepstakes that I entered online. Woohoo!!!!

Oh, and we went to the playground to swing on the swings. Did I mention I have tomorrow off. A Sunday! Oh boy! I’m a happy girl!