Tag! You're It Christmas Style

Who is up for a little Christmas Fun? 
Thanks so much to Lanaya at Raising Reagan for including me in this fun "Tag" themed post.

The fun started over at Raising Reagan, where Lanaya answered 5 Christmas themed questions and "tagged" five other bloggers to do the same, and then on and on until we're all in the Christmas Spirit! 


Check out the bottom of this post and find some of my FAVORITE bloggers that I tagged!!

TagChristmas


1. What makes Christmas such a special holiday for you and your family?
I think as a young family, it's so exciting to start our own traditions. Every year, it works out that we are home, just the four of us, on Christmas Day. So we've started making a special breakfast and just hanging out at home together. 
2. Were you told the truth about Santa Claus by your parents or did you find out another way? And..do you plan on lying to your kids (if you have them or plan on having them)? Oh yes…I went there. :)
I don't remember specifically finding out but I do remember finding wrapped presents in my mom's closet and I knew something was suspicious because there was a heart about the i in "Jenni" and my mom was the only person I knew who wrote my name that way. 

I don't know if I'd call it "lying..." We more or less use the story of Santa Claus and the nice or naughty list to get our kids to behave and go to bed nicely! LOL ok, maybe it IS lying! 

We also use "Elf on the Shelf" to our advantages as well! 
3. Real tree or Fake tree?
Fake with the lights already but on it. Convenience is key, people! 
4. Do you open presents on Christmas morning, Christmas Eve or both?
We open presents with our kids on Christmas morning. 
5. What is your favorite Christmas movie to watch? Favorite Christmas song to sing or listen to? ( I know…technically two questions)
My favorite Christmas movie has to be Christmas Vacation (shitter's full!) or Love Actually, which is technically more a romance than a holiday movie but dang it, I think it counts. And as for song, I LOVE All I Want For Christmas Is You, because for some wierd reason, I am a sucker for pop renditions of Christmas Songs. I also like Santa Claus Is Coming To Town because the words are simple enough for me to remember them! 
Man now that I've talked about Christmas,  I am really in the mood! 
Today so far I've gotten R2's gifts all purchased, plus my mother's gifts too!
Now if I could just figure out what to get Big R! I am stumped!

What are you getting your husbands? I need some ideas!


For the next round of  You're It, I am tagging these bloggers: 


Mallory @ From California To Kansas


Jess @ Tooth N Nails


Kaylee @ All Things Bright And Beautiful

Allie @ The Little Mouse's House


Cassie @ Take Two 


Hopefully these ladies pass on the fun! 

Book Trailers Galore

There isn't anything in the entertainment category that I love more than reading. 
Give me a blanket, a comfy couch, silence and book and I am good.

Granted, if my house is totally silent, there must have been an apocalypse, but still.

Getting off track here but I have a little funeral for nap time. I think it's time I finally come to the realization that my kids will no longer nap in the afternoons. Major Sad Face.

Ok, so back to my happy place. Reading.
But you know the next best thing?
Movies. And even better, movie trailers. I love them.



Anyhooters, so imagine my utter glee a couple weeks ago when I discovered that  they make movie like trailers for BOOKS.

It's like my too favorite things got together and made a love child and then cuddled afterwards.

So here are some book trailers from the books that are on my Good Reads Shelf

The Diviners by Libba Bray
 (which I've already read but the trailer is really cool so I wanted to share again) 

 The Changling, by Philippa Gregory




My Dear I Wanted To Tell You, By Lousia Young



Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson



Have you seen any book trailers that led you to read a book?

Do you know of any sites that have a lot of trailers? I Googled the crap out of them and can't find many. Post in the comments if you've seen some! 

StoryPeople Love

Just checking to see if there is anyone else out there who is as in love with 

I found the books in the University of Nebraska Lincoln bookstore in 2004 and have been love with the poems ever since.

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I have several books and prints and the calendar.
There are tons of sentimental poems for everything you can think of so they make the perfect Christmas gift! 

I may or may not have an exciting give a way planned if in fact there are other Story People lovers out there like me! 

Comment if you've heard of them! 
:) 

Owl Mugs, Christmas Decor and Randomness

Seriously, this has been the longest/shortest weekend ever! 

Getting back into the real world after such a long time off work (4 days seems like a year), it will feel weird to put on a real bra and see my face with make up! 
Can you tell I really live it up over the holiday? :)

I decorated the inside of the house for Christmas and the whole fam damily went shopping on Saturday, where I picked up that cute little owl mug at Pier One Imports. 



I have a great book review about The Healer's Apprentice to do too! I just haven't gotten around to it. 

But for now, I am reading The Fault of Their Stars by John Green.
Have you read it? What did you think? 
The Fault in Our Stars

Also I am listening to The Night Circus on audiobook and finding it a little hard to get into. Have you read it, does it get better than the first couple chapters? Maybe it's the old man's voice I can't connect with...
The Night Circus
It's Sunday night, which means FOOTBALL in our house but if Big R weren't here, you can bet your bottom dollar (don't be on me though seriously go buy a Powerball ticket, that jackpot is cray cray!)  I'd be watching the TV train wrecks that are 

Extreme Cougar Wives on TLC 
&
Catfish on MTV

Because crazy people are FUNNY.

One more thing, keep your eyes peeled next week for a really fun, uplifting link up with my Blog BFFs, Jess @ ToothNNails and Mallory @ From California to Kansas
 It's going to be really fun. If you want a hint, go here)

Sunday Social


I have lots of books to talk a bout and a lot of cute purchases from the weekend I want to share with you, but it's the down hill slide from a long holiday weekend, my house is in shambles due to Christmas decorating and I really don't want to think too much.
So that's why I am so stoked it's time from a Sunday Social!


Oh yes, and I just now noticed that my header has disappeared  I have no idea what happened but my girl Whitney at I Wore Yoga Pants (AKA blog design extraordinaire) will hopefully come to my rescue once again on Monday and get me all fixed up.


1. Name 4 jobs you’ve had in your life.
I baby sat ALOT, and mostly worked in the food industry. I tried waitressing and was HORRIBLE at it, so I stuck to fast food. I know the secret to a great onion ring, thanks to Runza and I can still make the curly-q at the top of a Dairy Queen ice cream cone :) My first grown up job was at a newspaper, which I really loved!


2. Name 4 movies you would watch over and over. Love Actually, Serendipity, Never Been Kissed and Mona Lisa Smile

3. Name 4 places you have lived. I've stayed pretty much in a centralized locations but the main places are Kearney Nebraska, Lincoln Nebraska, Nebraska City, Nebraska and Rock Port, Missouri


4. Name 4 of your favorite foods. Ketchup, Chips and salsa, Hawaiian style pizza & seafood,


5. Name 4 things you always carry with you. My phone, a planner, and Chapstick. Oh, and the tiny inner feeling that I am loved :)

6. Name 4 places you have been on vacation. New York, Yellowstone National Park and Florida. I am boring, I know but hope to get a lot more under my belt in the future!

My BBFF's back!

Good morning! 
Can you believe I am crazy enough that I am already home from Black Friday shopping? Man, there's nothing like  camping out in a tent in the 30 degree weather outside the WallyWorld.

KIDDING.

That would be my hell. 

I am however, taking advantage of some online sales, so there's that. Try getting me off my comfy couch the day after Thanksgiving, just try me. 

Today, I've got a treat for you. My blog BFF is back. And you know what's so great about Mallory? She's just about the funniest person because just when you think she's totally normal...BAM she throws you a curve ball.  And I mean that in the nicest way. I love her spontaneity. Like this post. Just when you think you're going to read ANOTHER Thanksgiving post, here comes Mallory.  So here she is. Oh and since I know after you read it, you'll be wondering if she can be YOUR new blog BFF, the answer is no, she's already taken ;)

Why hello That's What She Read readers! 

This is me and my girl, Deuce. I know. She's adorbs.

Y'all know me. 
In case you don't...
I'm Mallory and I blog over at From California To Kansas

Apparently Jen is busy this week(mmhmmmm...sure she is)

So she's called upon me to entertain you.

I'm sowwrry.

I don't have delicious recipe for you.
Or a really wonderful book to read.
Or even a oh-my-gosh-this-is-so-easy-craft.

What do I have, you ask?

Just my everyday whit, brains, and brawn.

Ahem...

So, if you didn't already know, I'm from California. I did live in a part of California that gets cold, has snow(even though it only lasts for a day or so), but yes, it is sunny a lot of the time, and if I ever got tired of the cold, I just drove 30 minutes south. 

Now that we've cleared the Thanksgiving Hurdle, we're in range of Christmas! Or Hanukkah. 

Outside those holidays...I can officially start wishing for snow without getting the evil eye.

Like this:




Be still my heart, how sweet does that little pup look?



Let me just clarify, lest you think I'm insane for wishing for snow(my co-workers think I'm crazy)

1. I want snow, but I want to be inside for it. With a book and some hot cocoa. 
2. I love how still and quiet it is when it snows, but I'm certainly not taking a walk outside to    enjoy that.
3. And I do not want to have to drive on icy roads the next day(or days)
4. All I want is 6+ inches on a Thursday or Friday, to get me a 3 or 4 day weekend, and I'll be perfectly happy.


Ok Jen. Unbusy yourself already.

Your poor readers.

And if any of y'all are still reading, come visit me at From California To Kansas
to say hello!






My Thanksgiving Must Haves

Happy Almost Turkey Day, ya'll! I wanted to share with you some of the things that make my heart go pitter patter when it's turkey day. Or, as R1 calls it, "The Feast". He seriously asked me yesterday which of his grandmas were coming to "the feast." That's a good way to put it though when you think about it.

So, if you were to invite me to your Thanksgiving Feast and asked me to bring my favorites, here is what I would bring: 

Sweet Potato Bake

And yes it's a Paula Deen recipe, so you know what the means.

It's a smooth, VERY rich sweet potato puree with a crunchy, candied pecan crumble topping. I KNOW. 
It's gotta be good. 



This pie became near and dear to my heart last year when I made it for the first time. Not just made this recipe for the first time, but the first pecan pie AND the first Thanksgiving dinner I had ever made. Last year we had plans to go to my sister's in KC for the day but that week every.single. one of us got sick. Both kids were sick with respiratory problems and fevers and Big R and I both got strep throat. I knew we weren't going anywhere so I set out to make my first Thanksgiving dinner. I made a traditional feast and finished it off with this recipe and it was a huge hit! I was kinda proud of myself, coming the Thanksgiving rescue, sick and all! 

And here's a not so traditional recipe that was a staple at my grandma's house while I was growing up. It's a totally random thing but I still love it to this day and even included it in my feast last year.

I present to you: Cheez Whiz and Celery. 


Try it and then come back and tell me how much you love me for showing you.
Unless you've already tried it and loved it, because then we can be best friends.

And since we are on the topic of crazy good EASY food in a container, here's my last but not least favorite food I will eat tomorrow:
Put this on a hot homemade roll and call me later when I wake up from my food coma. Why do I love this over a homemade version? I have no idea. I don't ask questions, I just eat it. 


What are your Turkey Day must haves?!

Oh, and one more thing! Go check out the ever so clever Thankful Series Mallory at From California to Kansas, Colby, Amanda and I are hosting this week! You can read about our family traditions, what we are thankful for and our favorite Thanksgiving recipes PLUS it's a link up! So share with us!

From California To Kansas

Literary Junkies

By the Porchlight


Today I am linking up with my fellow bookworms Lesley and Taylor
Lesley's By the Porchlight was one of the very first blogs I found when I first began looking through Blogger. She posted about her book club and I said to myself "hey I have one of those!" and that's really the reason I started my blog. When I saw her post, my mind began reeling over how I could write about my book club, and then about other books that I was reading, and then poof, "That's What She Read" was born. So if you enjoy this blog, go over to By The Porchlight and say thanks :). Taylor is great too, I met her through Lesley and it was pretty much like meeting my book twin. So you can imagine my excitement when these two wonderful ladies decided to do a monthly book junkies link up! Needless to say I was all over it!
So here's the first official link up post for Literary Junkies!  It's a great way to find other bookworms and ways to talk about what you're reading!

1) What book are you currently reading? Give us a little synopsis and your review.
Right now I am reading  The Healer's Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson


The Healer's Apprentice
It's the story of a  girl in the 1300s. Here's a quick summary from Goodreads:
When Lord Hamlin, the future duke, is injured, it is Rose who must tend to him. As she works to heal his wound, she begins to understand emotions she's never felt before and wonders if he feels the same. But falling in love is forbidden, as Lord Hamlin is betrothed to a mysterious young woman in hiding. As Rose's life spins toward confusion, she must take the first steps on a journey to discover her own destiny.

I am loving it so far. I read over half the book on Sunday. (We had lots of time in the car). I am fascinated with stories about this era. The caste system, the hierarchy of families and even the way they dressed is interesting to me. 
I am also listening to "The Night Circus" by Erin Morganstern for the Literary Junkies Book Club!


2) What are your 3 favourite books of all time?

Gosh where do I start?  I am just going to list them because if I start rambling about why I love them so much, this will be the longest post ever.
( Check out my GoodReads "All Time Favorites Shelf!")

  1. P.S. I Love You
  2. Love In The Time Of Cholera 
  3. Gone Girl

3. What is your "approach" upon entering a bookstore? Where do you immediately head after entering through the front door?

I immediately head to my library's "New & Noteworth" shelf. They keep all the new releases and contemporary novels there. Next to that is the new non-fiction reads, which are my other favorite. I usually have a list in mind but sometimes I just like to stand in front of that shelf and "judge books by their cover" and pick up what I like. I also read the inside cover. I am kind of picky and there are some issues/problems that will make me put the book back down (mean dads, sick children) immediately.  But other than that, I am open to reading about anything. Settings/places that I am not familiar with always intrigue me! I am also drawn to period pieces, especially the 19th century and the late 1800s! Given time and no other responsibilities, I could spend an entire day in a bookstore (one with a coffee shop preferably :)


What are you reading?

My Fellow Wine Ho's Guest Posto

Hey Fraaaannnnds! With this crazy busy week coming up, I have enlisted the help of some of my best wine hoes to keep the fun coming on this here corner of bloggy world.
 
I couldn't think of a better way to entertain you than to talk about wine,
so here's my gal pal and frequent fellow #wineywednesday tweeter,
Amanda @ A Beautiful Mess!
 
Hello fellow and dear readers of That's What She Read! I am so so so excited that Jen asked me to write a guest post for her! Jen and I are always interacting on Twitter... making up days such as, #winesunday and #toastytuesday. I take that back, we didn't make those up... they exsist in everyone's real life, right?
Let me start by tell you a little about myself, my name is Amanda and I am Oregon native who has transplanted (thanks to my Coastie husband, who's pretty awesome by the way) to Florida. I blog at a beautiful mess. A year and 4 months later, I am STILL adjusting to the Florida weather. I miss my boots and scarves, oh yeah and there is a thing called seasons in Oregon, Florida didn't get the memo apparently! I love running, yoga, wine, reading, wine, blogging, and of course, wine! Cheap wine, I'm not picky. If anyone wants to send some my way.
Speaking of wine, the point of this post is to teach you a couple things about wine, because I am an expert (not).
1. Tasting wine essentially means smelling, therefore women are better at tasting it (and drinking it, if I do say so myself) because it has been medically proven that women have a better sense of smell (this is probably why boys are more stinky!) ....my Journalism Professors would be ashamed to know that I didn't site that fact.
2. Do you know which states have the highest consumption of wine? California, New York, and you guessed it, FLORIDA. I am SURE that it's all because of me. 100% positive. Where are the New York and Cali wine drinkers at?
3. Which fruit crop do you think grows on the most acres world wide? Apples, grapes or pears? GRAPES! Duh. You probably guessed that considering this is a post about wine. Or ya'll are also very knowledgable about wine, like me (and know how to use Google).
4. Roman woman were not allowed to drink wine (say whaaaa?). I believe their husbands could kill them if they were caught drinking it or divorce them. Thank the lawwwd for 2012!
5. And for the grand finale... according to this site, women who drink two glasses of wine a day are more active in the bedroom (if you know what I mean...)
Thanks, Jen for having me!! Cheers to all of you!
I'm out.

Look, Ma, no sweats!

You know what the best thing about Saturdays is?
Not wearing a bra.   Having no obligations whatsoever.
Today, I don't even have to leave the house if I don't want to!

So this morning I decided I wanted to share the wonderful things that being a blogger has done for m fashion sense.

Besides meeting new people and enhancing my need for Starbucks, blogging has turned me into someone who appreciates fashion.

I usually dressed in comfy sweat pants or jeans with and a hoodie sweatshirt. I wear tennis shoes and whatever jeans weren't wrinkled.

But thanks to reading and seeing all of the fashion and adorable outfits via bathroom pics of other bloggers, I actually wore something cute to our local high school's semi final play off game last night:






Football Game Gear



I even had jewelry on! Both of these pieces were found thanks to the bloggy world.
The necklace that I saw and knew immediately I had to have is from 

The K.O. Jewelry

And the earrings I found through a giveaway. They're made by Flightless Bird Designs on Etsy

See?? Isn't that much better than jeans and a hoodie?
But by no means is there anything wrong with jeans and a sweatshirt.
I LIVE by them.
But now, I am seeing jeans and comfy clothes in a new light.
 
Here's R2 and I at the game. You totally can't see my outfit but look how cute she R2 looks :)
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What's your favorite casual outfit? Leave some links to your fashion posts or Pinterest boards so I can get more inspirations! I need all the help I can get!  

4 things list for Kids' Christmas Gifts

Awhile ago, I saw a sign on Pinterest that was a simple guide to buying your kids' Christmas Gifts:

Something They Want
Something They Need
Something They Wear
Something They Read

I think it's a really great guide. We hope to not get too carried away with gifts this year so this is easy and practical to follow. The kids have lots of grandparents, great grandparents, aunts and uncles, so they will help fill in I am sure!

So here's what I am thinking for Reese. I am going to have to narrow down what she wants from a list that looks something like this:


Reese's Toys


And she is getting a big girl room soon so she'll need new bedding! This is way out of the price range I would spend, but I want something similiar. 

Graphic Patch Quilt & Sham

And on to my favorite part: CLOTHES!
Reese's wardrobe is better, bigger and more coordinated than mine.
I found all of these cute pieces at Old Navy!


Reese's Christmas Wishlist


And something to read. I would love a book like this we could read a little bit out of every night. We SO need a new book to read before bedtime. I don't even have to look at the words of "Goodnight Moon" anymore. I've got that stuff memorized! 







Ryder's Loot: 
He's pretty easy to buy for. There are a lot of fun toys out there for 5 year old boys. He'd be happy with any of these. The one I like the best is the Creationary from Lego. It's a board game almost like Pictionary but instead you use Legos to create what's on the card and get your team to guess what you made! I think we would all have fun with this game!


RYder's christmas list


For Something He Needs, this is Big R's department and rumor has it Big R thinks it's time to get R1 a gun. I am not sure what kind, but it'll be a very simple, low caliber, youth gun that they can begin target shooting with in anticipation of R1 being old enough for youth deer and turkey season next year. And apparently, in the world of AVID hunters, this classifies as R1's NEED this year. 

Something To Wear: How cute are these clothes?! Also from Old Navy: 

Ryder's Christmas Wishlist

There's nothing more R1 loves to do than settle on the living room floor with a huge Where's Waldo book.Our favorite part is to find all the funny, crazy things that are listed in the back of the book! 


So there's my picks for the kids' Christmas goodies! 


What are you getting your little ones this Christmas?



Corn ships aren't just what feet smell like


Well that's the oddest post title I will probably ever have




I am not even going to try and explain how the above picture 
seems so gross but at the same time
is so stinkin' delicious.

It's a picture of a contradiction.
Smelly corn chips combined with peanut butter?
Seems like something the Duck Dynasty guys would whip up to put in 
mouse trap.

Alas, it's delicious.
I had never seen nor heard of this interesting combo until
I saw it at a potluck at work. 

I also witnessed someone replace with apples in an apple pie 
with GREEN TOMATOES.

And that tastes about just like it sounds.
*shudders*

But I will try anything once
Oh wait,  no I won't.
Once someone brought hot dogs in spaghetti and I opted out.

Ok so I saw the peanut butter goodness on the Fritos and couldn't stop starring at this odd little pairing and gave it ago.

And it's pppppreeettyy much amazing.
I have no idea why.

So here you go, the recipes for the best hits-the-spot, great-for-last-minute snack EVA: 


1 cup white corn syrup
1 cup white sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 10.5 ounce bag Fritos
2 handfuls of M&Ms or chocolate chips

Pour out the Fritos on a large shallow pan lined with wax paper or foil. Combine the corn syrup and sugar and bring to a boil. I melt them in the microwave in my Pampered Chef glass batter bowl and it works perfect.- usually takes about 6-8 minutes for the sugar to be dissolved and you're set!)or the stovetop works great too. (spray the pot with Pam). Then stir in the peanut butter til smooth. Pour the mixture over the chips, sprinkle with M&Ms or chips, and chill for about 30-60 minutes. 

You can thank me later, wink.


Book Swap

If case you haven't notice, I like to reeeeadddddd.

So can you guess my expression when I saw a book swap over at

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I got paired up with this awesome gal:


Erinn at It's The Journey.

Her blog is so peaceful. Maybe it's the color scheme or the way she writes so fluently. It just makes me want to curl up on the couch and stalk her.

We emailed back and forth and I told her about how I had always wanted to read Wicked but had never gotten around to it and how I enjoy historical fiction. Erinn did a great job when she picked out these goodies for me: 

Juliet by Anne Fortier 
and Mirror Mirror by Gregory Maguire (The author of Wicked)

And how cute is the card? I might just frame him, he's so cute! 

I am so happy and thankful for these books, so thank you Erinn!

I also have to tell you about the cool thing that happened when it came to picking a book for Erinn. I know this is totally random but I promise, it really happened.

At work, there is a little employee locker room and people leave stuff for the taking on this little table. Someone is always leaving books. Mostly, they are old dusty war time hardbacks, so when I saw a couple books that looked like they were brand new, with contempory looking covers, I grabbed them. I didn't look at the titles or anything. Free books are free books emiright? 

So then THAT DAY I get an email from Erinn telling about her book preferences, what's she is reading now, what she wants to read, etc. And I read this: 

"I'm almost done with the first book in the A Song of Fire and Ice Series
 (Game of Thrones) and I really want to get to the second book of the Millennium series."

And I happened to look at the two books that I just grabbed in the employee room. And guess what book was on top?


The second book, just like Erinn wanted! 

It was fate. I couldn't believe it! 

So that's what I gave her, along with a handmade bookmark. 

Hope she liked it!

Thanks again Erinn and Jessica for a great swap!