7QT: puppies, videos, and hockey, oh my!

Friday, February 24, 2017

Linking up with Kelly today for 7QT!  It's been a while :) A handful of some really fun things have happened lately! 

1. We got the link to our wedding video preview!  We are absolutely in love with it and cannot wait to see the full video!

2. Let's keep the wedding train going!  We also got our missing wedding photos from our photographer that included my favorite photos of our families on the alter after the ceremony.

3. We are gaining an addition to the family...Donut the (berne)doodle will be making his (or her) grand debut to the Session home in about 3 weeks!  We still haven't gotten to pick him (or her) out so we are anxiously awaiting that email!

4. I finally read Nightingale by: Kristin Hannah and...oh my gosh. So many feelings. My friend Ashley had recommended the book to me in the past and after reading the summary online I was convinced I had read it before...whereas I really had just finished All the Light We Cannot See and The Girl You Left Behind.  Which have similar components.  Whether or not you like WWII fiction, I highly recommend it.  As long as you are also prepared to cry.

5.  Speaking of recommendations that make you cry, I know that there are only 2 episodes left of This Is Us season one BUT if you have not started watching...what a perfect time to catch up!  Especially since they were renewed for 2 more seasons so far.

6.  And a not so fun update...that norovirus is no joke.  I tested positive for strep over the weekend and then was hit with the brick (or many bricks) that is the norovirus on Tuesday night.  If I never  see another toilet or trashcan again...I'll be set.

7.  Last but not least, the next big thing coming up is Ryan getting to experience the second most important kiss of his life (according to him)...he gets to kiss the cup in Pittsburgh this weekend!  We are going to the winter classic game in Pittsburgh (if you are unfamiliar with hockey...it's an outdoor game)!  Here's a little throw back to us 3 years ago at my first NHL game (and another Pens winter classic)!

Have a great weekend!  LETS GO PENS!


Thoughts on Valentine's Day

Thursday, February 16, 2017

I just want to take a second to share my two cents on valentine's day.  I absolutely love the holiday and a huge part of that comes from growing up in a house that always went above and beyond to celebrate holidays.  What I don't love, is the pressure I put on myself and my husband on holidays and birthdays to make the day perfect.  And with that pressure, usually comes some sort of tears. Like a normal, healthy, emotional sound person.

Honesty hour.  Last year, Valentine's Day was incredibly hard.  Ryan and I were struggling to find a healthy balance of school/work/personal time.  I had just moved to Washington DC the month before and Ryan was halfway through his LLM program while completing an externship.  And I was incredibly depressed (but did not realize at the time how bad it was).  For some very unfortunate reason, that came to a head literally on the metro ride on the way to our dinner date to celebrate.  It was a real special one (yup).  And the icing on top of the cake was definitely the fact that while we heatedly talked on the metro platform, a mouse was enjoying a meal right next to us. 

So, this year, I just wanted to spend an evening celebrating our happiness.  In the past year, I have come to love where we live.  We have found the balance between work and home life.  (And neither of us our students...FINALLY).  We spoiled each other with treats during the day and had planned to go to our favorite local pizza place and a movie afterwards.  In true Ryan and Megan fashion, after a few champagne cocktails at dinner we decided to ditch the movie and lay in bed eating the cookie cake Ryan had sent that day and watch TV.  (Side note: while the cookie cake is a great idea in theory as opposed to flowers--if you have no control around food, do not ask your husband to send you one)!

My favorite part of the date was obviously every part because I am a big ball of cheese.  But, if I had to pick one moment, it was definitely when Ryan was reading my card.  A couple of weeks ago I bought him ice cream...and then ate it (see what I meant about self control?) and he was hilariously unhappy.  So in the card, I mentioned that I loved his patience when I did things like eat his ice cream...he then said that I still hadn't gotten him any as he read the card.  WELL total win for me.  The P.S. of the card read "check the freezer" and he couldn't believe it.  That was the moment he then told me that I "won" Valentine's Day.  (That is not what the holiday is about--but I was proud of myself for making him so incredibly happy).

Incredibly long story short, everyday of my life in the past 5 years has been about showing and sharing love with Ryan.  And I will always take advantage of a day to show just a little more love than normal.  And I am slowly working on reducing some of that holiday pressure.


Sunday Recipe: Honey Sriracha Chicken

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Hey guys! I thought if I titled this post something that sounded "weekly" I would maybe succeed in theme posts on certain days.  But, I am not hopeful so you shouldn't be either---anyways!  This past week I made Ryan's favorite recipe for dinner and thought it was a perfect opportunity to share the recipe with my readers (or in reality: I wanted to post this and in turn Ryan got to have his favorite dinner after I photographed it).  For some reason, I always tell myself this recipe is really daunting and difficult, but that's definitely only because I messed it up the first time I made it.  It is easy and delicious.  The flavor is amazing and it is such a nice alternative to ordering in chinese food and having an upset stomach for hours.

I found this recipe back when we still lived in Milwaukee somewhere on Pinterest, but can no longer find the link.  Other than this being Ryan's favorite, my favorite thing about this chicken is that once you buy all of the ingredients (and I'm sure you'll have most of them already) the only thing you need to restock to make it again is the chicken.
Honey Sriracha Chicken
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4 (or a very hungry Meg and Ryan)

3-4 diced chicken breasts
1/3 C cornstarch
1 C water
2-3 T sriracha
5 T soy sauce
1 T minced garlic
1/4 c sugar
2-3 T honey
2 T cornstarch
2 T cold water

In a medium saucepan, combine water, sriracha, soy sauce, garlic, sugar, and honey.  Stir.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Whisk together two tablespoons of cornstarch and remaining water until dissolved.  Add to saucepan and stir until thickened.  Reduce heat to low.

Add diced chicken and 1/3 cup of cornstarch to a large plastic bag.  Seal the bag and shake to coat chicken.  Drizzle a large pan with oil over medium heat.  Add chicken and saute until browned and chicken is cooked through.  Add sauce and stir to coat.  Sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes and serve over warm rice.



Sprinkling Emily

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

This past weekend, my mom and I sprinkled Emily with love and relaxation before baby #2 makes her debut next month.  My mom and I had so much fun putting the day together and pampering Em!  The hardest part of the spa weekend was obviously enjoying the relaxation activities as well :)  I can't believe that the next time I see my little sister, she will have a little girl!

And what is a weekend in Omaha without a couple solo shots with my favorite JohnMark!

Jobs, Careers, and Babies

When I met Ryan, I was a high school teacher and about a year in, I started grad school to become a school counselor.  The month before I joined Ryan in D.C. (December 2016), I graduated with my Masters in school counseling.  When I didn’t find a job in a school right away, I took a job as a full time nanny in hopes that I would be starting the next school year as a counselor. 

Ryan and I were not expecting to absolutely fall in love with the kiddos.  When I started, Kate and Cole were 3 months old (and now they are 17 month old big girls) .  They are fraternal twins full of spunk and when March rolled around and it was time to apply for jobs, Ryan and I decided together that maybe I would put off a school position until post-wedding.  The rationalization included everything except that we just love K and C way too much to give them up.  After the wedding, Ryan and I finally admitted it to each other that even though I love love loved my school counseling program and internships, we just can’t bear the thought of me not being K and C’s nanny. 

I could go on for hours about how much I love those girls (never ask Ryan to see a picture of “the nuggets” because he will not stop) and really have to those who I talk to regularly.  Being a full time nanny is such an interesting role.  I am incredibly lucky to work for such a wonderful family.  K and C’s parents are incredibly easy to work for and refer to me as Aunt Megan (and post wedding Ryan got the title of Uncle Ryan). 

Ryan and I feel like they are our whole world and it makes me so excited for what’s to come in our future as our family grows.  There is no doubt in my mind that Ryan and I will love our children so much our hearts might burst.  The final decision job-wise has essentially come to the fact that I will continue to be Kate and Cole’s nanny for as long as they’ll have me or until Ryan and I have our first baby…whichever comes first! 

School counseling is still such a big part of who I am and the tools and skills that I learned and developed have had such a positive impact on all of my personal, emotional, and professional relationships.  I would love to get back into the field one day, but for right now I get to keep having the surprising job of my dreams spending 45 hours a week with my two favorite toddler BFFs.


12 Months of Goals

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Hey guys!  Definitely already failed on my weekly Thursday posts...but this past weekend my parents came in town to celebrate my birthday and we were a little busy!  It was so much fun hosting them and finally getting to spend my birthday with them for the first time in 10 years.

Anyways, I wanted to finally put my 2017 goals aka resolutions into words especially since they're still going strong on Februaury 1st  (that's definitely a record for me).  This year, I wanted to set one large attainable goal.  In years past, I have set a bunch of small goals and by this time in February they were typically forgotten about.  And for 2016, I wanted to do things like become much more consistent in going to mass every Sunday, journal more, read a lot, and work out steadily.  Slowly over the course of 2016, all of those items fell into place(ish). 

So, I started January feeling incredibly enthusiastic about...running 12 5Ks in 2017!  I decided that I would run a 5K a month based on some facebook friend inspiration that had done the same in 2016.  I had run/walked two 5Ks this past year with my friend Becky, so I knew I was capable.  I figured this was an attainable goal and that if I had to pay to sign up, I wouldn't back out!  I started off strong in January and ran the entire thing, which for me, was a big accomplishment in itself.  My next 5K is on February 12th and I am getting ready to hopefully improve my time from January.  To stay motivated, I signed up for a February, March, and April race immediately after my January race.  So, here we go!  Bring it on 2017! 

The best part of all, is look at my biggest cheerleader behind me!  I am the luckiest.  My favorite picture is by far the man in front of me crossing the finish line and Ryan cheering me on as I came around the final corner!

Happy Friday, everybody!

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