Scraps of Life

Life As a Scrapbooking Newlywed

New Year Shenanigans

It’s my first post about what’s actually going on in our life for 2013. I am quite enjoying the prompts though.

Since this is “Scraps of Life”, it seems only appropriate to mention I’m almost finished with the honeymoon scrapbook. After I finish I’ll pick my favorite pages and make a post about them. It’s only been 7 months today since the wedding, it’s all good.

Anywho, we rang in the new year in our usual fashion of getting all dressed up and going to O’Charley’s then back to my aunt and uncle’s house for board games and movies. It wound up being only Matt and I with my brother and cousin playing Pictionary until around 11:30 when everyone else showed up from their pub crawl. Good times, good times.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

On New Years Day we met Matt’s parents at the Levee for lunch and the two of us went to see two movies, Les Mis and This is 40. I absolutely loved Les Mis and found the voices to mostly be absolutely wonderful. I won’t get too crazy in depth but the only one I wasn’t 100% loving was Amanda Seyfried. Anna Hathaway and Hugh Jackman’s performances made me cry. So very well done. This Is 40 was okay. I enjoyed it but it just seemed to be lacking something and I wished they would have turned over a new leaf way earlier in the movie.

We’ve been to two NKU basketball games and a Cyclones hockey game already this year. Norse women won and the men lost even though they really should have won. Cyclones lost too. Our games attended 2013 record needs to improve!

I have set my book goal for 50 books read in 2013 (again). Let’s hope I can get more than 32 books this year!

2013 is looking goooooood!

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Adventures in Baking

Today was a momentous occasion in the life of Jess. To understand this, you must know that I avoided all things cooking and baking growing up like the plague. I haven’t used most major kitchen appliances besides the oven, stove, microwave and the toaster. The only cookies I’ve baked up until today were the idiot-proof pre-cut cookies at Christmas and Valentines Day. Today, I took on this recipe for Jell-O cookies I found on Pinterest:

Jello cookies

jello cookies

  • Yield: 2 dozen
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Ready In: 30 mins


  • 3.5 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1.5 cups salted butter softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 (3 oz) pkg jello You can use any flavors you want (I’ve been using 2 packets and still had some leftover)


  1. Beat butter in large bowl with mixer until creamy. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Blend in egg and vanilla. Mix flour and baking powder in a separate bowl. Gradually beat in flour mixture.
  2. Divide dough into 4 sections. Sprinkle 2 Tb of jello onto each section. Knead together with dough. You may want to add a few drops of food coloring to make the dough more vibrant.
  3. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in the extra jello from the packets. Place, 2 inches apart, on baking sheets. Flatten with bottom of bowl.
  4. Bake 8 to 10 min at 350 on lined baking sheets. Cool on baking sheets 2 min. Remove to wire racks and cool completely.

Credit to

Once I got past being afraid of the mixer (have your laugh, go ahead), everything else went smoothly and it was super fun. Next time, I know I’m going to make them smaller and not put nearly as much Jell-O  on the 1-inch balls. These are super sugary – but delicious. I chose strawberry, berry blue and lemon to use. Strawberry is one of my favorites so I actually used that for 2 of the sections instead of one.

I’d consider them a success as Matt has already eaten one of each and I’ve had a strawberry. He declared the strawberry his favorite. Here are my beautiful cookies!

Other than that, we only left the house to get a few things from the store and go to Hot Heads. It was one of the best Saturdays ever. I also scrapbooked a little more of our honeymoon album. I’m in to the Hollywood Studios portion of our honeymoon and so glad to be back into scrappin’!!

Last night we went out to Larosa’s and a movie with Matt’s parents. I was never really into the Bourne series because it confused me but this one was really good. Matt even said that it answered some questions on how Jason is able to do all of the things he can do. Now I want to watch the others again. My brother would be proud. One thing that I did call them out immediately on was her fake passport photo. She was wearing her glasses. I have glasses and I can tell you for a fact they don’t allow you to wear them in the pictures for passports. Boom. Caught.

After the movie, we went to back to their house to see Max and Matt’s dad told me that besides the people who live there, Max has warmed up to me the most. 🙂 He’s so adorable!! He looks like grandma’s old dog Pebbles and last night, as weird as this sounds, he even smelled like him.

Tomorrow we’re taking Matt’s sister, her husband and our niece to her first Reds game. It’s a Cardinals one and whoever wins this one *cough*us*cough* wins the series. She’ll get a first game certificate and a Gapper cup (that they only give to kids…jerks). We even got seats in the shade for her. Heres to hoping she’ll enjoy it!

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Weekend in Columbus

Matt and I went to Columbus for the weekend, originally with tickets for the Crew game until they postponed it due to a death of a teammate. I’m proud of the team’s administration for allowing them to have the day off to attend the funeral of their teammate.

All of the depressing news out of the way, we had our hotel room booked already so we dug up some other things to do on Friday and had a blast over the weekend. I rode the bus out to Matt’s office after work and we left immediately from there. We stopped at Cracker Barrel on the way down there and used a gift card from one of my wedding showers (woot woot!). Matt even bought me a small singing Christmas penguin. 🙂

Saturday we slept in a little bit then went to the Ohio History Museum complete with an outdoor village filled with people  all in character. One of the guys was particularly into his part and once he found out we were from Kentucky, he had to ask if we had any slaves and what our view on them was. He was happy to hear we were against slavery and went on a rant about how they just never know what Kentucky is up to. As another little perk, and somewhat depressing reminder, it was also educators day which means there were several booths set up with interactive lessons. My favorite building by far was the schoolhouse. It was adorable and made me want to teach in it. See, isn’t it cute?

After we were finished with the museum, we went to the most awesome outdoor mall I’ve ever seen in my life, also known as Easton Town Center. Everything looked like a piece out of time and it was filled with people! Perhaps the best part (okay, it is the best part) was when we went into the Barnes and Noble and Matt bought me my birthday present a whole month early. My Nook! I’m kind of in love with it. He also bought me Words With Friends, Watchman, Angry Birds Rio and a subscription to TV Guide. Reading a comic book on that is really awesome with the zoom feature because it zooms in/out depending on the frame sizes and moves to the next part when you tap the right hand side.

Matt also has a new favorite store and for good reason too. They had really awesome shirts about local sports teams (including our beloved Reds) and gave us each a FREE coke in a glass bottle. Heart won over.


That night we found our way to the recreation center of the city for a 100 Years of Broadway show. Let me just say I am jealous of their facilities. The show was really neat and simple as well. Just five stools/music stands with singers each in a different vibrant colored shirt or dress and a pianist. I kind of felt sorry for the only guy, but they did a wonderful job. They walked us through the history of Broadway songs by talking about each era and singing several songs from each.

Something I learned from that show? I haven’t seen nearly as many musicals as I thought and I plan on fixing that ASAP.

Sunday we ate at a donut place not available around us called Tim Hortons and my blueberry bagel was delicious. I really loved how they use real plates too. Sustainability!

After that new experience, we went back to the town center for some more shopping, mostly of the window variety and hanging out. The Container Store is amazing and I’m so so glad they have one in Kenwood. Then we went to a truly unique move experience, a Dine-In with the most comfortable seats known to possibly all of existence. We saw The Campaign whilst enjoying delicious chips and queso dip, soft pretzels and cheesy bread. Yum yum. Plus they have the bajillion flavor pop machines so I enjoyed a Peach Mountain Dew as well. The Campaigns was hysterical and if you’re a fan of either Will or Zac, you must see it. Ted was still funnier, but I loved this as well.

We decided to wait until Monday to pick up Baxter before taking him to the vet for his yearly checkup. He wasn’t too happy with me that night but he turned around quickly, as I figured he would. The vet had called earlier to ask if I could get there earlier, so I did and they still didn’t see us until the original time. No big deal, just not too happy for my baby who hates being in his cage and going to the vet.

Tomorrow (Thursday) is Olympics at work and I’m super stoked. I freaking love my office. Events include putt-putt, cornhole, rubberband shooting and ring toss. Plus lots of free food.

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People Take Movies Way Too Seriously

This is long so consider this your warning.

So please know that this is not meant to take away from the tragedy in Colorado for the same movie this experience took place because of. It would have been ridiculous no matter what.

Matt, my brother and I went to see The Dark Knight Rises Saturday evening at 8:30 in IMAX (it was amazing, but I digress). The theater we went to has a different process to make things easier for premiere weekends of big movies. Normally you go up the single escalator on the right hand side and they take your ticket there. For these special weekends, they reverse the escalators so that there’s a ticket taker on the bottom of the left hand side escaltors and you go up there after you wait in special lines. They have lines on the lower escalator level for each show time, marked appropriately but only two at a time due to space restraints. I promise this is important information.

SO we got there around 7pm to try and get a good seat. We ask the ticket taker where the line for the 8:30 IMAX showing is and he tells us there isn’t one yet and to get in line with the 7:30 IMAX people. So clearly, that is what we do.

These other patrons start their own line next to the 7:30 IMAX line, declaring it to be the 8:30 IMAX line. Our line starts moving. We get up to the front and we stop to let the other 7:30 people pass us by, as per directions from the employee. Jerks over in the self-declared IMAX line start yelling at us, saying we cut in line blah blah blah. We tell them we only did what the employee asked of us and they continue to be extremely rude. I’m getting a little heated but before I do anything, I go and ask the employee we spoke with about where to go for clarification. Guess what, I was right. He told everyone to get in the 7:30 line and they didn’t listen.

I go back to them and tell them this information that they refuse to believe (poor employee was stuck at the ticket taker booth and couldn’t move from it) or come with me to speak to him about it. They kept saying they’d wait until an employee came down to tell us all they were right and then we’d be farther back in line. Right…

We let it go. They continue to be extremely rude so we get a little miffed again. They wanted us to “own up” to something I’m not sure of (y’know, besides we can follow directions and they can’t). I go back up to the employee and he tells me to go upstairs to get someone to come down and take care of it. I do, they’re very sorry, someone will be down, blah blah blah.

No one comes down. I go back in line and the 4 people who were most vocal about us “cutting” have now moved themselves to the front of the line. OH NO WE ARE ONLY 4-7 IN LINE FOR A HUGE THEATER, WE ARE NEVER GOING TO GET A GOOD SEAT. /sarcasm

They continue to be jerks so I go up to the employee again, apologize for bothering him but I won’t be treated this way, and he asks me to go upstairs again, making sure someone comes down with me. Turns out I go up there only to have to come back down to talk to an employee in a Robin costume. This is when I start to laugh inside and pray that he will come over, in his ROBIN costume and put these jerks in their place. Well he doesn’t, but what he does is almost better. He tells me to have us all go up right now and be the first in the theater after they clear it out.

So we get our awesome seats and sit down. The group of four come into the theater about 5-10 minutes later and the one says “Oh look, they’re here”. Obviously none of us say anything to them because IT IS JUST A FREAKING MOVIE GET OVER YOURSELF.

Talking about it later, I decided that I should have found out if they have a soul or not by asking them if they realized people died the day prior in a theater for this very same movie. If that hadn’t shut them up, who knew what would. I’m mostly kidding with that part.

Oh and when Matt and I went to see the Hunger Games on premiere weekend, the same thing happened to us except we were the ones in the wrong line. Guess what we did? Got in the back of the line realizing we were wrong. AMAZING HOW THAT WORKS.

So that was our experience before the movie even started. Gotta wonder how some people were raised honestly. The movie was amazing and if you intend on seeing it, I wouldn’t read this next part.


They better make a Nightwing or another Batman movie with Robin or “Robin” taking over the Batman role. I’m leaning towards wanting Nightwing since that’s completely new to the movie world and the movie world needs new. Dark Knight Rises seriously topped Dark Knight and Batman Begins and both of those are amazing in their own right. The twist with HER being the daughter of Razagoul (totally butchered spelling, I know) instead of Bane being the son blew my mind. I was not expecting that at all. Amazing.


Oh, and I finished Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Saturday. AMAZING. ❤ Kind of strange but the first thing that came to my mind at the end of the book was whether or not Hermoine goes back to fix her parent’s memories. I assume she did but I wish there would have been a small mention of it happening. Now I want to watch all of the movies again. Pronto!

In other news, this week is VBS at church and I’m once again finding myself in crafts, my favorite place to be. It’s been great. I had a moment where I really missed teaching because I got through to a child like no one else had apparently all day. We were making bubble magnets out of predrawn pictures the children could color but he wasn’t interested in any of those pictures. So I flipped it over and asked if he wanted to draw any of his own pictures. He still wasn’t interested so I decided to try one last thing – I drew a circle around one of the marbles and wrote his name on the inside. Finally, he was excited! He cut it out himself, glued it to the marble and asked me to draw another circle. He wound up making one for each of his parents, his brother and their dog. After the kids left, one of the guides came back to thank me for getting through to him and getting him engaged. Apparently he hadn’t done much all day. Today, it was participating without much prodding! It was wonderful.

Looking forward to two more days of crafts and the closing program!

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Weekend At Last

It’s finally the weekend, but it’s bittersweet as I wish what happened early this morning in Colorado wasn’t even someone’s passing thought. My heart breaks for all of the friends and family affected by the shooting at the multiplex for the showing of The Dark Knight Rises. I have never and will never understand people. We were already planning on going to see it tomorrow with my brother and now we’re looking forward to being searched upon entering the theater building. My prayers go out to all of those people.

Wednesday was spent hanging out at my aunt’s house with a lot of my other aunts and female cousins, enjoying delicious food and some wine. If only it were for a happier occasion than supporting my aunt in her upcoming battle with cancer. Despite the reason for the get-together, it was absolutely wonderful to be together, support her as a family and laugh. Laughter, as they always say, is the best medicine.

Moving on from the depressing…I’m watching Glee on Netflix for the first time. I’m now on episode 14 of season 1 and I’m not sure why I never watched this before. I love it. A lot.

In just a little bit I’m going to start the scrapbook for our honeymoon. I haven’t scrapbooked for MONTHS and I miss it terribly. So excited I don’t have wedding projects flooding my brain 24/7 anymore and sucking up all of my time.

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Month of Marriage, Hunger Games & Solitude

Monday was an awesome day merely because Matt and I had been married a whole month on that day. We celebrated by opening up a bottle of champagne leftover from our wedding and downing the entire thing. It’s hard to believe I’ve been married to my best friend for that long already. It’ll only go faster from here is what I’ve heard! 

Last night H and I went to see Hunger Games for the second time with my cousin and her boyfriend. She had just finished the books, rereading the first actually, and wanted to see the movie for the first time so we all went down to the cheap night at the dollar saver cinemas for it. Yup, there’s a cheap night even at the cheapies and it’s the second time we’ve taken advantage of it in the past two months. It was a great night.

Prior to the movie we were at her parent’s house for dinner. My aunt made chili spaghetti and it was delicious. Something I’ve never seen go with that meal before was peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Very interesting. 

Today was the first day of this long week where I’m completely alone in my row at work. My two partners in crime are on their house trip with “the group” so things are a heck of lot quieter. I did treat myself to Graeter’s ice cream today and eat lunch on the square again. I was hoping for some choirs or bands from the World Choir Games but I got treated to the Corporate Olympics instead and was majorly disappointed. It would have been entertaining at least if I had gotten to watch but I had to sit too far away.

Oh well, I read 70 pages of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows today, part of it at lunch. I really hate myself for being “too cool” to read Harry Potter when it was actually out. These books are amazing. 

Tonight was the first actual recipe meal I made Matt since we got married and it turned out amazing. Just some Chicken Corkscrew Pasta that I made super colorful by buying the multi-colored noodles. Just in case you’re wondering, it tasted great too. 😉 Enough leftovers for each of us for lunch tomorrow and Matt had the foresight enough to pack it in two different containers. I think I’ll keep him. 

Tomorrow I’m looking forward to going out to eat with my in-laws for my brother-in-laws birthday. We’re going to a local pizza place that went from a small hole in the wall to renting out an old Blockbuster space. I’ve heard it’s really good plus I’ll get to add another new restaurant to my 10 new restaurant list (Day Zero Project).