Monday, September 30, 2013

Last week of class...

As some of you may know, I decided to take an online photography class to sharpen some of my skills.  I wouldn't say I am an expert by any means, but I do love to take pictures every where I go!

These are some pics from a few weeks ago..

Here are this past weeks photos..

I made this bouquet of flowers this past week!

Rainy morning


Saturday, September 28, 2013


One of my new favorite American Made companies is Forged.  This company is owned and operated by former Navy SEALS.  I have bought a few shirts for myself on here, as well as for my siblings, friends, etc. 

I just bought this one to wear for Red Fridays.  The shirts are well made, and so comfortable.  If you want to buy a Patriotic shirt, and support the troops, check out Forged!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Quick Chicken Marsala

Chicken marsala is one of my favorite chicken recipes to make.  I usually make it with Marsala wine, but for some reason, I could not find any at the store.  So..I found some from Giada at Target, and I used that instead.  Worked like a charm, and was much easier to make.  For a quick and easy recipe, just follow the following steps!

  • butter
  • chicken
  • flour
  • oregano
  • mushrooms
  • jar of Giada at Home Marsala sauce
I sautéed the mushrooms in butter, then dredged the chicken breast in flour and oregano.  I cooked the chicken in the butter and mushroom mixture, and then added the sauce after the chicken was cooked thoroughly. 

Most folks serve this chicken over pasta, but since I could use less carbs in my life, I just eat it plain.  Oh my goodness, this was not only amazing, but only took about 20 minutes!

Sunday, September 22, 2013


I decided it was time to actually take my photography to the next level, so I started taking an online class.  It has definitely opened my eyes to new ways to take pictures.  I am looking forward to actually getting out more to take pictures, but unfortunately my sea schedule and rain has kept me inside.

Here are a few of the pics I have taken recently..and you can see my last batch here.

This picture was for the concepts of framing and focus

This picture was for macro and perspective

Same concepts as above

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Into the Mystic...

This week was one long week at sea.  Whenever I get all sappy and nostalgic about my times out at sea...I always think of this song.

I love Van Morrison, and I love sleep.  Sleep was one thing I didn't really get this week, 10 hours with a 100+ hour work week. Sailors did well, we all did well! 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Bite Size Apple Pie

It is almost fall, and I saw this recipe, and had to make it! 

You only need 4 ingredients:

Crescent rolls

I made a small batch, as I don't cook for a lot of people!  I used 1 can of 4 rolls, 1 apple, melted butter, and cinnamon.  Followed the directions on the crescent rolls, and viola!  Bite Size Apple Pie. 

Finished product

So so good!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Every year since 9/11, I have always remembered how that day has not only affected me, but my brothers and sisters and arms, and my country. 

It is hard to believe that so many years have gone by, and our world is still plagued by terrorism. 

I wrote this piece on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.  It is a good read. 

Say a little prayer today.  For our troops that fight for our rights and freedoms each day, whether at home or deployed. 

Picture of me on my most recent deployment.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

More Decor!

Many of you have seen my post "All Settled" where I wrote about my new apartment in Jacksonville, Florida.  I still had a few more pieces of art work at Michaels getting framed.  Here they are! 

I purchased the Pineapple print from the Third and Elm Press.  It is owned and operated by a sweet woman, named Mrs. Nesbitt.  I bought this print and other cards from her at her shop. 

The other two prints I purchased from a local Newport artist by the name of Anthony Gill.  His shop is located in Bannister's Wharf

I absolutely love these three pieces, and they embody Newport to the fullest.  The pineapple is a major symbol of hospitality, especially on the East Coast.  The other two pieces show the Newport Pell Bridge and the lighthouse, as well as Bannister's Wharf, two prominent locations in town.  I really want to visit Newport more often, perhaps even purchase a home or a time share there.  Dreams...dreams. :)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Coconut Mahi Mahi

So one of my fav "cheat" dinners is always picking up something quick at the local market.  By cheat I mean.."kind of cook".   We only have 1 Whole Foods in Jax.  I know.  Tragic.  No Trader Joes either.  I swear.  The madness.

But..there is a Fresh Market.  I went there, and found some of my favorite things, like coconut crusted mahi mahi.  Amazing fish.  Just bake it and serve.  I always pair it up with a salad, and this time I bought quinoa salad and a lemon orzo salad.  First time ever trying quinoa, and it wasn't bad, but not my favorite.  Maybe it was the salad, maybe it was the quinoa.  I won't give up just yet.  The lemon orzo salad.  OMG.  To die for.  For old times sake, I paired it up with Carolina Honey tea from Argo Tea in Chicago.  Oh...Argo.  I lived about a block away from one of their locations, and I always did my Masters coursework there.  Reading about National Security and Policy is much better over Pom Tea or Carolina Honey. 

Perfect portions.

With the Argo Tea.  Yum.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Neighborhood Highlights: Atlantic Beach Florida

This past weekend I went out and about to explore the area.  I hung out mostly in Atlantic Beach, which is near Naval Station Mayport. 

Some highlights:
Poe's Tavern.  Such a gem.  Really like this place. 
Culhane's Irish Pub.  Great food, great atmosphere.

There are a ton of great shops and restaurants I want to go to in the future.  Mostly I just walked around on Labor day, and took great photos for my photography class.  Most days I can't believe I live in Florida.  Gorgeous sun, great places to go.  Now if that whole work thing didn't always get in the way...

Me @ Poe's Tavern

Great part about Poe's, they make half pints!
Local haunts

Main drag

Walkway to the Beach



Lemon Bar

Pete's Bar

Monday, September 2, 2013

Crockpot Tortellini

I found this recipe on Facebook, and thought I would give it a try.  It is definitely a perfect recipe for a Sunday night dinner in the fall!  Pair it up with a salad and some fresh bread, it is amazing!

  • 1 bag of frozen tortellini
  • 1 small bag of fresh spinach
  • 2 cans of Italian style diced tomatoes
  • 1 box/4 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 block of cream cheese

Put all ingredients in a crock pot, and cut up the cream cheese into blocks.  Mix together, and cook on low for 5-6 hours!  Serves 4.

Crock Pot Creation!

Finished Product