turkey burgers.

Growing up with two older brothers, I’ve been more independent than one might think. Or at least, more independent on the outside — and heavily dependent on my brothers, Mom, and Dad.

As I’ve gotten older I’ve admitted more and more that one thing’s true — you need a man. He doesn’t have to be your boyfriend or your husband, but there are some things that are just easier when a guy’s around.

In our house, Dad always operated the grill. Mom cooked everything else, but Dad did the grilling. So when my friend Ashley suggested cooking turkey burgers I immediately thought: “How?” “It’s raining out.” “Plus, I don’t grill.”

Alas, I turned to the stove top and put on my “I don’t need a man” hat and got to cooking what is, by far, the easiest lunch I’ve ever had.

Turkey Burgers


Ground turkey from Publix - around $5
Mrs. Dash – Which I admit, I didn’t have. So I used garlic powder, Buster’s Rub, and a tiny bit of soy sauce. Mrs. Dash all the way next time!


1. I made 5 patties from the ground turkey I had. (That’s $1/lunch!)
2. I turned the stove top to medium-high heat, poured some olive oil on the pan, and tossed some patties on it. Make sure you don’t crowd the pan. I cooked 3 the first time and the last 2 the second time (adding more olive oil in between).
3. After 5 or so minutes, flip the patties and cook for around 5 minutes on the other side until done.

I ate this topped with some fresh avocado and it was perfect. Who knew it was that easy?

brevard getaway.

I was in desperate need of  a weekend away this past weekend and so D and I pointed the car north on Friday afternoon and headed straight to Brevard.

When we got there, we stopped for mexican food and beers at Quixote, a favorite of mine. Vacation had officially begun.


Saturday morning we got up early (and in the pouring rain), grabbed breakfast at Bracken Mountain Bakery, and headed to Pisgah National Forest to check out the waterfalls.


The upside was that there was no one there, so it felt like we had the forest all to ourselves.


Well, as “to ourselves” as we could be with this guy.


We went to Looking Glass Falls and Moore Cove Falls and a few others along the way. I felt like we kept finding waterfalls everywhere we turned and I loved it.


I especially loved walking under the waterfall especially. Not to mention that was the only place I could stay dry.


That afternoon we grabbed lunch at The Square Root. I had the fried green tomato BLT with sweet potato chips and D had the london broil sandwich, both with a side or Brevard Brewing Ale. We loved everything about the place.


After lunch and some shopping (D is such a good sport), we headed over to Oskar Blues – my favorite brewery! I knew exactly what I wanted: Mama’s Little Yella Pils. D was a bit more unsure … but he eventually found his way!


Saturday night we headed to dinner at Hobnob. It was the perfect atmosphere and such a great date night with my favorite person.


We went to The Phoenix afterwards to hear a rockabilly band. I drank peach moonshine and enjoyed watching everybody else dance.


Sunday morning on our way out of town we stopped for brunch at Cedar Mountain Cafe before heading up to Pretty Place – arguably my favorite place in the world.


I was glad I finally got a chance to share it with D.


After we left Camp Greenville, we headed down to hike Raven Cliff Falls. Once we finished that 4.5 mile long trail, I felt like I deserved another beer and soon.


We stopped in Greenville on the way home and grabbed a late lunch at the Universal Joint, one of my favorites from Asheville.

I had such a wonderful time in the mountains with my best friend and I already can’t wait to escape with him again soon.

salsa chicken + spicy fries.

Is anyone else slightly scared of using crock pots? I think it’s just the notion of leaving something “on” all day while I sit at my desk 6 miles away.

I’m slowly trying to get over that since everyone else in the world seems to be capitalizing on the slow cooker revolution. So, I set up the crock pot in the morning before I left for the office and crossed my fingers all would be well (and not on fire or completely dry) upon my return.

Salsa Chicken


3-4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 large diced tomatoes - I only used one roma.
1.5 cups (roughly) of your favorite salsa
2 tbsp garlic powder - I used fresh minced garlic.
2 tbsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
sliced onions and bell peppers left over from a previous recipe


1. Place chicken in crock pot and add all remaining ingredients.
2. Cook on low for at least 7 hours. I definitely cooked it more than 7 hours. I was at the office for 10.
3. Once cooked, shred the chicken in the crock pot and let it cool before placing it in a container.

As a side, I had planned on cooking spicy sweet potato fries but apparently picked up regular potatoes instead. Not realizing this until I stepped in the kitchen after work, I decided to keep with the same recipe and try it with sweet potatoes later.

Spicy Fries


2 potatoes
diced garlic
cayenne pepper
olive oil


1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
2. Slice potatoes into fry shapes.
3. Place potato slices on sheet in a bowl and sprinkle with all the spices and olive oil. Toss to combine.
4. Grease a cookie sheet and add potato slices, spreading in an even layer. Top with more paprika and cayenne pepper.
5. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping halfway through and checking near the end to avoid burning.

I served the salsa chicken on whole wheat hoagie rolls topped with a slice of gouda. It was delicious and filling — and made plenty of leftovers! Some of which we added some cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and Texas Pete too and made buffalo chicken dip!


greenville, how i have missed you.

If I didn’t love Columbia (and being nearest my family and friends) so much, I’d move to Greenville in a heartbeat. It’s beautiful, it’s close to Clemson, it’s got a thriving art community, the food one-ups us over and over again, and so much more.

D and I headed up there in June for my friend Jarvis’ backyard wedding. First, we joined Reagan and Trey for a late lunch at The Velo Fellow. I ordered a delicious po’ boy.

Po’ Boy

Fried green tomato with bacon and pimento cheese served on soft, toasted Italian bread with lettuce & tomato.

Shortly thereafter we headed to the wedding.


{Trey, Reagan, Jarvis, Sarah, me, D}

On Sunday morning, D and I went to brunch at The Bohemian. It was delicious.


Taos Breakfast Burrito

A flour tortilla wrapped around eggs, green chiles, grilled onions, cheddar, home fries and spicy homemade chorizo sausage, garnished with green chiles and served with grits

We stepped next door to Horizon Records to pick up a stash of new vinyl before heading out.


Next stop: Greer. D got to meet Ben for the first time! They were the cutest.


soulshine is better than sunshine.

I’m fairly predictable sometimes when it comes to music. Every time a Neil Young song plays, somewhere I’m saying “I love this song.” I go straight to Van Morrison’s name every time I enter a record store. And every time “Soulshine” plays I smile big. (Hearing Government Mule play it live this year was the best.)

So when a friend of mine commissioned me to paint those lyrics for her, I was ecstatic. She gave me no boundaries — something that sometimes makes me nervous but this one time, I really loved. “Colorful” was all I was told. The dimensions I made up myself and the fun began.


I really wanted something that was versatile and would work with whatever color scheme she had (which I didn’t know). I also worked with a lot of the colors I’ve leaned towards lately for a couple of reasons: I already had them on hand and because they are colors I’ve really been loving lately.

Here’s the final product:


aiken bluegrass festival.

D and I took a road trip to Aiken for the Aiken Bluegrass Festival this year and had such a fun time getting away for the night for hours of live bluegrass, cold beer, and a terrible night’s sleep in the tent. Luxuries, I tell ya.

We got to check out Larry Keel covering Jerry Garcia, Town Mountain, the Travelin’ McCourys, and my fave – Keller Williams! We saw Keller perform at River Rocks Music Festival back in April, which was a bit of a different element than his set at the Aiken County Fairgrounds.


{I love Oskar Blues.}


{Larry & Jenny Keel.}


{Mary Beth (and Tucker!) surprised us!}


{Live music is our favorite.}


{Keller alongside Larry and Jenny Keel.}


{Dancing with my best friend.}

showering amanda.

Ferris Bueller once, quite notably, remarked “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” I feel like that has pretty much been the theme of the last several months for me.

In April, as I was preparing for an event, running my 4th half marathon, celebrating the birth of my new nephew, spending Easter with the family, dancing away as a bridesmaid, and so much more, I was also so lucky to help co-host a shower for my dear friend Amanda in celebration of her impending bundles of joy! Yes, bundles — plural! I couldn’t be happier to decorate in all things pink AND blue. And Amanda’s nursery being grey and turquoise meant all things pink and turquoise. What could be better?!

I made a banner with the twins’ names on it which Amanda now has hanging in the nursery! Mary Beth, Valerie, and I made pom poms and strung them from the chandelier and across the mantle along with some onesies done for us by SRC Embroidery. I also painted a 2×4 to be used to decorate in the nursery.


We also had some peas in a pod for guests to take with them as well as a little station for them to write a note to Amanda and Hayes (and Elliott and Cole, too!).


In addition to sweet treats and a mimosa bar (or just OJ and cranberry juice, if you will), we had a wonderful time showering Amanda.

One of my favorite things we did to decorate for the event was painting mason jars. I’ve seen a lot of tutorials online for how to do this, but we decided to paint the exterior of the mason jars rather than the interior. This way it was a lot easier to do (rather than throw paint inside and shake it up and hope you don’t add too much or later on wash it out accidentally) and we were able to sand it down to give it a rustic look. When cleaning (once we emptied the flowers out) it was a lot easier without acrylic paint coming into play.

I had such a good time celebrating Elliott and Cole and spending time with my sweet friends.