Monday, August 31, 2015

Would You Rather? Book Edition

The wife is hosting a Blogger Book Drive with a few of her blogging friends to help support literacy for kids. This week, they are featuring a fun Would You Rather? theme and the wife asked me to get involved. So, here are my answers for Would you rather? Book Edition!  You can read her answers and find out more information here.

Would you rather be stranded on an island or lost in outer space?Stranded on an island - I could survive on an island and potentially get off and have a chance at rescue. In space, you're just gone. And if there's a rupture in the hull of your ship you're dead/frozen/in the dark/alone. Not exactly what I would call a nice vacation. LOL

Would you rather fall in love or go on an adventure?
I would rather go on an adventure but that is a double edged question because as we have proven so far love creates an adventure.

Would you rather read a comic book or a magazine?
Comic book, I don’t care what some dumb ass writer thinks they know about the opposite sex, and aside from the advertisements that is all a magazine is, with the exception of a very few.

Would you rather read inside or outside?
Outside - the sunlight and sounds and feelings around me make it easier to put myself into the world I'm reading about.

Would you rather be the main character experiencing all of the conflict or a side character watching all of the conflict?
Main character, extras normally die in the kinds of books I read... come to think of it, a lot of the main characters die too but they go down in a blaze of glory.

Would you rather read a book written in first person or third person?
Third, I don’t care what they think - I want to know what they do.

Would you rather have a book suggested to you or judge a book by its cover (front and back)?
Suggested - if the book is suggested, it insinuates that the suggester is or has read the book and thinks that the suggestee will like it. Unless they don’t like each other and that makes one or both of them an ass hole.

Would you rather be the princess or the hero in a fairy tale?
Princess. (Was that really a question you ask a dude?) Why would any guy want to be the victim? Unless the princess is a total bad ass that calls lightning from the skies and brings the gods to bow down before them, I wouldn’t undergo the sex change. Just not worth it.

Would you rather read a novel or a short story?
The answer is both. I like reading short stories for the convenience of them. However, there is something to be said about the level of attachment and character development that comes along with a novel or better series that I tend to read. They allow you to truly connect with the characters as if they were your friends or worst enemies.

Would you rather read the book or watch the movie first?
Watch the movie first because if you read the book and then watch the movie you are typically disappointed in the movie.

What would be your answers to these questions? We'd love to see them!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Photo Friday

Since we've been blogging for almost two months now, I thought it'd be nice to take a break and show you who the bloggers behind the blog are. So, here you go - nothing but photos on this Friday! By the way...getting the husband to smile in a picture is never easy!  (These are in no particular order by the way!)

Dillon's Beach, CA 
July 2015

Blind Tiger Pub (where we met)
Charleston, SC
August 2014

San Francisco, CA
August 2014

Charleston, SC
December 2012

Fayetteville, AR (engagement pictures)
September 2014

Charleston, SC (wedding shower)
August 2014

Diablo Foothills Trail, CA
June 2015

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Deployment Bucket List

Every time the husband deploys, I make a bucket list of things to do while he is away. With his current boat, we have been through quite a few deployments. I thought I'd take a moment today to share the latest bucket list I made for a deployment.

1. Grow Hodge Podge Moments and The Coastie Couple.

2. Reorganize the apartment to prepare for our next big move.

3. Exercise daily for 100 days.

4. Visit Charleston (my hometown).

5. Help others start a fitness routine with Beachbody.

6. Read five new books.

7. Find a new show to watch on Netflix.

It's still pretty short right now, but the great thing about a bucket list is that you can keep adding to it. I'll continue to come back and update it as new things come to mind!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Happy Hour: Ironfire Brewing

Welcome to another edition of Happy Hour with The Coastie Couple where we review some of the craft beers we've encountered on our adventures. Today, we bring you a review of Viscious Disposition from Ironfire Brewing in Temecula, CA.

This beer is in every way a heavy beer. The unexpected part of this wonderful experience was the maltiness of this beer. The black gold was almost snuffed out by an indescribable sweetness that I couldn't pin down. We got the distinct privilege of talking to two of the gentleman who brew this beer, while another member of the brewery was doing an interview with The Brewing Network. The Brewing Network does their recordings at one of our favorite places - The Hop Grenade.

These gentlemen helped me place the odd sweetness, which comes from avocado blossom honey. This beer gets its unique flavor from the avocado blossom honey that is included in the brewing process of this fantastic beer. The whole thing was topped by a tart aftertaste that one would expect from a proper porter. If not for being told about it, the coffee flavor would have been totally missed in this complex and satisfying porter. If i had to describe the whole experience in one word, it would be "bravo!"

10 out of 10

Join us at the next Happy Hour for more honest reviews!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Chopped Inspired Challenge

I first met Tara of An Aiming High Wife in a military blogging group on Facebook. When I saw that she was hosting a Chopped inspired challenge, I decided it would be a fun challenge for my husband and me to participate in. We love to cook so the idea of creating a meal based on a few ingredients was very intriguing.

We were assigned to a group and give the following ingredients to work with: chicken, garlic, coconut milk, and ice tea. It took us a little while to figure out what we wanted to make. We did head over to Pinterest for a little more direction on how to prepare the chicken using coconut milk after we decided that was how we were going to do things. We didn't follow a recipe exactly, but we did use one for inspiration and I'll share it when we get to that part. (In our defense, we were short on time for this challenge and didn't really have time for an excess of trial and error!)

So, here goes nothing...

This is our finished meal. We chose to do coconut bread chicken (coconut milk + chicken), sweet lemon tea (iced tea), and garlic bread (garlic). The artichoke was thrown in as a side because I had never tried one before. We felt it was time to change that (plus we wanted to throw a vegetable in there and our asparagus was too expensive for our original plan of garlic asparagus).

For the chicken, we loosely followed this recipe that we found on Valley Ridge Recipes. We modified the recipe a little, choosing to do chicken nuggets instead of strips. We also chose to use our FryDaddy to fry the chicken instead of a skillet with oil. (We normally bake our chicken, so this was a new experience for us. I'm curious to try this recipe again with baking.) The nuggets turned out really well. We dipped them in sweet chili sauce and ranch.

For the garlic bread, we used a combination of butter and spices that I recently discovered created delicious bread. I'll be uploading the full recipe for them soon. These were a classic favorite that we continue to enjoy.

The artichoke was cooked by boiling it on the stove. (Since posting about it on Instagram and Facebook, I have been given all sorts of new ideas for trying this vegetable again!) We paired it with ranch for dipping.

For the iced tea, we brewed some I Love Lemon tea from Bigelow. After it was brewed, we added ice and sugar to create a sweet tea. I would recommend brewing the tea before you get started with everything else and putting some in the fridge so that it has time to cool down.

Overall, we enjoyed our meal a lot. We also enjoyed the challenge that came with creating a meal using specific ingredients. I think it was the coconut milk that threw us off the most. We cook with chicken and garlic all the time. Don't forget to come back and check out the super simple recipe for delicious garlic bread!

What would you have done with the ingredients we were given? How would you use chicken, coconut milk, garlic, and iced tea?

Monday, August 3, 2015

Deployment Tips for Military Spouses

The Coastie Husband is on a Coast Guard Cutter that is very active and gone for many months at a time. (Cutter is a fancy term for a big boat.) This means that we have been through many deployments as a dating couple and now as a married couple. It is never easy to be apart from your spouse, but I have learned there are certain things that help. I thought I'd share a few of those tips with you today.

1. Enlist support. 
While I don't recommend shouting "he's deployed right now" from the highest mountain peak, I do recommend letting your family and close friends know that he's gone. This allows you to build a support system that you can lean on during the tough times. I'm not one for sympathy during a deployment, but I do love having the support of my friends and family. There are going to be times when you need a listening ear or a big hug. These are the people who will be there for you in those times.

2. Take care of you.
This is not the time to let yourself go or to sit around miserable. Give yourself a few days to adjust and then pick yourself back up and focus on you. Continue to take care of yourself during this time. You'll only feel worse if you don't.

3. Do something special for yourself.
This is the perfect time to try a new hobby or watch the show you've been dying to watch. I first started blogging during our first deployment and it's now become a regular hobby. This is the perfect time to focus on your hobbies and interests.

4. Tackle a project (or projects) that you've been putting off.
This last deployment, I finally finished decorating our apartment. The husband came home to a bedroom decorated in Arkansas Razorback decor and a completed office space. I love to decorate so this kept me very busy. I created a list during the last deployment of things I wanted to try or accomplish. I enjoyed crossing things off the list and knowing that I had accomplished something for myself.

5. Create a new habit.
This one is what I'm going to focus on during the next deployment. I'm going to be joining Julie at Girl on the Move for her 100 Day Change movement. I'll be committing to working out every day until it becomes habit. I can't wait to see if I can make this lifestyle change over the course of 100 days. I'll be documenting it on our Instagram. I hope you'll stop by and check out my progress from time to time.

What about you? What are your tips for dealing with deployment or time away from your spouse?