Saturday, June 30, 2012


Going through some of my stuff in my room I found these! My two IDs from High School. 

Taken in Fall of 2005. 
Taken Fall 2007. Junior and Senior year they were put on a lanyard so we had to wear them everyday. 
Has anybody else kept their high school Id's? I plan on putting them in my scrapbook at some point. 

Friday, June 29, 2012

People Like Us

Today I went to the theaters to see People Like Us. I thought it was good! It was definitely a drama and there were some deep themes in the movie. So more for women then men. They advertised for this movie a lot and I think that's what made me want to go. I would say it's a "feel good movie of the summer" as they said on TV.

Here is what it is about according Rotten Tomatoes:

From DreamWorks Pictures comes People Like Us, a drama/comedy about family, inspired by true events, starring Chris Pine as Sam, a twenty-something, fast-talking salesman, whose latest deal collapses on the day he learns that his father has suddenly died. Against his wishes, Sam is called home, where he must put his father's estate in order and reconnect with his estranged family. In the course of fulfilling his father's last wishes, Sam uncovers a startling secret that turns his entire world upside down: He has a 30-year-old sister Frankie whom he never knew about (Elizabeth Banks). As their relationship develops, Sam is forced to rethink everything he thought he knew about his family-and re-examine his own life choices in the process. -- (C) Dreamworks

I was surprised to see that Rotten Tomatoes only rated it a 55%, I thought it at least deserved 65%! 

Has anyone seen Magic Mike? I've heard good things and I may be curious to see it! 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Family Time

It's been a great weekend! My Uncle Ben, Aunt Lesley and their kids Sean and Allison (who we saw in NYC Thursday) visited yesterday and left earlier today. Also, my Mom's cousin Stacy her husband and two little boys, Abel and Noble came for the day yesterday too. So it was busy at the Ruppelt house! I had fun talking to the adults and playing with the kids as well. 

Here are some pictures from the day...

Abel and Sean. Stacy brought Junior's Chocolate Fudge Cake for her birthday. I have to  say it was the BEST chocolate cake I've ever had. I'm not exaggerating. 
I made this pizza for dinner plus cheese for the kids. 
Allison did a great job helping me spread out the dough.
And Sean helped sprinkle the cheese.
Everyone (minus Dad taking the picture)
Today after mass and breakfast we went to the dog park. Sean and Allison enjoyed it! They could have played in the creek all day. When we came back it was time for them to leave. Hopefully I will get to see them again soon!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Top of Empire State

Yesterday, Nick and I headed to NYC to meet up with my Uncle Ben and my cousins, Sean and Allison. We had a busy and fun day!

This is what we did....
1. Walked to the Empire State Building and went to the top.  Sean (5 years old) is OBSESSED with tall buildings, and Empire State being his favorite. He has postcards and miniature ones hanging up in his room. This was my first time going up to the top (considering how many times I have been the NYC the past couple of years). It was really cool! It was a little hazy but you could see up to 10 miles! 
Cheesin' at the top of Empire State Building
2. Made our way up to Central Park and along the way....

  • Visited the Lego Store
  • Visited St. Patrick's Cathedral.  Sean and Allison shared with God that fish are what they are thankful far. (It was too cute!)
  • Stopped in FAO Schwartz Toy Shop. This was my first time here. One word to describe it: HUGE! It just kept going, going, and going. Any toy you can imagine was there, ANY!
Sean wanted this giant Angry Bird 
We finally made our way to Central Park (30 or so blocks) in the heat! We walked around for a little while and caught a cab back to the hotel. 
Climbing rocks in Central Park
3. Ate dinner at a dive, aka, hole in the was pizza and quite delicious.
4. Went to Bryant Park. Allison and Sean rode a merry-go-round and we played duck duck goose and tag. They wore me out!

Resting after a game of tag in Bryant Park
5. Headed back to their hotel and hung out for a little bit before Nick and I caught our train at Grand Central Station.

It was a fun day! And the good thing is my uncle, aunt, and cousins will be visiting our house tomorrow, so I will get to see them again. YAY! 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Heaven is for Real

On Monday I went to the library to study for the GRE and before I left of course I had to look at the books and movies. Looking through the "new book" section I found Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo. I heard of this book from the Today Show because the author and his son were on. They were discussing the book and I thought it sounded interesting. So I decided to check it out! It was relatively short and I finished it today. The story was quite amazing in my opinion. It is about a boy who goes to heaven for short time while he was in surgery at the age of four. Shortly after, he starts sharing what he saw. He would say things such as "God really LOVES children" "Dad, He sent down the Holy Spirit during your sermon" "Jesus had marks on his hands" ....all of this being said by a four-year-old. He also revealed that he knew he had another sister that was already in Heaven because his mother had a miscarriage before he was born. WOW! It was lifting to hear what a child saw during a near death experience.  I would highly recommend reading this book because it was an amazing story. 

"Heaven Is for Real is the true story of the four-year old son of a small town Nebraska pastor who during emergency surgery slips from consciousness and enters heaven. He survives and begins talking about being able to look down and see the doctor operating and his dad praying in the waiting room. The family didn't know what to believe but soon the evidence was clear.
Colton said he met his miscarried sister, whom no one had told him about, and his great grandfather who died 30 years before Colton was born, then shared impossible-to-know details about each. He describes the horse that only Jesus could ride, about how "reaaally big" God and his chair are, and how the Holy Spirit "shoots down power" from heaven to help us.
Told by the father, but often in Colton's own words, the disarmingly simple message is heaven is a real place, Jesus really loves children, and be ready, there is a coming last battle."

From: Official Website

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Two Celebrations

Happy Father's Day DAD and Happy Birthday NICK (20 years)! Very rarely do these fall on the same year, but this year it did! 

For dessert I found a recipe from Plain Chicken, a blog that I follow. I actually saw this online a few months ago and knew I had to make it for dad. His favorite dessert is Pecan Pie, so to spice it up I made Chocolate Cheesecake Pecan Pie!

1 pie crust
1 (8-oz.) package milk chocoalte cream cheese, softened 
4 large eggs, divided 
6 Tbsp sugar, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
1 1/4 cups chopped pecans 
1 cup light corn syrup 

Preheat oven to 350.
Put the pie crust in a deep dish pie pan. Beat cream cheese, 1 egg, 2 Tbsp sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla, and salt at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour cream cheese mixture into piecrust; sprinkle evenly with chopped pecans. Whisk together corn syrup and remaining 3 eggs, 4 Tbsp sugar, and 1 tsp. vanilla; pour mixture over pecans. 
Place pie on a baking sheet. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until pie is set. Cool on a wire rack 1 hour or until completely cool. Refrigerate after leftovers. 

Adapted from HERE.


Happy 20th Birthday Nick!
I wonder what his wish was?
Dad opening his gift

Would you like a piece?
Half gone, must mean it was good!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Portobello Mushroom Goodness

Last week for my Mom's birthday I wanted to make dinner for her and the family. I knew that she loves mushrooms, especially portobello, so I looked up a recipe. It was one of our side items. We went for a visit at Stew Leonard's and found some delicious looking mushrooms! Below is the recipe.


  • 4 large portobello mushrooms
  • Sea salt, preferably gray sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 (8-ounce) container hummus
  • Feta cheese


Preheat the grill. Pop out the stem from all of the portobello mushrooms. Season both sides of mushrooms. Start by drizzling olive oil (not too much, just a slight drizzle), some salt and fresh black pepper. Cook mushrooms over a hot fire for about 4 minutes on each side. Top with a tablespoon of hummus and a chunk of feta cheese right in the middle. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from: Food Network

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Turn to Me

I finished the second book of the Kathleen Turner Series (following No Turning Back) by Tiffany Snow called Turn to Me. Once again, just like the first one, it was action-packed and great! I really wish there was a third one out...but I guess I will have to wait until the next one is written (which I know the author is in the works). 

When Kathleen Turner, office runner for the prestigious Indianapolis law firm of Kirk & Trent, started dating the boss she knew the risks. Senior Partner Blane Kirk is known for being a notorious player - the Baskin Robbins of dating with a different flavor every month. Kathleen is the happiest she’s been in a long time, especially as Christmas approaches, but she’s always known there was a termination date on her relationship with Blane. 
She just didn’t expect that termination to be her funeral.
A festive afternoon of Christmas tree shopping turns life-threatening when Kathleen and Blane become targets for an unknown gunman. They make it home alive, but Kathleen realizes her boyfriend has been keeping secrets. The deadly kind.
Blane’s current case is drawing heated debate and stirring the pot of public fury. Kathleen is horrified by the threats – and worse – being directed at him. A former Navy SEAL stands accused of the wrongful death of an American citizen during a military operation overseas. The case has far-reaching political and military implications. Someone with a lot of money, and even more clout, wants Blane to lose.
As dead bodies of people connected to the defense start piling up, it becomes painfully obvious that disappearing witnesses and altered testimony are no longer enough for whoever is intent on guaranteeing the SEAL gets convicted. Kathleen and Kade, Blane’s brother and ex-FBI-agent-turned-assassin-for-hire, are on the trail of the killer. 
Unfortunately for Kathleen, he’s already moved for the end-game – by painting a target on her...and pulling the trigger.


I highly recommend this book! 

Mom's Birthday

Happy Birthday Mom! It's a few days late (June 8th) because her birthday was last week, but better late than never. We celebrated with a homemade dinner (made by everyone but Mom), cake, and presents. I tried a new recipe for Portebello mushrooms and made up my own cake. I will have another post about the mushrooms and below is the recipe for the cake. It was a big hit at this house! 

Happy Birthday Mom! :)

Candy Bar Brownie Cake
1 brownie mix-  Ghirardelli is the best! (plus the ingredients to make it)
10 Mini candy bars (variety)
Cream cheese frosting (recipe below)
Small jar of caramel 

Bake the brownie as directed on the box using a springform pan. Let the brownie completely cool. Spread a layer of caramel over the brownie. Spread the cream cheese frosting on top. Cut up the candy bars into small pieces. Sprinkle them on top. Drizzle the remaining caramel on top of the cake. Enjoy :) 

(BEST) Cream Cheese Frosting
1 - 8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 c. butter
 2 c. powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Store in the refrigerator after use.

From: All Recipes

The candy bars I used for the cake
We enjoyed it, as you can see!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Part of the Audience on The View

Today I went to NYC to be in the audience of the daytime talk show The View, on ABC. How did I get tickets you ask? My Mom's friend received four tickets and she asked my Mom, another friend, and I. I was so excited when I found out she invited us, it was really nice of her! 

So this morning, we left at 8:30 and headed to the city. It took us only 1 1/2 hours which is record time, because usually it takes longer with all the traffic. Once we arrived we waited in line for about an hour outside. Luckily they had a truck giving away free coffee and breakfast foods, so I grabbed an iced coffee (note to self: add more sugar next time). At around 11 they let us inside and we waited some more. Then at 12:30 we were let into the studio. 

The studio was a lot different then I imagined. It was small! But TV sure makes it look bigger. There were about 200 people in the audience- majority women (of course!). While we were waiting we had a comedian by the name of Thomas Kelly. He was quite funny, but a little crude too! 

FINALLY, the show started! The four co-hosts today were Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Sherri Shepherd, and Elizabeth Hasselbeck. Here is how the show went...

1. They discussed random stuff such as botox and little boys wearing skirts...
2. Teri Hatcher was on! She talked about her new show Jane by Design. 
3. Ice Cream from all over the country. Marc Summers (from Unwrapped) introduced all the companies. GRAETERS was there!! I thought we were going to get to sample some, but unfortunately we didn't :(
4. Segment about how to protect your skin during the summer
5. Keke Palmer from  Akeelah and the Bee and Ice Age. She also hosted a singing contest for Mcdonald's workers....and because of that everyone in the audience received a $50 gift card! YAY! 

Outside the Studio
Our ticket waiting in line 
Swee, Donna, and Mom
Mom and I waiting for it to start 
Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Sherri Shepherd, and Elizabeth Hasselbeck  
Teri Hatcher (with short hair!)
Marc Summers
This show was actually taped so it took over an hour to film. It will be shown on July 3rd at 11am ET and you should watch!! Hopefully you can spot me in the crowd. 
It was a great experience and really fun too! I already signed up to get tickets for next year, maybe I will get lucky! It was a great day :) 

After we went out to lunch at the Lincoln Center only a few blocks away. I had a delicious sandwich. Then we headed home! 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Scrap to the Book

Since the weather hasn't been the best I've been doing a lot of scrapbooking! Below are the pages I have completed this summer so far....

BROADWAY page: All the Broadway shows with the playbill and tickets I've seen (American Idiot, Jersey Boys, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Jesus Christ Superstar)

Easter 2012- At my Uncle and Aunt's house (for some reason, I'm not too happy how it turned out, oh well)
My cousins, Sean and Allison (when I babysat them last year)

Spain last summer (specifically Toledo) I plan on making an entire scrapbook for just my Spain trip. 

Mini-Marathon this year! (Sorry, but you will have to turn your head, for some reason it wouldn't upload the right direction) 

This is what my room looks like when I scrapbook. Yes, I know it's a mess! 

I hope to double or triple the amount of these pages by the end of summer. 

Mat Kearney- Ships in the Night

I like this one!

Friday, June 8, 2012

No Turning Back

WOW! Did I just read a good book! I finished reading the book No Turning Back by: Tiffany A. Snow. I really didn't want to put it down because there was so much action. It reminded me a lot of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but not as dark. I would give this book 5 out of 5 stars!

Kathleen Turner has goals. She moved to Indianapolis to start seeing to them, but things aren’t going quite as well as she’d hoped. She’s a runner for a high-powered law firm in town, not the most prestigious of positions, but it and her part-time bartender gig at least pays the bills. And one of the senior partners is a dreamboat in that obscenely rich, disturbingly good looking, slightly snobbish sort of way.
She was quite happy ogling him from afar, before she did a mortifying face plant in his lap during a meeting. After that…well…she was more about the avoiding. Mature, no. More likely to assure she keeps her job, yes.
She’s made some friends in the few months she’s been in Indy. One of those friends is her neighbor Sheila, though Kathleen can’t say she’s completely comfortable with Sheila’s job choice as a high-dollar escort.
It’s the middle of the night when Kathleen hears fighting coming from Sheila’s apartment. As disturbing as that is, it’s the ominous sound of silence afterwards that keeps Kathleen from falling back to sleep. Slipping from bed with the intention of making sure everything is okay, Kathleen knocks on her friend’s door, only to find Sheila murdered, her naked body sprawled on sheets stained crimson with her blood.
Shock and horror are followed by gritty determination when it becomes clear that Sheila’s death isn’t random and it isn’t the result of a jealous boyfriend. It’s the opening gambit in a web of murder, deceit, conspiracy, and fraud that stretches to the law firm for which Kathleen works. Maybe to the very office that Blane Kirk commands.
And Kathleen Turner, law office runner, can trust no one if she wants to survive.


Side note: my Mom bought this book for "free" on the Kindle and now it is no longer free. Lucky us! It must be because it was such a great book! :)
Now to start reading the second book!

Abbey of Regina Laudis

Yesterday my Mom, Grandpa, and I visited the Abbey of Regina Laudis which is a monastery for Benedictine women. Our parish priest was telling us about it and how they have a Creche- which is beautiful. Below is some more information about it all!

Regina Laudis is a monastery of contemplative Benedictine women living in union with the Roman Catholic Church and following the Rule of St. Benedictaccording to the Primitive Observance. Founded in 1947 in Bethlehem, Connecticut by Mother Benedict Duss. 

"The Crèche was  given to the Abbey in 1949 by Loretta Hines Howard in memory of her husband.  Mrs. Howard also gifted the Metropolitan Museum of Art with a similar Crèche some years later, one that is famously the centerpiece of the Museum's Medieval Galleries every Christmas.
The Abbey Crèche is thought to have belonged to Victor Amadeus the Second, King of Sardinia and is believed to have been presented to him on the occasion of his coronation in 1720.  After his death in 1732, it became property of an Italian family of the nobility until it was brought to America in 1948.

The Crèche, a remarkable ensemble, contains 68 figures between 14-16 inches high.  The figures, made of carved wood, terra cotta, porcelain and jute, are situated in a small village made primarily of the bark of cork trees that evokes the local surroundings of the Neapolitan artists of the time.  Dressed in their original 18th-century costumes, the figures vividly portray, in addition to the Holy Family, children, old and young women bearing gifts, merchants and peddlers, a princess and her whippet, angels, the Three Kings and peasants and their farm animals. Because the figures have retained their pristine historical condition, having been spared any prior restoration that would compromise them, the restoration of the Abbey's Crèche is making an important contribution to the body of knowledge available to the public and to art historians concerning materials, technology, methods of fabrication and art-historical context."

After visiting the abbey I was curious as to what the actual definitions of abbey, convent, and monastery are. So I googled it and this is what I found... (that's wikipedia ;) ) 

An abbey is a Catholic monastery or convent, under the authority of an Abbot or an Abbess, who serves as the spiritual father or mother of the community.
convent is either a community of priests, religious brothers, religious sisters, or nuns, or the building used by the community, particularly in the Roman Catholic Church and in the Anglican Communion.
Monastery  denotes the building, or complex of buildings, that houses a room reserved for prayer (e.g. an oratory) as well as the domestic quarters and workplace(s) of monastics, whether monks or nuns, and whether living in community or alone (hermits).

Good to know!

Monday, June 4, 2012

FireFlies in December

Book numero tres (3) completed for the summer. I read Fireflies in December written by Jennifer Erin Valent. I have to say the theme of the book was good, but other than that I wasn't a big fan. It was slow, but I got so far into it I decided to finish it. It was an easy read. 

Below is a description, if you think it sounds good then go for it, but I don't plan to read the next book...

Little does anyone realize that simple Christian charity will inflame the bigots and hatemongers in this small Virginia town. Escalating episodes of horrific violence ensue, including sexual attacks directed at 13-year-old Jessilyn Lassiter, the novel’s narrator, after her white family takes in her black best friend, Gemma, when she is orphaned by a tragic fire. Winner of the Christian Writers Guild’s 2007 Operation First Novel contest, Valent has created a darkly evocative historical novel that boldly explores the divisive effects of unreasoning hatred, greed, and fear on a community already struggling with the economic and racial tensions caused by the Depression and exacerbated by the Ku Klux Klan. As these forces impact one family, childhood innocence is lost, but Valent’s characters also experience the affirmation of a deeper, more lasting faith. --Lynne Welch