Austin feeling a little more like home: Catholic Young Professionals Happy Hour

Say what? Yep, you read that right! Austin, Texas is starting to feel a little more like home.

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Austin is an interesting city, I was captivated with the live music, delicious eats, and all the new things to explore. Very quickly, after moving here, I was over it. The long lines, traffic and very strongly opinionated hipsters every where. Hardly anyone living here is actually from Austin, or even Texas. For this born and raised San Antonio, Texas girl, it has definitely been a learning cultural shock experience. Some of my co-workers tell me “this is Austin, not Texas.” Well, I sass right back to them ” Bless your heart, since Austin is in Texas, I guess by your logic, that makes Texas even better.”

If you’ve read any of my previous articles, you read of my homesickness and how much I miss the community. Well, remember that St. Ignatius retreat I went the other day? There was also announcement about a Catholic Young Professionals happy hour. I mentioned it to my friend, Vanessa, and we decided to go ahead and check it out.

Upon running toward the entrance of the W Hotel to escape the cold, we noticed a pretty big crowd in the window. I mentioned to Vanessa that the group we’re looking for is probably a lot smaller. But after wondering around, we found out that large group was actually the Catholic Young Professionals happy hour group. My heart jumped for joy! As we mixed and mingled I was so excited to meet so many people, a community, that shares the same faith.

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Prayer to St. Joseph the workman, was recited in a great warming unison.

O Glorious St. Joseph, model of all those who are devoted to labor, obtain for me the grace to work conscientiously, putting the call of duty above my natural inclinations, to work with gratitude and joy, in a spirit of penance for the remission of my sins, considering it an honor to employ and develop by means of labor the gifts received from God, to work with order, peace, moderation and patience, without ever shrinking from weariness and difficulties, to work above all with purity of intention and detachment from self, having always death before my eyes and the account that I must render of time lost, of talents wasted, of good omitted, of vain complacency in success, so fatal to the work of God. All for Jesus, all through Mary, all after thine example, O Patriarch, St. Joseph. Such shall be my watch-word in life and in death. Amen

This was followed by an exciting announcement, of the Emerging Leaders Program. Applications will need to be submitted by January 30, 2015. Candidates selected will have the opportunity to meet and learn with leaders in different occupations  and learn to excercise their faith. Kind of reminded of the Marianist LIFE camp (minus the actual camp) from high school. I am definitely interested in applying.  The rest of the time was spent with a little more mixing and mingling. I learned about other churches in the area I have not attended, but mostly excited about this communtiy.

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More information can be found on their Facebook Group:Young Catholic Leaders in Austin

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Detox Water: Refresh

Since it’s the start of a new year, and I certainly ate my fill of holiday fest food, I decided some detox water is necessary. For this simple and delicious recipe, I used Strawberries, Lemons, and Fresh Mint Leaves.

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Strawberries help replenish vitamins, and also contains anti-aging properties that helps with healthy skin.

Lemons help get your digestive track going and aid in cleaning out toxins

Mint help soothe stomach cramps and also aids in smoother digestion.

Simple, refreshing, and cleansing. Enjoy

Hello 2015 Inspire: The Best Is Yet To Come

Last night I said goodbye to the year 2014. I have to say it was a pretty good year. Saw snow for the first time, learned how to snow board, attended Music Fest 2014 in a never endings blizzard. Quickly learned I don’t like cold snowy weather.

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Started a new job, with one of the top tech companies. Finally moved into my studio and started living on my own … with no roommates. At first, all the changes were exciting and happening so fast. It was exhilarating becoming independent. You know, having my own place, doing whatever I wanted, not worrying about having pants or bras on, going to concerts and on hikes weekly, and paying my own BILLZ.

Austin is a great weird city, but after a few months of living here, I realized I was over the allure of the weirdness. Homesickness kicked in for tradition, rich culture, family and friends. Even though I mostly work Monday through Friday 9am to 6pm, I’m busy the entire time. I planned my grandma’s 80th birthday celebration from Austin.

In mid September I finally went home for a weekend to celebrate a few birthdays. I was really surprised how encouraging my friends and family were. They reminded me of all the hardships I went through, and that it was great that I was able to get away to make a better living for myself. Hearing those encouraging words from friends, and family helped me push through my homesickness. Occasionally, the homesick blues come and go.

One special person, really turned around my thoughts towards relationships, this year. If you’ve read some of my previous post, you’d know I run for the hills away from them. This person has been one of my best friends, can match my wit, but also encourages me to do my best in whatever I do. He’s by far the hardest working person I know and his success shows it. I admire him and I am also inspired. You know that phrase “don’t get to busy making a living, that you forget to make a life.” Although those last couple of months, of 2014, were probably his toughest for work, some how he managed to say hi to close friends and family every now and then.

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So going into 2015, I review some of my stats for this blog and I noticed some of the most viewed articles are about my faith. This year one thing I am focusing this blog on is to inspire. My Faith is what makes me who I am. Every article I write or picture board I post will be to inspire others. Not everything will be about faith, some about Texas, music, arts, culinary, and fashion. I encourage everyone to explore and find what ignites their passions and inspires them.

Every I take K-Love’s 30 day Challenge: To listen to nothing but Christian music for 30 days. It’s a great time of reflection and revelations for me. Some of my previous articles reveal a little about some of the hardships I have endured, over the years, and every year this challenge reminds me that walking by faith with God in my heart, I will overcome.

My job allows others inspiration to come true and sometimes make a good huge impact on the world or just for a one person. That inspires me to do my best in my work. Since I’m contracted one of my goals is to get directly hired. If that does workout, my alternate plan is to find a job back home in San Antonio. My family is everything to me and I never realized how close i was with them.

As you can probably see started writing this a few days ago and picked it up again today. Either way, hello 2015 my year to inspire.

Target Tuesday: Renter’s Wallpaper

My bedroom is starting to come together thanks to my Target Tuesday find. I live in a studio and really wanted to do something to the walls to help separate the rooms.  There’s a dividing wall and steps to the bedroom, but I wanted some decor.

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Since, I’m renting I didn’t want to paint, or put a bunch of holes in the wall. Strolling around Target I found these rolls of Renter’s wallpaper.

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“Devine Color Cable Stich Wallpaper-pond” is the title of the pattern I choose. They cover about a 25 square foot area. It’s made out of vinyl and it has an adhesive back. Pretty much like a gigantic sticker. All the one I the picture above ran about $29.99 in price. It took about 3 rolls of these to cover my wall. Had some left over so I also put it in my bathroom.   Painless, messless, so easy and pretty. I give it a double high-five.

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Music Monday: Overcomer by Mandisa

One of my favorite songs to hear on the radio, any time is “Overcomer” by Mandisa. Her message reminds me of the Bible verse from John 16:33 :

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world”

A joyous reminder not to give up in a time of anxiousness. To keep on fighting your battles because God is right there with us helping us get through life’s obstacles.

Honey Crisp Apple Pie Recipe

I really wanted to make y’all a YouTube video of my pie fillings but this year I jut haven’t had time. This year I will give y’all my pie filling recipes via blog post.

Every year my family assigns different dishes to bring to our Thanksgiving feast. However, for about the last 15 years I always get assigned the desserts. Specifically the pies. Probably because I’ve always been the one in my family that consumes the most pie. I’ve tried so many recipes and have perfected my own.

Click here for my Baking Basic Pie Crust recipe.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F

Ingredients:
4-5 Honey Crsip Apples
1/4 cups All-purpose flour (sifted)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

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*peel and slice apples to about 1/2cm thick.

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*in a separate bowl mix brown sugar, flour and cinnamon.

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*mix in Apple slices until evenly coated.

*squeeze lemon juice over seasoned Apple slices and stir until evenly coated.

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*pour apple slices into pie crust and cover with another pie crust or crumble mixture.

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*bake in oven at 425 degrees F for 10 minutes then bring temperature down to 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes

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*cool on a wire rack for about 30 minutes before serving

Music Monday: Sweater Weather

How’s that arctic blast treating y’all? Well this #MusicMonday , here is “Sweater Weather” by The Neighbourhood to warm your ears. Just my latest song obsession.

Music Monday: Don’t be such a Monday!

Recently my friend Shays’ boyfriends’ family tried to set him with a crazy girl. Yes, I say crazy cause of the way she reacted when he rejected her. So this guys family didn’t really take the time to get to know my friend Shay. She a level head girl, that’s funny and honest. Anyway, her boyfriend lives in a different city and they both kind of do their own thing when they’re apart. If they start talking, or flirting, or whatever you want to call with someone else, they don’t take it seriously.

Long story short, the girl that his family tried to set him up with lost it, when she found out about Shay. Started messaging her on Instagram, blowing up Shay’s email and her boyfriend’s phone. Finally after a week Shay’s boyfriend sent that girl a link to the music video for ” I don’t f*#% with You,” by Big Sean.

I just about fell off my chair laughing when I actually listened and read all the lyrics. It was mean but it finally did the trick to get that girl off their backs. Some ladies and even some guys just need to calm down. Don’t be so quick to react to situations like this. Usually it’s best for everyone if you don’t react all.