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Foodie Friday: Ancient Ovens Restaurant Review – Saint Jo, TX

Saturday night, TJ took me to this place out in the middle of nowhere, called Ancient Ovens. It really is in the middle of nowhere. We took a wrong turn and ended up circling a driveway, middle of nowhere. In all reality, we really just turned short of the giant sign. We’ve heard such good things about Ancient Ovens, and they had just opened their lodge for the winter season. It’s supposed to have a great outdoor venue for warmer weather but our anniversary is in winter so I wasn’t going to complain. I had been bugging him about building our own pizza oven (thanks Pinterest), and he made the reservations for us to experience it first hand.

Ancient Ovens Pic

There’s a couple things to know before you go:

1. You have to make a reservation, unless you get very lucky and a party cancelled the day of.
2. They only serve water and tea but you can bring coolers of your own drinks which is great because there’s a couple of wineries near the premises.
3. It’s seated European style, so since we were a party of two, we sat at a four person table which meant we would be sat with another couple, which was a little intimidating.
4. Two courses are brought to you and two are set up buffet style.
5. The lighting was low for ambiance, so with my iPhone camera, my pictures aren’t the best quality.

Ancient Ovens 1

We were lucky enough to be sat with a young couple from Wichita Falls who didn’t mind chatting with us throughout the evening. The place was packed and they told us they were able to squeeze in without a reservation because of a cancellation.

The first course was Spinach Dip and Artisan bread. I was worried about it because TJ isn’t a big Spinach Dip fan but it was delicious. It was also the first course where you serve yourself. The bread could have been warmer in my opinion, but the dip was fresh out of the oven and bubbling hot. The great thing about Ancient Ovens is that you can keep going back for more during the buffet courses.

Ancient Ovens 2

The second course was “Italian Teardrops”. They serve you this one and TJ was not a fan but I could have eaten the whole pan. They’re little pasta purses stuffed with green olives and cream cheese, thrown in the oven and cooked until they’re crispy and perfect.

Ancient Ovens 3

Third was the pizza. Served buffet style, immediately pulled from the 700-800 degree oven, the pizzas cook within one to two minutes so no matter how many people they’re serving, you’re never waiting on pizza in line. It was a constant cycle and they worked as a well oiled machine. Fifteen to twenty different types of pizza. Plus, you get to keep going back for more.

Ancient Ovens 4

Lastly, was a dark chocolate calzone. You get two pieces which is so perfect because it’s rich enough where you don’t need more. You get all of this for $20 a person. It’s not so much a kid atmosphere, you have to pay extra for children. It was delicious, perfect for families getting together or double dates. We will definitely be going back.

Ancient Ovens 5

Post Written By:
buttonHey! I’m Casey and I blog over at A Girl & Merle about life, kitchen renovations and everything in between. I love any and every food I can get my hands on, spending time with girlfriends, being a ginger, and dogs galore.
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Planner Organization: Tips and Tricks

Planner Organization…my tips and tricks!

As a third year college student, it is important for me to be well organized. There’s exams, homework, study sessions, and projects I have to keep track of. On top of that, I have blog posts to write up, videos to film, and concerts to go and photograph for a media website that I work for. I’ve also recently started working with my college’s newspaper as a photographer, so I am really busy. Having a planner helps me to write everything down and not forget any deadlines.

Planner Organization: Tips and Tricks

I’ve been using a planner off/on for quite a few years now and I’ve only just found a system that works for me. It’s still a work in progress, as I find new ideas all the time through Pinterest. But here’s some Planner Organization tips and tricks that I’ve learned so far that you could incorporate into your current or new planner.

Planner_NotesandMarkers

Tip #1: Use a color system!
Since the school year just started for me, I don’t have a lot of stuff filled out or used, but I do have my color code set up. My work schedule is written in purple, concerts I’m going to/photographing are in red, blog posts are in magenta/pink, and YouTube videos are in green. I then have my class schedule highlighted in different colors. This helps me keep track of different assignments for my different classes. Instead of having to write the class name next to the assignment, I can just highlight it using the color code I created.

Planner_January

Tip #2: Make To-Do Lists every day!
I use the weekly part of my planner to plan out my To-Do Lists in detail (I use a bullet point system). Here I will use sticky notes to write extra information like passwords, meetings, or random information. I also keep the ‘Don’t Forget’ notepad on my desk, and use it to emphasize the broad items on my list.

Planner_DontForget

Tip #3: Use the Notes Section!
I use the notes sections in my planner mainly for my blog. I write down my social media and blog stats at the end of each month. This helps me see the growth on a month to month basis. If you aren’t a blogger, you could always use the notes section for something else. You can use it for grades, your budget, or even write down some good things that happened that month.

Being organized doesn’t have to be hard or stressful. I enjoy making my planner personal and using lots of color to make it fun. Planners and To-Do Lists keep me productive and get all of my assignments done on time.

Post Written By:
IMG_9178Brittaney Penney
Hi! I’m Brittaney, a 21 year old lifestyle blogger, vlogger, and photographer. I am a Digital Media student at the University of Houston, where I work with The Daily Cougar, our student run newspaper, as a photographer. I’m also a writer/photographer for the website, Hit It Off Media, where I photograph concerts and write album reviews. I’m a lover of peppermint tea, a good book, Christmas lights, and blasting One Direction on road trips with my best friends.

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Tech Tuesday: 7 Posts about Blogging you should Read

This week for Tech Tuesday I am keeping it simple and giving you some resources for a variety of topics! These 7 posts are great for bloggers at any level, whether you need a refresher or are just getting started.

techtuesday

 

25 Tips to Become a More Productive Blogger from Blog Clarity - I know I could always use tips and reminders for productivity. There never seems to be enough time in the day to do all the things that need to get done!

How To Write A Blog Post In 15 Minutes Or Less from The Sits Girls - Again with the time saving! Banging out a post in 15 minutes?? Thats the way to blog!

How to Embed a Pinterest Board on Your WordPress Blog from Snap Creativity - If you have a wordpress blog, this is something that definitely comes in handy! Especially if you have a pinterest board dedicated to your own blog.

Tips for Automation from Blog Chicka Blog - Automation = time saving = Happier bloggers! There are some seriously helpful tips in this post! Implementing even just a few of them will help knock a couple things off your daily or weekly to do list!

Why You Should Share Content from Other Bloggers from Creating & Co - Sharing = Caring right? I love this post that talks about the importance of sharing others content (with no strings attached).

How to Make Your Blog Posts Comment Friendly from Logan Can – Comments! We’d all like more of them! Definitely some great tips for making people WANT to comment on your blog posts!

The One Thing You Must Do to Every Image Uploaded to Your Blog from Gimme Some Oven – I can not tell you how many times I’ve run into this! PLEASE… if you can read only one of these posts, this is the one to read! This one little change to how you blog can make a big difference!

 

And there you have it! 7 posts on a variety of subjects that will help you become a better blogger!

Blogger of the Month: A Clean & Organized Home

Having kids means having mess after mess, it means walking on toys in the middle of the night, finding legos in the bottom of your purse, barbies in the back of your truck, the list goes on & on. Since I’m a single parent & running a house alone while raising my two children, I figured out very quickly it was important to have a clean house & be able to keep it that way.

A clean & organized home just runs better, it makes my days easier, they are less stressful, I know where everything’s at, my kids are aware of their part in our daily chores & everyone is just happier. The hardest part of getting your home organized is that first step, it can be overwhelming at first but it will be totally worth it in the long haul.

The first step is to purge, tackle one room at a time, don’t overwhelm yourself, it’s not going to all get done in one day! I always make two piles, one for donate or sell to my local consignment shop & one for trash/recycle. Be sure to include closets & cabinets as well in your purge, you’d be surprised at what you will find hiding in the back of a closet!

A clean and organized home

Once purging is done it’s time to organize, my motto is everything has a place & there is a place for everything. You can use bins, baskets, evening hanging organization (this was perfect for my daughter’s closet). I love bookcases or shelves that have bins, I love to label too, each bins gets a label, so you & your children know where everything goes.

A great way to keep drawers organized is to buy small containers or use a tray similar to a silverware tray, we use one of these for my daughters clips & rubber bands for her hair & it’s the perfect size for her bathroom drawer!

Closets are a great way to store bulky items, vacuums, extra linens, items that don’t get used daily, etc. However, it still needs to be all nice & neat as well as accessible, fold linens & store them all one shelf, place heavier or bulky items neatly on the floor.

Once your major purging & organizing is done, doing daily chores or housework to maintain a clean house is easy! About once or twice a month I do what I call a quick purge, clean out the art/home work cabinet, grab any clothes that don’t fit or my children have out grown, etc. I dislike clutter or mess, our kitchen is our most used area so I make sure on a daily basis that the counter tops are kept clear & clean. Along with daily chores, I’m always staying on top of dishes & laundry, doing at-least one rotation a day so it doesn’t build up.

Keeping your house organized & clean doesn’t have to be an exhausting chore, get the kids involved too! Make it fun, my daughter loves when we clean up the play room together, I turn some music on & we get busy, you will both enjoy it & it gets cleaned faster.

Post Written By:
Jessica from I Heart Motherhood
Hi ya’ll! I’m Jessica, a 28 yr old, single, working, mother of two. I love my very busy-on the go life, I run my own cleaning business, the blog full time as well as keep up with two little’s, my oldest is Autistic & I have a very energetic toddler princess! I am Texas born & raised, a huge sweet tea lover & wanna be photographer. My family, kids, life, God, shopping, blogging, cleaning & organizing are just a few of my favorite things!

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