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the five love languages study

31 January 2014

Our marriage theme of this week is appreciation. 

I have been diligently working on my dissertation and Mr. Collier is a literal superhero. He has picked up the slack around the house and worked as hard as can be to make our lives feel "normal" while I am taking a back seat. It pains me to be in this position but I am so blessed to be able to rely on him to take the wheel. Marriage isn't always easy and it isn't always a 50/50 give and take. That's where the intention and love comes in. He does these things because he loves me and us. I'm so glad that he is mine!

What an awesome book study this month! For the whole month of January, Amberly and I teamed up to host the Meaningful Marriage Book Study focusing on The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Dr. Gary Chapman.

This was my third time through The 5 Love Languages book and I must admit that it brought new life to the text now that I've got two years of marriage under my belt. I secretly hoped that Mr. Collier would join me in on the study but that was far from going to happen! That made this study more challenging for me because I had to pay attention to my behaviors as they align with the love languages and gauge his reaction. By no means am I suggesting that I am assigning him love languages in secret but rather trying to pay more and be observant, in the present moment.

One of Mr. Collier's love language is Quality Time. In response to that, I've focused on listening more intently [which is really challenging for me] and avoid distractions during our conversations. Phone down, T.V. off, the whole nine yards. And I've noticed his response to my change in behavior has been positive. 

I am so glad that we selected this book in the Meaningful Marriage Study because we are going to be starting a whole new chapter of our lives in March. I'll be graduated with my Ph.D. and starting a new job on the other side of campus. Whereas right now we ride to work together, walk into work, go to our separate labs in adjacent buildings, eat lunch together and then head home. There are hugs and coffee breaks in the middle of the day as needed and they are wonderful. We hit those areas of quality time and physical touch in the middle of the workday. Starting in March, we won't have this moments. And I will miss them. 

I greatly anticipate reading your experiences with The 5 Love Languages and I pray that you consider joining us for the next three books:

Suggestions to help you get the most out of the upcoming study:

1. Request to join our Facebook Group where the majority of discussion happens. Ask questions of the group and share your ah-ha moments while reading through the text. Invite a new friend to the group for our next read! 

2. Get the book and take the time to read it within the month. 

3. If you are a blogger, grab our button and join us for the post link-up at the end of the month. 

4. Have fun!

three ingredient homemade popcorn

28 January 2014

I love snacks and any way that I can make them healthier, the better! Recently, I've been on a popcorn kick for my afternoon snack but the "simply salted" popcorn varieties with minimal ingredients can get expensive and can still have unnecessary junk in those little packets. 

I got a little creative with three simple ingredients: 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels and a pinch of sea salt. I couldn't believe how simple this is! Basically, you melt the coconut oil in a pan with a lid. Toss in two to three kernels as a tester for when the oil is ready. Once those suckers start poppin' throw in the 1/2 cup of kernels. Swish slightly and replace the pot to heat. 

Wait for the kernels to pop, pop, pop and you are ready to go! Be sure not to let your kernels burn on the bottom by additional swishing! 

What are you cooking up this week? Add your post links to the comments section below!!!

TGIF Blog Hop

24 January 2014

Welcome to the TGIF Hop!
Welcome back! 

Celebrate with us getting through the week by
 linking your blog and/ or your instagram below. 
This is a no rule blog hop, link up any post. Remember,
visiting other links is what makes a successful blog hop.
This hop runs from every week, from Friday morning to Tuesday morning.

 Would you like to be the next co-host and receive a spotlight?

Meet your hostess:
Three Sisters & UsComplete Bliss Blog     
                 Meet The Co Host                                      
Hi there! I'm Sarah from To Be Mrs. CollierAlthough my blog started off as a wedding planning blog, I'm all about living frugallyrecipesfaithpin-busting and clean, natural livingI blog about my curious life. I blog about things that I do that I think that you might find interesting or uplifting

Tweet about this HOP by clicking "tweet" below!!

Tweet: I just linked up at the TGIF Blog and Instagram Hop! Come join me! with Hosts @desireephillips and @kaitlynmarie003

be a goal setter with Brooklyn

23 January 2014

I can't say enough positive things about Brooklyn. She is spunky, honest and pretty much adorable! She is in the sponsor spotlight this month and if you haven't check out what she has to say...well then put your seatbelt on because she is taking over today! Ladies and gentleman [yes because there is likely just one of your kind following along], meet Brooklyn!

Hello lovelies! I'm Brooklyn from A Little Too Jolley. I'm a newlywed, with a passion for writing love notes, cupcakes, and blogging.

All over Facebook I'm seeing people who are not setting goals. They are choosing to do so for various reasons. DON'T BE ONE OF THEM!

I personally LOVE setting goals. Call me a crazy psycho nerd, but I think setting and reaching goals is so fun!

This past year has been the first time I have learned what really makes goal setting really work for me. You've got to figure out for you what works. Blog about your goals, print them off in a cute font and stick it on your wall,  buy a super cute goals journal to write in, create an excel sheet, buy a sticker chart, whatever works for you! 

Then, start small. I am terrible at long term goals, but I do set monthly goals every single month. 30 days seems much more doable then trying to do something for 365 days, can I get an Amen? Here are some of my favorite goals I set this past year. Most of my goals change every month, lots of them stick, some of them don't. 

-Write at least 1 handwritten letter a week.
-Pray every morning for 3 minutes.
-Keep a tender mercies journal. 
-Do something fun with friends at least once a week.
-Call someone in my family every week.
-Watch one Disney movie a month.
-Take a relaxing bath before school.
-Drink hot chocolate more.
-Read from the New Testament every day.

Be a goal setter! It's okay to set simple goals. Choose goals that will make you happy. DO more things that will make you happy.

Happy 2014.
Go party like a rockstar. And come visit me!

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colliers in the kitchen, crockpot corned beef

22 January 2014

crockpot corned beef brisket

One of our staple meals in our home is crockpot corned beef. It is easy and delicious! 

All you need is a beef brisket, a crockpot, some water and pickling spices.

  1. Trim the brisket of the layer of fat as best you are able.
  2. Place the brisket in the crockpot and rub with the pickling spices.
  3. Add water to cover the brisket 1/4 of the way.
  4. Cook for 8 hours on low in the crockpot. 
  5. Try not to eat it all!

Besides the traditional reuben sandwich (or pizza) you can pair with potatoes for a beef hash.

i am second.

20 January 2014

For the past week, I have been participating in the 22 day I AM SECOND challenge. As a fan of Duck Dynasty, I saw the I AM SECOND film done on the Robertson Family over Thanksgiving and I was instantly hooked. 

When I had the opportunity to enter in this 22 days video study, I jumped at the opportunity. This study features Christians who share their struggles, addictions, insecurities and failures during a short film and how accepting Jesus and putting themselves second, life starts to change. All because of HIM. It is amazing what happens when we surrender our lives to Christ and make our life about glorifying Him. 

I chose to be baptized in the Catholic Church when I was a second-grader but truly gave myself to Christ as a teenager. That's when my prayer life became real.   

There were times in my life as a teenager where I might not have made the best decisions physically and emotionally. I felt distance between myself and God in college but every time I would come back, He would take me in with open arms. 

I am not perfect. In fact, I'm so dang flawed it is crazy! But in same breath of being honest with my deficiencies, I have to be respectful of the fact that God created me and loves me unconditionally. Every hair, birth mark, mole, cell in my body, and tooth in my mouth...He made. And that is what constantly fascinates me about science. The deeper I've learned about how life works on a sub-cellular level, the more awe I experience and greater appreciation that it is impossible, literally impossible, for it all to exist without God. 

As you might imagine, this is not a popular point of view within the scientific community. But it is my belief. Being a Christian and in science is a struggle, but I would have never made it through without Him. It is amazing what God can do. 

I pray and encourage you to surrender your life to Him and make Him first. Your life will literally never be the same. 

I am Sarah and I Am Second. 

Colliers In Love-spending time together

17 January 2014

 photo Colliers-In-Love---800x200_zps89a34653.png

I love my husband. That is without a doubt. But despite how well we get along, marriage isn't always easy! I'm featuring our marriage in a new series called, you guess it, Colliers in Love. Every Friday I will post a picture of us at our breakfast date [yes we do breakfast every week] and share a tip or story about how we stay in love. Sound good? 

When we were first married, we attended a married people small group study at our church. We were the youngest couple, by far! Most were in their middle forties with kids in elementary school. Despite these differences, we learned some valuable lessons through those interactions, primarily, to spend time together

While most of the couples had young children, we were encouraged to set aside a special time together each week, one that was least likely to be interrupted. By establishing this "couple time" we could tap into the love language of quality time. We've discussed many an issue or strategized solutions over eggs and toast. Mr. Collier and I are blessed to work at the same place but in totally different areas so we spend tons of time together. But nothing is like breakfast for us. 

Why did we choose breakfast? Well, it is my favorite meal of the day, without question. And second, we considered our finances and family budget realizing that breakfast is a pretty inexpensive meal to at a restaurant. But a breakfast date doesn't work for every marriage. I suggest that you start by picking a day where you can set a standing appointment with your spouse or significant other...yes dating people can do this too! 

Would a happy hour at restaurant work better for your schedule? Perhaps you could pick a place in between your offices and meet there once a week? Or what about lunch on Sunday afternoons? Does it have to take place over a meal...well no. But the objective is to do something out of the ordinary routine of life. Your date time is special and your marriage is special. 

Let me know what you come up with!

Cowboy Chili Colliers in the Kitchen

15 January 2014

Cowboy Chili

One can of black beans, tomato sauce and chili beans
chopped white onion
turkey dinner sausage 
sprinkle cheese and scallion for garnish

two years and counting

14 January 2014

Two years ago today, I told Mr. Collier I'd join him forever as his wife. I ditched my family name and tacked his on with pride. We became a family that day, Collier "party of two." Our unstoppable team had been made into a covenant. Blessed by God. Glorifying to God.

There are so many things that I love about this man and I'm going to share them but not just because it is our anniversary.

my inner character

13 January 2014

mary poppins all don't know me. It's weird because you do KNOW a lot about me from reading along over the years. You don't know what my actual voice sounds like, my inflections on certain words or my mannerisms. It would be so interesting to hear your internal voice assign an accent to my written words.  

How would you describe yourself so that others could get a sense of who you are? 

Well, I've been thinking about this some. Actually, I'm working on my thesis and for some reason dissertation writing makes me think of weird distracting topics, thus I thought I should share. 

It might have taken me upwards of 27 going on 28 years to figure out how to describe myself:

a gangsta Mary Poppins

Slightly self-centered [come on, I blog for goodness sake!] but full of fun, incredibly organized, always prepared, lovable, witty and full of entertaining ideas! Oh! And I like rap music from the 1990's-2000's too--that's where the gangsta comes in. Turn on some Nelly, Usher, Fat Joe, Ludacris, R. Kelly or Lil Jon and the East Side Boys and I'm all over it. I just can't stop jukin'! Well, that's my randomness of the day! 

Who is your inner character? 

frugal + happy

10 January 2014

I am all about savings and being frugal. If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram then you would have seen my major coupon deals this past week. By the way, if you are into deals and savings, I post my favorite deals that I find from my go-to savings blogs on those outlets so follow along with me!

It all started on Sunday with some eggs for $0.99 on sale at Walgreens. I combined that with an Ibotta digital deal and score those babies [ pun intended] for $0.49!!! That's 4 cents per egg! Can anyone say SCORE!!!

      2, 1L Colgate Optic White Mouthwash                           $5.99 ea
      2, All Detergent                                                     $ 2 @ $6.99
       Sub Total                                                                       $18.97
       Extra Care Bucks Used                                                -$11.00
       Coupons used                                                                -$7.00

*amount I paid out of pocket*                                              $ 2.98 [which includes tax]
        Extra Care Bucks Earned                                             $ 6.00

   Transaction 1

      3 BIC Solei Bella Razor 3-packs                                   $ 6.34 ea

       Sub Total                                                                      $19.01
       Coupons used                                                               -$9.99

*amount I paid out of pocket*                                            $10.98 [which includes tax]
        Gift Card Earned                                                          $5.00

    Transaction 2

      4 StarKist Tuna Pouches                                                $0.99 ea
      1 Bic Pens                                                                      $1.27 ea
       Sub Total                                                                       $5.23
       Coupons used                                                               -$3.00

       Total                                                                              $2.02 [which includes tax]
*amount I paid out of pocket*                                              $0.00 
       Paid with $5 gift card from Transaction #1                -$5.00

        Gift Card Earned                                                          $2.98

Let me be very clear that my couponing philosophy is simple. I am all about savings, not over purchasing and letting things go to waste. Since I've dabbled in couponing for the past two years, I have learned a lot about what I should and shouldn't buy just because it is a "good deal" because chances are, it will cycle back around again. This adventure is about reducing the output while increasing the input...catch my drift?

Other coupon-related posts that I've written:

Do you coupon? What is keeping you from trying it?
 What would you like to know more about?

Why I went electric

08 January 2014

I absolutely, not even kidding, love my Philips Sonicare electric toothbrush! About a year ago, Mr. Collier has some dental health issues leading to mild periodontitis. At that time, we were flossing occasionally, using mouthwash sparingly and just doing our required brushing two times a day with a manual toothbrush.

The moment he came back from the dentist I went on Amazon and read some product reviews deciding on this exact electric toothbrush. I am over the moon with how clean this thing gets my gullet. As cliche as it sounds, my teeth feel like I just had a cleaning every time I brush. Since using the electric toothbrush , my dental check-ups have been stellar and Mr. Collier's condition has improved!!!

So why am I sharing this with you? Well, I couldn't help but notice that currently, Amazon is having a promotion where you can obtain this coupon for this exact toothbrush making it $29.95 for a killer toothbrush plus free shipping!!! This sucker is normally $69.99--a 42% savings!! Your pearly whites can thank me later.