Four Generations

The engagement ring that I now wear has been passed down from generation to generation in my family.
It belonged to my great grandmother and a few months before Javier and I got engaged, the ring was passed down to me.

This ring is from the early 1940’s so when it was given to me, it was not in the best condition. It needed to be repaired and adjusted in more than one way but to know that I was trusted with this ring meant everything to me.
A ring is just a ring but to know that the generation of women who wore it before me stayed with their husbands until death, it’s very heavy.

When I received this ring, I knew this was the ring I wanted to wear throughout my marriage.
Prior to the engagement, Javier had the engagement ring and wedding band repaired, resized, added diamonds, polished and cleaned for the proposal.
I had only saw the rings in the original state so when Javier proposed, I was mesmerized at how beautiful the rings turned out to be.

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I look down at my ring and think of the dedication and hard work the women who wore it before me put into their marriage and how their examples have shown me the  capable wife I can and will become.

“Who can find a capable wife?
Her value is far more than that of corals.
Her husband trusts her from his heart,
And
he lacks nothing of value.
She rewards him with good, not bad,
All the days of her life.”

– Proverbs 31:10-12

With love,

– R. Vargas

Our One Year Anniversary

Earlier this month, Javier and I celebrated our one year anniversary and it was the most thoughtful and considerate date Javier has ever planned for us.

Once I walked inside his house, he had me close my eyes and led me outside where a candlelit table was waiting for us.

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Once I sat down, Javier served me steak and asparagus that he cooked specifically for this occasion.

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We talked and enjoyed each others company and ate our delicious meal and then Javier excused himself to go to the bathroom.
When he came back he brought out a card and told me that what it contained came from a letter he wrote three years ago but was not able to share it with me at the time because the time was not right. (I will continue this story in another post.)

I reached out for the card to read but he told me he would like to read it to me. It was the loveliest card he had ever wrote to me and even though I would like to keep what it said private, the words were strong enough to make someone cry.

When he was finished reading, I stood up to give him a hug and as we embraced I felt Javier shift and reach in his pocket and watched as he kneeled down and said, “Rocio, will you marry me?”

I smiled but was in shock as I looked at the ring in the box. When he stood up to place the ring on my finger, I said very loudly, “FINALLY!”
It has taken so long to get to this point in our lives but we are here.
We are engaged!

As we embraced, we heard loud screaming from behind the fence that startled us both and all at once we saw someone fall over the fence and two others walk through the gate. Once they got closer to the light, I realized it was Javier’s brother and two best friends.

Apparently Javier had planned for our best friends to celebrate with us after he proposed. He made a huge dinner and invited them over to sneak in the house while him and I had dinner in his backyard. His best friends apparently couldn’t wait and snuck outside behind the fence and recorded Javier reading that card to me and proposing.
After we all went inside, I was greeted by my best friends with balloons, cake, bottles, gifts and bouquets.

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We all celebrated together before we made our announcement public and it was very nice to live in the moment and be surrounded by our loving and supportive best friends.
We received so much love and kind words after we finally announced our engagement and Javier and I are both so very fortunate and thankful for everyone who has taken time to congratulate us.

While I am a very private person, I will share a few posts in the next few weeks about our relationship and how far we have come together, how special my ring is, our wedding plan and how my life will be changing as I prepare to become a wife.

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We are beyond thankful for all the family, friends and even strangers that have been so kind and supportive of us as we plan for our future together.

Thank you for reading,

R. Vargas

Blueberry Loaf

love blueberries in my baked goods and I am so excited to share this recipe with you all.
Not only is it easy to prep and bake but it is delicious!

Instructions:

  • 1/2 cup of butter or margarine (softened)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 3/4 of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 cup of fresh or frozen blueberries

Note: Blueberries can be substituted for raspberries as well. If using frozen fruit, use without fully thawing to avoid discoloration of the batter. 

Directions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, cream the softened butter and sugar.
  2. Beat in eggs, milk and vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine salt, flour and baking powder. Once combined, mix into creamed mixture.
  4. Gently fold in blueberries.
  5. Pour batter into 9 x 5 inch loaf pan and bake at 350 for 50 to 55 minutes.

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Enjoy and let me know if you try this recipe!

With love,

– R. Vargas

 

Homemade Pesto

If you’re anything like me, you love Pesto but have always been afraid to make it on your own.
I used store bought for years and finally caved and bought a basil plant a few weeks ago in an attempt to keep it growing and finally make Pesto from scratch.

It is incredibly easy and cheaper than store bought and you can even substitute the pine nuts for chopped walnuts since pine nuts aren’t very easy to find.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of fresh basil leaves (No stems)
  • 2 tablespoons of pine nuts or chopped walnuts
  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • salt & pepper

Directions:

Combine basil leaves, pine nuts or walnuts, garlic, olive oil, and parmesan cheese in a food processor or food chopper.

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Once everything is blended and combined, add salt & pepper to your liking.

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Store in jars and seal tight and keep in the fridge if you are storing for later or use as sauce for pastas, flatbreads, pizza, or toss in pasta!

With love,

-R. Vargas

Slow Cooker Pork Sirloin

Hi everyone!

On today’s blog, I am sharing the easiest pork sirloin recipe with you that’s simple, tasty and budget friendly.
I typically cook at home to save from eating out so much but there are times when I am buying ingredients for a new recipe and it can be costly. This recipe won’t break the bank and you more than likely will already have the ingredients at home.

Ingredients:

  • Pork Sirloin (Mine weighed 1.44 lbs)
  • Lemon Pepper Seasoning
  • Garlic Salt Seasoning
  • Fajita Seasoning
  • 7 oz. can of canned Jalapeños (Green Pickled Sliced Jalapeño Peppers)
  • 1 small onion

Directions:

Place your pork on a cutting board.

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Make slits in your pork sirloin but make sure not to cut all the way through and then flip over and make slits again but in the opposite direction.

Next you will sprinkle your Lemon Pepper Seasoning, Garlic Salt, and Fajita Seasoning  all over the pork. Make sure you rub and massage seasonings into the slits.

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Once you have finished, slice your onion and place the slices into the slits.

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Place your pork sirloin into your slow cooker and open your can of Jalapeños and pour the juice all over the pork and into the slow cooker. If you’re thinking this will leave your pork very spicy, you are wrong. This adds to the flavor and will help the pork become very juicy. If you are still uneasy about the Jalapeño juice, add 1/4 cup of water or less to help dilute. I also add a few Jalapeños from the can and place them in between the slits as well.

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Cover and place on High for 4 to 6 hours or Low for 7 to 8 hours.
Pull apart with fork and let it absorb all the juice and serve however you would like.
You can add BBQ and make pulled pork sandwiches or add into a baked potato, make tacos or quesadillas, or serve just as it is with a few sides.

With love,

– R. Vargas

Pretty Planner Party

For the last two years, I have thrown a Pretty Planner Party for a group of friends that enjoy crafting and planning in their planner as much as I do.
We get together and enjoy good & wholesome association, we share washi tape, stickers, coloring pencils, tips and tricks, etc.

Typically I hold the party at a public place but this year I was fortunate enough to host the party at someone’s home which gave me a chance to decorate and plan a menu. I bought the majority of my decorations at The Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only Store and I highly recommend these two stores if you are ever planning any type of party.

Here are a few pictures I took:

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This was my third year hosting the Pretty Planner Party and I feel like this was the best year so far.

I’m very grateful for the turnout and everyone who brought a dish and supplies to share!

With love,

– R. Vargas

Indoor Tulip Tutorial

Spring is right around the corner and soon flowers will be blooming!

Tulips are perennials, meaning they return year after year when planted into the ground but if you are not able to plant them in the ground and still would like to grow them, this is a perfect tutorial for you.

All you need is a vase, decorative gems or pebbles, water and of course tulip bulbs.

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Place a few gems or pebbles in your glass vase and set a few aside. Next take your bulbs and position them so that the pointy end is facing up.

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Take the rest of your gems or pebbles and align them around the bulbs to help set them in place.

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Take 1/2 a cup of water and pour into your vase until the water reaches right under the bottom of the bulbs. Try and keep the bulbs as dry as possible while pouring the water in the vase.

Place in a sunny location indoors and after a few days, you will notice the stem start to sprout and the bottom of the bulb will take root into the water. The roots will look like thin white strings so if you start to see this after a few days, your tulip is growing!

I will update pictures over the next few weeks but this easy tutorial will help you to get started!

With love,

– R. Vargas