Tag Archives: corinne

Dear creamy, cheesy, white chicken chili,

Uh hi. You’re delicious.

Now, I’m not much of a cook. I can bake cookies and brownies all day. If there’s meat involved though, I’m out. My boyfriend handles that part. On the other hand, I am borderline obsessed with Pinterest. And I’ve tried making a new goal for myself. The time I would normally spend looking at cool stuff I would probably never do on Pinterest, is now time that I spend doing said stuff I never thought I would do. Makes sense right? I thought it was silly how much stuff I had on my boards that I wasn’t doing, and instead of being active and working on projects and crafts and food, I was just finding MORE stuff. So this new mantra led me to cooking dinner for my family. I had just gotten a pretty hefty tip at a show (check out all of my concert dates at FionaCorinne.com and maybe you can help feed my family!) so I decided to do something nice for my parents (and I guess my siblings). After narrowing it down by A LOT, I figured out I really needed to do something in the crockpot. Not only would it be nice to be able to do other things on my only day off, but I also didn’t want to break my mom’s stove top somehow. It came down to these delicious looking ribs and chili. Chili won, only because it is FREEZING in upstate New York right. I needed something hearty.

Now, like I have mentioned (repeatedly), I’m not much of a cook. But I also found like 12 different delicious looking recipes and I couldn’t decide. So I made up my own recipe. I took my favorite parts out of some, and used the average base to go off of. And not to toot my own horn (ha, who am I kidding), it was came out FREAKING PHENOMENAL. I’d eat that stuff all day. Except it was almost all gone that night. Because my family really likes food.

I figured I would go all out, so in addition to the chili, I made fresh strawberry lime-ade and churro cheesecake bars (I’ll post links, don’t worry). I also made Jiffy corn muffins (I was gonna make corn bread from scratch, but we’ve had those mixes sitting around forever and I did in fact have other things to do).

So… are you ready for the recipe? Mine fed 7 of us with maybe 2 bowls of leftovers. We like to eat though, so use your best judgement. 

1. 2 lb of frozen, boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I honestly found the smallest package I could and went for that… it was 3 breasts and it was a perfect amount). Throw those in the bottom of a crockpot.

2. Add the produce right on top of the chicken. The nice thing with this, if you don’t like something, leave it out! I used:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cans of beans (if you like bean heavy chili, use more, if you like it light on the beans, use less. I used great northern beans, black beans and kidney beans)
  • 2 cans of corn (I rinsed them because I didn’t want it to taste like a corn chowder or something)
  • 2 cans of Rotel tomatoes
  • 1/2 can of chopped green chiles (I was going to use a whole can, but Rotel tomatoes have some chiles in them so I didn’t think it was necessary)

3. Add seasonings! This was honestly whatever I could find in my spice cupboard, so feel free to experiment.

  • 2 tsp cumin (I didn’t have any, and left it out completely. It came out fine)
  • 1/2-1 tsp oregano
  • 2 cloves of fresh, crushed garlic
  • 3 TBS ranch dressing mix (pretty much a whole packet)
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (you can use more, I don’t like too much kick)
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • a dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp seasoned salt
  • 1/2 tsp celery salt
  • cilantro, salt and pepper to taste

4. Throw 16 oz of cream cheese (in manageable little hunks) on there and you’re almost done!

5. Stir it all together, and throw that sucker on low heat for 6-8 hours. I got started later than I planned, so I started it on high and turned it down later, just so I knew it would be done.

6. Stir it occasionally. I think because I had mine on high, I got a lot of gunk up at the edges so I was kind of watching out for it (to save myself from some intense dishes later). If the chicken doesn’t shred when you stir it (mine started to, but I was still worried it wasn’t going to be done it time) you can take it out and do it with a fork. I scooped the breasts out on a plate and tore them up with two forks. It took just a few extra minutes and I had peace of mind.

7. About an hour before you plan to serve dinner, you will have to use the stove top. I know, I know, I wasn’t happy about it either. But it’s not hard, I promise! Mix these together to make a basic roux:

  • 3 TBS butter
  • 3 TBS flour
  • SLOWLY add about 1 cup of milk (or cream, whatever you feel like using)
  • I added a chicken bouillon cube just for some extra chicken flavor.

8. Once that has been simmering for a few minutes, add it to the crockpot. Stir it around. It didn’t make a HUGE difference, but I would rather have thick chili than soupy chili.

9. Once the roux has been mixed in, I added some extra creaminess.

  • 1/2-1 cup of sour cream
  • 12 slices of American cheese (a few recipes called for 24 white slices, but I used yellow, and I used less. I didn’t want the finished product to taste like American cheese)

10. We topped ours off with sour cream and grated Colby Jack cheese. Freaking yum.

So. For a musician who lives on cookies instead of real food, what do you think? Let me know what you did differently, and how yours came out! This was the perfect cold weather meal, and it was so nice to sit with my family at the table and hang out over something I actually made (and didn’t burn).

Enjoy,

Fiona

PS. Here’s a link to the strawberry lime-ade (it’s for cherries, but I used frozen strawberries and it came out awesome… but be prepared to take some time. Maybe I just have an awful strainer, or a crappy blender, but it took FOREVER to strain it) and to the churro cheesecake bars!

PPS. My kitchen is for dancing. What’s your favorite dinner prep song? Do you have a kitchen playlist? Let me know in comments!

How to Throw a Kick-Ass Zombie Party for Less than $100 in 6 (Kind of) Easy Steps.

I’m going to start this post off by saying that Halloween is my favorite holiday. It’s always been close, but this year, it definitely pushed to the top. So when I go all out, and get a little weird about October 31st, that’s why. I also want to let everyone know that I work at a party store. So I do get a discount on supplies and I do get paid to think about Halloween for the entire month of October. Actually, my party has been almost fully planned since August, when we started setting Halloween up. And I don’t even care if that’s weird.

So. You want to throw a zombie party. I’m sure there are people out there who think they can throw on some ripped clothes and a lil bit of fake blood and be good to go. NOT ME. I go all out. I love planning themed parties, and Halloween is probably the best excuse ever to do that. With zombies getting so popular (I refuse to ever have a vampire themed party, so we’re going to ignore their growing popularity), I thought what better a theme than zombie apocalypse?! There’s seriously so much you can do with it. This post is gonna be long, because there’s a lot that went into it. You can definitely choose not to do all of it if you’re not as invested in the holiday as I am. Okay. Here we go.

1. INVITATIONS. In this day and age, actual invitations are hard to come by. With texts and Facebook and all these new fangled apps, you just don’t see them. But I wanted to be as realistic as possible. And that means, when the zombies come, there aren’t gonna be Facebook invites to a safe house. I tried to hand out as many invitations as possible, but the people I don’t see regularly DID get an e-copy… I know it’s kind of cheating, but they got the idea. Here’s what I used as my invitation:

“URGENT

Dear anyone,

If you’re reading this, that means you’ve made it through the zombie apocalypse. Almost everyone I know is gone, and we are lucky to have made it this far. In hopes that someone is reading this: Please meet me and any other survivors at a secure location, November 1st around 7:00pm. I have found a safe house at [your address]. There is some food and water here, but we never know how long any of that will last.

A few basic rules of survival:

  1. Come in costume, either disguised as a zombie or dressed in a traditional Halloween costume.
  2. Double tap.
  3. Please bring a snack to share, we are running low on provisions.
  4. Anyone you have joined on your journey is welcome, but DO NOT bring anyone who has been infected to this meeting.

If anyone finds this, I beg you to consider combining our forces. We are already outnumbered by zombies, and I desperately need your help. After listening to the dial tone of the phone, the static on the radio, and the sound of the undead moaning, this is my last attempt to reach out to anyone still alive. If you plan on meeting me and anyone else out there who has found this letter, please respond. My quiet phone is waiting for your message, at [your phone number]

Be safe,

    Fiona”

And that’s how it’s done. I used an old fashioned type writer-esque font, and found a picture of a blood splatter that I put in the background. It has everything you need in an invite, just way more creative than the norm. If you don’t want to use a survivor letter, I always just try to include the date, the time, the location, and an RSVP/more information number. I also try to include a few extras in all my invites, like (for Halloween), come in costume, please bring a snack to share, and that friends are welcome. You can definitely tweak this to fit your needs. This cost me almost nothing to print and hand out, but even if you have to go to a place like Kinkos (if that even exists still), it’s not going to be very expensive.

2. MUSIC AND MOVIES. My next step was to do the small stuff first. Decorations and food are serious commitments, so I wanted to get the music and movies out of the way. There is a ton of options for music. You can just put on a Halloween Pandora station. You could put on the radio or dance music. I wanted to make this is realistic as possible, so I opted for zombie movie soundtracks. The best ones I found were 28 Days Later, Night of the Living Dead, and The Walking Dead soundtrack. I also put a few songs on from movies like Zombieland, Warm Bodies, Shaun of the Dead and House of 1000 Corpses. 28 Days Later, Night of the Living Dead, and Walking Dead were awesome, because they were just creepy sounding songs, with a zombie theme. I included the other movies because they had lyrics and were a little more recognizable, and you always want diversity. Plus it was very amusing to see a few guys singing the Ghostbusters theme at the top of their lungs. I hooked my laptop up to my surround sound system and put it on shuffle. Aaand music, check. As for movies, I didn’t make plans to make everyone sit down and watch a zombie movie. At a party, you never know what people are going to want to do. Through my experience though, I’ve learned to set a few pre-selected (always pre-selected. You never want that awkward half an hour of people debating over what movie to watch. Plus, this way you get to still call the shots, make sure it’s appropriate for everyone, and avoid any disagreements on what counts as a “zombie movie”) movies out on the table, just in case when it dies down, people just want to crash on the couch. I chose Zombieland and Warm Bodies as comedies, Dawn of the Dead as borderline scary (not everyone agrees on super scary movies, so be careful when you’re choosing your films. I put on a scary movie at one of my first parties and there was a kid here who had panic attacks when he watched scary movies so he sat in the kitchen alone. Needless to say, after this, I tried to choose more universal movies), and a Zombie Classic box set for the traditional zombie movies (it included Night of the Living Dead, Revenge of the Zombies, Oasis of the Living Dead, and White Zombie). I had all of these movies on hand, and found free downloads for the movie soundtracks, so music and movies was free for me. If you don’t have the movies, chances are you can find them online to either stream or download.

3. GAMES. Now, this is the first part that I get a little crazy. Some people host parties and just let people mingle and hang out. I love to mingle! Really, I do! But I also get a little bossy and make people play games that I planned. And even if people grumble and bitch about not wanting to get out of their seats, they ALWAYS have fun. Full participation required, and my friends have started to learn not to come if you’re not gonna join in. Through the years, I’ve found a ton of games to play. Traditional Halloween games, and just general games you can tweak to almost any theme. Anyways, I had a ton of game ideas and narrowed them down to just a few. Here’s my list.

  • Zombie Charades. I found this online. Give someone a celebrity, and they have to act out how they think that person would act if they became a zombie. It’s a fun idea, but I didn’t use this, just because even with distinct features, a lot of zombies act the same. It would be hard to differentiate. Plus, getting a large group to quiet down enough for a full game of charades is hard.
  • Guess Who. This is an awesome ice breaker, but at this point, almost everyone who comes to my house for parties is practically family with the rest of the guests. I put monsters, scary movie characters, and any other Halloween themed person I can think of on index cards. You tape them on the back of each guest when they come in, and they have to ask yes or no questions to figure out who they are. I make a rule like, “You can only ask each person 2 questions” ’cause kids kept asking their best friends questions and not talking to anyone else. This game is super universal. I’ve used it during Halloween, at an 80s party, and any theme that has people associated with it really. Super easy.
  • Bobbing for Donuts. It’s not as soggy as it sounds. I tie white powdered donuts on a string and hang them in a doorway. Guests need to either stand or kneel (depending on height) and get the full donut off the string, without dropping any! The trick is, tying the donuts just a little above their mouth, and making sure they don’t use hands. This game has been a huge success, but I found some other games I wanted to do instead, so it didn’t make the cut this year.
  • Zombie Musical Chairs. I’m so proud of this creation… It’s not exactly musical chairs. There’s no music, and it’s a game played throughout the evening. I downloaded an air raid siren sound, and made ‘Safe Zone’ signs to put on chairs. The game worked like this: Every time the air raid siren was played, it meant the zombies were coming. Everyone had to be in a chair labeled ‘Safe Zone’ or they would become zombies. Every time the siren played, there was a mad scramble to get a chair. As the night went on, I added the rule if you’re already sitting, you need to switch rooms. People kept sliding one seat over and it was not the exact effect I was going for. After that rule went into effect though, the game was awesome. People were screaming and diving and sitting on each other and all the fun parts of musical chairs, zombie style. As the night got later, I removed the safe zone signs, so there became more and more zombies. Another way you could play is have the people who became zombies earlier in the game just take up a seat. It was easy and it was a blast.
  • Candy Corn Guess. This is pretty simple. I put candy corn in a jar, wrote a sign that said “Please write your name and # guess and put your slip in the cup.” I left blank pieces of paper and a pen out, and let them at it. Towards the end of the night, I checked their guesses and whoever was the closest got to take the candy corn home. I’m sure you could do it with another, less gross, candy, but candy corn IS a pretty big symbol of Halloween. Plus, Wegmans sells unusual flavors of candy corn, like Blackberry Cobbler. And that is definitely not gross.
  • Scavenger Hunt. Also pretty simple. I wrote clues on index cards, hid them, had a prize, and split everyone into 3 teams. Being the nerd/songwriter that I am, all of my clues rhymed, but that’s not necessary. I had 13 hints for each team, and they were hidden all over the main level of my house. Places like the stove, the stereo speakers, under the rug in the front hall… I made sure they all led to the same place, so only one team could win. In the final place I hid enough boxes of pumpkin shaped Peeps for each team member. I had so much fun sitting back (finally) and watching everyone run all over trying to figure out my clues.
  • Zombie Apocalypse Situation cards. This one was easy and it was good when the first few people were getting there and we were waiting for people to get out of work, or get there “fashionably late” (PS, that’s lame, no one does that, and as a party host, I hate it). I wrote out different situations of where you were when the zombie apocalypse happened, and each team of partners had to say exactly what they would do to save themselves or their family. I had things like “It’s the middle of a wintery night, and you can’t stay in your neighborhood. You have a husband/wife, an 8 year old, a 3 year old and the family dog. What do you do?” or “You are on a family vacation in Disney World when your family back home calls with news of zombies. Where do you go?” or even “You’re on a business trip halfway across the country when you see zombies on the news. Your husband/wife isn’t answering calls. What do you do?” Coming up with the situations was fun, but did require a lot of creativity. My mom and dad judged who had the best answer, and the team that won got a head start in one of the later games.
  • Balloon Pop. This is an easy game that’s good for laughs. I blow up a bunch of balloons with slips of paper on them, and then have everyone partner up. Each pair has to pop balloons between their backs by linking arms and squeezing. Sometimes it scares people, or sometimes the balloons won’t pop, and it’s very fun to watch (and participate in). Normally I put numbers on the slips in each balloon, and then that’s how many pieces of candy they get. To go with the zombie theme this year, I put “SAFE” and “INFECTED” on the slips of paper. Instead of it being a race like usual, I had everyone go one balloon at a time. And each round, a team got out because they were ‘infected’. Last pair standing won.
  • Bobbing for Apples. Classic. It’s not a Halloween party without it. Since it’s usually cold and rainy on Halloween in Rochester, I do it inside. It’s a big risk, especially if you knew my friends. I put down a cheap plastic table cloth, a fuck ton of beach towels, and just go for it. Water does get a splashed a bit, but I’ve never had an disasters. I used to go by whoever had the fastest time won, but I have one friend who is a beast (like seriously, he must practice in his spare time or something. It’s ridiculous), so that didn’t work. This year I went by who had the biggest apple. It worked because the bigger ones are harder to get, and once you’re in that cold water with your eyes closed, there’s no knowing what apple you’re gonna get.
  • Just normal ol’ party games. Just in case it gets a little slow, I always have traditional party games set out. For Halloween I put a Ouija board on my coffee table for people to goof off with. I also have things like Apples to Apples, Uno, a deck of cards, and Catchphrase ready in case it slows down or people are feeling awkward. No one played them this year, which I think means I did a good job keeping them busy.
  • Costume contest! I mean, really. It has to happen. My parents were the judge, but you could also make everyone vote. I got skull shaped cups ($1 each), filled them with candy and labeled them for each category. I did Funniest, Scariest, Sexiest, Most Original, Best Tradition Halloween Costume, and Best Zombie. We all got a few laughs and it was fun to see what everyone came up with.
  • Coloring Station. This isn’t really a game, but it was kinda fun. When things were slow, people sat down at the table, chatted and colored a few zombie themed coloring pages. I had a bunch of crayons, and it cost about $6 to get a bunch of the sheets printed.

So those are a few games. If you don’t like them, I hope I gave you a few ideas for something you can use. Also, you have no reason not to like them because they’re pretty much awesome. And cheap! A pack of pre-packaged donuts is only a few bucks, I spent a few more dollars on scavenger hunt prize candy and on the candy corn, I spent 2.99 on a package of balloons (plus I used leftovers from past parties), my bobbing for apples tub was 9.99 (but I did manage to find a coupon) and I got apples from a local farm stand.

4. FOOD. No party is a good party unless it has food. I know this. I asked people to bring a snack to share, so I planned on having bags of chips on the table. But I also had a few cool zombie ideas as well. I got fake bloody fingers at my party store and threw those in the potato chip bowl, just to freak people out. I had corn chips and salsa, to please the masses. I also had a few boxes of donut holes (Halloween tradition!). I got a bunch of mini M&Ms and put them in a bowl. With the bowl though, I got some old prescription bottles (ran them through the dishwasher, I didn’t want to drug anyone) and labeled them “Vaccine.” People still got candy but it went with the zombie theme.  I also served popcorn, but put red food coloring in the butter to make it look bloody. One of my best friends make mummy hot dogs (hot dogs wrapped in crescent rolls with little mustard eyes. Adorable and delicious). I made a veggie platter with dip, baby carrots, celery and cauliflower. I made the cauliflower look like a brain though, which was cool. I got a full head, and cut out a middle section to put the dip bowl in. I was going to use food coloring to make it look even creepier, but I just didn’t have the time. I put random Halloween candy all over the table for people to pick at. I also made “Emergency Rations” signs for the food table. Because you don’t do half ass a zombie party. For drinks I got a few 2 liters, some cold cider, and some mulled hot cider, as well as punch that I made. I was nervous to try a new punch recipe, but it was so popular that I ran out. It also was a dark red which was awesome for a blood look. The recipe is 1 can of frozen lemonade, 2 cans of water, 1 packet of cherry Kool-Aid (I used black cherry cause it was what I had at home), 1/2 cup of sugar, 3/4 of a 2-liter of ginger ale, and a lot of ice. It was delicious. Overall, I spent about $50 at the grocery store. I did have some stuff on hand, but not a lot. You really just have to decide what you NEED and what you think would just be cool. Plus, I always recruit my friends to help.

5. DECORATIONS. This was hands down my favorite part. Working at Party City, I get A LOT of ideas. So I go all out. My family has a lot of their homemade decorations from when my siblings and I were kids, plus just things my parents have collected over the past 34 years together (Happy early Anniversary, by the way!). And as a Halloween enthusiast, I have a ton of stuff myself as well. What I did with our tradition Halloween stuff, is just made it crooked and falling down so it looked abandoned. I put dead flowers in a vase like no one has been here for a while. I even made sure no one raked my front yard (zombies don’t rake!). I found some old boards and boarded up our windows (with packing tape… My mom would’ve actually killed me if I used nails). I put white sheets over my couch and chairs, even a few of them had blood splatters and handprints on them. My boyfriend and I took pieces of plastic wrap, put red paint on it all creepy like and hung it on our windows. I got a bunch of fifty cent candles at the thrift store, and tried to make it look like our power was out. It got really hot once everyone was here and we were all moving, but the idea was pretty sweet. I blew up balloons way in advance so they looked all old and partially deflated. I have an old cosmetology school mannequin head, so I put creepy face paint on it and fake blood and stuck that in the cooler to startle a few people. I used old mason jars and put old nasty stuff in them to look like spoiled food and specimens. I used stuff like ripped up paper towels, food coloring, old leaves and chocolate sauce. I set up a strobe light to flash really slow, just to make it look like flickering lights and just to add to the creepy Halloween-y feel. I put black garbage bags on windows to make them look broken. I used an Expo marker to draw cracks on the bathroom mirror. I hung a beware sign on my mailbox, and put a lantern on our front walk as a beacon. We put those obnoxious to clean spiderwebs on everything, and even brought in a pile of dead leaves from the front. I even hung a dirty, fake bloodified baby doll on the front door. That was creepy AF. I also busted my balls to find a fake blood recipe that didn’t stain walls. My house is very lived in. And my mom accepts that parties cause a bit of a mess. But she was very worried that I would smear fake blood on our white walls and cupboards, and it wouldn’t come off. I mean, it would be a good conversation starter at Thanksgiving… Anyways, I looked everyone online for something, but everything had food coloring and I wasn’t about to risk it. I ended up coming up with my own recipe, which worked super well. I tested a spot on the inside of a cupboard a few days before the party, just to be sure, and it actually cleaned the cupboard. Like, cleaner than before there was fake blood. So that works. My recipe is dish soap (I used blue to had a little depth to the red), corn syrup, washable red poster paint, and sugar free chocolate syrup. I don’t have measurements, I just kind of messed with it until it looked like blood. It was super fun to dip my hands in it and just stumble around. I did buy a few decorations, but you really don’t have to. Just make the place look abandoned and creepy and that’s all you need.

6. COSTUME. The final touch to the perfect zombie party. I did give my guests the option of coming in a traditional Halloween costume, but you don’t have to leave that open. I mean really, a zombie party could happen any time of the year, not just Halloween. The best thing about a zombie theme is though, you can be literally ANY kind of zombie you want. You can take any normal costume, throw on some make up and fake blood and you’re good to go. Instead of just being lame old jean wearing ripped hoodie zombie, my boyfriend and I went as 80s rockstar zombies. My friend went as a zombie flapper. It’s kinda fun just to get dead. I mixed some chocolate syrup, red food coloring and corn syrup to make fake blood for my face. I did a blood splatter manicure (red nail polish and a straw. A bit messy but awesome results). I ripped my tights and messed my hair up. It was SO much fun to get ready. Even though I still have some spirit gum in my arm hair as I’m typing this…

So this is my guide book (guide blog?) to my zombie party. I found a lot online, I made a bunch of stuff up, I twisted a few things to fit the theme, but there weren’t any blogs or sites with just how to do it, one go. I was all over the internet and it was a pain. So hopefully this blog helps you. This party was one of the best I’ve had, and I got a TON of compliments on how well put together it was. Hopefully I gave you a few ideas, and I hope if you have a zombie party you have as much fun as I did!

Lots of love,

Fiona

PS. If you guys like this, I have SO MANY party planning tips and ideas and themes for you. Let me know what theme you’re thinking about and I’ll either throw my own or write a few ideas for you!
PPS. Here are a few of my favorite pictures from last night!

 

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^ My boyfriend and I in our 80s rockstar zombie get up!

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^ My friend Jess as a zombie flapper!

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^ My older sister, younger brother (he went as Tommy Pickles) and I!

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^ Our buddy Aaron bobbing for apples!

289 Reasons I Love You More Than Air.

  1. I love your amazingly sexy body. Hair and all.
  2. I love the fact that you always have room for the candy I eat, even when you’re more of a salty foods kinda person.
  3. I love the fact that you always have room for more food, period.
  4. I love when you’re brutally honest with me to the point that it catches me off guard. You don’t want to do something, you tell me.
  5. I love the way you wrestle with me. You’re not afraid to hurt me, and I’m not some fragile little girl to you.
  6. I love how you get grumpy with me when I accidentally tickle you.
  7. I love when you say exactly what I was thinking, even when it was completely random and out of the blue. Like after the first time we went to a casino, and we both wanted to go back, yet you said exactly what I was thinking without me having to say a word.
  8. I love being in public and sharing looks about the weirdos we see.
  9. I love when you go shopping with me and you don’t mind.
  10. I love how hardworking you are.
  11. I love the way you sometimes forget English.
  12. I love how you tease me for being a cat lady.
  13. I love the way you let me into your life, completely.
  14. I love the way you let me into your life without knowing how I would react.
  15. I love when we hug, you’re tall enough for my head to fit perfectly under your chin, right on your chest. And when I’m wearing heels, we barely know how to fit together.
  16. I love when I’m cold at night you don’t get mad for waking you half up to cuddle.
  17. I love when you tease me about hogging the bed, instead of getting (really) mad.
  18. I love that we won a fish, and immediately agreed on the name Whitey. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is.
  19. I love giraffe fights.
  20. I love the silver in your beard.
  21. I love how stubborn you are. Even when it makes me so angry, you wouldn’t be you without it.
  22. I love when you wait for me to fall asleep to leave.
  23. I love that you accept that I always run late.
  24. I love the way you get really into certain things. Computers or music or projects… the passion you show sometimes is absolutely breathtaking.
  25. I love the way we met.
  26. I love the fact that we can call each other weirdos and we don’t take it personally.
  27. I love the way you touch my face and play with my hair when I have a headache or had a bad day.
  28. I love planning to have 21 kids… 21 divided by 7 is 3 so…
  29. I love all of our weird inside jokes that no one else will ever understand.
  30. I love you put up with me calling you old. (You’re not actually old.)
  31. I love that I’ve told you secrets that I’ve never told anyone, and you probably judged me. But you loved me more for it.
  32. I love our list of places.
  33. I love falling asleep while you drive.
  34. I love that you teach me things, and for the first time in my life, I’m not too proud or stubborn or pissed off to deny that.
  35. I love that I took your FaceTime virginity.
  36. I love that you buy dinner.
  37. I love our 2 hour, leaning on a car, don’t want to say goodnight, make out sessions when we first got together.
  38. I love that you like me in glasses.
  39. I love that you get along with my family… almost better than I do sometimes.
  40. I love you for being the strongest person I know, whether you agree or not.
  41. I love that you accept my addiction to shoes, and only tease me about it every now and then.
  42. I love the way we disagree about your clothing size.
  43. I love when I get to keep you young by doing silly stuff. Like the zoo and pop concerts.
  44. I love the fact that you’ve taken more pictures with me than anyone.
  45. And the fact that I had to trick you into a lot of those pictures.
  46. I love how fucking handsome you are.
  47. I love the way you dance.
  48. I love how you do things for me I know you don’t want to do. Like watching chick flicks or listening to Ke$ha in the car.
  49. I love when you show me pictures of you when you were younger. Especially embarrassing ones. I won’t say anything about your headgear though.
  50. I love when you make my mom laugh.
  51. I love that you think I’m pretty. All the time.
  52. I love when you don’t get mad when I oversleep or refuse to move in the morning.
  53. I love when you dance in your car, and your entire body moves and you hit the steering wheel.
  54. I love that you aren’t grossed out when I fall asleep and drool on your chest.
  55. I love when you get giggly and tell me you love me in that adorable voice you use.
  56. I love how you kick ass at Monopoly. (See, I can admit it!)
  57. I love that you like hearing the songs I write, even if they suck and aren’t done.
  58. I love that you come to all my shows that you can. You’re pretty much my ultimate groupie. Also, my only groupie. Unless my mom counts.
  59. I love the fact that now I’m thinking about all the things I love about you and I can’t type fast enough to get everything out. This list might never end.
  60. I love knowing that you’ll always protect me.
  61. I love that you involve me in the stuff you like. Even if it’s going to new concerts, or listening to computer talk that I really don’t understand.
  62. I love that you have a past that makes me love you more.
  63. I love the way you think it’s funny to kiss me after you eat M&Ms.
  64. I love when you only judge me a little bit when I say something stupid.
  65. I love that you’re an incredible inspiration.
  66. I love your OCD.
  67. I love your ability to make me so angry and make me laugh at the same time.
  68. I love the way you have the weirdest catch phrases in the world… “It’s a baby!”
  69. I love sharing YouTube videos and laughing together.
  70. I love when you bought nice hand soap for your bathroom when I started coming over a lot.
  71. I love wearing your cat shirt to bed.
  72. I love how you’re really competitive… until you lose. Then you’re uninterested.
  73. And even if you do lose, or you do make a mistake, you admit it.
  74. I love that the first time we really hung out was for the Star Trek premier. Not ashamed.
  75. I love that sometimes, you don’t understand what I mean in the cutest ways. Like when I said I was going to cut the sleeves off a denim jacket, and you thought I meant short sleeved t-shirt length instead of as a vest.
  76. I love how you eat ice cream almost every night.
  77. I love that it’s not weird when I name our future children.
  78. I love when you laugh at your own lame jokes.
  79. I love when you also laugh at weird abbreviations and nicknames for things. Like BB’s and saying “swelc-y” instead of welcome.
  80. I love when I ask you what I should wear you actually get a little annoyed because I’m such a girl about it. Well, you’re such a boy.
  81. I love that I get to push you out of your comfort zone. Like buying a patterned belt and different shoes.
  82. I love you because we can finish each other’s sentences. And because sometimes we try to finish each other’s sentences and we’re completely wrong. And because sometimes we don’t even need to start sentences to know what the other is thinking.
  83. I love watching you when you’re working, and you don’t even realize how amazing you are.
  84. I love the way we can cuddle in almost any position and it’s not weird.
  85. I love being the big spoon and sticking my face between your shoulder blades.
  86. I love the way you smell.
  87. I love that when I was little, I dreamed of some prince charming sweeping me off my feet, and even my dream man wasn’t as awesome as you.
  88. I love your weird laughs.
  89. I love the way you are completely unique and you’re not afraid to let me see that.
  90. I love when you encourage my quirky little habits, like drawing random pictures and writing you notes like I’m in 7th grade.
  91. I love that you love my best friend, her fiancee, and their baby like your own.
  92. I love when you throw me around.
  93. I love your voice on the phone.
  94. I love the way your mouth tastes.
  95. I love the way your beard feels.
  96. I love when you kiss me in some weird way that no human should ever kiss in.
  97. I love when I have a bad dream you’ll hold me tighter.
  98. I love how you’re so fucking smart.
  99. I love how no matter how long we’re together, you still give me butterflies.
  100. I love that you’re my inspiration for love songs.
  101. I love that you’ll hold my hand and kiss me in public.
  102. I love the way that even when it feels like it could be the end, we would never let it be.
  103. I love the way you say I don’t have to ask if you can get dinner tonight, because you know I’m 95% of the time broke.
  104. I love you for being so awkward it’s almost not awkward anymore.
  105. I love you for reading Harry Potter for me.
  106. I love you for knowing when I say “I don’t want to see any humans ever again” that I don’t mean you.
  107. I love you because you can tell in a single text if something is wrong.
  108. I love that we’re content to just chill and go to bed by 10.
  109. I love your eyes. Especially when you smile.
  110. I love your smile.
  111. I love knowing that if I died tomorrow, I found my soulmate before I did.
  112. I love being able to surprise you in stupid little ways.
  113. I love that you are my last thought before I go to bed, and my first thought in the morning.
  114. I love that since we got close, I don’t remember a single dream where my love interest wasn’t you.
  115. I love giving you full body scratches.
  116. I love the way there are nights I go to bed knowing that my life is better than any chick flick.
  117. I love watching movies together than one of us hasn’t seen, and watching the other’s reaction.
  118. I love watching scary movies with you and knowing you’ll laugh when I jump.
  119. I love the way you know how to handle me perfectly. Angry, sad, quiet, anything.
  120. I love when you try to sexy text me.
  121. I love your tattoo.
  122. I love your weirdly hairy arms.
  123. I love that ridiculous voice you get when you’re singing a song that’s too high for you.
  124. I love you for dealing with the random shit I say, especially when I’m half asleep and it makes no sense.
  125. I love that you showed me what true love was.
  126. I love debating with you. Even when it ends with me getting legitimately mad at you.
  127. I love your lame puns and corny jokes. That are really only funny because of how hard you laugh at them.
  128. I love that you never call me annoying even though I know I am.
  129. I love when you call me baby or babes or Fi or anything.
  130. I love that we are living proof that opposites attract.
  131. I love that you’re my best friend AND my love.
  132. I love how mature you can be, and how completely immature you can be other times.
  133. I love how I can tell you’ll be the best father to our kids.
  134. I love when you show me all the little projects you’re working on.
  135. I love the way you can get me excited. About anything.
  136. I love that you have the balls to tell me when I’m being an idiot.
  137. I love how absolutely amazing you are.
  138. I love not being able to imagine a life without you..
  139. I love being able to tell you anything and everything.
  140. I love that you’re never boring.
  141. I love that you have your priorities straight.
  142. I love that look you get when you didn’t get enough sleep and you want to take a nap but you don’t want to fall asleep on me when we’re hanging out.
  143. I love when you remember my favorite candy.
  144. I love that we always share a Nerd’s Rope when one of us has one.
  145. I love when we laugh at racism.
  146. I love that you could be with so many people who are better than I am, but you chose me.
  147. I love your mohawk.
  148. I love messing up your mohawk.
  149. I love your unusual collection of glasses.
  150. I love the stupid faces I catch you making.
  151. I love making plans with you. Even if you can’t stand it.
  152. I love that you respect your parents.
  153. I love calling you a hipster.
  154. I love that your dream pet is a miniature giraffe. Because they’re real.
  155. I love how you’re always the first person done at dinner.
  156. I love being able to wrap my arms around your waist.
  157. I love how you use “I want to lick you like a salt lick” as a pickup line.
  158. I love you for the way you get when you listen to Phish.
  159. And the Disco Biscuits.
  160. And Grateful Dead.
  161. I love looking at baby animals and then looking at you, just for you to say “No, we can’t get one.”
  162. I love that our relationship started in the hands down most awkward way it could. Really, Foursquare?
  163. I love calling you a hippie.
  164. I love that my friends love you.
  165. I love that our babies are pretty much gonna be the hottest things in the world.
  166. I love that you have the sexiest sleepy voice ever.
  167. I love you because you don’t get mad at me for calling you repeatedly in the middle of the night because I had a bad dream.
  168. I love when you wake me up in the middle of night talking back to me when I talk in my sleep.
  169. I love that I can tell awful jokes and you still laugh. Or just look at me like, really?
  170. I love the way you grab me like you’re desperate not to let go.
  171. I love distracting you when you’re working on homework.
  172. I love constantly reminding you about silly little things, like a random conversation we had that made me smile, or a dumb picture we took.
  173. I love that you know exactly what makes me happy and when I need it most.
  174. I love your man hands.
  175. I love the way your hands get dirty and cut up when you work on cars.
  176. I love the way you argue when I say bad things about myself.
  177. I love how rough you can be yet how gentle you can be at other times.
  178. I love playing partnered games with you and making us lose because I pretty much suck at all games.
  179. I love that you are the first person to make me think I don’t want to die young.
  180. I love that you’re my reason to constantly check my phone.
  181. I love when you roll your eyes and sigh at me.
  182. I love taking your hoodies even when you warn me that I’m going to be cold.
  183. I love making you watch Disney movies and dumb comedies that no one else cares about.
  184. I love you even when your mohawk is messed up and you just woke up, because you’re the most beautiful thing in the world. Even at 8am.
  185. I love that you support my decisions. Even weird or kinda dumb ones.
  186. I love your little boy butt. Sorry.
  187. I love that I get turned on by you, even when you’re not trying. At all. Like, the opposite of trying.
  188. I love planning a future with you.
  189. I love that we could look at engagement rings on Pinterest together like what, 3 weeks into our relationship? and you didn’t run screaming.
  190. I love that you’re the first person I can tolerate telling me the shit I need to change.
  191. I love that you’ve cried for me.
  192. I love how when I wake up at 4am, with my light still on, half a text typed out on my phone, no matter how completely out of it I am, I think of you.
  193. I love the 9 years that don’t matter at all to us.
  194. I love talking to you on Facebook chat and texting at the same time.
  195. I love that I finally found someone mutually weird.
  196. I love it when I catch myself out with my friends and all I can talk about is you.
  197. I love showing you off.
  198. I love that you calm me down when I’m having a panic attack.
  199. I love your strange obsession with VW.
  200. I love listening to rain and watching thunderstorms with you.
  201. I love making plans with you to do all the silly little things each season. Like drive ins and swimming in the summer, and apple picking and hayrides in the fall. You’re the first person those really count with.
  202. I love that you keep me standing.
  203. I love actually being able to tell you when something pisses me off, because I know even if we fight, we’ll get through it.
  204. I love that I found such a miracle.
  205. I love that I see only you in a crowded room.
  206. I love waking up early to text you good luck or good morning, and you telling me to go back to sleep.
  207. I love reading our old conversations.
  208. I love seeing your contact in my notifications.
  209. I love when you yell at me for mumbling, when really you’re just going deaf.
  210. I love your smile being enough to get me through the day.
  211. I love when I haven’t seen you for a few days, I make an extra effort to do my make up and shave my legs and be pretty.
  212. I love when you sneeze and it turns into a weird tribal chant.
  213. I love laughing at texts from you then realizing I’m sitting by myself in a quiet room with a bunch of strangers who think I’m crazy.
  214. I love missing you the minute you leave, even when you’re still in my driveway.
  215. I love you bitching about my tiny bed.
  216. I’d still love you if you gained 200 pounds. I’d worry about you, but I would still love you.
  217. I love that it’s okay to talk about mostly gross stuff with you, even at dinner. I know you’re not about to lose your appetite.
  218. I love when something you eat is too hot and you yell about it. In restaurants.
  219. I love that you don’t even have to be anywhere near me to turn me on. Just the thought of you.
  220. I love seeing kids and staring at you with crazy eyes.
  221. I love that you’ve changed me in all the right ways.
  222. I love that you accept my constantly messy room.
  223. I love losing to you at air hockey.
  224. I love asking your permission to do things, and you acting like it’s the weirdest thing and that I never have to ask you.
  225. I love that you don’t get mad when my phone dies, even though I could’ve probably charged it before I left my house.
  226. I love that I don’t have to apologize for my dog jumping on you anymore.
  227. I love that, when I think about doing something (even little things, like grabbing Taco Bell for dinner), I know that it would be better with you there.
  228. I love finally understanding what Rascal Flatts really meant in that Broken Road song… All of my mistakes and hard times couldn’t have brought me to a better place. With you.
  229. I love knowing that you’ll always finish my food when I can’t.
  230. And knowing that you won’t get mad if I steal bites of whatever you have.
  231. I love that you chose me, even though you could easily do better.
  232. I love the way you mean it when you compliment me.
  233. I love you because you make everything in my life the very best it could be.
  234. I love that I would give you my life, if all you did is ask.
  235. And I love that you would never ask.
  236. I love you because you don’t say sorry unless you mean it.
  237. According to Greek mythology, humans were originally created with 4 arms, 4 legs and a head with two faces. Fearing their power, Zeus split them into two separate parts, condemning them to spend their lives in search of their other halves. I love you because you’re my other half.
  238. I love you because if all I had was you, and only you… I’d have more than enough.
  239. I love you because you don’t even realize how much you mean to me. Everything.
  240. I love your hatred for ham.
  241. I love you because if I couldn’t sing or write or play piano and I was totally tone deaf, you’d still listen to me try to sing.
  242. I love you for making me realize why people do crazy things for love, like jumping off a boat or throwing expensive jewelry into the ocean.
  243. I love knowing that no one will ever love you as fiercely as I do.
  244. I love listening to the radio and thinking, “He’d like this song. He’d hate this song. He probably doesn’t even know this song.”
  245. I love you for dealing with me when I get hormonal and my emotions are all over the place.
  246. I love you because the chances of us being together are so small and random and weird, that it MUST mean that we’re meant to be.
  247. I love the way you hold my hand in the car. Until you need to shift.
  248. I love falling asleep in the weirdest sleeping positions and it being totally okay.
  249. I love you because even when you have to wake up in the morning, if I need you or we get in a fight, you’ll stay up late to make sure it’s okay.
  250. I love the way you’re positively one of a kind.
  251. I love you because I didn’t realize how much of life I was missing until I met you.
  252. I love that all of your imperfections make you perfect.
  253. Also, that you’re just plain perfect.
  254. I love that you show me when you mean stuff, it’s not just words.
  255. I will still love if (when) you lose your hair.
  256. I love when you get really into a snack in the car or watching a movie and you get crumbs everywhere.
  257. I love that you always find time to text me, even when you have super crazy days.
  258. I love you for saving me from spiders. And sometimes fuzzies that look like spiders.
  259. I love when you laugh hard enough that you kind of lose control of your tongue.
  260. I love that wherever you are, is my home.
  261. I love that you don’t hold a grudge when I do silly and kind of mean things to you. Like mushing food on your face.
  262. I love that you really, genuinely listen to me.
  263. And when you don’t, I love when you say, “Sorry, but I really wasn’t listening to you at all.”
  264. I love that even past our “honeymoon phase”, when we fight and don’t want to make out all the time, you still make my heart skip a beat.
  265. And I love knowing that that whole, heart skipping a beat thing will never go away.
  266. I love you for the face you make when I warm up my hands under your shirt.
  267. I love you for asking me how things are on a scale from one to something that is not a number and in no way comparable to one.
  268. I love you for being a grump when I want to play in the rain and you don’t want to get your shoes wet.
  269. I love when holding hands turn into thumb wrestling matches. That I will always win.
  270. I love how you change socks before a concert.
  271. I love that you always offer to help, even if there’s nothing you can do.
  272. I love that when I ask what happened, you humor me with an explanation, even if it’s just you’re frustrated with math homework.
  273. I love you in buttons.
  274. I love you because you were there when everything was going accordingly to plan, and you were there when everything was completely falling apart.
  275. I love that I don’t have to be perfect to be perfect for you.
  276. I love sharing new music with you.
  277. I love you because sometimes I know I’m seeing a side of you that no one else deserves.
  278. And I love how special that makes me feel.
  279. I love that you’re okay with a simple date, or going all out. We have fun together no matter what.
  280. I love that even in light of my crappy past, you never made me feel bad about who I am. You were just there for me.
  281. I love that you are the first person to ever get me flowers with me having to drop a million hints. You just do it.
  282. I love hearing a love song and thinking, “He’d hate this music, but the words…”
  283. I love the way you secretly like things that you pretend to hate. Like taking pictures and tickle fights and the way I can’t stop telling you how handsome you are.
  284. I love that I KNOW you’re reading all of these. And probably getting pretend grumpy about me bringing some stuff up. Like your headgear and the way you make a mess when you eat sometimes.
  285. I love calling you grumpy. When you actually are, and when you’re not.
  286. I love doing weird dances and you not judging me. Because you do them too.
  287. I love your thighs.
  288. I love that you are literally the only person in the entire world that I would ever imagine giving them a full body scratch and actually scratching their butt.
  289. I love you for you.

There’s more to this list. There’s always going to be more that I can add. I probably could’ve kept going forever, but honestly, I’m kinda sleepy. Every single day is a reason to love you even more. Every day our love grows, and it makes me feel giddy and excited for our future. For the rest of our lives together. I know there have been times that I was so angry or frustrated with you that I didn’t think of any of these reasons to love you. There have been times where I just don’t think, period. There are a lot of times that I’ve made mistakes. Small ones and big ones. Really big ones. There have been times where I lost sight of some of these reasons. But I hope you know that I love you more than anything, even when I fuck up. Especially when I fuck up. This list is endless, and it will continue to grow as long as you’re willing to have me. You are my heart and soul, my world, my dreams, my absolute everything. And I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me for when I lose sight of the incredible thing we have. I never mean to hurt you, even though I have. Please believe me though, when I say that I love you Ryan. More than air. ❤

Dear September,

Holy shit time flies. I suck at blogging. I haven’t even been posting music! I am stupid busy lately, but that is no excuse. If I find time to play Pet Rescue Saga, I could be writing a blog. I’ll do a quick recap on what’s been happening with me, then I’ll try reeaally hard to keep posting more regularly. So lets see. In the past month… I’m still dating Ryan, and I love him more than ever (this weekend is his 30th birthday and we’re going up to Niagara Falls and I can’t wait). I’m not back in school (stupid community college denied me financial aid, so fuck that). I am taking a few free online courses though, just because I need something to work on. Thankfully all of my out of town friends are back at school so I don’t sit at home and creep their Facebook pictures. Hmm what else… I rear ended someone like an idiot, went carless for a few weeks, but now! My grandma officially signed her car over to us so I have my own car! Eeee! This means no more worrying about grandma’s insurance AND I can finally put some bumper stickers on that mofo. I am quite proud of my 98 Chevy Lumina… It’s a pimp car. Pretty much nothing else is going on. My cousin got married, that was fun. My little brother is almost 18 and that’s weird. Love him to death but I never want him to legally be able to watch porn. Gross. I’m still writing when I get time, and I plan on auditioning for Peter Pan in a few weeks. I also have a show at the Bug Jar on the 19th. I will be shamelessly advertising that soon enough, so pretty much everyone in a 3 state radius should come… So music is going well. Okay. It’s almost noon and I’m still in bed and I’m hungry and have to pee soooo I’m going to bring this to an end. I promise to write more! Hell, even comment or message me suggestions for what you’d like to hear me ramble about. I’ll try my hardest to bring it up and it’ll be good motivation for me to get back on this wagon. I miss you!
Lots of love,
Fiona
PS, Miley Cyrus. Wtf? If anyone ever says she is my celebrity look alike again, I will kill them.

Dear Ryan,

I woke up in your bed with you wearing one of your tshirts and you were too warm and you smelled like sleep and morning and bed and my arm was asleep under me and I didn’t have a pillow anymore but you were asleep and I didn’t want to move so I just kept quiet and thought about the way your beard tickles my shoulders and the way there’s no space between your chest and me and how our hands always find each other even when we’re sleeping and I looked at your hand on mine with the chipped pink nail polish and felt you almost snoring in my ear and thought, “This is it.”

I love you, Ryan.

PS. Never take anything for granted. That one perfect moment makes life beautiful. I’m lucky enough to have a man in my life that fills every day with moments like this.

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Need Me Too

It’s like a closed door I can see through.
It’s a chance we need to take, but you don’t want to.
It’s running out of time, and I’m running out of faith in you.

Who are you gonna turn to once you’ve pushed me away?
Whose shoulder will you cry on when it’s a day too late?
Who will hold your hand because I can’t stay?
I need you, and you need me too.

Everyday’s a struggle and I want to be there,
But if every time is my fault, that’s not fair.
I try to hold myself together, but I’m going under.

Who are you gonna turn to once you’ve pushed me away?
Whose shoulder will you cry on when it’s a day too late?
Who will hold your hand because I can’t stay?
I need you, and you need me too.

You promised me we’d work this out,
But a year later and you’re going nowhere.
You promised me through all my doubt,
But a promise means nothing if you don’t mean it.
I need you to mean it.
I need you to need it, like I need you.

Who are you gonna turn to once you’ve pushed me away?
Whose shoulder will you cry on when it’s a day too late?
Who will hold your hand because I can’t stay?
I need you, and you need me too.

Who are you gonna turn to once you’ve pushed me away?
Whose shoulder will you cry on when it’s a day too late?
Who will hold your hand because I can’t stay?
I need you, and you need me too.
I need you, but you need me too.

Dear summer,

Hey! So I haven’t been posting at all lately, and I don’t even have time to write a good blog right now, but I wanted to let you know that I haven’t forgotten about you. I fully blame this on how busy my summer has been. Good, but busy! If I have any downtime between work and whatnot in the next few days, I will write something real for you all to read. Almost nothing has changed in my life though, so you haven’t missed much. Still working at Party City and with Nik, still living at home, still obsessed with my cat… I have an amazing boyfriend, we’ve been together for about a month now, and I couldn’t ask for anything more. He’s the best. So that’s pretty much what’s going on in my life. This is me procrastinating getting ready for a show, so I really have to go. I promise we’ll talk again soon!
So much love,
Fiona
Ps. Obsessed with this song. Sorry for the mobile link, I’m on my phone. SO GOOD. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qwp3nitXNFU