Wednesday, December 28, 2016

10 Things You Should Register For

We are two months into our marriage and two months into using all of the things we received as wedding gifts and as I was using my Magic Bullet today I thought, "Man, this is great - everyone should register for one of these." So I thought I'd give a list of ten items that we actually use and love on a regular basis that I'd recommend people register for. Here goes nothing...

1. Magic Bullet. Smoothies, milkshakes, I'm sure there are more things it makes... The Magic Bullet is super quick and easy and can be thrown in the dishwasher which is awesome. We've been loving the smoothies we've been making for a quick and healthy breakfast.

2. Dutch oven. It's been my life long dream to own a Le Creuset dutch oven. Ok, maybe not life long... but I couldn't bring myself to register for a $200+ pot (essentially) so instead we registered for the $50 dutch oven at Target. I use this thing all. the. time.

3. Fancy trash can. I'm not sure why we love this little guy so much - but we love our Simple Human trash can. Trash cans are expensive anyway - so it's kind of one of those "go big or go home" kind of things.

4. Pyrex set. Josh is anti-microwaving plastic so he wanted glass tupperware. These are used just about every day in our home and apparently we are avoiding cancer with the glass!

5. Step ladder. This may seem like a silly item - but we've busted this guy out more often than I would have thought. Christmas decorating... Smoke detector battery changing... It comes in handy.

6. A nice knife set. Someone told us, "Don't register for a knife set that is less than $200." Felt a little pricey for me but I'm glad we didn't settle for a cheaper one. These knives have been great. (Fun fact that I just realized as I was searching this - these were $200 at Bed, Bath, and Beyond but $118 on Amazon... Sounds like if you need some knives, you should go for it on Amazon.)

7. Coffee grinder. We got quite a few coffee gadgets for the wedding but I've got to say that this burr mill wins the prize. If you are into freshly ground beans - this is the thing for you. (Another fun fact - this one is cheaper on Amazon, too. Note to self (or you - because I don't plan on getting married and registering again) - register at Amazon, not Bed, Bath, and Beyond.)

8. Pineapple slicer. From talking to others, there are good pineapple slicers and bad pineapple slicers. We believe we've found a good one because we love ours. If you like pineapple - this is worth the $20.

9. Milk frother. This is a luxury item and probably will lose its cool factor in the next few months and we'll find it in the back of our cabinet in 10 years and be like, "Remember when we used to use this all the time? I wonder if it still works..." But for now... For now, we really are enjoying frothed milk with our coffee.

10. Kitchenaid mixer. This is another one of those things that I thought was too expensive to put on our registry even though I really wanted a new one. We have some good friends that asked Josh, "What does Abby really want?" and Josh told them a new Kitchenaid mixer. So that's what I got! They even let me pick out the color. If you know me, you aren't surprised that I chose yellow...

Alright, that's all I've got. Have I mentioned that I love making lists? This list making may have just made my day... What else can I make a list for?

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Loving Lately.

(Draft of a Christmas present I made for Josh)

If you would have asked the Abby from three months ago if she’d be reading blogs and making grocery lists all work-day long… she would have laughed in your face then probably started crying because she was so stressed. Yet, here I am… I really don’t have much profound to say (today… or ever…) But I decided I’d give a “Currently” post a try... of things I’m loving lately. Maybe we’ll call it Loving Lately… Here it is.

This hummus recipe. One of Josh and I’s favorite restaurants here in KC is Longboards – and they have the best hummus around. We started searching for a recipe that would give it a run for its money. This one isn’t QUITE Longboards-worthy… but it comes close. The best part? Josh enjoys making it and it’s always fun to see him in the kitchen.

 The idea of being a person with lots of plants in their house. I have no green thumb… whatsoever… But with Josh and I’s powers combined I’m hoping we can keep some plants alive. I got this pot for my birthday that I’m still waiting to plant something in. I also like the idea of some hanging plants inside? We’ll see how this goes… (or if it even gets off the ground.)

Yes, I realize that most of you may be over Christmas music. But this Christmas album just came to my attention today and it’s pretty awesome… Leslie Odom, Jr. He’s the guy that sings the pretty Nationwide commercial. It’s worth a listen if you can handle just a little bit more Christmas music. Simply beautiful. I especially like his rendition of The First Noel. 

This shirt. We went to be with Josh’s parents in Republic, MO for Christmas this year. Josh and I stopped in this store called Five Pound Apparel in downtown Springfield and it was pretty great. I bought this t-shirt. I like it because it’s got Kansas and Missouri sitting on the couch together… It just makes me happy - call me weird.

Passengers. Sometimes movie critics bother me. They give the movies that are super dark and depressing the good ratings – but the movies that are just enjoyable to watch get the poor ratings. We saw the movie Passengers on Christmas Day and even though the ratings aren’t super favorable - Josh, both his parents, and myself all enjoyed it. And Chris Pratt is pretty great.

My new Patagonia coat that I got for Christmas. The gift side of Christmas wasn’t super exciting for the Agees this year. I picked out this coat for myself because I saw it on sale on Cyber Monday. Josh picked out his own watch. So there were no surprises for either of us but we are both still really excited for our gifts. I put this coat on last night and Josh said, “That coat couldn’t be much more you.” I’ll take that as a compliment. Now if it would just get cold enough for me to wear it! (Today’s high is in the 50s…)

That's enough for now! Have a great day!

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Try-It Tuesday Catch Up

Try-It Tuesday… Remember when I used to do that? Try new recipes then write about it? Those were the days… I’ve tried quite a few over the last year. Here are some highlights… I’ll give you some “bests” in categories to keep it concise. (Now these are just “bests” of late – not all time bests… Just feel like I need to clarify.)

Best Bar
-Texas Sheet Cake Brownies - Josh had the brilliant idea of microwaving these for “13 seconds” and it turned them into something good to something AMAZING.

Best Slow Cooker Recipe
-Slow Cooker Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Taquitos - I feel like this is kind of misleading because not all of this was in the crock pot – just the chicken – then you take the chicken to make it into a taquito. But it was still delicious!

Best Healthy Recipe
-Quinoa Bowls with Roasted Vegetables and Chicken - I have learned that I do NOT like cutting butternut squash… but I LOVE eating butternut squash. (Yes, this has butternut squash in it... and it's worth it!) This has a dressing you can make on the side – but in my opinion, it’s not needed. The veggies and chicken have enough flavor that there’s not need to add the extra calories.

Best Cake
-Better Than Sex Pumpkin Cake - Don’t judge – this is the title given to it by the blogger, not me… And while it may not be true, it’s still dang good.

Best Pie
-Easy Brownie Pie - I’m not always a huge fan of fruit pies – so this was a good alternative to that!

Best Chicken Recipe
-Chicken Massaman Curry - We are big fans of Thai food – and massaman curry is one of my favorites. This is a great recipe to make it at home. Massaman curry can be difficult to find so I’d recommend planning ahead and ordering it on Amazon. Don’t you just love Amazon Prime?

Best Cookie Recipe
-Soft and Chewy Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies - It’s tradition for me to make white chocolate cranberry cookies for Thanksgiving… This year I tried a different recipe than normal and it was GOOD.

More recipes to come, I'm sure!

Friday, December 9, 2016


I will admit that I have a hard time spending consistent time with the Lord. One thing that I have found that helps is putting myself on some kind of plan or devotional to point me in a direction of study and get me in different sections of the Bible than I would gravitate to on my own. Right before Thanksgiving I started reading a study from She Reads Truth called “Psalms of Gratitude.” As I mentioned – I struggle with consistency so I didn’t quite finish before Thanksgiving but I’m still plugging through. (I also am reading their Advent study which is really good!)

Anyway, one day they had us read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” They said, “Gratitude is not just an emotion. Rejoicing is not a passive pursuit. The Bible instructs us to declare God’s goodness in every circumstance! We are to pray, seek, and give thanks with an expectant, joyful heart. This is God’s will for us.” Then they gave a list of things to reflect on and be actively thankful. I thought the list was super helpful and good to think on so I thought I’d share it with you. So here it is!

I will give thanks in…

1.       This joyful thing:
2.       This suffering:
3.       This certainty:
4.       This stress:
5.       This injustice:
6.       This sorrow:
7.       This plenty:
8.       This want:
9.       This wandering:
10.   This waiting:

Hope this list is a beneficial for you as it was for me. God is good and he deserves our active thanks!

Thursday, December 8, 2016

I'm back!

(The Agees)

Welp, it's been a while, huh? Quite a bit has happened since May... Let me catch you up!

Olympic year – this doesn’t impact most people – but in the Agee household… it’s significant. In June I got to go with some friends to watch the men’s gymnastics Olympic trials in St. Louis. Let’s be honest… I just went to watch the athletic trainer, my husband, who was working it. But we had a great weekend and enjoyed every bit of it. Skip ahead a few months – of course we had a men’s gymnastics party when the actual Olympics were on. AND I got to go to the post-Olympic tour. All pretty awesome things if you’re a gymnastics kind of person – which I am slowly becoming…

Showers – we were blessed enough to have lots and lots of wedding showers thrown for us over the summer and fall. We’ve got some pretty awesome people in our lives…

New house – Josh and I bought a house of our very own and I moved in in August. We love the house… though it still feels like we’re getting settled in since Josh just moved in after the wedding. We may or may not have a room dedicated to empty cardboard boxes. Someday it’ll be a guestroom… someday.

Wedding – Josh and I got married on October 28th! Ultimately I think it was Christ-centered, joyful, beautiful, and family-and-friends-ful day– which is exactly what we wanted. It was pretty awesome...

Honeymoon – we went to Sonoma/Napa and San Francisco for our honeymoon. Turns out I really like traveling and doing life with this guy.

New job – I came back from the honeymoon to start a new job within my company. I am no longer managing a group of people and am now an “analyst” reporting to this high up guy and getting him reports and data on whatever he asks for. Not super exciting but it is way less stressful than my previous job and allows me the freedom to do more of what I feel called to do outside of work…

Which is why I’m back, after 6 months of nothing, and will hopefully be able to write more consistently again! Here goes nothing!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Scrambled eggs with a side of nostalgia.

I didn't really feel like cooking a meal tonight and I didn't feel like eating leftovers... Ever been there? Some people might have fancy back ups or convenient fill ins like frozen pizza or deli meat or something. Not me. Josh likes to make fun of me because when I go grocery shopping I get enough food to make one meal... so I don't have a lot of extra food hanging around. Yes, I realize it's inefficient and yes, I realize I'm going to have to get my act together when I'm cooking for a family. But for now... it works.

I always have eggs on hand. I'm a baker - there are some things you always have on hand... Butter, various sugars, flour, cake mixes, cupcake papers... and eggs. So I made scrambled eggs!

Scrambled eggs have a special place in my heart. They remind me of growing up and the nights that Dad was in charge of dinner. A lot of times we would have something on the grill... but if he was really winging it... scrambled eggs with a side of toast. So tonight as I was "slaving away" at the stove cooking scrambled eggs it made me smile thinking of my dad. I think I'm doing alright if I'm following in his footsteps... scrambled eggs and all. (Love you, De Da!)

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Perfection in a cookie.

Whoa... it's been a while! I promise my intent was not to get engaged and fall off the face of the earth... As you can imagine, things have been a bit busy. Good good stuff is happening though! (More to come on that at a later date.)

I don't have a lot to say this moment - but I did want to write to tell you about some of the best peanut butter cookies that I've ever made. I can't take credit. I strictly followed the directions laid out before me. But you should follow these directions and make some yourself because they are gooooood.

That's all. The world just needed to know - these cookies are amazing.

Soft and Chewy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Just engaged!

So… I got engaged last weekend! I’ve been meaning to take some time to write it down but as you can imagine, it’s been a bit of a crazy week. Here’s the story… in case you’re curious.

Josh and I have been talking, praying, waiting on the Lord, etc. for a while to figure out what God wants for our relationship. About a month or two ago (Valentine’s Day to be exact), we had a heart to heart and I basically said, “I want to wait for you to decide… but I can’t wait forever.” He put a tentative deadline on it and decided by the end of March, we needed to make a decision – we’re either in or we’re out.

A couple of weeks ago he started acting differently – something about him made me think that he’d made a decision to go for it which meant I started reading into everything he did. (#girlproblems) Even to the point where I actually had this hunch that Tuesday of last week (we were supposed to have dinner and watch Fixer Upper) I thought he was going to propose. I ended up having to work late that night and it didn’t work out to hang out, so... no proposal. (That wasn’t his plan anyway…) Other conversations with him, my mom, and others made me think that he was going to do it. Then on Friday night, we had dinner with my parents and something about their conversation made me think that I was wrong all along and had been reading into things that weren’t there.

So after dinner, we went back to my place and watched some Fixer Upper (that’s our new thing). He could tell I was down and asked how I was doing. I just laid it out there, “We said the end of March and it’s almost the end of March. We’re running out of time. Are you any closer to making a decision on our future?” He replied with a VERY convincing, “I don’t know, Abby…” “Well, if you don’t know now, you’re not going to know in a week, so we might as well just end it.” “Let’s just get through this weekend with your family and we’ll deal with it later.” I was SO discouraged.

The next day I texted my mom something like, “You could pray for me – I’m really in a funk. Had a hard talk with Josh last night and I don’t think he’s any closer to being ready. I am afraid I’m going to have to end it.” She responded with normal encouraging, godly mom-like things. I met them for lunch without Josh and was just sad… They were sympathetic but didn’t say much. Josh joined us later in the day to watch the Oklahoma and KU basketball games (RIP Jayhawks AND Sooners...) and in his words, “You were cooold.” We watched the games then headed home and confession – I cried the whole way home in anticipation of having to end this relationship.

Then Sunday came. We did church together and had plans to drive to Olathe to have an Easter lunch with my extended family. I was just trying to focus on Easter and what Jesus did on the cross because that’s bigger and better than any of my earthly woes. Josh told me that he had to be the closer after church so we had to wait til everyone cleared out and then turn off lights, lock up, etc. He asked me to help him turn off the lights so we walked in the sanctuary and I noticed that the light behind the stage was still on so I walked back there to turn it off. When I came back out to the stage…

He was on one knee with a ring in his hands! I’m not 100% sure what was said after that. I cried and definitely exclaimed some things like, “Oh my gosh! Are you serious? Oh my gosh! Are you sure?” and he didn’t say anything. Then me, in my typical direct fashion, said, “So… are you going to ask me?” He asked, “Will you marry me?” I said yes, we said I love you for the first time, and the rest is history! Then I looked around and our friend King was there taking pictures. We chatted a bit then headed to Olathe where we were greeted by my parents – who knew all along because Josh chatted with my dad the few weeks leading up to it – and the rest of my family who celebrated with us as we walked in the door.

There's a guitar in the way... but this is him proposing. (Unfortunate angle but you get the gist!)

I was pretty excited...

Awkward kissing picture... 

 Telling the story to my family... with a truck as our stage.

We’re engaged! Still can’t really believe it. Can’t believe that I went from thinking that I was sadly going to have to move on, to happily starting to plan the rest of my life with this guy!

Simply and perfectly beautiful. He couldn't have picked a better one for me.

(Now on to wedding planning. I’m going to apologize in advance – this blog may be a little wedding centric over the next 6 months. But let’s do this!)

Sunday, March 20, 2016


(Warning: super emo post.)

I've been struggling with insecurity lately. I know, we all struggle with insecurities... But lately it seems as though I've been letting it affect my life more than it has in the past.

I would say that if you would have asked me a few years ago, "What would have to happen to make you feel good about yourself?" I would have answered: 1. Lose weight. 2. Get a boyfriend. Well... about 2 years ago I started losing weight and dating someone. I felt good about myself... for a while. But the, "Wow! You look great!"s have stopped coming because my weight loss is old news. And as great as Josh is, his newness has also worn off and I've started putting this unfair weight on the things he does or doesn't say. Basically... I'm back at square one and I'm a mess.

I have started reading the book "So Long Insecurity" by Beth Moore. (If that doesn't sound like a self-help book... I don't know what does.) I read it a few years ago but I'm back for more... She wrote:

"We all have insecurities. They piggyback on the vulnerability inherent in our humanity. The question is whether or not our insecurities are substantial enough to hurt, limit, or even distract us from profound effectiveness or fulfillment of purpose. Are they cheating us of the powerful and abundant life Jesus flagrantly promised? Do they nip at our heels all the way from the driveway to the workplace? Scripture claims that believers in Christ are enormously gifted people. Are our insecurities snuffing the Spirit until our gifts, for all practical purposes, are largely unproductive or, at the very least, tentative?"

If I'm being honest... this is where I'm at. I'm disappointed that I let myself get here. I know better than to put my hope and worth in anything other than the Lord yet I do it time and time again. So I'm working on it... Side by side with Christ I'm digging into this. No resolution yet... I'm still a work in progress - and always will be. But I just thought I'd write to say insecurities suck - and if you struggle like I do - maybe it's time you start poking holes in yours because they could be preventing you from being and doing what God has called you and created you to be and do. Let's do this.

(You can't say I didn't warn you...)

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Almond Poppyseed Bread.

We had our monthly family birthday party today and because it was in the morning we opted for brunch food. I looove me some brunch. I signed up to bring a sweet bread or cinnamon rolls. I also looove me some cinnamon rolls but decided I didn't want to go through the hassle of letting the dough rise, rolling them out, baking them, frosting them, etc... So I went the easy route: sweet bread.

One of my favorite sweet bread recipes is one that I found a few years ago for Almond Poppyseed Bread (or at least that's what I call it). It's super easy and has always been a hit. The family loved it today as well and I had a couple of them ask for the recipe so I figured it'd share it with you all, just in case you're in the search of the perfect sweet bread. (Since I know... that's something all of you are in searching of, right? Nope? Just me?)

Anyway, here it is: Almond Poppyseed Bread. Get to it!

Friday, March 4, 2016


Last week I went to West Palm Beach with my Florida with my parents. It was a great trip - lots of relaxation, time on the beach, and spending time with two of my favorite people.

Of course the beach was beautiful as always... Here are some of my favorite shots from the week.