The Ashley Maria Blog
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Thursday, October 13, 2016

EasyPretzel Brownies

Do you love the taste of an chocolate pretzel? Okay, now imagine that mixture of sweet chocolate mixed with a salty pretzel in the form of a brownie. Ah- Maze- Ing. 
These literally are the simplest thing to make also. Because all you need is brownie mix and some pretzels. That's it!


Boxed brownie mix (get ingredients according to package)
2/3 cup broken pretzels


Mix brownies according to package. Measure out 2/3 cup of broken pretzels. I used pretzel thins, because that's all I had in the house that night. Crush them into small pieces and mix into your batter. Bake according to package. I added in a few more pieces before placing in the oven. 
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Monday, October 10, 2016

Currently | October

This month I'm joining Anne from In Residence and Jacqui from Drink the Day for their monthly link up of what is currently going on! Boy has my life been a whirl wind these past couple months and will only be getting busier, but I wouldn't have it any other way! So check out my currently's below.

cheers-ing: Only a few week's til our Honeymoon or maybe we should call in a baby-moon?? Either way I'm so excited to skip out on reality for a full 10 days. We will be stopping in San Diego for two nights before heading to Hawaii! 
Image result for honolulu hawaii
image via

organizing: My life. At work I've been redoing and sorting through all my files and organizing everything. Maybe it's nesting setting in already, but I want to be as organized as possible before I will be out on Maternity leave.

dreaming: I've been having really strange dreams lately, usually of things I watch before I go to bed. My mind has been racing and it sometimes is hard to fall asleep at night.

buying: Fall decor and things for Halloween. Since we won't be home for Halloween, my mom plans on taking Charger trick or treating in her town! We decided he wanted to be like his Uncle Dale and dress as a Police Officer and he may be the cutest officer I've even seen. Here's a sneak peak of his costume

listening: At work my Pandora is set to shuffle. One of my stations is a Christmas one and every time a Christmas song comes on it makes me so excited and happy for that time of year to get here. For as much as I love Summer, there is something about November & December that I love and get excited for!

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Wednesday, October 5, 2016


I've been a little absent from this blog parts and I promise it's for a good reason! 

If you follow me on instagram, then you know on Monday I had a huge announcement.

That's right. Coming in April, our world is about to get turned upside down (in a good way). 

Some of you may be thinking, 'Wow that was fast', but I truly believe everything happens for a reason. Joe and I are so excited and can't wait to be parents. 

More to come on how we found out we were expecting and how we told our families so stick around. 

Even though I am pregnant, this blog will not be filled with baby bump pictures (I have actually not taken one yet) or baby stuff galore. Not much will change from the norm, but I do ask you to bear with me as things are about to get a lot crazier around here :)

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Friday, September 30, 2016

My Fall Favorites

I haven't been on quite a shopping kick lately, which is odd for me considering it's a new season so that means all new clothes, right!! But I did pick up a few key pieces that I have a feeling will be on constant rotation through out the fall season. 
Monogrammed Necklace
Rain Boots
Blanket Scarf
The monogrammed necklace my husband actually purchased for me after I kept hinting I wanted one. I got it in silver with my new initials aMm.  The rain boots I purchased on a whim from since they were at a much lower price them department stores and through hunter. I'm thankful for this purchase since we are having downpours all week. Plus I find the shorter ones are much easier to drive in then the tall ones. Some of the other things I purchased are just staples to wear to work, date nights and even those chilly football games!

What are some fall pieces you picked up already or plan to?

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Friday, September 16, 2016

Our Wedding- The Details

When I started planning our wedding, immediately my head started spinning with so many ideas and little details. Although most people probably overlooked the details that I worked so hard to do, I know what they were and loved it all! 
Let's start with the Ceremony! There wasn't too much details here because I wanted it to focus on the actual wedding and not the little things. One thing the photographer didn't catch was the adorable bottles of bubbles that were shaped like brides and grooms.

For the church pews I made the decorations using white tulle and pink peonies, babies breathe and select ones had hand written reserved signs. 

For the ceremony programs, I designed them to reflect our invitations.  They were two sided glossy trifolds.. hey we had a lot of info to tell everyone!!

When guests walked into the church they were greeted with a basket of crocheted handkerchiefs for their ' Tears of Joy'! I wish I had a better photo, but my guests took them all before my photographer could snap a photo just like the bubbles!

Where do I even begin with the details at the reception??

Well... let me start with cocktail hour. Our signature drink was A Pirate Flag and an Island Girl. If you are unsure what this is in reference to, look up Kenny Chesney's lyrics here..

During cocktail hour we also had a Cigar bar with custom match books, personalized koozies on some tables, and our feature of each person in our wedding party and how we meet/ know them.
Because some relatives might not no our whole 'love story' we let everyone take a trip down memory lane with us. 

At the conclusion of cocktail hour, our guest were shown to upstairs where they found their escort cards. These were made with hand cut shells with everyone's names, meals and table number listed.

At the entrance of the ball room, is where we put our 'photo booth'. I purchased four polaroid camera for our guests to strike a pose with using some fun props! I loved seeing everyones pictures, especially since they used our hashtag #itsagreatdaytobeaMELCH

Once inside the Grand Ballroom, guest found their tables which also had little memories or meanings to each number. For example table 21.. 'The Day in March He Proposed', or table 6.. "Number of Years They Dated"  

Each table also had a special Thank You with the menu for the night for all our guests. I made the centerpieces that also includes starfish on each table. 

The tables that were in the balcony area sat some of our friends with their own personal bar! Their centerpieces were lighthouse lanterns to match our beachy theme/proposal!

Joey and I both put hot sauce on everything, so it would only be right to use hot sauce as our favor to our guest. Check out the labels here

Our guest book consisted of a hard cover book with our engagement pictures! It also is where guests left us well wishes and advice. It was so fun reading them all!

We decided to have flip-flops available for all those that wanted to get their groove on without hurting their feet. They were a huge hit!

No party would be complete without tons and tons of Italian cookies. There was 25 different kinds to be exact and my momma and her cousins homemade them all! Let's just say they didn't last very long!

Instead of the typical wedding cake, and because I love every and all cupcakes. We wanted to incorporate that into our wedding. We did a personal Chocolate and Banana top layer for us and family and different cupcakes for everyone else. Our cake toppers ended up being too heavy to place on top, but thankfully Charger's custom topper fit perfectly!

So there you have most of our little wedding details! There are so many more, but I'll not bore you with the rest. Now can we go back and do this day again. It was so much fun!

All photos unless otherwise stated were taken by DeLorenzo Photography
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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Back to School Essentials for College Students

Just like that you wake up one morning and it's been TEN years since I moved into my freshman dorm room. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT. It still seems weird that I have been out of school for 6 years considering I get carded at a casino (you have to be 18 to gamble mind you)! It doesn't help that I also am constantly around college students, being a coach at a college... it makes me feel young!
If I could go back in time what are some things I would change. Well for one, I wouldn't act like I knew it all and that my parents were actually RIGHT! But there are some things I would and wouldn't bring to college with me! 
Robe | In dorms there are constantly people walking around, both boys & girls. If you have the perfect body and don't care who see's you in a towel, then skip to the next essential! However, if you are like me or the rest of the universe of women, I would invest in a robe to roam the halls to get to the shower. Another big thing is have plenty of towels. Think one for your hair, your body and then I always took one with me when I brushed my teeth. I didn't want to use a paper towel to wipe my face, so that was an important one!

Comfortable Laundry Basket | Most dorms have their laundry located on the basement or bottom floor. If you are fortunate enough to get an elevator in your building then more power to you.. if not, this will be one of your best friends. I never liked one of those nap sack looking laundry bins, because I like to have my clothes nice an folded. Plus I didn't want my dirty laundry hanging up somewhere for everyone to see (literally & figuratively)

ID Holder | Your ID or student card will be your lifeline. You will need this to access your dorm, for you meals, and probably even to get into some academic buildings. If you find one where you are able to keep your key on it's a double win! 

Rain Boots | Here's a hint.. colleges don't close for rain, sleet or snow. Unless you get 30 inches like last winter and the school can't clean the lots fast enough! So, one of the best things I could have invested in.. A good pair of rain boots to wear in all weather. Nothing is worse then sitting through a three hour lab with soaking wet UGG's. 

So who's ready to go back to school? I wish I was returning! 
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Thursday, August 11, 2016

Chicken Fajitas


    For the Chicken Fajitas

    • 1lb chicken breast sliced thinly
    • 2tbsp parsley 
    • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 tsp dried oregano
    • 1/2 tsp hot sauce 
    • 1/2 tsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
    • Juice of half a lime
    For the Peppers and Onions
    • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
    • 1 green pepper, thinly sliced
    • 1/2 of a yellow onion, thinly sliced
    • 1/2 tsp salt


    In a large bowl, mix all fajita ingredients except the chicken breast and lime juice. Once mixed, add in the chicken breast and cover completely with the mixture. Place in refrigerator for 10-15 minutes to marinate. While that is marinating, place your peppers and onions, salt and EVOO into a skillet. Let them get a little brown and will start to soften up. By this time, your chicken should be good to go. Add your marinated chicken into your skillet. Cook until no longer pink. Remove form skillet and serve immediately. 

    I enjoyed mine on tortillas, but you can substitute lettuce wraps also. Add added shredded cheese and salsa!

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