Thursday, November 20, 2008

a first!


I had kind of wished I had been tagged before (which is kinda weird for me since I am the girl who will delete every recipe exchange e-mail I get, etc.) and now I have been.

The way this tag works is that you go to your fourth picture folder and go to the fourth photo and post it and write four things about it. Fun!

I loved the anticipation of finding out what my fourth/fourth photo was going to be. And I am excited that it is such a fun one for me to share with you.

1. Yep, that's a cereal box and it's hanging on my old front door. :)

2. I used to host a small group from my church on Sunday nights. We would have dinner together every week. (There is power in being around the dinner table sharing food and fellowship, people. I am a big believer in this.)

3. Is anyone else like me when you walk up and down the cereal aisle? Do you sometimes want to try new things but the thought of busting nearly FOUR dollars out of your wallet makes you hold back and stick to the tried and true?

4. We decided to have cereal night with my small group and it was such a hit we decided to do it about once a quarter. Here's how it works and you can host your own cereal night!

The hostess provides bowls and spoons. You can work it out if you want the hostess to provide the milk or if you want a guest of two to bring milk. Then everybody brings a box of cereal, something new to try, childhood favorite, whatever and everyone pours a bowl or two or five to eat for dinner! It is greatness!

Have you ever done anything like this? If you try it I would love to hear about it. What is your favorite "guilty pleasure" cereal? Mine's Lucky Charms. :)

Happy Thanksgiving! Kelly


p.s. I tag anyone else who like me always wanted to be tagged but hasn't ever been.
Let me know if you're participating. I'd love to come over and see your fourth picture. :)


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

spice


What can I say?




We just really like to spice up our life!




a lot!


What's the one spice you always buy when it's listed in a recipe thinking you don't have it but then you really do, ending up with 10?  
What is your "go to" spice?


Saturday, November 15, 2008

thanksgiving is almost here!


I have been working on this a good part of today and just wanted to show it to you.  
I really like the way it turned out!

I made it with these flashcards, pages from an old falling apart hymnal missing it's front cover, pages from a cookbook in similar shape and scrapbook paper left over from our wedding.  Oh, and ribbon from the Michael's $1 ribbon bin and scraps I'd kept.  

Here is some context of where it is. It is hanging from the ceiling in my dining room above my Ikea shelves.  

What are you doing on this fall Saturday?  
What are you thankful for?  

Friday, November 14, 2008

DIY project - the dessert buffet

My mom and I loved to dream about my wedding years in advance.  We had so much fun dreaming up different ideas.  One idea that was born late one night in a Chicago hotel room when we were on a girls' trip, staying up late talking was that of a family and friends dessert buffet.  

Three words that described what I wanted my wedding to be like are:  personal, unique and celebratory.  We thought that having family and friends bring special desserts would be a way of making the wedding very personal.  

My mom really spearheaded this for me.  (Thank you soo much, Mom!)  We sent a letter to various family members and friends who were invited to the wedding asking them if they would like to participate by bringing a dessert and e-mailing my mom with a little "story" about their dessert, why they chose it or whatever.  The response was overwhelming and so, so much fun.  

My friend Marla brought cookies that were her husband's childhood favorite, my friend Jenni brought a cake that I have had the pleasure of eating with her on many occasions, my friend Jenny brought monkey bread since this is what her mother made on special occasions to share with others when she was growing up.  My friend Jenny brought Dunkin' Donut holes!  We went to Cape Cod together one summer and I thought it would be fun to try to count how many Dunkin' Donuts we saw.  :)  My friend Tiffany made cupcakes.  My mother-in-law brought her to die for pralines.  Mrs. Lea brought an Italian cream cake.  My friend Deborah made her Mamaw's cream cheese pound cake that I had made for her for her birthday one year when we were college roommates.  My sister-in-law brought some very yummy cookies.  My friend Betty made rosemary cookies with homegrown rosemary and brought them from Alaska!  Adrian's grandma and a close family friend both brought delicious brownies from each of their special recipes.  My aunts and uncles made sugar cookies, divinity, fudge and rented a cotton candy machine!  Even people who couldn't come to the wedding sent things!  It just went on and on . . . I know there are tons that I'm forgetting even as I type this.  

It was such a blessing and a special and popular part of our wedding celebration.  Our day of wedding coordinator packed up some of the offerings for us and we ate them on our honeymoon!  Such a fun way to extend the celebration.  

So, from a set-up standpoint, here are some pictures of how we did it.  
 

Remember these baskets that we found?  

Well, using some patterned scrapbook paper in the colors of the wedding, I cut out circles to line the baskets, free handed a slit up the side and a little circle out of the middle to fit in the baskets.  

like so . . . 
I also cleaned out and used some jars that I already had
and using yet more of the scrapbook paper from one of those big pads (where all the papers coordinate) and my xyron machine, I typed up some labels, printed on the paper cut down from 12x12 to standard 8 1/2 x 11, cut with pinking shears, ran through the xyron and then stuck down onto the jar over top of the seam binding "ribbon". I loved the way they looked.  There were also extra labels in case we needed them that day.  

I used these to hold the "stories" that my mom typed up on white cardstock and glued over the info on some leftover invitations from one of my showers!  They were so beautiful, it was senseless to let them go to waste!  

Here is a picture of the set up with my rented robin's egg blue tablecloths and the runners that my Aunt Gail and Aunt Terry so generously sewed for me!  I had also been collecting glass cake stands for a few years as I went to antique shops, flea markets, etc. and my grandma and mom also bought some and loaned some to me.  

Some friends from church came over and helped me make these little banners.  Again, that pad of coordinating scrapbook papers came into play, I typed and printed our names, cut them into strips, notched the ends and threaded them onto the skewers.  

If you were at the wedding, what were some of the desserts that you really enjoyed on the dessert buffet?  Kelly

Thursday, November 13, 2008

our church shower

This is way after the fact and once again blogger is loading my pictures in reverse order and I forgot to "trick it" but I wanted to write a post about our church shower especially since some of the hostesses are frequent readers of my blog.  I wanted to give them a shout out!  


We had such a good time and so many people came!  I was so pleasantly surprised as we have been going to church there for less than a year.  It was such a blessing to see people of all ages come and surround us with love and support.  

These are our hostesses and the lovely table that they set!  Can you believe those are real flowers?  They were really neat.  

It was really neat too that my mom and aunt were able to come.  They were in town "evacuating" from hurricane Ike in Houston and so were able to attend my shower.  Such fun!  

Thank you so much!  Kelly

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

more pom poms!

such fun!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

the pom poms!



Oh the pom poms!

They were such, such fun!

this was definitely one of those ideas that evolved during the wedding planning. Having five nephews between us three and under, we quickly decided on no child attendants. They were just too little. So . . . my mom had that great idea to have all of the kids stand in the aisle as we were recessing and throw something at us.

well, as time went on we decided to have everyone throw these pom poms at us during the recessional. I am so glad we did! It was one of my favorite parts.

My sweet mom and my aunt Kim and my Sweetie and Poppy (my grandparents) filled little cellophane bags, topped them with paper in lots of different patterns of paper that went with our colors and just stapled them shut. As simple as that! They could be done way ahead of time rather than trying to bag rose petals at the last minute and we laid a package on every chair.

And this is how it turned out!

greatness!

Thanks to everyone who came to our wedding and threw pom poms at us!

If you were at our wedding, what did you think when you got to your chair and saw a bag of fuzzy pom pom balls? I'd love to hear your thoughts, your perspective, etc. Kelly

Monday, November 10, 2008

dessert cook-off results

Well, I'm sad to say that I didn't win any prizes, BUT I did have a great time and receive some nice compliments!  We have a fun church and a wonderful church family.  

Here is my friend Renae's SUPER YUMMY "Gobbler Cobbler".  Let me tell you, this is the second time I've had this dessert of hers and it just about sends me over the edge every time!  It is soo good!  And look how cute her little turkey and label are!  

Yea Renae!  



Here's the neat ariel shot of my cupcakes that my sweet husband took.  

There they are with the banana puddings, dirt cake (with the flowers in it) etc.

I made the same cupcakes that I made here but PLEASE everyone, I beg of you, when the recipe says unsalted butter, please, PLEASE use unsalted butter!  It sabotaged my icing but live and learn, right?  My freezer is now stocked with unsalted butter.  :)  


My friend Jacquie did win though!!!  There is her award winning banana pudding right there, #15!  Yea Jacquie!  Great job!  Kelly

before and after

Yes!  I loaded my pictures "backwards" fully expecting blogger to do something crazy like load them in the correct order this time, but it's still loading backwards so now they're right!  Hooray!  

So, this was our cabinet "before"



that bottom shelf of our "everyday" dishes was pretty bare

And then!  Poof!  

After:  


Some of Adrian's friends bought SIX place settings for us!  
What a blessing!  Amazing!  Thank you so much!  



Sunday, November 9, 2008

wish me luck!

I'm entering a dessert cook-off at our church tonight.  Wish me luck!  Kelly

first married meal!

"What?!" you say, "You haven't eaten in over a month?"
Well, no one said blogging had to be extremely timely did they?
Of course we ate on our honeymoon. I guess our first true married meal was lunch at the airport version of Blue Mesa after the super nice hotel man took all of our luggage all the way to the baggage check in at the airport straight from our hotel room on those fancy little carts they have. (Fancy!) After all that deluxe service we had plenty of time to chow down on some airport food to satisfy our growling stomachs.
In San Francisco where we honeymooned we had some wonderfully appealing sourdough, gnocchi, polenta with Bolognese sauce in San Fran's "Little Italy" at Pinnochio's. If you're ever in San Fran, I would *highly* recommend it! We had a decadent Ghiradelli hot fudge sundae and breakfast at Sear's Fine Foods and sat just inside that little window you can see in the pic on the website looking out onto the street. We saw another pair of newlyweds getting into their shoe polished car. :) The service and food at Sears were top-rate! Chocolate croissants complimentary at our hotel were a treat as were the Lindt truffles piled in a bowl at our B&B in Santa Cruz! (um . . . Kelly, chocolate is not a meal . . . getting back on track). We splurged on a fancy dinner at Shadowbrook in Capitola-by-the-Sea and happened upon a goat dairy in Pescadero where we indulged in flavored goat cheeses that we ate at an idyllic picnic spot behind the grocery there with fresh bread and salami.
So, all that to say that we ate well, but back to the point, this post is about our first married meal at home that we cooked and where we broke out those new wedding gifts we were just itching to use!
Unfortunately blogger loaded all of my photos in reverse order so just bear with me. :)


Here is the finished meal served on our new dishes!
dishes: Staccato from Crate and Barrell

broccolini cooking in one of our new all-clad pots!


an adorable little whisks with hearts tied onto one of our packages in one of our new pyrex bowls! (Thanks, Aunt Gail and Uncle Terry, Stacie, Mike, Jenny, Jon and Bethany!)

hey, Rice-a-roni may not be the classiest way to inaugurate the new all-clad but we went to SAN FRANCISCO for our honeymoon! You know, "Rice-a-roni, the San Francisco treat!" (You'll be singing that all day now, sorry!)

The ingredients!

Yum!

We are so enjoying being married and making a home together. Thank you to all of you who blessed us with so many nice gifts to feather our nest with and try out our culinary skills with! Kelly

Friday, November 7, 2008

oops!

Sandy over at Reluctant Entertainers posted a confession about dropping an egg on the floor. I don't know if that was in my subconscious or what when I became butter fingers yesterday while putting away the groceries Adrian bought. I almost dropped the carton of eggs, recovered and then really did drop them! Oh dear!

Well, when life gives you spilled eggs . . . blog about it, right?

So once again blogger is importing my pics in reverse order (grr) so I'll just blog backwards I guess. :)

exhibit A: a nice, beautiful egg, ummm . . . just waiting to go into some yummy dish



exhibit B: my enamelware bowl full of eggs. I'm pretending we live on a farm. Who wouldn't love to live on a farm for a week or so?

(sidenote: every Easter of my childhood we would go to my grandparents' house and have a big egg hunt with all of the cousins. At the end we would play with the eggs. The playhouse became a barn/henhouse where we would set all of the colored hardboiled eggs on the various ledges and then take our baskets and go and gather the eggs. Can you say city girl who's read a farm book or two? Then my grandma would have us put all the eggs in a pile in the middle and we would go around the circle and each pick an egg to keep, then go around again and so forth until all the eggs were divied up fair and square.)


exhibit C: goopy egg mess sliming out of the carton (only two cracked thankfully!)


exhibit D: oops! the egg carton fell right out of my hands and onto the kitchen floor


so, I'll end with a question, how long will that second egg whose shell was cracked but which did not leak so I poured it into a handy little prep bowl with lid (a gift from my mom!) last in the fridge? I don't have any plans for cooking/baking with an egg tonight but I'm sure I could think of soon.

So, if you can answer this question, I would love to know (Deborah, I'm pegging you as one of the most likely to know) and if you have a suggestion of what sort of yummy nummy dish I should make with that egg that so nearly lost it's life, I would love to hear that as well! Thanks! Have a marvelous weekend! Kelly

where I blog

I've seen before on other's blogs a pic of where they blog from.  I don't know why but I always find it so interesting to see the pictures of the places people are when they're putting themselves out there for us all to read.  This is my spot.  The ice cream is a pretty standard feature at the computer.  :)  

Where do you blog?  I'd love to see a pic.  Put one on your blog and link over here and leave a comment saying you put up a post with where you blog and we'll all see each others!  Kelly

Thursday, November 6, 2008

my dress

I will be able to share professional pictures with you pretty soon I think.  Hopefully by Thanksgiving for sure!  I thought I'd give you a preview of my dress.

This top pic was taken during the ceremony while our brothers prayed over us and the joining of our two families and our families lovingly surrounded us.  


This photo was taken way back in July at the bridal shop.  It's not the greatest picture but I like how it shows off the cathedral length veil.  It is the veil that my mom wore down the aisle on her wedding day 36 years ago!  

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

happy fall!

for those of you who know anything about plants, this photo was actually taken last May in Chicago but I liked the fallish hues in the photo.  Hope you're having a good day!  Kelly

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

please vote

Please vote today if you haven't already. It's important.

Please vote in an educated manner. Seriously, it only took me only 20 minutes to google "my county voter's guide" and learn about the different candidates on my ballot. State Board of Education, Judges, Congressmen, etc., etc. to make educated decisions.

If you're dreading waiting in line today, check out emily's post about overhearing interesting conversations around her in line. Take a book. Enjoy the "mind break".

Thanks. It's important. May God bless our country on this important day. Kelly

p.s. If you need added incentive, my friend Julie left the following comment on my last post. :)

"note also that most STARBUCKS locations will give out a free tall coffee to anyone on Tuesday who tells them that they voted. :o]"
Also, I just saw this about free scoops from Ben and Jerry's tonight between 5 & 8! Yippee! Love me some Ben and Jerry's. What's your favorite flavor? My current favorite is Creme Brulee but it changes quite often. :)