Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Jumble of Random Things

How was everyone's Thanksgiving? Delicious? Fun? More deliciousness? Yes, that's what I thought! You know how your body is 80% water (or something like that) on a regular, non-holiday season basis? My body is currently made of 80% wine and turkey. Don't make me prove it.

Did I mention it was my birthday Monday of this week? Must of slipped my mind. Yup, 29. So I added to the wine and turkey coma by drowning the last year of my 20s in more wonderful treats. Once a year though, right? Speaking of my birthday, I got some fabulous gifts. Some from others and some purchased by yours truly...hee hee. Check out some of my faves - my in-laws gave me these!

Is it dorky to use a clipboard? Maybe...but when you are walking around commanding (ha!) an event, you need something hard to write on. It's just a fact. Since my old clipboard looks like it's been run over by a tractor trailer, I asked for a new one for my b-day... I LOVE! Plus it says my name so I'll never forget it :)



Next up in the monogram family is this awesome tray. Wouldn't this be perfect for entertaining or storing magazines or books on the coffee table? Something doesn't look right, though...


Oh right, it's missing my glass of wine accessory. Hee-hee.


On to the next random thing... my latest Tablespoon article about Books and Food. I can't speak to Book Club lately since I have been ...let's just call it... a non-attendee. But if I WERE going to host Book Club, I would look into these ideas :)

Article Link HERE

Next up, you might have noticed that my blog looks a little different... a little cleaner and a little more...awesome. I'm working on a brand rehaul for 2012, and the FABULOUS Jessi Connolly from Naptime Diaries is giving me a hand. A huge hand. Jessi is a best friend to my best friend...does that make sense? So I think that makes us friends. And she has 3 kids and still manages to have the best hair ever. (Please note that I have zero kids and my hair goes up in a ponytail at about 8:45 a.m. each day.)

Check out Jessi's Etsy Shop where you can buy custom printed everything and have your blogged worked on.

Oh, and did I mention that Jessi created my fabulous holiday e-ad below? Email me if you are stuck on ideas for your last minute holiday parties...I do email consulting, in person consulting, menu planning and of course full event planning.


So, to sum it up:

1) I have 1 year until the big 3-0. Yikes.
2) I got some sweet monogrammed items for my b-day. 
3) Entertaining with books and food is fun.
4) Jessi from Naptime Diaries is awesome and I'm slightly obsessed with her.
5) I can make your holiday party fa-la-la-fantastic. 

Capish? 

Thanks for those of you that are still reading to the end of this random mumbo jumbo. Love you :)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Last Minute Thanksgiving Centerpieces...and a trip to Texas!

Happy ALMOST Thanksgiving!  If you are looking for a last minute centerpiece for your holiday table, these gems from Better Homes and Garden's website are easy and beautiful. You can find most of these items at the grocery store or around your house, so don't fret!

These stacked teacups make an impact!


Use branches and mini pumpkins hung with twine to achieve this look!


Use butternut squash shells as vases...then use the butternut squash for a casserole for Thanksgiving - efficiency at its best!



Same thing with the pumpkin vase - Use the pumpkin for pie and the shell for displaying autumn flowers.


Mr. Fo and I are are spending Thanksgiving in....



That's right. I consider myself fairly well traveled (within the U.S. at least) but I've never been to Texas! Good thing my dad moved there earlier this year so I could find out if everything is in fact bigger in Texas. And also good for me because you know I'm getting some authentic cowboy boots. My dad lives in Houston, more specifically in the Memorial area of Houston. For all my Houston friends - if you know of any good restaurants, shops or activities in the Memorial area of Houston - do tell!

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Eating! I'll be back next week :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

DERN GOOD PIES!

This past weekend when I was enjoying the Sunday paper and a nap, I stumbled along Parade Magazine's "In Pie We Trust" article. The article had droolworthy pictures and recipes, as well as a little pie history. If it's about food, I'm definitely in, so I devoured the article...the whole time realizing I don't think I've ever made a pie. I mean, I've used pre-made pie crust before, and made little tarts and quiches, but I've never made a pie crust from scratch. 

Shame! If anyone has a good, fool-proof pie crust recipe, please send it over asap so I can remedy this immediately. Here are some of the delicious pies from Parade. You can find all of the recipes and pie history  HERE. 

(Note: If you dont take the time to read your Sunday paper, you should. It's fun and interesting and has wonderful articles. Plus it has Parade magazine which is awesome and provides celebrity gossip.)

CHERRY!
CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT - OMG THIS LOOKS AMAZING


PECAN - MR. FO'S FAVORITE :)



If you're in the mood for pie, but you're new to pie world, I suggest making these. Easy and absolutely adorable - these mini pumpkin pie bites from the amazing Bakerella are the perfect treat. Make them for Thanksgiving if you don't want to fuss with the real stuff.



Pumpkin Pie Bites
2 refrigerated ready-to roll pie crusts
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Pumpkin-shaped cookie cutter
Optional
1/2 cup chocolate morsels
vegetable oil
re-sealable plastic bags
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use cookie cutter to cut 12 pumpkin shapes from each pie crust. You will need to roll the dough thinner than it comes out of the box. Press dough shapes into a 24 cup mini muffin tray. (Make 12 at a time, alternating cups to make sure pie crusts don’t overlap each other.)
Apply egg whites from one egg to the top edges of each pie.
Mix cream cheese, sugar, canned pumpkin, remaining 2 eggs, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice together until thoroughly combined.
Spoon mixture into each pumpkin-shaped pie crust.
Bake for 12-15 minutes.
Remove pies to cool and repeat with second pie crust. Place the muffin tray in the freezer to cool it quickly for re-use. Makes 24 pies. Keep refrigerated.

To decorate, melt chocolate in a heat-proof bowl in the microwave on medium. Heat in 30 second intervals, stirring in between until melted. Add a little vegetable oil to make the chocolate more fluid. Transfer to a re-sealable plastic bag and cut the corner off. Drizzle or draw faces on pies.

Note: The cutter I used was 3 3/4 inches wide, but if you don’t have one, don’t worry. Just use a round cutter around that size or slightly smaller to cut circle shapes out of the dough. Then make stems with the scraps. 

Press each stem over the edge and down the side of the dough before filling.

Pumpkin pie spice is a mixture of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice.

Enjoy!




Yum Yum Yum! I can just see myself popping a few...or 10... of these in my mouth! I think i will make these for Thanksgiving and/or for my birthday in a few week

But seriously guys - send me your pie crust recipes or leave a comment. I want to at least make an attempt before I surrender to a life of pre-made pie crust. Whether you go pre-made or homemade, pie is just dern good. And no, I didn't misspell it, I meant to say dern. 

Have a great week!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Misty and Jared Wedding Photos!

Yea, it's Friday! And I have a free weekend...and I plan to be straight up chillin' yo... Awesome!

Let's talk a little about how lucky I've been to have such sweet brides/grooms/families to work with on my marathon of wedding coordination I handled this fall. Misty and Jared were no exception - they are seriously so SWEET and were so excited to marry each other. Loved them!
Misty claims she's not good at this type of "planning" stuff, but she seriously rocked! She was so organized and had these great ideas that came to life beautifully. I'd hire her ANY time! 

The theme was romantic and rustic, with tons of candles, white flowers and that awesome burlap I have seen so much lately. Their wedding was at the Trolley Museum, where I do a lot of my events. Let's take a look, shall we?

Guests were welcomed by this cute chalkboard sign:


How cute are they? Check out their photos below.


 Their new last name will be Taft, so Misty made these awesome burlap covered letters she hung from inside the trolley.


I loved their favors so much. One of their friends took this really neat picture of the Charlotte skyline and they made them in to postcards for everyone to take home.



Let's talk flowers and glass jars. Misty had a vision in her head that involved all white flowers, greenery, tons of candles and many, MANY different sized glass bottles and jars. We did several mock-ups of the table, and I think they turned out so pretty! They looked so great at night. If you like this idea and are planning a wedding or event, start collecting glass jars! Wine bottles, peanut butter jars, everything that's glass works!





They used Plate Perfect catering, and if you are in Charlotte, definitely check them out. They are awesome! They own restaurants Mama Ricottas, Cantina, Big Daddy's, Midwood Smokehouse and more!
Their food displays are always pretty and they are great to work with!


Misty and Jared's friends were so helpful, it was really sweet. They made her entire dessert table, and it was wiped out by the end of the night! People LOOOOVED these desserts.



 

I loved the simple white cake.


The cake pops were displayed in bowls filled with sand. Very clever!


A final shot I took from above. 


Misty and Jared, you guys were such a pleasure to work with! Congratulations and Best Wishes!!!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, November 7, 2011

A Pink, White and Gray Birthday Bash!

This past weekend we celebrated my sister-in-law Drew's 30th birthday with a Wine and Cake Party! I tried to plan a simple yet chic evening, at a wine bar in Charlotte's South End called Vinmaster
I think it turned out really great!

Check out the Vinmaster's cool decor!


The underlying theme was based off Drew's favorite store of all time: J. Crew...aptly re-named for the evening, J. Drew. The colors were pink, white and gray.
Party time!

I ordered invites from my fav party girl - Jess at Party Box Design. Thanks Jess!! How cute are these invites? You can order these at her shop :)

Jess also made me these fantastic cocktail tags!



I made this simple bunting using gray and pink scrabpook paper. I love the look of bunting!




I made pink and white flower arrangements using white hydrangeas and pink flowers. I used mercury glass vases and votives. I really loved the way the flower arrangements turned out (if I do say so myself)!





For the J. Drew elements, I had Blis (a fabulous gift store in Charlotte) create a personalized wine glass.


My friend Hillary created these cool J. Drew frames:


Finally, the fabulous, amazing J. Drew cake that looks like a J. Crew shopping bag! How awesome is this cake! If you are in Charlotte and want the contact info for this fabulous cake maker, shoot me an email. Check out more of Wendy's cakes here!





Happy Birthday Drew - Love you! 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Katie & Scott - Pictures are here!

I have a treat for you on this Thursday morning - beautiful photos from a wedding I coordinated back in September. I showed you my sub-par photos of Katie and Scott's adorable wedding HERE.  I've already gushed about Katie and Scott and how sweet and fun they are, but these pictures really show it.


Enough chatting - check out the photos that really capture the fun elements of Katie and Scott's big day.

PHOTO CREDIT: All of these photos were taken by  
Lauren Jackson Photography,
and they are truly gorgeous.

I love love love the invites. They were done by Morgan, who happens to be Katie's sister-in-law. Find her blog HERE, her company is called Miss Wyolene!






Love love love the cake and the whimsical "Let them eat cake" sign...
I may have to borrow this idea :)





This is probably my favorite picture! Love Katie's navy shoes :)



Seriously, how CUTE are they?! They are just as nice as they look :)


This picture just shows how fun they are - seriously, they're awesome!


Thanks Katie and Scott for being so fun to work with! Hope to see you kids around town :)