Now that I’m 2 months into being 30, it might be time to finally post the awesomeness that was my 30th birthday party!! To cap off the week of festivities, I had a bunch of girlfriends over and we had a Girl Scout Cookie & wine pairing party! Such a great time! My bestie, Laura, took care of all the details — she even made adorable personalized labels for mini wine bottle party favors and made buttons to look like Girl Scout patches to commemorate everyone’s solid effort and participation in the eating of cookies and drinking of wine. Then it was all topped off with a Samoa-inspired birthday cake! I am so blessed! Hope the next 10 months of 30 are as great as the past 2!
The weeks of summer are flying by! And the weekends are definitely not long enough. This weekend was pretty tiring but I accomplished a lot. Started the day on Saturday with a spur of the moment morning run along the Alexandria waterfront. The humidity made it pretty stifling – it has been sooooo hot all week, but I definitely felt better for having a workout out of the way. Then I spent the afternoon at the pool tanning, relaxing, and getting in a mini pool workout. I found some awesome pool workouts a couple weeks ago and have been trying to integrate them into my routine of the week. Now, the workouts are seriously good, but the execution is a little silly. A few of them require a kickboard and now that stores like Target have cleared summer supplies to make space for back-to-school stuff, the pickins’ were a little slim. Sooooo I had to buy a kid’s one. I bought one for a friend too so that I could talk her into joining me for pool workouts in hopes that I’d look a little less ridiculous, but I think maybe it only looks a little funnier 🙂 oh well!
Check them out!
Then today I did a donut making class through Living Social – it took place at their offices in DC and was put on by a DC shop called District Doughnut. This was the first time I have ever fried anything!! Such a fun class! And the donuts were amazing!!!!!
A coworker sent me home with a couple tomatoes on Friday that I have been dying to turn into bruschetta from the moment I saw them. So I diced them up with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, my fresh basil (getting sooooo much use out of it this summer!!!), and garlic. And then had my salad obsession: the watermelon/feta/balsamic.
Been adding some posts to the b+l bakehouse blog — after getting a little press from the wedding last weekend I figured it was time to update a little and make spark some orders 🙂
Well, this is a few weeks late but time has been flying! I really love Easter and the little traditions that have formed since moving to DC 6 1/2 years ago (wow, time REALLY flies!).
Tradition #1: Sunrise service at Arlington National Cemetery
I absolutely love this part of the day. Of Easter events in DC, this one is never overcrowded and unmanageable. It is peaceful and perfect. There is nothing quite as wonderful as celebrating eternal life surrounded by so many of our nation’s heroes. It always gives me chills.
Tradition #2: Trip to get coffee post sunrise service. This is a must!
Tradition #3: A mid-morning nap which also serves as a time to warm back up under the cozy covers because Easter sunrise service in DC is generally 30-40 degrees and leaves one in a little bit of a popsicle state. Brrr!
Tradition #4: A mad scurry to finish all of the baking and making for Easter dinner (see #5) and inevitably making a game time decision to add more to the menu.
Tradition #5: Easter dinner! We usually have a big group of friends over around 2 dinner. We start with appetizers while the ham is still baking and then transition to dinner at about 3. We usually make the ham, an appetizer, and one (or more…..) desserts, then everyone else brings a dish (and/or the traditional Easter dinner sangria in the case of one couple who always comes). It is such a great time to celebrate with our great friends who are like family to us.
Here are a bunch of pictures from the day! We made Biscoff Cream Eggs and the usual Martha Stewart carrot cake with orange ginger cream cheese frosting and candied carrots on top. Then a game time decision was made to run to the store an hour before our guests arrived to get the ingredients to make bacon jam. The ham we made was a bourbon brown sugar recipe. And our friends brought broccoli salad, potatoes, we had homemade flatbreads with butternut squash, blue cheese and candied walnuts on top, then rolls, caesar salad, green bean casserole, and sangria!
FINALLY it was time to adorn the walls with some decor after the move in August. It seemed like the perfect excuse to revamp the overall feel of the decor so we finally figured it out! I like to think it is a shabby chic twist.
I got 8 frames at Goodwill for about $18 which I was really pumped about. The artwork in some of them was really amusing! We decided to leave some of it in there for now while we keep evolving the art selections, but I think we ended up with a fun layout after we painted a couple frames, painted a mat, and then went to town finding quirky things to fill them with. Once the art was added I’d say we totaled out at about $25 spent. Score! Stay tuned for the other Living Room DIY artwork!
The Goodwill art pre-refurbishment
Taping up paper to mock up the wall layout
The weekend of the bachelorette party was also the weekend of another good friend’s baby shower and I was asked to make cake pops. I have to say, I officially have decided to never feel bad about refusing to make cake pops. They are so tough. I lost many a good pop to gravity during the time the chocolate was hardening. They are a nightmare and I don’t know how people are successful at them. But they quickly became upside pops and I was just fine with that. I think they looked great in the end, but I still can’t get over how defeating they are!