Thursday, November 29, 2012

Brady = 7 Years, Megan & Cameron = 4 Years!

Lots of celebrating going on today! Today marks 4 years of togetherness for Cameron and I and 7 years of aliveness for my sweet furry boy, Brady! Sadly, it also marks the one month countdown to my 29th birthday. Most people just about keel over when I tell them I'm almost 29. Thanks for those baby face genes, mom and dad. 

Anyway, here is a recap of the notable happenin's since our last anniversary:
-Carolina beat Clemson for the 3rd year in a row...and again this year for the 4th year in a row! Not rubbing it in or anything...
-We got engaged! 
- We had our first big party / oyster roast at our house. 
-Wedding planning like crazy, including engagement pictures!
-Went to Beech Mountain with a group of friends and had a blast. 
-Went to 6 weddings, including Savannah + Dan's and Jen + Joe's!
-Visited Washington, DC for the first time.
-Went to the PGA on Kiawah Island!

And here is how Brady spent his last year, in a nutshell:
-Lots of boat rides
-Got dressed up to meet his new girlfriend, Gracie (Emily's new golden retriever)
-Mysteriously grew black eyebrows (mwahahaha)
-Participated in our engagement pictures and my bridal portraits
-A trip to the Kiawah Island dog beach with his pals



Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wedding Wednesday: Moo Cards.

What is a moo card, you may ask?
Up until recently, I had no idea, but after doing some research I've found that they are tiny cards, about half the size of a business card, used for small bits of info in weddings, and in real life.
 
Their most common uses in weddings are for photographers to hand out at the wedding to the guests with the link to view the pictures taken.
source
Another use, and the one I'm considering, is to include in the invitation suite, to provide a link to your wedding website one last time. Mainly for accomodation options and directions to venue.
source
 
To moo, or not to moo, that is the question!
What are your thoughts on them??
 


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tasty Tuesday: Sausage Stuffed Zucchini Boats.

Now that the wedding is only 4 months away, I feel like I really need to start cracking down on the healthy eating. Gina's Skinnytaste recipes always taste amazing and are a little nicer on the hips. If I could ever get myself back in the gym, I'd be on a roll!

Sausage Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Recipe and photo from SkinnyTaste.

4 (31 oz total) medium zucchini
1 tsp oil
1/2 small onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
14 oz lean Italian chicken sausage, removed from casing (Al Fresco)
1/2 cup part skim shredded mozzarella (Polly-O)
8 tsp grated Parmesan cheese
 
 
Bring a large pot of water to boil.

Preheat oven to 400°. Cut zucchini in half lengthwise and using a spoon or melon baller, scoop out flesh, leaving 1/4" thick. Chop the scooped out flesh of the zucchini in small pieces and set aside.

Drop zucchini halves in boiling water and cook 1 minute. Remove from water.
 
Place 1/4 cup of sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 12" baking dish, and place zucchini halves cut side up.

In a large saute pan, brown sausage, breaking up as it cooks into smaller pieces until browned; set aside. Heat oil and add onion, garlic and bell pepper. Cook on a medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes, until onions are translucent. Add chopped zucchini, season with salt and pepper and cook about 2-3 minutes. Combine with sausage and cook a few more minutes
 
Using a spoon, fill each hollowed zucchini with 1/3 cup cooked sausage, pressing firmly. Top each with 2 tablespoons each of sauce, 1 tablespoon each of shredded mozzarella cheese and 1 teaspoon each of parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and bake 35 minutes until cheese is melted and zucchini is cooked through.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday Scores.

Hope everyone scooped up some great stuff on Black Friday and Cyber Monday!
 
On the wedding front, I bought the pom poms for our wedding exit and a little something extra to accompany our invitations.
 
On the clothing front, my Grandma Anna and I went shopping for my Christmas/Birthday presents. I told her I wanted to go to the outlets to get the most for my her money.
 
The J.Crew outlet was having 40% off the entire store!
(Online, they're offering 25% off + free shipping from the regular J.Crew store, and 50% off their Factory site! Don't forget to go through Ebates for 6% cash back!)
Here's what I scored, but sadly can't wear until Christmas.
pinks, green
 
I've been eyeing this blouse for quite some time and I'm so happy it's finally mine!
It was already marked 40% off, plus the storewide 40% off! Only a few XS's left ladies...
source
Love how this shirt is fitted, feminine, and not boxy.
source
Also got a shirt and dress at the Gap Outlet.
 
One more thing I picked up, but wasn't expecting to..
 
a new car battery! Woohoo!
 
My car wouldn't start Saturday night (after the BIG game. Woohoo! Go Gamecocks!!) and again this morning. So Cameron's brother came and jumped my car this morning so I could take it to the dealership. What a nice surprise right before Christmas.
 
What was your favorite item you scored this weekend or today?


Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012.

Round One - Bamberg, SC
Cotton / booze truck / me & Cameron.
 
Round Two - Summerville, SC
Family at my parents house / mom, me, sister sitting by fire
 


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tasty Tuesday: Favorite Thanksgiving Sides.

As I fast until Thanksgiving on Thursday (yeah, right) all I can think about are the yummy dishes that I'm going to be eating that day...twice. One meal with his family, one meal with mine. Back in the gym (for real this time, Emily!) on Monday.
 
Here are some of my favorite sides that will be served along with the fried turkey. :)
 
(My Aunt Cindy's specialty - she makes an extra dish of it just to give my parents...and I take some)
Rice & giblet gravy
(I'm not posting a recipe for giblet gravy..the ingredients are gross and I just have to not think about them when I'm eating it.)
 
What are your favorite sides on Thanksgiving Day?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Weekend Goodies.

We had a pretty low-key weekend, which was a nice change from last weekend and nice to relax before all of the hustle bustle of this coming week/weekend.
 
Friday night, I made the tuna bowls, which were so good! Then, we went and saw the movie Lincoln. It was quite long, but I enjoyed it. Never realized how likeable of a guy ol' Abe Lincoln was. :)
 
Saturday, Cameron had to work for a while so I met up with Emily at TJMaxx and scored some Essie nail polish - 2 for the price of 1! Thanks to Natalie for letting me know where they were stashed! I picked up Power Clutch and Case Study. After that, we went to The Roost to watch the Carolina / Wofford game. And for the Clemson / NC State game, we went to Kathryn's house. She made some delicious chicken chili and cornbread!
Power Clutch
Case Study
Sunday, my mom, grandma and I went to take a quick tour of our wedding venue since they haven't seen it in person yet. I felt so bad for the people having a wedding there yesterday because it was so nasty outside. When they came to my house to pick me up, my grandma surprised me with a quilt she made just for our guest bedroom! It couldn't be more perfect!

Now, I'm ready to tackle my 2.5 day work week and a 5 day weekend! :)


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Mark & Graham + A Special Holiday.

Almost every day, a catalog shows up in my mailbox. Most of them get skimmed through and end up in the trash recycling bin. But yesterday, a new catalog caught my eye. A company by the name of Mark & Graham.
After visiting their website, I realized that they were a sister site of Pottery Barn, West Elm and William Sonoma! No wonder I liked them! :)
 
Here are some of my favorite items that would be great to give or great to receive! 
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In other news, Happy National Pickle Day!!!
 
Let's celebrate by making/ordering some fried pickles!
 
These are the two types that are always in my fridge...


And these when I'm feelin' sassy..
 
Tell me, what are your favorite kind of pickles??

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tasty Tuesday: P Dub's Frito Chili Pie (With My Edits).

My dad makes the best chili I've ever tasted. But since I'm not as adventurous as he is (he's one of those cooks that just looks through the cupboard and thinks "hmmm a little of this, a little of that" and it turns out wonderfully), I wanted to post this recipe with my edits so I could remember exactly what I added/subtracted. Because it was GOOD. I can't wait to eat the leftovers for lunch.
 
Pioneer Woman's Frito Chili Pie
Recipe and photo found here.
 
2 pounds Ground Chuck
3 cloves Garlic, Minced (optional) I used b/c I love some garlic!
1 can (12 To 14 Ounce) Tomato Sauce
1 can (10 Ounce) Ro-tel (diced Tomatoes And Chilies)
1 can of diced tomatoes
½ teaspoons Salt
1 teaspoon Ground Oregano
1 Tablespoon Ground Cumin
2 Tablespoons Chili Powder (more To Taste) I only used 1 Tbsp
1 can (14-ounce) Kidney Beans, Drained And Rinsed
1 can (14-ounce) Pinto Beans, Drained And Rinsed
¼ cups Masa (corn Flour) Or Regular Corn Meal I omitted this b/c I didn't want it to thicken up.
½ cups Warm Water
Individual Bags Of Fritos
Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Diced Red Onion (Optional)
 
Brown ground chuck with garlic in a pot over medium-high heat. Add tomato sauce,  diced tomatoes, Rotel, salt, oregano, cumin, and chili powder. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes.
 
Add drained and rinsed beans. Stir to combine, then cover and simmer for another 20 minutes.
 
Mix masa with water, then add to the chili. Stir to combine and simmer for a final 10 to 15 minutes. Set aside.
 
Serve by slicing the Frito bags open lengthwise. Pile in chili and cheese, and diced onion if using. Serve immediately with plastic forks. A crowd-pleaser!
Or, you can do like me and buy Frito Scoops and just scoop up your chili! :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pretty Perfect Weekend.

This weekend had all of the key ingredients for the perfect weekend!
Dancing, friend time, football, boating, & family time.
Here's how it went down..

Friday night was supposed to be a low key night of just eating some Mexican food with Emily and David. On the way to the Mexican restaurant, I checked Facebook and saw that our wedding band was playing downtown that night! After a little convincing, we ate our food and were on our way downtown! Met up with some other friends who were already down there and had a blast!! Got me even more excited for our wedding!
Saturday we got off to a slow start thanks to Friday night. I went over to Emily's to take pics of her, her husband and their doggies so she could have a pic for their Christmas cards! I should definitely look into becoming a photographer...haha, not really. But it was fun! After that, I picked up lunch and headed back to the house where we lounged on the couch and watched the Gamecocks beat Arkansas! (Sorry, Hannah. :) ) We went to Cameron's parents house to watch the Clemson game and ate dinner over there, as well. I was asleep by 9pm on a Saturday night. Officially old. 
Sunday I made a trip to Trader Joe's (YUM), worked on invitations, and then went for a boat ride! It was SUCH a nice day yesterday! Looking at the pictures below, you might see a stripper shoe hanging from an outrigger. Don't worry, they were not on our boat. I'd like to hear that story though.
And after the boat ride, my parents came over for a few adult beverages since they were in the area. Always love hanging out with them. :)

Hope everyone has a great week!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Time To Think About Christmas Cards!

Want to save $50 on your Christmas cards this year AND get free shipping? 
Thanks to Megan from Mackey Madness, I did.  

Here's how:

-First, this must be your first purchase from Minted to work. So, to sign up for an account, click here and you will automatically be given a $25 credit. 

-Second, use the code HOL25SHIP through November 12th to receive $25 off and free shipping!

Voila!

I won't give away which design I chose until after I send them out, but here were some runner ups:
 
 
 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wedding Wednesday: The Wedding Row + Updated Checklist.

Yesterday after lunch I came back to my computer and checked Facebook, and to my surprise, I saw that Cameron and my engagement pictures were featured on The Wedding Row! I knew the pictures were going to be featured, I just didn't know when. So it was a lovely surprise! :)

Check it out here!

I got quite a few things checked off in the month of October. And now it's basically down to just the nitty gritty little details. I've started working on my invitations since they are going to be sent out in just two short months, and the planning of parties/showers have started! 


Set a date
Book venue
Book photographer
Book band
Ask bridal party to be in wedding
Book caterer & bar
Create wedding website
Register
Book florist
Shop for wedding dress
Book ceremony musician
Book rentals
Take engagement pictures
Select bridesmaid dresses
Bridesmaid dresses ordered
Select groom & groomsmen attire
Tuxedos ordered
Find veil
Book cake baker
Decide on cake flavors & designHire coordinator
Buy cake knife & server
Order save the dates
Send save the dates
Book officiant
Pre-marital counseling – Scheduled for January
Bachelorette Party
Bachelor Party
Buy guest book
Finalize guest list
Find a reasonably priced videographer - Found! Finalizing details.
Hotel room blocks
Engagement announcement in Post & Courier
MOB & MOG dress shopping
Find wedding shoes
Jewelry
Order garter
Book makeup artist & hair stylist
Menu tasting - Scheduled for December 7th
Take bridal portraits / hair & make up trial
1st dress fitting
2nd (final?) dress fitting
Make ceremony programs – JCB doing as a gift
Figure out where we want to do first look
Figure out where I'm getting ready & where Cameron is getting ready
Who will set up ceremony chairs?
Frame bridal portrait
Order invitations
Address invitations - In the process
Mail invitations - January
Book rehearsal dinner venue
Book RD caterer
Book RD rentals
Book RD music
Buy RD dress
Order pom poms for send off
Lounge furniture pillows
Order koozies
Bridesmaid gifts
Groomsmen gifts
Bachelorette party
Buy gifts for parents
Bridal shower
Purchase wedding bands
Create wedding day timeline
Put together picture list for photographer
DIY drink stirrers
DIY signs for River Rd and venue
DIY signs for reserved seating & seat yourself – Stephanie will do
DIY moss letters for bar
Get marriage license
Book transportation from reception to hotel
Book wedding night hotel room
Book honeymoon - Cameron taking care of and surprising me.
Apply for passports - Long story as to why this isn't checked off yet. Will try again in December.
RD invitations
RD groom's cake
Final vendor payments
Music selections to band and ceremony artist
Order thank you notes
Wedding announcement in Post & Courier
Walk down the aisle & say I do!


144 days left!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tasty Tuesday: Spicy Tuna Bowls.

I stumbled across a new blog last Friday and spent the majority of my work day reading each post. Her recipes and DIY projects sucked me in. This is a recipe I cannot wait to try and am planning on adding it to the dinner menu next week! Maybe for a Friday night dinner splurge. 


Spicy Tuna Bowl
Recipe and photo found here.

What you need (makes two bowls):
  • 1/2 pound sashimi grade ahi tuna (I buy mine from Trader Joes, it comes pre-packaged with about one pound of tuna- enough for 4 bowls)
  • 1 cup white rice (uncooked)
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced
  • 1 cup micro greens or sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup dried seaweed strips
  • tuna marinade & cucumber dressing
    • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
    • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
    • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
    • 2 tablespoons honey
    • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  •  spicy mayo dressing (4 parts mayo to 1 part Sriracha)
  1. Whisk together marinade ingredients, divide into two ziploc bags. Place sliced cucumber in one bag and mix. Place whole tuna meat in the other. Remove all air possible from bags and then place in fridge for 30 minutes while you prepare other ingredients
  2. Cook white rice per packaging instructions.
  3. Make spicy mayo sauce for tuna, set aside.
  4. After rice is cooked, remove tuna from fridge. Drain liquid from the bag and place tuna meat on paper towel. Pat dry to remove excess moisture. 
  5. Heat pan over high heat with 1 tablespoon canola oil. Sear both sides of tuna meat, about a minute and a half per side. Slice tuna into quarter inch slices against the grain.
  6. Assemble bowl contents saving the Panko flakes and spicy mayo dressing as garnish.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Finally a Fun Weekend!

I forgot what a fun-filled weekend felt like, but after this weekend, I remembered! It started off great when my event Friday night ended an hour early! I was home and in my pj's by 10:30pm and it was awesome. 

Saturday morning I went to a baby shower for Cameron's cousin's wife, Sylvia. I got her the cutest fish monogram pillow for Ryan's nursery. Found at PB Kids.
 Sylvia isn't wasn't due until December, but like clockwork after the shower, her water broke yesterday and Ryan, Jr. made his appearance!

After the shower I went home and cleaned, cleaned, cleaned the house before going to the fair since we were having people over that night. 

Emily, Caroline, Katie and I went to the fair and DEVOURED all of the fried fatty goodness. 
Seriously. Here is a list of everything we ate:
-Corn dog
-French fries with vinegar
-Fried cheese on a stick
-Fried pickles
-Fried mushrooms
-Red velvet funnel cake
-Pumpkin spice funnel cake
-Fried oreos


Then, we came back to my house, ate oysters and watched some football. What a perfect Saturday!



On Sunday, Cameron and I went to go visit our friends Alyssa, Chris and their baby, Owen, while they were in town visiting. 

The rest of the day/evening was spent working on invitations! Can't believe there's only 2 months left before I send them out!!

----------
This week's dinner menu..
 
Monday - Chicken quesadillas, corn/avocado/tomato salad
Tuesday - Pot roast over rice
Thursday - Pork chops, cucumber/mustard/dill salad, cinnamon apples (never made them last week)
Friday - Chili over fritos
Saturday -TBD

Friday, November 2, 2012

Friday Loves.

Happy Friday!!
I am so glad the weekend is just 8 hours away! Well, technically my weekend will start at 10:30pm tonight since I have an event, but I don't have an event tomorrow or Sunday which makes me VERY happy! 

Tomorrow morning I'm going to a baby shower for Cameron's cousin's wife then heading to the fair with my favorite group of girls!

Here are some of the things that have made me happy this week...
 
-These beauties (in taupe) are being delivered to me today. I hope I can pull them off!
source

-First fire of the Fall/Winter 2013 season! Not much is better than sitting by the fire with a glass of wine, snuggled up to your sweetie, watching tv (or reading a book - but that's not me).

-Beautiful sunsets on the way to work.

-Will Hoge being nominated for the Song of the Year Award on the CMA's for writing the song "Even if it Breaks Your Heart." He didn't win, but the fact that he was nominated is awesome!! Also just found out that Lady Antebellum is recording one of his songs and it may be on their next album! So exciting!!!

-This sweet picture of Marcus Lattimore. He seems to be in good spirits despite his injury and that makes me so happy for him! :)

What are yall getting into this weekend??