Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I was featured on Save the Date for Cupcakes!

My Blue and Green "Beachy" Dessert Table was featured on Save the Date for Cupcake's blog today! WHOO HOO! My first feature! I am so excited. Stop into Save the Date and check out all inspirational dessert table and party ideas.





Tuesday, August 17, 2010

MawMaw's Recipe Corner: Coconut Dream Pie

When I first met my husband, he would always rave about his "MawMaw's" cooking.  My husband's family come from West Virginia and MawMaw was known for her good ole' Southern cooking, especially her desserts!  The hubby would rave on and on about his grandmother's Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner.  Homemade this and that.  Makes me hungry just thinking about it.

By the time I met MawMaw, she was well into her late 80s and had stopped baking and cooking.  But my husband's aunts continued to make some of MawMaw's favorite dishes.

On my first visit to meet the family, my hubby's aunt had made MawMaw's Coconut Dream Pie.  When I opened the fridge and saw a big mound of yumminess topped with coconut, I was in heaven!  And when I took my first bite, I fell over.  DELICIOUS!  After I picked myself up from the floor, I made the hubby ask MawMaw for the recipe. 

When my husband was growing up and MawMaw used to make this pie for him, he thought it was MawMaw's very own special recipe!  When he asked MawMaw for the recipe that day, she said, "Look on the back of a Dream Whip box!"  We later learned that many of MawMaw's "special recipes" came from the paper or magazines or even pudding boxes!  Regardless, before we left that day, we had a small collection of MawMaw's recipes. 

I've only made a few of MawMaw's recipes, but I'd like to be able to start trying out the rest of the collection (which is sitting in a folder waiting to be organized).  So I thought I'd get the project started by featuring a few of MawMaw's recipes here on my blog.  My first "MawMaw's Recipe Corner" post will naturally be of MawMaw's famous Coconut Dream Pie.  When hubby and I make one of MawMaw's dishes, it always brings some very special memories back for him.  I guess that's why he loved eating her food so much.  In the end, we realized that MawMaw did add her very own secret ingredient in all her dishes... love.

So here it is, MawMaw's Coconut Dream Pie:
(wish I had a better picture of this, but trust me, it's YUMMO! )


MAWMAW'S COCONUT DREAM PIE

Ingredients
2 env. Dream Whip whipped topping mix
2 3/4 c. cold milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 (4 oz.) pkgs. instant pudding mix, vanilla
1 baked 9" pie shell, cooled or 1 graham cracker or chocolate crust
1 small tub of Cool Whip
2 cups shredded coconut

Directions
1) Beat Dream Whip mix with 1 cup of milk and vanilla in large bowl with mixer on high for about 6 minutes until thick and forms peaks.
Warning:  Don't overbeat.  It will change the consistency of the mixture.

2)  Add remaining milk and the pudding mix; blend on low. Beat on high for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.

3)  Spoon into pie shell

4)  Top Cool Whip over pudding mixture.  Sprinkle with coconut.

5)  Chill at least 4 hours.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Surprise Bridal Shower - Part 3: The Panty Poem

Last post from Yung's Bridal Shower.  Yung and Brad live in a small apartment with not much storage areas, so they opted not to register.  They pretty much have everything they need "household" wise anyway.  And because Yung LOVES lingerie, we decided to go with lingerie/panty themed gifts.  Jessica Weiss wrote a bridal shower panty poem for her best friend's shower that prepared the bride with a pair of panty for certain marriage milestones.  I found the poem here and decided to have each guests read a verse from the poem before presenting their corresponding "panty" gift.  It was so much fun for both guests and bride to be!

Here is the poem with the corresponding "panty":
We friends have a secret to share
About our little bride
She is obsessed with underwear
And that we cannot hide.

So for out little panty queen
We'll make her feel just fine
By working as a friendly team
To form a panty line.

Yung, these undies are to last you
All throughout your life
And Brad will be pleased to say
He has a sexy wife!

So listen up to hear about
Your lifelong panty plan
These underwear, we have no doubt
Will last your whole life span.

The first are for your wedding day
Of coure they are pure white
We know Brad will shout, "Hooray!"
When he sees you on that night.

(Bridal Whites)

The next are for your honeymoon
They're sexy and all lace
We hope you'll leave your hotel room
'Cause the Dominican's a gorgeous place!

(Sexy Lace)

On Valentine's you'll wear this pair
Before you hit the bed
Cuz Cupid's arrow in the air
Shoots tushies that are red

(Red for V-Day)

After a year has passed you'll face
Anniversary number one
With these you'll surely have a blast
'Cuz leopard's so much fun!

(Leopard print)

Then when the time is right for you
And don't be saying, "Maybe"
You'll wear your little pink or blue
In honor of your baby

(Pink for a girl and Blue for a boy)


And when your years of wedding bliss

Become the big 2-5
Don't worry - you'll just slip this on
To keep the sparks alive

(Silver sexy full cut)

When finally you're old and gray
With these you can't go wrong
'Cuz sorry Yung but at that age
You just can't wear a thong

(Granny panties)

I loved how each guest had their own interpretation of the "panty" for their assigned verse.  I think Yung is set in the underwear department!  Give this fun game a try at your next shower!

Surprise Bridal Shower - Part 2: The Food Table

Wanted to share with you some more photos of Yung's Bridal Shower.  As you can tell, alot of my planning went into planning and designing The Dessert Table.  To keep me from literally pulling my hair out from stress, I decided to keep everything else low key.  So that I wasn't spending even more time in the kitchen, I made the shower a potluck.  The guests really came thru and had some delicious and wonderful dishes to share.

I had a table cloth I had bought from Ikea two summer ago just sitting in storage waiting to be used.  I finally had the opportunity to break it out.

I made these "Martha Stewart" inspired poms from this tutorial.  I made them in two different sizes.  Smaller greens ones for the dessert table and larger blue and green ones for the food table.  Here's a tip, buy the tissue paper from Walmart.  They have a good selection of colors and they're only $1 or $2 per pack (depending on the color).  Much cheaper then Michaels and better colors then what the Dollar Store had to offer. I wish I could have hung the poms from the ceiling, but they were really HIGH and I didn't feel like falling that day!  I got the blue paper lanterns at Micheals in the summer clearance section for .49 cents each.  Can't beat that!

My sister found these adorable sea shell place card holders on clearance at Michaels as well.  They were perfect for the food labels and fit with the "beach" theme.  Oh and do you spy the blue buckets I reused from Taylor's 2nd birthday and Easter party?  And those blue bowls in the pic above were also from Little Muon's 2nd birthday.  I love being able to reuse supplies from other parties!

One last shot of The Food Table. 




































Thanks again ladies for all the yummy dishes you brought to share!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Surprise Bridal Shower - Part 1: The Dessert Table

My long time childhood friend, Yung, is getting married next week!  I'm super excited for her and am so happy she has finally found her "happily ever after" with a wonderful guy.  In celebration of the big day, my sister and I threw Yung a surprise bridal shower!  Yung is practically a sister to Trang and I and has always been there for us and this was our opportunity to finally thank her for being such a fantastic friend.

Since Yung is getting married on the beautiful beaches of the Dominican Republic, I went with a "beachy" theme.  And if you've been a follower of my blog, you know that I really like to focus on color rather then making obvious, over the top statements with the decor.  So my colors were green and blue with touches of "beach". 

When I started planning Taylor's 1st birthday, I discovered the blog world.  I found some fantastic party blogs and have gotten my ideas and inspiration from this community of creative bloggers.  The latest craze in the party blog world right now is the "dessert tables"; the most famous of them all being Amy Atlas.  She is absolutely amazing and so creative!  Yung's bridal shower gave me the opportunity to FINALLY do my own dessert table.  So I set out to make a chocolate dessert table, inspired by the blue and green colors. 

I was so happy with the way it turned out.  And I think Yung was too.  So many thanks to my sister for her graphic design talents and helping me with the planning and cooking.  We had many late nights, but it was so worth it! 

Here are some pictures... taken by none other then Trang Dam Photography.

Trang designed the sign and goodie bags.

We made caramel candy pretzel sticks and chocolate dipped pretzels. 




































Oreo Dipped Chocolates...mmmmm.  Exactly like the Oreo Lollipops I made for Taylor's birthday, minus the lolli!




































By the way, I had been eyeing a square cakestand like FOREVER.  But only could find them online and super expensive!  I went to one of my all time fav store, HomeGoods, and found this one for $12.99!  Can't beat that!  I added the green ribbon for a touch of green!

Chocolate seashells...

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries...




































Trang and I found that awesome P A R T Y platter at a consignment shop on one of our shopping excursions.  I fell in LOVE with it when I saw it!  We filled the letters with Hershey Kisses.

Can you believe that table cloth came from Goodwill... new in packaging!  I also scattered some blue and green glass marbles (from the Dollar Store) on the table as well as sea shells from my own collection.  These small touches really brought the table together.

Finally, the delicious cake...  Giant Food better cream!  How cute is this cake!

Along with the goodie bags, guests took home these adorable flip flop luggage tags.  These came in handy for those that were going with the happy couple to the Dominican.

To go over the dessert table, I made a "Sweet Love" bunting out of scrapbook paper.  I made a circular version of this for Taylor's 2nd birthday.

Yung, I hope you had a great time.  Congratulations and much love to you and Brad.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Taylor's 2nd Birthday - Part 4: Thank You Cards

One more post about Taylor's 2nd Birthday.  Finally getting around to sending out thank you cards.  My talented sister designed the thank you cards.  These will be going out to all the wonderful family and friends who helped us celebrate out baby becoming a toddler!

Love that it follows our Nemo theme!  See the invitation here.



Check out Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of Taylor's 2nd Birthday.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

100 Things to Do for Great Summer Photos

Wow!  It's August already and summer is almost over.  The older I get, the faster time seems to go by.  What have you done this summer? 

Kelly Willette from willettedesigns.com has a fantastic freebie:  a list of 100 things to do for great summer photos.  The premise is simple:  spend your summer with your kiddos (or for those who don't have any, your friends) doing some of these fun activities AND a camera.  These activities are great ways to spend a lazy summer day and the opportunity to capture memorable summer photos. 

Here are some of my favorites from her list:
1)  Go to the beach.
2)  Build a sand castle.
3)  Visit a local museum.
4)  Have a sleepover.
5)  Make home-made ice cream. 
6)  Blow bubbles.
7)  Press summer flowers.
8)  Play outside in the rain (or sprinkler and hose).
9)  Create a nature journal of what you find in your yard.
10)  Write a letter to a soldier overseas.
11)  Make banana splits.
12)  Have a water balloon fight.
13)  Watch all your old family movies on a rainy day.
14)  Create a scavenger hunt.
15)  Tie dye t-shirts!

Here are some of the things we've done so far this summer:

Turned TWO years old!


Went to the beach:


Blew and caught bubbles:


Blew out candles, just for the pure enjoyment, on Uncle Dave's birthday, mommy's birthday and Grandma's birthday!


Had a family picnic at the park:


Got some fishies!


Got a "big" girl bed:


Went to the pool... ALOT!


Made music with all of mommy's metal bowls:


Had a GI procedure done (what a sad day):


As well as laughed, sang, and danced alot!  Check out Kelly's site and grab your list of 100 things to do and finish off your summer with some great photos!
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