Thursday, June 30, 2011

Party On

If y'all don't know this about me already, I'm a planner. O calls me the master planner...I can't resist planning a good party. The details, the decorations, the drinks... And what really gets my guns blazin? A theme party!  

O and I have hosted parties at our place at least once a year for about 3 years. We've recently moved to an adorable little cottage and I'm trying to come up with the next theme. So lets take a look at the past shall we? And maybe the next big idea will come to me!

There was the first: The Holiday Cocktail party
The candy cane cocktail was born!

The White on White party: 
White clothes, white sangria? Hell of a good time!

The Ugly (more like heinous) Christmas Sweater Party:
Candy cane cocktail was still a hit, but a slight change in wardrobe made it enormously more fun!

And the Grandaddy of them all....

Ok, I'll admit we did not host our wedding at our house. It did require a master plan though! And I just wanted to post some wedding pictures....

I think a end of summer BBQ might be just the right speed. Let the brainstorming begin!

Happy planning!


Monday, June 13, 2011

Bubba Turns Five

Our dog baby turned five last Saturday and being the doting dog owners that we are, we celebrated at the pool with vodka and pink lemonade, hot dogs, and beer for the boys without Duke.... I justified this to myself by realizing that everyday we treat our Bubba Boo (fyi: this dog has about 29 different nicknames) like he's the best damn dog that ever roamed this earth. So without further ado, here are the the reasons we love our Dukenator:

You always find a way to sneak in a kiss

You are completely, 100% obsessed with balls

The first night we had the Boo!!

You smile for the camera

You put up with me torturing you every holiday

You're oh so curious about everything!

You always find time to snuggle

You choose the most inopportune places to sleep

if Duke could talk: "you are NOT leaving without me next time!!"

You play nice with wee ones

And finally, our lives would not be complete without you!


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Slumber Party and Pop Tarts

Like most little girls, when I was younger, I LIVED for slumber parties. The games, junk food, talking about boys... I vividly remember dancing around in my best friend's game room, clad in old navy pjs, braces, and frizzy hair to N'SYNC and gushing over JTT. So when I was invited to an old fashioned girls-only slumber party last night I was like hells yes! We had it all, pizza, games, music, and junk food, but instead of root beer and Capri Sun we had mojito champagne cocktails and mojito jello shots (I guess there is one perk to being a grown up!). Instead of N'SYNC we danced to Pitbull, and instead of boys we gushed over babies and weddings. 

The thing I looked forward to most at slumber parties was breakfast. My Mom was under the impression that Lucky Charms and Toaster Strudel had made a pact with the devil to poison little children with sugar. As far as I was concerned, getting to have a Pop Tart in the morning was like winning the ten year old lottery.  So when I stumbled upon this recipe on SK for homemade pop tarts I knew I had to try it out. 

Now, I'm no pastry chef (I've never even made pie crust before! Frozen roll out Pilsbury crust is usually my style), and this recipe is not easy, but with the guidance of Smitten Kitchen, even this pastry dough delinquent could get it right!* 

The ingredients are ready! I doubled the recipe and I would suggest this if you are not used to working with pastry dough. The whole measuring the inches of the dough and getting them exactly the right size was a little too involved for me, so I ended up with about 14 tarts when I should have had 18. And yes, there are four whole sticks of buttah in this recipe, that is why it's so delicious y'all.

My fillings. Both turned out excellent.

My food processor is still in it's new little box over at my MIL's house, so me and that dough got down the old fashioned way! 

If you live in a warm area, head SK's advice and put your dough in the freezer for 10 minutes before trying to work with it! I tried to roll it out immediately after kneading it and that was a definite no-go. 

I used a large cutting board to roll my dough because I Just.Can't.Place.Food.On.The.Countertop! It drives O crazy because we clean the counters, promise... but just, no. 

Sealing the edges and making the tarts pretty!

Little tarts about to enter the sauna!

Baked to light golden brown perfection! 
Word to the wise, if you make tarts with two different fillings, poke one four times and the other five with the fork in order to differentiate the fillings. Take it from me, I've had 3 tarts today and they've all been Nutella. Not that I'm complaining :)

They might not have been as perfect looking as SK's, but after a quick 20 seconds in the microwave and a sprinkling of powdered sugar, everyone at that slumber party said they tasted DAMN GOOD.

Happy tart making!


*Warning: My kitchen was COVERED in flour, Nutella, and more flour after this recipe, so if you have a problem with messy messes, just hop on over to the store and pick up whichever little foil wrapped pastries suit your fancy!