The 4th of July is a day for barbeques with family and friends. It’s the second holiday of the summer season. Many people take advantage of the three day weekend and venture off to the lake or ocean or wherever their heart pulls. This year, I did not participate in a family barbecue. We did not take a weekend getaway. I actually spent most of the weekend studying for a Sunday morning exam that was required for my new position.
We did however, take part in one of my favorite traditions of America’s birthday…fireworks! Plans were not officially made until that evening. Nick and I decided that we actually had enough time to make it down to the Capital for the big fireworks show. We made our way right into the main event. Though it was crowded, the weather held out.; no rain and limited humidity. Even though we didn’t take the nice DSLRs with us, we took a few photos on our phones. Hope you all had a nice 4th as well (she says, 3 weeks later)!
In years past, my family has always gone out for Easter Brunch. Each year it’s hard to say who will be able to make it home for the holiday weekend so it just always seemed easier to dine out. This year however my mom thought it would be nice for me to host. You know, since I did such a good job with Thanksgiving and Christmas…I guess.
I knew for the table I wanted to use the traditional pastel Easter colors. My aunt Shelagh had given me a full set of white dishes to be used for various special occasions. This was a perfect opportunity to break them out. With yellow table clothes and tapers, white serving dishes, and colorful tulips I think I came up with a simple, yet elegant table setting. (more…)
St. Patrick’s Day is a pretty big holiday in New York’s capital, specifically Parade Day. You may remember my post covering the days’ events last year when my very own Mom was the Grand Marshall. This year was very similar to last without a few later evening events. Dianna’s family hosted a pre-parade boozy brunch at their house. We had everything from bagels and doughnuts to french toast and cheesy egg casserole (and of course a few pitchers of mimosas).
I then proceeded downtown to meet up with Sabrina and her family, per tradition. This year I was not participating in the parade so I was able to hang out before hand. It was a good thing too because the weather turned out to be pretty crappy. I then headed to the Irish bar downtown to try and venture through the crowds and reach another group of friends. It was interesting to say the least.
It was a low key Parade Day compared to years’ past but still fun none the less. However, I don’t think I took one picture throughout the days activities. Luckily, I can always count on Sabrina to snap our traditional shot. So this week’s photo was taken by Sabrina (well actually her boo with her phone). Thanks Adam!
This New Year’s Eve Nick and I hosted our second annual New Year’s Eve party. I am pretty confident in saying that it was just as successful as last year. We invited the normal crew with a few additions. To keep things simple, we had everyone bring a snack and drink to share. Champagne was provided by yours truly for the midnight toast.
One thing I added this year was a DIY Photo Booth. You see them at weddings all of the time now in different styles and formations. The most recent wedding we attended though I realized it could be very simple to create at home; especially given the fact that Nick has some killer camera gear. So here is what I did:
I decided to host a Christmas Cookie Exchange again this year. Last years party was a hit. Plus I really can not think of anything better than spending time with some of my closest friends while eating a ton of cookies. (more…)
I volunteered to host Thanksgiving dinner again this year. Last year went fairly smoothly and it takes the stress off of my mom. To make things easier, I took my own advice by preparing ahead of time. I planned my menu, Mom and I did the grocery shopping the weekend before, and I was able to prepare a few of the dishes at least partially a few days in advance.
Since my parents purchased their camp up in the Adirondack’s, there have been very few weekends Dad has not spent up there relaxing. He loves the peacefulness and fresh air the Adirondack’s are known for. With that being said, we could not think of a better way to spend Father’s Day than up North with the family.
We started with a game of golf at a small course about twenty minutes from camp. Though I personally ended with one of the worst rounds since my first swing, we still have a good time.
Today we celebrate the most special woman in our lives. The person who brought us into the world, our Moms. It is a day to give back for the hundreds of other days that they have given to us. It is a day to remind them just how grateful we are for everything they have done for us and will continue to do throughout our lives.
Today my darling twin sisters turn 23 years old! It is crazy to think how fast time has gone. High school and college have both come and gone with the blink of an eye. Now they are both beautiful, professional young woman taking on the world by force. I wish them both a fabulous birthday. I know they are going to have a wonderful time together this weekend celebrating. Love you both!
Happy Birthday Loves!
Ghost and goblins and witches…oh my! It’s that time of year again! I love this holiday. It is an excuse to dress up and eat lots of candy. What more could a girl want? This year is extra exciting for me. Being that it is our first year in the new house, I am very excited to be handing out candy to all of the trick-or-treaters in our neighborhood. Since we were on vacation this past week, I did not have a lot of time to prepare. Therefore, pretty much all of my decorations, baking, and pumpkin carving occurred last night. And of course, I documented the activities.
First up, we carved the pumpkin! Nick helped a little by cutting the top off for me. He isn’t one to stick his hand in the pumpkin guts and scoop out all of the insides. He left the messy part to me. I was debating about getting fancy with my carving but quickly realized I am not much of an artist. I decided to just stick with the traditional pumpkin face. I mean, it did not come out half bad for being an amateur carver.
Next up came the baking. I decided that I wanted to bring in some sweet treats to the office and also to have them for later that evening at home. I stuck with what I know best. Funfetti cupcakes with orange buttercream frosting. I found these really cute cupcake liners and decorations at Target. The cupcakes were quick and easy, and actually came out really cute!
Lastly, I saved some of the pumpkin seeds and roasted them. Nick and his brother Matt really enjoy them so I figured it would be a good snack for us to enjoy while we are passing candy out to the kiddies. The recipe for the pumpkin seeds is below.
Roasted Chipotle Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds (as little or as many as you’d like!)
Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Wash of the seeds to rid of all of the pumpkin innards.
Spread the seeds evenly out on a baking sheet.
Drizzle lightly with extra virgin olive oil.
Sprinkle on a pinch of salt and a dusting of the chipotle seasoning.
Mix the seeds, oil, and seasoning together with your hands to be sure all of the seeds are coated.
Roast in the oven for 45 minutes.