Monday, May 31, 2010

Birthday Bash

Today is my sweetheart's birthday! How great is it to have your birthday fall on a holiday? No need to ask for the day off!

Happy Birthday to the man I am blessed to call mine - the one who loves me, cares for me and makes me laugh till my side hurts!  You are such a joy to be married to I love you!

Several weeks ago, I decided that it would be fun to have a get together with friends and family to celebrate him. Last year we hosted a hot dog roast for a friend's birthday party and it was a great hit. So I thought that it would be fun to kick off Memorial Day weekend, Birthday weekend and summer with a hot dog roasting, wii bowling, cake eating, outdoor shindig. And even though the weather forcast turned from icky to nasty, I really thought that the rain would cooperate and give us dry afternoon.

All bundled up to eat on the back porch.

Silly me, what was I thinking? By Thursday evening it was clear that the rain definatly was not going to let up. We needed a covered area to bar-b-q and a house big enough to entertain 25 people indoors. So we decided last minute to change the party to my parents home - emails, text messages, and phone calls went out the night before the party and fortunatly everyone got the message. Whew! It would have been awful to have someone drive all the way to our home and find an empty house.

So even though all the plans had been made for our home and an outdoor setting, I quickly readjusted the menu and decorations to fit our new party central.

Nothing worked as I had origionaly planned it two weeks ago....And everything was wonderful.

Everyone brought a dish to share and it was quite a feast!

A dear friend brought two homemade cakes:

German Chocolate

and Orange Lemon. Yum!

The guys played pool and the gals played a fancy dance version of twister. We all laughed till we cried, talked late into the day, and started off the weekend with a fantastic time of fellowship.

It just goes to show that our perfect plans are not always the right plans for a get together. Sometimes it has to be readjusted and tweaked to fit unusual circumstances. But we can either go with the flow or get upset that that our plan was foiled.

I think I'll go with option one -
go with the flow.
No need to cry over spilled milk...
just pour yourself another glass.

Do you also find it hard to let go of perfect plans?
Are you having to learn to go with the flow?

All photos taken by yours truly.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Awarding Awards

Right now, life has been overtaken with work. And although the things that are going on are all wonderful, they are time consuming and energy draining. Kind of like comming off a runners high.

So you can imagine how exciting and encouraging it was to find out that I have been awarded two awards from two LOVELY ladies! YA-HOOOO!!!

First off, the darling Kerstin from Mommy Time Crafts has awarded me the Trendy Blog Award! Woo hoo! This is so special coming from a talented {and beautiful} person like Kerstin. For real, have you seen the Lion outfit her kiddo is in? {see her profile pic} If I am not mistaken, I believe she made that. Hello cuteness!!!!! Thank you so much for the award,  Kerstin :)

The second award is from sweet Heather from Storing Up My Treasures. She awarded me the Versatile blogger award! For reals?!?! yippie! Heather has such wonderful posts about her family {her kids are darling!}, and she is crafty like none other! Heather, you have blessed my heart with this award :)

Part of this award is to tell you 7 little known facts about me. So here we go... And please don't abandon my blog after seeing how silly, kooky and goofy I am....

1. I am a total night owl. If I ever see a sunrise, it's because I have stayed up all night.

2. Although I love gardening, I have one of the blackest thumbs you have ever seen in the garden. So far, the plant casualties this year alone are as follows: 4 strawberry plants {watered with white vinegar spray bottle instead of the water bottle}, a gorgeous purple pansy {who knew you could over water a plant?!?}, and 24 tomato seedlings {I missed one morning of watering... only 1, and they kicked the bucket.} Nevertheless, I still keep trying to garden. Wish me luck... or better yet, wish the plants luck :)

3. I am addicted to using lamps in my home. From my seat in the living room I can see 6.... and there are many more scattered throughout the house. I love the warm glow of lamps instead of all overhead lighting... how about you? Lamp or overhead lights?

4. This happened to me yesterday at the store: I got a magazine while in line at winco, walked back to the cart, and it WAS NOT MY HUBBY! I totally walked up to someone else and called him honey. And he looked panicked. his wife giggled, my hubby laughed hysterically and I fumbled around trying to get back to our cart. definatly top 10 embarrasing grocery store moments :) haha!

5. I have the most hysterical hubby ever! This is a typical conversation at our home:
Me: If we put one word on that wall that described our home, what would it be?

Hubby:{in his "serious and sincere" voice}"Hungry"
Me: {laughing hysterically}
Hubby:That way you can remember to eat durring the day, and that way I would be reminded that I live in a perpetual state of hunger! {haha! I really do feed him...}

6. I love quotes and sayings. One of my favorites right now is, "Worrying does not empty tomorrow of it's troubles... it empties today of it's strength." Love that!

7. When I'm holding a can of spray paint in my little paws, nothing is safe. Hubby and pup know to get out of the way when this madwoman is painting, or else they too might get a new coat of Heirloom White.

So there you have it. A sneak peak into the silly, crazy life here at the "too Blessed to Stress" nest.

I am thrilled to pass the Trendy Blogger award onto All Thingz Related. One word for you about their blog: L.O.V.E. That's it. They are so creative and can weild a power tool like none other.

And the Versatile Blogger award goes to one of my newest found bloggy loves Shelley from House of Smiths. How did I not know about you sooner? Totally cute, crafty and loves vinyl quotes/words as much as I do.

Congrats, hope you enjoy the award!And feel free to pass it on if you like.

And thanks again for the awards! You totally made my day, girlies! Thank you so much :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Weeds vs. Gardener

It was an epic battle. One for the history books.

A husband and wife.
One badly overgrown garden.
A pup in neep of an approved place to dig.
Weeds that would not give up without a fight.

Spanish Lavender.

After the first few pulls, I felt tempted to adopt this mantra:

"A weed is only a misplaced plant"

And just call it good!

Sterling Silver rose ready to bloom.

But we pushed through, worked till sundown and by the end of the evening we were sitting all snuggled up with the pup here:

Enjoying our newly weeded and planted garden.

Ahhh this is the good life :)

I'll be gone from bloggy land for the weekend, but here is a sneak peak of what's coming next week....

~ Redecorating in the main living area - using what we have!

~ More of Tour de Garden - Remember this post about our desires to revamp the backyard? We're well on our way to a weed free, self-landscaped beauty! Exciting {and slow} process :)

~ Radio givaway frames. Thank to everyone for their suggestions for what to include on the giveaway frames! {see here} I'll be showing you the four frames I made to give away on our radio program.

Frames that were transformed for music corner... which looks wonderful!

~ The office reveal - finally got around to getting decent photos! Oh so excited to show you all :)

What will you be doing this weekend?
Will you be crafting? Trying a new recipe?
Spending time with the family? Enjoying your garden?
I'd love to know - share in the comments below!

All photos taken by yours truly.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Blue on Blue

Have you ever heard of blue hour? I found out about it recently, completely by accident. {I was looking for patio decorations, go figure!} The photos were stunning! And I couldn't wait to try my hand at some blue hour pics.

Evening shot with flash - makes the background black.

No flash, blue hour, you can see the detail behindthe table.

Blue hour is the hour when the sky turns a deep blue and it is the best time to take night portraits.

Ten minutes before blue hour.

Just as blue hour started.

Fifteen minutes into blue hour

Twenty minutes into blue hour.

Hubby and I tried out few pics durring blue hour. And although the memory card ran out before optimal blue hour time was reached, we did get some great shots.

Before blue hour.

Beginning of the hour.



I can't wait to try some more out this week... with a tripod... because as you will see, some pics are blurry... I couldn't help it... hubby made me laugh!

Just before.

Beginning of the hour.

Fifteen minutes into the hour.

Mid hour.

By the way, all of these photos were taken with our little point and shoot camera. It has great resolution and color, but no fancy lens. So you see, all you need for a great photo is a decent camera and some patience.... and a hubby who will make you laugh doesn't hurt either :)

Read about blue hour here, and here find out when your blue hour is, and get your camera charged and ready to take some awesome pics.

Have you taken any outdoor photos this year?
Were any durring blue hour?

All photos taken by yours truly.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Come on in ... we've got pie!

My oh my the lemon pie from last night was delicious!

I have been longing for lemon bars, lemon meringue pie, lemon cookies lemon-something for the longest time now! But the urge always hits at the most inconvenient time... like ten minutes before dinner was to be served or the middle of the night. {and no, I am not pregnant... I just really love lemon anything.}

The little dots are lemon zest... not lumps of flour... just saying :)

So I got my act together yesterday and decided to make my mom's yummy lemon meringue pie. Only problem - it required a microwave and we currently do not have one. {I know, crazy huh?} So I googled lemon pie and decided that what I really wanted was something that tasted like creamy lemon curd, like the kind you eat with scones.

 And that's when I found this recipe at Allrecipes: Sour Cream Lemon Pie.

 I followed the instructions {even though I have a tendency to expirement, I didn't this time}, used my grandmother's no-fail pie crust recipe {unless you really mess it up... then it fails. Read on...}, and it was wonderful. Go on over to Allrecipes and print it out.... you know you want to.... I'll wait.

{Humming Jeopardy Song}

Ok, moving onto the disasters that I hinted at yesterday here.

Because as wonderful as the evening was, there were a few mishaps along the way. It was a great lesson in not-freaking-out-twenty-minutes-before-hubby-gets-home.

First off, I tripled the salt in my grandmother's simple yet heavenly pie dough recipe. You heard right... TRIPLED! Instead of 1/2 teaspoon, I put in 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. In other recipes,that would not make a huge difference. But in a pie dough.... wowie! It was salty. And I realized it as I rolled it out. So there were two options:

~ freak out, make another dough and not get the rest of dinner in the oven, and end up eating hours late. Or...
~ hope that some of the salt would be masked by the sweet lemon curd; and if not, I would just announce my mistake and scoop the curd out.

I chose the second option. I actually forgot about the salt incident... and it was not that bad... till the fourth bite. Then it got real salty, and we ended up eating the lemon alone. It was still delicious!

The second misstep of the evening came after baking the crust. It looked lovely with the fancy twisty border I gave it {thank you 1950's Betty Crocker cookbook!} But I had completely underestimated the time it would take for a crust to cool. It took forever! And by the time the lemon curd was almost ready to pour in, the crust was still steaming. What to do?!?!

Balance it on a pie rack, on two mugs over a tray of ice cubes! Easy Peasy! And it sure did the trick :)

And finally my last mishap of the evening, by far the worst.... I lost half an eyebrow. No exaggeration. And not the end half... the MIDDLE half! It looks like two tiny eyebrows on one side - oh the horror! Although I would love to blame this Brow Blunder on a candle flame, it was all my fault.

You see I can't pluck or wax my brows to shape them like most gals. My skin is way too sensitive. It swells, bleeds and makes me look all goobery for days. So I have to shape them with a tiny electric razor made for brows. Do you see where I'm going with this? As I'm holding the razor, all finished, something caught my eye, spooked me, I lost my grip on the razor and on the way down it took half a brow with it! And no, I will not post photos... after all, Google is forever!

But after a slight panic, some eyeliner and smudger, all was back to {somewhat} normal and I was back in the kitchen busily putting the finishing touches on our dinner.

Either hubby has still not noticed...or he feels bad and doesn't want to say anything... I think he hasn't noticed... cause if he had, he would be rolling on the floor laughing!

What mishaps have you survived
moments before serving a fancy dinner?

All photos taken by yours truly.