Saturday, July 31, 2010

New Haircut

I've been wanting a short 'do for a long time
awhile back I finally took the plunge & cut off all my hair!
I've learned how to style it too so my new haircut has made my daily life easier.
Let's face it, I'm up at 4:20 AM and must leave by 5:20 AM
so easier is mandatory *smiles*

No more french braiding!
No more ponytails!
No more worries about putting my hair up for work!
Best of all - No more NON style!
I have a style now *smiles*

So what do you think? Do you like it?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Birthday Cake!

Do you bake your own birthday cakes?
I do!
Or sometimes the Hubs will buy a ice cream cake cause they love those
but I love white cake with white buttercream - always have!
So this year Hubs said "I want to help!"
So we baked my birthday cake together *smiles*

I've been wanting to try a ruffled cake!
It was easy peasy!
Use your rose tip & go back & forth all the way up in a narrow swatch then do that over and over and over again till you're all the way around your cake. Pipe a border on top to cover the edge and you've got a pretty, sweet, feminine, girly cake!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

$10 Pedestal

You know how Hobby Lobby sells those faux wood pedestals for about $100? I've always wanted one but there was no way I'd ever spend that much on one, not even with a coupon or sale price so I waited patiently... Remember I worked for Hobby Lobby while waiting for my dream job to be built. My patience was rewarded after 2 1/2 years!

All the furniture items that Hobby Lobby sells comes in boxes which the employees put together. Now some people just naturally have skills at putting together things whereas others do not and whomever had attempted to put together this particular pedestal ending up stripping out the screw parts in the particle board type stuff it was made out of so no amount twisting it was going to hold it together. At this point most store managers would say toss it down the dumpster but fortune smiled on me as I had a repuation for wanting anything broken beyond repair and it was offered to me for $10!!! Naturally I knew my ober skilled hubs could fix it *smiles*

Both ends of this pedestal needed repair and hubs used lots of wood glue and clamps to hold it together while it dried and set up. I waiting patiently...

Here it is looking all pretty and sturdy!

Not bad for $10 huh?

Gosh I miss Hobby Lobby!

Now if only I could get a new Ikea couch for $10...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

a quick Charleston lunch

Much earlier this year I had the chance to go to another food show in Charleston SC. Now I've mentioned several times before how much my husband and I love Charleston, it's simply our favorite place ever so a quick mid-week expenses paid trip to our favorite place is a no-brainer, absolutely ! We are there! So this is us on our way.
After lots of food show stuff on the first day and a huge customer appreciation party that evening we decided to spend our second day going downtown and having a quick bite of lunch before making the return trip home. The day was sunny and clear with a cool breeze, perfect weather! I wish we could have explored more but since we both had to work the next day we enjoyed this little slice of Charleston till our next visit.
If you've been to Charleston then you can imagine how rare it would be to have a picture of this particular location without another person or vehicle in sight! Charleston mid-week is a slightly different city from Charleston weekends.
One of our favorite local casual places to eat is the Noisy Oyster. Their food is always yummy, excellent service and reasonably priced menu.

Forgive my awful photo! But this is one of my absolute Charleston favorites, She-crab soup! See the melting butter pool? Yum!

And another Charleston lunch favorite of mine is the Shrimp Po'boy sandwich with cheesey grits and red rice!

I have to visit Charleston several times a year or else I feel displaced and disquieted. Charleston calls to me, I can't explain it but I just know I have to be there. I feel a harmony within when I visit and wish I could live there all year round never leaving.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

A Summer Evening Party!

Recently I prepared a little selection of nibbles for an investors meeting.
I had a great time coming up with my menu!
Mini Blue Crab Cakes with Remoulade Sauce
Black Bean Hummus with Whole Wheat Pita Chips
Antipasto Skewers with Pickled Okra
Firefly Sweet Tea Peach Soup Shooters
Mini Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Dark Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
Lightly Sweetened Iced Tea

The strawberries were the favorite of the evening, everyone commented on how huge they were!
The anipasto skewers were drizzled with a Balsamic Vinegrette and had mushroom caps, roasted red peppers, fresh mozzarella, dried apricot, kalamata olive and sundried tomato with basil - YUM
I used the Magnolia Bakery in NYC recipe for the Red Velvet Cupcakes - they were oh so easy to pop into your mouth!
I also put out a bottle of Toscani Caramel Syrup for those who enjoy flavored coffee

Sorry I didn't get a picture of the Chilled Peach Soup Shooters, I just put the shooter glasses into a large rectangle dish with crushed iced water and drizzled each shooter with a honey yogurt swirl, they truly were unique, pretty and oh so trendy!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

a photo-less post and a lot of anxiety

After sharing in my so very long ago last post about the loss of a special friendship I've had some anxiety about continuing blogging. I don't know why... I think in my case the reasons for anxiety doesn't make sense after all I've been shown nothing but kindness and loving support from blogging friends and their comments but yet it's there physically manifesting as weird expectant feelings of impending doom in the pit of my stomach along with a racing heart as I comtemplate posting an update... *smiles*

So what have I been doing?

A whole lot of work for one thing, my job has taken off and grown steadily but just last week it's exploded as a local competitor sold out and all their little friends were frantically searching for a new place *smiles* We bought a car just after the first of the year so I'm no longer sharing my 3 hour round trip commute with my dear hubs in his vintage '86 Ford Ranger pickup but I now have bi-weekly car payments which drastically cut into my discretionary spending money. Our son is about to graduate college and is looking for employment while I daydream about having an empty nest *smiles* My dear husband and I are in the early months of a major life style change as we reject the word diet because diets have never gotten us anywhere and we are losing weight and feeling great eating cleaner, healthier and more wholesome foods. I've suffered from some unbearable foot pain and will start seeing a massage therapist soon for treatment. Hmmm, what else? Went to Charleston SC to celebrate our 24th wedding anniversary in March only to come down with a wicked case of Noro-virus which pretty much ruined our visit. I managed to walk around the city I adore for a bit on our last day, otherwise I was too weak to get out of the car for the other days. That's about it friends, nothing major, just regular day to day living going on with a grateful heart for the blessings we enjoy in our lives.

I've been keeping with you guys on google reader though even if I don't comment. I've turned into a major lurker *smiles* I've been watching... lol I'm so proud of you guys for all your creative endeavors! Miz Darlene I'd love to know if your chicken spaghetti is a hit because I have an even simpler version of this dish that I serve at school which everyone loves and I'd be happy to share it with you. And Miz Susie I'd love to know how your daughter's allergies are coming along... what on earth do you feed that child since she is so limited? I have little friends with allergies too and I'm very curious how you and your sweet girl handle it.

OK anxiety is slipping away and I'm starting to feel better...

maybe I'll even get around to posting a little more often with some photos... I'm working on a Jane Austen inspired altered canvas tote bag that has cost me ZERO dollars in the making *smiles*

And Thank you friends for your sweet comments while I've fallen off the face of blogland!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Weighing on my heart

During a trip late last summer to my favorite town resulted in a loss of a friendship of many years standing. I've been on a journey of intense self discovery since, rethinking my own personal definition of friendship and what value it holds in my life. Asking myself if I am the toxic friend, the friendenemy. My attempts to repair this friendship have fallen upon deaf ears. Chances are it's truly over. I never once thought this was all her fault, this misunderstanding. But it's not all my fault either although I willing took the responsibility of apology upon my own shoulders. I'm not convinced I handled it in the proper format but I tried. I tried as much as I'm capable of trying. Let me explain this. It's hard to put yourself out there when you fear failure or rejection. No one enjoys having their feelings hurt or stomped on. While my apologies and attempts were genuine and sincere I did not give in to her demands of a post mortem rehashing of said events. I felt it would not serve either of us well. So instead I apologized, I apologized with contrition, I apologized with love and remembrance of years of friendship and finally I apologized the last time with an economy of words and simplicity, the final plea of can't we just be friends again? Only this weekend I asked her will we ever speak again? and yet she is unmoved.

I somehow thought once we got through the apology stage then we could move on to the why did this happen stage and we both could then acknowledge our own parts in it , we'd somehow be friends again. I thought by offering my apologizes and an willingness to accept the majority of the blame that it would create an safe haven of forgiveness where our friendship could survive while we worked thru our differences. I was wrong. This is not what happened. My apologies have been rejected. It seems I'm not worth having for a friend after all these years.

This hurts. Have you ever been the last one chosen for a team? Have you ever been rejected and found lacking? Have you ever looked around and thought is it me?

I can tell you it's much easier to lose new friends, easier on your heart than to lose an old friend. While new friendships can be destroyed easier than old ones, when the old ones are lost they cut deeper and leave a bigger hole in your heart. The new ones don't have such a hold on your heart like the old ones do. It's much easier to let the new friends go, to move on, to say it's not me, it's them... but the old ones? Oh let me tell you, it's hard to hide from the truth.

So after yet another rejection of my attempts to open a dialogue between us I've about come to the conclusion that my wise friend Miss Barbara was right in her advice, all that I can really do at this juncture is to pray for her.

I wrote this post a year ago in December of 2008. Since that time the friendship has not resumed, we have not patched things up, spoken, anything. I did happen upon a semi-hidden blog post she wrote within days of the falling out, me and all my faults were the topic and she goes so far as to say that she had been building me up falsely, feeding my ego and how she created this monster that I had become.

Wow that's pretty toxic... You can imagine how you would feel to have someone you considered a dear friend write such things about you... on a blog no less! to know that they were systematically set upon a course of feeding you a line of bull -- for what purpose I have to wonder? I was sick to my stomach when I read that blog post of hers. Then I realized that I didn't recognize this person she was speaking of... these horrible things were not me, although she wrote it about me MY SPIRIT REJECTS IT!!!

Well I'm back to the sage advice of my friend Miss Barbara, wise woman that she is... pray, pray, pray... so I have been praying for her, she deserves nothing less than happiness in her life and if that means sans friendship with me then so be it. At some point in the future should our paths somehow cross I love the memory of the friendship I thought we were sharing enough to speak warmly and embrace her. I wish her well and pray for her often. It's my misfortune that I apparently cared more for her than she for me.... and that's okay. It has to be, after all what choice do I have in the matter? And why would I want to seek a relationship with someone who clearly found she much preferred to play games with me by lying to me?

I'm moving on... and while I'll still have odd little pains in my heart for this former friend when I think of her I'm forgiving us both. Myself for being weak albeit human and having an off day that resulted in this loss and her for apparently being months ahead of me in killing this friendship.

I have been the recipient of many blessings this year, a loving family that loves me just as I am, a new boss/old friend making a dream come true with a position that no one else but me was ever considered for which makes me feel that there's something redeeming and worthwhile in me after all, the new friends I've made at my new job, my old friends from my old job, my blogging friends and online friends who accept what little scraps of time I'm able to give and my childhood friends who have found their way back into my life after all these years of separation, can you imagine my joy? what a blessing they are! the friendship my husband and me share with a particular couple who we are slowly socializing with more often... yes there's been lots of blessings in the friendship area of my life.

May the new year fill your heart and life with love, real, genuine, true, abiding love.