Tuesday, September 27, 2011

More Reasons Why I Love Alton Brown

He's nerdy, informative, knows how to cook and actually let's me know why things turn out the way they do and he's my one of my favorite celebrity chefs...Alton Brown. I wonder what I would do if I ran into him? Maybe get sweaty palms, not know what to say, geek out and get the closest thing for him to sign, all kinds of things could happen if we ever met.

Well, anyway, here is one episode that I found very fun and informative because it involves cake. I don't think I'm a sweet tooth but a lover of cake. *Big Grin* Anyway, wouldn't you agree that it's always good to learn something new everyday? Speaking of, I'm currently learning and brushing up on CSS but every now and then my mind drifts towards baking this cupcake recipe that Alton will show you how to successfully make. Hope you enjoy these two videos. Happy Tuesday Friends!

Seems like I'm not alone in my affection for the show Good Eats. For more episodes visit Khadgar34's YouTube Channel.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Wedding Week: 1950s Theme Bachelorette Party

I know my girlfriend well enough to recall moments when she talked about wanting to be a good housewife and I know for a fact she would make a great one at that. So I chose a 1950s retro housewife/woman bachelorette party that would be tasteful and thoughtful.

When it came to research for a retro housewife party it was astounding to learn how much information was out there and what other women have done. I would list every website I looked into and borrowed some ideas from but there are so many that I just can't list them all. Boo on me, I know. It also seems that every blog or website I've visited got the idea from somewhere else. So who do I put down as the originator? Don't know, but I will mention a couple links in this post and you can follow the trail yourself.

Invitations: Paperless Post. This company offers very classy and stylish online cards and stationery that cost some money but once you visit their site, you'll understand why. I'm a big fan of Paperless Post and will continue to use them for any future party planning.

Graphic designer: My husband for helping me with all my printing needs from cleaning up photos for the invitation to making my recipe cards look they way I pictured it. You are the bestest.

Location: Hosted at Biggy's Casual Italian Dining. Thank you Nancy for working with me long distance, JT my super assistant/waiter for fluffing n' puffing all the ceiling decorations and Marvin our awesome waiter for putting up with a crazy bunch of people with such cordiality and service.

Inspiration: Lacy. The KnotIt's a Jaime Thing. Google Images. Etsy. Ahhh I can't find that ONE blog where I got the picture frame idea from (can't find it!! argh!). In each of the frames I placed a pinup girl doing something that reminds me of Lacy eg. She can change her own tires and she can do things around the house with power tools!

Audio Visuals: I made a couple playlists on YouTube of 50s commercials and music. We had that running on the tube while the party was going. Pandora is also another great site for compiling and creating your favorite oldies hits.

Stores: Party City. Michael's. Target. Ikea. Any good old fashioned candy store like Rocket Fizz for us in the west coast. Walmart. And of course, The Sugar Loft Cake Shoppe for the scrumptious cupcakes.

Games: Mad Libs Bachelorette Bash and Is Your Man a Catch?. Duecuori's Good Housewife Quiz printout. eHow Bachelorette Party Games Video Series. The Bridal Party.

Party Favors and sharing recipes with the bride on recipe cards I made with my husband. I found pictures of vintage advertisements and inspiration quotes like that of Anne Taintor products.

Finally, I'd like to thank my friends from small group and bridesmaids for helping out in all kinds of ways needed. I say we delivered!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wedding Week: Ladies Luncheon

In my planning for the bride's bachelorette party and through conversation with her mother, I found out that ladies not so long ago didn't have bachelorette parties like they do now. They didn't wear phallic symbols, feather boas, hire/fire strippers and ride off into the wild night with their girls. Instead they had luncheons. Maybe you already knew this but I sure didn't. However, I can always rely on my girlfriend Lacy to re-introduce me to things of yore, like the show Laugh-In, and events such as a Ladies Luncheon.

The event was hosted at Yankee Peddlers Tea Room at 11 A.M. with all the ladies dear to her heart and that also included her sweet n' petite mother-in-law. 

The food was so yummy especially anything they did that was signature to the Tea Room, like their Poppy Seed dressing and Chicken & Dumplings soup. You know, come to think of it, every time I've had the best food at a restaurant was because I ordered the special or asked the waiter what they recommend from the menu. 

Anyway, a good time was had by all and it was certainly a lovely and unexpected gift from the bride. I had a splendid time taking in the atmosphere, laughing and being grateful for the friendships I have and will continue to nurture throughout the years. 

Enjoy some of the sights and spirit of Yankee Peddlers Tea Room:

Lemon Meringue
Chocolate Pie with Meringue
Coconut Cream Pie
Turtle Ice Cream Pie...Signature Tea Room
Steaming Fruit Cobbler
Chocolate Cake...so dense and fudgy!!

Yankee Peddlers Tea Room
5831 Highway 54
Osage Beach, MO 65065

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Sugar Loft Cake Shoppe

A couple weeks ago, and the reason for my non-postings, I had the privilege of being the matron of honor for my girlfriend's wedding. Even though we lived miles apart, I took on the bachelorette party planning and whatever else I could do for the bride to the best of my abilities. In one conversation with the bride, she poured out her heart to me and told me what kind of cake she was planning to get but it wasn't happening for her wedding. Mind you she was very gracious and grateful for whatever she had but as a best friend I just wanted to go that extra mile. So after research and personal calls to different bakeries in Osage Beach, Missouri, I ended up choosing to go with The Sugar Loft Cake Shoppe.

The owner is Kathy Odom and her website had just enough for me to call and get excited about the possibility of making a friend's wish come true. I talked with one of her employees and was informed that she, the owner, would get a hold of me soon. For an owner to busy like that was a good sign that this was a popular cake shop and the kind of cake shop I wanted to do business with. After a couple correspondences Kathy and I finally got to talk with each other and get an order for a dozen old-fashioned looking cupcakes for the party and a personal cake for the bride and groom. All set and ready to go for wedding week in Missouri.

When I arrived in Osage Beach, I made a visit to the shop and purchased two cupcakes for a taste test. Now I'm no cupcake connoisseur but I know a good cupcake when I eat one. So far I've had Georgetown Cupcakes, Sprinkles, Cake Love and all kinds of cupcakes across the country and overseas. I must admit her cake rivals some of the best when it comes to moistness and flavor. I tried the wedding cake with raspberry filling and the strawberry lemonade cupcakes. Oh my goodness, it was heavenly, flavorful and sugarrific! From those first couple bites, I knew I had made the right choice for my party and gift.

If you are ever near Osage Beach or desiring some seriously delicious sweets I urge you to stop by The Sugar Loft Cake Shoppe and give them a try. Their website is currently updating more photos of their cake creations but if you stop by in person you will see all the many designs they have created for different occasions.

The Sugar Loft Cake Shoppe
1046 Main Street
Osage Beach, MO 65065

Here are the pictures of the cupcakes:

Friday, September 16, 2011

Wedding Week: Silver Dollar City Pt.2

If you like theme parks and are in need for a vacation from the usual theme park visit, head on down to Branson Missouri to Silver Dollar City. I keep talking about this place like they pay me to advertise for them but in reality it's a place I'm quite fond of. According to their history page, it all began in 1950 when the Herschend family acquired a lease on a cave that brought tourism to the area. In order to keep the guests entertained while waiting to visit the Marvel Cave, Mary Herschend created a village reminiscent of the 1880s. This tiny village is known today as Silver Dollar City. For more information on this establishment check out their link here.

To me, the park had the appeal of Kakariko village or even an Animal Crossing town where you can interact with almost everything, including sending postcards to loved ones from the village; just like my friend Lacy did when we arrived. She purchased a postcard of one of the places in Silver Dollar City at the General Store and we all signed our names and sent our love out to Aunt Polly and Uncle Joe.

You know you're somewhere magical when Moon Pies appear.
One of the things I like to judge theme parks by is the variety of foods they offer. About 10 years ago when I visited SDC during Christmas, I wanted to get a skillet a meal so bad but was unable to because I didn't have enough money. I wanted to save that money to get gifts, and so I forfeited my desire at the time but I never forgot how badly I wanted to try some. Well, THIS time around I made sure I was the first in line for a Lumbercamp Falls skillet meal. I don't know too many parks that serve a mean skillet meal with about a spittin' distance away from fresh pork rinds being made. Not too many I can think of. This park is truly tops when it comes to the unique foods they provide. Speaking of, I also visited their apple store (the edible kind) and bought some really authentic Apple Butter. My breakfasts will RULE this holiday season!!

Sausage, bell peppers, corn, potatoes and seasonings = Good Food
Fresh crispy pork rinds...mmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Here's something yet to be conquered...

Dog n' Potato on a stick anyone?

I leave off this post today with other photos of good times with friends and loved ones. Have a great weekend!!
The Giant Swing
Southern Raised, a sibling Bluegrass band and 2011 CAM Gospel Sing-Off Winner.

A living Blacksmith, they do exist in the Ozarks.

Wasn't a fan of Yak, but Elk was good.
Fresh batch of warm Peanut Brittle makes the crumpies go away.
This is a view from the inside of the Wilderness Church where my girlfriend was proposed to last November. The bridal couple thought they would take a little time remembering that day and the beautiful future they have ahead of them. Isn't that sweet?