Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Birthday, Ben!

Today is Ben's birthday! We had a party to celebrate. Appetizers!! Dennis brought his chipotle dip. It wouldn't be a party without it!

I made spanakopita.

I made crostini, and opened a jar of Trader Joe's bruschetta!

Mom made these fancy French cheese poofs called gougers.

Snack attack!

Vana was the bartender.

She made this version of Dark & Stormies that used COCONUT rum instead of dark rum.

They were amazing!! Cheers!

We got out Kate's assortment of toys from when she was just a wee baby!

For dinner, I made crockpot Thai Pork Stew. Mom brought broccoli slaw, and Cheryl brought a fruit salad! It was a FEAST!

Yay! Cake time!

Happy birthday to Ben!

I made orange cake with orange buttercream frosting. It was SO GOOD.

Kate and Dad brought the balloons for the party, and they also picked up party favors for everyone! They got those little washcloths that are tiny squares until you drop them in water, and then they grow to be regular-sized washcloths!

There it goes! MAGIC!!!

Unveiling time.

Princesses for the girls, and Superheroes for the boys! I called that Ariel one before anyone else hardly got a chance to see the assortment. MINE!!!!!!!

You know it's a good party when Ben takes off his pants!

Then he busted out the Green Man suit!! Here he is creeping out his dad:

Green Man!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Cooking Club: The Last Meal on the Titanic

Yumi was the hostess for the April Cooking Club. For her theme, she decided we would recreate the last meal served on the Titanic before it sank. The menu for the meal is available online, and we each chose something to make!

I did an item from the hors d'oeuvres course, Canapés à l'Amiral. This appetizer is a crostini topped with shrimp butter, shrimp, and fish roe.

Champagne, of course! Cheers!

The shrimp butter was delicious. It had cream cheese, butter, brandy, garlic, tomato and more.

Valerie made the fish course, Poached Salmon With Mousseline Sauce. She first made her own broth to poach the fish in, and then topped it with a DILL-icious hollandaise sauce.

So good. The cucumbers were the perfect pairing.


Yumi made Chicken Lyonnaise. This was chicken smothered in onions.

This may have been the juiciest chicken I have ever had in my LIFE?! It was amazing.

Emily made Lamb with Mint Sauce. MMM!

And Summer made some vegetable sides, Minted Green Pea Timbales
Creamed Carrots. These were both SHOCKINGLY delicious!!!!! For some reason, we all had low expectations for the peas, but they were terrific.

Summer ALSO made Punch Romaine, which contains champagne, white wine, white rum, orange juice, lemon juice and ice. THESE WERE INCREDIBLE. CHEERS!

Just like on the Titanic!

Valerie made Asparagus Salad with Champagne Saffron Vinaigrette. This was so fresh and yummy.

Nancy topped us off for the night with Chocolate Painted Eclairs with French Vanilla Cream.

Oh, hi!

Usually we are pretty full by the time dessert rolls around, and thus usually go light on our dessert portions. NOT TONIGHT!!!!! We ate this entire platter and then EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US ATE A SECOND ONE. Go, Nancy!!!!!! They were delightful.

This meal was delicious. It definitely would have been a good option for a last meal.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

2013 Gravel Rouser Grab N Git

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Gravel Rouser Classic. The Grab N Git was a little different this year! Instead of being a Friday night event, it was a Sunday morning event. There was still beer at the finish line, but with french toast instead of chili! Behold this year's number plate:

Another twist was that each checkpoint featured a physical challenge. There was brick toss, basketball, frisbee golf and putt-putt. Summer and I were stationed at the pool pavilion on East State.

Our physical challenge was Pin the Pipe on the Leprechaun! Kelly Shaw created this beautiful leprechaun.

His pipes.

"I want me pipe!"

Brisby joined us, and wore a festive green tutu to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.

 Sad ballerina. I think she was bored waiting for our first set of racers to arrive.


They had to wear a blindfold and then pin the pipe onto the leprechaun.

We had a large group of racers at the beginning.

There's Kelly! The leprechaun's creator!

Pretty close!

Summer, the leprechaun and me.

Waiting for more racers. Brisby was ADORABLE in her outfit. Summer added a little jacket because it was very chilly.


Good job!

After all 28 racers came through, we got to head to the finish line.

Mer had set up an amazing french toast production!! She's been baking loaf after loaf of her famous cinnamon swirl bread in preparation for the event, and set up griddles in the Athens Bicycle parking lot. Once the slices were golden brown, they transferred them inside to chafing dishes. There was also a buffet with maple syrup, powdered sugar and bananas!

French toast production!

Mmm, the french toast was a great success!! As was the event! I'm happy to be a part of another fun Gravel Rouser Grab N Git.