Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I Love Summer

The beach, waves, sun, longer days, going out in the boat, water skiing, crabbing, seeing friends, ahh it all makes me so happy!  But let's not forget about one of the best things the summer has to offer- it's harvest!!!

South Carolina's local, fresh produce in the summer is out of this world!  Blueberries, watermelon, peaches, cantaloupe, corn, zucchini, tomatoes- to name a few- they are so incredible here this time of year!  I love going to local farmers markets or stopping at road side stands to pick up the freshest veggies (and boiled peanuts!) from locals.

Next week starts our family beach week, and my sister and I found this divine looking peach and blueberry cobbler recipe from Cooking Light's most recent edition that we are going to make one night:

Isn't that just making your mouth water right now?  Excuse me while I wipe the drool from my keyboard. . . I hope it tastes half as good as it looks!

Another favorite summertime treat of mine that does not require a special occasion to make is:

Ahh, there is nothing better than a simple, delicious tomato sandwich.  I've probably eaten at least two tomato sandwich each week this summer.  They are so good!!

What is your favorite summertime treat?

By the way, I have a great summertime slaw recipe that I've been meaning to share, but I want to make it and take some pictures while doing so. . . Describing it simply in words wouldn't do it justice, it needs photos, so keep checking back!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

New Suits!

In light of the fun-filled weekend coming up (ahh, already counting down!), I made two big purchases from Everything But Water on Saturday!  

The first. . .
And . . .

I am so excited to finally have some new bathing suits!

I've struggled to find a new suit this summer so was really pumped to have some success on Saturday morning. . . Now, I just need to find a cute cover up!  Mine from the past summers are so dogged out and need to go straight to Good Will.  Has anyone had any luck finding cute cover ups this summer??  I'm in the market. . . And need one by Saturday!  Hopefully Target will come to my rescue!

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Good, The Bad, and The Skinny

The Good: I went for a long, long run yesterday, and it felt so good to be outside and run off some steam.
The Bad:  I made the grave mistake of going right at 5:30 when I got home from work.
The Skinny: My face was the color of my fuschia exercise top, and I felt like I was seconds away from a heat stroke when I got home.

The Good:  After running, I went to the Riverdogs baseball game, which are so fun. PURE is a corporate sponsor of the team so we have awesome front row seats behind home plate.
The Bad: Thirsty Thursday beers were a perfect thirst quencher in the summer heat. 
The Skinny:  I only had two, but I'm dragging a little bit today.  I'm attibruting this mostly to my pre-game run.  Drinking beer after a near heat stroke did nothing to help rehydrate.

The Good:  Baseball reminds me of America.  And being American reminds me. . . Fourth of July is coming up SO soon!!!  It appears that we have an awesome group of friends meeting up in Garden City and Murrells Inlet.  I cannot wait!
The Bad:  I need to dust off Jillian and get my booty in shape and bathing suit ready.
The Skinny:  So much work. Not much time. 

The Good: TGIF!!!
The Bad: No plans for the weekend.
The Skinny:   Thank goodness for no plans.

Enjoy your weekend!!!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Do you ever feel like you don't have enough photos with your significant other?

I do!  All the time! 

I'm not the best photographer in the world, and my camera has definitely seen it's better days (well, better nights at fraternity row at Wofford, hehe). . .  but excuses, excuses I need to get better about taking pictures!  Sometimes I get in these moods where I really feel like I'm missing out on capturing life's memories that I know I'm going to want to remember years down the road!  And let's be honest, any of you that know me, you know that my memory is not my biggest strength!  I need all the help I can get!!  

Well, while I was in an aforementioned funk, I was complaining to Lash the other day that I really felt like we were getting bad about taking pictures together. And then, viola!  Lash's mom surprised me with the print out below, and it literally made my day!  I just love this photo of us!  Here we are before a Wofford wedding three weeks ago in Myrtle Beach.  I even fought through the dust bunnies on my ole collegiate printer/scanner/copier to scan this bad boy to upload.  The quality isn't as great as the original. . but I still just adore it!

Still need to work out my 'tude about taking more pics. . .  Currently, I am oohing and aahing over the idea of a big girl camera but we'll see how that works out.  Maybe, Santa Clause will be interested in going 50/50 :)

Monday, June 21, 2010

First Day O' Summer

Well, it is officially here on paper. . . though I'm pretty sure our thermometers and air conditioning units have known it for quite sometime now.  I can't get over how HOT it has been lately.

When I got in my car last Tuesday afternoon after work, this is what I saw:

And then, it gets better.  My unopened Diet Coke exploded in my car from the heat.

YIKES!  Makes ya a little nervous about July and August, doesn't it?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Happy Friday, everyone!

I am so thankful it is Friday!!  This May and June to- date have been the busiest I ever remember, and I'm so glad to have the weekend for a little R&R. . .  Speaking of, this is my first weekend to be home in 6 weeks!  So say that I am so thankful not to be packing a bag and getting in the car or a plane is a little bit of an understatement!

Thankfully, I don't have too many plans. . .Or too many things that have to get done!  Lash and I are going to pop over to my cousin's house and have a birthday beverage with him and his girlfriend, and then come back and cook some of the fish we caught in Florida.  I'll be sure to post the recipe, but it is a keeper!  Pan- sauteed snapper with a Key Lime Butter Sauce. . . Yummmm.

Saturday, I'm sticking my toes in the sand with a book in hand alllll day long on Sullivan's. I can't wait to be a beach bum.  Lash's twin sisters are in town celebrating their birthday so we plan to go out with them for a fun night on the town after the beach.  Ahh I can't wait to spend the weekend here!

And Sunday is my daddy's birthday and of course, Father's Day.  Luci and I are heading to Beaufort to spend the day on the water with the fam.  So though I will have to get in the car to go to Beaufort, I think I can manage.

Hope everyone has a great and relaxing weekend!  How is it already June 18th???

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tippins' Wedding Part 3: The Wedding!!

I forgot to put in yesterday's post that our celebrity siting at Commander's Palace was the one and only Macy Gray!

I tried to say goodbye, and I choked. . .  (Props to anyone who gets my terrible joke. I just ran it by my sister as I typed this and she is not pretending to not know me.)

Anyways, on to the wedding!!

We spent all day Saturday at Tippins' parents' house lounging around and getting our hair and make up done.  Tippins' parents have a gorgeous home, and it was such a relaxing way to spend the day, chatting and laughing with each other in the comfort of a home!  Tippins was so calm and peaceful, and honestly the day is one of my favorite memories in the entire trip.

However, when 5:00 came around and it was time to get dressed for our 5:30 pictures, we were so excited!!  Here we are getting ready.  The necklaces that we are wearing were our bridesmaids gift from the bride. . . that she made herself! The green matched our dresses perfectly!


Enjoying a celebratory glass of champagne as we got dressed and helped Tippins into her dress.

The bride and her maid of honor

Above: my first attempt at a collage.  Ok blogger whizzes, help a sista out!  I've seen the adorable ones you all do. 

Following our shoe game toast from the night before, we all decided to sign the bottom of Tippins' wedding shoes.  Legend has it that which ever bridesmaid's name is the least rubbed out by the end of the reception that that bridesmaid will be the next bridesmaid to get married!  

By the way, we got escorted to the church and reception by a police escort.  I felt like such a VIP.  The ceremony was beautiful, reception so much fun, food delicious, and the band was rockin'!  And little did we know, it seemed like as soon as it started, it ended.  The bride and groom left to a second line, and instead of throwing rose petals or birdseed, or lighting sparklers, we got doo rags and danced behind the bride and groom as they left!!!  Y'all, it was hysterical.  I wish we had a video!

After the wedding, we were not ready to end our night and headed out to one of my favorite places in New Orleans, the Gold Mine!  Nola Girl, I am obsessed with this place, thanks for the recomendation!!!  I had been bragging to everyone all weekend about how great it is and how we have to go, and now they totally agree!  We stayed there until 3:30am dancing and singing the night away.  I loved it.

Sunday morning was super hard to leave, namely because we'd pushed our bodies to max for three days getting up early, being busy all day, and staying up late each night, but I would not change a thing about the whole weekend.  It was such a blast.

My biggest complaint was when I got home, I got robbed by the Charleston airport parking.  Not literally robbed, but my wallet is now officially empty.  It cost me $60 to park my car there for the weekend.  What the heck!?!?  That is highway robbery!!

Anyways, I'm already counting down until my next girlfriend gets married. . . though I have a lot of resting and recovery to do after the weekend debauchery.  Who's it going to be!?!?  :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tippins' Wedding Part 2: Friday

Friday morning, we woke up, thankfully not moving slow at all :) , ate a quick breakfast at the hotel, and got ready for the bridesmaid luncheon at Commander's Palace.  I had heard so many great things about this highly esteemed restaurant place so was thrilled to be able to experience it!

We were seated in this gorgeous private room overlooking the garden/ patio to our right.  I don't particularly love bloody marys, but had my favorite one so far followed by a mimosa while we mingled amongst the crowd.

All the bridesmaids. . . I'm disappointed the camera flash is above my shoulder. . .

As we mingled, I was in awe of the beautiful table settings.  Each seat had its own small bouquet of flowers.  It was a great way to decorate without a large centerpiece blocking the views.  And a neat sercy to take back to our hotel!

We were presented with a fabulous menu, and our mouths started watering!  The meal began with a crisp romaine salad with Parmesan, pecan smoked bacon, and a black pepper-buttermilk dressing.  Our entree was a griddle seared gulf fish, served with a dish of crab boiled seasonal vegetables with a brown butter vinaigrette.

And for dessert, a bananas foster shortcake that was absolutely fabulous. . . for a girl who says she doesn't really have a sweet tooth, I killed mine.  It was some kind of heaven with bananas and caramel sauce served over a warm buttermilk biscuit with cinnamon whipped cream.  Needless to say, I was about ready to be rolled out of there!!!

Though we were hoping to have time to take a nap after our feast, we got back to the hotel at a little after three and had to be ready for the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner by 4:30!  I ran by and spoke to my parents and sister who had just gotten into town, and rushed to get ready for round two.

After the rehearsal at St. Stephen's Catholic church, we boarded our buses and headed for Antoines for the rehearsal diner.  Again, I was thrilled to get to experience this restaurant that I'd heard so much about.  I think it's safe to say we got wined and dined on Friday!!  

These pictures do not do the setting justice.  It was stunning.
There was a jazz ensemble playing in the background, too. It was so lovely!!

The happy Mr. and Mrs. Gandy!!

Gosh I'm trying to remember what all we ate.  During the cocktail hour, the waitresses passed their famous potato souffle.  We were seated for appetizers of oyster foch, oyster rockefeller, crawfish reoumelade, and shrimp ravigote.  Then we were served an fish almandine with asparagus, then a chateau brimand with creamed spinach, and then for dessert baked alaska.  Again, food overload but it was great!!

So after our fabulous five course meal, Tippins' dad began the toasts with a perfect toast, that was just the right mix of sentiment and laughter.  The best part of all was when he said "you know, people have told me that I am supposed to feel like I am losing a daughter. . . but I don't. . . I feel like I am gaining . . ." and then he paused.  And of course, we thought he would say that he was gaining a son. . . But he didn't!  He concluded, "I am gaining a VISA card back!!!"  Y'all, we about fell out of our chairs.  Best of all, he then presented Tippins with this piece of jewelry:

A necklace made out of the hollogram of her old VISA card.  It was too perfect!

I learned last month from my cousin's wedding that I can get a little emotional at these things so I decided not to give a toast, but include the Wofford girls in playing the Shoe Game with the bride and groom.  It was such a huge hit (if you have never heard of it, it is probably a whole other post in itself)! I would highly recommend it for any rehearsal dinner. Tippins and Wilson were such great sports and the crowd got really into it!!  It was definitely a top toast of the evening.

I think the question on this one was definitely "who wears the pants in the relationship?" hehehe

I think this picture was after we asked "Who's more excited about tomorrow?"

The rehearsal dinner lasted until almost midnight so I was so happy to crawl into bed that night.  Coming up in the next post will be the actual wedding!  Gosh I miss New Orleans already!!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Tippins' Wedding Part 1: Thursday

I'm probably going to overload blogger with the number of pictures from the wedding so I figured it'd be better to break the weekend into separate posts.

I flew from Charleston Thursday morning and met two of my friends and fellow bridesmaids Blanche and Lauren in Charlotte.  On our flight to New Orleans, we were giddy!  We could not stop talking about how excited we were for the weekend to finally be here, and played Skipbo (hehe, we're gamers) to pass the time on the flight.

Everything was great until the flight attendants brought the complimentary beverage service around and Ms. Clumsy Flight Attendant splattered hot coffee ALL over my arms, shirt, and pants.  Hot coffee.  Luckily, I was not burned, but my (new, never worn) pants were wet and, not to mention, stained brown.  Ms. Clumsy was super apologetic; I was hoping to get a free flight out of the deal, but she gave Lauren, Blanche and I complimentary Bud Lights instead.  I can't complain too much because thankfully, the sister of the groom who has two young sons had baby wipes on board and apparently baby wipes work wonders on coffee! Who knew!

Anyways, after that brief hiccup, we landed in the Big Easy and headed to our hotel to meet our friend Concetta who had flown in from Raleigh that morning.  Man, it felt good to be reunited!!

We had a few hours to kill before our bridesmaid obligations began, so what did we do?  You better believe we hit up the town.  Here we are at Pat O'Brien's. . . looking a little greasy after traveling and in the hot Louisanna heat, but nevertheless, happy to be together.

Left to Right: Lauren, Me, Concetta, Blanche

We all sampled their different signature drinks and passed them around.  The pink lemonade one that Blanche got was my favorite!

After parusing the French Quarter for a while, we headed back to our hotel to get ready for the evening.  With one shower and three girls, we had to map out at least an hour and a half for all of us to get ready!

That night, two families hosted a cocktail and dinner party in Uptown (I think that's what the section of town was called).  It was such a lovely party!  I loved seeing the rest of the wedding party and meeting Tippins' best family friends.  The New Orleans crowd really welcomed us with such open arms.  The hosts served crawfish etouffe over grits with a salad for supper.  It was delicious!

Wofford BMs with the Bride

All the BMs.  
Top: Elizabeth (groom's sister), Blanche, Camille (friend from home), Concetta, Lauren
Bottom: Me, Tippins, Anne (MOH, friend from home)

After the party, the wedding party was ready to see what New Orleans had to offer for the night!!  Several of our Wofford friends had arrived by then (including Lash!), and we headed back to Pat O'Briens to listen to the dueling pianos.  That was my first dueling piano bar experience and it was a lot of fun!  Of course, we stayed up too late, but it was such a blast.

Clearly by this point, the humidity was getting to my hair!!

Fortunately, we all survived the evening. . . but not without some great stories.  Lauren made it back around 2 am, and ordered a cheeseburger, shirley temple AND a pizza on our room service tab.  I was already asleep by the time it was delivered but it was hysterical waking up to packets and packets of ketchup thrown all around the room.

Coming up next. . Friday morning's BM luncheon and the rehearsal dinner.  Blogger is overwhelming me at the moment so stayed tuned for post number 2!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

New Orleans. . . You Win Again!

What a fabulous wedding weekend we had in New Orleans.  I tell you what, I'm honestly sad the wedding is over because now my friends and I don't have a reason to go back to New Orleans anytime soon. . . or set dates that we'll all be together for parties or showers!

The weekend was quite the marathon.  Historically, marathons are not my thing but somehow I was able to squander up the energy and good attitude needed :)  Let me tell you, though, I have not stopped since my little feet stepped onto the tarmac at the airport on Thursday.  We were wined and dined throughout the Big Easy from the luncheon at Commander's Palace (celebrity spotting: Macy Gray- so cool), and rehearsal dinner at Antoine's.  I have so much to tell about the weekend but also in typical fashion, I let my paparazzi friends do all the photography so I have to wait for my Facebook notifications to go a little crazy.

I'll hopefully do a full recap of everything tomorrow so stay tuned but here is a sneak peak. . . Don't you love our bridesmaid dresses???  I just love them!

Tippins is a MRS!!!

P.S. Nola Girl, still obsessed with the Gold Mine.  The entire wedding party was there until 3:30 am last night boogying the night away.  Best bar ever.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Happy 21st!

 Happy 21st to my dear sister and best friend Luci!!

Photo probably from 2007- 2008 but I love this one! And I didn't want to spoil any recent pics of the Keys that I hope to post soon.

Of course, we had to go out last night at midnight to get her first "legal" drink.  We went to Blind Tiger, and I was super impressed- they had a band and good crowd on a Tuesday night.  I was a little hesistant about making it to midnight on a work night, but so glad we did; we had a great time!

Today, of course, we both had to work, but afterwards, we went out for a fabulous meal at Rue de Jean. It is definitely one of my favorites in  Charleston.  I got the Shrimp Provencal (penne pasta with a white wine, a touch of cream, garlic, herbs de provedence concoction). . . ahh so flavorable and seemingly very light.  Luci got Cavatelli Pasta with Seared Scallops (more of a penne pasta with tomato cream sauce with arugula and sun dried tomatoes).  Her scallops were perfectly seared- the outside was caramelized to a crunchy golden brown and inside cooked to perfection.  To top it off, we had great Kir Royale champagne cocktails that were a fun addition to our celebration. . . but, by the time we left, we were about to roll out of there!!

The birthday girl is still out and about celebrating legality, but this old fart had to come in to pack because I'm off tomorrow to New Orleans for the wedding of one of my best friends.  I cannot wait!!! I've been looking forward to this day since last summer when the groom proposed!  Honestly, it is kind of surreal that the weekend is actually here, but I'm giddy with excitement!  I hope once the weekend is over, I'll have time to really catch up on my blog and post some pics of FL, the big 21 for Luci, and Tippins' wedding.

I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Adventures in Florida

I am alive!  We had the BEST vacation in the Keys- so relaxing, and so great to get away for a few days.  We went out in the boat, fished (great luck offshore), laid out by the pool, walked the seven mile bridge, ate great seafood, enjoyed family bonding, and rejoiced when Lash got into MUSC!!  It was so fun to hear that news while we were there.  It turned it into a true vacation and celebration!

I'll post some pics later. . . right now I just want to check in because I have totally been neglecting my blog lately.  For good reason.  Read on.

Last Saturday, Lash and I left the Keys one day early to spend the night in Stuart, FL with his family and break up the drive.  I had never met this family of his so I was really excited!  His cousins welcomed up with open arms on Saturday night into their gorgeous home.  By this point, we were totally over fish and looking for more of a landlover's meal so they whipped up a fabulous summer meal of ribs and corn on the cob that we ate on their patio at sunset overlooking the water.  We were having so much fun that they even convinced us to spend an extra day and night with them and go offshore fishing the next day.  It was such a great evening; I thought it was a perfect end to our vacation.

Until 1 a.m.

And from then until the next morning, I threw up more than I ever have. in. my. life.

I have NEVER been so sick.

Let me remind you, dear readers, that I had never met this family of Lash's before.   And we had agreed to go fishing with them the next day.  On a boat.  Being sick on a boat.   Without the comforts of a bed.  A house.  A private bathroom.  How miserable!

Or, my other alternative, I was already mortified thinking about--- I was going to have to explain "Dear Springs' relatives I've never met, thanks for letting me crash here but uhh, your meal gave me food poisioning.  Thanks a lot.  I'll be staying in bed today.  Have fun!!"  I was cringing over the embarrassment.  What would they say about this rude girlfriend??

But alas, I quickly discovered this ill- timed misery was not, in fact, food poisoning. . . No.  It was the throw up bug from Satan.

I didn't sleep a wink after 1 a.m., and in my misery, somehow crawled to Lash's room down the hall to wake him up and to tell him how miserable I was.  We weren't fishing in the morning.

Praise the Lord for He is good because He had a small miracle up his sleeves.  For who was to go fishing with the family the next day, but a great family friend and doctor!!  By this point, around 6:30 a.m., the whole house was up, and knew of my illness (Lets be honest, I probably woke them up by accident, but they were too kind to tell me otherwise).  I was so weak I could hardly get out of bed and literally wanted to die, I felt so awful.  But thankfully, Dr. Guardian Angel prescribed me with manna from heaven that stopped my nausea and vomiting, and put me to sleep.

We had to spend another night in Stuart, because I did not have half the strength to make the drive on Sunday.  I think I made it out of bed for the first time at 4 p.m. Sunday.  Thanks to my outstanding chauffeur, I was finally able to limp the remaining eight hours home on Monday, but it honestly has taken me a solid week to fully feel well again.  I would never wish that hell on anyone in my life.  

I cannot express enough gratitude for Lash taking such great care of me at pretty much my lowest lows physically.  He was an exceptional nurse- - - Refilling my ice and ginger ale, wetting a rag for my forehead, and being on time for my next dose of meds- all with a big smile, compassion, and a tender heart.  I'm so thankful he was there taking care of me.  I guess we got a little taste of loving someone "in sickness and in health."  haha :)  And I think its safe to say I made a pretty lasting impression on the cousins in Stuart, huh??

But now I'm back, finally feeling better.  I hope to do a blog on the Keys before the weekend, but my sister's 21st birthday is Wednesday and Thursday I'm leaving for New Orleans for a wedding extravaganza.  Loyal readers and faithful followers, don't leave me!  I promise I'll be back!  Summer slow down!!