Archive | August, 2011

Always a Bridesmaid?

31 Aug

I’m headed to a wedding this weekend.  Instead of buying another dress, I opened my hall closet and sifted through the many bridesmaid dresses I own.  My first thought was to ombre one of the dresses, but after some research I learned that you cannot dye or bleach polyester satin.  While I do own a sewing machine and can sew a straight line, I am in every sense of the word a novice, so I wanted to avoid a total overhaul at all costs.  Why not just take the dress to a real seamstress you ask?  Well, I wanted to avoid any additional costs at all costs as well.

So…many moons ago, I was a bridesmaid in my dear friend Gaby’s wedding.  I wore this dress.

Its a perfectly lovely bridesmaid dress, but lets face it, where am I going in that dress after the wedding?  I walked down the aisle in this dress about a week after finding out I was pregnant with my eldest son.  Today, two giant baby boys later there was no way I could squeeze into this dress.  So, I started ripping at the seams.  I took the guts of the bodice out and the cut the skirt to the length that I wanted the new dress (with seam allowances).  I sewed the guts of the bodice back together, with the boning and pinned it inside what would be the new top  of the dress.  Then I carefully sewed the top seam.  So at that point I had a cape-like garment.  I don’t own a dress form and I tried having my 5 year old pin me in the dress but that didn’t work either.  Then, my dog got tangled in the cord to the sewing machine and dragged it to the ground where it broke into pieces.  I gave up at that point.  So, I moved on to make a belt…

I saw this on 100 Layer Cake and saved the scraps from the cut up dress.  I had everything on hand so it came together quickly.  I cut all my pieces and then began gathering and sewing by hand.  The effect was amazing.  I love this belt.

Rejuvenated by my belt, I took my cape to Caasi’s house.  Not only does she have a dress form, she is much more skilled than I am at sewing.  She literally looked at what I brought her and said, “oh, that’ll be easy.”

I don’t know how easy it really was, but she made it look easy!  I saved the zipper from the original dress so Caasi was able to fit the dress properly and sew the zipper in.

So, now for no additional cost I have a super cute dress to wear to this weekend’s wedding, giving new life to an old dress!

Cake of the Month – Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

30 Aug

My August cake has arrived!  Caasi gave me this cake for June and this one for July.  I am pleased to introduce you to you August:  a Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake!  So simple…but delish!  No frosting…just a dusting of powdered sugar on top.  I’m enjoying a slice as write this post….mmmmm

It’s Real Simple.

29 Aug

This is a quick post because I was so proud of my ingenuity! I would really love to have a wooden salad bowl that is large enough to fit a field of veggies (or fruits) but I don’t. Here’s a quick pic of what I came up with for a last minute gathering of friends and family for dinner:

Nothing unusual, right? That big round thing is a chip and dip set from Crate & Barrel (here’s one similar). I just tossed the arugula (aka rocket salad in Europe) in the larger (chip) section and poured some yummy champagne pear vinaigrette in the smaller (dip) section. Tomatoes and hot house English cucumbers on the side along with an olive medley.  Real simple, huh?

Jellies and Horsies at The Birch

28 Aug

If ever in San Diego for a visit, long or short, I strongly recommend stopping by the Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. It can be a slightly quick walk-thru or you can spend hours getting lost with all that sea life you probably wouldn’t want to be swimming next to. Or maybe you would.

Looks like that sand snake from Beetlejuice.

The plethora of  flora and fauna fishie knowledge is too much for one trip and the amazing lighting makes for the most beautiful photos you could ever take with your iPhone. You could totally take great photos with a regular ol’ digital camera but you can’t post those on your Facebook, tweet about it, or Instagram your buddies instantly of your finds.

Here's Looking At You, Kid.

My favs: the jelly fish, the big red octopus (she gets real agro from flash photography, besides who uses their flash anymore?), the starfish, and the seahorses- the majestical almost mythical seahorses. They have leafy seadragons, which are beyond me.

That is a REAL LIFE leafy seadragon. A-SEA-DRAGON!

I’ll have plenty more images but I’ll save them for later random posts when I can’t think of something to blog about. I’ll just save those for when Vett or Caas are like, “You haven’t blogged… blah blah blahg!” Just kidding. That’s usually me complaining to them.

The Jellyfish.

Rue Saint Jacques

27 Aug

For our last night on the town, Sarah (MOH) reserved us a table at Rue Saint Jacques. Our reservation was early so it felt like we had the whole place to ourselves. We toasted the bride and she shared stories about her fiance that made us all tear up a little. We are all now aware that water proof mascara is a must come wedding time!

Along with great conversation came great food. I ordered risotto with chanterelle mushrooms. I know it doesn’t seem like much, but did you see the sandwich I had earlier for lunch or how about the eggs benedict at brunch? I know it seems as though all we did was eat the entire trip, but we did do some shopping too! Of course I can’t reveal all, it was a BACHELORETTE weekend after all!

I am so excited for my favorite bride! Cecila, I wish you every happiness in your life with your soon-to-be husband! Cheers to the bride! – Caasi


26 Aug

Shopping makes us hungry! The groom-to-be recommended we try Mocca, a small cozy deli. This hidden gem is tucked away on a walk street only with cute cafe tables and umbrellas set up right in the middle of the road.

I’m a sucker for sandwiches so I tried the turkey sandwich with cranberry sauce and brie on a French baguette. I am so excited to have tried this sandwich, it is so simple and I can’t wait to make my own! Thanksgiving leftovers anyone?

The combination was delicious. I really love cranberry sauce, it added a nice tart to the sandwich and the brie was silky smooth. Yum-O!


25 Aug

Saturday morning Sarah, aka MOH, planned on brunch at Triptych. Triptych has a cool and artsy vibe. The restaurant has colorful fabric panels draped across the high pitched ceiling, local artist paintings hanging on the walls and concrete floors. The bottomless mimosa special makes this place a must stop!

Triptych offers traditional mimosas with orange juice, but they also offer mango, grapefruit and more! I tried out the specialty -champagne with peach simple syrup aka: the Farrah Faucet! I’m a sucker for peach and it didn’t disappoint!

The menu had spectacular, traditional brunch fare. One that caught my eye was the eggs benedict with spinach and mushrooms. A few of the other ladies tried out the crab cake with their eggs benedict. It look rich and filling. The portion was perfect and I wouldn’t have changed a thing! So yummy!

After brunch, we shopped till we dropped! Thanks Sarah for the fun photo!


24 Aug

There is this great wine bar in San Francisco called Amelie. The atmosphere is chic and modern and they even have French written on the ceiling. Now, I don’t speak French nor read it, but there is an English translation painted on the wall as you go to the ladies room.

I tried a glass of French Mascato. I love sweet white wines and this one took the cake! I could have had an entire bottle myself! Some of the other ladies opted to try the wine flights. Wine flights are a great way to try a few wines without the hefty price tag.

While I was still full from fondue and appetizers we had at our first stop, some of the others tried escargot, ravioli with truffles and other tasty entrees. I am not one for trying snails, but everyone said I was missing out.

We all really enjoyed Amelie and would go again. The service was fantastic and we were in good company. Did I also mention that the bride was serenaded?

All photos are courtesy of the bride to be, Cecila!

A San Francisco Treat

23 Aug

Recently I spent the weekend in San Francisco! As you may remember, one of my best friends is getting married and we spent her bachelorette weekend in San Francisco. It was a beautifully planned event by the MOH, Sarah. Sarah is not a professional planner, but she should be! The weekend was so packed with great food and fond memories that I can’t get everything out in one post! This will be the first in a short series of posts about the greatest weekend!We all met up at LAX on Friday morning and boarded our flight! It was a little over an hour and we had arrived. We took a short trip on the BART and there we were, in the center of it all! San Francisco is such a gorgeous city!

We hoofed it up Powell Street to our hotel. I was not prepared at all! Hiking up a hill in heels was not the best idea. It seemed like an eternity to get to California Street!

We stayed at the Stanford Renissance Hotel and we had the most amazing view from our suite. I love the architecture in the city! I always wanted to live in an apartment with a fire escape. I think I may have watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s one too many times. My husband offered to build me a fire escape outside our bedroom window, but that would have looked pretty silly on our one bedroom house!

Check out tomorrow’s post…for more on our fabulous weekend!

Back-to-School Kicks…

22 Aug

My June-Bug has her own sense of fashion. Take a peep at her Back-to-PreSchool kicks:

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