Tag Archives: weddings

Going to the Chapel…

Happy Tuesday!  I hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July and that you are staying cool during this tremendous heat wave!

I, for one, had a fantastic weekend!  Larry and I drove to VA Beach for our friends Beau and Gen’s wedding, which was a spectacular soirée. 

On our way to the beach we sat in just a little bit of holiday traffic,

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but we simply could not complain about this view!

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Or the weather!  It was a truly beautiful weekend!

My camera broke right before the ceremony, so I don’t have pictures of the actual wedding. 😦

However, I do have pictures of the rehearsal!  The wedding was held at a country club on a very green golf course with rolling hills. :)  The site was absolutely breathtaking!DSC03553

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Right before my camera broke I was able to grab a couple of shots of the reception decor. 

Gen is a very artistic and amazingly creative gal!  She handmade these glass paper weights using sand from the beaches of both Virginia and Florida.

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She also named each table after something beach-y.  Larry and I sat at the Nags Head table 🙂

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Weddings are so much fun.  Not only is it an honor to share in the bride and groom’s special day, but it is also a great way to catch up with friends you may not get to see as often as you would like. 

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We are so happy for the beautiful couple!  Congratulations, Beau and Gen!!!  :) 

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~Jen

magnolia Remember, Be Happy, Be Healthy, Be You!!!

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My Best Friend

Little Miss MIA is back… again!

Have you ever had a time in your life when it was go-go-go constantly, and when you finally did get to sit down and rest it was time for bed???  Well, that is how the last two weeks have been for me. 

I’m thinking that since school is finally out for the summer, Beth’s wedding was pulled off without a hitch, and Larry is back from Costa Rica, life will be much calmer and somewhat back to normal 😉

In fact, yesterday was a wonderfully, blissful and relaxing day, which is good because it was our second wedding anniversary!  🙂

It’s still hard for me to believe that two full years ago I married my best friend.  It feels like just yesterday we were deciding to be an official couple!

In fact, the story of our relationship has a rather complex beginning.  We dated for a little while our sophomore year of college, but being 19 and in college we decided to just stay friends.  We both dated other people, but were somehow always drawn back together.

It wasn’t until the day of my graduation from college, three years later, that we decided to be more than just friends.  Larry told me in those beginning days that we would be together forever.  To be completely honest, I thought he was just sweet talking me! 😉

On June 21, 2008, I realized he was pretty serious 😉

It was the most beautiful day of my life.  We were married in rural Virginia at Clover Forest Plantation surrounded by our closest friends and family.

[Source for All Photos]

During our first two years of marriage, we have survived lay-offs, grad school, a recession, family illnesses, and so much more.  It truly is a wonderful feeling to know that your best friend is always by your side through thick and thin, sickness and health, the good, the bad, and the ugly. 

Who knows what the next two years will bring.  What I do know is that no matter what life may throw our way, we will pull through, stay strong, and stay true to those sacred vows we spoke only two short years ago. 

~Jen

magnolia Remember, Be Happy, Be Healthy, Be You!!!

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Bridesmaids Dresses and Salads Dressed

While Dallas lounged by the fire,

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and Larry tried to get Lucy to give kisses (She’s very particular about who she kisses.  He was trying to blow candy breath in her face, which usually works, but not tonight),

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I was making a masterpiece of a salad.

shapes salad (Source)

Although our salad did not turn out as beautiful as the one above, I’m pretty confident that it tasted just about the same 🙂

I found this recipe in a Shape Magazine a few months back.  It was adapted from  the Beach House at the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua in Maui, Hawaii (1 Ritz-Cartlon Drive, www.ritzcarlton.com).

I only made three changes to the recipe.  1) I used agave nectar instead of sugar in the dressing.  2) I marinated and grilled a portabella mushroom for me along with a steak for Larry.  3) I did not using dressing on the mushroom version of this salad, because the grilled mushroom was so juicy that it provided its own “dressing.”

Sesame steak salad

Serves: 4 (Serving size: 2 ½ cups salad mixture, 4 oz. steak)

Prep Time: 45 minutesCook Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Nutrition Score per serving:

381 calories, 21 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 19 g carbs, 29 g protein, 3 g fiber, 88 mg calcium, 4 mg iron, 782 mg sodium

Ingredients

For marinade and steak

1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon minced ginger

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1/2 tablespoon chopped cilantro

1 teaspoon chopped garlic

1 teaspoon thinly sliced green onion

1/8 teaspoon pepper

16-ounce flank steak

For dressing

1/4 cup water

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons lime juice

1/2 tablespoon oyster sauce

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon chile flakes

1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic

2 tablespoons canola oil

For salad

8 cups baby spinach

3/4 cup diced papaya

1/4 cup julienned radicchio

1/4 cup julienned carrots

2 tablespoons daikon sprouts

2 tablespoons julienned red pepper

2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

1 tablespoon cilantro

Directions

In a small bowl, mix together soy sauce, sugar, ginger, sesame oil, cilantro, garlic, green onion, and pepper. Put mixture and steak in a zip top plastic bag; refrigerate 45 minutes, turning once or twice.

Meanwhile, to make dressing, heat water and sugar on the stove until reaches a simmer. Remove from heat and whisk in lime juice, oyster sauce, lemon juice, chile flakes, and garlic. Whisk in oil; set aside.

Preheat grill or grill pan. Grill steak for 2 minutes per side for medium rare.

In a large bowl, combine spinach, papaya, radicchio, carrots, daikon sprouts, red pepper, peanuts, mint, and cilantro. Toss with dressing. Place 2 1/2 cups of salad mixture onto four plates. Slice steak thinly on the diagonal and divide the slices evenly between each salad. (Source)

It was simply amazing!

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This is my mushroom version.

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DSC01097 DSC01086 This is a must try salad.

The cilantro, mint leaf, and radicchio make the salad so flavorful, that you don’t even need a dressing!

Speaking of Dressing!

I need to pick a Bridesmaids Dress for my friend Beth’s wedding in June.

As you can see, Beth is incredibly beautiful and fashionable.  I do not want to let her down.

So, I’m asking for your help.  I’ve narrowed the picks down to two dresses.

Dress 1

dress 1 dress 2 alt (Source)

Dress 2

dress 2 dress 1 alt (Source)

Larry has cast his vote.  Let’s see what your vote is!

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