Our Wedding Styleboard

Elegant wedding
Our wedding by mrscrawford

Monday, April 28, 2008

Wedding Shower season continues :)

This past weekend, Michael and I threw a shower for our good friends A&J! We threw them a STOCK THE BAR shower. It was great! They mean so much to us and we wanted to do something for them. The shower was very casual. We grilled out and FINALLY made use of my backyard. We borrowed backyard furniture from my cousins and had enough seating for everyone! It was great! Thank you Jay, Ashley, and John!!!

This is a picture of me, Julie, and Alicia

This is Adam and Julie with their bow bouquet

Cutting the yummy MAGPIES cake.

They got all kinds of great stuff....

And the guys had a great time playing CORNHOLE with the boards my dad made for Michael for Christmas (my mom made the bean bags!) :)

We had tons of food and I didn't space plan for it as well as I should have....
The menu included:
hot dogs and hamburgers
chips and salsa
ruffles and french onion dip
fruit salad
strawberry spinach salad (from the WS shower--see recipe in a post below)
potato salad
cole slaw
beans (but we accidentally left them in the crock pot in the kitchen and totally forgot about them)

Drink menu:
Sangria (my specialty--recipe is from an old cooking light magazine and I love making it)
Crystal light (strawberry, orange, banana)
Sweet Tea
variety of sodas
variety of liquor

And of course, MAGEPIES for dessert! YUMM-O!

**Needless to say, we ran out of room on the buffet table and we had to move the drinks to the ground....

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Around the clock bridal shower

This past weekend I went home to northern VA to co-host a shower for my best friend from home(Lara) with my mom! We had so much fun! I am the maid of honor in her wedding!! It is so exciting to be brides together!!! :) Our weddings are only a few short weeks apart from each other.

I made these yummy Strawberry flowers with coconut cream. They were delicious. I got the recipe from the SOUTHERN LADY magazine. My FMIL loves this magazine and shared some of them with me so I could find some recipes for the shower!!! :) She also got my mom a subscription ;) (I will have to post this recipe for you all at some point soon) Here I am piping the coconut cream into the strawberries.

Since the theme was AROUND THE CLOCK, it was only fitting to incorporate all things dealing with time and different times of day. We had 3 different centerpieces.

One was in the dining room where all the food was. We used my mother's silver tea tray, filled a couple of the teapots with flowers and create a little placecard explaining it was ENTERTAINING TIME--since that was one of the "times of day" that was assigned to some of the guests for their gift. We also incorporated clocks into these centerpieces. We borrowed old clocks from one of my mom's friends.

The second centerpiece illustrated DATE NIGHT. I had a fun brightly colored flower arrangement of tulips in a trifle bowl. I had a basket with a picnic tablecloth, a bottle of wine, and 2 wine glasses. Again, we had a clock and we also put the invitation with the display. This was on the kitchen island--just for decoration.

The third centerpiece was on the kitchen table--again just for decoration. It was DINNER TIME. I used my mom's kitchen aid mixer and added flowers. It turned out really cute! We also had a little plaque that said "It's five o'clock somewhere" and of course, a clock! :)

I had a really cute--and yummy--cake made for the shower in Knoxville and then I took it up to Virginia in the car! It was a HIT!!! They made a clock face on the cake and used the color scheme lime green and orange--which we tried to tie in from the invitations and flowers for the centerpieces.

Here is the beautiful bride-to-be! :)

Unfortunately, I did not get a lot of pictures, but I am hoping people will send me more to post!

These are the games we played:
"The Groom's Name" When guests arrive, each one is given a fake ring and instructed NOT to mention the groom's name during the entire shower. If someone catches another person saying his name, they (the person that said his name) must give up their ring to the "catcher". At the end of the shower, the person with the most "rings" is declared the winner and WINS a prize.
Kitchen Memory: This is the game where you have many kitchen items on a tray. You set it out for a minute or so, then cover it up and the guests have to recall what was on the tray from memory. The guest with the most correct wins a prize.
How old are you?: This one is from Martha Stewart. Assemble a dozen or so photographs of the bride, showing her at different ages. Mix them up so they're not in order. Give pencils and paper to everyone, pass the photos around, or display them someplace where everyone can see, and have guests write down their guess as to how old the bride was in the picture (she has braces, so that must have been in junior high). A prize goes to the person who gets the most ages right.
Anniversary Game: When each guest arrives, they are asked the date of their wedding anniversary. It is written down on a sheet of paper next to their name. If they are not married, their birthday can be used. The person with an anniversary (or birthday) closest to the wedding date of the bride-to-be wins the door prize.
Timer Game: Set a timer while the bride opens the gifts. When the timer goes off, the person who gave the gift the bride is currently opening wins a prize.

So you see, we tried to incorporate TIME into all of the games! The prizes were fun little gifts Mom picked up at Stein Mart--i.e. a candle, lotion, an apron, Paula Dean spices, etc. They were a hit!! :)

Lara got a lot of great stuff off of her registry and people even got really creative with their times too! It was a lot of fun!

Here is a picture of me, Lara, and my mom!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Red Velvet Cheesecake recipe (from my Williams Sonoma shower)

WOW!!! This is the ultimate cheesecake!!! I still cannot get over how yummy this was!!! I cannot wait to get a spring-form pan so I can make this :)

Red Velvet Cheesecake

1 ½ cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs
¼ c. melted butter
1 T sugar
3 (8 ounces) packages cream cheese (DON’T GET LIGHT—GET THE REAL THING)
1 ½ c. granulated sugar
4 large eggs beaten
3 T unsweetened cocoa
1 c. sour cream
½ c. whole buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp distilled white vinegar
2 (1 ounces) bottles red food coloring
1 (3 ounces) package cream cheese, softened (DON’T GET LIGHT—GET THE REAL THING)
¼ c. butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Stir together graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and 1 T granulated sugar
2. Press into bottom of 9 inch springform pan
3. Beat 3 (8 oz) pkgs cream cheese and 1 ½ cups sugar at medium-low speed with an electric mixer, 1 min.
4. Add eggs an next 6 ingredients, mixing on low speed just until fully combined
5. Pour batter into prepared crust
6. Bake at 325 for 10 min.; reduce heat to 300 and back for 1 hour 15 min. or until center is firm
7. Run knife along outer edge of cheesecake
8. Turn off oven
9. Let cheesecake stand in over for 30 min.
10. Remove cheesecake from oven; cool in pan on a wire rack for 30 min.
11. Cover and chill for 8 hours
12. Beat 1 (3 oz) pkg cream cheese and ¼ cup butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
13. Gradually add powdered sugar and vanilla, beating until smooth.
14. Spread evenly over top of cheesecake (not on the sides)
15. Remove sides of springform pan. And garnish if desired.

Barbara's Vertical Stuffed Potatoes and Contemporary Beef Wellington Recipes (from my Williams-Sonoma shower)

These both were very yummy!

The vertical stuffed potatoes are a slight twist on twice-baked potatoes. They look so gourmet!!!

Barbara’s Vertical Stuffed Potatoes

4 large baking potatoes
1 box boursin cheese or 1 cup cream cheese
chives (optional)
shredded velveeta
8 T whipping cream
4 T butter
Fresh rosemary sprigs

Scrub the potato well and prick several times with a fork. Oil the potato and bake at 425 degrees for about 45 min. to an hour depending on the size of the potato. Remove from oven and cool for a few minutes.
Cut a thin slice crosswise from both ends of the potato. This will allow the potato to sit on the plate. Cut potato in half crosswise. Carefully scoop out the pulp leaving about ¼ inch around the shell. Brush a little oil on the skins of each potato half.
With a mixer, mash the pulp until smooth. Add seasonings, boursin cheese or cream cheese, butter, cream, and velveeta cheese. Mix until smooth.

Place the mashed potato mixture in a pastry bag. Use a large star top and pipe the potato mixture into each potato half. Potatoes can be made ahead of time, covered and refrigerated. When ready to serve, place on a baking sheet and back at 325 degrees for approx. 30 min.
Sprinkle a little paprika on the potatoes
Garnish with fresh rosemary.


Contemporary Beef Wellington

¼ c. (1/2 stick) butter
1 T finely chopped shallots
1 lb. mushrooms, finely chopped
¼ c. (or less) madeira (wine)
2 T. minced parsley
salt and pepper to taste
ground nutmeg to taste

Beef Wellington
6 (8-ounce) beef fillets, cooked but at room temperature (Trim the fillets of all fat and season with salt and pepper. Barbara cooked them on a griddle on the oven—it was one of those ones that are rectangular and went over a couple of stove eyes. Cook for a few minutes on each side—they will be cooking in the oven too so you want to make sure they are not overcooked. )
Salt and pepper to taste
12 sheets phyllo pastry
1 c. (2 sticks) butter, melted

For the duxelles, melt the butter in a skillet and stir in the shallots. Cook over low heat until tender. Stir in the mushrooms and cook for 10-15 min over low heat or until all the liquid evaporates and the mixture is very dark in color, stirring occasionally. Stir in the wine, parsley, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Increase the heat slightly and cook until all the liquid evaporates. Chill, covered. In the refrigerated until needed.
For the beef wellington, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Cut 2 sheets of plastic wrap slightly longer than the phyllo and arrange the sheets overlapping on a work surface. Cover the phyllo with a damp paper towel (this will help avoid drying out).
Stack 2 sheets of the phyllo on the plastic wrap, brushing each sheet with some of the melted butter. Arrange one fillet 3 inches from the end of the narrow edge of the phyllo stack and spread the fillet with ¼ cup of the duxelles. Fold 3 inches of the phyllo over and brush the exposed phyllo with melted butter. Using the plastic wrap turn the fillet and phyllo and brush with melted butter. Fold in the long sides of the phyllo and brush with melted butter. Continue folding the phyllo (as you would a burrito) around the steak, brushing with melted butter after each turn..
Arrange seam side down on a buttered baking sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining phyllo, remaining butter and remaining fillets. Bake for 20-30 min. or until the pastry is puffed and golden brown and the fillets register 140 degrees on a meat thermometer for rare. Freeze for future use if desired.

**i think i might call WS and check on the beef wellington recipe because it didnt mention anywhere in the recipe about cooking the meat but i know she cooked it before hand. i didnt take notes because i figured it would be in there. i did the best i could from memory. ill let you know.

Strawberry Spinach Salad recipe (from my Williams-Sonoma Shower)

OH MY GOODNESS THIS IS SOOO YUMMY!!! I am slightly allergic to some nuts and generally I don't like them anyways, but I decided to try these caramelized pecans on the salad.....OH MY GOODNESS so yummy :)

Strawberry Spinach Salad (serves 4-6)

Caramelized pecans add crunch!
10 oz fresh spinach
1 cup sliced celery, cut on diagonal (Barbara says this makes it more pretty)
1 pt. strawberries

Caramelized Pecans:
1 cup sugar
1 cup pecans

For caramelized pecans, put sugar in a non-stick skillet (make sure it is non-stick) on medium heat. Roll the pan (do not stir the sugar) from side to side until all sugar is melted. Then add the pecans and stir with wooden spoon until they are browned. Immediately place on parchment paper. Cool (it will look similar to peanut brittle). These can be prepared ahead of time.

Poppy Seed Dressing
¾ c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 T. grated onion
1 T. poppy seed
1/3 c. vinegar
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 cup Crisco oil

Mix sugar and vinegar in a blender (I imagine a mixer or food processor would work too) Add salt, grated onion, and dry mustard. Slowly add oil. Stir in poppy seeds or blend with blender on the lowest speed. Chill.

Combine spinach, celery, and halved strawberries. Coat with poppy seed dressing. Toss gently and garnish with caramelized pecans.

(sorry, I don't have any pictures)

Friday, April 11, 2008

I've been tagged :)

I was tagged to list six unimportant things about myself by The Style Diaries...WAHOO!! My first tag! Yay!
1) you link back to the person who tagged you.
2) post these rules on your blog.
3) share six unimportant things about yourself.
4) tag six random people at the end of your entry.
5) let the tagged people know by leaving a comment on their blogs

1. I don't like to mix my food and usually eat one thing at a time. (i.e. if I have a plate of corn, beef, roll, salad, fruit, etc) I would start with the corn and not go to the next thing until all of the corn was eaten) Michael always points out how weird it is that I do that.
2. I am insanely unorganized, but when it comes to sheets and towels I am a bit finicky about how they are folded and how to put sheets on the bed....Michael is learning how I like things done :)
3. I get a kick out of how much money I can save at the grocery store--I love that Kroger has how much you have saved at the bottom of the receipt. I like to make/beat records. My mom sends me coupons in the mail to help me out--since I dont subscribe to the newspaper.
4. I hate throwing out my magazines--no matter how old--especially wedding magazines. I still have ones from over 5 years ago.
5. I am the world's worst when it comes to identifying artists and song titles when a song comes on the radio.
6. I prefer listening to the radio over a CD or IPOD.

OK, now I tag....and if you haven't checked out their blogs, here are their links:)

Evan McJames Hickey's Blog
Living our Love Song
It's a Jaime Thing
The McWoods
The Warnock Family Blog
Elizabeth Anne Designs

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Red and White Preppy

Red and White Preppy--Please invite me to read your blog! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!! :)

Sunday festivities (Part II)

After church, we made the trip to Chattanooga. We had a 3:00pm appointment with the pastor at Brainerd UMC (where we are getting married) for our first pre-marital counseling session! It was great! This is the book we are working through!! I highly recommend it as it was highly recommeded to me by my cousin and his wife :) It is called BEFORE YOU SAY I DO (by H. Norman Wright and Wes Roberts). You will need one for you and one for your fiance.

After our session, we went to go and see Michael's parents and then all went to go and see one of their family friends who has about 15 classic cars. We got to go and pick one out for our send-off/grand exit for after the reception! We are sooo excited!!!!! We are going with the blue one. Because of where it was in this man's garage, we couldn't get a GREAT picture, but you get the idea. It is a 1931 Chevrolet. It has one of those little windows out the back. It is going to be so cute for the pictues!!! (the green one pictured below is similar in style and it was easier to get a picture of)

Sunday events

Sunday, Michael and I went to church together where I usually teach Sunday school to in the 3-5 year old class. We attended service today. My good friends, the Nichols, (who I used to nanny for and who's children have been in my Sunday School class at one point or another) are getting ready to go on a medical mission in New Zealand for a year. They were speaking in service about their trip and I really wanted to be there for it. Michael didn't have to work at the golf course and I didn't have to teach. Normally, we would go to Cedar Springs Presbyterian Church together, but we really wanted to see the Nichols before they left. Anyways, tears were shed. I am truly going to miss them. Michael and I took the 4 children to see ENCHANTED before Christmas together! I had so much fun! Here are some pictures with the children (Phillip, Claire, Anna, and Andrew)

Here are some pictures of them from my nannying days :)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Saturday festivities

Saturday was the day of the very first bridal shower! I have been looking forward to it ever since Michael's mom told me she wanted to host one for me. It was a Williams-Sonoma Spring cooking class and shower! It was AMAZING!!! I was able to have a total of 11 people including myself and the host. It was in Knoxville at our Williams-Sonoma. We had a wonderful cooking "teacher"!

I had some of the ladies who attend the church where I teach sunday school, my mother, my sister, Michael's mom, and my good friends (Julie and Cathy) came to the shower. We had a full meal that was sooo delicious!! Strawberry Spinach Salad with this yummy poppy seed dressing, vertical stuffed potatoes, Beef Wellington, and Red Velvet Cheesecake. YES! You saw that right...RED VELVET CHEESECAKE!!! It was sooo delicious. I will have to post the recipe at some point. I really want to make it! :)
I (unfortunately) did not get any pictures of the salad--it was soo yummy. I will be posting that recipe at some point as well :)

This is me, my sister (Marsha), and Julie

Dawn and Me

Karrie, Carrie, and Me

Me and Cathy

Julie and Me

Michael's mom (Jane)--the FMIL, and Me

My FMIL had the cute apron I have on in these pictures made! It even has my new monogram!!! She thought of everything...right down to the favors--Williams Sonoma spatulas in the cute spring colors tied with a cute ribbon!

Everyone raved about the food! It was such a wonderful idea for an intimate shower! I had a ball!!!!

And now for the presents:

As you can see, I got all kinds of great things!!! :)
stemless wine glasses
bride and groom cookbooks
Untensil container with a variety of cooking utensils

I cannot wait to start using these!!!

(more pictures to come from my sister's camera)

I had a wonderful Saturday!

Williams Sonoma shower
ordered invitations
hung out with my mom, Marsha (my sister), and the FMIL! :)
We all went out to dinner as a big family (Michael and his parents and me and my family)


Sorry I've been MIA.....

I took off work last Friday to spend the day with my parents (who came down from Northern Virginia) in Chattanooga. We had 4 wedding vendor appointments on Friday.

We left Knoxville at 8am and drove to our linen rental company store. We had a brief meeting with the linen company. I showed my parents what Pam (the wedding planner) and I came up with for our reception tables. Linens are pricey. We had to do some wheeling and dealing and make many compromises, but what we came up with will be beautiful. These pictures don't do it justice, but of course will look much better with the tables set and with the flowers, etc.
Table overlays

Chairs with chair covers and the light peach organza sash

Our compromise: We will be doing 40% of the tables with the striped sheer overlay and the remaining 60% will have a light peach solid satin table runner. This will save a few hundred dollars!!! :)

These are for our wedding cake tables:

Brides Wedding Cake: Its this pin tucked sheer overlay with little shimmery beads at the tucks. We will have a light peach underlay for this table (matches the table runners that will be on 60% of the tables). IT IS BEAUTIFUL!!!

Grooms Wedding Cake: This is a sheer striped overlay. It has a masculine feel without being to "harsh" next to our soft toned decor.

This is for our sweetheart table. This is a cream fabric with embroidery detailing that brings in our pale yellow and the peachy pink color!

This is for our candy buffet table. This polka dotted sheer overlay gives a whimsical and fun touch to our candy table! I am very excited to see how this will turn out :)

Mom and Dad brought in so much candy that they have been collecting for the candy buffet! It looks like they robbed a candy store!!! ;o) I am seriously going to have to take some pictures and post later!! :) They brought in some more big glass containers to add to my collection. I think we are up to around 20 containers :)
Also, Mom and Dad found a GREAT deal on some small squatty Mason jars for the guests to fill up with candy and take home! They brought all 300 of those too! (and I think we are going to need a few more because of our HUGE guest list) Needless to say, my house is the Wedding War Zone!! So much stuff!! :)

We also met with the florist on Friday. She met up with us at the linen company's store. My parents hadn't met her yet and she brought in some stuff to show us. Everything is going to be so beautiful and our florist is AMAZING!! I am so excited!!! (sorry no pictures)

Next up, our menu tasting! In a word, YUMM-O!!!! Everything was so delicious! I cannot wait!!!!
We will be having 2 options:
Herb Roast Tenderloin of Beef, Truffle Demi Glace
Marinated Airline Chicken (which we are calling Marinated Breast of Chicken--I don't want the guests to think we are serving rubber chicken from some in-flight meal deal), Mandarin Cranberry Relish, Orange Chili Sauce

Each entree is served over a bed of mashed potatoes and asparagus!
The presentation was spectacular!!! I wish I had gotten a picture!!! :(

Our Salad choice:
Asiago Caesar Salad

Mom and Dad were very pleased--and so was I! :)

Our last appointment of the day was at the hair salon! I was so excited! Judy (the hair stylist) knows exactly what she is talking about and for a rough draft (no product), she did superb!!! of all, my dad was a trooper through the whole thing. (so was Mom, but that's a given!)

More to come later today from Saturday and Sunday's festivities!!! (including my first bridal shower!!!)