Monday, August 23, 2010

New Kent Winery White Merlot

Wine: New Kent Winery White Norton
Price: $15ish (I need to do a better job of remembering what I got.
Store: New Kent Winery

 This wine starts out very subtle. At first taste, it almost seems too light. The taste, though, develops much fuller in the mouth. It has a very floral taste...I almost feel like I am drinking roses, not a rose wine. A little sweet, but not overpower. It's nice; definitely a summer wine. 

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Winnefred Chardonnay

Wine: Winnefred Chardonnay
Price: $4.99 (I think)
Store:  Trader Joe's

"A stunning chardonnay! with notes of cinnamon toast, clementine orange, honey, and pistachio hint at future pie-eating titles! A Winnefred walks away with the gold, we'll relish this wine's citrus driven finish of ripe pear, fennel and lemon oil. Enjoy this Chardonnay with pizzas of ll kinds: three-cheese, Margherita, BBQ chicken, and pesto flatbread! Here's to Winnefred, our diamond in the rough!" ~back of the bottle

This is an extremely light wine. There are some citrus-y hints, but there is not much body at all in this wine. I did not pick up on the cinnamon toast flavor at all. That being said, I don't find it to be particularly flavorless. There is a slight acidity in the finish, giving this wine a bit more of a kick. I enjoyed this tonight with a light pasta and veggie dish. I would definitely enjoy this wine for the remainder of the summer, but when fall takes over, this wine will have to sit on the shelf.

Rating: 3 of out of 5 stars

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Forest Friends Baby Shower

My cousin and I have always been super close. We are 2 months, 5 days apart in age. Our mothers are identical twins and very close, so Joseph and I essentially grew up together. And to make things seem a little backwoods, redneck...we are technically half brother and sister, at least from a genetic point of view. As our mothers share the same DNA, it would genetically look like we have the same mother and different fathers.

He got married to his high school sweetheart 4 months before I got married, and I have always been friends with his wife. (She let me borrow her shoes in 5th grade when I had to go sing with the chorus...we had been sitting on the bleachers and I dropped my shoes off under the bleachers. Now that is a good friend.)

When they announced back in March that they were expecting a little one, we are all very excited for them. And being the hostess I am, I was super excited at any opportunity to host another event. The theme for the shower was inspired by their bedding set, Carter's Tree Tops. I perused and found these adorable invitations by Kim's Custom Creations. Don't they coordinate perfectly?

The shower was hosted at our local church at 2pm on Sunday, August 1. This was the first time I had hosted a shower at a venue, not a home, so I probably went a little overboard with trying to make sure every detail was perfectly planned.

My first task was to figure out how to set up the fellowship hall. When you're in  home, it's obvious how to arrange seating, but I felt like I was starting with a big, empty slate. The church only had 8' banquet tables...I wanted to avoid the cafeteria feel, but I did not have the resources (or feel the need) to rent round tables when there were perfectly good tables available to me. After much thought, I came up this floor plan.

The "U" shaped lay out really helped to facilitate conversion and everyone could see the Mom-to-be open gifts.

Now, I stated, the church had 8' banquet tables, as well as vinyl table cloths to cover them. Once again, I didn't see the need to rent fabric table cloths, but I did want to dress them up a bit. I took some basic cotton and made some 44" and 22" squares in a variety of colors that coordinated with our theme (light green, dark green, yellow, and pink). On the guest tables, I used 4" terra cotta pots adorned with ribbon and holding garden annuals in pink and yellow shades. The result was beautiful and organic.

The cake table consisted a beautiful cake made my the mom-to-be's sister.

The drink table consisted of my favorite strawberry-lemonade punch, several pitchers of water, and two other terra cotta arrangement.

On the food table, we used our own fabric table cloths with the square accents as well. The centerpiece of that table was the diaper cake I made earlier this summer. I also used some small forest stuffed animals to accent the table. (I searched all over for those things...finally found some at JoAnn's fabric, of all places!)

 Speaking of food, our menu looked something like this:
  • Chicken Salad on croissants
  • Fruit Platter
  • Spinach Artichoke Roll Ups
  • Veggie Tray
  • Cheese platter (cheddar, pepperjack,  swiss)
  • Goat Cheese with Sundried Tomato Spread with Pita Slices
  • Ham Biscuits
We used the front stage to put the gifts on. 
And boy, did she receive some gifts. 

We had a great afternoon-now we just need to wait about 6 more weeks to have a new little one in the family!