Thursday, September 30, 2010

Hopin', Wishin' & Prayin'

...for FRIDAY! Oh man people, this has been a rough week. Rough as in I am currently eating mac & cheese out of a box and biscuits with butter and I DO NOT CARE! To boot I have taken over the tv and am catching up on all my Bravo reality shows, Flipping Out seems very appropriate right now. I know I am wallowing, but plan to let it go after tonight. I want to enjoy the fun weekend S2H and I have planned, so once I finish this biscuit I am forgetting about work and the events of this week! The weekend agenda includes date night, tailgate party, and lots of time in the kitchen. We plan to see The Town. Has anyone seen it, yay/nay?

To help take my mind off things I have been perusing the webs for a little bit of cheer.  In case you are in my boat-praying for Friday to come, here is a little distraction to help get you through the work day!

how cool is this water bottle? genius! i wish i would have thought of this!

after eating 1,000 calories tonight maybe i'll cut back this weekend and sip on these.

this brought back cozy childhood memories!  my family used to vacation in maine every summer.  my parents actually met in maine in their teens during a family vacation! not sure i remember ME being particularly aromatic though...

i'll be making these pumpkin cookies for the tailgating party, yum! for sunday steelers i'll be treating S2H to chili!

digging the photo above?  check out the rest of stephanie rausser's work here.  very fresh.

if only i could wear these leggings and a hoodie to work tomorrow...might make the day bearable.  i think a pumpkin spice latte will have to do.

these two girls are inspiring!  i might just have to start a thursday girls night!

That's all for now sweetsies!  Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sunshiny Sweet Takes Penn State...Mac Clan Style

This past weekend S2H and I headed to the great tailgating land known as Penn State!  It was perfect weather for a football game, sunny and a crisp 70 degrees (much more pleasant than my previous PSU game).  We loaded up the mini-van with chili, buffalo chicken dip, apple crisp, and as many Mac Family football fans as we could fit and took off for Happy Valley!  Once in Happy Valley we met up with S2H's brother and sister-in-law (also PSU grads) and their two girls.  All in all it was a good showing of Macs, including S2H's mom and dad, Aunt Nancy & Uncle Jim.

{check out that yummy spread, color coordinated of course!  how cute is little em?! and yes, jen and i have such good taste that we went for the same white-out t-shirt for the game (had to do a wardrobe change as i was originally in blue).}
We tailgated before the 3:30pm kick-off and had fun catching up and tossing around the football.  We also talked about the revival of my blog, which Uncle Jim fondly referred to as "Sunshiny Sweet!" Hahaha...I knew I was going to have to use that for the blog post title! :)

{the whole gang!}

Penn State played Temple this weekend and it was a pretty close game in the beginning, but Penn State had some big plays in the end and won 22-13 .  I can't really say that I was paying too much attention to the game though.  We were sitting right next to the student section and their was plenty of action in the stands to keep me entertained.
{joepa taking his rightful place on the field, nittany crowd surfing, best student section ever}
We couldn't have asked for a better Fall day or tailgating crew!  For the next game we are off to the "Alexandria, VA" PSU Campus for a little local tailgating action.  Any food ideas for me?  I'm thinking of making football cupcakes or something pumpkin!  Let me know if you have any suggestions.  Cheers to Football Season!

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Tasty Goodbye

This week officially ends the summer season.  But you wouldn't know it with the sweltering 90 degree days, so S2H and I embraced the weather and went out for bbq!  BBQ holds a special place in my heart since my love with S2H officially blossomed in Kansas City, MO.  And we all know that KC is the mid-west bbq capital!  I also love going out for bbq because it is definitely something I can't whip up at home.

We headed over to Rockland's BBQ, an Arlington staple.  Rockland's has a homey feel with its rustic decor and friendly staff.  You can tell the owner has a lot of heart, not only for food, but for pups!  Every Thursday you get a free pulled pork sandwich if you bring your pup along to dine.  It is the cutest thing ever!  The patio has a nice little corner with doggie treats and K-9 toys.  S2H was swooning, another pro for us getting a dog!  
{give you an idea of the charm}
I was already smiling when we took our seat next to the K-9 gang with my mint sweet tea but I was glowing when the food came out!  Baked mac & cheese, coleslaw, and tomato/vinegar pulled pork (brisket for S2H). Yuummm-o.  And the bbq sauce was to die for, almost good enough for swimming!

We finished off the meal with an S2H style dessert...a pitcher of Blue Moon.  It was so nice to take a moment and sip some yummy brew and talk about how fun the summer has been. It has been a whirlwind season with weddings and family visits.  I hope the Fall brings just a many fun memories and moments with family and friends!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Summer Flash Back: Family Vacation

Summer solstice is right around the corner, closing out the hottest season EVER on September 21st. And I can't let the summer end without posting about my one beach trip of the year!  This beach trip was a big one for me as it was my first family vacation with S2H's huge clan!  I'm talking multiple houses on the Outer Banks to hold the all the aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, and siblings!  It was crazy, I have never experienced such a family vacation.  The Mac Clan does not mess around.  They have organized dinners, activities, beach tents, and happy hours!  Yes, each house choses a theme, a night and they host a happy hour for everyone else with goodies and drinks. Hippie Happy Hour below...we even made tie-die shirts!
{See-HUGE Family, and there are peeps missing from this picture!  I'm on the right with a baby (I'm squinting-not cute)...S2H has 7 baby nieces and nephews so everyone pretty much got to hold a baby!}
S2H has been going to the Outer Banks since he was 10, and this planned family craziness is a tradition.  Another tradition the Mac Clan has is the annual family photo on the beach.  Now this may be the usual for most of you, but the OD's are not a group photo bunch.  And definitely not a coordinated clothes family!  S2H's sister decided on white shirts and khaki pants for the picture.  I worried for weeks about what to wear for my first Mac family photo opportunity!  The ladies in the Mac Clan are fit- as in they have four babies and still stay teeny tiny, so I was a little self conscious.  Here are wind-blown results:
{S2H's immediate family...hello kiddos!}
{Each sibling got their own individual "family" pic, including me and S2H! Hahaha}
The wind was absolutely insane on the beach.  The whole time I was trying to swing the hair out of my face.  Not a good look.
{Me and baby Jake, and proof that I did try and have luscious beach locks for the picture}
Overall, it was an amazing week and I really enjoyed the quality time with the Mac Clan.  Everyone was very warm and welcoming.  Can't wait for next year...any happy hour theme ideas? :)

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Bouquet Toss

S2H and I just attended our third wedding of the summer season.  All have been beautiful and just as special as the happy couples.  I am behind in posting about all these wonderful weddings.  My idea was to feature one wedding every week but I have to go out of order because of the unique events that happened at the wedding this past weekend.  
Our friends, Jayana and Dan, got married in Dunmore, PA this past weekend and the wedding was straight out of a fairytale.  Jayana has incredible taste and her detail oriented nature shined throughout the whole wedding.  The nuptial mass was also incredibly sweet and they did an amazing job honoring their families. Here are a few pictures to show what I can't put into words!

{the gorgeous reception at the Scranton Cultural Center, Jayana started dancing here when she was 5!}

{S2H and I meet Jayana through work, here is the rest of the work crew and table mates}

{i was swooning over the details, this candy bar was color coordinated and to-die-for. monogrammed to-go bags included!}

{chocolate words}

I could go on and on with pictures of this gorgeous event, it was just amazing.  The wedding was also a lot of fun, just like the couple!  In the middle of all the dancing they took a pause for the bouquet/garder toss.  I usually try to steer clear of this tradition but their were too many people pushing me towards the center for me to resist.  I stood off to the side with all the single ladies and did my best to keep towards the edge of the action.  Well guess what?  That pile of roses came right at me!!

{see me to the right.  i was so shocked!  and about 5 shades of red! p.s. how gorgeous is jayana!?}

{now the mortifying part, the garder!  i had no idea what to do and was wishing for a strong beverage!}

Can you believe it?!  Quite the eventful wedding for me.  I can only imagine the pictures and video footage...hello awkward Meghan faces!  Hopefully they will get misplaced during a freak accident.  Anyways, it was a beautiful wedding and I feel so blessed that S2H and I were able to share in the celebration of two amazing people!  Congrats Jayana & Dan!  

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Goooo Duukkkes

I'm not much of a football fan, if anything I get most excited about tailgate food options!  However, I have a little prideful football glow today!  In case you or your significant other (ahem S2H) isn't plugged into ESPN all day, let me tell you, JMU beat VT for the first time ever yesterday!  The Dukes upset the Hokies with a 21-16 win, in the Hokie house I might add!  This is a HUGE deal for those from Virginia...Tech and JMU are just not part of the same football planet.  But today the Dukes rocked the Hokie world!  Congrats boys!  Gooooo Dukes!

image via here.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Not Just Hand Soap

I know, I know, this is not a very exciting post (especially for a Friday).  But I just can't help it; I have found an amazing new soap and I have to share!  My general stance with hand soap is that I buy whatever is on sale and never buy those refillable soap holders.  I love how pretty the glass and ceramic holders are but I feel like they always break or stop pumping, and seem to gather water at the bottom...and we all know what that leads to, ew.  In the past Bath & Body Works was my favorite hand soap, especially the holiday editions!  But hold the phone, and good bye Bath & Body Works.  Sweet Nina introduced me to Motif, the most delectable soap to have  ever graced the sink counter top.  Their motto says it best so I am just going to quote.  "Motif is dedicated to making the small, unexpected things in your life just as precious as the big ones." I am 100% serious - this soap puts a smile on my face. They have the best scents and the cutest pattern labels (the bottles are also biodegradable and recyclable).  Right now my favorite is blackberry basil, but I have cypress & pear waiting in the queue and I can't wait!  It is like a heavenly pause every time I wash my hands!  So where do you find this magical soap (besides the website)? Target, and it is  priced at $3.99, less than the B&BW soap , bonus!  I know you think I'm crazy, but try it for yourself and get back to me :).  Happy Weekend!

image via here.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Liquid Gold for the Hair

While in Charlotte this past weekend I snuck over to my old hair salon for a little trim.  I know this is pathetic, but I haven't been able to find a stylist that I like and can afford in the DC area (yes, I have lived here for three years).  I have a strict rule not to pay over $50 for my hair as I usually just get a couple inches taken off and some layers...easy peezy.  I can't justify giving a stylist $80 for such a basic cut, especially when they only blow dry it half way...grrr.  Needless to say my stylist did her magic and my split ends disappeared and all my fly-aways were tamed in less than 40 minutes!  
The greatest part of the experience was the new product she introduced me to.  Usually I steer clear of asking for products because they are so pricey but my hair was so smooth that I had to ask.  She said she now swears by Earthly Body's Marrakesh Hair Serum.  This stuff is awesome.  It tames your hair and helps it dry faster!  You can also use it on damp or dry hair.  She gave me a few samples and it actually worked when I styled my hair at home, a true miracle!  I've been searching online for the best price and the range is between $15-$23.  Not too bad since a little goes a long way.  I am still in the honeymoon phase since it has been about 5 days but I feel like this may be a new chapter in my hair life!

image via here.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Summer Reading

During my summer trip to the Outerbanks with S2H and his family I became totally gripped by Stieg Larsson's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  I think I finished the book in about 3 days.  I stayed up til 3am one night! I am a nerd in the way I become so engrossed in a book, I just can't help it!  One night I was reading, and the book was so intense/violent that I had to wake S2H up and make him sleep on the floor (we were in separate rooms to set a good example for the kiddos!)!  I have now moved on to The Girl Who Played with Fire.  So far this book is just as good as the first.  At this point I'm not sure how much of the book I am even absorbing because I want to figure out what happens so bad!  It will definitely be a book I have to read again.  But for now I need to hurry up and finish and move on to the book club book.  To follow up August's book, To Kill a Mockingbird, we are reading Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.  Did you know Capote and Harper were childhood friends?  Harper actually helped Capote with the research for In Cold Blood.  We figured this would be a neat connection to explore.  The next meeting is at the end of September, I'll let you know how it goes!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Moore to Love

The weekend has finally come and it is time to celebrate my amazing friend Nina and her groom! I am so excited to be in Charlotte, showering these two wonderful people with love and witnessing the beginning of their new life. Congratulations Nina & Mark!