Emerald in the Woods

 Our friends came up to visit this past weekend, and they wanted to go “camping”. The boo and I were like, alright! We have a 3 bedroom tent, let’s do this. But then other people in the group made the requirement of…running water and electricity. WOMP. So somehow we ended up in a beautiful log cabin (mansion) in the woods. Definitely check out Emerald in the Woods. It’s spectacular.

 This place could sleep I believe up to 20 people, but there was only 10 of us. We brought enough food for the week..but we only stayed two nights. It was fully equipped. TV, WiFi, game room with air hockey, hammock, grill, wrap around porch, giant kitchen, two car garage, 4 full bathrooms. This place was stocked. Linens, towels, toilet paper, everything was included. Basically we were in a luxury hotel in the woods with no made service.


We were definitely not “camping”. It was a weekend getaway, wrapped in the silence of the woods and dark lit sky of stars. I had a great time cooking in that kitchen, and have big meals together with our friends around the dining table. We ended our last night there around a campfire, roasting marshmallows and making s’mores.

I really enjoyed the peace and quiet and not having to think about my “fast paced” life at home. But now its Monday and we are back on the grind!!!

Life with Bawse

After being cooped up all week due to the unpredictable rain, we decided to take Bawse out to Leesylvania Park and test his swimming instincts. They were there, but he definitely was scared. Which is to be expected, coming from a dog who is scared to walk into unknown places. He actually had to get CARRIED out into the water, and then he swam back to shore because he hated being in the water. Granted, it was the Potomac River. I wouldn’t want to swim in it either!

He’s such a character. If you pick him up and hold him over water, he starts doggie paddling…before he’s even in! I guess he just wanted a head start!


Girl’s Night In

Photo by Deanna on Instagram

When my friend Deanna decided that she wanted a quiet girls night in, I decided I wanted to host it. I love having the ladies over, board games, and just girl talk. Deanna LOVES froyo, so I wanted to put together a sundae bar, complete with toppings. With the help of Michelle and Iza I think we did a pretty good job. Even number of ladies put us on two teams for board games. I had a really good night and think we should do this more often!

Photo by Deanna via Instagram
Cupcakes by Iza, Photo by Deanna via Instagram

*siiigh. always a good time with the ladies!

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The Outerbanks, North Carolina

I have a new favorite “local” beach. I say local because I don’t have to fly there. The Outerbanks! I know I am so late, there are already a bajillion people who have been there and love it. But I really do. The water is clear, and the beaches aren’t too crowded. And its more family oriented so there’s not crazy teens drinking and causing a ruckus. (Note if that’s what you want, don’t go).  If you want a nice quiet clean place to relax…OBX is it. I had so much fun, even though I was only there for the weekend.

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We stayed at the Days Inn Kill Devil Hills OCEANFRONT, and the beach was just a few steps out. The hotel itself is like an old colonial house. It was very cute and the staff was very friendly. We are pretty low maintenance so we didn’t really need much. They also serve a free breakfast every morning of your stay, and there’s a pool :D. Everything was very cozy. Plus there is a bbq pit and picnic tables in the back if you wanted to have your own bbq.

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We spent the day swimming, reading and lounging at the beach. It was great. The water was clear, and there were plenty of sand bars to keep me feeling like I was safe. (I love sharks, but I am terrified of them). No trash or jelly fish. Just clear water…and your occasional mole crab carcass.

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After the day at the beach, we got cleaned up and enjoyed this view at dinner. Review on the place later…

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Before we headed out we went to explore the dunes. Where I got my first bug bites (3!) of the summer. No fun. Also its really hard to walk up sandy hills. We did see tiny tiny frogs though. It was so crazy! They were so cute. They were about the size of his fingernail.

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It was a short trip, but a much needed break. I really like it out there and plan to go back a few more times before summer is over. Also, Who’s Bad, the Michael Jackson Tribute band is playing there later this month… might have to catch them out there!

Father’s Day Crab Boil

I spent Father’s day with my big brother and his wife, my nephew and the dog. Here’s the visual recap.

Great weekend with family. Next up, going to the OBX for the first time!


Cookout Season!!

One of the best things about sunshine and warm weather is grilling outside with your friends and family. The smell of charcoal and meat in the air, a slight breeze and chasing after napkins when the wind blows is where it’s at. Had my first cookout this weekend at the condo and it was fuuuuun. I am happy. Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

My second attempt at Kalbi (korean short ribs) and they were a hit. Which made me really proud, because instead of using a recipe this time, I just made it the way I wanted the marinade to taste like and it was a winner. We had short ribs, chicken wings, burgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, kabobs and chocolate cupcakes! Can’t wait until I can throw crawfish into that mix!

Mardi Gras 2012

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It’s FAT TUESDAY! I celebrated it this weekend with my friends and family and we had a blast! We had gumbo, etouffee, crawpuppies, hurricanes, bourbon slushies, and lots of love. Dinner tonight at the Cajun Experience. Photo Album from this weekend will be up on my facebook!

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Edit:// The Details
Sorry about the quick photo album blurb, I wanted to get  pictures up on the day of. As you can probably tell, it was a lot of fun! I spent the night before baking cupcakes from Cupcake Rehab’s recipe and birthday cupcakes for my niece. I also spent almost an hour making a roux for the gumbo the night before.

The next morning it was time to frost all the cupcakes, make the crawpuppy batter, chop up green onions, celery, onions and more for the gumbo and etouffee. I’ve stressed myself out before trying to make sure there was enough food for everyone at my previous parties, but this time around, I put a first come first close disclosure on the evite. There was food, cocktails and fun for the night.

My oldest brother decided that we needed a real witch doctor for the party, so he and his wife made a costume, and I painted his face. The guests could take polaroids taken with him in front of the laugh now cry later cut out. We had plenty of beads, hats and kazoos, not to mention prizes for the golden baby.

I am not a fan of the traditional King Cake, but luckily my favorite baker Marilla had a cupcake form for me to try out…they were awesome. Everyone loved it. I had huge golden babies to put inside. Except instead of being in charge of planning the next party, or king for the day, they got to choose from silly prizes. I love being able to share the spirit of Louisiana with my friends and had a GREAT TIME. I can’t wait for my annual crawfish boil, location TBD.

What did you do for mardi gras?