Friday, June 21, 2013

Brunch for the Bride To Be

The morning after the retirement party, I was excited to host a brunch for my sweet friend Christina to celebrate her upcoming wedding. Brunch is likely my favorite party to host, so anytime I can coerce my friends in that way, I like to chose brunch as the meal for the party. The menu was made up of some of my favorites and one new item that I was excited to share. My Grandmother's blueberry muffins, my aunt Christy's cheesy grits casserole, bacon and cheddar quiche, and fruit salad served in sugar cones with fresh whipped cream. No brunch is complete without my father's buttermilk biscuits and this time he shaped them in the perfect scalloped edge half dollar size. Along side the biscuits I served sliced ham and my mother's peach preserves.
After the gifts were opened, dessert was served. Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing and a White Cake with Raspberry Filling and Cream Cheese Icing.

Retirement Celebration

After almost 27 years of work for Auburn University, my mother retired on May 31st. Since March my cousin and brother and I have been planning a surprise reception and the first Friday in June finally came. What better reason for cake and champagne than a retirement party and a surprise one at that. Family from North Carolina, Louisiana, and other parts of Alabama came as well as some of my mother's oldest friends from high school from as far away as Albany, Georgia. My very talented Aunt was there to document the evening and all of the party pics can be found on her website:
Carrot Cake 
Dark Chocolate with Cream Cheese Frosting
Lemon Tiramisu Shooters

Baby Banana Bundt Cakes with Dark Chocolate Drizzle
Oreo Cheesecake (made by my talented friend Marsha Darden)
Individual Strawberry Shortcakes with Fresh Whipped Cream to Dollop on top
Cheerwine Punch and Coffee Punch
Sorbet Sparklers and Champagne

And Of Course Cookie Favors
The party was super fun and I appreciate those who came from far and near to surprise such a sweet and hardworking woman! Cheers to your retirement Mom! May your next 27 years be exponentially more fun than the last!! 

Graduation Flowers

I was hired to create party plans and flowers for a couple of different graduation parties. The first was held at a local restaurant and the other held at the home of one of the graduates. No matter what the theme, I find it true that little details make the big picture seem so much more cohesive. Whether it is repeating the pattern of the table runner on the dessert picks and on the food cards, to using similar flowers for the centerpieces as in the powder room- when you find a party with intentional components aimed at pleasing the guests at every turn- even those that surprise you- you will find a party that is executed as close to perfect as one can make it.Though I know I have a long way to go to find that perfection, it thrills me to think I find myself on a similar journey as my grandmothers did each time they hosted a garden club luncheon, a bridal shower, or holiday dinners with the family.

I do love Orange and Blue

For the second year, I have had the honor to create flowers for an AU Vet School event and this year I was excited to add a few  additional events for them as well. I love that they keep the tradition of using orange and blue flowers for their centerpieces, and while some people I know grow very weary of finding more ways to use orange and blue, I welcome it!

Yes, I did say we have turkeys...

As if we didn't have enough fun projects going on, my sweet husband decided that we should add "Turkey Farmer" to our resumes- though, I can take no credit in the care for these birds. I guess Jay appreciates my passion for cooking sustainable food. Anyone interested in a heritage turkey for your Thanksgiving dinner?

Young~LeCroy Wedding

In mid-April, I had the pleasure of working the wedding of a friend's daughter. After months of planning, it was time to create all the flowers for the ceremony and reception and coordinate the events of the wedding day. The weather could not have been more beautiful- gorgeous sunshine and perfect temperatures.
The Bride chose shades of ivory and blush colored flowers- mostly gorgeous hydrangeas and I added pops of bright pink and silvery foliage to frame the bouquets and arrangements.
Bride's Bouquet
Bridesmaids' Bouquets
Two Tall Arrangements for the Altar and Personalized Pew Markers for the Parents' Pews
The reception was held poolside at the home of one of the Bride's Family friends. As the son began to set, the candlelight glistened from the tables and the candles hanging from mason jars around the premises. It was beautiful!


It took one batch and then thankfully the orders starting coming in. I've always made sugar cookies as favors for parties. I use a consistently delicious recipe from Coastal Living (Sugar Cookie Recipe) and they always turn out the same.
The first order was for a friend's daughter's birthday. She also asked that create a chalkboard sign for the party.
I had the pleasure of making cookies for a local women's club, several graduation parties, the birth of a friend's grandson, and some birthday dinners.
Whether individually wrapped or delivered in a box, I think these cookies are a delicious way to celebrate so many occasions. I would love to make some for you...

Prom Season

For the past few years, I have had the pleasure of creating prom bouquets for a sweet family friend. This year was especially fun because Abbey was soon to graduate and had designed her own prom dress- a beautiful emerald green gown with beautiful gold trim on the back. She plans to study graphic design in the fall and received several scholarships. This year's flowers were neutral to allow her dress to be the focus.
Another sweet family friend, also a graduating senior/scholarship recipient asked that I create her bouquet too. She wore a beautiful purple gown and asked for specific colors for her bouquet to compliment the dress.
Both of these girls have proven to be outstanding young women and will continue to grow into the people God made them to be. I will be cheering for their success!

Sweet Shop Birthday for Sweet E

Last year I had the great fortune of hosting a baby shower for my sweet friend Michele's new baby, (Baby Shower)
and I was thrilled when she asked if I would help her prepare for Baby E's First Birthday. The theme was one near to my heart- a sweet shop. My Aunt Polly created a huge appetite for me for sweets, so I figured I could help with no problem.
First I did invitations- cute cupcakes with foil paper bottoms and cute pink and purple tops with a candle coming out of the top. Then for the table, I made cute candy topiaries and balloon topiaries to flank either side of the cake. The cake was made by one of my talented friends, Britni Ingram. It was not only super cute, (the icing was the exact same celadon green as the birthday girl's dress with colored dots and large gumballs at the base) but so delicious too! For one of the favors (guests also filled treat bags with candy), I made pinwheel cookies and wrapped them like pieces of candy. The party was deliciously sweet and a success!

Spring is Here and the Parties Begin

A sweet friend of mine asked me to cater a brunch for a group of very special people. I chose a bright pink, orange, and yellow color scheme after finding some super cute Mara Mi napkins which gave me the opportunity to incorporate my favorite flower, the daffodil.
The menu included most of my favorite brunch foods:
Spinach and Strawberry Salad with my Grandmother's Vinaigrette, Grape Salad, Brie En Crute, Chicken Salad Croissant Sandwiches, a couple of flavors of Mini Muffins, and Bacon Cheddar Quiche. Dessert was a fantastic cupcake bar with Strawberry Cupcakes, Carrot Cupcakes, and Dark Chocolate Cupcakes. To gild the lily just a little more I also served Ghirardelli Brownie Bites, and Glazed Lemon Cookies with a side of milk.