Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Saturday afternoon, my beautiful maids of honor (my sisters...aka the best girls EVER) gathered the bridal party troops (we even had a magical guest appearance from the one and only MOD) and hosted a delightful afternoon bridal shower for yours truly! I am collecting pictures and working on a nice little recap but I could not wait any longer to post a little picture of a VERY special surprise from my dear friend and roommate, Ashley! She knows me all too well and I think this is the most perfect gift for any bride to be! I have a soft spot for personalized gifts and with a new last name on the horizon, I think all brides like to get a little sneek peak at their new last name. When I opened this up, my eyes got a little misty. I told my sweet friend Crystal I needed a focal point in order to blog about this unique gift. She said I didn't need one and to just simply share how enchanted I was with it considering I wouldn't stop carrying it around for the rest of the afternoon! Ashley- you are a gift giving genius! Such a special gift from a special friend. Love you, Ash!

I have seen this creative gift on a few of my favorite blogs and recently featured in the new Summer 2010 Issue of Martha Stewart Weddings! LilaFrances can be found on Etsy, via {here}. You can also find LilaFrances on Facebook and become a fan. And another reason to scoot on over and surprise your favorite Bride- 10% of the proceeds for these handcrafted beauties goes to Ovarian Cancer Research, in honor of the artist's mother.

Images via {here}

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Amen, is it really 2010?!

Well...it's official! The youngest Nido girl has carried on the sisterly trend and has waved goodbye to Providence High and hello to Appalachian State! (how convenient and closet friendly that we all did not have to get rid of our black and gold high school apparel to trade in for new school colors...we're black and gold FOR LIFE) I remember when Nat was in elementary school and 2010 seemed light years away. We must be having fun because these years seem to go by more quickly the older that we get.

We celebrated the graduate all weekend long with family, friends and in true Nido fashion, hosted a a graduation party that should have been featured on The Food Network! (I will be dedicating an entire post...or three...to the outstanding menu created by none other than my dear Godmother, Angela!)

Congratulations, little one!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Fresh Mozzarella or Goat Cheese? (And Other Life Lessons...)

When it comes to good food, Kealy and I are from the same mold. We discuss flavors to the fullest, digest recipes in detail and reminisce about last night's meal as if it was like experiencing love at first sight. When we used to sit in neighboring cubes at work, we were told that just listening to us talk about how much we love food would instantly cause someone to gain ten pounds! Surprisingly, we are both two little health nuts (who always have room for something sweet to end a meal!) Alas, in our minds, there is no other way to be.

A few weekends ago, Kealy and I decided to take a delightful Sunday hike up to Crowder's Mountain, about 40 minutes outside of Charlotte. With busy work weeks and our heads in a spin, it was nice to enjoy the fresh air. As our little legs made their way down the mountain, our conversation went in a tasty direction (surprise surprise!) Kealy asked me if I could eat only one cheese, for the rest of my life, which would it be? Fresh mozzarella of course! This quickly turned into a food frenzied game and as I type up this memory, and our choices, my mouth is watering!

Pasta? Paparadelle and Rigatoni
Vegetable? Asparagus...wait...are tomatoes a vegetable or a fruit?
Fruit? Strawberries and Blackberries
Yogurt? Greek!
Breakfast food? Cereal
Fish? Salmon
Salad? Greek Country Salad! Duh!
Herb? Basil
Dessert? Tiramisu...Cannolis...Apple Pie...Gelato....ok nevermind this category is impossible to pick one
And the winner of the official "holy trinity" of food goes to...Tomatoes, Basil and Mozzarella!

Thinking back on this tasty little game is a good reminder to never overlook the little things in life. Some around kitchen nerds like us might think we are absolutely nuts and overly obsessed with the art of good eating but in my mind we are taking one of the little morsels in life and magnifying it, because it explodes with happiness. In our world today, it is so easy to let yourself drown in the day to day routine and situations that challenge us in ways that try so hard to take us down. It seems as though a serious epidemic of what is known as "busy-ness" has taken everyone around me. A lot of my sweet friends have been running around like crazy with work and just day to day happenings that take a toll on our well being and overall happiness. It is in these times that we have to stop being "busy" and quit being "stressed". Stop thinking about the things you can't control and start focusing on the things that you can. Pick out the positive points of your day and trash the negative ones- when you wake up, you have a clean slate and the choice to make it a fantastic day.

The middle of the week is upon us and there is so much to be thankful for. Take a few moments today to step away from the madness and sprinkle your life with some happy thoughts! And what the heck, while you are at it, grab a friend, go on a hike and make up a wacky game to play.