Monday, October 30, 2017

Snakes and Snails...A Baby Boy Shower


I have a big family, but when you add in the family of my family, it grows exponentially! And I love them just as much as my blood relatives! 

Back in June, me, my mother, and my sister-in-law, Clancy, hosted a baby shower for my other sister-in-law's sister-in-law. Clear as mud, right? OK - the shower was for Stacy, who is married to my brother's wife's brother. See...not so hard!

Edward and Stacy live in Florida, but they spend every Thanksgiving at our house along with the rest of my extended family. When we found out they were expecting, we knew we wanted to host a shower for Stacy. We invited the friends of the future grandmother, Mama Sue, since she lives here and not in Florida where the baby will be born. 


My mother hosted the shower at her home (next door to me - how convenient!). I had done the "snakes, snails and puppy dog tails" theme for my cousin's wife a couple of year's ago. We changed it up though. You can check out the original here.


Here's the whole spread. We used my mother's dining room table to set up a buffet.


Her sideboard was the perfect place for coffee.


We started on this end of the table so they could go all the way around the buffet, then funnel back in to the living room to sit. Mother has a set of white dishes, too. I supplemented a few so we'd have enough.


Here's the floral arrangement for the buffet. I picked up the sunflowers and the white filler flower at Walmart. They rest came out of my mother's yard. It was June, so everything was pretty and green!


I love this little wicker box. It hold napkins and adds some texture to the table. It also picks up the burlap brown. The striped runner was used in the Snails 1.0 shower, as well. I had a big table to cover, so I just overlapped various clothes randomly.


We planned a Saturday morning brunch for the shower. Breakfast is yummy anytime of day, and it was easy to find all kinds of goodies to dress up simple ham biscuits.


We had a basket of ham biscuits...


And a smaller basket of plain ones. These are Mary B's tea biscuits. You can find them in the frozen bread section at Winn Dixie and other smaller grocery store chains. They are a little more than bite-sized. The perfect dainty Southern delicacy!

This beautiful fruit salad was so cool and refreshing. The orange cream sauce is made from one cup sour cream, two tablespoons of orange juice and two tablespoons of honey. Mix well and refrigerate. It is tangy and a little sweet. I won first prize with this back in 4th grade 4H! Try it with apple slices, too.


The fruit salad was a little of everything that was ripe at the time. I had some beautiful blackberries, cantaloupe, strawberries, and blueberries. I also had some firm "apple pears" which I diced and added. They added a little firmer texture.


It was a brunch, so we had to have grits! This casserole is delicious. Recipe coming soon.


Mama made some of her easy banana muffins, as well as some brownie bites.


These mini muffins were a nice little sweet treat.


I also made a vanilla poundcake for dessert. It is delicious alone, but I actually put a little fruit salad on mine to make it more like a strawberry shortcake! Yumm.


I went ahead and cut a few slices before the shower, but left the cake covered until it was time to eat so it wouldn't dry out.


We set up a beverage station with ice water and white grape juice punch. Those were my greatgrandmother's punch cups.


This pic is a little over-exposed due to the morning light streaming in, but you can see the little snail on the washtub. I found these at Dollar General and picked up a dozen. They were scattered all over the table. Stacy picked up a couple of her favorite (there were several different colors to chose from) and put them in the baby's nursery.


White grape juice punch is so simple - equal parts white grape juice and sprite - chilled well.


I always try to have ice water on hand for those who prefer it.


The buffet was the perfect place for our coffee bar.


I placed one of the shower invitations on this cute blue stand. I pulled it and the blue lantern tea light holder out of my Fourth of July decorations.


By adding lots of cut greenery from Mama's yard, I was able to get two beautiful arrangements out of the one package of sunflowers and white filler. You can see a little of a sign in the picture above. It reads, "That's what little boys are made of". Even though my little boy is twelve and a half, this still hangs above the door in his bathroom!


I found the banner cards at Michael's. They were $1 for a pack! All I did was stamp them with the snail and then string them on burlap cording. 


These coffee decanters really come in handy for a party. I used my chalk labels to identify each one.


Cream and sugar, anyone? You can see the happy mother-to-be in the mirror!


Here's another cute little snail creeping along...


Stacy and the hostesses (from left - me, my mother, Stacy, and my SIL, Clancy). 


Stacy with her mother, Sue, on the left and her mother-in-law, Sue, on the right!

We were so excited to be able to host this shower for Stacy, Edward, and the grandmas! We love them all. Baby Theo is here now, and I can't wait to see him at Thanksgiving. I've already called dibs on holding him first!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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Wednesday, October 25, 2017

A Masculine Tablescape...Gerald's Birthday Dinner 2017


We had a quiet dinner at home back in August for Gerald's birthday. He picked the menu (steak and potatoes), and I did the rest. Here's a look at the masculine tablescape I put together for the (big) birthday boy!


Again, I pulled out a muslin painter's dropcloth I got at Lowe's a few years ago to fit the eight foot folding table I was using for Thanksgiving. It's really rather pretty, especially if you know what it really is!


My burlap table runner went down the middle.


It was still August (and summer...and hot...), but I wanted a masculine look, and these chargers fit the part. I got these several years ago at Walmart after Christmas when they were half off. They're made by Better Homes and Gardens.


I introduced these plates to you a few weeks ago, when I featured them in the tablesetting for Jewell's 15th birthday. they came from Dollar Tree. I love the color, but I really love the brown edge they have. Just a nice little touch to dress up an inexpensive plate.


Layers nicely, doesn't it?


The glasses are "Woodland" by Fostoria. They are vintage discontinued. They were a wedding gift from my aunt. 


I made the muslin napkins a few years ago for Thanksgiving. I have about two dozen of them. The flatware is "Austen" by Yamazaki.


I have to show off one of my recent thrift store purchases. I was missing a steak knife from the set we got when we married. I'm sure someone used it to scrape off a plate into the trash, and then just let go without thinking. I had been looking for a spare, but I found this set of six instead. They looked brand new, and I paid a whopping $5 for the set.


I used a plant that I already had as my centerpiece.

TIP - I love houseplants. I have quite a few. They add a nice little touch, plus they clean the air! This is an easy one to grow - once you know how. It is called a Mosaic plant (fittonia albivenis), and I got it at Lowes. It doesn't need light (in fact, it can't take direct light), and it like to dry out between waterings. Pinch it back from time to time to keep it bushy and not leggy.


Here's a wider view...


The deer was a thrift store find. I knew it was perfect for Gerald's dinner! The gold votive holders came from a yardsale at Faulkner, if I remember correctly.


We had New York strip steaks, roasted potatoes, and broccoli roasted with Parmesan and slivered almonds.


Doesn't this look like a tablescape fit for a man? I think so!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Beignets...A French Finale to a Cajun Meal


Jewell absolutely loved our trip to New Orleans earlier this year. She ate EVERYTHING we put in front of her! She tried lots of new things, and I was so proud of her. When her birthday rolled around, she asked for gumbo. I decided to stick with the New Orleans theme and made beignets for dessert.

I remember my mother making these when we were little, but she cut her's into small rectangles before frying. They were so good...even before I knew their fancy name!


Here's my favorite girl in front of Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans.


Do you SEE all that powdered sugar? Yumm...


Brack had his with frozen coffee. We ate here once each day we were in NOLA. Sometimes for breakfast, sometimes a late night snack. There are no rules!


I picked up a couple of boxes of the mix while we were there; although, I have seen it before at Winn Dixie.


Just follow the directions on the box. It's not difficult. I just wanted to show you how to cut them. I pulled out my Tupperware baking mat and rolled them to about 1/8".


I used my pizza cutter to slice the dough, and I was able to use the lines to keep them straight.


Have the dough ready then heat the oil. Have something to drain them on ready to go.


Powder them lightly as they come out of the oil, so it will stick. I then dusted them with a little more before serving.


This isn't the best picture, but it allows you to see how they puff up and are open in the middle. We served these with decaf coffee. They were delightful!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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