Thursday, August 29, 2013

First Annual Falconhead Independence Day BBQ

An alternate title for this post could be "Lizzie Discovers Washi Tape and Proceeds to Put it On Everything". 

The weekend after the Fourth of July, I had our family and neighborhood friends over for a little Independence Day BBQ.  We noshed on my in-laws amazing BBQ chicken, corn on the cob, my mom's awesome German Potato salad, blue berry cobbler and other picnic-type foods.  

In my mind, I would have beautiful red flowers overflowing my pots and in my planting beds.  However, we've had SO MUCH rain this season, I am having a hell of a time keeping anything from not drowning.  So to make up for my lack of flora, I stuck flags I snagged from Target's Dollar Spot in each pot.  


In the mudroom, I created a drink station.  I had bottles of water, Capri Sun and beer in the cooler, iced tea in a pitcher and I made Skinny Dragonberry Rum Twist in my drink dispenser.  

I had been eyeing up Pottery Barn's Rhodes Dispenser Stand- and was totally willing to pay full price for it- until I realized it would be too small for my nearly-nine-inch container.  So you know how I roll-- I do it my damn self.   I snagged a pot and base from Lowe's, sprayed them a glossy red, and glued them together.  

I was inspired by Kim's fence planters, and sprayed a couple leftover cans the same glossy red, trimmed it in washi tape I picked up at Lowe's for about $2.50 and added some patriotic flowers from Trader Joe's.

The bulk of the party was meant to be held in the backyard, so I opened the fence gate and decorated them with a fabric banner I made from scraps I had leftover from a Halloween costume gone wrong.  

I probably should have ironed it before I hung it.  Whoops.  

On the day of the party, it was projected to be 97* , so I left sunscreen both inside and out in the back yard as well as bug spray (just in case).  I had snagged a little tray at a yard sale for $.50, sprayed it the same glossy red and trimmed it in the same washi tape.

I was going to have about 10 kids at the party, so I wanted to make sure there were plenty of activities to keep them occupied.  We set up an  inflatable pool, along with a water table to help keep them cool.  I set a basket of goodies outside for them including sidewalk chalk, pool toys, water guns and DIY ribbon wands I made out of ribbon, dowel rods and, you guessed it, washi tape.  

 You guys, I love me some washi tape.  Expect it on everything now.

Another thing that kept the kids attention was the Play and Freeze Ice Cream Maker.  My sister-in-law, Angie, brought it with her to pair with the blueberry cobbler, and the kids sat outside rolling it back and forth to each other.

Abby gives it a roll

Owen intercepts and sends it to Bridget across from him

Of course, I think it only kept their attention for about half the time needed.  I am pretty sure my mom and Angie finished making the ice cream.

I love hosting family gatherings.  My family lives about 45 minutes away from me, and while that isn't a ridiculous amount of time, I don't get to see them as much as I'd like to.  I especially don't get to see enough of these sweet faces:

my nephew Hayes.

His sassy sister, Skylar
my niece and goddaughter, Abigail.

Our friend's daughter, McKayla

our handsome neighbor, Townes

This is one of my favorite group of pictures from the day; my 21-month-old son pushing his nearly 8-year-old cousin on his Mater toy.  

This kid is a beast.  

It was such a great afternoon, and I got the best compliment from my niece Abigail-- she said Aunt Lizzie throws the best parties.

Seriously the best words ever spoken about me.

I hope to make this a yearly event, so next year you'll see a recap about my 2nd Annual Falconhead Independence BBQ!

Always & Forever,

Monday, August 26, 2013

Wedding Crashing: Rustic Farm

Calling all brides-to-be:  get your pinning trigger finger ready, because THIS is how you a rustic farm wedding with class.

You guys remember our friends Max and Whitney?  Well on May 18, 2013 we were honored to be invited to their wedding at the groom's parents house in Unionville, PA.

The ceremony was held on the front lawn with the house and beautiful courtyard as a back drop.  On the day Max proposed, the smell of lilacs filled the air of their front porch, and they paid tribute to this fragrant memory by having lilacs everywhere- including the mason jars with tea candles that lined the aisle.

Max and Whitney chose a self-uniting ceremony and had their good friend Sara act as an officiant.  The ceremony was so beautiful and intimate, I felt honored to be present for this moment.

photo via Jenna Walcott Photography

photo via Jenna Walcott Photography
Whitney looked... stunning.  There is no other word to describe it.  Her dress had everything: the mermaid style bodice was covered in lace and rhinestones, with feathers peaking up from her modified sweetheart neckline.  The skirt has big ruffles of silk organza.  She kept her jewelry simple, but added the perfect amount of drama with a gorgeous diamond cuff and a cathedral length veil.

photo via Jenna Walcott Photography
Her bouquet was the most beautiful bouquet I have ever seen and contained peonies, succulents and , of course, lilacs.

Her bridesmaids were given carte blanche in picking a dress; the only rules were short and neutral.  Without consulting the bride or each other, these five ladies picked dresses that played off each other perfectly.

photo via Jenna Walcott Photography

We need to talk about the favors.  If you are looking for those nasty Jordan almonds, look elsewhere.  Each guest got their own mason jar mug to carry around with them for the rest of the night.  They had chalk board paint on each one, so you could scribe your name to your glass.

You guys, mason jar mugs.  So yeah, this happened.


Instead of the traditional guestbook, they set up a photo station for guest to have their picture taken, and then write  a little note in a photo album.  It was a great way to remember each guest on the day

I loved this heart shaped cut of wood.  This is a beautiful memento of the day to be displayed on a mantle or bookshelf for years.

One of the personal touches was the actual beverages provided for the evening.  Max is a brewer for a local brewery, so clearly a beer aficionado.  Max was given the opportunity a while back to go to Belgium and learn brewing techniques from Jean van Roy at Cantillon Brewery.  In honor of their special day, Jean sent a few kegs of their limited gueuze as the toasting beverage.  

The owner of Farrente's Meats is a close personal friend of the groom's father and did the catering for the wedding.  They provided the most amazing appetizer I've ever had:  tomato soup with grilled cheese croutons.  

The reception was held under a tent directly next to the ceremony area.  Throwing tradition to the wind, they chose a family style seating plan-- which lead to us getting to meet new people!

photo via Jenna Walcott Photography
The table linens were a simple and crisp white cloth with a burlap table runner. Mason jars and vases were filled with lilacs and roses of all colors and rose petals were scattered about.

We were serenaded by The Blue Method, a local soul funk band that is a favorite of Whitney's.  
After the first dance, the party got started

When Whitney is around, there is always dancing..

As the sun started to set, sparklers were handed out to guest to add to the magic of the night.

Maximus and Taintess,
  Thank you for inviting us to your special day and into your lives.  We feel so blessed to call you our friends.  We wish you more better than worse, more health than sickness and more riches than poor, but I know regardless of your situation, you will remain steadfast to each other.  For you have found a life companion in each other.

Love Always,
  JEGs and Lady Lumps

Friday, August 16, 2013

Take Two

Back in June I shared a mood board for our master bedroom.  I had two phases, the first being a general freshening up with paint and curtains.  Every time I sat down to blog about it, I stopped myself, and I couldn't figure out what was holding me back.  Until a couple weeks ago I realized what it was.

I hated the color.  

Hated it.  

I had chosen Benjamin Moore's Conventry Gray with the idea of going with a gray, blue and coral color scheme.  After the color was on the wall, it just felt too cold and sterile to me.  

I decided to start looking into the "greige" colors-- beige grays.   These are the colors I started flirting with
(This picture is really not a good representation of the colors.  If you are interested in their true tones, I would highly reccommend getting your own samples)

At first I was torn between the Revere Pewter and the Edgecomb Gray, however I felt like the former was too dark and the latter too light.  While I was flipping through the new Pottery Barn catalogue, I noticed wall color they used, SW Pediment, seemed like a nice mix of the two, while still being gray.

I've taken the day off from work and I'm repainting the bedroom again.  Here is hoping the second time is a charm.

The good news is I am still loving our bedspread that I scored for $60 at Marshalls.  It's a beautiful navy blue with a large floral print.

My favorite part is it is reversible. If I am feeling sassy, I can flip it over for a geometrical design.

It reminds me of this picture I snagged from Centsational Girl as an inspiration for the bedroom.

 So I am just going to file this whole process under "life lessons".  Sometimes you don't pick the right paint color the first time.

How about you?  Have you ever picked a color that made you cringe after wards?

Always & Forever,