Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I'm 25 and Feelin' Alive!

Last year was a great year; and I've got a feeling that it's going to another great year. Here's a re-cap of birthday 25 which was on Thursday, June 24.

Thursday morning kicked off with a delivery of the most gorgeous flower bouquet I've ever seen; complete with a purple vase. (Compliments of my love muffin.) They are still alive and smell like the sweet scents of Hawaii.

I actually had to take a the afternoon off and go home and chug a bottle of Miralax.  Yes.  My birthday wish was to go potty! Awesome, huh?  Sorry for TMI but I have been having digestive issues for a year now and for the past month, they have gotten quite bad.  So I went home and took care of the situation.  Tim was also home, so it was nice to lay around on the coach with him in between running to the toilet! Kind of comical if you ask me.  Again, sorry for TMI.   By the evening I was feeling better and actually went out for a fun birthday dinner with my best friend Jess and her boyfriend Jeff.  (They also live in the same apartment complex as Tim and I.)  It was a restaurant on a lake and there was a live band and lots of entertainment and people watching.  We had a great time and meal!  The birthday girl even got a complimentary dessert of choice - hot fudge brownie sundae! Yummo!

Friday I took the day off from work and spent it with my family on the lake. It was sunny and gorgeous!  We went for a long boat ride and soaked up some sunshine.  I also consumed an entire bottle of Red Cat wine on my own; so fabulous! I also spent some time with my grandparents; it was an all around great day.

The rest of the weekend was also nice. My parents had a tasty ice cream cake for me and other treats. Oh and Tim also gave me a beautiful diamond and sapphire necklace which I love.  He's a sweet boy, my Timmy.

So now I just have to get through this week because Saturday I have special guests arriving for a fun-filled Fourth of July on the lake! The same special guests came last Memorial Day.  Read about that visit here.

Happy Summer! I wish I was a teacher today. ;)

~Dining Diva

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Another Wonderful Wedding...

was had this past weekend.  One of my best friends for life, That's Sassy!, married the love of her life. I was so happy to be able to a part of her special day and be a bridesmaid. Sass looked gorgeous and the wedding and reception were both beautiful!  The rehersal dinner was also great - especially the location, scenery and delicious food! Now Sass will be leaving to move with her hubby to Texas because he's in the Air Force.  I'm going to miss her and our long walks and lunchtime chats.  But I'm also very excited for her! Congrats, That's Sassy!

Sunday was Father's Day and I spent it at my parent's house on the lake. It was a picture perfect, gorgeous day for the boat.  We had a great day together with a group of families that we're friends with.  Everyone has the same kind of boat - so we can all tie up together and chillax.  Very fun.  I should have worn sun screen -but the burn has left the building, and I finally have a summer tan!  My Dad is the greatest dad. I'm blessed with a wonderful family.

Monday was my Grammy and Grampy's 63rd wedding anniversary.

Tomorrow is my birthday and I'm excited! I can't believe I'm going to be 25! I feel like this year has flown by.  My 24th birthday was so special last year because of Tim.  He told me he loved me and we went golfing and went to my parent's house with friends and hit up the lake.  I'm going to work tomorrow but I took Friday off.  Tim's dad has open heart surgery last week - so he may be getting out of the hospital tomorrow.

Also, I just sat through my first (and hopefully last) earthquake here at my desk! It was pretty exciting.  And I went right to Twitter to confirm.  It's crazy that Twitter is where breaking news is at, way before CNN or MSNBC.

Have a great day!

~Dining Diva 

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What a Wedding!

That was my thought after attending wedding two out of eight (for the summer/fall) this past Saturday. There was a beautiful theme that was carried throughout the wedding brochures to the table tents to the display over the fireplace. I loved every detail.  Here were a few of my favorites in no particular order. (I wish I had photos to go along with this post to help you visualize).

1. The professionalism of the program hand-out at the wedding.  The font was fabulous and there was even a romantic poem on the back. 

2. Flowers along some of the pews down the aisle of the Church that matched the theme and the program hand-out.
3.  The couple's dog was outside at the end of the service and part of the bridal party line.  They love their doggy so much that the favor was a huge cut-out cookie that looked like the dog - and it was delicious!
4. Red velvet wedding cake with butter cream frosting
5. The reception was at a golf course.  When you entered the club house, there was a table that looked like grass.  On the grassy table were little black rocks.  The rocks had guests' names with corresponding table numbers.  I loved that detail and I'll be sure to keep the rock.
5. I liked the framed photo of the happy couple that was on display and was also the guest book.  I believe they'll hang it on the wall in their home.
6. The appetizers that were passed around before dinner began.  Jump shrimp and chicken skewers and other tasty treats.
7.The silky chair covers! They made the room look so elegant, although the bride said they were pretty expensive.  I think it was a great investment in their wedding.
8. The happy and in-love couple.  They were so sweet and walked around to all the tables to say thank you and ask how our meals were.  Then they danced the night away together.

This is a poorly written post and is lacking the details I wish I could convey to you because I was blown away at this wedding.  Plus, it was a family wedding, so it was great to see so many loved ones at a celebratory event and not a funeral (which is unfortunately, too often the case).

Wedding number three is this weekend and I am a bridesmaid.  I still haven't gotten my dress back from alterations - so I hope it fits tomorrow when I get it.

I'll be sure to fill you in on the wedding and hopefully have photos for you to see!

~Dining Diva

Friday, June 11, 2010

Birthday Coupons in the Mail

Not only are birthdays just plain fun and fabulous, but the amount of deep discount coupons that land in both my email inbox and snail-mail mailbox are appreciated!  Does anyone else get excited to open envelopes to find coupons?  The reason I started this post is because I just opened a bubbly-packed envelope from Anthropologie with the cutest thing enclosed.  It's thick, white card stock with a birthday candle necklace attached.  (There's also a 15% off coupon - woo hoo!)  Their packaging really stood out to me and I think it's just awesome.  Bonefish also won me over with their coupon for a complimentary Bang Bang Shrimp.  Yummo!

Now when they start sending bottles of wine in the mail to say, "Happy Birthday," then it's really good.

Just 13 more days until the big 2-5! But who is counting.

~Dining Diva

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Celebrity Sighting . .. sort of

So Adam Richman of "Man v. Food" has been in my city for the past few days and it has been pretty cool.  I've been working with the producers via email for the past few months; but it was really cool to physically watch some of the episode be taped last night.  Plus, Adam interviewed me! So who knows, I could be on the Travel Channel! :) That is pretty exciting, if I do say so myself. 

So I brought Tim and my friend Jess and her boyfriend Jeff with me to the taping last night.  We got our photo with Adam, and the person taking the photo said, "Say Man versus food!" - so I did.  I think he caught me in mid-sentence, so as Alan would say on "The Hangover," I look like a total 'tard.  So does Timmy.  lol (And I really don't like that word - but that movie is too freaking funny, so I had to use it!) Oh well - I hope I don't look so fat and ugly on TV (if they happen to use any of the interview...which who knows).  But I will totally be watching in September to see my city shine on "Man v. Food!"

This other picture is just so cute.  This little boy is a huge fan of the show and had come prepared with a letter he wrote to Adam back in May.  Adam signed it.  Little boy was so very excited!

~ Dining Diva

Monday, June 7, 2010

30 Years of Bliss; Happy Anniversary!

Today is my parent's 30th wedding anniversary.  That's pretty awesome if I do say so myself.  They are truly a wonderful example of a great marriage.  Even today, they are best friends and are always enjoying life together.  They have created a beautiful life and I'm so blessed to be their daughter.  They are the greatest parents on earth.

Friday night my sister and I took Mom and Dad out to dinner at a fabulous Italian restaurant.  It was really nice.  Our boys came too.  We're also getting them Adirondack chairs, but they have yet to arrive.  I think they'll look really nice on the lake.

Yesterday Mom, Dad, Tara and Bella (little doggy) came over to our new apartment.  We grilled hot dogs and I made amazing brownies (2.5 boxes combined to a fudge-filled heaven of a dessert).  It was a great day and Bella loved laying on top of our heads on our coach. I wish I had taken photos of her.

Tim surprised me with a beautiful hanging basket hanging from our porch when I got home from work and running today.  I have been talking about one, but we didn't have a hook on our porch, plus we're on the top floor and I was arrived it would blow off the porch with a strong wind.  It looks beautiful! 

Wedding #2 this weekend.  It's a family wedding, so I'm looking forward to it!

Happy Monday - Anyone going to watch the Bachelorette?  Is it just me or does anyone else really not like Ali?

~Dining Diva

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Amazing Photos from Colorado

Roaming the Rockies

.   .   .was amazing!!! I had the best week in Colorado.  Better that I even expected.  I have so many fabulous photos to share.  They'll come in another post.

 I stayed at the St. Regis Hotel in Aspen and it was out of this world, wonderful.  I loved the nightly bedroom turn-downs, complete with calm music playing on the Bose speaker, water, chocolate, a warm bathrobe, slippers, and a humidifier (for the dry air).  The fresh flowers and huge shower head in the marble bathroom were just a few more perks.  The customer service was unbelievable, beginning with check-in.  "Would you like room service to come in the morning or afternoon?" "What newspapers would you like to receive?" The life of luxury is fabulous.  I can't believe people actually stay there during peak season and pay close to $2,000 a night for the room I was in!  Craziness. The conference I was attending was also fantastic with amazing women.  I had a great time and learned so much.  How many of you are using Foursquare?

Tim flew into Denver towards the end of the week, got a rental car, and drove four hours up to Aspen to meet me.  He stayed in my sassy room for the night and then we spent the next day together exploring Aspen. Then we took the Scenic Bypass to Denver.  That was the most beautiful and amazingly scenic drive I've ever experienced.  Just wait until I post pictures.  It looks like I edited the photos and dropped myself into them.  If you haven't been up in the mountains of Colorado, I suggest you put it on your to-do list.  And the heat was so nice! I was at the top of a mountain wearing shorts and flip-flops, standing in a pile of snow, with the sun and blue sky shining on me.  Loved it!

We spent Memorial Day weekend in Denver at his friend's condo in the downtown area.  It was gorgeous.  We had a lot of fun - went to the Denver Botanical Gardens, a Rockies game, partied downtown, and went to the Rocky Mountain National Park and to Boulder.  I loved everything.  When we went out downtown, my friend from my hometown met up with us.  She moved to Denver after college graduation.  Once "Like A Prayer" came on speakers - we were up and dancing the night away.  (Except for when I had to take breathers, because let me tell you, the elevation makes you get out of breath like that! It was crazy.)

So stay tuned for photos.

And just for the record, I love living with  my love muffin.  I've never been happier. And I talked with his sister about living with him (because she thinks he should have proposed to me before moving in together).  But I think she understands now and isn't upset with us (which was my concern). 

I think our relationship is wonderful and I'm confident that it's moving in the right direction and everything will just fall into place.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful (and short) week!

~Dining Diva

P.S. It's my parent's 30th anniversary this weekend and I want to make a fabulous dessert.  Suggestions and recipes are welcome!