Pinterest: Strawberry Shortcake Kebobs
When you think of Phoenix, a lush, green garden isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. That’s why when I was invited to a Saturday afternoon garden party I just had to go! Of course, my mama always taught me to bring something when I’m invited to a friend’s house and I had been seeing these Strawberry Shortcake Kebobs all over Pinterest. I thought they would be the perfect treat for the garden party.
They were super easy to make, too, which is a plus. They were a huge hit at the party and we discussed other ways to make them even easier and more versatile, like using store bought pound cake, or angel food cake or even soft sugar cookies instead of biscuit rounds. Next time I might even drizzle the kebobs with melted chocolate!
It’s been a whirlwind first three months of 2013! I’ve either been traveleing or we’ve had company staying with us at Camp Stella. I’m definitely not complaining, it’s been a delight to be so busy with awesome stuff. But as life happens, things tend to get neglected… the kitchen floors, books I’m reading, this space here along with some future online projects that I’m working on. I did have a chance to do a little quilting when I joined a quilt square bee on Flickr. These are pretty cool groups if you are a quilter and are looking to challenge your skill-set. Some are set up where you choose a square and make the same square for the number of people in your “hive” using the color palette they’ve requested. I am in a bee like that and for the first quarter, I made granny squares for them. Here they all are right before I shipped them:
Then I made one for myself in my own color palette:
With any luck, I’ll receive 6 squares in my color palette that can be used to make a quilt. You can join as many hives as you like and each hive refreshes every three months. I think I’ll keep the same color palette for the next quarter giving me 12 of the same color-themed squares plus the two that I make.
If you are interested in joining a quilting bee, you can read about them and sign up here: Quilting Bees
Merry Christmas from the Joneses
It’s holiday card season and how lucky am I that this lovely couple asked me to take photos for their Christmas cards! We spent some time in downtown historic Gilbert enjoying the gorgeous weather. I brought a few Christmas-y props and just let them play and have a good time with each other. Thanks Adrienne and Mike for being good sports and making this shoot so easy!
Live: Alanis Morissette @ Comerica Theater
I spent Thursday night standing in the Pit in front of the stage at the Comerica Theater for the Alanis Morissette concert. I’ve seen her multiple times in the past and I was happy to purchase a ticket when her Phoenix show was announced. She has a new album out (Havoc and Bright Lights
) and though she sprinkled her setlist with new songs, the crowd was clearly there for the hits. Strutting and prowling her way around the stage, Alanis belted out her hits whipping her hair back and forth and growling her way through her more popular “angry songs.” Though she seemed a little tired at the beginning of the show, she was happy and relaxed if not a bit reserved. I was thrilled that she did a few of my personal favorites like “All I Really Want” and “So Pure” Her first encore was a quieter, acoustic set with her band upfront, closer to the edge of the stage with Alanis perched on a stool. She sang three songs before leaving the stage and returning again for the final encore of the hit Thank U. Overall it was a great show despite standing in beer soaked shoes all night. Note to Drunk Girl: You can’t jump up and down with a full cup of beer without pissing off people around you.
“I Remain” (segue 1).
“All I Really Want.”
“Head Over Feet.”
“I Remain” (segue 2).
“You Oughta Know.”
“Hand in My Pocket.”
Have you heard of Movember? I hadn’t until earlier this year. It’s a movement of men who spend November growing mustaches to bring awareness to prostate cancer. It’ll be no surprise that my office is participating. We had a contest for our team name complete with mustache-themed prizes and I was able to score free hot foam, straight-razor shaves for the guys. The girls, not wanting to be left out of the fun, had a chance to show off their mustaches when I did a recent portrait photoshoot for our new and improved company website. Check them out, I think they are so much fun and full of amazing personality!
The Last of the Mustachicians – Mo Sistas:
One of the funniest things Cathy and I did in London was get a pedicure. But not just any kind of pedicure… a fish pedicure. We were checking out the antique stalls on Portobello Road and were both thinking that a drink and a little sit down to rest our feet sounded like a good idea. I’m not sure which of us spotted the Coco Nail Bar first but when I saw Cathy’s expression when she saw the fish tanks I knew we were in for a treat.
The premise is that you dip your feet into a shallow tank of water filled with “doctor fish” and they eat off the dead skin. The result is feet as smooth as a baby’s bottom feet.
This is the view when you are sitting with your feet in the water. The fish nibble at your soles, heels, between your toes, and the tops of your feet. It doesn’t hurt but it does tickle. Cathy had a harder time keeping her feet in the water. We thought maybe a cocktail might help.
People off the street popped in to ask us what we were doing and how it felt. A lot of guys were super curious and their ladies looked disgusted. I say if you have the chance, do it. You might LOVE it!
Have you heard of CLICK magazine? It’s a new bimonthly print magazine from Clickin Moms.
CLICK’s creative team includes Cameron Bishopp, former chief editor for Professional Photographer magazine and Lisa Thé, previously art director for Martha Stewart Weddings & Outside magazines and the first issue looks amazing! It features one of my favorite lifestyle photographers, Tara Whitney. Oh what I wouldn’t give to spend an hour with Tara just following her around watching her work. That didn’t sound creepy at all.
In any event, CLICK is offering 50% off subscriptions (digital and print) for a limited time. Sign up here to get first dibs on the premiere issue! I’m signing up to get mine now!
A few weeks ago, my friend Barbara and I met for lunch and a movie. We both watch the PBS show Check Please, Arizona and Gallo Blanco was one of the featured restaurants. Since it is located near the theater where we planned to go to the movies, it was a no-brainer to check it out for lunch.
Located just inside the Clarendon Hotel, Gallo Blanco’s bright decor is very eclectic. Lots of funky colorful art and cool mini art installations decorate the walls. They have a bar and a patio seating and the interior of the restaurant is airy and light with lots of windows.
Barbara ordered one of their spicy Bloody Mary’s and I was impressed with the garnishes!
We ordered chips and the loveliest guacamole to start. There were bits of orange and lime in the citrusy dip that made it refreshing and light.
We also wanted to try the Elote Callejero- grilled corn w/ Cotija cheese and smoked Paprika. It did not disappoint.
We opted for an assortment of tacos and some herbed jasmine rice as our main course. I really wish I had more than just my iPhone to capture the meal… the colors were just gorgeous!
If you’re in the area, give Gallo Blanco a try. Your tastebuds will thank you!
401 West Clarendon Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85013
Birthday Scavenger Hunt/Surprise Party
So this happened the Wednesday before my 40th birthday:
I was supposed to have a meeting at 4:30 last Wednesday afternoon, but when I arrived to the meeting spot, this note was there. I was cracking up. After reading the note, I knew right away that the next location was the recently closed Honey Bear’s restaurant right across the street from my office. My friend Nicci decided to come with me and help me find the rest of the clues.
This is what I found at Honey Bear’s:
Off to Walmart we went where I picked up a pack of orange Tic-tacs (note: they don’t taste as good as I remember)
Once I made my purchase, I texted Paul to let him know that I was ready for my next clue:
It’s clear that my co-workers can pull a fast one like the best of them. I honestly thought someone went into my car and hid a clue without me knowing. Turns out, sneaky Nicci came along for the ride to plant the clue. I will never be a detective.
The next clue instructed me to drive to the Circle K (not the Square J or Triangle L) and make a phone call using the payphone. There was an envelope with $5 and $1 in quarters. I was intrigued and grossed out all at once.
I called the number and someone with a crazy voice answered and instructed me to go inside, but a 40 oz. beer and the cashier would hand me the next clue. (Turns out it was our newest coworker, Abby, who altered her voice for the phone call.)
I have never, ever, in my life, bought a forty, so Nicci suggested Micky’s. Here I am waiting to buy my beer.
The next clue sent me to IKEA to pick up a tape measure. When we got back to my car, the final clue was taped to my window:
Finally, the end point was revealed: My Wine Cellar in Tempe. When we got there, I was led to a table with co-workers, their spouses, and my guy. They decorated the table with flowers, balloons, and cupcakes. Someone ordered a glass of bubbly champagne for me and I relayed the story of my adventure.
Big thanks to db, Paul, Nicci, Summer, Sheridan, Mackenzie, Adrienne, Mike, Julie, Johnny, Criselda, and Abby. It was a huge surprise and so much fun!
5th and Wine
My guy took me to a great restaurant for my birthday dinner: 5th and wine. Located in Old Town Scottsdale, it’s the perfect place for a casual dinner that feels and tastes luxurious without breaking the bank. We started with the roasted olives and two types of bruschetta- classic tomato, basil, mozzarella and brie, apple, fig. They were both unbelievable. I might have to start making brie-apple-fig sandwiches for lunch.
For my main course, I ordered the hangar steak. It comes with fries, but I asked to substitute the fingerling potatoes. I was not disappointed. They were thinly sliced into “chips” and braised with fresh sage and thyme. The hangar steak was juicy and cooked perfectly. I had a glass of bubbly Prosecco with it.
For dessert, we decided to splurge on the chocolate mousse. It was light, chocolatey and did not have any bits of chocolate chips or nuts in it, which, in my opinion, ruins the smoothness of the mousse. I might’ve spoon-wrestled my guy for the last bite.
We are already planning a reason to go back to 5th and Wine. We’ve heard they have a great happy hour and there is often live music out on the patio. Now that it’s starting to cool off that might be how we’ll spend some fall Saturday evenings.
5th and Wine
7501 East 5th Ave