Weekend of Crazy

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This weekend was Joshua’s first birthday, plus we had an engagement party for my sister and her fiance! So in the spirit of old-school blogging, here’s a bunch of random pictures and stuff about our weekend.

It really started Thursday afternoon. My in-laws were at our apartment when I got home with the kids from picking Libbie up from pre-school. They quickly whisked Libbie and David away to their hotel for swimming, dinner, and to stay the night. Mr. V and I ONLY HAD JOSHUA. ALL NIGHT. IT WAS SO QUIET.

Friday my MIL and I entertained the wee ones and I started cooking for the engagement party. (OK, mostly my MIL played with them. I cooked a little and took a long nap.)

Friday afternoon my parents and my aunt and uncle came in. My in-laws baby-sat so Mr. V and I could go out for a nice (CHILDLESS!!) dinner with my parents, my aunt and uncle, and my sister and her fiance. We went to Elemental on Chattanooga North Shore.

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The ladies felt they must, of course, pose with this giant tractor inside the restaurant.

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My chicken with chow chow and roasted veggies.

Saturday was spent prepping for the big Engagement Party, where my parents met my sister’s fiance’s parents and some of his extended family. I pretty much went insane prepping but enjoyed it immensely once it was ready! (I wish I knew how to entertain without going cuckoo. Some of the issue was that we had it in a room in the next building with no oven or fridge. But I always get stressed when entertaining.)

Oh, did I mention that my sister eats gluten free? So everything I made I had to carefully watch ingredients.

Menu

Appetizer: pickles, black olives, tortilla chips with Whole Foods guacamole, salsa, and pimiento cheese dip

  • Salad with shredded carrots, bell peppers, and tomatoes
  • Pioneer Woman beef brisket (made with LaChoy soy sauce, which is GF) – a HUGE hit!
  • Mashed potato bar with cheese, bacon, green onions, and sour cream – Aunt Jennie (foodie and also photographer of the iPhone here!) made the mashed potatoes super delicious, with tons of butter and heavy cream. Perfect!
  • Carla Hall’s Broccoli Gratin – I don’t think anyone really liked these. I think it might have been due to my rather enthusiastic gruyere (from Whole Foods). If I made this again, I would just mix cheddar cheese in with the cream sauce, then sprinkle just a little cheese and bread crumbs on top and bake. I used Glutino All-Purpose flour and breadcrumbs.
  • Jalapeno Creamed Corn – I need to make this about five times as often. It is incredibly good. Used the Glutino flour here, also.
  • Crustless Mixed Berry Custard Pie – I wasn’t crazy about this (Glutino flour here, too), but it was nice for a gluten-free dessert, I think! The flour felt a little grainy for me, but maybe a different GF flour would work better, like a tiny bit of coconut. The custard set nicely.

Happy couple! (from Friday night)

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And then, after all that, Joshua’s first birthday was Sunday!!

Our family went to our church on Sunday morning, then to a Mexican restaurant with everyone for lunch. After naps, we celebrated with presents and this monkey cake!

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Mud Pie Birthday Boy Shortalls

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monkey cake with cocoa krispies monkey face cake

Joshua dug right in, of course. I don’t think his sweet tooth is as bad as David’s, but he does enjoy sweets and loved his cake. I didn’t take a picture of him covered in chocolate, but rest assured, he was!

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And then after all that, I went with my parents and aunt and uncle to have very late tapas at Terra Nostra, which was fantastic!

It was a wonderful, insane weekend. But we’re always glad to be surrounded by loving family and to have things to celebrate!

8 thoughts on “Weekend of Crazy

  1. That brisket is to die for, isn’t it? And really, except for the time involved, simple to make. Everything looks wonderful!

    At long last I have the supplies to mail the little sir’s quilt. I’m hoping to actually get it in the mail at the 2/7 post office on Sunday; I’ll let you know exactly when it goes out and when to expect it. It’s really more of a one-year-old kind of quilt, anyway, which you will understand when you see it.

    • Yes, we LOVED the brisket!! I’ve made it once before but I didn’t remember how good it was.

      Thank you so much for the quilt, sweet one! I know we will treasure it.

  2. WOW…insane Jessie!! & i too get all stressed out over parties that i am hosting…in charge of food, just about EVERYTHING..including the times i open my mouth and say “I’LL DO IT”..ugh!! anyway..it looked like a fab-o time so kuddos!! cant believe Joshua is 1!!! it has been a yr yet…SERIOUSLY!!!

    • I love to host and yet hosting makes me insane. I think I need to read Shauna Niequist’s Bread and Wine again … and work on keeping my house in better shape. (Always, always.) No, I can’t believe he’s 1 either!!

  3. Hi, Jessie! I’m one of Jennie’s fans, so I popped over after reading your guest post at her blog. I enjoyed reading your account (and hers) of the whole tablescaping for dummies and also your blog post about the entire weekend. I enjoyed your tablescape and your menu. It sounds like y’all had a wonderful time! Love the tractor picture, too. 😉 I’m following you on twitter now (Kim @ Curtain Queen). Maybe tomorrow will begin a calmer weekend for your family.

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