I don’t want our wedding to look like anyone else’s. Is that so much to ask? I don’t think so.

I really want to make a statement on the tables and so I decided a while back that I wanted the napkin to have a pretty print on it. Do you know how hard it is to find printed rental napkins in my color scheme that are exactly what I want? Harder than it should. Actually, impossible.

Anyway, I finally convinced my mom that I could find a fabric cheap enough that we could get napkins made for the same price as renting would be…AND we could keep some and sell the rest after.

This way I got a gorgeous fabric that was exactly what I wanted, and no one else could  possible have it!

But in my fruitless search for the perfect napkin and tablecloth, I came across this one and showed it to Nate:


Have I mentioned that Nate LOVES dinosaurs?

This was the IM conversation that ensued:

Nate:  oh my god
me:  we could do it just for our table
tell you what
we’ll make our first child’s bday a dino theme
Nate:  obviously
im gonna groom them
to become a paleontologist
me:  haha
Nate:  and then they will create the first real jurassic park
me:  as long as they make enough money to support their folks
Nate: well if my son/daughter creates the first real jurassic park that will be our family business
i’ll work there
and with any luck, at a ripe old age, be eaten by a dinosaur
by far the way i want to go

So there you have it. Nate’s chosen way to go is death by dinosaur. Probably not a bad way, in fact, assuming there isn’t too much chewing involved.

That also solves the mystery of who on earth would rent dinosaur tablecloths. But luckily Nate is not involved in making wedding-related decor decisions, or it would be a dino-themed wedding…and he’d probably serve these ribs.

These aren’t dinosaur ribs, but they’d certainly go with a paleontology-themed event. And I can’t say I’d be upset if someone served them to me.

Unfortunately, the only photo I have to prove I made these ribs is one from my iphone, since Nate somehow deleted the others before I got them off the camera.

We, unfortunately, don’t have a grill, but this is better than ribs you could ever make on a grill. Yeah, take that, grill!

You give them a quick boil beforehand and then shove them in the oven for an hour and a half.

I’m a fan of saucy, succulent meat. I know this is definitely possible on the grill, but I hate dry things. These ribs get braised in the oven, mixing with the homemade tangy bbq sauce you add, creating their own, absolutely delicious sauce. I could eat it with a spoon.

Even if you have a grill, you NEED to make these this summer.

I served it up with some baked beans and corn on the cob. Felt like summer for sure!

Too bad the caterer doesn’t offer them….

Oh and here’s another photo for you since I don’t have any more of the ribs. Here’s the ring bearer pillow I made for the wedding :)

burlap ring pillow


Saucy Country-Style Oven Ribs

from Gourmet 

Print this recipe!

serves 6-8

4 lb boneless country-style pork ribs
1 large onion, finely chopped (2 cups)
4 garlic cloves, minced (2 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups ketchup (12 oz)
2/3 cup honey
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon dry mustard
2 teaspoons drained bottled horseradish
1 teaspoon black pepper
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.

Put ribs in a 6- to 8-quart pot and cover with water by two inches. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, skimming froth, 30 minutes (I only cook for 15 and it’s completely fine).

Meanwhile, cook onion and garlic in oil in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 15 minutes.

Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes.

Drain pork in a colander and pat dry, then arrange in 1 layer using tongs in a 13- by 9-inch baking dish. Pour sauce over pork to coat evenly, then cover dish tightly with foil.

Bake 1 hour, then remove foil and carefully turn pork over with tongs and cook, uncovered, until very tender, about 30 minutes. Skim fat from sauce if desired.

(**note that I don’t normally cut the ribs apart before cooking as in the above pic, but that’s how this particular batch came. Usually I put the whole rack in the pan in one long piece, only cutting off the ribs that don’t fit the length and putting them along the side)

Broccoli Salad

This weather is disgusting.

When you wake up it’s already 80 degrees out, and by noon it’s 90. It just doesn’t feel right turning on the oven to cook. So it’s good to have a bunch of no-cook, cold, fresh salad recipes in your recipe box.

Salsa and tabouli are both great for this purpose, and this recipe is another good one.

Broccoli Salad

You need to make this a day ahead to give the broccoli time to marinate and soften. I didn’t realize this when I was making the recipe, so I blanched it as a shortcut. I recommend following the directions though :)

On a side note, did you know that sometimes pignoli nuts can cause you to have a bitter taste in your mouth for days? Yeah, I didn’t either until it happened to me. It’s not ALL pignoli nuts, but apparently some are affected.

I  also don’ t know if it only affects some people (since Nate didn’t seem to notice it) or if I’m just hyper aware of tastes, but it was disgusting. All food tasted bad/bitter until it wore off several days later. It probably didn’t help that I continued to eat this for 3 days until I realized that the pignoli nuts were the cause. Don’t let that this stop you from making this recipe, and I hope I haven’t in any way affected your love of these tasty little seeds.

On another note, I worked on more wedding crafts this weekend! I have to say they came out super cute…here’s a sneak peak.

I also had my wedding hair trial appointment today. I don’t know what I want to do! I hate making decisions.

Nate is pretty set on having me wear my hair down, and since he hasn’t asked for much I feel like I should honor his request. i know I want it off my face though, so maybe some sort of half up, half down thing? I think I want some loose waves.

The hairdresser showed me a few options. I defintely don’t want anything complex…I’m a simple girl.

Broccoli Salad


Cold Broccoli Salad

From mom’s recipe box (original source unknown)

Print this recipe!

Serves 6

1 head broccoli, cut in 1″ pieces
1/2 cup sliced black olives
4 thin-sliced radishes
1/4 cup pignoli nuts
1/2 cup olive oil
3 Tbsp wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
tomato wedges for garnish

Soak broccoli in salted water for 10-15 min. Drain.

Add olives, nuts.

Combine oil, vinegar, and seasonings to make dressing.

Marinate broccoli for five or more hours, chilled.

Add rest of ingredients before serving.

02. August 2011 · 7 comments · Categories: crafts · Tags: ,

If you’ve never heard of Pinterest, you’re missing out. I recently discovered it, though I don’t remember where and I’m constantly stumbling across it all over the interwebs. From the Pinterest website:

“Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.

Best of all, you can browse pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.”

It’s really a pretty cool site. Anyway, as I mention in my About Me, my interests do not lie solely in the culinary field. I love being crafty, both through painting, crocheting, and other various ways. One of my favorite things to do, when I have time, is to reproduce something I saw in a store for cheaper, or to create something I want that I can’t find in a store. This post is about the latter.

I’ve been wanting something to hold all my jewelry. I mean I don’t have that much, but I’m the kind of person that wears the same earrings, necklace and bracelets every day because I’m too lazy too switch (yep, I wear them in the shower and to bed too). But  sometimes when I head to work, I want to look a little nicer. However, with all my jewelry shoved in a case in my closet where I can’t see what I have, and with no counter space for a standing jewelry holder, I had to take matters into my own hands! I needed to make a jewelry holder that would hang on a wall…

I had seen a few ideas on Pinterest that caught my attention:

Inspiration #1Inspiration #2Inspiration #3

And so I got to work on my own little project. I knew that while I liked the idea of all three inspiration pieces, I needed mine to combine all parts. I wanted to interior of the frame to be able to hold earrings, and I pictured the necklaces hanging on the sides. I liked inspiration #3, but I felt it would hang too low if the necklaces were below so I’d put the hooks on the side. Also, I liked the fine mesh in #2 because it would give more options for where to hang things. So I started by finding a disgusting old wooden frame from my grandma’s. This isn’t the frame I used, because I forgot to take a before, but this was a similar one I found at grandma’s, since I wasn’t sure which would be better at the time:

I know, ugly, right?? I knew the frame needed to be real wood and have a thick side, so I would be able to screw the necklace hooks in. The frame I found had glass on it and something inside, both of which I promptly removed. I had an idea that I wanted this to look rustic and whitewashed. I took some white paint I had laying around and I got one of those foam brushes wet but squeezed out most of the water. I painted the whole frame in a watered down white, wiping down with a paper towel to keep the application light. Next, I bought some thin wire mesh and some small hooks at an art supply store. I cut the mesh to size and fit it in the back of the frame and secured with large metal tacks. I then screwed the hooks into either side, staggering them left and right so that the necklaces wouldn’t hang on each other.

Slightly staggered hooks to prevent necklaces from hanging on top of each other.

In the end, I was seriously impressed with my creation (if I don’t say so myself). In fact, I’m considereing making a few more and selling them on etsy…when i get some free time.

This whole craft project is part of the Pinterest Challenge, a nifty little idea I saw on the Young House Love site. Be sure to check out the hosts of this fun little idea: Sherry’sKatie’sEmily’s and Lana’s projects. Thanks for organizing the challenge, ladies! Can’t wait to see what everyone else came up with!