Wedding Wednesday: Beachy Wedding Cake

A shot of the cute beachy cake from a wedding I recently attended. You may remember another memorable beach cake from a shower held in honor of the same bride.

Dear Abby....

A reader sent this to us and we just had to share....

DEAR ABBY: A friend and I attended a bridal shower of a friend's daughter. After the young woman opened her gifts, we were escorted to another room where blank note cards were strewn on a coffee table, surrounded by envelopes and stamps. The hostess instructed us to write on these folded cards our names and what we had given the bride-to-be.
The hostess told us to write: "Dear Mary (using our own names, of course), Thank you for the nice afghan" (or whatever we had given), and place the card in one of the envelopes. We were then told to address and stamp the envelopes, but not to seal them so (I assume) the "too busy" bride-to-be could sign her name.
As I foolishly followed these ridiculous instructions, I was tempted to thank myself for the 30-minute drive I had made in each direction to purchase a gift, and the 45-minute drive I made to attend the shower.
How stupid are we going to feel when the "thank-yous," in our own handwriting, show up in the mail? My son says I should refuse the letter.
And do you want to know the "topper"? I asked the bride-to-be before leaving when her wedding was. Get this -- it's in two days. I am not even invited to the wedding!
What's wrong with this generation? Please shed some light on this. Thanks, Abby. I feel better now that I've vented -- stupid, but better. -- FEELING USED IN KANSAS

DEAR FEELING USED: Nothing is wrong with "this generation." What you have described is a family that never learned basic good manners. Rather than an "afghan" -- or whatever your gift was -- the bride-to-be would have been better served to have received a book on etiquette.

Happy Spring Friday from New York!

Roof top garden and flowers found on the Upper West Side:

Wedding Wednesday and Earth Day Special

Today I read about a company called The Special E that answers the question of how to dispose of leftovers from parties in way that can help both the needy and the earth. The program is really amazing, and I encourage all of you to check out the website (click on the logo to be directed to the site). Their services are available in 30 metro areas. They will take uneaten food, leftovers, candles, flowers, and the list goes on and on.

Question of the Day

Do you look forward to work? Will you continue to work after you start a family? If you stay home with children now, do you ever miss work?

Mark your Calendars!

My favorite holidays of the year are pretty untraditional. I love Cinco de Mayo, Independence Day, St. Patrick’s Day, etc. And I really love Ben and Jerry’s Free Cone Day! This holiday usually coincides with Earth Day (which is this coming Tuesday, April 22nd), but this year it falls on the 30th anniversary of Ben and Jerry’s: April 29th.

Mark your calendars!

Southern Summer Cocktails

With the temperature approaching the 80s this weekend in Virginia, I am definitely thinking about summertime and envisioning a little back-deck-sitting while sipping a cold cocktail.

I recently came across
this book in Barnes and Noble; it has recipes for everything from a simple Sangria to the classic Mint Julep. Check it out for ideas on something to whip up in your cocktail shaker for this weekend!

Pretty Blog

Hi everyone,

We are trying to make our blog prettier, but are a bit stumped about how to do this. We don't want to do anything complicated- just move out of the blogger standard formatting. Does anyone have any suggestions for easy programs to use, or even a blog designer who is affordable (maybe a high school or college friend who does this in their spare time!)?

Thanks so much!

Farrell and Lauren

Save the Save the Dates?

A reader wrote in to let us know she had received a save the date for a friend’s child’s first birthday party in the mail. It was a photo save the date with a picture of the baby, the date of the party (just under 3 months away), and that was it – no details on location, etc.

She is wondering….does a child’s first birthday really warrant a formal save the date, or should those be saved for occasions more like weddings? How “important” must an event be to be worthy of receiving a save the date in your mailbox?



Found the apartment...more to follow. However, my first purchase will be from...Pottery Barn. (I know, I know. But only a rug.) - LG

Keeping the Bubbles

I have heard many suggestions for keeping a bottle of champagne or prosecco bubbly in your fridge for a few days after opening, including dropped the handle of a metal spoon down the mouth of the bottle.

However, yesterday, I learned a new one while reading this article in Cooking Light. Apparently, adding a fresh raisin to the bottle a few moments before pouring will instantly revive the bubbles. I haven’t tried this yet, but fully intend to.

Does anyone else have any fun suggestions for prolonging the freshness of opened champagne?

Home Sweet Home

Last week MMM posted pictures of her apartment. I was very impressed by the little touches she has added to remind her of home. What are your favorite ways to express your roots if you live outside of the region where you were raised? - LG

Outside the Barn

When I wrote about Pottery Barn the other day, I received a lot of feedback from readers about alternative furniture sources. One reader emailed and told me about Home Decorators. This site features furniture that seems to be one step up from Ikea, with a lot more variety. Pictured above is a sideboard that could be used in so many different ways. The price? From $269 to $469 depending on size. -LG

Wedding Wednesday: Beachy Pink Shower

I recently helped throw a bridal shower for one of my closest friend’s sisters, hosted at my parents’ home. The color of the day was pink, with lots of beachy inspirations, to go along with the wedding, which features an outdoor ceremony in the sand dunes.

On the menu:
Pink Rose Punch
Iced Tea
Hummus, Crudite, and Pita Chips
Virginia Ham and Swiss Biscuits with Poppyseed Spread
Cocktail Meatballs (a favorite of the bride)
Brie and Grapes
Chicken Salad on miniature rolls
Greek Salad Skewers (my favorite)
Hot Crab Dip
Mini Carrot Cake Muffins with Cream Cheese Frosting
Toffee Almond Brownies
Cake with Raspberry Filling

Here’s a snapshot. Check out the creative cake a family friend made to go along with the bride’s beach theme.