Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Birthday Beach Weekend and Reba!!

Birthdays are a time to celebrate and while I love a low key dinner with family and friends every now and then, I also love to go all out and plan for a trip. This was a mini staycation as we frequent Clearwater Beach for dinner and beach days throughout the year since it's only about 20 minutes from us but staying there is the best of both worlds. We're locals that can live like a tourist for a few days.

Now, I always want to give a party favor and putting these together was so fun! I got to pick out the perfect combo for each of my friends and sister and they loved them, of course! I found a beach towel for each of the girls at various stores but TJ Maxx has some real winners, the cute water bottles came from Walmart and threw in some Birthday Cake Chapstick and spray sunscreen.

Friday night I had it all planned out that we'd do dinner at South Beach Frenchy's (we usually go to Rockaway on the beach, Dunedin Causeway Outpost or Saltwater which I lovingly refer to as the back road Frenchy's) since none of us had ever eaten at that location. While we were there the girls learned about the Frenchy's passport where you get a specialty drink at each of the 4 Frenchy's on Clearwater Beach and at the end you get a commemorative tank top with champion on it, yes please. Since they were each up for it and I had been wanting to do it we decided to complete it Friday night and what a way to start the weekend!!

We finished around 10:00 and ended up back in the room early, because we're old, duh.

Saturday, I wanted to try out a donut shop The Donut Experiment where you get to create your own. They were fresh, but just ok, you only get to choose one frosting and one topping...I've had better, just not always fresh. I've also had Mini Doughnut Factory since then and it's going to be hard to top that!

Saturday during the day was beach time. It was a super cold weekend for us and the temperature on the sand was at least 10 degrees cooler in the shade so we all kept our cover ups on and sat partially in the sun to stay warm, lol.

Saturday evening I had reservations at Marina Cantina that I wanted the family and friends to try out. I had booked us on the roof since that's what the tourists do and boy was it cold. They had heaters and blankets so it wasn't too bad, but still. Come on Florida, what's with the weather?!

Sunday we dropped off my friend that had a trek back to Jacksonville and three of us headed down to Indian Rocks Beach for P.J.'s Oyster Bar but sadly they were closed on Monday so we tried out Lulu's Oyster bar where P.J.'s used to be and while it was good, Kim said it wasn't as good as she remembered P.J.'s being.

Sunday night was all about Reba at the Strawberry festival. We had great seats and I couldn't believe I was finally seeing Reba in person. I have loved her music and watched every episode of her TV show, so I'm glad I got to check her off the list. Apparently my family can't go to the Strawberry Festival without also getting a strawberry shortcake. me, I'm usually there for the music, lol!

I returned to work and had birthday cake, breakfast and just a lot of fanfare as we have a few March birthdays in our department, so all was fun and games for a couple weeks, lol.

All in all, it was one of my favorite Birthday celebrations so far!

How do you do Birthdays?

Monday, April 23, 2018

BBQ Bash and Weekend Recap

Happy Monday, Friends!!

I am exhausted and so glad I have a couple days I get to sleep in this week. We spent the last couple weeks planning a BBQ for my sister who is going to Haiti for 5 weeks. She'll be "interning" with a missionary family that's been there for a few years and one of her key parts is setting up a baking school/bakery to work with the local women. Since she'll be working with food, that's been one of her main fundraisers as well, so a BBQ with family and friends sounded like a good idea. God is good and she raised almost everything she needed well ahead of her June deadline so now what she raises can go toward supplies and setting up the bakery. He also kept the rain away until we had everything back in the house!!!

Invitations / Flyers
I looked on stock photo websites to see what they had available because I had some credits and after seeing what they did I decided to make my own to their likeness and use Vecteezy graphics like the pig!

Location, location, location
Since we were inviting a lot more than a typical BBQ we went ahead and booked a shelter at one of our local parks. We have several throughout our County but because we had people coming from all over we wanted one that was as close to centrally located as we could get with only scheduling this a month out.

We found all of the d├ęcor at Walmart and the Dollar Tree! We figured we wouldn't be able to find the table cloths anywhere but Amazon or Party City and were shocked when The Dollar Tree had exactly what we were looking for. I wanted to order this pig off Pier 1 but found this cute little pig in their Seasonal party stuff at a Super Walmart. Other than the flowers, we also had wet wipes, paper towels and salt/pepper packets at each table.

We know not everyone likes pig but we wanted to keep thing super simple so we didn't offer grilled meat or chicken. We did make a side of baked beans vegetarian so some of my sister's friends could enjoy a plate of goodies as well. The drink idea came from Pinterest, of course. The lemonade was super easy, just empty enough of the jug so it's not spilling out the spout and dump in a whole container of lemonade powder. For the tea we emptied a water jug into glass containers and made sun tea then poured them back in via a pitcher.

We almost didn't get any of these pictures, guys! After we had everyone served and were cleaning up I was like...did anybody take pics?! Mom and I snapped a few shots before everything went away and I'm so glad my brain was able to remember that we needed to document the weekend.

The rest of the weekend was really spent getting ready for this. Two days of go, go really tired us out. I'm definitely ready for my vacation this weekend!!

Linking up with Biana!

How was your weekend?!

Friday, April 20, 2018

February and March 2018 Favorites

Happy Friday, Friends!!

Since I missed a couple months, I thought I'd combine them. The problem with not planning is I tend to forget something was my favorite until I use it again.

A metal hand-held juice press for all the lemons and limes I flavor my water or tea with or even when I'm making margaritas! This is what it looks like but the cheapest place I found one was TJ Maxx, save yourself a couple bucks.

Movie and Music

The Greatest Showman movie and soundtrack was a hit with our family. I've been listening to the soundtrack non-stop and can't wait to watch the movie again this Friday. We invited our elderly neighbor over. Hopefully she likes musicals!

Pork Egg roll in a bowl is a delicious low carb meal that definitely went on our list of go-to meals. We made a double batch so we could have lunches too and it took only 30 minutes. Easy after work meal to prepare!

Linking up with Amanda!

What do you have planned this weekend? We have a BBQ benefit for my sister's internship in Haiti on Sunday and Saturday will be spent getting last minute things ready for that. Have a great one!!