Tag Archives: Martha Stewart

Open browser tabs | 3 AM edition

I was trying to get back to sleep after feeding Nick a few nights ago and should have done just that (sleep), but instead I scrolled through the approximately 900 open browser tabs on my iPhone.  

Obvious disclaimer: We all know screens and sleep don’t mix.

open browser tabs

Of these 900 (give or take) browser tabs, there were articles I had started to read (and thought maybe, eventually I’d finish), recipes I hoped to make, and Frenchies I would like to sneak into our home.  The usual.  Plus, like, the unusual.  

If it’s 3 AM and you’re reading this, maybe… put down your phone, sniff some lavender and try to do some sort of sleep visualization.  But if it’s the middle of the day and you’re wondering what on Earth I find interesting enough to keep floating around on my phone for days (or in some cases, months), you’re in luck.

OPEN BROWSER TABS | 3 AM EDITION

  • Find a friend (a.k.a. The tab I will keep open forever and always): Every few months, I spot a Frenchie that I am certain is related to Clark and I try to convince Nick that we need to reunite them.  In our home.  Forever.  I’m selfishly not hyperlinking this one because I want first dibs on our next puppy… and because I think there’s much to be said for adopting pets rather than buying from breeders.  
  • Adele on ’25’: Song by Song//The New York Times:  I thought it was interesting to get the back story to each song on her most recent album.  …Interesting enough that this tab has been open since last November.  
  • 6 Stretches for a Lean, Limber Body//Fitness Magazine: Love the emphasis on hips, hamstrings, glutes and ye olde pelvic floor.
  • Thug Life Shirts: I love a witty workout tee.
  • Farmer’s Choice Boxes from Ward’s Berry Farm in Sharon, MA: We haven’t been home enough this summer to justify a full CSA share, but I’ve been keeping my eye on the weekly box offerings from one of our favorite local farms.  New lists are posted each Monday and you have until Wednesday evening to purchase the week’s box if you’re interested.  This week’s box is $23 and includes blueberries, carrots, tatsoi*, summer squash, red beets, lettuce, onions, mint and fava beans.
  • Seasoned Roasted Corn Salad Cups//Martha Stewart:  Looks like summer perfection.  Maybe sharing will motivate me to give this recipe a try.  Or maybe you can make it for me?
  • The Ultimate Manual Photography Cheat Sheet//PicMonkey: A great (and comprehensive) reference guide.  I love PicMonkey for simple photo editing and design, and their blog features helpful tips and tutorials like this one.
  • Edible Flowers//Gourmet Sweet Botanicals: For an upcoming project.  Or just a tasty, pretty snack.
  • 26 Phrases to Calm an Angry Child//The Huffington Post:  These are the things I read at 3 AM and wish I remembered to say at 3 PM.
  • Mary Ann Moss’ Oh My Gouache class: This is easily my favorite painting class I’ve taken in ages.  I revisit Mary Ann’s posts and videos whenever I get the chance.
  • My traveling postcards//Postcrossing: It’s been a few months since I joined Postcrossing and I’m really enjoying finding something other than Gold’s Gym advertisements in our mailbox.  I found a bunch of really cute vintage postcards on the Cape that I’m itching to send to Germany.  Or Thailand.  Or wherever.

*And… I just opened a new tab:  Google search results for “What the heck is tatsoi?”

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Picking out matching hoodies for the babes (I’ve developed a passion for matching baby/toddler fashion)
  • 18 charts for better, healthier snacking via BuzzFeed
  • Watching the Olympic trials (and getting so excited for the Games)

Alright, spill.  What tab(s) is always open on your phone?

Today: S’more s’mores.

According to the Internet, today is National S’mores Day… the perfect made-up summer holiday, if you ask me.  Here are three tasty ways to celebrate.

S’mores on a stick

 

Gluten free graham crackers with Peeps s’mores

 

Lazy (and very tasty) s’mores

No campfire nearby?  S’mores ice cream is the way to go.

Aaaand s’more s’mores ideas:

P.S. You know you’re about to move when the only thing in your freezer is a half-consumed pint of Ben and Jerry’s.

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you have a favorite summer treat?

Today: Easy, up-cycled vases and The Compliment Depot.

Why simply recycle… when you can up-cycle?  And by up-cycle, I mean slap some metallic paint on a few jars destined for the recycling bin.  Easy as that.

My sister’s bridal shower provided the perfect opportunity to dump glitter all over my condo, cut up a bunch of ribbon, and smear paint all over the place.  I love a good craft project.  These vases, which I filled with silk peonies (my sister will have the real deal in her bouquet this weekend), took all of five minutes to make, plus an overnight to dry and cost less than six bucks.

Easy, up-cycled vases

What you’ll need:

  • Several clean, dry glass jars (I used a couple pasta sauce jars and a few Bonne Maman jam jars)
  • Metallic paint (I used this paint in Vintage Gold Satin, but you could use any color or finish… neon perhaps?)
  • An old mixing bowl or similar, deep container that you don’t mind ruining covering in paint (I used a Ziplock container that was missing its lid)
  • Newspaper or cardboard for drying

Super obvious, likely unnecessary step-by-step:

  1. Wash and dry all glass jars and prep am area where you can allow painted jars to dry overnight (I used several old cardboard boxes and bribed Clark to stay away from them).
  2. Work with one jar at a time.  Pour a small amount of paint into your mixing bowl, dip your first jar and tip over to dry, allowing the paint to drip down the sides.  Use as much or as little paint as you like.
  3. Repeat step two until all jars have been dipped.
  4. Allow paint to dry over night before tipping them upright.
  5. Do not use these vases for food or drink.  I am certain neither Martha Stewart nor I want anyone to get poisoned.

These vases would also make great pen and pencil holders for your desk, or cute storage for jewelry and makeup brushes.

Semi-related: Is it just me, or does everyone think The Home Depot be renamed The Compliment Depot?  I dropped in there before work last week and got an unexpected early morning ego boost.  I love places that open early (mostly because I get a run in my nylons nearly every morning and don’t always have an extra pair or nine on hand).  Anyway, I was there to buy a convertible hand cart (my life is truly glamorous, in case that wasn’t abundantly obvious) and walked up and down every aisle twice.  Including the toilet one.  With no luck.

After waiting in line for a few minutes at customer service, I learned the carts are located in the garden department.  The gentleman who pointed me in the right direction remarked on how patient I was (not true, but okay…).  When I estimated that I would need to move more than 150 pounds, but fewer than 800 pounds, the person helping me said I was very smart for knowing that (um… that’s a range of 650 pounds, and I only know that because I used the calculator app on my iPhone).  When I refused an offer of assistance and carried the monstrosity of a cart out on my own, I got a whoa, you’re strong (this person clearly did not see me nearly fall under my own car while trying to lift the cart into the trunk).  I was also complimented on my pretty dress and great smile (I think it was actually a grimace, since I was in the aforementioned toilet aisle).

I’ll be back there soon for more compliments, and more metallic paint.

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your favorite place to shop for creative projects?

 

Today: You’ve got mail. Now what?

Does anyone like checking the mail (like, the actual mail) more than me?  Doubtful.  The only thing I like checking more than the mail is the weather.  Actually, it’s probably too close to call.  With holiday cards, American Girl catalogs (Why, oh why, are we on their mailing list?) and mystery packages flooding in, our mail clutter has gotten a bit out of control.

You’ve got mail.  And it’s piling up all over your condo.  Now what?  Here’s how I reign it in.

Open your mail directly over your recycling bin.

This is the easiest way to cut down on mail clutter.  If it’s in your recycling bin, it can’t be on your kitchen counter.  Easy as that.  Almost all of our catalogs and solicitations go directly into our mail room’s bin.  Anything that makes it in our door (credit card companies can be so sneaky), swiftly gets recycled in our nearby trash room.  If you’re thinking, “But… I don’t recycle,” please leave the Internet immediately and remedy that.  I’m serious.  And so is Al Gore.

Go paperless whenever possible.

If you want to cut back on your overall mail volume, go paperless whenever possible.  You might consider setting up an email address for this express purpose.  For example, if Clark had access to a debit card and a cell phone (in my dreams, he would call me just to chat over lunch), he might have his statements sent to ClarksBILLS(at)topdog.gov.  Or whatever.  This ensures all of your monthly bills and statements are all in one place, without clogging up your personal email inbox with unpleasantries.

An added bonus?  Some companies offer discounts or other incentives when you forgo paper mailings:

To reduce the amount of commercial mail your receive, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s website to learn how to opt out of unsolicited mail and check out Earth 911’s suggested steps.

Keep things contained.

Establish a landing spot for your mail.  This is especially helpful if you have a family, roommates, or if you regularly receive someone else’s mail (I am not sure why that would happen, but in the spirit of inclusiveness…).  I often get home before Nick, so I stash all of his mail and mail that I need to follow up on in this cute little container that I found on One Kings Lane recently.

It matches our English wallpaper, there are no longer random heaps of unopened envelopes strewn about the condo, and life is perfect.

Share your magazine subscriptions, keep only what you’ll use or re-read.

If you’re normal, you might look into iPad or electronic versions of your favorite periodicals.  If you’re like me, you have little interest in going paperless when it comes to books and magazines.  I am sure Kindles are wonderful, but I like the way books smell.  And I like being able to tear out magazine articles that capture my interest.  My love for both books and magazines translates to piles upon piles of the two, however.  Fortunately, there will always be someone interested in reading last month’s Glamour at the gym.  Find a friend, a public library, or a fitness center that accepts donated magazines and make a habit of clearing your stack at the end of each month.  You might even consider reducing the number of magazines you subscribe to, and share subscriptions with a friend.  You subscribe to Martha Stewart Living, she subscribes to Real Simple.  (I would totally call dibs on Martha.)

 

I keep articles (or entire volumes) I can’t bear to part with neatly tucked away in a magazine file or letter-sized box.  Inevitably, I rarely revisit them… so I make sure to clean out these collections every few months as well.  For recipes, quotes, shopping recommendations or workout, I find taking a quick photo and saving it to a specific album on my iPhone does the trick.

Now I just need to get my iPhone albums under control…

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your best trick for staying on top of the mail?

 

Today: The ‘I Do’ to do list.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Shortly after Nick and I got engaged, we checked off a few of the more important things on our I Do to do list.  We booked our wedding date at our church (one of the most special places in Boston, if you ask me… which you didn’t… but I still mean it), and found the perfect venue for our reception.  There was a bump or two in the road (specifically, when one reception site booked us for a date that wasn’t actually available, sending us back to the drawing board, and straight to an even better venue), but everything seemed to be falling into place.

Click this image to see how I procrastinate. In style.

And then I took a four month hiatus from planning.  Oops.  After re-focusing, spending less time pinning wedding inspiration and more time actually making moves, I have been checking off items on that list left and right.  In the past week alone, Nick and I have met with our DJ and photographers (one of my high school classmates!), confirmed our caterer, and sent out our save the dates.   After poring over hundreds of invitation suites, both in person and online, I found a graphic designer on Etsy who created an invitation specifically for art gallery weddings.  Because our reception is being held in a performing art space, and our cocktail hour in a gallery, this grabbed my attention immediately.  The designer worked with us on custom colors and sent us the files while I handled the printing, cutting, addressing and stamping.  In less than an afternoon, they were ready to go.  Though I didn’t time this intentionally, the save the dates (I am making a conscious effort to stop calling them STDs) were postmarked on Valentine’s Day. When Nick pointed this out, I decided to mail one to ourselves.  When I am old and senile, I will look at the postmark and imagine that I planned it that way.

Please feel free to analyze my handwriting.

If wedding planning were a judo competition, we’d presently be kicking ass and taking names (and writing checks to people with those names).  We have a few more appointments this weekend, including a trip with my parents to visit the dress.  I found it the day after Christmas with my sister and sister-in-law.  Though I intended to visit several dress shops, after trying this one on…. well, I knew nothing would compare.  I sort of want to hire a Ghosts and Gravestones trolley, but I don’t think that really fits with our overall aesthetic (i.e. not intentionally hideous), so I need to do some research about transportation.  We’ll meet with our priest, dig up our baptism certificates and complete Pre-Cana (marriage prep for Catholics). Nick has a tux in mind, and I’ll tag along to touch fabrics and be sure they don’t cause me to break out in hives.  We have song lists to make, bridesmaid dresses to pick, and a honeymoon to daydream about.  To think that we’ll be nearly done with just about everything on our list in the next few weeks is rather incredible.

That leaves us with essentially eight months to enjoy ourselves as the plans unfold and the big day approaches.  With so much out of the way, I’ll have time to ponder all kinds of questions.  For example:

  • What does one register for, when one really has everything?
  • What sort of underwears will fit under my dress whilst giving me, um, boobs modest enough for Mass, yet… lively enough for a party?
  • Is there a school that can teach me to be photogenic?
  • Is it too soon to make a color-coded seating chart?
  • Is it too late to kidnap Martha Stewart and coerce her into designing a tablescape?

Fortunately I have my answer to the biggest question ready to go: Yes.  I do.  Muhahaha.

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you keep lists all over the place too?  Or do you have a magic memory?

Today: Entertaining for mortals.

I think I have had a life-crush on Martha Stewart ever since I knew she existed.  Truly.  I don’t really even mind the insider trading thing, because well… I love a comeback.  Do I think it’s unseemly to know right from wrong, and still do wrong?  Absolutely.  But who can deny the majesty of this “simple” wreath chandelier?  Or the perfect presentation of desserts set out for expected carolers?

 

My favorite tips for simple, stress-free entertaining - perfect for the holidays!

Not me.  While I would love to entertain for a living, I sort of need to make a living in order to entertain.  I don’t have a team of stylists.  I do have a dog that likes to decorate the condo with various half-chewed stuffed animals when we have company, but no… no team of stylists.   I can’t pay chefs to cook lavish meals for in-home dinner parties, and the closest I’ve come to having someone food shop for me is Peapod (a veritable life-saver when there’s a blizzard pending and you’re nearly out of TP).  I have never successfully sewn a pair of boiled wool slippers for my every member of my family, though I did successfully print Martha’s handy templates.  That has to count for something.

While it’s unlikely I will ever become Martha Stewart, Jr. (I’ve heard the name change process is a real bore, plus I rather like the new last name that’s waiting for me in November 2012), and it’s equally unlikely that I will have her resources at my disposal, a girl can dream…  And then wake up, use what resources and creativity and flair she does have, and throw a damn good party.  Or decorate a damn lovely condo.  Or bake a damn tasty cake.

I don’t know why I just said damn three times.  Probably for emphasis.  Did it work?  Entertaining is not just for the Marthas of the world.  It’s also for mortals like you and me.  Want to know how I trick people into thinking I have my act together?  Too bad.  I’m going to tell you anyway.

Set the stage

Every Wednesday this Advent, I’ve hosted faith sharing for fellow Jesuit grads.  If that sounds interesting to you, I’d be happy to elaborate.  If you now think I am a crazy Christian, I’m happy to affirm your thoughts.  ‘Tis the season for giving, after all!  Back to Wednesdays.  Our group arrives at my condo just before 7.  I rarely get out of work before 6.  My commute is usually painless, but every once in a while, the person ahead of me forgets how to drive.  I try not to give people the aggressive horn toot on my way to pray, but um… sometimes it just happens.  I’m often left with all of 20 minutes to make sure our condo is guest-ready, set out food and drinks, find matches (I can’t talk about God without candles.  Just kidding.  Kind of.), put my face back on, and turn my work-brain off.  The key here is planning ahead.  And having a fiance who can field my panicked “I am stuck in a meeting and I forgot to vacuum” phone calls.

It’s no secret that I am list obsessed.  When it comes to entertaining, I have this one memorized and use it for brunches, neighborhood Cinco de Mayo parties, and Yankee swaps with my best pals.

They’ll be here any minute and this place looks, um… lived in!

  1. Empty the trash barrels
  2. Wipe down the counters and sinks
  3. Light candles and safely dispose of the matches
  4. Turn on the electric fireplace
  5. Herd Clark’s rogue toys
  6. Set out plates, glasses and napkins
  7. Fluff the cushions on the sofa, and bust out the Scotch fur fighter
  8. Dust and vacuum, if necessary and time allows

This whole process rarely takes more than 10 minutes (when we live in a sprawling mansion, I anticipate it may take longer), and keeps me just busy enough to gain some mental distance between my work day and what lies ahead.  Survey your home and prioritize before you turn into a cleaning machine.  Think about the places people actually notice.  Just last week, someone commented on how clean our bathroom was.  If that person had stepped foot in my shower, or poked their head under my sink, I imagine they may have felt differently.  People will likely not open your dryer, or duck into your closet, so rather than fold your laundry and organize your shoe rack, spend those minutes tidying your living room.

I would be a hot mess if I didn’t have a timeline in mind.  If I have more than 20 minutes, that timeline almost always includes 19 minutes for freaking out when I burn something in the oven.  I make sure that if I need to get dressed or changed, this is not the last thing I do.  Inevitably people show up early, and no one wants to be greeted by my 11 year old Boston College tee shirt with the gaping hole in the armpit.  Once I am feeling presentable, I might pour myself a beverage, or dance around a bit to my favorite jam of the moment.  A relaxed hostess makes for comfortable guests.  A drunk hostess likely has the opposite effect, but that’s a different post for a different day.

Decor need not be a chore.  A vase or two of simply arranged flowers goes a long way.  Three of my current favorites:  a bouquet of kale, a tall vase of white tulips, or a few branches of holly.

Keep food simple, but special

When it comes to food, I’ve mastered a few dishes that take minimal effort, but are just special enough to impress and can be presented in a fun way.  Appetizers and desserts are key here.  I love hosting casual gatherings where you don’t necessarily sit down for a “real” meal.  Mostly because the last time we did that, I undercooked the chicken breast (what’s a vegetarian to do?) and nearly killed Nick, my brother, and my sister-in-law.  Still sorry about that.

 

A few options to consider:

Many of these snacks can be made the night before, or are easily prepped.  I like to keep our kitchen stocked with many of the necessary ingredients on hand, just in case the Pope or my sister drops by.  Pre-baked phyllo shells were a genius invention.  Same goes for those little loaves of bread.  It may be because I am a shorty, but I always gravitate towards miniatures.

Fresh vegetables are an easy fix, especially when coupled with a Greek yogurt dip containing every single spice in our cabinet, and every herb in our refrigerator.  That keeps people guessing.  Oh, and cheese.  Who doesn’t love an artfully arranged plate of cheeses?  Someone I don’t want to know, that’s who (I make exceptions for people who are vegan or lactose intolerant, obvi.).

Pop that Crystal.  Or the $9.99 Prosecco.

When it comes to beverages, I have one word for you: bubbles.  Bubbles make everything more festive.  Nothing says, “Oh maaaaaaan, am I having a good time!” quite like a glass of Prosecco, or perhaps some sparkling water with a splash of pomegranate juice.  As a regular on the designated driver circuit, I always appreciate when tap water is not the only alcohol alternative.

Speaking of designated driving, if you’d like an early Christmas gift, remind me to tell you about the time I was the DD at Nick’s fraternity formal.  You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll nominate me for sainthood.

Keep a stash.  Of cute paper goods.

I tend to keep the presentation clean and simple, using a big ol’ white platter and matching plates.  We have a little stash of fun napkins and paper plates and the like tucked away in one cabinet.  Homegoods is a goldmine when it comes to cute, inexpensive cocktail napkins (imagine the things I would know if my brain weren’t full of thoughts like that one?).  In a perfect world, I would use recyclable cloth napkins and strictly bamboo plates.  But, um… this isn’t a perfect world.  Sorry, Al Gore. 🙁

We keep platters, bowls, a cheese board, extra vases and other items we use almost exclusively for entertaining in that same cabinet. It’s like one stop shopping.  Except that it’s free, and the inventory never changes.

Play it cool.

The bottom line is this: I’m not Martha.  I’m Elizabeth.  My friends come over to hang out with me, not a lifestyle mogul (likely because she won’t return their calls either).  Entertaining, decorating, cooking, baking, playlist making, and mood setting are things I love to do.  If you’re having fun, you’re likely doing a good job, right?  Just be cool.  And in the words of my kindergarten teacher, be yourself.  Nobody likes an imposter… even one that can turn a wreath into a chandelier.  For the record: I haven’t tried.  Yet.

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you like entertaining?  Or would you prefer to show up with a bottle of wine in hand?

Today: A few of my (current) favorite things.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens (ew, I hate cats).  Let’s just cut to “a few of my favorite things.”

Basil grown from seed

I started growing these little guys from a seed kit early this summer.  While the basil isn’t quite ready to harvest, or whatever, I am quite surprised I’ve kept it alive this long.  I sneak over to the windowsill a few times each week to water the canister, and linger just long enough for a whiff of fresh basil– one of my favorite scents in the world.  Every once in a while I pick up Clark so he can have a sniff, too.  On second thought, maybe I have terrorized the basil to the point that it won’t grow any taller?

Christmas anything

We came home from New York to a full mailbox, stuffed with holiday-themed magazines.  With training behind me, and a wobbly foot below me, I can think of no better way to pass the time than tucked under a warm throw on the sofa with Martha Stewart at my side.  Will this be the year I sew felt slippers for everyone I know?  Likely not, but a girl can dream.

I’ve been alternating between sports talk and the oldies station in Boston that is already playing exclusively holiday music during my brief commute to and from work.  It feels so wrong, and yet so right.  Nothing cures a long day at work quite like a solo-sing-along on Massachusetts Avenue.  Everyone sounds good singing Christmas carols.  As my friends on 98.5 the Sports Hub would say, Fact.  Not opinion.

I know it’s not even Thanksgiving yet, and that I shouldn’t wish away the time, but peppermint and snowflakes and tinsel are my lifeblood.  I can’t help it.

Paper straws

What’s whimsical but sturdy, candy-striped but calorie free?  A paper straw.  One of life’s little luxuries and better for the environment than, um, plastic straws (but worse than say, not using a straw at all)… this little jar is a great reminder to keep throwing back that water.  Not that I need much of a reminder, as I am perpetually thirsty.

Want to hear a sad story about water? (It’s not really that sad, and yes, I am well aware how lucky I am to have a reliable source of clean, drinkable water.)  When I finally crossed the finish line last Sunday (I promise to stop talking about this sooner rather than later), yanked my right shoe off, and hobbled the eleven blocks to the park exit, all I wanted was a cup of water.  And a chariot to transport me to meet my cousin, sister, and fiance.  And a warm bath.  And six bags of cheese doodles.  Okay, I wanted a lot of things… but water was at the top of the list.

We were given a bottle of water in our finishers’ bags, but my hands were full, and mostly, I felt crazy.  Too crazy to open the bag and peel the cover off the bottle.  I made a deal with myself: hobble the three additional blocks necessary to grab a taxi, get situated while waiting for a cab to arrive, and break into that stash of water and pretzels.

With no free cabs in sight, I opened my bag, fished out my water bottle and set it on ground next to me.  I called Nick to tell him it may take me a while to get to them, feeling equal parts sore and discouraged.  Just as I hung up, a car careened past me, hitting my water bottle and smashing it flat, sending water clear across Amsterdam Avenue.  Being the most pathetic person on the planet (or at least, the block), I burst into tears.  And then got refused by a taxi driver who clearly thought I was mentally insane.  Waaa.  Anyway, I like straws.

Getting jacked

Though I’m registered for a race next month (I am planning to dress as a Christmas tree.  See tinsel as lifeblood above.), I want to make sure I give my little body plenty of time to recover before hitting the road.  Instead, I will hitting the gym.  Hard.  Sort of.  I’ve really loved strength training at the boxing gym, and am looking forward to upping the ante a bit.

Nick is helping me navigate Stage 1 of The New Rules of Lifting for Women, which seems to be a great jumping-off point and the perfect set of goals to work toward.  I’m also looking forward to putting my TRX to use, cashing in a Groupon for a 10-pack of yoga classes, and making time for all the things I put off “because of the marathon.”

With cats to hate basil to grow, holidays to celebrate, water to sip and iron to pump, I have a feeling I’ve got plenty to keep myself busy.  Hopefully so busy that I don’t have time to act on my inclination to register for another marathon.

Also On Tap for Today:

Care to share a few of your favorite things?

Today: Here comes the bridezilla.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Just kidding.  I haven’t turned evil… yet.  Then again, we haven’t made any concrete plans, so who knows what I am capable of?  Muhaha.  We are visiting our first potential venue this coming week, but until we have an actual date set, it’s difficult to do things like, um… send out save the dates.  Or reserve a moon walk (some people call them moon bounces or bounce houses.  Those people also happen to be wrong.).

A bouquet from our sweet neighbor, and the box where I store my wedding secrets. Shh.

I’ve been all over Pinterest, however, pinning flowers and cakes and basically anything Martha Stewart has published in the past decade.

I’ve also been perusing various wedding magazines and I’ve got to tell you, the pictures are pretty, but most of the words make no sense.  Take, for example, this article by David Tutera.  You may have seen his terrifying television show?  According to David, a bride’s mantra should be “This is my day.”

After marching around our living room chanting “This is my day!” in my sweaty boxing outfit earlier this week, I found it prudent to assure Nick that our wedding day will be our day, not my day.  Imagine if Nick turned into a groomzilla?  That would be amazing.  Regardless, if that article is at all representative, the bridal industry thrives on tools tulles the self-absorbed. (Maaaan, I crack myself up.)

Then there are the ubiquitous countdowns, found in every, single magazine I’ve creepily bought.  Could they be any more anxiety producing?

Holy crap!  I’ve only been engaged for a few weeks, and I am not sure when the wedding will be, but Lord, have mercy.  I’d better ask my fiance what his groomsmen plan to wear!  And then I need to register for silverware and random kitchen gadgets!  And then I need to demand that my sister shrink by several feet so she can serve as both maid of honor and flower girl!

Thanks, but no thanks, crazy magazines.

For the time being, I am just happy to be focusing on the fact that we’re happy.  And lucky.  And excited.  And engaged.  And (mostly) not totally demented.

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Prep for tomorrow’s long run (i.e. don’t eat ice cream)
  • Try not to get hit by a satellite 
  • Sparkling Chardonnay!  Yay! 🙂

What’s the wackiest thing you’ve witnessed at a wedding?

Today: You’re invited to a pity party.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false] Please bring the pita chips.

Remember when my face nearly fell off from the sheer excitement of attending The Martha Stewart Show, with my dog and my boyfriend?  Well, I had to scrape that very same freckled face off the floor last week or the week before (I’ve been wallowing for so long, I’ve lost track of time) when my BlackBerry alerted me to an email from the show.

  • My first thought: That blinking red light thing is so annoying.
  • My second thought: I love when Martha emails me just to say “Hi, girl!”  She’s so cute.
  • My third thought: Maybe the show’s producers Facebooked me and were like, “Now this is a creature to behold.  We should probably have her perched on Martha’s arm throughout the entirety of the episode.”

And then I read the actual message.

Bam! Head on desk.  The taping had been rescheduled… for the same day as a major work event.  When you’re the boss lady, you kind of need to be at those things.  In other words:

I know there are 50 million worse things that could happen to a girl, but I have to bring it real talk, people.  I was super disappointed.  Meanwhile, Boyfriend of the Year was busy emailing the Martha Stewart Show, behind my back, and begging them to help.  You can imagine my surprise when my BlackBerry was ringing and the caller ID showed a Manhattan exchange (I used to have a 917- number… I’m very cosmopolitan, but not cosmo enough to have had a 212-).  It was a show employee calling to offer me tickets for the original taping, sans Frenchie (because it was no longer a dog show).

I was an awkward mumbler and sort of blacked out, so I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to call or email someone to confirm this time around.  But I do remember saying “yes.”  So my disappointment turned to an optimistic confusion.  My confusion turned to “You emailed Martha Stewart?!” and sincere appreciation.  I thanked Nick the only way I could think of, with a Martha Stewart ribbon (heinously photographed by the aforementioned BlackBerry).

I do Martha a disservice by posting this photo, but trust me. Like all of her products, her message ribbons are top notch. And every girl should have several spools just floating around in her handbag.

Then, a few days later, I got another 917- call.  The taping had been canceled altogether (i.e. no dog show, and no human show).  I did receive an invitation to attend a taping when I’m free, though.  Which according to my day planner is in 2017.  The ladies at MSLO were really, really nice.  And I really appreciate Nick going out of his way to try and remedy the situation.   And Clark doesn’t speak English, so he could care less.

So, folks.  I hope you still like me and Clark, even though we’re not going to be famous (this month), after all.

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your favorite depressing song?  I’ll add it to my iPod immediately.  Just kidding… or am I?

Today: Martha, here we come!

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false] I don’t think you’re ready for this jelly.

I got an email late yesterday from The Martha Stewart Show regarding an upcoming taping of a very special lapdog episode.  And I completely freaked out.  In just two weeks, Nick and I are heading to New York for the show.  Oh, and Clark’s invited to join the audience too.  Can you stand it?!

The next two weeks will be spent:

  • Picking out the perfect outfits (we received instructions to “dress to impress” and wear bright colors)
  • Bleaching my teeth
  • Practicing hairdos (for both me and Clark)
  • Selecting the perfect dog sweater
  • Pretending to shake hands with my idol (preferably without fainting)
  • Screaming at the top of my lungs and jumping on the bed

I’m totally jazzed.

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Mmm… winning Super Bowl recipes from Whole Foods
  • Class at The Pawsitive Dog 🙂
  • Track workout (on the treadmill, obvi)

Which celebrity would you most like to meet?