Birthday eve…

Sorry for the blogging hiatus: it’s birthday week and I’ve been super busy recovering from the cold that’s going around and prepping for the spectacular birthday party tailgate Brandon and I are throwing tomorrow. I’m biased, of course, but it’s going to be awesome. Please think positive, anti-rain thoughts for us!

I hope you have a great weekend. Think of me on Saturday and give me an air cheers!

I believe this photo was taken nearly 29 years ago...

I believe this photo was taken nearly 29 years ago…

Celebrating our second anniversary

Ready for our "cotton anniversary" photo

Ready for our “cotton anniversary” photo

A very happy second anniversary to my one and only: Brandon!

We’re celebrating with dinner tonight and a big, cold trip to Alaska to see the northern Lights in January.

We also like to give little traditionally-themed gifts for one another. For the paper (first) anniversary, I made Brandon a book of “coupons” and he gave me a scrap book that we’re putting photos of highlights of the year in. We also take photos each year, to celebrate. (And remember how young we once looked…HA!) Last year, I newspaper-mached the letters “O” “N” “E” and we took the photos at my sister’s wedding. We’ll take our anniversary photo tonight, with this cotton-ball covered “two.”

Until then, here are our photos from years passed.

2011 (More wedding photos on our photographer’s blog: Mike Fiechtner Photography.)

Seattle wedding photography on Alki

What a gorgeous couple, if I don’t say so myself… circa 2011

2012

We’re still trying to locate the official photo with the “ONE” in it, but for now, this Instagram-ed shot of our photo booth photo will have to do. Sorry it’s so grainy:

Celebrating our paper anniversary

Celebrating our paper anniversary

Celebrating our first anniversary a week early, at my sister's wedding

Celebrating our first anniversary a week early, at my sister’s wedding

And on our actual anniversary, a trip to Bainbridge

And on our actual anniversary, a trip to Bainbridge

Last year, we went back to the “scene of the crime” and enjoyed the all-you-can-eat award-winning brunch at Salty’s followed by a nap and exploring on Bainbridge Island.

Cheers to many, many more anniversaries!

Happy Birthday, America!

Sorry to butt into your Fourth of July festivities… I wanted to wish you a wonderful day full of family, friends, food and fireworks.

We’re in Central Washington on a fun trip of relaxation and wedding celebrations. In fact, I’m writing this from a nearby winery. Once I hit post, it’s time to do some tasting!

Happy Independence Day from Megan’s Island!

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This the Columbia River, as seen from our cabin.

Happy Birthday, Moll Ball!

Today I’m celebrating my little sister Molly’s birthday. Happy birthday, Moll Ball! I hope you get that really big present today! (They’ve been house-hunting and today might be the day!)

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Clearly we’ve been close for years and she’s always loved her big sister…

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Happy Birthday Jackson!

Happy birthday Jack!

Happy birthday Jack!

I’m a pretty crazy cat lady and have tried to keep it under control on this blog… until now.

My little boy cat turned SIX today! He’s got a wild and crazy birthday planned: something fancy for breakfast and dinner, a day of relaxing on the couch, a few trips up and down the stairs and some quality time harassing Madison (his big sister cat), and lots and lots of snuggles with me.

Enjoy this trip down memory lane as I celebrate Jack’s sixth birthday and reminisce on the days when my little fluff ball first came into my life.

I love you, Jackson Cat Coppersmith Szerwo!

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Jack the kitten

He started out looking a little devilish. Hence his name: Jack.
After the neighborhood terror at my parent’s house.

Cats cuddling

Bath time! Courtesy of Maddie

Cats sleeping

Nap time! Jack as a pillow.

Cats cats and more cats

Playing with his toys.

Instagrammed Jack to the cat

I love these cats!!
I love these cats!!
Sometimes I can get in on the snuggling too. I love cats-as-pillows!

Sometimes I can get in on the snuggling too. I love cats-as-pillows!

Instagram Envy

Instagram Envy: Have you had it? I have.

Instagram Envy: Have you had it? I have.

I met a new friend today and as most conversations tend to do, we ended up talking about social media. She admitted to having a Facebook page, but didn’t like going on because whenever she did, she would get jealous of her friends. Pretty impeccable timing, since I read this article yesterday: “Instagram’s Envy Effect.”

This excerpt sums up the article:

My life looks better on the Internet than it does in real life. Everyone’s life looks better on the internet than it does in real life. The Internet is partial truths—we get to decide what people see and what they don’t.

A fascinating read, this article is spot on. I’ve been victim of Instagram (and Facebook/Pinterest/Twitter/Blog/etc) envy a time or two.  In fact, just the other day I was reading My {DIY} habits, a wonderful new blog written by my friend Katie Cole, and I questioned if/how I could be doing more myself. I’m not sure where she finds the time: Katie works, has a toddler and is an expert DIY home remodel-er and blogger. I’m not a slacker by any means and I like to keep myself busy: full-time job, full-time small business and an aspiring rock star blog all while trying to workout, keep up my FitBit numbers and cook delicious and healthy meals for Brandon and myself. I mentioned my envy to Brandon and asked him if I could be doing more and he laughed at me and told me no. So, that was that.

Pie crust #FAIL. Wasn't pretty but tasted great.

Pie crust #FAIL. Wasn’t pretty but tasted great.

I’m pretty good about talking about my failures along with my successes, especially with home and Pinterest projects, but I’m going to try and reveal a ‘more real’ version of myself and my life online and truly celebrate the everyday. Just tonight I made a highly-anticipated birthday pot pie for Brandon (at his request) and totally failed with the homemade crust. I made the most of what I had to work with and used double crust on the top and called it a “rustic” pot pie.  

I hope you’ll join me in committing to share the highlights and mundane parts of everyday life.

I did it. A year of dinners: photographed.

Phew. 365 dinner postings. Thank you for sticking around, for commenting and for not hiding my Facebook feed. Thank you most of all for following me here, to my new blog!

I hope to post regularly to this blog—so bookmark it now—and come back often. In addition to posting photos (and recipes!) of some of my particularly fascinating or delicious meals, I will post my newest craft creations and excerpts and photos from around the world wide web.

Now, for the dinners.

Brussel sprouts on a pizza!? YES!

It was quite fascinating to actually see my favorite meals, the frequency I make them and my favorite dishes, like pizza and brussel sprouts. There were certainly some fan favorites (shown below) and some fan not favorites. Who knew people would be so judgmental about a dinner!

Over the past year I’ve eaten better than I normally would. I’ve always tried to eat a very well balanced meal for you, my viewers, and I think that I’ve been pretty successful. Sometimes this has meant eating a lot more than I’ve been hungry for, as to not disappoint my followers. There are some weeks when I could eat the same thing over and over again for dinner. I amazed myself at my new-found plating abilities and how frequently I cooked and ate dinner at home. A pat on the back for me.

I spent a few minutes go back through my dinner photos and along with getting hungry, I jotted down my favorites, in no particular order.

Famous Stacy Reilly

Best comment: Stacy Reilly “Omg… I feel super famous right now!!” {On being pictured in October 16’s bowl of tailgating chili}

Worst meal pairing: October 29’s cheese tortellini, leftover chorizo and broccoli. Yuck. I get a bad taste in my mouth just thinking about it!

Most pitiful meal: A tie! December 28’s very yellow meal of corn niblets and taquitos and January 6’s corn niblets and brussel sprouts. I guess that’s what happens when there’s no food in the fridge and I’m too lazy to go to the store or grab take out.

I was pretty adventurous on this food journey. We tried a lot of new recipes and a few new ingredients. That’s one of my 2012 goals: trying new foods.

Here are some other favorites from my year of photographing my dinner: