October Variety Show.2

So in this temporary break from the Eurotrip series, here's a summary of our activities in the second half of October:

Birthday month, part 2

Our good pals B&K have birthdays 10 days apart. Each of them coordinate the other's birthday plans, so for K's birthday, B rounded up the Gang of Six for a homemade dinner.

Okay, I'm getting ahead of myself by showing you dessert first, but isn't she adorable?!
Although you might guess that the boy would take the easy way out and prepare, oh I don't know, corndogs and Cheez-Its, you would be wrong, my friend. This guy made lasagna. Possibly for the first time ever.

Garlic bread and Caesar salad rounded out the Italian birthday meal.

I think he might have scored some points with the birthday girl.

While B slaved over a hot stove and I took photos (pretty much getting in his way), N harassed Walter.

At least someone is happy in the next shot:

As a birthday treat, SD made Deep Dish Cookies. I love anything in a ramekin, and these were truly of the melt-in-your-mouth variety.

Once again, we non-chefs crowded in for a closer look, all in the name of "helping":

As the lovely ADP put it: N is helping...himself.
With a little bit of ice cream on top, this dessert was a crowd-pleaser.

Happy birthday, KK! Glad we got to feed you more than popcorn this year!

Cooking al fresco

A while ago, my long-time pal AJD sent me a recipe for a super fresh pasta dinner. I finally got around to making it recently, and I loved the bright, fresh colors created by the fresh ingredients.

Basically, it uses fresh tomatoes, red peppers, olive oil, and red wine vinegar to make a "sauce" for the pasta, and it's garnished with basil and ricotta cheese.

This captures the meal before ricotta, salt, and pepper were added.
I do love food recommendations - let someone else be the guinea pig, and all that's left for me to do is prepare and enjoy! Thanks, A! Keep the recommendations coming, all!

Craft night

Most of my close friends have absolutely fallen deeply in love with the Pinterest phenomenon. For those of you not already hooked, it's basically like having a ton of online bulletin boards, where you post images of your favorite things. It can be inspiration overload, if you ask me, but it's super great for finding a new recipe, or a new hair style, or even a new craft project.

My Cayman friends are as hooked as anyone else, and recently SD hosted a craft night based on a project she found while Pinterest browsing.

The evening started with an autumn-inspired snack (courtesy of - you guessed it - Pinterest):

Acorns! I don't even think we have oak trees in Cayman, so these were pleasant to see.
The assigned craft was a menu board made out of a picture frame and card stock. I bought a document frame from Office Supply (2 for $10), one piece of 12x12 paper (since it only needed to cover 8.5x11), and the master crafters in our midst supplied the rest.

Honestly, most of craft night was spent picking out paper and lettering. Well, at least for some of us.

This one got right down to business.

So did our resident master crafter, AK. Unbelievably, she was able to design seven small menu boards (one for each day) in the time that the rest of us designed one!

Ohh, a pretty color palette. It's like looking at a box of 64 Crayolas.

While I was still making decisions about fonts and color schemes, SM completed her board. She was quick to add Thursday's permanent menu item to her finished product:

Might as well write "Grand Old House" in permanent marker.
 I was impressed with SD's efforts. Her math teacher skills trumped my accounting background, as she whipped out the good ol' TI-83, a protractor, and a ruler. (Sidenote: I hadn't seen or even said the word "protractor" since probably 9th grade!)

Photo taken by KK

Finally, finished products by KK and SD:

Craft night was an enjoyable time spent with these lovely girls. I love any opportunity to use the right side of the brain, so I'm hoping craft night was not a one hit wonder. Bring on Craft Night 2.0: Christmas Edition!


  1. Sounds fun!!! A ramekin is on my Christmas list :)

  2. Oh! I Want to see your menu board!


  3. yay for the craft night christmas edition! i'm so excited! thanks for featuring my b-day party too. so many fun memories.

  4. I'm totally making it to a cayman craft night. Just try to stop me.

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