Galentines 2015: Share the Love

We all know what the middle of February brings. A overload of red and pink everything, too much chocolate, terrible poetry, and expensive bouquets. All in the name of L O V E. Yeah, it’s Valentines day. I’ve celebrated the holiday as a single and as a couple, with friends and with strangers, all alone and with pets. While I do not necessarily believe you should spend a bunch of money in order to show that special someone how you feel on ONE day, it’s nice to let them know that on February 14th they are loved just as much as the other 364 days.

This year, my sister and I celebrated an early Galentines day (part one for me). Cupcakes and cookies and laughs and lots of love all included.

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As a fan of most holidays, I like Valentines especially because I feel so inclined to wear pink. It’s actually one of the few times a year I will purposely wear the color. Something I like even more about the holiday are all the decorations and crafts. Homemade garland, paper streamers, cut outs, and heart shaped everything really gives me major emoji heart eyes in real life!unnamed5 9 10 11For Galentines 2015, cupcakes took center stage. Strawberry champagne cupcakes to be exact (thanks Whole Foods)! These heavenly concoctions were too sweet not to share. 6 7 8 12 13 14 15 17 18

I consider myself to be pretty damn lucky to have such a rad little sister to spend Galentines with, as well as a bunch of other off holidays. And when the 14th comes along and I’m sitting on the couch watching Sleepless in Seattle with my cats (Growlentines), I’ll still feel pretty damn lucky.

 

Don’t be a grump on v-day. Smile & share the love, yall!

 

(Galentines Part Two in NYC will also involve sharing love and lots of pizza.)

 

Papa Don’t Peach (Pie)

Let’s rewind the clock and really even flip the calendar back a month to June. I don’t normally like to go back in time, but pie is involved so I’ll make an exception.

The Monday beginning Fathers Day week I found myself lying in bed not being able to sleep and thinking about food, per usual. I swear, all of my best ideas come to me via delirium. This one also came courtesy of Madonna, an earlier trip to my butcher crush’s establishment, and the onslaught of summer. PEACHES AND BACON – I had the perfect pie any pops would like on their day.

When I shared this bright piedea with friends, theladies were like “that’s a strange combination” and the dudes were like “fuck yeah, bacon”. From their responses I knew I was on the right track. I used the same all butter pie crust recipe I’ve grown accustomed to, with the addition of 2 teaspoons of cinnamon. Crust is always my favorite part of the pie so I love making minor adjustments to the recipe in order to bring out the flavor in the filling. As for the peaches, cream, and bacon, I took the local route. I love any excuse to visit my local butcher (I have the biggest crush on that man) and farmers markets are a no brainer.

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Papa Don’t Peach Pie

For the Filling:

8-10 ripe peaches, peeled and sliced

1 tbs fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp vanilla + 1/2 tsp maple syrup

1 cup sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

2 tbs + 2 tsp corn starch

1 1/2 tbs tapioca 

pinch kosher salt

  1. Peel and slice peaches and place into a large mixing bowl. make sure your peaches are ripe, otherwise this is a pretty arduous task….it really is the pits. (Ha!) Try brown bagging your fruit for a day or 2 beforehand. Toss in and coat the peaches with the fresh lemon juice, vanilla, and maple syrup.Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with e8 preset
  2. In a separate smaller bowl, combine all of your (other) dry ingredients. Lightly toss the mixture in with the peaches with a rubber spatula.  This is why I love making fruit pies, so simple! Processed with VSCOcam with e8 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with e8 preset
  3. Lightly fry up a few slices of bacon in a skillet. Then dice those babies up. We will dot the filling with bacon instead of butter!Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset
  4. When assembling your pie, a double crust is the way to go. I would recommend either a tight lattice crust or small vent slits. Peaches are more on sensitive side. You don’t want to end up scorching your fruit or hurting anyone’s feelings. I have a love for latticing things, so duh, I went with a fat, tight, and diagonal weave. Before adding the filling, I like to dust the bottom half of the pie shell with a mixture of equal parts sugar and flour. This helps to thicken up any juices during the baking process. Yum! Finally after spooning your peaches into the shell, dot with the little cubes of bacon before starting to weave the top crust layer. Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset
  5. Pop your assembled pie into the freezer for about 30 minutes. This help the crust to maintain its shape during the baking process. No one likes a droopy crust! After freezing, brush the top layer of crust with a mixture of equal parts heavy cream and whole milk. Another trick for the books, this gives you a soft yet flaky and goldenly delicious pie crust. I used local dairy products, too! Happy cows=happy pies, right? Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset
  6. Bake this baby for 1 1/2 hours at 350 degrees, rotating every 20 minutes. Let cool for an hour before delving in. I served the pie with homemade coldbrew coffee, but I can only imagine the amazingness of a la mode! Next time, next time.Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset

 

If and when I finally make that pie shoppe dream come true, this will definitely be on the menu come fathers day. It may have to become a summer staple, because who doesn’t like peach pie? (Answer: weirdos/people who are not my friends)

 

***Because bacon is involved, this also makes a great breakfast choice!***Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset Processed with VSCOcam with e8 preset

Friday Favorites 8.16

Last week, I spent a very sweaty couple of days in my favorite city with my dad and 2 of my 3 sisters. New Orleans, NOLA, the Big Easy, Crescent City, call it what you want, is the land of Creole and crayfish! My favorite place to be..just not during the month of August, haha! Kidding. New Orleans is the home to so many of my favorite things. Things you can’t find anywhere else!

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If you follow me on INSTAGRAM then you probably know alllll about my little Nola getaway. Last week was crazy! The day I got back from the TXSC conference I moved into my new apartment house, went to work for 1 day, then caught a plane. It was so nice to be in “the City that Care Forgot” with the people I love most. Not having to pay for any meals was also swell. Thank God my dad is a foodie! And the food here is the best you will ever have. Seafood and spice and everything nice. Plus poboys. Plus fried chicken. Plus jambalaya. Plus….I could write forever about Nola’s food! Sadly, this time around I didn’t take a shit ton of food pics. I will leave you with my Nola Favorites Top 10 List! instead!

Annie’s Nola Favorites Top 10 List

1. Cemeteries. Fun fact: Did you know that the words cemetery and graveyard are not interchangeable? Graveyards are burial grounds adjacent to a church whereas a cemetery is strictly a resting place. There are churches on pretty much every corner in Nola, but they keep the dead people separate. A few Canal St. cemeteries are in pretty close proximity to churches…So maybe they overlooked the real meaning of the word? Anyway. I love dead people? That sounds weird. Nola falls below sea level so all the dead must be buried above ground in elaborate stone crypts and mausoleums, making the city truly unique. I really want to visit the St. Louis #1 on Basin St. in the Treme….but Travel Advisor says no way, Jose! #sketch

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2. The French Quarter: Mainly Decatur and lots of side streets. Le duh! Bourbon St. is a little too crowded for me, but I am not at the age yet where I will complain. My mom hates Bourbon, Nola altogether really. She thinks it stinks! Double le duh! It’s built on a swamp, the city is constantly drunk, and almost everything in the FQ is covered in frat boy piss. And the roaches. I love and prefer Decatur! Last Thanksgiving I stayed at the French Market Inn, a haunted hotel built in the 1700s on Decatur. Centrally located and awesome! So many of the major sights can be seen here as well!

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3. Cafe du Monde. Need I say more? Always busy. Always fresh. Beignets et cafe au lait.

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4. The National World War II Museum. This is probably my dad’s favorite, and a new one of mine! I am obsessed, no OBSESSED with European history. One of my favorite undergrad courses over WW I&II in Europe. This museum is huge! We’re talking 4+ buildings! We got to watch a doc in 4D hosted by Tom Hanks titled Beyond All Boundaries. Very interesting and interactive! Scroll down to see me covering my ears in a German bomb shelter!

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5. Sno Balls. Forget snow cones! We are not in Kansas (or anywhere else in the U.S. that isn’t Nola) anymore! These powdery, icy treats are native to the city and only really open during the summer months. Where Texas has Shiner Beer, Nola has a sno ball to cool you off! Usually a Plum St. kind of gal, I branched out and tried Hansen’s off Tchopitoulas. We went back  3 days in a row!

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6. Oak Street. That street name will forever hold a special place in my heart. I lived on the Denton version for a few years. It’s also home to my favorite bar, creatively named Oak Street Drafthouse haha! The Nola version is just as lovely. Home to a favorite brunch spot, the Oak St. Cafe, as well as a very eclectic consignment shop where the old lady owners still wear pillbox hats and items are always 75-90% off! Hello vintage Pucci for real cheap! It also turns out that we are the long-lost relatives of the Haase’s Shoes store owners!

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7. FREE Citrus. Well I guess not technically, but I always manage to make it home with a few lemons or limes I snagged from a tree in the Garden District! Locally grown and organic!

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8. Hoods. Treme, French Quarter, Garden District, Mid City, Uptown, Marigny, Bywater, New Orleans is divided into so many neighborhoods! My favorites are the Garden District/Uptown and Mid City. We went to rock and bowl, and then promptly discovered how bad my family as a whole is at bowling. I think my highest score was a 23…. Bumpers, please! Oh yeah, New Orleans definitely has it fair share of ‘hoods’ too. Lil Wayne reps the city! Holly Grove what what?

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9. Magazine Street. So yeah I have a thing for streets. Magazine has so many cool shops and restaurants! Definitely one of my favorites!

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10. THE FOOD!!! I saved the best for last! As you read way up there, Nola has the best food. You also know I didn’t take any pictures. I will leave you with one of my favorites: Parkway! In Mid City! I always get the Reuben….but their poboys are the size of my arm!

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Have any of you guys been to New Orleans? If so, what are your favorite places to visit? If not, please let me be your virtual tour guide! I know so much!

Hope you all have a happy Friday and a lovely weekend!

Friday Favorites 7.19

Thank goodness it is finally Friday! I didn’t think this week would ever end! I am finally getting to see the Katharina Grosse exhibit at the Nasher tonight! But before that I am going to a conference. Librarian shit, wut wut! Here are my favorite things….errr….well, my favorite person.

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I grew up in a family of 6 kids. Actually, I’ll clarify even more: I grew up in a family of 3 sets of twins. Four girls and two boys. You betcha my mother is crazy and my dad….well my dad is quiet. Of course having any number of siblings will constitute sibling rivalry. But out of all of them, I fought with Sarah the least. We shared a room, clothes, a love for Heath Ledger and much more, though we were not even twins!

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I guess you could say, off the record, she is my favorite sister? Naw I love all of them, just in different ways haha. Anyway, Sarah is a blogger. She used to regale the internet with her hilarious nanny diary anecdotes. Those kids were such crazy brats! Then she archived all of her new clothes from when she worked at a cute San Antonio boutique, Anniegogglyn. Now she just blogs about everything. If you like foul mouthed, well dressed, southern humor you should totally read her blog! She makes me laugh. Check out these adorable & punny cards she makes! I would totally hang some of these on my wall of not already in the mail heading to those far away friends!

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sew happy

 

Oh yeah, something else that is pretty cool. SIX DEGREES OF BLOGGER SEPARATION! Sarah is in a long distance relationship with a Pennsylvania boy named Joel Blumer. They met as members of my cousin’s wedding party and have practically been together ever since.

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Joel’s sister is a blogger for The Bandwife and she also works for A Beautiful Mess!  Elsie & Emma, It’s like i practically know them, recently had a post about naming cocktails after people. They named one after Joel’s parents Ron and Sheila called The Late Blumer!

Well I thought it was cool.

Sidenote: I forgot to mention in last night’s post how much I love mushrooms. I used to hate them, but now! Oh me oh my! I did eat my first raw mushroom yesterday! Look at these fun guys that were hanging in my front yard this morning.

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Well there you have it. Some of my favorite things: Sisters, blogs, bloggers, cards, and mushrooms!

Hope you all have a great start to your weekend!