Flooding Susie’s Inbox

March 27, 2011

The Arteest Is In

Filed under: Family, Sewing — sashyjane @ 9:58 pm

Both of my sisters are highly artistic. Unfortunately, the artist gene – like toned thighs and the confidence to wear a tube top – is something that I don’t have.  One particularly artistic sister, Susie, has her BFA and just painted this little number for her bedroom.

If you like what you see, Susie is offering her skillz as an arteest up to you, John and Jane Q. Public. Take a look at her portfolio of other work here. Interested in having her create a custom piece? Contact her by email at susieroupe{at}gmail{dot}com.

In other artistic sister news, my older sister, Joy has a children’s clothing line. She sells her darling things on Etsy here.

June 14, 2010

Genesis 2:18

Filed under: Family, Weddings — sashyjane @ 12:47 pm

Jonathan is the first grandkid on our side to get married; he’s also the only boy.  I’m sure Thanksgiving, Christmas and Master’s weren’t much fun for him as a child: Lauren and I would always buddy up and Susie would play with us between naps and when Brittany came along, it was fun to play house with a real baby. But poor Jonathan had to entertain himself.  With no boy cousins, he had to either make conversation with the adults or find something boyish to do.

As a child, I remember being terrified of Jonathan. On one particular visit to Grandmama and Papa Dan’s house, he found a whip in the toy closet and chased me and Lauren with it. We sought retreat in the blue bedroom and waited in fear for him to go away. He was so different from the boys I played with at home, they could all be bossed around. Jonathan would skulk around the house with his poufy Dwight Shrutesque haircut showing off his card and magic tricks. I didn’t understand him.

It wasn’t until we were much older that I began to appreciate Jonathan’s heart and sense of humor. I actually began to look forward to spending time with the whole Morgan family. It’s been incredible to see Jonathan morph from a rambunctious boy into a Godly man over the last 2+ decades and it was a complete honor to bear witness to his wedding on Saturday to Meagan.

Jonathan’s face was the happiest one I’ve ever witnessed on a groom as Meagan made her way down the aisle. He was grinning from ear to ear and it was impossible to contain his joy. I am so thankful that such a Godly, beautiful and kindhearted person has made my beloved cousin so happy! Now he won’t have to entertain himself at family functions – he finally has somebody to play with! :)

As was evident by the mini speeches at their rehearsal dinner, these two are perfectly suited for one another. Each one complements the other in every possible way. What a testament to God’s faithfulness and perfect plan! Their wedding was beautiful and so worshipful and I’m so excited to see God’s plan further revealed for their lives!

*I’m no Annie Leibovitz so please pardon my pictures.

 

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June 9, 2010

Mr. and Mrs. Morgan

Filed under: Family, Weddings — sashyjane @ 3:19 pm

Tomorrow, I’m headed to Tampa, FL for a very joyous ocassion.  My brilliant and hilarious cousin, Jonathan, is marrying the very beautiful and very sweet Meagan Van Ost.

I met Meagan last Spring and was instantly impressed by her sweet spirit and servant’s heart. Spend 5 minutes with the two of them and you’ll need no convincing that they belong together.

They support each other in their endeavors

They share similar interests (Meagan doesn’t mind sharing Jonathan with his other love, Alabama football)

They work through their differences in a godly manner

They appreciate the other’s sense of humor

They clean up pretty well

And most importantly, they seek to honor the Lord in their relationship

I am so pleased to welcome Meagan into our family and I’m so excited for their future! I’ll be sure to post some pictures of what is sure to be a stunning wedding upon my return.

Congratulations and Best Wishes to Mr. and Mrs. Morgan!

May 28, 2010

Some{thing} Change is Afoot at the Circle K*

Filed under: Family, Houses — sashyjane @ 10:06 am

*Bonus points if you can name that altered movie reference.

This weekend finds me with some unexpected circumstances.  I am packing up my beloved little townhouse, putting my things in storage and {dunt dun dun!} moving in with Mama and Daddy.  This living situation will be for just a few months until I get some exciting plans {more on that at another time} ironed out. I think my stay with them while my broken heel healed was probably the Lord preparing me for this season.

As I’m packing and condensing so that everything will fit into my high school bedroom and a 10×20 storage room, I’m finding a ton of junk that needs purging. It’s quite cathartic. It’s just too bad none of it is worth much or I could have a tidy little yard sale.

  Have any of you returned home after 4 or more years of independence? How did you deal? What things worked {or didn’t}? Any advice is greatly welcomed. 

In other news, I’m joing the ranks of a billion other women and going to see SATC 2 tonight! I’m sure Cosmo consumption will be at an all-time high across the nation this weekend. I’m beyond excited to see Aiden again!! AH!!

Anybody seen it yet? Was it 100% fluffy fun? Better, worse, about the same than the first?

May 5, 2010

A Busy Week in Gift-Giving

Filed under: Family — sashyjane @ 11:56 am

This week is quite a busy one!  Today is Daddy’s birthday, tomorrow is my niece Emily’s birthday, Saturday is Susie’s graduation and Sunday is Mother’s Day!!  Usually I love giving gifts and picking out the perfect presents but my gift-giving ideas seem to be tapped out.  Everybody has a gift wrapped and ready but they just aren’t perfect. However, if money was free flowing, I could give all my favorite people brilliant gifts.

Daddy

A Straight Razor and shaving kit in Sandalwood .

Emily

A cool chandelier  or other accents for her new pink and black bedroom.

Susie

Leather Macbook case in Corn, Citrus or June or Pearl earrings

Mama

A gift certificate for a den/living room makeover with Erika.

Grandmama

A new set of patio furniture complete with table, chairs, glider, chaise and rocking chair.

What are you giving your Mama for Mother’s Day?

December 19, 2009

There’ll be parties for hosting, marshmallows for roasting…

Filed under: Entertaining, Family, Food, VeryVera — sashyjane @ 10:59 am

In movies and TV shows, you always see the impeccably dressed matriarch slaving away in the kitchen for days to present her family with a magnificent feast at the impossibly glossy and beautifully set dining room table. The patriarch then stands and says a few words before rolling up the sleeves of his oxford shirt and cashmere pullover to carve the beautiful bird. The family gazes up adoringly at this patriarch as he slices off picture perfect slices of golden turkey that isn’t at all dry. The boys straighten their ties and the girls straighten their pearls. They almost always look like Ozzie and Harriet.

In my family, it’s quite a different picture. There are card tables and folding chairs scattered throughout the house, almost everybody is in jeans, everybody brings a dish or two and we set the casseroles and platters on the kitchen counter and each member goes through the buffet line, helping themselves to the bounty. Sounds a little more attainable, right? The only problem with the potluck style supper is that inevitably, everybody needs to warm their dish “just a few minutes” on the stove or in the oven.

Avoiding this problem is simple with a little preplanning when deciding which dish you’re going to bring. For example, prepare the yummy and oh-so-satisfying baked spinach and gruyere casserole or the savory and sweet rye and apple dressing, bake them at home and transport them in an insulated bag or cardboard box lined with towels. For as long as I’ve known her, Grandmama keeps a cardboard box lined with an old beach towel in her truck for just such occasions.

Desserts are always an easy contribution. Cheesecakes can be made ahead and refrigerated. Layer cakes can be iced far in advance and easily transported in a cake carrier. Brownies, cookies and pies can be prepared the week before pulled from the freezer the day before to thaw. Cranberry sauce is another easy way to contribute a holiday staple without getting underfoot in the kitchen. Daddy prefers the cranberry gelatinous cylinder while the rest of the family goes for the homemade cranberry-orange sauce. Either way, it’s prepped and ready to go ahead of time. In true Southern fashion, the green beans we eat at Christmas have been cooked to death and usually arrive hot. This leaves the kitchen free for the last minute dishes like the maple glazed carrots, gravy and roasted Brussels sprouts with pecans.

Even if your Christmas dinners look more like the Nelson family’s than mine, a little forethought and preplanning can save you or the host(ess) a great deal of stress and last minute prep work. And that’s the way to really enjoy the holidays.

Blue Potatoes Au Gratin
2 1/2 pounds blue potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup shredded Gruyere
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking dish or similar sized casserole dish. Arrange the sliced potatoes in the prepared dish. In a medium saucepan, saute the minced garlic in butter over medium heat until softened and fragrant. Stir in flour and cook for 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in the cream until smooth and thick. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheeses. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour cheese sauce over the potatoes in the dish. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes until browned.
*from the Food Network

Rye and Apple Dressing
½ stick unsalted butter
½ loaf rye bread, cut into ½ inch pieces (about 6 cups)
½ loaf sourdough bread, cut into ½ inch pieces (about 6 cups)
2 onions, chopped
4 stalks celery, cut into ½ inch pieces
Salt and pepper
2 Granny Smith apples, cut into ½ inch pieces
3 c. chicken broth
1 c. fresh parsley, chopped
¼ c. fresh sage, chopped
2 large eggs, beaten

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Butter a deep 3 quart casserole. Place bread on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until golden, 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery and ½ t. each of salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 8-10 minutes. Stir in the apples and cook for 2 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Add the vegetable mixture, parsley and sage to the bread and toss to combine. Mix in the eggs. Transfer to the prepared dish and cover loosely with buttered foil. Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until golden, 12-15 minutes.

Maple-Glazed Carrots
3 lbs. carrots, sliced ¼ thick on the diagonal
¼ c. maple syrup
2 T. unsalted butter
Salt and pepper

In a large skillet, combine the carrots, syrup and butter with 1/3 c. water, ½ t. salt, and ¼ t. pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, stirring once, until the carrots are tender and the liquid has reduced to a glaze, 12-15 minutes.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pecans
2 lbs. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
1 c. pecans, roughly chopped
2 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

Heat oven to 400 degrees. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss Brussels sprouts, pecans, oil and garlic with ½ t. salt and ¼ t. pepper. Turn the Brussels sprouts cut side down. Roast until golden and tender, 20-25 minutes.

All recipes and carrot  image from Real Simple Magazine

Article originally published here.

December 10, 2009

Believe it or not, I’m walkin’ on air.

Filed under: Family — sashyjane @ 2:39 pm

I just remembered something! Last week, on the 2nd and 3rd of December, it was Susie and Mama’s birthdays! What a terrible sister/daughter to not have recognized them on my extremely wide-read blog!

For Susie’s birthday, I found an adorable Nine West orange leather bag and Nine West alligator belt.  Being the bargain hunter that I am, I scored both gifts at Marshall’s. I’m about 99% sure there will be a Marshall’s/TJ Maxx/Home Goods in Heaven. Look it up, I think it’s in Revelations.

The Boston Satchel fit the bill for Susie.  She wanted a brightly-colored, easy-to-wear bag that wouldn’t slip off her shoulder.  You can find one like it here. (But you’ll pay less at Marshall’s)

For Mama, I decided to go less practical and more sentimental.  Since she’s an elementary school Media Specialist (that’s a librarian to you library lay people), I ordered her favorite childhood book on Amazon and a vintage copy of a Margaret Wise Brown and Crockett Johnson book. (If you are interested, this Etsy seller was absolutely fabulous!)

To accompany her sweet books, I made a few bookplates.  The first set had Harold and His Purple Crayon featured.

The second set featured another curious and sometimes mischevious little creature… Tater!

Mama LOVED them! I presented them to her over supper at Bonefish on her birthday.  We celebrated Susie’s birthday the day after Thanksgiving (because she had to get back to school) at Rhinehart’s.  If you’re in the Augusta area, you MUST go to Rhinehart’s at least once.  It’s not much to look at but it’s probably my favorite restaurant.

In other news, I got my cast off on Tuesday and I’m now the proud owner of an AirCast.  I’m supposed to be wearing this cast at all times (with the exception of bathing) and walking with crutches for about a week and a half.  I’ll then start walking with no help from the crutches until January 5. I’m a little gunshy right now with putting my foot down.  I’m afraid it’s going to hurt so I haven’t been walking around too much.

Be jealous of my” Storm Trooper goes skiing look.”

At least it gives me less of a cankle than Uggs would.

November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Filed under: Family, Food — sashyjane @ 12:13 pm

Although the most delicious day of the year isn’t until tomorrow, I know I won’t sit in front of a computer to blog about it on Thursday and I certainly don’t know how to schedule a post to appear. Thus, you’re getting your Thanksgiving post today.

I absolutely love this week! My favorite cousins come to town, Susie comes home from school for longer than 24 hours and delicious food abounds.  Tomorrow afternoon, our large extended family will converge on cousins Ross and Judy’s house for Thanksgiving supper (we eat at about 6.) While I’m still relegated to the kids’ table – I’m pretty sure you need a post graduate degree, spouse and at least 2 children to be seated at the adult table – I enjoy taking a dish or two along in an attempt to prove my adulthood.

Last year, I made a super delicious and super easy cranberry cheeseball that I plan to bring again this year.  In addition, Susie and I want to try out the Paula Deen Gingerbread Pumpkin Trifle at Erika’s suggestion.

Cranberry Cheeseball

2 8oz pkgs cream cheese, softened

1/2 c. dried cranberries (can use more if you like)

1 T.  orange zest

1 t.  Garlic salt

1 c. chopped nuts (walnuts are my favorite)

Mix first four ingredients up together in a bowl until cranberries are well-distributed. Form mixture into a ball and roll in chopped nuts. Refrigerate until about 30 minutes before serving. Plate on a cake pedestal and surround with crackers (I like to use the garlic and herb flavored Townhouse Toppers.) Enjoy!  This super easy recipe is no sweat and people love the combination of salty, sweet and savory.  It’s also very handy to have something for guests to gnosh on while the turkey is being prepped for it’s debut.

What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions? Do you go out to eat like Blue Hydrangea? Does your family take a trip somewhere like Blueprint Bliss? Or do you have an intimate dinner with family and friends at home like Eddie and Jaithan? Whatever you’re doing on this day of thankfulness, I want you to know that I’m thankful for each one of you! I’m thankful for your readership, your comments and your helpful suggestions.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

November 12, 2009

Another Special Day

Filed under: Family — sashyjane @ 9:58 am

Today is my (little) big sister and her husband’s first anniversary! Last year, Joy and David Jones were married in Ocho Rios, Jamaica in a small beachside ceremony.  After much pain and heartbreak in both of their pasts, they were brought together at just the right time.  David is an excellent husband to my sister and an excellent step-father to my niece, Emily.  I’m thrilled that he’s part of our family and I’m so thankful that they both give one another the love and respect that marriage was designed for.

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, JOY AND DAVID!

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