Thursday, June 28, 2018

Wedding Planning Fun







I am back in Florida, after 8 days in Michigan and wish I could share everything with you, but there have to be some surprises left for the wedding day. I will be writing about my trip in two parts, and this first post will be about our time in Grand Rapids visiting the church, venue and a few vendors. And, a few bonus photos of a fun night in Ann Arbor. My next post will be about the two bridal showers - both just lovely.

When Megan arrived in Michigan, we had a full two days planned, beginning with the final fitting of her wedding gown. All I can say is that it is beautiful and she will be beautiful. There definitely will be tears shed. We then drove to Grand Rapids, checked into a hotel and spent a few hours with computers and lists in front of us, making decisions on things like table linen color, place setting design, and all kinds of other small, but important details. Of course, we had a glass or two of wine to help the process.

In the morning, we visited the church, which I had only seen photos of. It is simply beautiful, (those doors!) both inside and outside. We then headed to the venue, which I also had not visited and it was everything I imagined and more. It is perfect for them and I think our guests will love it too. It won't be your typical ballroom event. We toasted our day together with a delicious sparkling rose and then walked the short distance to the hotel, where the bridal party and most of our guests will be staying. There is a beautiful outside bar on the river that runs through downtown, that will be a great gathering spot. We then had a cake tasting and an appointment with the florist. She has picked amazing vendors and meeting with them made me feel so much better, realizing they know what they are doing, this isn't their first wedding and everything will be just fine.

Melissa joined us for dinner that night, along with Megan's fiancé and his parents. We had a drink after dinner at one of the craft beer breweries Grand Rapids is known for and headed back to our hotel to be rested for the first bridal shower the next day.




Skipping a bit ahead in my story, after the first shower the next day, we all drove from Grand Rapids to Ann Arbor, checked into another hotel and then headed to dinner. Ann Arbor (the bride and groom's college town) is such a vibrant city, with so many great restaurant and nightlife choices. After dinner at a new to us Mexican restaurant, we made stops at a few outdoor bars, since it was a perfect summer night in Michigan. At this point we were joined by another bridesmaid and my niece and her boyfriend.

So much fun and I haven't written about the main events. When you have a daughter, you can't help but think ahead to attending her bridal shower someday. Both were as lovely and joyous as I ever imagined.

Happy Thursday!

P.S. Thank you for all the well wishes for my mother. She is doing fine in rehab and I am happy I was able to arrive early and help my sister with hospital visits and getting her settled. We are hoping she will be able to be up and walking, but with Alzheimer's in the mix, honestly, it's going to be difficult.


Monday, June 18, 2018

Weekend in Photos



Saturday night walk with Cooper


Sunday morning view


Crockpot Chicken Fajitas


Margaritas just go with a Mexican menu


It was just my husband and I this Father's Day weekend and we stuck around the house for the most part. We are getting into the hottest part of summer here in Florida and if it is not early morning or near sunset, it's best to stay in the air conditioning. Or the pool.

When I asked my hubby what he wanted to do on Father's Day, his only request was to stay home and watch the U.S. Open. So we did that and I cooked fajitas and made margaritas. He received phone calls from the girls and I gave him a gift card to Top Golf in Tampa, so there is a fun outing in our future.

If the blog is quiet this week, it's because I am flying to Michigan tomorrow and will be busy, busy. The good: at the end of the week, Megan and I have appointments at the florist, the venue, the cake baker and for the final fitting of her wedding gown. And, I get to see the venue and the church, in person, for the first time. On Saturday and Sunday there are back to back wedding showers in her honor, in two different cities and we are so excited. The not so good: I'm flying back a few days early to help with my parents. My mother has had a bit of a set back, with a broken hip and the resulting surgery. Luckily, they are in assisted living now, and it wasn't quite the panic it could have been if they were still at home.

Happy Monday from the airport - I'll have a lot to post when I return!


Thursday, June 14, 2018

4 Ingredient Applesauce Pancakes




I am always looking for quick and healthy ways to make a delicious breakfast. My preference is something sweet, rather than savory, but since I'm a diabetic, counting carbs is a necessity, if I want to stay on track. This recipe required a little experimentation, but in the end, I was happy with the result.

Pancakes are something I love to eat and also cook. I love traditional buttermilk pancakes, but lately, am drawn to the possibilities of healthier versions, like whole grain. These applesauce pancakes use oatmeal and while you could put the oats in a food processor to get a smooth oat flour, I prefer the natural texture.

My first experiment just used 1/2 cup oats, 1 egg and 1/2 cup applesauce for a try at three ingredients. They tasted good, but the texture was not what I hoped. I wanted a pancake, not an oatcake. So on attempt two, I added in 3 tablespoons of flour (I used white, but whole wheat would work great). It was just the thing needed to make these pancakes the perfect texture to easily flip.

This recipe makes 3 small pancakes, so breakfast for one. I added some blueberries on the top, but didn't add any syrup and didn't miss it at all. Since all the ingredients are pantry staples, this is a recipe I can make again and again.


4 Ingredient Applesauce Pancakes

1/2 cup oatmeal

3 T flour

1 egg, beaten

1/2 cup applesauce

In a small bowl, mix together all ingredients. (Add a pinch of cinnamon if you like)

In a medium non stick skillet, melt 1 tsp butter, then divide batter to make 3 small pancakes.

Cook for 4 minutes on each side.

Serve with syrup or fresh fruit.

Happy Thursday!


Another recipe you might like: 3 Ingredient Banana Pancakes


{ Linking with these friends}

Savvy Southern Style

Have a Daily Cup

Between Naps on the Porch

21 Rosemary Lane



Thursday, June 7, 2018

Summer Reading List



Books for the pool, books for the beach, books for vacation. Summer reading lists are essential for finding the perfect book for those times when a book in your bag is as important as sunscreen, sunglasses, a water bottle and lipstick. The books on my summer reading lists are two types. Novels by three authors I love and know that I will enjoy. And, new offerings from three mystery series where the characters are familiar and the settings are as diverse as a rural Amish community, World War Two London and the city of San Francisco.


From author of Under The Tuscan Sun (one of my favorite books)


I can't think of an Anna Quindlen book I have not enjoyed. Her writing style is wonderful and so honest.


Another book by Paula McLain about a Hemingway wife. This time the setting is wartime Spain.



Welcome back Chief of Police Kate Burkholder, Her Majesty's Spy Maggie Hope and P.I. Sharon McCone.

Happy Summer Reading!


Monday, June 4, 2018

June Summer Lovin' Questions



Venice Farmer's Market - less crowded in the summer


Summer in Florida means one thing - it's hot! But, there really is an added bonus with all the snowbirds gone until the season starts again. No crowds in restaurants, no crowds at the beach and really just a wonderful few months ahead. Linking with The Blended Blog for some this or that summer questions.



1. Walk or Bike Ride? I walk almost every day and I love it.

2. Favorite Picnic Food? Brie, French bread, grapes and a good Chardonnay.

3. Pool or Lake? I love the pool, but if given the chance, I love to be out in a boat on a pretty Michigan lake.

4. Favorite Flavor of ice cream? Key Lime Pie at Venice Creamery. Tart and pieces of graham cracker crust.

5. Ice Cream Cone or in a Dish? Sugar cone.

6. Flip Flops or Slides? I live in flip flops pretty much year around in Florida.

7. Jean Shorts or Jean Capris? Don't own either and no plans to buy. I'm a skort/skirt girl.

8. Favorite summer Fruit? Fresh strawberries to make Strawberry Shortcake.

9. Corn on the Cob or Cut Off the Cob? On the cob. Light on the butter, heavy on the salt.

10. Favorite summertime song? Kid Rock - All Summer Long

11. Favorite summertime activity? Used to be gardening and golf, but now I do both year around!

12. Favorite Berry? Strawberry, Blueberry, Raspberry or Blackberry? Blueberries (love blueberry pancakes)

13. Bikini’s, tankini’s or one pieces? Tankinis with a short skirt. I like to mix and match.

14. Dresses or Skirts? Skirts for golf and casual wear and sun dresses for going out.

15. One Word to describe Summer? Endless :-) (Florida description)


Happy Monday!


Michigan ➡️ Florida
family, books, gardening, palm trees, the beach, golf, up north, msu football, detroit tigers, walking with my dog, trying new recipes, musicals, BBC, martinis, yoga, lilly

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