Monday, June 21, 2010

One Year OIder and Wiser Too (...and our winners!)

Happy Birthday...
to ME!

For as long as I can remember my birthdays have been celebrated with big parties.  I invite all of my friends.  We play with the parachute.  We play the shoe game.  We eat cake (usually that I ended up making).  This year was different.  I didn't want a big party.  I didn't want to awkwardly explain why we're all outside playing with a parachute.  (Although I think we're doing that tonight with some friends--haha--so the tradition will live on, I suppose.  And I'm glad about that.)  I didn't want the stress of who to invite and who not to invite.  And, furthermore, I graduated from college a couple of years ago and, while I still have friends around, a lot of them have moved away.  That's what happens when you marry someone your own age and he's two years behind you in school because he was a good boy and went on a mission.  Anyway, this is all a very long-winded way of saying that we just had a couple of little celebrations this year.  And I feel good about that.

On Friday night we had a very little party with a few of our friends who we usually get together with on the weekends to play games.  Yes, we are nerds like that.  Be we all like it.  I had decided a week or so before that I wanted to have a carrot cake for my birthday this year, and that I wanted to make it from scratch.  So, I did.  And Bryan helped.

The cakes turned out perfectly.  And they came out of the pans perfectly.  Which never, ever happens to me.  Ever.

 (Thanks to Bomanda for letting us borrow her magic cake pans.)

Then I made cream cheese frosting and frosted the cake.  For the topping, I baked some chopped up pecans and sprinkled them around the edges (umm... like in the picture at the beginning of the "Cakes" section of my cookbook.  So original, right?).


Is your mouth watering yet?
Because it should be.

Here I am (in all my blurry glory--oops!) with my lovely little carrot cake.  
It was a total success.  I am so proud.

I kind of like our little hodgepodge of old birthday candles.
Almost like I planned it.
Almost Martha Stewart.
But better.

Twenty four here I come!

Bryan and Andrea, thanks for lighting my birthday cake.  
Even though it took a few matches.

Happy birthday to me!
Happy birthday to me!
Happy birthday to me-ee!
Happy birthday to me!

Got 'em all out in one blow.

I told Bryan he's going to have to have pink and yellow birthday candles on his cake next month.
Because these ones were definitely too small to be used again.
I guess that's what happens when it takes a long time to light all your candles.

Mmmm.  I think it's safe to say that this is the best birthday cake I've ever had.  It was soooo, so yummy.  Just the right mixture of moist, fresh, made-from-scratch cake with lots of spice and flavor, topped off with creamy, rich cream cheese frosting and crunchy baked pecans.  Sooo, so yummy.

And thanks to Lance for being patient and letting me snap a few pictures of his piece of cake before he could dig in.  Actually, thanks to everyone for being patient while I took a million pictures of the cake.

These two are so good at games.
I try to pretend to be.
But they are always about twelve steps ahead of my logic.
Uhh... and they usually win.

These two are so nice.
And so hilarious.
And so from Oregon.
They feed us meals they've never made before.
They eat stale ice cream with us.
They make me happy.

And here we are just being our regular old selves.
Bryan in one of his D.I. shirts.
And curly hair.
And hyper smile.
Me with my hair pulled back in a pony tail.
Stuffing my face.
And loving it.

Yesterday, on my actual birthday, Lisa (Bryan's awesome sister) came over for brunch.  Doesn't it feel classy just to say the word brunch?  Yes.  And, speaking of classy, Lisa brought me these beautiful peonies for my birthday.
Aren't they gorgeous?  What a way to ring in being 24.
Beautiful, lush, feminine, and so fresh and pretty.  And so big! 
I had to take a picture of this vase to show my good friend Alex that I finally have flowers big enough to use in the beautiful vase she gave me for Christmas back when we were sophomores in college.  Thanks Alex!  And thanks Lisa for the beautiful flowers!  Oh, and Lisa also gave me some rockin' socks, but no picture of those.  Sorry.  Thanks though Lisa!

My Nana and Granddad sent me this charming little rooster figurine.  I absolutely love it.  My Nana said one of her close friends gave it to her years ago and that she sent it to me because she thought it would fit right in here in my red kitchen.  Thank you Nana and Granddad!  It fits in perfectly.  You're the best!

Oh, and here's a picture that'll give you an idea of how big my little rooster is.  :)  I love him.

What did Heavenly Father give me for my birthday?

Perfect weather.  So warm and fresh and wonderful.  And, now that I'm looking at this picture I realize just how perfect it was--I was born in 86!  Woot woot!

My friend Sarah dropped off this awesome fabric (and some healthy trail mix that I forgot to take a picture of) while we were at church.  Thanks Sarah!  She knows me so well.  :)  Perhaps that has something to do with knowing each other our whole lives.  And going on walks every day.  Well, almost every day.  :)

Bryan's gift was perfect.  Something I wanted, but that I never would have bought for myself.  This movie is absolutely wonderful.  It was available to watch for free online a while back, and then it wasn't there anymore.  And I've really wanted to watch it since then.  And he even watched part of it with me yesterday, even though it was Father's Day too.  Oh, and Bryan also gave me the game Wizard on Friday night.  He gave it to me early so we could play it with our friends.  But I forgot to take a picture of it.

And, lastly, Bryan even did (some of) the dishes yesterday.  Even though it was Father's Day.  He's the best.  He makes being 24 fun.  He makes me happy every day of the year.

Well, now that the party's over, I guess I better leave you all with a couple of party favors.  After all, that's what you all came for, right?  Well then, I am pleased to announce that our winners are (via because I was going to do something way cuter but, in the end, decided I have a lot of other things to do with my time... such as finish washing the dishes... or eating breakfast)...

1. #26 Lisa* who said,

Well it's my birthday tomorrow so of course I'd like to win:) And a very happy birthday to you!  I'm a follower.

Happy birthday to you too, Lisa!  I promise I didn't rig this, but I think it's totally awesome that you won these great presents for your birthday.  Woot wooooot!

*Lisa, you have two days to get your e-mail address to me.  Otherwise I'll have to give your prize away to someone else!

2. #67 Emma who said,

Hello sweet Katie - I just Tweeted about your fabulous giveaway via tw33tmarie! Tweet Tweet!

tw33tmarie Enter to win an ADORABLE Ruby Lou Doll pattern! Hurry!


Congratulations ladies!

And thanks to everyone who entered and sent me all the birthday wishes!  It's been so fun!

And, finally, a HUGE thanks to 
Abby of Sew Much Ado for giving away two Ruby Lou Doll Patterns 
and to Holly of Cherry Lane Textiles for giving away two awesome scrap packs.  
Thank you so much ladies!

Have a great day everyone!


Unknown said...

Hello sweet Katie! I'm so excited to see that I have won the dolly pattern! Woohoo!

Thank you for sharing your b-day photos with us. Looks like you had an amazing time surrounded by those who love you!


Polly @ Pieces by Polly said...

Glad you had such a nice birthday. Your cake looks delicious...and your ribbon cake is cute.

Patricia said...

What great pictures of all your birthday celebrations! So glad you and Bryan had a wonderful weekend together. Sounds like a perfect birthday!

SteffiD said...

Oh gosh, that cake looks AMAZING!! I hope your birthday was Fantabulous!!

(Since you've posted the recipe for the cake, you should give us the recipe for the cream cheese icing, too!!!)

I'm so glad God gave you the perfect day for such an occasion. Isn't He just great? Also that you got to spend so much time with your friends is a blessing :)

Sylvia Louise said...

Okay, that cake was SO DELICIOUS. So good. I used to not consider myself a carrot cake fan--those days are GONE.

I'm glad you guys try all those untried recipes with us. I think you're probably the only people I really trust to eat my new cooking attempts (which I guess could be good or bad, depending on how you look at it).

In honor of your birthday yesterday, I'm raising the roof (I know you can't see it, but know that it was done). Woot woot!

Kathy Haynie said...

Yes, my mouth is watering. I love the little rooster and the beautiful peonies...sad my gift didn't get there yet. So glad you had such a happy day, and congrats to the giveaway winners!

alee said...

I am so glad you finally got to use that vase...I knew it would come in handy someday! I hope you get our present in the mail soon- it was a really weird experience at the post office mailing it and so I eventually just stuck some stamps on and said a little prayer that it would get there! :) Glad you had a happy day!

alee said...
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Attilio said...

hippy barthday to you...hope your all your days are just as great as your day looked.

loved your rooster, i have one too, exactly like that. got it in portugal when i worked there for a year. so cute.

ps your cake looks yumyum. i think i'll bake one tomorrow ;-))

Nancy said...

Peonies and carrot cake? Happy birthday indeed!