Macarons and Bubbly

The first time I tasted a Macaron I was 20. There isn’t much call for these delicate cookies in Leavenworth, so I didn’t partake in one until someone convinced me to buy one while I was in London. At first I wasn’t sure what could be so special about this tiny cookie that I should part with my limited travel funds to try one. Assured that it would be worth it, I took my first bite.

It WAS worth it, and thus began my obsession.

Upon my return to Seattle, I quickly set out to find the best local macarons, so as not to have to wait for my next venture to Europe. I have found a few places that definitely meet my needs, but simply cannot justify the exorbitant price for one cookie more than once every month or two. Thus, the plan was born to learn to make my own! Knowing that it was going to be one tricky cookie, when I came across Cake Envy’s Macarons and Bubbly class, I was in.

Full glasses of bubbly in hand, we got to work 🙂

          IMG_2087

Our instructor demonstrated the process first, pointing out all the little tips and tricks to help us with these finicky cookies. She made it look so easy!

IMG_2088

The color looks so bright before the flower is added.

IMG_2090 IMG_2092

Ours weren’t quite as even or pretty. Alas, practice will only make me better and I’ll get to eat all of my delicious mistakes along the way.

IMG_2091

Time to fill!

IMG_2094

Only about half of our cookies turned out, due to over-mixing the meringue and under-mixing the flour, but I think it went pretty successfully for a first try.

IMG_2096

Armed with a bag of cookies we made and Cake Envy’s macaron recipe, I finished my champagne with the other ladies, chatting and snacking on our treats. We were all very excited about our new found skill and can’t wait to practice in our own kitchens.

IMG_2098

Here goes…

IMG_2101

Crunch…

IMG_2102

Good heavens thats delicious!

IMG_2103 IMG_2104

Now I just have to make these in my apartment. Yikes!

signature

Life Lately

It’s been a busy week. On one hand, i’m thrilled for a break this week (laundry needs to be done), but i’ve had a pretty fun past few days, so it’s always a little sad when so many great events finish up.

Here’s a peek 😉

My dear friend Y turned 30. What better age to have a big bash, complete with bedazzled ball gowns and an adult appropriate piñata (supplied by me)! Just be sure not to put glass bottles in the piñata.

photo 1 (2)

My birthday was last weekend too, and boy did we jam out to some karaoke!! Not gonna lie, T rocked some Johnny Cash (and a little Katy Perry).

photo 2 (4)

I volunteered at an event this past week. If you ever get married, I highly recommend the Get Hitched Give Hope Gala. They have some fantastic wedding packages available for auction, and all the money raised goes to an awesome charity. During our down time, the organizers suggested we partake in the delicious cocktails and appetizers (Ha, like they really had to twist our arms)!

photo 3 (3)

I also attended a Junior League event. Now i’m not a member of the Junior League, but I have a friend who is, and when she mentioned that their annual bachelor auction hosts were Jason and Molly Mesnick, I jumped at the chance to snag her extra ticket! I’ve been a fan of the Bachelor for years now, it’s my guilty TV pleasure (I don’t even feel guilty a little 😉 ) That aside, the event was a hoot!

photo 4 (2)

I’m working on a new hairstyle…. It’s a variation on a mohawk. I sort of love it, but I can’t wait until the length gets a bit longer in back. Thoughts?photo 5 (1) photo 2 (5)

Lately I’ve been….

Listening to– Christmas Music. I manage to hold off until November 1st each year, though I usually start craving those joyous tunes in October.

Watching– Parks and Recreation…. Aziz Ansari makes me giggle 😉

Eating– Whole wheat carrot applesauce muffins. Not kidding, they are amazing, and taste way better than I was expecting them to. Recipe found here:

http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2013/10/25/recipe-whole-wheat-carrot-applesauce-muffins/

Enjoying– That glorious fall chill. I finally put on my mittens this week and it was wonderful. Bonus, I hear there is snow on my parents side of the mountains. I believe there will be a snow angel or two in my Thanksgiving future!

Looking forward to– Thanksgiving! I have been scouring pinterest for recipes for my assigned Thanksgiving duties. I’m planning on an apple pie (my usual), a sweet potato bourbon bundt cake, and an appetizer of some sort (any recommendations).

Happy Monday!

signature

27 for 27

I turned 27 yesterday.

It was an excellent birthday celebrated with friends, rocking out to karaoke, eating trophy cupcakes, and drinking delicious cocktails.

This past month, as I reflected on my life at 26 and thought about turning 27, lots of things came to mind that I wanted to do, accomplish, and even buy during the next year. Now I know lots of people make lists of 30 things to do before they turn 30, but I don’t feel like waiting that long. So I compiled a list of 27 things to do, while I’m 27. It’s a smorgasbord things, some of which I think will be easily attainable, some of which are going to require some serious effort on my part. Honestly though, I do my best work under pressure, and need to have goals with deadlines in order to be my happiest. Who knows, if this goes well, maybe it will become a yearly tradition for me. So here it is, my 27 for 27 list.

1) Hit under a 2 hour half marathon time. I’m always just over 2 hours, perhaps if I actually train for one I can do it.

2) Go sailing for the first time. Never been, always wanted to go, and have a real reason to wear my Sperry’s.

3) Pay off another one of my dreaded student loans. Let’s all cross our fingers that this one actually happens.

4)Host a 1920’s murder mystery dinner. Who doesn’t love a good costume party?

5) Start posting on my blog once a week. When I started this, my initial goal was to post twice month, I think it might be time to step it up a bit. 😉

6) Visit another country. Hopefully it will be Hong Kong again as I feel like there was still so much for me to discover/eat there, but i’d go just about anywhere.

7) Buy my first pair of Christian Louboutin heels. I’m thinking this will be my birthday present to myself when I turn 28.

8) Become a certified Zumba instructor. I fell in love with Zumba about 2 years ago. I realized I needed to become an instructor when I started mentally choreographing routines in my head at work about 9 months ago.

9) Get my first aid/CPR certification. This goes along with the above goal, but I think it is useful knowledge to have for anything.

10) Construct a wedding dress, and have it sold at a consignment wedding shop. I’ve been dabbling in the bridal design industry for awhile, and I think it’s time to test one of my designs in a real shop.

11) Go paddle boarding. Never tried it, totally want to. (but not until next summer…. brrrrr)

12) Take a ballet class series. I’ve always admired the strength and grace of ballet dancers, and it’s never to late to learn a new skill right?

13) Visit K in New York. This WILL happen, I miss my friend too much not to.

14) Attend my family reunion in Chicago next summer. This WILL also happen, and i’m excited to visit Chicago for the first time.

15) Have my brown heels fixed. I have this lovely pair of chunky brown leather heels that I wore into the ground, and then broke the strap on them. I WILL have them given new life this year.

16) Do a photo shoot of the bridal gown I make. This is contingent on me completing #10.

17) Get to a certain financial goal in my savings account. Boring I know, but practical.

18) Complete 10 new pinterest inspired recipes or diy projects. You know you do it too, you pin with the best of intentions, but does that lemon white chocolate strawberry layer cake really ever get made?

19) Learn to bake French Macarons. This one is actually already in the works, as I am signed up for a class at the end of November. I’m a wee bit excited!

20) Get my second tattoo. Don’t worry mom, It’s going to be small and I bet you won’t even notice it. 😉

21) Dye my hair a new color. I’m thinking a nice dark auburn color.

22) Set up some sort of Roth IRA or 401K. Retirement plans are responsible right?

23) Refinish one piece of furniture. I have all of these lovely ideas, now it’s time to complete one.

24) Take a ariel silk class. Just another circus skill to add to my repertoire. What can I say, my elementary school P.E. class was oddly focused on circus skills. (I’m not complaining, they’ve come in handy at odd times in life).

25) Take the BUSMAT. Who wants to be my study buddy?

26) Go to at least two concerts. Perhaps I’ll trek out to Watershed this year, or maybe Sasquatch again, or maybe I’ll stick to concerts in/around Seattle. Either way, I need more concerts in my life.

27) Start taking more pictures of my various projects to put up on the blog!

Realistically, I don’t think i’m going to finish this whole list, or at least, I won’t be mad I myself if I miss a few. But I’m certainly going to try!

Here’s to you 27!

signature