A Thousand Threads

Month: November, 2011

{Wedding Film Wednesday}

I just love this sweet super 8 wedding film by Modern 8 Films.  Dave and Shelley’s DIY wedding was the perfect little day, and Modern 8 couldn’t have captured it better.

Dave + Shelly: Highlights from Modern 8 Films via Wedding Chicks.

Venue: Temecula Farmhouse / Photography: Sunday Romance / Videography: Modern 8 Films / Gown and Bridesmaid Dresses: Lovey by Isha

{Real Weddings} Kelsey & Theron’s Hometown Heart

I love the holidays, but sometimes they can be hard.  I make it home to Oregon at least once a year, but I rarely make it for the holidays and I miss my beautiful coast.

This wedding, though…

This wedding is the perfect one to cheer me up.  I’m still in awe of the fact that, by total coincidence, it came across my desk… courtesy of the lovely Jamie Zanotti, who hails from my hometown!  I was so excited to see Jamie’s gorgeous pictures and reminisce about Coos Bay.  She is the sweetest, and Kelsey and Theron’s wedding could not be more perfect.  I just love the beautiful simplicity of the day… and that view of the North Bend bridge?  To die for.

Thank you so much for brightening my holidays, Jamie!  What an absolutely gorgeous celebration.

Here’s a little more about the day, straight from Jamie herself:

Kelsey hails from North Bend, Oregon but now lives on the East Coast.  She and Theron planned their wedding from afar, and it was to be a simple backyard affair… but Kelsey’s girlfriends wouldn’t hear of it.  They rallied together and created an elegant event.  When Kelsey’s plane came in, they took her down to the beach to collect sand and beach grass, which they paired with flowers from a gardener friend’s yard, and the results were gorgeous!  The original venue fell through, and family friends generously offered their property so the wedding would not have to be delayed.  Their home is nestled in the hills overlooking the historic North Bend Bridge (over Coos Bay), and matched with Kelsey’s girlfriends’ genius, the wedding was fabulous.

Photographer: Jamie Zanotti Photography / Caterer: Black Market Gourmet / Dress Store: BHLDN / Tuxedo and Mens Attire: J. Crew

Welcome Back!

Carter & Cook Event Co.

We had an action-packed holiday break.  It may have started out a little hectic (with loads of holiday traffic and a little late-night pie baking) but it was all worth it the next day.  Dinner was delicious and I was actually kind of proud of my pies — particularly the pumpkin.

I made a simple graham cracker crust and filled it with Paula Deen’s super-amazing filling (two words: cream cheese) then I topped the whole thing with a generous helping of whipping cream and a little dusting of cinnamon.  It was pretty and (thanks to Paula) super good.  I wish I had a picture, but you’ll just have to trust me — I think I’ll be sticking with this particular recipe for future holiday goodness.

We had a nice early Thanksgiving dinner, complete with a Singapore Sling, and spent a cozy, relaxing day recovering at home.  The next morning we managed to wake up nice and early for a short run (success!) and headed to Morgantown, WV to meet up with friends and celebrate the 116-year-old backyard brawl (WVU vs. Pitt).  The best news of the night is very much a toss-up between the WVU win and the deliciousness that is the cheese sticks at the Beanery.

The next day Mark showed me around his old campus and we visited the breathtaking overlook at Coopers Rock… then squeezed in a little more football (on the radio this time — because there is no way we could miss civil war) then realized on the way home that our very favorite pie shop ever, located in Hancock, MD and previously called Hepburn’s, has reopened.  It has a new owner and a new look – no more big red barn boo – but the same baker!!  We brought home a drool-worthy lemon crunch pie and proceeded to eat way too much… again.

Sunday brought a longer run that (try as it might) won’t begin to make up for the oh-so-serious amount of eating we did, but might do a little to help us train for the marathon we signed up for a couple of weeks ago (because we weren’t busy enough).

But most of all Sunday brought the first bits of Christmas to our home.  We haven’t gone to pick out a tree, but two tiny little reindeer have made themselves comfortable on our dining room table.  Next, we’ll need the perfect wreath for the door and one of the many gorgeous advent calendars I’m currently coveting… I might even try a button garland like the one above.

I can’t wait to finish up our decorating, bake holiday treats, wrap presents and watch Love Actually.  My Pinterest is already beginning to fill… Christmas is here!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Braedon Flynn via Grey Likes Weddings

My Grandfather’s Singapore Sling

The Singapore Sling is a funny drink. Order it up on your next vacation and you’re likely to receive something that closely resembles a Mai Tai… a slice of pineapple, maybe even a tiny umbrella. But the history of the drink is much more complex.

It is generally agreed that the Singapore Sling was created by Ngiam Tong Boon at the Long Bar of the Raffles Hotel in Singapore sometime in the early 20th century, but that’s where the agreement ends. While the Raffles still serves a version of the drink, and proudly displays the safe in which Mr. Ngiam locked away his precious recipe books, they admit that the original recipe was lost long ago. The current version was formulated by Ngiam’s nephew during the 1970s… but a quick search will reveal that even the “original” remains far from the only version.

The Singapore Sling has been interpreted and re-interpreted many times over, but to me, my grandfather’s will always be the one.

I wish I had a beautiful story to share with you about my grandfather’s holiday recipe… how it evolved through the years to become the very best representation of the drink. The truth is, it might not be the best, but the very sight and smell of it reminds me of the holidays, even if I wasn’t allowed a taste until well after I’d moved away from home.

Today, many of my family’s longstanding holiday traditions have faded, a sad side-effect of living so far from each other (and one that I swear every year I will remedy) but the sling remains. Wherever we all might be on Thanksgiving and Christmas, it just isn’t the holidays without this drink.

… and maybe a little Tom Waits, but that’s another story altogether.

Singapore Sling

1/2 Lime
1 oz Gin
1/2 oz Sloe Gin
1 oz Cherry Brandy
7-up

Muddle 1/2 a lime in a rocks glass, fill halfway with ice. Combine gin, sloe gin, and cherry brandy in a shaker with ice; shake for 10 seconds. Strain into glass and top with 7-up.

Meaghan & Mike’s Wedding Film

If you’re not already in love with yesterday’s couple and their unbelievably gorgeous garden wedding… you will be.  Their videographer, Jimmy Wilderman, was kind enough to send over this beautiful film that really showcases what a cute and fun couple they are.  If you have just a few minutes, it’s definitely worth the watch.

Meaghan + Mike from Jimmy Wilderman on Vimeo.

Thank you Jimmy for sharing!

{Real Weddings} Meaghan & Mike’s DIY Garden Party

Happy Monday!  Just a few days to Thanksgiving and if you’re anything like me you’re running around pulling every last minute detail together.  I’m not even cooking dinner this year — just pies — but still, it still feels like there is so much to do.

I can only imagine what the days leading up to the big day will be like… and when I see a gorgeous wedding like this one it really drives the idea home.  I think of all the time and energy it takes to incorporate such beautiful, personal details.  But in the end, the work is so worth it because your day really reflects you.

There is no doubt that Meghan and Mike’s wedding is a reflection of their personalities.  They made most of the details themselves… including the jars of peach jam they gave as favors (no secret how much I love handmade food favors, I know).  They even used a passage from The Velveteen Rabbit in their ceremony.

Photographer: Under Grace Photo / Reception Venue: Pere Marquette Lodge / Dress: Novella Bridal / Jewelry: Lordo’s Diamonds / Videographer: Jimmy Wilderman

Quiet Sundays

“Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one.”
~Eleanor Roosevelt

Jonas Peterson

Friday Link Love

Glen Proebstel

Okay, I don’t know if this is hitting anyone else like a ton of bricks… but Thanksgiving is oh, about six days away.  Somehow it really managed to sneak up on me this year.  I’m not sure how.  My Pinterest is already beginning to fill with trees and lights and wrapping paper… but somehow it still feels like October.  Somewhere in between the emails and ideas and eBay purchases (all for the wedding) I forgot to prepare for the holidays.

Which is not to say that I’m not ready to bake some pies (my meager contribution to this year’s dinner) but more to say that, mentally, I’m not sure I’m ready for it to be Thanksgiving.

When I was young, Thanksgiving was always an event.  Family came from out of town and my grandparents welcomed them with a warm home and a huge meal.  We dressed up, we caught up, the adults drank singapore slings (silly, but my grandpa makes an amazing singapore sling — in a fashion that looks much less like the Caribbean and much more like the holidays — and it’s one of my most cherished traditions).

Since I left home, Thanksgiving has somehow managed to slip farther and farther from the agenda.  My family is spread all over the country, and my sister has a large family of her own.  Since the holiday break is a short one we don’t usually travel, and everyone ends up celebrating in their own separate way.  Sadly, because of this, a lot of the sentiment is lost.

We still have a celebration.  Mark’s family live close by.  Their home is warm and they always have a huge, delicious meal… none of that has changed.  But I miss my family the most this time of year.

My mom mentioned that we might need to think of a new tradition that brings us all together… and I think she’s right.  This needs to be done.  Had Thanksgiving not been so sneaky this year, creeping up behind me like that, I might have managed to brainstorm a few ideas already… but, not so much.

Any creative solutions you employ to get your own family together for the holidays?  Or have you settled into your own unique traditions?

If you still live close, give your mom a big hug for me at Thanksgiving this year, and don’t forget to take the time to appreciate just how lucky you are.

Here are a few things I’m loving…

Like I said, I’ve given in to the Christmas bug… come on, it’s only one week early, and look at these.  They are amazing.

I want to go to the Portland Bazaar — and if you do, I hope you’ll tell me all about it.  I want to live vicariously.

Great advice on blogging from Kat.

This chair, after… yes please.

Necessary.

Do you know how beautiful you would look on my feet?

Super cute and easy DIY glittered flatware.

Speaking of Thanksgiving.

Donald & Shirley’s Long Lost Love

Giddy.  I am giddy right now over these unbelievably beautiful engagement shots.  Whether in the city or among the wildflowers, Donald and Shirley’s love for each other is clear… no wonder they were able to find each other again and fall in love long after they first met in kindergarten.

As totally amazing as their engagement shots are, though, their story manages to be even better!

Here’s the story straight from Shirley, courtesy of their amazing photographer

Donald and I met at the lovely age of 5. It’s true! But even though I would love to say that we’re elementary school sweethearts, the truth is that it didn’t all fall into place for us quite so early. We met in kindergarden, Mrs. Bower’s class, and lets just say that we had differing interests. I was the epitome of a girly-girl, and Donald, a man’s man. I was into nail polish, while he favored dirt bikes. As we moved through the early years of elementary school we became friends, and I was hooked. I mean, who could resist that smile? But as Donald remained oblivious to the female population, I sheepishly stuck with my group of girls. Our second grade teacher may have had an eye toward the future when casting the roles for a class play. Donald Hatcher: Santa Clause, Shirley Pérez: Mrs. Clause. (What great memories God allowed us to make together!)

As we grew older and I moved to another school, Donald & I drifted our separate ways for a several years only to be reunited in high school at church. This time I was the oblivious one while Donald admired timidly. Soon he got up the courage to conjure up a plan to win me over. By now you know that it worked!

Everything came full circle when Donald proposed at Mollie Ray Elementary School, the place that we met almost 18 years ago. Of course, he had to hoax me into getting to the school in the first place. Donald and his mom had visited the school a few days prior to plan out the proposal. They met with the principal and decided on a day and time. I was told that there was a special Saturday meeting where we could say hi to some of our old elementary school teachers. Besides that, Donald advised me to meet with the principal in an effort to get a job since I recently graduated. I reluctantly agreed to come along on their trip, pretty unsure about the whole thing.

The next thing I knew, I was strolling along memory lane. Donald and I began to share the memories we had of our younger years. We remembered eating lunch together in our classrooms, dancing to “Thriller” on stage, going on a field trip to the petting zoo, and competing against each other in timed multiplication tests. (He always won.) We even remembered a time where our class had pet snails. Living up to our typical personalities, Donald was fascinated by them while I was completely grossed out. We laughed at how our teacher had to force me to even touch the slimy snails.

As we walked up to the door of our kindergarden classroom, I peeked through the window to see the room that we shared so long ago when I felt Donald grab my hand and spin me around. He was on his knee–and I was confused! I remember my mind racing. Is he being serious? Did he plan all of this? Is that why we’re here? When I saw the ring in his hand I was speechless.

He began to speak. “Shirley, this is where it all started, and I want our story to continue for the rest of our lives…” That was all that I heard. I was so excited! I couldn’t even focus on what he was saying.

Photographer: Kt Crabb Photography