Happy weekend, my friends! Today is Family Picture Day. My family hasn't had a professional photo taken (outside of my bro's wedding) since I was in 4th Grade. Needless to say, it was time for some fresh cheese. This morning, the parents, bro, sis-in-law, their son, and I laughed and smiled our prettiest at the beautiful Dallas Arboretum during our photo shoot with the incredible talented Melissa Darst of Melissa Darst Photo. Melissa is a friend of mine, and I am honored to feature her work on An Awesome A Day! Here are just a few of my favorites from Melissa. She has the patience of a saint and is extremely well-priced. A mom of a 2-year-old and an 8-month old, she knows how to capture kids, families, teens, couples, parents and pets, while adding her creative vision to all the shoots. I keep checking her blog to see some of the shots from our session. I'll be sure to post them asap.
Rike your bike poster, from Etsy Okay, okay, so this isn't about an online retailer, but there's nothing more adorable than a happy person in flip-flops on a bike, cruising around the neighborhood. And that's exactly where I have been lately (does that mean I am adorable? I'll take it.), pedaling in style. And on the heels of a beautiful long weekend, I am strongly recommending you GET ON IT and get yourself (and your tandem bike partner if you are so inclined) rolling! For less than $200, summer never seemed so fun. Plus, throw on one of the handy baskets listed below, and save the gas to the market or Starbucks. Your calves will thank you! (Does this mean if I ride over to Society Bakery that it's a washout? Again, I'll take it.)
Here's my bike. Her name is Betty. Because according to Lynn, "Every bike needs a name." The best less-than-$160 I have EVER spent. And if you don't see this in your local Walmart, the Site-to-Store feature online is a great deal: free shipping when the item is shipped to the store. I even asked nicely and the guys in the back assembled it for free. Score! Order it now!
Here's Lynn's bike, Shirlz. Shirlz is a new addition to the neighborhood and has immediately become BFF with Betty. Be a Shirlz, order now.
Next, you must have a helmet (it's the law!) but a true must-have is an adorable basket. I recommend the Bell Quick Release basket at Academy, but check out this number. Yes, it's $69, but it's awesome. Get one here, and I'll be jealous.
Shawn Johnson and her adorable partner, Mark Ballas, totally rocked it on Dancing With The Stars! Shawn's amazing sportsmanship at the Olympics paid off in awesome karma and a hot dance partner. Here's the (hopefully soon-to-be-real-life) couple killing it during the freestyle competition for a perfect score of 30. Congrats on the win, Shawn. A gold medal and a big ass shiny disco ball trophy. What a year!
Last night I whipped up a quick, impromptu, Peach Sangria. It was killer! I love sangria, especially with white wine. It's so light and delicious, and feels so much better to drink than a beer when it's warm out and I am wearing a skirt. I don't know, it's like, the feminine way to drink...or something.
Anyhoo, I have made a few sangrias, but this one was great and not too sweet. Here's what I used.
2 bottles cheap (2 for $10) Savignon Blanc about 8-10oz Peach Nectar maybe 1/3 cup sugar, to taste 3 peaches, sliced
That's it! It will be gone in no time. I found an organic Peach Nectar at Newflower Market and I think that helped tone down some of sugary sweetness out of it. Finally, I poured it into my favorite spigot jug, and voila! Peach sangria, ready to enjoy, all spring and summer long.
A spigot jug is a must-have for all your sangrias, lemonades, and that delicious cucumber water I never seem to make but always enjoy. I can't remember where I found mine, but here's an adorable one at Crate and Barrel.