Anyone notice this trend that is happening?? Aunt Lisa, do you know what is going on? The past two batches have done this. This recipe I have used before and this hasn't happened until now. If you recall my caramel apple cupcakes did the same thing on Sunday. I have a brand new oven! Does anyone have any tips as to why this is happening?? For the sake of my pants I'm glad all of them didn't rise. I have eaten 3 of these already. They are sooo dangerous. Maybe my oven is telling me something. 5lbs have snuck onto the scale. Okay I lied, a little more than 5....


Martha the reject strikes again..................

Two super awesome things to report.

1. I think I sprained my ankle today. Seriously, why do they call it "sprained". There is nothing springy about it. It feels like it's completely broken. I guess that's what happens when you wear nothing but heels and flip flops during a weekend trip to D.C.

2. I drove 2 hours home from the airport concocting this recipe in my head for Caramel Apple Cupcakes. They smelled amazing but look like brown craters. Not only do they have a black hole in the middle but they are completely stuck to the wrappers. Sadly, they taste really really good. I guess it's back to the drawing board.

Washington Recap......

I'm finally home from my weekend getaway to D.C. . If you didn't know, I traveled there to attend the 2009 Library of Congress National Book Festival with a fellow blogger friend who lives in Atlanta. The festival hosted a slew of famous authors who signed and spoke on Saturday. It was simply amazing. We were the first in line for a couple of authors. We were there when they opened and left when they shut it down! The highlight of course was to meet my favorite author, Mo Willems. Everyone was super nice with the exception of Mrs. Paula Deen. She would NOT sign your book unless it was her newest cookbook which you could purchase in the book sales tent. I thought this was a little ridiculous. Other than that, the day was perfect. It rained all day with the high of 60 and you still couldn't wipe the smile off my face with a brick if you tried!!! Today we made all the tourist stops and searched for the damn cupcakery that was conveniently CLOSED on Sundays.... Other than that, it was perfect. I can't wait to go back next year!

The lines that started forming very, very, early in the morning.

David Shannon signing my "No, David" book.

So I walked up (3rd person in line) and said at lightening speed, "Hi! I flew all the way from Illinois just to see you. Here sign my book. Can you pose for a picture? I think I started crying when I saw you. Your books are amazing." I think that all came out within 3 seconds. Either he was mimicking me and my crazy state in this photo or he is just an awesome fun guy. Lets say the second option.
Did you read "The Secret Life of Bees"? This is Sue Monk Kidd the author.
Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black who wrote the
Spiderwick Chronicles they were hilarious!!! I plan to get the
series now and start reading them!

Mo doing a reading from his book, "Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed".
I had second row seats front and center.
Another reading.....
The famous and very animated Steven Kellogg
The most hilarious duo of the day, David Shannon and John Scieszka.
I HIGHLY recommend getting their new book Robot Zot. I laughed until I cried.

At dinner

A shot of Rheannon and I at dinner.
A shot just for Katie......


On route to D.C. ..........................

I am sitting at the airport blogging waiting for my plane to arrive to take me to D.C. . I am so excited for my big day tomorrow. I hope I don't have to knock down any kids to get my autograph with Mo. I have all my books ready for Mo, Paula Deen, and David Shannon to sign. Thankfully I will have a blog friend there to capture it all on my camera. We are meeting each other at the Ronald Reagan Airport and then we are off to our hotel.

I would like to say a huge thank you and I love you to my husband who "allowed" me to go. I have spent mucho monies this month. But he saw that meeting Mo meant a lot to me. You're the best Ry!!!!!!! I will blog as soon as I can. Bye blog family.


Happy 1st Day of Fall........................

I have so many Fall treats up my sleeve. The first one is coming this Thursday! Stay tuned.


Didn't your mother teach you anything????

Let me rant for a split second. I have attended 4 weddings this year and it never fails. A female always shows up dressed from head to toe in white. What planet are these women from? Isn't this something that is just complete common sense? DO NOT WEAR WHITE TO A WEDDING!! I don't care if you are on a beach, on the boardwalk, if it's the last dress you own, if you are over the age of 10, DON'T DO IT! Come on ladies, the bride spent hundreds of dollars to look good in her white gown. Please don't show up like you thought it would be a good idea to match her. Alright, there I said it. Now I will focus on matters that are worth more energy. Sorry girls, I had to do it!

Congratualtions Mr. & Mrs. Calcaterra!

Here are a few pictures from the wedding we went to on Saturday. The wedding was beautiful and we couldn't be happier for this wonderful couple!!

The wedding party!!

The beautiful centerpieces
Ryan and Miranda
Being that both of them are pharmacists, they had these cute favors made up!

At the end of the night we had the Harry Carrey glasses and a pair of broken sunglasses. We made sure to get a good picture. We really make a beautiful trio. Thank goodness we aren't afraid of a little humility....

Bren and Justin

Ryan and I before the wedding


Ben and Katie's Wedding Part 1

Last night we attended a wedding rehearsal and a dinner for our friends Katie and Ben who are getting married today! Here are a few pictures from our lovely night!

While at the church Ryan found these in the lost in found. The guys all took turns doing their best Harry Carrey impression. Cubs Win! Cubs Win!
My mom took a quick shot of us before we went.
Miss Ava Grace. She was feeding me cherries all night. She was a hoot!

The Settle Family


Oh yea..... I'm soooo going..........

Rheannon is joining me on a whirlwind trip to D.C.!!!!!!! Next weekend I will be in the company of Mo Willems, Paula Deen, David Shannon, just to name a few. We are sooo excited. President Obama and Michelle are co-chairing the festival. Perhaps they will drop in......... Rheannon is also a baking fiend, so we are going here!!!

I can't wait to post a picture of Mo and I! I hope he doesn't think that I am a stalker. I would bet all of you that I will be the oldest by 20 years there waiting in line for an autograph. Maybe I will say it's for my kid that couldn't make it...

Mo just heard the news!!



I made Cappuccino cupcakes this evening with mocha buttercream frosting. These are toooooo die for!! I will post the recipe tomorrow. You MUST try these! Taking them to work in the morning.


Alright, who's coming with me?

Let me entice you by dropping a few names... Paula Deen, Nickolas Sparks, James Patterson, Jodi Picoult, David Shannon (the No David series), John Scieszka, John Grisham, JUDY BLUME!!, Sue Monk Kid (Secret Life of Bees & The Mermaid Chair) these are just to name a few of the hundreds of authors that will be a the 2009 National Book Festival. They are speaking and signing!! I'm going, who's coming with me????
Click here to see if your favorite author is coming....

Can someone give me a couple days off?

This is a hilarious coincidence. Before I write this post, I must mention the sad sad comparison. Katie just posted on her blog about her favorite author Dan Brown, who's newest book hit the shelves today. I was about to post about my favorite author when I realized this. Read on to see the hilarity.

My most favorite author of all time is Mo Willems. His hits are Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus, Don't Let the Piegon Stay Up Late, Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed, and Knuffle Bunny to name a few. Obviously, Mo is a children's author. On September 26th he will be at the National Mall doing a book signing and reading his favorite Dr. Seuss book, along with gobs of other children's authors! Secretly, my life's love is children's books. I get a high just walking into the children's section at Barnes and Noble. Every Christmas I ask for a stack of kid's books. I have zero children blog family! This is for my reading enjoyment only! I realize this is a little eccentric. But I'd like to think that by the time we do have children, I will be the best book reader my kids have ever heard!! ; )
I would just give about anything to see him in person. But the problem is I don't have enough days saved up to take off. Anyone want to loan me theirs? How long is the drive to D.C.?

Who wouldn't love this?? This is his dinning room. Every week his family decides a new theme to draw. Last week was the circus.

Sister, did you read my mind?

While visiting one of my favorite Cupcakery websites today, I found this!!! Hello?? Did Debbie Meyer ready my mind? I have been thinking about how to fill my cupcakes without have to dig a hole in them. This contraption is the perfect answer! If you are interested in picking this gadget up go here!
Rheannon, you sooooo need this!!


What I have been up to......

For the past month I have been planning a shower for a dear friend of mine who is getting married October 17th. Our plans were to throw an outdoor shower complete with a big white tent. The plans changed last week due to the possible rainy weather and the tent being damaged. The gears started turning and I immediately thought of Ryan's parent's barn behind their home. When I approached them, they thought I was crazy to want to throw a shower in there. But I saw it's potential! Needless to say, after Ry's dad stored 2 trailer bed's in Grandma Mary's barn, I had a blank canvas to work with. I also had a headache causing gasoline smell that was due to the 2 lawnmowers that are stored in there. We worked for a straight week making it a rustic fall backdrop for Shelly's bridal shower. That morning, Katie came by and took amazing pictures with her fabulous camera. She also posted some different pictures, check out her blog on my sidebar. These pictures are from her shoot. The candles were lit, the smell of fall was wafting in the air (thanks to B&B pumpkin simmering oil), deep orange and creme roses adorned each table, and Norah Jones completed the atmosphere. Once Shelly arrived and saw it, the tears in her eyes made me realize that it was a success. Take a look...............

The "cottage" before the transformation....

This is what it looked like before Dave did the major overhaul. Do you think I'm crazy??
The front door the day of the shower
An aerial shot of the room the morning of

The food table (before it was complete) it was overflowing with wonderful food thanks to Kim!

Love this centerpiece of wheat

A shot of my parent's beautiful chandelier that they brought over. It made such a huge statement.

The dessert table

The Cake

The view from the front door

The homemade cookies with the personalized cellophane bags.

The place settings

Glasses for Mimosas, Sangria, and hot apple cider

Proud Wife

This huge smile is due to my husband winning his division (5-8 handicap) during the Fall Classic two day tournament at Franklin County Country Club. In addition to this fancy award he also got a nice monetary award! I was so proud of him I just had to post this! Great Job Ry!


LBD Party......

Friday night I attended the 3rd annual Little Black Dress party. It was held at Great Boars of Fire, which was beautiful, and suported the Women's Center. I would estimate that over 2,000 girls were in attendance in their cute little black dresses. It was a great night to celebrate a wonderful cause.
Katie and I

We both stepped in this four feet of mud. Katie lost her brand new shoe in the muck!

We thought it was pretty hilarious. I drove with a muddy foot.