Dinner Club Time!!!

February 28, 2011

Have I mentioned that I love my friends………?

Cause I do. 


I  also love Dinner Club with my favorite ladies every month!  One night a month full of food, fun, laughter and sangria this month!  That’s right… we had a DELICIOUS Fiesta!!!  February was at Katie’s house so she prepared the meat and veggies and we gals brought all the fixings.  I LOVE Mexican Food!!!  Seriously, I could eat it every day… so I was definitely excited about the theme Katie wanted to go with!  She had a little fun with the theme too… don’t ya think!?!

We had a mouth-watering spread, MmmMmmMmmmmmm!  I cheated a little bit and went to pick up the salsa and cheese dip from El Molcajete on East North Street but that’s okay!!  It’s totally worth it!  Kelly didn't mind either!! 

And the cute host was adorable in her apron!!

Even if she did burn the taco shells.... haha, don't worry!!  It's very easy to do, Katie Ayer!! 
At least you looked cute while you did it!! ;) 
Don't worry though... we had extras and they were PERFECTO!

After some tacos we headed outside since the weather was just perfect for a light jacket… unless your Maddie! 

Sweet Madison & Kelley! 

 Beth and I! 

And of course, Jocie & Katie!

We played spoons, my first time.  
Found out I’m not a HUGE fan because I don’t prefer to be injured while I play card games! 

But as always it was a wonderful night with fantastic women!  We had the best conversations and decided that we need to record our times together because we think it would give “The Hills” a run for its money!   I voted for the name “The Foothills” everyone else thought “The Future Housewives of GVegas” and I’ve gotta admit, that’s a solid name for a hit show. 

I love these ladies so much!!!
((Jocie… we were so bummed you had already left!!))

a lot of food and a new baby!

I’ve noticed that my weekends are always very busy and I never have time to blog.  This isn’t necessarily a bad thing since it’s usually because I have some SUPER fun plans with the awesome people that I’m honored to call my family and friends.  

On Friday night Peter, Jocie, Adam and I went out on a fun double date!  We tried a new Thai Restaurant 
on Woodruff Road, Bon Thai and it was wonderful.  Everything was delicious but the desserts were lacking a bit.
I instantly knew where I wanted to go!!!  Now to explain the picture above....... 
If you haven't been to Sciortinos Trattoria Pizzeria then you have to go! 
The Pizza's are amazing, pastas are perfect and the desserts are to DIE for!  My favorite is obviously the Tiramisu!
Everything is homemade there and the owners are from Bronx, NY so it's definitely legit!  Seriously, go try it this weekend!!! You can thank me later. 

And the second wonderful thing from the weekend... the precious, adorable, and STYLISH new member of the Family! 
My cousin, Joni had her first baby while I was in NJ last weekend and I finally got to meet her on Saturday!!! 
She is obviously saying hello to all of you! ;) 
She was so sweet and cuddly and after visiting for a while she finally opened her eyes to meet me too!  I just LOVE her to pieces!!! 

The last highlight of the weekend was helping and kind of learning how to make Kibbeh Labanieh!!!
This is my FAVORITE of favorites and I always get super excited when I hear Peter's mom is making it. 
When we got to his house after church his Mom was busy starting the dish and 
I got to jump right in and help out... I mainly did a lot of stirring and watching but it was nice! 
It tasted incredible too... I'm definitely a great stirrer. ;) 

So... I hope everyone else had a super, fantastic, wonderful, amazing, blissful WEEKEND!  & I'm sure next weekend I'll have more than just 3 highlights!  


February 27, 2011

My incredibly beautiful and amazing friend, Madison is an angel!  At Dinner Club this past Thursday (post on that later) the group dwindled down to Madison, Katie and I and our conversation switched to our lack of enthusiasm to read the bible.  Katie and I were saying how we both feel overwhelmed when we open our bible to try and start.  We also both agreed that whenever we do try and learn something we turn everything around to be about ourself... which only leaves us feeling selfish and further away from God.  

One of the MANY things that I love whole heartedly about Madison is her passion for God and His word. 

I remember one morning while we were on a vacation in Atlanta, I woke up and Madison was gone... no where to be found.  I was slightly worried but I figured everything was fine... maybe she went to grab some coffee or taking a shower?  Eventually she walked in the room with her bible and notebook and said with her constant cheerful voice:

"HI!  Good Morning!! How are you!?!"

For any of you that REALLY know me you KNOW that I am NOT a morning person!  After a cup of coffee... maybe.  Depends on the morning.  But Madison knows how to start her mornings.  When I asked her where she was that morning on our Atlanta trip I was told that she was sitting outside in the sun having her quiet time.  I just love her for that... I mean, I love her for SO many things but one of the things I love with out a doubt is her NEED for God's word.  She not only wants to learn and grow but she has a NEED for it! 

During our conversation on Thursday night she told Katie and I that Deuteronomy completely rocked her world.  She said it took a good 2 months to get through it but she loved every second of it.  She also said that every time the word Israel is mentioned replace it with yourself.  After I got home that night I washed my face, put on some PJs and I crawled into bed with my bible and notebook... opened to Deuteronomy and dived in.  It was already past midnight at that point I didn't get very far since my eyelids felt like they were each 10 pounds but it was wonderful!  I can't wait to read more! 

My wonderful friend, Madison also said that she was going to text me every morning at 6AM when she wakes up for her quiet time.  I'm looking forward to having the best kind of alarm clock I can find!! haha! 

Today is Sunday and it's BEAUTIFUL... seriously gorgeous outside!  At church this morning we sang one of my favorites and I couldn't help but soak in ever word! 

Give me faith to trust what You say

That You’re good and Your love is great
I’m broken inside, I give You my life

I may be weak

But Your Spirit’s strong in me
My flesh may fail
My God You never will

I hope you all have a beautiful Sunday... enjoy the sunshine!!  :)

a fist pumping, good time!

February 22, 2011

The exciting NJ/NY trip started off great, like I’ve said MANY times… if I am flying with Peter I have GREAT luck.  By myself…? not so much.  So I was feeling pretty nice about the plane ride.  We didn’t have the BEST seats since we were more than half way back and it was also a SMALL plane with one seat on the left and 2 on the right so I realized VERY quickly that it was a tiny plane!  Still felt pretty safe though since I had my lucky charm. 

The whole flight was great until the last 30 minutes.  The pilot told everyone there was “some” turbulence ahead but I was not expecting anything this severe.  I’ve always been sensitive to motion in a car or an airplane but THIS was something horrible.  I had to take deep breaths and close my eyes, trying to relax while my wonderful boyfriend massaged my hand... after a few minutes I was actually feeling a little but better but then.......................

Worst thing that could have happened… 2 seats in front of me someone completely LOST it! 

I guess they didn’t have someone sweetly squeezing their hand!  To makes things even worse, he had no paper bag… so yea, it was all over his lap and chest.  I felt so bad for the guy.  One by one everyone started reaching for the air nozzles and I sat holding my nose with my free hand since Peter didn’t let go of my left the entire time while he tried to help with the nausea! 

Once we finally landed everything was much better… we got off, had some fresh New Jersey Air and went to pick up lunch with Peter’s sister, Jane at Trader Joe’s!  For most of Saturday we lied around the house and watched some TV and enjoyed time with his sisters. 

That night we all got dressed up for a night in NYC to celebrate Mimi’s Birthday!!! 

We went to her favorite place for a 5 course meal… it was all wonderful!

We started with a few fried yummies! 
Calamari, Stuffed Eggplant, Stuffed Mushroom, and an Oyster.

Then moved on to a crisp, sweet and sour salad!
The lettuce was covered with balsamic dressing with blue cheese and candied walnuts!

My favorite part of the meal was the PASTA!
It was the best flavor… some kind of alfredo, pesto, amazingly creamy sauce!

I made me self hold back though because I had to safe for THIS!
Delicious, juicy filet with mashed potatoes, mushrooms in gravy and veggies.

After becoming completely stuffed I had to try at least a FEW bites of this!
Poached Pear with Raspberry and Chocolate sauce!  YUM!
And isn't this just BEAUTIFUL!

Everything was SO good!!!  It was a long night and we didn’t get home till around 3:30 but it was worth it to celebrate with Mimi!!  I’m so glad we made it this year!  

Sunday Morning was rough… we were all dragging, especially Peter and I!  We had some amazing lunch at his Grandmothers house where I got to enjoy Stuffed Grape Leaves and Lentil Soup!  Two of my FAVORITE things!!!  We also had a little sweet tooth so we had this…

Talk about AMAZING!!!  It was a HUGE Butterfinger Cupcake.  Needless to say, I wasn’t counting points over the weekend!  This was the inside and a few little yummies too!! :-P

We enjoyed some time with the family and it was apparently purple day!  We all woke up and got dressed without seeing each other and look at the attire… so funny!!  We had to take a picture to capture the special color of the day. 

So, since this is apparently a food blog today I might as well show you the dinner we had later that night!  We went to Sultan’s to have my FAVORITE Arabic food!!  This is very hard to find since most people can’t make it because the meat has to be extremely fresh.  Please don’t judge… it’s the BEST thing ever!  It's called Kibbeh Neyeh.  It's made with cracked wheat mixed with ground meat.  Some eat it by itself but I put a piece in pita with sauce. 

Here's some of the other delicious COOKED meat... Lamb, Chicken Kabobs, Meat Kabobs, and a WHOLE chicken.  We were stuffed.  I didn't get to take pictures of all the awesome dips we had before the main meals.  

It was AAAAAAMAZING!  I loved it!  
If any of you ever go to NJ you have to find this place! 

The flight home was amazingly easy except for the 30 minute delay because of changing a tire which was perfectly fine with me, Safety First right!?!  There was also no bumps which I was VERY thankful for... mainly because that poor guy I mentioned earlier, yea well... he was sitting RIGHT in front of ME! 

Little Miss Beautiful!!

February 17, 2011

I've been so stinkin excited about finally meeting sweet baby Adelyn for DAYS now... to be honest I've been dying to meet her since she was born over a month ago!!!!  Today was finally the day!  

Her Mom and I went to High School together and became very close during all of our Dance Team activities and of course we talked about our future and how we would love to get married and have babies so it's so exciting to watch her as a MOMMY now!!!  She is amazing too...

Anyways... on to the itty bitty, sweet, adorable, gorgeous baby!!!! 
I mean, look at those cute little lips!!  She is so pretty! 

Mom said she was going to hold her first because...
"I birthed you and if I didn't HAVE you then you wouldn't be friends with Megan and you wouldn't even be able to see Adelyn!"

hahaha!!!  Well, that didn't last long because the second I got in the
house that baby didn't stand a chance... she was in my arms in less than 15 seconds! 

I absolutely love her!!!!  
Love you too Megan, I can't wait to see both 
of them again on Monday!!! 


February 16, 2011

As most of you know (if you read this SUSHI POST a while back) Peter and I go out for a Sushi date every Wednesday night!!  Most of the time it's just the 2 of us but we love to have guests as well.  

After I finish my meal every week apparently I lose control of my self which Peter also calls a "Sushi High"... 

During this few moments on the ride home I...
1) Smile a lot!! 
2) Sometimes squeal.
3) Expect at least 2 kisses at every red light.
4) And there's usually some laughing involved! 

After a few minutes... usually 30 at most my "Sushi High" is gone and I'm back to the normal, laid back Cassie.  In the past 2 years that we've been having our weekly sushi dates Peter has gotten accustomed to this.  I remember the first time I took my mom to eat Sushi when Peter was out of town for work (because I can't go a week without it) I think she thought something was seriously wrong with me.  She kept looking at me like I was a stranger and asked me at one point if I was somehow drunk off of the water that I drank at dinner?  

It's surprising to me that I still experience this after eating sushi every week for some time now but it never fails... always on the way home it happens.  Miyabi + Sushi = HAPPY CASSIE

Not only was this a Sushi Wednesday but today would have been my Papa's 79th Birthday.  I still can't believe he's gone sometimes.  Certain things will happen and I'll think, I need to tell Papa... or my car will be making a weird sound and I'll think, I should run my car by Papa's so he can listen to it... and sometimes I will be visiting my Grandma and taking a nap (something about that house, I always have the BEST naps there for some reason?) and I will be in between sleep and awake and I swear I hear him walking by or whispering and for just a second I think he's there.... but he's not.  

I'm not saying all this to prove that I'm sad he's gone.  I do miss him every single day BUT I am so happy he's not suffering or in pain anymore.  He is free.  No pain, no sadness, no questions on why he has Cancer for the second time in his life.  Just pure happiness and peace in Heaven forever.  I'm sure he is having the BEST Birthday ever with all the family that he's missed for a long time and with the family that's made it there after him.  I do miss him, but I would never want him back the way he was when he left.  

This is one of my favorite pictures of him... 

This was Thanksgiving, 2009 and we all knew it would be his last.  He was in pain, had no hair and he died 2 months later but look at that smile.  That's what I always remember about him... his happiness.  So that's what I am going to do, be HAPPY that he is going to be happy forever!  Miss you and LOVE you, Papa!!! 

So as I sit on the couch at Peter's house, comfy under my blanket watching him kill people fiercely on this crazy video game (He seriously just said "OH COME ON, I SHOT HIM IN THE HEAD"... no lie!) I am coming down from my weekly Sushi High.  Which also means I'm going to go get a nice, hot, delicious cup of HOT tea!!! 

Good Night All!  Hope you had a wonderful Hump Day... half the work week is over!! YAY! 


February 15, 2011

HA!!!  Gotcha.......

if you thought this post was going to be about something that might sparkle and twinkle on my left hand then you are wrong

This exciting post is about the fun weekend I will have seeing all the sparkles in NYC!!!  That's always the first thing I think of when I think of New York... Sparkles!!!!

I mean, check out all those lights!!!  I. LOVE. IT.  We are leaving on Saturday morning at 9:30 from Greenville and we'll come back on Monday, which I have off thanks to Presidents Day!  Gotta love Bank Holidays!!! ;) 

The 19th is also Mimi's (Peter's Sister) Birthday so we are going to the city for a super fun night of Birthday Celebration!!!  I know it will be a blast because anytime the Eliya family are together it's a blast.  If you remember this Family Reunion Blog you will remember the awesome weekend I had and it was all because of his wonderful family!  Sisters, Brother, Joy, Cousins, his amazing Mom... I love them ALL!  So this weekend will definitely be a blast! 

Of course I will take pictures and remember every detail so I can write the normal, re-cap blog!  I love writing those so one day when I'm old and grey I can read them and remember every detail...  

Ready for Hump Sushi Day tomorrow!!!  We might have a double date set up with a VERY awesome couple!  Crossing my fingers!!!

Heart Day!

February 14, 2011

Since Peter and I treat each other like it’s Valentines Day EVERY day… ;)  We decided that we didn’t need to go out for a nice dinner or exchange gifts, which I was completely fine with.  On Saturday night I was enjoying some delicious tilapia, rice & salad with Peter and his mom then all the sudden he got up from the table and walked away… when he came back he had this!

With a smile on his face he said Happy Valentines!  Of course I was super excited but instantly felt HORRIBLE because I didn’t buy him anything because we said we weren’t going to do GIFTS!!  Of course I tore the bag open and found two beautiful pieces from Christina Nicole Studios!  I’m so lucky to have such a talented friend… and a sweet boyfriend!! 

The earrings are actually named “Cassie’s Earrings” because she knows my love affair with anything Cameo! 
These are absolutely beautiful and so classy… LOVE them!!  
The blurry camera picture REALLY does NOT do them justice! 

I also got a little extra surprise with this hair clip.  
I’ve been wearing my hair pinned back a lot lately so this will be perfect!
I love how earthy and organic it is.

Since I couldn’t go all Valentines without giving Peter something after his sweet surprise I went to Macy’s to pick up a watch he’s had his eye on.  I was told even after the gift he gave me that I still shouldn’t buy him anything… well; he’s crazy if he thinks I will agree to that!  I called Macy's and after waiting for a minute or two I finally got in touch with the Watch Department.  

A lady that was not the friendliest of saleswomen told me that she was "swamped" and she would have to put me on hold.  10 minutes later (no lie) I hung up and called the number again.  A few minutes later she finally picked up... again.  I informed her (in a very nice tone) that I was just placed on hold and I needed to know if the watch was available as soon as possible since I was driving 40 minutes to come pick it up, Spartanburg to Haywood Mall... she once again said she was "swamped" and asked if she could call me back on my cell.  I told her that was perfectly fine.

5 minutes later she called back.  I told her the watch I was looking for and she said that they only had a few brown leather band watches and they haven't sold any for weeks so it's definitely there.  I described the one I was going to buy and she said "yes, I will put it on hold."  I gave her my name and drove to Haywood Mall... skipping the gym for the night.  

I finally arrive at Macy's and have to park WAY far away but its fine, it's worth it!!  I run in, head down stairs to the Watch Department and found no one there.  I start looking around and didn't see the watch in the case but I didn't worry because she put it on hold.... after finally finding a lady working on earrings I asked her who was over the Watch Department?  She looked at me with this blank stare and said "oh... me." and just stood there.  I wanted to laugh but instead I patiently said "okay, can you help me?"

We walked over to the watches and I said "I called earlier and you placed the watch on hold for me, the name is Cassie."  I assumed it was the same lady since she sounded EXACTLY the same... she informed me that she didn't place anything on hold for anyone today.  I smiled, took a breath and said "oh, okay... well it was the Kenneth Cole watch with the brown leather band, could you check in the Holds?"  She opened a drawer behind the counter and said "I don't see anything...? sorry honey."

I wanted to scream!  She then told me where the watches were with brown leather bands but the one that was SUPPOSED to be on hold for me to buy was not there!  I told her this but she said "I'm sorry... I don't know what to tell you.  That's all we have and I don't see anything on hold."  Then I turned around and walked away.  I couldn't even speak.

What I learned this Valentines Day....
1. I will NEVER shop at Macy's again!  Or at least not in the Watch Department! 
2. I should have guessed that Peter would buy me something even if he said he wouldn't. 
3. I will never believe him again if he says we are doing the "no gift thing"... NO SIR!  
4. I'm a very lucky woman because the whole time I was telling him the story above he had that sweet smile on his face and simply said, "I told you not to buy me anything."

I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentines filled with lots of love… and chocolate!! ;)

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