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Happy Anniversary, Mum & Dad!

31 October 2013

Friday, 25 October, my parents celebrated their 33rd wedding anniversary!
Happy Anniversary!
Sunday, 27 October, their best friends, Karin and Harold, invited them (and me!) to dinner at Lure in Westlake Village to celebrate. What followed was a delightful evening devouring a scrumptious dinner followed by some amazingly sinful delicious desserts at their house (with Maizy in tow).

Dayne's Chicago Beef & Dawgs

27 October 2013

This afternoon after church, my mum suggested grabbing lunch at Dayne's Chicago Beef & Dawgs on Thousand Oaks Blvd. - a recent addition to the Thousand Oaks scene as of August 2013. Wow. What a charming little find between Chocolatine and Jiffy Lube near Hampshire Road.

Halloween: Maizy Meets Pooh Bear

20 October 2013

What are you wearing for Halloween? All Hollow's Eve is coming up in 11 days and the stores are filled with costumes upon costumes, masks upon masks.  While waiting for Maizy's grooming appointment to be finished at PetsMart, I spotted this precious Pooh Bear costume on sale.
Cute, right?

Maizy Gets Groomed

19 October 2013

Our precious little furry friend, Maizy, got groomed Thursday in readiness for her family's return.
Look how pretty she looks!

Kiss Me Kate with Davis Gaines

18 October 2013

We all know those classic Cole Porter songs such as Another Openin', Another Show and Too Darn Hot and So In Love. Spiced up for a modern audience but still making use of all the classic songs, the result is continuous laughs and two hours of toe tapping fun.
Kiss Me Kate
Victoria Strong/Davis Gaines
(c) Cabrillo Music Theatre, 2013

76 Days Until London!

17 October 2013

In 76 very short days I will be getting on a plane with my one-way ticket to London! I cannot believe it's almost here. I have been prepping and planning since April and what a whirlwind it has been.

Misty's Wedding Weekend, Part III

14 October 2013

The day we have been looking forward to has come! My beautiful dear heart friend, Misty, is married!!

Dress: Express, Shoes: Jessica Simpson, Bracelet: Stella & Dot
Bridesmaid Wine Glass from Misty 
Bridesmaids were expected to arrive photo ready by 2:45 at Wayfayers Chapel in Rancho Palos Verdes. On Sunday afternoons in LA you never know what kind of traffic you'll experience so I left photo ready at 12:45 with time to spare and thankfully (praise God!) there was little traffic and I arrived by 2:15 with time to admire the view.
The glorious view from the Wayfayers Chapel parking lot.

Misty, our beautiful girlfriend, had her hair and makeup done that morning and met us all at the Chapel looking quite adorable and perfect with her hair wrap. (How many people do you know can pull of that adorable look?)  

After scarfing down a grilled cheese, Misty grabbed her gown and we followed her into the bride's room where I was honored to share a small and intimate moment with Misty helping her into her dress. When you see the professional photos you will have to agree with me that the dress appeared made for her. A-mazing!

The ceremony went off perfectly. Jared's face flooded with such a huge and happy smile when he saw Misty walk down the aisle and trust me those happy tears I promised in my last post started! Rev. Keenan Barber (from Bel Air Presbyterian) officiated with Rev. Dr. Donald J. Barnes (from Wayfayers Chapel) and Ryan Sterling, friend of the couple, read from 1 Corinthians 13. Seeing the happiness and true love Misty and Jared shared during their vows made it one of the most perfect wedding ceremonies ever.

Groomsman Franco drives the couple to the reception.
After photos, everyone headed 5 minutes down Palos Verdes Drive to Point Vicente Interpretive Center where the reception was held.  Immediately we bridesmaids and Sharon (Jared's mum) got to work setting the tables. Our bridesmaid bouquets doubled as center pieces and all bridesmaids brought our wine glass gifts (from Misty) which added a special touch to our table (#10).

The four "lavender/purple" bridesmaids: Rosie, Cari, Shannon & Sonya

Yours truly with Cari, a hospitable/gracious/warm friend from Misty's college days
Yours truly with Shannon, a lovely/gregarious friend from Misty's Bible study (former housemates)
Yours truly with Rosie, Misty's beautiful/funny/kind younger sister/matron-of-honor
After Misty and Jared were finished with photos, we the bridal party made our entrance. You'll be amused, dear readers, that I, the shortest of bridesmaids at 5'1", was paired with arguable the tallest of groomsmen and Shannon, second shortest of the bridesmaids, was paired with the second tallest of groomsmen. We had a good laugh about it. Next came those precious dances we all enjoy watching, perhaps with a tear or two. 
Misty & Jared's first dance.

Mother and Son Dance: Sharon & Jared.
In foreground: Misty's mum and brother. 
Father and Daughter Dance: Misty and Proud Papa Bill. 
Father and Daughter Dance: Bill, Misty & Rosie share a dance.
In foreground: Jared's dad and sister.
Check out this gorgeous sunset!
Misty shares a special moment with her dad and husband.
 After the opening dances, dinner was served. Misty and Jared had dinner catered by Stonefire Grill (one of my favorite places to get try-tip and breadsticks) and most of us bridesmaids were starving so we couldn't have been happier to see those trays of food when we queued up for food. A friend of the couple, Krystin Walker, served delicious petit desserts while there was a small white cake for Jared and Misty to use for the cake cutting -- great idea!
The head table.
Our delicious dinner (Stonefire Grill).

Some of the delicious petite dessert options. The fruit tart was my favorite.
As it was getting dark, and I had only brought my pocket-sized Canon Powershot, I powered down and joined the dancing.  Still, the groomsmen started taking selflies with their iPhones and we bridesmaids joined in the fun.

Again it was a great and amazing wedding. I am so happy for my dear heart friend, Misty, and her now husband, Jared. As we exchanged our "see you laters" (because I won't accept "goodbye", lol) the tears came and continued for the first part of my drive home. Misty has been someone very special in my life these last 5 years and knowing our lives will be going in different directions for a while (at least) gets me choked up but I am so thankful for modern technology.

They fly to St. Croix tonight so please keep them in your prayers as they start this amazing new adventure!!

Misty's Wedding Weekend, Part II

12 October 2013

What a fun 2nd day of Misty's wedding weekend. We girls (bridesmaids, bride and family) got together at Flower Duet in Torrance for a flower arranging class where we prepped and made our bouquets and center pieces for tomorrow. Our teacher was co-owner, Kit Wertz, who was a down to earth fun and a informative instructor who explained all the different florals we were using and made us feel like pros despite the general lack of experience.

Misty and her sister, Rosie.
Misty's cousin
Bridesmaids Cari and Mandy
The blushing bride... So happy and beautiful!

Misty and her adorable "Grandma" Dot.
Instructor/Owner Kit with Bridesmaid Mandy
Our fantastic group @ Flower Duet

Misty and bridesmaid Sonya

The Beautiful Bride and Bridesmaids Shannon and yours truly.
What a fun 2 hours we had at Flower Duet this afternoon. I cannot recommend Kit enough. She was patient, helpful, fun and an excellent teacher. If you are looking for floral instruction in the South Bay check out their website @


After our fun girlie adventure, we headed over to the rehearsal dinner at Scotty's on the Strand in Hermosa Beach. The moment I parked and saw the restaurant I smiled -- it practically screamed Misty & Jared. :)

They have a small parking lot (FREE!) in back.
The beautiful view from their restaurant.
We ate upstairs in their banquet hall.
Big thanks to Jared's lovely parents, Sharon and Jeff, for hosting a lovely dinner. Dressed in our favorite sports themed shirts, the room was filled with happy people full of good cheer and laughter and happiness at this blessed occasion.

Check out the darling decor Sharon put together!
Misty and her bridesmaids with our handmade gifts! She painted our names on each glass.
The parents!
Jared and his groomsmen raise a toast in their beer stein gifts.
Camp Crouch! 
Misty with her brother and sister.
The beautiful couple! <3
I am so glad to be part of this fantastic weekend. As I was driving home from dinner, it hit me that tomorrow is my last with Misty here in LA before she embarks on her amazing adventure with Jared in St. Croix and Nashville and I embark on my adventure in London. Our friendship has been such a blessing these past 5 years and although it's not "saying goodbye" it is still bittersweet to see this chapter ending. Happy tears will make an appearance tomorrow, I have no doubt. God has been so good to my dear <3 friend, Misty, these 5 years I have known her and I cannot wait to see what more God has in store for her!

"'For I know the plans I have for you, Misty and Jared,' declares the Lord, 'plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.'"
Jeremiah 29:11 ESV

Sweet dreams! Tomorrow will be amazing...
Praying for God's blessings on Misty and Jared!

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