I’m so excited to be sharing this post with you today because it gives me the chance to tell you what a wonderful group of friends I have. I’ve mentioned before how important my blogging friends are to me, and this couldn’t be more evident than it is right now. Whenever I think about how special these ladies are to me, I’m reminded of a sorority T-shirt that was popular when I was in college. It said, “From the outside looking in, you could never understand it. From the inside looking out, we could never explain it.” That pretty much describes how I feel, and I think the only people that really get it are other bloggers (and perhaps their spouses). I’ve had the pleasure of meeting several of the girls participating, and I am so lucky to call them friends. Even the ones I haven’t met feel like old friends to me. I am so honored that all of these girls took the time to make a special dish for us and Baby C.
To top it off, I was surprised last weekend when Eric and I got to our favorite restaurant only to discover my friends Annie, Josie and Tara there waiting for us. They came into town for the weekend and even had a shower for me. They had been planning this trip with Eric since before the new year (stay tuned for a post about their visit!). If that isn’t a perfect example of blogging friends turning into real friends, I don’t know what is.
Before I get too sappy, I just want to thank you all for letting Eric and I share this wonderful time in our lives with all of you. And a million thanks to the amazing ladies that made dishes to celebrate our upcoming arrival, especially Josie, who was kind enough to organize the entire thing. :) As is always the case with posts like this, seeing all the pictures makes me wish even more that we could do this in person. Thank you, thank you, thank you. It means the world to me.
Josie of Pink Parsley and I shared a room together at BlogHer Food last year. We got to see each other again for a quick lunch when Eric and I were traveling through Atlanta on our way home from Christmas in Alabama. Little did I know that they were secretly planning Josie’s visit when I wasn’t at the table. Sneaky! Josie made Crab and Brie Stuffed Mushrooms. Stuffed mushrooms were my gateway into liking mushrooms, and you really can’t go wrong when they’re stuffed with crab and Brie.
Annie of Annie’s Eats and I met for the first time over Labor Day weekend last year, but I feel like we’ve been friends forever. She was the third person (after myself and Eric) to find out about Baby C. I emailed her probably less than 5 minutes after I found out, and she emailed me back one of the most excited emails I’ve ever gotten. She made Okra Cornmeal Cakes with Chévre and Roasted Tomatoes. Being from the south, I love okra. This looks much healthier than the fried kind, and I love the combination of it with the Chévre and roasted tomatoes.
I have yet to meet Elly of Elly Says Opa, but I know it won’t be long until I do. Before she and I were really friends, Eric and I used to joke at how he had a blog crush on her because every single recipe we made from her blog was such a huge hit. I know Eric is happy that she opened my eyes to the fabulousness of chicken thighs, too. She made Goat Cheese-Stuffed Chicken Meatball Crostini. Goat cheese is my favorite cheese, and I know I would’ve eaten several of these had this shower happened in person. Seriously, how awesome does this combination sound?
I got to meet Shanon of The Curvy Carrot when I was in Indianapolis visiting Annie. She doesn’t live there anymore, but I lucked out because she was in town the same weekend I was. Shanon has a vegetarian blog, and, even though I’m not a vegetarian, I always find myself saving recipes from it. She made Mushroom and Mascarpone Tarts. I love tarts, and these look elegant and sound fabulous.
Amy of Gastronome Tart and I met last year when she moved to Richmond. We had a great time hanging out and chatting about food, blogging and all sorts of other things. Cool fact about her: she’s a beekeeper. She lives in another part of Virginia now, but I can’t wait to see her again and introduce her to Baby C (and get some honey ;)). She made Savory Apple Galettes , and I wish she still lived nearby so that I could’ve had one.
Amy of Sing for Your Supper just had a baby girl a couple weeks ago. I was so excited when I found out our due dates weren’t far apart, and I imagine we’ll be talking a lot about our baby girls. She made Virgin Peach Blood Orange Sangria. It’s no secret that I love wine, and I won’t lie and say I haven’t missed it. I wish I had seen this recipe months ago because it looks fabulous! I’m definitely making this one soon.
Kelsey of Apple a Day is one of the sweetest people I know. I just adore her, and I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll get to meet her one of these days. She made Raspberry White Chocolate Tartlets, which look perfect for a baby shower. Eric and I both love raspberries, especially when they’re paired with white chocolate.
Shawnda of Confections of a Foodie Bride lives in Texas and makes me wish I still did. Eric and I love Tex-Mex food and margaritas, and I’m pretty sure Shawnda is the margarita queen. She also does other cool things like garden and brew beer and make wine. I know we’d be great friends if we lived closer together. She made these adorable Pink Grapefruit Cookies. I love citrus in any form, and these delicate cookies look like the perfect way to showcase it.
I feel like I’ve known Nikki of Pennies on a Platter for such a long time. She’s so thoughtful and was especially helpful when I was making the switch to my new blog design. She made Cream Puffs Filled with Strawberries and Mascarpone. I love cream puffs, and the combination of them with strawberries and mascarpone sounds absolutely delightful.
I got to meet Karin of This Wife Bakes at BlogHer Food last year. She is hip and so much fun, and she’s also an insanely talented cake decorator. If I lived in Atlanta, I would pay her to give me some one-on-one lessons. She made this Blood Orange Marmalade Cake, and I so wish I could have a slice. Like I said, I love citrus. I’m not sure why I’ve never put it in a cake before, but that will be changing very soon.
I got to meet Tara of Smells Like Home last year at BlogHer Food. We had such a fantastic time hanging out, and I was so happy I got to see her again last weekend! She drove all the way here from Connecticut, and didn’t flinch when we stayed up until 4am the night before (technically, the day) she had to drive back. She made Sweet and Salty Cupcakes, which are the ideal dessert for me because my cravings right now quickly change from sweet to salty and back again. Eating one of these would certainly satisfy both.
Branny of Branny Boils Over and I got to meet at BlogHer Food last year. She’s hilarious, and I had such a fabulous time hanging out with her. While we were there, she tried Nutella for the first time when we were out to breakfast one day. The rest of us were shocked that she’d never eaten it, and we practically told her she had to try it right that second. That’s why I was so happy when I saw she made Nutella Swirl Blondies. Really, there’s no way to go wrong when Nutella is involved.
Ryan of Ryan Bakes and I met last year. She’s another Richmond food blogger, and it’s been awesome to have someone nearby who understands the craziness that is food blogging. We’ve had many laughs over blog-related topics, and I’m excited that she’ll get to meet Baby C soon. She made Strawberry Shortcake Sliders, which are so cute and perfect for a shower. I love strawberries and know I would devour these.
Cate of Cate’s World Kitchen is always inspiring me. Her blog is one of the first vegetarian blogs I started reading, and she’s constantly introducing me to new foods and recipes. She lives near San Francisco, which holds a special place in my heart since Eric and I spent part of our honeymoon there. She made Pink Lemonade Cupcakes. I spent the last year working at a cupcake shop, so cupcakes are high on my list of favorite treats. I love citrusy sweets and would have a hard time eating just one of these.
Thank you all again for making this so special for me, Eric and our baby girl. I’m lucky to have such a wonderful (and talented!) group of friends.