Friday, August 28, 2009

Yummy To My Tummy

Well, this is our month of fasting. You might think I've lost weight, considering I can't eat until ~8pm at night. WRONG! I have lost all self-control and have been eating Peanut Butter Dove chocolates like it's my job. It's awful. Each day, I start off well. Tons of water and a Balance Trail Mix bar (4 points). And on Weight Watchers, that would leave me a solid 21 points at night (if I don't save any.) And I can't even do it. I have lost all sense when the time comes to eat. Oh well.

You might think I'm going to post about getting healthy again. Maybe next week. But FIRST, I want to try this dessert I saw on Paula's Home Cooking yesterday. It's a dessert by Paula Deen that does NOT involve butter. I know, shocking.

Lemon Blossoms
Recipe courtesy Paula Deen via the Food Network

18 1/2 ounce package yellow cake mix
3 1/2 ounce package instant lemon pudding mix
4 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil

4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 lemon, zested
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons water

1. Preheat the over to 350 degrees F.
2. Spray miniature muffin tins with vegetable oil cooking spray. Combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs and oil and blend well with an electronic mixer until smooth, about 2 minutes. Pour a small amount of batter, filling each muffin tin half way. Bake for 12 minutes. Turn out onto a tea towel.
3. To make the glaze, sift the sugar into a mixing bowl. Add the lemon juice, zest, oil and water. Mix with a spoon until smooth.
4. With fingers, dip the cupcakes into the glaze while they're sill warm, covering as much of the cake as possible, or spoon the glaze over the warm cupcakes, turning them to completely coat. Place on wire racks with waxed paper underneath to catch any drips. Let them glaze set thoroughly, about 1 hour, before storing in containters with tight-fitting lids.

Yield: 5 dozen (uh oh...might need to rethink this...could be dangerous!)

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posted by Anisa @ 3:54 PM | 0 comments

Sunday, August 16, 2009

From Miss to Mrs.

Bert and I recently took the loooooooooong trek to Hot Springs, AR for a dear friend's wedding. My friend Amber and I met while we were interns in DC and just hit it off. We moved back up right after college and lived in the same building. She was one of my bridesmaids when I got married 5 years 5 years!

So, since it was around an 11 hour drive, we decided to break it up on the way there. We stopped in Memphis to visit Bert's BFF and his wife. LOVE THEM. It was a blast. The next morning, we got up and drove to Little Rock to see the Clinton Library. It was amazing to see the history and his accomplishments. What prosperity and goodwill we had around the world!

Bert pretending to be Mr. Prez

They did an excellent job with the library and then we found a cute seafood dive right down the street called the Flying Fish. Highly recommend. After that, purchasing some Jackie Kennedy paper dolls for me and scoring some red velvet cupcakes, we made the final 2 hour drive to Hot Springs.

The rehearsal dinner was at the country club and the and the bride was radiant. We had such a fun bridesmaids brunch the next morning and I got my hair "did." It had been a LONG time since I had a professional updo, so that was fun. The wedding was very nice, the bride was gorgeous and the reception was spectacular. It was definitely one of the best times I've ever had at a wedding. Just a blast...and the couple was so happy.

Bridesmaid's Butt Broach Assembly Line

Me with "Cousin" Emily

Me and the beautiful bride!

And so, all in all, it was a great weekend. But I am DEFINTIELY ready for a weekend with zero plans, as you can tell from this and the previous two posts that I have had three jam-packed weekends in a row. I need a break!
posted by Anisa @ 3:06 PM | 2 comments

Friday, August 14, 2009

5 Years With My Main Man

Man, I was a lucky girl to have TWO wedding ceremonies! The top picture is of our wedding on August 14, 2004. The bottom is a formal portrait we took in our Nikah (Muslim wedding) attire. The date of that ceremony was August 13, 2004.

Bert knows that I love to speak to him in song, so here is my song lyric of the day:

I love you more today than yesterday, but not as much as tomorrow.

I mean it. Love you.

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posted by Anisa @ 1:20 PM | 3 comments

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Aunt Nisa...Well, Almost

I can't believe I am going to be an aunt! That's LITTLE sister is having a baby! I can hardly believe it.'s going to be a girl! I love love love baby girls. I plan on being the one that interjects lots of pink and frou-frou-ness into her life. :)

Sara and her husband recently moved two hours from my house, so immediately I thought BABY SHOWER! And that's just what I did. We have a lot of family that lives within 1-2 hours of my house, so it was a great central location.

She got some of the cutest stuff...those tiny clothes are really something. And the cake - isn't it amazing? Mama and I did most of the food - Asian salad, chicken salad croissants, black-eyed pea salsa, fruit and cream cheese dip, mini parathas (Indian bread), spinach dip and more. My grandmother made kabobs and gulab jamuns (an Indian dessert), my great-aunt made delicious potato samosas and my aunt made brownies. It was all delicious! I am hungry just thinking about it!

Sara loved her gifts...she really racked up. After opening her gifts, I had all the mothers go around and give her a bit of advice. It was all very sweet. My favorite was when Sara said that she wanted to do what our mom did and make "everything magical." She talked about how in thunderstorms, we would go sit on the porch and we were allowed to play in rainshowers...just how everything was special. And it was.

Mama, Sara and Me

It was a lovely weekend, and I can't wait to be Aunt Nisa!


posted by Anisa @ 2:57 PM | 5 comments

No Squealing

First things first. I have several posts in me, but have been waiting to download pics. First up: whitewater rafting down the Chattooga River!

For those of you that have seen "Deliverance," this was the same river in the movie. We rafted and swam at many of the exact same sites. I was fine until I saw an Appalachian man playing the banjo. I hate that song from that me the creeps.

Anyway, I went on this excursion as part of a leadership group I am a member of. This was for our retreat, and it was a BLAST. I usually hate retreats because they are a total waste of time. Not this one! And I was TERRIFIED to whitewater raft...but totally ended up rocking a Class 4 rapid. So much fun!

I learned a lot about myself - that I actually am more capable than I thought without Bert. I can do outdoorsy/athletic stuff even if he's not there to give me extreme amounts of support. I learned I can pull myself together and DO IT. I was proud. He was proud too.

I also became good friends with a girl in our group - also a displaced Mississippian in Georgia! So much fun. This picture above is of my group (there were around 25 of us total in different groups) with our guide. I spent the first 30 minutes of the rafting trip silent because I knew our guide was the spitting image of a celebrity.

"JAMES FRANCO!" I finally yelled out. He laughed and said he knew I was thinking really hard about something. My team was impressed my celebrity cross-reference. Usually I am much quicker, but his blond hair threw me for a bit.

Anyway, it was a great, great weekend in late July. I will definitely be back!
posted by Anisa @ 2:48 PM | 2 comments