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Happy Mardi Gras!


Today is the official day for Mardi Gras. Boy, do I sure wish we were in New Orleans. (I just want to experience it once). We have a good friend who sent us an overnight package in celebration of the day. I thought it was going to be a bunch of beads (until I noticed the sticker that read “cake inside”), Of course that REALLY grabbed my attention. Upon opening we found a HUGE cake. A King Cake. The King Cake is a brioche-style cake traditionally made throughout the State of Louisiana during the weeks prior to Mardi Gras. Usually oval in shape, the King Cake is a bakery delicacy made from a rich Danish dough (which is a sweetened yeast bread…a cross between a coffee cake and a French pastry) and covered with a poured sugar topping decorated in the traditional Mardi Gras-colored sugars of purple (symbolizing Justice), green (symbolizing Faith) and gold (symbolizing Power). This colorful topping is representative of a jeweled crown in honor of the Three Wise Men who visited the Christ Child on Epiphany (a word derived from the Greek meaning “to show”). Epiphany, also known as Twelfth Night (i.e., January 6) is when the Carnival Season officially begins.



The King Cake tradition is believed to have begun with French settlers around 1870, who were themselves continuing a custom which dated back to Twelfth Century France, when a similar cake was used to celebrate the coming of the Magi twelve days after Christmas bearing gifts for the Christ Child. This celebration was also once known as King’s Day. As a symbol of this Holy Day, a tiny plastic baby (symbolic of the baby Jesus) is placed inside each King Cake but in times gone past, the hidden items were usually coins, beans, pecans or peas.



Today, the cakes are baked in many shapes but originally, they were round to portray the circular route take by the Magi in order to confuse King Herod, whose army was attempting to follow the Wise Men so that the Christ Child could be killed. The origin of the modern King Cake can be traced back to the Middle Ages, when popular devotion during Christmas turned to the Three Wise Men. In 1871, the tradition of choosing the Queen of Mardi Gras was determined by who drew the prize within the cake. Today, such a find is still deemed to be a sign of good luck and it customary for the person who discovers the hidden plastic baby to host the next King Cake Party.


I guess that means I’m hosting a King Cake Party next year. (I found the baby)


Thanks to our good friend, for such a delicious introduction to Mardi Gras.












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Filed under: Friends, Gifts, Holiday

Sunday Fun


Yesterday we had some friends over for the Super Bowl. Boo, our team (49ers) lost. But regardless we sure did have a good time. Our neighbors, (we live in a duplex), had a party as well, which was fun. Everyone was laughing, drinking, and having a great time! It was nice to be surrounded by good peeps, and some adorable children. We kind of decided last minute to have the party, and just threw it out there to a few people, and ended up with probably the best mix of people, we’ve had yet. So much fun!!


Thanks, friends. You guys rock!



PS things got a little silly, throughout, as you can see.








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Filed under: Friends

A Birthday Celebration

  Last night we celebrated a good friend’s birthday. We went to an amazing restaurant in Santa Barbara, called Opal. The food was great, the company was fun, and the ambiance was perfect. Celebrating birthdays is always fun and special, because you get to be surrounded by good, close friends.
Happy Birthday, Stephanie!
&
Happy Friday to you all!
Also, yesterday I found this, and it was a really great reminder of how to be…





















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Filed under: Food, Friends

Sunday Bakeday


Remember Sunday funday? Well this is sorta the same thing, minus drinking. Most of my girlfriends don’t drink, so we find other things fun to do. This last Sunday I baked and had some girlfriends over to help, and eat cookies. I actually ended up baking the cookies the night before, and then frosting them on Sunday. They sure were yummy! We sat around chatted and snacked. I sure do love my girlfriends, they mean the world to me. Thanks girls for being in my life.
xo














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Filed under: Food, Friends