Hummingbird Cupcakes

What does it feel like to be 32?  Pretty amazing (and not much different than 31).  Yesterday was filled with texts, Facebook messages, phone calls, packages on the front steps and spending the whole day with Big Guy.  Want to know what I didn’t indulge in yesterday?  Bubbles.  I know – Big Guy was disappointed in me but trust me, I had plenty of pink bubbles on Sunday.

After a wonderful weekend of celebrating Kat and Josh, we got up Sunday morning and headed home but not without making a stop in Raleigh for an early birthday brunch.  Joule is one of Ashley Christensen’s restaurants that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as brunch on Saturday and Sunday.

I started with a cup of coffee and once I was caffeinated, I moved on to a Basil 75 – a spin on my favorite French 75.  I can’t wait to recreate this cocktail at home.  Incredibly refreshing.

BASIL 75 gin, basil, sparkling wine, lemon, and lime

We were both starving and I was more than excited to see the food arrive.  I ordered a “lighter” plate of food but fattened it up with a side of bacon.  Yes.  Yes, I did.

COLD-SMOKED SALMON with roasted beets, cream cheese, charred orange marmalade vinaigrette, and toast points

The roasted beets were so good especially with a little bit of the thick cream cheese.  And well, you can never go wrong with salmon.

And Big Guy went all out with his breakfast – I think we finally cured his hangover on Sunday…from Friday night.

SHORT RIB MILK GRAVY over buttermilk cheese biscuits

You could see the chunks of buttermilk in the biscuits so you knew they were legit.

After lunch we ran some errands in Raleigh including a trip to The Raleigh Wine Shop and Whole Foods for dinner supplies.

Once we arrived home and unpacked from the weekend, I was more than excited to pop open a bottle of pink bubbles and enjoy the afternoon.  I also got to open a few surprises.

For appy hour, we enjoyed one of my favorite things in life – a cheese plate!  We enjoyed some gouda and manchego along with crackers and olives.  Perfection.

I took Monday off work so I could simply enjoy a day of relaxation.  I enjoyed a slow breakfast with coffee and the Today Show along with a later-than-normal workout on my new yoga mat (Thank you, Terri and Butch!!!).  Big Guy and I ventured out for lunch and then ran a few errands to begin prepping for football season (basically we cleaned out all the tailgating stuff so it’s ready for Saturday).

Instead of having bubbles yesterday, I opted to make myself cupcakes.  I decided that it was my birthday and I would have cake if I wanted to.  But honestly, it was all about the brown sugar cream cheese frosting.  Hummingbird Cupcakes begin with a white cake base that is full of coconut, banana and pineapple.  The best part about this recipe – it only makes four cupcakes – perfect for dessert for two.

To say that yesterday ended on a sweet note would be an understatement.  Thank you to everyone that made me feel so special on my 32nd birthday.

Oh – and check out my new sweet shades that Big Guy got me.

Cheers to 32.

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