Thursday, May 19, 2011

Inspiration. Inspired.

After a short break from my new blog efforts, I'm back!
I thought my welcome back blog would be about my inspirations...   Inspirations for what, you may be asking?  INSPIRATIONS for birthday parties, holiday celebrations, and showers, baby or wedding.
For both of Carter's birthday parties I've always tried to pick a theme based on what he's interested in at that time, 1st was cars and trucks, 2nd was ELMO.  When planning both parties I started by searching for things to decorate with for the party, once I found something I LOVED I used that item to inspire my other choices. 

For his 1st birthday, it was the invitation I found at Target that inspired the color palette that I used along with the TONKA truck he got for his 1st Christmas.  The colors I'm talking about, the ones I fell in love with for his most special 1st birthday... orange, lime green and caribbean blue.

And for this 2nd birthday, I knew I couldn't go wrong with ELMO, one of his favorite characters right now and red is such a perfect color for a party.  I then moved on to finding some of the decorations again, that's when I found Cupcake Social on Etsy!  They have some of the coolest cupcake liners out there and they have so many other party decorations, too!  Visit the shop, you won't be disappointed!  Here's where my inspiration started...

HOUNDSTOOTH cupcake liners, I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!  Why was I so excited?  Well houndstooth is only like my favorite pattern/design right now! It's an old school design that is definitely making a comeback and as you can see not only in the fashion industry, but baking too!  I mean I love it so much that I've been drooling over this...

I found this at Pencil Shavings Paper on Etsy, if anyone finds they love it as much as I do or if you should want to get me an early birthday gift (insert smile)!

Here's a taste of more inspiration I've found at Cupcake Social and Sweet Estelle's Baking Supply, another great shop on Etsy!

How I wish I had some parties I could use these at!

What inspires your creativity?  I can't wait to hear!

Until next time!


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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My style, in words... and a link.

On Mother's Day I found my self flipping through an Ethan Allen catalog, a store that so far I've only dreamt of spending mass dollars at for what can best be described as the most beautiful furniture ever, well at least in my opinion.

As I'm drooling over the furniture in the magazine, I was finding a number of items that I thought were perfect for my "style".  I finally started paying attention to the style name of each piece I had fallen in love with and found they all had the same name...  seriously, every single piece!  And once I heard the name I knew it was meant to be... the name I would go on to use to describe my decorating style...  MODERN GLAMOUR!!

Would you like to see a glimpse of my style?  Maybe you'll find the style that best describes you!  Now just a small disclaimer...  while all of the pieces of the Modern Glamour collection at Ethan Allen are beautiful, it does not mean that I am in LOVE with every piece...  specifically I could live without the dining chairs and mirror, but everything else I would buy in a second!

What decorating style best describes you?


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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day!

For the last three years I have been blessed with the wonderful title of Mommy/Momma/Mom/Mother, a title that means more than the world to me!  After a long while, 3 years to be exact, of trying to concieve I was finally blessed with a little angel baby of my own, Carter Edwin.  He is my world, my everything, my prince, my LOVE!  Today is a day that at one time I thought I might never get to celebrate as a mother, but my dreams came true and I couldn't have asked for a more perfect, adorable, sweet, loving little boy!

And don't think I would forget...  my Mom!  Who I love with all my heart and am so thankful to have in my life as my mother, my best friend and as the grandmother to my little angel baby!  I love you Mom!

And then there's my mom-in-law...  I couldn't have asked for a better one if I had tried!  And she's an amazing grandmother to that cute little guy on her lap, too! 

Thank you to both of you for everything you do for us, we appreciate and love you more than words could ever explain!

Happy Mother's Day!


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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Simple, girly and chic.

What could be better than a pretty baby shower that celebrates everything girly, from flowers to cute little tea sandwiches.  This could possibly be the best tea party ever and all to celebrate the arrival of a wonderful little girl.  Enjoy!

Simple Chic Tea Party for a Baby Shower

Details. Details. Details.

I'm a big fan of Etsy and found most of my inspirations from there, please enjoy.

1.  Invitation:  This wonderful shabby chic baby shower invitation is designed and created by katie-did designs.  Best part is that you can buy them as a digital file and print them yourself or have the shop print it for you.

2.  Tea cups:  What tea party would be complete without these beautiful cups?  If you don't have a collection of your own, maybe someone you know has some you can borrow.  Or you can always have each guest bring their favorite tea cup...  Or check a local antique or thrift store for a good deal.  Luckily my mother has a collection that I can use, as long as I promise not to break any!

3.  Flowers. Flowers. Flowers.:  A few bouquets is all you need, and nothing too fancy after all you want it to be simple chic.  Some of the best deals that I've found are Costco (huge bouquets for not a lot of money), Trader Joe's, and the local Farmer's Market.

4.  Poms decor:  A little  touch of whimsy that you can hang from anywhere, courtesy of PomLove on Etsy.

5.  Tea sandwiches:  Check out any of your favorite recipe websites, books, etc.  My FAVE is FoodNetwork.

6.  Earl Grey cookies:  Seriously what better cookie could you find for a TEA PARTY?!  I found these lovelies at Whimsy & Spice on Etsy, again.  If you would prefer to make the cookies you can always search online for a recipe.

7.  Cupcakes:  I'm really obsessed with cupcakes lately and would plan to make my own.  What I love most about those in the picture is the colors, PINK and TURQUOISE... perfect for this party!  I love the contrast of the two colors and they both go so well with everything else planned, very chic!

8. Display towers: SERIOUSLY perfect for this party! Tea cups and coordinating vintage china used to create wonderful cupcake towers/tea towers found on Etsy (yes, again) at High Tea for Alice.

9.  More cookies:  This time I chose the beautiful and elegant cookie that is french macaroons, YUM!  These beauties are made by The Whimsical Spoon and they are another perfect addition, and once again courtesy of Etsy. I chose two different colors for the variety of both flavor and color.

10.  Fabric bunting:  With a bunting you get some added whimsy and a gift for the mother-to-be all in one. How perfect would this bunting be in a little girls room?!  And you can always get it in the colors/theme that the parents have planned for the new babies room.  I found this wonderful bunting at Starlit Nest on Etsy, the buntings come in many different colors and sizes.  REMEMBER, you can always make your own if you would like and have a little sewing experience.  Here's one I made for the prince's Elmo inspired birthday party.

I hope you found something inspirational as I did with all of these goodies!  I can't wait for the next party I get to plan, so until then!

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

A work in progress.

Hints as to the party inspirations I found today, the official post to come tomorrow...


Turquoise (maybe some PINK)


and Cupcakes!

Stay tuned to see what I've put together!

AND in the next couple of days I'll also be sharing my news about how I'm teaming up with Laura Winslow Photography for a unique opportunity to share my brand, The LOVE of Baby!

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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Spring and Summer, my FAVES!

Well really Summer is truely my favorite season, but Spring is a strong second!  Why you might be asking... well because all of my favorite fruits and vegetables begin showing up in the grocery stores.  Speaking of which, I recently saw rhubarb at Safeway and was instantly thinking of what I could make with it.  I've always loved my mom's strawberry rhubarb pie, crisp and cake... the options are never ending because she has a rhubarb plant in her garden and once it's ripe it becomes the primary ingredient in most spring and summer desserts...  YUM!

So it got me thinking that I should try a rhubarb inspired cupcake and of course it will be paired with strawberries, the only proper way to have rhubarb!  BUT... I have also been wondering how rhubarb would be with raspberries, anyone tried it?  I just might have to try it... 

 RASPBERRIES are another favorite summer fruit of mine! 

And I would love to go pick a BIG bucket of them this year at Biringer Farms in Arlington...  anyone wanna go with me, consider this a "Save the Date" invitation.

And that get's me wondering... what's your favorite spring or summer time produce?  And what's your favorite way to have it?

Pics and review to come for my rhubard inspired cupcake, stay tuned!


And I can't forget...

(My little prince turns 2 today, boy how time flies.)
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Monday, May 2, 2011

New computer, a work in progress...

Recently, as in just this weekend, I was the recipient of a wonderful hand-me-down...  an 18 month old Dell laptop with almost all the bells and whistles that a girl could want or need...  Thanks, Dad!  

I'm really enjoying my new laptop, the hubby and I now each have our own, so EXCITING, right?!  The only problem is that all of my files, pictures and other goodies are on "the hubby's" computer...  I stayed up the other night after the big birthday party and tried to transfer them over with a cable we bought years ago, but I may be running into the problem that the new computer uses Windows 7 and "the hubby's" uses Vista, and BTW I say "may" because I wasn't in the mood to install the software onto either computer to see if that would make it work, so I don't know forsure that it doesn't work.  And boy do I need those files, everytime I go to do something Etsy, Facebook or blog related I'm having to remind myself that I don't have the files I need on the new laptop...  kinda irritating and one would think that I would take the few minutes necessary to get the files copied, but nope, I haven't talked myself into that one yet.

I'm so excited to continue my adventures with the new laptop, maybe I'll find some time tomorrow to finally transfer everything... 

I'll keep you posted on this whole silly ordeal.

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Sunday, May 1, 2011

Needed relaxation.

After the busy day I had yesterday, I am definitely enjoying a lazy day at home today! 

Carter's party went fabulously, and we are so thankful for the friends and family that came to help us celebrate our little prince turning 2!  We had delicious food, if I may say so myself, and great company...  here's a recap of how the party went.

We started off with opening presents...  yes, presents! Carter could hardly contain himself while we were waiting for everyone to arrive.

**Lesson learned for Momma and Daddy- Save the toys for last (after we opened a toy he wanted to play with it, rather than opening the rest of his presents and then playing with all of his toys, I know typical for most kids).

Next came dinner, baked spaghetti with italian sausage, french bread, and salad...  YUM!

Then dessert, the moment I was waiting for.  First I had to set up the beautiful dessert table and then take pictures, pictures and more pictures, all while the kids were practically begging for cupcakes.  I was very happy with how the completed table turned out, see for yourself.

Last, but not least, it was time for Carter to blow out his candles...  he did such a good job and had so much fun with help from his cousins and best friend, I hope to post a video soon.  ADORABLE!

And finally, a picture of our prince, our love, our everything!

Now time for the details!

I had so much fun making so many of the decorations for the party, I can't wait for my next opportunity to plan a party!

1.  The outfit-  A cute button up striped shirt from Target paired with his special Birthday Edition tie made by me, and in red of course because it was an Elmo themed party.

2.  A Happy Birthday banner made by Grandma Cathy and myself.   I first printed out the outline of the letters for Happy Birthday Carter from the comput,r in the font I wanted, and then I colored them in to look like the letters on Elmo's World.  Grandma then cut all of them out while I was glued them to a piece of art paper that Carter had drawn on earlier that day (this part was not planned, but was perfect and personalized the banner even more.)

3.  I made the fabric bunting with two fabircs that I happened to find on sale one day, and they just happened to go with the colors of the party...  PERFECT! 

4.  We bought a few Elmo decorations including some balloons, cupcake liners, dessert plates and tablecloth.

5.  We chose to have the simple table decoration of a picture of our prince in a bold and fun frame that matched the green color we had chosen for decorations.

6.  Dinner table-  We planned for the food we served for dinner to be all of Carter's favorites, spaghetti, salad with ranch dressing, fruit and veggie trays, and french bread.

7.  The Dessert Table
  • I made cake pops, in red and white candy coating, that I displayed in a plastic popcorn tub that I picked up at the dollar store... perfect since Carter loves popcorn. 
  • I also made all of the cupcakes, I chose to make two flavors and did them in both regular and mini size.  The flavors were Cookies n' Cream with vanilla cake and Strawberries n' Cream with strawberry cake and drizzle...  my favorite was the strawberry. 
  • I found some really cool paper straws that I got in red and aqua. I then knew I wanted clear glasses for the milk and chocolate milk, which looked really cool with the paper straws. I really would have liked to get glass milk bottles, but I felt the $12 for the 200 cups (one word...  Costco) was a much better buy than the $30 for 6 bottles, especially when I needed at least 20.  And in the end I LOVED the look of the glasses with a colorful straw!
  • Carter's cake-  Made by me again; nothing too fancy, but more importantly... made with LOVE by Momma!
I had such a great time planning and excuting this special party and I hope you enjoyed it, too!  Until next time!


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