Sunday, February 26, 2012

St. Patrick's Day { cookies }


After my success with the sugar cookies that I decorated for Valentine's Day, I've decided that I will be making some for St. Patrick's Day.

And... now a cookie decorating day with my bestest friend is in the works { smile } 

Of course that means I need to brainstorm some cookie designs...
So I turned to the internet and Pinterest for some inspiration.
{ finding just what I was looking for was harder than I thought }

Besides the usual/traditional clover and leprechaun designs (not quite the style I wanted), I was able to find a few examples that got my creative juices flowing.



{ my Irish heritage LOVES these! }
These creative cookies were made by A Dozen Eggs Bake Shoppe...  
they're definitely not your average St. Patrick's Day cookies and they totally represent the holiday and country of Ireland.  
My favorite has got to be the claddagh cookie!  

It's very likely that some of my cookies will reflect the colors of the Irish flag thanks to these cookies!



Green plaid cookies!
I am in love with this style of cookie...
using textures and patterns from fabric to decorate the cookies is PERFECT.

Speaking of patterns... don't be surprised if you see some houndstooth in this next batch of cookies
{ smile }

Oh!  and I'm still contemplating how to incorporate a rainbow and pot of gold into my plans.


These little guys will come in very handy, only one missing is a clover.
And I know I said it was cliche, but I've got some ideas to make them a little less traditional.


What crafts and yummies do you have planned for St. Patrick's Day?  




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Saturday, February 25, 2012

the LOVE of chevron { aka zig-zag }



Chevron print has to be one of my fave patterns  { along with houndstooth }

Remember my Valentine's Day cookies inspired by houndstooth?! 
And if only you could see my collection of houndstooth fabric... 
I still haven't found the perfect project to use it for, but in the mean time it looks great in my fabric collection.

Now enough about houndstooth, lets get to the star of this post... CHEVRON.
I don't know what it is about this pattern, but I seriously cannot get enough of it!

Chevron is a very versatile pattern and is used in so many different applications...
 from home decor to cakes/cookies/cucpakes.

Here are some of my favorite decor ideas/items in chevron.  
My only recommendation would be to limit the amount of Chevron that you use in the same room...  
spread your love for chevron around your entire house  { smile }

A chevron throw would be a nice little touch for any room (living room, bedroom or even a nursery).  This beautiful throw is by Jonathan Adler, you can get it here at Layla Grayce.
{ I especially love the grey... another obsession of mine }



A chevron throw pillow is an easy way to add a pop of color and texture to your room... and they're everywhere.  I found some great pillows at Target recently that you might love, check them out here.



Or how about a chevron floor pouf from West Elm, get it here.  
Floor poufs are another must have item right now, so if you love poufs and chevron this is perfect one for you.  This would look great in a child's playroom/nursery or even in your living room.
{ And don't get me started on all of the floor pouf options out there...  I'll save them for a future post }



A nice accent chair upholstered in a chevron fabric would look wonderful in your living room/bedroom/home office.  This prefect little chair is from Urban Outfitters, you can get it here.
{ it's at the top of my list for when we get a house }



I love these floor to ceiling chevron drapes... simple, yet elegant and again they add a pop of color to the otherwise neutral room.



And now since you've surely fallen in love with chevron...how about an accent wall!  And again it's so versatile you could do it in literally any room of your place, but I would only recommend an accent wall otherwise it's a tad overwhelming.
{ I would love to have an accent wall like this in my future sewing room }



And is this bathroom not absolutely perfect?!  If you hadn't guessed, I totally love the chevron tile floors.
{ dream bathroom - alert! }


DIY Chevron projects


This tutorial from Max & Me allows you to add a touch of chevron to your home that's budget friendly!
Or...
try this similar tutorial from The House of Smiths.




Or you can make this cute decorative tray...  
get the tutorial here from Martha Stewart.
{ I just might have to make one of these with some of my houndstooth fabric }




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Saturday, February 18, 2012

It's Saturday and I've been cooking...


I thought I would give you a quick update on the delicious/yummy creations I've made today for the family.

First for breakfast...


We had Mini Puffed Oven Pancakes...  or as we call them in my family mini dutch babies.



And here they are straight out of the oven, before the delicious and oh, so simple berry sauce is added.

My parents and I absolutely loved these and I highly recommend you make them yourself
{ hello little brother... I'm talking to you }

And before I forget... get the recipe for the puffed pancakes/ dutch babies and berry sauce here.

I strayed from the recipe and directions a tad...
Instead of using a mini muffin tin, I used my regular sized one and I was able to get 7 pancakes out of it, but I kept the cooking time the same.
I also added a touch (about a 1/4 tsp) of vanilla extract.
I chose to make a raspberry sauce, so I used about a cup of frozen raspberries and 3 tbsp of raspberry preserves.

ENJOY!


Lunch was at Subway, followed by a quick trip to Country Village to visit the chicken, duckies and choo-choo store.


And for dinner...


Creamy tomato penne with shrimp
(aka Penne a la Betsy by The Pioneer Woman)

Another delicious meal to add to the recipe "box" to be made again.
Get the recipe here from The Pioneer Woman.


Ok, now I've got to get back to the family...
have a wonderful weekend, lovelies!



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Thursday, February 16, 2012

The perfect chocolate cupcake...


In my opinion, the recipe that I am about to share with you is the most amazing chocolate (mocha) cupcake recipe, EVER.



Like seriously.  Could these cupcakes be anymore perfect?!
The prefect dome.
A dark luscious/rich chocolate color and (trust me) flavor!
{ And that's coming from someone who tends to prefer vanilla cake over chocolate }
I seriously can't find anything wrong with these little lovely cupcakes!


I've tried a couple of other chocolate cupcake recipes and was horribly disappointed with the taste and look...   you can imagine my joy over finding this recipe!

Okay.  Enough of my rambling...  and on to where I got the recipe.

You can thank Bakers Royale.  I've used the following recipe(s)...


The chocolate cupcake part of the recipe is almost the exact same for the two recipes, except for the addition of peppermint extract and the candy pieces.  If you take all of these out you have the most wonderful chocolate cupcake recipe.

{ BTW, don't be worried about the coffee...  it actually compliments the chocolate and you can't even taste it, but if you're still worried about the coffee then just substitute hot water instead }

Here are my Double Chocolate Mocha Crunch cupcakes { minus the crunch }... 


I made these for a good-bye party that we had at work today... for a special someone who has helped me get where I am today in my professional career.  I am so very fortunate to have had her as my manager & mentor for the last (almost) five years.  
Thank you for everything!


Okay, now!  Gotta get to bed...  I'm working an early shift/long day at work tomorrow... 
and on a Friday { yucky }

Bonus is that Grandma Kelly and Papa are coming over for the weekend { BIG smile }




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Sunday, February 12, 2012

A little something I found on the camera... starring the prince.


I finished my Valentine's cookies { smile }
And it was a lot of fun to make them!


All three styles that I made...


The love ones are my fave...


I love the houndstooth design/the scalloped square cookie/the PINK/and the love...
so EVERYTHING!!


And here's a little something I found on the camera... 
Here's the first installment

ENJOY!
{ I could watch this a hundred times }



video


The prince absolutely loves this paintable rubber ducky from Melissa & Doug.





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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Saturday projects.


Yay!  It's Saturday!!


And I'll be baking up some sugar cookies for Valentine's Day { I'm so excited }

Oh and let's not forget that once the hubby get's home from work then we'll be 
sharing in the fun of organizing/cleaning our little place 
{ not quite as excited about this one, but it's gotta get done }



I'll be using some of these...


Photo courtesy of The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle
to make some of these { smile }

These are the recipes/resources I'll be using...


I { LOVE } the weekends!
Why must they go by sooo fast!

Enjoy your Saturday and Sunday, lovelies!





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Monday, February 6, 2012

quickie { Instagram } catch-up


I just realized that I'm a couple of weeks behind on my Week in { Instagram }...
so here's a catch-up post for you.


big boy Thomas underwears { potty training is a work in progress }
watching Thomas on the laptop = heaven
getting in a quick nap during Caillou
mid-morning snack of roasted garlic hummus and baby carrots


a few goodies I picked up from Michael's { Valentine's Day }
furbabies on our walk
the hubby and prince during our walk { the weekend weather was AMAZING }
LOVE Menchie's frozen yogurt and fresh fruit { and fruity pebbles }


a very important sewing project { I finished it in one day } 
the matching wall art

Have a wonderful week, lovelies!




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Saturday, February 4, 2012

DIY { Party Decorations }


With the prince's { third } birthday only months away my brain is stuck in planning mode...
which is not a bad thing, by any means { smile }

I've devoted an entire Pinterest board to birthday ideas...  check it out here.

And as you all know I've already blogged about a few of my plans here, feel free to refresh your memory if you've kinda forgotten what I'll be doing { wink }


And now that brings us to today's post... 

While searching for ideas for the prince's party I've found a number of DIY tutorials for some fun party decorations.  I'm still deciding on which decorations I will be making, but I just had to share everything I've found with all of you.

DIY is always a win in my book... not only can you save money { usually }, but there's also the personal satisfaction of knowing that you made the decorations yourself...  Oh! and how about that way your decorations coordinate { fabulously } with your party theme/colors.

All right. All right.  Now on to the tutorials I've found...


Buntings

{ one }  From A Beautiful Mess Blog, ten fabulous bunting ideas made with yarn/fabric/paper/ribbon/tissue paper... best of all most can be made with scraps you may have around the house.  They'll add just the right amount of whimsy to any party, for girl or boy 
{ smile }
Get the tutorials here.

{ two }  A simple bunting made from old book pages with added embellishments, this fabulous idea comes from Simple as That.  Hearts were added to this bunting for Valentine's Day, but you could use other shapes or even just letters to create a bunting perfect for any occasion.  
.:This bunting is actually the inspiration for the one I'll be making for the prince's party, but instead of book pages I plan to use newspaper and then paint the letters on for the message:.
Get the tutorial here.

{ three }  A bunting made from cupcake liners, perfect for anyone who has a collection like this...


This simple bunting idea comes from One Charming Party, perfect for a baking party but still versatile enough that it could also be used for a birthday or baby/bridal shower.
Get the tutorial here.



{ four }  A lollipop tree/topiary... only like the most perfect decoration for a children's birthday party...  I absolutely love this idea from Meet the Dubiens, you may remember me loving on this here.
Get the tutorial here.

{ five }  A fun play on the stylish sunburst mirrors, only made with cool striped paper straws.  
.:This is a must-do for the prince's birthday, I'm already obsessed with the paper straws...  now I have a reason to buy a BUNCH of them.  AND... as I mentioned here this will transition wonderfully as decoration for his bedroom after the party:.
Get the tutorial here from Woman's Day.

{ six }  Mason jar's tinted to match your party colors!  What could be more perfect?!  These can be used for so many things... like holding utensils/vases/candle holder.  
I found this wonderful decor idea at Momtastic.
Get the tutorial here.



For the dessert table

{ seven }  A cake stand made out of a a terracotta flower pot and saucer...  simply paint each piece in the color you want and then glue together with hot glue or other adhesive.  Such an easy project and will give your dessert table added depth.
Get a similar tutorial here from Once Wed...
 seeing as I couldn't find the post related to my inspiration picture.

{ eight }  Colorful dessert stands made from thrift store finds...  who doesn't love a project that is budget-friendly?!  This fabulous creation is from Centsational Girl.
Get the tutorial here.

{ nine }  And this cookie/cupcake stand is The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle's take on Centsational Girl's dessert stands, made smaller to hold cookies and cupcakes and also with a glass dome.
Check out all of her creations here for some inspiration.
{ Did I mention that I'm absolutely in LOVE with this blog?!  Seriously.  She makes BEAUTIFUL cookies along with the most fabulous tutorials so others, like me, can try to make them too!  Check out The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle, like now...  you'll love it!! }

{ ten }  What dessert table would be complete with out jars of candy?!  Well now instead of spending unnecessary amounts of money on apothecary jars you can make them yourself... and it is so very easy! You can use items from thrift stores or even the Dollar Store, along with a tube of E-6000 adhesive.  Now you're ready to make some jars, for a fraction of the price of store bought ones.  
.:I wasn't able to find the tutorial that went along with the above picture, but the picture is kinda self-explanatory...  you'll need a glass candle holder, a glass vase and a tube of E-6000 adhesive ( as I mentioned above).
Apply some adhesive to the top of the candle holder and then place the vase on top and allow the adhesive to dry and bond...  ta da!  All done!:.



Tissue poms and more...

{ eleven }  A yarn chandelier, a modern take on the tissue poms?  I think so.  Perfect as a backdrop for any party and can be customized to match your party colors.  Thanks to Libby Lane Press for this fabulous idea.
Get the tutorial here.

{ twelve }  Speaking of tissue poms...  how's about a tutorial so you can make them yourself!!  AMAZING!  This tutorial is courtesy of The Busy Budgeting Mama.
Get the tutorial here.

{ thirteen }  Colorful strips of vellum paper sewn together to make a mobile... hanging above your table or as a backdrop to your dessert table.  Modern whimsy at it's best, as usual customize the colors to coordinate with your party.  This wonderful idea is courtesy of Project Wedding.
Get the tutorial here.

{ fourteen }  A new take on the tissue poms...  fabric poms!  I think I might love these more than the original, to me they are more sturdy and would last forever.  The tissue while delicate and pretty just doesn't seem like it would hold up as well as fabric would.  So if you're looking for a pom decoration for a party that can then be transitioned to your little one's bedroom, then these would be perfect 
{ remember...  you could always skip them as a party decoration 
and just go straight for putting them in the bedroom, too }
This wonderful creation is from Once Wed.
Get the tutorial here.


My Gosh!  That was a lot of information... thank you for sticking with me through it all { smile }
And I hope that you found something you loved!

If you wanna see all of the DIY decorations I've found then check out my Pinterest board here.

You can also follow me on Pinterest here.

What?  
You aren't using Pinterest yet?!  
Oh. My. Gosh.  How is that possible?!  
You must start immediately, it's only like the best thing EVER.  
If you need an invitation to join just leave your email in a comment below 
or email it to me with my Email link to the right 
{ smile }

Happy Saturday, lovelies!



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