Friday, January 29, 2010

Simply Chic

Happy Friday everyone!
I wanted to share this "Simply Chic" invitation & notecard that I created for a 30th birthday.

Very feminine yet classy...
This will have her guests excited about her big day!

I love the pearl trim on both of these!
These will be perfect to write a note of gratitude!

What a beautiful paperie suite...

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Not Your Typical Snack Packs

I popped over to the Ritzy Bee blog (which I absolutely adore!) and found these little cuties...
But not your ordinary snacks...
These are done to the tee...
Now who wouldn't just love these?


Okay, I am loving how adorable these are! Would these not be perfect
if you were taking a bunch of little girls on an outing?
Or how about if you & "the girls" were going to spend a relaxing weekend at the spa?
These would make nice munchies in the hotel!
How about this midnight snack?
Wouldn't this be great for like an after prom party,
a favor to send home with guests after the party
or even a sweet treat to leave in the room for overnight guests.
This one is my fave!
Wouldn't this be perfect as a gift for a neighbor who just moved in,
a special friend who needs a smile or even a housewarming gift

The possibilities are endless, no?
And if you really look at them, they are not hard.
They just require a little time & love to put them together.
The recipient would be most impressed! I know I would be!

Thanks Ritzy Bee for finding these!

Images are from the Ritzy Bee & Martha Stewart Weddings

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Place to be Creative

I must say that I am very lucky to have a room to be creative. First, it was our living room that was never used. Second, it was my husband's home office and now I have claimed it for my own. However, it is not AT ALL the way I want or envision it to be...
Crafts room island and cabinet
Now, this is what I call a place to be creative, no?
I'm loving the island
and the countertops
and the glass cupboards..
okay...I love it all!
I think what I really want is a kitchen without the appliances...
Look at this pretty...
Totally love the black hutch...I could really fill that baby up!
And the island...
with the padded stools...
and the countertops...
and the storage...
Just think what I could create!
And I found this on The Bottom of the Ironing Basket...
So appropriate...don't you think?

I guess it doesn't really matter whether you create in a spectacular creative room (sure would be nice though!) or at your kitchen table, as long as you are doing something you love...

Top image from Better Homes & Gardens
Second image from Home*Decor

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I'll Have a Key Lime Colada, Please

While browsing over at the Swanky Table, I stumbled across this most delicious looking drink...a Key Lime Colada. Now, I am a big fan of key lime pie so of course my mouth was watering just looking at refreshing...

Is this beautiful or what? Does this not make you want to recreate this? And the graham cracker lined rim...aaahhh....I'm in heaven! Sir...I'll have one of those please!

Thank you Swanky Tables for going to Hawaii!

Key Lime Colada

1 oz. vanilla rum
1 to ¾ oz. Keke Beach Key Lime Cream liqueur
1 splash piƱa colada mix and pineapple juice
1 cup of ice

Recipe via: HAWAI'I Magazine by Marriott Kolohe’s Beach Bar & Grill

Monday, January 25, 2010

Crayons Anyone?

As a teacher (who is loving this year off & is not sure if she wants to go back ever) & of course a mom, I am always coming across crayons...broken, on the floor, under desks, in a corner, on the counter, etc., you get my drift. Well Maddycakes Muse has come up with a sweet solution for all these orphaned crayons...

I am totally loving this monogram!
Bye-bye misfits...

Hello sweeties!
1. Peel paper off crayons.
2. Break crayons into small pieces.
3. Spray cookie sheet/muffin tin with cooking spray.
4. Place broken crayon 3/4 full into cookie sheet spaces or muffin tins.
5. It looks better if you place red-orange-pink-yellow together and blue-green-purple together. Otherwise, the colors can run together and make brown.
6. Preheat oven to 350 and cook for about 8 minutes.
7. When they are 100% liquid, take out of the oven. Let them cool until hard.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Football Cupcakes

Since Superbowl will be arriving shortly, it's time for us to start planning a fabulous Superbowl party, right?
Here are some adorable cupcakes with wrappers that would jazz up any dessert table and have your guests most impressed with your presentation...

Football Cupcake

Photo Credit: John Sparano

To Make These Cupcakes:

  • Bake a batch of chocolate cupcakes and ice them with white frosting.
  • I purchased the football paper at Michaels - it actually feels like plastic,
  • which makes it more durable.
  • Make a pattern for the cupcake wrap by wrapping white paper (or cardstock)
  • around the cupcake and trimming it to fit.
  • Place the cupcake wrap pattern on the football paper and cut it out.
  • Cut 4 vertical slits into the front of the cupcake wrap for the laces.
  • Make 2 slits on top and 2 slits on the bottom as in the picture.
  • Insert the shoelace tip into a top slit from the backside of the cupcake wrap
  • and gently pull it through to the front (think sewing!).
  • Pull the lace almost to the end leaving about an inch tail.
  • Then, insert the shoelace tip from the front-side of the cupcake wrap
  • into the other top slit that is horizontally across
  • from the first slit and pull the lace through.
  • Repeat the lacing that you just did for the remaining 2 bottom slits.
  • Then bring the lace under the wrap to the front and thread the lace under the horizontal laces
  • that are on the cupcake wrap so it resembles a football.
  • Bring the excess lace over the top rim of the wrap and tape all lace ends into place
  • on the backside of the cupcake wrap. Trim off the excess lace.
  • (Tip: Use the shoelace tip as if it were a needle as the slits can be tricky to thread.
  • If you accidentally cut off the tip, just wrap scotch tape around the shoelace
  • to make the lacing process easier.)
  • Wrap the cupcake in the football wrap and tape the back to keep it closed.
  • Image and directions is from Celebrations featuring Jeanne Benedict
  • The Hostess with the Mostess also featured this.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pinwheel Birthday

I have seen this party lately all over different blogs. Cute as can be...
A "Pinwheel" Party. I think pinwheels are really in right now.
The invite said something like, "William is "turning" four...get it? Turning? Like a pinwheel?
This party is from My Life, My Loves. Take a peek...

How adorable was this? Every detail thought out and executed perfectly. Don't you agree?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes

How many of you are a fan of Ina Garten (The Barefoot Contessa)? I absolutely love her and she visits me everyday at 5pm. I just love her motto..."back to basics." I love her on the food network and I love all of her cookbooks! Today I made her Chocolate Ganache cupcakes (for Goosie GIrl's school faculty meeting). I do believe they were the easiest, most delicious things I've ever had. This was the second time I had made them and I've decided that these are my "go to" when I need sweets that are yummy & fast.

Picture of Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes Recipe

Here is the recipe. You definitely should give it a try...
1 stick of butter at room temp
1 cup sugar
4 extra large eggs at room temp
11 ounces of Hershey's chocolate syrup (one can)
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules (I used these the first time but did not today)

For the Ganache:
1/2 cup heavy cream
8 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips (Today I used Dove chocolate)
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules (Again, I did not use this today)

Preheat oven to 325.
Line a muffin pan with liners
Cream the butter & sugar until light & fluffy
Add the eggs, one at a time
Mix in the chocolate syrup & vanilla
Add the flour & coffee granules & mix until just combined
Do NOT overmix or cupcakes will be tough
I poured mixture into a ziplock bag, cut a tiny end off and squeezed it into muffin liners
You can fill them to the top as they don't rise
Bake for 30 minutes or until just set
Don't overbake!
Let them cool

For Ganache:
Cook heavy cream, chocolate chips & instant coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth & warm, stirring occassionally.
Dip tops of cupcakes into ganache or pour ganache in ziplock bag, cut tip off and squeeze onto top of cupcake.

I added cupcake toppers to the finished product & I had instant cuteness & delishness

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Valentine Fortune Cookies

Martha has another sweet idea...
She just rocks, doesn't she?
This time it's for Valentine's Day.
How cute would these be as a favor for guests when they leave...
or how about a craft for centers at school...
or even attached to a Valentine card?

Simple & Sweet...

Felt Fortune Cookies

Felt Fortune Cookie How-To
1. Using fabric shears, cut a 4 1/2-inch-diameter circle from a piece of felt.

Cut a piece of matching ribbon slightly shorter than 4 1/2 inches.

Using wire cutters, cut a piece of floral wire slightly shorter than the length of ribbon.

2. Using craft glue, affix the wire to the middle of the felt circle.
Glue ribbon on top, covering the wire. Let dry 30 minutes.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Cards Any Time Of The Year?

It's a known fact that when Christmas rolls around, one of the things you do is send cards, right? Many times we consider it to be "a chore" rather than a blessing. I know none of us feel that way, right? wink**wink

To be honest...this is so horrible...I didn't even send Christmas cards out this past year...GASP!

Well, who said that cards were only suppose to be sent at Christmas? Everyone expects them then anyway. What about surprising friends & family with cards another time of the year? Maybe a New Year's card, Valentine's, Easter, St. Patrick's Day, Happy Middle of the Year? A time that is maybe, not so busy. Where you might actually "enjoy" the process? Is that possible?

I think this is also a great marketing idea for businesses as well. I know I get excited when I get a card in the mail, you too? My hub's business didn't get around to holiday cards this year either...go figure...So...instead, I created one for 2010. He has gotten a good response from them, I think, because people weren't expecting them. It was a nice surprise...

So...what do you think??

Friday, January 15, 2010

Get-Away House

Since we've arrived at the weekend, I thought this was most appropriate...
I've found my get-away house...

Tell me this doesn't look inviting and so relaxing! I could definitely see myself with a glass of wine or sweet tea sitting in those adirondeck chairs...uh...yes, please! I'll take it!

image from Absolutely Beautiful Things

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Champagne Toasts

I apologize for the lack of blogging this week but I have been having major computer issues. Nice, huh? Since I only have a moment right now, I thought I'd show you a pic from Martha Stewart (that I've been seeing all over) that I can't seem to get out of my mind...

Is this the most beautiful display of champagne you've ever seen? I just love it! You know, we seem to only talk about champagne during New Year's but it's really perfect for any time of the year. How about serving champagne when you have a few of the girls over? Wouldn't that be a nice, refreshing change? How about popping that cork for the small daily celebrations? Just a bubbly thought...

Here are Martha's directions to achieve this gorgeous look:

Tiny roses add an elegant detail to your champagne toast. To make the garnishes, insert a toothpick into the base of each blossom at an angle of a little less than 45 degrees. Cut the stems cleanly about 1-inch shorter than the length of the toothpick; you may have to adjust length depending on the weight of the bloom. Place each toothpick just inside of a rim, letting the roses balance delicately on top.

Cheers Everyone!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Happy Friday!

I hope your Friday (and weekend) is sweet!

Cupcakes in wraps by queene of tartes.
image from flickr

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A "Game Night" Birthday Party

I know that I am always trying to come up with new ideas for birthdays and sometimes, frankly, it is rather difficult, so when I stumbled upon this idea, I knew I had to share...
A Game Night Birthday...
Sounds so basic, right? But sometimes, isn't basic good?
Kids love to play games and what better way to keep them entertained?
Really, though, this party is anything but basic. Take a look at the eye candy...
Make Merry Events did a fantastic job...

Game Night invitation

Game Night candy & cupcake table

Game Night candy and cupcake table

Game Night candy and cupcake table

Perfect for girls or boys; sleepovers or afternoons;

and maybe even some peace for the parents?