Monday, January 31, 2011

Grand Dad's Tool Chest

I've posted before about this sweet chest that my husband's grandfather made out of reclaimed wood and wooden crates and boxes.  He had it in his garage for YEARS.  It held misc. tools and parts to the antique cars he collected and LOVED.  Matt and I have always been attracted to it.  I can remember him showing it to me about 25 years ago!  Knowing our weird attachment to it, Matt's grandmother graciously offered it to us last year. We scrubbed (well Matt did and I supervised, lol) it down and vacuumed and wiped all of it's million drawers.  We've been slowly collecting mismatched crystal knobs to replace the mismatched wooden knobs and we are probably half way done at this point.  It's sits lovingly in all it's rustic glory behind our couch as a console table.  I love that when you open the different drawers they have great vintage lettering on some of them advertising shoes or produce.  (I we thought this re-use, re-new, re-do was a new idea?!)  She has a few more knobs than last time I showed her off, I figured it was about time again.  Do you have something that you hold close to your heart because of it's sentiment?

She may not be as lovely and refined as these apothecary and card catalog cabinets but we love her just the same!

photo from shutterstock

photo from ebay

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Valentine Cupcakes To Go With Those Liners

A sea of yummy cupcakes!

Stiff peak
A couple days ago, I posted an easy and fun Valentine's day craft using pretty little polka dot cupcake liners.  Today I woke up feeling like baking!I have a lot of leftover cupcake liners so cupcakes were the obvious choice. I'd MUCH rather bake than make dinner...actually I'd more than likely rather eat dessert than dinner too!  I've been inspired so much lately by the gobs of PINK everywhere for Valentines day so of course, I had to make pink cupcakes  in pink polka dots too!  The weather today was messing with my back so I cheated and quickly made a box French Vanilla cake into cupcakes.  NEVER be ashamed to make a box cake! ;-)  I knew I wanted to make home made frosting (now that's something I almost ALWAYS do, just because I like to!) so I wanted to put the time into the frosting not the cake.  Today I choose a meringue frosting, one of my favorites!  I love meringue frosting because it's fat free and so tasty. DID YOU HEAR WHAT I SAID?  It is FAT FREE! YUM!  You are going to LOVE that because you will soon realize, as you are scraping the side of the bowl and you lick a little bit off of your fingers, that you will NOT be offering the beater to the kids because you want it ALL for yourself. FAT FREE! 

Pastry bag and pretty pink gel color
As I mentioned, I love making homemade frosting.  There's a funny little story on my old blog that involves FRENCH BUTTERCREAM(can you say DECADENT?), cupcakes and a sweet dog named Chester. It's here .

This frosting is delicious and oh, did I already mention that it's FAT FREE?  It's a 3 ingredient recipe: egg whites, white sugar and vanilla.  You cook it a bit then whisk it till it begs for mercy and you end up with LOVELY, FAT FREE glossy peaks.  I added a hint of pink color to mine because Callie wanted pink frosting.  If you do this, use a gel color so you won't dilute the proportions.  There is a recipe for this fabulous frosting HERE .  Don't forget, it's fat free!
Naked cupcakes!

All gussied up.  Now that's better!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Valentine's Day Craft

 Is it just me or are these looong, icy winter days just aching for something fun to cheer them up?  I'm wondering if that's why Valentine's Day is smack dab in the middle of these dreary winter days.  A box of chocolates and some pretty roses sure would make it pass by a bit quicker!  You know what else does?  This fun easy craft!  I'm sure you've all seen this around blogland, it's too cute to miss!  I also LOVE those sweet fabric/paper bunting flags as well.  I thought I'd maybe kill 2 birds with one stone (I don't know why I'm using that phrase, it's one I really don't like and believe me, I'd never kill a bird with a stone or any other thing for that matter!)...where was I?  Oh yes, give the kids something to do AND make decorations for Peyton's party all at the same time!
 To get started, just gather some cupcake wrappers in whatever color/pattern you like and get some mini
ones and JUMBO and some coffee filters too!  Now you will need a needle and some coordinating thread.  Then you just thread them all through making sure you don't pull them too hard or they'll pull through the big knot you have at the end of your thread.  Voila'  you have a pretty little banner/garland!  There are some very COOL cupcake wrappers on the market right now so you'll find something to match any party you are having!  I also learned recently that you should just bake your cupcakes in a plain wrapper and then when they are cooled place that into your decorative wrapper.  It won't hurt anything if you bake in the decorative ones but they don't look nearly as bright and vibrant after you bake in them.

One of the REALLY cool stores I've found while looking for baking goodies is Layer Cake Shop  This little store is so FULL of FUN and RETRO cupcake toppers and other baking goodies that you'll feel like your are transported back to your childhood.  I clearly remember standing in front of the glass case in the bakery and being mesmerized by the sweet little scenes being played out by the plastic figurines on top of the snow white buttercream. Opening the cake box and catching your first glimpse of your birthday cake was pure MAGIC.   I can't wait to put Peyton's delightful little plastic ballerina's on her cupcakes.  I hope I can make a little magic too!

If you'd like to check out some other great sources for party goodies here are some I've found:
Bake It Pretty
The Sugar Diva
Cupcake Wrapture
B.Nute  fabulous vintage style invites

Monday, January 24, 2011

Pink Obsession

photo from
See me over there with my FUN pink hair? ...well not really but in my mind!  My friends would probably tell you that I can easily become obsessed with whatever project I'm currently working on.  Right now, that project would be little Ms. P's 9th birthday party.  It's going to be so PINKALICIOUS!  

January often finds Matt and I smack dab in some kind of project.  The cold Maryland winters make us hunker down and pick something in our house that we need to tear apart and "update".  Last year, it was the now infamous reading nook and black kitchen cabinets.  This year we are all about the organization and de-clutterfying (I KNOW you love when I make up my own words. I'm a regular SNOOP DOG!)  Considering that organization is NOT mine or Matt's middle name, this is a big step for us! I even have a sweet little sign in my kitchen I got from here that says "Those who are organized are just too lazy to look for things."  I took SO many clothes to Goodwill last week that the nice GW volunteer asked if I had anything left in my closet!  Of course when one makes a trip to drop off unnecessary items to Goodwill, one must ALSO go into said Goodwill and see if they have something that one MUST take home.  I found a sweet cut glass footed ice cream dish that happens to match the 5 I already now thats a SET! WHOO HOOO!  I'll be showing them off at the PINKALICOUS party for Peyton.  Speaking of the party, I also picked up these ornate fabulously expensive plastic-wood frames.  Pretty, huh?  Well, not so much, BUT give those babies a coat of high gloss bubblegum pink and they will look FAB on the table with the menu full of candy in them!  Stay tuned for that post in March! ...see, I guess I CAN be organized (or obsessed) considering I'm planning almost a month and a half ahead for a party!  Now if I can only find a pink wig and a sweet pink apron...

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The WINNER is...And thinking PINK!!!

FIRST of all, let me announce the WINNER of my SCENTSY give away... TRACIE from the stunning little blog, My Petite Maison!  Tracie, shoot me an email at and I'll get your FUN plug in warmer and scent of the month into the mail!

Okay, you are probably wondering about all this PINK SUGARY GOODNESS.  My youngest is having her 9th birthday in March and she had decided she wants candy, ice cream and PINK TUTUS!  That girl always knows exactly what she wants!  I'm putting a little bit of a vintage spin on things like having ballet class in an old ice cream parlor. (far-fetched, I KNOW but just roll with me okay?)  I figure this MAY be the last party that she lets me "help" her with so she said PINK and said YESSS!  We've come up with some fun ideas and I can't wait to bring them to life. The collage above is the little inspiration board I came up with.   If you'd like to check out some other birthdays we've had around here, click on these 

                                                                                  vintage paper cone favors
                                                                                    Peyton's eigth birthday
                                                                giant oreo cookie cake
                                                             cotton candy surprise party
                                                              Peyton's dance diva party
                                                                      tea cup party

photo credits:,,

Tuesday, January 18, 2011



Don't forget to go HERE for the give away.  Not many people have entered so your odds are good!!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Shop At Dreamy Whites & not your grandmothers lace AND A GIVEAWAY

photo from the fabulous Maria at

This past September, I was fortunate enough to be able to sample some of the goodies that my friend Maria from Dreamy Whites was going to have in her FABULOUS French inspired shop.  Well it's a few months later and sweet Maria has figuratively swung open her doors and put out the OPEN sign!  Check out her fabulous store HERE  If you want to read about my little sampling of the goods, go HERE
 Usually when I think of lace I visualize 2 things.  The Jessica McClintock washed lavender colored blouse with the LARGE lace collar that my friend had in 6 grade.  I wanted that blouse SO BAD., not so much.  Or I picture the hand made lace doilies that every ones grandmother seemed to have blanketing their tables.  Judging by all the lace showing up in the design world on pillows and rugs and even room dividers, I don't think lace is just for fabric anymore!

lace wallpaper from anthropologie

rug from anthropologie
magazine holder lonny magazine

concrete room divider
Nothing puts a smile on my face like a LOVELY LITTLE GIVE AWAY!!!!

It's been cold and windy here enough lately to put this happy chick a little bit into the dumps.  Trying to pull myself out of the funk (cleaning my closet WAS NOT WORKING) and put a smile on someone else's face is always fun.  So I thought, "self, why don't you have a give away?"  knowing that self often has some good ideas so I'm taking her advice. IT'S GIVE AWAY TIME!!!  You have a couple ways to win.  Post a comment for one chance.  Post something you like to do when you are in a funk (I often bake, sugar usually makes me happy!).  And if you want to be extra lucky and really want an extra chance, if you post the give away on your blog and post here and tell me, you'll get 2 more chances!'s the prize...

A Scentsy plugin of your choice and one bar of the scent of the month!  The scent of the month is called, MY WISH it's a delightful blend of earthy fig, violets and delicious marshmallow. It's YUMMY! are going to love it!
My Scentsy site is here if you want to check out which plug in warmer you'd like

Contest ends January 20th

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Happy, Bright Colors

My youngest, Peyton, loves bright colors.  The brighter the better!  Santa brought her these COOL headbands that are made by recycling candy wrappers!  I think they are so cute, Santa must know her well.  Candy and bright colors make a happy little girl.  Check out the sweet store on Etsy that Santa got them from, it's called Presents from Alex .  She also got these UBER-SOFT cloud socks from Little Miss Matched.  If you haven't heard of them before, you should check them out too.  Their socks are great for those people who never can seem to find 2 matching socks because their socks never MATCH!  You get 3 coordinating socks instead of 2 matched socks! GREAT concept! Sooo pretty too.  That fun hair band ball is from American Eagle...LOVE that store~!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

New Years Resolutions

My Kitchen

The Container Store
What is it about New Years that makes you want to CLEAN, ORGANIZE AND PURGE?  We flock to Target and Walmart's container section like geese on a migration path.  The dollar section of my local target is currently filled with beconing bright buckets and fluffy microfiber dust mitts.  Putting away the Christmas tree must trigger the inner cleaning lady in all of us!  I think getting organized is tied for loosing weight as the top resolutions.  I know they are MINE!  I wish I could drop pounds as easily as I drop off stuff at Goodwill...hmmm.  What have you been working on?

I think the past 5-6 weeks is the longest break from blogging I've ever taken.  Initially I couldn't blog because our computer decided to take an irreversible crash.  Then we bought a new lap top that would start all over every couple days as though it was brand new or it would lock up. WEIRD!  We finally bit the bullet the week of Christmas (GREAT timing) and got a new desktop with a huge screen. YAY!  So, I'm back BABY! :-)

In SCENTSY news:  We've been having so much fun with our little SCENTSY VENTURE .  The month of January is a wonderful month to have a basket party because it is DOUBLE HALF PRICE month.  Meaning, that we double how ever many half price items your party earns.  It's also "bring back my bar" month with 20 special edition scents that are only available in January.  That's a total of 101 different wonderful scents!  BTW, a basket party is fun because we could be across the country from each other and you could still have a Scentsy party.  This is how it works, I send you everything (80 sample scents, catalogs, orderforms, a sample bar and a calculator) in a pretty little "got scents?" market basket.  You can have friends over or you can take the basket to work or your kids sports events.  You share Scentsy and earn free and half price items almost effortlessly!

So many things to say that I'm a bit overwhelmed.  I'll never catch up but at least this is a start.  Now to try

The Container Store
to catch up with everyone else's  blogs...