Monday, January 25, 2010

P.S. I think I hate sundance.

Jumping on the Vinyl Bandwagon

Okay I know I am totally late for this bandwagon... like 5 years or so. Truthfully? I have not always loved the vinyl craze, I am sorry but I did not feel like scrolling "dance and live and love and what not" on my wall - it really did not feel like it fit my family or me... now if somebody made quotes from say Willy Wonka I might be a customer then.... Any who, there is a whole world of wonderfulness out there and I am starting to get hooked. Mostly for the finished feel that I think they bring to a room. Since every room in my house feels like 3/4 finished (because they are only 3/4 finished!) I wanted to add a little something. So I went small and added this antique scroll thing to my room above the mirror, and I think I like it.
This one is what I have my eye on next - in black for the same said olive green bedroom above. I have a large wall above the bed just sitting empty, and I think something large and graphic is just what is called for. Most of these (with the exception of the dandelion) vinyl graphics are from a fellow etsy artist Byrdie Graphics who I think is wonderful and I can't wait to add this to my room!

I think this one is too too cute!

I have always had a love of tress and the different shapes they take. I even had an art teacher tell me to please stop representing trees in all my work, so this one is a no brainer, love the mood it creates for this room.

This one is just plain fun, and different would be really cool in a little boys room.

This image of the blowing dandelion is pretty popular, but I love it.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Cookie Decorating Party

This is a tradition, I am trying to uphold every year, that started with my best friend (Kelly) when we were about this age. She had a Christmas cookie decorating party every year, up until we graduated high school, and it always helped me feel more in the spirit of the holidays, and that is a tradition that I want to pass on to my daughter and her friends. Since her birthday is the beginning of February, and I don't want to get burned out on party planning, I keep it really simple and low stress. I plan it for after lunch so I don't have to worry about feeding anyone, and serve only snacks like grapes and goldfish and pretzels and hot chocolate, and of course cookies!

Of course a cookie party has to start with matching Santa Aprons! These are the girls take home treat (along with their decorated cookies). Of course I want them all to be matchy for cuteness and pictures, so I am a little bit more over the top then I need to be.

I used pre made cookie batter (from the school fundraiser) which was really easy, but I thought it did not taste as good as when I make it from scratch. Cadence does not like sugar cookies, so she really did not care about going for the most elaborate or beautiful cookie, instead she went for the biggest, dubbing this one the Santa Cookie.

That set all the girls off on making giant creations. Here cousin Molly is pretending to take a bite from her Santa Cookie.

We play easy print of games like Santa Bingo, here they are doing blind folded snowmen drawings. I blindfolded all the girls and didn't tell them what they were drawing, just described it (like draw one big circle, on top of that draw a smaller circle) this set the girls off on endless rounds of giggling.

This game was a candy cane pass, where the girls had to pass a candy cane in every finger off to the next person in the obstacle - more giggling ensued.

We also made this cute cute craft of snowmen. I am totally in love with this craft. The bodies are upside down terracotta pots (2" ones) and the heads are 2" styrofoam balls. Before the party I painted them with a fake snow texture. I let the girls paint the bodies first thing, so they would dry, then I hot glued on the heads and stuck pipe cleaners in the top (before gluing). Then I let the girls decorate them however they wanted too. I had ribbon for scarves and buttons, beads
and sequins for eyes and mouths, and then I had a wide variety of miniature pine cones and berries for add-ons in the hands.

I was really impressed with how creative the girls got with their snowmen, one girl gave hers a Mohawk, another girl fashioned some little earmuffs. Cadence painted on a big sloppy red mouth on hers and then put a fake peppermint candy in her hands right up to her mouth, explaining that her snowwoman has candy all over her face. Very cute! Definitely an idea I want to hold on to, and oh yea the turquoise one is mine, I had just as much fun as they did!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Homemade Cupcakes (from scratch!)

This is the cutest little cupcake stand ever that my dear husband bought for me for Christmas, even though I already had one, but isn't it adorable? I love it! Knowing my bug for cupcakes lately my sister in Law asked me to bring cupcakes to Annie's (other sister in law) baby shower. yes she is having a boy and will be named Gabriel.
I tried to get a shot of these cute polka dot cupcake liners that I got from the Bake it Pretty website. Also I made these cupcakes from scratch, only the second time I have done this, the prognosis is that I did not overly love the cupcakes themselves, they were tasting, but a little dry for my taste, in the future I would change up the recipe, but the frosting..... I am over the moon in love with this chocolate frosting recipe. I will share it with you, and yes it is one of Martha's. - How can you go wrong with something that has butter, cream cheese and sour cream? And for those of you that are skeptics, the sour cream gives it the right amount of tanginess to counter act all that chocolate.


  • 4 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 18 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups sour cream


  1. Sift sugar, cocoa powder, and salt into a large bowl. Put cream cheese and butter into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Gradually add sugar mixture; mix until combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Mix in chocolate and sour cream. Use immediately.