Blog Widget by LinkWithin

iNSPiRE | Aedriel Originals

Thursday, November 29

defined as a day to...
share something...ANYTHING...
that makes my mouth water...
quenches my creative tastebuds...
satisfies my thirst for inspiration...
or leaves me "creatively parched"
and ultimately wanting for more...

Dear Santa...
I've been a pretty good girl this year.
So I was thinking...
You know how much I'm in the kitchen?
The place I never seem to leave?
And you know how much I LOVE baking...
typically treats for my family and friends as long as I don't eat them myself.
And you know how I do my best to make dinner for my family every night?
as long as it doesn't cut in to any precious baking time & if I don't order pizza because I'm too tired to cook.
Well I would be SUCH a happy girl if you'd kindly
bring me one of each of the following...pretty please.

I pinky promise your Christmas cookies will never be store-bought again...

and Santa...
I'm seriously in love with all of the hand-painted gorgeousness from  Aedriel Originals!
Like these...
(in a variety of different colors)

shown with the Uber Cute Cupcake Pedestal

Farm Table Kitchen Porcelain Tags
personalize with a Sharpie Marker for every celebration

Can you see why my sleigh bells are ringing?

although this letter screams may seem to be all about "Me! Me! Me!"...
I'm actually writing to share with you something I'm completely excited about...
the beautiful tradition I'm starting this year...

I'll be filling up one of these gorgeous Aedriel Originals plates with some homemade deliciousness...
and then I'm going to pick a special someone to give it to.
The idea is for the receiver to then refill the plate and pass it along!
Brilliant, selfless idea, right?

Thanks for listening Santa.
I know it's such a busy time of year for you...
so I appreciate you taking time to assure I receive these much-deserved gifts read my letter.
Our family is looking forward to your annual visit!!

Merry Christmas!!

P.S. Please tell Mrs. Claus I adore her and I'm still waiting on her Christmas cookie recipe.
Also, let Stuart know we can't wait to see him...
and give Rudolph a "fist/hoof pump" for me!

In all seriousness my friends...
I'm SOOO in love with these beautiful things.

It's not surprising Aedriel Originals has been featured in some fabulous places like
Martha Stewart Weddings,, Apartment Therapy, 100 Layer Cake and so many more!
Her most recent feature was in Southern Weddings Magazine.

I hope you've been inspired to add something from Aedriel Originals to your Chirstmas Wish List...
or perhaps you've found the perfect gift for me someone on your Holiday Gift-Giving List. *wink*

Not only does Aedriel create lovely hand painted items for your home...
she's also quite a lovely person on the inside too!
Remember me introducing her to you in this post?

I encourage you to connect with her...I promise you'll be inspired:
Aedriel's Blog
Aedriel's Shop
Aedriel on Pinterest
Aedriel on Twitter
Aedriel on Facebook

My mom wants one of the plates to start the "Give - pass it on" plate tradition in her workplace...
LOVE that idea!
I'm pretty sure she was trying to hint to me she wants to be my first "receiver" of the plate. *wink*
Love you Mom!!

SHARE | Favorite Christmas Party Ideas for Kids

Wednesday, November 28

Looking for creative things to do for a Classroom Holiday Party?
Or just looking to be inspired for the upcoming holidays?

Here are my favorite pins from the Pinterest Party I invited you to attend last night.
It was an hour of pure inspiration focused on "Christmas Party Ideas for Kids"!

Christmas Pancakes with Chocolate Peppermint Syrup 
for hosting a Santa's Breakfast Party

Adorable Clothespin Advent Calendar 
Use this idea for displaying party favors...and as a Christmas Card Holder too!

Cupcake Liner Christmas Trees

Milk Men

Adorable DIY Felt Ribbon Candy

Reindeer Noses Party Favors

Snowman Macarons on Red Velvet Christmas Snow Cake

Candy Cane Float

Adorable Gingerbread Man Packaging

Peppermint Cake Pops

DIY Candy Cane Cupcake Toppers
heat candy canes just enough to "shape" them as toppers

Thanks to everyone who participated with us!
I was so inspired by all of the ideas that were shared.
I hope you were too.
And congratulations to the FiVE winners who received $50 Gift Cards from Pottery Barn Kids!!
A very special thanks to Pottery Barn Kids for sponsoring the Pin Party last night!!

If you missed out...
You can still see the entire "Christmas Party Ideas for Kids" Board 
there's a Pinterest Party happening every Tuesday night...
through December 18th.
A different topic every week!

Here are the links to all of  the Holiday Entertaining Pinterest Parties that have taken place so far:

As if I didn't already have an entire list of cute things I want to make for the holidays...
my list just got even longer after the Pinterest Party last night.
Maybe I should number the projects and do a raffle type drawing to determine which ones should get done? Ha!

iNViTE | Christmas Party Ideas for Kids Pinterest Party

Tuesday, November 27

I'll be participating again as a Guest Host...
in the 3rd round of Holiday Entertaining Pinterest Parties TONiGHT! (11.27)
and YOU are invited!!

With Pottery Barn Kids giving away FiVE $50 Gift Cards tonight...
you won't want to miss being there!

Tonight's theme?

Christmas Party Ideas for Kids

Here's the scoop on how to participate:

When: 9:00 p.m. EST/6p.m. PST
Tonight's Inspiration:  Christmas Party Ideas for Kids
Why? Be inspired for the upcoming Holidays through the pins we'll be sharing
            and be one of 5 winners to receive a $50 Pottery Barn Kids Gift Card.
What do I do? Just log on to Pinterest at the designated time. (9:00 p.m. EST/6p.m. PST)
                           "Follow" the Christmas Party Ideas for Kids
How do I win one of the $50 Pottery Barn Kids Gift Cards? 
To be entered into the contest, leave a comment on any of the images/ideas we share tonight
and using the hashtag: #holidayentertaining

NOTE: You will not be pinning ideas to the board. 
You'll merely be sitting back...
in your comfy pajamas and slippers if you like...
sipping your hot cocoa...
and refreshing your screen to watch the ongoing inspiration that will be pinned to the board...
by the participating co-hosts, (such as myself) and the other fabulous ladies mentioned above.
All you need to do is BE iNSPiRED!
Re-pin the pins you love from the Christmas Party Ideas for Kids Pinterest Board...
and be sure to leave comments on any of our pins to be entered to win one of the Pottery Barn Kids gift cards!
That's it!

Here's a sneak peek at one of the images I'll be pinning tonight...

I hope to see you at the party tonight!!

CRAFT | Mini Tassels

Like I said yesterday...
I've been a busy little bee creating homemade decorative accents.
I'm not sure where my obsession for incorporating tassels into my holiday decor this year stems from?
And instead of trying to analyze the reason...
like I would typically do...
and present you with some profound answer...
like I would hope I could do...
I'm skipping all of that and just getting right to the basics of it all...
How to make them!
They are a cinch to create...
They're so completely versatile...
And for me...
they are as darling as it gets!

Mini Tassels

STEP ONE - Build your tassel Skirt
Wrap a sturdy object with your choice of yarn, string, ribbon or a combination of all three.
A piece of cardboard works perfectly fine. I just happened to be working on a different project
with the wooden tags and decided to use those.

I wrapped my string around the tag 40 times.
The average wrap-around for making tassels is between 20-40
This is completely dependent on material used and your preference for "poofy-ness". 
Don't fret over uneven strings - those will be trimmed at the end of this process.

TIP: Don't wrap too tightly! 
You'll need to be able to slide the bundle of string off of your sturdy object'll also need to slip a separate piece of string underneath your bundle. See STEP TWO.

STEP TWO - Create a string for hanging your tassel.
Cut a piece of string - you'd rather it be too long that too short since you can always trim it down. 
Fold string in half.
Slide folded string underneath the layers of wrapped string - as shown in Step 2.
If you wrapped your string too tightly you'll now be frustrated. *wink*

STEP THREE - Create a loop for hanging
Thread the cut ends of the string through the loop on the other end.

STEP FOUR - Remove and tug
With string for hanging created, remove your entire bundle of string from sturdy object.
Pull hanging cord tightly to ensure a tight knot around bundle.

STEP FIVE - Create the neck
Cut a piece of string long enough to tie a knot around the entire bundle (tassel skirt).
This string should be long enough so that after a knot is made the excess strings will allow for trimming to blend with the rest of the skirt.
Tie a tight knot just below the top portion of the soon-to-be tassel.

STEP SIX - Remove loops and trim
Slide scissors through the loops at the lower portion of the tassel skirt and cut.
Continue to cut until all loops have been trimmed and you are left with strings only.
Trim the skirt for a finished edge. (as shown in Photo 1)

OPTIONAL - Reinforced neck
I like to wrap the neck portion of the tassel several more times for a more finished look.
It's an extra step though, and not necessary.

Increase the size of your tassels by using a larger sturdy object for wrapping.
• Try a variety of strings, yarn or ribbon for different tassel looks.
Combining different string types into one tassel adds a little more depth and interest.
    - Wrap Yarn 10 times and trim.
    - Wrap Ribbon 10 times and trim.
    - Wrap string 10 times and trim.
    - Finish with Yarn - wrapping 10 times and trim.

• Create banners or garlands
• Hang on door knobs
• Add to lamps/light fixtures
• Accent gift packaging

What other creative ways would you incorporate tassels into your home decor?
I'd love to hear your ideas!

Hugs to you everybody!!

If things go well this week...
I'm attempting to post 12 Days of Homemade Holiday Gift Ideas to share with you...
starting on Saturday, December 1st and running through the 12th!
Fingers crossed I can pull this off!

Don't forget to get join me tonight for some Holiday Inspiration on Pinterest!
The party starts at 9:00 p.m.

STYLiNG | Changing things up...

Monday, November 26

Thanksgiving has officially come and gone.
As much as I thoroughly enjoyed spending the holiday with family...
feasting on good food...
and savoring our time together...

I'm officially ready for the Christmas holidays!
I'm not sure why, but I'm genuinely ready to soak in all of the craziness this holiday season brings.
Tree decorating...
Simmering Holiday Potpourri...
Cookie Baking...
Gift Wrapping...
Attending Parades...
Christmas movies...
Fires in the fireplace...(yes, even here in Florida).
and Carols playing in the background the entire time!

After years and years of the same Christmas tree decor...
I'm finally "branching" out and changing it up this year.
I decided on a completely non-traditional color scheme...
and I've been a busy little bee creating some homemade decorations.

I'll be sharing the DIY's for the homemade tassels and pom poms I've been making.
They are so adorable and super fun (and easy) to make!

Not only would I  love to know what you are doing to get yourself in the Holiday Spirit...
but I'd love to know what your Holiday color scheme is!

NOT in the Holiday Spirit at all?
Here are a few simple things you can do to inch your way closer...


Join me HERE tomorrow night for our Christmas Parties for Kids Pinterest Party!
We'll be sharing LOTS of holiday ideas for you to be inspired by. 
Participation will automatically enter you to win a FABULOUS prize!!

Here are the fabulous bloggers who'll be feeding your holiday inspiration:

I hope these suggestions help!
Here's to a great week ahead, friends!!

The one thing I'm not really looking forward to is family photos.
Not sure why.
Probably because I don't really have a game plan yet.
And I haven't decided on our holiday cards either.
Maybe I should start with the holiday cards...
and THEN determine what to do for the photos. *wink*

TREAT | 50% Off Cyber Monday Sale

Take advantage of 50% savings on all printables in the shoppe today!
Not having a party any time soon?
No big deal.
Purchase printables now and save your order until you are ready for your party!!
Use the code: CYBER50

Offer expires at midnight tonight! November 26th.
Have fun shopping!!

iNViTE | Merry Metallics Pinterest Party

Tuesday, November 20

There's a party happening tonight!!
Kim from The TomKat Studio and Kelly from The Party Dress
are hosting a Pinterest Party, sponsored by and YOU are invited!!

I'll be participating as a co-host, along with some other fabulous gals (see list above)
for ONE hour of pure holiday inspiration!

I hope you'll join us!!

When: 9:00 p.m. EST/6p.m. PST
Tonight's Inspiration:  Merry Metallics Holiday Decor and Party Ideas Inspiration
Why? Be inspired for the upcoming Holidays through the pins we'll be sharing
            and WiN a $100 Gift Card to
What do I do? Just log on to Pinterest at the designated time.
                           "Follow" the Merry Metallics Holiday Entertaining Board
How do I win the $100 Minted Gift Card? To be entered into the drawing, comment on and repin any of 
                                                                              the images/ideas we share tonight using the hashtag: #holidayentertaining
Here's a sneak peek at one of the images I'll be pinning tonight...

DIY Metallic Holiday Garland

There will be so many more pretty things to be inspired by!
I hope to see you there!!

This really is a fun way to spend an hour - just us girls.
I totally felt like I was sitting there with my girlfriends - inspiring each other.

I've been finding so much inspiration in preparation for this party tonight.
I'm so excited to share my finds with you.
I wish we could all REALLY sit with one another...
sipping hot cocoa and eating cupcakes together! (with metallic sprinkles on top - of course). *wink*

iNSPiRE | TomKat Studio Holiday Gift Guide

Monday, November 19

It's Thanksgiving week, friends!
With celebrations ahead of us and Holiday Shopping nipping at our heels...
I can't think of a better way to kick the week off than by sharing with you...
something fabulous...
something to inspire your holiday gift giving...
and something that I contributed a few things to...

really love how both of the items I contributed turned out.
I hope you do too! *wink*

If you couldn't guess...
my holiday color scheme this year is chocolate brown and ivory.
It's completely non-traditional but I really, really love the way it feels.
It's soft...
and feels like "home".

Pen N' Paperflowers Holiday Gift Tags

Pecan Praline Dessert Drizzle Recipe/Gift Idea

I hope you'll go check out the full issue of The TomKat Studio Holiday Gift Guide!
There are some other fun recipes included...
wonderful gift ideas for the holidays...
along with a selection of even more FREE Holiday Gift Tags!

Browse the pages...
Be inspired!!

Here's to a great week of celebrating ahead.

What happened?
How can it be Thanksgiving already?
Even though I've been engaged in a variety of projects related to Fall/Thanksgiving...
it still snuck up on me this year.
I cannot believe it's this week!?
I'm looking forward to baking pies with my aunt on Wednesday...
and then spending more quality time with family on Thursday.

FAMiLY | Ella's 4th Birthday

It was Ella's 4th birthday on Wednesday. (November 14th!!) *sigh*
Because of scheduling conflicts...
we just kept things SUPER simple. *gasp*
Trust me.
I fretted over not having a party for her.
The theme was picked.
The invitations were done.
The planning had been underway for several months.
I was fighting a losing battle though.
Life is much busier when you have two teens and a toddler. 
(That could totally be the name of a t.v show) *wink*

We still made her feel special...
surprised her with balloons and breakfast in bed...

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw this photo last week...

She got to choose her birthday dinner: Spaghetti
and birthday dessert: Strawberry Cupcakes
And we had dinner, cake and presents with Grandma & Grandpa A.

Here's a 1 minute video I made using Ptch to capture the evening...
I would embed the video but Ptch doesn't have that option yet. *frown*

By the way...
Don't judge...
Ella's hair was looking a bit crazy...
And I'm no professional Ptch videographer.
But it's definitely "keeping it real" for you.

Honestly, as I type the words...
I still can't believe I didn't have the party I'd been planning.
I may need therapy to help deal with this loss...
It truly feels like a loss...
a missed opportunity. *heavy sigh*

EMPOWER | How To String A Banner

Tuesday, November 13

Stringing a banner is simple enough, right?
What if I told you there's a little secret I use for making the process super quick?

The secret?
A large eye needle.
Using the Cookie Exchange Banner shown in the Packaging Station I shared here yesterday...
here's the step-by-step - using photos...
How to Quickly String a Banner

If you haven't tried this little trick yet...
you won't believe how much time you'll save!!

Using a small hole punch, create holes in the upper corner of each banner panel.
String your large eye needle with the string, ribbon or yarn you'll be using.
Start stringing by going "down" the first hole and coming "up" through the second hole.
This keeps the string, ribbon or yarn to the back of each banner panel instead of having it run across the front.
Continue until all banner panels have been strung together.
Trim your string - leaving plenty of extra on both ends of the banner for hanging.

• Small hole punch - Fiskars
• Large Eye Needle - JoAnn Fabric & Crafts
  - this Plastic Kid's Needle works too!
• Cookie Exchange Banner - Pen N' Paperflowers

The other option is to use mini clothespins and skip the stringing process altogether! *wink*
I recommend stringing your banner if it's going to be exposed to the elements for an outside celebration...
- you never know when the wind will pick up!

I hope you'll use this technique the next time you've got a banner to put together.
Sometimes it's the littlest things that make the biggest difference.
Am I right?

If you've got small children...
I'd invest in a pack of the Plastic Kid's Needles for future craft projects.

STYLiNG | Cookie Exchange or Bake Sale Packaging Station

Monday, November 12

As promised...
here are the full details from the Cookie Exchange I styled for The Party Dress Magazine - Holiday 2012.

If you've considered hosting a Holiday Cookie Exchange...
but never followed through...
I'm hoping the one I'm about to share with you...
will give you the extra push you need to gather your friends/family together for some Holiday fun.

I set out to create something that would encourage spending quality time with the people you love 
in addition to providing each guest the opportunity to be productive by providing them
with the tools needed to creatively package up homemade treats for holiday gift-giving.

Guests arrive with their pre-baked homemade cookies and corresponding recipe; 
You provide the essentials for creatively packaging up the cookies.

This collection goes beyond the Holidays as well...
I designed it to be versatile enough to be used for a Bake Sale too. (think church/school fundraiser)

Celebration Type: Holiday Cookie Exchange (or Bake Sale)
Color Palette: Red, Pinks, Blue, Green & Yellow
Party Style: Modern • Whimsical

Using the fun, coordinating party supplies from The TomKat Studio made it super easy to put all of this together.
The oversized paper flowers, striped cookie boxes, pink and blue polka dot party cups and the striped cupcake liners/baking cups...
were my inspiration for creating the entire printable collection that helped pull everything together.

I hope I've inspired you to host your own cookie exchange this holiday season.
I realize it's an incredibly busy time for all of us...
which is all the more reason to take some time to connect with those we love.

TIPS for hosting a successful Cookie Exchange:
• Have each guest bring 1 dozen cookies for each person in attendance.
• Have serving vessels and cake plates ready for guests to easily add their cookies upon arrival.
• Encourage guests to bring the recipe for the cookie they are bringing.
Sturdy cookies are best for swapping and packaging
• Ask each guest to bring a spool or two of coordinating ribbon and a package of tape.

Make the Cookie Exchange (or Bake Sale) a contest.
Number the cookies as they arrive and keep the identity of the baker a secret. After the cookies are put on display, allow guests to sample each cookie and vote on their favorite. Reveal the baker associated with each cookie after voting has finished and the winner has been announced. Proceed with packaging up the cookies for gift-giving.

Present the winner with a gorgeous "Give" plate by Aedriel Originals - a beautiful gift that encourages filling the plate with treats/goodies, giving it as a gift and then having the receiver continue the cycle of giving.

The printable Cookie Exchange/Bake Sale printables are now available for purchase in my shoppe.
My sweet blog readers and fans will enjoy a 50% discount using this code during checkout: BAKESALE50

• "Cookie Exchange" Banner
• "Bake Sale" Banner
• Gift Tags for Packaging
• Packaging Station Supply Labels
  - Ribbon
  - Tags
  - Bags
  - Pretty Paper Cups
  - Tape
  - Scissors
  - Plates
  - Pen & Markers
  - Boxes
  - Blanks
• Blank Cookie Labels (use a White Sharpie Paint Marker to fill in name)
• Fill-In Invitations
• Envelope Wraps
• Recipe Cards
• 2 Sheets of 8.5x11 Designer Paper (1- Stripe 1-Polka Dot)

• Cookie Exchange Printables - Pen N' Paperflowers
• Striped Cookie Boxes - TomKat Studio Shop
• Oversized Paper Flowers/Snowflakes - TomKat Studio Shop
• Striped Cupcake Liners (mini and regular) - TomKat Studio Shop
• Polka Dot Party Cups - TomKat Studio Shop
• "Give...pass it on" Plate - Aedriel Originals
• Little French Farmhouse Sprinkles - TomKat Studio Shop
• Colorful Serving Spatulas - Homegoods

it's so beautiful... 
it's going to be hard to giveaway. *wink*
But my Mom always told me it's the gifts you want to keep for yourself that make the best gifts.
Don't you agree?
CopyRight © | Theme Designed By Hello Manhattan