Friday, April 29, 2011

{Fab Finds} Mother's Day

Photo Credits: Flowers from Telaflora, Apron from Anthropologie, Keurig Coffee Maker from Macy's, Parent Nestling Necklaces from Uncommon Goods, and Terrazzo Jeanette Bag fromKate Spade.

Hey everybody!  Mother's Day is coming up, so I thought I would dedicate this week's Fab Finds to gifts fit for our wonderful moms.  

The first item is obvious, but still relevant.  Every girl likes to get flowers.  I usually order my mom flowers from Teleflora.  One time I didn't, and they weren't nearly as nice.  The center item is a beautiful apron from Anthropologie.  It's both pretty and practical.  Next is the Keurig Coffee Maker.  I have one, and I absolutely love it.  You can make just one cup, and if your mom isn't a coffee drinker, there are plenty of other options.  The hot chocolate is one of my personal favorites.  I absolutely loved these nestling bird necklaces.  It's a modern take on the mother necklace, and birds are really in right now.  The final gift idea is for those have little extra dough to spend on mom this year.  It's the Terrazzo Jeanette bag from Kate Spade.  I absolutely love the color combination and the pattern.  It's the perfect summer bag.  

Well that's it for this week's Fab Finds.  I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!     

Thursday, April 28, 2011

{Random Things} Royal Wedding Viewing Party

Photo Credits: Lydia Leith
Okay, I must admit, that all of this hype over Prince William and Kate's Royal Wedding made me want to order one of the sick bags above.  Then I saw various blogs about people getting ready for their Royal Wedding Viewing Parties, and it made me slightly jealous that I wasn't having one (I likes me a good party).  A million ideas and an Evite later, and I too am having a viewing party.  The menu will be full of British foods, such as meat pies, shortbread, tea, and a few other things I found.  I'm also going to try making one of those rainbow cakes I keep seeing everywhere, although it will most likely only be two colors.  

I can't wait for this cheesy celebrations with all my best girl friends.  It's also my good friend Lena's birthday, so we will be celebrating that as well.        

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

{My Life} Easter Recap and Things to Come

Hey everybody!  Can you guys believe April is almost over?  I know I can’t.  
I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend.  I know we did.  My family showed up on Thursday night.  Then Jason’s family came on Friday evening, and we had a bbq that night.  Saturday, we got to see the Twins beat the Indians at Target Field, and then Sunday we, of course, celebrated Easter.  In addition to our family, we also had some friends over on Sunday.  It was a weekend filled with games, as we spent most of it in the basement playing pool, shuffleboard and Big Buck Hunter.  It was a very successful first holiday in our new house.  It was also the first time we brought both sides (Jason’s and mine) together, and that part went great too!  All and all, I couldn’t have asked for a better weekend.  
Now that Easter’s over it’s time to focus on getting our townhouse cleaned out.  We have a contractor in there, and we need to get all the stuff left in there out of his way.  I’m very excited to see some progress in there.  I think it’s going to look amazing.  For those of you who don’t know the situation, we held on to our townhouse after we bought our new house.  We had been planning to rent it out at the beginning of March until a pipe leak destroyed our kitchen and bathroom.  Thankfully we have good insurance, and they covered it all.  In addition to having the kitchen and bathroom redone we are also updating carpet, light fixtures, and other misc stuff, so when we rent it out it’s going to look like a whole new townhouse.  It’s been really fun to pick everything out and work with a blank pallet.  I will definitely post pictures as things progress.  
Well that’s it for now.  I hope you all have a wonderful week!  

Sunday, April 24, 2011

{Random Things} Happy Easter!

Hey everybody!  I just wanted to pop on for a quick minute to wish everyone a Happy Easter!  We will be celebrating today with family and friends.  It's our first holiday in our new house, and I've been very excited to get to use my dining room for the first time.  The picture above is a sneak peak of our centerpiece.  I'm sure I'll be posting a lot more pics within the next few days.  

I hope you all have a wonderful day, and Happy Easter again!

May Day Copper Owl Giveaway: One Week Left to Enter

Hey everybody!  If you haven't entered the giveaway yet, you only have 1 more week to enter.  I will announce the winner on May 1st.  Please go back the the original post (here) to enter.

Good luck!

Friday, April 22, 2011

{Fab Finds} Summer Sailor

Photo Credits: (clockwise) Bayan Hippo, Deep Indigo, Classic Keepsakes, Beauty and Spa, and French Felt.

Our grass is green and our plants are starting to poke through.  I have summer on the brain, and with summer comes thoughts of being on the lake.  Here are a few fun Etsy finds to get you excited for summer.  

The Sailor Tote Bag is from a fun little shop called the Bayan Hippo.  She has lots of other fun bags too.  I can just picture throwing my towel and some snacks in here, and heading to the lake.  The next find are some adorable Nautical Hair Pins from Deep Indigo.  They are so cute!  The Octopus Necklace was one of my favorite finds, which is from Classic Keepsakes.  I love how the brass and the blue stone complement each other.  I'm also really excited about the Organic Beach Towel from Beauty and Spa.  It's oversized and looks super soft.  I will definitely be ordering one of these.  Last, but not least, is the Navy Blue Nautical Scarf from French Felt.   I was digging around a little on their shop.  Not only do they have some really cute scarves, but they also have some other great accessories.

Well that's it for this week's Fab Finds.  Have a great Easter weekend!    


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

{My Life} A Little Upside Down At The Moment

Photo Credits: MN Poker Magazine
This last week has been a little chaotic to say the least.   Last Friday the DOJ shut down the 3 major online poker sites, and began arresting some of their executives.  I don't particularly want to get into too many details (details are here if you are interested) because it's seriously pretty much been all we've talked about since it happened.  I'm having a particularly hard time dealing with all the "haters."  Like the people who say "What did you expect, online poker is illegal," and the people who treat poker players like they are all a bunch of dead beats who didn't want to get a "real job."  First of all online poker is NOT illegal.  These sites did get shut down because of illegal activity, but it had nothing to do with the players themselves.  Second, and I believe this to be the case with many professional poker players, my husband is one of the hardest working people I know.  He took the "normal" path in life.  He graduated top of his class in both high school and college.  After college, he became an Electrical Engineer, where he also excelled.  After seeing that he could make substantially more money as a Professional Poker Player, he decided that he would make the switch, but didn't do so until he had saved up 6 months of backup living expenses.  Now, he works harder than he ever did at his "real job."  We don't know exactly what's going to happen next, but my husband still plans to play poker for a living. 

Onto a happier subject, also regarding my wonderful husband, on Sunday he took 2nd place at the Minnesota State Poker Championship.  As usual, I am so proud of him.    

This weekend we are going to have Jason's and my family in town for Easter.  This our first Easter in the new house, and I'm very excited to use my dining room for the first time.  I'm also a little excited because I'm going to try to make those adorable Pies in a Jar that I keep seeing everywhere.  They are so cute!  

Well that's it for now.  I hope you all have a wonderful Easter!    

Sunday, April 17, 2011

{Scrumptious} Carrot Cake Oatmeal Cookies

I made these cookies for the first time a few weeks ago, from a recipe I altered quite a bit to suite my own taste.  Then this weekend I mixed it up a little bit, and made little whoopie pies out of them.  I made the cookies half the size, and then put my cream cheese frosting in the middle.  You can find the recipe for the frosting here.    

I hope you all enjoy!  

Carrot Cake Oatmeal Cookies

- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 6 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups quick oatmeal (not instant)
- 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
- 1 cup finely chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, and set the mixture aside.  

In a different bowl beat the butter and both sugars until the mixture is creamy.  Then mix in the eggs and the vanilla.  By hand, mix in the flour mixture until well combined.  Then one by one stir in the oatmeal, carrots, and the walnuts.  (I actually used my KitchenAid mixer for this whole part, using the flat beater.  On the "hand" mixing part, I just turned the speed to the slowest one.  If you don't have a stand mixer, definitely do it by hand.) 

Line cookie sheets with parchment paper, and roll balls that equal about 1/4 of a cup.  I use an ice cream scoop to do this part.  Do not over crowd the cookies.  You should only be able to put about 6 cookies on each cookie sheet (8 for a pretty large cookie sheet).  

Bake for 17-18 minutes on the center rack of the oven, one sheet at a time.  This batch should make about 24 cookies.  

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Copper Owl Giveaway Comments

Hey everybody!  I heard from a few people that they were having problems commenting on the May Day Copper Owl Giveaway post to win a free necklace.  I changed things around a little bit, so now anyone can comment without signing up for a blogger account.  Please make sure you put your full name (under name/url), so that I know who you are.

Click here to go to the original post to enter.  Good luck everyone!  

Friday, April 15, 2011

{Fab Find} Lauren Blythe Designs on Etsy

Photo Credits: Lauren Blythe Designs
Happy Friday everybody!  Today's fab find is from the Etsy store Lauren Blythe Designs.  I love how she uses a mixture of vintage and new pieces to create this stunning jewelry.  If you buy something by April 19th, and use the coupon code MOTHER15, you can get 15% off of your purchase.

I hope you all have a great weekend!    

Monday, April 11, 2011

May Day Copper Owl Giveaway!

Hey everybody!  I've been wanting to do a giveaway for a while, so I thought I may as well start with something from The Copper Owl.  

It's very simple to enter, all you have to do is comment on this post by April 30th, 2011 at 11:59pm.  I will announce the winner of the fabulous necklace above the next day.  

Good luck! 

{My Life} Studio Remodel

Hey everybody!  I mentioned a few weeks ago that I wanted to remodel my studio.  I wanted a place that was not only functional but also beautiful.  I got started last week.  So far I have added some doors to my bookcases, put up curtains, and did some organizing/accessorizing.  I still have some things I want to do.  I want to find a cute little table to put in front of the window.  I also just ordered a big linen pin board from Pottery Barn that I'm going to hang it behind my desk instead of the pictures that are there.  I can't wait to assemble my first "mood board" on it.  I really wanted to paint too, but I think I'm going to hold off on that for now.

Here are some of the close up details.  

Clockwise: I found thins little vintage looking mini suitcase at Pottery Barn that I'm using to store paper clips, push pins, and my japanese tapes.  I got the apothecary jar at Target that I'm using to store my blue and green ribbon.  The vintage twine holder is from Bachman's.  In the next photo I got jars in the kitchen section at Target to organize my ribbons by color.  Below that I found the vintage camera at Bachman's, which I'm using to decorate the shelf my little notebooks and journals are on.  Below that is a picture of my adorable dog Doggert, which sits on my desk.  To the left of that is a bunch of stuff I put together because I didn't know where else to put it, and it all looked so cute together.  A vintage teacup, a pin holder mannequin, a Blue Kitty Mustachio by Amy Jo's Handmade, and other misc stuff.  Then above that is a chicken wire basket that I found at Nadeau (which I blogged about here) that worked perfect to house some old drafting projects I had done.  

So far I'm really liking all the changes.  I didn't really feel like working in there before, and now I prefer it.  I can't wait to get it all finished up.    

Well that's it for now.  Have a great week everyone!    

Friday, April 8, 2011

{Soirees} Graduation Party (Part 1)

Photo Crdits:,, Creative Productions, and Amy Atlas Events.

Hey everybody!  The baby shower I was working on has been postponed because the mommy had her little guy early, so you'll all have to wait a little longer to see how it all turns out.  There is another upcoming soiree on my mind though, my wonderful little sister's (of Sapphire Chic) high school graduation in May.  I get to help with the decor, so I've been busy coming up with some possibilities.  The pictures above are my inspiration so far, all of which will be altered to fit her high school colors (red, black, and white).  I'll keep you all posted during the rest of the planning process.  

I hope you all enjoy the rest of the weekend!          

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

{Scrumptious} Ciao Bella

Hey everybody!  As promised, I'm using today's Tasty Tuesday to bring you a restaurant recommendation.  I want to start by saying I am in no way, shape, or form a food critic.  When I give you a recommendation, keep in mind, I'm no expert.  

We went to Ciao Bella in Bloomington (MN, for all you out of staters) for my birthday last week, and I personally thought it was fantastic.  We had our own private area, where my only complaint was that the lighting was way too low.  It was otherwise nice to have a little privacy, since we had a rather large group.  My husband and I had the Braised Meatballs for an appetizer and they were delicious.  They were veal sausage meatballs stuffed with mozzarella and covered in a very tasty bolognese sauce.  For my entree I had the Herb Grilled Salmon.  It was cooked perfectly and seasoned amazingly well.  The roasted fingerling potatoes were also cooked and seasoned very well.  My only complaint, keeping in mind that I fully plan to get this again, was that the carrots and artichokes were a little too crunchy.  Everyone else seemed to enjoy their food too.  A few notables were the Filet Mignon Sandwich, the Chicken Parmesan, and the Spaghetti with Meatballs.

This wasn't my first visit to Ciao Bella.  I honestly kind of forgot about it because it's in a kind of weird location.  I will definitely be going back again in the near future, probably the next time I'm craving salmon.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your evening!     

Monday, April 4, 2011

Layla Grayce Nursery Giveaway!

Hey Everybody!  I'm so excited to announce Layla Grayce's $5000 Dream Nursery Giveaway during the month of April! One lucky mom or mommy-to-be will win everything she needs to create a gorgeous, comfortable and stylish space for her little bundle of joy. The winner will receive an absolutely beautiful array products including her choice of any Newport Cottages crib and changing table, her choice of a DwellStudio crib bedding set, a colorful and fun Oopsy Daisy lamp, a beautiful Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bag, one"Giant" Blabla Kids doll and much, much more! Plus, Layla Grayce is throwing in a $500 gift certificate to help the lucky mommy accessorize her fabulous new nursery!

To enter to win your $5000 Dream Nursery, simply complete the online entry form before end of day on April 30th. Good luck!

{My Life} I'm 28!

Hey everybody!  I had a wonderful birthday thanks to my wonderful husband, family, and friends!  I got to sleep in and be lazy all day.  Then we went out to dinner and went bowling with friends.   It was lots of fun!

We met with a contractor this weekend at the townhouse, so that project will be moving forward soon.  We are hoping to have it all done by June 1st so that we can rent by June 15th (fingers crossed).  Aside from the kitchen and bathroom, we are going to have the carpet replaced upstairs and have all the little misc items that need fixing done.  Hopefully the entirely updated interior will allow us to charge more for rent.    

I'm starting an online web design class this that I'm pretty excited about.  As I said before, I'm thinking of starting my own event planning business, and I thought doing a little web design on the side might be a way to supplement my income in the beginning.  Plus, I think it would be a lot of fun.  All that being said, I would mostly just like to know more about how it all works.

Well that's it for now my friends.  I'll be back tomorrow for a restaurant review for my Tasty Tuesday column.  Have a great week everybody!  


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Oh, no!

Hey everybody!  You may notice that my buttons/navigation bar are missing.  I had an unfortunate accident, and deleted the code for them.  I contacted my blog designer, and I'm hoping to them up again soon.

Friday, April 1, 2011

{Fab Find} House 8810

Photo Credits: House 8810

Hey everybody!  Today is my birthday, so I thought it very fitting to have these fabulous birthday themed items.  House 8810 is a very fun online store that has home items, gifts, and toys all with a vintage feel.  I especially recommend you check out the aprons!  They are all so cute, and literally half the price I usually see ones of this caliber going for.

On a side note, I recently added a follow me button to my blog, and I would love it if you clicked it.  For those of you who have never seen (or noticed) a follow button before, what it does is alerts you when I have a new post.

Have a wonderful weekend everybody!   


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