Friday, May 27, 2011

{Random Things} Weekend Hiatus

Image Credits: Pinterest

Hey everybody!  I wanted to let you all know that I'll be taking a little break from the blogging world because I'm busy helping get ready for my little sister's high school graduation.  I will be back next week.

Have a great weekend!    

Monday, May 23, 2011

{Causes} Tornado Victims

Photo Credits: Fox News

Yesterday was a very tragic day for many people across the Midwest.  Here in the Twin Cities we had three tornadoes touch down, one that did significant damage in Minneapolis.    

Photo Credits: Fox News
  Then just a few hours later Joplin, MO was hit very hard by another tornado.  The death toll is astonishing, and is expected to keep rising.  They have said that over half of the town is completely unrecognizable.  It is currently tied as the worst tornado (in terms of lives lost) in United States history.

I can not imagine how it must feel to be in the victims position, and I pray that they are able to pick up all the pieces as quickly as possible.  Here are some ways you all can help those affected.

The American Red Cross:
Text "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation, or visit their website here.

Convoy of Hope:
Text "CONVOY" to 50555 to make a $10 donation, or visit their website here.

The Salvation Army:
Text "JOPLIN" to 80888 to make a $10 donation, or visit their website here.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

{Random Things} I have the decorating itch.....

I'm not sure why, but I always get excited to take on new projects at home.  It's been a few months since I've really been working on a home decor project, and I kind of want to do a little update to one of the rooms we haven't touched yet.  I was thinking either the main floor bathroom or the laundry room because they don't really feel like ours yet.  They are in the exact same state the former owners left them in.  

Our main floor bathroom is basically a blank canvas.  The wall color is a nice neutral brownish tan, but I think it could use a little sprucing up. Here are a few pics of what it looked like when the former owners had it, and what it looks like now (which is pretty boring).  

I really like these stencils I found, and thought they might be a good choice to do on the main wall in the bathroom.

Image Credits: Cutting Edge Stencils

I think the left and middle ones might be my favorite.  The one on the right might be a little too modern for the rest of our house, and I'd like to keep things somewhat cohesive on the main floor.  I also like that I could leave the paint as is, and then just stencil over to create a whole new look.  These look like such a great alternative to wallpaper, which I'm loving right now, and it would be a lot less expensive.  

As far as art for the bathroom goes, I was thinking of doing some framed architectural drawings (which being an architecture buff, I love).  There are so many that I like, but here are a couple examples of some.

Photo Credits:
The laundry room is a disaster.  I've never really taken the time to organize it, and it ends up being the dumping spot for stuff I don't know what to do with.  Here are a few pictures of the laundry room, again, the first from the previous owner and the last two of what it looks like now (which is pretty scary).  

In here I think I want to paint it a bright blue, like maybe Tiffany Blue, and just add some decorative touches.  Then of course organize, organize, organize.  I truly believe that if a room is pretty, you'll want to be in it, even if it is to do laundry.  Here are a few inspirational images I've found.

Photo Credits: Design Sponge, Great Interior Design, and Pink Balloons & Macarons.

I would definitely want to paint all the walls, and I think I could round up enough stuff that I wouldn't really have to buy too many "new" items.

I have a busy couple of months coming up, but I think each of these could easily be done in a day or two.  Something to think about for sure.  

Friday, May 20, 2011

{Fab Find} Magpie Lovely

Photo Credits: Magpie Lovely

Hello everybody!  I hope you all are having a lovely Friday!  I'm excited to tell you all about Magpie Lovely (such a cute name).  Their stuff is extremely cute, and it's all hand made.  Pictured above are a few of my favorite clothing pieces.  All of them are made custom when ordered, and they are surprisingly affordable considering.  The items above are priced between $40 and $90.  Not to bad for a skirt or dress that is made according to your exact measurements.    

Photo Credits: Magpie Lovely

They also have some pretty adorable accessories.  I really love this clutch, and it comes in lots of other fun patterns too.  The belt is also a very fun concept.  

Photo Credits: Magpie Lovely

If that wasn't enough already, they have some pretty great home accessories too.  These are just a few of my favorites.  

That's it for this week's Fab Finds.  I hope you all enjoy Magpie Lovely as much as I do.  Have a great weekend!

Monday, May 16, 2011

{My Life, Scrumptious, and Soirees} A Little Bit Of Everything

Hey everybody!  I had a great weekend, and I hope you all did too.  Jason has been gone, so it was great to be busy and distracted.  It started with me finishing up this semester in school.  Yay!  Then on Saturday I had a great night with a couple of friends (Amber and Alli) getting ready for our friend Michelle's long awaited baby shower.  We went and got pedicures, grabbed dinner, and then came back to my house to get everything ready for the shower.  

As I had mentioned before, we had been planning on having the shower in April, but postponed it when Michelle had Baby Ethan early.  It turned out to be the perfect day.  Here are some of the details.     

We started the shower by having a sit down lunch.  We kept it very simple and just went with mini sandwiches, salads, and fruit.  We served various kinds of tea, and the teacups were part of the take home favors.  

In the kitchen we had a beverage bar and dessert table set up.  On the beverage bar we had sparkling water, french sparkling lemonade, and a raspberry sorbet punch.  We served the lemonade and punch in mason jars with paper straws.  The dessert buffet had jelly beans, reese cups, suckers, mini cupcakes (more on those to follow), and the adorable diaper cake Amber made.  

Instead of doing a traditional guest book, we opted to get a story book instead, and had everyone sign various pages throughout the book.  

We played several games, where the girls could win fabulous prizes, most of which were Aveda products provided by Alli.  My favorite game was the "Dirty Diaper Game."  One of my co-hosts melted various candy bars into diapers, and everyone had to guess which candy bar they were.  It made for some pretty funny pictures.  

Ethan is such a good baby!  He stayed up for most of the shower, and didn't really cry at all.  He just grunted, made cute noises, and looked around.  Such a cutie!  

After all the games, I snapped some pictures of Michelle with all of the guests, and then one with her and the hosts (us).  By the time the shower was coming to an end, Ethan was pretty tuckered out.  It was such a fun day.  Thank you to everyone who came!  

Okay, now back to the cupcakes.  I made Key Lime Mini Cupcakes, and they were a huge hit.  The best part was the frosting.  I used my usual Cream Cheese Frosting recipe and added graham cracker crumbs to resemble a crust, and it turned out amazing.  I will definitely be using this again and again.  Since everyone liked them so much I'm including the recipe.  I hope you all have a great week, and enjoy the recipe!    

Key Lime Pie Cupcakes with Graham Cracker Cream Cheese Frosting

Cupcake Ingredients:
- 1 box lemon cake mix
- 1 small box lime jello
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/3 cup key lime juice
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line two cupcake pans with paper liners (24 total).  In a stand mixer on low combine cake mix with jello.  Add all other cupcake ingredients, and mix on medium speed until the batter is smooth.  Divide batter evenly between cupcake liners.  Bake for 16-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  

Glaze Ingredients:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 1/2 tablespoons key lime juice

While cupcakes are baking whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth.  When the cupcakes are done, pierce the tops with a fork, and then brush the glaze over the tops.  Let cool completely and frost with Graham Cracker Cream Cheese Frosting.  

Frosting Ingredients:
- 8 oz block of cream cheese, softened
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened  
- 1 1/2 cups finely crushed graham crackers 
(I used my food processor to crush)

Mix cream cheese and butter until smooth.  Slowly add the powdered sugar and blend until light and fluffy.  Then add crushed graham crackers, mixing only until combined.    

Friday, May 13, 2011

{Fab Find} Mona et June

Photo Credits: Mona et June

Happy Friday everybody!  Today’s Fab Find is an awesome store called Mona et June.  They are relatively small, but they have some pretty amazing clothes.  I particularly love their selection of dresses.  They are all really cute, and very affordable.  All three of the dresses I picked for this post are under $50.  

I hope you all enjoy Mona et June, and of course I hope you all have a fabulous weekend! 

Monday, May 9, 2011

{My Life} Busy, Busy

Hey everybody!  I hope you all are having a great Monday so far!  There is a lot going on in the Senti household right now, so I have a lot to cover.

Last week I booked a trip for my little sis and I (Katie, from Sapphire Chic) to New York City in June.  It's our gift to her for her 18th birthday and for her high school graduation.  I can't wait.  I absolutely love NYC, and I didn't get to take my yearly trip there last year so I have the itch.  It'll be Katie's first trip there, so it should be pretty exciting for her too.  I also found out last week that after only being home for a day we will be leaving for Washington DC right after because Katie won the US Congressional Art Competition in her district.  They are flying her down there to be honored, and her piece will be hung in the US Capitol building for the next year.  I am a very proud big sister.    

Every year Jene, from Jene's Gems, has a peep contest for Easter.  I had been wanting to try making a peep wreath for a while, so I thought what better excuse than for this lovely contest.  I was very excited to find out that I had won, and last week I received a $25 gift card to Starbucks and a pretty little note from Jene.  Thank you so much!  My first beverage, a Coconut Mocha Skinny Frappicino, was delicious!     

Last night we went out for our friend Derek's birthday to Oceanaire.  It was absolutely delicious.  Good drinks, good food, good times.  

We woke up at 6am this morning to a thunderstorm.  Jason had been tossing and turning all night, and I instantly woke up because I thought Doggert would be scared.  About a year and a half ago he started getting really scared during thunderstorms to the point he could barely breath because he would shake so hard.   It was weird because they had never really scared him that bad before.   We started giving him Melatonin, a natural sleep aid for humans, because we read that in dogs it actually calms them down without drugging them or making them sleepy.  We also read many things that said unlike anxiety meds it actually helps them work through their fear.  After giving it to him off and on over the last year, sure enough this morning we didn't need to.  He was awake and alert, but didn't shake once or appear to be scared at all.  He has spent the rest of the day making up for lost sleep though.  I definitely recommend looking into this if any of you have a scared pooch out there.  It apparently works for all kinds of fears.  

Moving on...we have a busy rest of the month coming up.  Jason is leaving for Vegas on Wednesday for  a week or so, and I will be busy prepping for the postponed baby shower that is coming up this Sunday. I will also be finishing up with school this week for the semester.  Then all my focus will be turned to my sister's graduation party.  We have lots of good ideas, and I can't wait to see how it all comes together.  I'm also really excited to see family I don't get to see very often.  

Well that's it for now.  I hope you all have a fabulous week!  

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

I just wanted to pop on quick today to wish my Mom and all the other mother's out there a Happy Mother's Day!  I hope you all are enjoying your day!  

Friday, May 6, 2011

{Fab Find} Matchbook

Photo Credits: Carol Dronsfield via Matchbook

Hey everybody!  I'm very excited to bring you this week's Fab Find.  Matchbook is an online lifestyle publication that I've been slightly addicted to lately.  Their content touches on a little bit of everything, and the general feel of the magazine is so whimsical and beautiful.  I love all the hand-drawn illustrations throughout it's pages.

Photo Credits: Matchbook

Here are just a few of the many pretty pages of this months issue.  I like how Katie, the Editorial Director, mixed all these items seamlessly together to make one beautiful collage of bows.  I mean, who doesn't love bows?  It made me pretty happy to see that many all together at once.

For all you brides out there, this particular issue has a whole section with some pretty fabulous wedding tips, so there's a little added bonus for you ladies.

Well that's it for this week.  I hope you all enjoy Matchbook as much as I do, and I hope you all have a splendid weekend!      

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

{My Life} A little of this, and a little of that.

Hey everybody!  I hope you all had a great week last week!  I know I did.  Friday night I hosted a Royal Wedding Viewing party.  It was a blast.  Then on Saturday I went out for drinks with a few girlfriends, and it ended up turning into a pretty fun night. 

Photo Credits: This is Glamour and Rosella's Lane.

I've been in a really crafty mood lately.  I want to start adding some other accessories to my Copper Owl line.  I started making my first bag last week.  The first image above was my inspiration.  I also want to try making laptop, iPad, and iPod covers which the image on the right inspired me to try.  It's actually a cd wrapper, but it made me think of electronic cases.  I just have to figure out how to adequately pad them.  I also want to start a new line just for kids.   On top of all that, I've been chugging along self-teaching myself web design.  It's increadibly addicting, but equally as frustrating.  If anybody wants their blog redone for free while I'm learning, I'd be happy to do it for practice and to build my portfolio.  I can only do Blogger ones right now though.

Well that's it for me today.  I'll talk to you all on Friday for this week's Fab Finds (I'm pretty excited about it).    I hope you all enjoy the rest of your week! 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

May Day Copper Owl giveaway! The winner is....

The randomizer has spoken, and Amanda Larson is the newest owner of a necklace from The Copper Owl!  Congratulations!  

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