5 New Uses for Cupcake Liners

Happy Friday, sweet things. If you’ve been following me this week, you’ve noticed a theme: new uses for old things.

fresh-start

Today is a third edition that’s all about cupcake liners. These colorful paper discs can be incredibly handy – and pretty. Read on!

cupcake-liners-in-a-jar

{Look how smart this is. Glass spaghetti jars are the perfect size for a sleeve of standard cupcake liners.}

Before we begin, did you know…The paper baking cup became popular in the 1950s? They were produced by by an artillery manufacturer called the James River Corporation. They were motivated to produce something different in the post-war era because of the declining military market. So…cupcakes it is!

Okay, now here are five brilliant ways you can use cupcake liners – outside of a muffin tin:

{ONE} Gardening

Flowerpot Liner: When you don’t want your soil pouring right through the bottom of your flowerpot, it’s good to put a barrier around the drainage area. You can use rocks or even broken pieces of another terra cotta planter.

For another idea, drop a cupcake liner down inside the pot when planting. The liner won’t completely clog the hole, so water can gently drain through.

flower-pot-liner

{TWO} Serving

Drip Catchers: No one likes popsicle juice running down their arm on a warm day. Right? So make a simple drip catcher out of a cupcake liner. Yay!

P.S. These fruit and veggie bars are super delish!!

popcicle-holder

For a quick tip: I folded the paper liner in half and punched a small hole for my popsicle stick.

hole-punch-trick

Drink Covers: Another serving trick is to take a paper baking pan, which is like a sibling to the regular ‘ol cupcake liner, and place it over a drinking glass. I put it over a large Mason jar in the pic. below.

The “lid” keeps annoying bugs out of your glass. And if you’re really thinking ahead, you could have people write their names on the top so it serves as a drink label, as well.

drink-cover

I used the same hole-punch idea by folding the baking cup in half and punching a spot for my straw. Cheers!

baking-cups

{THREE} Driving

Cup Holder Protectors: If you’re not a fan of crumbs or strange, sticky substances getting jammed down inside the cup holders of your car, let me introduce you to silicone cupcake liners.

These magical things fit perfectly down inside your cup holder and can be easily removed, washed and returned at any given time. You can find them here.

{FOUR} Decorating

Paper Peonies: Oh, how I love a bundle of fresh peonies. When they’re not in season, like now, you can whip up a batch of these paper beauties.

These are made with cupcake liners that are all in various shades of pink. So pretty!

{source} The full tutorial can be found here, too.

{FIVE} Celebrating

Party Garland: Looking for an easy way to jazz up your next party? These party garlands are a cinch to string together.

I’d recommend putting something (like straws cut into 1-2 inch pieces) between each of the cupcake liners to help spread them out a bit.

Mini Ghosts: With Halloween right around the corner, I had to give you a perfectly themed idea. Much like yesterday’s post.

Take a large white cupcake liner, draw a cute or spooky face on one side, and then place it over a battery-operated tea light.

ghost

Here’s what it looks like assembled together. Wouldn’t it be cute to put like a dozen or so of these on a mantel or down the middle of a table?

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In addition to pulling off some of these tricks, I hope you can squeeze in a little baking this weekend, because who doesn’t appreciate a little lovin’ from the oven? Cupcakes rock.

In fact, my girls like to invite friends over to play Cupcake Wars. >>

cupcake-wars

This was a picture we took a couple of weeks ago at an overnight party. See the M&Ms getting dropped down into the batter? These girls had lots of tricks up their sleeves!

Oh, and for a quick baking tip, did you know to put uncooked rice in the bottom of your cupcake tins before lining them with your paper cups? The rice soaks up moisture and keeps the liners from getting greasy during baking. Gotta keep those liners looking pretty.

That’s a wrap – for now. Here’s to a great weekend all around!

XoXo,

Kate

CupFiveonfriday

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5 Ways to Arrange Flowers Like a Pro

Don’t you love how fresh flowers instantly brighten a room? It’s no wonder they’re used to celebrate special occasions or come attached with an apology or condolence. Flowers are our little messengers…expressing love, joy, hope, sorrow.

As special as they are, I try not to treat them like my China, though. I make them part of my every day life. For example, I keep rosemary next to the sink, so steam from the hot water releases its fragrance. Blooms always beam from our dining room and kitchen tables. And every now and then I’ll put sprigs of lavender on my night stand to soothe me to sleep.

My love of the garden certainly comes from my mom, and any knowledge of arranging flowers comes from this trendy little shop where I worked in college. The designers were crazy amazing, and I tried to soak up every ounce of inspiration.

My five favorite flower arranging tips

{ONE} Keep it Simple

lillies

Whether you’re snipping flowers from the garden or picking up a bunch from the store, think about choosing all the same color. Monochromatic designs are so simple – yet pretty.

For this arrangement I grabbed a bunch of white Alstroemeria lilies. I cut them all the same length and tucked them into a small vase. (We’ll talk about the vase in a bit.)

Another approach is to get different types of flowers that have the same color. That way you get a variety of textures in your arrangement.

{TWO} Play with Scale

sunflower

When you cut a long-stemmed flower really short, it gives it a more dramatic look. Take this sunflower for example. It’s not every day you get to look down on a sunny face like this. Wouldn’t it look cool to line up four or five of these down the middle of a dining room table?

I paired my sunflower with a few hostas from the garden, which gives it a fresh twist.

Speaking of hostas…I saw an episode of Fixer Upper where JoJo put single stems of hostas in tall clear vases arranged on a mantel. It was the perfect touch without being too fussy. It looked a little like this >>

{THREE} Branch Out with Your Greenery

greens

Most people think of leather leaf fern when it comes to greenery. But it can be way more fun to shop in your backyard for things to toss into your bouquet.

{Believe it or not, I did learn this from the flower shop. The owner would come back from a weekend in the woods with baskets of greens, pine cones, and twigs. He was so creative!}

Anyway, take a look at the picture above. You’ll see the top two plants are actually herbs. Sage is on the left and lemon thyme is on the right. They add not only texture, but also a nice fragrance.

The lower left was clipped from my boxwoods. These are full on bushes, you guys. And they make such pretty greenery. Then the lower right is a giant leaf from my Black-Eyed Susans!

arrangement with greens

Here’s how I pulled all of them into a small bouquet. BTW, this was just one of those $5.99 bouquets from Walmart. Look how the greenery makes it feel more like a true garden bundle.

{FOUR} Contain Your Blooms

vase

For a word or two about vases…

They come in all shapes, sizes and colors. And they play a big role in how you pull your arrangements together. A square vase can give you a modern look, and a super tall vase can create an elegant display.

I have to say, though…if you’re not a work-at-home-florist with tape, wires, or frogs to help hold your flowers in place, you’re pretty much going to want a vase that has a small neck to hold your stems upright.

The one shown is my go-to because it has a narrow neck and flairs out at the edge to help the flowers fan out. That way they don’t look like I just shoved them down inside a vase.

{FIVE} Think Outside the Vase

vase with hostas

Okay, remember the vase from the first arrangement? Here’s a better look. I covered it with two hosta leaves, then secured them in place with raffia.

Below is what my leaf looked like to start. I cut the stem off the bottom before layering it around the vase.

hosta leaf

You can use any large leaf or even a row of sticks to line the sides of your vase. This helps cover any messy stems. Oh, you can also use ribbon or pretty scrapbook paper. Can you tell my wheels are spinning?

I think I’ll do another post sometime soon about the many ways to cover vases! In the meantime, I hope that was helpful.

Enjoy your Labor Day. And I’ll be back on Tuesday with a fun post about “new uses for old things”.

XoXoXo,

Kate

CupFiveonfriday

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Friday Wrap: Olympic Proportions

Can I just say…I’m incredibly pumped about the Summer Olympics officially kicking off tonight with the opening ceremonies!

Olympics

In all seriousness, I do know someone who is competing this year.

Be sure to cheer extra loud at your screens for U.S. Olympic Diver Kristian Ipsen. He’s not only an incredible diver, but the lucky boyfriend of my niece, Lilly. She’s an accomplished diver herself, and I’m super proud of her. <3

Kristian+Ipsen+Olympic+Athlete+Medalists+Visit+PoFAZ94PY6_l

This was at the 2012 Olympics in London where Krish landed the bronze in synchronized diving with Troy Dumais.

In addition to watching every flip and turn of diving, I’ll be glued to the tube watching swimming and gymnastics. Those are my absolute favorite sports to watch. (I still remember watching the Magnificent 7.)

In honor of this special occasion, here are some fun facts to know and things to do from now until the closing ceremonies on August 21st.

{ONE} The Meaning of the Rings

olympic rings

Okay, so I knew there were five Olympic rings, but I never really thought about ‘why five’ and ‘why those colors’. Have you? This helpful article explains it all for us. It turns out, it’s not as clear cut as you might expect. Here’s an excerpt…

Baron de Coubertin, a French aristocrat and intellectual, explained his design in 1931:

“A white background, with five interlaced rings in the centre: blue, yellow, black, green and red…represents the five inhabited continents of the world, united by Olympism, while the six colors are those that appear on all the national flags of the world at the present time.”

Because the rings were originally designed as a logo for the IOC’s 20th anniversary, it’s probable that Coubertin originally thought of the rings as symbols of the five Games already successfully staged.

Now there’s something interesting you can toss into the convo during commercial breaks. 😉

{TWO} Getting All Patriotic 

You know all of those cute 4th of July decorations? Well, thank goodness I didn’t put them away. They’ll be perfect for some USA-themed watch parties. (Three cheers for a little procrastination.) Did anyone else keep their decorations up, too?!

red, white and blue mason jars

These are painted Mason jars – handcrafted by my sweet twins!

Oh, and I’m sure I’ll be whipping up some of these lovelies below at some point, which didn’t quite happen on the 4th. Oops! Good thing we have another excuse to pull out the star-shaped cookie cutter.

star shaped hand pies

High Fives for the Berry Hand Pies!

{THREE} Sampling Some Brazilian Flavor

Speaking of food AND since the Olympics are in Rio this go around, I wanted to learn about Brazilian culture and try some authentic recipes. Here are a few that are both easy and delicious. That’s worth a gold medal in my recipe book!

The first one up is a Classic Caipirinha. It’s made with Brazilian rum, limes and sugar! (You had me at rum.) Get the full recipe here.

Brazilian-caipirinha

PS. The recipe calls for cachaca, which is a type of rum, but it’s not like your typical Bacardi. You’ll want to find the real deal if you can.

Now for some sweets!

This is little number below is called Creamy Brazilian Cornmeal Cake and it’s served at breakfast or even after a meal – like a dessert, I guess. You can find this recipe (and more) on this blog!

braziliancornmealcake

Bonus points if you serve up the cake (or anything for that matter) on a ‘gold medal’ plate like this >

Gold Medal Plate

This gold paper plate just has a ribbon glued to the back. How stinkin’ clever.

{FOUR} Dressing the Part

Once the decorations and food are covered, all that’s left is dressing up with some team spirit. Face painting optional.

I decided to make some shirts for my girls with USA-themed iron-ons and soft, white tees. I hope I can stick the landing on these. I’ve had some iron mishaps in my past. #stilltrying

USA iron-on applique

I found these at Hobby Lobby!

{FIVE} Cheering & Playing Along

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I think THE best part of the opening ceremonies is the Parade of Nations. I love seeing all of the athletes marching into the stadium with pride and honor. I get chills every time.

Flag bearer Mariel Zagunis of the U.S. holds the national flag as she leads the contingent in the athletes parade during the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium July 27, 2012. REUTERS/Jorge Silva (BRITAIN - Tags: SPORT OLYMPICS)

This shows US athlete Mariel Zagunis holding the national flag during the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

If you get as excited as I do, and you want to follow along with each of the participating countries this year, check out this list. You can even see the name of each country’s flag bearer and what sport they’re competing in.

Then…during all of the commercial breaks, you can create your own version of the Games!

Here’s a great post with some funny ideas. I think Tennis Table Toppling might be my favorite idea. And for the medals >>

Olympic-Party-Games-Prizes

My kind of prizes for sure.

That’s it for now, my friends. How are you celebrating the Olympics this year? I hope it’s full of cheers. Go USA!!

Kate

CupFiveonfriday

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Friday Wrap: Fired up for 4th of July

{These are actually plates from Khols! Cute, right?!}

{This is actually a plate from Khols! Cute, right?!}

Happy Friday!! And how is it 4th of July weekend already? I have been looking forward to this date for quite some time, and it arrived in a flash. Why the excitement – other than my love for sparklers? We have some dear friends traveling up from Houston to visit us. In fact, they’re on their way now! Yay!

You know what that means, though? I’ve been in power mode this week getting things ready for our guests. I’ve been organizing and freshening up decorations around the house. (Nothing like a visit from friends to get me fired up to do these much-needed tasks.)

Since it’s 4th of July weekend (and the Summer Olympics begin next month), I decided to invest in a few patriotic items. I can keep them out all summer. First, we got our flag situation figured out. Now we can fly Old Glory any time. Well, during daylight hours. (If you need tips on flag etiquette, I posted this a few weeks ago.)

We’ve also been busy with these little projects. Check ’em out and maybe give them a spin for yourself!

{ONE) A Front Door Salute

4th of July front door

I saw something similar to this online. I decided to give it my own spin with a galvanized holder. I also like how the white hydrangeas look against our dark door.

This is a wider angle that shows our pinwheels in the urns. I also updated our pillow on the right there.

This is a wider shot that shows our pinwheels in the urns. I also updated our pillow on the right there.

Side note: I’ve been toying with the idea of painting our door a different color. I might have to poll you all soon. For now it’s just a classic black. Hmm. More on that later.

{TWO} Patriotic Blooms

IMG_1331

This is a project my girls did all by themselves. I was so proud of them. They sat in the garage together and chatted and painted until they appeared with these amazing vases. Girls after my own heart.

They saw the idea on Pinterest. (Yes, my 10 yr. olds love Pinterest. They also share my account, so if you ever see an overpopulation of puppies and nail art in my feed, that’s probably a clue they’re online.) Anyway, I love how their creations turned out.

We filled the vases with Shasta daisies from our garden. I also tucked in a few sprigs of Lamb’s Ear. Oh, and we used a red bandana to help pull it all together on our outdoor table. <3

{THREE} Red, White & Blue Hues

Clara's 4th of July nails

These are Clara’s cute nails.

Okay, so as I hinted a moment ago, nail art is becoming a thing in our house. Avery & Clara weren’t totally into it* until they started seeing cute designs on Pinterest. They saw a picture that had red and blue nails with white polka dots, so we pulled our our fancy nail art kit and did them ourselves. Look at those darling digits. 😉

*I think nail polish felt like makeup at first. The girls aren’t into that kind of thing, yet, so it felt funny on their fingers. Once they looked at it as an art project, it completely changed their mind. Isn’t that funny?

{FOUR} 4th-inspired Food

You can’t have a 4th of July spread without something looking like a flag. Am I right? Especially with so many creative ideas out there. The one above was my favorite, because it seems fairly healthy. I thought the yogurt covered pretzels were a smart way to add white stripes.

I also bought a star-shaped cookie cutter to make a few of these numbers…

{source}

{source} This is simply star-shaped watermelon with blueberries and strawberries. I think it would be delicious with this dip!

hot dogs with cheese

{source} This would make a great lunch. I love the star-spangled cheese. Lol!

star shaped hand pies

{source} I’ve never made hand pies before, so I’m a little intimidated by this recipe. Here goes nothing!

I haven’t assembled any of these recipes just yet. I have all of the ingredients ready and waiting. I can’t wait to see how they turn out. I promise to post pics on Instagram! Follow me @KateJAndersen so I can follow back and say “hi!”

{FIVE} Star-Spangled Bangles

FullSizeRender

Our friends who are visiting us this weekend have a five-year old daughter. Avery & Clara can’t wait to pretend she’s their little sister for a few days. They’ve been planning all kinds of fun activities to do with her. This is one of our favorite ideas above.

It’s a bracelet made with blue beads and straws that are cut into short pieces. The bracelet (on the right) is our prototype. We used ribbon (instead of embroidery thread or string) so it was easy to tie. I think it also looks cuter once it’s finished.

What are you up to this weekend? Will you be celebrating with friends? Whatever is on your agenda, I hope it includes sparklers at some point!!

-Kate

CupFiveonfriday

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Flag Day Etiquette

Today is national Flag Day, and I’m excited to participate now that we have a flag pole installed on the front of the house. (Special thanks to my sweet B who took on this project over Memorial Day weekend.)

American flag on house

I was quick to raise our American flag as soon as I could, and even did a little research to be sure I was flying it correctly. I know the basics about not letting it touch the ground, but there are many more ways to honor our flag. I thought I’d share in case anyone else was a little rusty on the rules.

Displaying the American Flag

Feel free to download this printable, or pass the image along and encourage others to join in the spirit of Flag Day, the 4th of July or any other day you’d like to raise the Stars and Stripes in support of our country and all those who live here.

With liberty and justice for all,

Kate

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Inspiring Beach Takeaways

There were plenty of thoughtful takeaways from our recent trip to the beach, like the long chats with my almost-teen son, the laugher-filled games of Go Fish with my girls, and the quiet moments watching the waves with B. Those experiences are locked in my heart, and I threw away the key.

I also had a few tangible takeaways. So I thought it would be fun to shake out the suitcases and show you what made it home.

Some of these might even inspire a DIY project or two for you!

{SEASHELLS FROM THE SEASHORE}

Sand dollars are my favorite kind of currency. So I was pumped when I found this gem hiding in the sand on Shell Island. (It’s about the size of my palm.) I carefully tended to this fragile creature until I arrived home. Now that we’re here, I plan to display it in a shadow box.

sand dollar

{source}

{This shadow box is from Pottery Barn and inspired my idea. I love the monochromatic look.}

We also gathered a few other beautiful shells that I want to place on the mantel. While I was looking at all of the nautical items at Pottery Barn, I noticed this shell cloche that’s quite pretty. I’m thinking about making my own. Any ideas on how I could attach a stick to the base – so it would hold the weight of a shell?

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{A GOOD SOUTHERN READ}

There’s a darling bookstore in Seacrest, FL called Sundog Books. They had an entire section devoted to Southern fiction, which holds a sweet spot in my heart.

southern fiction

In addition to all of the titles you can make out in the picture above, I found a few other titles listed below that I’ve added to the reading queue. (You’ll notice one of these isn’t like the others. The book of lists falls into the category of my obsession with organizing. #cantstopwontstop)

Have you read any of these? If so, which should I read first?!

beach reads

{THAT SALTY BEACH SCENT}

I have a “thing” for smells, as I have indicated in previous posts. It’s true. I have quite the super-sniffer, which is probably why this salt candle is one of the best gifts I could have splurged on during our trip. It came from my new favorite store and smells like a breezy day at the beach with a slight hint of sunscreen. If you want to light up your life with this lovely fragrance, you can but it here.

sea candle

{PHOTOS TO HAVE AND TO HOLD}

Thank goodness my husband is so great with taking photos. He remembers to have his phone/camera handy at the most perfect times, which is why we had so many great pics from the beach. Now that we’re home, I wanted to find fun ways to archive these great memories. I found several options and wanted to share.

FamilySearch Memories: This mobile app is free and lets you capture all kinds of family memories for keeps. It’s a true digital scrapbook that includes the option to record audio interviews in addition to tagging your photos with family member names and locations. I think this would have been fun to use during vacation. Must remember.

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Mixbook.com: You can easily make printed scrapbooks by selecting from beautiful templates and uploading your images into the pages. They start at about $15 per book, which is a good price compared to other companies I’ve seen.

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 7.50.23 PM

online photo book

These are some of the beautiful travel-themed templates.

Smilebox: This is free software that allows you to create fun collages or slideshows (with music and graphics) that you can post on your social channels or email to your family. You can even create cards with your pics, too.

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 8.04.05 PM

Chatbooks: If you’ve posted all of your favorite trip pics on Instagram or Facebook you can easily turn them into a Chatbook. They’re only $8 per book, which is the best price I’ve seen so far. It looks like you can also upload photos from your phone in the mobile or desktop app. This might be a winner.

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 8.13.27 PM

Let me know if you’ve travelled anywhere recently and what treasures you brought home. I always love a good show & tell!

XOXO

-Kate

 

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St. Patrick’s Day Prep

irish blessing

Hello, my friends. I wanted to share a few easy ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s day. Even if you aren’t Irish, it’s fun to get your green on and join in the festivities. The holiday is right around the bend, so let’s see what we can do!

{Decorate with Greens}

Traditional shamrocks, also called Oxalis, are lovely to have around the house this time of year. They make you feel lucky just looking at them, and they’re beautiful enough for a centerpiece. Add this to your decor, and you’re good-to-go!

You could also buy an assortment of fresh cut flowers that feature shades of green. Here’s a chart that helps you identify a few choices. It’s a nice little cheat sheet for calling your florist!

green flowers

This is so lovely, I could almost frame it as a print! {source}

{Wear a Pinch of Green}

You don’t have to deck out in green from head-to-toe. Maybe try just your head? Look at these adorable hair clips I found on Etsy. It’s simply a series of loops that have been hot glued (from what I can tell) in the center. Then it’s all glued to a clip. I’m going to attempt to make these for Avery & Clara this afternoon.

For a more grownup option, you could tie your hair in a Celtic knot. Isn’t this gorgeous? You’d still have to add a touch of green somewhere, but I have an idea for that…

Celtic Knots

How about a touch of green on your nails? This is a super easy way to feel festive. I posted some nail options on Friday, and I decided to go with the minty polka dot!

minty polka dots

{Treat Your Friends}

A large part of St. Patrick’s day is about gathering for parades, beers, and general camaraderie. So why not share a few Irish kisses while you’re at it? Check out this easy DIY jar filled with golden kisses.

I’m thinking this would be cute for not only my friends, but also my kids’ teachers. If you can’t find the gold-wrapped kisses, you could make a version with chocolate “coins” and add a message of “Wishing you a pot of luck!” (I’ve seen tons of coins in the Easter candy section.)

{Serve a Shamrock Snack}

Instead of serving up the McDonald’s version of a shamrock treat (that contains 820 calories – yikes!), I much prefer this option. Cut a kiwi into slices and use a shamrock-shaped cookie cutter to make these sweet treats! These would be cute served for lunch. I could also see these served on a tray with green grapes and green apples.

Enjoy your preparations. I’ll see you on Thursday with a special St. Patty’s Day blessing! Until then, “May you have the hindsight to know where you’ve been, the foresight to know where you are going, and the insight to know when you have gone too far.” #irishwisdom

-Kate

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Friday Wrap: Hopping into Spring

The daffodils are in full bloom. Soccer season has kicked off. It has rained every day this week – canceling some of said soccer. Pinterest is full of bunnies, chicks and Easter decorations. And I’m in need of a pedi.

Yep, it’s officially spring!

Here are five “springy” things I’d like to share from the week.

{ONE} Bunny Bunting

This is one of my favorite decorations this year – outside of my Easter tree that’s filled with sweet little eggs I’ve collected over the past few years. I found this bunny bunting at Hob Lob, and it looks adorable stretched across our mantel.

bunny bunting

{This is a closeup of one of the buns}

Easter mantel

{This is how the whole mantel pulled together. My kids giggled about the idea of “toasted buns.”}

I also love these little bunny tail cookies. I may have to make some of these next week. Pillsbury is rocking their holiday-themed recipes. Have you noticed that?

{TWO} Darby Smart Solutions

What goes hand in hand with spring cleaning? Spring organizing! I swear it’s a thing. So when I saw all of these storage solutions from Darby Smart this week, I was in heaven.

{This canvas bucket would be adorable in my office!}

{This canvas bucket would be adorable in my office!}

{THREE} Dog Party USA

We started taking Leo to a day camp once a week to help get some of his springtime energy out while we’re at work and school. This week it was especially helpful. We’ve had so much rain, he hasn’t played outside as much as usual.

Judging by this picture, I’d say it’s working. He literally slept from the moment we picked him up until the next morning. It reminded me of picking up the kids from daycare when they were babes. Sometimes they’d fall asleep in their dinner. Yes, I said “in.” Lol.

IMG_0187

{FOUR} St. Patrick’s Day Planning

I guess we have to ease up on Easter a bit so we don’t skip right over St. Patrick’s Day. With these holidays so close together this year, it would be easy to do. But with my strong Irish background, I promise to do right by the green-wearin’, beer-drinkin’, folk-singin’ celebration.

Here’s some inspiration for my mani/pedi that’s scheduled for tomorrow. #finally

Should I go with the minty polka dot or gold glitter contrast?!

Be sure to stop back on Monday for more St. Pat’s ideas!

{FIVE} Daylight Savings!

Yet another sign of spring is moving our clocks forward an hour. Remember to do this on Saturday night before you go to bed, my friends!

Here’s to more light in your days ahead.

-Kate

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Feast on Your Easter Grass

It might sound strange to grab a handful of grass from your Easter basket and toss it into your next smoothie, but that’s exactly what you can do when you grow wheatgrass!! Plus, there are all of these health benefits. Thanks, Easter Bunny!

Rosie4

Speaking of…here’s our little Easter bun, Rosie. She loves to eat wheatgrass. No wonder she’s so healthy! <3

Oh, and while we’re still on the topic of eating grass, have you seen this video clip of Adele in Jamba Juice? It’s hysterical. Enjoy your daily laugh.

Okay, now for the serious business of preparing our baskets…

Wheatgrass grows super fast. In fact, in less than two weeks you can have a lush basket. If you start this week, you’ll be right on time for Easter. And depending on how quickly your seeds germinate, you might even need to “mow” before you add your eggs and ribbons!

Here are the super easy instructions for growing your own Easter basket grass.

Supplies

{one} A plastic plant saucer that’s close to the size of your basket.

 

{two} A quality potting mix.

{three} Wheatgrass seeds!

{This is from Amazon, but you can get this at most health food stores.}

{This is from Amazon, but you can get this at most health food stores.}

{four} Spray bottle.

spray bottles

{These are from Dollar Tree. Sometimes Walmart carries these in the health and beauty section.}

Now What?

This process will remind you of making lasagne. Here’s why…

  1. Fill about 3/4 of your saucer with potting mix.
  2. Spray with water to moisten the dirt.
  3. Plant a generous layer of seeds. There shouldn’t be any dirt showing.
  4. Cover the seeds with a light layer of potting mix. (See all of the layering – like a lasagne?)
  5. Spray the fresh dirt (your top layer) with water. You want there to be enough water for everything to be wet, but not swimming.
  6. Place the saucer in a warm, sunny window to “bake.” 😉

Growing Tips

  • Before planting your seeds, rinse them in cool, clean water. Then soak (completely covered) in cool water overnight. This helps speed up germination.
  • Wheatgrass does not do well in direct sunlight once it has started sprouting. So find a spot that allows for indirect light once you have some greens.
  • Use a water bottle to spray your wheatgrass as it grows. Make sure the soil is always moist. If it dries out, the sprouts will turn brown and die very quickly.
  • It should take about nine days for wheatgrass to grow six inches >>

That’s it! Here’s hoping your grass hops to it in time for Easter.

-Kate

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Embellished with Ease

Before I dive into some beautiful DIY embellishment projects, I have to ask…

Did ya’ll know March is national craft month?

Whaaat?! I stumbled upon this news while I was googling craft supplies, which is a fairly common activity for me. I can’t believe I haven’t heard about this before. What bolt of fabric have I been living under?

Most of my favorite crafty spots were offering specials in honor of this glorious holiday. So first, I gathered the great deals I could find into one, organized spot for you:

  • Craftsy – enter to win a $700 mystery box
  • JoAnn – 50% off one item using promo code: CRAFT70
  • Blitsy – sale pricing on select items
  • HSN – special pricing on select craft items
  • Hobby Lobby – up to 50% select craft items

(If you know of others, please share!)

Next, I decided it would be fun to do a few projects together. Let’s kick things off with a few fast & fun embellishments. Shall we?

PS. I completed these over the weekend. Our schedule was packed with soccer games and playdates, so you know these had to be easy if I was able to tackle them in a few short hours. 

{Tassel Necklaces}

Have you spotted the hot tassel trend? I started noticing it last summer. And now that spring is around the corner, tassels are on everything – like these darling jewels and all of these.

Instead of buying a bunch of new baubles, I decided to jazz up a few pieces I already own – like this beaded necklace >>

finished necklace

necklace closeup

How? I tied a tassel to a charm, then used the metal ring from the charm to attach to the necklace. Easy, breezy.

tassels

These silk tassels were from Hobby Lobby – in the sewing section. Notice I only paid $1.99 for 4 tassels. TIP: I found a much better selection online than in store.

{Simple Message Board}

Next up, this little number was something I created from a square picture frame, a piece of pretty scrapbooking paper and ribbon. Once I assembled everything, I jotted a happy note with a dry erase marker.

I placed this in my laundry room because I was needing happy thoughts in there – especially now that soccer season has started. Yikes.

dry erase frame

All of the supplies for this project came from Hobby Lobby. (They’re not an affiliate link or anything. I just shop there all of the time because we have a store right down the street.) Anyway, among many things, I like getting picture frames from there because they’re usually 50% off. Score.

{A Sweet Tee}

My budding Southern girls love having their stuff monogrammed: backpacks, journals, cups, hair ribbons, bracelets, tees…you name it. I’m seriously considering getting a Cricut just so I can personalize everything myself.

Until that time, I found these adorable iron-on letters. It literally took less than 5 min. to embellish this sweet pocket tee from Old Navy.

monogrammed pocket

Didn’t this turn out so cute? The pocket helped ground the design, so the letters weren’t floating in the middle of nowhere.

monogrammed letters

The letters are sold separately, so you can get the right shape to make the overall monogram. This is the packet for the letter “M” that went on the right.

{Pretty Office Supplies}

You may remember I made a small batch of these paper clips during my home office makeover. (PS. I’m still loving my space!!) Well, I use these little clips all the time, so I made more for the collection.

ribbon clips completed

ribbon clips

These are gold paper clips that have been embellished with pretty black & gold polka dot ribbon. I cut the ribbon to about 5″ long before tying to the clip. TIP: Tie to the small end of the clip so it’s easier to attach the clip to papers, etc.

{Fancy Picture Frame}

For whatever reason, I have a stash of plain black frames in my garage. I think they were left over from one of Brandon’s office moves. Anyway, they’ve been sitting there looking at me for who knows how long. So I decided to fancy them up for my black-and-gold themed office space.

Look what happens with a little gold glitter washi tape. Magic, I tell ya’ >>

washi frame after

washi frame closeup

This is a closeup so you can see how pretty it looks. Also notice I cut the corners at an angle so the tape didn’t overlap.

washi frame before

I was in luck that the frame was the exact width of the washi tape. If your frame is wider, you could easily apply several rows of tape (vertically). Pick a tape that doesn’t have a pattern (like this glitter) so it blends seamlessly.

{A Jar of Markers}

This is a bonus idea, and something that was given to the girls for their birthday a few weeks ago. It was such a thoughtful gift – and fit perfectly with today’s theme. I decided to go ahead and share it with you!

embellished marker jars

These are Ball jars that have been embellished with stickers and filled with colorful markers and highlighters!

marker jar lids

Burlap flowers were hot glued to the lids.

marker jar

Each jar was personalized with black glitter stickers. Simple and darling, right? My girls really loved this gift from their friend, Haila.

Have fun crafting this month – and always. What projects are you working on? I’d love to know!

-Kate

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