Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Getting Ready for a Party ..... Joy in the Journey

This Saturday I'm giving a Valentines Birthday Luncheon
for some ladies from Relief Society which is our womens organization at church. And I wanted to share with you some of the preparations. Much of the fun in giving a party is in the preparations. One of my daughters learned this valuable lesson when she was only eight years old. We were preparing for our four years old daughters birthday party and my daughter Karen just loved to help me. She helped with the favors and the decorating. It was going to be using the Mickey Mouse motif and we had even bought a cake pan in the shape of Mickeys head. It came out of the pan perfectly. She helped make the icing and I showed her how to use a star tip to easily decorate him in the various colors. She did a magnificent job for an eight year old. And she was so very proud of herself. Well we had the party and it was a great success. All the children had so much fun. After... when we were cleaning up, Karen said 'Mama, you know getting ready for the party was alot more fun than the party.' I chuckled to myself for she learned a truth at such a young age. My mother use to tell me that 'Anticipation is often greater than the event.' And she was so right. I guess another way of saying it....its not just the destination but the

Joy in the Journey

These are the invitations that were hand delivered or sent to each person.



The paper is white with a pink and white square border around it. I purchased it at an office supply store. One hundred sheets came in a package. And I gave out or sent 30 invitations. The rest of the paper will be used in the future and possibly with a story or quotes to give out at the luncheon. I love the pink as it is so feminine and pretty. To give the invitation a little more 'custom look' I glued a small pink bow with a heart shaped 'jewel' at the top. I also meant to put on some white glitter on part of the edges but time got away from me.

I rolled up the invitation and tied it with small lengths of Pink Tulle. Then tucked a smallish silk flower under the tie and added a name tag. This tag is of this lovely Victorian Lady looking at roses. Some of the flowers I used were pale pink roses as shown here and some were with other pale pink flowers.

Thankyou for joining me today. I enjoyed sharing with you and will show more as the week progresses. It truly will be a beautiful affaire and I would love to have you join me.


PS. Don't forget to sign up for our Valentines Tea for
Two giveaway. That's two sets of cups and saucers as
shown below. You can put in up to six entries by
commenting on the previous post.(See post for
details.)  Good Luck. We'll be announcing the winner
on Saturday night Feb. 4th.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Valentines Tea for Two....My First Giveaway

Hello dear readers....I am SO EXCITED to tell you about my FIRST EVER GIVEAWAY .  And it is ta da......

 DARLING Valentines Tea Cups and Saucers

Aren't these just so fun. The color red is so vibrant and the heart shaped saucers just so cute. And the giveaway is for two sets. Thats for 2 white cups decorated with hearts  and 2 red heart saucers. And YOU can be the one to win!!!

Here are some more pictures for your enjoyment!




So here is what you should do to enter:

If you are already following me or you get my blog by email already then you can count that as two separate entries. You MUST leave a comment for each separate entry for it to count.
For one entry....leave a comment on this post.
For a second entry.....sign up to follow me and leave a comment that you have on this post.
For a third entry.....sign up to receive my blog by email and leave a comment that you haveon this post.
For a fourth and fifth entry.....Put this giveaway on your facebook and twitter pages and leave a comment that you have on this post.
For a sixth entry.....Put the giveaway on your blog and leave a comment that you have on this post.

Thats it! And thats a total of six entries. It STARTS today, Friday, January 27th and ends on Saturday, February 4th. I will announce the winner that night. Remember the
 DEADLINE is Saturday Feb. 4th by 6pm pst.


 This will be so much fun and you will love having these darling Valentine tea cups and saucers for your own
 ValentinesTea for Two!


   Looking forward to hearing from you all. And THANKYOU for joining me today.


Overflowing with Creativity

Show and Tell Friday

Between Naps on the Porch

Open House Party

Kristens Creations

Rock and Share Party

2805 Potpourri Party

Feathered Nest Friday

Inspiration Friday

Tickled Pink Fridays

Monday, January 23, 2012

Chinese New Years Today with Magazine Copycat Challenge

Hello Everyone...it is so good of you to join me today which is the first day of the Chinese New Year that lasts two weeks. This year is the year of the Dragon. And I have a couple of recipes that I think you might enjoy if you like good chinese food. But first.....

Debbie Doos Blog for all us Newbie Bloggers of less than 6 months has given us a magazine look alike challenge. It is to find a Magazine picture and put a spin on it your own way. So I've been looking through a bunch of 'old' magazines and saw this picture in the February 2000 issue of Martha Stewarts Magazine .And here it is.

Slow-Cooked Lamb with Prunes, Red Peppers and Dried Apricots, Coucous and Lavish Bread

So what is so special about this picture you ask? Yes it is Middle Eastern Food and WHAT does that have to do with Chinese New Years. Well.... I liked the squareish plate and how the eating utensils were placed at the bottom of the plate. And notice the round bowls to the left holding olives and some sort of condiment for the meat. I thought to myself that I could give it a similar took but with a chinese spin on it for Chinese New Year. And here it is.

 Mongolian Pork, Asian Spicy Garlic Green Beans, Fried Rice and Fried Wontons

Hopefully you can see the similarities. The plate is also white and square. The chopsticks..instead of knife and fork  at the bottom of the plate. CHINESE...The meat is Mongolian Pork with spicy green beans and red peppers and Fried Rice. 
MIDDLE  EASTERN ...The Lamb was with Apricots, prunes and red peppers  and Coucous.  
The Lavash Bread of Turkey and the Fried Wonton Wrapper..Chinese. On the left I used a white soup bowl filled with Hot and Sour soup compared to the olives and condiments put in the middle eastern one. Instead of another bowl with a condiment I used a small square white plate and put an egg roll and dabs of hot chinese mustard and sweet and sour sauce for dipping. And its all on a black tablecloth to make it pop. Come to think about it my last post was about black and white. Oh well....it works here too with chinese food. (smile)

 Here is a couple of   GREAT Chinese Food Recipes.

Asian Spicy Garlic Green Beans
  • 1 16 ounce package frozen green beans (thaw in microwave 2-3 minutes)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic chili sauce
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon cooking oil
1.    In a bowl, mix the soy sauce, garlic, garlic chili sauce, and honey.

2.    Heat the oils in a skillet over medium heat. Add the green beans, and fry for 3 to 5 minutes. Pour in the soy sauce mixture. Continue cooking and stirring 2-3 minutes, or until the liquid is nearly evaporated and the beans are done. But do not overcook. Serve immediately.

Fried Rice 

 2 cups uncooked instant riceClick to see savings
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, dividedClick to see savings
  2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Click to see savings1 cup (1/2-inch-thick) slices green onions
1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
1 teaspoon bottled minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1/2 teaspoon dark sesame oil
Thinly sliced green onions (optional)

 1.Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat.
2. While rice cooks, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggs to pan; cook 1 minute or until done, breaking egg into small pieces. Remove from pan. Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to pan. Add 1 cup onions, peas and carrots, garlic, and ginger; sauté 2 minutes.
3. While vegetable mixture cooks, combine rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, and sesame oil. Add cooked rice to pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add egg, and soy sauce mixture; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Garnish with sliced green onions, if desired.
NOTE: Using frozen peas and carrots plus bottled minced garlic and ginger speeds up preparation.

                                  Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine

THANKYOU for joining me today. On my next post I will be
announcing my FIRST GIVEAWAY. And you will love it!!
I will be participating in these wonderful blog parties:

   Your Cozy Home Scene

   Tabletop Tuesday

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Tour of Karens Cottage.... Part 1

Part 1 of a three part series.

 Today we are going on a little tour of one of my daughters homes.  Karen has decorated some of her living spaces in black and white with a touch of red  and she is a master at it. Both she and her husband love all things french. Her husband lived in France for a number of years and speaks french fluently. They love not only french design but also french food. She has a wonderful collection of french cookbooks. (Photo coming in future posts.) They have three children...two teenage sons and a 12 year old daughter. For Part 1 of the tour we are starting with
Her Cozy Sitting Room

First off Karen does all her own sewing. When she was little her favorite thing was my sewing machine so she learned to sew at a very young age and has been in love with it ever since. She made
*All the slipcovers and pillows herself.
*All the drapes and valances.
*Purchased thrift store frames and painted all of them plus many, many other thrift store items.
*Covered all the lampshades....again thrift store finds.
*Enlarged art herself and framed it making her own wall art.

This cast off sofa she covered with material that she had left over from a model home that she did for a contractor at a parade of homes. Her designs won that contractor an award for best in decorating.That bolt of black and white fabric was the jumping off point for her to do some of her living spaces in the black and white color theme.

Notice how she uses frames within frames with the backgrounds between the frames in paper prints. The plates were either given to her as gifts or again thrift store finds.

The pictures on the wall are really straight. I took this photo at an angle so it only looks crooked but is not. She has taken a picture of the Savior and made it the centerpiece for this wall grouping. You will find alot of religious art throughout her home because their religion and family are the focus of their lives.

This wall is adjacent to the love seat wall. You can't help noticing the beautiful antique christening gowns. She collects them and displays them. The one on the left and in the corner to the bottom right are from the very early 1900's. The one on the right that is hanging is from the civil war era. It was purchased at an estate auction for a mere $25. What a find!

The sofa table and large mirror anchor this wall. Isn't this just a lovely grouping. She painted both the table and the mirror herself. The red berries at the top of the mirror add a pop of color that brings the eye up.

         Karen loves to do vignettes and has done several here.

She has grouped things with balance yet diversity.

Love how the red berries and red italian book add color and interest.
Also did you notice the white battenberg lace runner. She loves various laces and uses them throughout her decorating.

This vignette adds another pop of red at another heighth to give added interest. She has some beautiful religious books that she likes to display and as a reminder to whom their faith belongs.

She made a gathered and fitted cover for the ottoman out of a coordinating print. She then topped it off with a black and white toile paisley print throw. The throw was a gift to her from her marvelous mother (moi). (Big smile)!!!

This photo shows two of her slipcovered chairs and is the window wall across from the love seat wall.

This black slipcovered  chair is her favorite chair.

This lace piece she purchased at a very small 'hole in the wall' thriftstore in a tiny touristy town. And she got it for $1. She was just delighted.

The toss pillows she made with fabric remnants.

Another lovely vignette on this little accent table. Again she made the topper and the table covering. Also the drapes.

This cute little guy is 'Thor.' They adopted him from a shelter. He was so shaggy they thought he was gray. They didn't find out he was really white and black until they had him groomed. Isn't he just adorable. When he shows his teeth, Karen says he's smiling. So he 'posed' for this photo. (smile)

Karen uses alot of ginghams. And so with this slipcovered chair.

Here is the whole sitting area. It is so cozy and inviting. Its a pleasure to just go and sit and visit and enjoy viewing all her vignettes and artwork. A truly lovely beginning to her charming cottage. It is so warm and welcoming!

Hope you have enjoyed our tour of Karens Sitting Area. Isn't it just wonderful!! Over the few weeks I will be sharing  Parts 2 and 3 with you.

Thanks for joining me. Its always fun to have you visit.


Vintage Inspiration Friday

Inspiration Friday

Feathered Nest Friday

2805 Potpourri Party

Rock and Share Party

Thursdays at Kristen's Creations

Open House Party

Show and Tell Friday

Tablescape Thursday

Overflowing With Creativity
 Cozy Home Scenes

Thriving on Thursdays

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