Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 Recap

Everybody else is doing it! So in the spirit of conformity, I'm going to make like a high school girl and copy my peers. Here is my recap of some of what got accomplished in 2011.

I made a rainbow cake for my sister's 14th birthday.

I shared the guest room makeover.

For Father's Day I made homemade oreos.

We hosted a Fourth of July celebration at our house.

I made herb stuffed bell peppers.

After finding my grandmother's recipe in a cookbook, I tried my hand at baking a red velvet cake.

Pinterest inspired me to make mozzarella sticks.

We threw a party for Halloween.

A command central was created in the pantry/laundry room.

I painted the half bath downstairs.

Eric built me a desk.

My friend Sharon and I baked an ombre cake for our friend Kelly's birthday.

It was fun looking back on what I've done this year! Here's to more fun in 2012. =)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

From One Holiday to the Next

Did anyone else go out for a little day-after-Christmas shopping? I had to work, but I left around lunch time and headed to Target to check out what they had. Parking out in the boonies was an unfortunate side effect of going shopping on a day everyone else was too, but it was worth it. Walking is decent exercise. =) Everything in Target's Christmas section was 50% off so that was pretty nice and I was able to grab a few things.

Check out my spoils.

The disco ball ornament sets were $2.50 each and the felt tree ornaments were $0.50 per set. Not bad. I love a good sale price!

So with that taken care of, I was free to move on to the next holiday - New Year's Eve! Every year it's tradition for us to have a New Year's Eve party. When I was living at my mom's house we would have it at her place every year, but now that I have a house we host it here.

Last year we hosted a Mardi Gras themed murder mystery party.

It was a big hit and lots of fun so we are going to have another one this year! This time it will be 20s themed and with that in mind, here are the pieces that will somehow come together to be my costume. I'm really looking forward to Saturday!

What are your plans for New Year's Eve?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Re-cap

Warning! Picture-heavy post ahead.

I hope everyone had a very merry Christmas! I sure did. We started out by heading to my grandfather's house on Christmas Eve in the morning and spending time with my mom's side of the family.

They have 2 cats and one of them is pregnant. It was so cute and McKenna loves animals so she had to hold it. =)

We all went to eat lunch, which kind of turned into a fiasco. Originally, we were headed to a steakhouse, but upon arriving discovered that it was closed so we called everyone to go to another restaurant that we didn't actually end up going to. We finally ended up outside Ruby Tuesday wondering if it was open since there were a thousand cars at the Cracker Barrel next door and 2 at Ruby Tuesday's. After checking the doors and finding out that they were open we went in and got a table and then saw that all the waitresses were wearing tacky Christmas sweaters so that was fun to see.

After getting back we opened presents and I had to take a picture with my sisters, of course.

We then headed back to my mother's house to see my father's side of the family, including our little cousin.

McKenna had a fun time playing with him and teaching him a new game. =)

After hanging out with them for a while we went to our church's Christmas Eve candlelit service and then back to my mom's for taco night! Which I think will be a tradition now because we did that last year too.

I got a great gift, a new camera! Ahh! Yes! That is really what it was!

Please excuse all the crap on the floor - that's my post gift-wrapping mess that I neglected to clean up. Just keepin' it real. The important thing here is to look at the awesome camera box.

I went by my mom's house afterward to drop off something for McKenna and I took that chance to take some pictures with the new camera.

I love my mom's red and green tree!

I also love my sweet little sister. =)

It was definitely a most wonderful Christmas weekend. I had a fabulous weekend with friends and it was great to slow down and take some time to remember why we celebrate this time of year.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Tis the Season to ...Party?

Yep, we had another party. My BFF Kelly had her birthday last week so of course we had to have a party and celebrate. I wanted to bake a cake for her and I got an idea and ran with it. My friend Sharon came over to help me and totally went along with my cuckoo bananas idea. I remembered seeing an ombre cake on Pinterest a while back and that's where I got my idea from so run with it we did!

Kelly's favorite color is blue so we decided to do shades of blue. We took a cake mix and prepared it according to the directions and then divided it into four glasses which we then colored blue.

We baked two layers at a time in pans that we greased with butter and powdered sugar (yahoo answers tip there - actually worked pretty well!). We just made sure to check on them sooner than the package said since we made 4 layers instead of 2.

My lovely accomplice!

With the first 2 layers in the oven, we were free to dance!

Then back to work... I assembled the bottom 2 layers and frosted while Sharon got the top two layers into the oven.

Then Sharon assembled the next two layers once they were ready.

And the finished product. Check out this bad bay - with a 'K' for Kelly!

Of course I had to take a picture with it. =)

And the birthday girl with the birthday banner (a tradition for any friend who has a birthday).

And of course, the inside of the cake.

If you know me by now, I totally neglected to pick up birthday candles since Sharon's party a few weeks ago soooo Kelly also got the privilege of blowing out the soy candle. =)

Here's what we were left with by the end of the night.

I'm so glad the cake actually turned out properly and go Pinterest for another inspiring idea! =)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Mystery Solved!

On Friday I shared with you this picture and left you to ponder what it could be.

I've talked before about my 'dream desk' that is sold at Pottery Barn. It's the Bedford corner desk and it's gorgeous. There's so much space to spread out crafting supplies, wrap gifts and more.

I snapped this picture of the desk in person when I visited Pottery Barn a while back.

Well, Eric made it for me!!

Please ignore the random blue paint on the walls - I am wrought with indecision.

I don't know how Eric did it, but he built this entire thing by himself with directions from Ana White's website. Impressed doesn't even begin to describe how I feel about how it turned out and I'm stoked over how inexpensively he was able to make it. It's everything I ever dreamed for a desk.

Thanks Eric! You rock!