Helloooo… I hope everyone is gearing up and getting excited about the
fast approaching upcoming holiday season! Today I would like to discuss the Annual Holiday Family Newsletters. How many of you have watched your mom type and print(or worse… write by hand!) the yearly family newsletter? You know what I’m talking about… that separate piece of paper crammed in the holiday card envelope, boasting of you and your brother’s latest achievements?! It must be a mom thing. I never noticed my mom sending out her yearly newsletter until i was a teen(even though she said that she has been sending them out every year for YEARS), but i do remember thinking she was absolutely NUTS for putting that much time and effort into such a silly thing. I thought “who cares? No one is going to read this”. The older i got, the more i realized that my mother is not the only crazy one who sends out these family tidbits every year. I also understand now that the intention of these yearly updates was not to “toot our own horn” but to let our family and friends that we didn’t keep in touch with all that often, know what was going on in our lives. It was a tradition for my mom to send these lengthy updates every year. She loved sending them and she loved receiving updates from other families as well. We would get family photos, cards, and newsletters from families that we haven’t seen in years! I think my mom STILL exchanges holiday card newsletters with a family that used to live down the street from us as kids. CRAZY! Anyways… I’ve gone off topic! My point is that this family newsletter thing is still a tradition today. One of my best friends asked me a few weeks ago if Little Red Tulip would consider leaving the backs of our cards blank so that she could write her newsletter on the backs of her holiday cards. Great idea, i thought! But why would you want to hand write the same newsletter on 50 holiday cards? That doesn’t sound fun at all! So we have decided to leave a space and make the backs of some of our holiday cards completely customizable. You can send your love, family newsletter, business newsletter, favorite holiday greeting or quote, and your family photo ALL ON ONE CARD!! Let us know what you think!?
My-Oh-My! What a terrific giveaway!!! Head over to HorseFeathers Gifts blog and check out how to enter to win over $1600 in prizes, including a virtual gift card from LittleRedTulip.com!
Helloooo Funday Monday… I wish you were still Lazy Sunday, BUT we always try and make the most of our “dreaded” Mondays in this household. With 3 very energetic children out of school for the summer, the house can look like a tornado came through by 10am! So I have been browsing all of the fun(and messy) activities for kids on Pinterest. Last night I came across “The Water Blob” tutorial… sounds crazy fun, right?? To give credit where credit is due, the tutorial for the water blob can be found at http://www.clumsycrafter.com/2012/05/water-blob-tutorial/
So… at 9am I show up, duct tape and 10ft x 20ft plastic sheeting in hand! I’m fully prepared to wear their little butts out on this water blob before noon! Isn’t that the goal of any activity with the kids? To wear them out so they’ll take a good long nap (hopefully all at the same time) so you can eat your lunch in peace, and clean up their path of destruction before the next tornado hits?!?! If not… don’t judge me… I’m just the nanny. Here’s a timeline of how the morning really went…
9am– The kids are jumping up and down at the word “water blob” (they don’t even know what it is yet, but it just sounds so fun)
9:30am—Bug spray and sunscreen are ON, and we are out the door and into the back yard to tape up the water blob.
10am—Water blob is taped and ready to be filled. Here’s where it gets good! The water blob is a quarter of the way full… just enough so that the kids are able to see how much fun this is going to be! Each one of them has a “job”. Addison, the oldest (4yrs) is holding the hose. Paige, second in command (almost 3 yrs) is standing in the middle of the blob so that the water doesn’t all run to one side since there is a slight slop to the back yard. And Dylan, the youngest (20 months), has only one job… “OFF”.
10:10am—Dylan walks up to the part of the water blob that is just starting to look full and fun, and pats it. Looking back on it, I should have recognized his “I’m sorry” pat, because in his other hand was a stick about a foot long. He must have thought it would be fun to poke a few gazillion holes in the water blob. Boys… they ruin everything sometimes!
10:25am—The water blob is completely deflated and the kids are now playing in the puddles of mud.
10:30am to 11:30am—I bring out the good old sprinkler… you know the kind that sprays a fan of water back and forth. This seemed to do the trick (wear them out).
So… even though the water blob was a fail, we still had fun, got dirty, and stayed cool in the 100+ degree weather! What are some of your favorite summer activities… for kids?
I would really like to think of myself as a soft pretzel connoisseur. Any time I see them on the menu, at a ball game or if I’m at the mall, I would get a soft pretzel as my “special treat”.
I really enjoy going to a baseball game with my husband and I would always get a hot pretzel. That is just one thing that never changed until last year. After 3 different visits to different ballparks I decided to not waste my time on the carbs. They were not serving hot or even warm soft pretzels. They were cold and dried out. They just weren’t even good. This was very disappointing. So my husband decided to searched for a recipe that we could make at home. We found one that Alton Brown makes and they take some time but they are sooooo good.
Then the other day I was on Pinterest and I found a recipe on there that looks awesome.
Homemade Soft Pretzels: Don’t Spend $3 at the Mall. Make “Em Fresh!
Posted by brooke mclay
STEP 1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees
STEP 2. In a large bowl, whisk together water and yeast. Stir in the sugar and set aside 1-2 minutes until the mixture is foamy. Stir in 3 cups of the flour.
STEP 3. Begin kneading the dough, adding additional flour until it is soft, but not at all sticky.
STEP 10. Gently tug the pretzel out, keeping the dough from getting too fat at any point. Set aside on a lightly floured surface and allow to rise slightly while you finish twisting the other pretzels.
So the next you are out and about just remember you can make these at home and you know that they will taste great.
Hey guys, It’s Lezlee again and this time I’m here to discuss spring trends in COLOR!
This season is all about vibrant and fun new color combinations. In fact, Color of the Year 2012 is Tangerine Tango, an amazing shade of bright orange that doesn’t have too much yellow (a little wishy washy) or too much red (too intense). It’s a fantastic happy color and not, by any means, drab. It’s perfect for home décor, like if you don’t know what to do with that neutral blah room, punch it up with accessories in this bright orange color.
Knowing these new color trends are a wonderful way to spend my time internet surfing great way to spice up my previous collections. Frequently I’ll go through and adjust the colors in my patterns but I wind up with
a million quite a few files because I have the worst time choosing which ones to actually use! So for this blog post I managed to narrow it down to a few… and then a few more… oh well, here are some that look fantastic and give new life to old patterns.
Oh so chic, navy and pink is such a hot combination.
Fun and flirty, pink and orange is perfect for spring and summer.
Bright and colorful is always better, so start pairing greens with pinks!
Perfectly balanced, neutrals with a pop in this teal and tan combination. Fortunately, you can combine just about any pop of color with a neutral and it will always look amazing.
Fun with a natural touch, I love this tan, coral and teal palette.
See what I mean? And what’s even better, these color palettes are perfect for experimenting in your wardrobe, your home décor, even your stationery! Be bold this season, cause this is the best time to try it. I mean hello it’s a TREND.
The celebration is over. The gifts are unwrapped. You had a blast and enjoyed yourself. But before you move onto the next event on your busy calendar, take time to let those who made your celebration so special know you appreciate them and what they did for you.
You may ask, can’t I just send an email or write on their Facebook wall? You could, but writing a thank you note is just the right thing to do. It shows manners, thoughtfulness and is an easy way to make a great impression. By taking the time to write a hand-written note, you’re sending the message that the gift or gesture was important to you. A hand-written note is also memorable. Don’t be surprised if they keep your card.
Get started by making a list of who to thank. Your list should include any and all gift-givers as well as anyone who did anything to help out with the celebration – including friends who helped plan, decorate, baked or brought food, ran errands, etc.
Your thank you note should have a distinct beginning, middle and end. To get started, chose your stationary – thank you note cards or even postcards are fine. Your message will be brief so it’s best to avoid full-sized sheets of paper.
The beginning should express your sincere thanks. Avoid the just writing trap. You are not ‘just writing to say’ as in I am just writing to say; that’s stating the obvious. Opening sentences could start with: Thank you so much for…, It made my day when I opened…, I appreciate the time you took to…., I’m so grateful you were there when…..
The middle section should include a reference to the gift or activity. Let the person know what the gift or action meant to you, why it is special, how you’ll use it or something memorable about the event. Here are a few examples:
- Yellow has always been my favorite color, and the vase will match perfectly with my new sofa.
- I plan to use the graduation money you sent to decorate my dorm room.
- The baby shower you hosted meant so much to me. To have my friends and family in one place to share in this special occasion was an experience I’ll never forget!
Now you’re ready to conclude your thank you note. Restate your appreciation with kind words. Let the gift-giver know you value what they have done for you. Here are a few examples of concluding sentences:
- Again, thank you for your generosity. I’m so excited about college. I’ll let you know all about it when I get settled. We felt so honored that you made the trip to be with us on our wedding day. We can’t wait to see you again soon!
- Your kindness has always meant so much to me through the years of our friendship.
And you’re done. Be sure to get the proper postage and drop it in the mail. You now have the tools to keep this lovely tradition, not only alive, but make it thrive.
By: Laurie Berkin
Here’s a really cute little Easter basket that you can make for your Easter table.
Stamp your guests’ names and they do double duty, as a place card holder and a fun favor basket you can fill with treats!
First start with a 7 inch by 7 inch square of card (heavy weight) stock.
Choose a light, springy color (I used a cover weight paper by Paper Source in Pool).
Score at 2 inches and then again at 5 inches.
Turn paper 45 degrees and score again at 2 and 5 inches. See above, figure 3.
This is a great place to get out your border punch if you have one and punch all around the square.
If you don’t have one, no worries. But it adds a nice detail.
Make a cut in the paper from each corner to the score line at a 45 degrees angle.
Then apply double sided tape. See above, figure 5.
Fold up all sides to make box.
Make a handle by cutting a strip of paper 1 1/4 inches by 10 inches. You can use your border punch here if you have it.
Attach handle with double sided tape to inside of basket. Now embellish your basket.
Attach buttons, ribbon, rick rack, paper flowers…. get creative! See figure 7, above.
I color copied my Easter cards onto cardstock.
You can also use family photos or any other image you like.
Trim to size and then attach image with double sided tape after stamping or writing the recipients name on it.
Set out on your Easter table as place cards… fill with treats….. so cute!
These would also work for birthday party favors, baby shower favors and would be super cute at a Halloween Party too!
Happy Easter, Happy Spring!
A couple of years ago I took a wonderful trip to Italy. I had been to the country before, but it was my first time visiting Venice. I recently took another look at my photos and found some that wonderfully illustrate the glorious nature of decay at work in the city.
A snippet of a wall at the edge of the sea…a sign hanging between shutters in the marketplace…the colors are soft and powdery…the layers of materials and textures hang together as a beautiful composition. The rusty sign and faded blue shutters against shades of barely peach and red brick, beautiful. Creamy stucco overlaying rough plaster. They flake off of the sandy brick to expose the processes of construction and deterioration.
I was surprised by how taken I was with Venice. It is not an exaggeration to say that there was something lovely to be seen around every corner; we wandered everywhere. Do go if you have the chance. I hope to find my way back for a second look myself.
By: Darcel Phillips