Friday, June 29, 2012

4th of July Breakfast


What a perfect way to get together with those you love and eat breakfast right before the big 4th of July parade!


Last year I was searching for ideas for a festive family breakfast, but I was a little disappointed with what was out there on the world wide web. So this is what I came up with!

Menu
 ~ hard boiled eggs (dyed red, white and blue of course)
~ build-your own red, white and blue parfaits
(plain or vanilla yogurt, granola, fresh blueberries and strawberries)


I thought it was a great breakfast, but I love yogurt parfaits. Other ideas I was contempating was waffles or pancakes with strawberry and/or blueberry sauce or crepes stuffed with sweetened ricotta, blueberries and strawberries. I don't know if I can wait until the 4th for one of these yummy breakfasts!

What fun and festive breakfasts have you had on the 4th?

Hoping you have a wonderful 4th,

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

4th of July Cupcakes


This is just about as easy as it gets.

Mix-up the batter...



Dye it Red, White, and Blue...

Spoon it in a pan, bake, cool...




Cover in gooey frosting, add sprinkles...

and EAT!


Here's the recipe I use...

Better Cake Mix Cake

1 cake mix
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
1/3 cup oil
1/4 cup water

Grease and flour pan. (May use liners for cupcakes).
Mix all ingreadients in a bowl on low speed for 30 seconds, then on medium for 2 minutes.
Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes. (less time for cupcakes, about 20 minutes).











Monday, June 25, 2012

4th of July Tiara

Every little girl deserves a festive 4th of July tiara to help celebrate!

Here's a quick tutorial on how to make one for yourself using wired garland and curly ribbon.
Last 4th of July my girls and I made these festive tiaras to wear to the parade and other festivities. They are super cute and super easy. We'll be wearing them again this year for sure. :)




Here's where we're linking up.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Painted Kitchen Table

Some of you may or may not know that Emily and I have both recently moved, and with moves always comes lots of fun new decorating.

Soon I hope my kitchen is officially finished so I can show you the before-and-after photos. Truly, the transformation has been amazing to me. In these photos you can get glimpses of the new blue walls, the new white cupboards and doors, and our new maple flooring (all of which used to be dark and drab).

However, that is for a different day. Today, I want to show you one of our completed home projects--our newly painted kitchen table and chairs! Ta-da!



I love it!!!
Unfortunately, I didn't have the foresite to take before pictures, but I'm sure you can imagine it all being wood and in fairly good condition but also defintely worn and old looking.

My mom picked it up at a garage sale for a STEAL, not knowing entirely what she wanted to do with it, but sometimes good deals are just hard to pass up. :)

Well, she very kindly gave it to us as a house-warming gift and we went to town with the spray paint.



The original idea was to paint it all white, but I've seen a lot of pictures in magazines lately where the chairs are painted a different color, and I thought, why not? Then I went really crazy and couldn't decide if I wanted blue chairs or gray chairs (the splash board in the kitchen is blue, gray and white), soooo I did half the chairs blue and half the chairs gray, and I think it is really fun. :)

I used Rustoleum brand spray paint that was specifically for un-prepped surfaces (it said it even adhered to plastic)--I used this mostly because I was getting REALLY tired of all the house work! I didn't want to sand one more thing!. Call me lazy, but that's the way it was. So, I did a simple, easy prep on the table and chairs by applying a de-glossing chemical to them (squirt some on an old rag, rub on, and your done--easy, peasy). Then, I sprayed and sprayed and sprayed. I'd been told that the key to spray painting things was to do thin layers, so I did probably 5-7 real thin layers on the chairs and table legs. Sounds like a lot, but because I was doing thin, quick layers (so the paint wouldn't run) the coats went very quickly.  


Then after much debate, my husband and I decided to keep the table top wood (we thought it would look nice and we were a little worried that paint would just chip off of the tabletop too easily--maybe it wouldn't, but we were concerned about it). So, my husband pulled out his trusty sander and sanded away. Big kudos to him because he did all the edges by hand and it took quite a lot of work. But, we really like how it turned out--it's super smooth and the wood is nice. We used the same stain on the table as we did on our counter top edges (those pictures are in the works...)

Anyway, I really love how it turned out. It matches the feeling of the kitchen and fits the space well too. Big thanks again to my mom for giving it to us! It will be enjoyed for years to come. :)

And now, I'm going to go unload some more boxes. Anyone know where I should keep my witch hat in this house? Or my manilla envelopes? or the kids' art supplies????


Lots of love,


P.S. That's some of my yummy banana bread sitting on the table there. If you haven't tried that recipe yet, then you really should.... :)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Strawberry Pie


There are a few things I love about June.
The weather gets warmer, the days get longer, schools out. 


Its one of the best times of year actually.
But my favorite thing about June?


STRAWBERRY SEASON!


I seriously wait all year to make one of these beauties.

My mom used my grandma's recipe to make fresh strawberry pie, probably every year.
so technically I guess I could call it a tradition. But really, its just delicious.

Anyone want the secret recipe?
Actually its 3 recipes.
My grandma's, Jaime's, and mine...a mix of the two.
See, Grandma's uses jello and lemon juice in the sauce. Jaime's leaves those out, but adds crushed berries. Both delicious. But for me, I think the tartness of the lemon juice is oh so good with all the sweet, and the jello gives it an amazing color. The crushed berries make for a more fresh/natural taste, wich is always a plus. So I kept the sentimental and added the bonus berries :)

Here are all 3 recipes so you can make the one you fancy or create your own.

Strawberry Pie
(Grandma's)

baked pie crust
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup water
2 tablespoons strawberry jello
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Mix sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan. Add water. Boil until thick.
Add jello and lemon juice. Stir until dissolved and cool slightly.
Pour over berries in prepared crust. Refrigerate until set.


Strawberry Pie
(Jaime's)

baked pie crust
1 cup crushed strawberries
1 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch

Heat strawberries and water in a saucepan.
Mix sugar and cornstarch and add to strawberry mixture.
Cook until thick and bubbly.
Pour over berries in prepared crust. Refrigerate until set.


Strawberry Pie
(Emily's... my mix of the two)

baked pie crust
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup water
1/2 cup crushed strawberries (strained)
2 tablespoons strawberry jello
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Mix sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan. Add water and crushed strawberries.  Boil until thick.
Add jello and lemon juice. Stir until dissolved and cool slightly.
Pour over berries in prepared crust. Refrigerate until set






here's where we link!


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Alphabet Magnets (and more) For Sale!

ALPHABET MAGNETS!
For quite a while now our alphabets magnets have been our most popular post.
So we were thinking, what if some of you love these adorable custom magnets, but have no desire/time to make them yourself. We wouldn't want you to miss out on all the fun.
So we made some for you!
With the help of my talented little sister Lisa. Thanks Lisa!
Check them out in our brand-spankin'-new Etsy shop...


Here's a little preview.

PRETTY PLAID






BOLD AND BRIGHT




SPRINGTIME




TURQUOISE TREASURES








SUNSET STRIPES





We were having so much fun we decided to make some number magnets too.

SUNSHINE




SUMMER FUN




and some others just because
(who says their just for the kids)

ANTIQUE TWIST


go check them out!
 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

DIY Cake Stands

Special treat today for our readers!
We've become friendly with two other sister-in-law bloggers and wanted to swap guest post with them today. They have many, many creative ideas on their site--you won't want to miss checking them out.


Hi Everyday Art readers! We are Trish and Bonnie from the blog, Uncommon! We are excited to be here today to show you how to create one of our favorite projects...

DIY CAKE STANDS!

 If there is one thing I love about styling parties, it has to be the sweets table!  If you are planning out the table design, you will need to arrange your items at varying heights to keep the look interesting and polished.
  Now, I am a cake stand lover, but my budget does not allow for one in every shape, color and size.  A simple DIY cake stand was exactly what would help! So, I decided that I needed to make one or four (hee hee!)  that I can embellish for a particular event. They ended up being pretty easy to make and I even used a power tool... a drill!  Now, for all of you ladies who can rock a sander or saw super for you, but I was just excited that I didn't drill the stand to my deck! :)
Here is how I made them...

DIY Cake Stand Tutorial

Supplies:
furniture legs (I got mine from Home Depot)
rectangle or square 1 inch thick wood for the top
smaller square plaque for the base (Hobby Lobby)
drill and drill bits
spray paint
screws
Step One. The first thing you will want to do is drill all of the pilot holes.  A pilot hole is where you drill a small hole into the wood where you will insert the screw.  It helps to make sure the wood won't split!  You will need to drill one in the middle of the base piece, the top piece, and at the top of the furniture leg. 
Step Two.  Now you will screw the furniture leg right into the base piece.  The legs come with one screw already attached at the bottom, so this is a super easy part!
Step Three.  For this step, you will insert the screw into the pilot hole in the top and attach it to the furniture leg.  Just about all done!
Step Four.  Painting time!  You will want to sand the cake stand to make sure your paint will go on smoothly.  Next, add a few coats of spraypaint in your favorite color.  Now you have a nice, fully functional cake stand for a fraction of the cost!
At this point I could leave well enough alone, and use the stands as they are.  But.... well, you know me... I have to fancy them up a little!  Here are a couple of ways I have decorated them for events that I have styled, but the possibilities are endless...
Halloween: "Batty" Cake
Minnie Mouse Birthday Party Thank you Emily and Jaime for having us today! We would love for you to stop by Uncommon and visit us! You can also fing us on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest!
Trish and Bonnie
  follow us at... www.uncommondesignsonline.com
Join us each Wednesday for our "Uncommonly Yours" link party!

Thanks girls! Too, too cute. :)

Friday, June 1, 2012

Pink and Blue Striped Quilt

Finished the project! :)


What cute quilts! And not just one, but TWO matching quilts for my girls' new bunk beds. :) Phew! Quite the project, but I love how they turn out, and most importantly so do my girls. As these were my first quilts, I quite literally couldn't have done it without the help of family.

Remember Emily's Striped Quilt?

Well, I loved it, so when she came to town for a visit, I elicited her help (and her mom's and her sister's) to make a more girly version.



I love the fabric we found for it. As I mentioned in the "sneak peak" post, one girl wanted a "pink, Pink, PINK!" room and the other wanted "blue like the sky," so we found these great fabrics that were a beautiful, fun mix.

I followed Emily's directions for making the quilts with a few differences. 1) I made my stripes go vertically rather than horizontally as she did, mostly because I thought it'd be easier, and 2) I made my stripes thicker than her stripes, also because I thought it'd be easier. :)



It was a fun project, and I feel much more confident about sewing quilts now with all the help I got. The girls love them too--the most immediately wanted to snuggle in them.

Now for the rest of the room! I have all sorts of fun ideas for room decor; now comes the tricky part--deciding what to do. :)



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