Monday, February 18, 2019

My Valentine + Another Giveaway!

Hello everyone!
Last week was a long one for me.
It started with a mom hunting me down in a store on Monday and screaming at me for not accepting her son's apology after he ran into me, I hope you know me well enough to know that is not true, and ended with me waking up to an earthquake on Friday morning.
Halfway through the week I was feeling pretty overwhelmed.
I have mentioned previously that I have anxiety but I don't think I have mentioned that it keeps me from sleeping.
A get a few hours a night if I am lucky.
Wednesday evening I was feeling really down and facing a night of no sleep was something I was not looking forward to. 
Erik could tell something was wrong, so he asked what was bothering me.
I told him what was on my mind and he immediately leapt into action.
He got me my night time necessities, a nice cold glass of water and my heating pad.
He gave me a foot rub, stayed awake and talked with me until way past his bedtime.
We were laying in bed talking and I watched as the clock ticked past midnight turning into Valentine's Day and thought how lucky I was that he was my valentine.
I knew that Erik would give me an amazing Valentine's Day in a few hours but it couldn't compare to that moment.
Roses and chocolate are amazing gifts but, having him take care of my needs meant so much more.

I am so grateful for Erik and his patience.
He is an amazing man and I am very lucky that I was able to snatch him up.
If I could give you one piece of advice, it would be to marry someone like him.
I hope you all had an amazing Valentine's Day.
And here is to a better week!

All my love,

P.S. I am doing another giveaway on my Instagram!
Head on over here to enter to win a pair of Rose Gold Minnie Ears in honor of my golden birthday!

Saturday, February 16, 2019

A Golden Birthday Party

Hello everyone!
It's almost my birthday!
Erik and I were both born on the same day of the month.
The 26th.
I enjoy being born on the same day for a few reasons. 
It's easy to remember, it's a fun fact to share but, the best part is that we get to celebrate our golden birthdays just months apart!
A golden birthday is the birthday you turn the age of the day you were born.
For example, I am turning 26 on the 26th.
Which reminded me that I never shared Erik's golden birthday with you all!

The Decor:
Gold, gold and more gold.
You can never have too much gold when it comes to a golden birthday.
Go gold or go home! 

I started with two gold tablecloths.
One sequin and one metallic.
The sequin tablecloth was used as the tablecloth and the metallic tablecloth was used as the backdrop.
I have so many gold letter balloons, I figured a saying was needed.
I went with "Stay Golden."

Some other fun sayings:
"You're Gold"
"Golden Boy" or "Golden Girl"
"You're Golden"
"Solid Gold"
I taped the balloons directly to the metallic tablecloth.

To add texture I added a gold fringe banner and let it drape over some of the balloon letters.
I originally planned on hanging several banners but, they were all different shades and it didn't look quite right so, I settled for the tassel banner on it's own.

I also got a large gold 2 and 6 balloon because you gotta!

Gold is back baby!
I never thought I would have gold accents in my home but I can't get enough!
I used some of our gold home decor to ad shape.
Like this gold sea urchin thing.

And this gold geometric sculpture. 

Erik's favorite candy is Reese's.
The miniatures come wrapped in gold so, I placed some in an apothecary jar and added them as a decoration as well. 

The Cake:
The cake should be the birthday persons favorite, right?
Erik requested a chocolate and peanut butter cake that I decorated with peanut butter candy.

I added a few gold details to the outside.
Gold candles, gold sprinkles and flecks of edible gold foil.

The Music:
Each year Erik and I choose a song for our birthday.
It usually includes the number of the age we are turning.
We had a hard time finding one for 26...
Since it is our golden birthday, we figured a song about gold would work.
Erik requested Golden Years by David Bowie and I couldn't have been more proud.

"Golden" Songs:
David Bowie - Golden Years
Macklemore - Gold
Prince - Gold
Imagine Dragons - Gold
The Turtles - Glitter and Gold
The Black Keys - Gold On The Ceiling
The Kinks - Heart of Gold
Bruno Mars - 24K Magic
Thompson Twins - Fools Gold
Ben Harper - Gold To Me
Fleetwood Mac - Gold Dust Women
Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs - Gold Lion
Smash Mouth - All Star
CHVRCHES - Make Them Gold
Kanye West - Gold Digger
Gallant - Weight In Gold
MIKA - We Are Golden
Galantis - Gold Dust
Kiiara - Gold

The Gifts:
Erik didn't have any gold items in mind for his birthday but, I did make sure they were dressed for the part.

My sister's golden birthday was a few years ago and I shared this golden birthday idea.
It included several gold items, including a gold Made By Mary necklace.
A gold or rose gold piece of jewelry is the perfect gift for a golden birthday.
It's on my wish list for sure!

I am so excited to celebrate my golden birthday.
As you know I am big into celebrations and we are going BIG since it's my golden.
What did/would you do for your golden birthday?

All my love,

Monday, February 11, 2019

Baylee Turns Six!

Hello everyone!
This past weekend my niece Baylee turned six.
Erik and I took her out on a little day date to celebrate.
We went to the mall and stopped by Claire's because that store is what little girls dreams are made of.
After our visit, I think my niece would have to agree.
There were having a deal; buy three things, get three free
So, we let her pick six items out by herself.
She chose a make up palette, make up brushes, a set of 5 rings, sparkly nail polish, a set of 3 bangles and a birthday crown.
Baylee saw a commercial for Olive Garden a few weeks ago and asked if we could go there.
I thought it would be the perfect place for lunch after our shopping trip.
When we arrived, she asked if she could get ready before going in.
She put on her crown, bangles, rings, and some gold glitter eye shadow.
It was so fun to watch her get all dressed up and take each item into consideration before putting it on.
When we walked in all the servers wished her a Happy Birthday.
She loved it!
She enjoyed playing games with Erik on her menu and ate all the breadsticks.
Since it was her birthday celebration she received an ice cream sundae and was sang Happy Birthday.
Afterwards, Erik realized that the Olive Garden shared a parking lot with Krispy Kreme.
And Erik cannot pass up a donut...
So, we made one more stop and got a donut each.
Baylee chose a valentine themed one that was decorated like a conversation heart.
She got the biggest kick out of the fact that it said "Call Me" on it. 

My nieces have such a special place in my heart.
I love to hear about their interests and watch their imaginations grow.
They are so creative.
I can't wait to see all that they accomplish.
Happy Sixth Birthday Baylee!
We love you!

All my love,
Aunt "Artie"

Friday, February 8, 2019

Homemade Red Velvet Pancakes

Hello everyone!
Valentine's Day is less than a week away!
I have always loved Valentine's Day and the opportunity it provides to show love to those around me.
There can be a lot of pressure associated with Valentine's Day to buy this and that. 
But, I believe that you don't have to drop a lot of cash to make it a good day.
It's about being with each other.
And making breakfast together is a great low cost option.
To make it even more festive I am sharing this delicious homemade red velvet heart shaped pancake recipe.

You will need:
2 Cups of Flour
3 Tablespoons of Cocoa Powder 
2 Teaspoons of Baking Powder 
1/2 a Teaspoon of Baking Soda
1/2 a Teaspoon of Salt
2 Cups of Milk
2 Tablespoons of White Vinegar
1/2 a Cup of Sugar
2 Large Eggs
1 and 1/2 Tablespoons of Red Food Coloring
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Extract
1/3 a Cup of Salted Butter, Melted
Metal Heart Cookie Cutter
Non Stick Spray
Oven Mitt

Cream Cheese Glaze
6 Ounces of Cream Cheese, Softened
6 Tablespoons of Butter, Softened
2 Cups of Powdered Sugar
1/2 a Cup of Milk
1/2 a Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract

Preheat griddle to 300o.
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt until well combined and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl whisk the milk and white vinegar together and let rest for 2 minutes.
Add the sugar, eggs, red food coloring, vanilla and melted butter to the milk mixture and whisk until well combined.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients slowly, while continuing to whisk, until just combined.
Grease the preheated griddle.
Grease your heart shaped cookie cutter with cooking spray and place flat on the griddle.
Fill the cookie cutter a fourth way full with the batter.
Use a toothpick to help spread the batter, if needed. 
Let cook for three to four minutes on the first side.
The pancake should rise half way up the cookie cutter.
Using an oven mitt, remove the cookie cutter from the griddle raising it straight up.
Be careful it will be HOT!
The pancake should keep its shape on its own.
Flip the pancake over and cook for one to two more minutes on the opposite side. 
Repeat with the rest of the batter.

Prepare the glaze.
In a mixing bowl, blend together cream cheese and butter until fluffy.
Add in the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla and mix until well combined.
Add more milk to thin or more powdered sugar to thicken, if needed.
Drizzle the glaze on top of the pancakes.

To make these pancakes even more festive I used a small heart shaped cookie cutter to cut the butter into heart shapes as well.

Using cookie cutters to make festive pancakes is a great option for any holiday.
Erik and I have done it since we were first married.
Making red velvet pancakes for Valentine's Day just seemed fitting.
And I am a huge fan of red velvet so you know I loved these!
What do you do to celebrate Valentine's Day?

All my love,

Monday, February 4, 2019

A Weekend Worth Celebrating

Hello everyone!
I hope you all had an enjoyable weekend.
Erik and I sure did!
It was rather eventful.
Friday was full of celebrations.
It was February 1st which means it's officially my birthday month!
We also made it through January.
It was national bubblegum day.
National wear red day.
And it was FRIDAY!
Needless to say we celebrated.

Saturday was Groundhog Day.
That may not be cause for celebration for some but Erik and I are big fans of Groundhog Day.
We read up on the history several years ago and got the biggest kick out of it.
Did you know that Punxsutawney Phil has found the elixir of life?
That's why he has been around for 133 years!
Humans have tried to use it but it just turns them fat and bald. 😂
What a riot!
Also, watching grown men wear top hats and get a crowd excited about a groundhog that predicts the weather is quite a sight to be seen.
Erik and I usually watch the big reveal together and then watch Bill Murray's Groundhog Day later that evening.
This year Erik asked if he could make me a special breakfast for Groundhog Day and of course I said yes.
Here is the masterpiece he presented me with.

Punxsutawney pancakes!
That man makes my world such a happy place.
We ate these while getting the amazing news that spring is on it's way.
Needless to say the pancakes will be part of our Groundhog Day traditions from now on.

Then Sunday was the Super Bowl.
Erik and I are usually with family but, this year we didn't have any plans.
We spent the whole day cooking
We made soft pretzels, chicken wings, green chili mac and cheese, a veggie plater and chips and dip.
We sat down and watched the entire game.
I was so full afterwards...

It was such a fun weekend.
I am grateful for a husband who will celebrate everyday with me.
How did you spend your weekend?
I'd love to hear!

All my love,

Friday, February 1, 2019

Homemade Candy Sushi

Hello everyone!
I have an unpopular opinion to share.
I do not like sushi...
Before you come at me, please know I gave it a fair try.
I have had it on at least three separate occasions and tried different things each time.
It's just not for me.
I feel like I miss out since I am not a fan so, I decided to make sushi I would like.
Candy sushi! 

You will need:
Rolling Pin
Cutting Board
Pastry Brush
Lots of Candy!

 I Used:

Cut one Rice Krispie Treat in half.
With the pastry brush, brush the top of one of the halves with melted white chocolate.
Place your choice of Swedish Fish on top.
Cut Fruit By The Foot into a three inch piece.
Place it over the top of the Swedish Fish and down the sides of the Rice Kripsie Treat.
Press the ends firmly to the Rice Krispie Treat to hold in place.

Using the rolling pin, flatten one Rice Krispie Treat to half its original height.
Place a Haribo Berry at the top of one end and roll until it's completely encased.
Cut of excess Rice Krispie Treat.
Wrap Fruit By The Foot around the entire roll and cut off excess.
Press the Fruit By The Foot firmly to the Rice Krispie Treat to hold.

Cut one Rice Krispie Treat in half.
With the pastry brush, brush the top of one of the halves with melted white chocolate.
Cut one of the Orange Slices in half.
Cut triangles along the ridges of the orange to make it look more like salmon.
Place one half of the Orange Slice on top of the white chocolate.
Cut Fruit By The Foot into a three inch piece.
Place it over the Orange Slice and down the sides of the Rice Krispie Treat. 
Press the ends firmly to the Rice Krispie Treat to hold.

Cut each Mike and Ike into three equal pieces.
With the rolling pin, flatten one Rice Krispie Treat to half of its original height.
Place the Mike in Ikes at the end of one side of the Rice Krispie Treat in a single layer, an inch or two along the treat.
Roll the Rice Krispie until it's completely encased. 
Cut of excess Rice Krispie Treat.
Wrap Fruit By The Foot around the entire roll.
Cut off excess.
Press Fruit By The Foot firmly to the Rice Krispie Treat to hold.

I melted a little bit of milk chocolate in a small bowl for our "soy sauce."
Erik loved the taste of the entire candy sushi dipped in it but, I found it a little too sour for my taste.
I did enjoy dipping things in it individually though.

These turned out so fun and were super easy to make.
There are a million different ways to make them too!
Think of all the candy possibilities... 

As you may know, Erik and I celebrate Chinese New Year each year.
We will be celebrating with these fun sushi.
I know that sushi is Japanese but, the Japanese did celebrate Chinese New Year once upon a time.
These sushi would be perfect for many other occasions too.
Valentine's Day, it's coming up!, birthdays, date night or just because. 
What would you want in your candy sushi roll?

All my love,

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Fourteen Days Of Valentine's | 2019

Hello everyone!
If you did not know, each year I do the Fourteen Days of Valentines, a present each day from February 1st to February 14th, for Erik.
I have done this each year since we have been married.
Last year was the fifth year and I thought it would be a good stopping point and allow me to try something new.
I mentioned this to Erik a few weeks ago and he was pretty bummed out.
A lot more than I expected...
I always said I would continue to do it if I could find new treats and new sayings so, here we are with another Fourteen Days of Valentine's.
Lucky for me Erik isn't a picky eater and is always finding new things he likes.
I missed putting a few years on the blog but, check out 2015, 2017 and 2018 here.

Almond Joy
It is a "joy" being your wife!

Razor Heads
You are "sharp!"

I "melt" in your hands!

Nacho Cheese Dorito's 
You are "nacho" average husband!

Apple Slicer
Anyway you "slice" it, you are the best!

Barbecue Sauce
You are awesome "sauce!"

Coffee Grounds
Where you "bean" all my life?

Outshine Bars
You are one "cool" guy!

You can do any frozen treat for this one. 

Star Wars Lego Set
"Yoda" one for me!

You could do any Lego set and say we "click" or  never "Lego."
I just can't pass up a good Star Wars pun...

Torani Cherry Syrup
I love you "cherry" much!

Erik loves to add this to his drinks at the gas station so, I thought he would like having some at home.
I found it on Amazon

S'mores Cereal
I love you "S'more" than anything!

Any S'more related treat would work for this one as well.
Erik is a fan of S'more cereal. 

Coke Zero
I would  be "nothing" without you!

Donut Pans
You drive me "glazy!"

I did a donut pun a few years ago with a bag of donuts that said, "Donut" know what I would do without you!
Since this wasn't edible and I used a different pun I am saying it doesn't count as a repeat.

Nike Running Shoes
Are your "feet" tired? 
Cause you've been "running" through my mind all day!

I am very excited to start gifting these to Erik.
It makes me so happy to be able to show him some love with a little goodie for fourteen days in a row.
Also, I am a huge fan of puns...
What has been your favorite Valentine pun?

All my love,