Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Rudolf For a CURE!

As Santa says to Rudolph~ Rudolph with your nose so bright won't you guide my sleigh tonight, am asking "Rudolph with your nose so PINK won't you give us a CURE tonight?!" As I was baking cookies today decided I would make a cookie to promote the CURE during Christmas!  

On Tuesday, December 20, 2011 our old friend Lisa Giardetti Schmalbach passed away after a two year battle of breast cancer at the young age of 38 years old.  Her fight against this devil was so notable & her cause for fighting so hard, her 2 young boys of 13 & 10 is something that I will never forget as long as I live.  I feel very fortunate enough to have reconnected with Lisa this past year.   She gave me some of the most powerful and memorable life advice that will vowel to do my best to live by for as long as i live.  She touched so many and we were all privileged to be apart of her journey because of Lisa's best friend Kris, and she provided me with yet another life lesson in all of this.  Kris has to be one of the most loyal & inspiring friends that have ever witnessed.  You couldn't even write a book to describe the passion and support that she gave to Lisa. Both extraordinary woman that I am proud to be acquainted for so many wonderful reasons, I do wish that I had reconnected with them both sooner.  My heart breaks for Kris having lost her best friend at such a young age, along with the heaviest heart for Lisa's boys and family.  

In addition to Lisa, another one of our friends was diagnosed this year with breast cancer and has forged forward through her battle like none that I have ever seen.  She is doing amazing and has through her journey, has had such courage and grace to fight as well is honorable.  They both are a remarkable inspiration to us all we are blessed to have them in our lives. 

With that, please pray for our Lord to gift someone the graces to find a cure for this awful dicease.  Perhaps Santa & Jesus can add it to someones presents under their tree.  It's here the cure I know it, we need to pray harder for it.  Seeing & believing this holiday season is the new black ;)  therefore here is my Rudolf and his new look~  a pink nose & black antlers!

For Lisa, Jen & all the people that are effected by this devil we know as cancer. God Bless!

To read more of Lisa's story you can find read here~

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Merry Sweets DIY Banner

Merry Merry!  That has been jingling in my head since attending the Starbucks Holiday Party designed by Hostess with the Mostess last month.

With that being said I had the opportunity to create things for an island in a kitchen last weekend for The Garden Girls at one of the homes on the Chestnut Hill Holiday House Tour and used the theme "Merry Sweets".  
I, like many others try to do lots of DIY for Christmas decor.

I want to share with you a quick tutorial on the glitter banner I made.   If you know me I always tend to use Martha Stewart brand for crafting.  find that from paint to stickers and ribbon the quality of the product is better then most.  This month in the Martha Stewart Living magazine they had great coupons to buy her paints and crafts from Michaels and I took advantage with the savings can't wait to share out project with the paints I bought! !  

Here is what you need~ burlap from a fabric store to cut triangles with, glitter glue, glitter and letters.  bought my letters at Michaels for $1.00, ribbon, jingle bells & a glue gun.  

The letters I bought were pre-made glittered. 
Take one letter and triangle at a time 
paint the back of the letter with glue and press it onto a burlap triangle.

Hold the triangle over a bowl and pour the glitter onto the glue
 and shake off the access.  
Let the glitter dry.  
To assemble, I used a pencil to make little holes in the burlap and 
used thin ribbon to secure the 2 together.  Then tied two more pieces to that ribbon.  

Here's a cute photo of my 2 year old getting caught trying to sneak a candy cane when i was taking photo's of the banner.  She is so cute, love to see her little hand pop into a picture!

Merry Merry!  More to come soon with the Merry Sweets island later this week!  

Peace, Love & Merry Sweets,


Monday, November 28, 2011

Nutella Pie Cookies ~

Nutella Pie Cookies with Heath Bar Crunch & Pecans ~

Do you have any pie crusts left over from Thanksgiving last weekend?  Are you looking for a simple and easy yet ever so scrumptious treat? All you need is:

A love for Nutella
two ready made pie crusts I use Pillsbury brand
Pecans pieces
Heath Bar Crunch Toffee pieces. 

Thaw out your pie crust as directed on the package.  Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.  Roll out the bottom pie crust on a piece of parchment paper.  Spread the Nutella leaving about 1/2 inch to the edge.  Sprinkle with pecan piece and Heath Bar Crunch Toffee pieces. 

Unroll the top pie crust place carefully on top of the bottom piece and seal the edges with a fork.  Brush a tablespoon or a bit more of milk on the top and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.

Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the top is crisp and golden brown.  Remove from the oven let cool for a few minutes and cut into pie slices or smaller cookie pieces.  Sprinkle confectioners sugar on top and serve! 

Peace, Love & Nutella Pie Cookies, 


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Nothing says the Holiday season is almost here like Starbucks & Hostess with the Mostess

Nothing says the Holiday Season is almost here like Starbucks & Hostess with the Mostess well that & Starbucks signature holiday cup and drinks! 

Last Tuesday I had the pleasure of attending with 9 other winners from the Hostesss with the Mostess blog the Starbuck Holiday kick-off party in NYC at the Gramercy Park Hotel (which I totally fell In love with btw & can't wait to go back during the holidays) .  It was an amazing event with not a detail missed by Jenn & her team.  From the venue to the stylish and oh so creative décor, to the coffee, cocoa & sweets from Starbucks the evening was top notch. 

Before I share some photo’s that I took, I need to mention the “fabtastic”(new word that I learned that night) night out I had with my oldest daughter Haley who is 12.  She was my +1 that night, and I surprised her when she came home from school to get her "homework done and get dressed in this we are taking the train into NYC for a Starbucks party!"  “Mom are you serious or are you just messing around….what about practice?  we are really going….wow my friends are never going to believe me, I am so glad you are lunch Mom tomorrow to tell them…I’m so excited, Let's get our Starbuck's ON!!!!” And off we went, we had a blast, lots of laughs and special time together, nothing that I will ever take for granted or forget.  You get or at least I get very busy and forget how important one on one time is with your kids especially a growing 12 year old.  Okay so onto the party~

As I had mentioned I was so impressed with the creative décor it was definitely what was needed to kick off the Holiday season and HWTM certainly Decked the Halls…….

Here was the invite from the HWTM blog the day before!  So Festive!!  

 I really loved all of the details but particularly this tree made from am guessing manzanita branches or coral or both!   Jenn will be sharing lots of details and how-to's soon on her blog so we'll have to wait and read!  

Pretty glittery bird ornaments~ 

This is my daughter getting her "Merry" on.....

Some shots of the dessert table~ 

My 2nd favorite element the simple hanging flowers~ 

The table setting~ 

Haley's favorite place the Cake Pop station.  Did you know that Starbucks has Cake Pop kits?  They do & they are perfect activity for a snowy winter day or at your holiday party! 

That's all I have to share!  Honestly I was very busy enjoying a scrumptious cocktail the Viatini their signature drink of the evening.  All and all the night was so festive, fun, and memorable for my daughter and I, thank you Jenn & Amber of HWTM & Starbucks

What was your favorite detail from my pictures? And.....   
Be sure to click on the Starbucks link!  
There's a sweet merry treat for us all from 
November 17th-20th 
hint: click on the video on the home page) 

Peace, Love & Let's Merry~


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Two weeks~ Blessed & Grateful

Last year I had hosted my first Thanksgiving Dinner at our home. 
 We enjoyed it very much & wanted to share with you the simple yet elegant(if I don't say) table setting and other decor...........
I chose to make a simple banner with the words 
"Blessed & Grateful" because that is what I truly am! 

Seasonal Decor

Large hurricane filled with nuts and pine cones, 
inside a smaller glass container to hold the sticks

Place setting with our menu and a pear 

My favorite part was the cornucopia filled with fresh greens, apples and orange roses

Greens aren't just for Christmas Season, 
add fall colors for a perfect Thanksgiving arrangement

Very simple "kids" table~ printed off some coloring pages as an activity while we ate (can you see they got to the table before I took the photo ;))

Our First Turkey!  With lots of help from my Mom! 

Desserts~ Apple & Pumpkin Pies & Chocolate Covered  Oreo's

How about you?  Do you host or travel to your family for Thanksgiving?  What is you favorite part about Thanksgiving?  

Peace, Love & Gratitude,


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Decorate it yourself cakes with custom Fondant Pieces!

In the last year I have had the opportunity to create custom fondant pieces for some very colorful and creative parties!  Just want to share some of the photos! 

Buying a professionally decorated cake from a bakery is not cheap.  But baking a cake yourself, with your little ones or buying an undecorated simply iced cake from your store and adding your own fondant pieces most certainly is affordable and FUN! 

2nd Birthday cake for a Berry Harvest Theme store bought cake at Wegman's. 
Match this invitation 

Flower Fondant pieces for Project Nursery at the Plush Event

Polka Dot & Posie Cake for a 4th birthday
Elephant & polka dots for a baby shower as seen on Hostess with the Mostess
Matching invitation~

Barbie silhouette and a flowers for a fun tween! 
My 12 yr old's cookie cake that she designed & decorated!
Store bought cake before 
One of my favorites!! Designed & Decorated by Fresh Chick Designs 
Matching invitation ~

Like to make a statement with your cake?  This is certainly an affordable way to do it! 
Check back soon for more photos of decorate it yourself cakes!  

Peace, Love & Fab DIY Mom Cakes,


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Zucchini Nutella Blueberry Bread

My favorite summer bread that I have made numerous times this summer!  Easy treat to bake to give as a hostess gift for your Labor Day BBQ!

Zucchini Nutella Blueberry Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon coarse salt

1 ½ cups sugar

3 room eggs temperature
4 oz container plain applesauce
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups freshly grated zucchini (2 small zucchini or 1 large approximately)
1 cup blueberries

1. Preheat oven 350
2. Spray your loaf pan wth non stick baking spray
3. In a bowl put the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and carefully mix ingredients with a dry whisk.
4. In a separate bowl mix together eggs, oil, applesauce, sugar, zucchini and vanilla until very well combined.
5.Gently pour flour mixture into egg mixture and combine by foldng & give a good blend at the end.
6. Take the blueberries with a bit of flour and gently toss (this helps them from falling to the bottom of the batter) and gently fold them into the batter.

Pour the batter into the baking pan. Then drop 3 dollops of Nutella onto the top of the batter and gently with a knife spread through the batter, as the picture shows

Bake for 45-55 before removing from oven test with a toothpick and make sure it comes out clean or alteast dry from the ingrediants not the Nutella.

Enjoy the treat!  I have shared this bread with many this summer & everyone love t and s very surprised to find it isn’t made with butter! 

Peace, Love & Nutella Zucc Bread,