When I was a little girl my dad woke me up before dawn one day for one of my most memorable childhood experiences. I had no idea what he was up to, but I could tell he was excited to share something special. After a short drive, we were surrounded by the hustle and bustle of a real life circus train unloading before my eyes.
We huddled on steel bleachers in the fog of this cool morning, and watched as elephants lumbered down ramps, where they gathered in a large dirt parking lot. They made their way across the street, trunks holding tails, where they helped to raise the large circus tent I’d find myself inside two nights later, beaming with excitement while munching on popcorn.
For my cousin’s baby shower, her first boy, I wanted to recreate those childlike feelings of anticipation that rise within me whenever I think about my first circus.
A nudge from a friend and her offer to co-host the shower was just the spark needed to start the fire of preparation. Enjoy the look around the event!
What feelings do you like to conjure for your gatherings?
Photos: upper) assorted cupcakes & gold giraffe; lower: 1) wax paper cups with cupcake liners, flavored popcorn; 2) homespun fabric pennants on jute twine, washi tape flags on sticks; 3) mini succulents wrapped by paper tickets, washi tape “thank you” flags on toothpicks, chevron paper gift bags to-go; 4) momma & party straws for mimosas and juice; 5) guests paint blocks for baby instead of games.
I needed another cookbook like I needed a hole in my head, or so I thought. But Mother does know best and I’m so glad she picked this one up for me.
Salads, when made well, really are a luxurious experience. With produce boxes arriving weekly from my CSA, largely stuffed with many varieties of greens, I had to find a way to change it up a bit from the sliced carrot, walnuts and parm that usually top the side salad at any given meal around my house.
Enter, Salad for Dinner, by Jeanne Kelley. (insert heavenly epiphany sound here please)
This book actually makes me want a salad… for dinner. Shock and awe!
Beside focusing on salads by categories such as vegetarian, fish & seafood, poultry and meat, it also includes a powerful and straightforward primer on everything from which types of greens to use when and how to perfect proportions of your favorite toppings. So you avoid that embarrassing too-much-bleu-cheese thing (you all know what I’m talking about).
I do wish that every one of these amazing salads had a photo which isn’t the case, but I do understand photos make production quite expensive, so I’ll overlook it. Also, most if not all of the recipes employ fairly common ingredients, so simply reading the recipe usually gets my mouth to watering.
What’s in your local CSA boxes this time of year and what killer salad topping combos do you go-to? (Um, hello below – Everything is better with an egg right?!)
Need a quickie gift idea? A craft for one of the under 4-foot-and-under set?
Grab any frame with a smooth edge (beveled doesn’t work so well) and your washi tapes and get to work. No messy glue and a sleeker look than decoupage ever gave.
I was initially inspired by a pin showing an entire table covered with stripes of Washi tape in multiple colors. It gave sort of a butcher block look but in fun colors instead of shades of wood. I instantly knew this would be fun on a frame as well!
I tried covering the frame in a few different ways—in one place, just the corners, all over… but eventually landed on two accents being the most fun. However, for a kid’s room or a shower gift it might be fun to go all the way around. I also think if I’d have stuck with tapes all in one family of color, dropping the turquoise from the mix, it would have looked less circus-y when I went all the way around. Plus, change your mind like I did, and it peels right back off!
PS) Cute whale art by blackcottagehandmade.com
Most days just call for something simple and pretty. This just came together for me on a whim and I had to share.
So we all know I have a penchant for Russell + Hazel binders, organizers and their mini datebook. The other day I was gazing at my google calendar, the bright bars that pepper my every day, and wishing I had a calendar that was of a higher-level view, so I could see the ebb and flow of projects, understand when I was likely to be swamped, and when I could say yes to small single-day projects to keep my creative energy up.
So I combined two of my faves, the Russell + Hazel mini date book with washi tapes! Hooray!
I mark multi-day projects with various colored tapes and write over them to label. Now I smile when I look at my month-in-view and can’t help but get excited rather than overwhelmed by what is coming up next!