Tuesday, March 30, 2010

life is SWEET, so eat lots of TREATS

For those of you who read my blog often, know that I have a MAJOR sweet tooth. So, please let me introduce you to my two newest obsessions!

Cake balls by Patty Cakes are heaven in a small ball. They are delicious and mouth watering! The company is based in Dallas, but you can order them online and have them shipped anywhere! Trust me, you definitely want to try these out. I have many more flavors left to try, but so far, my favorites are the strawberry and classic vanilla.

I was just introduced to Sue B Sweets yesterday at my youngest son's playgroup. Let's just say I ate poor Conrad's cookie and a few Easter bunnies after that. Sue B Sweets is located in Corpus Christi, but again, she will ship anywhere. Her prices are great as well! There is some special ingredient in these divine cookies. Amaretto maybe?? Check out her Facebook page to see her numerous designs.

The Surprise Party Was Perfect!

The surprise 70th birthday party for my Dad this past Saturday night was absolutely perfect!! He truly had no idea and was overcome with emotion. I cannot wait to share the pictures with you which will probably be in a few weeks! Thank you to everyone who sent their well wishes for a successful weekend! It truly was a night to remember.

{balloon image via style me pretty}

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Muffins & Mimosas

Invite friends and family to join you for Muffins & Mimosas! This charming party will work for a multitude of celebrations...a bridal luncheon, day of or day after wedding celebration, baby shower, birthday or even a graduation breakfast before the big event.

The party name implies what food will be served, but you can add more yummy breakfast items such as a bagels and interesting cheese spreads, assorted pastries and even an omelet or waffle station. You can serve traditional mimosas or spice things up with a make your own mimosa station. Blood Orange, Cranberry and Tangerine Mimosas are just a few of the many mimosa recipes available.

Any color palette will suit this party, but I am loving lemon yellow, marmalade orange and grey right now! Another great aspect of this party is that it can be held anywhere. An outdoor soiree in a backyard or park would be nice, but the weather does not always cooperate. You can make this party feel organic by hosting it outside or give it a more elegant vibe by having it at someone's home or even a country club.

images: tulip tablescape (theknot), fabric banner (can't remember??!), yellow heels (stylemepretty), apple flower arrangement (stylemepretty), ribbon chairs (stylemepretty), muffin basket (can't remember??!), outdoor food station (marthastewart), invitation suite (theknot)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Real Parties: Super Mario

I love when a great boy party comes my way! Tiffany sent me this creative Super Mario party she hosted for her son. You'll find lots of inspiration from this party...especially since there is not a lot out there for this theme.

Tiffany is a very talented baker (visit her cake site!), so she baked the cake herself and made the fondant accents. I really like the polka dot box she used as the cake stand!

Great find! These Wii remotes came from Walgreen's and function like Pez dispensers.
The sucker stickers say "thanks for playing" and were set in a tray filled with colorful candy.
The kids played Mario bingo.

The goody table sign.
And possibly one of the cutest aspects of the party...pictures of the kids in mustaches a la Super Mario Brothers!

See more pictures of the party HERE!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Headed to Dallas!

I'm headed to Dallas for a much needed girls weekend! I can't wait to spend time with some of my best friends and visit some of my favorite shops and restaurants. On weekends like these, I usually consume thousands of unnecessary calories. This will be sure to include many cookies (maybe multiple trips!) to JD's Chippery and a biscuit and cinnamon roll breakfast fromBubba's on Hillcrest. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

Shopping is on the agenda this weekend as well! Today we will hit up Lover's Lane which means I'll probably stop by Drip Coffee Shop and Tart Bakery for an afternoon snack! Then, tomorrow will head to Northpark with the rest of the city.

I am really looking forward to trying out a new restaurant that my friends rave about. It's called Rise and they serve gourmet souffles...isn't that such a cute restaurant name! Javier's is another Dallas favorite of mine, but I don't think we'll be visiting them this time. All this talk about delicious, fattening food is making me also want to stop by Highland Park Pharmacy for a grilled cheese! Festive Kitchen in Snider Plaza is yet another favorite of mine. Hopefully I'll make it by there to grab a few goodies to take back with me to Houston to share with my family. Their Sundried Tomato Basil Pesto Torte is amazing and we always serve that at Dallas showers!

Can you tell I'm looking forward to this trip?! I'm not going to know what to do with myself for 48 hours...KID FREE!!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Real Parties: A Vintage Circus Birthday

I ADORE this red & aqua vintage circus party that Aly put together for her son's 2nd birthday! All of the details are precious and so easy to recreate for any theme!

The red and white "table runner" was actually wrapping paper which is a fantastic idea...simple, chic and easy to clean up!

Peanuts and animal crackers were available to munch on

Aren't the elephant sandwiches cute?! Cutting sandwiches with cookie cutters in a shape that coordinates with your party theme is such an easy way to add an inexpensive, special touch. I do this often!

How great is it that Aly found popcorn bags with a touch of aqua?!

Aly created this fantastic 3 tiered lucite cake stand!

Homemade cookie favors

Of course a circus party would not be complete without pictures of people wearing clown noses. I'm sure this certainly provided lots of laughter!

Thank you for sharing this party with me, Aly!

All photography was taken by Aly, as she is a professional wedding and portrait photographer

A few party details you might be interested in...

* The red and aqua poms came from Etsy seller, Prost to the Host.
* The gorgeous cake came from Seatle-area pastry chef, Liz Slye of Crimson Cane Cakes.
* Cupcake Royale made the cupcakes.
* The straws were purchased from HEY YoYo on Etsy
* The plastic popcorn containers came from Target and the paper popcorn sacks came from HEY YoYo (same vendor for the straws).
* Aly served gourmet popcorn from Popcorn Pavillion.
* Polka dot wrapping paper was found at Paper Source

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Real Parties: A Marie Antoinette Party by Kate Landers Events!

Decadence is the word that comes to mind when I see these pictures! Boston-based childrens' event planner, Kate Landers, orchestrated this amazing Marie Antoinette tea party for a group of young girls. But the party can easily be turned into an event for the young-at-heart as well!

The color of these jewels portray the color scheme perfectly - pale peach, soft blush, ice pink, candy pink, fuchsia, raspberry and a splash of light aqua.

These stunning "rococo" hats were HANDMADE by Kate!

Original party activities included making necklaces with gorgeous faux jewels and creating masks to be worn at their "Masquerade Ball". They also played croquette and had their hair and makeup done...corn starch was put in their hair (if they wanted it) to resemble the white wigs of the time!

I adore all of the feminine details of this party! Be sure to read Kate's original post for MANY more beautiful pictures and to learn about more party details.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Great Girlie Party Favors!

Melanie from Scout, A Mom's Guide to Stylish Living (whose blog I LOVE & read daily!) is now designing the cutest bows...and you can buy them as party favor packs to match your party theme! This is such a great idea and a very special treat for the young ladies!
The pink and red bows above were made for an Olivia themed birthday and the following bows were created for the ever-so-popular cupcake theme.

Melanie is one stylish and talented momma and I know her bows will sell well! The prices are great and if you order 10 or more, she will throw in a special bow for the birthday girl at no charge!

Visit Melanie HERE or contact her at melbellesbows@gmail.com

Friday, March 12, 2010

{Recipes} Chocolate Pistachio Cake ~ Perfect for St. Patrick's Day!

I apologize for the lack of posts this week! We have been busy, busy over here and the weekend is just beginning. We're headed to our ranch and good friends are coming along. But I did not want to leave you with just one post for the week! Here is one of my favorite cakes that my mom used to make for me and her mom made for her. It is perfect for St. Patrick's Day AND it's simple too! Enjoy!

Chocolate Pistachio Cake

* 1 package yellow cake mix
* 1 small package pistachio instant pudding
* 4 eggs
* 1 cup water
* 1/2 cup oil
* 1/2 tsp almond extract
* 1/4 cup chocolate syrup...sometimes I add a little more
* 1/4 cup powder sugar

* Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a Bundt pan (Pam will work just fine).
* In a large mixing bowl, combine yellow cake mix with pistachio pudding. Add eggs, water, oil and extract and beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.
* Put 1/3 of the batter in a small mixing bowl and mix with 1/4 cup of chocolate syrup.
* Pour the two batters into the pan, alternating the yellow and chocolate. Swirl a little of the chocolate into the yellow with a spatula.
* Bake 50-55 minutes; be sure not to undercook. Cool 15 minutes before removing from pan and cool on a wire rack.
* Cool completely and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

{cake images via Bakerella}

This cake is DELICIOUS and moist and stays that way for longer than usual! I would love to know if you decide to bake this!

Have a wonderful weekend and I will be back next week with lots of great real parties!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Real Parties: ROYGBIV

This has got to be one of the most creative parties that I have ever seen! This party is brought to you by Lullaby Lubbock, a blog written by 2 friends of mine who happen to throw VERY unique parties.
Allison's dream is to one day own a candy store and call it roy.g.biv...which would be a candy store by colors. In her words, "If you don't want to eat around the yellows and greens in a bag of sour patch kids, then my store would be the place to come!". So, you can start to see why this surprise party theme was near and dear to her.

Allison's day started with a scavenger hunt. Each clue given to her came with a balloon that in the end made up all of the colors of the rainbow...ROY.G.BIV!!! At the end of the hunt, she was given a tie dye shirt with all of the roy.g.biv colors. I just love all of those details!

The party took place at a skating rink for all of the party guests who are still young at heart.

See their "party heart-y" party which was recently featured on Party Perfect!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Real Parties: Party Like a Rockstar

I have another great boy party to share with you sent to me by Laurie! As I've mentioned before, I am a sucker for houndstooth, so my eye was automatically drawn to these pictures and the party details!
The vases came from the Dollar Tree and Laurie glued houndstooth ribbon to each vase and filled them with Kiss M&M's that she found at Walmart! Houndstooth wrapping paper from Hobby Lobby was used as table runners.

I love this wording!

Laurie used candy molds to make the #1's and she wrapped foam blocks in wrapping paper.

The party was filed with activities. Little party guests walked on a red carpet, decorated guitars from Michael's and there was even a tattoo shop!

To see more pictures from this fun party, visit Girl Outnumbered.

A few party details you might be interested in...

* The houndstooth wrapping paper came from Hobby Lobby.
* Laurie found the KISS M&M's from Walmart which I think was a perfect addition!
* Cupcakes & Cutlery provided the graphics and served as inspiration.
* The candy molds were purchased from Candy Mold Central.
* The red chalkboards were found at Kirkland's.
* The rockstar cake was created by Vicky's Cakes.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Pure Genius: Up Party Inspiration

I mean seriously! Could Bakerella be any more creative?! These are PERFECT for an Up party or you can serve them as dessert this Sunday while watching the Oscars!

Visit Bakerella for the EASY directions...

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Very Chic Twilight Inspired Wedding

Ok, I'm embarrassed to admit this, but I am a newly crazed Twilight fan. In the past, I rolled my eyes when I heard stories of people reading the LONG novels in hours and standing in ridiculously long lines to see the movies. But alas, I finally saw Twilight and New Moon and I was hooked! I rushed home, borrowed book 3 and 4 and finished them in about a week. Yes, I have turned into one of those people. Anyway...when I stumbled across this gorgeous photo shoot, my jaw dropped. The details and creativity are stunning and I can't believe it was inspired by the wedding in Breaking Dawn (did I just ruin the book for someone?!). I'm so used to seeing gothic Twilight parties and this was very refreshing to see...much more my style.

You cannot see it well on this picture, but the ribbon on the bouquet reads, "so the lion fell in love with the lamb". I feel incredibly cheesy saying this, but how sweet and creative is that?!

Sweet and Saucy contributed to this gorgeous photo shoot and that is where I found the pictures. You have GOT to see their write up on the event. My words will not do it justice. Read on to learn about the details and to see a lot more eye candy which can serve for inspiration for many types of events! I love how the event planners took the iconic apple from the original cover and ran with it in a stylish way...apple place cards, hot apple cider and a painted apple on the cake.