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Birthday Weekend via Instagram

No Freebie Friday last week, and no Polyvore Monday today. Why you ask? More important things to do.

Like celebrating half a century.

Thanks to epic timing on my parent’s part, my birthday often falls on a 3-day weekend, and this year was no exception. Here’s a few snapshots of what our weekend looked like:

1. I think macaroons are my new favorite.

2. Obviously anything wrapped in this will be adorable.

3. Little ones make blowing out 25 candles way easier.

4. Did I mention I love macaroons?

5. The first birthday text I received…from Switzerland! My parents are celebrating 40 years of marriage this August, and are traveling for a few weeks. They just so happened to be in the Alps, headed to Paris on my birthday. Nice. Real nice.

“Bring me back something French!” (what movie?)

6. The most amazing | vacuum | ever. If someone had told me 2 years ago that’d be my favorite present, I would’ve laughed in there face. My, how times have changed.

7. Anthro | tea towel | Love.

8. The perks of having an amazing boss.

9. An early morning birthday walk with Gooser.

10. | Pretzel Nuggets | Have you guys tried these? I think I ate about 3/4 of the container this weekend. Thank you World Market.

11. An adorable | notepad | from my friend, Brittany. I will seriously use this every time I go to the store.

12. Anthro | candle | Thank you, sister!

13. This is how late Goose let us sleep in Monday morning, praise the Lord! But literally, 2 seconds after I took a screen shot of that, she started barking. God bless her.

14. Homemade, fresh squeezed, peach lemonade, 21 and over style. Does anything kick off summer better than that? Clearly, they must be drunk out of a mason jar.

15. Finally got a few pictures in my very favorite | frames |

More importantly than my birthday, though, is the reason why we get a 3-day weekend. The brave men and women who have selflessly fought for our country so that we can enjoy our freedom.

Thank you is not enough. We are forever grateful to both you, and your families.


Baby Shower Bunting

One decoration I knew I wanted for my sister-in-law’s baby shower was to make a gift that would double as decor at the party itself…along came bunting with baby girl’s name right on it! The project ended up being way easier than I was anticipating, partly because I cut a few corners along the way and partly because baby’s name is short and oh so sweet:

Ella. Ella Jean.

To begin, I decided I would use the same | method | I do for my burp cloths and onesies.
>> Not pictured, but adhere double sided ‘steam-a-seam’ to the fabric of your choice by ironing onto the wrong side of your fabric <<
Next, I used some chipboard letters I had lying around and traced Ella’s name onto the steam-a-seam, backwards. It’s important you do them backwards, otherwise when you go to cut them out, you’ll have letters that face the wrong direction.

You’ll also want to cut out enough triangles for every letter, and make sure they’re big enough to fit each. This size will vary depending on how big the letters are you’re using. I ended up cutting an extra so that I could put a flower between the first and middle names, and I also cut 18 triangles, so each of mine would have a front and a back (although it didn’t end up being necessary).

Here’s what my letters looked like cut out:

Next, I removed the back layer of the steam-a-seam and stuck the letters where I wanted the on the triangle pieces, then ironed to make them stay in place so sewing them would be easier.

Pin front and back triangles together and sew along the 2 sides (there’s no reason to sew along the top because your ric-rac will go there and cover any stitch you would put there.

I decided to use a fun, slightly oversized zigzag stitch on mine and I love the way it turned out:

Next I laid them all out next to each other and pinned the ric-rac in place.

Sew along top edge, as close to the center of the ric-rac as possible so that you don’t have to zigzag back and forth.

Done! Hang up, enjoy, and patiently wait for baby Ella to make her debut.

The bunting was part of her gift, and the other part was this fun little suitcase I found at a local craft store, filled with 3 homemade | burp cloths | and 1 appliquéd onesie. A simple, inexpensive gift made with love.

A few notes about this project:
– if I were to do it again, I would’ve stitched along the edge of the triangles first and then sewed the letters on to make sure things were more centered.
– originally, I had wanted to stitch over each letter in a contrasting thread, which is why I had a front and a back to each triangle. After 1 letter I decided it wasn’t worth it because it was really hard to sew around such a teeny tiny letter.
– I just left my edges raw because I like the way it looks, but you could finish the bunting by sewing, turning inside out and adhering appliqué, then doing a fun stitch that would show.

A Birthday & Anthro-Inspired Place Card Holders

First off, I have to start by saying happy birthday to my amazing husband. Today marks his 25th year and yes, I did send him on a scavenger hunt this morning before work to find his gift. I could go on and on about how incredible he is, but I’ll save you the time and mushy-gushy details about how much I love him and how blessed I am to call him my husband.

In other news…

Not long ago, I was at Anthropologie and spotted a super-creative display that I wanted to try to recreate at some point. I took a photo of it and it got somewhat forgotten, along with the other gazillion images on my phone.

*On a side note, I’m pretty sure that about 98% of the time I spend in Anthropologie is spent gawking at their many displays and wishing I could somehow incorporate each one into our own home.

As I started to prepare for the baby shower I threw this weekend for Ian’s sister, I came across that picture on my phone and realized they would be perfect as food card holders for the buffet table.

I went to our local True Value (they literally have everything you could ever need), and showed the guy the picture. I think he called it field fence (?) and luckily, they sell it on a roll by the foot.

I knew I didn’t need much of it, and the roll he cut it off of was already 2 feet wide, so I just had him cut 1 foot off the roll for me.

I referred back to my picture, and didn’t want them to be too big, so I snipped my wire at 15 squares all the way up the length of it.

I was left with something that looks like this:

…And I’m just warning you now, those edges are so so sharp!

I went back and re-trimmed mine as close to the edge as possible, so they looked more like this:

And then our table was covered in these little pieces:

I counted 10 squares up, folded at the 11th, and then did 10 more squares going down the back, but you can easily customize this part if you know you want to make a bigger or smaller one.

Next I stamped onto a thick piece of cardstock each of our food items, as well as a “Wishes for Baby Ella” station…more on that later.

Adhere to your wire using hot glue (you only need a few, small dots of it), and add any embellishments you want.

Ta da! A simple and reusable food card holder to let guests know what’s on the menu.

I’m trying to think of other projects I could use the remaining pieces for.


Polyvore Monday | May 21

Did anyone else see Keeping up with the Kardashian’s last night (I know, I know, major guilty pleasure show), where they have a couch in their master bathroom? A couch people! How amazing (and slightly unnecessary) is that?

I guess you could say the Kardashian’s inspired Polyvore Monday today and it wasn’t a total waste of an hour of my life.

What women doesn’t love an over-the-top, luxurious master bathroom? I think along with a huge walk-in closet, it’s right up there on the list of top things women want/look for in a home. Fact: Whenever Ian and I are planning a vacation, I always look up the hotel on | Trip Advisor | and search for photos of the bathroom (I could care less about the actual bedroom part). I have no idea why, but a luxurious bathroom + vacation = a little slice of heaven for me, and I have to make sure the bathroom’s up to par! Plus, when it’s not yours, you don’t have to clean it yourself. Bonus!

Thanks to | Houzz | I can drool over beautiful master baths 24/7 and never run out of ideas. Here’s a few favorites from my ideabook:

Italianate Townhouse traditional bathroom
traditional bathroom design by new york architect Linda Yowell Architects

I am  in love with this subway tile. Retro, yet still feels modern and so clean.

Reaume Construction & Design traditional bathroom
traditional bathroom design by los angeles general contractor Reaume Construction & Design
Donna DuFresne Design eclectic bathroom
eclectic bathroom design by portland interior designer Donna DuFresne Interior Design

A little nook to bathe in is so fun and just what every home needs. Do we love that arch or what? Who wouldn’t want to spend hours soaking in that bathtub until you turn into a prune. I’m a big fan of the detailed ceiling as well. Feels slightly like a beach cottage, but a warm, cozy beach cottage. The bead board along the walls and below the tub in the second photo give it the feeling of an older home and the contrast between the tub, bead board, and wall color are also great.

Master Bath Retreat traditional bathroom
traditional bathroom design by seattle kitchen and bath Kayron Brewer, CKD / Studio KB

Umm…yes please! Does this even need an explanation? This many built-ins are absolutely necessary for a bathroom (I hate when clutter is left on the counter), and such a great way to hide it all, but still keep it accessible and at eye-level when you need it.

1512 Dolphin Terrace traditional bathroom
traditional bathroom design by orange county design-build Spinnaker Development

White marble. Need I say more?

Small Space Bathroom contemporary bathroom
contemporary bathroom design by toronto interior designer Toronto Interior Design Group

I’ve never understood how showers like this don’t cause a flood in the bathroom (and how that towel would manage to stay dry), but I still like them! Little privacy with only half of a glass door, but when it’s in the master bath, who cares! Cutouts in the shower wall that create shelves are perfect for storing pretty bottles, and a good use of space in a small bathroom.

To the 2 of you (I’m new to the blogging world, 2 is better than none!) who commented on Freebie Friday, you each get a card! Please e-mail me at | | with your address and I’ll get them shipped out to you ASAP!

Make sure to come back this week for tutorials from the baby shower this weekend, I promise you won’t want to miss them (and they’re EASY DIY projects!)

Freebie (Literally) Friday | May 18

Today’s Freebie Friday is really, truly an actual freebie. My first one as a matter of fact, and I know it’s not anything special, but I think it’s pretty darn cute. A simple, hand-stamped birthday card complete with Washi tape.

To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post, no need to even be a follower! Winner will be drawn using that random number generator I see popping up on everyone else’s giveaways (I’ll try and figure out how that works).

In the meantime, enjoy your weekend and I’ll be back Monday with the winner.

I’m throwing a baby shower for Ian’s sister this weekend, so come back next week for at least 2 tutorials, a couple freebies, and baby shower photos galore.

Happy weekend, all!