Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The perfect camera bag: Functional and Stylish!

Image from Ketti Handbangs

I take my camera everywhere with me now.  I never know when I will see something that I have to take a picture of.  

The one thing that absolutely drives me insane is the fact that I look like a tourist everywhere I go.  

I am determined to find a camera bag that is stylish, but also protects my camera from everything else I carry with me.  
In my search for the perfect camera bag, here are my favorites:

1. The Lola (in Black) from Epiphane  $164.99

2. The Rose (in Marigold) from Jo Totes   $89

3. The Libby bag (in distressed gray) from Kelly Moore

 4. The Classic Canvas Tote from Emera   $169

 5.  The Chevron by Ketti handbags   $195

Now, a decision has to be made.

So excited that I will soon look like a resident rather than a traveler.
A stylish one at that : )

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Fabulous Food: The BEST Cookie...bold claim I know

So, I know what you are thinking..."The BEST?  Yeah, right."  To which, I have to say "You have to try them!".  You may end up agreeing with me.  

Have you ever wondered... if you were to make the perfect cookie...what would be in it? Well, that thought is what inspired me to make this cookie.  I took a very good and simple cookie mix and added all of my favorite indulgences to make MY perfect cookie.

One of the things I love about this recipe is that it is so easy.  There is no sifting...or even measuring.  

The recipe begins with a bag of Betty Crocker Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookie mix. 

Melt 1 stick of unsalted butter.  (The directions on the package say to soften the butter, but my recipe works better with the butter melted).  Once the butter has cooled a bit, add one egg to the butter.  Mix it with a fork until well blended. 

 Pour the cookie mix into the butter mixture and stir until the cookie batter looks like...


 Here is the part of the recipe that is absolutely indulgent. 

Add 1/2 cup of pecans...

  1/2 cup of Heath Bits of Brickle...

 ...and 1/2 cup of sweetened flaked coconut.

You can change the measurements of these three ingredients to more or less if you would like.

Now, this is the part where the melted butter helps out.  It is going to seem impossible to mix all of those ingredients in this all ready dry batter, but you will have to stir...and stir...and stir...until you think your arm is going to fall off.

Eventually the batter will look like this...

 Use a tablespoon to scoop the batter onto the pre-greased baking pan.  (Again, the directions on the cookie mix package say to use an un-greased pan, but the extra ingredients have taken away all of the extra butter in the mix.  If you do not spray the pan, the cookies will stick).

Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes. 

I have to tell you...they are heaven. 

Every time I have baked these cookies, they are gone within minutes - with more than me eating them : )

I have given them as gifts and actually baked them for a fundraiser raffle.  No one has to know how easy they are, but everyone will know how good they are.  

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Friday, February 24, 2012

The Friday Five...

Appreciating an art form rarely pursued after life-drawing class...

Listening to Jason play my grandfather's guitar...

Finding the palette my teacher gave me in high school...

Finding the perfect drawer pulls for my next project...

Loving my new notebook.  I find lists a lot easier to accomplish when written down in books that I love to look at : )

Usually my five includes only images, but...I had to add this song to the mix.  Theme song for the week. Love it.  Can pick me up out of any funk. 

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

What I love right now...

It's that time of year when the Spring home collections are being unveiled.  

Usually, the weather is cold enough that I am not quite ready to think about planting flowers and cutting the grass, but this year is different.  Today it was 68 degrees...absolutely beautiful...and all I could do was think about how I wanted to change everything in my house to fit the light and bright feeling I had.  

Thankfully, for my bank account, I am not a seasonal decorator.  But...if I are a few of the things I would indulge in.

From Pottery Barn...

1. Terrariums - $129-$249
2. Clara Apartment Sofa - $1399
3. Feather Topped Bottles (s/3) - $69
4. Juice De Fruits Glass (s/6) - $33
5. Tall Wire Bird Cage - $199
6. French Wire Hamper with Liner - $149

From Wisteria...

1. Antiqued Art Deco Coffee Table - $649
2. Framed 19th Century Music Sheet - $229
3.  Rustic Trestle Console - $1299
4. Louis XVI End Chair - $429
5. Wooden Spice Boxes - $89
6. Crosshair Hide Bench - $649

From Mothology...

1. Set of Wood Trunks covered in Distressed Metal Sheeting - $395
2. Vintage Inspired Hotel Key Rack - $62
3. Pine Potting Table - $398
4. French Caned Armchair - $1937.50
5. Hanging Wire and Glass Votive - $12.95
6. Metal Praque Chair - $235

From Napa Style...

1. Vintage Flower Tables - $649-$1999
2. Pasticcino Flower Bottles  (s/2) - $29
3. Gilded Cupcake Stands - $49
4. Vintage European Bathtub Planter - $299
5. Vagabond Vintage Suitcase Table- $199
6. Barrel Stave Hammock - $499

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

DIY: Cute and Customized bags

I found these cashmere felt bags and instantly fell in love...for a few reasons.

  1. They are made of 100% post consumer recycled fibers
  2. They are Cashmere-touch felt
  3.  They can be customized to fit any mood

 The large bag was


 the clutch was


and the small checkbook purse was


Who can beat that?

When I saw them, I couldn't help but think that I could use all of the different sizes at different times, but could they work for both casual and dressy occasions?  Could they be used at work and for dinner after work?

I thought one of the easiest ways to change the look of these bags, was to use hair-bows. I found the bags and all of these ready made hair-bows at Hobby Lobby.  

 Here are some of the looks you could do for work:

 If you are going from work, to dinner, you could always add a couple more bows...maybe with a pop of color.

 Or the bags could be dressed down and made more for a teenager.

 The possibilities are endless.   

 I love the black and beige on the grey background.

A lot of hair-bows already have a pin attached to the back, but if they don't, you can sew one on very quickly and easily. 

What woman couldn't use more purses?  For less than twenty dollars, you can have a cute bag that can change with your mood.  Can't beat that : )

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