Saturday, January 30, 2010

Handmade Craft Parties?!?

So, I have been thinking recently about hosting/sponsoring an in-home handmade craft party.   Think Mary Kay, Arbonne, Silpada, etc.  Expect all items would be handmade.  I would like to include artists from different techniques - such as paper goods and fabric(me), jewelry, clothing, art, and perhaps furniture.  

I would love to hear ya'lls thoughts, ideas, and suggestions on this topic!  Post any feedback below or email me at marian(at)perfectchancememories(dot)com.

Happy Saturday Lovelies!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Fashion Friday Home Edition

Good morning lovelies!  Today I am focusing on my plans for our dining room at our new house.  
Here it is at the inspection.  Needs pressure washing and some landscaping, but the bones are good!  We close in two months, so I have plenty of time to get all my ideas together and ready to go.
Here's part of the dining room as it is now.  The doorway you can see goes to the foyer & there is one behind the shot that goes to the kitchen.  The room is 12x12 (!), vaulted ceilings, and huge windows.  The blue is pretty, but not quite my cup of tea. So.....

it is going red! Actually, this Cherry Tomato shade from Sherwin Williams. (best paint, seriously).  I have these curtains
which are sheer and look really great when the light hits them.  (my apologies that the picture is of a bedspread, my curtains are in storage & this was the picture I found on flickr).

Now for my inspirations and wants!
dining room, looking into kitchen
I love this dining table found at Making Chicken Salad.  And the chairs, though I would need a different color - yellow perhaps?  But I adore the eclectic look going on here.  I have been searching high and low for a similar table here on the Crystal Coast.  You wouldn't think it would be so hard to find something rustic and farm like, but I haven't had any luck so far.  I hope to find one at a second hand or antique shop, I don't mind if it need a little work or is very rustic!  I need one a little bigger than this one since my room is 12x12, I am thinking one that sits 8-10 people.
Here are some more table options:
On The Table - Living History Farms
This one is perfectly rustic.
White kitchen + mod-traditional mix: Norman Cherner chairs + farm table + cottage style
I love how simple and lovely this one looks in this kitchen.
dining room, looking into kitchen
I am also thinking it will be great to get a black washed farm table and a few of these chairs from West Elm.  I just love the yellow and the flowers popping on the back.  Maybe these chairs along the side and some traditional farm chairs as anchors?

Oh, my I can't wait to start decorating! There is also a display shelf all the way around the room.  My scarlett, canary, and shamrock Fiesta Ware should look just lovely don'tcha think?

Do you have any ideas for dining room decoration you'd like to share? Post below, I'd love to hear your thought and ideas and see your pictures!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Tasty Thursday - Spaghetti!

Spaghetti!! a favorite of everyone.  This is a variation of my mom's recipe (basically I just add more veggies). Here's how I do it:

Heat 1tbsp Olive Oil in a big soup pot.

Add 1 lb lean ground hamburger (or turkey!) and brown.

While the meat is browning, chop up one large onion.
And one large green pepper.  And about 3-4 gloves of garlic (or just use minced garlic)
And carrots! This is simply for getting in extra veggies.  The carrots add no flavor to this recipe.  I do not have picky veggie eaters around here, so I just chop 'em.  If you do have picky eaters, chop 'em up finer or puree them before adding to the sauce.

When the meat is mostly brown, add the onions to the pot and cook until just soft.
then add the peppers

and the carrots and the garlic and give it all a stir or two

add two large (28 oz) cans of diced tomatoes (use no salt added so that you can control the amount of sodium in the sauce) and one small can of tomato paste.  In the summer, I substitute as many fresh tomatoes as our garden has produced, but canned works just fine also!

looking good!
add some fresh ground black pepper, salt, oregano, and lots and lots of Italian Seasoning (close to 1/4 cup) Stir it all around and let it cook for a while.  It is ready to eat once it is heated up, but I think it tastes better if you let it cook for 3-4 hours (covered on low).  Taste it after about 30 minutes to make sure it has enough salt and Italian Seasoning.
Yummy, yummy!

Craft Hope for Haiti

Check out this shop on Etsy. All proceeds go to Doctors without Borders in Haiti. As of Monday, the little shop had raised over $27,000! An amazing effort from the crafting community and something to be proud of. There are still a lot of great items in the shop, so get to shopping lovelies!

P.S. Craft Hope has a really cool blog as well - check it out:
Craft Hope Spreading seeds of hope one stitch at a time

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

the 2010 Handmade Olympics

Check out the 2010 Handmade Olympics over at the rikrak studio!  There are 8 different events, such as favorite handmade goodie for kids and favorite blog with a handmade focus.  It's a wonderful little event and I discovered quite a few new blogs to follow:)

Get to nominating lovelies!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Birthday Banner and Super Duper Cupcakes.

 Love this birthday banner I made for Chance's bday.  So cute & easy too.  I simply applied the letter cut-outs to specialty designer paper in a mix of colors & strung it all on some twine.  The walls are very colorful at Dos Taquitos, so it fit right in, but this would look great hanging in an archway, porch, or white wall as well.

And then.....and then we had these cupcakes. So delicious! Not to mention super duper cute.

Christina at Cupcake Envy is awesome and will make most whatever you want.  I ordered the mini cupcakes for the guest and the mini cakes below for the birthday boys.   Check out her site - these cupcakes are a must have for your next party!

Chance's is a mini football with the ncstate logo on the side.

Boxers & panties - half eaten!

Happy Monday lovelies!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Have a good weekend folks! We're off to Raleigh to celebrate Chance's 30th birthday with the best of friends.  See you Monday!

Friday Finds - Home Edition

Isn't this cake lovely? I have a strong desire to paint my office in our new house orange and this cake from Amy Atlas Events seen over at Cafe Cartolina is just fueling that desire.  When I look at this beauty I see orange walls, white furniture and shelves and pops of turquoise accents all over the room.  Perhaps orange & turquoise org boxes for all my supplies? A nice white cover for the futon with crisp turquoise and orange pillows? The possibilities are endless.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Tasty Thursday - A Different Green Bean Casserole

Chance doesn't like traditional green bean casserole and I can't have the cream in it, so that left me searching for a tasty alternative over the holidays.  I got the basic recipe here at Food Network, and then modified it a little.  This also is a much healthier option to the traditional and is almost as good cold as it is hot.

First, you need to toast up some almonds in butter (and salt in you prefer, I don't use salt).   Toast as many as you'd like, they make a tasty snack!

 Next, heat about 1/2 cup of Olive over medium heat in a big skillet.  I found that 1/2 cup is a little too much for my liking, so I use just a tad less.  Put in some red chilies or red pepper flakes (however much heat you like!) and about 4-5 gloves minced or chopped garlic.  Cook until the garlic turns light brown, but don't burn it.
(Excuse the green bean, I forgot to take a picture of this step before I put in the beans.)  When the garlic is light brown, put in 1/2 cup red wine vinegar.  I increased this amount from the original recipe because I like the beans to be thoroughly coated with the vinegar.  Cook down for about 5 minutes or so.  Add one pound of green beans, fresh, frozen, or canned will work.  (If you use canned, make sure you drain them first!)

 Heat, stirring occasionally to coat the beans with the dressing.  When the beans are hot, add some fried onions.
Stir it all around and allow the onions to soak up some of the dressing.  Yum!  Now top with the toasted almonds and it's ready to serve!

Platter up and enjoy!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Happy Birthday Chance

Happy 30th Birthday to my wonderful and handsome husband.  I love you very much and am so happy that I get to spend your next thirty years by your side.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Happy Holiday!

Happy MLK day everyone! I hope you take a moment today to reflect on everything Dr. King did for civil rights.

We had a great long walk with the pups on the beach in this gorgeous weather and rode our bikes to get lunch.  Can't complain about life on the island on a day like today!

I'll be back in full swing tomorrow with new things to share with you.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Happy Friday!

Have a good weekend everyone!

Next Friday I will start a weekly series on the process of decorating our new house, so stay tuned!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tasty Thursday - Roasted Potatoes

Today marks my first of a new weekly series of what's cooking in my kitchen.  This week - roasted potatoes, an all time favorite of my husbands.  Anytime he goes to the store, I can be sure that he will come home with a bag of Yukon golds and a smile.   If you are a french fry addict, this makes a healthier and tastier substitution.

You can make these for as many or as few people as you need, the only time consuming part is chopping the potatoes.  I use Yukon golds because they are my husband's favorite, but you can certainly use any type of white potato.

First, wash as many potatoes as you are wanting to cook.  I usually cook 3 or 4 medium sized potatoes for two people.  While the potatoes are rinsing, grab a beer.

Or a glass of wine.  It helps pass the time while chopping all those potatoes.
Split potatoes in half lengthwise.

Cut thin slices in one direction.

Then turn 90 degrees and cut thin slices in the other direction.

Layer the slices on a cookie sheet, sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Sprinkle the potatoes with a light coating of Olive Oil

and pepper.
Spice up your potatoes with paprika, adobo, cumin, and season salt.  Take it easy with the salt because adobo has a fair amount of salt in it.  You can always add salt before you eat them.

Bake it all at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes,  or until the potatoes are tender on the inside and crispy on the outside.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

January Goals

A few of my blogging friends do monthly goals & it seems to be a great way to get organized and make yourself stick to your goals.  Seeing how you've published them for all to see and everything.  I think 2010 is a great year for me to start this, so here goes:

January 2010 goals:
1) Get & maintain at least 30 items in Etsy store
2) Develop a plan for marketing paper goods to stores
3) Hire a painter for the new house & decide on colors
4) Make a dentist appt.
5) Join a book club or social club in EI or Morehead City
6) Do a daily blog post Monday-Friday
7) Finish product sheet for name signs
8) Run at least 4 times a week
9) Build my store on Artfire
10) Post or comment regularly on other's blogs

I'll let you know in February how I did!


I got a new camera for Christmas:) Much needed. And I'm back from a very long christmas vacation that took me from the coast to the mountains and back again with a few stops here and there.

  (btw, the tree reflected in the glare is painted on the nursery wall - it is super cute!)

And a few pics from the holidays :






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