Friday, March 29, 2013

Happy Easter!

In the midst of the busy-ness and preparations (both physical and spiritual) of Holy Week, I wanted to take a quick moment to wish you a blessed Easter.

We are hosting our family for Easter lunch, so I am up to my eyeballs in cleaning, menu-planning, cooking, and shopping. But I love doing it all because I know it will culminate in a joyful celebration of our Savior's resurrection.


These pictures of the kids from last year crack me up. I don't even know where they got the ears, but they wore them the whole day {minus church!}.

May the hope and joy of Easter touch every moment of your year.
Have a wonderful Easter!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What I Wore During the Winter That Never Ends

Welcome to What I Wore Wednesday.
This special edition chronicles my continuing battle to usher some spring into the winter wardrobe which nature won't let me put away. 
Easter is just days away, but the weather still feels like Christmas. So I've resorted to incorporating  color into my outfits for an extra pop of springtime. 

Top: Boden, Scarf, Flats: Target, Pin: The Pleated Poppy

Cardi, Tee: Target, Jeans: Silver, Shoes: El Naturalista

 Everything: Target

Dress: Lands End, Scarf: Dress Barn, Boots: Naturalizer

Cardi: Gap, Pins: The Pleated Poppy, Tee: Target

Sweater: Lands End, Scarf: Dress Barn, Shoes: Target

I hardly ever wear my hair straight, but did so on a whim today....
Whaddya think? Should I stick with my usual big hair, or go with the straight version now and then?

I'm linking up at The Pleated Poppy.
pleated poppy

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Friday Photo Dump

It's InstaFriday time over at Life Rearranged and I'm joining in the fun. I haven't uploaded the photos from my phone in several weeks. Viewing them en masse has revealed an interesting pattern. I am beginning to see a three-pronged theme in my life: 
1. Kids/animals
2. Food
 3. Complaining about Discussing the weather.


I would like to believe I am more interesting than that, but the pictures don't lie.
Check it:

The dog.

The cat. And the Cait.

 A foil-wrapped burrito.
{I love you Chipotle. Seriously. Love you.}

A foil-wrapped Jessie.
{Bye-bye roots.}

A nasty sandwich.
{Caitlin's concoction, and it was a doozy. One's breath is not to be trifled with after consuming this much pickles and onions.}

My crack.
{Move over, Chipotle. Meet my new love... Ben & Jerry's.}

 Hunter's model volcano.

Hunter's model lunch.
{the kid lives on carbs.}

Classy dinner.
{complete with disembodied foot.}
 Nasty, never-ending winter.
{yeah, you read that right. -15F.}

A blizzard.

 Snow-day donuts.

If you're still with me after that thrilling collection, pat yourself on the back. 
And riddle me this:
Have I missed the boat on chambray shirts and colored denim, or are they still hip?
Can I jump on the bandwagon or should I let it roll on without me?
Opinions are welcome and appreciated. 

You can find me here on Instagram.
You should follow me. I'm a barrel of monkeys. ;)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Pastel Easter Mantel

I've got a secret soft spot for all things pastel and girly. But since it's not a color-palette I can live with for very long, I figure Easter is the perfect opportunity to embrace these sweet colors without making a long-term commitment. 
Without further ado, I give you:
the pastel Easter mantel!

Remember the monogrammed canvas above my headboard? Well, I moved the monogram and had this pretty blue canvas just lying around, so I decided to put it to good use above my kitchen mantel. I painted on the quote from this poem by Cecil Francis Alexander, but felt like it needed a little something more. I added a few swags of scrap-book paper mini-buntings, and it was good to go.

The little bunnies from my spring vignette found a new home on the mantel, along with a much larger friend.

The egg prints are from The Graphics Fairy. I've had them for several years and still love them. I just printed the images onto some heavy paper and stuck them in old frames: voila, instant art!

I was a little afraid all the pale pink and soft blue came off as more baby-shower than spring showers, but I decided to roll with it.  Hopefully you don't have a toothache after seeing this sugary-sweet pastel mantel. 

I'll be linking up here:
My Romantic Home
French Country Cottage
Savvy Southern Style
DIY by Design
Ironstone Nest
Creative Cain Cabin
Between Naps on the Porch
DIY Showoff
Jennifer Rizzo

Monday, March 18, 2013

Easter Chalk Art

As difficult as it is to believe- given the fact that we are in the midst of a March blizzard- Easter will be here before we know it. I wanted to lighten up my much-loved red chalkboard {seen here and here} to make it more appropriate for spring, so I gave it a quick coat of white paint. 

I made a rookie mistake with the chalk art and didn't sketch a design ahead of time. I just tried to freehand a design and it didn't turn out as nicely as I had hoped. However, I had sunk too much time into it to start over, so there it hangs, warts and all.

 My favorite part of this extremely simple little vignette is the cloche and birds nest. I coated two wooden eggs with glitter, stuck in some cherry blossoms and moss and called it a day.
It feels sweet and fresh... just like I imagine spring must feel for those of you lucky enough to experience it.
{Excuse my bitterness. I just read that today marks our 110th straight day of snow-cover.}

I'll be linking up here:
My Romantic Home
French Country Cottage
Savvy Southern Style
DIY by Design
Ironstone Nest
Creative Cain Cabin
Between Naps on the Porch
DIY Showoff
Jennifer Rizzo

Friday, March 15, 2013

Strawberry Salad: The Perfect Side Dish

Easter is just around the corner, and with the prospect of a big family meal many of us are asking the age-old question, "What can I bring?". 

I have the perfect solution: Strawberry Salad with Candied Almonds and Poppy Seed Dressing.
You've probably seen many versions of this salad, but the sweet and crunchy candied almonds combined with the tang of the dressing make this salad stand out from the crowd. 

Whether you are hosting a holiday meal or contributing a dish to a potluck, this salad is sure to impress. It's a wonderfully light counterpoint to the heaviness of an Easter ham. It is perfect for any potluck, no matter the occasion... in fact, that's where I had it for the first time. After enjoying two helpings at a hockey party, I begged the recipe off a fellow hockey mom and have been enjoying it ever since. 

To make the salad, you'll need:

3 heads of Romain lettuce, chopped
1 pint strawberries, sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced

For the candied almonds:
About 2/3 cup of sliced almonds
1/3 cup sugar
1T. butter
Combine the almonds, butter, and sugar and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until the sugar is melted and the almonds are brown. Watch carefully, since they burn easily. I didn't even want to risk pausing to take a picture, for fear they would scorch! You'll just have to imagine what this part looks like. ;-) When they are a nice toasty color, spread them on a glass plate and let cool. Break up any large chunks.

For the dressing:
3/4 cup real mayo
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 T. raspberry vinegar
2 T. poppy seeds

Combine ingredients in small bowl and whisk till well combined.

Combine salad ingredients, almonds, and dressing in a big serving bowl and toss till well combined. Serve immediately.
If I am bringing this dish to a potluck, I will leave the dressing and strawberries out till the last minute and add them just before we eat.

I made this at Thanksgiving and it was a big hit. It will definitely be on our Easter table as well {right along with our other family favorite, Cookie Salad}.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

What I Wore the Second Week of March

What I Wore Wednesday is here again, and I'll be linking up at The Pleated Poppy, along with hundreds of other camera-happy-clothes-lovers.
pleated poppy

Proving that I have no shame and that I am chronically late for important events, I snapped this photo before running out the door for my nephew's baptism. I had time to take a picture, but not time to make my bed or pick up my pajamas. Priorities, people.{Apparently, I also didn't have time to tuck in my cami... it's killing me that it's peeping out here. Did it do that all day?!} 
Cardi, shoes: Target
Shell: Herberger's (old)
Pants: Banana Republic
Pearls: Dress Barn

Please note my saggy-baggy knees in the next photo. This is not due to the jeans being in need of a wash {although that is often the case}. No, they are freshly laundered. In fact, the baggy knees are from the super-lunges/contortionist/yoga maneuvers I had to do in order to fit into said freshly laundered jeans. 
That winter-weight I'm carrying can hit the road any time now.
Sweater: Old Navy
Scarf: Mod Cloth
Tee: Boden
Jeans: Lucky
Shoes: Target

Jacket: Christopher and Banks
Turtleneck: Lands End
Jeans, flats: Target
Necklace: Old Navy
Pin: Claire's