Friday, February 18, 2011

Piece of (paper) cake!

Whenever possible, I like to personalize gifts. When a creative, paper loving friend is getting married of course I have to do more than just an item off the registry. Not that it's expected, it's just a perfect excuse to try a new paper craft project!

For Debbie's bridal shower I purchased the 
Pottery Barn Gabriella Cake Stand from her registry. What better to sit atop a simply beautiful cake stand than a paper cake! A quick Google search lead me to the blog How About Orange  with a how-to on paper cake slices. Perfect! Even more perfect was the link to Paper Source template and instructions on making these sweet slices. 

Using the template and several pieces of patterned paper (in the wedding colors) I made eight slices of cake - four chocolate and four vanilla. I arranged the slices on a doily, seven of the slices in a circle and one piece sliding out, and taped the doily to the cake plate.

While the slices didn't sit on the stand perfectly flat or cozy up next to each other very well, I think they turned out incredibly cute (if I do say so myself)!

In an effort to not create more waste, I used the Pottery Barn bag to wrap the gift. I spruced up the bag with a festive gift tag. To make the tag I used a the same paper as the cake slices and Tie-the-Knot Cricut cartridge. I mounted them on a piece of pretty paper and attached them to the bag with ribbon!


Notes:  To make a full cake, you'd want to make 10 slices.
Definitely use a thick paper such as card stock.
Cake slices are adorable and time consuming. 
Don't let anyone mistake your charming creation for actual cake (it doesn't taste the same!)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Now that we're 72 hours into our engagement (not that any ones counting...), it's starting to sink in and feel more real. This wasn't just a dream. We're still living our same lives, only now we're engaged (yay!). The first few days were spent (and still might be) smiling, gazing at my ring, re-telling the proposal details and soaking in the sweet congratulatory love we've received. 

One word that's entered our vocabulary, so far in a joking manner, is fiance. I've always thought it is such a weird word. As we were calling to share the news, we heard it a lot. One friend even joked that by the time you get used to saying "my fiance" you then transition to "my husband/wife" So, I guess it's time to work it into the vocab. 

On Valentine's Day my friend Layna, who's getting married this summer, shared: I wrote a card for Dave saying how lucky I am for him to be my fiance, but instead misspelled it and said finance...whoops! In addition to it being a weird word to begin with, it is commonly misspelled. While I couldn't help but laugh at Layna's mishaps, I'm sure I've done it a million times in reference to my engaged friends - awkward!

Last night I asked B what he wanted to do this weekend and his response was "I don't know, be fianced." While I knew that's not a real word, just enjoying the fact we're engaged and now fiances does sound like a nice weekend plan. 

In an effort to avoid future blunders, I decided to look up the spelling of fiance. Turns out I've probably been spelling it incorrectly and calling men, women and vise versa - doubly awkward! Here are the correct spelling and definitions for full clarification:
fiance: a man engaged to be married
fiancee: a woman engaged to be married

I also looked up engaged for the heck of it
 1. involved in an activity
2. pledged to be married
3. greatly interested
4. involved in an especially hostile encounter
5. being in gear 

So here's to being a fiancee to my fiance, or fianced...if you will. I hope our engagement is a good mix of 1, 2, 3 and 5 and none of 4!

{definitions via merriam-webster}

Bridal Shower Banner: Debbie Loves Jeremy

Before tying the knot, it's important the bride be showered with lots of love. In preparation for her April wedding, over the weekend was Debbie's first bridal shower. Her best friend and maid of honor, CeCe, planned and executed a beautiful Parisian bridal shower. 

Cece claims she's not creative but I strongly disagree. When she showed us her inspiration for the shower, I was impressed by her creativity in pulling from several sources to make a truly unique shower for her best friend! I offered to help with some of the paper details, such as the cute banner below as seen on the blog Green Wedding Shoes

{green wedding shoes}
Aww how sweet, Debbie Loves Jeremy

To make the banner, I used pink doilys from the Michael's $1, cricut letters (black letters with a white shadow) strung them on oyster gray twine. I was having trouble taking a photo of the entire banner so I cropped several photos for the picture above. 

Below is an up-close photo to show the details. I love these doilys and would highly recommend them for projects. They are thin, so not highly durable, but so perfectly frilly and feminine.

After spelling out Debbie Loves Jeremy, I had one extra doily. In honor of the other love in Debbie and Jeremy's lives, I created one for Lola the cat! As seen in the picture below, Lola was napping or hiding the entire shower, but I'm sure she was thankful for the shout-out. 

One of the beautiful tables at the shower! For more photos and details, visit Debbie's blog.

Me and the bride-to be!

 Next up, bachelorette party!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine Cards

Even though Valentine's Day was like sooo yesterday I wanted to share some Valentine creativity. I'd intended to share this post yesterday, but as you can imagine I was a little distracted

Whether you love or hate the holiday, there is no denying the possibilities for creativity. In my eyes the holiday is not about flowers and chocolate, its about thoughtful gestures for those we love (which to some might be flowers and chocolate). My favorite part, as I've mentioned too many times before, is making cards to send to the people I love most! 

Last week Rachel hosted a Valentines, Candy and Wine party (similar to the monster cupcake and gingerbread village holiday parties).  The purpose of the party was to get a bunch of ladies together to gossip, drink wine and make valentine cards and cupcakes.
In addition to hosting, Rachel baked the cupcakes and provided the frosting and decorations. I brought blank cards, pattern paper, stamps and my beloved cricut. The rest of the group was encouraged to bring any items that could be used for cards (glitter, ribbon, crape paper, markers, stickers, etc) and a beverage or appetizer to share.

  Twelve lovely, and extremely creative, ladies showed up and dove right in to the card making. I was beyond impressed by the creativity; each card was unique and made from a variety of the materials. I was also shocked that only two bottles of wine were consumed amongst all those ladies. In between showing people how to use the cricut I made a card for my valentine. Here are most of the cards made that night many of which are for these ladies valentine's.

HVD {Happy Valentine's Day} by Sandy

Be Mine by Debbie

Crape paper ruffles by Debbie

Robot Love by Rachel
inside says: that's robot for i love you!

I freaking heart you by Jordan (a PA student, can you tell?)
inside says: you make my heart skip a beat

Happy Valentines by Christina

Doilys and crape paper by Jess

I like you a latte by Surime
she made this whole cup. the details are impressive!

I heart JB byAriane
Happy Valentines by Ashlee
I love the mix of felt, twine and cricut letters

I love you {a latte} by yours truly
the actual size is 8.5x11. i used cricut letters, a latte picture from a magazine, crape paper behind the latte, and debbie's lace paper edger (love that sucker!)
The card above was made for my funny valentine, barista and fiance (woah!). I also got him Whiskey Rocks and a bottle of his favorite whiskey. B gave me a sweet card and got me set up with renters insurance (practical and totally appreciated) to cover my new bling! We had a nice low key evening at home. I made dinner, we shared our answers to this qui
 and watched Despicable Me.
For all the other loves in my life, I made a variety of cards using paper I had on hand. My favorite part of the Valentine's were the heart envelopes I mail them in. I made all of the envelopes using the Multicolor Wrapping Paper from PS (same paper I used to make the paper heart garland). I can't imagine opening a mailbox and not be excited to find these cute, bright hearts. I heart them.


Also worth mentioning...yesterday was my six year anniversary with KP. Not a significant milestone by any means, just hard to believe I've had a real job for seven years. Prior to working at KP I worked at the AHA. I will always remember my KP anniversary for the irony - I left the AHA and started at KP on Valentine's day.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Yesterday afternoon on a cliff overlooking Tennessee Cove, Brian asked me to marry him! Here's the story and a few photos. I still can't believe WE'RE ENGAGED! So excited and just trying to let it all soak in. 

A few weeks back Brian suggested we go for a hike the weekend before Valentine's day. Sounded like a great idea to me and I didn't think too much about it. As the weekend got closer he was talking about these hiking plans frequently. For those that don't know, Brian is not a huge planner so I was suspicious, but tried my very best to keep my expectations in check. As we left for our "hike" yesterday morning I was pretty sure it was just a thoughtful Valentine's hike and I'd made up the fact we might get engaged.

We arrived to Tennessee Cove just after noon and made the trek from the parking lot to the ocean. It was a beautiful day and there were lots of other people hiking and picnicing on the beach. The sun was shining when we left the parking lot and as we got to the cove it was pretty foggy. Brian suggested we hike up one of the hills to get a better view of the ocean and cove area.

When I say hike up one of the hills, I really mean walk straight up the side of the hill. I felt like a mountain goat. We were almost to the top when we passed a woman who said we were almost there and that the view was one of the best she's ever seen. She mentioned a small cliff area where you can look down and you're over the ocean. Once we got to the top this was the view... and it really was a great, fog and all.

We found the cliff area she was referring to and Brian asked me to take his picture.

 Then he took the camera and said "now let me take your picture." I not a huge fan of cliffs with no railings, but I stood for my picture. Then Brian says "come back here, the picture is missing something." He pulls out a ring box and the first words out of my mouth are "no way!" as in i could not really believe it was happening! Then he asked me if I'd marry him. Of course, I said YES! followed by quite a few oh-my-gosh, oh-my-gosh.

As we are standing there letting the engagement soak in, Brian pulls out a bottle of wine. He made sure to get a bottle from a winery we'd been to together. So sweet! Here is a pic of the ring, the wine, the fog and the ocean. OH and speaking of the ring, I abosultely love it!

As we were enjoying a glass of wine, Brian told me that while we were hiking up the side of the hill he was thinking this is why I'm marrying her...she will climb up the side of a hill without complaining (most of the time). He also told me how he'd asked both of my parents and how sneaky he was at buying the ring. I told him about how I thought maybe this hike was "the hike" and then didn't think that because he was so calm. I also told him how perfect this day was. I couldn't imagine us celebrating such a big moment any other way.

As we were chatting, the fog burned off and it was now a spectacular day! Here's a pic of the cove minus the fog. We got so lucky with the weather, because as I write this the rain is back in the bay area.

We're engaged!!

Even the moon came out to congratulate us!

We spent over two hours on the hillside, chatting, taking pictures and enjoying the view. I'd left my cellphone in the car and was so happy not to have it (for probably the first time ever). It was so wonderful to have the news and excitement just between us. 

When we got back to the beach, we collected some rocks and sand and had a stranger take our picture. She was asking which way we wanted to face, and we made she got the proposal spot in the picture. After she took the picture I said "we just got engaged up there!" It just flew out of my mouth and I realized the first person we told was a total stranger.

When we got back to the car we both called family and friends. That's when it really started to sink in....we're engaged! On our way home we stopped at In and Out burger for an ultra classy and romantic engagement dinner.

As I joked with Brian yesterday....and now the planning begins! It might be a surprise to those that know me (the planner) best, but I'm actually kidding. I want to wait to start planning for a liiiiiittttllleeee bit so we can enjoy this time. 

We have already been showered with so many sweet comments, calls and messages. Thank you so much. I truly feel like the luckeist girl in the world!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sikora's in the City

Well hello blog. I've missed you. Life has been busy so I've been away. Now it's time to catch up!

Last weekend Stephanie and Mark (aka the Sikora's) spent the weekend with us in the city by the bay! As always, we had a great time with them. The weather was absolutely perfect and the weekend a good balance between activities, relaxing and lots of laughing. 

Here are a few picks from the weekend...
Friday we spent the day in San Francisco with the bay area's newest resident, Sandy, shopping, eating and walking. After lunch we stopped at Blue Bottle for lattes and a cookie!
me, Sandy and Stephanie
 Saturday we headed to the wine country. At the recommendation of several people, we visited the Russian River area. Awesome smaller wineries, friendly people and free tastings! Here we are at Hook & Ladder winery.
Stephanie, B, Mark, Ashlee and me
 Sunday morning we got up early and headed into the city for the KP 5K in Golden Gate Park. That's right all star employees thriving on a Sunday morning! Here we are flexing with some characters from ETP.

The race finishes across the street from Ocean Beach. We walked over to the beach and tried to put our feet in. Don't be fooled, the water is still freezing even when the sun's out.
Mark and Stephanie
For their arrival, I made Stephanie and Mark welcome cards and small gifts. 

This was Stephanie's third visit to the bay so I made her a photo collage to welcome her back to the city by the bay! I printed the collage on a 5x7 and made it into a card. I got her a bottle of Sofia bubbly to enjoy while here.

Since Sikora is close to Sequoia, I wanted to make Mark something to do with the national park. I mentioned this to B and using his mad photoshop skills, he transformed a photo from our trip to the park this fall. Isn't that awesome? I printed the photo on 5x7 and made into a card with wood grain paper. At Cost Plus I put together a 6 pack of local area beers for Mark to enjoy while in town. I used the same wood grain paper to wrap the base of the 6 pack.

Thanks for the fun weekend, Sikora's!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

blast from the past: ski passes

When people ask me how long I've been skiing I tell them I started on the driveway not long after I learned to walk. It sounds like a tall tale, but it's not far from the truth. I really did learn to ski on the driveway, followed by years of complimentary ski passes and  ski school lessons thanks to my Dad working for the ski area (Breckenridge, to be exact). 

On their recent trip to the Bay Area, Dad brought along a treasure to share with B - years and years of our ski passes! He's saved every single one from when we were kids and he lived in Colorado. It is always a hilarious and heart warming experience to flip through them. As a kid there were many Saturday mornings I wanted to sit in my pj's and watch cartoons. I know I'm insanely lucky to have been on the ski slopes instead and looking at all the passes is a good reminder of just that.

I am now the proud keeper of all the passes. I want to do something with them - frame, collage - I'm just not quite sure what (suggestions welcomed!) . In the meantime, I wanted to share some of my favorites. 

yours truly 
{age 5}
 Apparently my first official ski pass was at age 5. At this age I was definitely skiing the bunny hill or easy greens with my parents close behind. I wish I could still have this picture as a ski pass photo! 

{age 8}
At this age I was holding my own on skis, the confidant smile says it all. If I wasn't skiing with my parents, dww (my brother) or these girls, I was cruising through the enchanted forest with ski school. Speaking of the smile, thank goodness for braces in my later years! 

{age 10}
Hello permed hair and waterfall bangs, glad you could make it to the mountain! In case no one can see the early 90s look when I'm wearing a ski hat, surely my neon ski jacket will let them know what's up. At this age the benefits to all those ski school lessons were paying off. I could ski almost anything, but could not keep up with my brother (still can't!)

{age 6}
i love just about everything about this photo - the trucker hat and poofy ski jacket that make him look like a 6 year old and let's not forget the 'signature'. this was his first official ski pass.

{age 11}
I love: the hair (i'm sure a ski hat was just removed...), the devilish smile and the fact that I know he's wearing a one piece ski suit! At this age there is no doubt he was flying down the mountain (regardless of the run, he went straight down). To this day he still flies down the mountain, but with much more grace. And to his credit, he always waited for the bottom.

{age 28}
This is the first ski pass of the bunch from when he moved to Colorado. LOVE the volume in his hair (clearly that's where I get mine) and the very 70s looking going on here. Please note his signature; he's always had amazing handwriting! 

{age 37}
I wonder if Dad and DWW coordinated their trucker hats for the '86 ski pass photos? 
Regardless, I love it. As far as my Dad's ski ability,  he was an excellent skier and teacher and always carried Jolly Ranchers in his ski jacket! 

Hope this brings a little humor into your day!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Paper Heart Garland

Last week I shared a dose of lovely hearts and crafts that caught my eye. But wait, there's more! Check out these paper hearts made by Smile Monsters.

{Smile Monsters}

I decided to make a few to hang in our apartment.  As seen in the top photo, I made my paper hearts into a garland that is now hanging just above our stairs (same place I hung the bats for halloween)! 

To make the hearts I followed Smile Monsters easy to follow instructions found here.

Here are the supplies I used:
Paper cutter (with scalloped blade)
Silver eyelets
Eyelet and Snap punch (thanks, mom!)
Multicolor Hearts wrapping paper
Red, yellow and kraft card stock

I've included a few pictures of putting my hearts together. As mentioned above, the instructions were easy to follow. If you decide to make these, here are my suggestions:
- use a fun patterned paper, the thicker the better (I recommend card stock)
- if you use one sided patterned paper, make sure the pattern faces out!
- the trickiest part was holding the strips of paper and placing the eyelet. if you have an extra set of hands, use them here (thanks, b!)

Here is the finished product. I love the scalloped edges and multicolor heart paper!

I strung my three paper hearts on a piece of hemp cord. I tied a few small knots on either side of the eyelet so they wouldn't slide. To round out the garland I added two red hearts cut out on the cricut.

Happy February!