Thursday, September 29, 2011

How To - Living Room Gone Batty

I've missed you all!! I'm back from Phoenix (photos to come soon!) and I craved some serious crafting. I needed to add another Halloween something or other to my living room, my All Hallows Eve banner was beginning to look so lonely!

I read the latest issue of Martha a couple times during my 12 hours of plane time last week.  She did so many things with simple black silhouette images around the house. So off of that inspiration, I also found great ideas on Pinterest (my pins are here!) with flying bats all over the walls. I had to do it....

Here's a little how-to 

Step 1: find a bat template that fits your style (use google image search). Or just make your own. I spent too much time searching for a half-bat print out when all I needed to do was free hand a pair of wings. Oh well. 

print out or cut out some half-bats
fold your black paper in half, and trace the bat wing
Step 2: Fold your paper in half, so you have half the tracing and half the cutting. Think, trying to draw/cut a heart when you were in first grade. Why were hearts so difficult to draw? Drove me crazy.

Step 3: After tracing as many bats as you want, get to cutting! With this project, I think you need to go all out or else it won't look how you want it. Give yourself a few hours, maybe during your significant others' favorite sporting event (curling?) and get in the zone. 

cut! Don't feel constrained to only black paper!
Step 4:  I knew all that blue painters tape I bought for Hurricane Irene would come in handy at some point. Rip of your pieces, and roll em up, and stick em to the back of every single one of your loverly batties...

Step 5:  Arrange around your room! Have fun!


I made my batties look like they were coming in through one door and then leaving out a side window. Don't be worried about placing them on top of paintings or other decorations, it's just painters tape! And real life bats wouldn't give a freak where they landed inside your house (we had one chill out on our computers, so cute).

Night shot!
Have fun!! Give yourself some free time and go for it. Use whatever papers you want, or maybe try another spooky animal other than bats. If you have an electronic cutting machine, I think doing this with spiders and spider webs would look pretty festive.

<3 Rachel w k
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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Entertaining Wine Labels - Even Hello Kitty Gets Wasted

I couldn't help myself.  I am visiting my parents in Phoenix this week, and am going through craft withdrawals. I'm actually going through brain withdrawals forgetting a lot of my meds back home, but that's another issue. So here is a non crafty post about my favorite wine labels at our recent trip to Total Wine (love).

We don't have wine stores like this in Connecticut. It's a real shame, and it is slightly depressing but life goes on.  If you know me even a little bit, you know I like my wine, but sometimes I have to admit I like the wine labels even better than the liquid inside....

My favorite wine labels from today, pictures taken from my phone, please enjoy...

Your eyes do not deceive you. Hello Kitty now sports a pink dessert wine.  She is a little pricey, I think about $16 a bottle... don't let your children have it, regardless of the adorable too cute to handle label!

Admittedly,  this was my very favorite of the labels. I mean, it's just perfection. Arrested Development anyone?

"Just because I'm not pure breed doesn't mean I'm not a good dog"  this little pup reminded me of Lou, from The Soup. (anyone?)

Just a good name. Definitely sounds like it's party time. WOoot!

Whenever a worker at a wine store asks me if I'm looking for anything in particular, my response is usually "something cheap and white"  So ya, they know what's up.

This just had amazing artwork, I am loving that drawing. I would buy it poster sized.

Oh ya, and I haven't had In n' Out in 29 months, so I had to make a stop with my mom....

perfection between two pieces of delicious carbs
What's your guilty food secret? You know you've got one. C'mon, spill it...

<3 Rachel w k
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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How To Tuesday - Semi Homemade Doughtnuts

Happy Tuesday! I am doing a bajillion things at once right now, as I pack up my suitcase and have to rush over to the airport in an hour! But I had to share this amazingly delicious and super simple doughnut recipe I found over at Pinterest...

are your eyes drooling yet? Christy's doughnuts... mine are shown later!
This yum of a picture linked me over to a recipe at Southern Plate by Christy.  When I read the ingredients, all 5 of them, I immediately gave em a try!

Canned biscuits (I got Pillsbury Grands) from refrigerated section... just do not get flaky ones!
Vegetable Oil
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon (mix your cinnamon and sugar together in a bowl)
1/2 stick of butter (melted)

Step 1:  Use something, anything you have, to make a hole in your biscuit. I used the cap from a Vitamin Water, turned out to work pretty well!

Step 2: fill a skillet with about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil, at medium heat. I over heated my oil so it was just searing the doughnuts, not cooking them. Throw in a doughnut hole as a tester to see if it's the right temp for you...

 Step 3: Put in about half your doughnuts at a time (easier for me to manage). Your doughnuts will only need about 45 seconds on each side to cook (who knew, so quick!) and little bubbles will form around the outside of the dough.  Then flip accordingly!

Step 4: Place your doughnuts on a plate with paper towels to soak up some oil. Once they are cool enough to hold, but still warm, dip them in your melted butter, then dip them in your cinnamon sugar mix. Do this for each side.  My husband and I got way too excited about this part, so we forgot to take a picture :( sorry!

Step 5: Let them melt in your freakin mouth. They were sooooo good. Mine will a little seared and not as pretty as Christy's, but they were still delicious. The little bit of a burnt taste reminded my husband and I of the Indian Frybread we would order in Tucson, Arizona... sooooo goooood

um yum
WARNING: I burnt my arm from a oil splatter, it looks like my left arm is covered in chicken pox scars right now. So just be careful getting these babies out of that pan!!  Enjoy!

I will be linking this pinterest inspired recipe over at By the Book Paper's pinterest Thursday (on Thursday, not Tuesdays!)

<3 Rachel w k..... and I'm off to catch a plane! Thank you everyone for all the birthday wishes!!
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Monday, September 19, 2011

Had to share Hubs bday card..

Party like it's your birthday!!!!
it's your birthday pictures

My husband made me a .GIF for my birthday card!! I could not stop laughing, this is true nerd love right here, folks. (Represents all of the animals in our life, our fur babies) <3 Rachel w k
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Happy Birthday to Me... WINNER!

Thank you and thank you to everybody who sent birthday wishes my way and entered my 25 for 25 birthday bash give away. You all left some super entertaining stories about your favorite birthday gift, I loved reading them! And a huge hello to new followers, I will be stopping by all of your blogs soon! I love to see all the talent that's hidden on the blog-o-sphere...

So I used the random generator to pick a winner and.....

took a pic with my phone lol
CONGRATS NUMBER 22! Who is #22 you're wondering, as I count down the list, the winner is...

ISHA who said: So glad to have finally found my B'day partner...mine is also on the Enjoy your day and have fun.

Isha is in the Hero Arts flickr group with tons of lovely and talented women.  I can't believe she won the gift card AND its her birthday today also! Happy Birthday to the winner, Isha! I'll be contacting you soon about your gift card :)

For my birthday I'll be flying home to see my family. I may be a little MIA for the next week, but don't worry I always come back :)

<3 Rachel w k
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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Stackaholic Challenge and a Happy Mailbox

Have I ever posted a scrapbook page on this blog?!?  I have been neglecting my first paper love: my scrapbooks.  I have a lot to catch up, and doing this Stack-a-holic template challenge over at DCWV finally got me in the groove again! Bout freakin time...

September layout challenge sketch
The hardest part was finding one single picture to put on a whole 12x12 page.  I never ever put just one picture, I usually cram as many in as possible.  I decided to showcase a picture of my darling puppy Meeko, from our Maine vacation...

I followed the sketch pretty super closely, I wanted to stay inside the lines :)  I used only papers from the DCWV Dots, Stripes, and Plaids stack. The little polka dot chipboard piece is even from a dots, stripes, and plaid embellishment collection that I had around... win.  I stamped the little fox from Lawn Fawn and colored it with color pencils, we always say our little guy looks like a baby fox awww.  The title says "dog days of Summer"

So I was so into this idea that I couldn't stop.  And you know I have a million more pictures of my puppy in Maine, so I made a second page along the same theme...

omg i heart my puppy like so much
 see what I mean? I need to get a lot of pictures on that damn page.  I repeated some of the rectangles and the same glittery black ribbon.  All the papers are also from the DCWV dots, stripes, and plaid paper stack.

the two pages side by side.

Changing Gears!...

I was so so so smiley when I checked the mail today to find a gooorrrgeeouuusss creation, made just for me, by my amazing crafty friend Kari.  She has so much talent, and such a big heart, she surprised me with this birthday card! I don't know how long I was "awwww"-ing, my husband didn't know what was going on.  Here's what she made me :)

lovely bday card from Kari!
I am definitely swooning over this.  It was so so nice to get this from her, it totally made my day! THANK YOU KARI!!!!

<3 Rachel w k
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Thursday, September 15, 2011

My 1st Banner - All Hallows Eve

I am very proud to say that I have officially finished my very first banner! I don't know how you crafty ladies make so many of these things, they are sooo muuuch work!  But I definitely love love how it turned out... warning, there will a picture explosion in this post!

I've been scouring the beloved Pinterest (follow me here!) to find the perfect Halloween banner for my tastes.  I didn't want something too basic like "happy halloween" and I didn't want something too kid-ish like "boo!" I came up with my own saying for my banner of "All Hallows Eve" but I was inspired by the design of this one...

my inspiration found on pinterest... cant find original maker :(
I loved how the design was funky, patterned, fun, but not lame or cheese-ball either. I also wanted to add the slightly less traditional colors of lime green and purple.

My finished Banner!
Here are some close ups of my favorite squares...

I cut 17 of the black squares with my Silhouette SD, embossed each with a bubble folder and my Sizzix Texture Boutique, then rubbed white chalk over for the embossing to stand out.  Each letter was typed into Make The Cut software with a regular layer and a shadow layer (font is Harrington) then cut with the Silhouette SD.

before and after - spiders!
The squares on either end of the banner are only embellished with one glittery spider.  I bought this pack of 6 black spiders at Michaels for $2. I sprayed them with spray adhesive and covered them in Sterling glitter by Martha Stewart.  For details, I used orange creamsicle stickles.

look at that happy glittery spider!

a view with our big doors open, like they always are anyways :)
All smaller embellishments are from Recollections and K & Company.  All papers are DCWV.  After spending so much time on the banner, the last thing I wanted to do was make my own die cuts for each piece!

What do you think!? Have you made holiday banners in the past? I'm pretty pleased with my first project of this sort... woohoo!

This project will be linked to By the Book Paper's Pinterest Thursday link-up!

<3 Rachel w k
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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Trip to the US Open + NYC + 9/11

On Sunday, my hubs and I took a day trip to New York City to go to our first US Open tennis match! This was also my birthday gift from him, so I was allowed to go into any shopping stores I desired ;)  We were also in NYC for the ten year anniversary of September 11. It was amazing to be there, I have to say.  Warning - This will be a picture intensive post, have fun lookin'!

First stop out of Grand Central Station was Rockefeller Plaza30 Rock is my entire family's favorite show on tv ever (next to arrested development) so this is always a must-stop.

Me at 30 Rock
gold man in front
Rockefeller Center has the craziest artwork, very entertaining
 Then we visited Times Square...

 I have never seen New York City more empty than it was on Sunday, it was almost scary how quiet it was.  Most of the large screens on the buildings were displaying images like the one above, or just images of the American flag.
St. Patrick's Cathedral NYC
Then we took a long, but easy, subway trip on the 7 train over to Flushing Meadows for the US Open women's finals!....

you can welcome me anytime, thank you!
we were front n' center for the boys' junior finals... Oliver Golding beat number one Jiri Vesely
In awe of Arthur Ashe stadium... finally get to be there in person!
Before the women's finals, we also got to watch the women's doubles finals and see the trophy ceremony for that, so we got to see 3 finals in one day! Pretty cool!

Queen Latifah sings the National Anthem
Stoser gets the trophy! Beats out Serena Williams
And there were a lot of great sights and views from Flushing Meadows park....

from the 1964 World's Fair, so so cool
NYC skyline view from top of Arthur Ashe stadium
Champions Circle! Feds is freakin awesome
So that was my Sunday!! I love tennis, it is such an amazing sport.  To be in such a great venue, live, with such great players was a very very cool experience! We are already planning our trip for the 2012 US Open :)

<3 Rachel w k
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