Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My thoughts on a Wednesday night....

Blogging is a funny thing.

There are days when I don't really feel like talking much, but simply share some photos with you and call it a day.  And yet there are days when my fingertips move around the keyboard like ballerinas dancing to the Nutcracker. 

Similarly, there are days when I know that just being myself is good enough.  There is no pressure to produce, no pressure to keep up with the next big blog. 

And then there are days when I feel like I 'need' to post this and that, for fear that I wont be current enough. Do you ever get that feeling?  When you feel like you have to 'beat' everyone else to the punch because if you wait one more day, someone else will post 'your' idea? 

That feeling sucks away the joy of blogging for me.  The thing is, one can't always be the innovator, the maker of the next big thing.  It really is too much pressure to put on oneself and yet, I do it to myself constantly. 

As I walked down the aisles of a home decor store today, I found myself becoming increasingly filled with 'want' and 'need' to have.  I started to feel agitated and almost overstimulated by the plethora of things that I 'needed' for our home.  How easy could it have been to fill a cart with my 'necessities' (most of them for the sake of blogging).

I have been so 'inspired' of late to decorate the house for Christmas, yet it's not even November.  Which makes me question if my 'inspiration' arises from that 'need' to be first, 
or the true desire to welcome the season.

Perhaps it's a combination of both, but for now, I will take a minute or two to breathe the cool October air, hand out some Halloween candy, make some hot cocoa for the kiddies as they sort their candy treasures, all the while filling myself with what I really NEED - to see our children smile. 

Have a beautiful day! 

much love,

p.s. Enjoy your Halloween and please keep your kiddies close and stay safe.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Gourmet caramel apples....

As the wind's fury slaps our windows and the numerous reporters on television man their
 posts giving us minute by minute accounts of the storm, I sit here once again feeling grateful for the safety of our home and the roof over our head.  I pray that you are all keeping safe. 

Such a contradiction to the day when I took these photos...

I have been meaning to make these apples for hubby for quite some time now as he is often 'splurging' on those gourmet apples found at the mall.  I had a feeling it would be easy to duplicate, but didn't realize the mess factor involved when making them.

And of course, there was some trial and error.  Was it false advertising or my lack of culinary skills...hmm?  But after taking a pleasant shortcut it all worked out...

* 10 large Granny Smith apples
* Homemade caramel – or 2 bags individually wrapped caramels (I used this recipe)
* 1 lb of confectionery white chocolate
* 1/2 cup of sugar and cinnamon mixture to taste
* 1/2 cup of crushed Graham crackers or any other toppings such as crushed oreos, peanuts etc.
* 10 Popsicle sticks
* Sand paper
* Parchment paper

1) With fine sandpaper, lightly sand apples (this makes the caramel stick better)
2) Thoroughly wash and dry the apples
3) Insert popsicle sticks through top of apple and place apples in fridge to chill
4) In a large pan, melt caramels or follow preferred recipe; allow caramel to cool for 10 minutes
5) Dip apple in caramel, making sure apple is completely coated; allow excess to drip off and place apple onto cookie sheet lined with lightly greased parchment paper
6) Place apples in fridge to set approx 1-2 hours
7) Melt chocolate in water bath or microwave 
8) Coat apples with chocolate; allow excess to drip and let chocolate dry slightly but not completely 
9) Sprinkle apple with cinnamon mixture or any desired toppings and allow to cool in the fridge

 I surprised the kiddies after school but unfortunately 
for them, I only allowed them to eat half each...

Everyone loved them, making me happy :)

...a little bit of heaven on earth...

Thank you for stopping by.  Again, keep safe and talk to you soon.

much love,

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A little chilly...penguin cupcakes...

It has been raining here for what seems weeks and it doesn't look like it's going to let up any time soon.  As this horrible storm approaches, I hope those of you in its path will be taking the proper precautions and keep safe.  My thoughts and prayers are with all you who are being directly affected by this storm.

Despite the rain, we took some time to celebrate our little nephew's 1st birthday this weekend.  Last week, I shared some of these pictures with you via FB and Instagram (craftberrybush)

  I wanted to surprise my sister-in-law with the cake for the party...

So I asked my mami and sister to help me by baking the cake and 
cupcakes while I had A LOT of fun making these little guys out of fondant...

I chose a penguin motif as when my sister-in-law was pregnant, our niece would say she wanted to name her baby brother 'Penguin'.  I thought it was the sweetest thing ever.

 My little sister and mami also surprised her 
with this adorable penguin pinata.  Isn't the cute?

 Here's another photo I shared on FB as I was in the process of making them. 

Everyone enjoyed the cake but felt bad eating the penguins, so most 
of them survived as the kiddies wanted to keep them as keepsakes.  

My apologies for the quality of the photos.  As it was late evening and the weather was gloomy, they're not as clear as I would have liked.  Nevertheless, we had a lot of fun celebrating another milestone in our family.  

Thank you so much for visiting today. Please stay safe and say a little prayer for those being affected by this storm.

much love,

Saturday, October 27, 2012


Happy Weekend Friends!

Another busy weekend for our household but we wanted to take some time to show our 
appreciation for linking by featuring some of your amazing projects.  I know our linky party isn't one of the biggest ones out there, but I think we have some of the most talented and sweetest bloggers visit us every week.  Thank you for that! 

Without further adieu, here is what we're loving this week....

Food, Food, Food.  We love Food!  And so it only makes sense that we LOVE featuring YOUR food inspirations!!! 
Apple Cinnamon Chip Muffins by Adventures of D and V 
Mini Apple Crisp by Alderberry Hill

Coffee Cheesecake Oreo Brownies by Inside BruCrew Life 
Pineapple Right Side Up Cake by Just us Four

Pressed Pizza Panini by Shaken Together 
Winter Squash Chili by Architecture of a Mom

Halloween Food Ideas by a Pumpkin and a Princess

Maple Apple Muffins by A Pretty Life  
Mini Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Cupcakes by Becoming Martha

And I have to say, I LOVE nature and fall projects inspired by 
nature.  These projects are extra inspiring this time of the year!

Harvest Circle Felt Leaf Pillow by The Sweet Survival 
Cornhusk Votives by Live Laugh Rowe

Planting Succulents in a Pumpkin by Pleasure in Simple Things
Scalloped Lace Pinecone Bliss Bloom Blog

Faux Birch Bark by Twigg Studio 
Faux Antler Wreath by Twigg Studio

And last but SOOO not least are the DIY, Up-Cycled and Recycled 
projects that have left me drooling and dreaming about up-coming projects!

Contact Paper Wall Stripe by City Farm House 
Burlap Lamp Shade and Brass Lamp update by Love Grows Wild

Painted Bedroom Furniture by Alderberry Hill 
 Scrappy Letters and Chalkboard Revamp by One Project Closer's The Better Half

Barn Wood Bed for Babe by A Vintage Fairy  
Minted School Desk Re-vamp by Atkinson Drive

DIY Ruler Growth Chart by Love Grows Wild 
DIY floor length curtains by Liz Marie Blog

Flow Blue by Sew a Fine Seam 
Sweater Pillow by Love Grows Wild

Mason Jar Light by Creek Line House 
Painted Chin Cabinet by Daisy Mae Belle

Easy Sock Pumpkins by Confessions of a Plate Addict 
Trick or Treat Bag by A Pumpkin and a Princess
Weathered Bed DIY by Dear Emmeline
Fall Centerpiece by Love of Family and Home
Fall mantle via the Lilly Pad Cottage

As always, thanks for hanging out with us at Happy Hour---and if you are looking for even more inspiration, be sure to check out the party which is STILL going on here!  It will stay open until Tuesday. 

And don't forget to check out the Happy Hour Link Party Pinterest board for even more features!!!

Thursday, October 25, 2012


I've been looking forward to today all week.
 I've finally found some time to come and visit you
but before I do, let me share a bit of my week...

After a tough weekend, I wanted to cheer the kiddies up and painted some minion pumpkins from the Despicable Me movie.

This Halloween has been a little different as I have actually done a bit of Halloween decorating and have enjoyed the process.  So much so that I participated in a mini haunted house tour with Kelly from Eclectically Vintage and Jennifer Rizzo.  What an honour.  

I received two comments that made me laugh on that post.  1) "where is the crow sale?" It could be because it looks like I have so many crows all around the house.  So during my front porch vignette post, I shared that I actually only have three crows that just move around A LOT!  Which brings me to the next funny comment - "Have you taken it all down yet?" -referring to the hutch and the various Halloween vignettes on the Mini house tour post - The answer my sweet Emily, is YES....ha.

On the home front, we are still really missing our Benz but as with most difficult times in life, time tends to heal all.  Last Sunday I played my first indoor soccer game of the season and was pleasantly surprised my bones did not hurt next day.  I'm really trying to get back into my workout routine, but it doesn't help that I just had a slice of the cheesiest pizza while watching the new Tinkerbell movie with the kiddies...oops.  It's been a busy week so I'm looking forward to the weekend and catching up with you. 

Let's see what Taryn has been up to...

I just love, love, love Taryn's wheatgrass planter.  How pretty would this look holding apples or pomegranates and winter greens for Christmas?  Maybe I can get an early Christmas gift from a dear friend whose name starts with T?

I don't own a pair of TOMS, but when I do, I will surely make one of these cool crafts.  What a great list of recycling the TOMS flag.

And lastly, Taryn is in the process of re-doing her master bedroom and shows us some beautiful inspiration pictures.  I can't wait to see the final reveal! 

What has our friend Jaime been up to...

Jamie's taking her fall decor to a new level and her unique ideas are just so beautiful. 
You need to see what she used to make that bunting and wreath.  She also had the sweet Heidi stop by her place and share some of her own fall decor. 

Now let's see what you've been up to....YAY
Please take a look at these suggestions prior to linking.

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