Monday, January 31, 2011

weekend highlights

four hours to myself, in where I did what I do best:
roamed a bookstore,
sipped tea
and read.

I concluded this leisure time with my second ever manicure.
I'm a fan of the soft pink on my nails, you?

This weekend also included wearing this frock that had been waiting to be worn,
with black leggings and my cute Jessica Simpson black pumps.
A full picture you ask?  Well I tried and I just couldn't bring myself to post one...

In my new frock, Husband and I enjoyed a seafood dinner and called it a night shortly after.
What can I say?  We've got toddlers and love our sleep.
But this is not to say that Husband didn't break it down in the parking lot to Usher,
 before our return home.
Because he did. 
And I may or may not have it on video.

Much of yesterday was spent outdoors--
a five mile run along the lake
and gardening at our soon-to-be new residence, while the children ran rampantly around the acres.
Lucky for me, the dirt washed away from my new, pale, pink nails.
I've also began the initial planning of our garden, and I am beyond excited.

I have so much to share with you!
Pictures of the new place soon!

How was your weekend?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

a boy and his cape

Last week my friend, Brittany and I made capes for our boys.
We followed the tutorial from The Pleated Poppy.
It was easy, fun and we had great results!
I am so glad I finally did it since it has been on my list of projects for almost a year!

If only I didn't have to force Asher into said cape for pictures. 
Shocking, considering he pretends to be a superhero at least one hour of each day,
and would probably say he relates best with Spiderman, Ironman and Superman.

It is a little long for him (almost down to his ankles),
but it will be able to be put to use for a couple more years.
And, I was thrilled when I found the polka dot and the main multi-colored fabric for 50% off! 
It was a steal for this soft and good quality fabric.
Oh, and the fabric that I used to make the "A" says
 "Super Helper!" all over it.

The only downside is that Husband seems to think this is girl fabric,
and that I should have used solids?

What do you think?

Now, I must go.  My daughter said she wants to call the police on me because she isn't having any fun.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

the little things

a clean fridge.
journal writing.
pretty earrings.
notes in the mail.
daydreams of summer.
crafts with my children.
a fresh bouquet of lavender.
Bible studies by Priscilla Shirer.
a healthy body, family, marriage and life.
the anticipated arrival of my new niece.  I cannot wait to meet her!
friends who offer to baby-sit swap!  because we need to refuel our sanity supply...
sharing embarrassing stories with good friends.
the comeback after what felt like defeat.

Do you have little things that you'd like to share?
The Little Things is a series that happens every Thursday,
and one that you can link up to on the right sidebar. 
Join us!  We'd love to come visit!
It's the little things that matter.

Monday, January 24, 2011

ribbon and hearts...and a vote!

With Valentines Day approaching,
I've been creating some new lovelies for the shop.
Plenty of pink, red, white and hearts are scattered about my table.
I can't wait to show you them.
They'll be up in the shop soon!

Happy Monday!

P.S. The Cupcake Contest that I entered is now taking votes!  There are eleven lovely cupcake photos to choose from, so hop on over to The Middlest Sister and cast your vote.  But don't forget who sent ya! ;)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

a weekend recipe project

I need to turn this:

into this:

and the rest of this business:

into this:

and its needed to be done for far too long.

There are two recipe templates that I'm using that I found through House of 3.
I downloaded the template,
made them the size that I needed and chose my own colors
of cardstock.  And, if I ever need any more, I don't have to worry about not finding the same cards!
Hooray for downloads!

I also cut the dividers out of chip board and stamped on the words appetizers, breads and so on.
It's a very fun project if you are in need of recipe collection rehab.

Are you working on any projects this weekend?

xo, Cassie

Thursday, January 20, 2011

the little things

the band perry.
morning sunbreaks.
runs on brisk, winter, late-afternoons.
welcoming the day in quiet.
exercising to worship music.
a cup of joe to soothe midday anxieties.
painted nails.
a surprise package of loveliness in the mail.
realizing YOU ARE capable of that daunting task.

Do you have little things that have been pulling on your heart-strings that you'd like to share?
Join 'The Little Things' with your own post, on your blog, and link up on the right side-bar.
Don't forget to link back to my blog in your post! 
Until I can get a grab-button, feel free to put 'The Little Things--a series' photo on your blog--with a link back of course!
I look forward to having you share in these 'little things'
that make each day brighter. 

Monday, January 17, 2011

cappuccinos and crepes

Ours was a wonderful weekend!  Husband and I did our very best to relax and enjoy each day.  Saturday was an especially a great day, with a massage, a nap, a finished book and a date!  I'd been looking forward to Saturday, as it was our first date in a few months!

On our date, we enjoyed a nice dinner at Newport (we are very much seafood people), watched what turned out to be an intense Blazer game win (with the funniest of commentary by the couple behind us), and the perfect nightcap.

If you are ever in Portland, may I suggest Vivace for the most delicious cappuccinos and crepes?

Our favorite crepe is the
Nutella, Banana, Toasted Almonds and Whipped Cream Crepe.

I hope you had fun this weekend!
What did you do?

Friday, January 14, 2011

he melts hearts.

Obviously, I put him in this. 
I couldn't resist.
But the way he loves it
melts me.

Have a happy, happy weekend!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

the little things

Thursday's 'The Little Things' is a documentation of recent things or moments which have
moved, excited, stirred, beckoned, or inspired--
each pulling on my heart-strings in a special sort of way.

This is the third installment of 'The Little Things.'

Asher repeating Spanish to the TV while watching Dora
Brooklynn's surprise outfit combinations
morning writing sessions
old Dixie Chick songs--they remind me of when Husband and I were friends in high school...
learning a song on my guitar
phone calls from my sisters
blog comments
bible study (tomorrow begins a new 7 week study!)
bedtime's peace and quiet
an evening cup of tea
thoughts of summer
a "date" with Husband this weekend
being closer and closer to a big, exciting move to the country
relateable song lyrics
cake and cupcake shows
people who aren't afraid to reach out

Want to go back?  Click 'the little things' label below.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I snuck away

I knew it was a bookstore sort of day.

I knew it was so, that I planned my entire morning around being free in the afternoon to roam rooms of books and rooms that spilled into other rooms of more books.  I swear to you Powell's Books  seeps euphoria.

Do you ever have those kind of days?  When the only thing you want to do is smell, touch and read books?

Many read to escape reality and maybe I'm just the same.  I can't say there was anything to avoid this otherwise regular Tuesday, but nothing was clearer than the fact that my heart wanted to leap between pages and lie there for a while.  The possibility to happen upon a work that could change my life might also have some weight in this matter. 

Do you ever turn pages hoping that within might lie a gem of wisdom that you will remember forever?

This might be the exact reason that I last-minutely walked past the writing section, landed eyes on Natalie Goldberg's, "The Great Failure," picked it up, skimmed over the back, and called her a keeper.
Maybe, in some sort of serendipitous-sort-of-way, Goldberg's gold covered memoir was the only real reason I went downtown today?  Perhaps between the hard covers is a story that might interweave with mine, and/or spill open a truth that I didn't know I was searching for and will sing prelude into my life's next chapter?

Such is the mysterious adventure in books and in reading.  Maybe I'm romanticizing a bit?

With the tick of freezing rain bouncing off the window pane, steeping mint tea and a stack of beautifully unread books on my nightstand, I have finalized my decision on my first read for the year 2011.  Instead of Vladimir Nabokov's, "Lolita" or Virginia Woolf's, "A Room of One's Own," I begin with "The Great Failure: A Bartender, a Monk, and My Unlikely Path to Truth." It came about when I had other things in mind, but so goes life--

many, many unlikely paths leading to truth.

Now, I hope it's a good one.

{UPDATE: I'm two pages in and already marking this book up!  This is a very good sign.}

What are you reading this New Year?

Monday, January 10, 2011

a winter {penguin} baby shower

This last weekend, I had the opportunity to host a baby shower for my sister-in-law who is due in less than a month.  Since, it's not every day that I host a party, and never had I hosted any sort of shower, I was thrilled to seek inspiration and bring to life such a party for this lovely lady.  

Since it is January, and the weather is forecasting snow all over the map, I had to capitalize on the season. 
But of course, with snow, there should be penguins!

Penguins, penguins, penguins!

ice blocks and flurries of fake snow centered the table,

with decorative penguins

and edible penguins scattered about.
Husband made these little guys.
Aren't they sweet? And him, too?
He complained when I asked him to clean the bathroom,
but jumped on making edible penguins.
He can't resist a session of creativity.

There were chocolate and vanilla cupcakes topped with fluffy cream cheese frosting

and plenty of snowflake sugar cookies, too.

This black stemware was a must,
and I have my Mom's best friend to thank.
Now, if I could only get myself a set of 12 or 18!
I'm becoming my mother...but black is SO versatile!

The candles added to the winter ambiance.

I had such a fun time making this banner.  I just loved making the tiny snowflakes and the wee little 
paper-pieced penguin in the center.
It was inspired by one of Brooklynn's children's books.
The papa penguin on the mantle is my new favorite winter friend.  I eyed him at the store for at least a couple months, and finally snatched him up for $11.99.  Unfortunately, he only had two arms for about a day.  The kids were after him like a new puppy.

I hung glistening snowflakes from the light fixture above the table
to add to the snowy theme.

When I saw these pails, I had to have them for the shower.
I searched high and low for 22 of these white Target pails.
I had three people purchase them for me, and even had help from a friend in Arizona!
Filling them was the tricky party, but I finally settled on hot cocoa and marshmallows and a couple chocolaty treats.

We played a few games, including this
icebreaker game...
I think I made a few dumb jokes about the ladies preparing to get fast and furious,
and they didn't know what to make of me.  But by the end, an icebreaker it was.

We played the 'Dirty Diaper Game'

and the 'Name that 'Baby' Song game,' where you name the song and the artist of the song with 'baby' in the title.  Oldies are perfect for livening up the group. Ice, Ice, Baby, and Hit Me Baby One More Time are sure to spur a sing-along.

And of course, we showered the honoree with plenty of gifts and love.

It was a lovely afternoon and plenty fun to host!

Maybe in another post, I'll tell you all the things I learned not to do when preparing for the big day.


Sunday, January 9, 2011

sunday is for recovery.

It was a long week and an especially long weekend.

Penguins, pink and pretending to be Martha has me plenty tired,
but I can't wait to share more about the weekend!

Until then, have yourselves a relaxing Sunday...
I'm off to start a new book
and maybe eat the last chocolate fudge cupcake on the counter.

See you tomorrow!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

the little things

I believe I've just began my first series. 
Thursday's 'The Little Things' is a documentation of recent things or moments that have 
moved, excited, stirred, beckoned, or inspired. 
Each thing or moment has pulled on my heart-strings in a special sort of way.

This is the second installment of 'the little things.' 

the reminder of cherry blossoms in the spring.
an morning online Anthropologie browse.
happening upon this Rilke quote--"Perhaps all the dragons of our lives are princesses who are waiting to see us once brave and beautiful" (thank you Sunny Rising Leather).
little brothers who stop in and listen to you vent and fix things.
new lamps.
finishing a book.
friendly strangers.
paper snowflakes.
emails from old friends.
my two and a half year old's laughter during his movie--he is seeming less and less a baby...
bedtime prayers.

Go here for the beginning of 'The Little Things.'

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

a new year

The Christmas lights have come down, the stockings are packed, and the once perfect noble that stood tall, filling our home with the scent that only a fresh-cut tree could, has been tossed to the curb.  A deep-clean is in progress and winter decorations are underway--a perfect way to begin this New Year.

Speaking of New Years, how was yours?  We headed out to the beach, where it was clear, cold and gorgeous, to spend New Year's with family.  We enjoyed Chinese take-out, card games, Toy Story 3, and had a tiny midnight celebration with our little ones.  They're always up for staying up late and love a reason to cheer!  They were especially excited when Husband and I snuggled in to camp on the floor next to them.  New Year's Day we did a clam dig, and returned home to a hot meal {including crab}, lovingly cooked by our Aunt.  It was a wonderful time, and I hope yours was as well.

I'm a believer in New Year's resolutions.  I'm a believer in goals, short-term and long, and sticking to the game plan.  So it is with much enjoyment and satisfaction that I lay out a list of resolutions for 2011!

Here they are in short...

1) 12 books in 12 months.  Four classics.  
Don't get me started on how guilty I feel as a reader. 
2) Start and complete an entire journal for 2011.
3) As a family, move to become self-sustaining in at least one way i.e raise chickens, green roof, fuel, garden and canning.  We're excited for a whole new way of life, come our upcoming move. 
More on this later...!
4) Write, write, write, and finish the story.

I can't wait to see what 2011 unfolds.  I just know it is going to be a wonderful, promising year!

image via weheartit.

“You must write every single day of your life... You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads... may you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.” ― Ray Bradbury
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