February 29, 2012

the great state of texas.

howdy, ya'll ... well that just feels weird, even in print.

i'm in houston again this week. i arrived yesterday morning, and i'll be here until thursday evening. i would be lying if i said i'm full of energy at this moment. weeks like this week and last week, though, make me so thanksful for technology. even if i'm in a completely different state, eight and a half hours away from my home office, i can still connect and keep in touch with all my incredible clients.

i know i get kind of sappy when it comes to you, my clients, but you have no idea just how grateful i am for you. you allow me to make my dream a reality every single day, and for that i will be forever appreciative.

i'll be back tomorrow with more ideas and inspiration. for now, other duties call.


February 28, 2012

the one i laugh with, live for, dream with.

right now i'm working with a super fun bride. she's so laid back and has such a great attitude. most brides are a lot of fun to work with -- everyone is giddy with excitement and ready to start their lives with that "great" love. of course, we do run into bridezillas from time to time, but lindsay is definitely not one of those brides.

she and her special man are getting married in an old farmhouse in delware. for their save-the-dates, they wanted something that fit the color scheme of their wedding. they didn't want the same the date to perfectly coordinate with the wedding invitation and also didn't want anything too fussy.

we created a postcard that fits right in with the farmhouse wedding and also incorporates the rich slate the happy couple will use throughout their wedding.

i really like the front (it's a quote picked out by the bride), but i think my absolute favorite it is the back. i just love everything about it. typically you would also see the return address running along vertical line, but i've masked it for the blog.

i love working with creative individuals -- keeps my life interesting and inspired! =)


February 27, 2012

a {southern} spring time birthday.

apologies for being away so much last week. i had to travel to houston on a business trip for my other job. what started as an overnight trip turned into two nights away from home. i left my house at 5 in the morning on monday ... and didn't return until well after 8 in the evening on wednesday night. the rest of the week was filled with catching up on orders/emails to notably noted clients and doctors appointments.

while last week was pretty crazy, the weekend prior was fabulous! we were celebrating a very special lady in my life -- my mother. my family lives about thirty to forty-five minutes away in muskogee. i don't get to see them as often as i would like, but i'm grateful that we're as closely located to one another as we are -- it could definitely be worse.

on friday night my little sister drove to tulsa to help me prepare everything for the saturday afternoon late-lunch family party we had planned. i realized after everyone left that i never got a picture of the table setting (sad face!) but my mom loved everything. we all had a blast just spending the day together.

below are just a few details from our day:

not the best shot, but who doesn't love hydrangeas? there's something so romantic about them, and they can brighten my mood in an instance.

so many of my ideas for the party came from pinterest. we didn't have a "theme" other than a bright, springy, laid-back, family function. my mom's only request? "lots of yummy, fattening food." enter southern comfort food.

sierra and i made personal pot pies for everyone as the main dish. i knew they would take a little bit to fully bake, and since we were already having a late lunch, i didn't want everyone sitting around feeling hungry all afternoon. appetizers on display include: personal mac & cheese cups, cream filled strawberries, caprese salad skewers, and white-chocolate stuffed raspberries.

you wouldn't believe how delicious these raspberries were!! and so simple! seriously, so good! even my super-picky fiance was eating them by the handfuls.

i don't have a picture, but following appetizers, we had a yummy corn and cheese chowder (picture below from the pioneer woman):

we didn't do the bread bowls, but it was still oh-so-good. i left the bacon out of mine, but imagine that lots of people would enjoy it with the bacon still included. this recipe makes a huge batch, so i was able to enjoy the leftovers all week long (and even sent some home with my parents and aunt).

finally, the main course:

as i mentioned before, sierra and i created personal pot pies for everyone. not only were they in their own ramekins, but the pies also had the first letter of each person's name marking the top of them (with "m" for "mom" and "d" for "dad"). sierra made my mom's extra special by adding hearts to the top of hers as well.

i know i baked this so i shouldn't be bragging, but oh.my.goodness. these were so delicious! i saw my aunt again this past weekend, and she was telling others that it was the best pot pie she had ever had! i was flattered (and secretly agreed). i played with the recipe myself, subsituting a few things i knew wouldn't be crowd pleasers and using rotisserie chicken instead of chicken breasts.

it was hard to choose sides for the pot pies because they were stuffed to the gills with veggies, but the freshly steamed asparagus and green beans were hits as well. again so simple, but so delish.

we were so stuffed we had to wait a bit before digging into dessert, so we did one of my favorite things -- we just sat around visiting. my brother, his wife, their baby, my parents, my sister, one of my mom's sisters (brenda), and travis and i sat around chatting, watching basketball, and enjoying my sweet little nephew.

now, you know i can't have a special occassion without a cake by seana hon. she didn't disappoint. sierra found cheerful, zany candles that went perfectly with our spring paisley/floral print cake -- vanilla on the top and chocolate on the bottom. it was the perfect size, too! 4" & 6" ... not too much, and not too little ... and all so delicious.

happy birthday, mom! we love you so much!!

February 26, 2012

February 25, 2012

party inspiration: the lorax.

i love the parties that spring up with the release of new movies -- especially movies of old classics, like the beloved dr. seuss. i mean, who doesn't like dr. seuss, right? i've not seen the movie {and maybe it's not even out yet} but i'm loving the party ideas that are springing up for the lorax.

i haven't created an invitation yet, but i did create a fun inspiration board. (i told you, ideas are already popping up everywhere!) the first thing i saw that really inspired me to create the board were the truffula trees made from martha stewart's poms. so simple and such a great fit for "the lorax." just remember to make your poms pointed instead of rounded.

i also love the cake ball truffula trees. i found them on pinterst where they were featured by ediblecrafts.craftgossip.com but are actually by bakerella.

i love the idea of cotton candy at a lorax party, so i went on the hunt for a great picture of cotton candy. i came across something even better -- cotton candy cupcakes on pinterest. the colors and whimsy of the cupcake just scream dr. seuss.

i can't wait to design an invitation / party suite to go along with this inspiration board. i want to hear your ideas -- have you hosted a dr. seuss party before?

February 17, 2012

willow house.

i got so used to sharing my favorites during fourteen days of love, that when i ran across this new site, i just had to share with you.

earlier this week a friend introduced me to willow house. have you seen their catalog?? swoon!
for you pinners out there, i could pin just about every single thing they carry. and i love how they style their photos in the catalog. if you haven't looked into it, check it out. pronto.

my friend is hosting an online catalog party so i'm trying to pick out the things i just can't live without (since i should probably refrain from ordering everything). here are just a few of my favorites.

empire flare vase (so gorgeous!)

so let me know, what are a few of your favorites? i really want to know! you can helo me make my decision.

February 16, 2012

ahoy it's a boy!

remember when i said i'm loving all things nautical? well that's still true. =)

i'm working with one of my dear friends on a nautical baby shower for one of her friends who will be a first time mommy in april.

andrea wanted something classic, but playful and not overly whimsical. i absolutely love what we've come up with.

we still have lots to do -- table signs . "ahoy it's a boy!" pennant banner . nautical theme table banner . food tents . thank you cards for baby boy harrison . and straw flags.

i wanted to wait to share the entire package, but i just couldn't wait. i hope you've enjoyed the sneak peek! i'll post more images as the other pieces come together.

February 15, 2012

happy {belated} birthday!

note card created in 2010 as thank you cards to coordinate with the other pieces from my mom's surprise tea party

happy birthday to my sweet, sweet mama and my aunt roberta. while this birthday wish on the blog is a day late, i did remember to reach out to each of these wonderful women yesterday to let them know just how much i love them.

i have such fond memories growing up with both of them in my life and truly believe my life would have turned out so much differently without their influences.

i don't often get to see my aunt and uncle, and i miss them dearly. their house was my favorite place in the world to go as a child {it still is}. i hate that so often we let life get in the way of seeing the people we really love, those people who have made our lives worth living.

i feel especially blessed to have such a great relationship with my mom. when i was in the fourth grade, i heard lyrics that resonated with me. it's a love song from a man to a woman, but the chorus just really reminded me so much of my mom ...

if there hadn't been you, where would i be? if there hadn't been you, here for me
i've made it through times, i never should have made it through
all my dreams would still be dreams, if there hadn't been you

i feel so incredibly blessed to have these very special women in my life and just wanted to honor them with a little post. if you know either of them, be sure to swing by their page to wish them a happy birthday (even if it is a day late).

February 14, 2012

fourteen days of love: day 14.

okay, i know i started my 14 days of love with this same little guy but i was just thinking, how can you not have a great valentine's day with a cute valentine like him? my favorite valentine of all time! the past month and a half has been wonderful getting to know sweet little parker.

whether you're celebrating with a significant other, a girls' night in, a guys' night out or your sweet babies, i wish each and every one of you a very special day filled with love of all kinds.


(also be sure to check out ck fine portraits on facebook)

February 13, 2012

fourteen days of love: day 13.

i absolutely love reading, but it's a luxury i don't often allow myself because my time is always filled with designing, promoting, my other job, family, commuting, the pups, and oh-so-much more.

the day my nephew was born however, was a day spent at a hospital waiting ... and waiting ... and waiting some more. i was so excited to meet him that i didn't mind all the waiting. it also gave me the perfect opportunity to do a little bit of reading.

the hospital we were in didn't have a public internet connection, so when we pulled through the drive-thru to grab everyone food, i whipped out my kindle and downloaded the entire hunger games triology in a matter of three seconds. (i'm amazed at how quickly the kindle downloads!)

i tend to enjoy series because i'm one of those who fall i love with the characters in the book. when their story is over, i feel a little bit of loss in my life. i'm weird. don't judge. =)

i managed to read the entire series in a weekend. i just couldn't put it down. i was so glad i had downloaded the triology so i could go straight from one book into the next. now i can't wait for the movie. from the previews i've seen, i suspect the book will be better than the movie (it usually is), but i hope it does a good job (like harry potter and twilight) did in capturing the essence of the book and its characters.

what should i read next? (and for you procrastinators -- valentine's day is tomorrow ...)

February 12, 2012

fourteen days of love: day 12.

earlier this year, my good friend kate introduced me to root:1 -- a delicious cabernet sauvignon.

it has quickly become a favorite for both of us. i recently discovered they also offer a pinot noir. i haven't tried it yet, but i'm excited to check it out.

in an effort to be healthier this year, i've been saving all my wine savoring for nights when i have friends over, and it's always a hit with my guests.

this past week i heard that cupcake red velvet is a must-try. i haven't had it but am hoping to give it a shot at a wine pull this weekend. and speaking of wine pull, i want something new to share at the event. hit me up with some ideas -- what's your favorite?

oh, and in case you've forgotten, valentine's day is the day after tomorrow!

February 11, 2012

fourteen days of love: day 11.

i really have a thing for two tier cakes. they're so much lovelier than plain-ol' sheet cakes. i especially love cakes by seana hon. they're oh-so-moist and oh-so-delicious -- not your average, every day bakery cake.

i enjoy working with seana because she can transform any cake into a masterpiece to coordinate with invitations i've designed. her cakes are always a hit of the party and stand out front-and-center.

check out a couple of those she has recently done for me:

could those be any cuter? i was amazed at what she did for the OSU cowgirl baby shower. cupcakes and mini-pies have become so popular, but i just can't stop loving these cakes. do you still order cakes for your special events?

February 10, 2012

fourteen days of love: day 10.

by now i've made it clear i have absolutely no aversion to navy or grey. =) i really love anything classic and timeless. i think you'll see that in the shapes and pieces i choose -- whether i'm talking about a bag, a dress, home decor, or paper.

in keeping with that trend, weddings with a similar theme / style make me swoon. don't get me wrong, i love working on trendy, modern, out-of-the-box wedding suites. they're creative and fun and keep me on my toes. nothing takes my breathe away, however, like an elegant black-and-white wedding suite.

Source: etsy.com via Rhiannon on Pinterest

(only four more days to go. if you haven't gotten a gift for your sweetie, you need to do so pronto!)