Oct 17, 2014

Friday five

It's been a busy week for me, both at work and with cupcake orders. I got two orders this week, so Mom and I have been baking all week. But I did manage to find some cuteness on the internet, here are my Friday five:

picture from I Love to Create

1. Fave craft
With Halloween just around the corner, I think I need to make myself this sequin skull shirt.

picture from Delicious Obsessions
2. Fave recipe
I've always wanted to make homemade vanilla extract. Maybe I'll start some to use in my holiday baking.

via Runner's World

3. Fave fitness
I know I'm always struggling with this. Overcoming those nasty mental blocks while running.

via BuzzFeed
4. Fave costume ideas
I'm in costume making mode... and I don't know if it's my Disney kick or what, but I love these Disney costume ideas.

5. Fave thing that is soooo true
17 Secrets Every Target Lover Will Never Tell You. Yes, literally, all of them.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. I'm finishing up another cupcake order and getting in a long run.

Oct 15, 2014

Blue's Clues party

It's party time once again because my niece, Miss V, turned 3! She is an awesome little girl and she specifically asked for a Blue's Clues party. Now if you know, Blue's Clues isn't even on the air anymore, but thanks to the joys of old videos, she's currently hooked on it.

Now what do you do when there are no party supplies in your party theme? Well make them of course! Her momma, Kris and I DIY-ed this party like no one's business.

Kris scoured thrift sites and eBay for anything Blue's Clues, and she found lots of stuff. She got Blue's Clues toys, stuffed animals, a Memory game, and books. She even managed to get a thinking chair! This made the perfect chair for the birthday girl!

We printed TONS of Blue's Clues (aka paw prints) and used them as decorations all over the place. We put them all over the walls and even on the sidewalk coming up to the house. You could tell that Blue was here.

We also used the paws to decorate plain paper bags that were our goodie bags for the kids. They were filled with candy, bubbles and even a handy dandy notebook and crayons for each kid.

It's also really handy that Eddie, Miss V's dad, is a great artist. He drew the invite (which is above) and also a welcome poster for the front door. We had to let people know it was party time...

He also drew a pin the clue on Blue game (which we totally forgot about playing...). Isn't Blue so cute?

And I had to make cupcakes. The ever demanding Miss V told me she needed blue cupcakes for the boys and magenta cupcakes for the girls. Who was I to deny her? I baked up vanilla and milk chocolate cupcakes in blue and magenta wrappers and frosted them with blue and magenta buttercream.

Kris got a bounce house for extra fun and the party was set.

Miss V and her brother, X, had a great time at the party, and so did everyone else. Can't you tell by those crazy faces?!

Needless to say just cause your theme is obscure doesn't mean you can't have a great birthday party. With a little imagination and some quick DIYs, you can make any party as awesome as you can make it.

Oct 6, 2014

Handmade Halloween

When Halloween rolls around for me it means picking out that costume and making it. My friends have asked me over the years why I don't just buy a costume, but buying a costume just doesn't feel like part of the holiday.

I was everything over the years....

a cheerleader,

a pumpkin,

a cavegirl, and so many more...

And this was the year, Mom tells me, that I insisted on a store-bought costume. Anyone else remember those terrible masks?

Since I was a little girl, Halloween was always a handmade holiday. I remember going to the fabric store and pouring over the pattern catalog until I found just the right costume. I'm thankful that Mom and Grandma were my costume magicians, making anything I wanted appear. Now that I can make my own costumes, I still love picking just the right one, and making it. It just feels right to me. Going to the store for a packaged costume is just not an option.

Anyone else have handmade costumes back in the day? How about now? Any ideas for this Halloween?

Oct 3, 2014

Friday five

It's not technically Friday, but the day got really busy for me. A day late, but here are my faves from this week:

picture from Sugar Bee crafts
1. Fave craft
This simple knotted fabric headband is cute and would be great to keep all my hair outta my face.

picture from A Beautiful Mess
2. Fave recipe
I've been dying to try cronuts, and A Beautiful Mess came to the rescue with their recipe for homemade cronuts.

via the Runner Box
3. Fave fitness
Anyone tried Runner Box yet? I think I may order one. I'm a sucker for running stuff.

via Remodelaholic
4. Fave decorating idea
Love the idea of these closet offices. Might be an option for my new guest room.

5. Fave TV show
This new show is one of my faves this season, watch How to Get Away with Murder.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sep 26, 2014

Friday five

The weekend is finally here again! It's still raging summer here in South Florida, so I may try to get a little sun and pool time before it gets to cold to go in. Here are this weeks five:

picture from Restoration Redoux
1. Fave craft
I need to start saving my wine corks wot make these awesome wine cork letters.

2. Fave recipe
This week it's been my own Irish Car Bomb cupcakes. They were a hit at my new office!

via Yurbuds

3. Fave fitness
I just ordered some new Yurbuds for my runs (I got a new pair with a mic). I love these headphones and they totally don't slip out when you run. It takes a little getting used to putting these over regular earbuds, but it's so worth it.

via Nerdist
4. Fave TV show (this week at least)
I love fairy tales and I just love the way that all my favorite fairy tale characters are re-imagined on Once Upon a Time. The series premiere is this Sunday, so catch up with their stories in this article first.

picture from A Beautiful Mess
5. Fave makeup tips
These makeup tips from A Beautiful Mess are easy and just a little something to make your look pop!

I'm running another 10 miles this week, so wish me luck. I'll be up before the sun for that run!

Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Sep 24, 2014

New look for designed by Diana!

I had been toying with a new look for designed by Diana for a while now. I loved my previous logo, but I felt it was too much about the aprons. Though I still love my retro aprons, I feel that I've expanded to so many other things. I didn't want to be boxed in as the apron girl, when I'm also the baking girl, and the running girl.

Thankfully with FL Blog Con looming, it gave me the jump start I needed to get moving with a design overhaul for designed by Diana.

I know I wanted something clean and simple, just highlighting designed by Diana. I've been on a green kick lately, and I love me some grey, so I went out hunting.

Luckily Danielle over at Sometimes Sweet had recently redone her blog with one of the templates from 17th Avenue Designs. I visited their site after seeing Danielle's clean simple new layout and fell in love. This is exactly the kind of things I was looking for. And installing this template would be a LOT easier than trying to figure this all out myself, as I had in the past.

I went over to the site, found a great template and a few add-ons that I knew would make my site feel more me. I'm loving the result!

How do you like the new designed by Diana?

(NOTE: I was not compensated for this nor did I receive my template for free. I just really loved it.)

Sep 22, 2014

FL Blog Con 2014

It was my second year attending the FL Blog Con, and once again, I left full of information and totally inspired to get out there and make my blog work. This year's theme was "Gotta Get Blogging" and that's exactly what I wanted to do as soon as I left.

The keynote was from Ted Murphy of IZEA. I had seen some flyers and mention of IZEA at last year's blog con, but was so grateful to get a look at the start of the company, and how they are trying to help bloggers like us.

Then I was off to my first session, photography with Julie Deily of The Little Kitchen. I learned overall that lighting matters, sometimes you just don't like you pics, and above all, edit. And in the end practice, practice. practice, you can only get better.

Next I attended the writing workshop with Adam Avitable. Another great session, where we learned the importance of editing.

Unfortunately, it was a very rainy day in Orlando, but the gloominess only moved lunch and the after party inside. It was a little cramped, and took a little longer than usual to get food, but I did really like the Tijuana Flats for lunch. I was so happy to see them using a local company. And I love me some Mexican food.

Since the lunch time was all messed up and took longer than planned, I wasn't able to make it to any of the lunch sessions. But I did check out all of the great sponsors in the Florida Dairy Farmers lounge. (And I might have had some ice cream.)

After lunch, I got tons of business info from Heather Lopez about Turning from Hobby to Business. Then I went to the Monetizing Your Blog session, which was a great panel that included 3 different companies (Crystal from IZEA, Brandon from Affiliate Manager, and Matthew from Sonobi)  that help bloggers and social media influencers get with brands and get compensated. (I got too into this session, cause I didn't take any pics!)

One of the surprises sessions for me was the Instagram session. Nicole Siscaretti of Sparkly Ever After was great, fun, and so excited to share her Instagram knowledge. If you're not following my Instagram, do it now!

Then we learned all about Pecha Kucha in the closing keynote. It's so interesting and such a cool way to communicate.

We got a pecha kucha demo from Katy Widrick. Had to laugh along with her 10 Secrets Only Bloggers Really Know About Blogging.

I love going to this event. It leaves me inspired to share and do even more here on my little corner of the internet. And it's great being with like minded people. My bestie, Kris, is toying with the idea of starting a blog so this was a great place for her to get her feet wet with the whole thing. And see the type of crazy I'm involved in.

I even ended up meeting some South Florida peeps there. I'd love to have a blogger meetup here in the 305, so any Miami-Dade bloggers, hit me up, so we can meet up and chat.