Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A Twist on Traditional Pumpkin Carving

I love traditional pumpkin carving for the ability to light up the inside with candles and scoop out the pumpkin seeds for baking, but it's a messy job and a little too dangerous for the wee ones! So I was looking at some ideas for alternative pumpkin decorating, and found some wonderfully creative ideas out there!

Most of these I chose because they are unique and look easy enough to duplicate!

With some basic paint and craft store supplies, you can come up with any of these funny faces or make your own.  Be inspired!

For this squirmy pumpkin caterpillar, you can use all paints or glue on the spots with paper or felt circles. Easy to duplicate and looks super cute! (Source: taloolakids)

Simple and fun designs made with tacks, paint, and white first-aid tape!
(Source: kixcereal)

If you're looking for a trendier design, go for chevron! Easy to create with paint and tape for straight lines. Looks great indoors or out!
(Source: My Sweet Savannah)

Since Frankie is our personal favorite, I love this design! And with just a little paint, easy to recreate! Use your imagination and make a few of his friends too!


Lastly, available at your local craft store, pick up some metallic and glitter paints, and mix and match designs and colors! You can make these as simple or artistic as you like!
(Source: zuuzstyle)

Enjoy your Halloween preparation, however you choose, and have a happy day!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Autumn Inspiration

I'm always inspired by the seasons, each in its own unique way. Autumn, with its colors and cooler weather, brings inspiration for orange hues in home d├ęcor, cool hikes in colorful landscapes, and warm and comforting foods!

Enjoy these autumn-inspired photos, and tell me, what inspires you?

Source: http://inspirations.prestonbailey.com/2010/09/30/an-autumn-ceremony/
Source: http://ideastodecor.com/autumn-inspiration-for-your-table-1/autumn-inspiration-for-your-dining-table-image/



Have a happy day and share your inspiration!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Whew! Busy Gift Basket Makers - See What's New

Here we are mid-month and it's been a busy time!

On a personal note I started off the month with a visit to Indianapolis to visit my brother and sister-in-law and spend a day at my niece's school.  Claire is in first grade and had grandparents' day on October 4th. She has only one grandparent still living, who (unfortunately for Claire, but fortunately for her), is on a river cruise in Europe! Well, it was fortunate for me too! I got to be Claire's stand-in grandparent, and it was truly a special day!

Now, on to the business news! Many of you have probably seen my persistent promotions in Facebook for our place in the Intuit Small Business Big Game contest! Thanks to all who voted for us, we've made it through Round 2 and will soon hear if we make it to the top 20 finalists in Round 3.

As much as I am determined to be in the top 20, I know it's a wee bit of a long shot given there are thousands of other awesome companies in the contest! As my husband, Ken, says, it's all about the ride. We had a great time putting together our video, (which I will post here and on our website after the Round 2 contest judging), and petitioning all of our friends and customers for votes. It's a great experience to take on whether you make it all the way or not! A special thank you to my dear friend, Sylvia Springer for her work on the video!

Along with the contest, we've also been working on redesigning our website.  It's been on our road map for a long time and I'm thrilled to have it complete!  Thanks to our design team at
E-cart Customs for their creativity and hard work! Take a look and send us your feedback or leave a comment here.  Would love to know what you think!

Have a happy day and stay tuned for more exciting things coming in the weeks ahead!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A Roundup of the Best Homemade and Decorated Cookies

I am very much in a cookie state of mind!  First off, my husband and I are currently on a diet so cookies are a forbidden pleasure, which makes me think about them and dream about them way more than the average person! Secondly, yesterday was Homemade Cookie Day, so I had it going on all over Facebook.  Thirdly, I am on point to make some very special cookies for the sweet table at my niece's wedding in 3 weeks.  If all that isn't cookie pressure!

So I've given into the temptation of those way more than average thoughts and dreams and have scoured the web for the most enticing and tasteful cookies I could find! Now I'm inspired to get through my diet and have my first indulgence, and to make the most beautiful and tasty cookies for that very special table on October 25th!

Enjoy viewing these, and if you are inspired enough to try them, please let us know your results (comments and pictures please!)

These Chocolate Rolled Cookie Hearts, decorated in my niece's wedding colors, would be perfect!

Courtesy of glorioustreats.com

Or these Hand Painted Valentine Cookies would look beautiful on a wedding sweets table!

Courtesy of glorioustreats.com
Then there are always Classic Snickerdoodle Cookies
(I might just make these immediately following this dumb diet!)
Courtesy of BHG.com

Another favorite and a lovely look for the sweets table, these French Filled Macaroons are a definite consideration!

Courtesy of BHG.com

And for the kid and chocolate lover in all of us, I would totally go for these S'more Cups!

Courtesy of texascottage.com
(My final two selections are heart shapes again, since I'm in wedding cookie mode.)
The first, Linzer Sandwich Cookies, have always been a favorite of mine for Christmas.
Courtesy of wilburroad.com

And, saving the best for last, these Salted  Chocolate Cinnamon Shortbread Hearts sound amazing!
These, I will be making for sure!

Courtesy of makeitgiveit.com
Enjoy and have a happy day!