Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello everyone,

I guess everyone will be busy today preparing for hosting or being guests. I wanted to share our dinner table setting for this Thanksgiving. We got this new table from ZGallerie and I am head over heals happy about it, especially since we were able to get it at 60% reduction, including delivery. It has a tiny damage at the corner of one of its extensions, hence the discount, but I don't really mind it for that price. We still need to find chairs for it, but we are using the old chairs and a bench right now. Since we were able to get it delivered just in time for Thanksgiving, here is the first styling of this table for Thanksgiving dinner.

I used a cake stand as center piece to hold some fall decorations and a couple of mercury votive holders. Using my SLICE machine I cut some fall leaves using orange scrapbook paper and wrote some things we are thankful for this year. I rolled napkins and tied them with rope and added a black painted wood cutouts and wrote each person's name using chalk marker. Added washi tape flags to straws and wrote the words BE THANKFUL on each side of the flag.

Here is how it looked, loaded with food.

We are not into big turkeys so we just get a little chicken and keep the rest vegetarian.

Some of the items on the menu, clockwise - Roasted Cornish Hen, Mushroom Ravioli with Marsala cream sauce, Orange Koolaid with Pellegrino, Cheddar Bay biscuits, Stuffed mushrooms, Goat Cheese stuffed sweet peppers, Green salad with Strawberries, Candied walnuts & orange-balsamic glaze, Brazilian Flan.  We also had Green bean Casserole & Packaged organic Tomato Bisque soup that were not pictured. Linked the recipes I used.

I am definitely going to look forward for opportunities to set this table more often now. Happy Thanksgiving.

Sources of some of the items you see in this post:

Dining table - Archer Dining table from Z Gallerie ($560 including delivery)
Bench - from a flash sale on Joss & Main (around $250)
Chairs - from old dining table
Bar in the corner - Floor model from Crate & Barrel 4 years ago (around $200)
Glittered Pumpkin - ZGallerie clearance item (70% off of $19.99)
Mercury votives/vases - ZGallerie ($5 each)
Orange Fall leaf cutouts - Scrapbook paper cut using SLICE machine
Pine Cones - Thrift store ($0.25 each)
Square Cake stand - Homegoods ($14.99)
Napkins - World Market ($9.95)
Black Wood plates - Michaels ($0.35 each)
Straw Flags - made using Washi tape

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving Feast. We sure did. After much needed rest, we shall start preparing for the best holiday of the year - Christmas!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Simple Thank You Gifts for Teachers

Of all the things we are Thankful for this year, having great teachers at my daughter's preschool is definitely in the top few. Though we have been fortunate to have good daycare experience mostly, we have had our share of stressful situations while finding interim care while our trusted caregiver was on long vacation. So we were very worried about how she would like the preschool and thankfully her teachers made the transition effortless for her as well as for us. I am still amazed everyday when I see how excited she is to go to school. So I wanted to send a small Thank You gift for her teachers. Here is what I put together.

A magnetic notepad with teacher's initial from Michaels, couple of mechanical pencils and a Thank You card from dollar section of Target and a small package of See's Candies. I wrote a personal Thank You letter in each card.

I also added leaf tags to the gift bags that I cut with my handy dandy SLICE machine. I got that machine for $20 on clearance at Michaels couple of years ago. They were getting rid of SLICE products so stocked up on as many design cards as I could find for $5 each and some other products to go with the machine. I use this machine from time to time for parties and gifts. I would love to get my hands on a Silhouette but I can't justify its price tag with my limited usage. So this works for now. I stamped it with a Thank You stamp that I found at Target dollar section.

No traditional Fall colors, just used the gift bags I had on hand and went with the colors in it to decorate the bag. 

I haven't seen many Teachers' gifts posts on blogland for Thanksgiving. Is it not usual? Maybe not, but we are grateful to them so I wanted to show my gratitude with these little gifts.

Thanksgiving is tomorrow. Is everybody prepping already? I am still planning the menu. We have a new table (sneak peak in the photos above, it's wood), so I am excited to set it for dinner tomorrow. I will try to post the pictures tomorrow.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Baby Shower Gift Idea - another Pregnancy Journal

Happy Monday! You may have seen the first Pregnancy Journal I made for a dear friend last year.

I loved it so much, I made another one few weeks ago as a baby shower gift. I wanted to give some unique gift that the mom-to-be doesn't end up returning/exchanging because she received too many of them. Seriously, how many onesies, baby blankets, baby toys does a mom-to-be receive at baby shower? I don't blame anyone, there is not much choice. Just a handful of stores and brands for baby items. So I decided to put my newly acquired sewing skills to use and made some burp cloths, which I will show you in a following post, a handmade pregnancy journal and just in time Sada from Casa de Lewis posted about Milestone cards, they were so cute I had to order a pack. I ordered from an online shop called Brimful. They were fast in shipping without charging a fortune.

Now what I used to make the Pregnancy Journal.

SN@P Binder from Michaels
Project Life Mini Kit - Baby Edition for Him
SN@P page inserts that go with SN@P binders
Baby Boy & Pregnancy themed Scrapbook stickers from Michaels and Jo Ann's
Assorted scrapbook paper from Michaels and Jo Ann's
Spray adhesive from Michaels

Here is how it turned out.

I made a little label of MOM's name using alphabet stamps.

This page for any note that mom wants to write. May be something like 'This is a journal of my journey towards parenthood'

 This page for When they found out, Whom they shared the news with first etc.

Some pictures of mom-to-be at the time and may be a picture of the happy couple.

Details during first trimester. I love the Project Life cards. They are standard size cards so you don't have to just use them in their huge Binders with inserts. They can be used for just about anything like love notes, lunch box notes, thank you cards, to send hand written messages to friends and family out of town, in any non-Project Life scrapbook…. endless possibilities. 

First ultrasound picture of the baby and a callout to write a fun message as if the baby was saying Hello.

2nd Trimester - Finding the gender of baby, cravings etc.

Names in consideration for the baby (another ProjectLife card). Mom-to-be's picture with due date.

3rd Trimester - What mommy is thinking, Baby shower details.

Another page for baby shower details, waiting for the baby.

Details of Labor and Birth, First picture of little bundle of joy.

Few inserts that came with the binder filled with Project Life cards (they are standard size cut outs so these cards fit in perfectly) for writing letter to baby, birth story, list of visitors, prices of common baby items/ groceries when baby is born (fun stuff to look at after few years) etc. They can replace these cards with some pictures/ birth portraits. I added some colorful washi tape strips just because.

That wraps the tour of this awesome pregnancy journal. Honestly, I am so happy every time I see the pictures of these pregnancy journals and get a little sad that I didn't make one for my daughter :( May be that is the reason I love to make these for friends so they don't miss it like me. I really wish to see one filled out. That will make it worth million times to see it actually used.

I hope I inspired some of you to make one for your future pregnancies or make them as gifts to your loved ones. Have a great week! Thanksgiving is just around the corner. I have to get teacher gifts ready and plan the big dinner.

Sharing this at The DIY'ers and Wow us Wednesdays @ Savvy Southern Style

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Repurposed Changing Table

Remember the changing table that I updated by adding shelf liners using wrapping paper?

Since the kid has grown and potty trained, I didn't need this in our bedroom anymore. I have been waiting for this time to change it into storage for my craft supplies. Finally I could. Here is how it is housing all my craft items.

I love how I can see all the supplies vs stored behind cabinet doors. I might just put my sewing machine on the top rack too, just concerned about all the weight it is holding right now. I did not designate the bins yet. Labeling them will make it even more functional, but for now, this is much better than what I had before. I got the best use of this little piece, especially for the $20 I paid for it.

Source list:

Blue and Yellow bins: Target Dollar section
Clear Scrapbook boxes: Michaels
Small Pink bins: Target Dollar section
Basket: Target - Nate Berkus Collection
Big Bins: Threshold storage bins from Target

Monday, November 4, 2013

Kids Meal 3

School Lunch & Snack: Upma (Porridge made with suji/semolina, Indian wheat product) with green peas, peeled and sliced Pear, Cheese slices, Teddy Grahams, Cheese crackers, Parle G cookies, Almond Bar (made with dry milk and almond meal).

Halloween week series - Missed Day 4 & 5

Hello people, hope everyone had a great Halloween. Ours wasn't as planned. My baby fell sick at school on Halloween and had to rush to hospital so it wasn't fun. Hence the missing days in my Halloween series. She is a good sport though, she wanted to put her costume on after seeing all the Trick or Treaters coming home that night. So I guess this post can be the Day 5 -  Highlights of the TERRORific day, only couple of days late.