12 Easy St. Patrick’s Day Ideas

St. Patrick's Day Because I still feel like it is January (probably due to the fact that I can’t get my life together enough to finish writing out my 2014 goals…le sigh….) I thought I had all the time in the world to develop some of my St. Patrick’s Day ideas until I looked at a calendar and realized it was a mere 3 days away. Of course, I could blame my birthday or the new work projects I’ve taken on, but let’s be honest, it’s probably just my horrible time management skills. So I, along with the rest of the universe, will be letting Pinterest decide what I should be making and eating for St. Patrick’s Day. Here are some of the things Pinterest decided on (ok, ok, I pinned them but you know what I mean!)-

Jazz up your shoes with these DIY pom pom shoe clips

Macarons, Baileys and Chocolate…I couldn’t think of a better combination

What holiday doesn’t need a little dose of glitter to help celebrate it?

The cutest pinatas I’ve ever seen

An easy way to add some festive decor to your house 

This cake has 6, count ‘em, 6 layers! Yes please!

Scrolling through these festively attired St. Patrick’s Day pets had me dying with laughter

Beer and cheese is a flavor combo you simply can’t go wrong with, especially if it’s a dip

This Irish blessing has always been a favorite quote of mine

The perfect shade of green nail polish for St. Patty’s Day

I will never turn down a blizzard, especially not one that looks this good

These cheesy biscuits are the perfect accessory to any St. Patty’s Day dinner

Don’t forget to follow my St. Patrick’s Day Pinterest board for lots more fun and festive ideas!

DIY Valentine’s Day Cards 2014

homemade valentine's day card Coming up with new and exciting Valentine’s Day cards each year is not an easy task. There are so many fantastic and creative options out there. Instead of trying to totally reinvent the wheel, I have found that getting a few new supplies can be just what you need to get crafty. This year, with only the help of a new stamp (bought at Michael’s for just $1.00), I was able to create a pretty Valentine’s Day card by reworking and re-imagining some of the supplies I already had on hand.

how-to make a valentine's day card valentine's day card supplies

Supplies
Card Stock
Tissue Paper
Stamp & Ink
Baker’s Twine
Mini Clothespins (I spray painted mine gold)
Washi Tape (or glue)
Scissors

Valentine's  Day Crafts 1. Cut a small square of card stock. Stamp the design of your choice on to the square and set aside.

gold washi tape 2. Fold another piece of card stock into the shape and size card that you want. I used half of a sheet folded long ways. Next, measure and cut a piece of baker’s twine that is long enough to drape across the front. Wrap the ends of the twine around to the back of the card and secure with washi tape (or glue, if you don’t have the tape).

DIY valentine's day cards 2014 3. Cut a piece of tissue paper that is slightly bigger than the card with the design on it.

Valentine's Day Crafting 4. Use one of the mini clothespins to secure the two pieces of paper to the baker’s twine on the front of the card.

DIY Valentine's Day Card 5. Write words of love and mail to your family and friends!

Shop Card Making Supplies

Rum Balls

Rum Balls

If my middle school chocolate loving self and my college rum loving self were to have created a cookie, these rum balls very well could have been the result. I mean, can it get any better than eating your alcohol disguised as a cookie made from chocolate? I’m going to go with probably not. And since I know you agree with me, here is the recipe (as promised in today’s morning post).

P.S. These are one of the easiest Christmas cookies to make and they also work really well as a last-minute Christmas gift…if you have any left ;)

Rum Balls Christmas Cookie

Rum Balls

1 1/2 cups crushed chocolate wafers (about 30 cookies)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/4 cup corn syrup
3 tablespoons dark rum
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
Powdered sugar for dusting

 

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Use your hands to thoroughly mix all ingredients (you’re going to be getting down and dirty in this step!) until the ingredients are sticking together (and probably sticking to your fingers). Roll the dough into 1″ balls, then roll them in powdered sugar. Store in an air tight container.

Notes:

  • For the chocolate wafers, I use the Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers, which can usually be found in the ice-cream section of your grocery store. They are somewhat difficult to track down so I’ve substituted with other chocolate wafers or other wafer flavors such as Anna’s Orange Thins.
  • To grind both the crackers and the nuts, I have found a cuisinart to work best.

A family recipe

Christmas Cookies 2013

Christmas Cookies The amount of time (or, I should probably say lack there of) between Thanksgiving and Christmas has really thrown me for a loop as far as preparing for the holidays is concerned. We’re still putting the finishing touches on our decorating, and while I normally make a large variety of Christmas cookies, we only had time to make a few this year.

When I was younger, I remember my Mom’s Christmas cookie list extended a couple pages…and then some. My sister and I would help her pick which ones from the list we should bake. Apparently, one year, my idea of picking was to basically copy the whole list onto another sheet of paper (yes, I wanted to make ALL the cookies…that should not surprise you!). I’m sure my (sad/angry/pouty) reaction to my Christmas cookie list getting cut was the same then as it was when I had to cut my list this year. Just like the Christmas cookies we bake every year, some things never change….

Russian Tea Cake Cookies Russian Tea Cakes

Russian Tea Cakes have always been a staple Christmas cookie in my family. Not a Christmas goes by where a batch (or 2…or 3) of these aren’t made.

Rum Balls

Rum Balls Christmas Cookies

Rum Balls look like chocolate donut holes, but taste waaaaaay better than any chocolate donut I’ve ever had….obviously because there is rum in them. Chocolate + rum= cookie! Since I know you can’t say ‘No’ to that combo, get the recipe here and go whip up a batch ASAP!

Thumbprint Christmas Cookies

Thumbprint cookies

Thumbprints aren’t a Christmas cookie that’s on my “have to have them” list, but the Mr. requested them and when he suggested filling some with cookie butter and nutella, along with the traditional jelly filling, I couldn’t say no. And now that they’re baked, I still can’t seem to say no….(I think I’m going to need to add a pair of sweatpants to my Christmas list).

Sugar Cookies Sugar Cookies for Christmas Sugar Cookies

Sugar Cookies are another Christmas cookie that I don’t always feel compelled to make but for the sake of simplicity (and to test out our new cookie cutters) they made the cut on this year’s cookie list. I had visions of piling on frosting and sprinkling on pretty decorations, but again simplicity won out, and I just drizzled them with a glaze and tossed on a few festive sprinkles. This recipe makes some delicious cookies, and goes to show, that simple can taste just as good as fancy.

Have you done any Christmas cookie baking? Are there any family recipes, or special cookies that you make every year?

My NYC- Christmas in the City

Christmas Lights in NYC

I could live in NYC forever, if only for how beautiful Christmas time is here. There really isn’t much to say other than it’s glistening, sparkly and magical (case in point-the above picture I took last year outside Bergdorf’s). If you haven’t experienced it, put it on your life priority list ASAP.

Radio City

Christmas in NYC

Here are some of my favorite things to do in the city during this festive time of year-

To See

To Eat

What I’m Looking Forward to Trying This Year….

What are your favorite holiday activities where you live?