Monday, June 30, 2014

How To: Wishing Tree

We decided we wanted to do something different for our wedding guest book. I love the idea of having a special way to remember those who shared the day with us. I didn't want to have a book that would be tucked away after the big day and scarcely looked at. I searched for an idea that could be incorporated into our theme and decor. My mom and one of my sweet bridesmaids helped me create a "wishing tree" :) 

It turned out perfectly! Our reception was held in a large room, so it really added height to the decor. I also loved giving guests the opportunity to write more than just their names. It was so fun to read everyone's notes when we got home from our honeymoon. Now we enjoy our tags on the wall in our living room!









To make the tree...

You will need:
3- 30-36" branches
2 cans of metallic gold spray paint
1 can of gold glitter spray paint
12-14" deep planter
3 bags of plaster
1 large bag of Spanish moss
Hot glue gun
paint stick to stir

1. Be sure to choose branches that are not brittle and snap at the touch. If you cut fresh branches, let them dry out for a few days before use. 

2.  Following the instructions provided with your plaster, carefully mix it inside your planter. I tried mixing the plaster in a bucket first, but it dried too quickly. Mix one bag, and insert your branches as desired while plaster is wet. Have a friend hold the branches in place as you add the last two bags. This can be tricky and messy! Have wet rags or paper towels on hand to wipe off any excess that may splash on the sides of the planter before it dries. Also, be sure to remove your ring for this process. ;)

3. Once the plaster is firm enough for the branches to stand alone, bring your tree out to an open airy area. Spray the branches with 2 even coats of gold spray paint. Hold the can 8-10 inches away, and spray from different angles. Apply a final coat using your glitter spray paint. Let dry overnight.

4. Complete your tree by gluing Spanish moss around the base to cover the plaster.

I couldn't believe how quickly branches could be transformed into a beautiful glittering tree. Stay tuned for a tutorial on how I made the tags for my wishing tree!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

You Are What You Eat

I have been struggling with acne ever since I cut soy out of my diet. This past year, it has been worse than ever. I have tried different face cleansers, and even tanning. I decided the problem must be connected to diet have been determined to find a natural solution, so I started to cut sugar out of my diet. 
Smoothie with fruit, veggies, flax seed, and coconut milk
A few weeks ago, while I was in North Carolina, I was struggling with stomach aches and bloating. I decided it was time to see how a real change in diet would affect how I look and feel. 

After 2 weeks, my skin has cleared up, I have lost 4 pounds, and I feel much better! I am doing my own variation to the Whole30 Program. Here's what I've done....

Cut out...
Sugar
Gluten
Dairy (except yogurt)
White Potatoes
Peanuts
...and soy of course :)

This seems like a lot, but there are still plenty of choices. I am still eating...
Yogurt
Rice
Corn chips
Oatmeal
Eggs
honey
Olive Oil
Coconut Oil
Coconut Milk
Sweet Potatoes
Spices
Condiments
And, the obvious, meat, fruits, vegetables, and nuts. 

I thought I'd have a hard time getting full and finding things to eat, but it has been super easy! I wanted to share a few of my meals from the last 2 weeks. :) **Some of the photos show white potatoes...those are for my husband, I gave them all to him, promise. ;)
Oatmeal with fruit, honey, and cinnamon
Barbecue Chicken on lettuce with sweet potatoes
Veggie and Chicken Stir Fry
Taco salad with Salsa
Lazy Sunday Casserole...AMAZING! Recipe here
Hamburger wrapped in lettuce
Chicken Tortilla Soup
I haven't stuck to my diet perfectly, but I am convinced more than ever, "you are what you eat". We'll see how long I stick with it, but even if it doesn't last, I think I will always be more conscious of what I am putting in my body now! I'll share more meal ideas as I go. If you have any good recipes, please share, I am always looking for more!




Saturday, June 21, 2014

College Graduation Party

 Happy first day summer! The last month has been quote the graduation season. My sister and a few friends graduated from High School while I was visiting NC, and my husband graduated with a Bachelor's Degree from Utah Valley University! I could not be more proud of Wes! It took a lot of work to keep up with his classes during our first year of marriage while working 2 jobs, but he pushed through and did it. :) I am loving that he has free time after work and on the weekends now!

To celebrate my man's achievement, I decided to try to surprise him with a graduation party. I didn't realize how hard this guy is to surprise! ;) But, with much help from friends and family, we pulled it off! From a sweet couple who opened their home for the party to helping cook to distracting Wes, I couldn't have done it without them!
 

 I wanted to keep a low budget, especially to keep Wes from asking too many questions about what I was up to! For decor, I used...
Mason Jars
Chalkboard
Scrabble Tiles
Old photos
Wes' Textbooks

 

 

 


 I tried to incorporate things Wes enjoys like candy, games, cookies, and cream soda.



 I love how inspirational some of Dr. Suess' quotes are...perfect for grads!







 

 It was so fun to walk through the door with Wes as he found his friends and family gathered to celebrate! And when he thought the surprise was over, Wes' sister, Shannon showed up from PA. :)

 

My favorite part of the party, was the "Smart Cookie" station. Wes' mom and a few friends were so sweet to make different cookies! There was no way I could make so many cookies at home without spoiling the secret.


Another friend tied tassels on each bottle of cream soda...so cute!


 So glad we went with a taco bar, simple but delicious!




Congratulations 2014 graduates!







Thursday, June 12, 2014

How To for Father's Day: Corkboard Coasters

Father's Day is this weekend! Are you ready? It's always a challenge to decide on gifts for my Dad. I would never know how to pick out some of those items Dad's enjoy like power tools or tech-no-gadgets. However, my Dad and I do share a love for NBA Basketball. And of course, the San Antonio Spurs! Are you watching this game right now!?

Last Father's day while my mom, siblings, and I were deciding on something special for our Dad, we came up with custom made, Spurs themed coasters! My Dad has an amazing desk in his office. He is often, with big ole coffee mug in hand, searching for a coaster large enough to put down to protect his work surface. These cork board coasters are simple and personal to make, but still practical and purposeful!

You will need:
Approx. 1/4 in thick cork board squares
Sharpie
Exact-o knife
Wide rimmed mug or cup
Craft paint
Paint brush
Modge Podge
Foam brush

1. Trace the wide rim of your mug and cup onto the cork board with a sharpie. Trace 4-5 circles, depending on how many coasters you want.



 2. Perforate the cork board along your outline with an Exact-o knife.


 3. Carefully poke your circles out of the board.


 4. Using Craft paint, paint any designs you wish on your coasters. I painted the top, bottom, and edges. Allow to dry. We each created a design, so the set was from all of us!





 5. Seal your coasters top, bottom, and edges with a coat of Modge Podge. This will protect the paint if the coasters get wet!


6. I love the way these look once the finish dries!


 This was such a fun gift to make together and give! There is so much flexibility of design with these coasters, I made a set for our living room as well. ;)


What are you doing for your Dad? Its hard not to be home, but glad I was there to see my Dad a few weeks ago! I hoping he gets to see his Spurs win for Father's Day. :)

New Design!

I am loving my new blog design by Lindsey at Hello Hydrangea! It turned out even better than I had hoped. Lindsey was so great to work with. She answered my many questions, was easy to correspond with, and captured my vision perfectly! Be sure to check out her darling blog and shop by clicking on her logo below. Thanks so much Lindsey. :)

http://www.hellohydrangea.com/

Some of my favorite aspects of this new layout are:

1. Menu Bar: Complete with updated tabs!
2. Social Media Icons: These are so cute. Let's connect if we haven't already :)
3. Categories: These labels make it so easy to navigate around the site. Just click on the category you're interested in, and all the relative posts will be in a feed together!

Ok, and can we talk about the logo!? I'm smitten!

One more thing, you can now share any posts or pin an idea to one of your Pinterest boards for later by clicking the media icons at the end of the post. 

Thanks for your patience during construction this week, its good to be back. :)

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Raindrops on Roses Design Update

Hello Friends! I just got back from a visit in NC for my sister's graduation. It was a wonderful time, and I can't wait to share more about it, but for now....


Raindrops on Roses is receiving a brand new design! I am so excited for the design to be revealed! I just wanted to give you a heads up, that over the next few days, Raindrops on Roses will undergo a brief period of construction, so things may seem a little out of sorts. I'll keep you posted on the Facebook page and Instagram as to when everything is complete. Stay tuned!