May 2014 archive

DIY Just Died. Welcome to The Maker Movement

Makers Okay, maybe DIY isn’t dead but it definitely has grown up a bit. DIYers have been at it for over a decade — crafting and creating new things, making something out of nothing, reinventing old things into new. On the blogs we read this typically shows itself in ways of fabulous party garland, a new way to display your jewelry or a sophisticated typography print just waiting for you to download. In a parallel (yet equally thriving world), a culture of garage tinkers and hackspace inhabitants have been head-down making things too. New products that solve every day problems and innovating products that have existed for centuries, giving them an upgrade. They’ve been making things; just like DIYers have been.

Despite the clear similarities between the DIY and Tinkerer communities we have (until recently) been living in different realms. In fact, I would argue each group wouldn’t have wanted to identify with the other before — as they have historically seen themselves very different from each other; one side “craft” and the other “tech.” How many DIYers attended the Maker Faire in 2009? Likewise, how many garage tinkerers opened up an Etsy shop in 2009? Exactly. Not until the past few years have these world began to merge into what we are now calling the Maker Movement. But why now? Makers make things (more…)

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Surprise Backyard Picnic

Picnic party ideas :: Thoughtfully Simple

This weekend, I was looking for a little way to carve out some special time with my youngest girl. The weather was perfect so I thought a surprise backyard picnic would be a fun way to spend a little one-on-one time together. Have a backyard picnic

Picnic party ideas :: Thoughtfully SimpleI filled up some pink and yellow balloons to give our picnic spot a little extra touch. I printed and attached the words “let’s have a backyard picnic” to one of the strings. When my daughter spotted the balloons, it put a huge smile on her face!

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Inspired :: Dinner Party Playlist

Dinner Party Music

I love to entertain in the summertime. There’s just something so simple about hosting friends and family this time of year. Perhaps it’s the great mood everyone is in, or the laid-back vibe? I can’t put my finger on it exactly but I just find summer entertaining easy and enjoyable. Now that the nights are getting longer, I’m itching to kick off the backyard-entertaining season! We’ve been getting dirty in the garden and making sure our yard is inviting — I’d say a dinner party is soon in order.

Do you like to entertain during the summer? When thinking about hosting a gathering I like to pick a few points of inspiration to guide my party prep.  I am usually inspired by:

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Sip It :: Orange Grapefruit Mocktail

mocktail recipesAs the weather starts to warm up, you’ll want this refreshing drink in your arsenal. Made with real fruit juice, this beverage is healthy and delicious – a winner in my book! I recently served this recipe at a family dinner party and it was a hit with both the adults and children. Make one at a time, or in a pitcher for easy refills. You can also squeeze all the juice ahead of time which will make serving these a breeze.

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How to Host a Garden Party

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garden party ideas

 

Ahhh springtime. Spring is the perfect time to host a garden party (regardless of how many veggies or flowers you have planted in your garden). Use the warmer weather and colorful backdrop of the outdoors as an excuse to gather  friends, enjoy some good food and cool drinks. Here are a few tips to help make your outdoor party a success:

Invitations

These can be as simple or elegant as your style suits. Even a handwritten note with a dried pressed flower enclosed would be thoughtful. Regardless if you choose a formal, handwritten, or even online invitation − be sure to set the mood of your garden-themed event by including floral designs or flowers themselves.

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Serve it :: Crudite Platter

crudite platter

 

Entertaining guests? A crudite platter is always a great choice when preparing light appetizers, especially this time of year! Our own garden is beginning to really take off and one of our favorite things to do is serve up what we’ve grown. Until then, we enjoy heading to the local farmers’ market and picking up veggies. Select your favorite veggies and feel free to be creative! One idea is to make a serving bowl from an artichoke — it makes for great dip presentation.

crudite platter idea

 

To make you simply use a knife to cut the center out of the artichoke. Once you’ve removed most of the leaves, use a metal spoon to hallow out the center before filling with your favorite dip or hummus.

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