Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Halloween Past and Present

Look at Halloween pass and present.
This year I decided on a bringing the inside outside kinda look, so I started with fabric to create a curtain/drape look around the front door. I knew exactly what type of fabric and look I wanted and was SO excited when I walked into Hobby Lobby and there it was (I thought I heard voices, "it's a halloween miracle" I was so happy). Bonus, they had enough fabric, woo hoo!!!! For anyone interest the height for the opening was a tiny bit over eight foot so I went with 4 yards of fabric on each side, I know that may sound like a lot but I wanted it to drape when I pulled it back and puddle at the ground. The fabric was about $55 but I used my 40% off coupon (which I found out you can if they only make one cut) and it was less than $40 for all of it (under $20 per side).
The giant spiders I had and I'm not gonna lie, I nailed them to the door! My fig ivy may have gotten carried away and grew on the surrounding molding and sidelights of door so it's all getting repainted before Christmas, so why not nail in a few spiders. P.S. Do you see the spider on the roof?
Angled view...sooooooo different, right?
Night view
I need something in front of the door, I'm not loving the blah of it. Suggestions?
My children are not little and I didn't do skulls and skeletons till about two years ago when Little Einstein started asking for spooky halloween decorations. I comprised and did my version of spooky. This year I walked into Targets Halloween section (which it looked like a small battle had taken place) and there hanging all by herself was one lonely life size skeleton...I knew immediately she must come home with me...Mary Margaret was born! I got home grabbed all my Halloween ribbons and made her a huge skull bow, then ran to my jewelry closet and grabbed a couple of necklaces I wasn't wearing and two different spray paints and BAM Mary Margaret was Foofee'ed up. I would like to find her a ring and monogrammed handbag, just sayin.
This skeleton I already had and is about 3 feet tall, he  first started off on my front door (before I decided on the spiders) now sits next to Mary Margaret. Someone on instagram comment that my Halloween decorations were "Preppy Scary." I like that, plus you can't really go wrong with stripes, gingham and polka dots for any Holiday.

Another spot in the yard, heck why stop with Mary Margaret and the front door. 
Last year's door, this is a view from the inside looking out...I forgot to take pictures. A little tip, do not hang tissue paper pom poms and paper fans till right before your event if outside. It is extremely humid here and who knows when it may rain, but tissue and paper do not hold up in the humidity (or rain). I hung all these the Halloween morning. 

I believe this picture is two years ago when Little Einstein asked for spooky for the first time (plus you can see it was when my blog was Green Acres). He's still asking for the spider webs, but honestly that stuff is a huge pain in the hinny! 
This was last years mantle in our great room, pumpkins, skulls, silver trays, ribbons and greenery. I'm not in love with it but it worked last year.
This years mantle is posted on instagram, user name: Tikaac


 A Few Halloween Treats
I took these to my son's class after seeing them on Pinterest. It was almost a huge EPIC Pinterest fail! As you can see the vampire teeth I purchased do not exactly fit into the  center of the donut, I may have had to do a little smashing. I found the candy eyes at Hobby Lobby and stuck them on with icing. Overall they were a hit. Who doesn't love a hot fresh donut...even with vampire teeth.

Fall Bake sale treats I made and then fluffed up with cute boxes and bows, something anyone can do.

This picture is a collage from Halloween night last year. We get over three hundred little trick or treater knocking on our door every year and it takes a LOT of candy. When you get that many trick or treaters it also takes a small army of Mommies to get the job done. For the past 18 years (even before we had children) I have hosted Halloween at our house and invited over a FEW close friends and family. Traditionally the Dad's all take the children trick or treating (by that I mean they ride in a golf cart or two) and the Mom's all stay at our house and help pass out candy. I have food for everyone to eat as they wish and the whole evening is relaxed, fun and full of family and friends, not to mention tons of adorable costumes. For the record and to avoid hurt feelings, I tried once or twice hosting huge halloween trick or treating parties and invited lots and lots of people and it was EXHAUSTING! Trying to entertain all my guest and manage literally hundreds of trick or treaters was not much fun and I felt like all I did was run from the front door to the kitchen to the door, etc... For us, it works much better when we keep it to a small, small group. It makes it much easier to focus on the children, trick or treaters and also have a fun night ourselves. 

Every year I make caramel/chocolate covered apples(bottom left corner of pic), which had become a favorite. I love the results but dang unwrapping all those caramels is boringgggggggggggggggg.

Another favorite at our house is marshmallows with chocolate on top (and usually coated with sprinkles). Last year I tried a new spin and after making the chocolate topped marshmallows I made hole in the center of a cupcake wrapper then insert a lollipop (or cake-pop) stick through the cupcake wrapper hole and into the marshmallow. Marshmallow on a stick - Marshmallow-pop. These seriously take 10 minutes to make. Super duper easy peaszy.
Side note: I use the big Campfire marshmallows, they are about the size of three or four regular marshmallows and I can usually find them at Walmart.


This year we are planning something very exciting (we've never done before) for our trick or treaters (you'll have to follow me on instagram to find out what). The treat we have planned will not only be fun for them but will also benefit Juvenile Diabetes and Childhood Cancer. Hopefully it will be a huge hit and raise lots of money for both causes.

Hope everyone has a safe, fun and wonderful Halloween!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Nails - Press on/Glue On, Stickers or Polish

I'm not real sure when it happened but one day I went from never wearing nail polish to being completely in love with all the nail color, designs, art and all things nails. I would definitely say that I have alwaysssssssssssssssss been able to paint my nails...like a 4 year old, don't be jealous, it's gift I know! I not exactly sure if it's because I have no idea how to use my left hand to paint my right finger nails or if it's because I am completely impatient. It's more than likely a combo of the two. Irregardless 90 % of the time my fingers end up with more polish on them than my nails and 9 times out of ten I mess up two or more nails just waiting for them to dry ( that was a lot of bad math).

With all the amazing nail polishes out there and the super duper incredible nail designs I see all over instagram I was determined to learn how to be my own manicurist and was equally determined to develop some mad skills when it comes to nail polish (that last part is still a work in progress). To start off I decide to try out all the cute press on / glue on nails, it seemed logical, looked easy, it's fast, basically no dry time and they are available at the local drugstore, beauty stores, etc...plus they were not a long term commitment.


 Pookie and I found these at Claire's and I think they were buy one set get one set half off. Roughly nine dollars-ish for two packs. They came with glue and went on like magic. Unbelievably easy and to my shock they stayed on!  I blame this particular experience with the crazy that came after.


Since the glue on /  press on nails were a HIT, we (Pookie and I) advanced to the sticker decal thingys. This wasn't my first attempt at nail stickers but was my first time trying them out with a pattern. After the first two nails, I was moving along and had them all done in under ten minutes, not to mention I had no rips, bubbles or mishaps. They stayed on for a week easy with out any wear and tear and probably would have been find to wear a little longer but I was in the mood for sparkle and moved on to the next batch of nail goodies. 
Sidenote:  I will definitely look for more of these I believe they were from Walgreens and either Sally Hansen or Kiss brand ( I can't remember....I've inhaled to much polish remover fumes). I think they will would look fabulous with an all chocolate or creme monochromatic outfit this fall. 
Since these were a breeze to apply I have since ordered Jamberry nail stickers and will be trying those out very, very soon.


At this point I had tried glue on/press on nails in patterns, nail decals/stickers in animal print, naturally the next stop was GLITTER. These were from IMPRESS (available at Walgreens, Walmart, drugstores, approx $7) and the color was vibrant with lots of sparkle and easy to apply. I didn't obviously do a fabulous job on my birdie finger (it looks a little wonky in the photo). I tried these two ways - they come with little glue tabs already attached and you peel and press immediately on to your nail. Easy enough, but that kind of scared me...the staying power didn't fill me with confidence that I wasn't going to look down and be missing half my
 nails. To experiment I applied half the nails with the glue tabs only and the other half I pulled the glue tabs off and added my own liquid nail glue. The ones with the additional liquid nail glue lasted longer. My suggestion is add the additional liquid nail glue ( you will need to purchase separately).


These were either IMPRESS or KISS brand ( I can't remember) and I was not a fan. The only reason I wouldn't buy these again was that they were a medium length, I missed that in bold letters on the box when I was purchasing them so I thought I'd try them anyway. They held up fine, I strictly prefer a short length and that's the only reason I would not purchase these again. They were a little busy...how can I even type that after blue glitter nails, leopard print and pink, black and white stripes, polka dots and bows.

A look at the packaging. The brand IMPRESS comes in a box, but once opened it looks like they are inside a nail polish bottle...the packaging alone sang to me - SOOOOOOOOOOOOO CuTe!


I mastered the glue on/press on nails and nail stickers, because it's so hard...NOT! Next up, real big girl nail polish! Nail polish SCARES me, I had a very bad experience with nail polish once and since it kind of left a very bad impact (or my mom would say I learned a vaulable lesson). 

What happened you might be wondering - short story: In high school parents were out of town and I was home and decided to paint my nails. Before leaving my mom told me not to paint my nails in the family room. I decide to paint my nails and that I wanted to watch a movie while applying the polish and waiting for it to dry so I'll paint them in the family room (who's gonna know). Three or four finger nails into  painting my nails, the RED nail polish I was using slipped out of my hands and went ALL over my Mom's new WHITE carpet!
 At that point I may have blacked out, after my life flashed before my eyes.
  In a panic I grabbed the nail polish remover ( that was next to me) and poured it all over the carpet and begin to scrub....OH DEAR LORD never, never, never do that! It looked like someone had been murdered on our family room floor.
 Let's recap, I was told not to polish my nails in family room (check), Red polish spills everywhere (check), nail polish remover makes the whole situation ten times worse (check, check)...and my parents are due home in a few hours! 
Panic can not begin to explain my level of FREAK OUT at that point.
I forgot to mention, it's a SUNDAY. I started calling carpet cleaning companies looking for a possible solution and after about ten, YES I found one and for several hundred dollars he will come out and try to see what he could do (remember my parents are only hours away). 
I'm in high school I did not have several hundred dollars. Enter - more super duper freaking out!
I called one of my Aunts and first asked her to promise not to ever repeat what I was about to ask her even if the answer was no. She agreed, I explained, and she came over brought me the money and never told my parents. I swear for months I couldn't walk in that room.  I will never forget how super cool my Aunt was about the whole thing and how she kept her promise, my parents found out when I was in college and we all laughed about it. 
Since then I rarely bought nail polish, I'd use something at the nail salon or went with clear. When I did paint my nails again there were tarps involved and the result has always been the same - not great!  So after the glue on/press on and nail stickers I natural thought I need to get a handle on real nail polish and try again. As you can see in the picture I'm not going to be a professional manicurist anytime soon but progress has been made. I'm not wild about the overall black sparkle color I tried but I'm not stressing because 98% of the polish is actually on my nails and not my skin. In the picture they look thick and lumpy but in person I promise they are not. I did use an E.L.F. tiny crease brush dipped in nail polish remover to try and clean up the edges.
The picture above shows the products I use to paint my nails and listed in order of use.
1. Basecoat, apply one coat - Orly Bonder Rubberized Basecoat (available at Ulta).
2. Apply two coats of nail color -  the black sparkle in the photo is L'Oreal #139 Rough Around The Edges (purchased at Walgreens) and the gold glitter polish ( that I LOVE) is by ORLY and the color is Halo (purchased mine at Ulta).
3. Seche Vita Dry Fast Top Coat, apply one coat - it is fast drying I purchased mine at Ulta but have seen it as Sally's Beauty.
4. Once that has all dried I apply two coats of American Classics GELOUS to give the finished results a gel look and shine.
5. I do like to add a cuticle oil to my cuticles at night before bed or on long rides to horse shows and I have to say I have not found a cuticle oil that is amazeballs.  So far all my experiences with cuticle oil have been great but I haven't tried anything yet that has moved me to buy a second bottle. The one pictured is from Sally's Beauty Supply is smells nice, feels good and works, its by California Mango and is called Mango Magic Cuticle Oil.
6. Not pictured ( I forgot) is my Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover, I use the cuticle remover before I ever get started with my nails, even before press on/ glue on nails or nail stickers. It takes a minute and I think it helps.
7. Nail polish remover I use to remove basic nail colors (without sparkle or glitter) is by Zoya, the 3-in-1 formula (polish remover, nail cleaner and nail prep, available at Ulta). Nail Polish I use to remove sparkle or glitter is from CVS or Walgreens either stores genetic brand 100% acetone nail polish remover. Its harsh, but lets be real, to get glitter nail polish off it has to be. A little tip to remove glitter polish - apply acetone to a cotton ball, apply to nail, put a band-aid on top and stick to finger, wait, and wait, and wait...remove band-aid and cotton ball and the polish should come off much easier.

Hope that helps you out. If you have any nail products you'd like to share with me or helpful nail tips please leave a comment.  
Have a great weekend.
* Lesson learned - never polish your nails in the family room if you don't have several hundred dollars handy.



Friday, May 16, 2014

Addiction

Trying to post from my phone. This is trail and since I can only wish I was I computer nerd we will see how it goes. 
The picture (forgive me it's a screen shot) is of a tote I am white knuckling right now. I admit I need a serious twelve step program when it comes to handbags, totes, bags, maybe all accessories.  Since I was a little girl I've been a bag lady. Heck even my barbie's had a million accessories. 
The picture is of a Cinco Powell tote and I am trying to deny myself but I have already sorted out the details in my head. Cream bag with kelly green embroidered monogram (tCl) with a kelly green tassel.  As soon as it arrives I would quickly scotch guard it and immediately throw my wallet, epi pen, gloss, sunnies and phone in.
Roll your eyes, I do at myself almost daily. Handbags have always symbolized a lady like quality to me. A dear sweet friend of my mother's (who I adored) always had beautiful bags that always seem to make her outfit completely polished and perfect (at least in my mind).
I know it's silly, but in some weird way I can match an event with a handbag- 13th birthday, surprise party and I clearly can remember the handbag I wanted that year (from Express). Christmas of my junior year in high school asking for my first Louis Vuitton.  First boyfriend in high school buying me a gorgeous bag (that I still have), college boyfriend and dooney & Burke (it was the early, early 90's). College graduation and my bff surprising me with a Coach briefcase. Not that it tags a special event for my obsession to whirl out of control. I can't explain it, the smell of leather, the feel of a Louis Vuitton, the adorable colors and whimsy of Kate Spade, the sophistication of goyard, timeless quality of gucci, and on and on.
Yes it's a material thing that gives me a unnatural sense of calmness. It's ok to judge me, I do it to myself all the time.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

What to Pack???



My camera is ready, well not exactly...by ready I mean I plan on packing it and buying several new SD cards, but you get the idea. I am generally pretty good at taking pictures while on vacation, and I am not claiming to be a professional. Overall I tend to take a ton of photos, I'm not great at it but I capture the memory or image I was hoping for and that's the important part. This trip has been in the works since January and I have been mentally preparing for it for at least three months. Only one problem, mental preparation is not the same as actual preparation. Fun facts about me: I work best under pressure (by work I mean pack), and I always make a million list before a trip and can not find a one when the packing actually starts. So overall I am uber awesome at traveling. NOT! I always over pack, and usually forget stuff and can not ever seem to manage my own luggage on my own. EEEKKKK I have a lot to work out before Sunday. Not to mention I haven't called the credit card company to say "oh hey I'll be in like 8 different places that are not in Texas for the next sixteen days." Probably need to add that to the list, that I will lose as well as adding an international plan to my cell phone.Oh...and find my passport.
Now to a few fun deets about the trip, I'm traveling with a friend who WON this trip because she is rocking awesome at her job. I might be a little jealous, lets me be honest..the only trips I've won because of my job are...NONE.  So my friend can apparently rock your friends socks off when it comes to insurance and being amazeballs at it. We will be in so many places I literally have to check the email (some are: Venice, Rome, Capri, Piza, Florence,and I am forgetting some), the other day I realized we were also going to Monte Carlo! 
Back to my list and managing the luggage, WHAT DO I PACK??? Sure the I get the basics: phone charger, passport, money, camera, special pill for the plane ride. YES, I am a nervous flier, I didn't say scared to fly because I get nervous all confined to one space for nine plus hours and I'm super chatty. I know that no one wants super chatty next to them on a nine plus hour flight...I don't! Right now I need to say, sorry to the person next me to for chatting you up till my special pill kicked in and knocking me out. My big plan is to make my pod into a bed, get into my sleep sack, put on eye mask and wake up with really bad hair and puff eyes in London.
Lets talk clothes, and sixteen ish days of them. I'm generally a big fan of dresses and will be packing a few new ones ( a Lilly Pulitzer maxi, EM dress and several sail to sable dresses) and several other basic dresses and separates. Jack Rogers and Tory Burch Reva's are the shoes of choice at the moment but I may need to pack something more practical. What kind of shoe is considered practical and perfect for travel that doesn't look like I work in a cafeteria?? Sperry's are not always blister friendly for me, and wedges are definitely not practical but are adorable. Eeek, I see problems with foot wear malfunctions.  Lets not forget jewelry, what's okay to take and not to take. I probably wear enough jewelry everyday to open a small pop up shop.  I don't know, I just want to pack and be prepared and have an incredible trip full of fun and great memories. The rest is gravy, right???  

Have any great tips on packing? please share.