a simple outing

we had a quick, casual outing on a beautiful sunny day that turned out to be freezing cold and soooo windy in the early afternoon and then a warm day late afternoon! my, what a difference a few hours can make!

i met my dad and sister, thuy, for lunch out at the mall. we ate at a yummy restaurant and then decided to get donuts and coffee after our main meal. my dad could live off of doughnuts and coffee. ha! we were in a new part of the mall that is now a bunch of restaurants and it was pretty quiet and serene. we did a mini photo shoot with olive {natch}, ate doughnuts, sipped coffee, and enjoyed our peaceful moments together.

since my dad’s leg{s} have been bothering him, we decided to not venture out too far. thuy and i wanted to hit up anthropologie but it was too far for my dad to walk so we decided to call it quits. besides, they had more errands to run and i didn’t mind heading home with the kiddos. it was nice just to get out for a bit but honestly, with two kiddos and one being so young, you’re bound to time frames! well, i choose to be committed because i prefer for my kids to have a routine.

i love that ellie can nap at 10am and 2-3pm and olive will occassionly nap in the afternoon {depending on her wake up time & morning activities}. it limits our outings at times but hey…they are only this little for so long!

anyhoo, it was a great blip in our day. we loved seeing my dad and my sister for a bit and enjoyed the sunshine and fresh air!

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[my sweet  babe]

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[ellie enjoying being flipped around by auntie thuy]

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[thuy thought it was a good idea for ellie to try her glasses, ellie – not so much. hahaha!]

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[she loved her glasses so much!]

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[stan’s donuts]

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xoxo

makey valentine’s day cards

yayyyyyyy! it was our yearly ~ let’s makey valentine’s day cards for everyone!

i love doing this every year with olive and love that she has fun decorating all the cards. i can’t wait until ellie is old enough to do this with olive, it’ll be cuteness overload when that happens!

i rummaged out all the fun decor i had stored away and created a fun little space of heart explosions, lots of red, and crafty stuff galore. olive was so excited to dig into all the valentine’s day goodness. she started out with painting the heart cards but became restless and went crazy with the stickers. she totally loved putting all the festive stickers all over the cards and loved the little, what she called alien, poms! those were her most favorite items, although they were just for fun and wouldn’t mail very well in a flat envelope! ha!

ellie joined in on the fun for a bit but soon olive finished up all her valentine’s day cards in style. this mama then addressed and mailed them out to all her sweet little friends! we hope all her buddies enjoyed their sweet little surprise in the mail! olive wants to know if you will be her valentine?! muwah!

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[long story: i bought one heart envelope on sale {super cheap, yearssss ago} and ordered it to get embroidered with olive’s name. it arrived not embroidered! i was super upset but apparently i must have ‘deleted’ the personalization part of my order and that was why it arrived blank. i called the company and figured out what had happened and i wanted to order another one because i wanted olive’s name on it! the customer service person was soooooo nice and helpful and told me to not bother to send the other envelope back because it was so inexpensive and it wouldn’t be cost efficient to send it back. well, thought, what will i do with an extra envelope? i almost gave it away but ended up keeping and found it in my valentine’s day box of decor this year! how perfect?! i then got the second envelope personalized with ellie’s name! it was meant to be!]

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[copious options]

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[she loved her ‘aliens’]

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[painting away]

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[she did such a great job!]

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[i love her]

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[she’s so fun]

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[gahhhhhhh, i love these girls!]

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[i couldn’t help but post every pic of her making the cards…she was so into it!]

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[her favorite items from the day!!]

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xoxo

watercolor valentine’s day cards

last year, miss olive helped mama make some valentine’s day cards to send out. this year, olive did it all on her own! i was so proud and excited!

i was out shopping with my sisters one night and we stopped by a paper store to peruse around. it was perfect because it was on my list to grab some extra supplies for olive’s valentine’s day cards. i had a lot of ‘stuff’ at home so i didn’t need much because i am a craft hoarder. haha!

one morning, i set up her table and asked her if she wanted to draw {duh, i obvs knew what her answer was going to be!}, she was so excited to ‘draw’. who knew this kid would be so entertained and paint for hours?! she was loving it. she painted heart after heart after heart. i didn’t think she would plow through so many cards! i had purchased a set of 20 and had a leftover pack at home, not thinking she would paint every single one of the paper hearts! she was having a blast.

i taught her how to wash off her paintbrush after each color and all of a sudden she became a pro! i didn’t have a paint smock for her but she is such a neat little girl, she didn’t get a drop of paint on her cute little outfit nor did she paint outside the heart’s lines!

after painting all her cards, i then helped her place her stickers on each one. i pulled off the sticker and she happily stuck it on each heart. it was too cute…she would place each sticker on there so wonky! crooked, sideways, or upside down if i didn’t help navigate her a bit!

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[the preparation]

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[a favorite valentine’s day decor…i actually bought this a few months after olive was born and didn’t have a place or a real purpose for it until this year!]

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[she is usually so careful but i realized i need a smock for her! although she did not get one drop of paint on herself at all]

via tandeminlove.com[we pulled out our valentine’s day books…our favorite, olive my love]

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[my baby doll]

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[she’s too cute…cleaning off her brush to pick a new color to paint with]

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[her final touch: placing stickers on her valentine’s day cards]

after we finished all the cards, i assembled them all inside red envelopes, sprinkled some with confetti, and addressed them with a silver sharpie pen. in hindsight, i would have totally bought a finer point sharpie pen because the thicker marker took up way too much space on such a little envelope! eep! i sealed each one with decorative, festive print washi tape and a pretty little spring time flower postage stamp.

hc dropped the cards off in the mail and we were excited at the prospect of everyone smiling when they opened up their little valentine’s day card from baby olive.

xoxo

makey valentines

we loooooove making cards…especially valentine’s day cards! it’s always a fun project & i love racking my brain for creative ideas. i didn’t get as detailed with this diy as i typically can get. i was a bit rushed, but nevertheless…we got ’em done and they turned out cute.

we set up the workstation and we were ready to go! olive was excited to finger print her cards {but then her controlling mama got her in a tizzy near the end}. she was a good girl, she finger printed all her cards and was a happy camper to be sticking her finger{s} all over that ink pad.

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[i love the valentine’s day mailer envelope!]

i love, love this table and chair set from auntie kim, terry, and the boys. it’s so purrfect. i have future plans to jazz it up a bit. i definitely want to add a little pizzaz to the set but i haven’t had the time as of late. so i am hoping to be able to accent it soon…just a little color and design to the stems and attach a paper roll for fun, drawing, coloring activities! soon. soon.

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i put out a bunch of fun valentine’s day trinkets to entertain miss olive. she loved the little pom pom creatures. she did such a good job {with the help of momma} stamping all the cards with her ittty bitty finger!

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[my sweet babes…always so serious]

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[ready to makey some cards!]

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[finger printing!]

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[i love this face & those cheeks]

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[swak!]

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once all the cards were finger printed by olive, me, and hc, i went to work on detailing them. normally, i would add more depth, layers, pizzaz, glitter, and details but i was stressed for time. oh, it’s so me…i always take on toooooo much! so, a few paper cutouts, stamping, stickers, and drawing was all i could do. ūüôā

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[aaaanndd they are ready to be sent!]

well, there they are! our diy valentine’s day cards by us! signed, sealed, and ready to be delivered!

xoxo

snow globes

a few years ago, i created these little snow globes for our place and as gifts. i just love them! they are so easy to make and so cute to have around during the holidays. this year, from our move {chicago to the burbs}, a few of my snow globes were jarred from the bumpy move and needed some tlc. so i decided, why not share on how they are made? it’s so simple and fun!

what you will need:

ball jars {wide mouth or regular…whatever preference or size and height} i like a bit of a variety in sizes.

snow. you can buy it at any craft store. i bought frosty snow and iridescent snow to give it some bling.

i added in confetti gold stars to add some shine.

little pine trees. a package at the craft store comes in a variety of sizes.

a glue gun.

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[i also used iridescent snow…it was camera shy]

first, undo the ball jar so you have the round, flat lid bottom side up. i put a generous amount of glue onto the bottom of the tree and firmly place it onto the lid. hold onto it for a few seconds to let it set.

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i then take the snow {both types} and confetti, and mix it into the ball jar. you only need a little bit. maybe a inch or half an inch {depending on the size of your tree}. a little goes a long way.

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some people add water to the jar, but i prefer not too. i then place the lid {with the tree} back onto the cap and screw it back onto the ball jar. flip it over and ta da! you have yourself a snow globe! easy peasy!

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i love making these. i hope you have some fun making them too! like i said, they make great gifts or add just the right amount of festive, holiday decor fun to your house.

xoxo

first birthday candle

i searched and searched for glitter ‘1’ birthday candles. no one sells them in a retail store {at least i couldn’t find one!} and i found a few on etsy but i was not going to pay $10 for a glitter candle!! yes, i will pay for handmade things but it has to be comparable to time + price to push me to buy it.¬†making one costs less than 1/5 of what they were charging for it {including shipping}. so, i decide to makey a candle myself! it’s so easy peasy, that is why i couldn’t bring myself to buy one at that price!

everyone wants to have a little sparkle on their birthday, non? well, olive definitely does. much to hc’s dismay {he hates glitter}. so glitter, sparkle, shine i did.

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1. just buy a one candle at the local party store or whatever number you wish to glitter.

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2. take the rubber cement wand {tap off the excess glue} and brush it along the outline of the candle. just enough to the edge so the colored outline will be covered. if you want, you can also use a different, smaller brush to help control the glue and be more precise.

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3. take gold glitter {or the glitter color of your choice!} and sprinkle it all on top of the candle. be generous! cover the entire top and let it sit for just a bit before you tap off the excess. you want to make sure it has a thick, even coat of glitter.

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4. ta da! you have yourself a nifty, cool, homemade glitter candle! let it sit for at least another thirty minutes before you can tap off any excess glitter {again}.

so, there you have it! a lovely, gold glitter candle for olive’s first birthday cake! i’m super excited and can’t wait to see it on her sweet little smash cake.

xoxo

paper rosettes

so, olive’s first birthday is coming up…and i have been a mad women preparing for it {brainstorming months in advance}. it’s oooohhhhh so much going on, with her birthday party planning and prepping, thanksgiving coming up, we need to decorate for christmas, and get some holiday shopping done! i must admit…it’s been a bit overwhelming.

to top it all off, we are hosting the party at our house and we needed to get soooo much stuff done internally. hc was in the middle of remodeling our bathroom, we needed to buy a bunch of supplies for the party, we had to organize the basement {of course, it’s on our list to remodel…well, basically the entire house}, and execute a lot of cleaning!

the basement was our biggest task! when we moved in, we knew that we would eventually remodel the space, so we threw a whole bunch of stuff down there and promised ourselves that we would ultimately get it organized. well, that time was now. ugh. it wasn’t hard but time consuming!! we are super happy with how it cleaned up…it usable, but we can’t wait until we really can make it an awesome playroom down there! so, as of right now, it will do. it’s all cleaned up and now the kids have a play area!

anyhoozle, what a tangent i was on {it was a much needed rant!}! so, for olive’s party, i mostly bought the decorations…although it kills me to do so. ya know i love crafting and making everything myself but with soooo much going on, time is money and i had no time, so i spent the money ūüėČ everything i purchased, i can make but since i was stressed for time {so click, click, click and buy i did}, i saved it by just purchasing what my creative mind wanted to do. besides, if i do have any free time, i love spending it with my olive…just chillin’, getting hugs and kisses, and giggles is priceless!

so, some of the decor…i ended up making myself because 1. either i couldn’t find what i needed/wanted 2. it was too late to order anything to get it on time! i needed paper rosettes to decorate certain areas for olive’s party and i couldn’t find them so easily…isn’t that cray?! online, yes, but in store…no. it was hard to find them. i thought i was in the twilight zone! c’mon…paper rosettes should be an easy find and buy!

alas, that wasn’t the case so i ended up making them on my own. besides, i was then able to get the colors i wanted and the quantity i needed!via tandeminlove.com

1. i chose a packet of paper card stock in five shades of pink. card stock is a bit difficult to work with, i would use a lighter weight paper but i couldn’t find the size or color i needed in a thinner paper. it just makes it a bit more tough to fold.

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2. fold the paper {long length} in half inch folds, back and forth, to form an accordion style.

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3. fold the entire piece of paper until it’s all an accordion fold, don’t worry if it’s not perfect…any flaws will be hidden or not noticeable.

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4. fold the paper in half.

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5. tape the inside fold sides together.

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6. your paper, once taped, will look like a fan.

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7. repeat with another piece of paper and attach your fans together to form your paper rosette. you can do four fans and make a more dense rosette, but i chose to only fold two sheets of paper to from mine!

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ta da! you have your pretty paper rosettes! so easy peasy, non?! you can also fold the paper long ways to make different sized rosettes; and depending on your party, theme, color scheme, you can make your rosettes in solids or patterns…no matter what, they will always look fabulous and add total pizazz to any party decor and ambiance!

xoxo

animal bebe shower idea

continuing on with the bebe shower ideas!

the next one on my mind is an animal themed baby shower. you can go so many ways with this one! my girlfriend, jodi, had an animal themed shower the prior year. it was so cute, the favors were beautifully packaged animal crackers and fun little animal sign holders. the invites, the table signs, and the games were all cutely tied together.

the shower below inspired me with my gender reveal party from this past summer! the colors scheme and the little animal topped jars started my imagination and ended up with this final result here! it was a great party…look how a colorful baby shower inspiration led into a marvelous gender reveal fête!

here are some fabulous ideas for an animal themed bebe shower:

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i am a big fan of backdrops, any type of fun decor you want to whip up will always be a do! i love the streamer style background for this dessert table. the strung wooden animals add a perfect fun element to the decor. you can find some similar one here.

for the desserts, you can’t go wrong with cupcakes! this shower has fruit tartlets, vanilla cupcakes, and strawberry shortcakes on a stick. yum!

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[beautiful floral arrangements…i love roses, especially garden roses!]

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i like the wooden drink stirrers, a very festive touch. how fun! depending on the season, pink lemonade is a perfect, fresh drink for a baby shower. otherwise, choosing a seasonal drink is easy…there are so many fun recipes out there. like for an autumn shower, an apple cider, cranberry, and ginger punch would be delicious!

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i love how romantic the ribbon streamers look, a pretty walkway entrance for your guests. if the party is outside, you can use a tree limb to complete the look or over a doorway, if indoors.

of course, flowers always complete a party. i love soft, warm colors. my favorite flowers? garden roses, ranunculus, peonies, and anemones!

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put together some delicious finger foods & apps for your guests, like heirloom tomato tarts and kale chicken salad.

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of course, everyone loves bread & dips! easy, quick bites for your guests. naan is a yummy choice and one of my favorites!

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how fun is this tea bar?! so adorable and a great favor gift for your guests to take home!

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[wiley valentine paper products // photos by andrea patricia]

i love the little animal wooden cutout straws. so easy to do! you can find similar straws here.

i love the soft, pretty pastel colors of this party and how whimsical and romantic the decor is! such great ideas to use at the next baby shower you throw or any fete to be had!

xoxo

children’s book bebe shower idea

i love throwing parties and i love hosting people {we need more space!}. ¬†it’s so fun for me!

i’m always thinking of creative ideas for future f√™tes. ya never know when you will need to whip up some fun decor!

what has got me thinking of baby showers lately, is the fact that i will be attending several showers in the next few months {whoa}! i’m so excited for my friends, who are having babies, and i love going to a good party!

here are some of my favorite themed showers i have seen of late. watch out! some great inspirations headed your way {aaaaannd, it’s not just for baby showers, these ideas are great for any party!}‚Ķit will fill your head with awesome creative ideas!

a children’s book shower:

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[source: katrina louise photography]

book themed baby shower

i absolutely love the onesie clothes string! what a colorful, fun idea. a very creative touch. you can buy inexpensive onesie and have each guest personalize it by decorating each one making it unique and a perfect gift for the mom to be!

the table spread is just darling with the colored glass {i love colored glass…hobnail, milk glass, green, pink…}, you can visit vintage shops, ebay, or etsy to collect fun glassware. or to add to the eclectic look, have your friends, who are helping out with the shower, bring their own collections!

how cool is the book garland?! it’s made out of old children’s books. ¬†just cut up the pages and cover each ‘mini’ book with colored construction paper and hang it up with clothes string/twine/fishing wire and clothes pins. pepper in little paper poms and voila! a themed decor to elevate the ambiance.

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what a yummy table spread! since most showers are mainly during lunch time, make it light bites. whether you are a cook or you will get it catered, make sure you have something sweet and savory. i love a hearty salad, a meat dish, a fresh side of pasta, and some good ‘ol carbs to top it off! depending on where you place the food table, you can easily create an inexpensive backdrop to the table. rummage through your stash and find color coordinating streamers or purchase some at a dollar store, to create a whimsical background. of course, flowers always, always add a perfect finishing touch to any table spread!

get creative with favors by sticking close to the theme of the party or representing the mom to be by giving away something that is so ‘her’! i love these onesie sugar cookies as favors, perfectly tied into the baby shower decor.

the lower right hand corner photo is the invite to the party. how lucky was this lady to have a friend hand draw the invites {like myself, who had a dear friend, darling olivia, create our wedding invites‚Ķyou can see it here}. if you do have an artistic friend to recreate classic children’s book characters or just print them out, it will make for a unique invitation. bind the pictures accordion style {washi tape would be a perfect accent} with the right wording and font, you will have such a cute invite everyone will rave about [and something special the mom to be can save}!

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[beautiful!]

what a wonderful party, non? i have a few more favorites i will sporadically share soon!

xoxo

valentine’s day treats

finally, i made valentine’s day treats for my darling nephews!

first, i made s’more packages for them. i created labels on craft paper that said, ‘everyday i love you s’more’. i had purchased hershey’s bars, peeps pink marshmallows hearts, and organic graham crackers for the fun contents inside.

i filled each bag with lip and heart sprinkles {fun element}, placed the ingredients inside, and sealed the bags with the labels. i then placed felt hearts on each label as final touches to the festive packages! ¬†ta-da‚Ķvalentine’s day s’more treats. a yummy, festive, edible gift anyone would love!

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[lovely tasty ingredients]

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[voila! final product ♥]

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[awww, everyday i love you s’more too!]

next treat? a box full of goodies! i purchased these precious boxes from the dollar section at target {love that area!}, found a few fun toys to fill the present up with, and stuffed the bottom of the box with soft pink tissue paper to add to the festive packaging. i love all the bright colors and fun patterns.

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i filled the colored patterned glassine bags full of conversation hearts and wrapped each bag with twine to seal it shut. each box contained a fuzzy pom alien, a squeeze toy, tattoos {they are nutty about tattoos!}, silly putty, candies {nut free, of course}, and their bag of s’mores!

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[aerial view!]

i had so much fun making these little gifts for the boys. it’s always a joy for me to have time to create and get crafty!

i’ll add a few more surprise trinkets and voila! valentine’s day gifts for r + b! yay!

i hope you are scheming up some great ideas for valentine’s day. i have a dozen more creative things i want to do! there’s never enough time in the day or week! whether it’s a yummy dinner recipe, a crafty gift, or a sweet treat surprise! happy day to creativity!

xoxo