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  • Taylor Swift TTPD Inspired Gift Guide

    It's The Tortured Poet's Department release week and we're anxiously awaiting Taylor's newest album over here. We've curated this TTPD-inspired gift guide for the Swifites in your life! From typewriters and books to poetry-inspired gifts that your inner tortured poet will enjoy. TTPD Inspired Gift Guide Vintage Style Typewriter - Let's bring back typed, purposeful, letters. This vintage typewriter would make a great gift and I honestly love the mint green color but they have it in other colors as well. Edgar Allen Poet Magnetic Poetry Kit - This is so playful and fun! Feather Quill and Ink Set - I'm getting this to write all my birthday/holiday cards with from now on. Custom Library Stamp Embosser - This is stunning! I want a custom one for my home library. TTPD Sweatshirt - Stay cozy while you rep your TTPD sweatshirt Emily Dickinson Poetry Book - This is a beautiful book of poems by Emily. Candlestick Holders - These "mismatched" candlestick holders make a stunning centerpiece. Journal - for pouring out your heart and soul The Lines Puzzle - Just like the one Taylor displayed at the Spotify library installation. Ceramic Face Flower Vase - It just feels like TTPD Poet Sign- Show everyone a poet lives here with this cute sign. Typewriter Vase - This would make a cute piece on a bookshelf or side table TTPD shirt - We love the style of this tee, black and white feels fitting Writing Dice - These dice are great for writer's block or a fun writing exercise to get the creative juices flowing. Peace Hand - Taylor signified "two" a few times, throwing up this hand symbol at the Grammy's when she announced her new album. This would look cute on a bookshelf or to hold rings and jewlery. Typewriter Prop - The prop is the exact one that Taylor uses to promote her new lyrics Fountain Pen - Write with "pitch black ink" with this fountain pen.

  • Easter Basket Ideas for Tweens and Teens

    If you are the mom of a tween or teen, you know that the older they get the harder they are to shop for. Their interests get a little more specific and they have their own opinions. You have to be a little more deliberate with your gifts, and that's fine. Easter baskets are still something that I love to do for my tween (is 10 a tween, it still feels like a kid) and teen. Easter basket fillers for tweens and teens can still be fun and creative and aimed toward their likes and current trends. Our Easter Basket Filler guide for tweens and teens has some fun ideas that won't break the bank. I usually do two or three fun things, maybe a book, and of course candy! Dragon Eggs - These are fun fidget toys. The dragon egg shape is perfect for Easter. Gloss nail strips - These nail strips are cute and don't require an LED light. Story Cubes - These fun cubes are great for mixing and matching and creating fun stories together. Waterproof speaker - If your teen likes to jam out during long showers then a waterproof speaker will elevate their shower jam session! Tamagotchi - Bring back this retro trendy game with the classic Tamagotchi! As a millennial mom, this one brings back memories and is for sure going in our baskets this year! Jellybeans candy - A go-to Easter candy for sure! Cute packaging too! Origami kit - traditional Japanese patterns and over 300 papers to create with. Hydrating face mist - For the skin care goddess these hydrating facial mists come in pretty colors and smell so good! Bunny slippers - These bunny slippers are so cozy and cute! Crochet kit - This bunny kit from Woobles is great for beginners who want to get into crochet. Pocket-Sized Game Controller - This mini controller works with Android, switch and Raspberry Pi! Zip string - this rope launcher fidget toy was featured on Shark Tank! Butterfly claw clips - These cute clips are very on-trend! Food Squishmallows - They may be teens and you think stuffed animals are a thing of the past but Squishmallows have a GRIP on all the tweens/teens I know! They are obsessed with these food-themed ones - takeout noodles, ice cream sandwich, avocado, or grilled cheese! Peel-off lip stain - if your tween or teen is on social media they've probably seen these peel-off lip stains are trending. They look super fun to do. Flying orb ball - This ball is fun to fly around the house or backyard! Birth Flower Layered Necklace - Layered necklaces are so pretty and these birth flower one feels personalized and looks very pretty for tweens and teens. StikBot Stopmotion Animation Kit - This starter kit has 8 posable sticky bots and a tripod to allow you to create fun stop-motion videos!

  • Veggie Chicken Parmesan Zoodles

    To kick off March, I wanted to share some "Meatless March" meal ideas. These are great for meatless Mondays or any night you may want some meat-free dishes. This veggie chicken parmesan zoodles meal is the kind of meal that you can make as much or as little as you want. Making dinner for one or the whole family, this meal comes together in about the amount of time it takes to cook the chicken patties. This is a lightened-up version that is meat-free. Veggie Chicken Parmesan Zoodles Ingredients: Veggie Chicken Patties (I used Morning Star) Zucchini noodles Spaghetti noodles olive oil marinara sauce shredded mozzarella seasonings - salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning Cook your spaghetti noodles as instructed on the packaging. I cook about half of what I would normally make per person. Cook your veggie chicken patties as instructed on packing. You can either purchase your zucchini noodles from the store premade, or make your own from a zucchini and a spiralizer - I've done both ways. Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan and saute your zucchini noodles until softened. Season as desired. Add in your spaghetti noodles to incorporate the zucchini and pasta together. In a small to medium saucepan heat your marinara sauce over medium heat until heated through. Plate your zucchini and noodles. Top with a scoop of marinara and a sprinkle of mozzarella. Cut your cooked vegetable chicken patty into strips and place on top of your sauce and mozzarella to melt your cheese. Serve and enjoy!

  • 10 Valentine's Day Cocktails

    Valentine's Day is always a fun night to experiment with new and exciting cocktails. When my husband and I were younger we always went out to a fancy dinner to celebrate Valentine's Day. Now, we avoid the crowds and make a "dinner date at home". While sometimes it is a romantic night in, usually we include the kids and do heart-shaped pizza, chocolate fondue, and cocktails for the adults. Valentine's Day is a day for love and why can't it be a family holiday!? Because we're always wanting to try new things in the kitchen, we decided to round up 10 Valentine's Day Cocktails we think sound good that you might like too! 10 Valentine's Day Cocktails These 10 cocktails are great for Valentine's Day and beyond! We included some that are popular classics that we don't always make and unique ones that sound yummy to try! Love Potion Cocktail - This bright red cocktail is flirty and romantic. It has cranberry vodka as its base and a piece of dry ice makes it look like it's smoking! Pomegranate Gin Fizz - This gin-based drink is a lovely egg white cocktail. I love the soft pink color and the fizzy component. Espresso Martini - Coffee cocktails have been a hit everywhere lately. This cocktail will help get the night started off with a pep in your step! Lavender Haze - This unique drink was inspired by the lovely Lavender Haze song from Taylor Swift. Get lost in your own lavender haze while sipping on this cocktail! Rose Champagne Cocktail - Roses and champagne are staples for Valentine's Day. Bring them together in this fun cocktail! Chocolate Strawberry Martini - This vodka-based drink has chocolate dripping down the sides. If I saw someone drinking this in a restaurant I would immediately want it. It looks like dessert in a glass! Spicy Paloma Cocktail - Add some spice to your night and you're cocktail with this hot honey and citrus drink! I already feel like I will want seconds of this drink! Old Fashioned - Keep it classic with this old-fashioned. It only takes 4 ingredients and it's a winner every time. This is a great one for warming up on a cold night. Raspberry Sorbet Bellini - This cocktail is simple but pretty to sip on! I love that instead of ice you're using sorbet to keep your drink cool and add flavor at the same time. Bloody Valentine - Blood oranges are in season right now and can be found in your local grocery stores. The blood orange juice in this cocktail perfectly balances with the elderflower liqueur.

  • Crockpot Chicken Chili

    This is one of my quick and easy, dump-and-go crockpot meals that I make in the fall and winter. It's a hearty chili with chicken and beans as your protein and fiber. This Crockpot Chicken Chili is great for football, especially the Superbowl when nobody wants to cook, firepits, and nights when everyone is busy! For this recipe, you're going to freeze your chicken ahead of time. I try to remember to move my chicken to my refrigerator the night before I'm going to cook this chili, but I've also pulled it directly out of the freezer and put it right in the crockpot. Crockpot Chicken Chili 2 frozen chicken breasts 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained 1 can Rotel 1 can Mexican corn or corn with peppers 1 Tbsp cumin 1 tsp chili powder 1 tsp onion powder 1 package of ranch dressing mix 1 - 8oz package of cream cheese Place your frozen chicken into the crockpot. Rinse and drain your beans and add them to the crockpot. Add your cans of Rotel and corn, without draining them. Add in seasonings and mix them around, covering the chicken with some of the bean mixture. Top the mixture with your block of cream cheese. Cook on low for 6-7 hours. Once everything is cooked, take your chicken out and shred it with 2 forks. Add the chicken back into the crockpot and stir everything to incorporate cream cheese. Serve with crackers, cheddar, or over rice. This is also good as leftovers in a burrito! This makes a pretty good crockpot full of chili and has even gotten me second place in a chili cookoff at my kid's school a few years ago.

  • Taylor Swift Reputation Donuts

    Reputation is coming. You know it! I know it! The question is, are we ready for it? I think her re-record of her Reputation album is going to be amazing and I'm hoping it drops later this month. In honor of our Reputation Era being on the horizon (fingers crossed) I made some Taylor Swift Reputation Donuts that look like they have friendship bracelets on them. Taylor Swift Reputation Donuts Ingredients: Donuts - chocolate because it's dark for Reputation. I got mine from Dunkin but feel free to get whatever kind you want. Candy eyeballs edible pen markers Mini star sprinkles - I used the red and white ones rainbow chip crunch sprinkles - I used red and black white pearl sprinkles silver pearl sprinkles Writing icing - black or white Directions: Once you have all your supplies you can start assembling your Reputation Donuts. I decided what word I wanted to write on my friendship bracelet before I started creating each donut. Using your edible food maker, flip the candy eyeballs over and write out your phrase letter by letter on each eyeball. Here is a list of Reputation inspired lyrics/phrases you can use. I put stars by the ones I used: *Big Rep *LWYMMD (Look what you made me do) *End Game *A Team *Ready 4 It *King of my "heart" *123, LGB (chant from the Eras tour) *Rep Era Ocean blue eyes Daisy Poison Ivy Be my jailer Light me up Dress Getaway Car Go, go, go I fancy you Best of times Golden tattoo Don't blame me Let the games begin "games begin" Love made me crazy In my dreams Island Breeze American Queen New Years Day CIWYW (Call it what you want) So it goes IDSB (I did something bad) Gorgeous TIWWCHNT (This is why we can't have nice things) Rep Cuz she's dead Delicate There are so many good phrases you could use. The shorter ones work better for bracelets and donuts so keep that in mind. On your donut, draw a circle on the top to be the outline of your "friendship bracelet" design. Carefully stick each letter on the spell out your word. Once you've created your word continue filling in the bracelet with different sprinkles. I kept to the red, black, white, and silver color scheme. This would be fun at a Taylor Swift-themed party or even for the Superbowl because we know Swifties are representing this year! The phrases - End game, Big rep, A team.... all work great for this Superbowl! These are fun to make and to eat! Be sure to check out our other Taylor Swift page for more Taylor-inspired posts and if you're making these for the Superbowl, why not make some friendship bracelet glasses to go with them? We are going to be wearing our red King of My Heart glasses during the game as we cheer on the Chiefs and Travis. I don't even feel bad about it.

  • Free Printable Valentine Cards for Swifties

    We are in our Valentine era and we're loving it! We have shared watercolor lover cookies, DIY bracelet glasses, and friendship bracelet skewers and fondue! Today, we're sharing some super cute free printable Valentine's Day cards for Swifties! These would be perfect for your little Swiftie to give out to their class or friends this Valentine's Day! These cards are the perfect mix of classic conversation heart candies and Taylor Swift lyrics. We created 4 different but similar designs. Download our free Swiftie Valentine's here. These would be so cute attached to a pack of conversation hearts or add a friendship bracelet to each one! Save this to your Pinterest board for Valentine's Day so you can find it later! For more Valentine's Day content, head over to our Valentine's Day page to read them all. Looking for another holiday or want to browse by season, we have that too.

  • Edible Friendship Bracelet Skewers

    If you are having some friends over for a party and want a quick wow factor, our easy chocolate fondue and edible friendship bracelet skewers are the way to go. These fruit skewers are inspired by the friendship bracelets from the Eras tour and our girl Taylor Swift. This would be a perfect snack for Valentine's Day, Taylor Swift party, or a book club get-together. If you missed our Taylor Swift Eras-inspired book recommendations, you should go check it out Edible Friendship Bracelet Skewers Fruit - I choose to use strawberries and raspberries Marshmallows - These will be your letter "beads" Edible pens - Easy to create your letters on the marshmallows Donut holes - because why not, they taste amazing in the chocolate fondue Bamboo skewers - Dip them in water to make it easier to slide on the marshmallows These edible pens were so easy to use. I used the dab technique instead of dragging the pen across the marshmallow to get clean lines. You can either pre-make these for everyone to have plated when they arrive. They would make cute placeholders for where people might sit. Or, you can have everything divided into bowls for each person to create their own edible friendship bracelet skewer during the party. Strawberry Hearts Also, strawberries cut into heart shapes are easy and fun for these fruit skewers. I simply cut a V shape a the top by the stem and then round up the edges so it's smooth. The left side is rounded and the right side isn't rounded yet. I also felt like they were too big so I cut them in half as well.

  • Easy Chocolate Fondue

    This chocolate fondue is so easy to make and only takes 3 ingredients and about 5 minutes to pull together. Something about chocolate fondue feels so decadent and fancy, but honestly, this recipe is so simple and can be made in various ways. Chocolate fondue is a fun thing to make for your Valentine or Galentine party! Easy Chocolate Fondue Note: I make mine in a fondue pot but you can also make a double boiler. 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips (about 2 cups) 1 cup heavy cream 1 tsp vanilla In a fondue pot or double boiler add in your chocolate chips and heavy cream. Heat over low heat, stirring often. You'll want to mix the cream and chocolate at the same time to keep the cream from getting too hot too quickly and curdling. 2. Once it's melted together add in your vanilla and stir together. 3. Keep your fondue on a low heat setting and serve with fruit, cookies, donut holes, or anything that sounds good dipped in chocolate. This fondue has a really great chocolate flavor and is super smooth and creamy and perfectly dippable! Tips and tricks I have a slightly older version of this Cuisinart Electric Fondue Pot but if you don't have one or don't want to invest in one, then you can heat your chocolate over a double boiler (see below for tips) and transfer to a bowl for serving at the table. If you have a little more time you can even make this in a mini crockpot and it will stay warm and dippable for a while. You can also add things to your fondue to make it slightly different, like caramel chocolate yum! Fondue Variations You can add in a scoop of caramel sauce or peanut butter to add some different flavors to your chocolate. You can also try it with milk or dark chocolate if you prefer those. I personally like semisweet because it feels like it has a better balance with the other sweet fruits and foods you are dipping into it. Fondue Dippers There are so many things you can dip in your chocolate fondue! Here are some ideas to get you started: strawberries pound cake potato chips bacon pineapple candy oranges donut holes ritz crackers raspberries bananas cheesecake bites gummy worms peanut brittle pretzels rice crispy treats cookies blueberries apples animal crackers How to make a double boiler To make a double boiler, you need two pots that are the same size across so that they can stack on top of each other without the top one falling into the bottom one. You're bottom pot you're going to enough water to cover the bottom of your pot and then some. You'll place the botttom pot over low heat. Then, you'll place your top bot over the pot with the water. This is the pot that you will melt you chocolate in. The bottom pot will get all simmery and steamy and provide heat for your top pot so it can melt the chocolate without burning it. Happy dipping!

  • Watercolor Lover Cookies

    Valentine's Day is such a fun holiday for me. It's a time to just show the people you love, that you love them! These Valentine Watercolor Lover-inspired Cookies are a beautiful and sweet way to show adoration for your Valentine, Galentine, or besties! Ready to decorate your cookies? Jump to Hardening Icing or Watercolor Cookies technique. Start with your favorite sugar cookie. I used a package mix and followed the directions to make cut-out cookies. I rolled them out and cut them out using a heart-shaped cookie cutter for Valentine’s Day. No judgment here if you find store-bought sugar cookies easier. The fun part of these cookies is the pretty watercolor icing. I mean, just look at that gorgeous ombre design! Ok, let's start on how to make them. The hardening cookie icing creates a smooth, hard base for you to watercolor on. I used to think this was a hard trick to master, but after trying my hand at this simple frosting, I realized how easy it is! Hardening Cookie Icing - 1 batch 1 cup powdered sugar 1 tablespoon milk 1 tablespoon light corn syrup You will also need: plastic baggie or piping bag toothpick bowls and spoons scissors if you are using a plastic baggie In a medium bowl, mix together the 3 ingredients until smooth. I make 2 batches of this icing for my cookies. The first batch has a little bit less milk, more like the consistency of toothpaste. I put it in a plastic baggie (or piping bag if you want to be fancy) and cut the tip off. I use that batch to create the outline of my cookie. For the second batch, I made it just a bit more fluid, so that it “floods” the outline of the cookie and creates a nice smooth frosting. Just add a tiny bit more milk until you like the consistency of it. Repeat the same step of adding it to a baggie with the tip cut off. Squeeze it onto your cookie. Use the toothpick to pop any bubbles and help spread the icing so that it covers the cookie. NOTE: I let my cookies sit for about an hour to harden before I painted them to make sure it was fully hardened. Now, for the fun part! Let’s “watercolor” paint our cookies. Once your icing is hard, create your watercolors using food coloring and clear vanilla extract. I used both liquid and gel food coloring and both worked fine. Lover Watercolor Cookies Food coloring (gel or drops) Clear vanilla extract food safe paintbrush clean paint pallette gold sprinkles (optional) In a small dish or new paint palette mix together a few drops of food coloring with your clear vanilla extract. I created a variety of shades using red and pink with different ratios of vanilla extract. Then, paint your cookies with a clean, new paintbrush. Do not use a craft paintbrush for this. Have fun playing around with different designs. I found I liked giving my cookie a wash of clear vanilla extract before adding my colors. This allowed the colors to bleed together differently, giving it an even more watercolor look. I created unique ombre designs with my cookies but you can do whatever looks pleasing to you. Play around with different amounts of food coloring and vanilla extract to create pretty patterns. I even added some gold sprinkles to a few cookies for some texture and glam. Be sure to check out our other Valentine's Day posts. This page will be updated as we continue to add more fun ideas!

  • 10 Ways to Hygge this Winter

    Hygge, pronounced "hoo-ga" is a Scandinavian word meaning finding cozy contentment and well-being. It's all about enjoying life's simple pleasures. Winter is a great time to slow down and practice Hygge. Not only does it help ward off the winter blues, but it also helps us embrace and celebrate the gift that is the colder, darker months of the winter season. I live in Arizona, so my winter is definitely sunnier and warmer than most, but I still plan to Hygge these next few months. Today I'm sharing 10 ways to hygge this winter! 10 Ways to Hygge this Winter Cook something - Bake cookies or bread this Winter. Indulge in some comfort food. Personally, I love a big bowl of spaghetti. Read a book - cozy up under a warm blanket and take some time to read something. Here are some books I want to read this year! Listen to music - we have a record player that we enjoy playing music on. One of my goals this year is to discover a new artist. Make breakfast - Breakfast is sometimes overlooked and rushed, take time to make a breakfast you wouldn't normally have time for. Try our breakfast casserole or whipped ricotta French toast. Buy fresh flowers - While it may be dreary and cold outside, we can always bring some bright and colorful flowers into our space. The grocery store usually has a cheap bouquet you can treat yourself with. Or get a new house plant to add some greenery to your space. Add some lights - Light a candle or add twinkle lights somewhere in your house. Who says twinkle lights can only be used for Christmas?! I especially like to do this when I'm taking a bath or reading a book. Craft something - Pinterest is full of fun crafty and DIY ideas! We love trying new crafts. Play a board game - Have some quality family or friend time and play a game together. We shared our favorite board games for families if you're looking for a new one to try out with the family. Go for a winter walk - bundle up and head out into the cold. It's very refreshing to breathe in the crisp cool air and move your body. Bonus points if you live somewhere snowy, it feels magical to walk in the snow. Get together with a friend - maybe cook a meal together, watch a classic film, or just lounge around in comfy clothes and catch up over a warm drink. So, embrace this little reminder that it's okay to slow down and do little things that bring you joy! If you like these hygge ideas, be sure to check out the 100 things to do this year. We're focusing on 24 fun things in 24! Learn a secret handshake? Was that on your 2024 bingo card?

  • DIY Friendship Bracelet Glasses

    These DIY friendship bracelet glasses are fun to make and cute to wear! Perfect for your Eras tour outfit, Taylor Swift party, or Valentine's Day goodie for your friends or besties! DIY Friendship Bracelet Glasses Supplies: Heart-shaped glasses Beads - I used these alphabet beads and these glass beads super glue tweezers - I used some old Revlon ones I have but use whatever you have or like I liked that pack of heart-shaped glasses from Amazon because they came in 14 gorgeous colors! You could probably make a pair of glasses inspired by each of her albums. But, we only did a few for my daughter's friends and kept the Valentine-themed phrases as well. Let's get started. Instructions: Once you've gathered all your supplies, decide on what color glasses you will create and what phrase you want on there. I picked out most of my beads ahead of time. The letters and the colors I wanted to go with it to make my friendship bracelet design. Choose 3 or 4 colors to create your design. 3. You're going to decide where to start your phrase or word. I started with my "be mine" beads about here (see above) and added a small line of glue near the edge of the top of the glasses. 4. I added a few beads at a time making sure to line them up correctly. 5. Once you've placed those beads, add another small line of glue and continue building your word. 6. Once you've got your word built, it's time to create the friendship bracelet effect by gluing your smaller beads in a line across the top of the glasses. I liked to pick three or four colors to create a pattern with my beads. 7. This part was a bit more tedious and required me to use the tweezers to get the beads placed how I wanted. 8. Imagine the glue is the string and place your beads oriented as if they are on string to get the most authentic look. One tip that helped me was to only do a few beads at a time and then let them dry a little bit before trying to add more. That way if a bead was crooked as I was placing it and I tried to fix it then it didn't mess up the whole line. TIP: You do want to be careful using super glue. It dries quickly and sticks to your fingers making it hard to work if you touch it. Work in sections and be patient. You can play around with colors, patterns, words, or phrases that you like. I did my Lover-inspired glasses by winding my friendship bracelet down to the other side but then I didn't like it as much. It's still pretty but I think I would stick to making my bracelet design only go across the top. But, maybe you want to make them look like bracelets going around each heart! That could be fun. One of my favorite designs to make was this King of My Heart-themed red glasses.

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