oreo cookie balls recipe advent countdown

Oreo cookie ball Advent Countdown

Continuing our festive advent countdowns, here’s a fun idea that the grown-ups will get into too! It’s as simple as picking your favorite treat; I made Oreo cookie balls with caramel, hard shell chocolate, and sea salt. After showing some serious constraint (they are so delicious!), I numbered each cookie ball for the countdown. You could use any treat or a mixture to make a countdown that will be sweet the entire month long.  

Posted November 20, 2013 1 Comment
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{because your pie has something to say}

typography pie + thanksgiving treats

Typography Pie >> A Subtle Revelry

After realizing earlier this year how fabulously fun it was to make our dessert talk – al’a a typography cake. We figure the holidays are a great time to relive the concept but even better, because now it’s typography in a pie!

A talking pie that can be made in any flavor with any word you choose (unless your word is supercalafragalisticexpialadoshus). Have a birthday boy who loves his pie, want to wish joy at the annual Christmas pie exchange, maybe just a nice statement of thanks at the feast table this month? No matter what you have to say, it will be SO MUCH better said in a pie.

Typography Pie >> A Subtle Revelry

Typography Pie >> A Subtle Revelry

Typography Pie >> A Subtle Revelry

Typography Pie >> A Subtle Revelry

To make the typography pie you’ll need: double pie crust (ready-made or refrigerated, but not shell as you’ll need to form letters from the dough. You can also use a homemade pie crust recipe). Pie filling (we made a pumpkin pie but this could be done in any flavor). Mini alphabet cutters (we used a set where the letters are 1″ high, 0.75″ deep, 0.5-0.75″ wide).

Start by preheating the oven to 400F. Prepare pie crust. Roll out a single layer to desired thickness; this will be the layer you will cut the letters from. Decide the word or saying you wish to place inside the pie; it could be anything! Make sure the word will fit in a pie plate, starting from the center to the outer edge of the pie plate. Take the cutters that spell your word and cut out the letters from the dough. We decided on the word FEAST and created the word 8 times from dough. Lay your letters on a parchment-lined pan. Stick in the oven for 5-7 minutes. Remove and let cool.  

Posted November 19, 2013 5 Comments
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8 holiday office party hacks

8 Holiday Office Party Hacks

Tis the season for holiday parties of all kinds. But if we’re being honest, our office party can sometimes be the most awkward party of the year. Well, I made it my mission recently to think of the best ways to change office parties from the most awkward, to the most fun. Here are 8 simple and great ways to up the ante and make sure your office holiday party is the best this year – no lampshade wearing necessary!

Holiday Office Party Hacks | Cotton Candy Ornament Shots

Holiday Office Party Hacks | Cotton Candy Ornament Shots

1. A fun way to make the ornament exchange just a little sweeter this year – use the ornaments as party cups! These ornaments were purchased at our local craft store (choose from glass or plastic) and the top hanger was replaced with a festive straw. I love the look of them filled with cotton candy, and when a shot of Smirnoff No.21 is added – they instantly turn into a candied sweet sipper that will add a dose of festive whimsy to the holiday party.

Holiday Office Party Hacks | Reindeer Ice

Holiday Office Party Hacks | Reindeer Ice

2. Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixion can certainly do more then wait while Santa empties his sleigh – they can keep the drinks chilled all night long. Make these reindeer ice cubes with one brown pipe cleaner bent into shape. They look great in a clear ice bowl along with snow and red balls reminiscent of Rudolph.  

Posted November 18, 2013 5 Comments
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favorite christmas gift – soup delivery

Christmas gift idea: bring homemade soup in a pretty pot - your friends will adore it and you!

Last year, I found a new favorite Christmas gift to give. I cooked up a couple batches of my favorite homemade soup and collected pretty soup pots throughout the month. I filled them with soup and brought that with a crusty loaf of french bread to a few chosen friends. The gift was accompanied with a simple note and thawing instructions.

The soup could be frozen and pulled out whenever a quick dinner in December is needed. I’ve never had such a happy response to a gift. Friends were thrilled to have a homemade dinner on hand, and a pretty pot to keep made the gift a special one to keep.

The best Christmas gift for friends | delivery soup!

Deliver soup in a pretty pot - great Christmas gift idea.

This year I am expanding the gift to give to teachers, neighbors, and anyone who might be blessed by an easy dinner during the craziest month of the year. Wrapping up the crusty bread with ribbons gives it an extra special touch. I made a few batches of my favorite soup – Pasta E Fagioli this weekend with Contadina tomatoes. It’s a soup I’ve been making for the last 10 years and our family’s favorite way to warm up.

In the event you want to give the gift of dinner this year or make the soup for yourself, here is my recipe for Pasta E Fagioli with Sausage (leave out the sausage for vegetarian friends).  

Posted November 17, 2013 4 Comments
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12 creative advent calendars

12 Creative Advent Calendars

You guys… I bought a black Christmas tree for a holiday shoot we had yesterday! It is my absolute new favorite decoration. I’ve seen white trees around, and even a few cute pink ones, but I really can’t wait to show you my new black tree. It’s so pretty! While I play Christmas music early this weekend and continue to get in the mood here is a collection of 12 really creative advent calendars to inspire us all for the season.

Advent starts December 1st! Did you see our festive pyramid Advent calendar this week? It’s the first of our Advent posts, more coming soon.

The above photo box advent would be a great way to give treats and display family photos during the season. I love the sentimentality it brings, find it at Zoe De Las Cases.

25 Creative Advent Calendars | Bright pink inspiration by DaWanda

Such a festive concept behind this advent calendar that Dawanda makes. It would be easy to recreate at home with a collection of white boxes and simple bright stickers to make the entire family giddy.  

Posted November 15, 2013 6 Comments
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turkey tinfoil and lightened-up pumpkin pie

How to make a turkey with tin foil. Fun way to present Thanksgiving leftovers!

Looking for a quick way to make your guests smile this Thanksgiving? Turkey tinfoil to-go bags will do the trick! They are really easy to make and will turn leftovers into a fun present to take home.

Turkey tin foil to go bag

Here’s how to make the turkey tinfoil to-go bags: Place your leftovers in the middle of a piece of tinfoil and fold over the top on both sides. Pinch one end of the tinfoil and shape up to form the beak – then pinch in the other end and fan the tinfoil out and make a few cuts down to mimic turkey feathers. Stick pretty feathers in the bottom and present to your guests with a smile.  

Posted November 15, 2013 Comments Off
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