Olivia at age 3

Another credit to Pinterest, best place on the internet!

  • Recite your whole name:  Olivia Kipp Brown
  • How old are you:  2 (but really 3)
  • Favorite color:  pink and purple
  • What to you want to be when you grow up: a pirate princess
  • Favorite movie:   Rio, Tinkerbelle, and Ariel (The Little Mermaid)
  • Favorite food:  Fruit
  • Least favorite food:  Onions
  • Favorite song to sing:  Twinkle Twinkle
  • Games:  Hullabalu, I Spy
  • What makes you sad:  When a toy is taken away for not listening
  • What makes me happy:  When I get the toy back
  • Favorite friends:  Kennady, Mason, Eli
  • Coolest person I know:  Mom  (no prompting from the interviewer on that one!)
For Olivia's 3rd birthday, we had a Tinkerbelle themed birthday party and she had a blast.  Family came over for cake and snacks and she got a TON of awesome gifts!

She is a handful and there are days when she tests my patience to the limits, but I couldn't imagine live without her, nor would I ever really want to!


Toasted Ravioli

Courtesy of The Food Network Magazine - October 2011 Issue

They have these at restaurants for appetizers and you know what a lover of Happy Hour I am.  Now I can do it at home, save a few bucks - and not have to worry about the toddler freaking out when she can't play Angry Birds on my phone anymore!

3/4 to 1 lb fresh ravioli (meat and/or cheese)
3 large eggs, beaten
1 1/2 c milk
2 c breadcrumbs
3 tsp finely chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
vegetable oil, for frying
1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
Marinara for dipping

Spread ravioli out on baking sheet and freeze until hard - 20-30 minutes

Whisk eggs and milk in shallow dish or pie plate.  Mix the breadcrumbs, herbs and 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper in another shallow dish.

Dip ravioli in egg mixture, letting the excess drip off, then coat with breadcrumbs.  Return to baking sheet and freeze until hard, about 15 minutes.

Head about 1 inch vegetable oil in deep skillet until deep-fry thermometer registers 350.  Fry ravioli in 2 or 3 batches, turning as needed, until golden brown (4-6 minutes per batch).

Transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain and immediately sprinkle with the Parmesan.  Serve with marinara sauce.


DIY Coasters

The Etsy shop has taken up a lot of my "free" time that I would generally use for fun crafting, but I'm taking a short break to make these coasters.  All while watching an old episode of "The Middle."  {Sidebar:  SUPER excited for fall TV!!}

Super easy, super fun.  I see Christmas gifts in my future!!

Get your supplies:
  • Mod Podge - use near open window.  Got a little bit of a buzzy headache from doing this downstairs!
  • A sponge brush
  • ceramic tiles - I got mine from Home Depot for a whopping 16 cents a piece!
  • decorative paper - I used a mat stack from Archivers for coordinating colors - save on time and assembly and trim your paper to fit the tile.  I cut mine to 4 inches square thinking that's what the size of the tile was, but you'll see, they were a TINY bit large, so I have a cute white boarder on each.  Accident turned genius!

Brush a thin layer of Modge Podge onto the blank tile...

Carefully place your paper on the glued tile.  You'll have a SMALL window to wiggle the paper to re-position if necessary, but the glue sets pretty quickly to move fast, but carefully.

 Brush another thin layer over the entire tile, paper and all.

Let set, about 15 minutes according to the bottle's instructions and repeat a few more times.  I did a total of three coats.

 Gorgeous all on their own.  A quick spray of clear sealer and some felt on the bottom to prevent scratching and these are ready for a glass of wine!



Cake Pops

I made these for my best friend, Genna's baby shower.  Super easy and quite the show stoppers!

Sorry there aren't step by step photos for this one, but I'm guessing you'll be able to figure it out!

You'll need:
  • Cake mix (prepared as directed and let cool)
  • Can of frosting (you'll use about 1/3 - 1/2 of the can)
  • Chocolate bark for dipping
  • Sprinkles or other decorations
  • Lollipop sticks (you can find these in the cake decorating aisle of a Michael's, or other craft store)
Take your prepared cake and cut into smaller chunks.  Use a stand mixer (or hand-held if that's what you've got) to break apart the cake into a crumb mixture.  Add your frosting - start with a small amount and add more as you go.  You'll want the consistency of cookie dough when you're done.

Form little cake balls, about 1 1/2 inches across.  This is where a cookie scoop comes in very handy!  Place on a baking sheet lined with wax or parchment paper and chill for at least 1 hour.  Don't freeze.

Melt your bark coating and dab a small amount on the "flat" side of the cake ball.  Insert the lollipop stick in a little more than 1/2 way.  Repeat for all of them and let chill another 20-30 minutes before dipping.  This will help keep the stick in place so your cake balls don't slide down or break!

Dip and decorate.  I'd recommend having a Styrofoam block to let the dipped cake dry and set.  Laying them down, you'll just have a flat ugly spot.  They'll still taste good - just depends on how fancy you want to be!

Showering with Love (and diapers!)

This past weekend I was able to host a fantastic shower for my good friend, Genna.  She's expecting her first baby (a girl!!) in late October.  After I had my own baby shower, 3 years ago (yickes!) I called dibs on the shower for Genna and was thrilled to have my turn to return the favor!

I had a lot of fun decorating and cooking for this affair.  I finally used the paper I'd bought for scrapbooking - what was I waiting for!  A scallop punch, a glue stick and yarn helped make a dozen or so garlands that hung from the front door, chandelier in the dining room and even on the bathroom mirror.  I also made a pattern for a pennant flags (the photo didn't really turn out) - and hung those around the living room.  So easy and basically free seeing how I'd bought the paper ages ago.  That money was long gone!

The food was a light spread of salads and desserts.  An Asian coleslaw, a pesto pea salad - and the desserts!  Chocolate cakes pops, strawberry shortcake kabobs and mini fruit pizzas.

It was a lot of fun - I was happy to host it for my friend and can't wait to meet the newest baby girl in my world!


Cake pops - click to follow to recipe

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