Snacks for All

I admit it, I’m a big fan of snacking.  While I do enjoy dinners, snacks keep me going through the day.  It’s important to choose snack foods that are good for you though, here are some recipes that you can use to upgrade your snacks.

Trail Mix:

Almond lovers

Cranberry nut

Good morning gorp

Caramel corn party mix

Oat nut crunch

Nuts, seeds and papayas

Sweet Snacks:

Strawberry fool

Chocolate bark

Peanut butter granola balls

Dessert nachos

Blueberry smoothie

Orange banana smoothie

Quinoa, apricot nut clusters

Take Alongs:

Balls of energy

Breakfast bars

Fig and walnut bars

Apple pecan muffins

Whole wheat chocolate chip muffins

Apple cinnamon bars

Yam and jam muffins

Savory Snacks:

Chili tortilla chips

Mango salsa scoops

Green herb hummus

Flavored popcorn

Veggie chips

What are your go to snacks?

Inspirational Spirituals

“Swing low, sweet chariot,
Coming for to carry me home
Swing low, sweet chariot,
Coming for to carry me home

I looked over Jordan, and I what did I see
Coming for to carry me home?
A band of angels coming after me
Coming for to carry me home

If you get there before I do
Coming for to carry me home
Tell all my friends I coming too
Coming for to carry me home

I’m sometimes up, I’m sometimes down
Coming for to carry me home
But still my soul feels heavenly bound
Coming for to carry me home”

I grew up hearing this and some of the other famous spirituals, both those from the slave years and the years of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Each time I hear this song, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, or another like it, I’m reminded of the past, both mine and that of African Americans.  This month as we’re celebrating Black History, I wanted to take a moment to honor the creative souls who came up with these songs.

This song reveals a lot about creativity, both in words and in creation.  Let’s see how creativity unites us all:

First, the only colors creativity sees are the ones used in words or artistry. It isn’t a “picker” of persons, and anyone can be creative, no matter what you look like or who you are.

Second, much of creativity does have to do with that “something bigger” many of us feel in life.  Whether you call it God, Being, Abba, or something else, creativity often is used to both display and understand what we’re all doing here, and who we are.

Third, creativity connects people.  It doesn’t matter if you were alive when David was carved, the Pyramids were built, rock music was born or tapestries were woven, just by witnessing these things you too can connect with the artist.

Finally, love what you do regardless of the recognition.  Those who sang the spirituals initially weren’t recognized as master singers or writers in their day, and many artists are never truly recognized for their potential.  That doesn’t make what you’re creating any less important.

If you’re a creative person, keep creating, the world is just waiting for your work.  If you’re less artistically talented, don’t let that worry you, you can do your part to spread the beauty of creativity too.  Tell a friend about something creative or thank an artist today!

Cheery Cherry Choices

I can tell no lie, I like cherries!  In this season of all things love, red, pink and presidential, here are some delicious cherry flavored edibles.

Breakfast & Snacks

Crunchy granola

Cherry vanilla smoothie

Cherry berry tea smoothies

Cherry hungry caterpillar

Cherry jam

Cherry nut muffins


Cherry cheesecake

Chocolate cherry mice

Italian cherry bread pudding

Cherry pie

Chocolate cherry brioche

Tart cherry ice cream

Frozen banana split

Pineapple upside-down biscuits

Cherry winks

Chewy cherry almond bars

Cherry fudge

Cherries jubilee

Lemon cherry trifle

Cherry meringue bites

Cherry squares

Fruitcake drops 

Of course, you could always just eat your cherries au natural!  What’s your favorite thing to make with cherries?

Creating Random Acts of Kindness

This week we have the Random Acts of Kindness week, the week devoted to promoting and encouraging random acts of kindness.  If you’ve been following along on any of my blogs for a while you should have figured out that I love random acts of kindness.  I think it’s super important as a society to be considerate of and investing in the lives of others.  As I was perusing the RAK website, I ran across this article which talks about 10 things that science says will make you happy. The list includes things like

Savor Everyday Moments
Avoid Comparisons
Make Friends, Treasure Family
Smile Even When You Don’t Feel Like It
Give It Away, Give It Away Now!

Each person you meet is a waiting adventure in a random act of kindness.  You have the creative ability to inspire hope and share kindness in every life.

Some really simple ways to do RAK’s are:

-retweet tweets on twitter/like posts on facebook and reply to both too!


-include a special note with each item you sell.  It could be a “form” postcard that you just stick in the package each time, but letting your clients know that you appreciate the purchase and their choice to invest with you

-choose to fight and argue less, and communicate more (communication takes lots of creativity!).

-create!  Yes, making what you make can make someone’s day.

What intentional (or random) kind things will you do this week?

Friends with Love

Today for Feature Friday I’m featuring some of my favorite Feature Friday friend’s valentine designs.

Michelle Lisa Mosaics: light switch cover, lamp.

Finding Charm: earrings, necklace, bracelet, earring set, anklet.

Color Bakery: Hearts of art pin

Kreative Notions: I found love journal, be mine valentine’s

SwtTsCrafts: friend love, wood storage box.

Faerymoongoddess: love flies free earrings

Debra’s Designs: mother of pearl bracelet, love pendant.

Origami Spirit: keep the romance alive

Yesterday’s Trash Art: loving cookies with icing

BluKatDesign: earrings, statement necklace.

More Than Colors: love stained glass sign, I fancy you stained glass heart.

HoneyBeeAffairs: patriotic crocheted coasters, crocheted washcloths.

HockmanGirl: gunmetal locket, diamond heart earrings.

Bent & Twisted Creations: heart bookmark

GaelicForge: stone pendant

GardenVibe: blossoming love earrings, warming to you earrings.

Juergen Roth: love me tender photo, pink orchid photo.

S S Soap: lavender, strawberry banana, bath bombs.

Jewelry by Debby Designs: silver heart cabachon, red and white love earrings, smooth white earrings.

Ginalimosaics: valentine’s sea glass decoration, stained glass heart necklace, heart locket.

Thank you to my creative friends for their beautiful work!  If you’d like to be featured on Feature Friday, contact me here or let me know below.


Ready for Love Recipes

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away!  Hopefully you’ve started making plans for yourself or your partner already, but if not here are some dessert, breakfast and dinner ideas to inspire some love.


Chocolate: crunchy nut clusters, chocolate midnight pie, choco mallow, chocolate clusters, chocolate dipped strawberries, chocolate nuggets, chocolate intemperance, caramel chocolate seduction, chocolate valentine hearts, molten mocha cakes, magic brownies, chocolate pots de creme, chocolate souffle with red berry cream.

Cake & Pie: cherry cheesecake, cherry pie, NY cheesecake, cinnamon and carrot cake cupcakes, molten white chocolate cupcakes,

Cookies and more: lovin, lemony love potion, creme brule, raspberry tarts, lovin spoonfuls, heart tarts, coeur a la creme, happy hearts.


Heart pancakes

Heart shaped eggs and toast

Cranberry sweetheart scones

Pomegranate ginger sparklers

Pancakes with maple raspberry sauce

French toast with orange cardamom sauce

Chocolate strawberry stuffed french toast

Pomegranate muffins

Cinnamon buns

Lemon love buns

Berry parfaits

Berry mimosa mocktail

Strawberry salad with balsamic cardamom dressing


Lobster salad with tarragon citrus dressing

Artichoke, asparagus, asiago pizzas

Valentine pizza

Shrimp scampi with linguini

Hasselback potatoes

What are you planning for Valentine’s Day?  Share your suggestions below.

Crafted with Love

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner!  I’ve been seeing some great love-themed creations by my Feature Friday friends and will be sharing some of them this Friday.  But today I’ve got a collection of some fun crafts and activities for your Valentine fun!

Caped cute sader

Adoily-able t-shirt

Warm hearts

Love beads

Stained glass hearts

Heart pins and magnets

Critter cards

Marbelized valentine

More fun with marbles

Valentine treat cups

Hearts and blocks valentines

Heart shaped soap

Scratch off valentine cards

Hearts and quilts

Valentine’s card carrier ideas

What will you be creating this Valentine’s Day with love?

FF: LilGuy Stationary

Feature Friday is back after a short break with the winter holidays.  Today we’re talking with Kim of LilGuy Stationary!  She creates beautiful stationary and invites for weddings and more.

Why are you passionate about stationary and being creative, and what made you start a business?

My maternal grandfather was a self-taught artist so I guess I take after him on the creativity side, although regrettably I can’t draw! I started my business after making my own wedding invitations in 2008 when people were asking me where I’d got them as they thought they’d been made professionally. I started building up the business whilst I was still working as a credit controller for a holiday company and knew that I preferred the creative work to working with finance. When it became an option to leave the day job in 2010 I jumped at the chance, with encouragement from my husband, so that I could concentrate on my own business full time.

What is some of your inspiration and do you have any favorite stationary you’ve made?

My inspiration comes from a lot of different things, from architecture to mehndi patterns, sometimes I sit with a variety of ribbons, flowers and embellishments in front of me and find a combination that I find works. I’m also inspired by my dogs, you can read the story behind the LilGuy name here, as well as seeing examples of the bespoke stationery.  My current favorite is this Peacock Invitation, made with a 15cm Kings Blue square wallet decorated with a wide ivory ribbon, silver diamante flower embellishment and a real peacock eye feather.  I also love this crystal rose stationary box.

What are some of your future plans and hopes?

In the last year I have consistently had work published in national and regional wedding magazines in the UK, which I still get a thrill from each time I see one of my photos printed! I try to source different embellishments direct from the manufacturers to make my work stand apart from others as I think brides want something to make their wedding unique. We can cater for all budgets, from luxurious silk or velvet covered padded invitation boxes and folios to bespoke stationery to suit your style and theme, as well as having some budget price invitations which still give great quality.

You can connect with Kim and the Lil’ Guys on Facebook, Twitter, the website, and the blog.

Thanks Kim!  I love your work and can’t wait to see what new things you come up with! 

Game Day Celebration

The 2012 Superbowl is just a few days away!  If you’re getting ready for the big game, here are some last minute ideas to add some ‘wow’ to your fun night.

Make an edible bowl to serve chips or snacks in.

Use a football for extra seating.

Use pillow cases to make “jersey” chair covers complete with numbers of your favorite players.

Use printed scrapbook papers for napkin rings, pennants and any other decorations that need a little extra pop.

If you’re looking to dress up your buffet table but don’t want to mess up cherished pictures, lay them out on the table and then put a sheet of clear thick plastic or glass over them.

For some adult fun, try these 3 drinking games.

Tint drinks with food coloring to make them match the team colors.

Plan the cooking ahead of time so that you’ll know when to put things in to optimize your game watching time.

Don’t forget lots of napkins and paper towels for the moments when things get upset over the excitement of the game!

And may the best team win!