Summer’s Over Celebration

Easy entertaining

Happy Friday loves! It’s been such a long week for me full of ups and downs but I wanted to share with you something pretty and creative to make you smile. Since summer is coming to a close, now is the perfect time to throw a little backyard party celebrating the end of the season. The best part is, all the summer stuff is on clearance!

For a summer gathering, you need splashes of color and little vintage touches. I love hydrangeas during this season. Especially white ones because they go with everything. I go to my local grocery store and can find a fairly large bouquet for about $15. They make the best centerpieces for a table! To add a vintage touch, use a wire basket to put them in during the party. Obviously, they can’t live without water for very long so keep them in a vase before guests arrive.

A really nice vintage touch to your tableware is drinks served in mason jars. I know, how Pinterest of me, right? Normally, I hate mason jars for events (especially weddings) but for little BBQs or outdoor things, I think it works. Serve up a fruity drink in these classic containers!

I also love vibrant colors during the summer and I think that they should be a part of our table settings! At Kohl’s, all of their summer table linens are starting to hit the clearance racks. Now is the time to stock up for next year and get at least one use out of them sometime soon.

One of the things that I keep going back to in all of my posts is the great stuff I can find at TJ Maxx. It’s a place I will shop at no matter how wealthy I am. I find so many neat things at great prices there. Just like many other stores, a lot of their summer stuff is on clearance now too so go take advantage of it! Host a little party this weekend and create a beautiful table setting from the fun, quirky things you can find on clearance.

Tell me what your end-of-the-season traditions are!

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Lilly Pulitzer for My College Graduation

Good morning lovelies! I’m sitting in bed eating granola and yogurt trying to convince myself not to eat the chocolate covered strawberries in the refrigerator. That’s easier said than done. I need the chocolate to get through the next round of job applications I’m sending out. I swear, this never ends!

lilly_pulitzer_springI mentioned in a previous post, that my graduation is coming up in May and I want to celebrate by buying myself a Lilly Pulitzer dress to wear for the big day! During my trip to Charleston, I tried a few on and snapped some pictures to show you. I didn’t buy any of them as I would prefer my mom and best friend to help me choose one. Yes, I realize it sounds like I’m wedding dress shopping but for me, this is the biggest day of my life! I accomplished this solely on my own and its worthy of celebration!

I also wanted your opinion on the dresses I tried on. The girls in the Lilly store were so kind and gave me great feedback but there’s nothing like having people you care about (hint: that’s you gals)¬†giving you a thumbs up or down.

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I absolutely loved this cut and style. Very flattering on my figure! Sorry it’s a bit blurry. My iPhone camera is starting to go.

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lilly_pulitzer_shift_dress
I accidentally tried on the size 6 in this dress. I’m usually a size 8. I managed to squeeze into it but it wasn’t without some twisting and contorting!
lilly_pulitzer_preppy
I absolutely loved this one! My only complaint was that my bra straps showed and I’d need to wear a strapless bra. Anyone who’s ever worn one knows how awful they are.

Leave a comment and tell me which one you like the most!

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3 Things I did for Halloween (and what scared the pants off me)

Happy November 1st! Hope your Halloween was fun and rain free. I woke up this morning and its pouring rain and everything is gloomy outside. I hate depressing days like this. Luckily I have enough to keep me busy that it really won’t matter how wet it is outside.

In true November 1st fashion, I believe its about that time of the year when stores go into Christmas mode and put panic in the eyes of parents all over. Before popping in my Michael Buble Christmas CD, I’ll recap my Halloween for you all while drinking my PSL (pumpkin spice latte).

Pumpkin Cookies

pumpkin_cookiesMy mom made soft, warm pumpkin cookies! They have a thick, caramel glaze drizzled on top that hardens after a few hours. Here’s the recipe:

  • 2 cups shortening
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 8 tablespoons milk
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar

Directions:

1. Cream shortening, white sugar, and pumpkin. Add eggs and mix well. Sift together the baking soda, ground cinnamon, salt, and flour. Add to pumpkin mixture and mix well.

2. Drop from spoon to cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

3. To make frosting: Cook butter, milk, and brown sugar until dissolved. Cool and add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla. SPread over warm cookies.

These cookies are my favorite Pinterest find to date. They are so tasty!

cat_shaped_cakeMom also got a cake from the local bakery for us to dig into to. The inside was chocolate cake with a chocolate mousse filling. The outside was a hard chocolate shell with whipped icing detailing the kitty’s face. It was so rich! I could only eat a small slice. For almost every holiday my mom gets a cake or cupcakes to celebrate. My grandma did the same thing when my mom was a kid. Keeping these traditions alive is an important part of life.

Last but not least, my sister had her best friend sleep over. We ended up watching a ghost hunters type show. It scared the pants off of us. The hunters went to ancient haunted castles in Ireland. Several of these castles had druid and pagan rituals performed in them. The ghost hunters were trying to communicate with any evil spirits that still lurked in the castle. Needless to say they made contact and it scared the living tar out of them. One even claimed that something with sharp nails grabbed his ear! The man was actually crying. Upon entering a new castle another ghost hunter asked a spirit what touched the other man in the first castle. An audible voice said “Satan.” At that point my sister, her friend and I screamed and the ghost hunter proceeded to cry and then throw up. Freaky stuff! Enjoy the photo of us and be sure to tell me how your Halloween was!

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A Gala Event!

A Gala Event
I’ve been to a few gala events in my short adult life and every event somebody tops the best dressed list. The next time I attend one of these glamorous events I will be wearing a stunning outfit like this. It reminds me of the dress JLo wore in Maid in Manhattan minus the Harry Winston Wreath necklace.
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