Thursday, June 30

Feature on Under the Table and Dreaming!

Hello Everyone! I have exciting news to share! Today I'll be over at Stephanie Lynn's website Under the Table and Dreaming sharing a fun and quick centerpiece idea for the July 4th holidays! What an honor to be asked by Stephanie Lynn to be a part of her Celebration Inspiration Week! I was thrilled at the opportunity to contribute on one of my favorite websites, in fact, Under the Table and Dreaming was one of the first websites that I came across in Blogland that made me say, "WOW!"

Stephanie Lynn is a crafter with a sophisticated soul. She amazes me with her style and creativity and somehow always seems to find the best of the best on the web to share with all of her readers. It is truly a special day for me, and I hope you will all join me there for a great centerpiece idea, a FREEBIE printables set to go with it, and some photos of a July 4th table I put together for the feature.

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While you're visiting Stephanie Lynn, be sure to hop over to yesterday's post on a GIVEAWAY I'm doing for a FREE Full party package and invitation set from my Etsy shop!!

It's getting close to weekend time -- I hope you are all making fabulous plans for the 4th!

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Hello Everyone! I have exciting news to share! Today I'll be over at Stephanie Lynn's website Under the Table and Dreaming sharing a fun and quick centerpiece idea for the July 4th holidays! What an honor to be asked by Stephanie Lynn to be a part of her Celebration Inspiration Week! I was thrilled at the opportunity to contribute on one of my favorite websites, in fact, Under the Table and Dreaming was one of the first websites that I came across in Blogland that made me say, "WOW!"

Stephanie Lynn is a crafter with a sophisticated soul. She amazes me with her style and creativity and somehow always seems to find the best of the best on the web to share with all of her readers. It is truly a special day for me, and I hope you will all join me there for a great centerpiece idea, a FREEBIE printables set to go with it, and some photos of a July 4th table I put together for the feature.

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It's getting close to weekend time! I hope you are all making fabulous plans for the 4th!

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Wednesday, June 29

Firecracker Cake - Yum!

I came across this amazing cake on Betty Crocker from Cooking with Sugar and thought this was a keeper! I don't think it would last very long at your July 4th bash though so you consider making two!

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Here's the Recipe....

1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® white cake mix
Water, vegetable oil and egg whites called for on cake mix box
Red food color
Blue food color
1 container (12 oz) Betty Crocker® Whipped fluffy white frosting


Step One:  Heat oven to 325°F. Generously grease 12-cup fluted tube cake pan. Make cake batter as directed on box, using water, oil and egg whites. Pour 1 cup of the batter into small bowl; stir in red food color until well mixed. Pour another cup of the batter into separate bowl; stir in blue food color until well mixed. 

Step Two: Pour red cake batter into bottom of pan. Carefully pour remaining white batter over red batter in pan. Carefully pour blue batter over white batter. (Blue batter does not need to cover white batter completely; it looks better if it just forms a ring in the center of the white batter.)

Step Three: Bake as directed on box or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool cake 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place cooling rack over cookie sheet. Turn pan upside down onto cooling rack. Cool cake completely, about 30 minutes.


Step Four: When cake is cool, divide frosting evenly into 3 microwavable bowls. Microwave 1 bowl of frosting uncovered on High a few seconds until smooth enough to drizzle over cake. With spoon, drizzle all of white frosting back and forth around cake in a striping pattern. Repeat microwaving second bowl of frosting until smooth. Stir in a few drops blue food color until well blended. Drizzle over cake, scattering frosting back and forth. Repeat with remaining bowl of frosting and red food color, making sure red, white and blue frostings can be seen on cake. Let cake stand at room temperature until frosting is set before serving.


Recipe/photo from Betty Crocker


Doesn't it look divine? And not too hard either. My kids are going to flip when I make this one!
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Tuesday, June 28

{New Contributor} Kristyn from 'Lil Luna

Hey there Shindig Peeps!

I am Kristyn over at Lil' Luna, and I'm happy to announce that I will be making a regular monthly appearance here on Shindig. How stinkin' FUN is that?!? I am so stoked because I love Amanda and EVERYTHING she does. The girl is amazing, and I love all the printables in her shop and all the FREEBIES she offers here on her site.



Just to let you know a little about myself...

I'm married to a VERY supportive husband who helps me with all my crazy craft endeavors.

I also have 3 kids under 3, and I LOVE them so much. They definitely keep me busy but they bring me so much joy! I also just moved into my first house and I cannot wait to start crafting and creating to make it a HOME. :)



Today I will be showing you how to make a

SUPER fun, BUT EASY Interchangeable Pennant BANNER.

Here is what you'll need...




INTERCHANGEABLE PENNANT BANNER



SUPPLIES:
-Scrapbook Paper
-Glue Stick
-Sewing Machine
-Magnets
-Chipboard Letters
-Ribbon/Tulle



DIRECTIONS:

1. Begin by cutting out triangles in the size that you would like for your banner. I made a pattern out of cardstock for a 6" and 7" triangle. I wanted to make 9 triangles because the largest word I thought I wanted to make was CELEBRATE, so 9 six inch triangles and 9 seven inch triangles. :)




2. Trace smaller triangles onto the patterned scrapbook paper you chose, and then larger triangles onto the plain cardstock paper.


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3. Glue triangles together and then sew a zig-zag stitch onto the triangles {this zig-zag stitch adds the perfect embellishment to the banner and makes it more durable!}





4. Hole punch triangles at the tops and string through tulle or ribbon.





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5. Hot glue magnets onto your chipboard letters. And then place a magnet on the backside of the triangles to SPELL out the word you want to use. Do this with the rest of the letters for more words you would like to make. You can then INTERCHANGE the letters to display different words.




 
6. Hang and ENJOY your fun and easy Interchangable Banner!



I hope you like this fun craft.


Be sure to come over and say hi over at Lil' Luna.


Thanks for letting me take over today, Amanda!


ENJOY!
________________________________________


Thank you, Kristyn! What a fabulous idea and tutorial! 

Be sure to visit Kristyn over at Lil' Luna and click her "like" button on Facebook, too. She's got so many neat projects and great tutorials - you sure don't want to miss out on any of the fun!

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Friday, June 24

July 4th Drink Ideas

Are you wanting to entertain this holiday but need some great ideas? A signature cocktail is a nice way to welcome your guests to the party. After all, hot summer weather pairs perfectly with cool, frosty drinks, don't you think?

Start your July 4th festivities off with a bang with these festive red, white and blue drink recipes.


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My favorite is this strawberry daiquiri from MaisonBisson using fresh, frozen strawberries and garnishing with a little whipped cream and fresh blueberries. I wouldn't have a problem at all with 100 degree heat with this little drink in my hand.





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And isn't this cranberry juice and tequila cocktail pretty from Guy Fieri of the Food Network?



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The Patriotic Margarita from Coastal Living incorporates strawberry puree, Hypnotiq, pineapple juice and dark rum and would surely be a crowd pleaser.



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A red, white and blue martini from Barn One Drinks using Hypnotiq, grenadine and citrus vodka would have your guests saying, "Wow!"




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This Patriotic Pour from Bite Blog uses watermelon schnapps, blue curacao and finishes it off with a jalapeno firework kick. Don't those layered drinks look amazing?





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How about using red and blue ice cubes for a festive touch from My Frugal Lifestyle. No need for elaborate recipes.... just freeze some red and blue kool aid in ice cube trays and your kids would think you're the coolest mom on the block!


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Thursday, June 23

{Guest Post} July 4th Tie-Dye Cupcakes

Hi there! I am Kate from And Everything Sweet, and I’m so excited to be doing another guest post for Amanda’s amazing blog! Love her and all her designs so I was truly humbled when she asked me if I’d like to do a 4th of July dessert to feature. OF COURSE!

I had no idea what I was going to do until one day when I was out and about shopping at my favorite store Michaels (I need a bumper sticker that says “I’d rather be at Michaels”. Do they make those??). Anyway, I came across this new Wilton mold (Dessert Dome Candy Mold) while my 2 year old daughter Olivia was trying to open a bag of candy melts with her teeth. I had no idea what I’d use it for (and didn’t have much time to brainstorm because Olivia was literally trying to bite her way through 4 bags of candy melts), but I bought it anyway…(along with the 4 bags of candy melts that had been slobbered all over by someone’s unruly child).

Later that night after my babies were in bed I started playing around with ideas and that’s where the Tie Dye Fourth of July Cupcake was born!

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It might look complicated, but its not! All you need is the mold (not the gross green kind…I mean the Wilton Candy Dome Mold), candy melts (blue, red and white), some cupcakes, icing and fondant (if you want a cherry on top).

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First step is to melt the candy melts, put them in a baggie (separate baggie for each color) and snip a corner to squeeze the candy out. Start off with red, then go to blue, then to white…squeezing the candy out while doing a zig zag, swirly patterns. Play around…different patterns produce different designs. You can’t mess it up. Its tie dye…its supposed to look crazy and messy!

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Do it all over again to build your chocolate so that its thick enough…

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Warning: If there are any small children around make sure you don’t take your eye off of them for a second. It’s a well known fact around my house that small children LOVE to dip their fingers in chocolate and they WILL take advantage if no one is looking!!!!





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Once you’ve finished pouring your chocolate (and removed all small fingers from your chocolate ) its time to attach the top of the mold on and refrigerate to allow the candy melts to harden.

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While I waited for the chocolate to harden I iced a few cupcakes. It doesn’t matter what they look like because you’re going to cover them up with the chocolate dome anyway. I just added the frosting for extra calories and deliciousness.


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Once the chocolate is set, CAREFULLY remove the candy dome from the mold (this is the only hard part of the entire process). I had a lot break, but after some practice (and trying my hardest to be carefully careful),  I got better and had less breakage.

You end up with something like this…

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Embellish with some frosting and top off w/ a fondant cherry and you’re done.
TIE DYE FOURTH OF JULY Cupcakes!


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Thank you Kate!!
I just love these cupcakes - so unique but just about anyone can do it. And I can already tell these will be a hit with the kiddos because my five year on seeing the photos said, "Wow! That's a cupcake! I want one of those!"

Kate has such fabulous ideas. Just look at these amazingly creative golf ball pops she made recently.

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And what about her latest cake? Makes me want to have a pool party. The girl is the fondant queen!

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Be sure to visit Kate at And Everything Sweet -- you'll be glad you did!

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Wednesday, June 22

July 4th Ideas with Strawberries

What could be more fun than celebrating our great country with friends and family this July 4th? And with so many festive and fun ideas out there, you can entertain in style without breaking the bank or spending too much time in the kitchen.

One of the first things I do when planning a party is to begin with my color palette. And with the red, white and blue of the 4th of July, you can easily find just what you need in the produce department of the grocery store.... Strawberries!

Just look at some of these wonderful ideas:


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Strawberry cream cheese bites from Tip Junkie are quick to make and the perfect appetizer for a 4th of July celebration.



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Strawberry Lemonade from Cooking with my Kid looks like a fabulous thirst quencher for those hot, summer days.

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White chocolate dipped strawberries dressed up for the 4th would be a fun Independence Day activity for the kids from She Wood Time.



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Need a great drink idea? I love the idea of this Strawberry Granita from My Recipes using all fresh ingredients.



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Strawberry shortcake using a star-shaped cake is brilliant from The Devine Home.




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Red, white and blue parfait from BHG is just as easy to make as it is pretty.



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And if you need something quick, there's nothing much simpler than the idea of using strawberries and blueberries for the perfect cupcake topper from The Cupcake Blog. 

I'll be posting on many more July 4th ideas so check back for some wonderfully inspiring ideas for tablescapes and decorating, too.
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Monday, June 20

{Customer Feature} Go Kart Party - Part 3

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Remember this fabulous party table from last week using the new Shindig Parties' Go Kart Printables?



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This was the hard work and and creativity of Charlene, one of my fabulous customers with an eye for great design and a knack for throwing one unbelievable party. I featured two days of Charlene's Go Kart party for her son, Christian, last week in Part 1 and Part 2 and today I'm going to show off some more of Charlene's fantastic photos and ideas.



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After eating some sweets from that amazing dessert table, the kids sat down for a door hanging craft. Charlene copied some of the Go Kart printable designs and made some other "Keep Out!" sayings and printed them all onto sticker paper for the kids to cut out and decorate their door hangers.


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Charlene was sure to keep the kids busy with lots of fun activities like this indoor cart race. 
I wish I had a playroom like this in my house!

And then they headed outside for some punching balloon fun.



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And next they were off to a local go kart racing place where the kids got to race in their very own go karts. How much fun is that!

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Looks like Christian was a happy boy, and with an amazing mom like Charlene, how could he not be. Thank you, Charlene, for all of your wonderful photos and fantastic party ideas. I can't wait to see what you come up with for your next party!

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