Sunday Linky Party #1

Suburbsmama



Welcome to my first ever linky party!

I am a big fan of linky parties and love attending them. I find so many amazing blogs to follow through them and so much inspiration.  I figured why not host one myself.

Please link your crafts, DIYs and recipes, home tours.  Please no giveaways or shops.

Please stay a while and visit a few links and leave some nice comments.


By linking below, you give me the right to feature your photo and link back to your post.


Thanks you so much for coming (feel free to grab my button)

(if you have trouble linking up, click try here under trouble linking up)











The Living Room Updated

There have been some changes in the living room. 

It all started with the coffee table. 
I was never a fan of the old ottoman coffee table and it was always my intention to reupholster it for get something new.
 Well, I finally did something about it. I sold the ottoman, two old lamps, baby bedding set (craigslist) and finally made enough money for the coffee table I have been drooling for months now. 

You can see the before living room here

After I got the coffee table, I decided that I needed more color in the room since spring and summer months are coming up. I went to the fabric store and bought some pretty colorful patterns and made a whole bunch of new pillow covers. See my tutorial on how to make super easy pillow covers here

Here is what my living room looks like now. 




Its hard to believe that this is how it used to look like:




Brie and Raspberry Bites


I saw these on pinterest and knew that I had to make these. I printed the recipe right away (not just pinned it) that is a lot to say since I pin every day. 

These are super easy and are as equally delicious. 


Ingredients:
2 sheets puff pastry, thawed
Raspberry jam
Frozen raspberries
Wedge brie cheese, cut into 32 bite-size squares
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Slice each sheet of pastry into 16 squares.
Start by slicing into four equal quarters, then slice each of those into four squares.
In the center of each square, place 1 piece of brie, 1 raspberry and a dallop of jam.


New social media buttons (finally)



I got new social media buttons! Yipee. 

They are so cute and they were free!




Carrie from Carrieloves  has created them and is sharing all of these buttons:

Go here to download the buttons.





Look at the the pretty colors you can choose!



I used this post to help me figure out how to apply the buttons to my blog, which was very helpful. 


Now go get your buttons. 




Caramelized Butternut Squash


This caramelized squash is unbelievably good! We have a vegetables with all of our dinners, and this one is always a treat. 


1 medium butternut squash (2 pounds)
6 TB unsalted butter (melted)
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp of pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 F


Cut the ends of each butternut squash and discard. Remove seeds and peel and cut into cubes.
(or buy cubed and ready butternut squash)

Empties With Reviews (Used Up Products)

My emtpies box is filled up to the brim so it is time to review and recycle. 


Lets start out with hair products:


Did I like it: YES. Strong hold, doesn't leave hair sticky, I can brush it at the end of the day and the hairspray is gone. The only thing I didn't like is the smell and the price. But this can lasted me a good 3 months, so it is worth it. 
Will I repurchase? Yes, already repurchased, this time I bought the unscented version. It is cheaper at Target ($12.99, instead of the $14.99 everywhere else)

Did I like it: Yes, this is my 3rd can. It isn't volumizing, I just use it as a light hold finishing hairspray. 
Will I repurchase? I buy mine at walmart ($4.74), so next time I go to walmart, I will pick up another can.

Carols Daughter Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner
Did I like it: YES. I use this once a week to remove all buildup in my hair. It cleans my scalp very well and leaves a tingly clean feeling. The conditioner makes my hair super silky and smooth.
Will I repurchase? Yes, I already did. 


Number 4 Clarifying Shampoo (birchbox sample)
Did I like it: Yes. It has a pleasant smell and really cleans the scalp well.
Will I repurchase? No. it is $32, which is more then I would like to spend on a clarifying shampoo, especially since I like the Carol's daughter clarifying shampoo much better and it is half the price. 

Did I like it: YES. This stuff is amazing. I use it every friday. This lasted me a good 3 months, so it is well worth the money. After I use this, I can't help myself from smelling my hair over and over. 
It gives me smooth, shiny, frizz free hair ( like I just came home from the salon)
Will I repurchase? Yes. 


Lets move on to skincare:


Easy Envelope Pillows (tutorial)



I decided to change it up again in the living room by bringing in some color for the upcoming spring and summer months, and the most inexpensive way to do this is to add some flowers and new colorful pillows. 

Throw pillows cost a lot. Even at Home Goods or Marshall's you will pay at least $20 for a pillow. It's ridiculous!

I went to The fabric store and paid $40 for fabric which was enough for 10 pillows! You can't beat that!

This is the easiest thing you can sew. Even if you don't know how to sew, you can still make this, there are no zippers involved and all you need to do is sew straight lines. 

1 yard is enough for one 20 inch pillow.  Keep that in mind when buying your fabric. 

I prefer down pillows, because I like how "chopped" pillows look. 
But I have non down throw pillows to. After I recovered all of my old pillows, I went and bought down throw pillows at IKEA. The are only $6.99 each, Which is the cheapest I found in town:



There are two different ways I make pillows. One way is by cutting out one piece of fabric and the other is by cutting out 3 parts.


Here is the first way.

Use your old pillow case as a guide. You need to cut a piece of fabric that is 1/2 inch wider on each side and can overlap by 6 inches:


See, when I fold it over the pillow case, it overlaps by 6 inches:


Fold and iron the two ends:


Sew both of the ends:


Lay the fabric on a flat surface with the right side up. 
Bring one end up to the middle:


Then bring the other side towards the middle:


Use your old pillow case as a guide. Put it onto to make sure it is the same size.



Sew two of the edges.

After you have sewn the 2 seams, you need to finish the edges. 
You can serge them, zig zag stitch or use pinking shears like I do:






After this step you are done!

Put your pillow in and admire your work:





 The next way to make the pillow is for when you don't have enough fabric to go all the way around the pillow and you need to cut out pieces. 

1 yard of fabric was not quite big enough to go around the 20 inch IKEA pillow. 


March 2013 Birchbox


I always get so excited when I get my birchbox in the mail. 

Let me tell you what birch box is, just in case you are not familiar with it.
It's a monthly subscription service which is $10.00 a month where you get sent 5-6 high-end samples each month. First you take a little survey so they can find out more about your skin, make up likes and dislikes so they know what to send you.

You know how I love trying out new products? Well, with the birch box, I can try high end products without having to buy full size products. If I love the product, then I can go buy it :)

If you are interested in checking it out, go to Birch Box



Lets get started:

Macadamia Natural Oil Full size: $39.05
What Birchbox says: Quicker then a trip to hawaii, this feather weight hair treatment woos us with a combination of lush macadamia nut and argan oils. 
What I say: I used to be scared of oils for my hair (since I get oily) however with the right oils and using the correct amount I have become a believer. I can see what the hype is all about. I use it right after I finish drying my hair. I take a drop and rub it into my palms and them apply it to my hair (avoiding my roots) it gets rid of any frizz and it is also healing for the ends. 

What Birchbox says: made with macadamia and tea tree oils, this rich treatment strengthens strands from the inside while also adding major gloss.
What I say: I tried this hair mask and liked it, however I am not convinced to buy it. I prefer the carols daughter monoi deep repair mask


What Birchbox says: Opposites attract in this gentle but seriously effective remover.
What I say: It is nice, however I love my bioderma more, I can use that on my eyes and face to remove all makeup. 

What Birchbox says: Intense long lasting color that is smudge proof.
What I say: This is a long lasting lipstick, the color is very bright and I don't fully apply it, I just apply a light wash and it still lasts a few hours. glad to see they have more neutral colors. 

What birchbox says: Layers of lotus flowers, peach and lychee, its free of parabens, sulfates and synthetics.
What I say: This stuff smells so good!! the sample has a little roller ball and is easy to apply. I can see myself buying the full size bottle. 

Beauty extra:

This was a nice extra (especially since my son snapped my old one in half) I love the pattern on it


Thanks so much for visiting and I hope you have a wonderful day



Master Bedroom Makeover



Ah, the master bedroom. It's supposed to be the sanctuary of the house, the place you retreat to and get rest at the end of the day. But so many people neglect this room. We were one of those people. We didn't do anything because, well, I knew I had to scrap it all. I had to start from scratch. I hated it all. 
It seemed like a huge and expensive project and I didn't even want to start it. When we had guests, I just made sure the door was shut to my room. Not a bad solution, right? 


But finally, the time had come. We finished out master bathroom remodel and the bedroom makeover began. We "moved" into the guest room and I slowly started working on things: painting walls, selling old bed and mattress, refinishing furniture, shopping for furniture, mattress, bedding, lighting, accessories. 

Little by little it started to come together. I would be lying if I told you that it is complete, there are still things I want to get. But it has been 8 months since I started working on the room. Yes 8! If I had the money, I would have finished it all in a month. But like most people, we had to buy a few things at a time. 


Paint color is is cool elegance by valspar



I found the bed I wanted at Z gallerie and everything just started coming together from there. 


Here is the before:


Cream Horns



This is the most easiest dessert you  can make.  My mom used to make it and now I make them for my family to. 

I don't even know if I should show you, becuase I am sure other people make these the "correct" way with making your own cream and dough. But I take the easy way out (atleast in this recipe) And they still turn out delicious!

CLICK HERE TO PRINT

Only 3 ingredients: puff pastry, cool whip and powdered sugar.


So here it is:

You need cream horn molds. (I bought mine at Bed bath and Beyond, but I could not find them online) They were around $3.99 for 6.

Spray your molds with oil:

 

DIY Milk Glass (vase makeover)

 I have never liked gold finishes before. But, lately it has been really growing on me. 
Gold jewelry, gold hardware, gold home decor. Please tell me I am not the only one.

 I wanted to bring in some gold into my bedroom. I had this vase I bought awhile back at a craft store, it was very cheap. 

I didn't like how you can see the stems of the plant, so I decided to paint it. 

However, I didn't just want to spray paint it. I wanted to the vase to have a milk glass look and have gold detail. Here is the before and after. 




It is a super easy and simple project. It you have some paint laying around, you can do this to. Either use an old vase, or pick some different vases at the thrift store and paint them all the same and group them together. 

Here is some inspiration I found online:







Ok, let me show you how I did this. 

I taped of the edge of the vase to make sure I didn't get any paint on it then I poured some white paint into the vase:



Swirl the paint. Add more paint if needed:


Make sure you covered the whole vase with paint:


Next, flip your vase over for the rest of the paint to drip out. 

(I made a little draining rack for it out of skewers)

I taped off the rest of the vase so I wouldn't get any spray paint on it. 



Next I sprayed the bottom of the vase with some gold spray paint I had laying around in the garage:


I didn't like this gold finish so I distressed it a bit with some metallic paints from Martha Stewart:



Take off the tape and clean of the edges:



Next let it dry for a few days before you put anything inside so you don't scratch the paint. 

hmm... Now I am thinking I should tape of the vase and create gold stripes... what do you think?





Thank you so much for visiting and I hope you all have a fabulous day!