Simple Macrame Bracelet DIY

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (10)For many of us, it would be very easy to complain about this long, cold winter that seems to be never ending. But, if you try to find the good, you might say one of the advantages to being stuck inside is having the opportunity to work on projects. Of course we have choices… organizing random things and cleaning out closets or dabbling in a little DIY. This week I chose DIY.

The other day I was in the mood to play around with some of my jewelry supplies. I wanted to do something simple that didn’t take a lot of time so I decided to whip up a few bracelets, macrame style. And when I say, whip up, I mean it. Macrame is a simple project that anyone can do, including kids! Perfect for a rainy, or in my case, snowy day!

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (9)I love unique jewelry, especially bracelets that can be stacked together. This project is a very inexpensive way to add to your arm party! I don’t really have a specific method for this because I just sat down and started playing but I’ll give you a very simple overview of what I did.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIYI started with just a few supplies: skinny waxed cotton cord, small crystal beads and some crystal buttons for the toggle clasp.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (1)I threaded 4 very long strands of cord (more than double the length of the actual bracelet I was making) through the back of the button. The type of button I chose had a wire loop on the back which made threading easy. Standard buttons won’t work.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (2)I wanted to use small beads that could not be strung onto this cord so I added a piece of jewelry wire to the button. To keep it simple use beads that are large enough to thread onto the cord.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (3)

I tied a knot at the end of the cord right under the button. Instead of cutting the excess cord, I taped it to a work surface to make knotting and beading easier.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (4)I began to tie square macrame knots alternately with the outside strands of cord. The middle strands stay stationary through the entire process.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (5)

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (6)After several knots were tied I added a bead. I tied the next knot right around the bead. If you are not using jewelry wire you will thread your beads onto the middle strands of cord.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (7)I didn’t count knots or beads so there is no rhyme or reason to these particular bracelets. You can always make patterns and count knots if you prefer a more uniform look. I was going for a less structured piece.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (8)Once the bracelet was the length I wanted, I created a loop at the end of the cord that would fit over the button to close the bracelet.

Woven Beaded Bracelet DIY (11)

That’s it! It really is easy but if you find these steps hard to follow and you need more help, you can find plenty of tutorials on Macrame on Pinterest or the internet! Try your own technique to make a more personalized piece. You really can’t go wrong!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Leslie xo

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine's DayToday is Valentine’s Day and it’s a special day for so many reasons. Sure it’s about flowers, candy and cards and we all look forward to sharing those things with the people we love but it’s also a day to feel grateful and pay it forward. Do something you might not usually do. There are so many things to be happy about and so many little ways to show people you care.  Whether it’s your family, a friend or even better,  a stranger you’ve never met. Take the time to do something special. Put a smile on someone’s face. Do someone a favor. It will make the day that much better! My little Valentine to you is a simple recipe for sugar cookies that I have actually shared before. It’s not just a recipe, it’s a tradition. I have been making these cookies for special holidays since my kids were tiny. My mother made them for me and my sisters. It’s the tradition that’s special, not the recipe (although it’s a really good one!). Happy Friday! Happy Valentine’s Day! Have a fabulous weekend!

Valentine’s Day Sugar Cookie Recipe

Leslie xo

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup via Leslie ReeseIf you have been following me here for a while (or on social media) you’ve probably noticed a couple of things about me. First of all, I am a coffee lover (addict), and second, I have one heck of a sweet tooth. I make no apologies for either one. I believe in that whole “everything in moderation” thing. It’s what keeps me from getting out of control. So as much as I occasionally indulge in the things I love, I do what I can to balance it all and make better choices whenever possible. One of the changes I recently made was to my morning coffee routine. I love a good  latte in the morning and a flavored one is even better. I decided that using an artificial sweetener in my cup every morning might not be a good thing so I created my own vanilla flavored coffee syrup. It still has sugar in it but it’s a healthier version which is definitely a better option. It’s a simple 3 ingredient recipe that can be used in many different ways. I’m keeping mine by the coffee!

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup RecipeThe first thing I did was trade regular processed sugar for Zulka Morena Pure Cane Sugar. Zulka is a NON-GMO product. It’s never refined and has a great flavor.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (2)I used equal parts  Zulka and water to make a simple syrup (this batch was 3 cups of each). I cooked it over medium/high heat for about 10-15 minutes until it was well blended and a little syrupy.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (1)While the syrup was heating I sliced 2 vanilla beans lengthwise and scraped out the inside.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (3)I removed the syrup from the heat and added the scraped vanilla bean and pods. I stirred it well and let it cool.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe 2Once the syrup was cool I poured the entire contents, beans included, into a bottle.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (6)I added a pump that I bought in a kitchen store.

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (7)The flavor is so rich you really don’t need much to make a great latte!

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup Recipe (8)Heaven!

Some days I really think I would really benefit from a complete sugar detox (who knows, you may read about that soon!) but for now I am all about making small changes while still enjoying some of the little things that make me happy. And vanilla lattes make me happy! What are some of the “little things” that make you happy?

Have a wonderful weekend!

Leslie xo

Read More about Zulka Morena Sugar

Find my Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies and other great recipes on Zulka.com

Homemade Boursin Cheese Recipe

Homemade Boursin Cheese (3)

Last summer I became a huge fan of Boursin cheese. My rock star cousin (who is the appetizer queen) made a delicious spread for one of our Happy Hour parties at the beach and I’ve been hooked ever since. I’m not sure I really even knew what Boursin was. I never paid attention, but when it was drizzled with balsamic glaze and scooped up with pretzel chips, it was heaven. My new favorite appetizer! One problem, Boursin is not the cheapest cheese in the case (say that three times!). I was buying it in miniature blocks at the grocery store until I found it at Costco but it was still expensive. Then one day my girlfriend, rather nonchalantly while I was preparing the store bought version, said “You know you can make your own Boursin don’t you? It’s less expensive too”. That was news to me! Where had I been? I have been making my own ever since! Here’s how  I do it…

Homemade Boursin CheeseBoursin is basically a mixture of butter, cream cheese and herbs. It’s creamy, spreadable, and highly addictive (trust me). You can make it any flavor by using your favorite herbs. This recipe has quite a variety in it but you can keep it as simple as garlic and basil if you prefer.

Homemade Boursin Cheese (1)Toss all ingredients into a food processor, give it a quick spin and it’s done! Ridiculously easy to make!

Homemade Boursin Cheese (2)The texture of the finished Boursin will be soft. Just place it into a bowl or container, cover and refrigerate until firm.

Boursin Cheese with Balsamic GlazeMy favorite way to serve Boursin Cheese is with a drizzle of Balsamic Glaze and Pretzel Chips (Thanks Rita!). It tastes like something that took a lot of effort but it’s probably the easiest appetizer you’ll ever make! Perfect for Super Bowl Sunday!

Enjoy!

Leslie xo

Homemade Boursin Cheese Recipe
 
Author:
Serves: makes 3 cups
Ingredients
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 8 ounces butter, room temperature
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill weed, crumbled
  • ½ teaspoon dried marjoram
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried chives
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
Method
  1. Add cheeses and butter to food processor or mixing bowl.
  2. Add garlic and spices.
  3. Process or mix all ingredients until well blended.
  4. Place cheese in container, cover and store in refrigerator.
Notes
Serving Suggestion : Scoop Boursin into a serving dish and drizzle with balsamic glaze.Serve with pretzel chips.

*I used dry herbs because I had them all on hand. If you prefer fresh herbs feel free to use them!

Favorite Things

Favorite Things FaceAbout Face

This winter has been brutal in my neck of the woods! And as much as I love all four of the wonderful seasons we get to experience in Central PA, I am ready to kiss this one goodbye! The cold temps are wreaking havoc on my skin and when you add that to the fact that I’m not getting any younger, the need for a good skin care routine is a must. Don’t get me wrong, I am completely willing to accept the aging process and plan to do so gracefully but hey girls, why not preserve what we’ve got? I think it’s important to be proactive and using products that work helps! I thought I would share some of my latest skin care favorites with you today. Happy Friday!

Mia_White_Front_1000x1000Clarisonic Mia ~ Morning  and/or Night

This little gem paired with your favorite cleanser is a great way to start and end your day. It does a great job at gently but thoroughly cleaning your skin. I’ve had mine for about a year and I love it!

SCS031_lSkinCeuticals Phloretin CF Gel ~ Morning

Recommended by my Dermatologist, this power packed Vitamin C Gel delivers a healthy dose of antioxidants that do a nice job of repairing and protecting my skin. LOVE it!

Kiehls EyeKiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado ~ Morning & Night

This awesome eye cream was in the Swag Bags at the Nordstrom Beauty Trend Show last April and I have been using mine ever since. It’s lightweight but does a great job of hydrating. I’m hooked!

Kiehls FaceKiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream ~ Morning & Night

Another Swag Bag treat that just might be my favorite right now. While I usually prefer a lighter moisturizer, this intense cream is perfect for keeping skin hydrated in these bitter cold temps. It’s like a huge drink of water for your face!

z0ao0ran_201305152236088183 Replenix Retinol Smoothing Serum 10x ~ Night

The older I get the more I appreciate the word Retinol! You know the whole fine line thing… (nothing fine about lines on your face!) And although I am not a fan of most Retinol products because they can irritate my skin, I do love this one! A little goes a long way when I add it to my moisturizer making it last twice as long. Bonus!

Agave Nectar

Farmhouse Fresh ~ Agave Nectar Body Oil

Taking care of your skin doesn’t stop with your face. I decided to try a sample of this body oil last fall when I was wearing a cocktail dress and heels. I used it on my legs and I LOVED it! It wasn’t greasy and sticky like some oils can be. It absorbed really well and gave my skin a nice subtle glow (a perfect fix for that winter white look). I’ve been loving it ever since!

Take control this winter and make your skin a priority! Do at least one little thing for yourself each day and notice the difference it makes! You’re worth it! Have a wonderful weekend!

Leslie xo

Life is Good

Elizabeth's Wedding  copy (640x424)I know, your jaw is on the floor and you’re wondering what is going on! A blog post? Really? Yes, really! What has it been? Three, almost four months? I feel like I’ve been on another planet and I’ve missed you! And I’ve missed my blog like crazy! I wanted to hug it when I signed on to write this post (not kidding)! The good news is I have been busy doing something I really love! Here’s the story…

20130706-DTS_7324 (640x426)

Last year I decided to start listening to my inner self and I began to follow my true passions in life.  Since then, things haven’t been the same. Along with some other amazing changes, I started working full time at Cork Factory Hotel in Lancaster, PA as a Wedding Sales Consultant. (You may remember my daughter Elizabeth’s wedding was there.) The place, the people and the job are all awesome and I love it! If you ask me how I got there, I will tell you it was fate. It’s been an amazing few months and a perfect fit! The bad news is, my new schedule has not given me time to blog the way I used to. And those of you who work full time know days off are precious. The race to tackle the to-do list begins the minute you leave the office. So obviously the blog went to the bottom of the priority list.

Well last week, for some reason, I decided to bump the blog up a notch on the list and get back to it. Call it perfect timing, prioritizing, whatever it was, I decided to sit down and write. I’m looking forward to blogging again whenever I can, about whatever I’m in the mood to share. No schedule, no plan (if you know me, that’s not easy!)

So to give you an idea of what I’ve been up to, I decided to share a few of my favorite photos that I’ve captured at Cork Factory Hotel. I think you’ll see why I love it there!

Cork Factory Favorite ShotsThis is a wedding cake in progress behind the scenes at The Baker’s Table, our on-site bakery. It’s fun to see all of the beautifully decorated cakes that come out of this bakery. The talent is extraordinary.

Cork Factory Favorite Shots (1)Another day, another gorgeous wedding cake from The Baker’s Table.

Cork Factory Favorite Shots (2)Each event is so very different and it’s fun to see how people celebrate special occasions. This is a simple candlelight wedding ceremony in one of the newest event spaces at Urban Place, The Warehouse.

Cork Factory Favorite Shots (3)Meeting so many wonderful people in the wedding and event industry is definitely one of my favorite things about this job. I had the opportunity to sit down with Janell Berte of Posh Bridal recently to interview her for a Cork Factory Hotel blog post. These wedding dresses are just a few of the many stunning designs in her upscale shop.

Cork Factory Favorite Shots (4)Another “perk” to the job is having so many amazing coffee shops and restaurants to visit while I’m in the area. I have a few favorites but one of the best cups of tea I have had was at a little place called Cafe Di Vetro. You know how I feel about detail and presentation and this was one of the best!

So there you have it! You are officially updated and I am happy you are here. I’ll look forward to staying in touch and keeping you posted! You can look forward to some more frequent posts and a possible new twist to the blog!

Have a wonderful week!

Leslie xo

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti via Leslie ReeseWelcome to October! Didn’t I just say I couldn’t believe summer was over? Well now we’ve propelled into October, fall is in full swing and I’m wondering where September went! It’s all good though. I don’t know about you but I am ready for cooler weather, a change in wardrobe and even a change in the menu when it comes to cooking and baking. It’s time to bring out the flavors of fall. I have been in a baking mood lately and last week I spent a day in kitchen baking all kinds of fun things. One of my favorites was this Pumpkin Pie Biscotti that I found over on My Baking Addiction. From the pumpkin pie spice to the toasted nut’s, it’s got a wonderful blend of flavors that are perfect for fall. I love biscotti because it can be enjoyed any time of day with a cup of coffee or tea. So if you’re in the mood for some fall baking give this recipe a try, you’ll be glad you did!

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti (1) (640x426)You don’t have to use a stand alone mixer for this recipe but the dough is firm and I found it much easier to use my Kitchen Aid once I was mixing the wet and dry ingredients together. Just make sure you don’t over mix the dough if you use one.

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti (2) (640x426)When you add toasted nuts to the dough it takes the flavor to a whole new level. I love pecans but had a mixture of walnuts and pecans in my pantry so I used them both.

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti (3) (640x426)Once you knead the nuts into the dough you will form two separate logs that are flat on top, not rounded.

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti (4) (640x426)Biscotti means “twice baked” so after you bake the biscotti once, you will slice the logs into individual pieces and place them back in the oven for a second round of baking.

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti (5) (640x426)After a second round of baking the inside of the biscotti will be soft but the outside will be nice and crunchy. If you prefer a harder biscotti you can bake them a little longer.

Biscotti is one of my favorite cookies! If they are a favorite of yours you might want to try this recipe for Pine Nut-Orange Biscotti from an earlier post. They are delicious too!

Enjoy!

Leslie xo

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 3½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups firmly packed brown sugar (I used dark)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1¼ cup nuts, chopped nuts ( I used pecans and walnuts)
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice in a large mixing bowl, stir well. In another bowl combine pumpkin, eggs and vanilla stirring well with a wire whisk.
  3. Slowly add pumpkin mixture to dry ingredients, stirring until dry ingredients are moistened (mixture will be crumbly at first).
  4. Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add nuts. Cook, stirring constantly until nuts are browned. Remove from heat and cool completely.
  5. Knead cooled nuts into dough. Place dough on lightly floured surface and divide into two equal portions.
  6. Lightly flour hands and shape each portion of dough into a 2" X 10" log. Place logs several inches apart on a baking sheet. Bake for 24 minutes. Cool logs 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.
  7. After the logs are cooled, carefully move them to a cutting board and cut diagonally into ½" thick pieces using a serrated knife. The outside of the log will be hard but the inside will still be moist.
  8. Place the biscotti, cut side up, back on the baking sheet and bake for 8 more minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and flip the biscotti over. Bake another 7 minutes.
  9. Place biscotti on wire racks to cool keeping them separated as they cool so they don't stick together.
  10. *Optional step - dip into or drizzle with melted white chocolate
  11. Biscotti will keep in an airtight container for several weeks.

Paper Flower Wall DIY

Paper Flower Wall via Leslie ReeseI am one of those people who is always looking forward to the next party or celebration. I just love making the most out of any holiday or event.  I absolutely loved helping two of my daughters plan their weddings and I honestly can’t wait to do it again someday for the next one! I live for this stuff! What’s fun is that each wedding is as unique as the people getting married. This past July Elizabeth and Jon got married at the Cork Factory Hotel in Lancaster, PA. Elizabeth had a vision and knew exactly what she wanted. In case you missed the last post, you can find a little recap here. It was truly a beautiful day. One of our favorite things from that day was the paper flower wall that stood as a back drop during the ceremony and reception. We made it ourselves. It was a labor of love and we were thrilled with the result. We thought it would be fun to share the progress of such a big project with you.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (15) (640x489)It all started when we had the wonderful opportunity to attend the Martha Stewart Bridal Market Party in New York City last October. It was a real Who’s Who in the event planning world. It was a fantastic night and as you can imagine there were amazing things to see and do. One of the things that caught our eye was the photo booth. The wall behind it was covered with white flowers. It was beautiful.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (14) (640x426)At the time, Elizabeth was engaged and the minute she saw the wall she said ” I want this at my wedding!” So naturally, since I’m her mom and a person who loves a creative challenge, my answer to her was ” Then you shall have it!” We stood in awe of the wall taking pictures and examining the flowers. The whole thing was made from paper. It was so cool. No big deal…right? Well, sort of…

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (11) (640x426)Soon after we returned from New York City we began the process of making this wall happen. We had 9 months, which was plenty of time, but we couldn’t find a how-to anywhere. Not on Martha Stewart’s website and not even on Pinterest! So we decided to just figure it out. We started by making tons of paper flowers. We made patterns and cut them out of everything from single sheets of copy paper to rolls of craft paper. The varied weights in paper gave the flowers a few different looks.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (12) (640x507)Elizabeth made a job out of designing and cutting paper flowers.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (13) (640x426)We had flowers everywhere so we carefully attached them to a bare wall in our basement to keep them from getting wrinkled or torn.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (4) (640x480)While we were creating the flowers, Jon and his dad constructed a 12′ high by 8′ wide wall that would wrap around the fireplace in the ballroom at the Cork Factory. We tested the fit before the big day to make sure it worked. The Cork Factory staff was fantastic to work with and were happy to accommodate us with this project. We just love them!

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (6) (480x640)Once the wall was constructed we attached the flowers to it. We used a combination of glue and staples.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (5) (529x640)In order to make it portable Jon and his dad used five separate boards to create the wall. Three across the front and one on each side. They would all be attached together at the venue.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (7) (480x640)Once most of the flowers were attached we stood each section of the wall up to see how it looked (it helped that Jon’s dad’s basement had high ceilings!). We added more flowers to completely fill the wall.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (8) (501x640)The wall was transported to the venue the day of the wedding in a covered truck. A HUGE thank you to Jon’s dad Glenn for making that happen!

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (640x426)When the wall was set up in the ballroom we touched it up with a few more flowers and a little bit of glue. We lined the base of the wall with glass vessels filled with water and floating candles. It softened the look and gave the wall a romantic glow.

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (1) (640x426)Mission accomplished!

Flower Wall DIY via Leslie Reese (3)This paper flower wall was truly a labor of love. Elizabeth had a vision and with some hard work and  the collaboration of some amazing people it became a reality. And it was perfect!

Have a beautiful day!

Leslie xo

Hello September

Elizabeth and Jon  Wedding July 6 2013Welcome to September! I can’t believe July and August are over. How did that happen? It seems like just yesterday I was saying “I’ll be back soon” and all of a sudden we fast forward to September and the last few months are memories. I hope you had a wonderful summer! Mine was filled with celebrations, new beginnings, adventures and time spent with family and friends. It flew by quickly! When that happens we sometimes find ourselves hanging onto the season, not wanting to let go of the here and now. Other times we feel ready for a change. It’s why those back to school commercials resonate with mothers everywhere! Either way, it’s time for transition and ready or not, here it comes. I love this time of year so I will be embracing the new season and all that it brings but before I jump into fall recipes and cool weather projects, I want to share one of my favorite summer memories with you.

My daughter Elizabeth was married to the love of her life, Jon, in July. It was a magical day and I can honestly say I have never seen her happier. The entire process leading up to that day was wonderful. It was a fantastic collaboration of amazing people and it was one of the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had. I loved every minute of planning this special day with Elizabeth. We worked hard, laughed a lot and even shed a few tears. It was truly the highlight of our summer.

Cork Factory Hotel Wedding ~ Elizabeth and Jon The wedding was held at the Cork Factory Hotel in Lancaster, PA. The wood ceilings and brick walls of this 19th Century building once housed the historic Armstrong Cork and Kerr Glass companies. This well preserved structure was a perfect setting for Elizabeth and Jon’s special day. The awesome photos in this post are the work of New Chapters Photography, in Harrisburg, PA.

Handmade Paper Flower Wall via Leslie ReeseElizabeth had a vision for a white flower wall that would be the backdrop for her wedding ceremony. After weeks of cutting and gluing, we covered the entire 8′ X 12′ structure with handmade paper flowers that we designed ourselves. We were thrilled with the end result. I will be sharing the experience from start to finish in an upcoming post.

Candles and Paper Flowers via Leslie ReeseFloating candles in a variety of glass vessels lined the bottom of the flower wall giving it a soft romantic glow.

Wedding Programs via Leslie ReeseHandmade programs tied with coral ribbon were hanging from chiavari chairs for each guest.

Simple Garden Flowers via Leslie Reese #weddingsElizabeth wanted simple but elegant hand tied bouquets of garden flowers. Blooms by Vickrey in Camp Hill, PA did a fantastic job with the entire wedding. Owner Mark Vickrey was on site all day making sure everything went as planned. Not only did that give us peace of mind, Mark was a blast to work with. He is one of our favorite vendors.

Handmade Wedding Headpiece via Leslie ReeseElizabeth’s headpiece was beautifully unique and a perfect compliment to her dress. When she decided to wear a headband I thought I would try to make one for her. I designed it to include a removable veil so she could wear the headband during the reception. It was so simple to make and was special for both of us.

Babies Breath Balls #weddings #flowersSimple elegance was the goal for this wedding. Elizabeth chose balls of babies breath, some of which were suspended over the tables, instead of traditional arrangements. Another job well done by Blooms by Vickrey.

Individual Miniature Wedding Cakes via Leslie ReeseIndividual miniature wedding cakes made by Kyrsten’s Sweet Designs were placed on the tables for each guest. Kyrsten is an extremely talented local baker and cake designer from Harrisburg, PA. I will be sharing more about her and her amazing work in an upcoming post.

Chocolate Covered Sugar Cookie Spoons #events #coffee #tea via Leslie ReeseA few of our favorite things from this special day were the ice cream bar, the homemade chocolate covered sugar cookie spoons on the coffee bar and the fact that the guests loved taking their cakes home in individual boxes. We even included a fork just in case they wanted to dig in before they got home!

It was a wonderful day and a memory that will last a lifetime! What is your favorite summer memory? Do you have one or are there many that you will tuck away? It feels good to be blogging again! I’m looking forward to sharing lots of new things this fall so stop back soon. I hope your summer was memorable and you are heading into the new season looking forward to all of the wonderful things to come! There are so many!

Leslie xo

Photo credit and many thanks to New Chapters Photography! Another favorite vendor!

Summer

Stone-Harbor-Sea-Glass-Beach (640x426)It’s hard to believe it’s July! Where did June go? Summer is moving along quickly and lately I find myself trying to slow it down in an effort to really enjoy each moment but like it or not, it just keeps moving. It’s been a busy year for our family. We have so many wonderful things happening. We welcomed my beautiful little granddaughter in May, we’re celebrating my daughter’s wedding in a matter of days and our entire family will be gathering at the beach for a wonderful summer vacation. My family is spread out from the West Coast to the East Coast but they are all slowly traveling to the same place to be together to celebrate and have a good time. I feel very blessed to have such wonderful people in my life. I want to soak up every minute with them and for that reason I will be taking a little break from blogging in order to fully enjoy every little thing that goes on! Don’t worry, I will be collecting photos and memories and will blog about all of it when I get back, especially the details of Elizabeth and Jon’s wedding! In the meantime if you’re looking for some recipes, DIY projects or things to do this summer, I have a few ideas. Check out these past blog posts.

Nut-Free-Pesto Nut Free Basil Pesto

Have some basil growing in your herb garden? Try making pesto. It’s quick, easy, and freezes well.

blackberry-jam Blackberry Jam

Capture the flavor of summer with this fresh blackberry jam recipe.

Peach-Berry-CrispPeach Berry Crisp

Peaches and berries come together to make this delicious summer dessert.

Sangria-TrioSangria

Who doesn’t love Sangria in the summer? Get ready for happy hour with these three recipes.

Stone-Harbor-Sea-Glass-1 (640x426)Sea Glass

Heading to the beach this summer? Keep your eyes open for Sea Glass. It’s one of the prettiest treasures on the beach.

Beaded Bracelet DIY DIY Beaded Bracelet Tutorial 

Looking for a summer project? Try making your own beaded bracelet.

Dip-Dye-Scarf-12 Simple Dip-Dye Scarf

Accessorize your summer wardrobe with this simple DIY project.

Celebrate the little things, enjoy the people around you and have a wonderful summer! I’ll see you soon!

Leslie xo