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So Good, They're Irresistible.....

Posted by Andie on April 25, 2013

Last year on his birthday, my husband told me he didn't want a birthday cake. (GASP!!)  I know, weird, right?  Now, before you think there is something wrong with my baking skills, let it be known that it's all him.  The man I married just isn't a dessert guy; in fact, he prefers fruit over treats nine times out of ten.  I don't pretend to understand it, because to me, not loving desserts is just unfathomable.  Possibly sinful, even.  

 

I decided to respect his wishes, but celebrating a birthday without a cake felt so wrong.  This year, I was going to whip up a cake, whether he wanted one or not.  

 

Last weekend, the unthinkable happened.  My husband asked me if I'd make Carmelitas for his "birthday cake" on Sunday.  (GASP!!)  I almost started crying!  The man was requesting a treat, and a delicious one at that!  I found this recipe for Carmelitas a few months ago on a blog called lulu the baker.  I had made them for a family party, and even my husband was impressed!  That's saying something, because he's the toughest dessert critic I know.

 

These Carmelitas are the perfect, heavenly marriage of oats, chocolate chips and caramel.  Seriously, I haven't tried a dessert this good in a LONG time.  I'm currently enjoying one for breakfast as I write this. (Beware, they are DANGEROUS.) As long as you aren't on a diet, make these right now.  (If you are on a diet I don't recommend it because there is no way you will have any self control once these are sitting on your kitchen counter.)  Thank you, Lulu, for sharing your delicious, life changing recipe! 

 

 

 

via lulu the baker

 

 

Carmelitas

by Melissa Bahen (via lulu the baker)

 

32 caramel squares, unwrapped
1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

Combine caramels and cream in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until completely smooth; set aside. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, and baking soda. Pat half of the oatmeal mixture into the bottom of an 8x8" pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over crust. Pour caramel mixture over chocolate chips. Crumble remaining oatmeal mixture over caramel. Return to oven and bake an additional 15-20 minutes, until the edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool completely before cutting.


*A stint in the fridge will help them cool off if you're pinched for time. They shouldn't be served cold, but all of that molten caramel takes a long time to cool down. They should be stored and served at room temperature.
**If you want to use homemade or store-bought caramel sauce in place of the caramel/cream mixture, use 1 1/4 cups of sauce.
***To make a 9x13" version, simply double the amounts. 

 

 

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Washi Tape Ideas

Posted by Andie on April 22, 2013

Washi tape seems to be one of the hottest crafting tools on the market these days.  It's been all over pinterest and DIY blogs lately, but still wondering what all the fuss is about?  

 

Washi tape originates from Japan, and is actually made from rice paper.  It's not as delicate as it sounds though, in fact, it basically feels and acts like masking tape.  Unlike plain masking tape though, washi tape is pretty!  It comes in a variety of beautiful patterns and colors!  Plus it's even reusable!  Some people are getting really creative and making their own pretty "wallpaper" with washi tape (perfect if you're renting) and others are using it in place of picture frames on the wall. 

kids room

via Alt

picture frames

via Bombshell Bling

wall paper

via East Coast Creative

light switch plate

via Tinker With This 

 

I like the idea of using washi tape above a desk in a home office, a playroom, or a kid's bedroom, but I have a feeling it wouldn't look as artistic in my living room as it does in some of these photos! What do you think?  

 

 

 

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You're Invited to a Patio Preview Party!

Posted by Andie on April 18, 2013

The other night some friends came over for dinner, and for the first time this season, we ate outside on the patio!  Our excitement at ushering in BBQ season was short-lived though.  Ten minutes after we started eating we had to move the party back inside the house because we were all freezing.  Ughhhh. 
 
I can't wait for warm weather.  
 
Entertaining family and friends, relaxing outside on the patio, and partaking of good eats are all key components to a successful summer in my book. Are you ready???  
 
RC Willey wants to help!  You're invited to a patio preview party, where you can come check out RC Willey's new selection of patio furniture, bistro sets, grills, outdoor rugs, fire pits, and patio accessories!
 
When: Friday, April 19th 
Time: 6:00pm- 9:00pm
 
There will be FREE BBQ sandwiches for everyone, music, and awesome prizes drawn that night, including a grill!  With different price points and styles, there really is something for everyone!  So make sure you're ready to bring on Summer!  And just to get you excited for Friday, here are some of my favorites......
 

 

 1, 2, 3

 

 

 

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

 

 

 

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

 

 

 

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Kitchen Table Quandary

Posted by Andie on April 16, 2013

I know this sounds ridiculous, but decorating kitchen tables stresses me out.    I don't want to go too far with the decor, because I hate the thought of having to take a bunch of "stuff" on and off every time I eat a meal.  On the other hand, I don't really like the look of a completely bare kitchen table either.  How do you strike a perfect balance?  Fruit?  Plants?  Bowls?  Pots?  Flowers?  Candles?  

 

Here are some pretty kitchen table photos that are a good starting point, though I'm still convinced there is a secret out there that I don't know about when it comes to kitchen table decor.  HELP!  What do you put on your kitchen table?

 

 

via pinterest

 

 

 

via pinterest

 

 

 

via pinterest

 

 

 

 

via lonny mag

 

 

 

via lonny mag

 

 

 

via lonny mag

 

 

via lonny mag

 

 

 

via decoist

 

 

 

via decoist

 

 

 

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Pastel Colors

Posted by Andie on April 11, 2013

If you look at the photos below and think you're having flashbacks to the 1980's.....you totally are.  It's been 25+ years, but pastels are re-emerging as a bright, calming, fun & soothing color option in fashion and home decor.  While Pantone selected Emerald as the color of 2013, several paint companies are putting their bets on pastels.  Benjamin Moore named "lemon sorbet" and Sherwin Williams chose "aloe" as their respective colors of the year.  

 

Sonu Matthew, senior interior designer for Benjamin Moore said, "Now we yearn for colors, designs and simplicity of the past.  It's not only a softening of the palette but a softening of the lines in design. There's more tactility in fabrics and surfaces. We'll find things that shimmer and shine next to things that are dead matte.  It's the partnering of extremes that catches our eye in 2013."

 

I've never been a huge fan of pastels, but I'm really liking the softness and femininity of the photos below.  I also love the idea of pairing pastels with deeply saturated, bright colors to create a striking contrast.  What do you think?

pastel piano 

via Your Home Based Mom

living room

via Decoholic

bedroom

via Rebecca Jud Loves

couch

via Craftberry Bush

 

 

 

 

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Front Door Colors

Posted by Andie on April 9, 2013

 

sources: 12345678

 

I love taking walks, going running, or driving through beautiful historic neighborhoods, because every time I do I get inspired.  I'm always impressed by charming architecture, well manicured lawns and flower beds, and the tiny details that make each house unique.  But without fail, the very first thing I notice about a home? The front door.  

 

The front door is the focal point, and often the first impression people get when visiting (or looking at) your home.  First impressions are everything.....so what is your front door saying about you?  

 

Looking fresh, vibrant and energized? Or tired, lifeless and run-down? 

 

Be honest.

 

If your front door could use a little love, what better way to welcome spring this year than by giving it a facelift?  Here are a 5 tips when it comes to painting your front door...

 

1. Go Bold!  You want your front door to pop, so pick a color that will make a statement!

2. Pick a color that contrasts with the rest of your house (enough to draw the eye but still works with surroundings)

3. Be true to yourself.  Sure, maybe the experts say a bright purple door would work wonders for your home, but if you hate the color purple, DON'T DO IT! You've got to love it. 

4. Take a photo of your house, cut out the front door, and use paint chips to test whether a color will work or not.

5. Take the time to do it right.  Here's an easy tutorial.  

     

 

sources: 1, 2 

 

 

What color is your front door?

 

 

 

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Interior Design Basics: Monochromatic Color Schemes

Posted by Andie on April 5, 2013

When it comes to design, color is king!  While they might appear totally effortless, beautiful interiors are executed meticulously with color theory in mind.  Good designers will almost always incorporate a tried and tested mechanical color scheme into their work.  So next time you think a designer just haphazardly threw a bunch of colors together to create a gorgeous room, think again. 

 

Today we are going to look at monochromatic color schemes.  

 

Monochromatic color schemes are based on just one color.  ONE COLOR!!  While monochromatic schemes definitely aren't my favorite, I do think that when they're done right they make a big statement.  To keep monochromatic rooms from feeling boring and stale, it's important to use a variety of different shades, tints, and intensities of the color you are using.  White and black can be added to the color scheme, and if you really want to, you can throw in a little accent color just for good measure.  Here are some pretty examples..... 

 

 

black room 

via Ideal Home

green room

via Ideal Home

blue room

via Domino

gray room

via One Kindesign

yellow room

via Contemporist

 

 What do you think about monochromatic rooms?

Like the look, or is it just too much for you?

 

 

 

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Trend Alert: Lacquer, Shine & Gloss

Posted by Andie on April 2, 2013

When asked by House Beautiful to predict one interior decorating trend that would make it big in 2013, designer Jeffrey Bilhuber responded with, "Gloss!  High gloss!  Shine!  Polish! Lacquer!" 

 

If you haven't already, you're going to start seeing lots of walls painted with a high gloss finish, lacquered kitchen cabinets, and shiny home accessories.  While I think the look is very sleek and sophisticated, I wonder how much staying power it really has.  I don't know that I'd have the guts to lacquer my kitchen cabinets, for fear that in a year or two the trend might be totally out..... would you?

 

 

via miles redd

 

 

 

via miles redd

 

 

 

via miles redd

 

 

 

elle decor via pinterest

 

 

 

 

via pinterest

 

 

 

via house & home

 

 

 

little green notebook via fieldstonehilldesign

 

 

 

 

via pinterest

 

 

 

 

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