Monthly Archives

February 2015

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Birthdays, For Kicks & Giggles

Play Date Party!

I always see the cutest parties on Pinterest and wish I had more reasons to throw my own, so I was thinking, why don’t I throw a themed play date! It’s always fun to get together with my friends. My children are always asking if we can invite friends over, and any excuse seems like a great one for a party so… a play date seemed perfect.

There are so many fun options for these play dates. Plan a party every other month or once a quarter and invite your friends and neighbors. Take turns, with someone new hosting each time. Wouldn’t it even be fun for each friend to bring another friend with them? It’s always fun to meet new people, but a little hard when all our focus is on the cute little kids we are raising. So get out and enjoy some mommy time while the kids have a blast playing with their friends. I want to hear all about the themes and parties you come up with, so send me your photos and lets get something fun started!

I chose a wild animal theme and my kids loved getting ready for this party. We sent out text message invitations that we made on our computer, I wrote that my kids were the hosts of the party, they thought that was pretty special. They were so excited to send out the invitations and watch the replies come back.

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Our table was covered in paper that the kids could color on.  We set out cups of crayons, frames with animals and place cards with each child’s name.  Each place setting also had an animal cookie favor and a coloring book to take home.

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Since we were hosting, we provided the main dish, black forest ham sandwiches.  Each friend brought a side dish and dessert to share.  We had the sandwiches, fruit salad, green salad, chips and mint chocolate cookies.  The kids not only loved it, they’re still talking about it!
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kids play party

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On one wall we put some sticker wall decals of jungle animals and all the kids stood at our Photo Booth for a fun picture!  Of course, the moms loved this most because, who doesn’t love pictures of their little darlings?
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We tried to get a group shot, but this picture about sums up how they felt about more pictures, so we let them run off to the playroom while we caught up and talked.  It’s always great to get together so don’t wait for an event, make your own!DSC_0080

You might be thinking… parties are just too expensive!  WELL, this whole thing cost me $20!  I got all the coloring books and wall decals for the photo booth and frames at the dollar store.  We bought the sandwich ingredients and french bread and animal cookies at the grocery store and made everything at home.  With all the friends bringing a side dish, it made this a cheap, stressless party.  Get planning and tell me all about it!

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Recipes

Bruschetta Chicken

 

I constantly find myself facing the dilemma of wanting a fancy meal but not wanting to buy a paycheck worth of expensive ingredients that I’ll most likely only use once.  With this recipe you won’t find any ingredients that break the bank, it’s simply delicious.  It’s perfect for family dinner or date night. Try it out and let us know what you think!

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You’ll need:
4-5 chicken breasts
2 eggs
garlic salt
bread crumbs
2 tbsp butter

cream cheese
2 tomatoes
1 garlic clove
fresh basil
balsamic vinegar
olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt the butter in the bottom of a baking dish. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and set aside. Place bread crumbs on a plate (I used gluten free for our family allergies but any kind is great). Dip each chicken breast in the egg mixture, coating completely. Sprinkle coated chicken with garlic salt on both sides, transfer to bread crumbs and coat both sides. Lay in baking dish. Repeat with each chicken breast. Cover the chicken with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

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Meanwhile, chop tomatoes and basil and combine in a small bowl. Add pressed garlic, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil and toss mixture together. Set aside.

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Place baked chicken on serving dish, while chicken is hot, add a spoonful of cream cheese on top of each chicken breast and top with bruschetta. Serve immediately.

Enjoy!

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Decor, DIY

Conversation Dessert Plates

Conversation plates liven up any event, not to mention they are so easy to make.  We all know you’ve been dying to be asked, “If you could have any super power, what would it be?” Well here’s your chance! Make conversation plates and that question is guaranteed to be brought up. I have noticed that conversations can become repetitive.  Although I love talking to my family, it’s refreshing when I get the chance to spark up conversations that are different than any others. It’s a new and interesting way to ask questions that you wouldn’t normally ask.  With this technique you can put anything you want on a plate or mug, don’t limit yourself.  Design your dishes to match your personality.

Plates cost $1.49 each.  Available at Standard Restaurant Supply in Salt Lake.

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Instructions:

Wash plate and dry thoroughly.

Use a Sharpie Paint Pen Oil based. (Available at Michael’s) Write on the plate, if you make a mistake, quickly wipe off with cotton ball and alcohol.

Write on the plate.  Let it dry for 3 full days.  Place on rack of cold oven.  Turn oven on to 425 degrees and Bake for 1 1/2 hours.  Turn off oven but don’t remove plates until oven is completely cool.

Always wash plates by hand.

Ideas you can write on the plates:

If the whole world were listening, what would you say?

If you could be another person for a day, who would you be?

If you could meet any famous person, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

If you could travel back in time, where would you go?

If you could relive any moment in your life which moment would it be and why?

If you could be remembered for one thing, what would it be?

If you could have one super human power, what would it be?

If you could live anywhere for one year, all expenses paid, where would you live?

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Holidays, Weddings

Soda Bar

Are you looking for the perfect detail that will make your party or wedding stand out? Look no further, custom labeled sodas is what you need! These sodas are so perfect for every party you can think of. Today I want to show them to you in a wedding soda bar setting.

My sisters each had these served at their weddings, and guests not only loved to drink them but some even took one on the way out as a souvenir! We just loved how these sodas were customized with their names, wedding date and matched the colors of each of their weddings.

At Paulina’s wedding we served black cherry to match her wedding colors.

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Samantha’s wedding had a soda bar with 4 different kinds of sodas.  Give your sodas a fun flavor name… Celebration Cream Soda, Forever Mine Raspberry Lime, Perfect Pair Pineapple… there are so many options that your guests will love reading, get creative!

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So now, I bet you’re wondering where you can get these fabulous sodas? Lucky for us, we have a great Local Review this week about Custom Soda Labels, a company right here in Sandy, Utah. Check out their review to learn all about the wonderful products they offer that can be customized just for you. Custom Soda Labels is also giving our readers a fun giveaway AND a discount on your next soda purchase!

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Local Reviews, Specialty Shops

Custom Soda Labels

 

Located: 582 West 8360 South
Sandy, Utah
Hours: Monday-Friday 9:00-4:00
Appointment needed for pick up
Phone: 801-994-6490
Website: www.customsodalabels.com

Custom Soda Labels is a local Utah company that creates labels of your choice for over a dozen flavors of sodas and pure spring water. You can visit their website to create a label to fit your special event or add your business logo. These custom labels are also available with full color photos and are made right in house so the options are endless!

Along with the option to create a special label just for you, Custom Soda Labels also has a variety of pre-printed labels that you can order for holidays, birthdays, thank you, get well, to brighten someone’s day, and so much more. I just love to keep these on hand at home for a quick and unique gift. If you’re planning a holiday party, head over to Custom Soda Labels and pick up a case of sodas that will give you that extra detail your buffet or table needs to stand out.

Mark Stallings, Owner of Custom Soda Labels.

 

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I have used these sodas for my kids birthday parties, Valentine’s school parties, Easter buffets, an anniversary party, graduation, weddings, Halloween, teacher appreciation gifts and Christmas neighbor and friend gifts.

When ordering bulk for your wedding day, make an appointment and they will help you create the perfect label, special for your event!

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Local Utah residents who  pick up their orders at the Sandy warehouse, will receive the special “locals only” price below. Make sure you ask for the local pick up pricing when you order.
4 pack totes: $8 (perfect for gifts)
12 count case: $23
24 count case: $40
(All pricing above includes the soda AND the labels)
*Pricing on their website includes the shipping costs for those unable to pick up orders.
*quantity discounts are also available!

Bonus… because Custom Soda Labels creates and prints labels in-house, you can have any type or size of label made, even if it’s not for sodas. We had labels made with our Salt Sky logo that we put on candy jars, cards, gift baskets and our folders. Maybe you have a special need for a beautiful full color sticker… they can do that for you!

Custom Soda Labels has a special offer for our readers! Use the code
localutah at check out for 35% off your order online! This offer is valid on all pick up orders. They are also doing a giveaway for a 12 pack case of sodas to one lucky winner! Check out our Instagram and Facebook to enter!

So there you go… a Pinterest style party detail made right here in Utah!  I hope you’ll go see them and take advantage of the fabulous products they have to offer!

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Recipes

Healthy Pancake Breakfast

 

We’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  It provides the nutrients and energy we need to help us concentrate and have the energy we need to get through the morning.  Studies show that breakfast can be important in maintaining a healthy body weight, and that is my favorite part.

Today, I want to share with you a family favorite that I have grown up with.  Our friend Anitra Kerr introduced us to her famous wheat pancakes many years ago and one simply can’t tire of them.  I love that I can make enough of these little pancakes and keep them in the fridge for a few days.  They are perfect on the go as I rush out the door in the morning.

Blender Wheat Pancakes

1 cup wheat kernels

1 1/2 c. buttermilk

Blend the above two ingredients in the blender for 4 minutes.

Add the following ingredients and continue to mix in the blender for 3 more minutes.

2 eggs

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 c. oil

2 tsp. baking powder

3 TBL brown sugar

On a buttered skillet, pour batter about silver dollar size to cook.

Serve with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or bananas.

These may just become your favorite too. Enjoy!

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All about lips!
Beauty

All about lips

Big lips, thin lips, kissable lips, smooth lips, sexy lips, all sorts of lips. I have found that lipstick makes all the difference. Whether you are all dolled up or going for a more natural look, lip color is a must. It doesn’t matter if you pick lipstick, lip gloss or a colored chapstick. You can choose anything from a subtle color to a bold look to show some personality. I personally always pick colors that are subtle, but today I decided to play with all sorts of color.  Sometimes it’s great to go outside your comfort zone and try something new.  Just remember to have fun!

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Pink lip color. Chubby stick by Clinique  Pink lips

 This pink lip color is  Clinique Chubby Stick in woppin watermelon. It is soft and not sticky. This is one of my go to colors for an everyday look.

RED

  Red lips

This red lipstick is called Color Crush from The Body Shop. If you are looking to go bold or for a night out on the town, this is a great option.

CORAL

Coral Lipstick   Coral lipstick by Lancome

Pink to the Club lipstick from Lancome is a fun one. It has a shimmer to it and looks great with almost anything.

There are many benefits of wearing  lipstick other than enhancing your appearance. Lipstick is great for hydrating those gorgeous lips. It helps preserve the natural state of the skin. Hydration is  important because lips can be very sensitive, which brings me to the last thing. Some lipsticks have sunscreen in them, which can block harmful  UV rays that cause damage.  So remember, there is more to lipstick than just the appearance.

Now go make somebody’s day by kissing them with those fabulous looking lips!

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Men

Why Men Still Wear a Wrist Watch

Wrist watches can be traced back as early as 1880. Pocket watches were clumsy to carry and difficult to operate, so soldiers started fitting them with primitive leather straps that could be worn on the wrist, thereby freeing their hands during battle. In 1905, Rolex was founded by Hans Wilsdorf who played a significant role in binging the traditional pocket watch to be worn on the wrist.

At Salt Sky we asked men why they love to wear a watch. Here is what a few of them said:

“With smart phones, clocks in cars, etc. wearing a time piece on my wrist isn’t just about knowing what time of day it is. I wear a watch to complete an outfit and make a statement.”

“Men have few options to wear accessories or jewelry. That is why I enjoy dressing up with a nice watch. It is a touch, like nice shoes that really makes a difference, but most can’t put their finger on why one guy looks better than most.”

“I would feel naked without it. I think in part it’s out of habit, but it’s also a fashion statement. The guys who wear expensive watches do it for a status statement, something to be proud about. I love watches!”

We asked Liz Gibbs, sales associate at OC Tanner Rolex Boutique why men still love a nice watch. She said:

“Often, a nice time piece is one of the only pieces of jewelry a gentleman will wear. It can enhance a casual outfit and add sophistication to a suit. The Rolex name is built on quality and integrity, with the finest movements, and materials. They are made to last a lifetime and meant to be passed down from generation to generation.”

So there you have it. Men love a fashion statements just as much as women do. So, if you want to be noticed, remember to slap a watch on your wrist today.

For great, friendly advice on what watch is best for you, visit our friends at Rolex, located at City Creek Center in downtown Salt Lake.

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A story about two friends that welcomed a stranger and answered a prayer.
Inspiration, Stories

Never, Ever Alone

Today I was thinking about a time when I felt alone and lost. My family had just moved to the United States, it was a cold November in 1977. I had gone to school and felt hopeless. I simply could not understand the English language. No matter how hard I tried I could not make sense of even the simplest sentence.

This particular day had been especially hard. As I walked home from school with some girls from my neighborhood, all I could think about was how badly I wanted to go back to my home in Chile, to my school and my friends and my teachers that I loved, and to everything that was familiar to me. Yet, I knew that was not an option and sadness consumed me. When we got to my street, I waved goodbye to the girls and they proceeded to tell me something that I could not understand. Soon they started using their hands to explain it to me, but I still didn’t get it. The rest of the way home I felt even more hopeless. How could I ever master such a difficult language? My feelings finally exploded into tears that came from a well of frustration. I cried for a long time.

I got home and knelt and prayed. I will never forget the feeling that came over me. Slowly I realized that I had been crying for someone to understand and help me. I had been crying because I felt there was no one to turn to. But all the time, God was there waiting for me to recognize His great love. As my feelings started to change, I felt as if the Savior was beside me listening. I realized that He could fully understand my problems and knew me. I also felt that in time and with hard work everything would be ok. That day I exchanged my burdens for the calm assurance of His love and in a small way came to understand that He is much closer to us than I realized.

That same evening a knock came at our door. There on my front porch were the girls who had walked me home holding a plate of cookies. They explained to my dad, who was our family translator, that they had tried to tell me that they were going home to make cookies for me, but I may have not understood them. Heavenly Father had not only heard my pleas that day and calmed my troubled heart, but He had sent sweet friends to brighten my day.

Whose life can you touch this week?  In case you want to make cookies for someone this week, here is a favorite family recipe.

This piece is dedicated to Sue Martin Anderson and Shannon Sisam Wilde.

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SUGAR COOKIES

1 cup butter (softened)

1 ½ cups sugar

3 eggs

1 cup milk

1 tsp. vanilla

Blend all above ingredients together.

 Mix dry ingredients:

2 ½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt

6 cups flour

Add to batter and mix well.

Put in refrigerator for 15 minutes.

Roll out and cup into shapes or roll a spoonful of dough into a ball with your hands and press onto cookie sheet with your fingers to flatten.

Bake at 350* for 8 minutes.

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

16 oz. cream cheese

1 ½ cup powdered sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1 cup heavy cream

Whip heavy cream for 2 minutes.

Add all other ingredients.

Add a few drops of food coloring.

Enjoy!

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Family Adventures & Travel

5 Tips to a Cheap Roadtrip

Road trips are not a universally loved event.  Some people are fine with long car rides and some people (like me) can’t stand them.  However, the stops along the way are always worth it!  So whether you love road trips or hate them, these tips will help you do it cheap.  Because saving money IS a universally loved thing!

1. Pack light.  I’m so guilty of overpacking.  I start with adding a few unnecessary t-shirts and before you know it I’m packing our microwave “just in case”. The more you weigh down your car, the more gas you’re going to burn.  Consider what you’re packing.  Do you really need 9 pairs of shoes for a drive down to Cali?  Probably not.

2.  Take a cooler full of food.  Devan and I recently took a road trip to Northern California and if you’ve been to Cali then you know food there is not cheap.  Eating out really adds up (and adds on the pounds) so get a cooler with ice and fill it with sandwich ingredients, apples, granola bars and treats.  Plan out what nights you want to eat out and where!

3. Consider where you are going to stay.  Sometimes staying at a nicer hotel is worth the money.  Devan and I tried to take the cheap route and stay at a cheap motel in town on one of our trips and a few of our things conveniently went missing… Maybe the hotel up the street wasn’t such a bad option.  You should also consider your safety.  The bad side of town and tourists do NOT mix.

4.  Plan out activities.  Road trips offer a lot of exciting adventures but those adventures can add up.  Instead of going zip lining, river rafting and bungee jumping; pick one.  Guided tours and activities are very expensive and you don’t have to do it all.  Go on a hike, star gaze, make a fire on the beach, those things can be done for free!

5.  Set a budget.  This tip is the least fun but I promise it will help. Sit down and decide ahead of time what you are willing to spend and break that up into categories of food, activities, gas, and lodging.  Don’t go into debt for a trip.  The memories might last a lifetime but so will the credit card debt!

Since I’m sure you’ve have been on road trips, what tips do you have to add to this?Where is your favorite place to go on a road trip?

How do you pass the time in the car?

Let me know your answers to these questions. I’m always looking for more tips!

XOXO

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Decor, DIY

DIY Woven Chair

It’s amazing what can be done with a thrift store chair and a little string.  For this DIY I’m going to show you how to make and Anthropologie style chair for a few bucks.

Materials you’ll need:

Chair with some kind of wicker back

Paint Gripper

Paint (any color you like)

A variety of lace, ribbon and string

Step 1.  Wash the chair.  If you got it from a thrift store, it probably hasn’t been washed since its previous owner, and you don’t know what germs that might introduce into your house.

Step 2.  Lightly sand it. Take the gripper and cover the entire chair with a light, even coat.  I chose gripper because it’s easier than sanding down completely and repainting it.

Step 3.  Paint!  Paint a few coats over the gripper OR if you’re lazy like me, go get indoor spray paint from Home Depot and give it a few coats. (be sure to spray it outside though.)

Step 4.  After the paint is dry, take your string and in straight vertical lines wrap designs through the chair.  You can experiment with this, there are no rules. Criss-cross, weave, tie knots.  Whatever you like. Use picture below as a reference if you need inspiration!

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I have always wanted to do this!

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Weddings

7 Hot Wedding Colors for 2015

Are you getting married or helping to plan a wedding in 2015? I have some color pallets that are just stunning this year. Some are timeless and some are new and trending. When planning your big day, it’s crucial to carry around in your purse the color swatches! I think I could work on wedding planning everyday and be happy, it’s just so much fun to gather all the special details. It might be stressful to plan a wedding but it’s also a lifetime of memories you’re making, so enjoy the ride!

1. Lilac: The color combination of lilac, grey and off white is just stunning. I can see this look in an elegant wedding today or in Victoria magazine from back in the day… anyone remember that magazine? Gorgeous! I used to love to look at my mom’s Victoria collection. I put together a vintage look for this color pallet, what a beautiful backyard wedding this would be.

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2. Marsala: This new wedding trend is refreshing. I like these colors mixed together: marsala/wine, light grey, dk gray/navy tint and blush. When using this color combination, marsala/wine is going to be your main accent. Notice the bouquet is mostly blush and off white with accents in marsala and gray. Touches everywhere will just make your wedding stand out this year.

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3. Orange & Pomegranate. This year use fruit in your arrangements and decor. These colors are just stunning in an elegant indoor or outdoor wedding. I love this color pallet of tangerine and pomegranate. Not only are the colors rich and fabulous together, but use the actual fruits in your florals. Accent your picture table with bowls filled with tangerines and pomegranates. I also think adding a graphic of a tangerine to a favor would just tie it all together. There are so many shades you can use in this pallet that will all compliment each other.

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4. Coral, blush & gray. Yes, we love gray this year! Whether in interior design or your special event, it’s just a spectacular color. There are gray succulents that you’ll see in this bridal bouquet, use them throughout the reception. It adds just a little bit of that outdoor, desert look and mixes it with the elegance of blush and coral roses and peonies. The clothing, jewelry, cake, flowers, favors, invitations can all have a combination of the entire color pallet and it won’t be too much. I just wish I had these flowers in my front room today, aren’t they so happy and beautiful?

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5. Hot pink and yellow. Bright? Yes! This wedding just says fun. I can picture the bridesmaids and groomsmen having a great time on the dance floor. A reception filled with sweets and a photo booth with great props! If you’re looking for a great summertime party, these colors would just be perfect.

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6. Coral to light pink. I love how soft and beautiful this is together. This vintage wedding would be fabulous with some comforts of home. Whether indoor or outdoor create some wonderful seating areas with pillows, backdrops and ribbon garlands. Creating areas that all serve a purpose for entertaining will make your guests comfortable and relaxed at your special day.

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7.Last but not least. Navy, gold, deep yellow. You’ll see a lot of weddings this year in navy blue with different accents but one of those is gold. I love the gold accents in this color pallet. Use lemons as accents and yellow shoes for the bridesmaids, it’s just too cute. I fell in love with these cake pops, they’d be so beautiful in a dessert bar. This wedding can be fun and casual or elegant. It would also make a beautiful sit down dinner.

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Good luck planning your big day! What colors are you planning this year? Send me pictures, I’d love to see them!

Things to love in this post:
May Flowers- Carolyn May 801-661-2855, Instagram
Elly’s Cakes- visit her blog to see more!
Refined Vintage Events- visit their website
Kate Pease Photography- For all our Dallas/Fort Worth friends! Visit her site and on Facebook.

Lilac shoes, Coral RSVP, Straws, yellow bridesmaid shoes, orchid/gold cake

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