You’re A Peach {free printable tag}

Perfect healthy neighbor/friend gift. Drop by a basket of peaches adorned with this watercolor "You're a Peach" gift tag printable {there is also a Silhouette print & cut file} - purdueavenue

I know that we’re a little ahead of the season here in Arizona when it comes to growing.  The warmer weather has it’s benefits when the peaches are ripe this early!!  It’s the perfect healthy snack to drop by a friend/neighbors house to let them know how great they are.  Since I can’t share our tree-ripened peaches with all of you, I thought I’d share this free printable tag!  That way, when peach season hits in your area – you’ll be ready to share the love! I like to print mine onto watercolor paper – just to give it a nice texture and make it look more authentic.

You can create your own tags like this one using these water color pencils and a wet paint brush.  Or alternatively, I really like using these water brushes instead of the wet paint brush – I feel like I have more control over the amount of water distributed, and you don’t have to worry about the cup of water that needs constant changing.  Plus – it makes it easy to travel with and play around when I’m not in a place where I want to drag out a lot of supplies.  You really should try it out!  It’s easier than you think!

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{If you have a Silhouette Cameo – you can download the print & cut file HERE}

**Tip: To glam it up – you can always use a sprinkle of white edible baking glitter on the peaches!  Just wash the peach and sprinkle the glitter on while it’s still damp – it will stick even after it’s dried!

 

Enjoy!

**Erin

 

Bake Group: Mothers Day with Baking Chez Moi

Bake Group Pin It Image

Bake Group is one of my favorite things.  I get to feed my belly…and feed my soul with some of the amazing women I am blessed to call my friends.

What is Bake Group?  We basically review recipe books…via taste testing.   We choose a book, each pick a recipe, and have a little soiree while we taste the outcome & talk about how hard/easy the recipe was to make, what we might do differently, and wether it’s worth purchasing the book or not.

This month (and last month, actually – I still need to get that one posted, too!) we reviewed tasted  Baking Chez Moi: Recipes from My Paris Home to Your Home Anywhere by Dorie Greenspan.  The verdict??  You need this book in your life.  Not only do the recipes LOOK delightful, but all of them (& counting this one, we’ve made 9 of the recipes) – all DELICIOUS – all fairly easy to prepare.  That’s the sign of a good recipe book in my life!  We’ve had some great books, but this is by far MY FAVORITE!!!  Trust me when I say that you NEED this book in your life.   Here’s what we made today – and you can decide for yourself:

 Smoothest, Silkiest, Creamiest, Tartest Lime Tart

This is THEE BEST Lime Tart I've ever had!! No subtlety to the lime, but not too tart.   #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #LimeTartRecipe #LimeTart

That really is the title of the recipe in the book.  Believe me when I say that it’s the correct title.  Vickie chose this one…and nailed it!  She said that she was surprised at how much lime zest was in the recipe – but I’m so glad there was.  There’s nothing worse than biting into a lime tart – or key lime pie and trying to find the lime in it.  Not the case here.  The topping was a mixture of sour cream and confectioners sugar helping the zing factor along nicely.  The crust tasted almost like a shortbread cookie.  I REALLY LOVED IT!

 

Palets de Dames, Lille Style

Meant to resemble womens parasols - these are like a sugar cookie - only airier and lighter.  SO GOOD!! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #sugarcookie #frenchcookie

Meant to resemble womens parasols – these are like a sugar cookie – only airier and lighter. SO GOOD!! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #sugarcookie #frenchcookie

While the name isn’t easy to pronounce, these cookies were easy to take down.  The frosting was really more of a glaze and had hardened slightly – which I liked.  They are like a sugar cookie, only airier and lighter.  Which could pose a problem.  Sugar cookies tend to be heavy enough that it’s easy to stop at one…not the case here.

The author said that they are meant to resemble women’s parasols – they were darling to look at.  Karin said that she would double the batch, as this yielded only 20 cookies – even though the recipe said 40, and that tinting the glaze in a variety of colors would be easy.  Perfect for a party!

 

Carrément Chocolate, The Simple Loaf

This chocolate cake loaf was AMAZING.  With chunks of salted chocolate mixed throughout...a very good recipe! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #chocolatecakeloaf #chocolate

This chocolate cake loaf was AMAZING. With chunks of salted chocolate mixed throughout…a very good recipe! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #chocolatecakeloaf #chocolate

Randi made this beauty.  INCREDIBLE!!  There were chunks of salted chocolate mixed throughout the loaf cake – so every now and again you’d catch a bite that just elevated the whole delicious thing.  She said that it was very easy to make, and would make a beautiful gift for a friend.  She served it with fresh whipped cream and raspberries.  They cut the richness of the chocolate enough that eating a whole slice was no problemo!

Odile’s Fresh Orange Cake with Poached Citrus Topping

This cake is perfect for making a day ahead.  It soaks up all of the juices and was moist perfection!! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #OdilesFreshOrangeCake #PurdueAvenue

This cake is perfect for making a day ahead. It soaks up all of the juices and was moist perfection!! #PurdueAvenueBakeGroup #BakingChezMoi #OdilesFreshOrangeCake #PurdueAvenue

I chose to make this one, because the author said that she liked it better the next day.  Since I was hosting – making my dessert ahead of time was VERY appealing!  {With that said, I should have photographed it the first day.  The citrus was plump and juicy looking – where the second day it looked a little sad.}

It was so easy to make.  The whole thing was done in 30-40 minutes – including baking time.  I will say, I wish I had done only oranges.  The grapefruit was a little too much bitter for me.  I think I would have liked pure sweetness.  The orange gave enough tartness to overpower any sickly sweetness there might have been.

My favorite part of this recipe was zesting an orange into the sugar and then rubbing it together with my fingertips to combine until the sugar was orange scented.  {You can see pictures of the process on my Instagram Feed}  The smell was INCREDIBLE!!  Such an interesting technique that I think I’ll incorporate into a lot of other recipes.  That sugar was mixed with eggs, flour, baking soda, salt, & butter for a simple batter.

For the topping, the citrus was sliced and poached – and then the poaching liquid was drizzled over the warm cake.  It just absorbed into the cake and it elevated the flavor like you wouldn’t believe!!  The hardest part of this whole thing?  Slicing the citrus.  Make sure that you have a sharp knife!!  I mangled the fruit pretty bad and went through WAY more than was called for!  Ha Ha.

Because I admire these women so much, not just as people – but as Mothers – I wanted to make something for them to take away besides a belly ache….since you don’t even get the belly ache – here is a little Mother’s Day Gift for you!  I put 2 on a page so that you can print one for a Mother that you admire, too!!

#MothersDayPrintable #PurdueAvenue #Motherhood #NeilLAnderson

#MothersDayPrintable #PurdueAvenue #Motherhood #NeilLAnderson

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Here is a shot of the place setting: I placed a small arrangement of flowers at each persons place setting using my collection of mis-matched crystal glasses.  {I scour Goodwill for them every time I go in!} The place card & Art Print were made using the Heidi Swapp Minc Foil {watch for that tutorial soon!}

Mothers Day Table Setting - visit the blog for a free Motherhood Printable!

And her is a full shot of the tablescape:

Mothers Day Tablescape

I hope that you all have a WONDERFUL Mother’s Day!

 

**Erin

A Meaningful Mothers Day Gift Idea…

Meet my super cute Grandma…

Grandma Cutie

She was as sweet as she looks.  Every year for my birthday, I could count on a sweet handwritten letter with a coin from the year I was born included.  This was a pretty impressive feat since she had 55 Grandkids and 126 Great Grandkids!  She passed away {on my birthday – sigh} almost 11 years ago.  I still read her letters that I have saved from birthdays past, and enjoy the wisdom and love in them that I should have appreciated more in my youth.

As I was reading one last year, a particular phrase stood out to me because – well – I wasn’t having a very good year.  It seemed like all of the elements were combining against our little family and I was being a bit of a whiner about it all.  But then I read these loving words from my sweet Grandma:

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“Live a good life and be happy”

I thought that it needed to be cross-stitched and hung somewhere that I could see it EVERY DAY.

BUT since that isn’t really my style – and there is just something wonderfully nostalgic about her beautiful penmanship, and the way she writes her “and” sideways. (I always loved that) I knew that I needed to do something using her own hand.  I opted for making this pillow using my Silhouette Cameo:

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Once it was finished – I just knew that my mom would love it, and since it was almost Mothers Day,  I chose to give it to her as a gift.  She loved it…and she cried.  And isn’t that the point of giving a gift?  That the recipient loves it SO MUCH that they can’t keep their emotions from bubbling over?  I knew that it was where it belonged.

I need to make another one for me…and I’d be happy to make one for you, too.  HEAD OVER TO THE SHOP and order yours now.

Like it?  Love it?  Need it?

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or you can always pin it for later:

Customized Pillows from PurdueAvenue.com

I hope that you love it!!

**Erin

p.s. while you’re there – it’s not too late to order yourself one of my easter pillows!

Burlap Bunny Pillow with Gold Flecked Pom-Pom Tail - PurdueAvenue.com

Photo Ornaments

I believe in printing photos. I believe in giving photos as gifts. I believe in decorating your home with the photos you love. This project combines all three.

How to make a photo ornament:

Create a 5×7 (or you could do a 4×6) in photoshop (or whatever editing program you’re using) and use grid lines to divide it into quarters. Then choose your four images, open them, and drag them onto your 5×7. You can resize them first so they fit into one of the quarters, or you can resize them after dragging them onto your image by simply holding down your shift key and dragging the corners to resize. You can use the text tool to add the year, or you could hand-stamp that on later.

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I printed my 5×7 already mounted on a board. If your lab doesn’t offer that option, you could try mounting it on styrene board with spray adhesive. Let me know how that goes.  (see update at end of post)

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Cut the four images apart with kitchen scissors. It’s alright if the edges are rough.

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Drill holes for hanging.

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Take sandpaper and sand the edges, even taking some of the image itself off.

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Put a ribbon through, and you have a beautiful keepsake. We love pulling out these ornaments every year and putting them on our tree!

ornamentsWEB02 ornamentsWEB03 ornamentsWEB01

I try to make a couple of these every year with my favorite photos, and I also make an ornament for everyone whose picture I have taken during the year and send it to them at Christmas time.

 

 

Updated: I tried making these by mounting the picture myself, using a board from an old school binder my son had that was falling apart. The edges don’t sand the same way, so I cut them rounded to make it look a little more finished. And be careful not to get glue all over the picture. Other than that, it worked great and was super simple. I even made the holes by just pushing a ballpoint pen through the board because I was extra lazy.

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Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

I’m loving the brown bag look this year.  I’ve made my advent calendar out of them…

Brown-Bag-Stars

It’s really easy to make them…

Step 1:

Trace a star onto a brown paper bag

Trace

Step 2:

Stitch around the star.  Just pivot your needle to get a sharp turn.

**Pivot means to leave the needle down – raise the foot – turn it the direction you need to go next – lower the foot.**

**Also – just a note – if you give yourself a excess thread to start – you can use that to hang your star!

Stitch

Step 3: Cut around the star outside of the stitching – make sure to leave a little space so that you don’t cut the stitches.

Step 4: Stamp or handwrite the numbers.  I only do 12 days of Christmas – because an activity every night for 25 days makes me super tired!

Stamp

Step 5: Punch out as many tags as you have stars, then write 1 activity on each one – then slide them inside of the star at the opening we left in step 2.

Activity-Tag

Here is a list of possible activities:

Visit Santa

Hang your lights

Decorate the tree

Watch your favorite Christmas Movie

Make neighbors goodies and go caroling to deliver them

Drive around looking at the lights while listening to Christmas tunes

Make cookies for Santa (this is Christmas Eve for us)

Draw family gift exchange names and go shopping!

Make an ornament (we do this every year and the kids decorate their tree with them)

Do an act of service for someone in need

Write our “Gifts to Jesus”

(every year – we write something we will try to improve about ourselves and wrap it up – we open them the following year to see how we did)

Go see the lights at the temple and listen to the Nativity while drinking Hot Cocoa

(the LDS Temples do a fantastic job putting up beautiful lights and have a Nativity Scene telling the story of the birth of Christ.)

Those are ours…what will yours be?
Step 6: Hang the stars wherever you like.

I hung mine from the ceiling by tying a knot in the thread and stapling them in place.

Hanging from the tree would be cute too!!  Or just tuck them into some garland and don’t hang them at all…

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On another note…but along the same lines…

I LOVE paper mache boxes.  I’ve been collecting them for a few years – and I’m hoping to someday replace wrapping paper all together.

I love the idea of being able to slap their gifts into “Brown Paper Packages” and “Tie them up with String”.  And be done.  That would be a favorite thing…ha ha.  (By the way – here is a link to Some GREAT TWINE!)

Here are some ideas of how to make them fabulous:

1. Keep it pure. Just the box, some string and some Jingle Bells

Jingle-Bells

2: Cover them in fabric or paper

**Spray the box with spray adhesive (or use mod podge) and smooth fabric into place.

Wait for it to dry and then trim the excess fabric ( I use an exacto knife to trim)

Fabric

3. Line them with Vintage Tinsel

**Just run a line of glue around the edge of the box, and press the tinsel into place.  Super easy!

Trim

4. Polka Dot It

**I used the end of a glue stick and a craft paint stamp pad.  The bottom of an eraser will work,

or anything you can find around the house…

Polka

The great thing about these boxes is that they come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and they nest together for easy storage.

And they can be used for Birthdays, Christmas, Impromptu presents, other holidays!!  Just keep reusing them!!

If you don’t want the expense of the boxes – but love the look of Brown Paper Packages – Target has a GREAT wrapping paper in their stores.

It’s just Brown Kraft – but has gray pinstripes – so it makes it look a little more sophisticated.  I am loving it.

Brown-Paper-Package

And – you can get the chalkboard gift tags in my shop – ;0)

Enjoy!

**Erin