Saturday Spirits: Gin & Herbs Spring Cocktail

Herb & Gin Cocktail from A Well Crafted Party

My favorite thing about Spring is the emergence of all the fresh herbs. This cocktail is the perfect mix of fresh herbs and the wonderful aromatics of gin.

Ingredients
Shaker
Muddler
Ice
Rocks glass with Ice
4 Slices of Cucumber (3 for beverage and 1 for garnish)
1 sprig thyme for garnish
1 oz Basil & Thyme Simple Syrup (See recipe below)
½ oz lime juice ( ½ of freshly squeezed lime)
1 ¼ oz Gin
2 oz Sparkling Water (Or Soda Water)

Directions
1. Put ice, 3 slices of cucumber, 1 oz of basil & thyme simple syrup, squeeze of lime juice, and the half of the lime into a shaker—Muddle
2. Pour gin into shaker, cover, and shake vigorously
3. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice
4. Pour in sparkling water and garnish with cucumber slice and thyme sprig
5. Enjoy!

Herb & Gin Cocktail from A Well Crafted Party

How to Make a Basil & Thyme Simple Syrup
1. Put a handful of basil leaves and several sprigs of thyme into a small sauce pan with 1 cup of granulated sugar and 1 cup of water. 2. Stir the mixture as it heats on medium-low heat until the sugar has completely dissolved (about four minutes) 3. Remove from heat and let it sit for 30 minutes to 1 hour. 4. Once cooled, taste to see mixture as it sits to get your desired herbal flavor. 5. Once you have your desired flavor pour mixture over a sieve— to strain the solid from syrup—into a jar.The mixture can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one month.

Originally published on InComplete Magazine

Saturday Spirits: Pear & Apple Cider Sangria

Pear and Apple Cider Sangria // A Well Crafted Party

I had a really difficult time figuring out the name for this drink. It is similar to a punch, but I made it in singles. Sort of a sangria, but I don’t know many sangrias with bourbon in them. So, name it whatever you want… but, it is a tasty fall beverage!

Every year it begins to really feel like Fall to me when I get to attend the local Pear and Apple festival at the Portland Nursery. I load up on apples and pears and incorporate them in EVERYTHING until I run out. One year I bought 60 lbs of apples and pears and ended up making a ton of apple sauce, apple butter, apple pies, and many apple desserts. This year I knew that my kitchen time would be limited so I didn’t indulge quite as much as I’d have liked to… but, we did enjoy the Hard Apple Cider tasting and came home with a 20 lbs of apples and pears as well as a few delicious ciders and wines.

A few of those purchases are featured in this drink. I’m hoping that you are able to find these brands because they are fantastic, but if not then I’d suggest looking at the flavor profile and finding something similar near you. This drink is totally worth it.

Pear and Apple Cider Sangria // A Well Crafted Party

Ingredients:

(Makes 1 Beverage– Though, you can multiple by 4 easily to make a pitcher!)

  • 1 1/4 oz Bourbon (I used Buffalo Trace)
  • 2 oz Pear Wine (I used Bull Run Pear Wine )
  • 3 oz Hard Apple Cider ( I used Shilling Oak Aged Cider )
  • Squeeze of 1 large lemon slice
  • Sliced, ripe pears (I used Anjou pears and had about 4-5 slices per glass)
  • Glass with ice

Directions:

  1. Fill a glass with ice, putting in slices of pear along the way
  2. Fill glass with Bourbon, Pear Wine, and Hard Apple Cider
  3. Give it a stir and enjoy!

Don’t forget to eat those tasty pears once your drink is gone!

Pear and Apple Cider Sangria // A Well Crafted Party

About Shilling Oak Aged Cider: The hard cider is finished in 100% NW Oak. It has a smokey cinnamon flavor profile with clove and vanilla. It would be considered a semi-dry cider. There is a bit of the apple taste still there, but not nearly as sweet as some ciders.

About Bull Run Pear Wine: The Bull Run Pear wine is from Oregon! It is a sweet ice wine.  I’d say this is a nice sweet, smooth dessert wine without the punch of a brandy. Loved it.

Halloween Parties of the Past

Looking back at Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

My favorite time of year is quickly approaching. Besides obsessively checking Brooklyn Limestone to see what Stephanie’s Halloween theme will be this year, I’m busy planning my own annual Halloween party. I’ve even got some Halloween posts up my sleeve for BEFORE the big day this year! I might have already thrown a small Halloween get-together over Labor Day weekend just so I could have some fun goodies for you.

Before I get to the new Halloween goodness (which will begin in October) I wanted to share a few of my favorites from the past few years. I’ve thrown a Halloween party each year since 2008. It has been the highlight of my year nearly every year. (The birth of my son pushed Halloween 2011 to second place, but it sure was close since I had a cute little baby to dress up as well as a fun party!)

2008— Haunted Halloween Dinner Party

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

2009— Bewitching Ball

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

2010— Mad Tea Party

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

2011— Costumes & Cocktails

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

2012— Traditional Black & Orange

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

2013— Fairytale Dinner Party

Halloween Parties of the Past // A Well Crafted Party

This year we are going a little bit more pop-culture with our theme. I’m actually having a bit of a hard time trying to figure out all in the little details for the party. But, I’ll be sure to give some hints closer to the big day. Look forward to lots of fresh Halloween posts this upcoming October. I’ve got a Fang-tastic party with great DIY details and free printables that I can’t wait to share! And, as October approaches, I’m going to be going back through some of my old parties to share some DIY details that never made it into the posts above!

 

 

What I’m Loving: Smart Camping Gear

What I'm Loving: Really Cool Camp Gear from A Well Crafted Party

Over 8 years ago I married my husband and we went on our very first camping trip as a married couple for our honeymoon. It has always been one of my favorite things to do with my husband, friends, and family. My son’s first camping trip was when he was 6 weeks old, but we then got out of the habit of stealing away to the woods for a weekend because life happened. This year I promised myself that we’d make time for trips like this instead of looking back at another Summer of missed opportunities due to busy schedules.

I’m so glad that I made that commitment. The past two weekends I’ve enjoyed some real quality time with my family, friends, and good ole’ Mother Nature. I came back to the real world with posts about a delicious summer sipping cocktail perfect for camping and a tutorial on how to make fire roasted corn on the cob.


Smart Camping Gear that is also Really Cool!

While I love a good rustic campground, I also know that there are a few items that are just awesome to have while camping. Here are some of my favorites and some items that are on my wish list for future camping trips.

Camping Wish List via A Well Crafted Party

(Please note that many of the below links are affiliate links. Purchases made from these links helps to support this blog and keep fresh content coming your way. Thank you for your support!)

  1. Ozark Trail Hobo Tool – 7-in-1 This has been my favorite camping tool hands down! It is a knife, spoon, fork, can opener, bottle opener, and corkscrew all-in-one! The tool folds all up together, but can also detach so that you have a knife and fork usable at the same time!
  2. GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Dualist Wish list item big time! My friends had this when we were camping and it was amazing! The set had a pot, two bowls, to cups, and two forks that all fit into each other. The pot helped water boil SUPER fast on a little camp stove.
  3. Therm-A-Rest NeoAir Trekker Air Mattress, Pistachio, Regular While I love camping and I love camping in a tent… but, I’m getting older and I need a little cushion. I love that this air mattress is compact and doesn’t need a big pump to air it up. But, if I’m gonna be completely honest with you… I really want the Coleman Double-High Quickbed because would be like sleeping on a real bed in the middle of the woods!
  4. ReVIVE Rugged Camping Charger & 5000mAh Solar Battery Pack for Charging at the Beach, Lake, Forest, Desert, and more – Includes Cleaning Brush While I tell myself that I am going to unplug when camping… I still want to have my iPhone camera. This charger would save me when my palms start to get sweaty from being disconnected for too long! (I joke. Sorta.)
  5. Sol Republic’s Motorola Deck Speaker  Speaking of things that need charging… I was recently sent this amazing little speaker (smaller than a breadbox) that can be charged up and used nearly anywhere. It connects to phones/ipods wirelessly and up to 5 people can play DJ by highjacking the link. It is so cool and has great sound. The first thing I thought of when playing around with it was how great it would be for our next camping trip.

That is my current gear list… though, I know I’m missing quite a few items.

Know of another camping item you can’t live without or is on your current wish list? Comment with a link below!

Fire Roasted Corn on the Cob with Amaize Corn

Disclaimer: I was offered compensation for my work on this post about Amaize Sweet Corn. The below idea for how to cook and eat Amaize is my own. All opinions are my own. Thank you for reading, sharing, commenting, and interacting with sponsored posts on my page. This helps support this blog and keeps original content coming your way!


Fire Roasted Corn from A Well Crafted Party

Little known fact about me… I went to high school in the middle of a corn field. My senior shirt had a caricature of my entire class (all 40 or so of us) in the middle of corn with the caption “Children of the Corn!” Besides being a little bit creepy… it was great growing up with farms all around us! I was raised on tasty corn on the cob, creamed corn, sweet corn, pop corn and the likes. While I don’t eat as much corn as I used to, I do like to dress up salads, garnish tacos, or just eat a perfectly cooked corn-on-the-cob in the hot summer months.

When I received a box of Amaize, a sweet corn, right before heading out camping I knew that I wanted to try roasting it over a fire. Pretty much everything tastes better over a fire while camping. But, I gotta say, cooking over a fire isn’t always the easiest! The heat is constantly changing, you have to make sure your food doesn’t catch on fire, and you have to sometimes deal with smoke. These corn on the cobs were SO worth it though!

How to Make Fire Roasted Corn

Ingredients:

  • Corn with husks (I used the Amaize Sweet Corn)
  • Contained fire with grill grates positioned above it. (Tip: Make sure the fire is burning completely and fairly consistently. I usually wait until some of my wood looks more like charcoal before throwing down some food on the grill.)
  • Tongs
  • Sharp Knife & Cutting Board
  • Butter & Seasonings of Choice (I used salt, pepper, and an italian seasoning blend)

Fire Roasted Corn a How To from A Well Crafted Party

amaize-fire-roasted-corn-cutcorn

Fire Roasted Corn from A Well Crafted Party

Directions:

  1. After your fire is burning fairly consistently (not huge flames!) put down the corn husk and all on a grill grate above the flames. That is right… you don’t need to peel back the husks, don’t need to de-silk the corn, and you don’t need to wrap it in anything. Bonus, if you accidentally drop an ear in the dust it won’t matter because it is protected by a husk! Don’t worry if your husks are getting a little singed. Your corn will still be great unless the husks begin to come off completely.
  2. Roast for approximately 1 hour— rotating your corn every 10 to 15 minutes. This is absolutely not precise! Fire burns at different temps depending on a lot of different factors. Test the corn by squeezing with your tongs or sticking a fork in them. If it feels like there is some give or juice comes out then it is a safe bet that they are done. When I feel like the corn is done I typically pull one out and cut it up to test. If it isn’t quite done then you can always wrap the corn in foil and cook it a little longer.
  3. Using tongs, put a corn on the cob on your cutting board. Slice off the back end of your corn.
  4. Then, holding the corn husk firmly at the top of the corn, squeeze the corn out of the husk. (Saw this little corn trick via Instructables using microwaved corn. It totally works on roasted corn as well! Changed my life.)
  5. Doctor your corn with butter and seasonings… enjoy!

Fire Roasted Corn from A Well Crafted Party

 

More About Amaize Sweet Corn:

  • Amaize Sweet Corn was created using traditional, natural breeding methods through hybridization meaning this corn is never genetically modified. (Non-GMO)
  • The corn is sweet and crunchy… it didn’t get gross and mushy after cooking!
  • The corn had a 22 year development period. Seriously, so cool to think about how many different variations and flavors were created to get to this sweet and crunchy corn.
  • Amaize is available from June to September and is currently being sold for a limited time exclusively in Portland at New Seasons Market.
  • Follow along on their Facebook page to learn more!

PS. Please be careful of fires this time of year and pay attention to your local burning laws!

What do you like cooking over a camp fire?

Saturday Spirits: Spiked Arnold Palmer (Perfect Camping Beverage)

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One of my hands down favorite things to do in the summer months is going camping. I love being outdoors, the way the stars look when away from the city, and anything and everything cooked over a campfire. This last weekend (and this weekend actually) we got away from it all and headed out to the wilderness to camp.

While I enjoy a good beer next to the campfire… Sometimes it’s nice to have something a little different. I wanted a refreshing cocktail that would be the perfect thing to drink after a long hike when settling in to enjoy the campfire for the evening.

This drink did the trick and it’s SUPER simple to make and take on your next camping trip, outdoor party, or picnic.

Bourbon Arnold Palmer

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 oz Bourbon ( I used one of my favorites- Buffalo Trace)
  • 3 oz lemonade
  • 3 oz iced black tea
  • ice
  • lemon wedge for a squeeze and for garnish
  • Directions:
    Pour all ingredients over ice, pouring bourbon last, squeeze 1 lemon slice in, drop over top, and enjoy!

    Sunday Snapshots: Movies in the Park

    Movies in the Park in Portland, OR // Review from A Well Crafted Party

    Movies in the Park in Portland, OR // Review from A Well Crafted Party

    This was a tough week that I’m not quite ready to go into about on here… But, on Friday night the family (including my wonderful in-laws who are in town visiting) visited a local park for Movies in the Park. It was absolutely the most perfect ending to a very long week.

    I had read a little about movies in the park program and knew we’d go to a park, picnic in tow, and see a little live music and a movie. We picked a local park playing the movie Frozen. It was all of that, but so much more! I was impressed by what the City of Portland and the local sponsors put together for a free evening of entertainment.

    Quick recap of our Movies in the Park experience for memory-sake and just in case you want to check out some of these companies/entertainment options for yourself:

    • Pre-show entertainment was done by The Danny Black  and  The Sale. Both bands were great! The Danny Black one-mad band had me cracking up with fun new lyrics put against a background of familiar music and sung by a really strong male voice. The Sale had all the kiddos out front dancing!
    • Free popcorn was being handed out by local cheerleaders. Kiddo loved this and being able to do a little craft with a cheerleader.
    • Several companies were raffling off the opportunity to win some pretty awesome prize. I won a gift certificate and bag of coffee from Mojo Cafe and Drive Thru out on SE Powell. How cool is that!?
    • Movie didn’t start til dusk (understandably) so it made for a late night. Several smart families brought their kiddos in pjs.
    • One incredibly smart momma (or dad) decided to throw a Frozen themed birthday party at the park! They brought blankets, frozen balloons, and treats. The entertainment was taken care of for them!
    • We brought a blanket and picnic. Next time I’ll worry less about the food (there were three food carts in attendance and a popsicle vendor!) and more about cushion. My old rear can’t handle 4+hours on hard ground. Next time some pillows and maybe low camp chairs will attend as well.
    • I really, really want to go see The Little Mermaid at Mt. Scott Park on August 29. Who is with me?

    This isn’t a sponsored post. I was just throughly impressed by the offerings of the Movies in the Park program and the Summer Free For All programs in general. I hope to attend more this summer!

    Movies in the Park in Portland, OR // Review from A Well Crafted Party

    Movies in the Park in Portland, OR // Review from A Well Crafted Party

     

    Curvy Girl Style: Sun Safe Fashion with Summer Skin Pt. 1

    7 Days of Sun Safe Style with Summer Skin // A Well Crafted Party

    Right after my skin cancer diagnosis I had the opportunity to meet the owner and creator of the sun safe fashion line SummerSkin. Summer Kramer (yep, that is her name!) is seriously such an inspirational powerhouse of a woman that has really made a beautiful brand of clothing that can also help protect you. I was fortunate enough to be able to sample one of her creations— the Endless Summer Scarf. The Endless Summer Scarf is just too much fun because it can be worn so many different ways. I got the scarf the week before my surgery and had fun creating 7 Different Days of SummerSkin Style for my Instagram feed. Over the next couple of Curvy Girl Style posts I’ll be sharing some of my favorite outfits from that week! Check out all the styles I did by looking up #mysummerskin on Instagram!

    So, my first favorite is actually the first outfit I put together. It is perfect for an easy summer day at the beach. Casual, cool, but still protected!

    Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

    Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

    Summer Casual Outfit with SummerSkin // A Well Crafted Party

    Outfit details: Hat —Target // White T-Shirt —Target // Bracelets: 1 home made from old shoe straps and the red leather braided bracelet is a favorite from Flourish Leather // Shoes— Payless // Boyfriend Jeans— Old Navy // Scarf: Endless Summer Scarf from SummerSkin in White

    Saturday Spirits: Spiked Ice Cream Recipes (No Ice Cream Maker Needed!)

    Spiked Ice Cream Recipes (without an icecream maker!) // A Well Crafted Party

     

    Happy Saturday Spirits! It is getting HOT HOT HOT outside which makes this a very fun recipe for a hot summer evening. These Spiked Ice Cream recipes are easy to make at home without the use of any fancy ice cream makers or tools. I used a food processor for mine… but, they can just as easily be made with a hand blender or by mixing with big spoon.

    These are fairly light on the alcohol over all. But, they should definitely be served to those legal to drink only.

    These recipes aren’t super precise since they are not from scratch recipes, but rather are using some premade items. When I say a carton it may be slightly different than your size of carton. I do write how big of a carton I used. But, please get creative with these items and taste test along the way! (That is most the fun anyways!)

    Mango & Bitters Cocktail Sorbet

    Supplies: (Some of the below links are affiliate links. Purchases from affiliate links help suppport this blog)

    • Approximately 1 carton of your favorite Mango Sorbet (I used Trader Joes Mango Sorbet which is 33.81 oz)
    • 10 Shakes of Bitters
    • 3 oz Vodka
    • Mint (for Garnish)
    • Food Processor (or hand mixer or big wooden spoon with large mixing bowl)
    • Ice cream containers (you can use the original container if you’d like, or pretty containers for parties! Portland locals can pick up ones like those photographed at Fancy That Shop in Orenco Station! )

    Directions:

    1. Let your mango sorbet soften on the counter for a bit. You should be able to easily scoop out the sorbet.
    2. Scoop the sorbet into your food processor or into a large mixing bowl
    3. Add in the 10 shakes of bitters and 3 oz vodka
    4. Mix like crazy. Make sure everything is incorporated.
    5. Fill your ice cream container with the sorbet and then place back into freezer. It should firm up after an hour or two and be ready to fill ice cream bowls!

    Raspberries & Cream Spiked Ice Cream

    Supplies: (Some of the below links are affiliate links. Purchases from affiliate links help suppport this blog)

    • 1 carton of your favorite Raspberry Sorbet or Gelato (I used the Raspberry Sorbet from Trader Joes which is 1 pint)
    • 1/2 carton of your favorite Vanilla Ice Cream (I used Trader Joes  French Vanilla which is 1/2 a gallon)
    • 3 oz Raspberry Vodka
    • Food Processor (or hand mixer or big wooden spoon with large mixing bowl)
    • Ice cream containers (you can use the original container if you’d like, or pretty containers for parties! Portland locals can pick up ones like those photographed at Fancy That Shop in Orenco Station! )

    Directions:

    1. Let your Raspberry Sorbet (or gelato) and Vanilla Ice Cream soften up on the counter for a bit.
    2. Scoop the sorbet into your food processor or into a large mixing bowl
    3. Add in the 3 oz of Rasberry Vodka
    4. Mix like crazy. Make sure everything is incorporated.
    5. Fill your ice cream container half way with  the sorbet mixture. Then spoon in vanilla ice cream and swirl around with your spoon. You can mix everything together if you’d prefer, or you can leave it a little unincorporated for a swirl-like dessert.

    Raspberries & Limoncella Sorbet

    Supplies: (Some of the below links are affiliate links. Purchases from affiliate links help suppport this blog)

    • 1 carton of your favorite Raspberry Sorbet or Gelato (I used the Raspberry Sorbet from Trader Joes which is 1 pint)
    • 1 carton of your favorite Lemon Sorbet or Gelato (I used Cioa Bella Lemon Zest Sorbet 14 oz)
    • 3 oz Limoncello
    • Food Processor (or hand mixer or big wooden spoon with large mixing bowl)
    • Ice cream containers (you can use the original container if you’d like, or pretty containers for parties! Portland locals can pick up ones like those photographed at Fancy That Shop in Orenco Station! )

    Directions:

    1. Let your Raspberry Sorbet (or gelato) and Lemon Sorbet soften up on the counter for a bit.
    2. Scoop the Lemon Sorbet into your food processor or into a large mixing bowl
    3. Add in the 3 oz Limoncello
    4. Mix like crazy. Make sure everything is incorporated.
    5. Fill your ice cream container half way with  the Limoncello & Lemon sorbet mixture. Then spoon in Raspberry Sorbet and swirl around with your spoon. You can mix everything together if you’d prefer, or you can leave it a little unincorporated for a swirl-like dessert.

     

    What do you think? Will you be spiking some of your ice cream desserts?

     

    Summer Bucket List

    Summer Bucket List Ideas

    Tomorrow, June 21, is the official first day of Summer! While some parts of the country are probably already HOT, HOT, HOT… it still feels like the late Spring here in Portland. The sun is beginning to come out and I’m sure we are well on the way to enjoying a gorgeous Summer season. I’ve been daydreaming about my Summer bucket list and wanted to share a few of my Summer To Dos for 2014.

    My Summer Bucket List: For The  Home

    • Paint! I’ve got about 8 pieces of furniture that I’ve been meaning to paint. The thing is… we use this furniture already and can’t go several weeks without it while it cures in our garage. Thankfully, the warm days of Summer will help speed the curing process along! Look out for some “A Well Crafted Home” updates this summer.
    • Clean up our yard. We rent so our yard hasn’t really been a priority other than making sure it looks reasonably maintained. We’ve decided to stay in our rental for a while longer though and want to spruce up the yard a bit. I can’t wait to share the details of our upcoming porch re-vamp!

    My Summer Bucket List: Foods

    • Homemade Spiked Ice Creams! Okay, so… technically I’ve already checked this one off the bucket list. I’ve really been wanting to make my own ice creams, especially some fun adult concoctions. I bought a Hamilton Beach Ice Cream Maker to test out a few recipes. This past weekend I created a few different cocktail inspired pints for my hubby’s birthday party. (See photo above! Those cute little ice cream containers came from online and Portland area party shop Fancy That!) I hope to perfect a few of the recipes and get them blog ready soon. They were super tasty and a big hit at the party!
    • Grill Often. I pretty much like to grill all Summer long. I love our George Foreman Indoor/Outdoor Grill
      for frequent use. But, I really want to buy a new grill this Summer that will allow for more food on the grill at one time and cooks with FIRE instead of electricity. What do you suggest…. charcoal or gas?
    • Enjoy more food from our garden. Last year was our first year to have a garden. This year we are seeing a LOT more of the vegetables that we love. So much so that it has been difficult to harvest and eat it all. I’m looking forward to a full Summer of garden-fresh vegetables.

    My Summer Bucket List: Outings

    • Coast. I must go to the Oregon coast… we try to go at least once a season. This Summer we are planning a couple of different trips out with visiting friends and family.
    • Camping. Camping is one of my favorite things to do during the Summer. We haven’t had the opportunity to go camping for over two years and I’m itching to get out again. We have visitors most of this Summer… but, we are hoping to get out at least once.

    My Summer Bucket List: The Blog

    • Consistent Posting. I’ve been terrible at consistently posting since I’ve began working full time. I’ve been at my job for over 7 months now… it is time to get back in the swing of things. I love writing and creating for this space and want to make it a priority. I’ve got some posts lined up for the next couple of weeks that will hopefully get me back on track!
    • Redesign? I’d love to freshen up the site with a redesign… but, we will see about this one!

    My Summer Bucket List: Teaching

    • Teach a DIY party class! This one I’ll be checking off my list next weekend. West Elm has asked me to teach a small Make & Meet class at their Portland location. I was thrilled to say yes as it is one of my goals to get out and teach more. I’ll be sharing some DIY crafts to help make a 4th of July Party that pops! Check out the West Elm Facebook for more information. 
    • Online courses. I’m working hard on creating some online courses. I hope to be bringing these to the website at the end of the Summer!

    What is on your Summer Bucket List?

    Free Spring Printable

    Free Spring Printable from A Well Crafted Party

    This weekend, as I was enjoying the beautiful weather here in Oregon, it finally hit me…. IT’S SPRING! There is just something so restorative and exciting about Spring. After a nice relaxing weekend, I decided I needed to have something in my home that celebrated this season. So, I created a little printable from one of my favorite flower images.

    If you so happen to like it and want to celebrate Spring a little in your own home then feel free to download my free printable. Order your print through your favorite photo store or use an online store such as Mpix.com or shutterfly.com.

    Happy Spring!

    Free Spring Printable Directions:

    Click to Open Your Download. Once open, right click and save* to your desktop!

    Free Spring Printable from A Well Crafted Party

    8X10 Portrait

    Free Personal Use Only Spring Printable

    8X10 Landscape

    *Please remember that these are made for personal use only. Feel free to save, print, use in your home, or give as a gift. Please do not sell, post the downloads on your own site, or distribute. Thank you!

    If you like this post then I’d very much appreciate a SHARE or COMMENT!

    Share this post easily by clicking a social media icon up on the left of the page.

    Winter Beauty: My Winter Beauty Routines

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    Winter is one of my favorite seasons. I love warm drinks and sparkly lights. I love the holiday parties. I love the fashion of Winter—layers, scarves, boots, coats, and tights make me happy.

    But, in the cold of my bathroom on winter mornings and evenings I have absolutely no desire to do my normal beauty routine. I don’t want to take the time to shave, just to step out of my warm shower to chilly air that bristles the hair on my legs all over again. Washing my face at night seems tedious. The call of my cozy bed and layers of blankets seems so much more appealing than taking the time to rub lotion all over me.

    Of course, during the winter I need the extra beauty routines the most, heaters and layers of clothing dry my skin up terribly. By mid-winter I am an itchy mess if I don’t take the time to moisturize. Icy wind chaps my lips in an instant. My face breaks out more than ever due to a combination of holiday eating and dry skin.

    Lately I’ve been trying to simplify my beauty routine so it isn’t such a pain to do during the winter.

    My Morning Winter Beauty Routine

    1. Brush my teeth —Yep, putting it here. Basic hygiene and beauty routine basic numero uno.
    2. Shower — Sometimes, in the dead of winter when I sleep in, I take the toothbrush into the shower and do my teeth brushing routine as I soak. Some think that is gross. I think it is a smart use of valuable sleeping time.
    3. Wash my hair—I’m a weirdo that washes my hair daily. I’ve tried not doing it… but, my hair/body combo is just way too oily. I feel gross and my hair looks a little like a grease spill.
    4. Exfoliate in the shower BEFORE shaving— I don’t do this daily, more like once a week. And, I recently discovered Smooth Naturals Body Scrub and am loving it. The sugar grains are large and chunky so I can feel them over my skin and can easily rinse them off. Sometimes, with smaller grains of sugar, I feel like I don’t know when to stop exfoliating and my skin ends up raw. This particular scrub smells like brown sugar and I love it.
    5. Shave— I am a once-a-day shaver in the Summer months. During the winter I stick with once-a-day for my underarms and go to every-other-day for my legs.
    6. Moisturize—This is my least favorite part of the morning. The air is cold. I want to get dressed and go… but, if I don’t put on some lotion then I feel itchy during the day.
    7. Makeup— My makeup routine is another post entirely. Lets just say that I’ve gotten my routine down to the simplest form it can go without going bare faced every day. When I was younger (pre-kiddo) I always wore eyeliner, eyeshadow, base, blush, mascara, powder, and lipstick or gloss. Now-a-days it is more like a thin base layer to even out skin, a touch of creme blush, mascara, and a swipe of my Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer.

    All of that looks like A LOT. But, really, it all takes about 15 minutes max. If I choose to blow dry my hair (some days I let it air dry) then I add another 8 or so minutes to the routine.

    My Day Time Beauty Routine

    I don’t have time to do a lot of beauty maintenance during the day. But, there are a few items I carry in my purse in case of touch-ups and such.

    1. Lip Balm— Smooth Naturals sent me their Smooth Lips Balm and I have been keeping it in my purse for daily moisturizing. The balm is good, exactly what you want in a balm. The thing I love about it though is the fact that the large tube (much larger than a normal tube of balm) is never lost in my purse. I can easily reach in and pull it out in a hurry. And, if you’ve seen my purse, you know that is a feat.
    2. Lip Color— I switch up my lip color all the time. Currently my purse is holding three different Burts Bee’s lip colors (a gloss and two Lip Shimmers) as well as my favorite lipstick.
    3. Floss
    4. Face Wipes— Sometimes the heater is on too much and I sweat, or my makeup feels grimy, or I eat something and want to wash my hands on the fly. I’ve been addicted to my Puffs Fresh Faces since I received them over the Summer. I’ve bought extras for my purse, desk at work, and gym bag.
    Burts Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser

    Burts Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser

    My Evening Winter Beauty Routine

    1. Brush my teeth– Yep, again. ;-)
    2. Wash my face— When I was a pimply faced teen I washed my face daily with all kinds of harsh cleansers. Then, in adulthood, I found that actually just rinsing my face in the evening did wonders for my skin so I threw out facial cleansers all together. However, as I age, I’ve found that my skin is breaking out more often and that a good facial cleanser is needed again. I tried the medicated cleansers and ended up with incredibly dry, flaky skin. Now I use Burt’s Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser and have liked the results thus far. (I’ve been using it for about three months now.) The soap doesn’t feel sticky (though, it is a little gooey) and doesn’t leave a residue. I recommend it to my friends looking for less harsh alternatives to the normal, everyday face wash. Though, I also warn them, it doesn’t foam up at all. It took me a little getting used to!
    3. SLEEP — Or, at least I try.

    Other than the items listed below I try my best to exercise, eat a nutritious diet, drink water, and take vitamins. I’m not the best at keeping up good habits unfortunately. But, I always go back to them.

    What is your Winter beauty routine?

     

    Featured: Fancy Fall Figs on Live the Fancy Life

    Fancy Fig Recipe by A Well Crafted Party and Featured on Live the Fancy Life

     

    The Fallen For You Printables that I created for a Live the Fancy Life guest post needed a delicious appetizer to really set off the table. Bonus, it served as a sweet and simple date for me and my hubby. These roasted figs are stuffed with a creamy goat cheese, drizzled with a peppered honey syrup, and garnished with sliced almonds. They paired beautifully with a crisp, dry sparkling wine.

    Hop on over to Live the Fancy Life to get the recipe for this great early Fall appetizer!

    Featured: Date Night Printables at Live the Fancy Life

    Date Night Printables

     

    Fall Date Night Printables

    Want to amp up your date night with a few free printables? I created a set of “Fallen for You” printables for a post featured on Live the Fancy Life that is live today. Jump on over to check out the printable set and keep tuned in this week for a coordinating invitation and a recipe for the figs pictured in the post.

    UPDATE: Check out the recipe for Fancy Fall Figs over on Live the Fancy Life!

    Came here from Live the Fancy Life? Yay! Welcome. Follow along via Twitter 
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    A few of the giveaways from giveaway week are still live. Hop on over to see what you can win! UPDATE: Giveaway Week is now over. Look forward to future giveaways!

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