Sunday, November 23, 2014

Turkey Cupcakes

Perfect for Thanksgiving!

These cupcakes are pretty easy to make and they'll be a hit on Thanksgiving! I ran across this recipe originally on the Betty Crocker website, which even provides a video tutorial on how to make the turkey design.

I tweeked the recipe a little. First of all I much prefer homemade frosting compared to store bought. You have much more control over the consistency of the frosting.

I have 2 Buttercream Frosting recipes I live by, that I found on Savory Sweet Life:

These frosting recipes are simple, even for a beginner, and best of all the recipe doesn't call for eggs, so no salmonella poisoning ;) I started making this frosting about a year ago and rarely use store bought any more.

I used Wiltons tip #199 to pipe my frosting on in circles until I covered the entire top, then piped a big plop of icing for the head. I used cupcake gems/pearls for the eyes. 

I did try and use some store bought frosting for the turkey's head, at first. I had orange frosting and thought it'd look really cute to have the turkey heads in orange and make it more colorful. However those 3 turkeys look slaughtered lol. The frosting ran and dripped down the cupcakes, even though I put the frosting in the fridge to stiffen it up prior to piping it on. Homemade is just better, specifically for this reason. But you could always make the Classic Vanilla Buttecream frosting and add Wiltons orange food coloring.

The kids will certainly enjoy helping to create the turkeys, so make it a family event as we did!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Headboard Makeover

Well, for those that don't know, after all that hard work on the twin bed for my daughter's tween zebra room we decided it was time to upgrade her to a larger bed. Next thing I know we bought her a queen size bed on sale around Labor Day. I learned afterwards from a friend - "uh yeah that's when all mattress stores have their biggest sale." Well I guess I'm a bit sheltered lol. If you're reading this, you know who you are and thanks for the tips about the linen sale in January haha. (I need to get out more)

So, new queen size mattress and no bed. Great. I bought the universal frame - easy enough - and remembered I have a queen size headboard that I had been trying to sell and could not give it away. Why? Because it's ugly and probably from 1985. This headboard came with my husband. I've always hated this headboard because it's so outdated. Guess there's a reason it never left my house lol.

This was a simple enough makeover. I had already chosen the black paint for the furniture pieces in her room (see her Tween Zebra Room colors here). I went with Valspar Satin Signature paint in shade New Black.

I added Floetrol to the paint (as directed on bottle) to reduce visible brush strokes. See these seriously awesome paint tips from Classy Clutter. 

I lightly sanded the headboard so the paint would adhere well and applied two coats of paint. I protected the new finish with a coat of polyacrylic.

Once I have all her zebra bedding I will update this post with a photo and her room reveal!

I think this really came out well and she absolutely loves her new headboard! The shelves are already lined with Beanie Boos and books!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Festive Fall Mantel

I love looking at all the beautifully decorated mantels on Pinterest and ever since my fireplace makeover, I can't help but decorate seasonally! This is my first attempt at decorating for fall. I do not have a budget for Pier 1 decorations (unless it's 90% off) so I do my best to be creative with what I can buy (or make). The only fall decoration I owned prior to this was my poor little "broke neck turkey" I got on clearance one year at a grocery store of all places haha. My turkey has a broken neck, thanks to young children lol, but as long as I prop him the right way his head stays upright lol.

I accumulated my fall decor from The Dollar Tree, Michael's and Lowes - on sale or clearance. Is there any other way? Also I picked up the basket of over sized fruit for $5 at a yard sale. My husband thinks my fruit is ugly, and I guess it kind of is, considering it's not sized proportionally to real fruit but hey it was $5. Maybe I'll sell the fruit and put something else there.

My son really fell in love with this piece from Michael's. I can't remember the exact price (around $14.99), but I told him no, maybe later when it goes on sale. Turns out it was already on sale, which he realized and I didn't. I must be doing something right if a 7 year old knows a good deal when he sees one! This lovely piece was 60% off and how can you say no to a little boy's sad eyes AND 60% off? I must say he has great taste. Go mom.

I used a 50% off coupon at Michael's as well to purchase fall leaves garland. Why pay $7.99? 
Most of the other decorations came from The Dollar Tree, like these cute little pumpkins. It just adds something extra. 

My most recent purchase was my beautiful fall wreath! I got lucky on this one. You can too if you start looking as they are changing out fall decorations to Christmas. I buy allllll my Christmas supplies AFTERwards at 50%-75% off. Then I'm ready to go the following year. Oh back to my wreath! I was strolling along at Lowes and there it was, alone with no home. Price tag $21.99. Hmmm I don't think so. I checked anyway since it was the last one. Cashier said it was half off, $11. Hmmm no thanks anyway. She walks away as we ring up in the self serve line, comes back and says we can do 50% off the $11. $5.50?! You bet!

Welcome home fall wreath!