Thursday, May 21, 2015

Good Friendships Refresh the Soul

Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart,
and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice
Proverbs 27:9
 Getting to spend time with one friend is a treat but gathering many around the table is so special. I love how the Lord brings friends into our lives that refresh our souls. The desire for friendship is something so dear to his heart. Jesus even told his disciples, " I no longer call you servants... I have called you friends..." John 15:15 He was now bringing them in close and allowing them to be a part of the relationship he shared with his father! This is so beautiful and so encouraging he sees your desire for friendship and he knows your longing for true refreshment in your current friendships. He truly does make all things beautiful!

I found this beautiful artwork that brought me so much encouragement here
Setting the table before coming to the table can always make any time spent around the table special.
Giselle spent brunch with us gals and enjoyed the food and the company just as much as we did!
I think she is going to grow up to love brunch too!

The centerpiece was a simple project I have been wanting to try out for so long and it truly turned out great!

We gathered to celebrate life together and enjoy each other's company.
Empty plates but full hearts!

I remember the first time I met Melanie I was a customer at Talbots and she was behind the counter. I had newly moved to Dayton and knew no one. I heard her speaking to another customer about Texas and my ears perked up. I had just moved from Texas and even speaking to someone from Texas would be make my lonely heart happy. Well, the customer was not interested in speaking to me and that did not phase me though because Melanie told me she had a friend that had just moved from Austin back to Dayton. I couldn't believe my ears I had just moved from Austin too! A fellow Austinite in Dayton what a treat! So, Mel introduced me to Marti and now 8 years later we are still friends and every time we get together our souls are refreshed! Another beautiful thing is that our friendships are always multiplying when one of them introduces one of their friends to me it's like we've been friends for a long time! I love when things like that happen!

Thank for taking time out of your busy schedules and spending time around the tables ladies! it was a beautiful morning and truly energized me!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

A Vintage Bridal Tea

         Hello it's so good to be back.
 One of my favorite things in the world is getting people together to celebrate major life events. I want to share with you the latest bridal shower I hosted in honor of my friend Kaitlyn.
Kaitlyn is getting married this upcoming Friday and I couldn't be more thrilled for her!
This invitation turned out so great thanks to the May Designs free Valentine's Phone and Desktop Backgrounds
Here is my sweet friend- isn't she gorgeous?! I am so excited for her
and I pray that her wedding day is just a beautiful as she is; but mostly
I pray that her marriage is blessed and strengthened everyday!
"A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies." Prov. 31:10
The food was just wonderful and gorgeous! My friend Kendra made amazing 
mini sandwiches especially the veggie ones were just heavenly!
We also had a yummy roasted butternut squash soup
 topped with a mini grilled cheese sandwich.  
I kind of followed this recipe for the yummy soup. This beautiful china is probably the only reason this event is considered a vintage tea. I found this china in a local antique store after the former owner passed away at 90 years of age. 

I have to take a break from my first love language- food, to bring you these beauties.
 Flowers are my other love language and I love the sweetness of ranunculus and that I was
able to find some since the bride loves them too!

This jar was a pretty easy project that I created from a pickle jar with some burlap ribbon and crochet ribbon( could also use lace ribbon) and a hot glue gun.  

Now back to food; my friend Donna brought this beautiful salad topped with her famous pickles! I need that recipe! Although, this was a tea the food was more substantial because it was during dinner time and I loved how it all turned out!

The template for this  sweet menu is from here 

Last but not least before talking about dessert, was this beautiful sparkling pink lemonade in mason jars garnished with fruit! I love the color that it added to the table and of course the taste was refreshing and wonderful.
I combined some seltzer water with pink lemonade to make it fizzy yum!
Dessert Time
Two type of teas were served Chai and Earl Grey with a touch of cream.
Do you see those beautiful coasters on the table that match the invitation? I found them here.
 I decided to create an inviting dessert table instead of having a cake.
 The dessert table is full of yummy goodies that are also beautiful.
 Short bread, scones and macaroons are the main desserts accompanied by colorful chocolate candies.

I love this beautiful chandelier picture ( from Michael's) and I bought it for Giselle's room
 but it was a perfect back droop for the dessert table.

Next to the dessert table was this eucalyptus arrangement that created a layered feel to the dessert area. This little wreath was again another easy project with rope a foam wreath, coffee filters and a glue gun!
Last picture of the desserts, I love how the little flower arrangement in a tea cup turned out too. Perfect topper for the dessert centerpiece.

Gift and Blessing Time

My friend Missy put together this beautiful gift basket- it was one of my favorite gifts! It was so beautiful how our group of friends all got her bath stuff ! Slowly but surely her whole house will be outfitted for them! I love how beautifully friend and families rally behind a young couple and help them establish their home and God establishes their marriage.
We each brought our favorite Bible verse to encourage the Bride and had a sweet prayer time for the couple to be strengthened during this time of preparation and to keep their eyes on the one who created and established marriage. The Lord who alone can teach us how to love because he is Love!
My sweet friend Kendra has a way with words of encouragement and I love capturing this moment of the two of them!
The guests also each filled out one of these wed-libs I found on Something Turquoise 
They were so funny! We laughed so hard at how they turned out! The bride took them home to share them with the groom!

At the end everyone received a little goodie bag to fill up from the dessert table. It was sure a sweet time with friends and I am so honored to have gotten the chance to host this time for  Kaitlyn.


Monday, April 20, 2015

The Donut Party cont..

I shared my donut inspiration board earlier and now I bring you the actual Donut party!

It was a fun time putting it all together! The girls painted this cute
old fashioned shop looking awning. They had a blast painting it! I loved how it
turned out- their painting gave it a not so serious look but an antique feel still!
There were tons of donuts and the littles did not lose time getting to them! I loved that Krispy Kreme donuts has these hats for free! the kids loved wearing them as well as some of the adults!
The sweet couple on the left top  square were our guest speakers! Heather and Andy are the leaders of Dayton Chi Alpha. They shared with us from Psalm 34:8- Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. It was a sweet time of encouragement especially for young families. Their experiences were shared in a vulnerable way that led us to connect deeply with them!
As you can see the fun times rolled with the games! The kids loved the games as well as the crafts!
The donut theme is so versatile and fun that I'm sure I will be using it again! I only hope the spread of donuts will always be extensive- because life is too short!
Love. Life. Donuts.
Gracefully Always, Daisy

Thursday, April 9, 2015

A Donut Party inspiration board

Donuts have been on my mind all week! Not a bad thing per say but definitely very tempting!
I have been planning a Donut Party for the girls at my church! the party is this Friday and I am so excited to see how it all comes together!

1. donut memory printable 2. I designed this sign using picmonkey 3.donut balloons! love! 4. love life donuts poster 5.donut flags printable 6. donut craft 7. donut invitation 8. milk bottles inspiration
Just wanted to share with you a bit of inspiration! I created this board using olio board on line it was so cool and easy to do! For even more donut inspiration check out my Donut Party Board on Pinterest! I will update this post with photos of the actual event! You donut want to miss it!

Gracefully Daisy

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Rainy spring days

I love waking up to rain falling and tapping on the windows. It makes my heart flutter and skip a beat at times. 

Another thing that makes my heart happy is fresh flowers. Today I woke up to beautiful fresh flowers by my bed and rolling thunder calling me out of my deep sleep. The soft pelting of the rain was so refreshing and calming. 
So for quiet time today I grabbed cup of tea some macaroons and a magazine! 

Hello again! It has been way too long! We have been busy around these parts! 
In the rainy pictures above you see our new neighborhood, we are enjoying discovering it with the kiddos! Speaking of kiddos they are growing way too fast! 
Here is Sam at the library playing all on his own! Here is Giselle finally excited to get a little bit of warm weather to wear cute girlee clothes- well maybe I'm more excited than she really is! 
I will be posting some fun posts about what I've been up to and a few fun events I'm planning that are coming up! 
Stay tuned...

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Book Review: Noah by Mark Ludy

When I received an invitation from Handlebar Publishing to review Mark Ludy's new book I jumped at the chance. I personally love the story of Noah and I was disappointed at the poor reviews the newly released movie had, that I chose not to watch the movie.

When I first opened the book I was surprised that it was a wordless picture book. Immediately though the pictures drew me in and I could hear the story forming in my mind as I flipped the pages. The pictures also surprised me because they seem much more modern then I normally picture Noah's story. For example, the pages where we see Noah in his house specifically in his study/library type room with with windows and a desk. That is not how I envision Noah's home looked like but something about the depiction in those pictures still stays true to the character of Noah. Even though I never pictured him in a study I can picture him going alone to a place where he could clearly hear what the Lord was telling him. I love the drawings of the ark that he draws based on the dimensions God gives him. 

The lush beauty of the woods an the vibrant colors Mark utilizes totally captivate the imagination. Although, the place I imagined Noah lived in should have been more wild. 
Mark creates a feel of a paradise lost. There is order, growth and life. Everything flourishes there all is vibrant and alive! 

I can see  this book becoming a favorite for my son. He loves books that he can look at for hours finding new things in the pages every time he turns them. The depiction of the animals is great. They look as they would in real life. The different ones illustrated here make us realize it was all the different species of animals not just the easy ones to imagine in the ark. 

This book gives us glimpse into the beauty of an imagination created by God. I love catching glimpses of everyday life for Noah and his family because then we are able to relate with the characters. God's promises are depicted in beautiful illustrations that cause your imagination to soar enraptured in the beauty of a Creator that made this world and is faithful to us even when we are not.


Disclosure: I received a free book in exchange for this review all the thoughts are my own. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Shortbread Love

The cookies were pictured on an apron I made for my friend Marie over at Baking Chic

I remember very well when I fell in love with shortbread.
 At first our encounters were few and far between, a treat for a special occasion.
 Then I realized this could become a normal part of my life. Not only could I buy shortbread but I could bake my own! It did not need to come out of box, which held shortbread that was rarely intact, I usually found more pieces than whole cookies. Because these few encounters turned into a full fledged love  connection, I am on a quest to find and create awesome shortbread. Check out my Pinterest board here. 

These beautiful cookies were inspired during Valentine's Day this year. I know, fall is here and I am just now sharing with you but this year is going too fast and I am barely keeping up! These cookies scream tea time with your favorite girl friends! I used one of my favorite shortbread recipes and just tweaked it a bit to create a soft, buttery, and sweet explosion in your mouth! Believe it or not these shortbread cookies are also great for the fall, with the chai tea spices and the sweetness of the dulce de leche they are perfect for a brisk fall afternoon tea time.

Chai Tea Alfajores 

(Chai Tea Dulce de Leche Sandwich Shortbread Cookies)

Ingredients for the cookies:

2 cups of all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1 cup (2 sticks) of butter at room temp.
1/2 cup of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
2 tea bags of Spiced Chai Tea

Ingredients and Supplies for the Dulce de Leche:

(note: you can also buy a can of Dulce de Leche)
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1 16 oz canning jar with lid. ( you can use smaller ones but I wanted to leave a little space in the jar.)
1 Crock Pot (make sure to choose your jar size based on the size of your crock pot so your lid can close securely.

Directions for the Dulce de Leche:

Make sure to start the dulce de leche either the night before to cook over night or early in the morning. This is to ensure that your dulce de leche will be ready when you are ready to spread it between the cookies. 
open your condensed milk and pour it into the jar or jars. place the jar in the crock pot and fill the crock pot with water just below the rim. Cook the jar or jars for 8-10 hours on low. The longer you cook the it the thicker the milk will become. The glass jars make it easy for you to see how dark the milk is getting. 

Directions for the cookies:

In a bowl whisk the flour and salt. Cut open the tea bags and whisk into the mixture of flour and salt. In the bowl of your mixer beat the butter until creamy (about 1 min.). At this time add the sugar and beat until smooth (about 2 min.). Then beat in the vanilla. Slowly mix in the flour mixture until the dough is mixed well and it turns crumbly. At this time I preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Taking two sheets of wax paper I put the ball of dough in between the two sheets and roll  out the dough flat but a little thick. You can put the flattened dough on a cookie sheet and put in the freezer for about 20 minutes. When I take the cookie dough out of the freezer I cut out the cookies and place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets. Because the dough is slightly frozen it helps the cookies hold their shape better. Bake the cookies for about 8-10 minutes. After I take my cookies out of the oven I let them cool on the cookie sheets which allows them to brown just right without getting over cooked.

After your cookies are cooled and your dulce de leche is ready spread the dulce the leche on a cookie and place another cookie on top creating a dulce de leche sandwich or Alfajores as know in Spain and Latin America. Check out this recipe too.

Now invite your favorite girl friends over for tea or coffee! Or do like I did and take this treat on a girls weekend getaway and make your friends super happy! I hope you enjoy this recipe and let me know if you try it!

Gracefully Daisy