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March 2009

Good Morning Grits

I'm always looking for new breakfast casserole recipes.  They are so easy and tasty and great for serving a crowd.  It's getting to be that time of year where brunch is served frequently.  Easter, wedding and baby showers to name a few.  I don't think I'm going to wait for a special occasion to make this casserole! 

Good Morning Grits


1 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup  chopped onion
1 cup quick-cooking grits, cooked as directed on package
1-1/4 cups  KRAFT 2% Milk Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese, divided
1/2 tsp. salt
2   eggs, lightly beaten

COOK and stir green pepper and onion in nonstick skillet for 5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Place in medium bowl. Add cooked grits, 3/4 cup of the cheese and salt; stir until well blended. Add eggs; mix well.

POUR into greased 8-inch square baking dish; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese.

BAKE at 350°F for 30 minutes or until center is set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

(photo and recipe from


Biggest sale ever over at Hostess Jo!!  EVERYTHING is 15% off now through March 31!  Now you can get one of those darling aprons you've been eyeing ;)

Just enter coupon code: March at checkout.


I need your ideas!

I've got two weeks until the big three person 30th birthday party!  I think I've got all my supplies for the manzanita branch centerpieces I'm making, but I wanted to get your opinions on a couple of things. 

The branches


I went with natural and I'm going to spray paint them white.  There is a lot of brick in the room and I think white will really pop.

The containers?


This is one thing I need your opinion on.  Is this container ok for this?  It is made of paper mache and 10 inches in diameter.  I'm just wondering if it will look ok.  It's not a formal party, but these looked a tad too informal.  What do you think?

The crystals


I also have gold and silver 30s to hang from the branches.  Another question I have is what type of filler to use around the base of the branch?  What would look good with white branches, crystals and gold and silver?  Do you think something like moss or rocks would go?  Or should I use more crystals?  Because the branch is not natural looking being white and shiny, I didn't know if I should use a natural filler.

Thanks so much for your help.  I look forward to hearing your ideas!

Camping Party!

I just had to share this pink camping party with you!  You already know I like to go camping-nothing hardcore, just a getaway in the woods.  You really get to experience true calm and beauty when you are camping.  Anywho, my friend Jamee over at Setting the Mood recently did a post on a Pink Camping Party and I am in love with it!  Just goes to show you can create a party around ANY theme!


I love the pink camo tablecloths and pink plaid thermos vases.  So cool.

Dazzling Discovery: Shamrocks

Did you know you could plant shamrocks?  I didn't, but what a great touch of green (or purple!) to add indoors.  I also didn't know there were different varieties!  How great would these be on your table or sitting around the room for a St. Patrick's Day party?


Here is a link to a video where Martha tells you more about them.  Their history is as interesting as they are pretty!

You can purchase your own bulbs here.  Maybe they will bring you good luck!

Easy Spring Craft

I'm so ready for Spring!  How about you?  Here is an easy wreath to get your home ready for the the season.  I got my original inspiration from my friends at No Fuss Fabulous with their Yarn Wreaths that I absolutely love.  Here are mine and my mom's versions!

Supplies: wreaths, butterflies, bugs, nests and some of the birds from Hobby Lobby (the rest I ordered from a wholesaler).  Ribbon, moss and "Family" from Michaels.  Glue gun and lots of glue!

Grapevine Wreaths

Hostessjo 007 

Various butterflies and bugs.  I used bees and lady bugs.

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Birds and nests.

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Moss and "Family".  I found the "Family" in the scrapbooking section at Michaels.  I was looking for "Welcome" but had no luck.

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The results: Mine

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Hostessjo 004 

Hostessjo 006 

My mom's:

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I am thrilled with how they turned out!  What do you think?  I love my mom's little bird with the nest.  We wrapped them in ribbon first then placed everything where we wanted it then started gluing.  Both only took about an hour and a half.  Be careful, they are very fragile!  Do you decorate your house for the different seasons?  Hope this inspires you to!

Jessie Steele Aprons

I'm excited to let you know about our new retro-chic hostess aprons at Hostess Jo! You may have seen them on "Lipstick Jungle" or "30 Rock". They have also made an appearance in EveryDay with Rachael Ray magazine.
They are not only fun but functional. You can cook and host in them or give them as a housewarming, bridal or hostess gift.

Cherry Cupcakes Apron


Don't forget our coordinating "pot-mitts"; a combo of a pot holder and an oven mitt!


Fresh Idea

We are getting closer to our "Don't Sit Under the Apple Tree..." wedding shower.  I've shown you our ideas for the centerpieces.  Since then, I've found so many great ideas for using green apples in your wedding or shower decor on the web.  Below is another beautiful way to show off your apples.  We are serving Green Apple Martinis and this is perfect!


Isn't this lovely?  You could even use this as the centerpiece.  This would be great for a Spring or Summer party too, it doesn't have to be just for showers.  Get creative, try serving lemonade or limeade this way!  How refreshing...

(photo from

A Wonderful Surprise

I came home from a camping trip this weekend to find this fabulous article about Hostess Jo and Let's Entertain on We Heart This!

March 8, 2009 | By: tyna

Today, we want to give a shout out to Joanna and her site Hostess Jo, a supporter of we heart this. Joanna is a lady after our own heart who turned her love of entertaining (and all the fun of planning events) into her own blog, Let’s Entertain and a retail site, Hostess Jo. Joanna launched Hostess Jo after “planning various get-togethers, parties and events over the years, my friends and I continuously found it difficult to find different and unique items to make our parties more interesting and fun. I wanted to provide items to add something special to our parties without spending a ton of money – hence the development of!”

Hostess Jo promises “items to make any get together special and one-of-a-kind.” Browse through her inventory to see her hand picked specialty items to add that special touch to your next girls night out or book club. Or find unique and affordable gifts for a hostess, birthdays and more.

My favorites include the Paradise Beverage Glasses (pictured above) for easy glass identification after you and your girls work through that first bottle of bubbly. Or add a twist to the standard yummy candle by gifting one of the Entertaining Candles. Each is cutely titled with scents catering to its theme. My favorite is called Lighten up and it contains “essences of winter mint and crisp woodland pine to counteract obsessing on the unimportant” and includes an inspirational saying etched on the glass holder (Because somebody, somewhere has it far crappier than you). Or, if you’re the type to plan ahead, summer (and all her patriotic holidays) is just around the corner. Show your stars and stripes from Memorial Day through Labor Day with this flag themed Chip and Dip Platter.

If you are looking for some new recipes and fresh ides make sure to check out Let’s Entertain, and if you are in need of some cute hosting accessories, look no further than Hostess Jo! And as Joanna reminds us “most importantly though, we want you have fun hosting!” Cheers!

What a wonderful surprise!  I am so flattered by all of the nice, complimentary things Tyna and Stef said about my shop and blog!  Thank you so much ladies!  

If you haven't been to We Heart This, you really should.  I go there to find out about new products, how to's, latest in beauty and fashion, decorating, etc, etc.  Here is a bit about the site: We have lots to say and share: from easy ways to eat, drink and be merry, to effortless beauty and fashion tips, to what you’ll be reading, watching and listening to this month, we cover it all!  You’ll find WHT is an entertaining support network where women shamelessly rave about the stuff they adore and we want you to join in the discussion and become part of the community. We also offer forums where you will find chicks chatting about just about anything. And members can even have their own blogs within the WHT community.

I heart them!