Wednesday, February 29, 2012

New Things

For my birthday I bought myself presents. I do it every year. It's sort of one of my things. I feel like I spend a lot of money on other people and making things happen for them so once a year I try to buy items that I want but normally wouldn't purchase.

This year I went big. My first present to myself was a big one. I bought tickets to Coachella. 

Remember my little sneak peak I gave you at the beginning of February? Well these were the beauties I bought for my Katy Perry photo shoot. Bebe Omega Glitter Wedges, they have the most spectacular shine and their color, the color! I couldn't resist this purchase, unfortunately their design was poor for walking in so they ended up being just for the photo shoot. 

And then I bought these treats at Ulta:
1. My splurge was the LIPPY gloss, normally I would never purchase $17 lip gloss but that's what a birthday does to me. I've been wanting the perfect bright pink lip color for ages and LIPPY nailed it. The color, the texture, the shine... magical. Seriously.
2. Katy Perry's new perfume Meow! The scent attracted me from 3 isles away! An employee had just sprayed a tester, when I found out it was Katy's new fragrance, I knew it was fate. 
3&4. I've been wanting purple polish for ages and as I had an Ulta certificate for a free polish... I couldn't help but pick up the blue polish as well. Hello spring! 

Rocking the new lip gloss today, I paired it with Revlon's 720 Fire & Ice. 
I am in love.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sick Pup

I hate it when my babies are sick! Megatron about broke my heart last night with his sadder than usual look and continual attempts to cuddle on my lap.

Did I mention he about broke my heart with his sickness? I mean seriously. Look at these photos.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Weekend Recap

Continuing the birthday theme: My baby brother's birthday was one week ago today. We are three years and two days apart. Growing up we would always celebrate our birthday together. This year we were planning on going to LA but his travel plans fell through.... hopefully next year! But I still wanted to do something special so this weekend I sent out a care package.

Included were some of his favorite cookies: double chocolate chip using this recipe.

I also decided to try the Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie n’ Oreo Fudge Brownie Bar that's been circulating Pinterest for weeks. My brother Daniel and I braved the weather and walked the pups to the store to grab a few ingredients. We literally experienced rain then snow and when slush started falling from the sky decided to take shelter in Petsmart and buy the pups treats. By the time we left the store (15 minutes later) it was sunny. Honestly, this weather!

While waiting for the oven I spent some quality time with the pups.

Megatron enjoying his new toy:

V having separation anxiety this weekend, trying to have me hold her anytime I was in her sight:

After baking and a ridiculous amount of chores I headed out for the night to celebrate my birthday with my Vancouver friends. We were going to go to Harvey's comedy club but the show was sold out so instead we headed to Le Happy, a creperie on the west side of Portland. Their crepes are amazing. The atmosphere is eclectic and it's very small but if you're in the mood for crepes this is a must stop in Portland. Afterward we went to Shiraz Grill a Mediterranean bar for drinks. The drinks were good and their homemade fries are stellar but our waitress was extremely pushy and put a damper on our experience. We ended our night listening to music and grabbing another drink at Jinx. I couldn't have asked for better company or a more relaxed and hilarious night.

I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend, happy Monday!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Panera and Sun

I took a little study break to treat myself to lunch at Panera. Nothing beats a cold winter day like a hot bowl of soup.

love their broccoli cheddar soup. Slight obsession.

The drive home from the library was beautiful, the calm before the storm.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Birthday Activities

Kells Irish Pub

It is no secret that Kells is by far my favorite pub in Portland and when I found out a few months ago that they have a sister location in Seattle I insisted to Ryan "I have to go on one of my upcoming trips!" He remembered my request and took me there last Friday night. The Seattle Kells is practically nothing like the Portland Kell's but it's still just as amazing. Have you ever had a Washington Apple? It was our beverage of choice for the night.

Tea Time

On my actual day of birth, we spent the entire morning and early afternoon baking a plethora of cupcakes. Mid afternoon rolled around and being up to my elbows in cupcakes (literally), starving and in need of a hairbrush the boys convinced me to put the spatula down and attend tea time. My friends have shared stories about this illusive tea time for ages and last Saturday I finally was able to experience it for myself. Tea time occurs at The Grill on Broadway, the restaurant its self is gorgeous and their $5 sliders and teas are unbelievably good. 

The birthday kids Brad (on my left) and myself with Brandyn, Ryan and Tiffanie. 
Best Seattle hosts.

There was a pre-event going on at The Grill that night, we had to join in on the fun. Naturally.

After dinner we headed to Red Light Vintage & Costume. That place... ridiculous. I could easily spend way too much money in that store.

Movie Time

After our photo shoot (pictures to come!) we headed out to Purr, a bar on Capital Hill. It is our regular bar of choice, not fully recovered from my week of sickness I  ended up sitting at a table observing for most of the night, secretly excited about going back to the apartment for movie time. We watched a number of movies over the weekend but the birthday night movie choice was Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. I had never seen the movie before and I loved it. The awkwardness of the main characters and monologues of Flint the main character kept me laughing again and again. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012


I knew when I chose a Katy Perry birthday theme that cupcakes were a must. I spent every weekend before my birthday playing with recipes and trying out color combinations. I knew I wanted one gigantic cupcake to steal the show and thus had a mini dance party when I found this pan and got it for $18.00 (1/2 off with a Michael's coupon, the only way to buy Wilton):

We ended up making 3 gigantic cupcakes, plus over 50 regular sized cupcakes. 
It was cupcake heaven. 

How to make kick ass multi-colored cupcakes and impress all your friends:

Step 1 - Make Your Batter

Due to the large quantity of cupcakes we went with pre-made cake batter for almost every batch. If you're strapped on time pre-made batter is the way to go. If you have a bit of extra time or you just want to bake something extra special you'll need a white batter recipe. I used this one for the top of THE giant cupcake. (If you use the linked recipe note that using whole eggs does make the batter slightly tinted, add an extra egg white and omit the yolks if you want bright white.) I also used my special Bob's Red Mill Vanilla Cake Mix for the bottom of THE cupcake. Let's face it, Bob's knows their stuff and that cake mix is to-die-for.

Step 2 - Divide and Dye

Divide your batter into 6 equal parts. If you want to make a rainbow cake add a small amount of color to each individual bowl. You should have violet, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. If you want a multi-shade one color cake add a small amount of the same dye to the each bowl, slightly increasing the amount of dye added (see photo below). Note: you can always add more dye but you can't subtract it post mixing. So adding small amounts of dye at a time is key.

Step 3 - Add Your Mix to the Pan

If you are using a regular cupcake pan add liners and then drop the darkest color into the liner, then the next darkest on top of that color and so on. Let each color naturally push the previous color out. If your batter is thick, a gentle miner's shake will do the trick. If you are using the Wilton giant cupcake pan you'll use the same technique for the bottom of the cupcake. For the tops I chose to use an alternative colors entirely, white and pink. 

Step 4 - Bake Your Cupcakes

Follow the time your recipe calls for. Note: If you're using the Wilton pan the top bakes faster than the bottom. Remove the pan when the time that the recipe calls for expires and using a butter knife gently pull the top out of the mold . Then add water to the top side mold and place the pan back in the oven for additional baking time.

Step 5 - Decorate

Give your cupcake(s) plenty of time to cool then do a crumb frosting. A crumb frosting is a super thin layer of frosting covering the cake and allowed to dry. Some suggest throwing the cake in the fridge, I let mine sit on the counter while going to tea. When your crumb layer has finished drying it's time to finish adding layers of frosting. Ryan made our white frosting which I then dyed appropriate Katy Perry color hues.

End result? Perfection:


Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Party planning has always been my thing. I love to plan parties and I think I'm pretty darn good at it. Despite my natural talent to whimsically create I like to find inspiration to help plan my parties. Pinterest couldn't be more of a godsend in this area. I used to search Google for ideas then copy/paste my finds into my e-mail, before that it was magazine clippings and glue on poster boards (ah the good old days). Today I find creative sparks via Pinterest and throw them into a Word document as a flow board.

Pinterest ideas:

Clips converted to inspiration/flow boards:

These magazine-esque pages help me get detailed about my ideas yet make it possible for quick lists of what I will need for the party. 

My first Pinterest birthday find this year was inspired by this balloon wall. I wanted to create a wall made entirely of balloons in the middle of my friend's apartment (the location that we were having the Katy Perry themed photo shoot). But then I remembered that the room was carpeted so I dug a little deeper and found this idea; hanging balloons from the ceiling using a marble to weigh the balloon down. And so on Friday Sean, Ryan and I started the process of blowing up 144 marble filled balloons. We got about half way through before calling it a night.

Brandyn and Brad finished blowing up the balloons Saturday morning. Unfortunately with all the other birthday activities, the boys did not have enough time to hang the balloons from the ceiling (so curious to try that!). Instead they managed to tape every balloon to the wall. Of course, half way through the photo shoot we tore them down for ground photos anyhow (so I guess it worked out in our favor).

Have you ever made a balloon wall? 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Birthday Card

For whatever reason I got a notification in my e-mail today "reminding" me about an e-card from my mom from 02/17/11. I didn't get the first e-mail telling me I had a card... love the internet. Anyway this is the card my mom sent me:

A puppy and shoes, my mother knows me well. I love you mom.