The Highly Overrated Valentine’s Day

With or without a beau, I always have a fantastic Valentine’s Day.  It’s just another excuse to make sure you have fun!  Last year, I was taken out for dinner and given a bouquet of roses.  The typical Valentine’s tradition was placed upon me for the first time and I can confidently say that it’s not all that it’s cracked up to be.  Ladies, do yourself a favor and make sure you have a man who can come up with something a little more creative to captivate your attention.  I have a feeling that I’m going to have more fun this year with my 7 year-old friend, Fionna, who I am watching over the weekend.  I have made plans to take her to Lowe’s on Saturday morning for their kid’s workshop, give her a Jamberry manicure, bake cookies, dance around the house, craft a heart puzzle wreath, and to go to see Paddington.  Sometimes it’s freeing (and let’s not forget exhausting) to be a kid again.

Needless to say, I have the house all decorated for our Valentine’s festivities.  Hopefully they will inspire you to get into the spirit.

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I used mini cupcake liners to hold these candlesticks into place.
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I often use cake stands and swatches of fabric to decorate tabletops.
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I keep my Christmas tree up and decorate it with hearts.
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I’m constantly changing the decor on my Hoosier. I got the Hoosier Mama Book of Pie as a Christmas present and now display it on a cookbook holder.

Tonight, I am taking the Valentine’s theme to a party at the VIM thrift shop where I volunteer. We’re hosting a ladies’ night for heart awareness month. We’re having blood pressure checks and giving tips on keeping your heart healthy. We have to have snacks that are a little more health conscious than I would normally make. I whipped up some marshmallow treats made with Cheerios.  I also gave myself a heart friendly manicure with my new Jamberries!

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Cheerio Marshmallow Treats
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Jamberry Manicure
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Cupcakes for Fionna
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Fantastic Frittata for your Valentine

On Saturday, I had some wonderful ladies over for a Valentine’s brunch.  Everyone deserves a Valentine’s Day treat.  I made sure to have a nice tablescape as well as a delicious menu.  I couldn’t have been happier with how it turned out.  I featured chocolate dipped strawberries in the center of the table because nothing says “I appreciate you” like a chocolate.  I created free-form white chocolate hearts out of Wilton candy melts to place intermittently on the tray with the strawberries.  I also made chocolate-dipped Oreos as well.  I placed a heart napkin in the center of each place setting to make the place setting a bit more festive.  I used fabric in the center of the table which is an easy way to create a runner and can often be cheaper than buying a table runner.

IMG_0404For the menu, I made overnight blueberry french toast, scalloped potatoes, and an egg frittata.  This was the first time I made a frittata and I must say it was a success.  I used Ina Garten’s recipe and doctored it up slightly by adding turkey sausage to the original recipe.  You can really put anything you would like into the frittata as long as you keep the egg base the same.  Below I will give you the adapted recipe for Ina’s roasted veggie frittata and then you can alter it as you please.

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Roasted Vegetable Frittata

ingredients

1 small zucchini, 1 red pepper, 1 green pepper, 1 red onion, 1/3 cup olive oil, 2 tsp minced garlic, 12 eggs, 1 cup half and half, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon butter, 1/2 cup grated cheese (swiss, mozzarella, gouda, asiago…really whatever you have on hand will do just fine)

1.  Preheat oven to 425.

2.  Dice the vegetables and place on a sheet pan.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic.  Toss the vegetables around on the tray to make sure the vegetables are evenly coated.  Bake for about 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and turn the oven to 350.

3.  In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, half and half, parmesan, grated cheese, 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper.

4.  In a 10 inch ovenproof saute pan, melt the butter and saute veggies for one minute.  Pour the egg mixture over the veggies and cook for 2 minutes over medium heat.  DO NOT STIR.  Transfer the pan to the oven and bake the frittata for 20 to 30 minutes until it is set in the middle.  You can flip the frittata out of the pan for the table presentation.  It will be brown on the outside but perfectly cooked on the inside.  Enjoy!

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Be Mine This Valentine’s

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The heart garland is available at Pier 1 Imports. At $5.95, it is not worth taking the time to make it yourself.

In an effort to get my beau in the mood for Valentine’s Day, I decided I would decorate the house for when he comes to visit this week.  I know it’s a little early to celebrate, but let’s be honest…shouldn’t everyday be Valentine’s Day.  We should appreciate our other half everyday of the year.  In the past, I have not been quite as eager to give in to the Hallmark holiday but this year I must say I put it in gear.  As I got out my decorations, I was sadly disappointed with the two owl tea towels on which say “Who loves you?” (which was a sad reminder of my singledom last year and I remember wanting to burn it) and a coordinating owl serving platter.  This year I decided I needed to up my Valentine’s game.  I said to myself “Never fear for Pinterest is here!” in my superhero voice.  I’m sure you all find yourself saying that at times.  Anyway this is what I came up with.  I hope you have as much fun playing Cupid as I have!

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I made this garland that you can find on my Valentine’s Day Pin Board. I used pages of Pride and Prejudice and hot glue to make the pinwheels. Then I used scrapbook paper, Mod Podge, and glitter to decorate the pinwheels. I hot glued the finished pinwheels onto ribbon. I adhered marbles on the side you don’t see as weights to make it hang straight. The finished product really makes the mantel look festive.
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These are zipper heart ornaments that I created from inspiration I pulled from Pinterest. Check out my Valentine’s Day Pin Board for this idea and some more I found interesting.
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I got the conversation heart ornaments from Lillian Vernon.
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I used Valentine’s fabric as the tree skirt.
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I used a pink depression cake plate for an updated napkin holder. I simply framed the napkins with glass beads from Pier 1 Imports.
I used a cake stand for the centerpiece of my dining room table.  The glass beads and the candles are from Pier 1 Imports.
I used a cake stand for the centerpiece of my dining room table. The glass beads and the candles are from Pier 1 Imports.
This is an old retro server that I turned into a centerpiece for my coffee table.  I bought the hearts and candle at Pier 1 Imports.  I thought outside the box and bought the candle at 75% off because they were in the Christmas clearance section.  The candle ended up being about $2.50.
This is an old retro server that I turned into a centerpiece for my coffee table. I bought the hearts and candle at Pier 1 Imports. I thought outside the box and bought the candle at 75% off because they were in the Christmas clearance section. The candle ended up being about $2.50.