Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Up to: 12/18/07

Mr. Cupcake's Birthday
Birthday kisses, wasabi peanuts, Raspberry Truffle Mousse Cake and plasma TVs (a small one for our room) are what turning 28 is all about!

Needlessly Wanting:
Cricut Expression
While I can't think of a single (valid) business use for this electronic die cutter, I can think of 101 unnecessary ones!

Run's House
Late night channel flipping proved fruitful when I stopped on an episode of Run's House. Now I'm hooked and stalking my mail carrier since I added the previous seasons to my Netflix queue.

Finishing Up:
Last Minute Holiday Orders at The Creative Cupcake
Today was the last day for Priority Shipping and Saturday at noon will be it for Express Overnight in order to make Christmas delivery. It has been a hectic holiday (shopping) season and I am looking forward to a few days of R&R before the family comes to visit on the 26th.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Newsletter: Holiday Shipping & New Gift Boxes

Click newsletter to read the full-size version.
Now, go shopping!!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

I shopped but have not yet dropped

Late last night, I got some rather interesting/potentially life altering news (not to worry... it is largely positive) that may or may not happen in the near future. Kind of complicated so I promised those involved that I wouldn't blog about it now, but I promise to divulge all 3 of you reading this pretty soon.

Anyhow, it came out of nowhere and kind of threw me for a loop and while there is no real fix, I generally recommend treatment for these types of things with a bit of retail therapy. Believe you me, I did not disappoint. Along with a few pairs of jeans, a sweater, new Initials bag (the Sassy Baguette in Vermont / damask print and a turquoise monogram -- so cute!) and some other "little" things, I picked up:

Velvet flats at Old Navy

Pine Cone Hill PJs at Give Simple

Yoga Booty Ballet from Amazon (based on the recommendation of PPP)

I am doing my best to stay away from Etsy. I have no self control and I cannot be trusted near handmade goodies. Tomorrow I have to run some errands, which means a swing by Target. While there is no telling how much damage I will do there, I can only hope that a good Target-fest will get this out of my system once and for all!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Going to the Chapel

Well, we've already been to the chapel... 3 years ago today, to be exact. We had our fair share of disasters that day (I still can't talk about my flowers/florist without getting mad), but at the end of the day we were getting married and that was all that mattered to us.

Take a walk down memory lane with me...

My shoes were my something blue

Being traditionalists, we spent the night before apart and saw each other for the first time during our pictures -- the one above was at Fairmont Park.

You can't tell in this photo, but the bottom hem of my dress was fairly muddy thanks to rain the day before and my brother stepping on my train in an earlier photo. I was too excited to care!

I thought this captured the "real" us... because we often stop to casually lean against building columns! This was in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

We are standing at the top of the Rocky steps at the Art Museum. It's amazing how good we all look after running up a few flights!

The rings & "I do"s.

Broad Street near City Hall - the perfect place for a dip. We couldn't stop laughing because cars kept passing us by to honk and congratulate us, not that we knew any of them.

The ballroom during the cocktail hour (in the balcony).

We went with old-school Sinatra for our first dance - The Way You Look Tonight

The emptiest the dance floor was all night -- our band was phenomenal.

Of course we thought it was the most wonderful night and enjoyed every second. For months afterward, we kept joking that we wanted to have a party every year to celebrate -- if someone else was paying this time!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Up to: Day-After-Thanksgivng

Official Day-After-Thanksgiving Sandwich Recipe

Side 1:
1. Crusty bread (this year it was a slice of French Boule from Central Market)
2. Thin spread of butter
3. Shmear of Maple Sweet Potato Puree
4. Layer of Cornbread Stuffing (or is it technically dressing? I never know...)
5. Light layer of gravy

Side 2:
1. Crusty bread
2. Shmear of cranberry sauce (canned is not only preferred in our house, but mandatory)
3. Layer of Green Bean Casserole (new for our Thanksgiving table this year)
4. Layer of white meat turkey (in our case, chicken)
5. Light layer of gravy

Note: both layers of gravy may be omitted to make room for "The Moist Maker" of Friends fame -- a slice of bread which has been soaked in gravy. This is highly recommended.

Zap in the microwave for 45 seconds and then marry the two halves. Best eaten while standing over the kitchen counter, after returning home from ridiculously early bargain power shopping. Even better when chased with a piece of pumpkin pie.

How do you build your perfect Day-After sandwich?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Giving Thanks

I am thankful that tomorrow will be a cool Thanksgiving here in Dallas. Last year, Thanksgiving Day was in the mid-80s and far too warm for this pair of East Coasters. We couldn't get over how non-"holiday" our mood was because of it. Luckily for us, tomorrow will be much more like what we are used to, with an afternoon high of 51. I might even get to bust out my scarf that I knitted last year. Should I bother pointing out that yesterday we tied the record high at 82-degrees? I will never get used to the crazy Texas temperature swings. They're almost worse than my mood swings (right, hon?)!

This year it will just be Mr. Cupcake and me feasting on all of my Thanksgiving goodies, which I am also thankful for. Not having to worry about the current state of our apartment neatness will always make me grateful. This happening smack in the middle of the busiest time of the year for The Creative Cupcake (when I have no spare time to clean my home to a Martha-accepted level) makes me down right joyous. Plus it means more stuffing for us!

Another one of the things I am thankful for is the Thanksgiving-themed "Helen Keller, The Musical" episode of South Park. Aside from your basic level of hilarity from turning The Miracle Worker into a musical, there is a turkey involved. Kind of like Charlie Brown and his sickly tree... only with poultry.
Producer: What the hell is that?
Cartman: Thats Gobbles. The physically challenged turkey.
So wrong but, yet, so hilariously right.

What funny/quirky things are you thankful for this year?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Pucker up!

I can't explain it, but this photo gave me the giggles this morning. At least Travolta had his good hair plugs in for the occasion. [/smirk]

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

How can this be...

free dating sites

This is particularly funny if you happen to know me in real life... and therefore how truck-driver-ish my vocabulary can be. The only time I think I could have a G-rating is while I'm sleeping (and even then all bets are off). Click on the image to see your own blog rating.

Thanks to Kerry from More, More, More... for the tip!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Hi there... remember me?

I just wanted to take a second and let out a great big sigh of relief. I had a fantastic show last weekend in Southlake and we had a wonderful time in New York City.

Now that I have a small lull in my shows/traveling/general life craziness I hope that I can get back to more timely postings. I miss you all! Plus, it has been no fun watching TV and not being able to comment and discuss the finer points of Dell's infatuation for Naomi (love it!) with those of you reading.

Oh, and I didn't forget about my monogramming news... just working out the last few details. Stay tuned...

Friday, November 02, 2007

Coming soon: Monograms!

For all of our monogramming fans, we are about to bring you something you are going to just love. I'm working out the final details now, but stay tuned for a great announcement next week!

Show Alert: Southlake / Carroll SHS Craft Fair

If you're in the DFW area, stop by and see me this weekend. There will be special shopping perks all day Saturday!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Up to: 10/18/07

Pottery Barn Holiday Catalog
Arrived today and I am loving these ribbon ornaments... never enough ribbons in my decorating!

Celebrity Detox: The Fame Game
Think what you may of Rosie, but I find her to be refreshing in our twisted world of faux-celebu-perfection.

Private Practice
How much do I love that Shonda Rimes created Pete's character to exist in a place so far beyond what his pretty boy looks might predict? And how cute is Dell's crush on Naomi? I still miss her on Grey's.

Traveling to:
New York City
Heading "home" in 3 weeks - first time since the big move. Lots of friends and family to see, and even more pizza and bagels to dive into. I've missed my New York!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Hey there, The Gap

I see you there, checking out my key fobs. Sure, it could be some super cool girl spending 2 minutes looking for a cute way to keep track of her keys. [If if is... Hi!] But I wouldn't be surprised if I stop in The Gap one day and see similar key chains for sale.

Luckily, you bought one before everyone else did -- you trend setter, you!

Friday, October 12, 2007

San Diego: Part Deux

Sailboats along Harbor Drive.

In truth, I never *want* to leave San Diego. Despite my kicking and screaming (which made for an interesting trip through airport security), we made it back to Dallas last night. I'll post more photos ASAP, since none of my little helper elves bothered to come and magically work on my orders while I was gone!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Happy Birthday Eric!

Though it's not something that I talk about often (if at all) here in Cupcakeland, I was adopted when I was a baby. The short version of the story is that it turned out that I had a biological brother (almost a year older than me) who was adopted by another family and grew up several hours away from me. Even though we spent 24 years growing up in very different environments, we found out that we are oddly alike in a very innate, biological way that I partly attribute to being born within a week of each other and thus, both Libras.

Why all this info? Today happens to be his birthday, and since we can't be together this year to celebrate together I sent over an ice cream cake (technically, a picture of mine from last week). I figured with such a crappy (but thoughtful!!!) gift, I could at least throw him a little blog posting. Cheers to a wonderful year, my friend!

I loves me some big brother!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Good reads?

I'm heading back to San Diego for the better part of next week and want to pack my bag full of books since I have absolutely no intentions of doing even a shred of work while I'm there. I already have a copy of Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster, thanks to Alyssa's recommendation. Kitchen Confidential is also waiting for me at the library. Any must-read recommendations from my dear readers? New releases and all time favorites, biographies and fiction, trashy and educational- all are welcome.

Diamonds are a girl's best friend

French headbands in our Brown Diamond pattern - $10-$15

This month we're also introducing a brand new pattern to our line of French Damask Headbands. The Diamond collection come in 3 color combinations: Blue & Pink, Brown & Blue and Green & Pink (of course). Additionally, we've added a blue pattern to our Paisley collection. All of our French collection patterns come in our 3 sizes: Small, Medium & Large (Small not available in Scroll collection). Be sure to check them out!

Child Size Headbands

Preppy headbands in our Nantucket print - $8.50-$12.50

We've carried smaller headbands at our shows the past few months and since they've been a big hit with our customers, we are bringing them to our website's permanent collection too. In the past, young girls would wear our medium size and the tips would fall past their ears and irritate the whole area. Just as great as our standard comfort inserts, the newer size is about an inch shorter all around, making them perfect for toddlers and smaller children. You can find them in our newly redesigned Headband Page in the Preppy, French and Velvet styles.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Another year older

In the grand scheme of things, I don't mind getting older. I am not one of those people who would relive my high school experience or want to stay in college forever; I definitely came into my own after those times were behind me.

I do realize that in the grand scheme of life, I am fairly young. In fact, that has always been my "thing" -- being the Young One. In my former career, I was a good 10-30 years younger than my clients and those we worked with. Among our post-college friends, I have always been the Young One. Ironically, I've always joked that I was 22-going-on-45 since I act like anything but the Young One. I can't help but feel that I blinked and suddenly find myself in my [gulp] late 20's.

This Saturday was spent in celebration of the 2nd Anniversary of My 25th Birthday. Thanks to a surprise refund from Uncle Sam that arrived on Wednesday (the government, not my actual uncle Sam) I was able to get the gift that I wanted but never thought we could actually afford right now. As if that wasn't good enough, we scored some of the most delicious Chocolate Cherry Bread from Central Market which served as the tastiest Birthday Breakfast I've had in a long time. Mr. Cupcake started the day off in one of my favorite ways -- with a schedule! In a mockery of my daily "To Do" lists, he created a schedule of the day's activities, including notated comments. There was lots of relaxing, eating the yummiest of my favorite foods and the dorkiest rendition of "Happy Birthday" via text/photo/voice message from my brother Eric.

What Mr. Cupcake's cake lacked in size, it made up in thoughtfulness.

Not a complaint to be had and it certainly beats the pants off my past few birthdays:
  • Age 25 - Spent 3 days babysitting for Mr. Cupcake's supervisor's 2 small children while they were on a business trip. There were diapers. There were temper tantrums. Plus, they acted up so badly in my car that I ran a stop sign and got pulled over [no ticket -- out of the sheer pity the cop must have had for me] at 7:30am. There was not a lot of sleep nor fun for the Birthday Girl that year.
  • Age 26 - Mr. Cupcake was working and I spent the day largely by myself, save for an embarrassing lunch with my friend Aimee involving a sombrero and an ice cream potato. Even afternoon tea at the Metropolitan Museum of Art could not redeem my dignity. While the Carrot Top sighting helped a little, the whole moving halfway across the country thing made the whole day more stressful.
Side note: The one thing I did miss was my special birthday dinner. Since turning 20, I have celebrated each birthday with dinner at a small restaurant named Bruculino's on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Last year we discovered that the owners opened a new French Bistro restaurant (Bistro Cassis) in it's place, which was incredibly tasty, but just not the same. Each year I'd await the braciola that melted in my mouth and the gnocchi that were like little potato pillows from heaven. I heard a rumor that they actually switched spots (Cassis was down on 14th street) and renamed it Pomodoro -- I may have to do some detective work when I'm back in NYC in November.

Friday, September 28, 2007

On Notice: My TiVO

Among all of the season premiers this week, there was only one that really mattered to me (OK, three if you count The Office & 30 Rock that I watch online). I settle into the couch tonight and flip on Grey's Anatomy. I am engrossed in the new story lines and trying to decide if I like Lexi or not (for the record, I'm leaning towards no... since I find her just as whiny/annoying as her half-sister). Izzy sees George at the door, and then...


My TiVO has taken it upon itself that I've seen enough and stopped the recording there. No ending. No previews of next week. I am not a happy camper.

TiVO, you've been warned!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Up to: 9/27/07

Finally awaking from:
My bed
The Balloon Festival was even more exhausting than we imagined!

Planning for:

A return trip to San Diego
A week and a half from now I'll be back on the West Coast. Coronado, you've been warned!

Grocery shopping
Have you ever had one of those weeks when you have no desire to cook?

Doing the happy dance for
Nikon D40x
Coming on Friday -- I've been waiting for a new digital SLR for ages now and I could not imagine a better birthday gift!

Wait... Did she just say birthday gift?! [smirk]

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Show Alert: Plano Balloon Festival

Plano Balloon Festival
Friday 9/21 - Sunday 9/23
Location: Plano, TX
Event link: planoballoonfest.org

Pilot: Dale Tibodeau
Houston, Texas

We will be located just before the Kids Fun Zone, directly along the Launch Field. Stop by and say hello!

Up to: 9/18/07

Sewing... and sewing... and sewing...

The only daylight I've seen in the past 5 days has been through my window, which I conveniently face away from while at The Beast. It's my own fault, really, since I grossly
miscalculated the pacing of my To Do list for this weekend's show inventory and now find myself a full 4 DAYS behind schedule. Since we have to set up Friday afternoon, that pretty much leaves 2 more days to pump out 6 days worth of work. I wish myself Godspeed.

Truthfully, it is weeks like this that I wonder why I have my own business when I could very "easily" go back to a traditional 9-to-5 job (note: please don't think that I think those of you reading with said jobs have it any easier/harder than those of us who take a more non-traditional path. I've been there -- it's not). But come Saturday afternoon or, better yet, Sunday around 7pm when we start to pack up and head home I'll be reminded of why I started The Creative Cupcake. Watching people enjoy my colorful, pretty things, meeting new customers and catching up with our "regulars", and noshing on lots of terrible, fried fair food is worth every sunless minute.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Open letter to my VW:

My Dearest Helga,

Why must you be so spatially efficient? Why must you drive like a sleek car, and not the Soccer Mom Mobile that you appear to be. Your heated seats warming my buns in cold Northeast winters; your strong air conditioner cooling those very same buns in dreadful Texas summers. So strong and reliable. So German.

But today, sadly, I wish I didn't love you so.

We both know there has been some whistling. Some chirping that sounds like a cricket is stuck in your dashboard. I accidentally allowed your washer fluid reserves to get a little low, as you kindly remind me every 15 minutes with that charmingly shrill beep. But you knew I'd take care of you.

Helga, let me ask you something -- why is it that I am unable to take you to the mechanic to find out about that funny, whistling, chirping noise you've been making and discover that is a quick, $25 thing to fix. Why, oh why must it be some $1200, 2-day ordeal? Maybe it's just some bad PMS you're dealing with -- it's OK -- you can tell me.

Of course we'll have them fix you up like you've had an afternoon at Bliss -- even though it now means that my own Bliss massage/facial enjoyment will have to wait. Deep down, I still believe the sound is just you, telling me that you love me too.

Insert witty blog title here...

Lots going on in Cupcake land, hence the sporadic blog posts as of late. As I type there are 43 brand new items waiting to be photographed and listed on the site -- all of which have been patiently waiting for close to 3 weeks now. No time then and no time now, but somewhere, some way I need to make time.

Our first event of the season is coming up next weekend and I don't feel even remotely ready. They quoted about 70,000 people for last year's attendance, which means I need to have a fair amount of back stock to keep our display full. It is also a 3-day show, with three FULL days (6am - 10pm on Saturday... are you kidding me?!) so I need to have a fair amount of sleep leading up until then. I am mostly dreading Sunday night when I will undoubtedly crash into oblivion, not to be seen out of my bed until Wednesday.

I've also discovered how much joy I get in throwing things out -- which is an odd thing for me (a self-proclaimed pack rat) to type. I have a bad habit of keeping things, rationalizing that I'll find a use for them but knowing they will inevitably end up in storage. I've been forced to weed through a good deal of it lately and have admittedly found a great deal of joy in deciding to toss things I haven't used/needed/wanted in the past year. It puts me in quite a zen state, I must admit. Our clothes closet has been put on notice, because I made an appointment with a consignment store and all bets are off!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Up to: 8/16/07

Wedgewood Sterling Dinnerware
After almost 3 years, I am finally unboxing and putting away our wedding china. My bets are on another 3 years before we actually use it!

Playing with:
New ribbons for The Creative Cupcake
They arrived on Monday and I can't keep my hands off them!

Planning for:
Visit Austin
The Mr. and I are headed down late next week. I can't believe it took us almost a year to finally visit.

Relaxing with:
Late Nights at the Dallas Museum of Art
Tomorrow night we'll be keeping cool with the free air conditioning and even free-er Starbucks, all while finally checking out the "From the Ashes of Vesuvius" installation.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

New ribbons!!

Next week I'm going to be adding 25 new ribbons to our choices! Among them are 6 completely new designs (aren't they fabulous?!) and some new sizes for existing design favorites.

This means I have to come up with 6 new names, inspired by some favorite preppy locations. Leave your suggestions in the comments and if I choose to use your name by 8/15, I'll send you a Preppy Ribbon Headband in that style. If that style is not available in the Medium size, I reserve the right to substitute an appropriate item in the same style. You can check out what we're already using here: Ribbon Swatches.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Hello and Welcome to Moviefone

We finally went to see The Simpsons Movie the other night. It wasn't exactly the Worst. Movie. Ever., though it didn't touch our Top 5 for this summer. In a word: Eh....

The Mr. and I were never really hardcore movie goers, but since moving to a place where we don't know many people, trying to have a "social life" takes on a whole new meaning. Apparently that means we go to the movies a lot (generally a matinée, because I'm frugal like that) and have been lucky to go to a lot of pre-screenings. We are indie movie and documentary fans, and love that there are so many smaller indie-friendly theaters here in Dallas. With that said, here are some of my favorites, in Must See order:

1. Death at a Funeral
I don't think I've laughed so hard or so loud at a movie in ages. It helps if you enjoy a somewhat drier, British sense of humor but there are so many outrageously hysterical scenes to enjoy. Peter Dinklage totally steals the movie. I honestly and truly woke up the morning after the screening and my abs ached to high heaven from laughing so hard. Plus, you HAVE to love a movie that has a tag line like: "From director Frank Oz comes the story of a family that puts the F U in funeral."

2. Introducing the Dwights
How could you not fall in love with an aging cabaret singer & comedianne like Jeanie Dwight? I think this only fell into my solid number 2 slot since the actress that played Jill (Emma Booth) annoyed me in a way that was partly because of the way her character was written and partly because she just looked tarty. The underlying theme of letting go of your children was really well done without being overly Movie of the Week-ish. Younger brother Mark (Richard Wilson) was absolutely priceless and had some of the best one-liners in the film.

3. Ocean's Thirteen
George Clooney. Brad Pitt. Matt Damon. Andy Don't-Stare-Directly-At-Me-Or-Your-Eyes-May-Melt-From-My-Hotness Garcia. Sure, it's getting over-done, but it seems like they all had a blast making the movie and it comes across on screen. And did I mention: George Clooney. Brad...... Plus, I am in mad lust with Ellen Barkin's hair.

Up to: 8/9/07

Pink bakery boxes
Yummy new gift boxes coming to the site soon, just in time for holiday shopping.

Listening to:
Maroon 5: It Won't Be Soon Before Long
It's become a staple when I'm driving around and running errands.

Blog Reading:
Clutter Control Freak Blog
10 months since our move and we still have unpacked boxes to deal with!

Shopping for:
Rococo Fabric Tote Boxes
What a pretty way to deal with said unpacked stuff.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Haiku for You

(photo and bad hair circa Sept. 2003 in Long Beach Island, NJ)

hundred and fifteen:
wonderful and loving
months have passed us by.

young and full of life:
we met, we laughed, we explored
we loved together.

we joke about it:
how old and gray we've become
well, at least you have.

here's to many more:
laughs, memories, travel, fun
life shared together.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Up to

Inspired by Megan at Not Martha's blog, here is what I'm up to:

Generation Debt by Anya Kamenetz
Basically... we're screwed!

Flipping through:
Martha Stewart Living - August 07
Mr. Cupcake is always a fan of food on a stick (kebab recipes).

Shop Around the Corner
You've Got Mail has nothing on the original.

Le Creuset Caribbean Blue Dutch Oven
My 5 1/2 quart white one needs a colorful friend.