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Edible Valentine’s . Good Eats (Giveaway!)

I don’t even have kids yet, and I can already understand how it might be kind of a nightmare to have to come up with 30 adorable Valentine’s Day treats that nobody else in the class has… That’s why I like the idea of “halfway homemade.” I’m working with Rich’s on their Bakery Because campaign because I love the idea of taking some of the pressure off ourselves when it comes to gifting. You can gift freshly-baked (by someone else) treats packaged up as perfect little Valentines – or even as little “just because” treats! You can pick something up from your the bakery while grocery shopping, combine it with a few cute items you might already have, and voila! Read on for my own little Valentine tutorial and a fun contest!

In the interest of keepin’ it real with you guys, this post was sponsored by Rich’s for their Bakery Because campaign. I was paid for my participation, but all project ideas and content and are entirely unbiased and entirely my own.
Andrei and I aren’t too big on Valentine’s Day celebration or gifting. We usually just do a card and something small and sentimental.  This is our first married V Day, so I wanted to do something cutesy but still not over the top. We love to surprise each other with little things here and there, so I wanted to do something I could hide all over the house and car… He’s pretty much nuts about brownies, so I picked up a box of petite* brownie bites from the Kroger bakery. They’re soft, chewy, and take about three bites apiece – perfect for a midafternoon snack.
*I’m pretty sure they just call them petite so that we don’t feel as bad downing half a box…
1.   I used a tiny dab of peanut butter to affix a conversation heart to the front of one brownie bite to give it a cute little holiday touch.
2.   After folding out an individual cake pop (not truffle) box that I picked up at Michael’s, I slid two brownie bites in the box back-to-back with the top of the brownie facing the window so that you can see the little heart.
You guys know I love to go a little over the top with packaging, but I did keep these relatively simple since they were for Andrei and not my girlfriends or a classroom full of kiddos…
3.   I stamped and embossed manila shipping tags with a cute little sentiment and swapped out the string that comes with the tags for some pretty grey striped baker’s twine.
4.   I affixed the tags to the boxes by tape the twine with some pretty floral washi tape. The washi tape served another purpose, too: since it’s a cake pop box, there’s a hole in the top for the stick, which we obviously don’t need for this project. The tape covered the hole right up!
Contest!
Three of you will win $25 each! Ready for the details? Share this blog post on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest with the hashtag #bakerybecause and then in the comments on this post, share a story about somebody special in your life who makes every day a little better. Why are they close to your heart? Share your warm fuzzies, people!  If you win and decide to use your $25 to make a bakery gift for your somebody special, let me know so that I can share it with my readers! 
On February 15, I’ll pick my three favorite stories, and Rich’s will send you each $25. 
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blogroll . ♥elycia

It makes me super happy when I hear that somebody has tried one of my tutorials. It makes me giddy when somebody takes pictures. The pictures thing doesn’t happen terribly often. Take pictures, people. PICTURES! Anywho though, imagine how overthemoon I was when I saw ♥elycia and the variation she did of my chevron fingernails tutorial. Instead of using the nail stamps, she squiggled the little guys on there herself with a nail pen!

More importantly, however, does she not have the most epic hair of all time? *covet, covet*

Go check out her amazing blog. It’s officially on my list of must-reads, and I’m so glad to have found it. Now I just have more things I want to do in my already limited time. Eek!

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ten things to smile about right this very second

I’m back. I’m sorry I’ve been awful, but I’m really, truly, honestly back. I’m still a little mentally unstable after the worst finals week of my life, but I rocked the first year of my Master’s degree with a 4.0 (Yes, I am fishing for compliments…)!!!

Though I think that that little tidbit could keep me grinning for days all by itself, you guys might need some cheer as well, sooooo:

via Short and Sweets (Can you believe these ^ are vegan?!)
1.  You could be eating delicious, homemade-from-scratch sugar cookies in the next 30 minutes with this quick, easy recipe. The best part? You probably already have every single ingredient!

2.   It’s thisclose to not being Monday anymore. Good enough for me!

via Photography by Lori H.
3.   This is one of the prettiest times of year. Here’s where you all bombard me with how it’s still snowing/already scorchingly hot wherever you are. I’m sorry. I’m spoiled.

4.   Beautiful quotes, like this one from Mother Teresa: “Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.”

via garybabb.net
5.   The Landlord – Will Ferrell and one cute little Pearl. It’s completely wrong on countless levels, but it’s a good, cheap laugh.

6.   You get a three-day weekend in less than three weeks! Memorial Day is coming up on May 31 – one less Monday in your life…

7.   Two words: Good. Music. One new suggestion: One eskimO

8.   Sweet little reminders of spring. Like these

via oh, hello friend
9.   If you’ve just gotten out of school for the summer like I have, then maybe you have some extra time to make creative little proyectos like some of these!

10.   Avatar and Alice in Wonderland come out on DVD within the next month!

What can you add to the list? Do you have any happy news, funny videos, or a lolcat, perhaps?
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