Life As I Know It

Gifts of Paper {First Anniversary}

I LOVE gift giving. Like, really really love it. Maybe it’s because I have incredibly thoughtful parents who still send me occasional packages out of the blue. Or the fact that I pride myself on making some notes throughout the year of gift ideas for my people, and love the look of surprise when they receive a gift that they had forgotten they want. Or maybe it’s just that I buy people gifts that I would want myself, and it turns out they love it too!

That said, every lady out there knows that buying gifts for the men in your life is usually the most challenging shopping you’ll do. Whenever the hubster wants to get me a gift, he knows to turn to my pinterest boards or my amazon wish list, and he is sure not to disappoint. But me, well…knowing our first anniversary was approaching, I spent a lot of time toying with the idea of paper (because I kind of love the traditional yearly anniversary themes), and eventually came up with a few ideas that my husband loved. I found this awesome print of a 1949 Nashville Blueprint on Etsy, purchased this pretty white frame from Bed, Bath, and Beyond, and ordered a set of personalized flat notecards from The Stationary Studio. My hope is that as he finishes grad school and begins job interviews, he can use these for his thank you notes. And hopefully this map will land in his office one day when he is officially a city planner, and he can always think of our first anniversary!

photo 1

I had a few other ideas along the way too, so if you’re trying to think of some paper-themed gifts for your man, here’s my little list…

paper gifts1. Maps – Maybe it’s just Hubster, but he LOVES all things maps. And considering he is studying to be a city planner, and he calls Nashville home, the blueprint was an obvious find. But you could really do ANY cool map. Definitely peruse etsy or a cool map shop, like Metsker Maps in Seattle.

2. Stationary – It’s practical, but I don’t think you realize how much you need it until you have it. It feels good to be able to write that thank you note on a solid piece of paper with your name on it!

3. Tickets – concerts, beer tastings, museums, airplanes…almost everything has a ticket. Buy some!

4. Photography – It is so inexpensive to get large photos printed these days. Go shoot some shots of his favorite place (Wrigley Field, anyone?) or your family pet. Whatever it is, make it personal, and blow it up big. You can also get a calendar made of your favorite photos on shutterfly and other similar websites. The hubster did this for me and I love it!!

5. Instabook – And speaking of printing photos, how about an Instabook? A super fun way to surprise your honey with something a little sentimental.

6. Books – Does your hubby like to read? Even just a little? Get him a book about a favorite topic (or of maps!) or find a new novel. You both have to read Unbroken if you haven’t already. (And if you happen to be a man on here looking for a gift for your lady, I highly recommend Wild. She will love it!

7. Gift certificate – Like tickets, you can pretty much get a gift certificate for anything. A groupon for a fun new class together? A massage? Bass pro shop? You know your man best. You got this.

8. Invitation – Plan a super fun date day or night, and then create a fun invitation to give him.

9. Magazine subscription – An oldy but a goody. Pick out something fun he wouldn’t usually splurge on.

10. A love letter – Because really, who doesn’t love hearing how awesome they are.

Or, you can always go with my husband’s method: tell your spouse that you will print off gift receipts for your what you bought and give them those as the “paper.” ACTUALLY though, he gave me several gifts, and one of the BEST was that he completely cleaned and organized our office while I was at work one morning. So this was the gift of getting rid of SO MUCH PAPER and it made wifey SO HAPPY!!


Daily Notes, Mmm...Food...

Homemade Heart Shaped Marshmallows

Yeah this happened.  What is it, you ask?

Oh, it’s just a giant, pink, heart-shaped marshmallow.  No big deal.

Another Carli & Me endeavor.  I honestly can’t even remember which recipe we used…Maybe Alton Brown’s.  Most recipes are pretty much the same.  It’s getting creative with flavors, colors, and sprinkles that made this so fun.  For your viewing pleasure, here is our exciting process…

Boiling sugar at extreme temperatures…

And whipping at high speeds…

Until it goes from clear:

To white fluffy goodness.

And then we transformed it into PINK fluffy goodness.

A thorough layer of pink sprinkles is absolutely key.

The Big Flip:

What?  You don’t want just one giant heart-shaped marshmallow?  Ok then…let’s cut it up.

A little dunk in some powdered sugar and sprinkles, and VOILA!

Are they not the cutest things you ever saw??

Maybe we should package them too!!!

A little double sided tape…

Cute little packages!

Creative Crafting, Daily Notes

Holiday Wine and Cheese Party Invitations

Now that we have Thanksgiving behind us, we can officially move on to CHRISTMAS.  And, in celebration of the season, we will be hosting another Wine and Cheese Party.  But this won’t be your typical wine and cheese…oh no, this will be a CHRISTMAS Wine and Cheese Party.  Get pumped.

To get everyone in the holiday mood, we spent some time making real, snail-mail bound paper invitations for our event.  If you’re looking to get people excited about your party this holiday season, follow these simple invitation instructions!

What you’ll need:
Cream-colored card stock (to print on)
Colored card stock (your choice on the color–whatever fits your party best!)
Fun scissors (we love scallops and waves)
Wide ribbon to match your colors
A guest list!

First, decide on your text.  Type it up and print it out.  Using a colored font can add a nice touch.

Second, be sure your base (colored) card stock fits in your envelopes (if it doesn’t, cut it).  Scallop your printed cream-colored card stock smaller than your base card stock.

Next, glue your papers together.

Finally, tie a ribbon around your invitation for some flair.  You may need to flatten it a tad for your envelope, but your guests will love discovering something special in the mail.

Throw the party of the year!

Creative Crafting, Daily Notes

Crafting Monday: Desk Space Makeover!

So, when my mom was in town a couple weeks ago, we decided it was time to clean up, reorganize, and cute-ify my desk space, making it an ideal place to do both school work and crafts.  Everything we did was easy and cheap, and it made a world of difference!  Let’s take a look…

Here is the before picture:


And here is the after…


Three floating shelves from Target
Three coordinating fabrics
New ribbon
Scrapbook paper
Four embroidery hoops

With all this, plus what I already had, I:
-recovered the seat of my chair
-made simple curtains for my little shelves next to the desk
-covered my silver magnet/pin board with fabric
-put paper in embroidery hoops for the wall
-“ribboned” some jars (and will soon be covering the lids with fabric)
-laid cute piles of fabric and ribbon on my new shelves
-and you may notice, I switched the two side cabinets. Not a big difference but it worked out better for what I wanted (moving the printer farther from the entrance and making more space for the lamp and other items on the left)

Here’s a shot of the shelving section..sorry the lighting was bad!  It was at night but I just had to get some shots to share!