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may book giveaway!

April 29, 2016

salad dressings book cover pleasure in simple things blog

I am not saying I don’t eat salads all year ‘round – because I do!  But, I definitely enjoy them all the more in the spring when a fresh plate of greens can be enjoyed while sitting outside on a patio or in the sun at the beach!  All food tastes better al fresco! :)

With that said, it should not surprise you that my May book giveaway is salad related!  It is called Salad Dressings by Jessica Strand and it is a wonderful resource on how to create dressings for all your spring salad creations!

May book giveaway salad dressings by Jessica Strand

Just leave a comment to be entered to win a copy of this great recipe book.

Thank you to everyone that left a comment for a chance to win last month’s selection Naked Cakes:  Simply Stunning Cakes by Hannah Miles.  (Click here for more on that.)  The winner is Heather!  Congratulations and happy baking!

If you are an Instagram user, please follow @pleasureinsimplethings and join our challenge for the month of May! In keeping with the salad theme, tag your salad creations with #pleasuregram so we can share!  (My daughter made me the wonderful salad pictured below!  It was yummy!)

May 2016 Instagram Challenge pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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may day surprises

April 26, 2016

flowers for May Day pleasure in simple things blog

I have done many different May Day surprises over the years. I love the element of surprise mixed with the beauty of fresh flowers – May Day combines these two elements perfectly!

Daffodils in a May Day Cone pleasure in simple things blog

This year, making my May Day arrangements, I decided I would only use the flowers I could harvest from my yard. This would have been an easy assignment in two more weeks or so, but when I went out into the yard today, I realized there are few flowers in bloom right now!

celebrating May Day with birch bark cone arrangements pleasure in simple things blog

I stuck to my challenge and used the only two flowers varieties I found in bloom. I arranged them in some plastic-lined, birch bark hanging cones I discovered for $2.75 each in the Terrain clearance room.

pleasure in simple things blog celebrates May Day

To add a little interest, I added some variegated Hosta leaves; picking the few that were just starting to poke through the ground! Even my Lillies of the Valley have yet to bloom!

I hope I have inspired you to create some May Day surprises of your own…what can you create from your yard?

May Day cones pleasure in simple things blogThank you for stopping by!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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‘beachify’ your bottles

April 22, 2016

diy shells for wine bottles pleasure in simple things blog

The weather has finally turned here in Connecticut and I am loving every warm, sunny second of it!

For Friday field trip today, I am taking you into my wine cellar. (Not really, I don’t have a wine cellar – although I do keep a bottle of wine in my cellar!) But, I am showing you a bottle of wine!

shells for wine bottles pleasure in simple things blog

Warm weather not only makes me smile, but encourages me to find summer enhancements that also make me smile. A super simple one is to add a shell garland to your summer wine! A glue gun and a couple of shells (or beach glass) glued to a piece of twine create some easy summer décor! Just glue a shell – preferably found at the beach – onto each end of a length of twine and wrap it around a bottle!

shells on twine for wine bottles pleasure in simple things blog

These make great warm weather napkin rings as well!

If you are giving a bottle of wine as a gift, you can even roll a cute summer dishtowel (maybe a lobster or crab motif) around the bottle and tie it on with the shell enhanced twine!

beachify wine bottles pleasure in simple things blog

An easy way to add a feeling of summer and a smile! :)

Happy sunshine! Thank you for stopping by!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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party garland diy

April 19, 2016

diy garland for a birthday celebration pleasure in simple things blog

I am making a garland today that is a super easy DIY. Mine is for a birthday party, but the same design can easily be adapted for a Mother’s Day celebration or any other party.

easy diy garland birthday celebration fun pleasure in simple things blog

Supplies needed are card stock, chalkboard paint or chalkboard Con-Tact paper, and twine or ribbon.

diy birthday garland pleasure in simple things blog

First, I am covering some card stock in chalkboard Con-Tact paper. Chalkboard Con-Tact paper is a staple in my craft room, but if you don’t have any, chalkboard paint can be used instead. I cut circles from the covered paper – one for each letter I need for my finished garland. I have a 2 1/2” circle cutter that makes the circle cutting really easy, but scissors can be used after tracing the desired circle size onto the paper using a cup or small plate.

diy party garland pleasure in simple things blogNext, with a small hole punch, I placed two holes in each circle to hang the letters from twine. Because the holes are small, I don’t need to tie knots in the twine to keep the letters in place. If the holes you make are much larger than your ribbon or twine, you will need to add knots to keep the letters in position.

making diy birthday garland pleasure in simple things blog

Chalkboard is just one of the many finishes you can use for this project. Old wallpaper samples, gift wrap, brown bags, or any decorative paper that may coordinate with your party’s theme, also work wonderfully. Just use a spray adhesive to mount the desired paper onto card stock. Old book pages look awesome as well…just use rubber stamps or permanent marker to add the letters.

displaying diy birthday garland pleasure in simple things blog

I hope I have inspired you to make a festive party garland for your next celebration! A small version tied to skewers also works great as a cake topper!

Thank you for stopping by!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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garden party bridal shower

April 15, 2016

bride to be placesetting at Terrain bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

What is better than shopping at Terrain? Attending a bridal shower at Terrain, of course!

Bridal shower at Terrain in Westport pleasure in simple things blog

I recently had the opportunity to do just that at Terrain’s Garden Café and today I am sharing with you on Friday field trip!

bridal shower menu pleasure in simple things blog Terrain WEstport

bridal shower apps at Terrain pleasure in simple things blog

fern favors bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

I know many of you are not lucky enough to have a Terrain located near you. With only two Terrain store locations – one outside Philadelphia, and one in Fairfield County, Connecticut – many of you can’t frequent the store regularly like me!

placesettings Terrain bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

favors from bridal shower on pleasure in simple things blog

But, for today, everyone can enjoy the beautiful aesthetics of a Terrain event! For a detail oriented, color obsessed person like me; Terrain hits all the marks – particularly when the organizers of the party working with Terrain have incredible style as well!

bread and butter at Terrain Westport bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

Enjoy the photos!

party prizes bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

bridal shower naked cake pleasure in simple things blog

Please note: The beautiful fern favors, Prosecco prizes, wooden spoons, and cake top were not done by Terrain – they were created by the party organizers and, as you can see, tied into the Terrain décor perfectly!

celebration at Terrain pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you so much for stopping by and have a marvelous weekend!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

1 comment

recipe for love

April 12, 2016

a spoon from bridal shower activity pleasure in simple things blog

I recently went to a really fabulous bridal shower hosted by the future bride’s mom – with some help from the gals in the bridal party. Today, I am sharing one of the activities created for the event.

place setting with woooden spoon  pleasure in simple things blog

When I walked into the shower, I noticed wooden spoons tied in gold ribbon graced all the place settings. They certainly seemed appropriate for a bridal shower; particularly for this once, since both the future bride and future groom are great cooks!

bridal shower spoons for love activity pleasure in simple things blog

But, it wasn’t until a little later into the shower that the true purpose of the spoons was revealed. These spoons were meant to hold each guest’s ‘recipe for a happy marriage.’

spoons for love pleasure in simple things at a bridal shower

Fine point permanent markers were passed around to guests and each spent some time creating the perfect ‘recipe’ for the bride-to-be; recording it onto a spoon.

creating spoon bridal shower pleasure in simple things blog

What a sweet idea to collect the sentiments of all the guests!

bridal shower spoon pleasure in simple things blog

The groom’s mom’s message to the bride-to-be. :)

After the bride-to-be chose her three favorite spoons, the bridal party displayed them in a shadow box and awarded prizes to the authors of the three chosen sentiments. Priceless! (With a little more time, maybe the spoon handles could be dipped in metallic gold paint or gold-leafed as part of the permanent shadow box!)

shadow box from bridal shower activity pleasure in simple things blog

I hope you are inspired by this sweet ‘recipe for love.’

Please stop back on Friday when I will share some of the wonderful decor from this shower.  I can’t wait to reveal the fabulous venue!

Thanks for stopping by.  Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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jonesing for warmer temps

April 8, 2016

sunset on the ct coast pleasure in simple things blog

Can you believe, here in Connecticut, there are still weather forecasts of snow? It is a little much, in my opinion. Can we just get on with spring?

stonington ct pleasure in simple things blog

For today’s Friday field trip, I am providing a little glimpse of the Connecticut coast and hoping to inspire some thoughts of warmer weather.

ct coast pleasure in simple things blog

I know you can’t tell by the photos that the April temperatures while I was photographing were in the ‘20s!

enjoying the ct coast pleasure in simple things blog

Enjoy thoughts of warmer weather ahead!

end of day in ct pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you so much for stopping by.

Have a marvelous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

4 comments

snow in april

April 5, 2016

benches in snow pleasure in simple things blog

The first day of spring has passed. Easter has come and gone. This morning it snowed!

For me, the snow seemed so poetic. April is National Poetry Month. All I could think about on my way to work, driving in the snow, were some of the great poems by Robert Frost, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Ogden Nash…

snow on a branch pleasure in simple things blog

There are so many wonderful writings about snow…in poetry, as well as other readings. Thinking about this reminded me of a recent book group meeting. I was reminded of how often I come across beautiful phrases while reading contemporary fiction.

With all these thoughts of poems and beautiful writing, I thought I would try to inspire you during this month of April to take notice of a poem, or even a phrase, that really speaks to you.

bench pleasure in simple things blog

I am including a few photos from this morning’s snow and a quote from a reading to help inspire you to also take note of some special words during April.

quote pleasure in simple things blog

Thanks for stopping by.

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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april book giveaway!

April 1, 2016

april 2016 book giveaway by pleasure in simple things blog

This month’s giveaway selection is another title by Hannah Miles, the author of last month’s giveaway. I couldn’t resist this book of absolutely gorgeous cakes! April always begins a flurry of celebrations – birthdays, showers, graduations…making it the perfect time to create a special celebration cake!  This month’s giveaway book is Naked Cakes.

beautiful dessert cake from Hannah Miles pleasure in simple things blog
The new trend of stripping cakes back and decorating them very simply fits my personal aesthetic wonderfully. I love this book because it embraces the trend and provides some gorgeous photos to accompany the recipes.

With categories of Vintage Elegance, Rustic Style, Romantic Charm, Chic Simplicity, and Dramatic Effect, you are sure to find the perfect recipe and design for your special occasion.

cake from Aprils giveaway book pleasure in simple things blog

Just leave a message on this post for a chance to win this beautiful title by Hannah Miles. From the comments, a winner will be chosen at random.

april 2016 book giveaway pleasure in simple things blog

A big congratulations to Kristen, the winner of the March giveaway selection, Hot Chocolate (click here to see more), another great title by Ms. Miles. Thanks to everyone who left a comment for a chance to win.

Instagram users, please read on! For April’s Instagram Challenge, let’s share photos of the flowers in our gardens! This is the time of year when all our seasonal favorites start popping up and I would love to see yours! Use hashtag #pleasuregram during April to share your spring flower photos…can’t wait to see them!

instagram challenge april 16 pleasure in simple things blog

Have a wonderful weekend! Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

1 comment

fabric herb tags with grommets

March 29, 2016

mint herb tag pleasure in simple things blog

You may remember I used grommets on some of my holiday gift tags this past Christmas. They create such a wonderful detail on a simple tag! Today, I am using grommets again on tags, but this time on fabric rather than paper.

fabric herb tags pleasure in simple things blog

Adorable tags can be created using scraps of fabric, letter stamps, and grommets. The tool for applying the grommets cost only a few dollars at your local craft or fabric store and is available in many sizes. Once you own this simple tool, you will find so many ways to use grommets! The only piece of equipment you will need, in addition to the grommets and the grommet tool, is a hammer.

I cut little flag shapes from my fabric scrap and rubber stamped onto them the names of my potted herbs. Adding the grommets creates the perfect little detail to add some twine for tying the tags onto the handles of my herb pots!

making fabric tags pleasure in simple things blog

As you can imagine, these tags have some wonderful applications! Using them as place cards and tying them onto napkins is a sweet way to use them. The ties can be made from natural twine or in a color to match a specific table décor. They make sweet gift tags to personalize a wrapped gift. Or, a number of them can be used to make a banner for a birthday cake. In planning a wedding, they can be utilized as escort cards.

fabric tag tied on herb pot pleasure in simple things blog

I hope I have inspired you to make up some fabric gift tags! How will you use them?

fabric tags with grommets pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you for stopping by! Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

P.S. To see how I used the grommet tool to create sea glass gift tags, click here.

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