GeneralDIY: Pumpkin Decorating Without Carving


Don’t get me wrong, I love the traditional way of decorating pumpkins, but this year, I felt it was time for a change. After a little research, I realized that there were many ways of decorating pumpkins without the carving or the mess! These fun techniques will be sure to take your Halloween festivities up a notch, so hurry to the pumpkin patch and pick the perfect pumpkin to decorate. 

Decoupage a Pumpkin
 

 
What You Need: 
                    *Mod Podge Glue
                    *Foam brush
                    *Paper, leaves or other thin materials.
 
Directions: 
 
1. Wash your pumpkin thoroughly so there is no dirt covering the surface.
2. Once the pumpkin has dried, apply a thin layer of Mod Podge glue all over the pumpkin.
3. Next, immediately place the item on the pumpkin that you want to be decoupaged. I would suggest something thin such as a leaf, ribbon, or some magazine clippings. This will make it so everything dries evenly and with a flawless finish.
4. After this dries, put two more top coats of Modge Podge over your final product. Let dry and viola!
 

Shimmer a Pumpkin 
 

 
What You Need: 
 
*Glitter of Your Choice
*Mod Podge
*Foam Brush 
 
Directions: 
 
1. Wash your pumpkin thoroughly.
2. With your foam brush, coat your pumpkin with a thin layer of Mod Podge glue.
3. Immediately sprinkle the pumpkin with the glitter. You can even do this in layers so the pumpkin has many different colors. 
 
Lace a Pumpkin
 

 
What You Need: 
 
*Enough lace to cover your pumpkin completely
*Mod Podge
*Hot Glue Gun
 Directions: 
 
1. After you wash your pumpkin, let it dry
2. Next, cut your lace to fit your pumpkin. It is easy to wrap the whole piece of fabric around it to give you a general idea of how much you will need.
3. Modge Podge the whole pumpkin and immediately place the lace all over your pumpkin. I like to lay the lace flat, place the pumpkin in the middle of the fabric and gather the fabric to the stem of the pumpkin. Almost like you are wrapping a wine bottle with tissue paper. 
4. Cut the loose ends of the fabric so all of the edges are even
5. Hot glue the edges so that they do not fray.

Paint a Pumpkin 
 
 
What You Need: 
 
*Fabric or ribbon
*Paint 
 Directions: 
 
1. After your pumpkin’s surface is cleaned, paint your pumpkin with a couple of coats of paint. 
2. Let dry and then tie a bow around it. This is such a simply way to bring so much life to a little orange pumpkin!
 
Push-Pin a Pumpkin 
 

 
What You Need:
 
 
                    *A lot of Push-Pins 
Directions: 
 
1. This is simple, but time-consuming: Merely push the pins into your pumpkin. Make different sayings, pictures, patterns, or whatever suits your fancy. If you have the right amount of patience, you can have a beautiful pumpkin as the end result.
 
Rhinestone a Pumpkin
 
 
What You Need: 
 
*Rhinestones
*Hot Glue Gun
Directions: 
 
1. Very Simple task: bedazzle your plump pumpkin! Heat up your glue gun to start off. 
2. Place a dab of glue on the bottom of the jewel. 
3. Place jewel on desired area of pumpkin.
4. You can even glue on some little plastic spiders to add even more spooky-glam to your pumpkin project!

Enjoy decorating!
 
(images courtesy of pinterest)

GeneralA Meal from Bethenny Frankel


 
Okay, this fabulous woman is one of my role models. She made an empire out of herself, and I have watched her on Bravo ever since she made the scene. She is an amazing woman who advises others on how to eat and drink well without compromising taste. I have all of her books, watch all of her shows, and absolutely adore her Skinnygirl Margaritas. On her website, she has so many amazing recipes that are free to the public! I made one this weekend and it was absolutely amazing, so I had to share it with you all.

Penne a la Carbonara
(Serves 4)


Ingredients:

* One box of whole wheat penne pasta
* 1.5 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
* 1 Tablespoon of Butter
* 1/2 Cup of freshly grated Parmesan
* 6 Pieces of turkey bacon chopped
* 1.5 Teaspoons of salt
* Teaspoons of pepper
* 1/3 Cup of skim or soy milk
* 1 Egg beaten
* 3 Tablespoons of chopped parsley (optional)

Preparation:
 
* Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, then add the penne pasta.
 
* In a large skillet, sauté turkey bacon until crispy.  Then coarsely chop.  Place bacon back in the skillet.
 
* Cook pasta al dente, drain, leaving pasta slightly wet (adds texture and thickness).
 
* Add the pasta to the skillet with the bacon, add the remaining ingredients and fold until well mixed.
 
* Garnish with parsley.

She also had this fab low-carb drink recipe that is now my favorite drink EVER. 
 
Skinnygirl Mojito



Ingredients:

* 1/2 lime
* 1 cup ice
* 1 1/2 tbsp. lime juice
* 1/2 tsp. gently warmed honey
* 2 oz. clear rum
* 4 oz. club soda
* Mint and lime for garnish
 
Preparation:

* In a martini shaker, use a long spoon to muddle 1/2 fresh lime cut into six wedges. Add 1 cup ice and 1 1/2 tbsp. lime juice.
 
* Combine 1/2 tsp. gently warmed honey, 2 oz. clear rum and 4 oz. club soda. Add this combination to muddled mixture.
 
* Stir until well chilled. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice. Garnish with mint and lime.

 
Check out her other amazing recipes in her fabulous cookbook: The Skinnygirl Dish.
(The chocolate cake recipe alone in this book makes it worth while!)
 

 
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(Photos and recipes courtesy of bethenny.com)

BeautyBeauty How To: Lace Nails

 
 
Want a fun way of decorating your nails that involves very little polish? Lace nail art is a beauty trend I have been eyeing for months now, and I just had to see how to do it.  
 
The great thing about this nail art is that you can add many variations to the look. You can mix up the color combinations, lace only one nail, alter the texture, or lace just the tips. This gives your nails a classy yet edgy vibe that will be sure to catch attention. 
 
 
Here is how to attain this amazing look:
 
What You Need:
 
* Nail color of your choice
* A piece of lace large enough to cover however many nails you are lacing
* Top coat
* Scissors
* Tooth pick
 
Instructions:
 
1. Measure the lace and cut it to fit whatever section of the finger nail you are lacing.
2. Apply nail polish as the base coat and let dry.
3. Apply top coat and immediately place the lace on your nail so it dries with the polish.
4. Use a toothpick to arrange the lace, and then press it firmly onto the lace so it is secured on the nail. 
5. Apply three sets of top coat. This is so there is a thick layer of a glossy finish on top of the lace.
 

 
Enjoy!

(photos courtesy of Pinterest and alllacqueredup)

FashionFashion Faux Pas That No Longer Apply


 
Okay, so we all grew up thinking that mom knew best when she was dressing us. When we started to grow up and think for ourselves, however, we realized that many of her old-school fashion rules were simply outdated. Fashion is becoming much more laid-back, allowing for more variation and experimentation. Some of the fashion rules that grandma and mom adhered to simply need to be reconsidered and given another chance in the 21st century. 
 
These are the “Fashion Rules” that have been tossed out the window:
 
1. Don’t Wear White after Labor Day. 
 

 
I simply cannot comply with this rule since white is such a striking and crisp color. White compliments almost any outfit. As the years go on, this rule is continuously broken – look at all the winter whites that have appeared on recent runways. So go ahead and wear your white heels with that adorable navy blue dress, or pair that white body-con with your best white coat this winter. The only time I would advise not to wear white is to a wedding . . . unless you are the bride!
 
2. Don’t Mix Black with Navy or Browns.
 
 
I break this rule on a daily basis, but for others this is going to be a hard rule to shake. If you aren’t ready to dive head first into this style, don’t worry; I have a way to ease you in. Break up the black and the browns or blues with neutral colors. For the blue + black combo, I tend to separate them with a grey accent piece, while the black + brown combo is easily broken up with a beige. See? I’ve got you covered.  
 
3. Stay Away from Mixing Metals. 
 
 
 
I see no reason why we can’t layer different metals against one another, especially during fall when various shades of browns and oranges are being worn. Why not also compliment different shades of metals? The defiance to this out-dated rule has allowed for more personal expression and adds a little something special to your style. 
 
4. Always Match Your Purse to Your Shoes. 

 
This is such a boring rule when there are so many different purse patterns and colors that can make an outfit stand out above the rest. Take note from any street style guru or blogger babe who mixes and matches prints and patterns with ease. Even adding a patterned purse or a bright, bold clutch to a minimalistic look can bring your whole outfit together. Why limit yourself when there are so many amazing purse options out there?
 
5. Don’t Wear Socks with Shoes. 
 

 
Okay, we all know that Birkenstocks with socks is a major fashion no-no, but heels and socks? Yes, please. This look is major perfection and continues to give ladies liberation in their style choices. Wear some adorable peep-toes with a solid-colored pair of tights. How could you not love socks with a pair of cute ankle-strap heels or the perfect wedge? It adds such a girly appeal to any look. 
 
6. Avoid the Canadian Tuxedo.
 
 
This is still easily able to go very very wrong, but worn the right way this look can knock your socks off! Trick of the trade: it’s easier to wear if one of your denims is at least two shades darker than the other. The farther apart the denim shades are, the easier this look is to pull off. I’ll let you guys in on another little secret:  my Canadian tuxedo of choice is on a well dressed man. Yum.

7. Don’t Wear Leather or Suede During Summer.
 
 
Not being able to wear my fringed vegan leather bag with a cute pair of shorts and my favorite Rolling Stones tee during summer? Are you crazy?? I also love to wear leather sandals and some tall suede boots with shorts when it is warm out. Honestly, I’m ignoring this one.
 

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Of course there are many other fashion faux pas that still exist (awkard turtle necks, VPL, “cliff hangers,” and long sleeves under summer dresses are a few of my peeves), but now you know these are the seven rules you are allowed to break. Basically, just wear whatever makes you feel comfortable! You don’t have to follow any old-fashioned rules any longer: we are a new generation, ladies! 

 (Photos courtesy of Tumblr and Pinterest)

ArtDIY: Wrapping with Fabric

 
Getting sick of the same way of wrapping presents? Here is a fun technique that is a great alternative to wrapping paper: wrapping with fabric! The art of furoshiki gift wrapping is an ancient Japanese tradition that has dated back to the Nara period. It’s a wonderful way to re-use fabric originally intended for other purposes like a scarf, head piece, or even a tablecloth. Your friends will be blown away with this awesome technique! 
It is really quite simple to wrap this way:
 
1. Go to a fabric store and buy about a yard of fabric.
 
2. Place the cloth on a table at a diagonal, with the print facing down on the table.
 
3. Put the gift in the center of the cloth.
 
4. Take one corner of the fabric and wrap it over the gift. Repeat on the other side.
 
5. Take the two remaining corners and tuck them in a little bit so that you have nice gathers.
 
6. Pull each side up towards each other so that they are at the center of the gift.
 
7. Finally, tie the ends together using a square knot.  
 
 
Here is a video tutorial to give you a visual of what I am talking about:
 
Enjoy wrapping!
(photos courtesy of pinterest.com)