Christina

Christina is an odd combination of a perfectionist that insists on things happening organically, or according to nature. She wants to have all the control, yet leave life up to chance, and it is a concept that she admittedly constantly struggles with. Her love for her family puts a spark in her eye that only happens with movie effects. She has three best friends from childhood and does not see a need for more. A self proclaimed hermit, she laughs at the hypocrisy of her love for party planning. Christina’s message is the importance of slowing down, and reclaiming joy by surrounding yourself with people and things you love. "I am going to make everything around me beautiful," she says, "that will be my life."

All articles by Christina

 

Mess Free! Paint with Water Books

Both kids and Mom love these Paint with Water books. You just need a cup of water and paint brushes. When you brush the books with water, colored paint forms on the paper. So you don’t need your own paint! My kids have so much fun with these and we find them at our local
Continue reading...  

Cooking with Kids: Pizza Dough

When I know we will be home in the afternoon, and I need to occupy the kids AND cook dinner simultaneously, they LOVE this option of making their own pizzas! Ingredients: Premade pizza dough (one for each child) 1 container sauce (usually good for two pizza pies) 1 bag shredded mozzarella cheese (also good for
Continue reading...  

Art for Kids: Painting Castles

I found these wooden castles at a recent Michaels trip and I was so excited to get started on this project! Now, I thought it would keep them occupied for a looong time, but it was about 30 minutes. It is ok though, because they were so proud of their creations! The castles were $9.99
Continue reading...  

Master Bedroom Update

Sharing photos of my tranquil, relaxing Master Bedroom!
Continue reading...  

Blush Garden Roses

Garden roses! What a delight in the middle of winter. The fragrance of these flowers is absolutely divine. Every time I walk by them I literally stop and smell the roses.
Continue reading...  

Kwik Stix Paint Markers for Kids – My Favorites!

We received this Kwik Stix paint set as a gift from my brother and his wife and they are absolutely amazing! These are my favorite kids art supply to date! They go on so smooth, even Mom was having a blast with this one. I regret to say that my one year old daughter took
Continue reading...  

Tea Storage and Organization

For Christmas I gifted myself a few organizational tools to bring me some sanity in 3 cluttered areas of my kitchen: my tea cabinet, tupperware shelf and junk drawer. I found this beautiful bamboo tea box that holds 120 tea bags. It fits perfectly in a drawer. I am so happy being able to enjoy
Continue reading...  

Zoo Themed Kid’s Birthday Party

We celebrated my son’s 4th birthday at Turtleback Zoo in West Orange, New Jersey. The tablescape set the tone with lions, and tigers and bears… oh my! As favors, I included a zoo map, as well as an “adopted” stuffed animal for each child. I also made these cute little animal cracker snacks for all
Continue reading...  

Halloween Tablescape

My son is obsessed with halloween, and now so is Mom! I did this special tablescape for him, and we had a dinner of spaghetti and these edible eyeballs.
Continue reading...  

All White Bathroom Renovation

Posting photos of our all white bathroom renovation. The before photos are too yucky to post! Needless to say we are very happy with the results. We left the existing tall built-in shelf with some updating: painting the unit, re-lining the shelf bottoms, and getting new baskets and towels. We installed a new vanity and
Continue reading...  

Art Project for Kids: Spooky Halloween Masks

For me, Christmas and Easter are among my favorite holidays, by my son just LOVES Halloween! So to support his favorite holiday, I wanted to think of some fun ways to let him explore the idea of “dressing up” as different things. I found these wooden masks at Michaels craft store. All you need is
Continue reading...  

Purple and Green Bridal Shower

Anyone who knows me knows that I am obsessed with flower arranging. Something about it makes me feel so expressive and in touch with nature at the same time. The textures, colors and patterns come together like a collage and it just brings me so much joy. So of course I was happy to plan
Continue reading...  

Spray Rose and Greenery

I can’t pass up light pink spray roses! They get me every time.
Continue reading...  

Baby Girl Baptism Flower Centerpieces

It brought me so much joy to create these sweet centerpieces for my daughter’s baptism. Here is the bulk of them before delivering to the restaurant.
Continue reading...  

Pink Tulips Galore

One of my favorite flowers – loving these gorgeous tulips!
Continue reading...  

Energy Balls Recipe

Ingredients 1 cup oats ⅔ cup peanut butter ½ cup ground flax seeds 2 tablespoons honey Instructions Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, then refrigerate for 30 minutes so the “dough” is not too soft to roll. Roll into small balls and keep in refrigerator.
Continue reading...  

Lilies and Tulips

In the dead of winter, it’s nice to remind yourself that one day Spring will be back! What better way than with lilies and tulips.
Continue reading...  

Lobster Dinner at Home

Our New Years Day family tradition is to start the year off with a delicious meal – lobsters at home. January 1st is actually my Dad’s birthday, and this has always been what he wanted to do to celebrate. When gathering and celebrating, a charcuterie of meats and cheeses is always a nice way to start.
Continue reading...  

Mum and Daisy Arrangement

Happy New Year! Celebrating 2018 with a colorful arrangement of mums and daisies.
Continue reading...  

Christmas Morning

Merry Christmas! From our home to yours. Picture perfect! These Christmas morning smiles are the greatest gift of all. For our train-loving toddler, a Polar Express electric train set. Happy boy! This little one is perfectly content just watching her big brother open gifts. Such a doll.
Continue reading...  

Gingerbread Man Sugar Cookies

I love the idea of decorating gingerbread men during the holidays, but I don’t like the taste of gingerbread cookies! So, switching things up here and making “sugar cookie” gingerbread men in our house this year. You will need: Betty Crocker sugar cookie mix 2 eggs Butter Gingerbread man cookie cutter Rolling pin Decorating icing
Continue reading...  

Best Slow Cooker Short Ribs Recipe

This slow cooker ribs recipe is absolutely amazing. Perfect comfort food on a chilly day, like we are having here today in New Jersey. Ingredients: 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 2 1/2 lbs boneless beef short ribs (last time I did 3.5 lbs and multiplied ingredients 1.5) 1/8 cup butter 1 large chopped onion 1
Continue reading...  

Teaching Kids About Giving

I came up with this idea one night while talking to my son about Santa and presents and all the Christmas stuff he had been hearing. He just turned three years old, and this is the first Christmas he started to be curious with what was happening. He knew Santa was coming, and he had
Continue reading...  

Christmas Card Art Project for Kids

I love giving my son arts and crafts projects at home. This Christmas greeting card project is super easy. You will need: 10 blank fold-over cards Black sharpie marker Kids markers Glue Gold glitter Embellishments/stickers of choice Use a black sharpie marker to draw the outline of a tree, and write each card recipients name
Continue reading...  

Penguin Christmas Card

This year’s Christmas card was inspired by these little penguin illustrations, how cute are they! Packaged in a kraft envelope printed with an image of our little penguin friend and the works “MERRY”. Then I used a fine point Sharpie (my favorite pen!) to personalize each recipient’s name. Inside is a lollipop adhered with a
Continue reading...  

Family Christmas Card

Every year since the kids have been born, we have been taking a family Christmas card photo. This year, we took it up a notch and had Jacklyn of Jacklyn Lorraine Photography take our photos, she did a fantastic job! We met at a local Nutley park, and it was the first snow! so it was
Continue reading...  

Thanks a Latte Card for Teacher

The holidays are a time to think of the super important people who care for our children. Rather than getting them another tchotchke, I prefer a gift card. This year I did a Dunkin’ Donuts gift card for each, along with a cute card that says, “Thanks a latte for taking care of our little
Continue reading...  

Choo Choo Train Party Favor

There is nothing my soon to be 3 year old loves more than trains, so it seemed an appropriate third birthday theme. I created these adorable wooden engine party favors so that all his friends could join in on the fun and take a little piece of the party home with them. I got the
Continue reading...  

Creamy Chicken Skillet

Ingredients: Thin Boneless, skinless chicken breast salt and pepper 1 tablespoon olive oil 8 ounces white mushrooms, sliced Handful of sun dried tomatoes 1 cup heavy cream ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon pepper 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, stems removed Instructions: Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Add olive oil to
Continue reading...  

Baby Girl Announcement and Stationery

My favorite designs are the ones I create for my family. When I found out I was pregnant with a girl, all I could see was pink and florals. I was excited to create Josephine’s stationery and announcement with that theme in mind. Our beautiful Josephine Eleanor was born on August 11, 2017. She was
Continue reading...  

Practical Baby Gift Every New Mother Needs

When visiting a new mom, keep in mind that she may be overwhelmed. Brining a gift like a plant might just be another thing for her to have to take care of when you leave. I was surprised how sedentary life with a newborn is, so having a basket of essentials nearby was something I
Continue reading...  

What to do with a Huge Tomato

We received this gorgeous huge tomato from my sister’s boyfriend. What to do with it? After staring at it in amazement for a day as a centerpiece on our kitchen table, we decided to include it in our eggs one morning. My son loves tomatoes. I was curious if he would bite right into it!
Continue reading...  

Pizza Party Fun with Kids

My son loves pizza! So I thought it would be fun to let him make his own for dinner one night, so he could see what ingredients it includes. As always, we get everything we need from our trusty Trader Joes! Ingredients: 1 pkg Rustic Ciabatta Flatbread 1 container pizza sauce 1 pkg organic shredded
Continue reading...  

Sharing a Master Bedroom with Baby

Sharing your room with baby is no big deal, and I am going to simplify it for you here. Just by adding a few necessities, your room for two becomes a room for three! This HALO® Bassinest® Swivel Sleeper goes right up to the bed and you can bring the baby toward you when needed
Continue reading...  

Asian Inspired Tossed Salad

Ingredients: Mixed greens Tofu, cubed Mandarin oranges Sliced almonds Chopped tomato Red and yellow peppers, sliced Red onion, sliced thin Cucumber slices Alfalfa sprouts (not pictured) Asian sesame ginger dressing or something similar Instructions: Toss all ingredients together in large bowl and enjoy!  
Continue reading...  

Dijon Chicken Tenders

Ingredients 1 lb chicken tenderloins Plain breadcrumbs (or Panko breadcrumbs) 2 tbsp olive oil Batter 1 egg 1 tbsp mayonnaise 1 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard 2 tbsp flour 1/2 tsp salt Black pepper Instructions Season chicken with black pepper and salt. Combine batter ingredients in medium bowl, whisk until blended. Dip chicken tenderloins in batter,
Continue reading...  

The Most Beautiful Gift

My son picked this beautiful flower for me in my mom’s backyard, so I just had to share the joy of this moment! Seeing the proud look and huge smile on his face when he ran over to hand it over to me… made my heart sing.
Continue reading...  

Prosciutto and Cantaloupe Appetizer

This recipe couldn’t be easier or more tasty. Sweet and salty combine for a sensational appetizer! Ingredients: 1 cantaloupe – seeded and cut into cubes 8 thin slices prosciutto Instructions: Remove the flesh from the rind of the cantaloupe. Top each piece of cantaloupe with a piece of the prosciutto, secure with a toothpick. Serve
Continue reading...  

Best Boxed Pancakes

It’s no surprise, as I am a huge Trader Joe’s fan, but this Trader Joe’s boxed pancake mix is the best I’ve ever had – you’ve got to try it! Ingredients: 3/4 Trader Joe’s gluten free pancake mix 1 Egg 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp water 2 tbsp butter, melted Cooking oil spray Instructions: Preheat
Continue reading...  

NutraBullet Iced Matcha Milk

Ingredients: 16 oz Silk Coconut Milk 4 oz Silk Almond Creamer 1/2 tbsp matcha powder 1 tsp coconut oil 4-5 drops organic vanilla extract 5 ice cubes Raw sugar to taste Pinch cinnamon Pinch sea salt Instructions Add all the ingredients (including the ice cubes) into the NutraBullet, pulse until frothy. Pour into serving glasses
Continue reading...  

Chicken Caesar Salad

When I want a heartier, more filling salad – I know this recipe will do the trick! The combination of croutons, chicken and cheese make it more substantial than the typical “light” salad. You can use a dressing of choice or try this creamy greek yogurt version. Ingredients: Romaine lettuce Grape tomatoes, sliced lengthwise Croutons
Continue reading...  

The Search for a New Sectional Sofa

While I love our old couch, it is time to update from 10 years of love and spills. I am looking for another sectional. We love the chaise on the couch, as it is comfortable, but wondering if we should go bigger, with the family growing, and it looks like there is space for it
Continue reading...  

Seared Scallops with Lemon Orzo

This is one of my favorite dishes. I drive to the Montclair Farmers market just to get fresh scallops to satisfy this craving! It is very important that the scallops are the best quality, freshest you can find. If you can’t get to a fish market, Whole Foods has good scallops too. It is also
Continue reading...  

Avocado, Corn and Tomato Salad

This recipe is refreshing and tasty in the summer. It is great as is, or you can serve alongside grilled chicken or shrimp for a complete meal. Ingredients: 3 ears cooked corn 2 avocados, cut into cubes 1 pint grape tomatoes, sliced lengthwise 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice Salt and pepper
Continue reading...  

Spinach Salad with Green Apple, Dried Cranberries, Blue Cheese and Candied Walnuts

This refreshing salad is a healthy way to satisfy a sweet tooth! The combination of spinach and green apple is a good source of iron, and helps with digestion, while the candied pecans and dried cranberries are sensational to the taste buds. Sliced cucumbers add an extra crunch to make this salad nothing but perfection.
Continue reading...  

Modern PB&J: Peanut Butter, Raspberries and Banana on English Muffin

A modern spin on the classic PB&J. This version includes some fresh fruit and natural peanut butter. A toasted english muffin gives it a little crunch! A recipe doesn’t have to be complicated to be healthy and tasty! Ingredients: English muffin, toasted Peanut butter Banana, sliced Raspberries Instructions: Toast the english muffin, spread peanut butter
Continue reading...  

Over Easy Eggs with Tomato Open Faced Sandwich

Ingredients: 2 eggs 2 slices of tomato 2 slices of fresh Italian bread Bosari seasoning or salt and pepper to taste 1 tablespoon butter 2 tablespoons olive oil Directions: Toast the fresh Italian bread slices, and then brush lightly with 1 tablespoon Olive Oil. Place on place and set aside. Heat a small non-stick skillet
Continue reading...  

Pink Rose and Spray Rose Flower Arrangement

I love combining roses and spray roses in a flower arrangement. I thought a pink color scheme would look beautiful in this cobalt blue oriental pot.
Continue reading...  

Seven Layer Dip

This recipe is great to bring to a party, it serves lots of people and is easy to make. It also can be served at room temperature so you don’t have to worry about chilling or heating up at someone else’s house – it’s no frills! Ingredients 1 (1 ounce) package taco seasoning mix 1
Continue reading...  

Bacon Wrapped Dates Appetizer

These are absolutely delicious! The sweet and salty combo is just perfect, your guests will love them. Ingredients 1 (8 ounce) package pitted dates 4 ounces shelled pistachios 1 pound sliced bacon Directions Preheat the broiler. Slit dates, remove pit if it is included. Place one pistachio inside each date. Wrap dates with bacon, using toothpicks to
Continue reading...