Going-Away Party Invitation Idea

Going away parties are sad times. But they can also be a great way to send off friends into the newest part of their journey in life.

I wanted to share with you an idea for invitations that I’ve used for going away parties before. These can be given out by hand or placed in envelopes for mailing.

One side of the invitation presents all of the pertinent information. The other side is a map. Use old maps, new maps, vintage maps, whatever you like. They’re best if you can use maps of where they’re leaving or going to. Try maps with a larger scale, like this one. Or have one with local street maps. 

One fun idea is to mark the person’s favorite places on the maps. These are fun and simple. They can also be quite elegant, depending on the style of map and font you use.

6 Simple Gift Package Ideas

I love pretty packaging. I’m not afraid to admit that when I see something at the store in interesting packaging, I am way more enticed to buy it.

At the same time, though, I am terrible at packaging up my own gifts. For some reason I can’t seem to be able to fold wrapping paper correctly. I usually end up stuffing gifts in bags. Easy peasy.

But I decided to challenge myself. Using just little items I found around my house, I wanted to see if I, even I, could come up with cute packaging. My canvas was a box wrapped in a brown paper bag. I crumpled the paper first to create texture.

Here are six pretty packaging ideas:

This just used some little twigs wrapped up in a twine bow. I used a fun swirl made from copper wire to add brightness.

This one is great because it even smells good. I love evergreen.s

I decided to make the packaging part of the gift here. I attached a small pair of earrings with some brown twine. Earrings are from Reedmor Jewelry.

Does anyone else have an abundance of buttons hanging around the place? This one is simple, but it’s cute. The different size buttons are what create interest here.

This one is just adorable, I think. It’s some eyelet edging that was left over from a dress I made. The bright yellow button is so cheerful.

This one is probably my favorite. I used small shells that I found on a beach trip and attached them with some brown hemp cord. It’s simple but it brings a summer smile to my face.
So what do you think? What are your favorite packaging ideas?

I Made It! Monday Linky Week 28

Ah….this last weekend was pretty much my and my husband’s first weekend off all summer! So relaxing. Fishing, swimming, sewing, movies – what more can a girl ask for?

Hope your weekend was just as great, and I can’t wait to see what you have to link up this week. Last week had some fabulous finds like this one:

It’s such a cute wall hanging from At home by the Baye! I wish I had more space in my craft room, so I could put this up in there! Be sure and grab a featured button on the sidebar.

Now on to this week. A few guidelines, although I’m not picky:

1. Follow my blog if you’d like. I’d appreciate it if you did. Then you always know when a new linky is up.
2. Keep it family-friendly. I reserve the right to delete links.
3. Post my button somewhere, if you would:


4. Have fun! Visit some of the other links as you have the time and share some comment love.

Sponsor Spotlight: Designs by Tenisha

Ground Coffee with Cup Card – $1.50
Let me introduce you to Tenisha, of Designs by Tenisha. She makes some fabulous paper goods as well as clip art for those with a creative eye themselves.

Daisy Note Card – $1.50

Tenisha studied graphic design in college. She immediately fell in love with typography. After researching what aspect of graphic design she wanted to go into, she decided to begin her own business. After a friend told her about Etsy, her shop sprang up.

Lucky me, Tenisha sent me a selection of her cards to review. I was incredibly impressed by the creativity and quality.

The blank cards arrived very thoughtfully packaged with a little thank you note. Then each card was sealed in a clear plastic envelope to protect them. I like this feature because it keeps the individual cards separated and in as fantastic a condition as you received them.

My favorite cards are her series of cards based on food with great sayings like “Be Al Dente.” and “Be Caliente.” They’re beautiful. I really like the “Be Grounded.” card she sent me. It’s not only gorgeous but also quite clever.

Cootie Catcher - Stripes

Tenisha makes fun products that are reasonably priced and perfect for all occasions. Just this week I sent out the lovely thank you card she sent me. It’s understated and yet has just the right message.

Be sure and check out the shop, Designs by Tenisha to pick up your own fabulous cards, stationery, clip art, and more. 

Plus, find her on Twitter: http://twitter.com/artbytenisha
Sign up for her newsletter by e-mailing: designsbytenisha@aol.com
Disclosure: I received a product from sponsor to review. I received no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here are completely honest and 100% my own. Please see full disclosure by clicking above.

Greek-Inspired Summer BBQ Meal & Recipes

This post was originally on  Between the Lines, but I thought I would share these recipes with you all, too. They’re inspired by Greek flavors, so they’re light and refreshing and perfect for summer.

Plus, I personally relish any time I get to use the grill, summertime or not.

Grilled Kebabs

2 pounds steak
1 cup beer
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 zucchini
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 onion

Cut steak into bite-size pieces. Mix beer, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, and hot sauce in a large bowl and toss steak to coat. Marinate at least 30 minutes.

Cut vegetables into bite-size pieces. Thread the vegetables and marinated meat onto skewers.

Preheat grill. Grill the kebabs until meat is done, about 12-15 minutes. Let rest under aluminum foil about 5 minutes before serving.

Greek-Inspired Couscous Salad

1 10-ounce package plain couscous
2 roma tomatoes
1/4 fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Prepare couscous according to package directions. Let cool to room temperature.

Chop tomatoes. Mix tomatoes, herbs, olive oil, lemon juice, feta cheese, and couscous together in a bowl.

Quick Tzatziki

1 cup plain yogurt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup cucumber, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons fresh dill, chopped

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.

Serve the couscous salad alongside the kebabs with the tzatziki for dipping. I really would have liked to use red onions for the kebabs, but apparently they don’t sell those in the small town in which I live. ;)

These recipes are quick and simple, so you can try them even on a busy weekday night.