Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It's A Party for You and Me!

Guess what today is... Yep, it is The English Pea Studio's second birthday. And the way I celebrate - I give you a present. How is that for a birthday party? So... here it goes. The first gift - FREE Shipping. Yep, order today through Sunday, June 5th, and use the code: PARTY at checkout. How's that for festive?

And don't fret if you aren't needing to order, I have something for you too. I am giving away one printable CUSTOM party package. What does this mean, well... you get to choose the theme and start from scratch with me designing everything to your hearts content. All this comes with:
4.25x5.5 size invitation
2" party favor Sticker - customized for your needs
3" cupcake topper with two background designs - customized for your needs (will match favor stickers)
5x7 Welcome sign
8.5x11 " sheet of images to use for decor
Thank you note template
(fine print: winner will receive gift certificate with these specefics detailed. gift certificate has no monetary value. Winner must use the certificate within one year of receiving it. This is a printable file. No physical documents will be presented. All documents will be emailed to the email address the winner indicates).

Okay, so you excited now? I thought you would be. Here are a few ways to enter. With each entry please make mention of it in comment section. The more stuff you do, the more entries you receive.
1. Comment below - just say hi, happy birthday, or "yes, enter me, please!"
2. Follow the blog
3. Share on your blog, facebook, twitter (or whatever social site tickles your fancy)
4. "Like" The English Pea over on facebook
I will announce the winner next Monday!

Thanks for a great two years. I couldn't have done it without all my WONDERFUL customers, friends and family, and my hubby and kids (that endure the craziness at times).

Now let's party!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Scrap It Saturdays: Dainty Bumble Bee

Okay, you could argue that I went a little overboard with my bumble bee madness, but I must admit, it was super cute. And when I suggested the tutu and appliqued t-shirt idea to my friend Angela for McKenna's birthday present she was more than happy to oblidge.

I haven't given you the play by play on this one, but you will find the pattern below. And just a little word to the wise, download these patterns now, because they will be going away for good soon - yes, I am trying to decide if I am going to sell them as patterns, appliqued tshirts (already made), both, or iron ons (or all three). Would love to know your opinion.

Oh, and check back next week. I am going to be celebrating a birthday - The English Pea's birthday. Do you know what that means? Presents for YOU! Don't miss it! :)
{right click on image. Select "Save as" and place it in your file. Do the same with the directions and you are done!}

Friday, May 27, 2011

{sarah lee}

Nope, I am not talking about the brand "Sara Lee." While delicious, I am actually speaking of my little sister - Sarah Moore - soon to be Sarah Lee. Yep, you guessed it her beau, Rob Lee (thus the future name), popped the question (we had been waiting and waiting and waiting - sorry Rob, we are an impatient family) and while they have only been dating for a year, we knew this match was one made in heaven - seriously. We are so thrilled for both of them and just love soon to be "Uncle Rob." We can't wait for the supersized Texas wedding coming all too soon. Congrats Sarah and Rob! We love you both!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

{a dainty bumble bee}

So these are the invitations that were the inspiration for the tutu I shared with you on Saturday. I also made a little t-shirt - which I will be sharing this Saturday. These are my favorite invites as of late. They are also up in the shop - for those of you interested. :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

a full house, and still so few

The kids enjoying a popsicle after some time at the pool and pizza on the porch. They had SO MUCH FUN!
Charlotte after feeding Leah Cate a bottle - it was her first time doing it and she felt like a big girl.
My lovely and precious mother with her youngest granddaughter - also trying to soak up all the time with us while she could. :)

It is comical to me that I can have a full house and only one of my siblings is present. Of course, that sibling comes with his own family and you add our family of four and his family of four and my mom and you do have a pretty full house - nine people. The funny thing is that there were eight other people missing - I know CRAZY!And those eight don't include my other sister's significant others that aren't "officially" part of the family yet. All that said, I had a WONDERFUL, wonderful time with my mom, brother, his wife and their girls. Our times together are never long enough. The funny thing about half of my family being so far away is that I do believe I appreciate our times together so much more. We never know when our next time together will be and I just try to soak up all the time that I have with them. Hope you enjoy these photos from our "full house" weekend. :)

Monday, May 23, 2011

this weekend...

I was in hog heaven kissing and cuddling my sweet niece - and enjoying some of my family. My mother has been here for a few days and my brother and his family came over for part of the weekend. There really is nothing better than enjoying the people you love over yummy food, great sunshine, and a leisurly evening chatting outdoors - while the children played of course.

More pictures to come, but I am off to take my mother to the airport. Sigh... all good things must come to an end!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Scrap It Saturdays: No Sew Tutu

A good friend of mine had me create an adorable invitation for her one year old's birthday. You may have caught a glimpse of it in my custom post a few weeks back. She wanted to do dainty bumble bees and I had so much fun creating it for her.

I took things a little further and set out to make her sweet baby girl an outfit for her big day. As you all know tutus are all the rage and this was part of the ensemble I made. I had NO IDEA how EASY these were to make and I found this tutorial VERY helpful.

For those of you intersted I also have detailed my experience below as well as included pictures so that you, too, can create one for yourself. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

What you will need:
This was for a one year old so I used approximately 2 yards of yellow tulle and one yard of white.
measuring tape
glue gun

First I measured a piece of elastic to fit the child's waiste - in this case 18". I then sewed the ends together - you could also hot glue if you don't want to sew.

Next I set out to make the strips for the tutu. I rolled up each section of tulle into a large strip like you see in this first picture. Next I trimmed the ends to make them all even.

I then measured three inches for each stip and trimmed - resulting in multiple sections like you see in image #4.

We decided based on the little girl's height that the length needed to measure nine inches from the waiste.I cut each strip into 18 inches and tied them off in the middle onto the elastic (how to tie: take 18 inch strip and fold in half. Place fingers through the loop and wrap around elastic. Then pull both loose ends through the loop you made and it "ties off."). I repeated until the whole thing was complete.

And last, but not least, I added the bow with a hot glue gun. Easy peasy! Who knew!

And here is the final result. Check back next week to see the oh so cute, bumble bee top that I paired with it - and the free pattern too. :)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday's Find: Cranny

We have had a bit of a cold snap here in the South. Yes, I know, CRAZY. Last week it was in the 90's and we went to the pool. This week some of our lows have been in the 40's. Burrr! So this warm, wonderful, coral yarn grabbed my attention.

Cranny - the fabulous shop this piece comes from - calls this a door sweater and how appropriate. I love the colors and the seersucker on the ruffle... have I mentioned how much I LOVE seersucker. I truly love everything in this shop and I hope you enjoy looking through her things as much as I have.

Check back tomorrow... Gasp, I actually have a Scrap It Saturday's post. Yep, I haven't forgotten. Just busy, folks. :) See you tomorrow and Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

WILD African Safari

Do you remember the Safari invitation that I mentioned in my custom post a couple weeks back? Well, this is the party that it was announcing. It is always fun to be part of someone's vision when I do invitations and I loved how Amy and Brad took this theme and ran with it. From the decor to the food, every little detail was planned to the "t."

Photo Above: The African Explorer - aka Paxton the birthday boy. Amy had these great little binoculars for all the kiddos - to "go exploring" for little safari animals in the yard like the ones you see above. And how delicious does the "lion" - chicken - kabobs look that Brad grilled perfectly?

Paxton with his mom and dad. A cake that was both delicious and adorable made by Nicole Coleman.

The food - all the food was prepared by Brad and family and was all DELICIOUS. I love how they carried the theme into the food - the fruit skewers and zebra cakes being some of my favorite.

There were many activities and plenty of places to rest ourselves to enjoy that delicious food. And this party wasn't complete without facepainting - in your wild animal of choice. :)

And this is one of my favorite pictures as of late. Charlotte WOULD NOT have her face painted - as it would make her dirty. Refused to wear pants (their was a jump house) and insisted on this smocked dress, and decided that a bow in her hair was inappropriate for the afternoon (much to my dismay as her hair was all in her face), but I LOVE this photo, half painted nails and all. She wasn't prepared for the safari, but she certainly enjoyed it - and who wouldn't, with all this festive fun!

Invitations: The English Pea Studio
Photography: Split Second Photography
Decor/Balloons/Party Favors: Oriental Trading Company
Plates/Napkins: birthdaydirect.com
Frame/grass/little animals: Hobby Lobby
Cake: Nicole Coleman

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Chicken Sauce Piquante

Thanks to my family's neighbor and friend, Pam Hurst, for giving my mom this recipe so many years ago. I am sure this is a variation of how she makes it, but it has become a family fave and I fix it on a pretty regular basis.

It is really good and fairly easy to make. It has a nice kick, along with a rich red sauce and freezes oh so well. Serve over rice, over bisquits, or just plain - spicy or mild - this recipe will definitely please your palet.

Chicken Sauce Piquante
1. Make roux (equal parts oil and flour - I usually do 2 tbl of each)
2. Add to roux
-1 cup onion
-1/2 cup celery
-1/2 cup bell pepper (love red, but can use green)
Cook 10-15 minutes until tender add a couple cloves of minced garlic.
3. Add small can of tomato paste (8oz). Cook until cooked into veggies.
4. Add chicken broth (2-4 quarts). Thickness should be like syrup.
5. Add chicken (1-2 cups of shredded precooked chicken) to soup. Season with salt garlic salt, sugar, and hot sauce (to taste). Heat to boiling and then simmer with lid on 30 minutes to an hour.

Serve over rice, bisquits, or eat plain. Freezes well.

Bon Apetite!

Monday, May 16, 2011

oh so sad...

So Friday I had a great little ensemble of photos that I downloaded from the ole camera - our first trip to the pool this year, some pretty pictures of fruit from our recent Farmers Market Basket, some sweet pictures of Doug and Charlotte, and some pics of chicken stock I had made. After downloading them I went to the program on my computer where they would have been stored and they weren't there. They also had been erased from my camera. Oh, was I sad! Sigh, what to do but get over it and try to figure out what happened... so it doesn't happen again. So if my posts this week seem a little blah, it is because darn technology let a sister down. :)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


With all the gorgeous weather we have been having, the kids request almost daily to eat their lunch outside. It thrills me that they love to be outdoors so much and there really is something special about eating a picnic surrounded by nature. Hope you find a moment this week to bask in a little sunshine and enjoy a tasty treat!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

gifts galore

We have had birthdays coming out of the woodwork. We love celebrating our friends, but when they all hit at the same time, I have to start getting creative. I must admit that this wealth of birthday fun has made me a big fan of the dollar store. And lest you think me too cheap, I generally think it is a wonderful idea. You all know how expensive toys are, and when there are multiple gifts to be purchased, a nice gift of $20 a piece five to seven times over in a month adds up really quick.

The great thing about these colorful buckets is that I could quickly personalize them with a paint pen, label all of their things, and drop a few personalized notecards in with the gift (they are not pictured with the ensemble above). Seriously, though, what little boy or girl doesn't enjoy an afternoon flying a kit, playing with sand and water toys, or a water pistol for that matter. For littles, these items are just perfect for a day of play.

So... next time you are scrambling to find a reasonably priced gift, remember the ole dollar store. You can't go wrong. :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

b l e s s e d

My Mother's Day weekend was full - full of happiness, treats, discipline (because unfortunately it must be done), and play time, snuggling with my little guy, talking princess with my little girl, date night with the hubby, a nice relaxing afternoon, park time, and a pancake dinner (with my fave wine, I might add).

I am truly blessed to have these little munchkins and the man that gave them to me. Not to mention a momma that I "rise up and call bless-ed!" So Happy Mother's Day to all you out there. Remember that you don't have to be a momma to bless others like a momma can. :)

Oh, and just to humor you, the wine was given to start the weekend and the Amaretto liquor - for my fave beverage - an Amaretto Sour (plus a pedicure gift certificate from the hubs). Guess the fam thinks relaxing a little with my favorite beverage is in my best interest. :)Hope your Mother's Day was filled with joy!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Friday's Find

With Mother's Day this weekend, this photograph immediately caught my attention - bath salts. Now what doesn't sound more relaxing and wonderful than a warm bath, with aromatic bath salts working their magic in a candlelit room with your fave glass of wine? As you can see I am pretty easy to please and this simply would hit the spot. Check out more of For Strange Women's things over at their shop. If her things don't make you want to buy, they will certainly make you want to slip mysteriously into a little world of your own. :)
Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Have you seen...


and this?

I just added them to the shop this week - sibling personalized calling cards (what a novel idea) and water bottle labels (but they could honestly be used for anything). And if you want to check out the ADORABLE party these cute little labels adorned, see it here. Can I come next time? :)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


At the beginning of the year Doug and I took Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace Seminar. It was grueling, enlightening, encouraging, and discouraging all at the same time. Doug and I thankfully had financially wise parents as examples and decided to follow suit, but that doesn't mean that there haven't been things here and there that we could have done better. Nonetheless, we decided to get even more proactive with our budget and started a few of the things he encourages in his seminar - one being startings commissions with the kids.

You might think that Douglass Charles and Charlotte are too young to understand saving and earning money, and in some respects I would agree. But, Doug and I decided we would try a little project with the kiddos.

We gave them three chores a piece that they had to complete every day and at the end of each week, if they completed those chores they would get paid. It was a very small amount, but they were all about it.

I honestly was surprised at how Charlotte took to the whole thing. She had a goal in mind - her Jessie doll - and if she didn't want to do her chore/s that day I would just remind her of her goal. After several long weeks she finally had enough - with some other money she had saved - to buy her doll.

Douglass Charles followed her example (and we weren't quite as strict with him - he also earned less money per week because of this), but they both, in their own way got it.

I think I was prouder of Charlotte when she handed her "monies" over to the cashier at Walmart that day, than she was excited about the doll. And hopefully, all her hard work will stick with her. I pray she and Douglass Charles both capture at a very young age the value and responsibility that comes with money and can dodge some of the pitfalls and mistakes that we have made.

Monday, May 2, 2011


So you may remember that this time last year I was rolling out a few new designs - like my popular cowboy boot, May flowers, and the timid lion. This year, well, I am slacking in the new design department, sort of...

Since Christmas time I have had a series of custom orders, these adorable invitations were just a few, but there have been logos, cupcake toppers, water bottle labels, and a few other things. These little projects have kept me busy and time for "new" creations for myself just haven't been able to happen. Honestly, though, I have LOVED this custom direction my business has taken me as of late. So much so that I have begun to wonder if I should offer it in my shop. The other thing I have realized is that while I LOVE paper, my true passion is design. I love everything about it.

So, I would love to have your input. What do you think about having a "custom" listing available for you - or anyone else out there who might be interested? Inquiring minds want to know. :)