Monday, December 27, 2010

Decisions, decisions

I haven't posted since October and instead of giving a bunch of excuses I'll sum it up by saying I've been busy.  Busy working full-time, busy being a mom, busy being a wife, busy being a friend, busy trying to figure out if I'm happy doing what I'm doing or if I need to do more or maybe even less.  I look at some people and I have to ask myself, "How the hell do they do it?"  I mean seriously.  How do they manage to have a successful business of their own, have multiple kids (more than 2), a husband, appear to manage old friendship and create new ones all while seeming to appear completely unflappable like it's so easy to do. 

Obviously I'm missing something.  Maybe it's not meant for me to have my own business but at some point I thought it was a very good idea.  Maybe I shouldn't pursue my graduate degree but at some point that was all I could think about.  I know for a fact that I need to lose 50 pounds and that will not go away no matter how much I try to ignore that spanx are a permanent part of my wardrobe.  Instead of being so scattered, trying to accomplish everything, I should focus on one or two things. I just need to decide where my focus should be.  Not to make anyone else happy or impress anyone but to make me happy.  Wow, wouldn't that be a novel idea?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Who is on your board of directors?

In the October 2010 issue of Essence magazine they focused on women having power in the work place.  One of the articles that jumped out at me was "The 5 People You Need to Have on Your Personal Board of Directors".  As I read the different types of people that you should have, my mind immediately thought of one or two people who already fill one or two of the positions.  The article suggests the following people:

  1. The Company Veteran 
  2. The Spiritual Adviser
  3. The Reality Checker 
  4. The Industry Insider 
  5. The Fun Seeker 
I'm fortunate to have these people in my life.  Do you?  No matter what your profession is, you need to have these people in place to help you learn about the company, keep you in prayer, look at things from a different perspective, keep you abreast of what's new and help you blow off some steam.  If you have have your board of directors in place but haven't formally acknowledged them, let them know how important of a part they play in your professional and personal development.  You might make someone's day a little brighter.  You might even find out that you are on their board of directors too.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Kick In the Pants (a much-need one I might add)

So after not posting a single entry for months, I have burst of energy like I haven't felt in well, months.  I went to an awesome Administrative Professional conference this past week in Las Vegas and was inspired to do and be better.  The ladies that I met weren't your typical 9 to 5, just give me my check types...they were truly professionals who loved doing what they do.  Now granted, was I excited beyond comprehension to get away from my kids and husband for a week?  Heck yeah! But I had no idea I would learn so much. 

In the last few days I've installed TweetDeck (based on the recommendation of the awesome Will Paccione -, bought a web domain ( and I'm playing around with ideas for what to name my jewelry line.  Not to mention all of the things that I want to do professionally like getting certified and taking some graduate certificate course.  Talk about a spark of creativity! I wish I could thank everyone personally but I'll start with Peggy Vasquez (  Her positive spirit was infectious and she had a smile that lit up the room.  She could have been the snobby type, her title and credentials allow her to be but somehow I don't think she's that type of person.  I met a bunch of ladies like that.  Women who are willing to help out, reach back and pull up the ones coming up behind them. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Life Happens

When I first started my blog I told myself that I would blog everyday with infomation about everything from planning parties and great home products.  Well, I quickly realized that blogging is alot harder that it appears and I just don't have the time to blog daily....hence the month-long break.  I love anything to do with planning a social event, great ideas on how to run my household more efficiently and anything to empower women in all aspects of their lives and I want to share it with as many people as possible.  So from now on I'll be blogging once a week.  I hope you continue to come back and visit.

Monday, April 19, 2010

All Things Purple!

Purple, in any shade, is my favorite color. Left to my own devices, my entire house would be decorated in shades of purple or with purple accents. At a party or a wedding, purple adds drama to a room and makes the guest of honor feel like royalty.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cherry Blossoms

National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, DC draws millions of visitors from all over the world and I know why, they are breathtaking and beautiful.  Here's some inspiration for this beautiful theme that can be used for a bridal shower, baby shower, wedding or birthday. The pink and brown color scheme is still very popular and can be used in both informal and formal settings.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Welcome to the Greatest Show on Earth!

Children's parties are so much fun to plan and decorate for. Your imagination is your only limitation. This creative mom planned a circus-theme party for her one year old. Brown lunch bags filled with an animal shaped sandwich, a piece of fruit and a plush animal were sealed with round labels that matched the decor on the centerpieces and banner. The centerpieces were photos of the birthday boy throughout the first year of his life and the take home snack were boxes of animal crackers. Makes you wish you were kid again, doesn't it?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

New Party Products

Nothing excites me more than new party products. Here are just a few new products that can spice up your next event.

First row from left to right:

  • Completely edible Dazzle Pops--lollipops garnished with glitter by Bedazzle My BonBons.
  • A DYI delight--the new Chandelier Centerpiece Kit from Decorative Novelty takes only minutes to assemble.
  • New eco-friendly freeze-dried petals from Flyboy Naturals won't stain but will biodegrade.

Second row from left to right:
  • The new four-light candelabrum from Home Decoration Accessories offers an affordable yet sophisticated look suitable for contemporary and traditional decor--and it's easy to set up.
  • Cute, custom party favor packets from Pic-a-Pak give parties personality.
  • New Event Cubes from Ultimate Bars run off a totally cordless LED lighting system in 16 color choices; the cubes can be changed from square to round to hexagonal.

Monday, April 12, 2010

BBQ Rehearsal Dinner

Although BBQ season is a few months away, I could not resist this idea of having a BBQ Rehearsal Dinner. With the summer months still being very popular time of the year to get married, a BBQ is a perfect way to get family and friends together for a relaxed meal after the wedding rehearsal.

The menu included firecracker barbecue country-style ribs, French fries, old-fashioned summer potato salad, hamburgers, and grilled Utah sweet corn on the cob.

Bottles of Jones Soda ( in the couple’s wedding colors.

The groom designed and printed the red-and-blue menu cards. The casual typefaces and design perfectly fit the laid-back rehearsal dinner vibe.

Potted red geraniums served as dinner table centerpieces. The couple sent the blooms home with family at the end of the evening.

The favors were super-personal: the bride and groom filled vintage-style tins with their families’ favorite recipes. They ordered the tins online, added big, red, vinyl letters to the front of each, and printed the recipe cards themselves.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tasty Treats

A great party depends on the location, the music and most importantly the food! Once you have chosen a menu that will be talked about adoringly for years after your party is over, there is still one thing left to give your guests…a sweet treat. Beyond the wedding or birthday cake, the tasty treats below are a perfect finish to a fabulous party.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Double Duty Centerpieces

The best way to save money is to make your centerpieces work double time. During the event they serve as beautiful additions to your decor. When the event ends, they break apart to become favors for your guests. This idea works for any type of special event but even more so for weddings and baby showers.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Candy Land

Who doesn't love candy and other sweet treats? Candy was the inspiration for this party created by Kate Landers Events, LLC. The guest of honor's favority color was purple (my kind of girl!) so the decor, dessert and candy revolved around that one color.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

You Light Up My Life

No matter how small or big an event is, lighting plays a huge part in the decor and ambiance of the venue. Over the last couple of years, florists and event planners have found new and innovative ways to add light to the decor.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

New Blog Just for Events!

I've started a new blog dedicated entirely to planning and designing weddings and social events.  Hope you come visit me at

I will continue to post on this blog about all things fabulous for the home and great products for the family.  While I love planning events, I'm Always Ayanna ;-)

See you soon,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Pink and Brown Baby Shower

Chic, sophisticated, stylish, classy and just all around fabulous. Creative Hostess found this pink and brown color scheme for a baby shower is gorgeous from top to bottom. Created by Eye Candy Events, everything says, “Girly”. Creative touches like Cookie Mixes as favors, marshmallow pops and cupcakes topped with marshmallows makes this event deliciously sweet.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Olivia-inspired Valentine's Day Party

The owner of Heavenly Blooms based in Los Angeles created this "Olivia" inspired Valentine's Day party for her daughter.  I think it's just a fabulous way to incorporate your child's favorite character into the theme and design for her party.

A feather boa wreath attached to the chandlier dresses up an otherwise boring light fixture and set the mood for the party.

Pom poms hanging from the ceiling and decorating the table

A dramatic setting for viewing an Olivia movie.  Olivia would have loved this party.

Favor boxes included different types of red candy and a little bit of boa material.

Glitterly red playdoh made at home, placed in store bought containers and decorated with ribbon and a label.

Everything was red, even the beverages!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Time To Organize

I'm a big fan of being organized.  I don't always practice what I preach, I love sharing ideas with others that may help them with organizational issues around their homes.  The Container Store is one of my favorite stores to shop for storage items.  The website is full of ideas and the one of the best products that they sell (in my opinion) is elfa. The products are versatile and can be used in every room of your home.

Here are some of the ideas from their website:

Arts, crafts, games and books are a snap to organize with elfa Hanging Drawers. This freestanding unit provides storage right where you need it and offers a wealth of drawers and even a shelf on top to keep your family neat and organized.  The small mesh allows you to see what is inside while preventing small items from falling through.  Click here for pricing information

For classrooms, playrooms, bedrooms - even closets - elfa Mesh Drawers are one of the best solutions for getting organized. The tight mesh material keeps small items from falling through while at the same time providing just enough visibility of the contents. Label holders help you remember where items belong.

It's all fun and games when you're organized with elfa. It's the perfect solution for storing board games, toys, coloring books, and craft supplies in the family or game room. Platinum Mesh Drawers provide ample storage space for items that kids need easy access to. The fine weave mesh baskets keeps small items from falling through. This configuration requires a minimum of 84" of an 8' high wall.  Click here for pricing information

Spark your creative energy with an organized elfa closet and storage solutions from The Container Store®. Flexible Shelves and Drawers accommodate all types of art and craft supplies, so your materials are always close at hand. A rolling cart is the ideal solution for a mobile gift wrap center. You'll have more time for creative no time!  Click here for pricing information

Cabinet-Sized elfa Mesh Drawers are just right for shallow spaces like pantries. At only 17-1/4" deep, they fit most spaces. The drawers provide ample space for storing all you ingredients, and the melamine top provides a place to store larger items.  Click here for pricing information

Friday, January 29, 2010

Valentine's Day Ideas

I'm about thinking Valentine's Day already.  Most specifically, dinner.  If given the opportunity to host a small dinner party, here are some of the things I would include:

These votives can be used everywhere from the foyer, to the buffet table to the dinner table.  If you really want to carry your theme throughout the house, put a few in the powder room as well.

Welcome your guests to a wonderful night filled with laughter, great conversation and delicious food with this beautiful-looking and great-tasting cocktail.

Why settle for plain table cards? Use this favor box for both seating arrangements and sending your guests home with something sweet.

Break up the redness of Valentine's Day with a beauiful pewter or platinum colored silver tablecloth.

Using unusual vessels to serve different courses of a meal keeps it interesting.  Here, the Crab Salad is served in dessert bowl.

Who can resist Surf & Turf?

What a better way to end a meal that with fresh strawberries dipped in a decadent chocolate?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Craft Cubby

Here's an ingenious way to use an unfinished armoire.  Whether your craft of choice is scrapbooking, sewing, knitting/crocheting, jewelry making, etc, this is great way to store your passion and keep everything in one place.  Slide-out tray, adjustable shelves and drawers can be used as storage, while magazines and other reference materials can be stored in stand-up organizers or stacked on top of the armoire.