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Best Valentine’s Day Treats

16 Jan

Valentine’s Day Treats

sugar-cookies

Valentine’s Day is a month away!  Valentine’s Day is a great time to let someone know how much you love them.  While we’re still in a pandemic, it’s more important than ever to reach out to friends and loved ones.  I think a homemade Valentine is a great gift.  Why not make your special someone homemade Valentine cookies with messages?  We have a terrific recipe from when we were featured on WGN-TV.  Of course, these look amazing in our personalized Valentine’s Day gable boxes.  They are the perfect treat to leave on a doorstep!  You could also fill the boxes with candy and little love notes.

The recipe below is also featured on our website in our Studio Insights.  You can find all types of tips from writing etiquette, personalized napkin tips to party accents.  

 

 

Sugar Cookie Recipe

Photo credit: Pinterest

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 egg
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and egg.  Combine dry ingredients in separate bowl.  Add to butter mixture and mix to combine.  Roll out dough between two sheets of parchment to ¼ inch thickness.  Chill for 1 hour to overnight.  Cut into shapes and place on parchment lined baking sheet.  Chill again for 15-20 .  Bake at 350 for 7 minutes, rotate pans, then bake for approximately 3 minutes more until cookies are just beginning to turn golden brown.  Cool on wire racks until completely cool.

Cookie Glaze

3 ¾ – 4 cups powdered sugar
6 Tablespoons whole milk
1 tsp almond flavoring
6 Tablespoons corn syrup

Combine powdered sugar, milk, and flavoring.  Mix until smooth.  Add corn syrup.  Stir until combined and smooth.  If desired, add paste food coloring.

Tips

  • Chilling sugar cookie dough for rolled and cut sugar cookies hardens the butter in the dough so that the cookie dough rolls out more easily.  After cutting the cookies, you can chill them again so that the cookies retain their shape while baking.
  • Instead of store bought frosting, take time to make a cookie glaze which makes cookies look professional, smooth and dries hard for decorating.
  • Use paste food coloring to make vibrant colors for cookies.  Liquid food coloring may change consistency of glaze or royal frosting.  Experiment by combining different colors to make unique shades.
  • For a clean edge on the cookie, outline with royal frosting, then fill in with cookie glaze.  This stops the glaze from running down the sides of the cookie.
  • Great tip for decorating:  Use a squeeze bottle to “fill” surface with glaze.  Spread glaze to corners with toothpick or small knife.  You can purchase bottle at any craft store or Wal-Mart
  • Once the glaze is dry (can take several hours) decorate cookies with a pastry bag for a professional look.  Pastry bags are available at any craft store or in a pinch use a zip-loc bag.
  • Experiment with different types of sprinkles, sugars, and decorations.  For instance, make a border with pearl candies or large sprinkles and/or use sanding sugar for a sparkling effect.

Enjoy!

xoxo,

Jennifer

2021 Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

8 Jan

All You Need is L-O-V-E

With a little planning, Valentine’s Day can be just as special this year.  In fact, during a pandemic we could all use a little extra L-O-V-E right now.  We’ve put together some fun ideas to help you celebrate with family and friends.

For Kids

If your kids are still attending school in-person, Valentine’s Day exchange cards are still the go-to.  Personalized exchange cards are not only *extra*, but they are easy!  Just add a sweet treat and you’re done. If you’re not in-person, exchange cards are still a fun way to send a Valentine’s Day greeting to their friends and family.  Here are some of our favorite cards for 2021.

We love the Like the Way You Roll exchange card for a few reasons.  It’s gender neutral and oh-so-cute with the sushi theme.  We love the subtle nod to the pandemic with “the way you roll.”  You really can’t go wrong with this on-trend card.  Why not attach some cute gummy sushi candies to this exchange card to complete the theme?

The Pizza My Heart exchange card is so fun because … who doesn’t love pizza?  No matter what your favorite topping is, this card is sure to please everyone.

The Stuck on You exchange card is on-trend with all things cactus.  This would make a great card to attach to a succulent plant as a gift for a teacher, a neighbor or best friend.

For Neighbors & Friends

If you’re thinking about a sweet treat to give neighbors and friends on Valentine’s Day, why not bake some cookies to gift?  We have a great recipe for Valentine’s Day sugar cookies that would make a great treat to leave on doorsteps.  You can put your homemade treats in personalized gift boxes or personalized gift bags.  Add your own sweet note to make their day.

 

For Loved Ones Far Away


Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to send someone special a handwritten letter.  Take the time to tell them how much you love and appreciate them!  This is also the perfect time to reach out to loved ones that may be isolated during the pandemic and not able to have much contact.

 

For Someone Special

 

Not sure what to gift that someone special in your life?  We have great personalized gift ideas for men and women. Personalized wine glasses make a great Valentine’s gift idea.  Just add their favorite bottle of wine and you have a great gift you can enjoy that evening!

Working from home during the pandemic? Why not give them a personalized sticky memo cube that’s both practical and stylish (and hint-hint … maybe encourages them to write little love notes!)?

We’d love to hear your ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day this year.  Please share in the comments below!

XO,

Jennifer

10 Tips on Writing a Love Letter

1 Jan

With Valentine’s Day coming up, love is definitely in the air. Are you doing anything special for your sweetheart this year?  If you think it’s a bit hard to voice the words in person, why not write a letter? A letter is something your special someone will keep and cherish. A tweet or a snap disappears easily but a written note can be forever.  So send that special letter to seal your feelings.  It will be very meaningful.

If you are not sure what to say, we have 10 tips for you.

  1. Be genuine.  Whatever your emotions are, express them from the heart in a genuine way.
  2. So you’re not Shakespeare, big deal.   Well, don’t worry, we all have our skills.  Any message you craft from the heart will be special.
  3. Make yourself a cheat sheet. Plan what you want to write before putting pen to paper to avoid ruining your heartfelt note and having to start over.
  4.  It’s all in the details.  Give a couple details about why you adore this person and perhaps include a special memory.
  5. Make it pretty.  Find the perfect, hopefully personalized stationery or letter sheet or valentine and use your best penmanship with a good quality pen (never typed!). Little details make the difference.

    source: TheStationeryStudio.com

  6. Size doesn’t matter. Your note can be as long or short as needed.  If your personality is more “to the point”, then that’s your style.  If you want to elaborate and capture detailed thoughts and feelings, well, you have your platform.  If you love to wax nostalgic, then so be it, and put the memories on paper.  It’s your canvas so create your own masterpiece.
  7. Look to the future.  End your note with how you look forward to the future and why.
  8. Mailed or Given?  Well, either way is great.  If you want a big surprise in their mailbox (or if you are too shy) then mailing is a great option.  Or, perhaps you want to plan a special date for dinner or drinks or coffee where you can present the card for you both to share together. Or, surprise them with a note on their pillow or breakfast table.
  9. Love letters don’t always have to be romantic. It’s a beautiful idea to  send your children or close friends a special note about why you love them. Let them know why you love them, how proud you are of them, give specific examples and let them know you are there for them.
  10. The letter is enough.  A personal note is a way to give a part of your heart to your special someone.  That’s the best gift you can give. You don’t really need big boxes of chocolates or candies or dozens of roses.  But, if you’re feeling generous, why not!

Happy letter writing,

Renee

Photo credits:  CountryLiving.com, TheStationeryStudio.com