Thursday, October 28, 2010

Yummy Mummy Halloween Party Favor/Hostess Gift

I’ve been drooling over these Yummy Mummy Halloween Cookie Suckers ever since this was posted over at  With Halloween just a few days away now, I finally decided to make them.  Let me tell you, I cannot believe how SIMPLE these are, and so stinkin’ cute!  You’ve got to try them!  These would be perfect as favors for the guests at your Halloween bash, or even as a gift for the host of a party you’ll be attending this weekend.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Thanks To You!

Well, it’s official – is one week old today!  To everyone who has followed me, subscribed to the blog, reposted ideas, tried out projects, and have just been supportive in general, I thank you.  Thanks to you, will continue to grow, and I am so excited for what’s in store. 

I’ve had so much fun celebrating’s launch by posting every single day during this past week!  Starting next week, I’ll begin the regular schedule of two posts a week (Make It Monday and Whatever Wednesday the first week, then Serve It Up Tuesday and Party Time Thursday the following week, then Monday and Wednesday again, etc).  But, I’ve got one more Halloween post tomorrow for a super cute party favor idea that I just couldn’t resist trying out.

You’re invited to continue to join me here to find your celebration inspiration.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Serve It Up Tuesday: Spooky Halloween Drinks

Whether you’re throwing a big bash with all your friends this Halloween, or just spending it with your family, these spooky drink tricks will be a fun treat!

Make It Glow!
Photo courtesy of

Add tonic water to your beverages so they’ll glow under the black light!  Simple cocktails like gin or vodka tonics are perfect for this, or for a twist on this traditional drink, try one of these versions, instead:

The Ghost:  Blue Curacao and tonic

Bleeditini:  Vodka, grenadine, lemon juice and tonic

Gravedigger:  Vodka, Kahlua and tonic

For a kid-friendly version, try substituting about a third to half of the water called for in powdered or frozen drink mixes to make them glow, like they did over at  Keep in mind that tonic water does have a bitter taste, so you may want to experiment with the amount you add to make sure you still like the taste in the end.

Add Some Blood!

For a fun twist on any drink, just add blood!  Ew, not your own blood!  Try this instead:

Mix three tablespoons of corn syrup with ¼ teaspoon of red food coloring, or enough to get that “freshly drawn” color.  Dip the rim of each cocktail glass into the mixture, and slowly spin the glass to coat it.  Turn the glass upright and the blood will begin to drip slightly, then set.  The best part is that this trick works on cocktails AND mocktails, so you can use this one for the underage crowd.  Even something as simple as lemon-lime soda will look more creepy if the glass it’s served in is dripping blood.

Play with Color!

There are so many ways color can make your cocktails, but here are just a few examples:

Add Midori or Apple Pucker liqueurs for a green concoction worthy of being called a Witches Brew.

Red sangria is a quick and easy drink that you can make ahead of time, but you can still give it a creepy name… a glass of Organ Donor, anyone?

Black gin and black vodka are a fabulous twist on the traditional.  Cocktails made with these darkened spirits can be served up as Black Magic Martinis.



Monday, October 25, 2010

Make It Monday: Foam Tombstones

It’s Make It Monday here at, and today we’re talking tombstones!  Remember those frightening tombstones you saw in yesterday’s post about outdoor Halloween decorations?  

I’d been dreaming of these ever since I saw them made on a Halloween special on HGTV several years ago.  Now that we finally have a yard to decorate, I couldn’t wait to try it out!
You’ll need the following materials and tools:
  • Insulation foam – buy the 1.5” or 2” thick foam available at home improvement stores.  You’ll need a 2 ft. x 2 ft. square for each tombstone.
  • Wooden dowels, cut into 8-10” lengths
  • Drill and drill bit in same size as dowels
  • Serrated knife
  • Grey and black spray paint
  • Black permanent markers
  • Black acrylic craft paint
  • Small paintbrushes for lettering and details
Start by drawing the tombstone outline onto the foam.  Search for images online for inspiration.  Cut out each tombstone using a serrated knife.  Enjoy the foam “snow” that will cover you from head to toe.

Next, lightly paint the tombstones with grey spray paint, then accent with black spray paint to get a weathered stone look.  While this is drying, start sketching out what you want each tombstone to say.  Again, you can search online for inspiration, or come up with your own clever ones.  We even used silly references to tv shows we watch in coming up with ours!  Once the spray paint is dry, add the lettering and details you’ve decided on with black permanent markers, black paint, or a combination of both!  I started out hand-painting each letter, but quickly grabbed my trusty Marks-A-Lot when I realized how time consuming painting was going to be.  Once I’d drawn on the basic lettering, I went back to add more detail with the paint, including the drips and the faux cracks in the stone.

Finally, using a drill bit the same width as the dowels, drill holes into the bottom of the tombstone – make sure they are straight in, otherwise your dowels will poke out through the side.  Insert the dowels into the holes, then into the ground.  I had to use my drill again here to drill holes into the hard Arizona soil for the dowels to go into.

And that’s it!  While this project does take some time initially, it’s super simple and inexpensive to make, and will last year after year.

To see HGTV’s full tutorial on these foam tombstones, click here.  Now go make it!


Sunday, October 24, 2010

It's Spooky Out There!

My husband and I bought our first home about this time last year, and we’ve been here ever since.  However, settling in and getting used to keeping up a home, inside and out, took priority, and we never really had a chance to decorate the outside of our home for the holidays.  That’s why this Halloween I was determined to add some spooky touches to our front yard - I just didn’t want to spend too much time or money in the process!  What I ended up with was both simple and inexpensive – take a look!

Remember the creepy dollar store skeleton head that got a makeover last week?  Well, I went back and bought all his friends to make up the black skull lined walkway.  I just skipped the last step of adding glitter this time, since I was feeling lazy wanted to keep them shiny instead.  By the way, I’d like to mention here that when you do find super cheap decorations like this, buy them all up!  If you only buy one or two, you’ll wish you had more.  On my second trip to the dollar store, I had a minor panic attack when I thought the rest of the hideous skulls were gone, only to discover they’d just been moved.  Phew!  When you buy a lot of them, I guarantee you’ll find something to do with them.  Be sure to explain this theory to your dear family, or they’ll wonder why you’re walking in with three bags of skulls…

Anyway, these heads happened to have a hole in the bottom of them already, so I just stuck in a bamboo skewer and hot glued it into place before they were painted by my sweet hubby.  I pushed them into the ground along the sidewalk, then positioned the foam tombstones into place and accented with the ever popular spider web-in-a-bag.  See?  Simple and inexpensive outdoor Halloween decorations, just in time for trick or treaters next weekend.

Check back tomorrow to learn how to make the tombstones yourself!


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sneak Pink

If you liked the bright fuchsia accents seen in the last Party Time Thursday post, then you’ll love this Christmas wreath that I’ll be adding to my etsy shop this weekend.  Here’s a “sneak pink”!   
I love how whimsical it is!  And this bow… 

So pretty and sparkly!  And check out the bright pink ornaments and cute little butterflies that adorn the wreath, too!

You know you want one!  This wreath will be up on my etsy shop by tomorrow night, which you can visit at



Friday, October 22, 2010

Eek! We have spiders! And they’re made of hot glue!

Add some eerie cobwebs around your house tonight, armed with only your hot glue gun and some parchment paper.

Search online for a cobweb image you like.  If you want to trace the image, print it and shrink/enlarge to the size you want.  Or you can just draw it freehand with the glue.  It’s ok if it’s not perfect, I don’t think glue spiders worry about that sort of thing.  Plug in your glue gun and set out a piece of parchment paper at your kitchen counter workstation.  Wax paper, foil and plastic wrap will NOT work instead of parchment paper – trust me.  If you’re tracing the image, arrange it beneath the paper.  Once your glue is ready to use, start drawing your web.  I started from the corner/center and drew lines out, then filled in with the swoopy lines going across.

Peel the web off the parchment paper once it’s cool and press it onto your windows or mirrors, with the bumpy side to the glass.  I suppose the spiders are optional, but if you want to add them for that extra eek factor, follow the same instructions as above.  I used a purple glue stick for the spiders and started by swirling a dot of glue for the body, then swooping legs out from it.  Glue spiders aren’t worried about their figures, either, so they can be a little messy.  Nestle them right into the web once they’re cool.  Or, just add a little extra glue to the web and stick a plastic spider right into it, like I did on this vase.  It's important to note that you should not hot glue directly onto the glass.

And that’s it!  A super simple, inexpensive way to add a little more to your Halloween décor.  You’re friends are going to be so jealous that you have spiders and they don’t.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Glamorous Ghouls?

It’s Party Time Thursday here at, where I share some super cute party ideas with you.  With Halloween a mere week away, it’s the perfect chance to show you my favorite Halloween trend this year, “ghoulish glam”.  As anyone who knows me will tell you, I am a huge fan of sparkle.  I don’t believe one can have too much sparkle.  In fact, I don’t even think there is such a thing as too much sparkle, which is exactly why I’m obsessed with this hot Halloween idea.

Instead of going for the usual orange and black party décor at your party this year, try an all black color palette, or even black and silver, and be sure to add some sparkle for a spooktacular twist on the traditional theme.  Check out how Ciao Bella took some ordinary pumpkins and turned them into a magnificent black and silver glittered pumpkin centerpiece here!

Simply Stated, a blog from, posted about this trend a couple years back.  They show some stylish black items you can purchase to glam up your own ghoul fest, including my personal fave, the luxurious black feather boa.  Use a boa as a decorative garland on staircases, mantels and shelves, or to add sophistication to a centerpiece or food display.  You can find boas like this at your local craft store any time of year (be sure to search for coupons online before you go!) or at any of the Halloween shops you’ve seen popping up in your neighborhood lately.  Click here to see Simply Stated take on Gothic Glam!

For an uber-chic twist on your glam Halloween, consider mixing in touches of hot pink with the black.  I’m in. love. with. the fuchsia accents seen over at Hostess with the Mostess and Entertain Exchange.  Entertain Exchange uses a lot of items that you probably already have, or can pick up on the cheap at the big box stores (or craft stores, with your printed coupons), embellished with some inexpensive holiday items.  Hostess with the Mostess reveals some easy ways to incorporate the chic pink into your party décor without having to spend a lot of cash.  Click here to see the Ghoul’s Night Halloween Party at Hostess with the Mostess or the Glam Gothic Girls Night Out Party at Entertain Exchange.

On my most recent trip to the dollar store, I found these hideous skeleton heads.

 I wanted to see just how simple it would be to glam this guy up.  I started with a coat of glossy black spray paint and let dry for a half hour.  When I checked on it, it needed just a little more coverage, so I did a light second coat and let it dry another half hour.  He turned out very glossy!  Kind of Darth Vaderish… and if you like, you could just leave him like this, and he would be totally appropriate as glam décor.

But it’s not really my style to “leave it at that”, so I gathered up my black glitter and spray adhesive and went at it.  I sprayed the entire head with adhesive, then started sprinkling glitter onto it over a large bowl (to catch the excess glitter).  Once he was entirely coated in glitter, I patted it down with my hand just to make the glitter really stick to the adhesive.  Now he’s a scary, sparkling wonder!

Aside from drying time, turning this guy from hideous to glamorous only took about a half hour – so simple, which I love.

If you decide to use any of these ideas for your own bash, I’d love to see pictures!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

welcome to!

Hello and welcome to!  My name is Betsey, and I’m so happy you stopped by. is all about celebration, and was started when I realized that I needed to celebrate more in life.  As a former corporate event planner that obsessed over work, I know all about working too hard and playing too little.  When department budget cuts left me without a job, it was the perfect opportunity to make a change.  And so began my quest to find more reasons to celebrate and enjoy life every day.

The first step was to find a better way to make a living that satisfied my need for creativity.  Enter is sooo Betsey, combining the things I love – gifts, events and all things celebration.  I wanted my business to be the ultimate reflection of myself, and that made me want to be a better person.  I now have this dynamic company that’s growing right along with me, and I couldn’t be more proud. 

Which brings me to this blog.  This is where Betsey and come together.  I hope that with each post, you’ll find some celebration inspiration to take with you.  Join me for Make It Mondays, where I’ll show you a great DIY project that will make you jump for joy!  On Serve It Up Tuesdays, you’ll find simple food and drink ideas to serve at your next celebration.  Whatever Wednesdays will offer randomness at its finest, covering whatever wonderfulness I’m into at the moment.  Party Time Thursdays will show super cute party ideas that you can try out yourself.  I’ll also feature guest bloggers from time to time, as well as sneak peeks at amazing projects that takes on. 

So take a look around, and stop back anytime for a dose of celebration.  I think we can all benefit from finding more reasons to celebrate every day. is that place where it’s ok to celebrate, to look for things to be excited about, to look for reasons to have fun in life.  I like to think that is serving up celebrations.

And speaking of celebrations, I’ll be celebrating’s launch by posting every single day for the next week!  You’ll get a good idea from these posts about what you can expect from, so be sure to follow or subscribe so you don’t miss out!