Game of Thrones Cocktails

Game of Thrones Cocktails

Only six more days until the Game of Thrones finale! I’m beyond excited for it but also dreading the end of my favorite show… It feels like the show just came back. This past weekend I had the best time coming up with Thrones themed cocktails to make for the finale. After much deliberation, I settled on The Red Wedding (blood orange sangria), The White Walker (Columbian coco loco), The Wildfire (green apple and ginger martini), The John Snow Cone (blackberry lime margarita snowmen), and The Mother of Dragons (prosecco with dragonfruit).  Hope you enjoy these as much as I did!


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Traditional Sangria with Blood Oranges

Ingredients (Serves 4):

  • 1 apple, cored and sliced into small pieces
  • 1 blood orange, rind on, sliced into small pieces
  • 3 – 4 tablespoons sugar or agave
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup brandy or rum
  • 1 750 ml bottle dry red wine

Method:

  1. Place the apples, oranges, and sugar in a large pitcher and muddle with a muddler or wooden spoon.
  2. Add the orange juice and brandy, then muddle again for approximately 30 seconds.
  3. Add the red wine and stir to incorporate, then taste and adjust flavor as needed.
  4. Add ice and serve as is. Garnish with a blood orange segment and wedding cupcake topper (I printed mine and glued it to a toothpick)

 

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Coco Loco (Columbian Coconut Cocktail)

Ingredients (Serves 4):

  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 1/4 cup vodka
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 2 cups coconut cream
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • Juice of 4 limes
  • 2 table spoons sugar or agave

Method:

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend for a few seconds until smooth.
  2. Pour over ice and serve with a blue sprinkle-rimmed glass.

 

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Green Apple Ginger Martini

Ingredients (Serves 4):

  • 1 cup vodka
  • A small piece of ginger, grated
  • 2 large tart green apples (plus an extra for decoration)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • The juice of 3-4 limes
  • 1 tbsp simple syrup (boil equal parts sugar/honey and water until fully dissolved)
  1. Make the ginger infused vodka ahead of time by stirring the grated ginger into the vodka and refrigerating for at least two hours. The longer you leave it, the spicier the ginger flavor will be.
  2. Slice the apples and blend them with the lime juice and water on high speed until smooth. Pour the liquid through a fine mesh strainer to remove any pulp and foam.
  3. Add the apple/lime juice, the vodka, the simple syrup, and ice to a cocktail shaker and shake will before pouring into a chilled martini glass. Garish with a thin apple slice, carved into the shape of a flame and tinted with green food coloring.

 

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Blackberry Lime Margarita Snow Cone

Ingredients (makes 5 1/2 cups of margarita syrup):

  • Ice
  • 6 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup Cointreau
  • 1/2 cup tequila
  • 1/2 cup blackberries
  1. Bring the sugar and water to a boil and stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.
  2. Mix in the alcohol and citrus juices with the sugar water and mix well. Divide in half and chill in the fridge.
  3. Blend the blackberries with 2 tablespoons of water on high speed in a blender until liquified. Pour through a strainer to remove the seeds and mix the blackberry mixture with half of the margarita mixture. Refrigerate that as well.
  4. When you are ready to serve, blend your ice in a powerful blender (or use a snow cone maker if you have one! I believe places like Target sell them?). The ice should be as soft and fluffy as possible.
  5. Fill the glass half full with the blended ice and pour the lemon/lime mixture over it until the ice is fully coated. Then scoop a large ball of ice on top of that and pour the blackberry mixture onto that. Garnish with a blackberry and cocktail sword (or make one with a toothpick and aluminum foil like I did).

 

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Prosecco with Dragonfruit:

Ingredients:

  • Prosecco
  • Dragonfruit

Method:

  1. Use a melon baller to carve out three balls of dragon fruit. Place them in the bottom of a champagne flute.
  2. Pour the chilled prosecco over the fruit and serve immediately.

 

Cheers!

-Kirby

 

Homemade Fruit Gift Wrap

_MG_9902Lately I’ve been obsessed with the idea of making my own gift wrap. While there are so many beautiful options readily available out there, I find that people notice when you’ve taken the time to paint it and that makes the gift all the more special.

In an effort to stretch out the summer, I’ve been going a little crazy with fruit-themed projects before the produce switches into Fall mode (hence The Perfect Fruit TartThailand-Inspired Fresh Fruit Shakes, & Homemade Strawberry Rhubarb Pie). For the upcoming birthday and housewarming presents I’ll be gifting this month, I decided to stick to this theme and make fruit-inspired gift wrap with watercolors and acrylics. I love how colorful and sweet they looked in the end, especially as a group.


Materials:

  • Plain white gift wrap
  • Spray paint (optional, but it’s the ideal paint for your base layer)
  • Watercolors or acrylics
  • Paint brushes (one thick, one thin)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Green ribbon and bows

First, place a large piece of scrap paper or newspaper on the ground to protect from any mess you will make. Then cut the wrapping paper into the sizes of paper you need towrope your gifts. You’ll want to paint them one at a time, so place your first piece on the ground and tape down the edges.

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Going into this project, I already had two colors of spray paint, olive green and pink, so I went ahead and used those to make the base for the watermelon, kiwi, and strawberry papers. Simply spray an even coat over the paper and set aside to dry (for the watermelon, do half of it pink, half green, and leave a fuzzy strip of white in the middle).

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Using watercolors or watered-down acrylics, coat the remaining pieces of paper until completely covered. It may be a little wrinkly from the water (which is why the spray paint is ideal), but those waves will smooth out when you wrap your gift.

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Allow the base coats to dry completely.

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Once dry, you can begin painting details onto the papers. The amount of detail it up to you. I added seeds to the watermelon as well as a few strokes of darker green, I also add seeds to the strawberry and kiwi. I used acrylic to paint the pulp into the orange and lemon papers, and a simple black star to the blueberry. For the grapes, I liked the base enough to leave them alone.

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Once the paper is completely dry, wrap the gifts and decorate with green ribbon. Hope you have as much fun making these as I did!

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Happy wrapping!

-Kirby

The Perfect Fruit Tart

Fruit TartLast week we had to skip our first week of blogging since we launched Glü. Michelle travelled back to L.A. for a visit and the day we planned to make something, we both got job interviews, Michelle had to fly back to San Francisco, and then all of a sudden we were both employed! The chaos led to a slight moment of panic for me but I soon relaxed after everything settled down. This past weekend I was able to spend a warm Sunday afternoon making my favorite summer (or any season really) dessert – this fruit tart – for a game night with family and friends.

The beauty of this recipe is its ability to be both deceptively easy and show-stopping. It can make any amateur baker look like a professional, and can vary in difficulty depending on the variety of fruit you use. Plus this homemade version, with fresh fruit, a vanilla cream cheese filling, and a citrus glaze, is so much better than anything you will find in a grocery store.


Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened and cubed

Filling:

  • 1 8oz package of cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Fresh fruit (I chose raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and kiwi)
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch

Glaze:

  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • Juice of 1 large orange (or two small ones)
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

Preheat your oven to 350º F. In a large bowl, combine the powdered sugar, butter and flour until completely incorporated and you can form a compact ball.

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Press the crust into a buttered tart pan. I only had a deep dish tart pan so I filled the dough half way up the sides, but a shorter one would be much easier. Make sure that the crust is completely even on the base and sides, and use a sharp knife to trim the top of the edges for a cleaner presentation.

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Poke a few holes in the base of the crust and bake in the oven for approximately 15 – 20 minutes, until the crust is a pale golden color around the edges.

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While the crust cools, whisk the cream cheese, vanilla and sugar in a bowl until smooth.

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Then spread the mixture over the cooled crust with the back of a spoon until even.

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Wash your fruit and then go ahead and slice all of the pieces you plan to use. It’s much more enjoyable to have your materials ready so that you can sit down and enjoy the fun part – decorating.

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Now time to get creative! Arrange the fruit however you would like, in pretty circular patterns or stripes. My mom likes to make this tart with just raspberries, the perfect compliment for the cream cheese filling and much easier for those who don’t like the idea of decorating.

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To make the glaze, combine the citrus juices, water and sugar in a small sauce pan. Whisk over low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Then add the cornstarch and whisk quickly until the cornstarch is fully incorporated. Bring the liquid to a rapid boil and then immediately remove from the heat. The glaze should be semi-thick and slightly yellow/orange in color. You can place it in the fridge or freezer to seed up the cooling process.

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Using a kitchen brush, gently coat the fruit with your cooled glaze to add the final glistening touch to this beautiful dessert.

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Serve right away or place in the fridge to eat later.

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Happy baking!

-Kirby

 

Thailand-Inspired Fresh Fruit Shakes

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In April, we treated ourselves to a graduation trip to Thailand. For two weeks, we travelled with our friend Maddy to Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, experiencing a culture that we will never forget. Three months later, we still reminisce daily about the people we met in hostels, the most incredible street food, the bustling markets, the $7 massages, the magnificent temples and the picturesque beaches. Some experiences, like the elephant sanctuary, were so impactful that they have really stayed with us back in our real non-vacationing lives. We’ve been educating our family and friends about the harm of riding elephants, something that neither of us and many other tourists don’t realize.

In the hundred degree humid weather, we found sanctuary in the small street stands on nearly every block that sold fresh fruit shakes. They were just four simple ingredients: fruit, water, ice and sugar, but they were so refreshing and flavorful, the second we finished one we were dying for another. We each had our go-to fruit (Kirby’s watermelon & Michelle’s mango) and we had about three a day, often times along with our Chang beers. It may seem almost comical to share such a simple recipe on this blog, but to keep these delicious drinks to ourselves would be outright selfish.


Ingredients & Materials:

  • 2 cups chopped fruit (your choice!)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Agave
  • Ice
  • A blender

Pick your favorite fruit to make your shake and be sure that it is ripe and in season. We opted for watermelon, pineapple and mango.

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Dice your fruit and remove seeds if necessary. You need about 2 cups of fruit per shake, though you could get away with less if you are using a richer and denser fruit like mango.

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Blend your fruit with a cup of water, a cup of ice and a tablespoon of agave.

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And that’s it!!! So simple. So good. Enjoy!

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Cheers!

-Kirby & Michelle

 

 

Harry Potter Wine Charms

HP (5 of 17)Just recently it was the 20th anniversary of the release of the first Harry Potter book. That blew my mind. Although Harry Potter has been a major part of my life even before I could read, J.K. Rowling’s magical world still feels so fresh and present to me, as if the books came out just yesterday. I don’t even bother pretending I’m not a total Harry Potter geek. Seriously, the intro song still makes me giddy. I remember Christmas when I was six and my mom, in typical Mrs. Weasley fashion, gave my brother and I matching Gryffindor sweaters, I remember dressing up in robes for the book release at our local bookstore, and I remember going to the midnight premieres of the movies in Spanish (we were living in Mexico at the time) and loving them even without understanding them. Everyone should have something that brings out their biggest dopiest smile, like Harry Potter does for me.

So upon realizing that it was the 20th anniversary, I decided it was time to make another Harry Potter craft (check out our sorting hat cupcakes from last year). I’ve combined the wizarding world with one of my other favorite passions: wine nights. These wine charms are super easy to make, the materials are cheap, and I absolutely love them! It’s a subtle way to distinguish your wine glass from others’ and they aren’t so “in your face” Harry Potter so you could get away with saying they are just charms…. shaped like lighting bolts… and broomsticks. I made 12 so I’m keeping half for myself and sending the other half to Michelle. Now that our wine nights will no longer be spent together we’ll have to find new Harry Potter loving friends!


Materials:

  • Harry Potter charms (I found mine here)
  • Jump rings
  • Earring hoops
  • Beads
  • (optional) Paper that looks like parchment
  • (optional) Thin black pen or marker
  • (optional) Card stock
  • (optional) Glue

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Loop the jump rings onto the charms so that they hang the right way. If you use different charms than I did, just check the angle of the charm’s loop to see if you need them.

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String half of the beads onto the earring hoop, then add the charm, and then add the remaining beads.

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Thread the open ended wire through the loop and bend it back over to hold it in place. Repeat with all of the other charms. Seriously, it is that easy!

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As an extra touch, I wrote Harry Potter wine puns (after some serious brainstorming) at the top of parchment colored paper and pinned the final charms to them.

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Glue a slightly smaller piece of card stock to the back so that it is sturdier.

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I opted for “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Wine” and “It’s not wingardium leviosa, it’s wine-gardium leviosa”. Other ideas are “Sherry Potter” and “Moaning Merlot”. I’d love to hear if you guys can come up with any others!

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Happy crafting!

-Kirby

Emoji Lollipops

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Emojis have always held a special place in my heart. They add a little something extra to my digital life and are often the primary reason that I laugh out loud from texts with my friends. From my days recreating emojis with Snapchat’s drawing feature to procrastinating studying for finals to everyday texting with my friends and family, Emojis have always had my back. There is an emoji for pretty much everything and every mood. Can you even imagine a world without them??? (cue eye roll from mom and dad).

As Kirby and I are always looking for new and unique crafts to try for our blog, we absolutely love taking suggestions from our readers. We’d like to give a special shout-out to Diane Estephan for giving us this awesome idea. We had so much fun turning our favorite emoji faces into tasty lemon lollipops to share with everyone. 😍😂😳😉😎


Materials:

  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp lemon flavoring (we used these)
  • Yellow food coloring
  • Candy thermometer
  • Lollipop molds and sticks
  • Royal icing (black, white, red, blue – find our recipe here)
  • Piping bags or ziplock bags

Combine sugar, water, corn syrup, lemon flavoring, and food coloring into a large saucepan over high heat.

 

Stir continuously until mixture is brought to a boil. Insert a candy thermometer and keep stirring until the mixture reaches 310˚F.

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Once the mixture has reached 310˚F, remove the saucepan from the stove and transfer it into another container with a spout (I used a Pyrex measuring cup). Carefully pour the mixture into the lollipop molds. Immediately after, insert the lollipop sticks. It is important not to wait too long as the mixture hardens relatively quickly!

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Let cool for at least 30 minutes before removing from the molds.

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After removing the lollipops from the molds, you may begin turning the lollipops into your favorite emojis with royal icing!

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Allow the icing to set and harden before handing out and embracing your inner-emoji!

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Enjoy!

– Michelle

Homemade Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

pie (13 of 17)There is nothing quite like pie for the 4th of July! When thinking about what dessert I wanted to make for this year’s celebration, I quickly settled on a summer staple in the Feagan household: strawberry rhubarb pie. It is the perfect balance of sweet and tart, and when homemade, it is so comforting and delicious. Served warm with vanilla ice cream and it is pure perfection. While apple pie is the typical American staple, I thought this recipe would fly for the holiday as long as I dressed it up a little for the festivities.

I hope everyone’s holiday is filled with friends and family, BBQs, parades, fireworks and sunshine. And for our non-American followers, this pie tastes good on any continent! 😉

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Ingredients & Materials:

  • Two pie crusts (I like this recipe)
  • 4 cups chopped rhubarb
  • 3 cups chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 9-inch pie pan
  • vanilla ice cream (optional)

Dice your rhubarb and strawberries into approximately 1/4 inch pieces.

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Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated into the fruit juices, then set aside.

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Roll out your first pie crust on a floured surface and gently place in a greased pie pan.

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Trim the edges so that they just slightly extend past the pan edge.

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Pour your filling into the pie. Don’t worry if you don’t use all of the filling, you don’t want the pie to overflow. I always use all of the fruit but then pour in part of the liquid until the pie is full.

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Place the pie in the refrigerator to chill while you roll out the second pie crust. Use a sharp knife to cut your crust into inch-wide strips (you can use a ruler if you want to be more precise).

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Cut your butter into small chunks and evenly disperse them across the surface of your pie filling. Then use the strips to make your lattice. I like to lay half of the strips one way first.

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Then weave the remaining strips going the other direction. Trim the edges and press them down once the lattice is in place. Finish the crust by brushing whisked egg yolk over the surface and sprinkling with sugar. That will give it a nice shiny golden brown color and a sweet sugary crunch.

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Preheat the oven to 375º F and place the uncooked pie back in the fridge until your oven is fully heated. Once the oven is hot, bake your pie for approximately an hour and a half. Once the top and the edges begin to brown, cover the pie with foil so that it doesn’t burn as it continues to bake.

 

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Allow the pie to cool slightly before serving, and don’t forget the ice cream!

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Happy 4th of July!

-Kirby

Graduation Cake Pops

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Well, we did it! We finally graduated from UCLA this past weekend. Somehow it was four years ago that we met as timid young freshmen, new to the city of Los Angeles. Looking back on all the friends and memories we’ve each made during our time here, graduation feels almost surreal. It’s the end of an era!! Despite the sadness that comes with leaving behind our friends, our apartments, and our beautiful campus, we are beyond excited to begin the newest chapter in our lives.

Starting this week, we will be working on this blog together from different cities (Michelle is headed to San Francisco and Kirby will be staying in Los Angeles), but we look forward to collaborating on ideas from afar and co-writing our content. To celebrate the end of the best four years of our lives, and the last craft we’ll be making together for a while, we made these graduation cake pops. Of course we made ours blue and gold for UCLA, but they are easily customizable to any school colors. They were (almost) too cute to eat!


Materials & Ingredients:

  • Cake (no shame in a box mix!)
  • Frosting
  • Cake pop sticks
  • White candy melts
  • Chocolate fondant
  • Yellow and black/brown royal icing (you can find our recipe here)
  • Ziplock bag or piping bag
  • Sprinkles
  • Baking sheet
  • Styrofoam or cardboard box for holding the finished cake pops
  • A knife
  • Scissors

Bake your cake and allow to cool completely.

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Mix the icing in little by little until the mixture is moist enough to form a ball, but not too sticky that it will fall off of the stick — we used about 1/4 of a container. Form as many golf ball-sized cake balls and place them on the baking sheet.

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Insert your sticks into the balls. Our secret is to melt a little bit of the candy melts and dip the sticks into the melted chocolate before inserting them into the cake balls. This insures that they won’t fall off the sticks when decorating. Then place the tray in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.

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While the cake pops chill, you can make the fondant graduation caps. They aren’t hard to make but take a few steps so following these pictures might help! On a powdered sugar surface, roll out your fondant to about an 8th of an inch. Cut half of the fondant into little squares and cut the other half into thin strips. Cut your strips into 1.5 inch segments. Make your royal icing. You can get away with just half or even a quarter of the recipe. Dye half of it yellow and the other half black or brown, and place each color in a piping bag or ziplock. Cut a tiny hole in the edge. Use the black/brown icing to pipe on the end of your 1.5 inch long fondant segment. Then roll it into a circle, and repeat for each segment. Then pipe the black icing onto the top of the circle and place the square fondant piece on top. Finish them up with a little yellow icing tassel on top!

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Once you have finished the grad caps, set up your decorating station. Lay out your sprinkles, set aside your grad caps, and prepare your cardboard box or styrofoam to hold the finished cake pops. If you use a cardboard box, poke holes in the bottom and flip it upside down to hold the individual sticks. Melt your candy melts in a deep, narrow bowl or cup.

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Dip the chilled cake pop into the melted chocolate in one fluid motion. Avoid twisting or bending the cake pop, just pull it out.

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Immediately dust the cake pop with sprinkles.

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And finally, finish it off with a graduation cap. Place the finished cake pop in the styrofoam block or cardboard box to cool and harden, and repeat the process until you have finished all of the pops.

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Go Bruins and Happy Graduation!

-Michelle and Kirby

 

Father’s Day Beer “Can”dles

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For every Father’s Day since I was a little girl, I have hand crafted gifts for my dad. I’ve made cards, pop-up books, picture frames, paintings, placemats – you name it. In fact the other day when he and I were cleaning out the storage closet, I found a leaf family I once made him. There were dried leaves with cut out lips and eyes and paper hair that matched our family’s. It was pretty funny and also really sweet to see that he still had it. I never really believed him when he said he preferred handmade gifts and always vowed to buy him nice things once I had my own money, but now that I’m older I understand where he’s coming from.

These candles incorporate a classic dad favorite: beer. You can transform your dad’s favorite beer into decorative “can”dles (ha, get it?) that will always remind him of you.

I hope all the hardworking and loving fathers out there enjoy the holiday, as well as those who have selflessly stepped up and taken on that important role for children who aren’t as lucky as I’ve been to have an awesome dad. A special thanks to my dad, who loves and supports me endlessly, always pushing me to be courageous,  adventurous, curious, passionate, and kind. I’m very fortunate to have such an incredible role model.


Materials:

  • Wax
  • Empty beer cans
  • Candle wicks
  • Scissors
  • A funnel
  • Glass bowl
  • Can opener

First determine how many candles you plan to make and remove as much wax as you will need for them from the packaging. Cut the wax into smaller pieces so that it will melt easier. Place the pieces into a glass bowl and microwave on medium power for 30 second intervals until completely melted.

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While the wax melts, use a can opener to remove the top of the can. Be careful not to cut your fingers!

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The remaining lip of the can should be nice and smooth.

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Use oven mits to remove the hot wax. If you want to add a scent to your candle, go ahead and add that now. My dad isn’t a big fan of scented candles so I left mine unscented. Then dip the base of the wick into the wax and carefully position it in the bottom of the can. Allow the wax to harden for a few seconds so that the wick is secure.

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Insert the funnel so that the wick is in the middle.

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Pour the remaining hot wax into the funnel until the can is almost filled to the top.

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Leave the candle to completely cool and harden.

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Use scissors to trim the wick, and just like that, you have beer candles!

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Happy Father’s Day!

-Kirby

Lemon Flower Arrangement

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When life gives you lemons, make lemon filled vases for your flowers! The saying goes something like that… right? A flower arrangement is the easiest and most elegant way to elevate your home, but most people (like us) can’t afford fresh flower bouquets every week. So when we do buy them for celebratory occasions or when we need a little cheerer-upper, they make our homes feel extra special.

The addition of sliced lemons takes an already beautiful arrangement to the next level, just in time for the warm June weather. It’s more time consuming for sure, but the result is worth it. Our lemon flower arrangement is the perfect addition to the patio table, just in time for this week’s early summer BBQs and rosé nights with the girls.


Materials:

  • Flowers
  • Lemons (each lemon makes about 5-6 slices, so the number depends on your vase size)
  • Toothpicks
  • A vase that stands straight up (the angular ones don’t work with the lemons)
  • Scissors
  • A knife and chopping board

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Slice your lemons into even circles about 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick. If they are too thin, you will see the toothpicks so best to stay on the thick side just in case.

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Use toothpicks to connect strands of lemons. Each strand should be the height of your vase.

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Our vase was quite tall so we made alternating strands of 3 and 4 lemons.

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Trim your flowers and arrange them inside the vase with water. Carefully insert the strands of lemons along the circumference of the vase. We used alternating lengths of strands so that the lemons filled all of the gaps.

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After about fifteen minutes of intense fiddling, you are done and your efforts will be well worth it.

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lemon flowers (14 of 20)Happy June!

-Kirby and Michelle