Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Simple Summer Spinach Salad & Cocktail

We had company over for dinner the other night and served spicy herb grilled salmon.  It's a favorite summer recipe of mine because the basil, mint, ginger and jalapeno add just the mix of fresh with a bit of a bite. 

I needed a quick, healthy side and came up with this easy spinach salad.  The combination of herbs in the salmon dish and citrus-y notes in the salad were perfectly matched.  The measurements on the vinaigrette are approximate.  Taste as you go and go with your gut.

1 bag of organic baby spinach
1 cup slivered almonds, toasted (don't skip this step, adds lots of flavor)
1 small log chevre (goat cheese), crumbled
1 small can mandarin oranges, drained

vinaigrette dressing:
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup champagne vinegar
2 tsp agave nectar
1 shallot, chopped
sea salt
fresh ground pepper

This salad serves four, with plenty of dressing leftover.

Our guests brought the cocktails and it was such a treat!  I had heard about Moscow Mules from the "Oprah Goes Camping" episode, but never tried one.  O's version calls for simple syrup, but my friends skip this step and I think it's all for the better!  Again, measurements are approximate so give it a whirl and see what you think.  Not sweet and sticky like alot of mixed drinks and so refreshing for summer!!

one cocktail:
1-2oz good vodka (we used Prairie Organic)
4-5 fresh limes, squeezed
1 sprig of mint, torn in pieces
splash of ginger beer (we used Reed's Premium Ginger Brew)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Petal Pusher Available at Moonbeams

If you're a mom in Scottsdale, you probably know about Moonbeams.  If not, you should! 

In 2005 three sisters opened Moonbeams in hopes of creating a warm, friendly boutique offering bedding, sleep aids and room decor for infants and children.  They have succeeded!  

Moonbeams has a huge selection of unique, high quality clothing, gifts and accessories.  They also hold wellness seminars and partner with experts in the field to support and educate parents on topics like nutrition, discipline, safety, brain development and infant massage.  It's this sense of community and caring that makes Moonbeams so special.

Now at Moonbeams you can find a fresh and funky assortment of Petal Pusher Accessories! 
Pop in soon and say hello to Karen, Debbie & Maureen at Moonbeams.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Winner of Peaches & Cream Give Away

The winner of the Peaches & Cream Give Away is...

Jennifer Havens

Thank you to everyone who participated!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tiny Sparrow Foundation

As with most things, I stumbled upon Tiny Sparrow Foundation while surfing the net.  Their mission moved me beyond words and I felt compelled to contribute and support them in some way.

Tiny Sparrow Foundation is a non-profit organization that partners photographers with families of children who are facing life-threatening illnesses.  Through gorgeous photographs, the families are able to cherish lasting memories of joy and love.

Petal Pusher will be shipping off an assortment of Funky Blooms to be used at their very special photo shoots this summer.

Wondering how you can help?

$1 off every item ordered in the month of June will go directly to the Tiny Sparrow Foundation.  Pick a summer bloom for yourself and know that you are brightening someone else's day as well. 


Monday, May 23, 2011

Peaches & Cream Give Away

Headed out to Schnepf Farms for a little peach picking this weekend.  We got an early start and hopped on the tractor for a ride out to the orchards.  It's hot, it's dirty, it's good family fun - topped off with some peach pancakes!

So here's the give away...In going with the peaches and cream theme...

A jar of the famous Schnepf Farms Peach Preserve and a lovely Cream Petal by Petal Pusher.  Two ingredients perfect for any brunch.

To Enter:
Become a Subscriber - 1 entry
Become a Follower - 2 entries
Become a Friend of Petal Pusher Accessories on Facebook - 2 entries

Random winner will be announced Thursday morning!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Petal Pusher Available at Maui Playcare

I'm happy to announce that Petal Pusher Accessories can now be found at Maui Playcare at DC Ranch Crossing in Scottsdale, Arizona!

Stop in and take a peek at the assortment of brightly colored Itty Bitty Petals, Clippy Sets, Funky Blooms and Headbands on display.

Maui Playcare is a safe and fun drop-off babysitting and childcare center.  Bouncies, educational toys, climbers, slides, snacks, storytimes...My kids did not want to leave! 

They don't require reservations either, so it's helpful with last minute doctor appointments.  Come to think of it...I may drop the kids off and pop next door for a mani/pedi sometime soon...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ch Ch Ch Ch Changes

The Etsy shop features current offerings including Petals, Funky Blooms, Vintage Petals and Headbands in a variety of solids, as well as some limited edition patterns.

Petal Pusher will continue to offer free custom orders. 
Just send me an email and we can work to make your dream accessory come to life!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Magnolia Market Kicks Off

Our first Magnolia Market was this weekend - a coming together of local mompreneurs.  Lots of gorgeous hand-crafted goods and a fun time just chatting, drinking, eating and shopping!
Petal Pusher Accessories:




Blush Soy Candles:

Happy shoppers...

Thank you to all our lovely patrons! 

Magnolia Market will return in late summer/early fall.  "Like" Petal Pusher Accessories on Facebook or Follow this blog by email (box on upper right) and you'll be the first to know!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Making Lunch Fun

My friend was watching her son's little boy for the afternoon and snapped this photo of him eating his lunch.  They had hammered a small board into the tree to make the perfect perch for a picnic.  It got me thinking...How can I make lunch more fun?

It can be a challenge to come up with new and creative meals that are acceptable to toddler/preschooler palettes.  Here are a few things we do at home to make lunch (and meals in general) more fun.

(I should warn you that most of these photos show us eating sweet treats, which are actually not an every day thing in our house.  I guess these snacks were special enough to be camera-worthy.)

Get 'em in the kitchen with you.  My son, and now my daughter, love to help me measure, pour, scoop, stir and whisk.  You've probably heard this before, but getting them involved and proud of the meals that go on the table really does help peak their interest in food.  Yes, it is going to be messy.  Yes, things may not look or turn out perfect.  This will be a learning experience for both of you.  Working in the kitchen together provides opportunities to work with numbers, letters and sequencing.   

Use cool instruments...We cut sandwiches in to fun shapes with cookie or sandwich cutters and make pancakes into Star Wars, Mickey Mouse and dinosaur shapes (find a good selection of pancake molds at Williams-Sonoma).  This ice cream maker from REI is super fun - toss in rock salt, real vanilla bean extract, sugar, cream and ice into the chambers and shake, shake, shake.  Even the littlest ones can roll the ball around.  Toss in some jam or preserves to make natural flavored and colored ice cream.

These kids' chopsticks are a huge hit at our house - more fun than a fork and helps with fine motor skills.

This set of construction truck utensils is also a fan favorite around here.  Bulldozer some black beans and use your fork lift to deliver the goods.

Take it outside...Throw down a blanket, find spot in a tree or just sit at the picnic table.  Eating outside always spices things up.

Allow for silliness.  A bacon mustache?  Raspberries on your fingertips?  Sure!  I have no problem with kids playing with their food - as long as it ends up in their mouth.

See food preparation and assembly in action.  Find a factory or restaurant in your town that provides tours (Chick-Fil-A offers them).  Watching the food being made can be very exciting to a little person - all the machines, noises and plastic gloves.  Last summer we toured a local candy factory and then got to make candy ourselves to take home.

Bento lunches are a big trend and The Lemonista has some cute ideas.  Here are a few other neat Bento sites including one with steps on how to get started:

I hope this inspires you to get cooking with your kiddos! 

Side note:  This book was recently given to me for my birthday and it really has me jazzed.  The snacks and lunches (especially the spiced roasted garbanzo beans and egg salad sandwich) are inspiring me to make delicious simple lunches for myself too (not just gobbling down whatever the kids are having or going with the usual turkey, mixed greens and hummus wrap).  The photos are stunning and the writing and language is engaging.  It really has me re-energized in regards to cooking and getting my tail to San Fran as soon as possible.  Check out her blog here.