chocolate hazelnut caramel ganache

I’m a big believer that amazing things come in little packages.
And when things are little, I can eat more of them.  Right?

If you knew me in college, or in LA, or if you know me now!…you know that I always have a bag of little chocolates stashed somewhere in the kitchen, for those times when I just need a little treat.  Sometimes there’s a bag in the fridge (cause some chocolate is better cold). And sometimes there’s a bag of chocolate chips half-opened and half-eaten (cause they’re great on crackers with peanut butter).

But in general–Life is like a box of chocolates.  And every day should include a small bit of it….with all the caramel strings attached.

Seriously.  I may or may not be eating chocolate AS I’m writing this post.  But what is one to do, when this is their job for the day??? My kids watched me editing these photos and said, Mom, your job is to talk about chocolate?? (this is going to take career day to a whole new level)

But yesss.  I was contacted by Godiva Masterpieces to share a little story.  And to share their cute indulgent chocolates, which you can now buy in a bag at the grocery store! Woohoo! They’re individually wrapped (perfect)
((and easy to give away in goodie bags or gifts))
(((and would be so fun in a guest room)))

But I’m getting ahead of myself here.  Let’s jump back to 1992.
Yep. That’s me with those awesome eyebrows.

And when Godiva asked me to share their new Godiva Masterpieces I was like….ummm. Yes! I worked at a Godiva shop in high school!  It was blogging destiny.

I don’t know why I have a photo of me in my Godiva apron, working at the store, when I was 16?  My mom must have stopped by the mall that day. But I’m glad I do. It’s fun to see these pics side-by-side, 20 (+) years apart.
I can still remember that first day on the job when we tried some of the famous Godiva flavors, which is what the Masterpieces are based on–their most decadent, legendary pieces.  Like the Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Oyster:

Guys.  Up until this point in my short life I had never tasted hazelnut before.  How is that possible?
And when I bit into that thing, it was like piece of my life had been found.  And now I think of it in two parts–life before hazelnut chocolate filling; and life after.  Mmmm.  So delicious.

Of course there’s also the famous Milk Chocolate Caramel Lion (which also comes individually wrapped in the Masterpieces bags).  And I love how easy it is to purchase high-end chocolates, right at the grocery store, and have a little treat when I need it.

They’re the perfect little size.
We “heart” dark chocolate ganache. Heh heh.

So for this post, Godiva asked me to come up with a fun way to use their new Masterpieces for the holidays, and every day.

And since my family loves to sit around the table and chat and share stories and laugh (that’s my brother and his wife in the photos above), I immediately thought of a dinner party.

I grabbed a bag of Godiva Masterpieces, wrote some mixer-game questions on pieces of paper, and taped them to the back of each individually-wrapped chocolate.

You could do this so many different ways…as an appetizer or as a post-dinner sweet treat.  But the idea is to pass the basket around, each person picks a chocolate and has to answer the question on the back before they can eat the chocolate.

Share two truths and one lie.
Where would you like to travel to most?
What was your best grade in school? Your worst grade?
Three things you’re thankful for?
The craziest thing you did as a teenager?
Share something you love about the person on your left?

Obviously the questions can be modified to include children in the game too. And you can mix it up with “questions” like, steal the candy of the person on your right and answer their question.  And then that person gets another piece of chocolate.  I really love this kind of conversation, even with family that I’ve known for years.  You always find out things you still don’t know about a person–even your spouse.

And, You get to eat chocolate.

Want to try out some Godiva Masterpieces for your own holiday party?
Today we’re giving away a $100 Visa gift card so you can purchase your own Godiva Masterpieces at your local grocery store! (and p.s. they sell Godiva chocolate bars too. Mmmm)

To enter, leave a comment and share your favorite mixer game question!  One lucky entry will be chosen to win.

Entry Instructions:

No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from SheKnows via email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected. The Official Rules are available here. This sweepstakes runs from 11/21/17-12/31/17.

Sewing a Beach Coverup, for ME!

Texas is doing that weird thing again, where it’s hot, and then it’s 30, and then it’s back up to 90.  Maybe I should accept that it’s not “weird.” It’s just Texas.

So before it gets back into the 30s, let me share this fun Beach Coverup that I made for myself.  I’m really digging this selfish sewing.  And especially with easy summer items like tanks and tees.  It’s so fast to sew one of those.

This coverup was something I based on a dress I already have.  And I know I called this a “retro” coverup.  The style is not particularly retro….in fact it’s more modern with the racerback. But the fabric is from my BLUSH fabric collection and it’s called Retro Petals!  So there you go.

I’ve mentioned this before, but Art Gallery knits are really some of the softest that I’ve ever felt.  They are buttery. And so stretchy—with a bit of spandex in there.  If you’re new to sewing with knits, I have tons of helpful tips to get you started!

And if wovens are your thing, this print also comes in quilting cotton in two color ways (which feels amazing as well).  In fact that’s the AGF motto—Feel the difference.

So, for this project I traced an old coverup for my pattern and used an old t-shirt for the binding.  Love projects like that! And love a pop of yellow of course.  I gathered the “skirt” by sewing 1/4 inch elastic around the edge, with a zigzag stitch, and then I attached it to the bodice.  That’s totally my go-to method these days—like the Scooter dress here.

And there you go! Perfect simple coverup for our annual Palm Springs trip that happened this summer.

Of course my favorite part is the back—which is far from perfect, and I’m so fine with that.

I just think it’s really fun to see a peek of swimsuit straps next to the dress.
And “Vikings” braids gives an added touch.

This Retro Petals print is one of the smaller-scale prints in the BLUSH collection, and there are so many fun things to do with it.

This jewelry case sewn by my friend Susan for the lookbook is too cute.  And how purrrrfect do the petals look cut on the bias like that?? (tutorial here)

Make a quilt, make a bag.
Make it all.
(photos via AGF)

These two quilting blocks are SO cool.
I mean, the one on the left by Kate Basti is blowing my mind!  It’s like the fabric was made for those shapes.
The block on the right is from the BLUSH lookbook and you can find the pattern here.

And for even MORE sewing fun, AGF has a pattern PLUS video for another block!
Time to get quilty.

So are you ready to sew with some BLUSH?? Whether your choice is quilts, apparel, crafts, or anything else, I hope you find something inspiring! Check out more projects and where to find the fabrics here.

Annnd look at that, during the time it took me to write this post, it’s cold here again. Haah! Well, I’m sure I’ll be able to bust out this coverup again in no time.













New Video: How to Make a Baby Hat

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana

Why are tiny things so stinkin’ cute??
I mean, really. Don’t you just want to eat these up? And the tiny baby cheeks that go inside them?  I guess the fabric says it all.

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana

Ahhh! It’s too much cute!

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana

But unlike the babies that will wear them, these hats are SUPER quick and easy. Haha.
You can whip one up for every day of the week. Then make hats for your family’s and friends’ babies.

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana

They only take a little bit of fabric—perfect for those knit scraps.
You can get as creative as you like with a little pompom or other ball/trim on top, or leave it off entirely. And I have a free pattern for you here!

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana

Let’s make hats. Be careful, they’re addictive… Just click the play button below and enjoy!

If you’re new around here, MADE EVERYDAY with Dana is a fresh and fun sewing show, where we create everyday items you will love and use.

To watch other episodes–Subscribe to my YouTube channel so you’re updated as soon as the episode goes live.

How to Make a Baby Hat | beanie sewing video tutorial with FREE PATTERN from MADE Everyday with Dana