This little pig went to market…

Pigs are one of man’s most useful and intelligent domesticated animals, but they never seem to get their due. Today is their day!

It’s National Pig Day! A time to celebrate the little oinkers. They may appear dirty but are really clean creatures. To most people they are just smelly farm animals that make great meals. But Pigs are actually really cute. Just think Charlotte’s Web!

I’ve found some images and decor that show just how adorable they can be.

Greeting card by Patience Brewster

A line of cards and prints from an illustrator/artist who is inspired by all god’s creatures that she grew up loving.

 

Product Image Circo® Hearts Piggy Bank 

Perfectly Patterned Piggy Banks by Circo, available at Target

 

Pigs and Hearts Bib

xoxo for hog lovers

Pigs and Hearts design available on all kinds of apparel and accessories like this baby bib.

Fun pig art from designer Lil’ Pig Shop listing on cafepress.

“Show off your pig loving self with this whimsical pig original by JGoode. Pig t-shirts, hoodies, stickers, novelty gifts and more. Pigs and Hearts, hog fun for every pig lovers.”

 

Whimsical Pig Weathervane

Domesticated decor for your home or barn from Good Directions 

 

Whimsical Pig Blank Art Card 

ThinkLocal esty dealer designs blank cards that are simple and sweet.

“This adorable little piggy is the perfect card for a child’s birthday card, invitations, or just a card to brighten their day. He is a pretty turquoise blue on a purple background.”

 

“Snout for a Spout”

Babe Yi Xing Clay Teapot 

 

Ben's Birthday Bash

Party Piggy perfect for any Birthday Bash

This 2-piece set from Lenox will make anyone smile. It makes the happy birthday tune pop right into my head…

 

 

All these images really make we want to own a little piglet — but I don’t think Jim would like that… and I’m sure Inky the cat wouldn’t either. Guess I’ll have to pet some pigs my text trip to the petting zoo.

And I hate to say it but National Pig Day also makes me want to pig out on some BBQ. Being from the South, pork barbeque and all the fixings is like the Cheesesteak is to Philly.

Pigs really are perfect little creatures and it’s a shame more people don’t celebrate their cuteness.

Advertisements

There’s still time Valentine!

Did you forget the holiday? Did you have to work yesterday? Or is one day not enough time to celebrate your love?

Don’t worry, you can spread the love days later!!

If you are in the dog house, here’s your chance to get out. Take advantage of the sales on candy and flowers. Cook a special dinner or go out to your favorite restaurant (no lines or crowds the day after).

Valentine’s Day is February 14th, however love should and can be celebrated any day of the year.

I’ll be eating my candy and sweets all week and enjoying some extra special time with my husband. I’ll keep the decorations up for a while longer. I’ll light the candles and have the house smell fragrant. Maybe a glass of wine to relax. This time of year I get inspired for how we can keep the love alive all year-long. Valentine’s is special but I think the best romantic times are the surprises and unexpected moments we share.

Sweet Inspiration for Gift Giving

“Giving chocolate to others is an intimate form of communication, a sharing of deep, dark secrets.” Milton Zelman, publisher of Chocolate News

  


Give the ones you love the gift of joy, richness, melt in your mouth goodness.  And make sure it’s stylish and wrapped in a gorgeous package. No plain box or red heart will do– special chocolates must be presented in the best manner.

Here are some chocolatiers that have great packaging to go with their splendid little treats:

Valerie Confections

Grand Elle Assortment (even the name sounds luscious); $46.00 for 19 piece gift box; sweetly packaged in an ivory box and tied with a pink ribbon.

 

Zoë’s Chocolate Co.

Love in a Box; $23.75 for 16 piece gift box; this is the dark side of the chocolate world; passionately wrapped up and sealed with a kiss.

Love in a Box

 

Moonstruck Chocolatier (such an amazing selection I have to highlight two)

 Valentine Wrapped Truffle Collection; $24.95 for 9 piece gift box; festively wrapped in elegant paper and topped with a big red bow.

Love Bug Truffle Collection; $25.95 for 6 piece gift box; cute-as-a-button circular box sealed with affection.
 
See’s Candies
Tuxedo Heart; $26.00 for a 1 lb. gift box; wrapped up tight for the man in your life to rip open.
 
 
Elaine Hsieh Chocolatier
Red Collection; $20.95 for 9 piece gift box; exotic and sexy; their signature black box expertly wrapped in red Japanese paper and sealed with wax.
Red Collection 9 Piece Box
 
Sharis Berries
Fancy Chocolate Dipped Strawberries; $27.99 holiday special for 9 piece gift box; sleek and sophisticated in a keepsake crocodile box.
9 Fancy Berries and FREE Brown Keepsake Box
 
Max Brenner (chocolate by the bald man; highlighted because there is a local cafe in center city Philly)
White Chocolate Luxury Truffles Gift Set; $19.90 for a valentine’s variety gift set including: Whipped white chocolate cream truffles with island coconut liqueur rolled in powdered sugar) & Massage Oil; funky and flirty packaging.
Valentine's Day Gift Set - White Chocolate
 
 
And for those people who don’t feel like shopping online- try a local cafe, bakery or chocolate house.
Here in Philadelphia I would recommend the Naked Chocolate Cafe.
Chocolate Butterfly
It’s the ultimate chocolate experience, offering a wide variety of artisanal chocolates and desserts made on site. They also offer warm beverages and brunch. This would be the perfect spot for your Valentine’s date or a cozy place to chat with that special someone. I love this place and have a fond memory of  it since their 18th street location was the site for my surprise bridal shower from my co-workers.
 
 
But no matter where you celebrate this romantic holiday and no matter what gifts you give, tell the special people in your life that you love them and make each moment count.
 
 

Chocolate– truly the language of love; the sweetest gift you can give; the drug that’s legal; a little piece of heaven in every bite!

GIVE = SAVE = LOVE

With Valentine’s Day approaching I’ve been thinking of possible gifts for Jim. And now with our changed income, I’m all about saving money. I’m looking for the perfect gift on a budget. Design diva turned frugalista!

Here’s some of my ideas and online findings; something for every budget (low to high):

  • Jim loves pretzel M&M’s, so I could buy a big bag and put them in a cute box with a ribbon = estimated cost $8.00 including the gift wrap.

 

  • Jim got the kit for Christmas to make his own beer. I’m thinking about getting label paper and designing custom labels for the beer he is brewing.  The Home Brewery offers a wide selection of print ready self-adhesive labels, perfect designed for beer bottles. 32 matte finish, simple shape labels = $8.50 plus the time and design.

 

  • Guys can’t have enough t-shirts, so the create a custom t-shirt function/product on Zazzle is perfect. It allows you to add photos, text, and/or logos. There is no minimum and you can order at little as one shirt for $12.95. Plus there are 400+ styles and colors to choose from.

  • Photo-Opoly Board Game, includes instructions and materials to include up to 22 of your favorite photos. It’s available at Toys-R-Us and Amazon for $26.00. You can even customize the titles for properties… which is something I know my man would enjoy. He would like coming up with funny names.

  • We recently received an Ice Cream Maker as a gift. I’ve been thinking about learning how to operate it and then making a special ice cream social/50’s style Valentine’s night. Then I could have banana splits or a sundae for 2 and then other fun foods. Cost = ingredients for flavored ice cream since we already have the mix, and any cost for food and drinks for that meal. Budget = $35-$45

  YUMMO!

  • I’ve been saying that Jim could really use a nice comfy set of pajamas and/or a comfy robe to lounge around in. In searching for a store that carries robes, it was hard to find one with product in an actual location. Many carried them online only or online boutiques. Macy’s and Kohl’s seem to be the department stores closest to where we live that carry nice ones. Priced around $20 – $50.  And all the pajama sets are really corny looking or flannel so maybe I’ll just stick with the robe.

Croft and Barrow Solid Long Plush Wrap Robe

  • In our new home, Jim could use a guys night. Plus my gift could be stocking the bar. The guys could enjoy drinks and play video games or watch sports (and I could enjoy time with the girls). PRICELESS guy time plus cost of food and drinks = $60-$80. This could even be used for the super-bowl or a birthday gift.

(based on my husband Jim, but could work for the special man in your life/also feel free to combine ideas)

And although Jim might read this, I’m not worried about spoiling any surprise. Men are great like that. You can tell them something and they will most likely not hear you or listen but forget about it all together.

And you can never go wrong with gifts of food and beer. It’s true what they say– the best/quickest way to a man’s heart is thru his stomach!

Happy V-Day Shopping!