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Jennifer Lee Quattrucci

Making everyday life more stylish, colorful, and delightful!
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Inspiring creativity and originality

jenquattrucci@gmail.com

Valentine's Day Inspiration: Sequins and Sweets 

Valentine's Day Inspiration: Sequins and Sweets 

Many call it another Hallmark holiday, but there is no denying that Valentine's Day is the perfect excuse to put on a gorgeous ensemble and hit the town. Whether you are going out on a romantic date or drinking one too many whiskeys with close friends, you can sparkle and shine to your heart's content and enjoy every moment of the night.This is especially true  if you happen to come across the most perfect dress in the world, like I did. I was approached by a lovely woman from the PinkBlush boutique http://like2b.uy/shoppinkblush/ to try something and give a review. When I went to the beautiful site I immediately found lots of dresses, trendy tops, skirts, and lovely accessories but my search was over when I found the most amazing burgundy sequin gown. I requested it and days later it arrived at my door looking even more incredible in person! I was telling two of my friends at work about the gown and showed them the online picture and also had to also send them photos when it arrived. Jen and Lacreasha both agreed it looked even better in person. 

I was excited to put it on and share the photos because the PinkBlush boutique is going to give a $75.00 gift certificate to one person that comments on this post. So, don't be shy. Say something! 

The next day I my dad, aka my photographer, took me to a local hotel http://curiocollection3.hilton.com/en/hotels/rhode-island/providence-biltmore-curio-collection-by-hilton-PVDCUQQ/index.html?wt.srch=1 for pictures. It was actually his idea because after taking wedding pictures for 40 years he kind of knows the best spots in town. 

The Providence Biltmore is an iconic, landmark hotel with an illustrious past. It really such a magnificent place to stay, hold an event or just have a really nice dinner or drink. It would be perfect for Valentine's Day, of course. 

You can provide dessert. Here are two of my favorite recipes, which are actually both from my mom. I grew up with Red Velvet Cake as a traditional Valentine's Day, Christmas and Birthday favorite. 

Red Velvet Cake

You will need:

1/2 cup shortening

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs 

2 ounces red food coloring 

2 tablespoons cocoa

1 cup buttermilk 

2 1/4 cups cake flour 

1 teaspoon salt 

1 teaspoon vanilla 

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vinegar

Frosting

3 tablespoons flour 

1 cup milk 

1 cup sugar 

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup butter

1. Cream shortening, sugar and eggs.

2. Make a paste of food coloring and cocoa 

3. Add to creamed mixture.

4. Add buttermilk alternating with flour and salt.

5. Add vanilla.

6. Add soda to vinegar, and blend into the batter.

7. Pour into 3 or 4 floured cake pans.

8. Bake at 350 degrees for 24-30 minutes.

9. Split layers and fill and frost with the following frosting. 

10. Prepare frosting by adding milk to flour slowly, avoiding lumps. 

11. Cook the flour and milk until very thick, stirring constantly.

12. Cool completely.

13. Cream sugar, butter and vanilla until fluffy.

14. Add to cooked mixture.

15. Beat, high speed, until very fluffy.

Chocolate Sweetheart Cakes for Two 

You will need:

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar 

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar 

3 tablespoons Hershey's Cocoa 

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/8 teaspoon salt 

1/2 cup water 

3 tablespoons vegetable oil 

1/2 teaspoon white vinegar 

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Chocolate Frosting ( recipe follows)

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 8 inch square baking pan.

2. Stir together flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Add water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla; beat with whisk or spoon until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan.

3. Bake 18-20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely. 

4. Transfer to cutting board. Using 3 1/4 inch heart shaped cutter, cut cake into 4 hearts. Prepare chocolate frosting; spread over tops of two hearts. Piece remaining two hearts on top. Garnish as desired. 

Chocolate Frosting 

You will need:

1 tablespoon butter

2/3 cup powdered sugar 

1 tablespoon Hershey's Cocoa 

2 or 3 teaspoons milk 

1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Place butter in microwave safe bowl. Microwave at medium power ( 50%) 20 seconds or until butter is melted. Stir together powdered sugar and cocoa; add to butter mixture alternately with milk, beating with spoon or whisk until smooth. Stir in vanilla. 

This is a really easy and delicious recipe that's perfect for sharing with those special people in your life.

Double Decker Chocolate Hearts 

http://www.acmoore.com/make-n-mold-174-double-decker-chocolate-hearts.html

Here are some more really great ideas inspired by classic conversation candy hearts. They are perfect for a party or sending in to school with your child for all their friends and teachers to enjoy.

Rice Krispie Treat Heart Pops

http://www.celebrations.com/c/read/conversation-heart-treats-valentines-day

Conversation Heart Ice Cream

http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/holidays/valentines-day-ideas/g3180/valentines-desserts/?

Conversation Heart Sugar Cookies

http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/mini-conversation-heart-cookies/c3360460-849d-4d3d-8c5f-8ca7d767a6fc

Dipped Oreo Cookies 

http://www.celebrations.com/c/read/conversation-heart-treats-valentines-day

Hope you found this post entertaining and useful. I truly appreciate your time and attention.

Thank you so much for visiting the blog today and Happy Valentine's Day! 

Yours truly,

Jennifer 

Ps. I recently had the pleasure of sampling the Bootay Bag subscription service and love it. The best part is that proceeds from each payment goes to a great cause. This month a dollar will be given to melanoma research and treatment. 

http://bootaybag.com/ for more info and to subscribe 

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