Monday, December 19, 2011

DIY Photobooth

Meg and I hosted a Christmas party last Friday at her house. We've been itching to have a fun party and really wanted to have the party while our good friend (and former college roomie!) Jess was in town. We made fun cocktails, had a white elephant gift exchange, and made a photobooth. A dance party even broke out around midnight (YES!). I was so shocked that almost everyone who came brought a gift for the game.

My gift for the gift exchange was a Four Loco shirt and a can of Four Loko. So bummer that you can't find the kind with caffeine anymore. Jess and I were running around in the morning one day to find a can for me, and it was pretty hilarious to check out with nothing else but a can of Four Loko at 9am.

I am SO HAPPY about the photobooth we had set up for the party!

(notice Kara in the last photo got my white elephant gift!)

The photobooth was pretty easy to set up. Meg and I found cheap props from Family Dollar and Walgreens. I was dying to find a big plastic reindeer or a flamingo at a thrift store, but I never did.

Camera: I used my Nikon D50 with the 55-200mm lens. Due to space (I couldn't back the tripod any more), I had the camera set to 55mm. You should set the focus to auto.

Lighting: I bought two of those cheap metal clamp lights. I used two 100 watt light bulbs. The rest of the room was pretty dim and this was enough light. Don't use your camera flash; you'll get shadows in the pics.

Our backgroud: $3 wrapping paper.

Setup: I left the camera on for three or four hour window during the party with the remote and timer on. A sign directed guests to pick the remote to take their pictures. I determined the max area someone could be in and still be in a picture and taped that box on the ground using masking tape.

The only tricky part was the lighting. The night before the party we spent a while moving the lamps around to find the perfect spots. We had one lamp on each side and ended up pointing them up towards the ceiling.

The photobooth was so much fun; we might have one again if we have a new year's party!

Oh, and the invite I made is worth sharing too:

(don't worry, that's not her real address)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Ultimate Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

Tiff's Treats here in Austin make a ridiculous chocolate chip cookie. There's a hint of coconut flavor to them, so I was suspecting that they may use coconut oil. I found a recipe online that uses coconut oil and OMG they are the best and richest chocolate chip cookies (and SO chewy!).

Recipe adapted from cheekykitchen.com


1/2 cup coconut oil
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbs vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
8 oz dark chocolate chips

In a large bowl,beat together coconut oil, eggs, and brown sugar. Add remaining ingredients, mixing together until just incorporated. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet in the oven at 400 degrees for 9-11 minutes, or just until the outside of the cookies have browned ever so slightly around the edges. I made mine large and took them out right at 10 minutes (a little spot or two on the cookies still looked goo-ey.)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Happy Friday

yay, Friday!

John Waters tonight!