Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Mr Independent's 3rd birthday

Chocolate cupcakes were requested.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

USMC Birthday Ball Dessert

Along with the traditional birthday cake this nice looking (& tasty!!) dessert was served. It had a cake layer with pudding, then topped with whip cream & a raspberry. Garnished with blueberries & white chocolate stars. Served in a chocolate cup.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Tutu dress

I made this dress for Princess to wear at as the flower girl for my brother's wedding.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Cupcake fairy

Princess is a cupcake fairy for Halloween. Just re-using her birthday outfit & added some wings. The kids had a Halloween party to go to yesterday for our MOMS group.

1 Unfinished project marked off the list!

My brother is getting married in a couple of weeks. Princess is the flower girl. She will be wearing a sage & rust tutu dress with a rust colored flower & brown ribbon. This project cost under $20. It's late so I have not had the chance to put the (hopefully) finished product on her. Tomorrow I will get pictures of her in it. But for now...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Birthday cake & cupcakes

It's been a few months, I know, lol. Here is Princess' cake & cupcakes that I made for her 1st birthday.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Grilled Apple & Brie Quesadilla with Strawberry Apple Dipping Sauce

I made this for a snack this afternoon. The recipe is Sandra Lee Semi Homemade. One quesadilla was plenty for the kids & I to snack on.

**What you need:
1/4 cup cream cheese
8 soft taco size flour tortillas
1/2lb brie, thinly sliced strips
1 apple thinly sliced (I used the majority of an apple for just the 1 I made)

1 (8oz) jar strawberry jam
1/4 cup apple sauce 1 pinch cinnamon

Preheat grill pan over medium heat. SPray pan with non stick spray when ready to start cooking.

Spread cream cheese evenly over 4 of the tortillas. Evenly divide brie strip on top of the cream cheese. Divide apple slices on top of brie. Top with remaining 4 tortillas.

Place each on pan & grill 3 minutes/side. Flip with a spatula. Remove from heat & cool 2 minutes before slicing.

Sauce: Combine ingredients and microwave for 1-2 minutes. (I didn't have apples sauce so I just heated some strawberry jelly for a minute - more than enough time).

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Go me!!

I complete (well almost) my 1st successful sewing machine project. My definition of successful is:
1) didn't have to rip out any stitches
2) stitches came out looking nice
3) my pattern fit after sewing it together
4) I finished it without tossing it to the side or passing it onto MIL. :) (she'll be happy to know this,lol)

MIL figured out it was a tension issue I was having. I have no clue what any of that means. I need remedial sewing 101. Anyways, I made cushion covers for the patio chairs. I, for some reason, thought there was only 4 chairs in the set. So I ordered enough fabric for the 4. I normally over buy fabric. The one time I don't, I ended up needing more! We have 5 chairs, not 4. We've always only used 4, so I guess I never noticed that 5th. That's what I meant about "almost" above. I have ordered more fabric. Oooh!! I even got all fancy & made cushion ties. Nothing fancy, but they work.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

S'mores cupcakes

I wanted to make some tonight. Found an easy recipe for the frosting. Came time to take out the ingredients & I didn't have enough eggs for the cupcakes & the frosting. :( Adding eggs to the grocery list & peanut butter brownies are in the oven. Got Mr Independent (AKA: Tootie) all excited that we were going to baking tonight. Oh, well, he had fun making the brownies & will never know the difference. When I do get around to making these cupcakes I will post the recipe.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Peanut butter frosting

This is the recipe I used for Princess' birthday cupcakes back in June. I still can't get to my pictures. Hopefully in the next couple weeks I will be able to. I'll add a picture when I can. This recipe is really good. Not too sweet or peanut-buttery & super easy.

2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 cup confectioner sugar
In a small saucepan over low hear, melt peanut butter, butter and dissolve sugar. remove from heat and whisk in milk. transfer to a medium bowl and set aside to cool. Add confectioner sugar and beat on medium/high speed until smooth and fluffy. Spread on cake.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Apple Turnovers

I made these today from the apples that MIL & Tootie picked off our tree. They are to die for! I have a couple apple pie recipes, but a friend came across one that sounded yummy. I just made a few changes to it.

What you need...
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
1 1/4 pounds tart apples, such as Empire or Granny Smith (3 apples) (we are thinking the ones in the back are Macintosh)
3 tablespoons sugar, plus extra to sprinkle on top
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pinch kosher salt
1 package (17.3 ounces, 2 sheets) frozen puff pastry, defrosted
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Put into a bowl the orange zest & juice. Peel, slice & core the apples and then cut them up into pieces. Toss the apples with the zest and juice to prevent them from turning brown. Add the sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.

Flour a board and lightly roll each sheet of puff pastry to a 12 by 12-inch square. Cut each sheet into 4 smaller squares and keep chilled until ready to use.

Brush the edges of each square with the egg wash and neatly place about 1/3 cup of the apple mixture on half of the square. Fold the pastry diagonally over the apple mixture and seal by pressing the edges with a fork. Transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush the top with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, make 2 small slits, and bake for 20 minutes, until browned and puffed. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Caprese salad

I haven't had this in ages. MIL brought over some tomatoes from their garden. I just looked up a basic recipe on Food network.

What you need:
mozzarella cheese ball
basil leaves (I didn't have any, so I used the crushed basil leaves I had on hand)
Extra virgin olive oil
salt & pepper

Slice up your tomatoes & mozzarella. Alternate them onto the plate. Add basil leaves & drizzle with the olive oil. Salt & pepper to taste.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Redneck S'mores

I so need a fire pit or dig through the garage for the camping coal grill. Tootie & I made s'mores tonight. "How" you ask? Nope, not in the microwave. We set marshmallows on fire over the stove flame (gas). Very tasty! Tootie enjoyed his first s'more very much, but like his momma, could not eat anymore after that. Here's a few pictures of the evenings event.

We like our marshmallows toasty in this house!

The final verdict!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


These came off our tree out back. MIL & Tootie climbed the tree to pick them. I have some delicious plans for them! I also still need to post The cupcakes I made for Princess' birthday & the recipe for the yummy peanut-butter icing. I was going to wait until I could access my pictures, but I might just have to post & add them later.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Strawberry-bannana muffins

Tootie & I made these this afternoon. Super yummy! Got the recipe off Bake & Destroy.


1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup mashed ripe banana
1 cup strawberries, chopped
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup granola

**What you do:
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. If you don't use tins for your muffins, then grease the pan. In one bowl mix together brown sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, & banana. Melt butter, add to bowl & combine. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, & salt. Gently stir in the strawberries. Add ingredients from the 1st bowl & mix. Fill muffin tins. Top with granola and bake 20-25 minutes. Let cool.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Princess' party

If you read my other blog I am having issues loading my800 pictures from our trip. For some reason the lap top won't read burned discs. Princess' birthday was a blast. It turned out 10 times better than I expected it to. As soon as I figure out this computer issue I will post more.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Birthday shirt

I've gone cupcake crazy!! I was browsing online for a shirt that Princess could wear with her tutu. I came across several items that I liked but no prices I was willing to pay. I'm one that if I can make it quickly & for cheaper, then I'm going to make it. This project cost me less than $1 to make. Not even sure if I bought the t-shirt or if it was a hand me down. Tootie wore it so it's at least a couple of years old. All I had to do was buy the felt. I got felt squares from Jo-Anns for 20 cents each & have plenty left over for future projects. The inspiration were the Robeez's . I used liquid stitch to hold everything down & the stitches I added are more for look.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Princess' birthday tutu

I have a few minutes to kill this morning before I have to get ready to take Tootie to his appointment. My goal for Princess' birthday is to get everything made before we travel. Once we get to our destination I doubt I'll have much time to do anything crafty. If I haven't already mentioned or if you have not noticed, Princess is having a cupcake theme. The inspiration for the tutu came from Give Peas a Chance. The colors for her tutu came from a pair of cupcake Robeez shoes that she has - brown, pink & fuschia.

All you need is elastic & tulle. I used to roll elastic & the 6" tulle that comes on a roll in the wedding section of your craft store.

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BTW, it was brought to my attention the other day that I have not mentioned the vanity. I have come to the conclusion that I have creative/craft ADD. Actually things got busy here & other things became more important, BUT I will get back to it. Actually I have come up with an alternative to finishing it which will be quicker than the route I was taking previously. Hopefully I will get it done this week if someone stays on top of me. I need to pin a sticky note to myself to get it done!! In the mean time I have been getting great use out of that vanity.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Mini cupcake crayons

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What you need...
- crayons
- cutting tool (knife or scissors or xacto knife)
- mini muffin pan
- mini cupcake cups (optional)

**Preheat oven to 265 degrees F.

Peel or slice the wrappers off the crayons. Place cupcake cups into pan. Pick 2 or 3 colors/crayons for each cupcake. Break the crayons into 1/4th & place into the cup. Place into oven & melt for 6-8 minutes. You don't want them to be too liquidity, just lose shape. Take out & set on the counter to congeal for a few minutes. Place into freezer for 30 minutes. If you do not use cupcake cups, after taking out of the freezer they will pop right now.
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I'm making these as party favors for Princess' birthday.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Cupcake cards

I'm ahead of myself, but that's a good thing right now. I'm making these for Princess' first birthday. I'm pleased with the way they are turning out. Here birthday isn't for another month & a half plus some days. I have a million other things on my plate so I need to get moving.

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- plain cards
- muslin
- fabric for cupcake tops
- fabric for cupcake cups
- thread
- puffy paint (optional)
- yarn or other material for candle
- tissue paper for flame (optional)
- 2 coordinating colors of ribbon
- Liquid stitch

Cut muslin with pinking sheers to fit the size of your card. Draw & cut a pattern for your cupcake tops & cups. Trace & cut fabrics. I wanted the pleat look on the cups so I added lines with puffy paint. With the liquid stitch glue the tops & cups to the muslin. Glue your candle & flame on. Stitch (sewing machine or by hand) muslin to card down the sides of the front & back. Sewing machine would be quicker, but I liked the look of the hand stitch. Ask me if I still like the look when I am finished with the rest of the cards. Tie ribbon around the middle of the card. Add your party information or note to someone on the inside! Super quick & addicting. Now I can go get some of that much needed sleep!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

1 cup unbleached or all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine
2 egg whites
2 tbsp 1% milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 package (6 oz) semisweet chocolate pieces or morsels (Ghirardelli dark chocolate, mmmmmmmmmmm!!)

Preheat oven to 375, coat 2 baking sheets with nonstick spray
In large bowl combine unbleached or all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour,oats, baking soda, & salt.
In another large bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar, butter or margarine, egg whites, milk & vanilla extract. Add flour mixture & stir just until moistened. Stir in chocolate pieces.
Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls, 2" apart, on the prepared baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Cool. Makes 48.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Pre-made albums

I made my first one tonight. Well it's something I have been working on here & there. I had to sit myself down tonight & finish the last 3 pages. I have pictures, but need to load & watermark them. Will post later. Pre-made albums are something I am toying with to maybe make a little change on the side. Right now I am just doing a couple as gifts to hopefully get my name out there. I have another one I need to get started on. Now that I have my craft area some what more organized I can focus in catching up on my scrap booking.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Recycled note pads

I saw this craft on an episode of Martha Stewart a few months ago. I've been wanting to make it. It's super easy & does not take that long to do.

What you need...
Paper you will use for the inside pages
card stock
scrapbooking paper outside cover
stapler or glue (depends on thickness of book & what your stapler can handle)

What you do...
Cut inside pages down to size. For this project I wanted to make a scrapbook. I used black paper for the pages. My pictures were 4x6's so I cut the paper down to 5x7. Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Cut card stock into 2 - 5x7's. My paper was thick enough that I just used that.

Staple pages & card stock together along 1 side. My book was too thick so I glued the pages 1 by 1. I clipped the book together & let it dry over night. Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Cut cover paper 1/2" longer then the book to accommodate the spine. So for a 5x7 book I cut my cover paper to 10.5x7".
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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Egg candles

Pretty easy craft to do. Along with these I was going to do chocolate eggs in real egg shells but I just couldn't bring myself to eat more eggs & everyone else I made eat eggs. Just tap the tops off of the shells. Rinse them out & then wipe down with vinegar. Dye the shells & allow to dry. Melt your choice of wax. I used microwavable soy wax. I even added a little scent to the melted wax. I placed my wicks into the shell & then poured the wax. Allow to dry. Clip wicks. I set mine up in ceramic egg cartons I found at Jo-Anns & added little candies for decoration.
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My pretty cupcakes

Made these 2 weeks ago. Normally I over pour batter & they get the muffin tops to them. Nothing special at all, just proud of myself!

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Red Velvet (again!) with a hersey kiss in the middle topped with vanilla icing. I was wanting the kiss to melt but they didn't.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Chocolate cover bananas

I prefer chocolate covered strawberries, but these weren't half bad.

Peel bananas & cut them in half. Stick them with a popsicle stick. Freeze for 1 hour.

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Heat your chocolate up. Take bananas out of freezer & dip. Wrap & freeze what you don't plan on eating right away.

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*I dug in before I could take a picture! Mmmmmmmmm :)

My latest find

Have I mentioned before how much I love browsing Home Goods Store? I found this vase (like I need another one) for $5.99!! Nothing fancy, but I like the colors.

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Feel'n a creative groove come'n on!

Been meaning to do this for a while now...

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LOVE the way it turned out. When I have my hair down you don't see a thing. When I pull it back you can see. Kinda like a magic trick. ;)

Monday, February 25, 2008

My list from earlier

2 out of 3 are marked off...

I found an apron that will work for what I need it for. I was unable to find a leprechaun gnome, but I found something even better! I'm excited!!! Can't let you in on what it is just yet. Maybe in a few weeks after I ship off Pilot's St. Patty's Day/Spring/Easter box.

Freecycle rocks!!

I remembered what it was that I wanted to tell you all about. It was so simple, too. Over this weekend I scored this awesome sign for free!! It says "No Cowboys Permitted". I got to go outside Princess' room since Tootie has the cowboy theme going on.

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Not what I was wanting to write earlier, but...

I am on the hunt for 3 items...
1) a chair for my vanity. I need to find a picture of what I am looking for. Not sure how to really
describe it. I'll insert it later when I have more time.
2) a vintage leopard print apron. Preferably a full one, not just the skirt part. I need it for
another project I am working on. I found a skirt only one, but it's going to take some thinking
on how to make it work if I can't find a full one.
3) a leprechaun garden gnome to send the Pilot.

Drawing a blank

This is totally a waste of a post. There was something I wanted to write about, but I am drawing a blank as to what it was! :( My mind is over taken by the list of phone calls I need to make today.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Vanity update

I know I told some of you that I was aiming to have this all completed by last weekend. That just didn't happen. I started sewing the pleats into the skirt which I have divided into 3 sections. I'm currently working on the smallest section & am having to rip out the stitches for a second time. If the kids cooperate tonight with bed time then I am hoping to knock most if not all of this project out. That also means the sewing machine has to work with me, too.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Mac & Cheese Lasagna

I had this at a friends house one night for dinner. It can be found on the Kraft foods website. It's easy, quick & goes over well with kids. I'm a very picky lasagna eater. I don't like all the veggies some people put in them & Ricotta cheese frightens me.

Prep Time:
20 min
Total Time:
40 min
4 servings
1 pkg. (7-1/4 oz.) KRAFT Macaroni & Cheese Dinner, prepared as directed on package using Light Preparation directions
1-1/2 cups spaghetti sauce
1/2 lb. lean ground beef, cooked, drained
1 cup KRAFT Shredded Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella Cheese
2 Tbsp. KRAFT 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese

PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Spoon half of the prepared Dinner into lightly greased 8-inch square baking dish.

TOP with half each of the spaghetti sauce, meat and shredded cheese. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

BAKE 20 min. or until heated through.

That's the exact directions from the website. I use a whole pound of ground beef & that seems barely enough.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Red Velvet Valentine's Day cupcakes

I know Valentines Day is February 14th & today is only the 3rd. I need to get the Pilot's Valentine's box out tomorrow. I wanted to make him red velvet cake in a jar. I used a heart shaped cookie cutter & powdered sugar for the topping instead of icing.
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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Alice in Wonderland

I have finally come up with a theme for Princess's room... Alice in Wonderland. I was going to go the fairies route, but the Alice idea is sticking to me better. Not exactly sure how it will all come together yet, but I'm working on something fun for her. Previously there wasn't really a theme theme, just a color/fabric theme (sage toile with accents of blue & pink). I'm so excited about this project.

Monday, January 21, 2008

My dream vanity

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It needs a little work & doesn't look like much now, but, yes, this is what I have been wanting. I was browsing craigslist to see what if anyone was getting rid of any type of vanity. The Pilot turned out double closets into a walk in & half of one of them into an area for me to sit & do my make-up (now maybe I will wear it more often, lol). Well to my surprise I stumbled across an ad for the above vanity. I was even more surprised at the price... $15!!! Can't beat that. :) I saw that the ad was placed well over a month ago. I crossed my fingers & e-mailed the person asking if they still had it. They did!! I've already sanded the multiple coats of paint off. I'm on the hunt for the perfect fabric for the skirt. I think I might paint it Sherwin Williams "Reflecting Pool" which is the same color as our bedroom (think Tiffany box blue). It's very sturdy, just needs a new knob (which I went & got before I even took it home), a skirt, & a coat of paint. I'll post pictures when I am done.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

I bought...

My first sewing machine yesterday! It's a Singer. Now I need to bust a move on all my sewing projects I have lined up for myself.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

So excited!!!!

I counted up all my online photo printing credits & I have close to 30o. That a whole lotta pictures I need to find before I lose out on the chance to print them for free! 200 them I got for collecting Pampers points. I made it to 150 points and plan on cashing them in for the 200 photos. I need to sit down and load pictures. I have several different sites I use. I discovered a new one last week that has 99 cent flat shipping rate (www.winkflash.com). They give you 50 free prints for signing up. I sent my grandparents a bunch of pictures of the kids for 99 cents!! So with 300 credits I guess that means I must get my rear in gear and catch up on my scrapbooking.

Spiced bunt cake

I made the pilot a spiced bunt cake with cream cheese frosting drizzled on it. It was really yummy. I did a bunt cake just for something different. It turned out rather pretty, too. I forgot to take a picture before we cut into it, but I do have an after picture. This is what happens when you have a 2 year old who is an expert counter climber and he is insistent on having cake for breakfast.

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Monday, January 7, 2008

Seasame Peanut Noodles

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2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon chili garlic paste
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup Hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup water
1 pound linguine
1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil (should be brown in color)
1 1/2 cup snow peas, thinly sliced at a slant (on a bias)
1 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 cup scallion greens, thinly sliced at a slant (on a bias)
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
1 lime, cut into wedges for serving


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Add the chili garlic paste—it should sizzle when it is added—and cook for 30 seconds.
  2. Whisk in the peanut butter and Hoisin sauce, allowing to heat through.
  3. Remove the sauce from the heat and whisk in the rice wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons soy sauce and water until smooth, reserve.
  4. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and place in a large bowl.
  5. Combine Peanut Dipping Sauce with sesame oil and stir well. Add sauce to warm pasta; toss to combine. Let noodles cool slightly.
  6. Add snow peas, cilantro, scallion greens, and sesame seeds to pasta. Toss to incorporate. Serve room temperature or chilled with a lime wedge.
Tip: If you don’t have access to fresh Chinese-style noodles at your local grocery store just use a good-quality linguine. Rice noodles are too fine to handle the intense sauce, so stick with a wheat flour noodle or try a buckwheat noodle. Adjust (increase) the chili garlic paste to make it spicier.