Tuesday, December 11

Holiday Recipe Flip Book

This past Sunday my friends Kristi, Rhonda and I took a class at our local Recollections scrapbooking store. This store is going out of business at the end of the year and I think every woman in the area is mourning. We made this Holiday Recipe Flip Book. It was so fun to get together with girlfriends and just be crafty with someone else doing the prepwork.
I think I am going to remove the "recipe" stickers off the bottom and stamp the word instead. I plan on duplicating this idea with new designer paper from the Spring & Summer Catalog next year.
There were a total of ten recipes and each one was a 6x6 scrapbook page. The 6x6 pages were attached to a blank paper covered frame with rings.

Monday, December 10

Retired Accessory List

Retired wheels and accessories are available while supplies last, so make sure you place your orders no later than January 1.

You can access the list by clicking here.

Gigantic BRAK from Carole Davids for Micaela

As some of you might have noticed, our daughter Micaela wears a bow pretty much 24/7. I started this when she was an infant and now she knows that we can't leave the house unless she's got a bow on her head.

Well, I was absolutely floored when I opened a box from Carole Davids, one of my readers in Evansville, Indiana this past week. I could not believe the GORGEOUS hair bows, clippies and embellished socks she sent our daughter Micaela. There were five bows, five clippies (technical term) and five pairs of beaded & furry socks.

Check out the slide show below to see each one up close. I love the school house ribbon she used on several of the bows, the little Christmas tree clippy is so darn cute I want to use it to embellish a card and I love the jingling of the bead & button socks.

Carole had emailed me about Micaela's school uniform colors (which are Navy & Red) a few weeks ago so I had a hunch she was going to send Micaela something but this was more than I could have imagined.

I will be taking pictures of Micaela wearing everthing in the coming days but I wanted to post a public thank you as soon as I could.

Thank you CAROLE!

Carole does craft shows in the Evansville area, please write me if you are interested in her information.

BRAK: Blog Random Act of Kindness

BRAK from Carole Davids


RAK from Mary Gardina

Mary Gardina is one of my local sidelines. We started out as demonstrators at the exact same time. Mary is a fabulous stamper, her stuff is GORGEOUS! We tell her she needs to start set up a gallery on SCS, blog and apply for Stampin' Up!'s Artisan Award.

Anyway, Mary needed to borrow some Jumbo Eyelets a couple of weeks ago. I happened to have a brand new box. I am so glad I was able to help out because look what she gave me as a Thank You!

Isn't this totally adorable. It has a magnet on the back so I can put it on the fridge. She even wrapped it cute.

Thank you Mary!

More Holiday Cookies...

A couple of weeks ago I received my Kraft Foods Food & Family magazine in the mail. After finally getting a chance to read it, I marked about 10 recipes to try. Last week when I had a little time, I decided to make the Mint Thins found on page 6.

Basically it's Ritz crackers dipped in mint chocolate and sprinkled with crushed peppermint candy. The simplicity of the recipe really captured my attention. I thought well, "if these taste like the Girl Scout Thin Mints, I could have Thin Mints year round" so I decided to try them out.

Makes: 3 doz.

1 pkg. (8 squares) BAKER'S Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate
1/4 tsp. peppermint extract
1 sleeve RITZ Crackers (36 crackers)
1 peppermint candy cane (6 inch), crushed

MICROWAVE chocolate in small microwaveable bowl as directed on package. Stir until completely melted. Blend in extract.

DIP crackers in melted chocolate, completely coating crackers with chocolate. Carefully scrape off excess chocolate. Place on waxed paper-covered baking sheets; sprinkle with crushed candy.

REFRIGERATE 30 min. or until chocolate is firm.

Very simple!

Well these are pretty good but a little more time consuming than I expected. Getting the chocolate to "perfectly" cover the cracker is something I still need to perfect. When I started I had my handy little assistant Micaela helping but I quickly figured out that melted chocolate and two year olds don't mix. As you can see, mine don't look as perfect as the ones in the magazine but they did taste pretty good. I recommend crushing your peppermints in a food processor. (I used my KitchenAid Food Processor). Although the large chunks of peppermint look good on the chocolate covered cracker (see Kraft's picture), I think it's more pleasant in your mouth without the chunks--- just MHO.

After I made the chocolate batch I decided to try some with White Chocolate. I was trying to create a swirled effect with red food coloring but I got carried away swirling and ended up with pink chocolate! In the end, the pink chocolate mint thins were preferred by my in house food critique (AKA hubby).

I hope you will take the time to try these.

You can subscribe to the Kraft Food & Family magazine by clicking here.

You can access all of the recipes found in the Holiday 2007 issue by clicking here.

Thanks for stopping by, happy baking or 'dipping'!

RAK from Denise Sullivan

Isn't this card gorgeous? Denise Sullivan is my Upline. I let her borrow my Holy Triptych stamp set and she enclosed the card she made with the set. Thank you Denise!

Wednesday, December 5

Holiday Snowball Cookies by Nestle Toll House

These cookies are really good! We had alot of fun baking. Micaela had fun "helping", she loves to see the KitchenAid mixer in action! When she was younger she would cry while sitting in her high chair because she wanted to watch it run-- Our little story even made it on a KA employee website. Anyway, she loves to be in the kitchen and this recipe was perfect because we had to make balls out of the cookie dough. She's had alot of practice making balls because she plays with PlayDoh often. The biggest challenge was keeping her from picking out the morsels!

I used:

  • KitchenAid Stand Mixer to mix the ingredients
  • KitchenAid Food Processor to finely chop the pecans
  • Reynolds Parchment Paper on my cookie sheets (makes cleanup a snap)

You can view the recipe online here

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 2/3 cups (10-oz. pkg.) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® SWIRLED™ Holiday Morsels
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts
Powdered sugar

Directions:PREHEAT oven to 375° F. BEAT butter, 3/4 cup sugar, vanilla extract and salt in large mixer bowl until creamy. Gradually beat in flour. Stir in morsels and nuts. Shape level tablespoons of dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. Place on ungreased baking sheets. BAKE for 10 to 12 minutes or until cookies are set and lightly browned. Remove from oven. Sift powdered sugar over hot cookies on baking sheets. Cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Sprinkle with additional powdered sugar, if desired. Store in airtight containers.

Pictures of my little baker, below....

My little baker

Tuesday, December 4

I am back...

What a busy few weeks we've had! After being in the valley for a week, two days after we arrived, my parents and brother were in town for a convention in Fort Worth and at the same time my long time friend M'Lissa was in town from Shreveport for the weekend as was another girlfriend from high school plus I had several KA events. S0, last night as I went to bed, I thought tomorrow (meaning today) would be the first calm day we've had in a few weeks. I didn't need to be anywhere, Micaela didn't have school, no company, absolutely no agenda. My plan was to hang the Christmas lights in the front porch and bushes, do some stamping and maybe even some baking. Well, it didn't quite turn out that way....

I woke up with my left eye sealed closed (pink eye). Needless to say, it was a very rough morning. The first thing I did was remove my extended wear contacts and put on my glasses. I don't wear my glasses very often so it takes a while for my eyes to adjust (everything seems curved to me-- so I tend to do everything slow). I think I've washed my hands 1000 times today because I don't want anyone else to get it. Micaela kept asking if I was crying. I finally put a gauze patch on my left eye so I wouldn't be wiping off so much. Then Micaela thought I looked like a pirate. When DH got home after noon, I was still in my pj's, wearing the patch with my glasses and I hadn't even brushed my hair! Yesterday we celebrated our 41st month anniversary so when he walked in the door, I told him, "this is what happens to wives after 41 months!" ha ha!

I was able to get a doctor's appointment in the afternoon. I waited for almost 30 min in the waiting room, saw the doc for less than 5 minutes, got charged my $30 co-pay and was sent on mt merry way with a prescription. I went straight to the pharmacy and was told there was an hour wait. So I wandered over the grocery store nearby to kill some time. While I looked around I saw this little pad of recipes by the Nestle Toll House stuff. After reading all the recipes, I decided the Holiday Snowball Cookies with Holiday Swirled Morsels looked kinda fun so I bought the morsels and headed back to the pharmacy to get my prescription. The line was long and finally after another 15-20 minutes I got to the front. I gave the attendant my name, she got my prescription and says "it's $25". I figured they had not entered in our insurance info so I give her the card again and expected the amount to decrease by say ten dollars. Nope, the attendant tells me "the $25 price is with insurance, otherwise it would be $75"! So I pay and go.

I got home 3 hours after I left, go to use the drops and I am shocked at the size of the bottle. It's teeny weeny. I mean teeny weeny, it's like a fourth of the size of a reinker! I think there is more saliva in my mouth than what is in the bottle! So that was my day...

After dinner I was determined to bake the cookie recipe from Nestle.... See the post above for details.