Friday, October 30, 2009

Joli Paquet Trick or Treat Swap

For the last couple weeks, my focus has been on the Joli Paquet Trick or Treat swap. It was truly a pleasure participating. The above mosaic is a bit of what I sent to my partner. Oops, and I did forgot to take pictures of a few additional items I sent too...
Well actually, what's more exciting is the totally fantastic package I received from Cerri!!
If you haven't visited her online boutique, you really must!Cerri really knew how to indulge me. I was so ecstatic to open all the treats she packed into my tote bag. I just love it! Take a look at the tote she embellished - the beautiful picture of a dark haired woman framed with an assortment of vintage lace and trims - gorgeous!
I really love the sparkly brooch she added too! Check out the smokey gray colored rhinestones. Aren't they fabulous!?
My oh my, was my tote ever overflowing with wonderful treats.
I love this silver hospital cup! Now why do you suppose we don't get silver cups at hospitals nowadays? I think I would have enjoyed a silver cup immensely when I had my babies in the hospital - I'm just sayin'... ;o) Cerri filled the cup with lots of pretty mother of pearl buttons, rhinestone trim and even another sparkly brooch!Take a look at these cool silhouettes! I love silhouettes!! I was so excited when I opened these. Cerri used old ledger paper for the backgroud - the old handwriting has so much charm!
She also filled a cute envelope with all sorts of images and cutouts which I can't wait to use!

I was desperately needing a new boo banner. Guess what? I got one! Here it is hanging with our pumpkin who'll be carved tonight.
This darling little ghost garland looks so cute hanging from one of my vintage funeral baskets. I got one of her prize ribbons too! It's really beautiful!!
Now, not only was I spoiled by Cerri, but so were the girls. She included two sweet decorated tote bags filled with yummy treats and even a fun craft for them to do too. Both girls were so giggly and excited while opening their gifts - we all had fun!!
Thanks so much Cerri! This was such a fun swap to share with you. I absolutely love everything - you completely "got" me! Thank you, Thank you!
**Please be sure to stop by the Joli Paquet blog and check out the links for other swap participants. It's always really fun to see what we each received.**

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Halloween Party Cups

As soon as Jenny posted her tutorial for Halloween nut cups for Joli Paquet, I grabbed my stash of old photos 'cause I Just had to make some of these!

Nut cups make a neat addition to any table setting - such a fun party favor!

Besides trying to clean-up the house today, I'll be making a few more of these, that's for sure.
Enjoy your weekend!!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Almond Joy Cupcakes

Can you tell I'm home bound with a sick girl??
I have all sorts of things I should be doing, but what do I do..... I bake.
Hubby's home today also. He's working on fencing in our property, and I knew he'd love this treat. I've seen all sorts of Almond Joy cupcake recipe variations out there, but I wanted easy.
Here's my no fuss how to:
Prepare a store bought devils food cake mix according to package directions. Pour batter into 24 cupcake papers.
Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 7-8 minutes, remove from oven. Add chopped up Almond Joy candy bars to each partially baked cupcake. Return to oven and continue baking until done - about 7-8 minutes more.
When cooled, frost as desired.
*I went easy and piped on store bought chocolate frosting that I doctored up with almond extract. The toasted coconut made them even prettier.
There you have it. No fuss and oh so good!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Comfort Food

My mom makes the best rice pudding. It used to be, that she only made it during Christmas time since it's one of our Scandinavian traditions.
After each of my girls were born, she would bring over a big batch for me to enjoy. It is my comfort food. Sydney particularly loves it too. I tell her it's because that's all I ever ate while I was nursing her... hee hee
It really is too good just to have a Christmas time, so I make it often. Since Sydney has been home sick this week she needed some cheering up. I knew just the thing - rice pudding! Oh boy, did her eyes lit up when she saw what was baking. Guess I'll be making more tomorrow too...
Mom's Rice Pudding
Cook 1/2 Cup rice with 1 Cup water
Scaled 2 Cups milk
Beat 3 eggs with 3/4 Cups sugar and 1 teaspoon almond extract
Mix together scaled milk with egg mixture a little at a time (so the eggs don't scramble).
Add the rice when slightly cooled.
Pour into a small casserole dish, sprinkle with ground nutmeg. Bake in a hot water bath at 350 degrees for approximately 45 minutes

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Black & Cream...

...and a very very slight touch of red orange - are the colors I've been playing with lately. I participated in the Joli Paquet Trick or Treat swap, and shipped out my partners package yesterday. I do hope Cerri enjoys what I sent...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Batty For Applesauce Donuts

While checking out craft projects here, I knew right away I wanted to add a swarm of bats to our front door too. A fun, easy project making a big spooky impact to any entry.
With all that crafting, homemade donuts sounded like a wonderful treat. I've been making all sorts of goodies from a huge crate of tasty apples my mom brought back from Eastern Washington. Besides apple pie, we love homemade applesauce. I made a batch Friday, and saved out a cup to use for making applesauce donuts.
Ever since my friend Elaine of Tinker Verve made these donuts, I've been wanting to do the same. Oh boy, are they delicious!
... and especially yummy served from a cute scarecrow.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Flirty Pillowcase Apron

The other day while I was shopping at the fabric store, a book caught my eye. Now, I can't remember the title... but it was all about repurposing pillowcases. As I flipped through the pages, an apron similar to this grabbed my attention.
I went to my stash of vintage pillowcases, put a few together that complimented eachother and voila' - a cute and flirty apron!
Only material from 3 pillowcases was used to construct the entire apron, nothing else. I love that! Oh, and the hand embroidered kittens, love 'em!

Thanks for stopping by. Hope you all are having a great week!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Spooky Black Cat Treat Buckets

I just finished a few black cat treat buckets to add to my Halloween display.
The buckets were a lot of fun to make. I started with a 4 1/4" flower pot (similar to a peat pot) and cut off the rim leaving two ears for the cat.
Next I covered the entire pot with fast mache' and let it dry in the oven for an hour or so. When the outside was dry, I covered the inside, again with fast mache', and let it dry too.
When both in and out side of the pot were dry, I drilled holes for a handle, and then covered the entire piece with orange paint.
Once the orange paint had dried, I painted over it with black, leaving some of the orange showing through for an aged look. The fun part of painting the cat faces came next!
To finish, I used chenille pipe cleaner for a handle and filled 'em with crinkled paper.
They're now ready to fill with treats!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Originally From Grandpa

When something gets broken around here, I don't let it get to me. I have kids, things break. Although, more then a few months ago, something from my childhood was broken to smithereens, it really bummed me out. One day, the girls came to me crying. They knew mommy was going to be upset. Apparently, while throwing a stuffed animal back and forth to each other in their room they caused an accident. All it took was one uncontrolled toss and my music box fell off their dresser smashing to the floor into a million pieces.
You see, the music box was a special gift to me from my Grandpa L. 3 weeks after I was born, he experienced a severe seizure at church. It was discovered then that he had a horrific brain tumor. He went home to heaven 8 months later, when I was 9 months old. I didn't get to know Grandpa, but I've always been told how much he enjoyed holding me when I was a baby. I treasured this gift immensely since it was the only thing I ever received from him. Growing up, I kept the music box on a shelf above my bed. Many times I would wind it up and listen to it play "Silent Night" over and over til it would slowly unwind to a stop. My music box definitely showed signs of being loved much - although, nothing super glue couldn't fix over the years. The final fall, did it in. I couldn't repair it, believe me, I tried.
Fast forward to last Thursday. While I was browsing the shelves at a local Goodwill, spotted out of the corner of my eye was my music box! I spun around swooped in and snatched it up so quickly, those in the isle didn't even know who/what went by.
Even though my music box has now been replaced, It still looks and feels just like the original from my Grandpa. I couldn't be happier!