Friday, December 28, 2007

now that christmas is behind us

So much going on this week with Christmas and all. So much I wanted to get done for the holidays, but ran out of time. I wanted to make some homemade gifts, but never got to them.
I wanted to make more cookies, but never got to those either - probably a good thing because my house is overflowing with sugary treats.
The new year will bring healthier eating habits around our house once again, as well as better exercise habits. Paul and I both want to get in better shape so Im thankful to have a workout buddy. Looking forward to watching the Biggest Loser Couple show for inspiration.
One thing I did get done this week was to be able to work on my knitting.

Mom has been teaching me how to knit socks. This is a pair she made. When I say made, I mean she spun the yarn and knitted the socks. She loves to spin and its a good thing because her hobby room is packed with rubbermaid totes full of fibers waiting to be spun. Her favorite thing to knit is socks so she's been trying to get me to learn too.
These are mine so far...I've ripped them out and started over 3 times. I hate it when I make mistakes. I dont know how to fix them, so I just rip the entire thing apart and start at the beginning again. I sure hope I dont get to the toe and make a mistake ;)
Third time is a charm because its feeling so much more comfortable now using the double pointed needles and Im happier to not see so many mistakes in them. This yarn is a little thicker and my needles a little bigger than Mom uses, but for learning Im not too worried about it.
And check out those frames:) Something else I took the time to learn how to do this week.
One more thing I wanted to share. We got some new lamps for the living room this week. We were in Target doing some christmas shopping and found these.

The shades have a demask print on the inside of the shade. It doesnt really show until you turn the light on. Really pretty and they look good in that room.


and in closing, of course I need to include a Macie picture

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Blissed out..............

this weekend I finally got a chance to bake something!!!!
It seems like years since I've done any holiday baking, or any other time of the year truthfully.
But after someone posted this Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bar recipe, I knew for certain that I needed to MAKE the time to whip some of these up.
The recipe includes white chocolate chips, orange extract and dried cranberries, frosted with a cream cheese frosting that's flavored with orange extract. You top with some diced dried cranberries, orange zest then drizzle on some melted white chocolate.....................total Bliss!
Sure glad I made the time to make these.
And hopefully I'll have some more time next weekend to do a little more baking.
Im impatient to make some Biscotti.
Because it's not Christmas until I've made them.
Yes, Mom has been baking them for weeks on end,
and yes I will get some on Christmas day...
but something about making biscotti is part of Christmas for me.
Just like decorating the tree and writing Christmas cards.
Which reminds me, I need to do that too...

and miss Macie is getting quite use to being spoiled it appears.
I think I'm going to need a dog whisperer if she doesn't quit waking up in the middle of the night.
Looks like this puppers is in desperate need of a haircut.
oh I've tried.
If you can imagine trying to cut away the fur around the eyes of a wild cougar, you'll get a fairly good idea of what it was like to try and give her a little trim.
Somethings are just better left to professionals.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

a holiday mosaic

Do you flickr?

Boy, I sure do.

I cant stop...it sucks me in and I find myself searching random tags just to see what will pop up. Sometimes I search by a color, a place, the weather, seasons, holidays...just anything I can come up with. Its about the best place I've found for inspiration.
I can get absolutely lost in browsing pictures images on flickr. The mosaic I made today is from some of the images that I recently came across and saved as my favorites. After browsing this site, I just want to pick up my camera and start snapping away.
The lights, colors and warmth of these photos are some of the things that make this season so special to me. They inspire me to see things differently, to experiment with light and angle, to photograph things we walk by every day without thinking they're photo worthy.

I have a long way to go with my photography skills, but the people who post their work on this site are a constant inspiration. These images remind me of things I want to photograph. My greatest challenge when posting these mosaics is getting the credits to these pictures to print...this took me over 30 minutes and its still not linking correectly...so I apologize to these artists.
1. CHRISTMAS LIGHTS, 2. madeleines, 3. Christmas time!, 4. the plan, 5. his tattered red coat, 6. Hello Cupcake, 7. Silver Bell, 8. candlelight, 9. oh balls, 10. christmas, 11. Christmas Bakery Fun Project (3/7) - Let it snow!, 12. Out of Focus, 13. the red door, 14. Artsy wall at Starbucks, 15. Strawberry roll cake, 16. Happy Valentine's Day to All My Flickr Friends!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Lazy Sunday's

Sundays should be like this...

Its snowing outside,
a toasty fire is burning in the woodstove,
bread is rising on the kitchen counter,
I'm learning how to knit socks
The seahawks are winning-finally!
and Macie is enjoying her first full weekend at home.
So far this is one of her favorite toys...the squeeky chicken.
This is a perfect Sunday afternoon.













Saturday, December 08, 2007

baby its cold outside

We were going out to Petsmart to find a dog bed that would fit in the car.
It was so cold outside and Macie was shivering. It was the perfect opportunity to get some use out of this valour dog sweater...as laughable as it is, she stopped shivering :) gotta admit, it does look pretty cute.
As expensive as these things are I could have bought a sweater for myself...no kidding!
I think I'll be knitting her sweaters myself from now on. She's the only person who would actually wear anything that I might knit. Poor thing. The other dogs are going to laugh at her.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Make a flake

This is a fun website I found last year. Some tips- make sure you start your cuts at the edge of the page, the little button in the middle of the scissors will turn green. Every time you want to turn, click then you can turn, click again, turn, click again....FUN!!!

and a few pictures I took of Macie last night. Not the best because this little dog does not sit still unless she's asleep. Hope to get some better ones this weekend when I don't have to use a flash.
















Miss Muffet on her velvet tuffet.
I'm going to be forever combing the hair off the velvet Christmas pillows I think.

you either love 'em or you don't


Me?

I love them.
At least I thought I did.
Im usually so excited every Christmas to pick up a few boxes of these. They bring back childhood christmas memories for me...like ribbon candy and those little lifesaver books.
We got those in our stockings every year.
So, the other day I grabbed a box of Queen Anne Cordial Cherries Target.
And they tasted awful...like brown wax over cherries.
Soooo not at all the way I remembered them.
Obviously I didnt have high hopes considering the cost of a box of these. After all, what would you expect for .99 a box?
And sure, I could buy more expensive cherry cordials with good milk chocolate, but these cheap boxes sold in the Walgreens stores are what I remember.
One more childhood memory shattered...
Maybe this yearI'll make some of these. Im not so much into candy making, but these look easy enough even for me...

Brandy Cordial Cherries
1 (10-ounce) jar maraschino cherries with stems
1/2 cup brandy (optional)
1 (8-ounce) package semisweet chocolate baking squares, chopped
Drain maraschino cherries, and return to jar. Pour brandy, if desired, in jar; cover with a lid, and freeze 8 hours. Soaked cheeries can be left in the freezer for up to two days before you dip them into the chocolate.
Drain cherries, and pat dry, reserving brandy for another use.
Melt two-thirds of chocolate baking squares in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring until a candy thermometer reaches 115°. Remove from heat; add remaining chocolate, and stir until candy thermometer reaches 89° and chocolate is smooth.
Dip cherries quickly into melted chocolate, coating well.
Place cherries on wax paper, stem sides up, and cool.

Also picked up some Cherry Cordial Hershey Kisses the other day...cant wait to try those!
That should about do it for my chocolate cherry fix for another year.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Christmas comes early

at our house. She's had a long day which included a drive all the way across the state in a white out snow storm, but she's here. She came in the house, sniffed around a little and found this perfectly comfy spot under the christmas tree (how did she know?) and promptly fell fast asleep.
She looks much bigger than she really is. She's about 8" long and weighs about hmmmmm, maybe 2 lbs. Cute as a bug.Her name is Maci.
Anyone who knows me will recognize her right away. Her markings are almost the exact same as Elliott's, minus the tongue hanging out.