Happy Christmas in July – Today, I have this adorable kitschy retro santa that I finished up just in the knick of time. 🎅🏻 🎄 🥰 Now, off to watch Tom & Jerry with hubby 📺 😺🐭
Vintage planters turned into cute pin cushions. These cuties came from my father-in-laws estate. Not sure why he had them and if he ever used them for anything, but when my husband saw them, he knew I’d surely make them into something for my sewing room/studio. Inspired by Lori Holt, check out her tutorial on how to make pin cushions from vintage finds. 🥰
Snuck in another 4th of July finish – just in the knick of time as we enter the last week of July. Fourth of July Sampler by The Humble Sitcher 🥰. Such a cute piece – I’ll be giving it a quick dip into a cozy tea-bath and fashioning it into a pillow tuck 💕 ✂️ ☺️.
Hope you carve out some hobby time in your world – creativity is a health attribute, let’s harness it!
The Talmadge’s enjoying a beautiful May sunset .
While I love all seasons including Winter – Winter lacks in the area of green/flowery life. Well, this year I decided why not grow some of those gorgeous paper whites and have a pot of them in the house all winter. I just knew for sure that this would satisfy my need of green growth which it did however . . . how is it that this gorgeous flower yields such a foul scent?
Imagine my excitement of watering and watching my great pot of green stems growing and then the oh so awaited display of flowers appear to leave me wondering what the heck this foul smell was in the kitchen. After standing there smelling the air for several minutes trying to identify what and where this smell is coming from, I realized the scent must be coming from our cat’s litter box which didn’t make sense because I had just scooped it so why would the smell be waffling all the way into the kitchen? Gosh maybe my cat isn’t drinking enough water which is making her urine more pungent – oh gross! To my surprise of arriving at the litter box it didn’t smell in that room – huh interesting – back to the kitchen to figure this out. Now I’m feeling like Walter Matthau in the Grumpy Old Men movie where Jack Lemmon places a dead fish into Walter’s car and Walter goes to drive it and says “Shoe Wee what’s that smell…ohhhh man what’s that smell?” LOL – Love that movie! Well as you can figure it was the gorgeous paper whites permeating our home with this awful cat urine scent. I still can’t figure out how it is that these gorgeous flowers yield this awful foul scent.
To make matters worse, I couldn’t part with this pot of stink that I put so much love and care into. It became a daily discussion within the household. Michael couldn’t understand how I could keep such stink in our house especially considering I have a real hang up with smells. I couldn’t explain my rational other than they were so pretty, it gave me a daily reminder that spring will arrive, and I couldn’t part with this green life I had created.
I have 10 more bulbs in the fridge waiting to transform themselves into stinky life however I’m thinking I’ll wait and plant them in the spring and display them on our deck.
I’ve decided I want to blog more. Rather than just thinking about doing it, I’m starting right now. I will be posting on this blog once a week for all of 2011.
I know it won’t be easy, but it might be fun, inspiring, awesome and wonderful. Therefore I’m promising to make use of The DailyPost, and the community of other bloggers with similiar goals, to help me along the way, including asking for help when I need it and encouraging others when I can.
If you already read my blog, I hope you’ll encourage me with comments and likes, and good will along the way.
Emm YUMMO! I decided to bake one of Mike’s favorites today and thought I’d share the recipe and a quick picture guide in biscotti making. I dare say the finished presentation looks pretty good but not nearly as good as they taste! The recipe originated from a patient at my office.
So preheat that hot pot (oven) of yours to 350 degrees and lets get mixing ~ These are the only ingredients you’ll need. Looks pretty easy right? It really is!
This is how your dough should look once you’ve finished mixing it. Go ahead and plop it on the counter like I have and give er a little log shape like I did. The dough should be fairly easy to handle and should NOT stick to your fingers if it does add more flour a little at a time until it’s not sticky anymore.
Now cut your log in half and make two logs out of it. Place both logs on your pre-greased and floured cookie sheet and shape like I did into about 2″ x 10″ logs. Your logs should look something like this.
Now stick em in the hot pot for 25-30 minutes until golden. Umm I must say this is the FANCIEST oven I’ve ever used much less owned in my entire life! I mean I’m really just a chick from the sticks who is undoubtedly thrilled with this loaded appliance. Amen for gas ranges and ovens that bake evenly!
Pull your logs out and they should look something like this
Lower oven temp to 300 degrees. Let your logs cool for 10 minutes and then slice those babies up into 1/2″ slices
Place the slices back onto the cookie sheet(s). Place your cookie sheet(s) back into your hot pot and bake 20 minutes longer, until surface is golden and crisp. See those two lonely floating pieces? Well those two are the heal of one log. I have to admit that I LOVE these little guys . . . I will eat two of them at this stage and eat the other two once they’ve been baked for their final time.
Friends and family who’ve had these little pieces of almondie heaven leave droll on my counter tops. So if you enjoy almond flavor you must give them a try. You’ll notice in the recipe to follow that you can change the nuts and flavoring and use the basic dough to make ANY flavor biscotti you like.
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup granulated sugar
2-4 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees; grease and flour cookie sheet.
In a large bowl, beat eggs with oil; add sugar and almond extract. Continue beating about 5 minutes until mixture is thick and pale. Fold in chopped almonds.
Sift flour with baking powder. Stir into egg mixture using wooden spoon then hands, if necessary.
Shape dough into 2 logs about 2″ x 10″ each, and arrange on cookie sheet. Using a wet spatula, flatten top, and smooth sides of logs. ***Note from Brandi: I don’t use a wet spatula to shape my logs, I just use my hands and add a little bit of flour onto the log to give it a tiny bit of a floured surface and makes it easier to shape.
Bake 25 – 30 minutes until golden. Remove from oven and lower oven temperature to 300 degrees.
Let logs cool on cookie sheet about 10 minutes. Cut into 1/2″ slices using a serrated knife. Lay slices flat on cookie sheet and bake 20 minutes longer, until surface is golden and crisp.
When done, transfer cookies to wire racks and let cool. Store in airtight container.
Side Note: You can change the nuts & flavoring. Add dried orange flavored cranberries and orange extract. Use this as a basic dough and add whatever you like.
I spent the day yesterday doing one of the things I enjoy most in life . . . crafting. Here is what awaited each of us at our assigned seats. INDEED YUMMY stuff in that pie tin! And I didn’t even get my bag filled with more delectables in this picture.
Charlotte Lyons hosted and taught a fabulous class on making felt cottage houses. Here is one of her gorgeous master pieces.
Here’s mine . . . not nearly as fully decorated as Charlotte’s. But these cottages are a work in progress. You add to them here and there to your heart’s content. I’m loving my choice in chimney construction, for sure buttons are a girls best friend especially in the cream color family!!! Gosh I’m thinking I play it too safe with my choice in colors or lack there of! I should let loose and craft something in a wild saucy color pallet. Yeah I need a little sauciness added to my play it safe personality.
As if having the opportunity to meet and be taught by Charlotte Lyons wasn’t enough, we were served a delectable breakfast, lunch and snack by Charlotte’s good friend Suzanne who I just read is a former Vogue food editor and gourmet chef. Oh my can she bake and cook all the while keeping her vogues on the down low.
Oh wait, one more thing . . . I won this as a door prize! I was skipping with glee when my number was drawn for this piece! It’s hand made by Elizabeth Williams who sells her goodies on Etsy.
I know I know, I should be posting pics of the new house but wanted to share my awesome finds rummaging the flea market yesterday. I love the hunt and the treasures awaiting my arrival. Thank you Michele for spending the morning with me and enjoying the hunt together, I had a great time and the homemade cinnamon & sugar donuts are to die for! YUMMO!!!
My most favorite find of the day is this gorgeous shabby storage cabinet which was much needed in my studio. They wanted $125 & I got them down to $100 . . . SWEEEET!!!! The black wire basket sitting atop the cabinet is another find for $3. It will have a new home this fall on the kitchen island. The day before I had found a similar basket but it was new and $20. The funny thing is that I LOVE the $3 basket much more than the $20 one! Rummaging sure pays off!
And these little lovelies are simply adorable, the cabinet cards of the children are so sweet. The vintage yard stick unfolds and I have an awesome plan for it too for the Scottie Buddy Boy Collars and Leashes section of the studio. The blue jewel and tiny spoons just couldn’t be passed by! We’ll definitely be making another trip again this fall for more treasures!
Adorable picture of my buddy loving his momma or wait . . . maybe I’m loving my buddy? Well today I wanted to post about this little animal that brings such BIG love to our family! He’s constant, loyal and well plain accepting of all my recent moodiness, me and Mike’s urge to work all the time, Darcie and Pele fighting, brown boxes all over the house stuffed with everything that used to blanket our home, and the decrease in his carefree walks due to Mike and I being overworked. Soooooo many things are changing around him but he remains the one constant within this household. The steadiness and indebtedness dogs provide to mankind is truly amazing to me! One of God’s greatest creations!!!