Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

Yes I was one of those dog owners this year. We found a cheap halloween costume for the dog, and decided to dress him up. He hated it. Can't you just see the look of excitement on his face? Anyways, Happy Halloween!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

I'm not the only one enjoying this weather.

This past weekend the weather finally started to feel like spring/summer. It was almost 90 on Saturday and then again today. Yesterday it was a pleasant 65 or so. We were able to break out the grill, eat outside, and really just spend some fun time outside.

These past few days have been HEAVEN for my dog Baxter. He has spent as much time outside as possible. Which of course has gotten him into trouble a few times, but most of the time he just lays in the grass and watches for squirrels and chipmunks (the source of said trouble when he tries to follow them into their homes under the patio and digs some holes).

Fri I didn't have to work and it was a beautiful 70 degrees outside so we decided to pack up and go to the pack for a while. He had so much fun. We played fetch, laid in the grass and unfortunately for Baxter, got stung by a bee(we think). Here's some great shots from our time at the part on Friday.

Sitting Nice

Laying out watching for the squirrels.
What was that?
Playing fetch at the park
Laying in the grass with his favorite toy, his "stick". It used to squeak, however he chewed it enough so it no longer squeaks, but he still loves it and even tries to bring it into bed with him at night.
And a quick message from Baxter, "no more internets mommy, come play outside with me!"

I will definitely be spending a lot of outside time with him in the weeks and months to come. He loves just laying outside in the sun then playing for a little while, then relaxing and cooling off in the shaded patch next to the house. I can't blame him it is utterly beautiful outside(even if it's supposed to rain again tomorrow, at least it will be warm rain!)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Feeling Nostalgic

Well I finished my quilt square for my cousin's wedding quilt tonight. It made me really think how fun it was to plan my wedding and get ready for it. She is about 4 months out now. It's so weird to think that as of Saturday I'll have been married for 6 MONTHS already.

The colors are all the colors her BM's(myself included) will be wearing and we will be carrying sunflowers. The center brown fabric I used for my own wedding on my Escort Card board. I wanted some way to pass on something from my wedding to her. This was the perfect way.

Her mother's wonderful friend is organizing this and I can't wait to see the finished product. I received my own wedding quilt as a wedding gift with scraps of fabric that meant something to each of the givers. I will certainly treasure it as I hope she will love hers.

Next project: I'm knitting them an afgahn as their wedding gift. As well as designing their wedding invitations. Which I really need to get started on!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Raspberry Lemon Upside-down Cake

This weekend we had our family over for a belated St. Patrick's Day feast. Since we were having such a heavy meal, I wanted a light dessert. I found a wonderful recipe for a berry cake utilizing fresh berries and a boxed cake. Since I knew I wasn't going to have a lot of time I knew it was a great choice.


  • 1 package Cake mix any brand (I got a lemon cake mix, but really you could use whatever you like)
  • 3 cups Fresh raspberries (enough to cover the bottom of the pan)
  • 3/4 cup sugar (I used Splenda for Baking)
  • 1 package Raspberry jello 4 oz. size (I got the sugar-free package)
  • 2 1/2 cups Miniature marshmallows


1. Prepare batter for favorite 2 layer cake mix, set aside
2. Grease 13 x9" baking pan (I forgot to grease the pan. I just cut around the sides and then inverted it. Since the berries are on the bottom they don't stick so all you have to worry about is the sides.
3. Cover bottom of pan with raspberries
4. Sprinkle berries with sugar
5. Sprinkle berries with jello
6. Cover berries with marshmallows
7. Pour prepared cake batter over all
8. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes
9. Remove from oven and immediately invert onto serving tray.
10. ENJOY!

You could also use fresh strawberries, blackberries or any other fruit you want really. The raspberry and lemon combo was so good. Everyone was raving about the cake last night. I will definitely make this again.

I forgot to take a picture, and really it didn't look all that amazing since I forgot to grease the pan. I will have to make it again and take a picture of it.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Time for a change

Well since I'm a newly married 20 something looking for a job I decided I needed a fresh look when I go on all my job interviews (that is when i get them).

So I finally got what many call, "The Post Wedding Chop":)

I went from This**Please excuse the horrible bed head I don't wash my hair before I go to the salon so it was quite gross today. Not to mention that I've been sick this week so I wasn't caring about my appearance.

To This

I really love the new cut. It is drastically different from what I had or have had for a long time. I had no clue what I wanted going in to the cut other than I wanted different. I let my stylist use his creative mind to pick something appropriate for me, and it ended up well.

I now have a ziploc bag of hair that I will be mailing off to Locks-of-Love tomorrow. If you have never heard of this organization they take donated hair of at least 10" in length and use them to make hair pieces for children who have lost their hair to medical illnesses such as alopecia areata or cancer. This is the second time I have donated my hair and I am happy to do so. I have really thick hair so hopefully it will go a long way to helping a child feel more secure with themselves while struggling with their medical issues.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Pork Potstickers

Josh absolutely loves Potstickers. So I though I would make some for the party with his friends. These turned out INCREDIBLE!! They were a little labor intensive to make, however they were totally worth it. The other good thing about these is that you could make the whole batch of them cook just a few, freeze the rest, then pull out a couple at a time to cook when you have company pop over. You can find the original recipe here.


3 cups minced nappa cabbage (also called Chinese cabbage) leaves (about 1/2 medium head)
3/4 tsp table salt
3/4 lb ground pork
4 minced scallions (about 6 tablespoons)
2 egg whites, lightly beaten
4 tsp soy sauce
1 1/2 tsp minced or fresh grated ginger
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1 package wonton wrappers ( it was the only thing I could find, I really don't know how many it made, probably at least 40 or so?)
dish of water
2 Tbsp vegetable oil( I used olive oil)


1. For the filling: Toss cabbage with the salt in colander set over a bowl and let stand until cabbage begins to wilt, about 20 minutes. Press the cabbage gently with rubber spatula to squeeze out any excess moisture (I ended up having to grab it with my hands and squeeze out the liquid), then transfer to a medium bowl. Add the remaining filling ingredients and mix thoroughly to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until mixture is cold, at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.

2. For the dumplings: Place 1 rounded teaspoon of filling in the center of the wonton wrapper. Use the photos below and this website to help you know how to fold the wontons. I did find it very helpful to place water on the edge that you are trying to join. It helps the wonton wrapper stick to itself.

Place one teaspoon of filling in the center of the wrapper.

Fold in half once.

Fold in half the same direction again.

Fold the corners onto each other like shown in the website directions. It's really hard to explain, but they end up looking like "nurse's caps".

Transfer the dumplings to a baking sheet and repeat with the remaining wrappers and filling. The dumplings can be wrapped tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 1 day or frozen for up to one month. Once frozen, do not thaw before cooking, start directly with step 3.

3. Line a large plate with a double layer of paper towels; set aside. brush 1 tablespoon of the oil over the bottom of a 12inch non stick skillet and arrange half of the dumplings in the skillet, with a flat side down (overlapping slightly if necessary). place the skillet over medium-high heat and cook the dumplings, without moving, until golden brown on the bottom, about 5 minutes.

4. Reduce heat to low, add 1/2 cup of water and cover immediately. Continue to cook, covered until most of the water is absorbed and the wrappers are slightly translucent, about 6 minutes.

Uncover the skillet, increase the heat to medium-high, and continue to cook without stirring until the dumpling bottoms are well browned and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes more.

Slide the dumplings onto the paper towel-lined plate, browned slide facing down, and let drain briefly (if you let them sit too long they will start to stick together. Transfer the dumplings to a serving platter with scallion dipping sauce.

Let the skillet cook until just warm, then wipe it clean with a wad of DRY paper towels and repeat step 3 and 4.

Scallion Dipping Sauce:

Makes 3/4 cup

1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
2 Tbsp mirin
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp chili oil (optional)
1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 medium scallion, white and green parts, minced

Combine all ingredients in bowl and serve.

Orange Cranberry Barbecue Meatballs

These were something my mom used to make for our Holiday Open house at Christmastime. They are quite delicious. and very very easy to make.
Makes about 24 meatballs.

Meatball Ingredients:

1 lb. ground turkey
1 egg white
1 green onion with top sliced
2 tsp grated orange peel
1 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp ground red pepper (optional)

Sauce Ingredients
1 can (16 oz) jellied cranberry sauce
1/2 cup barbecue sauce


1. Combine cranberry sauce and barbecue sauce in slow cooker. Cover; cook on HIGH 20-30 minutes or until cranberry sauce is melted and mixture is hot.
2. Meanwhile, place egg white in medium bowl; beat lightly. Add turkey, green onion, orange peel, soy sauce, black pepper and ground red pepper, if desired; mix until well blended. Shape into 24 balls.
3. Spray large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Add meatballs to skillet; cook over medium hear 8 to 10 minutes or until meatballs are no longer pink in center, carefully turning occasionally to brown evenly. Add to heated sauce in slow cooker; stir gently to coat.
4. Reduce heat to Low. Cover; cook 3 hours. Transfer meatballs to serving plate.

It really is a simple thing to make and you really could make the meatballs ahead of time then just stick them in the crock pot a few hours before your guests arrive to heat everything together.

Cooking up a storm

So last weekend Josh and I went to Buffalo to celebrate his birthday with his friends and family. Friday night we had a get together with his friends and since his friends so graciously let us use their house I made sure I had plenty of food to feed everyone.

I made several different dishes.

-Bean and Corn Salsa
and of course
-Mint Oreo Cupcakes

I'll post these each in a different post so they are easily linkable from the side menu.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Chocolate Fluffernutter Cupcakes

I decided I would bake Josh some cupcakes for Valentine's day. He loves chocolate and Peanut Butter so I thought these would be really good.

I used a boxed cake chocolate cake recipe just because this was going to be an invention anyways, so I at least wanted the cake part to taste good. I used Devil's food cake which was really good, but next time I would try something that would be a little firmer. It was hard to hold these and bit them. They were really moist, they fell apart very easily

I then used a disposable piping bag with a large round tip to pipe marshmallow fluff into the cupcakes. THis was rather messy and didn't result in a lot of fluff inside the cupcake. Next time I will use the idea I found afterward from Baking Bites and cut out a cone shaped section and then pipe the fluff that way.

I then made some peanut butter buttercream frosting from a recipe I found on the Wilton website.


  • 1/3 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 cups (approx. 1 lb.) confectioners' sugar, sifted

Makes: About 3 cups.


Cream shortening and butter with electric mixer. Add peanut butter, milk and vanilla. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry. Add milk and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

Keep icing covered with a damp cloth until ready to use. For best results, keep icing bowl in refrigerator when not in use. Refrigerated in an airtight container, this icing can be stored 2 weeks. Re-whip before using.

The frosting tasted great. However, it was rather liquidy. It really needed more confectioners sugar. If I make this frosting recipe again I would wait to add the milk until after the confectioners sugar. Also I should have let the frosting cool in the fridge and set it would have piped much better and have been more firm.

The finished cupcake. I did add some cookie crumbles to the top which tasted really nice.

A cross section of the cupcakes. Unfortunately when I went to cut this one, it toppled over before I could cut it so the icing was all messed up. But you can still see the piped mashmallow fluff in the center.

Over all these were really delicious. Josh has eated 5 today. I would modify these with the few things above, but they were still delicious!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wedding Items for Sale

For sale from my October 2008 Wedding

Shippable Items

Unused items from bathroom baskets-$10

2 Fall Themed Rectangular Baskets - $5ea or both for $8.50

2 small green gourds- $5 for both

1 painted 6" terracotta pot-$5

4 4" galvanized pails-$2ea or all for $6

Amber colored Pillar Candle Holder (used for memorial Candle) -$5

Olive Green tea light holders -$5 for both

Various spools of fall colored ribbons, some new, some partly used
#1 (orange/green double sided)-$2

#2 (4 spools of NEW brown organdy ribbon)-$3 for all
#3-(orange shimmer ribbon) - $2
#4(Gold Sheer ribbon)-$1
#5(Navy and Yellow skinny ribbon, only used about 1ft of each)-$2 for both
#6 (orange sheer and opaque ribbon NEW)-$4
#7(3 spools Fall printed ribbon) -$2

Spool of 2mm "pearls"-$4

Satin Cording (approx 1yrd)-$1

Ivory and white heart Garter (NEW)-$1

5mm flat sequins (approx 1000)-$4

Burgundy Organza favor bags 3x4 (approx 30)-$3

1 Leaf pomander/kissing ball-$4

Large Grapevine Pumpkins-$10 for both

Funkin filled will fall florals - $7
Foam-core covered with batting and Brown Leaf embossed fabric-$5 for both SOLD

*If you are interested in any of the items, please email me at
*The buyer will pay shipping for all items through USPS Flat rate boxes as long as the item fits into one of those boxes. If you would like insurance on the item you are purchasing please let me know when you email me.
*Some of the items are very delicate, I will do my best to package them so they won't break, but of course sometimes things happen.
* I will accept pay pal payments for the items and shipping costs, unless the item is being picked up, I will then accept cash payment.