Thursday, May 26, 2011

DIY Twix bars

A recent discovery of pinterest has officially taken all of my blogging time away from me..instead of spending evenings posting about the haps around here, I have been "pinning" away like a mad woman, creating my own collection over there..If you don't already know about pinterest, you should really, really, really, check it out..but beware, it is more of a time zapper than facebook...but good Lord does it have some cool ideas and inspiration to learn from.

Among them, is the recipe for homemade twix bars, courtesy of this link from King Arthur Flour. I hit up Fresh & Easy, bought myself some Werther's chewy caramels, some nestle milk chocolate chips and got to baking!

The recipe was super straight forward, and although the recipe calls for these to be served more as a cookie bar would be, you can tweak the cutting process to create "sticks" and then dip them in chocolate to create twix bars, rather than pouring the chocolate over the top of the cookie bars only.

Mine won't be winning Miss America anytime soon (they were a bit homely, actually), but the text I received from my husband the day he took them into work said,

" They didn't stand a chance. Smoked within the first hour today".

That's how I measure my recipe success...if he brings back stragglers, I know the recipe tanked..If I get a text by 9 a.m. stating that they're gone... I know it's definitely something to make again.

I'm happy to proclaim that the Twix bars earned a home in my recipe book!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Saturday Project: for the boys

My Saturday project is complete!
Thanks to the help of NZ, his drill press, and sander...
3/4" holes all drilled out, 6 " from the end
3/4" dowel measuring 48" long inserted through all 4 uprights (also measuring 48"L each)

Full size sheet, folded in half with elastic loops sewn to each corner....

A perfect hide-away for our nephews.. Indoors or outdoors...
And easy enough to store! All pieces fit in a storage bag I made (by re-purposing the full size fitted sheet that came with t
his sheet set), measuring 50" long, and 6" wide with a drawstring top.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Must make: A frame tent

[photo from Cakies]

One of my college besties sent me a link saying that this project over on Cakies looked like something I would be into making for my super awesome nephews to play in...and boy was she ever right! I have been dreaming of making an A-frame tent similar to this ever since that link showed up in my inbox on Wednesday.

Although it will require me to manage a power drill ( I have a better idea, I'll enlist NZ's help on this one..C'mon it'd be fun to do a project together, right?) and make a trip to Home Depot (What's that she said? "Home Depot?" He's sold...definitely helping me now), I think it will be relatively easy to make. The instructions state that a twin size sheet will work well for the cover, and wouldn't ya know, I don't own a single twin sheet, and to buy the yardage of fabric at Joann's
would be spendy..I'm all for CHEAP projects, not "costs-more-to-make-it-yourself-than-to-buy-it" projects..

I found myself at Marshall's and Ross this week, and perused their housewares sections. Sheets were only sold as sets at Marshall's, and still about $30 for any that I liked for a little boy's tent..Went to Ross expecting to find nothing, and something caught my eye as I was about to leave. I spied little blue, orange and green mod guitars on a white backdrop. But oh man....just my luck, it's a sheet it's more than I want to spend...


Serious? I looked again...

Yep, $8.99, said so on the tag.

To the checkout, we, my sheet set and I.

So, now I am armed with the "cute" part of the project and am anxiously awaiting this weekend to schlep my ol man into Home Depot to help me buy & cut the right lengths of baseboards and dowel rods necessary to make this thing a reality. I think tent building makes a wonderful Friday night activity, don't you? Okay, okay, I'll hold my horses till Saturday, but I am so dang excited about my next project!

And oh yeah--double bonus is that it's a double sheet set, so I have 2 pillowcases and a fitted sheet's worth of extra fabric to play with once the tent is constructed!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Who you'd be today

Dear Denise,

Wow, 2 years...730 days..17,520 hours since your dad and I met you and said our goodbyes. And guess what? I still think of you every stinkin' day. I see a toddler playing in the fountain at the local outdoor mall, and think to myself, I'd like to be one of those momthers taking my kid there on a hot spring day...The shrieks and giggles of the little girl that lives behind us when she's out back playing with her brothers makes me wonder what you would have sounded like..Would you be a quiet,like me, or gregarious like your dad?

As two years have now passed, I am filled with even more wonder, as to who you would have been. What would you have been like? Would you test my limits by being as stubborn of a child as I was, or would you be laid back and just roll with it?

I want you to know, You are not forgotten.... you were wanted, and very much loved. Every time I hear this Kenny Chesney Song I think of you...

I don't have much else to say on what would be your second birthday, other than to let you know that not a day goes by that I don't wish we would have gotten to keep you here on Earth. Be good up there, and give your little friend Esmay a hug from her mama, who I'm sure misses her as much as I miss you.



Sunday, May 15, 2011

Rug Love

Here's my current obsession...

brace yourself....




Yes, I am obsessed with a rug. Love it. Want it [but don't need it]..
You see, I have a problem with fantasy internet shopping and bookmarking all the must haves for when we re-do room X, Y and Z. This rug is on the top of my current must have for my living room or dining room, someday...

And if it's sold out, and we happen to have a nursery for a girl, someday, I am lovin' on this color combo matched with gray walls. I can soooooo just picture it, fresh and modern, yet still girlie.
And oh yeah..wouldn't ya know...It would be a fan-freakin-tastic match for the sofabed I blogged about in my previous dream craftroom/nursery.. Totally premeditated.

Happy Birthday Tyler & Emma

Through the beauty of facebook, I reconnected with yet another SBHS alum, who I remember being quite the ballerina, back in the day. She and her husband had twins, a boy and a girl last June, and was I ever excited to find use for the two baby Bjorns we had sitting in our garage, being unused..I shipped them her way and she wrote a cute note to say they were getting mileage.
Since then, we've kept in touch, and she recently let me in on the 4-1-1- for the babies' first birthday, asking me to make a couple of banners.

Here's a sneak peak ...
P.S. My silhouette fancied these up with white circles on his, and white scallops on hers...I think that adding these to the banners made the lettering "pop" more, which has been something I have been struggling with when I use patterned paper to make my banners..Problem, solved. Yay for new discoveries!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Composition "What I did on vacation..."

Does anyone remember writing the grade school compositions that started with "What I did on summer/sprint/winter break..." in their little black and white composition books? Mine always had illustrations to go with my stories ( and yes, I sometimes wrote "stories" aka. in 1st grade when I wrote that, while on summer vacation, my mom got us a baby brother and we bought a dolphin and it lived in our pool). Well, mom did not birth another child, nor did we even have a pool to put the absurd "pet dolphin" in. I bet I gave my teachers some laughs though.

Anyways, here's a non-fabricated illustration of what NZ and I did on our "four-and-a-half-years-later-honeymoon", which was well worth the wait. We had been throwing around destinations for the past few years, but with bodybuilding competitions, work travel and pregnancy attempts, we never had the opportunity to book a vacation until now...and I wouldn't have it any other way. This vacation to Costa Rica was worth the wait--for once in our hectic lives, we were able to get up in the morning and not be rushed to do a darn thing.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Got plans?


A while back, my sister , Stephanie of Sweet Creations, made some boob cupcakes for a dirty ol' man's birthday. One of our friends was turning 26 this year, and requested boob cupcakes for her party, so I obliged and made some PG13 boob cupcakes with royal icing and color flow ( I ran out of meringue powder to do the tops/bras out of royal).

Although a little sloppy ( the colorflow dries and clumps very quickly, whereas my royal icing has a more continuous look to it when piped in)..they worked.

I printed out 24 circles measuring 2" diameter from the computer, then place
d them under freezer paper to use as templates. I used slightly thinned (think hair gel consistency) royal icing tinted with Wilton gel coloring in copper to make my rounds by squeezing till the edge of the royal icing met the edges of my template which was underneath the paper. To make the mounds for the boobs, I used slightly thicker royal icing and a smaller sized template. As the mounds were drying, I wet my finger and pushed any po
inted areas down.

I let both the base and the mounds dry overnight, and then "glued" them together, two mounds to a base, the next evening. This created the "body".

I can't take credit for the bras & bikini tops, as I found them here on Las Vegas based, Gimme Some Sugar's blog. So stink'n awesome! They used white chocolate for their creations, but I am worse with chocolate than royal icing, so I chose the latter. Unfortunately, I ran out of meringue powder and was too lazy to drive across town to purchase another canister, so I used my Color Flow instead. I whipped up a large batch, separated it into 3 separate bowls and tinted each. I piped the outlines of the bras and bikinis onto the mounds to look the part. I then thinned down each color by adding water and tried to fill and decorate each top, which is where the messiness came to play. Color flow dries so darn quick and I don't think I had mine thinned quite enough, but it worked well enough.

Had I not been so pressed for time, I would
have started over and used the correct medium to make these, but returning from vacation on Tuesday followed by a party on Saturday, left no time for do-overs.

[ the birthday girl]

Happy 26th Ness!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Teaser: Costa Rica

More about our trip to Costa Rica when I have a chance to catch my breath..We got back to California and hit the floor running, with an immediate visit from one of my college besties, so I haven't had a chance to blog about our trip yet..but I promise there's much more to come!

Until then...a few pictures from our vacay.
{NZ's board bag..making it safely to our destination despite being bungie tied to the roof rack}

{His boards obviously made it in one piece, cause check it out..gettin barrelled}

{We did a WHOLE lotta the above}