Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cherry Almond Muffins

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

So a couple weeks ago I need a girls BAD.  So I went to see my friend Maryann (The Cookie Artisan) because she only lives like 3 hours away from me....and the drive to her house is like 75MPH the whole way so....sweet-borrowing-my-hubs-fast-car-action.  Anyway, while we were there she, being a perfect hostess of course (would you expect less?), made us blueberry muffins for breakfast.  Ok, so I usually hate blueberry muffins...the blueberries are always gritty and I dunno...but I was hungry.  So I ate one....then two....then stuck a couple into my suitcase...

Basically I was a blueberry muffin converter....

After I got home however and ran through my stash I needed more muffins....and I needed them BAD.  They were just so soft and moist and fluffy...and juicy...and sweet and perfect...and comforting....

Yes I AM talking about muffins still....

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Shabby Chic Owls

Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Sometime in April my mom decided to host a baby shower for one of our long time family friend's daughter.  Her daughter grew up with my sister Amy.  So of course our families became friends.  Well, she was decorating the nursery with owls, so mom asked me if I would make owls for the shower....she asked me back in early March.  It's as if she knew I wouldn't get to them once baby John she knows me or something...moms...weird right??

Well yeah, I didn't get to them.  Totally coincidental...had nothing to do with the baby mother isn't always right....

But I had already cut and baked the cookies.

Since I don't sell my cookies, no one eats them.  So I kept the owls in a ziplock in a freezer till about.... well... 2 days ago... when I decided I would finally get these owls done.  They had been haunting me...begging to be decorated.

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Most Innocent Mud Wrestling Ever

Friday, August 23, 2013
It's Friday...which means it's my "I'll write about whatever the heck I feel like, it's my blog" day.

Nice huh?

Anyway...last Sunday was a beautiful day here in Joplin.  For once it wasn't raining...I mean what's up with that?  Last summer we had the worst drought ever...all my flowers I JUST PLANTED died.  And this year it's like tsunami season.  Anyway...

It was a beautiful day.  I'm in the kitchen baking, Dave is playing with the kids.  It's a pretty nice Sunday.  Well little Sophie runs and gets her swimsuit because she wants to play in her little inflatable kiddie pool in the backyard.  So Dave fills it up but it isny holding water.  In fact it just seems to be flooding out yard.

This, however, does not seem to present a problem for our happy inventive daughter...

She would find a way to play in the water no matter the state of the kiddie pool....

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Brown Sugar Peach Tart

Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Did you know it's peach season??

Well it is.  At least that's what my handy desk backdrop tells me and it would never lie to me.

I think.

(BTW: You should totally check out the desk top calendar by Going Home to's spiffy to the max.  She does one every month for your computer and your iPhone.  New Love.) weakness for peaches is deep my deep southern heritage.  My grandpa used to go help harvest the peach crops in Georgia during the season.  We always had TONS of peaches around.  I have fond childhood memories of making peach ice cream on the patio...You know, with the old ice cream makers where you needed rock salt.  We would have peach tea, peach cobbler, peach jam.....

Anyway...I love peaches...and I've always had a soft spot for anything baked with peach pie.  Or how about fancify it??  A peach tart!

And not just any peach tart....this is one sinfully-delicious-mouthwatering-sweet-and-savory-peach-explosion!

Yes I said it....explosion.  This is going to EXPLODE PEACHES.  

I don't shy away from the dangers of the I went for it..and my alchemy proved to be SO successful I have to share it with you...

Monday, August 19, 2013

Tutorial: Cutting Roses

Monday, August 19, 2013
We all know there's been a lot going on lately.  Busy busy....  SO I thought to ease back into it all I would share a simple tutorial with you guys.

I know you've all seen me do these roses before....

Ok not THESE roses....but roses similar to them.  Same shape that is.  Of course I have decorated them a million and one ways.  In fact this rose is my very first franken-shape.  I didn't have a rose cutter that looked like I wanted.  I wasn't thrilled with the cutters out there at the time either.  Keep in mind this was like 4 years ago.  Yep...I've been making these roses since the beginning....

Made these to send to my friend Kim while she was away at school

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Weekend Update

Saturday, August 17, 2013
So I know I don't usually do this, but I've decided to give y'all an update on how things are going over on this end.

Right now I would say pretty good.  Finally

It's still a little rough with a new baby....busy.  My mom was here for my birthday this weekend (did I forget to tell you I celebrated my 31st birthday on Wednesday?) and she said, "I don't know how you get anything done."  And my response was, "I don't." And it's true.  These kids have me busy busy,  BUT come September Sophie will be at Pre-School full time and I'll have much more time to get to bloggable things.  I have managed to bake some things and pre-write a few baking posts...some pretty dang good ones judging from the responses of my guinea pigs.  "My guinea pigs?" you ask in horror?  That's my family.  My immediate family and my in laws...and out laws.  I make them sample things.  It's hardly cruelty...they don't seem to mind.

I held a dessert party Tuesday....because I wanted to.  I had the need to bake.  I had Mom and Grandma here to entertain kids.  I was in a party mood.  So I did.  It was pretty awesome....hence some new recipes coming on the blog very soon.

With the kid situation tho, the one thing I just haven't had a lot of time for is cookies.  Which is a bummer because it's the thing I like best...and kind of the mainstay of my blog.  It just takes SO LONG to do a set ( A lot of you are know what I'm talking about).  So it literally takes me WEEKS to get a set of cookie together...and that requires some major effort.  So here's crossing fingers that come September I will be able to get back in the cookie groove and I will have much more cookies posted.

In the mean time, I haven't been feeling too well.  I have this terrible chest pain.  I've had it for like 2 months now.  Not long after we got back from the Dominican, I started having vertigo and headaches and nausea and panic I went to quick meds...because it was freaking me out.  I NEVER get sick.  They said inner sense...then went to an Ear Nose and Throat guy...not inner ear.  I went to the cardiologist right away and he told me he didn't know what was causing my chest pain and other symptoms but it wasn't my heart (thank God).  So I figured maybe anxiety...I mean it's been pretty stressful since March. But as time has progressed and the other symptoms (like the vertigo) dissipated, the chest pain started getting worse.  And then I just started feeling sick.  So this last week I went to my general practitioner and she ran some tests on my gall bladder.  Turns out its hyperactive.  Awesome.  Hypo active Thyroid and a Hyper active Gallbladder.  Go figure.  When I get sick I get it bad.  So I have to go in Monday with a gastroenterologist and have a few more tests done....but either way I'm looking at surgery in the near future.  Convenient.

Anyway....with that in mind..I've decided to give up wine (it's not as hard as I thought it would be) and other alcohol.  We're an alcohol free house.  Which I'm good with.  Don't want my kids growing up thinking that regular drinking is a healthy habit.  Not that I judge those who do keep alcohol in the house...we just gave it up for our health over here.  But I still want that special treat in the evening...that small sip of something.. I mean the habit is still there...rewarding myself for a surviving a long day of laundry and screaming kids...So I've taken up tea.

In fact I think I might be full on obsessed with tea.  It's like wine in so many ways.  Different flavors, different regions, different harvest years...yes.  Tea has become my new vice.  And I'm ok with that.  Most times it keeps me off the sweets and there are health benefits.  I still stay away from drinking a lot of caffeine.  I have never been a big coffee drinker.  I stay away from caffeine and sodas.  I'm serious.  I drink water and tea.  That's it.  An occasional glass of milk when I want an "indulgence of creaminess" without digging in to the salted caramels that I got from Firefly Confections...awe man.... good stuff.  I will admit, I still do take one piece out ever now and then in the evening when nothing but a little sugar will do the trick.  But those caramels are DANGEROUS in the best way possible.  I highly recommend.  She does caramel right.

photo courtesy of Firefly Confections - do not Pin is sleeping, Dave is with Sophie at the park.  It's FINALLY quiet here at home (tho just temporarily of course).  So I'm going to order some tea.  And makeup.  Because those are my two vices...and I got some cash for my birthday.  Perhaps on another random weekend I'll let you know about the tea or makeup.  Or any of my other fave finds from the week.  

Till next week.

If you want to read any of my tea reviews come visit me on Steepster


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