Saturday, July 31, 2010

Oh Boy!

After so many baby girls being born, (mine included ;)
I was so excited to finally be able to do a project for a little boy,
one little boy inparticular... Brayden!

One of my good friends had her little boy on July 25th
and I couldn't wait to give her these...

I found a great tutorial at Crap I've Made
and you can find the cutout for the tie applique here!
When I saw these I knew I had to pick my colors accordingly,
Mom is an A's fan and Dad is a Seahawks fan!
So I did my best to give him a tie for each :)
Congratulations Rick & Elena!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Baking: Red Velvet Cupcakes

I have been very interested in making these for a while,
since they seem to be quite popular.
They seemed intimidating to make at first,
 but how hard could it really be?...

2 1/2 cups cake flour (not self- rising), sifted
2 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon red gel-paste food color (or approx. 50 drops of liquid)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Whisk together cake flour, cocoa, and salt.

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, whisk together sugar and oil until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Mix in food color and vanilla.

Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and whisking well after each. Stir together the baking soda and vinegar* in a small bowl (it will foam); add mixture to the batter, and mix on medium speed 10 seconds.
*Use apple cider vinegar to be sweeter fluffier!

Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

To finish, use a small offset spatula to spread cupcakes with frosting. Refrigerate up to 3 days in airtight containers; bring to room temperature before serving.

...So it was easier than I thought
and I was very happy with the way they turned out!
A nice little birthday present for myself ;}
Happy Birthday to me,

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Fabulous Find: Skinny Girl Margarita

We were in Costco this weekend and to my surprise I spotted this...

{pic via Google images}
This will be my drink for the summer!

If you love margaritas,
 you have got to try this,
it's only 100 CALORIES!

If you are super fan of the "Real Housewives" series
(Like me ;)
You may have heard Bethenny talk about it on the
New York show!

Since I just had a baby 2 months ago
and haven't had a chance to try it,
this weekend we had a birthday party for me :)
and I couldn't wait to try it!

It is a little on the strong side for a margarita
{but I could be a light weight}
it is just 100% Agave Tequila and sweetened with Agave nectar,
{so make sure to put your big girl panties on for this one!}

I also found the recipe to try making it myself,

2 oz clear tequila per person
juice of 4 lime wedges
splash or triple sec, grand marnier OR cointreau
serve over ice or blend with ice

Check out her SKINNY GIRL website for more info and recipes
I am planning to try the Mock-a-Mole tomorrow!


Monday, July 12, 2010

Baking: Strawberry & Cream Cupcakes


1 box White cake mix

1 1/4 c. Strawberry-flavored soda pop (secret ingredient!)

Vegetable oil and egg whites called for on cake mix box  

1 container Cream Cheese frosting (or make your own)

1/2 c. Candy sprinkles (I used pink)

Paper baking cups

Fresh strawberries, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pans).
Place paper baking cup in each of 24 regular-size muffin cups.
Make and bake cake mix as directed on box for 24 cupcakes,
substituting soda pop for the water and using oil and egg whites.
Cool in pan 10 minutes; remove from pan to cooling rack.
Cool completely, about 30 minutes

Nice and PINK!

Frost cupcakes
(You can add 1 or 2 drops of red food coloring to the frosting
if you wish, I liked the white contrast)

Garnish with fresh strawberries.

These are so quick to make and delicious to eat!
Super soft and moist, with just a hint on strawberry ;)
BigSis LilSis

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Baking: Banana Bread

I love the smell of baking in the morning,
especially something as delicious as

The whole house begins to fill with the sweet aroma
and you can't wait to have a taste :}

We go through A LOT of bananas at our house,
but every once in a while they get a little more ripe then we like,
so the next step is to make some banana bread!

I use a recipe that my Step-mom gave me
and a few touches of my own ;}


1/2 c. softened butter (not melted)
1 c. sugar
3 very ripe bananas
2 eggs well beaten
1 1/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. plain oats or oatmeal
1/2 c. nuts (I use chopped walnuts)
1/2 c. chocolate chips (my special ingredient)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix butter, sugar, eggs & bananas with a hand mixer until soft (will be a little lumpy because of the bananas).

In a seperate bowl, sift flour, salt, and baking soda. Add oatmeal to dry ingredients. Mix into wet ingredients a little at a time until completely mixed. Add nuts and chocolate chips.

Pour into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 50-55 min.

Delicious! Can also be doubled :)

BigSis LilSis

Monday, July 5, 2010

Happy 4th of July

Today was one of the best days yet :}

We spent most of the day outside, relaxing in the sun
and playing in the water {mini pool}

This morning I had a small candy sprinkle crisis for the smores,
but everything turned out okay ;}
{Really I just waited until the last minute to get what I need to make these}
Just an idea I saw and had to make,
smores on a stick:
1. Put marshmallow on a stick
2. Cover in melted chocolate {Hershey's bar of course}
3. Dip top in colored sprinkles... or not
4. Roll the sided in crushed graham crackers
5. Stick the whole think in your mouth and chew!

And we had enough chocolate left over to make these :}}
Chocolate Covered Preztels
{Gotta give credit to the hubby for this one!}

And in the meantime I decided to whip up one of these cuties :}
{My new favorite style bow!}

And to top it all off we had to have a couple of these ;}
His & Hers

We missed out on the block party in our neighborhood this year,
but I think we had a great day with just the 4 of us!

Happy Birthday America,
BigSis LilSis

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Happy 2nd Birthday Cadence!!

If I knew then what i know now...
  I would have wanted you in my life sooner!

And while it takes courage to achieve greatness, it takes more courage to find fulfillment in being ordinary. For the joys that last have little relationship to achievement, to standing one step higher on the victory platform. What is the adventure in being ordinary? It is daring to love just for the pleasure of giving it away. It is venturing to give new life and to nurture it to maturity. It is working hard for the pure joy of being tired at the end of the day. It is caring and sharing and giving and loving…
~Marilyn Thomsen

Two years ago today, my life changed forever!
I became your Mommy and you became my daughter,
a relationship unlike any other!
You are the most amazing little girl
and I love watching you grow everyday,
Although, this is bittersweet
because you will always be my baby,
you must grow up!

At times you can be challenging,
but that is you just showing us you are Miss Independent!
You are quite the comedian
and your vocabulary impresses me by the day,
you are sensitive and sweet and loving.
And because of all that,
you are the MOST wonderful BIG SISTER!
Aria is so lucky to have you to look up to
and I know you are going to be her best friend!
{and even though you love to tease Lucy, she loves you too!}
You are definitely Daddy's little girl
and Mommy's cuddle bug :)
We are so looking forward to this next year!!

Mommy, Daddy & Aria


Friday, July 2, 2010

Let's be friends

Check THIS out over at
The Girl Creative and Trendy Treehouse!

A great place to find new and interesting blogs
and maybe make a few friends along the way ;}

Leave me a comment if you are visiting
and I will be sure to visit you!

Your friend,

Related Posts with Thumbnails