Monday, December 20, 2010

Baking Cookies...

The house smells so yummy today. I'm making my super tasty Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies. They are the best, the hint of lemon in them makes them stand out. I love rolling the dough and using my favorite cookie cutters (old and new - I have a HUGE collection and can't stop buying them). Here's a pic of my cookies as I start the process. The dough makes tons of cookies so it is a lot of hours on my feet, but so worth it.

And last night I made my Mincemeat cookies. This cookie is everyone's favorite in my family. The slightly spicy mincemeat and apple coupled with quite possibly the world's best cookie dough makes for a big treat. These require two different cookie cutters per cookie as a smaller one is cut out for the top to vent.

I used my brand new snowflake cookie cutters and I'm rather happy with them. They are even cuter in the sugar cookies. I also made my meringue snowflake cookies a few days ago, but they got gobbled up and given away before I could take a single picture! I'm making more tonight. ;)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

An Austen Christmas

I made these ornaments last year - I don't think anyone is unaware by now I love silhouettes. I saw a tree full of them in a magazine a few years ago and wanted one of my own. This is my little white tree, which I think shows them off much better than my green tree did last year.

I can't tell if I like it better lit up or not - both ways I guess. I love the soft glow of the lights, more romantic, but it still looks good in the daylight, too. Another thing I love about white trees.

Here are a few close ups of the silhouettes:

I made them on different shapes, backgrounds, colors, etc. to give them a varied feel like they've been collected. I love the different backgrounds of music and handwriting and even French text from an old French book I have. Each one of these is unique. I also stenciled them different on each side, a man on one side and a woman on the other mostly.

Some of the silhouettes are children - so cute.

And this one is my favorite - I made sure the page had the title of 'Paris' and then stenciled her in dark brown with a little stamp in the corner.

The white ribbon is so pretty! And the back has a similar page from the book, a big stamp of the Eiffel Tower and a postage stamp and mail stamp on it so it looks sort of postcard-like and I imagine an Austen lady that visited Paris one summer and sent back a silhouette to her special someone back home.
I'm putting all of these silhouettes up on Etsy (which made my mother complain as she likes them) and a few are already up now and I'll be adding them tonight and tomorrow. Hope a few of these make it to some loving homes...
Sorry I haven't been posting lately, btw. Got a bit wrapped up in Thanksgiving and then I was sick so I'm just pulling myself together again. ;)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Beware - a new and terrible species found!

Much like the vicious Rabbit of Caerbannog* - I, too, have encountered a rare and vicious killer rodent! Beware the wee beady eyes...the vicious, horrible giant teeth!

Each summer it strips the peach tree of all fruit and discards the pits around the surrounding land. It cackles quietly to itself as it watches the resulting horror and terror in the eyes of the humans who discover the terrible deed.

And behold! The terrible destruction and desecration of our beautiful pumpkin sitting on the front porch!!!

Who is it? Who is this terrible beast that terrorizes my neighborhood and forces me to cage all vegetables I plant in a secure fortress of chicken wire and steel each summer? Who haunts my dreams and plagues me every year with his voracious appetite?!

Here! Here he is - cover your children's eyes and shield their innocence!

Behold the evil Killer Squirrel of St. Louis!!

Now wait! Wait! I know what you're thinking! He's not so innocent and sweet as he seems, calmly eating an acorn on my neighbor's driveway. He's a cunning devil - if you look carefully you can see his beady eyes watching me carefully, analyzing my weaknesses, judging the distance between himself and the pumpkin I struggle to protect from him. Ohhhh, he's a dangerous one, he is...

Okay here's the story - I moved from the county to the city a few years ago and was absolutely astonished at how much destruction the squirrels caused. I cannot plant ANYTHING without them doing their best to eat it. I planted tomatoes, zucchini, etc. at my old house - no problem. Here? I had to install a large protected cage for my tomatoes - wired completely with chicken wire over EVERY potential crack and still they climb all over it and reach in and pull the fruit to them. My peach tree? One day covered in peaches, the next - not ONE peach left - all ruined. We put a huge net over it - still they climb over it and then chew through the thick net to get in and run around gleefully eating the fruit up. I cannot tell you how much I now hate squirrels. Which is such a shame because I also love them. Squirrel Nutkin was my favorite story as a child and I was always horrified that he lost his tail.
I just can't believe these are the same squirrels we had in the county...they weren't anywhere near as bad. A few bites in a few tomatoes now and then, sure, but the level of destruction is just amazing now. And no even my pumpkin isn't safe? Man...
Off I go to pout. That was my ONLY pumpkin. *sniffle*
*Killer Rabbit from Monty Python and the Search for the Holy Grail. Funniest movie EVER.

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Lovely Fall Wedding...

Last week I went to a beautiful Fall wedding at The Conservatory in historic St. Charles. It was really cold that day, but still lovely.

It was a day wedding, crisp and bright - the inside of the building was full of ivy. After the ceremony the guests piled outside on the cobblestone street to wait for the bride and groom to exit. We blew bubbles on them as they kissed and exited - so sweet.

Afterwards there was some time to kill before the reception so I wandered around the back to see the gardens. The beautiful brick pathways were magical looking...

Even though it was the end of October the view was still beautiful to see...

I highly recommend you click on the link at the top of the post to see more enchanting pictures of other weddings and far better pictures of the gardens there. It's a great place for a small wedding.

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Bootiful Party...

Since it is still two weeks away this is a very small scale of my coming Halloween party, but I did make a few treats for all to enjoy, I hope...

First off - you absolutely HAVE to wear a costume to my party - sorry, it is the's my gown:

I love this gown, so flattering and with a crinkly black heavy petticoat underneath! Bloody Mary and her father, King Henry VIII look on. Jealous, no doubt. ;)

It looks even better on - the skirt is much fuller. I added a mask for a hint of mystery...

Hungry? Have a deviled egg - or are they eyeballs? I can't tell...

And if you are thirsty, be sure to try the dragon's blood punch. Yum...

Would you like an eyeball to go with that??

And lest you think the fare is not healthy, have a veggie stick, too. See, I do have normal food.

And I know this is a dreadfully small post, but then I have been rather busy the last few weeks, not to mention sick. I have also posted several Halloween related posts lately so feel free to skim down and see - or click on the subject link of Halloween to see past Halloween posts and parties.

Also - while I do not have a giveaway this time, I AM coming up on my 200th post - just five more posts and I will do a giveaway then - hooray! So be sure to stop on back and visit around Halloween to see my RL party and also to check in for a chance to win something.

For extra chances to win you can -

1: Comment here or at any other one of my previous posts

2: Add yourself to my followers on the right (If you are already a friend of this blog you will also get the extra chance).

Then be sure to comment on the 200th post. You get can get three chances to win this way.

Now on to the other parties!! Point me to yours if you'd like me to make sure and visit. Happy Halloween!!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sharing a bit of Fall...

Aaaah, Fall -you are so beautiful. I love searching for the perfect pumpkin...

Even if it ends up being a little mini pumpkin like this one - I love the shape and color, so cute! I added a tiny silver bud vase full of twigs from my redbud tree - very fall looking and I was going to polish the silver vase and then thought it looked extra October-y and Halloween looking tarnished as it is - and don't you love the feet on that vase?

And you can't stop at one tiny pumpkin or gourd - you must buy several in different styles. I piled mine up in my white pedestal bowl.

And of course Fall comes with cold weather - so my kitties find nice warm spots to snuggle up in and purr...

Speaking of cats - I just love this poster we've had for decades - it's an American Lung Association poster.
I love the three cats and the We don't Want You to Smoke at the bottom is just a bonus.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Halloween Shopping and a Party, too.

Yes, the Halloween craze continues...
Good news for Halloween nuts like me - Target is back just about as great as ever for the holiday. They expanded their section - as big as their Christmas display - about time! I drooled over all the new stuff and just couldn't help buying a few new things to add to my collection. (I'm bad...)
First up - a fantastic tablecloth!!
From here.

Here's a close up detail of mine:

They don't have any available online, but they had them in the store, but very few so if you want one I'd grab it fast! They had other cute tablecloths, but I just love the cool fonts here - it looks even better in person. My only complaint is it doesn't come for a round table, only oblong, oh well.

Also too cute to miss - these salad 'tongs':

Guess I'm making a salad now for Halloween because these are too funny not to use.

And not to be missed - Miss Vanessa's Halloween Party!

I'll be having a little party here, too, of course. :)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Witchy Woman...

I am such a kid when it comes to Halloween. Seeing things up on Etsy and in the stores for Halloween gives me such a thrill!!

I can't wait any longer to show you the latest item I bought for my favorite holiday.

I found these two great old books to add to my witchy decor...

Beautiful aren't they? But no, they were not the greatest antique/vintage score every - they are book boxes from Garden Ridge of all places!
So now I can safely store a few of my Halloween items after the holidays. They are some of the nicest book boxes I've seen - very nice covers that feel pretty real and the smaller book is rather textured and both of these feel like a real book in your hands. I'm over the moon about them. ;)
The other items displayed are: a great dark red bottle I've had for many years - looks like something the Wicked Witch Stepmother from Snow White had. I also have a blue one, my small crystal ball on a stand (I have a big one elsewhere - this one I keep on my bookshelf year round), and finally a fantastic dark red scarf with moons and stars I purchased in Salem, Mass.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Colorful Quilt Throw

I'm just popping in to show off the quilt my 89 year old Yiayia gave me this last weekend. She worked so hard on it and it's so cheerful and colorful.

Louie approves as you can see. ;)

Louie: Pretty quilt, I can't wait to shed all over it...

I especially like the colorful embroidery floss stitching the squares together - so pretty. The batik fabrics are my favorite. I just love the color scheme - it seems so fitting for the summer. I'll be packing it away soon to enjoy next year.

I'm not big on quilting myself. I like quilts, but the actual process of making them doesn't interest me much. I usually prefer far more subdued quilts of two colors - like red and white or blue and white and usually stear clear of patterned material, but in this case it really works. I love it. ;)

I don't know about you, but I think it's pretty impressive for 89 years old and bad arthritis to stitch it all together by hand. I told her I'd post pictures of this up on the computer and she was quite impressed and proud. Thank you, Yiayia - you're an inspiration! :)
Hoping you all have a bit of color and cheer in your day, too...

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Fall Cheesecake

Now that it is September and the weather is cooling down it is inevitable that we turn to Fall for inspiration.

Today we celebrated my grandpa's birthday so my grandmother decorate a small cheesecake for him with strawberry topping, fresh strawberries and a chocolate bow as well as a sprinkling of chocolate fall leaves she made herself.
She told me she made the chocolate modeling clay herself with melted chocolate chips and corn starch - the yellow and rust colored leaves were from white chocolate.

Happy Labor Day Weekend and so long summer - I'll miss you...

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Nearly time...

Labor Day Weekend is coming up and I'm all excited to go to my favorite festivals this year since last year I was in too much pain to enjoy them.

Top of the list festival of the weekend -
The St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church Greek Festival!!My family never misses out on this one - the best food EVER. It's pretty much acknowledged to be a top event to visit in St. Louis. They are always packed and if you go - prepare to wait in long lines for food. Well worth it, though. My favorite are the shishkabobs, pilaf and a piece of their sinfully good spanikopita. Mmmmm... I can't wait.

Also at the festival - Greek dancing, a little maketplace for jewelry, clothes, etc. and a tour of the beautiful church.

Click on the dancing men for more information and pictures, but I have to say it is much better in person - I think they need a better photographer and website designer.

Next up:

The Japanese Festival at the Missouri Botanical Garden. Click on the banner for a direct link. I love the Taiko drumming, the Sumo wrestling, the fantastic kimonos and jewelry for sale, the food, I could go on and on. The garden has a beautiful Japanese garden available to visit year round. My cousin got married there and it was just beautiful.

Crossing my fingers while I hope for good weather...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cookie, anyone?

There's nothing quite like the taste and smell of fresh baked cookies...
They aren't super special cookies - just regular old chocolate chip cookies...except I add a little extra vanilla - oh and I use Ghirardelli chocolate chips...and pecans - plenty of pecans. Yummmm... They're going fast! ;)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...