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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

SEW THIS: Baby Shoes!

Prepare yourself for cuteness. Seriously. 
I got into this baby gift making thing totally unaware of the effects it would have on me. I believed because I am immune to the 'cuteness' most people find in every living thing under 2 yrs of age, that i would also be immune to items created for or belonging to such beings... so this is my surprised face! See? Because this cuteness is not even right-- it is obscene. I can't get over the little-ness of it all. it's so darn entertaining!
Anyhoodles... without further adieu... I made baby shoes and they are ridiculous! check it out:

(SPOILER ALERT: If you are a friend of mine happening upon my blog and are currently pregnant, have recently birthed a child or plan to within the next year or so... there is a very good possibility that you will be gazing upon your baby gift in the next few photos. Please avert your eyes if you desire it to remain a surprise.)

 Pink cotton w/ black canvas sole and lining.
(My very first attempt made out of scraps from my mama's scrap box! ha!)

Tan micro-suede w/ dot cotton lining and canvas sole

Pink satin 'Ballet' slipper with flannel lining

I got my pattern HERE but it is not exactly the sewing for dummies version I usually require... so after figuring it out and making a few adjustments... I am considering writing my own tutorial for shoes... or at least a 'tips and tricks' article for your sewing edification. (shrug) we'll see.
In the mean time scroll back up and take another look at those shoes... bask in the cuteness. It's ridiculous, isn't it? I like little things!

WAIT FOR THIS: Baby Giftssss!!!!

Coming soon to mommies everywhere...
I can barely contain my excitement. I have been hard at work in my little craft room (which is more like a dark dingy hole in the corner of the basement... but we will work on that another time) creating baby gifts galore! Everyone and their dog is pregnant right now and so I have been making baby shoes, tutus, tie-dyed onsies, burp cloths... and the next few posts will be dedicated to baby gifts! Some tutorials, pictures, and inspiration. LUCKY YOU! And lucky mommies-to-be for all the fun fabulous gifts they will receive.
Check back here reeeaaallly soon...

Monday, July 19, 2010

MAKE THIS: Key Lime Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

My sister and I were chatting the other day about our favorite desserts.. and she said hers was a toss up between cheesecake, key lime pie, and fresh strawberry pie. (and who wouldn't agree?) but as she was listing these off a little light bulb popped in the air above my head as I thought... HOW fantastic would those desserts be in combination??? And because I am up for a challenge... I went home and got to work... the next day I took my sister a Key lime Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake and she sat sighing, dreamily eating this new dessert created just for her! :) So I just had to share. Plus, it tastes like summer.

Key Lime Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

1 cup Graham cracker crumbs
2 tblsp granulated sugar
2 tblsp softened butter
4 8oz. pkgs cream cheese, softened/room temp
1 cup sugar
zest from 1 lime
3/4 cup key lime juice (I actually used regular limes, fresh squeezed.  I think Key Limes would be much better-- but would you believe Key Limes are hard to come by in KS??? HA! you can also use bottled Key Lime Juice)
1 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
3-4 tblsp flour
4-5 med size ripe strawberries
1 tblsp sugar
1/4 cup strawberry preserves

Pre-heat oven to 350.
Cut a 9 in circle parchment paper to line bottom of 9-in spring form pan.
Mix Graham cracker crumbs, sugar (2 tblsp), and butter, and press into bottom of pan. Bake in preheated oven for 5 mins, then remove to cooling rack. 
Using mixer cream together cream cheese, sugar (1 cup), and lime zest. While still mixing, pour in lime juice slowly ( so it doesn't splash and make a mess!) and then add one egg at a time until just incorporated. Add flour one tablespoon at a time untill you have a smooth, thick consistency (not runny). Pour mixture over graham cracker crust.
Wash and hull berries, and puree them with 1 tblsp sugar, add preserves to make one smooth, pourable mixture. Carefully pour the pureed mixture in a large spiral over the top of the cream cheese mixture. Use the tip of a small knife to 'swirl' the strawberries in, making loops or figure 8's across the top.
Bake for about 60 mins, or until a knife point comes out of the middle clean.
Cool completely be fore transferring from pan, and chill for several hours before serving (otherwise it all kinda slides apart... not pretty!) Serve with whipped cream and fresh berries on top!
ENJOY! (I know we did...)

Friday, July 16, 2010

LOOK AT THIS: ...to tide you over.

It's show week... (Come see ANNIE!) so I am kinda lacking in the projects and postings, but I am working on some recipes, baby gifts, and recovering a chair... so there is much to come, and soon! Hooray! In the mean time, here are some Annie Pics to look at! :)
"It's a hard knock life!"

Annie, a police officer and Sandy (HAYES!!!!)
Rooster, Lily St. Regis ("I'm named after the hotel"), and Miss Hannigan
"Something Was Missing"

(think we need a little wine to go along with our cheese?)

Saturday, July 3, 2010

MAKE THIS: Red, white, and blueberries!

Happy Fourth of July! I can think of no better way to celebrate a summer holiday then with baked goods. And I can think of no yummier baked goods, than those baked goods that include blueberries-- as blueberries just happen to be one of my favorite things on the planet. YUM. I stumbled accross this recipe at Smitten Kitchen and it's a toss up which I love more: the name, or the actual cake. Both are fabulous. Without further ado I give you the recipe... Have a safe and lovely holiday!

 Blueberry Boy Bait
2 cups plus 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
16 tablespoons unsalted butter (2 sticks), softened
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup whole buttermilk
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 13 by 9-inch baking pan. Whisk two cups flour, baking powder, and salt together in medium bowl. With electric mixer, beat butter and sugars on medium-high speed until fluffy, about two minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just incorporated and scraping down bowl. Reduce speed to medium and beat in one-third of flour mixture until incorporated; beat in half of milk. Beat in half of remaining flour mixture, then remaining milk, and finally remaining flour mixture. Toss blueberries with remaining one teaspoon flour. Using rubber spatula, gently fold in blueberries. Spread batter into prepared pan.
For topping: Scatter blueberries over top of batter. Stir sugar and cinnamon together in small bowl and sprinkle over batter. Bake until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in pan 20 minutes, then turn out and place on serving platter (topping side up). Serve warm or at room temperature. (Cake can be stored in airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.)

Friday, July 2, 2010

TRY THIS: Vintage Hairstyles

One of my favorite things about shows is learning about the fashions and hairstyles of that era. Currently working on a 1930's show... so I have been doing some research on fashion/hair/makeup. As I only do community and amature productions, everyone is responsible for doing their own hair and makeup, and well, I have this bad habit of making myself responsible for a lot of people's hair and makeup... becuase I like doing hair and makeup! I would say I am moderately talented at both... I at least know the right tips and tricks to make it work for the stage.
The past week I have been elbow deep in hair product for about three hours every night trying to create 1930's appropriate hairstyles for 4 different ladies.
Here is some of our inspiration: (I apologize for no photo credits, as most of these were collected by a friend. If you know the source of any of these... let me know! thanks!)

Aren't these ladies fabulous looking? :) I also found the following video super helpful:

I will post photos of our results next week... but I am really pleased with our results so far. It will be super exciting when we have all the hair, makeup, and costumes going. Check Back! :)

So here is one of the best 'hair' shots I have-- not stellar... but... you get a nice side shot of that wave! ;)
And this one is just because I think it's so darn adorable! :)

Thursday, July 1, 2010


This is one of my favorite things from our wedding. Instead of a traditional guest book with lines that people write their name on... (and that I would never glance at again) we decided to create a photo book and have people sign it 'yearbook style'. Plus we had all these FABULOUS engagement pictures take by Claire (of Visionaire Studios, OMG she is Fabulous!) and we wanted to do something cool to show them off. 
Originally I didn't want to tackle this project myself, because I wanted it to be very professional and a non-corny 'keepsake'. So I asked my photographer about it, and she was happy to create this very thing for me, but it was WAY more than I wanted to spend. But then I found out I could create something like what I wanted on Shutterfly... and I was skeptical on how it would turn out, but it was only about a $30 investment, so I thought it was worth a shot. I spent about an hour formatting and inserting my pictures, with their easy to use software-- and tons of options!-- then submitted my book, and crossed my fingers.
What I got in the mail was a beautiful custom created photo book that was exactly what I wanted! PERFECT. And very professional looking. And so ridiculously cheap. So 10 points for Shutterfly... and I have this feeling I am going to be making lots and lots more photobooks in the future. They have lots of sizes and options to make it perfect for gifts, brag books, etc. I love this!
(Side note: We purchased the copyright for the pics from our photographer, so this was totally legal. Please don't use pics that you don't have copyrights to... it's just not fair to photographers that work hard and use their talents to capture your memories... so keep things legal and ethical, kids!)
Check out our book below: