Tuesday, November 29, 2005


i had quite the day today, so i knew that i needed to cook/bake. unfortunately i wasn't in the mood to talk to anyone tonite. so the only communicating i wanted to do was with my kitchen aid mixer. sorry baby for being in such a mood but dinner was good ;)

for dinner i made a recipe that i found while going through a stack of recipes i have laying around. i got it from martha stewart.

tomato and olive penne

Serves 4; Prep time: 25 minutes; Total time: 25 minutes
The cherry tomatoes cook just long enough to bring out their juice, which blends with the garlic-flavored olive oil to make one of the best-tasting pasta sauces. If you’re cooking for children who don’t like black olives, toss the olives in for the adults after you’ve served the kids.

Salt and pepper

1 pound penne or other short pasta

1/4 cup olive oil

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

2/3 pound cherry tomatoes (2 cups), halved or quartered

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)

1/4 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook penne according to package instructions until al dente, about 13 minutes. Drain.

2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, and cook, stirring, until just golden, about 1 minute. Add cherry tomatoes, oregano, crushed red pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring, until tomato juices run, about 3 minutes.

3. Add penne, olives, parsley, and 1/4 cup Parmesan to the skillet and toss to combine. Serve with more cheese if desired.

Note: The easiest way to pit an olive is to lay a wide chef¿s knife over it and smack the blade with your fist or the palm of your hand. The olive should split open, and the pit will pop right out.

this was very, very good! i would like to try it next time with maybe some red or green peppers.

then on to the baking therapy. gosh how i love how baking makes me feel. must be the same way someone feels after they see their shrink.

i made these peanutbutter cookies except this time instead of reeses pieces, i added cashews. these turned out very well. i was worried b/c the cashews were salted and i thought that maybe i shoulda then not have added the salt that the recipe called for. but they turned out very good.

next, i made some coconut bars out of the new martha stewart "holiday cookies" magazine. i am not sure how these are going to turn out. i then added hershey kisses with almonds to the center of each bar.

coconut bars

using condensed and evaporated milk keeps these bars chewy

vegetable oil cooking spray
1 lb. grated fresh or unsweetened shredded coconut
2 3/4 cups of sugar
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk

1. coat a 13 by 18 inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. stir together coconut, sugar, condensed moik, and evaporated milk in a large saucepan. cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 30 minutes.

2. pour coconut mixture onto prepared sheet. spread to 1/2 inch thick using an offset spatula; shape into a 12 by 13 inch rectangle. let cool completely on sheet on a wire rack. cut into 1 1/2 by 2 inch bars. store between layers of parchment paper in airtight containers at room temperature up to one week.

note: i only had sweetened coconut, so i eliminated the sugar the recipe called for. i also used a fat free sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk. my coconut mixture was still a lil bit runny when i put it in the pan. i hope they turn out okay. i would hate to think that i wasted all that stuff. i'll let ya'll know how they turn out.

hope everyone had a good day :)

Monday, November 28, 2005


i managed to squeeze in at the last minute for moki's handcarved stamp swap. many craft bloggers have been making their own stamps using kits and rubber erasers. i was so excited when i saw a post over at joy's b/c i really wanted to give this a go and this was the incentive i need to try yet another craft.

we needed to make a piece of stationary and an embellishment (i.e. ribbon, tag, etc) using our stamped image.

i went with the playing card theme (big surprise). these stamps were so easy to make. the last time that i went to michael's, i bought the rest of their stamps. now i used the gum ones which is prolly not a really good idea b/c of the fact that they are so crumbly. but they carve so easily. after my crafting freeze is over, i will prolly buy a kit online.

my carved stamps.

stationary, playing card tag, and envelope (which is stamped on the front).

some other stamps i have made. an "E", an "e", and a pair of dice.

*sorry for the poor picture quality. it was nite time :)


You are KAREN FOSTER paper!
The present joys of life you doubtly taste by
looking back with pleasure on the past.
You love to scrapbook to cherish the memories. Your
albums no doubt have a clean natural look to
them and for the most part might like to keep
in theme with neutral colors and avoid brights.

Which Scrapbooking Paper Collection Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

got this quiz from greta. hmmm...it does kinda sound like me, but i do like to use bright colors occasionally...lol

Sunday, November 27, 2005


well today was greta's wreef (as she would call it) party.

it was SO MUCH FUN!!! i think we have decided that every holiday (mardi gras, valentine's day, easter, etc., etc.) we are going to have a lil party and make a wreath for it.

the food was yummy and the craftin' was in abundance. everyone's wreath was GORGEOUS!! i think we were all a lil surprised about how friggin' easy it was.

some of the yummies!!

the girls at work. left to right: jill, greta, and greta's mom.

say "wreeef!!!". left to right: jill, her lil boy tyler, greta, and greta's mom.

my wreath. a winter wonderland. the ornaments are handmade by me. filled with silver paper, white snowflakes, white glitter, and silver beads.

the goodie bag!!

the goodie: a yummy peppermint candle!

thanks again girl. i had a load of fun and cannot wait to do it again :)

luv ya!


i thought i would post just a couple of pictures from thanksgiving. funny thing is, i didn't get a pic of us eating, a pic of my mom and b.c., or a pic of the turkey...lol.

i'm thankful for this marriage. i am thankful for this man who is my rock. the man who lifts my chin when i am down and helps me realize that all my dreams can be a reality if i just set my mind to it. a man who makes me a better woman. for this i am truly grateful!

i am thankful for this lil girl. this lil girl that has taught me so much about life. how precious it is. this lil girl who has taught me how wondeful it is to have a daughter and all the wonderful things we have to look forward to in the future. a lil girl who is still trying to teach me patience. a lil girl who i cannot get enough kisses from. for this i am truly grateful!!

i am thankful for this lil man. for this lil guy has taught me so much. who has taught me the meaning of motherhood. who has taught me to laugh and roll my eyes. who has also learned to roll his own eyes from this. a lil guy who i see so much of myself in. a lil guy who loves to create and has an imagination larger than life. for this i am truly grateful!!

Saturday, November 26, 2005


i have just spent the past week recouping from the craft fair last saturday. its nice to come home and spend time with the family...lol. it wasn't as successful as i would have liked, but that i think was due to the fact that i live in a very small town and most people were there for the cheap books at the book sale (including me...ha!).

i would show you some lovely pictures of my table, but the card that i used (hitachi 4 gb microdrive aka piece of shit) has decided that it is going to not work, not be recognized by any computer i have put it in, and cause me to try to find someone or some place that may be able to retrieve the 300+ pictures i already had on it. the only pictures that i regret not having are from the craft fair. most of all the other ones were test shots. so as soon as i find out if i can retrieve the pictures, the card goes back to the company and they can send me a card that is NOT a microdrive. sensitive pieces of shit.

thanksgiving was great. hope everyone had a wonderful time with their loved ones. we sure did. yummy food, overstuffed bellies, and i luv the 70's on vh1. ya can't beat that.

on friday, me and greta headed out to do some shopping. believe it or not, it was not that bad. i picked up even more crafting supplies. seriously. i do not need anything else.

i am officially putting myself on a crafty-shoppping-freeze! no more craft supply shopping for me.

me and mike spent all day today cleaning. him on his side of his closet (thank God) and me cleaning/organizing/throwing out my craft supplies. i took the craft table that i did have (complete with lil pen holders and compartments) and gave it to mikey to use for his legos and his craft supplies. i took the old, metal desk outta his room and put it in a corner of my room for my "studio" desk. i then took the tall bookshelf and put it in bella's room and took her small one to put next to my "studio" desk. i bought this great 64 compartment-drawer thingy to organize buttons and such. boy was that fun..but also time consuming. my bedroom is a complete mess. it literally looks like hobby lobby threw up in there. but it is becoming more organized and for that i can get much more done.

well, i didn't intend on writing this much, but it looks like i did. tomorrow is greta's wreath party and i promise to come home with pictures. i also need to post pictures of the wonderful goodies that sunni sent me.

so much to do, so little time :)

Friday, November 18, 2005


well, i needed to run a couple of errands (i.e. bank and dollar general) so i thought i would swing by the library and get a head start on the book sale they are having and to ask about the size table i need to bring with me tomorrow. i got my answer and a whole pile of books. mostly children's books for the kiddos. there is one book though that i absolutely fell in love with (a lotta fallin' in love going on around here today eh?).

"the mysterious disappearance of leon (i mean noel)" by ellen raskin

would you look at those brilliant illustrations!!!! this book is filled with people made outta words. its the a word-y's (my own word for someone who loves words ;) dream. i can't wait to sit down and read the book and read all the words that make up all these lovely characters. are their word bodies filled with words that correspond to them? only the story?

oh i can't wait to find out.

oh, also while i was at the library, i saw my name in chalk where my table is going to go. at that moment did it feel like i was really doing this and that i got filled with excitement :)


i took today off of work to spend the day finishing up odds and ends for tomorrow.

okay, off to some french bread pizza and more ornaments.


it has arrived. the new love of my life. my camera. a canon rebel xt. i love how professional it sounds. even though i had to wait a whole extra day to get it, it was completely worth it. i love the way it feels in my hands. i love the way it sounds when a picture is taken. i love the way it feels to hold the lense to put it in focus. i love that i can take a buncha pictures back to back without waiting for a green light. i love the fact that my hubby already knows how to use it so he can teach me without having to read the manual. i love my husband for buying it for me.

i just love this damn camera!!!

Thursday, November 17, 2005


found this over at blythes wide shut. if you decide to play, please drop me a comment and lemme know so i can check out your answers :)

A is for age of first kiss: peck kiss: 6...kindergarten with michael murphy; french kiss: 6th grade with joey thomas

B is for booze of choice: crown & coke

C is for career: executive secretary to the major of a police department

D is for your dad's name: Mark (aka asshole)

E is for essential items to bring to a party: something delish to eat

F is for favorite song at the moment: geesh...this changes based on my mood, but i would have to say addicted by kelly clarkson

G is for favorite game: rummy 21

H is for hometown: i was born in cincinnati, but despite all the moving we've done, i have lived here the longest

I is for instruments you play: i can't play any instruments...hell, i can't even whistle :(

J is for jam or jelly you like: i'm not big on jelly/jam but i guess i would have to say strawberry or raspberry (of course i basing this mostly on thumbprint cookies :)

K is for kids?: abso-friggin'-lutely...mikey and bella and prolly one more in the near future.

L is for last kiss?: this a.m when i kissed the bug-a-boos when i dropped them off at school.

M is for mom's name: Julie

N is for name of your crush: Patrick Dempsey (swoon!!!)

O is for overnight hospital stays: 2 c-sections and my tonsils removed when i was lil.

P is for phobias: heights, snakes, dying, small, small spaces (not necessarily in that order)

Q is for quotes you like: "when you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everyone will respect you."-lao tzu (one day i will truly live by this. and another one "you can learn more about someone in one hour of play than a year of conversation"-plato (i believe and this is so friggin true...you see the real person when you play a board game with someone :)

R is for relationship that lasted the longest: the hubbers...6 years of marriage but have been together for 8.

S is for sexual preference: men...unless they are asking for a position here ;)

T is for time you wake up: 5:03 + a snooze button

U is for underwear: yeah, i wear it, but i have been known to go commando ;)

V is for vegetable you love: tomatoes, cukes, broccoli, carrots, i really luv it all.

W is for worst habit: over reacting to things

X is for x-rays you've had: teeth, knee, ankle, neck

Y is for yummy food you make: all sorts of yummy stuff...just check my archives.

Z is for zodiac sign: pisces...tried and true

your turn...

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


"I swear I am so proud of you....you're gonna do great"

-sent to me in an email from my bestest buddy greta in regards to the craft fair this saturday. i luv ya girl :)

Monday, November 14, 2005


i just love when i wake up in the a.m. (very early a.m....5:03 + a press of the snooze button to be exact), have my morning coffee, get ready for work, and open the front door to this:

this was the beautiful view that i was graced with from my front porch. you know a day shouldn't go wrong when you start it off like this.

then once we got home and me and the kiddos got settled in and ate, me and mikey tackled his first homework project. mikey received tom the turkey in his usual get up (feathers and a red thing that hangs from his chin) and tom the turkey begged mikey to give him a disguise so those awful hunters wouldn't catch him and serve him up on a platter.

so mikey decided that he wanted to dress tom up like a soldier.

and that we did.

how tom was given to mikey (we added him to some festive thanksgiving scrapbooking paper).

mikey working on tom.

tom getting some shiny, black boots.

tom all dressed up like a soldier.

i definately think that tom doesn't have to worry about becoming a turkey sandwich this thanksgiving :)

Sunday, November 13, 2005



us working hard

cheesin' for mike (actually we made mike take pictures of us. i mean, we both need to post about it right? this was right before greta was leaving, we almost forgot).

well i think i mentioned before that greta came over on friday and we got some scrapbooking done. i haven't scrapbooked since greta was on maternity leave with melana (melana is now 20 months old...lol).

i got a good bit done, i think though i was too busy thinking about the things i need to get done for next saturday.

but we had loads of fun and i hope that we will do it again really, really soon (ya hear me greta? maybe we can get together thanksgiving weekend since we are off for four days and we only eat on the first day off ;)

here are the pages i did:
sorry for the bad picture quality..lighting was baaad!!

then on saturday, we got up and got and went to a birthday party. after the birthday party, we drove all over the place looking for some bags that i need for next saturday (i swear guys, eventually i will talking about "next saturday"). needless to say, i didn't find what i was looking for exactly. once we came home, i got busy working on the owl cards that i posted last night. then me and mike stayed up to 3-friggin'-o'clock in the morning watching some of the 2nd season of the l word while i worked on some felt flower pins.

ya'll don't even wanna know what time i was up this morning and after i got some coffee, fruit, and a veggie sausage sandwich, i sat down at the studio (aka dining room table) and hung out with ms. sewing machine.

this is what we came up with today

WHEW!!! so that was my weekend. now i am about ready to sit in front of the tv for desperate housewives and grey's anatomy (of course while i work on more felt flower pins (like the one sitting on the orange/green/yellow coin purse).

hope ya'll had a good weekend and i will keep you posted in the final details for "next saturday".