Monday, August 31, 2009

crazy cupcakes #2

After my dark chocolate cupcakes, I had the urge to bake more and decided to try carrot cupcakes!! I made cream cheese frosting again and decided to nix the nuts in the recipe. I found that the splash of orange juice the recipe called for was genius because it added so much flavor. I had a girls night the following evening and we drank wine and devoured these yummy little things.  This is what happens when you have too much fun with a frosting gun.... !!

Helloooo Monday


Hello Monday!! After a weekend of playing golf, wine tasting, relaxing and exploring the central coast of California I must say that I am a little sad to see the weekend go. However, camping is just around the corner and I am busy trying to figure out some yummy recipes that are easy and oh so tasty!! Do any of you have any recipes that fit my camping food criteria: 
tasty
quick and easy
fresh
different then franks and buns don't get me wrong I might have these one night but I want to have
variety?!!
If you have a good recipe/idea please send it my way

Enjoy your Monday everyone!!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

dabble


I couldn't resist writing one more post before I leave on my weekend adventure!! Yesterday, I received my own copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking in the mail and plan to bring it as reading material for my car ride!! I hope all of you dabble in something new this weekend, enjoy some good cheese, a good Cabernet or some quiet time with a good book, but most of all, ENJOY!! 

Thursday, August 27, 2009

One Year





I am calling it an early week because tomorrow I will be headed down to the central coast for my.... One Year Anniversary!!! Marc and I actually got married last September 5'th but we will be camping with friends on our actual anniversary so; we will be celebrating a week earlier. I can't believe it's been one year!! What have I learned in one year about marriage, hmmmm?? 

enjoy individual hobbies: for me it's photography and for Marc it's cycling
grow with each other
don't go to bed angry: haha this has happened a couple of times
my number 1 rule of thumb is.... Couples who play together stay together; whether it's going running, laughing, swimming, or just goofing around treat each other like friends!!!

I hope all of you have a splendid weekend!! If you have any advice for us no longer newlyweds show the love and leave a comment!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Gone Fishing


So, I am thinking of taking up a new hobby: Fishing!! Ok, don't all jump at once but here is the deal! I am going camping in two weeks with a crew of very avid fishermen. I've decided I refuse to just sit and watch so I am going to give fishing a whirl!! Any one know of a good fishing pole for a beginner? However, keep in mind that my fishing pole needs to be sturdy enough for me to reel in a ten pound trout!! 

Monday, August 24, 2009

cupcakes for pops


My dad celebrated his 51'st birthday yesterday and to celebrate I made a batch of homemade cupcakes. I love creating snacks, lunches and dinners but baking is a bit more difficult for me. I always want to improvise but adding a bit more vanilla, flower or an extra egg just doesn't work. I made dark chocolate cupcakes with a cream cheese frosting, mmmmmm!! My dad loved them!! His birthday turned out lovely and low key and just the way he wanted it!! My dad, uncle and aunt spent the whole afternoon telling family stories, laughing and making us laugh. Congratulations Pops on turning 51 and like I wrote in your card: You only are old when you stop laughing!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

ahhh the weekend


The weekend is finally here and I am incredibly excited!!! I don't have huge plans but that is why I am excited. I am usually go, go, go but tonight I plan to relax on my couch with a glass of wine, a good book and a baguette topped with some type of cheese. I am also excited about a print I just purchased from Made by Girl. I stumbled upon the print when a friend told me in an email, "this reminds me of you"!!! She gave me the link to a delightful blog called Oliver and Lilly's.  I emailed Oliver and Lilly's to find out that they ship out of Canada so the shipping would cost me an arm and a leg. Instead they referred me to Made by Girl where they buy from. The print reads: I LOVE BLOGS and coffee, pretty much spot on with what I love!!! I hope all of you have a sweet weekend filled with love, coffee and tea!!! 
*print first seen on Oliver and Lilly's from Made by Girl

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Mccune's Olallieberry Jam


For my birthday, my good friend Emily gave me a jar of her homemade Olallieberry jam. Emily knows me too well and I savored every last drop. Emily has decided to share her recipe with all of you and I hope you enjoy it. I love that Emily and her mom spent time together one weekend picking Olallieberries and then canned their own jam for friends and family. You can put Olallieberry Jam on anything but my personal favorite is on crackers with a slice of Gruyere cheese!! Enjoy!!! 

Olallieberry Jam

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Makes: about 8 (1-cup) jars

Need: 6 cups prepared olallieberries
4-1/2 cups sugar
1 box Sure Jell For Less or No Sugar Needed Recipes Premium Fruit Pectin


Wash jars and screw bands in hot soapy water (you can also run them in the dishwasher on the hottest cycle). Pour boiling water over flat lids in saucepan, off the heat.  Let stand in hot water until ready to use.  Drain well before filling.

Clean and rinse your berries.  Mix 1/4 cup of the sugar (from the measured amount in the bowl) and pectin in small bowl.  Add to fruit mixture in sauce pot; mix well.  Gently crush berries (with a potato masher keeping some berries intact (depending on your preferred consistency).

Bring Mixture to full rolling boil (a boil that doesn't stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring occasionally.  Stir in remaining 4-1/4 cups sugar.  Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.  Skim off any foam with metal spoon. Ladle immediately into prepared jars, filling to within 1/8 inch of tops.  Wipe Jar rims and threads with a damp towel. Cover with 2-piece lids.  Screw bands tightly.

Using tongs or a canner immerse jars into boiling water (in a large stockpot).  The water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches. Cover and boil for 10 minutes.  Remove jars and place upright on a towel to cool completely.  After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger.  If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary. Once cooled, enjoy!!!

*Emily Mccune's recipe and photograph taken by Luke Snyder






Wednesday, August 19, 2009

oui oui


Paris never looked so lovely, so exquisite to the sense as it now appears in the memory
-Brander Mathews

I finally finished My Life in France last night!! Julia Child's energy and love for french cooking, culture and life jumps out on every page. If you are in need for some inspiration I would highly recommend reading My Life in France. I thought I would share a little event going on at one of my favorite bookstores, Kepler's Books and Magazines. Kepler's is having a birthday party in honor of Julia Child this Thursday, August 20, from 6-9pm. All cookbooks will be 20% off and champagne and cake will be served. What a great way to celebrate!!!  Oui, Oui to this!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

go FIGure


It's great to be back and have a routine again!! This morning I went on a two mile walk and forgot how great I feel being out and about. I spent the walk day dreaming, admiring all kinds of flowers and loving life. Just when I was on a happy to be outside high, my left foot stepped in something gooey.... dog @#$% !! Go FIGure!! 

I've been completely inspired by My Life in France and have only 55 pages to go. All I can think about is delicious French Food or good food in general. Luckily, I saw a great recipe on Lovely Little Things for Fig Pizza. My dad gave me two figs on Sunday and I plan to chop those little things up for my pizza. We will have to see how the fig pizza turns out but at least I know there is no chance at all for me to land in !@#$. Is anyone else reading My Life in France or just inspired by Julia Child? I would love to know and hope all of you have a FIGGY day!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Safe and Sound



I made it home from Australia on Friday after a very long 14 hour plane ride. Friday and Saturday nights were a bit tough but resulted in me almost finishing "My Life in France" a book about Julia Child. Last night, I was back to normal and sound asleep by 10, woot, woot!! Here are a few of my favorite things from my trip to Australia:

homemade gin and tonics with extra lemon courtesy of my dear friend Mez
morning and afternoon walks to downtown Glebe I couldn't believe the heaps of bookstores/cafes
walking everywhere
taking a seven hour road trip to Coff's Harbour
muesli mornings with peppermint tea
the slow pace of Australia
staying with good friends and traveling with my sister... I was really able to experience the Sydney life
Saturday Markets where I purchased all kinds of goodies from: sour candy ropes, a new writing tote, a necklace of trinkets and a few treasures

I am hoping I can keep up the slow pace of life back here but it's going to take some effort. So far so good because I just enjoyed a big bowl of muesli with blubberries and raspberries!!! 

Sunday, August 9, 2009

bubbles

small things in sydney


Sometimes, the smallest things are easily missed. Yet, if you take the time to look around; they always stand out!!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Fun Run


 A bunch of my friends and I did the Sydney Fun Run today: so memorable!! We walked 13 miles throughout Sydney with over 75,000 people. My legs are sore and I am exhausted. To cope with the exhaustion my sister and I ordered a family style pizza, two cokes, two lattes and  ate till our little stomachs were content. It's funny to me that 1. I would never order a coke at home, 2. I  have never had a meat lovers pizza till now :) 
 I hope all of you take time to enjoy the small things this weekend!!!!! 

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Australia in Winter

It's Winter in Australia and on a walk one morning I mumbled this to myself:

Spring in the Morning
Summer in the Afternoon
Winter in the Evening
I am having troubles loading pictures but when I return home I will have a heap load of pictures to share. I hope all of you have a wonderful weekend filled with yummy things!! Here is what is on the agenda on my side of the world:

Shopping at the Local Markets for trinkets
A stop at the Clipper Cafe
Adventuring in Sydney by foot
The Sydney FUN RUN: a ten mile race from city to surf
Off to Coff's Harbor for the rest of my trip

Happy Weekend!!!! 




Wednesday, August 5, 2009

love


I couldn't resist taking a photo of this cute couple on the beach in Watson's Bay!!! I did feel a bit like a stalker but decided to forget that vibe and go for it. So far, the people in Sydney have been warm, inviting and all together lovely. This couple made me think about LOVE, so, I hope to spread some love your way today.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cheery


I hope this photo adds some cheer to your day!!! I love the color of australian money. Maybe, because I love the color so much I will spend less :)

Clipper Coffee


Here is the tasty little coffee I enjoyed at the Clipper Cafe yesterday!!! Lattes are smaller over here but the taste is unreal: strong, fresh and tasty!!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Clipper Cafe

Hello Lovelies,
I'm in Sydney Australia for the next week and on a bit of an adventure. I am unable to load pictures to the posts but for now I will keep my posts short and sweet!!!  Today we went to Clipper Cafe in Glebe, an eclectic suburb outside of Sydney. I hope all of you have a delightful week!! Here is a short poem I wrote while relaxing in the Clipper Cafe, enjoy!!

Ground Coffee
quiet chatter
real chatter
people sipping
coffee
really enjoying
living
laughing...
LIFE