Thursday, December 18, 2008

Update - Productivity!

Is it lame to feel accountability to a blog? As if someone out there cares that I'm getting things done?
Photos will appear in a bit. For now, I've finished:
  • Doll quilts for Laurel
  • Jammies for Will and James - just need some elastic
  • Pincushions - adorable little buggers - need stuffing
  • Aprons for boys are cut out and getting sewn today
  • Dresses for girls are 2/3 done - finishing today!
  • One bag as a gift is done
  • Will's pillowcases
  • Laurel's apron

Left to do (besides what is mentioned above):

  • two more bags as gifts
  • a doll apron for Laurel, if I have time
  • a church bag for Will, if I have time
  • Laurel's jammies - they're cut, just need sewing!
  • ship what needs to be shipped!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I should be sewing . . . .

but I am so very tired (see my other blog to know why). I have several projects done, but so many to finish. I'm waiting for some things to come in the mail so I can complete the rest of these. I have to be done by Thursday - that's the deadline I've given myself. We'll see if that happens.
What I've finished:
  • Will's Thomas the Train pillowcases
  • Laurel's dolly quilts - two of them
  • another apron for Laurel

What I have left to finish:

  • pin cushions
  • jammies for all three kids
  • Will's apron
  • Aprons for Preston and Carson
  • Dress for Gracie
  • Dress for Laurel
  • gift for Angela
  • gift for Annette

Can I get it done? Had it not been for my neighbor's boyfriend's stupid car, I would be feeling more rested today. Grr. I'll power through and at least get the pincushions done. I need Bing Crosby to help me out with this one!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Cakes

They didn't turn out as perfect as I would have liked, but oh were they tasty. Tragically, those responsible for cutting and serving them didn't care so much about how it looked as maximizing servings! By they time they made it to the dessert table, they were not as attractive as they were coming into the building.

This is the cranberry orange cake. I tweaked the cranberry obsession recipe from Sunset magazine - added orange zest and juice to the cake part. VERY tasty. Aaron wants this one again for Christmas.
This one, I used my best chocolate cake recipe, a white chocolate peppermint cream recipe out of Bon Appetit magazine and then a TON of chocolate ganache. It got attacked on my way into the church, hence the smear across the back. It was just right - just enough peppermint to make it good, but not too much. They sliced it with a spoon. Sigh.
Can I just say that I appreciate my mom and grandmother teaching me that you should put forth your best effort? That special occasions call for something, well, special. I just don't think I'll be making anything this special for a ward function anytime soon. It hardly gets appreciated!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The BEST Hot Chocolate

You just have to try this hot chocolate. It's not cocoa - it's the real deal - thick and rich and creamy and delicious. Make it with the best chocolate you can find - it will only be as good as the chocolate you use. Ican find Scharffenberger chocolate at QFC, Albertson's, Yokes, and Safeway. Ghiradelli is pretty good too. Do not EVER use Baker's unsweetened. Ick. Embrace your inner chocolate snob!

2 1/2 cups whole milk

4 ounces 99% chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 t. vanilla

Heat the milk over mediumheat until hot to the touch. Whisk in the chocolate and sugar and continue whisking for 1-2 minutes until the sugar is dissolved. Whisk in the vanilla. Reduce heat to low. It will thicken as it sits.

Serves 4. Serve with some good shortbread cookies. I like mine with marshmallows (homemade peppermint or raspberry or orange ones are fantastic!). Try it. You'll love it!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Preview of things to come . . .

Doll quilt for Laurel

Coloring wallets for the kids

Apron for Will

Jammies for all

And the baking. Oh the baking!

Cranberries and Oranges - in a cake. It's going to be gorgeous!

Chocolate Peppermint cake - it's going to be gorgeous too!

Buche de Noel - so excited for this one.

Gingerbread houses and trains. Going to be fun.

Merry Christmas! Once finals are over, this place is going to get busy!
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