Join me for some fun!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Love Rules

Hubby and I are teaching a 
Marriage and Family Relations class
to young single adults and I took a
canvas wall hanging that I had purchased
and adapted it and printed one
out for each of the attendees.  Then
we went through each point and had
a discussion on the point.

We will be celebrating 36 years of marriage
next month and feel very blessed to have had
this number of years together.  As I said to
the young adults, we have lots of funny stories
about things we did wrong, and everyone
will have their own funny stories.  The point is
to work it out, communicate together and laugh
about it together.  Working at marriage will
be the greatest work they do, but it does take
work and care over all of the years.

Feel free to save this image and 
print it and share it.  It would be really
nice printed on canvas too.

  I am going to frame one for each
of my children to have in their homes.

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Monday, April 13, 2015

Salted Caramel Frosted Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Filling

Sweet and salty and creamy -
this is one temptation that you
might want to just eat by the spoonfulls
or even pipe it straight into your mouth!

I am not kidding!  This is divine.

Of course you would never serve something without
taste testing it, especially a new recipe

but this recipe has to come with a warning - 
once you taste test, you might keep tasting
and tasting and tasting!

Wow!  Stop now - skip the cupcakes - just indulge!!

Ok, I had to take the cupcakes to an event
so I had to keep on
going but this is unbelievable!

I have been searching for a Salted Caramel Frosting
recipe that didn't start with melted sugar (as I have
not liked working with melted sugar for a caramel sauce)
and this one by 
made me excited to try it.

I adjusted it a bit (don't we always do that)
and loved the end result.  I also used her recipe
for the semi-homemade chocolate cupcakes too
and they were great.

Salted Caramel Frosting

1 C. melted butter
2 C. dark brown sugar
2/3 C. heavy cream plus 2-4 T. additional
1/2 tsp. salt
6 C. powdered sugar
Additional coarse sea salt if desired

In a medium saucepan stir together the
melted butter, brown sugar and cream.  
Heat the mixture together over medium heat
until the sugar crystals have all melted.  Add
salt and bring to a rolling boil and boil for 3 minutes.
It should form a soft ball when dropped into a
glass of cold water.

Remove from the heat and let cool completely.
Don't be tempted to rush this step.  I let mine
cool overnight.  Mine ended up much thicker
than hers appears as I boiled it for an extra minute.

Remove about 1/2 C. caramel for filling the cupcakes.

Place the remaining caramel in a large mixer bowl
and add the 6 C. of powdered sugar.  Add 2 T. cream
and begin to mix the frosting with the whip attachment.
Add additional cream if needed until you create a soft, fluffy

Hollow out chocolate or vanilla cupcakes and pipe
a small amount of caramel into the cupcake. 

Frost and sprinkle with additional coarse
sea salt if desired.  I piped the frosting on
with a 1M tip in a rose design.  

Enough to frost 24 cupcakes.

(I filled some with chocolate ganache too but
preferred the caramel filling.)

Click here for printable recipe.


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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

It's Garden Thyme

Have you started planting anything yet?

My youngest granddaughter and I
planted peas, arugula and carrots
the other day.  It is wonderful when they
love to do anything, even chores, with you.

It's garden time and I am ready for it!

Of course some of my favorites are herbs
as they come back every year so early.

Lettuce and spring plants are going in now
and summer plants in a little while.  I let
my lettuce, arugula and cilantro go to
seed during the summer and they sow themselves
so that they come up all over the garden in early
spring.  It is always a fun surprise to see
where they grow.

Our weather was so warm this winter
that my rosemary wintered over.  That
has never happened before.

Our plate stack consists of beautiful whites
like the tulips and spring greens like the herbs.

I love the textures of the white plates and the
pop of color the placemats give.

 The stack is topped with a spring green
flower bowl that creates a nest for
our seeds and mini trowel.

The beaded napkin nestles in amongst
the plates for more textural interest.

Our cream colored flatware are perfect
for this table.  Did your flatware ever disappear
into the garden as the kids used them for "diggers"?

Mine sure did!

My fancy flatware caddy is filled with spring flowers
and herbs and is the focal point of the center of the table.
I found my Godinger flatware caddy at Tuesday Morning
but I did see some online on Amazon.  I love how versatile
and elegant it is.

Other spring greens are brought into the
center of the table with a moss ball in a
clay urn

and a chicken wire cloche.

My ever useful green bubble goblets are the featured stemware.

I hope spring has come where you are and
that you are enjoying it.

(I am, except for hayfever, but I read that eating
a teaspoon of local honey can help with allergies
and I am doing it and IT WORKS!  I still have
to take my allergy medicines, but it helps.)

Even if you aren't a gardener, get out and 
plant something and watch it grow.  It is
fun and children love to see what they
have planted grow.  

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Monday, April 6, 2015

Grandma's Recipe Apron

Wouldn't it be wonderful to have your grandmother's
favorite recipe as a keepsake that you could actually
use and keep her memory alive and close?

Most of us have fond memories of treasured memories
that waft into the recesses of our minds.  I was just 2 
when I remember coming into my 
grandmother's farmhouse kitchen
and looking up with the big eyes of a child 
and asking for a cookie that was fresh
off the pan.

 To my little mind it seemed
to be the biggest cookie ever that she handed down to
her little grandchild.  My grandmother passed away
just after I turned two, that is how I know how young
I was in this vivid memory.

 Later, I asked my aunt if Grandma had ever
made giant sugar cookies.  I didn't know if she had or
if it was my own small size that made the cookies seem
so big in the memory of a little two year old.  

Yes, she told me, Grandma had a special sugar cookie
she made that was of extraordinary size.  That aunt went on
to create many, many memories in the kitchen for us and
my mother also.  To have one of their recipe cards with
their personal handwriting is a treasure, but now you can
turn that treasure into wearable, useable art.

My niece approached me and asked me to help her friend
design and sew two aprons, 
one for her mother and one for her mother-in-law 
with recipes from their own mothers printed on fabric
from their hand written recipe cards.

I instantly fell in love with this keepsake. is the wonderful company
that will turn your recipe cards or whatever design
you desire into fabric.  They advertise that it is 
custom print on-demand and no minimum order.
You can design fabric, wallpaper or gift wrap and
having seen the final product, I am very impressed.

Kaylee had ordered 1 yard each of a heavy cotton.
The price at the time she ordered it was about $25
a yard.  I thought that was very reasonable.
You can see that the recipe card is repeated throughout
the fabric.  We decided that we wanted the title of
the card to be front and center and we didn't want too many
ruffles to cover up the recipe and handwriting so I just
added a ruffle at the bottom to make it more feminine.

Using a butcher's apron as a pattern, I cut the body of
the apron out, then serged and turned over and hemmed
all of the edges.  Measuring the bottom edge, I doubled the
length and made a 5 inch ruffle for the bottom hem.  This
also had the edges serged.  After gathering, I marked the
ruffle and the bottom hem in fourths and then pinned the
ruffle on, pulling in and adjusting the gathers.  Finally
I sewed the ruffle to the bottom.  Make the ties at the neck
and waist out of remaining or coordinating fabric or you
could even purchase trim for the ties.

Wouldn't this be a wonderful gift for Mother's Day
for the woman who has everything?!!  

Maybe I even want to make them for my daughters
with a recipe card with my handwriting on it.

 Your imagination can
go wild with this fun online source.  How about aprons
or tea towels or even a skirt from your child's artwork?
Or maybe get in touch with your inner artist and design
some fabric for yourself.  What a great opportunity to
become a fabric designer.

Check them out.  They also have beautiful fabric designs
that are unique.

They have since received their gifts and
I have received a report back that they love
their apron mementos but don't want to 
wear them and get them dirty!!!  Haha!!
Well, make two - one for show and one for use!

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Saturday, April 4, 2015

In My Easter Bonnet

Happy Easter 1956!  

I found these
wonderful Easter Sunday photos of my
parents all dressed up ready to go to
church for Easter Sunday with their darling
children.  One of my favorite parts of
Easter as a child was a new dress and an
Easter bonnet, new shoes, a new purse and
gloves.  How I wish I had some of those
treasures, especially my little tiny gloves.

This is my mother with my sister Jean on
the left and my brother Fritz on the right.

Dad is dressed up and looking fine in his pink tie.
I love how it matches Jean's beautiful bonnet
and coat.  Isn't Fritz's jacket beautiful and what
about that tiny bow tie?

Here we are two years later and I have arrived,
and am in my pretty yellow jacket and bonnet.  
I love the look on Jean's face!
Again, Dad has a tie that is matching Jean's

What treasures to find. It is so fun to be
searching for these photos and the stories
they tell. 

I hope you have a wonderful Easter Sunday.
What a wonderful time of year as we 
celebrate the resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ.

It is my favorite time of year right after Christmas.

May you feel the joy and hope of the good news
that He lives!  I bear testimony of that fact and
rejoice in it.  That is the Good News!

Happy Easter.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

My Purple Chocolat Easter Table

Today's Easter table was inspired by
these beautiful mercury glass eggs
set on silver pedestals that I  found this
year.  I love the soft purple and silver.  The
silver one even has jewels on it.

Chocolate bunnies, spring flowers, a sparkling Easter
bunny and purple mercury glass eggs join
the table for a soft and elegant look.

I brought out the best silver for this elegant table.

A pearlized egg tied with some tulle becomes
a napkin ring for our silver bordered napkin.

The plate stack is topped with a mercury glass plate.

Our majestic rabbit stands in a wire cloche
surrounded by mercury glass eggs of all sizes
in purple and silver.

Two faux chocolate bunnies always come out at

The tulips are in bloom all around the yard
so a few came in to adorn the table.

I hope you are all ready for Easter
and enjoying this beautiful time of year.

We have been enjoying beautiful spring weather
but today it is snowing and threatening all of
my fruit trees.  It is nice to be inside and
enjoying spring on the inside of the house.

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Monday, March 30, 2015

Why I Love Purple - It Must Be In My Blood!

See that handsome young man in his
deep purple shirt and his deep purple car?
Who wouldn't be attracted to a man that looks
like that?  Sure glad my mother was attracted to him.

I saw this picture of Dad and all I said was,
"It isn't my fault!  See?!!  That's why I love purple!!!"

I think purple was bred into my veins before
I even came to earth!  

Real men wear purple and Dad was a real man!

He has been gone for over 20 years now and 
Mother has been gone for over 25.  I have started
writing his life story.  

When we cleaned out their house my brother took
all of the old slides and he painstakingly transferred
them to the computer for us.  These are treasures
that no one had seen for years since they were slides.

What a labor of love this is.  I have felt them both
so close as I work on their story, especially Dad's as
Mother wrote hers down but we typed it up before
digital cameras and computers and so I am going to
work on it and add photos.  

They were a beautiful couple who married right before
WWII ended.  He had been injured 10 days after landing
on the beaches of Normandy and was sent stateside but
instead of being let off in Chicago close to his home, he was
sent out to Utah where he met her at a USO type dance.

She aspired to be a writer when they were first married
and although I had known that, I had never read anything
she wrote or knew anything about her writing career.
Buried in the things my other brother brought home
from their house are her short stories and articles
and information on her publishing and her earnings.

The last treasure is a stack of their letters to one another.

(Dad's 1949 Ford Deluxe 2 Door Sedan as Ford said it, "The car that saved Ford."
See what you can learn on the internet and include in your story?  He was a Ford man
all of his life.)

Write your own life story now.  Add photos and letters
and personal touches.  Write the stories of those you love.

I read this wonderful quote and included it in his story - 
"What is left of me is what is written in the hearts and
minds of those who knew and loved me most.  They wanted my
memory to live on for others who come trailing clouds of glory
into this world."

Take the time to remember your loved ones
and write their stories.  Write your own story
for there will be generations who treasure it
and find out why they loved this or that 
through what you leave in your story.

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