Friday, August 27, 2010

Pink Red Velvet

One of my husband’s co-workers asked if I could bake a dozen Red Velvet cupcakes for her granddaughter’s birthday.  Of course, I couldn’t resist.  An excuse to bake AND enjoy extras!

She said her granddaughter loved anything pink and princess.  I knew immediately I was going to tint the dreamy cream cheese frosting (how can you go wrong with a stick of butter, cream cheese and sugar!) pink, but I wanted to do a little more.  I found a mold for a tiara cupcake topper.  It was perfect!  I just had to fill the molds, let it set and then stick them into the frosted cupcakes.

Sadly, I could not get my white chocolate to temper properly and filling the molds was not as simple as it should have been.  The molds got air bubbles in them that I could not get rid of despite all my efforts.  Alas, no chocolate tiaras.  BUT, I am going to be making a bunch of candy just for practice, so if you’re in my ‘hood swing on by.  I’ll have my very own chocolate making factory going!

Below are pictures of the cupcakes.  Nothing spectacular because, again….stupid white  chocolate!  I didn’t even bother taking pictures of the tiaras.  Only a couple came out okay, but still weren’t photograph worthy.

Pink Red Velvet
Packaged and ready to go

That’s all I got.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Thursday Thirteen 8/12/2010

Summer is almost over.  That went by much too fast.  Here's this week's Thirteen, which also includes a few reviews of books I somehow squeezed in the last couple of weeks:

1.  We went to a Crawfish Festival!  It was nice, not too crowded, plus the kids had fun.  My husband had a Gator Stick and shared with our daughter.  My son wasn't interested in it.  He just wanted to dance!  Which he did, along with his baby sister.  I'm glad it wasn't too hot.  The sun was out but there was a nice cool breeze.

2.  We attended a birthday party for the daughter of a friend who I've known since both our sons attended an Early Intervention program together.  It was held at a gymnastics facility (the same one both my kids go to).  Everyone had such a great time!  My daughter was sleeping when we first arrived so when she woke up she was confused.  She started looking for her gymnastics coach, forgetting that we were there for a party.  My son enjoyed himself as well.  I was bummed (sort of) that the adults didn't get to play!  I wanted a turn on the giant trampoline!  They did say that there were adult classes available, but I'm afraid I'd hurt myself and then not be able to run anymore.  Besides, I just wanted to jump on the trampoline and nothing else.  Oh, wait.  I wanted to do the zip line thing too.  Lucky kids!

3.  Okay, book review one.  I became a fan of Jen Lancaster when I read her book:  Bitter Is The New Black.  HILARIOUS!  Seriously, if you need a good laugh and brain candy, this will do it.  I read it during my birthday trip to Vegas and while I had a great time with my family, I swear I could have just stayed on a comfy chair curled up with this book.  I've read most of her books since then; I think there may only be one that I haven't read yet.  Maybe.  I checked out My Fair Lazy from our local library.  While it was "classic" Jen Lancaster, this one didn't make me laugh as much as I had hoped.  The complete title is:  My Fair Lazy: One Reality Television Addict's Attempt to Discover If Not Being A Dumb Ass Is the New Black, or, a Culture-Up Manifesto.  I suppose the first problem is that I don't watch much t.v. let alone reality t.v.  The only reason I even glance at shows like Survivor or Big Brother is because my hubby likes watching it.  I usually have a book or magazine in hand when those shows are on and periodically glance up when there's some sort of challenge, just to see how it will end.  While the book made me giggle every now and then and was a break from If God Is Good: Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil, there were a lot of references to several reality shows that I didn't get, simply because I don't watch them.  Still, it was a good "manifesto" and shed a little light on the effects of these so-called "reality" shows...nothing you don't already know, but with a fun spin on it.  Read it if you're a fan of many reality shows, except for the Kardashian one.  Jen writes one line about it in her book and it made me laugh out loud with such gusto my husband smiled and shook his head at me!

4.  My son started gymnastics camp and is having a great time!  My daughter takes a class there too, so when they see each other they both get excited, as if they haven't seen each other in ages.  It's cute to hear them yell out each other's names as they happen to pass each other.

5.  My parents, brother and his girlfriend came down to move my bro down and to visit.  I'm excited for my brother starting grad school, but I know he's nervous and it's a big move for him.  It's a pretty intense Ph.D. program, with few breaks, but I know he'll do well.  I'm very proud of him.

6.  Another book review:  The One That I Want: A Novel.  A book like this is usually not my cup of tea but it was on Jen Lancaster's fiction read list.  I'm always curious what author's read and when Jen came out with her list I picked this book from it.  I picked this one, piqued by its premise about the main character being able to see the future.  For me, it was a quick and somewhat interesting read, but too obvious and with too much of a "made for t.v." ending.  I don't watch the Lifetime channel (I just see commercials on other channels sometimes) but this book is dripping of a Lifetime movie.  Too much "chick lit" for me.

7.  A few days ago both my son and I were feeling a bit under the weather, not on the same day, but feeling a bit off nonetheless.  On both occasions my baby girl came up to each of us and asked what was wrong.  I told her I wasn't feeling good and when she asked her big brother what was wrong he replied, "I'm sick, leave me alone!" (LOL).  Both times my daughter, sweetie that she is, went and got her doctor kit to "fix" us.  I got several shots and was instructed to say, "Aaaaah" as she shoved a thermometer in my mouth.  My son was not as cooperative and just got a lot of shots and was repeatedly asked, "You okay?"  My son found it more annoying than endearing.  Still, it was one of those things that if she were to become a doctor, I can recall this and tell her that's when it started.  And if she doesn't want to be a doctor, I can still recall this and tell her how thoughtful and caring she's always been.

8.  Tomorrow my girlfriend at 10x Desserts is celebrating a birthday.  Happy Birthday my dear friend!  Check out her blog filled with beautiful, mouthwatering and inspiring photos and recipes.  Cheers to you!

9.  Last book review:  The Pact: A Love Story.  This is my second Jodi Piccoult book.  My first was My Sister's Keeper: A Novel before the movie came out.  (Which, by the way, if you have NOT watched the  movie yet, I highly suggest reading the book first.  Trust me.  The movie does not do this book justice).  Anyway, The Pact was an intense page turner that follows two teens and their families after a suicide pact is carried out, except there is one survivor.  I can't say much more, except that I really, really liked this book and many times while I was reading it my heart was pounding and I found myself holding my breath.

10.  August 13 marks the 2 year anniversary of my daughter's spinal surgery.  My daughter was born with a tethered spinal cord which attached to her left hip.  The surgery that was done short of her turning 5 months old was to release as much of the spinal cord as possible to avoid complications as she begins to grow (as portrayed once in a Grey's Anatomy show...though they made it seem like a simple snip would make it all go away.  Um, no!)  I thank GOD that the surgery went well and while her bladder is "paralyzed" (she has a neurogenic bladder) it's not her legs, which was very possible.  She's a happy, jumping, dancing all over the place little girl.  I am very thankful she is my daughter.

11.  Speaking of my daughter...I rarely wear perfume because my husband is sensitive to my favorite ones and refers to it as my "Husband Repellent".  One morning, I sprayed some on, knowing that by the time my hubby got home the scent will have dissipated.  We were on our way out so I picked up my baby girl and as I did she crinkled her nose, sniffed a few times (she sounded like a bloodhound on the hunt) and then asked quickly in a very tiny, inquisitive voice, "What's that smell?"  It made me laugh because she asked as if she wanted to keep it on the down low but just had to know and she said it so fast it came out more like "Was-sat-smell?"!  Then, since I laughed, she kept doing it.  I need to catch her doing it.  It is so funny.

12.  My poor son lost the m&m hat he got while we were in Vegas last year.  He lost it at the Craw Fish Festival.  He loves m&ms and when we went to the m&m store I gave him a pretty big budget, knowing he'd want a bunch of stuff.  If you happen to go to Vegas please let me know.  I'd like to replace the hat!

13.  Last, but not least, I think I found a race.  A half-marathon in October.  I haven't signed up yet because for some reason they don't have all the info I need to make an informed decision, BUT I have started training.  I've already changed up my workout routine and am ramping up the mileage.

That's all folks.  Have a wonderful weekend. 

Count your blessings.

Monday, August 9, 2010

And the winner is...

Well, look up and you'll see!

Congratulations to Lisa for her suggestion.  She won a copy of Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey Treats for Kids.

Many thanks again, for those who participated.  I loved your entries and found it hard to pick, which is why I had to have it voted upon.  As a thank you, I'll be emailing you a recipe from the book.  Something mouth watering and scrumptious!

Check back often as I will have giveaways periodically.

Thanks again!

Monday, August 2, 2010

VOTING ENDS Monday 8/9/2010

Many thanks to those who participated and have a chance to win Sticky, Chewy, Messy Gooey Treats for Kids.

If I do this right there is a poll just to the right of this post for voting.  You can only vote once so be sure to forward to your family and friends and get them to vote too.  If you've been referred to this link by a friend, you are voting on which sentence best fits this blog's title and my posts.

Results will be announced Monday (8/9/2010) evening.

Good luck!