Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Happy birthday Anna!

 Today is my roommate Anna's birthday. We made cupcakes for her because we love her, we love to bake, and everyone loves cupcakes!

We went with a theme of BRIGHT colors! We found neon food coloring and candles, and the world's cutest cupcake liners. Decorating them was super fun (we compared the frosting to taffy and Play Dough and putty). We even went for the cupcakes on cupcakes effect :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Girl's night: VS Fashion Show

Had fun watching the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show tonight! Mary and Mandy came over to watch with me.

We ate sugar cookies...

...and drank hot chocolate with marshmallow-sprinkle stirrers (made by pushing a marshmallow onto a skewer and dipping the bottom of the marshmallow into milk or chocolate and then sprinkles).

It was fun watching the show and embracing sugary treats that we knew the models could only dream of!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Chevron nails

Whenever I get a free moment, I paint my nails. It's a comforting ritual for me, and nothing makes me happier than having the time to do something fun and elaborate. When I had time over Thanksgiving break, I did this on my toes:

Basically I used a lot of tape. That worked pretty well, but eventually I got frustrated with all the little sticky bits I had everywhere so I free-handed some too.

I got the inspiration from this cute manicure, which I saw here:

Pinned Image

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Matte topcoat

Finally got my essie matte about you! I really love the look on dark nails.

For this look I used a basecoat and two coats of OPI Russian Navy.

Then I added a coat of matte about you. The colors aren't really accurate (they are more navy blue than as black as they show up in the photos), but you get the idea. I love the look!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Mix and Match Chocolates

How cute are these mix-and-match chocolates? I think they would make very cute, personalized gifts.

Clearly I can't get food off my mind!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Decorating the Christmas tree

Now that Thanksgiving is over, we can all give in to the Christmas frenzy! I've been dying for it to be acceptable to embrace the Christmas spirit since before Halloween (shh!). We started with decorating the Christmas tree before my brother and I went back to school. 

Every year my mother gives us each an ornament. This year mine was a cupcake! Clearly she knows about my Pinterest obsession.

With some Christmas carols and some eggnog, we proceeded to decorate the Christmas tree. It started like this...

...and turned into this!

Happy holiday season!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Here is one of my mother's and my contributions to the family meal today:

I have been dying to try the apple braid since it hit Pinterest a bit ago, and this was my chance! I found the recipe here but I will walk through it with you below, since I changed it a tiny bit. 


Apple Filling
4 small Granny Smith apples
3 tbps granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp fresh lemon juice

2 1/2 c flour
1/4 c granulated sugar
1 tsp instant yeast
3/4 tsp salt
1 c warm water
2 1/4 tsp vegetable oil

1/3 cup powdered sugar
5 tsp whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg

First, we preheated the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and peeled and sliced three apples (we added the fourth later).

We added the sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice.

We baked the apples in an 8-inch square pan for about 15 minutes. While this was happening, we made the bread dough by mixing together all the ingredients and kneading it by hand. We rolled it out into a roughly rectangular shape.

We cut small slits roughly a third of the way into the dough, about an inch apart.

Once the apples were ready (they smelled AMAZING), we added them to the center of the dough.

Braiding was easier than I expected. It was basically just pulling strips from the side across the center in a downward motion, alternating sides, and tucking in the ends.

Although we didn't braid it on the pan, we definitely recommend it! It was hard to transport it from the board to the pan when it was full. Once we managed to place it on the pan roughly intact, we put it in the oven for about half an hour, or until it looked like the photo below.

While it was in the oven, we mixed the glaze by combining all the ingredients and whisking them together. 

We spread the glaze over the braid once it came out of the oven, and transferred it to a new pan on a rack to suspend it above the liquid that pools below. 

Seeing it just sitting there waiting to be eaten was the hardest part. I couldn't wait to cut into it! 

When I did it was very worth it, especially with a little vanilla ice cream on the side.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cranberry chutney

Getting all prepped for Thanksgiving tomorrow! 
Made cranberry chutney with my mother from a secret recipe passed down through our family.


PS: How cute is my little sous chef? Love him!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New shoes

Shopping with the Mama today. How great are these new shoes I got for the holiday season? I plan on debuting them on Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Girls night

Girls night!

 Mmmmm...sipping hot chocolate, decorating sugar cookies, and dishing about boys.

This is what I love about being home for holiday breaks!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Naan pizza

Back at home for the week of Thanksgiving break. Yay family, puppy, food, tv, and free time! Made it home just in time for dinner, which was personal pizzas with my parents and my brother. We used naan as the base, which worked very well. We broiled the naan for a few minutes to warm it, covered it with olive oil and garlic, and topped it with whatever we wanted. I chose mushrooms, green onions, gruyere and feta cheeses, and pepper. My brother the same, but sausage as well.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Jewelry for charity

As you are starting to delve into your holiday shopping, consider one of these great organizations that support impoverished women in Uganda. BeadforLife and 31 Bits help Ugandan women to market and sell hand-made jewelry and other products in order for them to become self-sufficient.

BeadforLife Logo

Handmade Beads

BeadforLife is a charity (from Colorado!) that aims for the women they work with to become self-sufficient and independent of the organization within 18 months. 

31 Bits is an organization that focuses on women displaced in Northern Uganda and provides training beyond business skills.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cream cheese squares

Tonight my roommate made this...

...and I thought I had died and gone to heaven. Absolutely amazing. She found the recipe here. So easy, so delicious, and the perfect way to celebrate the first night of a whole week off of school!

She used:

  • 2 (8 ounce) cans refrigerated crescent roll dough
  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup margarine, melted
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

She spread a layer of crescent roll dough on the bottom of the pan and covered it with the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla mixture.

This was followed by another layer of crescent roll dough, topped with the melted margarine, white sugar, and cinnamon. She baked it at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, and then we devoured it before I could even take a picture of it cut into squares. Oh well!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tomato tart

Tomato tart for dinner!

My modified recipe:

1 piece of whole wheat naan 
1 tbsp minced garlic
1tbsp olive oil
2 slices Swiss cheese
1 large tomato
1 tsp Italian seasoning herbs

I pre-heated the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and heated some the garlic and olive oil on the stove until the garlic started to brown. I spread the garlic and olive oil mixture on the naan.

I chopped the tomato into 1/8 inch thick slices,

which I layered on top of two slices of Swiss cheese on the naan.

Finally, I sprinkled some Italian seasoning on top,

and baked it for 25 minutes (until the tomatoes had cooked).

Then I ate it very quickly!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...