Sunday, October 30, 2011

It is at the edge of the petal that love waits...

William Carlos Williams

While the Northeast is having "Snowtober," our reward for a punishingly hot summer (how many days in a row of 100+ temperatures?) is the abundant blossoming of our roses right now. I am enjoying the blooms scattered in vases around the house. And the petals from "Scentimental" - alas, pretty as it looks at first, it tends to drop its petals within 24 hours. But I can still enjoy the colors and patterns as petals in a pretty dish!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Upcoming Jo-Ann's Pattern Sales

October 30/November 5 - McCall's $1.29

Veterans' Day Sale - November 6/12
Simplicity patterns 5/$5

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

This week - Celestial Seasonings Blueberry Breeze Green Tea

Cost: Around $2.50 I'm pretty sure I bought it at Super Target. Or Kroger.

Number of teabags: 20

Caffeine: No

Type of tea: Green

Steeping time: 4 minutes

Add ins: A teaspoonful of honey

Teabag fragrance: Blueberry!

Ingredients: Green tea, natural blueberry flavor with other natural flavors, and blueberries.

Opinion: I've been drinking this hot, but I'm certain it would be great iced, too. I bought this awhile back and found the box in the back of my pantry. Have I been missing out! I especially like and appreciate the blueberries' and the green tea's antioxidant boost. A little bit of honey makes it perfect - taste and health-wise. I think the box design is pretty, too

I do miss Celestial Seasonings' sayings on their boxes...when did they stop doing that?

Rating: 4.25

Monday, October 24, 2011

Tickled Pink (and purple)!

"Barbeque" Rosemary - Yes, it does smell like BBQ sauce! It will grow to 30"-42" tall

"Super Parfait Strawberry" dianthus. Beautiful blooms!

I was so very, very happy to grab these two "Amazon Neon Duo" dianthus in cherry and purple. Another Place in Time was one of the test nurseries last year. They planted them alongside the front and they were absolute showstoppers. Hopefully mine will also reach over 24" tall.

Family portrait of a happy shopping day -- The center flowers are 21st Century Blue and Salmon Phlox. And upper left corner is Lemon thyme - very lemony!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sandra Betzina Power Sewing Tips

I was trying to find the her Fall/Winter Fashion Forecast and came across this link on her webpage. There are some helpful and even new to me sewing tips here! Check it out under the What's New tab.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Netflix Stars - Manna From Heaven

3.25 - Not bad, a fun indie. In fact, my husband saw it not too long ago on the IFC channel. Set in Buffalo, NY, this features a star-blingy cast including Shirley Jones, Cloris Leachman, Louise Fletcher, Wendie Malick, Jill Eikenberry, Shelley Duvall...Ursula Burton who was part of the production company with her sisters. Quirky characters, displaying the true human-ness of us all.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

This week - Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf English Rose

Cost: $8.95

Number of teabags: 20

Caffeine: Yes

Type of tea: Ceylon Black
Steeping time: 5 minutes

Add ins: I tried this as a hot latte in the Austin (South Lamar) store. And then at home with a little bit of fat free condensed milk. I'll try it again with my fat-free vanilla powder.

Teabag fragrance: Milk chocolate-rose

Ingredients: Ceylon black tea, rose petals, tea blossoms, natural flavors.

Opinion: Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf 2011 Limited Edition National Breast Cancer Foundation tea (last year's was the Chocolate Rose). I think this one still kept the slight rose scent, but umped up the chocolate - MILK CHOCOLATE! A nice switchup from all the dark chocolate out there. Sweetly smooth and delicious. Even the teabag is pretty!

Rating: 4

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I finally got a red milkweed (Asclepia curassavica) I've had the yellow ones for years. Don't the yellow parts look like tiny animal faces?!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Penzeys spice and coupon deal!

I just received the Thanksgiving Penzeys catalog issue. Not only is there a great coupon deal -- "Kind Heart Gift Box", but a new seasoning, "33rd & Galena Chicken and Pork Rub". Which just so happens to be included in that FREE gift box.

The coupon code is 82440C. You get 1/4 cup jars of 33rd & Galena, Forward, Mural of Flavor and Arizona Dreaming. A $7.95 value.

And this is their Thanksgiving issue, of course filled with lots of yummy recipes. The Sweet Potato Bread tops my To-Try List!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

I caught (haha) the last half of "Catch and Release", which I had Netflix'd awhile back. The movie was still pretty lame, but the soundtrack pretty good. This time I watched with my new phone with the Shazam app. "Soul Meets Body" is a good swimming song. I also thought Joshua Radin's haunting, "What If You" was an appropriate addition to the soundtrack.

Death Cab for Cutie - "Soul Meets Body" - 3:50

Sunday, October 16, 2011

To Do List!

I love that Plain White T's song, "1, 2, 3, 4" Be sure to check out the video, so cute! I even bought it on iTunes.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Plum-Blueberry Upside-Down Cake

The Plum Blueberry Upside Down Cake from Everyday Food #85 September 2011 - Pretty and yummy, too!

***I made a few changes -- I used a glass pie plate and followed the directions. I was happy to discover it popped right out/upside down perfectly! *I also cut back the butter in the batter by 1 1/2 tablespoons. Every little bit helps! And it did not have a big impact on the flavor and result.

Since I was using glass, I reduced the oven from 375 to 350. I started checking at 41 minutes and added five minutes more. Then used the high speed/fan/convection setting for 3 minutes. Perfect!

*10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 large firm but ripe black plum, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
1 1/2 cups blueberries (7 ounces)
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to *375 degrees. Lightly butter an *8-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep); line bottom with parchment paper. Melt 2 tablespoons butter and pour into pan; swirl to coat paper. Sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar evenly over butter. Arrange plum evenly in pan, then add blueberries, filling in any gaps.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 8 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup brown sugar on high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in egg, egg white, and orange zest until combined. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. With mixer on low, beat flour mixture into butter mixture until combined. Beat in buttermilk and vanilla until smooth.
Transfer batter to pan. Tap pan firmly on counter several times to remove air bubbles; smooth top.
Bake until cake is deep golden brown, juices are bubbling around edge, and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about *45 minutes, rotating pan halfway through. Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack, 1 hour. Run a knife around edge of pan and invert cake onto a serving plate. Serve warm or at room temperature. (Store, covered, at room temperature, up to 2 days.)
Note --
Flavorful fresh fruit will give you a sweet, jamlike layer on top of this cake. Make sure the fruit is packed snugly in the pan; it will shrink and lose volume as it bakes.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Hello Kitty Pumpkin

Happy Hello Kitty Halloween!

Step 1 - Outline and white paint. While still wet, sprinkle white irridescent glitter!

Step 2 - Paint red bow and yellow nose. Add more glitter! Red and Gold!

Step 3 - Paint black eyes and whiskers. Add, you guesed it - black glitter!

Step 4- Pink paint around face and rest of pumpkin. Don't forget lots of pink glitter!!

---The glitter I used was from Art-C. Michael's had it on clearance for $2.49. (Hobby Lobby also carries them, too - around $5. Which is still a great deal considering the cool colors they have, and you can use that 40% coupon when it appears.) Three cute little .28 ounce cork-topped glass bottles with a twine string around the top. It is really designated for mixed media/ATC Artist Trading Cards, but the fine glitter worked just fine on a pumpkin! I originally bought them not only to ultimately use, but display a line of them all in a row for something pretty and sparkly to look at in my sewing room.

---The paints were Apple Barrel Gloss White 20621, Dandelion 20646, Real Red 20636 and Pink Blush 20631. The black was Folk Art Metallic Sequin Black 661.

---This post was also featured in Thirty Handmade Days and Creative Every Day and is also on Google Images.

Be sure to check out this year's pumpkin featuring Chococat!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

Cost: $3.29 at Kroger

Number of teabags: 20

Caffeine: Yes

Type of tea: Black

Steeping time: 5 minutes

Add ins: A little bit of fat free condensed milk

Teabag fragrance: Ginger-Cinnamon

Ingredients: Assam black tea, ground--ginger root, clove bud, cardamon seed, Cassia (cinnamon) bark, anise seed

Opinion: I liked the idea of anise seed in a chai, and I also had liked Oregon Chai's Dreamscape Herbal Chai. (click here for review). Now I like both! Similar, but just different enough to be able to enjoy for different moods and different times of the day.

Rating: 4

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

The Go-Go's - "Head Over Heels" - 3:38

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Upcoming Jo-Ann's Pattern Sales

October 16/22 - Moonlight Madness
99 cent McCall's
50% off all thread -includes multipacks!

October 27/29
$1.99 Butterick
$3.99 Vogue

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Mirror Mirror - The video!

There are over 100 mirrors dancing in the sunlight. Plus a leftover Easter egg!

Here's the link to the instructions in the earlier post.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Upcoming Jo-Ann's Pattern Sales

Columbus Day Sale - October 7/10
99 cent Simplicity

3-Day Pattern Sale - October 13/15
$1.99 Butterick
$3.99 Vogue
99 cent McCall's