Saturday, October 25, 2008

Saucy's Zombie Jar Swap

I just participated in my first ever swap! Which reminds me:

Tan of Enchantments and Giggles: If you are reading this and haven't received the package I sent you, stop reading now! I don't want you to see the goodies before they arrive!

Saucy of Bloggedy Blog Blog hosted the Zombie Jar Swap, a spin on the faerie jars that are flying around many creative blogs but with a Halloween twist. As you may have guessed I was partnered with Tan of Enchantments and Giggles. Here's what I sent her!

I caught this little pumpkin fellow and bottled up some of Halloween night complete with bats, stars and a man in the moon to keep him company.

I have to praise my wonderful hubby here. He was so supportive through this whole project with advice when I needed it and encouragement to get a move on as the deadline loomed close. Also he is solely responsible for the oh-so-cute placement of my pumpkin fellow's limbs! What I came up with before this = not oh-so-cute. I was at a loss, so I took this little guy to him and hubs made a little bend here and an arm placement there and voila! My hubs is the best ev-ah.

This tag explains it all:

What I sent:
-Jar full of pumpkin fellow
-Orange bucket with black cat on a fence scene
-Bat shaped Halloween mask
-Sparkly black cat ornament
-Bag of teeny rafia pumpkins (pumpkin fellow's relatives)
-Chocolate covered orange marshmallow pumpkins (Tan loves those)
-Handmade Boo banner

I'm so proud of this banner! I made it all by myself! (And I do believe it was somewhere around 4 am when I took these pictures...I was so excited about all this stuff I couldn't make myself stop and go to bed!)
Tan and I found we share an undying love for Etsy, the online marketplace for all things handmade. I actually got the sweet bats fluttering around in the jar from the shop Duct Tape and Denim. She's got some on sale right now, not to mention bunches of other cute things.

If you check out Tan's blog you'll see she mentions that she injured her neck and back several weeks ago and just found out from her doctor that she has 6-8 more weeks of treatments. Any of you reading who pray, please pray and ask God for a speedy and complete recovery for Tan!
Thank you, Saucy, for a great swap! I enjoyed stretching my creative muscles!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

TWD: Pumpkin muffins

Note: You only have until October 31 to join the baking odyssey! Buy the book, go sign up and show us your food!

I was coming off a TWD slump and needed something to get me back in the swing...enter: Pumpkin Muffins. Simple, quick, yummy. Thank you, Dorie!

Things started pretty normally, but then the batter got weirdly grainy once the eggs were added in.

But once the dry ingredients/raisins (I used dark raisins, by the way)/walnuts were added in things got back to normal.

And turned into these!

My only teensy weensy complaint would be that they seemed a tad dry even though I checked them a couple minutes before the lowest cooking time Dorie listed. My oven must run hot or something...I'll just have to check sooner in the future.

Dorie knows what she's talking about (imagine that) when she says to split, toast and add marmalade...very niiiice.

Go make these muffins! They're like little chunks of fall!

Just cuz, take a look at that turtle with her legs stretched out...have you ever seen such?

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Thanksgiving Wish

I am very excited to be at the point in the season that we are right now. I enjoy having my Halloween decorations up and still seeing Halloween items in the stores and watching like a hawk as they put those things on sale. But this weekend I went to The Mall and got sucked right in to Williams-Sonoma. And now I have a bad case of the I-wants...

Like this...I think I stopped breathing when I saw this. Its HUGE! And I'm not even sure there'd be room to actually eat at the table if this was in the middle of it...but I NEED it.

This, too

And one of these for good measure

And definitely some of these. Never know when you might need a holiday themed towel.

And while we're at it, just go ahead and toss these in...hey, I could actually get away with those as a Halloween-y item!
Who does one write letters to for Thanksgiving gift requests?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Pink Saturday!

I am so excited about today's pink stuff! I live in Abbeville, SC where there is a wonderful little place called Trinity Street Market & Gallery run by the dynamic duo of Kristin and Pat. They feature the work of over 30 regional artists, and there is always something new and inspiring to see each time I stop by.

They just finished a show with an artist who signs her works with the name Pink Earth; does it get any more Pink Saturday than that??

Kristin and Pat generously let me come in and take me take pictures of Pink Earth's (real name: Jeanette Ross) work to my heart's content; I told them I had some ladies who needed to see these paintings!

This is called Humble Beacon, and it shows part of Trinity Episcopal Church just down the street from the gallery. Yes, this 145 year old church is actually pink! It is not quite this bright; Jeanette uses a distinctive color palette in her works that is heavy on pinks, purples and aquas. I'll show you actual photographs of the church in an upcoming episode of Pink Saturday.

Here we see part of Trinity Street. That's the ice cream parlor on the right side with the aqua beams and banisters (best potato salad ever). The gallery is right across the street, but not shown in this painting. Don't you just love that pink church!

Just can't get enough...its beautiful inside, too.

The Rough House has been an Abbeville institution for over 75 years (back in the day, women weren't even allowed in here). They have a little dance floor called the Side Pocket and one Friday a month a DJ comes in to play beach music for all the shag dancers. We stop by their lunch counter so my husband can get his hotdog/moon pie/RC Cola fix every once in a while.

Even hot dog joints can benefit from a little pink.

Yummy pink bricks. The Rough House is actually not pink, but it's fun to pretend.

Here we see the Abbeville square and some excellent use of pink. I used to live in an apartment overlooking this square. If the square were actually pink, I don't think I ever would have moved.

One more view of the square; the building in the background is the courthouse where my husband and I got our marriage license.

Lovin' it, Jeanette.

More of our favorite color on the postcard advertising the show.

I hope you enjoyed the art! This only scratched the surface of the pink there is to be found throughout the Trinity Street Market & Gallery; hopefully I can go back and collect more pink specimens to share with you. Click here if you'd like to visit the gallery's site.

Happy Pink Saturday and thanks for dropping by!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Late Pink Saturday!

Hubs and I went to Savannah, Georgia for our first anniversary. One evening we had a very elegant (and yummy!) dinner at the Olde Pink House restaurant. It was too dark to get a picture that night, but before we left town we went back and snagged a nice man passing by to take our picture. So nice of him...the hazard of having someone take your picture is that you are not behind the camera making sure everything gets in. I didn't have the heart to tell him I wanted more of the house. Whole thing or not, you can definitely tell this is one Pink House! If you get to Savannah I definitely recommend a swanky dinner at the Olde Pink House.
NOTE 10/15/08: I failed to say that this anniversary trip was in May of 2006.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Prettying Up My Pumpkin!

Thanks to Jen at Sanctuary Arts at Home for hosting the Pretty Your Pumpkin event!

Finally here is my pretty pumpkin! First I have to thank my husband for his great help in making my pumpkin the prettiest it could be. Glitter doesn't like staying inside the lines (which is one reason we love it, right??) so there was a fine layer of orange glitter over the entire thing when I was done. As I pondered how I was ever going to get that extra glitter dust off, he lept into action.

Extra long extension cord? (for taking the party outside) Check!
Hair dryer? Check!
Small paint brush? Check!

And he proceeded to ever so gently blast away those errant bits of sparkly-ness. Thanks, babe!

Here's what I started with:

Check out that price!

And for the main event...Ta-da!

You can't really tell from the picture, but that stem is all sparkley black and so pretty!

It ain't perfect, but boy is it pretty!

Here's a little bit of my Halloween decor. I'll have to show some close-ups in another post.

But for now I'll leave you with this guy...he's got his slightly droopy eye on you.

Original post-10/8/08:

Oooo, time got the best of me, and I'll have to finish my post after work today, but here's a little sneaky peek to entice you to come back and see my pretty pumpkin!

Monday, October 6, 2008

TWD: Caramel Peanut-Topped Brownie Cake

Caramel, peanuts, cakes that are brownie-like: heaven!! My experience with it all: not heaven :( I had such high hopes for this cake. The picture in the book was gorgeous, and I couldn't wait for that first piece.

It was all so promising in the beginning what with the buttered and floured pan...

And the sugar and eggs...

And look how creamy and luscious it is with all those dry bits mixed in. Wait...crap! I mixed it out of order!! Forgot to mix in the chocolate first! This means that the dry ingredients will be mixed too much! Shoot!!!

It sure is pretty though. Ah, well we'll hope for the best.

In the meantime let's tackle this caramel business. 5 minutes came and went...10 minutes came and went...15 minutes came and went...and then 15 minutes 30 seconds came, and I happened to sit down for approximately 10 seconds to eat a sandwich for goodness sakes and suddenly the caramel was all, "Oh, well you've missed your chance my friend. I am now officially much too amber".
I was worried...but I decided to go ahead with it just in case the combo of the pretty but mixed out of order cake and the possibly burnt caramel would turn into magic.

Ooo-whee! That's a pretty cake! My cake did sink in the middle as it cooled, but Dorie warned us of that, so I was not alarmed.
Upon tasting I was a tad disappointed. The cake was a bit dry which I was sure was due to my mixing error, but I did read that some of you other TWD-ers also ended up with dry cake. And to me that caramel does taste a bit on the toasty side, though it's not a hardship to eat it with the cake. I really want to take another crack at this cake and do everything just right because I believe this could be one of the most delicious cakes I've ever had.
Meanwhile, Abby did her glamour thing in the sunshine...tell me turtles don't smile.

What a ham...

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Pink Saturday

Pink Saturday! Today I'm sharing a couple gorgeous items from Pom Pom Interiors in Los Angeles, CA. I live in South Carolina but went to LA for business in June and managed to snag a day of sightseeing before flying back home.

I was in pink/white/seashell/shabby chic/French flair HEAVEN during my visit, nay my pilgrimage, to Pom Pom.

This was one of the first things I saw, and it was SO hard not to lay down the serious money it would have taken to make it mine.

But you know I couldn't leave without taking some of that delicious pink home with me!

You can see more of Pom Pom as the February 2007 Cottage of the Month at the Old Painted Cottage; click here for more pink and some linen and silver, a little furniture...I'm telling you, the place is heaven.