Saturday, March 27, 2010

Raising a Foodie

I have been cooking up a storm today, along with enjoying this beautiful weather we are having. Busy, busy!
Ever since Elise was first introduced to real food (post breast milk/formula days) I have tried to instill good eating habits. As you know, this is not an easy thing to do when the picky eater comes to dinner! A long while back I posted on what I call the super vegetable mix from Healthy Times Baby Food. To this day she still requests this wonder puree and will sit and eat a a whole bowl like it's ice cream. I have been pretty lucky that she loves veggies so much, but there are still challenges. My go to books for a while were the Deceptively Delicious cookbook and Cooking for Baby, wholesome, homemade, delicious. These two books are so helpful in starting to raise a foodie, but now we want to breakdown the deception and stop hiding the veggies. So after our Whoopie Pie extravaganza this morning, and a long nap, we had a little cooking demo for dinner. She loves eggs, asparagus and cheese, so I thought we would make a frittata using these ingrediants, and introduce two new items. Enter the red bell pepper and fresh dill! I brought out all the tools and ingredients and set up on the kitchen island. Elise was perched on a bar stool chomping on asparagus spears as I showed her what everything was. She cracked eggs (yes it was extremely messy!), did a  little stirring , and before we knew it dinner was served! Here is the finished product.
 Elise loved it!

Thank you Cha Cha!

I was the lucky winner of one of Cha Cha's fun giveaways over at Sit Relax and Read! Above is the beautiful apron she made. I love my new apron and had fun breaking it in, making my first batch of Whoopie Pies! Thank you Cha Cha!

Making Whoopie!

We spent our Saturday morning making Whoopie Pies! I had no idea what these were until last Saturday's visit to Sur La Table. The sweet lady behind the counter introduced me to their special of the day, the Whoopie Pie pan! Now, I am not by any means a baker. In fact everything I try to bake turns out slightly runny, dry, burnt, you name it! I have mastered two recipes in my time. One is the giant cookie cake, and second oatmeal cookies. For me to buy this pan and give it a try was huge! Besides how could I resist, look at this little pan with the delicious photos of perfect little whoopie pies.

So here we are a week after the big baking purchase and I am all set to make Whoopie!
(following the recipe on the back of the pan by Wilton

Whoopie Pie Ingredients
1/2 cup (1stick) butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk

In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and vanilla; beat until well combined.
In another bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add half the dry ingredients into the butter mixture and mix on low speed.
When dry ingredients are almost incorporated, stop the mixer and add the buttermilk. Continue to mix on low speed until all ingredients are almost incorporated. Stop the mixer and add the remaining dry ingredients. Mix on low until just combined.
Spoon 2 tablespoons of batter into each cavity (of the baking pan); spread batter to the edges. Cavity should be about 2/3 full.
Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the top of the cake springs back when touched. Allow cakes to cool in pan 8 minutes. Cool completely before filling. To assemble pies spread filling on one cake and sandwich with another cake.

Pie Filling Ingredients
 6 tablespoons butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 jar marshmallow creme (about 7 oz)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In large bowl, beat butter with electric mixer until creamy. Add sugar and salt to the butter; mix well. Add marshmallow creme and vanilla; blend well. Use immediately to fill Whoopie Pies or refrigerate covered up to 1 week.

(makes 12 Whoopie Pies)

 Here is my finished product! Not to shabby for my first Whoopie Pie!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Chew on this

What's in your cookie jar? If you are like me the answer is nothing, because cookies never stay around long enough to make it into the jar around here! Fortunatly for the waistline, today's post is not about cookies. The delightful morsel I am thinking of is not eatable, but offers more sweetness than any old cookie, its scripture! By filling our "cookie jar" with scripture, we can reach in and graze on scripture morsels throughout the day. Meditating on positive truths really lifts my mood and keeps me on track.
These truths have filled my "cookie jar" this week:
  • Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
  • The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Galatians 5:22
  • Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
  • No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. 1 Corinthians 10:13

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Fling Painting Project

Our entryway needed a new look, so I put paintbrush to canvas and created this! The above photo is the canvas all taped up and ready to paint. Below is the finished product!
View from the dinning room.

Next on the to do list! 
We found this headboard at a local antique mall. With a little paint, it will make the perfect big girl bed for Elise! Stay tuned for the final result!
Happy Spring!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Tea for Two

I have seen a ton of wooden play food sets, but nothing like this Two Tiered Play Pastry Tray. How cute would this be for tea time?! 
Made from recycled milk jugs, the Eco Friendly Tea Set is built to last. 
A tea party is not complete without a cute party dress. Traced Twirls Dress for mommy and Mini Boden Embroidered Dress for mini.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tidy Up in Style

"Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, it's time to do your share."
This little song can be heard most everyday in our house, along with many other silly songs. It is our way of making clean up time fun.

Hand Painted Flour Sack Towels, paired with DeLovely dish gloves may help get the dishes done with a little more style.

Neat and tidy with a cute apron from Anthropologie

Have you seen this sock? The Missing Sock Bucket is the perfect place for all those socks that went in as pairs and came out single!

Top it all off with the heavenly blend of amaretto, almond, vanilla and cinnamon found in Maggies signature fragrance.This is one of my all time favorites!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Soulful Sunday

We spent some time in the great outdoors today. The weather was perfect! While hubby fixed up the front flowerbed, Elise and I went on an adventure. Above is a photo of her finds. She was so proud of her bouquet of flowers and the acorns had to have their "hats", aka: the acorn tops. It is refreshing watching her explore the world around her. To take time and really "stop and smell the roses", so to speak.
While on our adventure, we talked about how God made the beautiful world. She was so excited when I would ask, "who made the flowers, acorns...?" Her answer every time was "GOD!", after which I would cheer "YAY, thank you God!" Little moments like this can really make a giant impact on her little faith foundation.

"Everything God made was very good" (Genesis 1:31)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Owl about Etsy Finds

I did a little Owl watching at Etsy today and found a few items to hoot about!
These cookies look to good to eat, but I could nibble on a few!

Move over piggy bank and hello Owl! Save your pennies for a rainy day in this bright sunny little owl bank.

Keep the ICK away in this wet proof zip bag.

Bringing the outdoors in. This cute little owl could find a spot somewhere on my wall!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Soulful Sunday

Discovering God's promises together. 

 (three months prego with Elise in this photo)

Make a date with hubby to sit a talk about what you have learned in God's word throughout the week. 
We have started reading a devotions for couples book. Our goal is to meet at least once in the week and talk about what we have learned. This week we learned the importance of keeping each other accountable for our daily walk with God. Not only do we benefit as individuals, but our communication increases too. 
The stand out verse was Isaiah 33:6 "He will be the stability of your times". It is so easy to let time with God be pushed aside by the daily grind, until life gets complicated, and we grasp at His word for comfort and answers. Wouldn't it be easier to have bank of knowledge in God's word to provide stability now and for the future?

"prepare in our hearts those Scriptures that will give us everlasting promises."

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Good Morning to You!

"Good morning to you, good morning to you, we're all in our places with sunshining faces! This is the way to start a new day!" Mom would sing this song to us in the mornings, especially school mornings. It was a fun way to start the day.
This morning I was greeted by a handsome hubby, breakfast in bed, Dave Mathews Band (playing in the background via XM), and a happy smiley little girl. Hubby was so sweet to give me a restful morning. I got to sleep in until 8:00am! That was oh so nice, considering my week days start at 5:15am (as long as the snooze it not hit various times). Our sweet girl Elise was so excited! After she and hubby presented the breakfast, she peered in on me from our living room. She had a giant smile, especially when I would "catch" her looking in on me. What a fun morning!
Next stop on today's list is a trip to the hardware store! I had a wave of DIY inspiration after Kellie's Wednesday post. Check out her blog This Blessed Nest, you'll be glad you did!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Play With Your Food!

Do you remember the Wooly Willy toy?
By using a magnetic pen, you could move the metal shavings around, to form various hair styles on Wooly Willy's face. 

Well, if you like this toy, take a look at this plate found at Uncommon Goods!
 Got to love the mac and cheese beard!