Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Christmas Cards.....

Mail...I have the greatest intentions when it comes to mail. My strong points are I buy cards, write a note inside, and even address them. What I am bad at is mailing them. There is no reasonable excuse for why I can't get them in the mail. This happened last year with Christmas cards....I mailed half the cards and then I ran out of stamps. Again...no reasonable excuse, other then not wanting to visit the post office.
The upside is I started this Christmas with 1/2 of my cards already addressed and ready to go (with last year pictures). This will help friends and family understand why half are getting last years picture and half are getting this years pictures. I am justifying this in my mind, because I love last years picture!

We had fun taking this years pictures....I think the neighbors were wondering what we were doing....jumping off of chairs in the wet field.






In case you were wondering what last years card's picture looked like....
Two different Christmas cards...
making their way to the mail (hopefully)
this Christmas season!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Fruit Slice Cookies

As I type the title I hear the kids giggling, because they decide the name for the cookie's. In case you are wondering why we would need a name for a recipe; it started today when we were shopping for cookie ingredients. At the grocery store the kids stopped, looked, stared and begged for candy from the giant wall of pound candy. The store has this giant wall of candy at the entrance of the store...I think it is meant to drive parents crazy.....to test our patience. All 3 kids love candy fruit slices....any flavor! Don't let the name full you...there is no fruit in this candy...only looks like fruit. The idea was born to make cookies with the candy instead of the traditional chocolate chip.....maybe we should title it Candy Fruit Slice Cookies?  Either way here is what we came up with....

Ingredients:
2 cups chopped candy slices
(we used only the red and green slices)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup butter (softened)
1 cup firmly packed brown-sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 TBSP milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 cups uncooked quick-cooking oats

Step 1:
Slice candy fruit to bite size pieces and toss with 1/4 cup of flour. Set aside.

Step 2:
Cream butter at medium speed with an electric mixer, gradually add sugars. Add eggs, milk, and vanilla; beat well.

Step 3:
In a medium bowl combine 2 cups flour, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, and nutmeg. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture; beat well. Stir in candy and oats.

Step 4:
Drop by rounded teaspoonful onto a greased baking sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 10 minutes or until lightly brown. Cool on wire rack.


Tip:
Did you know if you put your cookie dough in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes before baking it will keep your cookies from going flat when baking? Allowing the butter to chill before baking helps to prevent it from melting too fast and create a flat cookie!

We usually only bake one or two dozen at a time. We make dough balls with the rest of the dough and freeze for 10 minutes on a cookie sheet. They are placed in a labeled zip bag after they are frozen. Cookie dough ready for baking when needed....after school treat, surprise guests, or a midnight snack!

Cookies might be my favorite desert....I hope you join us at the NewlyWoodwards for some more great cookie recipes....and if you have a good recipe to share....link up! I know Kim would love for you to join in on the fun!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Picture Holder....

I spied this idea on pinterest and pinned into my DIY folder. (It doesn't seem I am completing as many projects as I am pinning.) This morning Tony happened to be sitting beside me as I was perusing the DIY folder. When I reached the fork picture holder, he briefly commented how cool this idea was.
He disappeared for awhile....

later to return with three fork picture holders....

Pretty cool.
These three went to the booth,
but I am thinking this will make
a great Xmas gift with the kids picture!

A trip to the thrift store today found us some more old forks!
The thrift store was the extent of our black Friday shopping...
How about you...did you find any good deals today?

We are partying this week at

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Under Construction....

Please pardon our mess...

(Image from our hallway project in 2010)

Relatively Unique is going to be under construction for bit....
while we have a little work done!

In case we don't have the opportunity....
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Moving-in update...

It has been two weeks since we moved into the booth.
Happy to say things are going well. It isn't where we
want it to be....but it is getting there!
Tony and I are learning we need to paint a little faster.
Here are a few of the painted pieces we took to the booth...


{sold}

This little guy was hard to part with. It looked so cute beside the sofa!

{sold}

And here is what it looked like this afternoon....
The girls and I put up the little Christmas tree today.

This week I plan to start decorating the booth for Christmas...
Burlap stockings...

And a few ornaments for the tree...

I haven't even started to think about decorating
our house for Christmas.
How about you?
Have you started to decorate for Christmas
or do you wait until after Christmas?


Friday, November 11, 2011

Suet Recipe....

Tony makes suet for the birds in the fall and winter. We are bird lovers and Tony has been working on training the chickadee's to eat from his hand. It is pretty amazing! A bird book sits by our back window, with binoculars close by....just in case that rare bird visits the feeder. It really is fun to see what birds migrate through our area and what birds stay through the winter.

Suet cakes provide a high protein and fat diet, which the birds need to help them sustain the winter elements.

Ingredients:
1 cup Peanut butter
1 cup shortening
1 cup flour
3 cup cornmeal
1 cup birdseed
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup chopped peanuts

Step 1:
Mix all ingredients together.

Step 2:
Place mixed ingredients in suet mold or any mold you would like to use. One batch  makes (3) 4x4 cakes.



Step 3:
Place outside for birds to enjoy.

Tony usually doubles the recipe and stores the extra cakes in the fridge.

Right now we are enjoying wood peckers, chickadee's, blue jays, cardinals, and an occasional squirrel. What birds are visiting your yard as they prepare for colder weather?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Homemade Pizza Dough...

My mom went back to work full time when I was in middle school and she started the tradition of pizza night every Friday. It gave her a break from cooking and was a great way to start off the weekend. We have continued this tradition in our home and I love not having to worry about what is for dinner on Friday's.

Gram Kay's homemade pizza dough was a family tradition in Tony's family. It was the best. We loved when she traveled from Philadelphia to visit. She was a wonderful Italian cook and it was a special treat for everyone when she made her homemade pizza's. Not only was the dough homemade, but the sauce was from scratch. She was awesome!

Even though Friday night pizza is a favorite in our home, not everyone likes the same toppings. I am tired of trying to remember who picked the pizza last week and whose turn it was this week. Remember, this was to be a fun night! We decided to combine the two traditions and test out making our own pizza dough. If it worked it would be a win win for everyone.

Tony had a recipe in his tool box of recipes. We don't know if it is Gram's, from his days at CIA, or when he worked in Philadelphia. Either way, it is a homemade pizza dough recipe and we decided to give it a try....


Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups warm water (100-110 degrees F)
2 1/2 teaspoons rapid-rise yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon olive oil
4-5 cups flour

Step 1:
Spray pizza pan with non-stick cooking spray

Step 2:
Using a mixer bowl, hand whisk water and yeast. Let stand 2-3 minutes to dissolve yeast. Whisk in sugar, salt and oil and 2 cups flour.

Step 3:
Using dough hook on lowest speed, knead dough with the mixer. Slowly add remaining flour. Continue to add flour and knead until dough forms into a soft elastic ball.

Step 4:
Remove dough hook and spray dough with non-stick cooking spray.  Cover the entire mixer and bowl. Let rise until double in size (about 90 minutes).

Step 5:
Deflate dough and roll dough to desired size on a floured surface. Add desired toppings. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes for a large pizza and 7-10 minutes for personal pizza's.

This was a huge hit! Lil Tony and Sarah helped me make the dough and want to try to make it on their own this Friday! Hurray! I think we have started a new tradition!

How about you....any favorite dinner traditions in your home?

We hope you joining us at;
 Designs by Gollum for Foodie Friday
Friday's Unfolded at Stuff and Nonsense
Fingerprints on the fridge

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sarah's Shop...

My little scientist were busy in the lab on Saturday....
(Aren't you loving those paper shades...they have only been up for a year!)

They gathered all the perfumes and body mists they could find.....

And started to create a new perfume scent....
Or maybe I should say a few new scents to try! Some actually smelled good. Each cup was labeled with a name and had a q-tip for testing. The cash register was set up and ready for a sale...$1.00 per cup. It was a good thing...after this little experiment it looked like I was in need of new scent...where else could I get a cup full for a buck!

I also learned a drum makes a good clothing catcher...who knew?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Re-opening....

We are excited to re-open the booth at the Olde Factory. November 1st is the official day. That would be yesterday...but we plan to move in this weekend! Excitement is an understatement! For Tony and I, letting go of the booth last year opened our eyes to realize how much we really loved it. Last weekend, when Tsh talked about living in your element (the place where your skills and passion collide) I got it! It feels good to be back!

This table and chairs have become a favorite of mine. I was trying to figure our where they might fit in the house, but Tony reminded me that was not the purpose of them! Stephanie was with me when I purchased them...can you believe how they turned out?


The chairs started out black and had a padded seat.
What a wonderful surprise under the padding.
In perfect condition....

The only before picture of the table is of it upside down in the garage.
Can you see its legs?

After some sanding and paint....
Table: Sherwin and Williams special mix white blend
(originally mixed by our builder for the house trim)
Chairs: Valspar Metropolis
Table and Chairs will be available at The Olde Factory
on November 5th.

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