Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Cute and easy Christmas ornaments courtesy of Pinterest

Have you been on Pinterest yet? I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but if you haven't you're missing out. Further to that even, if you don't know what I'm talking about I can only assume that you have been living under a rock, sorry but it's true.

Never fear, let me get you up to speed-

This is Pinterest.

In order to join Pinterest, you need to a) request an invite or b) ask me nicely and I'll send you one. :)

Pinterest is a visual bookmarking site/social network all rolled up into one. The beauty of the social networking part is that other people have some pretty fab ideas. You either repin things you like and want to save in Pinterest itself OR you can pin things that you love from your favorite blogs and websites. This year, I thought it would be a pretty nifty idea to force ask nicely, that the mister join up so that I could make my Christmas list on there. I think the novelty was well received.

Picture those mood/design boards that we all see on those TLC/HGTV shows that we all know and love and pretend that you made one for Food, Home design/renovations, Things you want, Places you want to go, Books you want to read.... you get the idea, so yeah, picture that. That, my friends, is Pinterest.

I highly recommend that you check it out! (I've even added a button on the left side of the screen so you can find me)

Ok, so now for the real point to this post-

I was looking for a way to make traditional looking Christmas ornaments to fill my tree a little and found a pin for these;

via


Here is my interpretation-





What do you think? A little Krylon gold never hurt anyone, I say.



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Monday, December 19, 2011

Sometimes I get an overwhelming need...

...for 'stuff' of the sweet variety.

Let me show you what saved my sanity last night -


Ohhhh yeahhhh.

The mister made me dinner like he has been doing pretty much every night lately, and it was delicious. We had lobster with melted butter, and tomato salad. That all sounds pretty nice, right? Well it was! The problem arose when I got comfy on the couch after dinner to watch the survivor finale, as that was when I got that overwhelming need for rocky road. Let me first mention that I've never made rocky road before, but I assumed it was easy and was non-negotiable anyway. So I set off googling like crazy to find the easiest, and quickest, rocky road recipe. It was a huge success, in my humble opinion, because it was easy and just what I wanted. I thought that the nicest thing that I could do for you today was to share the recipe -

First, here is my disclaimer: I only *somewhat* followed the ingredients. As far as I was concerned, they were clearly suggestions! (See below for my 'adjustments')

Super-Easy Rocky Road Fudge

Prep: 10 Minutes
Cook: 10 Minutes
Ready in: 1 Hour 20 Minutes
Servings: 48 (...if they say so)

Ingredients:
- 1 (12 ounce) pkg of however much is left in the bag that hasn't been snacked on yet, semi-sweet chips
- 1 full package of dark chocolate (50%) chips
- A small sprinkle of white chocolate chips
- 1 (14 ounce) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
 
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups miniature marshmallows
- 1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped walnuts
Directions:
1.LINE 13 x 9-inch baking pan with foil; grease lightly.
2.MICROWAVE morsels and sweetened condensed milk in large, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100 percent) power for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Stir in vanilla extract. Fold in marshmallows and nuts.
3.PRESS mixture into prepared baking pan. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Lift from pan; remove foil. Cut into pieces.

You can find this recipe in it's original form here.

I hope you try it, it's simple and delicious!

Aren't the holidays great for treats?


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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Err, we should probably talk...

You may or may not have noticed that I've been slightly on the MIA side lately, and by lately I mean since September. Oops. Here's the thing, I had a project 365 mishap. At first I scrambled to try to come up with a solution to salvage it but I quickly realized that there was a lot of other stuff going on and my energy was slowly rapidly dwindling, so I admitted excruciating defeat.

So here is the story; when we returned from Martinique I was most certainly behind on the blog and it took me some time to catch up but all the while I kept taking my daily photos. Usually my photos were taken with the DSLR or at the very least our point and shoot but on certain occasions I took them on my Blackberry because; 1) I was out and didn't have one of the other cameras 2) it was more suitable for the subject or 3) it was just easier. The problem you see, is with those Blackberry shots. I still had an older Bold that had a trackball. I was warned when I first got it that any kind of cream or dirt, yadda, yadda, yadda, could muck it up and cause problems, sure, gotcha. Can you guess what happened to my trackball? Yup, it upped and quit on me one day this summer or fall (I honestly can't remember anymore). I followed all the instructions that I could find on how to disassemble my phone and clean it, ever so delicately, in order to get it back on it's feet but no, it didn't work. At some point between when my trackball quit and the last (of many) times that I disassembled my phone, I lost a bunch of blackberry pictures. :( You know the ones, the ones I needed for my project. Damn. Like I said before, I tried to salvage things by trying to piece together other things that I had taken but I would rather start over and do it properly, maybe, you know... if I have the time. So needless to say, I never did (or will) catch up.

The theoretical 'straw that broke the camel's back' in this case was when, through all my scrambling I realized that I didn't have a sliver of the energy I usually did (which, take it from me, isn't much to begin with). It's really difficult to find the motivation to continue (salvage) something that requires so much effort, when you are severely lacking in the 'awake' department. As much work as it was though, I did enjoy the project overall. I will do some incarnation of it again, and soon.

Fear not readers! I have done many things (through slits for eyes) over the last couple months and have taken a bunch of pictures (both on cameras AND on my new Bold :P), so I will have a bunch of things to share in the coming weeks, regardless of project 365's demise. Also, we're working on another project that will surely provide plenty of fodder for my little blog; we're working on our very own baby! Well I guess I mostly am, but the mister has been extremely supportive so he's been very busy too (because I am one hell of a handful)! We found out in August, which is why by September I was a zombie and sick to top it off, but that has since let up (the sick, not the zombie, though I do feel a bit more normal - whatever that means). We're over half way now, at 22 weeks and are on track for a due date of April 9th!

So that's that really. My full confessional about why I'm having to drop out of project 365 and my exciting news that will hopefully make up for it! I haven't been cooking as much lately (I'm being taken care of) but would like to get back into that very soon. Also, stay tuned over the next little bit when I'll get you up to speed on some projects that I've been working on since the summer. I've completed (or almost completed) a bunch of refinishing projects; a desk and chair for the spare bedroom, a dresser which is being used as a buffet in the dining room, and the most recent beast that was hogging the garage; a hutch that is also now in our dining room! The mister has said no more for awhile because I'm tired and the snow is here, so the garage is for the truck not spray painting!

 Forgive me?

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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Roses

6.13.11 : 164/365


More flowers from my garden... perfect.

Have I ever mentioned that I don't tend my garden? I try and make a 'good' attempt at planting everything and then the mister looks after it as I have what some may consider; two black thumbs. Also, I hate worms. Am I the only one that thinks they are one of the most vile creatures on the planet? Yes? Oh... ok then.

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Steak!

6.12.11 : 163/365

Look at that... makes you hungry, doesn't it?



Well, it's making me hungry, I know that much!
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Cottage Life

6.11.11 : 162/365

We don't have one unfortunately, though sometimes I really wish we did. I say this knowing full well that we are not overly cottage people. I mean sure, we enjoy going but don't usually miss the fact that we don't have one to go to... it's hard to explain.


Anyway, this here was a picture from the mister's boss' cottage that his entire team made their way up to on this semi-fine Saturday afternoon. It was windy as all get out but the cottage, food, and company were lovely!
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Happy Birthday Sam!

6.10.11 : 161/365

Well, that's what we said in June when we actually celebrated it!



It was a great night among friends as usual. There certainly is a lot to say for having people you love sharing their special days with... that ain't about to change!


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More Peonies

6.9.11 : 160/365

As if you wouldn't have expected it, they went from really pretty to really stunning!!



I wish these flowers lasted longer, they are insta-sunshine.
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Peonies

6.8.11 : 159/365

I got some gorgeous peonies this year and thankfully we didn't miss them while we were away.


I just love taking pictures of them when they are covered in dew drops, it just makes them prettier!
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The Aftermath

6.7.11 : 158/365

This is just proof that I spent a good chunk of time sorting and editing what felt like approximately one million vacation pictures... I'm a big cry baby! At least it's a good reason for it having taken me so long!!



What's my excuse for taking so long with these posts, you ask? Hmmm... I'll have to get back to you!
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Lilacs

6.6.11 : 157/365

Came home to these, aren't they pretty?


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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Day Eight - Heading for the airport

6.5.11 : 156/365



In an effort to make the most of our final day, we went on a final little tour prior to packing up the car for the trip to the airport and handing over the keys.

Joséphine de Beauharnais aka first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte, was born Marie Josèphe Rose Tascher de La Pagerie in Trois-Îlets, Martinique to a Wealthy, white Creole family who owned a sugar plantation. La Pagerie and the ruins of the sugar plantation were our destination during our last few hours of vacation.









In summary, our short week vacation was really quite fantastic. We got to visit several different, and gorgeous beaches, some beautiful natural sites (I've now climbed that volcano twice), and some real island culture. We had an amazing time, and truly cannot wait to return!

I hope this re-cap really showcased some of the islands natural beauty and appeal. I'd love to hear stories if anyone decides to go.

Thanks for sticking around, even if the re-cap did take forever! :)


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Day Seven - Our final full day

6.4.11 : 155/365




I know I shared the pictures of the village we were staying in, but as you can see that is my picture for this day since it was actually the day I took them... I'm all about getting this project, right.

This was just another day spent at the beach and walking around to visit. We did head back to Fort de France to pick up the things we weren't able to the first time at the market. I still didn't take a pictures, but that was apparently a ball I was destined to drop the whole time. We picked up a few things to bring back with us but there were a couple local things that I would love to introduce to you;

The first and most well known item was local and pure vanilla extract. You can get a big bottle of this for pretty cheap on most of the islands and it's delicious and aromatic.

The second is a West Indian/Creole curry blend called Colombo spice.
via

Colombo is orange in it's raw form but cooks up almost olive green in colour. This is definitely reminiscent of curry but different and so very delicious.

Another little 'something' that I would like to introduce you to, is our little buddy for the week we were there.





You see, in an effort to avoid any theft in the village we were in there were dogs that pretty much held down the fort. This guy here lived in the parking lot of our rental and while he snapped at us the first time we met, we all quickly became friends. He was such a sweetheart! We watched him take off after someone one day, so he certainly was no pushover... he took his job seriously.

There were other dogs around the village, and they were amazingly well behaved. They would walk along the sidewalks, safely cross the roads and just go about their business, not bothering a soul... they were amazing!

For this entry, I leave you with some scenery pictures that we took on our last evening there;









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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Day Six - A little piece of paradise

6.3.11 : 154/365



On the sixth day we made our way back to the beach that we had checked out earlier called 'Le Diament'. This name covers a town, beach and that rock you see up there in the distance. The rock itself is 2.5 miles off the coast and stands proudly out of the water for everyone to see. The beach is very long and the water is active and yet crystal clear. Thanks to the sheer length of the beach, large portions of it were virtually secluded - fantastic!

Here were the fruits of my shutter happy labours, it was just so beautiful;










I'm pretty sure this is where the crazy waves took the goggles clear off the mister's face!






When we got back to our village, there was a really pretty sunset;





What a relaxing day!
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