the times are changin'
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Monday, November 28, 2011

a quick note about whipped cream

i think real whipped cream is just so delightful. the first time i made it for myself, it felt like magic. for those of you who have not yet discovered the magic of making your own whipped cream, let me give you a recipe.

whipping cream

1. beat it until it's whipped cream

it really is that simple. you have to add sugar to it for it be sweet...but there's just a lot of possibilities. you can flavor it or color it very easily, too. it is so worth it because, at least to me, it tastes sooooo much better and richer. 

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

recipe #2: layered pumpkin pie toffee cheesecake

yes, that's right. two of the best things not combined but stacked on top of each other. this is not pumpkin cheesecake...this is cheesecake with pumpkin pie on top of it. the original recipe can be found here at our best bites. i tweaked it a little bit with the pumpkin pie because libby pumpkin pie is so good. i followed their instructions for the whipping cream instead of evaporated milk and 3 eggs instead of two since i'm no chemist and have no idea how that might affect things since this cheesecake bakes about an hour longer than a libby pumpkin pie. since eating on it over thanksgiving, i've decided that if i were to bake it again i would change the cheesecake to pumpkin pie ration from 1:1 to 1.5:.5....making it a lot more of a cheesecake. the pumpkin overpowered the cheesecake. i think i would also try it with marscapone cheese because it's stronger and just so dad gum good.

2 c cinnamon graham cracker crumbs (just short of 2 sleeves)
1/2 c (1 stick) butter, melted
2 8-oz packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
5 eggs, at room temperature
1 bag toffee bits
1 15-oz can pumpkin (or use homemade, it’s 1 3/4 cup)
3/4 c whipping cream
2/3 c sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp salt
Cool Whip or sweetened whipped cream for topping

1. heat oven to 300. spray 9" or 10" springform pan.
2. mix crumbs and butter.
3. press mixture into bottom of pan.
4. bake crust 15 minutes.
5. in large bowl beat cream cheese, 1/2 c sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
6. beat in 2 of the eggs.
7. stir in 1 cup of the toffee bits.
8. mix pumpkin, whipping cream, 2/3 cups sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt, and 3 eggs.
9. spread cheesecake mix over crust.
10. carefully pour the pumpkin mix over the cheesecake.
11. bake 2 hours (still at 300).
12. turn oven off; open oven door about 4 inches or so. leave cheesecake in oven for about 30 minutes. 
13. run spatula around the edge of pan. cool 30 minutes.
14. refrigerate at least 6 hours.
15. run spatula around edge of pan. remove from pan.
16. pipe with whipped cream or cool whip and top with toffee bits.

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rainy nights + old friends + earl grey

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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

jersey shore goes wilde

although at times inappropriate, this video series is hilarious. well played, boys. well played.
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sometimes the little things help

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

first recipe of the week: lil' promise pies

the recipe i found on pinterest called for kisses...but i decided to use dove promises a) because they were on sale b) because they are so much more delightful and c) because i knew i would have leftovers since i was just doing a trial run tonight rather than a major project (i.e. there would be leftover chocolate to savor)
here is the original recipe for your reference and for oh-so-better pictures. remember that wish list? i really want a good camera. i mean...i could have used a point and shoot or my iPod rather than my phone, but the fact remains that i want a higher quality camera.

1 refrigerated pie crust, thawed
10-15 individual chocolates
1 egg white + 1 tbsp water (whisk together)
2ish tbsp granulated suger
powder sugar to dust (optional)

1. preheat oven to 350
2. lay out pie crust on your working surface
3. place the chocolates out on crust
4. cut a circle of pie crust around the chocolate
 5. wrap the pie crust around the chocolate (make sure to pinch seams together well so it doesn't come undone while baking)
6. once you run out of space on the crust, ball it up and roll it back out just like when making cookies with cookie cutters
6. i placed the lil' pies on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. i put it on parchment paper simply to make it a cleaner process
7. brush the lil' pies with the egg white concoction
8. sprinkle them with the granulated sugar
9. bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown
10. let cool for 5 minutes, sprinkle with the powdered sugar if you so desire

these little guys are oh so delightful. they are so simple and yet so good. i mean, what's not to love? pie crust and chocolate. duh. it's a winner. and so easy to make.

linked to this partyLink Party

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recipes for this week

cinnamon roll pie crust, pumpkin pie toffee cheesecake, lemon-blueberry swirl pops, kiss pie, caramel in a can....yummmy lookin stuff. stay tuned for the recipes, process shots, and lessons learned...i am so excited about the fact that i only have to teach two days this week :)

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wish list

here are some new (and not so new) products that i'm hoping for in the next year or two:

What's awesome is that it comes with this software that automatically organizes the information. Quick and easy tracking of expenses. You can also use it for any other document, which just sounds awesome...because I tend to lose important papers no matter how hard I try to organize them.

There are SO MANY things you can do with this! I remember seeing something like it in hobby lobby once and thinking...umm what a waste of money. But then I saw tons of tutorials, etc. on all you could do with it. I am now a believer. (Although I still think it's really expensive...good thing they're apparently having a great black friday sale on their website.)

From all I've heard and read, a great camera for my budget constraints. It's still waaaaay too expensive at the moment, but maybe with some good holiday sales, saving up, etc., who knows?
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new photos...

some new photos posted on the photos page....check it out using the button to your right. here are some samples:

submitted to 
a content housewife 
for her brand spankin' new link party!

check it out!

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

new day here at the times are changin'

got a whole new look today. hope you enjoy :) it was much more enjoyable for me than lesson planning or grading papers! (except now i have a slight headache from being on the computer pretty much all day)

p.s. so thankful for the button tutorial from my dear friend at...
a content housewife
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silhouette giveaway

i really want to get one of these for christmas. except that i actually want it before christmas so i can use it for christmas pleeeeeeeease giveaway! thanks to all of these lovely bloggers for the giveaway! ends on monday, guys! get going to the sites!

1. Infarrantly Creative 2. The Idea Room 3.  Crap I’ve Made 4.  Eighteen25 5.  Shanty 2 Chic 6. Ucreate 7. I Heart Naptime 8. Our Best Bites 9. Prudent Baby 10. Little Miss Momma 11. Make It and Love It 12. Skip to my Lou 13.  Kara’s Party Ideas 14.  Craftaholics Anonymous 15. Tip Junkie 16. I Heart Organizing

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Friday, November 4, 2011

project #6: braided scarf

i found the tutorial on my pinterest. i didn't take any process shots because they are on the tutorial. the only thing i changed was that i made it a lot shorter so that it wasn't awkwardly hanging too low, and the colors i chose didn't work well wrapped twice. it took me the second half of glee and 2 episodes of the vampire diaries--for a frame of reference. i did mess up a step, though, and had to correct it. taking that into consideration, it should probably only take about an hour and a half--probably would be quicker if i weren't watching tv at the same time :)
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Wednesday, November 2, 2011


so bruce and i have been going through the friends series....and i didn't realize how seasons 8-10 would be so bad for my impatience with not being able to be at home full-time right now. it also doesn't help that i've been finding some very awesome homemaking blogs through pinterest these days, which is great for finding cheap homemade christmas gifts but bad for being content these days...

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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

nap time...

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