Thursday, October 31, 2013

Super yummy cupcakes..... and a little peek at my grocery list!

One needs a really good reason to put up a blog post after several years right? Well I can't think of a better on than cupcakes! 

As I was typing this up though I did notice that I sat my cupcake on my grocery list and the only things visible are vanilla, bacon, cheddar, cream and butter. Ummmm... I might have just figured out why my pants are so tight, not that I'm gonna change that list!

So, last night I made these super delicious and ever so seasonal cupcakes for my love to take to work. These are my most requested cupcakes, with the exception of the triple lemon cupcakes that my friend Candy loves! They are soooooo good and really great with a cup of coffee for breakfast.

Did I say breakfast?

I meant dessert of course!

Or breakfast, but hey they have pumpkin in them, so they are good for you! They are not hard to make, but do have some not so common ingredients in the extract mix. I'm posting the recipe here for my friends that saw this picture on Facebook this morning and wanted it. So Deborah and Vanessa, this one's for you!

Pumpkin Cupcakes 
with Chai Buttercream Frosting


Chai Extract

Combine in a saucepan
Tea out of 4 chai tea bags
4 small cinnamon sticks, crushed a little
1” fresh ginger, peeled and cut up
10 cloves
8-10 allspice berries, crack them a little
4-5 cardamom pods, cracked a little
3 cups water
Boil while mixing a baking cupcakes until it has evaporated to about 1/3 cup. Strain and cool.

Pumpkin Cupcakes

Makes approx. 32  cupcakes
2 c. Sugar
2 t. Baking Powder
2 t. Cinnamon
¼ t. Cardamom
½  t. Salt
2 ½ c. Flour
2 t. Baking Soda
2 c. Pumpkin
3 Eggs
1 c. Oil
Combine all dry ingredients and sift well!! (Beware of baking soda lumps!) Add wet ingredients and mix well. Fill cupcake liners approx. 2/3 full and bake at 350 until toothpick comes out clean, about 15 min. Cool on wire rack for about 10 min. then dump out of pan to continue to cool completely before icing.

Chai Buttercream Frosting

1 c. Butter, softened ( you can use all butter, but the texture is better and more stable with the crisco)
½  c. Crisco (I use butter flavored, but regular will do)
4 ½ c. Confectioners Sugar
¼ t. Cloves
¼ t. Ginger
¼ t. Cardamom
3 T. Chai Extract (more if the frosting is too stiff)

Cream butter and crisco together until fluffy, add in confectioners sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Add in additional spices and chai extract and mix thoroughly. Check for consistency and add more extract if needed. You’re done! Ice your cupcakes and try not to eat the icing out of the bowl!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

New Artwork!!!

Just stopping by to post something real quick, like is crazy right now, but I'm going to try to spend more time in this space. We will see how it goes.

Artwork, artwork, I finally put up some artwork in the dining room. Whew, that just plain took forever. I have been contemplating this picture for the longest time. I saw it on someone's blog (Lord knows I can't remember who's), they had copied it off of somewhere else, done with paint chips. Then I saw it on the movie "Skyline". That's a really dumb movie, just in case you were curious. THEN as I was painting it, the kids pointed out that it's also hanging in the bedroom on "Good Luck Charlie".

Anyhow, I didn't take any pictures of how I did it, but it involved a cup, a sharpie and lots of paint and glaze, and I LOVE it. I also made the groceries sign after seeing an inspiration piece on Pinterest, it wasn't hard at all. I wish I could figure out how to link, I would link you to the instructions. The two small frames, just have a fork and spoon in them on some scrpabook paper with little tags that say, well, fork and spoon. I'm big with words like that. Well, anyhow, I hope you like it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Embroidery is my life.....

Or maybe it's knitting, yah, knitting it's my life! But now that I think about it, it might be sewing or scrapbooking... or maybe cooking! I feel like I have crafting schizophrenia!!!

The other day I tried to convince my husband that I was a renaissance woman! He laughed! Maybe I'm a jack of all trades, definitely I'm a master of none! I'm thinking it doesn't really matter what label I give myself, as a matter of fact I have just decided NOT to label myself!!! I'm just crafty that way!

You know the windshield wipers on my van refuse to go down and I make excuses for them. They tell the world, "I refuse to conform to what the world thinks a windshield wiper should be. I am an individual and as an individual I choose to march to the beat of my own drum!" Yeah, that's me! A non conformist!!!! A non stop crafter who doesn't care if it's not done exactly right... it's the process that counts!!

WOW, that was a rant! Now, on to the craft of the day!


Awwww! These shoes are everywhere on the internet and I really didn't deviate too far from the pattern, except that I made a little bit of bias tape to cover the raw edges inside. The embroidery patterns are free from Wild Olive and are supposed to have buttons in the middle, but I thought for a baby that wouldn't be a good idea.

They are for Payton's teacher and her twin sister. They teach Kindergarten and 1st grade at our school, got married the same year and are now having little boys 1 month apart! I love them! Payton's teacher's husband is also deployed with the Navy patrolling for pirates. That sounds weird in our day and age doesn't it! I was so excited to be able to bless them with something for the little blessings in their lives.

Hedgehog (Does it look like a hedgehog? Nate thinks it looks like a turtle!)
Teddy Bear
Made with 100% Linen and a little 100% cotton remnant I found at Joann's. I wanted them to be a neutral color so they would match pretty much anything. Well, off to do some more crafting :)


Wednesday, October 14, 2009


I sometimes wonder what's wrong with me! You see I started this little blog, I LOVE blogs! I read them daily. I am so inspired, I create lots of stuff..... I NEVER post on my own blog!
I am terrified of my own blog!!!!!

I don't know why.... maybe it's the actual process of learning how to use it that's scary, computers are not my friends! It could be the fact that I forget to take pictures.... ALOT, or maybe I'm just scared everyone will think everything I have to say is just well..... boring!
So, in an effort to bolster my confidence and force myself to do something I joined the Lazy Days Skirt Sew Along over at One Crafty Mumma. I don't know how to link to it (anybody care to share how to do that on here?). It's forcing me to actually post something!!!! My name is on the sidebar!!!! So here it is!

Sorry the picture is a little crappy, Zoe is at school right now so I can't really have her put it on an pose for me. I made it fuller than the pattern calls for, because my girl is a super tall sz. 10-12 8 year old and needs a little more fullness. Plus, she likes lots of twirl! I also added pockets to carry around Littlest Pet Shop figures in and put the same ribbon detail on the edges. It's made out of the cutest cat material bought at Joann's with my coupon and the ribbon was from my stash.
This one was a special request for kitty fabric because this girl LOVES cats.

So, I did it! I posted to my blog! Maybe I'll do it again tomorrow, it's a goal, we all need goals right?


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

My computer is working again!!!

Well, I'm finally getting around to posting my blog from yesterday! My computer still isn't working right, but Nate (wonderful man that he is) found a way around it for me. So, here goes.....

May 19, 2009

It's raining today..... again! I know we need it, and I'm not the biggest fan of sunshine, but it's been like 7 days in a row. I'm just sick of grey! :( Thank God for my little patch of green in the front flower bed.... You can't really see them, but there are little lavender flowers on those bushes..... they make me smile! :)

So, since it's raining I'm inside (like I'd really be outside if it wasn't raining!), anyways, like I said, I'm inside, drinking my coffee....

Babysitting Payton's Webkinz..... they need lots of attention, this is gonna be the focus of most of my day.....

Folding some laundry.... the job that never ends. (as I type this I have 3 more loads to fold! UGH!).....

And thinking about making Zoe's teacher an end of the year gift. She loves dolphins and keeps commenting that if Vera Bradley made a dolphin tote bag she'd be all over it. What is it with teachers and Vera Bradley? I swear every teacher at our school has at least 2 Bradley bags. It's crazy!
So, I'm thinking.... I'm crafty... maybe as crafty as Vera Bradley (I just don't have the outstanding marketing team that she has), and I can make a tote bag, with dolphins on it. HA! Easier said than done, NOBODY had dolphin fabric... I had to order this online. I was scared.... I've never ordered fabric online... would it be what I wanted? Would I be able to find matching fabric? Would it really look like dolphins or maybe some kind of demented whales? Well, relax.... It was great. I bought this brown dotted swiss cotton from Joann's to go with it. It's BEAUTIAS!!!

May 20, 2009
So, forgive the lighting, but here it is, and I have to say, "It's darn cute!"

I even made my own shrink plastic dolphin buttons....

Oh, and a matching keyphob (isn't that what they're called?), with a matching button on it!

Okay, I don't like to brag, but to steal fro Elsie Flannegan... "HOLY CUTE!"
I love it!
Hope you're having a great day, I am!
Love ya,

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I have been thwarted by my computer today! I have such a cute post planned and it would be two days in a row.... but alas, nothing! :( My computer won't pop up the cute little program that lets me download my pictures. This normally pops up as soon as I put my memory card in.... but, NOTHING HAPPENS today!!!!

You know, I know just enough about computers to get me into a BUNCH of TROUBLE! I've looked all over for a magic button that will bring up this handy little import program.. it appears to have disappeared. If I call Nathan and ask him what I should do he's just gonna say "seriously Johnnal... again? How many times do I have to tell you that I can't tell what's wrong with the computer when I'm at work looking at electrical stuff and you're at home looking at the computer!!!!". And then he will get frustrated and tell me I'm just gonna have to wait for him to get home. About this time I feel like one of the kids when I just don't want to take the time to put the password in the computer so they can play games. I know that program is just right outside of my reach..... if only I knew where to look. FRUSTRATING!

So no cute post for now.. unless someone knows how to open this program and wants to help me out. Maybe later. Hope you have a good day though, enjoy the rain, do something creative!



Monday, May 18, 2009


So I found this picture the other day..... It makes me laugh for sooo many reasons, not the least of which is that this is my baby sister Casey. I'm guessing this is approx. 1983 sometime... yeah, she looks about 2 years old to me. I'm also gonna go with spring, because Cyrina got a new camera for her birthday that year and my parents rarely took pictures, so it had to be her. Ooooh, that camera was so cool, I was very jealous! I wish I could remember the name of it, it had this really weird disk of film instead of the little canister and it was fairly flat..... does anybody know what camera I'm talking about.... anybody? I know it was really popular.... oh well, I'm totally off the subject. What were we talking about? Oh yeah, Casey.

So anyways, you gotta love the sporty look she's got going. I am particular fan of the knee socks... 5 bucks says there's sandals on them feet! Oh to have a couple more inches of photo.... Casey was going through her "I'm the baby of the family and everyone must bow to me" phase which is probably why Becca and I aren't in the picture as well. Although, now that I think about it that phase has never really ended.... pondering.... nope it hasn't ended. :)

Funny thing is that the picture of Casey is not what struck me the most about this.... It's all the memories......

Do you see that cane rocker on the right - boy, that was good! I remember that my mom wanted one so bad (they were all the rage in 1982-82) and she talked about it all the time. We were not what I would classify as wealthy being missionary tent builders and all, and a rocking char just wasn't in the budget. Shirley Wine had one and as much as my mom drooled over it she would never have spent $35 on it. So, imagine her shock when that's what Pop got her for her birthday. He put it together in the middle of the living room and mom was soooo excited. Then we decided to play clown car with it... How many people can fit on Mom's lap while she's sitting in the rocker? Well, I know me, Becca and Casey managed it until Casey kicked the rest of us off of "her mom's" lap. Boy that rocker had to be glued and pieced back together alot!

The other thing this picture reminds me of is the fridge. That fridge was the source of constant laughter and not just because of the scary stuff mom managed to make us eat out of it!

One day Pop had this car magnet made, it said "On Assignment From God". We went everywhere with that thing on the car (makes sense, we were missionaries). Then one day something happened to the car I guess... my memories a little fuzzy on the "why" this happened.... and the magnet had to come off. Well where else would you store your giant car magnet in the meantime but on the front of the fridge... I mean, DUH! People would laugh and laugh at that I can't tell you how many times we had the obvious pointed out to us... "haha did you know that your fridge is on assignment from God?" You know that thought never occurred to us.

The magnet never made it back on any vehicle that we ever owned and I have no clue what happened to it after we left for Africa. Anyways, you know that fridge might just have been on Assignment From God. It feed alot of hungry people who were not even related to us, some of them we didn't even know there names. It brought alot of laughter when it was probably really needed and it had very willing participants in my Mom and Pop. I crack up thinking about it even now and I wish that I would wear my Christianity, my "assignment" as openly and out loud as my Dad and Mom did. There's a lesson to be learned here. Don't wear knee socks!!!! and never miss the opportunity to be "On Assignment For God"

Love ya,