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Sunday, August 15, 2010


Sorry it has been a few days since posting anything ... I have been busy rekindling and healing with family. It has been a while since I have had a relationship with my family members and the Lord showed me that these relationships are important and that I needed healing with them and to restore these relationships. I feel as if the Lord also said that He was waiting to provide me with my teaching job until all healing had taken place -- something that has been needed for quite some time!!! So, you'll forgive me for not having posted recently, I hope:)

I got back into town on Friday from my sister's and then anticipated the big sale at Hancock's, so didn't really do any crafting until Saturday. Early that morning I headed out to Hancocks:)  I had a list as well as a budget and spent over 4 hours in the store!!! I was soooo overwhelmed!!

I had already started working on 2 or 3 necklaces and decided that I needed to finish one project before starting on another ... plus, my new material was in the washer!! So, I finished beading the necklaces today -- maybe one or two ideas left to work up -- with two of them, specifically, being inspired by the fabric (remnants) I just purchased.
These are the 2 inspired by the fabric (as you can see the fabric in the background).These are the others that I whipped together....
one solid pink, one pink and green, one solid purple, a black and grey pearl one and one with pastel pearls.

*******As soon as I figure out how to 'open' up on Etsy, I will put these in the store to sell. **********

For those who read my previous blog "Experimental Fun", you'll remember the peanut butter coffee cake that I made in the individual loaves. Tomorrow is a friend's birthday (also named Deanna but actually goes by her middle name ... how funny!!) and so tucked a loaf of bread in a bread bag, tied it up with a card and VOILA, a handmade/homemade birthday gift! I thinkn she'll love it with one of her 15 million cups of coffee she drinks. Here it is all wrapped up ....
Oops, it is on it's side .... don't really know how to flip the photo....sorry!!

Well, I am off to categorize, label, and group the items that I have left to put together so that I can form an assembly line to finish these projects/Christmas gifts. Tomorrow is cleaning and laundry day, so I doubt I will do much crafting tomorrow ... hopefully I will have something to share with you by Friday.

Till later ....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Update on baking

Well, since the other day in the Olympics of baking, I have since tasted (and so have many other individuals) the coffee cake which is mm mm good!!! This morning before church I sliced a piece of the chocolate peanut butter coffee cake and it was sooooo scrumptious deliumptous goooood!!!! Just wanted to update you on the TASTE of the breads ..... try them, you will LOVE them, too!!!

As for what else I have been up to .... a friend, who has already been blessed to be a teacher, asked me for a few things to put in their 'class store' -- a reward system that the students earn 'money' for doing extra things and are then allowed to 'shop' with their 'money' - and so I have been showing her what all I had in my stash (or what I could 'throw' together with ease!). So, I put some really simple cards together - a pack of 5 with 2 birthday wishes, 1 school-themed card, a hello greeting, and a friends card. She loved them and again, I was about to make 500 zillion sets of 5 when she told me stop and let her take in the ONE set to see if the children will even be interested. Of course they will be interested, I thought, these are too cute!!!!
The envelopes are in the front ... oops, I forgot I still need to make one for the balck, school-themed card!
Gotta get right on that! Don't ask why a majority of them are PURPLE!!!
I also 'allowed' her to take one of my travel pouches (red, purple, blue stripe) and my 'Wild Things' bag in to the store (these pictures you've already seen). I also made this picture for her to take in ... It was a saying that I had earmarked in a catalog, printed it out on cardstock, the frame was one I had from the Dollar Tree and then pasted the saying onto pink gingham and then pasted on black cardstock, which you can barely see. So, tres easy, but so so cute!!!

The other thing that she saw in my collection (which I actually brought home from my Momma's) was the homemade (out of material or felt) fortune cookies. She thought (prompted by me!) that she could use the cookies in her classroom, stuffed with inspirational words in them for her students. These are all things that I have had in mind to do when the Lord blesses me with that teaching job:) I haven't done any of the cookies yet, still need to talk to Momma to ensure that how I think they are made is actually true ... so, stay tuned, more to come!!!

Signing off....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Experimental Fun

I have not been on for the past couple of days because I have been busy doing a bunch of different stuff!!! All of which I have experimented with and love but have no idea for whom nor why I am creating them -- just simply having fun!! You all know about that, though, I'm sure!! I have been crazily attempting to complete all Christmas gifts before August 1st because I am waiting for a job to come through - well, waiting patiently for the Lord to show me my new job. I have recently completed my education degree in special education and am waiting for my blessing that He will be sending my way...

Anywho, today was my 'cooking' day where I was experimenting with breads, some familiar and some new, dry rubs for meat, and other goodies that I can prepare and freeze (closer to the holidays, obviously!) to have on hand for gift giving or unexpected friend drop-ins.

Here is the banana bread that I have made several times and, most often, I will make in the miniature loaf pans but this one is for someone whom I thought would enjoy the whole thing!
The recipe actually came from the PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel) Cookbook that was created by all the women of the Chapel at the Naval Weapons Station Charleston, which is the church that I grew up in. The recipe collection was published in 1981, I believe!! Each of the women contributed at least one recipe and this one happens to be one of Ms. Ethridge's contribution. It is so mm mm good and so, so easy!!! Here is the recipe....
Banana Bread:
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 bananas, mashed
2 cups sifted flour (I sift before I measure)
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup nuts (I use walnuts)
Mix ingredients together and bake 1 hour at 350 degrees in loaf pan.

This recipe is new for me ... it is a peanut butter coffee cake out of the Better Homes New Cookbook. This, too, was incredibly easy and, as you can see, I made these into the miniature loaves for gift giving. The recipe actually says to bake in a 9x13 dish, but I wanted little ones, so tried it this way. They seem to have turned out but haven't taste tested as of yet! So, the recipe also has a substitution for a chocolate peanut butter coffee cake and so I made 3 of them with the chocolate (the 3 in the back, if you couldn't tell) and 4 plain peanut butter. I hope that they will wrap nicely and then can be tucked nicely into a bread bag and given as a gift. No, I'm not expecting these to last until the holidays -- I was just experimenting to see what kinds of goodies could be easily prepared in bunches to wrap and hand out at Christmas.
Here is that recipe....
Peanut Butter Coffee Cake:
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup peanut butter
3 tablespoons margarine or butter
For topping, in a bowl stir together first 2 ingredients. Then cut in the next 2 ingredients until crumbly. Set aside.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk (I used skim)
1/2 cup peanut butter (I used crunchy)
2 eggs
1/4 cup margarine or butter
              In a bowl stir together 2 cups flour, 1 cup brown sugar, the baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add milk, 1/2 cup peanut butter, the eggs, and 1/4 cup margarine or butter. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed till blended. Beat at high speed for 3 minutes, scraping sides of the bowl frequently.
             Pour batter into a greased 9x13 baking pan, spreading evenly (remember, I used miniature loaf pans). Sprinkle with topping mixture. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Serve warm or cool. Serves about 16 people.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Coffee Cake:
Prepare as above, except add 1/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate pieces to topping and stir in 1/2 cup miniature semisweet chocolate pieces into batter after beating. (I used regular sized morsels because that's what I had and I think it turned out ok!) I'll let you know what it tastes like but it was again, a super easy recipe. Can you tell I'm into super easy?!!?!?!?

So, that's what I've done this morning. I also created some dry rubs but haven't 'dressed' them, so can't show you quite yet....stay tuned to see those little babies.

A Couple of Days Ago...

I have also been making some bags - all of which are from others' tutorials - and are just adorable!!!These are the pictures of the ones that I have stitched together.

These are 6 of the little bags that I have made ...either to put goodies in or just to give as a stand-alone gift.

This one (and the one below) have a travel tissue holder sitting in front of the pouch.

These are the cosmetic pouches that I actually started at my mother's during the summer - she gave me a personal tutorial on how to create them and then sent me home with a paper one:) So, when I got home, I was a stitchaholic with these!!! I am my mother's child ... when I discover something I like and that is cute, I make a zillion of them!!!

These are the pencil pouches or personal pouches that I made for some friends' children.

Hope you enjoy all the wonders I shared today...stay tuned for more glorious handmade items:)

Till later ... Deanna