Sweet, sweet Ava!!! I love her so much! She will be 3 months old in just a few days.
Monday, December 26, 2011
Friday, December 23, 2011
I have found T H E B E S T sugar cookie recipe!!! You know those ones you buy in the store that are so soft and yummy and you can't eat just one? Well, my hubby says these are better than those and that they are like "pillows". His exact words. Ha! I love him :) Here is the link to the website I found them from.
6 cups all purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1 c. butter, at room temperature
2 c. granulated sugar
2 t. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. sour cream
1 c. butter, room temperature
1 t. vanilla extract
4 c. powdered sugar
6 T. heavy cream
Several drops food coloring
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the flat beater attached, cream the butter and granulated sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time beating until each is incorporated. Add the vanilla and sour cream and beat at low speed until combined.
Add the dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, scraping down the bowl as needed. Dough will be a bit “sticky”. Divide dough into two sections. Flatten into rectangles about 1 1/2 inches thick, then wrap with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator overnight or at least two hours until firm.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.
Use the plastic wrap that you chilled the dough in. Dust the top of the dough and then flip and flour the other side, keeping it on the plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out circles and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake for 7 minutes, until pale golden. Immediately transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.
To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and vanilla. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Once smooth and creamy, add in heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired spreading consistency is achieved. If desired, add food coloring and beat until combined.
Once cookies have cooled completely, frost and add sprinkles. Allow frosting to set, then store in an air-tight container. Let cookies sit for several hours before serving to allow the flavors to develop.
Makes approximately: 5 to 6 dozen cookies (will vary on the thickness of the dough)
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Christmas is 4 days away!!!
I only have to work half of a day today and tomorrow and then I can officially enjoy Christmas. I plan on baking tomorrow all afternoon and I cannot wait to try several new recipes!
I am pretty much done with my shopping and *almost* done wrapping presents. I saw SO many cute wrapping & tag ideas on Pinterest. Here are some that I am loving :)
DIY gift tags
LOVE this simple idea of using a music sheet.
This is actually what I did! I used leftover greenery from our tree to add something extra.
I love anything chevron so of course I love this FREE chevron printable :)
Brown paper packages with monogram :)
Wrapping with newspaper, monogram, bakers twine. Perfect!
I LOVE doileys and have a ton of them that I have collected from here and there. I plan on using these ideas one day :)
I thought mine turned out pretty good this year----not as cute as these by any means----but definitely better than the good ol gift bag (which there is NOTHING wrong with!!! sometimes fast & easy is better than cute!) But hopefully next year I can get even more creative :)
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Something really exciting happened yesterday! Josh got a call from Hendersonville Fire Department and he has an interview Jan 6th!!!
Let me back of for those who do not know the full story....
Josh has been trying to get on the fire department for 2 years now. He has applied several places and he is a volunteer in Pleasant View. He stays the night in PV one night a week and goes down there any free time he has to try and get experience. He is also starting EMT school next month. It has been a long process but it all started 2 years ago when he applied for Hendersonville. He did so good on the test that he placed #15 out of 300 something.....but they only hired 3. They had an opening earlier in the year so they called him and asked him if he still wanted to be on the list and he said yes. But at the time they only hired 1. They called him again last week to see if he still wanted to be on the list and he said yes. We knew he was moving on up in the list but had no clue where he was on the list. Well, they called him yesterday saying they wanted him to come in for an interview!!!! This is major! We really hope he gets this job. Please be praying with me for God's will in this situation! And if this is where is supposed to be that he will do good on his interview and that they will show him favor. Thank you so much! :)
Monday, December 19, 2011
Saturday night I got together with my favorite girls :) We had dinner at PF Changs and seriously was there close to 4 hours! We always have sooo much fun when we are together. We did an ornament exchange with Christmas coming up and that was fun. We also took tons of pics, as usual, and I am sure we got on a lot of people's nerves but we don't care! I am so thankful for each of these girls and love them all so much.
Our cute ornaments!
We got these mini desserts that were SO good and really cute!
Well, me & Annie got 2 :)
"A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words."
Saturday, December 17, 2011
I finally got around to taking some pictures of the house since it is all decorated for Christmas! I love how it all turned out this year. It feels so cozy :)
Here our living room:
Our entryway table:
(I actually have BIG plans for our entryway that I will be starting on sometime soon after Christmas!)
I ended up attaching some ribbon to our closet door that is in our living room & hung our Christmas cards with clothes pins. I love love LOVE getting Christmas cards in the mail :)
Our kitchen that I am still in LOVE with!! We completely remodeled our kitchen back in February and I can't believe I have never put up pictures before. Actually.......I do know why........it is pretty much done except for 4 cabinet doors. That is a sore subject in this house so we won't go there :) Here is one side of the kitchen that is done:
I draped a pinecone/berry garland over the sink & decorated with some leftover greenery from our Christmas tree. We always get a real tree & always have to cut it down some to fit in our itty bitty living room. I love it because I can decorate with the leftovers :)
And here is our bedroom that is currently undergoing ANOTHER makeover!!! Ha! I got a new duvet cover from West Elm & I am about to paint the walls and the nightstands AGAIN. Also, I am going to hang some of our black & white wedding pictures by the window instead of all the other stuff .
I hung the Merry Christmas banner I made out of burlap from the curtain rods & decorated with more leftover greenery on the ledge :)
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
I have been bad lately. REALLLLLY bad. I have been craving sweets for a while now and I have eaten lots of them. I told myself I was going to start working out again like a month ago and have just not gotten around to it yet.... but as soon as Christmas is over and it slows down in the salon I will be pulling out my Slim in 6 video and getting on the treadmill. But until then, I will make as many desserts as possible and thanks to Pinterest I have many that I want to try :)
I am actually making this chocolate chip cookie dough cheese ball tomorrow for our home teams Christmas party..yummmmm
Crock pot chocolate candy! A client of mine actually brought me some last Christmas..not sure if this is the same recipe she used but it sure was good :)
Hot chocolate cookies
Cake batter fudge!!!
I am FOR SURE trying this recipe!!! Love soft sugar cookies with icing :)
Homemade peppermint patties
Hot fudge pie. Heaven.
White chocolate peppermint fudge
I am pretty much addicted to anything caramel so this homemade caramel looks really good right about now..
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
I decided this year that I wanted to make our own Christmas cards.... but I knew I didn't want to put a lot of time or money into it because we send out about 50 cards. Well, one day I was driving past our old church and saw a big red barn and it just HIT me & I knew exactly what I wanted to do! The barn actually belongs to our old pastor so I asked him if we could take some pictures in front of it and he said yes.....so we met my parents up there and my mom took some pictures of us. This is the one we are using for our Christmas card:
I made the banner by cutting burlap squares and the letters are actually stickers. I wanted to stencil them on but this was easy and the letters show up really good for the pics :)
First thing I did was go on picnik.com and did some editing. I like to use the vibrance tool on everything except our skin....if you use it on the skin it makes it look weird and not cute. Trust me. I also sharpen the picture to give it a more clear look and sometimes I adjust the highlights (under the exposure tab). Then I added the text at the bottom with a holiday font called Winceslas.
Then I ordered 50 4x6 prints from mpix.com. That is my favorite place to get pictures printed. My wedding photographer actually told me about it. They have great quality at a great price!!!
Then I went to Hobby Lobby and bought this little book that was 40% off!! :) It has 50 different designs that are all 4.5 x 6.5. The PERFECT size!
Then I glued (I just used a glue stick) the picture onto the paper right in the middle so there is a border around each picture. I really love the way they turned out and I love how there is such a variety!! Here are just a few:
So for about $16 we got 50 really cute Christmas cards! :)