Sunday, December 12, 2010

Recipe: Corn and Crab Chowder


OMG 2 posts in one day?
I just had to post this recipe immediately
...because it was so freaking good and everyone needs to try it!

Hubby and I were watching Rachael Ray yesterday (it was the only thing on in the afternoon) and she was making this Corn and Crab Chowder which my husband was drooling over.

So today I decided to make it for him, and DAMN it was delicious. I guess Rachael Ray knows what she's doing ;)

For the original recipe, go here. For my slightly altered recipe, see below!
(I noted my additions/alterations with an *asterisk)

Oh, and this isn't a low-fat meal...it calls for whole milk :)

Enjoy!!

1 tablespoon *extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons butter
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
*2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
*2 bay leaves, *dried
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning blend, found near seafood department, or on spice aisle at the grocery store
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups *chicken broth
1 quart whole milk
3 cups corn kernels, scraped fresh from the cob (*you'll need 5-6 cobs. I only had four and had to add some frozen)
8 ounces cooked lump crab meat – fresh is available in plastic tubs at many fish counters (*make sure to feel through it to make sure there aren't any bits of shell)

Heat a deep pot over moderate heat. Add vegetable oil or EVOO, about one turn of the pan, and butter (*what the hell is "about one turn of the pan? I have to clue either...I just let the butter completely melt before moving on to the next step).

As you chop your veggies, add them to the pot: potatoes, celery, onion and red bell pepper (*and garlic). Then add the bay leaf. Season vegetables with salt and pepper and Old Bay seasoning.
Sauté veggies five minutes, then sprinkle in flour. Cook with flour for two minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and combine. Stir in milk and combine. Bring soup up to a bubble. Add corn and crab meat and simmer soup, about five minutes.

Adjust the soup seasonings and remove the bay leaf (*I added a mix of thyme, oregano and a few other spices I had in the kitchen...along with a bit more Old Bay and s&p).

*I served it with some buttered French bread. I also saw Rachael add a puffed pastry to the top of hers which looked really nice, but I couldn't find any in the store)


To finish off the night, my husband made us some Peppermint Hot Chocolate :)

Have a delightful night!!

List of Fours

Hey all!!

I was tagged by Jessi at The Juici Life. I love reading about this crazy girls "misadventures" about fulfilling her bucket list and her "Thirsty Thursdays" for some delish drink ideas!

List of Fours

1. Four shows that you watch:
~ Bravo...Housewives, Top Chef
~ World of Jenks
~ Pawn Stars, American Pickers
~ What Not to Wear, Project Runway, anything Style Network

2. Four things you are passionate about:
~ My hubby
~ My family
~ My wonderful friends
~ Finding time to craft!

3. Four words/phrases you say a lot:
~ The awful "F" word is my favorite...(Jessi, I left this as-is, lol)
~ Woop Woop!!
~ Ummm Yeah
~ Anything from Napolean Dynamite (GOSH!)

4. Four things you've learned from the past:
~ All you need is love
~ Patience is a virtue
~ Don't sweat the small stuff
~ Live life to the fullest!

5. Four places you would like to go:
~ Italy
~ Fiji
~ Sweden
~ Australia

6. Four things you did yesterday:
~ 1 ornament on the Christmas tree
~ Spent way too much time putting in my Bumpit
~ 6 coats of glitter nail polish
~ Partied at my company Christmas Party

7. Four things you are looking forward to:
~ A clean house
~ Finishing the tree and putting up decorations
~ Christmas, New Years and Hubby's birthday!
~ Family and friends visiting!

8. Four things you love about Winter:
~ Peppermint Mocha and candy canes
~ Leaving the Christmas tree lights up all day long
~ Opening the windows and doors
~ CUTE BOOTS!

9. Tag 4 people to play along:
Naomi at Naomi's Space
Liszha at Liszha's Scrappy World
Paulina at Pretty Pink Posh
Ayana at Ayana's Creations

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Happy New Baby - Girl!

Hey there! Sorry I've been MIA...just got back from a cruise a few days ago ;) Jealous? Me too! I'd love to be back on that cruise ship!

This design was borrowed from another blogger (sorry I don't know who!!) but I put a little twist on it with the doily (love)

My friend asked for "minimal pink" but I just couldn't do it. I love hot pink. And I'm sure the new baby will, too!

Hope you all have a wonderful night!

the good stuff
paper: papertrey ink (pti) bitty dots; doily from michaels
ink: papertrey ink (pti) raspberry fizz
circle punch, corner chomper, sizzix big butterflies die cut
ribbon: stampin up (su)
kaiser craft pearl
random button

(side note: the paper in the back is dear lizzy for american crafts)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Obsessed: Pomegranates

Hello. My name is Julie. I'm addicted to pomegranates.

Well, I don't think it's something that I need to go to a 7-step program for, but they are delicious. and really great for you.

To be honest with you, this is a recent obsession. Pomegranates are an intimidating fruit...I've never really known the best way to cut into them, so I never bought them. They are lumpy and have a weird nub at the top and I didn't know what could and shouldn't be eaten.

So here's a little "how to" care of one of my new favorite blogs for healthy eating - Gina's Skinny Recipes

How To Open A Pomegranate

Step One



Step Two
Remove the top. This easily comes right off.


Step Three
Once you remove the top you will see sections of the pomegranate divided by white membrane, score along those edges and the pomegranate will open up like a flower and all the arils will easily come out.


Step Four
Enjoy!!


Now that you know how to open a pomegranate correctly...here are some wonderful looking recipes. Hopefully I'll get to try them soon and let you know how they are!!!


Spiced Pears and Pomegranate Recipe
Spiced Pears and Pomegranate

Ingredients

  • 3 pears - peeled, cored and cut into wedges
  • 1 pomegranate, skin and light-colored membrane removed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped almonds (optional)
  • 4 sprigs fresh mint leaves for garnish (optional)

Directions

  1. Place the sliced pears and pomegranate seeds into a bowl. Toss with lemon juice to coat. Combine the brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a small cup or bowl, then mix into the fruit. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving to blend the flavors. Serve in individual dishes, and garnish with a sprinkling of chopped almonds and a sprig of mint.


-------------

soccer 021
Pomegranate Pancakes

Ingredients:

Directions:

  • Combine flour through baking soda in a bowl
  • Whisk together pomegranate juice, egg and oil
  • Pour pomegranate mixture into the bowl with the four mixture and beat until combined
  • Spray griddle or pan with non-stick cooking spray
  • Pour batter onto pan in individual pancakes, flipping after approximately 2 minutes
  • Cook until batter is set
  • Top with syrup, powdered sugar, fruit or desired toppings

-------------------
Spicy Pumpkin Soup with Cilantro Pepita Pesto, Pomegranate Arils, and Cotija Cheese
Spicy Pumpkin Soup

long recipe - see above hyperlink :)

-------------------


Mango-Pear Sushi with Pomegranate Blueberry Wasabi

This looks really fun...and it might actually be a wasabi I can handle!! (maybe lol)

-------------------

Chocolate Covered Pomegranate Seeds (yes, please!)

step by step recipe (see hyperlink)

-------------------

Pomegranate Martini via Gina's Skinny Recipes
Pomegranate Martini
Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes
Servings: 1 • Serving Size: 4 oz • Calories: 124 Points: 2 ww points
  • 3 oz Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice
  • 1 oz citrus infused vodka
  • crushed ice
  • lemon or lime twist
Super chill the glass, shake well with crushed ice and add a twist of lemon or lime for a killer drink.

------------------

Pomosa (twist on the traditional Mimosa)
allrecipes.com - no pic, sorry!

  • 1/2 cup brut Champagne
  • 2 tablespoons bottled pomegranate juice
  • 1 teaspoon pomegranate seeds (optional)

And last, but not least, you can always check out the POM Wonderful website for great recipes/ideas :)

Happy eating...and drinking!!


**all pictures are taken from blogs/websites that have all been referenced with the appropriate recipe :p

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Vintage Sweet Pea - Birthday Wishes

Happy Birthday Brett!!!


the good stuff
paper: stampin up (su) crushed curry; papertrey ink (pti) hawaiian shores; vellum
stamps: papertrey ink year of flowers - sweet pea, mega mixed messages and text background
ink: staz on; papertrey ink chai; archival ink sepia
ribbon: PrarieBirdBoutique from Etsy
misc: michaels button; basic grey bling; twine; white pen; platinum stickles
cuts: martha stewart royal butterfly; papertrey ink eyelet border; corner chomper

side note: to get the light white effect on the sweet peas, I colored on the back side of the vellum with the white pen...less chance for smudging this way too :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

My New Favorite Kitchen Gadget...and Butternut Squash Soup!!

I've been wanting one of these bad boys for a while now. I have a blender, yes, but this is so much more convenient, less "clunky" and ...prettier.

Yes, pretty is important when it comes to things I put in my kitchen. So which color did I choose? All 5! Just kidding, it was a really difficult decision but after almost leaving Sur la table (love) with the navy one, my friend convinced me that the Pomegranate Immersion Blender would be best as it matches all of my other appliances. Thanks Erin :)

Since today was a bit chilly (windows open, bundled up in sweaters, scarves and long socks) in Florida...so it was about 68 degrees, lol, but that's cold for me, I decided to make some Butternut Squash Soup for the hubs and I.

The recipe was passed along to me from Erin (same shopping buddy) who I'm sure got it from Cooking Light, as she does with most of her recipes.

So here it is...I hope you enjoy as much as my husband and I did. And if you don't have one of these hand blenders yet, no worries, you can use your blender :)

Butternut Squash Soup:

1 1/2 tablespoon butter
1/2 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic
2 springs fresh thyme (I used dried)
1/2 to 3/4 butternut squash - peeled, seeded and cut into 1 inch cubes
4 cups chicken stock (or chicken broth)
1 pinch ground cumin
salt and ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat, cook the onion,
garlic and thyme in the hot butter until the onion has softened (about
five minutes). Add the squash and chicken stock, bring to a simmer
and cook until the squash is tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Season with
cumin, salt and pepper and remove from heat.

2. Pour the soup into a blender, filling the blender no more than
halfway. Hold the lid of the blender in place with a kitchen towel
and carefully start the blender using a few quick pulses to get the
soup moving before leaving it on to puree. Puree in batches until all
is smooth and pour into a serving bowl. Or, you can use a stick
blender and puree the soup right in the pot. Puree until completely smooth.

Check back in soon for some more tasty soup recipes using my new favorite kitchen gadget :)

Enjoy!

Friday, October 15, 2010

"Skinny" Pumpkin Cream Cheese Recipe

picture care of SkinnyTaste.com

Quick post...I found this delicious recipe via Everything Yellow who found the recipe here.

I also recommend a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel to accompany this spread. Deeee-lish.

Enjoy!!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Recipe: Spaghetti Squash, Homemade Sauce and Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Meatballs!

Oh how I love fall...

Our local grocery store is carrying lovely gourds and squash(es?) and we're finally getting weather that isn't 80+ degrees and humid here in Florida.

To welcome the new season a couple weeks ago, I decided to cook up some spaghetti and meatballs. But not the traditional kind. Say hello to "spaghetti squash"...

It's a healthier alternative to regular spaghetti and pretty easy to make.

I combined a couple different recipes for cooking the squash and homemade sauce and the Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Meatballs.

And it was so good...my husband has never that kind of squash before and I made him a believer :)

He thought it was a little over-ambitious but it really didn't take that long to
make, surprisingly.

(He knows how frustrated I can get when I cook) :)

While the squash was cooking (for about an hour and a half, I started making the sauce, which then cooked itself for about an hour and then I started on the meatballs...worked out perfectly!!)

If the meatballs get a little overcooked (as mine did...cooked them a smidge too long), don't worry, just let them steam in the sauce and they will juice back up!

This makes a ton of leftovers (if you're cooking for two) so keep that in mind...

Also, if you try this and love it (or have suggestions on improvement) please let me know!! If you become a believer of spaghetti squash too and you need another recipe, go here! Courtesy of one of my sweet new blog friends Jessi :)

Enjoy!!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sunday, Sundae, Sunday!

I just have to say, I have never, ever seen Macadamia ice cream in Florida...and it was at our local grocery store, Publix. Besides having a fantastic weekend with my husband, this was the cherry on top!

On our honeymoon (over 2 years ago) in Kauai, Hawaii, we experienced the Hula Pie.
It was a-ma-zing.
When we got back home, I searched and searched for Macadamia ice cream. I never found any. Until NOW! I love Publix!
Unfortunately, it's a limited edition...so who knows how long it will be around, but I do know that I will be enjoying a few extra sundaes for a while ;)

Enjoy!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Best Ever...Bruschetta!

(In my opinion, anyway!)

For anyone that really knows me...I am not confident in the kitchen. It gives me anxiety having to cook: having the proper portions for the number of people I'm cooking for, correctly measuring each ingredient, and the possibility of screwing up and having to throw all of my hard work (and all of that food) in the trash.

I envy my husband, for many reasons. Especially his calm demeanor and his ability to throw any random ingredient with another and create a culinary masterpiece. Quite frankly though, sometimes it really pisses me off ;)

Anyway, through another recipe I tried (gone wrong) and buying too much at the grocery store, I found my new love for fresh mozzarella balls!

I had some leftover tonight...along with some tomatoes and I thought I would attempt my first ever bruschetta. I looked online for a few recipes, and the only one that really caught my eye was this one. Um, the bad thing? NO MEASUREMENTS! eeeeek! So, I grew some mozzarella balls (ha) and decided to wing it. I went to the grocery store and picked up a French Baguette and some fresh basil.

A little side note...the only other time I've used a broiler pan was last week, haha, I didn't even know what it was before that. Yeah.

Ok so here's the good stuff (serving for 8 pieces)

3/4 pint/package of grape tomatoes (diced)
4 sprigs of fresh basil
1 shallot (minced)
small package of fresh mozzarella balls (diced)
salt
pepper

Mix the above ingredients in a bowl, stick in fridge while you preheat the oven to a high broil. (tip: make sure while broiling that you leave the oven door open a smidge - found out through another cooking catastrophe).

French Baguette
Olive Oil (EVOO)
Broiler Pan

Cut the French baguette into thin-medium slices at a diagonal. I cut 8 pieces and there was still a good amount of the loaf left.

Drizzle with EVOO lightly. Broil in oven for about 5 minutes (?) or until just "tanned". I'm sure you can also do this in a toaster over. You want it to be crispy, but not burned.


Take out of the oven and put on your serving tray. Drizzle with some more EVOO and put a little bit of salt over it while still warm.

Dish out your mixture on each of the baguette slices and serve. Voila.

Seriously...this is the best bruschetta I've ever had (not to be cocky) but it's amazing. My husband even high-fived me after he ate it. LOL.

If you try out my recipe, please let me know...I'd love to hear what you think!

Oh -- Almost forgot the most important part!! WINE! I paired mine with a super cheap, but delicious, Chardonnay from my beloved Total Wine. It's called Double Dog Dare (and I think that it was 3.99). Bargain!

Thanks for stopping by and good luck in the kitchen!

Hugs and Love,

J

Friday, September 3, 2010

Circle Circus - Birthday Wishes

Hello 4 day weekend....!!!

Have a fabulous (and safe) Labor Day :)

...and a very happy birthday to Stephanie!

the good stuff:
paper: papertrey ink (pti) new leaf; white cardstock
ink: papertrey ink (pti): hawaiian shores and simply chartreuse; brillance - white
stamps: papertrey ink (pti) butterfly wishes (sentiment) and stampin up (su!) circle circus
misc: pti button; kaiser and basic grey bling / pearls; prima - flower centers
punch: stampin up circle scallop

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Happy Sunday!

Happy Sunday!

How will you celebrate?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Vibrant Thanks!

...hope you're having a great week so far and the weekend is right around the corner!

I'm actually going with my husband to see Demetri Martin on Saturday and I'm SOO excited. If you've never heard of him, you're missing out!! He's a stand-up comedian and is hilariously funny. You should check out his stuff on youtube or on Comedy Central.

My husband and I are big concert/entertainment junkies...but this is our first comedian that we've seen do stand up in a big arena (tampa bay performing arts center)...we've seen Jeff Dunham and a few other comics, but only in a small venue at one of our local comedy theaters.

I just can't wait, is it Saturday yet!?

So anyway, the card :)

I thought I would do something really colorful for a friend of mine's mom. I was able to spend the day getting a manicure, shopping and lunch with both of them. It was so much fun...I can't wait for her mom to visit again (and I'm going to bring my mom, they would get along so well!!)

Her mom was so adorable and I just thought I would make her a sweet little card to let her know that I appreciated spending the time with her!

Hugs and Love,

J

the good stuff:
paper: stampin up (su) rich razzleberry;
papertry ink (pti) rustic white, hawaiian shores and simply chartreuse
misc: corner chomper; sizzix - embosslits beautiful wings;
k&company acetate and paper die cuts;
bling by kaiser craft
stamps: papertrey ink (pti) mega mixed messages
ribbon: websters pages "bloomers" in spring green
ink: archival ink - sepia

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Thank You Martha Stewart

I'm now obsessed with doilies.

I've been using them everywhere: here, here and here. Not to mention all the cards I still need to post.

Yikes.

But it makes for a heck of cute card, doesn't it?

This is for a girl at work...she's adorable and just had her 2nd baby girl. And for months, I never even knew she was preggo. She's TINY.

Hopefully if/when I decide to have kids, I'll look like she did.

Besides doilies, I wanted to use my sizzix pocket die with FELT. I love hot pink, and hot pink felt? HELLO!

I just like that I could take the doily/tag out and it's like a card of its own :)



Ok, now I'm off. My company's gym opened up last week and I'm all out of excuses for not working out....maybe it's "too convenient". Is that a plausible excuse? no? darn.

Have a fabulous Tuesday!

the good stuff:
paper: papertrey ink (pti) - rustic white;
american crafts - craft fair
misc: martha stewart tag doily; doily and ribbon from michaels; prima flower; floss from joanns; kaiser crystals
stamps: papertrey (pti) - bitty baby blessings;
close to my heart (ctmh) - tags
ink: papertrey (pti) - raspberry fizz; brillance - yellow
die cut: sizzix pocket

Monday, August 16, 2010

Peach Cobbler :)

For some reason, I wanted to make a peach cobbler. and I felt the need to start it at 9:45pm.

Hopefully it's good...I'll let you know tomorrow ;)


step by step: here


I plan to serve it warm....a la mode


Update: oh my goodness...this was delicious. you must try it.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Whimsy Thanks

It's Saturday. How delightful :)

I just wanted to share my latest card with you
before I go to brunch and get a manicure :)

Don't you just love the weekends?

the good stuff
paper: papertrey ink (pti): hawaiian shores and simply chartreuse
stamps: papertrey ink (pti): simply chartreuse and fresh snow;
stampin up (su!): pocket silhouettes and medallion
die cut: sizzix - embosslits beautiful wings; lots of tags label 1
misc: martha stewart doily; k & company flowers;
white tulle from craft store; bling from kaiser craft; pearl brad from reflections (michaels)

Monday, July 19, 2010

It's a Wonderful Day!

To my husband of 2 wonderful years...

I love you for being the inspiring, admiring, encouraging, devoted, charming, romantic, sincere, passionate, driven, hilarious, attentive, intelligent (and sexy) man that you are!

To many, many, many more amazing years with you!

Happy anniversary babe!

xoxo wifey

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Birthday Wishes!


I'm really proud of this card :)

I made it for my coworker...she's adorable, preppy and very sweet (and she loves pink).

I have had such a card-making blockage lately. This card took me over an hour. I just couldn't get the layout right..it's like I knew exactly what I wanted to do, but I couldn't do it. Do you ever get that? Luckily, I finished the card
and was happy with it.

The birthday girl liked it, too. Which always makes you feel better about what you've made!!

I know I always say it...but I'm not good at layering. It makes me anxious. I never feel like it quite goes together. This card, for me at least, has a lot of layering -- and detail. I wanted to make sure I took pictures of everything...in case I felt the need to duplicate it later :)
For instance, I hand-stamped the Happy Birthdays at the bottom repeatedly..and sideways (on purpose).
This was stamped in VersaMark. If you've never used it, you definitely should start! It's perfect for
embossing...or like in this case, it makes a watermark effect slightly darker than the color of your cardstock.

I also wanted to use a few new die cuts that I got from PTI ( Papertrey Ink ) a couple months ago. Oh, and the felt. LOVE the felt. YUM!

Everything comes together to make this cute little birthday card :)

Hope you like it too!! Have a wonderful day!!

Hugs and Love,
J


recipe:
paper: PTI Papertrey Ink Hawaiian Shores; plain white cardstock; American Crafts Craft Fair
stamps: PTI Papertrey Ink - Mega Mixed Messages and Fillable Frames #1
ink: VersaMark, PTI Papertrey Ink - Hawaiian Shores and Simply Chartreuse
die cuts: PTI Papertrey Ink - Eyelet Lace Border and Fillable Frames #3; Sizzix Big Butterflies; Stampin Up tiny leaves
misc: Martha Stewart doily tags; PTI Papertrey Ink felt in Simply Chartreuse and Raspberry Fizz; Basic Grey Bling It pearls; Glimmer Mist; flower and pins from Michaels

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

With Sympathy - Butterflies

Good Morning!

I just wanted to quickly post a card that I made last night. It's always tough to create a sympathy card...especially when its for someone close to you.

Our friend just lost her mother a few days ago. I can't imagine the feeling. My heart breaks whenever I hear of someone losing a person close to them. It makes me appreciate everyone I have in my life and a reminder not to take anything...or anyone for granted.

So, with that said, whether I know you or if I've only spoken to you via our blogs...
I love you dearly!

Hugs and Love,
J

recipe:
stamps: Papertrey Ink (PTI): With Sympathy, Mega Mixed Messages;
Stampin Up (SU): Great Friend
paper: Papertrey Ink (PTI): Rustic Cream, Hawaiian Shores, Simply Chartreuse
ink: Papertrey Ink (PTI): Hawaiian Shores, Simply Chartreuse; VersaMark
misc: Zing! clear embossing powder; Basic Grey Bling It Pearls
punches: Martha Stewart border, Martha Stewart Royal Butterfly
ribbon: Papertrey Ink (PTI) vintage cream

Monday, July 5, 2010

Jardin Botanique de Montreal

Flowers are probably my favorite things to take pictures of. The vibrant colors, the textures, the intricate, dainty details. Ever since I learned how to use my camera as I mentioned in this post, I have been ever more excited to take pictures!!

We were just in Montreal last week and it was
gorgeous, especially when we visited the Jardin botanique de Montréal / Montréal Botanical Garden.
Here are a few beauties...straight out of the camera :) No photoshop!!

Inside the Botanical Garden, there was a rose garden with a collection of over 10,000 roses. It was incredible.

I really loved taking pictures of the pollen from each of the flowers I saw using the Super Macro function on my camera.
It always makes me nervous when taking my pictures because the screen on my camera is SO small. What looks good on that screen, may be blurry or grainy when I load them onto the computer. But in this case, I was just so thrilled when I came home and saw the pictures on my computer for the first time. They were perfect!
Another thing I loved was this Poppy!

Doesn't it look like crinkled paper? Sooo beautiful and delicate. What I thought was even cooler is that they were growing out of cabbage!?!

I could do a post on Poppies alone...they are awesome. And I took a TON of pictures of all the
different colors :)

I have no idea what this flower is...but how COOL is it? My husband loved this one the most, of all the flower pictures I took!

It's almost electric for me, in a way!


I love Dahlias, too. They're big and bold and they have so many beautiful layers. Just look at the colors on this one...a bunch of these yummies in a vase is a decorator's Heaven :)

I'm not quite sure what this one is...my guess is some kind of daisy with the way the petals are. I've never seen anything like this one. I love the stiffness of the pollen (inside of the flower...whatever you want to call it :) And I love the way the sun is hitting on the left side of it! It could look even been if photoshopped, but I really wanted to focus this post on the raw images, untouched!

Not sure what this one definitely is, either, but I'm pretty sure it's in the daisy family also....it almost looks like a sunflower a little bit, except the center is much more subtle than the normal black-center of a sunflower.

I had SO much fun taking these pictures and I hope that you've enjoyed browsing through them!

My husband was so happy with the way these came out and the way I took them, that he actually told me I should frame them and display around the house! What a sweetheart :)

Come back soon for some architectural and miscellaneous pictures that I took from Montreal!

Have a fabulous day!
Hugs and Love,
J

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July! (and a Birthday!)

Happy July 4th!

I thought this card would be appropriate to post today because the stars look like fireworks :)

My nephew (on my husband's side) turned 7 yesterday! I can't believe it...he is growing so quickly! He was only about 6 months old when I started dating my husband, wow, how time flies.

This card was super simple to make...just a few stamps, paper and my Sizzix Stars die cut.

The colors were inspired from the Transformers wrapping paper that we used to wrap my nephew's Nerf gun.

(Jim and I spent at least an hour in the aisle deciding which Nerf gun would be best. They all look exactly the same to me, lol, so I'm glad Jim was there to make the decision).

The birthday boy celebrated in Disney World this weekend -I know they are having a great time :) I really needed a little R & R time...so I did not join them in the festivities.

It's been a super relaxing weekend for me so far, I have the house to myself, I was able to make a couple cards, I've watched a good amount of tv :) and I'm planning on cleaning the floors....at some point...that's my plan, anyway!

Hope you all have a fabulous 4th and be safe!!

Hugs and Love,
J

recipe:
stamps: Papertrey Ink (PTI) Star Prints, Everyday Button Bits; Stampin Up (SU) Solid Stripes
ink: Versamark
paper: Papertrey Ink (PTI) and Stampin Up (SU)
misc: Sizzix Stars #2 die cut; brads

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Giveaway Alert!!

More blog candy!!

Doesn't this make you so happy?

I'm in love... :)

And there's more where that came from! Leave a comment over at the DeNami blog [you should become a follower if you aren't already...]

They are giving away 2 stamp sets besides these rhinestones...be sure to check our their adorable new collection, too!! They are SO cute!!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

AWESOME BLOG CANDY ALERT!!

If you haven't done so already...visit Paulina over at Pretty Pink Posh for some amazing EK Success blog candy ;)

All you have to do is leave her a comment...but I definitely recommend you become a follower -- she's awesome! Not only that, if you become her follower, you can leave an extra comment for another chance to win!!

Good luck [to me]!!

Just kidding... ;)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sweet Sweets!

Hey there!

You'll be glad you stopped by today...I have some pretty pastries to show you from my trip up to New Jersey / Philadelphia a couple months ago.

I should be packing now for my trip up to Montreal tomorrow, but of course, I'm procrastinating :)

I was emptying the pictures on my ca
mera to create room on the memory card and came across these pictures I forgot about. This little bakery in Philly was delightfully cute. The window displays were uber-cute! It's called Termini and if you're in that area...you
really need to stop in for some goodies.


Now, I'm kinda proud of myself because I finally learned how to use my camera after 3 years of having it. I don't have anything super amazing, but it's a perfect little camera for me. The Canon PowerShot S315
is a nice mix between a point and shoot and a fancy professional camera :) My husband's uncle is a photographer in New Jersey (I'll post pictures of his amazing studio soon) and he was pretty impressed with my little camera!
That was exciting to hear, lol.

Anyway...I've always shot with auto and a flash. Isn't that what everyone was taught? Well it's wrong (well, it's not as great as it could be, I should say!)

Uncle Jeff told me that it's really important to experiment with different settings, and he never uses anything other than Aperture and Shutter Speed settings (which on my
camera are Av and Tv).

So, this trip I decided to use none other than those two settings. These pictures on this posts are SOOTC (straight out of the camera) and I am still kind of in shock...I really like the way these came out -- WAY better than if I would have used just an Auto setting.
Don't those Cappuccino Biscottis look incredible? They were! I love how just a few in the center are in focus and the rest is blurred. I did that! Me! I'm just so excited that I'm finally taking good pictures with the camera that I already own!!

And these cupcakes...these were practically in the back room and I was behind the counter! My zoom is pretty good, I'd like to think! I have to confess, I didn't have a cupcake, but they look so fun and yummy!!

Last picture I'd like to end on -- not exactly sure what is chocolate covered, but it looked so good. It was really difficult not sampling everything in the bakery! (Not my best picture, but I don't have time to photoshop it before I really NEED to start packing!!)

Which is now, lol. I have to wake up at 5am to catch an 8:30 international flight at an airport an hour away (and get breakfast...and coffee).

Can't wait to post more pictures of my awesome New Jersey / Philadelphia trip!! And I am so excited to be using my camera in Montreal -- I hope to get some awesome pictures :)

Have a great week and weekend...I'll see you next Tuesday!

Hugs and Love,

J