Wednesday, December 30, 2009

new year's eve

I love New Year's Eve. We have an anuual party with friends. This year we will all be bringing our favorite take out for a family style feast. I loved the Spanish custom I read about on Martha Stewart. Eat 12 grapes at midnight for goodluck through the new year.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

home for the holidays

I love being home for the holidays. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Blogging has and will probably continue to be sparse until after the holidays. I am visiting my family and we have been running all around town. My sister and I went to a vintage consignment store today and found this dress. The picture doesn't do it justice. Gorgeous 1950's dress.

Friday, December 18, 2009

gift exchange

My sister is looking for ideas for a gift exchange party she is attending. It is kind of a fancy party so here are my fancy ideas.

In the recent issue of Martha Stewart Living, there was a how to demonstration for making your own etched Mercury vases. Tape craft paper on the outside of a clear vase and spray paint the inside. There may have been more, but that was the gist of it. This is Pottery Barn's version.

This star serving bowl would make a beautiful gift. Plus it is on sell.
I think anyone would be glad to receive these napkin rings.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

star wreath

The end of finals is almost here which mean I can almost focus on the holiday season. And after a computer fiasco and getting locked out the house half dressed (it is funny now) it can't come soon enough! Meanwhile I love this star wreath project from Martha.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

almost there!!

picture via my sister
Two more days of finals! Be back Friday with new posts.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


My little sister is going to a party where mustaches are encouraged. We found this mustache necklace on Etsy. I can't wait to see it!

stocking advent

I found this stocking advent on Martha Stewart's website. Isn't it fun?

Monday, December 14, 2009


Jonathan Canlas photographed a cousin's wedding recently. I love, love, love this picture he took of my Granny. See his blog here.

kiss cookies

I love hershey kiss cookies. I think I will be making them over the holiday break.

Friday, December 11, 2009


I fell in love with genealogical fan charts when I saw Martha Stewart's template. Unfortunately her template only covers seven generations and I really want a 9 or 10 generation chart. I found some reasonable 9 and 10 generation charts online.

While searching for the charts I came across the Genealogy Fans blog. You can send Hilary your pedigree chart and she will fill in the fan with her beautiful hand writing.

Genealogy Fans uses this Misbach nine generation chart.

This is a ten generation chart, you can get it without the family crests, which would be my personal preference.

I think this is my favorite chart. In the picture that accompanies Martha Stewart's template, she uses a chart like this.

You can also download a free eight generation chart here.

quick pizza dough

photo via flickr
I found this recipe, from just cook already, for pizza dough a few months ago. It calls for a mere twenty minutes of rising time, which means we can have homemade pizza on work days. Fantastic.

rapid-rise pizza dough recipe:

3- 3 1/2 cups flour
1 tbsp. yeast
3/4 tsp. salt
1 cup very warm water
2 tbsp. olive oil
corn meal

in a large bowl combine 2 cups flour, yeast, and salt. stir very warm water and oil into dry ingredients. stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dought. knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 4-6 minutes. cover and lest rest for 10 min (i let mine rest for 20 just because i like it that way). lightly oil round pizza pans. sprinkle with corn meal, roll dough to fit pans, bake 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes. time depends on thickness of crust, size, and toppings.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

chrismas gift

I have been trying to figure out co-worker Christmas gifts, one of the most awkward in my mind. What do you give a coworker? I found this homemade hot chocolate recipe at Taste of Home. Perhaps the perfect solution?


I have a friend who works for Gap. She helps decide what they will sell on Baby Gap online. The big time. Every so often, I like to check out what kind of loveliness she blesses the online world with. This one takes the cake. Perfect for the holidays. If only I had a baby to put it on!

the ultimate coat

photo found here
I know I live too far north. Every year when the bitter cold hits, I check out North Face and inevitably am drawn to this coat. Maybe it could protect me from the low temperatures. For now, I'll dream of Texas.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

photos of the decade

Reuters put together 91 photos that they are calling the photos of the decade. There are a lot of heart wrenching pictures. These were some of my favorites.

all photos via reuters

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Finals are here. I am anxiously anticipating the end of next week! I do have a silver lining, instead of writing a paper comparing two books on Constitutional History, I now get to compare Jane Austen's characters and themes to those of an American equivalent in Coquette. Much more interesting.

Monday, December 7, 2009


photo found here
I have never liked eating grapefruit straight. I like grapefruit based drinks (think Fresca) but grapefruit juice and grapefruit in general have always been on my dislike list. I used half a grapefruit last night while making more cranberry sauce (I love cranberry sauce on my turkey sandwiches, so much better!) I used half a grapefruit. I had half left over and decided to give it another go, I doused it sugar and dug it. Grapefruit and I have made up.

P.S. the Cranberry sauce salad was a hit! I added about 1/4 cup of sugar to the dressing though.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

salad with cranberry dressing

I am taking a salad to a Christmas party tonight. I searched various blogs looking for a new and interesting recipe. This one from Cookbook Junkies wins, I can't wait to try it. Now back to studying!

Green Salad with Cranberry Dressing

1 cup sliced almonds
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh cranberries
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons water

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
4 ounces crumbled blue cheese
1 pound mixed salad greens

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Arrange almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast in oven for 5 minutes, or until nuts begin to brown.
2. In a blender or food processor, combine the vinegar, oil, cranberries, mustard, garlic, salt, pepper, and water. Process until smooth.
3. In a large bowl, toss the almonds, onion, blue cheese, and greens with the vinegar mixture until evenly coated.

Friday, December 4, 2009

50% off

Williams Sonoma has marked their ebelskiver pans 50% off, but only for today!!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

masking tape

Who needs ribbon when you have fun masking tape?


photo found here
calligraphy tips for beginners? yes please!
See Jordan Ferney's tips here.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

city comparison: st. louis, missouri

via yahoorealestate
For the record, I don't think St. Louis even made my husband's list. Hopefully this will change his mind. They have some incredible Victorian era homes, incredible.
Big airport
Gorgeous houses
Cost of living is on the cheaper side
Market is good for dentists
Several sports teams
Nice sized city

Long drive home and flight is almost 3 hours
Property crime is high
Test scores are very low (an indication of struggling schools?)

Median Property- $95,000
Median Family Income-$41,581
Publish Post

Median Age- 35.0
Crime Rate- (the national average is 100, the lower, the better)
Personal Crime Risk- 22
Property Crime Risk-95
Restaurants- 3,555

info via

o christmas tree

Tonight we are getting our Christmas tree. I love December, it really is the best! This is our tree last year.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

city comparison: dallas, texas

photo found here
Dallas is pretty high on the list, my list at least. My husband is still prioritizing his list.
Large airport nearby
Big city
Cheap cost of living
Major sports teams are abundant
No income tax

Do they have tornadoes in Dallas?
About a 3 hour flight home (2 hours or less would be ideal)
Long, long, long drive home.

Median Property- $142,775
Median Family Income-$51,194
Median Age- 31.7
Crime Rate- (the national average is 100, the lower, the better)
Personal Crime Risk- 11
Property Crime Risk-67
Restaurants- 8,907

info via

Monday, November 30, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

cranberry sauce

The cranberry sauce is done! I used the basic cranberry sauce recipe but substituted orange and grapefruit zest for the lemon zest. It smells good.

downtown detroit

We went into Detroit this past weekend. It is an interesting city because parts of it seem vibrant and then you drive a block and it is a ghost town. I loved this fire station that we saw. Detroit has some amazing buildings from the early 1900's.

Monday, November 23, 2009

tea party

For my tea party this weekend I am thinking of making this herbal iced tea. My sister is pushing pink lemonade, my niece loves it.

door decor

I like the simplicity of this Thanksgiving "wreath" from Country Living.

Friday, November 20, 2009

high tea

photo found here
Over Thanksgiving weekend my sisters and I will be having a serious tea party with my four year old niece. Feather boas are encouraged. For our high tea we will be making cucumber sandwiches. This recipe looks like a good place to start, minus the mint (I have allergic reactions to mint, I prefer my lips and eyes to remain unswollen). I think I may substitute parsley for the mint.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


photo found here
I was telling some people that I associate snowflakes with blue because when you draw a snowflake you use blue! They had never heard of anything so strange. So I ask you, if you were to draw a snowflake what color would you use?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

red tights

photo found here
I love Carrie Underwood's red tights. I wonder if I could find some at Target...

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

city comparison: san jose, california

via google images somewhere

My husband and I are starting the preliminary search for our post graduate school move. We have so many cities on this list so we are starting to research them so we can eliminate some. First up, San Jose, California. In the Bay Area and recommended by a friend.
Warmer on average
11 hour drive to parents
Very Expensive
Crime Rate higher than the National Average
No major sports teams (by major I mostly mean basketball, football, and baseball- Pro and College) this is a big one for the husband.

Median Property- $610,000
Median Family Income- $84,857
Median Age- 34.1
Population- 889,309
Crime Rate- (the national average is 100, the lower, the better)
Personal Crime Risk- 101
Property Crime Risk- 67
Restaurants- 3,475
via money magazine

chocolate ganache tart

Pumpkin and berry pies are a Thanksgiving staple, as they should be. It couldn't hurt to throw one of these tarts into the mix, plus the instructions look simple. Famous last words?

Monday, November 16, 2009

cabin fever

My family has a cabin in a small skiing community. I love it. It gets so much snow that you can't use the front door during the winter. I can't wait to go up there during winter vacation!

I saw this suitcase on Caitlin Creer Interiors, it would be perfect for our cabin.

cranberry sauce

I am in charge of the cranberry sauce. We figure it can be transported 8+ hours without going bad. Plus it will fit in my mini cooler. Here are two recipes I am mulling over.

Cranberry Chutney

Martha's basic cranberry sauce
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