Saturday, January 30, 2010

almost like a taste of McHatties at home

Cinnamon Chip Scone & Mock Devonshire Cream

I say "almost" because nothing really compares to the multi-course meal, divine tea, and lovely conversation that usually accompanies a trip to McHatties. But it's as close as I can get to recreating the experience at home.

Before McHatties, I'd never experienced Devonshire cream on a scone. Let me tell you from one who's been there... a scone is just a dry crusty biscuit without it! Not really, but it GREATLY ENHANCES the scone experience.

First things first...


The scones...

the dough

Cinnamon Chip Scones
TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 10 min.

3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold butter
1 cup buttermilk
1 package (10 ounces) cinnamon-flavored baking chips
2 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large bowl, combine the flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in buttermilk just until moistened. Fold in chips. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; knead gently 10-12 times or until dough is no longer sticky. Divide in half; gently pat or roll each portion into a 7-in. circle. Brush with butter and sprinkle with remaining sugar. Cut each circle into six wedges. Separate wedges and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 425° for 10-13 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve warm. Yield: 1 dozen.


And last but certainly not least...

mock devonshire

The crème de la crème... literally:

Mock Devonshire Cream
CATEGORY: Appetizer
METHOD: TIME: Prep/Total Time: 10 min.

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup sour cream

In a small mixing bowl, beat whipping cream for 2 minutes. Add confectioners’ sugar and continue beating until stiff. Place the sour cream in a bowl; stir in a small amount of whipped cream. Fold in remaining whipped cream. Cover and refrigerate until serving. Yield: about 1 cup.

Cinnamon Chip Scone & Mock Devonshire Cream


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Photo Challenge Themes for February... the final leg

at play

Project 365 = Weekly Photo Themes is coming to a close this month. For those of you who made it through the year... CONGRATULATIONS!! I'd love to hear how the experience has impacted your photography. Sadly, I haven't done very well myself :( I think the themes were a bit much for my already overloaded photography schedule. For those of you looking forward, there are several other great Flickr groups to consider, including THIS ONE and THIS ONE and THIS ONE.

And now, the weekly themes for February:

January 31-February 6, 2010: All Things Sweet
February 7-13, 2010: Sky Shots
February 14-20, 2010: Color My World (every day a different color)
February 21-27, 2010: Macro Mania

Let me know if you have any questions!

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Friday, January 29, 2010

procrastinating again

iced caramel latte

The kids are home and I should be working on my tax stuff. Instead, I've baked and Googled and talked on the phone. I'm still in my pajamas (obviously, going for a record this week) and just can't seem to find the motivation to move.

So I thought I'd blog :)

For those of you wondering about my eye-thing and missed my Tweets, I went back to the opthamologist on Tuesday and am back on medication. I go back in two weeks so he can see for himself the symptoms are totally gone (happened last month but they returned once I tapered off the prednisone). There might be some more tests at that point... I'll keep you posted!

BTW, the picture above is from yesterday - a frozen caramel latte. It really would have been better with a drizzle of caramel but I wasn't thinking. Target used to sell a variety of frozen latte mixes in the coffee section (Archer Farms brand) but I purchased my box quite a while ago and am not sure if they still carry them. You can see what the package looks like by clicking HERE.

The boys are fighting, better go. Have a great afternoon!

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

crisis averted

crisis averted

In case you missed the flurry of Tweets/FB posts regarding my recent chai discovery, here's the scoop. My chai... THE chai used in that killer eggnog chai latte recipe has gone missing. I stopped by our local Cub Foods last week only to find there was no longer a spot for it on the shelf!


I've gotten many scrapbooking friends and neighbors addicted to the stuff over the years, enough so it had become tricky even finding Pacific Chai - Spice Chai Latte in stock in the first place. (I think most were like me, stocking up on a can or three when it became available.)

In an act of desperation, I went Cub-hopping only to find bare shelves and unwanted flavors. A faithful FB friend even revealed her local supplier in an attempt to bring relief. I resorted instead to an Amazon order. My SIX CANS arrived this week.


Crisis averted.

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Baby Love | Minnesota Children's Portrait Session

the chair

Meet Baby G, the sweetest little girl to grace my new chair (technically, she's the first ;) She was full of smiles...

big smile

...and talked up a storm! This 6-month old little peanut made the mommy in me melt.


Seriously, who wouldn't melt?

love this




Thank you so much Mom and Dad for braving the elements to make it to our session...


...and for sharing your precious angel.

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Monday, January 25, 2010

for the love of Tweet

I may not always have time to blog but I always have time to Tweet. Here's what you've been missing if you haven't been following along on Twitter:

these are THE BEST

We're on our third box, I kid you not. They taste like Cocoa Puffs but make you feel less guilty with the Cheerios name on the box. Run out and get some NOW or you'll regret it in the morning.

Remember how my husband kidnapped me last week? Well, he did it again:

lunch date w/fgtdman

I suppose it wasn't so much a kidnapping as it was simply an excuse to burn another vacation day. It was also the day he spent hours (like six of them) cleaning and sorting through his stack of bins in the basement. The results? You decide:


Personally, I don't think the broken Rock Band drums count because that's family garbage. Perhaps I'm being a bit harsh... after all, he did end up with a second bag when all was said and done ;)

I'm working to meet my MN sales tax deadline this week. Once that's out of the way I'll be freeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Can't wait.

my life this week

Maybe then I'll go back to taking pictures with my camera instead of the iPhone.

warm, fresh from the oven, Stacey cookie


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Friday, January 22, 2010

snow day

the perfect snow ball

Almost forgot to share these! I think I need to take more outdoor winter shots.

snow day

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

ever felt like the odd man out?

Day 310/365: the weird pretzel

You're at a "group function" - women's retreat, lunchroom, Bible study, scrapbooking event, classroom, football game, neighborhood party, church service - whatever it may be, just little ole' you stepping into the group. They are all talking... but not to you ("the outsider"). You leave feeling rejected, unworthy, and alone.

Having been the outsider/outcast more times than I care to remember, I make it my mission to see that others are welcomed into the group, be it scrapbooking or Bible study. When facing rejection nowadays, God gently reminds me to look around and be observant of others. This gets the focus off of me (stopping the pity party) and on to others where it belongs.

I hear a lot of people (on television and in real life) talking about tolerance, inclusion, and accepting others for who they are as they are. Though I hear a lot of talk, this is what I see:
  • biting sarcasm delivered under the guise of humor
  • slander
  • rejection, ostracism, and avoidance
  • criticism
To makes matters worse, I sometimes see myself behaving this way as well. Bottom line is we can talk until we're blue in the face about accepting others but what are we actually DOING about it? How are we doing with those who may be different from us physically, spiritually, or emotionally? How are we doing with that difficult friend or neighbor? In our everyday contacts and relationships, how are we doing???

Some questions to ponder:
  • Am I being more mindful of others or myself in social settings?
  • Am I treating everyone with the same level of respect in my daily interactions?
  • Am I trying to understand where others are coming from even when I disagree with where they are at?
  • Am I giving others the freedom and respect to come as they are or am I shutting others out?
  • Am I spending more time talking or listening?
If we expect to see change in the world, we need to make changes in the way that we live.

It is absolutely clear that God has called you to a free life. Just make sure that you don't use this freedom as an excuse to do whatever you want to do and destroy your freedom. Rather, use your freedom to serve one another in love; that's how freedom grows. For everything we know about God's Word is summed up in a single sentence: Love others as you love yourself. That's an act of true freedom. If you bite and ravage each other, watch out — in no time at all you will be annihilating each other, and where will your precious freedom be then? Galations 5:13-15 (MSG)

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

eye am still having issues

One week off the meds and my eye problem is back. I think it went away for a couple of days during treatment but the second I began to really taper off of the prednisone, the symptoms crept back in. I have another appointment with my ophthalmologist next week where I'll hopefully get some answers - or at least a referral. In the meantime, I've been keeping myself busy with all sorts of things...

Like experimenting with the coating for Tilly's already delicious secret recipe:

white chocolate

And making a coffee date with Sharon (we are WAY overdue). And completing Andy & Cerrisa's wedding album. (LOVE IT!)

A&C album

And watching the robins (yes, ROBINS) attack every bush in our front yard. One bird was even trying to build a nest on our wreath. (So, one thing I haven't done yet is finish putting away the Christmas stuff.)


And now preparing to file my annual sales tax which requires hours upon hours of paperwork. (ick.)

That's life right now. Exciting, I know. Be back soon...

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Monday, January 18, 2010

it's her 25th birthday

they say it's her birthday

Or so she claims... and I'm not about to argue that one :) I wanted a new photo to post but the only one I could find wasn't a pretty sight. (She was sticking out her tongue and would KILL ME if it landed here.) Stacey and I are the same age for almost six weeks - until my birthday, when I turn 26.

stacey & amy

Happy Birthday, Stacey!

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Happy Birthday G-Man! | Minnesota Children's Portrait Session


I can't believe it was only a year ago the little G-Man was born... a year ago that he looked like this:

newborn g-man

And just months ago, he looked like this...

more gman

...then this:

gman cry

Now, he's a mover and a shaker banger. A toddler. He is ONE this week! Here's the G-Man in all of his Big Boy glory:

hangin' w/monster dog


smile in the tub

a big one


now that's a smile :)


Enjoy your special birthday week :)

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