Friday, October 28, 2011

Upcycled book card holder

I took an old book that I had and created this beauty for my friend's birthday! He could take it to his office and use it as a business card holder {those aren't his actual business cards, I just made those for effect} or he could use it at home as a bill/mail sorter. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of the final project, after I had glued it onto a small piece of stained wood.

You should try this one! It's super easy and very low cost.

{1} Get a book. If it's hardcover, get rid of the cover. If it's paperback, you can leave the cover on.
{2} Open up the book to the first page and start folding each page in half lengthwise. Continue doing this for all the pages in the book.
{3} If you are going to glue the book to a piece of wood, trim down the front and back cover to fit your piece of wood. Glue the book to the wood with wood glue.
{4} Smile and admire your work :)

I got my instructions from Andrea Rodgers website here, where she has wonderful photos of each step. Let me know if you make this one!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

No-Flour Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chunk Cookies

My Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine comes faithfully to my mailbox every month despite the fact that I'm pretty sure my 2-year subscription ended at least a year ago {shhhh!}. So I am enjoying my fair *free* share of Rachael's recipes.

One that stood out to me was a no-flour cookie recipe from the October 2011 issue. I get super gung-ho for recipes that call for only a handful of ingredients, and I dish out super duper kudo points if they're ingredients I normally have on hand in my kitchen. This recipe had a mere 5 ingredients, all of which I already had {sa-weet!}. I had to try it.

Today is a special day for hubbs and me because my best friend is doing my ultrasound to see if our second baby is a boy or girl! KB is an ultrasound tech in an OB-Gyn office and she loves peanut butter and chocolate together. I thought these cookies would be a great way to tell her thank you.

I made these with semisweet chocolate chips instead of chunks.

{How to be a good friend: return your friend's Tupperware after washing and filling with something tasty}

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chunks

Beat first 4 ingredients together. Stir in chocolate. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough 2 inches apart on parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheets. Makes 16 cookies.

Ok, it seriously does not get any easier! Five ingredients and 10 minute bake time?! What more could you ask for? This would be great to make with the kiddos or for those that are baking beginners.

These turned out pretty yummy! I would like to see what a teaspoon of vanilla would do next time I make these...

And by the way, we're having another boy!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

"Birds of a Feather" Wedding Cupcakes

My sweet friend from college was planning her wedding when she asked me to make cupcakes for the celebration. I was so flattered and excited to be a part of her special day! Crystal is someone I have a huge admiration for because of her creative craftiness and keen eye for pretty, vintage things. Her wedding was pretty much all DIY and so gorgeous! iDropPhoto took the above picture of my cupcakes and took many more beautiful photos of the ceremony and reception.

{They are seriously so adorable!}

{Argyles and charming!}

{Crystal's handmade brooch bouquet}

{The best seats in the house}

{At the reception tables}

{A sitting area in the back of the reception. A great spot to chill and drool over some pretty cupcakes in the back right corner!}

SUCH a beautiful wedding and beautiful pictures to capture it all! Now here's my iPhone pics. Don't laugh!

{They made all the cake stands with plates and candlesticks}

{I got a special spot in their program! Made me blush}

Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate buttercream frosting
Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting
Cocoa coconut cupcakes with coconut buttercream frosting and topped with toasted coconut
Hummingbird cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and topped with pecans

Hummingbird cupcakes aren't as popular here in California as in the south. They include banana, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, pecans, and pineapple. My husband says it tastes a lot like banana nut bread, which I thought was perfect for guests that like their cupcake with much less sweetness.

Congratulations Luke and Crystal! Thank you so much for letting me celebrate with you on your beautiful wedding day!