Saturday, November 21, 2009

Can't wait!

Well, the holidays are here this coming week, ready or not :)
It has definitely snuck up on me, but I am excited- I love to bake Thanksgiving and Christmas treats...

Especially iced sugar cookies!!! You can make so many different variations - How about those Thanksgiving dinner cookies above??? Too cute! 

And my neice and nephew love to help their "Aunt Ashy" in the kitchen... they are so funny and sweet!
So, I looked around online (like I always do) for fun, new ideas and look what I found!

The most precious sugar cookies ever.. for both Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Where did I come across these you ask??  Well a blog post directed me to them on the blog, A Wedding Story.  She too (Elizabeth) loves Eleni's "playfully unique cookies" and she is quite talented in the cookie decorating department herself! Go see for yourself!

Anyway, I can't wait to get busy on some cookies soon- I will share the outcome of course!

Until then though, have a good weekend!!

<3  Ash

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Spotlight: Chotda

I was browsing along on Flickr when I came across Chotda's photostream! You must go see her beautiful work- it's so colorful and she photographs so many different subjects...

from heirloom tomatoes,

and cake,

to gorgeous scenery,

and even puppies!

She has a blog too, The Scent of Green Bananas... you may have heard of it, but it's new to me, and I'm so glad I found it so I can just soak up the beauty of her images....

They make me want to paint, right away!

Go see her blog- but also go see her on flickr... you can browse through all of her sets/collections and really get a good look :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

I'm here! I haven't forgotten about my blog- I have just been occupied with other things... work, school and my internship being the most time consuming. And let me just add, there are only 4 weeks until I graduate!! (Even less really, because of Thanksgiving break). I am soo excited and ready. It's been a long time coming and I can't believe I will finally be DONE with school :)

Now, for these yummy cupcakes... I made them for my boyfriend's birthday, he just turned 24 also!  Remember his cake last year... well he tried to get me to do something very specific this year too-

 Boone Pickens Stadium...

Right after I finished laughing at him, I told him no. I enjoy a challenge, but like I have the time right now to construct THAT. 

So, he got these instead...

They aren't exactly a stadium, but he liked them :)

And it gave me a chance to try out a recipe I'd saved a while back.  They were pretty easy and tasted like a peanut butter cup, mmm!

Here's the recipe if you would like to try them:

Peanut Butter Cupcakes
adapted from TLC Cooking

1/3 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cups milk

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 18 standard (2-1/2-inch) muffin pan cups with foil baking cups.
2. Beat butter and peanut butter in large bowl with electric mixer at medium speed until smooth; beat in sugars until well mixed. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
3. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Add flour mixture to peanut butter mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling 2/3 full. Bake 23 to 25 minutes or until cupcakes spring back when touched and toothpicks inserted in centers come out clean.
5. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes to racks; cool completely before frosting.

***I filled my cupcakes before frosting with a little bit of a peanut butter and butter mixture.  Warm about a 1/2 cup of peanut butter and 2 tbsp of butter in the microwave and with a piping bag, fill each cupcake.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting
4 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 to 5 tablespoons milk, divided
3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
Combine powdered sugar, cocoa, 4 tablespoons milk and peanut butter in large bowl. Beat with electric mixer at low speed until smooth, scraping bowl frequently. Beat in additional 1 tablespoon milk until of desired spreading consistency. Spread or pipe onto cupcakes.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Just take a deep breath...

Can I please just run away and go to a place of peace?

This week has started off terrible and has yet to get any better :(
  I don't mean to complain, and this blog is not to vent my personal thoughts, but I have had enough lately.

My weekend I mentioned before... you know, the one I was looking so forward to? Well, it turned out bad in the end... really bad.  Someone stole my cell phone and charged almost $800 onto my account.

Why are people so mean sometimes?  I can't even begin to wrap my mind around it.

Anyway, the worst part is that the cell phone company might try to hold me responsible!  I am just sick about it.

Ok- enough about that... and I won't even get into the rest. 
I am just going to pray things will get better (I know they will...) And I'm also just going to think happy thoughts (Or I might lose it, haha)

*The image above is from a new blog I've found (well new to me).  It's called FoodbeamYou really should go have a look... there are some great photos and recipes.

Well, have a good night.

P.S. If I ever happen to find your phone, I promise to return it safe and sound.