About the Girl


SIPIDI Saturday

Food & Recipes

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Wrapping of the Presents

Christmas always has a funny way of sneaking up on me. This year was no exception. My graduate classes ended, my job as a substitute teacher took off, and chaos ensued. Despite all the craziness there was a little room for some DIY, my favorite. This time it came in the form of wrapping paper. I love trying different things when I wrap presents and this year I wanted to do it thrifty and fun. My inspiration came from a weekly classified that we get in the mail every week. Though nothing new under the sun, I figured I would wrap presents in newspaper and add a little flair. All it took was a couple snips of paper and some cascading fringe bows to add to the final touch. Cheap, easy, and you'll probably make everyone grin when you walk through the door. Sounds like a perfect way to wrap a present to me :)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Snow is in the air...

I love it when large snowflakes come drifting down outside. It makes me feel all cozy and ready for Christmas! In preparation for the holiday I wanted to make something that would display some snowflakes of my own. When my Grandparents passed away I was given some of my Grandmother's handmade crochet snowflakes. Growing up my Mom always had a few that we put on our own tree, and it was a treasured ritual to put them in a place of honor. Of course I wanted to carry out the same tradition myself. However, I wanted to display them in a way that I could keep them out for longer then just the holiday season. As a result, my stick tree was born! 


- Tall glass vase
- 3-4 pinecones
- 10 or so sticks cut to desired length. I wanted my tree big so the sticks were taller then normal.
- Enough ornaments to fill your tree. I used my Grandmother's snowflakes and sparkly fake fruit.

The tree now nicely adorns the top of my book shelf and I am thinking it needs a strand of lights to give it an extra pop. Guess it's time to take out the Christmas totes and get the rest of the house excited for Christmas :).

Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Pumpkin Patch

For the first time this year my husband and I decided to check out our local pumpkin patch. Neither one of us had ever been to one and we wanted some to carve and make decorative centerpieces. Well....okay, I wanted the pumpkins for centerpieces :). Either way, one crisp Saturday morning we made our way to a local farm and had way too much fun picking out some fancy looking pumpkins. It was the perfect celebration of fall and preparation for Thanksgiving!


For the record the pumpkin on the right is actually Walle, unfortunately he managed to turn out a little like ET. Maybe next year I'll go a more traditional route :)

Saturday, November 10, 2012

SIPIDI Saturday: Best Apple Pie!

Nothing screams fall and Thanksgiving more then a perfect apple pie. Something about the idea of biting into gooey apples, a flaky crust, and crumbly topping is just divine. Now to be perfectly honest I do not eat apple pie for the apples. They are nice add on, but the real delicious goodness comes from the crumble topping and caramel that layers on top. I know I know...so bad...but oh so good! My Mom used to make this in the past and after finding this pin, I knew I had to do it myself! The result was a combination of what my Mom has used and my own creation. Try it yourself, I promise it won't disappoint!

 Apple Pie Recipe

1 Pie Crust
6 Tablespoons butter melted
1/4 Cup packed brown sugar
1 1/4 Cups white flour
6 apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 Teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a medium mixing bowl combine butter, brown sugar and 1 cup flour. Pinch with fingers until large crumbs form. Place in freezer.

In a large bowl, combine apples, sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon and remaining 1/4 cup flour. Stir until everything is dissolved and scrape mixture into pie crust, arranging apples as compactly as possible. Bake for 35 minutes 350 degrees.

Pull pie out and spread crumb topping over apples and bake 30-40 minutes longer until topping is golden brown.

Caramel Recipe 

1/2 Cup brown sugar
3 Tablespoons butter
1 Teaspoon vanilla
1 Can sweet and condensed milk

Boil for 3-5 minutes in the microwave stirring occasionally until thick. Let sit for awhile before pouring over the pie. There have been times when I've added a bit of flour to make it thicker as well.

Okay I will admit I cheated with a store bought crust :)

I like using a variety of apples, makes the flavor more interesting. 
If you even get to the flavor through the crumbs and caramel ;)

My fabulous apple peeler. Found mine at a garage sale, such a great invention!

Even convinced my husband to operate the machinery 

Perfect slices!

Getting ready to mix

All ready to go!

The crumbs have been added and baked.

Now for the caramel


Oh yummm!!! The smell alone is to die for. Happy eating!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Craft Fair Fun

In addition to starting a blog, being a substitute teacher, and taking graduate classes...I also decided to do my first craft fair! Not sure what I was thinking when I signed up three weeks beforehand, but either way I'm excited. What could be more fun then tables and tables of crafts?!?! If you happen to be in the area and want to have a little craft fair fun come on down!

Baldwinsville Christian Academy
7321 Van Buren Road
Baldwinsville, NY 13027

Here's a little taste of what I will be selling!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

A Tasty Treat

Forget tricks, I'm all about treats! What could be better then a tasty treat for Halloween? An old co-worker of mine introduced to me to these scrumptious goodies awhile ago. Since I'm a fan of pumpkin and cookies, the combination is just about perfect. Give them a try them and I am sure you will agree!

Pumpkin Cookies
by: Noelle H.

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup solid packed pumpkin (I just used the whole can)
1 egg
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda

Cream butter, sugar and pumpkin and then add the egg. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Place rounded teaspoon size cookies on ungreased cookie sheet or your silpat if you have one.

Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes. Makes about 3 dozen depending on how big you make them.

Brown Sugar Icing

3 tbls butter
4 tsp milk
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup confectioner sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla

Cook butter, milk and brown sugar until dissolved. Cool a few minutes and add vanilla and confectioner sugar. Keep over low heat while stirring to be able to drizzle icing. Icing will thicken quickly once it starts to cool. It may take more than one batch of icing to frost one batch of cookies. I tend to be more "eat the frosting, who needs the cookie?" kind of girl, so doubling is a must :)

Happy eating!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

SIPIDI Saturday: Earring Organizer

Siippeeedeee...siippiiidddiii...sseeppee....huh? What in the world is SIPIDI Saturday? If you're wondering, you would not be the first (just ask my very confused tech guy, aka: the husband). SIPIDI Saturday or Saw It Pinned It Did It Saturday, is all about creating something off of Pinterest. You know, that place that everyone is addicted to and loves despite trying their best not to. Like the general masses, I am no exception. It might be a little unhealthy, but so is ice-cream and you don't see anyone giving that up anytime soon ;). I thought this would be the perfect motivation to complete all those awesome projects I am always pinning but never manage to get to. Perhaps it'll motivate you too!

Today’s project is super easy and adorable. I love earrings, but I have never had a good place to display them. Anything I have seen in the stores has run anywhere from $20-$30, but I wanted a less expensive version. When I saw this pin on Pinterest, I knew I had found the solution! Here's how you can make your own!

- Embroidery hoops (Hobby Lobby had various sizes ranging $1-$3 depending on the size)
- Doilies (I had a few from various garage sales or that had been given to me. You can find them at your local antique store or the Dollar store)

 1. Grab your loop and separate the pieces.

2. Drape your doily over the inside hoop and place the outside loop over it. Fit the pieces together. 

3. Pull the edges of the doily around the outside to get it perfectly taunt. If you have some hangover that is totally fine. It actually works great if you have a lot of hoop earrings!

The end result is a great holder that can hold a lot of earrings and looks adorable on your wall!

As you can see, mine is a little loaded down :). Guess it is time to make another one!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The T-Shirt Blanket

The beauty of living in upstate New York is that you experience all four seasons, each unique and special in their own way. I can always tell just when it is about to change too, it just smells different. Often just a slight whiff of tantalizing scent letting you know change is in the air.

Fall is our season now and with it are the hordes of people who love sweaters and leather boots, apples and crunchy leaves. I'll admit to being a fan, but I find that there is nothing worse then a rainy fall day. Cold and dreary, it makes a day feel drab and depressing. To combat these fall blues I find I must create diversions to avert the impending gloom. My usual cure is curling up under a warm blanket and reading a new book. Now, I have the perfect blanket to curl up under and I am going to show you how to make your own!

If you are anything like me you probably have a stash of old t-shirts hidden away in an attic box, pushed to the back of your closet, or perhaps stuffed in the drawers of your dresser. Treasures of years ago that offer glimpses in your past, or a lingering idea that one day you will fit into them again! I had the same idea until I spent the summer moving to a new city (moving does absolute wonders to purging through your stuff fyi!). When I found several t-shirts that I knew I needed to get rid of, I decided to come up with a project to use with them instead. The result, a blanket of t-shirts.

As fair warning, this is time consuming and if I did it again I would use squares and stay away from really stretchy shirts. They present problems in the long run.

-About 15 t-shirts. Really just depends on how big you want to make it. I had to use a few of my husbands big ones to make my blanket as large as I wanted it to be.
- Rotary cutter (saved my life)
- Sewing machine and thread
- Fabric to sew on the back when you are finished.

First you start out by cutting out millions of triangles. I had a plastic triangle that I used with my rotatory cutter to give me the exact same triangle each time. The end result was about 230 pieces which I mapped out on our living room floor in the pattern I wanted.

Then came the painstaking process of sewing together all the triangles into squares and then all the squares into rows. That took a lllllooooonnnggggg time!

After the rows are complete you can sew them all together. Be careful here and make sure they are all in the right order. If not your pattern will be completely messed up. Once that is done sew a back to it and you have finished! I used some flannel I found at a craft store a few dollars a yard and it took about four yards. The amount you need will depend mostly on how big yours is. Hopefully the end result will look something like this...

In no way is my blanket perfect however, I kind of like the imperfections in it. The points do not always meet, squares are crooked and it bunches at the wrong places. So often I try to be perfect at whatever I do, and it is nice to not worry about the imperfections. Instead I enjoy the warmth it provides and the memories it brings up as I look at different pieces. The best part of course is curling up with a favorite hot drink, a few journal articles, new book and get all warm and cozy on this rainy fall day!

Sounds like a good plan to me!