Saturday, October 31, 2009

so I can see


Give me your eyes for just one second

Give me your eyes so I can see

Everything that I keep missing

me your love for humanity

Give me your arms for the broken hearted

The ones that are far beyond my reach

Give me your heart for the once

Give me your eyes so I can see

Lord, give my your eyes

So I can see

Brandon Heath

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pumpkin Spice Latte

There it is. Isn’t it gorgeous? Sigh. Oh, how I love thee Pumpkin Spice Latte. Warm and yummy. Definitely pumpkin-y, But not too pumpkin-ish. Cinnamon. Whipped cream. What’s not to love? Even my kids do (and they despise coffee).
One teensy problem- I only go to Starbucks when I happen to have a gift card to “spend.” Which is seldom in the fall. And that happens to be the only time Starbucks offers the delicacy known as pumpkin spice latte.
It soon became apparent that the only way some pumpkin spice would cross my palate would be if I made it myself. After searching for a recipe that closely resembles it and combining several, this is what I came up with.
Just Like Starbucks Pumpkin Spice LatteMakes 1-2 servings
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons canned pumpkin
2 tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute – adjust to taste
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup strong brewed coffee (or 1/4 cup of espresso if you have an espresso machine)
Directions:In a saucepan stir together milk, pumpkin and sugar. Cook and stir over medium heat until steaming. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and pumpkin pie spice, transfer to a blender and process for 15 seconds or until foamy. I don’t usually bother with the blender and just whip the mixture really well with a wire whisk.
Pour into a large mug or two mugs if you decide to share. Add the coffee or espresso on top.
Optional: (But don’t even think about skipping this step. I mean it). Top with whipped cream and sprinkle pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, or cinnamon on top.
mmmmm. Can you smell that? Because I can and I need another one.
Please visit Tasty Tuesday and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for lots more fabulous recipes.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Dear Fall: I Am Miffed

Seriously. Already with the snow? The wind? The frigid single digit weather? Did you have to be such a wimp? While we were still mourning the summer that never came, you conceded defeat and let winter have its way. A mere 9 days after you arrived. Nine. Days.

Rude. Thoughtless. Inconsiderate.

But then you show me this:

October 037

And this:

October 040

And Lo, even this:

October 044

And I crack a smile. A little one. Poor sweet scarecrow is now a snowcrow?

So, all is not lost. We pull out the sweaters, slippers and cocoa. And prepare for winter to reveal God’s Glory anew.

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heavens. Ecclesiastes 3:1

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Just a Little Reminder:

Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings. Psalm 17:8

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake

We've been making this cake for at least 15 years. It is very easy and fast. We're especially fond of it because no frosting is required. And we're not so crazy about the frosting. It makes a large cake and if it's too much for your family, just freeze it for later. Wrap individual slices in plastic wrap or wax paper and place them in a zipper freezer bag. They'll keep for at least 6 months in the freezer and still be just as delicious as day one. I hope you enjoy trying it!


3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon each of salt, ground allspice & ground cloves
4 eggs
1 can pumpkin (16 oz)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Combine dry ingredients in a large mixer bowl until well blended. Add remaining ingredients except chocolate chips. Mix well. Stir the chocolate chips in by hand. Pour into a greased bundt pan. Bake 1 hour & 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes and then cool completely on a wire rack. Dust with powdered sugar when cool, if desired.

Please visit Tasty Tuesday and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for lots more great recipes.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Cream Apple Pie

My great-grandmother Nellene 'invented' this pie. Apparently, it was her claim to fame. It was and always has been, my dad's favorite. As a toddler he would sneak bites while it cooled. And then try to blame it on a mouse!! His grandmother Nellene thought he was hilarious.

Nellene and her daughters kept the recipe in an impenetrable, undisclosed facility under 24 hour armed guard. To be shared with only a few select chosen ones. And thus it would have remained for ever and ever. Amen. Until it eventually ended up with me. Um... Turns out, covert ops is not my thing.

And that was the end of the top secret recipe.

It's really simple and I've never seen another recipe like it. Please be sure to use golden delicious apples and real whipping cream. Trust me. I've tried other apple varieties and using lesser fat dairy products. With disastrous results.

The one thing you can substitute is the sugar. I make my dad's pies with Splenda now. The scoundreal still tries to pilfer some pie and implicate the mouse. Poor mouse gets blamed for everything:)


1 unbaked pie shell
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
4-6 golden delicious apples
1/4 to 3/4 cup sugar for top of pie
Nutmeg for dusting, to taste
1/2 pint whipping cream

Put crust in a 9" pie pan and crimp edges. Stir together the flour and sugar. Gently spread in bottom of crust.

Peel, core and very thinly slice applies and arrange on top of flour/sugar mixture. Sprinkle with a little more sugar, according to how sweet or tart your apples are. Dust lightly with nutmeg.

Pour the whipping cream over all, trying to get all the apple slices submerged in cream.

Bake @ 350 until the crust is golden and apples are done, about 50-60 minutes.

p.s. It's really good for breakfast. Not that I've eaten it for breakfast or anything.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Organizing Your Fabric Stash

I have entered a brave new world. A world where all the fabrics are neatly stacked and sorted by color. Folded. Stacked. And sorted by color.

Oh, the happy. Words cannot describe how much easier it is to find a particular color or fabric when working on a project!

And those pretty little stacks of color-coordinated bliss fabric just look so cute!

Just one word of warning.... when you get all your fabric shelved in neat little columns of color, like this:

You will suddenly have empty spaces where fabric once lived.

Which you will want to fill with more neatly folded stacks of fabric.

But that's okay. Because now you can fold, sort, and keep it tidily in it's place.

This video is just precious... she really is enthusiastic about fabric folding! For more tutorials on organizing your stash, type 'how to fold fabric' into your search engine. You'll find plenty of folding and stacking info.

Please visit Works-For-Me-Wednesday for more great cleaning tips and ideas.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Foolproof-Never-Fail Pie Crust

So next week, I'm going to share my famous, most requested pie recipe. It's one of those top secret, handed down for generations, pretty big deal in our family kind of recipes.

But before we get into all that, it occured to me to post a pie crust recipe first. Just in case.

This crust has never let me down no matter what. And the best part? It keeps 3 weeks in the refrigerator, 1 year in the freezer.

Yep, I only have to do the measuring, the cutting, the mixing.....ONCE A YEAR. Dear recipe: I think I love you.

I'm much more likely to throw a pie together if all I have to do for a crust is roll it out. A tiny bit more work than store bought crusts, but there's no comparison in the quality.

Form 6 portions of dough.

Wrap each piece of dough in plastic wrap. Freeze or refrigerate in a zipper bag.

Thaw and roll out. Just like store bought (except better).

Foolproof Never Fail Pie Crust

4 cups flour 1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 3/4 cups Crisco
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 egg

1. Mix flour, salt and sugar.

2. Cut in Crisco until finely mixed (mixture will begin to stick together).

3. In a one cup measuring cup, beat egg; add vinegar; fill to one cup with cold water. Add 3/4 cup of liquids to well in center of flour mixture. Mix, using remaining liquid as needed.

4. Divide into 6 portions. Put each dough portion onto center of plastic wrap. Bring ends of wrap over dough and wrap tightly. Place in a container or zipper bag and store in fridge for up to 3 weeks or freezer for up to 1 year.

5. Crust is ready to use after 1 hour in the refrigerator.

6. Thaw frozen dough before using. Unwrap dough, roll and use for any recipe requiring pie pastry/crust.

Posted to Tasty Tuesday and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Weekend Boutique

Time for Friday's Weekend Boutique!! Please drop by the Pretty Organized Palace to find lots of talented and crafty people.

Here are a few of the bits and bobbins available in my Etsy shop.

The last Hoot 'n Holler pair. The others have all flown off to their new perches homes.
The last pumpkin runner.
Hand crocheted spa set in a vintage basket...includes handmade minty rose Shea butter soap.
Crocheted neck warmer / capelet. I wear mine at work to keep warm sitting at the computer.

This Queen Anne's Lace scarf is one of my favorites! I found the pattern among my Grammy's papers. It was originally intended to be made as a thread crochet edging on sheets and pillowcases. I love making it into scarves instead!!


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