Saturday, July 17, 2010

birthday celebrations continue

The greatly anticipated 13-year-olds’ party with friends took place last night. Two of Iz’s best friends came by at 5pm and we drove to the mall. After a stop at the food court to fuel them up, a cell phone volume check, and a list of instructions, M and I drove back home... alone.

the mall

At 8pm I picked up these happy shoppers with their bags filled with lip gloss, and other essentials from Sephora.

At this point another friend was able to join them for the festivities planned on the home front.

Festivities included eating cupcakes from Cupcake Jones. This had to be the best cupcake I’ve ever had! Red velvet cake with a buttercream filling and frosting with the most beautiful pink sugared rose pedal on top. I meant to photograph it, but I was so in the moment that I forgot. We all sat around the dining room table and had the best conversation! M and I learned all about the girls’ future career choices. They all had very specific ideas about what they would be doing: a forensic anthropologist, a child psychologist, an anti-racial advocate, and a movie make-up artist. Can you guess which one is my daughter’s career choice?

After changing into flannel pajamas, gathering warm quilts and blankets, the 13-year-olds, clutching a warm bowl of buttery popcorn and their favorite stuffed animals, moved their party out to a tent set up in the backyard for a night of peaceful sleep.

Okay, it’s all true, except for the peaceful sleep part. Lots of giggling ensued. I’m pretty sure I fell asleep for at least a couple hours, and awoke oh so refreshed... NOT!

Monday, July 12, 2010

it’s official...

... I am now the Mother of a teenager.

To celebrate, we enjoyed a day of pampering at a local spa, backyard weenie roasting, cake and ice cream eating, and partying with family and friends.



Every year my Mother-in-law paints a portrait of my daughter. The first six months she painted three... because, well you know how quickly babies change. Don’t they make a nice display? I love the fact that they’re all the same size. I realized when I put these up that we’re missing the three and four year paintings. But no worries, she says she’ll paint them now if I get her some photos.


I made coffee ice cream (my daughter’s request) to go with the chocolate cake. This time the texture was perfection! I’ve discovered that it’s all about proper chilling.


Wynonna stopped by for a brief and reluctant visit during the festivities. She was very afraid of the campfire. As well she should be. Have I mentioned that she has yet to lay an egg during her two years of life?


Happy 13th Birthday Isabel!



The coffee ice cream makes a good dip for these thin, crisp ginger cookies.

Here’s the ice cream recipe... so simple! So delicious!

Coffee Ice Cream
1 cup whole milk (or half and half if you want it richer)
3/4 cup sugar
2-3 Tablespoons instant coffee (I used Starbucks Via)
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer to combine the half and half, sugar and coffee powder until the sugar and coffee are dissolved. About 1-2 minutes on low speed. Stir in the heavy cream and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate several hours. I chilled it overnight.

Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker freezer bowl and mix about 25 minutes or so. Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and freeze for a couple hours.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

an award!

For moi? I'm honored!

A couple weeks ago my friend Sharon over at Knot-Cha-Chá!™ awarded me this lovely Sunshine Award... well, she awarded it to my blog. It’s filled my world with sunshine.

The Sunshine Award is awarded to bloggers whose positivity and creativity inspire others in the blogging world. The rules, once this award is received, are as follows:

1. Post the logo on your blog.
2. Pass the award on to 12 other bloggers.
3. Link to your nominees.
4. Let your nominees know that they have won the award by commenting on their blog.
5. Link to the person who gave you the award.

Now I’d like to share with you the blogs that I am crowning as winners of the Sunshine Award. The bloggers who inspire me are...

... drumroll please...

A Hazy Moon
Bear Swamp Reflections
Honey & Jam
My Own Sweet Thyme
NieNie Dialogues
Prickly Pear Bloom
Raison d'ART
Savory Sweet Life
Sprouted Kitchen
Tales from the Coop Keeper
The Dawn of an Older Age
Wives with Knives

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

six word short story challenge

i scream, you scream

My blog friend Susan at Bear Swamp Reflections has started a weekly challenge. She calls it Six Word Sunday. It’s in the tradition of Ernest Hemingway, who was once challenged to write a short story in six words. His six-word story was: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

Each week Susan chooses a theme. This week’s theme is ice cream. Since I had just posted about homemade ice cream, I found this particularly fun.

Here’s my six word story for this week’s challenge:

Creamy treat: sweet retreat from heat

Do you like a word challenge? Come play along with me.