2.25.2012

merry christmas finn

This is Finn's baby quilt. It was made for him by G's aunt. You can probably tell by the look of it that Finn really loves this blanket. Calls it his cosy blankie and sleeps with it every night. But its days are numbered. Soon we will pack it away for memory's sake, but not just because it is falling apart. Truth be told, for some time now, the blanket has barely covered his growing body. Recognizing way back in 2010 that the poor child needed a new quilt, I thought, 'Hey, I can make a quilt', and, with no previous quilting experience, embarked on making this quilt for Finn. It was intended to be his Christmas present...Christmas 2010, that is. But my cocky, 'I can make anything' attitude got the better of me. Quilting really isn't as easy as it looks, and when Finn unwrapped a half-finished quilt that Christmas morning, I promised I would finish it before the new year rolled in. Never happened. The quilt was stashed away in the hopes it would magically finish itself. That never happened either. Last night, as I tucked Finn into bed, he complained that his feet were cold. Looking down to see what could be the cause of such cold feet, I could easily see that poor blanket was a good five inches too short. 'Suck it up and finish that quilt already!' I scolded myself. And I did! 
Today I finished it! It feels like a huge weight has been lifted.
No reason for those tootsies to be cold tonight! 
Merry Christmas Finn!

2.24.2012

this moment

I think I can, I think I can
inspired by soulemama

2.17.2012

this moment

play that funky music...
inspired by soulemama

2.14.2012

be mine

'Nobody has ever measured, not even poets, how much the heart can hold.'
- Zelda Fitzgerald

2.12.2012

sunday in the kitchen

It's Valentine's Day on Tuesday. Just a friendly reminder to all you lovers out there! And in the spirit, the boys and I made a themed birthday cake for gramma. I intended to make a chocolately cheesecake topped with a little lovey dovey flair. I charged those boys of mine with the task of making chocolate hearts that were to decorate the top of the cake. A lovely, festive topper. Or they would have been lovely...had they made it to the cake. Those boys of mine worked with such care and precision on their little decorations. They set them aside to harden and went about their day - a little snow time, a little play time...and a little sneaky chocolatey nibble? Oh yes, before I knew it the hearts had all disappeared. Nothing left but a chocolatey outline on the corners of Finn's mouth. "I didn't do it!" he argued, fully prepared to throw his brother under the bus before I showed him the evidence all over his face. Busted - both of them! With no chocolate left to make more, my cake was heartless! But still filled with lots of love!
In case you would like to add a little heart to your cakes, they are really easy to make - just melt some chocolate, put it in a piping bag (I make my piping bags out of parchment paper) and squeeze out the chocolate into the shape of hearts. 
The cheesecake that was to hold those tiny hearts?
A vegan chocolate cheesecake marbled with a lovely red surprise - beets! That's right, I used beets to turn that cheesecake a rich, Valentine's Day colour. Beets are one of my favourites - roasted, raw, pickled, juiced, and yes, often added to my baking when I want a natural, red velvety colour. 
Vegan Chocolate Red Velvet Marbled Cheesecake
1 12oz. package of silken tofu
1 8 oz. container of soy cream cheese
3/4 C sugar
1/3 C milk
1 tbsp potato starch
Place ingredients in a food processor and mix until combined. Remove 1/2 mixture into a bowl and add 1 C chocolate chips that have been melted. To the rest of the mixture in the processor, add two well-cooked beets and 1 tbsp ground flax seed mixed with three tbsp hot water. Process until beet is completely mixed in. Pour into crust pressed into a springform pan (the crust I used is the crust recipe used in this pie - I substituted the nuts for pumpkin seeds). Pour chocolate batter on top and gently swirl through the beet mixture using a fork. Bake at 350F for about 30-40 minutes - or until it is set. 

2.11.2012

sewing for me...just me

Come on fellow sewers, put away every project you are making for someone else and take a moment to make something just for you! You deserve it! I know your sewing tables are heaped with projects for kids, family, friends. They'll still be there tomorrow. Go on and dig into that secret stash of special fabrics you've been keeping for yourself and make yourself a little something special. Like these adorable bloomers...so fun, so cute, so super easy to make!
The pattern is the Madeleine Mini Bloomers from Collette. I've been wanting to make these for quite awhile now so today was the day I put all of my other projects aside and just did it! I adjusted the pattern a bit - I didn't make the buttonholes for ribbon as I wanted to use elastic in the legs for a little more give. I also used a cotton material as I find cotton to be so much easier to work with. I was so happy with the way they turned out - so happy that I made a second pair out of a funky vintage fabric I had laying around.

2.10.2012

2.05.2012

sunday in the kitchen

I've always encouraged my kids to help out in the kitchen. I've been determined to teach them to cook for themselves for some time now and they seem to have successfully mastered a few simple dishes like porridge, pasta, and grilled sandwiches. All these skills will not only serve them well once they fly the coop, but presently gives G and I a little time to sleep in on weekends. Not a bad deal at all, if you ask me. So when Nate asked this morning if he could be in charge of making Sunday night's supper, I could barely contain the 'heck yeah!' that quickly sprang from my lips. 
While he developed a menu...
and began preparing the meal...
I poured myself a glass of wine, took my time making this incredible pie...
and pulled out the art supplies for an afternoon of family craft time before sitting down to a lovely meal that I didn't have to make!
It was plain and simple and just perfect!