cookie of the week

Andrew just couldn't wait another minute. He reached over right before the photo and grabbed a bite. Sometimes it is all about the blog! Libby's pick this week. I can't say they are that great, guys. My kids love them, but I don't think they have that much flavor. I do think they are pretty though.

Chocolate Swirls:

2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1 TBLS milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips, melted and slightly cooled.

Combine sugar, butter, egg, milk and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. Add flour, baking powder and salt. Beat until soft dough forms. Divide dough in half. Combine half of dough with the melted chips. Beat until well blended. On lightly floured wax paper, roll chocolate dough into 1/8 thick rectangle. On second sheet of lightly floured wax paper roll remaining dough the same way. Carefully place one on top of the other. Roll dough, jelly roll style, starting with long side. (peel off wax paper when rolling.) Chill 2-3 hours until firm. Cut roll into 1/4 inch slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheet, bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Only one more cookie of the week. Our countdown is on!

My sister #1 is driving with sister #2 to my house! Tomorrow we are leaving to meet our mother for a girls weekend. I cant wait!! Lots of fun to be had. (Shelly D explained a little of what we will be doing).
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!!!


A little sewing took place over the weekend. I purchased this fabric on super sale from Joann fabrics to try this skirt. 1/2 of a yard of each. I think it cost me $2.47! How awesome is that?! Really, really easy. If you know how to baste and gather, then you can do this. If not, this might help . Basically, it is four ruffles sewn together.
I didn't have enough fabric to make the last tier the same width, hence the reason for the small bottom ruffle.
libby, age 9, favorite subject in school: math


Measure the child's waist and add 10 inches plus seam allowance for the first tier
Second tier: width of first tier plus 20 inches and seam allowances
Third tier: width of second tier plus 20 inches and seam allowances
Fourth tier: width of third tier plus 20 inches and seam allowances
The depth of each tier I used, is about 5 inches plus seam widths, with the exception of the first tier. For the first tier, you need to allow for the casing ( for the elastic). I added 2 inches.

Lots of options with this skirt. You can make each ruffle longer so that the skirt would be fuller. Or, you can vary the width of the tiers to make it longer or shorter. I think it would be great to piece together lots of different fabrics from your stash. It definitely could also be made in an adult size.

You have to sew together pieces of fabric to make long widths. I sewed each width, then gathered the fabric, then sewed each piece together. Made the casing, inserted the elastic, and finishing by sewing one side seam.

I started this post this afternoon, and seven hours later, I am publishing it! (I did have to stop for after school, homework, dinner, baseball game, showers and books) However, I had a really hard time explaining what I did. Hopefully, you can follow what I did here. If not drop me an e-mail, I would be happy to help.

school picnic day

Yesterday was School Picnic Day. Most people head to our local amusement park, however, for various reasons, we opted to do something else. First, we rode the incline to the top of Mt. Washington and had lunch. The view of our city is amazing. That is the point where the 3 rivers join. The Monongahela, the Allegheny and the Ohio. Unfortunately, the fountain on the tip was being repaired.
We then headed to the zoo.
The polar bears are our newest addition.
Of course, the sharks are an all time favorite. What's that you say? What am I wearing?
Why it is my new skirt, I made, using Erin's twirly skirt tutorial. So, so easy! Honestly, anyone can make this! Erin has made this very easy, even for a beginner. It took me less than an hour. Straight lines to cut and sew, and an elastic waistband. I only used a yard of the main fabric. I am already dreaming up all sorts of new skirts to add to my wardrobe. Thanks, Erin!

Back to our day. After the zoo, we went to the bookstore and all chose new books. Well, not me I actually knit a few rows. Then met hubby/daddy for dinner. Two meals out in one day! Wow, now who had a picnic of a day?!


I started this baby sweater last November. I finally finished it yesterday. The baby that it was being made for is now too big to wear this. However, we have friends that had their first baby, a sweet baby girl. This sweater will now go to her. I ordered this pattern and yarn, last summer, from Knot Another Hat. The pattern is a Sirdar, lace-edge cardigan which also has directions for a round neck cardigan. I used Debbie Bliss Cashmerino , 4 balls for 6-12 month,size 3 needles.
I love to order from Knot Another Hat because it seems that the yarn arrives at your doorstep the moment after it is ordered. A good thing to remember during the summer months when the children are home. One less errand is always a good thing for us!

cookies and things

Charlies pick this week for cookie of the week. They don't look so bad, do they?
They stunk! Total flop! I like you all too much to share this recipe! :) I just wanted to post a picture to document that I actually did make my cookies, and Charlie did have a turn!

I also got tagged by tiennie knits, magnusmog and life with, with the 7 random things. I feel like I am a little boring, but I will give it a try.

1. I don't love chocolate. I will eat it, but never have those chocolate cravings. Therefore, I love when my children pick a chocolate cookie for me to make. I know it won't call my name from the cookie jar like the other cookies do.

2. I have known my husband since I was 13. We never "liked" each other in Jr. high school, we were just friends. My family moved away when I was a sophomore in high school and I ran into him years later in San Francisco where I was living.

3. I love to sing, but am terrible! I sing and dance while making dinner and my kids think I am crazy!

4. I could eat chips and salsa all day.

5. I lived in Chicago after graduating from college working for Merrill Lynch. I wanted to be a stock broker, and was studying to take my Series 7 exam when I.......

6. Got hired by United Airlines to become a Flight Attendant. I flew International and Domestic, and was based in San Francisco.

7. All three of my children were born Cesarean section.

O.k, I guess that wasn't that bad. I'm not going to tag anyone, but feel free to play along.

Thanks so much for all of the compliments on my Hanne Falkenberg. You guys are the best!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

hanne falkenberg, ballerina

Please be aware: too many photos ahead. My hubby took his job as weekend photographer very seriously, and took many, many photos. I think he really enjoyed clicking away, and even gave me props!
So, I bring you my completed Hanne Falkenberg, ballerina swing jacket. This is actually the third ballerina that I have made. My first one can be seen here, the second one here. Obviously, you can tell that I love this sweater if I have made three and am considering making a fourth. Unlike many sweaters that I have knit in the past, that sit folded on my closet shelf, these get their wear! I wear them as my coat, and they look great dressed up as well.
I'm not going to lie, this sweater is not easy. It is not the knitting part that is difficult, it is reading the pattern. The most important thing to remember is to read ahead. You MUST read ahead. I also have to keep track of the row I am on. I am sure Hanne does not! It is knit completely in garter stitch, all in one piece. Short rows are what give the this sweater the shape and design.
The Hanne Falkenberg collection are all sold as kits,and can be purchased here. The ballerina, comes in two different sizes. S/M, M/L. This is the s/m, as is the second one I made. The first one I made, I made a m/l. There is really no way to modify the size, only the sleeve length can be modified.
I know these kits are not inexpensive, they are actually quite an investment. But I feel like I definitely get my money out of them. I decided a while ago, that most of the sweaters that I make for myself should be something that could be worn as a coat. Otherwise, I just don't wear them.
On size 3 needles, it is not a fast knit. I started this February 27th, and did have to push myself to finish it. But, I am so glad I did. I should still be able to get some wear out of it this spring with the cool mornings and evenings.
My mother is currently knitting her fifth hanne. We had a little photo shoot while I was in Florida. One mermaid here, one here, and a Tivoli here. My mother was so cute during her photo shoot, and danced while making little chi chi chi noises. I hope I always remember that!This is my favorite photo, I was giggling the whole time. My sister made the butterfly. Hopefully she will post photos of it soon.
MiMi, do you have a blog? I would love to watch your progress. If you have any questions while making it, I will be happy to help. (That goes for you to Sunne, and anyone else that decides to make one).
Now I am off to tackle something else in my sidebar.
Hope every one is enjoying their week!


It is women who touch many lives with their hands.Happy Mothers Day to my incredible Mother who has touched not only her daughters lives in so many ways, but also so many other lives as well.

And to all the women out there who won't, don't or can't have children, Happy Mothers Day to you too. Believe me, you have touched the lives of nieces and nephews and/or friends children with your heart and hands too.

Have a lovely, beautiful creative day!


Well, it is finished!
Yes, I did meet my silly deadline on time. My hanne is currently drying outside in the sunlight.
It was so gratifying to bind off all 336 stitches. It was like my little size 3 needles were screaming "I'm Free".
I will try to steal a few moments from my photographer (hubby) for a decent photo shoot, some time over the weekend.
I have some friends coming for lunch and bringing takeout from my favorite restaurant. Of course, we will have to open some wine so that I can celebrate!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

i cheated

This was Andrews week to choose cookie of the week. He is so easy to please. I just had to ask him if he could pick betty crocker brownies, and of course he said, sure. Lets face it, a girls got to do what a girls got to do. No time for measuring ingredients when you have a deadline to meet. However, time must be put aside to take pictures of your cookies/brownies and post them on your blog. :) And when it comes to your family, you can't be a total slacker!
I have made a lot of progress on my Hanne, and think it should be finished by friday. I have not had to pull an all-knitter yet, however, I did knit until 1:30 a.m. last night. I was, of course, up at the crack of dawn, so I am dragging a bit today.
I think an iced coffee and brownie should help this!

wip, cookie of the week

I feel as if I have been knitting for miles on my Hanne. I timed it, and each ridge (2 rows) takes me 20 minutes! That is only 3 ridges per hour! I am bound and determined to finish this project, I just have to get it off of my needles. I am actually so tired of working on it. When that happens, I usually give myself some sort of deadline ( I know, a little weird) so I have given myself one more week. I am putting down the paint brush, the staple gun and will try to put the sewing machine out of sight in order to complete this. Hey, I may even have to pull an all-knitter, as my husband calls them!
I wanted to show you how this is worked. It is knit in all one piece with very little finishing, only sewing the sleeve. That is my favorite things about this. When you are finished knitting, you are practically ready to wear it. The right front, front bands and wrist bands are what is left for me to knit. Which doesn't sound like a lot, but on size 3 needles, it is!

Libby chose our cookie of the week. Vanilla Blondies. Someone (Ms. Anonymous) left a comment on my last cookie of the week, asking if I used butter or shortening. If the recipe calls for butter or margarine, I always use butter. I tried this recipe with a non-hydrogenated shortening by Earth Balance, purchased from whole foods. They were delicious. Thanks Ms. Anonymous for giving me the idea!
Vanilla Blondies
1/2 cup butter or shortening
1/2 bag of vanilla chips
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
2 cups bread flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup vanilla baking chips
Lightly grease 13*9 baking pan. In a small saucepan, combine butter and 1/2 bag of vanilla chips, melt over med heat, stirring constantly, remove from heat, and cool slightly. Transfer to mixing bowl, stir in sugars and vanilla, add eggs, one at a time, add flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in chips. Spread evenly in pan. bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes.
It may be a little quiet over here. You know what I will be doing!
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

hold it

First of all, I would like to thank you for all of my vanity love! It is truly one of my favorite corners of my home now. There is something about sitting to put on your makeup and jewelry that just makes life a little more fun! Some of you commented and e-mailed me about my jewelry holder. I really wanted to show you, so you can make one too. I purchased this from a lovely boutique that was going out of business. My dear friend Merrit owned it, and decided to close it in order to stay at home with her new baby. She is incredibly talented and creative. Merrit used this to display some of the jewelery that was for sale. I am so happy to have this little reminder of her beautiful boutique.
It is a frame, painted and distressed. Behind it is a piece of corrugated board, covered in white fabric, topped with a beautiful piece of lace. A piece of wire across two nails, to hold earrings, straight pins for hoops, and clear push pins to hold necklaces.
Believe me, my vanity will not always be neat and tidy, however, my jewelry always is thanks to this!
So, go comb your antique stores, flea markets and garage sales for a vanity to refinish, and find an old frame to make a jewelry holder. Guaranteed to be a good time for any girlie girl!