Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter

This year is my third Easter in the States and I’m still not getting used to not having Good Friday and Monday off. I always liked the long Easter holidays, especially the Easter egg hunts and a very special memory I have, is getting up with my mom and sister at the crack of dawn to go to church. It was all dark, a fire was lit in front of the church, we were standing outside around the fire and listened to the Easter story, prayed and went inside for the ceremony. When I was seven years old I got baptized in the Easter ceremony at 6am in the morning.
This Easter Brian’s mom is coming down with her two grand kids (3 and 6). I wanted to do something fun for them, and when my friend Heather told me that she will bake cake pops for Easter I needed to copy her idea. www.bakerella.com has the coolest things on her website. I decided on the chicken and bunny cake pops. I baked the cake, crumbled it into a bowl and put a full can of frosting in it. After mixing (with my hands) I rolled balls, melted some candy melts and stuck the lollipop stick first in the candy melt, then half way into the ball. I tried a couple of bunny shapes but gave up, they were a little too hard to make. It is so sticky and falling apart easily, that balls were all I had the patience for. All of them went into the freezer for a little while to harden up before I ducked the full ball into the candy melt. It all got pretty messy, but I had so much fun doing them. Of course mine didn’t look as professional and were a little out of shape, but who cares. After a couple hours when everything was dry, I melted some more candy melts, to decorate the balls with faces. I have to say the edible pen was not working for me. It just didn’t write on the hard surface. Not sure if I got the wrong pen, but that part pretty much sucked. I painted some eyes as good as I could – I think they pretty much all look like Chinese chicken (and of course I have the song in my head every time I eat one of them)  






See the bunny in the third row, it kinda looks like a rein deer, thank god I only made about 5! and ate'em all by myself, so nobody really saw them (besides now!)

I have to say, they taste pretty good! I can’t wait for Tyler and Aiden to come see them! J We might even have a little easter egg hung in the back yard. I saw something really funny on TV yesterday, were they colored the eggs camouflage! That made me laugh.

Happy Easter everyone!

Carina

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My new toy..

Last week when we picked up our new dining room table at Borders, I became the lucky owner of a CRAFT ROOM! I’m still so excited about it. My own private room where I can have all my little projects lined up and organized, or just all of them messy, laid out in the room with the door shut. You already think, what does this have to do with a new dining room table? Let me tell you! J We had this spare room before and couldn’t decide what we are going to do with it. We have two guest bedrooms upstairs, one already furnished for guests the other one empty. We were thinking about renting one room, but I’m just not that kinda girl. I need my privacy and want to lay on the couch whenever I want to, without a stranger in my house. I thought about a baby’s room – but I guess that is a little too early. SO I came up with that perfect idea, since the room is empty anyways to have a craft room! Brian gets the garage and I get a room for myself! Deal! So last Saturday when we picked up the table, we put the other dining room table upstairs. I put the new painted dresser in that room as well (I blogged about that dresser already, so I spare you the details). I bought a bookcase from Ikea (love that store!) and organized my new room. I decided it is not bright enough and went to Good Will the next day to check out their stuff. I found a perfect silver floor lamp and ran across that awesome, most beautiful wing chair.

I fell in love right away, BUT it was pretty dirty, I had the wrong car with me and decided to just leave it alone.
I could not sleep that night! Have you ever had that happened to you? I was thinking about that chair, and how it will be gone the next day after work. I couldn’t help but call my American mom Bj to ask what her plans were for the day. I’m a lucky girl! She went with her mother in law right away and because Oma is a senior - she just turned 91 – they got a discount. For a total of 18$ I’m now the proud owner of my first wing chair.
I started taking out staples, which let me tell you, is not as easy and quick as I thought it would be.

 


  
 
 








































But as you can see, I made it! The chair is pretty much naked, all fabric removed. Now the fun and difficult part starts. Picking out fabric, new buttons, get some batting and THEN staple it all to the chair. That sounds so easy and fun!! :) Let’s see if I will need to donate the final result, or if it might be one of my favorite furniture in the house.   


Yesterday I went to Jo-Anns to look for some fabric. I didnt think that this will be so hard.. I walked the aisles about 4 times and couldnt figure out what I want. Solid color too boring, stripes too dificult to get straight. I ended up with a green patterned fabric, but when I came home I already didnt like it anymore. I also bought batting, staples and other small stuff. Today I cut the batting, laid everything in place on the chair and stapled everything to the wood. Now I need to find fabric to put up, maybe I'll go again this weekend.
 





and here it is..
The fabric I have chosen.







Stay tuned to see more as I update on the progress.


























Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I'm back..

I kind of feel bad for not blogging for several weeks now. And it’s not because nothing is going on – it’s because I have way too much and had not enough time to write it all down. Of course I took lots of pictures along the way. I have several projects running at the same time and before I finish one, there is already a next one lined up.

Here is the first project I was working on, and now I’m feeling really bad – I made some bridal shower cookies for my friend Liz, not to mention that event took place in February and by now they are happily married and already back from their honey moon. I can’t believe I haven’t posted in two months. But here are the sugar cookies on a stick. I gave some to Brian for Valentine’s day as well.  
I made sugar cookies from scratch, attached a plastic stick in the middle of each heart and baked them for about 12 minutes. After that, I let them cool down, colored them with glace in pink and white (http://www.ourbestbites.com/2008/12/tutorial-glace-icing-and-cookie.html), and let them dry again..
and wrote some sweet things on them. After they were completly dry I wrapped them in single wraps.
Congrats to Liz and Mike!


Project number two: Since Easter is around the corner I blew out some eggs (two holes on each side and omelets for dinner), dyed them in different colors, put glue all around each egg and sprinkled glitter. Oh I love me some glitter. It was about everywhere in the kitchen! But now we have a fun colorful Easter nest sitting on the mantel. I found this idea in the Martha Steward Craft book.  
Here are some pics..



























After that, let’s see. Brian had a dresser, and besides the beech color which didn’t go well at all with any of our other furniture, it was in pretty bad shape. I took it all apart,


sanded everything down with our new sander, and started to paint.



After about four coats of stain, it finally became as dark as I wanted it to be. I assembled all pieces together, attached glue to everything and now it is fitting right in with all the other furniture.




Then, when Brian was out of town for three days, I got a new decorating idea from this cool lady, check out her blog! http://cleanandscentsible.blogspot.com/2011/03/flower-balls.html I went to my favorite store Michaels to buy some Styrofoam balls, a flower punch, some pins with red and pink pearls. (its cheaper in the sowing aisle than the wedding)

 I went home to start punching out red flowers.


I put two flowers together, attached a pin in the middle and attached the flower to the ball. Repeated that for about 300 times until three cute flower balls were done




I don’t know if you heard about that, but the bookstore Borders is closing about 50% of their stores. In Atlanta I believe there are only two stores staying open. None of them close by. When we heard about that, we drove straight there and bought about the whole store. Books not as much as furniture. So far we ended up with three Slat walls for the garage, bought the hooks for it as well and now Brian can have some tool time! :)

I was planning on building a dining room table for the longest time now and just could not figure out how, and could not get over the price for wood panels in 4”x8” dimensions. Every table I have seen so far was over 1000$. So while at Borders, we walked around and there was this library table, beech color, covered in books and no “sold sign” on it. That’s it, that is my table!!! I found a table which I can still re-do and make it my own. We went home and measured again, to see if it will be working in our dining room and drove straight back to buy it! Last Saturday we picked up the table and I have to say it is HEAVY. Yikes, I was not able to pick it up, so at 8.30am on a saturday morning we had to call a friend to help us out. We put it straight in the dining room, so we dont have to carry it any more than needed. We sanded it down (I had to clean for 3 hours to get all the dirt out of the house!)


..and put a pre-coat on it.  


that's after three coats of Bombay Mahagoni stain. Every coat has to dry for at least 5 hours, so the process is kinda long.
Last night I gave it one more coat, and tonight I will sand it for the last time before we put the finish on. I'm so excited that we will have a cool "home-made" dining room table finished by tonight!!






Still thinking about Borders though, we bought some more hooks, a hand truck, two tiny serving trays, a ruler, a stepping stool for the kitchen, AND three library ladders. We are talking about building built-ins in our formal living room. It has those beautiful French doors and a built-in bookcase would just fit in perfectly. Brian fell in love with the ladder the moment we first walked in the store. But of course those are so expensive that we waited, and waited.. and discussed.. Early last week he went back again, and they were reduced in price and still some available. He called me to ask if I would be ok, if he would buy not only one ladder, but actually three, since Borders is not selling them separately. You will have to buy the whole section. Mmh.. I guess we can sell them and keep one for us. So now, we have three really cool library ladders in the basement with all the other furniture which need to be re-done. Has anyone of you ever built built-in bookcases?
Other than that.. some more baking..


I found a recipe on the internet of a reeses butter cup cheesecake cupcake, which I needed to try out. It was so easy to make and soooo good! 




Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake Minis
Ingredients
Crust: 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs 
4 tablespoons sugar 
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted 
12 bite-size peanut butter cups
Filling: 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature 
1 cup sugar 
1/4 cup all-purpose flour 
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or almond extract 
2 eggs
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place a paper cupcake liner in each cup of a standard muffin pan.
To make crust: In a bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter until crumbs are moistened. Press crust into bottom of each muffin cup. Put 1 peanut butter cup into the center of each crust.
To make the filling: Beat cream cheese with a handheld electric mixer until fluffy. Add sugar, flour, and vanilla, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Spoon cream cheese mixture over peanut butter cups and graham cracker crusts. Bake until just set, about 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely before serving.



There was also a Jeans purse which I started to sow. I even put a liner in it, sowed everything together and got stuck, because it just didn’t look as I imagined it. I need some time to think and for now just put it away.

My German friend Miraya who lives in Smyrna and works in the same company as I do, gave me some white curtains which she didn’t need anymore and right now (I mean not this exact second) I’m working again on a new pillow. There are some felt circles involved and it will take about forever to finish. But I will finish! I hate putting things away half done.

I guess that’s it for now. :) 8 Mil. projects in one post,  and 30minutes ago, there was a new one on the list, which I will tell you a little later about.

Have a great week everyone!

Your German Girl,

Carina