Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Teresa Collins

Just showing off a pic of me with Teresa Collins. She's so nice! :-). Ugh! Does that fanny pack make me look fat?

Since I write for Craft Critique, I went to the show as Media this time. Don't worry! See that pink lanyard around my neck? That's for my distributor order so I get you some new products to buy:

Monday, January 30, 2012

My morning at Prima Marketing

On Saturday I spent my morning at Prima Marketing learning how to make an Art Journal; I'm guessing it's otherwise known as a Smash Book (is there a difference?). Although we did not have enough time to finish our books, they gave us instructions on various techniques which I can't wait to try once I return home. There were also some really cool products we used, which I can't wait to get into the store.

Below are only some of the techniques we learned. I took a total of 51 pics of the project.

 Gesso and Distress Stains:

Gesso and India Ink:

Pan Pastels with a stencil:

Toilet paper or paper towel tube:

Stenciling and layering with Fixative and Matte Finish:

Gesso, acrylic paint and book page:


Saturday, January 28, 2012

It's official!!!

I am Copic Certified. YAY! Will add the Copic blinky later. :-)

Friday, January 27, 2012

In case you missed it....

Click here to go to my article on Craft Critique :-)



Thursday, January 26, 2012

CHA or bust!

Here I am! in Anaheim, California! I am so ready for the show to start. The only reason why I'm here early is because I have a Copics certification class tomorrow. Then, on Saturday, a couple of workshops with Prima Flora. The show starts Sunday and runs through Feb 1.

As you can tell, I'm very excited to be here. Check back daily, beginning tomorrow (Friday) for show pics.The first booth I will hit is the Flip Pal booth. If you are interested in the Flip Pal, will be on sale, pre-order, for $129.99. That includes your shipping as well.

As is the case with most CHA orders, it will be a couple of weeks - most likely - before I get it in; usually vendors need a week or two after the show to sort through their orders and ship them out. Then, there are people like me who refuse to leave a CC# with them; I make them call me for the number after the show is over and I'm home. Can't take a chance on them losing the paperwork with my CC# on it. Click here to pre-order your Flip-Pal.

** NEW NOTE January 28: I will find out the show specials tomorrow when the show opens. What this means to you is I might change the link above to reflect special pricing on the Flip-Pal to include the Creative Suite Craft Edition Software and the case. The Flip-pal only comes with the following:

Scanner 10.25″ x 6.5″ x 1.25″
Four AA batteries (installed)
2GB SD memory card (installed)
USB to SD adaptor
Stitching and color restoration software
Quick Start User Guide
One-Year limited warranty



Our Christmas dinner

A month late but still looks delicious!

I wanted to share at least the photo (ok, and the recipe) of our Christmas dinner this year. It was soooo delicious! and I was so happy that it came out just like the photo on the website. The stuffing was added after the pork had finished cooking. It's not like a turkey were we stuff the turkey and let everything cook at once. This is a safety precaution because, as some of you know, if you don't cook pork correctly, bad things can happen. So it's best not to risk compromising your pork roast by stuffing the center while it's cooking.

The beverage in the photo, I bought a bottle of cranapple juice instead of cranberry juice, and then apple juice separately. Added the rest of the ingredients and everything came out just fine. 

We also had the apple cider gravy also available on the website for the crown pork roast recipe. It was so good over the mashed potatoes. The rosemary leaves and the cranberries are suppose to represent holly and berries:

For the crown pork roast recipe, click here.

For the other items for this dinner, including the spiced punch recipe, click here.

Thanks! Tomorrow we get back to scrapbooking!



Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Homemade Palmiers

Hey everyone! remember the croissants from yesterday? Well, I made mini-palmiers for the same event.

The dough process was slightly different but just as much fun; it still involved a lot of folding and a lot of butter (unsalted). Oh! and a LOT of sugar. The difficult part was rolling out the dough wide enough so I could fold each side 3-ways to the center. 

The trick with Palmiers is that you don't need them to bake for very long on each side; maybe 10 minutes each side. They will brown on the bottom on the first half of baking; not the top. Flip them over and let them bake for another 10 minutes. The sugar caramelizes and that helps with the coloring. If you do bake them for too long, you will have palmiers that are hard and crunchy when the caramelized sugar hardens. Don't worry, after you flip them the tops will get a little bit more golden while the bottoms are baking.




Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Homemade Croissants

Hi everyone!

Earlier this month I had a "coffee" for a group of women I know in my community. Long story short, I decided to make homemade croissants. For those of you who are adventurous, they are a lot easier to make than one would think; just a bit time consuming.

First of all, there is a LOT of folding. And rolling the dough out into a perfect rectangle was a little bit challenging. One neat trick I learned was to roll out the dough between two pieces of wax paper. In the past I rubbed the rolling pin with flour.

The second huge thing about making croissants was the large amount of butter used in the recipe. Not only was the initial amount of butter for the dough, but I also had to add 2 additional sticks of butter (unsalted) during the folding process. It is also advisable to pat down the butter (flatten, actually) with a piece of plastic  wrap over it; that way you can avoid getting your hands messy. Still, I had to take my wedding ring off for this so I didn't have to clean it up later on:

One of the interesting things about the folding process is the more you fold, the more flaky layers you get. It's interesting because it appears the dough has been smoothed out, but some how it knows it's layered and has folds. I do not know enough about pastry making to know why or how; it just does.


I was also tasked with figuring out a way to create a make-shift proofer environment in my oven. After the fact, I found out that wasn't really necessary as long as the croissants were covered and in a room that is able to maintain a constant 80 degrees. With that said, my croissants would have definitely been better off staying covered overnight. You live and learn. They still came out great.

The recipe I have told me to cut out the dough into 4x6 rectangles, hence the need to roll out the dough into a large rectangle. Since I wanted mini-croissants, I cut the dough into 2x3 rectangles instead. You can put any type of filling in the center. And don't forget the egg wash; that's what gives the croissants it's golden glow.

Thanks for looking!



Sunday, January 22, 2012

Our holiday 2011

Hi Everybody!

I thought I would share with you a few photos of our trip to Virginia to visit with DH's daughter and her family. The grandkids were full of excitement and when we left, they asked if they could stow-away in our luggage.

During the trip I got the kids involved in a gingerbread house making adventure! DGS wanted dormer windows on the roof but DH refused to draw out the dimensions needed for the job. Sigh! ok, there's always next year. However, I made a crucial error with the gingerbread house and it caved in! Instead of using caramelized sugar like I have in the past, I used royal icing. Again, there's always next year:

 I used a cookie cutter to get the shapes for the windows

 Anybody recognize the apron?

Each of the older children decorated a side of the house. I did the front. After the fact, I realized I forgot to leave room for the chimney so I had to remove some of the candies on one side of the house.

DGS helping with the Twizzlers.

DGD helping with the chimney




There were 3 gingerbread men casualties.

While everyone was waiting on the house pieces to bake and cool, the kids and DH made gingerbread men. Everyone had an icing job:

DGS was in charge of the red icing for the buttons.

DH was in charge of the white royal icing for the face and squiggly lines on the arms and legs.

DGD was in charge of the green icing for the bow-tie.

Here is our Mr. Bill Gingerbread man. Oh No!!!!!!!!!!!!!!