Sunday, September 29, 2013

Chandelier Pendant Ornaments

Today, I finally finished making these ornaments for the craft fair.

After many days of looking for appropriate images, and resizing, printing, and cutting them out, I finished gluing the majority of them to the pendants yesterday, and while I was at work today, Tom painted the backs. We both think they look great. All that's left is finding a way to hang them from a tree branch.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Today was Huber's annual End-of-Summer Luau, and I decided to make Paula Deen's Pineapple Upside Down Cake.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 3 cups cake flour, plus more for pan
  • 1 cup butter, softened, plus 1/2 cup, melted
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups whole buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 (20-ounce) cans pineapple slices in juice, drained well (reserve 2 tablespoons juice for frosting)
  • 1 (10-ounce) jar maraschino cherries, drained well
  • Pineapple Buttercream Frosting, recipe follows
  • Chopped pecans, for garnish, optional
Pineapple Buttercream Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons reserved pineapple juice
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with nonstick cooking spray and coat with flour.
  2. In a large bowl, beat 1 cup butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add the sugar, beating until fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, add the 3 cups of flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine. Add the flour mixture into the egg mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  4. Divide the brown sugar evenly into each pan. Pour the melted butter equally over the brown sugar. Arrange the pineapple slices and cherries over the brown sugar. Reserve remaining pineapple slices and cherries for another use.
  5. Pour equal amounts of batter over the fruit and bake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 40 to 45 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Invert the cakes onto wire racks to cool completely.
  6. To assemble the cake, carefully arrange 1 cake layer, pineapple side up, on a cake plate. Carefully stack the remaining cake layer, pineapple side up, over the first layer. Frost the sides of the cake with Pineapple Buttercream Frosting. Press chopped pecans into sides of cake, if desired.
Pineapple Buttercream Frosting:
  1. Beat all the ingredients in a large bowl until well combined.
Yield: about 2 cups
I think it turned out really well. It was easy to make, it tasted good, and it looked pretty. Tom thought that the cake should have been more mushy, but to me it was more angel food cake-y, and I like angel food cake.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Working in Slo-Mo

Today was horrible for me! I was in so much pain from the surgery, it made me rethink my memories from the last surgery. I also ended up taking pain pills, and crocheting a lot slower than I had the previous day. I was able to complete yarn flowers from LionBrand's Amazing "Glacier Bay."

These should make a nice addition to the selection of flowers that I will have for the craft show.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Bandage is on the Other Knee

I had quite a busy day today. First off, bright and early, I had surgery on my other knee for a torn meniscus.

I might have mentioned in mid-August that I messed up my "good" knee while at band practice. Well, I was able to get in for surgery today, and it seemed to go just fine. I spent the remainder of the day crocheting more flowers from LionBrand's Amazing.


Mauna Loa

I love the Mauna Loa flowers more than I initially thought I would. That little pop of bright color every once in a while is so eye-catching! Other that that, Mom and Dad are here to help out during my convalescence, and I look forward to spending quality time with them.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Crocheted Flowers - Wildflowers

I had hoped to crochet some flowers for the craft show in November, and I experimented with some of Red Heart's Team Spirit yarn, but wasn't happy with the results. Oh, the actual crocheting went fine, but the yarn didn't change colors as fast as I had hoped, so I decided to pick up some yarn that was on sale at Wal-Mart, LionBrand's Amazing. I finished the skein of "Wildflowers" today.

I love the way that the colors change and the overall feel of the yarn. I intend to make pins, barrettes and hair pins with these flowers.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Lady of the Rings

I'm getting really good at these rings!

I was able to make 16 rings today! I'm really happy with them. Did I mention that I sold one of the previous rings the other night? I brought the rings I had to date in to Tidewater to show Nicole, and Julia decided that she just *had* to have one. I hope that they're just as popular at the craft show!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Ravens Love

Look at what I got at band tonight, a gift from the Ravens!

Apparently, it's a pretty close replica of the Ravens Super Bowl Champion ring, just in pin format. This is the kind of thing that makes band worth it - just kidding, I love band. I also learned tonight from Jeff (the guy I carpool with to band) that our last pin had an actual diamond in it. One of the other trumpet players had his pin looked at in the past, and learned that interesting factoid. Now I wonder about the stones in this pin...

Cinnamon French Toast Bake

We held Josh's baby shower today. You might recall that I made a baby blanket for him, but for the brunch, I made Cinnamon French Toast Bake.

Cinnamon French Toast Bake

French Toast Bake
  • 1/4 cup LAND O LAKES® Butter, melted
  • 2 cans (12.4 oz each) Pillsbury® refrigerated cinnamon rolls with icing
  • 6 LAND O LAKES® Eggs
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup Fisher® Chef's Naturals® Chopped Pecans
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • Icing from cinnamon rolls
  • Powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup, if desired
  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Pour melted butter into ungreased 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish. Separate both cans of dough into 16 rolls; set icing aside. Cut each roll into 8 pieces; place pieces over butter in dish.
  2. In medium bowl, beat eggs. Beat in cream, cinnamon and vanilla until well blended; gently pour over roll pieces. Sprinkle with pecans; drizzle with 1 cup syrup.
  3. Bake 20 to 28 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Meanwhile, remove covers from icing; microwave on Medium (50%) 10 to 15 seconds or until thin enough to drizzle.
  4. Drizzle icing over top; sprinkle with powdered sugar. If desired, spoon syrup from dish over individual servings. Serve with the additional 1/2 cup maple syrup.
I thought it turned out great! I was worried that it would be too sweet, so I chose not to use the powdered sugar or extra topping of syrup, and it was excellent just like that.

Monday, September 2, 2013

More Rings

I had a little time before work today, so I thought I'd made some more vintage earring rings.

I think I'm getting better at removing the earring backings, so that I can glue on the ring blanks. The hard part is deciding which earring to make into rings, and which to possibly save to make bracelets. I have a bunch that would go well together as bracelets, but am short an earring or two to fill out the bracelet blanks. I'll think on it some more and decide on something soon.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Vacation: Day Seven

It's amazing what I accomplished on my last day of vacation!

In addition to packing up the car, I finished crocheting another scarf in Red Heart's Boutique Sashay Metallic, as well as finishing reading a magazine. Before heading out of town, we stopped and visited a tall ship that was in town for the week, the El Galleon, from Spain.