Saturday, March 31, 2012

Best Rolled Sugar Cookies

The best sugar cookie cutouts are called the The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies on AllRecipes.com
My go to icing is the Sugar Cookie Icing. It is time consuming making the dough, allowing it to refrigerate, rolling them out, baking.....you get the point!


Even more time consuming is make several batches of the icing, coloring it, making sure it is the right consistency and tediously icing each and every cookie.

See what I mean? You are looking at 60 cookies that need to be iced.

I like to use a smooth edged butter knife from Crate and Barrel. They carry them for $2.95. I bought it specificially for icing sugar cookies like this.

I make them in the evening and allow them to sit out on the counter overnight to dry. In the morning the icing will be dry to touch yet remain colorful and shiny. You are stack them in the morning for transport or storage.

I had some leftover purple Wilton's Candy Melts, so I decided to dress them up by piping a "6" on them. I made these for my daughter to take to school for her birthday treat to pass out to her class.


In the morning I was unsure of which container to put the cookies into to take to school. After poking around the pantry I decided to try out my chip and dip container. I got this at Target over a year ago and it comes with a lid. My friend thought it was a cookie container when she saw it!

I didn't want to leave the center empty, so I broke out some Easter Reese's Cup and put enough Reese's in the center for her to pass along with the cookie.


Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

White House Black Market Housewife Dress

Obsessed with this dress...but this is how it started. My brother is getting married next year so on a whim over a month ago I decided to look up dresses at White House Black Market on my laptop one night. I own two formal dresses from this store and it is like they were made just for me.....fitted and flattering in all the right places.

I saw this polka dot shirt dress that just arrived and loved the look of it but eventually forgot all about it until this week. I checked online to see if they still had it out of curiosity and it was no longer on the website. I met a friend for coffee at the Fashion Valley mall today and felt like I was being pulled into this store afterwards. It was this feeling that I knew they had on there on clearance in my size.

Guess what? They had three left and one of them was in my size! It was marked down to $69.99 from $148. This is me trying it on in the dressing room. The fabric is luxurious and plentiful with a full skirt, cinched fitted waist and classic style. I LOVE the modest length of the skirt as well.

It was a splurge for me to purchase something like this on a whim, but I have zero guilt because it was the one and it felt right.

The best part was I didn't even realize it had hidden side pockets until I got home!

I am planning on wearing it this spring and summer as a casual dress.

The side of the shopping bag says exactly how I feel in this dress.

I also tried on this dress which was marked down to $69.99. I really loved this silk dress but could justify buying two dresses like this in one day.

I also love the modest and comfortable fit of this dress. I prefer my back to be covered in dresses and I love the sleeves. Very beautiful and classy to me!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Long Way from my Yoga Pant Days

J. Crew gray pants, Victorias Secret PINK neon yellow marled raglan top, Gymboree white and neon yellow scarf, and Hurley fedora hat. I also put on my big leopard print earrings that I haven't worn in many years.

Seven for all Mankind jeans, Max Azria polka dot top, gray jacket.

Joes Jeans, Michael Stars longer length green and white striped tank, Old Navy gray tee with a paisley blue print on the front, Ann Taylor Loft green cardigan, BCBG blue wedges, gold necklace.

My six year old took this picture.


Bracelet from Target, green and gold hinged bracelet.

Kirkland from Costco running pants, Victorias Secret PINK thermal blue long sleeve top, Target neon yellow scarf.

Wearing my new ring.


*** The remaining photos are things I tried on at an awesome local resale store. I didn't have much time and wasn't able to purchase anything the day I tried these items on, but I am going back soon. ***

Banana Republic gray leopard print cardigan. I actually ended up winning this exact cardigan on eBay tonight in one size bigger for $6.50.


Unknown brand, but the quality of this top was nice and the bow around the waist was actually very nice looking.

Michael Stars comfy melon colored top. It is a one size fits all top and was a bit too big for me, especially around the neck.   :(

I think I am going back for this one. I fell in love with this DKNY casual jacket.

Love the casual slit pockets.


~MSC

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Entry Overhaul

 This ottoman was love at first sight. I found this at Home Goods in November and thought it would be perfect for the entry. I bought the ottoman all right.....but it only lived in my entry for about 5 days before it found its home in the living room where it works much better. My living room already has pops of this exact teal so it worked out well in the end. 


I have been wanting to make over our entryway for some time. I managed to get rid of the entry table we purchased for our new home when we lived in Iowa. The matching table, mirror, and lamp worked well for our grand entry in that home but not so much in our California home. We lamp found it's home on our covered patio, the table went to Goodwill last fall, and the mirror which doesn't match anything is still sadly hanging on the wall.

 

Browsing at Home Goods a few days ago I came across this table as a possibility.

I went back again the following day and fell in love with this. It was absolutely perfect for the space. The size was just right.....tall enough, only 13 inches in depth, the width was great.

Love the simple style, the shiny knobs....

....and check out the great use of space inside. I am imagining baskets and storing hats and umbrellas in there. I look at the top and there are huge scratches........SO BUMMED! I am going to check back often to see if they get another one of these in.  :(

I think I found the gray runner I want on Overstock.com and I am currently looking for either a white or shiny metal framed mirror. I will keeo you all updated if I ever get around to finding the right pieces for this space!


~MSC
 



Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars

I found a photo of these bars on Pinterest and if you take a look at this picture you will understand why I needed to make them.

Dreamy, aren't they?

I cut the recipe in half, so I used an 8x8 square pan in place of a 9x13. I adapted this recipe by adding lots of cinnamon. I added 1/2 Tablespoon to the bottom crust layer.

Couldn't stop eating this mixture.....butter, brown sugar, and oats.

Make your cheesecake and place over the bottom crust layer after it comes out of the oven. Toss apple slices with cinnamon and nutmeg and arrange over the cheesecake. Take that yummy butter, brown sugar, and oat mixture otherwise known as streusel and sprinkle across the top.

This is what it looks like straight out of the oven.

If you are like me and can't wait, throw it in the freezer to help it cool quickly so you can eat it sooner.

Do not, I repeat, do not forget the caramel topping.
My friend came over Saturday night and we ate some with berry champange and frozen vanilla yogurt.

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars
adapted by MySweetCreations from Paula Deen's original recipe.
Crust:

1 Cup all-purpose flour

1/3 Cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/2 Cup butter, softened

1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon



Cheesecake Filling:

12 ounces (1 1/2 packages) cream cheese, softened

1/2 Cup sugar

1 egg

1  teaspoon vanilla extract


Apples:

2 apples (I used Honeycrisp) , peeled, cored and sliced

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg



Streusel Topping:

1/2 Cup  brown sugar

1/2 Cup all-purpose flour

1/4 Cup quick cooking oats

1/4 Cup butter, softened


Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, combine flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Press evenly into a 8x8 square baking pan.  Bake 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with sugar in an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Then add in egg and vanilla. Pour over warm crust.

In a small bowl, stir together chopped apples, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Spoon evenly over cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle evenly with Streusel topping. Bake 20-30 minutes, or until filling is set. Drizzle with caramel topping.



Friday, March 16, 2012

InstaFriday: My Week In Photos

Made this Bagel Melt from AllRecipes.com.....minus the bacon since I don't eat that. Delicious.

Also made the Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars after seeing a photo of them on Pinterest.

Had an awful Reese's Peanut Butter Sundae from Baskin Robbins. Looks nothing like the picture. You can see the spoon inside the cup has plenty of space and isn't really touching anything. I had one of these before and it was over the top. I went back to a second time and this is what I got. I think they forget the ice cream because what was there was very dry, just chewing some chopped up Reese's cups.

Chevron bags for my daughter's birthday party.

Art projects with my daughter.

Fashion Valley Mall, waiting for Baby Gap to open up.

Daughter drew a "John Deere" baseball hat.


Caramel Macchiato I had in the city just before the SD Half Marathon expo on Saturday.

At the expo picking up my race packet.

The morning of my first race, the SD Half Marathon. I ran it in 2 hours, 10 minutes.

I fell in love with this dining room bench at World Market. Like, I seriously want to buy this.

I also liked this raw wood table at World Market.

Love me some Target clearances. A gray and white canvas dry erase board for a few dollars.

My sleepy kitty.

I love when they tuck their paws in. So cute.

InstaFriday:

life rearranged
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