Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Snickerdoodle Cake

Over the weekend I had a hankering for some cake.  So Sunday evening I made one...but I wanted to make something different, something we hadn't had before.  I knew Emma would want chocolate cake this coming weekend for her birthday and while I love a basic white or yellow cake, I wanted to be a bit more adventurous.

I scrolled through my pinterest dessert board, trying to decide on a winner and for whatever reason, I was really drawn to this Snickerdoodle Sheet Cake from Kristy at Sweet Treats & More.  I chose to make mine in layers instead of a sheet cake since I don't have a big sheet pan, but as I looked around her site she's since made it again in layer form and the directions don't change a bit.  Except she adds more icing for the layers and I would definitely agree to that--you'll want more.



It mixes up quick and does not disappoint.  If you like snickerdoodle (cinnamon-sugar) cookies, you will love this cake.  It tastes just like one!  It's fluffy and light with a sweet but not overpowering cinnamon-sugar flavor.  The brown sugar-cinnamon buttercream icing is excellent too.  Admittedly, I ran out of cinnamon at this point (who makes a snickerdoodle cake without first checking their cinnamon supply???) so I had to use cinnamon-sugar in the icing, but I just cut back a little on the brown sugar to make up for it.

Kristy says she made this to go with a Mexican meal and I have to agree, I think that would be delicious.  It would balance a mexican meal just right and give that bite of sweet without overpowering the spice you'd just eaten.


I will definitely make this cake again.  If you're looking for a fun and different dessert this summer, I'd recommend this one.

p.s.  I completely forgot to make my brother-in-law a dessert for May as part of his "Dessert of the Month Club" Christmas present so I've got these blondies cooling on a rack now for delivery later this afternoon...the batter was DELICIOUS and I'll give a full review soon.  ;)

Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Memorial Day!!

Let me first take a minute to thank all of the men and women that have served in the US Military fighting to keep our freedom and way of life.  And a special thank you to all of those that died serving their country and to the families of those that never made it home.  Your sacrifice ensures my way of life and I can never repay what you've given.  Thank you!

I hope everyone had a great weekend and day today.  Me--we had a quiet weekend with no plans which was nice after the crazy month we've had.  Graduation and Emma's birthday are both next weekend, so we just stayed home, cleaned house and enjoyed each other's company.

Oh, and swam.  There was a lot of swimming.  :)

I made another block for Oren's Star Wars quilt today.  It's the Galaxy Star from The Quilted Snail.  I love some paper piecing as y'all know, but this block (which I've made before with NO issues) threw me for a loop today.  I had to start over about 5 times before getting on track.  Then not one mistake the rest of the time.  I think the issue was last time I made it I knew it was going to someone else so I tried hard and did my best.  I knew this block was for here so I just tried to wing it.  Note to me...don't try and wing it.




Up next--a shirred skirt with pockets from this tutorial.  Honestly--if you're wanting to make some summer skirts with a little style, this tutorial is what you're looking for.  I haven't made it before, so I'll let you know if I want to rescind that statement, but seriously--shirring seems scary but is oh-so-easy and adds such a great look.  I have this great white embroidered fabric and I just want to make a simple skirt with it--so this style is perfect.  I'm considering punching up the pockets with some contrasting bias-tape edges...we shall see.  :)



Have a great Monday evening everyone and I'll (hopefully) see you tomorrow!!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Oops...


Umm...I've been a little busy.  Wednesday was my only day I didn't spend at school last week so I wrote up a nice WIP Wednesday post and apparently never pressed Publish because when I sat down at the computer today--here it is...  So, let's all pretend it's Wednesday again and see what I've been up to and I'll be back tomorrow with a new post.  :)  Have a great weekend everyone!!


**Edited to Add--I'm so sorry I forgot to announce the winner of my Giveaway Day Prize.  I contacted the winner, contacted Amanda about the gift certificate and totally forgot to tell y'all about it!  Thanks to Kristy for reminding me...  Our winner was Sandra!!  And I'm so glad to be sending her new fabrics to kick off her journey back into sewing.  :)

Whew, life has been busy lately.  Last week I spent 8 hours each day in the school Book Fair (volunteer hours of course) and when you add on my Mom duties of chauffeuring, grocery shopping, house cleaning, sports-cheering, and just plain loving I was one tired girl.

But, I've got one day off this week between field trips, field days, and all that other Mom stuff to get some things done.

So...what am I working on today?

I'm mailing these Depression blocks to Cathy for That Stash Bee.  She asked us to think "Black and White TV" when making them.  I can't wait to see this quilt all made up.  What a striking quilt this will be.


 I'm working on another Star Block for Oren's Star Wars quilt.  This one took a back seat when I got busy with everything else, but I'm working on block 11/20 and I want to have this one on his bed before summer is over.  That seems reasonable...

via

Next up for bee blocks are some improv square blocks I picked out for the Rad {Empower} circle of do. Good stitches.  It's my month to host, and I thought we could all use the ease and creativity that improv squares bring to the table.  Here's the color scheme I picked out:

ColorSparkle
via

Maybe not my norm, but I'm all for branching out...sometimes... 

And when I finish the star blocks and the improv squares...I'm cutting into this for a summer skirt.


Crafterhours is hosting Skirt Week 2013 and I want to play along this year.  

crafterhours

You can play along too--head to their awesome site to check out the details.  I'd love to make most of what I wear this summer, excluding running clothes and swimsuits, of course...  ;)

So, what are you up to today and this week?  Let me know...I plan to get a lot more done once school gets out in two weeks.  :)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Le Challenge Accepted

As I mentioned last month, my friends Lucy and Nat set up a new blog where they challenge anyone who wants to participate to be creative with a set theme.  You can use any media you choose to portray that theme--fabric, paper, yarn, etc.

Le Challenge

For this month (runs from the 15th to the 15th), the girls chose WINGS.

I thought and thought over this, considering things with wings--birds, butterflies, planes; how wings allow you to fly, etc.  I thought about a dress/shirt with flutter sleeves.  I thought about artwork for Emma's walls about flying or finding you way and soaring.  I even considered  a mini quilt featuring a bird of some sort.

But time constraints kept me from all of those fun projects.  So, I settled on something fun and simple and perfect for the upcoming summer.

I made myself some angel wings.


I grabbed an old shirt from my "refashion" pile and a jpeg drawing of angel wings and set to work.

Here's a link I found online with great directions for this, and I did use her wings graphic for my design but it's a really simple project.

I put the drawing under the back of the shirt and somewhat traced the design.  It doesn't need to be perfect at all.
Step 1
via
Once I was happy with that, I got my applique scissors (any good and sharp scissors will work) and got to cutting.  I just cut holes where I'd drawn the marks on the shirt.  I wasn't overly careful about making them the right size or perfectly round or anything, I just went for it.

When they were all cut, I ran my hands over the holes to stretch out the remaining knit a little and make the holes open up some.

And there you go--I'm an angel from above...

This project is so simple and lends itself to so many interpretations--you could cut out a heart, star, word, etc.  You could cut slits in the sleeves or down the sides.

There you have it--my time-crunched interrpretation of "WINGS."  The girls have announced next month's theme already and it is "MARITIME."  How fun for summer.  Don't you want to play along too??


Le Challenge

Friday, May 10, 2013

Finish It Friday

2 Fridays--2 finishes!  And this is a big deal with as little time as I've had to sew lately.  And all of those giveaways to enter!  ;)  There's still time to enter my giveaway.  I'll close it at 8 p.m. EST tonight and announce the winner tomorrow hopefully, but will for sure email the winner by tomorrow.

Wednesday I said I was working on bee blocks for our Rad {Empower} circle.  Shannon asked for low- to medium-value x-plus blocks from Amy's tutorial.  Only bigger to finish out at 12" finished blocks.  There were no restrictions on colors or color placements.

I found that I usually sew a little louder than low-volume prints, so I ended up just pulling some fabrics and cutting and sewing without thinking too much.  After finishing, there might be a few things I'd change had I planned it out, but they're done, they're certainly quiet and they'll help someone be comforted and that's what matters most.


But I also finished up the baby gift I was making for a yet-to-be named friend.  I don't want to blow the surprise until she gets it (although I'm not sure she reads this blog much, lately anyway since she's got a lot going on).


Anyway...a few of us decided to send a friend a few things for her upcoming baby girl's arrival since we live all over the country and I LOVE the Infant Peasant Dress tutorial from Sew Much Ado.  It goes together so quickly and the result is darling.


I used this Honey Honey fabric I bought from Jennifer awhile back.  As I was cutting into it I thought Oh man, I should have made myself something out of this...so I may be on a hunt for more soon.  :)  I added vintage ric rac (from my Great Grandmother's stash) to the hem since I love to add something from my past to baby clothes and gifts.  I just feel it adds a little more to mix the old with the new.  :)  When it was finished, I thought the dress needed just a little more pizzaz, so I added a few rhinestones along the front of the dress. For that added baby bling, you know.  :)


We've got a busy weekend ahead, but I want to wish each of you a good weekend and a Happy Mothers Day to all the Mamas out there.  And for those of you that aren't yet, I wish you love and luck and a heartfelt hug.  I pray your day will come.

Linking up with Amanda Jean.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

WIP Wednesday

**If you're here for the giveaway or looking for it--click here.  And if you haven't entered--what are you waiting for???**

Today I've just got a minute to pop in.  This is Teacher Appreciation Week, so we've been busy making our teachers feel as special as they are by serving breakfast on Monday and lunch today.  When you add that in with our normal crazy schedule of softball, karate and everything else--this Mama's ready for some summer vacation!!

Anyway--quick pic of what I'm working on today...
My April (hangs head in shame because I'm NEVER that girl that's late with bee blocks) X+ blocks for Shannon and our Rad {Empower} circle of do. Good Stitches.

Here's one done:

Shannon asked for low- to medium-value prints in any order.

And here's one in progress:


And here's a little sneak peek of something getting made for a special bebe on the way...

Picking the fabric is always the hardest part for me...now to sew!


I will HOPEFULLY be back Friday with some finishes to show off...

What are you up to on this wonderful Wednesday?

Link up with Lee and show us all...
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, May 6, 2013

Giveaway Day

Hi y'all!  It's one of my favorite weeks of the year!  Giveaway Week at Sew, Mama, Sew!  It's so fun to see everyone sharing and giving and it's also fun to find new blogs I'd somehow missed before.  

Who doesn’t love a giveaway?  Not this girl.  Y’all know I love to share.  So, let’s get right down to it.  I know everyone participating in Sew, Mama, Sew’s Giveaway Day (and if you’re not, you really should) has a bunch of places to visit today and throughout the week, so I’m not going to take a lot of your time or make you jump through hoops.  I know what Giveaway Day is like on a dial-up connection, okay?!?

So…I am giving away a $25 gift certificate to the Westwood Acres Etsy shop!  Amanda, the owner, is a great girl.  She carries great fabrics in her shop, sews amazing things that she shows off on her blog, and makes me smile on Instagram nearly every day.  

She also has amazing customer service and great shipping fees...can you say $5.85 for shipping now matter how much inside the U.S.??

Here's a glimpse of some items you could get with $25...

Field Study Feathers FQ Bundle from Anna Maria Horner for Free Spirit

Field Study Feathers FQ Bundle from Anna Maria Horner for Free Spirit for $10

2wenty Thr3e Camera Fat Quarter Bundle by Eric and Julie Comstock For Moda

2wenty Thr3e Camera Fat Quarter Bundle by Eric and Julie Comstock For Moda--$12.50



Text The Rainbow Fat Quarter Bundle of Eight

              Text The Rainbow Fat Quarter Bundle of Eight for $19.95


Stripes That Bind Bundle of 10 Fat Quarters

                         Stripes That Bind Bundle of 10 Fat Quarters for $24.90


And that's just a taste...she's got individual fabrics and all kinds of other bundles too.


So, how can you win $25 to spend in Amanda's shop?  Just tell me what you like to sew best--quilts, clothing, etc.  I like quilts the best because they don't have to fit anyone, but as the weather warms up (down here in Florida we're just about to start our 6-month-long summer), I find myself wanting a new wardrobe of dresses, skirts and loose-fitting tops.

So, tell me your favorite thing to sew and you’re entered to win.  I love me some followers (so I’m not just talking/typing to myself), so if you’re a follower (new or old), let me know and you get another entry too.  

The contest will be open till Friday, May 10 at 8 p.m.(eastern) and then I’ll use Mr. Random.org to pick a winner.  Winners will be notified through email so make sure I can get a hold of you if you’re a no-reply blogger.  Otherwise I’ll have to choose another winner.

Good luck on all your goodie-winning adventures this week!  

p.s.  This contest is competely sponsored by me and my choice.  I have shopped with Amanda in the past and chose to support her shop for this giveaway.


Friday, May 3, 2013

Finished on Friday

I've got a finish!!  I mentioned on Wednesday that I was pattern-testing for Jenny again.  She keeps me busy with her awesome ideas.  :)

This one was for Emma and it's a tween/teen maxi dress pattern in sizes 8-16.  It's simple, modest, and perfect for summer months.


 I let Emma go through my stash and she picked this striped floral fabric for the main piece.  Then I suggested the white eyelet fabric (cheap from Walmart of all places...) as the accent for the bodice and bottom hem border.  She agreed.  :)


The eyelet was thin and see-through through the holes of course, so I backed it with Kona White and just treated them as one fabric when sewing.


Jenny's pattern was easy to follow and quick to sew.

I added criss-cross straps to the back since the straps were long enough and it just adds another detail.


Emma loves it and so do I!  Jenny said she'll probably release the pattern this weekend, so if you're itching to sew some cutesie girly summer clothes, head over to her site and check this one out.

linking up with Amanda Jean and her Finish It Up Friday Party.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

WIP Wednesday

Hello everybody! (Is anyone else hearing Grover from Sesame Street in your head right now??)  I've been thinking about the blog and y'all a lot lately, but honestly, I feel like I'm a work in progress right now.  I don't seem able to get everything done in my allotted hours of the day anymore...

There's been a lot of this



And this





a little of this



I recently went back to this on a part-time basis

Subbing--not teaching...

With a sprinkle of sewing throughout.  I'm pattern testing for Jenny again--this time for Emma.  It's a teen/tween maxi dress and I just need to try it on her and add the straps...


I'll show a finished project in the next few days.  And can I just say that it pains me a little that I am old enough to have a daughter that is old enough to need a dress this long.  Seriously--when did this happen???

In the meantime--don't forget that this coming Monday is Sew, Mama, Sew's Spring Giveaway Day (Week!).  I haven't decided for sure what I'm giving, but there will definitely be something being given away, so make sure to come back Monday if not before!!!