Monday, March 29, 2010

Happy Birthday, Dear


Wishing a very Happy Birthday to my wonderful husband, Jay.  I’m a lucky girl to have such a kind, funny, strong, supportive and loving husband who is a tremendous source of strength for not only me, but for our family and friends.  He makes me proud everyday. 

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Project Runway – Fashion and Technology


It may come as no surprise, but I love Project Runway.  Each season seems to get better and better.  This year I’ve been inspired by the show’s incorporation of technology with fashion design.  I’m not that hip to technology, so I guess I’m especially amazed at the advances that are available these days.  Vivienne Tam was the guest judge this week and she introduced the designers challenge to create their own textile with the HP Touchsmart PC.   These nifty little machines actually allow you to use the screen as a canvas, using anything from your fingers to an actual paintbrush!   I wasn’t amazed by the fabrics that the designers created, but I was completely inspired by the process. 

Earlier this season, the show provided designers with the HP Touchsmart Notebooks to use for sketching their designs.  I think I’ll always be an old fashioned girl that likes a hand-drawn sketch, but you can’t deny that these products provide a world of opportunity to designers that an ordinary sketch can’t.   

This episode made me want to run out and buy this machine (and the notebook for that matter).  My husband talked sense into me today…but you never know if I might bring one of them home with me someday.

Monday, March 22, 2010

My Vintage Family Cookbook

I’ve wanted to put together a family cookbook for years, but finally got the inspiration I needed when Basic Grey introduced the “Nook and Pantry” collection a few months back.  The line has the wonderful vintage feel of grandma’s kitchen and I thought it was perfect to display all of my favorite and cherished family dishes.  It’s amazing how recipes have the ability to evoke special memories of important people in your life or a special time.  That’s what makes this project so meaningful.  I will enjoy adding to it through the years.  Following are a few of the pages from my book….enjoy and feel free to try the recipes.  I can guarantee they are all delicious.


The album cover – The illustration caption reads “I only have a kitchen because it came with the house.”  Fits me to a tee.  I’m not much of a cook myself, which makes me adore these recipes that much more.   

inside cover

The inside cover and opening page of the appetizer section.

Oven Hash Browns

I’m claiming this as my recipe because I changed one ingredient..otherwise I had nothing to do with it.

Country Beans

I cannot get enough of my mother-in-law’s Country Beans.  I love them so much, I ask her to take them on the road whenever she’s asked to bring a dish to pass.  Yum!! 

Bird's Bruschetta

Every once in a while, Jay gets a cooking bug in him and this is one of his favorites to make.  I enjoy watching him play “chef” and take pride in his tasty bruschetta.


Opening page of the soup section

Taco Soup

A staple around our house.  Tastes great with Doritos.  

main dish

 Main Dish section.  The window actually opens.  Cute.Little Chickens

Absolutely the BEST meal ever made.  It’s been our birthday dinner for most of our life – although my mom has tortured me for the last few years by not making it.  She would say that I’ve tortured her by forcing her make it all these years….it’s a pain in the butt.   This recipe is so good….hot or cold, so be sure to make enough for leftovers! 

Chicken Dish

This is the easiest meal to make and great to bring along as a dish to pass.  It has an addicting flavor and something I need to have at least once a month.  You know if a recipe includes crushed Ritz crackers and butter it MUST be good!

Nana's Spaghetti Sauce

I have several Spaghetti recipes that are all a little different.  My mom’s is my favorite, but I haven’t added that one to the book yet.  This one is Nana’s which has a little sweetness to it.              Very good.


The opening of the dessert section.  The apron is adorable.  I also like how the ribbon treatment turned out…..I gathered it with a ripple effect which adds a nice texture.

Pie Crust Rolls

 My Nana used to make these little “leftover” treats for us every time she made a pie and had extra crust to work with.  Delicious! 

Chocolate Cherry Cake

This is my Birthday cake (Wendie’s too) that I’ve had every year of my life (at least as far back as I can remember).  There is nothing else like it in the world and the frosting is absolutely addicting.  My mom sure had a winner with this one. 

Mandarin Orange Cake

This cake is light, fruity and delicious!  It’s easy too.

Apple Wrapper Pie

This is a Betty Crocker recipe that I’ve adopted.  I’m not much of a cook, but I do like to bake (once a year or so) and this is my specialty.  It’s an interesting and tasty twist on pie.

Apple Pie Pops A recipe found in the Detroit Free Press….cute little fall treat.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Scrapbooker is Born

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Avery shows off her new scrapbook


My niece Avery stayed with us this weekend while her brother traveled to Flint with Mom for a hockey tournament.  I took her with me to scrapbook league yesterday, her first time scrapbooking.  League can be a long day, so I was crossing my fingers that she wouldn’t get bored.  She LOVED it!  I had a feeling I had a scrapbooker on my hands when we arrived at Scrappy Chic – she got out of the car and took a picture of the store! 

By the end of the day, Avery completed 16 pages to my 2.  My friends all know that I’m not the speediest at my craft, but when Avery pointed it out to my friend she got quite a kick out of it.  I walked away from the table for a moment and Avery said to Chris, “Aunt Beckie’s really slow, but I still really like her.”  Phew!

We had a really great day together and I loved watching her select her photos, write her name, draw pictures and play with stickers.  We bought a scrapbook for her to keep all of her new pages in and she spent the entire night (and morning) looking through it.  She was so proud to show Uncle Jay and Mom too.  My favorite page of hers is the first one here, which includes a drawing of her family – Mom, Dad, Avery and her brother Jack.  There is something so eternally precious about a child's portrait of her family.

I’m looking forward to bringing my new scrapbook buddy with me again sometime.    

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Notice all the hearts drawn around the family…..

shows how much this girl is loved.

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Woops…I think we have a duplicate picture here, Aves.

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She laughs every time she sees Uncle Jay’s silly face in this page. 

What a clown.

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She asked me to help her spell Disney World so she could write

where she was here.

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The picture of mom and dad is a little off in timing with the Christmas pics, but she LOVES this picture and points it out every time we look at the book.  I thought the animals were a funny addition too. 

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One of her favorite pages…..she wanted this cheetah paper more

than anything we bought that day.