December 20, 2011

Need a quick gift?

Try these....
Yummy little loaves filled with love!

 They are easy to make and delicious to eat...

 Cranberry-Pineapple-Nut Bread

That is if you don't eat all the batter....
I know...I has raw eggs...but sometimes...well...

I made 16 15 sweet gifts in a snap...yes I ate one!

And I made a medium sized loaf and sent it to my mom & dad in California!
All from this one batch!

Here's the recipe:
  • 3 Large Eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 12 oz bag cranberries – put in the food processor for just a whirl to chop
  • 1 cup (8 oz can) crushed pineapple – drained
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp each:  cinnamon,  ginger, nutmegor use allspice
  • *You can add 3/4 cup raisins if you like...I used walnuts instead
Preheat oven to 350 F.  Prepare loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray
Beat the eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla for about 3 minutes.   Stir in the chopped cranberries and the crushed pineapple.
Sift the flour, baking soda, powder, salt and the spices and stir JUST TO COMBINE – DON’T OVER MIX into the eggs/fruit mixture. 
Pour into the prepared pans and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Stay Cozy, 

December 15, 2011

I'm melting...

Is this not the cutest Christmas cookie?

~the "melting" snowman~

For a "how-to" visit Meaghan at The Decorated Cookie!

...where you will find some fabulous creations!

Stay Cozy,

December 13, 2011

Last Minute Cookie Packaging...

Cookies make adorable gifts...
when packaged up in paper CD envelopes.

 Stay Cozy,

December 6, 2011

Tangy Treats

 Lemon Snow Brownies

A treat to share at my office/staff party tonight!

Tangy & Yummy...and so easy to make.
Here's the recipe!

Lemon Brownies
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter; room temperature
4 eggs
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Zest from 1 lemon

1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees/  Line the bottom only of a 9X13X2-inch baking dish with parchment paper and spray with Pam. In a mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar and salt; add butter. Stir together eggs, juice from 1/2 lemon and zest from 1 lemon; stir into batter and pour into prepared pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until set, use a toothpick to check. Remove from oven and cool on a rack. Drizzle with glaze and add "snow"!

Stay Cozy & Warm 
(It is 34 degrees here right now)

Love, Carrie

December 2, 2011

Simple Bling

While everyone seems to have their tree up and their home decorated for the holidays...
I am stil contemplating the kind of tree I want this year.

My husband wants a real tree for sure,
Our space is limited so it will have to be quite narrow!
That won't be a problem ~ there is an abundance of
fir trees here in Oregon!

My dilema is ~ how I am going to decorate it?
I am striving for a simple Christmas.
A season of truly celebrating Jesus' birth, His life on the earth
and His death on the cross for our salvation!

I love the season and all of the celebrations to come...
but I have challenged myself to slow down, "do" less of the things that don't really matter,
enjoy special time with family and friends....and for me...spend time in my kitchen baking treats to
share with those I love and those I have yet to meet.

So here we are...back at the beginning...
what shall my tree be?

 A tree of fruit & popcorn?

 ~or perhaps everything in red!

~ white decorations are simple & pretty ~

~ or maybe even snow ~

 I could decorate my tree with cards?

Last year my tree was small and colorful and covered in paper umbrellas!

Hmmm ~ well we are off to cut down a tree this weekend ~
please let me know if you have any suggestions!

I will share my decorated tree with you soon!
In the meantime ~ Stay Cozy ~
and enjoy the Season!


November 27, 2011

A White Wednesday Winnings...

I am so lucky to have won Spencer's giveaway at Bellamere Cottage!
I am the new owner of the most fabulous goodies....

 Don't you agree?
I hit the "giveaway jackpot"!
I adore it all, Spencer...
I can't thank you enough!

Stay Cozy, 

November 22, 2011

Paper Roses...

I have been having fun making these "paper bag" flowers.

You can use them to decorate a gift bag, as I have done...
string them together to create a garland...
add a place card with a clothespin for your table setting....
all kinds of fun!

Visit Emily at 52 Mantels to see the instructions.
She did a fabulous job with these fun flowers!

Stay Cozy....and...
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!


November 16, 2011

A Pink Surprise...

 I just sent this "Sandra Magsamen" Pink Christmas tree to my sister 
for her birthday.
I thought it would make a perfect addition to her sweet, little,
"Pink Plum Cottage"!

Sweet Wishes to a "Grown Up" Princess!

Stay Cozy,

November 12, 2011

I am on a "pumpkin" roll....

Mini "Pumpkin Butter" Cheesecakes
  • 12 vanilla wafer cookies (for crust)
  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 8 oz fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup"Pumpkin butter" ( I found mine at Trader Joe's)
Heat oven to 350°.  Line cupcake tin with liners. Place a vanilla wafer at the bottom of each liner.

Gently beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth using an electric mixer.
Gradually add in fat-free yogurt, egg whites and flour. Do not over beat.
Fill cupcake liners about one half full.

Top each with 1 tbsp of the pumpkin butter.
Swirl the pumpkin butter into the cream cheese mixture for a marbling effect.

Bake 30 mins.  Cool to room temperature.  
Chill in refrigerator and top with fat free whipped cream if desired!

November 10, 2011

It's Smashing....

~2 Smashing things to make with Pumpkin Puree~

Pumpkin Pancakes (serves 4)
Prepare 1 cup dry pancake mix according to the packagedirections.  
Whisk in 1/3 cup canned pumpkin puree.

Pumpkin Whipped Cream (makes 2 cups)
Beat together 1 cup heavy cream, 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, 
and 1 tablespoon canned pumpkin puree until soft peaks form.

I love pumpkin...especially at this time of year!

Stay Cozy, 

November 7, 2011

My "Forever" Calendars....

...are my ..."perpetual calendars" ...

 A perpetual calendar (or forever calendar) is a calendar which is
good for a span of many years.
They come in many different styles & designs...
and can be a true work of art!

This one is a Lisa Kaus design!

There is just something lovely & comforting about
the daily routine of a perpetual calendar.
I enjoy moving the markers to their new positions 
each morning to mark the new day!

They are much like "old reliable friends"!

Stay Cozy, 

November 1, 2011

'tis the start of the season...

What a wonderful surprise to walk into Starbucks today
and be greeted by the "Christmas Cup"!

My first ~Pumpkin Spice Latte~ this year!
A perfect treat on this gorgeous Fall Day!

(by the way...the mini cupcake is one that I baked!)

Stay Cozy,

October 31, 2011

What is your favorite Halloween Candy?

York Peppermint Patties for sure!

 I love them any time of year...
but especially the pumpkin and bat versions at Halloween!

And you can use them in many ways too...

Make a little spider...

or top off a cupcake...

Create a monster.... 
(visit here for instructions)
or add them to brownies....

Or do what I do and just eat them from the freezer!
What is your Favorite Halloween Candy?

Happy Halloween,

October 26, 2011

What a Crock!

Today was a comfort food kind of day.
And what better way to cook comfort food then in my crock pot!

There's just nothing quite better than walking in the door
to the  wonderful aroma of a crock pot meal!

And it's so easy....almost no preparation at all!

I put a pork loin roast into the pot, added a half dozen chunky
sliced potatoes, a chopped onion, a bag of fresh mushrooms,
and a can of cream of celery soup.

It magically becomes a delicious, good-for-the soul, 
cottage cozy meal.

 Add a salad or a scoop of veggies and you are good to go!

Since 1970, the Crock Pot has been making meal preparation so much easier for many of us, but the funny thing is that it was actually a 'what if' byproduct of an earlier invention, the "beanery", intended for use in the cooking of beans. 

Soon enough it became clear that the beanery appliance had another potential use: it could be used to cook various types of meat, and what's more, it could do so better than it did with beans. Soon after the modern Crock Pot slow cooker was born!

The first Rival Crock Pot slow cooker was released to the domestic market in 1971.
It came with a basic crock interior, a glass lid, and a bright red exterior.

What do you like to toss into your crock pot?

Stay Cozy,

October 24, 2011

A Sweet Surprise....

What a pleasure it was to return from my trip to California...
to find this sweet little gift waiting for me!

Thank you for such a warm welcome home...
my sweet friend, Elizabeth @ Creative Breathing!

Your creations are always such a whimsical "delight"! 
How lucky to be showered with blessings from afar!

Fondest Wishes,

October 5, 2011

You Can Go Home Again...

Off to visit family in California today!

Nothing like a dose of Mom & Dad to fill your heart!

Stay Cozy,

September 22, 2011

Frosting cupcakes the easy way...

Piping frosting onto cupcakes, instead of simply spreading it on, can really change the look of your desserts. 
Making neat little swirls creates a pretty and more professional finished look!
I have all the Wilton decorating tips and bags, etc...
...but the easiest way to pipe on frosting is to use a regular plastic bag.
(even a zip lock)
Just scrape the frosting into the bag with a spatula, twist the bag at the top and snip off the corner.

Happy Icing,
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