Thursday, June 28, 2007

My New Toy

I am so excited! I just got a new Canon Digital Rebel SLR camera. 10 megapixles!I've been saving for it for about 3 months. It just arrived today from Amazon. I have figured the basics out, but that's about it.

Here are a few pics.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Blueberry Recipes

Here are a couple of good recipes that I've tried out with our handpicked blueberries.

Blueberry Pancakes

Blueberry Muffins

Thursday, June 21, 2007


We got up early this morning to drive to Jackson, LA to pick blueberries. The alarm clock went off at 6 am, and since I had gotten home from work at 10:30 pm the night before, I didn't want to crawl out of bed. James started gently trying to get me up. I got up at 6:15, and we got on the road at 7. It is a pleasant drive to the farm. We picked blueberries for about 2 hours, and we came home with 18 pounds. We're having blueberry pancakes from breakfast :-)

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Happy Anniverysary, James!

Has it really been six years? I'm so thankful for you, and I couldn't imagine walking down this road of life with someone else at my side. I love you!

Friday, June 15, 2007

The photo montage

As promised, a post about the photo montage that we made for James' parents for their anniversary. We used Photoshop and Adobe Premier Elements, which James gave me for our anniversary last year. Almost all of the pictures were not digital, so they had to be scanned. I went through about 2000 photos - I'm not exaggerating at all. For a few days, after we were done, I didn't want to see another photo! Haha. After I chose which pictures to use, we chose songs. We have about 300 pictures that were going on the DVD, and we had 6 songs. The pictures started with wedding photos and came all the way to a few from this year.

My advice if you want to do this kind of thing yourself:
1) name your pic files in chronological order from the start using the following format yyyy/mm/dd. That will keep everything in order, instead of having all the birthday pics together and all the Christmas pics together.

2) If you use text on your pics, don't put in on the edge of the photo. The DVD looked fine on our TV, but not all TVs have the same resolution, so some of the text of the edges got cut off when we watched it on a different TV.

3) We had most of the pictures paced at 5 seconds each, which was almost too fast for the 1 st time viewing.

4) The more pictures the better. We had about 300, and ended up with a 30 minute DVD.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Buttercream Icing

Per request here's the recipe I used for buttercream icing ;

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened but not melted
2 & 1/4 cup confections' sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Place butter in a mixing bowl and beat until pale and creamy. Gradually beat in sifted confectioners' sugar and vanilla. After that is mixed well, add 1 TBS. hot (boiled but not boiling) water. Beat to give a soft peak consistency. Use immediately or cover and chill until needed. Bring icing back to room temperature before use.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Let them eat Cake

This past Sunday James' parents celebrated their 35th anniversary, and in honor of the occasion we all met at my bother-in-law's house Tuesday night and the six of us went out to eat at The Bonefish Grill. Yummy. After dinner we went back to the house for dessert. I had made this cake, after a number of phone calls to my mom for advise and reading a book on cake decorating. I assembled the cake in Red Stick and then carefully boxed it up for the 3 hour drive to my brother-law's house. Here's what I learned from the project:

1) Do not attempt to make a cake like this in one day. I spread the task out over 3 days. Saturday night I made buttercream cream icing. Sunday, I baked the cakes - 4 layers total. Monday, I put the "primer coat" of buttercream icing on. Tuesday I iced the cakes with fondant, assembled them, and inserted the flowers and ribbon.

2) The cake layers need structural support. I used chopsticks cut in half, and put them in 3 different places that went through all 4 layers.

3) For stability during travel, put a layer of buttercream on your serving platter before you put the cake on it. It will serve as glue to keep the cake from shifting on the platter.

4) If you're using fresh flowers on the cake you need to use flowers that have not been sprayed with pesticides. You can special order them from a florist, but the Whole Foods Market here keeps them in stock. To keep the flowers fresh for several hours, cut a drinking straw into thirds, fold one end up slightly, and tape it. Fill the taped up straw 3/4 full with water, insert into cake, and place flower into straw. The straw is so narrow that the water doesn't spill out. I turned them upside down and the surface tension of the water kept it in the straw.

We gave James' parents a DVD montage, but more on that later.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

What a Day

I have been working at a Walgreens that is in a bad neighborhood for the past several weeks. Wednesday, I went to work at 8 am, and at 10 am one of the front end managers came back to the pharmacy and told me that I'd better come outside and take a look at my car. The driver's side window had been busted out, and my purse - and it's contents- had been stolen. I had a very small purse tucked way under the seat. I hope they were greatly disappointed when there was only $5 cash to be found and no credit cards.

James was home, so he spent most of the day with the police, insurance, etc. Some people came out to our house to repair the car window on Thursday, and we've replaced everything was taken. Just waiting for my employer to refund us.

It is amazing what some people will do in broad daylight. I guess they are just desperate, they are so poor it doesn't matter to them if they get caught. . .at least they get fed in jail.
We're thankful that no traumatic damage was done, and I'll be even more thankful when I'm no longer working in that area.