Monthly Archives: November 2009

Christmas Chocolate Joe-Joe’s Cupcake with Double Chocolate Peppermint Buttercream

Ooo, check out this cute Cupcake blogger, “No one puts cupcake in a corner”! The blogger is a “Magazine Designer in the food industry. True cupcake fanatic, creator of the original Iron Cupcake.” Adorable!

A few more holiday gift ideas…

My favorite Christmas gift to myself (after the MacBook Pro) is the Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl.
I absolutely love this cookbook. All the recipes are easy to follow with a photo for each step. [Images from the Pioneer Woman]The Pioneer Woman also includes hilarious stories regarding each recipe. The photos of her lovely cattle and Mustang ranch are breathtaking too. I highly recommend this book for any food lover, wanna be cook or fan of the Pioneer Woman.

I noticed on the Pioneer Woman’s website, that she had recently made t-shirts for her (awesome cookbook) book tour. They are snazzy dark brown with a rainbow colored vine and flower. I was curious about the shirt company,
Wild Olive tees, so I followed the link to their site.

Wow, they have some beautiful and faith-based designs. I’m seriously considering the Such Things one for my Mom, or Grandmother.

Philippians 4:8 Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.

Transform your mind also has a neat design and message! [Images from Wild Olive]

Another fun and silly gift, is the pickle ornament! I found this ornament at Crate and Barrel.
“A dilly of a decorative ornament. An age-old German good luck tradition, this realistic, handpainted glass ornament adds a touch of pickle personality to holiday decorating. The last ornament placed on the tree, whoever finds it first gets an extra gift from St. Nick.”
I am fortunately nearly finished with my holiday shopping. I wrapped the majority of the presents last night!! I just need to find something for my grandfather and my sister’s boyfriend. I’m thinking wine is a nice safe option. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanksgiving night and putting up the Christmas tree!

Thanksgiving was a blast at my grandparents house. My parents, one of my sisters, my maternal grandparents, an aunt, two uncles and a cousin were all in attendance. (My middle sister is currently with her boyfriend’s family in Mexico!) My favorite part of the meal was the turkey (light meat, please) with cranberry wine from the Olympic Peninsula.

It was great to catch up a little with my sister, Katie! She’s been super busy in nursing school across the state. Hopefully, I’ll see more of her this weekend, before she goes back!
I was sooo excited to wake up this morning, to start decorating our Christmas tree! After a nice run over the Ballard Locks, we started putting up the ornaments. We’ve had a great tree for the last three years that we keep in storage during the non-Christmas season. My husband and I realized the first year we had a tree together that the cats ate the needles. Also, when Lyra was a kitten, she tried to climb the Christmas tree.
[Christmas 2007]
Thus, our sturdier plastic and wire version holds up better with our kitties. Plus, they just love to lounge underneath the tree all day!
[This is a picture of Lily Thomas and Lyra from last Christmas!]

We have so many ornaments already, that I only purchased a few irresistible ones this year. I found this darling red, white and blue sailboat at Crate and Barrel last month.

I also couldn’t pass up this squirrel from Crate and Barrel! It reminds me of Lily Thomas, especially the tail! It also goes well with the reindeer, fox and raccoon of similar brush material that we found at Macy’s a few years ago.
I absolutely love this knit ornament from Anthropologie that I found in a after Christmas sale last year. The little dog looks like my childhood pet, Millie, a black and white English Springer Spaniel.
This metal cowboy is an older favorite ornament that my mom used to hang with the Christmas wreaths!
Our wedding cake toppers hang on our tree too!

This is our tree so far….

We have only unpacked about half of the ornaments this evening, mainly my favorite ones! I may need to survey the ornaments at my parents house before I stop decorating!
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Ev’rywhere you go;
Take a look in the five and ten glistening once again
With candy canes and silver lanes aglow.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Toys in ev’ry store
But the prettiest sight to see is the holly that will be
On your own front door.

Turkey and Thanksgiving Facts!

The First Thanksgiving, reproduction of an oil painting by J.L.G. Ferris, early 20th century.

Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. (neg. no. LC-USZC4-4961)

Turkey Facts

Will you be having turkey for Thanksgiving? You aren’t alone –
97 percent of Americans have Turkey for Thanksgiving.

Here are some fun facts to share with your family during the celebration!

* A male turkey is a tom. A female is a hen. Babies are called poults.

* Ben Franklin liked the Turkey so much he thought it should be the
official bird of the US.

* A hen lays around 115 eggs a month which take about 28 days to hatch.

* A mature turkey has 3,500 feathers. Turkey feathers were used by Indians
to stabilize arrows.

* The largest turkey on record was 86 pounds.

* Wild turkeys can run 20 miles per hour and fly 55 miles per hour.

* Only the tom turkey gobbles. The hen makes clucking noises. A tom’s
gobble can be heard a mile away.

* A group of turkeys is called a flock.

* Turkeys have lived in North America for 10 million years. Forty-Five
million are eaten at Thanksgiving.

* At the first harvest celebration with the pilgrims and Native Americans,
“fowl” was eaten. While this might have been turkey, it’s more likely to
have been geese and ducks.

* At current Thanksgiving feasts, over 675 million pounds of turkey
are consumed.

* It is NOT the turkey that makes you sleepy after a Thanksgiving feast.
Tryptophan can only make you sleepy if taken on an empty stomach
without protein – hardly the case on Thanksgiving! It’s the carbohydrates
in the other foods we eat with our meal that make us sleepy – neither of
which are traditional from the original pilgrim’s diet.

Thanksgiving history:

* Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November
in the United States.

* By the fall of 1621 only half of the pilgrims, who had sailed on the
Mayflower, survived. The survivors, thankful to be alive, decided to give
a thanksgiving feast.

* Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the second Monday in October in Canada.

* The Plymouth Pilgrims were the first to celebrate the Thanksgiving.

* The pilgrims arrived in North America in December 1620.

* The Pilgrims sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to reach North America.

* The pilgrims sailed on the ship, which was known by the name of ‘Mayflower’.

* They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day in the fall of 1621.

* They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day at Plymouth, Massachusetts.

* The drink that the Puritans brought with them in the Mayflower
was the beer.

* The Wampanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how
to cultivate the land.

* The Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first
Thanksgiving feast in the year 1621 and invited the neighboring
Wampanoag Indians also to the feast.

* The first Thanksgiving feast was held in the presence of around ninety
Wampanoag Indians and the Wampanoag chief, Massasoit, was also
invited there.

* The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days.

* President George Washington issued the first national Thanksgiving
Day Proclamation in the year 1789 and again in 1795.

* The state of New York officially made Thanksgiving Day an
annual custom in 1817.

* Sarah Josepha Hale, an editor with a magazine, started a Thanksgiving
campaign in 1827 and it was result of her efforts that in 1863 Thanksgiving
was observed as a day for national thanksgiving and prayer.

* Abraham Lincoln issued a ‘Thanksgiving Proclamation’ on third October 1863
and officially set aside the last Thursday of November as the national day
for Thanksgiving. Whereas earlier the presidents used to make an annual
proclamation to specify the day when Thanksgiving was to be held.

* President Franklin D. Roosevelt restored Thursday before last of November
as Thanksgiving Day in the year 1939. He did so to make the Christmas shopping
season longer and hus stimulate the economy of the state.

* Congress passed an official proclamation in 1941 and declared that now
onwards Thanksgiving will be observed as a legal holiday on the fourth
Thursday of November every year.


My Christmas list…

Have a wonderful thanksgiving everyone! i’m thankful for my family and my kitties. Also for my early christmas presents that i’ve already received!! I’m Excited To Put Up My Christmas Tree tomorrow!

The Country Manor Top From Anthropologie reminds me of childhood. I love it!

Oooo, these Decadent Sunglasses from Anthropologie would be perfect for our upcoming vacation!

I’ve been Drooling over the Rock out with your cupcake out Tee from Cupcake Royale for the last few months! I just saw on the Cupcake Royale Facebook Page:

Cupcake Royale HAPPY THANKSGIVING! We are open on Thanksgiving and having big sale fun times on Friday. Come check out the holiday goodness Royale! Hoodies for $25. tees for $10. And 10% off all other merch, including gift packs! Friday – Sunday.”

I count Julie and Julia as a major inspiration for this blog so I’m super psyched for the author, Julie Powell’s second book, “Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession“!

7 NORITAKE Colorwave Pasta Bowls in blue
to complete our set!

Ideas of what to do in Prague, in September!!!
[Image from Flickr Uploaded on June 7, 2009
by Mike G. K.]

Alyson Jones Studios and Jewelry

A friend from work told me about this beautiful wooden jewelry website today. Check out my new favorite Etsy shop by Alyson Jones!
It’s currently drizzling in Seattle tonight. How perfect are these earrings? I think I just bought the last pair of these “Ode to Seattle” hand painted wooden earrings, because they’re all sold out now!

I guess it’s as they say ‘Early Bird Gets the Worm‘! Aren’t these birds adorable?

The artist writes, “I’ve been working with acrylics for over 12 years and recently decided to merge my painting passion with my childhood love for jewelry making! All wooden jewelry is hand-painted with acrylics and ink. The products are finished with an un-yellowing clear coat varnish.”

These Tree Love, Hand Painted Wooden Earrings by Alyson C. James are so sweet and lovely too.

This talented Seattle artist, not only makes charming hand painted wooden earrings, but she currently has several pieces of art on display through November, at the Art On The Ridge Gallery on Phinney Ridge (Greenwood Avenue). You can also view her acrylic paintings available for purchase at!

I love finding local artists. What local talent do you follow?