Sunday, December 25, 2011

Friday, December 23, 2011

A review of the last month in photos

I made pies! Pumpkin and Apple

Here is the spread!

The table is set!

Christmas presents ready to go to michigan!

Mom came to visit in early april and brought us an early christmas present--this tree skirt she made in the spirit of my great grandmother's many felt crafts. The tree skirt is one of a kind and filled with little scraps tidbits from past projects. Isn't she talented?

The big green sequins are from my great grandmother's collection, and she also made the candy cane my mom repurposed here. The checked scarf is fabric from a pillow my mom made for Kitty Witty, one of my favorite stuffed animals when I was about 5.

Steph so graciously invited me to her ritzy work holiday party at the four seasons. Got to wear my junior prom dress again!

Buffet!! Ohmygod the mashed potatoes were amazing.

Steph wore her old prom dress too!

Then we took a few pictures by the gum wall:

Nathan with our Zipcar truck and our most beautiful christmas tree in the back!

Gdad sent me these stained glass dancers he made! They are based on pictures of me and look great in my kitchen window! 

Finally finished fixing up the bathroom! Here it is:

Kitty likes to jump in the tub

Holiday Party! A huge success. Here are the cookies I usually make with my grandma every year. This year I made them with Steph. It was exhausting, but look how pretty!

Here is the recipe direct from my grandma:

4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening (Crisco or some other non-butter shortening)*
1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese
1-1/3 cups sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg and set aside.  Cream together butter and shortening; add cream cheese and sugar beating until fluffy.  Add egg and vanilla;  beat well.  Gradually beat in flour mixture.  Divide dough in half.  Cover and chill 1-2 hours.

On lightly floured surface, roll dough 1/4 " -thick.**  Cut with cookie cutters.  Place on ungreased baking sheet.  Bake at 375 degrees, 7-9 minutes.  Cool on wire rack.  Frost as desired.  Makes 4-5 dozen cookies.

 * I have been known to use all butter instead of 1/2 butter and 1/2 vegetable shortening.

** The recipe calls for rolling out the dough 1/8" thick, but I have found that thin a cookie is hard to handle and burns too easily in the baking process.  I have better luck with somewhat thicker cookies.  All of this is up to you -- do what your experience tells you.

I made the frosting from powdered sugar, crisco, butter, vanilla, etc. The recipe was on the bag, but I really estimated amounts and it turned out fine.

Vegan Chocolate Cake! SOO good and SOO easy. Made this for my halloween party last year, this time I frosted it with some vegan frosting that was donated by Plum Bistro. 

Shortbread cookies!

I'm sorry this photo is awful. I made Andy's bread, Nathan made the goat cheese dip with garlic and herbs, Steph made cherry tomato, cucumber, and fresh mozzarella skewers, and then I bought crackers and tapenade from trader joes. 

The most beautiful tree of all time!!!!

Even Santa showed up to the party!

I know this picture is fuzzy, but it is the only photo where you can see my outfit! I got it vintage and it fits like a glove!

Stuffed mushrooms. Onion, garlic, spinach, thyme, mushroom stems, parmesan. Baked.

My fun little display on the radiator.

All ready for Christmas tomorrow! Working with Steph at Plum in the morning and early afternoon, and then a relaxing evening with my loving Nathan. We will miss everyone of course, but I don't think I have had such a low stress holiday in a while.