Wednesday, December 16, 2009

cookies for christmas??

one of the things i have done in the past for gifts...circa last cookies in a jar!
fun and easy to make, plus who doesn't love the cute jar and fresh cookies as a gift, right??? here's a few of our fam fav's...right off of {click the cookie title for the direct linky to the recipe}

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1 1/4 cups flaked coconut
1 cup cornflakes cereal, crumbled
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
mixed with: 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1 teaspoon baking powder

Layer the ingredients into a 1 quart canning jar in the order they are listed. Press each layer firmly in place before adding next ingredients. it will be a tight fit.
Attach a label with the following instructions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Empty the contents of the jar into a large bowl and use your hands to blend thoroughly.
Stir in 1/2 cup butter, 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Mix until completely blended. You may need to use your hands. Roll dough into walnut sized balls and place them 2 inches apart onto greased cookie sheets.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup orange flavored dried cranberries
1 cup vanilla or white chips
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a 1-qt. glass jar, layer the sugar and brown sugar, packing well between each layer. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; spoon into jar. Top with oats, cranberries and chips. Cover and store in a cool dry place for up to 6 months.

then add this note to each jar...
To prepare cookies: Pour cookie mix into a large mixing bowl; stir to combine. Beat in butter, egg and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Drop by the tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 375 degrees F for 8-10 minutes or until browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.

1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup white sugar
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
Combine the flour, baking soda, white sugar, and the chocolate chips. Place 1/2 of the mixture in a clean quart sized glass jar, and pack firmly. Place the brown sugar on top, again packing firmly. Place the remaining flour mixture on top. Cover with a lid.

Attach an index card with the following directions:
Empty contents of jar into a large bowl. In separate bowl combine 3/4 cup of butter, 1 1/2 eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until creamy. Add to dry mixture. Drop by tablespoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and bake in a preheated 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

have fun making those gifts!

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

{Gifts For The Writer or Book Lover}

I was looking for a particular journal for a friend's birthday gift and I finally tracked it down at Chronicle Books. I've never visited their site before and I was really amazed at all of the cool book options that they have for really everyone on your list from Kids to New Parents to Cooks to Crafters & Gardeners. They really have a lot of cool, interesting books and I just had to share. Plus, I found a PROMO CODE {gotta love that!}. If you create a NEW account with them, enter the CODE: GETBOOKS at checkout and receive 30% off your purchase AND FREE SHIPPING!

I really love the idea of a Gratitude Journal - a special place to keep good thoughts and blessings. This one offers prompts as well which I think is a great outlet to explore other things we are grateful for. $14.95

One Line A Day is a great way to keep track of thoughts and memories, a mini-journal if you will. $16.95

I was introduced to this book when I saw the Authors on Oprah. They made me laugh out loud and I can't wait to get my hands on this book! $18.95


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Wednesday, December 9, 2009

{Season's Greeting}

This is the first year, ever, that I am not scrambling at the last minute to send out holiday greetings to those I love. Don't think it's because I'm UBER organized, because lately I have not been. It's because we had family pictures taken this year in October and the photographer was having a sale on holiday cards. So I happily hopped on that bandwagon and ordered set. My greeting cards are addressed, stamped and ready to ship as we speak!

But as I sit here, feeling all organized, I started thinking of my fellow seasonal procrastinators and I felt a need to help! I came across this wonderful paper company while reading {yes, I read...magazines} the December issue of Better Homes & Gardens. I love all kinds of stationary, especially letter pressed stationary, and Linda & Harriet offer a beautiful selection.
Here are a few samples of their Holiday Greetings.

I love their variety of traditional and a little more funky styles. Makes me want to order extra greeting cards just for the fun of it....For more greeting card selections click here.

Kacey R.

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Tuesday, December 8, 2009

cute and easy gifts

i'm not sure how it happened, but the last week of school is upon me and i have no teacher gifts ready...and not a lot of money to spend either.

my friend, amy, at living locurto, designs all kinds of fun stuff, but here's a fab last minute printable pack for all your quick store bought or handmade goodies!

how cute are they????

in this pack you get a sandwich bag label, a small gift bag, circle tags, and small gift tags. and all for $6...and you can use your own standard sealing bags and dice them up!

want more information and to see the whole pack? head on over to living locurto and check it out!
danyele @ a thorn among roses

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Friday, December 4, 2009

stretching 101

a few things to remember when you are stretching....first, the best time to stretch is AFTER you exercise, because your muscles are warmed up. i'm a fan of jillian from th biggest loser...and she had the following tips:

stay hydrated...always. not just when exercising, but always. the 8-by-8 rule is a handy guide...drink 8 oz of water, 8 times a day. 64 ounces every keeps your muscles hydrated, cleanses your entire body of toxins, carries nutrients to your cells, keeps stuff moist that's supposed to be your ears and nose.

seems menial, but you need to breathe slowly and evenly. deliberate breathing delivers oxygen to your muscles.

stretch evenly. hold each stretch for at least 30 seconds. Be sure to st
retch all your muscle groups — if you stretch the front of the thighs (quadriceps), make sure you stretch the back of the thighs (hamstrings). also, stretch your whole body not just your legs — stretch your arms, back, neck, stomach, chest, etc.

maintain good posture and do the stretches correctly so as to not hurt your back or strain other muscles.

and where there are do's there are some things you DON'T do as well...

use slow, even movements when stretching. bouncing places too much stress on your muscles and joints and doesn't help you stretch better.

be patient, and never force your body to go where it doesn't want to. you will begin to see results if you keep at it.

don't overextend your joints. hyperextending (bending joints farther th
an they were meant to go) can cause injury and doesn't help you in any way. plus, it hurts!

Finally — if it hurts, DON'T DO IT.
always listen to your body. if you're stretching correctly, you should feel tension on the muscles, and possibly some slight discomfort. If you have any sharp or serious pain during a stretch or exercise, STOP, because you may do harm to your body. remember, pain is your body's way of telling you that something isn't right. If you do have an injury, ask your doctor about exercise and stretching and follow his or her advice.

get more fitness tips from Jillian Michaels! she's pretty awesome!

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Monday, November 30, 2009

One Way To Give

"Mitma" means "heart" translated from Chichewa. The jewelry above was designed and produced to benefit Raising Malawi. All proceeds from the sale of the necklaces benefit Raising Malawi directly. Raising Malawi was founded in 2006 by Madonna and Michael Berg to help bring relief and aid to the 2,000,000 orphans and vulnerable children living in Malawi.
By purchasing a necklace and showing your support you not only receive a beautiful piece of jewelry, but you are part of changing lives in Malawi. During this holiday season when we are all compiling and checking lists, seeing who was naughty and who was nice, why don't we keep the spirit of the season in mind and give gifts with purpose and meaning.

The necklaces range in price from $36 to $1,200. If you would like to learn more about Raising Malawi please click here.
and follow them on twitter...look here.

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Monday, November 23, 2009

etsy shopping list

it's the time of year where gifts and gift lists are on our minds...
here are some fantastic finds...all handmade...and all wonderful!

how cute is this little blue bird dish for your nana...or someone else? head on over to mud hutt for some awesome handmade little ditty's for everyone on your list...

wooden toys make my heart sing. i love these family dolls. they are custom made to look like your family {of 4 anyway} at naked peggies for $65.

mother's necklaces are a great gift idea, but what about an heirloom necklace? you can get names or dates, all sorts of things on this handmade prize. a great gift for your momma from amy cornwell.

shut up! i know, right? adorable beyond words!!! i mean, seriously preciousness in a hat!! i just bought this exact hat for my little nephew who is due in less than 2 weeks. i can't wait to see rowan in his puppy dog hat...$20 at handmade by jules!

look at how stinking cute your little chefs could be for making christmas dinner!!! love 2 things about this apron...first, it's way retro adorable and second, 50% of it's proceeds goes to cora's playground! $ aprons by punky fae on etsy.

sewn natural has this super cute, handmade elephant for that precious little one on your gift list. why not make a little gift a special one too? $16

just a few ideas...check back for more real soon! do you have any favorite things we should feature??? let us know!

danyele @ a thorn among roses

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

t-giving dinner time savers

i's thanksgiving dinner and you want everything homemade. here's the reality around my house...ain't gonna happen. too many responsiblities, 4 kids, and life!

so rather than stress about it, here's a few things i do to make things way easier...and honestly, the taste and outcomes always draw a big smile from the fam.

#1...definitely stove top stuffing
it's delicious, quick, and the taste is can even get the sage flavored. plus, the kids can make it and contribute! woo hoooo!

#2...cranberry sauce deluxe
still a little cooking, but easy peasy style! here's waht you need:
6 oz frozen cranberries
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup sugar
in a small saucepan over medium heat, mix sugar and oj together until well dissolved. stir in cranberries and cook until they begin to pop. simmer until you get the desired consistancy.


the bake and break rolls at the store anymore are by them to save the time and prep work and then doll them up with some awesome spreads. here's a few ideas:
  • A garlic-herb spread (blend softened butter or margarine with finely chopped herbs and bottled minced garlic or garlic powder)...recipe HERE for the spread noted in picture!
  • Cranberry-walnut-cinnamon spread (blend softened butter or margarine with finely chopped dried cranberry, chopped toasted walnuts and a few pinches of ground cinnamon)
  • Zesty lemon spread (blend softened butter or margarine with finely chopped lemon zest)
have a good time at thanksgiving dinner...not a stressful one! have any other tips to share? please do!!! i just might feature them right here!!!

danyele @ a thorn among roses

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

trio of trees...from cheri

i ran into cheri's blog when she left us a comment here at PCAH. she has some super amazing, and easy, projects that i fell in love with! i asked...she here's a fab post direct from her blog...

I bought all the supplies to make this little "TRIO OF TREES"

I used 3 styrofoam cones, 1-8 inches and 2-5 inches.
Chenille yarn in 3 colors (you can really do any colors)
straight pins with colored round heads
3 picks
glue gun

Glue the yarn on each cone, starting from the bottom, makes it easier.

Then randomly stick in your straight pins (or christmas balls)

You can do lots or a few of the straight pins...I like mine less busy! Stick your picks in the top...and you have a Trio of Trees!
Maybe I will keep this set for myself!
So many parties...I LOVE parties. So I had to join the fun...

go and see cheri HERE.

danyele @ a thorn among roses

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Monday, November 16, 2009

A KISS Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a wonderful day to spend with family and friends, with all the preparations by the time dinner is served, I have to admit, I'm usually exhausted!

And then a few year ago I remembered the old saying KISS, Keep It Simple Stupid! LOL

Autumn colored candles intertwined with branches and gourds.
Simple pumpkins craved out for a candle

Pumpkins & dried flowers

Or fill a basket, just make it simple and remember to keep you dinner simple too! It's all about the time we spend together...
Happy Thanksgiving to all my fellow bloggers!
xoxo, Cathleen

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