Saturday, December 31, 2011

happy new year

Sometimes life throws you a curve ball. Every year for the last say 6 years we have celebrated New Years with Tim's Sister and the family.  Now, everyone needs a year off so we're on our own this year.  Not a problem in the slightest. 

We originally were going to see friends this year.  Notice the past tense.  I have a sinus infection that has moved to my chest.  My head is killing me and my throat is screaming.  But I have the bestest Husband in the universe.  He got us seafood for dinner. And summer sausage.  He's the best. 

So its movie night for us and i'm sure Tim will be taking bets to see how long I last.  

Happy New Year everyone.  Stay safe... 

Thursday, December 22, 2011


I just love this shot of her in the Poinsettia room. The colors were fantastic.
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I opted to do something differnet this year. For the last 10 years or so, I have made a Polish Coffee cake for every sibling family on my husbands side.. and then some. Thats a lot of coffee cake if you know our family. Well, this year I couldn't do it. I have been seeing the salt dough ornaments all over the internets (yeah, thank you Pintrest) and I thought "Why not?".

Oddly, it's harder than it looks. The dough was sticky. It didn't roll right and drove me batty.

But I managed to make it work somehow. I have 3 designs overall (the last batch I had the worst time with so I got creative).

#1 is a Celtic Cross
#2 is a Celtic square
#3 is a dove of peace with a star.
I didn't count how many I cut, stamped, dryed and modpodged. But they are done.

Here's the recipe I used
2 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 cup water

Mix together. Roll out as best you can. I did it on parchment paper first then switched to wax when I ran out and knew the oven wouldn't be an option to dry them. You can toss them in the over for a couple of hours (depending on thickness) at around 200 degrees F once you have the cut out, stamped, whatever. Make sure you put a hole in it so you can run string or a ribbon through it.

I did use ink for my stamped ones. I had a nice black in that worked the best. I tried red and green - horrible. The cheap gold one I had worked ok too. In a different batch, erin and i painted them with water color after they dried.

Overall, I like them. I think I need a different mixture. I just hope the family likes them. Erin and I worked hard on them.
anyways.. Merry Christmas kids...
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a year in the making

I started this quilt last in 201o. I was almost done with it by Christmas 201o. All that needed to be done was the binding. It was bought and I started pinning it. And there it sat. Until this past week. I finished the bloody thing finally. Its really simple. 12 flats connected. Thats it. Nothing fancy. I wanted to see if I could do it. And I did. It sure does add color to the room. I made a pillow as well from the sheets I used to make curtains (flannel snowflakes - red and blue). I am pleased with it. Its not perfect but thats ok. It will keep us warm none the less.
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Originally uploaded by melblackrose
I took the girls to the Botanical Gardens.. really it was for me. I wanted a nice shot of the Poinsettia plants they have. I have never seen the display there. It was so pretty. I need to keep it in mind next year when I want to take a family photo.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Our Tree

Erin picks the tree out every year.. just because she's really good at it.
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stress during the holidays? Noooooo

I'm lying of course.  I had promised myself this year I wouldn't let the normal Holiday stress get to me.  With 2 families, a group of friends and a strict budget, things have been .. well.. stressful.
1) I lost a good 10 days due to a commitment with my hobby.  I'm not saying its bad, but I used those 10 days for that and not baking or making gifts thus putting me behind
2) With as big as a family as we have on my husband's side, there is bound to be some clashing of will and expectations and fighting.  Every year I have made a Polish Coffee cake to give to each family.  I have done this for 10 years.  I am not doing it this year.  Oh, fear not those family members who read my blog.  I will make one for Mom's house so we can enjoy it then.  But no family Placzeks this year my darlins. I expect to get backlash for not doing that this year.
3) We needed to introduce Krampus into the mix this year.  Apparently coal in the stocking didn't shock her enough to staighten her up from this past week attitude fest.  I have known about Krampus for years and I was holding back on it.. now granted there were a few years he could have easily made an appearence but didn't.  Well, this year, I have placed the fear of hell into her.  I know, I know.  But this is a bigger issue with Kids today.. they don't understand that actions have consequences and big ones sometimes.  I grew up knowing that if I messed up, God would be pissed and I was going to Hell.  You do not piss off the Big guy.  So Old School it is...
4) It doesn't LOOK like Chirstmas.  Yes yes, its not about the Snow.. but it makes everything look clean.
5) Back on the family thing - big family = tension.  So many freaking people in one place.  I love that family but boy, its loud and hot and I'll be drinking for sure to keep me sane (mental note - get wine).

On a good note,  I made cookies and fudge.  The cookies came out AWESOME (here's round 1). Cookies. Round 1 on Twitpic  I keep making trips to the kitchen and grabbing one.  That has become my breakfast and lunch.  Diet? Yeah, my doctor just needs to understand this is a minor setback.  Its Christmas for Christ's Sake!

So this weekend is the push to finish a surprise present and make the family gifts.  And find my dining room after the laundry room adventure.  That's a blog another day.  As soon as I charge my camera, i'll show you my new ...oops OUR new toys.