Sunday, June 23, 2013

Baby Fabric Basket

I think this might be my new staple baby gift.  This is the second Noodlehead fabric basket I have made .....and this one was as fun as the first!  I can't wait to make the third!  Stuffed full of diapers, wipes, and seventh generation baby goodies it feels pretty baby friendly to me.  I think for the next one, I will try to make some baby burp clothes and bibs.

Again, I used canvas for the main fabric and a striped fabric on the inside in corresponding colors (not shown).  I should have taken more pictures but I was up until 11 finishing it . . .and then I had to scramble to make a card after that.  It was a short night sleep wise since I had to get up early to take photos in the day light before heading to work to deliver the basket.

If you have not made a fabric basket yet. . . . . Take yourself right over to Noodlehead and purchase this pattern! She has a few other great ones as well but this one is a must have!

Monday, June 17, 2013

My Favorite Organic Carrot Cake

A few years ago I found this organic carrot cake recipe on the whole foods website.  It has become my absolute favorite carrot cake recipe.  Unfortunately I can not find the link to the recipe anymore so I am posting the recipe on my blog so that I will have it just in case I lose my hard copy. 

So just so we all know . . .for the record this is not my own recipe.  I try to do the right thing when I post someones recipe or design and link you over to their site for more information . . .but in this case I just can't. 

So here are the ingredients:


1 1/2 cups of organic sugar
4 organic eggs
1 cup organic canola or safflower oil
2 1/2 cups organic unbleached flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
4 cups grated organic carrots
1 cup organic applesauce
1 cup chopped organic walnuts or pecans


3 packages (8 ounces each) organic cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) organic butter, softened
1 package (16 ounce) organic confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups chopped organic pecans (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare two 9-inch round cake pans by lightly brushing them with melted butter or oil and dusting all sides with flour.  Shake our excess flour and set aside.  (I actually spray with cooking spray and use parchment paper for the inner circle - to cut the circle of parchment paper I just use the outside of the pan to trace the pan and then cut to fit inside the pan).  Either way works, I just prefer parchment paper so I know there will be no sticking going on.

Prepare you carrots by washing them in the sink.  This is a great way for a 3 year old to help.  I had Brooke stand on a chair at the sink and wash all of the carrots for me.

It was a very important job for her and she sang a song about washing the carrots the entire time.  She cracks me up.  We have a singing faze going on right now. . .we sing while we do everything.  

Once they are washed, grate 4 cups of carrots.  I grate and measure as I go and then save the left over carrots for dinner another night.  You can get away with a 1 lb bag of carrots for this project.  I bought a 2 lb bag so we can have carrots one night with dinner.

Next, in a large mixing bowl, beat sugar and eggs together until fluffy.  Stir in the oil.  Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon.  Stir the sifted ingredients into the egg mixture.

Fold in the carrots.

Then fold in the applesauce and nuts.  

Pour into prepared pans and bake 35-40 minutes, until done in the center.  

Invert on a cooling rack and cool completely before frosting. 

To make the frosting, cream together first 4 ingredients and blend until smooth.  Frost in between the layers.  Assemble cake and frost sides and top.  Decorate sides with chopped pecans or walnuts as you desire.

Can you say yum?

Oh ya!

Its delicious!  But it does pack a punch at 830 calories per slice.  Yikes. . .make sure you make after your long run day! :)

But so worth it!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

RB#2 - A scrappy skirt & play dough

I am excited to say that it is June 9th and I have at least one runway Brooke item done!  Woohoo!  And even though it is only a skirt. . .it is something!  Especially with the half marathon last weekend.  This weekend was the first time I have even made it to my craft room all week.

This morning I spent it making curtains for my kitchen and (I am embarrassed to say this) but camouflage curtains for my husbands hunting/fishing room.  Never did I see myself sewing camouflage curtains . . .but hey, sometimes you have to do the nice wife things to keep peace in the house.  

The skirt pattern is from the Skirt As Top tutorial.  The only change I made was to take out the middle strip.  This tutorial is easy to follow and a great basic skirt.  I will definitely be pulling this tutorial out over the next few years to use up scraps and to make Brooke many many skirts.  Fabric is leftover Amy Butler Lotus that I purchased to make my Birdie Sling Bag a few years ago.

This look is the Henry Hugglemonster face.  Just in case you didn't recognize the look.  It's the happy ROAR since we LOVED our new skirt.  I wish I could have gotten some better photos but the weather this week has been awful . . .rain rain rain!  And what little sunshine we have had, has been while I have been at the office.  Figures :(

Today Brooke and I made play dough again.  I really really like this recipe.  Its easy and has a really great consistency.  it also doesn't dry up as fast as store bought play dough.  You can find the recipe here:  Play Dough

I cut the recipe in half so that I can fit it into small ziploc containers.  Keep them in these and they wills stay fresh and can be reused for a while.  The last time I made her play dough was the beginning of the fall I believe.  Its been a while I know that.

Just adding some food coloring you can get such vibrant colors (way better than store bought play dough).  And its so cheap and quick to make.  Now I am not against store bought play dough (apparently there are a lot of parents out there that will not allow play dough anywhere near their children . . .I have no idea why or what the story or the warning is . .to each their own) but I do like to make things from scratch and save money.  So two thumbs up on meeting those goals!

Look at that red!  All I can think about is the very hungry caterpillar when I see the red and green.  So vibrant!

It was a great way to spend a Sunday together.  We made pancakes (Pancake Sunday is big at our house!), cookies, bread, and then play dough!

Trying to decide what is on our agenda for tomorrow.  Yes. . .I know. . .its Monday.  But  my office recently decided to try a 4 day work week so we have 3 day weekends for the rest of the summer.  We are still open 5 days a week but some of us have Friday's and some have Monday's.   Your 4 work days are also made up of 9 hour work days.

I have Mondays and tomorrow is the first day.  I am really excited! This will open up time for me to focus more at home and not spend most of my weekend cleaning.  I am an early riser (between 4/5 am) so I will have plenty of time to get some projects completed before Brooke wakes up (she sleeps until 8:30/9 if you let her).

I think tomorrow I am going to do some sewing :)

Monday, June 3, 2013

2013 Race #1 Down

I have been training for weeks now for the CBHM (Covered Bridge Half Marathon) race but I don't think I could have prepared for such a hard run yesterday.  It was brutally HOT!  Humid with highs close to 90 degrees.  Something we are just not use to here in Vermont in early June.  Last week we had snow, rain, and sleet for the Vermont City Marathon.  Just crazy extreme weather lately.

Although I did not beat my time of 2:00:30 last year coming in at 2:18:40 this year I am just happy to say that I ran the entire thing and made it the end without injury or sickness.  Many people were taken off in ambulances, passed out at the end, or were extremely sick at the finish line.  I have never seen so many people that sick.

In the end though it was a great day.  And Brooke came to see me run! . . .she clapped and cheered on the sidelines which was a BIG incentive for me keep running to the end.  This is the first time she has really understood running and for the past few weeks we have been running together at the end of my run up and down the side walk.  She gets so excited.  I Love it!  She's my motivation and my luck charm at the same time.

I have been seriously considering a full marathon in a few years when Brooke is a little older but yesterday when I got to mile 13 I remember thinking. . .I am so glad this is NOT the half way point.  Ugh. . .still thinking about it . . .but for now I will stick to the half marathons.  It took me a while to get here so it will take me a while to get to a full.  Just glad I can share these accomplishments with Brooke and hope it encourages her to push herself to reach her goals.
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