Saturday, 31 December 2011

Another Year...

Christmas swept away my time this December! Between my little sweetum' having an asthma type reaction to a virus, piles of sewing projects, baking, and runs to be run, I was strapped for time - and so blogging fell to the wayside. Sorry! With the bulk of the holiday travel over, and order slowly being restored to our home, I am well on my way to a regular routine again [ which is due in large part to the wonderful stocking Santa spoiled me with, filled with Oxygen and Runner's World Magazines, an Oxygen subscription, and chocolate haha; as well as the pylo-box my Awesome Hubby made for me!] And while Christmas is behind us calendar wise, December would no be complete without a Christmas post, so here are the highlights from our little celebration with my Amazing Hubby's side of the fam!

          Darius was the little lamb in our Nativity Pageant - so sweet!

Someone was really tired...but aren't their jammies cute!?!

Christmas morning in our matching family "p-jammies" [as Darius says]

The craziness of Christmas presents and stockings all before 10am church!

A brand new year is rolling in at the strike of 12 tonight; I love the fresh start that January 1st brings! Christmas is my favourite season and celebration, partly because of all the time that is slotted to spend with family and friends, and partly because of the proximity to New Years!  Looking to the future I am excited for all that 2012 represents, and all the goals I am eager to achieve - Happy New Years!

Monday, 12 December 2011

[for my] boys

I was a sewing machine Friday night![pun intended ha!] As I ticked items off my "Handcrafted Christmas" list, not only was I excited to give the little gifts, but I was excited to show all of you! Crazy, I know. Without further ado, here's a little preview of what will be tucked snugly into my little men's stockings:

I used the pattern and tutorial located here to create the little masterpiece pictured here [and the matching one for little brother Eli tucked safely away] and highly recommend it if you're wanting to make some ties for the wee men in your life. Not only was the tutorial clear and easy to follow, but the pattern pieces were awesome! Thanks to Amber at Very Homemade for helping me achieve the quality craftsmanship I desire in all my handcrafted goods!

Friday, 9 December 2011

Cookie Exchange

Last night my Relief Society had a Christmas program, a cookie exchange, and volleyball. If you had to guess, which two would you say I made it too? Sadly, I had a conflicting event that I couldn't miss during the Christmas program, but I made it just in time for the cookie exchange and volleyball! The cookies were an amazing assortment of colours, textures, and creativity - I can't wait to try them! My contribution to the exchange happen to be a very simple recipe - but always a crowd favourite. If you're looking for an easy yet elegant addition to your holiday fare, give these a go!

Meringue Surprise Cookies
shared with me by Alisha

4 egg whites
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups white sugar
16 caramels, cut into 1/3's

Heat oven to 250*F. Line two large cookies sheets with parchment or wax paper.

In a stand mixer, combine egg whites, salt, and vanilla. Beat until foamy.

Gradually add in sugar, beating until peaks form.

Pipe or spoon mix into 3/4" wide mounds 1" apart on parchment. Top each mound with a piece of the chopped caramels, then pipe or spoon mix on top, covering caramel piece completely.

Bake for 45-55 minutes or until crisp. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Cool for at least 10 minutes [or you'll burn your tongue on hot caramel!]

Makes about 48 cookies.

What is your go to recipe for cookie exchanges?

Wednesday, 7 December 2011


I have a special place in my heart for my nieces and nephews. Before having children of my own, I already had several nephews, and a few nieces. One of these nieces was a lone princess for a few years before being granted a female cousin [on her Dad's side of the family anyways.] And so this sweet niece and I would play, painting nails, brushing hair, and all other sorts of girlie adventures. We even went 'pink' camping one summer! On Christmas Day, this sweet niece is turning eight, and will be baptised and confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. In Honor of her birthday, and her baptism, I have been working away at a special gift, for this very special girl! Darius calls her 'Alexica' [pronounced Ah-lex-ick-ah], but to me, she'll always be my sweet princess Alexa even if she scratched a chunk of skin out of my face, while smiling, the first time I met her.  Here's a sneak peek at what I've been making for this special girl:

What handcrafted gifts are you eager to give?

if you would like to make a scripture bag purse of your own, check out this blog for the free pattern and tutorial!

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yup. Cookies. They're all over the bloggersphere right now, and all over my brain. Darius and I have been baking, cooking, and creating in the kitchen and I have to share! This recipe was requested by one of my sweet cousins who travelled in this past weekend, and so Natalie, I hope you enjoy making these for Calvin!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup earth balance

1cup honey

1 cup pumpkin puree
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder1/3 tsp salt
1tbsp cinnamon
2 cups fresh ground whole wheat flour*

3/4 cup oats

3/4 cup desiccated unsweetened coconut
3/4 cup dark chocolate


first, cream the earth balance [it is a vegan substitute for butter. If you want to use butter you can do so] then add the honey and continue to cream the mixture together.

second, add the pumpkin to the creamy mixture, and puree together.

Now, add all the rest of the ingredients, one at a time [pulse the mix in between additions to ensure thorough mixing of the dough] finishing with the chocolate chips.

bake in a preheated 350*F oven for 10 minutes. The cookies will look a little soft, but once on the cooling rack they set up quite nicely.

Enjoy these healthy treats with your family - or hoard them for yourself - and enjoy the sweetness of the holiday season!

What is your favourite holiday treat? Does it stem from great memories, or is it a recent discovery?
350F for 10minutes

Sunday, 4 December 2011


Yesterday family travel from near and far, gathering in a town outside of the big city to celebrate Grandpa James. We sang, talked, laughed and shed a few tears of joy and remembrance. The musical numbers were touching, the talks were humorous and yet focused on a eternal perspective, and family lingered long, not wanting to part ways. We gathered round Grandma long into the evening, enjoying a family meal, and cousin time. It seems that times like these have the potential to bring families closer together, and that is just what it has done for our family. We wanted to hold tight to one another, and not have to return to our homes scattered on both sides of the border. How I wish all my cousins were also my neighbours!
Memories shared, ice cream consumed, and photos taken, we parted ways, travelling home in the driving snow. The occasion was solemn, but the celebration was sweet. Thank you for teaching us the importance of family Grandpa and Grandma. We love you!

photo courtesy of PMG IMAGE, taken at my wedding May 2006

Friday, 2 December 2011

Reindeer Food

I am so excited for Christmas! Maybe its my personality, maybe its my two little boys with gleaming eyes, or maybe it's the fact that I never stop listening to Christmas music ALL YEAR LONG! Haha, maybe its a combination of the above ha!

I am ticking items off my list as per usual and stumbled upon these adorable tags:

Seriously so cute! I just printed mine off so I could get a little crafting done for the holidays!

Whats on your Christmas Craft list?