Sunday, March 14, 2010

Fun to come!

I had a Macy's gift certificate AND a 20% off coupon, so I decided that a treat was in order. Look what I found!

It's called Backyard Bugs and I think the cutest part is that it's shaped like a leaf! (Didn't notice that 'til I got it home.) Can't wait to give it a test run! There are some fun pictures of finished cakes online - here's a good one - although it appears to be professional -so don't expect mine to look like this.

While I was wandering around the internet, I stumbled across my next conquest. I seriously want a cookie cake pan! How cute is that, I mean really?

It's from Williams-Sonoma, and I'm considering hopping in my car right now so I can be there when it opens tomorrow. But really, it's going to be a challenge getting to work on time anyway with the time change, so I guess I'll have to put it off until a weekend trip.

In a magical land of peanut butter and chocolate...

Walk with me through the chocolate cupcake mountain range, topped with peanut butter snow. It smells good and it's beautiful.

So, last night/this morning I had one of the more memorable migraines I've had in a while - which means I got a late start on my plans. I did manage to make my goal - and it was so much fun! After whipping up a batch of cupcakes from a box, I made my first ever batch of Swiss Meringue Buttercream. If you're curious, I used a recipe found here, with help from here on flavoring. Since I'm pretty careful about raw eggs (plus I hate throwing yolks away), I used meringue powder - which worked great. I mixed in creamy natural peanut butter for flavor and added a little bit of salt because all I had was unsalted butter and unsalted peanut butter.

The texture is wonderful to work with - it's smooth and it pipes really easily - WAY faster than spreading frosting on with a knife. It has a glossy finish - very pretty.

The only drawback for me is that I'm not sure if it's going to be my favorite kind of frosting. It seemed a little bit too much like flavored butter on top of my cupcake. I think I need to keep looking for a frosting recipe that is still easy to work with, but more sugar & other flavor rather than butter.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

One small step for *insert runner's name here*...

The big news today is: I started running again. Admittedly, I was wearing jeans, a wool coat, the least supportive undergarments I own, and shoes that don't lace up, but I ran. All of three city blocks.

I have broken through the barrier! Tomorrow I'll put on actual running clothes and go for four blocks. Baby steps.

So, one small step for your average athlete, one giant leap for merryheathre!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Quilt Progress

I laid it out. At first, I was thinking "what have I done?" and I really didn't like it, but as I kept working, it all sort of came together and now I think it's going to be great!

I'm not sure if there's a trick to sewing it together so it'll stay square, but I'm just trying to be as consistent as possible. It'll have a narrow border, then a wider one, then the binding (although I may use the same fabric for the outer border and the binding).

Believe it or not, I took quite a while arranging and rearranging to make it look "artfully scrambled". I just came up with that phrase. You heard it here first. Artfully Scrambled.

Sleeping Beauty

The Bean was catching up on her beauty sleep the other night while I shopped online (or something), and I got this great picture of her peeking out from her sleepy state.

Don't you just want to rub her little pink tummy? (I do.)

Port Townsend is tasty town!

We have a creperie! And it is delicious! Water Street Creperie opened last Monday and I was there! They have all the options - breakfast, sweet or savory. They're located on Water Street (hence the name, duh MH!) next to Sport Townsend, in what used to be Bell Tower Art.

Along with the crepes - you can get a full array of espresso drinks. Plus, it's entertaining to watch them make the crepes. At first it's sort of zen garden with the "spready-outy-thingy" <--technical term, then the filling goes in and it's all about the flavor.

On my first visit I had a savory crepe since it was technically lunch - and split a sweet with someone. That sweet crepe (banana & Nutella) had me at hello. So delicious. The second time I got something called a Lemon Crumble that can only be described as heaven in food form. It tasted like 1000 delicious calories - butter(?), graham cracker, lemon curd, whipped cream... my mouth is watering even now.

Here we have one of the proprietors, taking my order - you may recognize him from the trip to Las Vegas last summer. Didn't we have fun!!! If he's half as good an owner as travel companion, this place will be huge!! Next time you're downtown, stop in for a crepe!

Posts coming atcha, rapid fire!

I'm going to try the multiple posts in one evening thing. Here goes:

First up? A random self portrait that I took to check my makeup.

Works better than my visor mirror. :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Catching up...

It's been a busy week or two recently. I'm not complaining. I like having lots to do. Last weekend was a little bit too much driving for me (to Bellevue, then Port Angeles, then back here in one day) - but I got this cute picture of Lillers while we rode the ferry. Her hair was super static-y and sticking up all over, but she managed to look quite tame in this picture.

Then, during last week, I visited my friend Nate and ended up standing outside talking until it started to get cold and dark. I spotted the moon, whipped out my camera, and here you have the best of the shots...

This most recent weekend, I baked chocolate cupcakes and decorated them with chocolate frosting and an assortment of sprinkles. They were a test of the new regulator on my oven, and a thank you/get well for my landlord. I also had a coworker over for brunch and made creamed eggs & peas on puff pastry, blueberry lemon scones, roasted vegetable galette and fruit salad. The food, if I may say so, was delicious! Very successful recipes. Sadly, I didn't get any pictures of cupcakes or brunch.

This evening, I'm proud to announce that I have finished all the blocks for the quilt of merryheathreness. Now, I just have to lay it out and assemble the quilt top (then do all the finishing, quilting, binding, etc). So exciting to be this much closer to a finished project!

Finally, in random news, when I was in Costa Rica I visited a handbag store called Mario Hernandez. The great thing was that there were all kinds of things that said "MH" on them. The unfortunate thing (for me) is that they were quite expensive. So, I shelled out for the cheapest thing I could find - a purse decorate-y thingy that has a leather M and H and a unicorn. See below.

But, then I needed a purse to put this thingy on, and I couldn't afford the ones that I really wanted, so I joined It's like netflix for purses! I get a new purse every month without breaking the bank! I'm a fan so far. Here's the first one I've gotten. It's Calvin Klein, and fabulous.

Well, that's all for now. Must get some sleep. Tomorrow after work I'm helping teach swing dancing. Fun stuff!