When the cool weather comes I start to really enjoy cooking and baking.  I make this carrot soup…so easy.  Dump some baby carrots, celery, chopped onions (I use the frozen ones), chicken broth, a little salt, and a ton of dill in a pot.  Cook over medium heat until carrots are soft – about half an hour. Mash everything up with a potato masher (you could use a food processor to make it all smooth if you wanted to, but I like the chunks).  Cook about 10 minutes longer and it’s done.  I eat it just like that, but my boys like it with a little ditalini macaroni added to it.  You could use any small macaroni.


I also made a  quiche.  I used this recipe for the crust and this one for the filling….SO GOOD!  I omitted the onion and garlic in the recipe and switched out the mozzarella cheese for american.


The crust recipe was for a double crust so I saved the 2nd crust until I was ready to make a pumpkin pie which I had for breakfast this morning :o)

Sailing takes me away

Did a little garage sale-ing.   Little J got a lot and I got a little.  One of the things I got is this little cutie set…


Sorry for the blurriness.  Now I know some will think this is hideous, but someone from my childhoold had this set.  It may have been my grandma.  I can’t remember for sure, but regardless it’s nostalgiac for me.  So for 3 bucks I had to have it.

The Dining Room

So we may not be moving.  The real estate agent believes that we may not sell the house for as much as we owe…or we might be able to sell it for what we owe…or maybe just a little bit more than we owe.  Either way the outlook doesn’t look good.  The smarties that we are bought the house at the height of the market.  Go us!  Stay tuned on that.  For now let’s look at the dining room.  This is what it looked like when the previous owners had it…


Some storage units on the right and left.  I love the pub table.  And the hideous light fixture.  Oh and little J looking all small and squishy!

Here is the cat they had – he was 22 years old!!!


And here is what it looks like today.  Too large of table for the room.  Storage to the right and that same ugly fixture!


I would like to get a smaller table and have some built in storage and shelving to the right…and a new fixture!

Pretty Storage

This is my diaper caddy.  It’s one of the baskets from my scrap room repurposed…


The Jersey Shore

I think most people who grew up in NJ have some fond memories of the Jersey Shore.  In northern NJ we don’t “go to the beach” – we “go down the shore.”  I love the ocean and the sand.  The minute we cross the Raritan Bridge a sense of calm comes over me and I get happy.

A couple of weekends ago we had our last hoorah for 2009 down the shore.

This is the Boardwalk.  Coin Castle arcade to the left, Midway cheesesteaks, sausage sandwiches, etc. to the right…




Games (he got it in and won an adorable polar bear)…


More games…


Some love…


Beach fun…


Sandy hands…


This is beauty to me…


…and I don’t even go on rides…


Some may complain about the traffic or the crowds, but none of that matters to me.  This is just plain good for my soul…



So I was painstakingly removing the stickers from the bottoms of these cutie/funny mugs I found at the Target Dollar Spot…



And as I was getting frustrated picking and picking at that sticker I discovered irony…


Isn’t it ironic…dontcha think?

The House

As I said in my last post we’ll be moving.  I’ve decided to do some before and afters of the house we live in now.  It’s no secret to anyone that knows me that I don’t love this house.  It’s too small and it’s not any sort of style that I like.  I also feel like it’s limited as to what you can do to improve it without major construction.

Keep in mind we moved from this house…


Our intention was to downgrade, but we downgraded too much.  I was in a bad funk at the time and I totally settled.

This is the day we got it inspected…before we closed on it. I’ll post some true before and afters once I’ve straightened up and taken pictures.  I’ll address each room in a different post.

This is the front of the house.  What style is it?  Doesn’t really have one!


Let me just say I love houses.  I could spend days going to open houses and not get bored.  Look I’ve found a blog about houses  and was so excited to see this post so I could look at other people’s houses…my friend Nancy says I have a sickness.  Could be…I don’t know why I love them but I do.  I get sooo excited when one of my friends moves or redoes something in their house because I can’t wait to see it!

Now that I sound all stalkerish and weird…being that I am so passionate about houses for me to live in a house that I don’t love feels very stifling to me.  So really the bear was just the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Time Flies

Wow it’s been a long time.  A lot has happened in almost a year.  We have a new little baby in our family…


We’ve decided to move due to the level of comfort the bears have with coming close to the house. This bear walked literally 3 feet in front of my front door…


And I decided to start blogging again.  This blog started out as a scrapbooking blog.  It changed to more of a baking blog.  Now I’ll probably document our moving process.  And I’m sure it will move in a different direction after that.  This blog has now come to be about all of the different scraps of my life.  It is, in essence, my very own scrapbook!



Raspberry Squares

Made some raspberry squares by modifying this recipe.  The modification I made was to take out the almonds and instead add 1 and 1/2 tsp almond extract to the wet ingredients.  Very reminiscent of the linzer tarts, but wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy easier to make!

The dough pressed into baking dish with raspberry jam spread on top…

Crumbled the rest of the dough over the top…

After baking…

It’s important to make sure they are completely cooled before cutting them up.  I love the way they look…

And packaged up for Leslie’s birthday…

The box is a candy box from Michael’s.  The ribbon is seam binding from One Hundred Wishes.

I will definitely make these again.  I bought some apricot preserves to try next time.