The Ginger bread House

Every year since my son was born we have made ginger bread houses. When he was really little we made houses out of graham crackers. That is the easiest to do with little ones.

Then when he got to be  about 4 or 6 we bought the prepackaged houses and would add our own candy.

It wasn’t till a few years ago that we started to make our own houses from scratch. I found a recipe  from a friend and we made our own dough. I drew the house out first and everything I wanted on the houses.Then I cut that out and put the houses together to make sure that it would fit. I actually had a few templates until I came up with one that worked. I then used those templates to cut out the dough.

After rolling out the dough, lay the templates on the dough and cut around. Place these sections on a bake  sheet and bake to temperature in recipe. As soon as the baked ginger comes out of the oven, clean up the edges with a knife. This will make it easier to put together when it is cool. Make sure the ginger is fully cool when you go to ensemble it. I found it helpful to have something for the walls to lean against when putting it together. Start with 2 walls and wait until that is dry before putting up everything else.

We love going to the candy store to find our decorations for the house. The other thing we do is save candy from my son’s trick or  treat bag. We put it in the freezer until December.

These pictures were our houses last year. I’m behind on doing this years houses. Hopefully we will get to it this weekend. I made the dough yesterday during our snow storm. This year I’m going to try a recipe from Martha Stewart. I down loaded her templates and cut them out. I’ll share it when we are done.

Enjoy this wonderful Christmas season.

Happy Holidays to everyone!

Tracy

Napkins for a Tea Party

I just listed these whimsical napkins in my Etsy store My Pretty Poppies.

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Over the next few days I will be adding the matching table cloths and napkin ring holders. The table cloths would fit a child’s 24 x24 table.

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They would make a great gift for a little girl or even a mom who would like to add a little whimsy to her home.

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I just love these colors. They are from the Tutti Frutti collection. The tea cup is from my china tea cup collection. When my mom moved the last time and we bought our house, she gave me all her tea cups.

When I was little we would have tea time. She would purchase lose tea, seep it, and then strain it into the tea cups. There is nothing like fresh tea made from flowers and herbs.

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Take a few minutes out of a busy day and grab a cup of  herbal tea. My favorite scenes in Masterpiece Theater Productions are those where the women and men are all dressed up outside enjoying tea. Zoe Wannamaker in The Old Curiosity Shop is shown in a wooded area sipping out of her tea cup when  the main characters in the show come up on her.  A scene from Emma ( I think it was that one) shows all the help lugging tables, food, and linens up a steep hill so there employers can have a picnic up on a hill. How romantic.

Enjoy and I’ll hope you join me in a spot of tea.

Have Fun!

Tracy

Pinewood Derby Time

This was our son’s first year at the Pinewood Derby in his pack. He decided he wanted to try Boy Scouts this year. He is in Weblos 1. We found a great den in the next town over from us. He is very active so we wanted to find a den that did a lot outside. His den leader is awesome with the boys.

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He worked on his car with his dad. He wanted to use the Weblo colors.

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The night before the race they weigh the cars and then confiscate them. They can’t weigh more then 5 ounces.

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He came in last for his group but he got the Scout Spirit Award for his design. He is already working on next years design.

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For Christmas we had bought him a kit to build. He had fun making that one to. Great project for the boys to build with mom or dad. They sell them at craft stores or hobbies shops. It’s amazing that all these cars started out looking all the same.

Have Fun!

The White Mountains in New Hampshire

The White Mountains is a great place to visit. Their is so much to do up here.

im000017 Check out this view. The mountain in the very back is Mount Washington. It’s known for  having the world’s worst weather.

North Conway sits in the Valley about 40 miles from Mount Washington. There are activities going on all year  up here.  If your an outdoor enthusiast like our  family, you will not be bored.

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We checked out the ice climbers at Cathedral Ledge. A very popular spot for climbers in the summer and fall and Ice climbers in the Winter.

The road is closed in the Winter so we had to Snow Shoe in. However they were a few 4 wheel drive trucks out there. We didn’t want to take  a chance so we put on our Winter feet.

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Another fun thing to do is Cross Country Skiing. There are many places to go. You can ski for free or pay for groomed trails. We chose to pay. I haven’t  skied  for about 13 years.  I wasn’t sure how I was going to do. It  was like riding  a bike, You don’t forget. The trails are groomed with groves for traditional Cross Country skiing or for skating style.

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It’s so peaceful out here. We saw people walking in boots only and snow shoes. In the Summer you can find Mountain Bikers, trail runners, and people walking their dogs.

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Their is so much you can do that doesn’t cost any money. We came home a day early to beat the snow. It’s not fun driving a 100 miles white knuckled.

Hope your enjoying your Winter as much as we are. I am ready for Spring though. Time to see flowers!

Enjoy & Have Fun!

Tracy

Colorful Finales

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I picked up plan wooden finales at the local craft store. I painted the main color  first and then went back with the trim color.

This is an easy project if your looking for something to match your decor.

After the paint has dried, I coated it with 2 coats of Shiny Polyurethane.

Let your imagination take off.

Enjoy & Have Fun!

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Notice the tiny

Polk-a-dots.

What colors do you like together? The combination’s are endless.

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Whimsy Banner Tutorial

im000057Make this easy banner in a couple of hours. On a piece of paper draw out a triangle the size you want the finished product to look like. Then add and inch around the edge of the triangle for seam allowance.

Cut out the triangle and use it for your pattern. I wanted 10 triangle so I cut out 20 pieces. I chose 2 different fabrics so the banner could be reversed.

Sew the two even sides, right sides facing in together. Leave the top of the triangle open. Now turn the triangles right sides out.

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Now Sew the tops of the triangles. As one was being finished I would push the next triangle through. The triangles all should be attached together.

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I used Double Fold Bias Tape, Quilt Binding to use for the edging. Start with one end and put a finish edge on the edge of the binding.

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Now open the bias tape and insert the tops of the triangles.

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Pin all the triangles into the bias tape.

im000046Sew the top edge of the banner leave 1/4 inch space. REpeat on bottom part of bias tape. Leave 1/4 inch space from the bottom.

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Here is the finished product. This side has the beads sewn on the front. Sew them on before sewing right sides together.

This picture below shows the other side.

Enjoy!

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Cake Idea

Cake Idea for Your adventurer

My son wanted a Indiana Jones cake for his Birthday this year.
I used the following recipe for the cake and the frosting.
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/1 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter
1 3/4 cups of sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
Combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
In another large bowl beat butter and sugar until smooth. Add vanilla.Add eggs one at a time.
Add dry mixture and milk, Alternate between the two. Pour into pan. I used 13x9x2 inch baking
pan.
Grease and lightly flour the pan before pouring batter in.
Bake at 375′ for 30 to 35 minutes.
Cool cake in pan on rack for 10 minutes before removing. Cool cake thoroughly before frosting.

Frosting
1/3 cup of butter
4 1/2 cups of powered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
milk
food coloring

Beat butter till fluffy. Gradually add 2 cups of sugar. Slowly add 1/4 cup of milk and vanilla.
Add rest of sugar.Add more milk if needed for frosting consistency. Add food coloring.

I used twine tied to tooth picks. I put the frosting on the twine so it would resemble vines. I mixed yellow, red, and blue to make the base of the cake. For the vines I used green mixed with some of the base frosting. I purchased the figures at a local cake shop.