August 31, 2009

While eating this cake, James said, “Do you know the best part of this cake?  It is so full of carrots its practically healthy!”  …….yeah, I wish!
Here is a VERY good recipe my sister gave to me a few months ago (Thanks Mel):
Carrot Cake
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 cups oil (This can be halved if you have some applesauce handy-it works I promise!)
4 eggs
3 1/2 cups shredded carrots
Mix dry ingredients first, then  add oil and mix well.  Add eggs one at a time and mix well.  Add carrots.  Bake in a greased and floured 9×13 pan at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes.
Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup butter (I skipped this and added a few tablespoons of milk)
1 lb powdered sugar
(I added some vanilla also)
walnuts optional
My recommendation is to use this amazing product for this cake and all of your baking needs:
bakers joy

Advertisements

Italy

August 24, 2009

DSC_0195

The beautiful city of Florence at sunset.

DSC_0119

A closer look at the Arno River in Florence.

DSC_0111

What a great picture- my handsome husband on the Ponte Vecchio bridge.

DSC02353

The City of Certaldo.  We were only here for a few hours, but it left quite the impression.  To get the city, you must ride a follicular  up to the fortress.  The town was meticulously clean, with post-card beauty.

DSC_0225

Vernaza is a tiny town right on the Mediterranean in the north.   We didn’t spend much time here, but would recommend the Cinque Terre to anyone.

DSC_0061

Ah, the Colosseum.  It was so massive and truly impressive.

DSC_0050

The Colosseum was the first thing we saw in Italy.  We winded through a few neighborhoods… and there it was!

DSC_0315

The Vatican was my FAVORITE part of Rome.  I felt like I was going to faint from happiness the entire time!

DSC_0211

Before we reached Italy, I was terrified about long lines.  At the Vatican Museum, there was ONE person ahead of us.  We literally walked in (thank you random blogger that helped me plan our timing!!).   Inside, there were dozens of long halls PACKED with ancient art.  There was so much it was overwhelming!

DSC02244

Sadly, the Etruscan and Egyptian galleries were closed for the day.

DSC02242

DSC02303

We hiked to the top of St. Peter’s to see the view of the Vatican and Rome.  This is one of my favorite pictures.

DSC_0138

On top of Civita~ great views, once again.

DSC_0218

The best pizza I’ve ever tried was in Italy.  This is a nutella and creme pizza. Mmmm.

DSC_0231

This picture makes me so happy becuase it reminds me how I felt the entire trip.  Here I was, standing in front of this beautiful fresco I had learned about so many years ago, and had been aching to see.  It was very surreal at times.  I loved Italy, and I am so grateful I was able to go!

Wyoming

August 22, 2009

In July we drove up to the Wind Rivers in Wyoming (near Yellowstone) to go camping with the Kennedy’s.  This was a pretty rugged adventure (with more mosquitoes than I’ve seen anywhere else).  It was a lot of fun though, and here are a few pics:

TEMPPP 215

The biggest fish caught that trip was by ME!

TEMPPP 206

Four wheeling up to lakes on Granite Peak.  We crossed the continental divide here also. In the background, you can faintly see the Tetons.

TEMPPP 216

This was taken just a few feet from our campsite.

TEMPPP 167

I told you the mosquitoes were bad!  We went everywhere with these nets, and I NEVER took mine off (except for photos).

TEMPPP 181

This day was cold. The waves were right at my feet, and I felt like I belonged in the latest Harry Potter movie.

GREAT photography!

August 21, 2009

Msnbc.com has a GREAT feature called ‘The Week in Pictures.’  It is updated every week, but they are celebrating their 10 year anniversary with a special collection of photographs.  You won’t be disappointed, I promise!

These are two great examples:

blog

blog 2

To see the rest, click here:

10 Years of The Week in Pictures

First picture about ITALY

August 16, 2009

DSC02376Civita is a “dying” city, with only 14 permanent residents (plus a dog).  After seeing pictures of it online, we had to see it for ourselves.  This was a MAJOR highlight of our trip.

Long overdue, I know.  More to come very soon.

Home Improvement part II

August 15, 2009

Home Improvement or Late Spring Cleaning?

TEMPPP 037

James crawled out of our kitchen window and cleaned out the spider nests that were on the opposite side of the window, and covering the leaves leaning against the window.  Eww…

TEMPPP 038

Thanks, James.

Home Improvement

August 13, 2009

BEFORE

TEMPPP 156

After a coat of primer and two coats of black paint.  Sadly, I didn’t take a picture right after we took home this baby from the DI.

AFTER

TEMPPP 042

TA DA!

We are really excited about this piece of furniture because the hardware is exceptionally high quality, and everything is solid oak.  Total cost to redo: about $30.

The best part is the detail on top, which will be repeated on the center panels on front (eventually).

TEMPPP 043

TEMPPP 045

Just don’t look too closely at the corners…

Next, we sanded down some old night stands and stained them the same color as our bed frame.  Here is a look mid- project:

TEMPPP 158

The finished project:

TEMPPP 046

And now it matches the bed!  These only set us back about $20.

TEMPPP 047

Now I’m hunting for matching lamps…

Italy, I MISS you!!

August 8, 2009

TEMPPP 028

With garden tomatoes and fresh basil leaves from my mom, I knew I only had one choice….try to recreate some Italian cuisine that I’ve been missing.  I MISS Italy and I want to go back!!!

TEMPPP 036

This happened in about 30 seconds.  I just couldn’t help myself.  Who could resist this  stuff?