Monday, October 20, 2008

Cookie Monster

Do you ever just have one of those days where you get 'obsessed' (I don't know if that's the right word, but I couldn't think of another one) with doing something? Some days I just really need to clean the house...all day (my husband probably wishes that day came along more often), or work on sewing/quilting projects...all day (that's most days, but with work and life, time just doesn't allow) know what I mean? Well, on Saturday, I really, really felt like making cookies...a lot of cookies!

I made four, well really five because I changed one up a bit after it was made, different kinds of cookies.
Clockwise from left: Prudy's Spicy and Soft Ginger Cookies...these are so good...the little bit of pepper really adds a nice kick...and they are soft! Prudy's Pecan Praline Cookies...these were quite tasty, but I think I let my topping cool too just doesn't look as beautiful as her's, but it tastes good! The next cookies are the same cookie as the pecan praline, but without the topping...I made a chocolate ganache and made cookie sandwiches out of them with the ganache as the filling. Finally, right in front are one of my ultimate favorite cookies - Peanut Butter Blossoms by Hershey's...chocolate and peanut butter - what more could you want!
I also saw this neat little gadget on Thimbleanna's blog and I instantly knew I had to have one! I ordered it from Ebay because the only other place I found it online was Amazon Germany and they wouldn't ship it to the US...I think that's what it was in German, but I recognized a form of the word problem on the address page.
So, I also made these shortbread cookies to celebrate Halloween! Using my fun new tool, I stamped Halloween on them. I love grandmother always used to make it during the holidays and I have missed it during the years since she passed away. Now I can make my own! Using the leftover ganache I dipped the bottoms in the ganache and then some of them in some sugar I colored orange...I think it looks a little festive. I also made some that say Be Thankful, too.

Well, I think I have enough cookies to last for quite a while...I think I'll stick some in the freezer. If you happen to come across the Cookie Monster...send him my way! =)
Thanks!!! Have a great week!
Wednesday, October 15, 2008

What to do with my Scraps?

A few days ago I received my scraps in the mail from JCHandmade's Spare a Square swap (sorry about the bad was hard to get them all in the picture).
I'm part of group 6 and I am excited to get started on my project. The rules are that I need to use all 10 of the scraps and I need to finish it within the next week or two. I'm having a hard time deciding what to do. I'm thinking of making a table runner, or maybe a mini doll quilt, or maybe a wall hanging with some stitchery mixed in. Some of the people participating are already done...and they have made some amazing items! If you want to check out their work, please click HERE to see the flickr group photos. The applique pillow that looks like a flower is particularly gorgeous and amazing! I wish I had that creativity and genius...well, I'll post my finished project when I'm done! =)
Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Body Worlds

Can I just tell you how amazing the human body is!!! Last Saturday, my cute husband and I went to the Body Worlds exhibit at The Leonardo in Salt Lake City. If you live in the area, I would recomend that you go! For those of you that might be a little squimish, please know that it isn't gross at all...but rather educational, instructive, and inspiring. It was interesting to watch people moving their hands or other parts of their bodies while looking at the exhibit...learning about what makes their body such an awesome machine.

Even though I'm a nurse, and I also student-taught human anatomy (in the cadaver lab) for three years, I still learned a lot at the exhibit. It was really nice to put some things in perspective. For example, we know that the average human heart pumps about 18,000 gallons of blood A DAY, which sounds like a lot...and is a lot...but, when you see a room full of huge oil drums as representing a day's work of the heart, you really begin to see what an amazing organ that is. The lungs were another really neat thing to look at. Also, how migraines affect the brain...I get migraines so this was something I really wanted to see.

One of the areas that I was really touched by was the area on babies and human development. They had varying stages of embryonic and fetal growth. For those of you that have read my 'Little Baby Feet' post, you can probably understand why I was so touched by this. And, I think anyone that has experienced a miscarriage would feel the same way. When you experience a miscarriage it feels like a bad have no proof...nothing that you saw (besides the pregnancy test) or felt to prove that you were pregnant. I have lost babies at 6 weeks, 9 weeks, and 11-12 weeks. It was further proof to me that there really was a baby in there. The one at the exhibit that I was most interested in was the one at nine weeks. At nine weeks, the baby has arms, hands, and has legs, feet, and looks like a very miniature person. Even though I never saw that or felt that when I was pregnant, it doesn't mean that it didn't exist. I was so touched, and surprisingly comforted, as I saw these babies and had to blink back the tears. I think it was nice for my husband to see he squeezed my hand and gave me a hug as we walked through.

Another area I found touching was on organ donation...I am an organ donor, and I would be honored to know that in my death I gave someone another chance at life...althougth I hope I don't die for a really, really long time! =) They had a letter that someone had written after receiving a new heartfelt and moving.

I know that there is a lot of controversy over the Body Worlds in general throughout the country, as it is a traveling exhibit. But, all that aside, it was an amazing exhibit...very educational and inspiring. Both my husband and I left with a greater appreciation of our bodies and how to treat them...we want to be healthy and happy. How grateful I am for my body, even with its limitations, and for the amazing things that it does every day for me without my even thinking about it! Our bodies truly are an amazing gift!
Sunday, October 12, 2008

I'm Addicted! name is Anna...and I am addicted to making bags! =)

It all started with Linda's Bag/Bucket swap, and with all of the inspiration I see on other blogs...not to mention all of the really great tutorials out there...I just couldn't help myself! I really like making things and giving them away as gifts, so I've been giving away some bags lately as birthday presents. I used the tutorial at Pink Penguin as my starting point for all of the bags, but of course had to change things up a bit!

I posted about one of the bags that I made for Rick's youngest sister's brithday a few weeks can read about it HERE. A couple of weeks ago, another of Rick's sisters (he has six sisters) had a birthday, and I decided to make her a bag to hold her present. I chose more warm colors, not only because we are going into fall, but also because I think they fit her better. Here is the bag that I made her:

Last Friday, was my mom's can read about her in my previous post. For her birthday gift, she requested that I make one of my bags for her in blue colors...she wants to wear it with jeans. She also requested it be a little bigger than the others I have made, and also that it have longer handles. I still used the Pink Penguin tutorial...just changed the dimensions to fit what I wanted. Here is the bag that I made for my mom:

I also put a pocket inside (and probably should have smoothed out the lining before taking the picture---oh well):

Now....I think I need to make a bag for myself! =)

Hope you have a great day!!!
Friday, October 10, 2008

It's Your Birthday - Shout Hooray!

Today is my mom's birthday!!! Happy Birthday, Mom! So, in honor of her, I thought I'd tell you all what makes my mom so amazing and special:

First, a little about my mom. Her name is Christina and she was born and raised in Sweden.
After finishing schooling Sweden, she came to the USA to attend BYU for a couple of years and then returned to Europe. She joined the LDS church when she was 18. She speaks several languages, has traveled all over, served a mission for the LDS church, and has led a pretty interesting life, which she writes about on her blog, My Swede Life (go visit her blog and leave her birthday wishes!). She is the only one from her family that doesn't still live in times, I think she really misses them.

She met my dad, Gary, in Frankfurt, Germany...she was working for the LDS church and he was in the US Army stationed there. They were married August 21, 1975 civily and then sealed in the Bern, Switzerland LDS temple the next day. Here is their engagement picture:
In 1976, they moved to San Diego, California, where my dad was from, and on August 25, 1976, I was born. Here are some pictures of me and my mom...doesn't she look amazing for having just had a baby!!!!Three years later, my brother, Erik, was born October 2, 1979...and no, that's not him in the picture above - still me. But, I was a big sister! =) My parents only had two children so now it was on to raising us and enjoying life. Now, many, many years later, we all live in Utah, and my mom is a Farmor (grandmother in Swedish...means father's mother because it's my brother's child, Logan, so my mom would be his father's mother) and she is a wonderful grandmother! Here she is playing with Logan: Some of the things that I admire most about my mother:

* She is one of the most beautiful women I have ever known, both inside and out...she is sweet, kind, and loving.

* She is always happy...I remember growing up that she would bring us breakfast in bed during the school year and always wake us up with a cheerful greeting.

* She has a lot of patience and I don't think I've ever seen her really angry.

* She is SUPER smart and loves to learn. I remember many a long night in school when she would stay up with me helping me to memorize and learn things for school, even though she had to work the next day. Thinking back, I'm sure there were many nights where she got little sleep, but she was always willing to help me when I asked.

* She is my biggest cheerleader...she has always encouraged me to be the best that I can be...she and my dad have always led me to believe that I can do whatever I put my mind too...they have given me the drive to be the best that I can be.

* Several years before I was married, my mom injured her hip....and we still to this day have no idea how it started or how to fix it, even though she's seen just about every kind of doctor there is....I know that her hip causes her pain a lot of the time, but I never hear her complain...she is such a good example to me.

* She loves to play games...especially Sorry, Boggle, Chinese Checkers, Backgammon, and card games. We always have lots of fun playing games together. I call Boggle 'our game' because we are usually the only ones who want to play that one.

* She is fun and usually up for anything, even if it involves lots of walking or hiking (because of her hip) and she always seems to keep up and be having a good time!

* She is an amazing cook! She loves to try new recipes and we are the lucky recipients!

* Should I have kids someday, she is the kind of mother I hope to be.

Mom, I hope you have a wonderful, happy deserve all of the beautiful things in life. Thank you for having me as your lucky and blessed I am to be able to call you my mother. I love you! =)
Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Another Swap!

Yes, I have entered another swap...
I really, really love scrappy quilts...especially scrappy quilts with lots of white, so this swap at Chickpea Sewing Studio is perfect for me! Want to get in on the scrappy fun? There is still time to sign up...the deadline to enter is October 15th, I think. I'm planning to send in my fabric this week and I'll be counting down the days until I receive my fabric back so I can start a new scrappy quilt! Did I ever tell you how much I love quilting!!! =)
Also, I just found out that my scraps from the Spare a Square Scrap Challenge swap are on their way to me. I'm so excited...I can't wait to see it waiting for me in my mailbox! =)
Friday, October 3, 2008

What Popsicle Are You?

You Are a Blueberry Flavored Popsicle
You are a very unusual person. For you, summer is all about adventure and travel.
You are brilliant and bright. Your mind is always sharp and working at full capacity.

You seek out new and different experiences. You get bored very easily.
You are very creative. Of all of the types, you're the most likely to invent a new popsicle.