Sunday, August 22, 2010


Good Lordy I am lagging!! But there's a good reason. Really. Well, Summer flew by. Since we live in a school district with a year round schedule we get a shorter Summer. But wow, this year's went quick. Before I knew it I was buying school clothes and supplies. With this new year, all my little men go to school around the same time and I actually have more time to get stuff done while they're gone. It's was amazing to walk into the house that first day and realize I had no kids for not 1, not 2 but 6 whole hours!!! What's a girl to do???
Well, of course, there's crafting. Did some of that. Also getting this photography thing going. I was very fortunate to have gotten a few jobs shooting up at the Chabot Space & Science Center. I had never been there before and my wonderful friend Sharon hooked me up. It is just beautiful up there. Who knew the Oakland hills were so beautiful? Not me. So along with my lovely assistant, Brittany, we made a few trips up there to take some pictures. It was so much fun and I am thrilled to finally be getting this off the ground.

I also have become completely obsessed with baking. It's seriously ridiculous. Jim was like, isn't the photography enough? Sadly, no. My most favorite thing to bake are cupcakes. I am on a quest for the perfect cupcake recipe. Now I thought I was good. I even learned how to use a piping bag and I have to say I was pretty impressed with myself. See?

Yummy French vanilla cake with Swiss buttercream frosting topped with fresh blackberries. Amazing. Then I finally got a chance to try a Cupkate. Ever heard of her? She is amazing. First off, she buys this used mail truck, converts it into a roach coach and sells cupcakes out of it. She goes to several locations in the Berkeley area and sells a variety of cupcakes everyday. Her name is Kate, hence the name CupKates. ANYWAY, I have been hearing about her for months. So Vincent, Britt & I were in the area about a month ago when she was by Scrapbook Territory and I had to try one. Ok, two. First, here's her cupkates. Cute right. Very simple, straight forward cupcakes. Flavors? Oh my, there was Creme Brulee, Key Lime Pie, double vanilla, double chocolate, smores, red velvet, lemon raspberry, and salted caramel. Drooling yet?

I mean look at them. So I got the double vanilla and a salted caramel and Vincent got the smores and the double chocolate. Can I just say they were like HEAVEN. I mean, seriously the best thing I have ever tasted in my entire life. I can't even describe how incredibly moist the cake was. And the frosting was like chocolate mousse. Just so delicious. I was shamed. My cupcakes were no longer so fabulous. I was just a mom who bakes cupcakes. Not cupkates. But fear not, I did not let this get me down. At least not for too long.

So I came home, jumped on the wonderful world wide web and began the furious search for the perfect cupcake. I printed a ton of recipes and today tackled one. Guiness cupcakes. I admit, I was aprehensive about pouring my beloved Guiness into a mixing bowl. For those of you who have drank Guiness, you know how incredibly bitter the Irish Stout is. It is definitely an aquired taste. And not in the least bit cupcake like. But throw in some Ghiradelli cocoa, some sugar, eggs and make a yummy chocolate ganache. I have to say they weren't half bad. Jim insisted he got a buzz eating them. I wish. Now they weren't even slightly moist. But they were very dense and I loved them. But I will keep plugging away. When I find the perfect recipe, watch out.
OK, that was my long cupcake story. I have also mastered the perfect lemon bar. I had never had lemon bars before but had heard everyone rave about them. So I found a recipe in one of the lovely Paula Deen recipe books I had and made them. They are so delicious!!
On one final note, I have to say I am incredibly grateful for my lovely husband of over 10 years. I have been begging him from day one to make me a large work table for my crafting. Nagging him is actually more like it. Well it took 10 years but he finally made my table and I am so giddy I can't stop looking at it. I haven't taken a picture yet but I will. I look forward to creating some great things on this table. He thinks I'm nuts because I just walk by it and giggle because I am so happy. So Jim, you are truly the best. You're my lobster and I adore you.
Have a great week!!!