Saturday, December 29, 2007

Oh Mellie, I think I feel a fit of the vapors coming on.....

Only women of a certain era will fully appreciate this....true story.

A Michigan woman and her family were vacationing in a small
new England town where Paul Newman and his family often visited.
One Sunday morning, the woman got up early to take a long walk.
After a brisk five-mile hike, she decided to treat herself to a
double-dip chocolate ice cream cone. She hopped in the car,
drove to the center of the village and went straight to the
combination bakery/ice cream parlor.

There was only one other patron in the store. Paul
Newman, sitting at the counter having a doughnut and coffee.
The woman's heart skipped a beat as her eyes made contact
with those famous baby-blue eyes. With a slow smile, the
actor nodded graciously and the star struck woman smiled
demurely.

Pull yourself together! She chides herself. You're a happily
married woman with three grown children, you're fifty years
old, not a teenager! The clerk filled her order and she took
the double-dip chocolate ice cream cone in one hand and
her change in the other. Then she went out the door,
avoiding even a glance in Paul Newman's direction.

When she reached her car, she realized that she had a handful of
change but her other hand was empty. Where's my ice cream cone?
Oh for heavens sake did I leave it in the store?

Back into the shop she went, expecting to see the cone still in the
clerk's hand or in a holder on the counter or something. No ice
cream cone was in sight.

With that, she happened to look over at Paul Newman. His face
broke into his familiar warm friendly grin and he said to the woman,
"You put it in your purse."
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Friday, December 28, 2007

The Gingerbread Village...


CLICK ON INDIVIDUAL PICTURES TO ENLARGE










We used both the Williams Sonoma Train pan and their Vintage Cars pan for this. It was a total experiment this year, I baked the train using a spice cake mix, and then I baked the cars using a vanilla cake mix. We all agreed that the spice cake gave the train a richer, brown color that worked better with the candies than the vanilla cars.

It was a great experience, we all enjoyed it, but ESPECIALLY Tonia. She had an absolute blast doing this, and as you can see from the expression on her face, she loved how it turned out.

This will definitely be an annual event for us, it will be fun to see what we come up with next year.

A few handy dandy tips if any of you decide to try it...

I had the gingerbread structures prebaked, that way all the family had to do was decorate, which of course, was the fun part. I went to Mr. Bulky in the mall and bought the candy. You can just buy what you need there, instead of having to buy entire bags of candy, and they had a great selection. Then I went to Walgreens and bought the little 39 cent ice cream sundae cups (which I had some of anyway, I love those little plastic cups, they are great for a lot of things) to put the candies in, no mess that way...Also, the prebaked train got stale, so it was really firm and easy to work with. I baked the vintage cars the morning we decorated it, and they were soft and much harder to work with. For the frosting, I bought cans of Wilton icing at Wally World, red, white, green and yellow, and it was really easy to attach the candies using this icing. For the basic structure, I used super glue, that was much easier than trying to using frosting.

Hubby painted the locomotive black, and the caboose red, that was a nice touch. I think in the future, we might also paint some of the cars. If you try and put icing on the entire car, it just looks globby, the paint works much better.

Obviously, we aren't eating this!!!


I think that if you attempted to do this whole project in one evening, it might get overwhelming, but this worked out really well. It's still time consuming, but oh so much fun!!! Christmas carols, s'mores, and later in the evening a little vino, and we had a rockin' good time....

~ jan
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Something new for you to try...

Okay, Christmas is over, we're all bloated from binging on cookies, we're avoiding the scale, but help is on the way -

There is a new program online called FigWee. It's in beta version now, which means if you register NOW you won't EVER have to pay a fee for it... I checked it out this morning, it's pretty slick, you can do an online food diary, a results log, it has a forum area, and it not only gives you calories of food, but shows the actual food and the portion size, lots of goodies to help keep you motivated... So go to their site, click on the quick tour, it will walk you thru each step of the site and show you how it works. It's easy, very user friendly....

So, if you're pumped to once again lose those extra pounds, this could be a real help. And if you aren't going to worry about the weight til January 2, bookmark the site!

I would go ahead and register now, cause once it's out of beta it costs $$.

Check it out HERE
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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Holy Batman and Robin, WHAT HAPPENED???



One of the gossip sites posted this picture of Cher and her daughter, Chastity. Yep, she's that cute little blonde girl who used to sit in Daddy's arms on the Sonny & Cher show. Wow, she's all grown up now... And if I don't get a handle on my food intake, I'm gonna look like an older version of her. As my friend, Peg told me last week, "Girlfriend, Weight Watchers has gone all to shit!"

Sad 4Time to reign it in, but it was fun while it lasted....

I've had computer problems today, that's why no gingerbread house pictures. I'm up and running again, I'll post them in the morning. They're worth the wait...

~ jan
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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tomorrow....

The gingerbread village is finished, dusted with snow and ready to photograph tomorrow in the natural light. Check back, we all think it's a goodie for a first attempt.

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday, there hasn't been time to blog, thank goodness for easy picture uploading...

The dogs are SO tired, omg, they are just pooped. Maggie was in her little hidey-hole between the sofa cushions, where she snoozes every day, and Tonia snapped her picture. Munchie and Oreo were sharing a bed, poor little fur kids, they are all Christmassed out....

I'll post those pictures for you tomorrow. Hope you enjoy them.

~ jan
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Gingerbread village coming soon, check back...



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