Sunday, October 30, 2011

Halloween and Pie!

     Halloween isn't till Monday.  However, I'm assuming most Halloween plans are being made for Friday the 28th and Saturday the 29th, right? It just doesn't make sense that anyone would be partying it up on a Monday night. 

     So anyways, my Halloween plans were for Friday and Saturday, so my Halloween is pretty much over now.  On Friday, I went over to a friend's house and stayed over.  We played dart tag, board games, card games, drank tea, watched movies, looked at her old high school yearbooks, ate pie, drank cider and went to sleep.  It was so fun acting like 10 year olds with her.  Then, Saturday morning, we slept in too late, got ready in a rush and then went to a family Halloween bash on her college campus.  That was pretty great.  There were tons of little kids there, which makes sense because it was a "family" party, so there were plenty of fun and silly games.  Kristin and Austin both played the competition of who could eat a doughnut hanging by a string the fastest.  That was pretty amusing! We also got popcorn hands, candy and a few other things. 

     Here was my Halloween costume: (stitches, bruises on my neck from being strangled, sunken in dead eyes, broken foot = Dead Ballerina.  I know it was pretty lame, but I didn't get a costume this year and then I realized I had to wear one to the parties so I just threw something together with my old ballet stuff and a little makeup.)


      Then, I went home and went to a party hosted by my parents' close friends.  Of course all of the adult-adults were drinking and being inappropriate, but there were activities for everyone.  They had a massive amount of yummy food, and both sugar and paper mache skulls to paint.  The paint provided was AMAZING.  There was every color you could think of, plus glitters and metallics and everything! I painted one paper skull and one small sugar skull.  Here's the pictures:






     So, the pie!  You want the recipe, right?  Well, this time I finally followed a recipe and didn't replace any ingredients with stuff I wasn't supposed to use!  I was so proud of myself.  However, I did add in stuff.  That's always okay, right?




Blueberry Cream Cheese Pie

Adapted from: here

Ingredients:

- 12 ounces (1 package and a half, usually) softened cream cheese
- 1 cup white sugar (split into two 1/2 cups for different uses)
- 1 dash vanilla extract
- 1 dash lemon extract
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1 (12 ounce) can blueberry pie filling
- 1 prepared graham cracker crust
- 2 cups fresh blueberries (*optional)

Directions:

-In large bowl, combine cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar, lemon and vanilla extracts.  Mix well.

-In a medium bowl, whip heavy cream and 1/2 cup sugar until stiff peaks form.

-Fold 1/2 whipped cream into cream cheese mixture.

-Spread cream cheese and whipped cream mixture into crust.

-Chill in refrigerator for 2 hours.

-Dot pie with blueberry pie filling and spread around with spatula.

-Top with remaining whipped cream and then scatter blueberries on top.

-Refrigerate for at least 2 more hours.

Notes:

The way that I prepared my store bought graham cracker crust was I whisked one egg white, brushed it on the crust and baked the graham cracker crust at 375 Fahrenheit for ten minutes while I was making the mixtures.  You could always leave the store bought crust as it is without baking, but the baking really brings out the rich taste of the graham crackers.  You could also make your own graham cracker crust from scratch if you're going all out.

The refrigerating after spreading the filling into the pie is a step I added in.  The original recipe said to dot with the blueberry pie filling right after you put the cream cheese filling in, but I wouldn't do that.  I refrigerated mine because if you put the blueberry filling on right away, the cream cheese mixture will still be too soft and will spread around with the blueberry filling and make a mess. 

Review:

I LOVED this recipe.  It was so simple, easy, cheap and delicious!  You could easily replace the blueberry pie filling and fresh berries with any other type of pie filling!  I would LOVE to try blackberry, because can you imagine the tartness of the blackberries with that creamy, rich filling?  Yum.  The graham cracker crust just added the nicest touch to it, and the fresh blueberries on top gave each bite a burst of fresh flavor.  I am definitely going to make this again, but probably with blackberries and take it to my family's Thanksgiving dinner!


     Alright, well after that long post I think I'll go rinse out my cup of tea, make a new cup and watch some TV.  After all of the weekend excitement I think I deserve a lazy Sunday.

     Later!


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

News soon!

I will hopefully be posting this weekend about a pie recipe I'm trying this Friday and also about my Halloween costume, of course! Stay tuned.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Cookie recipe

Hello!

I am actually blogging from my phone tonight. I'm extremely exhausted and cuddled up in my bed already. Yes, in bed at 8:30 on a Saturday night. Crazy, I know!!! Well, this evening I made cookies for a friend that might be coming over tomorrow. I haven't seen this girl since JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL. It's been such a long time and I'm so excited to see her again! So, I decided to make her sugar cookies. The recipe I had in mind called for butter. I didn't have butter. So I was going to use a slightly less amount of margarine instead. Then I got out the margarine and realized I only had like a tablespoon of it left! So then I resorted to vegetable oil. I have this problem where if a baking recipe calls for something I don't have, I use something else. I never follow an actual recipe. And with this cookie recipe I ended up creating the whole thing myself. Want the recipe? Okay, here:

Ingredients:
2.5 cups flour
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups sugar
I tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
Dash of salt
1 egg
Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Preheat oven to 350 fahrenheit.
Combine flower, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
Cream sugar and oil in a bowl. Add in egg and vanilla extract. Gradually add in flour.
Knead all of the dough and then roll it out to about three centimeters thick. Use cookie cutters, cut out cookie shapes, place on sheet, gather dough scraps, and roll out and repeat.
After cookies are all on the sheet, place sheet in the fridge for 10 minutes.
Then after cookies are chilled, bake for 10 minutes.
Let cool on pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Ice when cooled if desired.

Tada! There you go. The dough is. Little difficult but you can add more oil or flour as needed. The cookies definitely aren't chewy or soft, but they're crispy. They're not too thin, but they are crispy and light tasting. I would reccomend this recipe for Party cookies that you're going to spend hours decorating.

Baking exhausts me. I love cooking, but baking is just messy labor to me. At least I didn't screw the cookies up!

That's all tonight! I'm so sorry for lack of paragraphs and bad grammar and/or spelling, but like I said, I did this blog on my phone tonight. And I'm also really, very tired. Goodnight, whoever you might be.

Friday, October 21, 2011

New Pictures Up!

     The photos from the shoot I did for Kristin on 10/16/2011 are now all up on "MY Photography ♥" page over there ------> 
    
     So here are a few of my favorites from that shoot: (click on the photos to enlarge them and get the best clarity.)  (All photos belong to Espoir Photography [me] and you are not to use them without my consent.)









Thursday, October 20, 2011

Indecisive Me.

I'm not going to do Wishful Wednesday or Five Fact Friday anymore.  I'm just going to try to post whenever I can about whatever I want.  I keep trying to make a tradition on this blog, but with my schedule and forgetful mind, it's too hard to stick to anything.  So! Today I'm just going to let you know, I did another photoshoot for my same friend as last time and I am going to try to put the up on my photography page over there ----------> today.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Makeup Post, 10/15/2011

     This is both a "makeup" and "make-up" post.  I didn't do Five Fact Friday last week, Wishful Wednesday this week, OR Five Fact Friday this week!  I'm terrible sorry, I've just had a lot of work to do and I've been extremely busy.  So! To make up for that, I will be doing a post today, on Saturday.  I will be posting a personal bit on a makeup crisis I'm having and then a recipe.  Remember when I used to always post recipes?  I miss doing that.  So I'll do it again tonight. :)

     Alright! My makeup problem.  I really want to try Bare Minerals/Essentials matte powder foundation (again), but I'm unsure.  I also really want to try Bobbi Brown's liquid foundation.  I'm on a foundation hype lately.  I've tried the Bare Minerals foundation (not the matte, but still) before, but it was a few years ago when I only wore foundation for fun.  Now, I'd really like to even out my blotchy skin color and cover up those under-eye bags.  So, I remember that Bare Minerals was really good, but you could tell that my face had a layer of makeup.  The problem is... I might have just been applying it too heavy because I wasn't too into makeup then and I didn't really know how to use it.  I've heard many, many great things about Bobbi Brown cosmetics before... but it's almost twice the price of Bare Minerals.  If somebody is reading this and you've tried either of them, let me know what they're like, please!

     NOW! To make up for not posting on my promised days lately.  Here's a recipe I am DYING to try!

     S'mores Brownies.
     You CAN'T tell me that doesn't sound absolutely delicious.
     First of all, I'd like to say that this recipe comes from Kim from lovintheoven.com and the specific link to this specific recipe is here.  The following pictures also belong to her and were taken by her. (Obviously, since it says lovintheoven.com on them)


S'mores Brownies by Kim at lovintheoven.com

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 brownie mix box
  • 3 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8x8 pan with tin foil.
  2. First, make the crust. Mix together the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Press into the bottom of the lined pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Prepare the brownie mixture as listed on the box. Pour the batter over the baked crust and bake per directions on the box, about 35-40 minutes.
  4. Remove pan from the oven and change your oven setting to broil. Sprinkle the mini marshmallows on top of the baked brownies and pop back in the oven for a minute or two until the marshmallows lightly brown. Make sure to keep an eye on it because this process happens very quickly!
  5. Let cool completely and cut with a cold, wet knife.
     If you make those, you HAVE to let me know how they turned out and any changes you might make. I'm still not sure if I want to risk making them.  I have incredibly bad luck when it comes to baking brownies...  Man, I'm NEVER going to get married.  What good wife doesn't know how to make brownies the right way?

     So anyways! This week I will try my very hardest to do a Wishful Wednesday and Five Fact Friday post!   Thanks for reading, guys.  See you later!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Announcement

     My friend Kristin did a mini-photoshoot of me yesterday.  Some of it is a little dance-y but most of it is just portfolio and some headshots.  You can see them on my "pictures" page over there ----->
They're all located near the bottom of the page, so you have to scroll down past my family photos.
I hope you all like them! *Wishful Wednesday hopefully later tonight*

                                                                 Love,

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wishful Wednesday

     For this episode of Wishful Wednesday... (;
    
     Just kidding.  For Wishful Wednesday today, I'm going to post THREE things that I'm wishful for.

     O1. I wish for a road trip with Amy. We are planning the trip now.  Right after we graduate high school, we're going to *hopefully* take a trip across the country to New Jersey.  My main destination is NYC, which Amy also wants to visit, but her main destination is New Jersey.  So we'll travel up to New York, stopping at hotels once in each state, and then when we get to New York, we're going to stay for a week.  Then, after that week, we'll go up to New Jersey.  We'll spend around a week there too, and hopefully meet the cast of Cake Boss and get some treats from Carlo's City Hall Bake Shop!  She really wants to visit there and meet them, and so do I! I'd really like to see a NYCB performance. 

     O2. I wish I could turn my photography into a business right now.  Hopefully, as soon as I get my ideal camera, I will be doing so.  I don't think it'd be good to do right now though, seeing as though I don't have my ideal camera, and I don't know if I'd have the time.  As soon as I get that camera, though... you'd better watch out, cause my business is going to take over the world. ;D

     O3. I wish that I could get gum contouring.  Right now.  I AM going to get it eventually, but I REALLY wish I had the money to do it right now.  It's TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS per TOOTH. Am I crazy for thinking that's crazy? Yeeshk.  I don't think I'll be able to get it until I'm at least out of college, but you never know.  Maybe if I turn my photography into a business early enough, I'll have enough extra money to save up! 

     That is ALL for Wishful Wednesday this week! Oh! Just kidding! I wish that I could get my new phone NOW! Stupid people who don't know how to send checks on time!!!

     See you Friday!


Sunday, October 2, 2011

SURPRISE!

My surprise for you has arrived!  Look on the side of this blog.  Click on the page "MY Photography ♥" There yah go.  Click on the pictures to enlarge them.  I am

So.
Very.
Proud.

of these photos.  They're all mine.  I took them myself. And they're beautiful. ♥