Wednesday, May 23, 2012

2 Years

Ever since we had Niah most of my post are about her but today I am going to write about us. Yesterday, marked 2 years of marriage. Over the weekend we took a trip to Branson and stayed in a lovely log cabin and continue to celebrate until the day.

I realize 2 years is not that long of a time and I am not writing this post because we have been together a long time, I am writing it because I believe in Marriage. When I wrote/compiled our marriage ceremony the one thing I wanted was people to realize that when a covenant was made in the bible it was for life and that was what we were doing, making a covenant for life. We did not exchange blood as they did in the bible but symbolic of that is the ring, we walked down the aisle (which use to be walking between animal bone), we said our vows, we had witnesses, changed names, and so on. Read up on blood covenants, I found it quite interesting. It was so important to me because I felt in our society; marriage, the covenant, the day was looked at as just not that special, something that can be broken fairly easy, sign a few pieces a paper, go to court, and your done. A covenant made during the bible a person would rather had died than to break a covenant, much more serious. Matthew and I view our covenant as that serious.

In the two years we have been married we have done, gone through alot of big changes. We started out in a brand new place, with new jobs, with no home, in fact they broke ground on our house while we were on our honeymoon. The first 5 months were spent building a home and then 3 months into our marriage we found out we were expecting, Niah. All of that to say we may have our disagreements, even ugly moments but they never last more than a couple minutes and at the end of the day we are each others best friend.

I write this today because we believe in marriage. Something you see everywhere is the affects of divorce, we believe divorce is murder of a relationship and the effects go far past the husband and wife to children. Working at a church and in the past at a school, you see what happens when a marriage covenant is broken not through adults but through precious children. The emotional, physical, and mental toll carries into their adulthood. Our society makes marriage such a casual thing where you spend tons of money for the wedding but that life is too short to stay married. Don't get me wrong marriage takes work and compromise but all great things take work and I believe marriage is wonderful (why do people keep getting married they like it). When we celebrated our anniversary, our marriage, we remembered our covenant. My prayer is that our society would look at marriage as a covenant before God and not just a casual ceremony that is not a life long commitment for the sake of their lives and their childrens.

Yes I did put on my wedding dress

I did watch tv in and put Niah to bed in it
We did have cupcakes because every good celebration as cake

Friday, May 18, 2012

Our Little one knows what she wants

Niah is our little one that knows what she wants, and we wouldn't change that for a second. She points and talks and tells you what she wants. She makes sure to let us know, what she wants or does not want.

Some things she knows she wants:
is any food daddy is eating because she knows it is sweet and tasty.
is when we are at a restaurant and a table gets a tasty sandwich before we get our food.
is to be pulled or pushed in any object, right now is her car.
is mommy anytime she first wakes up.
is water to put her hands in, to wash them.

Niah is so close to walking, we are pretty sure she is capable of walking just not ready to take more than 1 or 2 steps. She stands up by herself in the middle of the floor not using anything. She will stand not holding on to anything and play with toys, sing, dance. Favorite songs right now are, Old McDonald (she sings eieio) and row row row your boat (She sings row row row and marrly marrly marrly)

She Now says in addition to all of her other words

This is me and my girl on Mother's Day
This is a picture of the girls playing at their Great Grandma's house I had to improvise because she was lacking in the toy department

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Tutu Party - Decor

I did some fairly easy diy decorating most of it just required time.

I did the High chair skirt and table skirt the same. It is similar to a no sew tutu which I also did.

Tulle - colors of choice

1. I cut strips of tulle double the length I wanted it.

2. You fold the strips in half.

3. put the tulle around the ribbon and pull the ends through.

4. Continue until finished.

I tied the ribbon around the high chair and table. I also hot glued it in a few spots to ensure that it did not move.

Tutu Wands

sticks - I used cake pop sticks

Cut tulle, I cut mine about 6 inches long. I used a total of 16-20 pieces. Put 4 pieces of tulle together you can do all the same color different colors. and tie a thin ribbon in the middle. Continue this 4 times if you use 16 or 5 if you use 20. Then tie all of the pieces of tulle together. Once tied together spread tulle pieces apart. I hot glued the balls to a stick and decorated the stick with ribbon.

I found the next 2 diy at Martha Stewart

Hanging Pom-Poms
1. Stack eight (I did 12, 8 was not thick enough) 20-by-30-inch sheets of tissue. Make 1 1/2-inchwide accordion folds, creasing with each fold.

2. Fold an 18-inch (I did not find it extremely important to be right at 18 inches for this) piece of floral wire in half, and Put on center of folded tissue; twist. With scissors, trim ends of tissue into rounded or pointy shapes.

3. Separate layers, pulling away from center one at a time.

4. Attach ribbon to wire for haning

5. I just used a sewing pin to hang in the ceiling, did not leave a hole

Napkin Rings
With just a few changes, these follow the same steps as the hanging pom-poms.

1. Stack four sheets (I did 6) of tissue. Cut a 10-by-5-inch rectangle, going through all layers. Make 3/8-inch-wide accordion folds.

2. Fold an 18-inch piece of floral wire in half, slip over center of tissue, and twist to secure. Trim ends of tissue.

3. Separate layers, pulling away from center one at a time.

4. Bend wire into a loop to fit around napkin, and twist end around loop to secure. I cut the left over wire because I did not use them as napkin holders just placed them on the plate.

Picture holders for Tables - I didn't want to spend anymore money but wanted to find a way to display her pictures in her tutu dress on the table

I took Medium binder clips. I clipped the picture at the bottom of the picture. Then took the metal clip on the side facing the picture off. sat in on the table.

Linking Up With

Friday, May 11, 2012

Tutu Party - Ruffled Cake

For Niah's Birthday, I made 2 cakes. 1 a smash cake for Niah and the second one was a cake for the guest. Both cakes were a sour cream white cake but the big cake had a raspberry filling in the cake. Niah's cake was a 6 inch cake and the other cake was a 3 layer 9 inch cake. I used the ruffled technique that can be found in the Victoria Magazine or Better Homes and Garden. When I first saw it, I thought there was no way I could make those cakes being I have very little experience with icing cakes. I did it a little in high school but since then have not touched an icing bag. I did a trial run on my mom's cake whose birthday was 4 days before Niah and loved the results so I did Niah's cake following the same techinque.
I will start with the cake recipe, this is an excellent recipe that is very moist.
Cake Recipe
1 box white cake mix (I used Duncan Hines)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated white sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups water
2 Tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
4 large egg whites

In a large bowl, whisk together cake mix, flour, sugar and salt. Add remaining ingredients and beat with hand mixer for 2 minutes, or until well blended
Preheat oven to 325 bake about 30 mins.

I made this recipe twice, the first time for 2 layers of the 3 layer cake and the second time I used the batter for the 6 inch cake and the last layer.

For the icing after several different icing recipes I went with a swiss meringue buttercream
Icing recipe:
5 large egg whites (30g each–total 150g)

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons superfine granulated sugar

1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened, cut into cubes

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Pinch of salt


Wipe the bowl of an electric mixer with paper towel and vinegar, to remove any trace of grease. Add egg whites and sugar, and simmer over a pot of water (not boiling), whisking constantly, until temperature reaches 140 degrees F, or if you don’t have a candy thermometer, until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.

With whisk attachment of mixer, begin to whip until the mixture is thick, glossy, and cool. Switch over to paddle attachment and, while mixing on medium speed continously, add softened butter in chunks until incorporated, and mix until it has reached a silky smooth texture (if curdles, keep mixing and it will come back to smooth). Add vanilla and salt, mix well. You can also add a wide variety of flavourings, extracts, and more.

Keep in airtight container in refrigerator for up to one week, leaving out at room temperature when needed, rewhipping in mixer for 5 minutes.

I trippled this recipe to have enough for all of the cakes. I added purple icing food color to make it the purpe.

Raspberry Filling:
1 1/2 cups frozen raspberrys
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar

In a small sauce pan, combined all of the ingredients and slowly bring to a boil over medium-high heat (keep stirring until thickened for best results). I actually used a little more sugar because the first go around was to tart so just an overflowing 1/4 cup. Let cool completely before using.

What you need to Decorate:
12 or 14 icing bag (I used 14)
Petal tip- (the bigger the petal tip the sloppier it was for me, I used Wilton 103)
Cake stand helpful but not required
Metal Icing spatula is helpful but not required

1.Assemble the cakes. If you are as new at this as me I will explain how I assemble the 3 layers. 1st you need completely flat layers so cut your cakes to make them flat on both sides (I just used a schraded knife, they have tool though). Then Ice the top of your first layer, then put raspberry filling, then put your second layer and ice the top raspberry filling and then place your last layer on top. I always ice the top of the cake last.

2.The next step is to ice the cake starting with the sides. Then do the top. To get a smooth top clean your utensil and go over the top to smooth it out.

3. Next is to the decorating. I found the best way to ice is for the cake to be on a stand. The first thing I did is make lines in my cake ro keep my ruffling straight. I had a tall kabob and measured about an inch an half and indented the icing with the kabob all the way around. To start you are actually going to hold the icing bag straight up and down. with the wide part towards the cake and the smaller part towards you. You will just go back and forth from bottom to top of cake, line to line (the lines you made to help things stay straight). It is better if you do not break from icing until you finish the row. After you finish the row you start the next row starting at the bottom.

4. Then you do around the edge of the top with the same techinque of back and for but going around the circle. I was going to write on the cake but did not master the writing so that will be next years cake.

1 thing that did happen to me is I had an air bubble in my icing bag and messed up a whole row so make sure you watch for air bubbles in the bag by squeezing the icing down as you use it.

For only doing this 1 other time, I was quite please how it turned out. I hope that you can try it and see it does not take an expert to do it.

Linking up with:

Monday, May 7, 2012

Invitations to the big 1 year old Party

We just had Niah's 1st Birthday!! It was a tutu themed birthday and everything turned out just wonderful. Over the next couple of weeks I will blog about the party and all of the diy projects that I did for the party. Total cost of party $60, give or take some.

Today I am going to talk about the invitations. To match the party we had invitations in the shape of a dress with a tutu skirt glued on. See Below.

What you will need for these invites:



small bead ribbon


Hot glue gun

1. I had the invitation wording printed on one side, a picture of Niah on the other. I printed 2 invites on 1 piece of regular sized card stock.

2. I cut the 2 copies of the invite down the middle of the page

3. I took one invite as a sample and drew a dress outline on it and cut it out. Then I took the outline and put it on top of each invite and traced the dress on the invite. I cut out all of the dress outlines on the invitations.

4. I glued the small bead ribbon around the neck line with a hot glue gun.

5. For the tulle I cut out 2 strips of tulle a little longer than the invitation. I put hot glue on the bottom portion of the invite and scrunched the tulle up as I pushed it down on the glue. Then I would do the other side with the tulle.

To mail I got a little bit bigger envelope and I was worried how they would look after the endured the mail, but they turned out great.

Linking up with

Making Keeping It Simple
DIY projects and crafts Between Naps on the Porch
Pinworthy Projects @ Just us Four

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Ranch Dip Baked Chicken

This is an absolute favorite at our house we have it probably every month, if not 2 a month. My sister got it as a recipe when she got married from someone and we both love it.


4 boneless chicken breast

1/2 cup Butter

3/4 cup Grated Parmesan

1 Ranch Dip Packet

3/4 cup crushed Corn Flakes

Melt the butter in 1 bowl. In a separate bowl mix the parmesan Ranch Dip Packet and crushed corn flakes together. Dip chicken breast in butter then in cornflake mixture put in greased 9 x 13 pan. Continue till all of the chicken breast are covered in the cornflake mixture. I pour the remaining cornflake mixture on top of the chicken breast. Then bake on 350 for 40-45 minutes until chicken is done.

Linking up with

Full Plate Thursday

HookingupwithHoH It's a Keeper What's cooking, love? .