A Delicious Addiction!

I am having way too much fun experimenting with different flavours of Macarons, and I’m glad I can bake these tasty treats up myself because it would be hard to avoid getting these from somewhere to satisfy my cravings.

I’ve made a few more flavours since I last posted about my Macarons.

First we have Cinnamon Heart Macarons for Valentine’s Day.Cinnamon Heart Macs 3 (web) Cinnamon Heart Macs 5 (web)Salted Caramel Macarons with a Cream Cheese Swiss Meringue Buttercream.

Salted Caramel w-Cream Cheese SMB Macs 1 (web) Salted Caramel w-Cream Cheese SMB Macs 2 (web)

Bailey’s Chocolate Ganache Macarons for St. Patrick’s Day.

Bailey's Macs 1 (web) Bailey's Macs 2 (web)

And a mixed batch of Strawberry Macarons and Lemon Meringue Macarons.

Lemon and Strawberry Macs 1 (web) Lemon and Strawberry Macs 4 (web)Yum!!  A serious addiction to these pretty cookies going on here!

And you can check out the rest of the pictures in my Flickr set!

 

Lunch Treat

I know it’s Sunday, but on Friday night I was working on this Skylanders Giants cake so I never ended up getting onto the computer.

Last week I took the kiddos to the Craft store and then afterwards we headed to Red Robin’s for some lunch.  I forgot that it was Spring Break so it got busier than I thought it would be, but we definitely enjoyed it.  And the kiddos loved the ice cream treat after their lunch.

Red Robins Lunch 9 (web) Red Robins Lunch 10 (web)

Setting a Little Goal

Well since I seem to constantly forget to post something on here, I thought I’d make a goal for myself to blog a little something at least once a week.  This will also be a photography goal, to pick up my camera and make sure to shoot something every week.  I will post every Friday, be it a photo(s) from the week, or something that I haven’t shared before.

I am also setting a goal for April, to pick up my camera every day for the whole month, so hopefully at the end of each week in April I will have a series of photos to share.

So this week I’ll start by sharing a few photos from today’s outing.  At the beginning of last week we (and I’m talking about the whole house here) were hit by a nasty stomach flu.  From the first night of just one of us being sick to the next day where we were all hit by it.  I don’t remember ever being so sick before, and I hated seeing the little ones so ill.  This week we laid low, did a lot of nothing just because I wanted to make sure the kids got a lot of rest.  Knowing that they are both back to being themselves, we went to the Cheese Farm near by to pick up some cheese and then we hit the grocery store to stock up on fresh groceries, the fridge gets bare when you spend over a week of staying inside and not eating anything much.

While visiting the cheese farm we spent a little bit of time checking out the cows.

Cheese Farm 12 (web) Cheese Farm 16 (web) Cheese Farm 17 (web)So until next week ….

Bringing Along my Camera!

I take a lot of pictures of the kiddos, but most of the time they are around the house or going outside close to home.  My goal is to bring that big clunky camera with me to as many places as possible and capture a lot of the things I do with my little kiddos.  I usually take my out and about photos with my phone, just a quick snap and it’s done.  My biggest thing about bringing my big camera with me is just getting over the fear of taking it out and shooting in front of all sorts of people.

Last year I went on a day trip with the MWAC camera club, and spending a whole day just shooting photos out in public helped me a lot in getting over the fear of having people watch me do my thing.  In the last few weeks I have made it a point to bring my camera wherever we go, and to plan little trips where I know I will try to capture some pics.  Since I have two days in the week off work that are weekdays it works out nicely; the places we go usually aren’t super busy so it makes it easier to let the kids do their thing while I try to capture some fun moments.

I’m just going to share a few pics from some of the places we have gone.

A little snack at Starbucks, and a tea for me.  I have wanted to do this photo of Kazia in front of this wall for a long time, and I love that she’s in her own little world while having her banana loaf.

Starbucks Fun 1A library trip, it was a bit crazy letting the little guy have free reign to run around, but they both had a lot of fun and we came out with a whole lot of books to read.

Library Fun 7 (web)And just two more from our visit to a Frozen Yogurt place.  It was a freezing cold day, but for a few bucks the kids had a really fun hour of running around (there was no one else there haha) and they enjoyed their frozen yogurt creations.  It was getting close to nap time for Asher, so he decided to have a little lay down for a second …. and then big sis decided she wanted to as well.

Frozen Yogurt (web) Frozen Yogurt (1) (web)I have a lot more photos to share once I go through them all, and a few more ideas of where to go with the little ones … maybe some new places to explore as well.

I am so glad I got over my fear and just started taking these photos, even with all the people looking and wondering what I might be doing.

Anna

Macarons!

Oh my, I haven’t posted for almost a month!  I have a couple more flavours of Macarons to post today.

On New Year’s I decided to make some Champagne flavoured macarons, and they were so good, even though I thought they would flop because my Champagne did not want to incorporate into my Swiss meringue buttercream.  But to my surprise, the next day they were absolutely perfect, they didn’t go soft at all like I thought they would.  I also rolled them in some white sugar to give them some “sparkle”.

Champagne Macs 1 (web) Champagne Macs 2 (web) Champagne Macs 5 (web) Champagne Macs 7 (web)I also happened across a blog post over at Cake on the Brain about making macarons with pasteurized egg whites, so I knew I had to give them another try, this time with her recipe because I knew my recipe only worked beautifully with the traditional method of cracking, and aging my eggs and so on.

I decided to try a Strawberries and Cream macaron, with flavoured shells too.  I followed the new recipe and measured all my ingredients, then I also cooked down some strawberries with a little bit of sugar, pressed them through a sieve to create a syrup and incorporated that syrup into my egg whites while they were still “wet” and hadn’t formed a meringue yet.  Once the meringue started to form, I added a bit of pink gel food colouring because the syrup didn’t give enough of a colour that I wanted to create.  I was so excited to see that my meringue was turning out perfectly, and after folding in my almond flour and icing sugar mixture I knew this batch would work out, I could feel that the batter was just right.

I made a Vanilla Swiss meringue buttercream to fill the cookies, and they were so yummy!!

Strawberries and Cream Macs 1 (web) Strawberries and Cream Macs 2 (web) Strawberries and Cream Macs 3 (web) Strawberries and Cream Macs 4 (web) Strawberries and Cream Macs 5 (web)Now I can create Macarons whenever I want, no more waiting on my egg whites to age!  And knowing that I can flavour my shells easily opens up a lot more flavour combinations to play with.  Very exciting stuff ….

Anna

Lifestyle Project: Weeks 49-52

The final 4 weeks of 2013.  I finished a whole year project, that feels good!  To see all 52 weeks worth of photos hop over to my set on Flickr!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Years!

Here are my final four images.

Week 49:  Tradition

Picking out their yearly ornaments.

8 - Traditions diptychWeek 50:  Reflect/Reflection

Hard at work filling Champagne flavoured French Macarons.  These little cookies are so addicting!

Making Macs (web)Week 51:  Wild Card

My little glamour girl 🙂

Frozen Poser (web)Week 52:  Emotive

Tired little guy after an afternoon/evening of opening Christmas presents and playing with family.

12 - Aftermath (web)

Now to find another photography project to do this year.

Anna

Wall Makeover

We have a small space of wall in the kitchen that I’ve been wanting to put something nice onto and take down the whiteboard and mess of papers cluttering it.  I finally got around to it when I saw a piece of wood sitting in the garage.  I had seen this tutorial a little while back and knew exactly what I would do with that piece of wood.  I had it cut into three equal 11″ x 12″ pieces and started sanding them down.  I found a stain to match the cupboards in the kitchen as closely as I could and did three coats of stain to get the look I was going for.  I printed my three 8×10 photos, glued on my clips and attached sawtooth hangers to the back for hanging.

Here is the wall before …

Kitchen Wall Makeover 1 (web)And after my little project …

Kitchen Wall Makeover 2 (web) Kitchen Wall Makeover 3 (web) Kitchen Wall Makeover 4 (web)Much happier with my little wall now.

Anna

Holiday Flavours!

Recently I’ve tried out three different holiday flavoured Macarons, I couldn’t tell you which I liked the best because they were all extremely delicious!

The first was an Eggnog Macaron ….

Eggnog Macs 1 (web) Eggnog Macs 5 (web)Then I tried Gingerbread Macs.  These had a nice flavour kick to them with the fresh ginger in the buttercream.

Gingerbread Macs 1 (web) Gingerbread Macs 5 (web)And Cranberry Orange Macs.  I ended up adding some Orange Liqueur into the buttercream because with just the orange zest there wasn’t enough of an orange flavour, and it was a very good choice because it gave it that extra little something.

Cranberry Orange Macs 1 (web) Cranberry Orange Macs 3 (web)There’s more photos of them on Flickr!

Maybe for New Year’s I’ll have to give some Champagne flavoured Macs a try.

Anna

Lifestyle Project: Weeks 41-48

I know, I haven’t posted in a while.  I’m either busy baking, sewing or just plain forget to post anything.

Since I’m way behind in posting my updates for my Lifestyle Project I am going to post 8 weeks instead of 4 worth of photos.

Week 41:  Self Portrait

I set up the camera and Kazia took the photo by clicking like crazy.

Me 2013 (web)Week 42:  Self Portrait (Yes, Again)

An updated picture to one taken with us three when Asher was just a week or so old.

Three of us (web)Week 43:  Give

Kazia was on antibiotics for a couple weeks and I had to give her this “yucky” medicine, not the easiest of tasks that was.

Week 43 - Give (web)Week 44:  Work/Play

A bit of work and play for me, making cakes as a hobby baker.

Bubble Guppies Cake 9 (web)Week 45:  Familiar

A familiar site around here, frozen blueberries, a favourite.  Kazia loved them when she was this age too.

45 - Familiar (web)Week 46:  Sudden

Asher has suddenly found a love for colouring, but on everything except paper.

46 - SuddenWeek 47:  Mystery

Our first snowfall of 2013, Asher was trying to figure out what the person shovelling the snow off their driveway was doing.

First Snow 2013 5 (web)Week 48:  Mealtime

Helping prep for dinner by ricing potatoes for homemade gnocchi.

48 - Mealtime (web)And you can view these and my other photos on my Flickr page as well.

Anna