Christmas Magic

Is there anything better than the joy of kids at Christmas?  Although Owen is still too young to really “get” it, we had a lot of fun this year with his presents and his wonder at the tree.

But wow, taking photos of a very active one year old is HARD!  No one warned me that taking photos at this age would make me want to tear my hair out! 

Here’s little O attempting to de-decorate the tree:
xmas owen1
And after succeeding:
Ornament eating
Discovering presents:
Finding a box
Christmas morning gift inspection… penguin pillow pet!
Present inspection
”Is this big one for ME!?”
Tag Theif

And of course the holiday would not be complete without the standard “child screaming on Santa’s lap” photo… maybe we’ll have better luck next year but honestly I think I got the Bad Mama award for thinking this situation was *hilarious*. 

First Santa

Return of the Cupcake

We finally got our first good snow here in Massachusetts and it made me get the funny, warm, I-need-to-bake-something feeling! So I whipped up a batch of Gingerbread Cupcakes with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting. Mmmmm!

I have been on a quest for the perfect gingerbread recipe. I am partial to the old fashioned moist, dark gingerbread from the Dancing Deer company, who claims their recipe is from the owner's great grandma from Maine. I just can't seem to find any conventional recipe that gets it dark and spicy enough! The recipe I used for these cupcakes was no exception. They were good but not what I am looking for so I will go back to my old standard.

The frosting was however. I simply made a batch of cream cheese frosting and used lemon juice in place of vanilla extract... plus a heck of a lot of lemon zest. I could eat it by the spoonful! I have some left over and I am thinking of frosting sugar cookies with it... YUM!

They like me, they really like me!

I am tickled PINK to be able to announce that I was chosen to be one of Pink Paislee's 2011 guest artists!! It is a huge honor. I am so glad no one but my husband and toddler saw the unflattering Dance of Joy that I did after I got the email!

I have a sneaking suspicion that 2011 is going to be an awesome year!

Basic Grey Marjolaine

My reveal at ACOT this month is a breath of fresh nature in the middle of winter... because I am featuring the grass greens and sky blues of Basic Grey's Marjolaine!

As much as I love working with holiday themed products it was refreshing to find a home for all my outdoor photos that have been piling up. Marjolaine was totally perfect for these grass-heavy pictures. Check out what I did in my article here.

Busy Bee

December has been nuts!

I have already told my husband that we are not allowed to have another child in November OR December because Owen's birthday being smack in the middle of Thanksgiving and Christmas *killed* me this year. But his first birthday party was a success! We had a lot of fun.

Of course, it wouldn't be ME if I didn't do a DIY party. I forgot to take photos of some of the details but here are the big ones. My favorite is his hat!!

The invitation:
We did a baked potato bar for food:
His monster onesie:

The hat:

The birthday banner:

The cupcakes:

The monster cake!
And of course the monster himself:

Crazy for Cosmo!

The new Circa 1934 line from Cosmo Cricut was a joy to create with! I want to order a whole new set of these papers because they just seem to work for so many photos. Check out my latest article featuring these goodies at A Cherry On Top!

Challenges galore

Well, I have been a busy bee lately! Mr. Owen got his very first haircut this past weekend in anticipation of his first birthday on Friday, when he'll be getting some photos taken.

You can see how well it went:

But that's ok... an animal cracker later and he was smiling again. Mama, however, is still a little sad at the loss of all those gorgeous baby curls!

Meanwhile, there is a new set of monthly challenges up at ACOT and a new prompt at Scrap That Baby! Go check them out for inspiration and prizes!