This blog is a result of the spark my Aunt Martha ignited in me to CREATE! She said, "you must create is a gift and it would be a shame to waste it". "Two hours a day" she said...I balked. Does creating supper count? Stacks of brightly colored folded laundry? Nope. Trust me, I would LOVE to have two hours a day to create, and some days I have the time to, but mostly I find it hard to have two hours. However, I am committed to not waste the gift and the projects you see here are the product of my unleashed passion.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Marie’s Strawberry Pie with Cornflake Crust

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We have been friends with a wonderful older couple for quite some time…she is 89 and he is 93. I go to their house once a week and help them with household chores. We visit a lot while I am there and she always prepares a lovely, yummy lunch for us. One week she made this special pie. Reece was with me that day and we came home raving about Marie’s pie. I recently asked for the recipe and she happily shared it with me, although she couldn’t find the original and had to tell me how to make it by memory and shared her memories of the pie as well…of serving it at a club meeting of some sort and the club president loved it so much that he teased the club for three months by posting a little bit of the recipe at a time in their newsletter until the entire recipe was posted. She is one of the most creative people I know and this pie seemed like a good post for “creativity unleashed”.

Here’s what you will need:

1 lb. of strawberries
9 oz. cornflakes (I made two pies from an 18 oz. box, but you could use more or less and still get good results)
1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
2 T. sugar and 1/4 c. sugar
2 pkts. unflavored gelatin
2 c. HEAVY whipping cream
2-3 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla (Marie said “a dash”)

All measurements are MOL (more or less) and can be adjusted according to what you have on hand and still get a great pie. This pie isn’t rocket science!

Start off with crushing the cornflakes. I did this by opening the bag a tiny bit at the top to let the air out and then rolling it with a rolling pin. It’s okay if there a few flakey bits left, just try to get them crushed up mostly.

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Add 2 T. sugar to the cornflakes and pour into a bowl. Melt the stick of butter and pour over the flakes/sugar and mix thoroughly. Press into a buttered pie dish. It may look like a lot of crust and that’s OKAY. The crust is what makes this pie so fabulous! Bake the crust for 12 minutes or so at 375…you want it slightly browned, but be careful not to burn it! While it is cooking…mix the gelatin packets into 1/2 c. boiling water and stir, stir, stir until the gelatin is dissolved; set aside to cool. Wash the strawberries, reserve a couple for garnish, then chop and add 1/4 cup of sugar to them (MOL depending on sweetness of the berries).  Set everything aside while the pie crusts are cooling, letting the sugar and berries blend and the gelatin cool.

Start whipping your cream. While it whips (if you have a stand mixer and can walk away), add the gelatin mixture to the strawberries. It will look like this:

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Add lemon juice and vanilla to this mixture, stir.

Once your whipped cream is stiff, like this…

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… fold the strawberry mixture into the cream. Plop the mixture into your pie crust, garnish with the reserved berries and ENJOY! The crust is CRUMBLY and that’s okay, just scoop it out anyway onto the plate. I may try to work on that aspect of it at some point, but right now I’m enjoying it the way my friend made it.

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

I get by with a little help from my friends…

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My friend’s son is getting married next month and I was invited to the bridal shower. I wanted to do something unique. Wandering around the internet, I was inspired by this post at Thankfully, I have a wonderful friend who was willing to bring her vinyl cutter to our homeschool co-op meeting on Tuesday and print out the vinyl needed for this project. Thanks SO much, Sharon!

I picked up two 18.5 x 8.5 picture frames at Walmart, cut the back insert out of one, sandwiched the vinyl between the two panes of glass and placed them in one of the frames (saving the other frame for some other project someday…I bought two frames so I would have two panes of glass). Used E6000 adhesive around the back edges of glass to hold it all together. Loved how it turned out and the bride seemed to like it too!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The duck who won a makeover…

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Okay…he didn’t REALLY win one, but he certainly needed one, the poor ugly duckling! I took the before picture after I’d already started roughing up his surface with sandpaper. Sprayed him with metallic silver and then matte black and then ruffled his feathers a bit (roughed him up some more with sandpaper).  I think he is a vast improvement, even though it is time to put him away for the summer. A friend gave us this guy with some other fireplace accessories. I think I’ll wait to tackle the gold wood holder until the fall…

I also forgot to share a couple of other projects I completed. These were both birthday gifts for my sister-in-law.

She mentioned that she “wants one” when she saw the coffee cup warmer I made someone for Christmas, so I made her one out of a felted wool sweater sleeve…in her colors :o)March 225 copy

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This next present I said “It’s kind of dorky…” while she was opening it. She mentioned to my mom one day that she wished she had a way to “mark” her dishwasher as to whether it was clean or dirty. I explained to her that this is designed so the dark side is on top when the dishes are dirty and the light side is up when it is clean.

It’s made from recycled felted wool from sweaters and an fridge magnet I picked up at the thrift store for “whatever”!

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Saturday, April 10, 2010

Sunrise the day before Easter 2010

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Baby Tag Blanket

Made this little tag blanket for a friend’s new baby. I bought the pattern on clearance at Walmart for 25 cents (with a few other projects included on the booklet), but there are several free tutorials online for them as well…like this one.

I used regular cotton print fabric for the front and flannel for the back.

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Jayne Cobb Hat from Firefly

I realize the colors are brighter than Jayne’s actual hat, but it was the best I could do with what was available to me. This hat was a gift for my daughter’s birthday…she’s a huge Serenity/Firefly fan!

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Pattern is from Crafster.

Here’s my son singing “The Hero of Canton (The Man They Call Jayne!)” to his sister.

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