Friday, October 29, 2010

Pumpkin Handiwork

My hubby and I finally got to our pumpkin carving tonight. Down here in the desert you can't carve your pumpkins too early or they get pretty gross and moldy...and believe me, we have learned our lesson! It's just too hot down here, even in October. (Today it was 92 degrees!)

Here is what we carved:

My hubby carved the witch and I did the ghost. I think they turned out pretty good and we had such a great time carving them. While we were carving, Caleb was painting since he's still too little to use a knife and afterwards we took the party outside and laid on a blanket in the backyard looking at the stars. 

Pretty good way to start the Halloween weekend, isn't it? Tomorrow we are going to a local "Trunk or Treat" and then traditional trick-or-treating on Sunday. I can't wait!

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Lamps, Lamps, Lamps - But which one to choose?

I really need some new bedside lamps in my master bedroom. I love to read at night before going to sleep, but when my hubby is ready for bed, he just wants to sleep. Since we have no bedside lamps that means lights out and no reading for me unless I want to go back out into the living room.

I found these three lamps online and I love them all! It's so hard to choose one! What do you think?

Cooled Globes Lamp from Anthropology

Marston Crystal Lamp from Pottery Barn

Bancroft Crystal Lamp from Pottery Barn
Aren't they all great? I know that I definitely want to go with a crystal or glass base of some sort but to go with color or clear...I just can't choose!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I love Halloween and I love Glee

Just a little Halloween tidbit from the fabulous Sue Sylvester:

Monday, October 25, 2010

1 weekend, 2 black eyes!

My kiddo is so definitely his mama's boy...he managed to get not one, but two black eyes this weekend.

The first one came courtesy of his soccer game on Saturday. He managed to fall down, get a wonderful cleat mark & bruise on his arm, all the while scratching and giving himself the black eye!

Then on Saturday night, in the middle of a living room break dancing routine, he somehow ran into the wall and blackened his other eye!

Yeppers...that's my boy! Taking after his mommy and her legendary klutziness.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Link to a Giveaway!

Hi everyone! I just wanted to tell you about a give away over on Fresh Cut Flours.

She is offering a $35 gift certificate to the CSN Store of your choice! The contest only runs through today so hop on over and get yourself entered!

While you are there make sure to look around her site...she is an amazing cookie baker/decorator and has some great stuff. 

Happy Friday Everyone!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

What is Playing Wednesday

My newest musical obsession is Ray LaMontagne and his new album that he recorded with the Pariah Dogs titled God Willin' & The Creek Don't Rise.

You. Must. Get. This. Album. 

Seriously...the whole damn thing is amazing, an absolutely beautiful album from start to finish. LaMontagne is a master singer-songwriter, possibly the best of our generation and this album is filled with amazing, give-you-goosebumps, emotion, vocals and songwriting.

Here is one of my favorites off this album...Beg Steal or Borrow. Check it out below...

And as an added bonus, here is a link to my absolute favorite track from Ray LaMontagne, Trouble:

I hope you like what you hear and become as enamored with Ray LaMontagne as I am!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

One of my favorite flavors is pumpkin...I love just about anything pumpkin. Pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin spice lattes...they are all just yummy! And to me one of the best things about fall is the abundance of pumpkin and I wanted to share one of my favorite recipes with you! The bars are extremely moist and delish, especially when topped with homemade vanilla cream cheese frosting.

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

for the bars...
  • 3 whole Eggs
  • ¾ cups Canola Oil
  • 1-⅔ cup Sugar
  • 29 ounces, weight Canned Pumpkin
  • 2 cups Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
for the frosting…
  • 1 (8) ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter; softened
  • 1 lbs. confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
Directions for the Bars
1) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2) In a large mixing bowl combine the eggs, canola oil, sugar & pumpkin. Use a hand mixer on medium-high speed and mix until light and somewhat airy. (If you like, you can substitute apple sauce for 1/2 of the oil.)
3) In a separate large mixing bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
4) Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold them together until completely combined.
5) Pour the pumpkin mixture into an ungreased 15 by 10 jelly roll pan and bake for 25 minutes.
6) Allow the pumpkin bars to cool completely before frosting.

To make frosting:
In the bowl of your mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix cream cheese and butter until smooth. Gradually add in the confectioners’ sugar and mix until smooth and creamy. Stir in vanilla extract. Spread on cooled pumpkin bars.

I hope that you enjoy it as much and my family and I love it!

Linking up to:


Monday, October 18, 2010

New Logo - Assistance for Independence

I recently created a logo for a brand new non-profit called Assistance for Independence. It's a great new non-profit that helps anyone with a physical disability be able to drive by providing assistance with retro-fitting their vehicles. The client and I were very happy with the result and I just wanted to share!

Happy Monday!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Trip to Auntie's House

My sister in law is a teacher and she is on fall break this week, so she decided that she wanted some time with my little one and he went over to visit auntie’s house on Sunday-Tuesday of this week. My first thought was “yay! I get some alone time!” And the first day was great…I got to go out and get a pedicure (which was my first one in months!), I took a nap (which was awesome!) and then later in the evening my hubby and I watched Dexter…. while it was still light out! (We normally have to wait until after the kiddo is in bed to watch it!)

The second day my hubby got to sleep in…while I got up and went to work. For those of you without an early riser, sleeping in is something that we only dream of since Caleb is up by 5:30 or 6am each and every morning. While I was working my hubby was able to just putter around the house. That night we went out for date night and it was nice not to have to worry about how long the babysitter was going to be there and how much it might cost to pay her. We did a little shopping, went to a movie and then hit up a local bar to watch Monday Night Football, drink a couple of beers and have burgers.

But by then end of date night I was really starting to miss my little guy and found myself telling my hubby that the house seemed pretty empty and quiet without him around!
I couldn’t wait to get home from work on Tuesday to give him a great big hug, snuggles and kisses.

All that Caleb has been able to talk about since his trip was how much fun he had at Auntie’s house and how much he liked being able to sleep in a sleeping bag in his cousin Keola’s room. Maybe I will let him go again…but not for a while. I need lots of mommy/Caleb snuggles between now and his next visit to Auntie’s house!

Man...I just love this kids face!

One of my favorite photos that I have taken of Caleb this past year!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What is Playing Wednesdays

The past week I have been completely addicted to the album Sigh no More by Mumford and Sons. I absolutely love this album and I keep telling everyone about it and that they need to buy it!

My favorite song from the album is Winter Winds and here is the music video for it. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do!

Happy hump day...the weekend is just a couple of days away!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Learn Something New Everyday

A couple of months back I found one of the coolest websites ever! It's actually something that gives me the power to beat everyone at Jeopardy and Trivial need to check out one of my favorite daily reads, the blog Learn Something Every Day.

It's just a quirky little blog with a cartoon drawn daily giving you a new fact to learn. Some recent ones were:

Check out Learn Something Every Day and impress your friends with your super cool new knowledge!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Gettin' my home decor on!

So for the last two years, I have been planning on recovering my dining room chairs. The covers that previously on them were old, gross and Dirty (yep, that's dirty with a capital D!) and I refuse to show them to anyone...I promise you that they were that bad! For two years, I kept meaning to get around to it, two years of excuses for not doing it, two years of coming across the fabric that I had purchased (at a steal...I think I only paid $4 for the fabric at a garage sale) and stuffed into my hall closet. But when my parents were here visiting last month, I finally had some help and some gentle nudging to get the project done. I'm pretty darn happy with the results...

I really wish that I had gotten off my duff and done the project earlier! I had forgotten how easy it is to redo the fabric on chairs...all you need is are the big 3 S's : staple gun, screwdriver, & scissors. Seriously easy!

The fabric looks great with my antique dining room set and it also coordinates very well with the earth tone palette of my house. What do you think?

Linked up to:

Hump Day link

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Full, Fun-Filled Saturday

Now that it is finally cooling down here in Arizona...and by cooling down, I mean that the it is only in the 90s now, and the evenings are much more comfortable. This weekend my hubby had his first Saturday off in over a month, so we filled the day with just about as much as we could!

We started out at our weekly soccer game early Saturday morning for Caleb & Chris' team the Blaze. It was nice to not sit there sweating away, but to finally just enjoy the game. Watching these little 3 year olds has got to be one of the highlights of my week! They are just so cute and have such a good time.

Next we finally got some much needed time to work in our yard. We trimmed, pulled weeds, raked rocks and added a couple of new hibiscus to our entryway courtyard. It's nice to live with such a hot landscaper!

And while the adults were working, my little man was having a great time riding his bike around and cheering us on!

After our work outside we decided that we needed to treat ourselves, so we headed into the kitchen and whipped up a batch of yummy chocolate cookies! Don't I have just the cutest little helper? (Chocolate pudding cookie recipe to be posted sometime this week.)

And the to end the day on a high note, I met up with some friends at a local bar for some late night drinks, laughs and listening to bad karaoke while hubby and Caleb headed off to bed to rest after our awesome Saturday!

Yep, I would say that the Schell's know how to treat Saturday right! Have a great upcoming week!

Friday, October 8, 2010

I Could've Died...

It has taken me three days to write this post. Three days of fear and nightmares. Three days of the heebee jeebees.

Three days ago I came face to face with a rattlesnake. 

 Yep. A real live, in the wild, rattlesnake. And here’s how it went down…

The parent company of the publishing firm that I work for is a homebuilder. They build high end new home communities for retirees and this past Tuesday they had an event for all employees to come down to Tucson and tour their newest community. The beginning of the day started off great. It included a bus ride from the Phoenix area down to north Tucson with a few of the best coworkers a girl could ask for, a tour of the new sports center and then lunch.

Next I meandered my way up to the model home center to tour the new model homes before heading back to the valley. The first two model homes were gorgeous…and we made our way to the third model home, which was just as beautiful as the first. Then when I went to leave the home I heard someone cry out from across the street, “Don’t move! There’s a rattlesnake in front of you!!!”And yep, there he was, about 3 feet in front of us!

And that is when my friends and I did something stupid…we got closer to the snake to get a better look and better photos. WHAT WAS I THINKING?!? Getting closer to a rattlesnake for better photos? Yeah, not really my smartest move. Next thing we know the snake decides to coil up and get into attack position and finally we come to our senses and ran in the opposite direction.

On the bus ride home I think that I finally came down from the effect of the adrenaline and realized exactly how crazy scared I was. I have been shaking ever since…well not “ever” since, but when I think about it, I start shaking!

Here is another photo of the rattler…

Photos courtesy of Tara Kerwin

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Remembering the Past

Have you ever saw something that took your breath away? A photo that takes you to another time and another place…a place of amazing memories?

I came across this photo today and it did just that to me. Just behind my grandparents shop building, on the farm that I grew up on,  once stood a windmill that looked just like this…

American Windmill, Copyright Bucks County Frames

And this afternoon when I saw this photo, I got a little choked up and had a few tears well up in my eyes. I have some amazing memories playing underneath my grandparents’ windmill, playing with my brother and cousins and neighbors. Building forts, playing cops and robbers, riding bikes and enjoying life. My grandmother passed away last October and I miss her so much.

To me this is what art is about…something beautiful, something moving. It might not be that something to all people, but if it can be it to just one person, that’s enough.

You can find the photo and other great photos at Bucks County Frames on etsy or through the artist’s website at Intregity Studio.
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