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Monday, December 17, 2012

My Mayo Jar

Two years ago this month I opened Her Kitchen and Crafts. I had high hopes for my little blog. I wanted to share my creativity and talents with the world.

However since writing my first blog post I have felt nothing but guilt for not putting my all into the blog. Too many times I have written about not posting. 

It has come to my attention that at this point my mayo jar is just too full.  The mayo jar story.
I need to take sometime to slow down and enjoy the little things. I am so busy with the golf balls in my life I have forgotten to have a few drinks with friends. 

At this point in my life I am:

Working 2 part time jobs which is more time consuming than one would think. 
Planning a wedding
Working on myself 
Spending 2 days a week and only 2 days a week with my fiance. (Nothing gets done on these days) 
I am involved in a youth service organization for girls, you can check it out here
Lastly I have realized I need to spend more time with my family. As my grandparents have gotten older my mom has spent more time taking care of them, and someone needs help. 

I  will still post the ocasional picture of my endeavors on facebook and I will still fill orders from my etsy shop. 

I will be back eventually. This is a temporary hiatus until I can make this blog amazing. 


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving centerpiece

Hey everyone,

I thought I would share a quick and easy centerpiece idea with you. This project was about $15.00 and only took me about 15 minutes.

You will need:

Spade bits as seen here.

Assorted small pumpkins and squash


An electric drill


1) Prepare your work area. Lay down a towel or newspaper wo catch the flying pumpkin and squash.

2) Measure the base of your candle and choose your spade bit size. I used a 3/4 inch for the taper candles and a 1.5 inch for the tea lights.

3) Find a way to secure your pumpkin while you drill into it. I do not recommend holding it with your hand. We used two pieces of wood and out feet. Another option is a clamp if you have one.

4) Drill away!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Retro Recipe #2 Chocolate Cherry Cream Pie

This recipe was incredibly easy and equally delicious.  I actually made two versions of this pie so at the end I will tell you what NOT to do. 

We have had a rather warm fall here in California and my fiance and I were looking to spend some time in the kitchen. However we did not want to turn the oven on, this was the perfect solution. 

We ran to the local grocery store and picked up the few items we needed and got to work. 

We also totally cheated and bought an already made graham cracker pie crust and made a few changes to the recipe based on preference. So lets skip ahead to my slightly altered recipe. 

1 package SUNSHINE Honey Grahams (obviously and graham cracker brand will do)
2 TBSP Sugar
6 TBSP butter melted

Crush graham crackers with a rolling pin. Combine with remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl. Press firmly into a 9inch pie pan. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. Cool before filling.

1package (the small 4 serving package) chocolate instant pudding and pie filling
1 envelope whipped topping mix
1 can cherry pie filling

Prepare the pudding as a pie filling according to the box’s directions. Pour into prepared piecrust and chill for 30minutes. Prepare topping mix as directed on package, carefully spread over chilled chocolate filling. Spoon cherry pie filling on top. Chill for 2 hours. 


In the above picture there are 2 things that are very very wrong. Do not just go buy what you see in this picture. 

Where we went all wrong. We could not find "whipped topping mix" which my research revealed to be a cool whip like mixture. I personally do not care for cool whip so I decided to substitute whip cream. Being lazy we decided to use a can instead of making my own. BAD idea. whip cream from a can does not set up very well. We also thought that we could use a 6 serving package of pudding for the pie filling. Again this was not the case, the filling never properly set up. Our first pie ended up looking something like this. 

So on my own I tried to make the pie again. this time I made my own whip cream and used a 4 serving package of pudding. 

Doesn't that look much better? It was absolutely delicious and I will for sure be making this again. 

Don't be afraid to try new things in the kitchen, if you fail try again. 


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Bath Bombs

Hey everyone! It seems that California weather can't make up its mind. We got a small taste of fall weather this week and I decided to try this craft in anticipation of cooler weather. 

Personally I love a good bath. I am so tired of spending money on bubble bath, bath salts, and bath bombs. 

So, after a little research I found out how to make my own bath bomb. They were very easy and would make great gifts. 

Here is what you will need:

-Cornstarch 1/2 cup
-Epsom Salt 1/4 cup
-Baking Soda 1 cup
-Citric Acid 1/2 cup
-3/4 tablespoon water
-Essential Oil {optional}
-Olive Oil 2 3/4 tablespoons

I needed these items in addition to the ingredients

The Epsom salt needs to be ground before any mixing can be done. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl.

Mix the wet ingredients separately. 

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. This will create some type if chemical reaction that makes the mixture fizz!  

Shape the mixture however you'd like, I used a small plastic container. 

Let them dry completely. 

Then enjoy! 


Monday, October 8, 2012

and the winner is......

Thanks everyone for commenting on my "who reads this post".

Today I randomly selected a winner.

Congratulations Tracie! 

I will be in contact with you. 

Thanks for the great idea's everyone! 


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Who reads this thing?

I always ask but never get much of a response. So I am going to ask one more time. Who reads Her Kitchen and Crafts?

To make this more exciting I will be holding a contest. In order to enter you need to like the Her Kitchen and crafts Facebook by clicking the like symbol under this post and leave a comment about what you'd like to see more of on the blog.

The winner will receive a $15 gift card to a location of their choice (within reason I'm not trying to drive 50 miles to get your gift card).

All entries must be submitted by 9pm Sunday October 7th and a winner will be announced Monday October 8th.

Good luck!

- Courtney

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Retro Recipe #1 Butter Cake

Alright guys here it is, the first Retro Recipe. 

If you are wondering what a Retro Recipe is click HERE

In an effort to avoid spending money and the grocery store I chose this recipe. 

In my Big Bag O' Recipes there were two Butter Cake recipes.

I chose the Mel Huther recipes because if was easier to read. 
Here's the breakdown:

Here is everything you need. See why I didn't have to go to thew store? 
Mix the first four ingredients together, the batter was very thick. 

Spread the batter into a 9X13 in greased pan

Insert image that I forgot to take here.

Next combine the last four ingredients together, slowly adding the powdered sugar so that your kitchen does not look like a crack house. 

Spread this sticky mixture over the batter. 

Bake at 350° for 40 minutes. When the recipe said exactly 40 minutes they weren't kidding. 
Thinking about it I could check to make sure the edges aren't getting to crispy around 35 minutes. 

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and let cool. 

Cut into squares and serve. 

This cake was very rich and moist. However it was missing something. I think next time I would serve it with fresh berries and maybe even whip cream. 

Do you have a favorite old recipe? Share it's name in the comments below! 


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A mini adventure

Today Le Sous-chef and I ventured off to a local cake shop in Buena Park. It was amazing.  There was sprinkles, cupcake liners, candy molds and cupcake toppers stacked up everywhere. I could have spent hours in there, along with a good portion of my paycheck. :D Thankfully Le Sous-chef picked up the tab and treated me to some cupcake liners, a new pastry tip and a cookie cutter!

Here is the store's website in case you want to check it out! Be sure to check the store hours, one time a friend and I made the trip over there and they were CLOSED! 


Friday, August 31, 2012

Big Bag O' Recipes

This adventure started last summer. My mom traveled to Missouri with my grandmother to help get everything settled after her Aunt passed away. While cleaning out her home they came across a massive amount of recipes, some hand written, some magazine articles, but mostly there were newspaper clippings.  I don’t read the paper often and do not ever remember seeing recipes, let alone recipes from Sue in Small Town USA, so I thought the newspaper recipes were pretty cool.

My mother and I are both picky eaters so after sorting through them this is what we had left.  

My mom got first pick of course, so this collection is mine.

I found so many interesting recipes in the pile! Have you ever heard of daffodil cake? No? Me either. I cannot wait to bake my way through this stack and organize them into my cookbook and maybe even portfolio.  I am hoping to do two a month as a series.  I just need a catchy title some extra time and some extra money.

I’ll be back soon with the first segment of the series. If you have a catchy name leave it in the comments below! 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Baking for a cure

Hey guys! It is probably no secret that I love to bake. I mean I love to bake; I could do it all day everyday and not get tired of it. I am also as my mom says 5’1” and 5” of heart.  I am constantly finding new ways to help out those in need. This year I have combined my passions into one and raised a ton of money. 

Every October I participate in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.  In the past I have just spread the news by word of mouth, sent some cookies to work with my dad, and saved my own pennies to reach my fundraising goals. This year I set my goal very high, so I knew I would have to work hard to raise the money.

I created a Facebook event, which has helped get the word out tremendously.  I set a few goals for my fundraising.  For example: if someone donated $30.00 I will wear pink everyday in October and if I reach my goal of $500 I will dye my hair pink for the race. I also told everyone that I would bake in exchange for donations. This has method has become an absolute hit! I have been so busy baking this past week that I had to volunteer my family, fiancĂ© and good friend to help me keep up with all the orders!

Another thing I did this year was put out a basket of cookies and a donation jar at a local restaurant. I left it up to the customers to decide a fair price for the cookies. The first batch brought in $70 in just three days!

Here are some pictures of my fiancĂ© and I baking and the packaging for the cookies. 

Trying to make double batches of everything but not over powering the mixer is a challenge. 
Trying to melt semi-sweet chocolate for triple chocolate cookies.
Scooping snickerdoodle dough. Yes, that is chocolate on my arm. 
My sous chef helping me out. ;)

I added a shameless blog plug to the packaging. 

Almost ready to raise some money.
All set! 

I'll update you all just after the race. Next week I'll have a serious for you and maybe a give away.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Happy Birthday Julia Child!

I just want to take a minute to wish one of my idols, and sources of inspiration a Happy Birthday. So, Happy 100th Birthday Julia Child, although you are not here to celebrate with those who adore you, food bloggers and lovers around the world are celebrating your birthday.

When I realized what today was it was too late. I didn’t have enough time to bake anything in Julia’s honor. However had I had time I would have made something delicious and chocolate. Perhaps a simple chocolate cake or better yet a Chocolate Bavarian cream pie. A project I hope to complete in the future.

Her infectious laugh and no-frill approach to cooking is what makes Julia so loving. Not to mention she is obviously a GREAT chef and legendary woman. I hope that someday someone will refer to my cooking as decadent and delicious.

In true Julia fashion……

Bon Appetite


Sunday, August 5, 2012

How to make your cricut mat sticky again....

About a year ago I was in desperate need of a new cricut mat but did not want to spend money on a new one. I started researching and found that I could use the same cricut mat repeatedly if I bought Aleene's tack-it over and over glue, a sponge brush and a small jar.  The steps area really easy and this hardly takes and time at all.

Gather your supplies.
Mix equal parts of glue and water. 

 Brush the mixture over the whole mat.

Let the mat dry over night. 

When the mat is dry pat your hands over the entire mat, if you don't the mat will be to sticky!!

Make sure to seal the jar tight so you can use the left over mixture next time. Also rinse the brush really well. I hope this was helpful! Spoil yourself with the money you saved. :D