Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Have You Signed Up Yet?

You don't want to miss the biggest scrapbooking event of the Spring! Feeling Scrappy's Sketchapalooza 6 begins May 3 and runs through and runs through May 31st. You'll get an amazing 20 sketches (plus the digital templates if your a digi-scrapper) for only $25. All of this in a private class forum filled with support from the design staff and class participants. Jayne, Lee, Tracy and I are all busy working behind the scenes to make this a wonderful class. Just click here to sign up now!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Baked Ham & Eggs

This has become one of our favourite weekend meals. It meets my criteria: easy to make, easy to clean up and tasty. Even better, it's flexible for the little crowd as you can always add a bit of food colour and voila - green eggs and ham! Add an English Muffin and you've got yourself a breakfast sandwich. I've been making this for my kids since I saw it on CanadaAM late last fall and it is a hit every time!
To make 6 servings:

6 round paper thin slices of deli ham (about 8 oz total)
6 large eggs
2 tbsp whipping cream or 18% cream
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
1/3 cup finely diced Gruyère or Swiss Cheese
  1. Grease 6 metal muffin cups or 1-cup ovenproof ramekins and line each with 1 slice of ham to create cup.
  2. Crack egg into each ham cup. Drizzle cream evenly over eggs. Add salt and pepper. Sprinkle with cheese.
  3. Place muffin sheet on cookie sheet and place in 400*F oven until whites are just set but yolks are still a bit runny. This takes about 12 to 15 minutes depending on your oven.
  4. Serve and enjoy.
Oh, you might want to run a knife along the edges to loosen the ham. Then serve and enjoy!

Make sure you have on the table: ketchup, hot sauce, sliced tomatoes and extra Gruyère. Serve with English muffins, bagels and steaming hot coffee.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I have been lucky enough to participate in all of Feeling Scrappy's Sketchapalooza classes to date. I can't begin to tell you how inspiring the class is. I personally accomplish so much during the class! During this self-paced class you will receive 5 sketches a week for 4 weeks. Yes, that is a total of 20 sketches. Not only do you get those sketches in a PDF file at the end of the class but you can also download layered templates (PS of PSE) of the sketches for digital layouts! The best of both worlds! This is in a private forum with tons of support from the design team and the participants! The private gallery fills with amazing and inspiring interpretations of the sketches. There will be challenges, games and prizes as well. All that for only $25!

I'm so excited for the Sketchapalooza 6 class to start in May! Currently Jayne, Lee, Tracy and I are all busy working behind the scenes to make this class the best yet. Be sure to sign up if you haven't done so already!

I thought I would share with you some of the layouts I have created during Sketchapalooza 1-5 .

Monday, March 22, 2010

Sketch Challenge Winner!

Thanks to everyone that played along with our latest sketch challenge! From all the lovely layouts submitted, we drew a random winner to receive $10.00 off the Sketchapalooza 6 class coming up in May!

Congratulations to Lisa Harrower Tauzell! (Please email me at feelingscrappy at yahoo dot com for all the details) Here is the beautiful layout she submitted!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Happy Spring!

As you probably already know yesterday was the first day of spring! Is it looking like spring at your house? Spring came a few weeks earlier than normal at my house this, so I had to document what it looked like on the first day of spring. The cherry blossoms and daffodils are almost done. A couple of the rhododendrons are blooming and one is about to (the one that is usually open for Mother's Day!) The photos in the collage below are photos I took in my yard and then used a FREE template from Jessica Sprague to make a fast, fun easy collage. (There is even a tutorial there if you need help getting started).

What does spring mean for you? Lots of flowers in the yard? Baseball gear? Track shoes? Take a few moments to capture your 'spring' photos and create a photo collage or layout. Please share with us by linking through the comments below or on our Feeling Scrappy Facebook Group site.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Celebrate a Woman You Admire!

Did you know that March is Woman’s History Month?

My challenge to you: scrapbook a page about someone famous (or should be) and how she has influenced you. Or scrapbook about a woman you admire; or an influential woman you would like to meet. Be sure to journal about why you admire this woman, or why you would like to meet them, or why you think they should be famous!

Here is my layout:

The journaling reads: In my life there was no one more supportive, loving or protective than my father's mother, my Nanny. I was so fortunate to be the recipient of her determination and unwavering commitment to family. She taught me, first hand, that doing right has nothing to do with being in the majority; if you're going to raise your hand you better do your best; and, nothing is more important than the children you raise. I hope to live up to her example. Every day.

And, if you're a sketch collector, like me, here is one you can use to base your own tribute:

Be sure to share your layout on the Feeling Scrappy Facebook Gallery.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Super Simple Cookies

Delicious, inexpensive homemade cookies made so easy that anyone can do it! And there is no need to wait for butter to soften! You can choose your own gourmet flavors too. The secret? Start with a cake mix. Yes, you read that right. A cake mix.

Cake Mix Cookies:
1 standard size cake mix
2 eggs
1/2 c. vegetable oil
approx. 3/4 c. additives of your choice (chocolate chips, raisins, coconut, nuts, etc.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix all the ingredients together until well blended.
Drop by teaspoons onto cookie sheets
Bake at 350* for 10-12 minutes. Yields about 3 dozen cookies

Flavor suggestions:
Triple Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix and Pecans (pictured above)
Carrot or Spice Cake Mix and Raisins
German Chocolate Cake Mix and coconut
Chocolate cake mix and white chocolate chips
White cake mix and chocolate chips

Give this a try and let us know the flavor you made in the comments section below!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Is that Spring in the air?

I don't know about where you are, but here in Southern Ontario (Canada, outside of Toronto) we can sense Spring is almost here! I am already thinking of planting my pots of flowers and tomato plants; putting out the patio furniture and washing all the windows. I will still have to wait another month or more for any of that to happen.

So, in the meantime, I don't want to waste this feeling of energy and anticipation! To celebrate the departure of winter, I can do things inside to herald the arrival of sunshine and happiness!

My idea of fun? SPRING CLEANING!

What is your favourite thing to do? Do you like to tackle big projects or start small? I go through my entire house, from top to bottom and make a list of all the big and small projects in every room. It is  an overwhelming, but necessary, task. Sometimes, intimidation rears it's ugly head and I find it hard to get motivated so I start with something small. Once that’s done, I always realize it really didn’t take too much time at all and ultimately carry on and get far more accomplished than I expected. It is such a wonderful feeling. Pure bliss.

So, this weekend, in anticipation of Spring, I am going to dedicate some time to cleaning out my bathroom drawers: toss all of the old makeup, expired medications, combine or toss all of the bottles with just a smidge of product on the bottom and give all of my towels a good wash - they're all white, so a good soak in bleach alternative too! I bet (other than the laundry) it will take me less than 15 minutes to get it all done. A quarter hour well spent!

Head over to these sites for great Cleaning and Organizing ideas:

Let us know what you manage to accomplish. I'll be posting my "before" and "after" photos over on the Facebook page. Be sure to check it out on Monday!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

New Sketch Challenge!

We have a brand new sketch for you today made by the talented Stacey Curry! Be sure to check out her blog for some awesome creative inspiration. Anyone who completes a layout using this sketch and posts it to our Facebook gallery by next Friday (March 19th) will be entered into a drawing to win 1/2 off our next sketch class! Have Fun! :)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Straight Border Punch on a Curve

Do you love border punches as much as I do? Do you ever with you could make them go around a curve, oval or circle? Now you can! Here is an easy way to do it!

1) Punch your border punch along the full length of your paper.

2) Trim your punched edge, leaving enough width to work with. Mine was 3/4".
3) Clip your border edge between each repeat of the pattern.

4) It should bend and curve easily, but not fall apart.

5) Trim a piece of paper with a curve. (Circles and ovals work as well). 6)Generously apply adhesive to the curve you plan to put your border edge on.

7) Working from the front adhere each section of your punched border edge.
8) Your ready to apply the curving border punched edge to a layout or card.

Completed cards:

I hope you give it a try! Please share your projects with us either by posting a link in the comments here or on the Feeling Scrappy Facebook Page!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Mmmmm. Stew!

This is one of the very first recipes I tried in my crock pot, years ago. It continues to be a favourite in my household. It is a bit cumbersome, but the results? Worth every minute of preparation!

This is an elegant, simple, delicious meal. The flavours are wonderfully subtle. What could be better?

1 Tbsp Olive Oil (15mL)
3 oz. Pancetta diced to 1/4" (90g)
2 lbs Stewing Veal, cut into 1" cubes (1Kg)
3 Leeks, white part only, coarsely chopped (3)
30 Baby carrots cut in half (30)
2 Celery stalks, diced (2)
2 Garlic cloves, minced (2)
1.5 Tbsp Fresh Rosemary Leaves, chopped (1.5T)
1 tsp Salt (5mL)
1/2 tsp Freshly ground pepper (2mL)
2 Tbsp All Purpose Flour (25mL)
1/2 C Dry Red Wine (125mL)
1/2 C Condensed Chicken Broth, undiluted (125mL)

In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add pancetta and cook, stirring until browned. Use slotted spoon to transfer to slow cooker stoneware.

Add veal to pan in batches. Cook, stirring until batch begins to brown. Use slotted spoon to transfer to slow cooker. Continue cooking in batches until all veal is browned.

Add leaks, carrots and celery to pan and cook, stir until softened. Add rosemary, garlic, salt, pepper and cook for 1 minute. Sprinkle flour over mixture and cook for 1 more minute. Add wine and chicken broth and stir until mixture thickens.

Pour thickened mixture over meat in slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 8 to 10 hours or on High for 4 to 6 hours. Serve with Polenta, mashed potatoes or crusty bread.

The best part of this recipe, over the years the kids have decided to help out! Here is the process:
I make sure I have all of my ingredients before I start. 
Chloe and Caden help peel the carrots while I take care of the sizzling pancetta. 
The leeks, carrots and celery are all chopped up (big chunks) and wait in a bowl.
After the veal is browned and moved to the crock pot all of the veggies are added and softened in the pan.
Caden continues to be helpful as my sous chef. Here he's adding salt, pepper, garlic and rosemary to the cooked vegetables. 
The vegetables have been floured and chicken stock has been added, along with the wine. Now it's time to wait! Six or seven hours later. Delicious!

I know this is not your typical stick-it-in-the-pot-and-wait slow cooker recipe and you do need a bit of time to prepare, but my, is it ever worth the effort! If you find you have a slow, damp day that screams for some comfort food, this is the perfect solution. 

One thing to note: my kids are not crazy about Rosemary and I have modified the recipe to less than the original. The original calls for burying a whole sprig in the middle of the pot while cooking. So, if you like Rosemary, feel free to add more!

Enjoy your day!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Photography Challenge: Shoot from the Hip

How about a fun, different and EASY photo challenge?

This challenge will work best if you have your camera set on its auto setting. Leave your camera hanging from the strap around your neck and start snapping away or have it on your lap if you are sitting. No looking through the viewfinder or at the screen. This will give you a totally different perspective than looking through the viewfinder. If you have young children this is more likely to be at their eye level and what they see when they are walking through a crowd. If you have family members that hide their faces every time you bring your camera up to your eye this may be a way to sneak some photos of them. Don't worry if your photos are crooked or the subject isn't centered like you hoped.....That is part of the fun!

I hope you have fun with this challenge and will share your photos either by linking them in the comments section here of on the Feeling Scrappy Facebook site.

Here are some samples of some I've taken.