Thursday, November 29, 2012

Movie inspiration: Water for Elephants

I read the book "Water for Elephants" a few years ago .. so it wasn't recent enough in my head to make me want to watch the movie with any real excitement.

BUT -- watching the movie made me remember what a good book it was! The movie definitely does it justice, but the best part was the 1930's wardrobes and costumes!

It's basically a romance set in a traveling circus in the 30's ... super glamorous.

LOVE the headpieces!!!

There's also some fab evening gowns ... definitely worth a watch if you come across it.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Awesome sauce!

Today me and Kate (other friend named Kate!) made homemade apple sauce!! Kate is a canning professional and this was my "introduction"to the wide world of food preservation.

FIRST, get a lot of apples. Wash with a produce wash if available. The main thing about canning is cleanliness. Anything you can do to keep things sanitary is good.

NEXT, peel and core your apples. We had this fancy apple peeler from Pampered Chef. It didn't always work though ... but it sure helps with hand cramping from the regular peeler.

Put your apple pieces in a big pot with about 2 inches of water. Cook until soft (about 20 minutes or so.) 

Drain your apples and puree in a food processor (things are starting to shape up --- and smell AMAZING.) 

Re-heat your pureed applesauce in a pot until it gets to 200 degrees F. In the meantime, boil your lids and gather your jars. The jars should be freshly washed and sanitized with heat in the dishwasher.

Fill your jars with a funnel to about the bottom of the lid (do not over-fill.) Return them to a boiling water bath with the lids on and cook another 20 minutes to seal and pressurize.

Allow jars to cool and you will hear them "popping" as they contract and seal up nice and good :)

NOTE: You can certainly add sugar, cinnamon ... what have you. We kept them simple since the apple variety was pretty sweet on its own.

ENJOY! :) 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Photo shoot with Kate in the mountains!

I know I said I was going to make this blog a 'wedding planning blog' a few months ago. I guess I was still in the panic stages of a newly engaged person. 

But, I've realized that life does goes on! (With more interesting pursuits.)

SUCH AS: Photo shoot session with model Kate!

(As an ironic note, we went to the place where I will be getting married — Gambrill State Park in Frederick).

I don't consider myself that good of a photographer. I rely way too much on post-shoot editing, and sometimes that gets me in trouble! But, all in all, I think Kate does a great job at modeling, and it's hard to take a bad photo of the gal! 


I loved that pomegranate! Never been more excited about fruit.

Favorite I think. ^^

Dreamy lighting ...

Love hands!

These two look so renaissance to me for some reason.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

What I'm looking forward to (entertainment-wise)

First, two British dramas that I LOVE and cry after each episode!

 1.) "Call the Midwife" 

If you haven't heard of this yet ... definitely check it out! I'm sure Season 1 is available on Netflix, and if you are at all into heart-warming historical drama, than this is your ticket!  No idea when Season 2 will make it over to the States. I hear they are just shooting it in the UK now .. :( 

2.) "Downton Abbey"

It's just so romantical ... and it makes me SWOON!!! Sigh. It's like a soap opera with amazing costumes, scenery, and good acting. Season 3 starts in January ... and I believe PBS is re-playing Season 2 beforehand.  

3.) "Les Miserables" -- The movie!!

Super excited for this movie!!!! I'm a pretty devout fan of the musical .. seen it twice! And Richard says he might maybe possibly want to see it, too. HA! SUCCESS!! 

4.)  "World War Z" -- (though I haven't read the book ... and though it supposedly has nothing to do with the book). But I still love a good zombie movie.

Have I missed anything?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Holiday gear-up time

Does anyone else start feeling weird this time of year? Maybe it's the time change ... or the weather. I feel like I can't get anything done! I've had a load of laundry sitting in the dryer for 2 days now. No real reason. 

I also feel super restless (in a contradictory way.) I can't just sit and watch a movie. I HAVE to be doing something else. 

It's like the time is ticking away for the year.

And there's gift shopping ... and the car insurance payment ... and TAXES. Oh taxes.

I guess it's a normal "holiday craziness" that can't be avoided.


Here are some new vintage ornaments that are sparkly and good. 

Pine cone ornament 

Butterfly ornament