Tuesday, December 15, 2009

gingerbread house and other fun holiday things

Our gingerbread house this year is larger than we normally have. I have usually bought pre made kits, but this year I decided to tackle an real one. After it was baked I got to enjoy decorating it with white icing. SO much fun.

I was dreaming away of pastel colored candy and powder sugar to finish it of, but that would not have been fair to Oliver and Celia who patiently was waiting for me to finis the house so they could bombard it with candy decoration.
So we invited their favorite people in the whole world, cousin Chloe and cousin Nicolas to come
over to bake cookies and decorate the house.

It turned out really cute with loads of candy on the roof!
The kids can not wait until Christmas comes so they can smash the house with a hammer and eat the candy and icing. Sooo much suggar....

The window display at Tiffany & Co is amazing this year! The paper art is beautiful, made me want to go home and sharpen my scissors.

I love the sled and the frost branches, and my moms profile in the refleciton.

My mom and Celia making marzipan 'nisser' / santa

I sent a load of christmas cards to Norway last week. It made me realize how
close we are to christmas. Only a week and a half left! Oliver and Celia are counting
down the days, writing wish lists and making little treasures. My mom has been visiting so together we have been busy making gingerbread house and cookies, marzipan, glazed almonds and caramels.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Rhubarb and Plum Jam

Summer vacation is coming to an end. Oliver and Celia are going back to school tomorrow. Yet again, our summer flew by so fast. In hope to preserve a little bit of this summer I have been making jam. Lots of jam!

I found a great plum and rhubarb jam recipe at a lovely blog named apple & spice . It was easy to make and tasted fantastic!
The recipe asked for brow sugar which gave the jam a rich flavor. It also gives instructions on canning without boiling the jars in a big pot of water. Which means, no splashing scolding hot water around the kitchen, a big plus. I had so much fun and the house smelled heavenly.

I had loads of strawberries so I ended up with strawberry and rhubarb jam too.

The success of the plum and rhubarb jam made me try another recipe from the same blog. Plum and vanilla jam!
You add a vanilla pod to the jam while cooking, and it smelled so good! After canning the jam Adel and I sampled the jam on crackers with some goat cheese gouda and brie and a glass of Savignon Blanc. Incredible.
I think the jam will also be great over ice cream and on crepes.

Thursday night is farmers market here in San Carlos. Last week was wonderful. The berries and peaches were so flavorful, seemed to be at its peak.
My plan is to pick up some blackberries and raspberries for one more batch of jam.

A little bit of summer in a jar.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Summer surprise

Every day at around 4 we hear barking, it is the arrival of the mailman. Dash dutifully warns us that we have an intruder outside our fence. The barking quickly stops as soon as the mailman has placed the mail in its slot and left. But yesterday Dash did not stop barking. When we ( Oliver, Celia and I ) reached the door to investigate the situation, Dash was proud to show us the arrival of a box!

Since there are no birthdays coming up before November we were very curious. We quickly opened the box and inside we found presents!!! Lots of exciting presents. We love presents! Our dear friend Sissel, Jonah and Synnøve had sent us summer surprises all the way from Norway.

Lots of treasures!

Thank you soooooo much! We loved it. Loved it, loved it. loved it!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Hand painted table for Thomas and Michele

I have been decorating this play table for Thomas and his little sister Michele in
Half Moon Bay.
One side has a little princes tea party and on the opposite side a knight with his dragon.
Thomas and Michele were both excited to find their initials on the crowns in the border and on the flags on top of the castle.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Needle felted bunnies

Two little summer girls are heading out to find new homes at Shelby's Garden.
They are both needle felted from wool.

This little girl wears a dress made from Celia's old shorts.

Picking 4th of July flowers

Happy summer!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tutankhamun at De Young Museum

My Egyptian Hieroglyphs

King Oliver and Queen Celia
outside De Young

Adel and I took the kids to see the Tutankhamun exhibit at the De Young museum in
San Francisco last night. It was a great exhibit. Oliver and Celia loved it. They were completely
grossed out by the fact that the Egyptians mummified the intestines of their kings and placed it
in boxes that we were looking at.

We saw a beautifully decorated coffin from one of the other burial places and lots of artifacts from Tuthankhamun and other kings and noble people.

We went to the twilight showing, so when we were finished looking at the exhibit we had dinner at the museum restaurant. A surprisingly good dinner. Oliver and Celia ran in the garden with the sculptures while they waited for dinner. Oliver discovered a statue of 'The Death Star' ( part of De Young museums permanent collection) which was according to him the coolest statue ever! Adel and I enjoyed a three course dinner before we all walked back to the car in the dark. Celia and Oliver were sound asleep in the back seat on the way home.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Kransekake for wedding

I spent some time this last weekend baking a Kransekake for a wedding. Kransekake is my absolute favorite cake.
For those of you that reads this, scratch your head and say "Kranse...what?" A Kranekake has eighteen graduated almond paste rings. It is made from almonds, egg white and powdered sugar. ( So both gluten and fat free).
It is the signature cake of Norway and a staple at anniversaries, birthdays, and holiday celebrations.

In this case the bride wanted to add some of her Norwegian traditions to the wedding and the cake was a natural choice.

Owl eyes...

My favorite part. Assembling. Decorating with icing.

The cake was dressed with pink paper flowers

ready for the ball

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Hand painted furniture

I just finished a custom order for a hand painted desk, hutch a chair. It still needs varnish before it is going to its home. Now Celia wants a desk for her room... She is starting 1st grade
so it is time to start looking for a desk for her.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Chloe and Celia's birthday cake

Celia and Chloe in fondant

Chloe and Celia's birthdays are two days apart, so being best friends and cousins
they had a blast celebrating their special day together.
I used fondant to sculpt a figure of the girls. My sister in law Liz made beautiful
marzipan flowers for decoration.
The cake is covered in marzipan and has strawberries and custard between layers
of sponge cake.


I had so much fun making Marshmallow flowers for Celia's class. Pretty easy as long as you work fast (the marshmallow will set in the piping bag if you work too slow).
All you need is sugar, water, gelatin and a candy thermometer. And lots of sanding sugar for

Monday, May 4, 2009

Celia just turned 6. We had a Bunny Petting Zoo at our house. Georgia from Bunny Central
came with lots of bunnies in all sizes. She brought three litters of  new borne bunnies, babies and adult rabbits. The kids loved it! The kids got to pet and feed the bunnies. Celia got to
walk one of the bunnies on a leash. She had so much fun, we all did.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Needle felt

Spring is in the air.
This little easter gathering is going to its
new home today.
They are moving in with Chloe.

I needle felted them using wool and decorated the box with
paper and paint.