Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Ladies that Lunch....


Today I took a half day from work! (miracle in itself!!). My friend Karen met me, we had a leisurely lunch, lots of chatting and then a bit of shopping in Selfridges!...
yes I know i work there but so much happens in the store on a daily basis that it was lovely to bimble round, & browse. I saw lots of lovely things for Christmas, and it was great to view it from someone else's perspective. I forget what a fab shopping experience it is.....
we then finished the day off with a glass of wine before heading back into the suburbs after rush hour.
a Fab day had by both.....

Sunday, 27 September 2009

The de-clutter begins!

this year one of my resolutions was to create more of a home for myself, what with one thing and another (loosing Gramps) I haven't done anything about it.
My house needs some major re-decoration and a really good clear-out!... I can't put it off any longer, I have a colleague re-locating from Leicester to London and everyone thinks that my spare room would be an ideal re-location for a few months until she is settled. Having done the relocation thing I can empathise with her on how difficult it is, also the company would be welcome at the moment.... so a huge clear-out is required!
This challenge is big and time is limited so its all go at the moment... I can always remember my nan having a good clear out in Sept/Oct getting ready for the winter, so this is my Autumnal De-Clutter!
This recent read has also been inspirational.... A Spring Affair mmmm I hope that my 'skip' man is as yummy!
So my top tips for myself are:
Y Be Brave!
Y One Room at a Time
Y Make a Mess
Y Be Logical
Y Not All Clutter is Junk
Y Storage Solutions
Y Get Rid Feel Good
Y Relax........

Saturday, 26 September 2009

A New York moment............


This weekend saw the new release of FAME....this film was a huge inspiration to me, followed by the spin off tv series, remember this!

Fame started my love affair with New York, it was somewhere that i had to go, (especially as you got to dance on the top of yellow taxi!).. I wasn't even in my teens when this first hit but can remember being swept up into the whole Dance/Music school vibe.... jazz shoes & leg-warmers were a huge hit!

My love affair with New York continues on, and still my favourite place in the world. I won't get there this year but are planning for next year already!... in the mean time I have discovered The City which is the spin-off of The Hills... it is addictive, especially Olivia who is quite hideous. so this will ease my NY fix for the next few weeks. Also recently discovered is Lipstick Jungle this is written by Candace Bushnell writer of Sex & the City. Loved the book... series did not disappoint..especially the character of Kirby Oh my word... definitely candidate for Scrum of the Week!

This week sees me having an ugly betty moment.. I'm undecided on whether to cut a fringe into my hair, however I am worrying that i will look like Ugly Betty's mum in doing so!... watch this space!


Friday, 25 September 2009

Thank Crunchie its Friday!


that's how I feel today!........ work's been a little demanding the last couple of weeks, due to sickness & holidays and I'm shattered. A much needed cupcake fix was needed, so Honeycomb Cupcakes were made... accompanied by a little of Cadbury's finest..
Chocolate Honeycomb Cupcakes
(Makes 12)
Y 60g Butter, softened
Y 1/4 cup castor sugar
Y 1 tsp vanilla essence
Y 1 egg
Y 3/4 cup self raising flour
Y 1/4 cup milk
Y approx 75g or 1 cup of honeycomb crumbs
Icing ~ Icing sugar, Butter & vanilla essence - mix to required taste. Honeycomb square to decorate.
1. Pre-heat oven to 175' and line a 12 hole muffin pan with cupcake cases.
2. Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugar, then add vanilla and egg. Beat until well combined. Fold in half the flour and milk until mixture is smooth. Repeat with remaining flour and milk and stir until batter is smooth. Either chop or crush honeycomb and stir into batter. Three quarters fill each paper case with batter.
3. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then remove from oven. Leave cakes to cool in the pan for 10min and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
4. Spread icing on cupcakes. Sprinkle the cupcakes with either some leftover honeycomb crumbs or top with with a small chunk of honeycomb.

Eat with Hot Chocolate, topped with whipped cream & honeycomb crumbs..........

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

knit 1, purl 1....

the nights are drawing in, so perfect time for the knitting needles to come out!.... this year i'm spolit for choice crochet or knitting!!... mmm my friends complain that i'm a 'hermit' already as i'm a nightmare to get out! i've now got something else to keep me from venturing out!!!...
Tonight I made over a knitting pattern book of my nans, with some great papers from cosmo cricket and a stamp from hanglar....its full of old patterns which i love. They bring back lots of memories as my gramps knitted a lot for me when I was little.
I've also knitted a little bag to put my crocheting in, whilst i'm on the train in the morning!... granny squares are coming on!
Jane who I blogged about recently has listed some new workshops for October... check them out here.
It looks like she's caught the blogging bug too! I've booked to do the flower brooches... hopefully will see some of you there!
I have also discovered this amazing blog by Vanessa, who's crocheted scarf is so on my wish list.....a lovely bright funky blog. Kelly has also posted a knitting post, supporting this great cause and a worthy reason to get the knitting needles out!
This weeks train read is the fitting "The Knitting Circle" which i picked up in the charity shop this week...
Recipes of London Life has come back after its summer break.. check it out here.
have a great week... Tx

Monday, 21 September 2009

Cupcake Winners.....

Alas National Cupcake week has come to end... thankyou all for the lovely comments, I hope that you have enjoyed the week as much as me....
the final blog cupcake candy is:
Y Cupcake Book
Y 6" x 6" pack of the Nannas Kitchen papers (1 of each)
Y 1 pack of "Sweet" papers (postcard size)
Y selection of yummy cupcakes cases
Y 10 x Sweets & Treats cards & envelope (recipe included on each)
Y ~ collection of cupcake stamped images
Y ~ cupcake shopping list
Y ~ Cupcake Diary 2010
Y ~ Cupcake wrapping paper
Y ~ Cupcake Fizz Bomb
Inside the Cupcake Cookie jar are all the entries... and the winners is:
KELLY ~ Recipes of Life
I have a little runners-up gift for Mel, so email me your addresses and I will get them sent to you both... Enjoy!

Friday, 18 September 2009

National Cupcake Week Day 5 ~ Books to Eat


If there was the equivalent of an AA for books I would probably have to join it and confess that I am a book addict.
I can't remember ever not having my head in a book, this obviously spills over to Cupcake books as well! .... I'm a sucker for a gorgeous scrummy picture on the front, the yummier the better..... Here are a few of my favs, for either the recipe or just to devour the pictures.
Y The Hummingbird Bakery ~ a joy from cover to cover, both for the recipes and as a coffee table read.
Y Cake Chic - Peggy Porschen ~ any of Peggy's books are a must, the 'Christian Louboutin' of cakes!
Y Magnolia Bakery Cookbook ~ no cupcake devotee would be without a Magnolia. Sex & the City catapulted the cupcake to stardom and a trip to New York would be incomplete without a stop off at 401 Bleecker Street.
Y Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey ~ not a specific cupcake book, but a feast on the taste buds and a must for a sweet tooth!
Y Crabapple Bakery Cupcake Book ~ a real hidden gem. recipes are a joy and the names are sumptuous....
currently on my wish list is Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery..... it may just fall in the shopping basket this month!... the highlighted titles will take you to a detailed review & more pics, enjoy!
what's your favorite cupcake book?
ps.. the highlighted titles will take you to a detailed review & more pics, enjoy!

Thursday, 17 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 4 ~ Shopping List


great ingredients are key to making yummy cupcakes. If you are anything like me then you spend half your time in the supermarket wandering aimlessly up the aisle with a shopping trolley, having completely forgotten what you need!... well don't fear I have made a little Shopping List notebook which I will be adding to the pile of treats....
talking of shopping I have found a few goodies which I am coveting... i'm loving these bits from John Lewis, and i'm spolit for choice on all these goodies at Laura Ashley (fortunately they have just opened a gift store at Liverpool Street Station, so may just have to pop in!)... have a great day... treat yourself to a cupcake!
Tx
ps don't forget to tell all your blog friends of my little giveaway...

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 3.... A cupcake for all seasons.

Today I am posting 4 recipes to take us through the cupcake year... these are some of my favourites from tried & tested recipes.....

Spring ~ Hummingbird Cupcakes ...originated from Southern America and made famous in the Magnolia Bakery New York...

Summer ~ where would summer be without a refreshing Gin & Tonic in the garden!... these are delicious and always a big hit at dinner parties!....

Autumn... I was spoilt for choice on this one but the Baileys Cupcakes won through... these are particularly yummy accompanied by a Baileys Latte!.... the volume of Baileys in this recipe is conservative feel free to add an extra splash!

The final season is of course Winter, there are so many great recipes but I picked my Christmas Morning Cupcakes which are scrummy warm from the oven, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar or cold with cinnamon cream cheese icing!

....please click on cupcake name and this will take you to the recipe link...Enjoy!

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 2....Cupcake Challenge



To celebrate National Cupcake week I have made a card, and completed a challenge over at taylored expressions.... Taylor makes some fab Cupcake stamps.. check them out here.
.... I have been researching the history of the "Cupcake", there are 2 explanations for the name:

Y In the early 19th century, there were two different uses for the name "cup cake" or "cupcake". In previous centuries, before muffin tins were widely available, the cakes were often baked in individual pottery cups, ramekins, or molds and took their name from the cups they were baked in. This is the use of the name that has persisted, and the name of "cupcake" is now given to any small cake that is about the size of a teacup, alternatively the names origin came from the measurement or baking, where everything was measured in cups and not by weight.



Teresa x Y x

Monday, 14 September 2009

National Cupcake Week.... yummy treats


This week is national Cupcake week in the UK, so in honour of such a fab week I will be giving away a little cupcake themed parcel of goodies!....

As the week goes on I will be adding to the little pile and one lucky recipient will receive all the cupcake goodies. The giveaway will be open until Sunday 21st September. To be entered into the draw, please leave a comment and pop back during the week as I will be posting a daily cupcake entry in honour of the week!

All comments posted will be put into a large cupcake and one lucky recipient will receive the yummy treats!

These are the treats so far......
Y Cupcake Book
Y 6" x 6" pack of the Nannas Kitchen papers (1 of each)
Y 1 pack of "Sweet" papers (postcard size)
Y selection of yummy cupcakes cases
Y 10 x Sweets & Treats cards & envelope (recipe included on each)
Y Tuesday ~ collection of cupcake stamped images added...


Today whilst in sainsbury's i noticed that even they had got the cupcake bug!.....
featuring a fab article by the Queen of cupcakes herself Peggy Porschen, worth popping in a picking up a copy!

Teresa
XYX

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Crochet for Dummies!.........


i've been practising and look what i've made!!... I sat last night watching a film on TV and completed 2 squares. I was very excited, especially as I remembered what to do!.

AND... Look what I picked up in the charity shop on friday for the bargain price of 50p!... they were having a sale and all their books were half price!... Crochet for Dummies!

This will keep me occupied during the winter months, knitting & crocheting a throw for me so snuggle under on the sofa!


Saturday, 12 September 2009

Picnic in the Park!............

well not quite!.........the car park of Wembley Stadium. Today Saracens took on Northampton saints at Wembley Statdium. It's the first time that a Rugby match has taken place on the hollowed turf of wembley and what a fab day was had my all!.... in fact over 44,000 of us.
We arrived at Wembley at set up the picnic..... the weather was glorious and several other people had the same idea! After being fed and watered we entered the stadium.
It is a fantastic venue and bathed in the sunshine it looked glorious. There was entertainment on before the game which included a band called The Lightnings, Sarries 'v' Saints tug of war, and then Diversity (winners of Britains got Talent),
This was then followed by the Royal Marines who abseiled off the top of the stadium with the ball to start the game along with the Sarries mascot!

Game kicked off and it was thrilling... another nail biter for sarries with saints having a try disallowed 90 seconds from the end!....

we finished off the afternoon finishing off the picnic in the park!

Friday, 11 September 2009

Tea and Crafting.............

is how I spent my evening last night, learning to crochet Granny Squares!. Crochet is one of the few crafts that I didn't learn as a child... my Gramps was great at knitting, tapestry,and rug making, but he never mastered the art of crochet!...
I have had a hankering for some time to learn the basics, if only to make a square blanket for my old age! and I have coveted other bloggers crochet from afar... in particular Debbies blanket.
A couple of weeks I stumbled upon this site whilst eating my lunch at my desk.... Tea and Crafting
I contacted Jane and booked myself onto the Granny Squares. The venue is in Portland Place just down from the Landmark Hotel, which is a short walk from work. On arrival it turned out that it was just me, so I had 2hours of 1:1 tuition which was really great.

The evening started painfully for me, I am a bit of a perfectionist so the fact that I couldn't master chain stitch was a little frustrating, so the thought of completing a square by the end of the evening was a long and distant dream. Jane was lovely, really patient and a great teacher. After trying to crochet chain stitch I had to choose 3 lovely colours from this pile to make my square!... and we started, the first block was daunting, but ended up like this..... then suddenly after adding a second colour it all began to make sense!...
Then a third colour and suddenly i was on a roll!....... the evening drew to a close, and I left clutching some bundles of wall, a crochet hook and something resembling a Granny square!... I am pleased to say that I completed my square on the tube & train on the way home.

Here is my finished (other than darning off the loose ends) square!..... I did chuckle to myself on the train as I felt like one of the grannies knitting the shreddies in the Shreddie advert (this will be my friend Justine & I in a few years as the 'hot' conversation is daily whenever we are on the train together!!)
This was a great evening, I learnt a new craft and jane was lovely... a definite hit for anyone wanting to learn the basics... i've already tried to book on the crochet flower evening, but its full!...... Jane's posting some October dates soon...

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's...........

last night I went to see the first night preview of Breakfast at Tiffany's at the Haymarket Theatre in London. Anna Friel is staring as Holly Golightly, with this is mind I knew that it wasn't likely to be 'frothy'!.... As a warning to anyone who is thinking of going, if you Y the film and have never read the book, then this isn't for you.
This is a good adaptation of Truman Capotes book, which if you have read will know that its quite gritty and not glossed with Hollywood! (Truman hated the film and his estate are very strict on how his work is now adapted)
The other 'spoiler' is that Holly in the book is blonde, so Anna dons a blonde wig to play the role ..... she very much puts her style on the character and is not as ditsy as Audrey Hepburn. (Please don't think that I dislike the film or Audrey .. it is one of my favs, and she is great, but it is very different from the book).. what it does have is some lovely dresses worn by Miss Friel.
It is some time since I saw a play, I did enjoy it, i'm glad I went on my own, as you do have to concentrate as the narrative is quite fast. It is also quite long 3hrs in total, fortunately I'm learning that going to the theatre on your own you are more likely to be up-graded... so my £10 ticket saw me sitting in the £50 seats...bargain!!!... Overall a great adaptation of an iconic book, the set is very simple but incredibly effective, the cat comes very close to stealing the show.. worth a visit if only to see Joseph Cross (William/Fred) in the buff... a very pleasant surprise!... would I go again.. probably not, BUT I am really glad that I went.
On route to the opulent Haymarket, i did my own little piece of Tiffany browsing. The Old Bond Street store isn't anywhere near as iconic as the legendary 5th Avenue store but it is a beautiful building that still has the wow factor!....

Monday, 7 September 2009

The boys are back in town..........



Saturday saw the kick off of the 2009/10 Guinness Rugby Premiership... Sarries were at Twickenham for their opening game against London Irish in the Double Header. This is where the 4 London clubs all meet at Twickenham to play against each other.
Saracens 'v' London Irish and Harlequins 'v' Wasps.

There was obviously lots of testosterone flying around as there was several 'sin bins' fights and a red card 46 seconds into the harlequin & wasps game.... great fun all round!

We got to Twickenham about 1 hour & 45 minutes before the game which allowed us to park up adjacent to the ground and get the picnic table out, as we were setting up a range rover pulled up behind us with the number plate W4SPS.. and out jumped Lawrence Dallaglio who proceeded to set up his picnic table!
At half time we caught up with some friends of mine who were sitting about 6 rows from us... pretty ironic in a crowd of 67,000. We had drinks back at the car where we caught up with Paul Sakey.. my friend Janet was beside herself!
and to finish it off Sarries beat London Irish (which was so not expected!)... a great day all round...

Friday, 4 September 2009

Today I've been mostly............


making this!.........
a friend of a friend is getting married tomorrow, so I've finished off her wedding cake today... bottom tier fruit, middle tier chocolate sponge, top tier vanilla sponge. The design is very simple but quite effective I think. The next challenge is to get it there in one piece!

I'm delivering it early morning and then heading over to Twickenham for the opening game of the Rugby premiership which is the double header. Sarries are playing London Irish and Quinns have got Wasps.... The whole afternoon of watching rugby thighs... I don't even care if it rains!

have a great evening ... Tudors for me tonight..... Tx

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Dreamboats & Petticoats

Tonight I took my mum & friend Chris to see Dreamboats & Petticoats for my mums birthday. We don't spend much time together my mum & I, so it was nice to go out and have some fun. I've been feeling quite low lately and this was a welcome pick me up........ set in 1961 to a backdrop of fantastic songs from the 50's in the local Youth Club and and a Day Trip to the Kursaal at Southend! When we got there, I found that our seats had been upgraded and we were 6 rows from the front in the stalls. By the end of the evening it doesn't matter where you are sitting as everyone was up twisting & jiving in the aisles. the cast are great with some fab new-comers making their west end debut and some familiar faces from soap land. The very yummy Ben Freeman, previously in Emmerdale as Scott Windsor plays chancer 'Norman'.. with a great voice and a six pack to lick ice-cream off! His on-screen mum sat in front of us with her mum!
If you get the opportunity to see this before it finishes in a few weeks I highly recommend it... plot line is very simple but the songs will have your hands clapping & your feet tapping!.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

the girls are back!......


roll on May 2010!........today on the streets of Manhattan outside the Met the cast and crew started filming Sex & the City 2!..........
How excited am I!!!!......
Carries's back in her trade mark killer heels... Gold sparkly Christian Louboutins, white dress, gold metal Chanel clutch & gold raybans wayfarers.. guess gold is in for the spring then!
Check out article here, no surprise that the plot line is a closely guarded secret, but speculation is already rumouring.. no wedding ring?... baby?... credit crunch?... I can't wait!... if your missing out on a NY fix... my tube read this week has been this, One Fifth Avenue ~ Candace Bushnell, creator of S&TC, a good read... welcome back Carrie....

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Ladies that Lunch....


Today I took a half day from work! (miracle in itself!!). My friend Karen met me, we had a leisurely lunch, lots of chatting and then a bit of shopping in Selfridges!...
yes I know i work there but so much happens in the store on a daily basis that it was lovely to bimble round, & browse. I saw lots of lovely things for Christmas, and it was great to view it from someone else's perspective. I forget what a fab shopping experience it is.....
we then finished the day off with a glass of wine before heading back into the suburbs after rush hour.
a Fab day had by both.....

Sunday, 27 September 2009

The de-clutter begins!

this year one of my resolutions was to create more of a home for myself, what with one thing and another (loosing Gramps) I haven't done anything about it.
My house needs some major re-decoration and a really good clear-out!... I can't put it off any longer, I have a colleague re-locating from Leicester to London and everyone thinks that my spare room would be an ideal re-location for a few months until she is settled. Having done the relocation thing I can empathise with her on how difficult it is, also the company would be welcome at the moment.... so a huge clear-out is required!
This challenge is big and time is limited so its all go at the moment... I can always remember my nan having a good clear out in Sept/Oct getting ready for the winter, so this is my Autumnal De-Clutter!
This recent read has also been inspirational.... A Spring Affair mmmm I hope that my 'skip' man is as yummy!
So my top tips for myself are:
Y Be Brave!
Y One Room at a Time
Y Make a Mess
Y Be Logical
Y Not All Clutter is Junk
Y Storage Solutions
Y Get Rid Feel Good
Y Relax........

Saturday, 26 September 2009

A New York moment............


This weekend saw the new release of FAME....this film was a huge inspiration to me, followed by the spin off tv series, remember this!

Fame started my love affair with New York, it was somewhere that i had to go, (especially as you got to dance on the top of yellow taxi!).. I wasn't even in my teens when this first hit but can remember being swept up into the whole Dance/Music school vibe.... jazz shoes & leg-warmers were a huge hit!

My love affair with New York continues on, and still my favourite place in the world. I won't get there this year but are planning for next year already!... in the mean time I have discovered The City which is the spin-off of The Hills... it is addictive, especially Olivia who is quite hideous. so this will ease my NY fix for the next few weeks. Also recently discovered is Lipstick Jungle this is written by Candace Bushnell writer of Sex & the City. Loved the book... series did not disappoint..especially the character of Kirby Oh my word... definitely candidate for Scrum of the Week!

This week sees me having an ugly betty moment.. I'm undecided on whether to cut a fringe into my hair, however I am worrying that i will look like Ugly Betty's mum in doing so!... watch this space!


Friday, 25 September 2009

Thank Crunchie its Friday!


that's how I feel today!........ work's been a little demanding the last couple of weeks, due to sickness & holidays and I'm shattered. A much needed cupcake fix was needed, so Honeycomb Cupcakes were made... accompanied by a little of Cadbury's finest..
Chocolate Honeycomb Cupcakes
(Makes 12)
Y 60g Butter, softened
Y 1/4 cup castor sugar
Y 1 tsp vanilla essence
Y 1 egg
Y 3/4 cup self raising flour
Y 1/4 cup milk
Y approx 75g or 1 cup of honeycomb crumbs
Icing ~ Icing sugar, Butter & vanilla essence - mix to required taste. Honeycomb square to decorate.
1. Pre-heat oven to 175' and line a 12 hole muffin pan with cupcake cases.
2. Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugar, then add vanilla and egg. Beat until well combined. Fold in half the flour and milk until mixture is smooth. Repeat with remaining flour and milk and stir until batter is smooth. Either chop or crush honeycomb and stir into batter. Three quarters fill each paper case with batter.
3. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then remove from oven. Leave cakes to cool in the pan for 10min and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
4. Spread icing on cupcakes. Sprinkle the cupcakes with either some leftover honeycomb crumbs or top with with a small chunk of honeycomb.

Eat with Hot Chocolate, topped with whipped cream & honeycomb crumbs..........

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

knit 1, purl 1....

the nights are drawing in, so perfect time for the knitting needles to come out!.... this year i'm spolit for choice crochet or knitting!!... mmm my friends complain that i'm a 'hermit' already as i'm a nightmare to get out! i've now got something else to keep me from venturing out!!!...
Tonight I made over a knitting pattern book of my nans, with some great papers from cosmo cricket and a stamp from hanglar....its full of old patterns which i love. They bring back lots of memories as my gramps knitted a lot for me when I was little.
I've also knitted a little bag to put my crocheting in, whilst i'm on the train in the morning!... granny squares are coming on!
Jane who I blogged about recently has listed some new workshops for October... check them out here.
It looks like she's caught the blogging bug too! I've booked to do the flower brooches... hopefully will see some of you there!
I have also discovered this amazing blog by Vanessa, who's crocheted scarf is so on my wish list.....a lovely bright funky blog. Kelly has also posted a knitting post, supporting this great cause and a worthy reason to get the knitting needles out!
This weeks train read is the fitting "The Knitting Circle" which i picked up in the charity shop this week...
Recipes of London Life has come back after its summer break.. check it out here.
have a great week... Tx

Monday, 21 September 2009

Cupcake Winners.....

Alas National Cupcake week has come to end... thankyou all for the lovely comments, I hope that you have enjoyed the week as much as me....
the final blog cupcake candy is:
Y Cupcake Book
Y 6" x 6" pack of the Nannas Kitchen papers (1 of each)
Y 1 pack of "Sweet" papers (postcard size)
Y selection of yummy cupcakes cases
Y 10 x Sweets & Treats cards & envelope (recipe included on each)
Y ~ collection of cupcake stamped images
Y ~ cupcake shopping list
Y ~ Cupcake Diary 2010
Y ~ Cupcake wrapping paper
Y ~ Cupcake Fizz Bomb
Inside the Cupcake Cookie jar are all the entries... and the winners is:
KELLY ~ Recipes of Life
I have a little runners-up gift for Mel, so email me your addresses and I will get them sent to you both... Enjoy!

Friday, 18 September 2009

National Cupcake Week Day 5 ~ Books to Eat


If there was the equivalent of an AA for books I would probably have to join it and confess that I am a book addict.
I can't remember ever not having my head in a book, this obviously spills over to Cupcake books as well! .... I'm a sucker for a gorgeous scrummy picture on the front, the yummier the better..... Here are a few of my favs, for either the recipe or just to devour the pictures.
Y The Hummingbird Bakery ~ a joy from cover to cover, both for the recipes and as a coffee table read.
Y Cake Chic - Peggy Porschen ~ any of Peggy's books are a must, the 'Christian Louboutin' of cakes!
Y Magnolia Bakery Cookbook ~ no cupcake devotee would be without a Magnolia. Sex & the City catapulted the cupcake to stardom and a trip to New York would be incomplete without a stop off at 401 Bleecker Street.
Y Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey ~ not a specific cupcake book, but a feast on the taste buds and a must for a sweet tooth!
Y Crabapple Bakery Cupcake Book ~ a real hidden gem. recipes are a joy and the names are sumptuous....
currently on my wish list is Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery..... it may just fall in the shopping basket this month!... the highlighted titles will take you to a detailed review & more pics, enjoy!
what's your favorite cupcake book?
ps.. the highlighted titles will take you to a detailed review & more pics, enjoy!

Thursday, 17 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 4 ~ Shopping List


great ingredients are key to making yummy cupcakes. If you are anything like me then you spend half your time in the supermarket wandering aimlessly up the aisle with a shopping trolley, having completely forgotten what you need!... well don't fear I have made a little Shopping List notebook which I will be adding to the pile of treats....
talking of shopping I have found a few goodies which I am coveting... i'm loving these bits from John Lewis, and i'm spolit for choice on all these goodies at Laura Ashley (fortunately they have just opened a gift store at Liverpool Street Station, so may just have to pop in!)... have a great day... treat yourself to a cupcake!
Tx
ps don't forget to tell all your blog friends of my little giveaway...

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 3.... A cupcake for all seasons.

Today I am posting 4 recipes to take us through the cupcake year... these are some of my favourites from tried & tested recipes.....

Spring ~ Hummingbird Cupcakes ...originated from Southern America and made famous in the Magnolia Bakery New York...

Summer ~ where would summer be without a refreshing Gin & Tonic in the garden!... these are delicious and always a big hit at dinner parties!....

Autumn... I was spoilt for choice on this one but the Baileys Cupcakes won through... these are particularly yummy accompanied by a Baileys Latte!.... the volume of Baileys in this recipe is conservative feel free to add an extra splash!

The final season is of course Winter, there are so many great recipes but I picked my Christmas Morning Cupcakes which are scrummy warm from the oven, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar or cold with cinnamon cream cheese icing!

....please click on cupcake name and this will take you to the recipe link...Enjoy!

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

National Cupcake Week day 2....Cupcake Challenge



To celebrate National Cupcake week I have made a card, and completed a challenge over at taylored expressions.... Taylor makes some fab Cupcake stamps.. check them out here.
.... I have been researching the history of the "Cupcake", there are 2 explanations for the name:

Y In the early 19th century, there were two different uses for the name "cup cake" or "cupcake". In previous centuries, before muffin tins were widely available, the cakes were often baked in individual pottery cups, ramekins, or molds and took their name from the cups they were baked in. This is the use of the name that has persisted, and the name of "cupcake" is now given to any small cake that is about the size of a teacup, alternatively the names origin came from the measurement or baking, where everything was measured in cups and not by weight.



Teresa x Y x

Monday, 14 September 2009

National Cupcake Week.... yummy treats


This week is national Cupcake week in the UK, so in honour of such a fab week I will be giving away a little cupcake themed parcel of goodies!....

As the week goes on I will be adding to the little pile and one lucky recipient will receive all the cupcake goodies. The giveaway will be open until Sunday 21st September. To be entered into the draw, please leave a comment and pop back during the week as I will be posting a daily cupcake entry in honour of the week!

All comments posted will be put into a large cupcake and one lucky recipient will receive the yummy treats!

These are the treats so far......
Y Cupcake Book
Y 6" x 6" pack of the Nannas Kitchen papers (1 of each)
Y 1 pack of "Sweet" papers (postcard size)
Y selection of yummy cupcakes cases
Y 10 x Sweets & Treats cards & envelope (recipe included on each)
Y Tuesday ~ collection of cupcake stamped images added...


Today whilst in sainsbury's i noticed that even they had got the cupcake bug!.....
featuring a fab article by the Queen of cupcakes herself Peggy Porschen, worth popping in a picking up a copy!

Teresa
XYX

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Crochet for Dummies!.........


i've been practising and look what i've made!!... I sat last night watching a film on TV and completed 2 squares. I was very excited, especially as I remembered what to do!.

AND... Look what I picked up in the charity shop on friday for the bargain price of 50p!... they were having a sale and all their books were half price!... Crochet for Dummies!

This will keep me occupied during the winter months, knitting & crocheting a throw for me so snuggle under on the sofa!


Saturday, 12 September 2009

Picnic in the Park!............

well not quite!.........the car park of Wembley Stadium. Today Saracens took on Northampton saints at Wembley Statdium. It's the first time that a Rugby match has taken place on the hollowed turf of wembley and what a fab day was had my all!.... in fact over 44,000 of us.
We arrived at Wembley at set up the picnic..... the weather was glorious and several other people had the same idea! After being fed and watered we entered the stadium.
It is a fantastic venue and bathed in the sunshine it looked glorious. There was entertainment on before the game which included a band called The Lightnings, Sarries 'v' Saints tug of war, and then Diversity (winners of Britains got Talent),
This was then followed by the Royal Marines who abseiled off the top of the stadium with the ball to start the game along with the Sarries mascot!

Game kicked off and it was thrilling... another nail biter for sarries with saints having a try disallowed 90 seconds from the end!....

we finished off the afternoon finishing off the picnic in the park!

Friday, 11 September 2009

Tea and Crafting.............

is how I spent my evening last night, learning to crochet Granny Squares!. Crochet is one of the few crafts that I didn't learn as a child... my Gramps was great at knitting, tapestry,and rug making, but he never mastered the art of crochet!...
I have had a hankering for some time to learn the basics, if only to make a square blanket for my old age! and I have coveted other bloggers crochet from afar... in particular Debbies blanket.
A couple of weeks I stumbled upon this site whilst eating my lunch at my desk.... Tea and Crafting
I contacted Jane and booked myself onto the Granny Squares. The venue is in Portland Place just down from the Landmark Hotel, which is a short walk from work. On arrival it turned out that it was just me, so I had 2hours of 1:1 tuition which was really great.

The evening started painfully for me, I am a bit of a perfectionist so the fact that I couldn't master chain stitch was a little frustrating, so the thought of completing a square by the end of the evening was a long and distant dream. Jane was lovely, really patient and a great teacher. After trying to crochet chain stitch I had to choose 3 lovely colours from this pile to make my square!... and we started, the first block was daunting, but ended up like this..... then suddenly after adding a second colour it all began to make sense!...
Then a third colour and suddenly i was on a roll!....... the evening drew to a close, and I left clutching some bundles of wall, a crochet hook and something resembling a Granny square!... I am pleased to say that I completed my square on the tube & train on the way home.

Here is my finished (other than darning off the loose ends) square!..... I did chuckle to myself on the train as I felt like one of the grannies knitting the shreddies in the Shreddie advert (this will be my friend Justine & I in a few years as the 'hot' conversation is daily whenever we are on the train together!!)
This was a great evening, I learnt a new craft and jane was lovely... a definite hit for anyone wanting to learn the basics... i've already tried to book on the crochet flower evening, but its full!...... Jane's posting some October dates soon...

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's...........

last night I went to see the first night preview of Breakfast at Tiffany's at the Haymarket Theatre in London. Anna Friel is staring as Holly Golightly, with this is mind I knew that it wasn't likely to be 'frothy'!.... As a warning to anyone who is thinking of going, if you Y the film and have never read the book, then this isn't for you.
This is a good adaptation of Truman Capotes book, which if you have read will know that its quite gritty and not glossed with Hollywood! (Truman hated the film and his estate are very strict on how his work is now adapted)
The other 'spoiler' is that Holly in the book is blonde, so Anna dons a blonde wig to play the role ..... she very much puts her style on the character and is not as ditsy as Audrey Hepburn. (Please don't think that I dislike the film or Audrey .. it is one of my favs, and she is great, but it is very different from the book).. what it does have is some lovely dresses worn by Miss Friel.
It is some time since I saw a play, I did enjoy it, i'm glad I went on my own, as you do have to concentrate as the narrative is quite fast. It is also quite long 3hrs in total, fortunately I'm learning that going to the theatre on your own you are more likely to be up-graded... so my £10 ticket saw me sitting in the £50 seats...bargain!!!... Overall a great adaptation of an iconic book, the set is very simple but incredibly effective, the cat comes very close to stealing the show.. worth a visit if only to see Joseph Cross (William/Fred) in the buff... a very pleasant surprise!... would I go again.. probably not, BUT I am really glad that I went.
On route to the opulent Haymarket, i did my own little piece of Tiffany browsing. The Old Bond Street store isn't anywhere near as iconic as the legendary 5th Avenue store but it is a beautiful building that still has the wow factor!....

Monday, 7 September 2009

The boys are back in town..........



Saturday saw the kick off of the 2009/10 Guinness Rugby Premiership... Sarries were at Twickenham for their opening game against London Irish in the Double Header. This is where the 4 London clubs all meet at Twickenham to play against each other.
Saracens 'v' London Irish and Harlequins 'v' Wasps.

There was obviously lots of testosterone flying around as there was several 'sin bins' fights and a red card 46 seconds into the harlequin & wasps game.... great fun all round!

We got to Twickenham about 1 hour & 45 minutes before the game which allowed us to park up adjacent to the ground and get the picnic table out, as we were setting up a range rover pulled up behind us with the number plate W4SPS.. and out jumped Lawrence Dallaglio who proceeded to set up his picnic table!
At half time we caught up with some friends of mine who were sitting about 6 rows from us... pretty ironic in a crowd of 67,000. We had drinks back at the car where we caught up with Paul Sakey.. my friend Janet was beside herself!
and to finish it off Sarries beat London Irish (which was so not expected!)... a great day all round...

Friday, 4 September 2009

Today I've been mostly............


making this!.........
a friend of a friend is getting married tomorrow, so I've finished off her wedding cake today... bottom tier fruit, middle tier chocolate sponge, top tier vanilla sponge. The design is very simple but quite effective I think. The next challenge is to get it there in one piece!

I'm delivering it early morning and then heading over to Twickenham for the opening game of the Rugby premiership which is the double header. Sarries are playing London Irish and Quinns have got Wasps.... The whole afternoon of watching rugby thighs... I don't even care if it rains!

have a great evening ... Tudors for me tonight..... Tx

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Dreamboats & Petticoats

Tonight I took my mum & friend Chris to see Dreamboats & Petticoats for my mums birthday. We don't spend much time together my mum & I, so it was nice to go out and have some fun. I've been feeling quite low lately and this was a welcome pick me up........ set in 1961 to a backdrop of fantastic songs from the 50's in the local Youth Club and and a Day Trip to the Kursaal at Southend! When we got there, I found that our seats had been upgraded and we were 6 rows from the front in the stalls. By the end of the evening it doesn't matter where you are sitting as everyone was up twisting & jiving in the aisles. the cast are great with some fab new-comers making their west end debut and some familiar faces from soap land. The very yummy Ben Freeman, previously in Emmerdale as Scott Windsor plays chancer 'Norman'.. with a great voice and a six pack to lick ice-cream off! His on-screen mum sat in front of us with her mum!
If you get the opportunity to see this before it finishes in a few weeks I highly recommend it... plot line is very simple but the songs will have your hands clapping & your feet tapping!.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

the girls are back!......


roll on May 2010!........today on the streets of Manhattan outside the Met the cast and crew started filming Sex & the City 2!..........
How excited am I!!!!......
Carries's back in her trade mark killer heels... Gold sparkly Christian Louboutins, white dress, gold metal Chanel clutch & gold raybans wayfarers.. guess gold is in for the spring then!
Check out article here, no surprise that the plot line is a closely guarded secret, but speculation is already rumouring.. no wedding ring?... baby?... credit crunch?... I can't wait!... if your missing out on a NY fix... my tube read this week has been this, One Fifth Avenue ~ Candace Bushnell, creator of S&TC, a good read... welcome back Carrie....