The Glitter Shoppe

13

September 22, 2014

I've got a treat for your Monday eyes, my lovelies! My pal Keely and I have been planning this post for weeks now, just waiting for the right time to spring all this party fab upon you. I'm so excited to have created this post in partnership with The Glitter Shoppe, and I'm just thrilled to have this beautiful Etsy store for a sponsor!

Keely, the owner and curator of The Glitter Shoppe's wares, is a buddy of mine whom I discovered on Pinterest. I've made some really great friends on Pinterest! She's always been a great supporter of my pinning activities and of my blog. So when she approached me about creating a post for her Etsy party supply store, and when I saw what she was stocking over there, my immediate response was OH YES. Let's do it!



I wish I wish I wish I had known about The Glitter Shoppe for any of my daughter's past 8 birthdays. Keely's goods are right up my alley, and if you're here reading my blog, I suspect that you'll share my views, if you have a fondness for pink, sparkle, and vintage-inspired party festivities!

If you need party supplies, The Glitter Shoppe has super unique items that you have to absolutely positively check out.

Case in point: little 'Madeline' capelets! I mean really. Have you ever?? These stopped me in my tracks when I first saw them.

Confetti washi tape! Oh how I love fun washi tape! And more varieties of glittery, colored clothespins than you can shake a stick at ~ perfect for holding banners, giftbags and place holders.

How great would candy cane spoons be for a holiday party this Christmas season? Or for hot chocolate gatherings? Pretty great I tell you, and I'm ordering some of these. My kid will flip.

My friends, I haven't even shown you one quarter of what's over there in The Glitter Shoppe. You need to go check it out, there's just cool item after cool item. Glitter-dusted pastry boxes! Victorian cameos and fancy doilies! From gift tags to fairy dust, there's a lot of party goodness to be had.

So go check out Keely's store and if you so fancy, you can check out The Glitter Shoppe on Facebook as well ~ I'm already a Facebook fan and there are always fun links to all kinds of party planning awesome! There. Didn't your day just get a little more festive?




Cool Stuff I Like

18

September 19, 2014

Happy Friday! I may, or may not, have caught my first snuffle of the season. It seems to be a tiny snuffle. More of a sniffle, if you will. Mostly I need to go to bed earlier. The other night I went to bed at 12:45, which is just wrong wrong wrong. But I had a good reason! I was nearing the end of  'The Magician's Land' and I have to say - I don't think I've ever read a trilogy before where each successive book kept getting better as the series went along! I was ENTHRALLED. I haven't had such fun with a book series in years and years. Big Love. Highest praise.


Let's get to all the other fab!

Thank you internets. This is the greatest thing I've ever seen ever.

Spooky classics for children CD. (yeah....it's happening. admire my restraint please, i basically wanted to begin talking about Halloween in August!) 

Homemade funfetti cake from Molly Yeh.

The anti-bucket list.

Have you seen my Autumn Pinterest board? I've been busily pinning new Autumnal nuggets o' awesome.

Hello, Wonderful is the coolest site!! I'd love to chat more about it with you, but I'm too busy pinning EVERYTHING from it.

If you liked this week's post about Blackberry Cobbler, please go back in time and take a peek at my Peach Cobbler post. There's still peaches out there waiting to be made into this cobbler!

MFAMB's fall interpretation. She's spot on, as usual.

You can do amazing things to treats with whipped cream....

What a darling unicorn book!


Cool Book of the Week: Well my girl Lainey loves it. Entertainment Weekly looooooves it. Amazon peeps love it. There appears to be nothing but love, so I'm already sold on 'I'll Give You the Sun' by Jandy Nelson. I love my YA fiction! Boy-girl fraternal teen twins Noah and Jude are crazy intense kids ~ Noah tells the story from the ages of 13-14 and Jude picks up the story from ages 16 to 17. There appears to be a Tragic Event of some kind that rips apart the once totally close siblings.

Every review I've read indicates that this is one of those books that reaches into your Place of Feelings, and twists/punches/kicks it around in an awesome way, and leaves you limp on the floor when it's done. Well, sign me up for some of THAT! I wonder how long the hold list is at the library....I was #94 for 'The Magician's Land' and I was like, ^%#@$ this, and I bought the book instead.

Have a lovely weekend! Let's hope that my sniffle stays at the low simmer it's at right now.

~Melissa





Books from Magic Cabin

6

September 18, 2014

Oh friends! I'm sorry that I haven't been lovingly photographing as many of our books for you lately. Fall time is basically the busiest time of the year for photography and I'm trying to finish several sessions at once and I'm sloooooow as molasses, all the while attempting to keep up with Julia's after school schedule. But I'm here! And I want to keep showing you books!

Are you familiar with the site Magic Cabin? I want to live in their catalog and ever since Julia was a baby, I comb all over that site to see their newest seasonal offerings. And they have a GREAT book section, with fabulous versions of classics, off-the-beaten-path offerings like Sibylle von Olfers and Elsa Beskow, as well as darling picturebooks (old and new) and fun holiday picks.

I'm not going to link to each individual book, because, again, time is kicking me in the behind these days, but head on over and check out their book section! Everything on the Magic Cabin site is just gorgeous. They aren't sponsoring me (I WISH), I just really really am a fan of their products!




Blackberry Cobbler

10

September 16, 2014

I make one blackberry cobbler a year. Just one. I've been tasting blackberries all summer long and I kept rejecting them as Not Good Enough ~ blackberries truly are a late-summer fruit! A week ago, I finally happened upon a batch of blackberries at the store that tasted like a blackberry should taste. Sweet and puckery at the same time.

My cobbler recipe comes from the only dessert book I ever use, pretty much. 'Country Desserts' by Lee Bailey. I've mentioned it over and over and over on the blog. It's an out of print book that is SO worth seeking out. It's glorious, with beautiful pictures, and it's just the type of cookbook that deserves to be in your family forever.

I've been meaning to write a Top 5 Favorite Cookbooks post for ages and ages now! This book is in my Top 5.


Which isn't to say that I slavishly follow every recipe to the letter. If Mr. Lee Bailey were in front of me right now (sadly, I believe he has passed away) I would have a debate with him on the issue of using flour as a thickening agent.

Yes, this is an issue.

He thinks so too, and goes on at great length upon the matter, deciding in favor of.....no thickening agent.

He just doesn't like it. He likes juicy pies and cobblers and he likes the purity of the ingredients without flour.

I HAVE TO DISAGREE. I've made this recipe without flour and I kid you not, the thing was swimming in 2 cups of blackberry juice. Once I poured out nearly all of the juice, it was awesome, but I was also losing sugar by pouring out all of that juice.

I just don't like my pies and cobblers overflowing with juice. I like the pieces to hold together somewhat. I don't think it needs to have too much thickener, but I do think the dessert does not benefit from drowning in juice.

So......it's really up to you I guess. You can leave out the flour, but things are going to be messy. I would put in a few tablespoons of flour to give some body to the juices and hold things together somewhat.

I respect Mr. Lee Bailey with all of my heart but I part ways with him on this Very Important Topic. Another note: my husband loves crust. LOOOOOOOOOVES it. So I doubled the crust recipe (that's a LOT of butter, yo!), but it's not really needed, I don't think. The crust recipe as it's laid out in the book is really grand and I personally think it makes enough crust. It's supposed to be a fruit dessert, not a crust dessert.

I should just make crust and spread jam on it, that would make Mr. Andrew super happy. I did double the crust for the cobbler you see in these photos.

BLACKBERRY COBBLER (adapted from 'Country Desserts' by Lee Bailey)

Ingredients for Pastry Dough:

1 and 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
scant 1/4 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening, frozen
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, frozen (i cut the butter and shortening into cubes and bits, and then stick them into the freezer on a plate for 10-15 minutes.)
4-5 tablespoons ice water

(the entire recipe for the pastry can be doubled, if you like a LOT of crust)

Ingredients for the Fruit Filling:

6 cups fresh blackberries, washed and drained
3/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into bits
sugar for sprinkling, or crushed sugar cubes
whipped cream or ice cream

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Have ready a 9-inch round ovenproof dish that is 2 or more inches deep.

Combine the flour, salt, and frozen shortening and butter in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process until the mixture is rough textured. Add the water slowly, and process until the dough begins to cling together. Gather into a ball and place between 2 sheets of wax paper, flattening the ball slightly. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Roll the dough out on a floured surface into a large ragged circle about 15 inches in diameter. Then roll the dough up onto a rolling pin and unroll the crust over the baking dish and line the bottom and sides, allowing the excess crust to drape over the edge. Mix the sugar and flour into the berries, let sit for 5 minutes. Mound the fruit mixture into the crust and dot with butter pieces. Bring the pastry crust up over berries; it won't quite cover the fruit, but use any pieces that have fallen off to patch. Sprinkle the top of the dough with a bit more extra sugar or some crushed sugar cubes over the top.

Bake for 45 minutes, or until the crust is brown and the filling is bubbling. Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.

Serves 6-8.

It's great cold too, and I would chill it in the fridge if you have leftovers, so that the crust doesn't turn mushy. Lee Bailey's believes in tender crusts and they are really the best, but you gotta eat them quickly or refrigerate the leftovers.

There is something so....seasonal, late-summery, and old fashioned charming about this dessert! I like to pour cream over it as well. Cream or ice cream with the tartness of blackberries is TRULY MAGICAL.




Cool Stuff I Like

21

September 12, 2014

Happy Friday!! Are you all feeling SEPTEMBERY?? I love September! And October! I don't really love November! I do love December! I'd like to like January because it sounds pretty and my birthday is in it. But January in the Pacific Northwest is a big pile of poop. (My daughter is going to yell at me for using potty talk.) I'm happy for this weekend because we don't have a lot planned, and I just got my new October Martha Stewart magazine, and my pal Shannon told me that 'Gilmore Girls' is coming to Netflix!!!! I am SO ready to watch that whole show again from the beginning.


Many cool things for us to take a gander at this week:

Tiny snacks.

Best books about Fall.

You gotta check out Monkeybar Buddies -- play shorts for wearing underneath little girl dresses!

8 New Baking Cookbooks.

Mix-in-the-pan apple crisp bars. 

Ok 'The Riot Club' just jumped to the top of my Must See list. Secret societies and hot preppy English dudes? This is better than my East Coast prep school obsession!

OH HOW I LOVE a nice ticking stripe pattern! My default mode of bedding is always ticking stripe. I have flannel ticking stripe for winter and cotton ticking stripe on my bed right now.

My friend Darcy is such an AMAZING photographer and she just launched her photo website. You have to go see! I'm so in love with her work.

Brilliant book list: 12+ books for kids not ready for Harry Potter.

Super cute homework station.

Dear girls, life is too short for crappy friends. #truth

Sweet Paul Fall.


Cool Book of the Week: Another newly published book of 'lost' Dr. Seuss stories!! 'Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories'. I'm getting this immediately for my toddler nephew!!!! The Grinch is in it! Horton the elephant! I just realized I have totally overused exclamation points in this post. You can read more about it here.

Have a lovely weekend ~ you might think that I don't REALLY want to hear about what you're doing/watching/eating this weekend, but I really really do. So tell me! :)

~Melissa




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