Sunday, November 28, 2010

Special Guest

A few posts ago, I posted about a cookie cake that Mr. Tea Rose Home made for our son's birthday party. So many people asked for the recipe that I asked Mr. Tea Rose Home if he would be interested in doing a guest post. He gladly accepted. So enjoy the recipe tutorial!

Hello ladies! Thanks for all the compliments on the cookies. I told Mrs. Tea Rose Home that I could write a post about how I make my cookies. She said, "Why, can't we just post the recipe?"

I jokingly replied, "Well, then we could write: It's on the back of NestlĂ©’s. The End."

So, there is my secret, the recipe is on the back of NestlĂ©’s Toll House Chocolate chips, however, that is not all. There is one thing that I learned over the years and it's not on the back of some bag. So without further ado, here is the recipe:

2 1/4 C. flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
2 Sticks Butter
3/4 C. sugar
3/4 C. packed brown sugar
1 tsp Vanilla extract
2 Large Eggs

I use a KitchenAid mixer, and I always make the cookies in this order following these steps. This is why they turn out so good, and since I know of no one that makes them like this (because they've said so) it has got to be done this way.

Put the butter (Use the real stuff, no margarine; I use either salted or unsalted sweet cream. I haven't made two batches side by side to see if there is a real difference. When I make a double batch, I'll mix them.), sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and eggs into the mixing bowl. Raise it up and turn the KitchenAid on to its lowest setting. Clean up (you don't have to clean; I'm just trying to keep the KitchenAid on longer.)

Mix the other ingredients into a separate bowl. Really you are supposed to sift those ingredients, but we either don't have one or I'm too lazy to find it, so I just put them in a bowl and lightly mix with a wire whisk.

This whole time the KitchenAid should still be mixing. You might have to stop it to get the butter clump off the mixing arm then start mixing it again. I will sometimes speed up the kitchen aid and lower the bowl to shake some of the mixture off and slow the KitchenAid down and raise the bowl back.

If the dough looks like this, you haven't mixed it enough, keep mixing. Go watch TV with the kids or something, depending on how cold or solid the butter was; this could take some time.

This is what the batter should look like, nice white and fluffy. No lumps from the butter or sugar. Now what I do is add about a tablespoon of the flour mixture in at a time. While the KitchenAid is mixing at its lowest setting, I'll add a scoop of flour and wait for it to get totally mixed in before adding another. This keeps the flour from clumping. Maybe you can just pour it all in and be done with it, but my cookies always turn out perfect if I do 1 heaping tablespoon at a time.

Once all the flour is mixed in, turn the oven on to 375°. Keep the KitchenAid going for several more minutes, and then turn it off. The dough should be delicious; yes, me and my kids love to eat the dough. Anyways, remove the mixing bowl from the KitchenAid and pour in the chips. When making a double batch, I mix in milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate. Mix with a spatula; be sure to dig in and pull the dough from the bottom and get a good even spread of chips throughout the dough.

For the cookie “cake”, I made a double batch and then scooped most of it into the pan and spread it out as much and I could. I think the dough was somewhere from a 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch thick, I'm not sure, I didn't measure. Either way, with cookies, you are supposed to cook for 9 to 11 minutes. I like my cookies doughy and gooey, so I go for 8 1/2 minutes (I use teaspoons to scoop out individual cookies.)

With the cookie “cake”, I cooked it for 9 minutes and that was too short, so back in for another 4 minutes... still not enough; 4 more seemed to do it; there was a nice light golden brown starting to form on the edges, it was done. Nice soft moist gooey cookies... mmmm.... Great with milk!

They were almost all gone by the end of the party.

Well ladies… that was it. The KitchenAid was nice and warm from all the work, I must have mixed for 30 minutes or more but that is my secret. Keep mixing and then mix some more.

I hope this recipe tutorial will be helpful for you to make the cookie "cake". Thank you Honey for the special guest appearance!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Giveaway Winner!

Hi all! How was your Thanksgiving? I posted the winners for the Thanksgiving giveaway If you are not one of the winners, don't be sad. :) I will be doing another giveaway in the near future by CSN Stores. CSN Stores have over 1 million products on their site, toys to tv tables. It is fun to browse, and you might find the perfect gift for your loved ones just at your fingertips!

I am going to decorate the house for Christmas tomorrow with kids’ help (?) and with Christmas music on. Doesn't that sound fun? I hope you all are having a wonderful weekend.

Visit my Sponsors' Page to see if you are one of the lucky winners! I will see you on Monday!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


First of all, I want to thank all of you who participated in the Thanksgiving giveaway! I read all the "Blessings" in your lives, and they are amazing. Many people are grateful for their spouses, children and friends. Also, there are quite a few people who were able to find something to be thankful for in difficult circumstances. Thank you so much for sharing your stories, and for being an inspiration.

I have so much to be thankful for. Sure, life gets crazy sometimes; I have locked myself in the bathroom for about 5 minute or so to get a moment of Zen in the past (it happens less frequently now). There are ups and downs and meltdowns too.

But I know I have FAR MORE blessings than I can count and far more than those difficult times. Let me share some of the blessings I recognized this year...

I am thankful for "cause" and "effect". Along the way, I always learn something...

I am thankful for ENTHUSIASM. It reminds me that I should be excited about the little things and enjoy the moment...

Although, I am thankful for stillness too. When I take time to do so, I can see the sweet and wonderful things in my life more clearly...

I am thankful for INDIVIDUALITY that makes us unique and makes the world an interesting place to live in.

I am thankful for LOVE and LAUGHTHER; they truly strengthen and enrich my life.

I am thankful for HOPES & POSSIBILITIES. They keep me going through the tough times. I will look ahead and wonder about the possibilities, and hope for the best.

Above all, I am thankful for the Gospel and our Lord Jesus Christ. They glue us together as a family and show us how to live in these uncertain times.

I hope everyone will have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Note: These wonderful pictures were taken by my friend, Michelle. She is an awesome photographer. Please go check out her blog.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Tutorial ~ Indoor Frisbee ~

Usually, I share lots of ruffly, romantic and girly items on my blog, but get this...

I had two boys first (and boy they have been active and busy ever since they were toddlers!!) so I know what it's like to raise and entertain busy, energetic boys (oh, did I say that again?). So, I decided to share something geared towards them today. :)

When my boys were a lot younger, it was a bit tricky to entertain them on rainy, snowy or cold days. You can't go to the park, but they had tons of energy to burn off. (How come we mommies can’t take some of that for ourselves?) One of the things we did was to play Frisbee. At first we used a regular Frisbee, but in small spaces, it doesn't work very well. You have to be super careful not to throw it too hard or too far, otherwise you could hurt someone, or knock over one of us mommies’ precious decorations! One day I found a fabric Frisbee at the dollar store, and it was awesome! We used it all the time and we didn't have to worry about anything. You can pick your favorite fabrics and make a few to have a Frisbee tag war! Here is what I did;

{You will need}

9" X 9" two different fabrics for front and back
Batting (I used thin cotton batting that I had, but I made it two layers thick and was perfect)
Matching thread

{How to}

1. Lay front and back fabrics together with right sides. Trace the circle, and cut. Do the same with the batting. I used 8"diameter mouse pad, but you can use anything around the house.

2. Pin the batting with fabrics (still right sides together).

3. Leaving a 3"opening, sew all around the circle with 1/4" seam. Turn, whip stitch closed.

4. After pressing the edge with iron, trace the inner circle(5"diameter) and sew to stabilize the batting.

This will make a perfect stocking stuffer and party favors for birthday parties.

My kids love to play with this Frisbee! It is so easy, inexpensive to make and provides hours of fun play time.

Note: I am taking a break from the link party for this week too. If you haven't entered for a chance to win something from the Thanksgiving Giveaway. Please do so!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Birthday Party & Giant Cookie Cake

We had a birthday party for our oldest child today... I can't believe he is already 10 years old, two digits! It is a big deal, and I was all for baking a special cake for him.

Then, he said, "I want a giant chocolate chip cookie for my birthday instead of a cake".

OK then.

There is something you don't know... in our household, Mr. Tea Rose Home bakes the best chocolate chip cookies EVER. He usually doesn't cook, but there are a couple of things he can make well and one of them is chocolate chip cookies.

And, he did it. He baked a yummy, gigantic chocolate chip cookie last night and it was a big hit!

There were nine kids running around our house (there was only one girl, yup, you guessed it, it was Rachel...) during the party. We all had a great time!

I hope someday he will look back on this day and say, "Oh, I remember the big cookie dad made for me...". Working hard all day and then came home to bake a cookie takes effort, our kids are so blessed to have a daddy who cares and loves them. A day like today makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Friday, November 19, 2010

T-Shirt + Legging Makeover for a Little Girl

Note: Don't forget to enter for the Thanksgiving giveaway!

Couple weeks ago, I was guest posting at Sew Dang Cute. I will post the tutorial I did here today, just in case anybody missed it. This is a really fun repurpose project, especially, if your child outgrows a few clothes so fast that the cloth still looks new, but too small to wear them as is. :)

My little girl used to wear a t-shirt and leggings like this... but the leggings are too tight now, and the t-shirt works ok for now, but by next summer, it will be too small for her. I decided to combine them together, and make something for this fall & winter. Here are the steps that I followed...

1. I used one of her 5T t-shirts as a sample to measure how long I needed for the sleeves and made the cut.

2. The legging was wider than the opening of the sleeves of the shirt. I had to sew the side of the sleeves to match the opening of the shirt.

3. Pin the long sleeve to the t-shirt. Sew, Turn.

4. I wanted to make a hat with the leftover fabric, but my little girl strongly resisted and said "I don't want to wear my butt!", I decided to accessorize the shirt.

5. Cut 3 - 1" X 7" strips. Using the largest setting for stitches sew in the middle of the strips. Pull one thread to make ruffles.

6. Sew a ruffle in the middle of the t-shirt. Repeat the process and add ruffles on the both sides. I added decorative trims between the ruffles.

We did a photo shoot in the nice sunny fall weather. She loved the shirt (she didn't have to wear her butt, so that made her even happier), the shirt was perfect. :)

When I think about the possibilities, I have hard time throwing old clothes away. I have a pile of out grown kids clothes sitting here in my sewing room taking up some precious space... I hope I can introduce "REBORN" clothes in a future post.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Thanksgiving Giveaway 2010!

I've had to move my giveaway to my Sponsors' Page, all comments here and there will be counted. Please go here to read about the contest and to enter.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Link Love No.31 and Couple Announcements

Hi everyone, before start the link love, I have a couple announcements.
First, I have a couple new sponsors, Sew Chatty and Pink Lemonade! Head over to their shops to see their wonderful creations. In near the future, I am hosting their giveaways; so don't miss it!

The second announcement... This week, I am going to take a break from the regular link party. Oh, don't get disappointed, instead, I am doing a special "Thanksgiving giveaway" post. Last year I did a Thanksgiving giveaway too, and here is how it works: instead of normal comments, I asked people to tell us what you are thankful for. (You can read last years post and comments here.) I recieved tons of responses, and they were all so nice and sometimes very personal. Reading them made me realize how much we are blessed in many ways, and made Thanksgiving even more special.

So, I am doing the same thing this year. One of my generous sponsors M&J Trimming will be giving away an awesome prize for Tea Rose Home readers too!(I am not telling what it is yet). So, start think about what you have been blessed with and come join the party!

Now, I am ready to I share this week's LOVE...

Check out these onesies by Dressing Heidi Sage! I love these onesies, a monster and letter b. The stitches around the "b" gives more charactor to it.

Decor Allure found these Asian style chairs at a garage sale (multi million dollar home... I wish I could find that kind of garage sale!). With a little paint and new fabric, she made them into one of a kind beautiful chairs!

Have you all ready decorated the house for Thanksgiving? Just Between Friends shared these pretty wooden blocks which hold candles and the tutorial for them. Once you know how to make it, you can always change the letters to anything you want. Thank you for sharing!

Ok, this is a little different than I normaly pick, but I couldn't help it! Check this out, Lilybug Designs made this; it is the cutest FISH HAT! My kids were giggling when they saw the hat. So creative and well skilled.

This is going in to my "Things to make" list. This Vinyle and paper card wallet is shared by Leafy Tree Top Spot. Her step by step tutorial will tell you exactly what to do to create this. I love projects like this, simple, cute, and eye opening.

Thank you for visiting everyone, and see you at the next post! :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Guest Post at I am Momma Hear Me Roar!


Cheri over at I am Momma Hear Me Roar asked me to be her guest blogger for her Refashionista week a while ago. I am posting a fun refashion project, head over to check out her amazing blog!

A little sneak picture...


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Link Party No.31, and I am going to bed early...

Hi everyone. As you can tell from the title, I am a little bit under the weather. Last week one of my sons got sick and had a high fever for few days. After I took him to the doctor and got medicine, he was getting better. Then, my other son got a stomach bug on the weekend, while my daughter started coughing... guess who is taking care of them most of the time (not to mention, eating their leftovers off their plates sometimes... not knowing that they were coming down with something...)

All day long, I had joint aches, cold chills and headaches. So, my friends, I am off to bed.
I have been working on other projects that I want to share soon; it depends on how I feel in the next few days. Meanwhile, please link up, visit each other and have fun!

1. Please post something YOU made. It doesn't matter if it is crochet, quilt, clothing, anything would be fine. I want to see it! If you use someone's idea or patterns please give them the rightful credit.

2. Link to your specific post, that way it is easier for everybody to find and read it.

3. Please grab the "Tea Rose Home" grab button, and link back from your post. If you can mention the party in your post or place the button on your side bar, that would be great! I want more people to have a chance to come and show off their creation.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Link Love No.30!

There are many things that I love about fall & winter. One of them is drinking warm drinks. I love herb tea, apple cider, cocoa with homemade whipped cream... It is such a treat taking the time for myself to do stuff (such as reading, sewing or going over the link party!) with my favorite drink, in my favorite mug.

How about you? Do you have your "favorite" for fall?

Well, here are the five picks for this week, enjoy!

Sneezerville was inspired to make this over skirt when she was browsing one of the Etsy shops. She tweaked it here and there and made such a unique and fun over skirt. Looks like it is very versatile too!

Check out this Boy's Flannel Scarf with Treasure Pocket over at Living with Punks! I like the simple-ness of the scarf and the treasure pocket makes this very special and fun! My boys would love this too.

Living with Punks had another link that I LOVED. Check out this Mama Ruffle Scarf! I have wanted to incorporate some animal prints into my outfit this fall, but I wasn't sure if it was for me. Something like this will be a great way to try an "in-style" item.

This anthropology inspired necklace was linked by Little Treasures. She used organza and silver taffeta to make this, and I really love the color combination. "Moonlight flowers necklace" is the perfect name for it!

The last link is a very useful tutorial shared by Mummy Crafts. She used waste canvas to create this pretty Baby Singlet. I have done some cross stitching before, but not with this method. I sure want to give it a try. Thank you for sharing!

Thank you very much everyone for participating! Happy creating! :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Multi-Purpose Necklace Set

I have been inspired by the beautiful fall colors lately. Usually, I love white, ivory pearls, but I have decided go for a slightly darker pearl paired up with a copper chain to make my necklace. Also, I love things that are versatile (well... sometimes I am so indecisive; I like to keep my options open). Then, I came up with this multi-purpose necklace.

There are three parts. The main necklace: large pearls with copper chain, smaller pearl necklace: that can be used as a choker, but also, it can attach to the main necklace. Then, the corsage; this can be used by itself, or attached to the necklaces.

The main necklace...

Pearl attached to main necklace...


All the parts put together...

Also, I wanted to make sure that the necklace will go with black...thanks to my loving husband, we did a fun photo shoot one afternoon.

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