Monday, September 29, 2008

Here’s What’s Cooking! Today’s Projects

My husband asked me what I do all day (boy is it tempting to say sit around and eat bon bons!)…….. Well, besides taking care of a 14 month old and a rotten dog, today’s projects include packaging my homemade kid’s watercolors (they are drying as we speak!), rolling and cutting out gingerbread ornaments and then baking them, painting the living room, doing the boy’s laundry and hopefully running out to the store to get the baby food and his daddy lunches for work. That’s what I can think of, God knows other things always show up when they aren’t planned for!

watercolor artist palette

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Phew!16 Pounds of Play Dough!

I’ve been MIA because of a large order of play dough I had to get out in a week. As we speak, 16 pounds of fairy dust play dough are making their way across the country enroute to Beverly Hills for a very lucky little girl’s 3rd birthday party! And my arms are tired!!! (HA HA! Not because I’m flying it there!!) I made 11 batches of play dough in 4 days and then glitterized it and stuffed it into 40 tubs. (My little one glitterized himself and the living room! Guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree!) I thought the labels would be the most tedious part but they weren’t, it was the color blending! Even the glitter part and stuffing play dough into tubs wasn’t as bad!

Ay Carumba!

At least now I know. But it was fun. And I got to spend the week in the kitchen for the most part, the rest of the house is a mess but…..;o)

Friday, September 19, 2008

Same Blog, New Host!

I'm thinking about moving this entire blog over to wordpress. I've already imported this blog over and have been posting to both but this one doesn't seem to be drawing traffic as much as the wordpress one.

That said...check it out and let me know what you think!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Homemade Chicken Soup

There is a chill in the air and I had the urge to make my first pot of chicken soup for the year(for some reason my year runs from my birthday in August (23) until the following August, I think it is a school year thing!!) Anyway, every year I make about 2 or 3 pots of Chicken Soup. I separate out portions and freeze them as chicken soup, stock and chicken and dumpling starter(I add corn and peas to the soup before freezing). Then throughout the season, I pull out what I need and voila, relatively instant yumminess!


1 roasting chicken( and extra backs for more flavor, optional)
bunch of parsley
handful of carrots
celery stalks(the inner leaves are very good for a flavorful stock)

sea salt

Clean chicken with lemon juice or vinegar, rinse off well(don't forget to take the giblets out of the chest cavity!). Place chicken in largest stock pot available. Add celery stalks, carrots, onions, turnips and part of parsley. I generally put a few veggies under the chicken and then spread the rest around and on top. Add part of the parsley early for flavor and then add fresh at the end for color. Add some sea salt and a handful of peppercorns. Add water to cover (in my stock pot it's about 4 l.(16 c.)) Turn heat on high and bring pot to a boil. Skim off foam(you'll know it when you see it and your broth won't be clear if you skip this step).
Reduce heat and let simmer until chicken is cooked through(the meat will generally fall off the bone easily).Add potatoes about 30 minutes before finished(usually about an hour and a half in) Separate the cooked chicken and vegetables in bowls and strain the broth. Chop and add the rest of the parsley. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Take chicken off the bone and chop up vegetables. Put back in broth. Serve with rice or noodles. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 14, 2008



(shipping excluded)

Friday, September 12, 2008

OH BOY! It's Going To Be One Of THOSE Days!

The wee tot has only been up for an hour and this is what he has already accomplished!
[BTW: The living room was spotless when he woke up!]

Thursday, September 11, 2008

new flowers in my garden

Photos of my first year Phlox and Crocosmia. I'm very pleasantly surprised with both. So pretty!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

emma's bears

Have you ever looked at an artist's work and just knew you'd like the person who made it?
That's how I felt about Emma's Bears. The first time I saw the soulful eyes and sweet faces, I just knew that this talented artisan would be someone I'd like to meet someday. In the meantime, I will share her work with you and pine away for one of her sweet bears for my sweet son.

Christmas Gift Wrap!

My shops new Christmas wrap!

Of course, my son found the empty box to be the most fascinating of play toys!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

I love new play dough day!!

About every other week I make a batch of play dough so I can play with my new kit ideas. This week was CAMO for boys and fairy dust for girls! There is something therapeutic about being in the kitchen whether it is because I’m baking or fixing dinner or making play dough, if I can go in there for a short time uninterrupted, I come out feeling revived! So this time while I played in my kitchen, my little bug played in his pack n play in the doorway between the kitchen and the dining room! I am truly blessed to have the little critter I do!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Where the name 'busy little elf' came from

We recently had a post on our CafeMom Etsy mom forum asking where we came up with our business names and thought I would share my answer here on the blog. (Just in case you ever wondered!) Here was my response:

I was working in retail at Christmas. Something I had done for 20 years but this time I was a manager at a MediaPlay that was liquidating.Working for a store that was going out of business was something I had never experienced and at Christmas, I think an even worse experience. I watched people grasping for anything they could buy cheaply so that their kids could be indulged at the holiday while all the kids that worked for me were faced with losing their jobs. At one of the absolute lowest points in my career, I had an idea for a book about a jaded Christmas elf who wonders if it is all worth it. So The name"Busy Little Elf" is the working title for that book, I had to shelf the idea for a little while since I proceeded to get pregnant and moved shortly after starting it. I decided to use it as my business name, especially since my long range plan involves a family friendly Christmas tree farm and spectacle(holiday activities, sleigh rides, window displays,etc.).