Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Sweet Baby Rays Brisket Pizza

My daughter Brittany is a master at using left overs. 
This brisket pizza was a delicious treat!

Sweet Baby Rays Brisket Pizza

White Flour Pizza Crust

2c. warm water
2Tbsp olive oil
5 tsp yeast
1Tbsp sugar
Stir well, let rest for about 5 min. till bubbling

2 tsp salt
4 1/2 to 5 cups flour
Mix into liquid until combined and not too sticky
Roll out on pizza pan. 

Brisket topping

3/4 cup of Sweet Baby Rays bar-b-que sauce
1/2 marinara sauce
Spread over pizza crust

Mix together:
3/4 cup swiss cheese-shredded
3/4 cup mozerella cheese-shredded
Sprinkle over sauce

1-1 1/2 cups of brisket- cooked & chopped
3/4 cup corn (we cut it off of left-over corn on the cob)
1/3 cup bar-b-que sauce
Mix well and spoon onto pizza

Top with:
1 small red onion- thinly sliced

Bake 375 for 16-22 minutes
until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Decoupage & a vintage suitcase

I had a lovely group of ladies at the cottage this past weekend. Serious scrappers and antique fanatics, they had some unique and creative projects, as well as beautiful scrapbook pages. 

I love the old suitcases covered with paper & Mod Podge! The ladies pick up these cute cases at antique shops and then just layer, and layer, and layer the paper in different dimensions for embellished scenes...adorable!

This is the beginning

These suitcases are a fun way to set up and store scrapbook supplies

These girls were 2 table girls...the kind that bring a boat load of stuff with them:) 
Below are some of their layouts in progress.

One of my most favorite things about having a retreat cottage is looking at all the beautiful projects created at the cottage! Thank you ladies.

p.s. I love your group name... the Paper Dolls!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Her name was Helen

 She was my aunt, my mother's oldest sister, my grandmother Nellie's oldest child. She was my number one Nellie's Cottage fan, and was so excited I was restoring the old family home. I will miss her.
   Born in 1923, she was a teenager during the depression when they lost their home and had to move to a garage with dirt floors. I can only imagine my children doing such a thing!
Helen at her home (Nellie's Cottage) about 1939

Aunt Helen (right) with her best friend at high school graduation 1941
Look at that TINY waist!

She was 27 when she married, a war bride who spent the next 2 years praying her husband home from war. She was 20 years older than my mom, more a mother than a sister, and so she was more a grandmother to me than an aunt.
   Aunt Helen survived the loss her of youngest child who was only 14. She lived through the depression and several wars. She built a house, she was a bookkeeper, extremely thrifty, and she loved watching baseball:) She could cut a piece of a plant stick it in the ground and it would grow into a beautiful new plant. I did not inherit that ability:(
   My Uncle Leonard was wholly devoted to her for 61 years and feels her absence most keenly. As she was battling cancer, she was so gracious to those who cared for her, expressing gratitude for the tiniest service.
   I am so glad I had the chance to get to know her better in the last few years. I saw the twinkle in her eye as she told about how immature she thought Uncle Leonard was while they were growing up. I saw her face light up at she remembered and sang for me a childhood song. I saw the excitement in her face as she began to see the restoration of Nellie's Cottage. I saw the gratitude in her heart every time I made the small effort to visit her. 
Aunt Helen & Uncle Leonard with their grandchildren
Aunt Helen is telling the family about how the family started a new
life after the depression and how Nellie's Cottage came to be
Holding my grandbaby Annabelle
My Aunt Helen was the essence of a sweet Southern woman. She lived 88 years on this earth, truly a life well lived. I wonder if we ever really realize how much we take out loved ones for granted until they are gone. She loved her family, was kind to all, and I knew she loved me and in the end that is all that really matters.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Blissful Bites

Christmas in July is always a good idea especially when it involves superb deliciousness in the shape of a cupcake. We had our annual Nellie's Cottage Christmas in July event last week and over 100 cupcakes went out the door, not including the ones I personally tasted:) My daughter Brittany launched her gourmet cupcake bakery "Blissful Bites"

She had a beautiful display, creatively using decorative items scattered around my home. I especially like the shiny and shimmery fabric stuffed inside glass vases for pedestals, genius!...not to mention my bracelet around the candle, and Christmas balls inside a wedding box used for gift envelopes. 

The cupcakes lived up to their blissful name with comments such as "This is the best cupcake I have EVER tasted". Sounds of ummmm, ohhhhhh, and wooooowww, filled the cottage as guests tasted the cupcakes. My personal favorite of the day was key lime pie, and reeses, and lemon blackberry, and is too hard to choose:)

Cupcakes were packaged in an adorable way for guests in a hurry! Too many of us are in a hurry...guilty says I:)

I am not sure how I feel about this bakery residing in my home. How can I possibly be expected to refuse to be a taste tester? Supporting my children in all of their endeavors has been a way of life for me. Sadly, not even my imminent 30 year class reunion was incentive enough NOT to eat the last remaining key lime cupcake on display..... I should probably keep my treadmill as it is at the moment...stuck on number 9 incline!

p.s. Congrats baby girl, I feel like all of those times when my kitchen was a complete disaster after Christmas cookie decorating when you were a little girl have all been vindicated for NOW not only can you can clean up your own mess but best of all you have your very own little mess maker:)

Visit Brittany's new website/blog