Monday, August 31, 2009

Birthdays was the worst days, now we sip champagne when we thirst-ay

Winner of the giveaway...(it's at the bottom)

That was a good break. A girl can get used to not blogging. Well, as I said, my birthday was uneventful and more about making the kids happy. And so, on the day - I cashed in the freebies and we went to the Happiest Place on Earth...on the hottest day of the year.

Since I had an annual pass, the freebie just upped the ante and instead of a ticket, they just handed me a $70 gift card! Not bad. Of course...I spent it on the kids. sigh. Even the cashier joked, "Enjoy the nice Buzz Lightyear doll you got for your 'birthday'."

I took my cousin as backup and it's a good thing. The Baby was not in the mood to ride ANYTHING. Huh. The one time *I* actually wanted to go on rides, he wasn't having it. So while my cousin took the Kid on everything, the Baby and I ate. Went into stores. Ate. He talked to ants...
Then we ate some more. Also I was being a mean mommy refused to let them ride on anything that wasn't air conditioned. HA! It's was 99 freakin' degrees in Anaheim, you can forget it, suckas!

We made it all the way to 4pm which was an amazing feat even on a non-hot day. At the end I was pooped. But I still didn't get any cake. Damn.More Disneyland pics, here.
And thanks to everyone who wished me a very happy birthday, that was awesome. And so the winner of the big Cupcakes & Cursing giveaway is...

random integer generator: 91 Anna!

Wow, the LAST comment? That IS crazy random, weird! Congrats, Anna! Email me with your address and I'll send your prize out! Thanks again for the birthday comments!

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

birthday giveaway - Cupcakes and Cursing!

It's true. Today is my birthday.

I love my birthday. The thing about birthdays is, no one cares about it as much as you do. Especially when you get older and/or have kids. Makes sense. The focus changes, as well it should. Therefore I have no plans except to buy THEM presents and do what THEY want to do. Lame. Still, it's not going to stop me from eating my weight in cake.

I do love party favors, and since last year's birthday giveaway went over well, I figured I'd do it again, only this time, one BIG prize. Yes, it's time again for Cupcakes and Cursing (Man, that should be the name of my new tv show).

You can win cupcakes...
cupcake cards, a cupcake holder, liners, (basically everything but...cupcakes. Sorry.)

...and cursing!
sh*tlist notepad, curse-ive cards.

And if you're feeling REALLY lucky, over at the recipes blog - you have one more chance to win...Hello Kitty Pasta! You know you want some.

In any case, all of this is just an elaborate plan for me to take a break - you have til Sunday. Now's your chance, delurk, leave a comment on this post - good luck! I'll be off finding some cake to eat...

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

How could you be so Dr. Evil, you're bringing out the side of me that I don't know

I don't know what it's like to sell drugs, but I do know what it's like to smuggle contraband into the house - frisk me and you'll probably find peanut butter. The kids will never see it, and when they are at school that's when the baking begins. It smells so good. Am I high right now?

I rarely make recipes from cookbooks, but when I do I expect SUCCESS. I don't know why I have such high expectations. It's because these things are published, therefore they should be perfect. So when things don't go quite right, I can't understand it, but there is ALWAYS a way to fix things...I'm talking about ugli-ness.I got the The Peanut Butter & Co. Cookbook - Peanut Butter & Co. makes great tasting peanut butter, and it is also one of those typical New York specialty restaurants that are too cute to pass up. In the cookbook is a recipe for these gorgeous brownies, that have a peanut butter brownie topping.

They tasted fantastic, but in no way did they look as cute as the pic in the book. So I did the next best thing and salvaged the ugliness by cutting them into hearts with a cookie cutter THEN filling them with softened homemade vanilla ice cream. Oh yeah. That more than saved them it made them about ten times more appealing.

Sometimes failure is delicious...Peanut Butter Heart brownies with vanilla ice cream

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Dwight: You might remember testing my urine a few years back...
Linda: We test a lot of urine.
Dwight: Mine was green.

Unique L.A. as always, celebrated what I love - events and this city. Sadly, I took no pictures. What I CAN give you is a picture of the Kid with his finger in a urine cup:

Just another...Tuesday? sigh. Nope, he has a finger infection and has to soak it in hydrogen peroxide. The doctor wanted us to use a sterile cup so 'here, use this specimen one.' Er, alright...

If you come to our house and want some juice, just specify which cup you want, is all I'm sayin'.

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Monday, August 24, 2009

You tower in the field,
every to mourn inside of a dreaming world

Did you know today was National Waffle Day? Normally I don't keep up with such things, but I saw it in passing on the internetz and therefore was fully prepared for today. Yay...for having nothing to do.

Anyway. I do love waffles. Mostly chicken and waffles, but whatever. The kids just adore them and were asking for them daily for about two months. They're off that kick now, which is great cause some mornings I'm just exhausted, though I do kind of miss my super cute Hello Kitty waffle maker. So for old time's sake I busted it out but came up with something different.
**These remind me: the other day I went to a Hello Kitty store (Yes, I am ten) and I saw the summer 'tan' Hello Kitties out. Maybe they are just chocolate flava-ed.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Waffles

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Good morning

Friday, August 21, 2009

I put on my shoes and I'm ready for the weekend

This weekend, next to the Sunday Hollywood Farmer's Market you will find me at the Unique L.A. mini market! August 23, 10am-4pm in the parking lot on Ivar, near Sunset, there will be 50 cool designers and artists selling their wares in the summer sun.

So stop by, get your weekly veggies and fruit, and support your local artists! (Also feel free to bring me a cold beverage as it will assuredly be hot...)

Also - you can now get up to the minute info on sales and events by following justJENN designs on twitter:

And from now through September 15th get a free mini pack of 'Thanks, cupcake' cards for free with a stationery pack/custom stationery purchase!
Whew. I'm done. Have a great weekend!


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Alice: Of all the silly nonsense, this is the stupidest tea party I've ever been to in all my life.

The Kid LOVES yogurt. Which is good that he's getting something in him since he now despises meat. It wouldn't be a bad thing except that he has all these health problems because of it. Just eat the damn meat, kid.

So I find myself with a lot of yogurt in the house. I'm not really a fan but I often want to cook with it since it makes such nice moist cakes. I decided to throw together some yogurt cupcakes, but with a twist. A nice green ribbon twist to be exact.

I used strawberry yogurt mixed with green tea matcha to get the prettiest little pink and green cupcakes ever. However, I must admit...I cheated. I added two drops of pink food coloring cause the strawberry yogurt just wasn't giving me that pink Pantone color that I so desired. Designers. Never satisfied.

I love they way they came out - and the MOST important thing - moist and tasty. They'd make some gorgeous cupcakes for a shower, too bad this has NOTHING to do with my color scheme for the upcoming party. Phooey!

Strawberry Green Tea Cupcakes

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Picky-picky head, go buy new head

When LilSprinkles called me up and asked me to go watermelon picking, I jumped at the chance. I had taken the kids on the strawberry picking tour in the spring and it was fabulous. I just wasn't quite sure how we'd 'pick' them.

The tour was similar to the strawberry one, though I have to say - nothing beats a farm in the Spring. The 'tasting' choices were limited, there didn't seem to be as much stuff growing during the Summer. The cool thing about this time though - at the picking stop, they had tents set up for us to cover us from the heat, and they chopped up veggies and fruits for us to try in the tent.

The Baby - not really a fan of veggies. Maybe I need to take him to tour a slaughterhouse so that he can just eat pork and beef all day. Whatever - most of the free veggies he tossed after one bite. The self-proclaimed-vegetarian-Kid on the other hand, was loving the free cucumber tasting. The Baby preferred to 'put them on his eyes like Mommy' does to relax...

When it came time to 'pick' the only picking was from a big 'ol pile on the ground. They didn't want a billion kids to go stomping their fields getting hernias lifting up melons. Rightly so. So the excitement of picking off the vine that we got from the strawberry, not so much this time. Luckily the Baby does happen to love melon, so now he has two of his own to get his fill. He says the Yellow Watermelon tastes the best.Perhaps we'll go back for pumpkin picking and tasting in the fall. Except I'll probably have to bring a ham sandwich for the Baby.

More Watermelon Tour pics, here.

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Transform and roll out!

In addition to my calling of designing buildings and sometimes tombstones, I found a new job as director of operations of my own toy hospital, specializing in Transformers. The position is around the clock and also unpaid, so it kind of sucks. Not ideal.

The Baby, who honestly has been an insanely good child lately - has taken to showing off his brute strength by...breaking things. He's not doing it maliciously (as far as I can tell) I think he is just exploring how things are put together. This is what I like to tell myself instead of calling a psychologist.

My first major surgery was on Darth Goofy. Poor Darth Goofy. His arms popped right off. Both of them. Not just once, but THREE times. That poor bastard probably quakes in his boots every time naptime is over.

But worse off are the Transformers. Now when I was growing up, Transformers were made of metal filled with lead that would probably kill you HOWEVER there was no possible way you could destroy them.

These days they are so cheap and flimsy I don't really blame the Baby for asking me to fix them. I've become the master of the Transformer. {Bumblebee car. Bumblebee robot.} {Bumblebee car. Bumblebee robot.} No problem. But Sideways....I'm sorry buddy. I'm going to have to call your time of death. I've been trying for a week but there's no hope. (I have no idea why there is a stack of poker chips in the back of that picture.)

Running a toy infirmary is hard work, but mostly it is sad to see the good ones go. Don't laugh too soon Power Rangers, I'm sure you're on deathwatch.

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Monday, August 17, 2009

Julia Child: “The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook”

I went with The Baking Posse to see Julie and Julia. Eh. It was good. I enjoyed it, but I could have used more Julia and less Julie. Or more FOOD shots. I watch my Julia Child dvds on the regular, so maybe I just have an attachment to her.

What did come across well is that food makes people happy. I have to agree. This week I made a few of these to deliver:

If you are from Hawaii, have visited Hawaii, or heck even go to the King's Hawaiian bakery - then you know about Dobash. It's a light chocolate cake, but what puts it over the top is the pudding like frosting. It's surprisingly not as rich as it looks - just the right amount of sweet.

Usually it's a layer cake. Which is all fine and dandy but I don't know about you, it sure is hard to stop eating slices of cake after cake. Also, cakes are hard to hand out to multiple people unless you want to make more than one cake. Uh. No thanks. So I thought, what if I made them into...cupcakes? Turned out to be the best thing ever. Easy to transport, fun to eat and with the same great flavor.

As for the movie - it was fun for bloggers to see it cause I think most bloggers can relate to meltdowns and whether or not you are 'telling too much' about your life. When I run into people who read this blog the first thing they always say is, 'I've never seen your face!' It's true. I like it like that. Maybe it's because I deliver my cupcakes wearing these.

Hawaiian Chocolate Dobash Cupcakes

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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Worst. Sleigh ride. Ever.

I was cleaning up the living room and saw this. Seriously, wtf. If 2 dinos, Optimus Prime, a Yeti and Wolverine came down my chimney, I'd freak the hell out.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

On Ventura, there she goes, she just bought some bitchin' clothes

Do you hate paying for shipping? Do you love the Valley?? Then I've got big news for you!

I'm excited to announce that Handmade Galleries L.A. now carries my full line of stationery! One of the best gift shops in L.A. known for their unique items -it's a fantastic store that features some really talented local artists, along with an eclectic mix of fun gift items. It's lovely to be a part of such a unique store.

If you are in the area, please stop by Handmade Galleries L.A., I'd love to know what you think!

Handmade Galleries, Inc.
14556 Ventura Blvd.
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
Monday - Saturday 11-7
Sunday 12-6

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

This is the last song I will ever sing...

Ok. This is it. The LAST baby shower I will ever throw. Honest. No one else I know is planning to have a baby so I am done, done. Er, I think...?

My brother and his wife are having a baby and of course I volunteered, this being my first chance at being an aunt. Whee! Finally I won't be the ONLY ONE who has kids in this damn family. The shower is a combo of families which only screams nightmare to me, but whatever, I'm trying to just get this done as smoothly as possible.

When I had a baby my Aunt put a duck on the invite. Big. Freakin'. Mistake. First of all - I hate ducks (birds). Therefore it was my worst nightmare, when all the guests decided 'oh hey, there's a duck on the invite, let's buy Jenn ALL DUCK RELATED BABY ITEMS.' Oh hellz no.

I am much kinder than that, so I purposefully designed the invite by drawing a variety of colors and flowers. She's having a boy, so guests will be on their own to figure out how this theme fits in to their gift buying experience. Heh. Suckers. My sisinlaw will thank me later, believe me.

Now that the invite is done, I've been madly sketching favor and food ideas. We'll see how this all comes together in a month or so...

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Jemaine: You're so beautiful you could be a part time model, but you'd probably have to keep your regular job.

Things have been crazy this summer. The Kid goes to Kindergarten in a matter of weeks so I want to make the most of our time together by enjoying the city. It's a known fact that my hipster children and I enjoy Silver Lake/Los Feliz, especially on a nice warm summer day, so we went out and about.

The goal for today was tacos and seeing as how the Kid has decided he 'doesn't like tacos' - I know, believe me, I've already written him out of the will - the first stop was The Cheese Store of Silverlake to grab him a sandwich for later. Hey, I was in a giving mood.

He enjoyed fishing out little cornichons to eat with his lunch because if it's one thing this kid adores, it's tiny pickles. Or fishing things out of vats, who knows.

After a wait in the insanely long line for coffee at Intelligentsia, (Still the best coffee in L.A., in my opinion.) we headed over to Best Fish Taco in Ensenada. If you haven't heard of this place, they are really some damn good tacos.

And how simple is the menu - only three things and at just $1.50, it's a great cheap lunch. The fish is perfectly fried, not greasy, and the corn tortillas are soft with a terrific bite. With all the salsas to choose from, I went WIMPY and stuck with the MILD. A wise choice if you ask me. Personally, I like the shrimp tacos, which are also a low $2. Hey, even the Flight of the Conchords eat here.

Our bellies were full, but the sun was heating up - so to cool off we headed to Scoops. Not close by, but who wouldn't venture out just to eat ice cream? Especially this ice cream.

Scoops is THE place for hand crafted ice cream. Brown bread, Taro White Chocolate, Miso Mascarpone Cheese, Blueberry Lemongrass - these are flavor combos you can only dream about. The Baby chose Banana Oreo and the Kid went for Mexican Banana. Yeesh, seeing as how I HATE banana, you can bet I did not ask for a taste of theirs. (The Brown Bread was divine.)

As you can tell the Baby was NOT deterred by this day full of eating. He two fisted that ice cream right into his baby mouth. Obviously he's just prepping for his career in competitive eating.

And with that, our food adventure was done. It was hard work, but it was time to head home for naps. Ah, the summer life...

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Dwight: Mr. Peanut is not classy. He is a regular peanut who happens to have a cane, monocle and a top hat.
Michael: That's what makes him classy.

This is called playing with fire. I am back on my peanut butter craving, which means stealth operations so the kids won't know.

Most kids loved peanut butter and jelly but for me, I like peanut butter and honey. I'm sure it has something to do with my incurable sweet tooth, but there is something really delicious about the nutty and the gooey sweet that goes so well together.

I was going through the great Martha Stewart's Cupcake book. Why? I have to tell you - I'm throwing ANOTHER SHOWER! So I was looking for some inspiration and saw a cute little bee/Honey cupcake. Sounded great. Er. I have to say. I wasn't pleased with them so I altered the recipe to punch it up. In any case, the topping I thought would be best was a peanut butter/honey combo. So I made up some frosting and tadahh, yumminess. The crumbled peanut butter cookies on top didn't hurt either.

Since my kids can't try it, I guess I'll just have to eat them all by myself. Too, too bad.

Honey Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

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Monday, August 10, 2009

To die by your side, well, the pleasure, the privilege is mine.

Jenn: "This gravestone better be put in before you die, is all I can say."
: "I will look at it from heaven."

: "What. You better learn to read upside down."

: "What?"

: "Nothing."

Where does O.G. think the kids and I should go for fun? Why to the cemetery of course. But we had good reason, the gravestone marker, that caused me so much grief, took so much time - was FINALLY installed. Hooray.

It was kind of momentous to see something we had worked so long on, finally complete. It was everything she wanted (thank goodness) and she was crazy happy.

The kids were off from school so I had to bring them along. To them the whole thing was fun with O.G. in a giant grass filled park. Er, except there were dead people there, hello. But they understood that they had to be respectful, DESPITE O.G.'s pleas for them to 'run around'. Sheesh. Troublemaker.

The kids actually had a good time helping her put the flowers in the vase. I just kinda stood back and missed my Grandpa a little too much. I realized that door on this whole thing which has been ongoing since March, is finally closed.

I still think it's weird to see your own name readied on a tombstone, but whatever, it's what O.G. wants. I told her we shoulda put in a fake death day just to save the $100 later. Well, I do have that Sharpie in my purse...

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Sunday, August 09, 2009

New key holder


Friday, August 07, 2009

Can you hear them?
They talk about us
Telling lies, well that's no surprise

There have been some serious, serious health issues around here. So much so that I bet my pediatrician will be able to afford a Porsche just from my $20 co-pays. Sheesh.

One of the major things that happened - the Baby's ear fell off. You think I'm joking. But it was all Van Gogh up in this mutha.

No one can figure out how it happened, just 'excema gone wrong' which sounds like the worst made for tv-movie ever. His ear was so dry it actually cracked and PEELED OFF OF HIS SKULL, almost flopping off of his head. Go ahead and puke, I almost did.

I had to TAPE the ear to his head until we made it to the doctor. Even the doctor looked a little sick to her stomach!! That kid, he feels no pain. He never complained and I suspect we went a full week not even knowing there was a problem, which is how it got so bad.

Now he is doing fine thank goodnes. Through it all, he never stopped being entertaining. Just listen to him explain this chart to me at the doc's office. I'd turn the sound up if I were you, you might learn something.

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Thursday, August 06, 2009

If you're blue and you don't know where to go to why don't you go where fashion sits

Tacos are a big deal around here. We're Mexican like dat. Given the chance I'd eat them for every meal of every day. There are plenty of great taquerias around here and O.G. has announced that Taco Bell is her favorite. There is a disturbance in the Force. I'm convinced that this is the beginning of mental illness. She is on this new kick of only liking Americanized ethnic food and suddenly Taco Hell is the shiz, I guess.

Not for me, no way no how. I like to eat home-style Mexican food and if I can't buy it, I'll make it. When I came across this beef at Trader Joes, I was intrigued. It's already sliced thin, chopped almost. I knew it's be really easy to cook and perfect for tacos.

This is really the lamest recipe ever since there's nothing to it, but I will tell you I also tried this new 3 pepper salsa from TJ's and my word is that stuff good.

I'm sorry if these aren't as GOOD as Taco Bell tacos (it's 100 times better), but maybe O.G. would go for them if I dress the Baby up like a dog.

Carne Asada Tacos recipe

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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Every moment frontin' and maxin', chillin' in the car they spent all day waxin'

Summer Farmer's Markets are the best. It's warm and there's something refreshing about fresh fruit at your disposal.

Also a win in this heat? Aguas Frescas. Lordy are they delicious despite my health code doubts when it comes to giant vats of anything, they sure are refreshing and the kids love them.

The Baby had a doctor's appt so we had a nice lunch of Pupusas and Strawberry Lemonade. The Baby begged and begged for Pluots. If you remember the last time, those Watermelon Pluots were gone in a second.

I bought him Apple flavored ones which he declared 'Yuck.' So to our surprise THIS was in season:Cotton Candy Pluots. What. He said these weren't as good as the Watermelon ones, but these did get the Baby stamp of approval. Still. Again I wouldn't know. I didn't even get a bite.

Even though I don't like the heat, I kind of don't want summer to end.

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