Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hot Christmas Punch

Do you ever eat or drink something that brings back memories? Every year growing up my Mom would make her special Christmas Punch to drink that was always a favorite of mine. I made some tonight and with my first sip it just felt like Christmas. I knew I just had to share this tasty recipe with you so you could maybe start a Christmas tradition at your house!

Here it is:
2 cups pineapple juice
2 cups cranberry juice cocktail ( I used "light")
1 cup orange juice
lemon juice ( if using fresh-about 1/2 lemon, if using bottled- couple splashes)
1/2 cup of sugar
1 3/4 cup water
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
pinch of salt

If you want to make it to serve immediately, mix everything in a big pot and heat until sugar dissolves. Serve Warm.

I usually heat the water and sugar until the sugar dissolves and then mix everything in a pitcher. I store it in the refrigerator and just warm a cup whenever I want it!

This recipe is very forgiving. Just taste as you go and add more or less of anything!

What are some special recipes you always have around Christmas time?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Simply Sweet Shop and SALE!

If you haven't noticed, I added a link to my shop  ---> right over there --->. I put some of my favorite holiday appliques in there with prices. If the shop does well, I will add some more products. Just testing it out right now! Check it out and let me know what you think!

Also, I am having a SALE on a few shirts (not in the store). These below are discounted for $12.00 and shipping is only $1.00! There is nothing wrong them... I'm just in the Christmas spirit and feel these are just too cute! Email me at emma(dot)acook(at)gmail(dot)com if you're interested!

                                      Football Shirt (sizes 12M and 3T)

                     Girly Snowflake Shirt with sparkles around neck (size 3T)

                                    Triple Candy Cane Shirt (size 24M)

                                     Snowman Face Shirt (size 12M)   SOLD

                                     Candy Cane Shirt (size 24M)

Can't think of a title for some reason

Where has the time gone? I cannot believe it's almost Christmas (and I barely have any of my presents ready)! Sweet Lawson is just as sweet as ever, minus the part of getting into everything, climbing in the fireplace, and trying to pull the lights off the tree, hah! He is healthy and happy... so everything is great! He is loving feeding himself and drinking out of a sippy cup. His favorite foods would have to be peas, cheerios, blueberries, kiwi, graham crackers, yogurt, and oatmeal... honestly though this boy will eat ANYTHING (including wood, paper, and christmas tree)! He also has started licking the floor and rugs. Don't know why he is doing this? It's really funny though because it looks like he is doing push-ups (girl style)  when he does this. He gets on all fours and then bends his arms down, licks the floor, and then back up, repeat. haha! He has been saying "ba ba" and "da da" for a while, but he just began saying "ma ma" a lot, which make me very happy! He also now says "du" when he sees the dogs. He loves looking out the window at them. He spends a lot of time standing and looking out the window, just as content as he could be! 
On another note, Adam just finished another semester of school! Hooray! Only one more until he graduates! We are so proud of him! He works full time (including Saturdays) and goes to school full time. Sometimes I don't know how he does it... I know he is extremely tired! Yesterday, I found out I am going to be able to resume classes in my graduate program at Auburn. I begin January 10th... yikes! Not much time for me to find someone to watch Lawson. I know I am going to be so sad leaving him; but it will only be for a couple of hours 3 day a week... and I'm ultimately doing it for him!

Hope everyone is having a great week and is getting excited about the holidays coming up (including the  national championship game, war eagle!)!

Saturday, November 20, 2010


We are getting so excited about Thanksgiving! This will be an extra special one because it is Lawson's first! He is going to LOVE all the food and excitement and fun times with his cousins!  It's so crazy to think that last year this time I was pregnant with my little precious boy...this year sure has flown by! Last year, a few days before Thanksgiving, I had a 4D ultrasound. So... this is Lawson a year ago. 

And this is him now...CRAZY!!! 

Oh yeah, and it's not only me that's excited about Thanksgiving. Adam is super excited.... mainly because he gets to go deer hunting and eat fried turkey. (today he actually tried on all his hunting gear and wore it around for a while, haha!!!) This is Adam's kill last year... 

This year we're hoping for a real big one... come on now, he really has to provide for 3 of us this year! And this year we are definitely getting the deer processed so we will actually eat it! I kind of have a hard time going out to the freezer to get a whole leg to cook for dinner...hah! I hope everyone has some exciting plans for the Holidays too! 

On a side note, Lawson is getting his FIFTH tooth. I feel like with every tooth he gets, the older he looks. Where has my little swaddled baby boy gone? He is eating table food, trying to walk, babbling all the time, getting too big for his carseat, and testing the word "NO". Oh yeah... and at his 9 month check up Thursday he was 19.13 pounds and 29 inches long! Just this week, I went through his closet to put up his summer clothes and get out some clothes for the cooler weather... however, those summer clothes he will NEVER... EVER... wear again. It made me cry as I thought about those outfits and the fact that my little baby is growing up.  

Happy Thanksgiving! This year, I'm especially thankful for Lawson and the miraculous blessing he is!
What are y'all thankful for??

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I've got the skinny...

So, I've been converted. Ever since I purchased my first pair of skinny jeans this October, I have fallen in love with them! I love how they look with a cute pair of flats or under some boots during cooler weather.  My mom bought my first pair from Gap and I wear them all the time! I decided I needed another pair... but without Mom buying them there was just no way I could bring myself to pay $60 for some more when I have a drawer full of jeans! So I got the idea that I would attempt to convert some old jeans in to some skinnys. So I pulled out these jeans that are too long and I rarely ever wear.  Here is me with them on inside out right before I pinned them. (excuse the HUGE mess and baby proofed fireplace and my nasty shirt!)
After Adam's failed attempt to pin them for me, I ended up pulling the jeans tight and then bending over and pinning them. ( After this step, your back WILL hurt... trust me!) I then laid my jeans on a table and with a straight edge and sharpie make a line to follow while I sewed. After sewing the seam, I cut off the excess  jean and then did a zigzag stitch (since I don't own a serger) to finish the edges and prevent them from fraying. This is how they turned out!
They are a little "bunchy" because they are too long, but I think they are cute, and with boots you won't even be able to see! This literally only took about 30 minutes (of course the little one was in bed or it could have taken all day)! Maybe I can refashion a cute top to go with them! Hope everyone is having a great week!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"all i do is sew, sew, sew no matter what, what, what..."

Since Sunday night, I have literally been behind my embroidery machine every second I get a chance! Last Friday I received an email saying that the yearly Kid Clothes Connection Holiday Market still needed more vendors. I started thinking this might be a great chance to get my name out there and let people know that I can sew and bake! I knew that I didn't have many days to prepare, but Adam assured me he would help me get it done. So I filled out the application and mailed in my check ( non refundable). Then Friday Lawson goes to the Dr. with his first ear infection :( which means we are not sleeping much at night. Sunday I start running a fever with sore throat, aches, blah blah blah!  Since having a child I get sick a lot more than before! Lack of sleep really does take a toll on your immune system! So of course I start freaking out how am I ever going to get everything done... sick baby, sick mom, and not much sleep plus so much to get done! My sweet husband said I promised you I would help and I am, so teach me how to run the embroidery machine. So Sunday night we sat down and I showed him how to embroider... and he was actually really good at it... except for designing the color combos, which after his "rudolph" bib I now have to approve every fabric/thread color! haha! anyways, we have been embroidering away and I am really getting worn out! However, I still have about 15 shirts and  1o burp cloths to applique, and 300 cupcakes to bake! whew, I am tired just thinking about it! Although I still don't have a voice (which Adam has been loving all week), I am not going to give up!  Here are a few pics of some things that I am going to be selling at the Holiday Market:

 Adam did the snowman bib! Hope everyone is having a good week and y'all aren't sick!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Weekend Fun!

I don't know why I can't be like any normal person and just sit down and enjoy "resting". Somehow I always have to have a project going. This past Saturday, we had our very first yard sale. Who knew so many people LOVE yard sales?? Seriously, we has at least 50 or more people stop by ( some came back 2 or 3 times even), and I was worried no one would come! hah! Needless to say, we had a very productive yard sale and were able to get rid of some junk and make a few dollars! After yard saling all morning and then going to a wedding that night, I was pretty tired Sunday. However, I decided I would redo our kitchen table. After finishing that, I decided I would paint our kitchen cabinets. I really wish I had a "before" picture of the table. This table was a $30 steal I found a couple of years ago at one of those antique stores. I really hated the stain on the table, but it was solid wood and I knew I could fix it up somehow. Well... 2 years later I finally fixed it! I really love the way it turned out. I was going for an old rustic worn down look. I first sanded the table down to remove the glossy finish and stain. I then painted it with a white primer (2 coats). I still wanted some of the original table to "show through" so the primer worked perfectly. After it dried, I then sanded it again, working especially on the curves of the table and legs. I then used a paint brush with just a little dark chocolate stain on it and brushed little stroke all over... making sure to get the curves and crevices and wiping the excess with a paper towel. Then, I sanded it one final time. I still have to buy a clear water-based (so it won't look yellow) top coat to brush on it so I will be able to wipe down the table when it gets dirty.

I have started on the cabinets, but have found out that it is going to take multiple coats of paints! ugh! I guess these will be a work in progress for right now. After painting them, I am planning to sand down the grooves on the front and put a chocolate glaze to make the insets of the cabinet have some depth to them. I then am going to find some rustic hardware that is a dark chocolate color as well. Hope everything turns out good! I will post some finished pics when I do actually finish! 
I will leave you with this picture of the cutest chicken and tigers you will every see! Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween and has a great week! 

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pardon the progress...

I am trying to redo my blog and make it more "professional." I'm hoping that I can attract more traffic and get more involved in the blog world! I am going to change my blog title to "Simply Sweet", but just wanted to give everyone the heads up before I did it!! Trust me though... I'll definitely still be a "Crazy Cook", haha! Let me know what you think?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Can it get any sweeter??

This afternoon while we were playing outside (Lawson's LOVES outside), I was able to snap some super cute pictures! I love this little guy more than words can describe! His personality is blossoming everyday and he is growing more and more into "Lawson" and I am loving everything about him! He laughs and smiles literally all the time and he is starting to try and stand up! Hope these sweet smiles can brighten your day! Hope everyone had a great day! And I would say Happy Friday, but Friday in our household is just another day of the week when your husband works on Saturdays :(.

Monday, October 18, 2010

saving some $$ on meat

I'm sure everyone knows by now that meat is super pricey these days.  I'm pretty good at couponing and saving money on everything else... except meat! I just always seem to wonder up and down the meat aisle trying to find something reasonably priced that's not full of fat and is somewhat edible (not chitlins!!)  I for one could give up meat, but with a man to feed,  meat must be part of the meal. I try to stock up when meat goes on sale, but I either forget it's in the freezer or don't leave enough time to defrost it! So lately I have been "stretching" my ground meat. This isn't something new and I'm not brilliant for doing this, but I just wanted to let people know that it does work and it's tasty! Whenever I'm using ground beef to make something like meatballs, hamburgers, tacos etc. I will add a can of black beans , drained and mashed ( if needed)  to make more "meat". For example, last week I used 1/3 lb of ground beef mixed with half a can of mashed beans (and bread crumbs, eggs, seasonings, etc.) to make meatballs for meatball subs. We had enough to make two huge sandwiches and even had lots of leftover meatballs! I didn't even tell Adam I did it and he had no clue (until he reads this of course). Tonight, we are having tacos (you know the taco kits). The instructions say to use 1 lb. of meat but I always just use 1/2 lb with one can of beans!  This makes it healthier since beans are full of good protein and fiber and they are only like 60 cents a can! and no, we don't eat ground beef with beans every meal cause that would be weird and boring! Anybody else have any good tips on saving money on meat? I would LOVE to know!!!

and the winner is...

Meredith over at The Kelton's Cozy Cottage!! I'm so excited to either bake you something sweet or make something for your sweet "soon to be here" baby! Thanks for everyone who entered! Check back often, because I'm already thinking of doing another giveaway soon!!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Don't forget!!

Tonight, I am ending the giveaway at 10:00 pm! Hurry if you want a chance to win either a free cake or applique!!! Check it out Crazy Cooks: GIVEAWAY!! I will post the results in the morning!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


It has been really great being able to stay at home while Lawson is so young and I would not trade it for the world! But let's face it... I can't stay at home forever... unless I find a way to make money doing it! Hmmm... so I'm going to try and boost my blog and host a giveaway! Okay, as of now I only have 11 followers, that's right 11! I think it's time to fix that! I'm going to offer up a chance to win some great freebies to help spread the word! What will you win? Well you actually get to choose one of two things:

1. If you live in the Auburn/Opelika area you can enter to win a 2 layer cake (chocolate, yellow, or red velvet with either chocolate, vanilla, or cream cheese buttercream) if your not a "cake" type of person I'm sure we can work something out :)

2. A Halloween or Christmas applique on a white tshirt (long of short sleeved) or onesie with a monogram! (sizes nb - 4T)

How can you enter to win this awesome stuff?? You have 3 chances to enter the giveaway!
1. Simply "follow" my blog and leave me a comment saying you want to win!
2. "Like" Simply Sweet on facebook and post a comment on my page!
3. Spread the word... post about my giveaway either on facebook or your own blog and email me to let me know (!

So there it is... 3 chances to win some awesome stuff! I will post the results Monday morning... so you have until Sunday evening to enter! Happy Thursday!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Home again, home again!

After being at the beach for over a week, it sure was hard to come home! Lawson really loved the ocean and sand. Apparently sand tastes good according to Lawson.. haha!

I am so glad Adam was able to spend both weekends with us and see Lawson at the beach. If y'all don't know, Adam LOVES the ocean... well, just water in general, and I know he was thrilled that Lawson loves it too! I hope they grow up to be best friends and can enjoy activities together, such as fishing!
While at the beach, Lawson was able to spend lots of time with MiMi and Big Daddy and even give Mommy extra time to sew and applique! I was able to sew a shopping cart/highchair cover that ended up being so much easier than I thought.
It is reversible with the cutest monkey pattern on one side and giraffe print on the other. I had a lot of extra giraffe fabric leftover and I am planning to make Lawson some pants and then put a giraffe applique on a shirt to match!

I also was able to finish a jon jon and add the most adorable, I mean boyish, helicopter applique with Lawson's name monogrammed under it!

While at the beach, we not only celebrated my Dad's bday, but also my nephew's 2nd bday. I baked a BIG cupcake cake and decorated it while we were there. I think it turned out super cute!

It's nice to be home, but I sure do miss waking up to an ocean view and eating good seafood!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

My New Toy!

My sweet husband bought me a new embroidery machine... yay! He is hoping this is a way I can make some money! Yesterday I had a one on one session at Opelika Sewing Center and she taught me so many things about my machine and how to use it, but I'm still learning and everything is not perfect yet. The second time I used the machine, I put a really adorable monogram on one of Lawson's outfit. I finally got it centered and it looked so good... that is until I un-hooped it only to realize I had embroidered the back instead of the front! haha! Here are some Auburn burp cloths and bibs I made last night! If you need anything embroidered please let me know! These could make really cute baby shower gifts... and of course I could do them in Crimson Tide too!