Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Time for Tea!!

Well, here it is the first Wednesday in January and so, it's time for Tea. Wherever you are take time for tea. It can be very relaxing to just sit down and relax with a warm cup in your hands. And,okay, if you are not a fan of tea, it will be okay if you enjoy a cup of coffee or hot chocolate. The important thing is to relax...............and isn't the scene below relaxing? It may be January but bits of Christmas are still all around the house. Surrounding the house on the outside is lots of snow and cold. So, with that in mind, I decided to make something warm and delicious to go with my tea................little Coconut Snowball Cupcakes!! They disappear in one bite!!

I chose Twinings Earl Gray for my tea this afternoon. Yes, I have already had my tea and because of a number of interruptions, I am only just now writing about it. And so it goes... :-) Perhaps I need a maid. Oh, what a silly thought.........let me get on with what you see in the vignette above........ the tea cup, saucer and plate are one of two place settings that my daughter, Collette, gave me for Christmas two years ago. Her thought was that we would have a special luncheon, just the two of us and use them. We haven't done that yet but we're going to soon. The teapot filled with greenery was a thrift shop find last fall and it was only $2.99 and that was because it was missing the lid. So it became a decorative teapot unless one day I find a lid. There's a pretty little bell pin that I stuck in the candle in the brass holder. It belonged to my mother and is from the 1950's. She can remember giving it to me although all I can remember is that I have had it for years. When I took it off at Christmas, on a whim I stuck it in the candle and realized it looked pretty so left it there. And the last little piece in the vignette is the Snowman couple. My mother used to have a ceramics shop and those are pieces I made and painted in the mid 1980's. I keep them out through Valentine's Day. The project for today also features a snowman couple. More on that in a minute........first.............if you want to know how to bake up a batch of the little Snowball cupcakes, here's how..............

I love a good cake mix. I've already shared a recipe or two on my Legacy of Stitches blog and Betty Crocker was often there! This time, I called on the Pillsbury Doughboy. To make the little cupcakes you will need......
One Pillsbury Moist Supreme Classic White Cake Mix
One container Pillsbury Creamy Frosting Vanilla
Package of Flaked Coconut
Mini muffin tins (to make 24 muffins)

Now I realize that not all of you are in the States so if you can't get a Pillsbury cake mix, just mix up a white cake mix. Yellow cake mix will not do as these are snowballs, remember. Back to baking.........Prepare cake batter by following package directions. Spray mini muffin tins with cooking spray, then fill each cupcake well two-thirds full. You will have enough cake batter left to make twelve regular size cupcakes or one 9 x 9" cake. I made cupcakes and dipped them in sprinkles because that's what my husband prefers instead of coconut. Bake the cupcakes about ten minutes or til lightly golden (see photo).

To frost the cupcakes, place half the container of frosting in a glass bowl and then microwave for 15 seconds, no longer. You just want to soften it, not liquidate it. :-) Put some coconut in a small bowl and get ready to dip.
This proved to be an interesting photo op as I have the camera in my right hand and I am dipping with my left-hand. I am not left-handed so this was a challenge in coordination.
Dip each cupcake in the frosting, then dip into the coconut and place on a pretty plate. If the frosting begins to stiffen, just stir with a spoon. In just a few minutes, you will have a whole plate full of little Cupcake Snowballs! If you like coconut, you will really like these. It was kind of like eating a little bite of coconut pie! Yum!!
So who will eat all of these because I surely don't need them. Well, my friend Carolyn is celebrating her 95th birthday this Saturday and I think I will stop by with them on Friday and bring her a card, too.

So, now you have an idea for tea and goodies, what about a project. To keep with the winter theme, I have another Snowman design for you. This one is a design I drew for some notecards in 1994. I was working for a computer company at the time and my co-workers liked the sketches I would draw and encouraged me to print them as notecards. The design was pretty detailed so I scanned it in, then enlarged it and redesigned it without so much detail.
In the photo, you can see the notecard in black and white. The pattern for the design is shown below. (E-mail me if you need the PDF.) I have traced it with a red Micron pen onto white Kona cotton because I plan to stitch the design in Redwork. Last year I completed two series of blocks - one snowmen and one angels - and both in Redwork. I love the look. My favorite red floss color is DMC 498 but you can choose whatever color you prefer. I use two strands of floss for a delicate outline. I also use two pieces of fabric so that knots and threads do not show through. I will be using a stem/outline stitch for most area and French knots in areas such as the mouth, on the scarf, etc. As I begin to work on the piece, I will post a couple of photos so you can see the stitches.

So, are you ready to relax? Then make that cup of tea and if you don't want to bake, then grab a cookie or cracker from the cupboard. Too busy to start this project? Then work on one that is already in progress. Remember, the important thing is to relax.
Til next time,
Blessings for a lovely day!

A little stitching poem.........

This little poem was written for one of my beginning quilting students - only 8 years old but her stitches were those of a natural seamstress!

For Bailey Anne . . . .
When this you see, think of me.
Sit down and have a cup of tea.
Then place your quilt upon your lap,
begin to stitch . . . no time to nap!
Stitch patiently and you will see . . .

how fine a quilter you can be!

©1999-2008 Sandra E. Andersen