Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Brownie Day DECEMBER 8, 2015

DIANE'S CORNER ... Celebrate Brownie Day

Brownies, that rich, decadent, purely hedonistic blend of cake and cookie that feels amazing in your mouth and leaves you craving more. There’s a million different derivations of how to make these delicious treats, but there’s one thing they all have in common. Levels of chocolate so thick and rich they should be illegal. So popular are they that you can find them served as the foundation for sundaes, they can be found in milkshakes, and there’s even been breakfast cereal based on them. Brownie Day is your chance to get in and indulge in all that decadent goodness you’ve avoided the rest of the year, or at least an opportunity to go into some serious brownie overload.
The first brownies ever made set the bar for the hedonistic indulgence that was to follow, created for a fair luncheon in the late 1800’s, the first variety of these was found bedecked in an apricot glaze and inundated with delicious walnuts. To this day the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago serves the same recipe as that served to these ladies well over a hundred years ago.
Brownie Day was established by the millions of fans of this chocolatey-cakey treat, and the recipes that have cropped up over the years have been legion. From Chocolate Mint brownies to those made with rich swirls of caramel, the variations of brownie are limited only by the extent of your imagination.
Well let’s be frank, the best way to celebrate Brownie Day is to hunker down over a big ol’ slice of brownie and indulge in this favorite rich chocolatey dessert

thanks, helen, for more vintage christmas finds

Word of the Day


Definition:(noun) A powerfully built, robust person.
Usage:Grandmother described everyone in larger-than-life terms. Even scrawny Bill from down the block was "a regular strapper."

ray's aunt made this in a 1960s christmas ceramics class. it is the center of my 62 tree collection. she painted it green with the multi colored light bulbs.


John Lennon Shot by Mark David Chapman (1980)

While returning to his New York hotel with wife Yoko Ono one evening, John Lennon was shot and killed by Mark David Chapman, a delusional and possibly psychotic Beatles fan. Chapman eventually elected not to pursue an insanity defense and instead pled guilty to the murder, receiving a sentence of 20 years to life in prison. He has since been denied parole on several occasions

Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson (1832)

Bjørnson was a Norwegian writer, editor, and theatre director who won the 1903 Nobel Prize for Literature. He worked to stimulate national pride by linking Norwegian history and legend to modern ideals and sought to revive Norwegian as a literary language. His poem "Yes, We Love This Land Forever" serves as the lyrics of the Norwegian national anthem. Bjørnson is known as one of "the four great ones" of 19th-century Norwegian literature.

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

The Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary is an important day throughout Latin America, but it is especially significant in the Mexican town of San Juan de los Lagos, where the celebration begins several days in advance. The town temporarily renames the streets where the festival will occur. On Calle de Alegria (Joy Street), for example, there are puppet shows, side shows, and musical performances. On the morning of December 8, the 11-inch image of the Virgin Mary leaves the local church, carried by priests on a silver litter.

Bye, Bye, Bananas

In the mid 1900s, the most popular banana in the world—a sweet, creamy variety called Gros Michel grown in Latin America—all but disappeared from the planet. At the time, it was the only banana in the world that could be exported

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1765 - Eli Whitney was born in Westboro, MA. Whitney invented the cotton gin and developed the concept of mass-production of interchangeable parts. 

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1854 - Pope Pius IX proclaimed the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. The theory holds that Mary, mother of Jesus, was free of original sin from the moment she was conceived. 

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1865 - Composer Jean (Johan) Julius Christian Sibelius was born. 

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1886 - At a convention of union leaders in Columbus, OH, the American Federation of Labor was founded. 

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1952 - On the show "I Love Lucy," a pregnancy was acknowledged in a TV show for the first time.

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1998 - The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that police could not search a person or their cars after ticketing for a routine traffic violation

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1998 - The first female ice hockey game in Olympic history was played. Finland beat Sweden 6-0. 

Earlier in the day, Lennon had autographed an album for Chapman. 


If You Were Born Today, December 8

You are an enthusiastic and determined person who has high ideals as well as very big plans and goals. A deep thinker, your morals are unusual yet strong, and your courage is great, particularly when it comes to standing up for a cause you believe in. You have a definite religious or philosophical bent. You are exceptionally attractive no matter what you look like, as you have much in the way of personal charisma. You are frequently devising new plots and challenges for yourself.Famous people born today: Jim Morrison, Kim Basinger, David Carradine, Sammy Davis Jr., Sinead O'Connor, Teri Hatcher, Ian Somerhalder, Nickie Minaj, AnnaSophia Robb.

Picture of the day
Kasubi TombsOne of the Kasubi Tombs in KampalaUganda. The burial grounds of four kabakas (kings of Buganda), the tombs were first built in 1881 but destroyed in a fire on 16 March 2010. The Bugandan and Ugandan administration have vowed to rebuild this World Heritage Site.

Picture of an insect peeking over the side of a leaf


Photograph by Can Tunçer, National Geographic 
While in his garden at his home in İzmir, Turkey, Can Tunçer caught this inquisitive insect peeking over the top of a leaf. “This [was] a one-time opportunity,” he writes.

0 - 3 mths

Holiday Mousie Slippers

Image of Holiday Mousie Slippers
Over 6,000 Free Patterns on LionBrand.com
Discover over 800 yarns and 6,000 free knit, crochet, and craft patterns on LionBrand.com. Discover the perfect pattern for you.
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knit, 12 - 18 mths




Vintage Bottlebrush Christmas Trees with Snow / Set of 8

crochet, CHRISTMAS
Rebeckah's Treasures' Crochet Little Snowman Free Pattern

Don't Eat the Paste: Tink Slippers- crochet pattern
A crochet pattern for slippers based off a famous fairy's footwear- Tink's Slippers!
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5 Minute Flowers! pattern by Jessica Gumm
I started making these flowers as a quick and easy last minute gift. They work wonderfully as bows, hair clips, key chains and just about anything else you c...
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crochet, CHRISTMAS
Fairytale Hooded Cape pattern by Lara Sue
Main body is worked in DK, and Bulky is used for trim.
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1960's Mid Century Vintage 19" Large Metal Tin Retro Christmas Tree Holiday decor Round Serving Snack Tray Platter Living Room 

Snugglebug University: Homemade Sugar Cubes
These sugar cubes are so awesome!   A few of you may have seen me pin the original sugar cube tutorial here.  Can you say genius!  When Lu was 2 she help...
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stephanie o'dea

CrockPot Bread Pudding Recipe

I had two pieces of rock hard bread leftover from when I made bread last week
Since I worked oh-so-hard on the bread (that was sarcasm. could you tell?) I hated to throw any of it away. We had a loaf of Trader Joe's brown rice bread in the fridge, so I decided to combine the bread and make a yummy bread pudding. Oh! And I used a crockpot.

The Ingredients.
--bread. I wasn't smart enough to count the pieces. I think it was probably about 6 or so. But you want enough to soak up the liquid, but not too much that the bread isn't completely saturated and squishy. (I should have counted the pieces..)
--2 cups of soy milk (If you are going to use cow's milk, you might need a bit of extra sugar)
--2 eggs
--1 teaspoon vanilla
--1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
--1/4 cup dried fruit--I used cranberries
--1/4 cup brown sugar (I forgot to pull this out of the cabinet before I took the picture)
--1/4 cup raw sugar (optional)

The Directions.

I used my 1.5 quart mini crockpot for this dish. If you don't have a little crockpot, you can insert a heat-resistant dish into your regular crockpot. Or you can just plop it in your big one and keep an eye on it---it will cook much quicker this way.

--in a bowl, mix eggs, milk, brown sugar, vanilla and cinnamon.
--tear up bread and push down into the liquid mixture
--fold in dried fruit

cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours, or on low for 3-5. The cooking time will greatly depend on what size crockpot you use and cooking vessel size. I didn't prop open the lid; it was completely closed.

The pudding will be done when the top is browned and you can push on the top pieces of bread without too much liquid squirting out. This took 3.5 hours in my mini crockpot.

I thought this "needed something"--so I decided to bruleeicize the top by sprinkling a 1/4 cup of raw sugar on the top and broiling for a few minutes.

The Verdict.

I served this to the kids as an after-school snack and they were really pleased. Go for a nice crusty french bread. yum.

7 Christmas Bubble Lights


You need:
1.) one 9''x18'' sheet of green construction paper
2.) scrap paper of any color you'd like for bows, berries, etc. 

First, take the green paper and fold it in half...

...hot-dog style, like this.

Draw a line along the length that is open...NOT the side where the crease is...about 1-2 inches away from the edge. This marks your "NO CUTTING ZONE" for later. 

Then, draw tic marks every half-inch along the top and the bottom. You can make these marks one-inch apart for younger kids, but the narrower they are, the "lacier" your wreath will turn out in the end. 

Next, connect those tic marks with your ruler to make straight cutting lines. Notice my lines stop at the first line we drew earlier.

Then, cut along each line you drew, being careful not to go too far!

It will look like this when you've finished cutting. 

Now, open it up...

...And roll it in the opposite direction that the crease was folded to make a tube-like shape. It helps to have a second pair of hands for this step.

 I have a friend hold one end together while I put staples in other side every couple of inches...as far in as my stapler will reach. Then we trade sides and I staple the other end the same way. 

I've found it just works better to have adults do the stapling part. Kids will only bunch it up, rip the "rings," and get frustrated.

I've also found that creasing the section that isn't cut, on either side a little bit helps to shape it for the next step. 

Now, join both ends of the "tube" you just made to create the wreath shape...

...and staple the ends together. At this point, you may need to finagle the stapler in through the "rings" to fix any bulges in the middle. After this, it should look like a wreath.

Hang the final product in a window, on a door, or make a garland of them.


super easy but SUPER DUPER cute!
These ornaments from target. selected because they are big. i loved the colors so i picked these.....but any glass ball ornaments would work. 

i did this one child at a time....you'll see why.
first i painted their hand with regular craft paint.

set the ornament in the middle of their flat palm....fingers out.

slowly have them close their hand so an entire handprint is made.
make sure they don't move their fingers....just close their hand.

then they slowly take their fingers off the ornament.

set it somewhere to dry.
then you can choose if you want to yell at your child ......
or not.

let the white paint dry....we waited overnight....just to be safe.
then use a Sharpie to add faces.

we used a glue gun and cut out tiny little scarves.
we didn't have black felt or we would've made hats too.

and they add snow falling also.



i think they are about the cutest ornaments i have ever seen.
then write their name and date on the palm and you created a keepsake!

1930s Antique Vintage Christmas Tree Topper, White Cellophane Tinsel Star, Red Aluminum Reflector, Feather Tree Topper


13 Vintage Christmas Tree Foil Light Reflectors

Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life. - Omar Khayyam


A princess once worked at Macy’s® department store—Princess Anne AntoinetteFrancois Charlotte of Bourbon-Parma! (Submitted by Chester Tumidajewicz, Amsterdam, NY) On September 15, 2015, Queen Elizabeth II became the U.K.’s longest-reigning monarch, surpassing the 63 years, 7 months, and 2 days ruled by her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria. It took 70,000 beetles to yield one pound of the carmine dye used by Cleopatra to paint her lips. All the gold ever mined worldwide would fill just three Olympic-sized swimming pools! (Submitted by Chester Tumidajewicz, Amsterdam, NY)

1940's colorful WB christmas card forest creatures look at christmas tree,deer,rabbits,squirrel,chipmunk,birds,bears,raccoons,owls,ferret 

"Welcome" in Kala Kawaw Ya (Australia) [come in] - Aya, ngapa lagiya muyari

Pair These DIY Reindeer Mugs With a Hot Chocolate Kit for a Sweet Gift Set

Snacks & Quick Meals - Make your Stale Tortilla Chips Fresh Again

thanks, shelley

thanks, patty

Sixteen Things Calvin and Hobbes Said Better Than Anyone Else

To paraphrase E.B. White, the perfect sentence is one from which nothing can be added or removed. Every word plays its part. In my more giddy moments I think that a simple comic strip featuring Calvin, a preternaturally bright six year-old, and Hobbes, his imaginary tiger friend, features some of the most lucid sentences committed to print. And when I sober up, I usually think exactly the same.
Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes ran between 1985 and 1995. His comic strip managed to infuse wondering (and wandering) on a cosmic scale into an ageless world of lazy Sunday afternoons, snow goons, and harassed babysitters. I’m not saying that you should take moral and philosophical guidance from the inventor of Calvinball (a game that runs on chaos theory), but you could do much worse.
So here, in no particular order, is a selection of quotes that nail everything from the meaning of life to special underwear. Enjoy.

On life’s constant little limitations
Calvin: You know, Hobbes, some days even my lucky rocket ship underpants don’t help.
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On expectations
Calvin: Everybody seeks happiness! Not me, though! That’s the difference between me and the rest of the world. Happiness isn’t good enough for me! I demand euphoria!
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On why we are scared of the dark
Calvin: I think night time is dark so you can imagine your fears with less distraction.
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On the unspoken truth behind the education system
Calvin: As you can see, I have memorized this utterly useless piece of information long enough to pass a test question. I now intend to forget it forever. You’ve taught me nothing except how to cynically manipulate the system. Congratulations.
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On the cruel reality of commercial art
Hobbes: Van Gogh would’ve sold more than one painting if he’d put tigers in them.
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On the tragedy of hipsters
Calvin: The world bores you when you’re cool.
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On the tears of a clown
Calvin: Isn’t it strange that evolution would give us a sense of humour? When you think about it, it’s weird that we have a physiological response to absurdity. We laugh at nonsense. We like it. We think it’s funny. Don’t you think it’s odd that we appreciate absurdity? Why would we develop that way? How does it benefit us?
Hobbes: I suppose if we couldn’t laugh at things that don’t make sense, we couldn’t react to a lot of life.
Calvin: (after a long pause) I can’t tell if that’s funny or really scary.
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On the falling of sparrows (or providence’s lack of a timetable)
Calvin: Life is full of surprises, but never when you need one.
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On why winter is the cruellest of seasons
Calvin: Getting an inch of snow is like winning 10 cents in the lottery.
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On the gaping hole in contemporary art’s soul
Calvin: People always make the mistake of thinking art is created for them. But really, art is a private language for sophisticates to congratulate themselves on their superiority to the rest of the world. As my artist’s statement explains, my work is utterly incomprehensible and is therefore full of deep significance.
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On playing Frankenstein with words
Calvin: Verbing weirds language.
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On realising God is more Woody Allen than Michael Bay
Calvin: They say the world is a stage. But obviously the play is unrehearsed and everybody is ad-libbing his lines.
Hobbes: Maybe that’s why it’s hard to tell if we’re living in a tragedy or a farce.
Calvin: We need more special effects and dance numbers.
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On why ET is real
Calvin: Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us.
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On looking yourself in the mirror
Hobbes: So the secret to good self-esteem is to lower your expectations to the point where they’re already met?
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On the future
Calvin: Trick or treat!
Adult: Where’s your costume? What are you supposed to be?
Calvin: I’m yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Madison Avenue and Hollywood, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you’re old and weak. Am I scary, or what?
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On the truth
Calvin: It’s a magical world, Hobbes, ol’ buddy…Let’s go exploring!

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