Wednesday, December 19, 2012

My "Hometown"

I know I am far from alone in being shocked/heart broken over the Newtown, CT school tragedy. It seems as though these events are becoming all too apart of our world though this one was particularly hard to process. I felt similar to how I felt when the Virginia Tech tragedy occurred as I had a connection to the area it took place in. Gone is the "that would never happen here" mentality as these two specific areas are places that I would feel the safest and most protected.

As I am sure you have noticed, I keep things relatively impersonal and private here at One Preppy Cookie. This blog is more of a creative outlet and less of a journal for me. However sometimes there are personal things that I would like to share with you and today I have a little glimpse into where I am from.

My "hometown" is a mere 14 miles from Newtown. I thought I would share a somewhat recent trip I took there to put in perspective what a special place that part of our country is, though I trust you have already seen that from the acts of kindness and support taking place there over the past 5 days.

Last summer, we paid a visit to my "hometown." Since I lived in 5 states prior to my starting high school, it can sometimes be hard to determine my "hometown." But Roxbury, CT is where I was born and where I lived until I was 6 years old. I had not been back in 25 years and as my mom said, not much had changed.

Here is the first home my parents bought and where I was brought home to from Danbury Hospital. The backyard backs up to a dairy farm and the cows used to occasionally wander up to the back windows.

Next a glimpse of the "town" of Roxbury. Don't look too fast or you will miss gas station, one general store and a small coffee shop all in one place.

Really...that's it!

The church my parents were married in...

The town library...

We ended our trip with a stop at a nursery. I had to smile when I saw all of the dad's favorite cutting flower to grow. Maybe he still loves them from growing up in CT??

I was chatting with a lady at the nursery about the flowers and then wandered away. My mom spoke with her next and mid conversation she said, "LINDA???" And then she turned to me and said, "AMY???" Turns out that she and her son had done playgroup with my mom, brother and I almost 30 years ago. (Remember, she had not seen nor heard from us in 25 years!) It was a serious "small world" discovery and one that can really only happen in places like Roxbury.

We haven't lived anywhere like Roxbury ever since (I don't think many people have.)

My thoughts continue to be with the families and friends of everyone affected in this terrible tragedy. Your courage amazes me.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

We Remember

As a Virginia Tech Hokie this is sadly all too familiar to me.

Please join in remembering the victims of yet another terrible tragedy.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

(70 Degree) Winter Wonderland

As I peruse Facebook and the like, I have observed many complaints regarding this week's unseasonably warm weather. Each to their own as my opinion is the exact opposite. I am welcoming the warm weather with open arms and even celebrated it by indulging in frozen yogurt two days in a row this week. (Thinking I may have to go for three today now that I typed that.)

If you're on "Team Winter" then these cookies are for you. They were made for a repeat customer who requested polar bears, penguins, igloos and "something else" for her son's birthday. We agreed that snowflakes seemed like the right choice to complete the set and I am very happy with how the collection turned out.

Thank you once again Mina!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Tutotial Roundup

Looking for a few fun projects to work on this holiday season? While not all of these tutorials are "holiday" themed, they could easily be adapted to this festive time of year. (Think red and green topiaries, Christmas tree applique shirts, or snowman ribbon notebooks.)

Peppermint Wreath:

Mason Jar Water-less Snow Globes:

Ribbon Topiaries:

DIY No Sew Applique Shirt:

Grosgrain Ribbon Notebook:

Happy crafting!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Champagne, Crafts & Cookies with Young House Love

Saturday morning as my husband drove me into D.C. he clarified once again why exactly I was on my way to cash in a Living Social ticket I had bought to "meet the blog people." (His real worlds.) "The blog people" are John and Sherry from Young House Love, a blog I have been reading for years. The minute I read about an opportunity for a two hour crafting session/book signing with them, I was in. And while my husband may not really understand the appeal of that, I was right in knowing that it would be a great time.

We were welcomed to the event by a smiling John and Sherry, along with a dedicated spot at the table with crafting supplies and a glass of champagne (my kind of Saturday morning!)

Ironically the room we were in had the worst lighting for photos. This means I took my typical quality of pics but I am sure this blogging/photog powerhouse could have lived without the darkness.

There were 50 women and 0 men in attendance, much to Sherry and John's amusement.

My spot...

The group...

We worked on three projects during our time together. First was a painted vase based on a project in their new book, the second was a set of candlesticks and finally we made a few ornaments.

My favorite craft was the set of candlesticks.

I loved seeing what everyone else came up with. We had some serious DIY ladies in the room as evidenced by the full glasses of champagne and beautiful pieces left on the tables at the end of the session. Crafts > morning libations for this crew!

Next up was the book signing portion of the morning. Sherry and John were both so genuine in their time with us. You can tell that they really value their readers and took the time to make everyone feel welcomed.

Of course I could not meet them without sharing my only real "DIY" talents, so I dorkily (not a word but seems to fit the act well) brought along a batch of cookies for them. They were Jonathan Adler inspired and seemed to be a big hit.

John even gave them a little shout-out in their it!

So on the way home when my husband asked me how my meeting with "the blog people" was, I could say with all sincerity that I had an awesome time.

Thanks YHL!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Movember - Mustache Cookies

Once upon a time there was a wife who was not too excited to hear that her husband wanted to participate in his grad school's annual "Movember" fundraiser. Of course she supported the cause and yes she loved team spirit...she just didn't love mustaches. She was skeptical but didn't say much. Then a mere few days into the month, that woman's husband shaved. Again she didn't say anything but learned from her mom that her husband had told her he felt that he needed to "pick his battles" and had decided to nix the actual mustache. Interesting. That husband and wife went on to support the cause without fully participating. They cheered on their friends who charged forward and even made cookies to send to the chairman of the team.

The end. :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Recipe: The 4 Cs (Chocolate Chip Coconut Coffee) Cookies

I made some cookies a couple of weeks ago to take to friends we were visiting out of town. They were created by using a basic framework of a recipe and throwing in what I found in the cabinet that sounded good. I ended up LOVING how they came out (and consumed about a half dozen.) They received several compliments from the recipients too. Drop cookies were a nice low-maintenance change from my decorated cookies and will be making their way into my oven again very soon!

The 4 Cs (Chocolate Chip Coconut Coffee) Cookies

1 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
2 cups flour
2 cups oats (grind in the food processor or blender until they resemble a flour consistency)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 packet instant coffee
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 chocolate candy bar (such as Hershey's) finely chopped/grated
12 ounce bag chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375. Mix ground oats, flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and coffee in a bowl and set aside. Combine butter and sugars in mixing bowl, beating on medium until well combined. Add in eggs one at a time, then vanilla. Add dry ingredients slowly and mix until combined. Finally add coconut, grated chocolate bar and chocolate chips. Mix until incorporated. Scoop dough into 2 inch rounds and place onto greased baking sheet 3 inches apart. Bake for approximately 12-15 minutes. Enjoy!

Monday, November 26, 2012

1,000 or Bust!

One Preppy Cookie made it to 731 "likes" on our Facebook page without ever asking for help - THANK YOU!

Please help us get to 1,000 by sharing this page. If we can make it happen in time, OPC will do a giveaway for 2 dozen Christmas cookies as a thank you! :)

'Tis the season!

Special Second Birthday

The weekend before Thanksgiving we set out to visit our friends and celebrate their daughter's second birthday. I had asked if I could bring a "smash cake" and behold my first attempt at incorporating my cookies into such a cake.

The birthday girl's gift from me was a set of cookies to pass out at her party. There was a bright colored cupcake theme with an Elmo undertone that afternoon so these worked out well.

Of course the best part was watching to bday girl enjoy her cake (and three cookies on a stick!) Love it.

Happy Birthday sweet C! You know I adore you...and your parents too.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Breaking Dawn Party (and Cookies!)

I have a friend who takes "Twi-hard" to a new level. She has traveled to movie premiers, knows every last nuance of each book, ordered custom Twilight shoes and even hosts an amazing annual party that would make the Cullens proud. There is no detail spared at these events and though I turn into a pumpkin long before the movies premiere, I enjoy attending the party each year with the early crowd.

From decor to themed cocktails to gift bags, this party never disappoints...

Me with the hostess with the mostess:

And of course there were cookies this year:

I most likely won't be seeing the movie for a while (books > movie EVERY time for me) but wish those of you going to see it this weekend a great time.

Plus que ma propre vie.

Thank you as always MaryJo!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

This & That

I have a crazy-busy week ahead and won't be able to share much until I get through with it so I thought I'd check in and show you a few things that I have been working on.

Cookies for wedding welcome bags including monograms and wedding cakes:

Ballet birthday party cookies (some day I will share more about my long-time love of ballet but for now I just wanted to document these while I was thinking of it.)

And primary color/circle themed baby shower cookies:

Thank you Lindsey, Lisa, Char and Sarah!

This week will bring everything from Twilight to college football to legos to super heroes to 30th birthday to 2nd birthday cookies. Whew! Looking forward to sharing all of those as I go.

Have a great week everyone!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Evolution of a Fox Cookie

I always love new ideas for cookies....I know I mention that a lot but it's true. So when a friend asked me to make "cookies of a fox wearing a Tiffany blue scarf" I thougth sure, why not?

I get asked regularly how long it takes me to make decorated cookies. The answer? A long time. First and foremost the dough needs to be made and the cookies baked. Then I make the icing and tint it individually into the colors I need.

Next up is hand drawing each cookie's design on with piping tubes.

After that each cookie must be individually filled with thinned icing. There are many toothpicks and hours involved in this step.

Finally the cookies must be packaged. Again...time.

Hence why I no longer know what is going on in Nene and Tamra's lives (Real Housewives reference.) That's probably a good thing though as I love doing what I do.

I hope to do a few specific cookie tutorials come the holiday season so please stay tuned.

Thank you for the cute cookie idea Candyce - I loved it!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Happy Election Day 2012!

Growing up my dad predicted on a regular basis that I would be the first female President of our country. While I am sure many fathers feel that way, my dad seemed to genuinely believe it. Sadly for him I am still too young to take on the challenge nor do I have the qualifications. President of the PTA someday maybe? Let's face it...even that would be too much drama for me.

So I may not ever be the President but that doesn't mean that I don't enjoy researching and debating who should be. And it certainly doesn't dampen my enthusiasm for actual Election Days. Millie (named after a certain former President's dog herself) and I were in the spirit this morning.

Obligatory voting line photo at my neighborhood polling station. Cold weather and a 70 minute line didn't stop us...

Please tell me you love the sticker party favor as much as I do.

I am taking the night off from cookies to watch the coverage. My couch has been abandoned for months and will be calling my name as the votes roll in (when I am not busy baking a cake for my husband's office pot-luck lunch tomorrow which he conveniently "forgot" to tell me about until this afternoon...! If only I could phone the White House pastry chef for assistance.)

Thankful as always to be an American and have the right to vote no matter what the outcome may be.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

HAPPY Halloween!

Wishing you all a very safe and HAPPY Halloween!

Thinking of all those affected by Hurricane Sandy too. Take care of yourselves!