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DECK THE HOLIDAY'S: 01/12/14

Sunday, January 12, 2014

DIY ANTIQUE CAKE STAND!




   This diy comes from www.shanty-2-chic.com .  An inventive idea to have around for the holidays and every day to put pinecones, nuts, faux fruit or any other decorative item you can think of.  Have fun!



Hey Guys!! I spent my weekend with the fam in Lubbock and made it home just in time to share my next project with you. A few weeks ago I saw a picture of an antique cake stand in a magazine and was instantly inspired to copy… although this shanty is far from antique:) Here’s what I did…
I started by purchasing my supplies. I found three great hat boxes at Hobby Lobby at 50% off. I paid less than $12 for all three… woohoo!!






I also bought 2 unfinished wood candlesticks and a bag of 6 little candlesticks. This picture shows 3… you only need 2.






I also had my Gorilla Glue Epoxy handy… Hot glue will not cut it on this project! I had to pull out my big guns…






For this project I only used the tops of the hat boxes. My first step was to glue my candlesticks to the tops. I added glue to each candlestick and started building…






My little candlesticks became the feet for the bottom stand…





Still building…






I used another little candlestick for the top and glued an unfinished wood finial to it. You can find these at Lowe’s on the trim aisle.







Now to add it to the top…






My next step was to get this baby one color! My color of choice… Rustoleum American Accents Heirloom White spray paint. I took it out in the garage and gave it a couple of coats.
When my paint dried I was wanting this to appear antique, so I distressed the candlesticks using my 3M block sander…






I then used a Shanty Sisters favorite… Ralph Lauren Smoke Glaze over the entire stand. You just paint it on and wipe it off with a cloth. You can leave as much on as you like to get the finish you like best.










Almost done…






I do love natural lighting for my photos so much better, but when you finish your project at 9:00pm that typically is not an option. Sorry!
My final step was to dress it up. I fought the urge to cover it in Christmas goodies! But, I did “Winterize” it a bit. I picked up some pine cones from a house down the street and added just a few walnuts on there as well. The best part about this… You won’t have to hide this project in a closet 10 months out of the year! It can be decorated for every season! What do you think??



ANGEL FOOD CUPCAKES WITH COOL WHIP FROSTING!




   This recipe comes from www.clairekcreations.com .  Two things that always go well together, cool whip and angel food cake (possibly with some strawberries)!



Today I am very excited to play host to my very first guest post! I discovered Mother Thyme a few months ago and I love reading her fabulous recipes. She’s the woman behind the delicious tomato pasta sauce and choc-ginger biscuits. Please make her feel welcome and be sure to stop by and check out all the fabulous recipes on Mother Thyme.




Hi everyone! I’m Jennifer from Mother Thyme. I am so thrilled to be guest posting on my foodie friend Claire’s fabulous site today!
Today I will be sharing with you a light and refreshing dessert that you can enjoy without the guilt, Angel Food Cupcakes. These cupcakes are light and airy and made with a few simple ingredients such as egg white, confectioners sugar, sugar, salt and vanilla. The egg whites are whipped to form stiff peaks that makes this batter light and airy.
Sure I could have topped these cupcakes off with a creamy, eat with a spoon buttercream frosting, but that defeats the purpose of composing a light cupcake. My first thought was to just add dollops of cool whip on top of these cupcakes with slices of strawberries, but after some experimenting and recipe developing I came up with this creamy, delicious cool whip frosting that is flavored with vanilla and a hint of almond. This frosting is creamy, tasty, and delicious without all the extra calories and fat. So instead of having one cupcake, let’s have two (or maybe three)!
Thanks for letting me share my recipe here with you today. Be sure to stop by and say Hi to me at Mother Thyme. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!
Enjoy!




Angel Food Cupcakes with Vanilla Almond Cool Whip Frosting
(Click here for a print friendly version)


Yield: 1 ½ dozen cupcakes
Angel Food Cupcakes
Ingredients
12 large egg whites (about 1 ½ cups)
1 ½ teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup confectioners sugar (icing sugar)
½ cup sugar
1 cup cake flour (plain flour)


Directions

Preheat oven to 350F degrees (160C). Line cupcake tin with liners, set aside.
Using an electric mixer with whisk attachment combine egg whites, cream of tartar, vanilla extract and salt in a large bowl. Blend on medium speed for 4-5 minutes until stiff peaks form. Gradually add in sugars and continue to blend until just combined. By hand fold in cake flour.
Pour batter into cupcake liners filling ¾ full. Bake for 15-18 minutes until cake tester comes out clean and top is firm. Do not overbake.
Cool on wire racks completely before frosting.
Vanilla Almond Cool Whip Frosting
Ingredients
1 3.4oz (90-120g) package of vanilla instant pudding
½ cup milk
½ teaspoon almond extract
1 8oz tub (240) of cool whip, thawed (fat free, light or regular)

In a medium bowl combine pudding, milk and almond extract until smooth. Fold in cool whip until combined. Frost as desired.







HOGMANAY IN SCOTLAND!!




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The Origins of Hogmanay
A guid New Year to ane an` a` and mony may ye see!
   While New Year's Eve is celebrated around the world, the Scots have a long rich heritage associated with this event - and have their own name for it, Hogmanay.
   There are many theories about the derivation of the word "Hogmanay". The Scandinavian word for the feast preceding Yule was "Hoggo-nott" while the Flemish words (many have come into Scots) "hoog min dag" means "great love day". Hogmanay could also be traced back to the Anglo-Saxon, Haleg monath, Holy Month, or the Gaelic, oge maidne, new morning. But the most likely source seems to be the French. "Homme est nĂ©" or "Man is born" while in France the last day of the year when gifts were exchanged was "aguillaneuf" while in Normandy presents given at that time were "hoguignetes". Take your pick!
   In Scotland a similar practice to that in Normandy was recorded, rather disapprovingly, by the Church.
"It is ordinary among some Plebians in the South of Scotland, to go about from door to door upon New Year`s Eve, crying Hagmane."
Scotch Presbyterian Eloquence, 1693.

Torchlight Procession
Hogmanay Traditional Celebrations
    Historians believe that we inherited the celebration from the Vikings who, coming from even further north than ourselves, paid even more attention to the passing of the shortest day. In Shetland, where the Viking influence was strongest, New Year is called Yules, from the Scandinavian word.    It may not be widely known but Christmas was not celebrated as a festival and virtually banned in Scotland for around 400 years, from the end of the 17th century to the 1950s. The reason for this has its roots in the Protestant Reformation when the Kirk portrayed Christmas as a Popish or Catholic feast and therefore had to be banned. Many Scots had to work over Christmas and their winter solstice holiday was therefore at New Year when family and friends gathered for a party and exchange presents, especially for the children, which came to be called hogmanay.
   There are traditions before midnight such as cleaning the house on 31st December (including taking out the ashes from the fire in the days when coal fires were common). There is also the superstition to clear all your debts before "the bells" at midnight.


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   Immediately after midnight it is traditional to sing Robert Burns' "For Auld Lang Syne". Burns claimed it was based on an earlier fragment and certainly the tune was in print over 80 years before he published his version in 1788.

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and auld lang syne
For auld lang syne, my dear, for auld lang syne,
We'll take a cup o kindness yet, for auld lang syne."


   An integral part of the Hogmanay partying, which continues very much today, is to welcome friends and strangers, with warm hospitality and of course a kiss to wish everyone a Guid New Year. The underlying belief is to clear out the vestiges of the old year, have a clean break and welcome in a young, New Year on a happy note.
   "First footing" (that is, the "first foot" in the house after midnight) is still common in Scotland. To ensure good luck for the house, the first foot should be male, dark (believed to be a throwback to the Viking days when blond strangers arriving on your doorstep meant trouble) and should bring symbolic coal, shortbread, salt, black bun and whisky. These days, however, whisky and perhaps shortbread are the only items still prevalent (and available).
   "Handselling" was the custom of gift giving on the first Monday of the New Year but this has died out.

Torchlight Procession
Torch of The Bonfire Ceremonies
   The magical Firework display and torchlight procession in Edinburgh - and throughout many cities in Scotland - is reminiscent of the ancient custom at Scottish Hogmanay pagan parties hundreds of years ago.
   The traditional New Year ceremony of yesteryear would involve people dressing up in the hides of cattle and running around the village being hit by sticks. The festivities would also include the lighting of bonfires, rolling blazing tar barrels down the hill and tossing torches. Animal hide was also wrapped around sticks and ignited which produced a smoke that was believed to be very effective to ward off evil spirits. The smoking stick was also known as a Hogmanay.
   Some of these customs do continue, especially in the small, older communities in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland where tradition, along with language and dialect are kept alive and well. On the Isle of Lewis, in the Outer Hebrides, the young boys form themselves into opposing bands, the leader of each wears a sheep skin, while a member carries a sack. The bands move through the village from house to house reciting a Gaelic rhyme. On being invited inside, the leader walks clockwise around the fire, while everyone hits the skin with sticks. The boys would be given some bannocks - fruit buns - for their sack before moving on to the next house.


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   One of the most spectacular Fire ceremonies takes place in Stonehaven, just south of Aberdeen on the North East coast. Giant fireballs, weighing up to 20 pounds are lit and swung around on five feet long metal poles, requiring 60 men to carry them as they march up and down the High Street. The origin of the pre-Christian custom is believed to be linked to the Winter Solstice of late December with the fireballs signifying the power of the sun, to purify the world by consuming evil spirits.
   And it is worth remembering that January 2nd is a holiday in Scotland as well as the first day of the year - to give us all time to recover from a week of merry-making and celebration, all part of Scotland's fascinating cultural legacy of ancient customs and traditions surrounding the pagan festival of Hogmanay.