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Terrific Tuesday Photos

Happy Tuesday! This is one of my favorite days of the week! I love sharing my photography with you guys and I love love participating in all of the photo contest out here in blogland every week!

Here are some Summery Travel photos that I have taken! Hope you enjoy them!

I took this photo during my summer studying abroad. I spent a quarter studying photography at SCAD's campus in Lacoste France and was able to take a few trips to Paris!

Does it get any better than this? Key West, Florida...

This one was taken in Michigan - during our "lighthouse tour"...

BWS tips button


Matty Monday - Sort of...

Matty is taking this Monday off for a much needed vacay! So - in honor of the upcoming holiday I decided to round up a few really cool cupcakes!

I found these beauties at One Ordinary Day:

These yummy fruit topped ice cream creations came from Annie's Eats

And - the ever lovely Bakerella made these. The story behind them is really awesome!

Head over and check out all of these Patriotic treats!

And the Winner is of the $40 gift card is...

My random number generator thingy picked # 20!

Congratulations to Laura @ Rada Rhythm a Rhyme!

She said:

I would use it towards the Designer Catbox Litter Box Enclosure in Espresso! Had no idea these things existed but I really NEED and WANT it! Thanks for the giveaway!

I's sending an email your way!

Awesome Giveaway @ Breakfast Club Photography!

Breakfast Club Photography has another great giveaway going on! Just 4 Photogs has offered up another one of their awesome camera necklaces - they are so dang cute! Head on over and check it out!

$40 CSN Gift Card Giveaway!!!

I'm extending the giveaway until Monday!! I have had a really busy week and just haven't had the time to sit down and pick a winner - so there is still time to enter!!

I was contacted earlier this week by CSN - they want me to do a second giveaway! This time instead of picking a particular product to giveaway I am going to let you choose what you want! I have recently been made aware of their amazing lighting website! We are in the market for some new lights in our kitchen area and they have some really great stuff!!

Here is what you need to do to enter the giveaway!

1. For one entry become a follower and leave me a comment letting me know that you are! If you are already a follower leave a comment letting me know!

2. For one entry head over to CSN and tell me (in a separate comment from the followers) what you would buy with the Gift Card.

2. For 2 entries head over to my photography facebook page and become a "liker".

Each person can have up to 4 entries!!

Giveaway ends one week from today on June 23 @ 11:59 pm!

Terrific Tuesday Photo

This weeks photo is in honor of father's day! And - I am guest judging over at Trendy Treehouse this week!! I am sooooo very excited to see all of the "Father's Love" themed photos this week!

Head over to Trendy Treehouse and check all of them out!

This is of a dad giving away his daughter at a recent wedding that I shot:

The next two are of my dad and my granddad - fishing on the lake!




Matty Monday - Week 6 - Brown Sugar Pound Cake with Irish Cream Frosting Cupcakes


This week I made the Brown Sugar Pound Cake with Irish Cream Frosting Cupcakes!

Technically these are the Saint Patrick’s Day cupcakes, but the Bailey’s Irish cream frosting sounded too good to wait till next march 17th! Instead of crystallized four leafed covers, we opted for more practical (but cute) tartan paper cups. Hope you enjoy them!

Here is the recipe:

3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup ( 2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup buttermilk
Baileys Irish Cream Icing

Makes 28 cupcakes

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line pan with baking cups. Wisk together flour, banking powder, and salt.
2. With an electric mixer on high-medium, cream butter and brown sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scrap bowl as needed. Add flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and beating until combined after each.
3. Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each 3/4 full. Bake, about 25 minutes rotating halfway through, until cake tester comes out clean and golden brown. Cool on wire racks for 10 minutes, and then turn out cupcakes onto racks and cool completely.

Bailey's Irish Cream Icing

1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1lb confectioners sugar sifted
3 tablespoons Bailey's Irish cream liquor (you may substitute milk if desired)

1. Cream butter and shortening with electric mixer. Add vanilla and Baileys Irish cream. Gradually add sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Tint icing a pale green color.
2. Using decorator tip 1M, pipe a swirl on top of each cupcake. Top with shamrock icing decoration and sprinkles.

This recipe ices 1 1/2 dozen cupcakes.

Another Awesome Giveaway

Don't forget about my really cool $40 CSN Gift Card Giveaway!!

Breakfast Club Photography is hosting a fabulous giveaway! They are giving away a pom pom blanket from Oops I Knit It Again!!!

Oops I Knit It Again has some really really awesome stuff!! You should go and check them out!!! And head over to the etsy store to see all of the things she makes and sells!!

Terrific Tuesday Photos - Week 6!

This weeks photo is of a sweet baby girl I recently photographed! I just loved her sweet little smile - while she was taking a little rest from posing...


Sweet Shot Day

P.S. - Stay tuned for a giveaway coming up this week!!!!

Matty Monday - Week 5 - Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes!


This week we made the Chocolate Salted Caramel cupcakes, the recipe calls for mini cupcakes, but I don’t have that pan yet, so the regular size would have to do.

Making your own caramel may sound intimating, but was easy and is the best caramel I’ve ever had! WOW!

Double bonus, when you scoop out the center of the cupcake for the caramel, you get a bite size snack, which we consumed immediately.

This cupcake is very chocolaty so if you need a chocolate fix this is it, have a glass of milk nearby!

This recipe is somewhat straight forward compared to the other recipes, surprisingly, but created the most dirty dishes!

Here's the recipe!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup warm water


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line mini muffin tin with paper liners. Whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. With mixer on low speed, add eggs, buttermilk, oil, extract, and the water; beat until smooth and combined.

Spoon the batter into liners about two-thirds full. Bake approximately 15 minutes, or until tester comes out clean. Transfer tins to wire racks and allow to cool for 10 minutes; turn cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 1 month in air tight containers.

To finish, use a paring knife to cut a cone-shaped piece (about 1/2 inch deep) from the center of each cupcake and throw away the pieces. Spoon 1 to 2 teaspoons warm Salted Caramel Filling into each hollowed-out cupcake. You will notice the caramel will sink into the cupcake a little, just fill it up a bit more. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt over filling.

Use a pastry bag with a medium open-star tip (I used Wilton #1M) and pipe Dark Chocolate Frosting onto each cupcake, swirling tip and releasing as you pull up to form a peak. Garnish each cupcake with a pinch of sea salt. Cupcakes are best eaten the day they are filled and frosted. Store at room temperature in airtight containers - do NOT refrigerate. Enjoy!

Salted Caramel Filling
2 1/2 cups sugar
2/3 cup water
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
2 1/2 teaspoons sea salt, preferably fleur de sel


Heat sugar with the water and corn syrup in a heavy saucepan over high, stirring occasionally, until syrup is clear; clip a candy thermometer to side of pan and stop stirring.

Cook until syrup comes to a boil, washing down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush as needed. Boil, gently swirling pan occasionally, until mixture is caramelized and just reaches 360°F. Remove rom heat and slowly pour in cream; stir with a wooden spoon until smooth. Stir in sea salt.

Use immediately; if caramel begins to harden reheat gently until pourable.

Dark Chocolate Frosting
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon boiling water
2 1/4 cups (4 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds best-quality semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled


Combine cocoa and boiling water, stirring until cocoa has dissolved.

With electric mixer on medium-high, beat butter, confectioners' sugar, and salt until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed to low. Add melted and cooled chocolate, beating until combined and scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in the cocoa mixture.

Frosting can be refrigerated up to 5 days, or frozen up to 1 month in an air tight container. Before using, bring to room temperature and beat on low speed until smooth again.

P.S. I’m pretty sure Martha has the photographs so carefully controlled and/or later retouched, that the home kitchen could never produce the same coloration as the photos from the cupcake cookbook, just fyi, don’t be discouraged when your frosting and caramel is not a dark and luxurious as hers, etc…

see you next week!


Our First Garden!!

I am so dang proud of our very first garden! It was originally started out to be an herb garden - but my grandparents talked me in to a few more things. We now have cucumbers, zucchini, tomatoes, herbs, hibiscus trees, geraniums, and my absolute favorite - my lavender from Provence!

Here is how it all started:

While we were getting the ground ready to plant

the seeds were growing in the greenhouse

This is what it looked like before we planted anything:

Everything is transplanted from the greenhouse and all wet after a good rain

A few weeks later:

Isn't this basil gorgeous (and soooo yummy!)

Here are the first products!!

More picture to come later on when the tomatoes are ready!

Terrific Tuesday Photo Week 6!!

This weeks photo is of a little girl I had a session with over the weekend - such a cutie and easy as pie to work with!

Sweet Shot Day

Matty Monday Week 4!! Roasted Banana Cupcakes with Honey Cinnamon Forsting!

Hello all!

This week I made the Roasted Banana Cupcakes, mostly because all I had to buy was the Bananas! Roasting the bananas was easy and fun! They are great, very dense little cakes, though the richness of the icing may be a little to much on this one...

Makes 12


* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
* 3/4 cup sugar
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
* 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 ripe bananas), plus 1 whole banana, for
garnish (optional)
* 2 large eggs
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


* 1 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
* 1 tablespoon honey
* 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
2. Make a well in center of flour mixture. In well, mix together butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir to incorporate flour mixture (do not overmix). Dividing evenly, spoon batter into muffin cups.
3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan; cool completely on a wire rack. Spread tops with Honey-Cinnamon Frosting. Just before serving, peel and slice banana into rounds, and place one on each cupcake, if desired.


In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat confectioners' sugar, unsalted butter, honey, and ground cinnamon until smooth, 4 to 5 minutes

See ya next week!


Fun Find Friday with "Sew Cute" Gifts and More!

Today's Fun Find is "Sew Cute" Gifts and More! Go Here to check it out!

Check out all of the super cute things that Kitizie does and she does all of the monogramming too - and YES she does ship out of town for all of you not local to GA! Everything is quality made (I have recently purchased 2 totes and they are fabulous) and super affordable!

P.S. Head over to the "Sew Cute" Gifts and More fan page on Facebook and become a "liker" for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate!

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