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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Nautical napkins 'n' plates

The girls and I ran over to the local party favors store and they had these too-cute napkins and plates in (what else?!?) NAUTICAL prints :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

By the Seaside

As we stand beside the ocean tide,
may our love always be as constant and unchanging
as these never-ending waves that pour beneath our feet,
flowing endlessly from the depths of the sea;
your love came softly upon my heart,
just as the foam comes softly upon the sand,
and just as there will never be a morning
without the ocean's flow,
so there will never be a day
without my love for you.

(author unknown)

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fun anchor items

My mother-in-law prepared a cute gift of anchor-themed items, including a pack of note cards, envelopes, a stamp and tissues. Just had to share :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

PB & Boysenberry Bars

This past weekend I put two more dessert recipes to the test and I (along with my 'taste-testers') loved 'em both! The first is a twist on the ol' PB&J sandwich with a peanut butter and boysenberry preserves treat. It's sooooo tasty!


Makes about 3 dozen

* 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
* 3 cups flour
* 1 1/2 cups sugar
* 2 large eggs
* 2 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter
* 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1 1/2 cups boysenberry preserves
* 2/3 cup roughly chopped nuts, if desired


1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch pan with butter/spray, and line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease the parchment, and coat inside of pan with flour; set aside. Place butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. On medium speed, add eggs and peanut butter; beat until combined, about 2 minutes.

2. Whisk together salt, baking powder, and flour. Add to bowl of mixer on low speed; combine. Add vanilla. Transfer two-thirds of mixture to prepared pan; spread evenly using your fingers. Using spatula, spread boysenberry preserves on top of peanut-butter mixture.

3. Dollop remaining third of peanut-butter mixture on top of boysenberry and again, use your fingers to spread out mixture evenly. Sprinkle with nuts if desired.

4. Bake until golden, about 45 minutes. Cool fully before cutting into bars.


Note: original recipe (though very slightly modified here) from

6-Layer Bars - Easy and Excellent

Last week's baking included my hand at these 6-layer bars (originally 7-layer but I decided against the nuts). They were simple...and simply excellent! However, I will try to play around with the recipe, as the base of these bars was far too thin...maybe I'll include some oats in the next go 'round.

1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 can sweetened condensed milk
6 ounces chocolate chips
6 ounces butterscotch chips
6 ounces coconut flakes

Melt butter in bottom of 9 x 13 inch cake pan. Press graham cracker crumbs into pan. Pour can of sweetened condensed milk over graham cracker crumbs. Sprinkle chocolate chips and butterscotch chips and coconut over mixture. Bake at 350F degrees until coconut browns, (approximately 15 minutes). Let cool.

Note: original recipe (though very slightly modified here) from

Sailin' fun scrapbook stickers

This past weekend I went to the local craft supplies store in search of miscellaneous items and I stopped in the scrap-booking isle to see what they had. I'm not a scrap-booker myself but I do enjoy adorning my letters to my deployed honey with navy and nautical themed stickers...and that's exactly what I found!

And, or course, I had my camera with me in the store so I took some pics and wanted to share. (sorry if some of them aren't totally clear)

Hubby's home away from home...

While my husband is on deployment, he's spending his six months on the USS Abraham Lincoln. This aircraft carrier is home to thousands of sailors and is truly a city in and of itself. I've included some amazing photos, all courtesy of

I'm a proud wife and a proud citizen of the United I just had to share :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Sailor costumes gone sexy

I don't know why it seems like every year the female halloween costumes get raunchier and raunchier. But don't get me wrong, I'm not against flirty costumes...and I managed to find a few that were sexy without crossing over the thin line to skanky. And, of course, they're girly sailors!

I've included two of my faves, courtesy of

Dating my spouse (on the cheap)

Being a young couple, my husband and I have had to be conscious of our spending. But, we've also made it a priority to have have weekly date nights.

One of our more common date nights involves just taking a drive together. Now, my husband's city driving can sometimes be a bit scary but when we go on a date night, it's a different driving style (thankfully).

Anyway, my husband always ends up driving me to a local hidden gem. With the exception of the cost of gas, our drive-date nights give us a great opportunity to talk and enjoy each others company without hurting our budget.

Our other regular date night consists of grabbing a hot beverage and browsing Barnes and Noble. Sometimes, the Starbucks even has board games for its customers, something that makes the time together even more enjoyable.

No matter what we do together, it's important just to get out of the house and out of the daily grind of things. Dating your spouse is important no matter how many years you've been together. I truly believe in the saying: "What you did to get 'em is what you do to keep 'em"

Have any unique date night ideas to share? Enlighten us!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

PB & Chocolate Cake -- double delish!

Sunday was my baking day; one of my new dessert recipes included the following: a super moist PB&Chocolate Cake. My taste-testers enjoyed it, so I hope you will too!

~~ The Cake ~~

1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® yellow cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs

1. Heat oven to 350°F (or 325°F for dark or nonstick pans). Generously grease bottom of large 12-inch round cake pan with shortening or cooking spray.
2. In a large bowl, beat cake mix, water, 1/2 cup peanut butter, the oil and eggs with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan.
3. Bake 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Run knife around sides of pans to loosen cakes; remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely.

The icing is a simple homemade chocolate butter-cream. Be sure to use real butter (no margarine here!) and mix well for a creamy, whipped texture. Apply generously.

If desired, top with chopped peanuts, almonds, walnuts or even crumbled peanut better cups. What a delicious finishing touch!

Note: original recipe (though very slightly modified here) from

Chewy S'mores Bars -- mmmm'mmmmm!!

Spent the better half of Sunday in the kitchen, trying my hand at a few new dessert recipes. They turned out to be De-lish so I thought I'd share...

* 1 cup sugar
* 1 cup butter, softened
* 2 large egg
* 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1 1/2 cup crushed graham crackers
* 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 2 teaspoon baking powder
* half a bag of milk chocolate chips
* a jar of marshmallow creme

1.Grease an 9-inch-square baking pan. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
2.In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract. Add the crushed graham crackers, flour, salt, and baking powder and beat until well mixed, stopping occasionally to scrape the sides of the bowl.
3.Spoon half the dough into the pan and spread evenly with your fingertips. Break the chocolate into pieces and arrange over the dough. Spread a layer of marshmallow creme over the chocolate. Flatten the remaining dough into pancakes and lay them over the marshmallow.
4.Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let the bars cool before serving.

Note: original recipe (though very slightly modified here) from Disney Family Fun Magazine

Friday, October 1, 2010

Swarovski pieces with an ocean feel

I love jewelry from Swarovski and just days before my husband left for Navy boot camp in February of this year, he purchased me crystal anchor necklace. I later used that as inspiration for my first tattoo (I'll save that for another entry).

Anyway, Swarovski has moved on to their fall/winter collection but they still have a few pieces that have an ocean feel...all of which I love.