Monday, December 17, 2012

Holiday Break

Tonight Ben and I leave for Minnesota to be with our families for Christmas. Since I am 30 weeks pregnant we will be driving the 18+ hour trip! Hoping for great weather and no ice on the roads.

Also you may have noticed the last month and a half I cut back a bit from blogging daily to just a few days a week. I was planning on doing this in January when it will be one year of blogging for Misc Magenta and closer to the babies arrival but it just seemed to happen better last month. I still love blogging but only want to put quality posts on instead of just putting something up for the sake of blogging daily.

I will see you back here the first week in January...have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! xoxo

Friday, December 14, 2012

Favorite Four

Happy Friday...hope it has been a great week! We had Ben's brother, wife and baby in town this week. It was so fun having them here. My favorite four this week are (clockwise from top left) 1-I got my Warby Parker Home Try On glasses in the mail...such a fun company and great glasses! Can't wait to get the real ones. 2- I finished making my toffees and got them all wrapped up to give as the holidays. 3-This 'Brain Fuel' sticker on my morning banana cracked me up. 4- I brought my sister-in-law and nephew to my favorite lunch spot in Philly this week...URBN. It was all decked out for the holidays.

Have a great weekend...xoxo!

Monday, December 10, 2012

English Toffee

One of my favorite holiday I make a batch every Christmas. I found this recipe that is closest to what I remeber from growing up. Here is a little 'how to' and a few photos to help you along the way. xoxo

-1 cup butter
-1 cup sugar
-1/4 cup water
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
-1 cup chopped pecans (I use walnuts)

All the ingredients.

In a suace pan combine butter, sugar, water and salt. Use a candy thermometer and bring to 300 deg. It will be a light brown when it is ready.

Pour into an ungreased 13"x9" pan and let cool.

Melt chocolate over hot water and spread onto toffee, and sprinkle with nuts. Let cool for 2-3 hours or chill for 30 min.

Once cooled break apart and it is ready to eat!

Packaged up to give as gifts.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Favorite Four

Another busy December week done...and that much closer to Christmas! My favorite four this week (clockwise from top left) 1-A delicious afternoon treat. 2-Went to see our home team the Minnesota Timberwolves take on our new home team the 76ers...always a good time. 3-On Thursday morning St. Nicholas came for a visit...he brought me these cozy slippers along with a few other fun things for Ben, Berlin and me. 4-My girlfriends and I had a Christmas brunch and did some shopping this weekend at our favorite...Terrain!

Have a great weekend...xoxo!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Ready for Christmas!

Well we are ready for Christmas over here in Philly. We always head home to Minnesota for the holidays but we still like to get a tree for the short 3 weeks in December we are in Philly. You can see in the photo that we also have our boots out for St. Nicholas' arrival on Thursday, December 6.

Hope it is a fabulous Tuesday for you...xoxo!

Our tree.

Kraft paper wrapping for everyone.

Pretty stocking stuffer.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Favorite Four

Hope it has been a great week for you. This is my favorite time of year with all of the Christmas decorations going up, Christmas music on and our tree in the smells so good! This is also the time when Ben and I got married, 8 years ago, so that is an added plus. My favorite four this week are (clockwise from top left) 1-Ben and I went on a lunch date Friday after hearing our baby girl's heart beat at my doctors appointment...good day! 2-Love it when the Philadelphia Center City Macy's has all of it's holiday decor up in the grand festive! 3-Love getting fun snail mail...the last few months have been great with all of the 'congrats on your pregnancy cards':). 4-Dinner and games with friends...trying to enjoy the nights of going out before the baby comes.

Have a great weekend! xoxo

Monday, November 26, 2012

My Photo Albums

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend. Ben and I enjoyed having a delicious Thanksgiving dinner with friends, getting our Christmas tree and wrapping lots of gifts.

On another note I got all of my photo albums up to date this weekend....yeah! I was behind 2 years so this was a big feat. Since I left my parents house for college in 2000 I have been doing photo albums. This is what works for me...I know there are so many ways of going about it but this is what I have found that I can stick with.

I keep my photos on an external hard drive in hopes of keeping my computer from slowing down too much. Then I put them on Snapfish after I have played with them a bit to make them perfect:) I usually wait to order a batch of photos until there is a sale or free shipping...they have these kind of deals all of the time. You can see more of my process below. Happy Monday...xoxo!

I love getting these blue envelopes in the mail.

These leather albums are my go-to...

...I always get black or brown with 6 photos per page.

Once I have everything I lay out the photos by event.

After all of the photos are in their place I write a little ditty and the date next to each photo. These albums have basically been my diary for the last 12 years. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Favorite Four

Hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving and are enjoying a long weekend. My favorite four this week are (clockwise from top left) 1-Love having fresh pineapple in the house! 2-I got the invite for my 2nd shower...such a fun color and beautiful rhinestone snowflake! 3-Enjoyed a low key Thanksgiving with friends here in Philly. It was such a beautiful fall day. 4-Had hot cocoa and s'mores by the fire with friends Wednesday night...a nice start to the long weekend.

See you Monday! xoxo

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

Pepparkakor Cookies

This weekend we hosted a Sip & See for friends who just had a baby. Lots of friend came and brought so much good food...below is what I made for the party. These Scandinavian cookies remind me of the holidays and since Ben and I got married really close to Christmas my aunt made 750 of these for our wedding...thanks Carol! xoxo

2 Sticks Butter
1 1/2 Cup Sugar
3 Tbsp molasses
2 tsp Soda
1 Egg
1 Tbsp Milk
1 1/2 tsp Ginger
1 1/2 tsp Cloves
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
1 Tbsp Water
3 1/4 Cup Flour

Mix all of the ingredients together in the order given. Roll out on a breadboard and cut with favorite cookie cutter. Bake at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes...depending on thickness of dough and oven.
All of the ingredients.

After adding the butter and sugar add the molasses. 

Above is what the batter looks like right before you add the last ingredient...flour.

I had to use lots of flour on my rolling pin and dough so it would roll out nicely.

Then cut out your shapes.

Ready to eat!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Favorite Four

Happy Friday! It has been a short work week here since I was in Minnesota for part of it...but I'm still just as excited for Friday. My favorite four this week are (clockwise from top left) 1-It was so good being home in Minnesota for a long weekend. On my last day there it snowed...the snow is so beautiful at my parent's house with all of the evergreen trees. 2-Loved having a long overdue game night with friends. 3-Ben and I spent some down time at a coffee shop and went to a movie this week...some things we are trying to do more of before the baby comes. 4-I started the belly panel at Destination Maternity this week. Yeah for free maternity clothes!

Have a great weekend...xoxo!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

25 Weeks

I got back late Monday night from a wonderful time visiting family in Minnesota and Iowa. It was a great break but always nice to be back in the swing of things at home today. My craving this week happens to be oranges...a nice and healthy alternative to most of the pregnancy cravings I have had. See you tomorrow...xoxo!

Photo taken at the Des Moines Art Center.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Favorite Four

Happy Friday! I'm posting from my parents house in Minnesota today. I'm home for a family girl's weekend. It will be a fun weekend hanging out with my sister, mom, grandma and aunt. My favorite four this week (clockwise from top left) 1- Going out with the ladies last weekend in Philly and then getting my latest craving...milkshakes! 2-I got the swatches for the baby room this week...I'm so glad I love it in person as much as I did online. 3-Home-made blueberry muffins...yum! 4-Some fun decor at my parent's it here:)

Have a great weekend! xoxo

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

24 Weeks

Wow this pregnancy is going by so fast. My latest cravings are Cheetos and milkshakes. Ha! Have a great Wednesday xoxo!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Fall Camping

Here are a few fall forest/foliage photos from our camping trip last weekend. We lucked out to get this trip in before the hurricane and cold came. xoxo

Monday, November 5, 2012

Reading Terminal Market

This weekend Ben and I had friends over for a dinner party...but not any ordinary dinner. I was inspired by this month's Philadelphia Magazine article on the Reading Terminal Market and thought we could incorporate it. I had been here tons of times but never to actually grocery shop. So I made up a menu for the night and a shopping list in advance.  When our friends got to our place we took them to the market with us and got all of the ingredients for the night. It was fun to pick from all of the fresh meats, cheeses, breads and desserts together.

Our menu for the night was classic spaghetti and meatballs with bread and a ceasar salad. We had cheese for an appetizer and cannolis for dessert. It was a fun night. Have a great Monday! xoxo
The Philadelphia Magazine inspiration.

At the Market.

So many delicious cheese options and meat cuts.

Ready to eat after we made the meal. 

Cannolis for dessert!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Favorite Four

Hey readers! Hope you made it through the week ok...we had a hurricane out here and so many are still recovering. We (as in Philadelphia) were fortunate to be in the eye of the storm which means we didn't get hit as hard as the rest of the area. It was definitely a little scary though.

My favorite four this week (clockwise from top left) 1-Had a fun weekend camping with friends. 2-Loved how our loft building came together and shared food etc during the hurricane. 3- My favorite is that my house smells like an Anthropologie store...thanks to this candle! 4-On Wednesday Ben and I helped with a Halloween outreach our church put on the for community. This was the fun backdrop we used for the photo booth...a big hit!

Have a great weekend! xoxo

Monday, October 29, 2012

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

We had a fun weekend camping with friends in central Pennsylvania...and now we are preparing for Frankenstorm (aka hurricane Sandy) which is supposed to hit Philadelphia today! I prepared by making chocolate chip cookies, buying milk, and making lots of ice for the cooler in case the power goes out.

Here is my new favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, thanks to my sister in law. xoxo

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies (from All Recipes)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons hot water
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
All the ingredients.

Cream together the butter, sugar and brown sugar until smooth.

Beat in the eggs and stir in vanilla.

Add baking soda to hot water until dissolved then add to batter along with salt.

Stir in flour and chocolate chips...I used 3 cups of chocolate chips:)

Drop large spoonfuls onto ungreased pan.

Bake for 10 minutes at 350 deg. I had to bake mine for 12 minutes for the edges to get brown.

Ready to eat!