Sunday Snaps! Janu-Where Are You Going?!

We’re over half way through January now if you can believe!

The past week has been nearly -40 with windchill so I’ve been stuck inside my little house. I’ve got a ton of fun projects on the go, so I’m far from bored even with the crazy chill! Soon it’ll be sunny and I’ll be jumping amongst the flowers, so for right now I’m just trying to enjoy the relaxy inside time I have! Here’s what I’ve been up to:

Took down the tree! My living room looks so empty now. But not sad… because that just means fresh starts and space to fill!

I just got that Hello Kitty Barbie way up there! Haven’t been a huge fan of the Barbie’s from the past couple of years, but I couldn’t resist this collab! It’s really been reigniting my Barbie love so I feel there may be a few new Barbie’s in the future…!

Big Progress on the Mood Blanket! Here it is after 18 days~ I’m LOVING the colours! This is just going to be the first row when all is done, but I still need to stitch them together.

I also have at least 5 other big knitting projects on the go too! More fruit plush, a bowl of candy, Topaz the Unicorn stuffed toy, Hello Kitty purse, and more! A project for this year is finishing up my craft room so I can get all of the projects and yarn off my living room floor!

#DressUpYourPetDay was on January 14th. Sugar attempted to be a butterfly!! Lol! This was as successful as I got at snapping her in the costume before I ran a marathon trying to catch her!

I’m also still feeling the flour power~ even though I told myself that I needed to take a break for a couple of weeks so my dresses could loosen up a bit! 😉 I made these delicious hamburger buns (recipe from All Recipes) the other day which are better than store bought!

Just trying to stay magical and enjoy the month before it completely flies by!

Lots of love! Erika xoxo

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25 Days of Christmas Baking: Day 13 – Sugar Cookies

This December is the most festive I have felt since I was a kid. All of this sugar and spice is really helping to bring out that extra bit of holiday magic!

Continuing with my Christmas Baking Challenge, I spent all of today in my little kitchen baking the ultimate Christmas cookie – the sugar cookie! Although cookie decorating seems so intimidating when you stare at all of the beautiful cookie art on Pinterest, I promise it’s so easy to create your own decorated sugar cookies! Here’s my favourite sugar cookie and royal icing recipe.

This year, Hello Kitty is decked out in Santa hats and festive bows and ready to bring happiness (and a delicious buttery crunch) to all!

What You Need

Cookies

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 3/4 sticks (200 grams) of unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • pinch of salt

Icing

  • 6 egg whites
  • 4 cups (1 pound) icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • food colouring (I use gel based)

yields 24 cookies using a large cookie cutter / 48 cookies using a small cookie cutter

Directions

Baking

  • Cream the sugar and butter together until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla until combined.
  • Add in the flour and salt until fully incorporated, and the cookie dough will come together in a big dough ball.
  • Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and flatten into your hands into a flat disk. Wrap it up in plastic wrap and put in fridge for 20 minutes (this makes it much easier to work with).
  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line your baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • Roll out your dough on a floured surface. Using a floured cookie cutter, cut out your shapes (1/4 inch thick) and carefully transfer them to the baking sheet.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until golden brown and then let them completely cool.

Royal Icing

  • To make the icing, add in the icing sugar, and then add in the egg whites and lemon juice and then blend with a hand or stand mixer on high until light and fluffy (5-10 minutes). Cover with a wet cloth or in an air tight container until ready to use (or it will harden!)
  • When ready to decorate, separate your icing into separate bowls and colour as appropriate for your design.
  • You will need to further separate some of your coloured icing to do the flooding – that is the thinner icing used to fill in the areas! To do this just add a teaspoon of water at a time into the mixture.
  • Put your thicker icing into piping bags and your thinner icing into squeeze bottles and go forth to decorate!

Decorating

  • With a thin piping tip, pipe your outlines using the thicker icing.
  • Then with the squeeze bottle, pipe the thinner flood icing. Use a flat knife or toothpick to smooth it out up to those thick icing borders that you made. Add on any sprinkles or decorations at this point.
  • Let the icing completely dry (may take a few hours). Then you can add your final top piping if your design calls for it! If you add royal icing on top of royal icing it will spread slightly.

Just be aware that cookie decorating is labour intensive! From the start with baking the cookies, to the final detail of the cookies it took me OVER eight hours of baking (not counting the cleaning)! So if you’re a beginner like me, this is definitely not a quick evening project! But every single minute was enjoyable.

I’m so full of sugar now that I’m definitely going to dream of sugarplums dancing!!


Other Tips and Tricks

How to Decorate Cookies Guide from Betty Crocker

Christmas Sugar Cookie Ideas

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31 things that made me feel lucky in March!

Wow can you believe it’s the END OF MARCH?! This month really has just zipped by. Going to try a new blog feature ~ a happy wonderful thing that happened for each and every day of the month!

  1. It’s officially SPRING!
  2. Warm weather is here
  3. Days are getting looooong and bright!
  4. Snow is (almost) no longer here!
  5. Finally got a crown on my chipped tooth and it looks AMAZING
  6. Spent a lot of time just relaxing with family!
  7. Took a couple of days off of work
  8. …and didn’t even feel bad about it!
  9. Started training to run the full marathon (takes place in June)!
  10. Ran 21.1 kilometers (a whole half marathon) this morning and it felt great.
  11. I’ve been spotting a bunch of deer and geese on my runs! Definitely missed seeing these guys!
  12. Enjoying exploring new places with just my feet!
  13. Started drinking far more water (still need to cut the Diet Coke a bit!)
  14. Baked a lot this month
  15. Made homemade pizza as well
  16. Thank goodness for all the running because my appetite is wild and I love it
  17. I also cleaned out my freezer finally and it’s so roomy in there now! Hurrah for adulting!
  18. Stopped watching the news obsessively (still aware, just don’t need it affecting my whole mood)
  19. Got lucky with some good thrift hauls!
  20. Including some new Hello Kitty plushies (can never have too many friends ;))
  21. Started a toy Instagram and I’m really enjoying posting on it and meeting new folks!
  22. Bought Bob’s Burgers on DVD and have been binging like mad
  23. Also getting back into video gaming!
  24. Spent most of yesterday playing Pokemon Pearl
  25. Video games and geekery is inspiring a lot of my crafting lately – I created some Mario felties and Animal Crossing felties and blogged about them
  26. Bought the materials to start perler beading
  27. Successfully put up the canopy bed in my bedroom!
  28. Which means another room in the dream house is done (one room left to go!)
  29. My cat lets me sleep through the whole night! 🙂 (knock on wood with this one!)
  30. So yes, a busy month and definitely no boredom here!
  31. My schedule for April is even more jam-packed, and I’m excited to get going!
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Things I’m Loving Thursday! Hello Kitty!

My first memories of Hello Kitty were back in the early 90s with an adorable little show called Hello Kitty and Friends which aired on YTV here in Canada! They were a series of short episodes based on popular fairytales – like Snow White and my favourite Alice and Wonderland. Do you remember this?!?

I remember waking up BRIGHT and early to catch them and one of my strongest childhood memories was being absolutely terrified of the Big Clock episode!

Sanrio has been dousing the world in PURE KAWAII CUTENESS since the 1970s, and despite being a lifelong fan, I only started avidly collecting Hello Kitty stuff back in 2015/2016. Before that you’ll be surprised to know that I was living a very frugal minimalist life (I’ve really made up for it since then ;))!

I think I have a couple of hundred Kitty (and and her friends!) items now – from purses, plushies, stationery, to my microwave, books, and a toilet paper cover… anything you can IMAGINE (I’ll catalogue it all eventually)! She’s an icon for positivity and fills me with pure nostalgic happiness and makes it impossible to have a bad day anymore!

So are you ready to fall down the rabbit hole into her cute little world?!

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Sunday SNAPS!

Here are some pics of what I was up to this week! Probably easier to share my craft-ventures in a sum up post rather than a ton of posts.

This was a good but very busy week… and it was FLIPPIN COLD here! COLDER THAN MINUS 40 celsius this morning with windchill (for the American folks conveniently that’s also -40 Fahrenheit!) Now I’m from Winnipeg, Canada, which has at times been colder than Mars, but that’s still not something you ever get used to! So I’ve been stuck inside most of the week (darn ;)).

Luckily that left lots of time for cleaning…

I had to shuffle things around to fit some of my new creations and new books!

And did lots of creating:

Rainbow felt necklace
Oh hello felt Hello Kitty!

Got a delivery of new yarn so I got seriously back into knitting as well this week!

My new yarn is so bright and thick! Going to be a gigantic rainbow blanket!

Also did some decorating around my little pink house! Valentine’s decorating for most is my year round decor so I’m on cloud 9 stocking up on all sorts of goodies!!

That was a pretty busy week! Could’ve used an extra day in there for sure. Time to do it all again! 😀

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