Friday, 14 August 2009

The End and the Start of Something New

Hello Ladies,
I know some of you have noticed my absence over the last few weeks and thank you all for your kind messages.
This is probably going to be the hardest post I will ever have to write so I hope you will all forgive me if I falter.
I am sad to tell you all that Mr D and I have gone our separate ways, obviously here is not the place to go into any details, but now I'm sure you will understand that I haven't been able to carry on as normal.

I have received an enormous amount of support during what has been an awful and emotional time for me and am ever grateful for the fantastic network of friends and family that have carried me over the last few weeks.
I have just returned from Italy, where my family are at the moment, and feel stronger for spending these early days with them.
I've very much enjoyed creating this blog and have met some wonderful and interesting people along the way.
I feel that I cannot, however, carry on writing under the Name of Mrs D as this is no longer in my future.

I will be continuing to blog as I have loved the experience so far and hope you will join me at my new home. I have named my new blog Kelly's Recipes for Life as my original vision still holds true.
I already have so much to tell you all and my dear friend Victoria has been very busy planning some fabulous diversions to keep me focused on a positive path. I am, now, more than ever, grateful for her friendship.
But for now I'm just trying to:

Lots of Love


Thursday, 30 July 2009

A Weekend Retreat

Hot on the heels of my friend and fellow blogger Rose, Mr D and I are off to Cornwall for a long weekend.
I'm not looking forward to the drive at all but I have a new sat nav (let's hope it works, or it could be a very long time before my next post!)
I have been there before but that was about 5 years ago now and I'm looking forward to seeing the changes in the place (and probably myself!) I will keep an eye out for bargains and beauties and, knowing me, am sure to find a few.

We are staying in Newquay, where the ISA world surfing games are being held this weekend. It is likely to be busy as a result so we will probably head off somewhere quieter like Tintagel, where we can explore the ruined castle that legend says was the home of King Arthur.
But I will be checking out the surfing too!

I hope you all have fantastic weekends and look forward to catching up when I get back.
See you Monday!

Lots of Love xx

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

I'm a Barbie Girl!

I can hardly believe I have written 16 posts and have not yet mentioned my Barbie doll collection!
And with Barbie's 50th birthday this year I thought it was about time I gave her a mention!
In 1959, Barbie took the world by storm, surprising skeptical toy critics at New York's Toy Fair. Soon, little girls across America, and later, the world, were singing Barbie doll’s praises. In the coming years, both adults and children alike would collect their favorite doll in record numbers. Five decades later, Barbie doll remains one of the hottest selling toys in the world.

Barbie collecting can be an expensive habit. The latest coveted version, released by Mattel for Barbie's 50th, is valued at $50,000. This Barbie is decked out in 34 carats worth of white and black diamonds, which sparkle down to her heels, complete with a 24-karat-gold chain bracelet on her left wrist.
Unfortunately I don't have one of those! but I do have a huge collection of others (to be honest I can't tell you exactly how many, maybe around 200!)

I began collecting seriously about 15 years ago and have been so lucky to have received a vast amount of dolls as gifts from family and friends (my brilliant Dad deserves a special mention here as he never goes anywhere without looking for a special Barbie to bring home for me!).
My collection represents years of birthdays, Christmases and fabulous trips and means so much more than the monetary worth of the dolls to me.
This year I spent my birthday in Florida and received 20 dolls from my Parents, Aunt and Uncle, Baby Cousin and Mr D. (they were fun and games to get home!)

In her fifty-year lifespan, Barbie has had over 100 professions, everything from a rock star to a paleontologist to a presidential candidate. She is a fairy, a princess, and a fairy princess.
In fact if you can think of it Barbie has been there, done it and got the (no doubt fabulous, designer) T shirt!
Which brings me to the enviable wardrobe, fantastic cars, houses and furniture this little lady has it all!
Like any successful person she has taken her fair share of criticism too!
Barbie has been accused of representing a very unrealistic and damaging idea of what a modern adult woman looks like…that it affects a girl's expectations in her life. That she is a bad and dangerous role model but Barbie creator Ruth Handler said : "Barbie has always represented that a woman has choices''
My choice is to be barbie when I grow up!
Who wouldn't want to look that good at 50!
So it is high time I organised and catalogued my Barbies. I hope you don't mind if I share my collection with you over the coming months? I can promise some stunners!

Lots of Love xxxx

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Shoppin' and Swappin'

Another successful TK Maxx shopping trip to report! (that place is magnificent!).
I have been looking for a really nice chalkboard for the Kitchen for ages and was really pleased to finally find this one in my local store.
I've now decided that the kitchen needs repainting a slightly more exciting colour that the off white it is at the moment in honour of my latest love! I will be sure to update you all on progress.
I also couldn't resist this little matching box that will look fab in my bedroom.
I also got a little lovely for Victoria but I'm afraid I can't tell you about it until I have given it to her because it will ruin the surprise!

Yesterday was also the posting day for the Twilight swap so this little lot is winging it's way to Denise as we speak. I am so excited and I hope she likes everything!

Same place tomorrow :)
Lots of love

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Christening Cakes

Today was my little Niece, Leah's, Christening. I've been really looking forward to it for ages now as I love an excuse to dress up
(well, more importantly the excuse to wear a hat without being mocked!)

It was a lovely day and Leah was a very good girl, happy and smiling throughout despite how overwhelming it all must have been for her.

As you will all know by now, where there is an opportunity to bake, I jump at the chance!
I really wanted to make something a bit more involved that my usual cupcakes, so I offered to take care of the main christening cake.
This was my first large project, and for an important occasion so I wanted to keep it simple to avoid tripping myself up by trying to be flash!

I made 2 simple, 9 inch, round Madeira cakes using Nigella's Mother in Law's recipe click here to try it for yourself.
The recipe really easy and quick to make and produced perfect results (which is always a relief!)
One cool, the cakes were sandwiched together using raspberry jam and butter cream, covered in white Regal Ice and the fun began!

I had already made icing butterflies and a set of 'building blocks' to spell her name and attached these to the cake with royal icing.
I then really impressed myself by managing to pipe out the date of the christening (my first attempt at piping writing!).
While the date was still wet I covered it with lilac edible glitter to make it stand out.
Once all the icing was dry I brushed the wings of the butterflies and the letters on the blocks with lustre powder and gave the whole lot a dose of iridescent glitter. Unfortunately this didn't photograph well, so take it from me the stuff that looks like dust is glitter!
I am really pleased and proud of my first attempt at a 'proper cake' and everyone was very complementary, which was nice because I always see the flaws in my own work!

I couldn't get away without making cupcakes as well, so by popular demand there were vanilla, chocolate and carrot cake cupcakes
The carrot cake cupcakes are ultra easy and give brilliant results. They are my absolute favourites and if you like carrot cake you really should try these. Click here for the recipe.
The Vanilla cupcake and Chocolate cupcake recipes were from Martha Stewart living and as per most of her recipes (as long as you follow the instructions to the letter!) were very successful. click here for the vanilla recipe and here for the chocolate.

That's all for now, as usual I am impatient to see what the rest of you lovely people in blog land have been up to!

Lots of Love xxx

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Lavender Hearts and Laundry

I was so excited this morning when I received my order from Alison at Vintage Amethyst.
It was a lovely surprise as I really wasn't expecting it to arrive so quickly!
I ordered this beautiful lavender heart and a brilliant retro style laundry sign. They both arrived beautifully presented (so pretty that one sign I bought as a gift will not even need wrapping!)
The heart is charming and smells absolutely amazing and I am absolutely delighted with both items (and now have many more on my wish list!)
Thank you Alison, your boutique is lovely, I will be back!
Just thought I'd mention that Victoria at Florence and Mary also posted about our fun trip to MAC and included photos of the day click here to read her post.
I'd better be off now, busy day!!
Lots of love

Monday, 20 July 2009

First Sight

As promised a sneak preview of the crafting I have been doing for the Twilight swap!
I have had a really good time making for this, it has been just as much for myself as for my swap partner, Denise.
I have found some fun items, have tried new techniques and am really pleased with the results.

The deadline for sending the packages is the 25th July so I really need to get a wriggle on with finishing all of the projects in time, but I am having so much fun and it's so easy to get distracted with new ideas!
So here are a few sneaky images of the things I have been working on for the last few weeks. I will, of course, give you a proper view of the contents of my swap package one it has been safely received by Denise. So I think that is as much as I can show you all for now as I don't want to spoil the surprise.
I have been Lurking around Polka Dot Moon but Denise is giving nothing away as yet!!!
I suppose I will just have to be patient!
Lots of Love