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Archive for May, 2010

Best Chocolate Sheet Cake Ever!

After many pounding fists and growling bellies hungry for chocolate, I have decided to post my new favorite sheet cake recipe. Now, now, now, let’s not get ahead of ourselves…this is not actually my recipe at all, but a delightful concoction from the internet sensation Pioneer Woman.

I know many of you have followed this funny, creative and down right super woman for a long time now. I have heard her name murmured on blogs, mentioned in casual conversation, but for some reason I resisted the urge to become one of her many followers. I am not quite sure why. But guess what folks…I finally gave in and decided to see what all the fuss was about.

Oh lawsee, saddle me up and call me a pioneer puppy! I can easily see why so many of you rave about this woman. She is not the tight-cinched apron wearing domestic diva that I thought her to be. She is one of us. Down to earth and unabashedly true to herself through and through, and above all else – hilarious! Funny how you can read little tid bits of someone’s life and feel like you have known them for years. After pouring over the pages of her site, I just know we’re related!

If you haven’t check her out, please do. You won’t regret it. Now, back to the chocolate…

This was my second time making this cake and I was fortunate enough to have some very talented helpers in the kitchen. Kameryn and Graceanna took turns melting butter, stirring batter, whisking icing, you name it! We had lots of fun with all the cooks in the kitchen.

We managed to get some action shots, but it was hard with so many little cooks buzzing around. Check out Pioneer Woman’s website for beautiful step-by-step photos of the cake. She makes baking it a breeze!

Recipe sweetly hand-written by Kameryn.
Pouring the delicious buttery chocolate mixture over the flour mixture. 
Spread it over the flour mixture;  allowing it to cool down a little.
Stir, stir, stir, just enough to blend.
Whisking together buttermilk and eggs.
Adding the buttermilk mixture to the blended chocolate/flour mixture.
Stir, stir, stir again until the mixture becomes uniform.
Carefully pour the mixture into an ungreased baking sheet and pop it in the oven.
Now for the icing! Melt the butter and add the cocoa. Once again, stir, stir, stir!
Gradually add the powdered sugar. (Little help from Mr. Blue Eyed Yonder, isn’t he a sweetie!)
Now for the final touch, pour the icing over the warm cake, inhale and swear to yourself that you will at least share some of it.
Mmmm, looks like a little Blue Eyed Yonder fan approves! Cakes are always sweeter after little fingers have had their poke at it.
You know it must be good when Nonnie has to give you a bath afterwards!
If this ooey, gooey picture doesn’t make you jump off the couch and make this delightful concoction right now, I don’t know what will! Just remember, as this cake sits it will get even better. I know, I know, that is hard to imagine, but trust me on this one. The icing will seep further into the cake and you will have to restrain yourself from unconsciously moaning as you sink your teeth into each bite.
And to kick off this holiday weekend I am doing a little Blue Eyed Yonder giveaway! If you make this cake, taste this cake or even dream about this cake over the weekend, leave me a comment or hit up Blue Eyed Yonder’s wall on Facebook. Tell me any sheet cake tips you have, things you may have done differently, or just how hard you hit the floor upon tasting it! I will pick a name at random to receive an adorable kitchen-themed surprise!
Happy, happy weekend!

Posted 5/28/10, Topic: Blog

Hoot Hoot Hooray!

Anyone that knows me, knows I am a nut about paper! Call me old fashioned, but there is just something so beautiful about the textures and the colors of paper. The feel of the it in your hand, the sweet simple process of dropping little lovlies in the mail, the precious smile when you realize there is something other than junk mail in your box. 
 

I am huge fan of kraft paper and corrugated cardboard, it has somewhat become my signature. The invitations I made for Savannah’s Anthropologie-inspired Owl Graduation party are no exception. Simple touches of texture, lovely vintage color palette and whimsical owls, how can a girl go wrong?
I will be out of town this weekend bringing my iboard to reality. I can’t wait to see how it all comes together. Wish me luck! 

Posted 5/20/10, Topic: Blog

Out and About: Evos

I have decided to start a new series on the BEY blog called ‘Out and About’. These segments will feature great little finds lurking in our own backyards. Perhaps a cool restaurant, a fun shop or just a little peek at what I find while I am ‘Out and About’. Have a neat find you want me to know about? Shoot me a message and I will check it out. 

To kick start this new series, today’s feature is Evos: Feel Great Fast Food. I was first introduced to this new restaurant through a really neat ‘green’ blog, Life in the Green Lane. Now before I share these delightful images, you must understand what scrutiny and harsh conditions us crazy bloggers go through to get these up close and personal photos. We shrug at all the strange looks we get from curious bystanders and laugh at the fact that all of the food we eat is usually cold. Oh the joys of being a blogger. I think I really freaked the man out sitting beside me at Evos. A friend of mine told me that I should have written my blog address on a napkin and slid it his way. Haha! That would have been priceless.

Evos is a cheerful little restaurant tucked neatly away on bustling Peachtree Street. It is one of a few fast food restaurants you can feel good about. Hence the slogan, “Fast Food Without the Guilt”.

“Evos is delicious All-American food. Hamburgers, fries and shakes. But without the guilt. Because Evos Airbakes instead of deep frying. Sealing in flavor without the excess fat. We select naturally raised beef and the best quality poultry because we know you’ll taste the difference. We make our food with the good stuff, not cheap ingredients. Our milkshakes? Organic milk and sugar. Simple, natural, delicious. Our fruitshakes? Real fruit and real fruit juices. Again, simple, natural, delicious.”

If you are wondering, yes, Airbaked fries are just as good as the ones fried the good ol’ fashioned way. I was delightfully surprised. A fun little side note to this restaurant is their Ketchup Karma bar. To appeal to my crafty side, they even have cute little stickers to mark each ketchup. The Garlic Gravity ketchup was awesome. Coming in a close second, is the Cayenne Firewalker. Delish!
Nothing washes down the burgers, fries and tangy ketchups better than a frothy, ice cold chocolate shake. I was amazed to read their nutritional info. Did you know that an Evos milkshake has only 180 calories compared to the 640 calories found in a Chick-fil-a milkshake. Slurp on ladies, slurp on! 
Evos even goes the extra mile by having all of their paper products made with 100% recycled material and printed with soy ink. Now that’s a concept you can sink your teeth into!
Photos by: KHJ

Posted 5/17/10, Topic: Blog

Anthropologie Inspired Owl Graduation Party

This weekend I am busy working on a super cute project, an Anthropologie inspired Owl Graduation Party for my sweet cousin, Savannah Jane. She will be graduating from high school next weekend and will soon head off to college at Kennesaw State University (hence the owl theme).

During the brainstorming process for most projects, I put together inspiration boards. Just little clippets here and there of things that strike my fancy and give me the inspiration for the project. Here is the iboard for Savannah Jane’s party – hints of travel, leaving home, books, quest for knowledge, search of self, beauty of nature and of course those sweet little owls.

Stay tuned for photos from the actual event and see how this iboard transpires into reality. Happy, happy weekend!

Posted 5/14/10, Topic: Blog

Sweet Tooth Shindig

I remember it like it was yesterday, the cap and gown, the pomp and circumstance, the joys of graduation. “Getting out” is what they gingerly call it at Georgia Tech. I remember sitting in the crowd of graduates and experiencing what felt like the first breath during a very long race. It was in that moment that I was able to reflect on my years spent at Tech. The countless hours in class, the many all-nighters, the never ending feeling of mental and physical exhaustion, the projects, the presentations,  the friendships made, the lessons learned. It was a very bittersweet to say the least.
I enjoy attending graduations, giving a nod to others that have taken the same challenging path. The rush of emotions still overwhelm me, especially the music. The sound of ‘Pomp and Circumstance’ even makes us non-mamas tear up. 
This past weekend my cousin, Taylor, graduated from Emory University. Seeing him in his cap and gown made me so proud. To this day when I look at him I see the same sweet little boy me and my sister would play with (and often aggravate) for hours on end. He has had such very special place in my life. Such a beautiful person on the inside and out. So tender hearted and always in search of truth and knowledge in any situation. 
In celebration of his graduation, we decided to host a little “Sweet Tooth Shindig”. The idea was very spur of the moment, but it couldn’t have turned out any cuter. I made fruit kabobs and some pretty amazing fruit dip, Mr. Blue Eyed Yonder made a to-die-for lime mousse and lemon velvet tart and Mom picked up a heavenly chocolate layer cake and brownie bites from Harry’s Farmers Market. It also happened to be my lucky day, the Farmer’s Market had beautiful pink peonies. I just had to grab a couple of bunches. They made the most adorable little arrangements in random little vintage containers I had lying around the house.
Photos by: Katie Hollingsworth
We owe a super huge thanks to my darling sisters who gladly helped out with many of the decorative touches and to my mom who helped arrange the cutest dessert table that has ever graced my back patio. You guys are the best!

Posted 5/14/10, Topic: Blog

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