Tuesday, September 18, 2012

PJ Time

Hey there, remember me? Your favorite blogger is popping in to say hello. 

I wanted to share with you the gift I made for GB's birthday. I was trying to stick to a tight budget and luckily homemade, handmade pajama pants were quite inexpensive. 

I used the easiest of templates found on Simply Modern Mom. The basic instructions: trace, cut, sew. 

I started with a pair of GB's favorite pajama pants and folded them in half. 

 I then traced both sides, front and back. 

I needed two of this particular piece, so I folded the fabric in half, pinned and cut. 

Through the magic of folded fabric, I then had two pieces. Next, I began sewing the legs together. 

I then tucked one leg into the other and pulled either side of the would be crotch apart. I then sewed a 'U' shape which brought together the pants. On a side note, isn't the word 'crotch' horrific?

Next, I had to add the elastic to the waist. I folded over the top portion of the pant, sewed around and fed the elastic through. Now looking back, if I were to do this again, I would lay the elastic under the fold first, then sew it in, so I wouldn't have to feed it at all.

Lastly, I hemmed the bottom of the pant. I was all done!

GB really liked his pants. You can find him many nights lounging in his Smash couture original.

The whole project only took about two hours. Now that I know what I am doing (that is subjective) I think I could churn them out even faster. I plan on making a lot of these for Christmas.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Checking In

Hey folks!

I just wanted to give everyone an update on Kiss My Smash.

I've recently started a new job as well as the classes I told you about in the Going Back to School post.

Working 8am - 5pm + school at night has been a huge transition for me. I'm not gonna lie - I may have already had a few tears about it over the weekend. Having little to no free time is rough for me. I love to unwind on the couch after a long day at work. I don't even have time to go to the gym now during the week.

I don't want you to think I am complaining however. I am so blessed to have a wonderful new work opportunity. I love the job, my coworkers, and the fact that I can wear high heels every day. I may even start posting about fashion and how to stay hip in work clothes. What would you think about that?

I am also so blessed to be so closed to finishing my degree. When I FINALLY have that degree in hand, I know I will feel a sense of accomplishment.Three more months, three more months, three more months.....

The downside to all of this is that my blogging is going to have to take a back burner. Instead of posting 5 days a week, I might be a little more limited. But don't you worry- Kiss My Smash is as important to me as ever and I will continue to craft, sew, bake and make unnecessary mayhem in my home for your entertainment.

I hope you will stick by my side for these next few months.

In other news, I will be showing you this week my very first pair of pajama pants! I made these all on my own! I can't wait to show you!

See you soon!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Happy Birthday GB!

You might remember from yesterday's post, that GB had a birthday this past weekend. One of my favorite aspect's of a birthday is the dessert. I took a huge risk and I made a brand new recipe for GB's birthday. 

My sister, Sly, recommended a chocolate birthday cake recipe by Lindsay Hunt over at Marcus Samuelsson.  She raved that it was the best chocolate cake she had ever had. The simplicity of the recipe was what I found appealing. 

2 eggs
1 cup whole milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
13/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
11/2 teaspoons baking powder
11/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon espresso powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup boiling water

First, I combined the eggs, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. 

Next, I combined the dry ingredients.  

Lastly, I combined the wet and dry ingredients followed by adding the boiling water. I had never heard of doing such a thing. But you know me - who am I to question a recipe? 

The batter turned out very thin, but since I was already prepared for it. The recipe explicitly describes having a thin batter. For once, I did not panic in the kitchen. I baked these little cupcake friends

Next, I needed a butter cream recipe. Also recommended from my sister, Sly, was this classic butter cream recipe from the Savory Sweet Life. The ingredients were similar to other butter cream recipes I have tried, but for some reason the ratio was just right. 

1 cup unsalted butter, softened but not melted
3-4 cups of powdered sugar, sifted
1/4 teaspoon tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
up to 4 tablespoons heavy cream

 The first step was beating the butter followed by adding the sugar. 

I added the vanilla, salt, and heavy cream and the butter cream frosting became perfect within minutes. The blogger at the Savory Sweet Life gave great advice about the texture and stiffness of the frosting. If you want it thinner, just add more milk. The opposite is also true, if you want it stiffer, add more powdered sugar. I added more sugar for a stiffer frosting. The stiffer the frosting, the easier it is to pipe onto the cakes. 

GB and I split the first cupcake for a test run before we served them to guests. I couldn't be happier to tell you, this particular combination is hands down the best cake I have ever made. The cake is incredibly moist and perfectly sweet. When combined with the perfect butter cream frosting, these cupcakes have the power to take over the world. 

If you like chocolate cake, I beg you, stop what you are doing. Now, go make this cake. You don't need a birthday to indulge in these sweet treats. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Muffins for my Muffin

This past weekend was GB's birthday! Yay for GB getting old! 

One of the many nicknames I have given him is muffin. I surprised him with breakfast in bed and what is a better breakfast option for him than blueberry muffins? Muffins for my muffin.

In preparation, I googled "Muffin recipe" and chose the first recipe that appeared. This basic muffin recipe seemed easy enough. 

- 2 cups of all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 1 tablespoon of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1 cup of whole milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 4 oz of butter (or 1/2 stick)

The first step was to combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Of course, when I read this, I assumed it was all dry ingredients so I added the sugar as well. 

Next, beat the egg. Then, uh oh, add the sugar, vanilla, and milk. The sugar! I already added the sugar! When baking, I know how precise everything needs to be, and sometimes, the order of the added ingredients affects the outcome. I panicked. 

I slowly scooped out what sugar I could from the dry ingredients and added it to the egg. 

After I managed to recover from that emergency, I realized I didn't have whole milk, but skim milk. I had no choice but to use it. It was around this step I began seriously worrying about the outcome. 

Meanwhile, I melted the butter in the microwave, then allowed it to cool to room temperature. 

 I combined the wet and dry ingredients including the melted butter. The recipe stated the batter should be lumpy. This was a step I knew I couldn't screw up. 

I had some great fresh blueberries on hand, so I tossed them into the batter to add some extra flavor to the muffins. 

I was completely out of cupcake liners, so I grabbed what few silicone liners I had. The remaining cups were greased and floured. Clearly, I did not win the neat award for pouring batter. 

After baking for about 20 minutes, the house smelled awesome. I was so excited to taste my first homemade muffins. 

Lo and behold - these muffins tasted great! They were not overly sweet or overly dry. Just the perfect balance of sweetness and freshness made these cupcakes a keeper. This may become a weekend staple in our house!