Friday, May 29, 2009

Rhubarb cream pie

Although it has been a little while since earlier mentioned, I have not forgotten about the recipe that I promised.

This is the perfect summer pie to serve for an outdoor gathering. It has the expected tang of rhubarb but that is mellowed out with the sweet cream.


1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk

Mix first four ingredients well and then add milk. Form crust into pie pan, prick bottom a few times with fork tines, and bake @ 400 for 15 min.


2 tablespoons butter
4-6 cups diced rhubarb (about 5-6 full length stalks)
1 cup sugar

1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 egg yolks (well beaten)
1/4 cup light cream (whipping)
1/8 teaspoon salt

Cook first three ingredients in saucepan until tender. See pic. Allow to cool slightly. Mix remaining ingredients in separate bowl. Add to the cooled rhubarb and cook until thick. Cool and pour into baked pie crust and top with meringue. Bake @ 350 for 12-15 min.


4 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Add cream of tartar. Beat until soft but defined peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form.

Yum yum! Pin It Now!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Window flower boxes

Today my mother-in-law and I picked out flowers for my window boxes. Theme: yellow, orange, and reds. I used the same soil from last year with a little bone meal and pearlite mixed in to retain some moisture. I'm sure hoping that everything fills in nicely with one another, it should be a beautiful display.

Thank you!

Marigolds Aurora Yellow Fire and Durango Red
Gazania Daybreak Bright Orange
Salvia Farinacea Victoria White
Zinnia Star White
Sweet Potato Vine Blackie
Juncus Effusus Big Twister
Gaillardie Aristata Sunburst Scarlet Halo
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Friday, May 22, 2009

Beach attire

It's totally swimsuit weather! Memorial Day weekend is soon approaching and the temps are soaring in Michigan. This is going to be a great weekend at any one of the Great Lakes, seeing as how nearly all the state has been having high 70's weather.

I found the cutest website for swimwear through my one of my fave blogs: You Are My Fave. I am absolutely in love with the vintage inspired design from Down East Basics! I am totally going to own my curves (yet, somehow, lack of hips) instead of trying to fit into a bikini this summer.

Suit $26.99

Suit $26.99

Top $29.99
Bottoms $19.99

I just ordered this one today, I love the colorful design!
So excited to see how it f

Plus, check out this chic coverup. So cute!

This suit is just screaming for that pair of Ray Bans that I've been ogling for months.

So classicly chic.
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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

25th Birthday Party

I had an absolutely wonderful birthday... possibly the biggest party I have ever had. Eighteen people showed up, pretty good turnout for a Monday evening! My aunt Anna, Uncle Roy, and I went out to breakfast at my favorite local coney island restaurant. Then, Uncle Roy, relaxed with Java while Aunt Anna and I went to walk through the MSU gardens (where Estevan and I got married). Below are a couple photos from our walk.

Later that afternoon the other guests arrived and we ate chicken spiedies with lots of sides brought by friends and family, and had rhubarb cream pie (recipe soon to come) and cake for desert. All in all, it was an absolutely fabulous 25th birthday. We sure did celebrate my first quarter-century in style.

Huge white clematis plant which was climbing over the arching trellis in the MSU gardens.

It would be hard to forget these.

Estevan didn't believe us when we told him Java would not allow us to play croquet. Look at him ready to pounce! This was the ultimate game of keep-away.

Estevan and me. I love this vintage dress, thank you Aunt San!

Tio Kevin, Titi Myrt, Aunt Cath, and Lela

Uncle Scott, Uncle Roy, Aunt Anna, and Lelo Adolfo.

My birthday cake from Estevan, so very thoughtful for a person who doesn't like cake.

Trying really hard to think of a birthday wish... nearly all of my wishes had already come true that day. I think I can guess what Java is wishing, "drop the cake, drop the cake, drop it!"
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Monday, May 18, 2009

Happy Birthdays all around

Today is my birthday and yesterday was my cousin Nick's birthday... "happy birthdays" all around.

Nick, Aunt Cath, and me. Check out the perms! Pin It Now!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Outdoor fun!

Warm weather and lush, green grass means one thing in my family: CROQUET! My childhood summer memories are filled with outdoor games and activities. Even though my poor dad usually had to drag me out of the house, I still remember having a lot of fun (not that my teenage self would admit to it).

A couple of years ago I received a vintage set but haven't had a chance to use it yet. In previous years our back yard has been bumpy to the extreme with many bare patches. This year, after many applications of lawn patch, fertilizer, watering, and grass seed, we finally have a descent yard.

Maybe we'll break out the old set for my birthday party.

You can find croquet sets almost anywhere, garage sales, ebay, grocery stores, etc.... I came across a neat online store,, that sells many different varieties and other old-fashioned outdoor game as well.

Plus, check out their logo... so adorable!

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Morning walk

I went for a walk this morning, with Java pulling me the whole way, and took my camera to show you just how beautiful Michigan is on a sunny spring morning.

We came across a huge lilac tree at the entrance to the park, I had to get another fix.

Family of ducks in a quiet swampy area.

I love how the morning sun filters through the ferns.

The river winds through the center of the park.

Some old fallen friends.

Java's favorite thing to see, he made me take a photo.

So sweet... these little guys were all over.

Michigan's true native: the Trillium.

Maybe some sort of pitcher plant?

These guys were screeching to beat the band!

Some more lilacs on the way home.

My neighbor's poppies are about to burst!

And finally, home sweet home... I love my daffs.
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Lilacs a bloomin'

Wonderful news! My aunt Anna from Florida is planning a special trip up to her old home state of Michigan next week. Goal: Lilacs and more lilacs! The lilacs are fully leafed out and blooming in my part of the state but are still very dormant in the "deep-freeze" of the upper peninsula... hopefully my aunt will get a good show wherever she goes. I'm so looking forward to this special treat.

Here's a little lilac eye candy...

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Wednesday, May 6, 2009


My interest in hostas has been growing a lot lately... almost as much as my newly planted hostas in the back yard. The foliage of these shade loving plants are unique when planted with many varieties and their flowers, which are often a second thought, are beautiful. They tolerate nearly anything and can be roughly divided year after year and still come back flourishing.

I joined
GardenWeb last year when I first started seriously gardening and my absolute favorite forum is definitely the hosta forum. The pictures below are some of my favorites, the pics themselves came from all over the web from terrific gardeners.

My name is Erica, and I am a hostaholic....


'Great Expectations'


All the more reason to love 'Guacamole'... this is a pic of it's flowers!



My favorite: 'Blue Mouse Ears'

'Cat and Mouse' (cultivar of 'Blue Mouse Ears')

You know, my birthday is coming up soon.... just sayin'. =)

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