Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Wedding pictures from the weekend

This past weekend was a busy one for our entire family! We are very grateful that we had lots of wonderful friends who wanted to help us. We had young ladies working in the kitchen and good friends from Michigan making cakes!

It all turned out very well, the wedding went flawlessly! The dresses where beautiful, (Jessica Courter made my dress), and I managed to snap some good pictures here and there.

Our photographer and friend, my sister-in-laws brother, took some of the pictures before the wedding, so we could get as many out of the way as possible.

We found a shed that made a nice background for some of them.

Here, I managed to capture Elise with a nice glare from the sun to compliment the composition. This is my favorite of all the pictures I took, though I didn't take many, as I was in most of the pictures, and had to stay out of David's way anyway :-D

David getting her dress just the way he wants it.

Most beautiful bride in the world. (Gabriel agreed).

The 4 of us. I am on the left, Rachel Draper, and Rachel Roberson are on the right. (Taken by Laurel)

Pretty smile.

Awwww, cuuuuute! (Taken by Laurel, I spiffed it up in Photoshop.)

Elise and I. (Taken by Laurel)

Ok, there you are. I can't wait to see David's results!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Gluten Free Pancakes

So I made pancakes yesterday! Nobody should have to go without pancakes. So I scoured the internet looking for a decent one, and ended up finding one that worked pretty well, but I made some adjustments to suit my liking.

See, here they are! And they tasted pretty good too!

Adjustments you say? Yep, they where too thin, with not enough sugar or baking powder in them, and they used sugar substitute, milk powder and water, which I really didn't like, so I fixed that right up. I also had to cut the recipe in half, because I'm the only one eating these, and even at that, they will last me for 3 or 4 breakfasts :)

So here we go, my improvisation of the recipe.

Gluten Free Pancake Recipe


1/2 cup rice flour
1 1/2 tablespoons tapioca flour (or starch)
2 tablespoons potato starch
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 egg
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup buttermilk


In a bowl, mix or sift together all dry ingredients. Stir in egg, buttermilk, and oil until few lumps remain.
Heat a medium sized oiled skillet. Spoon the batter one table spoon at a time into the skillet, I did about 3 or 4 tablespoons for 5 inch pancakes.

This makes approximately 10 5 inch pancakes. They are nice and fluffy, and with butter and syrup, I hardly noticed they where gluten free.

You can use brown or white rice flour, I made them with brown rice flour once, and white rice flour the second time. I think I liked the brown rice flour better!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Amazing Caramel Sauce

This is the most amazing caramel sauce ever! Our favorite way to use it is a dip for apples, but you can use as a glaze for ice cream, or even make caramel squares. The recipe is for caramel apple dip, but I will explain how to adjust the recipe for glaze or squares.
It is smooth and creamy, and it tastes even better than the caramel squares you get from the store.

Caramel Sauce

1 cup butter (you can use margarine)
2 cups brown sugar
Dash of salt
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt butter in a 3-quart sauce pan. Add sugar and salt, stir well.
Stir in corn syrup, mix well.
Gradually add milk, stirring constantly.
Cook and stir over medium heat to thread stage (215˚-235˚), 10 to 15 minutes. Be careful to stir VERY well while it is cooking, otherwise the brown sugar will "flake up" when it starts boiling, and it will look like there are little brown flecks in it. It won't taste bad, it's just not very pretty.

Remove from heat, stir in vanilla. Pour into buttered pan (I use a casserole dish).
Allow to cool slightly before dipping your apples into it!

Variation for caramel glaze for ice cream.

Basically you need to make the caramel thinner so it won't become too chewy on contact with the cold ice cream.
I add 1/4 cup more of butter, and use only 1/4 cup of corn syrup instead of 1/2 a cup. Then I heat it to a little less than the thread stage (about 200˚) . Otherwise, follow the recipe, with these changes.

Variation for caramel squares.

Now you need your caramel to be much more chewy, so you can cut it into squares. use 2 1/4 cups of brown sugar, instead of just 2, and use a whole cup of corn syrup, instead of 1/2.
Otherwise everything else is the same, but pour your caramel into a buttered 9X9X2 inch pan, cool and cut into squares.

Have fun with the caramel!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Photo Session with the Castille Family

I'm finally getting around to showing you some pictures that I did for some friends recently, the Castille family.
So with the help of my 2 umbrella lights (I would be lost without them!) and my awesome Nikon D80 camera, I got some pretty nice shots for my portfolio, and some happy customers.

It's was quite fun, and I learned a lot about my lights and posing people!

Here are some of my favorites. I think they are all excellent posers!

Mr. Castille and his grandson, Evan.

I really like the warmth in the coloring I was able to obtain in the living room photos. Gives them a nice cozy feel.

Mr Castille, with Christy, Rachel, Sean, and Even behind him.

...and this time with Mrs. Castille!

...and now outside with the barn for a nice background.

Anyone else need some portraits? I'm more than happy to oblige! My D80 and I enjoy working with people!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A new adventure

Some of you may or may not know that I have begun a new adventure...a gluten free adventure. After studying my symptoms, (which I have struggled with for some time) and after doing lots of research, I have decided that gluten is most likely the problem.

It really isn't a for sure thing, but in a few months, say, another 6 months, I should know for sure. The reason it will take so long for me to be positive is because it takes a long time to cleanse the gluten out of your system, and then it takes time to heal once the gluten is gone.

After that I should really be able to tell.

So, meanwhile, I've been experimenting with cooking gluten free! So far it hasn't been too bad. The first thing I tried was cinnamon rolls. I hadn't had any bread products for some time, and I was really hungry for cinnamon rolls.

They look absolutely beautiful! They didn't taste quite as good as they look, but they still tasted pretty good for being made with rice flour, tapioca starch, potato starch, and corn starch. Yeah, they did taste a little on the starchy side, but I was glad to have them!

And then I tried the chocolate cake in a mug...awesome! Apparently rice flour isn't half bad when it comes to chocolate cake, because I quite enjoyed this. Maybe I'll dump some ice cream on top of that next time we have it! You just throw a few ingredients into a mug and cook in the microwave for a couple of minutes.

And next I made bread, also with rice flour and potato starch. Ok, this one really made me miss wheat! It really wasn't too bad, but still not nearly as good as wheat, so I definitely need to work on this one. Partly I think I didn't let it rise enough, but I'll be making it again before long, so I'll be able to try again.

I plan on posting recipes in the future. At the moment I'm getting many of my recipes from thebakingbeauties.blogspot.com I've got my eye on some pretty yummy looking stuff there.

I also plan on posting more information about gluten sensitivity and it's symptoms, so stay tuned if you want to hear more about that.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Engagement of Elise and Gabriel

Thought I'd post a few pictures of Elise and Gabe's engagement!

The wedding is set for Nov. 7th. Make sure you show up!

These where all taken at the Natchez Trace, and the light was very harsh. I had to do quite a bit of photoshoping (thanks to David Price for sharing some techniques with me!) to get rid of bold shadows and bright spots.
I hope to do some of just Elise with her ring soon.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Funny kiddos!

Recently Alan spent the day with us, and we got a lesson on how push-ups aught to be done.

You see, this is how they really work!

And then that evening, TJ and Rachel came to pick him up, and they stayed for supper.

Natasha is taking a great notice in Dad's beard...
Because it's extremely fascinating you see...

If only I would quit interrupting with my camera flash!

Cutie pie! Uh, the one on the left that is :-P

Friday, July 3, 2009

Blog giveaway

You all know how much I love handmade bath and body stuff! My skin is quite sensitive to chemicals that are always present in store bought stuff.
I found this giveaway for body butter, and I just entered!

Also I am having a giveaway of my very own at my other blog, Etsy Treasure Chest, for 3 bars of handmade soap. Check them out and be sure to enter!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


I find it sadly amusing how someone can be so worried about people killing animals. And yet, they could care less if the animal kills people.

Funny, isn't it?

And since when did unborn babies become less than animals? I mean, first they where put on the same level as animals. Now, we have to save the animals, but can kill all the unborn babies we want.

Yeah, right.

And haven't people noticed the harder we try to get rid of God, the worse things get? No, of course not, who would figure that one out? I mean jeez, it's all God's fault that things are bad, never mind things where just fine before we tossed him out the window.

People never get it, do they?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Our Church Website

Lately I have been doing a lot of work on our new church website, Grace Baptist Reformed. Today I did quite a bit with it, since we where at our friend's the Castille family today for fellowship, it was convenient to work on it after lunch while we where all together and could figure out what needed to be done.
Since I am the "computer dude" at our house right now, the job of website building has fallen to me. I really don't mind, since I enjoy playing with webcode.
Though I must say, seeing a long line of code characters in my sleep now is somewhat disturbing.
I still have to run to my older brother for help every now and then, and I have grown quite close to google as well (please don't stone me!) but all in all, I think I'm starting to get quite familiar with this language like so:

And like so:

Copy and paste has befriended me as well...but don't tell anyone I said that!

Fun isn't it?

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The difference between "Dolce" and "Dulce"

Since there tends to be some confusion concerning the two, and which one is the correct spelling, I am going to help you understand the difference between the two.

Actually, there's a big difference!

Dolce is Italian for sweet. It is a common musical term, and often used when one is to play the music in a sweet manner.

This is what the dictionary has to say about it.

dolce |ˈdōl ch ā|
adverb & adjective Music
(esp. as a direction) sweetly and softly.
ORIGIN Italian, literally ‘sweet.’

Dulce is another thing entirely. Dulce does mean sweet, but it's meaning is slightly different since it is directed at food.

The dictionary says this about it.

dulce |ˈdəlsā|
a sweet food or drink, esp. a candy or jam. [ORIGIN: Spanish.]
sweet or mild. [ORIGIN: from Latin dulcis.]

Now you know the difference between the two...and why my blog says Dolce instead of Dulce! I am quite certain after all, that my music is not food!

Thursday, June 4, 2009


This is a cake Elise made. Isn't it elegant? Not much more I can say. Not that you would read it anyway, you'd be too busy looking at the pictures, so I won't say anything more!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Up close and personal with Natasha

Here's a few pics of Natasha I took, the eyes being the main focus.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The old ibook...gone forever!

My ibook finally died. Crashed. Bit the dust. Gave up the ghost. 'Course, the thing is only 8 or 9 years old and used to death to do way more than it was meant too... Nevertheless, it's kinda sad, it was such a good computer for me! I edited hundreds, maybe even thousands of photos on it, ran my business on it, played on it, took it with me everywhere, and now, finally, it's gone. Logic board is no longer logical. Mother board no longer feels motherly toward me...

I took it into Fairview and got a few bucks for the old hunk-uh-junk from someone who owns a small computer service business, he's going to salvage the parts that are working. Uh, did I say hunk-a-junk? I didn't mean it, honest!
Plus, I still kept the hard drive, which is really nice, cuz it'll give me plenty of extra storage.
My next investment, I believe, will be a powerbook. Yeah, I'm way behind I know, macbooks are all the thing now, but those'll have to wait!

Untill then, I get to use Dad's imac. Oh dear, I think I'm getting addicted...

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Our Trip to Texas

Since going to Texas to visit some friends, I have been trying to find time to process some pictures between all the orders I have been getting at my etsy shop, and finally here they are!

While we where there, we did some fun things, including visiting the creation museum.

The trip down.

That's a weird building!

Ummm, hello giraffe!

At the museum, this is a large human footprint. Um, very large actutally.

Typical reaction to the camera. Sigh.

Boaz gazes at a dinosaur's footprint.

Ancient artifact at the museum! Uh, wait, that's my dad!

All of us together.

At the New's house, Elise and Katie play the fiddle.

The boys get some wrestling instructions from Gabriel.

The majority of us at the dinner table. A few of us are missing :(