Monday, January 23, 2012

Easy Peasy Yummy Chocolate chip pumpkin donuts with nutella drizzle

These were so yummy, I had to share.
You may be aware of my slight nutella obsession, as I ranted about it once here...

So when I realized I had some punpkin bread mix in the pantry, (to which you should always always add chocolate chips to anything pumpkin)... I thought I MUST MAKE DONUTS!

See I'm the one person left on the planet that has not joined the cupcake craze. Mind you, they're great. I appreciate them, and I still love finding and sharing loads of the new and unique recipes people are coming up with for them. And I do still enjoy eating them, I'm just not a huge cake person. I'd rather have cookies, or donuts. I'm waiting for the huge donut craze to hit, and then I will really go nuts. Can you imagine having a gourmet donut shop pop up as often as the cupcake places are?!?!?
But ... i continue to wait. My only real gourmet donut fix is when the hubs goes to Portland for work and brings back voodoo doughnut. AMAZING!

So anyway, I made the mix and added chocolate chips. 
Then I poured it into my donut pan.
When they had cooled off I drizzled nutella over the top - - - because WHY wouldn't I?!?!?
They were fantastic. And super easy.

{bad phone pics here:}

I hope you will try it!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

"Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does."

You may have noticed this video on my blog before. I keep it on the right side.
This video was made by my dear friends.
This is their son - Asher. He has cystic fibrosis.
But that's not who he is. It is however, something he has to put up with - every day. all day. forever.
{"Cystic fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States (70,000 worldwide)."}
So his very breath is difficult. I can't imagine that. Asher has to take pills before he can eat, and he has to endure long treatments every single day in order to keep his lungs healthy.

Asher is one of the most amazing little boys I know.  I first saw this video a couple years ago I think,
and it totally changed me. It changed how much I complained about the little things, the stupid things, the sick kid days, the screaming kid days, the high maintenance days... it put a lot in perspective.
I have over and over been blown away by the amazing parents my friends Rachel & Jeremy are.
I have repeatedly been blessed by knowing them, been in awe of my God merely by watching them, or listening to them, or by knowing their life, if only even a little and watching them somehow survive after losing their second son, Paxon - just last year. He also had CF.
These boys make me want to fight harder than I know how. Dream bigger than I know is possible, and to LOVE and LIVE so far outside the box that life cannot contain me.
Because these boys inspire me. daily. always.

Please please take a few moments and watch these amazing videos their proud papa made. He is so gifted in these creations. The first one was even picked up by the National CF foundation.

Untitled from zeropointD on Vimeo.

This is the new one they created last year - equally as great. And you can see how much Asher is growing and watching life move around him, constantly discovering and maturing. It's amazing.

teamASHER 2011 Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Video from teamAsher on Vimeo.

I really cannot WAIT to see this year's video at the 4th annual TeamAsher Auction!!!
I was so thrilled to participate in this auction last year. I created a couple necklaces for it last time, and the proceeds go to the CF foundation. We believe that a cure is out there! We need to find it!!!
Jeremy & Rachel really have such an amazing heart that is fiercely determined to do whatever they possibly can to help this foundation get closer to their goals. To help their son find better medicines. To find out as much as they can for him and to keep him healthy.
I absolutely want to fight with them. Raise money & raise hope with them. Participate in any effort possible.

This year I am donating 4 designs. 3 of them are new ones created just for this event. I really hope you will come check it out (if you are local) on February 25.
Whether you are local or not - PLEASE consider donating a product or a service that could contribute to the success of the event. I know they would be so incredibly happy to hear from you! You can check out the information page here, and see the impressive list they already have put together. Plus they are giving shout outs for these vendors on facebook and twitter. It will be added exposure for you.

This is a new style for the prayer box pendant, upgraded to a long, 22" sterling silver ball chain,
with a sterling silver rectangle that says ""
You can tuck your prayer or hope or wish inside the prayer pendant box. 
Fresh water pearl in bright turquoise, with chocolate brown mini crystal drop.
value $50

 For the special little girl in your life.
sterling silver "dream" pendant with purple and pink crystal drops 
and a beautiful butterfly pendant with tiny swarovski crystals 
on a 16" silver ball chain
value $27

 I loved this one.
This one is also on an upgraded, long 22" sterling silver ball chain
sterling silver cascading sized circles say:
with upgraded lavender Czech crystal
& a dark mini purple pearl drop.
{Purple is the official color for the CF foundation}
Value $60

This is a long style, bohemian inspired, mixed metal piece o a 30" antiqued gold colored chain.
The larger bronze circle says "He who gives breathe gives life"
There is a thin, floating antiqued, gold circle that hangs over it in tiny script - the repeated words: 
love hope dream trust
Antiqued gold colored owl hangs over that {In honor of Paxon, Asher's brother}
green fresh water pearl drop with mini green crystal drop
Value $33

I hope you like these - and I hope you will come and bid! If you don't have an item to donate, or ship, you can come SHOP! I got LOTS of great stuff last year!!!
If not, please feel free to donate online.

"Whatever the struggle, continue the climb. It may be only one step to the summit."
~Diane Westlake

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Portable Construction Zone - Super fun toddler gift or outdoor play idea

We have probably the most FUN neighborhood. Truly my #1 reason for having stayed where we are thus far, is because I think it's hard to come by this sort of thing. We've got a great community, where everyone sort of knows each other and looks out for each other, and where all of our kids are living life together.
Most of us have small backyards which means everyone is always out front playing. Most days we have at least 5 families out front, sitting in driveways and kids riding bikes, scooters, playing games, etc. There is never a lack of people to hang out with. Over Christmas and New Years it seemed like everyone had taken off the entire week at the same time, so we spent a lot of days outside for 6 hours in a glorious mid-70 degree weather, just hanging with all the other fun people around us.
Most of the kids are between 5-10 probably, but then there's my boy that just turned two, and his buddy Blake that turned two -one week before him. They are so cute together.

The problem is, they are the youngins around here. So when all the kids are out front riding all over the place, they are usually chasing them around and desperately looking for things to get into.
So when I saw this cool construction box on pinterest. I thought - BRILLIANT! A portable construction zone, something they can dig in, play with trucks, bury their bugs, and just be boys. Easy to pull out, keeps them semi-still, and easy to close up and scoot back in to the garage. So I made one for my boy and one for Blake for his birthday.
This is the photo I saw on pinterest.

 So I went out and found some green storage bins. Then several bags of the nice, polished rocks (which I found at the dollar store). I used about 6 bags in each one. Then I gathered whatever construction trucks and tractors I could find, as well as bugs, lizards, mini dinosaurs, and a shovel set. My goal was to wrap it up and put a hard hat on top but I couldn't find one anywhere.

My daughter helped me pour all the ingredients in.
The first one below shows how it looks when you put everything in. This one was for my boy, Ash.
The one below it shows what it looks like if you turn it into a gift, and leave everything in their package.
(We still had all the rocks, lizards, & dinosaurs loose in the bottom underneath the trucks, etc)
 Then I made a basic sign to put on the top. I laminated it and then put some construction stickers around it. I put the rest of the stickers inside so Blake could finish decorating it himself.

Here's a happy Ash-man, playing out front with his portable construction zone. 
I was really surprised how long it entertained this normally very un-still child :)  = SUCCESS!!!

Overall, a great, fun, and easy project to make. I'd love to hear more of your ideas on similar toddler entertainment. 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

HAPPY 2012! New designs, custom shares, and Valentines already?!?!

HELLoooooo everyone!
It's been a while. It was a nice, and much needed holiday for us over here.

I hope you all had a lovely December! I tried to soak up these munchkins, and all the great family and friend visits we got, stuffing myself on home-made marshmallows, and anything sugarlicious....

This was my first Christmas season doing jewelry, and boy did I learn a LOT!

I am woman hear me roar, but I am only one woman! {OH SNAP!}
This independent woman would love to have a staff of 50, but.....
my kids aren't yet legally old enough to work. And I'm a baker's dozen away from having 50.
Each custom request requires a lot of communication and time, so I am currently limiting the amount and the scope of these projects.(at least until I can pop out 13 more kids)

You can review my new fun, sassy custom request policy in the shop policies section :) please enjoy my late night rule making :)
I've also edited most of my other shop policies - shipping...production...fine print....blah blah blah....

That being said, I have a few photos to share for the requests that came in before Christmas.

And although I'm already annoyed at seeing the Valentine stuff everywhere already... of course I have to
re-open with a new design! So this one is in honor of all you ball and chains out there!

The hearts & handcuffs duo
 This one shows the option of putting initials in the upper left corner. I did B+L
 This shows how you can rotate the chain to have the handcuffs in whatever position you want. You can either have it at the back of your neck where a clasp would be, or keep it positioned randomly on the side, or down at the bottom where the hearts hang. I like the versatility of that, and I like the sassiness of the handcuff addition - like being stuck together - ball & chain.
 These also show the option to hang the jewels from the bottom of the antiqued gold heart (see above), or hanging from the top, inside the heart (see below)

It's in the shop here


{All photographs, designs and writing are ©Mya Bruce Designs unless otherwise noted.  Do not copy. Thank you!}