chocolate cake in a mug

do you (or someone you love) ever need a "little something" and you don't feel like making and keeping an entire cake around the house?
well, here you go!

1 large coffee mug
4 tbs. flour
4 tbs. sugar
2 tbs. baking cocoa
1 egg
3 tbs. milk
3 tbs. oil
splash of vanilla
3 tbs. chocolate chips, optional, but they make it much better!

add dry ingredients to mug and mix well with fork. add egg, mix thoroughly. add milk, oil and vanilla and mix well. add chips, if using.
microwave for 3 minutes.


newspaper print and lace nails

aren't these fun?  paint nails a pale base color (i use revlon's gray suede) and let dry.  dip fingertip into rubbing alcohol and press newspaper (cut into squares) onto nail and hold tightly for a few seconds.  gently peel away and finish with a top coat.

these don't last as long as the printed nails, but they are perfect for a night out.  to apply, lightly spray nails with adhesive and press lace onto nails.  trim with small scissors and apply a top coat
(not just clear nail polish).
thanks to pinterest for inspiring me.


sweet cream ice cream


2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

cook mixture on stovetop, stirring constantly, until sugar is just dissolved.  (this only takes about 5 minutes.)  chill well and make in ice cream maker.  this makes enough for 4-6 people.  you really should put it in the freezer for an additional 2 hours because it is quite soft, but that's awfully hard to do when you have toddlers holding empty bowls in anticipation.

it is good plain, but there could be endless varieties. 
here are two that i've tried:

strawberry: chop 1 lb. fresh strawberries and puree 1/2 of them.  mix puree into milk and cream before chilling, and stir in remaining when ice cream is frozen..

cookies and cream:  crush 20 oreos and add to frozen ice cream. 
(my homemade oreos would be perfect for this.)


crayon stains

just in case anyone needs to know, WD-40 is magic for cleaning crayon off surfaces.  i have one little pack of "unwashable" crayons in my desk, and my youngest managed to find them.  i am doing a little remodeling around the house, but orange and purple "ovals" on my tiled kitchen floor weren't exactly what i had in mind.