"We are what we believe we are."
C.S. Lewis

Monday, November 26, 2012

Mop Philosophy Monday

 I made this really delicious chocolate cake with pumpkin on Saturday, it was so easy.
You can see the recipe here.
It was a fairly forgiving recipe: I didn't have applesauce so I used extra pumpkin, I didn't have any cream left so I just used milk.  Of course I was too lazy to make the icing so I melted some dark chocolate and drizzled it all over the top: a soothing activity if ever there was.

 It pleases me no end to sneak vegetables into things like chocolate cake, I like to think I'm tricking the rascals.
The finished cake on the cake plate known as the "TA-DA!" cake plate.
I've been cleaning cupboards in my kitchen again, taking everything out, giving it a dust, having a look at what needs using up.  Another soothing activity.
The baking cupboard.
 I organize my kitchen by zones, how about you?
The baking cupboard is in fact three cupboards all shoved in one corner containing all manner of baking supplies and tins.  This week I'll be baking Piggy Cookies for Christmas, it's an old family recipe from the Austrian side of MrBP's family.  It took me 10 years to get that recipe!

Well I have finished decorating my garden shed but I'm not very pleased with the results.
You have eyes, you can see for yourself it didn't turn out very well, but why?  Does it need ribbons?  Is it because the wreath on the right looks a little thin?  Could it be the unsightly tools seen through the window?
I hope your week is off to an excellent start.
xoDani

50 comments:

  1. I think it IS pretty as is, but if you want to spark it up even further, some kind of color punch might do the trick. The colors currently are all muted and greyed, which makes it visually soothing but not visually sparkly. Does that make sense? You have a great eye, and there's nothing out of whack with the result you've generated!

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    1. It's pretty, but I agree. You need some colour.

      I woiuld use only one wreath, and perhaps a couple of large shiny ornaments in the windows?

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    2. Thanks greatbleu, and Rose: shiny ornaments my favourite.

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  2. Oh I love the shed decorations Dani, truly! No need for perfection. Like I tell my son, perfect is boring. Maybe a bow for a spot of color? So jealous you have a shed. The cake looks delicious!

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    1. Hi M, We don't have a garage, our house is old and urban and in fact our car has to park on the stones in our front garden, we don't even have a separate driveway here. The key with the shed is to keep it from getting crapped up. Your bow idea is a good one, if only I could find one I like!

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  3. Your shed looks really pretty, but for Christmas, I'd paint the door a Santa/Rudolph's Nose Red. Your cake looks much better than the one in the recipe - really yummy!

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    1. Hi Sulky, I think the melted chocolate is a better topping for this cake than the icing in the recipe, it looks better too let's face it. Santa red, my favourite these days!

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  4. That's the shed? I am moving in! Dani its stunning.

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    1. Tabs - I am with you - we could move in together. I will bring my indoors Christmas stuff for you!

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    2. I want to live there too, it's going to be crowded.

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    3. I think the key will be ensuring that Dani cooks for us. She can certainly ley my clothes out every day!

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    4. I think I won't let you stay in the shed, you do know the mad squirrels take over that place in the cold weather?

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  5. i think your shed is darling. perfect wreaths would look wrong on it. this is so much better!

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    1. Janet so true we don't want it to look perfectly decorated, that's a bit stuffy!

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  6. Your shed is darling. The fact that you took the time to make it look festive impresses me to no end! The cake looks divine.

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    1. Hi Julie, I bet your boys would like that cake and sneaking vegetables in is always good fun!

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  7. I think the shed is adorable, maybe your perfectionist eye thinks the proportions would work better if the largest wreath were the one in the middle? Welcome to the Overthinking Generation!

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    1. Fred, I know you're right and I should just let it alone for goodness sakes. In fact now that a couple of days have passed it's not bugging me anymore!

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  8. Yummy cake!

    How about some sprigs of red berries mixed in with the greens in the window box? I wouldn't do ribbon - this looks very appropos to me and I think the red berries would simply echo your door nicely! Okay - gotta get some greens on the way home...

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    1. WMM, love this berry idea, where can I get some? I need a vast country property to pillage!

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    2. Plant nursery is my favourite haunt! They always have red berries or mistletoe this time of year!

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  9. well the wreaths are fine perhaps too much of a good thing in such a small space-- perhaps a swag on the windows or a vertical element or as you suggest a ribbon a red bow. have a cup of tea a slice of cake and study the shed perhaps what you think is missing will then reveal itself.

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    1. Hi Anon, True story there are a lot of wreaths shoved on to the shed, maybe that's it, thank you!

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  10. Hi Dani.
    That cake looks fabulous - can I order it for when we next visit at your house? I hope there is some left over for you to have for a mid-afternoon pick-me-up.

    Yesterday, I decorated our front porch - what a job it is to get just right. I think your shed looks lovely but how about putting a golden ribbon bow on the wreath on the door. I'd take down the wreaths on the windows and find another home for them. I like WMM's idea of adding some berries in the window boxes for a little colour. Berries would feed the birds too.

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    1. Hi Ade, I bet your front porch looks gorgeous! I want to see it!

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  11. Dani, The shed looks great . If you are unhappy , I agree with the others ,a punch of color will do the trick .Perhaps a wide plaid ribbon on the door and some holly with red berries stuffed in the boxes will do just the trick.Is that snow already in your window boxes? Love the color of the shed door.Take a sample of the color to the store if you decide to go with the ribbon idea,it helps to hold ribbons up to it and decide. The cake looks delicious ,is their any left?Keep up the good work you are such an inspiration!!! Its still November you are way ahead of everyone else. P.S. The cookies sound interesting .Can you share the recipe?

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    1. Hi Anon, The cake is long long gone. Yes we have snow, not much but actually I see flurries outside right now!

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  12. SHED HEAVEN Piggy cookies? Given I love a chocolate hedgehog or an olive penguin, have to ask for details, like Anon.
    I think a perfectly imperfect shed is best and am clapping hands that you've done yours up. But with greatbleuheron and others on the monotone and balance factors. I think bigger wreath for the door (focal point) and some red holly/ berries for either the window boxes OR the two window wreathes would add that final fillip. I am not one for bows tho'. Do agree with Sulky that a scarlet door would probably be the alternative stand-out. But painting in cold during other renos seems OTT and not festive fun. If the tool and stuff show-through REALLY bothers you, window frosting film is easy (roll, ruler and a plastic credit card to smooth out any bubbles).
    But again, I think you should do one final tweak, if YOU want to, and then shed any doubts, relax and enjoy (a slice of that choc cake wouldn't hurt.) Happy Mop Monday Dani!

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    1. GF the piggy cookies are a big hit and very easy. Maybe you could help me find a pig-shaped cookie cutter though, where can I get that? I would love to paint the door but it's too cold now, the paint wouldn't take!

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  13. This is the prettiest shed I've ever seen!
    If you want to experiment maybe you can spray paint the wreaths with silver sparkly paint?
    I think I would remove the green from the window boxes but not sure what to put there, maybe pink candles?

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    1. ajc, I know to bring out the pink tones of the door would be nice! Thanks for the good suggestions. :)

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  14. I am in love with your shed. Ah! Throw a red bow on the door wreath and it'll be perfect!

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    1. JCrewJD, I think you're right, now I just need to find nice ribbon, I bought some Martha Stewart stuff and it's the worst ribbon I ever saw.

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  15. Oh Dani, your cake looks so yummy!!! This chocolate, oh my god! I think in another life I should have been a baker :-)
    I love you shed! Have you made the wreaths? They look lovely... I agree with others, may be a small touch of color...

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    1. Hi Steph, no I bought the wreaths for cheap at the grocery store, they are not the best. ISn't that melted chocolate looking so delicious?

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  16. Dani, your shed looks fantastic. So warm and cozy. Perfect. I can't look at cakes, or anything like that. I'm so fat from the holidays already. But, it looks great.

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    1. Kathy I doubt very much you are fat from the the holidays already! I have to say though I do avoid eating sweets, it's bad enough all of the olives and wine and bread I'm consuming these days.

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    2. My jeans say otherwise. But you're right, it's a slippery slope, all the wine, cheese, and bread, not sweets for me either.

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    3. Kathy I use the jean test too, it works. I'd rather give up sweets entirely than give up wine and bread!

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  17. Absolutely sweet decor on the shed...looks truly inviting! Would a few silver balls be gilding the lily? Will make the cake for my mad, hungry men this week! I'll thank you for them myself!!

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    1. Rebecca my husband loves this cake, it is a filling dessert. Gilding the lily is what we're after these days!

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  18. Hi Dani,
    Thanks for the B.D. wishes yesterday.Paul McCartney was amazing and he played just under 3 hrs. A perfect weekend .
    The cake looks like trouble as I must get back on track as I've been bad for the past week. The shed looks great and my suggestion would be giant pine cones and plaid ribbon on the boxes. If I get in the dog house I know where I'm heading .

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    1. Marsha, allowed to be bad it was your birthday after all. Love the big pinecone idea especially, I think I have some in my Christmas box.

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    2. And Marsha I can't imagine you in maison du chien!!

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  19. The cake looks amazing! I wish I had a piece right now. Yes, I know it's breakfast time :) In my household it's DH who does the baking. Lots of old family recipes. I'm looking forward to butter tarts most of all.

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    1. DF I think cake for breakfast is a good idea. Lucky you with your baking DH!

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  20. Lovely shed, Dani. Doesn't it make you feel festive just to look at it? My kitchen will be scrubbed down soon. I have areas for baking, etc, but it makes sense only to me. Like my library, in every room of the house, but not alphabetical/categorical.

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    1. Lane if I'm ever feeling blah scrubbing down my kitchen is the best cure! I can see the shed from one of my kitchen windows and it does make me feel festive.

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  21. P.S. Leave the wreaths, take the cannoli...(if you don't know reference, bet Mr. BP does!)

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