Thursday, April 24, 2008

Mother's Day Garden Party Recipe Day!

Happy Thursday! Today the ladies at are kicking off our Mother's Day Garden Party Shop Hop and Blog Hop festivities! Today is Recipe Sharing Day!

I have two yummy cake recipes to share with you today that you may want to try for your Mother's Day celebration or to give as gifts to your family and friends.

This is a recipe that you may see around on different recipe sites, but ours is one my husband has perfected and that is now a family favorite recipe. Most people refer to this cake as Coca-Cola cake, but you can use any favorite caramel colored cola soft drink to make it, you can even use Diet Coke, not that it makes this a diet cake, but if you are like me, that what I drink, so I always have it on hand!



* 1 cup caremel colored cola soft drink -(Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Pepsi, Big K Cola)
* 1/2 cup buttermilk
* 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
* 1 3/4 cups sugar 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1/4 cup cocoa

* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
* Coca-Cola Frosting (recipe is listed below this one)
* Garnish: 3/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted, if desired


* Stir cola and buttermilk together; set aside
* Beat butter at low speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar; beat until blended. Add egg and vanilla; beat at low speed until blended.
* Combine flour, cocoa, and soda. Add to butter mixture alternately with cola mixture; begin and end with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended.
* Stir in marshmallows. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13- x 9-inch pan.
* Bake at 350° for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes.
Prepare Coca-Cola Frosting (below) while cake is baking
* Pour Coca-Cola Frosting over warm cake; garnish with pecans, if desired.



* 1/2 cup butter or margarine
* 1/3 cup Coca-Cola
* 3 tablespoons cocoa
* 1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar
* 1 tablespoon vanilla extract


* Bring first 3 ingredients to a boil in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring until butter melts
* Remove from heat, whisk in sugar and vanilla
* Frost cooled cake in pan. When cooled score into bar shapes, cut and serve!

I have no idea what the nutritional values are for this cake. Just have some, life's to short not to enjoy good cake!

So, ok, if you really really can't have the full sweet goodness of the cake, then maybe you'll enjoy this very yummy Low Fat Banana Pudding Recipe! You will not be able to tell it is Low Fat!

You can make this good old fashioned Banana Pudding dessert with all the creamy texture and flavor, but in a lite version with less than 3 grams of fat per serving! Please your family, especially kids! This is not a hard receipe at all ... If I can make it, anyone can make it! It is delicious for dessert - a great alternative to chocolate and other heavy desserts. I was so proud of my first time making it that I really did take a picture of it... here it is:

Lowfat Banana Pudding


  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

  • dash of salt

  • 2 1/2 cups 1% low fat milk

  • 1 (14 oz.) can fat-free sweetened condensed milk

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 3 cups sliced ripe bananas

  • Approx. 45-60 reduced-fat vanilla wafers

  • 4 egg whites

  • 1/4 cup sugar


  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees farenheit

  • Separate egg yolks from the whites of 4 eggs, discard or save 2 of the yolks for another use/recipe), leaving you with 2 egg yolks and 4 egg whites for this recipe
  • Slice bananas into approximately 1/4 inch slices until you have 3 cups of banana slices

  • Combine flour and salt and put in a medium sized saucepan

  • Stir in low-fat milk and sweetened condensed milk, and egg yolks, mixing all together gradually

  • Cook over medium heat for 8 minutes or until thickened, stir constantly

  • Remove from heat and add vanilla, stir to blend and set aside

  • Arrange 1 cup of the banana slices to cover bottom of a 2 quart baking dish
    line edges of dish with vanilla wafers

  • Spread one-third of the pudding mixture over bananas

  • Top pudding mixture with vanilla wafers (approx. 15 to 20 wafers)

  • Repeat layers twice, ending with pudding on top

  • Arrange vanilla wafers around inside edge of dish, puching wafers gently into the pudding

  • Make meringue by beating egg whites at high speed with an electric mixer until foamy, add 1 tablespoon of sugar at a time while continuing to beat, until stiff peaks form and sugar dissolves. This takes about 2 to 4 minutes.

  • Spread meringue over the top of the pudding, sealing to the edge of the baking dish

  • Bake at 325 degrees for 25 minutes or until meringue is a golden color

  • Cool for 30 minutes Store leftovers (ha!) in a covered container in refrigerater. Yields 10 servings.

I am really looking forward to gathering some great new recipes from all my MMP friends. Be sure and check out the list of participants in Shop Hop and Blog Hop and visit all around. Enjoy the parties and the shopping!!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Show and Tell Monday

I've been trying to start up my Show and Tell Monday blogpost for the past 2 or 3 weeks and didn't feel like I'd finished anything enough to boast about in show and tell. I wanted it to be about products I am creating, and I AM creating some pretty pretty things, just need to finish them ... so for those - I'll aim for next Monday.

Today I'll share what I did in my studio this past week. Now, mind you my studio is a serious work in progress, as it is currently the unfinished basement of my home. I'm very happy that I have loads of space, I've taken over two rooms that give me a 40' x 15' workspace.
(you can click the pics to see more detail)
Unfortunately it's still concrete and frame walls and no windows yet on my end of the house. So, I decided I needed some color and didn't want to wait for actual walls, so I painted the concrete and stapled some pretty Amy Butler fabric up on the wood frame to improve the ambiance down here. Well, it is prettier for sure. I didn't get the fabric up there perfectly straight, but it was not as easy as I thought it was going to be! So it is what it is until I get real walls! At least now, I am more motivated to come down here to work. It's hard to stay creatively motivated in a grey environment.

And here's the office side of the room. Maybe next week I'll be brave enough to show the actual workroom side (I'll have to clean it up a bit, you would think a fabric tornado had spawned in there at the moment. I did snag some great big nice and brand new bins to put my fabric in this weekend at a garage sale this weekend, so once I've organized the "fabric store" I'll share the other half of my studio!
Oh, and my brother (the homebuilder!) finally visited my house yesterday and promised to come up for a weekend and help us finish out the electrical for the entire basement. Once we get that done the walls can go up! I am visualizing walls down here by mid-summer!! YAY!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Garden Party for Mother's Day - Shop Hop at MMP

Garden Party - Shop Hop - Blog Hop - Mother's Day Celebrations

It is my pleasure to invite all to join with me and all my PINK friends at Make Mine Pink to celebrate in our First Annual Mother's Day Garden Party Shop Hop and Blog Hop. We will be celebrating all the Mothers in your life~ whether it is your Grandmother, your Mother, your Step Mother, Adoptive Mother, a friends Mother, your Aunt, Sister or Daughter ~ and Yourself for that matter!

It's quite obvious that my mother is always at the heart of all that I do and all that I am. I was blessed to have the sweetest, smartest, most beautiful and humble and loving mother any girl could ever dream of and even though she was taken from my life far too early, she is still with me every moment, her very essence lives in me and my children. So of course, celebrating Mother's Day is a very special thing for me to do ... and sharing it with you makes it even sweeter!

What a wonderful idea it is for us all to come together to celebrate the change of seasons, to find beautiful gifts to give to our loved ones and to ourselves, to welcome in the sunshine and flowers of Spring, to share tea and recipes and stories and memories! I hope you will visit and enjoy the special treats I'll have to offer over the next couple of weeks leading up to Mother's Day.

Here's a peek at what we have in store for you , here on Mama's Pocketbook Blog, and throughout the Blog Hop, and at, and at all the lovely shops participating in the Shop Hop!

Thursday, April 24 ~ I'll share some favorite recipes

Monday, April 28~ A Mother's Day Gift Guide

Thursday, May 1 ~ May Day - A Celebration of Flowers and May Baskets

Monday, May 5 ~A Special Spring Giveaway!!

Thursday, May 8 thru Sunday, May 11 ~ Mothers Day Events, sharing memories, anecdotes, pictures and life's little lessons.

Be sure to bookmark my blog and please leave comments! I love comments!! And be sure to visit the shops participating in the Shop Hop. I'll be highlighting some of the lovely goodies and events being offered around our MMP Network that you won't want to miss.

Please sign up for my Mama's Pocketbook Newsletter too, if you haven't already!


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Memories and Inspiration

I took this photo of my daughter this past weekend and was struck by how much she looked like my mother in the photo I use on the website and here on my blog. So I decided to set the photos side by side to compare and one thing led to another and I got creative (as usual!) and this is what I ended up with. I really love it.

I'm not very good at digital scrapbooking and am just beginning to dabble in it, but it could easily become an obsession. Especially since it never occured to me until I was messing about with these photos that I could have a picture of my mother and me and my daughter together even though that was never possible in "real life".

Yes, I'm sure I could spend all day manipulating pictures and coming up with new ways to decorate a page with them. This is why I have shyed away from scrapbooking because something else would have to give in order for me to have time to play around with all I could do in this medium. I think I'll have to get a maid and an assistant so I can do more fun stuff like this!!

Ok, back to sewing! I'll post more soon!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Amy Butler Sweet Life Sale - Last 3 bags!

I only have three of Amy Butler's first issue Sweet Life bags left in stock, so I am offering them at a great price to the first three lucky customer's to snag this deal .... yep... first come, first served.

Go to my website Mama' s Pocketbook - all the details are there on the front page!

I'd write more about this, but my daughter just called and I have to go and pick her up. Mom's taxi on duty! Happy Shopping!! XOXO, Dianne