Monday, November 8, 2010

My Newest Toy

I am so in love!  If you like to make sugar cookies then you need to get the Message-in-Cookie Cutter from Williams Sonoma. 
Message-in-a-Cookie Cutters
It's amazing and super easy to use.  My 10 year old daughter used all three to make cookies to celebrate her new baby cousin.  So cool!

Not bad for a 10 year old!  You can use these for so many different occasions.  Thank you cookies, Get well cookies, Congratulations cookies or how about I'm sorry cookies.  I love it!

Sunday, November 7, 2010


I don't know about you, but I've been hearing a lot of talk lately about happiness.  Maybe it's the economy or maybe technology, but people seem to be seeking happiness in much simpler ways.  Most of the talk I am hearing isn't from people who are sad or depressed, just people who in the rat race of life are looking for ways to be happier.  I have just finished reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, which is a memoir of Gretchen's search for what brings her happiness. 

I found the book to be very insightful and inspiring.  It all just made so much sense to me.  A couple of things that resonated with me were doing things that didn't bring you happiness, but that you thought SHOULD bring you happiness.  That was eye opening.  There are so many things that I wish I loved to do.  I wish I enjoyed being active and the "outdoorsy" type, but that's not me.  Gretchen came to the conclusion that if it didn't bring her happiness then she shouldn't try to be something she's not.  Through this project, she became more mindful of the things that did bring her happiness like her family and her writing and so she spent time nurturing that. 

As I was finishing the book, I saw on Gretchen's blog that her book is going to be made into a TV series and Kristin Davis (Charlotte from Sex and the City) will be playing the lead role.  I was so super excited and so happy for Gretchen.  I will continue to read her blog and I just may start my own happiness project.  If you are interested in starting your own happiness project, Gretchen has a "happiness toolkit" available for free on her blog.  You should also sign up for her monthly newsletter!

Cake Boss

My daughter, Julia, and I went to a book signing in Boston for Buddy Valastro from Cake Boss, the hit TV show on TLC.  We got to the Barnes & Noble in Kenmore Square at 10:30 AM and waited in line for 2 hours to meet Buddy and have him sign our book.  To our amazement, we were the first in line and well, that has its benefits.  There was a picture of Julia and Buddy in the Boston Herald and we were just so excited.  I have started reading his book Cake Boss: Stories and Recipes from Mia Famiglia and I am loving it so much.

He is so nice in person and such a cutie!  It was fun to meet him and such a great day!!

The Secret Life of Bees

The Booktini gals got together to discuss The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd.  We all enjoyed this beautifully written heartfelt story about a mother-daughter relationship, forgiveness and friendship.  Lilly is an amazing young girl seeking answers to the questions she has about her mother.  Her journey leads her to three sisters who have a honey bee farm.  It is there that she learns the truth about her mother and also learns to forgive herself.  It is such a moving story.  My favorite character is August.  She is comforting, wise and patient and exactly what Lilly needs right now in her young life.  This is Sue Monk Kidd's best work and I highly recommend it!  I also loved the movie, which stars Queen Lahtifa and Dakota Fanning. 

So, keeping with the bee theme, I made these adorable honey-lemon cupcakes:

Bernadette, another Booktini gal, brought a bottle of honey for each of us.  So fun!!  These are the little things that make book club so much fun!  We also have our next pick thanks to winning a book giveaway over at Book Movement!  We will be reviewing A Disobedient Girl by Ru Freeman in January.

We are each reviewing our own pick for November.  This is the first time we'll be doing this so I'll let you know how it works out!