Friday, March 30, 2012

One meal muffin

It's 10 pm. The toys have been cleaned up, I've finished my second round of vacuuming up the kitchen, the washing machine and the dryer are endlessly spinning around and around and LoLo is peacefully sleeping in bed. The last compulsory task of the day that remains is making lunch for school for the next day. A boiled egg and a sandwich is always a hit with LoLo and so I get the turkey and cream cheese out of the fridge and realize that I forgot to buy bread at the store.
What now? I'll make savory muffins for them and stuff as many veggies as possible .. came the idea to me. I pulled up a few blogs, mixed and matched the ingredients on screen and on the fridge (I never seem to have everything that any recipe calls for) and the results were so delicious I just have to share it here ...

1 cup of all purpose white flour
1 cup of whole wheat (I use organic whenever I can)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 cup low-fat milk
juice from 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large egg
1 cup of Trader Joe's broccoli slaw
6-7 sundried tomato slices chopped
6-7 finely chopped leaves of fresh basil (don't substitute for dried basil)

1. Preheat the oven to 375 F
2. Mix all ingredients together in the order from top to bottom
3. Fill cupcake pan with liners or grease and fill evenly with dough
4. Bake about 18 minutes on the top rack until the top of the muffins feel firm and a skewer inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean.
5. Enjoy and freeze if you'd like

P.S. I Lo(LO)Ve baking muffins - it's my ultimate one dirty mixing bowl recipe with hardly any clean up afterwards. If that's not an incentive to making muffins I don't know what is :) 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Toddler Apron

Saskia (my husband's college friend) is expecting a baby this May and when I got an invitation I decided to make it personal :) (the gift for the little munchkin). I knew a diaper cake wasn't the best idea, when her adorable sister emailed me back saying she will happily serve the cake at the event.
I came up with the idea of a toddler apron, because Saskia just started a new blog called "Bella Baking" and thought that baking will probably be something she will surely teach to her daughter and enjoy.

I fished out some pink and red/white checkered fabric, a pom pom ribbon (I love anything pom pom) and started drafting a pattern. I adore aprons of all kinds, but I have to tell you, I can not stand flimsy aprons! Not that I want mine to be bendable and sit in front of the TV watching cupcake wars, but those that collapse in the wash and you have to spend hours ironing them - those are my enemies!!! So, I dug out interfacing from some box from underneath our bed (Yes, we sleep on a top of craft treasures! Fabrics, buttons, hole punchers, ribbons, papers .. you name it!)

This is what I did:
1. I cut out the pattern 3 times from 2 different fabrics and the interfacing adding a quarter inch for the seams. Download the pattern below. As you see, the pattern has only two pages - the half of the apron. You may want to print out 4 pages and tape it accordingly so that you get the full shape of the apron OR you can fold your fabric half and cut it out that way. If you want to make it more boyish, just make the bottom straight!

 Lo Lo Vie Toddler Apron

2. You'll need to cut out 4 straps 4" by 22". Two straps are for the neck and two for the waist.
(Let's do the pocket later)

- Make a quarter inch seam at the end of all the straps
- Iron al the strips of fabric
- Fold in the middle (lenghtwise) and iron again
- Open the folds and fold both side to the middle and iron again

- Cut out a piece of fabric 10" x 4"
- Cut out interfacing with the same measurements
- NOW comes the personalization of the apron:
I took a screen shot of Saskia's blog, cut out the header and her motto and printed it on a fabric sheet (available at craft stores).

I then ironed the logo to the top of the pocket. However, when you print on fabric the colors are not as vibrant as on the site or as you would want them to be, so I decided to embroider the name of the blog "Bella Baking". I zig-zagged around the label and NOW, it looked just the way I imagined it would!

- I ironed on interfacing to the embroidered back of the pocket
- Make quarter inch hems on all sides, sew in place. If you follow these instructions, your pocket won't be exactly at the place where it shows on the pattern, as hemming takes up a bit of space.

- Put the apron parts together facing with right sides (where the pattern/pocket is) and sew around.

IMPORTANT! Don't forget to leave space for all your four straps!
- Turn the fabric back out and iron around the edges.
- Take your straps and sew in place
- Sew over once again around the entire apron as close to the edge as possible
- The ice cream cone on the side is a cut-out from a fabric and is appliqued to the pocket.

Take your pom-poms ribbon and hand sew around the edges.
IMPORTANT!  DO NOT IRON on the pom-poms because they will singe. (Don't ask me how I know this!)

 Now off you go sewing and checking Bella Baking for a recipe you can't resist!

Other toddler apron patterns you may like:

Well, the one I made from a shopping bag for painting HERE of course :)

Reversible Apron by

Boy Apron by

Child's Apron, Chef's Hat and Oven Mittens by Melissa Stramel on

Happy Cooking/Baking Everyone!

LO(Lo)V(i)E, LV

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Photo styling - shoes

I started a Photo Styling course at FIT and I am so excited about it! This is the first time I am going to school and studying what I actually like.

There will be 4 photo shoots during the semester - shoes, food, personal transformation and fashion. We are divided in groups of four and everyone plays a different role during the shoot. We've just completed the first shoot "shoes". The shoe was intended to tell the story, so we thought about gardening, English rose gardens and Betsy Johnson as themes for the set and decided to finally go with gardening ...

We tried many variations on the set - styling the shoes in pairs and separate, on a bed of roses, petals, dirt, stems ... etc. These three photos came out the best ...  

This was the teacher's and my favorite shot  
The placement of the two shoes on this photograph is "perfect" we were told :) 

The group's favorite ...

No wonder I am having hard time at photo compositions ... We tried so many options and angles and placements of these shoes before we got these ... 

Lo(lo)V(i)E to all! I'll back with a tutorial!