Cooking 101 - Summer Strawberry No-Bake Cheesecake

We had a fun little pot-luck lunch today with the women from my church and this is what I brought to share. You know - because it's LOADED with vitamin-rich strawberries and bone building dairy. Who needs a sandwich when you could have THIS?

This dessert is sweet, tangy, and oozes summertime! You have to try it. It only takes TEN MINUTES TO MAKE, which is a huge bonus. Be sure you can give the rest of this away after you have a piece because you'll eat the whole thing.

Summer Strawberry No-Bake Cheesecake

2 c. Graham cracker crumbs
6 Tbsp. Butter, melted
1/4 c. Sugar

Mix together, press firmly onto bottom of 9 x 13" pan. Refrigerate while preparing filling.

4 pkgs. (8 oz) Light cream cheese, softened (like THAT'S gonna make a big difference if you use "light"!)
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. Strawberry preserves
2 c. Fresh strawberries, chopped
1 tub (8 oz) Cool Whip, thawed**
Chopped nuts (optional)

Beat cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer until well blended. Add strawberries and preserves, mix well. Stir in whipped topping until combined. Spread over crust, sprinkle with nuts if you like nuts; cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or until firm.

**If you don't have Cool Whip, combine 1 1/2 c. heavy whipping cream and 1/4 to 1/2 c. sugar; beat on medium speed with an electric mixer until stiff.


No Rest For the Weary

I know, I know - I can hear it now..."Why have a blog when you're NEVER posting?!" I feel your frustration. I'm irritated at myself, too. However, I can assure you that there have been many distractions in my world. First of all, I LOVE MY BEAUTIFUL BABIES - but what in the heck am I supposed to do with them for another 5 weeks?! We've done all there is to do in one summer - can't they start school in August like normal people? (oh yeeeaaaah...because we live in the ARCTIC.)

We finger paint, we play outside, we ride bikes, we splash in water, we've gone swimming, we go to the library, we read, we color, we play games...now what? I need a farm, that's what. I need them to be so tired from working all day that they don't need me to entertain them. Problem solved.

In the meantime, we've painted our foyer "New Brick" and I absolutely LOVE it!

And while we were at it, I decided that the guest bathroom needed to be not white anymore, so it's now "Brown Eyes" and I LOVE that, too!

Notice I've got that kid in every photo - I can't even use the bathroom without him following me! (but he's pretty rad, so I'll keep him.)

AND...I finished part of my living room curtains! I still have the valance to finish - it's going to drop down just to where the window starts, attached by those rings, as well. Very exciting.

AND!!! My fabric co-op order came in and I couldn't be more excited! The Amy Karol book and two Amy Butler patterns - AWESOME. (your name needs to be Amy in order for people to take you seriously...)

So that's all, folks. No more excitement here. We're off to Wal Mart to get more Nerf darts so we can have a dart gun war. Hey - I'm running out of options here.


Thousands of Americans every day prepare for BATTLE. The focus is intense, we're NOT going to lose today...we are lean, mean, driving a speed machine. (well, not if you have a Ford Taurus.)

The battle I am speaking of is the Stop Light Fight. Does anybody have that ONE LIGHT that you fight with EVERY TIME YOU NEED TO GET SOMEWHERE?! (or is it just me that has this rage within me to smash stop lights with a big, long, spiky instrument?)

Okay, picture this with me: As I leave my subdivision, there's only ONE ROAD that takes me where I need to go. To my left are 3 lights within view; to my right are three lights WITHIN THREE FEET OF EACH OTHER. One light for the people at the gas station, one light for the people getting off the freeway, and another light for the other people getting off the freeway in the other direction. THIS ISN'T LOS ANGELES, folks.

The particular light I despise and wish to destroy is the light at the gas station. NOBODY EVER NEEDS IT. There is NEVER anybody waiting there, so why not put sensors on it or something?! I'm always racing off somewhere, usually late to something, and that light will GET ME every time. I sit there, cursing it, hating it, wishing I could be just a little less law-abiding and push on through it and defy the purpose of which it stands. But alas, I can't do it. I'm a chicken. So I wait. And I wait alone. Time moves slowly onward, as NOBODY is utilizing the green light on the other side. There are no cars - there never are.

All I have to keep me going are those sweet, small victories when I drive on through that light as it turns yellow. Only to stop at the next one 3 feet away. Hey - that's okay. As long as I beat the one at the gas station, I'm a winner.


Enjoying Summer

For those of you wondering if I've been holed up in a cave, (sounds nice, though) I've just been having a BLAST enjoying these fleeting summer months! I haven't done much by way of projects being that it's summer and we're ALWAYS outside doing something - but that just means that my projects pile is getting bigger!

In the meantime - check out how much fun a $6.00 wading pool can be when placed on a trampoline with three bored children! Sweet.

And my lilies are officially bloomed. I absolutely LOVE this color.

For those of you needing something fun to do, check out these sites:
Molly Chicken - fabric pom pom hangers
Joy's Hope - cute tubs
Make and Takes - stuff to do with kids

AND!!! On the Food Network last night, we watched "Food Network Challenge" and the challenge was PIES! Each contestant had to make three different pies and were judged on each one - my mouth was WATERING through the whole episode!!! So here is the link for all of the recipes!


Last Call

You can run, but you can't hide...

For those of you who HAVEN'T sent off your aprons, it would be absolutely fantastic if you'd send something! Those poor girls who are still waiting - I can't hold them off any longer - some of them are foaming at the mouth...

Just kidding, but seriously folks, SEND YOUR APRONS. I don't want to put your names on my "Wall of Shame" but I will if I have to. This apron swap is on good faith and it's not cool when you commit and then don't follow through.

IF YOU HAVEN'T RECEIVED AN APRON, please email me. It is possible that I've missed one of you so please let me know who you are. Thanks! abbywelker(at)yahoo(dot)com


Happy 4th!

Hi All! I hope you had a WONDERFUL Independence Day! We all had a blast (haha) and I thought I'd share some highlights from our local parade.

First of all, I love these classy old cars with the polished chrome accents. I thought this photo represented good old-fashioned America. Can you imagine people back in the 1930's and 1940's considering the fact that their bright, new, innovative cars would become antiques and outdated?! Thank goodness for people who restore these old beauties to their original grandeur!

And this was too great not to share - a local grocery store always has their shopping cart brigade at the 4th of July parade! There's always music and they do a dance with the carts - tipping them up, turning them around, and skipping all around. Unfortunately, we were on a downhill part of the road so they didn't do anything cute in front of us.

And, last but not least - who could resist the rent-a-husband?! Ingenious! I'm pretty lucky and I've got access to a great-looking, handy husband of my own, but to all those lonely ladies out there - YOU CAN RENT ONE, GIRLS!!! SWEEEEET!!! And I thought pizza delivery was convenient...