cupcakes: pretty paper. true stories. {and scrapbooking classes with cupcakes.}: A cupcake of Christmas past

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A cupcake of Christmas past

Oh reliable internet access, how I miss you. Through a series of somewhat unfortunate events, we are technology-challenged in our new place for a while. Meaning we have no internet at home. Which is one of those things that sounds like no big deal…surely we have plenty to get on with in our dwindling city of cardboard boxes without wasting time by sitting in front of a screen, right? And ordinarily, I would say yes. But that’s kinda difficult when your job means you need to be online every day. Especially in December.

Suffice to say I am now at one with the internet hotspots in this part of the world. Things are getting done. And apparently our flat will join this century very, very soon. Which will be nice.

In the mean time I have been getting to grips with other sorts of technology. We have a dishwasher here, and I can’t tell you how happy this makes both of us. We both dread washing dishes, and that can make for a very dangerous situation indeed. It’s even a little two-person friendly washer. We also have a shocking bonus in a washer-dryer. Fluffy, hot towels for the first time in years! Please do not misunderstand me, as I really love England or I would never choose to live here, but the one thing that has constantly baffled me is the lack of dryers. Since space is at a premium, utility rooms are a luxury—that I understand—so washing machines end up in the kitchen. That I’m not totally sure I get, though the plumbing is there already, so I suppose it makes sense. Once you’ve ditched a kitchen cupboard for your washing machine, it’s not very convenient to ditch another for a dryer…leaving those not lucky enough to have space for a dryer to hang our washing to dry. This has proven difficult living in a flat with no garden to hang a washing line! Forgive me, but I really don’t like drying laundry in my living room. And even if we did have a garden…it does rain quite a few days of the year. So if you have never been to England, imagine yourself in a supermarket when you notice it has started to rain. Look around and you will undoubtedly see other shoppers picking up their mobile phones to call someone else at home and tell them to get the washing in, out of the rain. It is perfectly commonplace here, and yet it does seem to me a little like a comedy routine. Anyway…we can now dry things. In our kitchen. Don’t even have to swap machines or lose more cupboards. There is absolutely zero laundry in my living room right now, and that makes me gloriously happy.

Of course I have also been getting to know my new oven! It seems to be a bit more even than the last one (which had a habit of burning anything in the back right corner while leaving the front left corner totally uncooked) though it has its quirks, like not wanting to stop cooking. Ever. We’ll just have to keep eating, I suppose. It turns out that the little store with the pumpkin also had candy corn in for the autumn, so I couldn’t resist. {For Shaulean, who has been emailing me, the recipe is here. The only difference was that I left out the brandy butter—just regular cream cheese icing dusted with cinnamon.}

Once I got past the silly things like candy corn and Nutrageous bars, I started discovering other little gems, like the Ginger Curd in the top picture. For a tiny little shop, their collection of jams, curds and preserves is shocking and divine. Last year when I made these same cupcakes, the filling was inspired by just finding some ginger preserves. This year I found the ginger curd and whipped it up with some double cream, but otherwise the recipe for Gingerbread Latte cupcakes is just the same.

I had forgotten how pretty these look when they first come out of the oven.

The constant routine changes seem to have affected my ability to write about just one thing, so while I’m here, I’ll throw out these things that are blog posts in the back of my head:

*If you fancy a scrapping retreat in the spring, Karen Russell and I will be teaching at Scrap Fever and there is an early booking discount if you book by the 15th of December. So…you could put it on your Christmas list and hint a lot in the next day or two? So, so excited about that weekend.

*Issue two of You Can Craft is out now in the UK, and it has tons of tons of supplies with each issue. Perfect Christmas prezzie for someone you want to get crafting. Even if it is just so they will come over and craft with you. Which is perfectly fine. When you get this issue, see if you can spot the pillows from my living room!

*The girls who are journaling their Christmas are ohmygosh fabulous. Check out some of their work here for much red and green inspiration.

*Thank you to all the girls who cropped with me the last two weekends—in Enfield and Ipswich. It has been a fabulous end to the year for workshops!!

And now I better get back home and get to work on that ongoing project, as we have our first visitors this Friday!


12 December 2007

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5 Comments for A cupcake of Christmas past

  1. shaulean Says:

    yaaaaaaaaaaay, thank’s shimelle, off to try them this weekend with the kids.

  2. jen Says:

    oh my goodness- they look so yummy. i don’t suppose that you will be stopping by with a couple of those- so i might have to break down and bake. i will keep you updated.

  3. Anthea Goodman Says:

    Wow those cupcakes look gorgeous! My DH came up behind me while I was looking at them and said “oooh what’s that?” “Gingerbread Latte cupcakes” “oh, you’re on Shimelle’s blog again are you?”

    LOL… even my DH knows about your cupcake passion!!

    Truly, they look scrummy.

  4. Teresa Says:

    Hello from Singapore! I just recently rediscovered my love for baking and I’m really pouring out my love for it… Baking for friends’ birthday and so on… I was wondering what size star tip you are usingto ice your cupcakes…? I like its clean pretty-ness… :) care to share?

  5. Sports Jerseys Says:

    Wow Impressive! Your blog is very informative. However, it is pretty hard task but your post and experience serve and teach me how to handle and make it more simple and manageable.Thanks for the tips… Best regards.

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