Win it Wednesday – Tori Amos Contest & Giveaway!

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Tori Amos has been one of my all time favorite singers/songwriters dating way back to when I was in high school, which I can assure you, was many years ago! She’s been one of my biggest influences and inspirations regarding my own music and singing career. Although, I’m clearly not nearly as famous or successful! 😉 She’s an incredible talent with an eclectic and original sound and style, and is an amazing live performer. Yes, I’ve seen her. I also admire her continuous embodiment of female activism, and her involvement with RAINN throughout her music career.

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Peaches. The name alone makes me think of a boy from high school who showed his “peaches” to girls walking the hallways.  The name also reminds me of Ice Age and the code for giving birth to the wholly mammoth baby. But really, the true reason for my love of the name peaches is for all of the wonderful desserts I’m inspired to make.  Peach Pie, Peach Smoothies, Peach Tarts, Peach Cobbler, Peach Sorbet, Peach sauce for vanilla ice cream, Peach Galettes, Dehydrated Peaches, Peach Granita, …. the list goes on.


Vanilla Vodka Frosting

DANG!!! One of my best buddies and his girlfriend made some incredible infused vanillas as a Christmas gift.  I was the honorable recipient; though I had to win it amongst a gaggle of other friends during a annual Gard Crafty Christmas.  There was no way I was going to let these go to someone else with how much baking I do.

They are absolutely awesome.  Today while baking a vegan chocolate cake for my daughter Margeux’s sixth birthday, it was drizzling outside.  It was the best thing to be able to have her as my sous chef and to be amongst the gorgeous Washington setting.

Her request?  A heart shaped vegan chocolate cake filled with chocolate custard, frosted with vanilla, and decorated with chocolate dipped strawberries.  Okay. No problem there!  I just can’t wait to bite into a slice.  One more day. One more day.

The fact that I have been able to hinder my chocolate addiction and make a bag of dark chocolate chips last a month, is pretty impressive.  Truly!



2 cups of spectrum spread shortening

1 cup of coconut oil

2 Tbsp of vanilla vodka extract by Edwin & Lesha

1 pinch of sea salt

4 cups of sifted powdered sugar


With a kitchen aid stand up blender, place the spectrum spread into bowl and place on high speed until it is whipped.  Add the coconut oil and do the same.  Add the 2 Tbsp. of vanilla vodka extract along with a pinch of sea salt. Whip again at high speed.  On low speed, add the sifted powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time and slowly increase speed so that you don’t get a puff of powdered sugar in your face. Continue to add the powdered sugar until all of the sugar is mixed into the oil blend.  Allow to sit on counter covered until used for decorating your cake. Refrigerating it will harden the oils and make it too hard to spread.




Blackberry Tart with Banana Almond Creme and Honey Drizzle

One of my wonderfully made desserts……only problem, I didn’t write down a recipe. It was a little of this, and a little of that. A pinch here and a sprinkle and dash there.  I know what it all consisted of.  I could probably replicate it.  But seriously, being able to pick buckets full of berries is an insane privilege!