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Showing posts from March, 2013

Streusel-Filled Coffee Cake for Easter Morning

This delicious and memorable coffee cake recipe is my mom's who originally discovered it from Betty Crocker. My mom baked this coffee cake for special Sunday mornings like Mother's Day and Father's Day when I was growing up. I always loved eating it for breakfast and I'd never make it myself until today. Darn, it wasn't too hard-I could have been making it all these years! I cut myself two pieces and ate them warm out of the oven. Tomorrow is Easter and this coffee cake will be the perfect breakfast along with hard boiled eggs and sausages. My mom will also be making this for her Easter breakfast. How did you think I got the idea to make it? I love the streusel topping. I love the moistness of the cake part. Its the perfect combination of flavors!

Streusel-Filled Coffee Cake


1 1/2 flour
2 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 c. shortening
1 egg
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 t. salt
3/4 c. milk
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 t. cinnamon
1/2 c. chopped nuts, we use pecans and wal…

In Black and White

When I first started learning about photography I shot only black and white. At the Art Institute we used all film and I depended on my trusty Nikon FM 2 to carry me through. And carry me through it did. I learned about exposures, tones and zones for black and white and would spend hours developing all my film. I loved the feeling of satisfaction as I presented my prints to the class.

Today in 2013, things are pretty easy when it comes to black and white processing. Just shoot your photos on your digital camera and turn them into black and white in photoshop. You still get beautiful photography with even tones and shadows. The art form's still there, we just spend more time on our computers instead of the photo lab. All in all, its still all about the composition of your images. And that part will never change.

Below are ten of my favorite digital black and white photographs. My wish for you is that you're inspired to get out and compose some of your own. Wheth…

Key Lime Pie for National Pi Day and St. Paddy's

Did you know today is National Pi Day? Think about it. Today's date is 3-14 just like the math equation 3.14, something I actually do remember from math class.  Twenty five years ago they started National Pi Day.  It may sound silly but anything that gives us an excuse to eat pie or pizza is good enough for me. 

To celebrate today, I made Key Lime Pie.  Its actually a healthy version and mostly fat-free plus it uses key lime yogurt.  I found the recipe on  If you are trying to eat more yogurt or trying to get your kids to, this pie recipe is for you.  I also like the addition of the fresh lime juice to tarten it up.  This pie isn't rich so it belongs more in the snack family. Sometimes there's nothing wrong with a healthy dessert.  I just try to avoid that, I mean, if your going to eat dessert, eat dessert! 

Since St. Patricks Day is in a few days, I also wanted to make a green food to celebrate.  As a kid, St. Paddy's was my least favorite holiday.  I nev…

Senior Portraits

Things to Know When Booking Senior Pictures Its almost that time of year to start thinking about Senior Portraits. If you or your son or daughter is a Junior in High School then the time to book your Portraits has arrived. The summer between Junior and Senior year is normally when these kinds of photos are taken. The school needs a photo for the annual around October of Senior year, plus you'll want to be ready to hand out wallets to friends and to also include pictures in Graduation Announcements. Below are some helpful hints to remember when getting Senior Photos done.
1. Bring at least three different outfits to pose in. I advise my Seniors to wear one dressy outfit and one casual. If they play sports, then a soccer or basketball uniform is always fun, too. Sometimes bringing khaki pants and a polo shirt can be a good balance to the dressy and casual. Basically, just mix it up and play around with your wardrobe. Make sure you are presentable and don't forget to we…

Banana Crumb Muffins

Ripe Bananas.  You know what that means? Time to bake!  As a kid my mom would whip up some banana muffins for breakfast.  When I woke up and wandered into the kitchen while wiping sleep out of my eyes, I'd breathe in the aroma of bananas and brown sugar while she pulled them out of the oven.  These muffins taste like banana bread but they have the added factor of a crumbly brown sugar and butter topping which is added before baking.  When they're done they have a nice crackly, crunchy and sweet texture.

Banana Crumb Muffins

My mom originally found this recipe in Taste of Home.

Yield:  About 1 dozen muffins


1-1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
3/4 c. sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/3 c. butter or margarine, melted
1/3 c. packed brown sugar
1 T. all-purpose flour
1/8 t. ground cinnamon
1 T. butter or margarine


In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients.  Combine bananas, sugar, egg and …