Friday, April 30, 2010

derby pie

Why not end on a sweet note? I love Derby Pie. Okay, I really love my version (that I got from a long time ago) of Derby Pie only because I like to use pecans instead of walnuts and got without a top crust. Here is a bit of history about the original Derby Pie -
The pie originated at the Melrose Inn here in Prospect, Kentucky (my parents stayed there when they came out for my wedding reception back in 1996). George Kern came up with the recipe for this delicious pie made up of walnuts, chocolate and a great crust. When trying to decide on a name, many family members had ideas of what it should be called. They put all the choices in a hat and drew out Derby Pie. In 1968 it became so popular that they registered that name and patented the recipe. To read more about it go to the official website here. It's so popular that you can buy it in the freezer section of the grocery store any time of the year.

Well, I will give you the version I prefer and you can try it or you can order your own Derby Pie here.
Chocolate Chip Pecan Pie from
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup and 2 Tbs. butter, melted
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 cup corn syrup
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch single crust (I use the frozen ones!)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large bowl, beat eggs until light and fluffy. Add sugar, flour, melted butter, salt, lemon juice, and corn syrup. Mix thoroughly, then stir in chocolate chips and pecans. Pour mixture into pie shell. Bake for 45 minutes until set and golden.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

more great derby stuff and links

I know the week isn't over, but with my kids getting out of school tomorrow for The Oaks, I feel like the end is near. I really love seeing Melissa's talent and the talent of her guest bloggers. It makes me want to go all out next year for Derby and get the decorations going early.

Today, I worse my Derby pendant. It's an old black and white photo of Secretariat - the Triple Crown Winner and winner of the Derby in 1973 and on the back is an old photo of Churchill Downs where the race is held.

Gage (my 5 year old) had stick horse races at preschool today and his teacher made them each their own horses out of felt and wrapping paper tubes. They are so cute and I am going to have to make sure that guy doesn't get broken too soon. You never know around this house. And, Mallory played with Black Nitro while Gage played with his new horse.

Check out this post at One Pretty Thing - it has a great Derby roundup. And, check out the guest post at The Polka Dot Chair. Great ideas for a Derby Party.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

the mint julep

I had never heard of a mint julep until the time I came with my husband to visit Kentucky during Derby time. I think we had been married about 2 years. There were ladies dressed up in old fashioned attire greeting arriving passengers at the airport by handing out bourbon ball candies. We went down to the Pegasus Parade. My father in law took us to the Seelbach Hotel for the famous Derby Brunch. And, we watched the Kentucky Derby and at Derby Pie. It was quite a Kentucky experience and I really loved it all. We didn't drink any mint juleps, but I did learn what they were and thought it fascinating that there was so much tradition in this one event.
Last year Bobby Flay was here for the Derby and I remember him having his own version of the mint julep that he was actually selling at Churchill Downs the day of the Derby. He was a preDerby host of a few events and his julep has a black berry twist to it.
Of course, the traditional mint julep is also popular because of the famous Kentucky Bourbon that is used in it. Here is a bit of the history about the drink. We are NOT alcohol drinkers, so this is a non alcohol version that would be great for all family members. It comes from a book (one that I love and use for parties) Drinks Without Alcohol by Jane Brandt

Kentucky Derby

4 or 5 mint sprigs

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 cups cold water

3/4 cup lemon juice, fresh

1 1/2 quart ginger ale

Wafer - thin lemon slices for garnish
Rinse mint and remove stems. Place sugar, water and lemon juice in a bowl, mix and then stir in mint leaves. Allow to stand for 30 minutes. Fill large pitcher with ice cubs, and strain liquid over the ice. Add ginger ale and lemon slices and serve.
And, here's a version at Family Fun that is pretty similar.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

stick horses, floats, and other derby fun with kids! oh -and pendant WINNER

I will admit that I depend greatly on the schools for celebrating the Derby with my kids. They always have stick horse races, float parades, and other fun and games. I guess it's like a local holiday - the kids even get out of school the day before on Friday for the Oaks Race. Here are some ideas of fun my kids have had thanks to their teachers and schools (and a bit of help from mom)-

1 - Derby Floats and Parades. In kindergarten, my oldest boy, Trevor, and I worked on a Derby Float that would be walked around the school in a parade along with all the other kids. We took small squares of tissue paper and wrapped them around the tip of a pencil and glued all over a shoe box. The highlight was the glittered horse on top. Trevor is 11 now and we just said goodbye to that float last year because he loved it so much.

I don't have a photo of Black Nitro (although I did just put him away in the boy's room, but there is an example of one like him being carried by the boy behind my son)

2 - Stick Horse Races - Another great event the kids do at school and we have done at our church Derby Parties. It's as simple as making a horse head out of poster board (doubling it) and stuffing it lightly with newspaper. Then, staple it all the way around, putting a large dowel rod in the neck. The one my oldest (again) made in Kindergarten is still around and he named him Black Nitro. The younger siblings still ride around the house on him. Of course, when you have an entire school that has made these, then a great horse race ensues.

3 - The Hats! If you pop on over to The Polka Dot Chair, Melissa's friend, Ali, has posted a few ways to make Derby Hats with your kids. There is no such thing as a visit to the Derby without a hat. It's what hats were made for.

4 - Games - Kentucky Card Derby Game from Family Fun. I tore this out of their magazine at least eight years ago and it was a hit with my kids. Head over to their website here and follow the directions and rules.

We spend Derby Day one year with our friends, the Deshlers. They had a great way to get all of us cheering for certain horses in all the races throughout the day. Did you know there are many races on Derby Day and the Kentucky Derby is only one of the many and not even the last race of the day? Well, you can easily find out all the names of the horses in each of the races online. Print out their names and numbers and for each race, let everyone pick a name out of a bag or hat. You become enamored with that horse and it's amazing how a no name one minute becomes YOUR horse as your cheer them on. The winner gets to pick a candy bar out of a bag. My kids loved it and it is something that we have done ever since we learned it from our friends.

Okay, now for the winner of the giveaway from yesterday  - #6 Baby.Got.Craft

email me and send me your address and I will mail this little horse pendant to you ASAP. Thanks for all the kind comments and I love that there were so many horse lovers.  

Sunday, April 25, 2010

kentucky derby soldered pendant GIVEAWAY

To get this Derby Party started, I thought I would begin with a giveaway of one of my soldered pendants and silver ball chain necklaces. This pendant has a vintage images of a horses on both sides. It's a 1 inch x 1 inch square pendant and has a glass pearl bead dangling from the top jump ring. It's perfect to wear on Derby Day or classy enough to wear any day of the week knowing you got it from a Kentucky Girl - transplanted Kentucky Girl! I am making this giveaway really short and sweet so that I can get it to you ASAP.

So, you have until tonight (Monday, the 27th) at midnight EST to leave a comment. I will pick the winner Tuesday morning and hopefully have it in the mail to you that day or Wednesday. That means, you need to leave an email or a way for me to contact you and get your address with your comment. It makes it quick and easy that way.

Good luck and as they say in cheering on the horses in the Kentucky Derby, "Go Baby Go!"

Saturday, April 24, 2010

new business cards

I ordered business cards from Vistaprint and they did not turn out great. They cut off the turquoise border even though I re sized it several times so that it showed that it worked on their template. I was frustrated when I got them. So, in the mean time, I printed some out myself and tried to spiffy them up a bit by sewing them on a scrap of fabric. I think I like the result. Now, I just need to find somewhere else to do the printing before I use up all the ink on my computer. Any suggestions?

Friday, April 23, 2010

derby giveaway

Melissa at The Polka Dot Chair is getting the Derby Party started off a little early with a great giveaway. What a great addition to any Derby Party - Kentucky Derby Plates and a great napkin holder. Get over there and sign up because it's a quick one. She is picking the winner Sunday night so that she can get these to you on time to celebrate the Kentucky Derby on Saturday.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

warm california sun and a derby celebration

I just went to visit the family for a week in San Diego. I took my two youngest (the ones not in school yet) and it was a greatly needed week with family. I was able to meet my new nephew, spend time with my sisters, celebrate my mom's birthday and spend a day at Disneyland. My two children that were with me on the trip had never been, so they were extra giddy that day. Gage claims that Mallory had been before since the last time I went to Disneyland, I was pregnant with her. But, I don't think that counts. My sister made a jewelry holder that turned out awesome and she and my mom were suggesting ways you could add a piece of fabric on the bottom to hold your earrings. I'll have to get to work on that.

Right before I left to San Diego, I finished up a piece of jewelry for a local cause that was having a Derby Preview Party and auction.

I was also able to make a necklace for my mom's birthday along with a case for her glasses. I finished some custom pendants as well. I love doing those, so if you need one for Mother's Day, convo me or send me an email and we can work together.

Okay and now that I am back and rolling, here is an invitation to join me and Melissa of The Polka Dot Chair for our Derby Party. It starts next week and here's what you can enjoy -

- Giveaways (starting this Friday, April 23rd over at The Polka Dot Chair)

- Craft Ideas

- Recipes

- Party Ideas
This is a chance to show you what fun we have during the Derby Celebration that started last Saturday with Thunder Over Louisville - a large fireworks show. We have chow wagons along the river that are there for two weeks and lots of activities, parades, and entertainment. We just pick out a few of these to attend and usually have a little Derby party of our own. Lots of fun, so come and join in!

Friday, April 9, 2010

a few for the babies

I wasn't sewing much when I was having babies. Oh, I tried a few things here and there, but I didn't make them much. So, I get little joys from making just little things for little babes. Here are a few for some little ones that have arrived recently.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

tuesday tutorial over at the polka dot chair

I am filling in for Melissa over at The Polka Dot Chair today for her Tuesday Tutorial. It's for A Hanging Jewelry Organizer. Go over there and check it out.