Art & Baking

Chocolate Chip Delight - Blank Note Card
I have been cooking and baking a bunch lately. I don't usually enjoy cooking, but I know it's a lot easier to eat healthy when I'm making my own food. Pinterest has been really helpful for that. I love the crispy pizza from And this week, I tried both the Skinny Banana Oatmeal Cookies and Skinny Pepperoni Roll-ups from Mama Laughlin.

But then I went and prrrrobaby messed up the healthtasticness of my week by using my leftover bananas to make Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins.I got the recipe here, but I'm re-typing it on my blog, so I can pin the sad photo I took of my muffins. I know it's not much too look at, but they're really tasty!


1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large)
1 large egg
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line twelve 1/3-cup muffin cups with foil muffin liners. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Mix mashed bananas, egg, melted butter and milk in medium bowl. Stir banana mixture into dry ingredients just until blended (do not overmix). Stir in chocolate chips.
Divide batter among prepared muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 full. Bake muffins until tops are pale golden and tester inserted into center comes out with some melted chocolate attached but no crumbs, about 15 minutes. Transfer muffins to rack; cool.

Ingredient Notes:
1. I didn't have enough butter when I made these, so I chanced it with half and it worked out just fine.
2. I used Whole Wheat Flour and sometimes that can give a slightly unpleasant taste or texture to baked goods, but I didn't notice any at all. I think it's because of the bananas. 

Cooking Time Note: The original recipe said 32 minutes, but one commenter had noted that was way too long. I put them in for 15 and that was smack on the dot, but my oven tends to bake extra quickly, so it may be more like 17-20 minutes.

My other big thing this week was getting art ready for the Art in the Barn show. It was just a little local show, but it was fun and having it a barn was a different experience. They also had performance art going on throughout the night

Top Row: "God is Bigger", "Firefly Explorer", "Fairytale Princess";  Middle Row: "Out on a Limb",
"Night Light", "Starlit Nights"; Bottom Row: "Midwest Daydreams", "Summer Beauty"


Happy Birthday Card!

A number of people have suggested drawing a birthday card. This should be easy, because I've drawn a number of birthday cards for friends and family, but somehow I've never made it happen. Till now. Hopefully I'll have more occasion cards in the future.


New Cards

I've got some fun new pieces in my etsy shop, Most of them have appeared on this blog fairly recently. The cards don't always put in an appearance though. My Delighted blank card was drawn for a thank-you card. But I am always super frustrated by the cutest cards having "thank-you" scrawled across them. So I wanted my own to be more flexible. You could write about anything exciting and I'm pretty sure this card would convey that feeling.

I like similar flexibility on Christmas cards.  Christmas trees, angels, and nativity scenes have such a narrow window when they can be sent. That's all well and good if you're an organized correspondent. Alas, I am not. I might get cards out early, I might mail them out closer to Valentine's Day. Very few will go out during the appropriate Christmas season.

Most years I don't get cards out at all. But since I was, unintentially, on the ball and got this Happy Christmas card done this year. I will probably be sending them out to everyone I know.


Happy Birthday!

I know this looks like a winter scene. It's not. Or it wasn't.

One of my all time favorite books is The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield.  It's a booklover's book. Brilliantly written and full of gripping imagery. I read it over and over.

This is an illustration of Margaret Lea  towards the end of the book, during a birthday. I haven't drawn her as I really see her, except for the light brown hair and fringe. I know she must have light brown hair and a blunt fringe. But I've got her wearing a bright dress, mittens, & scarf, where I imagine her always in shades of gray and navy blue. But I love colors. So I colored her this way instead.

What book do you read again and again?