Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Spiced Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you like crispy cookies this is a great recipe. If you prefer soft/chewy cookies than just add in the cocoa powder and spices into your favorite chocolate chip recipe.

Ingredients:
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In large bowl, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, spices and salt; stir into the butter mixture until well blended. Mix in the chocolate chips. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or just until set. Cool slightly on the cookie sheets before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Art of the Tease

I've been enamored by, adored, inspired by and fascinated with burlesque for years. It's an art for that welcomes women of all shapes, sizes, ages and backgrounds. It's an art form. An expression of versus an exploitation of sexuality.

Now I'm not talking the Christina Aguilera and Cher movie (although fun, it wasn't true burlesque). I'm also not talking about envying or wishing I was Dita von Teese (although beautiful and a modern burlesque queen).

I'm talking old Hollywood glamour and vaudeville. Not Vegas style clubs where you go to see some woman take her clothes off but where the purpose was the tease and art of seduction.

There is a school of burlesque here and they have monthly sponsored classes and workshops. Earlier this month I (and my cousin Grace) attended one together. The fabulous Ms. Phoenix taught us not only the proper way to walk in heels (which has always been a pet peeve of mine - women walking like Clydesdale or linebackers) but also how to work on audience, connect and seduce with our eyes.

The class was only a few hours but it was just fabulous. Grace and I agree that we want to make it a standing monthly date for her and I to attend the workshops together.

It's also made my interest and passion for burlesque increase...however, there is some personality (work vs pleasure) conflicts and I'm doing what I can to find the balance between the two...because I want nothing more than to sign up for the next Burlesque 101 class that is being offered in only a few weeks.

It'd be a life changing opportunity. A chance to become more comfortable in my skin, to find live out a life fantasy of mine, to feel glamorous and seductive like the burlesque queens in history.

*sigh* I promise to share updates and news once this internal struggle has been settled...for now I leave you with this....


Friday, May 2, 2014

Spring Morning

I woke up early last weekend and couldn't resist going outside and capturing some of the beautiful nature that is right in my back yard. I took off my slippers and put on my flip flops, despite knowing the grass would be wet from the rain storm the night before, and stepped outside into the cold morning air. I hadn't bothered to change out of my pajamas even, I didn't want to risk the skies opening again or the morning sun to rise any further above the roofs.

Here are just a few pictures I took:

The roses haven't started blooming yet, but they are budding.

A small dogwood tree in the back shared yard.

I just love the dogwoods delicate blooms.