Wednesday, February 29, 2012

yellow shoes

She wears yellow shoes to add a little ray of sunshine in her step.

Happy Leap Day!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

dunkin for doughnuts!

Best served with a side of hot chocolate (or another morning beverage of your choice). Be sure to bring along a napkin or two to wipe off those sticky fingers! 

2 quarts canola oil
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 cups sour cream
1 1/4 cups cake flour, not self rising
3/4 granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
1 packet active dry yeast, or .6 ounces cake yeast
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons nonfat buttermilk
1 extra-large whole egg
2 extra-large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups non-melting or confectioners' sugar

1. Heat oil in a low-sided six-quart saucepan over medium-high heat until a deep-frying thermometer registers 375 degrees. Lightly dust a baking pan with all-purpose flour, and line a second one with paper towels; set both aside. 
2. Meanwhile, place sour cream in a heat-proof bowl on top of a double boiler; set over a pan of simmering water. Heat until warm to the touch. Remove from heat; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, sift together all purpose flour, cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. Make a large well; place yeast in center. Pour warm sour cream over yeast, and let sit 1 minute. 
4. Place buttermilk, whole egg, egg yolks, and vanilla in a medium bowl; whisk to combine. Pour egg mixture over sour cream. Using a wooden spoon, gradually draw flour mixture into egg mixture, stirring until before drawing in more flour. Continue until all flour mixture has been incorporated; dough will be very sticky.
5. Sift a heavy coat of flour into a clean work surface. Turn out dough. Sift another heavy layer of flour over dough. Using your hands, pat dough until it is 1/2 inch thick. Using a 2 3/4 inch doughnut cutter, cut out doughnuts as close together as possible, dipping the cutter in flour before each cut. Transfer doughnuts to floured pan, and let rest 10 minutes, but not more. 
6. Carefully transfer four doughnuts to hot oil. Cook until golden, about 2 minutes. Turn over; continue cooking until evenly browned on both sides, about 2 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, transfer doughnuts to lined pan. Repeat with remaining doughnuts.
7. Gather remaining dough scraps into a ball. Let rest 10 minutes; pat into a 1/2 inch thick rectangle. Cut, let rest 10 minutes, and cook.
8. When cool enough to handle, sift non-melting sugar over tops; serve immediately. 

Enjoy your morning treat, Toodles!

New Project!

Come join me on my latest adventure!

Beginning yesterday, I am a weekly contributor to Venue Lifestyle & Event Guide. The Cincinnati based magazine comes out seasonally featuring all different aspects of the greater Cincinnati area. In between publication dates, Venue updates their website...where I am a featured writer.
My weekly write-ups will be on nonprofits and philanthropies in the Cincinnati area. 
My posts will be updated every Monday on Venue's Website under the blog category. 

My first blog is on the Linder Center of HOPE's Leap for HOPE philanthropy event. Read HERE.

I am ecstatic about the new job and I hope all of you will support my new project and continue to keep up with all of the Twirling Clare pages:

Help me reach 300 followers on all of the above sites!
When you become follower, you get to celebrate inspirations in even more ways!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Oscar Loving!

Do you have any plans for the Glamorous Weekend? Even if you won't be in attendance for the Academy Awards, I hope you roll out your own red carpet and strike a pose! 
Always remember, you're a celebrity in someone's eyes.

If I were accepting the Oscar for the Best Actress of the Year, I would be wooing the crowd in this outfit, bringing a little Twirling Clare to Hollywood couture:

Red Carpet

Shop the look:

Check out other Red Carpet worth outfits on {long distance loving} and Happy Weekend!!


Thursday, February 23, 2012

How to: Stay Active This Winter

Stay Active This Winter!
Article submitted by Christina Johnson

When the winter winds roll around and you are stuck indoors, it is too easy to start giving the gym a miss. The cold encourages us to be less than active, but the truth of the matter is that there are plenty of ways to stay on your toes no matter how cold it gets outside. Even if you have kids and a busy schedule, think about a few fun ways to stay active this winter.

First, start dancing! When people think about dance, they often think about things like ballet and tap. The truth of the matter is that there is no right way to dance. Think about the last time you heard a song that you loved on the radio and think about how your foot started tapping and how you started to move. All dancing is making the most of the motions. If you feel embarrassed, do it alone, or better yet, get your kids in on it with you.

Bundle up and head outside.  While it feels like a pain to get your coat and boots and gloves on for a walk, you’ll be happy that you did. Getting some sunlight on your eyes immediately improves your mood, and you’ll find that just getting to stretch your legs can help you feel better. Plus, you’ll burn more calories in the cold than you will in the warm areas, so even a short walk can make a big difference to the way that you feel.

Go sledding. If you have kids, this is a great way to stay active and at little cost. If you have a sled, or even a large plastic trash can lid, you’ll find that this can help your kids have their own fun. This gets them and you out of the house, and you can bet that you are burning plenty of calories as you march up that hill over and over again.

Remember that not all exercise has to be intense and aerobic. Check online for free yoga instructional videos. Yoga allows you to stretch your body and to subtly strengthen it, and you’ll find that it is a great way for you to get more flexibility into your day-to-day routine. This is a fantastic thing to do with kids, as you can help them keep their natural flexibility. Online videos in general are a great resource for people who want to stay fit while indoors; they can teach you to do yoga, to stretch and to dance!

Remember that winter is not something that you can hibernate through. Take the time to consider how you are going to stay active this winter and how you can get your kids in on the act.

Christina Johnson who works remotely for Elliman Prudential in the NYC Apartments and Rentals market.  She is using her journalism major to combine what she loves most, writing and her career. Her specialties include home decor design and DIY home improvement projects.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mardi Gras King Cake

Happy Fat Tuesday! Enjoy this delicious holiday treat.

1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 (16 oz) container sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 (1/4 oz) envelopes active dry yeast
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 cup warm water (~100-110 degrees)
2 eggs
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (divided)
1/2  cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup better or margarine (softened)

Colored Frostings:
3 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons butter (melted) 
3 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 drops green food coloring
2 drops yellow food coloring
2 drops blue food coloring
2 drops red food coloring

Colored Sugars:
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 drops green food coloring
2 drops yellow food coloring 
2 drops red food coloring 
2 drops blue food coloring

1. Cook butter/margarine, sour cream, sugar and salt in a saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts. Cool mixture to ~100-110 degrees.
2. Dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1/2 cup warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 min. Add butter mixture, eggs, and two cups flower; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes or until smooth. Gradually stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. 
3. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (~85 degrees), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in bulk. 
6. Stir together 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon; set aside
7. Punch dough down; divide in half. Turn 1 portion out onto a lightly floured surface; roll to a 28 x 10 in. rectangle. Spread half each of cinnamon mixture and soften butter on dough. roll dough, jellyroll fashion, starting at long side. Place dough roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bring ends together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching ends together to seal. Repeat with remaining dough, cinnamon mixture, and butter. 
8. Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 20 minutes (or until doubled in bulk). 
9. Bake a 375 degrees for 15 minutes (or until golden). Decorate with bands of colored frostings and sprinkle with colored sugars. 
Colored Frostings:
Stir together powdered sugar and melted butter. Add milk to reach desired consistency for drizzling; stir in vanilla. Divide frosting into 3 batches, tinting 1 green, 1 yellow, and combining red and blue food coloring for purple frosting. 
Colored Sugars:
Place 1/2 cup sugar and drop of green food coloring in a jar or zip-top plastic bag; seal. Shake vigorously to evenly mix color with sugar. Repeat procedure with 1/2 cup sugar and yellow food coloring. For purple, combine 1 drop red and one drop blue food coloring before adding to remaining 1/2 cup sugar. 

Wishing you the most wonderful of Mardi Gras!! Toodles!

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Night of Twirl

Saturday night's party was a wonderful success filled with dancing, drinks, and dress-up!
I am blessed to have so many wonderful friends celebrate with me. 
It was definitely a night to remember!
Here are some shots from throughout the night:

Photos courtesy of two friends from school!

Dancing Playlist:

One More Time Daft Punk
Super Bass Niki Minaj
Teenage Dream Katy Perry
You're the One That I Want Grease
ABC Jackson 5
September Earth, Wind, and Fire
I Gotta Feeling Black Eyed Peas
Dynamite Taio Cruz
I Wanna Dance with Somebody Whitney Houston
We Found Love Rihanna (feat. Calvin Harris)
Jessie's Girl Rick Springfield
Forever Chris Brown
Party Rock Anthem LMFAO
Oh What A Night Frankie Vallie & the Four Seasons
Firework Katy Perry
I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) The Proclaimers
Stacy's Mom Fountains of Wayne
Brown Eyed Girl Van Morrison
Without You David Guetta (feat. Usher)
Only Girl (In the World) Rihanna
American Girl Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
Dancing Queen ABBA
We Didn't Start the Fire Billy Joel
Don't Stop Believing (Glee Cast Version)
Give Me Everything Pit Bull
Levels Avicii
Memories David Guetta feat. Kid Cudi
Only the Good Die Young Billy Joel
We Are Family Sister Sledge
Dancing in the Dark Bruce Springsteen
Come on Eileen Dexy's Midnight Runners
Just Dance Lady Gaga
I Will Survive Gloria Gaynor
Just the Way You Are Bruno Mars
Footloose Kenny Loggins
Dancing in the Moonlight Toploader
YMCA Village People
Ain't No Mountain High Enough Marvin Gaye
Uptown Girl Billy Joel
Twist & Shout The Beatles

Friday, February 17, 2012

Birthday party outfit

This is the outfit I will be sporting to celebrate my birthday party tomorrow evening with my friends!

Kate Spade dress with a black sash, to separate the colorful and metallic print! I wanted to keep the black color scheme for the footwear as well, the patent with add a little shine to complement the shimmer on the dress. Finally, since you know I love color, I will be adding a turquoise necklace to the outfit. Turquoise and pink are two of my favorite colors together and I think it will make for a fabulous outfit!

Thank you to all of my lovely followers and Twirling Clare fans. I love keeping up with the blog and I hope I inspire you, at least a little, to live life to the fullest and appreciate all of the little things!

Wishing you the happiest of weekends, Toodles!

Check out {long distance loving} for more Friday's Fancies outfits. 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Birthday excitement!

It's my Twenty-first birthday today!! Crazy, right?? 
I had a wonderful evening celebrating with close friends (and a fellow birthday twin turning 22) last night and had my first legal drink at the bar! Prior to the bar adventure we dined on beautiful birthday cake and champagne, it was wonderful! And I am so grateful for my friends being there with me throughout the evening!

This afternoon I am celebrating by going to an Art Gallery Opening at the Museum in town. I am taking a Managing Non-profit Arts Organizations class and as part of the course, we had to volunteer at a nonprofit for "lab" experience. I chose to work at the Art Museum and spent last week helping to set up the show. My teacher decided that instead of having class this morning, we would have our meeting time rescheduled and relocated to the Art Museum between 4-6 for the Gallery Opening. It should be a perfect birthday afternoon.

This weekend, I am throwing a birthday party with my closest friends, which happens to be 200 people... We are having a party at a restaurant in the town. I am super super excited!! Some of my friends who have graduated are coming back to celebrate for the weekend. It will be good music, good drinks, and fabulous company. Such a perfect way to celebrate a milestone year!

Most importantly, my parents and younger brothers will be coming up on Friday to take me out for dinner. It has been a month since I have seen them and I can't wait for their visit!

Sending you lots of celebratory vibes!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Heart's Day

Happy Happy Valentine's Day!

Wishing you all the most wonderful of days!! 

Watch the video HERE

Monday, February 13, 2012

Red and Pink

How about?

Drinking a red cream soda with a bright pink straw. 
Carrying a red tote bag with a pink silk scarf tied on the handle.
Ordering strawberry ice cream for dessert, with a cherry on top. 

Also...LOVING these decorative chocolate covered strawberries!

Easy to do:
Clean strawberries
Melt chocolate on low heat on the stove (I recommend semi-sweet chocolate chips)
Dip strawberries in the chocolate sauce

For sprinkle decorations, set up different bowls of sprinkles. Roll the chocolate covered strawberries around to cover with as many sprinkles as you'd like. 
For chocolate drizzle, melt the chocolate in the same fashion. Take a small utensil with which you can dip into the chocolate sauce. Drizzle the chocolate over the strawberries. 

Place on a cookie sheet and refrigerate.
All set to eat and enjoy :) 
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