Monday, November 28, 2011

I Heart Children's Books

I love reading children's books. Sometimes when I'm reading to my 3 year old cousin or my 1 year old niece, I realize that they are on the other side of the room and have long ago lost interest in what I'm reading and moved on to something else. And yet I keep reading because I want to know the ending even if they don't. I'm a kid like that :P But according to this article on the Rabbit Room by Jennifer Trafton, (author of "The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic) it's perfectly ok to be childlike (not childish). It's a rather lengthy article but definitely worth your time. I hope you read it then go color, or read Moo Baa La La La, or play hide and go seek. :)

Child at heart,

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Best Birthday Ever!!

Every year on my birthday I always say that it's the best birthday ever. They just keep getting better...or maybe better is not the right word. But each year my awesome family finds a way to make the day extra special in some way or another. And this year was no exception. :) My birthday was Sunday, November 20, and while I was getting ready for church I heard the soundtrack from The Sound of Music coming from the dining room. My thought process went something like this, "What? Wait...I don't own that soundtrack....unless you count the record I have of it...but my record player has never worked because the stupid cartridges and needles are extinct.....wait a minute!". I then proceeded to run into the dining room to find my record player working just fine and Julie Andrews voice coming in loud and clear!!!!!! My brilliant mother had done some serious research and found the right cartridge and needle for it so now Skippy (that's what I named him) works beautifully :)
After church my Aunt, Uncle, cousin, and best friend came over to open more presents and eat dinner. I received a plethora of wonderful gifts, the majority of which had something to do with owls....owl measuring cups, owl recipe card box, owl ornaments, etc etc. I also got a couple of new records and a new hat that had nothing to do with owls.:)
Then it was time to eat! We had homemade fajitas, with homemade tortillas, homemade salsa, and...wait for it...homemade guacamole. YUM! We finished it off with the Laura Scott's famous chocolate cake and ice cream. It was the best birthday ever and it made me so thankful for such an awesome family!

Hope all you peeps in blog world had a fabulous Thanksgiving! Thanks for reading my blog. :)

The Owl Gal,

Friday, November 18, 2011

Venice Baby

A few years ago I worked as a counselor at an all girls camp in North Carolina. I taught cheerleading (don't laugh) and track (don't laugh). But that's beside the point. The point is, while I was there I met this super fun, creative, funny, crafty, girl and her two daughters. They did the arts and crafts class and we stayed up till 2 in the morning one night watching Pride and Prejudice and chatting it up about everything. Any-hoo, since then she has moved to the Nashville area and we go to the same church and my family has really clicked with her family and we've all become awesome friends. Did I mention she's SUPER talented?? She sews, she makes chandeliers,  she makes paper flowers, and bunny rabbit banners and I know not what! O and her lamp shades ARE SO CUUUUUTE! There is currently one in our living room. Long story short: She makes stupid cute stuff. And I think you should check out her blog and go buy something. She's got some ADORABLE stockings that would make super cute gifts or additions to your fireplace this Christmas.  Her name is Shulamith and her blogspot is called Venice Baby and you should go there right this second. Before you even finish reading this post.

Disclaimer: Shulamith did not ask me to post about her awesomeness. I just wanted to because I think she's awesome.

Happy Shopping,

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

It's the Little Things...

Ya know those seemingly insignificant things that make life more fun/beautiful/easy...?
Thanking God for these little things:

-Pretty cupcakes
-a clean windshield
-granny coffee mugs
-scraps and scraps of fabric
-Coming home from church on Sunday to a clean kitchen because I had gotten up 15 minutes earlier to clean it before we left
-Music in the car ( I sometime take this one for granted. It's just automatically on when I get in my car. But my friend's car got broken into and they stole her radio and I thought...O, I am so thankful for my car radio. Just sayin.)
-Duck ponds
-Andy Griffeth at lunch time
-Waking up to the smell of coffee
-Unexpected, fun, coincidentally matching, free, adorable, room decor. I am speaking of the most adorable magnetic shabby chic calendar ever. Thanks Laura! I squealed for hours about it.
-Even more amazingly coincidental matching paper that I already had that is perfect for writing events down for my calendar.
-Morning hugs from my family
-my fountain pen
-Stayin in my pajamas all day
-Leftovers at lunch time

Dizzy with gratitude,

p.s. I'll give a quarter to the person that tells me what the line "dizzy with gratitude" is from. :)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pumpkin Stupidness

I made these cupcakes for Ruth Anne's birthday party and they were a hit! (Everyone at church today loved them too) They were soooo moist and the cinnamon icing added a nice flavor to the pumpkin. They are actually more of a pumpkin bread consistency (dense/heavy) rather than a cake consistency (light/ fluffy). I found the original recipe from but I reduced the sugar and used a different icing so it is therefore now a JRae Stupid Good recipe. :) 

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream Icing
Cupcake Ingredients:
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin
  • 2/3 cup oil
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. each – ground cloves, nutmeg, and ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
Frosting Ingredients:
  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2- 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2tsp. vanilla (I like a strong vanilla taste so if you prefer 1 tsp that works too)
  • 1 Tbs. whipping cream (or more to make the icing the right consistency)

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line muffin pan with 24 cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, stir together pumpkin, oil, sugar, milk, and vanilla. Sift in the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices. Gently whisk by hand until just combined, don’t use an electric mixer or overmix the batter as it may become too gummy.
Fill liners with 1/4 cup batter (cups should be approximately 2/3 full). Bake for 22 to 24 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.Let the cupcakes cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Transfer the cupcakes to the wire rack and let cool completely before frosting.
To Make Icing:
In an electric mixer bowl beat your butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Add your powdered sugar gradually or you will choke on a cloud of powdered sugar. Gradually add the whipping cream until the icing is your desired consistency. Then beat on medium/high speed for 3-5 minutes. This makes your icing really fluffy and wonderful. Taste it and decide if you want more cinnamon or anything else before frosting your cupcakes. :)

ENJOY!!!! These are SO STUPID!

Happy Eating,

Thursday, November 3, 2011


The Pioneer Woman posted this on the Home and Garden section of her site today. They are the most adorable owl pillows ever seen on the face of the planet. I kept shouting "O MY WORD!" as I scrolled through all the pictures. The sad can't buy them because someone just made them for her out of the goodness of her heart.....and she doesn't sell them. Sigh. But you should go look at them..SO STUPID CUTE!!!! If you know how to sew, and were planning on getting me a birthday present, feel free.

I realize this post is polar opposite of my post earlier today. I'm a yo-yo. What can I say?

-Owl Obsessed,

Confessions of an UN-perfect Christian

My name is Jessie Rae and I am a selfish human being. As of late I've been stuck in my own little bubble and in His grace, God has used the people closest to me to burst my bubble and open my eyes to the fact that there is more to this world than my own little world. Christ has not been the center of my little world and because of that things have been threatening to unravel, relationships in particular. My selfishness has hurt people and caused deep wounds that the love of Christ and time can only heal. I've been willingly blind to this particular heart issue for a while now and last night in a conversation with a very dear friend, God opened my eyes and I was broken. But God didn't leave it at that. He also used this friend to preach Christ to me. So, this morning I woke up and went to Christ, thankful for his selflessness that He lived out so perfectly, thankful that He continues to put up with me, and overwhelmed by His faithfulness I was eager to read His word and spend time with Him in prayer, rather than read and pray out of a sense of duty or out of the guilt.
I'm not blogging about this to show you how together I have it. I'm blogging it to stay open, to share my struggles because I know I'm not the only one who struggles...even though sometimes it does feel that way. And I want this blog to point to Christ. Isn't it ironic that I'm writing about *selfishness* on a blog about *me*?
Anyway, to my Brothers and Sisters in Christ, go to Christ today with your struggles and look to Him alone.

Growing in Grace,

PS. I enjoyed this blog post from my friend Amy.