Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Let’s BlogOff - Cookies!

It’s time for Let’s BlogOff – Cookies!

Is there anything better with glass of cold milk than a couple of warm ooey-gooey chocolate chip cookies? Mmmmmm! I can still remember the cornflake chocolate chip cookies my mom made when I was a kid. The cornflakes gave the cookies a great texture – a little crunchy, a little chewy – and a whole lot of chocolatey goodness :-) If you’ve never had cornflake chocolate chip cookies, here’s a link to a recipe that I think is similar to my mom’s.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
The absolute best part about making chocolate chip cookies – the cookie dough! YUM!
Image via Kaitlin With Honey

As much as I loved those cookies, I found another recipe that I love even more. I have no idea where it came from – I wrote it out on a yellow sticky note, just the list of ingredients and the baking time & temperature. I’ve made a few changes to the ingredients & quantities, and now they’re the perfect thin & chewy & buttery & sweet & super-chocolatey cookies. Get out your measuring cups & spoons and whip up a batch right now – you won’t regret it! I know everyone says that their chocolate chip cookies are the best. But you can forget about all those other alleged best cookies, because these ones really ARE the best! Although my friend Paul at Kitchen & Residential Design says that his Ultimate Shortbread Cookies are the best. Guess you’ll just have to try out both and see whose cookies are REALLY the best! ;-)

Triple-Threat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Image via labregeo91


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp. milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • 2 cups oats
  • 2 cups (or more) combination of chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, and Skor bits


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or spray with Pam.
  3. Combine butter, brown sugar, and white sugar in a large bowl with a wooden spoon or in your KitchenAid mixer.
  4. Add eggs, milk, and vanilla and stir until just combined.
  5. In a medium sized bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to butter & sugar mixture and stir until just combined.
  6. Add oats and stir until combined.
  7. Add chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, and Skor bits and stir until combined. (If you’re using a KitchenAid, you’ll probably have to stir the chips in by hand, because the cookie dough is pretty thick.)
  8. Use a dessert spoon to drop cookie dough onto cookie sheets. Leave about 2” between each cookie (cookie dough will spread).
  9. Put one sheet onto middle rack in oven and bake for about 5 minutes.
  10. After 5 minutes, turn the sheet 180 degrees and place on upper rack. Put second sheet of cookies onto middle rack and bake both sheets for about 5 minutes (about 10 minutes total cooking time for each sheet). Cookies on top rack are ready when the edges are just barely brown and the center looks slightly unbaked.
  11. Remove top sheet from oven, turn other sheet 180 degrees and place on upper rack. Continue this rotation until all cookies are baked.
  12. Let cookies cool on sheet for a few minutes, then carefully remove cookies with spatula and let cool completely on a wire rack.

Makes about 50 cookies, unless you’re a cookie dough fiend like me and eat a few cookie’s worth of dough before all the cookies are baked :-)

Be sure to visit all the other Let’s BlogOff – Cookies participants and see what they have to say about cookies.

And today over at my other blog DTTD imagine.design.create, I’m participating in the It’s a Cinch blog party. I’m sharing an easy-to-make Maritime map letter project. Come on by and check it out :-)

sig turquoise

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Keep Merry and Bake Cookies

I haven’t been intentionally ignoring my JAX does design blog, honest! I’ve just been busy working on the new DTTD imagine.design.create blog that I’m writing with my friend Victoria. If you haven’t been by yet, what’s keeping you?! I had originally planned to close down JAX once we started up DTTD, but I’m still kind of attached to this blog. Plus the focus at DTTD is all about home decor inspiration, whereas here at JAX I can write abut whatever I want because, well, it’s my blog and I can! :-)

So, next Tuesday I’ll be participating in Let’s BlogOff – Cookies and sharing my uber-yummy Triple Threat Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe right here. You won’t want to miss it, ‘cause trust me, the cookies are DEE-LISH!

And also on Tuesday, over at DTTD I’ll be participating in the It’s a Cinch blog party. It’s all about easy-peasy, quick-to-make DIY projects. I haven’t actually started my project yet, but it’s supposed to be easy-peasy and quick-to-make, so how long can it take? {Answer: Potentially VERY long!} So after you check out my cookie recipe here on Tuesday, head over to DTTD to see my It’s a Cinch project. And trust me, it’s something easy and fast to do. Not like the other DIY project I’m working on that just about maimed my thumb last weekend.

And now here’s something cool for you to check out – animal art by Jason LaFerrera.

animal art 2 animal art 1

Pretty, yes? And you’d never guess how he creates these pieces of art… with old maps!

bear vacardinal2

How cool is that!? John sells his amazing animal map art through his Etsy shop.

See you on Tuesday!

sig turquoise

Monday, March 5, 2012

Ocean-inspired gallery wall reveal

tiles close 2 A few months ago, I wrote this blog post about wanting to create an ocean-inspired gallery wall. And WOOT! It’s finally done. Another item knocked off the 2012 project to-do list – YAY! I’ll post a tutorial later this week about how I put it all together, but for today it’s just the reveal.

This is the long empty wall in the hallway that I walk by countless times a day. It’s so plain and dull and boring and naked – it was just screaming out for a little somethin’-somethin’.

blank wall

So a little somethin’-somethin’ it got with a collection of photos, prints, DIY art, and a mosaic tile. The hallway gets very little natural light and it’s too narrow to take a decent head-on shot, so they’re not the best pictures.

done 2a

done 1a

done 3

done 4

I  my gallery wall! But I knew I’d love it even more if it was dark grey. This is the picture at Restyling Home by Kelly that convinced me that the colour I needed was Benjamin Moore Chelsea Gray in the ulti-matte finish (that last part I decided myself).

inapiration colour

And I was right – I my gallery wall even more now that it’s Chelsea Gray :-)


done 1

Thank god for digital cameras – it took a LOT of tries to get this head-on shot!

CG head on PN

All of the frames are from the Ribba series at Ikea, and all the artwork was created by me or talented artisans from around the world. I posted about creating this DIY shell art a couple of weeks ago:

shell art

This is a picture that I took on the north shore of PEI that was made into a canvas by Posterjack.ca.


I took this picture at Brackley Beach in PEI – $3.00 to have it developed as a 12” x 18” photo at Costco, can’t go wrong with that!

pei stones 2

Hubby and I bought these two prints on a trip to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia about 13 years ago.

cape breton 1

cape breton 2

Close-up of waves behind the whale-watching boat we rode on in the Bay of Fundy two summers ago {the one and only time I ever barfed on a boat – oh, the humiliation!}

fundy waves

This photo is called “Dancing Light”. I bought it from Anna’s Etsy shop my little pixels in Hobart, Tasmania.

pixels etsy

A few more Etsy purchases – the Nova Scotia Love print is from Elizabeth’s shop Poppy and Pinecone, and the sand dollar print is from Kerrie’s shop Seawashed.

ns map and sand dollar

Laura Trevey’s blue crab from her shop Bright, Bold, and Beautiful.

laura trevey

Last year when parts of Australia were hit with severe flooding, Kerri at Driftwood Interiors decided to donate proceeds from her Etsy shop sales to help the flood victims. It was the perfect time to buy her turquoise coral print that I’d had my eye on.

kerri driftwood interiors

I had this glass tile mosaic custom made years ago. I can’t for the life of my remember who made it, just that her name was Michelle and I found her on the Internet.

glass mosaic

I bought a set of six fish note cards two summers ago at The Maritime Painted Saltbox in Petite Riviere, Nova Scotia. I love the bright colours they add to the mostly-blue palette.

petite riviere fish

And this piece I bought at a craft show here in Ottawa last year. I’d admired these tile pieces made by Marie-Joel at L’atelier Trema at previous shows, and this one caught my eye with it’s watery colours.


This tile says it all…

tiles close“The family to the sea”

I’m telling you, writing a yearly project to-do list really helps to get your butt in gear!

done 2

CG done 1

Have you created a gallery wall in your home?

kelly sig

A little kindness goes a long way: Extreme Makeover reveal

This is my second year participating in Extreme Makeover: Kindness Edition. I worked with a group of decorators to make over a space for a charitable organization here in Ottawa as part of Kindness Week. This year’s makeover recipient was the Foster Farm Family House Homework Club. Here we are on the install day… see how hard decorators work? :-)

The EMKE Team!

kelly sonya donna mary anne maureen nicole sarah  
Kelly, JAX Decor & Design | Sonya, Sonya Kinkade Design | Donna, dh designs | Mary Anne, Otta Decorate!
Maureen, Modecor | Nicole, Solace Interiors | Sarah, Sarah Kidder Design | {Lisa from Lisa Goulet Design was a late arrival}

Here are the befores {all photography by Danielle Lynn Photography}

And the awesome afters!

homework room 1

blackboard wall

desk kj

homework room 2

letter art

computer room 3

ikea chairs

computer room 2

pencil crayons


cabinet supplies


The EMKE design team on reveal day {with Lisa this time}



Thanks to everyone who donated their time, skills, money, labour, and products – you all helped to make The Homework Club a beautiful and inspiring environment for the kids who do their homework there. Please check out Sonya’s post about Extreme Makeover for the complete list of donors. Sonya forgot to include Posterjack.ca, so I’m sending out a big THANK YOU to Tim and his team :-)

kelly sig