Category Archives: i cook

hello yellow…


i love yellow.  because brooke went through a “yellow” stage when she was little.  she had to wear these yellow jeans every day.  she sees them in photos now and asks why i would dress her like that.  um, hello.  yellow.  your choice.

and she used to sing…  you are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy, when skies are GREG (after her dad) to mason when he was a baby.

so, you ask why i like yellow?

memories of her childhood.  the sun.  it’s a happy color.  just that.

sign available on

december17artists i like book

what a great book.  i want it.


i ate lemon pudding cake throughout my whole pregnancy with mason.  even named it “pregnant with mason lemon dessert”

(it’s in my cookbook.  and yes, I have a bout 20 left in stock if anyone needs a Christmas gift.  just email me)

note to self:  make that dessert soon. very soon.

or go to the store and buy lemon gelato.

can make your own if you like.  sounds kind of easy.

thanks for the recipe


i’m smiling just looking at these.

must buy at

fyi… that’s a website i will be spending money on next year.  love the home stuff.


i know i might possibly be the most unorganized person in my home.

hey, you try working out of your home.  easiest to just have one messy place that only i know where things are.  and that is my studio/office in a nutshell.

but i’m good when it comes to organizing for others.  and that makes me happy.  so i might need this.

note to future bosses… i am very organized in the work place!  just wanted to let you know.


love love love.

and it’s from my favorite shop in my favorite town in the world.

thanks tuvalu in laguna beach, ca.

coming to see you next month…


well, it’s raining outside.  again.  like every other day this week.

that’s washington state for you.

maybe i should have put this on my Christmas list.

thanks for making the rain fun


well, i have 10 hours to decorate our home for broooke’s arrival.

gotta get making the popcorn cake i posted about yesterday.

happy thursday.


I can’t wait for our mother/daughter Christmas moment…

brookie comes home in 9 days.


i want to decorate her room.

i always put twinkle lights in my kids rooms.  have since they were little.  it’s a sign of the holidays.

thanks for the idea


and bake her a cake.

our family loves cake.  a lot.  it’s our thing.

thanks for the yummy photo

she has requested “time with mom” and “good food”.

i can do that.

and i can’t wait.

i need those things too.

happy tuesday.


did someone ask me to help plan a PINK party…

december6 happy art

a party?  ok.  a PINK party?  heck ya!!

my aunt called me and asked if i’d help her plan a party for my cousin’s youngest daughter.  her name is Annika.  we call her anni.  she has a heart like no other.  she’s a lover of God.  she’s a friend to many.  she always puts family first.  she loves deeply.  she hugs large.  she would do anything for the ones she loves…. and probably for most strangers if asked.

anni lost her mom a few years ago.  over night.  shocked everyone.  and truthfully i believe it’s what made our empire of women in the family who we are today.  we all do for each other.  anni is the one who grieves openly.  she puts it out on social media.  she talks about her mom all of the time.  I love it.  she’s doing great.  she’s a senior in college.  she’s smart and beautiful (inside and out).  she has a smile and a laugh that draws you in.  so, it was so much fun to hear we are planning a party for her.  cousin Chrissy will be smiling down on us the whole time.  she is so proud of her kids. all 4 of them.  but Annika is the one that actually asked her grammie (my aunt) if we could gather the girls and celebrate her day.  and don’t worry, we will make everything happy and pink.  just the way anni will love it.

december6 pink nails

it was a no brainer that i said YES to help being a party planner.  i was just supposed to plan the pedicure appointments.  that seemed easy enough.  one phone call.  done.  but that’s not my style.

suddenly i find myself out today looking for pink things.  it was so much fun.  i had forgotten how much i like pink!  i think we all need to get our pedicures in various shades of pink.

december6 pink converse

if i had a pair of these i swear i would wear them.  i love them.  pink converse.  yes, please.  hint hint for Christmas to my family perhaps?

december6 pinkflipflopsoldnavy

i think we should get these for everyone attending the party.  cheap.  cute.  who doesn’t need flip flops?

december6 pinkblankety

and if we were wearing flip flops, Annika would be so cold.  she would need a pink furry soft princess blanket to cuddle up in.  after all, the day time pedicure has now turned into a sleepover.

december6 pajamas

i might just have to splurge and get these jammies.  ok, tracy.  this party is not for you.  maybe i’ll get anni the jammies.  everyone likes to receive a victorias secret pink bag.

december6 pink solos cup

how cute are these cups?  pink solo cups.  add white dots.  the kind you buy at the office supply store for your yearly garage sale.  i probably have a few thousand of them somewhere in our garage or our kitchen junk drawer.  just have to find the cups.

www,  this will find solo cups in all colors.  i love google. and i love crafting.

december6 pinkcakeplate

and i love this cake plate.  but that would be for me.  one day.  when i can convince my husband that pink looks great in a kitchen.  i mean, who would even notice.  everything is mismatched around here anyway.

december6 pinkicecreammaker

can you imagine if i bought this and brought it.  haha.  wishful thinking.  but my oh my i want this for my little cottage on the water some day.  some day, pretty please?

december6 pinkricekrispie

hello yum.

december6 pinkrecord

we could play music all night long.  we have old records at our family beach place.  frank Sinatra.  sugar hill gang.  good classics.  actually, brooke has asked for one of these for the past two years.  hmmmm.  possible gift?

december6 unicorn  head

can you imagine if i bought this for Annika?  she would probably hang it above her dorm room bed.  i love it.  now i want a pink room.  can i just please have a pink closet?  with a pink velvet chair?  and a pink unicorn head?

december6 pencils

i need to start thinking of gifts.  these are $12 on etsy.  or if you go to oriental trading you can order them with your own sayings, or personalize with a name.  or


i’m done.

i’m pinked out.

i can hardly wait for the party.

i’ll take one of everything above.  please AND thank you.

happy monday.


i’m dreaming of a fisher Christmas…


‘dreaming’ is the key word here.

a fisher Christmas consists of whatever i happen to do to make it festive at the time.

each year it is different.

one year we had a hula hoop tree with lights hanging from the ceiling (thought it was a good idea at the time… should have just bought a tree).

most years we have fresh cut trees. we buy from our friends tree lot.  i like to support local families.  and to be honest with you, i feel sorry for the trees that are already cut down.  they need a home.  i don’t like to think of the ones that don’t get chosen by a family.  makes me sad.  every tree deserves a happy home.

last year someone gave us a fake tree they didn’t want anymore.  apparently they wanted a bigger one.  well, we live in a ranch style home.  not much room for a huge tree.  so we said yes, thank you.  yep, that’s the one we are using this year.

but i thought i’d do a little dreaming… just for fun… of what i’d like to see in my home one day.

just one Christmas morning i’d like to wake up with a decorated kitchen… instead of dishes in the sink from the casserole i insisted on making at midnight on Christmas eve after wrapping all of the presents.

thanks for the idea


i’ve always wanted a deer head, or big blue marlin, on my mantel.

i think it’s cool.

no animal would be hurt in making it though.

thanks for the idea


just once i’d like to make cookies that looked like these.  and tasted delicious.

thanks for the idea


but I know i could make these.  it appears all i have to do is go to the store and buy oreos, candy canes and white chocolate.

I could so handle that project.

thanks for the recipe


and why can’t my gifts look like this?

although i do have to admit, i buy really cute wrapping paper.  but then neglect the ribbon because a) it’s so expensive and b) it’s usually past midnight on Christmas eve when i am wrapping.  so what’s the point?  unless you are photographing your home for a magazine.  and that probably won’t be happening here this year.  haha

thanks for the pretty gift ideas  and


i know this is random.  and i’m not really sure what i would do with it.  but i think this garland of pom pom’s are so much fun.  they remind me of when i was a kid.  we actually put tinsel on our tree.  along with strung popcorn.  that we did ourselves.  and pricked our fingers on the needles.  and actually popped our own popcorn.  the microwave was not invented yet.  i loved our family trees.  we all had our own ornaments as kids.  we loved opening that box every year.  well, at least i did.

thanks for the fun idea


i want. i want. i want.

a big fireplace like my grandpa and grandma had.

and someone to come over and hang something fabulous like this.

thanks for the dream



oh ya.

peppermint cheesecake cake.

need i say more?

thanks for the photo and recipe

now, can someone make this for me and bring it over.  with a bottle of champagne.


any way you look at Christmas, it’s truly a time of giving thanks to God.  and remembering those you love.  and loving those you are with.  and finding meaning in the simple things.

happy thursday.


the 2015 thanksgiving torch has been passed to us…

are you ready, dolly???

i just found out last night that my aunt and mom have passed the torch to the next generation.

how come i suddenly fell like i am 15 and can’t live up to their expectations.  they are the ultimate hostesses with the mostess.  they have flair.  and don’t sweat.  and don’t get grumpy.  and for some reason can get an entire dinner onto the buffet at the same time and nothing is cold.  how do they do that?

hmmm.  not sure it’s fair.

there are only 2 of us girls.  and our 3 daughters.

the rest are all boys (men).

and let’s be honest, the men are not quite ready yet to make a feast of anything other that dip and chips, salsa and chips, yep… anything with chips.  and maybe a little spray cheese on crackers (by the way, my kids introduced me to that stuff recently… yum.  seriously.)

hey, maybe they could do the dishes.  YES!

it’s up to us, dolly and girls.

we can do it.

and here are a few ideas…


if it were up to me, i’d decorate the table in all white and shades of tan.  gorgeous.  thank goodness it’s not at my house this year.  i’d have a hard enough time finding 15 plates that weren’t chipped or had some foreign spot on them.  and forget about silverware.  it wouldn’t match at all.  thank goodness my aunt is hosting.  in her wonderful home in so cali.  she has everything.

thanks for the idea


i would love to put something like this on the table.  i’m curious what each generation would say.

thanks for the idea


how awesome is this table.  i mean really, would we even need nice plates and utensils?  they are already drawn in.  i think you could use fancy disposable chinette and those silver throw away cutlery… and plastic cups.  you know the kind… with the fake crystal details.  oh, so my kind of table.  why?  do you need to ask?  no dishes to wash!!  but then what would our kids do?

thanks for the idea


and there is pink.  i just love pink.  it makes me happy.  not sure we could pull this off for thanksgiving… but hey, Christmas is right around the corner.  hot pink and lime green.   yep.  that’s it.  ok, who am i kidding.  we will be eating in front of the tv, watching football and holiday shows, on our chipped plates i talked about earlier.

thanks for the idea for my own personal Christmas table

november23feast mode teenovember23fatpants

can you imagine if dolly and i wore these tee’s as we were cooking?  with waist aprons on?  i wonder if i could get them overnighted to us.  really tracy?  don’t you have 8 santa paintings to finish tonight?  how about next year?

love all of your tees

november23 tobin james winenovember23 tobin james winenovember23 tobin james winenovember23 tobin james winenovember23 tobin james wine

there will be wine.  i do know that for sure.  there always is.  the best part?  the two grandpas have wine cellars.  and their taste in wine is so much better than mine.  my palate is that of a 1987 Washington Statue University college grad.  $10 bottles of wine are fine with me.  to be honest with you i usually choose my wine for the label.  the label tells the story.  but if you have a chance, join us in giving thanks with a bottle of Tobin James.  it’s always poured at our table on this special day.  for some reason it became tradition.  we even named our appetizer in the form of a turkey “tobin the turkey”… then ate him.

must needed site for favorites if you drink wine

november23 table topics

i love this game.  hoping to find it on our drive  up the coast wednesday.  best questions ever.  and it beats hours of football!

thanks to my fav site for quick ordering and shipping


just a few more days.

this year i am so very grateful.

as we will be missing a few very important family members who are smiling down from heaven, and a few who could not join us, and to the new baby born into our other side of the family, we raise a toast to family and love.

happy monday.


the sweeter side of lemons…

november19lemon cookie

i love lemon.  lemon anything.

sweet lemon cakes, cookies and bars.  savory lemon chicken and fish.

lemon in my sun tea.

lemon in my hair (okay, that was when i was in college.  no more of that.).

i found this yummy site.

and i think she has the same passion for lemon (and food in general) as i do.

go take a peek at her blog.  you will love it.  she’s brilliant.  and you can get the recipe for the photo above on her site.


in honor of “i love lemon” day (self proclaimed, just saying it needed a day of it’s own), i’m sharing a few of my favorite lemon treats below.  recipes only.  photos are on my old phone.  yep, still trying to figure out how to retrieve them.



1 box white cake mis (i like betty crocker)

2 eggs, divided

5 Tblsp. melted butter

1 c. sweetened flaked coconut

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

1 Tblsp. fresh lemon juice (yes, from a real lemon)

3 tsp. finely grated lemon zest

1/2 c. sugar

butter and flour a 9×13 pan.  i like to use the foil, disposable pans.  they cook real even in them.  just a preference of mine.  i’m sure professional bakers would not agree.  hey, i’m just a mom and an artist and an occasional cake baker.  what do i know?

preheat oven to 350.  mix cake mix, 1 of the eggs, butter and coconut together.  it will be crumbly.  reserve 1 c. of the mixture for the topping and set aside.  press remaining dough into prepared pan.  bake for 12 minutes.  remove from oven.  while crust is baking, mix cream cheese and lemon zest.  add lemon juice, sugar and the other egg.  spread over crust.  sprinkle remaining mixture on top.  bake for 25 more minutes or until golden on top.  cool on counter.  refrigerate until ready to serve.  so yummy if you make them the day before your event and they are cold and chewy.  omG… i want one right now!




1 c. flour, 1/2 c. chopped walnuts, 1/2 c. butter, softened, 2 Tblsp. sugar

mix and spread into lightly greased 9×11 pan.  bake at 350 for 10 minutes.  cool completely.


1 c. cool whip, 8 oz. cream cheese, softened

whip together and spread over crust.


2 small packages instant lemon pudding, 2 3/4 c. 2% milk.

mix together on medium speed until thick.  spread over frosting.


1 large container cool whip.

cover the filling with cool whip.  then refrigerate for at least two hours.

ok, here’s the deal… i like to make 2 small ones in 8×8″ pans.  they are thinner but this method is worth it if you want the majority of the cake for yourself….  i keep one (covered in foil) in the back of the refrigerator since nobody in my family looks back there, and the other in the front (covered in clear wrap).  you can use your imagination.  yes, midnight, when all are asleep, sneak to kitchen, eat directly out of your own in the back with a spoon.  ahhhhhhhhhhhh.  you will thank me for this tip.



1 c. butter

2 c. flour

1/2 c. powdered sugar

4 eggs

3 Tblsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

4 Tblsp. flour

2 c. sugar

2 tsp. lemon rind

1 tsp. baking powder

powdered sugar for dusting on top


preheat oven to 350.  combine butter, flour and 1/2 c. powdered sugar.  mix well.  pat into a 9×13 pan.


while crust is baking, mix together eggs, lemon juice, flour, sugar. lemon rind and baking powder.  as soon as crust comes out of oven, pour mixture over top and return to oven for 25 min longer.


when lemon bars are finished baking, immediately dust with sifted powdered sugar.  cool.  cut into squares.  refrigerate.

special note:  i like mine frozen.  they get sticky, ewey gooey and firm.  a great summer treat!


that’s it.

i’m sure i could share more.

but you guessed it… i have to take my kid to baseball.

happy thursday.


p.s.  if you want more recipes, email me at and request a cookbook.  they are $15 each (plus $4 for shipping).


the best clam dip ever. thank you lois fisher (aka grandma lois)…


it’s the holiday season.

and i am feeling nostalgic.

i miss greg’s mom, lois.

lois LOVED Christmas.  it was her favorite time of year.  she made sure everyone’s gift was perfect.  she shopped for months.  she called many many many times.  she wrapped them all early (not like me who wraps them after church on Christmas eve praying each kid has an equal amount… and that i can find the scotch tape… all while trying not to tip over my glass of wine that i desperately need).  she even had matching bows, ribbons and tags on all of them (i started off with bows years ago… now just wrap and throw under tree).  she would ask early on what we all wanted.  of course we’d say… “oh, lois… you don’t have to do anything for us.”.  but she did.  and she always bought the perfect gifts.  it was never about the money or making sure everyone had the same amount.  she just made sure each person knew she personally chose that gift as theirs.  every year she gave me a big box of socks.  she collected them all year long.  when i say socks, i mean a lot of socks.  work out socks.  knee high socks.  warm winter socks.  toe socks.  trouser fancy socks.  and always at least one pair of socks that had cocktails or something funny printed on them.  i just ran across the box she gave me last year.  it still has two pair of socks in it i have not worn.  it still has the tag, to: tracy  love: lois.  i just can’t make myself wear the last two pair.  because i know there won’t be any more boxes of socks.

the Lord took lois to heaven quite unexpectedly this year.  we all grieved very hard.

Christmas will not be the same without her.

so, when i was having a craving for a dip the other day, i grabbed my little cookbook and turned to page 5 and there is was…



1 can chopped clams, drained

1 can minced clams, drained (but set aside 1-2 Tblsp. of liquid)

2 8oz. pkg of philadelphia brand cream cheese

1 tsp. garlic salt

1 tsp. garlic powder

mix all ingredients in a bowl.  add the liquid to smooth and make dippable.  you do not want to break your chips while dipping.  that’s important, you know.  feel free to add less or more of the garlic salt and powder to your liking per lois.  i just follow the recipe exactly how she told me and believe me, i’ve never been disappointed.

important note:  must be served with ruffles plain potato chips!  that’s what she said.  lets not tell her i like it with baked lays too.

lois, i know you are watching over us this year.  we promise to keep family strong.  and yes, we will make the dip on Christmas eve.  just like you like it.  and i promise to make greg your spritz cookies he loves.  hugs and kisses to you!!!

so, when i hear people complain about stores putting out Christmas decorations too early, all i can say is… do it!  lois would have loved that!!

happy wednesday.


ps.. i just ordered more cookbooks.  they should be here next week.  email me at if you want one.  $15 each.

“f” is for friday and fudge (hot fudge, that is)…


a day truly deserved!




so, why not whip up some homemade hot fudge sauce.

ok, make some boozy caramel sauce too.

pick up some vanilla ice cream.

and a can of spray whip cream.

and a jar of cherries.

and wait for your kids to come home with their candy tomorrow night and top your sundae with their treats!

here are my personal recipes for ice cream toppings.

oh, and i like mine with gummy bears sprinkled on top.  just sayin.  in case you invite me over.



1 c. sugar

1/3 c. cocoa

2 Tblsp. flour

1/4 tsp. salt

1 c. boiling water

1 Tblsp. butter

1 tsp. vanilla

mix together the sugar, cocoa, flour and salt.  add 1 c. boiling water.  cook over medium heat until thick.  remove from heat and add vanilla.  serve hot, warm or cold.


1/4 c. butter

1/2 c. light brown sugar

2 Tblsp. light corn syrup

1/2 c. heavy whipping cream

1 Tblsp. Maker’s Mark bourbon

pinch of salt

melt butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and cream in saucepan.  keep on medium heat for at least 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  if it starts to boil, turn it down.  once it thickens, add bourbon and a tiny pinch of salt.  stir.  cool.  refrigerate overnight.


happy friday.


it’s halloween in 2 days? nobody told me…


and it’s also mason’s 15th bday.

we used to have huge parties at our house.  lots of people came.  opened our doors every halloween for over 10 years.  sandwiches, chips, pop & adult bevies… and a cake made of anything other than cake mix.  one year donuts.  one year twinkies.  one year swiss rolls.  one year oreos.  never real cake.  now he has grown up.  he’s a man.  not really… still my baby.

holy cow.  where did time go?

i do know one thing…

everyone in our family gets a donut on their birthday.


whether i have to go to the store in the pouring down rain the night before to choose from the ones that were left, or if i can get my act together and get up at 5:00am and go get a fresh one, they will get woken up with a donut and a lit candle on top.

and yes, i do sing to them.  whether they like it or not.  i think they secretly love it.

it’s my one tradition i never forget.

(thank you for reminding me)


omg.  yes.  gotta make some of these.  way cool.



if they are lucky i will make these too.  yummo.



just noticed we don’t have one pumpkin on the porch this year.

what is my problem?

with brooke in college, greg working 2 hours away, and mason having a big social life… do i really need to carve a pumpkin?

i might just carve a pineapple.



swamp juice.  this one’s for me.

( for recipe)

i love gummy worms.  i love lime.  the only thing i’d do differently is i’d add just a tad (or more) of frozen vodka.



that’s it.

not a very crazy halloween around here this year.

we were invited to a party but greg has to work this weekend.  and he got asked by his old high school buddies to go to the UW football game.  um, i’m a WSU cougar so i don’t usually attend them.  and really, to be honest with you, a rainy, cold college football game with 4 old HS friends really doesn’t sound like my best night ever… so i said no to the couples costume party.  i mean really… who goes to a halloween party alone?  do they?  should i?  i don’t know.  got an offer from a friend to whoop it up somewhere local.  hmmm.

decisions.  decisions.

speaking of decisions.  so proud of my stud kid.  he was invited to a party at his new school by some girls.  he was really excited.  then got invited to another party at his old school also by some girls.  HEY, what’s with the girls???  his friends bailed on him to go to the second party.  and he said he’d already told the first party he’d show up.  wow, didn’t know he had that in him.  stuck with his guns.  i even told him i’d pick him up and drive him to the other party which is in the neighborhood next door.  maybe.  but he said he made a commitment.  and my answer to him was… good boy… you are true to your word… that is one of his strongest traits to be honest with you… and he would have done the same if he were invited to the other party first.   i told  him this is where really cool things happen… like you meet the girl of your dreams… or you make some fun friends… or something… it’s just fun to see what is in store.  have fun. oh, my sweet halloween birthday boy.  i love you.

probably should tell these new girls.  gotta find out who they are first.  haha.

and brooke… our sweet brooke.  called the other night needing costume ideas for a few guy friends of hers.  we searched pinterest and chatted for an hour.  ok, i searched pinterest while she talked and did her thing on the other side of the screen.  i love facetime.  best invention ever!  can’t wait to see what they all wear.

hope your halloween is fun and happy.

when my family is happy, i’m happy.

so, looks like it’s going to be a good one this year.

gotta run… getting ingredients for the swamp juice.  if nothing else, that’s what i’m doing for halloween.

happy thursday.


vacation plans made. i love the desert…

october19palm desertg

palm desert here i come.

can’t wait to see my brookie baby.

just a few more weeks.

when i looked for new fun palm springs art, this popped up.  it was for a show a few years back that donated proceeds of the evening to a the artists cause.  and that is a great thing in itself.  barbie was featured all over the springs.  loved it.  wish i’d been there.  hilarious.  tongue and cheek art is lost these days.  everyone is afraid to paint humor.  afraid of what others say.  hey, people  use the “f” word all of the time.  people need to lighten up.  art is art.  if you don’t like it, that’s okay.  if you like it, then buy it and help support your local artist.

october19palm desertcoctober19palm desertboctober19palm desertc

this year i want to buy a fun blow up toy for the pool.

so many fun choices. and

october19palm desert kate spade

then i’m going to walk the strip.  okay, that sounds bad.  what i meant to say is… take my walk down el paseo and daydream about all of the fancy things i want to buy one day.

if i won lotto, i swear i would still like the same quirky things.

might just have to see how much these kate spade polka dot glasses are.  and

october19palm deserta

then there is cocktail time by the pool with my friends.

best part of these friends, is that i am the youngest one at the table by at least 20 years.

way to bring back my youth.

and i always try out a new recipe on the crew.

this year… lobster rolls!

cute, little ones.  bite size.  adorable.


well, that’s it.

enough about dreaming of my trip.

time to take mason to baseball practice.

and i’d better get painting.

i have an art show at bellarmine high school (ladies night) on thursday, november 12.

yes, i will post art on line too.

happy tuesday.