Saturday, July 12, 2014

I Am Today's Feature on Remodelaholic!

Guess what, peeps?!?!?!?!

My entertainment center makeover is
being featured on Remodelaholic today!


I am soooo excited I just can't stand it!
Please come by and say hello!

There are more pictures and I'll be answering questions.
Go to the post on Remodelaholic right now!!!

Pretty please?



Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day!
Happy 4th of July!
Happy fireworks and barbecue...


Today we celebrate our freedom...

Freedom to chase whatever dreams we have...
Freedom to worship in the manner we choose...
Freedom of speech, even if it bites us in the butt...
Freedom to do so many things we take for granted every day...


Remember freedom isn't free...
and we need to remember we live in the greatest country on Earth.
All because of people who were willing to fight for what they believed in.
Never stop dreaming.


Freedom isn't free, but salvation is.
More important than political freedom is spiritual freedom.
Our forefathers brought forth onto this continent a great nation,
but our Heavenly Father has made a place for us in His kingdom...
we just have to accept it.


We spent our morning watching the Greeley Stampede Parade...
I'd bet you don't have longhorns in your local parade...

Have a safe and happy holiday!
And don't forget...

It takes a really long time for eyebrows to grow back!
:)


sharing here:

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

No Reply At All

Are you a Phil Collins fan?
I don't have any albums, but
I think I'd say I am...
He certainly helped fuel my love affair
with Miami Vice back in the day.

I mean...who didn't have heart palpitations when Don Johnson
was walking around with all that sexy stubble and no socks?
Whooo.  Let me wipe the drool off my chin.

But I digress...that was so far off topic I need a map to get back...

Anyway...the bigger question here is:

   
I recently read this post from Chelsey @ Budget Girl
(okay, it wasn't so recently, this post has been sitting in my queue for a looong time)
that made me think about this in a whole new way.
You MIGHT be and there might just
be nothing you can do about it.

Because some of the things Blogger does is goofy.

So...I know I can be really bad about not responding to comments.
I DO really appreciate and love and read every.single.one.

But it feels contrived when I'm responding just to say "thanks" you know?
SO, thank you from the bottom of my heart!
...For being here, for reading my rambling randomness...
for taking the time to share some sweet words.
You're fabulous...just so you know.
Even if I don't respond to your sweetness.

 
However...if you ask me a question about some project or recipe or whatever...
I will do my best to get back to you as soon as I am able.
If you read Chelsey's post above...you'll find that sometimes
Blogger does not want to show me your email
address even if you entered it in your profile.
And if you have a Google+ profile it's no fun either.

I will spend a reasonable amount of time finding a way
to respond to you because I feel if it's important enough
for you to ask, it's important enough for me to answer.

If you ask a question and you don't get a response from me...
I am sorry...you may have to resort to checking
the post for the public reply on your question.
 
 
I know this is a frustrating topic,...
so, I've made you some cupcake cake pops so
we can drown our troubles in chocolate.

This is not huge, earth-shattering news...
but I wanted to address it and attempt to be amusing at the same time.
Shouldn't we always try to be amusing? :)
 
Well I hope you are having a fantastic week...
and if not, keep your chin up...
I'm pulling for you!
 
The bathroom makeover reveal is coming up soon...
I promise!
 
 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Super Fudgy Mocha Almond Flourless Brownies



Howdy, howdy!
Did you miss me?
I know I've not been around much lately,
and I don't see it improving any time soon.
So, you'll have to accept these scrumptious treats as a consolation prize.
Mocha Almond Flourless Brownies.
Not a bad trade, huh?


We've just been so busy trying to get
stuff done around the house...inside and out.
In the summertime there are even more things that need done, you know?
I'm trying to get the finishing touches on the bathroom redo...
and there are only so many hours once I get home in the evening...


And Supergirl, Sara...she's got a fabulous internship with
the Colorado Ballet this summer, so we only see her on the weekends,
and we try to make the best of those.
So, as much as I love being here to share with you guys,
it just won't be as often until things slow down around here.


In the meantime...these are worth turning the oven on for...
They really are super fudgy and totally delectable!
You might just want to make a double batch
and hide half of  them in your secret stash.
Don't tell me you don't have one.


Mocha Almond Flourless Brownies
  • 1 cup chocolate pieces (dark or semisweet, morsels work great)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder (I actually used 1/4 cup reg and 1/4 cup dark)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal or flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp espresso powder (or instant coffee if that's what you've got)
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1/2 cup or more roasted almonds, chopped
  1. preheat oven to 350°
  2. melt the chocolate and coconut oil over medium heat
  3. whisk the eggs and sugar together until creamy, gradually stir in the melted chocolate
  4. stir in the almond meal, cocoa powder, espresso powder, salt, vanilla, and almonds
  5. pour into a well-greased or parchment-lined 8 X 8 baking pan
  6. bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes
  7. cool completely, cut and devour

They will almost seem as if they are not quite done,
because they are so moist and fudgy, don't be fooled.
Just eat 'em!

I hope you're having a stupendous week!
See you next time!


 Feeding the chocolate addiction here:

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli ~ From Ready Set Eat!


I like to cook.
Don't get me wrong.
But I don't know about you guys, I just don't like to cook
every.single.day.

So I am always looking for easy and delicious
weeknight meals that don't come from a box.
Well, today I have just the solution...

Please welcome Elizabeth from ReadySetEat:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli


Ordering takeout can get expensive, and making the
same dishes at home can be quite easy!
Try making this Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli,
and you’ll only spend fifteen minutes for prep time.

Make sure to plan ahead since you’re using a slow cooker,
though, and start cooking earlier in the day.
Slow cookers are used a lot in the winter,
because they’re great for making tasty comfort foods,
but slow cookers are also useful in the
summer because they won’t heat up your house.


Ingredients

  • PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
  • 1 cup water, divided
  • 1/4 cup La Choy® Soy Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1-1/2 pounds beef flank steak
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 pkg. (16 oz. each) frozen broccoli florets
  • Hot cooked rice, optional

Directions

  1. Spray inside of 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Stir together 3/4 cup water, soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic and ginger in slow cooker. Add beef; turn to coat with soy sauce mixture.
  2. Cover; cook on LOW 7-1/2 hours or on HIGH 3-1/2 hours or until beef is tender. Remove beef from slow cooker. Combine cornstarch and remaining 1/4 cup water in small bowl; stir into slow cooker. Cover; cook on HIGH 15 minutes or until sauce thickens.
  3. Meanwhile, pull beef into shreds with 2 forks; cover to keep warm. Place broccoli in microwave-safe bowl. Cover; microwave on HIGH 5 minutes or until broccoli is thawed. Add beef and broccoli to slow cooker; stir to combine. Cover; cook on HIGH 15 minutes more or until mixture is hot. Serve with rice, if desired.

Author Bio: This is a guest post by Elizabeth L. on behalf of ReadySetEat.

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That sounds incredible!
And I am always telling myself to use my crockpot more.
Thanks, Elizabeth!

If you guys want to find some great quick and easy dinner ideas, 
or even sides and desserts...check out ReadySetEat RIGHT NOW!
Choose your item, enter your ingredients in the search tool...
and it will give you tasty ideas ready in 30 minutes or less!
Dinner is DONE.

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend!
And don't forget why we celebrate!
Thank you to all who defend our freedoms!


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Entertainment Center to TV Console Makeover


Helloooooo!
I have missed you!
NO, really.
And I almost feel the need to reintroduce myself......again. :)
sigh.

Anyway...we have been spending every spare minute working
on the bathroom redo and I have not had time to get this done!
I mean...it's been DONE.... but not done.  You know?

So...like my new entertainment center?
Wanna see what it used to look like?
KEEP READING!!!!!!   


SEE?????????
Here's the official Before and After...
but scroll down to see the magic in action! 


First...start with an outdated entertainment center.
Excuse the husband person...I forgot to take any
pics before we started taking things apart.

It actually used to have a partition on the upper left side with a glass door...
we took that off a couple years ago so we could fit the flat screen in there.


Let's back up, shall we?
It all started when Jon decided he wanted to mount the TV on the wall.
Ugh...ok.
Then what do we do with the entertainment center?
I didn't really like any of the consoles we saw...
unless we wanted to spend gobs of money...
sooooo not necessary.

We talked about making some shelves and baskets below รก la something I saw on Pinterest.
Then I had this brilliant idea to use what we already had.
I know...sometimes I amaze even myself.
So the story began...

First we removed the top...we knew we wanted to keep that part.


Then with a hand saw we cut off the vertical sides down to the bottom.
Pretty easy, it doesn't have to be pretty...just even.


See why pretty doesn't matter?
We're attaching the top piece the bottom section and it will cover any saw marks.
Unless you got really carried away and went all Texas Chainsaw on it or something.
Then I can't help you.


Once we made sure we had it centered on the bottom piece,
we used Gorilla wood glue in generous amounts and then set
some heavy things on the top while it dried for a couple days.
Oh...and we took the doors off...filled the screw holes and sanded.
Yep...forgot that part.



Once it was ready...I used some home mixed chalk paint...two coats later...
and it looks like it was always one short piece of furniture and never anything else.
This was Martha Stewart's Tidewater...
It's a little more green than aqua, but I made it work in the room.


A little dark wax and allover clear wax and you have an amazing transformation!
I searched high and low for the perfect size baskets...they were never to be found.
I found these almost perfect ones at World Market...but there was still something missing...


Besides the need to put some tools away...
my baskets needed some liners!
Perfect!!!
Not only did they unify the look, but they kept the CDs and DVDs
from leaning to and fro on the uneven seagrass weave.


I was going to do a tutorial on making liners for baskets...
but, NO...since mine didn't fit properly and I was mad at them
and just cut a slit in the back and blew raspberries at them...
I thought maybe I would pass on the how-to.
But they are pretty from the front! :)


The reason it took so long to get this out to you...
well, once we redid the TV console...the rest of the room needed a facelift.
I couldn't very well, just leave you with one little corner, could I?
This is our loft "bonus room" as it's called...but to us it's our TV room.
But since it's upstairs, it has always been the castoff room.
You know...the place you send the furniture and decor
you didn't want to use in the rest of the house?


Well, no more!  I wanted it to be cozy.
We don't watch tons of TV but when we do, it's a fun family time.
I wanted it to be a relaxing place to hang out.
We did get a new loveseat and extra wide chair, but that's because we really needed them.
Then I began brainstorming decor.
I was going for cottage style when I planned the console, so I went with the whole room.

Now, I can't say my interpretation of cottage style and yours are compatible.
That doesn't matter, all that matters is we love it.
It's cozy and has a collected look...that's the story I'm going with.


It started with this big framed Rodney White print I picked
up at Tuesday Morning a couple years ago.
I have always loved it and never had a place for it.
I decided it was becoming a focal point in this room
The "frieze" above the TV came from Hobby Lobby.
You can see I moved the Barnwood Flower Box up here...I like it here even better.


But anyway...I also shopped the house and the garage.
The large star above I used to have in the living room...
The old window has been collecting dust and spider webs
in the garage for longer than I can remember.
I had primed it once, sloppily...with plans to paint it black...
then I was struck by inspiration to paint it one of the
twelve thousand samples of aqua paint I have...
genius.


But know...scraping paint is one of my least favorite things to do...
this little razor blade was the bane of my existence for several evenings after dinner.

I used my Silhouette to cut some birds on a wire from vinyl...
and I am in love with my new wall art.
I hung it sideways because it worked better in the space and with the birds.
Sweet, huh?
The clock I adore came from Decor Steals I think...I have a thing for clocks.
The blue bird is from Hobby Lobby.


Our loveseat and chair came with some hideous throw pillows.
I mean, so ugly, even a mother would have a hard time, you know?
That was an easy fix, I just picked up some fun coordinating fabric
and sewed some super simple envelope covers for them.
{Almost} instant makeover.

{***I found the link above for you because she made hers almost exactly like I made mine,
but know this...I detest ironing and would never do such a detestable thing to something
I'm going to be mashing up against on the couch! :) ha ha}


I found the aqua button pillow at HomeGoods and wish
I had gotten it's large square counterpart.
My mom warned me...she said I'd be sorry...and of course, she was right.
Dangit.

The fun sunburst mirror I picked up at Hobby Lobby...on sale, because, really.
The chunky cable throw was 80% off...because I wasn't going to pay $80 for it!
Crazy.  I bought 2 of the 3 they had...and should have gotten all 3.
And my last crafty contribution...I made the LOVE sign
with some scrap wood, some chalk paint, vinyl, and some fabric strips.



And there you have it...
A whole room change because of one man's desire to wall-mount the television.
In the end...it was a good decision. :)
Thanks, love.


There's still a side table you didn't see beside the oversized chair that I need to paint,
but it's basically a done deal.
It's fun and cozy to hang out here and lounge around.
To me it feels much like a vacation cottage or something.


Eclectic and collected, just like the rest of my life. :)
And like this print I mentioned above:
"We tend to seek happiness...when happiness is actually a choice."
See why I love it so?


I spent about $40 for paint, baskets, and fabric...
which is a bargain when you consider most of the
new consoles we saw started at around $300...
that's a $260 or more savings!
Yay me!

Well, the bathroom I bought the paint for a year an a half ago...
we've made tons of progress on...but it's kinda slow going.
I'd say we're over half done...I think the hardest part is over.
I need to get it done, so I can put the toilet back in there.
We keep hoping no one drops by unexpectedly.
 :)

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there...
whether by birth or by love...
Have a great one!!!


Sharing here:

Natasha in Oz
Kitchen Table Art
Dwellings
The Gunny Sack
A Stroll Thru Life
The Dedicated House
Kammy's Korner
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
My Craftily Ever After
Home Stories A to Z
Upcycled Treasures
Cedar Hill Farmhouse
HomeComing
My Life of Travels and Adventures
My Savvy Southern Style
Life With the Crust Cut Off
Ivy and Elephants
The Happy Housie
Lamberts Lately
Living Well Spending Less
Live Laugh Rowe
Saving 4 Six
Embracing Change
From My Front Porch to Yours
Nancherrow
Redoux Interiors
Craft Dictator
AKA Design
Love Bakes Good Cakes
The Golden Sycamore
Crafts a la Mode
Love of Family and Home
The Idea Room
Horrific Knits
Put a Bird On It
Remodelaholic
Will Cook For Smiles
Serenity You
Made from Pinterest
Reasons to Skip the Housework
I Heart Naptime
Six Sisters Stuff
Fluster Buster
Glitter Glue and Paint
Funky Junk Interiors
Life on Lakeshore Drive
Thrifty Decor Chick
Ella Claire

Saturday, April 12, 2014

How To Make A Fondant Bunny

I don't do a lot of "decorating" for Easter...
so I didn't figure I had anything fun to share...

Then myself reminded me that I had made a little Easter cake
a couple of years ago with one of these cuties on it:


Myself has a bad habit of remembering things at the very last minute...
so that is why you are getting this little tutorial
ONE WEEK before EASTER!
So sorry. :)


Most cakers use gum paste for figures...
if you want them rock hard faster, do that.
I just use fondant because I'm impatient and don't like messing with gum paste.

Satin Ice is my favorite...especially if you plan
to use it on cake and actually EAT it.
(this White Buttercream flavor is new and pretty good)


Get yourself a nice sized glob of fondant...
and cover the rest up...it dries out quickly.


Divide your fondant into 3 sections about this big.
I actually had a little too much and ended up with a chubby bunny.

Side note: did you ever play that game in youth group where
you had to stuff your mouth with as many marshmallows as
you possibly could and then say "chubby bunnies" several times?

***insert crickets chirping***

NO?

Welllllllll........me neither then, I was just checking.


Anyway...
Take your middle sized ball and start to pinch one side to shape the ears...


Just keep working it and smoothing it until you get the length you want.


Next start to shape the rest of the head...mine has fat cheeks...


and from the side you can see I tried to make the
bottom of his face elongated like a bunny's.

Shape your largest ball into a sort of bunny body.
Adjust size if necessary.


from your smallest ball take a couple equal pieces and shape the feet


Make the side that goes under the body flat and dab with a little
water on the end of your finger to stick them to the bottom of the body.
Use a tooth pick or the edge of a knife to make some bunny "toes."


Take two more small equal pieces and roll into arms.
Flatten the top edges and attach to top of body portion using a dab of water again.
These should be placed so that they're under the head once it's on.


Now to finish the face.
You should have a little piece left...
from that make two small flat, round pieces...cheeks
one very small long round piece...nose
and a small rectangular piece with a dent in the middle for the teeth.


Petal dust (top) is great for coloring fondant, but not always readily found.
You can get it at cake and candy supply stores and some kitchen stores.
However, pearl dust (the long tubes), is made by
Wilton and can be found at Hobby Lobby.
  
Attach the face pieces in this order...
Teeth
Cheeks
Nose

Using a clean paint brush, I applied the petal dust and made my nose dark,
and used a little less to make my cheeks rosy.
You can do the same with the pearl dust, it may just be lighter.
(I used the white pearl dust over the WHOLE bunny once he was done)


Using the other end of the paint brush, make two small dents for eyes...


Can you see them there?
If not, no big deal...


Use an edible food marker to fill in the eyes...
these have a nice wide pointed tip, so you could even
JUST use the marker to make the dents.


Now...comes the waiting.
As you can see, my bunny is sitting on a piece of parchment...
That is so he doesn't stick to the table.
You could also use wax paper or the shiny side of freezer paper.

Shape your bunny ears how you will want them to be when they harden.
One up, one down...both floppy, whatever.
But he needs to set up and harden AT LEAST
overnight for his ears to stay standing.

Once the fondant has hardened, place the head on the body,
you can use a little water dabbed again, to make the
body and bottom of the head sticky and attach.
(you can use a toothpick for more stability...make sure you place it
while the fondant is still soft, and make the hole in the body also.
 Then allow to dry inserted into the head.)


Look at that face!!!!
Now you have an adorable little bunny
to put on top of your Easter cake.
Well, I guess that is if you MADE an Easter cake.


 Little Bunny Foo Foo
hopping through the forest...


...scooping up the field mice
and boppin' 'em on the head...


OOOPS...
Wrong bunny...


Don't you just wanna pinch his cheeks?

Here is my original bunny sitting on his little cake.
I went to find him (I still have him) in his box,
and his ears had broken off! (The old one, not the new)
It was very sad. :(


The "eggs" are colored fondant, so are the rolled flowers.
And the grass was easy...just use the grass tip with some green buttercream.


Ta DA!

Doesn't he just make you smile?
He does me!

 I know this is last minute, but I hope I've inspired you to
make your own little bunny for your Easter dessert this year.
Let me know if you give it a try...
and if you have any questions.

Have an awesome weekend!


Hopping along to these parties: