DIY 5

Along with Bath Salts, I decided to make my sister and mom scarfs for Christmas. Sweet CS Designs gave a great step-by-step tutorial on how to make infinity scarves.

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  1. To make this scarf, you’ll need 1 to 1.5 yards of fabric. I used spunky printed flannel fabric for my sister‘s.
  2. You’ll basically make a long fabric tube. It helps if you picture it that way during the process! First, fold your fabric in half hotdog style (make it the longest it can be).
  3. Cut down the middle of the fold so that you have two long strips.
  4. With the right sides of the fabric facing together, straight stitch the two long strips together at the short end. You should now have a long piece of fabric stitched in the middle.
  5. Open the long strip then fold it in half again long ways (hotdog) so that the right sides are facing and sew together down the long side.
  6. Turn the fabric tube right side out and fold down the remaining ends together (interlocking them) creating the loop and sew across.

 

For my mom’s scarves I didn’t complete Step 6 but instead folded each end under and sewed them so they wouldnt be connected. That way she’s able to wear it any way she’d like rather than being restricted to the infinity style.

These were super easy to make and they loved them!

Enjoy,
♥ B

Wonderful Whimsical Wednesday

I love finding unique items on the web! Like card catalog minibars!

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source: the sugar monster

Or suitcases turned medicine cabinet! This is a great idea for all the vintage luggage I’ve collected.

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source: matador network

These witty postcards are all the rage nowadays… some of them, not so funny, others–pretty spot on.

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Ya see, most people think that Journalists should be excellent spellers… not the case with this girl. I have to spell-check my texts often.

And because I recently bought tickets to see the a-maz-za-zing Avett Brothers for Valentine’s Day. Here’s one of their lovely ballads that’s been rocking my world.

Design a Tea

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I found this awesome website called Design a Tea. You can choose a base tea, pick your favorite flavors, and enjoy your custom blend. For a tea lover, this sounds amazing! To sweeten the site, you can try 2 free samples of tea you create for only $1 (no s&h) and then receive a $2 credit for your next purchase! Sounds pretty great, right?! Well I’ve ordered my sample and will let you all know how it goes!

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I’m not a huge jewelry wearer but this ring is so different and pretty that I love it! Not to mention the green is my birthstone!

Why yes, I do believe I want to visit here!

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4 seasons resort: bora bora

Happy Wednesday! ♥ B

DIY 4

For Christmas, I decided to get creative and make some of the gifts I was giving (yes, Pinterest was the inspiration). I decided to make some of the lovely ladies in my life some bath salts. I found this super easy ‘recipe’ from Intimate Weddings. They used the bath salts as wedding shower favors but they worked just as well for Christmas.

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You’ll need:

Cute jars or containers
3/4 cup Epsom salts
1/2 cup coarse sea salt
1/4 cup baking soda
8 drops essential oil
food coloring

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I used jars I purchased from Ikea
Clove and Cinnamon essential oils from my local Co-Op to ensure the salts smelled Christmasy
I also used ‘Relax and Relief’ Epsom salts to provide a clearing minty aspect but I would advise using plain Epsom salts (later found in the Pharmacy section at Wal-Mart) because the mint overpowered the clove/cinnamon a bit.
I added enough drops of red food coloring to give it a pink/red tint but not enough to risk dissolving the salts.

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To add another element to the gift, I wrapped each Bath Salts Jar in a dish towel I purchased at Ikea for $0.79!

Enjoy,
♥ B

Dinner Recipe

Crock Pot Barbecue Ribs, Roasted Rosemary Potatoes,

and Honey-Glazed Carrots

Honey-Glazed Carrots from Martha Stewart
Ingredients:

1 tbsp veg oil
2 pounds carrots, cut into 1-in lengths, halved if thick
1 c. canned reduced-sodium chicken broth or water
1/2 c honey
2 tbsp red-wine vinegar
s&p
2 tbsp unsalted butter

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high, add carrots, cook stirring once, until beginning to brown (2 mins).

Add broth, honey and vinegar; season with s&p. Bring to boil; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until crisp-tender, 10 mins. Uncover, and cook over med-high until carrots are tender and liquid is syrupy, 7-9 mins more (there should only be a small amount of liquid remaining).

Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Spread olive oil on the bottom of the pan
Chunk several peeled potatoes into similar sizes and place in pan
Wash several stems of fresh rosemary and pick off leaves, crush in hand, and spread over potatoes
Add garlic if desired
Bake at 400 degrees until browned and crisp. (approx 45mins-1hr)

Crock Pot Ribs by Team Hess

Ingrediedants
3 lbs pork or beef ribs
1 c. water
1/4c cooking sherry
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
s&p
1/2 c barbecue sauce
(I added liquid smoke, added slightly more water and barbecue sauce too)

Place ribs standing upright in crock pot (lean rips against wall so they’re not lying in water on bottom). Pour in sherry and water. Sprinkle with Worcestershire sauce and salt and peper. Pour barbecue sauce over ribs. Cook on low approximately 8 hours (7 would have worked for mine). Serve with additional barbecue sauce for dipping.

Lunch Recipe

Tortellini Vegetable Soup

Recipe as adapted from Spoonful
Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • Several handfuls of carrots, diced
  • 6 or so cups of chicken stock
  • dried basil
  • 1 can of crushed Italian style tomatoes
  • salt
  • 8-9 ounces of fresh tortellini filled with whatever is your favorite (cheese, meat, spinach)
  • cracked black pepper

 

Heat the olive oil in a medium soup pot. Add the onion and carrots. Saute over moderate heat, stirring often, until the onion and carrots are soft.
Add the stock, basil, tomatoes, corn, and salt to pot. Increase the heat and bring to a low boil. Add the tortellini and bring the soup back to a low boil. Cook for 2 minutes, then reduce heat and let simmer for 5-6 minutes longer. Add pepper and other spices you’d like to add.
After ladled into bowls, top with shredded cheese.

Dinner Recipe

Shrimp & Asparagus in Wine Basil Sauce

 

Original Recipe from 28 Cooks IMG_1921

(Above image from 2nd time I made this recipe. This time I added fresh basil and oregano, local white wine, and bow-tie pasta)

Ingredients:

2 tbsp olive oil 2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red serrano pepper, diced
1/2 c white wine
1 tbsp butter
1/2 lb large shrimp, peeled, deveined, with tails intact
15 asparagus stalks, cut into 1 1/2 pieces
1 tbsp lemon jice
2 cups fresh basil, thinly sliced
rice or pasta

Heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add garlic and pepper, saute for 1 minute. Add wine and butter, bring to boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add shrimp and asparagus, and saute until done, about 3 minutes. Add lemon juice and basil and toss until basil is wilted. Serve over pasta or rice.

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What I Actually Made:

2 tbsp olive oil 2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c white wine
1 tbsp butter
Probably closer to 3/4 lb large shrimp, peeled, deveined, with tails intact (tails were just an annoyance. I recommend tailless)
1/2 of the bundle of asparagus stalks, washed and snapped at natural breaking point. ***
2 tbsp lemon juice
dried basil from spice rack
angel hair pasta

Heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add wine and butter, bring to boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add shrimp and asparagus, and saute until asparagus is tender but hasn’t lost its color. Add lemon juice and basil  Serve over pasta. When I make this again, I’m going to add drained pasta into the skillet with the sauce, shrimp, and asparagus and toss together well. The sauce will cover everything much better this way.

***Note: Hold an asparagus spear firmly and bend it until it breaks naturally. The spear should break at the point where it becomes tough. Visually, the stalks will not be the same length.

This recipe is delicious. Even though I’m a sauce person, both The Man and I thoroughly enjoyed this light flavorful dish.

-Time-

I dont think we can really understand how time passes. We can’t study it like a river or tame it with a clock. Our devices only mark its coming and going. Some things have to end, you know. You feel like life is always leading up to something, but it isn’t. I mean life is just life. It’s all happening right now, and we aren’t going to be any more complete a month from now than we are now.
~Donald Miller, Through Painted Deserts

Dessert Recipe

Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes with Whipped Cream

Delicious Fall Treat by Your Cup of Cake

Pumpkin Pie Cakes
24 Golden Oreos
½ cup oil
½ cup applesauce
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup brown sugar
15 ounces pumpkin puree (the small can)
2 ¾ cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
Whipped Cream Topping
1 pint heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar
cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice to decorate
Directions:
1.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pans with cupcakes liners (yields 24).
2.    Split the Oreos and drop them at the bottom of each liner, cream side up. (You can use the non cream side as decoration at the end it you want.)
3.    Gently combine eggs, oil, applesauce and vanilla.
4.    Stir in brown sugar and sugar for several minutes.
5.    Stir in pumpkin puree.
6.   In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
7.    Add dry ingredients to oils/sugars and stir only until combined.
8.   Fill cupcake liners ¾ full and bake for 17-25 minutes, or until an inserted knife or toothpick comes out clean.
9.   Whipped Topping:  Using a whisk or whisk attachment, beat heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form.  Add powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until combined.

10. Spoon onto cooled cupcakes and sprinkle cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice on top to decorate.

I normally judge a cupcake by its batter but with this one, DONT! Taste testing the beaters/spoons/bowls will not prove nearly as tasty as the end result! I was very skeptical before baking but these cupcakes are da bomb! I love the surprise crunch at the bottom from the cookie, which, by the way, doesn’t get soft after baking. All in all, thumbs way up!