Saturday, September 20, 2014

Sunday, August 31, 2014

August Focus: The Public Library



Ok, so I use the public library probably 75% of the time when I'm picking up books--so this month isn't too much of a challenge for me. But, I had a massive stack of library books that I needed to get through so I decided to make my month a broad theme of books/movies from the library!

Read: The Silkworm
Watched: Nebraska
Watched: Inside Llewyn Davis
Read: Flora and Ulyssis
Read: Dear Mr. Knightley
Read: Dad is Fat
Read: Landline
Read: The Devil in the White City
Read: Daddy Long Legs
Read: The Death Class
Reading: TransAtlantic


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Zoo Animal Puppets

I love making little finger puppets...which works out well because I love giving them to people. Here is a set that I made up for one of my pregnant friends!

I looked up a bunch of ideas on Pinterest but mostly based my puppets off of these!


Monday, August 25, 2014

Tasty Zucchini Fries

Oh my gosh these are so good. 


This is the perfect recipe to make when your garden is overflowing with zucchinis...or in my case, my CSA box! I looked at a bunch of different recipes but I ended up liking this one the best. Enjoy!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Soft Flannel Baby Blanket



Here is a lovely little baby blanket I made. It is so soft and light, I think this will be a cozy, versatile blanket for my friend's upcoming little baby!


How I did it: I pinned two yards of fabric right sides together then sewed around the edges. I left about six inches open and flipped the quilt inside out. I then stitched the hole shut and sewed all the way around the edges again about 1/4 inch away from the edge. I then tied it off with yarn. 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Napa Cabbage Salad

This recipe is so delicious. So delicious. I grew up with something like this but recently discovered it again here when I was searching for what to make with a head of napa cabbage that I had gotten in my CSA box.


Here is what you need:

1 head napa cabbage (shredded)
1 bunch green onions (minced)
1/3 cup butter
1 (3 oz) package ramen noodles, broken
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup cider vinegar
3/4 cup oil
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce

Ok, here is what you do:

1. Combine the green onions and cabbage in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
3. Melt the butter in a pot. Mix in the ramen noodles, sesame seeds and almonds. Spoon the mixture onto a baking sheet and bake in the oven until they are lightly browned.
4. Meanwhile in a small saucepan heat the vinegar, oil, sugar, and soy sauce. Bring the mixture to a boil and let boil for 1 minute. Remove the pan from heat and let cool.
5. Combine the dressing, the ramen mixture, and cabbage immediately before serving.

Enjoy! Try not to eat it all immediately. Take it from me...you'll get a stomach ache.


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Zucchini Tater Tots

The other night, I was practically starving and considering ordering a pizza but decided instead to whip something up. I saw this recipe here and decided to give it a try. And you know what? So much better than pizza! Really!


You need:
  • 1 c potatoes (shredded)
  • 1 small zucchini (shredded)
  • ¼ c breadcrumbs
  • ¼ c shredded cheddar cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • ¼ t onion powder
  • 1 egg
Here is what you need to do:
  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F and spray a mini muffin pan with cooking spray or olive oil.
  2. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the shredded potatoes and zucchini.
  3. Place the potatoes and zucchini in a bowl and add the remaining ingredients.
  4. Scoop the mixture into the prepared muffin pan and press them down a bit. You can make these smaller (to get about 20 tots) but I made mine a bit bigger and made 12.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Spicy Caramelized Purple Cabbage and Basil



I've never done anything with cabbage before but was really pleased with this recipe. It had some spice to it but the sugar really gives it a nice balance of flavors.

You need:

1 Small Head Purple Cabbage

1 Half Onion

3 Cloves Garlic

Large Handful of Basil

4 Tbsp Olive Oil

1/4 Tsp Cayenne Powder

1/4 Tbsp Red Pepper Flakes

Sea Salt and Black Pepper
Sugar

Directions:

First heat a large pan on medium and add the oil, cayenne, and red pepper. Slice the onion; throw into the pan and cover. Cook the onions until they start to caramelize. In the meantime, quarter the cabbage, then slice it into finger-wide slices. Chop the garlic up fairly well and set to the side. Once the onions start to get a light brown color, throw in the cabbage and give the pan a good toss; cover and let cook down for about 4 minutes. Roll up all of your basil and give it a slice. Once the cabbage has reduced in size a bit, season with salt and pepper and throw in the garlic. Give it 2 more minutes, then turn off the heat and toss in half of the basil; plate immediately and cover with remaining basil. Sprinkle with sugar.

Enjoy!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Zuchinni Pineapple Loaf


I saw this recipe over here and wanted to give it a try! I am a sucker for any type of bread so I pretty much knew I would love this...and true to my taste buds, I did!

Here is what you need:

3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups zucchini (grated)
1 cup pineapple (crushed)
3 hours flour
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp nutmeg

Here is what you need to do:
Whisk eggs, oil, vanilla and sugar together in a large bowl. Stir in zucchini and pineapple. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix everything together and stir until moistened. Pour into two large, greased loaf pans. Bake at 350° F for 1 hour.

Enjoy!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Stumbled Upon Favorites

I love this short film. So funny.

I Love Summer...and water slides.

A backpack bike! So amazing...and handy!

I want my own set of red boxes now...

This turtle video is so adorable and also very frustrating to watch...


Saturday, August 2, 2014

An Easy Shirt Revamp



It is amazing what a few simple chops can do to revive an unwanted shirt. I had this shirt for months and never wanted to wear it. The color is a bit brighter than I typically wear so it was a bit overwhelming to me with the addition of colorful sleeves. So I chopped those sleeves off and am so much happier with it! Funny how such a small of difference can make a shirt seem like new.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

July Focus: Memoirs


I read A Girl Named Zippy about six years ago and  I've been a sucker for memoirs ever since. I love having the chance to see glimpses into another person's life--and when the voice is unique and the stories are powerful...it is the perfect combination! I had been stockpiling a couple memoirs for quite some time now so I figured July would be a great month to focus on them.

Wow--I read a heck of a lot of books this month! Here is the list:

Read: My Stroke of Insight
Read: My Brain on Fire
Read: The Bedwetter
Read: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Read: Let's Pretend This Never Happened
Read: I Was Told There'd Be Cake
Read: Breaking Night
Read: Are you there, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea
Read: This Boy's Life
Read: The Duke of Deception
Reading: Same Kind of Different As Me



Let me know if you have any memoirs to recommend!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Fingerling Potato Salad with Gremolata Dressing




We received this amazing bundle of potatoes in our CSA box from Telltale Farms and I was super excited to make the potato salad recipe that came along with them.

Here is what you need:

1 pound red fingerling potatoes
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 garlic clove, crushed and minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Here is what you need to do:

1. Steam potatoes for about 12 minutes or until tender. Cover and chill.
2. Combine juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl; slowly add oil, stirring well with a whisk. Stir in rind and garlic; let stand 10 minutes. Stir in parsley.
3. Cut potatoes into quarters; add potatoes to juice mixture, tossing to coat.

Enjoy!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Farm Animal Finger Puppets



 I mentioned in June that I had made some farm animal finger puppets for my nephew and niece. And here is the picture proof.  I looked up a bunch of different farm finger puppet ideas on Pinterest but mostly ended up modeling my puppets off of this set and this set. Pretty adorable, huh? My favorite is the chicken.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Roasted Carrots and Cauliflower with Walnuts




Is this not absolutely gorgeous? And it is equally as delicious, I promise. We whipped this up together one night and then I fought my way to getting to eat it all. The recipe came along with the carrots, cauliflower, and parsley from our favorite Telltale Farms!

What you need:

 4 medium carrots , peeled and thinly sliced on an angle
 1 small head cauliflower, trimmed into small florets
 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
 Salt and freshly ground black pepper
 3 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts
 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Here is what you need to do:

First off, preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Then toss the carrots and cauliflower in a bowl with 3 teaspoons of the oil, the thyme, and sprinkle with salt pepper until well coated. Spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast the vegetables for about 25 minutes, stirring once or twice.  Season with more salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, cook the walnuts in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring, until toasted,  about 5 minutes. Pour into a small bowl and toss with the parsley, lemon zest and remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle over the roasted vegetables.

Enjoy!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Crazy Quilt Color Fabric Book

I made this little fabric book full of colorful crazy quilts for my new little nephew. His mom loves books (almost!) as much as me so I knew she would appreciate having a colorful, touch friendly book to show him. I've been saving all of my fabric scraps for the last year so I had a lot of great options to fill this book with.


  

 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Frittata with Purple Cauliflower and Green Beans

I was super excited to receive a purple cauliflower in our CSA box. I had never seen a purple cauliflower before and was delighted by how pretty it was! Combined with the green beans and the eggs, it made such a beautiful frittata, don't you agree?!


This recipe arrived with our box from Telltale Farms...and it is delicious!

You will need:

1 Small onion, diced
Handful of green beans (ends removed and chopped in short segments)
Handful of purple cauliflower florets
4 Eggs
Small bunch parsley, chopped
Salt & Pepper
Olive Oil
Parmesan Cheese (optional)

Here is what you need to do:

Fry the onion in a frying pan on low heat until they become translucent. Add in the green beans and shortly after add in the cauliflower. 

In a bowl, beat the eggs and add the salt, pepper, and parsley. Pour on top of the vegetables, and cover the pan with a lid. 

Let cook on a low flame until the egg is solid on top. Lift onto a plate with a very large spatula. Top with parmesan cheese. 

Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Simple Flower Crown

My sister in law got married in June and asked me what I thought about a flower hairpiece. She sent me an idea on what she wanted for her hair and after some research...I figured I could probably make one!


I biked over to Joann's and bought some floral tape and wire--and my very own wire cutters.  (I'll be the first to admit that I was probably a bit too geeked about owning my own pair of wire cutters. Something about a small pair of wire cutters really makes me feel prepared for whatever comes my way). Anyways--back to the crown.  I would have loved to make it out of fresh flowers/plants but I had to take it with me across 2200+ miles so I figured fake flowers were probably my best bet. I spent quite a while picking out the perfect assortment of small flowers and greens. When I got home, I laid everything out and started working! 

 I made the crown about 21 inches round. I slowly started cutting buds off of the branches and started taping them to the wire circle. I worked my way around the circle, as the picture below shows, until it was all the way covered. Then I used some floral wire to secure additional pieces in any empty spots.


It took a while but it was a really nice project to work on. And she looked so gorgeous with it on! I felt so honored to have her wear something I made on her wedding day!