Saturday, June 15, 2013

Strange Thing

Ernie is our favorite dog in the world, most likely because he's our "fur-son".   He does the funniest things and makes us laugh every day.  Ernie brings a sense of adventure, a little laziness and lots of love.   A while back, he began sitting on the step from the house to the patio, with his front paws on ground level and his rear on the step.  This started as a morning-only routine after he finished his breakfast, but has since become more regular.  When we catch him sitting this way, we can't help but laugh!  It's one of his favorite "perches".

He makes us laugh...

What does your pet or favorite furry friend do that makes you laugh?

Friday, June 14, 2013

DIY: Flower display

Azaleas & Chives in re-purposed honey container
Each year, the first weekend of May marks the all so - famous 93 year tradition of the Wenatchee Apple Blossom Festival in North Central Washington.  Just about every community/town in the area has their own (fill in the blank) Blossom Festival in the spring.  We love joining in the unique, small town traditions and celebrations.

This year after the Grand Parade, we had some friends over for a cook out.  I decided since it was the inaugural 2013 patio party,  I wanted to add a special touch to the celebration.  I had several empty honey containers in my craft room and fresh flowers blooming in the back yard.  Both are quite happy in my opinion, so I thought, what better combination to use for FREE decor?!  :)

I cleaned the honey bears well and prepared them for paint.  I simply sprayed them with white spray paint and let them dry overnight.  The next morning I cut some flowers, which I believe are azalea's and combined them with some chives (we have an overabundance of chives!) and set them out near the food line and on the table we ate around.  I absolutely loved the color and clean look of the flower display!  If you try this at home, please let me know!  I'd love to see what you come up with.

Happy Friday to you all!

Creative Cooking: Chicken Spinach Noodle Mix-up

Living and cooking on a budget can be a bummer at times, but if you choose to be creative and have fun, sometimes a made-up recipe can be fun!  In this case, when I stepped into the kitchen, I didn't have an exact plan of what I would be cooking.  I browsed through the pantry and freezer to see what I could use and combine.  I am a bargain hunter, so when I find a good sale, I stock up.  Later on I may have "too much" in stock, so I pull things together and combine them.  :)

In this case I surprised myself and my husband with this recipe.  We wrote down all the ingredients and recorded cooking times and methods and came up with a fun name, or so we think.  It will be a "favorite" in our family recipe book. 

Chicken Spinach Noodle Mix-up

Chicken Spinach Noodle Mix-up
Prep/Cooking Time: 15-20 minutes
Serves: 4


1 Cup frozen spinach or 2 cups fresh spinach
1 can Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 bag of Wide Egg Noodles
1 can of cooked mushrooms
2 Links al fresco of Roasted Pepper and Asiago Chicken Sausage
1/4 cup Pico de Gallo (this isn't necessary, we had it left over, so we decided to throw it in)
1/2 teaspoon of Mixed Garlic seasoning (of your choice)
Splash of Half & Half or your choice of milk substitute


In a medium sauce pan, cook noodles as directed.  While noodles are cooking combine all other ingredients in a separate pan on the stove top on Medium.  Continue stirring sauce until heated through and flavors seem to be combined (5-7 min).  After noodles are finished cooking, drain and combine with sauce.  Now, you're ready to eat! 

I hope you enjoy this recipe.  If you decide to make it at home, feel free to add or subtract ingredients!  I'd love to hear how your recipes turn out, or what your favorite "made-up" recipe is!  :)

As I said earlier, this was a complete experiment but we ended up loving it!


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Repurposed: Tired to Cheerful

Anyone who knows me, knows I love color!   If you walked into my home you'd see color splashed all over the place.  The project I'm sharing with you today was simple and fun, and originally intended to be functional, but ended up being for decoration only

Early this spring, I began thinking about our home garden and how we would mark off each vegetable or fruit.  I wanted to brighten it up before the fruits and veggies started appearing, with handmade garden markers. 

With the garden markers in mind, I headed down to my local Goodwill and started rumaging through the silverware and utensils section.  There was absolutely no silverware in stock that day, but I did come across some mismatched wooden spoons.  After some brainstorming, I decided I could figure out something for these tired, worn out wooden spoons.  I bought them for a whole $2.50 and immediately went to work.

First I washed and dried the spoons (You never know where they've been or how dirty they are).  Then I simply painted them with a variety of craft paint I had on hand.  I painted 2 coats on each spoon, front and back and then sprayed them with a clear varnish.  Remember at this time, I was still planning on using them as garden markers.  I let them dry and in the mean time had a couple friends come by and ask what I was going to use them for - I told them about my garden idea and also added that I really liked the color and cheer they brought to the kitchen.. so I was a little sad to put them outside.  I ended up keeping them indoors.  I'm so glad I did, because they add so much spirit and cheer to my kitchen!

Tired, Worn Out Spoons

Cheerful New Spoons

(Note: Once spoons have been painted and clear varnish has been added, they cannot be used for food purposes.)