Monday, January 31, 2011


Hubby and I tried a new restaurant a few weeks ago because of my new years resolution.  We had been meaning to try this Mediterranean restaurant since it opened last year.  Peanut Butter loves hummus so we ordered it and it was AMAZING.  So now I am obsessed with trying to replicate it.  But first...

Say hello to my new friend!!! I have been wanting to get a food processor for a while and we finally got one!! I love it!!!! I was using the blender instead, but let me just say that me and my blender did not make good hummus.  In fact this is the first hummus I have made that was not thrown out.  The other hummus fails were pretty gross.  My Hubby is so sweet that he will say it is OK and eat it anyway, so I usually throw it out so he doesn't feel like he has to eat it.  

While we enjoying the amazing hummus, I figured out what was wrong with my hummus:  Texture.  My hummus was very chunky and garlicky and this was smooth a little smoky and the olive oil and paprika on the top was sublime. 

I also tried using dried chick peas and soaking them over night, and cooking them for an hour and a half and then finally making hummus.  I am never doing that again.  UGH so much work!!! And that hummus wasn't as smooth as when I used canned chickpeas.  Maybe I did something wrong?

 I want to experiment with other flavors.  Our grocery store has roasted red pepper and chipotle hummus.  I really would like to make those too!  I sliced up some cucumber to go with my hummus snack.  I was trying to make a healthy choice and it was fresh and delicious.  I can feel a new snack routine happening for me and PB!

Printable Recipe
Hummus- recipe by me
1 25 oz can chickpeas plus 1/2 of the liquid from the can
3 T tahini paste
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1 T cumin
1/2 tsp paprika (plus more for serving)
4 T good olive oil for serving

Place chickpeas, liquid, tahini paste, lemon juice, garlic, salt, cumin, and paprika in your food processor.  Blend until very smooth.  Spoon into serving bowl and top with olive oil and a few sprinkles of paprika.  Refrigerate before serving. Serve with pita chips or veggies.  You can even put it in a wrap with chicken or on a burger.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Orange Platter

Here is my orange platter that sits on my shelves behind this vase my MIL picked up for me.  The platter is from IKEA.  I got it a few years ago.  Confession: I have never used it as a platter.  It has always sat behind something on a shelf.  

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Reorganize 2011: Spice Cabinet

My spice cabinet before.  It was getting frustrating to cook. I was always knocking spices over and out of the cabinet when I would try to look at the labels behind the bottles.  There were some spices in there that we never use and some were very old, like I got them from my Mom when she moved... in 2002.  yikes!!

So I emptied the cabinet, threw out the old spices and vacuumed.  Then I got out my little friend...

My label maker.  I labeled the tops of every bottle.


It is so much easier to cook now. I also labeled the shelves into categories so when Hubby cooks, he knows where to put them back.  This only took about a half hour and I watched Oprah while I labeled everything.  

Do you have spices that are older than 6 months? How about from 2002? Maybe it's time to get your spices together :)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Card Swap

Remember the sympathy cards I made for my card swap? Well, we had our swap last week with a potluck and it was a fabulous night out.  Here are the cards I got!

Now I have a great selection of cards!! I can't wait to do the swap again.  Some people wanted to do it every 2 months and others, including me, every 6 months.  So in 6 months I'll be making more cards and swapping again!  

Friday, January 21, 2011

Orange Stools

Hubby got me these fabulous stools for Christmas. They are perfect when we need extra seating or as a side table. He always finds the neatest and orangest things for me.  Happy Orange Friday!!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Reorganize 2011: Master Closet

This weekend Hubby and I carved out some time and got our closet in shape.  

ACK!!! The before, what a disaster!!!

My Mom, the clutter shark, says to empty a space completely and clean it and start fresh.  Growing up when it was time to clean our rooms out she would empty every drawer, shelf and surface into a pile on the floor and we started from scratch.  So we did the big dump!

Here is the entire contents of our closet on our bed. And...

The closet all emptied, vacuumed and dusted!

We started with Hubby's clothes and he made hard decisions and got rid of clothes and put things away nicely. When his side was done, he went to do some work and I started trying on ALL my clothes.  I was realistic, I got rid of work clothes that I know I won't wear anymore.  If I didn't like the way something fit, I got rid of it.  I can now say with confidence that everything in my closet fits!  I even found some tops I forgot about.  All the clothes that we were going to donate....
...I chucked over the railing into the foyer. That was my favorite part :)

22 bags later!!

All that work was worth it.  It was exhausting trying on all those clothes but now my closet is heavenly!!

Everything has a place and it is much easier getting dressed in the morning!
Hopefully this inspires you to get your closet whipped into shape!  

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sympathy Cards for Card Swap

I am in a card swap with a bunch of ladies from my MOMS club. 
I finally finished them all, all 18 of them!!

 We all signed up for the type of card we were going to make.  I chose sympathy.  I knew I wanted to make these cards that I saw during Celebrating Mom on Made.  I found some soothing fabric but wanted to add some text to the front. Then I saw a tutorial on How About Orange for transferring images from paper to fabric using gel medium.  I had some gel medium and a laser printer so I decided to try it, and It was very easy!

After all the word patches were cut out I sewed them on top.  There were a lot of steps to these cards, but I spread it out over a few days so it didn't feel like work, it was fun.  I can't wait to see what the other ladies make!! I'll be sure to post some pics!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Orange in the Snow

Happy Orange Friday!! This was taken last Friday.  We had a little snowstorm.  Just enough to go for a walk and sled home.  Peanut Butter has an orange jacket.  I got it for $6 last year on clearance, and it came with a shirt and pair of pants! I am hoping to score a great deal like that this year.  Of course his sled has to be orange too.  Until he can tell me what color he wants, it is all going to be orange!!

Peanut Butter wanted to go out twice last week.  When Hubby went out to shovel PB wanted to go too.  So I got his orange shovel and he helped.  I think by next year he might be able to do our walkway!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Nursing Cover Tutorial

Here it is!  I promised to write up a tutorial after I teased you with the baby shower gift I made.  This makes a great gift to anyone expecting a baby.  I made a few for myself when I was pregnant.  They make nursing so much more comfortable.

Nursing Cover 
You need:
1 yard of fabric
1 1/3 yard woven interfacing
15 inches of wired boning
2 D-rings

Cut fabric
36" wide X 24" long- for the main part of the cover (cut interfacing the same size, you will have to piece it together)
2.5" wide X 29 " long- for the long strap
2.5 wide  X 7" long- for the short strap

1.  Iron the interfacing on to the fabric.
2.  Roll the edges under and pin the 2 sides and bottom.

3. On the top edge roll the fabric under just as you did on the sides but place the boning in the center and roll the fabric around it and pin.
(make sure the boning is centered and completely covered)
Sew around the whole piece.

 5.  Iron and pin the long strap.  Iron the piece of fabric in half, then fold the edges in and iron and pin. Sew down both sides.

 6.  Repeat with the short strap.

7.  Pin the straps to the top right where the boning ends.

8.  Sew straps.  I made 2 sewing lines and went back and forth a few times.

9.  Attach the D-rings to the short strap.
(sew some stitches as close as you can to the D-rings so the strap doesn't slip out.)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Child's Apron and Chef's hat

Peanut Butter's friend had her 2nd birthday party this weekend.  I wanted to make her  something fun so she could help her Mommy in the kitchen.  I followed this pattern from Homespun-Threads.  I used her size guide for the apron but changed the pocket and followed her fantastic directions for the hat. It was so easy.  I got to use my gather stitch again.  I love all the projects I have been making lately, I am really learning a lot. 

I asked PB to try on the hat and apron.  He cried, but I took pics anyway :) He was happy to put the apron on but I think it was the hat that made him sad.  My favorite part is the yummy fabric.  I am craving cupcakes now!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Reorganize 2011: The List

Today I made a list of everything I want to get done under my New Year's Resolution to reorganize the house. It is quite a list. I think that if you are going to tackle the whole house it helps to break it down into rooms. My tip is to be very specific with your line items so there is something to cross off after you complete a task. Saying clean out clothes might take a few days, so I break it down to drawers and closet. This means if I am feeling really motivated I can tackle the whole closet and If I am feeling lazy I can do a few drawers and still get to cross something off the list.

So this is going to be my nap time adventure for the next 2 months. Hopefully I get to cross a few things off this weekend, like taking down the tree. But I don't plan on cleaning during every nap time, I need time to be crafty too :)

I'll post some before and afters and give you some tips that I learned from the clutter shark (my mom) along the way.

New Years Resolution #1
Reorganize the house from top to bottom by Peanut Butter’s Birthday (March)

Take down Christmas  (completed 1/7)
Take down Christmas tree
Take down outside lights

Master Bedroom
put away floor piles
clean out all drawers in dressers
clean out night stands
clear and declutter shelves

Master Closet
Go through clothes and purses and purge
Install shoe shelves
Install purse shelf
reorganize clothes on shelves

Master Bathroom
Clean out cabinet and drawers
Medicine cabinet

Guest Room
Wash dust ruffle and redo

Laundry Closet
Declutter and reorganize shelf

Linen Closet
Declutter and Reorganize

Guest Bath
Clean and organize vanity

PB Room
Declutter room of baby stuff
Clean and redo closet

Get new sink and faucet installed
Declutter and Reorganize top cabinets
Declutter and Reorganize bottom cabinets
Declutter Drawers
Clean freezer
Clean Fridge
Clean and organize pantry

Butler’s Pantry
Install Cabinets and Countertop

Living room
Go through toys and organize
Declutter entertainment center
Declutter baskets in coffee table

Coat Closet
Get rid of old coats
Declutter shelves
get rid of shoes and organize
Redo closet shelves?

Leather treat furniture

Declutter downstairs
Declutter and redecorate ledge

Organize entertaining closet
craft area- purge and organize shelves and bins
toys- pack up some and organize others
storage areas continue to unpack, purge and organize
Hubby’s office organize
Get rid of the to donate books

Bring everything to donate
Get rid of Grill

Orange Cooking Utensils

This is my cooking utensil drawer.  It used to be all black when I opened it.  My fab Bro and SIL got us some orange cooking utensils for Christmas.  It is so fantastic opening that drawer to cook and seeing all that orange.  I swear the food tastes better when it is cooked with orange :) I know it's messy, but hey I haven't gotten to the kitchen part of my reorganizing resolution!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Molten Lava Cake

I have been wanting to make a lava cake for long time.  I finally got the motivation on New Year's Eve, I wanted to ring in the new year with a decadent dessert.  It was so good this is the only picture I could take before I devoured it.   It really was that good.  Also it was surprisingly easy, I don't know what I was afraid of.  The recipe makes 6 so we popped the other 4 unbaked in the fridge and baked them on demand the next couple of nights.  I am definitely making this the next time I have people over!
Molten Lava Cakes- Recipe by Paula Deen

6 (1-ounce) squares bittersweet chocolate
2 (1-ounce) squares semisweet chocolate (i used 4 oz 60% and 4 oz 70% Ghirardelli chocolate)
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 stick) butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 large eggs
3 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons orange liqueur (i didn't use this)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Grease 6 (6-ounce) custard cups. (I coated the greased cups with regular sugar) Melt the chocolates and butter in the microwave, or in a double boiler. Add the flour and sugar to chocolate mixture. Stir in the eggs and yolks until smooth. Stir in the vanilla and orange liqueur. Divide the batter evenly among the custard cups. Place in the oven and bake for 14 minutes. The edges should be firm but the center will be runny. Run a knife around the edges to loosen and invert onto dessert plates.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy New Year!

This is me and my wonderful hubby at midnight toasting with Kriek.

This weekend I have been thinking a lot about resolutions. There were a few years where I didn't make any and other years where I broke the ones I made within a few days.  Last year I came up with my only successful resolution, reorganizing my house.  I gave myself a deadline, Peanut Butter's birthday in March, and I completed it.  Hilariously my house now looks just as bad as it did last year at this time, maybe even worse.  My hubby travels a lot in the 4th quarter and I am a naturally messy person. I need someone to keep me in line or I can get really messy.  To be clear: messy, not dirty.

So this year I have 3 resolutions.  
1.  Reorganize the house from top to bottom by Peanut Butter's birthday.  My favorite part of this resolution is that my Mom, the clutter shark, will be back at the beginning of March. She will clutter shark my butt if it isn't almost all the way completed.  I like to save a little for her, she really likes to bust some clutter.  I started calling her the clutter shark because one time when she was visiting she was circling the mail pile on my counter for a few minutes.  She was actually walking around my island in a circle and then finally couldn't hold back anymore and attacked it like a shark.  She is one of a kind.

2.  Don't sabotage future Kris.  That means no saving dishes from dinner until tomorrow.  No leaving dry laundry in the dryer all day or overnight .  No eating a bunch of junk making future Kris' jeans tight.  (stupid past Kris ate a bunch of cookies in December and now my jeans are tight.)  The past few months I feel like I am treading water and not moving forward.  It is terrible feeling like you can never catch up, so that ends now.

3.  Try 8 new restaurants with my Hubby.  I know I can do this one.  Hubby and I have gotten into a rut.  Anyone who knows me knows my obsession with a taco restaurant nearby.  I go there at least once a week usually more. I always get the same thing and when I was pregnant I went there so much we joked that Peanut Butter was made out of tacos.  Part of this resolution is to get us to break our delicious routine but also to get me and my Hubby to plan more date nights this year.  Sometimes we are having so much fun with Peanut Butter we forget that it is important to make time for ourselves to have alone time as adults.  

So hopefully by putting this out here it will keep me accountable.  So far I haven't sabotaged future Kris, I am starting the organization today, and Hubby and I talked about restaurants we want to go to.  The next few weeks you will probably see some recipes and some organization and hopefully I start one of the two quilts I want to make before June.

Here is a toast to 2011 and to all of you for stopping by, Happy New Year!
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