Saturday, February 23, 2013

DIY Inspirational Wall Art

After a long day of school and work, or running late to make it on time, this is such an easy way for my roommates and I to remember to just breathe and smile. It's a free way to add a little sunshine in our home and it only takes about ten minutes.

One for our hallway...

& one for the living room
Not to mention, You'll feel good for reusing those old magazines instead of throwing them away!
Just remember to recycle the scraps and the pages you don't use!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Layered Banana Split Sundae

Hope everyone had a sweet Valentine's Day!
Mine was extra sweet with this fro-yo layered banana split sundae

I found these cute treat cups at Walmart for $0.98 for a pack of six.
Grab your favorite flavored frozen yogurt (they have frozen greek yogurt now, too!)
a banana, peanut butter, and your favorite candies for topping

A layer of Ben and Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie fro-yo
over a layer of bananas and M&M's candies
Add some peanut butter drizzle and another layer of bananas and greek yogurt
After your done layering, place them in the freezer for about 20 minutes to harden and set.
Top with whipped cream and enjoy!

 And just in case this post wasn't sweet enough, I thought I'd include this cupcake I had from Bubblecake in Roanoake, VA a while ago. My first cappuccino cupcake :)

Friday, February 15, 2013

DIY Sharpie Mug Alternative

You see the posts all over Pinterest: "DIY Sharpie mug... just write with sharpie, bake, and it stays!" Sounds to good to be true? That's because it is. I tested this method of ceramic design out in an older post and although it looked great, it didn't make it through two cleanings. Water and soap wiped the sharpie right off.

I used ceramics acrylic paint from Michael's as an alternative to the sharpie. It is designed for ceramics and will stay on after being washed (mine has lasted over 2 months with no wear!) The bottles are inexpensive, about $2, and I found cheap ceramics to paint at Target and goodwill.

I also used a stencil to paint the mustache on my bowl

Follow the directions on your paint bottle, but most need to be bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Make sure you place your ceramics in the over before you turn in on so that it warms while the oven is pre-heating. Then, set your timer for 30 minutes. When the timer goes off, turn off your oven but leave the ceramics in there to cool

My sister, Rachel, painted an octopus on her bowl from Target

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Valentine Candygram [13oz or less]

 As much as I love to make handmade cards, I couldn't help but to use the idea to mail packaged candy as a card. Since these boxes are under 13oz or less, you can send them off with first class postage! Find tons of other "happy mail" ideas here.

I bought the candy at Wal-Mart for 98 cents!

I found some scrap paper and cut it to match the size of the box. 
I tried to make mine look more like a postcard!
a glue stick held it on, but I'm going to cover it with packaging tape 
to keep it from ripping before shipping them off!

Happy early Valentine's Day!

Just a quick update:
I sent the candy grams yesterday without any problems
they both cost right around $2.50 (2.49 and 2.66 to be exact!)
the Twizzlers box had to use stamps as to not cover the address
and the lifesavers used a printed mailing stamp slapped right on the angled flap

Make sure you ask your clerk for Valentine's stamps for extra festiveness!
I forgot..oops :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Chicken and White Bean Soup

With cold wind, rain, and snow it's no wonder I've been craving soup! Except I hate the fact that canned soup has so much sodium, preservatives, and calories. Don't believe me? Just checkout this article on canned soup by Shape. However, not everyone has the luxury to make grandma's home-style chicken noodle soup from scratch. So, in the hour leading up to the Super Bowl Parker and I decided to kill some time and make this healthy alternative to canned soup. My inspiration came from MyRecipes but changed it up a little to simplify the process.

I used:
4 cups water
3 cups low- sodium chicken stock
1 cup diced chicken
2/3 cup uncooked orzo
1 can diced tomatoes (no salt added)
1 can cannellini beans
1 tsp white wine vinegar
garlic, onion, parsley,oregano
and black pepper to taste

Fill soup pot with water and stock and let heat. Meanwhile, open your cans (drain the beans, but not the tomatoes!) and dice your chicken. Parker had the ah-ha moment when he used a pizza roller to dice the chicken. It was so much easier that sitting there chopping it up with a knife. Give it a try and let me know what you think! Add chicken, beans, tomatoes, and spices into the pot and let it come to a boil. Add orzo and keep at a boil until orzo is cooked (about 9-10 minutes). Remove from heat and serve or store in Tupperware for later. Enjoy!