Thursday, August 30, 2012

F o o d i e : F r e e z e r J a m

Earlier this summer I made a whole supply of freezer jam! I absolutely love this stuff and its quite easy to make - no cooking required!
Just pick up a jar of of instant pectin, (it should even say it's for freezer jam on the bottle or pouch) You can find it along with all of the other canning supplies at your local grocery store. 
The classic recipe is on the bottle!

This time I made the classic strawberry with fresh fruit, but I also did some experimenting with frozen fruit and made raspberry-peach and raspberry-blackberry (this one was particularly good). I wouldn't recommend using frozen strawberries for this, however peaches hold up their texture quite well after being frozen. This is a great alternative to this recipe incase you get the urge to make some freezer jam in the middle of winter and fresh fruit is too pricey!

*Just a note - I use a blender to break down the fruit instead of mashing it. This is a big timesaver and gives a more consistent texture. Store your supply in the freezer for up to a year!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

G e r m a n y P a r t 4 : T h e D r i n k s

Nothing better than a Hefeweizen or a Latte macchiato... except maybe some Pfälzer Riesling... and don't even get me started on the Prosecco.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

C r a f t B r e a k : S t o r a g e S h e l f D I Y

My parents have had these wooden crates sitting around our house for several years. I was looking for an update for this little space in my apartment and was inspired by some of the hand-constructed side tables I have been seeing around the web (like this one). After sanding, we, or actually my dad, spray-painted the crates with a burnt orange color that coordinates with the color theme I have in my living room. I'm so happy with how they turned out! Functional, yet simple and cute!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

F o o d i e : L e t t u c e W r a p T a c o s

These taco wraps are a new favorite  - and super easy - meal I've been enjoying quite frequently. Basically you prepare tacos however you like and swap out tortilla shells for romaine lettuce leaves.
This is a great low carb - but very tasty - alternative to traditional tacos. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

T u e s d a y T u n e s : O f M o n s t e r s & M e n

"Dirty Paws" By Of Monsters and Men

Love, love, LOVE their new album "My Head is an Animal"

C r a f t B r e a k : S i m p l e S h a d o w B o x A r t

Here is a project that my mom made! She had the kids in her Kindergarten class paint butterflies with watercolors, then she cut them out, bent up the edges and placed them in a shadow box. I think it's quite a lovely and easily customizable project!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

G e r m a n y P a r t 3 : C a t h e d r a l

Here are a few snapshots from a Cathedral we visited in Worms, Germany.

Monday, August 6, 2012

C r a f t B r e a k : P o m P o m F l o w e r s

So, Grad School starts in a couple weeks (yikes) and with that comes a new job... well, still the same department and same amazing boss, but a new project! Soon, I officially get to change my job title to "Graduate Research Assistant" - instead of the old undergraduate title. AND I get my very own office!!!
It's basically a blank slate, and I do love a blank slate when it comes to adding a few of my very own design touches.  In all of the initial decorating excitement I picked out a few small posters to hangup and decided to make these pompom flowers to add a softer element to an otherwise typically hard and modular office space. 
These flowers are particularly easy to make (especially if you have one of those pink thingys in the first picture - if not follow this guide). Once the pompom is made, cut out a felt petal piece and make a small slit in the middle. Insert the floral wire stem with the loop going directly into the flower and through the felt piece.  I add some tacky glue to the loop at the end of the wire to make sure the stem is securely connected to the flower.  
Fill up a vase and enjoy!
I think they add a lovely touch of handmade whimsy to any space!

Friday, August 3, 2012

F o o d i e : B a k e d F e t a & G a r l i c

Okay, so this may not be the most appetizing looking food, but it sure is tasty.  If you like feta and garlic it doesn't get much better than this savory combo. 
To make: Preheat oven to 400(ish)
Drizzle olive oil in the bottom of an oven safe dish and add slices of feta
 Sprinkle some minced garlic on top and finish off with another drizzle of olive oil. 
Bake approximately 15 min or until until bubbly and garlic is golden brown. 
Enjoy on bread or crackers. 
Get ready for some intense garlic breath - so eat alone or make sure whomever you're with eats some too! - or just skip the garlic all together :)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

C r a f t B r e a k : G r a n n y S q u a r e B l a n k e t

Earlier this summer I decided I wanted to learn how to crochet granny squares. So, I taught myself how to make one and then of course the next logical step was for me to make an entire granny square blanket. 
Here is the progress so far! I have to make 99 squares total and then I have to figure out how to connect them all together.... let's see if it gets done by the beginning of fall!