Sunday, July 28, 2013

You are Wonderful and Have Nothing to Prove, Just Be YOU!

While you are reading this, I'm at from the biggest women's blogger conference there is - Blogher13 via the magic of working a head of time and prescheduling. Isn't technology wonderful?

Based on how exhausted I've been after past conferences learning everything I can to be a better blogger, networking to bring you new information, and meeting as many of you in real life as I possibly can, my brain is guaranteed to be Silly Putty by the Sunday drove home. The only thing I'll be able to communicate effectively for the next couple of days is, "Fire bad. Tree pretty."


And of course talk and write in nothing but hideously, long run-on sentences.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Lavender Sugar Recipe

Lavender is the only plant that survived our clay garden soil disasters. Not only have my lavender bushes survived but they are now huge,  thriving bushes that attract the fattest bumble bees around. Yay!

My secret is to cut the lavender back as often as possible. Since I don't want my fresh cut lavender to go to waste, I'm always on the hunt for things to do with lavender. I use it to make lavender essential oil, to keep moths away in our closets, to make lavender sugar scrub, and now something I've been dying to try - use dried lavender in cooking and baking. Yes! You can eat lavender flowers!




The easiest way to cook with lavender is to make lavender infused sugar and use the lavender sugar in your favorite recipe. Lavender sugar adds a savory touch to my Scottish Shortbread and it looks like I spent big bucks and tons of time on something I already have on hand that I let sit until I remembered to use it.

How to Make Lavender Sugar

Monday, July 15, 2013

How to Make a Soda Pop Can Gift Tag

More often than I care to admit, I end up buying something because it is in an interesting bottle or container and I am more interested in repurposing the jar than eating the stuff in container.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this. It is kinda weird, I know.

That's how I ended up with this cool flip top pumpkin cider bottle (pumpkin spices mixed in apple juice) last fall. Sadly the drink wasn't all that but the empty bottles are worth keeping. I use one to hold olive oil from the bulk bottle in our pantry. The other bottle I put aside waiting for its special purpose.

Today is the day.

 I made homemade vanilla extract by crushing a vanilla bean, covering it in vodka, and letting it sit in a cool, dark place for several weeks as a lazy way frou frou foodie gift.  My vanilla extract is ready for gifting. It needs a fancy pants tag to dress up the bottle.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

16 Mason Jar Lid DIYs

I have a mason jar addiction. It started innocently enough. I had a cupboard full of empty mason jars after we ate the vegetables I canned from our tiny garden. The cupboard holding the empty canning jars in within arms reach of the kitchen counter while the cupboard holding the actual food storage containers is four steps to my left.

It was only a matter of time until my empty mason jar collection started to hold more than home canned food. Four steps to the left is a long row to hoe.





Canning jars also fill in for drinking glasses when we have a party. I hate buying one use disposable plastic cups! My guests think I'm being my quirky trendy self instead of being too cheap and too lazy to buy a bunch of reusable party cups and find a place to store them in my tiny house.

Monday, July 8, 2013

33 Picnic Food Recipes Including Allergy Free!

Husband and I are spending a lot of summer playing in our city parks with Lacey to help her with her fear issues. The more we take Lacey out and about to dog appropriate places, the more we socialize her and teach Lacey in a fun way that new experiences are not as scary as she thinks.

This means we are doing a lot more picnicking than we have in recent years. We’re getting tired of sandwiches and I’m a little stumped on what other picnic foods travel well and taste good after a sitting a cooler for a big chunk of the day.

I asked the smartest people I know, my Twitter and Facebook followers (you can follow me on Twitter here and follow me on Facebook here) for their favorite picnic food recipes. 

Pin this post for your next party!

Wow friends! You really know how to cook!


 9 Picnic Main Dishes





Monday, July 1, 2013

Awareness Bracelet Drink Charms

Sometimes Husband and I have a little drinking problem.

We can't tell whose drink is whose.

We do the "is that your drink or mine?" "Wait I think my drink is over here, isn't it?" "um, compare the glasses, I think I have a little less than you or not, I don't know" thing.

Now I know why wine glass charms are so popular.

Unfortunately, traditional wine glass charms aren't very helpful if you are drinking out of a bottle because there isn't anything you can attach the wine charm on. The same goes with stemless wine glasses which we also use as our everyday drinking glasses to save on cabinet space.