Wednesday, March 31, 2010

What's in a name?

Finally, it's PROJECT TIME!!

I wanted to find a sentimental way to give my married friends
a gift for their home that was something they would
actually want to have in their home!

Since I love anything with a monogram, last name or anything
using lettering - I thought I would paint a little sumthin' sumthin'...

This one is for my wonderful friend Miranda for her birthday!





If you want to make one for yourself
(or a wonderful friend) here's how:

Get a piece of wood - any size you want works fine.
Sand the piece of wood and dust off sanded remnants.
Paint the piece black (I just used regular ol' acrylic paint).

Let it dry...

Sand edges a bit to give it that antique look.
Print out the letters needed in the font you like on the computer.
Place them on the wood and trace the outline with
a ballpoint pen, pressing down a bit.

Paint the traced letters with ivory acrylic paint (you'll probably
need to go over it twice to get the solid ivory color.

Let it dry...

Then use a wood stain (I use Minwax Provincial 211) and go
over the entire front of the piece with the stain.

Let it dry and wipe it off!

Hope everyone enjoys this fun project that gives a
personal touch to gifts for your friends and family :)




Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Three pounds down...

EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!
That's right!  You heard it!

I'VE LOST 3 POUNDS!!!

I wasn't going to post about this...
I mean, you know how a woman's weight fluctuates.

But I am now at 146 lbs!!! :)

Keep the positive energy and thoughts coming my way!

I went to spin class last night and I plan
on going again on Thursday.

I'll be taking my little Maddie on a walk when
I get home from work which is something
that is desparately overdue.

Hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful spring weather!
I know I am!



Sunday, March 28, 2010

Recipe: Shrimp & Grits!

I have been craving some shrimp and grits lately!
So, I decided to compile a few recipes for them into one!

The first recipe is adapted from "Five Ingredient Fix"
host Claire Robinson's Stone-Ground Grits with Gruyere.

Instead of using Gruyere, I used extra sharp white cheddar cheese.
It's a lot easier to find in the stores and still has that
distinct cheese-y taste to it.

Ingredients:
1 cup grits (NOT the quick grits)
2 cups chicken stock, plus more if necessary
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup grated extra sharp white cheddar cheese
Salt & pepper

Directions for grits:
First, bring the chicken stock and the half-and-half to
 a boil, over high heat in a medium pan.


Slowly whisk in the grits.




Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, until
thick and creamy (about 15 - 20 minutes).  If the grits get too
thick, stir in additional hot stock or water to loosen & thin.


Add the cheese and stir until cheese melts.


The shrimp portion of the recipe is from
a few recipes I just formed into one.

Ingredients:
2 Tablespoons butter
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 pound mild Italian sausage
1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled & deveined
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, drained

Directions:
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat.  Melt butter and
saute onion, garlic and green bell pepper until tender & translucent.





Add sausage.  When sausage has cooked, add shrimp and saute
for about 2 minutes.  Add white wine and diced tomatoes.


Bring to a boil, about 5 minutes.

Transfer to a serving dish and add the grits.  Mix together.


Enjoy!

And don't give in to the sweet faces your dog makes
while you're eating your dinner...


"I like shrimp and grits!"




"Please?  Pretty please?"




"Fine...then I'll just lay here and sulk!"




Don't feel too bad for her...she just got a milk bone :)

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!



Saturday, March 27, 2010

Annette Tatum Home Collection Giveaway!!

Head on over to Dreamy Whites blog to enter for a chance
to win an Annette Tatum Queen Duvet!!!

Her home collections is stunning!
Dreamy Whites is giving you 3 chances to win!
So, hurry on over before the giveaway closes on April 2nd!

And check out the rest of Dreamy Whites blog...it is gorgeous!



TGIF!!! Even though I have to work tomorrow...

I'm an event coordinator (have I told you that?) and
it requires a lot of additional hours at the office
at odd times and lots of weekends.

But the bonus is that once in a while I get events
where I get to go check on things....and SHOP!

I have to admit, it was quite difficult to stick
with my "No buying clothing until I lose 10 lbs rule"...
But I did it!  And I'm pretty proud of myself :)

I did buy this great travel bag to put all my toiletries in:

(It looks way bigger in this picture than it really is!)

I always have the problem when I travel I'll have 3 separate
little bags with all my toiletries in them (makeup, shampoo,
hairdryer, etc...) and I'm having to lug them all to the bathroom.

Well, not anymore kiddos!!
(And a bonus?  The inside of the bag is a pretty coral color!)

On to decorating...I'm on a decorating kick!

I've been visiting the Southern Living website
and looking for decorating ideas.

Do you ever visit their website?

If you love light, airy rooms with neautrals and
splashes of color along with creative ideas...
You'll LOVE their website and magazine!

Here are a few pictures that inspire me...


I am dying to make a fabric headboard and Kate from
Centsational Girl made one and was nice enough to share
the tutorial with everyone!  Check it out here!


Aren't these colors spectacular?!?!


I love this tablescape for Easter...


And these place cards are right up my alley!


I love the colors in this floral arrangement.  Nothing brightens up a
room and adds a dose of femininity like a fresh bouquet of flowers...



I think this is such a sweet baby room for those people
who don't want gender specific decor...I gotta say, I love it!


So I'd love to know...
What inspires your decorating ideas?
What kind of style do you have?

P.S. - I have TWO great projects I've completed to show you.
And I'm super excited about it!  :)



Wednesday, March 24, 2010

One of those days...

So, it's only 9:30 in the morning and it's already
one of those days...

I burnt myself on the straightener, spilled milk all over
me (had to change clothes), tripped going out the door,
then tripped going down the stairs...

While driving a folder with papers in it slid across the
seat and went everywhere, was late for work, and realized
"Dang it...I left my cell phone at home!"


THANK GOODNESS FOR MARGARITAS TONIGHT!!



Typewriter Art

I saw this little beauty (vintage key art on the wall) on the
Pottery Barn website and longed for it...


But paying almost $400 for it was out of the question.
So, what's a girl to do?
Look for a way to make it herself!

I started looking back at some of the blog archives of the blogs
I already followed.  When I found the tutorial to make my own on
Susie Harris's blog I was ecstatic!
I knew I liked her ;)

So, I just followed Susie's simple step-by-step tutorial here and...


LOVELY!

I switched up the type of font used because I
wanted more of a typewriter style.
You can do whatever font tickles your fancy!


I hung mine on the wall in my bedroom above my desk...


Susie also posted a reverse of the colors for
this project which you can see here.

It's fun to see how a plain piece of 2' x 2' wood from Lowe's
can turn into a beautiful homemade statement in your home.

I hope everyone is inspired to make a homemade statement in
their home, whether its this project or another :)




Monday, March 22, 2010

Little of this, little of that

My third spin class was tonight and I must say I am
becoming more and more addicted!
I feel so refreshed after such an intense work out!
I mean who couldn't work it out while listening
to Pearl Jam and the Rolling Stones?!?!

Anyway, I have made a vow to myself that I will not buy
any clothing (excluding shoes & accessories) until I lose 10 lbs.
Ya hear that, Mom?
That's right.  I will NOT buy any clothing until
those "L" "B's" are long gone!

But since I can buy shoes, I bought these babies yesterday...
They were only $19.99 at Target!!
I have to admit though, my friend Miranda had them first.
They looked so darling on her feet I had to scoop them up for myself!
They have them in several colors, too!

I just wish it would stop raining/snowing long
enough here for me to wear them!

While we're talking about Target I have to say I am
in LOVE with their Liberty of London line!

I mean just look at this gorgeous bedding...

(click here to view on Target's website)

And what about these mixing bowls??

ADORABLE!


And even though I'm not purchasing any
clothing it's still nice to look...


And this sweet little number has darling pleats...




Once the first 10 lbs are gone I may just have to make a trip to Target!

On another note, I've been wanting to change things up in my bedroom.
You know, add some details and switch up some things...

I think the small details make all the difference.
Like these sweetly trimmed pillowcases by Martha Stewart...

I will definitely be trying this soon!

I already have a mantle as my headboard and I think the
next step will be to put fabric in the empty space like this...


(click here to get the tutorial from Martha Stewart online)

I'm also wanting to add some soft details to my bathroom.
I have some ideas in mind already and hopefully I can get some of those
done in the next few weeks so I can share pictures with you all!

The next few pictures are just some pictures from Martha that I love...
(yeah, we're on a first name basis)







It looks like I'll be busy with my sewing machine
and all this inspiration for the next few weeks!

Hope everyone has a wonderful rest of their week :)




Sunday, March 21, 2010

Fantastic Weekend

What a great weekend!
Bowling with friends on Friday and then a hike on Saturday!

Here's a few pictures of our hike...


My dog Maddie on her first hike


She was more into the hike than I was, haha!


The view from the top


Maddie and Me


Another view from the top


End of the hike!  Time to load up!


Maddie smelled...so it was time for a bath!


She HATES baths.


But apparently she decided to just lay there
even after the bath was over!

It was a FANTASTIC weekend!!!
I need more weekends like this...minus the dog bath :)

Hope everyone had just as good of a weekend as I did!