Thursday, August 20, 2015

Blueberry Orange Oatmeal Muffins - Win

I do love my muffins!

Now that I'm back to shift work and the kiddos are in daycare, I actually get a bit of time to do some large batch cooking. This time was some home made granola bars and muffins. Instead of going to my usual apple muffins, I decided to try something new. Plus I had an orange sitting around that needed to be used.

This is yet another solid recipe from Damn Delicious. I only made two variations, - using vanilla greek yogurt instead of plain, and I omitted the vanilla extract (mostly cause I didn't have any) and using just regular sugar instead of Turbinado. Just as described these are a hearty and tasty muffin, and the smell simply delicious. I mean who doesn't love the smell of orange zest?

The batch whipped up quickly and the keep very well. The only difference is that the recipe states that it makes 11 muffins but I came out with 14. Maybe I just make mine a bit smaller, but keep that in mind when trying this one out.

These muffins are perfect for breakfast or snacks, and will definitely end up in our lunch bags as a tasty and healthy treat.


Friday, August 14, 2015

Skinny Sofa Table - Win!

We are slowly turning our new house into a home. It seems like it will take forever, especially now since I'm back to work and 12 hour shifts put a damper on getting stuff done around the house. One week in and it looks like a dust bomb went off in here.


Two of our newest acquisitions to our House to Home Project is a fridge and a pull out couch. The fridge was unplanned. The previous one was making horrible banging noises that were so loud my hubby thought someone was breaking into the house, while freezing half my food and rotting the rest. The POS had to go. 
The couch was a necessary purchase. This house is actually a bit of a downsize for us, going from four bedrooms to three, but since we live significantly closer to family now, having an extra bedroom for visits isn't necessary. But having a spare bed where family and friends can crash is always nice.
With the layout of our new living room being smallish and a bit awkward, we needed to get creative with tables and lighting.
Especially with the lighting, since we have no idea what the switch in the living room actually does.

I came across this Pin from Always Never Done while randomly searching for home inspiration. It was the perfect solution for our problem and really cute too! And all for $25!

Uh, yah. Until my hubby got a hold of the project.

He has inherited his father's ability to take a simple and inexpensive project and turn it into a bank breaking monstrosity. Ok, I'm exaggerating. A bit. When the men in his family do this to these previously simple projects, they do turn out well, and maybe better then the original plan.

So I showed this little table to my hubby and said "wouldn't this be great for behind our new couch?" He agreed, and ventured off one day to the local supply store. I'll spare the details, but way too much money later we have an awesome looking table. So this is more of an 'inspired' pin then one we he actually followed to the letter.

Please excuse my horrid walkway and garden. We're getting it replaced next month!


So the plan went off the rails in a few ways.
One - we got stair case spindles instead of legs.
Two - he added additional supports between all four legs so the wobbly concerns from the original pin are not a problem here.
Three - my hubby decided to do a double top where he could build the table then mount the finished top onto the table and not leave any holes or filled marks.
More complicated? Yes. Still looks good? Yes.

Painting the legs was an absolute pain. If you can get them pre-painted, do it. Or buy spray paint. Otherwise don't look to close at the table. We didn't worry too much since no one will really see the white parts. We also copped out on the stain and bought stain cloths. Worked like a charm! A quick coat of spray sealant for protection and it was done!

The whole table went together in an afternoon and was relatively easy according to my hubby, even with all his modifications. If you stuck to the original, it should be a breeze. With a few decorations and accessories, it's the perfect addition to our living room and doesn't take up a lot of space.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Oven Bacon - Win!

We have been doing Oven Bacon for so long that I totally forgot it was one of my original pins! I really can't believe it, it was such a good pin that it got integrated into our weekly lives so easily.

We have a tradition in our house that most Sundays my hubby cooks pancakes, bacon, and eggs for breakfast. The process used to take a ridiculous amount of time before a) we got a griddle and b) we discovered oven bacon. 
No more cooking in small batches and dealing with splatters or unevenly cooked bacon! Now your bacon can be cooked with minimal mess and ends up perfect every time!

The original pin was from Here. We've adjusted our method to baking at 425 because we like crispy bacon and it cuts on time a bit. Tinfoil is essential to minimize mess. This can easily be done on a standard cookie plan with a small edge, or anything you have that's similar. Cook time is 15-20 minutes depending on your temp, bacon thickness, and desired crispyness. I start checking it after about 10-12 minutes and monitor closely. 

Each piece is flat, crispy, and cooked evenly. 

Why didn't we think of this earlier! I want more bacon.