Yesterday was mine and Bryan’s 4 year anniversary. And of course I got the brilliant idea to do something adorable for it on Tuesday…which gave me 4 days to prepare. However, I managed to pull it off. I put together a cute little dining area on my balcony which was previously sans furniture. The only thing out there was my recycling. I took this photo after I bought the furniture this week, but before I did anything else to it.
So I went to town with some simple and fast decorating ideas. It helps tremendously that I have my own craft room now or I would not have been able to do any of this. one thing I knew I wanted for my furniture was seat cushions. So guess what I was doing until 11pm Friday night? Sewing seat cushions. BUT they turned out awesome. I really like the fabric I picked out. And considering sewing isn’t my forte when it comes to crafts, and the fact that I just kind of winged this, I’d say I’m pretty damn proud of them.
And then came the complete picture. Before I show it to you though, here’s some background info. I was cooking dinner while Bryan went to a nearby Chinese place to pick up rice, (because I burnt the rice), trying to get all dressed up, AND set up this table all at the same time…so it’s a miracle I even got a picture of it before we sat down to eat.
A few little details:
1) I dressed up some dollar store candle holders with ribbon and lace (and cute little tags with the number 4 on them).
2) I made little menus just for the full restaurant effect.
That’s about it. It was a pretty calm anniversary, with the exception of the moment of panic when I burned the rice. Seriously though, if you know me, you know that SOMETHING had to go wrong with this plan. I’m just glad Bryan knew exactly what to do to fix it.
I believe the first official day of fall is tomorrow. But I am in bed slightly under the weather, sipping a pumpkin smoothie this morning, and what says fall more than pumpkin flavored things and colds?
Also I had quite the fall-tastic weekend. I got carried away a bit since it was still in the upper 80s this weekend. But I just couldn’t wait any longer! I made pumpkin french toast on Saturday morning.
As far as french toast goes, the only kind I ever usually eat is our family recipe of cheesy french toast – that’s right it’s basically just french toast meets grilled cheese. Sounds weird but it’s incredible. So when I make this cheesy french toast, I’ve always used a bit more milk than is required because I don’t like eggs so I don’t like my french toast to taste like them. I did add more milk to this recipe but not enough more because they were still pretty eggy. Aside from that though, the pumpkin flavor was so good mixed with the maple syrup.
After the french toast I had to finish off the can of pumpkin so I made muffins. They aren’t that fantastic. But they make for a good little snack when popped in the microwave for 20 seconds.
After I spent the morning baking, I went to Food Lion for some beer to bring to tailgating. I ended up getting a mix-n-match six pack of all different fall flavored beers. Yea, like I said, I got a little carried away. But again…what says fall more than football and pumpkin beer?
Failure. That’s right. C is for failure. Because this is all I got.
Tried to learn panning. It’s hard. You have to pan at exactly the right speed for your subject to be in focus and this is the best I got. It happened to be the one shot I got where the cab wasn’t entirely in the frame too.
2) Candy Corn
Generic. Easy. But delicious-looking.
A pretty church around the corner from the hotel I was at in Chicago.
View from the John Hancock building. Didn’t use a ttripod since I wasn’t going to carry it around with me and awkwardly set it up between tables of people…but still pretty decent.
This one is definitely better than any generic photo of the sky with puffy white clouds would be. Since it was taken from an airplane. At sunrise. I just got lucky there.
I’ll do better next time. I was just flat out lazy for this one. I didn’t make as much time for it and some of my photo-ops were bad enough that I couldn’t even use any pictures from them. I’ll just keep pluggin’ along though.
This is long overdue since I made these last weekend, but I’ve been in Chicago all week (post on that will follow shortly). These were pretty yummy. I had lots of blueberries to use up before my trip so they wouldn’t go bad. And since I love making pancakes on the weekends I tried blueberry this time. I followed that recipe except for the lemon…because I didn’t have any lemons.
I also nailed this pour shot here without too much trial and error.
Bananas were 20% off on SavingStar this week and since I go through bananas so fast and always like to have some in the freezer or some ripe ones to bake with I bought about 6 lbs of them. So I made these little guys. I made them before but didn’t have any great pictures of them.
This time I made a couple changes – used peanut butter instead of cashew butter. And I added a little milk to the chocolate so it was more runny and would stick to the bananas better.
Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 2 sandwiches Calories: 95, Total Fat: 5.7g, Sat Fat: 1.3g, Sodium:42mg, Carbs: 10.6g, Sugars: 5.9g, Protein: 2.4g
So this meal was a winner.
Baked Brown Sugar Chicken
Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
I prepped the chicken in the morning and put in a freezer bag in the fridge for the day. I halved the recipe but I should not have halved the spices…I barely had enough and the chicken was rather boring compared to the expectations I had for it. More of the spice mixture would probably have fixed that problem though
The cauliflower mac and cheese was a small challenge for a side dish. But with how easy the chicken was this wasn’t a problem. And the effort was definitely worth it. All the deliciousness of mac and cheese but with a vegetable bonus.
So I found a new really cool thing thanks to my Mom. Glass etching! It looks like it would be involved and difficult, but it’s actually the easiest thing ever. If you’re like me and already have a silhouette machine and use vinyl for various other craft projects, the only other thing you need is glass etching cream (which is expensive, but that’s what coupons or Moms are good for), and a paint brush.
Here are the steps I followed (sorry I didn’t get pictures of all of them)
1. Cut your design you wish to etch out of vinyl. I don’t think it really matters what kind. You will be using it as a stencil.
2. Weed out the parts of vinyl that you DO want etched. Remember, it’s a stencil.
3. Place the vinyl on the surface you’re etching. Paint the etching cream on over it. According to my mom you have to really glob it on there.
4. After a short period of time rinse off the etching cream (or put it back in the container with your paintbrush to be reused…supposedly you can do that). Then take off your vinyl and admire your work of art.
And now that I’ve done these bottles I’m trying to find other things I want to etch because it’s so cool.