SNOW ICE CREAM

We got hit with about 30 inches of snow yesterday, so I thought it would be a great time to share my snow ice cream recipe– it takes under 10 minutes to get together and is so so easy!

snow ice cream recipe - easy and homemade

Fill a medium mixing bowl with:

  • 5-6 cups loosely packed fresh, clean snow
  • 1 cup milk (whole is best)
  • 1/2 cup confectionary sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla (I have a great homemade vanilla recipe here!)
  • sprinkles!

Use a hand or stand mixer to combine it, it’ll become the consistency of frozen yogurt. Just take a taste and add more of any ingredients as desired (I had to add in more snow as I went), then transfer it into a freezer safe container and let is set for at least an hour.

easy home made snow ice cream in under 10 minutes

PS- You know what’s hard? Taking pictures of something that melts. 

It is SO GOOD! There’s a bazillion recipes out there, here’s some other things you can try:

  • substitute the confectionary and brown sugar with white granulated sugar
  • add in chocolate chips (or any other candy you like!)
  • put a little hot chocolate powder in there!
  • food coloring (I’m thinking pink on Valentine’s day would be adorable!)

Have you tried snow ice cream yet? What would you add in?

Creative Spark Link Party (#38!)

Every Wednesday FOUR  blogs, Weekend CraftMy Paper CrazePlease Excuse the Craftermath and Two Purple Couches, join together to feature projects, provide a place for bloggers … and this week I’m hopping on board too!

The Creative Spark Link Party is the perfect opportunity for YOU to share YOUR projects and gain inspiration from other crafters who are linking up their own! PLUS, as a bonus, when you enter your projects into the link up, you could have your project featured by one of our blogs!

link party DIYLast week’s most clicked on linky was this thrift store bulletin board makeover by Pennies into Pearls:

Bulletin-Board-Collage-PinterestMy favorite 3 link ups from last week are….

This super inspiring round up of DIY pillows and poufs:

poufs_pillows_littleredwindow-01This crazy amazing DIY console table (with build plans!):

diy console table build plans blueprint

This delicious and sparkly round up of treats:

Gold-Glitter-Dipped-Peanut-Butter-Oreos-i-love-my-disorganized-life

Wondering how to link up? Here’s some details for you:

rules for the link partyLink up HERE:

How to UNITE your MISMATCHED FURNITURE

A few weeks ago one of my friends messaged me some questions about how to paint furniture, and I offered to just do it for her. She had a few hand-me-down pieces of furniture that didn’t really match her style or each other.

how to unite mismatched furniture

The small chest on the left wasn’t in bad shape- just orangey and kind of country cottage which is not a style my friend liked. The nightstand on the right was in much worse shape, lots of worn peeling wax and stains on it. But, the curves on the sides of the larger one sort of went with the curves on the front of the smaller one and I knew with a little paint and some matching knobs they could almost pass for a set.

decoart americana art chalky finish paint

After removing and spackling the holes where the old knobs were I used my palm sander to to get smooth surfaces on each piece. Normally with chalky paint you don’t need to sand, but there was some peeling and rough texture going on that needed some attention.

I combined to Americana Decor chalky paint colors to get a nice medium gray, then just painted it on in 2 coats (no primer needed with chalky paint). Once painted I left it for a week to cure (even if paint is dry that doesn’t mean it has hardened). Then I added 2 pieces of wax to add to the durability (and advised my friend to let that cure for a week before use too).

Here they are all staged up in my house:

gray painted furniture with chalky paint

Ah! Aren’t they sooo sweet now? I love them, and the gray is matte and lovely.

Matching paint treatments and matching knobs make a huge world of difference.

chalky paint furniture update

What do you think? Any furniture painting in your future, or are you a wood purist?

I’d love to get into working with more wood refinishing, but sometimes things are just too far gone- and that little nightstand was definitely too far gone and then kicked 3 more times.

how to unite mismatched fu

Thanks for stopping by! Leave any thoughts or questions in the comments!

How to Beat the (dry, scratchy, forced air) Heat

In my last healthy living round up (here) I mentioned a body cream and oil I’d been using for my super dry skin, and they are awesome… but then we hit the dead of winter. I was literally waking up in the middle of the night because my legs were so painfully itchy. It got rough.

dry skin treatments

I threw it out to Facebookland to see if you all had any great tips and you totally nailed it.

dry skin remedies

If you’re feeling super dry, awful, and itchy, here’s what I’m doing now that may work for you too:

COCONUT OIL! I always forget about the magic of coconut oil, but I had a jar of it under the sink because occasionally I get on an oil pulling kick and it’s been working wonders. After I shower each night I put it on my legs while my skin is still damp and it absorbs within minutes. My inner thighs are the most dry- I’m talking heat rash dry- and this has totally fixed it.

- HUMIDIFIER! I also always forget that I have a humidifier, because I only use it when we catch the death flu. But it totally works to put moisture back in the air when the heat’s been pumping all day. Sometimes I even add a few drops of lavender essential oil to it, which is lovely and I sleep hard when I do that.

- DOVE! Dove products are seriously the best, I’ve been using them since high school. Recently Influenster sent me their new 48 hour spray on deodorant and it works great and dries instantly. I’ve also been using their dry shampoo so I don’t have to wash my hair every night (because the blowdrying is no good on my scalp right now)- I find the dry shampoo works best if I spray it on at night then brush it out and sleep on it, as opposed to trying to use it and style in the morning.

This weekend I’m planning to do this Maskcara too because my scalp psoriasis has been unbearable- have any of you tried it yet? What other remedies do you have?

Purging the Kitchen

January just seems to bring out the organization in everyone, and for me it’s no different. I’ve started the year by purging my kitchen– man, have I accumulated a lot of kitchen crap. My stuff, my mom’s old stuff, my Nonna’s old stuff, my great aunt’s old stuff. Stuff stuff stuff. There’s no need.

purge your kitchen, kitchen organization

In case you’re in the purging mood, here’s a solid list of nonsense you probably have in your kitchen too that you totally don’t need and should donate/trash/free yourself from:

1. Shot glasses. There are two grown adults in my house. There is no point in time where we will ever need to take shots with 45 of our closest friends, therefore we do not need to own 45 shot glasses.

I apologize to any of you that gifted us any of these shot glasses... but they've got to go.

I apologize to any of you that gifted us any of these shot glasses… but they’ve got to go.

2. Drinking glasses. There are white wine glasses, red wine glasses, margarita glasses, martini glasses, beer glasses, regular drinking glasses… the list goes on.. Goodbye to the 12 super huge drinking glasses my mom passed down to me 3 years ago and I’ve never touched!

I don't even have an even number of these.

I don’t even have an even number of these.

3. Chipped dishes. I have 5 separate dish sets: the green Ikea one that everyone has, the plastic ones to go with my plastic cups, the clear glass ones passed down from my great aunt, the fancy holiday ones also passed down from my great aunt, and the amber set I bought on auction because it was like $4. It’s safe to say that I can throw out the chipped ones and still have enough. And I’m going to bet you’re probably in the same boat.

This is what was left AFTER I threw out the chipped ones. I think we're going to be ok.

This is what was left AFTER I threw out the chipped ones. I think we’re going to be ok.

And switching gears a bit, let’s take a look at the baking cabinet.

  1.  Expired flavor packets. Perhaps 3 Thanskgivings ago I bought too many McCormick packets for brown gravy. And I don’t even like brown gravy. And apparently those packets expire. Trash!
  2. Expired spices. From that one time I bought cumin for that 1 recipe and I don’t even remember what that recipe was. Apparently spices have a shelf life too. Goodbye old spices!
  3. Balsamic Vinegar. I’m pretty sure you can’t keep the same bottle for 5 years after it’s been opened (can you tell we don’t use a lot of it??) Plus, we were gifted a new bottle for Christmas. Goodbye old vinegar!

And finally, the dreaded fridge.

  1. Scary Food Storage Container. Oh, old container, I don’t even know what’s in you. And I’m afraid to find out. So you’re just going right into the trash without ever being opened.
  2. Condiments. Ketchup, mustard, mayo, dressing… all of which we almost exclusively use only in the summer. Goodbye stinky old condiments!
  3. Red Sauce. There’s 2 of us, we never finish a whole jar of sauce before it kicks the bucket, but I always hope we might, so I save it. (PS- in an effort to not be so wasteful on this front I’ve started buying the smaller cans of sauce and doctoring them up myself.)

Are you in the purging mood? What’s some junk you’ve been hanging on to for no reason? :)

3 Super Easy Chicken Recipes

For the 4 years I lived at college I had a slice of cheese pizza, a grilled cheese sandwich, and a cookie brownie juuuuust about every night for dinner. (Thanks for that super expensive meal plan mom and dad, sorry I used it solely on carbs and cheese.)

I was not the girl pretending she wanted salad every night to avoid the freshman 15. I just danced off the freshman 15 with my roommates each night. We were a girly cliche. They made me wear pink. It was lovely.

ANYWAY. What I’m trying to say is that I really don’t require a lot of variety in my eating. Pizza and I are very happy together. Pasta is a great back up. I spent literally all of 2014 expanding my palate and learning what healthy eating is. Now, I buy organic when I can, I visit the farm in spring and summer months, I try not to put cheese and salt on everything. I actually eat vegetables. (I lost 14 pounds through just healthy eating and 30 minutes a day of exercising!!)

Learning how to eat healthy also requires learning how to cook new things, or learning how to cook the same thing in different ways. Therefore, I present to you, some really easy chicken recipes to help you shake things up a bit in the new year.

1. Hummus Crusted Chicken (by Gimme Some Oven).

hummus-crusted-chicken-4

(find the full recipe here)

I use vegetable hummus, and substitute the vegetable side the recipe recommends with couscous.  It’s very delicious and only takes 30 minutes to cook… which means I can prepare it, pop it in the oven, complete a T25 exercise routine, then eat it. Holler.

2. Moist & Tender Chicken Breasts (by The Kitchn)

Chicken-1

(find the full recipe here)

Chicken is often dry and sad. This chicken is moist and delicious. I didn’t have the right pan, but I used a skillet and a lid from another pan and stuffed some balled up paper towels in the spouts of my skillet. It worked perfect. Served with steamed white rice and green beans.

3. Rosemary Lemon Chicken (by No Recipe Required)

Rosemary Lemon Chicken Recipe

(full recipe here)

My friend Amy & I have been sending each other chicken recipes for a few weeks now- this one I haven’t tried yet but she says it’s delish and I trust her, so I’m going to make it this weekend and you should too. Amy says try it with 1/2 a lemon instead of a whole one (but I don’t know, Matt & I realllllly like lemon).

So there you go, for all of you with nice and healthy New Years Resolutions, here’s some new dishes to try with your old favorite go-to’s. :)

Easy, Creamy Tomato Soup

I posted this easy, creamy tomato soup recipe about 2 years ago and it has become an absolute staple at my house because it’s so easy and adaptable, so I thought I’d revisit it today with some more options of things to add in.

easy creamy tomato soup recipe

Food photographer I am not.

The bare bones of the recipe (for two people) is:

  •  1 can of diced or stewed tomatoes (sometimes I buy the Italian seasoned can, sometimes I grab the diced green chiles style)
  •  2 carrots diced (sometimes I just use a drained can of carrots for this one if I’m feeling lazy)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Seasonings to taste (basil, oregano, Adobo, salt, pepper, chili pepper… whatever)

Put all your ingredients together in the blender until mixed, then heat in the microwave and serve. SO EASY. SO QUICK. SO DELICIOUS.

I make this soup at least once a month, but it’s different every time. Here’s some other stuff I’ve thrown in:

  • Half an avocado (makes it super creamy!)
  • Shredded chicken
  • Diced potatoes (again, from the can if I’m feeling lazy)
  • Cheese! Mozzarella, parmesan, gruyere…
  • Minced garlic
  • Chives

This easy, creamy tomato soup is so perfect for a cold winter night. What else would you add in?