Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

One thing that we never seem to grow out of is enjoying to dress up in costume for Halloween. Well, dressing up in costume at any time is fun, but it's mostly indulged in during this time of the year. 

I love to dress up in costume, but I wasn't going to this year. But a last minute invitation to a costume party at a club sent me scrabbling to figure out what to wear. I recalled that when I was recently browsing on Pinterest, I came across a kid's Peacock costume which was absolutely adorable! The bulk of the costume was made up by a tutu with beautiful shades of blue, green, and purple tulle, and because I was intrigued by this photo, I looked up directions on how to make a homemade tutu. It was surprisingly easy! 

I waffled back and forth between whether to make a peacock tutu or try to come up with something else. But I couldn't get the peacock out of my head haha. So, I made a quick trip to Joanne's Fabric to buy some tulle, then ran back home to put my costume together in, oh, T minus 1 and 1/2 hours. It took a little more time to make than I wanted it to, but I was mooostly ready when my friend came to pick me up! We had a great time dancing the night away. And my costume turned out pretty dang well for being so last minute. :-)

For directions on making a tutu, check out this website here.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Falling for Fall

I love fall. The crisp, clean air that feels so delicious after the heat of high summer, the beauty of leaves changing color, and the Indian-summer days that keep the season from being too cold. Add colorful sweaters, fun jackets, boots, sweatshirts, and blankets to the mix as well as hot cocoa and lattes and you have the perfect time of year.

Besides the reasons I mentioned above, another reason that I love fall is the decorations! The possibilities are endless. Whether you’re into Halloween décor or the more traditional pumpkins and funny scarecrows, there’s fun to be had by all when decorating for this season.

Every year, one of the local farms near where we live hosts fun fall activities during October; when my husband and I, along with one of our friends, went this year, I pestered my husband to let me buy some of the mini pumpkins they had, because I was inspired to add a few new pieces to my fall décor. Then, I hightailed it over to Michaels to gather the rest of the supplies I had in mind for a vase arrangement as well as for a new wreath for our front door.

In the evening, D. (my husband) was out of the house at a Bible class, so I lit a candle, turned on some music, and had myself a nice little decorating party. I started with my pumpkins, placing them in a hurricane vase and adding flora and fauna until I was satisfied with the effect. Next, I put together my wreath (super excited by how it turned out!), and I finished by placing the extra flowers I’d bought in a little mason jar with glass stones. When D. came home, he asked if I was done decorating. I told him I was. For now. ;-)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

White Veggie Lasagna

When I was a kid, there was a veggie lasagna that we would eat sometimes at my parent’s work. It was so good; my mouth still waters thinking about it. Now, I don’t really like lasagna (apparently I take after my father, who also doesn’t like lasagna; my mother thinks we’re both crazy). In fact, the only recipe that I’ve made that I’ve enjoyed was for Lasagna Roll-Ups.

Until recently, that is.

I kept thinking about that veggie lasagna from my childhood, and so I set up a campaign to find a recipe that would mirror what I remembered. It took some time of searching online as I was pretty particular: must have carrots, no red sauce or mushrooms, easy to make….I’m only a little demanding haha. But I finally found the one! It looked perfect in the picture. And so, I bought the ingredients, fired up the stove and oven, mixed, boiled, simmered, compiled, and baked. And out came perfection. I know you can only judge by the pictures; but let me assure you, there was a house-rockin’ party goin’ on in my mouth. Yum!

Gather the ingredients:

     9 lasagna noodles
     2 eggs, beaten
     2 cups cottage cheese
     1 15 oz. carton ricotta cheese
     2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning (or similar)
     4 cloves garlic, minced
     2 tablespoons olive oil
     2 tablespoons flour
     1 teaspoon black pepper
     1-1/4 cups milk
     1 10 oz. package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
     1 10 oz. package frozen chopped broccoli, thawed and drained
     1 cup shredded carrot
     1 8 oz. package shredded mozzarella cheese

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine eggs, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, and Italian seasoning; set aside.

In a large skillet, cook garlic in hot oil for 1 minute. Stir in the flour and pepper; add milk all at once. Cook and stir until slightly thickened and bubbly (about 3-5 minutes). Remove from heat. Stir in the spinach, broccoli, and carrot.

To assemble, in a greased baking dish, layer 3 noodles. Spread with 1/3 of the cheese mixture, then 1/3 of the vegetable mixture. Sprinkle with 1/3 of the mozzarella. Repeat the layers twice. 

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until heated through. Let stand for 10 minutes before eating.

The finished product! It also makes great leftovers! For make-ahead directions (which I did), prepare as above through assembly; cover and chill for up to 48 hours. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 30 to 35 minutes or until heated through. Enjoy as before! :-)

Friday, October 19, 2012

Classically Rosie the Riveter

I love looking at vintage repurposed. Not that there’s very much of it going on in my décor or clothing. But I love admiring other people who reuse vintage things in unique or classically modern ways. This is one of my wanna-be moments. When I have a little more leeway in where I can decorate (instead of my little apartment), I’ll have to try some of what I have admired. For now, I’ll stick mostly to admiring.

One vintage look that I’ve admired for some time now is the handkerchief/bandana-tied-around-hair look. After doing some research, I discovered that the style I was picturing in my mind is associated with Rosie the Riveter, a cultural icon representing the American women who worked in factories during WWII.

I also found a great website dedicated to “pin up” style that had clear instructions, as well as a funny, but instructional video on how to tie a handkerchief/bandana around your hair. I was off and running!

I maybe became slightly obsessed once I figured out how to tie the bandana haha. I had to buy a bandana first, and when I got home, I immediately tried out my new-found skills. Success! I dolled up my makeup, put on some dangle pearl earrings, and I had my look. I liked it so much, I wore it Saturday, Sunday, and to work on Monday! Then I remembered “everything in moderation” and took a few days off. But still, I know how it’s done now, so it’s all forward from here!

Check out this website here that was my inspiration! Seriously, the video at the beginning is really really funny :-)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Bites of Yumminess

It seems all the rage right now to be making (and eating) energy/protein bites, or balls. I came across a recipe via Pinterest that looked intriguing; of course, I accidently closed out my browser before I saved the website or repined….boo. So I decided to Google protein bites. Goodness, were there lots of results! Most have a fairly similar recipe with slight deviations, and while I never did find the original one that I liked, I found one that would do.

I initially told my husband that I would make these bites for us to eat for breakfast. However, I've made them twice now, and they don't last longer than a day and a half (they really are that good. And that easy to eat haha)! If I’m going to be serious about these being our breakfast, I’m going to have to double or triple the recipe.

Energy Bites

Gather the ingredients:
     1 Cup Oatmeal
     1/2 Cup coconut flakes
     1/2 Cup ground flaxseed
     1/2 Cup peanut butter (or other nut butter)
     1/4 Cup honey
     1/2 Cup chocolate chips/raisins/dried
                    cranberries/whatever suits your fancy

Mix it all together until thoroughly blended. Chill in the fridge for 1/2 an hour. Roll into 1" balls. Store leftovers (if there are any!) in the fridge.

Sit back and enjoy! Mmm-mmm, good :-)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

It's a Beginning!

Welcome to my blog! My name is S. Elizabeth, and I’m a wanna-be. A wanna-be what, you may ask? Many things, actually. But before all that, here are a few things I’m not a wanna-be about. I’m a wife, a Christian, a daughter, sister, friend. I work in customer service by day, and my husband and I coordinate a Bible fellowship by night (evening, really). I’m a singer, and I sing with a Christian band. I love to laugh, I’m high maintenance (but my husband still loves me), and I love ideas. Which brings me to being a wanna-be. I want to be a lot of things, but here are some of the things at the top of my list.

I Wanna-Be a:
     o Homemaker
     o cook
     o writer
     o photographer
     o DIYer
     o early riser
     o sewer, crochet-er, general craft-maker
     o neat-freak
     o student

This is my journey to not just enjoy the ideas of these things, but to incorporate them into my daily (ok, maybe weekly or monthly is a better starting point for some of my list) life. We’re all wanna-be’s in one category or another. The question is, what are you gonna do about it? I say, let’s break the mold!