Sunday, November 25, 2012

Week 18 Theme...

December is less than a week away, which means it's time to start getting into the Christmas spirit.

For this week's theme I am going to use a collaboration of Pinterest Pinspirations and create an Advent Calendar. My first Christmas Pinterest Pin, I'm exited!

I found an advent calendar pin that has a fun family activity for each day up until Christmas, instead of just a chocolate or candy cane each day. I am definitely going to work that into the design.

I'm looking forward to all the Holiday Season's Pinterest Challenges.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Mini Apple Pies

My Thanksgiving desserts had a theme: mini. I wanted to make individual, personal desserts. So along with my mini cheesecakes, I made mini apple pies. You can't have Thanksgiving without apple pie!

My Pinterest Pinspiration came from this Pinterest Pin. Recipe found here. 

Mini Apple Pie
- Eight cups of apples (I used 7 large granny smith apples, it was about 3lbs of apples)
- 12 Tbsp of flour 
- 1 1/2 cup of sugar
- 4 Teaspoons of cinnamon
- 1/4 - 1/2 tsp of nutmeg (I used in between the two)
- 4 Tbsp of chilled butter (Cut into 24 equal  pieces)
- 2 boxes of Pillsbury Pie Crust (chilled not frozen)

This recipe makes about 24 mini Apple Pies.

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Peel and Cut all the apples into 1/2 inch bits. Then mix in the flour, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Make sure all the apples are evenly coated.
3. Grease a cupcake pan, then roll out the pie crust and cut circles to cover the bottom of the cupcake pan. I had to try a bunch of different circle sizes, and still think mine were too small.
4. Next fill each lined pie crust cavity with the apple filling. Then put 1/24 of the chilled butter on top of each pie.
5. Roll out the remaining dough, to create a cover for each pie. I cut little circles.
6. Place in the 400 degrees preheated oven for 18-22 minutes, until golden brown.
7. Once cooled down, top with some ice cream and enjoy!

Everyone loved these mini Apple Pies, and there was much less of a clean-up with individual pies. The only problem is between peeling and cutting all the apples, and rolling out the dough a few times, these pies seemed to take forever. So they were very, very tasty, just pretty time consuming. It's a Pinterest Success, but I'm not sure if I will ever make these again.

Mini Cheesecakes

Thanksgiving was a huge success this year, mostly because I was only in charge of desserts. I have to thank Pinterest for my delicious desserts; without Pinterest my desserts would have been store bought from Publix.

The first Pinterest Pin I decided to make was Mini Cheesecakes. Here is my Pinterest Pinspiration for these amazing bite size snacks. Here is where the recipe is from.

Mini Cheesecakes
- Two 8-oz packages of cream cheese (softened to room temperature)
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- Three eggs
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice (I used an actual lemon, not from a bottle)
- Dash of lemon zest (I used about two pinches)
- Mini Nilla wafers (not reduced fat, the other recipe says they float, I just took their word for it)
- 1 can of pie filling (I used strawberry, but you can use whatever you want)

This recipe makes about 60 cheesecake bites.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix together, with an electric mixer, cream cheese (make sure it is room temperature, you can also microwave them for 10 seconds), sugar, eggs, vanilla, lemon juice and zest until smooth.
3. Line a mini cupcake pan with mini cupcake liners and place a mini Nilla wafer face-up inside each one.
4. Scoop cheesecake mixture onto wafers, filling the cup about 3/4 full. I found a tablespoon of the mixture was just about perfect.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
6. Refrigerate. Once chilled, scoop on pie filing on top of each mini cheesecake, then chill once more before serving.
7. Then enjoy!!!!

Theses were a huge success, everyone loved them and they were gone pretty quickly. I definitely will be making these again, they were quick, easy, and amazing! Pinterest Success!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Week 17 Theme...

Happy Thanksgiving!

Week 17 falls on Thanksgiving week; since it will be a busy week of traveling, spending time with loved ones, and shopping, I figured I would make this week an easy week. 

Even though I am almost 30 and have a family of my own, I still get to go to my Mom's and enjoy Thanksgiving dinner, with little or no hassle to me. I was only asked to bring dessert. Easy enough.

For this week's Pinterest Challenge I will be making two Thanksgiving desserts. Hopefully the recipes are as tasty as they look. 

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving! Be sure to eat lots of food!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Random Acts of Kindness

This past week Xander (my two year old) and I have been going around the community and performing random acts of kindness. This Pinterest Inspiration come from this blog. CLICK ME.

Our first random act of kindness was inspiration by the main Pinterest Pin, giving a little thank you to our mailman. Don't mind the super dirty and rusty mailbox, I like to think of it as vintage.

Our next random act of kindness was to place a few dollars around the kid's section of the Dollar Store (also an idea from the Blog). I put a $1.07 in Ziploc baggies to cover the tax of the toy too. I tried to put all the bills at eye level of a child, so it would be a fun find for a kid.

We also borrowed this random act of kindness from the Pinterest Pin. Xander and I delivered cookies to the Fire Station. This one was my favorite, more because we got to see their reaction. They were so thankful, they even let Xander see the Fire Truck and gave us a goodie bag with fire safety activity books.

Xander didn't really want to be away from Mommy, so he isn't too thrilled in this picture. But he LOVED the fire truck when I was with him.

We also went through the drive-thru at Starbucks and treated the car behind us to a coffee. Again, we didn't get to see their reaction, but the cashier sure seemed shocked with our random act of kindness.

Xander and I also deep cleaned my husband's car. This random act of kindness was for my husband, but I'm sure the community will appreciate the cleanliness driving around town.

This week was really fun, and I hope to continue to do more random acts of kindness throughout the holiday season. Another Pinterest Success!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Week 16 Theme...

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, this week I am celebrating with being thankful, and giving back to the community. I found an amazing Pinspiration, a women and her two kids (one was Xander) went around their community doing random acts of kindness. You can check her blog out here.

I have been looking forward to this week for a while, what better way to be thankful than to give back. I am going to capture as many photos as possible. I can't wait to share all the exciting acts of kindness Xander and I have planned this week. We are going to complete a few from the Pinterest Pin, and I have a couple others I want to do.

Be sure to check back for our week of giving thanks to our community.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Organizing the Pantry

This week has been a week of full force organization. I have even inspired friends of mine to full force organize this week. I'm glad I have started the organization movement. I think after this week, I'm OK with whatever messes are lurking in the other closets around my house. I mean if I organized everything, what would I do for the next 37 weeks?

Here are the scary before pictures of my pantry and spice\can food cabinet...

The major problem in the pantry were all the small appliances, but now that I have moved them to the extra space in the linen closet, things are looking up. And some of the food did get trashed because it was hella expired, so that cleared up some room too.

My Pinspiration for organizing my pantry come from these two pins...

It seems the main idea for organizing a pantry is canisters and bins. Since we are trying to get all the processed food out of the house and we are buying more whole foods, I love the canister idea. It's much nicer than the bags of rice, beans, nuts, oats, granola, etc. The only down fall is all those canisters can get pretty expensive. So I started with a small collection from Walmart and Ikea, but even then, the total was still about $40.00. With time I will add more, and I will add those nice wicker bins, instead of the plastic ones I found for a dollar at Walmart. I don't want have to move to the poor house and organize all over again. :P

Here is the final product of all my organizing hard work this week...

They don't look as nice as the Pinterest Pins, but they are more organized and much easier to find things. Really both the pantry and the cabinet just needed a little TLC. So another Pinterest Success!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Organizing the Linen Closet

I want to start this post by saying: PLEASE DO NOT JUDGE ME! I keep a pretty will kept house and every one thing has it's place. The problem is some of the places are behind close doors, which in my mind means it's fair game to be a hot mess. Normally I don't post my absurd messes all over the Internet, but for the good of the blog I will. But I repeat: PLEASE DO NOT JUDGE ME!

Here is a picture of the linen closet I am going to work my Pinterest Challenge magic on...
PLEASE DO NOT JUDGE ME! Please do not judge that there is an avalanche of blankets about to take it's next victim. Please do not judge that when I folded the sheets or towels, I just literally threw them in the closet where ever there was room. Please do not judge that my linen closet also holds an assortment of food. Okay now that we have that all covered, wait till you see what it looks like in the end.

I would love to tell you my linen closet looks just like my Pinspiration, but seriously who's closet looks this good.
This is pretty fancy stuff. I mean all their towels, sheets, blankets and toilet paper match. I have a more "realistic" closet. So while this was my Pinspiration, my real inspiration was to make me not want to cry every time I opened the closet door.

I did pin a few other helpful tips for organizing my linen closet. The best Pinterest Pin was to take the bed sheets and extra pillow case and store them in the pillow case of the set. I mean this is freaking genius. Then the entire set is together when you want to use them. 
Although mine doesn't look as neatly presented as this Pinterest Pin. I don't know how they put in a bed sheet, a fitted sheet, and a pillow case and still look that flat. This is what a more "realist" view of the same situation looks like.
Not as nice, but still does the job. And like I said it's an amazing idea!

Since I am organizing the pantry this week as well, I have found room in the pantry for the extra food I was hoarding in the linen closet. I did decide to keep bathroom products, utility products, and other nonperishable products in the linen closet. I found some bins at the dollar store, to organize those items. I was inspired by this Pinterest Pin...
I even found similar baskets, but in white. I just didn't think I needed to label the baskets, since you can just look and see there is a hodgepodge of items in each basket.

So after all these pins and a little organization, here is the final look of my linen closet...
Really I think just folding the towels made it look a 100% better. I did get two large storage tubs from Target ($12.99 each) to contain all of those blankets. And since I am cleaning the pantry, some of the appliances that were in there made it's way into this closet, since I had so much extra room. Even after that there is still extra room. 

So there you have it, another Pinterest Success. Next up with be the pantry and spice\can food cabinet.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Week 15 Theme...

With the Holidays coming, I thought I would try another week of organization. Get some rough areas in the house organized before Thanksgiving and Christmas come. I started my Pinterest Challenge with organizing one drawer in my bathroom. I have managed to keep that draw in order for over three months now.

This time around instead of one drawer, I am going to organize a linen closet, a pantry, and a cabinet for spices and canned goods. Talk about the mother load of messes! I have my work cut out for me this week; especially once you see what I am up against.

I am extremely embarrassed to share pictures of these closets and cabinets. There is a reason they have doors on them: to keep the mess contained. I will share without even straighting up a little, so check in this week for the before and after pictures of my Week 15 organization Pinterest Project.

Also be sure to follow my blog or subscribe via news feed.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween Costume

Since we have been with child, my husband and I haven't dressed up for Halloween. We haven't been to many Halloween raves since our son has been around. Not that we have been to any raves, we are kinda lame, but that's not that point.

This year, thanks to a great Pinspiration, I, along with my husband decided to get into the Halloween Spirit. We mostly used what we had around the house, but did make a few small purchases at the craft store. Here is the the Pinspiration for my costume of a Human Pinterest Board... (Blog here)

I thought this costume was unbelievably perfect for this year, since I am doing the 52 Week Pinterest Challenge. I had mostly everything I needed to make this costume, I just purchased a sheet of foam board so that it wouldn't be as heavy as using a cork board. I did add a few of my own pins on my board, so I was a walking advertisement.
Here is a little closer picture of the board. All I used was foam board, ribbon, printed on card stock paper, hot glue (for ribbon), tape and push pins. Mostly items I had around the house.
My costume was a huge hit around the neighborhood, so it was another Pinterest Success!

And now for the rest of the family's costumes. Here is my husband's costume, he went as Ryan Lochte. And my son who went as a Cowboy. Looking good boys!