I’m back!

So… I’ve been MIA for quite some time. 😦

I could lie and say I’ve even super busy and working on all kinds of projects, but that wouldn’t be the truth. The truth is I have kind of lost motivation. All I haven’t really baked or done any crafts in quite some time. And don’t even get me started on my diet (or lack there of).

There are a few reasons behind my “lack of motivation” one being the fact that I broke my right foot and severely sprained my left ankle (I tripped over my dogs), but the biggest being money. All though a lot of my projects were D.i.y they still got pretty expensive and for anyone who’s ever made macarons and cakes from scratch you know all those ingredients add up. Not to mention healthier ingredients=more money.

Well I’ve come up with a solution. I decided to start COUPONING and found that I really enjoy it. I’ve started building a stockpile of items my family regularly uses so that I do not have to purchase these items in the near future. The money I will be saving with my couponing will be used to fund all my crazy projects!

I plan on reformatting my blog to include some of my couponing adventures and maybe help you save some money as well. I will keep everyone updated as I go. 🙂

20140531-113403-41643461.jpg

20140531-113402-41642489.jpg

A Little Bit of This and That…

WOW! So I haven’t posted in several weeks. Not that I haven’t been doing anything here at home, but for some reason (probably because I haven’t been feeling so well lately) I haven’t had the motivation to post anything. I need to get out of my funk though!

Here are a few of the projects I’ve completed lately:

 

PS- I took most of these photos of my Instagram. <— Feel free to click the link and follow me there! 🙂

 

Cinnamon Apple Chips

Cinnamon Apple Chips

DIY Kate Spade Inspired Shoes

DIY Kate Spade Inspired Gold Polka Dot Shoes

Easter M&M Cookies

Easter M&M Cookies for the Hubby’s co-workers

Carne Seca

Us New Mexicans call this Carne Seca. Its super yummy!

I’ve been working on some canvas paintings for my house. 🙂

Chai Chia Pudding

Chai Chia Pudding

Reupholstered Chevron Folding Chair

Reupholstered Chevron Folding Chair

A little bit of gold spray paint makes everything look better. 🙂

DIY No-Sew Pillow Cover

DIY No-Sew Pillow Cover

DIY Mason Jar Soap Dispenser

DIY Mason Jar Soap Dispenser

Mixed Berry Oat Muffins

Mixed Berry Oat Muffins

Liebster Award

* Sorry I took so long to post this. I didn’t realize how much time it would take just to move across town…

I feel like I’ve been super busy lately. With moving to a new apartment, helping, my sister pack for her big move, and planning a yard sale I feel like I’ve barely had time to blog. I’ve DIY’ed a bit for my new apartment, but haven’t had too much time to post tutorials or photos so hopefully I can get to those soon.

I do have a bit of exciting news though! I was recently nominated for the Liebster award (which is an award given to new bloggers to network a little with other bloggers and gain exposure) twice by two very awesome bloggers: Lisa at Double Door Ranch  and Bronwyn at The Polished Polka Dot (which I apologize for not knowing what it was until a few days ago. Here’s a little info on the award by the way.)  Thank you ladies! 🙂

liebsteraward

I’ll start by answering the questions given to me by Lisa at Double Door Ranch:

  • How long have you been blogging?

I’ve been blogging since December, so about 3 months.

  • Do you have a day job in addition to your blog?

Right now I do not have a day job. I recently quit my job (I used to be a receptionist at a Hair Salon) to stay home and focus on myself for a while.

  • Kids: have ‘em, want ‘em?

I would love kids, unfortunately I suffer from PCOS (Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome) and chances that I have children naturally are slim. 😦

  • Geometric or floral? (context: anything)

I like mixing both.

  • What have your most popular post topics been?

My most popular posts have surprisingly been macaron posts and not my healthier recipes.

  • What accomplishment are you most proud of?

That’s a tough one. Nothing really comes to mind at the moment. There are so many things I still would like to accomplish in life.

  • Heels, flats, workboots?

I’m definitely a flats kind of girl. I have them in all colors.

  • What is your most prized possession?

My most prized possession is really not a possession, but my husband. I feel so honored to be married to such a wonderful man. I don’t know what I would do without him.

  • If you could pick another city to live in, what would it be?

Although I’ve never been I would love to live in a little beach city on the East Coast. Kind of like Southport, NC where the movie Safe Haven was filmed as cheesy as it sounds.

  • Milk chocolate or dark chocolate?

Milk Chocolate

  • What is your favorite season?

I HATE the cold so not Winter, but I also dislike super hot Summers like the ones here in Las Vegas so probably Autumn.

Now for my questions from Bronwyn from The Polished Polka Dot:

1. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?

If I could go anywhere in the world as cliche as it sounds I would go to Paris, France. I would love to try all the delicious French food and visit all the delicious bakeries.

2. What is your favorite furniture/home decor brand?

I don’t really have a favorite brand. I like an assortment of brands/styles and have really been digging vintage lately.

3. Were you named after someone?

I was named after my grandma Celina. 🙂

4. Would you ever skydive?

I would love to skydive, I just don’t have anyone to go with. My husband is deathly afraid of heights… Don’t tell him I told you 😉

5. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

I love anything with cherries and chocolate.

6. Urban Outfitters or Anthropologie?

Anthropologie if I could afford it haha!

7. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?

For sure I would be pink. 🙂

8. What is your favorite season?

I answered this one a few minutes ago. I have to say Autumn.

9. What is your hidden talent?

No hidden talent, but a lot of my friends didn’t know until recently how crafty I am… 🙂

10. Red or Pink?

PINK! I am a total girly girl and obsessed with anything pink.

11. What was the last thing you ate?

Honestly, I ate some Butterfinger Bites, even though I shouldn’t have. I’m not really supposed to eat sugar, but I had been craving a Butterfinger for weeks…

Now I guess I’m supposed to nominate a few fellow bloggers. So here it goes… I nominate:

My Sweet Soiree

The Refurbished Life

All Things Britney Lee

The Kelley Method

Skinny Sweet Treats

I’m not following 11 blogs under the 500 followers requirement. 😦

And finally here are your questions:

1. What made you decide to start blogging?

2. What is your favorite hobby?

3. If money was not an issue what would you like to do for the rest of your life?

4. Would you rather read a book or watch a movie?

5. What is your favorite meal?

6.  What is something that not many people know about you?

7. Dogs or cats?

8. What is your favorite song?

9 . What is your biggest fear?

10. Sweet, Salty, or Sour?

11. Who do you look up to the most? And why?

 

My “New” Office Chair

Remember when I showed you the really pretty chair that was really ugly at the time? (If that even makes sense…)

hot dog chair before

 

Well I FINALLY finished it!

It took a while, and a lot of screws, wood filler, paint, primer, staples, and well basically I landed up rebuilding the whole chair. The body was wobbly and weak. The cushion had a giant hole. And there were random screws and nails and not to mention a zillion staples all over it.

hot dog before 1 hot dog before 2 hot dog before 3 hot dog before 4

 hot dog before 5 hot dog before 6 hot dog before 7 hot dog before 8

My hubby landed up helping me with a lot of the project (he acts all annoyed at first, but I think he secretly enjoys it.)

So once I got all the staples out I was able to remove the fabric and cushions. We took the whole chair apart and used a few screws and some wood glue to make the chair sturdier. I then used wood filler to fill in a few old holes and gaps that we were unable to fix. I sanded away and then primed the whole thing.

Next was the waiting game for my fabric.

hot dog waverly flamingo fabric

 

The fabric I bought is no longer on Fabric.com,  and only available in large quantities on other sites I found, but here is the same one in a different color.

 

Once it arrived I rushed to Lowe’s and picked out a beautiful paint color. I got the chair painted and added a glaze. I barely let the paint dry before I started upholstering (though I recommend waiting the recommended time.)

hot dog chair before trim

Don’t mind my mess in the background. We are in the process of moving.

My staples on this chair came out a lot neater than my first project. Though I so think my staple gun is defective because my staples never go in all the way. I didn’t want to buy my trim until it was done because I didn’t know how my staples would turn out. I picked out a beautiful hot pink lacy trim.

I think it turned out perfect!

hot dog chair finished

I can’t wait until its in my new office all nice and pretty… 🙂

Here’s a before and after, because it it a HUGE difference.

hot dog chair before and after

Orange-Coconut Creamsicles {Sugar-Free}

The weather outside is getting warmer. It’s definitely Spring time here in Las Vegas. I don’t know about you but when the weather is warm I like to eat a nice cold Popsicle. Preferably a creamsicle. 

Recently when out shopping there was this little old man who set up a Fruit and Vegetable Stand outside of one of the stores. I decided to pick out a few things. I got some beautiful strawberries, red grapes, avocados, and oranges.

The oranges were PERFECT for my Creamsicles! I also had a can of coconut milk at home so I decided to make them Dairy-Free. These Creamsicles were super easy to make and so Delicious! 🙂

creamsicles

Orange-Coconut Creamsicles {Sugar-Free}

  • 1 cup orange juice (I used juice of 3 fresh squeezed oranges, but you can use store-bought juice if you’d like)
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk
  • zest of 3 oranges (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 dropper full of liquid Stevia
  1. Zest 3 oranges and set aside.
  2. Juice the oranges and mix with 1 cup of coconut milk.
  3. Add vanilla extract, liquid Stevia, and zest to creamsicle mixture and mix well.
  4. Pour mixture into popsicle molds (I found mine at World Market for $4.99)
  5. Freeze  until solid.
  6. You can remove from molds and store in an airtight container.

creamsicle1 creamsicle2 creamsicle3 creamsicle4 creamsicle5 creamsicle6 creamsicle7 creamsicle8

Banana-Nut Oat Muffins {Sugar-Free}

I like my bananas pretty green and won’t eat them when the start to get spotty. That means that when I buy bananas I have to eat them fast. Usually I only buy 2-3 at a time. For some reason last week I bought about 5 and my sister had bought herself several as well…

Obviously we didn’t eat them fast enough or we wouldn’t be having this conversation haha!

A few days ago my husband suggested I make banana nut bread again. Last time I made a Gluten-Free Low Sugar Banana Nut Bread. This time I wanted to make muffins because they are easier to eat on-the-go and since my husband really enjoyed the Apple-Walnut Oat Muffins I recently made.

banana nut oat muffins

Banana Nut Oat Muffins {Sugar-Free}

  • 3 cups oat flour
  • 1/4 cup flax-seed
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tablespoons PB2 (Optional)
  • 6 bananas (mashed)
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

*These can be made Gluten-Free if you substitute Gluten-Free Oat Flour

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line muffin pans with liners.
  2. In a large bowl mix together mashed bananas, coconut oil, applesauce, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together oat flour, flax-seed, baking powder, and baking soda (and PB2 if you choose).
  4. Pour wet ingredients into bowl of dry ingredients and mix until combined.
  5. Fold chopped walnuts into muffin batter.
  6. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup pour batter into lined muffin tins. (You will get about 18 muffins)
  7. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
  8. Let cool completely.

banana nut oat muffins2

Enjoy!

Red Velvet Macarons {Gluten-Free}

I’ve been on a bit of a macaron kick lately. If you can’t tell from my previous posts, I’m obsessed! I’ve been dying to try all kinds of new flavors and combinations, however I never really have the occasion, and since I try to eat healthy at home it doesn’t make sense for me to make them and eat them all myself.

Recently it was a friend’s birthday and she LOVES Red Velvet. I finally had the perfect excuse to make some macarons.

I always get nervous when adjusting macarons recipes and since Red Velvet ones use a ton of red food coloring these ones drove me crazy. My first attempt was a complete macaron FAIL! Not to mention they tasted more like chocolate than Red Velvet (Which most people seem to think Red Velvet is. They don’t realize there should barely be any cocoa powder and it needs buttermilk to be Red Velvet.)

red velvet macaron Fail    Red velvet macaron Fail! 

My second batch came out pretty good, after I adjusted the amounts of cocoa powder and powdered buttermilk. I also tried to add less food coloring. 

red velvet macarons before baking

 

Here’s my recipe if you’d like to give them a try.

red velvet macarons

 

 

Red Velvet Macarons

Shell:

  • 90g egg whites
  • 30g granulated sugar
  • 200g powdered sugar
  • 110g almond meal
  • 2 tbsp. powdered buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp. cocoa powder
  • red GEL food color

Filling:

  • 4oz. cream cheese (softened)
  • 2oz unsalted sweet cream butter (softened)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

Place the powdered sugar, almond meal, cocoa powder, and powdered buttermilk in a food processor and give them a good pulse until the nuts are finely ground.

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites to a foam, (think bubble bath foam). Gradually add the sugar  and whip to a soft peak. Add the red food color during the soft peak stage. Let mix until you obtain a glossy meringue (think shaving cream). Do not over beat your meringue or it will be too dry.

Add the almond meal and powdered sugar mixture to the meringue, give it a quick fold to break some of the air and then fold the mass carefully until you obtain a batter that falls back on itself after counting to 10. Give quick strokes at first to break the mass and slow down. The whole process should not take more than 50 strokes.

Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain large tip (I use a Wilton size 1A) with the batter and pipe small rounds (1.5 inches in diameter) onto parchment paper or silicone mats lined  macaron baking sheets (I got mine at World Market for $7.99 each).

Let the macarons sit out for 30 minutes to an hour to harden their shells a bit.

Preheat the oven to 300F. When ready, bake for 12 to 18 minutes, depending on their size. They are done when you can easily lift the shell off of the baking sheet without it sticking.

While shells are cooling whip butter and cream cheese using whisk attachment of stand mixer. Add in vanilla extract and give a good mix. Slowly add in powdered sugar and mix until frosting forms. Fill pastry bag fitted with the same size pastry tip as before. Place a small dollop of filling onto one shell and pair with another like size shell.

 

 

Since these were for a friend’s birthday I decided to package them in this adorable red Chevron box I found during Valentine’s Day at Target. Don’t they look so cute? 🙂

red velvet macarons packaged