Monday, August 29, 2011

Pinterest Inspirations become Reality

Headband Holder made from Oatmeal Canister and Scrap Fabric

I love Pinterest. It is my new favorite way to waste time :). If you have never heard of it,then you must check it out. It is basically a way to organize your favorites in one place. You just search the internet for recipes you want to try, home decor you love, fashion that inspires you, quotes that make your heart smile, crafts you long to make, etc... and you "pin" them on your page. People can follow your boards (categories) and "repin" your "pins". It is fabulous! But, I must warn you, it is very, very addictive. But, on a positive note, I have gotten some amazing ideas for cheap craft and home projects, and I have found some fabulous recipes.

After pinning things for several weeks, I finally got around to actually creating some of the things that I pinned. This week, I have made 2 cake stands, a hairband holder for Bella, a noodle race track for my son, a "God Box", and a beautiful menu/love note board for our kitchen. All of these projects were super cheap to make. The cake stand and noodle race track supplies came from the dollar tree. The frame I used for the menu board was 50% off at Hobby Lobby, and the hairband holder supplies were free since I just repurposed an empty oatmeal canister and used fabric and ribbons that I already had. So fun and So frugal!

The "God Box" is a box with index cards that we are going to keep in our kitchen. When we are worried or fearful, we will write down our fear or worry on an index card and put it in the box-a physical act of surrendering the burden to God. Each week we will take the cards out and pray over them as a family.

I have plans to make large batches of the pumpkin granola and cinnamon honey butter that I pinned to give as gifts this Autumn to friends, teachers, and family. And, I am totally making the pinned "acorn donut holes" and "ghost nutter butter cookies" for my son's preschool class at Halloween.

I hope you enjoy the pictures below and if you want details on how I made them, then send me an email, leave a comment, or visit my pinterest page for the links to the original projects:

I pray your day is full of joy, inspiration, and love as you use the talents and passions God has given you to bless others. I will leave you with one of the quotes that I pinned that truly makes my heart smile

"Pool Noodle" Race Track with Marbles

God Box-Actively Surrendering our Worries to God

Cake Stand made from Glass and Plate from the Dollar Tree

Menu Board/Note Board made from a picture frame and scrapbook paper and using dry erase markers.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Buttermilk Spice Muffins...Mimi's Cafe Muffin Makeover

My hubby loves the jumbo Buttermilk Spice Muffins at Mimi's Cafe. However, we rarely go out to eat, so I decided to search for a similar muffin recipe. I found one on the Family Fun website and made a few small changes to it; resulting in an award-winning muffin according to my hubby and friends. My friend even declared them her most favorite muffin I have ever made, and her children gave them an A+++! I baked these in regular size muffin pans, but you could easily make 6 jumbo size ones or 30 mini ones if you like. The recipe said it makes one dozen regular size, but I was able to get 15 out of the batter. If you don't keep buttermilk on hand, you can make your own by mixing 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice OR 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar per 1 cup of regular milk. Stir and let it sit five minutes until you add it to your recipe.

I encourage you to pretend you are at a restaurant this weekend, possibly even Mimi's Cafe, and get your kids involved in helping you measure the ingredients, stir the batter, and insert the muffin liners. Declare them "chefs for the day" and watch how their faces delight and their hearts soar as you spend quality time with them. My four year old loves helping Mommy bake in the kitchen....especially when there is chocolate chips involved ;-).

Have a Blessed Weekend! You are prayed for and loved dearly by your Heavenly Father!

Psalm 127:3
"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him."


Buttermilk Spice Muffins

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter (1stick), softened
3 large eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup + 1 Tablespoon Buttermilk (well-shaken)
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with cupcake liners or grease with cooking spray. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until well mixed.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. Add half of the dry ingredients to the butter mixture then mix in the buttermilk. Add the remaining flour mixture, beating just until combined. The batter may be lumpy.

Prepare the sugary nut topping. In a small food processor or blender pulse the topping ingredients until the nuts are finely ground and the ingredients well-mixed. If you prefer large nut pieces, then just mix your ingredients in a bowl - this is how I do it. I think the muffin has a more bakery-style look when you leave the nuts in larger pieces.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins, filling each 3/4 way full. Sprinkle the top with a large tablespoon of the sugary nut topping. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the muffin comes out clean. Be careful not to over-bake or the muffins will be too dry. Cool in the muffin tin for five minutes and then move to a cooling rack. Enjoy warm with a cup of coffee or hot tea :-).

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Upside Down Caramel Apple Coffee Cake & My Cutie Pie

Sorry for the big break in blogging but I have been a bit busy enjoying our precious baby girl, Bella Joy, who was born in early July. She is a true delight and has already brought us so much joy! We are rejoicing in God's beautiful blessing!

I have finally returned to baking, and today I made this delish and super easy coffee cake from the new Gooseberry Patch cookbook, Quick & Easy Autumn. As previously mentioned in older posts, I love Gooseberry cookbooks. If you are looking for a quick and yummy breakfast treat that gives you a glimpse of Autumn, then this recipe is for you. I am so ready for Fall....cooler temps, yummy pumpkin and apple treats, and the beautiful colors of Autumn. Here in TX, the temperatures have been 106 and higher so Fall can't get here soon enough! Enjoy the recipe and remember that you are dearly loved and prayed for!

Psalm 86:15
"But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness."

Upside Down Caramel Apple Coffee Cake

1 1/2 cups apples, peeled, cored, chopped, and divided
12.4 oz tube refrigerated cinnamon rolls, separated
1/2 cup pecan pieces
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
2 Tablespoons corn syrup

Spread one cup of apples in a 9" glass pie plate sprayed with non-stick vegetable spray. Cut cinnamon rolls into quarters, setting aside icing from tube. Place rolls in a large bowl; add remaining apples and pecans. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients; mix well and pour over rolls. Toss gently to combine. Spoon mixture over apples in pan. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes, until rolls are deep golden. Cool for 5 minutes; invert onto a serving platter. Remove lid from icing and microwave for 10 to 15 seconds. Drizzle icing over warm coffee cake. Makes 8 servings.