Monday, June 30, 2014

Today With Bree

Oh I love my little girl! She's just so cute I can't even handle it. Today had it's ups and downs but has been a really fun day.

We enjoyed some cleaning this morning while we listened to Spotify's perfect day somethingorother playlist (I swear I'm not being paid to talk about them, I just have always been a Pandora girl and recently discovered their magic and now I'm in love haha).

Then we had a mom and baby playdate with some friends! Bree got to play with her little friend and I chatted with mine, we enjoyed lunch and attempted naps and tired crankiness and baby giggles and snacks. Oh, and coffee for the mamas ha! We enjoyed some Dr. Seuss and now we wait for daddy to come home with groceries so we can make dinner.

I love this little girl so much. She teaches me lessons daily and wows my mind. She is so loving, compassionate, empathetic, and wild and crazy and wonderful! So here's my little ode to Bree, in our most recent pictures!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Homemade Olive Garden Dressing

 I went into the kitchen today to make myself a salad for lunch, and the only dressing at my disposal was less than savory in my opinion. Alas, I used it anyway and I was extremely disappointed in my lunch. Boo!

As I sat stewing about my icky salad dressing I remembered I had a recipe saved in my "mom binder" that I'd been dying to use, and I checked my cupboard to find that I had all the ingredients to make it!!!!

Who doesn't adore Olive Garden's neverending salad or the dressing that comes on it?! Ohhhhh my goodness.

A while ago I came across a link on Pinterest to make copy cat Olive Garden dressing but I'd just never gotten around to it.

You can read the original post at The Happy Money Saver, she has a bunch of yummy dressing recipes. I'm sharing the recipe and my short little journey making it here!

So first off, I gathered all my ingredients and my Magic Bullet cup (which ended up being the perfect size for mixing it all) and got to it!

  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 packet dried Italian salad dressing packet
  • 4  1/2 Tbs water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp mayonnaise
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp grated Parmesan cheese
(I didn't have any Parmesan, oops, so I obviously didn't include it.)

I also highly suggest listening to the "Sweet Songs for Sunny Days" 
playlist on Spotify when doing anything in the kitchen
It's pretty perfect.

Combine all your ingredients! Easy peasy!

And blend until well mixed!

And there you go! All finished. 
Store in any well sealed container, I had jars lying around so I used those.
Chill overnight for a stronger taste or just eat right away, whatever floats your boat.

And my favorite part, minimal mess to clean up afterwards!

Looking forward to yummy salads! Woo!

Thanks for readin' folks! You can find the Happy Money Saver's printable recipe here.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Nightstand DIY

You know, 6 days after painting my living room and dislocating my rib I would want to paint again. Go figure. But I can breathe deeply, and if my trip to the gym taught me anything, it's that once you feel better you go hard again or go home.

No, don't do that. Rest up so you can heal fully without popping your rib back out.

However, I'm taking it easy and going carefully, and my project was nowhere the size of my living room (or the gym, apparently) so I pulled out the paint!

Justin and I moved into our current home in April of last year, and our bedroom furniture took a beating, including, but not limited to, drawers being taped to their bodies which led to tape being ripped off and taking the finish with it.

And since this catastrophe enabled my dream of painting and refinishing our dresser and nightstand (Pinterest, thank you for the idea of blue furniture) I got some cute country cottage blue paint and completed the project that was our dresser. And it turned out splendidly.


I had plans to refinish hubbs' nightstand in a similar fashion but never got around to it after unpacking, and then the weather got cold (I keep painting for warmer weather days).

Well my fingers were itching for something to do, and since we aren't redoing the bathroom just yet (AKA not today) I decided to surprise Justin and get the side table done!

I was careful not to post this til he got home and could see, hehe.

So here is my nightstand DIY for your viewing pleasure!

The nightstand and drawers, before.

My face, because who in their right mind takes on a project with a rib out. Me. That's who. 

And of course, we watch Disney while we work ♪♫

My equipment:
Paper (or a tarp) to protect the floor.
A wet washcloth to wipe any paint splatters on me or the floor/walls.
Paint+Primer in one.
Sanding apparatus.
Paint brushes to your preference.

Eww, tape injury.

I sanded everything down really well before painting.

Took off the hardware, opened and mixed the paint, 
enjoyed some "Prince Ali" while I painted, 
and alas, we have the first coat!

These are the lovely knobs I'm using to replace the nasty square ones.
Thanks Hobby Lobby!
Place of my dreams.
Seriously, there is nothing that beautiful place doesn't have.

And there it is! In all of it's finished glory, two coats, three on top.
(And Justin's gorgeous sleep apnea machine haha.)

I did a second coat on the top of my dresser as well, it turned out lovely.
Let's enjoy the details!

My bobbie pin holder, a sweet thrift find.

This little containers were a gift from a dear friend at our mom group's gift exchange.
Doesn't it just make everything look organized and cute?!

And now my room is a bit of a mess, sheets in the dryer and pillows in the washer, but I'm happy and things look nice!

~The Crunchy Mama

Thursday, June 12, 2014

An Update!

Man. It has been a while! Life just got crazy and this mama got overwhelmed. But hey, that's okay. I love writing, but in marriage and parenthood a blog is not the highest priority, and I'm proud of myself for letting it go rather than push myself and be unhappy in the business of life!!!

And get this, life is still very busy, and likely will be for the rest of the summer. But I'm planning on setting aside time to write when I can. My cousin's wedding is coming up and I'm matron of honor (yay!!!), vacation with extended family, trying to redo some of the rooms in our apartment, AND in big news, hubby got a promotion (which is wonderful) but as he has added responsibility who knows how our little family's schedule will be impacted.

In updates, life has been good. Little miss is growing (less than four months and she'll be two years old. TWO!) and is learning and growing splendidly. She loves telling people they have "ieeeees" and tries to put her own "shuus" on (usually on the wrong feet) and she is just absolutely stunning.

I had the privilege this week of watching The Business of Being Born with a sweet young friend who is already becoming passionate about birth and has promised to be my birth photographer whenever we have another baby (and ohhhh the baby fever is strong right now but we're waiting).

To continue in my dream of an urban homestead I have started a porch garden (what we lack in backyard in our rental is made up in our huge front porch) with various veggies and herbs. I started everything from seed, so the plants are still maturing, but I can wait to harvest some food!

This weekend I painted our living room, which looks gorgeous, and dislocated a rib in the process. Yay for me. It HURTS. Holy poo on toast does it hurt. I think it went back into place, or at least wasn't hurting (I was able to take deep breaths without hurting and my lungs could expand to sneeze) but I made the mistake of going to the gym yesterday. "Oh I'll just do cardio!" No. Not a good choice. Because now it hurts like a %$#&*! again, can't breathe or sneeze or bend or pick up Bree. And that's what you get when you want to redo the living room.

But it is lovely!

It's incredibly cozy. Even moreso now that we hung our frames and clock and such up. But I'm not taking a picture right now because mama's gotta get off of here to clean haha. (And yes, that is Friends on the TV, my favorite show ever.)

So, there's a brief update for you! The Crunchy Mama got a facelift, and you'll see more of us soon. Much love!