Friday, December 20, 2013

The coffee bar.

(update: welcome, if you've found this blog through Pintrest you're not alone, it's the most popular post so far and if you want to know how we built the coffee rack see this post.

Another project inspired by Pintrest. (what did I do before Pintrest, I really have no idea). Something I see all over Pintrest are little coffee bars people have in their kitchens.  They take an old kitchen rack, or dresser and fix them up and then take all their coffee stuff on the counter and onto the new coffee bar.  I've been looking everywhere for a little dresser or something to fix up.  We have an empty space between the kitchen and the dinning room that would be perfect for the coffee bar.  When we were on our anniversary in Traverse City we stopped by a Goodwill, who doesn't do that on vacation? At Goodwill we found this dresser, and I fell in love.
So we took it all apart and painted it dark blue. 
Then Adam lacquered the top of it.
And we added our coffee machines to it.
 Here's how it looks with our new coffee rack.

It was a pretty simple project, but for whatever reason it took us months to finish :) I've had it up since Thanksgiving and I have to say I really like it.  It's freed up my kitchen counter space, and the coffee bar is super cute. 
Happy Pintresting!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

The coffee cup rack

Once upon a time I worked at a coffee shop.  Because of this job I found my love of coffee and of coffee mugs.  I bought mugs all the time.  I have so many mugs that they are in all the cupboards.  It drives Adam nuts because I have so many.  So one day on Pintrest I found this pin.
Coffee cup shelving! Brilliant! better than stackin them in cupboards!
I was inspired to make it.  So I talked to Adam and we figured out what how we could make it (he can build anything).
We took out our mugs, then measured and counted them and talked about how we wanted them to look.  Then Adam played around in AutoCAD and figured what it would like. 
 Step 1: create blueprint
We decided it was going to be 4 1/2 inches deep and 34 1/2 inches tall x 34 1/2 inches wide.  

Step 2: rip the boards to size
We started with a stack of 6 foot long pine boards.
Then they got ripped down to 4 1/2 inches wide.

Pepper always supervises.
Step 3: cut boards down to size
Here's what we cut.
amount- size
6 pieces -33"
2 pieces - 34 1/2"
25 pieces - 6"
Step 4: Paint the boards 
Step 5: Assemble the outside frame (used two 33" and two 34 1/2" pieces for outer frame.  We used wood glue and a mini nail pinner, and used clamps to hold it together over night.

Step 6: Glue and nail the rest of the 33" pieces inside the frame.  
Hold together with clamps over night.

Step 7: Glue and Nail in the 6" pieces according to the blue print.
Hold together with smaller clamps.
 We let it drive over night.

Step 8: Sand down all rough edges.
Step 9: Use wood putty to fill in any/all gaps.

 Step 10: Sand down the newly puttied joints.
Step 11: Repaint the entire thing!
No pictures at this point, we were too tired.

Step 12: Hang on the wall and fill in with mugs.

Adam and I love doing projects.  This is a project you could probably finish in a weekend.  We however took a couple of months to finish this.  Adam is a starter, so while we were working on this he was also working on the mantle to our new fire place, and our new coffee bar and he's always working on organizing his garage.  But despite all the distractions we finally got it done, and it looks great. 

I hope this inspires you to get some projects done!

God Bless

Thursday, October 10, 2013

A day of errands with erin

While I've been off work for the last 6 weeks I've had the chance to have coffee or breakfast with some of my favorite people.  My mom has come up once a week to have lunch with me, my friend Chelsea and I have coffee/lunch every Friday, my cousin Erin and I have reconnected over breakfast a couple of times and today I'm having coffee with my mentor/ friend.  I've really enjoyed my time with all my friends.  I've even been able to have coffee with my sister, which usually ends in shenanigans :)  I'm so grateful for all my friends and family for supporting me during my time off.  It only makes going back to work next week harder.  I would love to stay home and enjoy coffee with my loved ones, but Monday morning it'll be back to the grindstone.  But lets not focus on that for now. 

Lets focus on yesterday with Erin.  Her wedding is this Saturday so she had last minute wedding errands that needed to be done and I was invited to tag along.  First we met up at the best breakfast restaurant in town...Cosmos. Then we returned some dishes and clothes, then she took me by the Lakeside Rose Garden where she is getting married.  She's having a very small wedding with only her immediate family, so I am only going to the reception so it was really cool to see where the wedding will be held.  It's a really beautiful park.

this is where her ceremony will be

I can't wait for her to get back from her honeymoon in Europe! so I can see her wedding photos. 
Next we went out to Hilger's Farm to pick up some pumpkins for her decorations.

I even picked up a couple of gourds for myself. 
The last errand we did was picking up her wedding dress.  I got a special show, and got to see her in it.  She's absolutely stunning.  I was allowed to take a picture, but I promised I wouldn't show it before her wedding.  I'll post it on Saturday with reception photos.  I was so thrilled to be a part of her special day and I am excited to see how the reception turns out. 
I'll leave you with this photo of Pepper, this is what happens when I try to eat breakfast and she's in the same room.
I'm not staring at you mom.
Have a great day.
God Bless


Friday, October 4, 2013

A day of firsts.

So food trucks are all the rage these days.  I've heard about some that are downtown Fort Wayne during lunch hours, but I'd never tried them out until today.  My weekly coffee with my friend from ambitiousexecution went from coffee to lunch.  We must have been really hungry because that's all we could talk about.  So she mentions BRAVAS, a Spanish Tapas truck.  And we look it up and find that it's going to be downtown, so we decided pick up her daughter and to stalk it.  And then stand outside until it opened up.  Can you tell we had no plans today :)
Such a cute truck!
I didn't really know what to expect she had only told me about their hot dogs.  So I ordered the
SNOOPdog (lol)
Smoked bacon, smoked gouda cheese & garlic aioli.

I thought this was the best hot dog ever created until I got to have a bite of the
It had chorizo sausage, macaroni and cheese, cornbread crumbs, and pickled jalapeƱos.
I don't even like jalapenos and it was amazing.
We also tried the Patatas Bravas
Triple fried hand cut potatoes with our signature brava sauce and garlic aioli
I don't know why they were so good but, oh dear me they were amazing.
I am glad I tried it and I would suggest you try it too.
So we were enjoying the entertainment on the Square, the philharmonic had a brass quartet and a young couple was doing an acrobatic act.  It was a lovely lunch and then when we got to the car a lovely woman handed me this.
I got my first parking ticket.  I was kind of upset and I wanted to yell at the lady, but she was only doing her job so I just said thank you and took it from her.  But I've worked down town for almost 5 years and this is my first parking ticket, so it's not too bad.  So I would suggest you go down town to try the food trucks, but pay attention to your time you don't want a $10.00 parking ticket.
Have you tried food trucks before? When was your first parking ticket?
God Bless

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

What I ate Wednesday #4

So my What I ate Wednesday posts are not so much what I am going to eat on Wednesday (I can't tell the future), but more some of the interesting things I ate last week.  I say that because the following doesn't really fit into the October Unprocessed Challenge Adam and I are doing.  
Crockpot recipe

Since the weather is starting to turn I'm craving cold weather food, in my mind that's soups and recipes in my crockpot.  So I made Ham and Beans.  It was pretty simple I just took some Northern Beans and a precooked, presliced ham and threw them in the pot and covered with water.  Then cooked in on low for 6 hours.

To make it a special I decided to make cornbread in the waffle iron.  How much fun is that? (I need to get out more)  Well if I did it you have to know it was easy :)  I made Bob's Red Mill gluten free cornbread and then poured it into the waffle iron.  It made 4 large waffles.

It was easy and kind of fun.

Top with some cheese and it was fall perfection.  I even ate it outside to enjoy the fall weather.
Date Night

Our favorite place to get Pizza in Fort Wayne is Pint 'n Slice.  We never get a pint, but there is something about the crust that is just perfect.  This pizza place is the kind that they have 4 different kinds of pizza made up ahead of time and you can buy it by the slice.  One of us usually tries a new kind.  Last weekend they didn't have anything I wanted to try other than cheese, but Adam tried the bacon and macaroni and cheese pizza.  I had a was pretty wonderful.  I would probably try it again.
 For our first day on the unprocessed challenge I had a simple breakfast.
Apples and almond butter, a banana, and coffee.

For lunch I had a really great salad at Old Crown Coffee Company.  I had the Simple salad. 
The Simple House Salad & Havarti · $5.95Mixed Organic Field Greens, Leaf Lettuce, Cucumber, Sprouts, Red Onion & Tomato with your choice of dressing
I had turkey added to it and had the balsamic Caesar dressing.  It was really good.  I would go back and get it again.
My mother had the other salad.

The Other Salad · $6.25Mixed Organic Field Greens, Leaf Lettuce, Cucumber, Sprouts, Roasted Red Pepper, Red Onion, Tomato & Bleu Cheese Crumbles
Dressed with our Balsamic Caesar and topped with a splash of Almonds & Apricots
She had chicken added to it, and both of us thought there was a lot of meat added to our salads.  I would suggest Old Crown as a place to get a good lunch.  We also had drinks, I had a  good cup of coffee, and mom had a fruity iced tea, that was also really good.

I can't wait to read all about what the rest of you guys have been eating.

God Bless

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

October Unprocessed

Through Pintrest I found a group of people challenging each other to eat unprocessed food for the entire month of October. 
October Unprocessed 2013

I figure this is the best month to go unprocessed.  Before the holidays start and after our yearly vacation is the best time to kind of reboot.  I must confess we haven't been doing the greatest job with food and exercise.  But we haven't given up hope yet :)  I think this month's challenge is just what we need.  And the website has so many resources.  I like how they encourage everyone to do the best they can.  If you can't eat unprocessed for every meal, do as many unprocessed meals as possible.  Some people only give up some ingredients like corn syrup, or other additives.   

Adam and I are going to encourage each other to eat as unprocessed as possible.  The challenge information talks about having a cheat day.  Or at least a cheat meal, once a week.  And that works perfectly for me because we have a wedding this month, and I tend to go out to eat once a week with my mom. 

Our meal plan is to eat a smoothie in the morning, a salad for lunch, and a simple meal of meat and veggies for dinner.  And today I'm having lunch with my mom, and I plan on having a salad at the restaurant.  We're really just trying to make simpler choices.  I think this will be really good for us.

So it's a new month, let me know what your goals are, so we can encourage each other.

Time to go make our smoothies for the day.

God Bless,

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Another productive weekend.

So I think I'm spending too much time with my dog.  Right now I'm at home all day and Pepper and I spend the entire time together.  We're pretty much like best friends now.

This is pepper on my leg, my leg isn't as big as it seems in the photo...don't judge me.
Enough about my strange relationship with my dog.  Here's a picture of our front door.  It and the shutters have needed a touch up since we moved in 3 years ago, and finally this weekend they got it. 
We ran to Lowes to pick out a color and magically we pointed at the same color.  It took us less than 30 seconds to pick a color, that has to be a record.  The truly weird part is that it's called Mark Twain Brick Gray.  What is that?  Since when does Mark Twain remind you of gray?  Whatever happened to Slate, or rock?

Since Adam HAD to buy the paint sprayer I'm going to make sure he uses it.  Here he is spraying the shutters with Mark Twain.
So something that you should learn from us...wasps like to live behind shutters.  Another lesson, is that even though the wasps are dead behind the first shutter doesn't mean they are behind the shutters that you have to be on a ladder to get to.   Lets just say Adam almost fell off the ladder as I was screaming "wasps! wasps!".  I try to be as helpful as possible.  Luckily Ant and Roach spray kills wasps, because that's the only bug spray we had and it may have come with the house. 
 While Adam painted the door Pepper stood guard.

And finally the finished product.
We do good work....I say we because I painted the part next to the door.  Hey I can be helpful.  So hopefully it will stop raining today and we can get the shutters out of my dinning room and back onto the house, yeah!
Have a great week.
God Bless


Saturday, September 21, 2013

The worst question ever asked.

Every year in September my place of work has Town Hall meetings where the CEO comes to town and gives a talk and at the end he will answer any questions from the crowd.  Most of the questions are related to business or finance , but every year there is that one person who has to ask a stupid question.  People have asked him about his coffee habits and once what kind of hair products he used but none of these are as horrible/ stupid as the question I was asked today.

I was at the mall this morning.  It was a really nice time to be there only the big clothing stores were open so it was basically just me and the mall walkers.  Everything was quiet and peaceful and on top of the lovely atmosphere I had coupons to 3 different stores.  So I stopped by Carson's to buy a gift, and then I stopped by CJ Banks because I had a 40% off coupon (you can't pass that up).  It's not usually a store I shop in but I had noticed some pretty sweaters so I stopped by.  I was innocently looking at a jacket when it obnoxious sales women came up when she asked me when I was due.  In shock I answered "hmmm?".  And instead of picking up on the fact that she had just insulted my because I am not pregnant she said "well you're pregnant right?"  As I write this I can think of a thousand snarky remarks that I should have said.  But I was still in shock and just said "no", and the sales lady continued to tell me how I carry all my weight in my stomach and therefore look pregnant.  Now if you're like me you're ready to slap this lady.  But you have to know that she is at least 65.  So I felt like I couldn't scream or be rude to her.  Then she continues to talk about how heavy I am and how there was a lady at her church who was just as heavy and she also asked that lady if she was pregnant and she was shocked when the lady was rude to her.  She told me it was ok though because lots of women carry excess weight in their belly.  It was the worst conversation I've ever had with a person.

This has not really been my year.  Kids keep calling me ma'am, I've found my first gray hairs, I am on leave for depression, and now I'm heavy enough that people think I look pregnant.  Let's just say I'm never going to eat again.

Ok so that's not true.  I just needed to vent.  If you can imagine I came home and climbed back into bed with Adam and had a good cry.  Adam had some choice words he told me I should have used.  And then I had to convince him to not go beat up an old lady. 

Why do I tell you this?  So many reasons :)  First of all don't ask anyone if they're pregnant...ever.  Second if someone is overweight they don't want to talk about it.  Why is it that since I've gained weight that's all anyone wants to talk about?  My family is particularly bad on this subject.  I looked in the mirror this morning I know how I look so why is my weight the only thing anyone notices.  Maybe that's why I love blogging.  No one can see me and therefore they can see who I really am and not just what I look like.  Ok and there is one more reason for this story.  I wanted the world to know, I'm over it. So one rude women insulted me, I'm not going to let it ruin my life.  Let's just have a good laugh about it and move on.

So tell me what's the worst question you were asked?  And how did you get over it?

God Bless

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

What I ate Wednesday #2

Welcome to another WIAW post.  

Today's post is a little backwards, Dinner, lunch than breakfast.   I love these posts, seeing what everyone else has been eating always inspires me.  Something else that inspires me?...sales.  I'm trying to schedule our meals around what's on sale at the grocery sale.  So when I saw baby back ribs on sale, I couldn't resist. 


Of course we've never made ribs before so it was an adventure.  We had some amazing BBQ sauce from Ribfest, so I knew I wanted to use that along with a dry rub.  So I looked up dry rub recipes. 
I found a recipe here.  I mixed it up, and applied it to my ribs and let it set in the fridge until we could figure out how to cook ribs.  Which ended up being a couple of days.

Adam then suggested we try the ribs in the crockpot.  Sounded easy enough to me.   Because I didn't want to clean the crockpot... I used a crockpot liner (best invention ever).

I did some internet research and found you can do ribs in the crockpot fairly easily.  So I placed these in the pot meaty side toward the outside and covered it Cowboys bbq sauce.  I set the crockpot on low for 6 hours.  At exactly 6 hours I checked them and they fell off the bone.  That's a perfect rib.  When Adam got home the whole house smelled delicious. mmm barbeque.  I had my ribs with my homegrown squash, and cooked up some green beans for Adam. 

I don't have any pictures of the ribs on our plates because they were devoured much too quickly :) We will definitely be adding this to our recipe repertoire.

Adam and I have been on a Caesar salad kick.  So after ordering them out a couple of times I decided it was time to find a Caesar dressing we liked.  I found the Kraft  Caesar dressing is very good. 

So I made this salad.  I wanted chicken, but was too lazy to grill some up so I got a rotisserie chicken. It was freaking wonderful :)

Another great meal I made this week is Oatmeal banana pancakes.  I found the recipe here.  I woke up one morning and had to have pancakes.  These just hit the spot, they were totally GF and would have been vegan had I had vegan chocolate but instead I had a Hershey bar that was chopped up in these.  

I doubled the recipe and got 5 large pancakes.  Adam and I both enjoyed these.  It's a great way to use up old bananas, and I'm hoping it's a recipe that I can make up ahead of time and freeze so when we want pancakes we can thaw them.

What have you been eating?

God Bless