There is still time (and a couple spots left) to register for the Hand-Painted Gold Gilded Frame Class I am teaching this spring for Arlington Community Education! The class will be held Wednesday, March 26 from 7-9pm at Arlington High School. Register online today – it will be so much fun and a great springtime girls night out!
In this class we will paint 4×6 picture frames and then use gold leaf as an accent decor – whether it’s half the frame, sporadic throughout, it will be up to you! The most important thing is you’ll learn how to work with leaf paper (it’s very delicate and can be frustrating) and be able to take that knowledge and make all sorts of other projects with gold (or any other metallic) leaf. In fact, I just made a gold leaf Easter egg for a project for the blog next month….don’t you love the look?
A couple months ago my friend posted the most amazing pasta dish on Instagram and as the likes were coming in, it came out in the comments that the noodles were in fact made from zucchini! Zoodles – zucchini not pasta! Isn’t that amazing? Turns out she made them with a Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer and I knew immediately we needed one for our kitchen. Turns out, my husband was struggling to think of a Valentine’s Day gift and ended up getting me one – how romantic, ha! Anyways…we. are. addicted! And before I walk you through how to use the “machine” (I use the term lightly as it’s a hand crank system with super sharp blade, not electric or anything), I wanted to share that zoodles are SO good, they can even confuse your toddler into eating them, thinking they are her beloved noodles!
There’s not too much to making your zoodles, just stick one end of the zucchini into the blade and the other on the prongs, then use the handle to turn the zucchini while pressing forward and out come zoodles on the other side.
So easy. A couple notes: You will end up with some unbelievably long zucchini noodles so you may want to break the noodles off at one point so they don’t get too long. You can also see the absolute center of the zucchini isn’t used and you end up with a long cylinder of the zucchini at the end – you could always dice it up and add it to your sauce!
You can eat zoodles like regular pasta with any sort of sauce. We found a great recipe in the Williams-Sonoma catalog (they sell the same Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer that we have) with a sauteed butternut squash sauce with thyme, lemon, and garlic that we also added grilled shrimp to, it was great.
More to come from our new Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer! I am thinking sweet potato noodles, next – and once we start getting our CSA again, forget it – everything is turning into a noodle!
My little Z is really into accessories right now, no shocker there. She’s always had a thing for shoes, but recently, we cannot leave the house without a bow in her hair – I agree with her, you always need a little something to accessorize your outfit, right? Well, let me tell you about bows on a toddler. We have bows given to us by cousins, bows I’ve made myself, bows we’ve found on etsy that are so cute and overpriced…and they all get lost. Always. In fact, I drew the line this past Friday after she lost one of the bows I made myself and declared we are never paying more than a dollar or spending more than one minute making a hair bow ever again. Later that day we made a quick trip to the mall to run an errand and I was so delighted to find the answer to our bow issues. Good ‘ol Forever 21 has a toddler bow department! Well, maybe these bows aren’t necessarily made for toddlers, but they fit the description of any bows now entering our home – they are cool, cute, tiny, and just $1.80/pair (that’s less than $1/each people)! We bought a few…
I threw in that little headband for $2.80 for good measure.
And she has been in bow heaven ever since (she wore a bow and the bow headband yesterday) – and by the way, we haven’t lost one yet, how ironic!
We went up to North Conway last weekend and my husband skied…and Z and I shopped for skis! We didn’t get her any, but she sure is excited to try “key-ing” next winter!
While we were up there we visited our favorite MWV Children’s Museum – I highly recommend it if you’re in the area with your toddler to even 6-year-old child. Tons of playing and learning…and even a pretend vet’s office where you can do check-ups on dogs, cats, and bunnies. It’s one of my Z’s favorite things there.
Speaking of fake doctor’s kits, I found out kitty Maxine sleeping on Z’s the other day…can’t be comfortable.
Have you bought strawberries lately? They’re XLarge and oh so sweet!
I mentioned yesterday my Z was sick and we were stuck inside a couple days this week. One stuck-inside-activity we did was pour water from one tiny paper cup to another while counting the cups…don’t worry, this scene is not too idyllic, the cups and therefore water landed on the floor about 4 minutes after this photo was taken.
We were feeling better and out of the house by Thursday so I decided to wear my fave springy statement necklace in celebration!
This is one of those weeks we are just trying to get through, know what I mean? Having a sick toddler who doesn’t act sick will do that to you – meaning, you can’t do any of your normal activities or leave the house really, but she still has the same amount of energy so we’re all going a little stir crazy. But beyond my little Z being actually sick, cold temps and (extraordinarily) dry air have left us all with non-strep sore throats, itchy dry skin, and runny noses. I have been leaning harder than usual on some health and beauty products, so I thought I’d talk about them below and ask if there’s anything getting you through this crazier thank normal dry weather?
1. Bliss Vanilla & Bergamot Body Butter – the best body lotion ever! The smell is amazing but the lotion itself is thick while being able to absorb into your skin quickly and not feel greasy. I love this stuff. 2. Vaseline lip therapy in rosy lips. Have you tried this? The healing power of Vaseline combined with a little rose color – heals while you wear throughout the day. 3. Luden’s throat lozenges for the throat. Being pregnant there aren’t many options for a severe sore throat so these have been great! 4. My cuticles are a nightmare in this weather so I used my Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Nail & Cuticle Therapy before my weekly at-home mani, it really nourishes your cuticles. Btw, I am obsessed with the entire C&E Gardeners line, the lotion smells amazing! 5. First Aid Beauty’s Ultra Repair Cream. I use this on my hands every. single. day. I got this lotion in the swag bag from the Boston Bloggers Style Summit I went to a year ago an knew immediately this was an amazing product. Especially for my hands, I love a lotion that instantly makes your skin soft and hydrated but not greasy or sticky. This is the one, friends!
Not pictured – cool mist humidifier going 24/7. We live in an exceptionally dry home anyway so combined with the air this week it’s been brutal. And galllllons of water, an obvious beverage when it’s dry.
There are a few classic recipes that we make more often than anything I share here on the blog so I thought it would be fun to change that! The first recipe classic I wanted to blog about is the pot roast recipe we make about once a month during the cold winter months. Pot Roast can be made a number of ways but years ago we tried this Tyler Florence Pot Roast recipe and we thought it was just delish. Then our Z came along and let me tell you, there is no meal this toddler likes more – she hums in delight as she eats, especially the carrots. That’s right – a toddler enjoying carrots!I thought it was a good time to share this short and simple recipe while the temp is still bitter cold outside. This is a great meal to make on a snow day since it takes 3 hours to simmer and I am sorry to say, in the Northeast I am sure we have at least one doozy of a storm left this winter!
Start by searing your well-seasoned beef in a very hot dutch oven. The sear is important to add tons of flavor.
Add a can of tomatoes, a cup of water and your veggies – we stick with onions (we like these) and carrots (Z loves them, as mentioned above).
Toss in your herbs and let summer, covered for 3 hours. We serve with egg noodles on the side. Enjoy!
I am (mostly) Irish. And combined with my husband’s German and Italian genes, my Z is like 35% Irish. But not being 100% certainly doesn’t stop us from celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in style! We always celebrate with beer (although not me this year), food – making Irish soda bread and always Irish corned beef and cabbage, and of course we wear green! This year, I thought it would be fun to make Z her own little St. Patrick’s Day t-shirt with a little saying telling exactly how Irish she is. It was so simple, I thought I’d run through how I made it and share the PDF with you to make your own shirt!
Then I carved a four-leaf clover stamp out of (what else?) a potato – you can’t get more Irish than that. Start by cutting your potato in half, lightly sketch an image of a four-leaf clover, and carefully cut out/carve the potato with a very sharp paring knife.
Test your stamp with your fabric paint on scrap paper (I just used a paper towel) to make sure you’re happy with the shape. I realized I needed to carve out a little more between 2 of the leaves on my test stamp.
Now, go to town with your stamp using fabric paint – this is the fun part! *Make sure to put a piece of cardboard between the front and back of your shirt to make sure the paint doesn’t leak through.
There were a couple spots that needed a little more green paint so I filled them in with my finger, it’s hard to get every shamrock perfect every time with a potato.
Let dry for at least 4 hours before wearing. Let paint and iron-on image set for at least 72 hours before washing. Enjoy your DIY St. Patrick’s Day T-shirt! My little Z wasn’t feeling great when I made this shirt, so I promise to share a photo of her wearing it ASAP!