Friday, June 29, 2012

Curtains and Curtains, oh my!

So, who loves stripes?  Me me me!!  Gray and white striped curtains have been pretty popular late, but they're really hard to find!  Crate and Barrel finally came out with a pair, but they're $90 per panel!  Cmon!

West Elm sells a much more affordable curtain for $40, but it's a shower curtain.  That doesn't really matter, they're super wide and made from cloth and loveable.   And...my closet happens to be able the same measurements of a shower curtain, so I was all over picking up one for myself!
Unfortunately, the stripes just did not mesh with our wall color!! I meant to paint my room dark gray, but it turned out more navy blue/gray.  So...the beautiful striped curtain completely clashed.  Boo.

But, while I was in West Elm, I spied another shower curtain that I loved on clearance for $20!  I decided to grab one just in case, planning on returning which ever didn't look good.
Ding ding ding!!  The Moroccan print matched the paint perfectly!
Nope, they don't match each other either!
The curtains have a subtle ombre design, getting darker as they approach the bottom. 




Now we just need to tackle the brown velvet curtains we still have over our windows!  I think a simple white curtain might be best?

Back to those stripes though...Tim and I loved them so much we decided to throw it in the actual shower.
Love :).  We decided to keep it even though I hate shower curtains and it makes it really dark in the bathroom.  Worth it!  Maybe we'll get a light installed in the shower?


Have you made any fun home purchases lately?

Monday, June 18, 2012

Lentils with "Sausage" and Kale

Lentils have been in the news a lot lately because they pack a mean punch in the nutrition department!  They're full of fiber, protein, and B vitamins!  Now, I've always been a big fan of lentils, but I mostly ever have them one way: lentil soup!  Or, the occasional sloppy joe.  So on a quest to find more lentil recipes, I stumbled upon one that made my mouth water!
I've veganized it up to make it even healthier without the cholesterol-full sausages!  I also love that this meal contains a lot of ingredients I always have on hand; Sausages are the only "out of the norm" thing to buy!

Lentils with Kale and "Sausage"
Ingredients
  • 1-4 Field Roast Smoked Apple Sage Sausages (I used 3)
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbls minced garlic
  • Red Pepper Flakes, a pinch
  • 2 1/2 c water
  • 1 1/2 c red wine
  • 1 c lentils
  • Kale, lots and lots of chopped kale!
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Slice the sausages into strips and brown in a pan for a few minutes on each side; put aside on a paper towel.
Cook the onions until they're nice and brown, breaking up the onion slices as you stir.
Add the garlic and crushed pepper and cook for another minute.
Now it's time to pour in the water and wine! Bring them to a boil, then reduce the heat and add the lentils. 

Allow them to cook partially covered for ~40 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Cook them to your desired tenderness.
Add the kale, allowing it to cook down and continuing to add more until it's all in there.  Let the kale cook for 5-10 minutes, or until desired wilti-ness.

Lastly, slice the sausages and add them back to the pan and allow to warm through again.
Yum!!!  The lentils have a great wine flavor, and of course it goes great with a glass of wine on the side!
I'm actually making this again tonight!  So excited!

Hop over to my recipes page for more plant based meal ideas!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Frame Wall

It's done kinda!
As usual, I thought it would be a great idea to take photos at night because I'm too anxious to wait until the weekends to take nice daylight photos, so bare with me!

Man, our living room wall colors look so crazy in these pictures as well!
But back to the point, the gallery wall I've been working on in this funny little nook by our TV is relitively done!  At least to the point we're I'm calling it.  It'll truely nevre be done, because I'll always be finding new art and frames or knickknacks to rotate around. 
But over Memorial Day Weekend, I took a frame that was falling apart (remember the same one I used to complete the jewelry box) and made two more irregularly shaped frames for the wall- one's that have been sitting up there as a weird piece of paper taped to the wall since last summer!!
One for the lyrics to Let it Be, something I've had printed out and taped to various walls since high school,
And another for a map of the Seattle neighborhoods.
Here are a few more close ups:
Those are the lyrics from our first wedding dance song, with our names and date in the middle.
And here's a print I ordered months ago from Jenna Sue Designs, more Seattle map goodness!  I also bought a world map from Jenna Sue:
Over here we've got a Dumbledore quote, an ampersand, some peacock feathers,
A homemade exclamation mark that I don't love, place holder keys for one I finally get my hands on a set of antique keys to hang, and a "t" blown up from a magazine article about Elizabeth Taylor (T for Tim, obviously).
Up top we've got my favorite naked lady picture- I hung this up almost as a joke when I first started organizing the wall, but I proceeded to frame this picture before anything else!  I've had it in my pile of magazine cut outs since high school; it's just such a freeing shot and not unlike poses I've struck before ;)
And here it all is together:
Let's hop over to the bedroom for a second and look at another Jenna Sue print I ordered:
Oh goodness don't you just love that wall color??
Anyway, here's an adorable love birds print that I hung next to some more initial art that my co-worker made for me.  That's a G for Tim's last name with a little poem next to it!  

So what do you think??

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Call Me Maybe!

So much hilarity on the web this week!!



Spanish Tapas Dinner Party

Dinner parties!!  They're so much fun!  I love to gather all my current favorite recipes and newly acquired skills and put them to good use!  Last year, Tim and I had just taken a bar-tending class so we made drinks from scratch.  This year, we recently took a Spanish Tapas cooking class at Hipcooks as part of our year full of dates!

The class was SO much fun!  If they weren't so pricey, we'd be taking them a lot more!  I snagged a Groupon deal for this class for half off! 
This must be why Tim calls me a messy cook!
So we made the olives, nuts, and hummus as appetizers for our dinner party!!  They were all so simple but looks so amazing in their serving dishes!  And, I made most of it days in advance!

Marinated Olives:  All I did was combine some queens, kalamatas, and regular green olives with some minced garlic, a touch of olive oil, chopped parsley, and lemon rinds.  Then they sat in the fridge for days to absorb the flavor.













Candied Nuts: I just picked up a bag of unsalted mixed nuts from the store, and simple sauteed them with brown sugar, vegan butter, more parsley and a touch of salt and hot sauce.  After they cooled in a single layer in the freezer, I broke them apart and stored them in a air tight container until the party!













Spanish Hummus: All you do here is use your food processor to smooth a can of chickpeas, a clove of garlic, the juice of one lemon, sea salt, parsley, and about a tablespoon of ground cumin!  Sooo yummy!  Sprinkle paprika on the top to serve!

I learned in class that Mediterranean hummus is so tangy because of the tahini sauce that's added, while Spanish hummus doesn't contain that.  I'm so glad I learned that, because it's the tahini that I don't like in hummus! 

The best part of the night, however, were the cupcakes.  Oh. My. Goodness.  I made Chef Chloe's Chocolate Strawberry Shortcakes recipe, the first one to win the Cupcake Wars for her, and omg people- these are the best cupcakes in the world!
My dad actually ate three at dinner, while almost everyone else had two.  And then I had another later...and made a second batch in the morning...you know, because I had so much leftover frosting, I needed to!



And because I seem to never be able to post a blog with fewer than 1000 pictures, here are a few more from the party!





Here's that fun new chalkboard, being useful as a menu board!

Have any of you made any fun recipes lately?