Fall Apothecary

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Fall is my VERY favorite holiday.  It started getting cool here last week but of course, it didn’t stay that way. Still, just the fact that I got to pull on my tall boots this weekend and turn on the heater (for a brief 2 hours) makes me get in the Fall decorating mood!  Meet my easy, peasy new Fall decoration… My Fall Apothecary Jar


My best friend got me this glass jar for my birthday, last year. It sits on my entry table in the foyer.   I like to keep it filled with seasonal things and I also like the way it looks empty too.



I found this great vase filler at Target.  It was $9.99 and it smells divine!  The cinnamon sticks were definitely the persuading factor in this purchase.  I love using cinnamon sticks for decor in the fall.  They make your house smell great and they look seasonal, if that makes sense.  You can grab a handful of cinnamon sticks, place them in a mason jar and add it to your mantel or a side table and you have an instant fall upgrade.


Here’s a look at the apothecary jar at Christmas.  I guess that will be it’s next big transformation on December 1st!


Chicken Scallopine

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I love and adore Ree Drummond! She is so awesome.  I have made so many of her recipes and they always turn out amazing.  This is another one of those great ones.  Here’s a link to the official recipe…

Chicken Scallopine by Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman




Thank you, Ree, for another great one!



Starbucks To-Go Cups

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This week’s Favorite Friday #5 is Starbucks To-Go Cups.  Do you know about these?


They cost ONE DOLLAR!


I discovered them about 18 months ago and I have washed them over and over again in the dishwasher and they never start leaking or get warped, like so many other plastic cups do!


I always grab a couple of extra sleeves when I’m at Starbucks because these are a must-have with these particular cups.  They get REAL hot.


The new fall sleeves are adorable too.


I get nothing for sharing this favorite with you, by the way. It’s just my favorite thing of the week.

Happy Friday, Y’all!

Pudding Cookies

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Who would’ve thought that adding pudding to a cookie recipe could change it so much?  These are chewy and amazing!  I’m super excited to have found this little secret.

1 c. (room-temperature) butter

3/4 c. brown sugar

1/4 c. sugar

1 (3.4 oz) pkg instant vanilla pudding

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. baking soda

2 1/4 c. flour

2 c. chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Sift together flour and baking soda.  In a separate bowl, mix butter and sugars together, then add the pudding mix.  Stir in the eggs, one at a time, then add vanilla.  Now, blend in the flour mixture and fold in the chocolate chips.  Drop by spoonfuls onto un-greased cookie sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes.  Enjoy!

The Perfect Jo-Jo Bar Stools

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Meet my new bar stools…


When I found out I was going to have seating for 4 at the new kitchen island, I immediately started looking for super cool bar stools.  You know the kind of stool that has the barn wood seat and an industrial metal base?

From Fixer Upper on HGTV – click photo for link

A local furniture store had some really cool stools (similar to the ones pictured above) but they were going to require 8-10 weeks for delivery so I AXED that idea!

I was looking everywhere online too.  I was being super picky and I was trying to also stick to my budget (since I’ve fallen off the budget train too many times to count ALREADY).  Some of the stools were too clunky at the bottom or they were the complete opposite and didn’t have a place to rest your feet at all.  Some of them had all this decorative junk on them, like metal studs going around the wood seat.  If this is your thing, then there is a link to that particular stool, just click photo below.  It just doesn’t match the style of my kitchen.

I really just wanted to call up Jo-Jo and ask her where she finds all those awesome stools for her homes on Fixer Upper. If only, I could just call up Jo-Jo.  Sigh.

Without Jo-Jo’s help, it was up to me alone and I think I found the perfect stool.  I am getting nothing for telling you this either.  I really, truly love Wayfair.  So, here’s my stool choice.


It’s from Wayfair (obviously) and it’s called “Akron Adjustable Height Bar Stool”.

Click photo (below) for the link.

I am so happy with my decision.  The tops of these stools are fairly rough and some reviewers complained about it, some said they even sanded them down a little.  Personally, I love the way the seats look, just like they are.  They have a rustic, old barn-wood feel about them.  Very cool… very cool.



Thanks for letting me share!

French Press Iced Coffee

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Happy National Coffee Day!  Oh, how I love Coffee but oh, how I LOVE French Press Coffee EVEN MORE!  It is soooooooooo good.  It’s good hot and it’s good cold.  We are going to start this post with a little lesson on how to make the best French Press Coffee.

First of all, let’s talk about good coffee beans and coffee… I love and prefer Dunkin Donuts brand coffee.  I brew it in my Bunn at home and I use it in my Keurig too.  You can use ANY coffee in this recipe.  Just remember that if you grind your own beans, don’t get them too finely ground.  They will seep through the strainer in the press.

Step 1 – Boil 5 cups of water


Step 2 – Grind your coffee or use pre-ground coffee.

Step 3 – Remove the plunger part of your French Press and set it aside.

Step 4 – Place 6 Tablespoons of that ground up coffee into the bottom of your French Press.


Step 5 – Pour 4 cups of boiling water into the ground up coffee in your French Press (or until almost completely full)



Step 6 – Insert plunger, like it’s a lid, sitting on top of the filled press.


Step 7 – Let coffee sit and brew for 5 minutes.


Step 8 – Slowly, oh so slowly, press the plunger down to the bottom of the press pot.


Step 9 – Let it sit for 1 additional minute.

That’s how you make a delicious cup of French Pressed Coffee.

Now, let’s talk about French Press Iced Coffee!  It is important for you to have STRONG coffee in any iced coffee recipe.  That’s why French Press works so well.  It has a certain richness that isn’t bitter, if you know what I mean!

To make delicious Iced Coffee…

Step 1 – Make French Pressed Coffee, as shown in the above recipe.

Step 2 – Pour 1-2 tablespoons of raw sugar into the cup.


Step 3 – Pour 2/3 cup of warm pressed coffee into cup on top of the raw sugar.  Stir to dissolve.



Step 4 – Add 2/3 cup of fat-free half and half.


Step 5 – Stir and add ice to fill.


Adjust sugar and cream, to your taste.


Now, can we just talk about this cute cup?

It’s glass, with a lid.  I found it at Home Goods for 3 Bucks!  Woohoo!

Apple Cinnamon Quinoa

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It’s officially Fall so this recipe seems fitting.  I am sharing it from MY food blog, Slice of Sassy.  I love Quinoa.  I like the texture and the nuttiness of it but some are not fans (my husband, for instance).  This recipe makes enough to feed two people so I stick one serving back in the fridge and reheat the next day.  I think it might taste even better on day two.  Another interesting fact about Quinoa – my oldest daughter loves to call it “KIN-OH-UH” just to drive me nuts.  In case you thought that’s the correct way to say it, let me help…  “Keen-Wha” is the correct pronunciation :)

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
3/4 cup coconut milk
2 tsp. vanilla flavoring
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 apple sliced and lightly broiled
1/4 c. pecans, toasted
2 tbsp. brown sugar

Place pecans and apples on shallow baking sheet. Sprinkle with brown sugar and place under low broiler until pecans and apples are lightly toasted.

Meanwhile, combine quinoa, coconut milk, cinnamon and vanilla in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
Reduce to simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes.

Divide quinoa into two bowls for serving.
Sprinkle with cooked pecans and apples.
Drizzle additional coconut milk or sprinkled cinnamon on quinoa, if desired.
Serves 2.

Banana Pancake Recipe & A Song

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Hello and Happy Friday!  It’s Friday Favorite #4 and today I’m sharing one of my favorite recipes – Banana Pancakes.  It just so happens to be National Pancake Day tomorrow, so it’s the perfect time to talk about my family’s favorite breakfast!


Recipe Ingredients:

1 cup AP Flour

1 tbsp Sugar

2 tsp Baking Powder

1/4 tsp Salt

1 egg

1 cup Milk

2 tbsp Melted Butter

2 Mashed Bananas

First thing, get your griddle going by setting the temperature to medium high.  Mix all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, mix together your wet ingredients, including the bananas.  Now combine the two.  Lightly butter your griddle and pour about 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake.  When they start getting bubbles on top and they aren’t runny, it’s time to turn them over.  Serve with fresh sliced bananas and maple syrup.  This recipe makes 10-12 pancakes.

Let’s don’t forget about the delicious Homemade Maple Syrup – click photo for link to recipe…

Have you ever heard the song, “Banana Pancakes” by Jack Johnson? It is an awesome song!!!

Seriously. Awesome. Dance. Around. The. Kitchen. SONG.

Warning – it will make you want to cook some pancakes.  Lucky for you, you now have the best recipe!

Here’s a link to the song Banana Pancakes, just because I love you that much!

Happy Friday, Y’all!





New Finished Kitchen Photos

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I’m so thrilled to tell you that the kitchen remodel is finished.  I am so happy with how every single thing turned out!  It is officially my favorite room that I’ve ever decorated or designed.  If you want to look back at the details of the remodel, here’s the link… Demolition and Remodel.

Here’s a before photo:

See, why I’m so excited over the transformation?


This is the old section of the kitchen.  I painted these cabinets and then had the new pantry cabinets built to match.  They also built that cabinet over and around the refrigerator.  Didn’t they do an amazing job making it match the older cabinets?  Here’s the post about painting those cabinets with complete tutorial directions… Painting the Kitchen Cabinets


We ran a gas line under the concrete foundation (quite an undertaking).  By “we”, of course you know I had nothing to do with that but write a check, right?  I am in love with the new gas range.  It has a downdraft that lifts out of the island.  I should have photographed that too.  Oops.  It’s super cool!



This is the new wall that was installed.  The brick travertine tile matches the other kitchen wall (the original kitchen area).  Again, they did a perfect job matching it!  I went with a different cabinet color here to match the island and I used the granite that matched the original kitchen on the other side.  The granite on the island is “leathered”. It has a very matte finish. LOVE!


Thanks to my BFF (Lilya) for coming over and helping me strategically place all my white dishes in the glass cabinets.  That was a fun, late, late night!


These are the new pantry cabinets.  They match the old style cabinets.  Love the space!


We changed out all the doors to 5-Panel Equal doors. I wanted to add a little old style to the modern mix.


Yep, that’s a tv in the top right corner.  It’s so fun to watch cooking shows while I cook!  From this angle, you can see the original kitchen cabinets along with the new pantry and how well they match.


I got the barstools at Wayfair.  LOVE!  As you can barely see in this photo, the eat in area is open to the kitchen too.


And that’s it, folks.  Thanks for letting me share my latest project!