Wordless Wednesday 10.31.12

The weather has finally turned in Florida and baby, it’s cold outside!

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Sneak Peek

I mentioned that I was up to my eyeballs in DIY projects.. I’m getting to a point where I can see the light at the end of the tunnel for some of it. Here’s a sneak peek into what I’ve been working on.

Three projects I’ve got going on right now that are ALMOST ready for unveiling.

And then the other part that’s super exciting is that I have found SO many great DIY Christmas ideas.. not the cheaping out DIY ideas that just get me out of Christmas shopping with the mobs of crazies (I’ve figured out how to do all my Christmas shopping on Cyber Monday from my computer on my couch anyway 🙂 ).. but the kind that is super personal and unique! I’m so excited!

First Christmas present to arrive!

I’m the worst at taking on too  many projects at one time.. is that how you handle them too? With the invention and craze over Pinterest, I imagine that may be how it is for a lot of people… or women anyway. 🙂

A Balanced Weekend

Happy Monday all!

Seems like every time you turn around, the weekend’s over and it’s already Monday- doesn’t it? I can’t complain, I had a really good & very balanced weekend. I’m a Libra & totally buy into all of the attributes of my sign – when life is balanced, I’m much happier all around. My sign is the scales, after all!

It helps that my weekend was a 3-day weekend. Inspired by A Beautiful Mess Blog, I decided that I should go thrifting more often. I’m up to my eyeballs in DIY & Pinterest projects and keep picking up new things to start the next one.. meaning I have lots of halfway finished things around the house right now. But, if you’re trying to decorate and enrich a space – thrifting can give you ideas and you can find some treasures on the cheap!

One of my favorite shops in Riverside in Jacksonville, Florida.

After perusing some of the local vintage-inspired shops, we wandered into a few antique shops.

One of our favorites in town is called Avonlea. It’s got several sections and has sections that are owned by different people, so it’s a very eclectic mix.

I love the bottles. Different colors, different shapes and sizes.. I just love displays like this.

So stinkin cute & handmade!

 

Because there are different sections facilitated by different owners who pay for the space (kind of like a flea market), all of the items aren’t your typical old/vintage type things. This particular section was handmade, sewn and completely adorable!

I did purchase a few items.. a few pieces for our home, a Christmas present.. it was so productive! More about that later though.

After about 5 hours of shopping around, we were pretty tired and headed home to cat nap. After the cat nap I got up and got dressed to go back out because one of my FAVORITE bands was playing our local university. I’m a mix of things most of the time, and this band certainly falls into that. While I’m mostly jamming to country/classic rock/alternative types of sounds.. 3Oh!3 is probably best known for their song Don’t Trust Me. It’s a little profane, but overall pretty fantastic. Here’s a peek at another of my favorites by them:

Double Vision

Concert poster

Saturday was the laziest day I’ve had in a while. I woke up, sat on the couch with the boyfriend and proceeded to go get back in bed with my pups until the Florida Georgia game came on, around 3:30 in the afternoon. That part, I don’t want to talk any more about.. It was a pretty messy game, with a pretty undesirable ending. We’ll get ’em next time.

Sunday morning we woke up early and took the pups to the park so they could stretch their legs and play. The weather is finally getting cooler here in Florida and Sunday was b-e-a-utiful. I dropped by my mom’s house & ended up washing my car while the pups sunbathed, so we’ve already covered relaxing, playing, and productivity all by 11 a.m.

After the car was shining, I headed back home. The boy & I speed cleaned the house and I lit the smell goods while we attacked the laundry. My house is always filled with the best aromas – I have 2 tart burners (one in the living room and one in our bedroom) and buy wax tarts [in large quantities] from Southern Belle Scents to burn. Our house was bursting with scents of vanilla, cinnamon and cloves – perfect for fall! [I burn these during summer too because they’re intoxicating!]

After I put dinner on the table, it was time to get ready for ANOTHER concert. Completely opposite end of the spectrum, I met up with a couple of my favorite girl friends & we hit the best country bar in town for Eli Young Band.

Mavericks is filled with chandeliers like this one, it’s fantastic.

Love these ladies

 

While I woke up a little tired this morning [let’s face it, I always wake up tired EVERY morning], my soul feels refreshed and my heart feels light & even though it’s Monday, after a cup of coffee I was ready to get to it. There’s something to be said for live music and for spending time doing things that make you happy, just because.

Hope you all had just as wonderful of a weekend & here’s to a wonderful week!

Recipe Rave: Make at home fajitas!

We’re closing in on the week-end, friends!

Today I wanted to share my adventure with making fajitas AT HOME! Mexican is one of my favorite go-to type foods and one of my staples when I eat out. Last Sunday afternoon, I decided to go ahead and dive in and attempt to make one of our favorites at home to enjoy.

First I browsed Pinterest and googled fajita recipes and found 2 that I liked. I took pieces from each recipe, one from Simply Recipes viewable here and 100 Days of Real Food Blog viewable here.

I cheated a little and used Tyson frozen steak strips and chicken. We were STARVING and this was the quickest way to get things cooking. So, I thawed the meat in a bowl of water while I prepped the rest.

I prepared the marinade for the meat, taken from the Simply Recipes version.

Marinade:

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

But I added Emeril’s Essence from the 100 Days of Real Food Blog. Since I didn’t have an actual bottle of Emeril’s essence on hand, I googled it and made my own.

Emeril’s Essence Ingredients:

8 tablespoons paprika
3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
5 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons garlic powder
3 tablespoons onion powder
6 tablespoons salt
2 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 1/2 tablespoons dried thyme

I pared this down a bit because I was making fajitas for 2, not an entire bottle of that stuff. I do have some extra for next time though!

So while my meat thawed a bit, I prepped this spice mix and got the marinade ingredients ready in a gallon plastic bag. I then chopped a red bell pepper (next time I would use more than 1, or add a yellow bell pepper as well) and an entire onion into strips.

I got all of the toppings ready while I let the meat marinate for added flavor. I chopped red onion and tomato, the boyfriend chopped up lettuce. We set out a jar of salsa and sour cream and of course a bowl of shredded cheese. Once we had completed all of the prep, it was time to start cooking.

First, I cooked the meat.  Heat your pan with some olive oil (we use EVOO in our house for everything we cook) and toss your meat until it browns and is nice and hot. Since mine was the precooked, frozen type – it didn’t take too long. If you’re using raw meat and fully preparing the entire meal from scratch at home, allow yourself some time to cook your meat all the way without rushing it and burning it.

After the meat was cooked, I covered it in tin foil to keep it warm. Next was time to cook the peppers and onions. I cleaned my pan first because there was alot of that black gunk in the bottom, but if you keep a better eye on your meat than I did, you should be able to cook your veggies without rinsing your pan and transfer some of that flavor over to the veggies too.

You’d never know this was frozen meat, once you add your spices.

All the fixins

Yummy make at home fajitas!

Let’s eat!

We sat down for a belly-stretching mouth watering meal. Next time I’ll definitely double up and make extra so that we have leftovers because this was DELISH.

Happy Friday!

So the stakes are high..

Well it’s Monday, again.

Monday means the beginning of a new work week [for most] and, if nothing else, drives you to do SOMETHING to be productive. Weekends are for being lazy, relaxing, etc. Mondays are for work.

So, that being said, I’ve been thinking about an important concept here lately. Most of us expect so much from ourselves and don’t allow ourselves to obtain the tools to do the job right. Much of this concept centers around money and guilt. I can relate, I’ve been obsessively trying to pay down some credit cards and get back on track by putting some money into savings, all the while try to build an online presence for myself in *hopes* of finding a full time job that will allow me some financial relief/peace of mind. But I’m still trying to utilize my free time in decorating our house and making it our home. I’m realizing that, with my recent 25th birthday, I am not letting myself BE the person I can be because I’m limiting myself by feeling guilty about spending any money at all on myself for things that I need or tools that I could greatly benefit from.

ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE YOUR BEST SELF

I’m not saying toss your good sense out of the window and go empty your bank account, charge up those cards and fill your car with purchases. But if there are legitimate things that you need or things that would help you work harder – those might be worth buying, and viewed as investments.

Money invested in yourself, is money well spent.

You also need to know yourself. Me, I’m a list maker. For every thing I do, everywhere I go, every project I take on.. there’s a list.

Blog post planning list

Immediate running to-do list that sits on my desk

Current meal options after our latest grocery trip

to-do list on my phone

I know I think in lists. Since I’m a girl, I like pattern and color. Why not give yourself the colorful, pretty, creative options to do the work that needs to be done? I know I have to have lists, so I give myself lots of different ways to keep lists to stay on top of everything going on.

I should probably say that I ADORE pattern and color. Your life and the things you use [to do work or to play] don’t have to be cookie cutter and dull.

My power organization tools

Take a little time, add a little TLC, and maybe spend the extra couple dollars if it’ll lift your mood and inspire some creativity.

After all, it’s the details that matter.

Happy Monday!