Saturday, September 24, 2011

Orange Tofu

Sometimes, I miss certain foods from my pre-vegetarian days. Panda Express' Orange Chicken is one of those things. And sometimes, I figure out a way to have the next best thing. Enter Orange Tofu!

Essentially, I just make the tofu the way that I always do. And much like the Buffalo Tofu, I toss it in Panda Express' Orange Sauce (that I pick up from the grocery store) when it's done cooking. Pair it with some rice (which I also sometimes add a little bit of sauce to) & you've got an easy peasy meal!

Monday, September 19, 2011

L&L Auction Winner!

A giant thank you to those of you who bid in the auction to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society!

Jennifer Lamb was the big winner with her generous bid of $125! Jennifer, please e-mail me at to find out how to go about donating your bid & receiving your new afghan!

And if anyone else is interested in making a donation to the "Yes, I Am A Katelyn Friend!" Light the Night team, you can do so by clicking right here. Thanks again, friends! You all are the best!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

L&L Auction

Last year, friends & family of Katelyn, gathered together as a team to participate in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Light the Night walk in Chicago. The team is walking again this year & unfortunately, the hub & I won't be able to make it back to Illinois to participate this time.

But, friend & team member, Ashley Moffatt, asked me to lend a hand long distance & auction off a handmade afghan that she made to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

The details:
We're auctioning off a heavy, twin-size, crocheted granny square afghan with raised flowers. Ashley used Red Heart yarn in white, teal, dark pink, & a variegated yarn of those colors.

The auction will run through midnight on Sunday, September 18th, with the winner being announced the next day. To place your bid, just leave a comment on this post with the dollar amount & a way to contact you in case you win. Thanks, friends!

Happy bidding!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Thomas the Train

Our sweet nephew nephew turned 3 recently & we made him a little something to celebrate. If you happen to know a little one, who is a Thomas the Train fan, here's a fairly easy idea that's sure to result in plenty of playtime...

Step One: Get a sturdy cardboard box. Cut where needed to mimic the above shape & hot glue the top flap backwards.
Step Two: Paint! (The hub & I just used regular ol' craft paint)
Step Three: Get a canister of some kind that would make a good smokestack (we used an oatmeal canister). Paint it, glue cotton balls on top, & hot glue it securely to the top of the box.
Step Four: Find a picture of Thomas' face online & blow it up before printing. Cut it out & glue it to the front. (You can also print/paint a number on the side of the box, if you'd like.)
Step Five: Secure straps to the inside of the box so that your little one can put his/her arms through & "ride" the train!

Step Six: Persuade your little one to get inside the train & put his arms through the straps, instead of just pushing it around on the floor.

Step Seven: Convince your little one to share a new toy with his sibling.

The End!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Chair Makeovers

Before the hub & I made the big move from Michigan to Louisiana, we decided to sell most of our furniture/heavy stuff because once we had arrived, it would just be the two of us unloading the moving truck (& let's face it, I'm not very strong). Buuut, we didn't want that to mean that we wouldn't have anything to sit on once we had arrived. So, after selling a bulky couch, we went hunting for a pair of smaller, lightweight chairs that could take it's place.

We found just what we were looking for at a thrift store in town in these two bad boys. They conjure up an image of a doctor's waiting room, no? They were pretty beat up/gross, but we wanted to try our hand at fixing them up & at $1 each, there was little risk involved. So, we went for it!

After stripping all of the old upholstery/padding, we cleaned up the wooden base just a little bit by running a damp cloth over everything & sanding town a few spots that needed it. Then, we got to painting! We used a grey spray paint primer before painting it with two coats of a navy blue spray paint. Unfortunately, the color didn't end up as dark as we would have liked & we ended up priming & painting them a second time in a different color (scroll down to the end if you can't wait for the big reveal).

We used 2-inch padding, which we cut out & stapled to the seat & back of the chair. Note that the padding goes slightly around the front of the seat. Basically, we just made a mental note of how the padding was stapled in the chair's original form & tried our best to duplicate it.

This is what the bottom of one of the seats looked like when we were done with the padding. We did notice that some of the staples had popped through the padding and out the underside of the seat. So, we hammered them down wherever we found them so they wouldn't be sticking out.

And the top of the seat (better to overstaple than under!).

Next came the batting. In hindsight, we should have pulled it towards the center a bit more on the seats.

When the padding & batting was finished, this is what we had:
2 backs & 2 seats.

As was the case with the batting, we should have pulled the fabric further towards the center on the seats...lesson learned.

Once the fabric was stapled down, we stapled a square of interfacing on the underside of the seat to cover everything.

For the backs, I sewed a slipcover of sorts from the fabric, leaving the bottom open for stapling.

The first cushion is the top of the back. The second cushion is the bottom. After stapling the opening shut, it looked a little less than perfect. So, we measured out a strip of fabric, ironed down the edges & hot glued it in place. Totally not how it's supposed to be done, I know, but it worked (& since it's on the bottom, no one will see it anyway)! The two gatherings of the fabric at the bottom were intentional.

A closer look at the bottom & top of the back cushions.

After that, we reassembled them & were super happy with the end result!

As you can see, we decided to go with grey for the base, which worked out much better than the blue that clashed with the fabric. In the end, I'm glad that we invested the extra time in repainting it because it really works well with the new blue/grey/yellow color scheme in our living room.

And, that's it! We're just a pair of novices attempting reupholstery/refurbishing, but I'll go ahead & pat us on the back for this one because I think we did just fine. :)

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Hub's Couscous

The hub has pretty much perfected his couscous recipe and it is so, so yum that I just had to share it with you.

The Hub's Couscous
1 cup dried couscous
1 1/4 cups water
1 tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1 tbs. dried parsley flakes
1/2 chopped onion
1/4 tsp. dried basil
Pepper to taste
Dash of garlic powder
Cashews or some other nut (optional)
Directions: Add water, seasoned salt, basil, parsley, pepper, garlic powder, olive oil, and cashews to a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil. Add couscous. Remove from heat and cover. Let stand for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, saute chopped onions. When couscous is done, add onions, stir and serve. Enjoy!
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