The Garden, Raised Beds, & The Fiancé

Side Garden 1 Well, we finally got around to planting our garden for the year. Thank goodness we have a long growing season in California, or my plants would never get to produce! In addition to the two raised garden beds we have at the side of our house, this year we have added a large raised bed along the back of the garage. This raised bed is small part of our yard remodel project. We are working to re-do the front, back, and side yards. We have a bit of yard on all sides of the house, and it all was/is a mess! The side yard seemed like the easiest to tackle first. Continue reading

Dog Paperwork Organization

2014 started off with a very exciting event, The Boyfriend and I adopted a puppy on New Years Day! Her name is Hailey’s Comet (we just call her Hailey, and yes we know it’s spelled wrong!) and she was brought into our local animal shelter as a stray. We don’t know exactly what she is a mix of, but German Shepard, Beagle, Terrier, Doberman, and Rotweiller have all been suggested. She’s already almost six months old, and weighs 27 pounds. As with any new puppy, it’s been both exciting and exhausting!

Haileys Comet

Of course, with a new dog comes a bunch of stuff. A crate, beds, toys, treats, and paperwork. I wanted to organize the dog’s paperwork in a way that kept it together but also portable, in case we need to take anything to the vet, doggy day care, etc. Continue reading

Tomato Sauce from Scratch (or not)

One of the last food projects I took on before the kitchen demolition was to make tomato sauce from scratch. My tomato plants decided to explode in November, partly because of weird fall weather we had. So, i had a TON of tomatoes and with no way we could eat them all. The best part, is that I froze the extra sauce (there was a lot!) so we have some deliciousness while we have no kitchen. The sauce part of the recipe is inspired by my Dad’s tomato sauce recipe, which was my FAVORITE as a kid (and still is). Yum!


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Christmas Update – Are You Ready?


Yes, the star is supposed to be crooked. The top branch hangs a sharp left. So, we named our tree “Ol’ Crooked Top”

I think I’ve done it! I’ve managed to de-stress our Christmas preparations as much as possible. Oh wait…. while I de-stressed Christmas we also decided to start our kitchen remodel (more on that soon).

However, we would never have been able to really start our big remodel project if it weren’t for me taking the Christmas Pledge.
I pledged to be done preparing for Christmas by December 8th. Really, I did a couple things on December 9th, but who’s counting! Ok, yes I was counting and all of you were counting but what’s a day between friends? (maybe I’m not as de-stressed as I thought…) Continue reading

How to Clean a Hairbrush


After cleaning. Shiny and new!

Like most people with longer hair, I shed a LOT. This results in clogged up hair brushes, drains and messy floors. Drains are too gross to post pictures, and floors are easy to sweep up, so I wanted to talk about hair brushes. Keeping my hairbrush clean and free(ish) of hair really makes a difference in my hair’s shine (who knew?). Now, because I was waiting to do a post on how to clean a hairbrush, I did wait longer than normal to clean my brush out. I don’t usually let it get this bad! The process is pretty straightforward…

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Quick Detail: Squeeze that Make-Up


I HATE wasting things, and so I always try to get the very last drop out of bottles, tubes and other disposable containers. One of the very best ways I’ve found to get all the product I can out of tubes is to use a toothpaste squeezer. Beside toothpaste (obviously), I also use them on make-up. If I’m going to splurge a bit on make-up I’m going to use it all!

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Chicken and Dumplings


Mmmm… brains!

After successfully making chicken stock I was pretty proud of myself! My next task was to use it on a good recipe. I choose to make chicken and dumplings. It’s one of my favorites, since it minds me of Girl Scout camp. The first time I had it I was sitting around a campfire, while the counselors taught us how to cook outside. The recipe I make now I adapted from a Williams Sonoma recipe (found here). In the past, I bought a good chicken stock from a health food store. The homemade is SO much better but using store bought does make the recipe go pretty quick. To be realistic, I’m guessing in the future I’ll probably only make chicken stock about half the time due to time. The Boyfriend LOVES this recipe & it’s great comfort food for fall. Plus, the dumplings look a little like brains, so it’s perfect for halloween! Continue reading

Chicken Stock

IMG_2845 I’ve never made chicken stock before, but was always interested in trying it. When I’m trying to make something for the first time, typically I search the internet for a few recipes I like and work from those. This recipe is a combination of about 4 different ones I liked. I have to say it was a success! Making chicken stock was pretty easy, and a great use for the leftovers after The Boyfriend made a fantastic beer can chicken the day before. The stock tasted so much better than store bought, we’ll definitely be doing this again!