Goodbye winter, hello spring!

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I know it’s only February but I could NOT wait another few days, let alone, few weeks to start my spring wreath.  Enough of the cold weather, boo on the frigid polar vortex; I’m ready for colorful springtime buds and tepid air temps!

I used a craft wreath from my local craft store, wrapped it with a gorgeous burlap ribbon with lace trim and hot glued the heck out of some coral and pink floral pick stems.  I love my little pink bird nestled in the hydrangea!

Hope this brings some spring joy to you today!

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A simple dessert – Italian style

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Good (freezing) day to you all from the frigid Northeast!  It may be too cold to do much of anything but hunker down and “weather the storm” so to speak, but even the negative wind chills won’t dampen my incurable sweet tooth.  A warm, drizzled custard sauce poured over fresh, tart berries…now doesn’t that just make your toes tingle?

Zabaglione.  Yes, that’s it.  A dessert that starts with a Z.  For the love of all things sweet and pure, how did I not know about this before?  There are several great recipes online, but this is similar to the one we made.  3 simple ingredients and boy, do they pack a punch.  I could swim in this stuff…fresh, fluffy egg yolks with wine and sugar…this is what dreams are made of!  At least mine.  :)  And look how pretty the presentation is; even with a side dose of Vitamin C from the berries to balance out the guilt from eating something so decadent.  Can’t get much better than that.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/zabaglione-recipe.html

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Oh my ganache!

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Happy Valentine’s Day to you all out there!  Check out what I just made (and ate for lunch)… Chocolate Black Bean Flourless Cake with Dark Chocolate Ganache.  Oh my.  I’m still on a chocolate high, but wow, did this turn out great!

I hope all your chocolate dreams come true today – enjoy!

Chocolate Black Bean Flourless Cake

1 can plain black beans, (rinsed)

6 tb coconut oil (or butter)

5 eggs

1 tb vanilla extract

1/2 ts salt

3/4 sugar (I used raw )

6 tb cocoa powder

1 ts baking powder

1/2 ts baking soda

1 tb water

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9″ pan.  I used a 9 x 13 for a thinner cake.  Beat coconut oil in a bowl and add 2 eggs, beating well.  Put the beans, 3 eggs, vanilla and sugar into a food processor or blender (I used my nutribullet which worked!) and process until smooth.  Add this mixture to the coconut oil mix, beating well.  Then, beat in the remaining ingredients, dry ingredients first and then add the water.  Beat until smooth.

Pour into the cake pan and bake about 30-35 min.  Allow to cool before topping with the ganache, or don’t and eat it like molten lava, as I did.

Dark Chocolate Ganache

8 oz dark chocolate chips

2 tb butter

1/2 cup whole milk or you can use heavy cream and skip the butter (just adding 2 tb to the 1/2 c)

Melt butter in milk over low heat.  Add chocolate chips and stir until all melted.  Enjoy over your cake or by the spoonful.

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Happy rest of your weekend!

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enjoy every day

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enjoy every day

How did you wake up today?  With fear or dread?  Or with hope and peace in your heart?  I felt compelled to create this today and share with you after having an interesting conversation with a coworker this morning.  She told me that she’s retiring after working for 27 years at the same company and my heart about broke when she said, “it’s been 27 years of hell”.  Now I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to spend my precious 40 hour work week wishing it was Saturday and counting down the days until Friday comes again.

We have 2 choices to ponder when we find ourselves dissatisfied in our career/work life.  We can either find peace amidst our circumstances and make the best of it, or we can make a change.  No one else can do it for you!  If you find yourself staying in a job because the dress code is relaxed, or they have free breakfast every Friday, but yet have a restless spirit the other 90% of the time, then it’s time to make a change!  I always love the quote, “bloom where you’re planted”, but sometimes we can’t bloom because we’re not getting watered. <3

Today is the only Tuesday, February 10th, 2015, that you will ever have.  And maybe today is the day that you put on your big girl or boy pants on and commit to creating a life you love.  It all starts with one small step.

music and nature

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I haven’t been hiding from you lately, but rather, working on a great “reveal” to share with you next week so stay tuned!

However, today I had an overwhelming thought to put this gorgeous photo taken in the beautiful Colorado Rockies, together with a thought that came to my mind after listening to some music.  I happened to be listening to a new, very ethereal song by my favorite electronic musician and felt the music wash over me, taking me to a place of peace.

I hope music does the same thing for you.  It’s unexplainable how it has the power to evoke emotions and feelings at the drop of a hat.  Be it the first song you danced with your husband to, or the exquisite notes strung together in a Mozart aria, I dare to say it is one of the most amazing gifts we humans have the privilege of experiencing.  I feel God’s presence in music, do you?

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first 5 minute project of the year

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Let’s hear it for packing tape!  You’ll see why in a minute.  I was so excited after receiving this glorious fabric from a friend to use it to recover something and after searching around the house a bit, I found the perfect item; an old step ladder.  It was pretty gnarly, so I cleaned it up and was ready to recover the foam.  Then, disaster struck as I went through the whole garage, top to bottom looking for the staple gun and some gorilla glue.  No luck!  So, being the thrifty and creative woman she is, my mom came over and suggested using duct tape or packing tape.  It worked!  It will be great, maybe not long term, but for now, it’s holding nicely.  I just wrapped the foam like a package and taped ‘er down!

Voila!  A new step ladder!  Kinda. ;)

 

Before:

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After:

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