Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tippy Tuesday

I know I said that I would be debuting the pics from our Christmas photo shoot today, but I just mailed out my Christmas cards yesterday and I want to allow enough time for everyone to get my card before I post our pics.  

So to hold y'all over another week, here is another Christmas themed pic...which I believe is totally Christmas card worthy.  I love this so much!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Tippy Tuesday

It was a VanHoose Christmas on Saturday!  Yep, my dad's side of the family got together and we had our family Christmas.  My cousin Stephenia missed Tippy's birthday in September so she got her this beautiful Christmas dress as a belated birthday present. 

Psst....Tippy and I are having are Christmas pictures done this Thursday so next week I will debut the outtakes photos.  :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Cooking Challenge...Pinterest Style: Cheesy Quinoa Mac & Cheese

I'm back with another Pinterst recipe!  This time, I tried out the Cheesy Quinoa Mac & Cheese that came from this website.


In the recipe, she said you could use veggies of your choice which were optional.  I'm pretty picky when it comes to my veggies so I opted to use green peppers, red peppers, banana peppers and a few jalapenos.  I have been on this huge jalapeno kick lately!  And I was recently introduced to banana peppers and became pretty fond of them as well so I bought some for myself, which raised this question:  Are banana peppers a type of pickle?  First of all, I found the banana peppers with the pickles.  Then when I got home and opened the jar, they smelled like pickles.  I don't like pickles so I didn't know if I picked up the wrong kind of banana peppers or what.  I would love to know.

After I sauteed my veggies, I followed the rest of the recipe and came out with this. 

Now.....does that look anything like that ooey-gooey goodness in the first picture?  No.  Mine did not turn out cheesy at all and was more cake-like.  And the fact that the word "cheese" is in the title not once but twice is hilarious to me.  I don't understand what is it with me and cooking?  Why does it never turn out the way it's supposed to?  Or should I say What ingredient did I leave out this time?

With that said, I pulled out my trusty rating scale:

1 - Dear recipe, RIP. Laters, Shari
2 - I'll cook it again....if I'm cooking for someone I don't like.
3 - Eh, if I already have the ingredients, I may whip it up.
4 - I like you, but I'm not in love with you.
5 - Get in my belly!

I give the Cheesy Quinoa Mac & Cheese a.......2.5

I may try it again but add more cheese or something!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A special YouTube Message to Britney Spears

I meant to post this on Sunday when I uploaded this to YouTube, but hey....better late than never.

2012 Christmas Ornament Exchange: Rustic Chalkboard Ornament

Well, I did it.  I did my very first ornament exchange!  Dana from Crafted Niche organized the whole sha-bang and it was super fun!  I'm not sure if she did it on purpose but she paired me up with someone whose decorating style was completely different from mine!  When we signed up we had to describe our style and any other information you thought they should know.  I said that my style was glam and my exchange buddy, Steph from Salem, MA, was rustic.  I will say that it was fun to do something different so I'm glad it worked out that way.  

Steph also mentioned that she had a 4 year old son so she said she was open to anything that would be fun for him too.  My mind immediately went to chalkboard paint.  I went to Hobby Lobby with a general plan and picked up some chalkboard paint and this round piece of wood.

After I painted the front side with 2-3 thin coats, I let it dry for a full 24 hours and pulled out my paints so that I could give the back side a couple of coats of red paint since I didn't want it to look unfinished.

Once that dried really well, I folded some ribbon in a loop and attached it to the back, folding the raw edges underneath so it didn't show.

That was the easy part!  Here is where I struggled a bit.  I knew I wanted to line the outside of the ornament with sticks to give it that rustic effect but I couldn't decide how I was going to place them.  First I thought I would take really thin sticks and lay them flat all around the ornament but then I had a better idea.  I'm sure you've seen in decor where people are slicing logs and branches and stacking them with the insides facing out so that it looks like artwork.  You don't?  Oh, well here are a couple of examples to show you.


And this one makes me say Oh Em Geeee.  Excuse me while I wipe the drool off my mouth.


Brilliant! (I said in my best British accent.)  So I gathered a bunch of sticks from outside and stuck them in the freezer for about 7 hours.  Supposedly, that's what you're supposed to do if you use anything from outside.  It's supposed to kill anything that's living inside them.  Lovely thought, I know.  I sliced the stick until I got a really pretty inside.  Please excuse the manicure, or lack thereof.  

My idea was to slice them about 1/2-1 inch thick and line them around the perimeter.  Well my crappy bush trimming shears weren't doing the trick.  Actually, it was doing a trick.  It was splitting the wood in half like you'd see a magician splitting a human in half.  Womp, womp.  On to plan C.

I ended up cutting up two different colors of sticks and laying them around the perimeter, alternating the colors of the sticks and attaching them with my handy dandy glue gun.  And yes, i was doing this while watching Glee. 

Once I got them all in place, I was still worried that the sticks would fall off so I went around the back of it with my glue gun just to make sure it wasn't going anywhere.

After all that was done, I decided to give it a whirl on my own tree to see how it looked.  It was a little bigger than I hoped it would be but you gotta have plenty of room to draw!  Also, it was a bit heavy but once I tucked it in the limbs a bit, it worked just fine!

Hold up!  I'm not done yet.  Actually I lied earlier.  I said figuring out the branch issue was the hard part.  Let me take that back.  Finding chalk was the hard part! Never in my life did I ever imagine that finding plain, white teacher chalk would be so difficult!  I went to WalMart...no chalk.  I went to the Dollar Tree...no chalk.  I went to the Dollar General...no chalk.  Finally, I went to the place that I should've gone to in the first place...Hobby Lobby.  Actually, I did go there first but to buy the other stuff for the ornament.  Not chalk.  Doh!

Once I finally got the chalk, I took it home and treated the front side by laying the chalk on its side and covering the entire area.  I erased it and wrote this on it.  I figured her little boy could count down to Christmas, draw pictures on it, or write some festive messages. 

I couldn't send the ornament without any chalk...heaven forbid I send them on a wild goose chalk-chase!  So I took some Velcro and attached a small piece of chalk to the back of it and wrote on the back.  

So since this is an "exchange" I have to take the time to show you what I received!  After anxiously checking the mail every day like a crazy person, it came!  

Isn't it sooo cute??  I told her I was incorporating peacock feathers into my decor and she made me peacock ornament!  Oh, and blinged it out!  Thanks, Steph.....I love it!  And thanks, Dana for hosting the exchange.  If y'all want to, hop on over to Crafted Niche and check out all of the other ornaments people made!

Tippy Tuesday

One thing Tippy hates is when I'm watching basketball games....especially when the Cats are losing.  My language and tourettes-like outbursts make Tippy super nervous.  This is a great example of Tippy throughout the entire game....just imagine her also shaking.