Thursday, May 18, 2017

Tasty Ways to Enjoy Breakfast at Home

I love to cook for my family.  I enjoy watching my kids light up as they enjoy something I've made.  Helping my mom and dad out in the kitchen is where I first learned the basics.

Cooking gives me the chance to be creative.  I enjoy taking pictures of the meals I successfully created.  It's fun to look back!

Today I'm rounding up breakfast ideas and sharing some of my favorites.  Hopefully you'll be inspired to start your day off with one of these morning meals.
Sometimes simple is best!  Fresh fruit makes for a healthy breakfast.

Try topping your cereal with sliced bananas and strawberries.

As far as cereal goes, I love the texture of Chex and Shredded Wheat.  Adding in the cut up fruit is a game changer.  It really improves the taste.

Frozen waffles are quick and easy, drizzled with your favorite syrup.  In the chillier months, pumpkin-flavored syrup is delightful.

On the weekends when I have more time and our mornings aren't so rushed, I make a big breakfast.

A stack of big, fluffy, blueberry-filled pancakes are a wonderful treat.
I wanted to make something sweet for my husband on Valentine's Day.  Using a heart shaped mold, I surprised him with these pancakes and he loved it!

*Bonus points if you cut your fruit into heart shaped pieces!

My family goes crazy for homemade French toast.  The next time you make it, try blending a couple bananas into the batter.  The difference is so flavorful.

Strawberry shortcake waffles are like eating breakfast for dessert,  which is totally acceptable!  Who doesn't like waffles with strawberries and whipped cream?

Breakfast in bed is a great morning surprise!  I kept it simple with eggs and fruit.  If you put forth the effort, your loved one will appreciate you.

A mix of cantaloupe and honeydew is a refreshing way to start your day.  It's a colorful fruit salad perfect for summer when it's too hot to cook.

When the weather is nice, consider eating outside.  We like to eat on the deck in our backyard.  I light candles, turn the music on and we relax while we eat.

When the foliage is lush and green, our backyard feels like an outdoor cafe.

Your table is the heart of your home.  In addition to the meals we eat, we have meaningful conversations.  Memories are made here!

I look forward to making breakfast and eating with my family.  What are your fondest memories at the table?

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Green Tea Lemonade

 I have one sister!  She loves to cook and makes the best savory dishes and drinks.

Through the years she gained a lot of experience in the kitchen.  Recipes passed down from coworkers, our mother, grandmother and aunts are her specialty.  Comfort food that feels like home.

 I'll never forget the time she came to visit and made a pitcher full of sweet tea.  It was the best thing I ever had!  She made it fresh, using a few common ingredients. 

Since moving to Georgia, I've come to learn, sweet tea in the refrigerator is more common than milk.
I grew up on the iced tea mix.  It wasn't until my sister's visit did I become a fan addicted.

Now that summer is rolling through, I've been craving my sister's sweet tea.  It's perfectly refreshing and puts a smile on my face as it quenches my thirst.

I made her recipe by substituting black tea for green.  It's loaded with antioxidants and sugar  so there's a health benefit too!

4 cups boiled water
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup honey
8 green tea bags(I prefer Lipton)
1 cup fresh lemon juice 
 gallon pitcher

Place tea bags in pot of boiling water.  Allow to steep for no more than 5 minutes.  Remove the tea bags(avoid squeezing tea bags, so tea won't be bitter).  In pitcher, combine tea, lemon juice, sugar and honey.  Add ice and serve.  Garnish with lemon wedges and fresh herbs.

*I love you, Kristen!  Thank you for always making me hungry, even if I just ate! 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Spring Home Love

Good morning, friends!  We've had an unseasonably warm winter here in Atlanta.  Then bam, lately we've been having a cold spell.  

Well, today we're going to pretend that the doors are wide open and spring is upon us as I join 15 other bloggers in a spring home tour.

If you're visiting from Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, welcome!  My decor is simple and inspired by nature.  We've been in our home almost 9 years.

 There's a small entryway as you walk into our home.  To define the space and give it purpose; I hung a mirror, shelf and candle sconces.  We place our keys in the bowl and a spring planter greets you!

  I'm a huge plant lover.  Plants breathe life into a room.  In the spring I add even more plants and flowers to brighten my home.

I begin by deep cleaning and organizing to prepare my home for spring.  I also freshen up the trim and baseboards with white paint.

Then I have fun decorating!  Fresh greenery is such a simple and inexpensive way to liven up your home for spring.

I'm always chilly.  I like to keep extra blankets nearby in a basket.

We eat dinner in the dining room so I kept things simple on the table.

A pretty planter filled with flowers is a simple spring centerpiece.

I made a few changes to my daughter's room as well...

Her room is a favorite in the house because it's not surrounded by clutter.  I purchased a vase and filled it with eucalyptus sprigs.  They have an added bonus of smelling nice and refreshing.

 Her bench is nice place to sit while putting her shoes on, or spot for friends to sit when they visit.  

I love pillows!  A new pillow can do wonders for your space.  This graphic bird pillow from Tonic Living really brought my daughter's bench to life.  

That concludes my spring tour.  I hope you enjoyed your visit.  Please continue the blog hop by visiting Lea at Creekwood Hill.  The rest of the ladies are tagged below.  Be sure to stop by their blogs to be inspired.

*This post was made possible through a partnership with Tonic Living.  All opinions expressed and experiences are my own words.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Interior Dutch Door

We recently swapped our boring, flat panel, hollow core door for a beautiful new Dutch door.  I absolutely love the look of Dutch doors.  They're so charming and nice way to add a bit of character to your home.

Traditional Dutch doors aren't cheap.  To make this project affordable, we purchased a new wooden door and had it cut it in half.

 Our contractor friend, also chiseled out an additional hinge and added the latch hardware.

 I couldn't decide whether to go with a stained finish or a painted door.  Stain is so messy to apply, but I was afraid paint would cover the wood grain.  In the end I decided to paint the door a classic black.  The color works well in our small hallway.  And thankfully the wood grain is still visible!
One change leads to another... You may have noticed that we covered up the stripe pattern on the wall.  I adored the stripes, but it was time to say goodbye.  I couldn't quite bring myself to paint over all my hard work though.  I had leftover (removable) wallpaper tiles from a bigger project in my daughter's room and thought, why don't I use them here.  In some areas I had a hard time matching the patterns.  I plan to hang art to hide the imperfections!

 We have a new puppy!(I'll share more about her in another post.)  The bottom half stays closed when we have company and need to keep the dogs away.  So much nicer than using our previous baby gate.     
Our puppy is potty trained so I didn't want to use a crate.  On the other hand when we're not home, I need to keep her safe and avoid coming home to another chewed up rug.  The door has also been a functional solution until she's mature enough to be left loose in the house. Design and function!! 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017

Happy New Year, friends!

 Wishing you a magical New Year. I hope it brings you a lot of joy and happiness.

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions.  Because truthfully, I don't follow through.  If something motivates me, I should commit to it now, right?!

But I need to develop healthier eating habits, be more active and remain consistent throughout the year.  As I get older taking care of my health should be a priority.

As I look back, there is so much to be grateful for.  I'm thankful for you guys.  Thank you for being so nice to me.  Your support, comments, emails, words of encouragement mean so much.  May 2017 be our best year yet!! 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas From My Family To Yours

Hello friends!  I sure hope each of you had a relaxing, wonderful and very Merry Christmas.  Just popping in real quick to share a few simple holiday touches from around our house.  

As much as I love to decorate, this year I had the desire to keep our holiday decor completely simple.  My daughter is a December baby.  I had fun decorating her room.  She loved the cedar garland draped around her bed.  She said it felt like she was sleeping in the forest!

I switched out the decor in my wooden bowl and decided to load it up with bleached pine cones and fairy lights.

Listening to Christmas music on my old-school IPod while I filled out holiday cards.  Thought I'd share my alternative to sealing envelopes.  I fill a small bowl with water and use an art paint brush to moisten the seal. Works like a charm!

A preserved boxwood wreath (Target) hung with black and white ribbon.

I made sure the bar cart was stocked and ready to go!!

The weather was so nice on Christmas Eve that we decided to sit outside around the fire pit.  We made smores and sipped on eggnog.

Warm and cozy under the stars!

I topped my coffee table with a tray filled with silver dollar eucalyptus, a wooden box and ornaments for an easy centerpiece.

The ornaments are from the dollar store.  It gives me peace of mind knowing they're toddler-friendly!

We're tired of traditional holiday meals.  We had store bought lasagna for dinner Christmas Eve and enjoyed crab legs along with take out for dinner tonight.  A little unexpected, but dinner was simple and easy. Clean-up was a breeze!  We decided to make this a thing.  Maybe next year we'll set up a taco bar!!
Merry Christmas!  I hope you are surrounded by good food and the people and pets you love!