Thursday, January 28, 2016

Homemade King Cake Recipe...Again

I know I posted this recipe last year, but with Mardi Gras approaching, I thought I'd share it again, only with more pictures and a step by step this time around. :) 

Once again, I used Emeril's Quick King Cake Recipe found HERE, only I omitted the fruit pie filling. If you click on the recipe, you can get a printable version. 

It was just as good as I remembered. :)

Here are the ingredients you'll need...

Crescent rolls, cinnamon, butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, granulated sugar and food coloring.

You'll need the 12 ounce package of crescent rolls like this one.

First, mix up 8 ounces softened cream cheese and 1 cup powdered sugar.

Then mix 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 cup butter.

Unroll crescent rolls in one piece. Press seams together to form one piece of dough.

As you can doesn't have to be perfect. ;)

Then gently spread the butter/cinnamon mixture over the dough.

Then drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese/powdered sugar mixture on top.

Please excuse these pics...I was trying to take them quickly, with one hand, while trying not to get my phone sticky. :) 

Starting at the long end, carefully roll the dough, horizontally, with the filling inside. Then place on baking pan (I lined mine with parchment) with the seam side down in a circle, pinching the ends together and bake at 350 degrees 15-20 minutes.

Here's my (blurry) pic right before it went into the oven.

While it's baking, you can color your sugar. For some reason, the purple color is a little off in this pic.

To color the sugar, I filled three Ziplock bags with 1/4 cup granulated sugar each and added drops of food coloring. 

Here is the formula I used to get these particular shades of yellow, green, and purple:

Yellow: Two drops yellow food coloring
Green: Two drops green food coloring
Purple: One drop blue and three drops red food coloring.

I just put the drops in with the sugar and worked it in by massaging the bag until it was all incorporated.

So, here's what it'll look like when it comes out of the oven...

Definitely not perfect, huh? Ha! It doesn't matter too much what it looks like, because you can cover up any imperfections with the icing. 

After the cake cools, mix up 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 Tablespoon lemon juice, and 1 Tablespoon water for the icing. Pour the icing over the cake and add the colored sugar.

As you can see, mine's still not perfect (far from it, in fact) but it tastes SO good!

I refrigerate mine after I put the icing on.

I got lots of compliments on it. It's so moist and delicious! Much better than the store bought ones, in my opinion. :)

Have you ever made a King Cake? I was surprised at how easy this one was. Y'all have a great day!


Monday, January 25, 2016

A New Mirror and a Feature

First of all, I want to thank Beckie of Infarrantly Creative and Knock Off Decor for featuring my DIY Restoration Hardware Inspired Rolling Cart today. It was a total surprise when she contacted me last week to let me know she was going to share my cart! Click HERE to see it on her blog. Thank you again, Beckie! 

Okay, now for the new mirror. I've been looking for a new mirror for my dining room for weeks and weeks. I finally found this one and am so happy with it!

For comparison, here's how it looked BEFORE with the trio of sunburst mirrors...

And again, the AFTER with the new clover mirror...

I love my plate wall in here, but ever since I added the sunburst mirrors on the opposite wall, I thought it was too many circles, too close together. So, I've been looking for a single mirror for that spot.

I found this new mirror at Target and it was only $19.99! I added the burlap ribbon for a little extra height. 

The size and color was perfect!

I hung the mirror with the built in hangers on the back and just hot glued the burlap ribbon as a decorative touch. I looped the ribbon through a picture hanger on the wall to make it look like it was holding the mirror. 

Here's a close up of the finish...

As for the sunburst mirrors, they ended up in our bedroom...

I'll be back soon with a tutorial for a Homemade King Cake. Yum!


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Around The House

Do y'all know my college aged son has been home on Christmas break for five weeks?! That's a long time. :) 

He just went back Today and Tuesday just happens to be my favorite day of the week because it's the one day I try not to do any major chores, etc. 

Pretty much Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, I have a few chores I need to do. Laundry on two of those days, grocery shopping once a week, cleaning the house, more laundry, making the grocery list, etc. 

But as I've mentioned before, Tuesdays are golden. :)

But having said that, I still struggle with truly relaxing. I keep looking around the house thinking of things I "need" to do. I'm totally the type of person who just can't relax until all my work is done. I could never enjoy a movie or book knowing there is a sink full of dishes. Not going to happen. Work before play is my motto. Ha!

So on this particular Tuesday, I planned on catching up with my DVR and spending time with my Kindle and a cup of coffee.

Until...I filled my cup with water from the fridge and started thinking about how long it's been since I wiped down the glass shelves in there. But I resisted. It'll still need to be cleaned tomorrow. 

Then I walked over to the pantry to refill my tin with coffee pods and played around with the idea of cleaning it out and organizing it. Nope. It'll just get messed up again. Believe me...the inside doesn't look nearly as pretty as the outside.

I passed by the master bathroom and contemplated throwing a load of towels into the wash...

I "just said no" and walked back out into the bedroom where I DID make the bed. I simply can't go a day without making my bed. It makes me so happy when I walk by and see it all made up and pretty. :)

So, I fixed a cup of coffee and filled it with my favorite creamer (Peppermint Mocha) As you can see, we have SIX bottles of creamer in our fridge. I stocked up on the holiday ones before they disappear until next year. 

And I sat down with my coffee and now I'm enjoying a movie on the Hallmark Movies and Mysteries channel. Do y'all have that channel? Hallmark now has two channels, the regular "Hallmark Channel" and the "Hallmark Movies and Mysteries Channel." This one has lots of cozy mystery shows and movies. They've made several of my favorite books into movies and they're showing them on this channel. 

They've made the first two books in the "Hannah Swensen Mysteries" (by Joanne Fluke) into movies and they just made the first of the "Flower Shop Mysteries" (by Kate Collins) into a movie. My mom told me about the "Garage Sale Mysteries" on this channel too and now I have four of them set to record this Wednesday. 

I used to not have the Hallmark Movies and Mysteries channel on my current package, but it was only a $5/month add on and it came with several other channels too. Oh, and they gave me three free months to be sure I liked it. What a deal! 

I'm sure as soon as I watch this, I'll throw a load of towels in and clean the shelves in the fridge. Old habits are hard to break. ;)

Sunday, January 17, 2016

A Touch Of Blue...

As I mentioned earlier, I was on a quest to add some touches of blue to the living room. I found everything I wanted and was able to get it all without ever leaving the house and I didn't shop online. How did I do it, you ask? I used my personal shopper...aka my hubby. ;)

He was doing some shopping the other day and as soon as he left, I started googling pillow covers and decorative plates and before he knew it, I was texting him pics and item numbers of things to pick up for me. Lol!

It's a good thing he loves to shop. :) 

I had him pick up these plates for the mantel at Pier 1 and four blue and white pillow covers at Hobby Lobby. I even texted him my Hobby Lobby coupon. He had to go to two stores to get all four pillow covers, which was kind of a good thing because then he got to use a coupon on two of them.

These pillow covers were only $6.99 before the coupon, (and only $4.19 after the coupon) and they have zippers. 

The back is a plain cream color. 

I love these pops of blue!

Here's a close up of the plates...

blue and white plates
They were on clearance at Pier 1 for only $4.98!

I purchased this pretty vase years ago at The Bombay Co. I loved that store and have many furniture pieces from them as well.

Ten points to the person who can spy Holly in the pic below. ;)

I'm so happy with my finds!

 Having a neutral background sure makes it easy (and fun) to change up my decor with just a few pieces. 

P.S. If you couldn't find her, Holly is sleeping on the back of the sofa in the pic. It's her happy place. :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

My Favorite Brownie Recipe

So, I know I recently shared some of my favorite healthy snack ideas, but sometimes your kids just want you to make dessert. And to be honest, I only ate one of these. :) 

Just look at this yummy pic...

Let me tell you that the house smells so good while these are baking!

Here's the recipe I use:

Baker's One Bowl Brownies


4 squares Baker's Unsweetened Chocolate 
3/4 cup butter
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)


Heat oven to 350. Line a 13x9 pan with foil. Spray foil with cooking spray.

Microwave chocolate and butter in large microwave bowl on high 2 minutes. Stir until chocolate is melted.

Stir sugar into chocolate until well blended Mix in eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour and nuts until well blended. Spread in greased foil lined 13x9 inch baking pan. 

Bake 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out with fudgy crumbs. Do not overbake. Cool in pan. Cut into squares. 

Notes: I always use their "Cake Like" version (without nuts) The brownie in the pic above is the cake like version. Here's the variation:

For Cake like brownies, Stir in 1/2 cup milk with eggs and vanilla. Increase flour to 1 1/2 cups. I always mix it with a whisk and bake this version for 32 minutes. I also leave mine in the pan and just refrigerate. We cut individual pieces as we want them. 

So good!



Friday, January 8, 2016


So, how was the first week back to reality after Christmas break? It's usually a long week, but I can't believe how quickly it went by. 

For some reason, our Knockout rose bush is in full bloom right now, so I clipped some flowers to bring inside. 

I love how easy it is to add a pop of color with neutral decor as a background. I'm thinking of adding some new pillow covers in a navy print. I don't think I've ever had navy in this room (besides that vase above) and I think I'd like the change. 

Maybe some navy patterned plates on the mantel?

And a few pops of navy on the rolling cart? Hmm...I'll have to shop the house first, then go in search of pillow covers. 

So, onto another subject...

With it being the start of a new year, I know a lot of us are trying to make healthier food choices and I wanted to share a few favorites of mine.

 Smart Ones chicken enchiladas ~ so good! I've been buying them for years and they really have a lot of flavor. They're only $1.74 at my local grocery store. 

I really like to have a little chocolate in my day and these York peppermint patties hit the spot. One of these (snack size) only has 60 calories and 1.25 fat grams. 

I've talked about Skinny Cow products before and they're still a go-to item for my sweet tooth. These dark chocolate dreamy clusters are my favorite. If you're local, HEB has these on sale, buy one get one free right now with an in-store coupon. They're normally $3.64 a box at my store.

My mom and aunt kept talking about this Skinny Pop popcorn and I finally tried it. It was delicious! Only 43 calories per cup, people! So far, I've only tried white cheddar, but they have a lime and salt version I want to try next. This bag was $2.83.

So, I'm curious, what are your favorite low fat snacks or meals? I'm always looking for new things to try. :) 


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