Wednesday, November 29, 2017

A Recipe Fail and Thanksgiving Tablescapes

I've always wanted to try making a 7-up cake. I kept seeing them in the bakery at the grocery store and they looked so good. So on my last trip to the store, I googled the recipe and added the ingredients to my cart right then and there. I will say though, I've never used this many eggs or this much butter and sugar in a cake before. Lol! 

I began gathering my ingredients...

There are 5 eggs, three sticks of butter and three cups of sugar in it! And two whole TABLESPOONS of lemon extract! The directions said to "grease pan generously" so that's what I did. Or so I thought. I used a lot of Pam on my Bundt pan. It also said to remove from pan immediately after baking. I thought that sounded a bit weird, but I did it anyway.'s what happened...

Mmm hmm. It stuck to the pan. Like really stuck. Not sure what went wrong. Some reviews said theirs stuck too, but they made it again and used butter to grease the pan and it turned out fine. I guess I should have used butter instead of Pam spray. 

This pic was before I put the glaze on it. After glazing it, we ate it and it was really good! I mean, it wasn't very pretty, but it tasted great. :) Have any of you made a 7-up cake before?

Next up is my Thanksgiving tablescapes. I know it's really late to share these, but I wanted to document it here so I can look back next year and get ideas. :) 

My dining room...

That's just a fall garland around the pumpkin. I love that look! 

And my breakfast table in the kitchen...

I was able to incorporate my new Magnolia Market crown tray into the centerpiece. I just set it atop the cake plate my mom gave me and added some acorns, pinecones and a pumpkin. 

That's all for now. Thanks for stopping by!


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

New Family Member...

Introducing Finn...

Isn't he cute? He's our newest family member. My youngest has been asking for a kitten for a long time. I finally gave in and this little guy entered our lives. He was rescued from a kill shelter and we adopted him a couple of weeks ago. 

Holly still isn't too sure about him. There's definitely some hissing and growling going on over here, but she's slowly coming around. She's definitely interested in him. I've been giving her extra hugs and treats, as if she wasn't already spoiled. Ha! She's my baby girl, for sure. 

A few more pics...

The day we brought him home...

Jumping in and out of the pillow shams...

He's so cute and such a sweetie pie. He purrs constantly and loves to be held. And so far, he's being pretty good about not getting into the Christmas tree. :) 


Friday, November 24, 2017

New Quartz Kitchen Counters!

We finally finished the kitchen makeover! The quartz counters were installed Tuesday (two days before we hosted 10 people for Thanksgiving!) and we couldn't be more pleased! At the last minute, we had to buy a new kitchen faucet because when we removed our old one, it was corroded at the base. I think it was from our hard water. We tried CLR, vinegar, etc. and it didn't come clean. So at 9 o'clock the night before they arrived to install the counters, I went online to Home Depot to try and find a new one. 

We had to get one that was in stock at our local store, obviously. :) Our new farmhouse sink is a Kohler, so I decided to go with them for the faucet too. It was the easiest online shopping experience. I literally pulled up all the Kohler faucets, saw this one and loved it. It was in stock, a reasonable price, and had over 500 five-star reviews. Sold! I texted my hubby the info and he was there bright and early the morning of the installation to pick it up. 

So here's our completed kitchen...

I'm loving that basin rack. It's specially made to fit our sink. 

Truth be told, I'm kinda glad we had to get a new faucet. This one is so much better. It's the "Kohler Sous Pull Down Kitchen Faucet in Stainless." Here's a link: Kohler Sous Pull Down Faucet

The pull down spout is magnetically attached to that little bar. The bar swings all the way around too. Very convenient!

Just a quick note...I updated my HOME TOUR POST to include pics of our "new" kitchen. It's kind of fun to scroll through the Home Tour and see what our house has looked like at different times. :) Click HERE to see the tour through the years. Or just click on the "Click Here For Home Tour" button on the right. This post also has links to just about anything you want to know about our DIY projects, etc. 

short apron farmhouse sink

Here's a link to the farmhouse sink we bought:

So glad we went with the ogee edge...

Our counters are Daltile Polished Quartz in "Riverbank." Just for reference, we have about 60 square feet of counter space. One slab covers almost 60 square feet, depending on how many cuts they have to make, etc. So we bought two slabs. Ours ran about $80 per square foot, installed. 

I think the counters go well with our new stainless appliances. It's so hard to picture everything in your mind when picking out colors, etc. 

I like that it's more neutral now. Lots of whites and greys with a few pops of color...

I moved our other coffee maker over here. Now it's like a full service coffee (and tea) bar. :) 

If you missed it, here's a link to my post where I talk all about the new appliances we purchased: 

And bonus, they had enough quartz left over to redo our guest bathroom counter! I'll do a post later explaining why we needed to replace it. 

You may have noticed in the above pics that we went with the Breville toaster... 

Love all the settings. 

breville lift and look

So that's it for the new counters. Thanks for following along with this little makeover. Your advice was very much appreciated! I feel like we made all these decisions together. :) 


Saturday, November 18, 2017

The Easiest Cranberry Sauce Recipe, EVER!

Okay, y'all...we're coming up on Thanksgiving very quickly. If you want to impress your relatives with fancy cranberry sauce, but you're not a fancy cook, this recipe is for you! This takes less than 5 minutes to prepare and it's delicious! 

You only need 3 ingredients...

5 minute cranberry sauce recipe

It's from Sandra Lee and you won't believe how easy it is! My aunt gave me this recipe years ago and it's definitely a winner. It graces our table every Thanksgiving. 

Here it is:

1 can jellied cranberry sauce
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 jar orange marmalade

It also calls for orange zest strips, but I'm not that fancy, so I omit them. :) 

Here's the instructions: Stir everything together. 

So easy, right?

Don't you love one line instructions? :) 

Here's a pic from Sandra's site:

See? Fancy!

And here's a link to her recipe:

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all!


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

NASCAR and Magnolia Market

My oldest son is a big fan of NASCAR. So he was beyond excited to go to Fort Worth for the race at Texas Motor Speedway...

Dale Jr. Texas Motor Speedway

They got pit passes so they would have access to the cars and drivers before the race. 

He's a big Dale Jr. fan and I'm sure he was excited to see him up close during driver introductions...

Dale Earnhardt Jr. fan pics

I guess that would be like me getting to be that close to Nic Cage. ;) 

Anyway, they drove through Waco on their way home and asked if there was anything I wanted at Magnolia Market. Umm...yes!!!

I quickly took a screenshot of a few items I wanted. Everything on my list was out of stock except this beauty...

It's the "Desna Crown Tray" in medium. I can't wait to style it and I think it's going to look so good on my new counters! 

I also wanted a cupcake from the bakery, but the line was wrapped around the building. Oh well, like I said on IG, it saved me some extra time on the treadmill. :) 

Our kitchen counters are being installed next week! I can't wait to share pics! It looks like there will be enough quartz left over to redo our guest bath counter too. It was looking rough. I'll share some before an after pics of everything soon, but until then, look for sneak peeks on Instagram. Wishing you all a very good day!


Saturday, November 4, 2017

This and That

Hi everyone! Hope you're having a good day. It's been so hot and humid here...

100% humidity in November! Really, Houston??? Really???

In other news, my farmhouse sink came 6 days EARLY! Yay! 

Isn't she pretty? (the sink, but the cat is pretty too) I couldn't wait to take her out of the box and stare at her beauty. :) 

Now we need to set up an appointment for the counter guys to measure and then we can finally get the quartz installed. 

I thought I'd share a few Halloween pics with you. Here's Holly inspecting a pumpkin...

As you can see, she has to check out anything new that comes into the house. 

And here she is napping...

Relaxed much? 

My son and his friends dressed up as the kids from the movie "IT" for Halloween...

I love these kids! 

My boys carved a couple of pumpkins...

Obviously, one of them is obsessed with all things Apple. He just got the new iPhone X and is loving it. It's so weird how he opens his phone with his face. Lol! I guess facial recognition is the future. :) 

I shared a pic of this wine on IG the other day...

Côtes de Provence Rosé

Over the last 24 hours, I had cleaned up cat throw up, a toilet that overflowed and a mysterious smelly liquid oozing from a hole in the bottom of my outside trash can. I think it had to do with pumpkin guts. Eww. So I figured I deserved a glass of wine. :) 

There's a funny story that goes with this pic...So I read an article about this particular wine recently. It won several awards and was touted as being one of the best wines around. At only $8, I figured I had to try it. It was coming to the United States and was going to be available exclusively at Aldi stores, but only while supplies last.

So I marked my calendar for the release date. On that day, my mom and aunt went with me so we could each get a bottle. Or two. Or three. Only $8, remember? :) When we got to Aldi, we went straight to the wine aisle and spotted the sign for it, but the shelf was empty! The horror! Lol! My mom and aunt continued to look for it while I marched up to the check out lady, holding the ad up for her to see, asking if they were already sold out. She just stared at me and silently pointed at the huge display right in front of me. Hee hee! I didn't even bother to go get my mom and aunt, I just yelled "OVER HERE! I FOUND IT!" They came running and we each happily grabbed a few bottles and got in line to check out. Meanwhile, I noticed several other people in line casually grabbing some bottles too. They didn't know why we were so excited. A classic case of FOMO, I guess. Ha! Anyway, the reviews were right, it's very good. 

And I feel the need to say that no, I didn't drink all that wine in the picture above. We had company over the night before and this was what was left. :)

One more thing...Here is the list of all the new Christmas movies on the Hallmark channel...

Thanks to my aunt for sending me this. I've already got my DVR ready! 

Did y'all have a good Halloween? I'll be keeping my fall decor up until after Thanksgiving, as usual. But then it's ALL Christmas! 

Don't forget to set your clocks BACK an hour tonight!


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