No Bake Protein Bites

 No Bake Protein Bites

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Holy Cats it’s Labor Day weekend! How’d that happen?

Hard to believe summer is metaphorically over (technically it’s not over until September 23rd) #nerdstatus BUT I’m excited for fall.

You know that saying…. Something like “fail to plan, plan to fail”….? That’s how I feel about food. If I don’t plan ahead and have healthy snacks and food on hand, next think you know, I’m making bad decisions and compulsively thinking about 150 new Lays potato chip flavors(ps I totally think I should be the million dollar winner). I think I really have some great ones but that’s not the point. The POINT is that I DON’T want to eat every flavor of Lays chips and I don’t want to make bad choices.

So every week I spend time trying to cut veggies and clean fruit and make it easy to grab. But sometimes a celery stick or handful of grapes isn’t cutting it. Like I need chocolate or I need crunchy salty….. it’s like a ravenous beast hijacks my body….. the struggle is real.

ENTER these delicious and healthy snack bites. They’re healthy, they’re easy, they’re no bake, they’re easy to store, and easy to bring along anywhere.  oh and it tells your mental chocolate monster to STFU 🙂

I’ve made some of these before but honestly these are the best ones I’ve made. I combined several recipes (you’re welcome for testing all types of chocolate and sweet goodness for you. It was hard work……………….)

These are a great option for kids, for adults, for school, for lunches, for snacks, for car rides, for day trips, for watching Scandal on Netflix on the couch for hours…. oh just me? ok then.

Bottom line. These little babies are delicious and a healthy sweet treat. You literally have no reasons to not make them . Like right now.

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Here’s the Recipe:

ALWAYSSUMMER (4)

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There you have it! As noted, you might have to put a little elbow grease into mixing is all together but even if it seems a little dry in the bowl, once you roll into a ball in your hands, you’ll realize it’s actually perfect and the stick together great!! Hope you get to give these a try and that you enjoy!

HAPPY FRIDAY! Have a wonderful LONG weekend!

xoxo

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Summer Radish Salad

Summer Radish Salad

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Summer is almost over?! Is this a joke? This summer flew by in the blink of an eye for me.

With the wedding planning and then the wedding and then our magical trip to Italy (remind me I should do a post on that) I feel like summer just began. But Autumn/Fall is my favorite season by far so I’m ok with it 🙂

With the end of the summer season comes Labor Day. Labor day is filled with family and fun and barbecues and cookout and food and drink! This year we don’t have many plans, Jake coaches football so the Labor Day weekend won’t really include traveling or big parties for us.

Buuutttttt

If you have Labor Day plans and need an awesome side dish, I’ve solved your problem for you!

This Radish Salad is patriotic(it’s red) delicious(anything with lemon and parsley is ok in my book!) and it’s healthy, oh and one more thing, b.e.a.utiful!

ALWAYSSUMMERTada.Super duper easy peasy.

A super helpful trick is that I use THIS handy dandy tool to chop all the radishes up nicely and evenly (not to mention insanely fast) and it works like a charm.

wpid-wp-1440960244291.jpgWe will definitely be making this again soon. Thanks for stopping by and checking out the blog and I hope you had wonderful weekend!!!

xoxo

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Gold Painted String Lights

Gold Painted String Lights

1So remember that time I told you I had become obsessed with gold spray paint? Well….. I wasn’t kidding.

It pretty much all started because of the wedding. Our colors were green and gold and there were some items (like these) that I liked but wanted to have them be gold.

Enter liquid gold.

Then things got pretty serious and I was spray painting anything I could get my hands on. Napkin rings, rocks, vases,string lights…you name it!

I think I just saw an idea like this on Pinterest and decided I wanted to have some of the lights gold for my wedding. My mom found these knock off “cafe” lights on clearance the day after Christmas and snatched them up for me. I only did three strings of them but they turned out great for the wedding and I am also planning and looking forward to using these around the holidays! I’m a traditional green and gold type of girl so these will look amaze-balls around the house for Christmas!2All you need is: 

  • Spray Paint (this is my favorite gold)
  • Painters tape (or any tape I guess)
  • String lights
  • an open area to spray paint and cardboard boxes or something like this to paint in/over.
  • This amazing tool (ok. you don’t NEED this but it will make it 100% easier and you get a really even coat)

Then you just:

  • Tape up the areas you DON’T want paint on . My bulbs unscrewed so I just took them all off and put a tiny piece of tape over the LED light and also taped the ends as shown below.

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  • Make sure you’re in well ventilated area and following these rules.

{Spray Paint Tips}

  • Then just go to town! I did two full coats and then some touchups on some weird spots. It’s a little hard to not have fingerprints when you do the whole thing at once as you have to pick  it up and move it and twist it and turn it. But the final 3rd spray down for just those spots will leave you with perfectly even paint.

So there you go! Beautiful makeover to make something cheap look fancy and sophisticated. Someone please remember to remind me to take a picture of these around my house at Christmas 🙂

Thank you so much for checking in! Hope you all have fabulous weekends.

 

xoxo669058772380712020613

Napkin Rings {Makeover}

Napkin Rings {Makeover}

RevampedSooo last week’s post talked about how I went a little spray paint crazy. It all started by wanting to try to paint some string lights gold (for the wedding) call me crazy but I thought it would look awesome (it does). But to see those, you’ll have to tune in next week! 🙂 After spraying the lights and seeing how beautiful the gold paint went on and how glam it looked, I started rummaging around the house for other items to paint. Enter these napkin rings. Now you’re probably thinking “why do you have napkin rings” (I don’t know either) “do you really use napkin rings?” (like one time ever) – BUT they were my grandmas and while going through her stuff after she passed away, I came across these and thought they were rustic and cute and when if I have a dinner party then I’d use them. Then I thought I’d glam them up a little bit, also  my heart wouldn’t break if the grand idea didn’t work out anyway. So I taped them up: Both the inside and outside. I couldn’t decide on a pattern so I thought it would look cute if I did a variety. It was a little difficult to adequately tape the inside because it’s a circle and it kept trying to lift in certain places but it ended up working pretty good. I used a Qtip in rubbing alcohol to clean up some minor “leaks” in the tape and surprisingly that worked really good. DSC_9696 copyThere are 7 rings total (used to be 8 but I broke one by shutting a drawer a little aggressively one day) so I ended up doing 3 that I taped two spots like this: DSC_9704 copyAnd then two of 4 spots like this: DSC_9706 copyAnd two of 5 spots: DSC_9708 copyHonestly the one top one is my favorite (the two spots ones) and I half wish I would have done them all like that, but I also like the ones split in 4, the 5 is not my favorite. BUT I do like variety so I’m fine with it. DSC_9686 copyFor other tips and tricks on spray painting see HERE. So what do you think?!? Cute? Lame? I’d love your thoughts! I’ll just be sitting over here waiting to use these babies for all my non existent dinner parties 🙂 HAPPY FRIDAY! Thanks for reading and checking out the blog. Have a great weekend!

xoxo

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“Sharpie” Mugs

“Sharpie” Mugs

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Hi all!

So I’m sure a lot of you have probably seen these “sharpie” mug craft ideas floating around the internet lately. Don’t be fooled, you cannot use regular old sharpies and have this work. This craft isn’t really as simple as just writing on a mug and voila! Lucky for you the first time I totally biffed it and failed BIG TIME at this but learned from my mistakes and perfected it the 2nd time around. 🙂

Key points to remember are: 
Oil based PAINT Sharpie Markers (or any oil based PAINT pen)
– Clean your surface with rubbing alcohol!
– Only one layer of paint
– HOT oven

Let’s get started and I’ll take you through step by step. If you know these steps it’s really an easy and fun craft!

Supplies:

  • Cheap ceramic mugs (the cheaper the better)
  • Oil-based Sharpie marker (NOT regular sharpies!)
  • Cotton balls and 1-2 Q-Tips
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • A pencil

Instructions:
Wash your mugs with soap and warm water. Dry completely. Then use a cotton pad or swab to clean your surface with rubbing alcohol. This will take any residual soap or other things off the surface and insure your paid will hold better. Let that dry too (takes like 2 seconds).

Use a pencil to sketch your design on each mug. There are some really cute ideas out there but you could make up your own, draw a picture, or whatever your heart desires. Once you are happy with your sketch, trace over it with your paint pen. It’s not an easy task drawing on a curved surface but that’s where the extra rubbing alcohol and Q-Tips come in! You’re going to mess up. Trust me. Probably like 5 times and if you’re a perfectionist like me, then probably like 50 times. Once you are happy with your design you have to let the paint dry.

I let my mugs air dry for a good 24 hours before I baked them and I think that is a crucial step, based on my first mishap. To bake, all you need to do is put your mugs on a cookie sheet and place in a COLD oven and turn the heat on to 425. You want the mugs to heat up with the oven to prevent cracking and allow it to seep into the glaze of the mugs. Once your oven is preheated, bake the mugs for 40 minutes. Once the 40 minutes is up, turn the oven off but leave the mugs in the oven with the door closed and allow them to cool completely. This will also help prevent cracking by avoiding fast temperature changes. After about 2 hours they were cool and I took them out.

As far as care for the mugs after they are complete, I’ve heard some people say they are fine in the dishwasher but I don’t risk it, I just wash them by hand and they still look as good as new! I’ve washed them probably about 20 times so far.

This is such a great simple and easy gift to make. The possibilities are literally endless. I want to make more but a girl can only use so many coffee mugs. But this is definitely on my list for Christmas time 🙂 Here are a few of my favorite ones I’ve seen and ones that I want to try and ones I just like!

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*None of these pictures are my own

  Yay! Hope yours turn out perfect and fun. Stop back and show me some of your designs. I’d love to see them.

xoxo

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* Update. Since doing this craft the colored paint has chipped off a bit, but the black is still perfect. I just went over the colored part again and baked and so far so good. Let me know if you have any tips to keep this from happening 🙂