Monthly Archives: November 2011

{DIY} Yarn Wreath

At our household, nesting has taken full effect.  Binks and I have been working away trying to get the house ready for Baby Binks, who is due in about 10 days.  I cannot believe how fast this whole experience has gone by.

I’ve been using this time to catch up on some DIY projects that I have bookmarked (I need to get on the Pinterest wagon).  First and foremost was my wreath, which I’m actually very proud of, especially considering that I’m not the crafty kind.

If you remember, I started here, (from here originally) and have been working on little by little to yield this.

Ignore the yellow bow as I initially thought I would hang the wreath outside on my front door.  After seeing it leaning against my baroque-style mirror, I wanted to keep it inside.  It really brightens up and adds a charm to my living room for the fall.  And, plus, I don’t want it to get dirty outside.  🙂

I would do this again – and am thinking about creating one for my mom with the leftover yarn.  I might change up the flowers and add more and scatter it throughout the wreath.

The flowers were also easy to handle – I could easily change up the look based on how I cut the flowers and how tightly I rolled them.

Again, easy peasy beautiful.

What do you think?  Are you crafty?  Working on anything lately?

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Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spinach artichoke dip is pretty much a staple at most parties I attend.  I, however, didn’t jump on this dip-wagon until very recently – that is, when I played around with a recipe that has a lot of flavor.  (I can’t stand a bland, runny and stringy spinach artichoke dip.)

When Foodbuzz asked me to sample their new Classico Light Alfredo sauce (through the Tastemaker Program), I was thrilled – and around the time of my baby shower to boot!  I was thrilled to test out a lower-fat version of my favorite dip.  What’s not to love than a lighter version of our favorite recipes that doesn’t taste lighter?

I must say, that when it comes to Alfredo sauces, “light” usually denotes a product that tastes sweeter due to the lesser fat content and higher sugar content.  Lucky for me (and my guests), the Classico Light didn’t have this issue at all.

And, I know because I thoroughly enjoyed the leftovers – below is all that I had after the baby shower!

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Adapted from here

Ingredients:

–  1 jar of Classico Light Creamy Alfredo Sauce
–  1 tbsp granulated garlic
–  1 tsp red pepper flakes (adjust to taste)
–  1/2 (8 oz)  package of light cream cheese
–   1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
–  1 tsp salt
–  1/2 tsp pepper
–  1 (14 oz) can of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
–  1 (10 oz) frozen spinach, thawed and drained
–   1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, grated, divided

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 350F.
2.  Mix together all ingredients, except 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese.
3.  Spread mixed ingredients into an 8×8 baking dish.
4.  Mix the remaining 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese.
5.  Sprinkle on top of the mixed ingredients.
6.  Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
7.   Uncover and bake for 12-15 minutes until bubbly and slightly browned on top.

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Filed under Appetizers, baking, garlic, Uncategorized, Vegetarian

Baby Shower Goods

I have been in a work-related whirlwind for the past three weeks.  The end of this whole mess was marked by the most fantabulous baby shower I have ever received.  Well, I’m not one for surprises and I wanted to be involved.  I donated my baking abilities.  Remember the smorgasbord?

After a grueling three weeks of response writing, which at the end included a grand total of 600 complied documents, 60 of which were my written product, I went on a baking spree.

Meet the results.  (Lemon Blossoms from here; Goat Cheese Terrine from here; Mexican Wedding Cookies from here.)

And, some additional items.  (Pumpkin bread and chocolate cookies – recipes to come)

My mom made Southwestern Egg Rolls – yep, she’s that awesome, and my MIL made her famous chicken salad sandwiches on croissant.

It was foodie heaven.

And presents and decorations heaven.

I must say that this really did mark the beginning of nesting and preparing for the new baby’s arrival.  I have had baby on the brain night and day.  I plan on balancing that out with more baking.  🙂

How do you unwind?  Do you cook your stress away?

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Filed under Appetizers, baking, Cake, Cookies, Desserts, Favorites, Pregnancy