July 17, 2018

Just be"cause"...

A "Fun Family" Gift Basket for a good cause.

It was so fun to put together this family game night basket and along with 
some other donated prizes, to help raise money for a young girl with a
 rare + debilatating illness. 

Stay Cozy,

July 10, 2018

No chocolate allowed...

 I love to bake birthday cakes and cupcakes!
This one was for my daughter's boyfriend that dislikes chocolate.
So strawberry it was!
 A 4-layer vanilla cake with strawberry cream cheese frosting!

Fresh sliced strawberries were place betwwen the layers along with the whipped crea/cream cheese frosting. I used strawberrypoke cake for two of the layers and plain white cake for the other two.

A poke cake is a cake that you poke holes into after its baked and cooled. The holes are then filled with jello or other liquid fillings such as condensed milk, chocolate, pudding or even pureed fruit. This infuses every bite of the cake and keeps the cake moist. I used strawberry jello.

It was yummy, light and not a mention of chocolate!

Staying Cozy,

July 7, 2018

Just a Pinch of Salt...

With all the wonderful herbs growing in my garden I decided to do something different...I have made many flavored pestos...
why not some flavored salts? 

 Starting with my freshly picked basil...I spread it out on a cookie sheet
and put it in a 275 degree oven to dry it out (about 15-20 mins)

 It definatley shrivels up - so go ahead and crowd it on the pan.

 Once dried it is "So Simple"...
Just add it to the food processor with coarse kosher salt and
pulse until it has reached the consistency you desire.

 It will look like this! It is so wonderfully flavorful.
I have also used my cliantro and even my lemon oregano.

You can find some small jars and give it as a gift by itself or perhaps
with a nice loaf of bread or even basil butter (which I also made).
I sent this little jar home with my daughter's boyfriend when he came over
to finishing building a table with my husband.

Bon Appetit and
 Stay Cozy!

July 2, 2018

Decor for the 4th!

Decorating for the 4th!

I am looking forward to a wonderful day!

Stay Cozy,

June 27, 2018

A Patriotic Welcome....

It's almost time for my favorite holiday of all...
4th of July!

No gifts or stress... just a wonderful day to enjoy friends and/or family,
 relax and celebrate this great country filled
with unimaginable blessings for all.

Of course a little decorating is always fun...
and reminds us of the special day.

Here  are some front doors with simple understated decorations to
 mark the holiday.

Which one is your favorite?




Stay Cozy,

June 14, 2018

Some Cute + "Time"ly kitchen pieces....

It's difficult for me to resist a cute kitchen timer...
especially if it is red and has a chicken or cherries...

Here are a few of mine!

 There was just something about this sweet little clock I couldn't resist either...
It must have been her little ponytail-buns!

Stay Cozy,

May 31, 2018

Coffee rituals...


It has been said that waking up ten minutes earlier than you normally would just to sit in bed and drink your coffee is one of the most worthwhile things you can do to get your day off to a great start.

Sitting in bed with a cup of coffee and zoning out, watching TV, or scrolling through social media can put your mind at ease - even
 if only for a few minutes.
My friend's husband brings her coffee to her in bed and she does this exact thing. My husband enjoys his coffee on the back deck during his devotion and prayer time. 
I enjoy my morning coffee too, however; it is not until I have showered, readied myself for the day, and prepared it in my "to-go" cup...that I start sipping my latte on my way 
out the door!

What is your coffee routine? Do you have one?
How's it working for you?

Staying Cozy and "Coffeed-up",

May 15, 2018

A West Elm "steal"

I was soooo excited to find this table at my Goodwill Store the other day...
I knew I wanted it the minute I saw it. My husband was with me - but he wasn't so sure. It was marked $19.99! I told him if it didn;t work out in the kitchen we could use it outside for a potting table at that price.
 (although I knew it would be perfect lol) 

We had to go back and pick it up the next day and as my husband and the store employee turned it over to take the legs off to fit in the car...there is was...
a "West Elm" sticker!

Funny how my husband's opinion of the table immediately changed...haha...as he whispered,
 "Shhh don't say anything" ... as if they might notice and take it back from us.

Well needless to say it works beautifully in our kitchen and we both love it!

When we got it home I, of course, looked to find it on the West Elm website!

And sure enough there it was...

The lower shelf was missing - but that was fine with me as it gave me room to push my stools underneath. On their website the description reads :

What a steel. The stainless-steel surface of our Rustic Kitchen Island pays homage to zinc-topped counters from Parisian bistros, while sturdy legs in acacia wood warm things up.
 It's just as ideal for slicing and dicing as it is for mixing and mingling.

A "steal" indeed - for us!

Stay Cozy,

May 8, 2018

Not forgetting to count my blessings....

I realized today is the the 2 year aniversary since I had to have a partial nephrectomy.  Long story how it was discovered...a story in itself...but I had to have a portion of my left kidney removed along with an "angry" tumor that had grown on the side of it. I was told  there was a good chance it was cancer - an 85% chance - but then right after surgery it went down to a 10% chance and as it turned out there was no cancer at all! It was truly a miracle for me. The recovery was certainly a challenge - but so much sweeter knowing how fortunate I was.

Prayer was my best friend - especially during the long waiting and wondering time before the actual surgery. God showed himself to me in so many special ways - during my times of doubt and tears and during the days of " why me" and "why not me". I am so grateful for my faith then and now - I cannot imagine my life without it.  My hope...to continue to remember what a gift my life is and to keep striving to live the purpose He has for me.

Happy Healthy Anniversary to me!

April 23, 2018

Kale or Kraze?

I know it has been the latest craze...and  pre-packaged kale chips can be so expensive...but kale is an excellent source of vitamin Kvitamin C, vitamin A, manganese, and copper; a very good source of vitamin B6fibercalcium,potassiumvitamin E, and vitamin B2; and a good source of ironmagnesium vitamin B1omega-3 fatsphosphorusproteinfolate, and vitamin B3.

You can easily make them yourself - for a fraction of the cost!

Just buy a nice big bag of Organic Kale (pre-washed if you prefer) - or pick up some fresh kale in bunches, remove the leaves from the stems and wash. 

Next put all the kale in a large bowl and pour the tahini dressing (recipe at the end) over it, mixing well to cover all the leaves. 

I use a dehydrator as I can make many trays of kale chips at once, 
turn it on and walk away. Place the kale leaves flat on the dehydrator
 trays (with no overlapping) and dehydrate until crispy (2-4 hours).

You can also make these chips in the oven. 
 Bake, tossing kale halfway through, until crisp, 
about 15 - 20 minutes.
 Keep an eye on them for doneness.

 Cooking kale does not take away its nutritional benefits. 
Dark green vegetables are powerhouses of nutrients ...
they call it a superfood for a reason. 
Kale offers more iron per ounce than beef!

Creamy tahini dressing
  • 1⁄4 cup tahini.
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice (from 1 to 1 ½ lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil.
  • 1 medium clove garlic, pressed or minced.
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard.
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt.
  • 2 tablespoons water.
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste.

Stay Kozy,
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