TGIF! I really mean that this morning – what a long and dreary week. I swear I didn’t intend for this blog to be a forum for me to complain about the weather, but all of this rain – combined with my nasty cold and a deadline at work – has made me really grumpy all week. I’m counting on some sunshine this weekend – and the WCC tournament! – to get me out of my funk. In the meantime, a few highlights:
I found these cute little ceramic markers while I was out shopping this weekend and they motivated me to start thinking about replanting my herb “garden” (pots). I was really good about planting the basics last year (basil, rosemary, thyme, oregano, Italian parsley), and it was so great to be able to just pop out onto the deck whenever I needed something for cooking (or cocktails). It might still be a little to cold to plant anything yet, but that doesn’t mean I can’t shop for garden accessories. These vintage silverware ones (I’ve seen them at Nordstrom, Anthropologie, Etsy – all over, really) are pretty cute too. And don’t even get me started on the planters/pots that are on display everywhere – luckily I have limited space, or I could really do some damage.
Tonight my friend Krista and I are throwing a mini-dinner party for some friends, mainly as an excuse to make Corned Beef and Cabbage (recipes coming Monday – get excited:)) for an early St. Patrick’s Day celebration. I saw these on Pinterest, and thought they would be a fun dessert for the kids that are coming to dinner. Super easy – my friend Jenn once gave me the invaluable tip that you can always use a cake mix for cupcakes, so long as you make homemade frosting (I love this recipe) – and who doesn’t love Lucky Charms?
I bought this coconut macaroon candle on a whim the other day, and it makes me so happy to light it as soon as I get home each night. The coconut scent reminds me of Easter and Hawaii and cookies and all sorts of yummy things – and it’s about half the price of most of the candles at Anthro, so should you find yourself in need of a great hostess gift, this would be it!
I’ve been making a big effort lately to make myself a healthy smoothie for breakfast -starting out the day with protein, vitamins and minerals, fruits and veggies, etc. I usually just do almond milk, frozen berries, and my favorite protein powder (which includes powdered kale, woop!), but with all the buzz about green smoothies these days, this week I’ve been trying to do that instead. I used this recipe (she gives you two, I kind of do a combination of both), and it really is true that you can’t taste the spinach (or kale). While you will never hear me telling anyone to give up coffee, there really is something to be said for starting your morning with a big glass of greens. And it’s that much easier to ignore the pastry case at Starbucks when you go get your coffee afterwards.
Remember the muffins I talked about on Monday? I made them again – a healthier version this time – and they were SO good. Better than the original, IMHO. I just substituted 7 Tbsp coconut oil for the butter, and in lieu of 1.5 cups white flour I used 1/2 cup white flour, 1/3 cup whole wheat flour, 1/3 cup oat flour, and 1/3 cup almond meal. You could use whatever blend of flours you like, and while the heavier flours/meals make the muffin a little more dense, they give the muffin an oatmeal/nutty flavor that made them even more delicious than the white flour version. I also used brown sugar in place of 1/2 cup of the white sugar (using 1/2 cup brown and 1/4 cup white rather than all 3/4 cup white – and they were still pretty sweet, so I think you could leave out the white sugar altogether if you wanted). I omitted the crumble topping, threw in a little coconut with the blueberries, and the result was something that, while no green smoothie, is far more passable as breakfast than the sweeter version I made earlier. Healthy and delicious!
Have a great weekend, everyone! I hope it’s filled with sunshine and college basketball!