Thursday, June 30, 2016

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strawberries

Welcome to the last day of June?!  I say this all the time, but how did we get to the end of the month so fast?!  Where’s the pause button?

In other news, I sat down last night with my Feedly favs and went through 3,523 articles.  The practical thing would have been to space it out over the course of my vacation, but because I seem to always go from zero to a million regarding basically everything in my life, there I was.

But!  You can take advantage of my “dedication” by checking out some of my favorite links!  I’m going to have to break this down into a couple installments because I’m the #1 fan of everything and basically save everything as a favorite!  I’m also providing commentary this time because…why not?!

- There’s a 400-Person Wait List for These RosΓ©-Flavored Gummy Bears :  Alcohol and gummy bears?  Yes, please!  I also checked out the Sugarfina web site (the store selling the gummy bears) & I’m pretty much in love with everything they have! 

- Butter-Roasted Cherry Swirl Overnight Oats. : I love everything Jessica does & this recipe looks incredible.  Also, I pretty much save every.single.one of her recipes in my Feedly favorites.

- Almost So Close to Amazing : KariAnne’s blog is a newer read for me, but I love all of her posts.  Her writing is incredibly welcoming & I can’t wait for her new posts to pop up in my reader!

- Choosing door hardware for a farmhouse : The hardware they chose for their house is very similar to the hardware in our house!  Also, their house looks amazing!

- ‘The Day I Saw Death’ And 21 Other Real-Life Stories Of The Supernatural :  I’m super into true creepy stories & this group doesn’t disappoint!

- 7 Common Blogging Mistakes To Avoid – Infographic : I’ve been slooowly implementing some of these things & have actually noticed a slight increase in my blog following.  Social media is the key to blogging success & I wish I had more time to devote to it!

- Daddy’s Special Day : I’ve been following the story of Martin & Emily for a while & was so sad to hear of Martin’s passing.  Even though I don’t know Emily or her family in real life, my thoughts are with them during this extremely difficult time.

 - 24 Decadent Ice Cream Cakes That Are Better Than A Boyfriend :  What’s better than cake?  Ice cream cake!  All of these ice cream cakes look fantastic!

- Design Motifs: Flamingo Flair :  I’m slightly obsessed with flamingoes so I love seeing the different ways they can be incorporated throughout a home!

- Strawberry Shortcake Just Got a Serious Upgrade :  I’m sharing my newest favorite strawberry recipe tomorrow, but this boozy strawberry shortcake looks amazing!  I might have to make it this weekend!  All of the strawberries, all of the time!

Check back tomorrow for my current favorite strawberry recipe & a list of 4th of July links!!

Also, what are your favorite web things lately?

 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

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Fitbit Alta

I’m suuuper competitive…

about things that shouldn’t even be a competition!

Growing up, I never played sports because I have zero hand-eye-coordination, so I never got to feel the competition there.

I’m also not genius smart, so academic competition wasn’t my thing, either.

My competitive side awakens when I make a competition out of things that have no business being competitive.

Like one time I saw some random person on Facebook advertising their cake making business and I thought that I could have a cake business that would be more successful except I forgot that I can’t make cakes and can’t run businesses, but mine would be soooo much better, I just knew it!

Yeah, I’m pretty fun to have around.

My latest competition is the Fitbit.

A lot of people at work are doing the whole Fitbit thing and I had to join along, even though fitness really isn’t my thing.  So, of course, I’m going from zero to 10,000 steps because I want to win all the imaginary prizes!

But!  I actually got the Fitbit for the sleep tracker.  I knew my sleep was terrible and the Fitbit has so far confirmed it…

Fitbit Sleep Tracking

19 restless times?!  Welcome to my life.

Are you unnecessarily competitive about something?!  I hope it’s not just me…but it probably is!

Oh, and if you want to add me to your Fitbit friends, my email is rockin2thesound@yahoo.com!

Monday, June 27, 2016

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menu plan monday

Confession:  menu planning is totally not my thing…but because I’m trying to adult, I’ve started making menu plans. 

My mom can go into the kitchen and whip up incredible food with whatever ingredients she has.  Me…not so much.  My meals need to be preplanned forever!

This week’s plan revolves around things we already had at our house minus a couple ingredients here and there that we went grocery shopping to pick up.

Menu Plan for 06.27-0/7.01

1.  Chicken & Stuffing
2.  Ziti & Garlic Bread
3.  Sloppy Joes & Mac + Cheese
4.  Beer Brats & Coleslaw
5.  Steak & Noodles

 

Friday, June 24, 2016

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Sorry For Partying

It’s finally Friday!  This one is a super sweet one for me because I’m on work vacation for a week!

This weekend is going to be spent ripping up carpet at our old place.  I just can’t get away from the home renovations!

I’m going to pencil in some time in the next week to catch up on my favorite blogs, though!  I use Feedly to keep all of my must reads in one place.  I currently have 4,254 unread articles, so needless to say, I’ll be very busy catching up!

Here are some links that I’ve been loving lately.  I’m sure I’ll have a ton more when I’m done reading my 4,000+ unread articles!

- 15 La Croix Cocktails to Start the Summer Off Right
- Frozen Cherry Cosmos
- Punch Up Your Real Estate Listing By Posing In A Panda Costume In Every Photo
- The Incredible Story of How an 1898 Dog-Trot Style Home Was Discovered Underneath Nursing Home Walls
- DIY Watermelon Floppy Hat

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

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Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

You'll be so proud of me...

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

I legit measured everything out this time so I could provide an actual recipe!

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria
 Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria
I wanted to make a nonalcoholic version of my watermelon sangria because even though that drink is fantastic, you can't have alcohol all the time. I know there wasn't a ton of alcohol in it to begin with, but this new version is 100% alcohol free!

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

Now, let's talk about pureeing watermelon?! When I was running watermelon chunks through my food processor, I almost had an out of body experience because I don't know who I am anymore. 10 years ago, you couldn't make me eat watermelon and now here I am pureeing it?! That was also the first time I used a food processor within the last 10 years.

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria
Next, the lemonade.  You can use whatever lemonade you want, but because I'm having a midlife crisis, I made homemade lemonade.  There are a million recipes out there.  I just did a simple syrup on the stove and added it to freshly squeezed lemon juice.  Since we're on the subject of small household appliances not used in 10 years, while we were moving, I discovered an electric citrus juicer that I had still in the box.  I fired it up for this recipe and I'm in love.  That thing juiced those lemons like it was made for it, because, well, it was!

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria

Nonalcoholic Watermelon Sangria
by Tiff @ onthecreekblog.com June-22-2016
A nonalcoholic version of watermelon sangria with intense watermelon flavor and lots of fruit!
Ingredients
  • 1Cup Fresh Watermelon Juice
  • 3Cups Lemonade
  • 1Cup Watermelon Chunks
  • 1Cup Sliced Strawberries
  • 2Cups Ice
  • 1Cup Water/Green Tea (optional)
Instructions
To make fresh watermelon juice, take 2 cups of chopped watermelon and run through the food processor. Then, run the mixture through a fine mesh strainer to remove pulp. Next, take whatever chopped/sliced fruit you have and add it with ice to the bottom of a pitcher. For this recipe I used watermelon and strawberries that I had on hand. The amount of fruit you add is totally up to you. I like a lot of chopped fruit in my drink. Finally, add the watermelon juice and lemonade and stir. If the watermelon flavor is too intense, add a cup of water or green tea to mellow it out.
Details
Prep time: 10 mins Cook time: 0 mins Total time: 10 mins Yield: 5+cups

PS:  The pitcher and the glasses are from the Habitat For Humanity ReStore!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

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You guys...my kitchen will never be this clean again!

Kitchen RevealI actually took these pictures a couple weeks before we officially moved in so I could share them with my local Habitat For Humanity ReStore. We purchased our cabinetry from there and I wanted to show them what we did with it. I don't think I even cooked a meal in the kitchen prior to taking these photos!

As I said, the cabinets are from the ReStore. Here's what they looked like before my mom and I painted them:

Kitchen cabinets before being painted

We used two cans of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in French Linen to paint the entire cabinetry. I wanted to paint the cabinets because they were in rough shape and I love painted cabinetry.

Kitchen reveal

I'll have to do a post all about how we painted the cabinets. I will tell you this, though, painting with chalk paint really is the best.

Kitchen reveal

We decided to remove the original cabinetry because even though it was handmade, it was in poor condition.  I also hated the wrap around that the old kitchen had.  By re configuring the layout, we ended up adding several more cabinets than what was previously there.  By removing the door where the refrigerator is now, we were also able to add more space.

Kitchen reveal

You can read the sorry story about how I picked out my appliances here.  The refrigerator is a Whirlpool and the oven is a Maytag.

Kitchen reveal


We have a Delta faucet and double sinks.  No link for the sinks because the company that installed the granite brought the sink and put it in.  We never actually saw the sink until the install.

Kitchen reveal
 
Drawer pulls and a post on how I love them!

Kitchen reveal

We decided to do the same flooring throughout the entire house.  It was supposed to be super easy to install, but my husband hated installing it!  I like it because it was budget friendly and waterproof.

Kitchen reveal

We chose a granite counter top that we ended up having professionally installed because our price included free installation.  We chose granite because even though it was fairly expensive, it was cheaper than quartz yet only a few dollars more per square foot than the less expensive options.  I couldn't find a link for the exact color, but it was available at our local Home Depot.

So there you have it!  In case you missed it, you can check out my 'before' photos here.  This kitchen has made a huge transformation!

Monday, June 20, 2016

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Confession time...

I stopped writing the renovation revelation posts after month one because the renovation just wasn't fun for me anymore.

Moving Day

Don't get me wrong, I still love home renovation. I'll scroll through Zillow like it's my job, running numbers and looking at blurry pictures of roofs and interiors. Just last week, I even talked my husband into going to look at another house. My love for home renovation goes so deep that I need a bumper sticker saying "I brake for foreclosures"!

Moving Day


So why wasn't my renovation fun? Because I was waiting to move into it. I've waited 9 years for this, but the last 6 months seemed to drag on forever. It doesn't help that I'm the most impatient person on the planet. I even called our home a 'house of lies!!!' when things got really bad. I would see all of the beautiful things being done to our house and have to go home to my old house, which was far from perfect. When our water lines froze in the old house over the winter, it really sent me over the edge. I thought I would never get out of there!

Moving Day


But, there was a light at the end of the tunnel and here we are at the new house! When we were in the car, with the cats in their carriers, it finally became real to me. Like, this is actually happening!

I'm having so much fun decorating. My husband actually decorated most of the house, though! He doesn't like things laying around, so he just started putting things up on the walls! This house makes it so easy to decorate. Everything seems to look good everywhere!


Moving Day

Our decorating style is so weird! It's a mix of our old things as well as a ton of ReStore/thrift store/yard sale finds. Our comforter in our bedroom is way too modern to be in our house, but yet here it is with our antiques and stuff we bought at random sales! It's a total mishmash and I love it.

Friday, June 17, 2016

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This is the last room of the 'before' pictures and it's an extra special one because I'm currently typing this in the actual room!

Here's a look at our downstairs bedroom before we began renovations...

bedroom before renovation


The OSB on the floor and the baseboard heater.

bedroom before renovation


Here's the view looking out at the back of the property. Another baseboard heater and the furnace pipe running up the wall through the basement.

bedroom before renovation


The doors to the kitchen and the bathroom.

bedroom before renovation

The ceiling fan and visible wiring. One of the things that was different about this house was all of the wiring. Since there was no drywall in some parts of the house, the wiring couldn't be buried in the walls!

bedroom before renovation

The closet.

This room looks much different now and I can't wait to show you all of the 'after' photos!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

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DIY spice shelf above the oven | On The Creek Blog
A DIY spice shelf above the oven!

A full kitchen reveal is coming soon, but here's a look at the DIY spice shelf my husband & I made for above the oven!

It is one of my favorite parts of the kitchen.  I love having my baking supplies at my fingertips!
























Wednesday, June 15, 2016

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Watermelon Sangria

I found my summer drink.

When I was a kid, I absolutely loved fruit. In my adult life, I've always thrown away more fruit than what I ate.

Well that's about to change!

Watermelon Sangria

This year, I'm all about watermelon. I've consumed more watermelon this year than in the past 10 years combined. I used to avoid whole watermelons altogether because it was just too much fruit and would probably go to waste anyway. This year, I have already bought two of them!

I don't know who I am anymore.

Watermelon Sangria

Over Memorial Day weekend, I bought some strawberries, blueberries and a watermelon. I only had a little bit of everything left, so I decided to throw it in a pitcher with some lemonade and a can of of Bud Light Water-Melon-Rita I had floating around and call it awesome. It turned out way better than I hoped because recipe development isn't my thing but apparently trashed up recipes are?! It was so good that I made another batch!

Watermelon Sangria

Watermelon Sangria
by Tiff @ onthecreekblog.com June-15-2016
A refreshing summer drink with real fruit and lemonade.
Ingredients
  • Lemonade
  • 1 can Bud Light Water-Melon-Rita
  • Watermelon Chunks
  • Blueberries
  • Sliced Strawberries
  • Ice
Instructions
Grab a pitcher and put some ice in the bottom. Then, put your fresh fruit in there, adding however much you want or have on hand. Add the can of Water-Melon-Rita and fill the rest of the pitcher up with lemonade and stir. I didn't put exact measurements so you can customize it to fit your pitcher or tastes! If you want a ton of fruit, add it! More alcohol? Add it!
Details
Prep time: 5 mins Cook time: Total time: Yield: Pitcher

Check out the nonalcoholic version here!

Watermelon Sangria

PS: The pitcher came from the Habitat For Humanity ReStore!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

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Russell

Our family dog, Russell, passed away on Thursday. He was 16 years old.

He was born on my grandparents' dairy farm and had lived with my family all of his life.

He was there during my middle school and high school years and I was blessed to have him there for my early adult years too. He was such a good dog and companion and I'm going to miss him very much.

Friday, June 10, 2016

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It's time for the bathroom "before" photos!

bathroom before renovations


Weird angles aside, the reason I'm posting this photo is because of the lights! When we were changing them out, we discovered that the one on the left was actually just a shop light!

bathroom before renovations

The tub! I know these tub styles are a thing in log homes, but it wasn't going to be in mine! Even though it was a whirlpool tub, it just didn't provide the space I wanted to use it as both a shower and a bathtub.

bathroom before renovations


The toilet and baseboard heater.

bathroom before renovations


Remember how all of the cabinets in the kitchen were handmade? Well, this bathroom vanity was handmade too! I absolutely love those mirrors and wished I could fit them into my new design.

What we did to this space is so awesome! I can't wait to show you!

Thursday, June 09, 2016

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how to make a favicon

There are some changes happening to my blog!

First up, I changed my overall blog design!

new blog design

I tried to make the design as simple as possible. I plan on adding some buttons along the sidebar where I'll showcase things like my home tour, recipes and my chalk painted pieces.

I also updated my favicon and thought I'd share a little tutorial on how to make one.

But first:

What is a favicon?

A favicon is the little icon that goes next to the url when you're viewing a web page.

Here's what mine looked like before:

favicon


Why do you need a favicon? 

You need a favicon to set your blog apart from the sea of other blogs out there. It's yet another way to personalize your space on the web. Whenever someone clicks over to your blog, they'll see your little icon next to it.

Plus, it looks really cool in Feedly:

feedly favicons


My favicon also appears in my pins on Pinterest so every time someone sees my favicon, they know it's me!

Rich Pins


I wanted to change up my icon because I got tired of the heart one I've been using. I chose a pink + sign because I thought it was cute and bold at the same time.

How to create a favicon

Creating a favicon is incredibly easy!

The size of a favicon is 16x16 pixels and must be saved as .png, .gif or .ico

To make my favicon, I actually just created a new design in PicMonkey and set it to 16x16 pixels.

PicMonkey Design

From there, I picked a font and made the +, but there are so many other things you can do. I've seen logos and pictures being used a favicons and they look awesome. Personally, I chose my favicon because my blog name is so long and I really didn't have a logo created to fit within the 16x16 space. In the future, I might change my favicon to something more personal to my brand, but I like mine right now.

Making a favicon is a simple thing you can do to further brand your blog!

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

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Killdeer

Something I'm going to miss about our old house are the Killdeer families that took up residence in our driveway almost every year we lived there.  The babies were so cute!

Killdeer

Killdeer

Killdeer

Killdeer

Killdeer

Because our new house is made of logs, there are about a million nests hanging out on the sides of it!  I can't escape the birds!
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