DIY Curtains

I have a love/hate relationship with curtains, window treatments, blinds....whatever you want to call them. I love the way the look. The character they bring to the room. The color and print you can add to a room....but I hate that they cover up the window. I like to be able to look out and see everything. I don't like being "closed in". I also love the trim around our windows so I hate to cover it up.

plantation shutters

Now, all that being said if I could have these on all my windows ( which I will some day!! ) I wouldn't mind. I love the way plantation shutters look and how it still looks "airy" and open. Unfortunately these are not at the top of my husbands priority list right now, mostly because they are not cheap:) and I have a LOT of windows in my home. Someday....Someday....

Meanwhile my husband wanted to have something on our bedroom windows. We live in the country with no neighbors behind us so I wasn't in a hurry to cover them up. I searched every store and internet sight I could find with no luck. So, I made my own of course:)

Finding material was even harder than finding curtains. I ended up using shower curtains:) They were too short for my windows and I liked the look of the "blocks" so I found the white at Hobby Lobby to add to the top. I cut the shower curtain in half and then attached the white block with "no sew" tape ( also from Hobby Lobby ). I used bamboo sticks for the curtain rods ( a pack of 3 for $10 at Target...which was perfect for my 3 window bedroom ) and my husband made the hooks at his work. I didn't have to trim the ends and the top I just folded over and used the clip rings. They turned out really well. Next best thing to Plantation Shutters I suppose:)

Mary Elizabeth


Happy Memorial Day!

How are you spending today? We don't have any plans, but some yard work and remembering those that gave the ultimate sacrifice. 

Every Sunday at church all the military flags (also the POW flag) are walked to the platform and our Pastor reads off the names of the those that died the past week and then prays for those families. Did you know that several died last week and that we still have 1 missing in action? I love this because not only does it still make it real for the adults as a constant reminder that the war is still going on and the sacrifice being made, but also for our children. The boys now salute the flag when they see it and it means something to them.

Remember those  and their families that made the ultimate sacrifice for us!



Coffee Creamer Update

I had to revise the recipe for coffee creamer that I used in this post. That recipe called for maple syrup as the sweetener. Even though I really liked that creamer, it just wasn't quite sweet enough. (Please don't tell my sister Mary about this post. I am supposed to be on a no sugar diet with her. Obviously, I am slipping a tiny bit.) I did a little more searching for recipes and after looking at a couple I came up with the following:

Coffee Creamer
1 can sweetened condensed milk (I used the small can, because that's what I had on hand)
1 1/2 cups of heavy whipping cream (also what I had on hand, I think half and half would also work. Milk would work also, it's just going to be a lot thinner)
1/2 Madagascar vanilla bean (next time I will use a whole vanilla bean)
Simmer this for a couple of minutes, then let it cool.

This was so much better. The sweetened condensed milk made it taste more like Coffee Mate Creamer.Try this recipe for coffee creamer. I think you will like so much better.

Have a great weekend,



Friday's Treat

This week I decided to make a traditional Vanilla ( or white ) Cupcake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting. Nothing special or extravagant but tasty, tender and delectable at the same time. 

The cake recipe is a "no fail" recipe that I use ALL the time. It is so easy to make and has that box mix texture.....It is REALLY good!! The Frosting recipe I found on line. I think it was from William Sanoma. No matter which one you use they are all pretty much the same. 

They were another hit this week at the office so that is all I can ask for, right?   :)

I hope ya'll have a great weekend. Mine will be spent with my little darling ( husband is working ) enjoying the warm sunny weather!!!


Mary Elizabeth

Vanilla Layer Cake

1 C Butter
2 C Sugar
3 Large Eggs
2 1/2 tsp Vanilla ( I usually just make it 3 )
3 C Flour
4 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/2 C warm Milk

Blend Butter and Sugar until fluffy. Add Eggs and Vanilla. Blend well. Add the dry ingredients and then slowly pour in the warm milk. Mix until batter is smooth. Pour into 2 9" cake pans or into prepared cupcake pans and bake.
Cake 350 for about 35 min
Cupcakes 350 for about 15 min


Friday's Treat

This week I made one of my favorite little sweet treats:) S'more Bites!!
They are every bit as good as you can imagine:) There is a bit of a debate as to who came up with this clever little way of making S'mores without the bonfire but despite what my Sister Christine will tell you I made them first;)
They are so simple to make and require very little ingredients ( as real S'mores don't either ). This is all you will need to make the perfect little bite size S'more.

The crust is graham crackers and butter. I process the crackers until they are really fine. You don't want any big pieces of cracker because that tends to not hold together as well since it is so small. The more butter you use the firmer your crust will be.
 I made about 100 of these for my husband to take today and that took about 5 packs of graham crackers and about 1 1/2 cups of butter ( more or less ). Press into the little muffins cups press down the centers and up the sides a little bit so you can fill it with chocolate after baking. Bake for 8-10min at 350.

 Melt the chocolate chips ( Hershey's Chocolate Chips are the best, they are the only ones I use for my baking ) and spoon just enough to come to the top of the crust. Cover with Marshmallows and put back into the oven under the broiler. Now, keep a very close eye on them because the marshmallows will burn quickly!! I leave mine in just long enough to melt the marshmallows and brown the tops just a bit.

That is all there is to it!! So simple yet so delicious!!  I must warn you about these little things before you make them though.......You will eat them ALL almost immediately! :) it is so hard not too. They are just the perfect little size to pop into your mouth. These are perfect for parties or just a little treat with the kiddos:)


Mary Elizabeth


How do you drink your coffee?

My husband says I will take a little coffee with my cream. I don't think this extremely accurate, but close. He also says it runs in the family. My Dad and sisters can though the creamer too. I usually never run out of Coffee Mate Creamer. We use all the flavors, but LOVE the Pumpkin Spice that only comes out during the Holidays.

Well, my situation started Friday morning. I made coffee and used all the creamer. Being the optimistic person that I am, it wasn't a big deal. I would just go to the grocery store later. But, with a 3, 2, 1 and almost 4 week old, later was not a good time. Jax, the 4 week old, would sleep. No problem with him. Now Rhiannon, the 1 year old, she was in some mood on Friday. Not the type of mood that makes you want to get shoes, coats and load all four of them into the mini van mind you. So, needless to say, I never made it to the store. Then comes Friday night. I really need some coffee. So, me in my ever state of mind that pretty much ANYTHING can be made from scratch. I googled coffee creamer recipes, and a ton come up. This creamer recipe is the one that I used. I made the Pumpkin Spice one. Let me tell you that you have never had creamer in your coffee till you use this creamer. She has a couple of different flavors listed. I'm making the French Vanilla tonight. Try it, you might never go back to store bought creamer again.



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