Monday, February 22, 2010

I am ready for spring.

Yesterday we were teased with a gorgeous 67 degrees & bright sunshine. It felt like I had been holding my breath for three months and didn't realize it until I was able to exhale & breathe in the warm fresh air. It was so refreshing and then just as suddenly it all went away and I went back to work in cold 45 degree drizzily rain. Ugh. I need the sun to come back, no like I really NEED it to come back.

Because it was a gorgeous weekend, Jason and I were able to spend an entire day together walking around and touring homes for sale in East Nashville (NOT because we're looking for a new home, just for fun). It was the first day we'd had together in two weeks since last weekend he had to work so much with it being Valentine's. Call me selfish, but this weekend went by too fast & I want another day with my man.

This is a house down the street from us that is for sale - it is SO beautiful and I love what they've done to update it and yet keep the old floors, original built-ins and fireplace sconces. It's a 4 bed/2 bath and is listed for $325K
Look at all these gorgeous windows! And unlike ours, they actually open & are not painted shut.
Check out the original builtins - and a huge dining room.
The kitchen was a bit small, but had a lot of counter space & very open to the rest of the house. And beyond the kitchen a mud room. WE NEED A MUD ROOM. That's going to be a huge selling point for our next house someday. Muddy dogs + muddy husband = necessary mud room.
One of the bedrooms downstairs - and it has a huge original built in window seat. LOVE.
Original pedetal sink in the downstairs bath. Adorable claw foot tub.
And check out this amazing master suite upstairs. Freakin amazing. I would actually turn it into a bonus room/office.
And HUGE master bath. love love love.
I love looking at the old homes & how people restore them, its so amazing. We've learned a lot with the house we now have and its been a great starter home, but I do look forward to the day when we have a home that better suits our needs. ie - more closet space, more storage space, a mud room, more countertop space in the kitchen & a bigger bathrooms.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

January Baker's Challenge - Nanaimo Bars

Well I got back on the horse & decided to participate in January's Daring Bakers Challenge. Not that we needed the extra calories around, but it looked fairly easy & not as time consuming as the other challenges often are, so I thought I would give it a shot and make them for Small Group.

And oh. my. word. They were insanely good. It's almost a bad thing that they were so easy to make, because now I want to make these OFTEN. Especially since I know you can make them in peanut butter or mint versions as well. The Small Group seemed to enjoy them as well being as how the plate was empty before the last person left last night.

The January 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Lauren of Celiac Teen. Lauren chose Gluten-Free Graham Wafers and Nanaimo Bars as the challenge for the month. The sources she based her recipe on are 101 Cookbooks and I however, did not make the homemade gluten free graham crackers, because I simply just did not have the time. But this one is definately going in the recpie box!

The bars consist of three layers, the bottom being a mixture of coconut, cocoa powder, almonds and crushed graham crackers. Then, you make a vanilla buttercream layer for the middle and then finish off with a chocolate ganache layer on top. My top layer was a bit more crunchy since I just melted chocolate chips and poured them on top. But still amazingly delicious and super rich. Pairing them with a rich cup of coffee was pure heaven.

Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of mine before they were gone, so I grabbed a couple pics online that looked very similar to how mine turned out.

Thank you to Lauren of Celiac Teen for a choosing a great challenge! It was a fantastic way to kick off the company weight loss competition I'll be participating in starting this next Monday!