Friday, August 30, 2013

Banana Cream Cheese Muffins with Streusel Topping



Banana bread was my introduction into baking, and for the longest time it was what I was known for. It took me a long time to start venturing out into cupcakes, cakes, and other snacks. The hubby and I are going to the family lake house this weekend, and I have some perfectly blackened bananas just waiting to be make into bread! I know the family will be happy if I show up with banana bread, but this time I'm adding a little twist. I've started making muffins filled with a cream cheese filling and a streusel topping. The original recipe was from the women's guild at my childhood church. I've taken some liberties with it, and made it my own. I'll post the substitutions I made at the end.




Can you tell I've used this a lot?








CREAM CHEESE FILLING:

-4oz cream cheese
-2 c sugar
-2Tbs milk

Blend in a mixer, spoon into a piping bag, and pipe into the center of each batter cup.

 



STREUSEL TOPPING:

There are tons of ways to make this. You can add flaxseed, chia seeds, skip the granola, or whatever you like.

-1c granola
-1/2c rolled oats 
-2Tbs brown sugar
-2Tbs butter
-Squeeze of honey
-Dash of cinnamon

 Combine all with fingers or a fork. Sprinkle desired amount onto each battered cup before baking.

Since I made muffins instead of bread, I cut my baking time down. For regular size muffins I bake them for 30 min, and for minis I bake them for about 20 min.

 








RECIPE SUBSTITUTIONS:

I rarely make the same thing the same way twice. These are some of the substitutions I often use.

-1/2 c BUTTER SPREAD if I don't have the real stuff.
-1/2 c SUGAR and 1/2 c BROWN SUGAR (I usually leave out the other 1/2 cup).
-You can use HONEY also for more depth of sweetness.
-Not that this is a healthy recipe, but I usually use 1/2 c ALL PURPOSE FLOUR and 1/2 c WHOLE WHEAT OR MULTIGRAIN FLOUR to make it a touch healthier.
-I usually use ALMOND MILK, because that's what I have around. SOY MILK works also.
-If I have it in the fridge, I throw in 1/2 c SOUR CREAM or YOGURT for added moistness.
-I'm also guilty of adding a dash of BOOZE to almost everything I bake. Dark or spiced rum work great with banana bread!
-And the best tip of all, wait until your bananas are almost black. They are at their sweetest and give the bread the best flavor.


Good Luck!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Pinspiration


I am a Pinterest junkie, and have an entire board dedicated to Crafternoons. It's filled with fun crafting and diy projects that I'll do "someday." Well, someday is here. I am determined to start actually doing some of these. Here's a darling little elephant garland I found that was made by using a pattern to cut the same shape out of varying scrapbook paper. I've been wanting something to hang in the blank space over our fish tank, so what better than a fish garland? I went a little further and used a piece of driftwood to hang them from and painted in matching colors.









Sunday, August 18, 2013

Things I Love From Etsy: iPhone Cases

I finally upgraded my phone, after what seems like ages. My poor old phone was desperately struggling to keep up with menial tasks, and my husband was constantly making fun of me for it. I'm tempted to dip it in bronze and make a paper weight out of it!

So, now that I'm back in the modern age, I need a fun new case to go with my new phone. I was browsing Etsy yesterday, and found some of the cutest cases. Now, it's just trying to decide which one I want! Here are some of my favorites.


{Arete}
{Dream Zone}
{Ha Ha Cup}
{Fine Art Designs}
{Sunny Talk}
{Mini Pocket 2012}
{Basement Twentytwo}

Friday, August 16, 2013

Industrial Shelving

Recently, the hubby and I were faced with the decision of whether or not we wanted to renew our lease. We felt like we were ready for a change, but we really want our next move to be into a home that we own. Our dilemma is that we are running out of space in our little rental, but we would be paying about $500 more a month to move into a bigger place. That's money we could be saving for a down payment. So, we've decided to suck it up and stay where we are. Our solution is to spend a little bit of money adding storage to our little nest. Our next big project will be to build shelving in our living room, in order to give us a place to put our records, electronics, decorations, etc. Here's what I've been looking at, and am over the moon for!

{HGTV}
{Simplified Building}

{Ascot Friday}

 
{A Beautiful Mess}

                                 I can't wait to get started, and show you how it all turns out!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Pallet Potting Bench


So, as you may know, I have a serious love for recycling pallets. I recently made a low table for our gazebo,  I made a headboard for our guest room, and even our coffee table is made from pallets. I had made some benches for our back yard a while back, but we hadn't used them much since we set up the gazebo, so I decided to cut them down and make this little beauty! My husband loves to garden and has plants everywhere inside and outside of the house. He's been wanting a potting bench, so I figured it was about time he had one! What do you think?




Friday, August 9, 2013

Huff Baby Shower Package



So, a dear friend of mine, who's baby shower I recently threw, is now in charge of throwing one for a friend of her own. Knowing how busy of a woman she is, especially with a new baby, I volunteered to make some items for the event. The theme is shabby chic with an elephant motif, in coral, aqua, baby pink, and cream. How charming! Excitedly, I put together a custom package for her, which has given me the idea to offer a party package in my Etsy shop! I made cupcake toppers, gift tags, dessert labels, and garlands. Take a look!














Friday, August 2, 2013

Summer Door Hanger



I've really been slacking on this! Time to get back to it!

Well, here's a simple little summer project that I did. Over the holidays I made a bunch of door hangers from recycled pallets. I cut the pallets into pieces, drilled some small holes into them, then ran some thick wire through the holes to hang them before painting them. I made some fall themed, and then some Christmas, most of which I gave as gifts.

I had a stack of them still lying around in the garage, and decided that I needed to make something summery for our door. I ended up just flipping one around and painting the back side, which is perfect, because I have two in one! Here's how it turned out.