Featured Slider

DIY Ornament Garland



We have been saving our pennies so we can have lots of fun and eat lots of yummy food while visiting Utah, so I haven't bought Christmas decor, and all the decor I already had is still in storage that we haven't been able to retrieve quite yet. I was a bit sad missing out on the magical vibes of pretty, glittery ornaments and twinkling lights in our home. So I began hunting for cheap DIY Christmas decor. And so the ornament garlands were found! They honestly look more difficult and more expensive than they are. I only spent $10! Believe it or not, these beautiful ornaments were from the dollar store! I was really so surprised with how well they turned out. I'm debating making more! You might need to spend a little more depending on how big you want your garland. I made two 35 inch garlands, using about 100 ornaments.

Here's what you will need; 


Twine or ribbon (I used twine because it was what I already had on hand)
Scissors
Thumbtacks
Ornaments - Try to get a variety of sizes and colors. I bought 24 large, 24 medium and 60 small.

Measure how long you want your garland to be. I wanted to have them hanging off the top of our two bookshelves, measuring at a curve, also giving a bit extra to pin the twine to the bookshelf, a total of 35 inches for one garland.

About three inches from one end, tie a double knot in the twine or ribbon so the ornaments don't slide off, and begin adding each ornament. Alternate between sizes and colors; one big, two small, one medium, two small, one big, two small and so on and so on... It took me maybe 10 or 15 minutes to string each one together. Each garland used about 55 ornaments. Tie another double knot at the other end to finish it off, keeping the ornaments in place.



To attach the garland, I just stabbed white thumbtacks through the twine and into our cheap IKEA bookshelves, but you could also use command hooks.


And that's it! It's really so simple! Can't complain one bit about cheap and easy decor! I am loving all the beautiful Christmas vibes now in our home! Let me know if you decide to make one! I want to see pics! 

Happy Holidays!


Lost Maples State Park

This past weekend we took a drive to Lost Maples State Park to see some fall leaves since we don't really get to experience fall here in San Antonio. It was about an hour and a half drive, but was so pretty! The weather has been so nice! It's cool, but not cold enough to need gloves or even a jacket really. We had wanted to camp there, but the only tent camping they had you needed to backpack in, 1-3 miles, and our camping gear is not really backpack friendly. Hopefully someday soon we will have gear we need for that! We still had a fun time exploring the area and taking lots of pretty pictures. They said that this fall, the leaves weren't very vibrant, and it seemed that lots of them had blown off, but I will still pleased with the colors that were there.












And a happy birthday to this handsome Bear of mine! I'm so grateful for all of our adventures together. I'm so grateful for him and all he does for us! I'm so blessed and I can't wait to see what many adventures the future holds! 


Pillows of Heaven {Easy, Fluffy Rolls}

With Thanksgiving just this week, I figured I would share my favorite roll recipe. I am not good at making rolls or really breads of any kind. Even if I follow the recipe as close as I can, I usually seem to botch it up. But luckily, this is one recipe that I can successfully make time and time again! These rolls are really just little pillows of heaven. So tasty and so easy. And require no kneading! They do take some time to rise, so plan ahead!



What you need:

1 cup water
1 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup cold water
4 1/2 teaspoons yeast
1/2 cup warm water
4 eggs, beaten
7 1/2 cups flour

In a 6 quart pan bring the 1 cup water to a boil.
Add butter, sugar and salt. Remove from heat.
Add the 1 cup cold water.
Dissolve yeast in the 1/2 cup warm water (not hot).
When first mixture is luke-warm add yeast mixture and beaten eggs. Stir briefly.
Add flour and stir together.
Cover with lid and refrigerate overnight.


The next day, divide dough into fourths.
Roll out each section of dough into a circle on a floured surface. 

Cut into wedges (like how you would cut a pizza) and roll up, beginning with the wide end, to form a crescent shape. Place each on a greased baking sheet, about 12 per sheet. 
Let rise for at least 4 hours, or freeze to rise and bake at another time.
Bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes, until just slightly golden brown.
Makes 3-4 dozen rolls.

Uncooked rolls, waiting to be baked! 



The uncooked crescents can be frozen. Store in freezer bags until ready to use. To use, return them to greased cookie sheets and rise at least 6 hours. Bake as normal.


Rolls in the freezer, wait till solid before transferring to zip lock bags.


Before baking them I brush butter on each one. My aunt brushes them before, and after baking, but that's up to you! And I have found it's best to use salted butter, the only time of year I buy the stuff! 


And my sole baking sheet was being used for something else, 
so I used my cast iron pan, and they baked up beautifully! Best pan ever!  




Enjoy and Happy Thanksgiving! 

Sweet Potato Burritos

I've had sweet potato tacos on my meal plans for probably a near month now but kept putting off making them because I was scared I wouldn't like them. I had a few different recipes I considered making, but I was worried they wouldn't be flavorful enough. 

But I finally decided to make them, and they were pretty good, they weren't super flavorful, and being tacos, they were rather difficult to eat. But the next day I rolled up burritos with the leftovers, which were much easier to eat, and found that they were much more flavorful. I guess the flavors had more time to marinate? But honestly, I ate them for lunch and dinner every day for like 3 days. I was obsessed and am still craving them! These were really quite easy, and I certainly will be including them in my usual meal plan. 


So after some tweaking here is what I would recommend you mix it up either the night or at least the morning before so the flavors have time to marinate, reheat and serve. 




Here's what you will need;

1 teaspoon Chili Powder

1 1/2 teaspoons Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne 
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 medium onion, chopped 
2 bell peppers, chopped
3-4 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, drained
4 tablespoons olive oil
Tortillas

And extra fillings, all optional;


Pico De Gallo

Diced Avocado
Hot Sauce
Cheese* 
Sour Cream*

Directions;


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Peel and dice sweet potatoes. Toss diced potatoes in 2 tablespoons olive oil and all the seasonings, coating evenly, and bake for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. 
While potatoes are baking, heat a large skillet with remaining olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers, and garlic, and caramelize, about 5 minutes.  
Once the potatoes are done, add them to the pan with the veggies, as well as adding the corn and black beans, tossing it all together.

To serve, as I said above, lots of recipes I saw served these as tacos, but I found it far easier to eat as a burrito. So I took a large tortilla, spread some sour cream on, sprinkled shredded cheese, add about 3 spoonfuls of potato mixture, as well as pico, avocado, and hot sauce, and wrap tightly. {Optional} I then popped it in my mini George Forman grill to get those beautiful grill marks and heat it up. (PS; BEST PURCHASE EVER, more on that in another post!)

*This meal can easily be made vegan! Just leave out these items! 


Enjoy!



Adapted from Cooking Classy

General Conference Weekend

The Friday before General Conference, a friend in the ward called me and invited us out to their friends summer home in the Texas Hill Country to stay for the weekend. We were already planning to be out there Saturday morning for Oktoberfest, so we decided to join them!


We tried to head out early Saturday morning to get to Oktoberfest as early as possible. We arrived about 45 minutes after it opened, and luckily it wasn't too busy yet. It was right along main street Fredericksburg, a little German town out in the Hill Country. We've been out to visit it before, and love it, so cute and quaint!





We used to love going to Oktoberfest in Utah at Snowbird, but this one was much bigger. As opposed to just one stage for music and dancing, they had four! We got yummy polish dogs, and walked around the shops.





We made the short drive to the address our friend gave us. The house was quite unassuming on the outside, appearing to have been built in the 70s, maybe the 60s, but the inside was entirely remodeled and so cute! Pictures don't quite do it justice.




They also had a pool and hot tub, as well as a little dock as the back yard met the Guadalupe River.





On top of being an uplifting weekend thanks to General Conference, it was such a fun weekend with friends!



We swam and kayaked (for my first time!), and the boys shot bb-guns.




We roasted hot dogs and smores over the campfire.




Played with their cute little boy.




And ate lots more yummy food!





Thanks to our friends for inviting us! It was such a treat!




I failed to get a picture of my beautiful friend, but we did some maternity pictures recently, so here is just one from our session. So adorable! Love them! And they just welcomed the sweetest baby girl! Good thing we did the maternity session when we did, she decided to come early!




And I've talked about it so many times, but I always use the Google Photos app to backup all my stuff. Well they often times compile these little videos from outings, since the photos are geo-tagged, it will be like "A weekend in DC" or wherever we were that weekend. I usually don't really like the videos, and in the past, I haven't been able to edit it at all, but the video it compiled for this fun weekend was pretty good and I noticed they now allowed me to edit it! So I added some photos and videos, and here we go! So easy to throw it all together, I love how it turned out.



To wrap things up, here are a few of my favorite conference quotes. In case you missed it, you can always watch or listen online! So good! One thing from it that stood out to me was
JOY! 
How great is that? That's what this Gospel is all about; true and lasting JOYI am strengthened through God who I know loves me, as He does all His children. While there are many who do believe there is no proof of his existence, I personally see the proof of His aide and His love clearly in my life. I have spent much of my life void of His aide and the difference has been night and day. I hope that one day, all people can experience the literal change that is only possible through His Love and grace. The happiness, peace, love, and JOY He can give is unmatched by anything this world can give, and unmatched by anything that men can achieve on their own.