Friday, November 23, 2012

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

For many, Christmas is a time to reunite with friends and family, share stories over a warm, bountiful meal, and give loved ones a special gift.

For many, Christmas is a time to celebrate the life of Jesus Christ.  To join together and share joy, pray for peace, and rejoice in His love.

But many are not thinking of turkey and mistletoe, toys and goodies, corn cob pipes and button noses.  They are thinking of water.  Something as simple as water.  Something we let run freely from our taps without a second thought.  Something we bath in that is safe enough to drink.  Something we don't think twice about giving to our children.

Many.  1 billion people.  Many do not have clean drinking water.  But we can change that.

I can change it.

You can change it.

This year, the most wonderful time of the year, I am going to make a change.  I am going to help someone get clean drinking water.  And if you want to make this time of the year, a time to give back, a time to make a difference, a time to give clean water, please donate to Charity Water.

And since my birthday is Christmas Eve and there is so very little that I need, I pledge to give up my birthday so others may have water.

If you want to wish me a happy birthday, I'm asking you to give $3 so others may have clean drinking water.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

It's Almost Christmas!

And by almost, I mean: 6 weeks.  6 WEEKS?!

This time last year, I had a 4 week-old baby and I was just trying to figure out how to be a mom.  For all of you parents out there, you know this is a time that can't quite be explained, but it's glorious in its own right.... let's leave it at that.  But more importantly, I had no time, energy, or brain power to plan Christmas baking; I didn't even make a single batch of my Grandma's shortbread.  *sigh*

This year though.... oh, this year there shall be baking.  Shortbread, peppermint patties, chocolate chip cookie dough truffles, buckeye bark, gingerbread cookie with eggnog frosting, pretzel turtles, and heck why not whiskey, caramel, bacon bark too!

I better get started!  This elf has a lot to do in 6 weeks :)

What will you be baking, creating, enjoying this season?

Friday, July 27, 2012

Summer Berry Shortcakes

Recently, a good friend asked me to help out to make a not-so-sweet birthday treat for her son.  I was, of course, delighted but I had never made strawberry shortcakes before.  I figured, how hard can it be?  Let's give it  a go.  It didn't take me very long to realize that they are, in fact, quite easy.  So easy even you can do it.  So, if you're looking for the perfect dessert to follow a sunny grilling extravaganza with friends, these light, berry-licious, comforting shortcakes are just what you want.

For the shortcakes, you need:

2 cups cake flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup sugar *see note below
4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt  (I use Pink Himalayan Salt)
3/4 cup cold butter (I use frozen butter), cut into small pieces
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
* I use a combination of 1/2 cup white sugar and 1/4 cup brown sugar because I like the flavor that brown sugar imparts to baked goods.  You can, however, use all white sugar if you prefer.

What you need for the berries:

Approximately 6 cups of berries: strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries... this is where you can really get creative and play slave to your taste buds.  Pick what you love, then add about 2 heaping tablespoons icing sugar to the berries, the juice of one lemon, and a dash of cinnamon.  Mix it all together to allow the sugar to pull the juice out of the berries to create delicious, juicy macerated berries.

To do:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a food processor, pulse together the dry ingredients.  Add the frozen butter pieces and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with pea-sized bits of butter remaining, about 10-12 times.  In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup cream and the 2 eggs; pour over the flour mixture and pulse until the batter just comes together. *I use frozen butter pieces because I like the biscuits to be flaky and fluffy.  You can, of course, use butter from the fridge.  The point of using the food processor, instead of your hands to bring this dough together, is to keep the butter cold and not blended in fully.  These biscuits, much like pie, are made flaky by the butter not binding completely with the flour so when they bake the butter melts and reacts, puffs up to create delicious flaky pockets.  Overworking the dough with your warm hands will often create a dense, heavy biscuit.  So... the key is to keep the butter cold.

Using a cookie scoop, measure out the dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake until lightly golden, about 12-14 minutes for minis (~20 minutes for larger biscuits).  Transfer to wire rack to cool.

To serve, gently slice open the shortcakes with a serrated knife.  Spoon berries and their liquid over the bottom halves.  Then, top with whipped cream and replace the top halves of the biscuits.

*To make the whipped cream, pour whipping cream into the bowl of your mixer fitted with the metal whisk attachment.  You can, at this time, add vanilla and a bit of sugar to transform 'boring old whipping cream' into the much more posh Chantilly Cream... ooooh chantilly cream?!  Start your mixer about about 4 or 6 and increase speed as the cream begins to thicken.  You're all done when soft peaks form, chill in the fridge until ready to serve.

Now, you could serve strawberry shortcakes to your friends; I have nothing against the traditional, and still very delicious dessert.  Or, you could float in through a waft of smoky BBQ, the sun shining down, cold beverages dotting the table strewn with empty plates and satisfied smiles to tempt your guests with fresh shortcakes topped with macerated summer berries and Chantilly cream.  Go ahead, do it.  You'll become a domestic goddess in 2 seconds flat.

And.... voila!  

Friday, July 6, 2012

Bourbon Pecan Banana Muffins

So apparently I've missed baking... That's the only explanation I have to the baking splurge that has occurred over the last two days.  First, it was a Pinterest inspired cinnamon braid that was so delightful I might just give up cinnamon buns altogether.  Then, some delicious cakes for a friend.  And why not finish it all off with some amazing banana muffins?  I have discovered a wonderful new baking blog full of deliciousness just waiting to come to life.  And because I can never do anything 'by the book', I took one of her recipes as inspiration and made it my own.

Wanna have a super crazy delicious muffin with a bit of a kick?  Well then, you will need:

1 cup of pastry flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, softened
2 eggs, well-beaten
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 3-4)
2 tbsp bourbon
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin tin with papers.

2. In a medium-sized bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

3. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Add well-beaten eggs and bananas. Beat on medium speed for three minutes. Add lemon juice and bourbon, beat 30 seconds.

4. Add flour mixture and beat until just combined.

5. Fold in chocolate chips and chopped pecans.

6. Using a cookie scoop, fill muffin papers with 2 scoops of batter (or 3 if you like 'em on the bigger side, like me).  Bake for approximately 22 minutes or when they spring back slightly to the touch.

7. Cool completely on wire rack.

8. Enjoy!

I do believe these will be perfect with a cappuccino :)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Mmmm Berry Buttercream

Just a quick post this week of a tried and true.  I am a big fan of chocolate cake.  Like, maybe the biggest.  I don't really find vanilla to be all that exciting, nor am I happily riding along on the red velvet bandwagon.  I do, however, adore a rich chocolate cake.  And that is likely why I love my Devil's Food Chocolate Cake recipe (noted in an earlier post).

Gracie and I often enjoy a play date with our new mommy friends, and we obviously have to take snacks!  So, I found myself wondering what I would take to our last outing.  Cookies?  Cupcakes?  Another sweet treat?  Why yes!  Yes, I am the person who religiously brings sweets.  So sue me.  It just so happened that I had a chocolate cake in my freezer because of an expected, and frustrating, happening as I was making Grandpa's golf cake.  Perfect!

And since I had some berries from the Farmers' Market... why not make a delicious berry buttercream?

What you need:

1 Devil's Food Cake (see recipe)

Berry Buttercream:

6 cups confectioners' sugar (icing sugar)
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup of berries (if using frozen berries, be sure to pour off any excess juice/water so as not to make your buttercream too runny)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

To give it a quick go... whip up your buttercream

In the bowl of your fabulous mixer (again) fitted with the flat beater, cream the butter with the vanilla and salt.  Slowly combine the confectioners' sugar and the milk.  I find repeating the cycle of adding one cup icing sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk achieves the best results.  Plus, you're less likely to be covered in icing sugar and have one hell of a mess to clean up later.  Beat on low speed until combined.  Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes, then reduce to low and slowly add the berries until combined.  Increase speed again to medium and beat for 1 minute more.  I find the measurements of this recipe spot on, but if the frosting is dry, add more milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it is creamy but still holds peaks.  Makes about 4 1/2 cups of buttercream: I find just enough to decorate one cake or 18 - 24 cupcakes. You can also find cake construction and decorating tips with the recipe noted above.

I did it up with a whack of buttercream roses but did not add fresh berries in the middle.  For no reason in particular other than I felt the berry buttercream drove the point home enough that the berries would be superfluous.

As you can see, it wasn't a pretty cake.
Give it a quick crumb coat and chill.

Not bad eh?  And guess what?  It was so, so, so good.  Just what a bunch of mommas needed :)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Homemade Granola

I'm a big fan of granola but not so much all of the sugar.  I've tried my hand at making my own on numerous occasions and have found all of the recipes to be quite disappointing: chocked full of sugar and lacking a whole lot of delicious.

Then, I stumbled upon these 5 ingredient wonders.  They're simple to make, delicious, and healthy.  Well, when I say healthy, what I really mean is there is no 'sugar' and you can add whatever your healthy heart delights.

What you need:

4 cups of oats
1/2 almonds (you could, of course, use peanuts or any other nut for that matter)
3/4 cup of natural peanut butter
1/2 cup honey (or cane syrup, or agave syrup, or maple syrup... you get the picture)

Then your add-ins... throw in whatever strikes your fancy.  I used:

2 handfuls (yes, I mean handfuls... I didn't use a measuring cup) of chocolate chips
2 handfuls of pecans
2 handfuls of dried cranberries
1/4 unsweetened coconut
and a couple good swigs of olive oil

Other things you could use:

seeds: pumpkin, sunflower, chia... whatever floats your boat
wheat germ
dried fruit
etcetera.... etcetera.... etcetera :)

What you need to do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Start by mashing up the first four ingredients.  Once it's all incorporated, mix in your add-ins.  *Note/Disclaimer: I used my stand mixer for this recipe... it takes very little time to have it all come together and your mixer is really bumpin' and grindin' by the time it's all together.  You are hereby forewarned.

I liked the idea of having these as granola 'bites' instead of bars.  I used my OXO cookie scoop and they turned out to be the perfect 3 bite (or more if you're a lady) 'cookie'.  And they're really quite filling.  Of course, if you prefer them in bar form, squish the dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and cut while they're still warm from the oven.  Be sure to smoosh your bites down a bit, there is next to no spread factor in these 'cookies'.

Bake for 15-18 minutes... these will not really 'brown up' but the chocolate will get all melty and you'll know when they should come out.

Store in an air tight container and enjoy!  This makes a pretty generous batch so you could freeze half of the batch and definitely have enough to enjoy for awhile.  Of course, I suggest you share some but... that's just me :)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Grandpa's Golf Cake

I love baking birthday cakes. Last month, I made the chocolate rose cake for Tim's aunt and it was a total hit. This past weekend, I had the pleasure of baking Grandpa's 88th birthday cake. I pondered what kind cake I'd make and with what design for quite some time. Then, a stroke of Pinterest genius hit me... golf cake. Gramps loves golf. He's 88 and he stills walks the entire 18 holes. No golf cart for that ol' trooper.

It was a very simple 9x12 cake covered in grass-tip buttercream and a real golf ball plunked into a hole made by a cup.  I figured "yeah sure, that's cool. But.... I can do better".  Oh boy!  I haven't been that excited to create a cake in a long time ;)

I started with my devils food chocolate cake, thinking I'd make a double-layer round.

But something went horribly wrong and it turned into an ever-oozing lava cake in my oven and then one of the layers split apart in the cooling stage. WTF?!

So in the time crunch I was in, I reverted to the quick and easy recipe  I used for the margarita cupcakes (sans lime, of course). I made a 9x12 vanilla cake with the intentions of making the decoration the high point. And boy was it.

I started with a crumb coat and then....
I used purely buttercream for the decorations. I loathe fondant. I don't know why anyone would choose to eat it... So why bother using it? I'm of the belief that taste always trumps the look. I started with a crumb coat... And then I had at 'er!

I made a 'fairway, green, pond, and sand trap.
I used a grass tip to make the surrounding greenery, pulled up the buttercream in the pond to replicate waves, used graham crumbs for the sand trap and a skewer for the flag stick.  And I added some white flowers for good measure.  Yes, I'm well aware that golf courses aren't typically strewn with pretty white flowers, but this is a cake and, heck, I wanted them.  So there.

What sand trap doesn't have a few balls in it?
I'm particularly proud of my pond.  It's dumb, I know

In the end, the cake was yummy.  Not quite as amazing as the moist delicious devils food, but definitely good. The decorations were the real hit.  Gramps loved his cake so much that he took photos of it for show & tell with his golfing buddies.  That'swhatI'mtalkinabout!!!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Super Easy Flower Art

I wasn't entirely convinced that Pinterest was going to be all that fabulous.  I wasn't ready to jump on the bandwagon.  Then, like a reasonable person (which I totally am), I gave it a fair chance.  And I'm hooked.  It's a great place to 'pin' all of those things that catch my eye, that keep my creative juices flowing, and the things I aspire to make, create, bake.... it's slightly addictive.

I stumbled upon a fun and easy art project that I wanted to do for Grace's nursery.  It seemed simple and cute.... so I gave it a go.  And I think if you have an afternoon, a little paint, and some paper you like that you, too, can make this.  Yup.  I am thoroughly impressed with the result and it cost less than $10!

What you need: 

a canvas
acrylic paint
hot glue gun

What you need to do:

Start your project by painting the canvas in any acrylic color that strikes your fancy.  I should a sky blue color for Gracie's nursery.  Then, I chose three different patterned pieces of paper and a number of coordinating solids in flat and shiny textures.  I considered using fabric but paper was cheaper and I was enamoured with a pattern so paper it was.  I cut up the paper in approximate rectangles (your size should be reflective on the size of canvas you have and how many you want to add); then trimmed them into 'leaf' shapes.  And I punched a circle out of yellow paper for the centre of the flower.

Now, it's puzzle time.  I started by placing the centre of the flower off-centre.  Then, place the paper petals of various sizes and patterns around the centre as you please.  I spent about an hour moving the petals around to get just the right shape and color variation.  You, of course, can do this in mere minutes if you aren't picky.  Or if you're particularly savvy :)  A trick that worked great for me to see the positioning and patterns was to take pictures with my iPhone of the entire canvas.  It somehow helps you gain a perspective of how it looks as a whole.  Give it a go.

The last step is to carefully lift each petal and add small dollops, or lines as I preferred, of hot glue to the backside and place them onto the canvas in its preset position.

The original tutorial suggests finishing the entire piece with Mod Podge.  I didn't not do this.  I prefer the look of something that isn't perfectly polished.

Then I hung it above Gracie's crib so she has something beautiful to gaze at.... because don't we all deserve a little beauty in our lives?

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Cheesecake Truffle 'Pops'

Ok so I love cheesecake.  And I love truffles.  There's just something about picking through a pretty little box of chocolates that just feels so... fabulous.  But I digress... cheesecake, right.  So as I promised, I am here to share the super easy way to impress your friends with these delicious, 'one-bite' cheesecake truffle 'pops'.  These aren't on sticks; I call them 'pops' because, well, the idea is that you just pop them into your mouth and you're good to go.  The truffle pops I made weren't exactly a true one-bite wonder... not unless you're ambitious and commit to having a very big bite (which I love by the way!).

Anyhow... I should start with clarifying that these are not cake pops.  In fact, I kind of loathe cake pops.  I just don't see the appeal of baking a cake, mashing it up with a whack of buttercream, squishing it into little balls, and then coating it in waxy chocolate.  Yes, this is my view on cake pops.  You can disagree.  But try the cheesecake truffle pop version and you'll come over to my side.

What you need:

500g (or 2 packages) of cream cheese, softened
1 can condensed mild
1/2 cup plain yogurt or sour cream (I used greek yogurt)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup all purpose flour
chocolate for coating (I used organic milk chocolate, but you could use candy melts too I suppose)

What you need to do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a 9"x13" baking pan with parchment paper, overlapping the two longer sides for easy removal from the pan.

Beat cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk until smooth and creamy.  Beat in yogurt.  Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add vanilla and flour.  Pour into prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or until top is golden and firm to the touch.  Cool to room temperature.

Turn baked cheesecake back into mixer and break up (takes maybe 10 seconds).  Roll cheesecake into balls (size is entirely up to you, I used a small cookie scoop and these ended up being a little on the large side).  Place on a piece of parchment paper.

Now here's where you can get creative.  Coat the cheesecake 'balls' in your choice of chocolate or candy melts.  I did not temper the chocolate, but I wish I had; out of the fridge, these truffles were awesome... but after they'd been on display at the baby shower for a few hours, the chocolate started to warm up and was softer than I had intended.  So, if you want your truffle pops to maintain that wicked crack as you bite into them, temper your chocolate.  If you don't care so much, melt your chocolate over a pot of simmering water and dip away.  Place them on the parchment to cool completely.  And enjoy!

These truffle pops freeze very well.  You can freeze them without any coating and then roll them in your desired coating before serving.

They're really that easy.  They are definitely a dessert that will likely end up being in our family rotation... you know, that dessert that's hidden in the freezer and can be whipped out to impress family and friends lickety-split?  Yup, that one.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Truffles Recipe
I'm not sure what happened to my photos, but this one certainly gives you a good idea of what they should look like; photo courtesy of Eagle Brand

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Baby Shower Baking

One of my closest friends is having a baby and I could not be more excited.  Not only am I thrilled to share the joys and challenges of motherhood with her, I was also stoked to bake delicious treats for her baby shower.  The theme was Cinco de Mayo because it was held on May 5th... but also, what makes a baby shower more festive than slushy momgaritas?  So I figured, what better treat than margarita cupcakes?!  I did some searching and found a recipe that seemed simple... which I really needed since I was making not only margarita cupcakes, but also mexican chocolate cupcakes and cheesecake truffle pops.  Yup, I go all out.  For her, I'd do anything.

So let's start with the margarita cupcakes, I used a recipe from my tried and true iambaker site.  I used vanilla cake instead of lemon and I omitted the tequila, though I'm sure this would have made them really taste 'margarita'esque... I figured I didn't want to push any buttons at a baby shower.

You need:

1 box lemon cake (I used vanilla and added 1/4 lemon juice and the zest of one lemon)
4 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1/2 water
(She suggests using these wet ingredients and not the directions on the box, which I did and they were great!)

What you need to do:

Mix all of the ingredients together in a mixer.  Fill cupcakes liners 3/4 way full and bake for about 18 minutes at 350 degrees.

I wanted these cupcakes to stay fresh and delicious, and because I made these the day before the shower, I made a quick key lime simple syrup to brush on the tops of each cupcake.  I then frosted them with a lime buttercream.  Yum!

To make the lime buttercream, make your basic buttercream (1 cup butter, 5-6 cups icing sugar, 3-6 tbsp milk) but cut back on the milk and add lime juice and lime zest.  Also, a tablespoon of tequila would go a long way to making these true margarita cupcakes.

Photo courtesy of iambaker
I also made chocolate cupcakes with a blackberry compote and lilac buttercream.  And cheesecake truffle 'pops'.  I didn't quite expect the cheesecake pops to be such a hit, but they ended up being deeeelicious!  The best part was: they are dead simple to make.  But those are for the next post ;)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Our living room wall is covered in this fabulous black textured wallpaper and it's just dying for a beautiful piece of art.  Tim and I had been wanting to get something great but just haven't been able to find the right  canvas.  The search is still on, but in the meantime, I figured I'd try my hand at a super easy DIY craft.

I love for crafty DIY inspiration.  They have makeovers, arts and crafts, even "Foodie Fridays" and they're designs couldn't be easier.  I saw a neat art project that I thought would be great for our wall; it didn't quite turn out they way I wanted but it's perfect in our office.  Curbly led me to another easy DIY art project with how-to's and recommendations here and here.  They made it look so darn easy, that I bought a couple canvas and had at 'er.  This one, I was impressed with.  This one went up on the wall.

I taped off the two canvas in a pattern that flowed together but would be hung apart.
I made the mistake of using tape that was intended for florists' use and resembled duct tape.  Unfortunately it wasn't the best decision I made, but I guess I know better for next time.  As you can see, some of the lines weren't entirely crisp when I pulled with tape off but I just touched them up with white acrylic.

A secret to this project was, I didn't use acrylic paint for the entire canvas.  Instead, I used three different colors that would tie things together with the purple lamps and foot stools in our living room.  Our other walls are grey, so I used some of that remaining paint.  Then, because I love Lowe's, I picked up a few free samples of Valspar paint in varying tones of purple.

The finished product isn't perfect, but considering it didn't cost much and I had fun doing it... I'm pretty happy with the result.  Plus, now I know what to do for the next time!

I think it would be fun to mimic the pattern of the couch and tape off softer lines next time.  It's as easy as painting over the canvas and giving it another go.  But first, a canvas for Gracie's room!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Impromptu Upcycling

So I've always known that I have a bit of an addictive personality, but I never thought I'd be quite so impulsive.  Or obsessive compulsive if you ask my husband.  Tomato Tomawto.  When Tim and I returned from living overseas, we didn't exactly have a tonne of furniture as we hadn't kept anything when we left Canada.  We were starting from scratch and welcomed any help we could get in setting up our home.  Luckily, we inherited a couch and chair from his parents that exhibits, to this day, incredible construction and comfort.  They are, however, covered in an absolutely hideous pattern.  Stylish for the time they were purchased many moons ago, I am sure, but definitely in need of some updating.  In our efforts to make the best of a good inheritance, we bought a couch cover and threw a large and lusciously soft blanket over the chair.  I think you can see where this is going....

I woke up one morning... or rather it was likely more I couldn't get back to sleep after Gracie's early morning feed, but that's just a minor and unimportant detail.  I woke up one morning and was overwhelmed with, let's call it a 'desire', to try my hand at recovering the chair.  Something had to be done.  I hated the shuffling around of the blanket and cover, the bunching and pulling, the crumb-catching and general blech.  It had to go.

But I didn't exactly want to fork out the dough for a new couch.  Not when we have a baby that will barf, slobber, and grope at it.  And then a toddler that will sticky-finger-"mommy-look-I'm-jumping-on-the-couch!".  And then a teenager that would wipe god knows what on it.  No.  No, I'd rather save my money and buy a truly fabulous couch later.  For now, I'm jumping on the upcycling bandwagon (which I'm a true believer in by the way), take what I have and repurpose, recover, renew it to make it wonderful again.

So I moseyed, yes moseyed, on over to the fabric store, picked out an upholstery fabric that I figured I wouldn't hate in mere months and collected some supplies.  And then I got to work.  Of course I googled the crap out of 'chair reupholstery' and every variation I could think of... you'd bet there would be all sorts of tutorials and recommendations, but no.  There is, in my opinion, a shameful lack of information available.  And, the ones that are out there involve the cumbersome and daunting task of cutting off the existing fabric, laying it out to make a pattern, and then sewing a new cover for your furniture.  Well... since I couldn't (at that time) sew a stitch if my life depended on it and I wasn't about to let this get in my way, I took a stab at it my way.

Fabric was purchased on discount at Fabricland: $8.99/m.  Total cost, including staple gun, $150.
I knew that with a little artful folding, some liquid stitch, and a trusty staple gun... I could get the job done.  Yes, you read it right, there isn't a single stitch in that recovered chair.  With a 4 month old daughter, it took me a few days to get it done... but I was very impressed once I was finished.  Even Tim loved it, so much so that he asked me to do the couch too.  Sure honey!  Whatever you want :)

This fabulous fabric is from IKEA, $5.99/m.  Total cost: $104.
Gracie, at 6 months, was napping morning and afternoon so I was able to get this project done in a little more than a week.  The cushions are the trickiest part, one a day.  But the bottom, back, and sides were completed in two days.  Not too shabby!

I also decided to recover our stools and paint a canvas for the wall... but that's for the next blog.

So if you have an old couch, or coffee table, or dresser, or heck anything that's old... don't throw it away.  Find a little inspiration and a pinch of 'what-the-hell' and make it new again.  Upcycling is very chic these days :)