Mar 15, 2023 | Corner, DIY Crafts, DIY Holiday Crafts, DIY Projects, Easter
Easter is the ideal time to break out your DIY supplies and make a spring craft. Short on Easter baskets this year? Not a problem. Here’s how to make the perfect DIY paper basket that will fit a chocolate bunny, jelly beans, and maybe even a decorated egg or two. Note: Following this tutorial will make a 4”x4”x4” paper basket, if you want a larger or smaller basket, adjust the measurements to reflect the size you want.
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR SUPPLIES:
- Cut 1” wide strips of paper.
- Cut 4 18” pieces of one color and 1 for the handle.
- Set aside the 1 for the handle.
- Cut 4 14” long pieces of your first color.
- Cut 4 14” long pieces of your second color. (If you don’t have paper that is long enough you can tape two pieces together.)
- Arrange the 14” pieces 4 across, being sure to alternat colors.
- Weave 4 more 14” pieces in the other direction of the 4 you already have placed down, alternating colors again. Adjust the inner square (where the paper is overlapping) to make a 4” x 4” square.
- Glue down each corner that is overlapping to secure.
- Fold each piece inwards towards the center to start building the side walls.
- With the 18” pieces, measure and mark every 4” and then fold on each mark. Glue the ends together.
- Weave each of these pieces to form the basket by following the under/over weaving pattern.
- After you weave the 4 18” pieces onto the walls, fold over any excess paper and glue to the inside (or trim and glue to the inside).
- Glue each side of the handle to the inside of the basket and you are done!
Mar 14, 2023 | Dinner, Easter, Main Course, Recipes, Seafood
Every time, this Herb Crusted Salmon comes out great. The flaky, perfectly cooked fish covered in fresh herbs and drizzled with a tangy sauce will delight you.
I made this herb-crusted salmon for my dad, and it was fantastic, if I do say so myself. Even my family members who don’t like seafood much raved about it. The fish tasted nothing like fish and was so flaky and tender. After taking a cooking class with the executive chef of Market Street Grill in SLC, I was given this recipe as well as a delicious recipe for clam chowder. We loved each and every one of the class’s recipes!
Tips and Tricks for Fishing Before we get to the recipe, I’d like to share some of my own fish-cooking tips and some of the tips I learned in our class:
- Costco has excellent salmon, which is surprising. Costco is a good option if you can’t find fresh salmon at a fish market.
- Cooking it while it is still ice cold will ruin the flavor. Before cooking, bring to nearly room temperature, just like with steak and chicken.
- Always try to purchase fish with the same thickness. Avoid the tail end of the fish because it will cook unevenly because one end of the fillet will be thick and the other will be thin.
Ingredients in Herb Crusted Salmon
- Salmon fillets
- Dijon mustard – Grey Poupon is our favorite
- Herb mixture – cilantro, basil, parsley, rosemary, green onion, oregano, any of your favorites
- Fresh garlic
- Hollandaise – optional
- Pepper – Only use fresh ground, NOT store bought. Even fresh ground pepper only stays good for 9 months. Store-bought pepper is never good.
- Salt – Always use Kosher salt when cooking, has MUCH better flavor.
- Never boil butter, melt it slowly.
- NEVER add lemon juice while cooking over heat, lemon zest is okay, but lemon JUICE is not. It will make the food taste bitter and gross.
- When using FRESH herbs, you must use 8 TIMES the amount as the dried stuff to get the same effect.
- Roasted Garlic in oil (great over fish): get 2 parts canola oil to 1 part fresh, peeled garlic cloves. Get oil hot (about 360 degrees) add garlic. When oil is teeming, remove from heat and allow to cool while in pan. It will still bubble for a long time, that is what you want. Allow to cool down to room temp. Store in a mason jar, oil, garlic, and all! Crush garlic cloves and spread over fish (or use when any recipe calls for crushed garlic).
- 1 large salmon filet 1-inch thick
- 1 bottle Grey Poupon
- 2 cups chopped herbs cilantro, basil, parsley, rosemary, green onion, any other herbs that you love… get a good mix. Remove all stems, use ONLY the leaves. Use a knife to finely chop and grind up all herbs.
- DO NOT use a food processor.
- Roasted garlic see above, crushed
- Slather salmon with Grey Poupon, use the whole bottle or about 1 cup. Top with herbs and roasted garlic. Cover so it looks like a nice, thick “herb blanket” herb crust.
- Cook in oven at 325 degrees for 20 minutes (20 minutes per inch of thickness) in a glass baking dish or baking sheet (or something oven proof). Serve with garlic oil (from roasted garlic), lemon, and hollandaise.
- Great with rice, veggies, or crackers. (I served my Dad’s over a bed of cooked spinach and garlic)
This flaky salmon is perfect for a busy weeknight because it comes together so quickly. Need something to go on the side? Try:
- Rice pilaf
- Baked potato with melted butter (yum..)
- Roasted veggies crusted with parmesan and herbs (veggies include: zucchini, asparagus, potato wedges, brussels sprouts, any of your favorites)
Mar 13, 2023 | DIY Crafts, DIY Holiday Crafts, Easter
This Easter egg art made of tin foil is bright and colorful, and it’s a great way for kids to show off their creativity by making a one-of-a-kind design for their egg.
This week, I’ve been eager to try new things. I fell in love earlier this week painting newspaper with watercolors, and now we are using tin foil, also known as aluminum foil, which is a completely new material for us. This is the perfect easy and enjoyable Easter art activity for your kids!
HOW TO MAKE TIN FOIL EASTER EGG ART
This Easter egg art project isn’t just fun for preschoolers! Kids of all ages, and even adults, will love coming up with a unique and colorful design on their egg.
Read the simple instructions below for how to set up and create your own tin foil Easter eggs.
Supplies needed for this Easter Egg Art Project:
- tin foil (aluminum foil)
- Sharpie markers
Instructions for making Tin Foil Easter Egg Art
1. Cut out an egg shape from your cardboard. I drew the shape for my pre-schooler and she cut it out herself.
2. Tear off a piece of tin foil from your roll. Lay your egg on top of it and then fold the tin foil edges over the egg all over so the front of the egg is completely covered in the foil.
3. Leaving the lid on the Sharpie marker, have your preschooler use it to draw lines and designs all over the tin foil easter egg.
4. When they are finished drawing designs, they can use all of the Sharpie markers to trace over their designs and add any more details that they’d like.
Step 3 isn’t necessary, but I like how it adds some extra texture to the egg. Plus, it’s great for preschoolers to practice hand-eye coordination and general pre-writing skills with the tracing.
The Sharpie markers look so bright and vibrant against the shiny tin foil. My daughter covered her egg with the dull side of the tin foil but I chose to use the shinier side. As you can see, both worked fantastic so either is just fine.
Mar 12, 2023 | Pet Corner
Dogs are more than just pets; they are members of our family. As such, we want them to live long, healthy, and happy lives. But keeping our furry friends healthy and content can be challenging. It requires time, effort, and a little bit of know-how. In this blog post, we’ll explore some crucial things you should do to ensure your dog is healthy and happy.
1. Provide a Balanced Diet
A balanced diet is vital to your dog’s overall health and well-being. Your furry friend’s diet should contain protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals. Providing your dog with a balanced diet not only promotes their overall health but can also improve their coat and skin health, immune system, and energy levels. Consult with your veterinarian to find the best diet plan for your dog’s needs.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Gets Enough Exercise
Dogs need exercise to maintain their physical and mental health. Regular exercise can help your dog maintain a healthy weight, reduce the risk of heart disease, and prevent behavior problems. Depending on your dog’s breed and age, they may need between 30 minutes to 2 hours of exercise per day. Engage in outdoor activities with your dog, such as walking, jogging, playing fetch, or swimming, to keep your dog active and happy.
3. Ensure Your Dog Stays Hydrated
Water is essential for your dog’s health. It helps regulate body temperature, aids digestion, and flushes out toxins. As a general rule, dogs should drink about one ounce of water per pound of body weight each day, so make sure they always have access to water and make sure to change the water as well to avoid bacteria growth. If you’re taking your dog on a walk or traveling, bring a portable water bottle and bowl to keep your furry friend hydrated.
4. Take Your Dog For Regular Dental Checkups
Like humans, dogs need regular dental checkups to maintain healthy teeth and gums. Dental problems such as gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath can cause pain, discomfort, and infection. The American Veterinary Dental Society recommends dental checkups every six months for most dogs. If you’re wondering, “does my dog need a dental checkup?” it’s essential to look for common signs of bad dental health. These include bad breath, loose or missing teeth, bleeding gums, or difficulty eating.
5. Provide Mental Stimulation
Mental stimulation is crucial for your dog’s overall health and well-being. It’s also one of the best ways to keep your puppy happy throughout their life. Engage your furry friend in activities that challenge their mind, such as puzzle toys, obedience training, or interactive games. Mental stimulation can help reduce stress and anxiety, prevent behavior problems, and improve cognitive function.
Another great way to provide mental stimulation for your dog is by taking them on regular walks and exposing them to new environments and smells. Dogs rely heavily on their sense of smell to understand and navigate the world around them, so allowing them to explore different scents can be incredibly enriching.
6. Visit Your Veterinarian Regularly
Regular visits to the veterinarian can help prevent and detect health problems early on. Consult with your veterinarian about the appropriate vaccination schedule, preventive measures, and screening tests for your furry friend. Veterinarians can also offer advice on nutrition, exercise, and behavior training.
In conclusion, keeping your furry friend healthy and happy requires time, effort, and knowledge. A balanced diet, regular exercise, clean water, dental checkups, mental stimulation, and regular veterinary care can help your dog live a long and healthy life. Remember, your dog depends on you for their well-being, and with a little effort, you can help them thrive.
Did you find these tips helpful? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below!
Mar 10, 2023 | DIY Crafts, DIY Holiday Crafts, Easter
It was so simple to make these Easter eggs with tie dye! I have to admit that the idea of tie dyeing something made me a little nervous. It seems like it should scare people. or difficult. or, at a minimum, messy. But what do you know? None of those things were the case! If you don’t wear rubber gloves and end up with food coloring all over your hands, don’t say I didn’t warn you. As long as you do.
There aren’t many Easter posts on my blog. How absurd is that? I had to return to work around this time last year after taking maternity leave. The year prior to that I had an infant in addition to two children under 5. Then, three years later, I found out that I was expecting our third child, a boy. Ah, March 2013, when we only had two children and I still had time every night after the kids went to bed to work on the blog. Those were good times…) Now that I think about the few posts I wrote a month after I found out I was pregnant, I feel sick. like the real ones, where I swear I’ll vomit.
Have you ever encountered that issue? During that brief period, I used a different logo for the blog, and just looking at that logo makes me sick to my stomach. alongside one of Tangled’s songs, which my daughter listened to over and over again for months. Either of you will be thinking, “Yes! You have no idea what you’re talking about! Or you’ll join the opposing team and be told, “Um, Debbie, you’re crazy.” Can you simply move on? Okay, good.
Although I’ve been a blogger for four and a half years, this is my first Easter egg post. As a craft blogger, I’m shaking my head in disbelief that I could have allowed that to happen. You can just ignore that. Instead, take a look at these amazing tie dye Easter eggs! When I made them, I had no idea what to expect, but they are bright, beautiful, and so much fun!
Tie Dye Easter Eggs
The full printable instructions are at the end of this post, but here’s what you’ll need:
- Hard Boiled Eggs
- Food Colouring
- Paper Towel
- Water Spray Bottle
- Tiny Elastics or Twist Ties
- Table Fan
Go ahead and hard boil your eggs. Did you know that you can make hard boil eggs by baking them in the oven!? I’ve been doing it for about 3 years now and I’ve never had a single egg crack!
Once the eggs have cooled off, rip apart the paper towels into small sections and place your egg in the middle.
Bunch up the paper towel around the egg so it’s completely covered. Twist the end as tightly as you can and secure it with a tiny elastic or a twist tie. I get my tiny elastics in the hair and accessories section at the dollar store.
Squeeze drops of food colouring directy onto the paper towel.
You’re probably going to want to hold the egg in your hand. I would have needed a third hand to take a photo of me doing that so this was the best I could do. You get the idea though.
Try to separate the food colouring drops so that there is some white space between them. You definitely don’t have to leave the space, but it helps to keep the colours from completely mixing into one another if you leave some room.
Take your spray bottle of water and squirt a small amount of water into the middle of each of the food colouring drops. If you can still see white paper towel, the egg underneath will be white in that area, so keep spraying until the paper towel is completely coloured. But keep in mind, the more water you spray, the less bright the colour on the egg will be. It’s a balance.
Gently squeeze the egg over the sink if there’s any extra water. Even if there isn’t, squeeze it gently anyway to make sure the colours on the paper towel transfer to the egg underneath.
This is why you want to wear rubber gloves. It’s just food colouring, so if you don’t have gloves, it will definitely come off your hands in a day or two, but this is what my gloves looked like after one egg:
Set the eggs in a glass dish or on a baking sheet to dry. I was impatient so I pointed a table fan directly at my eggs and they were completely dry in about 3 hours. I definitely recommend you do the same, otherwise you’ll need to leave them overnight to dry.
This is going to sound cheesy, but it was like unwrapping a present.
What’s inside? Are you excited? Because I was getting pretty excited…
Ta-da! I love how the texture from the paper towel made an impression on the eggs!
There has to be something you can do with the beautiful tie dyed paper towels you’re left with at the end so you don’t just throw them away?? What if you cut out a square of each paper towel, pinch it together in the middle with a pipe cleaner or clothes pin and turn it into a super simple tie dyed butterfly when you’re done? I wish I had thought of that yesterday!
The colours were bright and beautiful, and even though I used the same technique on all of them, each egg looked completely different.
In case you’re wondering, yes, the food colouring does leach through the egg shell a little bit. But only a few dots here and there. It’s food colouring, so the eggs are still completely safe to eat.
- Hard Boiled Eggs
- Food colouring
- Paper Towel
- Water Spray Bottle
- Tiny Elastics or Twist Ties
- Table Fan
- Tear apart the paper towels into small rectangles. Place a cool, dry egg in the middle of the paper towel.
- Wrap the paper towel up and around the egg so it’s completely covered. Twist the top of the paper towel so it’s tight against the egg and secure it with a tiny hair elastic or a twist tie.
- Wearing rubber gloves, gently squeeze drops of food colouring directly onto the paper towel wrapped egg (3 or 4 drops at a time), leaving some white space between each colour. Repeat until there are large food colouring dots around the whole egg.
- Using a spray bottle, gently spray a small amount of water into the center of each food colouring dot. Keep spraying until the colours bleed and there is no more white space. The less water you spray, the brighter the colours on the egg will be.
- Gently squeeze the wet paper towel wrapped egg over the sink to drain any excess water. Even if there’s no extra water, gently squeeze the egg to make sure the colour on the paper towel transfers to the egg.
- Place the wet, paper towel wrapped eggs in a baking dish. Point a table fan at the eggs and allow them to dry for 3 to 4 hours. (Without a table fan, you’ll have to wait overnight for them to dry).
- When the paper towels are completely dry, remove the elastics and unwrap each egg.
It’s best if you can make these the day you plan to serve them. If they MUST be refrigerated, place the eggs in an egg carton. Make sure you remove them from the fridge (and open the egg carton lid) at least 3 hours before you plan to serve them to give time for the condensation to dry.
Mar 9, 2023 | Beverages, Easter, Recipes
A deliciously fruity raspberry sangria that can be made quickly for a party or enjoyed on the porch in the summertime! Try my blood orange or mango-ginger sangria the next time.
I was able to jump right into summer recipe development with just one day above 70 degrees. I started thinking of all the things I wanted to grill, all the salads I wanted to toss together, and all the things I wanted to no-bake (because… it was hot) as soon as I put on my shorts to go for a walk.
But I wanted to start coming up with new cocktail recipes more than anything else. Even though I think I can make a decent pitcher of sangria at home, I wouldn’t bet money on myself at a bar or event.
I would resemble Ted and Barney in the episode of How I Met Your Mother in which they attempt bartending and end up with broken liquor bottles and alcohol dripping from every surface.
People don’t want to see good alcohol go to waste like that, and I’m sure I’d cost a business more than I would make from it.
Raspberries have been on my mind a lot lately, and I think it’s because they are so bright and cheerful, which makes me think of warm weather.
In the spring and summer, I try to avoid dull colors like gray shirts and a black hoodie. The same goes for my food and beverages.
It stands to reason that if what I’m consuming is bright and shiny, I will be, too, right? Right. Welcome to Leslie’s Logic Without Flaws.
I wanted to try a new recipe that wasn’t overly complicated.
Because not everyone enjoys sangria in the same way, I also wanted it to be simple to personalize based on your preferences. It can be as fruity as it wants to be, while others prefer it to be more dry. I like it both ways, so I can easily adjust this as needed.
Therefore, I present my Raspberry Rosé Sangria to you!
WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE RASPBERRY ROSÉ SANGRIA
For the base of the recipe, you may choose to use:
- A dry rosé or a fruitier rosé. If you prefer a less sweet sangria, then you may lean toward a drier rosé and omit the raspberry simple syrup.
- Club soda or lemon lime soda. You can opt to use the club soda just for the additional carbonation, or use lemon lime soda to add a bit of sweetness and additional flavor.
- Simple syrup, or omit it altogether. This sangria is plenty delicious without it, but if you opted to use a dry rosé and club soda, maybe you’d enjoy the extra flavor and sweetness the syrup would provide.
Until you give it a shot, you won’t know what you like! It’s a good idea to make several batches for a party and label them according to how dry, sweet, and sweet they are. Then you and your guests can taste them all and decide which one is best! It could be a seriously entertaining party game that also involves drinking.
I asked the boyfriend to be my model and taste-test with me; thankfully, he agreed wholeheartedly to both, and he finished his sangria long before I did.
It should go without saying that he was a fan.
It’s a good idea to wear something bright while you drink your sangria.
Although highly recommended, serving yours in adorable mason jars with striped straws is completely optional.
Go ahead and make a pitcher of this cheery sangria, then kick back and unwind.
Raspberry Simple Syrup (optional):
- 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
- 2 ounces water
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 cups fresh raspberries
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced
- 1 750 ml bottle rosé
- 8 ounces lemon-lime soda or club soda
Raspberry Simple Syrup (optional):
- In a small saucepan, combine raspberries, water and sugar over medium heat to bring it to a boil.
1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries |2 ounces water |2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- Reduce heat and simmer until the sugar has dissolved and it has thickened to a thin syrup.
- Turn off heat and let cool for at least 5 minutes.
- Over a small bowl, push syrup through a mesh sieve to catch all the raspberries seeds, leaving you with only the smooth liquid.
- In a pitcher, combine simple syrup (optional), raspberries, lemon slices and rosé. Place in fridge to chill for at least 1 hour.
2 cups fresh raspberries |1 lemon |1 750 ml bottle rosé
- Add club soda or lemon lime soda to pitcher just before serving and gently stir to combine.
8 ounces lemon-lime soda or club soda
- Fill each serving glass with ice cubes and fill with sangria. Enjoy!