Wednesday, March 14, 2012

granola and crackers

a couple of weeks ago, i decided it was fine time to organize my pantry.  i have an amazing pantry, but it was always so hard to find what i needed. i realized that i was experiencing food clutter! i didn't take before pictures, but if you remember what my electronic storage before picture looked like...imagine that in the form of baking supplies, dry goods, canned goods, and a host of miscellaneous items~big problem. i devoured blogs on the subject and wanted to buy pretty clear glass storage containers, label makers, shelf liners, and new mason jars, but my budget won't allow for it.  so i spent an hour scrubbing off labels from store bought glass jars that i had on hand, masking tape will do the trick for labels, and in the spring i'll paint the shelves.  i still have to find containers for my flours, sugars, and pastas and work out where to store the camping coolers, wine making supplies, and reusable grocery bags but here's what it looks like now.   
PANTRY AFTER (can you believe this is the improvement:) 

after organizing the pantry i was inspired to use up some of my bulk dry goods. also, i hit my grocery store budget befoer i got to put multi-grain cheerios in the cart.
my cousin-in-law (she's my husband's first cousin's wife) lindsay over at mountain mama made some of soulemama's granola (from 'cooking with whole foods' by cynthia layer) the last time we visited, and i'd been meaning to try the recipe ever since.

like i always say...get out everything you need first.  this picture is of the dry ingredients. the porridge mix already has flax seed added. the recipe calls for almonds and sesame seeds, but i used pistachios and flax because i had them on hand.
now for the wet ingredients. the recipe also calls for almond extract, but dan has a nut allergy so i left it out. (did you know pistachios are the single-seeded stone fruit of the pistachio tree?)  i'm not really following the recipe am i? i used oil, maple syrup and apple juice too...all from the original recipe.
 add the wet to the dry...
 spread out on baking sheet
 and voila! homemade granola
 the other thing i didn't have room in my grocery budget for was crackers. my boys love ritz crackers. lately i've been worried about the amount of packaging that leaves my home. i'm pretty conscious about it, but still, i bring two grocery bags a week to the recycling bin. part of making my own granola and crackers, is reducing my household waste. who really knows what gets recycled or what goes to the landfill anyways? so back to the ritz crackers. i found stef over at cupcake project
who did all the trial and error for me, and so i tried her recipe i only made one change. her recipe called for 2/3 c. water, but i only used 1/3.  the beauty of this recipe is that the whole thing is made in your food processor! my little helper winston loves kitchen appliances!

 i didn't have fancy scalloped cracker size cookie cutters, so i used my shot glass...courtesy of my cousins colin and candice's wedding. best wedding favour ever!

not the prettiest crackers, but they sure taste good!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

i heart electronic cable storage

i've missed you blog! i think about you everyday...but lately i'm in love with bloggers, and so with determination i write!
today i organized my electrical cable storage. i know, i know...who cares! right? well, i've been working really hard around my home to 'get organized & stay that way' seriously, it's tons of work!  but it is worth every "i wish i could just si'down and chill out!" moment. honest.
i brought so many boxes of belongings to the sally ann in the past two weeks. it feels so good to let it all go. and you wouldn't believe how easy it is to keep the clutter hidden when there isn't any. my initial inspiration came from the book i blogged about in january, i have crossed out a many 'to do' list items since reading it.  but there was always more to add to the list of to-do's, and some items just got left behind. but then...amy from my h.s. 4x800 track & field relay team introduced me to jen over at i heart organizing on pinterest (if you do not know about better get on it!) and she has given me so much inspiration.  i heart jen!  i was secretly jealous of her too...until yesterday when she revealed her electronic storage! AH HA!!! she's just like you and me! she's got a to do list, she's learning, growing, and sharing tips along the way.  that made me feel better, and i don't envy her any more. since electronic cable storage was one of those 'got left behind' items on my own to do list...well see for yourself.

then my girl dawn came over and she helped me move my crafting desk into my bedroom which free'd up space in the spare room ~turned office today~ for the computer desk, which left my living room looking so spacious and clutter camera is on the fritz, so the pics are kinda shabby, and i wish i'd taken more time for all the before and after shinanigans...but i'll post what i've got, then catch ya up...when i solve my camera dilemma...
spare room BEFORE
...still got some work to do
living room BEFORE
bedroom corner BEFORE
just you wait and see what this craft corner turns into...then starts to produce! my craft dreams are about to become a reality! i hope this post inspires you to organize your electronic cable storage and more...ha! i gotta get to bed.