Friday, December 23, 2011

Gift Wrappings!

Well it's that time! All the last minute shopping, gift wrapping, and bustling about of the holidays! 
I just adore this time of year! And as a Christian it's extra special to me, because I get to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! (not that we can't any other time of year) 

I love that almost everyone greets each other, all the smells of yummy food, Christmas cookies, lights! All of it!

Well today I just have a cute way to wrap your small packages if maybe you have run out of ribbons, or you just want something a little different than ribbons!

First wrap your box, I uses the "funnies" from an old news paper, and a piece of a brown paper bag. But you can use whatever you want! A word find, a cross word, wrapping paper, plain brown craft paper, whatever you can find!

Second, the paper (or ribbon) for the weave, I used construction paper, you could use scrapbook paper ribbons, a picture, again, WHATEVER you want! cut 4 or more strips, I used 6 on both of mine, they can be alternating colors or all the same! 
You want them to be long enough to fit around your box, and as far as the width, it doesn't matter, thin strips or wide, whatever floats your boat!

Then you start to weave! It's really simple! Just lay one strip vertical, then one horizontal, and two vertical on top of the horizontal piece. For the second horizontal strip, just slide it under the middle vertical strip and on top of the outer two vertical strips. and for the third horizontal lay it the same as the fist horizontal strip!
See! Easy!

Lay your box on top of the woven strips, and pull the ends around and tape them to your package!

After all the ends have been taped into place you can put a gift tag on it and put it under the tree!

Happy giving!!!!!!!!!!

Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Indonesian Pasta

I found this recipe in a book a friend gave me for a wedding gift and it sounded good. I made it one night and Jon and I fell in love with it! We have it every other week if not every week! 
It's simple, it takes about 30 minutes to make and tastes SO yummy!!! 

If you try it I promise you will LOVE it too!

What you will need:

1/2 c. chicken broth
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
2 T. soy sauce
2 T. peanut butter
1 T. minced dried onions (I used fresh, works just as well!)
1 T. lemon juice
1/4 t. brown sugat
6 oz. uncooked angel hair pasta (I just use half a box... there is only two of us!)
18 fresh asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 sweet red pepper
2 t. olive oil
1/2 c. sliced green onions (optional)

I break my angel hair in half before cooking it. It makes it easier to eat, without all the slurping!

In a small saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat; keep warm.

Cook Pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute  asparagus and red pepper in oil for 6-8 minutes. Optional: add green onions, saute for 2-3 minutes longer.

Drain pasta; toss with vegetable mixture and reserved sauce. Serves 4.

Even though there is only two of us, I really don't change the the recipe much. I use half the box of pasta, and a little less than two whole jalapenos, but other than that no change!  We love this meal!!! I cannot tell you how delicious it really is! You just have to try it!!!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

This past week we went tree hunting! I have never been before, or at least not that I can remember... I remember having a real tree only once growing up. So this is among many of my new firsts since I married my wonderful husband on July 2. 

As an aspiring photographer I am continuously gleaning tips, from other blogs, magazine articles, and personal experience. This week I found one by my own mistakes! Oops! but there is almost always a way to fix whatever blooper you have in post processing.

This week, I found that before you actually take any pictures change the settings to capture the correct exposure. 

 What I should have done as soon as I stepped out of the truck with my camera is looked at my settings, and taken a test shot to make sure I had everything set right... but no, I didn't! And because what I was taking a shot of was happening so fast I didn't have time to change my settings and re-take the shot.
I ended up with this:

Ugg! The withe balance is off  and it's just so unaetheticly pleasing! So, I thought I would share with you all my new found wisdom; CHANGE YOUR SETTINGS BEFORE YOU TAKE THE SHOT!

BUT, there is hope! As I said, there is almost always a way to fix it in post processing!

I started with just darkening and deepening it... and got this, it's not as bad but it's not quite there:

So, when in doubt: Go B&W!:

Ahhh! Much better! That I can live with! 

Also, I thought I would introduce you to my husband's actual face now that you have seen his back! (He's really cute!)

I like him!

I also snapped a picture of my sister-in-law (SIL) J4 as she is referred to (all their names begin with J's so they have J1, J2, {J2, is my man}, J3 and J4).

She's a little doll!

Have a Happy Holiday season! and don't forget to spend some time with your loved ones during this special time of year!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

DIY: Easy art!

Hi! My name is Ash. I am a new wife, a photographer, a cook, and a housekeeper… and now a blogger!
 I plan to write weekly, I will be posting photos, creative ideas that I have had success with, and recipes that my husband and I love!
To start off, I have a project I decided to do. I saw the idea on Pintrest and decided I wanted to try it!
 Here is our project this week!:

Items needed:
·         A canvas of any size- I bought mine at walmart, 2 for about $8
·         Sharpies (or black paint)
·         White school glue
·         Water
·         A jar
·         An old book or news paper- I got mine at an old book store, the lady actually gave it to me, she said no one wanted the book so I could just take it! But you can find them at garage sales, and sometimes a resale store.

First off, I made my own decoupage  (Mod Podge)
To make decoupage, take a bottle of white school glue, and empty it into the jar. Fill the glue bottle with water, and shake to get any remaining glue out of the bottle, and then add the water with the glue. Screw the lid on your jar securely, and shake to mix the equal parts of glue and water.

Tada! You about $1.44 to make what cost more like $7 to buy it pre-made!
Second, remove the pages of your book, I used a knife because I wanted a smooth edge instead of the torn look. But if you don’t mind that look, go for it, just tear the pages out.

And, third, cover your canvas in the decoupage, and the back side of your book page, then place the page on the canvas and cover the page in decoupage, continue until your canvas has been covered. Make sure you fold the paper around the edges if you have a stretched canvas.

Once your canvas is covered, let decoupage dry.

Fourth, If you are confident in your sketching skills, go right ahead and start with a Sharpie, if not, grab a pencil and sketch on what your heart desires. Words… birds… trees… trees with birds… the possibilities are endless!

Fifth, hang and enjoy! And when people ask where you acquired your beautiful piece of art, just tell them you made it!

(The pages on my finished project picture are a little crinkly, because I wrote words on it and then decided I didn't like it... so I covered them up with more pages! and they were still wet when I took the picture! it dried flat and smooth!)