Tag Archives: Pinterest

Strawberry Basil Sangria from Pinterest

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It’s a running joke among my friends that my life is now controlled by Pinterest. From my holiday decorations to just my regular apartment decor, I draw a lot of inspiration from Pinterest.

I don’t see anything wrong with that since that’s the whole purpose of the site. It can get a little embarrassing however when I’m continually telling people that practically everything in my life – from my outfits to my food – comes from Pinterest. Where’s the originality?

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Well, this sangria is no different although I wish I could tell you that I was the person to come up with it.

About a month ago, I saw a pin for strawberry basil sangria and could barely wait to bring another pin to life. With just a few simple ingredients – strawberries, basil, apples, sugar, white wine, white grape juice, and club soda – I had a light and delicious drink that was perfect for the upcoming summer season. I differed from the original recipe slightly by chopping my basil instead of scoring it and using Pinot Grigio instead of the recommended Chardonnay. My only criticism was that I could taste too much of the grape juice for my personal preference, so next time I would probably cut back on the juice, and add it to my taste preference.

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A very happy drink, indeed.

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Just wait until tomorrow when I show you what I paired the drink with for dinner!

It’s Saturday

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  1. I really miss North Carolina. Especially the hiking part.
  2. Nothing has tempted me to break my shopping ban like this necklace that I found in North Carolina. It was hard. And I pouted for a good hour over it.
  3. I finally gave the Hunger Games a chance. And then I read all three books in the course of two and a half days. I feel like I fit in with society now.
  4. There’s a French bakery in Connecticut that sells French macaroons. I like to stop in there on the weekends to buy a few as a little treat for myself.
  5. Spring is in full force which necessitates raspberry lemonade and dresses.
  6. Although the fifteen hour drive from North Carolina to Connecticut was miserable, nothing says quality time like 15 hours in the car together.

For those reading this through an RSS Feed service or email, you might not have noticed that More Fruit Please got a little bit of a makeover this past week. For the past few months, I really haven’t been loving the look of my header and have had changing it on my to-do list for quite a while. I finally bucked up this week, and with the help of this tutorial, came up with something much more fresh and happy looking.

Out with the old…

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And in with the new!

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Do you remember the Pinterest party that I hosted last Fall? The CBS This Morning show did a great story on the boom of Pinterest among women and one of my pictures from the party made a brief appearance! When I say brief, I really do mean like a brief millisecond, but it’s still neat to appear on national television! You can see the group shot from my party around the 1:15 mark representing the state of Connecticut!

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It’s Saturday. And it’s beautiful outside. And I have a feeling that it’s going to be a great day!

Enjoy it!

Pinterest Party

Ha! You thought that my lack of a Pinterest mention in yesterday’s post meant I was actually over my pinning obsession, huh? Well, I have news for you, buddy. I actually took my love for Pinterest to a whole new level of unhealthy and threw a party for it!

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After doing a fair amount of pinning, I realized that I was falling into the Pinterest trap of feeling inspired and creative but not actually doing anything about it. I was starting to accumulate a fair amount of recipes for food that I knew I realistically wouldn’t get around to making for a long time if I waited for the right occasion for it.

Realizing that I had to do something about the situation, I approached my friend Jennifer, a fellow pinning enthusiast, about the idea of hosting a Pinterest Food Party. The concept would basically be a Pinterest potluck – each guest would bring an item or two that they had found off Pinterest. After hitting up a few other Pinterest ladies and getting Jennifer’s friends and coworkers, Caitlin and Lauren, on board – the Pinterest Party was born.

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As excited as I was about the Pinterest Party, I was equally excited about hosting my very own party in my new apartment for the first time. Since my sideboard table was covered in decorations, I decided to use my dining room table as the serving area and had everyone sit in the living room to eat for a more casual and relaxed ambiance. I hooked my ipod up to speakers which shuffled through Adele and Maroon 5 songs for most of the evening.

I didn’t get a close up of the dining room table, but I think you get the gist of things from the photo above. I had set out both large and small plates along with a stack of napkins. I didn’t want to just have a pile of utensils on my table for people to grab from, so I instead placed them in short glasses. I normally use the three tiered serving tray for storing my fruit, but it worked perfectly for displaying our dessert items instead. If anyone’s interested, the stand is from Pampered Chef and can be ordered here. Oh, and the flowers on the table were courtesy of Mister E from a few days prior to the party.

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Ok, but onto the actual food now. Instead of posting the recipes or links to pins, I’ve included a link to the original site where the recipe was obtained from.

We kicked things off with Caitlin’s artichoke dip served with sea salt pita chips. I’m usually not a fan of artichoke dip since the chunks of artichokes kind of freak me out, but this was so good! Caitlin said she broke the artichokes up into pretty small pieces which I definitely appreciated.

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To go along with our appetizer and dinner, we sipped on strawberry champagne made by Lauren. I’ve only had champagne a few times before in my life, and never anything flavored, so this was a fun treat. We all agreed that this tasted like a champagne smoothie which I know sounds kind of gross, but I have a feeling that you champagne lovers out there would love it.

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After everyone had gone back for seconds on the artichoke dip, it was time for our main meal which was made by myself and Jennifer. We had decided ahead of time that we wanted all of our food to be small portions so that everyone would be able to taste everything before getting too full. Jennifer’s chicken and cheese lasagna roll-ups and my stuffed zucchini cups fit the bill perfectly! It also worked out nicely that the two dishes complimented each other very well.

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Even though it may not seem like a lot of food, at this point we were all feeling pretty full! We gave ourselves a little bit of a break before what we were all considering to be the real main course – dessert.

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On the top tier are Jennifer’s lemon bars. Surprisingly, these were made using a cake mix which you would never be able to tell by tasting them. I loved how the bottom layer crisped up so that it tasted almost like a graham cracker crust and I especially liked the crumbly top lemon layer.

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In the middle tier are my vanilla bean latte cupcakes. While making these, I told Mister E that I think these were the most difficult thing that I have ever made but were also destined to be the most delicious that I have made. And indeed they were. It’s a vanilla bean cupcake with an espresso filling, topped with a vanilla espresso butter cream frosting. Please don’t let my description of ‘difficult to make’ scare you off. They are completely doable, there are just quite a few involved steps in the process, so have patience!

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On the bottom tier are Lauren’s red velvet whoopie pies. These were so amazing that I am already looking forward to making them myself sometime in the future. I’ve always been a fan of pumpkin whoopie pies, but I’m not sure if they hold a candle to red velvet now that I’ve tried both!

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The last dessert item on the menu that didn’t make it onto the stand was Caitlin’s chocolate chip cookie and oreo fudge brownie bars. And they were, indeed, every bit sinful as they look.

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Without a doubt, dessert was my favorite part of the party. I loved how the flavors were all so different. It actually felt like I was at a wedding cake tasting and getting to try out so many different flavors at once! Everyone was a big fan of the vanilla bean latte cupcakes and said that they were the winner of the night. Now, of course this wasn’t a competition and I don’t have a Monica Geller complex or anything, so the idea of there being a winner is just silly! Besides, I don’t know if I could choose between the cupcake and red velvet whoopie pie if I had to!

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But wait – there’s more!

Our party didn’t end with dessert, of course. To bring the party to a close, we sipped on chocolate martinis made by Caitlin. These were so scrumptious! Can you see how she even decorated the glasses with chocolate syrup before pouring the drinks? Fancy!

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I would say that our very first Pinterest Party was a huge success and I’m hoping that maybe there will be a second one sometime in the future. I initially was concerned that there were only going to be four of us total at the party, but it worked out perfectly! I had picked up some cardboard to-go boxes from Michael’s for everyone to use to pack up the leftovers which everyone really appreciated. Even more appreciated though was these girls hanging around and helping me do the dishes – so sweet!

Have any of you made any recipes off Pinterest? I’m always looking for good ones if you want to share! Are any of you feeling inspired to host your own Pinterest party now?

Fall DIY Decorations

So here’s the long-overdue, promised post about the Fall decorations that I gave you a sneak peak to last time.

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For starters, here’s a better shot in the daylight of everything grouped together so that you can get a better look at things.

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I’ll also say upfront here that the majority of my inspiration came from Pinterest, mainly here, here, and here. I liked the idea of an elegant white, black, and gold theme and especially love how the colors are somewhat untraditional for Fall. I also think that the colors are pretty versatile and I plan on using this display for both Halloween and Thanksgiving.

Ok, and now onto the actual DIY-ing info.

Glitter Pumpkins

For the two glitter pumpkins that you see, I used fake pumpkins from Jo-Ann Fabrics and gold glitter spray paint. To protect the pumpkin stems from getting glitterified as well, I simply wrapped them in duct tape.

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It took two coats to get the pumpkins completely covered, and as you may tell if you look closely enough, I wasn’t too particular about even coverage.

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Flower Pumpkin

The idea of doing a flower pumpkin came to me from my mom during her visit. She had a magazine with her that featured the idea (which  I later found on Pinterest here). For this project, I picked out a lightweight foam pumpkin that I could tell was hollow inside. I found a beading reamer kit at Jo-Ann’s (in their beading department) and bought an assortment of white flowers at the Dollar Store.

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I first cut all the stems on the flowers down to about 1 – 1 1/2”. Using the reamer, I made a hole in the pumpkin that the flower stem could easily fit into. I found that it worked best when I made the hole using the long, thin reamer and then used the short, blunt one to widen the top of the hole. I didn’t use any sort of pattern for my hole placement and instead just eyeballed things as I went along.

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Out of all the pumpkins I made, this one certainly least resembles an actual pumpkin, but I am so enamored with it, that I really don’t care if it actually looks like I giant pom-pom. I love it. I should also note that this was the most expensive pumpkin to make. I bought twelve flower bunches from the Dollar Store and in addition to the reaming tools and pumpkin – this little cutie rang in close to twenty dollars.

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Fabric Pumpkins

By far, I was most excited to try my hand at a black lace pumpkin. The rumor going around on Pinterest was that you could just cover a pumpkin using black lace pantyhose. However, unless you have an extremely small pumpkin and extra large pantyhose, that’s just not going to happen. You do in fact, have to go out and buy a black lace fabric. While picking out my lace fabric at Jo-Ann’s, I found a pretty gold mesh fabric that I decided to use as well.

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This project was very straightforward. I cut a small hole in the fabric for the stem to poke through and then attempted to gather the fabric at the base of the pumpkin as neatly as I could. I used a stapler to attach the fabric and then trimmed off any excess.

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Embellished Pumpkins

The three small, embellished pumpkins that are part of the display were more of an afterthought. After seeing this pin, I just knew that what my pumpkin display was missing was a little glitz.

For this project, I used real pumpkin gourds that I picked up from my grocery store. For two of the gourds, I spread an all-purpose glue on top near the stem and spread it halfway down the sides. I then covered the gourds in small clear and pearl beads.

For the third gourd, I had run out beads and had gotten tired, so I cut a few pieces of gold ribbon that I had on hand and glued them to the stem. Nothing too fancy, but pretty in its own way.

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Lace Candle

I loved my black lace pumpkin so much, but felt that it stuck out a bit from the rest of the display as being darker than all the other items. To help balance things out a bit, I took a tall, white pillar candle and covered it in leftover lace material that I glued around the top edge.

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Table Runner

The table runner is, hands-down, the biggest copout project in my display. After setting my pumpkins up on the table, I wasn’t too pleased with how bare things were still looking.

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I decided that a nice white or gold table runner would help tie things together and help provide a more put-together look. I had plenty of gold mesh fabric leftover from my fabric pumpkin, so I started to consider the idea of trying to make my own table runner by layering the gold mesh material onto a plain white fabric. Not really wanting to shell out anymore cash though, I came up with the crazy idea to use paper towels. Yup, you read that right. My table runner is made out of paper towel.

I tore off a long strip of paper towels and did my best to line up the edges of the paper towel and gold fabric. I folded the gold fabric all the way around the paper towel and then stapled it into place and trimmed the short edges to make them straight as possible.

The cool thing is, unless I told you that my table runner was paper towel, you would never guess. Even people seeing it in person are surprised to hear what it’s made of.

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Fall Sign

The last part of my Fall decor is the holiday sign. This was another easy project that came together pretty quickly. I picked up black letter stickers and  two sheets of craft paper from Jo-Ann’s – one in a pretty gold texture and the other one a light colored pattern. From the gold textured paper, I cut out leaves freestyle. I glued them onto the patterned paper and attempted to arrange them in a way to make it look like they were falling and collecting at the bottom of the paper.

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I’m thinking that I might make a new sign for Thanksgiving, but we shall see.

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And there you have it – my Fall display! I’m really proud that my DIY attempt came out so well since I have a record of typically failing in the past. As far as costs go, I didn’t keep track of my receipts very well, but I would estimate that everything totaled in around 60 dollars. While that isn’t cheap by any means, I plan on putting everything into storage (with the exception of the three small embellished pumpkins which are the only real pumpkins in the display) and reusing everything for years to come, so hopefully I’ll get my money’s worth as time goes on. For anyone considering doing a similar DIY project, I would definitely recommend shopping around for your pumpkins (craft stores like Michaels and Jo-Ann’s as well as places like Target or Wal-Mart) and looking for the cheapest option. Since everything is being covered, it really isn’t necessary to buy the best quality pumpkins that go for over $20 each.

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What are you guys doing to decorate for the holidays? Anyone trying projects that they discovered off of Pinterest?

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What do you guys think of the DIY post? I hope you don’t mind me branching out to talk about other things besides food!

Taking Over My Life

Pinterest has officially taken over my life. I now spend more time on it than Facebook, so you know it’s good.

From the food…

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to the clothes…

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to the quotes…

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I. CANNOT. STOP. PINNING. Please send help.

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Directly related to Pinterest, is my latest obsession with crafting, or for a less geeky term – DIY projects. I have been gluing, cutting, and painting to my little heart’s content for the past two weeks. Is there such a thing as a professional crafter, er, professional DIYer? Because I think I would be good at it.

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I’m in love with my girly pumpkins. But more on that in another post though.

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Because it is the first full week of fall and because I’ve had a sore throat for the entirety of it, I have been living off soup this week. Potato and Leek, Butternut Squash, and Tomato Herb and I have all become quite good friends this week.

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Hearty soups, ftw!

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I started watching Grey’s Anatomy last weekend. I love catching glimpses of some of the Seattle landmarks, but I love catching glimpses of Dr. McDreamy more.

I would move back to Seattle in a heartbeat if he lived there for real.

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As far as Prince goes, squirrels and belly rubs seem to be taking over his life these days. But I don’t think that he really minds that.

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What’s taking over your life lately?

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries from Pinterest

A few weeks ago, Mister E sent me an email at work inviting me over for dinner at his parents’ house later that night. But this wasn’t going to be just a normal dinner at his parents’ house, you see. His older sister, brother-in-law, and their adorable one-year-old son were visiting from California, and this would be my first time meeting them as the girlfriend.

Instant panic set in as I realized that I should bring something over to the house but would have less than a half hour to prepare anything after work. I started racking my brain for ideas of something small, easy, and sure to impress. Thankfully, I had read Kristin’s post on Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries just a few days prior. They sounded delicious and I figured I could manage to make them in a short span of time.

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At home, I already had three out of the five required ingredients, so after I left work, I made a mad dash to the grocery store to pick up the rest. If anyone in Connecticut saw a crazy lady running through the aisles with graham crackers and cream cheese in her hands, I apologize on that poor girl’s behalf.

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

(recipe from SugarDerby)

  • 16 strawberries
  • 8 oz. package of reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup powered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large plain graham crackers, crushed

Directions:  After rinsing your strawberries, cut the tops off and hull out the middle using a small, sharp knife. In a bowl, combine cream cheese, powered sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth. Pour cream cheese mixture into a Ziploc bag and cut the tip off a corner to create a pastry bag. Pipe the cream cheese into the strawberries. Dip the strawberries into the crushed graham crackers to coat. Serve and enjoy! (Store in a refrigerator if not serving right away.)

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Please excuse any blurry photos. Remember, I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to get out the door throughout the entire process of making these.

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As an afterthought, I realized that I could have just bought a container of cream cheese frosting to save time as opposed to making my own. But like my mom said, at least I had the satisfaction of knowing that these were completely homemade. Since I didn’t have time to let my cream cheese soften on its own, I put it into the microwave for 15 second intervals to soften it quickly. My only regret on these strawberries is that I wish I had more time to crush my graham crackers finer. They were a bit too chunky for my taste.

I was a little bit clueless as to how I should plate my strawberries, so I ended up just coating the bottom of a large plate with additional crushed graham cracker crumbs and standing my strawberries on their tops. I also added a few fresh, whole strawberries along the side for anyone who might not be a fan of cream cheese (aka, Mister E’s nephew).

The verdict? They were insanely delicious and were a big hit with everyone! The best part though was that it only took me 20 minutes to make, meaning I had a few minutes to spare to actually run a brush through my hair and put on some lip gloss before dashing out the door.

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Ok, but onto important things. One of the most intriguing things about Kristin’s post on these strawberries was that she mentioned that she had found them on Pinterest. I had heard of Pinterest before on blogs like Young House Love, but thought that it was just for interior decorating and DIY projects. I didn’t know that they had food on it!

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A few days later, I had signed myself up on the website and all I can say is that I AM IN LOVE. The best way I can describe Pinterest is as a inspirational board where you can “pin” images from across the internet that include a link to where you found that image. It’s sort of like a visual bookmark site. My favorite thing about Pinterest though is that it’s also a social website where you can follow what other people are pinning and like or comment on them.

You can pin anything from delicious food, fashion inspiration, hair tutorials, DIY projects, quotes, and funny images. The possibilities are endless. You should definitely check it out and follow me if only to get a laugh now and then.

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Do you have a quick and easy recipe that you go to when you need to impress? Sharing is caring!