The problem with partial renovation

The main problem with partially redoing a space is that you have to work with what’s there. Fixtures, cabinets, and lighting all often stay put in low-budget renovations.

Which leads us to today’s problem: HOW have I never noticed that my sink and light fixture are NOT CENTERED ON ONE ANOTHER?!? I haven’t noticed that detail even ONCE in 7 years??

So I took a deep breath, decided to center the mirror on the largest and most noticeable thing–the vanity–and try to ignore the offset nature of the lighting for as long as possible.

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We will just pretend that THIS isn’t there.

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The picture isn’t off center or at an angle…the lights are actually only over the right third of the mirror. Really.

In celebration of this amazingness, I’m linking to Clan Donaldson’s Theme Thursday…appropriately enough labeled “Askew” this week. Yeah…askew.

On a positive note, I successfully anchored and hung that HUGE mirror by myself (and by that I mean my stay-at-home-mom self which perpetually includes my two sidekicks…) with no physical or structural damage! I’ll post the rest of this room’s renovation soon. It was a pretty amazing change…

🙂

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Creamy Chicken and Pasta

I have been trying to creep toward cooking with more “whole” or “real” foods. It’s a difficult journey, as any of you who’ve tried it know all too well.

I baked a beautiful batch of whole wheat muffins, and no one would eat them. NO ONE.

I tried to get rid of the margarine, and my sweet husband fussed because he missed it.

And don’t even get me started on the snack cake and sweet tea situations.

So I’ve decided that I’m going to do my best, take small steps, and make sure that whatever I serve up is delicious. If they love what they are eating, they won’t care what’s in it!

That leads me (finally) to my newest recipe. I had been reading on blogs like Heavenly Homemakers about using heavy cream to make…wait for it…CREAM sauces! I know it’s a novel concept, but just stay with me. 😉

I was getting ready to cook supper, and all I could think of was caramelized onions. It was a chicken night, so I knew I’d need to work that in too. Hmmm…and pasta. We’d had rice and potatoes most recently, so pasta it was. Unfortunately, that was all I had in the way of inspiration. I didn’t want a tomato sauce, and I hadn’t done any meal planning.

I just started cooking the onions to see where it would lead.

This is what it turned into…

 

Creamy Chicken and Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 8oz pasta (I used penne)–cook and drain
  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced
  • 1lb chicken tenders, defrosted if frozen
  • 1 small bell pepper (picked from my garden!!), chopped
  • 1/4-1/2t dried basil and rosemary
  • salt to taste
  • 3/4-1c heavy cream
  • butter for cooking onion and chicken–maybe 1-2T?

Cook the onion in 1T butter on medium to medium-high heat until beginning to soften and brown. Add chicken (and a little more butter if needed for moisture) and cook until lightly brown on both sides. Toss in bell pepper pieces, herbs and salt, cover and let cook for about 5-10 minutes tossing and/or stirring as needed until chicken is cooked through. Add about 1/2c water about half way through to help keep from sticking and to begin creating a sauce.

Break up chicken into smaller pieces, lower heat, pour in cream and stir. Add cooked pasta and toss to cover with sauce.

Enjoy!

(You can also top it with Parmesan cheese, but we didn’t make it that long. The flavors are so deep and rich that we all gobbled it down before we had the chance to add anything else to it!)

 

 

Simple Saturday

I’m linking up with Iris via Dwija for {Simple Saturday}

Ok…since it’s been a while since I’ve posted, and since I’m so exhausted by this tornado of a child that I call “Wyatt,” all you get is a picture.

This one is worth a thousand words at least.

And very few of them can be said in the presence of said child.

Tiny Terror paints on wall

I call it, “Toddler in Acrylic on Drywall.”

Guess what’s next on the home-renovation list?

NOT this room. Not till he gets past his Picasso phase.