Tag: Inspiration on Monday


October Pin it and Do it | Inspiration on Monday

Posted 19 October, 2015 by Trish in Crafty / 16 Comments

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Autumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

Welcome to the October edition of Pin it and Do it! I’m guessing that today’s links will be Autumny/Pumpkiny/Yummy goodness. What do you think?  The past month has been busy busy–spending most evenings finishing up my cross-stitch (didn’t grab a picture!) or setting up the Halloween Village (hopefully pictures coming this week). I love this time of year!

 

Boo Sign from Southern Revivals (My Pin)

The original inspiration has a separate plaque for each letter, but I decided to just use one plaque with all of the letters. I was really pleased with how this turned out (except for being able to tell where I creased the scrapbook paper  before mod podging) and plan to make a similar JOY sign for Christmas. I still need to hang it…story of my life. Maybe I’ll have it hung before Halloween? The girls painted the letters for me. :)

Boo Sign

 

Rolled Fabric Bows from Our Best Bites (My Pin)

I whipped these up the night before picture day and the girls love them. I tore 18″ long strips 1″ wide from my scrap fabrics (the pink is from Elle’s baby quilt!). You can see from the picture of the girls that the little rosettes are small. I think I made these a little too tight but the girls love them. I cut a little felt circle, hot glued the rosettes down, and glued the pearl in the middle.

Hairbows

 

Pumpkin Spice Granola Bars from Annie’s Eats (My Pin)

It’s a bit hard to review a recipe when you failed to follow the ingredient list or directions. The original recipe called for pretty specific things that I didn’t want leftovers of (prunes, pepitas, pumpkin spice, sunflower butter) and some of the things I just flt out substituted–I got a mix of nuts/dried fruits from the grocery to sub out the prunes and pecans. I used almonds. I used half almond butter and half peanut butter in lieu of sunflower butter. Instead of pumpkin spice (which I could have made), I just shook out the spices without measuring at all. I know. So sad, but I was in a hurry!

The bars didn’t hold up quite as nicely as I would have expected–maybe because I didn’t use pureed prunes? But the taste is fine (maybe I regret not measuring the spices more) and even though it is a bit crumbly it would be fine sprinkled over yogurt.

PicMonkey Collage

 

Not a pin…but I wanted to share since I’ll likely forget to share again once they’re done. I made some little Halloween skirts for the girls! Ok, so I’m not done with them yet (Evie has hers one to measure her tiny little waist so I could add elastic. Making little clothing items is a bucket list thing for me and I’ve been petrified to actually do something. I’m thinking of making rolled fabric bows with the leftover fabric.

Halloween Skirt

 

That’s all she wrote! Now it’s time for me to get busy on some of my quilting projects before Baby Billy Bobbette makes her appearance at Christmas. Whew!

 

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Pinspiration on Monday

Welcome to the Pin it and Do it edition of Inspiration on Monday! If you have a regular Inspiration on Monday post, go ahead and link it up below. If you’re curious about Pin it and Do it, the rules are simple–find something on Pinterest (or pin something to Pinterest) and do it! Hope you’re here to join the fun!

Inspiration on MondayAutumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

Link-Up Rules:

1. Link up your post(s) below.
2. Please link back to Inspiration on Monday or my blog somewhere in the post you are submitting
3. Please share the source that inspired you in your post. Credit where credit is due.
4. Try to comment on at least one other participant’s post. Encouragement can be so inspiring!

 

Thank you to everyone who has participated in Inspiration on Monday and Pin it and Do it over the past few months! I’m taking a little break from the link-up, so this will be the last one for a bit. 

Happy Creating!

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September Pin it and Do it | Inspiration on Monday

Posted 21 September, 2015 by Trish in Crafty / 12 Comments

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Autumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

 

Oh boy did I have big intentions for this Pin it and Do it! But as usual, time ran away from me and I feel like what I did manage to do was thrown together at the last minute (except the cross-stitch). I’m happy with the projects, though, and have pulled a number of pins over to Evernote (my new obsession) to try out over the next month before the October edition.  I hope you guys had fun with the challenge and look forward to hopping around to all your posts!

Pin it and Do it September Progress

 

Sticky Garlic Chicken Bites from Damn Delicious (My Pin)

Sticky Garlic Chicken

I had chicken in my fridge that needed to be cooked up, but when I went to search my In the Kitchen board on Pinterest, I found it seriously lacking in chicken recipes! I had meant to make this recipe before, so figured now was the time. Besides cutting and breading the chicken, it was incredibly easy and quick. The comments on the website note how salty the chicken tastes and I agree (we ate ours with rice which helped)–next time I’ll be sure to use low sodium soy sauce. I might also add a little more honey. The girls ate their chicken plain with the sauce for dipping.

But even besides the sauce, I love the idea of cutting up chicken breasts, breading it with panko, and oven roasting the little bites. Could be a versatile recipe base and those little nuggets cook up so quickly!

 

Halloween Spooky Sampler from Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery (My Pin)

Halloween Sampler Cross-stitch

Now that I’m done sewing all my hexies together, I needed something to keep my hands busy while we watch TV in the evenings. I tried that whole adult coloring thing and meh. So, I decided to pick up cross-stitch! I’ve done cross-stitching in the past, but it’s been at least a decade since I’ve picked up a piece of Aida to stitch. I’m loving this little project so far, even if it does shock me how long it actually takes! It probably takes me 4-5 episodes of X-Files to finish one square. I’m almost done with the squares and then there is a pretty elaborate border. I’m sure I’ll finish it by Halloween, though.

 

Necklace Organizer from 32 Turns (My Pin)

Necklace Holder

For the past five and a half years, I’ve been looking at the ugly iron holder at my closet entrance. I NEVER iron (unless it’s crafting type stuff, where I actually keep my iron), so it makes no sense for me to store my never used ironing board in my closet. Do you have things around the house that you can’t believe you’ve lived with for so long? (like in Evie’s room I hung an unfinished quilt top over her window to block out the sun…it has race cars on it and does not match her pretty purple butterfly room, but yet the quilt top has been hanging there for two years).

Anyway, now that I’m collecting and wearing statement jewelry a bit more often, I decided I need an actual rack to hang my necklaces on. I went to Home Depot, scavenged for a piece of trim at their cutting area, had Scott cut it down for me, twisted in some hooks, and spray painted everything white. Voila! I’m still trying to figure out what to do with my scarfs–I’m thinking some pretty knobs to screw into the wall.

 

Ribbon Hairbow from Kids’ Activities Blog (My Pin)

Ribbon Hairbow

This is actually an unfinished project started at the Nth hour. I bought some ruffled ribbon and sewed the little flower, but it still needs to be finished with felt on the back, the actual clip, and the pearl glued/sewn down. Annnnnnd, I’m sure I’ll need to make a second one so that the girls don’t fight over the new clip. Yes, they are already at that stage. Though Evie still likes to chew on her clips rather than actually wear them.

 

All in all I feel pretty good about the progress. I wanted to make something sweet to eat, but Scott will be out much of this week and I can’t be trusted with goodies. Ha!

Looking forward to doing a few more things by October’s Pin it and Do it!

 

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Pinspiration on Monday

Welcome to the Pin it and Do it edition of Inspiration on Monday! If you have a regular Inspiration on Monday post, go ahead and link it up below. If you’re curious about Pin it and Do it, the rules are simple–find something on Pinterest (or pin something to Pinterest) and do it! Hope you’re here to join the fun!

Inspiration on MondayAutumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

Link-Up Rules:

1. Link up your post(s) below.
2. Please link back to Inspiration on Monday or my blog somewhere in the post you are submitting
3. Please share the source that inspired you in your post. Credit where credit is due.
4. Try to comment on at least one other participant’s post. Encouragement can be so inspiring!

 

The next Inspiration on Monday will be October 5th. The next Pin it and Do it edition will be Monday October 17th!

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Simple Tips to Enhance Food Photography | Inspiration on Monday

Posted 7 September, 2015 by Trish in In the Kitchen / 12 Comments

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Simple Tips to Enhance Food Photography

 

Food photography is something that has long baffled me. This has especially been true since Pinterest has stormed the scene and changed the way that many bloggers started presenting material. Vertical pictures are more appealing than horizontal pictures. I could always tell when my husband was using my camera because he was the only one taking vertical shots–not anymore! Add words to a picture or don’t? What makes you want to pin from one website versus another?

I’m writing this post today because recently a few people have asked me to share my food photography secrets. I want to laugh inside because…oh my gosh I know nothing about food photography! Some of my recent shots have been lucky! And I’ll admit that many of the pictures below were taken with my iphone. I shoot a meal right before we eat and if I didn’t hurry then the whole family starts rioting. But…here are a few basic tips that I can share.

Simple Tips to Enhance Your Food Photography

Use Natural Lighting

This is tricky for me because I have terrible lighting in my kitchen. I don’t have any good photos of using a flash, but flash creates a very flat picture with no depth. I try to move my food to a window that is giving off light, and I have my eye on a Lowel EGO Digital Imaging Light. This is a more natural/softer light that many product/photographers use to help create a more natural light setting indoors. Because come November, trying to find natural light at dinner time will be impossible. Also used with a indoor light is a reflector board to help bounce off and distribute light. I’d give you more details, but I’ve never actually experimented with this.

Steamy Kitchen–a food blog–provides a great example of lighting in her post about Food Photography.

The Sweet-Simple Life has a great post on how to shoot at night, but without the expensive Lowel lighting.

Steamy Kitchen also has a great post on food outtakes and what made the cut. It’s interesting to see her commentary and perspective.

My current trick? Take my dinner outside when the sun is setting and place on a shady spot of our patio table. Bonus is that the background gives nice texture and I don’t have to later mess with white balance.

Kitchen Lights v Natural Lights

 

The picture to the left above was taken on my kitchen counter (with the crappiest linoleum white countertops you can imagine). The second was taken on my back patio with no additional light or flash. While the background makes a huge difference, you can also see the different colors of the plates. The plate on the right is more of a true white while the plate on the left is yellower. I did not edit these photos in any way. And both were shot with my iphone.

See the pull-back. There was so much sun coming into my backyard because we have western exposure, so I created the shadowing with my body. Sneaky sneaky! If you take a photo in full sun everything will be completely washed out. This is why I also like to take photos of my girls when the sun has set just below the fence line or when it’s cloudy. It also helps with very harsh shadows.

Photography Pull-Back

 

Garnish/Use Food Props/Carefully Plate Food

In the very first photo of the Shrimp Dragon Noodles, I peppered on a bit of cilantro at the end. Not necessarily because I like it (I don’t), but because I knew the green would add a little contrast. I’m usually lazy about this step but you’ll notice on food blogs how often garnishes are used to add interest.

Additionally, take a little napkin and wipe up any errant spills. See the pork tenderloin picture down at the very bottom–now I would have drained the beans a little more and sopped up some of that juice. Nothing like soggy beans to say Yum!! Food bloggers are insane about this–they’ll use tweezers to carefully place peas or maybe even pick out the rice that spilled into the pork in the picture immediately below. I ain’t got time for that but I do try to make the food look a little more appealing.

Props can include anything and everything–some people collect these. I usually just use my fork–or in the picture of the noodles the chopsticks.

Cropping and Depth of Field

With the iphone, I don’t pay much attention to the depth of field because it’s automatic on my phone. I actually kind of like not having to mess with this. With my dSLR I can choose to have my entire plate in focus or just a portion of my plate in focus. I think this is absolutely a matter of taste and takes a lot of practice to master. You can se that the Brussels Sprouts in the picture below are out of focus but the pork is in focus (or at least most of it). This is creating depth of field. I personally don’t like when too much of the picture is out of focus, but it can be helpful when you really want the focus to be on the food.

Another trick–plate the food on a smaller plate! Ever plate something up to take a picture and realize that 3/4 of your plate is empty? The picture immediately below was taken on a salad plate. The food is a bit more crammed together, but I think it is better than when everything was spread out on my much bigger plate.

Finally, I’ve been experimenting with cropping part of the dish out of the picture instead of having my plate be the exact center of a square photo. This draws the eye a little more to the food, gives a bit more contrast, and creates more interest. Again, I’m still playing with this but the posts I’ve done with a cropped plate seem to have received the most photo specific comments.

And just to show you the difference in a few years…*shudders*

 

Food Photography Much Improved

 

 

Browse Pinterest to Find Appealing Pictures

Take a look on Pinterest and see which recipes catch your eye. Are they vertical or horizontal? Do they show a portion of the food or the whole dish? Do they use props? Is the focus range wide or narrow? What can you tell about the lighting? By looking at your favorite websites and Pinterest, you can start to see some trends in what pulls your interest and give you something to shoot for.

Keep Practicing

Because I surely don’t have all the answers!!

Curious what tips you have for creating more appealing pictures of food!!

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Inspiration on Monday

Welcome to the First September edition of Inspiration on Monday! Inspiration on Monday is a forum to share things that we’ve created and things that we are doing to help inspire others. Posts about projects in progress, finished projects, tutorials, and how-tos are all welcome. Feel free to share recipes, crafts, lifestyle, organizing, and DIY tips, and any other idea that can spark inspiration.

Inspiration on Monday

Link-Up Rules:

1. Link up your post(s) below. This can be a recent post or an old post, but please do not re-submit a post you’ve already submitted for Inspiration on Monday.
2. Please link back to Inspiration on Monday or my blog somewhere in the post you are submitting
3. If applicable, please share the source that inspired you in your post. Credit where credit is due.
4. Try to comment on at least one other participant’s post. Encouragement can be so inspiring!

 

The next Inspiration on Monday will be September 21st. What inspiration has struck you lately?

Autumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

Remember–the next Inspiration on Monday will be a special Pin it an Do it edition! (Though you can always use Pinterest as your inspiration and post it on the first and third Mondays).

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Autumn Pin it and Do it Coming Soon!

Posted 1 September, 2015 by Trish in Crafty / 30 Comments

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Autumn 2015 Pin it and Do it Challenge

 

 

It’s Fall!! Oh wait, it’s just the first day of September. But that means that Autumn starts in 21 days. The stores are already filled with Halloween decor and fall foliage. There’s just something about the changing of the seasons that is so exciting to me. I find it energizing and I can temporarily be fooled into thinking I can do all the things! All the crafts! All the baking!

Just me?  Nah…I doubt it. Just think about the smell of pumpkin and pie spices baking and tell me that doesn’t get you a little excited for the change from summer to fall.

It’s been two years since I’ve held an official Pin it and Do it Challenge, but I’m bringing it back for two rounds–once in September and once in October. The link-ups will correspond with the third week Inspiration on Monday of each month (Sept 21 and Oct 19th). These link-ups will become Pinspiration on Monday…you know, because I can.  Note–if you do not use Pinterest, you can still link up your non-Pinterest-y Inspiration posts per normal on these weeks.

Pin it and Do it Details

What – The premise is simple–choose at least one thing that you have pinned and do it! This could be cooking that recipe, experimenting with photos, trying a new styled outfit, doing all those leg squats, reading that book–however you use Pinterest, you can make this challenge work for you. If you have any questions about whether something might work, just ask! I know my first project for the challenge will be this Halloween cross-stitch.

Where – Sharing what you’ve done is best done on your blog, but tumblr or instagram could absolutely work as well. Please use #PinItDoIt on social media to keep in touch.

When – Link-ups for your progress will be September 21st and October 19th. Feel free to participate in just one month or both and you can post any time and as many times as you’d like. If you want an email reminder, let me know and I promise to only bug you once.

Why – Because sometimes we all just need a group challenge or a kick in the pants to get stuff done.

What do you think? Ready to do/make some those pins you’ve been collecting?

PS–leave your Pinterest URL in the comments below so I can make sure I’m following you!

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Displaying Toddler Artwork | Inspiration on Monday

Displaying Toddler Artwork | Inspiration on Monday

    Once the girls started going to preschool, I started accumulating so much artwork. The packrat in me doesn’t have it in me to toss these gems, so I’ve been thinking and thinking about what I wanted to do with all the art. Mostly they just collect in paper grocery sacks (divided by each girl at least), but I finally took some time to implement the first of two ways I’ll tackle toddler/kiddo art […]

Posted 17 August, 2015 by Trish in Crafty, Mommyhood / 17 Comments
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Getting Back Your Crafty Habit | Inspiration on Monday

Getting Back Your Crafty Habit | Inspiration on Monday

Hi, I’m Heather from Based on a True Story. For the past three years I was serving as a state coordinator for a quilting charity. I made a lot of quilts and at the same time managed to get out of the habit of quilting. How is that possible? I would have deadlines for big quilt presentations and I’d push through to get enough quilts. I’d take a few day off to recover … and […]

Posted 3 August, 2015 by Trish in Crafty / 5 Comments
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Marshmallow Playdough | Inspiration on Monday

Marshmallow Playdough | Inspiration on Monday

Hi guys!! Before we begin, I want to introduce a Guest Hostess for today’s Inspiration on Monday. Bex is joining us from An Armchair by the Sea. She is mum to two littles, lives in the UK, and blogs mostly about books but also shares crafty ideas (she is a quite the crafting inspiration!). She also hosts a regular book swap (Ninja Book Swap). You can also find her on Twitter. I hope you’ll give […]

Posted 20 July, 2015 by Trish in Crafty / 11 Comments
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Closet Organization using KonMari Method | Inspiration on Monday

Closet Organization using KonMari Method | Inspiration on Monday

Hello everybody!! Or perhaps I should say Good News Everybody! I’ve finally had a chance to organize my clothes using the method described in The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up which means I am one step closer to never mentioning the book again. Bahahahaha. Just kidding. I’ll be talking about this book for the rest of my life. I keep my clothing in three places in the bedroom. I have two dressers with my casual […]

Posted 7 July, 2015 by Trish in Life / 23 Comments
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Six Household Organizational Tricks| Inspiration on Monday

Six Household Organizational Tricks| Inspiration on Monday

Hi! Welcome to a special edition of Inspiration on Monday–the week in which I give myself more work than I probably should. Ha! Since there are five Mondays in June, I thought for this 5th week we could have a themed event–Organization! If you missed the memo and have another type of post planned, no worries–link it up! Next Monday will be a “regular” link-up as well. If you have a favorite way to stay […]

Posted 29 June, 2015 by Trish in Life / 28 Comments
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Cooking Perfect Chicken | Inspiration on Monday

Cooking Perfect Chicken | Inspiration on Monday

Image Credit: Steve Johnson | Flickr Creative Commons I was racking my brain trying to come up with a topic for today’s Inspiration on Monday, and finally last Friday’s post about Chicken Piccata helped spark an idea. Though I’m not sure you’ll find much inspiration in this actual post–rather I’m seeking inspiration from you! Help a girl out, ok? You see, I’m not sure I ever learned how to properly cook chicken breasts. If I […]

Posted 15 June, 2015 by Trish in In the Kitchen / 20 Comments
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