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I Made Something Awesome – A Kitchen Bulletin Board

10 Sep

If you’re friends with me on facebook, you’ll have seen how worried I was that our new fridge was going to be nonmagnetic…. yeah, it is. That only sucks so bad because A – we have a whole lotta magnets and B – we had a thing where we were getting magnets from all the new places we visited (states or cities, not like every landmark). So… yeah. Case in point:

I moved a lot of them onto our dishwasher, but it’s not the same and it’s much smaller and also our sweet little puppy likes to think they’re her toys. On the fridge we kept them up high so she couldn’t get to them. With the dishwasher… not so much.


While I try to magneticize random things in my house, I at least solved half (or 1/4) of the problem – where do we put things like notes, coupons, wedding invitations! Obviously a bulletin board is the answer to that. And guess what – probably about 2 years ago I bought this crappy bulletin board (note that the previous owner was obviously a tween)¬†that I’ve never used and has been sitting in our basement for quite some time. Yes, ok, call me a hoarder. But hey – it worked out! It just took 2 years to find it’s true purpose in life. ūüôā


Stevie helped.

So I ripped off the white border and covered it in some lace I had (don’t get mad at me for destroying it, it had some pretty big holes in it already so was ready to be repurposed) using my handy little glue gun. I bought a couple of empty frames this past spring for just such a purpose (or another purpose, but this is now it’s real purpose!), and so all I had to do after the lace was added on was nail these suckers together.

instagram makes everything look better

And now we have a fun new bulletin board in our kitchen. ūüôā

ta da!



Repurposing Awesome: Candy Bars

27 Jan

We somehow ended up with a candy hoard in our pantry. This is only partially not my fault in any way. I’m not even a candy eater! Ok fine, I have a soft spot for dark chocolate that I developed thanks to Trader Joe’s and their insanely addicting dark chocolate bars with sea salt. Seriously, if you haven’t had any sort of dark chocolate/sea salt combination, DO IT. Or, I guess, don’t, if you don’t want to get addicted to it. But anyway, my husband is the chocolate eater so between me, his mom, and Christmas as a whole, we ended up with 8,000 lbs. of chocolate in our pantry this year alone. I mean,¬†some was eaten, but most certainly not all.

And I somehow ended up married to a declutterer. How did that happen??

The declutterer¬†went into the pantry and produced some soon-to-expire chocolate¬†(they were¬†“best by” dates, not like it’s going to make you sick). My husband doesn’t like expiration dates. Or, rather, he loves them because he obsesses over them. Me? Smell test all the way, baby. Why waste something if it’s not bad, just because there’s a date on it? My nose knows whether it’s bad or not.

He was all “OMG! We’re going to have to throw out all this chocolate!” Yes, he says OMG in real life.

Ok, not really.

So me, the hoarder hates-to-throw-anything-out-er, was all, “Um, no. We are not throwing¬†that out.” Then he wanted to know what I proposed to do with it and I was like “Boo-ya, I already have a recipe for that pinned on Pinterest!” and he was like “You did what… on where?”

Silly boy.

So even though this is more of a hot topic just after Halloween, I think it’s a subject¬†that can certainly be¬†addressed now as well. People get chocolate for Christmas, too! And, actually, we didn’t have any chocolate on Halloween (or trick-or-treaters for that matter).

I spent a good chunk of my time 2 weekends ago¬†making (and eating) two delicious desserts using leftover chocolate. Yeah, it was a couple weekends ago, sorry. But I’m still eating the dough out of the freezer, so it still counts.

Candy Bar Cookies adapted from The Downey Patriot
A bunch of chocolate (seriously, this is a “use as much or as little as you want” kind of thing – use mini chocolate bars, large chocolate bars, bars with nuts, whatever)
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
3 cups flour

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Chop candy bars in a blender (I really need a food processor). Don’t chop them too thin, or you’ll just have chocolate powder! Cream butter and sugars in a bowl. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend well. Fold in candy bar pieces. Scoop batter onto a greased cookie sheet with a teaspoon. Bake 9-11 minutes until golden. Let rest on cookie sheet 2 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Cool completely. Makes 2-3 dozen.

Fudge Brownies with Mucho Extra Chocolate
Fudge brownie mix – eggs and oil, quantity varying depending on the mix
Chocolate squares with caramel inside
Regular chocolate bar

Chop the regular chocolate bar in a blender (food processor), this time it can be chocolate powder… or chunks, whatever you prefer. Make brownie mix per bag instructions. Pour brownie mix in pan. Break caramel chocolate squares off, press into brownie mix, leaving enough space between each so that there is one chocolate square per brownie. Shake chocolate powder/chunks on top. Bake per package instructions.

This was my own little concoction. Obviously not hard, but trust me, delish. That melting caramel inside each brownie… yum. My husband was like “OMG BROWNIES” and pacing the floor while they were in the oven.

It’s so simple, but I think the biggest “duh” to come out of this, is to use chopped up chocolate bars instead of chocolate chips in cookies! Or maybe it’s just because we always have chocolate bars in our pantry that this seems amazing to me. I will never buy chocolate chips again. Unless we miraculously get no chocolate in a year (not gonna happen).

Don’t throw that chocolate out! Unless it looks funky, then throw it out. But if it doesn’t, make cookies and brownies and force your friends and family to eat it.