Easter Treats

Easter is just around the corner so I thought I would post some fun Easter treats I’ve brought to family gatherings.

The first are Peeps Nest Cookies which start with a basic sugar cookie (the pre-made tube you slice and bake work fine).  I use some food coloring and vanilla or cream cheese frosting to make them festive. Then I mix shredded coconut and chocolate frosting in a big bowl. I can’t remember the exact frosting to coconut ratio, but they’re both fairly inexpensive (especially with coupons!) so I pick up a few extra of each. I believe is its 3-4 bags of coconut and one jar of frosting. I just start with the coconut in a bowl and slowly add in a bit of frosting until I get the texture right. Too much frosting and the nest will melt or get a bit soggy.  Once the consistency is right, use your fingers to pinch the mixture into the shape of a ring around the cookies. I usually let them sit uncovered overnight so the frosting hardens a bit. Then place jelly beans and peeps on top and you’re all done!

The second is Spinach Dip Bread Bunny. I use Knorr veggie mix and follow the recipe on the back except I double the sour cream and use half the mayo. Then the bunny was made with a bread boule, sandwich bun, baguette, chives, and olives.

Easter Main Image

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Trash to Treasure (Lingerie) Chest

We have an empty room in the house that we are trying to decorate as a stylish guest room but choosing colors, patterns, and furniture that will also work when it someday serves as a nursery.  Here is the link to the bench from a bookshelf that is also in this room.

There is a small space in the room in between the door and the closet that is only about 29″ wide.  I wanted a tall bureau to fit in this area so we would have as much storage as possible, but I needed something relatively skinny to fit the spot.  After months of searching on CraigsList, I came across a 1960’s French Provincial lingerie chest that had been through the ringer.

It was in rough shape!  When I was sanding it down, I think I went through 4-5 layers of paint – purple, beige, blue, and the original paint. It was probably toxic and I’m very glad I had a mask and gloves!  Even the poor handles had coats and coats of paint.  I saw on an episode of HGTV Rehab Addict that you can remove paint from metal by soaking it in a crock pot.  It works! A few coats of primer and spray paint and I think the piece came out great and it is the perfect fit for my space.

Project cost: About $70 ($40 for the bureau about about $30 for primer and paint).

Lingerie Chest Before and After Continue reading

Linen Closet from a China Cabinet

I needed some additional space on my third floor (master bedroom and bathroom area) to hold odds and ends like linens, toilet paper, towels, soap, etc.  Our bathroom has a small sink with some storage underneath and the bedroom has a typical bi-fold accordion door closet with limited space.  No hall closets anywhere in the house.  So, I thought it might be fun to find an old china cabinet on CraigsList and give it a nice update.  I wanted cabinet and shelf space but wanted it to look nice since it would be in the hallway.  Here are some before, during, and after photos. (I completed this about a year ago but didn’t get around to posting it until today.

China Cabinet 1 b&A

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I bought my house in September a few years back and because it got cold out pretty quickly that year, I couldn’t do much to the small patio area off the kitchen. I did have months to stare at it and swear I would make it pretty. It was so boring! Gray cinder block with moss and the neighbors ivy creeping over the wall. I was out there the first warm weekend, and the next eight weekends after that. I really wanted to hide the grooves between the bricks. I felt that if I just painted without filling in the grooves, it would look like elementary school or Costco walls.

I bought some tools and quickcrete and hoped for the best. I called it “mucko” – mock stucko. I originally was going with a combination of “faux” and “stucko” but that just sounded naughty!  I had cuts, sores, bruises, sunburn, and I was exhausted. But I think it was all worth it.

Patio Before and After

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Ikea Chair Redo and No Sew Valance

Back in my spacious Connecticut apartment, I bought four “Roger” chairs for about $60 each from Ikea to fit a small dining table I had.  My parents, who live in Rhode Island, were able to store them until I bought my house in Philadelphia. The new house had an area for a larger dining table I was looking on the Ikea website a few additional Roger chairs.  They had been discontinued.  I turned to my favorite site, (this was before Pinterest!) CraigsList, and was searching for Roger chairs.  I stumbled across a listing for four chairs plus the matching dining table for $100! It was in NY near the NJ line, but my parents were driving through that area the next day on their way to visit me and were able to pick them up.  It worked out fantastically!  Until a few years later when I was bored with the look of the chairs. Since I had assembled them in the first place, I knew it would be really easy to switch the fabric, especially if I cheated and just covered over the old fabric.  A few screws, some fabric, and a staple gun and I was all set!  I had some extra leftover fabric so I looked up no-sew valances on Pinterest and found few easy steps on blogs.  Here are the results:

Chair Before and After

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