Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Where I am/100 Followers/I want your Button!


Where I am /
100 followers /
I want your button!

Today is a wonderful day: I am in the middle of a fantastic vacation in one of the most beautiful places in the world, AND I officially have 100 followers!! WOW.  It’s amazing to think that I have made so many blog friends in just two months. Thank you all for reading, commenting, and being so lovely!



(I didn't actually land on my dog's head after that jump, btw...)

So, in celebration of this little milestone, I would like to show my love by putting your blog button on my page! If you’re a follower and would like to have your button on my sidebar, send a 260(length) x 105(height) .jpg file to jkluftinger@gmail.com along with the link to your fabulous page. No charge, of course…This is a celebration!

Here is a little peek at where I am vacationing at the moment: Tofino, B.C.  It’s so gorgeous, and it makes me SO excited for my big move to the coast next month! Eeeeek!

Amazing tall trees

Waiting for my fish tacos at the famous "Tacofino"

Omgggggggg!

Right outside our back door!

Happy campers :)

Driftwood walking

Getting my yoga on

Foggy day

Tiny little jelly we found on the beach

Helloooo

:)




Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Strawberry Freezer Jam



It’s strawberry season!!!

Around this time every year, my mom and I make a massive batch of strawberry freezer jam, so I’m going to share the recipe with you! If you’ve never tried freezer jam, you are truly missing out. Even people who hate jam fall in love with it. Instead of the gloopy, over-sugared, processed tasting junk you get from the store, freezer jam retains the flavor of freshly picked fruit. It’s essentially like spreading mashed up, beautifully ripe strawberries on your toast… and that heavenly taste of summer sweetness will be extra special during the long, cold winter months!




We picked our berries locally, and they were so beautiful! Shiny and glossy on the outside, and a lovely deep red all the way through the inside.  Definitely beats the white and watery ones you get from Costco... However, if you’re not lucky enough to have a berry patch nearby, store-bought ones will be fine this time of year.



We picked about 25 pounds of berries and got around 50 jars of jam out of it… 50 jars of jam for 50 bucks!? Jam will cost you about $5 at the store, so by making our own jam we are saving close to $200!



The Recipe: Strawberry Freezer Jam

Ingredients:

·      4 cups crushed strawberries (just mash them with a potato masher until it looks the way you want it)
·      3 ¼ cups granulated sugar
·      1 box CERTO Light Pectin Crystals

Directions:

Place the crushed strawberries into a large mixing bowl.
Add the CERTO and ¼ cup of the sugar
Let stand for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
After 30 minutes, add the rest of the sugar and stir for 3 minutes
Put into clean containers filling up to ¼ inch from the rim. Cover with plastic screw-on canning lids. Leave at room temperature for 24 hours until set.

Store your jam in the fridge for up to 3 weeks, or in the freezer for up to a year!



ENJOY

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Stamped Anchor Tank Top



A few weeks ago I bought a big men’s t-shirt from the thrift store for a few bucks (see it here), and I knew I wanted to make it into a slouchy tank top with some kind of design on the front. I looked around for stamps FOREVER but I couldn’t find one that I liked, so I learned how to make my own!! This DIY tutorial will show you how to make your very own stamped tank top, in any design you like… So fun :)



Materials:
-       Shirt (and a sewing machine if you plan on altering it)
-       Sticky foam sheets
-       Block of wood
-       Fabric-friendly paint (I used this, and it’s fantastic)
-       Felt

Step 1: Lay out your shirt and mark where you want to cut it… don’t stress about this too much, it’s supposed to look slouchy!

Step 2: Cut it and finish the edges with a sewing machine (or just leave it unfinished, it would probably look sweet)



Step 3: Draw or trace your desired stamp design onto a sticky-back foam sheet

Step 4: Cut out your design (this is easiest with a small, sharp knife)

Step 5: Peel the backing off of the foam sheet and stick your cutout onto a block of wood… you just made a stamp!



Step 6: Make your stamp pad: put a dollop of fabric-friendly paint onto a plastic plate and lay a square of felt on top. Let the paint bleed through the felt until it is saturated (you can help the process along by pressing down on the felt with a popsicle stick or something)



Step 7: Dip your stamp into the stamp pad and lightly press it down onto your shirt (IMPORTANT: put something between the front and back of the shirt to prevent the paint from bleeding through to the other side… I used a piece of poster board)

Step 8: If you want to change colours, gently wipe the stamp with a damp paper towel and create a new stamp pad

Step 9: Let it dry!









YOU'RE DONE! you crafty thing, you!



I just know I’m going to go on a fabric-stamping rampage now that I’ve learned this trick! I plan on stamping a bunch of throw pillows for our new couch… I think one with a bunch of mustaches would be so awesome. Any other ideas??

XOX

Monday, July 2, 2012

Baked Mini Corn Dogs


I love corn dogs... Crispy cornmeal batter hugging a big, juicy hotdog on a stick. YUM. I really could eat them every day, but since they pack about a million calories each, and are full of stuff I really shouldn’t be sticking in my body on a regular basis, I’ve had to label corn dogs a “sometimes food”.

BUT THEN I CAME UP WITH THIS RECIPE! These are my version of a healthy corn dog! You still get all the good stuff, but in a mini, baked-not-fried version that won’t ruin your waistline. These are perfect for appetizers, snacks for kids, and soup accompaniers. Serve with ketchup and mustard for dipping!





RECIPE: Mini Baked Corn Dogs
(makes about 24)

Ingredients:
·      ¾ cup (175 ml) cornmeal
·      1 ¼ cups (300 ml) skim milk
·      1 cup (250 ml) all-purpose flour
·      1/3 cup (75 ml) granulated sugar
·      1 tbsp (15 ml) baking powder
·      ½ tsp (2 ml) salt
·      1 egg
·      ¼ cup (58 ml) vegetable oil
·      Hotdogs, cut up

Directions:
·      Combine cornmeal and milk. Let stand 10 minutes.
·      Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
·      Add egg and oil to cornmeal mixture and mix well.
·      Add cornmeal mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined (don’t over mix).
·      Fill greased mini-muffin cups 2/3 full and press a hotdog piece into the center of each muffin (not quite to the bottom, you want at least a centimeter of cornmeal mixture between the dog and the bottom of the pan)
·      Bake at 400°F (200°C) for 10-15 minutes, or until the muffins turn a lovely golden brown colour
·      Serve hot, with ketchup and mustard for dipping!


Enjoy!! xox