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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

#25 - The Perfect Biscuit

I know I haven't been posting much lately; life is BUSY! There are some truly awesome projects in the works at Casa Leipprandt that I'm excited to share with you soon.

But today - let's talk about biscuits. I love biscuits. The Southern American kind of biscuits that is. Warm and flaky, served with butter or with a thick slice of ham sandwiched between them. I'm a sucker for them whenever they are on a menu and one of my 30 Before 30 goals is to perfect a homemade version.

So on a whim last week I whipped out the only cookbook on my counter and gave the only biscuit recipe I had all of the ingredients for a whirl.

And they were mediocre. On their own (no butter!) they were a 5. Flaky and moist but with a bit of baking powder aftertaste. With butter, they got a 6 and when topped with chicken and gravy they were decent. But decent is not what I'm striving for. The version I'm after needs to be an 9 on its own AT LEAST. And a dab of butter or a slice of ham needs to elevate them to swoon-worthiness.

What a wonderful surprise this week when I received a letter in the mail from my grandmother that included an article from her local paper all about biscuits and at least 4 different versions to try out. I bought buttermilk at the store yesterday... so maybe during nap time today I'll give it another go. Don't worry, I'll keep you posted. :)

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Squirt Rides

Last Christmas we bought the Squirt a Strider bike. B Daddy and I were WAY more excited about it than he was at the time. Over the past two weeks though, the bike has become a pretty big hit and we thought a video was in order.

Enjoy and have a great weekend! Oh and the part at the end where he's boo hooing is when I told him we had to go home.

Friday, August 19, 2011

T-shirts to Fun Fall Hat

I might be in danger of going overboard with all the things I've now made out of old t-shirts...but I just can't help myself. Fabric is usually expensive...rarely soft and oh yeah, requires a trip to the store to purchase. Since my sewing inspiration usually strikes at nap time, it's SO much more convenient to reach into my stash of well-loved but no longer worn t-shirts and pull out some pre-washed, pre-loved and totally FREE fabric.

My last t-shirt project was this dress, which I found online at Dana's site MADE. And once upon a time I made this sweet newborn gown for my niece out of an old tee. This project for the Squirt was made using a pattern and tutorial I found at I Am Momma - Hear Me Roar. She has the BEST boy projects and her creativity blows me away.

I've still got a bit of embellishing to do (couldn't find an embroidery needle and was nap time) but my client was pleased nonetheless. With cooler weather around the corner (a girl can dream right?) I can't wait to put it to use!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

An Update on the Little Ones

It's Thursday and both B Daddy and I woke up wishing it were Friday. We're burnt out and ready for the weekend. So instead of pulling together and editing pics to update y'all on one of the half dozen almost done projects I have lying on the dining room table, I am going to take the lazy blogger's way out and write about my chilluns.

The Squirt
Likes: The Incredibles, riding his bike, Band Aids, bath time
Dislikes: all vegetables and most fruits, sharing
Favorite Color: blue (we're unsure if he is aware of other colors)
Favorite Food: Craisins
Newly Acquired Skills: climbing out of his crib, remembering song lyrics
Question of the Month: "How was your day Daddy?"
Best Feature: insanely deep brown eyes
Personality in a Nutshell: Adventurous Helper
Sweet B
Likes: anything edible, bottles, puzzles (strictly for chewing purposes)
Dislikes: having her diaper changed, riding in the car seat
Favorite Activity: swinging
Newly Acquired Skills: crawling and pulling up
Strangest Thing I've Found in Her Mouth: Dental floss
Best Feature: an infectious gummy smile
Personality in a Nutshell: Happy-Go-Lucky Gourmand

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Slipcover City

Thanks for all your input on the artwork decision...I am really a fan of the Vineyard like many of you, but the jury is still out. :)

Guess what I'm working on this week???

I know, crazy right? But these video tutorials from Miss Mustard Seed make it seem totally doable. If the whole thing works, I'll have spent about $100 and probably a third of my life slipcovering the sofa. And if the whole thing doesn't work out, you'll never hear about it again. Well, that's probably not true. Misery loves company. I'll keep you posted!

Everyone is thrilled about the undertaking.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Fear of Commitment

Next week my uncle is coming to do some renovation work on our living room and I can't wait to share the changes with you! It's definitely going to be a slow evolution as we get time and money to work on the room over the next several months, but I need some advice/opinions STAT.

We need want to purchase a piece of art to hang prominently in the room as part of the update and I'm in need of advice. Something about buying ART, even if it is a reproduction, intimidates me. I feel like it's a momentous occasion and I'm rendered utterly incapable of pulling the trigger on my own.

There is virtually NO color in our room currently. Gray walls (love them) dark brown coffee table (love it), brown sofas (hopefully getting the slipcover treatment soon) get the idea. I want to bring in a piece that I can draw colors out of for the rest of the room. And lately I've been hung up on reds, indigos and golden hues.

What do you think of these??

Van Gogh - The Red Vineyard at Arles

Van Gogh - The Sower
Hokusai - Ocean Waves

Cezanne - Mount Sainte Victoire (1906)

Van Gogh - Wheatfield with Cypresses

I want something bold, but not something that I'm going to tire of looking at ALL the time. I'm thinking of buying from anyone had a good experience buying from them or another online art reproduction company? If you're reading this I really need your opinion. So leave a comment okay! Thanks!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


When the Squirt was #2's age I was constantly wondering what to do with him. He was mobile, but really too young to "play". So he'd crawl around after me as I did things around the house and when I'd sit down to play with him, I'd be bored in about  5 minutes. Luckily this has not been an issue with #2.

She LOVES to "play" with her big brother. He entertains her just by being around, such a huge blessing. Unfortunately he doesn't always appreciate her company.

But at least I get some time to myself, right?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Christmas in July Craft Party

Last month most of the girls on my mom's side of the family (we missed you Erin!) got together to do some crafting. The idea was to make little Christmas gifts for neighbors, co-workers, etc. and have some gifts already knocked out before the insane holiday season got started.

We decided to try our hands at glass etching, figuring it was an easy way to make a custom gift. As usual with this group, we did a lot of talking, a lot of eating (my sister made Christmas cookies!) and a little bit of work.

The process is super simple. You need a bottle of etching cream, craft brushes and a stencil.

We used Contact paper, which was pretty easy to position and re-position until you had it just where you wanted it on your piece. The Cricut machines made cutting the stencils super fast, but I've seen stencils around blogland cut out with an Exacto knife as well. (I have no where near the patience needed to do that.)

Once your stencil is cut, you just position it, paint on the etching cream and wait. We found that waiting longer than the bottle recommended worked out better - we waited about 10 minutes. And I don't think you can go wrong waiting even longer.

After your time is up, wipe away the cream (Use gloves! Etching cream is nasty stuff.) and remove your stencil. Voila! Simple, quick and so pretty.

These goblets were my project. B Daddy made fun of the idea of having numbered glasses, but I LOVE them. No more, is this my glass or yours?? 4 is my favorite number. Drinking from my Four Glass makes me smile. And I am sure I've seen etched glasses like these somewhere expensive before...

I loved my aunt's sweet country-esque design. Perfect for the kitchen!

And we all loved Mom's Laugh Often vase...who wouldn't love to see that on their desk?!

My cousin made monogrammed beer steins and wine glasses for her neighbors but I somehow failed to get any pictures of her pieces. I think she was the only one of us who planned to gift any of her projects anyways, the idea of parting with any of our beautiful projects was too much for the rest of us to bear. Guess we'll be needing to have a Christmas in September party too...

Monday, August 1, 2011

This House is Home

I never knew what to say when people would ask, "where are you from?" Our family moved around so much... there wasn't a city, a house, a state that I could answer them with. Wherever our family was became home and that was good enough. It was a great family. And it never bothered me much, that I didn't have a physical place I called "home".

Most of my mom's family live in the Savannah area and we'd go there for Christmas and Thanksgiving now and then growing up. I think I came to think of it as a sort of home. But then we'd be there and they'd have to give us directions to the Piggly-Wiggly or they'd talk about high tide and I'd realize Savannah wasn't home. It was their home, but it wasn't mine.

Georgia was the closest thing I ever had to a geographical home. I guess that's why I applied to three colleges here even though I went to high school in England and Illinois. I wonder if that's a universal thing, people gravitating towards home, or if it's just something I did out of a subconscious need to belong somewhere.

Once B Daddy and I got engaged we started looking for a home. This house was the 2nd place our realtor showed us, 2nd out of what was eventually dozens. B Daddy felt home right away. It took me much longer.  We came back twice with the realtor and brought our parents and our friends to see it before we made an offer. We'd walk up on the back porch to peek in the windows and imagine ourselves out there with a glass of wine staring out into the trees.

B Daddy moved in before we got married and slept in the guest room. His grandparents gifted us a king size bed for a wedding present and I remember the day we went out and brought it home, strapped to the top of his green Ford Explorer. We wrestled it down the tiny hallway, set it on the box springs and jumped on it like little kids.

On our wedding night we came back to this house and B Daddy picked me up and carried me over the threshold and down the same tiny hallway to our room for the first time ever.

That king size bed was where I lay the night I miscarried our first child. B Daddy held my hand and drove to the drug store at 11pm to get Tylenol and I curled up in that bed and wept when it was over.

We came here -home- from the doctor's appointment telling us our second baby too was gone and that hot afternoon we knelt and planted red and white flowers in the front bed to remember.

I cried the night we got in the car and left this home for the last time as a couple with no kids. I cried all the way to the hospital and wore sunglasses while I checked in so no one could see my ridiculous tears. And when we drove down the street three days later, the first thing I saw were the signs on the black front door welcoming Elijah Brock to his home

Our daughter and son now share bunk beds in the guest room and so there is no guest room. There is no half bath. No laundry room. And we'd like to build a porch and put up crown molding and re-tile the master bath. Friends ask us how long will you stay? Will you move when the kids get a little older? Won't you need more space?

For now the answer is, we'll stay as long as we can and the kids will continue to share rooms and I'll fold laundry in the garage. Because this place is long on memories and this place is rich in love. The feeling of belonging is thick in the air.

This house is home.

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