Creative on the Cheap…

DSC_0103This super cute iron chair was picked up at a garage sale for $5 a few weeks ago, but I wasn’t sure exactly what to do with it.  Then, as I was on a Chloe the Wayward Chicken hunt (didn’t find her) I spied some moss growing in the yard.  I’ve seen planters on Pinterest that people used moss from their own yards so I though, why not.  I pulled up big pieces so I could just place it in the planter part of the chair.  I had to use a few patch pieces, but nothing major.

DSC_0104

Then I filled it with some of my homemade potting soil (compost, vermiculite, peat moss and sometimes garden soil).  I think I’ll fill this one with some ivy that I have growing down the side yard path.

I’m just so giddy about this.

Advertisements

Making a Garden Trellis

WP_20150604_17_38_48_Pro

When we moved I left most of my garden trellis’ at the old house, I’m still kicking myself for that.  At the end of summer I’ll pick some up when they go on deep discount, but for now I either pay full price or get creative.  Today I got creative and made my own.  The trellis I made is definitely nothing fancy, but it does the trick, was super easy to make and didn’t cost much.

WP_20150604_17_31_26_Pro WP_20150604_17_43_32_Pro

I used these 6 foot stakes, package of 5 but I only used 4, some 1 1/2″ nails, a hammer and a hand saw.  I could have pulled out my electric saw but these are so small it just didn’t seem worth the effort.

WP_20150604_17_31_02_Pro

I did not measure anything, I simply laid three stakes on the ground and eyeballed the distance between.  Next I took the fourth stake and laid it horizontally across the three to get a measurement as to how long it needed to be.  I made a tick mark using a nail, then used the hand saw to cut it. I used the first rung as a guide for the other four.  Next I spaced them, again eyeballing it, then nailed them into place.  Where each rung sits over the center stake I used two nails to make it a little sturdier.  In total this took about 15 minutes, and that’s with the help of the twinadoes….  I think I’m going to make more of these, some larger.

Chicken Strips

WP_20150601_19_16_06_ProI won’t lie, I’ve given my kids those “nuggets” that are so unhealthy, judge away… However, the majority of the time I make chicken strips at home.  They are super easy and the kids like them, so that’s a win in my book.  The key to these is using panko rather than regular bread crumbs.  That extra crunch the panko gives is just so delightful.

For the Recipe:

2 chicken breasts, but into strips

1 1/2 c. panko

2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. pepper

1 egg

1/4 c. milk or water

Oil for frying, you are not deep frying so only enough to cook one side of the strip at a time

Mix the panko, salt and pepper on a paper plate (easy clean-up).  In a bowl large enough to dip the chicken strips beat the egg and milk/water.  Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat (you don’t want it too hot or they will burn), dip the strips in the egg then coat in the seasoned panko.  Be sure the strip is completely coated in the panko, sometimes you have to pat it down a bit.  Carefully place the coated strips in the pan, but do not overcrowd or they will steam and not get crunchy.  Cook each side until it gets golden brown.  Serve alone or with whatever dipping sauce you like.

Enjoy!

Easy Peasy Strawberry Shortcakes

WP_20150602_20_50_27_Pro 1

Lately I’ve been a little lazy when it comes to cooking.  Most of my time is spent gardening or trying to get projects done in the house, so spending hours on a meal isn’t happening.  So when I can find a shortcut that produces great results, why not?  For these shortcakes I used pancake mix, super easy and quick, and really yummy.  You could easily substitute your favorite fruit, not sure why everyone is so stuck on just using strawberries with shortcakes….  You can add sugar to this recipe if you want a sweeter shortcake, but I find it perfect when paired with sweet fruit.

For the Recipe:

2 1/3 c. pancake mix

3 tbsp. melted butter

1/2 c. milk

Preheat oven to 425.  Mix all the ingredients until they come together.  Flatten out to a rectangle about 3/4″ thick, cut into 6 square (or whatever shape you want).  Place on ungreased baking sheet and cook 12-14 minutes, or until lightly colored.  Serve with your fruit of choice topped with whipped cream.

Enjoy!