Monthly Archives: July 2010

Sweet Summer Strawberries

When we moved into our house three summers ago, we were pleasantly surprised to find a small strawberry patch growing in the side yard. Mmmm, strawberries. We harvested a few handfuls of berries that year and thought we were in heavan. Each year though it has only gotten better and better.

This year, I was sure the harvest would be slim because of the cold, rainy spring and early summer we had here in Oregon. I’m sure glad I was wrong! Once it got warm and sunny a few weeks ago, the berries went nuts! Each day for the past couple weeks we’ve been able to go out to patch and pick a few handful – enough for snacking and tasty little after-dinner treat!

Nothing beats a little cup of fresh, sweet strawberries straight out of the garden with a scoop of homemade whip cream. My sister was in town a few weeks ago and questioned why we make whip cream every night when you can just buy a can of it. Why? Are you kidding? Have you ever tasted fresh whip cream? Well, now she has!

Making whip cream is super easy and only takes about 2 minutes. Here’s what I do:

First, I put the metal bowl from my KitchenAid mixer into the freezer for a few minutes to get it nice and cold. It’s important to keep the bowl that you’ll be using super cold – makes the whipping cream stiffer.

After the bowl is cold, I pour 1/2 pint (about a cup) of whipping cream or heavy whipping cream into the bowl. Add about 1/8 cup of powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of vanilla to the cream. Beat the cream on the highest setting for approximately 1 1/2 minutes until soft peaks form. Done.

If you want to add a little extra flavor, add a little cinnamon to the cream. Mmm, that’s good too!

But alas, I think there’s only a couple more days worth of desserts. I’ll miss you strawberries. See you again next year!

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Finally, After Three Years…A Headboard

Yes, it’s taken me three years to make a headboard for our master bedroom. Yes, I had this same idea for a headboard for three years. Yes, I’m just that lazy or just that much of a procrastinator. Yes, it’s done and I love it.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just take way too long to make a decision about something. Like this silly headboard. I kept thinking that the perfect headboard, at the perfect price, was going to jump out at me. I found lots of headboards that I really liked but never pulled the trigger on buying them because I kept thinking I’d find one similar at a better price.

My husband and I agreed that we wanted an upholstered headboard. I’ve seen lots of tutorials on how to make them, but they have all required me to go to the hardware store and get a piece of plywood cut to order and then create a seemingly complicated system for hanging it on the wall. I like simple. The simpler, the better.

So last week I was in Michaels cruising around – without the kids – and went into the painting canvas aisle. I like to buy canvases just in case I ever feel crafty and decide to start creating collage art (I’ve done one and want to do more, but you know how it is). So while I was looking at the big canvases, I had a thought. “Alyse,” I said, “why don’t you buy three big canvases, wrap batting and fabric around them and hang them up as a headboard.” Why didn’t I think of that before? No need to cut plywood, no need to do a fancy hanging system.

Fabric is from the Revive collection by Art Gallery Fabrics

So that’s what I did. I bought three 24″ x 30″ canvases and a package of quilt batting for about $43 (the canvases were 50% off!). When I got home, I went into my stash of fabric and found a piece that was big enough to cover the three panels and that coordinated with our purple wall. I’m actually surprised that I had enough of this fabric to do the job, but I guess I was waiting for the right project to use it.

I cut out pieces of fabric and batting that were about 3 inches larger than the canvases on all sides. Used a staple gun to attach the material to the canvases and then screwed two picture hanging hooks into each panel. Easy.

The toughest part was making sure the nails for the panels were level. So if you decide to do this, just be sure you have a good level handy.

I can’t believe it took me three years to do this. It’s such a relief to have this project crossed off the list!

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Filed under craft, decorating, project, style