Friday, July 29, 2011

Blueberry Jam

Being 8+ months pregnant in the dead of summer has left me with ZERO energy.  I've done very little of anything productive as of late.  But yesterday I did manage to make some blueberry jam.  I love a leisurely breakfast with Mr. Sangria on the weekends.  Usually we read the paper, have coffee and some pastry for breakfast, and catch up on The Soup.  Jams are relatively easy to make but they get such a big reaction.  Mr. Sangria thinks I've spent hours in the kitchen making him something.  Clearly that's never the case.  I proceed to tell him how great I am and then ask how many of his friends wives make homemade jams on a regular basis (we have a freezer full of strawberry and apricot jams).  The answer is none and I make him feel like he is so lucky and therefore should do something nice for me.  Like take me to dinner.  It's really a win-win situation.

I came across this jam recipe in a recent issue of Real Simple magazine.  I love that it doesn't require any canning equipment because canning equipment is a pain in the (--------) to use.  Blueberries are in peak season now so I've stocked up.  And best of all - there are only 4 ingredients.  When you use fresh ingredients you don't need a lot of other additives.

Blueberry Jam

Hands on time:  5 minutes  Total Time:  30 minutes  Makes 3 cups (which I've broken down to 5 seperate containers for future use)

5 cups blueberries (I used organic)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

In a medium saucepan, combine the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice, and salt.  Mash with a potato masher or wood spoon until the berries have released their juices.

Cook over medium-high head, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has thickened, 18 to 25 minutes.  Transfer to containers and refrigerate for up to 1 month or freeze for up to 1 year.

TIP: This recipe can also be made with two 10-ounce bags of frozen blueberries instead of fresh.  Cook the frozen berries for 2 to 3 minutes before mashing, then reduce the total cooking time to 15 to 17 minutes.

Now I need to beg Mr. Sangria to stop at the store on his way home from work to get some good bread to slather this deliciousness over tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Ruffle Embelished Cuff Bracelet

As I mentioned in an earlier post I'm busy "cleaning" out some of my closets and actually using items before going out to buy more.  I came across a bag of ribbons that I've had for over a year.  Some were purchased and others I've collected from various other objects.  I save all the ribbons that are on gift boxes, as I never know when they could come in handy.

I decided to make an easy Ruffle Embelished Cuff Bracelet.  I didn't use every item shown above but they were all great for inspiration.  The only item I had to purchase was the button which I got on sale from Joann's.

Baby Cinnamon Sangria making a cameo - you can't really see her as her baby bump is shy.

Not bad for taking scraps and turning them into glamour. 

Cinnamon Sangria

Monday, July 18, 2011

Cleaning leads to procrastination which leads to crafting

I'm supposed to be cleaning out a closet for Baby Sangria to make room for all of her clothes (she's got more clothes than I do at this point).  Her closet is currently my craft/cleaning/don't know where to put stuff closet.  So I've been slowly cleaning it out to make room for her.  I'm not one for cleaing, it's just not my thing.  Don't get me wrong, I love cleanliness but it's clutter that is my downfall.  I have lots of stuff treasures that I think, "oh, one day I can use this."  So I don't really get rid of things.  This also makes me a future prospect for the show "Hoarders".  In 20 years when you see me on that show you can say you knew me back when I was a Hoarder to Be.

Anyway, in my "cleaning" I came across some beads that I have had for quite a while.  It's been on my to-do list to make this necklace, bracelet, earring set for quite a while.  And this past weekend was the perfect weekend to do it.  Why clean when you can craft right?  I love this set because it's grey, silver, and white which pretty much goes with anything.  It can be worn day or night which is a plus in my book.

Stay tuned for more "cleaning" posts in the next few weeks!

Cinnamon Sangria