No nautical themed room is complete without shells.
Here is a very private look into my home. The before picture is a picture of the house before we bought it. I have said repeatedly that the house was stuck in the 80’s. Continue reading “Family Room Makeover – part 1 Lighting”
When Gary was about three he received a solid wood dresser. Well, it has been 12 years and it is showing a bit of wear. The dresser itself was in good condition but the exterior (especially the top) had experienced the love of a growing boy. I decided to re-finish it to bring it back to life and hopefully extend its life another 12 years.
Do you ever come across an idea and think “WOW, that would make my life a lot easier”. That is exactly what happened to me. Several times on Pinterest I have seen that you can use a can opener to open plastic packaging. So I decided to give it a try.
For Christmas I received a stand for my GPS, so I got out my NEW can opener (yes, I am one of those crazy people who use a manual can opener). I began on the middle of the right side of the package. The can opener managed to make a few dents, but was not cutting the plastic.
Since that was not working I decided to try the top left corner and see if starting on a corner made any difference. This time I was able to cut a small strip off of the package, but it did not cut the seal. The next thing I know the can opener broke and fell to the floor in several pieces.
The end result was an unopened package and a broken can opener. Please do not try this at home! It was a waste of my time, energy and money. I will stick with using my heavy scissors next time I need to open anything.
Regardless of age, everyone needs birthday cake. Whether you purchase an overpriced cake from a specialty bakery, or go for the plain box mix and canned frosting, a cake is a must.
Recently I spent a few weeks with my father in Alabama to help him recover from rotator cuff surgery. Two days after surgery he celebrated his birthday, so a cake was needed. Usually I make a semi-homemade cake with homemade frosting. However, my father is a diabetic so most cakes are out of the question. So I started looking for options. I found that Pillsbury now has a sugar-free cake and frosting. Being a bachelor for many year my dad is not too picky, and it was just the two of us we decided to give it a try.
For the record I do not usually eat anything that is sugar-free. I do not tolerate aspartame (it triggers my migraine headaches) and I have heard so many risk associated with artificial sweeteners so I try to avoid them when possible. I realize that all artificial sweeteners are an acquired taste that I do not have. So that is important to note ahead of time. Both of these contain Splenda.
CAKE: You make this cake like you would any other mix. Add oil, water and eggs and bake. Before I baked the cake I tasted the batter. Before anyone says anything, yes I know that it contained raw eggs, but I wanted to be prepared for how it would turn out. There was a slight after taste before baking, but I did not notice it after it cooked. I baked the batter in two 8 inch pans and noticed that they did not rise as much as usual. The taste was pretty good (not as good as my usual cake) but it was okay. Overall, I would give it a grade of B-. If I needed another “sugar-free” cake I would make it again.
FROSTING: What goes better with yellow cake than chocolate icing. This stuff was so thick there was no way I could but it on the sides without tearing the cake apart. So I decided to only put a thin layer between the two layers and a generous amount on top. After tasting it I was glad I had not put more the cake. For this was the worst frosting I have ever tasted. Besides not being as sweet as regular frosting, it had a heavy, taste. Spreading the frosting was impossible. If I had to give it a grade, it would definitely be an F. I will not be buying this stuff again. My dad and I both ended up scraping as much off as we could and just eating the cake.
Thankfully I will not be needing any more sugar-free cakes for a while.