Monday, September 9, 2013


Helllllloooooo, Birdies! I hope everyone had a beautiful and fun filled weekend! :-) Today, I thought I'd quickly share with you a trick I have been using for a few years now. I love to shred my own cheese but I detest how,after time, it can all stick together. Ugh! Do you hate that too or am I the only one?

I choose to shred my own cheese because:

* Blocks of Cheese Are Typically Cheaper Than Pre-Shredded
* You Get More Cheese Out of a Whole Block Than a Bag
* Fresh Cheese Melts Better and really...isn't that the point? ;-)

 So how does one get the best of both worlds? The yummy cheese minus the icky extras? I'll show you....

1. Start out with a big block of all natural cheese. This particular hunk was quite huge so I cut mine in half to make it easier to shred.

2. Pull out a glass container and sprinkle in the tiniest bit of all natural, organic flour or powdered milk. Close the lid and shake so the flour/milk dusts the sides. Open the lid and pour out any excess flour, set aside.

I ended up only using about a quarter of this flour. 
3. Get to shredding! Once shredded, fill the container layer by layer. In between each layer, sprinkle in teeny-weeny (yeah, just typed that) amounts of the same flour or powdered milk. Then SHAKE it up and you're done!!!

After a minute or two of putting in some elbow grease, you end up with freshly shredded, delicious cheese. I don't think I will ever go back to the pre-bagged alternative since I've been doing this. Just so you know, the flour does not add any texture or additional flavor to the cheese (especially if used sparingly.)

The batch pictured is only about a half a block of cheese and should last for quite some time. I just wrapped the other half and popped it back in the freezer. You can do the same. Simply defrost when ready then shred away!

I hope you find this tip helpful and if you would like to see more posts like this in the future, please comment below!

What kind of cheese do you normally buy? Do you think you will try this method? 

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Friday, September 6, 2013

2013 Favorites: August Edition

Heyyyyyy Birdies!!! Can you even believe it is September?? It seems like summer just started last week. Believe me! I am not complaining. This means I am just that much closer to Fall (one of my fave's) and even more importantly...{drum roll please} CHRISTMAS!!!! Ooooh, even typing that gave me chills. But before I let myself get carried away with seasonal excitement, I thought I would introduce you to something new I am wanting to try. I thought it might be fun to do a monthly favorites list. I am a YouTube junkie and "Favorites" are always some of my top videos to watch. Typically it is the internet beauty guru's that go over their favorite beauty or beauty related items from each month. For my favorites, I want to be a little more broad. Beauty products, home products, websites, recipes, clothes, moments, books, songs...really, anything that made an impression on me. Take a look! :-)

1. FAVORITE BEAUTY PRODUCTe.l.f. Liquid Liner 

Being an eyeliner snob, I wasn't sure if I would care for this inexpensive alternative compared to my pricier fave's. For being only $1 (yeah....ONE DOLLAR), this liner packs quite a punch. Traditional black is my go to and e.l.f. black in #4203 does not disappoint. It has great color pay off and stays on all day long. It is very easy to apply as well! The only thing I don't love is that it tends to be a bit messy during application. I find random specks on my hand after putting it on but I can live with it for the price. Nothing a little coconut oil on a Q-tip can't fix. Don't get me wrong, I love my fancy schmancy gel liners but through August this guy was my go-to and most likely will be through September. They have some other colors which look appealing for fall so I am definitely trying them. Sidenote: You can find e.l.f. products at Target, Christmas Tree Shoppes, and online. If you know of another place to purchase this brand, let me know in the comments. :-)

2. FAVORITE BOOK: 31 Days to Clean: Having a Martha House the Mary Way by Sarah Mae

I mentioned the 31 Days to Clean in this post and let me tell ya! I LOVE this book. Sarah Mae, the author, encourages the reader to clean....but not just clean. She implores that we look inside and ask why we clean, why we want a tidy home. The daily lessons are short and sweet but that is not to say they don't get right to the heart of the matter. The verses Sarah shares along with her own personal stories really touched me and I highly recommend this book to anyone for any reason. Whether you want a monthly cleaning schedule, to simply read a good book, or to have your spirit uplifted, I would say to download this e-book. You can click on the title or the picture to pull up the web link or you can download it directly to your Kindle (or most e-readers) by going to the "Store." Also, be sure to check out her blog for more tips!

3. FAVORITE VERSE: Jeremiah 31:25

"For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul." 

So simple but so beautifully strong. You may read this as being in the past tense but for me I see it as eternal.....this verse states what God has done, what He is doing, and what He will do. Not to say that I or my family are exclusive in our struggles, we are not, but we have really gone through a lot. The past 2 years especially have been so full of ups and downs....sometimes more downs than anything else but through it all God has satiated our weary souls. He has replenished us. He has renewed our strength and shown us new grace every morning. Through His mercy and love, He has made us able to get through the challenges with smiles on our faces and joy in our hearts. Although there have been days where the heaviness of the situations have seemed overwhelming and heart breaking, the Holy Spirit sweeps in and causes us to sing our Savior's praises. Because of His replenishment, we have been able to see even more how good God truly is. If you are going through a time that seems you don't know how you can move forward, please know that God loves you and is ready to lift that burden. He wants to replenish your sorrowful soul and fill you with joy.

4. FAVORITE YOU-TUBER: Louise from Sprinkle of Glitter 

I may not do this category every month because Louise may always top the list. Lou is from England, has an adorable family, fun fashion & beauty style, and a personality that definitely sparkles! She has a main channel called "Sprinkle of Glitter" and a vlog channel called "Sprinkle of Chatter." I love both but am partial to the Chatter channel. It is fun to see how things are so different or so similar in other parts of the world. Louise is one of my favorites because she is so open, fun, and encouraging. I feel a real kinship to her somehow like if she lived in my neck of the woods we would probably be b.f.f. (Marie, you lucky-international bff-duck!) It is amazing how this person I have never met can motivate me to look on the bright side or try things, even if I feel a bit nervous to do so. She is a curvier girl and about a month ago she did a "look book" video where she modeled various outfits that she loved or felt were flattering for her body type. She looked great and made me realize that I can still look good even if I am not a perfect size. Please, please check her YT channels and blog out. You will not regret letting this sunshiney soul into your life! And if you don't believe me that you will like her, check out this video of her too-cute-for-words-daughter dancing. ADORABLE!

5. FAVORITE MOMENT: Family Trip To Lake Michigan

Unexpectedly my mom called, with an excitement in her voice that I haven't heard in a while, that my cousin Rob was letting us stay in his lake house for Labor Day weekend! This was a hugely kind and generous thing he did. Once I heard the news, I instantly sent a text asking for that weekend off and prayed that it would work out. It did and soon enough we were Lake Michigan bound! The weather may not have been perfect for our stay but I cannot complain because what the weekend provided wasn't based on temps and storm clouds alone. My family and I were able to completely rest. We slept like babies, ate like kings (if kings eat turkey burgers, that is), and lounged around like we didn't have a care in the world.

These are just a few of the pics I snapped on my cell phone. My dad was really the photographer of the weekend so I will have to ask for a some of his photos so I can share them with you!

August of 2013: More than just make-up. Definitely full of heart. Of course so much more happened: surprise visit from niece + nephew, trips to Cincinnati, weddings,a surprise baby shower then about a day later one of my besties had twins!! All in all, a good month. How was yours??

I'm sorry this was a rather long post. If any of you would like my favorites but in vlog form, please let me know! Oh! And I would LOVE if you would share with me what some of your favorites from August were. Share via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and of course here!!

Thanks for reading!! HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND!!!
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