Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Frost Family First: Christmas Cards!

Well, I couldn't resist the lure of free Christmas cards from Shutterfly. I love the idea of sending out Christmas cards (after convincing myself that maybe I actually do have people to send them to) but never am able to or want to shell out the dough. So what ends up happening: No Christmas cards. Until this year!

Shutterfly has such a cute variety of Christmas Photo Cards that I don't know which ones I'll end up choosing. I just hope that I have a cute enough picture of the family to go with the designs...

Last Christmas, my brother-in-law and his wife made a photo wall calendar for my in-laws. It has been so fun to have up all year long. I've been wanting to make one for myself and have actually already started looking into them from Shutterfly's website. One of the options that I think is really fun is that you not only can put a reminder on the day like December 28 being "Andrew and Victoria's Anniversary" but could put a wedding picture with both of our beautiful faces on that space on the calendar!

I did do a birth announcement for Nathaniel using Shutterfly last year. They were fun to pass out and give to people. My work had it hanging on the teacher's lounge door for months. After I quit teaching and started staying home, someone in the school threw it in the garbage. A few months later, I went back to visit my 1st grade team and Lori, one of my co-workers, had dug it out of the trash and saved it because she thought it was a shame to throw a cute announcement away! The best part was sending a bit of our joy to people out on the east coast who weren't able to meet the boy. Next baby I'll be looking through the options of birth announcements again!

So anyway, I'm excited. If you want one let me know and I'll send you one because the Frost's are sending out Christmas invites compliments of Shutterfly. Thanks Shutterfly! Go check it out for yourself, but the deadline to apply is the 10th!

This is a really weird picture that does not do it justice. The spread that was actually in the Rachael Ray magazine (I know, two recipes in a row) was very pretty. This was kind of a fun dish to make, had lots of good stuff in it and was just different, which is nice sometimes.
This makes one pie pan full.
2/3 cup rice
3 Tbl olive oil
1/4 c grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 onion finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced (I didn't have any when I made this, so I used pieces of tomato)
2 cloves garlic, finely hopped
One 10 ounce package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
2 tsp finely chopped rosemary
1 store-bought rotisserie chicken cut into cubes (I used cooked shredded chicken breast that I have stored in my freezer)
9 ounces cheddar cheese (2 1/4 cups)
1. Preheat the oven to 425. In a small saucepan, combine the rice with 1 1/3 cups water. Cover and simmer over med-high heat until water is absorbed. About 16 minutes. Let cool. (I cooked rice in the rice cooker earlier that morning and saved it for when I was making this recipe for dinner!)
2. Brush the sides of a 9-in pie pan with 1 Tbl olive oil. In a medium bowl, combine the cooled rice, parmesan cheese, egg and a pinch of pepper. Using lightly oiled fingers or a rubber spatula, press the rice mixture evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate. Bake for 10 min. Set aside to cool.
3. In a large, heavy skillet, heat the remaining 2 Tbl olive oil over med heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and garlic and cook, stirring occassionally, until the vegetables are golden- 15-20 minutes. Stir in the spinach and rosemary, season with salt and pepper and cook for 5 min. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Stir in the chicken and 1 cup of cheddar cheese..
4. Lower the oven to 375. Fill the crust with the chicken-vegetable filling, leaving a 1-inch border at the top of the crust. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1 1/4 cups of cheddar cheese. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling, about 30 minutes.

Chicken Satay Noodle Soup

Rachael Ray says that this serves 4. Thinking it really did, I decided to just make it for the 4 servings and have Andrew and I eat it once for dinner and then once for lunch the next day as left overs. We've eaten it for dinner and I've eaten it twice for lunch and there is still TONS of soup left. So my advice is that if you don't have a large crowd to feed, half this recipe for sure!
That being said, this was kind of a fun and different kind of dinner. I would definitely not forget the toppings at the end (cilantro, peanuts, green onions and lime) since I felt like they totally made the meal.
1/2 lb whole wheat pasta
2 Tbl vegetable oil
3/4 lb chicken, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbl tamari (dark soy) *I used regular soy since I didn't have any
1/4 cup Thai red curry paste
2 Tbl tomato paste
6 cups chicken broth
One 1-inch piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced
1/2 head napa or savoy cabbage, shredded *I only had regular cabbage and it worked fine
1/2 cup apple joice
1 cup bean sprouts
1/4 cup chopped peanuts
green onions thinly sliced
1 Tbl chopped cilantro
Lime wedges
1. Bring a large pot of water to boil, salt it, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain
2. Meanwhile, in a soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the chicken and garlic and cook, stirring until the chicken is opaque, about 5 min. Transfer to a plate.
3. Add the peanut butter, tamari, curry paste and tomato paste to the pot and stir. Increase the heat to meduium-high and whisk in the chicken broth; add the ginger. Bring to a boil, then stir in the cabbage and cook until wilted, about 2 minutes. Return the chicken to the pot and stir in the apple juice.
4. Divide the pasta among 4 bowls. Ladle the soup over the pasta. Top with the bean sprouts, peanuts, green onions and cilantro. serve with the lime wedges.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Broccoli Salad

So I've never actually posted on this blog...and it doesn't look like anyone else has used it for a while, but I made broccoli salad for Thanksgiving this year and Patrick and I loved it. I think other people did too so I thought I'd post it!

Sorry the picture is huge. I can't get it any smaller.

1 head broccoli
6 to 8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup raisins, optional
8 ounces sharp Cheddar, cut into very small chunks
1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes

1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

I got this recipe from Paula Deen. Thanks Paula!

When I made it we actually put in more broccoli than it called for. We substituted craisins for the raisins, left out the tomatoes because my husband and I don't like them, and used less cheese than it called for. Also, we did not use all of the dressing.

When I've had this salad other places I've seen people put sunflower seeds or some kind of sliced nut (almonds maybe?) in it as well which is pretty good.


Friday, September 3, 2010

Chutney Curried Chicken with Yogurt Sauce

No, I haven't forgotten about this blog. I've just been really, really bad at putting things on it. I have been cooking, just not taking pictures of what I make!

The name of this recipe would not have caught my eye and I would have moved on in my Crock Pot book. However, the picture in the book looked yummy and I did have a mango sitting in my fruit bowl that needed to be used. So I tried it and it was good! Andrew said it was fun. I'll be making it again. Plus, it's a crockpot dinner- I love those!

(I can't get this one to not be flipped sidways, sorry)

1 container (6-8 oz) plain low-fat yogurt
2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper (I didn't have, so I used red pepper flakes)
4 bone in chicken breast halves, skin removed (2 lbs. about) (I used boneless skinless I think)
1 small onion, sliced
1/3 cup mango chutney (chop large pieces of mango if you don't have chutney)
1 Tbl. lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbl. cornstarch
2 Tbl. water
3 cups cooked linguini or lo mein noodles
Optional Toppings: chopped cilantro chopped peanuts, toasted coconut

1. Place yogurt in paper-towel-lined strainer over a bowl. Drain in refrigerator until serving time.

2. Combine curry powder, garlic salt and red pepper; sprinkle over chicken. Place onion in crock pot; top with chicken. Combine chutney, lime juice and garlic; spoon over chicken. Cover; cook on LOW 5 or 6 hours or on HIGH 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until chicken is tender.

3. With slotted spoon, transfer chicken to serving platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Turn crock pot cooker to High. Combine cornstartch with water until smooth. Stir into cooking liquid. Cover; cook 15 minutes or until thickened. Spoon sauce over chicken; serve over linguini. Top with thickened yogurt and garnish as desired.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Don't you wish your sister was cool like mine?

(First, make sure you sing the title like "Don't you wish your girlfriend was hot like mine?" Not even positive that's how it goes. But that's how I sing it.)

So my sister is amazing. She made this all by herself:

How cool is that? I love the color. Tiffany's blue. Here are some more shots.

Of course Elinor loves it. She thinks it's so cool. She walks around saying, "Courtney made me this. It's a cool kitchen."

She got the plans from If you haven't heard of the site, she is a stay at home mom who couldn't afford all the awesome yet expensive furniture/kids stuff that she wanted. So she figured it out. She takes ideas from Pottery Barn and such and figures out how to make replicas (hence the knock off wood name). Then she posts the plans so others can make it. Here is the specific link for the kitchen:

Super cute! Here are some tips. She found IKEA coasters at a yard sale for the burners. The knobs for the oven are radio knobs from RadioShak. The handle for the oven is a cabinet pull from IKEA. The fridge handles are also from IKEA-they are towel racks! Courtney got the sink faucet from an RV shop (she gets a discount). The sink basin was a $2 D.I. bowl. Look around and be creative!

Here is my creative contribution to the project-felt food! I am still working on it. So far I have made one doughnut, five chocolate chip cookies, and four pieces of bread. Apparently we love carbs at our house. And yes, those few items really took me a long time. I'm still learning how to sew. And each of these foods had a pretty tricky element. Here is a link to get you started:

Thanks Court! It's AWESOME!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Another Giveaway

I want to remember this giveaway because I may just ask for one of these for my birthday or Christmas. I would get one of the charms with Nathaniel's name on it and add on for other babes. Check out the giveaway at Tater Tots and Jello!

Monday, July 19, 2010

DownEast Giveaway!

I love DownEast Outfitters. I actually went shopping there this weekend with Kari and bought two really cute skirts. And now, they're having a GIVEAWAY on Tatertots and Jello (check out the side bar for the link). Go check it out! I'd love to win!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Roman Blinds

I finally got E's roman shade up! It turned out very cute (as long as you don't notice that it is not sitting quite straight). I used a tutorial in an old Sunset drapery book my mom has. You can tell the book was made in the 70's! I didn't want to type up all the directions (there are a lot) so I am linking to a lady who already did.

A few things:

Her blinds are pretty small so she only use 2 columns of rings. I suggest 3-4 columns.

I did not use brass rings. If you are only making one shade, individual rings are way cheaper and look more professional. If you are making many shades, get the ring tape. It's worth the money when you don't want to spend literally HOURS sewing on each individual ring.

I didn't use a metal rod. I used a dowel. So much cheaper.

Her directions are a little different. Mine has some crazy hems going on. I think mine look better but hers look loads easier. Plus, no one sees the back (usually)!

I am no seamstress (although I am a lot better than I was last week) and mine turned out pretty good. Don't be intimidated! BUT, do be prepared to spend more than you think. For all my shades (I did one in E's room and I am doing 4 for the living room/kitchen area) it would have been cheaper to buy them. Not as cute, but cheaper. And that is why I did it. Oh well. At least they are snazzy.

So without further ado, I give you my first roman shade! (And first REAL sewing all by myself, with only 1 use of the seam ripper):

(sorry about the picture quality)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Teacher-Approved Playdough

This is the playdough recipe I use for my kindergartners. I made it this morning for Elinor and she loves it.

2 cups flour
1 cup salt
2 TBSP vegetable oil
4 tsp cream of tarter
2 cups water
Food coloring of choice

Place all ingredients in medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and forms a ball (this only takes a minute or two).

Remove from pan and cool on counter.

When cool (I don't let it completely cool, but mostly), knead for 1 minute. Store in air tight container.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Bountiful Baskets Dinner

Last night I used a bunch of my produce from my bountiful basket. I've been doing bountiful baskets for quite awhile now and love it. Here's what I made:

I used Jacque's technique for the pork chops. First you bread the pork chops however you want. I rinsed and dried my chops. Then I dredged them in flour and dipped in egg. For my breading, I used panko bread crumbs mixed with garlic salt and crushed rosemary. I love the taste of rosemary but Brad hates the leaves so I buy crushed. Brown the pork chops in a little hot oil in a large skillet with a lid. Add liquid (I used a little apple juice and the rest water), cover, and steam until the pork chops are done. I tend to buy the thick chops so it takes about 45 minutes. I had to add quite a bit of liquid. The apple juice carmelized and added a lot of flavor. For the last ten minutes (about) I added some thick slices of apples (peeled and cored). I add the apples right on top of the chops so they add moisture but don't burn. Brad LOVES these pork chops. They are yummy.

I used our red potatoes to make a mash. I love red mashed potatoes. One of my favorite foods. When I make red mashed potatoes, I like to leave some bite sized pieces. I add the typical butter and milk (warmed-so important!). Then I like to add garlic salt and a little sour cream. Not super healthy but super tasty!

The green beans were our favorite! I simply boiled them until they were tendercrisp. I then added a touch of olive oil and a pinch of garlic salt (we like garlic, can you tell?!).

Overall it was a fresh, nice meal! I probably will save it for a Sunday next time, though. My kids get crazy at dinner-making time!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes-POST EDIT

Um, the title says it all. These are DELISH! If you like chocolate and peanut butter, that is. And according to my mom, people who don't are crazy. Disclaimer: my mom doesn't actually think you are crazy. At least not for that. Next time I will coarsely chop some peanut butter cups and use that instead of chocolate chips.

The cupcakes are whatever chocolate recipe/cake mix you like. For the frosting, I used this recipe from all recipes.

So great! And the best part is, people think you are fancy and spent a lot of time on them, but they are SO easy!

**I made these for Drew's birthday party and dinner with Laura and Kart. I made them with a sub-par cake mix. They are definitely way, way better with devil's food or a really good chocolate cake.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Chicken Soup North African Style

This is one if not THE favorite new recipe I've made since I started my cooking adventure. It comes from The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook. It did take a little while to make, but I think it is well worth the effort. Also, the cookbook marks it as a "Fit to Eat" recipe, so it should be a healthy one as well as tasty. (Sorry, no picture of finished product.)


  • 3 Medium Carrots

  • 2 Whole Chicken Breasts, split, bone in, Skin removed

  • 1 Leek, white and pale-green parts, quartered lengthwise, well-washed

  • 1 Celery Stalk, strings removed, cut into 1 inch lengths

  • 3 Sprigs Fresh Flat-Leaf Parsley

  • 2 Sprigs Fresh Thyme

  • 2 Dried Bay Leaves

  • 1 1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt

  • 1/4 tsp. Freshly Ground Pepper

  • 3 Whole Canned Tomatoes, drained, seeded, and quartered

  • 1 tsp. Ground Cumin

  • 1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger

  • 1 C. Diced Butternut Squash

  • 1 C. Quick Cooking Couscous

  • 1 Jalapeno Pepper, seeds and ribs removed, minced

  • 1/3 C. Finely Chopped Cilantro Leaves, plus sprigs for garnish

  • 2 small zucchini, seeded, cut into 1/4 inch dice

  • 1/2 C. Cooked or Canned Chickpeas, drained

  • 2 limes, cut into wedges

1. Halve 1 carrot; place in stockpot. Add chicken, 2 quarts water, leek, celery, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, and 1 tsp. salt. Cover; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer, uncovered, 1 hour; skim off any foam. Remove chicken. Strain through a fine sieve or cheesecloth-lined strainer into a bowl. Discard solids, reserving meat. Slice chicken into 1/2 inch-thick strips, and set aside.

2. Rinse pot; add stock. Set over medium-low heat; add pepper. Dice remaining carrots. Add carrots, tomatoes, cumin, ginger, and squash; simmer over medium heat until tender, about 25 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, bring 1 cup water to a boil in a saucepan. Add couscous and remaining salt. Cover; remove from heat. Let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff. Stir in jalapeno and cilantro.

4. Add zucchini and chickpeas; cook until tender, 5 minutes. Add chicken; simmer 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.Place couscous in bowls, add soup; add cilantro sprigs and lime wedges. serve hot.

This is one recipe where I would use the fresh herbs where it says fresh. We made it twice and the second time I used dried herbs. I could taste the difference. Fresh was definitely best. I hope you like it as much as we did. Man! was it good.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Oh Sweet Sadie Roundup

I was lucky enough to attend the Oh Sweet Sadie Academy a few weekends ago. I am only getting around to blogging about it! It was so much fun. I'm really glad I got to go. Here's what I learned how to make:

Tissue Paper Poms:
These look better in person. This will be super fun for parties and such.

Dinosaur Tail:
Elinor looks very cute running around with a little tail!

Ruffle Necklace:
Not in love with this.

Cake Decorating by The Sweet Tooth Fairy:
I didn't learn much but it was still fun. Plus we got to take a bunch of cupcakes home!

Handmade Doll:
I am in love with this. It is definitely NOT perfect, but it is super cute! If only I had a sewing machine I could make lots more!

Mother Bird Necklace:
This is cute. (Side note: this is not my actual necklace. Mine did not turn out quite this cute). I haven't worn it yet but I probably will.

Peanut Butter Cups:

Not a great picture but these were very tasty. These are not something I would make on a regular basis, but maybe for a special occasion.

I need to start saving my pennies for the next Academy. It was SO much fun plus I feel like I learned some great skills.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Black Bean and Mango Salsa

The picture is coming. But trust me, this salsa is beautiful. Andrew can't eat all the fresh stuff in it but he said it was pretty and it smelled good, too.

We had lots of mangoes come in this week's Bountiful Basket. Apparently, Rosemary, Corbin and Brad won't eat them. Pat and Alisha didn't want to take them because they are from Mexico and not the Philippines (Pat went on his mission there and said they are really good there and no where else holds a candle to it). So, I'm trying to be creative in my usage of mangoes.

I doubled the recipe and made some of this Black Bean and Mango Salsa today. I made some as a thank you for someone in the ward, some for a neighbor and the rest for me. I think it is really tasty!

But warning on this recipe: It is a fresh salsa. It contains mangoes. If you're not a fan of either- move along to another recipe.

Black Bean and Mango Salsa
(from the America's Test Kitchen cookbook)

1 (15.5 oz) can black beans, rinsed
1 mango, peeled, pitted and chopped fine (look up how to chop one if you've never done it)
1/2 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and chopped fine
1/4 cup minced red onion
1/4 cup pineapple juice
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1/2 jalapeno chile, stemmed, seeded and minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
salt and pepper

*Note: I used 3 mangoes in my doubled salsa since I think my mangoes were a little small. I'd probably use 2 mangoes in the regular recipe next time I make it.

Mix all of the ingredients together and season with sugar, salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest to blend flavors- about 10 minutes. Let drain in a fine-mesh strainer before serving. (I didn't wait that long, I started eating it out of the bowl with all the juice still at the bottom!)

Toy Chest, part 3: The Big Reveal

I'm done! Overall I love it. There are a few changes I would make if I was doing it again. Here she is!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

almost done...

Sorry about the poor quality of the photo. I'm not sure where our camera is and the iphone, although amazing, does not have a flash or any other functions for that matter.

Here is the toy chest almost done.

All that I have to do now is wait for 3 days or so for the paint to really harden and then put it back together. I am SO excited! I'm not in love with how the birds turned out, but I like the color. (In this picture I hadn't put the birds on yet).

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Conversation Cupcakes

These cupcakes are in my favorite cupcake book. They are an idea for Valentine's Day. I thought it would be cute for Drew who is graduating from grad school (yay!).

I wish I had time to fill these a la hostess style (but much better).

The frosting is a ganache glaze. It was good, but not chocolately enough for me. Next time I will make the non-shiny version of the glaze. It has more chocolate. The nice thing about the glaze is you just dip the cupcakes in. Super easy.

You can find the recipe here.

One thing that was weird was the glaze was a light-brown-with-chocolate-flecks color. Not what I expected. But then as it dried, the glaze darkened. So don't be stressed out by the strangeness of the color!

The writing is melted white chocolate in either a baggie or a paper cornet.

They are definitely fun!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Old Time Beef Stew

Old Time Beef Stew

2 pounds beef stew meat, cut in 1 1/2-inch cubes (I usually only use 1 pound-next time I think I will use even less)
2 tablespoons shortening (I use olive oil)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic
1 medium onion, sliced
1 or 2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Dash ground allspice or cloves
6 carrots, pared and quartered
4 potatoes, pared and quartered
1 pound small white onions (I usually omit)
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

In Dutch oven, thoroughly brown meat in 2 tablespoons hot shortening, turning often. Add 2 cups hot water and next 9 ingredients.

(sometimes I get a little frazzled while cooking so I like to have everything all ready to go. Then it's all about dumping in!)

Cover; simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally to keep from sticking.

Remove bay leaves and garlic.

Add vegetables. Cover and cook 30 to 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

Slowly blend 1/3 cup cold water into the 3 tablespoons flour.

Stir slowly into hot stew mixture.

Cook and stir till bubbly. Cook and stir 3 minutes longer. Serve stew in bowls. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Meatless Monday: Lentils and Spinach

We wanted Naan bread to go with our Meatless Monday meal tonight. I did a little searching around and found this "Indian" dish on All Recipes. They suggested the Lentils and Spinach recipe be served over rice but I wanted to scoop it up onto Naan. So, I made a few little adjustments to fit my wants plus some of the suggestions left in the comments section. You'll notice the changes if you go visit the recipe and compare it with how I made it. I had fresh spinach in the fridge that I was able to use up too, which was great. It was yummy! We all liked it! I'll definitely be making it again.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, halved and sliced into 1/2 rings
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock/broth
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen spinach or 1/2- 3/4 bunch of fresh spinach
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1- 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • grated carrot
  • 1 cup cooked rice (I put 1/2 cup in the rice cooker and then added the cooked rice to the pot)
  • garlic powder and garlic salt


  1. Heat oil in a heavy pan over medium heat. Saute onion for 10 minutes or so, until it begins to turn golden. Add about 1/2 tsp. of cumin. Add minced garlic and saute for another minute or so.
  2. Add lentils and chicken broth to the saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil. Cover, lower heat, and simmer about 35-40 minutes, until lentils are soft ( this may take less time, depending on your water and the lentils).
  3. Meanwhile remove long stems from spinach and do a rough chop through (or if using frozen, cook spinach according to package directions). Add spinach, rice, salt and remaining cumin to the saucepan. Cover and simmer until all is heated, about ten minutes. Grind in plenty of pepper. I added some extra salt, garlic salt, garlic powder and cumin at the end to taste.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Sneak Peak (Toy Chest, Part 2)

This little guy and a few of his friends will soon find a home on the toy chest. Too bad the weather is so lame! I really wanted to finish the toy chest this weekend. Next week, hopefully.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Toy Chest, part 1

I've been itching to do a big project for a little while now. We don't have a dresser, so I was hoping to find a dresser to refinish. (Do I have experience refinishing furniture, you might ask? Well the answer is absolutely not! Start with a dresser? Why not?!) I stopped at a yard sale the other day and they had a toy chest for $5! I thought, "Perfect! This is way less intimidating, equally needed, will fulfill my itch for a big project, AND is only $5!" So I snatched it up!

Here are some before pictures. As you may or may not be able to tell, it needs a little TLC. BUT, just a little! It was pretty dirty. It still needs a little cleaning. And I hope Kaitlyn doesn't mind that her autograph is gone.

I think we are going to make it blue. I would like to do some sort of applique-ish something on it so it's not too plain. Any ideas? There are six panels on the front-I could do Elinor and Johnny's names and add as we go. Or some sort of picture? Seriously, any ideas?

Here's a "during" picture. And my hand is not deformed-just in an awkward position.

Last night I got the lid and front sanded. I have white paint dust everywhere (and I mean everywhere!).

Leave some suggestions! I'll post my progress!