I haven’t felt like taking photos since the temperature dropped outside. I was uninspired until today; then while cleaning out the basement I found my tripod (awesome). I was certain it was gone, because I’ve actually gone on a few excavation missions to find that thing. Now I have the secret to finding lost things: open boxes!
I really feel like 2013 has been a year where I have allowed myself the freedom to grow. It has been an exciting time of exploration and experiencing new things. My plan for Ditz Savant is to continue exploring with themes such as my Wicked Wednesday posts, but to move away from things like fashion because even though it was something I was once VERY into, I just don’t feel like it’s my niche anymore. I find myself wanting to focus more on holistic alternatives, DIY’s, and healthy living.
I don’t know if it’s a generational thing, or if everyone likes to share their thoughts and experiences on the internet, but it’s great to be back.
Via: We Heart It
I’ve spent these past weeks doing a lot of reflecting. Reflecting on life in general: work, interests, hobbies, time, and relationships. I’m working on some making some important personal changes, which also means I’m working on some new and exciting things for Ditz Savant. I’ll be back soon with a fresh new look and feel!
This is one of the most beautiful sunsets I have ever captured. I was in Scarborough, ME on the most beautiful day with the most beautiful friend. I love summer, and cannot wait for its triumphant return!
Squash is everywhere this time of year. I pick up at least one squash a week from my local farmers’ market. The thing about squash, is that not everyone likes it. Most people roast it, mash it or make it into a soup. These things don’t excite someone who was never crazy about squash to begin with. I have a secret weapon recipe that will please even the pickiest eater.
I always roast my squash. It’s easier than trying to peel it and I think it makes for a great flavor. I cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds (I save these and roast them for a quick and easy snack), rub some oil on it and bake it (skin side up) at 350° for 40 minutes (give or take) until it’s soft to the touch. While it’s warm I scoop out all of the squash, mash it, and discard the skins. Usually one squash is too big for Justin and I, so I set aside whatever extra squash I have.
Now I can use that extra squash to make: Squash Chocolate Chip Muffins! That’s right. Squash muffins. They are delicious, healthy and the chocolate chips make them a special treat.
1 C squash
1 C flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C sugar in the raw
2 eggs (I’ve also used chia seeds mixed with water, when I have no eggs. 1 Tbsp chia seeds + 3 Tbsp water = 1 egg)
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, melted
1 C chocolate chips
Directions: Pre-heat oven to 350°. Mix dry ingredients together (flour, baking soda, powder, salt, spices). In separate bowl mix sugar, eggs and butter. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix in squash (I use a mixer for fluffier muffins). Stir in chocolate chips. Grease muffin tins with oil or butter, fill 1/2 way with mix, and bake for 20-25 minutes! Enjoy plain, or spread cream cheese on them for an extra treat!
If you follow me on Instagram, then you have probably seen a sneak peek of our Halloween costumes. As you all know by now, Halloween is my favorite holiday. Part of the fun for me is making my own costume. I have been making my own costumes for as long as I can remember. This doesn’t mean that I spend hours at my sewing machine creating the entire costume from scratch. It’s more about clever thrifting and being creative. I typically end up splurging on a wig, but everything else I sew, cut, paint, glue, or tape.
This year for Halloween Justin and I were Vincent Vega and Mia Wallace from Pulp Fiction. It’s a costume set I’ve always wanted to make. Early in October I stumbled upon a short black flapper wig on sale, so I grabbed it and that was how my costume was born (confession: I have a box of costumes and props, so whenever I happen upon a great piece I add it to my collection-you never know when you’re going to need a costume).
To make our costumes we each bought a wig. Justin also splurged and bought a bolo tie. The syringe is the kind you use for medicine, so it did not have a needle. I used some wire, duct tape and bandages to stick it to my chest. Duct tape is the real hero here, the bandages were just to make it look like flesh. Medical tape is also very sturdy (and you can paint it to match your skin tone using foundation), but it irritates my skin, so I opted not to go that route. The only other accessory I needed was a pair of gold shoes. I found a pair of black shoes in a local thrift shop that were the same shape as the pair Mia wears in the movie, and since I always have gold spray paint on hand it was an easy fix. In the movie Mia wear cuff links, which I don’t own, so I sewed some fancy black buttons onto my shirt cuffs. Add a little fake blood, and my costume was complete!
I carried a Coke can around all night, because that is Mia Wallace’s drug of choice in the movie. Clever right? If you want to see some better photos check out Samuel Cousins Photography. We actually wore these costumes to two different events. One was an annual Halloween event at Space Gallery, where members of local bands dress up as other bands and play live music all night long. It’s really fun, and the costumes at that event are always incredible. The other was an annual house party that our friends host. They have the best Halloween decorations and their costumes are always so so good. We had a blast!
I always have several different kinds of loose leaf tea on hand. During the warm summer months we make tons of different iced teas, and I drink tea constantly during the winter months just to stay warm. I like keeping a variety of blends (caffeinated and herbal) on hand. I am constantly rotating my tea, so I needed a clever way to store everything while keeping it fresh.
We were gifted some tea tins that had some ugly branding on them. I was keeping my tea in these because they are really great tins, but I didn’t want to display them anywhere. I had one black tea tin that I really liked, and then it occurred to me, why not paint all of my tea tins black with chalkboard paint!? This way I will always know what teas I have on hand, and I can easily re-use the tins. It took me maybe 5 minutes to create these. I love them and use them all of the time!
Masking or painters tape
One of my annual Halloween traditions is to get my hair cut. Not because I am getting it cut or styled for my costume, but because everyone at Bang Cut & Color gets really into Halloween. This makes me really happy, because as you all know this is my favorite holiday. The salon is always decorated, there are treats, AND the crew always has the best costumes.
As usual they didn’t disappoint. In fact they went above and beyond with their theme this year. Just another reason Bang is the BEST SALON IN TOWN. Also, because they were psyched when I walked in with my camera and willingly participated in an impromptu photo shoot. Seriously, this crew is the best. If you’re looking for a new salon, I highly recommend Bang Cut & Color.
My days are usually busy, and I like it that way. I never have time to feel bored (uninspired on the other hand…well that’s a different story) because I always have a list of projects I am working on. Regardless of how busy I am, I like to eat and I like to eat well. This can prove to be difficult on especially busy days.
I spent my morning working with my friends from Freedom Farm at our local Farmers’ Market. It was a chilling 37°F when I left my house and the high of the day was 48°F. Needless to say after 5 hours of handling (the most gorgeous) produce, I was ready for a hot meal. I wanted something warm, comforting, and healthy for lunch that didn’t require a ton of time or energy. I came home, threw a baguette in the oven at 200°F, and pulled some smoked salmon and goat’s milk brie out of the refrigerator (to bring it to room temperature). Then I reached for another easy favorite, a box of tomato and roasted red pepper soup. I like to keep things like boxed soups (the pureed varieties are my favorites), pre-packaged frozen Indian or Asian food, different cheeses, meats, jarred marinated vegetables, tapenades and spreads on hand, for what I like to refer to as “emergency meals”.
When the soup was ready I served it in mugs topped with fresh basil, along with the salmon, brie and baguette on a cutting board. Just a few dishes, a pretty presentation, and a healthy meal all in about 10 minutes. Whenever you serve anything on a cutting board with a cheese knife you instantly feel more elegant. It’s a fact, try it. Even on the busiest days I like to feel a little bit fancy. Then the best part: minimal cleanup! The perfect little lunch for someone with a busy schedule.