I don’t mean to tempt you from cheating on your new year’s diet but I’m going to assume that you already have! Let’s be honest, it’s been a whole week since the new year! It’s hard for me to diet at this time of year because the chilly temps make me crave comfort foods. The only meal I struggle with is lunch (if I get to take one) because I typically let my assistant Matt pick where we go which isn’t always healthy. This week we have are working on a huge organizing project at a home in the area so we have been to all of the neighborhood hotspots, in-n-out burger, wendy’s, subway, and togo’s.
search results for label/Cakes
Moving is a great opportunity to clear the clutter and enjoy a fresh start. When a client hires Kuzak’s Closet to help manage their move and organize their new home we take care of all of the details – from the space planning to the unpacking.
We’ve been working on several relocations lately and today I wanted to share my favorite tips and some pictures to inspire you to embrace the opportunity to start fresh.
Tip#1: Sort and purge before you move! So many people pack up all of their possessions and take them to their new home without sorting and purging. Why bring unwanted clutter into your new home? Take the time to eliminate all of the items you no longer use or need. You’ll be surprised at how much easier it is to unpack!
I develop a sorting and purging schedule with my clients prior to their move. We typically schedule 4-5 sessions to work on each space in the home. This helps me understand their storage preferences and gives me an idea of how often things are used which is a great help when it comes to setting up systems in their new home. This is a picture of a toy pile that I sorted through the day before one of my clients moved…
One of my very favorite client organization projects is creating a home Command Center. Every home has multiple catch-all spots for every day items like mail, office supplies, magazines, instruction manuals, gift cards and coupons. I want to help you consolidate everything into one central location, so I am sharing my best how-to tips.
I keep all of the photos used on my blog in organized files in my iPhoto program. Once in awhile I browse through them to remind me what I have been up to, it really helps document my life and I think it will be fun to look back in years to come. Besides all of the before and after photos from my professional organizing projects, recipes are the second most popular topic.
About a year ago I reorganized the recipes that I have posted on my blog under the recipe tab. It really comes in handy when I am sharing a recipe with a friend or looking for an old favorite for myself. Over the weekend I was looking through my archived blog photos and recipes looking for ideas and I was reminded of great recipes that I tried last summer that I need to make again soon. Here are some of my favorites, give them a try!
Each Sunday my sister Ashlie and I co-write a blog post about our favorite things called Sister Sister Sunday. Sister Sister Sunday is a great way for us to keep in touch every week and stay connected. Each week our theme changes so make sure to visit us every Sunday to check out what we are into next!
I was looking for something light to make for dinner this week and I stumbled upon this recipe in my Barefoot Contessa “Back to Basics” cookbook. The risotto cakes had great flavor and nice texture. I served them with a simple mixed green salad. This is something you can make ahead of time and also a way to repurpose leftover risotto. Enjoy!
TGIF! I hope you all are ready for the weekend, I know I am. I had a really busy week organizing and for the first time since our home was robbed I spent the week home alone. I was a bit nervous but our new alarm system and my guard dog Harper put my mind at ease. My husband was working on a project at the New York Google office all week. Lucky guy, I would have loved to tag along like I did last summer but the trip came up at the last-minute.
It was his last week working as an IT auditor, he recently took a new job at the company in engineering. He is really excited about the transition and I am hoping that it will give him more opportunities to grow. I originally thought we would be here for three years max, probably because that is the longest that we have lived anywhere. With this new position that means we will be staying longer, how long you ask? Well, your guess is as good as mine. Being the independent lady that I am it is difficult for me to deal with the unknown but I guess I am going to have to keep rolling with the punches…
I’m so glad I decided to write a post each week called Fab Friday. It forces me to slow down for a bit and reflect on the little moments in my week that made me smile.
This week there were SO many fun events. For example, this picture from last week’s Estate Sale cracks me up. The sale was a complete madhouse and a crazy success, we sold $9,000 in two days out of a mobile home park-AMAZING! The streets were lined with cars and trucks loaded with goodies, fabulous! The guy on the truck closest to the camera is named Gary, he is an estate regular and he makes me smile.
Another estate shopper that makes me smile is named Miguel. He is knows the way to my heart (and a good price) is food. He brought the entire estate crew steak tacos on Saturday, fabulous!
After the sale was over we celebrated with a little college football and a lot of pizza. I have been sticking with my diet for the most part but pizza always makes me cave. This pizza is from Skip’s in Los Altos, it’s so good! (more…)
Since last week’s post there have been many fabulous things going on in my life. I am so thankful for my friend Lori who calls to check in with me a few times a week and even manages to get me out of the house for social events once in a while. She called me last Friday afternoon to ask me if I wanted to participate in a fun run that night.
It was a 5k and I’ll be honest, it’s been a long time since I ran that far. I couldn’t keep up with Lori and her daughter Hayley but I’m proud to report that I was able to run more than half of the race. Lori met me at the finish line which was a nice surprise, gotta love fabulous friends!
Hot or Not?! made a surprise comeback on the blog this week. I love that series, so many fabulous ideas and comments from all of you! I shared my new flannel sheets as one of the HOT items, they are fabulous! Look for the Threshold label at Target! (more…)
I always keep my pantry stocked with basics so I am whip up recipes like this one for delicious sour cream coffee cake. It was featured in Cooking Light Magazine this month and I thought it would be the perfect breakfast treat this week. It was really simple to put together, here is the recipe so you can try it out yourself.
Serving the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley
Mountain View, CA 94041
My mother in law Pam is the nicest person I know. She always sends us nice notes and packages in the mail and I love it. For some reason she has been getting Bon Appetite magazine and since she hates to cook she sends them to me. The March issue featured recipes that anyone can make as long as they had a stocked pantry and this recipe looked so good I had to try it. I have mentioned before that espresso powder is my new favorite ingredient and this recipe tastes so rich and delicious with it. If you are looking for a tasty breakfast treat over the weekend or when guest are in town, you should try this recipe. Enjoy!
It’s Monday and I am so excited to have Ali from Jam Hands guest blogging for me today. She is sharing a recipe I know you will just love! Make sure visit her blog to see what else she is cooking up!
Imagine a moist yellow cake flavored with ripe, mashed bananas and topped with melted butterscotch chips. Are you drooling yet? I am too!
This Banana Butterscotch Cake is favorite it our house. Granted I was a little messy when I drizzled the butterscotch on my cake, but it has a wonderful marbled design when you slice it. Perfect for potlucks, parties or do what I did and keep it all to yourself.
1 2/3 cups (11-ounce package) Butterscotch Flavored Morsels, divided
1 package (18.5 ounces) yellow cake mix (there are many homemade recipes for cake mixes on the web if you aren’t a fan of buying them)
4 large eggs
3/4 cup (2 medium) mashed ripe bananas
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Preheat oven to 375° F. Grease 10-cup bundt or round tube pan.
Microwave 1 1/3 cups morsels in medium, microwave-safe bowl on medium-high (70%) power for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Combine cake mix, eggs, bananas, vegetable oil, water and granulated sugar in large mixer bowl. Beat on low speed until moistened. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes. Stir 2 cups batter into melted morsels. Alternately spoon batters into prepared bundt or round tube pan.
Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for 20 minutes; invert onto wire rack to cool completely.
Place remaining morsels in small, heavy-duty plastic bag. Microwave on medium-high (70%) power for 30 seconds; knead. Microwave at additional 10- to 20-second intervals, kneading until smooth. Cut tiny corner from bag; squeeze to drizzle over cake.
Recipe courtesy of iVillage.com
Each Sunday my sister Ashlie and I co-write a blog post about our favorite things and host a linky party called Sister Sister Sunday. We live 2,000 miles apart (she is in Michigan and I am in California) so Sister Sister Sunday is a great way for us to keep in touch every week and stay connected. Each week our theme changes so make sure to visit us every Sunday to check out what we are into next.
Each Sunday we host a “Linky Party” so all of you can share your favorite things with us. Thank you all for linking up last week, we have so much fun checking out your posts and reading about your families. Our favorite post from last week’s party came from Joy over at Joy of Desserts. She shared a recipe for a tasty strawberry smoothie, doesn’t it look delish!
The rich caramel frosting on this cake is so gooey and sweet, it’s hard to believe the recipe is from Cooking Light. I tried it because I had everything on hand and a craving for something sweet, gotta love that! If you are looking for something special give this a try, I served it warm with french vanilla ice cream and my family loved it.
1 tablespoon cake flour
1 cup packed light brown sugar
7 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup egg substitute
2 cups cake flour (about 8 ounces)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup fat-free milk
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
To prepare cake, coat 2 (8-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray (I used 9 inch pans because that is what I had so my cakes are a bit thin); line bottoms of pans with wax paper. Lightly coat wax paper with cooking spray; dust pans with 1 tablespoon flour. Set aside.
Place 1 cup light brown sugar and 7 tablespoons butter in a large mixing bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed 3 minutes or until well blended. Add egg substitute to sugar mixture; beat well. Lightly spoon 2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, stirring well with a whisk. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with 1 cup milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
Spoon batter into prepared pans. Sharply tap pans once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Remove wax paper; discard. Cool cakes completely on wire rack.
To prepare frosting, combine 1/2 cup dark brown sugar and remaining ingredients in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes or until mixture is thick, stirring constantly.
Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with 1/3 cup frosting. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake.
Each day this week I am going to feature something new from my brother’s wedding. Yesterday I featured the flowers and today I am featuring all of the cakes. Each one looked amazing and tasted wonderful! I am going to have to work out extra hard this week to burn them all off!
I missed you all last week! My husband had a conference in London and I decided to take the opportunity to travel with him. We were lucky to have a few days together to explore the city before his busy schedule kicked in. I took over 800 photos on the trip and today I am just sharing the highlights, please connect on Instagram, I posted dozens of pictures of the sites while I away. We stayed at The Montague on the Garden Hotel and I can’t say enough great things about it, the concierge Jorge and all of the staff were amazing. They really helped me organize my days.
There is a big market in Notting Hill on Saturday mornings called the Portobello Market, it is 2 miles of vendors selling antiques, food, clothing, etc.. I was hoping Hugh Grant would be selling the Notting Hill DVD but no luck! Ha! The antiques booths were fun, lots of neat small items. I was surprised to see so many similar items to what I find and sell here in California like vintage cameras, silver, china patterns…
Today is the 7th edition of Hot or Not?! which means this summer series is almost halfway over! Ashlie and I have been having fun trying new products and getting input from our friends and blog readers about what to try next. Today we are actually spending the day together, that is HOT! We only get to see each other a few times every year (that is NOT!) so we are going to have some fun shopping and catching up.
We are ending today’s edition of Hot or Not with a reader’s pick. My college friend (and sorority sister) Ang emailed me to share her thoughts on a new product. If you have a product that you want to tell the readers about please don’t hesitate to contact me!