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Wedding Hair Madness!

    Wedding season is in full swing and I could not be happier about it- This last month has been a whirlwind and I am finally getting a chance to relax (quickly) and see photos from a few of the STUNNING weddings I’ve been a part of! Bridal hair is such a fun experience for me and I can’t wait to share more images from weddings booked for the months ahead!

  For Pricing/Booking information you can find me on:

 Style Seat @ http://www.styleseat.com/HairbyFergie

 Instagram @hairbyfergie

 Faceook @ http://www.facebook.com/HairbyAmandaFerguson

Mr & Mrs Bonta – Temecula Creek Inn, Temecula

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Mr & Mrs Gudino – Sunset Cliffs, La Jolla 

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Mr & Mrs Power – Circle Oak Ranch, Fallbrook

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SHOP UPDATE!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend! I am excited to share that a long overdue shop update has happened at http://www.Etsy.com/Shop/ACarteBlanche and below are some of the cute new items I’ve been working on 🙂 Newborn to 1 yr booties and bibs for your stylish kiddo’s. Booties are $12/a pair and bibs $8 – set of booties and a bib $20. More styles/patterns will be coming to the shop soon so stay tuned!

If you have an idea in mind for something special … I LOVE custom orders so contact me here, on Etsy or instagram (@ACarteBlance) and we’ll create the perfect set for you!

-A

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Adventures In Mixed Media Vol. 2

L & I experimented with our second mixed media journal page and we had such a blast! This go around we got to play with Tim Holtz’ tissue paper as a background for both of our pieces, along with his distress stamps (of course!), white gesso, texture paste, watercolors and a mix of shading/sketching techniques. It’s been so much fun to challenge ourselves with this medium and see how we grow and learn as we go. I honestly can’t get enough!

Take a look at our final pages (below) and create something YOU-nique this week! 🙂

“Natures Beauty” – L

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“Imagine.Create.Inspire” – A

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“LOVE In A Cup” – Mixed Media

“Love In A Cup” … My first ever Mixed Media page… created by using Tim Holtz distressed inks, clock stencil by Tim Holtz Collection, coffee bean stamps by Creative Images, heart die from Tim Holtz Alterations, and white cup is drawn/cut out by me (yikes. lol).  It was a blast and scary at the same time, and I love creating along with the very talented Ms. Amanda!

-L

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Adventures in Mixed Media Vol.1

Recently Loralee turned me onto the amazingly talented Vicky Papaioannou and her mixed-media art journals which are STUNNING (to say the least). After binge watching almost every journal video she has on YouTube …. I went out and bought an art journal for myself and Loralee so we could experiment this medium! One of our goals this year is to really push ourselves out of our comfort zone, and this is definitely out of that zone for us.

When I started all I knew for sure is I couldn’t wait to use texture paste with stencils and the Prima Bumble-Bee stamp I had just bought on amazon (lol) – We worked with a variety of products but the background was stamped with Tim Holtz distressed inks then a light honeycomb pattern stamp which I used my Prima watercolors to distress a bit as well. As the texture-pasted areas were drying I drew and cut out (my version) of a beehive, water-colored & stamped it, along with a tree for it to hang. Then distressed a piece of twine to hang the beehive from my tree & fastened it to the page. I stamped out my cute little bee’s and a few leaves and flowers from there – attached them with a mixture of modge-podge and glue dots, added the “BEE” stamping and wooden “happy” letters which I had stamped into black archival ink to match the theme. The final touch was a white gel-pen to accent certain areas of the page (beehive, wings, lettering) and I am really excited with how it turned out! I’ll be posting the finished photo/info for Loralee’s journal page as well, so stay tuned! 🙂

-A

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Kent Wedding (Professional Photos)

Mrs. Kent emailed me a few more photos from her wedding photographer and they are just too stunning not to share! Take a look for yourself-such a beautiful day, I am so glad I could be a small part of it 🙂

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-A

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Valentine’s Day Card Making!

V-Day is right around the corner, and we just couldn’t resist making some cards for our special someone’s. L & I invited my sister over to join in the fun and we L-O-V-E what we came up with!

A few of the designs are available on my Etsy and if you order by Monday you can get yours in time for Valentine’s :]

http://www.Etsy.com/Shop/ACarteBlanche

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Wishing you and yours a day filled with love & laughter!

-L&A

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Gingerbread Truffles!

The holidays may have come to an end, but winter is still in full swing (even here in California! lol). Each month L & I send out an informative post card to our Real Estate clients in town with a simple, yet DELICIOUS recipe on the back for them to enjoy … this month’s was SO good we thought we’d share with you all too!

*Our only substitute was  Ghirardelli white chocolate chips instead of the vanilla almond bark, which melted so easily and tasted divine! 

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-L&A

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Kent Wedding

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of doing hair for my good friend Aneris’ wedding at Green Gables in San Marcos, CA. It was such a perfect day and I couldn’t be happier for her and her husband! They are such an awesome couple and their families are so filled with life & love. I feel so blessed to have been just a small part of their special day. Here are a few iPhone snaps, can’t wait to see the professional photos!

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Bridal Shower Goodness

One of my good friends is getting married next month and last weekend was her Bridal Shower, it was put on by her mom and maid-of-honor and turned out absolutely PERFECT! She wanted a girly, vintage theme and that’s exactly what the day was. Her mom and best friend commissioned me to do a few things (game signs, game pieces, envelopes, & cupcake toppers) I was so excited and even more excited to share how they turned out! :]

Custom Wedding Dress & “i do” cupcake toppers, hand-painted canvas signs for games, hand-made envelopes & the “Date Nights at Home” mason jar with sticks to write ideas for the bride & groom (too cute!)

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The bottom two pictures were of my gift to her (Pin-spired, of course!) A cute little basket with wines for them to enjoy on their wedding night, honeymoon & first anniversary. I had so much fun hand-crafting the tags and card for her and hope they enjoy each moment of wedded bliss! Can’t wait for the wedding!

-A

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I’m on YouTube!

So, this is something I’ve been wanting to do for quite some time now but have been to nervous to get in front of the camera. I’m so used to being behind it when I’m working, and that’s usually how I like it (lol). But, people have asked me recently to start making videos of the hair, makeup and crafts I do so I worked up the courage and went for it!

If you’re on YouTube too head over to my channel and let me know what you think and what videos you think I should do in the future :]

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RescueONE Necklaces!

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of working with Marissa of Three Little Lambz Photography to shoot some pictures, and this is how it turned out! Show your support by visiting Marissa’s Instagram @ThreeLittleLambz and commenting with your Paypal email address under the necklace you want to order. Even more cute styles will be on their way soon so stay tuned!

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“Be the change you want to see in the world”

-A

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D.I.Y. (Pallet Inspired) Desk!

Ok ……. I got a little sidetracked at Home Depot with my dad over the weekend and this is what happened. I’ve been obsessing over pallet projects thanks to Pinterest (of course) but couldn’t bring myself to pay  $50 for a used pallet that was questionably sturdy! So,I decided to attempt it from scratch and I am so happy with the result! All together it took my dad & I about 4 1/2 hours and $50 (total) to make this bad boy and I think it is just perfect, the only thing I have left to do is pick a color to stain it which just may be the most difficult task. I’m horrible with decisions.

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Cheers to getting creative! Now i’m off to stress about stains! I hope everyone has a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend and that you get to spend it with those you love, be that those you’ve birthed, or those who’ve birthed you lol!

-A

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RescueONE >>>

Happy humpday! I am so excited that I got my RescueONE necklace in the mail last night! It’s so dainty but holds such a great meaning I can’t wait to wear it! If you don’t know @rescueonefoundation was created to stop human trafficking and abuse and they are doing amazing things for this cause so far! I will be partnering with them in the future so stay tuned for more exciting things to come with this great organization. Check them out on instagram and show your support with the hastag #IStand

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Love & Light – A

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Old Town Adventures

I can get so busy that I forget to stop, take a look around and truly embrace the beauty of where I live. Temecula (which people finally know thanks to our wineries) is a stunning city, and Old Town is one of my favorite places to walk through whenever I get a chance. Lucky for me today was one of those days! A good friend of mine Lena & I met up at Havana Kitchen for our favorite, a sal-latte (seriously, if you’ve never tried a Cuban sal-latte you need to stop what you’re doing and GO!) and some breakfast before heading over to the open marketplace to check out all their goodies. We tasted different honeys and browsed organic creations from avocado oils to goats milk soap & toiletries. I was so inspired by the succulent gardens that I’ll be heading to Home Depot to get creative with my own, so stay tuned! After the marketplace we popped into a new restaurant The Goat & Vine for a delicous vegan flatbread pizza, a local brew and some catching up, which was just what I needed. It’s so awesome to see our little city grow into a bustling hub with new restaurants and hip shops, I can’t wait to see what opens up next!

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-A

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Stuffed Artichokes

The thought of baking artichokes (in any form) has always been overwhelming to me. But I picked these bad boys up from Baron’s on my way home and told myself today’s the day I conquer this fear! Ha! Naturally, I Googled for a recipe and the first one that sounded good I went with! The result being one of the most delicious artichokes I’ve ever had! And the most simple, non-overwhelming dish to prepare!

Stuffed Artichokes

Ingredients:
3 artichokes
1 lemon, thinly sliced
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 cup Italian style bread crumbs
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup olive oil plus 2 tablespoons, divided
Salt and pepper

Directions:

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Cut the stems from the artichokes to leave a neat, flat base. Lay each artichoke on its side, and cut away the upper third with a sharp knife. With kitchen shears, remove the prickly leaf tips from each remaining leaf. Rub the cut sides and bottom with a lemon slice, squeezing lemon juice onto the cut areas and set aside.

3. Place the prepared artichokes, lemon slices, and bay leaves in the boiling water and simmer, partially covered, until the bottom is tender and can be pierced with a sharp knife and an outer leaf pulls out easily, about 25 minutes.

4. Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until softened, about 4 minutes.

5. To the onion pan, add the garlic and continue to cook for 30 seconds.

6. Remove from the heat and stir in the bread crumbs, lemon zest, Parmesan, and 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Mix well and adjust seasonings with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

7. Drain the artichokes upside down in a colander.

8. When the artichokes are cool enough to handle, press the leaves gently back so that the artichoke opens to reveal the inner choke and prickly leaves. Pull out the cone of undeveloped white leaves and gently scrape out the choke with a spoon so as not to damage the heart. Gently pull the leaves outward from the center until the leaves open slightly.

9. Fill the artichoke cavities with bread stuffing, and pack a little bit into the space between the leaves.

10. Place the artichokes in a baking dish and drizzle the tops with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

11. Pour 1/2 cup of water into the bottom of the dish and place in oven. Bake until the artichokes are golden brown and the bread crumbs develop a nice crust, about 10 to 15 minutes.

12. Transfer to a serving plate, drizzle with some olive oil and sprinkle some grated Parmesan. Serve with additional lemon wedges.

Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed

 (And everyone will think you’re a gourmet chef hehe)

-A

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You know what they say …

Well, you know what Coldplay says, “The lights will guide you home”. One of my favorite lyrics of all time. No matter where you are in life it seems if you find the “light” in the situation it will lead you home.  I had fun with this piece and even added a few hidden sparkles you can see when the light hits it just right, check it out for yourself.

Available on Etsy now! :]

Love & Light

-A

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New on Etsy!

I have started and can not stop creating these little floral goodies! After months of extreme inventory lag I am excited to share the two newest additions to the ACB shop. They’re made to order, so each has its own unique quality. Take a minute to check them out, I think you’ll like what you see!1 2

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Now back to creating! hehe

-A

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Headband Heaven!

It’s Friday! And if that isn’t enough to put you in a good mood check out Miss Emilee in her Floral & Lace Headband. I am obsessed with this picture and seeing my headbands come to life on these little cuties, wouldn’t you agree?

Have a great weekend & get ready for some awesome updates next week! ;]

-A

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A Carte Blanche Shop Update (Finally!)

I have (finally) added some more handmade goodies to my Etsy shop A Carte Blanche (www.Etsy.com/shop/ACarteBlanche) Starting with some adorable bohemian-style headbands! These are for newborns but I love customizing orders and colors/sizes are subject to that change. I’ll keep you all updated as I post more to the ACB site, but for now check out these cute new designs! ($9.50 each, available now)

-A

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We’re Featured!

Hi everyone!

It’s been a while since my last post (my sincere apologies) but I do have some very exciting news to show for it! Hair by Amanda Ferguson & ACarteBlanche Paper Creations were featured in San Diego Style Weddings Magazine for the wedding of Jessica & Michael Estes in La Jolla, California! We could not be more excited, and can’t wait to see what is in store for us next! Here is a peak at the magazine and our feature.

If you’re a bride-to-be or just looking for party/styling inspiration you can pick up your copy of the mag on stands until November 20th!

Here’s to new adventures!

-A

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Adventures with “The Paleo Kitchen” Cookbook!

Let me start by saying this cookbook is everything I’d hoped it would be and MORE!

From how beautifully set up it is, to the absolutely DELICIOUS recipes inside! George (of Civilized Caveman) and Juli (of Paleomg) truly out did themselves. My first choice was the Cinnamon-Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread, and it was divine! The simplicity of both the ingredients and preparation made the end result even better! Can’t wait to try out their next recipe!

If you haven’t picked up your copy of “The Paleo Kitchen” run out and do so now, for this and many more recipes! You will not regret it!

Ingredients

For the pan
  • coconut oil, to grease the pan
For the banana bread:
  • 4 medium bananas (about 1 pound)
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted grass-fed butter, melted
  • ½ cup almond butter
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of fine-grain sea salt
For the swirl:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted grass-fed butter
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips
  • 1 tablespoon organic honey
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-by-5-inch metal loaf pan and line it with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the bananas, eggs, butter, and almond butter in a food processor or mixing bowl and mix until the ingredients are well blended. Add the coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla, and salt and continue to mix until all the ingredients are well combined.
  3. In a double boiler over medium-low heat, mix together the swirl ingredients. Heat, stirring often, until the chocolate has melted.
  4. Pour the bread batter into the prepared pan and spread it out evenly. As soon as you pour the batter, pour the chocolate swirl directly on top and use a knife to swirl the chocolate throughout the loaf pan.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan on a cooling rack for 15 minutes before serving.

*UPDATE: Julie featured my photo as one of her faves! Check it out below! :]

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Enjoy!

-A

 

 

 

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Fun with Cupcake Toppers!

Gender Reveal Cupcake Toppers

I had the pleasure of making some fun cupcake toppers for an upcoming gender reveal party and I could not be more excited to share how they turned out! She requested little mustaches and cute pink/purple bows for the design. I of course put my own little twist on both and I just LOVE how they turned out!

Special order via my Etsy Shop ACarteBlanche Paper Creations! Check it out @ www.esty.com/shop/ACarteBlanche

-A

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Paleo Thin Mints

Paleo Thin Mints

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, today’s treat is a delicious guilt-free take on everyone’s favorite Girl Scout Cookie … the Thin Mint! These are so delicious it will be hard for you to believe they are paleo, gluten and dairy free!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup blanched almond flour
  • 1 tsp. coconut flour
  • 2 Tbsp. cacao powder
  • 1/8 tsp Himalayan sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut cream
  • 1/4 Cup RAW honey
  • 1 tsp. organic peppermint extract
  • 6 oz. ENJOY life mini chocolate chips (for melting)
  • 1/2 tsp organic peppermint extract

Directions:

  1. In your food processor, combine almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder
  2. Pulse in coconut cream, honey and peppermint until doughy in consistency
  3. Freeze dough for 10-15 minutes
  4. Using a 2-inch cookie cutter, cut out dough
  5. Transfer onto a non-stick baking sheet (or parchment paper)
  6. Bake at 350 for 4 minutes
  7. Cool completely, then freeze for about an hour
  8. Once completely froze, melt chocolate and peppermint in a small saucepan (or in your microwave)
  9. Dip each cookie into chocolate, then place on to parchment lined plate
  10. Transfer plate to freezer for chocolate to harden (about an hour)
  11. Serve & Enjoy!

-L&A

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Chocolate Almond-Coconut Muffins

Chocolate Almond-Coconut Muffins

Happy hump day everyone! To get you through the mid week rut, we have a truly scrumptious chocolate treat for you to enjoy! These muffins are super simple to bake and will have you licking the spoon (seriously the batter tastes JUST like brownies, too good to be true! hehe)

Give it a try for yourself and let us know what you think!

Ingredients:

  • 1 C. Barney Butter Cocoa + Coconut Almond Butter
  • 4 eggs, whisked
  • 1/3 C. vanilla spice maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 C. coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 C. Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, mix together eggs, almond butter, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.
  3. Add cocoa powder, mix. Add coconut flour, mix. Finally add baking soda and powder, cinnamon and salt, mix well.
  4. Fold in chocolate chips.
  5. Scoop batter into greased or lined muffin tins  (this recipe will make about 9-10 muffins)
  6. Sprinkle some extra chocolate chips on top and place into the oven for about 20-25 minutes.

Enjoy!

-L&A

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Banana Bread Coffee Cake

Banana Bread Coffee Cake

It has finally started to drizzle in southern California, and we are so excited about it! So in honor of this chilly weather we’re staying indoors, brewing some fresh coffee and whipping up this DELICIOUS Banana Bread Coffee Cake! It is another great recipe from paleomg.com and it truly hits the spot!

Give it a try for yourself, this super moist totally paleo treat is the perfect way to start (or end) your day with a treat!

Ingredients:

  • 3 brown bananas, mashed
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup almond butter (or other nut/seed butter)
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
For the toppings:
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) grass fed butter, at room temperature (or coconut oil)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoons almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup pecans, crushed

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8.5×4.5 baking dish with oil then line the middle with parchment paper. It will make it easier to remove from the pan without it coming apart.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together bananas, maple syrup, vanilla extract, eggs, and almond butter.
  3. Then add coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt and mix well.
  4. Pour batter into baking dish. Place on a baking sheet.
  5. In a small bowl, add butter, coconut sugar, almond flour, cinnamon, and pecans. Use your hands to mix the toppings together.
  6. Place chunks of the toppings all around the top of the banana bread mixture.
  7. Place in oven to bake for 50 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, place on cooling rack and let rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.
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Berry Bliss Bars

Berry Bliss Bars

Why is it that healthy desserts just don’t quite seem to hit the spot the same as their sugar and dairy filled counterparts? And how does one replace the many delicious frozen treats with healthier options? Well we’re happy to say that these Berry Bliss Bars are the answer!! A scrumptious treat for your tummy and your taste buds that you just won’t believe are sugar-free, diary-free and totally paleo!

Go on, we dare you! ;]

Ingredients:

For the crust
  • 5 dried dates, pitted
  • 1 cup almond butter
  • ¾ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
For the toppings (part one)
  • 2 teaspoon coconut milk/water
  • ½ cup raspberries
  • ½ cup blackberries
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
For the toppings (part 2)
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of coconut milk (placed in refrigerator overnight), only use the cream on top, leave behind the coconut water/milk at the bottom
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Place dates in food processor and pulse to break down into pieces.
  2. Then add almond butter, coconut, honey, vanilla extract and salt and pulse turn on to blend until ingredients are well combined.
  3. Line a bread pan with parchment paper, add ingredients from the food processor and press down until even throughout. Place in freezer while finishing the rest of the ingredients.
  4. Scoop out the coconut cream that has settled at the top of your canned coconut milk and place in the bowl and back in the fridge.
  5. Place 2 teaspoons of coconut milk/water that is at the bottom of the can, into a small saucepan over medium heat.
  6. Add raspberries, blackberries, honey and lemon juice in the pan and mix together. Let simmer for less than 5 minutes or until the berries become just slightly soft. You don’t want a soup. Let cool.
  7. Now mix together the coconut cream, honey, and vanilla extract in the bowl that you placed in the fridge.
  8. Once the berries have cooled, finishing the layers. Add the coconut milk mixture on top of the crust, spread out evenly, then pour the berries on top, once again evenly.
  9. Place in the freezer for 1+ hours to harden a bit. And serve.
  10. *To store these, store them in the fridge. The coconut milk will melt fast.
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Apple Cider Muffins

Apple Cider Muffins

Nothing is sweeter than the taste of warm apple cider on a cold day (not that we’ve been having very cool days in SoCal lately … today was a chilly 85 lol). However, we decided that the only thing that could be better than the delicious beverage has to be a fresh out of the oven apple cider muffin! Our recipe uses ‘sweet’ sorghum flour (a gluten substitute) which we found we really enjoyed, flavor and texture wise! It is comparable to tapioca flour, which you can use instead if that’s what you have on hand.

er you’re experiencing an early spring like us or you’re in the midst of the “polar vortex” these treats are a must try!

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C. almond butter
  • 1/2 C. apple cider
  • 1 apple (cored & shredded)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 C. ‘sweet’ white sorghum flour
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut flour
  • 1/4 C. sugar in the RAW
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • dash of salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In medium bowl mix together shredded apple, almond butter, egg, and apple cider vinegar (make sure ingredients are completely blended)
  3. In  a separate bowl mix dry ingredients; sorghum flour, coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix completely
  5. Grease (or use cupcake liners) muffin tins and pour in batter
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes
  7. Let cool, Enjoy!

-L&A

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[DIY] Valentine’s Day Coasters

[DIY] Valentine’s Day Coasters

We love working with Tim Holtz Distressed Inks, and after finding a box of tumbled tile in the garage (leftover from a bathroom project several years ago) the idea popped into our heads to stamp the tile and use them as Valentine’s Day coasters! The size of the tiles seemed perfect (3.5″ by 3.5″). This is a fun 5 minute project, using only 3 distressed ink colors along with “Painted Fence” paint, and we just love the naturally distressed result!

To start, we rubbed the ink pads on the tile using the brown colors to develop a worn effect.

Then we white washed the tile with Painted Fence, and rubbed the excess off with  a paper towel.

Lastly, we stamped our design!

Voila! Stunningly simple DIY coasters! Be careful though, this project is so easy it may become your new addiction! hehe

**To prevent scratching delicate surfaces, you can either apply felt or self-adhesive rubber dots (the kind you use to prevent your kitchen cabinet doors from banging) to the back of each tile. You may want to think about decoupage-ing the tile as well to protect your one of a kind design **

-L&A

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Raspberry Chia Chocolate Bark

Raspberry Chia Chocolate Bark

Monday’s can be rough … whether you had a crazy weekend or just kept it simple at home, the appearance of Monday morning always seems a bit too sudden. So to switch it up this morning, we decided to treat ourselves and sweeten the start of our Valentine’s week!

This is another quick and easy recipe that is a truly decadent snack for you to enjoy or package and share :]

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 C. Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips (for melting)
  • 1 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 5-10 Raspberries to crumble for topping

Directions:

  1. Melt chocolate chips in a double broiler or in your microwave
  2. Stir in chia seeds
  3. Cover a small plate or pan with parchment paper and spread your chocolate about 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick onto the paper
  4. Crumble raspberries and place on top of the chocolate
  5. Place into freezer for 1 1/2 hours (or until completely set)
  6. Remove from parchment paper, break into pieces and serve immediately

-L&A

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Carrot Cake Truffles

Carrot Cake Truffles

What started as a simple carrot cake using leftover shredded carrots from our crumble bars turned into this happy accident of a recipe that is almost too good to be true! Crumbling the cake after it cooled and adding some coconut milk whipped cream to moisten and roll into little truffles turned this basic carrot cake into a delicious chocolate covered snack.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup carrots finely grated
  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup sugar in the RAW
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3-4 heaping teaspoons coconut-milk whipped cream for filling
  • 1 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips for topping

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, mix the almond flour, baking soda, coconut palm sugar and sliced almonds
  3. In a separate bowl whisk together the eggs, coconut oil, vanilla extract and grated carrots
  4. combine wet and dry ingredients and gently mix the batter, being careful not to over mix or the almond flour will become oily.
  5. lightly grease an 8×8 pan with coconut oil
  6. pour batter evenly in the pan and bake approximately 30-35 minutes
  7. let cake cool completely on a wire rack, before “crumbling” with a spoon
  8. Mix in 3-4 heaping spoonfuls of whipped cream (distributing evenly) this is what will hold your cake together as truffles
  9. Using your spoon create 1 inch cake rounds (this should make about 15 cake balls)
  10. Place onto a non-stick sheet and set in the refrigerator to harden
  11. In a small bowl melt the chocolate chips
  12. With a spoon roll balls into chocolate until fully covered, set back onto your non-stick surface and let cool completely
  13. ENJOY!

-L&A

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Carrot Crumble Bars [Gluten-Free]

Carrot Crumble Bars

Can’t figure out what to make with all the carrots you have left in that bag (…before they expire, lol)? Well here is a fabulous organic & gluten-free recipe for you to try! These bars are yet another simple bake and are quite crumbly, you could even use them as a layered parfait-type dessert with coconut milk whipped cream in between layers …. sounds DELISH! Whichever way you choose to eat them though, we’re sure this will become one of your new favorite healthy snacks!

Ingredients: 

  • 1 C. Sugar in the RAW
  • 3/4 C. Organic Coconut Oil
  • 1 tsp. Organic Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 C. Coconut Flour
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 C. Organic Raw Carrots (Ground)

Directions:

  1. Cream sugar and oil together.
  2. Add vanilla and eggs. Beat well.
  3. Sift together flour, cinnamon, soda and salt.
  4. Add to creamed mixture.
  5. Fold in carrots.
  6. Bake in greased (13 x 9) pan in 350 degree oven for 25 minutes.

-L&A

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Coconut Milk Whipped Cream

Coconut Milk Whipped Cream

Say hello to your new guilty pleasure! So simple to make and super delicious you will want to put this on just about everything … and since it’s gluten-free, dairy-free and totally paleo, you can! hehe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of full fat coconut milk (refrigerated over-night)
  • 1-2 Tbsp. honey (maple syrup or agave work as well)
  • 1/2 tsp. organic vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Scoop out the thick cream that has solidified on the top layer of the coconut milk can into mixing bowl. This will become your whipped cream!
  2. Add sweetener to taste, and vanilla extract to mixing bowl
  3. Mix ingredients until soft peaks are formed (we used our Kitchen Aid stand mixer for this)

Voila! Whipped Cream! ENJOY!

-L&A

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Blueberry Faux-Bread [Paleo]

Blueberry Faux-Bread

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I strongly believe one of the hardest parts of eating healthy(er) is having to say no to bread! It’s just so good! And while nothing will ever completely replace the traditional taste of bread, I have to admit this recipe will come close. Not to mention the truly heavenly smell that will come out of your oven while this bakes, to die for! A quick prep and not having to wait for yeast to rise makes this a simple, guilt-free way to fill that void resisting bread has left you with.

Ingredients:

  •        1/2-1 cup blueberries (or whatever fits your fancy)
  •        2 tablespoons honey
  •        1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  •        1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  •        4 eggs (whisked)
  •        2 cups almond flour
  •        1 tablespoon cinnamon
  •        1 teaspoon baking soda

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease bread pans with coconut oil and set aside.
  3. Mix dry ingredients: almond flour, cinnamon and baking soda.
  4. In a seperate bowl mix together: honey, vanilla extract, apple cider vinegar, and eggs.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients; make sure these are well incorporated.
  6. Fold in blueberries to the mixture.
  7. Pour  into bread pan. Bake for about 35 minutes (time may vary depending on pan size).
  8. Let Cool
  9. Cut & Enjoy!

-A

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Raspberry Chocolate-Chip Chia Pudding

Raspberry Chocolate-Chip Chia Pudding (Overnight)

If you’re anything like me, breakfast is not your favorite meal of the day. I don’t know if it’s that I’m not hungry enough right when I wake up, that I am usually running to get to my first destination in the morning and never have time to prep, or that it just seems like breakfast food is all the same that turns me off from it all together. The trouble is it’s the MOST important meal of the day, and to skip it or eat junk when you’re in a rush is only doing yourself a disservice.

So while searching desperately for a new twist on boring old breakfast I was so excited when I came across an overnight (organic and paleo friendly) chia seed breakfast pudding ….. YUM! This recipe has 3 simple stages: prep, pour into a lidded container for storage while it sets in the fridge, then in the morning put into a glass with the toppings you choose & enjoy. Couldn’t have been easier, and prepping the night before gives you a breakfast on the go – just what I needed!

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups coconut milk (about 12 ounces)
  • 1 heaping tablespoon honey & flax almond butter
  • 1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup raspberries (for topping)
  • 1-2 tablespoons Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips (for topping)
Directions:
  1. Blend together coconut milk, almond butter, vanilla extract, and honey in your blender.
  2. Add chia seeds into the blended mixture, be sure to stir vigorously so that the seeds are thoroughly saturated
  3. Put mixture into desired container & seal top
  4. Place in refrigerator overnight.
  5. Top with Raspberries & Chocolate Chips
  6. Enjoy your delicious & nutritious breakfast!

 Breakfast never looked so good! Hehe

-L&A

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Paleo Friendly Chocolate-Chip Cookie Dough Bites [Gluten & Dairy Free]

Hello 2014, we’re back! 

It has been FAR too long since we have been able to post, but we’re back and ready for action! 2013 was a very busy and life changing year for us for many reasons, and as a result this year’s resolution is to get (and stay) a little bit healthier hehe. So, we have adopted a semi-paleo; gluten-free, dairy-free & organic as possible diet. Sounds limiting, but I have to admit, one of our favorite treats with this new lifestyle are these Chocolate-Chip Cookie Dough Bites. It’s a new way of enjoying an indulgent treat without the guilt that comes along with it. Not to mention how quick and easy they are to make, truly a win-win situation! Based on one of my favorite paleo-bloggers Juli of PaleOMG.com‘s (If you haven’t checked out her blog head over NOW! She is amazing, and truly an inspiration to us with this new lifestyle) Protein Chocolate-Chip Cookie Dough Ball recipe, it is sure to have your taste buds tingling! Try them out for yourself and let us know how you feel about this healthy treat!

Ingredients
  • 3 dried (pitted) dates
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 heaping tablespoons almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • ½ teaspoon organic vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips

Directions

  1. In your food processor, pulse dates until they are minced
  2. In a bowl mix dates, coconut flour, coconut oil, almond butter, coconut milk, vanilla extract and a dash of salt
  3. Add in your chocolate chips.
  4.  Roll together ingredients to make 7-8 balls.
  5. Place in the refrigerator (freezer if you’re in a hurry) to set

Once you feel they’re firm enough, grab one or more & ENJOY!

L&A

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Apple Pie Baked Apples

Apple Pie Baked Apples

We are SO excited because this week is our first ever guest post with our friend Sheri who shared this delicious recipe with us! She and her husband had just returned from a spur of the moment trip to Julian for their famous apple pie and cider when she called us with the idea to make our own apple pie …. in baked apples! Needless to say we were hooked… luckily she had picked up some ready mix from Julian during her trip, so we set a date to make these yummy treats! The recipe we used is simple and practically fool-proof, as well as being the perfect single serving dessert. And, if you’re looking for a fun treat to really make a statement at your family table this Thanksgiving, this is it!

Ingredients

  • 4-8 Apples (Granny Smith & Rome apples are perfect!)
  • Your Favorite Apple Pie mix (Or self prepared mix of sugars & cinnamon)
  • 1 tsp. Butter to coat Apples
  • Pie Crust (Ready made)

Directions

  1. Preheat Oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Cut tops off of apples, core with melon baller leaving 1/4 inch thickness around sides so the apple does not buckle when baking.
  3. Use 1-2 apples to peel and slice into small-ish pieces. Place into mixing bowl.
  4. Coat evenly with butter & sugars, place mixture into cored apples and set aside.
  5. Roll out pie crust mixture, slice into strips for lattice & cover apples
  6. Place into 8×10 baking pan and fill with just enough water to coat the bottom of the pan.
  7. Cover with tin foil & Place into oven.
  8. Bake apples for 25 minutes with the foil, then remove foil and bake additional 25-30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
  9. Let cool, serve & Enjoy!
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In the name of L.O.V.E

Happy October! (well, what is left of it hehe)

We just love, love, love weddings! For the past month or so we have been meeting with a lovely couple to help them create a colorful cake, and cupcakes to go with their rainbow themed wedding in gorgeous Dana Point, California. We are so honored they asked us to be a part of their event (I also did the hair for the big day!) and even more excited to be able to create from the ground up our first ever wedding cake! It was a very trying process to say the least but for first timers I must say we’re pretty dang proud of what we accomplished and can’t wait to take on our next project!

Check out our process below and let us know what you think. Any tips or tricks you bakers use are greatly appreciated as well so don’t be shy!

-L&A

*Special thanks to my amazing sister Danielle for helping us create and deliver our masterpiece! We can’t thank you enough!

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Peach Cobbler Cupcakes

Peach Cobbler Cupcakes

Our final peach post is here, and it is even MORE delicious than our last! The inspiration for this treat came from  peach cobbler cookies which got us thinking … why not cupcakes?! It’s the perfect blend of flavors and will not disappoint. We garnished with cream cheese frosting (our favorite) a sprinkle of cinnamon and a cute little slice of peach!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2  C. Flour
  • 1 1/4  Tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/4  Tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/2  C. Butter, Room Temperature (TIP: microwave for 10 sec)
  • 3/4  C. Brown Sugar
  • 1/4  C. Sugar
  • 2  Eggs
  • 1/2  C. Sour Cream
  • 1  Tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/4  C.  Peaches, thinly sliced (about 2 peaches)

Directions:

  1. Whisk flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a small bowl.Beat butter and sugars in a large bowl for 1 minute, or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, sour cream, and vanilla extract until blended.
  2. Mix in flour mixture.
  3. Fold in peaches.
  4. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 of the way full.
  5. Bake at 350F for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the cupcake clean.

Decorate & Enjoy!

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Love By The Bay

This past weekend I had the pleasure of doing Bridal hair for a positively B E A U T I F U L wedding at the Hilton Mission Bay in San Diego. Wedding styling is one of my favorite aspects of being a hairstylist since there is so much energy, love (and often bundles of nerves!) that make it such a memorable experience for all involved. Claire and Sam’s wedding was no exception! I had an amazing time with her lovely ladies in waiting as they spoke of  the tradition of the wedding ceremony and reflected upon  how truly happy they were to be witness to these two becoming one. Claire even sent the groom a secret gift while he was brunching with his groomsmen that morning via adorable flower girl …. a custom-made watch he had no idea she knew he wanted, too sweet!

Now, on to the HAIR!  (he he) What can I say, this was a stunning group of girls and their styling definitely showed through!  They ranged from a super sleek Zooey Deschanel look with long sleek hair for the flower girls with blunt bangs, to a sweet Taylor Swift inspired side do. The beautiful bride went with a classic pulled back updo with some fun fishtail braids and plenty of curls accented by a low veil and an awesome custom flowered hairpin made by her mother, so cute! I could not have dreamed of a sweeter group of girls to work with, and I am so glad I could be a part of their love filled day.

Congrats again Claire & Sam!

-A

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Roasted Peach and Lavender Ice Cream [Organic]

Roasted Peach & Lavender Ice Cream [Organic]

Something about roasted peaches and the smell of lavender just overwhelms the senses and makes your mouth water. This is our organic adaptation of Roasted Peach & Lavender Ice Cream… and there are really no words that capture the flavorful goodness of this treat. Not to mention the extreme heat we’ve been experiencing these last few weeks which only makes this recipe that much more appetizing. It is a “perfect storm”  of ingredients that becomes the ultimate summer time snack!

Ingredients:

  • 6 peaches (organic)
  • 1 tablespoon(ish) sugar-free honey substitute to drizzle over peaches
  • 1 teaspoon dried edible lavender buds (can be found at sprouts/whole foods)
  • 1 cups organic heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar-free honey substitute (also found at sprouts, and so delicious you won’t even notice a difference!)

Instructions:

Prepare the ice cream:

  1. Pre heat the oven to 415 F
  2. Cut the peaches in half and remove the pits.
  3. Place in large roasting pan, cut side up. Drizzle with the honey and lavender.
  4. Roast until golden brown and soft, about 50-60 minutes.
  5. Let cool completely and peel the skins off the peaches (our peaches didn’t seem to want to peel so we simply sliced them into small/skinny pieces to blend).
    Reserve.

In a large saucepan set over medium heat, cook together the cream, milk, almond milk and honey until they barely start to boil. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Refrigerate until cold.
When the fruit and cream base are chilled sufficiently, add them to the base and process the ice cream according to your ice cream maker’s instructions (we used our blender to leave it  a little chunkier and more natural in texture).
Freeze until set (Mason Jars work GREAT for freezing and look so neat!)

SCOOP AND ENJOY!

-L&A

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Grandma’s Kitchen

This past weekend my husband and I flew out to Waupun, Wisconsin (my dad’s hometown) for my cousin’s wedding and it was GORGEOUS! We stayed with my grandpa in the house he has lived in since my dad was young and actually built himself, along with several others on the street. There is something so special about that house and all the love and memories shared there through out the years. It gives you that real sense of “home”. My grandmother passed away in 2003, but one of her favorite things to do was bake. As I was telling my grandpa about our new adventures in blogging & baking, he brought out her old cookbooks (her true pride and joy) for me to take a look at. I spent almost an hour drooling over and jotting down recipes until I stumbled upon an entire section devoted to lemon-inspired goodies… I was in HEAVEN! I immediately text my mother-in-law to tell her we HAD to make our final lemon dish one of my grandma’s favorites, Lemon Chiffon Dessert! (And how perfect was it that the name was one we had used for our delicious rum drink!?)

So, our final lemon inspired post this month is my Grandma’s Lemon Chiffon Dessert hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 C. Flour
  • 1/2 C. Oleo (Similar to Crisco)
  • 1/4 C. Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 C. Chopped Pecans (We mixed it up and used almonds instead)
  • 1 Pkg. Lemon Chiffon Pie filling (Stove-top brand works best)
  • Whipped Cream

Directions:

  1. Mix four, oleo, brown sugar and pecans.
  2. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes on cookie sheet.
  3. Cool, stir. Save small amount for top.
  4. Press remaining mixture in bottom of 8 x 8 x 2 inch glass pan.
  5. Make pie filling according to package. Put on top of pecan mixture.
  6. Cool 2 hours (at least).
  7. Optional: Spread with whipped cream. Sprinkle remaining pecan mixture on top.

-A

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Lemon Linguine & Roasted Shrimp

Lemon Linguine & Roasted Shrimp

This recipe reminds me of when I first made a basic pasta dish, and the recipe came from a 4 year old.When my son was in preschool, the teacher decided the mother’s day gift for that year would be a cookbook from the children’s recipes; so the children told the teacher their favorite recipe, and she typed the recipes for the cookbook. Cookie recipes were baked at 10 degrees for 2 hours, and cake ingredients included jelly and 5 dozens eggs; I’m sure you can imagine the cuteness of this cookbook.But, this one little boy shocked the mom’s with a great basic pasta dish! He said to boil the noodles in water and drain them, poor melted butter over the noodles, sprinkle garlic powder and Parmesan over noodles, and toss together. And, I said to myself why haven’t I thought of that! The cookbook was made 20 years ago, and my dinner sides at that time mostly included potatoes, and potatoes… and more potatoes. If you have a Scottish or German background you’ll understand – ha!This Lemon Linguine & Roasted Shrimp recipe is one of my favorites, and we wanted to share it with you to make for your loved ones. It’s easy to make, and super delicious!!

Ingredients:

  • 1 (8-ounce) package linguine
  • ½ cup of finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup of sour cream
  • 4-6 tablespoons of grated Parmesan (some for the sauce & some for topping)
  • 1-2 tablespoons of milk
  • 1 ½ teaspoons lemon-pepper seasonings
  • ¼ teaspoon salt & ¼ teaspoon of pepper
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice & ½ teaspoon of sugar mixed together
  • Lemon zest from one lemon
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped chives for topping
  • 20-25 shrimp (no tails or shell)
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil

Directions:

(Roasted Shrimp)

  1. Preheat oven to 415 degrees
  2. Clean & pat dry shrimp with paper towel, and place shrimp in bowl, add salt & pepper, and olive oil, toss together, place shrimp on sheet pan and roast for 6-8 minutes.

(Lemon Linguine)

  1. Cook linguine according to package directions.
  2. In a skillet, cook onion and garlic in butter, stir repeatedly until tender, not brown. Stir in sour cream, Parmesan, milk, lemon pepper, salt, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Cook and stir for about 2 minutes. Turn heat down to lowest temperature, and stir in linguine to sauce mixture, and then add shrimp. Top with Parmesan and chives. Serve warm.

-L

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Thank You!

We just wanted to say we are so excited about all the recipes we have recieved over the week/weekend. Thank you to all of you that shared your favorites with us, we can’t wait to get into the kitchen and start baking! Stay tuned for our next post as we share our top 3 choices and some fun table decorating ideas to finish out our lemony goodness month.
Also, if you haven’t already, be sure to click the follow us button on the right side of our blog so you can recieve our updates via email, we are so thankful for all the support and love so far!

Loralee & Amanda

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Lemon Spa Retreat

Lemon Spa Retreat

Are we screaming for relief with the rising temperature this past week?  We don’t like the humidity either, yuck!  How about a cool and refreshing homemade lemon sugar body scrub to cleanse and exfoliate your body?  We made this body scrub, and couldn’t believe how delightful it was; the aroma was magnificent!  We guarantee you’ll tingle all over after trying it! This recipe fills a bit more than TWO 16 oz Mason Jars.

Mix Together –

  1. 5 Cups of Sugar
  2. 1  Cup of Olive Oil (We used extra virgin olive oil, but canola oil works as well and it is just as moisturizing)
  3. Add  7-8 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice
  4. Spoon into desired containers (It may be a bit runny as the sugar and oil settle but just give it a little mix and its ready to use!)

That’s it!  The Lemon Sugar Scrub is ready to use or give!

Do you have a favorite lemon inspired recipe or project that you would like to share?  If yes, email it to us at  – whenlifegivesulemons@yahoo.com, and we will post it on our blog.  Invite 5 of your friends to email us as well.  Please submit no later than Sunday, 07/22/12.