Kitchens Are The Hearts Of Our Homes

I have had a crazy few weeks with school wrapping up....summer beginning...and my own schooling taking off.  When I get overloaded in one area of my life and still feel a need to create, the easiest way to get a burst of creative sunshine was to make something new for an area of my home.  This past month it has been my kitchen!

Since my kitchen is the heart of my home and where I spend the most time...it was the first place in my home to get a little attention.  I thought I would take this week to share a few ideas and DIY's for projects you can whip up fairly quickly to share a little love with the heart of your home!

Today's DIY is the jars on my counter.....I re-purposed some jars that I had in my cupboard and purchased a couple of extra's at Walmart for a few bucks.

For the jars with the tin lids, I painted with spray paint and drilled a small hole through the lid and added some coordinating knobs that I found at my local Hobby Lobby.  The labels I purchased from a company called The House of Smiths for $15.00 for a set of five labels.  I love how easy they were to apply and the little pop of fun it gave my kind of boring baking stuffs.

I also ordered the Kitchen Aid decal for $12.00.....which made my red mixer very happy!!!

Sometimes it takes just a little pop to make something old and worn look new and fresh!  I hope you go and check out the House of Smith's shop and find a few ideas for adding labels to some of your old and worn things!

All Joy,

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Whoopie Pies

For Father's Day I wanted to try something totally different for dessert and had just watched a program on Whoopie Pies and bakeries that sell nothing but Whoopie pies...they must be good huh?  The pictures of all the colors and flavors made our mouth's water!  For those who don't know what a WP is...it is two little cakes of moist goodness with light sweet frosting sandwiched in between.

As I was shopping for a few last minute Father's day gifts...there is was...a Whoopie Pie pan!!!  What a coinkedink.  Basically it is a shallow wide muffin pan...in fact it looks likes muffin tops.  Anyways, I grabbed it up and headed for my kitchen.

The recipe that I have added is the one that was with the pan made by Wilton Industries....which is the start of my new obsession.

Whoopie Pies

1 Stick of Butter
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon of real vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
Cream Cheese Frosting (See recipe on site)

Preheat oven to 350.  Lightly spray non-stick whoopie pie pan with non-stick spray.  In mixer beat butter, egg, sugar and vanilla until well combined.  In another bowl sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and soda, and salt.  Add to dry mixture.  When it is well incorporated add the buttermilk.  Mix on low speed until everything is combined.

Spoon out 2 tablespoons into the pan cavities and spread batter to sides.  It should be 2/3 full.  Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until the top of the cake springs back when lightly touched.  Let cool in pan for 8 minutes.  Once they are cooled add the cream cheese frosting.  

Makes 12 whoopie pies!!!!

Our family loved these little tastie chocolate "pies"...and we are already planning on the chocolate peanut butter ones for this weekend!

All Joy,


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The Chicken Coop's All Done

A year ago when we decided to raise a few chickens, I asked Mike to build me a chicken coop like the one I had on my grandparent's farm where I grew up.  I loved the red little chicken coop that was originally a milk house...then a play house for my aunts...and then a chicken coop.

The Lyke Farm Chicken Coop

Occasionally...or often it was my job to feed the chickens in this little red house...I loved walking in and gathering a few eggs....hated the smell...but loved talking to the chicks.

Last month when I went to Seattle to visit our daughter's Camilla and Brandy and their little families, Mike called to tell me that he had finished our little red coop....I was dying to see the pictures and was even more excited to come home and see what he had made for me and my ten little hens....

My New Coop

I couldn't believe how cute it was or how much it looked like the one on the family farm in New York.  What a special treat to come home to!  So.....to reward my husband for his incredible gift....I got him three little ducks...

Maggie and Tina with the New Ducks

....now he needs to finish the water feature in the back yard!  See the reasoning behind my madness?  It has been a fun and eventful summer already and we still have a few months to go.

I am working hard on my school work at BYU and have started a blog for the family history work that I am doing called Carrots & Peas.  There are a few new sewing projects that I have finished and a ton of DIY projects too!  I will be sharing the photos and how-to's in the next few weeks.  

I hope where ever you are you are enjoying the fresh air and sunshine!  Off to the pool with the boys.....

All Joy,


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