String Lights Done Right, Decorating. Finds & More

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Follow my blog with Bloglovin Last week it got a little pinteresty in my new apartment.

After utilizing some unconventional wall hanging techniques this was the result.

So without further ado...

String Lights Done Right

  • Mini LED string lights (they don't get as hot as regular strand lights)
  • Extension cord
  • A mechanical timer
  • Sewing pins or small nails
  • A small hammer 
  • Tape
  • Clothespins (optional)
  • Pictures (optional)
  1. Begin by taping the lights where you want them on the wall. Then, take a big step back and make sure they look even and centered.
  2. Now take a hammer and nails or sewing pins and gently hammer one in at each turning point of the strand. I prefer sewing pins because they leave holes that are barely noticeable, however there may need to be more than one pin placed at each end because the weight of the lights can be a little much for just one pin.
  3. Set up and plug the lights into your mechanical timer. Admire your work.
  4. Last and optionally, use clothespins to hang your favorite photos/magazine clippings/whatever.

My favorite timer is linked in the supplies list. I highly suggest purchasing it because it can be set to turn on for a 30 minute intervals or longer, and at one or more times a day.

Here are some of my other apartment decoration favorites.
An Eiffel tower wall decal, a lovely mirrored tray for my perfumes and candles, and of course sticky wall stars because I am still a 12-year-old at heart.
-Eiffel tower wall decal found here

Disclaimer: This post was not sponsored by Target. I just really like shopping there.

Not Quite Panera's Potato Soup

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Yesterday I decided to break all the rules and make a warm soup in the middle of summer.

This recipe was created about 4 years ago when I was attempting to duplicate Panera's potato soup. I had already tried several online recipes, but none could match the taste of Panera's soup.

Taking matters into my own hands, I tried to replicate the recipe. It still didn't end up like Panera's soup, but my family loved it.

This particular recipe is only about 300 calories per serving, is a little spicy when cayenne is added and like most soups, tastes better the next day. Cayenne pepper is the secret ingredient in pretty much everything I make. Add as little or as much cayenne as you would like.

Servings: 8

  • 5 large potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 32 oz. chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 16 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. ground white pepper
  • 4 dashes garlic salt
  • 1 cup milk or cream
  • Cayenne pepper
  1. In a large pot combine potatoes, spring onions, chicken broth and water. Bring to a boil, then leave over medium heat until potatoes are softened.
  2. Begin adding cream cheese by gently adding and stirring a little in at a time until it dissolves.
  3. Add ground white pepper, garlic salt and cayenne pepper. Slowly add milk or cream, do not allow lumps to form. Add salt if needed.
  4. Allow to boil until cream cheese and milk are thoroughly dissolved. If soup is not thick enough use a whisk to break apart the potatoes.
  5. Allow soup to cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with turkey bacon and cheddar cheese.

Happy potato peeling!

From Diamonds to Sand