Sunday, December 29, 2013

A New Year...



These words speak so loudly to me.
Sitting here for six months, idly, 
has been lovely but difficult. 

It's amazing what you hear when you 
just observe and listen.

I look forward to putting these 
hands to work.

I don't know if I should be worried
or excited about the butterflies
I feel in my stomach when I think
about the future.

I know the process will be slow
but so worth it.

One day.





Thursday, December 26, 2013

This is where we live!


I would like to say Thank You to our
County Commissioner, Editor of The Herald and friend, 
Johnny Adams, for taking this awesome video
on Christmas Eve.
This is a beautiful depiction of 
our HOME town.

This is Union Springs, Alabama
and we love it!

Enjoy!


The residents of North Prairie rallied together
to line the streets with these beautiful paper
luminaries once again.
It's been about 5 years since it was last done
and so hopefully this year is the start of
continuing the tradition!

It was chilly Christmas Eve morning as several households,
along with City worker's shivered and filled
the bags with sand and a candle to light up Santa's Runway.

We had a great time!















In case you were wondering, in the video,
our house was the very last one with the Snowman!

Merry Christmas!

xo, Amber

Monday, December 23, 2013

My 2013 Christmas Morning Menu


COFFEE
Scrambled eggs
**Hashbrown casserole**
Bacon
Apple Dumplings 
(since there's no Trader Joe's for
my butter and chocolat croissants-drat!)
COFFEE
Mimosas for me and the Mr.
Sparkling cider for the Jr's.

Hashbrown Casserole has been a part of my 
traditional Christmas morning breakfast  
since my Petunia was two.
So that makes it, 13 years!
And honestly, we never EVER tire of it.

The recipe was given to me from one of my besties 
when our children (us, really)
were in Mom's Club and we did
our regular brunch get together.
Thanks Dorrie!

Since I'll be making this again on Wednesday
 and I wasn't thinking ahead,
I scoured Pinterest for a pretty 
picture and found this blog
with the same ingredients.



This pretty picture is from Miss. Sarah
and I'm glad I found her blog!
I'll be poking back over there and see 
what other yummy things she's made.

To make Christmas morning flow a little
better (and to keep you out of the kitchen)
I get it all ready the night before, so come
morning, I can just pop it in the oven
saving LOTS of present opening time!

Our recipes are very similar so you can choose
which you prefer.

Here's mine:
  • 1 bag of frozen shredded hashbrowns 
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup of Sour Cream
  • 1 can of Cream of Chicken condensed soup
  • one half of an onion, finely diced 
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Topping:
  • one sleeve of Butter Crackers (my preference is Keebler)
  • one stick of  butter (melted)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly spray your casserole dish
or 13 x 9 dish with cooking spray
(do the sides, mainly)

In a large bowl, mix hashbrowns, 
cheese, sour cream, soup, 
onion and salt and pepper.

Pour into casserole dish.

Crush butter crackers in a
large ziplock bag and sprinkle over casserole.

Melt a stick of butter in microwave then
drizzle evenly over butter crackers.

Bake for approximately one hour (uncovered)
or until slightly browned and bubbly. 

Delicious!

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas.

Best wishes and love, 
Amber



Sunday, December 15, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you all a wonderful
Christmas!


With love and gratitude,
the Anderson family
at the French Pressed home
xo

Friday, December 13, 2013

Looking Back

As our home remodel slowly continues, I look back
at old photos, pulling inspiration from here and there.
We are currently discussing how the immediate backyard
 is going to be laid out with outbuildings and our garden.
 I've been pinning inspiration to my garden board and outbuilding board like crazy.

One structure that I must absolutely have
 {and it's agreed upon}
is a studio away from the house.
This old post has really given me
 something to look forward to.

One day, I may have some garden shows and maybe one day
I'll have some technique classes.
Maybe.

Anyone remember this transformation?

This was my new space at the Antique Mall
that we turned from an ugly duckling
into a beautiful swan. 

I REALLY do miss that place....

The Black Rooster's new home:


We finished up our space at
Granny's Antique Mall
in Temecula!

We'll be moving in tomorrow (Thursday) and
I'm sure for a few days after that, too.

Our "Official" Grand Opening will be on
 Sunday, July 8th from 11-2
with Boutique Cupcakes!

Space #17

{OLD NEWS! Don't mark your calendar!}

Here's what we did...

Before:








The striped wallpaper and old carpet
 wasn't quite fitting for
 my Black Rooster Cottage style.

 Ch, ch, ch, changes.....








LOVE how the wallpaper looks!
I was going to use a Toile and
am soooo glad I didn't!
It's a beautiful cream, white, gray and black.

 I will be carrying this line of wallpaper for sale, too.
 I have it on order!
It will be in, in a couple of weeks.







Looks like expensive Wainscot, huh?
{Being married to a Contractor has its perks!}

















We had such a great time doing this.

It took us a total of 12 hours. We had to work
before the store opened then a little
during business hours.

Not bad for 3 days, huh?

Cost?
We spent under $100.
Really.

Almost everything was recycled material!

Mantle~ recycled from a tear out
Mantle Surround~ used the wood from an old cabinet
Trim~ leftovers from jobs (had to buy a little bit)
Crown~ leftover pieces from old jobs (had to buy one stick)
Applique~ new from a dealer at Granny's

I just spent money on the wallpaper,
 primer and (good) paint!
{I didn't peel the existing wallpaper,
I just peeled the loose stuff then primed!}

Guess what?
You can have this too!

My husband is a Licensed Contractor and he's GOOD!
Really, he is. He's very creative, very picky (meticulous) and
 reasonable!

Tell him his wife sent you! :)



Working on this was like putting on my favorite
old sneakers...


Prior to the boys being born,
I was a Home Stager/Realtor.

In the business of "sales",
Perception is Everything!
{I hope it works here!}
~~~~~~~~~
Granny's was very good to
Black Rooster Cottage.
It was an excellent experience
and such an important time
in our lives.

Who knows what the future holds.
Till then,
I am looking forward to creating a new
little space of my own...
in my own backyard.

Have a GREAT weekend!
I need to get my bum in gear and get 
some shopping done!

XO, Amber

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Still Craving Pumpkin

This is a re-run from my other blog,
Black Rooster Cottage.
Since it's the holiday season, I am still craving
Pumpkin and Pecans so,
 I thought I'd share again.

This is a super easy recipe and it 

looks beautiful if you're having or heading
to a party.
Pumpkin Pecan Tassies
This recipe will make 24 Tassies.
  • 1 - 15 ounce refrigerated pie crust (two crust package) OR...
       **My version...I used 2 packages of Athens phyllo cups.
 They are so good with this recipe!
They are very inexpensive, too.
$1.67 for a package of 15 at Wal-Mart.
{in the freezer section where the pies are}
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice {heaping}
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
Preheat oven to 350*
If you are using the pie crust, prep per package directions.
Using a 2.5 inch round cookie cutter,
cut 12 rounds from each crust, equaling 24.
Ease into ungreased mini muffin tins, bottom and sides.
Phyllo cups~ place one in each muffin tin.
1. In large bowl, stir together pumpkin, sugar, spice and salt.
Add egg and stir till combined.
Gradually add milk and stir till combined. Set aside.
2. For Topping, in a small bowl, stir together
 melted butter, brown sugar and pecans. Set aside.
3. Fill each cup to just below the top of the crust (about 2 teaspoons).
Top with a scant 1 teaspoon of pecan topping.
4. For pie crust tassies, bake for 35 minutes or till filling is set.
For phyllo dough, bake for 18-20 minutes.
Remove tassies from muffin cups and let cool completely
on wire rack.
Drizzle with honey or maple syrup just before serving.
These are quick and easy and super yummy!
xo, Amber


The Best Advice...

With so many blogs on home decor,
it's easy to compare oneself. 
Five months of unpacking,
there are still lost boxes
probably in the dark corners
of the trailer under loads of
what-not, with Christmas decor.
Then I came across this while scrolling
through Pinterest this morning. 
Nothing like a good cup of coffee
and some good words to make you 
feel GOOD.


Thanks Michael!

xo, Amber

Monday, December 9, 2013

Pajama Sunday

Since we decided to do Home Church,
Sundays are a good day to stay in your pajamas,
especially if it's rainy outside
{I don't think He judges our cloth}.

And yesterday was the perfect day to
break out the
Gingerbread House fixings too.

I love listening to the kids talk 
about 'life' when they're
working on something that
puts them in deep thought.

It's interesting what comes out of a 
5 year old mouth x 2.

I was the last home builder.
She's not too fancy because
the demolition crew kept 
pushing me to finish so
they could start ripping the 
shingles off, one by one
and then take the walls down.
In other words,
they wanted to eat their creations.

I made them wait till I took
photos...





...And then, they were gone.

xo, Amber


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Monday, December 2, 2013

Meet Miss. Lucy

As of 10am this morning,
our home just became a 
"true" cottage.

We adopted a kitty.

Meet Miss. Lucy...




Mia doesn't quite know what to think of her
as she's only seen the neighbors
cats walking around outside.


Ah, I think she'll be fine.

And so will the Mister.

xo, Amber

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Planning Ahead

I was very excited to receive my 
2014 Catalog from
Murray McMurray today.


What is that?
CHICKS, baby!




I've got the pages dog eared 
and the numbers selected for each
breed we'd like to have.

Of course some Black and Buff Cochins 
shall be included with some other 
hearty layers because there is
nothing quite as pretty
trotting across the yard than
fluffy Cochins.


One of the girls from my old flock of four!

Our order will be divided with 
layers and meat birds.
{Did I mention that I've been on 
YouTube
learning how to properly 
"take out" a bird?}

I'm actually looking forward to 
growing our own meat birds as well
as having home grown eggs again.


So, we still have a coop to build and
with Winter pretty much here, we'll
be waiting to order until the beginning
of February giving us plenty of time
to design the coop and lay out 
the back yard for my garden too.

Hopefully time doesn't fly as fast as it has the 
last several months!

In the meantime, I'll 
reminisce about my old girls...




 




xo, Amber


Tuscany 2007

P.S. I'm starting to think we should have bought a farm.