Saturday, August 15, 2015

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Don't laugh at the schmutz on the side of my pan...I am no food stylist..we are real people in this house and we eat real food..I could have re-baked one for the pic, but I was busy living my life. 

Preheat oven to 350°
if not using a bread baking stone, grease bread pan

In a medium bowl:
1 C flour
1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp all spice
Pinch Cardamom
Pinch Cloves

Mix with a wire whisk.

In mixing bowl:
1/2 C white sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Mix well (about 2 minutes
 fold in
1 1/2 C shredded zucchini (use medium grater or shredder)

Add in dry ingredients and beat until just combined.

Add in
3/4 C chocolate chips

Bake at 350°for 55-65 minutes until toothpick comes out clean

Place on wire rack for about 10 minutes.
Turn out onto wire rack and cool, or cut right in the bread pan and serve.

I have three of these Stoneware Loaf Pans..they bake an awesome product!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Oyster Cracker Snack Mix

You can mix almost any snacks but here's what I did

1 9 ounce bag of oyster crackers. 
1  11 ounce box of cheese nips. (For some wonderful reason these are half the price of cheese its, and just as good. Thanks Nabisco) 
Half a bag of waffle shaped pretzels. 
1 pack ranch dressing mix
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp dill weed 
3/4 c oil

Mix the snack mixes in a bowl add oil seasoning and spices. Pour into 2 baking stones
Bake at 250° for 30 minutes. Stir or toss around halfway through baking. 

Cool completely before putting into a air tight container. 

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Dying a leather sofa. See the dramatic transformation

We were given this white (beige?) leather sofa set and my sofa has seen better days thanks to my pets.  The leather set was in pretty good shape but the color was loud for me.  A friend described it as "Godfather-like tacky italian" lol.  
I decided if it was going to stay, it needed a makeover.  A local guy dyes sofas, so we called him.  $3000.00!  WHAT!  I could get a new sofa set for that!
My first thought is, if he can do it, so can I.  All I needed was the product he uses and I am sure he wouldn't want to share his secret, so I googled leather dye. has a product, and lots of product support, testimonials etc that looked pretty simple.  What do I have to lose?  If I ruin it, I didn't want a white sofa anyway..and if it turns out, I salvaged a nice set.
This will NOT rub off on your clothing when it is dry and sat on it 15 minutes after dying it. 

I wasn't sure how much I would need so I over bought.  I got two of their large size bottles and a bottle of the primer/clear. It was about 150.00...but they take returns and I didn't even open one of the bottles. I decided to keep it around for future projects though.  about 90.00 for one bottle of mahogany dye and one bottle of clear coat/primer.  One bottle did both sets. I can't believe it. 
 Here are some before and after was nearly impossible to get good lighting but I did the best I could. 
I am SOOOOO happy with the results and it was simple.  It did take a little muscle to get into the cracks (the cushions on this set do not come off so getting down in the cracks took some work but I got a good arm workout).  Anyone can do this. I can't believe someone charges $3000.00 for this. I got it done in one day.  It dries in minutes and is ready for the next coat. Because it was a dramatic change, it took about 5 coats...but it was fast and easy.  

People also dye purses, boots  and even some old dashboards with this stuff (look on their website and also search it on pinterest).  
 I am not affiliated with Rub N Restore, I do not gain anything by raving about their company, except that I hope to turn people on to them, to keep their business booming so I can come to them in the future and know they will be around for a long time.  

I did not use the clear coat on the top.  I like the shine it offered with just the dye..but I may clear coat it in the future.  I did use the clear coat to prime it.  

Love Seat Before
Sofa before
Rub N Restore (I only used one of those bottles of dye for both pieces)
First I cleaned it with vinegar and water. 
I kept a spray bottle to keep my sponge moist but not too wet. 
first coat
first coat
after first coat (we liked the distressed look but kept on going) 
first coat on half and second coat on half

second coat 
third coat
done after 5 coats 
sofa complete
sorry for the glare
I highly recommend this product. Its available in so many colors and you can restore yours to the color it was when you bought it, or change black to white or white to black, etc.  

After seeing this, 2 people I know who have white leather sofas that were given to them, want me to help them dye theirs. Why did so many people buy and give away white leather sofas?

I do want to add that I used a hair dryer to get into the cracks and dry it will stick and pull the color off before it dries if you don't.
This will NOT rub off on your clothing when it is dry and sat on it 15 minutes after dying it.