Thursday, October 31, 2013

Artist Spotlight - Nature Artist Angela Moulton

Illinois artist Angela Moulton has so many wonderful paintings of birds that it was really hard to select a handful to feature today.  I absolutely LOVE her use of color and large brushstrokes which give each painting graceful fluid movement. Lovely and cheerful, Angela's paintings make me smile!

Take a moment to visit Angela's gallery of paintings on her website and Etsy shop, Pratt Creek Art. She's quite a prolific artist and her paintings of flowers and other subjects are equally as wonderful.  You'll be glad you stopped by!

Thank you for inspiring me today Angela!

Images via:  Angela Moulton Daily Painting & Pratt Creek Art

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Dog Lovin' - 23rd Annual Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Every Halloween I look forward to seeing pictures from the Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade in NYC and this year didn't disappoint.  It's a great event that also hosts many local dog rescue groups who bring dogs for adoption.  Such creativity and cuteness in one event and I love that many of the owners dress up with their pups!

Be sure to stop by the Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade facebook page to see many more pics and "Like" their page! For more cute halloween costumes, check out my previous post Best Dog Halloween Costumes.

Are you dressing up your pups this year?  Please send me a pic ... I'd love to see your pup and share with my viewers!  

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade

For tips on how to keep your pup safe this halloween, check out the ASPCA's article here.

Happy Dog Lovin'! 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sweet Indulgences - Roasted Carrot Coconut Mélange Bread {Low-Fat}

Roasted Carrot Coconut Mélange Bread (low fat) recipe

I love the sweetness of roasted baby carrots and always have them in my refrigerator to put on salads or eat as snacks.  I decided I needed to create a new sweet bread recipe using roasted carrots instead of shredded, uncooked carrots as most carrot bread or muffin recipes call for.  I puréed them in my Cuisinart to give them a texture similar to canned pumpkin, which keeps the bread moist and spongy.  And, I couldn't help but add shredded coconut and raisins.  The result was delicious!  

I love how this recipe turned out and it will now be in my regular baking rotation.  Another bonus is that the loaves look gorgeous with the browned coconut on top.  Hope you enjoy as much as I did!

Roasted Carrot Coconut Mélange Bread {Low-Fat}
recipe by:  Laura Jolna
Prep Time:  45 min (including time to roast baby carrots)
Cook Time:  55 min
Makes:  Approx 2 loaves

  • 1-3/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • pinch of cloves
  • 1-1/2 cups light brown sugar
  • 1 cup puréed roasted baby carrots
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup light sour cream
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup shredded coconut, sweetened + additional for topping
  • To roast baby carrots, line baking sheet with foil and arrange carrots in a single layer and coat with olive oil spray.  Roast at 425° for 35-45 minutes until tender and browned.  Cool completely and then purée in Cuisinart.
  • Turn oven down to 350°.
  • Whisk or sift together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger & cloves in a medium mixing bowl.  Set aside.
  • Using a Kitchenaid mixer or hand mixer, combine sugar, carrot purée, eggs, oil, applesauce, and sour cream;  mix well.  
  • Add flour mixture to wet mixture a little at a time and mix until well blended.
  • Stir in raisins and shredded coconut.
  • Pour batter into two 8" bread loaf pans coated with canola oil spray; sprinkle tops with shredded coconut.
  • Bake for 50-55 min or until toothpick comes out clean.
  • Cool on wire racks for 5 minutes;  remove from bread pans and cool completely.
  • I use the disposable 8" eco-foil or ez-foil bread pans and they make a HUGE difference in how the bread comes out.  With a larger, commercial pan, the edges of the bread tend to cook more quickly before the center is done and half the bread comes out tougher.  The key to evenly moist bread is using two of the smaller disposable pans.  And, I wash and reuse them so they are super economical and environmental friendly!

Don't miss my Pumpkin Bread and Maple Banana Bread recipes from previous posts!
Pumpkin Raisin Bread recipe

If you have the Paprika recipe app and would like to download the recipe, please email me and I'll send it to you in the correct format.
Have a Sweet Day!

Images via:  Bella Bella Vita

Monday, October 28, 2013

Inspiration - Paint Yourself A Whole Lot Of Colorful Days

"Your life is a canvas ... make sure you paint yourself a whole lot of colorful days."

Happy Monday!  Hope you have an inspired week filled with colorful days!

Image via:  Carpe Diem Moments, artist unknown

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Pinterest - My Favorites This Week

Farmer's Market Favorites - Gorgeous Pumpkin Colors

Dog Lovin' - Catch me!

Art - Marc Chagall "Flowers"

Seashells - Urchins by Sue H.

Happy Weekend & Happy Pinning!

Images via:  Pinterest

follow me on pinterest

Friday, October 25, 2013

In The Kitchen - Roast Pumpkin With Feta & Honey

Roast Pumpkin w/ Feta recipe

So many gorgeous pumpkins in the market right now and what to do with them other than decorate?  I saw this recipe for Roast Pumpkin With Feta and Honey from Lorraine Elliott of Not Quite Nigella  blog and couldn't wait to try it.  

I love the sweet and tangy combination of the honey and feta.  I made this last night and added sautéed swiss chard and it was fantastic!  I served it with a maple mustard pork loin chop and actually skipped the side dishes to have a second serving!  I also subbed the sesame seeds for dried cranberries which added an additional chewy sweetness.  Yum! 

Thank you for inspiring me today Lorraine!

Click here to see recipe.  Buon Appetito!

Images via:  Not Quite Nigella

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Artist Spotlight - Impressionist Paintings By Jan Schmuckal

 Impressionist Paintings By Jan Schmuckal
String of Hearts (via

I'm inspired today by Jan Schmuckal's contemporary Impressionist paintings and am sharing a few of my favorites.  The quality of light in each painting is amazing and I just love her use of color.   I find each piece to have a wonderfully soothing and serene quality to them.  Jan resides in Geneva, IL and is the co-owner of an art gallery in a 112 year-old victorian house, Gallery 28.  She also offers her paintings and giclee prints for sale on-line.

To see more of Jan's paintings, take a moment to stop by her Etsy shop, Gallery 28 and visit her website.  She's quite a prolific artist and I'm certain you'll be glad you did!

 Impressionist Paintings By Jan Schmuckal
Lake Lilies (via

"The changing light of day and the moods it evokes 
are the foundation of my oil paintings." 
~ Jan Schmukal 

 Impressionist Paintings By Jan Schmuckal

"Where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art." 
~ Jan Schmukal

 Impressionist Paintings By Jan Schmuckal

Thank you for inspiring me today Jan!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Dog Lovin' - DIY Dog Sweaters {Recycled}

DIY dog sweater
Image via:  Blooming Leopold

Now that the weather has turned chilly, I've been putting a sweater on Lily that I knitted for my previous Jack Russell, Bo Bo.  It's way too big on her and I need to knit a new one just for her, however, that will take some time.  Meanwhile, there are some great DIY recycled doggy sweater ideas I found on Pinterest today.  Love the creativity!

This adorable recycled dog sweater from Blooming Leopold is made from a recycled boy's sweater bought at a thrift shop. Love that!  I'll have to make a trip to Goodwill soon. Click here for great instructions on how make this sweater.  This adorable terrier's name is Bloom.  Lovely!

DIY dog sweater
Image via:  Resweater

This light merino sporty sweater is worn by Spots from Resweater.  Great step-by-step photos and instructions on the website.  Click here to see the instructions and visit the Resweater website.   Great tutorial!

DIY dog sweater
Image via:  Romp Rescue

This adorable sweater from Romp Rescue is actually made from a sock!  Clever idea for the smaller pups or puppies.  Click here for detailed instructions.  So cute!

DIY dog sweater
Image via:  Craft Stylish

I've always loved fair isle sweaters and adorable Gertie is wearing a recycled fair isle made from a sweater vest.  Love it! Click here to visit Craft Stylish and get great step-by-step instructions.

goodwill logo

Happy Dog Lovin' & Dog Snugglin'!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sweet Indulgences - Cinnamon Cookie Dough Bites Recipe {No-Bake}

I love these healthy, no-bake and gluten-free Cinnamon Cookie Dough Bites from Tales Of A Kitchen.  In fact, they are so healthy that it's not fair for me to call them an "indulgence" or even a cookie!  They're more of an aromatic, energy-packed snack that will satisfy a sweet craving.  And, they're super easy to make!

I am a huge fan of cinnamon and use it every day.  Some of the ways I like to use cinnamon are:
  • Sprinkled in my coffee grounds when making coffee and then sprinkled in my coffee cup with milk and sweetener.  It gives my coffee a rich, sweet taste.
  • Sprinkled on an english muffin topped with ricotta cheese and honey (my breakfast almost daily).
  • Sprinkled on my oatmeal cereal.
  • Sprinkled on vanilla frozen yogurt or ice cream.
  • In my recipe Cinnamon Blueberry Balsamic Greek Yogurt.
  • Sprinkled on diced sweet potatoes coated with cooking spray before roasting (400° for 25 min).

Also, be sure to check out my previous post for Cinnamon Apple Cake.  It's a 5-star outstanding recipe!

Click here to visit Tales Of A Kitchen and get the recipe.

Have a cinnamon sweet day!

Images via:  Tales Of A Kitchen

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