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Friday, September 27, 2013

Another Successful Dinner

It might still feel like summer in Dallas, but I'm trying to trick mother nature. If I make cold weather recipes the temperatures will go down, right?! Wrong! I made Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili the other night and it's still going to be 90 today! Blah! At least it felt like fall in my kitchen! 

I adapted the recipe from here after seeing it on Pinterest. Some ingredients I omitted or substituted and I'm so glad I did because it was pretty spicy. 

Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 16-oz can black beans
  • 1 16-oz can kidney beans ( I omitted these) 
  • 1 8-oz can tomato sauce
  • 10 oz package frozen corn kernels
  • 2 14.5-oz cans diced tomatoes w/chilies ( I used 1 can of Rotel and 1 can of diced tomatoes)
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 24 oz (3-4) boneless skinless chicken breasts ( I used tenders)
  • chili peppers, chopped  (I omitted this)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (I used dry cilantro) 
  • 1 8-oz can of water
    Combine everything in a slow cooker. Place chicken on top and cover. Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours. Half hour before serving, remove chicken and shred. Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in. Top with Fritos, cheese, sour cream, and avocado! 

    This recipe even got the hubby's approval so I know we will be trying it again in the future! 

    Wednesday, September 25, 2013

    An Entry Way Update

    Yesterday I worked with a client that just recently moved into a new home. She has a gorgeous foyer that was a blank slate and screaming for some warmth and personality. You can see she already had a table that fit the area perfectly, but she just didn't know how to style it. Does that ever happen to you? Do you find yourself staring at the area over and over again not knowing even where to begin?

    We talked several times and discovered her love for decorating for the holidays. She's really into fall and wanted neutral pieces that can transition through each season. 

    Here's how the space was transformed! We used 2 art pieces that she had sitting in a pile and they instantly added a spectrum of warm tones. I stuck to a neutral lamp with a burlap shade to add texture. The area needed lighting and it will be so cozy at night! 

    We used a few frames to keep the area personal, and a golden vase with branches to add height and a natural element. 

    The white pumpkin and acorn tray will transition through fall, then she can easily replace them with pieces for Christmas. I suggested adding a few decorative trees, a vessel filled with ornaments, or even a few metallic items to add some sparkle. She can also trade out the branches for some with cranberries.  A few minor changes and she's set for another holiday season. 

    Do you keep the holidays in mind when styling a space? Do you prefer neutral pieces that can transition or do you change up the whole area each season? 

    *For help with transforming a space in your home, email me @ alivedinhome@gmail.com* 

    Monday, September 23, 2013

    Cozy and Sophisticated Office E-Design

    When designing an office you don't have to stick with traditional office pieces. This client wanted to keep her traditional desk, and bookcase, but mix in other patterns and prints to keep it casual, yet sophisticated and fun! She mentioned her love for chevron prints and fluffy rugs so that was my jumping off point! 

    You can see the space has nice tall ceilings and plenty of natural light. It was basically a blank canvas with great bones for me to design. Both chairs were replaced with comfortable seating. 

     Last week Benjamin Moore's Taos Taupe went up on the walls and it is already warmer. 

    My client, being the rockstar she is, has everything ordered and on the way so I'm sure I'll be sharing a completed office with you in no time! 

    Does this look like a space you would want to work in? 

    *Out of respect for paying clients I don't share sources.* 

    Wednesday, September 18, 2013

    What's For Dinner

    Do you find yourself scrambling through the kitchen daily trying to figure out what's for dinner?! I do, and we never have enough ingredients for most recipes. So, when I found this chicken taco recipe on Pinterest, I was elated that I only needed a few ingredients. And, surprise surprise, I had most of them on hand! The bonus, it's a crock pot recipe which means easy clean up! 

    Crockpot Chicken Tacos
    Recipe from Tasty Kitchen

    Serves: ~12 people

    1 Envelope Taco Seasoning (I use Old El Paso Reduced Sodium)
    6 Pieces Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts or Chicken Tenders
    1 16-ounce jar Salsa (I used Trader Joe's Roasted Garlic Salsa)
    1 Package of Tortillas (I prefer corn) 

    Dump everything into a crock pot and give it a little stir to blend the seasoning with the salsa. I also added half a cup of water since my mixture was very thick and some diced onion for taste. Cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours. When done, the chicken shreds easily. 

    You can serve the tacos with tortillas, guacamole, lettuce, shredded cheese and/or sour cream. 

    This recipe is a keeper! Fast, and delicious! 

    Tuesday, September 17, 2013

    A Dining Room Makeover

    I have an adorable client who had a bright green dining room that was definitely not fitting her style or personality. She was very eager to get rid of the green and warm the space up. Here's the design I came up with to transform her room. 

    Now, to give you some perspective, here's a shot of the room before it was painted yesterday. 

    And here's a progress shot after the walls were painted. 

    The ceiling got a fresh coat of paint as well. 

    This is truly an example of how paint can make such a huge impact on a space!! 

    I can't wait to see how the whole space pulls together and show you the outcome! 

    Friday, September 13, 2013

    My Week in Instagram

    Happy Friday everyone, or should I say happy Friday the 13th! EEK! We had a busy, but great week and it seems like they are flying by these days! I'm totally not complaining because each week that goes by means we are that much closer to baby girl being here!  

    "What, it's not just a food baby?!"

    This week marked 31 down and probably only 8 to go. We plan on inducing the first week of November unless she comes before then. 8 weeks left means I better get things marked off my baby to do list! 

    My other baby girl started pre school this week and is loving it! Her teacher this year is so warm and friendly! I haven't seen a tear shed yet which is a big accomplishment over last year! She came home yesterday pointing out the letter "A" everywhere as we drove around town. I'm even more impressed she's actually listening and learning! Proud mama!! 

    It may not feel like fall, but I'm pretending! I added some pumpkins and a twig of berries to my wreath to jazz up the front porch. 

    Yesterday on a trip to Home Goods I scored a few pieces for myself. It always happens that I go in search of pieces for clients, then boom, something jumps out at me that I can't resist! 

    So honestly, I've been on the hunt for matching buffet lamps and I'm absolutely thrilled with these. What struck me is the acrylic base! Silly, I know! It's the little details though that make an impact! 

    And hello horse statue. I was very close to purchasing one at Z Gallerie over the weekend. Boy am I glad I didn't spend $60 on it because I found the exact one yesterday for $30 at Home Goods! Big score!! I did however pick up the frame pictured for $10 on clearance. 

    What do you think of the new set up? Ignore the ugly builders fixture reflected in the mirror. One thing at a time, right?! I see crystals in my future though! 

    Did your week fly by like mine? What did you accomplish? 

    To see more of my life through Instagram follow me here

    Enjoy your weekend!! 

    Wednesday, September 11, 2013

    A Surprising Find

    Sometimes when I'm looking for one thing I unexpectedly find something great! Don't you love it when this happens? While perusing Target online I ran across this piece of fabulousness! 

    This wood and brass cart can look like a similar upscale version after being styled. You just can't beat the $130 price tag when others are easily priced at $500 plus! 

    I'd be interested to see if this looks as good in person as it does on my computer screen. Has anyone seen one or have one in their home? Please share if you do! 

    Thursday, September 5, 2013

    Words of Wisdom

    This holiday week has me all thrown off. I was thinking today would be Wednesday Words of Wisdom, then I quickly realized it's Thursday! Whoops. Anyways, you get a bit of encouragement today! 

    For all of you out there moving, shaking, and conquering, you're a ROCKSTAR!! Keep making a difference and tackling what you love! 


    Yes, we're one day closer to the weekend than I thought!! 

    Wednesday, September 4, 2013

    Autumn Essentials

    How cute is this free printable?! I'm going to print it here and toss into a gold frame to add to my fall decor around the home! 

    The only thing missing from this essential list is college football and animal print! 

    What tops the list of your autumn essentials?

    Tuesday, September 3, 2013

    The Next Best Color?

    While I'm still loving Emerald as Pantone's color of the year, I'm finding myself drawn to shades of purple recently. 

    I am especially liking pale shades such as lavender or lilac paired with grays and neutrals. This is a color that I have not used in my own home yet, but could see it happening in small doses to add a feminine touch. 

    Is is possible that a shade of purple could be the next best thing? Maybe we will see a plum or lavender as the next color of the year? It would be refreshing! 

    Here are some lovely images of purple done right! 

    Have I convinced you yet? Is there any purple in your future?