We Got a New Roof! A Comprehensive Guide to Everything You Want To Know About The Process

We Got a New Roof! A Comprehensive Guide to Everything You Want To Know About The Process

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that we had a thrilling week with the addition of a new roof and the removal of FIVE layers of roofing material. This project was a long time coming and has been the topic of many discussions in our household. So, I’m here to give you all the details from picking a color, finding a contractor, and the cost. Hold on to your seats - roofing is very exciting.

Read More

My Favorite Gardening and Landscaping Tools

My Favorite Gardening and Landscaping Tools

If you live somewhere with seasons, you probably find it odd that I’m sharing a gardening post in October. You’re probably bundled up preparing for cold weather and barren (yet gorgeous) snow-covered landscapes. However, fall is planting season in San Diego. The temps are still in the 80s here, but once it gets chillier, all of us wide-brimmed-straw-hat-wearing-folk are going to be out in the front yard enjoying one of the prettiest seasons. Here are my favorite gardening and landscape maintenance tools!

Read More

Cutting the Cord (Literally) on the Landline Phone For Improved Curb Appeal

Cutting the Cord (Literally) on the Landline Phone For Improved Curb Appeal

Over the years, our house gained a few additions in the technology department. It has always had electricity, but then it got a phone line, and then a cable line, then another phone line, then satellite, then another cable line to route to another room, and so on. By her 100th birthday, our house had wires, conduit, and cables on every side of her. Naturally, I wanted all of this visual clutter gone. Here’s what I did!

Read More

My Go-To Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

lemons mer-0080.jpg

Happy New Year! Everyone's new year's resolution was to eat more desserts, right? Well, for those of you aiming to up the pie intake, here's a recipe for you inspired by yesterday's lemon haul. The tree in our front yard was weighed down by lots of citrus, so I plucked most of them off and spent a few hours squeezing the lemons. Check out a video of the process I made in my Instagram Stories. I now have enough juice to last us through 2018 - and probably into 2019!

lemons2-0090.jpg

This is my go-to lemon meringue pie recipe that I adapted from three different recipes and then tweaked throughout the years. Ross' grandmother reminds me each time I serve it, that she normally hates anything with lemon, but she loves this pie.

Ingredients

Crust:

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
¾ cup ice water

Filling:

4 large egg yolks
1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cornstarch
1 ½ cup boiling water
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon lemon zest

Meringue:

4 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon lemon juice
6 tablespoons sugar

Prepare the crust

Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Using a pastry blender (or, a cheese grater - thanks, Joy the Baker!) incorporate the cold butter until the mixture looks like coarse meal. You want large bits of butter! Drizzle in the ice water and combine with your hands. Dump the mixture onto a floured work surface then knead into a ball. Cut the dough in half and shape into two 1-inch thick disks, wrap in plastic wrap (or a more sustainable wrap) then pop in the fridge for at least an hour.

Roll out one of the dough disks (freeze the other and use another time) on the floured work surface and roll (I like a french rolling pin) out to fit into a 9-inch pie pan. Put into your pie pan of choice (I like ceramic pans), poke the bottom with a fork a few times, then decorate the edges as you like. Line the crust with parchment paper and fill with pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the pie weights and cook longer until the crust is golden. Set aside and let cool.

Prepare the filling

In a large sauce pan, whisk the sugar, salt, and cornstarch. Whisk while gradually pouring in the boiling water. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture becomes thick and translucent. Turn off the heat, place a dollop of the mixture into the bowl with the egg yolks, and mix together to temper the eggs. Mix the eggs into the mixture, turn on the heat to medium, and stir until you see large breaking bubbles. Remove from heat and mix in the lemon juice, zest, and butter. Set aside to cool.

Prepare the Meringue

Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites, vanilla, and lemon juice until soft peaks form. Continue to beat while gradually adding the sugar until stiff peaks form.

Prepare the pie

Pour the meringue mixture into the crust. Dollop the meringue on top of the filling and use two spoons to create peaks with the meringue. Be sure to spread the meringue all the way to the edges touching the crust so it doesn't shrink. Put the pie in the oven under the broiler for a couple of minutes to toast the top of the meringue, or use a culinary torch if you're fancy.

lemons mer-0081.jpg

That's it!

This is one of my favorite pie recipes that I enjoy all year long thanks to my wintertime efforts freezing all of the lemon juice. A few products that make the lemon harvesting so much better are the electric citrus juicer (mine is discontinued but that one has great reviews) the magical ice cube tray that you can store in the freezer sideways, the juice jars to store the juice waiting to be frozen - or freshly made lemonade, and you can't forget the strainer to remove pulp. You can see my whole process in my Instagram Stories!

Do you want more recipes from me? Or, would you rather me stick to home design and renovations? It's okay, you can be honest.

Here's to a year of citrus and pie! Happy 2018.

Weekly Roundup

Domino compiled a collection of some gorgeous wallpapers for spring and I think this floral one from Sandberg Wallpaper's Brunnsnäs Collection is my favorite. 

On Wednesday, I shared the story of our floor refinishing. We hired the job out, but it's totally DIY-able. Cathy and Garrett of The Grit and Polish did it by themselves and boy, do those floors shine!

Last week, I asked you to weigh in on whether or not I should re-paint the kitchen cabinets a deep green. The votes are split, so I don't know what my plan is, yet. With color on my mind, I was taken aback by this house in a nearby neighborhood that hit the MLS this week. Wowza!

Colorful-house-in-golden-hill

Michaels is having a killer sale on frames right now, including online. Alternatively, if you need custom framing, here's $10 off your first order at Framebridge.

I've watched every.single.one of Casey Neistat's videos, so I've developed a crush on his wife and her entrepreneurial, no-nonsense, sarcastic spirit. Resource Magazine featured her so I can't wait to get my hands on a copy. I searched all around town for the latest edition but couldn't find one, so I read the preview online. Candice and Casey are each highly driven makers - truly inspiring for this couch potato.

I'm not a big clothing shopper, but I did get some new shoes this week. I've been wearing Birkenstock clogs for ages so these are a major upgrade in the style department. And yes, those are technically men's shoes, but so what - plus, my feet are too big for lady shoes. 

We went to the movies for the first time in probably two years (I've mentioned I'm a homebody, right?) to see Get Out. It was exceptional. I can't stop thinking about it, and I can't stop listening to this Childish Gambino song that was featured in the film. Speaking of songs in movies, I'm also digging this song by Michael Kiwanuka which plays during the opening of the show Big Little Lies.

Spring has sprung so the front yard is gaining new blooms. San Diego is still getting much-needed rain which is making the fresh plantings very happy. The Arabian lilac is one of my favorite new plantings with its half-purple and half-green leaves.

Happy Friday!