Chickadee Says: June 2013

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Fourth Of July Pinterest Favorites

Hello Darlings!

When it comes to inspiration for holiday parties Pinterest is the place to look. In honor of the Fourth of July, I’ve recreated three of my favorite red, white, and blue dishes from my online pinboard!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Do It Yourself: Citronella Candles

Hello Darlings!

One of the most exciting parts of celebrating the Fourth of July is waiting for the sun to set so the fireworks can start. However, tons of bugs tend to swarm at twilight, which drives lots of people crazy (I am super odd and bugs don’t like me for some reason). So, instead of fending off flies you can make your own bug repellant candles that are both gorgeous and incredibly simple to construct!

What You’ll Need:

- Candle Wax (I used 1 pound of soy wax because it is non-toxic and clean burning)
- Candle Wicks
- Essential Oils (I used citronella, lemongrass, and eucalyptus, all known for warding off bugs)
- Jars
- A Pot (I have a pot from thrift store designated for crafts)
- A Spoon
- Super Glue
- A Skewer

1. Use the super glue to secure the wick to the bottom of your jar.

2. Add wax to a pot on low heat, stir until fully melted.

I even have a designated 'crap' spoon for crafts!
3. Add essential oils. I used 10 drops citronella, 5 drops lemongrass, and 5 drops eucalyptus)

4. Pour wax/oil combination into jars.

5. Prop the wick upright using a skewer.

6. Carefully place the liquid candles into the freezer and leave until completely solid, this can take a few hours.

7. Trim the wicks and you are ready to go!

Do you have any fun plans to watch the fireworks this year? Let me know in the comments below!

Remember to follow me on Instagram ,  and like ChickadeeSays on Facebook to get updates, sneak peeks, and lots of pictures of Tinkerbelle!

Also, on July 1st (MONDAY!!!) Google Reader shuts down for good! Make sure to add your email in the sidebar or follow ChickadeeSays on Bloglovin so you don't miss a post!

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Friday, June 28, 2013

Summer Drink Series: Watermelon-Basil Gin Refresher

Hello Darlings!

I am beyond excited about the Fourth of July. I love the holiday- with its fireworks, themed picnics at which it is totally acceptable to eat every red, white, and blue food there is, and celebrations of being free, it is just so very American. So, to express my excitement, I will be blogging every day up until the Fourth, I can’t believe it is next week! Make sure to follow along for some stars and stripes themed fun!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer To-Do List : Denver, 2013

Hello Darlings!

I’m a huge fan of lists; and absolutely adore summer. So put the two together and I do a bit of a happy dance. While browsing Cupcakes and Cashmere, one of the blogs I love to follow, I came across the darling Emily’s Summer To-Do list for this year and knew I had to create one of my own, so here goes (in no particular order)!

One of my favorite summer spots: Cadaques, Spain

1. Explore around Denver with Tinkerbelle!
            Colorado is beautiful. There are so many parks, hiking trails, and quaint little towns under two   hours away from Denver that day trips are very necessary. I’ve already started exploring by taking Tink to the Garden of the Gods in this post!

2. Participate in a fun run 5k!
I wanted to do a color run, but by the time I got my act together it was all sold out (sad face) but there are so many fun runs in Denver this summer I just have to choose!

3. Go craft beer tasting.
            I live in Colorado- self explanatory.

4. Throw a fun party for my birthday!
I turn the big two five on July 18th! And what’s a quarter century crisis without yummy food, fun drinks, and great friends?

5. Attend an event at Red Rocks.
            Summer nights in an amphitheater made out of gorgeous rocks? I think yes.

6. Go to Jazz in the Park.
This sounds like such a fun time. Picnic basket, bottle of wine, and good company equals a fabulous night.

7. Go to a Rockies game.
I’m not a huge baseball fan (hockey all the way!) but I love the atmosphere of summer games. Plus, I live a 12 minute walk from the stadium; you can’t get easier than that!

8. Vegas with the girls!
         We are having an all girls weekend in Vegas in August. I. Can’t. Wait.

9. Go on a Denver food tasting tour.
I am a bit addicted to the Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives show and they have shown so many delicious looking restaurants in Denver. Foodie love.

10. Sunrise yoga in the Botanical Gardens.
Yoga is such a wonderful way to start the day, adding the gorgeous backdrop of Denver’s botanical gardens sounds like heaven!

I brought Tinkerbelle home in June two years ago- Summer is a great time!

What is on your summer to-do list?

If you’re a Denver native did I miss any must-dos ?

Let me know in the comments below!

Remember to follow me on Instagram ,  and like ChickadeeSays on Facebook to get updates, sneak peeks, and lots more pictures of Tinkerbelle!

Also, on July 1st Google Reader shuts down for good! Make sure to add your email in the sidebar or follow ChickadeeSays on Bloglovin so you don't miss a post!
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Monday, June 24, 2013

Meatless Monday: Cranberry Flax Granola with Agave

Hello Darlings!

Have you ever had a recipe idea that you were so excited about and then it doesn’t exactly go as planned? That happened to me this week. This week’s ingredient for Better With Veggies Meatless Mondays From A-Z was flax, and for the longest time I had no ideas for recipes. Finally, I called my mother, “granola bars!” Brilliant idea maman.

 I decided to make vegan granola bars sweetened (and stuck together) with the organic bulk agave syrup that you can get at Sprouts Farmers Market, and then dipped in carob. Sounds fabulous, right? I was most of the way through the recipe I dreamed up and it crumbled. Literally. Bars were just not going to happen. However, the actual granola is incredibly delicious so I made the best of it in all of its crumbled glory.


1 Cup Almonds, Coarsely Chopped
1 Cup Walnuts, Coarsely Chopped
½ Cup Flax Seeds
½ Cup Sunflower Seeds
1 Cup Dried Cranberries
1 ½ Cups Rolled Oats
1 Cup Organic Agave Syrup
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
½ Teaspoon Nutmeg           
¼ Teaspoon Cloves
¼ Teaspoon Coriander
Yogurt (Vegan, Optional)
Carob Chips (Optional)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Place almonds, walnuts, flax, and sunflower seeds on a baking sheet and toast in preheated oven for ten minutes.

3. Combine toasted nuts and seeds with cranberries and rolled oats in a large bowl.

4. In a separate bowl (or a measuring cup like I did) combine agave syrup and all spices. Mix well.

5. Add the agave-spice mixture to the large bowl and combine well.

6. Place the granola mixture into an oven-safe cooking dish lined with parchment paper.
7. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove, and let cool completely.
8. When your bars crumble like mine did make a yogurt parfait! With vegan carob chips melted in a double boiler and layers of yogurt (vegan or dairy) and the deliciously sweetened granola!

What was your biggest recipe fail? Did you figure out how to make it work? Let me know in the comments below!

Remember to follow me on Instagram ,  and like ChickadeeSays on Facebook to get updates, sneak peeks, and lots more pictures of Tinkerbelle!

Also, on July 1st Google Reader shuts down for good! Make sure to add your email in the sidebar or follow ChickadeeSays on Bloglovin so you don't miss a post!
Follow on Bloglovin

Friday, June 21, 2013

Summer Drink Series: Spiked Lavender Lemonade

Hello Darlings!

Happy Summer Solstice! The first day of summer is (finally) upon us. Summer to me is playtime. Gorgeous weather, outdoor parties, grilling, and fun drinks- everything about it just screams fun. I’ve always wished that the ‘big kids’ aka adults with jobs could go on summer vacation just like we all did in school. However, the next best thing is Friday at five o’clock when the weekend starts. How better to celebrate than with a delicious cocktail?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Garden of the Gods: My Dogs Cool Custom Dog Leash Review

Hello Darlings!

Have you ever woken up incredibly early and full of energy for no apparent reason? Strangely enough for a night owl like myself, it was one of those days. So I made the hour and fifteen minute trek down the Garden of the Gods, a gorgeous public park that sits just outside Colorado Springs, with Tinkerbelle riding shotgun sporting a very snazzy custom leash from My Dogs Cool.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Meatless Monday: Roasted Squash and Quinoa Salad with Rosemary-Lemon Vinaigrette

Hello Darlings!

I love when there are sales on squash. With my sweettooth’s  voracious appetite, anything that is sweet *and* healthy is a great find.  Both butternut and kabocha squash varieties are super sweet, healthy, and are delicious roasted (and we know my long-lasting obsession with roasted veggies), so I picked up one of each and decided to base a meal around them. I added filling quinoa, some sunflower seeds for their good fats, and a rosemary-lemon vinaigrette to cut a bit of the sweetness.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Do It Yourself: Photography Light Box

Hello Darlings!

Ages ago I posted on my Instagram that I had constructed my own photography light box, and the darling Meg from A Dash of Meg included me in one of her High Five Friday posts! And then I dropped off the face of the blogosphere. However, back on track, here is the tutorial!

For a while I thought that I was the only food blogger who actually cooked in the evening, and I was a bit jealous of everyone else’s gorgeously lit photographs. However, while browsing the Google+ Food Bloggers Community, I came across this do it yourself light box tutorial. Apparently, food bloggers cheat Mother Nature and create their own daylight, * lightbulb * (pun intended.)

The tutorial gives a shopping list and a few instructions, but when it comes to math and technical building, I happen to be the type of person that needs step-by-step instructions and exact measurements. So, I called in the cavalry, aka my ever-so-handy father (thus the very large and very not-female hands in a few of the photos.) We followed the original tutorial’s general instructions, but used our own dimensions, and changed a few things that I thought would make life a bit easier!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Meatless Monday: Spiced Eggplant Chips

Hello Darlings!

It is 'cook' week for Meatless Mondays from A-Z with Better With Veggies! I decided to try Laura from Sprint to the Table's super simple but super delicious recipe for eggplant chips. Because the full (very brief) recipe is over on Laura's page, and I followed her instructions to the letter (minus the seasoning) this post is going to be very picture heavy, but hey, you really can't go wrong with food porn pictures!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Meatless Monday: Broiled Eggplant Hummus

Hello Darlings!

I am finally back on track and participating in BetterWithVeggies’ Meatless Monday from A-Z! This week’s ingredient is eggplant. Ever so excited, I popped over to Sprouts Farmer’s Market and they had some gorgeous organic eggplants on sale- fabulous timing! I had also been craving hummus, which, for me, is quite odd as I have an (very well documented) aversion to oddly textured foods, so I challenged myself to create an incredibly smooth eggplant hummus. And while hummus is a very simple, very standard recipe, I added a couple of twists and was very pleased with the result!

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