Hello There...

 

I'm Diana.

I like to create pretty things and sweet treats, collect vintage finds, & build a beautiful life.

You can read more about me here.

SideNote

 

Everything on this page is original content that was written and photographed by me. Anything that I use as inspiration or ideas will be linked in the posts, &I hope that you will do the same.

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Monday
Oct072013

Peanut Butter Chocolate Cupcake Recipe

In celebration of Tim's birthday weekend last weekend, I made some Peanut Butter Chocolate cupcakes for a family birthday party. Chocolate and peanut butter are a classic combination and usually, quite a crowd pleaser. Making cupcakes from scratch is really just as simple as making them from a box, but they taste a thousand times better. And this peanut butter frosting is a killer.

Chocolate Cupcakes

Yields 24 cupcakes

  • 1 1/2c granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 2c flour
  • 3/4c cocoa powder
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1/8tsp salt
  • 2tsp vanilla
  • 1c buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 and place liners in a cupcake pan.

Cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, Combine. Add vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add dry mixture to the butter mixture, alternating between dry and buttermilk. Only mix until combined so you don't overmix. Overmixing=dry cupcakes.

Fill each cupcake liner with until 3/4 full. Bake for 15-17 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

Peanut Butter Buttercream

Yields enough for 24 cupcakes 

  • 1 1/4c creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2c softened butter
  • 2c confectioners sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp milk, as needed 

Cream together peanut butter and butter until fluffy. Slowly add sugar and vanilla until combined and there are no more lumps. Add milk as needed to thin frosting until it's smooth enought to easily pipe through a piping bag. Be carefully not to thin too much.

You can either apply frosting with an offset spatula, or pipe onto cakes. I used a large star tip to pipe these.

If you wanted to make these extra special, cut out the center of each cupcake and pipe the peanut butter buttercream into the center. Then, top with a chocolate buttercream! Easy peanut butter cup cupcakes!

Happy celebrating!

Friday
Oct042013

Glitter Pumpkin DIY

If you've been on my blog before, you know that I love a simple DIY and these glitter-painted pumpkins are just that. These probably don't even warrant a tutorial, but they are a great way to spice up your growing pumpkin collection (you don't have a growing pumpkin collection? That's just me? Bummer...) or use for a table or mantle centerpiece. Here's what you'll need...

Pumpkins, Glitter Paint, and a Paint brush. See told you this was simple.

Use the paint brush to paint a thin coat of glitter paint over half of your pumpkin. Sit the pumpkin on the non-painted side and lean it on its steam until dry. You'll need 3-4 coats of paint, depending on how much bling you want your pumpkin to have.

Once you've let your last coat fully dry, repeat the painting with the other side of the pumpkin to get full glitter coverage. Let dry and that's it. Bam, glitter pumpkin.

As I said, I currently have a collection of pumpkins on our bookcase because I love all the different size, shapes, and colors that you can get pumpkins and gords in. Each year, I tend to buy a bunch of different ones to group places around our apartment and these gold glitter ones are perfect to mix and match with. 

Painting pumpkins might be an addiction that I just uncanned...I'm thinking chalkboard paint next. (!!!!!)

Wednesday
Oct022013

October Goals

It seems strange that October is already upon us. I keep mentioning it, but as much as I love summer, the transition into fall is just magically over here in the Philadelphia area. The weather has been pretty awesome lately, and I hope that doesn't change for a while. As I write this, I am starting to feel a sore throat coming on and I'm not ready to break out my pea coat anytime soon.

Tim and I gave Insanity a serious go, but it wasn't right for us. Tim was seeing better result from going to the gym everyday and I was having a hard time with the time commitment and not seeing great results either. And I think it might have been a bit too intense for us anyway. But, it got me feeling good about dedicating some amount of time a few times a week to working out. I'm not very good at going to the gym, even though we have a really nice one in our apartment complex, so I've been switching between a few workout DVDs, and running outside. Trying to fit it into my life has been a challenge that I don't feel like I've beaten yet. Here's some goals for October...

  • A major Fall cleaning of the apartment. I really love the feeling of success when you have a freshly cleaned home, and we've been slacking a bit on this. Excited to work this into my monthly plan.
  • Start Christmas shopping. Does this sound crazy? I think it might. I really want to try and not pull too much from my savings account this Christmas, so planning and shopping early to spread out purchases is a must. Plus, I always enjoy the feeling of being "on top of things."
  • Focus on healthy living. I've been talking about this a lot, but hopefully one day it will stick. Hoping to exercise 2-3 times a week and focus on eating better meals.

Here's to a lovely October!

Monday
Sep302013

A Fun Fall Round-Up

Now that my scarves and boots are out from their boxes, I'm ready to fully embrace fall in all it's jean-jacket, pumpkin-spice, sock-wearing goodness. I wanted to throw together a little round-up of a bunch of recipes that are perfect for chilly fall nights and DIYs that are great for getting into that fall spirit! 

I feel like I need to add a disclaimer that some of these posts include photos that are just awful. Happily, my photography has gotten much better since I started this blog and that is very apparent when you look back at some past posts. 

Creamy Pumpkin Pie! What else do you need. You can just stop reading here.

Snickerdoodle Cupcakes. These are perfect coupled with a cup of tea and some great TV.

These Chalkboard Speech Bubble Mugs make all hot beverages better. Truth.

Apple Cranberry Pie is a great dessert to take for Thanksgiving or any other family/friend dinner-gathering. A great twist on a traditional apple pie.

These Tile Coasters are so simple to make, you can make a set for every time of year! Black and orange stripes/chevron for Halloween?!

Spiced Hot Apple Cider is one of my go-to warm drinks while it starts getting chilly out.

Applesauce Cupcakes are my serious addiction. I can't even make them anymore because I'll eat the whole batch. Bake at your own risk.

Make your own Heart Teabags (or any shaped teabags) with some loose tea and coffee filters. Perfect for the fall weather or for a fun hostess gift!

Candy Corn Felt Garland is super easy and really cute. 

Happy Fall!

Thursday
Sep262013

Tim's 26th Birthday

So, yesterday was Tim's birthday! He played a gig with the band he's in. There was surprise cupcakes after. And a late dinner with pumpkin beer. Tonight I'm making a nice dinner of things he enjoys and Saturday we are celebrating at some local bars with a group of friends. Just thought I'd give him a little shout out to the swellest guy around. :) 

Hope you have some lovely weekend plan! 

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