Welcome to My Kitchen: Before and After

I am so excited about today’s post! If you’re new to my blog, I bought my first home last May and have been working on projects off and on since. I posted my Living Room Before and After a few months ago, and today I’m posting my Kitchen reveal!

When I first walked into the kitchen during the house tour, I knew it would be the room that would need the most change–but I couldn’t wait to make it mine!

Before

After

Dining Table | IKEA Dining Chairs | Wayfair Bar Stools | Wayfair
Dining Bench | Amazon

I LOVE the finished product! This is easily one of my favorite rooms in the house, and I love to cook and have gatherings here. The renovation was such a special part for me because so many people helped me to create the space I wanted. My parents, friends, and siblings worked so many hours in this room and I am so grateful for them and their help.

I love this little corner of cookbooks because there is meaning behind these things. The cookbooks are gifts from loved one and memorials of places I’ve traveled. The ceramic utensil holder was made in Portugal and I bought it to remember my travels there. My friends also made the cookbook stand for me at Christmas!

The four major parts of the kitchen renovation were painting, the flooring, countertops, and the backsplash. I knew I would be in this room a lot and having it fresh, airy, and bright was really important to me.

We painted all of the rooms in the house a light grey and kept the trim white. I thought this could bring a little contrast to the rooms, but also not be blank and white everywhere.

I absolutely love the new countertops and decided to go with a light grey quartz material. It’s amazing how much that change alone brightened up the whole space! I was also able to find the same existing floor tiles and one of my friends graciously (super graciously) installed it for me. Thanks, C!

For the backsplash, I chose a clear glass subway tile and light grey grout. I can’t get over how much that also changed the space! Two of my friends also installed the backsplash for me and I’m so grateful for their help. Thank you C & C!!!


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Things I’m Loving Lately | AD

Hi friends! Welcome back to the blog and for another favorites-related post! It’s been a while since I’ve written a post like this and I have a few favorites to share with you. This post is sponsored by Riverdean Watches–thank you, Riverdean!

Netflix’s The Final Table

I was sick with a strain of the flu a few days after Thanksgiving and into the first week of December and spent a lot of time in bed. I also spent a lot of time reading and catching up on Netflix shows. One of the shows that I watched in entirety was The Final Table on Netflix. This show is a cooking competition between the best chefs in the world and each week focused on a different ethnicity of food. This show was so fascinating, inspiring, and definitely worth the binge.

Netflix’s Salt Fat Acid Heat

I’ve been so interested in reading the book Salt Fat Acid Heat by Samin Nosrat and was happy to learn that it had been made into a Netflix special. This show was inspirational, educational, funny, and gave me the travel bug super bad. Samin spoke about her experiences with food, cooking, and taught how to incorporate these essential elements into home-cooking. This show is also highly recommended if you need something to watch!

Riverdean Avalon Watch

Riverdean reached out to me a couple of months ago to ask if I would like to try some of their watches. I’ve been thinking about getting a new watch and was very excited to receive this one! I love the color and the marble design on the face of the watch! It has been the perfect accessory to many of the outfits I wear! Riverdean has kindly offered to give my readers a 20% discount off any orders using the code “LOVEXAMY20.”

Use code “LOVEXAMY20” to get 20% off your order!

RMS Beauty Products

I’ve been trying to switch to all natural cosmetic products and decided to give RMS a try. I’ve heard so many good reviews about this brand and my best friend has also worn their products for years. I am hooked. I bought a concealer and luminizer and love how they look on my skin. I plan on writing a post about “clean beauty favorites” at some point, but I think that I’ll be using RMS concealer and luminizers for a long time.

Boxing

I took a boxing class with some of my friends in the fall and I’m (left) hooked! Haha, jokes! But seriously, this type of workout has been so therapeutic for me and has been really fun. It’s been a really long time since I actually enjoyed working out. I bought a boxing bag for myself and hung it in my garage, so now I can box whenever I wan

Almond Flour Blueberry Muffins |GF, Paleo, DF

 

This past weekend I posted on my Instagram that cooking has become my favorite thing to do in my new house. I find cooking to be a great stress reliever, it’s relaxing, and it inspires me to create new things. I’ve been trying to eat as clean as possible in the last few months and have found a couple of easy and healthy recipes that I make all the time. In particular, I have been making these Almond Flour Blueberry Muffins and they only consist of 4 ingredients! If that’s not easy then I don’t know what is. These recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, and Paleo friendly. 

All you need for these muffins are:

  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup of almond flour
  • 1 cup of blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly coat a muffin pan with coconut oil.

 

46d8d9e9-21ee-4e69-8db4-4d792621477dBegin by peeling the 4 bananas and hand-mashing them or whisking them in an electric mixer. I love my Kitchenaid so much and get so excited when I get to use it. Break down the bananas until the consistency is smooth.

9e01c47a-ba09-444b-8daf-69ae3c6a780cNext, add the eggs and almond flour to the bananas and blend together again until the mixture is smooth. I have been making my own almond flour lately and will probably write a blog post about that soon!

 

Pour batter into the muffin pan. I like to pour my blended mixture into a Pyrex measuring cup so that the batter goes into the muffin pan evenly.

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Next, add the blueberries on top of the batter. I found that it’s easier to add the blueberries in at the end, so that they don’t sink down to the bottom if blended with the batter, and the distribution is more even.

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Bake in the oven for about 20-25 minutes and then let cool. Enjoy!!

 

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August Favorites

Hi everyone! It’s the end of August and time for me to tell you all about the things I enjoyed this month. I have a little bit of food, beauty, and a movie so keep on reading if you want to know what they are. What have been your favorite things in August?

Trader Joe’s Sparkling Water

Drinking water during the summer can get really boring to me so I really like to drink sparkling or flavored water to help make it more interesting. Trader Joe’s came out with some new flavors of their sparkling mineral water that were special for the summer and they are so good! My favorite flavors are Island Colada and Cranberry Clementine.

Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Seasoning

This has been such a yummy seasoning blend to cook with and it really does make everything taste like an everything bagel. My favorite way to use this seasoning this month is in hash browns or roasted potatoes. So good!!

Elizavecca Milky Piggy Kangsi Pack Deep Cleansing Gold Facial Mask

That name though. I found this on Amazon and bought it mainly because it looked super interesting. It applies in a gold gel but then turns white as it dries. I think it does a good job of deep cleaning my skin and pores. Plus, isn’t the packaging kind of funny??

C.O. Bigelow Vanillamint Supreme 2X Lip Shine

Who remembers these lip glosses from years ago? Bath & Body Works just started carrying these again and I stocked up a couple of months ago during a sale. I love that these glosses taste like mint and give you fresher breath. This gloss is completely clear– which I like because I’m not a fan of colored lip glosses.

Stella by Stella McCartney 

I absolutely LOVE this perfume! My cousin used to wear this all the time and I loved how it smelled on her, so I decided to get some of my own. I have been using this very sparingly and I think this bottle has lasted me a couple of years. Stella’s main notes are of rose and amber. I’m going to be really sad when I completely run out of this fragrance but I do think it’s worth the cost because it has lasted me so long.

Gifted (2017)

This was such a good movie. I watched it a few weeks ago and it definitely tugged at my heart-strings. Gifted is about a man named Frank who is raising his child prodigy niece, Mary, after her mother takes her own life. Mary’s father was never in her life and so Frank has raised her all alone from the beginning. Later in the movie, Mary’s grandmother just shows up and fights for custody of Mary, but Frank’s unconditional love is put on display. There was one scene in the movie that stuck out the most to me, because I am an aunt and I completely understand the love that Frank had for Mary. At one point, Mary learns that her biological father is in town and he doesn’t even make an attempt to meet her. Mary is very distraught and doesn’t understand why her own father doesn’t love her. Frank then tells Mary that they are going for a ride and he takes her to the local hospital–just to sit in the waiting room all night. They wait and wait and Mary even asks “how much longer?” After a while, a man bursts through the doors, in surgical clothing, and yells “it’s a boy!” Frank then leans over to Mary and says:

Frank: That’s exactly how it was when you were born.
Mary: This happy?
Frank: This happy.
Mary: Who came out and told everyone?
Frank: I did.
Mary: Can we stay for another?

Ahhhh! That totally made this auntie boo-hoo her eyes out. Being an aunt is the greatest and I can’t even begin to describe that kind of love, but the movie was such a good portrayal.

Love From Amy’s Kitchen: Taco Tuesday 

It’s Tuesday and you know what that means?? It’s TACO Tuesday! It’s been a while since I have done a Love From Amy’s Kitchen blog post, so what better way than to share with you some yummy tacos? This recipe is also for fish tacos, which are so yummy to eat during the summer months. I remember the first time I ever ate a fish taco was in California back in 2007 and I knew my life would never be the same (well, maybe that’s a little dramatic). If you like some fish tacos, and want to learn a super easy way to make them, keep on reading!

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I had Tilapia filets in stock and laid them on a baking sheet covered in foil. I drizzled some olive oil and fresh lime juice on top and then sprinkled on a layer of a sea salt/pepper spice blend. Bake on 400 degrees for about 25 minutes. Once baked, flake apart the fish with a fork to shred it into small pieces.

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I find that soft corn tortillas work best for tacos after they have been pan-fried a little bit. Because corn tortillas are also delicate, and break apart really easily, it’s best to also make your taco out of two stacked corn tortillas. Sprinkle a little bit of olive oil into a non-stick pan and fry the tortillas until you have reached a desired color.

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Toppings for fish tacos can include so many things but I picked sour cream, fresh cilantro, fresh lime juice, cabbage mixture, fresh avocado, and guacamole. I am not a cabbage person but it tastes so good with fish! Mango is another really good topping but I didn’t have any on hand.

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Combine your toppings on a couple of tortillas and chow down!

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Enjoy your Taco Tuesday!

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