Friday, November 29, 2013

Five Friday Faves - It Can Finally Be Christmas Edition

Happy Friday, friends!
Happy day-after-Thanksgiving, friends!
Happy Black Friday, friends?

If no one has ever wished you a "Happy Black Friday" before, well, there you go.

I hope everyone's Thanksgiving was as lovely as ever. Our day was fabulous. I didn't over- or undercook the turkey and my mashed potatoes were lumpy on purpose. Overall, I'd say it was a success.

And now it's Black Friday. The day after Thanksgiving. This year, November 29.

Forget about shopping. This is the day I officially allow myself to fully embrace the Christmas spirit.

Even though I've been listening to Christmas music since November 1, I don't allow myself to put up any decorations until the day after Thanksgiving. I know, I know, with Thanksgiving falling so late this year it seems like I should have decorated earlier to enjoy the decorations a little longer. And any GOOD blogger has been in Christmas mode for at least two weeks already. But I just cannot. Maybe one day when the blogging insanity has finally and wholly sucked me in will I start Christmassing it up around here in mid-November, but this year is not that year.

And so, today we decorate! Think I can get the hubster up on the roof this weekend to hang some lights?

(Answer: in my dreams.)

In the spirit of the letting myself finally get into all things Christmas and jolly, I present this week's Five Friday Faves--It Can Finally Be Christmas edition. I'll be sharing my favorite Christmas-related pins from the Pinterestsphere this week. Please remember to pin from the sources that I've provided for you under the image, and have a great weekend!

So, anyone go shopping today? Last night? Early this morning? Get any good deals?

**Psst: I didn't do too much shopping today, but if you are, my shop on Etsy is having a sale! 10% off with the coupon code BLACKFRIDAY, which is valid today and tomorrow. I'm only sharing this code on my blog. Woo hoo, pretties for everyone!**

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Giving Thanks

7:15 AM. The calm.

For my husband, who is my anchor and keeps me grounded.

For my daughter, who is my light and is a perfect reminder of how blessed we really are.

For my family, for just being my family.

For our home, which is filled with so much love, warmth, and happy memories already.

For my job, which has taught me so much about adaptability and learning new things.

For my health, so that I can keep up with my rambunctious two-year old.

For the sunrise this morning, since the last two days were awful weather-wise.

For wine, because it is wonderful.

For the turkey I hopefully am not overcooking as we speak.

For my Etsy shop, which gives me a productive outlet for my need to create things all the time and justifies my need to buy supplies when the mood strikes.

For this blog, because I think Denny is tired of hearing about what paint color to choose for the entry hall for the 1400th time.

For you, friends, for listening to my rantings and ramblings.

Happy Thanksgiving, friends. I hope your day is filled with love and light.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving Traditions and A Return to Simplicity

This year will be pretty different from Thanksgivings past. Mostly because I get to do the hosting this year (woo hoo! Any excuse make too much food and drink too much wine!)

Thanksgiving 2011.
A picture of a picture, because I am so full of technology.
Last year, when all we wanted more than anything in the world was to go home and to sleep by 7 PM because we had been in the car ALL DAY, Denny and I vowed that next year we were going to stay home. I would cook and if anyone wanted to come over and join us that was a-OK with us.

So this year, I am cooking my very first turkey (!!!) and hosting 12 people at our home.

For the first time in 10 years, I get to be home on Thanksgiving. I get to watch the parade while I prep the turkey, sit down and catch some football with a glass of wine if I get a 10 minute break in the cooking, make sure Peyton gets a nap in her own bed on her schedule, and not put a single mile on my car.

We are taking it back to simplicity this year and I am pretty darn stoked about it.

Thanksgiving 2011.
Our sweet girl on her first Thanksgiving.
And with that in mind, I'd like to talk traditions. Thanksgiving is one of those holidays that tugs on my heartstrings because it really reminds us to be aware of our blessings and to have a thankful heart.

I also like this holiday because so many people celebrate it in so many different ways.

For some, Thanksgiving is all about parades, football, and turkey.
Or you can say, "Turkey is gross and I hate football, so I make a ham and call it a day."
Or, you can enjoy a movie at the theater and come home and eat lasagna with your family.
You can drive all over God's creation visiting with family and friends all day.
You can take the time to give back to your community by volunteering at a local food bank or shelter.
At dinner, you can have each person at the table share what they're thankful for (which always turns me into a misty-eyed sap. I feel like the Grinch when his heart grows ten sizes since I have so much to be thankful for.)
You can create a Thanksgiving "tree" and have family add what they're thankful for as the leaves.
You can spend your time after dinner playing games and chatting with your family.
You can spend your time after dinner taking a nap.

Stole this from my momma. Thanksgiving 2012.
In case you couldn't tell from the date stamp.
As for me, Thanksgiving is all about giving thanks, counting our blessings, and being with those you love and hold dear (and parades, football, and turkey). Being stressed on a day like this kind of takes the fun out if it. It also doesn't really matter how you celebrate it, and that's the beauty of this holiday.

I am curious, though...what are some of your Thanksgiving traditions? Feel free to share them in the comments!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

It's back!

Close friends and family might know that this blog started because of a particular handmade business I started almost exactly a year ago (because when I first started this blog, I'm pretty sure they were the only ones who were reading...shout out to my OG's!).

I was moving right along, taking orders and planning on jumping into the Spring craft show circuit once I had built up enough inventory.

Then we moved.

And then we decided to get married a month after moving in, and have the wedding AT OUR HOUSE.

So I put my little shop on vacation mode so I could channel my attention toward the move, making our house feel like a home, and the wedding.

And I never took my shop off vacation mode. And it stayed that way for six months.

But that all changed last week, friends! I am back in action and ready to provide you with some fun, affordable accessories, just in time for holiday shopping!

Turquoise and coral silver tone bobby pin set, $6.00
You can check out my shop here. Or check out the link at the top of my page. I'm currently in the process of re-photographing all of my existing inventory and working on some jewelry pieces, crochet items, and home goods and decor so you'll want to check back often :)

On Friday, 11/29, you can take 10% your order with the coupon code BLACKFRIDAY. The code is valid for Friday only, so take advantage of that while you can!

PS: If you're placing an order for delivery within the US that you'll need by December 24th, you'll need to get your order to me by December 17th to allow for proper shipping times based on USPS suggested deadlines and my current turnaround time. For my international customers, your deadline is much sooner--November 29th. If you order after these dates, I can't guarantee that I can get your item to you in time, and that will give me the sads.

Hope everyone is enjoying their week!

Monday, November 25, 2013

A Thanksgiving Tablescape For the Motivated

In blogland, I probably should have posted this last week. You know, because now we're in Christmas phase. But alas, blog friends, I didn't have time to share this with you, what with talking about antlers and new pendant lights, so a tablescape for Thanksgiving had to wait.

I know what you might be thinking: 'But Brittany, if I wanted to see how to pull off a tablescape, I think this would have come in handy last week, instead of THREE DAYS before the main event.'

But friends, this one is so simple if you go and buy a few yards of burlap and a few yards of muslin, you too can pull off this one.

Because, if anything, I am all about last-minute plans.

So here she goes. Please forgive the wrinkled satin (you can iron it, but 10 minutes later it'll be wrinkled again if you don't throw it over your table AT THAT MINUTE), and imagine a 12 foot rectangular table. On the actual day of Thanksgiving we'll have two six foot tables to work with, but my little pedestal table in the morning room is all I had to work with in the meantime.

This year I decided to go navy and gold. It works out because I had the navy tablecloths from our wedding and everything else is either made on the cheap or bought on sale.

I am loving the gold metallic touches of the spray painted pine cones and the chargers. An extra metallic touch is provided by the painted dollar store leaves I used in this project.

The votives are from Michael's that I picked up on sale--40% off. The gold chargers are also from Michael's and picked up on sale for 3 for $2.

I snagged the burlap and muslin from Joann Fabrics using 40% off coupons and used hot glue to create the utensil holders and Stitch Witchery to make the linen napkins. I also have a pretty gnarly burn on my wrist from Stitch Witchery-ing my napkins, which could explain my disdain at using the iron and the totally obvious wrinkles in the tablecloth. Also--satin: why are you such a weird fabric? I just cannot with you sometimes.

I can image a table set for 12 on Thanksgiving with the candles glowing in the votives and the gold adding a nice touch of richness to the holiday festivities. It'll be a pretty fancy table. In its own non-fancy way, because truth be told, we are not a fancy-to-the-tee-set-table family.

If you're in a scramble to figure out how you're going to set your table for Thanksgiving, I hope this gives you some helpful suggestions.

I still haven't finished making my napkins yet, and it's Monday! Nothing like a little pressure to get things done, no?

How are you setting your table for Turkey Day? I'd love to hear all about it in the comments!

Wanna see where I party? Click here for an awesome list of link parties I participate in..

Also linking up to:
Savvy Southern Style
Imparting Grace
Jennifer Rizzo
Get Your DIY On Challenge - The Happy Housie

Friday, November 22, 2013

Five Friday Faves

It's Friday, and can you believe Thanksgiving is officially less than a week away?! Crazy, I know!

Next week I'll share some of my Thanksgiving ideas like (hopefully) a pretty tablescape and some thoughts on traditions. Then I'll jump into Christmas--I know in blog-land it's pretty much the norm to follow the retail schedule when it comes to the holidays (although I think bloggers are a little less aggressive than retail when it comes to keeping Halloween Halloween and not jumping ahead a month or two), but I can't bring myself to start dragging out the decor and crafts, let alone writing about it. Just because Thanksgiving is late this year doesn't mean we should forget about it, people!

(PS: I full intend to put my Christmas decorations up on November 29th, though.)

And now for some Five Friday Faves. You will notice a Christmas pin or two in there; just because I'm not ready in my house just yet or ready to write about it doesn't mean I can't look at all the pretty stuff out there ;)

Please remember to pin from the original sources. I've included the link to the source under the image.

If you'd like to follow along during the week, feel free to check me out on Pinterest here.

Hope you all have a great weekend! Got any fun pre-Thanksgiving plans? I'll be finish up my deep cleaning that I mentioned here. I know, I know. I'll spare you all the excitement.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Small Updates & Holiday Prep in Our Home

I love being able to make changes around the home that have subtle yet noticeable results. With Thanksgiving coming up, I am extra motivated to get some tasks done so we know our house will be in tip-top shape for entertaining and festivities. It also gave us a reason to stop putting off projects that we've been procrastinating since...oh, I don't know...summer?

First up: installing this sa-weeeeeeet pendant light that we got from my brother- and sister-in-law as a wedding gift:

At night.

At 7 AM. Because I love it so.
It's from Target and from the Threshold collection, but it looks like they don't carry it anymore.

It's MUCH better than the old builder's grade frosted pendant we had hanging over the kitchen sink. I don't have any before photos since hubby tackled this before I could take the photos, but here is the MLS photo of our kitchen with the pendant light blending woefully into the blinds.

It's like Where's Waldo. And don't even get me started on the boob light.
This light is actually a plug-in, but my super awesome husband hard wired it for me while he was off and I was working one day. We won't go into details on how that's done because it's one of those things you do at your own risk and we are certainly not ones to be handing out electrical advice, but if you really wanted to find out how to do it you can Google around for some information.

We also enlisted the help of my uncle to add a coat of paint to all of the doors downstairs.

The doors on our closets and powder room were of the pre-primed variety, but had never actually been painted. Since the trim had been painted, the doors always looked gray and dirty against the white of the trim.

The above is an "in progress" photo since my uncle is unstoppable with a paint brush, but you can check out the MLS photo for the sad gray door in all it's glory.

After five years of being naked, I decided those doors needed some paint for the Thanksgiving festivities:

Much better, no? All of the doors on the first floor, including the back of our front door (which has a happy coat of red paint on the front; you can see the finished product here) and both sides of our mudroom door got a coat of clean white paint. That's a total of six doors--two closets, powder room, mudroom, front door, pantry. On the first floor. I feel like that's excessive for a first floor. We haven't gotten to the second floor yet, but they're next on our list.

I love these small changes because while they're not a huge deal, they're juuuuust enough to be noticeable. Especially since so many of the doors downstairs are our in our front hall, they brighten up the space considerably now that they've been painted.

I'm also in the process of deep cleaning our home from top to bottom. Doing all those fun and exciting things like wiping down baseboards, cleaning windows, and (gasp) pulling out furniture and CLEANING UNDERNEATH OF IT. It makes me jump for joy, really.

Just kidding. But the last thing I want is to have the dust bunnies join us for a delicious turkey dinner.

That's what we've been up to in order to prep for the holidays around these parts. Anyone hang any fun lights lately? What's your least favorite part of deep cleaning? Feel free to spill the beans in the comments.

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Feature Wall in Progress or That Time I Practiced Pseudo-Taxidermy

I might have mentioned wayyyyy back when that we had a funny spot above our made-over buffet that needed some attention.

Here is what we were working with back in July:

A blank slate, if you will. I knew I wanted to do something along the lines of a gallery wall, but with less photographs and more dimensional stuff. I thought about empty frames. I thought about plates. I thought about a lot of things, but I knew I wanted something that represented us, but was still a little fun.

Enter laser cut frames, some antlers, and a wooden letter. And here we are, so far:

It's still very much a work in progress, but I'm digging it so far. The H is our monogram, and the antlers were a flea market find I bargained down to $25 from $35 (batting those eyelashes and "This is all I have" gets 'em. Every time.)

I like that the frames add some fun whimsical color while the stained wood of the monogram and the antler mount add some warmth. The two larger horizontal frames will have some photos in them. If, you know, I can ever talk Denny into doing a photo session. We'll leave the smaller ones empty, I'm thinking.

Super fun!

Anyway, back to these antlers. Antlers are huge right now. HUGE. And I love them. They can add such a great touch to any home.

My antlers didn't come mounted to the plaque already; really, all I was bought was the antlers attached to the skull, but getting them wall-ready was a cinch.

If you're squeamish and not into drilling holes into antelope skulls, you can click away now. I promise I won't be mad.

There are kits that are sold online to help you create a mount, but usually for just antlers the piece of skull is hidden behind some leather. I wanted to keep the skull visible. Is that morbid? I hope not.

Anyway, my research turned up a method called the European mount, which is usually done to mount an entire skull plus the antlers. Long story short, it involves drilling holes through the skull and onto your mount. The Google image search is terrifying. You have been warned.

Whew. Here we go.

Here's what I was working with. I grabbed the wooden plaque thing from Michaels and stained it with my favorite dark walnut stain. The antlers, I was told, are from an antelope that is native to Nebraska. Boom. You'll also need a sawtooth hanger, your drill, and some screws.

Arrange your antlers how you'd like them on the plaque, and pre-drill holes through the skull. This will keep it from cracking when you screw it to your wooden mount.

Then you'll want to take your screws and attach the antlers to the plaque. Easy peasy!

I realize that they aren't perfect by any means, but they're a nice rustic touch to our living room and we love it. I also love that they only cost me a total of $30, because you can buy these from Restoration Hardware:

And spend $150. Yowzers.

Another look?  Okay:

Just need some photos in those frames and we are done.

So, anyone else become a taxidermist for the day lately?

Wanna see where I party? Click here for an awesome list of link parties I participate in..

Also linking up to:
Savvy Southern Style
Imparting Grace
Jennifer Rizzo

Friday, November 15, 2013

Five Friday Faves

Woo hoo! Friday is heeeeere!

I'll keep it short and sweet this week, so here are some of things I'm loving this week in Pinterest-land.

Please pin from the original sources--links are under the images!

Happy weekend, friends!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Metallic Leaves on Canvas

I have a Fall Bucket List. I'm doing pretty good at it.

One of the items on my list is to collect and preserve leaves. I have not done so well with that.

But fear not, friends, because I have a pretty fun project up my sleeve that gives you the joy of leaves in the Fall AND metallics and smooshes them all together and then your brain explodes.


But this is a pretty sweet way to add some glam to your Fall decor without breaking the bank.

This project cost me all of $3.00 because I had a majority of the supplies laying around the house. If you don't have a 12 x 12 canvas laying around (I'm sure a lot of people don't) you can grab them on sale at your local craft store, or make sure to use a coupon. All in all, if you are buying all of the materials for the first time, I don't see this costing more than $25.00 (but come onnnn--gold leaves!)

Here's what you'll need:

12 x 12 canvas, or any size you'd like
Pack of leaves from the Dollar Store (I bought three and only used one pack and had a few leaves left over)
Metallic craft paints (I used gold, copper, rose gold, and rust)
Foam brushes
Spray adhesive or a hot glue gun

Here's what to do:

Take one of your leaves and apply a coat of paint of your choice.

It'll be a little streaky at first, but you'll add another coat of paint once the first coat dries.


Once you've got your leaves painted, it's time to attach them to your canvas.

But first, you'll want to paint your canvas so if you happen to leave any bare spots, it'll blend in nicely.

I just took all of my paint colors and painted them on, one by one, until I had layers of each color paint. Let it dry. Like, really dry.

Once that's done, you'll want to take your spray adhesive and mist a nice coat of adhesive onto your canvas. Wait a few seconds for it to get tacky, and start pressing on your leaves. There's no rhyme or reason to this, just stick them on where you'd like them.

Allow the adhesive to dry, and you're done! Feel free to hang it where ever your little heart desires or lean it in a spot that needs a little shimmer.

In a happy accident, I initially planned on Mod Podging them onto the canvas and then applying a coat of Mod Podge over that to seal the leaves flat to the canvas. I couldn't find my Mod Podge when it came time to do this project, but I did find a can of spray adhesive and I'm so glad I used that instead. It really allowed the texture of the leaves to enhance the overall effect of the metallic goodness.

Oh baby.
My canvas is currently hanging out on my buffet, which is all decked out for Thanksgiving.

And that, my friends, is how you "preserve" leaves--but with more sass.

Wanna see where I party? Click here for an awesome list of link parties I participate in..

Also linking up to:
Savvy Southern Style
Imparting Grace
Jennifer Rizzo

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Thanksgiving "Mantel" and Decor in Our Home

Not having to work on Monday due to Veteran's Day totally threw me off on the posting schedule and I forgot to prep my post for publishing this morning. Womp womp. Better late than never, that's what they say :)

One of my favorite things about reading blogs, especially in the home decor and DIY niche, is checking out all of the drop-dead gorgeous mantels you ladies and gents can style. I could peruse Pinterest for hours looking up ideas. 

Unfortunately, I don't have a mantel of my own to decorate. Fooooortunately, I have a pretty sweet buffet that I made over that works just as well. All you need is a flat surface, right?

Minus the cozy fire underneath, that is.

Here is our "mantel" all dolled up for the November festivities. Not a lot has changed since my last update on Fall decor in our home, but I did manage to switch some things up and move things around. It's a nice, easy way to stretch what you have, especially when you'll have it out over a longer period like the Fall season. 

My apologies for the craptastic lighting.
You'll see that I'm still rocking my Colorful No-Sew Fall Bunting, but I'm looking forward to breaking out some burlap this weekend for a few banners that will bring in a more natural, rustic feel and coordinate with some table setting ideas I'm throwing around for Thanksgiving.

The "Be Thankful" printable is from The Fabulous Life of a Trophy Wife and the "Carry a Thankful Heart" printable is from Honey Bear Lane. I layered them with a pretty fun metallic leaf collage I made. I'm looking forward to sharing how I made this with you, and you'll never believe it cost me only $3.00 since I had a lot of the materials already.

I love the way the leaves reflect the candle light. Fall is totally a time for scented candles, and I have a pretty decent supply of those around.

Love this little turkey dude that I won as a prize at my best friend's baby shower (what can I say, I'm really good at baby bottle bowling). She's having her baby on the 19th, and not only is this little girl going to be my goddaughter, but she's also going to be named after me! I'm so honored, and this cute little turkey is a happy reminder of the sweet little girl that's on her way.

In the dining room, here are a few more metallic leaves on a burlap runner (seriously, I have an overabundance of leaves and burlap around here, which I suppose is really not a problem at all). I filled the square vase with some dollar store pumpkins and gourds. For a room that I haven't done much with, it helps to add a little something to bring the season in.

And there you have it, friends. With a few simple swaps and switches, I was able to refresh our decor for the second half of Fall. Before you know it, it'll be Black Friday--which is my official date to start decking our halls for Christmas.

Anyone else have a mantel they wish was really a mantel?

Who has started putting up your Christmas decorations? I know there are a few of you out there. Don't be ashamed and embrace it in the comments.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Cook a Chicken in the Crock Pot...Easy!

I will honestly and truthfully admit to you that I am no whiz in the kitchen. Food blogger I am not and will never claim to be. But in the name of making life insanely easy for my friends, I am always ready and willing to share something I've done in my kitchen that makes me go, "Why have I not been doing this for YEARS?"

And one of those things, friends, is cooking a whole chicken in your crock pot.

Seriously, so easy. Such a time saver. And such a bang for your buck! It's like win-win-win.

If you happen to pick up a whole chicken on sale at the grocery store, I think there might be no better value out there for your money. For $5 I can get enough meat for three meals, plus countless cups of stock for cooking. Around this time of the year, especially, quick and easy meals are a plus for me, and one day's worth of "work" (and I use that term loosely) cuts out plenty of weeknight work preparing dinner.

And now, friends, I'll share how easy it is--both to cook the chicken and make plenty of stock for any of your culinary whiz needs.

If you're cooking the chicken and making the stock, you'll need your crock pot for about 18 hours, give or take an hour or two depending on how your crock pot cooks.

First you'll want to rinse off your chicken and take out the little baggie of chicken insides. Toss it or save it for other cooking purposes. If you're my mother, throwing out the neck and all those other little birdie parts are equally as important as the bird itself and throwing it out is a sin. But if you're me, you wouldn't know what to do with them so they get thrown out. To each their own.

I'll also add an aside in here that my husband is completely freaked out by the idea of a whole chicken. As I was rinsing it in its little chicken bath in my sink, he couldn't help but say, "Look, it's swimming away!" and was completely grossed out. Also, resist the urge to chase him around with the chicken, because you'll literally have to disinfect every square inch of your kitchen when you're done, but I got a kick out of his squeamishness around the chicken nonetheless.

Lesson learned: keep most of your chicken prep to one area of your kitchen to keep the clean up/disinfecting to a minimum.

Once your chicken is nice and rinsed, you'll want to pat it dry with some paper towels. Take your seasonings and create a rub.

You can use whatever strikes your fancy or your needs, but I use salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion power, thyme, and rosemary, parsley and a little bit of olive oil to help it bind together.

Rub your seasonings all over your chicken. If you're leaving the skin on, make sure to rub it under the skin as well as over top. Personally, I leave the skin on because the meat tends to be a little more moist when I do, but leaving the skin on means adding a little more fat. Again, to each their own. You'll also rub some seasoning into the cavity of your chicken.

Add four or five balls of foil to the bottom of your crock pot. This keeps your chicken from sitting in its own fat as it cooks. You won't need to add water; the drippings from the cooking chicken will be enough.

Rest your chicken on top of the foil balls breast side down, cover, and cook on low for 8 hours.

And when it's done:

As you can see, I proooobably could have taken this out a little sooner since my poor little chicken split along the top and was more than falling apart before I took it out of the crock pot. Just make sure your chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees to be safe.

Another aside: what is it about cooking with a crock pot that automatically means whatever you make comes out looking not-so-pretty? I don't think I've ever made something with my crock pot that looked super visually appealing when it was done. Further proof that I will never be a food blogger: no pretty "after" photos.

Once the chicken is cooled, shred it and portion out based on your needs. I usually get enough meat for three meals. The best part is that it freezes beautifully and all you have to do is remember to take it out of the freezer to thaw for dinner. Best. Ever.

This time, when I made my chicken, I knew I needed it to also pull double duty. We are hosting Thanksgiving for the first time this year, and the planner in me had made my menu and shopping list during the last week of October. I knew I'd need at least 12 cups of chicken stock for the recipes and the crowd I was planning, so I used this opportunity to make some of my own with what I already had and avoid the need for the canned stuff when the time came.

To do this, you can actually start prepping while your chicken cooks. You'll need to chop up on onion, carrot, and celery and add some thyme, salt, pepper, and garlic. I add it all to a bag and store it in the fridge until I need it.

I didn't have celery this time around, but if you're missing an ingredient, it really won't hurt. The veggies help give an extra boost of vitamins and flavor to your stock.

Once you've shredded and picked over your chicken, throw the bones back into the crock pot and add your veggies and seasoning. Add water to your crock pot, cover, and set to cook on low for 10 hours. This is great to do right before you go to bed and when you wake up it'll be finished. It'll be like you slaved for hours, but actually got your beauty sleep instead.

Once it's cool, strain the liquid from the bones and veggies and portion the stock into freezer bags. Throw them into the freezer until you need them. I usually freeze them in one cup portions, but you can freeze them in whatever portion works best for you. To be safe, I would throw out any unused frozen stock after three months.

I got 15 cups of stock from my last crock pot chicken adventure. More than enough for Turkey Day, plus some to have on hand for meal planning, wahoo!

I really don't think there's anything easier. You could cook your chicken while you're at the office on a Friday, make your stock overnight, and then take a few minutes on Saturday morning to portion out your stock. Three nights of dinner and cups of a pantry staple at the ready after a few minutes of prep work and some time in your crock pot.

And for $5, you really can't beat that.

Do you have any money saving tips for the kitchen? Feel free to share in the comments!