DIY Golf Chipping Game

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One hobby my mom passed down to me that I’ll never get over – yard sales. We LOVE them; every weekend, Memorial Day-Labor Day, we scour through the paper and design our route from house to house to browse through other people’s trash.

Late in last year’s yard sale season, Mike (who, despite himself, is starting to get into it) found a beat up old bean bag game and the light bulbs went off. He had been wanting to get his younger brother, who is obsessed with golf, an at-home chipping game to practice with. Now, we could turn this old game into an awesome Christmas gift!
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Cost savings:
Brand new Chippo: $189
DIY “Upcycled” Golf Chipping Game: $35

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Traveling Arizona: Phoenix, Prescott, & Sedona By Land and By Air

Recently, Mike’s job took him to Arizona for a meeting of the minds and, since I was on Spring Break during that week, I tagged along to get some sun while Rhode Island got hit by its FOURTH Nor’Easter in a row. If you’ve never been to Arizona, I highly recommend this state for domestic travel. This was my 4th or 5th time there, and it’s still one of my favorite states to visit. The weather is always beautiful, the people are so nice, and the landscapes CANNOT be beat.

This trip, I had this pleasure of going to three cities, with some surprises in each! Mike’s meeting was in Prescott, but due to weather, he flew out early and stayed in Phoenix, where the weather was the complete opposite (80’s and sunny). Prescott is 2 hours north, and the weather was still in the 30’s, so I decided to stay in Phoenix an extra day before meeting Mike at night after his meetings the next day. Our original plan was to head to the Grand Canyon, but we decided to head back to Phoenix after the conference, since northern Arizona had forecasted snow, the sole reason I had left Rhode Island in the first place!  Here’s a look at some of the great experiences we had in the West.

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Crowdpleaser – Easy Summer Sangria

Guys – it’s coming. Summer is almost here in the Northeast! (Friends in the South, just keep your mouths shut and your Instagrams beach-free for a couple more weeks, ok?) Outdoor get-together season is just around the corner, and for me, nothing is better than a sweet glass of sangria on a warm afternoon.

It’s funny – as a 29 year old who spends most of her day surrounded by classmates in their early 20’s, I hear a lot about weekday afternoon drinking and Senior Spring stories that refer to 2017. Even though my Senior spring was in 2011, I still have such fond memories of all 4 years at Brown spending every afternoon on the Main Green and Lincoln Field with my friends.

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One of my favorite places on Earth, Lincoln Field at Brown University

Some of my favorite afternoons were spent grilling out with our larger group of friends, playing Beerbee and Cornhole, drinking Sangria out of a huge bucket on the lawn. Every time I drink Sangria I think of these carefree times and smile.

This Sangria recipe stayed with me through college and even into my early years in New York City to rooftop parties and to Sheep’s Meadow in Central Park. Now, I’m passing it on to you! It’s been honed and perfected throughout the years, and requires only as much effort as you want to put into cutting up fruit. I recommend oranges, apples, pears, and watermelon – and you can grill some of those pears too for a healthy snack!

Summer Sangria

Photo Credit Lincoln Field Photo Christopher Sewell, whose beautiful photo I found through a Google search.
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Frozen Peanut Butter Coconut Oil Treats Your Pup will Love

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Reese Witherspoon the Dog Princess-ing Out on the Beach

Who else in the Northeast is sick of this winter weather? It’s tough having a pup this time of year, especially one with so much energy.

In our house, we all find it hard to battle the dry skin that comes along with this bitter cold – even Reese! Once the weather started to deteriorate, Reese’s coat got less and less smooth and shiny.  I did some research and found that coconut oil was a healthy treat for pups with benefits that reached far beyond their skin. Then I found these delicious pupper treats that our girl loves. We feed her one every day from a standard ice cube tray — or a fun shape, larger sized treat if she’s been really good!

Frozen Peanut Butter Coconut Oil Treats
1 cup coconut oil
3/4 cup peanut butter (no xylithol!!)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Melt coconut oil and peanut butter over low heat – don’t let the mix boil. Stir well!

Mix in the cinnamon, and continue to stir.

While you pour the mixture into ice cube trays, make sure to keep the liquids well-mixed. Sometimes the peanut butter sinks to the bottom, causing some of the treats to be essentially all peanut butter and others to be mostly coconut oil.

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Freeze and feed to your favorite pup! Don’t forget to check around for the right amount of coconut oil to feed your dog based on size, and to ease them into a diet that includes coconut oil.

*I found this treat recipe on the Golden Barrel website, but I tweaked it a bit myself because I liked the consistency of the treat a bit better, and because our pup gets a lot of peanut butter other places.

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Status: Off Hiatus

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Over the past few months, I’ve discovered something not-so-revolutionary… getting your doctorate is hard!! All the time I had over the summer to craft and blog and run – sucked away and replaced by flash cards and long afternoons at school practicing my newly-acquired physical therapy skills.

That said, I can finally say that I have gotten into the “groove” of grad school. While fall semester felt really long, really overwhelming, and really hard, spring semester has been a welcome turnaround and has left me with some – gasp! – actual free time. I hope to spend some of this hard-earned free time to get back into updating this blog to share my DIY and experiences as I go.

I plan to continue writing about my favorite recipes and my crafts/DIY projects around the house. But, alongside that, I’ll also be writing about my experience planning a wedding because –  I’m engaged! On October 22, 2017, Mike, (my fiance!), took me on what I thought would be a typical boat ride after an 8-hour day painting our deck. (You may recognize that project from My Summer Checklist.) Needless to say, that project did NOT get finished, because that sunset boat ride was actually a grand plan for a proposal! It was a really perfect and sentimental moment.

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Posts Coming Up:
– Deck Project – The Second Summer
– DIY Platform Bed with Storage << that’s right we’re BUILDING A BED!
– Pup Treats for a Birthday Pawty
– Arizona Vacation: Prescott, Sedona, and Phoenix
– Clean, High Protein Breakfasts
– Wedding Planning: So Far

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