Thursday, June 7, 2012

In My Kitchen. Fun App, and a Reno Update.

Summer is finally here at Casa Budget Design Girl!

My son had his last day of pre-school yesterday, and we are free as can be until fall!

Today I am going to share a recipe with you that I made last weekend when we had friends for dinner. 

I am also going to be sharing our progress so far with our kitchen reno. 

First up, my Caprese Kabobs. (That's what I'm calling them...Is that Italian-Greek?)

This could not have been any easier!!
Here's what I used to make these...
Trader Joe's has fresh mozzarella balls in olive oil. I have seen these at the regular grocery store, but I like to use Trader Joe's dairy, since it is hormone free.
I just used a cherry tomato, a small basil leaf, a mozzarella ball, and another basil leaf on a tooth pick.
Yummy organic cherry tomatoes.

Some fresh basil. I have a container inside, and outside. I tried to use the small leaves for these, but you could cut or tear the larger leaves into smaller pieces.

I arranged these mini kabobs on a platter.
Then I drizzled them with Trader Joe's Balsamic Vinegar.
 I keep my Trader Joe's Balsamic Vinegar in this cute ironstone like bottle on my counter.

Fresh, delicious, and pretty healthy, as far as appetizers go!
I will be making them again to take to a graduation party this weekend.

Now, on to the state of my kitchen...
You may or may not know that we had a pretty major leak here recently. You can read about that here, and the new design inspiration here.

Well, we had the leak repaired, and the whole area was cleaned and dried for DAYS!!! I was NOT a FAN of the jet engine fans!!! Haha. ;-)

Anyhow, we have drywall again, and though all the food from my pantry is in large bins in my dining room, we are able to at least use the kitchen.

We are getting a new floor, since it was damaged, and could not be patched. :-)
I have very nice 24 inch travertine in here now, and throughout the downstairs. It looks nice, but it is a BEAST to keep clean, people! I have been dealing with it for 11 years, and it's time for a change.

I'm going with hardwoods, I think!

Here's the kitchen now...
 The whole pantry wall has been replaced, and we will re-build the pantry.

We have a lot of work to do. The floor demolition will start the first part of July, then the hardwoods will be installed with new baseboards. We are also planning to get new stainless steel appliances, and have the cabinets painted a creamy white. (I painted them once myself with help from my wonderful mom, and I am not doing that again! It was a TON of work!!)

I am removing the backsplash also, I think. I would love to change the granite too, but I'm thinking we may have to wait on that. We'll see.

The walls will go lighter, and we will order a new sink and faucet.
I also plan to paint the kitchen island a charcoal gray.

I am also hoping to build an "L" shaped upholstered banquet window seat, and find a longer, skinnier farm table.

That's the update for now. We are making progress, but it's going to take a little time, and I don't want to rush through and regret any of my choices later.

Stay tuned. I will be sharing my progress, and selections.

Have a great day!
P.S. I could really use some "Likes" on my Facebook Budget Design Girl page. I'm starting to get a complex! Click here to get to my page...Thanks! :-)

Linking to the following...
Saturday Nite Special link party via Funky Junk Interiors

NewNostalgia My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia


  1. I too make Caprese kabos...super easy!! I especially love making them at the end of the summer when I can use fresh basil and tomatoes out of our garden. I know you are excited to see progress on the reno! I'd like you on FB, but I don't have an account :(

    1. They are fun!! :-) You like fresh and easy like I do!
      I planted one piddly little tomato plant in an experimental location. We will see if I get any good tomatoes from it. I have tried in years past to grow them, but we don't get rain here for like 300 ridiculous days in a row, and by the time the tomatoes started to ripen, it was so hot that I had to cover them with umbrellas part of the day, and water them 3 times a day.

      I planted one in a side yard location that gets only late afternoon sun. We will see....


  2. Love the kabobs. I need to make some. Can't wait to see the finished reno. Thanks tons for joining TTT. Hugs, Marty

    1. They are really refreshing for summer!
      The reno will take a while, but i'm sure it will be worth it!

      Thanks for stopping by, Marty! :-)

  3. Your kitchen looks amazing! Congrats on that!! And these caprese kabobs have my mouth WATERING! YUMMMMMYYY! Thank you for sharing.


    1. Thanks so much! You are too sweet! We have a long way to go with the reno, but I'm so happy we are able to do it!

      Thanks for the visit!

  4. We are huge fans of the caprese bites. In fact, we just served these at my daughters wedding. Since we needed a ton, we used grape tomatoes and mozzerela pearls, which are super small balls of fresh mozz cheese. It was a perfect appetizer for our guests. I love that my kids like them, too. Good luck with the repairs to your kitchen. Been there with leak damage. Looks good so far.

    1. Yum! Your version sounds great too!

      I know, water leaks are a pain, but I'm hanging in there better than predicted! ;-)


  5. I am looking forward to your kitchen reno!....Now, I have not seen the mozzarella balls at Trader Joes...definitely going to get them for my dinner party and making your caprese kabobs!!...thanks for the great idea for an down 2 to go!!


I love reading all of your thoughtful comments!