habitatathome, howto, crafts, diy, kids

Sauerkraut and Havarti Grilled Cheese Sandwich


The sauerkraut in this grilled cheese sandwich gives it a nice, tangy kick.  Havarti cheese and pumpernickel bread really hold up to the sauerkraut, making this sandwich no wallflower.  It will leave you happy and satisfied, wondering why you ever tolerated such bland grilled cheeses before.  It is one for the recipe books!  So simple, yet, so very, very tasty.

Sauerkraut Stuffed Mushrooms

 Stuffed mushrooms 
This is week, I am taking on a 3-day sauerkraut challenge.  I am making 3 vegetarian dishes using this wonderful fermented condiment, usually associated with meats.  This is day two, and is surely my favorite so far!  Though, both were so scrumptious, it's hard to say. The first, was the 'Sauerkraut and Thyme Potato Gratin', which was the perfect gratin in both taste and texture.  The sauerkraut really gave the gratin a great kick of flavor and made it feel lighter than most.  These stuffed mushrooms are even easier to make, and just heavenly.   

Sauerkraut and Thyme Potato Gratin

 sauerkraut adn thyme potato gratin

Finding a way to utilize sauerkraut in vegetarian cooking is a challenge.  Still, I set myself to the task, and came up with 3 recipes which are absolutely fantastic.  

We all know, sauerkraut normally pairs so well with things like pastrami and German sausages.  Did you also know, that it is extremely good for you?  It is rich in vitamin C, B and K, calcium and magnesium.  Being a fermented food, it also works to optimize your immune system and remove bodily toxins.  So, even if it's covered in cheese, at least we can feel good about that! 

Upon much brainstorming, and a few tests in the kitchen, I now present you with my first of 3 amazing, vegetarian, sauerkraut recipes.

Easy Floral Headband

 DIY floral headband

My daughter and I had such a nice experience making this easy, DIY floral headband together.  We sat outside, chatting the day away, while we focused on this cute little craft.  It took no time at all and was totally stress-free.  Of course, she LOVES it, and made her sister one too!  It would also make a great gift or children's party activity.

Playing with Paper Mache

paper mach hot air balloon

A few months ago, a friend and I met up for a day of shopping.  Much to my surprise, she came bearing gifts!  For no reason at all, I might add.  The best surprise ever!  It was a wonderful craft book.  It has kept me inspired with so many great things to create with my daughters. From it, we made pom poms, did a few science experiments, built a cardboard dollhouse, and now we've been inspired to do some paper mache.  As my friend knows, crafts are my crack.  I use these great books as an inspirational platform, for more creativity of my own.  Here, are some of the ones I'm loving right now! 

Ever since she gave me the book, I've been meaning to thank my friend with a craft.  I have finally settled on this one.   We both have small children, and her daughter Veronica's 3rd birthday is coming up.  I thought this would be a cute token, from our kids to hers.  I even personalized it with the little plane banner advertisement: "Neek is 3!".  (Neek, being short for Veronica). 

Summer Journaling

A beautiful summer journal.  
What a wonderful project to engage in over the course of the season.  It is so simple, calming and in tune with nature.  Collecting from nature is a great learning tool for children, of course.  Though, couldn't we all benefit from a little meditative practice such as this?  To explore our world and document it, becomes beauty in itself. 

Here, Finnish artist and creator, Maija Ukko, from Ukkonooa, has made a journal for her daughter in such a do-able, yet beautiful way.  I am so glad to be able to share her inspiration.  I love how she bound the book, using a simple stitch through paper.  And the subtle use of paint over printed paper, creates such a great back drop for the nature collection.  It's just so pretty!  Thank you Maija, for sharing this beautiful 'Book of Summer'!  

Image Transfer onto Wood Crates

 Image transfer on wood crate

I am so happy to have found another wonderful artist and DIY-er who believes we all have the ability to be creative and imaginative in our own homes. Ananda's 'Habitat at Home' is sunny California.  Lucky her!  She is a landscape architectural designer, inspired by the nature she sees around her.  You can see her DIY projects and landscaping inspiration on her blog, A Piece of Rainbow.  

Here, Ananda has used a great image transfer technique, using wax paper and an ink jet printer.  I love how authentic it looks!   I chose this particular project, to show a new way of combing art with DIY.  It's so pretty.  See her easy-to-follow instructions on DIY: Pallet Wood Crates & Easy Image Transfer.

Art I love

My taste in art changes over time.  These days, I can't get enough of illustrative and watercolor works.  I like simple and whimsical.  One of my favorite bloggers, 'The Jealous Curator', always finds fascinating works of art to admire and ponder over.  Through her, I found this amazing artist and designer Danielle Kroll.   Below, are her sketchbook works and vacation photos transformed with a touch of art.  Both so great!