Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Project House

I had a visitor over the other day and she commented on some slabs of wood that were leaning against my living room wall.  Slightly embarrassed, I explained that they were pieces to my son's crib, which my husband and I have yet to finish building {our son's 14 months! but the pack-in-play has been a perfect bed for him}.  She looked at me quite seriously and said, "Alisyn, I think it's amazing that you always have a project to work on.  This is a project house and there's no need to be ashamed of that!"

And you know what?  I completely agree with her.  I love that my house is a "Project House," and that my husband and I always have some crazy-brained scheme leaning against our living room wall or taking up the dining room space or strewn across our kitchen island.  We're both "do-ers," so it's nice that we always have something "to do."  :)

Here are some recent projects from The Project House:

Crib before being sanded and coated with polyurethane
Coated with polyurethane, ready for assembly!




Thursday, June 14, 2012


We keep things pretty simple around here when it comes to "family celebration holidays" such as Valentine's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, & Father's Day...and by simple I mean we usually make gifts rather than buy them.  And since my son is too little to create much, I decided the gifts needed to "include him" as much as possible.

So, here's what the Big Pops will be receiving this year...

A "CAR-MAT T-SHIRT" {original design and pattern found here}

I added a custom logo on the front of the shirt just for fun...

PHOTOS OF OUR LITTLE MAN FOR THE GARAGE {I glued magnets to the back of some old metric nuts}

& A DESPICABLE ME MINION T-SHIRT...because I'm just that cool.  :)
Of course I couldn't resist getting one for the little man so that he could match his dad!!!  {I found this shirt at Walmart.}

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

It's Not Too Late... show Mom how much you care!

We've added the following Cora Totes to our Etsy Shop...

...check them out and have a wonderful time celebrating that awesome Mom in your life!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


What did we do before Pinterest?  Seriously.  My niece just got engaged and I have been going nuts with Wedding Concept Pinboards.  LOVE IT!  I'll share a couple of the boards soon, but for now, let's drool over her dress!  

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Mother's Day is Coming!!!

We'll be adding some more Cora Tote options to our Etsy Shop over the next week, so be sure to check them out and order one for that special lady in your life!!!

Act now and save!  :)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Soul Food

I was part of a conversation a few weeks ago that I found to be rather humorous.  A young lady told her mom she was really needing some "soul food" for dinner that week.  Her mom smiled her agreement and I chimed in how some good ol' fashioned chicken and dumplings sounded divine.  The young lady gave me a blank stare.  So I proceeded to describe the hearty and flavorful soup that sits in a crock pot all day, the puffy and cheesy dumplings that cook on top, and the aroma that takes you back to your happy place.  The mom once again smiled her agreement.  The young lady started laughing.  She said, "That's not soul food!  Soul food is a huge pizza!"


That's when I gave the young lady a blank stare.  Pizza!?  PIZZA!  I love pizza, but pizza as soul food?  I think not!  Maybe that sweet young thang just needs to get out more.  Or maybe she needs to come to my house for dinner tonight, because tonight we are having REAL SOUL FOOD!

serves 4 {large helpings}

Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 4-6 hours on High + 25 minutes on High for Dumplings

Ingredients for Soup:
2 c chopped carrots
2 c chopped potatoes
1 1/2 c chopped parsnips {or celery if parsnips aren't your thing}
half medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried sage or savory
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
4 c chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken
2 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp cornstarch {adjust according to how thick you like your broth}

Ingredients for Dumplings:
1/2 c flour
1/3 c cornmeal
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese
1 egg, beaten
2 Tbsp milk
2 Tbsp butter
I usually double my dumplings...they're just that good.

Set a crock pot to high heat then prep vegetables - place potatoes at the bottom of the pot, then carrots, parsnips/celery, onion, garlic, bay leaves, sage/savory, salt, and pepper.  Place the chicken on top of the vegetables.  In a medium bowl gradually whisk the chicken broth into the condensed soup.  Pour broth mixture over chicken.  Cover and cook for 4-6 hours.

Stir the soup and remove bay leaves.  In a small bowl combine water and cornstarch; stir into soup until combined.

For dumplings, 25 minutes before serving, combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and cheese.  In a small bowl combine egg, milk, and melted butter; pour into flour mixture.  Stir with a fork until mixture is combined.  Drop spoonfuls of dough directly on top of the soup.

Cover and cook {do not open cover during cooking} for 23-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into dumpling comes out clean.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Starting Again

Spring is my absolute most favorite season {followed by Fall at a close second} because I love the idea of starting again.  I am at an age and stage in my life where the push to reestablish, recommit, renew, and revitalize is at the forefront of my thinking and springtime goals.  Perhaps my recent birthday brought on such thinking rather than the spring :) , but regardless, it's time to start again!

And instead of writing down a bunch of goals I know I won't reach right now {exercising every day, vacuuming and sweeping the floor every day - my son's a crawler!, keeping up with emails/blogging/facebook/pinterest, or reorganizing my storage room}, I plan to work on things like...

*Seeing something beautiful about each day
*Thanking God more fervently for the blessings I enjoy
*Smiling more
*Actually telling someone the compliment I'm thinking about them rather than keeping it to myself
*Laughing more freely
*Loving more openly
*Living more fully {why do we "stock up" and just wait for someday!?}

Sure, those are still lofty goals, but seriously, THEY ARE DOABLE!    

Artwork by Karen Ku entitled "Springtime Collage

Monday, April 2, 2012


In honor of the Easter holiday this weekend, SPICYDESIGNS is offering a 10% discount off your entire SPICY purchase!  Visit our Etsy Shop, fall in love with a wonderful tote, purse, or pillows, then enter the coupon code "hipptityhop" at checkout and save!


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Be sure to check out TODAY for a chance to win this classy and flirtatious Cora Tote.  And don't forget to check out our Etsy Shop to see what else we have in store!  

Good luck and Happy St. Patty's Day!  :)

Loves, Al

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


You want this tote, don't you?

Guess what!?  On Thursday, March 15 it could be YOURS!  :)  Here's how to add this fabu fashion statement to your repertoire...  

On Thursday, visit the awesome Simply Utah site and follow the simple instructions for entering the giveaway.  That's it.  

Us SPICY gals like to keep things simple.  :)  

Simply Utah was founded by two rockin' sisters - Lyndsay & Leslie - who love Utah and the creativity exuding from it. features a directory of local online businesses {check them out, they're amazing!}, weekly giveaways, and blog and event features.  It's a great resource for everyone involved and we want to thank the lovelies for hosting our giveaway!

Gook luck to those of you who enter on Thursday and for those of you who do not, click on over to our SPICY Etsy Shop and see what else we have in store!  :)

Loves, Al    

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


...the newest member of our SPICY product line:


The Cora measures 8" x 14" x 5" which is the perfect size for a standard set of scriptures or your daily purse items.  The Cora also boasts two interior pockets - one zippered and one open cloth pocket for easy access - and two medium synthetic leather straps for durable daily use.  

This very bag made from Amy Butler's Fresh Poppies in Ivory is up for grabs in a giveaway next week.  Yes, YOU could be the owner of this fun and flirty tote.  Stay tuned for details...  

Loves, Al

Thursday, March 1, 2012

We Not Only Sew, We Cook Too!!!


Did you know that the SPICY gals love to cook as much as they love to sew!? It's true. We do! {And we're not too shabby at it!}

This week I discovered a new recipe that has changed my life ... f-o-r-e-v-e-r. I'm saying, "Goodbye!" to fresh, store bought French bread and, "Hello!" to my very own loaves straight from the oven. So very easy and so beyond delicious. Like seriously, I have never had a better loaf of French bread in my entire life...even whilst in France.

It's that good.

I followed the recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up! with just a few tweaks of my own. I only ever cook with butter {no shortening to be found here, I'm afraid!}, I put half the sugar in with my yeast, and I ended up using somewhere around 7 cups of flour. Also, I believe THE PERFECT BREAD MUST BE KNEADED, so my step #8 involved kneading in the remaining flour and allowing the dough to rise in a lightly greased bowl.

Now that my tummy is blissfully full of this incredible stuff, I'm off to sew some zippers into our SPICY totes! :)

Loves, Al

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

New Year, New Look, Same Amount of Spicy

Steph and I are excited about some of the goals we have for Spicy Designs this year. But our underlying theme to all of them is S-I-M-P-L-I-F-Y. Hence the new simplistic look of our blog...we figure our products can do most of the talking for themselves! And as very busy mothers of young babies, it is important for us to keep our priorities straight. But what creative person can survive without an outlet!? None that I know of, so Spicy will remain to "be." We'd invite you to enjoy us on this grand adventure of 2012 and add a little SPICE to your life if you feel so inclined. :)

Feel free to check back here and our Etsy Shop often!

Loves, Al

PS Love the Pyper Scripture Tote pictured in this post? Details HERE!

Welcome, Baby Senya!

We would like to welcome the newest member of the Spicy Designs Team - though her sewing days are still a few years away - little baby Senya!

Steph is now a proud mama of two beautiful girls. And despite her extremely busy life, she has been developing some amazing design concepts that we are excited to try out.

No doubt you will be seeing Miss Senya modeling something Spicy in the future. :)

Loves, Al