Sunday, February 27, 2011

Do you know about this?

This is so cool.

For $10 a month, you get a box of makeup and beauty supplies.

What's not to love?

Makeup Design: 3D Appliance Makeup

Maybe that.

UPDATE: A quick on the draw reader tried to subscribe and was told that they are sold out.  Birchbox answered FruHo's query about their sold-out status with this, "Yup, we're temporarily sold out of subscriptions. But not to worry — if you readers join the waitlist now, they'll be first in line when we have additional supply. We don't ask for any commitment and we'll email them as soon as they can join."  TFH apologizes for teasing you with a product you can't even buy at the moment!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Breakfast Tomorrow: Chocolate Chip Bacon Pancakes

The Frugal Hostess may not have ever mentioned this, but she has a personal chef* that prepares all of her meals.  Recently, when Coach Brother-in-Law was visiting, FruHo commanded the chef to prepare a magnificent breakfast feast.  Here is what FruHubs made.
Chocolate Chip Bacon Pancakes

Yep, you heard correctly.  Rad.

Chocolate chips
Bacon (cooked)

1.  Make pancake batter.
2.  Add chocolate chips.
3.  Add cooked, crumbled bacon.
4.  Cook pancakes in a cast iron skillet.
5.  Drizzle a tiny amount of syrup on them and eat.
6.  Remove defibrillators from closet and apply to chest to restart heart.

You'll notice in these pictures that CheFruHubs is using a weird looking bowl.  It's called the MixerMate, and it is shaped that way to keep the batter from flying all around when you use a hand mixer.  Really, The Frugal Hostess could care less about this bowl, based on having a personal chef and all, but the chef thought it was a pretty cool tool.  Thanks, Beater Blade, for sending FruHo that free bowl to force upon her chef slash husband try out!

*Total lie.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Frugal Sandwich?

The Frugal Hostess spent a recent Saturday checking in on two of her favorite food pioneers in the city.

The Infidel
First up was a visit to the Irwin Street Market.  Home of Jake's Ice Cream, Candi's for Breakfast, and King of Pops, Irwin Street is an incubator for food entrepreneurs.  The latest and greatest to launch there is Picnic!, "comfort food, Southern style."  TFH and FruHubs accidentally ordered the same sandwich, the Infidel, which is the Picnic! version of a Cubano.  Good stuff, but they were pissed to miss the Fried Green Tomato BLT, which should actually be called the Southern South Sandwich of the South (pimento cheese, fried green tomatoes, bacon, and pear pepper relish).

There are all kinds of desserts at Irwin Street Market, but FruHo had other plans for post-luncheon sweets.  She dragged FruHubs on a wild goose chase of carsickness and potholes to arrive at their next destination, because she was "sure" she knew how to get there.  Not so.  No matter, because now that's she's been, she'll never forget again.  The owner is a genius and, in the never-ending saga of all roads leading to North Florida, the true love of an old friend of The Frugal Hostess, which only clicked after meeting her three times.  Duh.

Now that you've watched the video, you will no doubt want to go there.  Here's how.  You're welcome.

So, word on the street is that TFH's friend Jake at Picnic! is going to name a sandwich after her.  What should be on it?  Leave your idea in the comments.

Monday, February 21, 2011

New Slow Carb Recipe - Faux Tuna Nicoise

This was really good, and a nice change from eating chicken and beans in a bowl.

Salad Dressing Ingredients:
3/4 cup canola or olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
One clove roasted garlic
Teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt & pepper

1.  Put all of the above in a glass jar and shake until emulsified.
2.  The Frugal Hostess never measures this; just do it by eye, and taste it as you go.
3.  In other words, make vinaigrette.

Salad Ingredients:
Iceberg (or whatever lettuce you have.  It's prettier with the color contrast.) 
Can of cannelini beans
Tuna, one can per person
Red onion
Boiled eggs, one per person, quartered
Artichoke hearts, quartered (from the jar is fine)
Kalamata olives, halved, four per person
Anchovies to taste

1.  Wash and cut the spinach and lettuce.  Chiffonade would be ideal.
2.  Mix greens and cannelini beans, then toss with vinaigrette.
3.  Toss tuna in a bowl with salt and pepper, a few drops of the vinaigrette, and an optional few dashes of Tabasco.
4.  After putting a bed of lettuce on the plate, make a small mound of tuna in the center.  Top with diced red onion and capers.
5.  Arrange remaining ingredients symmetrically around the plate, and then mess it all up by eating it!

This is certainly no culinary mountain top, but it's good.  Enjoy!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Five Essential Things

The Frugal Hostess is a blogger, so she reads a lot of blogs.  That makes it easier to rip off other people's ideas.  In today's episode, TFH is copying sosser from bricolagelife and detailing her five essentials for every day.  Here FruHo's Five Daily Essentials:


1.  Blackberry.  Listen, don't come calling with your iPhone siren song.  TFH needs a phone that can actually make and receive phone calls, and an iPhone that isn't.  And the Android that she mistakenly purchased over the summer could not send or receive email.  So there goes that, "smart" phone.  Blackberry it is.  FruHo may or may not have to take the battery out twice a day to reset the acid trip flashback the screen is experiencing, but she will always love it.

2.  Whey protein shake and/or boiled eggs.  These are the only things The Frugal Hostess can really swallow within 30 minutes of waking up without throwing up.  (See: Diet, Effed Up; by Tim Ferriss)

3.  Swim cap and goggles.  This is so she can looks as ridiculous as possible at the pool every morning and/or night.  It also helps when she gets a cramp in her right foot and starts swimming like a one-legged man.

4.  Earplugs.  To sleep.  And be awake.  Silence FTW.

5.  The F Word.  This should be obvious.  If not, you have accidentally reached the wrong blog. Please check the number and dial again.

OK, good.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Whoooo Loves You?

Another craft project failure.
[Editor's note: This blog post has been posted, unposted, and lost on the ether for a while.  It was supposed to go up on Valentine's Day, but since it didn't, enjoy it today.]

Once again, The Frugal Hostess has been unable to execute the brilliant craft project idea in her head.

To wit:

This is supposed to be a cute, cartoonish owl face.  When you open him up, his eyeballs form the Os in "Whoo," as in, "Whoo loves you?"  You know, like what an owl would say.

Tap, tap.

You there?

It did not work, so TFH won't bother you with publishing the instructions.  But those of you who (ooo) thought you were getting a Valentine?  Well, forget it.


But, actually, the first few versions were even worse.

That owl looks skurred.
And this one looks like a turkey.  Or a junkie.

Look into my turkey slash junkie slash owl eyeballs.
Happy Valentine's Day!  FruHo has no idea whooo loves you, but she's pretty sure it's not these creepy, ridiculous owls.  Best wishes anyway.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Ultimate FruHo Guide to House Guests

The Frugal Hostess feels sure she has written about having house guests before, but no posts are popping out to make themselves known.  If this is a repeat, she'd guess you could probably use a refresher, anyway.  

House guests are a delightful treat, as long as you know they are coming.  Occasionally, surprise guests are also fun (but, confidential to FruHubs: not if they are relatives and not if it is your anniversary).   If you make up your mind to enjoy the experience, then you will.  Here's why:

1.  Having someone stay with you gives you the chance to see your house through fresh eyes.  When you are frantically shoving old greige bras in a drawer and sweeping cat litter off pillow cases, you see nothing but dirt and shabbiness everywhere.  This is a much-needed wake up call because, frankly, your house is a mess.  Those dog hair tumbleweeds and Ross Dress-for-Less price tags that you pretend you can't see behind the door?  Your guest can see them.  The huge splash stain on the painting in the hall where you dropped a cup of coffee and never wiped it off?  Yeah, Slobbalina, your company has not developed the same selective sight lines you have and will totally zero in on that immediately.  Get busy and hide your disgusting habits from outsiders!!!

2.  Company is the perfect excuse to buy things.  Once you've given your pad the once-over and realized it does not measure up, it's a good time to hit the stores for some lipstick to put on that pig.  New throw pillows will cover the blood stain on your couch, and heavily-scented soaps will mask the dog kennel/baby diaper smell that permeates your place.  Be sure to stock up on Febreeze, candles, and all the latest issues of your favorite frivolous magazines (you know, for the guests to read).

3.   A house guest creates an instant party.  Whether you live alone or with a family of monkeys, adding another person to the mix is the perfect excuse for a fiesta.  You really owe it to your guest to let him try your new recipe for the perfect Manhattan, and you couldn't possibly live with yourself if you didn't have artisan chocolates on hand to share.  Stay up late, turn the music on loud, and throw caution (or your morning meeting) to the wind; you've got company, baby.

Your guest may be a college chum who hasn't showered since she left the Panic tour or your very proper in-laws.  Whoever it is, there are certain base line amenities that you must provide if you don't want to get trash-talked to all of your mutual acquaintances.  Here's a short list:

1.  A place to sleep.  Whether you offer a guestroom, futon, air mattress, or couch, please do act as though you expected someone.  Have a pillow and blanket available, and, if they can't be set up in advance, help your guest make her bed.  There is nothing more pitiful feeling than making up your own couch in an unfamiliar setting.

2.  T. O. W. E. L. S. Well, maybe one thing is worse, and that is having no towels to use.  Seriously, if you can't prepare a clean towel in advance, please return to adult school and repeat.  You should also stick your head into the bathroom your guest will use and check for soap, toothpaste, and shampoo.  Even if no one in your family uses anything but shower gel and a prayer to get clean, just get some freaking soap for a guest.

3.  A plan.  There should be some semblance of a plan of what's going to happen while your guest is in town.  The plan can be, "Let's sit around and prank call our elementary school teachers."  It can be anything, and it can be totally flexible, but it should exist.  Have some ideas, like, "I thought we could visit the iguana farm up the road and then grab ice cream, but if you have something else in mind, that's cool, too."  Also?  Communicate said plans.  It sucks to be a stranger in a strange land and not know what's going on until it sneaks up on you, as in "Milicent, we're leaving for the ballet in 20 minutes."  FruHo has been known to cry out of shear fury under similar circumstances.

If you are interested in earning hostess bonus points (and, really, isn't that what it's all about?), here are some things you should do:

- Have some cold breakfast items (danish, cereal, fruit) set out on the kitchen table, and prepare the coffee pot so all anyone has to do is turn it on.  Put the appropriate dishes out there, too.
- Put your easiest-to-use TV remote in the guest room.
- Set a small vase of fresh flowers in the guest room or bathroom.
- Get your guest's Thing.  Like, if he is a tea lover, get tea and all the accoutrement.  If she loves pulpy orange juice, throw her out get her some.
- Arrange an event.  Whether it's a dinner party or just drinks and darts at the bar, make an effort to honor your guest and introduce him to your friends.  
- If you have one, put a picture of you and your guest in the guest room.  Or, if you have a photo of her child, put that out.  This will make guests feel loved and let them know that you were excited for their visit.
- Bottom line: Do whatever you can to make your visitor feel special.  The older you get, the more lifelong memories are made during these sporadic weekends sprinkled in between the drudgery of your real life.  So don't blow it!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Goal! Er, Homerun! Um, Touchdown?

Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a winner.  Actually, we have five winners, each of whom will receive a glorious bag of Hershey's Assorted Miniatures.  Congratulations to Trash, Mary, Dilem*mama, Meghan, and katklaw777!

Winners, please email frugalhostess @ to claim your prize.  And, if you didn't win this, consider entering Hershey's contest for a trip to the Football Hall of Fame hosted by Emmitt Smith.

The Frugal Hostess will be celebrating either way, because.....


Saturday, February 5, 2011

It's Stupid We Have to Say "Big Game"

Have you noticed that all of the special events surrounding the Super Bowl have to refer to themselves as "Big Game" parties?  How ridiculous.  Hey, Super Bowl, just FYI, if people want to celebrate you, let them.  It doesn't hurt your brand, moron.


Listen, The Frugal Hostess hates football.  She will every once in a while pretend to be happy when FruHubs's favorite team scores, only because she is selfless.  But she totally and completely hates every sport ever.  Maybe except hockey, since that moves pretty quickly.  Whatever.  The Super Bowl is something that's always going to be celebrated up in here, so FruHo might as well get on board and enjoy herself.

This year, just a couple of close friends are coming over, so the focus is on maximum caloric intake in the minimum amount of time.  The menu is something like: fried, fried, salty, fried, meat, meat, meat, fried, and cheese.  Because the people at Hershey's are under the misconception that this blog is read by more than three people, they also sent TFH a bag of miniatures to enjoy during the Big Game.  

Have you ever tried to think of a football-themed dessert made out of Hershey's Miniatures?  Rest assured, that kind of thinking doesn't come easy.  Or at all.  So The Frugal Hostess is making s'mores.

Super S'mores.

Before baking.


One (or more) bag of Hershey's Miniatures
One bag of delicious marshmallows*
One batch of this recipe by Donna Currie for Peanut Butter Graham Crackers

You are not the Super Bowl.  You are not a moron, and you definitely know how to make s'mores.  FruHo is doing hers on a cookie sheet and baking them to melt everything together.
And, yes, that's Peanut Butter Graham Crackers.  Hell to the yes.

After baking, with an extra Krackle on top.
But wait, there's more.  You can head over to the Hershey's website to enter their sweepstakes to win a trip to the Football Hall of Fame with your host, Emmitt Smith.  Who's Emmitt Smith?  No idea, but he's taking you on a trip so Google him.

The lovely, albeit deluded, folks at Hershey's have also agreed to give five readers bags of Hershey's Miniatures, so you can make your very own s'mores for the next soiree you serve up.  Leave a comment about who you want to win the Super Bowl, or the next season of Top Chef, or what your best guess is on this Emmitt Smith cat, and five people will be picked at random to get a sack of candy.  Them's good odds, y'all. 

Rules & Regulations:

Who: Any reader who leaves a comment.

What: One of five bags of delicious Hershey's Miniatures! 

When: Post your comment between now and 5:00pm on Wednesday, February 9 to be entered. The Frugal Hostess will post the winner's name on this here blog on or around Feb. 10.

Where: Down there.  In the comments.  Hello!

Why: Because FruHo is dieting and cannot have all these candy bars taunting her.

Fine print: Winners will be chosen at random using and must email TFH to accept their prizes and provide mailing information.  Fulfillment will be handled by Hershey's, so don't you yell at The Frugal Hostess if you're having a chocolate fit and haven't received your bag yet.  Amen

*Marshmallows = best food ever.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Sucky Craft Projects that Suck

Have you ever created something and been so proud of the results that you couldn't wait to share them?  The Frugal Hostess started a Valentine's Day project a few weeks ago, and it's only because her camera was on vacation in Florida that she hasn't posted about it yet.  The project is finished, or kinda finished, and the camera is back, so TFH felt today would be the perfect day to share her masterpiece with the world.

Except, when she took the results out of where they had been hiding, she realized something terrible.  This project sucks.  It is stupid and somewhat hideous.  How did it go from being awesome a couple of weeks ago to sucktastic today?  Take a look.

See, sucky, right?  These were inspired by a picture on a blog that shall remain nameless because FruHo can't remember and has searched high and low for it.  On said blog, these looked great.  The edges were slightly frayed, the circles charmingly wonky.  They were attached to chopsticks or something and meant to be flowers.  Since The Frugal Hostess has two Olympic-size containers of fabric remnants, she thought this would be an easy way to use some of them.  No, she doesn't sew.  At all.  The only things these poor remnants get used for are making finger puppet theaters, so the quantity of remnants can most certainly be entered into evidence.

What was FruHo planning to use these for, you ask?  Well, she really didn't get that far.  Maybe to top a Valentine's Day gift?

Or perhaps as a jaunty corsage?

At least they were easy.  Just cut circles of various sizes out of various fabrics.  Then stack them on top of each other and sew together with a button in the (sort of) center.  TFH found that she liked the smaller ones best; the big guys are just too floppy to do anything with.

What would you do with these crappy items if you had accidentally made them while under a spell of thinking they were cute?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Congratulations to....

Drew!!!  You won!  Email frugalhostess @ to accept your prize.