Thursday, June 26, 2014

Homemade Peach Ice Cream

Ice cream? Yes, please.

My go-to flavors are chocolate chip cookie dough or mint chocolate chip, but I figured those would be a challenge for my first time attempting homemade ice cream. I was super excited when Julie from Fox KRBK asked if I would learn to make ice cream with her! Homemade ice cream seems like a nice thing that grandmothers make for their grandchildren in the summer. I have no grandchildren, but I decided to give it a go it anyway. I used this recipe from Glorious Treats.


  • 2 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk (whole)

  • 1/4 cup honey, warmed slightly

  • 6 Tablespoons sugar

  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 large (or 3 medium) fresh peaches

First, we started chopping up the peaches. You're supposed to puree the first peach, and dice the rest. Julie and I used three medium peaches for our ice cream. The recipe recommends you dice the peaches to about the size of a pea, but you can cut 'em up larger or smaller depending on how chunky you want your ice cream to be. Ours was pretty chunky (mmm!)

Then, mix the rest of the ingredients into a large bowl, and whisk. Add in the cream, milk, honey, sugar, and vanilla. Once that is mixed, pour in the peach puree and the rest of the diced peaches, and stir again.

Pour the mixture into the ice cream machine, and follow the instructions on the ice cream maker. If you've never used one (welcome to the club...that I just got kicked out of...because I just learned how to use one), it's easier than it looks! You simply pour the gonna-be-ice-cream into the part of the ice cream maker that looks like a time capsule. We'll call this the ice cream capsule. 

Once the capsule lid is tightly secured, turn the machine on, and pour both ice and ice cream salt in between the ice cream capsule and the outside. Then, while you wait for your ice cream to freeze, magic happens. It should take about thirty minutes for the ice cream to be the right consistency.

Annnnnnnd, we did it!! The ice cream tasted really good--I was surprised the homemade version tasted so sweet! 

The toppings we added definitely helped to take the peach ice cream to another level. My favorite topping, surprisingly, were the nuts. I'm not normally a big fan of nuts on ice cream, but in this case: yes.

So, I'd consider homemade ice cream a success. If you want to check out the video, click here and jump to 2:50 (unless you want to watch the Springfield, MO local news.) Maybe next time I'll reach for the stars and try chocolate chip cookie dough?!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Head Scarf Style

My favorite weather is upon us! I know, I know. I'm crazy. Maybe it's because I was born in July, but I have always loved the summer heat. My recent trip to India was great for giving a dose of the heatwave I was craving, and bonus: It reminded me of how much I love summer head scarves!

India has the most beautiful textiles I've ever seen. Their silk scarves are unreal, really. My lovely BFF and college roommate, Angeline, has been in town for a bit (lucky me!), so we put together this post on some of our favorite scarf styles.

Head scarves are perfect for a few reasons, like if you didn't wash your hair, or if you have really bad roots. Cover it up in style! They're great for looking a little put together when you don't have a lot of time to spend on your hair.

Since Angeline and I have (clearly) very different hair types and textures, we decided to show you some of our favorites for curly and straight hair.

1. This is a great standby for a really hot day. Throw your hair up, keep it out of your face with a head scarf. Folding it into a triangle and tying it on the side gives a cute, retro feel.

2. For this look, pull your hair into a messy side bun, and use the scarf to cover the bun. Twist the scarf around the bun if you have a lot of excess fabric, and then tie it in a loose, floppy knot above your head. 

3. Every time Ange wears her hair like this, I'm always wondering "How did she do it???" It's easier than it looks! She wraps the scarf around the front of her head, pulls all of her hair to the side, and twist it all together. She keeps twisting until it wraps itself into a bun, and then she uses a bobby pin to hold it together. 
Side note: Angeline is a bobby pin wizard. I think I would have to use about 15 for my hair to stay like that.

4. The ole hippie standby, AKA probably the easiest way ever to tie a scarf into your hair. The trick here is to go just a liiiiiittle bit above and beyond tying a piece of fabric around your head. It'll look like you tried harder if you spend about 30 seconds adding a small braid or two. 

5. The "Little Bow Peep." When using a scarf as a headband, make bunny ears (like you're tying a shoelace) with the ends. Then, when you tie the material in a double knot, it will make a cutie little peek-a-boo bow. Precious, huh?

6. Last but not least, the "tie-your-head-scarf-into-your-braid" standby. The catch on this one is to use a little clear elastic where you would normally tie your hair into a side pony. Then, separate the ends of the scarf into two of your braid strands, and braid on! Tie the remaining scarf at the bottom over your hair elastic.

Annnnnd that's it for summer head scarves! Do you guys have any other tips for beat-the-heat hair?

Friday, June 20, 2014

She Links Things {1}

Here's something new I'm starting: She Links Things. It is, as you might have guessed, a link pack! There are so many interesting things to learn on the web, and I often receive links from my friends (thanks, guys!) for new stuff to check out. So, here's what I've linked this week.

1. My favorite pin right now.
2. Sweet Springfield was somehow ranked as the #1 most dangerous city in America.
3. Midland Reach is a new site dedicated to business development for creatives. Yes, please.
5. Local band releases new song. (Warning: It will get stuck in your head.)
6. Evangel people: I don't know who made this, but it's hilarious. My favorite part is that "married" is an option to answer "Which word best describes you?"
7. This cute game for testing your kerning skillz.
8. And, on a different note, this teenager addicted to taking the perfect selfie.

Feel free to email me at shelearnsthings(at)gmail(dot)com to suggest links for next week!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

How to Take a Compliment

Can't you take a joke? Yes. Absolutely. Can't you take a compliment? Now that's a different story.


Recently, someone complimented my hair. It doesn't seem too blog-worthy, really, but I definitely learned from it. She said something kind and sincere like, "I love your hair! Have you gotten it done recently?" and my gut reaction was "ew, no." Here's the problem: "Ew, no" was what I said out loud, too. I rattled off a list longer than my locks on what was wrong with it. Split ends, roots, frizzy, the whole nine yards. She smiled and nodded, had nothing else to say, and I quickly realized I had made a mistake. 


You've probably heard the phrase "We accept the love we think we deserve." I would argue the same is true for compliments. We accept the compliments we think we deserve. So this is what I've learned lately:

Accept what you deserve
Obviously, don't take credit for something you don't deserve. If you worked on a project with a group, make sure you mention others who were involved in its success. If you borrowed a sweater from a friend and someone else likes it, give Sweater Girl a shout-out (or she probably won't let you borrow her sweaters anymore!) However, if it you are complimented on something that is personal to you, say a genuine thank you, and move on. No self-defense needed.  

Ignore your insecurities
This was my problem. I had a long line-item list of things that were wrong with my hair, and I chose to divulge them to her. The thing is, that puts the person complimenting you in a really awkward position. (Trust me from experience on this.) People don't typically go out of their way to say nice things unless they honestly mean them. Appreciate that, and give sincere thanks when someone is kind to you.

Take the focus off of yourself
When some people are given a compliment, they use it as a platform to talk about themselves. Oh, you love my hair? Awesome, I used Biolage Shampoo and Conditioner, my favorite Hot Tools curling wand, Big Sexy Hair Volumizing Hairspray, etc. etc. etc. Now I obviously didn't do that, but here's the kicker: I was still focused on myself. Rather than using her compliment as a right to brag, I used it as an open-door to start a conversation about everything that I didn't like about myself. There will always be things that we don't like about ourselves, but when another person sincerely appreciates them, I think that instead of raising a platform for self-doubt, it should help us to appreciate those things more. 


I've made a sincere effort since then to accept compliments that I deserve, even when I might feel like I could have done better or had frizzy hair. Has anybody else had an experience like this - either being the complimenter or the compliment-ee? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Photos were left unedited, and all compliments go to Nick Warnock.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Write On.

If you know me very well, or if you've stalked my Twitter bio, you'll know that ink on paper is my idea of the perfect romance. Why, though? Plain and simple, writing is good for you. Don't believe me? Keep reading.

I have talked about writing for others in the past, but this post is more about writing for yourself. Writing makes people feel better. Right??! There is loads of research to show that individuals who practice expressive writing show lower levels of stress, lower blood pressure, sleep better at night, etc. etc. etc.

Personally, I try to make a habit of journaling, but I don't tend to make it a priority unless I really feel like I need to. Usually it's when I have a lot of things to vent that I turn to paper. Paper is never going to be too busy for you, compare itself to you, raise judgmental eyebrows at you, or laugh at you. Paper is a pretty good listener that way.

When looking back through old journals, I can tell which seasons of life were tough because I journaled, like, every day

Sure, it makes sense that expressive writing can help you cope with emotional pain, but physical pain? That seems like a bit much. (Or so I thought.) Turns out, there is a lot of research that supports this. In this one super-cool study, adults who spent time writing about trauma experienced physical healing nearly twice as fast as others who didn't write. 

There is also scientific proof that writing things down helps you to learn them better. Now, you guys know I'm all about learning, so I write things down, a lot. I feel like I brainstorm better on paper than on a computer - I like how a blank 8.5x10 allows me to write important things smaller or larger, or sideways, or circle them about 8 million times if I want. There is research that shows how writing letters and vocab benefits those learning a language; many psychologists believe that the extra component of muscle memory and taking the additional time to put pen to paper helps solidify things in your brain.

Clearly, there are many benefits to ink on paper, so write on.