Adding Character to our Bland House

It was very exciting to me to read a blog article yesterday called, How to Add "Old House" Character & Charm To Your Newer Home.  It's by a blogger named Traci at Beneath My Heart.  She posted about replacing boring builder-grade doors with paneled doors. My heart started beating faster.... I knew immediately that I wanted to replace the kitchen pantry door...I just hated the cheap look of that old brown door, and it had a hole it in, too!
Traci inspired me so much that I convinced my sweet Hubs to go out in the rain & snow with me to ReStore, which is Habitat for Humanity's re-sale store.  I didn't know if we would find what I wanted, but the helpful "door lady" was great and led me straight to the right door!  It's not "antique" but its a sight better than what we had:

This project cost us just $10 for the door, and it took less than an hour to remove the old door, "finagle" the old hinges into the right spot on the new door, change over the door knob, and hang the new door into place.  I have to give my Hubs a huge THANK YOU for putting up with my impulsive idea, and for all his help on this project.  (I think he liked the excuse to work with his tools.)  
One thing I want to do is keep looking for a new door knob, to add some more character...something like this:

I think I'm going to be carrying around a list of all the door sizes in our house!  Thank you, Traci for your fantastic ideas!

UPDATE! Today I painted the word PANTRY on the door, and I think it turned out just right, and the project is complete. Found the idea on Pinterest from Home Spun Threads. Thank you, Aimee! 
2nd UPDATE! 8-19-2012:
This week my Hubs and I found a glass door knob at ReStore for just $7.50, and then found the door plates we needed at a local antique vendor-mall.  Here they are in place!

Blessings, Juju

Banana Oat Protein Pancakes

Banana Oat Protein Pancakes

Credit for this recipe goes to Darla at

Have your griddle ready, spray with non-stick cooking spray, heat on low, otherwise your pancakes will cook too fast on the outside and be gooey on the inside.
2 ripe bananas
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats (I used oat flour) (if you use oats, you will have to grind it in your blender and grind until flour consistency first)
1 scoop whey vanilla protein
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 Tablespoon flax meal
1 Tablespoon wheat germ
Vanilla soy milk (or nonfat milk) you will add this to desired consistency

In a blender, mix ripe banana, egg whites, and vanilla. Add the rest of the ingredients except milk and mix on low. The mixture will be thick at this point. Add just enough soy (or skim) milk to make the mixture pourable (careful not to make runny), so add a bit, mix and check.
Pour batter onto your prepared griddle, cook on one side a few minutes, (check for color by gently lifting an edge), and if to your liking, flip over and cook the rest of the way. This recipe makes 4 large or 6 medium pancakes. 

For us, a thin "schmear" of peanut butter and some sugar-free syrup finished it off...or rather, Hubs and I finished off this yummy breakfast!

Salisbury Steak Deluxe

One of our son's favorite meals that he requests when we are together is Salisbury Steak Deluxe.  I found the recipe years ago in a Country magazine (in those days they had the recipe cards that you could cut out).  You can still find it online here, but I've made a few adjustments since it's just me and the Hubs now, and we are trying to eat less fat and calories.

Salisbury Steak Deluxe
Modified from Country & Taste of Home Magazines
Serves 4

1 can low fat Cream of Mushroom soup, undiluted
1 Tablespoon mustard
2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 whole egg
¼ cup dry Fat Free crackers (5)
3 Tablespoons finely chopped onion
¼ teaspoon Salt & a dash of pepper
1 pound extra lean ground beef
Fat Free nonstick spray
½ cup water

In a bowl, combine soup, mustard & Worcestershire sauce; blend well and set aside.
In another bowl, lightly beat the egg. Add cracker crumbs, salt & pepper, onion, and 3 Tablespoons of the soup mixture. Add beef and mix well. Shape into 4 patties.
Cook patties in a large skillet sprayed with nonstick spray, turning carefully.
Combine remaining soup mixture with water; pour over cooked patties, and cook, covered on low for 10 to 15 minutes, or until meat is done.

The meat mixture can be used for making meatballs, if desired. Just discard the remaining soup mixture, OR mix with another can of cream of mushroom soup as the sauce for Saucy Meatballs -n- Noodles. We like No-Yolks fat free noodles.

Dinner is ready, so bye for now!  ~ Juju
P.S. Tomorrow for lunch? Salisbury Steak Sandwiches!