Check out the latest posts from the blog, a sweet little corner of The Junq Drawer created to share all the lovely home decor, DIY and other lifestyle things!
Simple & Easy: Cold Brew Coffee
youve_got_mail_17I'll never forget the first time I realized that caffeine, in the form of coffee, was in fact addictive. It was Tom Hanks in You've Got Mail telling his business partner they would sell "legal addictive stimulants" in their massive book store. Now, I was 14 years old, so cut me some slack for not realizing it before that. (Ha!) All that to say...I'm pretty sure I am in fact addicted to coffee. The problem is I don't just want folgers brewed coffee. I want iced coffee. And not just any iced coffee. I want an iced cold brew with vanilla and cream, just like I order at Starbucks and any other coffee shop. And that becomes quite expensive, even at the $2-3 price tag. The other problem I have is that homemade NEVER tastes the same and it takes so much more work. I wanna pull up to the drive thru window in my bleary-eyed state and have the cold, delicious, creamy coffee placed into my hands ready to sip. So my goal here was to find a recipe, simple, easy, and just as good if not better than the kind I can buy ready made. After a little bit of trial and error, here is the recipe and process I have found to be the best:JES_9655 1/2 cup of coarsely ground coffee 2 cups of filtered water (double or triple that recipe as you like) Combine in a pitcher or French press (I recommend a French press. You can purchase the one I used at Ikea for 8.99).  Stir, so that all of the coffee grounds get wet.JES_9671 Let sit for 24 hours minimum, at room temperature. Press down the filter on your French press to filter our the coffee grounds. This is the simplest way to do it. If you find yourself with out a French press, you can use a sieve with muslin/cheese cloth or paper towels to catch the grounds. Place the brewed coffee in the fridge until cold. Now you're ready to go! But this is the tricky part. In order to prepare it the way you like best, you may have to do some additional trial and error. I'll tell you what worked best for me: Fill your cup all the way up with ice. Pour coffee over ice (coffee is fairly concentrated and depending on the coffee you used, you may need a tad bit of filtered water added to dilute it. This is up to you!). Add a splash of half and half. Add 1-2 tablespoons of vanilla syrup. Stir, add a straw if you like, and done!!!edit The hardest part about this is the 24 hour waiting period. But once it's done, there is no waiting! And the trick now will be to brew more while I still have some in the fridge! Proper preparation prevents...waiting for coffee. I think that's how that phrase goes. Amanda Signature
S&L Devo: By Your Love
Love is all you need. The Beatles had it right on this one. Love is all you need. It conquers all. It never fails. As moms, we get to share love with our little ones every day. There is no greater joy than covering your kids in love. After we had our daughter, my husband and I were in awe of how much we loved her, from that very first moment, every coo and every giggle, and while each period of her growth has brought more and more joy, it is also fraught with challenges. We've entered the toddler stage now, complete with "No, ma'am" attitudes and temper tantrums. (At least she's polite when she's defiant, right?) Yet, no matter how angry her behavior can make me, I am always one tiny-human hug, kiss or smile away from complete and utter forgiveness. Why? Because this little girl is my child. She is what my heart longed for. She brings me the greatest joy imaginable, and for her I truly have unconditional love. What a glimpse that gives us into the love our Father has for us! We throw adult-sized temper tantrums when things don't go our way, we complain and we defy Him; yet, He is one apology away from complete and utter forgiveness. Every. Single. Time. Psalm 147 tells us our God delights in us. Zephaniah 3 shares, "The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing." Did you read that? He rejoices in us! That love that we have for our kids that is unexplainable? God has that times a million for each of us! His love doesn't always look the way we want. Sometimes it's saying no to protect us from something or saying "not right now" because He has something better in store. But when we really obey Him and step back to see Him moving, God's love is more than we could ever dream of! He has organized His entire plan around us spending eternity with Him. He is there when we fall, surrounding us with love, and He is there when we triumph, celebrating alongside us. He has our bests interests at heart always, and guides us, just as we do our children. I am constantly reminded as I watch my daughter play and steer her away from things that could hurt her that God does just the same for me. I tend to focus on my desires or on the task at hand, sometimes without looking up to see what's coming. My Father, though, He sees everything, and He leads me along the better path to help me overcome the obstacles and avoid situations I might otherwise find myself in. Because He loves me. Love is the most important thing we can share with our kids. They feel secure when they are loved. They feel important and confident when they are loved.  They never feel alone when they are loved, and they know Jesus when they are loved because He is love. The world certainly needs to know that we are disciples of Christ, and our example is living proof of that. Sometimes, I think we overlook that a huge part of "the world" is our children; that our love showered on them points them to the love of the Father. So this mother's day, as you hug your kids or your mom or a mother figure in your life, remember how much more your Heavenly Father loves you and find peace in His presence because when the love of the Father is in us, it is evident to the world. Mother's Day w Text No logo mens
S&L Devo: Rest

Sometimes, life can get you down. There are the stresses and pressures of a job, a relationship, parenthood, an illness, caring for an elderly parent, serving in any capacity... all of it can drain you. It doesn't mean these are bad things or things to be avoided. It just means we need to run to our Savior when we feel we've gotten weary. When our burdens are so heavy we feel the weight of them might break us, those are the times he longs for us to come to him. He promises to give us rest. So today, wherever you may find yourself, in the midst of whatever circumstances or struggles you may be facing, take a moment to talk to Jesus and accept the rest and peace that only He can offer. Happy weekend, friends. ? Rest
S&L Devo: Face of God

See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my heavenly Father. Matthew 18:10 (more…)
S&L Devo: Cultivate
Springtime is here! I don't know about you, but spring in our family means coffee on the porch in the mornings, and afternoons working in our backyard garden. It's a lot of work to get the garden weeded, tilled, planted and to keep it watered, but the payoff is a beautiful backyard landscape and a lower grocery bill. If we're honest, isn't that the way it is in our relationship with God? Some days it takes a lot of effort to lift up our eyes and take up our crosses. Other days we can see Him moving, and He feels so close we'd swear we can hear Him whispering in our ears. Either way, that relationship requires cultivating, and the devil will do whatever he can to distract us. But take one look outside on a beautiful spring day, and God's love for us is evident in every detail he so carefully planned out with us in mind! The next time you feel isolated or distanced from God's love, curl up with a cup of coffee and remember His promise. "Neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love." Cultivate
Welcome to Salt & Life!

We are two friends who love being mamas and being ambitious. From power tools and paintbrushes to home decorating and parenting, we are excited to share our tips, tricks, tutorials and inspiration with you. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest and subscribe to the blog for updates on our most recent posts.