Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Are you guys ready for a fun and easy sweet treat? I know you are!

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

One of my husband’s favorite desserts is cookie ice cream sandwiches and he’s always asking if we can make them. I’m always hesitant because I don’t usually feel like baking dozens of cookies and store bought cookies aren’t usually the right texture for optimal ice cream sandwich making. At least that’s what I thought until I found out about the new Otis Smunkmeyer cookies! Click here to find them in a store near you.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Their cookies are honestly delicious and are the perfect size and texture for cookie sandwiches. They also have “No Funky Stuff”, meaning they’re made without artificial flavors or colors, high-fructose corn syrup, or partially hydrogenated oil. With cookie baking out of the picture, I have no excuse to not make cookie sandwiches at home. This is such an easy and fun dessert to make and the extras can easily be stored in the freezer for later enjoyment. This is also a great dessert to make with kids! They’re the perfect weekend or after school snack for those days when your kids particularly deserve it.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

What you need:

Otis Spunkmeyer Cookies

Ice cream

Semi-sweet chocolate chips

Toppings

 

Some of my favorite toppings are snowcaps, crushed potato chips, toffee bits, coconut, sprinkles, and sea salt.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

First you’re going to make the sandwiches. Just put a scoop of ice cream in between two cookies and lightly press together. Place them back into the freezer until you get your dipping chocolate and toppings ready.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Empty a bag of chocolate chips into a glass bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds and then stir for 30 seconds. Repeat this until the chocolate is melted and glossy.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Dip half of the cookie sandwiches in the melted chocolate and then dip in your toppings. Place them on a cookie sheet and put them back into the freezer until the chocolate is set.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

If you have left over sandwiches you can store them in your freezer in ziplock bags or air tight containers.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream SandwichesBut wait, there’s more! WANT A CHANCE TO WIN $250 VISA GIFT CARD??  Otis Smunkmeyer and I have a challenge for you! We want to see your Otis Smunkmeyer recipe hacks. Show us what you can come up with using the new line of Otis Smunkmeyer “No Funky Stuff” products by posting a picture of your recipe and tagging us on social media (handles below). Be sure to use the hashtag #OtisSnackHack. Contest ends 9/28/2016, so hurry up and get your snack on!

Instagram: @melodrama & @OtisSmunkmeyer
Twitter: @melodramablog & @Otis_Spunkmeyer

 

This post was sponsored by my friends at Otis Spunkmeyer, but all opinions are my own.

Watermelon Rosemary Agua Fresca

Hello, friends. I’m going to give you a quick little recipe for something often I drink to avoid drinking actual water (because water sucks).

I love watermelon and usually have it in my refrigerator at all times if possible. Most of the time I’ll eat some and then use the rest to make agua de sandía (watermelon water). This has always been my favorite agua fresca (aside from horchata of course), and I’ve played around with a few variations, but this is one of my favorites for this time of year because it incorporates lemon and rosemary. I don’t like mine to be too sweet, but you can adjust the sugar to your taste depending on how naturally sweet your melon is.

Watermelon Rosemary Agua Fresca

Ingredients:

Half of a large ripe watermelon
Juice from half of a large lemon
1 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 sprig rosemary
Ice

Inside of a large pitcher, muddle the sugar and sprig rosemary. In a blender, blend watermelon and water together. Pour watermelon mixture through a strainer into your pitcher (sometimes I skip this part if I’m feeling pulpy) and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add ice and serve cold.

(Optional: Add a shot of tequila and sing Beyonce’s lyric “I’ve been drinkin…watermelonnnn”.)

Enjoy!

 

DIY White and Gold Light-Up Halloween Pumpkin Makeover

Autumn is just around the corner and it’s time to start decorating! First up, Halloween! I absolutely love Halloween, but it’s not really my personal style to do a lot of gore or tons of orange and black in my home. One of the things I like to do with my Halloween decor is try to make it fit in with my home’s existing style. Here’s a really quick and easy way I updated a pre-lit, cheapy plastic pumpkin that I found for for $6. Isn’t he cute?

DIY Gold and White Halloween Light-Up Pumpkin (4).jpgSpray paint. That’s all you need. I went with gold and white of course.

DIY Gold and White Halloween Light-Up Pumpkin (3).jpgI painted the entire pumpkin with white satin paint (satin or gloss work best) and then sprayed the stem gold. I didn’t use tape or anything around the stem because I like the way the gold over-spray looks on the top of the pumpkin.

diy-gold-and-white-halloween-light-up-pumpkin-2

Cute, right?! I think I’m going to have to pick up a few more pumpkins and try different colors.

before-and-after-pumpkin

Anyway, easy peasy! Super cute and fits in perfectly with the rest of my decor.

diy-gold-and-white-halloween-light-up-pumpkin

IKEA HACK: KARLSTAD Pink Mid-Century Inspired Sofa Makeover

Ohhhh man, you guys. I’m reallllly excited about this project. Bear with me because there’s a lot to cover (no pun intended).

A while back I posted about how I was on the hunt for a new sofa and narrowed down a few of my favorite contenders. One of the contenders was the KARLSTAD from IKEA because I knew I could save a lot of money by attempting a hack, and thanks to a pretty hefty tax audit (kill me) that’s what I ended up having to do. As luck would have it I found a perfect KARLSTAD at IKEA for $250 in the clearance section. A lot of you already know that I’m no stranger to IKEA Hacking, but it has been a while since I did one so I was feeling up to the challenge. Luckily it didn’t take long before I knew exactly what I wanted to do in order to make it come close to the couch of my dreams.

 

KARLSTAD IKEA HACK

The KARLSTAD is pretty much an IKEA staple and I’m sure you’ve seen it in many homes. It has clean, modern lines and comes with an easily removable slip cover. Perfect for my hacking plan. The one I bought had a grey cover and my IKEA was sold out of the white slip cover, but luckily my best friend in Florida found one at her store and was able to send it to me. Since KARLSTADs have completely removable slip covers I knew I could dye it to be whatever color I wanted.

Rit Petal Pink

I picked up a few boxes of Rit dye in Petal Pink. I filled my bathtub with boiling water and dye and soaked the slip cover until it was saturated.Dye Sofa Slip Covers in Bath Tub Then I promptly had a minor freak out because it didn’t turn out the rosey/blush pink color that I wanted and that appeared on the box. Dye Karlstad Sofa Slip Cover

I took a deep breath, refusing to be defeated, and rushed to the fabric store to grab some Rit Color Remover, a magical powder that  gently removes all of your regrets and gives you a clean start. If only I could bathe myself in it. Just kidding…!

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How to remove Rit dye

After a quick soak the slip cover was back to white. I knew at this point I was going to have to custom mix my own shade of pink so I went back to the fabric store for the 5th time and picked up more dye.

I can’t tell you the exact ratios of these colors that I used for my shade because I was constantly adjusting and testing the color. I want to say it was something like 4 parts pink, 1/2 part yellow, 1/8 part tan, but I’m not 100% sure so don’t come back yelling at me if yours turns out gross. I also diluted it a lot more than the first time so the color would be more pastel.

My husband and I worked nervously and quickly, scalding our hands and sweating over the boiling dye bath in our typical Melo-dramatic style, but it was worth it. It worked out perfectly!img_4426-3

 

Dying the slip cover was only the first step. I wanted new legs and pretty tufting, and dammit that’s what I would get. These steps were actually much easier and less annoying than the dye part.

I changed the legs on my last KARLSTAD Love Seat in the past, so I knew that wouldn’t be a big deal. I used mid-century style furniture legs that I got from Lowe’s for like $2 and spray painted them gold and white.

DIY Furniture legs for $2

Then I installed a top plate and attached the legs to the corners of the sofa.

Change the legs on your sofa for under $20I wanted to have legs in the center of the sofa, too. Partly for more support, but mostly because I like the look of it.

For this I just drilled a hole and inserted the leg directly into the wood.

Change the legs on your sofa for under $20

That would have looked great on it’s own but I wanted tufting. I had spare fabric from an extra piece of slip cover that I found in the clearance bin at IKEA. I used this for my color test strips and then dyed a piece with the plan of covering buttons for tufting.

I used 7/8″  button cover kit and thread to make my tufting buttons, much like I did in this past IKEA hack.DIY Upholstery Button Covers

Then I attached the buttons to upholstery string and used a long upholstery needle to feed the string through the cushion. I pulled the string tight and used these decorative buttons to anchor the string on the back of cushion. I didn’t want to go through the back of the cushion cover, and a knot would have just pulled back through the cushion insert, so I used the decorative buttons to hold my tufting in place. Am I making any sense at this point? Hopefully these visuals help.DIY Couch Cushion TuftingDIY Couch Cushion Tufting

And voila!

KARLSTAD SOFA IKEA HACK: Mid-Century Inspired Pink Sofa

The decorative pillows are also from IKEA.KARLSTAD SOFA IKEA HACK: Mid-Century Inspired Pink SofaI love the way the warm pink looks with the white and gold legs.KARLSTAD SOFA IKEA HACK: Mid-Century Inspired Pink SofaI’m so excited to finally have a dreamy pink couch! And for less than $300!KARLSTAD SOFA IKEA HACK: Mid-Century Inspired Pink Sofa

 

Melodrama Summer Playlist 2016

President Obama and others have been sharing their summer playlists so I figured it was about time I shared mine as well. Here are some of my favorite summer songs for you!

Click here for Melodrama Summer Playlist 2016

What are your favorite summer tunes? Let me know in the comments!

 

DIY White VCT Tile Bedroom Flooring

Up until about a month ago I had carpet in my bedroom and I HATED IT. Between allergies, constant city dust, and senior dogs, having carpet just wasn’t right for our lifestyle. I rent and didn’t think changing the floors would ever be an option, but when it was time to renew our lease and our manager offered to replace or clean our carpet, I seized the opportunity to ask if we could replace the floors at our own expense instead. They surprisingly agreed to my request and gave me the freedom to pick the flooring option of my choice.

I knew whatever option I chose wouldn’t match the rest of the apartment anyway, so I decided to give in to my desire for white floors. I did some research and the easiest and most cost effective of our options seemed to be VCT (vinyl composite tile).  Plus, I’m always down for a mid-century vibe and you can’t get anymore mid-century than vinyl tiles.


I ordered a bunch of samples and ended up choosing Armstrong’s Carnival White , an off-white color with multicolored specks priced at $0.91 per square foot. It’s really cute and has the vintage speckled look I was going for, but was the most cost effective for me as well. Since I rent I didn’t want to invest too much, if you get what I mean. 

This was my first time installing VCT tiles so I’m no expert, but I can tell you that there are some very good and thorough tutorials on YouTube that can explain the techniques you need better than I can through pictures. If you’re planning on doing this project I highly recommend watching several of them.

Luckily my room is pretty much a square so there wasn’t many complicated cuts and I was able to finish the room within a day, by myself, spending less than $300 total.

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)Here’s a terrible picture of what I started with. As you can see the dark beige carpet and old pink paint absorbed most of the light in the room. The first thing I had to do was remove the old carpet. That was a lot easier than expected and I was able to do it all in one piece. After that I pried up the tack strips and used pliers to remove any stray staples in the floor.

 

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

Then we took the opportunity to paint the walls a nice high reflective white .

After the walls were done I got started on the floor. I used a chalk reel to mark the center points of the room where I would begin laying tiles.

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

Next I dry laid some tiles to make sure they would be even and to decide on which way I wanted the speckled pattern to run. A lot of of the time the tile is installed with an alternating pattern but I decided to run mine all in one direction for a seamless look.

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

Then I had to use a small notch tile trowel to apply adhesive to the floor. I want to note that this took longer than expected to dry, and didn’t dry clear like the container said it would. I let it dry for SEVERAL hours until it was tacky and a dark amber color. If you start laying the tiles too soon they’ll slide around and make you regret everything. Also, wearing knee pads will save your life.Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

At this point my dog decided to get around my barricade and lay directly in the glue, promptly getting stuck and full of the stickiest glue that no dog shampoo on earth could remove. After throwing him in a bath to soak and cutting his hair, I was able to continue onto actually laying the tile.

I didn’t get pics of that process because I had to move fast, but I started from the middle line and worked my way out. Once I got to the edges I used a utility knife to cut the edge tiles to size. YouTube will explain all that to you in better visual detail.

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

As you can see there were some small gaps between the tile and the wall. You can put a piece of trim around there to finish it off or you can use caulking to fill it in like I did.

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

For the threshold I simply used a piece of flat molding and wedged it in the door frame. Simple and sleek. Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)I let the tile set for about a day and then mopped it and applied four coats of floor polish with a microfiber mop. Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

Tips for Installing VCT flooring (Vinyl Composite Tiles)

What a difference! My room feels so much cooler, fresher, and brighter! I only wish I had done this sooner. Here’s how it looks furnished. Much better than before!

Vintage California Style Bedroom Decor

DIY Yellow Fringe Blackout Curtains

You guys, let me start by saying I’m bummed because I lost all of the how-to pics from this project when my old computer died, BUT I still wanted to share how easy it is to make your own curtains.

I couldn’t find any light blocking curtains that I liked for my bedroom so I took on the task of making my own. Curtains are the easiest thing to make if you can sew a straight line. All you need is enough fabric to make a panel long enough to fit your window and hem all four sides, leaving a big enough loop at the top to fit a curtain rod through. I found a really nice and inexpensive fabric in the perfect shade of buttercup yellow, but the problem was that it was too thin and let a lot of light through. We’re not morning people so this was a no-no. To remedy the problem all I did was lined my fabric with an old black out curtain from IKEA. Easy enough!

 

IMG_4254.jpgDoing that completely blocked any light from coming into my bedroom and also added some much needed weight and heft to the panel.

IMG_4264.jpgFor some extra flair I added a strip of vintage looking rope fringe to the top.IMG_4270.jpg

 

 

IMG_4252.jpgTada! Stay tuned for more bedroom decor updates and be sure to follow along on Instagram.