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Spring Rolls Experiment

Click HERE For Printable Recipe

I love making Asian dishes. My favorites to make and eat are yakisoba, ramen, beef bulgogi, miso soup, onigiri, tamagoyaki, and sushi (kappa maki). I kept seeing different recipes using rice paper and so I thought I’d give spring rolls a go.

After a few YouTube videos (this one in particular), I gathered the ingredients and quickly realized a few things.

There is an art to using rice paper properly, too much water, too little water can complicate the rolling process. I would either overfill or underfill and I am definitely not skilled in the wrapping.

But, no matter how ugly, they were still delicious. I was too lazy to make any dipping sauces, using what I had in my fridge, House of Tsang Bangkok Peanut Sauce and this Sweet Chili Sauce.

We also tried frying them, which created an interesting texture and nice greasy flavor (if you’re into that sort of thing). But I think I’ll use egg roll wrappers for frying next time. The non-fried rolls were great the next day for lunch.


  • 12 ounces small shrimp (uncooked, peeled, and deveined)*
  • 3 carrots (peeled and julienned)
  • 1 cucumber (julienned or cut into small strips)
  • 3 ounces vermicelli rice noodles
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 15 Rice paper sheets



  1. In a large pot, bring water to a boil, and cook shrimp for 2-3 minutes (depending on the size)
  2. Once shrimp is done (should turn pink), drain and allow to cool
  3. Prepare noodles according to package instructions
  4. Once noodles are cooked, drain and rinse with cold water
  5. Add water to a large bowl or pie plate, dip rice paper in for a few seconds and then place on a surface to prepare to roll
  6. Place noodles, carrots, cucumber, shrimp and cilantro on rice paper and roll once, fold in the corners, and continue to roll, keeping a secure grip till you reach the other side.
  7. Dip in your favorite sauce and enjoy!

*If using large shrimp, slice in half after cooking and cooling

Decorating Plans

I really like making design boards. I cannot imagine trying to pick flooring, lighting, and paint without creating a design board to hash out all the ideas my head is constantly filled with (mostly due to Pinterest).

Working with what I already have, and wanting to keep costs low, I opted for inexpensive lighting and flooring. I kept paint colors to a minimum. I did spend money on things like quality plumbing fixtures. I also need to move in soon, so I tried to choose things that were easy to install.


To completely understand what I was initially working with, I have to share the photos of the house originally (when still occupied by the previous owners). There was no way I was moving in here as it was.

To keep things simple and easy I chose two paint colors, Benjamin Moore’s White Dove for the north side of the house, and Benjamin Moore’s Chantilly Lace for the south side of the house. The flooring is Pergo Outlast in Vintage Tobacco. This will be carried throughout the first floor except for the two bathrooms and the kitchen.

The entryway is stairs (up or down), with tall ceilings and big windows. So you will be able to see this chandelier from the living room. I wish we would have added more lights in the living room but I think with table and floor lamps, the entryway chandelier will provide plenty of light.

I bought some new lamps from Target (similar look to the Pottery Barn Faris Ceramic Table Lamps). I really love these dark olive green curtains from West Elm. But other than those two additions, the living room is pretty well furnished.

We had a picture light installed in the hallway and I am not entirely sure how I will feel about the starburst light but they were a two-pack and I was trying to cut costs where I could.


The hallway bathroom project definitely expanded. I was going to paint the old tub/shower combination, install new plumbing, and paint it but the guys decided to rip everything out and make a walk-in shower. I have to say this is the room I am most excited about.

I did splurge on the tile and plumbing fixtures. The tile looks like teak and will go on the walls of the shower. The rock mosaic tile will be installed on the floor of the shower. The laminate tile flooring looks gray in the photo but is more of an ivory color.


The guest bedroom was centered around this light fixture. I am going to use the master bedroom’s lamps, pillows, decor, and nightstands here.


The master bedroom is south facing so I chose Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace for the walls and ceiling. I wanted to light floors but in an effort to be less high maintenance, I continued the vintage tobacco color from the hallway.

I saw this very interesting light fixture on Amazon that I decided I needed to have and hopefully it isn’t complicated to install. I am using the living room’s lamps in here and purchased some inexpensive chest of drawers to use on both sides of the bed as nightstands.


This bathroom is strangely very small. In an effort to cut costs, I was just going to paint the tile in the shower and get new plumbing fixtures, but the guys ended up ripping out the old shower.

Brushed nickel is always the least expensive finish option so I did both the faucet and shower fixtures in that and chose a laminate floor that should be easy to install. Originally we were going to do a pedestal sink but decided to return it and do a vanity instead.

I originally purchased a gold light fixture but decided I didn’t like it so I’m currently trying to decide what exactly I want to go above the vanity here.


The kitchen has been gutted but finding cabinets is proving difficult. Looking at my top three kitchen inspo photos, I have concluded that I apparently want a dark countertop and white and gray backsplash. I like these cabinets painted in Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter. I do like the green, I picked a Sherwin William’s color called Night Owl as a second choice but I may end up with white cabinets which I will be fine with too.

The kitchen is on the south side of the house so I am painting it Benjamin Moore’s Chantilly Lace and using the Pergo Outlast in Sunbaked Sand Oak flooring. I am replacing the two flush mounts with the led faux canned lights and the florescent light about the sink with this pendant light.

I added to picture lights on the dining room wall to go on both sides of my china cabinet. If the cabinet had not almost doubled in price, I would have bought another one and put them side by side.


The basement and mudroom are last priority. We need to finish the sheet rock in the mudroom, paint, install flooring, a mop sink, and shelving. I have the flooring, which is the same as the bathrooms.

The basement will have the Sunbaked Sank Oak flooring and I want to paint it Benjamin Moore’s Pale Oak. Again, cutting cost by picking inexpensive lighting.


New House- Progress

After the initial demolition, our friend Anthony, who owns a construction company, helped with some additional demolition.

The guys removed damaged sheetrock, popcorn ceiling, the shower in the master bathroom, and the tub in the hallway bathroom.

Then they started replacing the sheetrock and constructing a walk-in shower.