Sunday, September 27, 2009
So very good and simple, we love Schlotzsky's but it's almost 2 hours away. We don't love it that much. I was determined to make a clone of our favorite sandwich and it worked, it's just like the Pastrami on Sourdough!
2 Slices Sourdough Bread
A few slices of high quality beef pastrami, shaved
1 slice of swiss cheese
1 tsp or tablespoon (according to your taste) of whole grain mustard
Butter for toasting
Coat outside of bread pieces with a little bit of butter, a spray butter works really well here. Coat inside of bread with mustard, it is important that you use whole grain it can be hard to find but it's worth it. If you want it really spicy coat both pieces of bread with the mustard, personally I like only one. Place bread buttered side down in a skillet set to medium heat, place cheese, meat, and other piece of bread on top. Grill on both sides until toasty.
I know it sounds too easy, but it really is delicious!
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Sunday: My special sandwiches (recipe will hopefully be posted later)
Monday: Chicken with Basil Cream Sauce
Tuesday: Taco Lasagna
Wednesday: Big Salad Night
Thursday: New recipe night
Friday: Date Night
Saturday: TBA in other words I have no idea! haha
Monday, May 4, 2009
This is a dish that could easily be doubled or tripled to feed and crowd.
1 1/2 cups Rice, uncooked (I used Minute rice)
1/2 pound Sausage
1/2 cup Onion, diced
1/2 cup Celery, diced
1/2 cup Red Bell Pepper, diced
2 cloves Garlic, minced or crushed
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
2 tablespoons dried Parsley
1 tablespoon Sugar
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 cup Chicken Broth or Stock
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
Cheese if you want, we love anything with cheese!
Cook rice according to package directions set aside to cool.
Heat Olive Oil in large skillet. Add Sausage, onion, celery, bell pepper. Cook until sausage is nicely browned. Add the rest of the ingredients including rice. Stir until liquid is absorbed and rice is heated through. We like cheesy dirty rice so we added just a bit of cheese at the end, that is entirely optional.
This makes a great freezer meal, which is why I used minute rice. Cook everything but the rice and chicken stock, freeze that in portions. All you have to do on the night you eat it is cook your rice. Then heat your meat mixture with chicken stock and rice and you are done! Super simple way to have dinner on the table in less than 10 minutes.
This post is linked to:
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
It was so cute and curvy. Looked like a great piece except for the fact that it was Oak. I never have like the heavy wood grain and dark color of oak, but that can be changed.
Isn't is beautiful! Best part it was only $10! It ended up costing a total of right at $20 with the spray paint. It's important on a piece that will get lots of use to use a high quality paint. Becca likes to read books in bed so I know she will lean on it a lot.
Head on over to see Rhonda at Southern Hospitality for a thrifting party.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Sunday: Orzo Salad
Monday: Subway, part of the save Chuck campaign.
Tuesday: Chicken Quesadillas (maybe one week it's on the plan I'll actually make it)
Wednesday: Big Salad
Thursday: Mexican Pizza knock-off, my version of the Taco Bell favorite
Firday: Date Night
For more great menu plans and recipes check out Orgjunkie.com.
Hi! That's me and my husband six months before we got married. I would give anything to look like that again, without the bangs. In comes trusty white spray paint to the rescue, for the frame not me. :)
Ahh, much better! My dilemma started here, what do I do with my newly updated frame. Have you seen some of the 3-D artwork around lately, I thought maybe I could create some myself. So I headed to hobby lobby to see if I could find some neat key's or maybe some keyholes I could use. This is what I found.
So cute! A whole set waiting for different projects. It is missing one key because I forgot to take a picture before I painted it, oops. Best of all metalwork was 50% off that week (it is a lot wait till it goes on sale to buy) so I got all five for $6.00. Not bad!
I didn't want to paint the back of the frame, instead I wanted a little bit of pattern. In comes trusty scrapbook paper. On sale at hobby lobby that week for a quarter a sheet. Another great score.
The end result.
A cute project if I do say so myself.
Cost break down:
Frame, free had for years
Spray paint, free left over from another job
Scrapbook paper, 25 cents
Not bad for $1.45! Just wait till the piece it will sit on is painted, you won't want to miss it.
This post is linked to (or will be) to We Are THAT family, Works for Me Wednesday.
Bissfully Domestic, check out the button in the side bar for the link.
Hooked On Houses, what are you hooked on?
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
So here is my bathroom that is being remodeled. Yea, it's just a blank patched up wall right now, we should have the machine to add texture tonight. If we manage to get that we will be able to get that done this weekend.
It's ugly but it will have help! The paint is a gorgeous blue from Glidden, called Mountain Creek. And yes that is dust you see on the top. Normally it takes me a very long time to pick a paint color, bu this one came easily! I bought it quick before I had a chance to change my mind, and that was quite a bit earlier than we would need it.
That's not the only thing going on the walls, no sir! We are putting white wainscoting on the lower half. It's a new product to us that looks very easy to use. I had it in my last bathroom but you could see the seem, that drove me crazy! Here is a picture of the product.
It's looks like a great product and I'm so excited that it could possibly be up soon.
Now, I know you are thinking wait why does she want brown and blue in a blue and white room. Here is my shower curtain.
See, blue and brown! It isn't hanging yet because I don't want to shame it, lol.
Nester I really NEED those prints. They would hang beautifully in my bathroom upon completion. Thanks for making me post about my bathroom as well. Maybe it will be done a little sooner.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Place 2-3 large chicken breast pieces in a crock pot with one can of enchilada sauce. That's it! Cook about 4 hours on high (check after about 3 I think my crockpot cooks a little slow) shred meat and let cook another 30 min. until enchilada sauce is absorbed. Perfectly seasoned shredded meat, great for enchiladas too!
Fillings are totally up to you. We like Onion and Bell Pepper sauteed in a little butter. Montery Jack and Pepper Jack Cheese. With a little bit of refried beans.
Take a flour tortilla, we prefer soft taco size, place a thin layer of refried beans on each side. Spray some butter spray or butter flavored cooking spray on the outside of each tortilla. Fill with your favorite fixing and cook in skillet until nice and crispy. Cut into wedges and serve. We like to dip ours in sour cream and salsa.
For more great recipes visit Jen @ Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.
And check out my button in the side bar to go to Blissfully Domestic. Where you can not only find great recipes but fantastic homemaking tips.
I did get to make the Cajun Dirty Rice, it was very good! It will be in a regular rotation, I'll be making up everything but the rice for the freezer really soon. I'll post the recipe tomorrow hopefully, if not tonight.
This week DH has requested some favorites. He would have the same thing week after week if I let him. That gets old to me very quick. Two will be carry overs from last week because of the take out.
Sunday: Ice Cream for dinner. Yes, I'm serious! It's a fun out of the ordinary treat sometimes and totally fun. Try it one night and see if you don't feel like a kid cheating before dinner. This is best done on a day when you have a late lunch.
Monday: Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
Tuesday: Tex Mex Egg Rolls
Wednesday: Chicken Qusadillas
Thursday: Sloppy Joe's
Friday: Date Night
Saturday: Not sure, we need a meatless meal. I'm tired of our usual ideas for that.
For more great menu plans and more recipes than you can handle be sure to check out Orgjunkie.com.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Once again my inspiration came from Jen over at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam. She is a wiz with her spray paint. She had a blog post about using it on brass. Yes, brass!
Let's face it brass has lost it's value. The only bad thing is there were so many pieces and some rather cool designs that were made. I, like most I'm sure, always looked past it at garage sales. Jen didn't and I for one am glad she decided to give brass another look. I found these lovely treasures at the first garage sale of the season.
My husband looked at me like I was crazy when I said I wanted them. He certainly didn't want any brass up anywhere, I couldn't blame him before Jen's post I didn't either. I decided to give the spray paint a try, if it didn't work I would only be out $2 (for all 4 pieces!) the spray paint I would only lose a trivial amount. On the way home we picked up a can of lacquer spray paint, to me lacquer gives a much better result than a traditional paint. Plus, it is a very durable surface that bonds to metal fairly well. This is the end result.
Isn't it cute! I got some rather good looking white pieces out o the deal. The butterflies are going in my nieces bedroom, it has lots of butterflies all over the place. The key will go in a spot with family photos as it is a play on our last name. I hope to find lot of different key's all over the place this year.
A few tips if you are planning on doing this yourself.
1. Clean your piece well. I like to wash it in regular soapy water, then rub alcohol all over. The alcohol makes sure you dissolve anything the detergent might have left behind or missed.
2. Go over lightly with FINE sandpaper. And I do mean lightly, if you go to deep the scratches will show.
3. Go over with alcohol once more. It gets the dust off and makes sure there is no lasting residue to interfere with the paint sticking.
4. Just like in my door redo make sure to go cover lightly, drips can happen easily and they aren't pretty.
Leave to dry and you have a great looking brass piece that can stand the test of time!
This post is linked to Hooked On Houses, what are you hooked on?
For more great Works for me Wednesday tips head on over to We Are THAT Family.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
This week is going to be a bit more simple.
Sunday: Pizza, not something we have often
Monday: Cajun Dirty Rice
Tuesday: Chicken Quesadillas
Wednesday: Big Salad night, I'm going to try to make this a weekly thing
Thursday: Tex-Mex Egg Rolls
Friday: Date Night, we always eat out
Saturday: Breakfast for Dinner, something we don't do often enough.
Nothing super fancy, the only recipe that is new to us will be the Dirty Rice. I'm hoping it will be a hit since it's from a freezer cooking cookbook.
I'm wanting to incorporate more meatless meals into our diet, if you have a great one let me know. I have a lentil and brown rice taco filling that I want to try but I'm scared, lol.
For more great menu options check out Menu Plan Monday over at Orgjunkie.com.
Friday, April 10, 2009
A few of my new favorite blogs.
A Soft Place to Land
Kimba has a wonderful blog filled with projects to make your home a soft place to land. I for one am going to her botanical prints project. I actually like hers better than the fancy pictures she posted. She is full of great inexpensive home decor ideas, and what she can do with a yard sale find and spray paint, it's amazing.
The Inspired Room
Melissa finds the most amazing home decor pictures to inspire you creativity. She also her own projects, she did an amazing window concealment here. Definitely one to check out.
Rhonda's blog holds a special place in my heart, us southern girls have to stick together. She finds the most amazing things at yard sales, I don't know how she does it. Decorating tips abound on this blog. Her foyer is changed out with the seasons and is amazing each time. Here is a springtime look.
A few good projects.
Dollar Store Crafts has an odd one this week, just too cute not to share. Alien Abduction Lamp.
Living with Lindsay has a cute bathtub storage idea here.
The Devine Homes hallway makeover is great!
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
I love buying garlic in bulk, especially the big containers of already peeled cloves. I throw those in my food processor and pulse till I get a minced texture. Add a little of olive oil and salt, then drop by the tablespoon in an ice tray. Make sure to really press it in, when hard pop out and put in a freezer bag. It is very easy to throw it in any recipe.
If someone in your family doesn't like chunky garlic bits let the food processor go until almost pureed. Add a little bit of olive oil to make it a little more liquid, garlic has a tendency to be paste like. Do the same process as above and use in any recipe asking for garlic.
It couldn't be easier and it is a huge time saver! Fresh garlic (even when frozen) tastes so much better in your recipes than garlic powder. Although, this year I am going to experiment with making my own powders.
For more great Works for me Wednesday tips visit We Are THAT Family.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
This week there will be a lot of new recipes. I'm getting tired of the same old thing day in, day out. You will see lots of chicken because it was on sale. Check back later for recipes if they make the cut.
Sunday: My dear husband is bringing home food from my favorite Chinese restaurant. He had to go south, the city we used to live in, so he said he would pick me up something to eat. He is the greatest!
Monday: Beef BBQ
Tuesday: Chicken in Herbed Mustard Sauce
Wednesday: Tomato Sauce and Noodles (and old one but it is so healthy we try to eat it often)
Thursday: Chicken Quesadillas with homemade Refried Beans
Friday: Date Night
Saturday: Spicy Lime Chicken with Black Bean and Rice Salad
For over 400 menu plans and lot of great recipes be sure to visit OrgJunkie.com!
Saturday, April 4, 2009
There were days I didn't want to enter, or even admit this was my door. I had gone shopping for a new door and the one I fell in love with was over $500, no thank you! I plan on moving away from this house and I'm not putting that kind of money into a door. Things like flooring I'll splurge on, a beautiful finish underfoot can make your whole day better. If you think I'm kidding save up and buy new carpet, tile, etc. and see how good you feel! I digress... Although I do not like the little window that has flowers etched into it, I'm not a flower etching kinda girl, I figured I could live with it. Being that my door is metal I know it was in great shape (not rot or termites) it just needed a spruce up. I armed myself with my trusty spray paint, this time in Cardinal Red Gloss by Rustoleum. Of course my spray paint and cleaning supplies.
We took the door off of the hinges and laid it flat in the front yard. I gave the door a good scrubbing, sanding, and taped off the window. One final once over with a damp cloth and let it dry. Then I went to town, making sure to do light coats so my paint wouldn't pool, it takes forever to dry if spray to much. I also fixed any holes and gaps in the door frame and sprayed with a regular white spray paint. Here is the after.
A door I actually want to come home to! As you can see the door isn't in perfect condition but it looks so much better! And from the street you can't tell it has any imperfections.
A few tips if you decided to tackle your front door.
1. Spray paint is just plain better, short of a professional spray job. Brushes leave brush marks. and you don't want that, trust me.
2. Take the door off of your hinges, it makes it a quicker job. You would think leaving it on would be best because you won't have to rehang it. It doesn't work like that.
3. Take the knob off, it is easier than spraying around it. Or do like I did and get a new one, we had one for a while so why not use it.
4. Do a good job of prepping!!! Yes I yelled, it is worth it to spend a little extra time doing a great prep job. Nothing would be worse than the paint starting to peel later because you didn't take the time to clean.
Following those tips my door still looks great and it is almost 7 months later.
We have almost finished our front porch redo. I'm still scouring for the perfect pieces for sections. Once it is complete (minus the spindles and post, I can't stand ours but that will take time to change) I'll let you take a look.
Check back next week when there will be more spray paint goodness, this time with brass!
This post is linked to Hooked on Houses, what are you hooked on?
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Becca spent spring break with us, just like last year. Last year it was hectic and a little nuts. I tried to fit everything I could in and that's when I was still working. This year I tried to do things a little differently, meaning slow down. It was amazing, I feel like we connected better than we had in a long time. I also got to catch up on the lives of the kids at school, I missed knowing what everyone did and said.
We did keep one tradition our annual Spring Break Picnic! Last year it had to be in the living room floor because I put it off and on the last day it rained. I should have taken the time to stop and do the little things instead of things like Chuck E. Cheese. Those aren't the things she will remember!
This year I believe we have started a new tradition, a walk around the lake. We have a beautiful lake at a park that has a 2.4 mile trail around it. We spent over an hour walking and chatting, it was blissful! She said we needed to make this a regular thing, I think she is right.
From our first attempt at a walk around the lake. Two dogs did well, one didn't. This is Becca with our oldest dog Princess, they are good buddies.
Becca pausing on one of the bridges over the lake. The picture really doesn't do the setting justice.
Head on over to see Amy at The Finer Things in Life, for more great Finer Things Friday posts.
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
This week we are supposed to ask the masses for help.
Mine is scheduling. Being a stay at home wife means I don't have to get up in the morning. However, it is a huge drawback if I don't. I can't seem to get anything done and I'm not sure what to do about it. If I don't have to be anywhere why get up early?
What is your schedule like? If you have kids now, how did you get up before kids?
For that matter, how do you get to sleep? If it difficult for you do you have any tricks?
Head on over to We Are THAT Family for more questions that need answers.
Monday, March 30, 2009
For every 1 cup of cream I crush 1 clove of garlic and add 1/4 to 1/2 cup cheese, depends on how long I wait for the cream to thicken.
Melt your butter in a skillet and add your crushed garlic. Cook for about 1 minute you don't want your garlic to burn. Add your cream, I go with about 1 and 1/2 cups for us, it leaves us with leftovers if we don't' go back for seconds. Let the cream thicken a little (never take your heat above medium heat for any of this), just until it coats the back of a spoon. Once thickened add your cheese. If it is still too thin for you add more cheese, if to thick add a splash more cream. Don't forget plenty of salt and black pepper.
One key thing to Alfredo is real heavy cream and good quality cheese.
Linked to Kim at Forever Wherever.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Monday (later on today, I really need to go to bed earlier) I'll have my Alfredo recipe up. For Wordless Wednesday and Works for Me Wednesday I'll have a little bit of what we did this week up.
I hope your week starts off as a magical one!!
Monday, March 23, 2009
Mashed Potato Topping:
6 medium potatoes
½ a stick of butter
Enough milk or cream to get the consistency you like
1 teaspoon ground sage
salt and pepper to taste
Diced all potatoes and add to a large pot. Cover with water and bring to a boil, cook until fork tender. Drain and add the rest of the ingredients till you receive the texture you like.
1 lb. of ground beef, I like to use lean for this recipe
1 med. onion, diced
2 small or 1 large carrot, very finely diced
2 stalks celery, very finely diced
1 cup frozen green peas
1 cup frozen baby lima beans
1 cup frozen corn, you can use fresh if you prefer
2½ cups beef stock, cut back if you like less gravy
½ cup milk, or cream
½ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon ground sage
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1. Brown ground beef, I like to cook my onion, carrots and celery at the same time. That is why I like lean beef for this.
2. Add frozen veggies, cook 5 min. until the color comes back and veggies start to get a little brown, especially corn.
3. Add all seasonings, stir to combine.
4. Add beef stock holding out 2 tablespoons in a small bowl. Add milk and bring to a boil.
5. Add cornstarch to beef stock and mix well. Add to veggie and beef mixture.
6. Place in casserole dish, I use one that is 2 quarts and has high sides.
7. Cover with layer of mashed potatoes and place in 350° oven.
8. Cook until filling is bubbling and potatoes start to form a slight crust on top, about 20 to 30 min. in my oven.
The sage in the potatoes were actually an accident that tasted great! This is a great way to eat veggies because the gravy is so good even I gobble them up without a second thought.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
My lovely husband surprised us by taking off of work Saturday so we could have a family fun day. At work he is under a big deadline so I was rather shocked. He is just the best husband!
I'm going to change up my format, instead of doing Monday-Sunday I'll start on Sunday. That is usually when we do our shopping.
Sunday: Shepard's Pie
Monday: Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
Tuesday: Angel Hair Alfredo (recipe to come later, it is super simple)
Wednesday: Sloppy Joe's
Thursday: Breakfast for dinner: Pancakes or Omlettes to be decided later
Friday: Date Night!
Saturday: TBA, not sure if that is the day we will go out of town or not.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Swagbucks! You've probably heard all about it by now. I wanted to set up my account and get a reward before actually blogging about it. Swagbucks is simply a service for you to do your internet searching through, similar to google or yahoo. You simply go to their site to enter what you are searching for or you can download a toolbar that makes it quick and easy! The difference is you can collect the Swagbucks and redeem them for prizes and gift cards. The major one for me is the Amazon gift cards, with that you can get just about anything.
The extra cool part is if your friends sign up for a Swagbucks account through your referral link you win the same amount of Swagbucks they do up to 100! You can't beat that and it's all for doing a regular search that you would have done anyways.
Come join me at Swagbuckss and let's redeem prizes and gift cards together!Anywhere you see the word Swagbucks is my referral link, click on it to set up your account.
Check out We Are That Family for more great Works for me Wednesday tips!
Sunday, March 15, 2009
My new recipe last week was Zucchini Risotto. It wasn't what we had hoped for, good but not great. Surprisingly, the zucchini was the part we didn't like in it, so I might leave that out next time.
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
Hamburgers with Home Fries (on the grill, we are supposed to have nice weather)
Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
Date Night and pick up Becca, she starts Spring Break!
Shepard's Pie (recipe to be posted later)
Tomato and Noodle Soup w/ Grilled Cheese
That should round out the week quite nicely. Next week who know what will happen with Becca here, she always has a say in our menu plan.
For more great menu options head over to $5 Dinners, she is hosting Menu Plan Monday for Laura over at OrgJunkie.com this week.
We had a nice lunch out and went over to shop. He wanted stuff for the house, I wanted to do the shed. It's rather large and I know it could hold everything we need to get out of the house. We picked up a shelving system and bins to fit it perfectly. Two little plastic garage cabinets, peg boards, and all kinds of specialty hooks. Even though we got home at 4:00pm and he still had to change the oil in my vehicle he agreed to help empty the shed. I put together all the pieces and put them into place we did a rough sort. Everything that was in an open box, wet box(we found a leak at the door), or just tossed about we went through. We ended up throwing away about 2/3 of those items. We both made a commitment, and I hope writing it here helps to keep it, that we will finish it! It already looks so much better so it can only get better from here.
We found several items for a yard sale, hopefully we can earn the money back that we spent organizing. If we can it will be a free shed redo, can't beat that! After it's done I'll post photos of the before and after. I will also give a run down on everything we spent.
All in all, it was a great day!
Friday, March 13, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Ahhh... Cheese! How I love it so! One thing I have never liked is how fast it seems to go south. I have learned is it can actually be cheaper buying the more expensive ingredients. One of them being Parmesan cheese. It tastes so much better and it lasts for months for me!
I take my block of cheese and wrap it in a paper towel, making sure that no cheese can touch the plastic bag. Put it in a ziplock (or off-brand, that's what I do) and park it in the fridge. It will last a long time. Every so often change out the paper towel, if it ever starts to feel damp you don't want that sitting around your cheese. That's it! So simple to do and I kid you not that we have had a nice chunk of Parmesan last over 3 months! We don't how long it could have lasted because we ate it.
We do cheddar and all our other cheese the same. Another tip I have is use block cheese and grate it yourself. They put stuff (I'm not sure what) around cheese to make sure it doesn't clump together. It tastes a lot better and it doesn't take long to grate a little bit of cheese. I've found that it melts a lot better too.
Fore more great works for me Wednesday tips visit We Are THAT Family.
This makes enough for an 8x8 pan but it is very filling, with sides that could feed 6. If you want it is super easy to double and put in a 9x13.
Stuffed Mexican Cornbread
Heat oven to 425.
1 pkg. of Jiffy Cornbread, Mexican Cornbread, or your own homemade (I've used this recipe)
1 can Mexicorn (optional but really makes it taste great)
1/2 cup cheddar cheese grated (have another 1/2 cup grated and waiting)
1 teaspoon chile powder
1 teaspoon cumin
Mix cornbread according to package directions and add the rest of the ingredients. Mix to combine and have waiting.
1 pound ground beef (or my healthy ground beef mix)
1 pkg. of Taco Seasoning (or use how much you would use homemade for one pound of meat, I like this recipe)
Brown ground beef and drain. Add Taco Seasoning and 1/4 cup water, cook until water evaporates. Turn off heat we are about to assemble!
Spray 8x8 pan with cooking spray. Put half of cornbread mixture in pan, layer all of ground beef on top. Place 1/2 cup cheese on ground beef and top with remaining cornbread mixture. Cook until knife inserted in center comes out clean, that is around 25-35 minutes in my oven.
I like to garnish mine with sour cream and taco sauce. Enjoy!
I realize I'm not very good at writing out recipes (many of these I don't have an actual recipe for, I have to make it to remember what I put in it) if you know of any site that gives instructions on how to write a good recipe let me know!
This post is linked with Tasty Tuesday, and Kitchen Tip Tuesday.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Last week with everyone still sick we got off track again. This week we are back and ready to go!
Now I have to get back on track with trying new meals. This coming the same week that Jason has requested three of his favorites. I think he will get two and the other will go into next week. I will have the recipes up that aren't currently linked later in the week, so check back!
Spicy Chicken and Rice
Stuffed Mexican Cornbread (I'm trying a new variation, recipe to follow later)
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
Tex-Mex Egg Rolls
Chicken Pot Pie
Only one meatless day but I'm tired of having the same options. If you have a great meatless meal please link it for me!
For countless meal option visit Orgjunkie.com!
Saturday, March 7, 2009
This week we fell flat again on eating. I'm used to going grocery shopping together and that didn't happen, I felt bad at the beginning of the week he felt bad later. We ended up eating several meals at home but I think we had take out twice. Oh well, hopefully next week will go better.
Now to think about next weeks menu. If you have a great recipe (especially freezer friendly) I would love to read about it. If you are a follower please leave a link to any and all you have tried and loved. I have to get back into trying new recipes. Although I should have one coming up soon!
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Let's face it scrapbooking supplies are expensive. The main cost for me is letter stickers. I love American Crafts Thickers. And using them I've found a way to stretch my scrapping buck. I buy only the white. Then using a marker I color them to whatever color I need!
Here is a layout featuring "white" thickers for the word grown. I colored them with an American Crafts Slick Writer and then covered in diamond stickles.
I have another that I colored the same letters black but that layout isn't quite done yet.
Stickles are a product that come in several colors. To save money you can buy only the Diamond or Crystal colors. They are clear and allow whatever color you have under it to shine through.
For more great tips stop by We Are THAT family.
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Cheese and Chicken Enchiladas
1 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken breasts (about 1/2 lb)
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, divided (4 oz)
1 cup picante sauce (I use Pace)
3 ounces cream cheese, diced
1 teaspoon cumin
2 cans enchilada sauce
10-12 corn tortillas
Coat a large skillet with cooking spray and saute onions until soft. Meanwhile, mix chicken, 1/2 c. cheddar, picante sauce and cream cheese. Add to onions and cook over low heat until cheese begins to melt. Zap tortillas in the microwave covered with a damp paper towel about 15 seconds, it makes them easier to roll. Spoon about 1/3 cup filling on each tortilla and roll up.
Place enchiladas (seam side down) in a 9x13 (or 2 8x8's for a small family) baking dish make sure the bottom is just covered with Enchilada Sauce. Pour the rest of the sauce on top one all your enchiladas are in place and cover with remaining cheese. *Note:I flash freeze them and bag at this point in family size portions. If you are going ahead and eating now cover and bake at 350F 15 minutes. If you are pulling from the freezer, thaw in the refrigerator then bake.
Be sure to check out Kim's blog Forever...Wherever for more Tasty Tuesday recipes.
This week will still be pretty simple. I found ground beef on sale so more of that will be made into freezer meals and of course one night of sloppy joe's, Jason can't let a week go by without those hardly. I deprived him last week since he doesn't feel good I'll give in this week. You would think he's a child, lol!
Tomato Sauce and Noodles
Grilled Cheese Sandwich.
Spicy Baked Chicken
Meatballs in gravy w/ Noodles
Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
For more great menu options go to Org Junkie and check out all the great posts!
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
I'm allergic to traditional fabric softener. For some reason manufacturers seem to even put irritants into the hypo allergenic varieties as well. I had heard about using vinegar for fabric softener but thought that had to be some kind of joke. My towels kept getting scratchy so on one desperate day I gave vinegar a try. It worked! Everything smelled better as well, which is odd considering you I used vinegar. I'm not questioning it though, as long as it works it's fine with me!
Keep your drains clear. Put 1/4 of a cup of baking soda in your drain (this works great for kitchens or baths) follow that with 1 cup of vinegar. Let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes then rinse with hot tap water. I do this every other week and my drains work great! When we first bought the house they were a little on the slow side, I promise this works.
Control the shower sprayer. I hate when I turn it on and some nozzles drip while others spray off to the side. I like to unscrew the shower head and put it in a plastic bag filled with vinegar. Leave it overnight for the best results and in the morning you will have a shower head that is like new. If you can't take yours off secure the plastic bag over the shower head with rubber bands and leave it that way. Just make sure you take off the bag before your husband gets in the shower. If you like practical jokes leave it, it is quite funny to see his reaction. I promise I didn't do it on purpose! I laughed for days over that, is that wrong? LOL
Try one or all of these tips and see if they work for you! And if you know something else let me know in the comments!
Make sure you check out We Are THAT Family for more great tips and tricks.
For 175 uses for vinegar check out this Readers Digest article. It is amazing all the things it can do!
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Last week didn't go as well as the one before. I am sick, and not just I might have a cold sick, REALLY sick. I will have to get to the doctor if I don't start feeling better soon. It is getting to where I can't even sit at my computer. I will say that we only veered off course once this past week!
Our usually Friday night was out but I had Jason pick up something on his way home Saturday as well. I just didn't feel up to cooking. That isn't bad considering I haven't been able to do hardly anything the past few days.
Even better than that we actually *gasp* ate things on the day I had assigned them. That is a major first for me! I tried to vary the type of meat and meatless days to not have them back to back much, it worked.
Everything last week except Monday was tried and true. Monday's new adventure was a disaster! Jason ate it but I could only eat a few bites. I had high hopes for it but oh well. I'm still on the lookout for more great zuchinni ideas, I'll find a great recipe yet!
Monday: Lasagna (Bertolli Meal)
Sides: Garlic Bread and Salad
Wednesday: Soft Taco Bake
Sides: none, I do a mixture for the top
Thursday: Chicken w/Basil Cream Sauce and pasta
Sides: Salad, Garlic Bread
Friday: Date Night!
Saturday: BBQ Nachos
Sunday:TBA If I'm feeling better it will be a new recipe
This week I'm relying heavily on convenience foods. I feel bad about that but I'm just not feeling well. If I start to feel better I will make a couple of new recipes.
Be sure to check out Org Junkie for more great menu plans!
Saturday, February 21, 2009
1 (sm. to med.) onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced (or use a press)
1 can chicken broth (or veggie)
1 can water (I fill up the broth can)
1 can red beans, rinsed and drained
1 can navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/3 pound ditalini pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese for garnish
Saute onions and garlic in olive oil about 2 minutes. Add all ingredients expect pasta, bring to a boil. Let it boil for about a minute and add pasta. Reduce heat and simmer about 20 minutes until pasta is cooked. Ladle and put fresh grated parmesan cheese on top.
This soup is so thick and rich it's just wonderful!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
You might not have to drive that far but you could be surprised. Check some of the smaller towns around you and call to see what the rates are like. You might be pleasantly surprised.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
OAMC or Once a Month Cooking can be a real chore when there aren't many people to feed. You might only have two adults and a couple of small children that don't have big appetites. That is where my very favorite OAMC tool comes into play.
A loaf pan! First a normal recipe can be split three times! That itself is a great savings. But there aren't leftovers that will turn into science projects in the fridge. Plus your portion control is automatically built in. How many times have you made a big pan of lasagna so you would have some leftovers, and someone went back more times that they should? It's a common occurrence in this house.
Right now I'm using the smallest loaf pans I could find which happen to be the disposable kind. I know it isn't the greenest option but you can reuse them! When my family grows or the summer hits and Becca is here, I'll go to a normal loaf pan which is bigger. That might be the better option for you to start out with.
This works for me! For more great tips visit Rocks in My Dryer!
Monday, February 16, 2009
1 lb Ground Beef
2 stalks Celery, grated
1 (med.) Carrot
1 (med.) Bell Pepper, diced or grated your choice
1 small Onion, diced
1 (8 ounce) can Tomato Sauce
1/4 cup Ketchup
1/4 cup BBQ Sauce (your favorite, we use Cattleman's)
1 tablespoon firmly packed Brown Sugar
1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon Worchestershire Sauce
1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
If Joes appear too'loose', leave cover off and let moisture evaporate.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Last week was successful! We only ate out on Friday night, which is a tradition. Looks like this menu planning really works.
I'm going to start using a regular format this week.
On the menu for this week:
Cavatappi with Zuchinni in Asiago sauce
Sides: not sure yet
Sides: Salad and Garlic Bread
Sides: Salsa and Cheese dip
Tomato Sauce and Noodles
Sides: Grilled Cheese
Tex Mex Egg Rolls
Sloppy Joe's (I'll post the recipe for this tomorrow so be watching, they are delicious!)
Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
I think that format will work better for us. If there is another item you would like the recipe for just ask. I'll eventually get around to adding all of them hopefully!
For more great options check out the Menu Plan Monday posts at Orgjunkie!
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Out of 5 pounds of ground beef I made:
2 Sloppy Joe
1 Taco Meat
3 Tex-Mex Egg Rolls (servings not rolls, haha)
1 Spaghetti Sauce
I could have made more Egg Rolls because I have left over filling. Be sure to check out my Healthy Ground Beef Mix to see how to make your beef stretch.
Out of 2.5 pounds of Chicken:
1 Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup (enough for us for 2 meals and lunch for Jason)
2 Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
And I still have more Chicken left, it will go towards quesadillas.
During next weeks Works for Me Wednesday over at Rocks in my Dryer, I'll share about freezer meals for smaller families.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I'm not the best writer, I'm more of an in person story teller. I apologize in advance.
It started the day I broke up with a boyfriend, we weren't very serious so it was a big deal. It still hurts though. I worked at Wal-Mart as a cashier and my cousin came through my line buying some things (to make cheese dip) for a get together. He asked if I was getting off soon and told me I should stop by. I wasn't really feeling up to it but I figure having a little fun would be great right about then.
I got off about half an hour later and headed over to his house. As I was walking in the door I passed by this tall boy with bright blue eyes. He was dreamy, but I had just gotten out of a relationship and wasn't looking for anyone. I went inside and said hello to everyone. An old friend that I hadn't seen since I was 12 or 13 was there. We were catching up and in walked Mr. Dreamy. I honestly think I checked out a bit looking at him. Debbie looked at me and said "Oh, have you met my brother?" She introduced me to Jason and we couldn't take our eyes off of each other. I couldn't believe I never knew she had a brother, let alone that he was Mr. Dreamy.
The night went on and it came up that Jason had something happen and couldn't get to the store to get the cheese dip. Hmmm... you mean this wasn't supposed to happen. Could it have been fate? As the night went on everyone ate and Chris and Jason decided to take a ride around town. They asked me to go and I hopped in right beside Mr. Dreamy. He took a few turns harder than he should have and I kept leaning over into him. Thank goodness for a truck with a bench seat.
Then it happened, he said a cuss word. My arm went up and I smacked him (not hard at all!) right across his cheek. I couldn't believe it I had just hit Mr. Dreamy!!! What did I do? I apologized and said that kind of language was unacceptable to me. It turns out he likes a woman that stands up for what she believes in! He never said another cuss word pass that day.
We lived happily ever after... and he admitted to taking those turns too hard on purpose.
The funny thing is we found out later that we knew many of the same people yet somehow never met. He was my cousins best friend, how in the world we never met till that night we will never know. We believe it was meant to be.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
My topic is something I have struggled with, veggies. I just plain don't like the taste of most vegetables. You see, I'm the picky eater. I'm not alone though Jason is just as bad. Becca is the one that will eat, or at least try, almost anything. I figured something had to give I had to find ways to sneak vegetables into my diet. So I came up with my healthy ground beef mix.
First, let's discuss ground beef. Let's face it on it's own it just doesn't taste very good, that's why we add seasoning and sauces. You never see anyone eat ground beef on it's own, but why? After all isn't that what a hamburger is. What about steak? Ground beef can left over steaks ground into it but it still doesn't taste as good. That's because it gets those nice brown bits on it! Every chef will tell you that is where the flavor comes from. Next time you brown your ground beef don't just cook till no longer pink, actually brown it. You will amazed at home much better it tastes!
Ground Beef Mix:
1 lb. Ground Beef
1 (med.) Onion, diced
1 (med.) Carrot, grated (make sure to read to the end to see my grater, it's key)
1 to 2 Stalks of Celery, grated
1/2 to 1 whole Bell Pepper, grated
1 clove Garlic, minced
1/4 cup Quick Cooking Oats, lightly ground (after I measure I crumble with my hand)
Salt and Pepper
Cook ground beef till no longer pink. Add the rest of the ingredients and brown.
Those are 3 of my most hated vegetables but when I grate them up and cook them you can't notice any flavors standing out. And, the carrots add a great sweetness to the mixture. It really helps to stretch your ground beef as well. It is so much more healthy for you as well. I made my mix with 5 pounds of ground beef today and it didn't take any extra time.
One key for me is the grater I use as well. If you use a regular box grater you will notice the vegetables in it and that isn't what it is about to me. This is the grater I use. It makes it small enough to incorporate the vegetables in for nutrition, but no offending tastes stand out. I use that grater on an almost daily basis, I just love it! If you can't get that grater make sure to use a small hole on your box grater.
I'm going to start experimenting with adding lentils, brown rice, and zucchini as well. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes as I go along!
For more great tips be sure to check out Rocks in My Dryer.
I just wanted to clarify in case anyone think that a recipe sounds almost exactly like another. It was probably born from that but adjusted to my families tastes.
This is a great recipe! I'm not a huge fan of some of the ingredients but the first time I tasted the filling I had nothing but love for it. The number of egg rolls you get out of this will vary. I get 16-20.
- 1 (15oz) package of Yellow Rice
- 1 lb. Ground Beef or Ground Beef Mix
- 1 (15oz.) can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (14.5 oz) can Mexican Style Stewed Tomatoes (drain some liquid off)
- 1 cup Shredded Montery Jack Cheese
- 6 Green Onion, finely chopped
- 1 pkg. Taco Seasoning (or make your own)
- 1 pkg. Egg Roll wrappers (no size given because I've seen it vary by brand)
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- Oil for frying (you can deep fry, I shallow fried my last batch)
- Cook rice according to package directions, fluff with fork, set aside and let it cool.
- Brown your ground beef (or my ground beef mix, I'll give more info on Works for me Wednesday). Add taco seasoning according to directions, add stewed tomatoes. I like to break up my tomatoes a little more and take out the core pieces.
- Add ground beef mixture, beans, green onion, and cheese to rice. Be sure to distribute it evenly, the rice likes to clump.
- Use 1/4 to 1/3 cup mixture in center of each egg roll wrapper. I prefer 1/4, these are very filling!. I turn the egg roll wrapper like a diamond shape, I want one of the points facing me. I put my mixture in and fold over the center trying to tuck the meat into a more compact "log." Then I fold the right and left sides in, brush a little egg wash in the last point and roll up. The egg acts as your glue. It seems hard but after the first few you get into a rhythm and it goes quickly. There is a diagram on the egg roll wrapper that is very helpful.
- At this point you can freeze for later or fry them up, heating your oil to 350 degrees. I'm going to experiment with baking them as well. If you freeze them let them thaw in the refrigerator before frying.
I hope I didn't leave anything out it is 4 am here and I haven't been to sleep yet. Speaking of sleep if anyone knows ways to make your body understand when it is time to sleep let me know!
Monday, February 9, 2009
1 to 2 cups of Cooked Chicken (shredded or diced, your preference)
1 cup diced Onion
1 cup diced Celery
1 cup diced Carrots
2 cans Chicken Broth
2 cans Water (I use the chicken broth can)
2 cans Cream of ____ Soup (blank because you can use what you like)
2 tablespoons of your favorite Herbs
2 cups of Egg Noodles
Salt and Pepper to taste
Put everything in your crockpot on high 3-4 hours, or on low 8 -9 hours.
If you like your soup thinner, cook the noodles before placing them in the crockpot. I like mine thicker so I'm going to put the noodles in and let them cook in the soup, I put them in the last half hour and put it on high if it was on low before. The herbs I'm using are Parley, Basil, Oregano, and Sage. Just a pinch of the Basil, Oregano, and Sage. Use dried herbs because they will rehydrate in the soup. I used Cream of Chicken and Cream of Onion soup.
Hopefully it will turn out well.
Keep watching for my Tex-Mex Egg Roll Recipe!
Up date: The recipe was good. I thought it still needed something so I'm going to work on the herb mixture. Jason on the other hand loved it, he had 3 bowls! And he is excited about taking some of the left overs to work.
Head on over to Blissfully Domestic for more great recipes and tips!
I use center cut bacon to cut down on fat and calories. The toast was double fiber whole wheat, with a touch of butter and honey on top. The orange juice was just for Jason, I had a Diet Coke. I know that is bad but it was left over from yesterday.
A nice big salad with a bunch of different greens, cheddar cheese, bacon bits, croutons and ranch dressing.
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
The Chicken Noodle Soup is a new recipe. We have been trying to find a recipe similar to Denny's chicken noodle soup, so far even using copycat recipes we haven't found it. I'll post the recipe later. And yes Sweet Tea, I am a southern girl. What else would you expect?
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Here is the way I menu plan. You will notice that there are more meals than days, that's because I'm big on cravings. If I'm not feeling up to something then I can always substitute.
My Chicken options for the week:
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken Pot Pie
My Beef options for the week:
Stuffed Mexican Cornbread
I have some vegetarian options as well, but this is a good start. I'll update next week with what we ate on what day before my next Menu Plan Monday post. I'll post some recipes as well. I love to cook so I'm always trying new things and if you have a great recipe for anything, let me know about it!!
Head on over to Org Junkie for more Menu Plan Monday posts and join in on the fun!
Saturday, February 7, 2009
So, here we are at Hectic Calm! I know it's an oxymoron, but that is my life. You would think that being a SAHW(stay at home wife) would be a simple life, right? WRONG... It can filled with just as much chaos as any other. Sit back and enjoy the ride.