Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Weekly Menu (Sept 1 - Sept 7)

I forgot to plan ahead for last week. And I didn't have time to grocery shop. So we ate at my parents, grandparents, made spaghetti, and ate out.  Tonight I am going grocery shopping. Thank you pay-day!

Thursday - Slow Cooker Pork Chops (I know this recipe link calls for chicken, but we are having chicken in 2 other meals, so I am using pork chops instead!), Pasta, and Carrots

Friday - Easy Lemon Chicken, Cheesy Broccoli (thank you Amanda!), and Rolls

Saturday - Hawaiian Chicken Sliders, Baked Beans, and Corn on the Cob

Sunday - Cookout over at my friends house for her birthday!

Monday - Chili Dogs and Tater Tots (a very healthy, low-fat meal, haha!)

Tuesday - Pot Roast (the Lipton Onion Soup Mix way) with Biscuits

Wednesday - Mexican Casserole and Rice

***I could not for the life of me open this link***
Melt 1 cube butter in fry pan
Layer on 4 chicken breasts or chicken tenders
Sprinkle with 1 pkg. Italian Seasonings Salad Dressing Mix
Add juice of 2 lemons.

Cook until tender. Put the lid on at first, then take off at the end in order to brown and absorb seasonings.

*Can be done in crockpot, cook on high 4-5 hrs or low 6-8 hrs. When finished cooking, take out and shred chicken, and ladle on the juices.*

1.5 lbs ground beef
(1 t sald, dash of pepper)
3 cup crushed tortilla chips
16 oz salsa
15.5 oz can chili beans, drained
12 oz sour cream or 1 1/2 cup
10 oz can diced tomatoes
4 oz can sliced black olives, drained
8 oz shredded fiesta blend cheese

Brown ground beef in a skillet, adding salt and pepper, drain. Spread chips in bottom of 9x13 dish. Combine cooked ground beef, salsa, and drained chili beans. Spread over chips. Spread sour cream over meat mixture. Sprinkle tomatoes, black olives, then cheese. Bake uncovered @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

I hope this menu helps you out! Let me know if you make anything. Next Wednesday I will be posting some Crockpot meals that I have tried recently on Kelly's Korner . You should do it too!

Hope t

Thursday, August 18, 2011

What would I do with a kid-free weekend?

I asked for questions and here is a really good one from Torres Tidbits...

If given a choice of what to do for a weekend free of children, what would it be?

Let me back-track a little bit to answer this question.  I was still in school when I had Em and was never away from her for more than a day. Thanks to my mom and grandparents, I was able to go on my senior trip to Cancun when she was 13 months old. That was the hardest week ever being away from my little girl that long. I talked to her every single day even though she could have probably cared less.  Then Z came along and I may have been gone a night or two here and there to go visit my friends in Stillwater (they were in college, you know the ones who didn't get knocked up at the age of 12, haha) but that was the longest amount of time I was away from him.  A few years ago he had to go to California for a week and that was the longest I had ever been away from him until recently when my dad kidnapped him for 22 days so he could be a junior trucker. I am glad my dad and Z got to spend that time together though. Yes, my kids did stay the night here and there ever so often but it was usually just a day or 2 at the most. My baby who is 18 months old has NEVER stayed away from me. Like seriously ever. I have not been away from him for more than like 10-12 hours. I'm pretty sure that I have separation anxiety from him. Which is probably unhealthy...but oh well he is my last baby and I just haven't been ready to let him sleepover with his grandparents yet. I think I am getting there though...maybe.

Anyways, once I can put on my big girl panties and leave my kids for a whole weekend, I would like to go somewhere relaxing, like a bed and breakfast, or the beach (ok a lake would work also). Somewhere that I can be lazy and relax. Not have to cook or do dishes or laundry or clean or take care of anyone besides myself. A place that had cute little fun shops and restaurants. I think Alan and I could really use a weekend together.

I love my little people but being a parent to 2 very busy children and a baby toddler is so exhausting.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I want to capture the beauty of everyday life...

Do you like taking pictures? Would you like to learn how to do it better? In the comfort of your own home!! Ashley Ann from Under the Sycamore has an online class called SnapShop and The Driveway of Life is giving away a spot for the September class. I really want it!!

I want to learn to take better quality pictures of my kids. Pictures that tell a story. I want the memories to last me (and one day, them) a lifetime!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Photo Challenge - Carry

Linking up for a photo challenge. This weeks word is CARRY.

Colton found some locust shells and carried them around for quite some time. The top photo shows his "yucky" face.

Weekly Menu (August 15-19)

We have been so busy with football and cheer so I have kinda forgotten to post my menu. But I promise you that we have been eating!!  We have football Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Games start this Saturday. So yes that is 5 days a week!  Right now we only have cheer on Monday nights but that will change to 2 nights a week plus games on Saturdays next week. I will be doing lots of crockpot meals, casseroles, and easy dishes.  Here is the menu:

Monday - Salisbury Steak Hamburger Helper, Green Beans, Biscuits

Tuesday - Crockpot Pineapple Chicken, Fried Brown Rice (I add a little soy sauce and a fried egg), Broccoli

Wednesday - Sweet Pork on King Hawaiian Rolls, Baked Beans, Fried Potatoes

Thursday - Chips & Salsa Chicken, Pinto beans, and Mexican rice

Friday - 3 Meat Pizza Casserole, Salad (with a really yummy, but secretive, dressing)

Saturday - we will be eating all the leftovers or sandwiches...I think I will make myself a quesadilla using the sweet pork!

Hope everyone has a great week!

P.S. I have found most of these meals thru Pinterest.  I am so addicted!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

I found a recipe for these cupcakes online and I have GOT to get better at writing down the links because when I tried to google: Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes using lemon cake mix and strawberry jello, the recipe I printed out is nowhere to be found.
Anyways, I made these for my "work mom's" birthday. And they were a hit. Well at least that's what people told me to my face!

This photo was not taken by me.

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 Box of lemon cake mix
3oz box of strawberry jello
1 1/2 cup diced strawberries
1C oil
1/2C milk
4 eggs

Cupcake Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 325.
2. In large bowl, stir cake mix and strawberry jello mix together.
3. Make a well in the center of mix and pour in strawberries, oil, milk and eggs. Mix well.4. Pour batter into cupcake pans. *(I used foil liners)*
5. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Frosting Ingredients:
1. 1 stick of butter, softened
2. 12oz package of cream cheese, softened
3. 1TBS vanilla extract
4. 2 cups confectioners sugar
5. Zest from 2 lemons *(I only used one lemon)*
6. Juice from 1 lemon

Frosting Directions:
1. Cream together butter and cream cheese.
2. Add vanilla, mix.
3. Slowly add in confectioners sugar.
4. Add zest and juice, mix well.

*I frosted mine after they had cooled for about 30 minutes. I put my frosting into a Ziploc bag and cut a tip off the corner. I also put my frosting in the freezer for about 20-30 minutes. Next time I make these I will frost them the day of serving. And just keep the frosting chilled in the fridge.*

I think they would be really cute if you put a slice of strawberry on top and maybe those little lemon candies. I may or may not have eaten 2 of them :-)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

a rainbow cake? sure, why not!

I only have one sister. Thank God, because she is more than enough. Ha! She only has one child. My niece, McKenna. I love her so much. Her birthday is June 25th. This year she was just having a small birthday/sleepover with her friends. The first birthday I wouldn't be invited too :-(  So I called Kenna on the phone and said "well since you don't want to invite me to your party, would you like me to make you a cake and I can give you your present at my house?" and she said "yes!". 

Here is how the rest of the story went down:

Me - What kind of cake do you want?
K - Um, can you make me a rainbow cake? My aunt ____ was supposed to make me one last year but she didn't.
Me- What? A rainbow cake? How am I supposed to do that?
K - I don't know. But I really want one.
Me - Ok since I'm your favorite aunt ever, I guess I will try.

So I google'd rainbow cakes and every single recipe was way too much work for me. I used my imagination and a food coloring guide for how to make the colors of the rainbow. I picked up a box of regular white (or maybe yellow) cake mix, food coloring, and white frosting from Walmart. I got home and began working on it...

After I took it out of the oven and tried to flop it over to my cake plate thingamajig, it started to fall apart :-( I even sprayed the crap out of it with Pam.  So anyways...I used my imagination again and just chopped some of the cake off and shaped it into guessed it, a rainbow!!

I may not be Betty Crocker, or Martha Stewart, but what mattered the most to me is that I tried. And McKenna absolutely loved it. She was so happy that I had made her a rainbow cake!

She really wanted her 2 front teeth
for her
We got her a tote, bathing suit,
sunglasses, bracelets and nail polish!

I really do love my niece so much. I have always treated her like she is one of mine and I try to include her as much as possible. I am her favorite Aunt Ally.