Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all of you wonderful readers!!!! I cannot tell you how much I adore and appreciate every one of you!! You lift me up when I'm feeling down and laugh with me when I'm in my craziest times. I hope the new year brings abundant blessings and joy in your lives. Keep having fun and don't forget to enjoy all the little things each day, use the good china, make your grandmas favorite family recipe and tell your family how much you love them!!!

Peace, Love and Yummies!!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Crockpot cooking and a new kitchen wreath

Hey there!!! I have good news and bad news. Good news I have a new crockpot recipe to share... Bad news, no pictures!! Yep I completely forgot to take pics but I'm gonna give you the recipe and tell you it's yummy and it's easy so make it and enjoy!! You won't mess it up at all!!! The craziness of the holidays is really setting in about now so don't give up and get drive thru. Make something in the crockpot because even with all the cheese it's still better for you than the greasy stuff and your family will think you are amazing!!!

Cheesy Italian Tortellini
1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 lb Italian sausage
15 oz jar of marinara sauce (just what's in your pantry or your favorite)
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes w/ Italian seasonings
9 oz package refrigerated cheese tortellini (usually found in the deli/produce area of grocery)
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese ( personally I use the whole 2 cups in the bag)

Brown your ground beef and sausage in skillet and drain if necessary.
Spray your crockpot with nonstick spray.
Mix meats, sauce and tomatoes in crockpot then cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours.
About 20 minutes before ready to serve stir in the cheese and the tortellini and let cook for 15 minutes. Then serve with a nice green salad and maybe some crusty bread.

I didn't even have leftovers to get a picture of, so I promise you will love this one!

On a craft note, I finally made use of my growing collection of wine corks! I saw one of these on television and finally got off my booty and did something with all those corks I've been saving for years!!

This is how we stared out

And I glued and glued and burned my fingers and cussed and glued some more and this is what happened!

The bow is Christmas ribbon so after the holidays I'll change it out to match the kitchen and leave it out. There's no law about having wreaths out all year! Or is there?????

Here it is in the sunshine this morning

HOPEFULLY soon I'll be bringing successful photos of the making of divinity!!! We made a batch the other night and as our grandparents would have said "it's no count". It tasted really good but the texture just wasn't right. We know where we made our mistakes and we will correct them and try again. I even have two variations I plan on making if that tells you how confident we are about making it again. Now if the humidity will just keep cooperating!!!

One last side hubby neglected to inform me that he would need a dish for work today so if you work with him please note that I am Not responsible for whatever he brought in. Just

Peace, Love and Yummies!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Monday, December 20, 2010

4 nights of FAST fix dinners

Hey Peeps....Happy Monday!!!

Well, I've been in a quandary about posting the dinners from last week because I really didn't "cook". But I thought, heck...everyone gets to that point where life is busy and crazy and unpredictable, especially around the holidays.  So I'm giving you our dinners from last week.  We will just call them "almost home cooked" meals.  You can feed your family at home cheaper than eating out even if you get some help from the Cost of Co and the local Wally World. 

Dinner Uno
BBQ pork sandwiches and tater tots

First up, lets get those tots in the oven.  Yep folks let's bake not deep fry.  They are just as good!!!
Now we need to pull out our prepackaged pork from the Cost of Co.  It is really yummy too!  Just heat that up following package directions and then TA DA!!!!
Just plop that pork on a nice bun with some BBQ sauce and a few tots and it's dinner at home in a flash.

Don't stop's dinner #2.  Taco Night!

First of all I need to get my ground beef going.  I add some onion and a can of green chili's to my meat and get it all browned up and crumbly.
See how nice that meat looks in just a few minutes.
Now grab that taco seasoning from the box or the big jug like I have and add it to some beef broth.  You can certainly use water as the package states but if you have the broth, go ahead give it a try.  I promise it gives it a deeper flavor than using just the water.

Just heat up a can of that good ole' Mexicorn and another can of refried beans.  I like the refried black beans, less fat just as tasty!
Now get out those taco toppings and make yourself a nice dinner!
I like to put my refried beans on the tortilla but hey, it's taco night so be creative and have fun!!

Moving along to Dinner #3, it's Tomato Basil Soup w/ Butternut Squash ravioli and rolls

If you want to make these rolls you do have to put a thought into it early in the day because they are frozen rolls.  I just grabbed a few out of the bag and plopped in my big iron skillet and covered with a towel and let them hang out all day so they could rise. If you forget, just grab some rolls on the way home or a nice loaf of crusty french bread.   Better buy two loaves in case you gobble the hot bread on the way home..oh wait, maybe that's just me!   Saving the day once again is the Cost of Co!! Yep, the soup and the ravioli are both from there. But you can use whatever variety of tomato basil soup you can snatch up at the store. Just heat up the soup and cook the ravioli per package directions.  I drained the ravioli then mixed in with the soup and served with those warm from the oven rolls!!  Seriously, does drive thru ever taste this good??!!!

Dinner #4 is a crock pot meal.  This is the second time I've made this dish and I have to say, we are growing quite fond of it and it's so simple to make.  Nothing like coming home to a fabulous smelling house and dinner almost finished.    I present to you Slow Cooker Red Beans & Rice. 

List of ingredients:
1 lb dried red beans
package of sausage links, sliced (no breakfast sausage please)
3 ribs of celery, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbsp creole seasoning
7 cups of chicken broth
The poor Tony Chachere's, I forgot it with the other ingredients.

Now let's get all of that into the crock pot then add those 7 cups of broth or water or a combination of both.

Once again I just believe the chicken broth adds a richer flavor over the water. Now because the hubster is from the good state of Louisiana... I slapped in a few shots of Tabasco sauce and my Creole seasonings were FULL tablespoons and the sausage was hot. We like it spicy at our house!
Pop that crock pot on low for about 7 hours and just before you are ready to eat boil up some white rice.Yes.....a little white rice every now and then won't kill you!!  Besides, the brown rice makes it taste a little odd. 
I have a little confession to make.....I just took that picture a few minutes ago and that whole bowl of stuff was stone cold!!!  :0)  Seems I forgot to get a picture when we were eating it!  It's all good in da hood!!!

Now, for an extra easy peasy treat I give you COOOKIES!!!!

Grab yourself a roll of peanut butter cookie dough (unless you are allergic then please don't make this), a bag of Hersey Kisses and some sugar.  Scoop the cookie dough out into balls, roll the balls in sugar and bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes.  Pull out of the oven and pop a kiss right smack dab in the middle of that hot cookie.    Easy and yummy!!!  Bake some for your family and then give them a big glass of milk with those warm cookies and waalaaaa you are now a Queen!!  

I really hope today's post has shown you that you don't have to fall victim to the drive thru to feed your family inexpensively an quickly.  And next time, I will try not be so hard on myself for making quick easy dinners either. 

Peace, Love and Yummies my little elves!!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Soup and "soppin' biscuits"

Hey there!!!! Well I kinda sorta cooked dinner last night. Yeah well kinda sorta is better that nada!! Hehehe

So we went to the costco on Sunday and bought some necessities and some not so necessities. The king of unnecessary items would be the basketball arcade which resulted in moving furniture all over the place to make it fit in the game room. Eh, hubby and the Abogg were happy happy happy and....that makes me happy.

So last night we had the chicken noodle soup that we always seem to buy at the Costco. Seriously....the soup is soooooo yummmmooooooo!!!
However I needed some biscuits and didn't want to get out and after a little searching on the Internet I found a new recipe to try. Hubby loved them and declared them great "soppin' " biscuits. If you don't know how to sop your food, well, I'm sorry. You have no idea what you are missing out on. The Abogg and I thought they were ok but liked them much better after soppin' up the soup juice. I found the biscuits on a little blog called I will just say that I'm not sure mine turned out quite like hers but hubby was begging me to make another pan!!

First thing is take a 1/2 a stick of butter and cut it up into pieces into a 8x8 pan. Yeah yeah whatever...its butter so what??? Then turn the oven up to 450 degrees. When the oven temp reaches 450 pop that butter in the oven for one, yes I said one whole minute!
It should melt but swirl around the dish to mix it up and finish the melting process.

Now that you got the butter melted you need the rest of the ingredients.

Don't ya just love my Buddy the Elf sign?? I got that over at another nifty blog site It makes me smile!

Ok back to the biscuits.
Mix the following dry ingredients
1 1/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
I sifted mine and that may have made a difference, who really knows??!

Then we need to mix in 2/3 cup milk. You could use buttermilk but I didn't have any of that handy but I would have used it if I'd had any. Just mix it up enough to combine and you'll get a nice sticky blob like this

Then we are going to run our pizza cutter through the butter then in some flour and lay that aside. Now flour up those fingers and spread that dough out over the butter.

Now grab the pizza cutter and cut 9 squares out of that dough.

Pop those buttery babes in the oven and cook for about 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

Now serve those puppies up and if you don't want your dear child to make fun of you don't get the butter out as it will be pointed out that the biscuits are already swimming in a pool of butter!! Geez, send them to college and they get all smart on you!!

Best part just eat them with that soup!!!

I love nice easy dinners like this especially when someone is begging you to make more! ;0)

See ya tomorrow!!
Peace, Love and Yummies!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cheeseburger casserole and some outside photos

Hey there!!!
Did you think the condo got the best of me and I never came home??? Well let me tell you it almost did!!! I was one tired girl when I got home and it's been crazy since then. I am late getting my house decorated and shopping and baking!!! I'm catching up so hang with me!

Last week we had a Cheeseburger Biscuit casserole. It was yum so let's do this!!!

First up you need to get the ground beef and onion and green pepper going in the pan. And get that oven preheated to 400 degrees.

Now get the other stuff ready while that's cooking and browning and smelling all good.

Once that is all browned up drain if you need to. Now we are going to mix in the tomato sauce, ketchup and pepper. Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes and stir frequently.

Spoon about 1/3 of the meat mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish and top with some good ole' American cheese slices, then repeat and end with the meat.

Then you are going to arrange pillsbury's finest on top.

Pop it in the oven for about 15 minutes and serve!

How easy peasy was that?????

Quite yummy too!!!!

Here is the full ingredient list for ya:
1 lb lean ground beef
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper chopped ( I just used the whole thing)
8 oz can tomato sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
1/8 tsp pepper
8 slices american cheese
1 can biscuits
Opt; tobasco sauce and I hit the meat mixture with a squirt of mustard too.

There you have it a quick weeknight dinner!

And now I present the outside lights

We opted out of lining the roofline with lights this year since the hubby's back is bothering him a little and all the light contractors were already booked up. Next year we will book early!!

Hopefully next week when the kids start getting home we will be cooking and baking up a storm around here!!!

Peace, Love and Yummies!!!!

Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Connemara Ln,Fort Worth,United States

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A heartfelt apology.....a gratitude reminder for me today.

So this morning I'm driving the dog to the vet and the whole way praying that she comes home with me and hopefully feeling better.  Somewhere in that short 20 minute drive I realize that in the past two weeks I've had a lot of "stinkin' thinkin' " while I've been at the condo painting especially Sunday and Monday. I was pouty and lonely and wanted to come home.  Most of all I was dang tired!!  The dog being sick pretty much the whole time left me getting only about 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night and I was painting like a mad woman, falling off the bar stool regularly (it was the only thing I had to stand on to paint) and feeling like I still wasn't doing enough.   Then the car ride home yesterday was horrific...a sick dog, a 13 hour drive alone and several near misses with semi trucks, flying metal objects and a torrential downpour.  Needless to say I was not pleasant when I finally got home last night.  All I wanted was a glass of wine and a hot bath.  It was not to be as for some reason the hot water wasn't working in our tub and the back rub hubby promised turned out to feel more like a "beating" than a nice back rub.   Oh wait, I was apologizing for my "stinkin' thinkin' ".

Anyway I realized that I really had grumbled and moaned and whined about being all alone down in the condo spending my days and nights painting and trying to buy furniture and such for the place and dealing with a sick dog at the same time. What I had forgotten to do was take a few minutes to thank God for the blessing I was complaining about.  HELLLOOOOO!!!  I mean seriously...I was painting OUR FREAKIN" CONDO!!!!!   Our condo...our condo...our condo!  Did I ever dream those words would come out of my mouth??  Seriously I had the biggest I'm so sorry God moment in the car.  I can't begin to tell you all how grateful I really am that we have a condo at the beach.  A place to share with our children and hopefully one day our grandchildren (kids please note...this needs to be WAY down the road). A place to share with our friends and family.  We're not looking to make a ton of money by renting out the condo, we only want to cover our expenses and reinvest to keep it a nice place for us and everyone else.  We want to share this blessing with our friends and families and hope that you too will come to love those beautiful beaches as much as we do.  We want to make new memories with our kids and our friends and family.  We want to give everyone else the opportunity to take a little break from their hectic lives, slow down and look at the absolutely amazing beauty of the beach. Appreciate your families more and recharge yourself with a new outlook and remember what is really important to you.   You can't go to this beach and not look out and think "Wow God...that's some kind of gorgeous!"

so seriously, I'm apologizing to everyone for my lack of gratitude the past few weeks.  We may have been away from home for Thanksgiving and I was tired and we were missing 1 of our kiddos but you know what?  We have so very much to be thankful for in our lives and I want to make sure that God and all of you know that I am grateful. Grateful for every minute of every day and all the challenges and all the fun because I'm a child of God and everything that I have is nothing short of a generous gift from Him.    Be blessed my dear friends and be grateful for everything.

If you are interested, our sweet dog face is a sick girl.  She has been "unofficially" diagnosed with EPI.  Basically her pancreas is shutting down.  She got some medicine today that will hopefully make her feel better but we all know our days with that big lug are numbered.  The vet came in the room today while we were waiting on the blood work and he found us snuggling and I think I saw him get a little teary eyed.  She was standing on the exam table and her head resting on my shoulders and I was telling her all kinds of stuff.  She understands me, I know she does you see because we really need each other.  I haven't worked in almost a year now and at home she's my shadow, she drives me crazy and then makes me laugh.  Two weeks alone with her and 25 hours total in the car together...we've bonded even more so.  I hope and pray she feels better soon and stays around for a long time to annoy me and wake me up in the middle of the night and track mud all on my wood floors.  :0)
Kiss you big lug....I love you girl!!

Today I'm ending my post with a pic from the beach and a verse instead.  I wish for you peace and love!

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
James 1:17 ESV

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