Monday, April 7, 2014

A Taste of Spring Cleaning

Things have been rather chaotic around the house the past few weeks. We are in the middle of constructing a surprise (don't worry, I'll tell you all about it later!). And of course with the warmer weather comes the annual Spring Cleaning! If you're like me, I like to spend as little time as possible cleaning and prefer to start small. Here's a great way to start your spring cleaning and all it requires is doing a load of wash.


How To De-Stink Your Towels
Wash your towels on the hot cycle and add 1 cup of vinegar. Don't use detergent or anything else, just vinegar and hot water. This always does the trick for me, but if you still notice any lingering smells rewash them with hot water and 1/2 cup of baking soda. That's it. Simple right? Just remember to be careful about mixing colors with hot water. The colors may bleed so just wash them separately or with like colors. Afterwards, I always prefer to dry my towels with the Febreeze Bounce dryer sheets and they always smell wicked clean and fresh!


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Happy St. Patrick's Day

We celebrated St. Patrick's Day by making festive leprechaun hats!
The hats I just drew out freehand on construction paper and cut, then I cut the black band and yellow buckle to fit (ignore the tape, 2 yr olds tend to grab and rip things). I also made some burlap bags and painted a shamrock on them and filled them with the chocolate gold coins.
We even got Berta in on the St Patty's Day spirit, although she doesn't look to thrilled (hahaha).


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Lazy Sunday Mornings


How do you wind down on the weekends? We like to start our mornings off the lazy way...curled up on the couch, watching the news and drinking fruit smoothies. Today I mixed up some amazing Peanut Butter Banana Smoothies that even the kiddos love!

Ingredients:

  • 1 large banana, peeled
  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 heaping Tbsp. peanut butter
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions:

In a blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth, and serve immediately.

Source - Gimme Some Oven

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Peanut Butter Play-Doh

What better way to fix a rainy day than by making some edible peanut butter play-doh? The kiddos loved being able to help mix up a quick batch of play doh and were even more ecstatic that they could eat it! I've come across multiple recipes and while they all taste great, a lot of them used some form of oil and I found that the kids (and tables, chairs and anything else they managed to touch before I was able to chase them down and wipe them clean) got waaaay too greasy. This recipe from Kids Activities Blog is not messy at all and only has 3 ingredients!

Here's the recipe: 
  • 3 Marshmallows (or roughly 1/4- 1/2 cup of mini marshmallows, I eyeballed it)
  • 2 Tablespoons Peanut Butter
  • Powdered Sugar

Microwave the marshmallows and peanut butter in a bowl for about 10 seconds. Everything should be soft enough to easily mix together (if not microwave for a few more seconds). Once the peanut butter and marshmallows are completely mixed, sprinkle a little powdered sugar in. I eyeballed this too and only added about a teaspoon or so until the mix was no longer sticky.


M & BB loved it, although I think they ate more than they played with it.  :)


Saturday, March 8, 2014

Crockpot Cobbler


Ingredients:
1 box Decadent Chocolate Lovers cake mix
2 cans Comstock or Wilderness Country Cherry filling
1 stick of butter, melted 



Directions:
Put the cherry pie filling in crockpot. Add dry cake mix. Drizzle melted butter on top and do not stir. Cook on high for 4 hours. Plate and enjoy!

Tip: Save the frosting that comes in the box for another occasion or add it to your cooked cobbler for an extra decadent dessert.


Source - Duncan Hines

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Crispy Cheddar Chicken



Ingredients:
2 lbs chicken tenders or 4 large chicken breasts
2 sleeves Ritz crackers
1/4 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup whole milk
3 cups cheddar cheese, grated
1 teaspoon dried parsley

Sauce:
1 10 ounce can cream of chicken soup
2 tablespoon sour cream
2 tablespoon butter



Directions:
Crush crackers. If using chicken breasts and not tenders, cut each chicken breast into 3 large pieces. Pour the milk, cheese and cracker crumbs into 3 separate small pans. Toss the salt and pepper into the cracker crumbs and stir the mixture around to combine. Dip each piece of chicken into the milk and then the cheese. Press the cheese into the chicken with your fingers. Then press the cheesy coated chicken into the cracker crumbs and press it in.

Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray and lay the chicken inside the pan. Sprinkle the dried parsley over the chicken. Cover the pan with tin foil and bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove the tin foil, bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the edges of the chicken are golden brown and crispy.

In a medium sized sauce pan combine the cream of chicken soup, sour cream and butter with a whisk. Stir it over medium high heat until the sauce is nice and hot. Serve over the chicken.


Source - Foodies TV

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Bacon Beer Cheese Soup

You had me at bacon!



Ingredients -
6 slices thick cut bacon
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
¼ cup butter
¼ cup flour
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons ground chile de arbol (or cayenne pepper; to taste)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 cup beer, Belgian style wheat beer (Blue Moon)
1 cup chicken broth
2 cups half and half
8 ounces mild cheddar cheese, shredded
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
chives
croutons


Directions -
Warm an 8 quart pot over high heat.  Using clean scissors; cut bacon into pot.  Cook bacon until lightly crisp, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, cut chicken into bite size pieces.

Remove bacon from pan and place on a plate.  Add chicken into bacon grease to cook.  Stir occasionally until chicken is cooked through.  Remove chicken onto plate with bacon.

Cut butter into 1 tablespoon pieces and add to pan drippings.  Whisk in flour and spices.   Add beer, broth and half & half.  Whisk to combine and bring to a bubble.  Add cheese whisk to combine, stir until you have a smooth mixture.  Add Worcestershire sauce, chicken and bacon.  Stir to combine.

Allow to simmer until ready to serve, stirring occasionally.

Garnish with chives and croutons. 


Source - The Slow Roasted Italian