Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Information Central

This is where we keep our Menu for the week. The menu is kinda hard to see in the picture but it is easier to see in real life. We also have two dry erase boards one for memos and the other for grocery items as we need them. I keep the dry erase markers in a handy magnetic metal basket.

In the hall by the bedrooms we are going to put a big corkboard memo station. I will take pics of it when I get it done. I am trying to get us organized so that chaos does not rule.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

It BIT me!!!

What in the world is this thing? It just bit the crud out of me. Hurts like heck and I have a whelp from it. It is still stinging and burning. It isn't a fire ant I know what they are whole yard full of those, this is a bug I have only recently been seeing around outside and a few inside. This one crawled under my waistband of my pants and bit me, I grabbed it and threw it on the floor then grabbed my tweezers so I could get a picture of it.
Does anybody know what this evil bug is?

Love and Hugs to ya,

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I got a new gadget

Yep I did it. I bought the swiffer sweeper vac. I like it. I only have one complaint, the long charging time. Of course it is recommended that you leave it plugged in when not using which I have no problem with. I just hate to wait for it to charge to use it again. It goes right under the stove and dishwasher and fridge and other pieces of furniture a BIG plus with me. See I have two dogs and the big one drags in sand (Florida version of dirt) on her paws all the time they both drag in leaves. I also have tile floors throughout the house (only carpet in 3 bedrooms) so this works for me. Better than sweeping with a broom (a task I detest). I am pleased with my purchase. I like that the pad picks up dirt and dust too (we have no dirt in Florida but the dust grows by the hour). This is something I will be using everyday (thanks to the aforementioned dogs). Oh and the Big dog is an Akita and if you know anything about northern breed dogs (Akita's are Japanese mountain dogs) they blow, at least twice a year they loose their undercoat and you end up with tumbleweeds of fur that make Texas tumbleweeds cringe in terror. This will get a workout during blowing season!!!

Love and Hugs to ya!!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Yes, I am that cheap and proud of it!!!

I am "one of those people" yes I am and I am proud of it. I wear it like a badge of honor--I am cheap well I like to call it being frugal. I wash and reuse ziplock bags (especially those that I use with my freshsaver vacume sealer) and I wash and reuse the aluminum foil.

Now before you start to think I am this wonderful, dedicated, recycling Queen I must admit I do this more out of my need to save money any way I can. Oh don't get me wrong I am a tree hugger and do recycle I have tons of cardboard and other material that I am reusing in my crafts. No box goes to the curb in this house LOL. I am even converting several of the bigger boxes (from my QVC HSN addiction but that is another post) into solar ovens. Hey its Florida, sun and heat is something there is no shortage of.

So yes I will shout it from the rooftops "I am CHEAP--ahem FRUGAL"

Love and Hugs to ya!!

Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies

I made cookies today. I used the traditional back of the Tollhouse Chip Bag recipe. They are so yummy. I only baked off 8 of them the rest are to be frozen for later use. I scooped them with my small cookie scoop and put them on Saran Wrap Disposable cutting mats, they work well in the freezer for flash freezing especially if freezer room is an issue like it is in our case (but hey thats a good thing we have lots of food).
After they are frozen I will put them in a freezer bag then we can take them out as we want them. I like to keep cookie dough on hand like this.
Hope you are having a great weekend.

Love and Hugs to ya!

Hamburger Buns

The recipe for the hamburger buns I will have to work with, they were a bit heavy. They tasted fine though just heavy. Oh those are the dill pickles we canned this summer. I don't like dills, so this is mom's burger lol. They turned out good from what she says. I will be posting more about our canning adventures in later posts.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Homemade Hamurger Buns

Today we are having hamburgers for dinner, so I decided we need homemade buns. I have never made them before so here goes hope they turn out good. I will post an after pic later but here is what the dough looks like. They are whole wheat buns I got the recipe from the cookbook 300 Best Bread Machine Recipes. I have had numerous successes with this cookbook and absolutely love it! I hope this is another success.

hamburger and hot dog buns:

1 1/4 cups water
1 egg
1 1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 3/4 cups bread flour
1/3 cup buttermilk powder
1 1/4 tsp bread machine or instant yeast

Add ingredients to bread machine according to the recommendations of the manufacturer Select dough cycle.
Remove dough to a lihtly floured surface cover with a large bowl and let dough rest for 10-15 minutes for hamburger buns divide dough into 9-12 portions roll each into a ball and slightly flatten into a haburger bun shape. place buns on a greased baking sheet cover and let rise in warm draft free place for 30-45 minutes or until double in volume. bake in preheated oven at 375 egrees for 15-20 minutes or until buns sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Love and Hugs to ya


Friday, August 20, 2010

Purple is not an easy color to find

Because I could not find any patterned paper in purple that I liked (not much to choose from either) in the 3 stores I went to, I ended up picking out a pale purple plain paper and stamping it myself. These sheets will be used for the banner and cupcake wrappers for the Hello Kitty party package. It is a tedious process but I like the results.

Schwanns New Smoothies

Ok the Schwanns guy just dropped off our order (we preorder online) and of course he had a new catalog for us with new products and I am so weak!! Ok so we got our order of 5 Fiesta Lime Chicken (oh so good love it) and then I added these pineapple orange smoothies (got an orange thing going on today these are item 051 by the way in case you ever want to try them). They come 4 in a box we are going to save the cups and lids to put homemade ice cream in. It even came with cardboard straws LOL. Not bad tasting at all.

The other thing I talked myself into was the new sweet potato fries. You make them in the oven and sweet potato fries are so good for you. Can't wait to try them hope they are good. Other than those two add ons I behaved myself and was good.

The thing I love about ordering from Schwanns is that with our schwanns card we can put off the payment for up to two weeks. So when we are between pay periods we can still buy food and just advance it for two weeks. We usually order once a month sometimes though we will order both times he comes (every other week).

Orange Popsicles

I love orange popsicles. Of course so does everyone else in our household (mom and daughter love them too). Have you ever noticed how in a box from the store there are lots of cherry and tons of grape (yuck) and very few orange ones? Well that is why I make my own.

These are made from an orange breakfast drink called Bright and Early. I find it has a nice orangey (ok is that a word?) flavor that is not too watered down. I sometimes add orange tang (a good grape popsicle can be made from grape tang powder and water if you can find the grape tang powder) to the bright and early for even more orange goodness. I like the fact that these are much better for you than store bought.

Another great treat is to use pudding in your popsicle molds for great frozen pudding pops (remember the Bill Cosby commercials for Pudding Pops from Jello?). They are yummy and the flavor combinations are only limited to your imagination. Kids love them and they are full of calcium!!

So break out those popsicle molds and make some good for you treats. Here is another good idea pureed fruit with fruit bits in it, puree some strawberries and put cut up bits of strawberries in it mix with heavy whipping cream and a bit of sugar for a delicious treat.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sweet and sour stir-fry is what we had for dinner tonight. We liked it. I would only change a few things next time we have it. Of course I didn't have any bell peppers on hand so those were absent. I would deep fry the chicken next time and add more sweet and sour sauce. Other than that it was very good and relatively easy to make. The recipe is from Ultimate Bisquick Cookbook. So far a definate winner of a cookbook in our house so far.
Here is the recipe.

Sweet-and-Sour Chicken Stir-Fry:

1 cup Original Bisquick mix
1/2 tsp pepper
2 eggs
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast cut in chunks
1/4 cup of oil
3 medium carrots cut diagonally 1/4 in slices
1 medium green bell pepper cut in strips
1 small onion large diced
1 can (20 oz) pineapple chunks drained
1/2 cup sweet-and-sour sauce

in a large ziplock bag mix bisquick and pepper. In a medium bowl beat eggs slightly stir in chicken using a slotted spoon remove chicken from egg and add to bisquick mix. shake till chicken is coated. In a skillet heat 1 tblsp oil over medium high heat. add carrots cook 2 minutes add onions and pepper cook another 2
 minutes remove from skillet. add remaining oil and heat. Add chicken and cook stirring frequently till golden brown and no longer pink in center. Add vegetables cook for another 2 minutes until heated thoroughly. Stir in pineapple and sweet and sour sauce cook until thoroughly heated. Serve with rice.

Coffee,magazines,pantry inventory and no motivation

Today I have no motivation to do anything. Yep I said it the day is over for all intents and purposes and I have done nothing--shudder. I did drink my coffee an hour ago thinking it would spark me to get up and do something--nope didn't work. I laid my new magazines near me thinking it might motivate me to atleast finish looking at them--nope that didn't work either. And lets not even get started on that Pantry Inventory list that isn't done yet!!!
Ok I am having an off day. It is just so freaking hot here, even indoors with the AC going I just can't cool down. I went outside a few times to check the mail so hot out there (we seem to be under heat advisories every day) that I had to wear--shoes even after it rained briefly (so briefly I didn't even know it had happened but there was small puddles where there was none before so I guess it did). Rain here does not help with the heat if anything it just makes it like a sauna. YUCK!
So will I get anything done today? Maybe maybe not. Tomorrow is another day and hopefully I will snap out of this funk and do what I got to do. I think excessive frustration this morning is what killed any motiation I may have had. I have now got two missing cords to items I really need to use. My daughter hides the cords to things, she doesn't admit it so I think either A. she is losing her mind or B. she doesn't do it conciously and therefore has no recollection of doing it at all. I am leaning towards B but keeping an open mind.
I hope everyone is having a more productive day than I am.

Love and Hugs to ya!!


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Deep-Dish Taco Squares

This is what we had for dinner tonight. The recipe is from Ultimate Bisquick Cookbook. It is yummy and very easy to do.

Deep-Dish Taco Squares:

1/2 pound ground beef
1/4 cup chopped onions
2 tblsp taco seasoning mix
1 cup original Bisquick mix
1/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup myonnaise or salad dressing
1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1 medium tomato chopped
1 can (4.5 ounces) chopped green chiles

1. heat oven to 375 degrees Spray 8 inch square (2 quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray. In 8-inch skillet cook beef and onions over medium heat until thoroughly cooked drain stir in taco seasoning till mixed.
2. in medium bowl stir bisquick and water until soft dough forms. using fingers dusted in bisquick press in bottom of baking dish and 1/2 inch up sides.
3. In same bowl mix mayonnaise,sour cream, and cheese till blended.
4. Layer beef mixture, green chiles and tomatoes over dough spoon sour cream mixture over the top.
5. Bake 25-30 minutes or until edges of dough are light golden brown.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Well I am right on time this week, see miracles do happen!!! I have already had a busy morning. I have made breakfast, started dinner cleaned the mess I made in the kitchen,found the griddle (daughter hid it), found some cousins on facebook and requested thier friendship. The phone has been busy as well. My niece called this morning, then my nephew called. So here we go on to the task at hand Menu for the week!!

B: Lemon Poopyseed mini muffins
L: tuna sandwhiches
D: crockpot spaghetti sauce and french bread (half with garlic butter for me)

B: toaster struedells
L: leftover spaghetti
D: pork chops and roasted potatoes

B: sausage,bacon,eggs and hashbrowns
L:PF Chang seschwan beef
D: deep dish taco squares*

B: muffins
L: twice baked potatoes
D: Sweet and Sour Chicken stirfry*

B: sausage,bacon,eggs hashbrown
L: potato casserole*
D: schwanns Fiesta Lime Chicken

B: cereal
L: leftovers
D: hamburgers w/homemade buns oven fries*

B: muffins
L: tuna sandwhiches
D: oven fried chicken mashed potatoes biscuits*

The * means I will add the recipe in a later post (I need to open another page for recipes lol). Yes lots of potatoes on the menu this week, need to eat up the tons we got from the farmers market (no root cellar to keep them good longer). I will be making Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies, Ice Cream (homemade soft serve) and velvet crumb cake for desserts and special treats this week. I will also be making homemade bread this week.

The great news is that the only groceries I need to buy this week is tomatoes and chocolate chips and maybe milk!!! Everyhing else we already have in the freezers, fridge or pantries.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

New Item Hello Kitty

These are cupcake toppers. Aren't they the cutest? I just listed two sets on etsy (see bottom of page for link to shop) one with 8 the other with 12. I also have invitations and I will have cupcake wrappers also. I am busy busy busy getting stuff listed on my etsy shop. Mom says if I can bring in enough money with my crafts I can quit one of my jobs next year!!! Golly that would be nice.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Our 2 year old Furry Baby

Shilo is a rambuctios, two year old Akita. She weighs in at over 100 pounds and is 29 inches tall (back to floor), and 48 inches long (nose to tail). She is a very sweet girl, and an excelent guard dog, nothing gets past this girl. She is very loving and just a joy--most of the time!!! She has her moments!!! Try disciplining a 100 pound beast who thinks she is right all the time, comes at you like a freight train and whose brakes aren't so great!!!
When in the backyard she sounds like a Rhino coming out of the "forest" (milkweed is out of control again I hate that stuff). Remember the brakes that don't work to well? Well lets just say it can be a lot intimidating and frightening LOL.
She gets a run on and you need to just stay out of the way. Fortunatly her size makes her wear out relativly quickly. She is an expert at fetch. She sits mostly on command. But she is stubborn to the very core, typical of Akita's. Just wanted to share our pretty girl.
Love and Hugs to ya!!


Freezer Burritos

So I actually got around to making some burritos to put in the freezer for light quick meals and lunches. I just made a small batch of 7 burritos. I will make more later so we have a good supply on hand. I simply took and browned up a pound of ground beef, drained it added 1/4-1/2 cup water and 2-3 tblsp of taco seasoning. I heated up a can of refried beans (sometimes I make my own from scratch but time is not n my side this week). I then took my flour tortilla and layered beans, cheese,meat and salsa rolled it up and they are now flash freezing in the deep freeze. After they are frozen I will place them in a ziplock bag for storage. We just take one out throw it in the microwave, or fryer or oven. You can also take out a few put them in a casserole dish top with enchillada sauce and cheese and there you go.

Love and Hugs to ya!

Hello Kitty Invitations and Envelopes

Well I am finally ready to list this set of 8 or 12 on etsy. They are also available in blue, pink and green. So do you know a Hello Kitty fan? Someone having a birthday soon? Stop by and grab them while you can. Be sure to let me know what color you want (for the bows and envelope liner).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Coming Soon

Well I wanted to share a little of a new Party Package that will be in my etsy store soon I am going to have the invitations only listed after friday. I am so excited this set is for my niece's 6th birthday!!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Hamburger Supper

This is Hamburger Supper. All the recipes for this week come from the cookbook More Fixes with Mixes by Taste of Home. This one was ok but it definatly needed salt added and I probably would use 2 packets of brown gravy or atleast 1 1/2. But here is the recipe.

1 pound ground beef
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 envelope brown gravy
1 medium carrot sliced
1 medium onion sliced and seperated in rings
1 medium potato sliced
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

In a large skillet cook beef over medium heat till no longer pink. Drain. Stir in water, poultry seasoning and pepper. Bring to a boil and add gravy mix cook 2 more minute till thickend. Arrange the onion,carrot and potato slices over beef mixture reduce heat and cover cook for 15-20 minutes till vegetables are tender. Sprinkle with cheese cover and cook 3-5 more minutes till cheese is melted. 4 servings.

Just sharing the love

Hi all!
I found a new blog that I just love! I wanted to share it with you so here is the addie  find her posts to be hilarious and who can't use a good laugh each day? So go check it out!!
I will be posting two recipes today complete with pics!! So keep tuned in!

Love and hugs to ya!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Monday Menu Planning (late LOL) 8/9-8/15

Well this will be a regular entry on Mondays. I am late getting it on here this week. Keep an eye out for it everyweek. I will include recipes also.

breakfast: Orange Rolls (store bought)
Lunch: sandwiches
Dinner: Grilled chicken breasts, Mac and cheese and salad

Breakfast: Toaster Struedels
Lunch: Taco Meatball Ring (recipe in earlier post)
Dinner: Leftovers and Orange Creamsicle Homemade sherbet

Breakfast:Dandy Donut Muffins (I will add the recipe later)
Lunch: Hamburger Supper (recipe added later)
Dinner: leftovers

Breakfast: Cereal
Lunch: Cranberry Chicken and Rice (recipe added later)
Dinner: Leftovers

Breakfast: Cinnamon rolls
Lunch: Hot Ham and Pineapple Sub (recipe to be added later)
Dinner: leftovers

Breakkfast: cereal
Lunch: taco twists (recipe to be added later)
Dinner: leftovers

Breakfast: Cinnamon Rolls
Lunch: Country Style Chicken, Mashed Potatoes and corn (recipe for chicken to be added later)
Dinner: leftovers

During the summer till school starts again (I am a school crossing guard so the summer is a nice break for me) we eat our biggest meal in the middle of the day. After school starts it will be leftovers and light lunches again and bigger meal for dinner.
Check back for recipes and next weeks menu.
Well this is called Taco Meatball ring and it is what we had for dinner (we ate early and will eat leftovers later). It was easy to make and tasted GREAT!!! Here is the recipe:

Taco Meatball Ring:

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese divided
2 Tbls water
2 Tblsp taco seasoning
1/2 pound of ground beef
2 tubes (8 ounces each) crescent rolls
1/2 medium head iceberg lettuce shredded
1 tomato chopped
4 green onions sliced
2 jalapeno peppers sliced
sour cream and salsa

In a large bowl combine 1 cup cheese water and taco seasoning. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well shape into 16 balls.
Place meatballs on greased rack in shallow baking dish. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 12 minutes or until no longer pink. Drain on paper towels. Reduce oven to 375 degrees.
Arrange crescent rolls on a greased 15 inch pizza pan forming a ring with points facing out of the pan with wide ends overlapping. Place a meatball on each roll and tuck point over it. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until rolls are golden brown.
Serve with rest of the ingredients.