Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Where does the time go?

Was reminiscing today over old photos and came across this one of Grace in preschool at age 4. She will be 8 in just a few weeks......where does the time go??

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Pampered chef chicken braid

Chicken broccoli braid
I do my own chicken instead of using canned, I put 2-3 boneless chicken breasts in a pan, put enough water over it to cover. Bring to a boil, turn off heat and place lid on pan and leave for 1-2 hrs.(atleast 1 hr) It will be cooked perfect for shredding or cubing etc. Cube chicken, 2-3 chicken breasts makes extra chicken ( freeze it for another time or use it in something else).
1 1/2 C. cubed chicken (or 1 can)
1 bag frozen broccoli, cooked in microwave
1 can water chestnuts, chopped
2 T. onion, chopped small ( or 2 green onions)
1 C. shredded cheese, cheddar or whatever you like
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 C. sour cream
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. chicken seasoning salt
1/4 t. cracked black pepper
2 pkg. of croissant rolls
Mix all ingred's in a large bowl, spread croissants out on baking sheet as shown and make 8 slices in the edge of the rolls not going all the way to the center, about 1/3 of the way in (see photo, I use a pizza roller) Spread filling down center of rolls and bring each slice of roll up to the center/top and twist, do the same on the other side and pinch the ends together. Bake at 375* for 25 mins. until bubbling. Sprinkle with more cheese when you remove it from the even, let it sit for 5-8 mins. before slicing. I omit the onion and water chestnuts sometimes to make it more kid friendly, or friendlier for my girls! this is not the exact recipe as pampered chef but close, I like more seasoning and I like the sour cream especially and the cheese on top! ENJOY!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Wolf dogs!

We are having Icefest in our city this weekend. There are many ice sculptures along the streets. We plan to take an evening drive to see some that are lit up at night! One of the cool things they had today were Sled Dog demos. Grace ADORES "wolf dogs" as she calls them so the girls were both thrilled to see these cuties. The photo with the dogs in the pen were puppies, and the other was a dog that jumped up on the girls to give some doggie lovins and licks! A really fun experience for them! The owners were rubbing Vaseline on the dogs paws to keep them from freezing and make them more comfortable in the cold. Yesterday it was almost 30* and today it's 15 and minus windchill......oh well a good day for sculpting ice!

Friday, January 23, 2009

It's snow much fun!

Grace having some fun in the snow! perfect snowman weather yeseterday!

Monday, January 19, 2009


I came across a neat article today via Biblical Womanhood on what a wife should not do to her husband! I hope you enjoy it and I hope you are encouraged to be a support to your hubby! Click on the link below! http//

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Stuffed Meat Pizza!

We are trying to eat more healthy, at least more healthy than we did over the Holidays! yikes! So I pulled out a cookbook my girlfriend got me in the Spring for my Birthday. It's a new updated and revised version of a cookbook called: Trim and Terrific Friendly Freezer meals. I found some really yummy things in there to try and this recipe was one we tried last night! It was a perfect Friday night meal. (Although my girls aren't fans of ground beef so they had Mac N Cheese if you can imagine!) I made the recipe double and froze two halves. It serves 10 the recipe says but I made it serve 8 so we could indulge a "bit". ha It was Friday night after all! I had a whole 1/2 left and boy was it good leftover for lunch today! I made 2 bags of fresh spinach last night to go with it which was a good side dish and DON'T ask why the Tator Tots, we just had a craving! haha Enjoy!
Stuffed Meaty Pizza
1 loaf Italian or French bread
1 1/2 lbs. ground sirloin (I used chuck)
1 ts. minced garlic
1 onion finely chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped, peeled carrot (I used one large carrot)
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 ts. Allspice (which I didn't have so I used Pumpkin pie spice, the only dif. is the Ginger which wasn't bad at all!)
1/2 C. red wine
1/2 C. beef broth (I used 1 C. beef broth to sub. the wine)
1 14.5 oz can pureed tomatoes(I would try this with canned pizza sauce too for more spice, the tomatoes are a more fresh tomato taste, if you wanted a pizza taste it would be good to change it up)
2 T. chopped parsley (I used 2 ts. dry)
1 1/2 C. shredded, part skim Mozzarella
2 T. grated Romano cheese (I used Parm)
2 T. chopped fresh basil (a must I think) you could use 2ts. dry
Preheat oven to 450*. Split bread lengthwise and hollow out most of the inside of each bread leaving a shell. (bag the hollowed out parts to enjoy another time or eat it with butter while you wait, OR make bread crumbs) Lightly crisp the bread in the oven for 5 mins. watching carefully.
In a large non-stick skillet over med. heat, cook beef, garlic, onion and carrots until the meat is done and the vegetables are tender. Drain any excess grease. Add the Worc. sauce, Allspice, wine, broth, and tomatoes. Cook for 10 mins. or until liquid is reduced. Season with salt and pepper and add parsley. Transfer meat mixture to fill the inside of the bread. Sprinkle with cheeses.
To Prepare and Eat Now: Heat broiler, and broil the loaves only until cheese is melted, about one minute sprinkle with Basil and serve.
To freeze: Do not bake before freezing. Cool to room temp., then wrap, label and freeze. I froze mine without the cheese so I could add it later but then you have to make sure you have the cheese on hand when you make it. Freezing time: up to 2 mos.
To prepare after freezing: Defrost or cook directly from freezer. If cooking directly from freezer, bake at 375* for about 15 mins. or until heated THROUGH and cheese is melted. Otherwise, heat the broiler and broil the loaves until cheese is melted about one minute. Sprinkle with basil and serve!
Cals: 281 Protein 23, Carbs:28, Fat: 8 Diabetic ex: 2.5 lean meat 1.5 starch 1 Veg.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Soup's on!

This is a light creamy soup that tastes even better the next day.'s a good soup to put on the stove Sunday afternoon and enjoy it for lunches throughout the week! Packed with veggies it's good for you!
Spinach Soup
1 Med. onion, chopped
46 oz. Chicken broth, I use bouillon cubes
4 T. butter
2 C. powdered Creamora (or 1 C. milk if you don't have the Creamora, but the Creamora does make it a bit creamier)
2 carrots, peeled and sliced thin (or 1 C. frozen slices)
2 Med. potatoes, peeled and sliced in 1/2 slices(use 1 can sliced if you want to)
1/4 C. instant brown rice
1/2 t. salt
Pepper to taste
1 small box frozen spinach, thaw in a colander over a bowl
Saute' onion in the butter, bring broth to a low boil. Add onions/butter to broth, add Creamora, stir. Lower heat to a simmer and add carrots, potatoes and rice. Simmer for 30 mins. Add spinach and simmer another 20 mins. Serve, freeze or use throughout the week.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


A fast and easy meal anytime! I got this recipe from a friend years ago and we still enjoy it often!

Italian Sub
1 loaf Italian bread, unsliced (or Ciabatta bread) from the bakery section
Honey roasted turkey, sliced thin
Salami sliced thin
Provolone cheese, slices (or Shredded Mozzarella)
Mild yellow pepper rings in the jar
Large tomato, sliced thin
Shredded lettuce, washed
Onion, sliced very thin (purple is good if you like it)
Marzetti Italian dressing(this is a nice thick sweet dressing), or your favorite Italian dressing
Slice bread loaf evenly, lightly butter the top piece. Preheat oven to 425*. Lightly butter bottom part of bread, layer turkey, salami, tomatoes, yellow peppers, thin sliced onion, then pour Italian dressing over this and place cheese slices on top (or sprinkle with shredded Mozzarella) Place on a cookie sheet with foil underneath, and bake 10-15 mins. until cheese is at desired bubbliness! ha
Place the top of the bread loaf on the pan in the oven the last 3-4 mins. butter side up, NEXT to the bottom portion to toast it lightly. Take out of oven, place shredded lettuce on top of cheese and replace bread top. Slice into 3" wide sections and serve!
This recipe feeds our family of 5 with side dishes, but I often make 2 since we have a teenage son that eats alot lately! plus it's pretty good leftover! You can also place thin sliced pickle on the sub after it comes out of the oven if you like.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Cornbread and Chili.....

A Delicious winter combo of comfort foods......high in iron too! ha I know everyone has their own favorite Chili recipe so I'll share mine in case there's someone else who like mild Chili, I don't like alot of heat in my chili, I like it a bit on the thicker side and I love it leftover! The reason you see a small pot is that I asked the girls if I made them a small pot of their own without meat and onion would they eat it, they said they would and they did!


1 lb. ground beef

1 large onion, diced

1 large can Tomato juice (48 oz)

1 15 oz can crushed tomatoes (I don't like chunks in mine but you can used diced or stewed, I like home canned stewed tomatoes in it but if I don't have them I used canned crushed or pured')

2 cans dark red kidney beans

1 can light red kidney beans

1 can butter beans (that I forgot to add, ha)

1 can corn, drained

1 can chili beans, medium (this gives you a mild heat, use HOT if you want alot of heat)

1/2 ts. chili powder

2 T. sugar

1 t. salt

ground pepper to taste

Brown beef and onions, drain, add tomato juice, tomatoes and remaining ingredients. Let simmer for 2-3 hrs. After you brown the beef and onion, you can transfer all these ingredients to a crock pot too for the day! it doesn't get as thick as it does on the stove if you make in the crock pot but it's all good! ha

Cornbread casserole

2 small boxes Jiffy cornbread mix, make according to directions on box, add one can creamed corn, pour into sprayed 8 x 8 baking dish or a baking dish close to that size, pour 1/4 C. melted butter over, sprinkle lightly with white sugar and bake 35-40 min. at 400*. It will be slightly soft in center, remove from oven and put a few dabs of butter on top and spread. Let sit about 10 mins. to set!

Forgive my sideways photo, haha I didn't know how to turn it! ha In a larger soup bowl put a scoop of corn bread to the side, chili to the side of that, add a BIG dollop of sour cream over the chili, sprinkle some shredded cheddar cheese over the top of ALL of that.....Put in an episode of I Love Lucy, turn out the lights, light a few candles ....better yet light a fire and ENJOY!!! it's very filling! You have to get just the perfect bite too....a bit of cornbread with the chili and toppings! yummm I'm still stuffed! And just think how you are boosting your iron with that red meat and food! hahaha

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Oreo bars!

I came across this recipe over the holidays and they are my new favorite holiday cookie, I tweeked the recipe to our tastes and if you love chocolate you'll love this! you only need a small square to satisfy a chocolate craving! Enjoy! It's a twist on Magic Cookie Bars so it's really simple!
Oreo Magic Cookie bars
28 reduced fat Oreos, divided
1/4 C. (1/2 stick) butter or marg, melted
1 C. Flaked coconut
1 C. Semi Sweet Chocolate chips
1/2 C. chopped walnuts or pecans
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
Preheat oven to 350*. Finely crush 20 of the cookies. (Crush the remaining cookies in a baggie coarsely, about the size of the choc. chips) (I used a food processor for the finely crushed cookies but you could crush them in a Ziploc using a heavy jar or can).
Mix crushed cookies and melted butter and press into 9 x 13 pan. Cover with layers of coconut, choc. chips, walnuts and remaining cookies; drizzle evenly with condensed milk.
Bake 25 mins. until center is set and the top is golden brown; cool completely. Cut into 24 bars. Store in tightly covered container at room temperature.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!! This is just before the stroke of 12, everyone was ready to blow their poppers. Mike is ready to go (up front), notice my dad in the back, he doesn't like loud noises like me! ha