Monday, November 29, 2010

I'm baaack!!

I feel like I've been away for much longer than a week! I hope everyone had a fan-tabulous Thanksgiving holiday.  I spent my week at Disney World! 
Mr. Two is missing since he was asleep in his stroller!

It was a very busy, very tiring, but very fun week with my hubs and the kids.  We crammed as much into each day as we possibly could, so the kids could experience as much as possible.  This was their first trip to Disney, and they were amazed!  As for me, I'm feeling a little...
Dopey

Because the week (the whole month actually), went by like a
blurrrrr!

I will torture give you all a recap of our trip and pics when I get myself together.  Since it's Cyber Monday...I've got to get some shopping done!!!  I'll catch up with everyone ASAP!


Saturday, November 20, 2010

HaPpY ThAnKsGiViNg WeEk!!!!

Harvest Blessing Mix

Bugles - represents a cornucopia...horn of plenty
Pretzels - represents arms folded in thanks and prayer
Candy Corn - During the first winter, the pilgrims were each allowed 5 kernels of corn per day b/c food was so scarce.
Raisins - Thanksgiving is the celebration of the harvest
Sunflower seeds - Seeds represent the potential of a bountiful harvest for the next season, if they are planted and well tended.
Chocolate chips - What's a mix without chocolate?

In reading that last line you are probably thinking I made this up, b/c, you know, I heart chocolate.  However, my little one brought this home from preschool yesterday and I thought it was very cute!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, and remembers to give thanks  to God for all your blessings. Remember to give thanks for all you DO have, not what you DON'T.  If I learned anything from my Dad's battle with cancer, it's to be grateful for every day that you are here, don't sweat the small stuff, and love, love, love like there is no tomorrow....because tomorrow is not a guarantee.  With that being said, I am so grateful that so far, my Dad is kicking cancer a*s! I pray everyday that it continues, and I pray for all those facing the battle, and for the families who are without a loved one this holiday season because of it.

I'll be taking a little bloggy break this week, as I feel many of us will, so don't forget about me ;)  Happy Thanksgiving!


Friday, November 19, 2010

Indian Corn

I've seen all these cute things dealing with Indian corn....
via
So I thought I'd share them with everyone.  Since the kiddies will be out of school a few days next week, you may want something to keep them busy ---especially on Thursday when you're trying to get things done in the kitchen!  Get the bigger kids to help the little ones make these....

Indian Corn Craft from Moments of Mommyhood.  I thought this was super cute as well as super easy.  Always a plus with kids.  You basically just need paint, bubble wrap and construction paper!

This....
Ok, so it doesn't look so great now, b/c I didn't think about taking a picture before it got squashed, broken in two and "molded" back together, etc....Plus, it was made by a 2 year old. (with help of course!)  This is supposed to be "indian corn".  It's made of popcorn, raisins, dried apricots and butter.  Mix everything together with the melted butter and mold into "corn" shape.  My son made this at preschool.
Edible Indian Corn
This is something similar, found here.


Indian Corn Cupcakes from the blog Cupcake Wednesdays

This requires a little more effort, but if you have older kids who can bake, the younger kids could  decorate.  Cute, especially if you do one of the other crafts with it, and have a whole little "theme" going.  These are just cupcakes and Jelly Belly jellybeans!!  Love it.

So, just thought I'd share :)  Happy Friday!  I'll probably do a Friday Blog Hop post later (if I can find the time!) Today is super busy with a party at preschool, lunch with Miss Number Two, Girl Scouts (and it's my turn to provide snack)....and the list goes on and on and on and on.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thanksgiving Recipes

This week's SaS theme is Thanksgiving DESSERTS!!  Obviously one of my favorite things.  I love some turkey and stuffing...but then bring on the sweets :D

I've made both of these in previous years, and thought they were pretty yummy so I thought I'd share.  They both came from allrecipes.com.

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie Recipe

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients

1 cup canned pumpkin puree

1 cup apple butter

1/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 eggs, beaten

1 cup evaporated milk

1 (9 inch) unbaked deep dish pie crust

STREUSEL TOPPING:

3 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2.In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, apple butter, 1/4 cup brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Stir in eggs and evaporated milk. Pour into prepared pie shell.

3.Bake in preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a knife inserted 2 inches from the center comes out clean. Sprinkle streusel topping over the pie (see #4), and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

4.To make the streusel topping: In a small bowl, combine butter, flour, and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Stir until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in pecans.

AND, since I couldn't decide on just one recipe to share...

A yummy spoonful of Cranberry Apple Casserole


Ingredients

1 (21 ounce) can apple pie filling

1 (16 ounce) can whole berry cranberry sauce

1/4 cup butter, softened

1 1/2 cups rolled oats

3/4 cup brown sugar

Directions

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2.Combine apple pie filling and cranberry sauce in a shallow baking dish.

3.In a medium bowl, mix the butter, oats, and brown sugar until crumbly. Sprinkle evenly over the fruit mixture.

4.Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until browned and crisp.
*********************************************************************************
So there you have it, some desserts for your Thanksgiving feast!!  Hop over to Think Tank Momma and see some other fab desserts, and link up your own family traditions!  (Or new recipes you're gonna try this year!)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cheerios Breakfast COOKIES!

Yes, you read correctly...cookies. For breakfast.  What kind of mom gives their kids cookies for breakfast?  Well, this mom apparently.  My kids think I rock.  Today anyway.  My girls have been skipping out on breakfast lately.  Too busy "getting ready".  Why do you need to spend more than 5 minutes getting ready for the 2nd and 4th grade?  Anyway, I know this is only the beginning of that drama. 

I decided I would make something 'portable' that they could grab'n go, but I wanted it to be semi-healthy.  It needed to have some protein, and complex carbs.  Pop-Tarts, most granola bars, etc. just didn't really have the ingredients in them that I felt my kids need for breakfast.  So I went on an internet search and found several breakfast cookie recipes, which are kind of like homemade granola bars shaped into a cookie. 

I narrowed my search to this one, b/c I had all the ingredients on hand.  It is full of whole grains from whole wheat flour, oats, and Cheerios (which I think are just thrown in for texture and to make you feel like you really are giving your kids something breakfast worthy).  There is also protein in the form of peanut butter and a serving of Egg Beaters....sorry Mr. Terrible Two, these are off limits for you.  As good as those ingredients sound, these are definitely not the perfect breakfast.  There is plenty of sugar in them...white sugar and chocolate chips!  However, I didn't want to have a whole batch of "cookies" that the kids wouldn't eat, so I didn't mess with the sugar quantities this time.  It is a good base recipe to play with, and I'll be experimenting with it (sorry kids).  I think some pureed prunes or carrots would be a good addition, as well as some walnuts or almonds and dried fruit.
Anyway, my kids chowed down on their cookies this morning.  They were actually excited to eat breakfast, and ate one before they even started getting ready!  Guess I'll have to come up with more exciting breakfast options to get them to eat.  I do believe that breakfast is the most important meal of the day!  Of course, I think every meal is important, which is why my jeans are getting very tight :P

Want the recipe?

Cheerios Breakfast Cookies

•3/4 cup granulated sugar

•1/4 cup canola oil

•3/4 cup peanut butter

•1/4 cup water

•1 tsp. vanilla extract

•1/4 cup egg substitute (such as Egg Beaters)

•1-1/2 cups white whole wheat flour

•1/2 tsp. baking soda

•1/2 tsp. salt

•1-1/2 cups old-fashioned or quick-cooking rolled oats **I used old-fashioned

•3 oz. mini chocolate chips  **I used a 1/2 cup of regular semi-sweet (all I had)

•3 cups Cheerios cereal  **We always have these on hand!

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Beat sugar, canola oil, peanut butter, water, vanilla and egg substitute together with an electric mixer until well-combined. Stir in flour, baking soda, salt, oats and chocolate chips. Very gently, fold in the Cheerios. Drop the dough (it will be sticky) by rounded quarter-cupfuls onto an ungreased or silpat-lined cookie sheet. Flatten the dough gently with your fingertips.  I about an 1/8th cup more water b/c it was very dry.

Bake cookies in the preheated oven 13 to 15 minutes until lightly browned around the edges. Cool completely before serving. Store in an airtight container or freeze in a sealed Ziploc bag for up to two months.  **I found ours only needed to cook for about 11-12 minutes.  I guess it just depends on your oven.

Makes 20 breakfast cookies. 
Per cookie: 206 calories, 10 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 26 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 6 g protein, 9% Vitamin A, 2% Vitamin C, 3% calcium, 21% iron **info per website

So, go make your kids some cookies for breakfast!

I'm linking up today with.....




and Home and Pantry is hosting a Pantry Recipe Swap!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Pumpkin Spiced Scones with Crystallized Ginger

Pumpkin Spiced Scones with crystallized ginger and ginger molasses icing -or- orgasm in yo' mouth.  These things were fabulous.  Incredible.  Deeeevine.  However, they have a very distinct flavor.  If you do not like ginger...these are not for you.  I happen to love ginger, especially after eating these babies.  Which caused me to need to spend extra time on the dreadmill.  I mean treadmill.  Notice I said I "need to" not "I did".  I did my usual mileage (barely), but just couldn't do more.  Apparently, scones are more conducive to laying on the couch instead of running.  Anyway....I've seen a few recipes around blogland for pumpkin scones, pumpkin scones with crystallized ginger, etc.  Today, when I started looking at the different recipes I decided on this one from Pinch My Salt.  Then, I made a few changes...which I know shocks no one who has read my blog more than five minutes.  You should go to the site, b/c it has way better pictures with prettier icing  - just so you'll know what it's supposed to look like!  But I don't care how they look, they tasted incredibly awesome.


Food styling at its best *ahem*.  And notice the orange paper plate instead of the classic white you normally see ;) 
They be's my fancy plates.

Honestly, I didn't take much time to take pics b/c I was so excited to EAT them! I had already sampled the dough, so I knew they were gonna be good, and they didn't disappoint. 

So, the recipe already.....

Pumpkin Spiced Scones w/Crystallized Ginger

*adapted from Pinch My Salt; my changes in italics*
1 C. whole wheat flour

1 C. cake flour

1 1/2 t. baking powder

1/2 t. salt

1/2 t. ground cinnamon

1/2 t. ground nutmeg

1/4 t. ground allspice

1/4 t. ground ginger

4 T. Smart Balance 50/50 blend

1/4 cup crystallized ginger (chopped)

1/2 cup pumpkin puree 

1/3 C. heavy cream

6 T. brown sugar

1 t. vanilla

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper/silicone mat/cooking spray (whatever you have). 
  3. Cut butter into small pieces, put it in a small bowl and put it back in the refrigerator. 
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together both flours, baking powder, salt, and all spices.
  5. Place bowl in freezer (refrigerator is fine too).
  6. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin, heavy cream, brown sugar, and vanilla. Put this bowl in freezer (or refrigerator) and take the other bowl back out. 
  7. Get the butter pieces out of the fridge and dump them into the bowl with the flour mixture. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender/two knives or rub it in with your fingertips until it resembles coarse crumbs. 
  8. Stir in the crystallized ginger if using.
  9. Get the liquid mixture out of the freezer and pour into the flour mixture all at once. Stir with a wooden spoon until everything is just combined. The dough will be very crumbly, this is okay.
  10. Turn the mixture out onto the counter and make a pile with your hands. It should stick together fairly well. Knead it just a couple of times until everything is together. Don’t knead it too much or the dough will get too sticky. 
  11. Pat the dough out into a rough circle, 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Cut it like a pie into 8 pieces. Place pieces on the baking sheet so that they are not touching. Bake scones for about 15 minutes at 425 degrees. They should be light brown on the bottom when done.

Icing: For ginger molasses icing, stir together 1 T. molasses, 1-2 T. milk, and 1/4 – 1/2 t. ground ginger (to taste). Adjust the amount of sugar or milk to make the icing the consistency you want. It should be pretty thick. For cinnamon icing, mix together 1 C. powdered sugar, 2 T. milk, 1/4 – 1/2 t. cinnamon (to taste). Again, adjust amounts to change consistency. Icing can be brushed on or drizzled.

**I was confused abt the icing...the ginger molasses icing. - should it have powdered sugar too?  I assumed so since it was super thin otherwise, but also very sweet.  Not sure about that part, you'll have to experiment like I did.  My icing was too thin, but I didn't want to add anymore sugar, so I ended up brushing it on the scones not pictured.  The plate that is pictured was devoured moments later somehow disappeared.  I have no knowledge of what happened to it.  They were stolen, I'm sure of it. (lie)
 
This recipe requires a lot of steps and bowls...
But I have to say it was worth the clean up.  Like Mr. Grumpy?  Definitely fitting for me first thing in the morning.  Or anytime really.  I sure wish I had not put the remaining scones in the freezer, b/c I'd really like another one.  (I have no idea if they freeze well, but I had to do something to keep myself from gorging on the entire batch.  Plus, my Dad likes ginger so I thought I'd save him some.)

I made the scones on Sunday, so this morning I'm having pumpkin oatmeal.  I'm wondering when I'll start to look like I have jaundice.  I actually rushed my first child to the pediatrician when she was very young b/c she started turning orange.  Turns out, it was just because she was mainly eating orange veggies :D  The doc thought it was pretty funny.  Some nurse I am.  But, you know how it is with your first child, you freak out about everything.  Now, after 3 kids, they have to be bleeding profusely, have an object embedded somewhere, or thick green mucous before heading to the doctor.  mmmm, green mucous.  That's a nice thought to go along with my pumpkin scones.  Sorry folks, that's life with kids.

I hope everyone had a great weekend, and getting ready for THANKSGIVING!!  I can't believe how fast the month of November is flying by...crazy.  I sure hope Santa is getting his mess together.

Monday blog hops.....Living on Love and CentsKdBuggie BoutiqueJust Married with CouponsRecipe linkys - 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Nutrition information from my 9 y/o

This summer I posted a "blog post" by my 9 year old daughter.  I call her my little sponge, b/c she sucks up and holds onto to everything she's ever seen or heard.  This comes in handy when it comes to vocabulary tests, math facts, etc.  Not so great when she tells ALL to family, friends, neighbors, you get the picture... But her previous post, found here, was regarding nutrition, what to eat, what not to eat, why McDonald's is evil, etc.  Well, Number One has created another informational post that I thought I'd share - this is a compilation she came up with from some literature from her running club and from her dear mother.  She has just a few typos, which I have left, b/c, well, she's 9. And it's cute.

Energy Equation - (Her title)
by Mo'Betta's Number One


Carbohydrates + Protien + fiber

In a nutshell

Carbohydrates essetial for physical activity proper organ function.

Protein makes muscels grow and helps the immune system. Protein also helps the body digest carbohydrates more slowly wich stabilizes energy levels.

Fiber is a type of carbohydrates that keeps the arteries and digestive tract clean. Along with protein, fiber also slows down the digestion of carbohydrates.

More tips on your diet:

1.You should have at least 2-3 servings of meat poultry fish eggs nuts and dry beans a day.

2.You should have at least 2-3 servings of milk yogurt and cheese a day.

3. You should have at least 5 glasses of water a day.

4.Fats oils and sweets don’t even have a serving you should only eat them sparingly.

How to get 200 calories eat one of these servings:

1. 12 steamed shrimp

2. 2 pats of butter

3. 2 tablespoons of peanut butter

4. 12 ounces of orange juice

5. 35 pieces of celery

6. 3 slices of bread

7. ¾ of a donut

8. 1 bowl of cereal with milk

9. 1 piece of fudge

To burn 200 calories:

1. Run for ½ hour

2. Walk for 1 hour

3. Sit perfectly still for 4 hours

I LOVE that last one...I am all over that.  I wish.  Anyway, I thought this was super cute and informative and makes me think about what comes out of my mouth, for it is being listened to and tucked away, whether I realize it or not!

Happy Friday!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Share a Spoon - Thanksgiving style

It's Thursday and I've been missin' the Momma...so I'm reposting my Pumpkin Biscuits for Share a Spoon!  This month is all about Thanksgiving...and today is about your favorite sides. 
 click HERE to Share a Spoon!

We always have turkey, ham, stuffing/dressing, chicken salad and they are DELICIOUS.  And they are all made by my mother.  Yes, I am almost 40 years old, and my mommy does all the cooking for Thanksgiving.  The sides vary...but usually there are green beans (you should check out Think Tank Momma's good ol' southern style green bean recipe), rolls of some sort, cranberry sauce, potatoes or rice, deviled eggs.  They vary a little depending on what my mom feels like fixing.  But...I'm thinking that these would make an awesome addition to the Thanksgiving table.  Not this year, b/c I'm missing Thanksgiving FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER at my parents' house.  We're going to Disney World.  But, I don't want to talk about that.  I'm depressed about missing Thanksgiving.  It seemed like a good idea over a YEAR ago when we made the reservations.  Now...not so much.  A LOT has happened in the past year.  Anyway, I didn't want to talk about it, and here I am talking about it.  Moving on...

Pumpkin Biscuits from Cooking Light... and Me
9 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2 cups) *I used 1&1/2 cups all-purpose and 1/2 cup whole wheat

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces *I used Smart Balance 50/50

1/3 cup fat-free buttermilk *I added a teaspoon of vinegar to skim milk (b/c I never have buttermilk!)

3/4 cup canned pumpkin

3 tablespoons honey

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 400°.

2. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a large bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Chill 10 minutes. (I forgot to chill for 10 minutes)

3. Combine buttermilk and honey, stirring with a whisk until well blended; add canned pumpkin. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture; stir just until moist.

4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 4 times. Roll dough into a (1/2-inch-thick) 9 x 5–inch rectangle; dust top of dough with flour. Fold dough crosswise into thirds (as if folding a piece of paper to fit into an envelope). Reroll dough into a (1/2-inch-thick) 9 x 5–inch rectangle; dust top of dough with flour. Fold dough crosswise into thirds; gently roll or pat to a 3/4-inch thickness. Cut dough with a 1 3/4-inch biscuit cutter to form 14 dough rounds. Place dough rounds, 1 inch apart, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400° for 14 minutes or until golden.
Remove from pan; cool 2 minutes on wire racks. Serve warm.

*I'll be honest (b/c when am I not?), I just kinda kneaded it some, patted it some, flipped it a couple of times....all that direction of folding, etc was a little too much for me to handle with 3 kids running around - but I'm sure it would have made even fluffier, flaky biscuits
mmmm, don't you want one right now? with some butta...
with the exception of that one in the corner with all the flour on it, it's not cute.

Now go give some love and link up!

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread


 Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread!!

Holla at me...how good does that look?!  And it's good for you!  (okay, with the exception of the sugar).  The Candid RD talks about some of the benefits of pumpkin here.  Check it out.  And since it had chocolate chips in it, my kids ate it. Yes, I'm talking past tense, b/c that bread is history.  Except for the one mini-loaf in the freezer.  shhhh!  Don't tell anyone.  The entire family has been boycotting my food this week.  Just because I made TOFU one night.  Geezz.  You'd think I was trying to feed them arsenic or something. 

Anyway, the original bread recipe can be found here.  I, of course, made a few changes.  (my changes are in italics)

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour  *I used half whole wheat

1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 cup solid pack pumpkin puree

1 cup packed brown sugar  * I used about 1/2 cup since I was adding chocolate chips

1/2 cup buttermilk  * Skim milk with tsp of vinegar - let sit for a few minutes

1 egg  * 1 T. milled flax seed with 3 T. warm water in place of egg

2 tablespoons butter, softened  * I used applesauce instead

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips { very well rounded 1/2 cup ;) }

Directions

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2. Sift or dump the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg into a large bowl. Mix in the pumpkin, brown sugar, buttermilk, egg substitute and butter applesauce until well blended. Pour into a 9x5 inch loaf pan and smooth the top.  Or make mini loaves!

3.Bake for 1 hour in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  I think I cooked mine for about 30 minutes since I used the mini loaf pan.
This was good bread. It was pretty dense with the use of whole wheat and no egg, I'm never sure how the consistency and texture is going to be when I make so many substitutions!  I'll be so glad when my little man outgrows his egg allergy so I can bake with them again. 

My Thursday link-ups....
The Diaper Diaries, In the Kitchen Thursday with 3 Four and UnderBelly CharmsCreations by Kara

And don't forget all our Veterans!  We owe them so much!
God Bless Our Veteran's...my Daddy being one of them <3

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday- bye bye Halloween candy!


Still got this at your house?
via



Bye-Bye HaLLoWeeN Candy!!

(Mostly) Wordless Wednesday links -

 Supermom

A Beautiful Mess          Shibley Smiles          Mama to 4 Blessings          Frugality is Free

The Florida Hogans          The Life of Rylie &...Bryce          Angelica's Awesome Adventures          WW

Home Grown Families         


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Do you TOFU?

Did Mo' say Tofu?  Yes, you heard (read) correctly.  Tofu has graced the Mo'Betta household for the FIRST time.  I have never had a desire to eat tofu, nor have I ever bought it or even thought about cooking it.  Until the other day.  I read a blog post over at PreventionRD for Tofu Parmigiana...and it sounded interesting.  Good even.  So I thought I would give it a try.
 Looks pretty tasty doesn't it?  Is there tofu under all that cheese?  You bet.  I may have put a little more cheese and sauce than the recipe called for.  What can I say, I was nervous.  However, I was pleasantly surprised. 

Tofu doesn't have much flavor, so all you could really taste is the sauce and cheese.  And we luuuv cheese.  The texture was not as bad as I thought it was going to be either - it was like processed chicken.  (I know, that doesn't conjure up yummy thoughts, but it's the only way I can think to describe it)  However, the rest of the family wouldn't eat it.  I should have just hidden the tofu package and told them it was chicken.  Number One wouldn't even try it.  Number Two tried it, but said she didn't like the tofu.  Mr. Terrible Two tried it, gagged, and spit it out.  Go figure.  He does have issues with texture however.  He only eats the crispy outside of a chicken nugget, the edges of bread...I don't know, he's weird.  Hopefully it's a stage he will outgrow.  Soon!  I thought it was good.  My husband went to the gym and came home with this...
Fried chicken from the grocery store!  Because what's healthier than that for a post-workout meal.(that's sarcasm).  I wanted to kick his butt - he claimed he didn't like the taste of the tofu either.  What.ev.err. 

So, if anyone wants to come over for lunch today, I have leftovers;)  But trust me, it really was good!  The recipe can be found here.  The only changes I made were omitting the egg so Mr. T. Two could try it (wasted effort on Mommy's part) and just dipped the tofu in milk before coating with the bread crumbs.  I used seasoned Panko.  I also skipped the garlic b/c I was too lazy to chop it up.  I used Ragu Light Spaghetti sauce with no added sugar (for the diabetic hubs - also wasted effort) instead of marinara.  I ended up needing bigger than an 8" square pan, but I think it's b/c I sliced my tofu pretty thin.  Again, I was nervous about what it was going to taste like!  However, I would make it again if anyone else would eat it.  I'll be experimenting with tofu again, and just not telling anyone ;)

Does anyone else have foods they are scared to try?  We don't eat a lot of variation around here, but I'm trying to change that!

Stayed tuned b/c I'll be back to my normal self soon...I have some chocolate chip pumpkin bread to talk about :)

Today I'm linking up with...

Alicia at A Beautiful Mess for Tasty Tuesdays! 

&





Monday, November 8, 2010

Review and Free Printables!

I was given the opportunity to review this United States Trivia Pack of 50 printable games!United States Trivia Pack from Python-Printable-Games.com.  I was eager to check this out b/c my oldest child LOVES trivia.  Yes, she's my little braniac who loves to learn and I knew this would be right down her alley.  AND they just happen to be studying NC facts right now AND we will be traveling from NC to FL soon.  So...I thought it would be a fun little family thing to help pass the time on our trip if we had the trivia cards from each state we would travel through.  Well, Number One has already been studying the questions and answers.  I can already foresee that she will be quizzing us the entire trip, and relishing in the fact the she knows all the answers.  I think I better start studying! 

The trivia pack contains a page of interesting questions for all 50 states (and an answer page for each - this is a good thing - otherwise, my 9 y/o would think I'm really dumb. She's already getting to that age where she thinks adults are pretty stupid anyway.)  All you have to do is download each state and print them out.  Pretty simple.  The website description is...

"The United States Trivia Pack has 50 printable trivia games, suitable for teen-adult players.  Each game contains 15 trivia questions and answers about a state of the Union, including funny laws and customs, geographical features, state trees, flowers and slogans, tourist attractions, historical highlights, famous people, Presidents and much, much more!"

Python Printable Games also has a bunch of FREE printables!  My favorite being the 1980's Music Trivia!!  How fun is that?!  Ok, so I'm a product of the 80's and still a little stuck in the era.  I use to rock the big hair.  This would be a great time to insert a pic from high school....but I'm SO not going to do it. 

So, bottom line, we enjoyed the United States Trivia Pack and I appreciate the opportunity to do the review.  It's a great learning tool, formatted in a fun way.  If you enjoy trivia, you will like what Python Printable Games has to offer.



[Product review & giveaway disclosure: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."]

Sensitive skin?

I thought I would share something I discovered a few weeks ago.  This is not a sponsored review, just something I happened to find the other day and really like it...and since I'm such a sweetie pie I'm telling you about it while Mr. Two watches his 350,457th episode of Sesame Street. 

Mr. Two has eczema (of course he does, he has everything else!) and we have to be careful about the kinds of detergent, soaps, etc we use for him.  I always use a "free and clear" detergent and fabric softener for his clothes/towels to help prevent any type of reaction.  The only bummer about that is that you don't get that wonderful 'fresh-from-the-wash' smell.  You know, the kind that lingers and makes you want to open and shut the linen closet door several times like the Gain commercial.  Anyway, the other day I saw this -

It's a midly scented fabric softener for sensitive skin.  I have been using it for a few weeks now, and we've had no problems!  I really like the nice scent, and it leaves the clothes nice and soft.  So now, my little snuggle boy is even more cuddly in his soft, clean smelling clothes!! 
Well, they're clean for the first 5 minutes anyway! 

The bottle doesn't say it's a new product, so it may have been around for a while, but I had never seen it, but, glad I found it.  If you have sensitive skin, you can probably relate. 

Check back with me this week, b/c I plan on doing some cooking and should have some recipes to share!

I'm linking up today with...
you can link up here
(I just love this button!)



Sunday, November 7, 2010

HeLp!

I'm on the verge of tossing my lap top out the back door.  I hate/loathe/despise not being able to figure something out.  Yes, I'm a little Type A in some areas.  As you can see, I've changed my blog.  And I mean CHANGED it entirely.  And I don't like itAnd now I'm not sure how to change it back...so I've decided to leave it for the month of November....unless y'all tell me you hate it and are not going to read my dribble anymore unless I change it back.  Did I say dribble?! Ha, I meant my fabulously witty and entertaining posts regarding food, nutrition or lack there of, wonderful drivin' me bonkers kids and my crazy ass life in general.  And of course chocolate.  There's always that. 

Anyway, I can't get my picture right in my header.  I've played with and cursed at it and can't get it centered.  Anyone know how to fix this?  It's really driving me nuts.  Don't be surprised if my blog has changed again when you come back.  You will come back right?!  Right? Please? 

Have I cooked this weekend?  Not. at. all.  (I'm a loser baaby...)  I fed my kids Wendy's and hot chocolate and sent them to my in-laws.  So I've got to get busy today, cleaning, cooking, maybe some meal planning.  but i'll probably spend my time gettin' my crazy on trying to figure out this stupid computer.  I may have 2 college degrees, but they really amount to BS (haha, get it...B.S. lame) when it comes to this stuff.  Anyway, have I ranted enough? 

I really wanted to show you this.
remember this guy? the poor fella my husband said was the ugliest pumpkin at the pumpkin farm?

Well, check him out now...
Does he not make an adorable Tom Turkey?

Yep, I'm getting into the holiday spirit!!  There's a chill in the air, and all kinds of goodies out in the grocery stores.  A baker's paradise.  Like this....
 GINGER :D  (I've been looking for this, so this made me happy!)
and this!  Huge 24 oz. bags of chocolate chips, not those puny 12 oz bags! 
(Also makes me happy)

Anyone else have happy food?  What do you think of the blog's new look?  Suggestions???


Friday, November 5, 2010

FREE Download from Amazon

Just came across this from Free Stuff Times and thought I would share!

Amazon.com: The Incredible Singing Christmas Tree: VeggieTales (Veggie Tunes): MP3 Downloads

Free download of Christmas songs from VeggieTales. I downloaded mine to iTunes and will put in on a CD for the car for the kiddies!

follow up friday

I take my little man back to the doctor today for his one week follow up after his asthma flare last week.  Poor fella was in bad shape last week, but I'm happy to say he's doing much better.  The steroids made him crazy that first night, but he faired pretty well the rest of the week.  Having a 2 y/o literally running laps around the house at 2 in the morning (flipping the bedroom lights on while Daddy was sleeping) is not fun! Well, the part about turning the lights on was pretty funny.  I was up ALL night long, it seemed only fair that Dad get a little dose of Mr. Two hyperactivity.  Anyway, since my pediatrician is an hour away, the appt will pretty much take up my day.  I'll get back in time to pick the girls up from school...so no bloggy time for me :(  I've enjoyed "meeting" some new people/blogs this week with the hops and hope to have some time to really explore and catch up on everyone's posts.  I've been kind of hit and miss this week.

I don't even have a recipe to share today!  It seems most of what we ate this week was stuff I've already posted...like Chicken Soup with basil and orzo, Buffalo Chicken Pizza, spiced pumpkin oatmeal, macaroni and cheese.  However, one super simple thing I wanted to share is this
How yummy does that look?!  And it can be prepared in abt 5 minutes.  I kid you not.  And if you're fancy like me, you can serve them on these classy paper plates.  I use these
Kellogg's® Eggo® Nutri-Grain® Low Fat Whole Wheat waffles
info here 

take some blueberries (1/2 cup - I just use frozen) put them in a microwave safe bowl, pour a little syrup on top (I use sugar free usually) and nuke it until warm...takes abt a minute.  This makes a nice blueberry syrup!  Once warm, pour on top of your toasted waffles, top with walnuts (or whatever you like) and taaa-da....you have a low-fat, warm, filling breakfast!  Walnuts and blueberries are full of antioxidants, walnuts have omega 3's, if you use whole wheat waffles you are getting in some whole grains.  This is a great breakfast for kids too, on the busy gotta-hurry-up school mornings, instead of the usual cereal or granola bar.  Well, that's the usual at my house anyway.  Unless of course you have a child that will not eat fruit on her waffles.  Or another child that is allergic to eggs and nuts.  But hey, let's not complicate things.  Go have some breakfast.  I'll take some coffee with mine please.

Happy Friday!!  Hope everyone has a fab weekend!

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