Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Christmas Decorating Ideas!

With Christmas decorating coming in full force, I wanted to share a few neat ideas I've found to make your home gorgeous for the holidays!

Pine Cone Garland - Tutorial

I've been saving up to get a REALLY nice advent calendar and I think I've found one!  Now just to choose...

Star Garland Advent Calendar • Pottery Barn

I'm love these canvas deer and with Craft Warehouse having 75% off all canvases... I've got a project over the weekend! - Tutorial

I also picked up one of these lanterns to go with my "Dashing Through the Snow" Display, I'm so excited to set it up with my chalkboard and other goodies!

Have a great Thanksgiving.  Do a lot of eating, shopping and decorating!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Mexico Trip 2.0

I forgot to post the rest of the pictures from Mexico and since I've been down with the flu I'll do a little reminiscing.

Monday, November 24, 2014

We Found Dasher and Prancer!

The weekend we went to look at the Festival of Trees which is 30 beautifully decorated Christmas trees with all sorts of themes.  Lucky for Baby J they also had real live reindeer!!!

I've never seen her squeal so much in excitement.

We are still battling these teeth coming in and having a heck of a time sleeping.  I felt so sorry for my husband last night.  He was holding a screaming baby while his wife was throwing up every 15 minutes.  Have no idea what that was all about but hopefully things will be better from here on out!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Chicken Pesto Lasagna Rollups Recipe

I found this recipe on Pinterest but I took some short cuts to make it easy.  After all, moms ain't got time for that!

  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups shredded chicken breast (I grabbed a Rotisserie chicken)
  • 2 (15-ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup basil pesto (grabbed a container at Safeway)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 2 cups marinara sauce, divided (grabbed a jar of Marinara)
  • Grated Parmesan, for serving
  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9×13 baking dish or coat with nonstick spray.
  • In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook lasagna according to package instructions; drain well.
  • To make the béchamel, melt the butter in a large saucepan. Whisk in the flour until lightly browned, about 1-2 minutes. Gradually whisk in the milk and cook, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 3-4 minutes; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Spread 1/2 cup béchamel in the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
  • In a large bowl, combine the chicken, ricotta, pesto, 1 cup mozzarella, salt and pepper, to taste. Lay the noodles flat and spread 1/3 cup ricotta mixture evenly along each noodle. Roll up and place seam side down in the baking dish; repeat with remaining noodles and filling. Top with remaining béchamel and 1 cup marinara and sprinkle with mozzarella.
  • Place into oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until lasagna rolls are heated through and the cheese is beginning to brown.
  • Serve immediately on a bed of marinara and garnished with Parmesan, if desired.

It was so quick and easy.  Great for company since its a beautiful presentation.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Terrible Two's at 16 Months

Okay not really but when your baby girl is getting FIVE teeth in at ONE time including 3 molars and 2 I-teeth... Oy Vay.  I actually sent a text to my husband last night that said if this is what the terrible two's look like, I'm taking permanent actions to NEVER having another kid. I was so exhausted I went to bed at 8:30... and it felt GOOD. Nothing made her happy... well other then doing death defying circus acts just to see me come running... like going down her slide BACKWARDS or standing up on the top step and "balancing" (people she's 16 months, she doesn't HAVE any balance).  Or how about getting in the refrigerator and pulling out a glass jar, dropping it, shattering and spraying glass and dijon mustard EVERYWHERE.  So much for the finer things in life....Or the yogurt she asked for and then demanded to feed herself... but she didn't want to EAT it, no she wanted to paint the cabinets with flings of strawberry yogurt, THAT was way more fun.

Baby J going down BACKWARDS!
I really chalked this behavior up to being extremely tired from the previous week of sleepless nights.  She went to bed early and slept through the night for the first time since we got back from vacation. I just might keep her.

Monday, November 17, 2014

DIY Gift Idea and Dessert!

I can't wait to decorate for the holidays... a new Hobby Lobby store opened in our town and I think it's going to become my new best friend!

This weekend I finally finished a project for my husband.  He wanted coaster's for his new office. We picked out some coordinating paper and got some basic white tiles at the Home Depot store for about 29 cents.  Cut the paper in a 4x4 size and stick them on with Modge Podge, give it two good coats and then finish it with a resin coating so its completely heat and water proof, not to mention a beautiful glass finish.  I just LOVE how they turned out.

I also tried out a new recipe that turned out amazing!  White Chocolate Cranberry and Pear Crostata.  So easy and delicious.

Get a pie crust from the store and lay it out.  Sprinkle 1.5 cups of white chocolate chips in the center.  In a bowl mix 2 cups of dried cranberries, 4 pears peeled and sliced, 1/2 cup of flour, 1/2 cup of sugar and a pinch of salt. Pile the mixture in the middle of the pie dough. Fold up the edges and brush with melted butter.  Pop it in a 400 degree oven for 30-40 minutes, until its nice golden brown.  Let it cool and serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

Hope you all have a fantastic week!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Potato Soup Sunday - Recipe

Made the MOST AMAZING soup last night.  Potato Soup.  It was easy, quick and so delicious that I'm hoping my husband will forget his lunch today so I get more of it!

  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 cups whole milk, or more, as needed
  • 5 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add bacon and cook until brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; set aside.
  • Melt butter in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Whisk in flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in potatoes and green onions.
  • Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes. Stir in cheese, sour cream, salt and pepper, to taste. If the soup is too thick, add more milk as needed until desired consistency is reached.
  • Serve immediately, garnished with green onion, cheese and bacon, if desired.

The rest of the weekend was spent doing laundry and catching up from our trip.  Everyone is STILL sick so we spent our time cuddling and eating good foods and of course watching football.

Have a great Monday!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Don't Drink The Water

Well we are back from our vacation to Puerto Vallarta.  We spent a lovely week in a villa on the beach.  Unfortunately my baby got sick (pretty sure it was from the ice we used on the last day) and I was up at 4am this morning with her in the shower and doing loads of laundry.  That was the SECOND time in 12 hours I had to do laundry.  Poor baby.

Grandpa was a great jungle gym in the airport

The resident dog

The resident iguana

We went to La Palapa restaurant for beach time.  Nice spot in the shade to play in the sand and a waiter brings you cocktails and cervezas.  Nothing better.

 Selfies when we were bored on the patio waiting for breakfast

Our pool was so refreshing, every afternoon we would all jump in when we got back from sight seeing.

She LOVED all of the food and ate everything we did, even octopus!  We had an amazing chef at the villa so we ate dinner there every night.  She had a 4 month old girl so Lisa and I left a lot of clothes and shoes with her. 

After this trip to El Eden and beautiful river, we stopped for some food and my husband got a special treat from the owner for some "special" hot sauce.  I just love these pictures.

More pictures coming later.  I have a shit storm literally to handle...