Friday, September 30, 2011

Semi Homemade with Nicole Lee

Since I had such a great time imitating Rhee Drummond I figured why not try it with another celeb cook?  I needed to make treats for Madeline's Brownie Troop and of course didn't come up with a plan before I left for the store.  Ok, truth be told I forgot I had signed up for snacks this month and was at the store the day before and didn't know what to make.  Lindsey to the rescue!!! I was on the phone with my sis and she came up with this great idea!  Now please know that if Linds had made these treats they would have been more like the Lindsey Stewart Show! The cookies would be described as "These large cookies have a classic lemony flavor, a chewy texture, and glistening, crackly tops created with a double sprinkling of sanding sugar." And the frosting would have included using a double boiler and a candy thermometer.  

But Lindsey's hands aren't nearly as full as mine she can do this kind of stuff.  I on the other hand am a little more like Sandra Lee!

I like to take it easy.  So I grabbed some pre-made cookie dough

 Canned frosting
 And my Pampered Chef easy accent decorator and went to town.

 And Voila!!! There you have it.  Beautiful cookie sandwiches that look quite impressive.

Stay tuned for more of the Nicole Show! 

Another item checked off of the Pinterest list!!!

Way to go me!  I did it.  I actually followed through with putting together another one of my pins.  This one I am pretty excited about.  Although I am thinking that the hard part is all ahead of me.

I saw this idea and fell in love.  I love the thought of having a place to put all of those special papers rather than them making a home in my car, or in that special place on my kitchen counter that everything seems to migrate to.  I had been storing them in the baby book but it was getting kind of full and I really wanted something that could grow with them. I love the idea of having a place to put their school portrait and I also printed out some lined paper so we can do a handwriting sample at the beginning of the year and again at the end.
I initially found the idea on Pinterest of course but the original idea can be found here I Heart Organizing  She has all of the templates you need to put together your folders and step by step directions.
Now, the next step is doing the back work.  :( I need to round up 5x7's of their school pictures for the last couple of years and find all of those loose papers that I want to file away.
I'm not sure how much use the older grades will get, but I had to put them in there just in case.

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Nicole King Pioneer Woman

When you have a large amount of time on your hands, like I do, you find yourself doing lots of funny things.  One time my mommy and I were making dinner and we decided to pretend we were on a cooking show! It was hilarious.  We were talking about each ingredient and announcing it as we added it to the bowl.  Although the best part of it was when my brother walked in the kitchen, I don’t think he said a word.  He just looked at us, shook his head and walked out. 

Last night I did a similar thing.  I was making dinner and decided to mix things up a bit by pretending I was Rhee Drummond, The Pioneer Woman!  Yes, I did.  It started out because I was using my Pioneer Woman Cook Book and my beautiful cast iron dutch oven.  (both gifts from my dear friend Kim) So as I was making my Perfect Pot Roast I documented each step in photographs.  Let me say it was quite fun.  And it also helped me keep my kitchen clean as I went.  J Who would want to have a messy kitchen in the background of their beautiful cooking photos?! Not me!

So on to the show!

Step one: Gather necessary tools

Step two:  Take 6-8 carrots, wash thoroughly but do not peel.  Chop into two inch pieces.  With about two table spoons of oil heated in your dutch oven add the carrots browning for about one minute each side.  This is not intended to cook the carrots all the way but just to give them a nice brown color.  Remove carrots.

Step three:  Peel onions lengthwise and cut in half.  Add to the same pot and brown each side for about one minute. 

Step four:  Add more oil to the pan and return to a high heat.  Take your roast and sprinkle with kosher salt on all sides.  Once the oil is hot place the roast in the oil and allow to brown on each side. 

Step five:  Next we will return the vegetables into the pot with the roast.  Pour enough beef stock into dutch oven to cover half of the roast.   Now put it in the oven for approximately 2 hours.  I did 2.5 and I think it was just a little too long. 

Step six:  GRAVY!!!!  I have not quite perfected my gravy skills and it is a very sad thing.  So for that reason I will not go into the directions.  As I type I realize I should have made the gravy in the dutch oven to make sure to get all of the deliciousness but I was using it to keep the roast warm.  Next time I will be one step closer to gravy perfection.

Step seven:  And lastly potatoes.  Wash, peel and chop the potatoes.  Boil until tender and then mash them in the mixer.  I added lots of half and half and butter because it was Matt’s birthday.

And what birthday meal is complete with out monster cookies? 

Hahaha isn't Red hilarious on this M&M package?  I'm not sure he is as ready for fall as I am.  :)

As I was making this dinner things kept reminding me of the people I miss.  The cook book and dutch oven both reminded me of Kim.  These were both gifts from her.  And they also reminded me of my sis in law Ashley because I gave both of them to her as gifts!  I love seeing things in my daily life that make me thing of these friends and family.   The other day I posted a similar thing about how different things were reminding me of my friends back home.  I was having a pity party for myself when I realized that yes I do miss my friends and family but how awesome is to have these daily reminders of the people that I love.  So, all that to say, if you want me to think of you and make me happy maybe you should send me a present! Hahahaha kidding.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

River Walkin!

The weather has been so nice around here.  It's been in the 80's most days.  But I think this week we are going to actually see the fall weather.  We sure enjoyed the warm temperatures and blue skies but I am always ready for the season to change. 
In the beautiful city of Pullman we found a little bridge.  Jude wanted to cross the bridge so one day after school he and I went exploring to check it out.   
Here is Jude crossing the bridge.  At the end you can kind of see a cute little waterfall-rock feature.  

Jude climbing out on rocks like his father!  I am suddenly having flashbacks to our road trip. :)

Here is my poor attempt at taking pictures of the fish and crawdads in the water. 

Matt is finally here for good!  We are so happy to finally have our family all together.  This will however be an interesting month.  Matt will be working from home until November when he starts the project over here.  
Hopefully we can set up a nice home office area so he can actually get some work done.  I am going to try my hardest not to chat his ear off every second.  Which will not be easy since he is the only adult I have to talk to around here.  :) 
Madels has joined girl scouts and is a brownie.  She goes every other Thursday after school and so far is really enjoying it.  The kids continue to do lots of bike riding and running back and forth between friends houses, and riding their bikes down the path in our neighborhood.  

Other than that, that is about it.  I am however starting to wonder if we have actually moved to Chicago.  My goodness it is windy here! I keep getting warnings from people I meet about how cold it gets here.  I can't quite picture it yet.  I am so used to my rainy winters in Oregon it should be interesting to experience something new.  Bring on the long johns and the uggs! 

I am planning on doing a little tour of our house one of these days but I keep thinking I will wait until I have everything in order and up on the walls.  I guess that will probably end up being never so I may just bite the bullet and do it tomorrow.  

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

4 W's and 1 L

Pinterest, sweet pin-ter-est! So knowing, so consuming, so love...ed.
Five Coly bucks to the person who can identify the inspiration of this poem! And believe me you want five Coly bucks. :)
Pinterest. If you haven't been taken over by this site, well I am sorry.  Check it out.  It's amazing.
It has been the filler of my time for the last couple of days.  My mommy was here over the weekend and we spent a beautiful amount of time scouring this site.  Coming up with an amazing amount of ideas for our houses, lots of fun things to dream about, and some delish recipes to try out!
The best part of the weekend was that we actually followed through with a few of the ideas.  And in no particular order I present to you.........

Special dates art

The original inspiration came from this blog.  I pretty much followed her directions except rather than cutting out the numbers on the cricut I just printed straight onto the paper.  And in looking at the picture I am noticing that I should probably move the paper down in the frame just a touch to center it.  Other than that I LOVE it!  Mom and I decided to use yellow in the living room and I thought this would be a great start.  

Laundry Soap container

I found this on pinterest and picked a different font. I feel like mine is way cuter.  See here
I used my cricut and some black vinyl.  Font is called Channel and Modern. no 20.
Container is from walmart.

Behind door number 3 we have the lovely 
Snicker-doodle Cupcakes

The original recipe for this was for a cake but we decided to do cupcakes.  I think because we did cupcakes rather than a layered cake we had a ridiculous amount of frosting left over.  Not a problem I mind having.  Theses cupcakes are incredible.  You must make them, or hurry up and come to my house, there are about one dozen left. (yes, I ate one since this picture was taken) 

Next I present something that looks disgusting but tasted wonderful.
Crock pot Salsa Chicken

I totally should have taken a picture when it was pretty because by looking at this picture no one in their right mind would want to make this. But it was soooo good and sooo easy.  You can check it out here.
We ate it with noodles, and I also had it on a tortilla.  Both were great.

And now for the L.

This was supposed to change my life.  The idea is to modpodge a regular photo onto a canvas and viola you have an inexpensive canvas to hang around your house.  Well guess what?  The beauty cost about $3 and that is about what it looks like.  I think if I had taken the time to do it properly it would have been better but really, who wants to do that.  The problem was that the photo that I had to use was weird and had white down either side.  I thought that I could fix that by cutting out a cute frame in black vinyl and cover it up.  Well it totally didn't work.  It's crooked, off center and over all just looks lame.  Good thing the kiddos in the picture are cute.  Cause that's about it.

Well I have to say 4 out of 5 isn't too bad.  I had lots of fun with my momma and am thankful to have gotten a few things done around here.  

I had such a wonderful time this weekend with my mom.  I am so thankful to her for taking the time to come over here and see our place.  We did some shopping, some pinning (obviously) baking, and a little resting.  :) 
I am already looking forward to her next visit in October and my sis is coming the week after.  Yippee! It was so fun showing her around our town and having her meet our great neighbors. Thanks Mom! I love you.

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Weekend Update.

 So our weekend was quite fun.  Thursday Night I got a call from Matt, he had been planning on heading over here for the weekend but ended up with tickets to the beaver game Saturday afternoon and wanted to know if the kids and I would like to come! Yes! of course we did.  I also knew that my family had planned a get together for Sunday night with the Stutzman fam and I wasn't about to miss out on an opportunity to hang out with the cousins. So friday afternoon we loaded up the ol' king sled and hit the road.  The kids were great and the driving was easy.  We got to my parents shortly after 1130 and had a nice time catching up a bit and then hit the sack.
We also indulged in a bit of this deliciousness before we went to bed. yummmmmm

This cheese is delicious! They make it here in Pullman at WSU!!!  If you come here I will get you some.  

Jude was quite the helper at Papa and Grammy's this weekend.  I think the lawn looks better when Papa has help.

Saturday afternoon Matt, Dad, Jude and I went to the football game.  It was so hot, but we had a lot of fun.  And Jude did really well.  It probably helped that we kept buying him treats to keep him hydrated and happy! 
On our long hot walk to into the football game.
I think it was almost 640 degrees at the game.  
Jude and Dad at the football game. This was Jude's first beaver football game.  He did great! 
The Stutzman boys!
We had a great evening having a weeny roast and spending time with the cousins.
Ed and Kim we missed ya!
My momma and my favorite little lady, Anna!!

It was a perfect evening to be outside with family 
As always the kids had a wonderful time running around and playing together.
There was a lot of football talk at this table. :)

The kids love wearing papas t-shirts to sleep in.  Jude got to bring his home and has slept in it every night since we got home.

Mister helping uncle A paint fence.  He lasted about  10 minutes :)
Monday morning came around and my plan was to leave bright and early.  Well, strange enough that didn't happen.  Linds and I just had to get a trip to Target in. (did I mention that the closest Target is 1.5 hours away from me????) And by the time I had given 700 hugs and made sure I had all of my stuff it was 1ish.  We headed up to our house in Salem to pick up some things we hadn't packed.  We were finally on the road for real around 4.  With all of our stops for eating and gas we weren't home until 1230.  Yikes. That drive home was not fun!! And getting up for school the next morning was also, not fun!!

Since we have been home it has been good.  I have TV now so I am not so bored at night after the kids go to bed.  I also went for a little jog the other night while the kids were at AWANA.  It was nice to be able to do that since I can't really do that with the kids.  

What a lovely path for a jog.

This weekend is also going to be great! My mommy is flying in  tomorrow afternoon and I can't wait!  We have no plans.  Should be the perfect weekend.