Thursday, February 26, 2009

Hello Kitchen, I've Missed You...

For the past few weeks (possibly, months), I have not been doing much cooking--which is truly one of my favorite things to do. My sweet husband has either been whipping something up, or more often going to retrieve take-out. After an overdose of Chinese last weekend and some way-to-greasy Captain D's, I decided to head back into the kitchen. I started digging through my Everday Food magazines and have whipped up three pretty yummy meals this week that were quick and super easy.

I had hoped this was going to be a great post where you could click on the link to each recipe, but it seems Martha has already pulled some of these off of her website. However, if you get a chance to try to Southern Pulled-Pork Sandwiches, they are really yummy. Even though there aren't links to the others, I still wanted to pat myself on the here was this week's menu...

Tuesday night we had:
-Quick Crispy Chicken
-Snow Peas w/Dill Butter
-Brown-Sugar Glazed Carrots

Wednesday night we had:
-Spinach & Brie Chicken w/Tomato Orzo
-Sauteed Cabbage and Onions (no real recipe-just sliced up a small green cabbage and a small sweet onion, sauteed with butter over low til cooked through)

and last night we had:
-Southern Pulled-Pork Sandwiches (rather than following the recipe exactly, I used all the ingredients, but then I threw it all in the slow cooker on low for 8 hours)
-Cucumber & Sweet Onion Salad
Boiled Potatoes (again--no real recipe, just chopped up some Yukon gold potatoes, boiled, drained and tossed with butter and fresh parsley--and as always, salt and pepper to taste!)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Favorite Things Friday - Method Air Fresheners

I'm a big fan of Method cleaning products, but I also love their air fresheners. I use the plug in ones and the discs. It took me a long time standing in the aisle at Target to decide which scent I wanted for my home, but I finally settled on Vanilla-Apple (the same as my sister!). Every person who has come in my house since I started using these has commented on how good my house smells. I use two of the plug ins in the great room area and some of the discs in certain rooms--Clinton's in particular. Occasionally, I get a candle for my kitchen as well--although, I'm in need of one of those at the moment.

If you're looking for the perfect scent for your home, check out these...they're yummy!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

See What Clinton Did In School Today

One of my favorite things about Clinton being in preschool, besides his excitement about going, are all the art projects he brings home. However, I found myself trying to figure out what to do with them all. My refrigerator was getting quickly overrun with the projects, and it wasn't the best place to display them. They were often flying off as I opened the fridge door or getting covered up with an invitation or the latest grocery list. So, mother and dad helped me make these display boards at Christmas.

I had originally planned on them being magnetic boards, but I missed the primer step and the boards absorbed all the magnetic paint, so now they're bulletin boards. I started with ceiling tiles--a whopping 37 cents each at Lowe's. Then Mother cut small, thin boards to frame them out with. Her and dad framed them using little nails and wood glue. Then mother painted them black. I bought antiqued brass furniture nails to use as my "tacks". They're much longer, so they don't pop out when a little hand tries to pull the artwork down. My fear was that tacks would end up on the floor and then in someone's foot...most likely mine.

I love seeing Clinton's art as I'm washing dishes or walking down the hall. He also loves seeing them and tells me "Cool! Cool!" (School! School!) when he sees them.

Rodney and I really love having things around our house that remind us of our family, and this is just one more thing we enjoy having around us everyday.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Can I Get A Choo-Choo?

For Clinton's birthday I did not throw a Martha-style party. There were no party plates, no party favors, no cute invitations and sadly no party games. But for good reason....this Martha wannabe is way prego and too tired to throw a party of such grandiose for a child who's not even going to remember it (much like the big, very expensive bash we threw last year). However, I did manage to come up with three things my little birthday boy boons (balloons), a train table ( and a choo-choo cake.

Martha, I searched and searched your site for your train cake, but to no avail. So, I had to scour the internet looking for another source. There I found this video demonstration that allowed me to make a cake my little boy so desperately loved and wanted to play with.

How to make a train cake

When Clinton awoke from his nap, I had cut and iced all the train cars and the engine. He kept looking at the brightly colored blocks saying, "Ummm, gool." (Ummm, good.) As I began to assemble the train onto the tracks and adding the candy details Clinton began to realize what all the goodness really was. His eyes got really big as he said, "OH....shoo-choo! (choo-choo)" He wasn't getting more than six inches away from it after that!

I did a blue engine is honor of Thomas, our favorite little engine, and used other bright colors to go along with it. This required a LOT of food coloring which I kept far from my toddler's reach, remembering what happened to us at our Halloween party. I made sure to use all candies that Clinton could eat which included Gummy Savers (instead of Lifesavers), Kisses, gummy bears, Raisenets, strawberry Twizzlers, and Oreos. I also used a Rolo and a Miniature Peanut Butter Cup for the smoke stack. Just as we were getting ready for the cake, Rodney started clearing gifts from the table and dropped Clinton's new scooter on it. YES, ON MY CAKE. However, it was just the last car and I did already have me and my pregnancy hormones kept our cool and moved on. We sang happy birthday and Clinton enjoyed a piece of his Strawberry flavored engine (the cars were vanilla). I had also made a chocolate cake but ended up not needing it! Note to self, 12 people typically do not eat three cakes!

If you have any cool pics of b-day cakes you've done, post a link in my comments so I can see! I now have a GREAT appreciation for cake decorating skills!

If you care to read more about what Clinton's day was like and haven't already, check it out here.