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The Sweet Smell Of Fall

5 Oct

Fall is here & I loooove it! The next few months are my favorite time of the year. The older I get, the more excited I am to get into the fall/winter spirit. I’m already so anxious for Christmas to get here that I can hardly stand it. I’m jumping ahead of myself…. fall. Leaves changing, chilly/crisp weather, & the smell of all kinds of seasonal goodies baking in the oven. I love to bake! I like to bake more than I like to cook. I can remember tackling the hardest baking projects as a young teenager. My mom is such a great cook, but doesn’t bake. She doesn’t work well with precise cooking (just try asking her for a recipe… “a little bit of this, a lot of that, taste, add….” She eye balls everything!). So needless to say, she was always impressed when I would successfully bake pies from scratch… from pie crust to filling. It’s been a while since I’ve baked a homemade apple pie. I try to keep it a fall tradition. So to get into the spirit…..

As the pie was cooking, Brian looked at me & said, “if only you could take a picture of the smell!” As good as it looks on the screen, the best part was the smell that filled my house. No Yankee Candle needed¬† ūüôā

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Banana Pudding & Pointless Epiphanies??

4 Jul

Made a trip out to Kristin & Emil’s last night for dessert. Keely & I made homemade banana pudding to take over. scrumptious. There’s just nothing like banana pudding right out of the oven… I don’t care how hot it is outside!

We took over our gift for their baby that is soon to arrive. I still can’t believe they were able to resist the temptation to find out the sex of the baby. We are all excited to find out what it will be¬† ūüôā¬† We don’t get to see Kristin & Emil too often these days, but that’s life I guess. I’m really excited for them to be welcoming¬†their first¬†baby into their family. I mean… geez… they’ve only been together for like a century now.

I was watching Rachel Ray this morning as I played with the kids in the living room floor, & she just kept talking about how when she is not “on stage”, she rarely gets out of her pajamas & downright refuses to wear make-up around the house. I smiled. Glad I’m not the only bum on the planet. Don’t get it twisted… I like to get dolled up & I’m pretty dang good at it, but man do I love my sweatpants & T-shirts. I’m all about comfort. I find it hard to understand why women waste precious hours of their day applying make-up & wearing uncomfortable clothes… just to raise kids… that trust me…¬†think you’re the bee’s knees¬†either way. But I guess many people have the same opinion of me & the time I spend blogging. Which is far & few between lately¬† ūüė¶¬† I should work on that.

A Kid Friendly Meal That The Whole Family Will Enjoy!

27 Mar

One of my favorite things about having a family is having people around to eat my food. I love to cook… & when it comes to my kitchen, there isn’t a microwave in use.

I thought I would share with the world one of my easier meals that Keely looooves to eat & to help out with. It’s a homemade version of the stuff kids love, but easy enough so that anyone can master it… with the help of the kids of course.

On the menu:

*Breaded Chicken Tenders

*Macaroni && Cheese

*Butter Beans (although most of the time I do broccoli… depending on what looks good &¬†fresh at the grocery store or farmers market)

**NOTE** I hardly ever use measurements, I just “eyeball it” as my mother would say.

Chicken Tenders – I use 1 or 2 packs of boneless skinless chicken tenders, but you can adjust that to fit your family. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Melt about 2 Tbl. butter in a bowl. Finely crush 1 -2 sleeves of Ritz crackers into a separate bowl (Keely loves to help with this part). Add salt, pepper, & I add about a tsp or so of Italian seasoning, to taste. Dip each chicken strip in butter & then coat with ritz. Place in a casserole dish. Cook for about 30-35 min or until chicken is cooked through.

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Macaroni & Cheese – Boil desired amount of macaroni noodles ( I couldn’t tell you how much. That’s something that I just eyeball). I like to use different pastas with fun shapes & fun colors for Keely. Grate sharp cheddar cheese into a bowl (you can use the pre-shredded bagged cheese, but I like to grate my own fresh). Once the macaroni is finished boiling, add cheese, butter, milk, salt & pepper to drained noodles (none of which I measure. I just add a little & taste).

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Butter Beans – Pour desired amount of butter beans into a pressure cooker. Add a small chunk of ham chips (I’m sure some of you are reading that like, huh?… it’s in your grocery store in the same section you find the dried pork products. don’t worry, you don’t eat this, but it gives vegetables a great flavor). Cover beans about an inch over with water. Tighten lid & cook on high until you hear the little rocker start to whistle. Cut heat back to med-high & cook for 20 min for frozen vegetables.

…. & viola!!

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A Breath Of Fresh Air

12 Mar

Today has been such a pleasant day¬† ūüôā¬† Seems pretty content for the Thompson family on this lovely¬†March afternoon.

Though I’m not looking forward to another NC summer, I am soaking up the Spring fever *sigh*.

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¬†Keely && I had a yummy lunch together. I determined today that she is officially old enough to start having little tea parties with. Now I just have to go out & find us a couple of big hats to wear¬† ūüėȬ†¬†¬†¬†

food for thought

11 Mar

I absolutely love that Tabitha shares recipes on her blog for everyone to enjoy… or at least the rest of us overly domesticated women. I thought I was domesticated until I met Tabitha! I am¬†a long way away from knitting goodies &¬†making my own baby food. but her grandmothers homemade granola recipe is right up my alley! Yummy. So I decided that since I enjoy reading & trying her recipes, I would do the same & maybe someone will enjoy some of the recipes that our family savors.

Here is one of our most favorites….

Spinach Salad w/ homemade vinegarette dressing:

* 1/3 cup apple cidar vinegar

* 1/4 cup sugar

* tbl. onion powder

* tbl. poppy seeds

* tsp. salt

* tsp. ground mustard

* 1 cup salad oil

Mix all of the ingredients except for the salad oil in a blender. Once that is mixed, while blender is running, slowly pour in the salad oil. Serve over a bed of spinach or mixed greens, add desired amount of sunflower seeds, mix, & enjoy!