Jan 30, 2012

Magic Cookie Bars

I love this recipe, it is incredibly easy and I get tons and tons of compliments whenever I make it. Plus, it requires no mixing or anything! 

Magic Cookie Bars
1/2 C Butter or Margarine
1 1/2 C Graham Cracker crumbs
1 (14 oz can) sweetened condensed milk
1 C Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 1/3 C flaked coconut
1 C chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In 13X9 " pan melt margarine in oven. Sprinkle crumbs over margarine. Pour Condensed milk evenly over crumbs. Sprinkle with chips, then coconut, then nuts. Bake 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool, then cut into bars. 

There are also a lot of variations you can do with this recipe, you can just go with what you have on hand. 

Substitutes for Graham Cracker Crumbs: 
Vanilla Wafers
Chocolate Wafer Cookies
Ginger Snaps
Quick-cooking Oats

Substitute for Chocolate chips, or add with chips:
Peanut butter chips
Butterscotch chips
Mini marshmallows

Nuts you can use: 

Flavor Variations: 
Mint: combine 1/2 tsp peppermint extract and 4 drops green food coloring to condensed milk

Peanut butter: combine 1/3 C peanut butter with condensed milk

Jan 24, 2012

Homemade Beef Taquitos

I really like taquitos, they are so good. I sometimes buy the microwave kind and eat like twenty of them, and then feel sick and want to die. And then I do it again the next day until the box is gone and then vow not to buy them again for a while. 
So when one of my favorite blogs, Little Miss Momma posted a recipe for homemade beef taquitos I knew I would be making them. I was finally able to make them the other night, and they were AMAZING! And honestly super duper simple to make. Except you do have to pan fry them, which I hate frying things cause I always burn myself, but some of my favorite recipes involve frying things, so I do it a lot. 

Mmm... I want to make more now. They are so crispy and awesome. 

Jeremy decided to sneak Analiese in one of the pics too, and it was too cute not to post. 

So anyway if you want to make yourself some taquitos and not the microwavey kind (even though they are good too, but these are way better) head here to Little Miss Momma for the recipe and tutorial. 

Jan 23, 2012

Chevron Canvas

So awhile back I got this really super cute vinyl lettering at the mall for Analiese's room. I bought it when I was only like 20 something weeks prego and have been waiting forever to put it up. But when we moved into our town-home at the end of October I didn't want to put it on the wall, because we are renting the place and I didn't want to put up the vinyl and then have to take it down in a year or so and throw it away when we move, I wanted to be able to keep it. So I hunted around my house for something that I could put the vinyl on and I found this canvas that I had started an oil painting on and never finished. I painted over it with pink (it takes like five coats to cover up oil paint apparently!). But it was still missing something, so I decided it needed some chevron stripes. I had never done chevron stripes, but it looked easy enough. And it was easy, it freaking just took forever! Seriously I was marking lines for like an hour and a half! The painting the stripes part went by really fast after I used painting tape and stuff. 
The vinyl part also took a lot longer than anticipated. I have plenty of vinyl in my house, I am no amateur at putting it up. But this vinyl totally sucked! It would not come off the paper and transfer over. I was peeling transfer paper off the vinyl for a long time, but eventually it all came off and I think it turned out pretty well... And if you are looking to buy vinyl you should go HERE, I bought a ton of vinyl from them a while back and it is great and fairly priced. I know better now than to buy it at that stupid store in the mall! 

Right now it is sitting on Analiese's dresser. I just bought some stuff so it can hang on the wall, but I want my husband to move some furniture around in the room and then I will hang the canvas over the dresser. But he is taking too long to move stuff, and I am impatient, so I didn't want to wait. 

I have been meaning to do a post on the pinwheels I made, but I haven't gotten around to it, I will though... 
P.s. Don't you love my Belle snow globe. Its mine, but I am handing it down to my Analiese now. My daddy bought it for me, its so cute and intricate. Belle is my favorite princess, and hopefully Analiese will appreciate all the Belle stuff I am handing down to her. She currently has the snow globe, a barbie, a doll, another doll, and a blanket. You better believe she will be Belle for Halloween one year!

Isn't this super cute? My auntie made it for me! It looks like a pretty easy project, you just need some vinyl, paint and blocks. She also used some sparkly paint too over the solid paint color. I am totally loving it.

Jan 19, 2012

Meal Ideas and recipes for Menu Planning

Before I go grocery shopping I always plan about six meals to make over the next two weeks for dinners. But sometimes it is hard to remember what meals I like to make. So I created a list of all my favorite recipes and meals to make so that I can quickly plan menus. I always am on the look out for new recipes though, so I just add them to my list when I find them. 
Here is my big ol' list of meals. Some of them are really simple, some require more time. But I like to have a good mix of simple meals to make on the fly and other meals that when I have more time I can make and have fun with. Most of them have links you can click on for the recipe. 

Bahama Mama's Tortilla Soup (Rumbi Grill dish copycat)

Chicken and Artichoke Pasta (Johnny Carino's Dish copycat)

Homemade Pizza or Homemade Pizza Rolls

Pulled Pork Burritos  (Cafe Rio copycat)

I usually just do regular bacon lettuce and tomato cause for me its a quick meal, but I found a recipe that looks really good, but I haven't tried it yet. 

Teriyaki Burgers/Teriyaki Chicken Sandwiches 
(sorry no link, but I just marinate the meat in teriyaki sauce all day, then grill meat and pineapple, put on bun with mayo and tomato and cheese)

French Dip Sandwiches

CrockPot Teriyaki Chicken (I use this for rice bowls)

The following meals are also meals I make, but the links they lead to I have not tried those exact recipes, but I have yet to upload my own recipes for these or else my recipes are nothing special (like my Spaghetti, its noodles, hamburger and a jar of prego) so its not worth posting the recipe for. So I have searched the web and found some awesome looking recipes that look super yummy and good, and I may just have to try them out to jazz up my regular dishes sometimes. But as I said, I haven't tried the recipes myself so can't promise anything...

Chili Dogs or Hot Dogs

 Breakfast foods: Pancakes, Waffles, French Toast w/ Bacon or sausage
{Cinnamon Roll Pancakes via Recipe Girl}
Oh and click on the french toast link-- it has one of my favorite restaurants recipes for french toast and caramel syrup, I have gotta try the recipe}

Tacos or THIS or THIS

Jan 3, 2012

A-Cakes- pictures and poop stories

Thats what her daddy calls her... A-Cakes. 

Here is my angel! We are having so much fun with her. She was the best Christmas present ever, even if she does have colic and keeps us up til around 3 in the morning every single night. The other night I went to bed at quarter to six, that is A.M. people! She also loves to play this game called, I am fast asleep and the moment you put me in my cradle I wake up and am wide awake! Yeah not so fun at 2 a.m.    But she is so smiley and loves to cuddle with us which makes up for the fact that in the last 3 days she has had 6 blow outs in her diaper. I also think she is going to start liking all her toys soon. She has been a bit too small to enjoy them, but the other day she batted at the rattle on her bouncer and her eyes got sooo big! It was the cutest thing I tell ya. 

So here are some pictures of my tiny little girl. 

Previous pics courtesy of Samantha Stephenson Photography

Daddy was tired. 

So as I mentioned in a previous post, we had my sister-in-law, Samantha come over and take some pictures of Analiese. I wanted some of her naked, and so Sam told me to take all her clothes off except her diaper a half hour before she came to take the pics so that there would be no lines or anything from the clothes on her skin. So we got all the props and stuff set up and I took off her diaper right before the picture was going to be taken and seriously it was off for two seconds when I hear this big fart noise and look down and there is poop all over me! My baby girl pooped all over my pants. It was lovely I tell ya. So I handed her off to her daddy to manage while I ran out to get the poop off of me, while I was gone she managed to poop even more on the carpet and a blanket, all in the short amount of time it took for daddy to grab the diaper and put it on her. We waited for her to stop pooping, I changed and then we got her all set up on her blankets and she looked so cute, when she decided to pee all over the blanket we had her propped up on, she did that twice during the naked pictures, and she was wide awake and crying the whole time too during them. So we gave up and I put the clothes on her that I had laid out for later photos and we took those pics. Samantha came over a few days later to re-take the naked pics at a time when Analiese was in a better mood. But this time I kept the diaper on, seeing her cute bottom in pictures was not worth the mess! 

Jan 2, 2012

Party Meatballs

So I make these meatballs, and they are the best meatballs in the world! Everytime I make them someone asks for the recipe. I just gave my mom the recipe and she made them for a large gathering and all her neighbors asked for the recipe too. It seriously is so easy. It requires three ingredients: 

1 bag of the Costco meatballs
1 jar grape jelly
1 bottle of Heinz Chile Sauce 

Pour it all in your sauce pan or crockpot and cook until grape jelly is a liquid and meatballs are warmed through. 

I usually never make this recipe in such big quantities, so you can adjust it to make it smaller however you want. I honestly never measure or anything, I just add enough stuff to make it saucy and not dry. Just do more grape jelly than chile sauce and you will be fine. 

Sorry I made these the other day but forgot to take a picture... 

Tile Present

So when you have a baby it is really easy to make homemade gifts for your mom and mother-in law y. Grandma's eat pics of their one and only grand-baby up! 
So here is what I made them. 

It was super easy. I had my wonderful sister in-law come take some pics since she is a great photographer. I had to develop the pics in record time because we took the pics the week of Christmas. So I just slapped some mod-podge over the square foot tile, and then added some scrapbook paper, waited for that to dry, more mod-podge then added the picture and then more mod-podge over that to seal it. Then you just add a bit of glue gun to hold the ribbon in place. I bought the stands for the tile at Hobby Lobby for like three dollars. You could do whatever size of tile and pic you wanted, my aunt made some of her kids for their family on smaller square and rectangular tiles and they turned out super cute. Plus the dollar store usually sells smaller stands that you could use for smaller tiles too. 

My mom and mom-in-law loved them. Analiese is the only grandbaby on both sides for right now, so she is spoiled and loved by her grandmas.