Monday, December 26, 2016

Ranch Potatoes (Crock Pot)

I had a discussion with one of hubby's cousins last night (which was SO nice! Miss her!)

She is one of those types that would take care of everyone and everything on the planet if she had the means. Genuine heart.

She has 3 (wonderful!) kids as well as two dogs at home.

Then she heard of this other little doggy down at the pound who needed love. She went down to look and the poor thing had pulled out all of its own hair! It was a mix of unhappiness and food allergies.

Cousin brought her hubby and their youngest down to look at the dog and they were like "seriously? this must be a joke".
A joke it was not! She brought her home and worked her magic!

A couple of months later, and you would never have known that this pup had a sad beginning. She is thriving and loving life with her new "siblings".

Thank you cousin, the world needs more people like you!

6 Bacon strips (chopped)
2 ½ Lbs small red potatoes (cubed)
8 oz cream cheese (softened)
10 ¾ oz cream of potato soup
¼ Cup milk
1 Envelope ranch dressing mix
3 Tbsp thinly sliced green onions

1. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crisp.
2. Remove and drain, reserving 1 Tbsp drippings
3. Place potatoes in slow cooker
4. In a bowl, beat cream cheese, soup, milk, dressing mix, and drippings until belnded
5. Stir cream cheese mixture into potato
6. Sprinkle potatoes with the bacon
7. Cook on low 7-8 hours or until potatoes are tender
8. Top with green onions


Recipe adapted from Taste of Home

Come party with me HERE!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas 2016

I truly wish that everyone enjoyed their holiday and made some wonderful memories.
For those who are struggling with the holidays due to those who cannot be with us anymore, please remember they are sharing the holiday in your heart.

We do Christmas Eve at my house with hubby's side of the family and some friends. This year there were 13 of us and we ate, drank, and made quite merry!
Usual traditions include using stockings that my mother in law and sister in law made (many years ago) we do small gifts for everyone.
Not to mention, having A Christmas Story on loop as soon as it starts.
We have one friend who stays after everyone else leaves, and we all visit for awhile. The girl child is then forced into bed so Santa can come.

Cowboy Caviar
Reuben Roll Ups
Spinach Balls
Christmas Tree Bread
Cheese Tray
Chips and Dip
Gingerbread Brownies

Christmas Day is always at my Uncle and Aunt's house.
We do a yankee swap and just enjoy the day together.

This year one cousin and his family went to his wife's side because a family member is moving to the west coast just after the 1st.
Guess we can allow this :)

Now we are home, wading our way through Christmas mess, cleaning up as we go.
Love this season and every chaotic minute.

I hope you loved yours too!

Week in Review: Week 51: Dec 18, 2016 - Dec 24, 2016

Sunday Dec 18, 2016
Pork Chops
Scalloped Potato

Monday Dec 19, 2016
Steak Tip Salads

Tuesday Dec 20, 2016
Spaghetti O's

Wednesday Dec 21, 2016
Baked Potato

Thursday Dec 22, 2016
Cheese and Crackers

Friday Dec 23, 2016
Pot Roast and Mashed Potato

Saturday Dec 24, 2016
Black Forest Ham
Spinach Balls
Stuffed Cheesy Bread Pull Apart
Cowboy Caviar
Reuben Roll ups
Finger Sandwiches
Ham rolls
Onion Dip
Cheeses (oh so many cheeses)
Cinnamon Pie
Gingerbread Brownies
Pumpkin Bread

Monday, December 19, 2016

Cheese Dip

It's that crazy crazy time of the year!
No matter what you celebrate, one theme is the same....everyone thinks they have a good handle on it until crunch time, then it's panic season.

In my case, the shopping is done and wrapped.
Lists are made.
Plans completed.
Yet I am still AAAARGH on the inside.

I decided not to stress over this all this year. Left hubby and the girl child a list of everything that needs to get done between now and when everyone shows up Christmas Eve.
(hey, it's his side of the family...get to dusting!)
At least this way, when they each have a minute, there is no question as to exactly what I want done around the house.

Since I was doing the whole "leaving lists around" thing, I added my grocery list too. Everything I need for Christmas Eve and Christmas day. As they find themselves out and about, they bring me home bits and pieces. The girl ran to Target last night and came back with all the cream cheese I need (since it was on sale). Yay!

I am so looking forward to the craziness, it's just part of the whole season.
Hope everyone has some wonderful memories to make!

What do you do for the holidays?

8 oz Wispread Sharp Cheddar
8 oz Cream cheese (softened)
8 oz Sour Cream
1 Tbsp White wine
½ Tsp Garlic Powder
½ Tsp Onion Powder

1. Combine all ingredients
2. Stir until smooth


Come party with me HERE!

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Week in Review: Week 50: Dec 11, 2016 - Dec 17, 2016

Sunday Dec 11, 2016
Cheesesteak Subs

Monday Dec 12, 2016

Tuesday Dec 13, 2016
Surprise dinner date with hubby and my MIL

Wednesday Dec 14, 2016

Thursday Dec 15, 2016
Pork Chops
Blue Cheese Scalloped Potato

Friday Dec 16, 2016

Saturday Dec 17, 2016
French Fries

Monday, December 12, 2016

Double Peanut Butter and Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies

A group of us decided to do a cookie exchange...via USPS!
We all are scattered around the country, so we talked about all the virtual ones you see online...but we missed that home touch.

I gathered a list of everyone who wanted to participate, put their names in a hat and matched people up.

We had a two week window in which to create, bake, and ship.
It was about 80% successful, not too bad all in all.

A long time friend, whom I have not seen in years participated. Through email we decided that since neither of us were randomly selected to send to each other, that we would just send them on our own.

In true fashion, life got in the way. We thought we had given each other enough time, but as it came down to the last few days, we both remembered our promise.
A quick email and we are back on track!

This Hershey's recipe sounded like the perfect, yummy, comforting cookie to send to my dear friend.
She won't notice that I stole one...

and shhh...don't tell Hubby and the Girl that I did, I have been telling them that I need this exact amount to send. hehehe.

1 ¼ Cups all purpose flour
½ Tsp baking soda
¼ Tsp salt
1 Egg
½ Tsp vanilla extract
¾ Cup sugar
⅓ Cup creamy peanut butter
½ Cup butter (softened)
1 Cup milk chocolate chips
1 Cup peanut butter chips

1. Heat oven to 350
2. Beat butter, sugar, and peanut butter until creamy
3. Add egg and vanilla, beat well
4. Stir together flour, baking soda, and salt
5. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, mixing well
6. Stir in chocolate chips and peanut butter chips
7. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheet
8. Bake 12-14 minutes


Come party with me HERE!

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Week in Review: Week 49: Dec 4, 2016 - Dec 10, 2016

Sunday Dec 4, 2016
Mexican Tater Tot Casserole

Monday Dec 5, 2016
1 Slice Swiss Cheese
(yup. bad day. didn't want food)

Tuesday Dec 6, 2016
Veggie Chili

Wednesday Dec 7, 2016
Noodles and Butter

Thursday Dec 8, 2016
Tex Mex Chicken Soup

Friday Dec 9, 2016

Saturday Dec 10, 2016
Macaroni and Cheese

Monday, December 5, 2016

Sour Cream Noodle Bake

Hubby and I ran to Target yesterday to pick up some necessities...and all those random items that somehow make their way into the cart.

We were walking down the main aisle at the back of the store and I saw two kids, a girl and boy. Both young, he might have been 5-ish and she maybe 7.
She was standing on the bar at the base of the cart, leaning over the handlebar and he was pushing. He was too short to see over the handle, so she was directing "straight" " a little left" etc.

Passed them and kept on going.
Next thing I hear is a crash and hubby sort of yelling out "Ow! you didn't have to do that!"
I turned around and he was bent over, grabbing his ankle.
The kids had rammed him with the cart. Whoops.

Dad was headed our way.

Here's the part that gets me.
Sadly, in this day and age, my first thought was "oh man, this guy is going to come have a fit that hubby said anything to his precious babies".
So many times now, it's never the kid's fault, and heaven forbid the parent take blame for not watching them.
Then my second thought (as the poor dad was watching gimpy husband and looking at me with wide eyes) was....holy schnikes, he's afraid we are going to sue. (once again, it's the effect of this day and age)
All these thoughts took less than 10 seconds.

Then, I felt totally guilty for all my thoughts because all Dad was concerned about was if hubby was OK, explaining to his kids why this was wrong, and trying to get the little one to apologize.

Hubby has a very deep voice, and when it (rarely) gets raised, it's a scary sound. The little boy was so shy and nervous that he refused to apologize. Understand. Loud voices are super scary to little people.
Hubby looked at the kids and said "it's OK. I got hurt, but it will go away", which I think relaxed the little girl a bit.
Then he joked around with the dad a second about rubbing mud into it and walking it off.

I was proud of the other dad for making his kids aware they did wrong.
I was proud of hubby for biting his lip and joking with the family.
I was proud of everyone for just realizing that kids will do silly things, they certainly didn't mean to hurt anyone. 
More than anything, my faith has been a slight bit restored. Not everyone is "my kids do no wrong" ridiculous.
Hubby has an ugly bruise, but that will go away, everyone involved will remember this little moment that we all feared would be so much worse, worked out just fine.

'Tis the season...remember that in everything you experience.

1 ¼ Lb Ground beef
15 oz Tomato sauce
½ Tsp Salt
Ground black pepper
8 oz Egg noodles
½ Cup Sour Cream
1 ¼ Cup Small curd cottage cheese
½ Cup sliced green onion
1 Cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Brown meat in a large skillet, drain fat
3. Add tomato sauce, ½ Tsp salt and pepper to taste
4. Cook egg noodles until al dente, drain and set aside
5. In medium bowl, combine sour cream and cottage cheese
6. Add plenty of pepper
7. Add noodles to sour cream mixture, add green onions
8. Add half of noodles to a 9x13 baking dish
9. Top with half of the meat mixture
10. Sprinkle on half of the grated cheese
11. Repeat
12. Bake 20 minutes


Adapted from: Tasty Kitchen

Come party with me HERE!

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Week in Review: Week 48: Nov 27, 2016 - Dec 3, 2016

Sunday Nov 27, 2016
Salad (me)
Turkey Sandwich (hubby)

Monday Nov 28, 2016

Tuesday Nov 29, 2016

Wednesday Nov 30, 2016
Baked Potato

Thursday Dec 1, 2016
Steak Tip Salad
Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing

Friday Dec 2, 2016
Hot Dogs

Saturday Dec 3, 2016
Steak Tips
Fried Mushrooms