Friday, October 31, 2008


Next time you or someone you know goes to Hawaii, can you have them pick this up for me?

I'll do the big butt dance for you.

What can you do with leftover chili?

1) Top it with Jiffy cornbread mix and turn it into a chili cornbread casserole
2) Sour Cream Chili Bake with Fritos
3) Top baked potatoes with the chili, cheese, and some sour cream
4) Tacos
5) Nachos
6) Make Tex-Mex pasta. I'm doing this from memory so bear with me.

Tex-Mex Pasta

1 box fusili, prepared as per directions on box
1 jar salsa*
Leftover chili (maybe 1 lb or so)
1 box Stouffer's spinach souflee**
1 8oz box of Neufatchel cream cheese
2 cups shredded cheese

Preheat over to 350 degrees
Boil pasta
Combine leftover chili with the jar of salsa and heat through
Microwave spinach until almost cooked and mix with cream cheese in a microwaveable bowl
Heat until cream cheese is melted and you can easily stir to blend
Place a small layer of the meat mixture in the bottom of a 13x9 casserole dish
Top with half of the noodles
Top with half of spinach mixture
Top with half of meat mixture
Top with half of the cheese
Bake for 45 mintues in a 350 degree oven

*If I'm not using chili I will use a blackbean/corn salsa. If I'm using chili, I will use a medium salsa such as Paul Newman's
**Make sure you are using the Stouffer's spinach souflee and not creamed spinach. It makes a huge difference

My 2 year old devours this.

Visit the recipe swap over at the Grocery Cart Challenge for more ideas.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Have I told you how much I love my husband?

When I went to help a friend the other night, it was my turn to do the dishes. I told him that I was sorry that I hadn’t done them and that I would do them when I got home. He did them for me. When I got home I almost cried. I don’t think I have ever loved him more than in that moment.

He is actually going out of his way now at the grocery store to use coupons and save us money instead of buying the first thing he sees so that he can get in and out.

Today he calls me b/c he went to Sam’s and they had pumpkins for $.89 so he bought me one. I’ve been wanting more pumpkin seeds. They taste like popcorn and are totally delicious.

This may all sound silly, but I’m telling you that this is how my man shows me he loves me.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Food Friday-Paula Deen's Chicken Florentine Casserole

I was watching the Food Network the other night and Ms. Deen said that this is a recipe that every wife should have in her repertoire. It's good for pot lucks, it's good for a quick dinner, it's good for freezing. Well I had to try this out. OMG! It's so good. We only made half a batch and served it with rice but it served 4 adults. My kid did not like this b/c of the curry, but we'll keep putting it on his plate. Next time I make it, I'm going to stir cooked rice into the casserole and make a meal in one dish. I have amended this a little from her original.

2 (10-ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach
6 chicken breast halves (about 4 pounds), cooked, boned, and chopped
2 (10 3/4-ounce) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
2 cup grated sharp Cheddar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon curry powder
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs (we used crushed Ritz crackers and I think it made it better)
2 tablespoons butter

Remove the outer wrappers from the box of spinach. Open 1 end of each box. Microwave on full power for 2 minutes, until thawed. Drain the spinach and put into a large bowl. Add the chicken.

In a medium bowl, combine the soup, mayonnaise, sour cream, Cheddar, lemon juice, curry powder, salt and pepper, to taste, and wine. Whisk together to make a sauce. Pour the sauce over the spinach and chicken. Mix well with a spatula.

Place the mixture into an 11 by 7-inch casserole dish or 2 (9-inch) square disposable aluminum foil pans that have been sprayed with vegetable oil cooking spray. Pat down evenly and smooth with a spatula. Combine the Parmesan and bread crumbs and sprinkle over the top. Dot with the butter.

Wrap the uncooked casserole securely with plastic wrap, then with aluminum foil. Place each pan into a plastic freezer bag and seal. Place into freezer.

Allow casserole to thaw 24 hours in refrigerator. When ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap and foil. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes until bubbly.

For more recipes, visit The grocery cart challenge.

Monday, October 20, 2008

My heart just broke a little

I would wear these every day until they fell off of my feet. Seriously.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pumpkin Butterscotch Muffins

Well since I'm obsessed with all things pumpkin I thought I would post another recipe. This one is heavenly. Seriously. It was sent down from heaven for you to enjoy. If you eat these, you will never sin again.

Pumpkin Butterscotch Muffins


* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
* 1/2 cup brown sugar
* 1/2 cup white sugar
* 2 tsp apple pie spice or a combo of the 3 spices below
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
* 1 tsp baking soda
* 1/4 tsp baking powder
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 2 eggs
* 1/2 cup melted butter
* 1 cup canned pumpkin (I used my pumpkin puree)
* 6 oz pkg butterscotch chips


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease mini-muffin pan with cooking spray.
2. Sift together the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Whisk together the eggs, butter, and pumpkin in a separate bowl. Mix the flour mixture with the egg mixture. Stir in the butterscotch chips; pour into each cup of the muffin pan to about 3/4 full.
3. Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, 20 to 22 minutes.

**Recipe modified from this one

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pumpkin Corn Bread

My love of pumpkin this year knows no boundaries. I just can't get enough.
Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins

1 1/2 cups yellow or white cornmeal (I used stone ground)
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbs baking powder
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp apple pie spice (or a combo of 1/2 cinnamon and 1/2 nutmeg)
1 tsp salt
1 egg
3 tbs canola oil (you can also use corn or vegetable oil)
3/4 cup pureed pumpkin (you can use canned pumpkin too)
1 1/2 cups low-fat milk

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 12-cup standard muffin tin with cooking spray.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, flours, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well to remove any lumps, sifting if necessary.
Beat the egg lightly in a mixing bowl. Add the oil, pumpkin, and milk to the egg and beat together until well-combined.
Gently mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, stirring just until combined. Some lumps may remain; this is okay.
Divide the mixture evenly among the 12 muffin cups.
Bake at 350ºF for 20-25 minutes, checking at 20 minutes to see if they are done. They will be done when a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Makes 12 muffins.

*This recipe has been modified from the original that I found on Kidscuisine*
**For more pumpkin ideas, please visit Life as Mom**
***For more recipe ideas head over to the recipe swap***

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Never pay more than...

$5 Dinner Mom started a new list called "Never pay more than..." I'm borrowing from her and adding & adjusting as I see fit. I'm going to keep this updated on my sidebar.

Ground Beef $1.69/lb.

Boneless/Skinless Chicken Breast $1.99/lb.

Pork Chops $1.99/lb

Can of Tomatoes $.40/can

Box cereal $.80

Box Kashi cereal $1.50

Yogurt $.40 each

8 oz. Cheese $2

Toothpaste FREE

Toothbrushes FREE

Shampoo FREE

Dishwashing Soap FREE

Dishwasher Soap $.50/box

canned cream of soup $.65

Razors FREE

Body wash FREE

Excedrin FREE

Children's medications $1

Hand soap $.25

Salad Dressing $1.25/bottle

Frozen Veggie side dishes $.77/box

White or brown rice $.50/lb

Pasta $.45/lb

grapes $.89/lb

bananas $.59/lb

Shredded, bagged cheese $1.50/2 cups

Saturday, October 11, 2008

New handbag anyone?

Want to win a cute new handbag? Handbag Planet launches Oct. 15 and is giving away 24 handbags in 24 hours that day to celebrate.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Food Friday-powerball cookies

I have not made these yet but they are on the agenda for this weekend. They look like a great snack for both the monkey and the parents. This was in Wondertime magazine.

Makes 40-48 cookies

Mix together 1 cup peanut butter and 1 cup honey until smooth. Gradually add in 3 cups old fashioned oats and 1/2 cup ground flaxseed. Add 1 cup chocolate chips and 1 cup any combination of nuts and soft dried fruit(try 1/2 cup coarsely chopped peanuts and 1/4 cup each of raisins and dried cranberries) and mix gently in your stand mixer or smush together by hand.

Roll into Ping-Pong-size balls and, for maximum presentation value, put in paper mini muffin cups. You can eat them right away, but they'll be less sticky after a night in the fridge. They freeze well too, layered on wax paper in an airtight container.

For more recipe ideas, go visit the Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Are you scared yet?

My sister in law did this and scared me so now I would like to scare her.

List 7 random and/or weird things about yourself:

1) I love Duke's Mayonnaise. I mean, like, LOVE it. When I was younger I used to eat Mayonnaise sandwiches-not because we couldn't afford meat but b/c I love Duke's Mayo so much. Seriously. This is the one thing I will buy w/o it being on sale or having a coupon. I don't compromise...ever. I switched to diet Mt. Dew but I will not ever switch to low-fat, reduced-fat crap b/c Duke's is the best. Convinced yet?

2) I rarely clip my fingernails. They are a perfect shade of french manicure. I really don't know how else to describe them. They are perfectly pink with white tips and they look like they are professionally done. They are strong and I hate to file them. I also hate manicures because you have to have your nails filed. I rarely paint them but my toes are almost always painted and I love pedicures.

3) I love tomatoes and I love fried chicken but if you put the two of those on the same sandwich, I will not eat it. I love milk and I love chocolate, but not chocolate milk.

4) I find it deeply satisfying to pick my nose w/o a tissue. Don't worry you can still shake my hand b/c I am also always washing my hands. Besides, you know that you enjoy it too.

5) The other day my son took an infant pool float that has a place for your kid to put their legs and turned it upside down over his head. It looked like a giant space ship. He then proceeded to chase me around the house with his hands in the shape of lobster claws about to pinch me, screaming "I'm gonna get you!" (yes not about me, but he is my kid and I love that he is so weird).

6) Remember those 3-D pictures back in the 90's that if you stared at long enough and crossed your eyes just a little, you could see a picture within the picture? Well, yeah, I couldn't do that b/c I'm already cross-eyed and see perfectly fine with my eyes crossed.

7) Farts are funny.