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30 Days of a Thankful Heart {Day 16} Cream-Filled Goodness

17 Nov

I can’t help myself.  With the news of the Hostess demise, I feel compelled to share my thankfulness for the many cream-filled wonders I have consumed.

I have been lol’ing at all the memes floating around Facebook, namely about how well-timed the downfall of Hostess is in relation to the Mayan’s prediction of the end of the world.

It’s hard to imagine a world where my children may never know the joy of a Hostess Cupcake or Twinkie.

When I heard the sad news, I had a few thoughts: Continue reading

30 Days of a Thankful Heart {Day 12} Low & Slow

12 Nov

After another delicious meal thanks to a recipe found on pinterest I know what I am especially thankful for today.

My Crock-pots.

Yep!  That includes being thankful for the food we are able to buy and recipes we make from said food.  I am thankful I have never had to experience true hunger from not having enough food.  I’ve done the 30 hr. Famine a few times, so I’ve felt hungry, but I’ve never wondered where my next meal would come from, or if I would eat at all.

But I am very grateful to have 3 lovely crock-pots that I can throw some ingredients in, set it on low and slow, and come home to the mouth-watering scent of home-cooked goodness wafting through the house.  You might think 3 is an excessive number to have, but really, it isn’t when you are a ministry family.  I have literally used all 3 at the same time before! One is just a baby crock-pot for dips and such.  One is purple and pretty (a birthday present,) and the other is the elegant one we registered for as a wedding gift.  She’s my old lady who works hard!

Here are a few things my classy cookers have helped create:

Chicken Taco Chili

Crock-pot shredded BBQ chicken

Roast and Veggies

 

 

Do you all crock-pot?  What are some of your favorite recipes?

Gracefully~~Heather

Chicken Taco Chili: My version from Pinterest

12 Nov

I took a picture on Instagram yesterday of the crock-pot lunch I had made for Sunday lunch.

It has been a big hit on Facebook and even had a few requests for the recipe (keep reading to find my recipe!)

Well…..I found the idea on Pinterest (where else?), but I actually clicked on the picture and the link didn’t work, though this is what they had listed in the subject line: Continue reading

Lovely Ladybugs at a Garden Party

8 Oct

I had the wonderful opportunity to celebrate our niece’s 1st birthday over the weekend.

My sweet sister-in-law, Amy, and I had fun one evening in September planning Andrea’s party.  You can find my Pinterest board for the party here.  The theme was a veggie garden party because Andrea LOVES vegetables.  As we pinned lots of adorable ideas, Amy thought having Andrea be the ladybug of the garden would be fun.  We quickly found lots of ideas for ladybugs and there are some really cute ones.  However, we narrowed it down to a couple recipes that looked as yummy as they did adorable.

The night before the party we celebrated Micah’s 3rd birthday and then Amy I set to work on party prep.  Amy created these fun and delicious cupcakes from another pinterest recipe.  She molded each vegetable by hand from flavored tootsie rolls.  I think they turned out so well!

Close-up of the hand-molded vegetables. Colored tootsie rolls and green skittle for the peas in the pod.

The cupcakes were chocolate and white, chocolate icing and oreo cookie crushed for the “dirt” the veggies sat on.  Simple and delicious!  I recommend double bagging the oreos while crushing to prevent a mess, or use a food processor.

Dessert table with vegetable cupcakes, ladybug cake for the birthday girl, and veggie decor.

After crushing cookies to create dirt, I was able to help create the lovely little ladies of the garden party.  After some trial, error, and tasting we figured out the best way to make the Strawberry Ladybugs and the Ladybug Cracker Appetizers.

Continue reading

April Shower

30 Apr

If anyone is still hanging around my little blog after my recent absence, a few notes: 1) I’m still here.  I am alive, though currently not so well.  Sinus crud and nearing the end of my pregnancy are taking its toll.  2) Thank you to those who have stuck around. 3) I am struggling to find my energy and inspiration, so hang in there with me a bit longer, please!

I promised to post about the recent baby shower our wonderful church family hosted for us on the 22nd of April.  The photos are finally edited, the gifts sorted if not put away, and I’m working on the long list of thank yous.  Aaron and I were truly humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and generosity of our church family last Sunday at the shower.  The decorations were lovely and had just the right amount of personal touches from ideas I had suggested, the food was scrumptious, and the company superb.  I can’t say thank you enough to the many ladies who put forth so much time, effort, and energy into making the shower such a wonderful success and memory.

There were many photos taken, and I tried to take a few at home of just some of the fabulous gifts we received.  I’m going to put most of the photos in gallery format to save some time.  I hope you enjoy the pictures and the sneak peeks you’ll see of the nursery in progress!

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

18 Mar

I love my slow cookers (yep, 2).  I love them, and I don’t know why I don’t use them more.  I’ve been finding more and more recipes on Pinterest though that are causing me to warm those babies up more often.

Just the other day the hubs went shopping (Yes, he shops,) and he bought a large package of frozen chicken breasts.  I wasn’t too pumped. To be honest, the only way I like frozen chicken is if it is cooked in the slow cooker. I know I am weird, and I am ok with this fact.  Well, I went through my Yummy board on Pinterest and wasn’t coming up with enough slow cooker chicken options, and I wanted BBQ.

I decided that shredded BBQ chicken sandwiches is what I wanted, and I figured I could improvise.  Here is what I came up with.

Slow Cooker BBQ Shredded Chicken

Ingredients

4-6 medium or large frozen chicken breasts

At least 12 oz. BBQ sauce of choice (I LOVE Sweet Baby Ray’s)

3-4 Tablespoons A-1 steak sauce

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/2 cup cola (I used Pepsi)

Salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder

In the slow cooker (after the hubs got to it!)

Steps

  1. In small bowl combine BBQ sauce, A-1 sauce, lemon juice and stir till blended.
  2. Add salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder to taste.  Stir in well.
  3. Place chicken breasts in slow cooker and pour in the 1/2 cup cola.
  4. Pour BBQ sauce mixture over chicken breasts, covering as much as possible.
  5. Turn on low for 6-8 hours.  I checked mine a few times and stirred (flipped chicken), but not a necessary step)
  6. Chicken is done when it can be shredded easily with a fork.  Shred and stir in sauce well.
  7. Place on bun of choice and enjoy!

The Yummy Shredded BBQ Chicken Sandwich on a King's Hawaiian Bun.

Ready to get that slow cooker out again!

Gracefully~~Heather

Lip Smackin’ Hashbrown Casserole

18 Feb

Our church, Trinity UMC, is celebrating its 10 yr. anniversary in May, and like all good churches, we are commemorating the milestone with a cookbook.  Being the pastor’s wife, I had a feeling I would not be excused from contributing.  The problem is that I am not a chef, gourmet cook, or foodie.  Oh, I can cook pretty well and I LOVE food, but I prefer to borrow recipes rather than come up with my own.  Without family, allrecipes.com, and pinterest, we might starve!  (Not really, but you get the idea.)

There are only a handful of recipes I can even begin to claim as my own, and that’s because I have tweaked them from their original state of being.  One of those was my hashbrown casserole.  Good church recipe, right?  I had recently come across another recipe for “Crack Potatoes” from the Plain Chicken website on pinterest and I had the brilliant idea of combining my recipe with some of the crack ingredients.  Tomorrow is the deadline to turn in the recipe (I have been warned) and it is also a church potluck to celebrate our custodian and wonderful lady, Ms. Lucille Edwards.  Lucille has been faithfully serving our church for 50 years as the custodian (she’s a spry 90 yrs young), and God for much longer.  She is a true disciple with a servant’s heart.

Perfect!  I figured I could create my Frankenstein casserole, turn in the recipe, and present a hopefully edible dish for the potluck.  I sent the hubs to the store armed with a list of double the ingredients so I could make a test batch for our dinner.  Here are the results! Continue reading