Friday, May 27, 2011

Quick and Easy Weeknight Meal

These days I am all about quick and easy and... HEALTHY. But that seems so hard to come by. One night this past week I was busy up until dinner time and quickly threw together a meal we all loved! Must have been a miracle. Seriously, not one complaint or "I'm not hungry" out of anyone. :) Makes this momma happy! So I thought I'd share in case you are in my boat too! lol

I started with a pound of boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins (antibiotic and hormone free), drizzled a teaspoon of EVOO (Extra virgin olive oil in Rachael Ray speak) in a skillet, chopped the chicken into chunks with my kitchen shears, and tossed it in with sliced red onion and red, green and orange bell pepper. I added roughly a teaspoon of each: oregano, basil and salt. I squeezed a bit of fresh lemon juice over the top and grated in a few cloves of fresh garlic. I added just a teeny bit of hot pepper flakes and a bit of black pepper. I cooked it till the chicken was no longer pink (about 10 min) and placed a lid on the skillet while cooking another five minutes to soften up the veggies.

I also cooked a package of spinach stuffed organic pasta according to package directions (6 minutes) and tossed in some fresh chopped spinach and cherry tomatoes and a small bit of feta cheese.

And here it is! Dinner in 15 minutes and it was soooo good! And did I mention I got the yellow sticker chicken at Wal-Mart? (on sale for $1.50 less per pound!)  And my pasta was a deal from my local discount grocery at 99 cents a pack! :) Can't beat that!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

New Living Room Decor

So after this season of "winter" in our lives, I really needed a change. Days of resting on the couch not feeling well left me ready for a lighter colored living room. I loved the deep, rich tones we had painted it when we moved in over three years ago but I also love change. Decorating is something that motivates and inspires me. I have been loving all the vintage shabby chic things lately and I always love the beach. And the Eiffel tower/Paris scene? Yes please! So our living room is now our little "getaway at home". All done on a budget of next to nothing when you factor in the selling of old pieces and turning what you had into what you want. I would have to say my INSPIRATION PIECE was the buffet. I've always wanted a piece of furniture that color and I LOVE IT!!!
Living Room Entry Before:
Living Room Entry After:

Living Room Sitting Area Before:

Living Room Sitting Area After:

Living Room TV Area Before:

Living Room TV Area After:

 Living Room Fireplace Before:

Living Room Fireplace After:

In Progress:


Friday, May 20, 2011

My new entry table (Old Buffet/Dresser)

Here's the ugly lil thing at start:

Sanding away!
One coat of primer:

And only one coat of Glidden's Icy Teal from WalMart:

Lil bit o' sanding and distressing and a coat of polycrylic. Oh and some white spray paint for the handles and I am loving my new storage for games etc!  Fits perfectly in our redecorated living room. Living room pics to come soon!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wall Decor

We made these for our dining room wall. We began with three wooden frames. I then stapled buralp around the edges. And painted words and a design on in black. Then added pics for fun but they could also be displayed solo. :)
 Can you see 'em behind those cuties?? That was Valentine's Day and our heart-shaped pizza meal

Monday, May 16, 2011

Toy Chest Rescue

Well not more than 6 months ago I purchased what I thought was a very nice little woven toy chest for our living room. I got it at Michael's and used a 40% off coupon and was quite pleased with my purchase. My children immediately claimed it as their window watching spot since it sits beside the couch, in front of the window. Are my kids the only ones who spend hours watching for the arrival of our next guests, or the Tuesday morning trash pick-up, the neighbors lawn mower or the last motorcycle that sped by (um, do they realize if they already heard it, it's already gone)? :) They are so cute on their little perch and I don't have the heart to tell them to stop. But our poor toy chest has taken quite a beating and when the kiddos realized the lid was starting to peel, they helped it along. I wish I had a photo.  As always, I am eager to start my project and only remember photos after it is too late. Well, you can imagine. The poor thing was in sorry shape. But I was not about to send it to the trash heap (or what would they watch from when the trash man came to get it??) Couldn't I just unscrew the lid and rip the peeling weave off and add some quilt batting and a nice fabric. YES!!! So that's exactly what I did! I didn't even glue or tack the quilt batting down, just folded it up and laid it on there. And the fabric you see in the first pics was vetoed by hubby so the cut up shower curtain it is! :) Much better... For at least another 6 months I hope!
After removing the woven top:

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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Fun little table redo and some Mother's Day pics

Here's a little table I snagged at a yard sale a year or two ago and jazzed up with a little painting. Sold it on craigslist when it didn't find the perfect home here but it was a fun little project.

And just because they're cute and I can't resist.... I took these pics to make my own Mother's Day cards and I just love them - the kids I mean ;) But the pics are really cute too!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Texas Roadhouse Sweet

I am posting the recipe for the amazing Texas Roadhouse Sweet Rolls as promised. :) They are soooo good when served with the Cinnamon Honey Butter.  I made these yesterday to go with our soup we were having for dinner. Hope you enjoy them!
Texas Roadhouse Sweet Yeast Rolls
3 Tablespoons yeast
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups milk- scalded and cooled to luke warm (I use almond breeze unsweetened)
3 Tablespoons butter- melted and cooled (I use earth balance sticks)
1/2 cup sugar (I use Florida Naturals organic cane sugar)
8 cups flour (I use half organic bread flour and half organic multipurpose flour)
2 whole eggs
2 tsp. salt

**NOTE: I highly recommend having the milk scalded and cooled and the butter melted and cooled before starting**
Soften yeast in warm water with a teaspoon of sugar. Add milk, sugar and enough flour to make a medium batter. Beat thoroughly. Let stand until light and foamy.

Add melted butter, eggs and salt. Beat well. Add enough flour to form soft dough. Sprinkle small amount of flour on counter and let dough rest. meanwhile, clean and dry bowl; grease clean surface of bowl. Knead dough until smooth and satiny (I use my dough hook on my stand mixer). Put in greased bowl; turn over to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm place until double in bulk. (I like to turn my oven on to 250 and turn it off once it is preheated- then I cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set it in the warm oven. It takes about 30 min to double).

Punch down. Turn out on floured surface. Divide into portions for shaping; let rest 10 minutes. Shape dough into desired forms.(I like to roll mine in a long rope and wind it into a circle) Place on greased baking sheets. Let rise until doubled. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes (until golden brown). Baste immediately with butter.
Yield: 5 dozen

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