Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pretty Good Duplicate Shell Decor

I 'pinned' this recently because -- I had everything to make something similar --
Isn't it fab???  This was originally (the previous pinner found it) from the blog - Thoughts From Over The Rainbow.  You can click here to see more of her tablescape.  The above photo is from her blog and I love what she did.

Now, here is my version --

I just love when I can shop right here at home.  And, I knew where everything was - although I did spend a few minutes trying to remember where I saw the candle!!!!

In the previous post I showed Lucy sleeping on this table after I took down the Easter tree.  She was a little curious what I was now doing with her 'bed'!!!!!

Friday, April 27, 2012

When decorating your walls -- Look Around!

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Just look around when decorating your walls -- you never know what you might find!  I put this up as part of my spring decor --

Many years ago I was going to make something similar and give as gifts for Mother's Day.  Instead, I found them at Penney's - just like this - on sale!  Score!!!!  A couple years ago my decorating mind was expanded by all the great blogs out there - which taught me to 'think outside the box'!  This is how it was originally -

I wrapped some wire (the kind I use for my beaded silverware - any kind will do) around the back -

Then, placed it on the wall -

Look really good around your home.  There are many items that you can use to decorate in places that you wouldn't ordinarily think they would go.

That's how Lucy feels about this empty table once the Easter tree was put away.  She feels that it should be her bed and not a place for a floral arrangement -

I am linking to Whipperberry - Friday Flair Link Party.  Just click here to see the amazing crafts, recipes & projects.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Thin Mint Brownies

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This is about as good as it gets - and you can still call it homemade!!!

All you need for the brownies are -

1 brownie mix (I prefer Duncan Hines Milk Chocolate)
1/2 pkg. of Andes Creme de Menthe Baking Chips (found by the chocolate chips at your store)
(plus whatever you brownie mix needs - eggs, oil, water, etc.)

Just mix the brownies according to the package directions (on the Duncan Hines I used the ingredients for fudge-like brownies) -

Just add about a half bag of the Andes Creme de Menthe chips to the mixture -

Mix all together -

Spray a 9 x 13 pan with Pam (or your preference for coating prior to baking) and put the  brownie/mint mix in the pan -

Bake according to the directions on the box -

When cool - frost.  Normally I would make this totally easy and use some chocolate Duncan Hines frosting (my favorite brand), but I only had vanilla in the cupboard.  So, I found this easy recipe online at -
Milk Chocolate Frosting for Brownies
3 T. butter, softened
3 T. cocoa
2 T. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 C. powdered sugar

Just cream the first 4 ingredients with a hand-held mixer.  Then, add the powdered sugar and mix away.  I found this to be the right consistency, but you could always had a little more milk or powdered sugar depending on how it is for you.

I think it tastes similar to the Girl Scout Thin Mint Cookies!!!

Lucy loves when I decorate for any of the holidays.  She just loves to explore when all these totes either are being unloaded or loaded -

I am linking to Flamingo Toes - Think Pink Sundays.  Just click here to see the amazing crafts and recipes.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Baked Ziti

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Baked Ziti - very easy and good when you need a large dish!

This photo might not look the best because this was after several servings were removed.  Better ones to follow!!

Baked Ziti

16 oz. pkg. ziti (or rigatoni, etc.), cooked & drained
16 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 c. cottage cheese
approx. 45 oz. jar spaghetti sauce (I like Prego)
1 tsp. oregano
salt & pepper
1 lb. ground beef, cooked & drained

In a very large bowl - combine the drained ziti with half of the cheese.  Then, add the remaining ingredients and mix well.  Place in a 9 x 13 pan.  Top with the remaining cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

See how easy!!!!

This is the pasta boiling --

All (but half of the cheese) mixed in a very large bowl --

Put in a 9 x 13 pan/dish --

Remaining half of cheese sprinkled on top --

Baked and ready to serve --

Goes great with bread sticks (and a salad, too) --

Lucy is not taking too kindly to all the storms we have had lately.  She is hiding even if it just starts to rain!!  I think she wants to be in her hiding place - just in case!!!  But, really - do you call that hiding???

I am linking to Savvy Southern Style's - Wow Us Wednesdays.  Just click here to see what everyone has been doing lately.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Chicken Ranch Quesadillas

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I made these for the first time the other day and am still thinking about them --

I originally found this recipe at Amy's Finer Things Blog about 1 1/2 years ago and am just now making this.  What was I thinking?????  So fabulous!!!

Chicken Ranch Quesadillas

olive oil or vegetable oil
1/4 C. chopped onion
2 C. fresh spinach
2 C. cooked chicken
2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/3 C. ranch dressing
8 flour tortillas (big ones)

Heat about 1 T. oil in a pan.  Saute the onion until clear then add the spinach.  Just cook it until the spinach is wilted.  Put the onion and spinach in a bowl and add the chicken, cheese, and ranch dressing to it.  Mix well.

In a skillet heat a few drops of oil.  Put one tortilla in the the skillet.  Spread the filling (use about 1/4 of it if making a full batch) around.  Then, place another tortilla on top.  I cooked several minutes on each side.

Use kitchen shears to cut into quarters.

This recipe makes 4 big quesadillas.  You could cut the recipe in half and make just 2 if you would like.  I put the leftovers (uncut) in gallon Ziploc bags and refrigerated.  These tasted great as a lunch (or a snack!!).  I cut them with shears before I heated them - put 2 quarters on a small plate - covered with a paper towel and microwaved on high for 30 seconds.

I love to dip mine in sour cream - but you may also like salsa or guacamole.  (I do love guacamole but did not have any at this time!)

Here are the onions and spinach cooking (spinach has not wilted yet) --

All the ingredients mixed together --

Note on the chicken - I was going to cook boneless chicken breasts in the oven and then chop or shred them, but when I was at the store I decided to buy this as I thought it was just as good cost-wise and especially time-wise.  I used 1 1/2 packages of these for the full batch --

Here is the bottom tortilla in the skillet --

Chicken filling spread around --

Top with another tortilla and cook --

Flip when ready and cook the other side --

Repeat the cooking process until all are finished.  These are great for a main meal or appetizer.  You could always cook on multiple skillets and make several at the same time.

Has anyone been watching the web cams of the Decorah Eagles (I think this takes you to all the web cams so click on the eagles)??  I have been watching some, but I must keep the volume down.  This is what happens when Lucy hears the chirping --

I am linking to Designs By Gollum's Foodie Friday.  Just click here to see all the amazing recipes --