Sunday, February 24, 2013

around here...

We've been playing in the snow...a lot. We experienced Blizzard of Oz and got about 10 inches of snow - it's been almost 2 yrs since we've truly had a snow storm. This lead to a four day weekend! Which was nice, but I'm ready to get back to real life and Blizzard of Oz part 2 is on the way tomorrow!

I'm working on catching up with Project Life. Posting 2 weeks & Ordering 3 weeks worth of pictures.

We're looking into some different programs for Claire to be involved in with the school next year.

I'm reading lots of silly chick-lit. Currently reading Friendship Bread, and just finished I've Got Your Number (it's was predictable and unrealistic, but cute).

After hearing so many people talk about them, I watched Season 1 of Downton Abbey and Season 1 & 2 of Arrested Development. I really liked Season 1 of Downton Abbey, but I haven't been able to get into Season 2, I've watched the first 2 episodes and I just don't care that much. Arrested Development is funny, love that it is all on Netflix, so I just watch 3 or so episodes before bed. Thanks to our lovely public library, Justin has been catching up on all the episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Claire is obsessed with LaLaLoopsy's and I think they are taking over my house.

Of the 9 fish and two dwarf frogs that I bought for our new fish tank, 6 fish and 1 frog are still alive AND they have been for over two weeks!!! I didn't know it, and the pet store people didn't tell me, but Neon Tetras are good "starter" fish, so the three fish that died were all Neon Tetras, although two of them are still with us. Then I had two frogs, one was bigger than the other and the smaller one just died. Not sure why... but now whenever I don't see the big one move for a day I start freaking out that he is dead.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Recipe : PB Spreads

These cookies are based on Pioneer Woman's Spreads. This is probably my second favorite re-incarnation of these. My favorite way to make them is to make the cookie base the way she says to (only with salted butter, instead of margarine & salt) and then sprinkle dark chocolate & mint chips on them. However, Justin is not a huge fan of mint which means I ate WAAAAY too many of them so this batch was specifically for Justin.


1 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Salted Butter (softened)
1/2 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
1 whole Egg
2 cups Flour
1 teaspoon Vanilla
6 ounces, weight ( To 8 Ounces) Chocolate Chips

Cream Butter & Peanut Butter. Add Brown Sugar and mix well, then add egg and vanilla and mix well again. Add the flour and mix it until it is all combined, scrapping sides as necessary.

Dump the dough in the middle of a large ungreased cookie sheet. Spread it out so that it is about 1/4 inch thick. I used a combination of my hands and an offset spatula to spread it out.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Sprinkle Chocolate Chips over the top and put back in the oven for a minute or two. Then using an offset spatula, spread the chocolate over the cookie based until the entire cookie covered.

Let them cool on the cookie sheet for a while and then cut into squares (I use a pizza cutter). The longer they sit the more the chocolate with firm up. It will probably take a couple of hours before the chocolate is firm enough to put them away in a container where they will be stacked...assuming that you manage to not eat all of them between the time they get done and they time you can put them away.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Menu Monday (on Tuesday, again)

I actually had the menu made since Sunday (I worked on it during the superbowl), but then I didn't get a chance to type it up until tonight.

Monday - Chili-Stuffing Bake
Tuesday - Lawnmower Taco Casserole
Wednesday - Garlicky-Chicken Noodle Bake
Thursday - Leftovers
Friday - Cheddar Brats, Fries
Saturday - Chinese Take-Out
Sunday - Leftovers

The Chili-Stuffing bake was sooo good. The recipe was on the back of a box of cornbread stuffing mix - of course I didn't follow the actual recipe because I was using leftover chili. The Garlicky-Chicken Noodle bake was from my Make-Ahead and Freeze cookbook. I made the casserole on Wednesday and ended up putting it in two casserole dishes, one that we had that night and one that went in the freezer for another time.

Monday - Deli Meat Sandwiches
Tuesday - Breakfast Scramble
Wednesday - Homemade Pizza (Pepperoni & Sausage)
Thursday - Freezer Burritos
Friday - Homemade Mac & Cheese
Saturday - Pan-fried Cube Steak
Sunday - Leftovers