Tuesday, May 12, 2015

We moved!

Nothing like silence on a blog to indicate big life events are probably happening! My husband and I are starting to settle into a new home. Boy oh boy! I do not recommend moving with babies. It was a pain in the butt, and it makes it a lot harder to get these unpacked and set up, but alas, here we are! We still have boxes to unpack and things to go through and pictures to hang, but we are so happy to be in a quiet neighborhood. Our old house was a good little house, but the street we lived on was just not family friendly. Now we live somewhere where Micah has school friends in the neighborhood and can ride around safely on his scooter. It really is nice to be here...even if this house has a ton of projects. :) I am hoping to blog more soon.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Cauliflower Mash

When  I think of cauliflower, I think of semi warm, microwave-heated cauliflower florets. It's not appetizing, and it is generally bland, and I don't get excited about it. My dad was diagnosed with cancer in his right kidney, and recently had to have it removed. He also had type 2 diabetes. Although he is no longer medicated for it, and now has only one kidney, eating healthy is an important aspect of his life now. And I like to try new recipes to share with him.

My husband and I decided to give making "Cauliflower Mash" a go. It's a take on the well-loved, high carb mashed potatoes. I was apprehensive if it would be as tasty as the pictures made it looked, but lo and behold it was! What a fantastic substitute. It's definitely one of those foods you make, and you don't feel like you're missing out on anything- it's that good.

This is the original recipe I used, but with a few modifications: Garlic Mashed Cauliflower.

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove of garlic, smashed (or minced)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
3-4 tablespoons of low fat cream cheese
3/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper

1. Cut your cauliflower into florets, if not already done.
2. Place a steamer insert into a saucepan and fill with water to just below the bottom of the steamer. Bring water to a boil. Add cauliflower, cover, and steam until tender, about 10 minutes.
 3.  Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat; cook and stir garlic until softened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
4.  Transfer half the cauliflower to a food processor; cover and blend on high. Add remaining cauliflower florets, small scoops at a time, until vegetables are creamy. Blend in garlic, Parmesan cheese, cream cheese, salt, and black pepper. (I did the rest of the ingedients one at a time, but I am not sure that made a huge difference, but I did want to note that!)

 We served ours with mini turkey meatloaves and corn! It was delicious!!!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Get your Zen on!

Over Christmas, my husband bought me a wonderful book on Zentangling. In case you are wondering what that is, let me tell you! According to WikiHow, Zentangle was intended to make the act of drawing pleasurable, meditative and accessible to all. There are a lot of variations, and it has evolved since someone first thought of it, but essentially, it's fancy doodling, and it is actually quite relaxing.

Here is my first "official" zentangle after learning some tricks of the trade:
I started off using pencils because my ballpoint pens were not cutting it, but then, I decided to invest in Sakura Micron pens, and it changed my Zentangle life. The rest was done with these new fancy pens, and I found that everything looked sharper and much improved.

So if you are looking for a new hobby, I recommend trying some Zentangle art!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Chicken Parmesan

If there is one Italian meal that I love, it is Chicken Parmesan. It's my go to when I go to an Italian restaurant, but after I made this recipe, it has not been the same when eating out. This is just SO good.

So here we go:
Chicken Parmesan
  • 4 Skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 c grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoon flour (or more)
  • 1 cup olive oil (for frying)
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup grated provolone cheese (I threw some sliced provolone into a food processor to "grate" it)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (this is not a duplicate, just set it aside separately from your other 1/4 c.)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (again set aside, not a duplicate)
  1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees F
  2. Firmly pound chicken with smooth side of meat mallet to a thickness of 1/2 inch. (I wrap mine in parchment paper to avoid chicken splatter in my kitchen). Season chicken with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Beat eggs in shallow bowl, and set aside.(You will be putting your chicken in this bowl to coat, so make sure a chicken breast will fit)
  4. Mix bread crumbs and 1/4 c. Parmesan cheese in separate bowl, set aside. ((You will be putting your chicken in this bowl to coat, so make sure a chicken breast will fit)
  5. Place flour in strainer; sprinkle over chicken evenly on both sides. (This was a pain in the butt, but it evenly coats)
  6. Dip flour coated chicken in beaten eggs. Transfer breast to bread crumb mixture, pressing crumbs into both sides. Set aside breasts for about 15 minutes.
  7. Heat 1 cup olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat until it begins to shimmer. Cook chicken until golden, about 2 minutes on each side. Place on paper towels after frying to absorb extra oil. Chicken will finish cooking in the oven. If you have a second bath of chicken to fry, I recommend emptying out that oil, and reheating a new 1/2 cup so it doesn't get gross.
  8.  Place chicken in baking dish and top each breast with approximately 1/3 cup of tomato sauce (essentially, just make sure you do it evenly). Layer each breast in even amounts of mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, and provolone cheese. Sprinkle 1 to 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese on top and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  9. Bake in the oven until cheese is browned and bubbly, and chicken breasts are no longer pink in the center, 15 to 20 minutes.
  10. Goes great with a salad and some pasta! Yum! 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Valentine's Day 2015

It's that time of year again to get your Valentine Card ideas rolling. I am exciting to do something creative for my stepson to take to school. I will, of course, need his "official" approval, but for now I have a few ideas running around in my head from Pinterest. I cannot wait to share with you the winner! Hopefully, I will have more blog posts before then to share. :)

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


I cannot believe 2014 is almost over. 29 more days. I have a ton of papers surrounding my desk-- that has been that way since the baby was born. I don't know the last time I mopped my floors. I haven't made a home cooked meal in a few weeks. But every minute being a mommy to my new daughter is worth it! I am so in love!

We are going to hopefully get the house decorated for Christmas soon. Babies love lights, so I am sure she will be very into the holiday season.

In the name of budgeting, I've already bought a few people's Christmas presents! How is your Christmas shopping going? Do you start early or wait until Christmas is closer? I still have plenty more shopping to do though.

Hoping to update again soon!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Baby, baby, baby

Sorry for the lack of posting for a while. I had my baby! Boy, what a job being a mom to a baby is. I helped raise my stepson from the age of two, so Alyanna is my first baby! I love being a mom to her. She is a great baby, and I feel so lucky. Hopefully, I will have more posts soon.