Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Peanut Butter Balls

These little balls are bursting with peanut butter flavor and sweet enough to satisfy any sweet craving. This is a treat that the kids can help make. My 5 year old helped with these and had lots of fun doing so. The great thing about these is that they leave no mess! Yay! 

Peanut butter balls

5-6 cups rice crispy cereal
1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup peanut butter

Put rice cereal in a large bowl. Set aside. Combine sugar and corn syrup in a pot over medium high heat. Bring to a boil. Once it is boiling add peanut butter and remove from heat quickly. Pour peanut butter mixture over rice cereal and toss to evenly coat. Place your hands under the sink and run cold water on them.  Form balls with your hands and place on a sheet of wax paper to cool  Makes 24.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Foodie Friday: Lizard Stew

One of the things I love most about winter is being able to cook soups. I am always trying new recipes and this was a new recipe we tried out of the worlwide ward cookbook earlier this week that my family loved. Let me clarify that this soup does not have lizards in it! I have no idea why it is called that but oh man is it good! I told my 5 year old we were having lizard stew and she flipped out, but after I explained there is no lizards in it she was ok with it and actually ended up eating her whole bowl full. The great thing about this soup is that it is very easy to make! Easy is great right? I'm sure your whole family will like this just as mine does and will become a family favorite. That's the kind of meals you want anyways right-yummy and easy:)

Lizard Stew
1 pound ground beef, browned
1 10oz can green chiles and diced tomatoes (I only put in half the amount of green chiles. I didn't want it too spicy)
1 15oz can chili beans
1 26oz can minestrone soup
1 pound velveeta cheese

Combine all ingredients but the cheese in a large pot. Once soup starts bubbling add cheese and heat through. Serve with corn chips if you desire. This can be cooked in a crock pot as well on the low setting.  You would just add the cheese about a half hour before serving. Serves 6

Thursday, December 26, 2013

DIY Thursday: Brown sugar & vanilla sugar scrub

 This year for Christmas I ended up giving my sister in law and one of my sisters this sugar scrub. Sugar scrubs are really easy to make and you can make some really yummy smelling ones. Homemade scrubs work just as well as store bought ones at making skin super soft. Sugar scrubs work great on heels, elbows, anywhere you want to soften your skin. This particular scrub only needs 3 ingredients: sugar, coconut oil and vanilla. Simple enough right? I had fun making this and it really does leave your skin nice and soft. I'm excited to experiment, try new scrubs, and share with you.

Vanilla Brown Sugar Scrub:
 1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1-2 tsp vanilla

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and add more brown sugar if needed. Put in a jar/container and wrap with ribbon or whatever else you may like.

*Tip-You can save containers and reuse them instead of buying new ones by just removing the labels off of them*

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Oreo Cheesecake Cookies

These cookies were super easy to make.  They don't have egg so you can feel a little less guilty eating the dough....=) These are great to make when you have little helpers to roll the cookies in the crumbs.
1/2 c. butter
3 ounces cream cheese
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. flour
1/2 c. mini chocolate chips
1 c. oreo cookie crumbs

Preheat oven to 375.
In a bowl, cream butter and cream cheese.  Add in sugar and vanilla.  Mix until well combined.  Add in flour.  Stir in mini chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.  Place oreo crumbs in a bowl.  Roll cookie dough into 2 in. balls and roll in cookie crumbs.
Bake for 12-15 minutes

Monday, December 23, 2013

Munchkin Monday: Reindeer Food

I know Christmas break starts today for most schools around us and those kiddos of yours are probably already looking for something fun to do, but then maybe some of you have kids that have their break all planned out and know what they're going to do each day. Whether you have bored kids or kids that have their break all planned out I have a great little activity for you to do. With Christmas Eve tomorrow what would be more perfect to do than make a little bit of reindeer food to help Santa's reindeer make sure and find your house! My family has made some of this before and then I know Trinity just made some cause her little boy and my daughter go to same preschool and he handed some out to everyone of his classmates. Reindeer food is way easy to make and your kids will love making some! They will love knowing Santa and his reindeer won't miss their house.

To make reindeer food all you need is:

Bird seed
Glitter in any color but it's more festive in red and green (or you can use colored sugar crystals)

There is no set measurements so just combine a little bit of each and viola you now have food for Santa's reindeer!

If you are giving this away to some friends or family make sure to include these simple instructions: 
"Sprinkle on the lawn at night, 
The moon will make it sparkle bright,
 As Santa's reindeer fly and roam, 
This will guide them to your home."

Friday, December 20, 2013

Foodie Friday: Beef Stuffed peppers

I never had stuffed peppers until after I got married and decided to try some one night for dinner. I was skimming through an Eating Better cookbook I had bought in high school and decided to try this recipe out. I was surprised at how delicious they were. My husband especially likes these! These are really yummy, and a healthier dinner choice!

Beef Stuffed Peppers:
4 green, red, or yellow peppers
1 lb ground beef (the more lean the better)
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup uncooked white rice
4 Tbsp catsup, divided
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dried oregano, divided
1/4 tsp pepper
1 can Italian style stewed tomatoes (I used some home canned stewed tomatoes)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut tops off bell peppers,  remove seeds. Combine ground beef, onion, rice, 3 Tbsp catsup, salt, 1/2 tsp oregano,  and pepper in a large bowl mixing lightly. Spoon into peppers. Stand in a 8X8 dish. Combine remaining catsup, oregano, and stewed tomatoes. Pour over peppers. Cover dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, until beef is no longer pink and juices run clear.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

December Blog Train Freebies!!!

A few of our girls are participating the December LDS Blog Train on our sister srapbooking site, Talented Scrappers.  They have 3 sets of papers for you.  

This set is on this blog =)

Visit their blog, to get this paper pack (and the rest of the link for the blog train)

 For the glitter papers, go to our facebook page and grab yours:

Thursday, December 12, 2013

DIY Thursday: Olliblock Coupon Codes

Are you looking for a fun inexpensive gift for your kids for Christmas? Well I give you Olliblocks.

If you are addicted to Pinterest as much as I am you might have seen these adorable blocks flying around. Awhile ago I pinned them as an idea for Christmas gifts for my boys and a few days ago I went to their store to check them out.

SO CUTE! They have a bunch of different styles and they are all cute. To purchase the files to make a set of three (that's 9 blocks) it costs $12. But being the cheapskate I am I went searching for a discount code.

There are a bunch of blogs who have promoted Caravan Shoppe. (Where Ollieblocks are sold.) And all of these sites were given 20% off discount codes. And they still work!! Yay!! It looks like you can use one coupon per item you purchase. So I bought the starter pack and the Zoo booster pack. Originally $24 I got them for $14.40.

Here are a few of the codes I found and the super cute blogs they are from.
http://www.thecoterieblog.com - code - welovecoterie
http://www.sisterssuitcaseblog.com - code - suitcaselove
http://www.doeadeery.com - code - lovedoeadeery
http://frockfiles.com - code - welovefrock

Caravan Shoppe also has their own discounts you can take advantage of.
For 20% off an order of $25 or more, use the code itsaparty.
For 30% off an order of $50 or more, use the code caravanconfetti

Well I hope this helped with some of your holiday stress. Love you all and happy crafting!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wild Card Wednesday: Christmas gift ideas

The Christmas season is now upon us! It is such a wonderful time to remember our Savior's birth and to give to others. A couple days ago we had a family Christmas party and usually we all bring a little something for each family. Nothing too fancy, just a little something to say hey we love you and appreciate all you do. I got thinking that all these fun gift ideas would be great to share in case any of you readers are looking for some kind of idea for a gift for neighbors, friends, or families. 

Gift idea #1

Loaf of bread: We "loaf" you tons!

Gift idea #2

Hand Soap: We "wash" you a Merry Christmas
This is what I gave everyone this year. There is a really cute printable on this site. I was going to use the printable originally, but then realized my printer needs a new color cartridge, so I had to make my own using plain black.

 Gift idea #3

Hot chocolate: Wishing you a "warm" and wonderful Christmas

 Gift idea #4

Hersheys kisses: We wish you a Merry "Kissmas"
You can also put kisses in a whisk and say  We "Wisk" you a Merry "Kissmas"

Gift idea #5

A spatula with a box of brownies or cookies: We "flippen" love you!

Hopefully you like one of these ideas! Have fun shopping and gift giving this Holiday Season!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Gingerbread Trees

This is a post from last year but it is so fun I thought I would share it again =)
A great Christmas tradition is building gingerbread houses and decorating them.  We have lots of fun doing it, but usually our houses cave in and they end up a pile of crackers, frosting and candy.  I wanted to do something that would be easy, fun, and would stay up.  I heard this idea and instantly loved it!  Gingerbread Trees!!  It was super easy, cheap, and the kids had fun!  It kept them occupied for a couple hours and wasn't labor intensive for me, which was good considering we did this 5 days after I had my baby.

Here's what you need to create your own gingerbread tree forest:
sugar cones (not waffle, the sugar ones are flat and will stand up)

frosting (either store bought, or whip up your own, I used shortening and added powdered sugar until it was the thickness I wanted)
food coloring, optional

whatever candies you want to decorate (sprinkles, dots, m&m's, marshmallows, licorice, ect.)

Then let the kids spread the frosting and decorate (and of course they will munch on the candy)!  So easy!!

You can find this awesome post linked up to the following Fantastic Parties:

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Nutella Oreo Cheesecake Deep Dish Cookie Pie

That name is a mouthful!!  But so is this dish!  It is very good and really rich!  The way I found this was I was going to a Pie Night (everyone brings a pie to share) and I didn't have a pie and it was in 2 hours...not enough time to make a pie.  So I searched pinterest and found this recipe.  It was a huge hit with everyone!!!  Here is the place I found it: Back For Seconds


  • 3/4 cups butter (softened)
  • 8oz cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cup Oreos (chopped )
  • 3/4 cups Nutella


Preheat oven to 350*
In a large bowl cream the butter, cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla.
Gradually add in the soda, salt, and flour and mix until incorporated being careful not to over mix.
Stir in 1 cup of oreos and the chocolate chips by hand.  Press half of the dough into a greased cast
 iron skillet.  Spread 1/2 cup nutella all around the dough and top with remaining dough.
Bake for 30-35 minute or until toothpick inserted comes out clean (there will be some melted chocolate
 on the toothpick, you just want to be sure the dough itself is cooked through)
Let cool and drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup of nutella (melted) and remaining oreos

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Wildcard Wednesday: Grinch board

One of my favorite Christmas movies is "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." I love how it demonstrates that Christmas isn't about all the stuff we get. 
So I got a bit creative this year and decided that I needed a board outside for Christmas like I did for Halloween.  But I wanted something unique and not just "Merry Christmas" or "Santa Stops Here." so I designed up the vinyl for this using my Silhouette machine and me a cute new decoration.  I love it and can't wait to put it out.  

And  if wood crafts aren't your forte, I made up this printable for you to have with the same saying.  I used a kit from Leaving a Legacy Designs called "All Wrapped up"  
All Wrapped Up!
(You can find it here if you want you own...there are tons and tons of papers and elements)

You can choose either 8x10 or 5x7.  Both are included in the file =)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: S'more Cookies

Yes, I know I have done s'more cookies before, but this is a different version.  And my husband's new favorite.  I recently made these and took them to the job I am working during the holidays...trying to bribe my way into making everyone like me.  It worked =)  Well...until they ate more and more and ruined their diets and now they don't like me for that =) These are super good and you should go make them right now!!

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups flour
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup Hershey Bar chunks (I crunched up a king sized bar) you can use chocolate chips instead
1/2 cup Jet Puffed Mallow Bits (the min marshmallows you find in hot chocolate packets), they are found in the hot chocolate isle at Walmart and Target

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for an additional 2 minutes.
 In a separate bowl, whisk together the graham cracker crumbs, flour, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix on low speed until the dough just comes together. Add the chocolate and marshmallows and stir to combine.
Place tablespoon sized scoops of dough onto the prepared cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 6-8 minutes.
Makes 2 dozen cookies.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Foodie Friday: Brocolli Cheese Soup

Once the cold weather sets in, my favorite thing to do is make soups!  Which bugs my hubby because he isn't a soup person (he is a meat and potatoes type person)  But oh well, every once in awhile I have to cook a meal that is for ME and not everyone else and they just have to deal with it.  You get what you get and you don't throw a fit! =)  I love broccoli and cheese soup but the canned stuff has way too much salt for me.  So when I found a recipe that didn't have any canned stuff I had to try.  I think this is a keeper!
3 tbsp. oil
1/3 of a yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped or minced
salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsp. flour
2 1/2 c. chicken stock or broth
3/4 c. milk
1 1/2 c. broccoli florets
2 c. white cheddar cheese, shredded, plus extra for garnish (you can sub yellow cheddar if you want)
1 c. mozzarella cheese, shredded
seasonings to taste (I used some roasted garlic and herb seasonings)

In a large saucepan, heat oil.  Add onions and saute.  Add garlic and salt and pepper.  Cook until onions are translucent, about 3 minutes.  Add flour to pan and stir until the moisture is soaked up, and cook for 1 minute.
Add stock a little at a time, mixing to incorporate all ingredients and work out any lumps.  Add milk.  Bring mixture to a simmer and add broccoli.  Simmer over medium heat until soup has thickened slightly, about 10-15 minutes.  Remove from heat and break up chunks by putting some in a blender or food processor.  Do as much or as little as you want, depending on how chunky you like it.  Return soup to heat and simmer for another 5 minutes.  The stir in cheese.  Stir until all the cheese is melted and thickened.  Ladle into bread bowls and garnish with extra cheese if desired.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

DIY Book Safe

I try really hard to get people gifts that I know they will love, but there are some people that are harder than others. Like my brother in law. Love the man to death bu the is hard to shop for. So for his birthday this year I stalked him on Pinterest to try to get some ideas. And amid the video games and the pictures of tanks I found this fun idea. Make your own book safe. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

DIY Thursday: Thanksgiving kitchen dress towel

A few days ago my mother in law gave me this cute towel that she made. I thought it was too cute not to share! I'm not one who sews, but it looks as if it would be incredibly easy to make. All it needs is some fabric, a dish towel, and ribbon. I took a picture close up so you can see how to exactly attached everything. Go ahead and try to make one! If you're not someone that sews I know that Quilted Bear sells some cause I was just in their yesterday and saw a booth with some! Wouldn't this be cute and good to use on Thanksgiving Day!?!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Foodie Friday: Crockpot Chicken Noodle Soup

Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup
2-3 chicken breasts
3 celery stalks
3 carrots
1 onion, minced
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp dried basil
2 bay leaves
6 cups broth (I used about 7-8 bouillon cubes for mine...I like the extra flavor)
plus any extra seasonings you like.  I added minced garlic, and I have this super yummy roasted garlic and herb seasoning that I put on.

2 1/2 c. uncooked egg noodles

Slice your celery, thin.  Shred your carrots. Place the celery, carrots and onion in the bottom of the slow cooker.  then put your chicken on top.  I did mine whole and still frozen.  Pour the broth in.  Then let it cook on high for about 4 hours, or until the chicken is cooked thorough.  When it is done, shred the chicken (I put it in my kitchenaide and let it do the work).  Then let it cook to get some flavor soaked in.  While that is happening, cook your noodles.  Once the noodles are done, add them in the soup and let them cook for about 1/2 hour on low, to soak up some of the flavor.

This was the perfect meal for a rainy day.  I like my soups chunky and this is definitely chunky and full of lots of stuff.  You can add more broth if you like more liquid.  It is a very forgiving recipe =)  Serve it up with some nice warm rolls and YUM!!!!!!