Friday, June 28, 2013

Foodie Friday: Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

I love sweet and sour chicken but it seems like whenever I get it nowadays at the restaurant it has a funny taste.  So I have tried making it from scratch and then it tastes too much like ketchup since most the recipes I have found use that.  Well, I went on vacation to visit my mom for a few weeks.  I didn't want to eat out a whole lot because I am cheap and I didn't want to gain 10 pounds while I was here =)  One of our traditions when we come here is there is a Chinese restaurant that we always go to.  It was actually the restaurant that we had our wedding luncheon at because my hubby's parents were friends with the owners.  One of the highlights was coming each year and seeing the owner, Kathy.  She loved seeing the kiddos grow.  Well, last time we went we found out that Kathy had retired so she wasn't there anymore.  My kids were sad because they loved seeing her.  So this time we won't be making our usual trip but I still wanted Chinese food.  So I visited one of my favorite blogs, The Country Cook, for a recipe I had been wanting to try.

3-4 boneless chicken breasts
1-16 oz. bottle Catalina
1 packet onion soup mix
1 cup apricot preserves (or peach)
1-15.75 oz. can pineapple chunks, drained
2 peppers, chopped, I used 1 green and 1 orange
rice for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut chicken into 1-inch pieces.  In a bowl, combine the dressing, preserves, and onion soup.  Add in chicken.  Spray a 9x13 dish and pur the chicken mixture in.  Cook for 45 minutes.  Add in pineapple and peppers and then cook for another 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and serve over cooked rice.  Enjoy!!! 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wild Card Wednesday: Summer Nails

Summer is here
We love to paint our nails and toe nails at our house and what better time to do that then SUMMER!
We like to try everything for nail out there so here is the newest thing that we found at Walmart.
Nail Rock!
This is so so so much fun!!
There are a few different colors to chose from.
They take a little bit longer to dry but they are very easy to do. 
 Enjoys your summer with these fun nails

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Smore stuffed cookies

I love to stuff things inside of cookies =)  This recipe is one of my favorites....but just a warning, the cookies it makes are pretty big (the original version).  I cut the size in half so they are a bit more manageable.  The original recipe calls for half a Graham cracker, half a large marshmallow and a couple squares of Hershey bar.....when they are cooked they are about the size of  a small plate.  I found the original over at Picky Palate.  These are the perfect summer cookie since s'mores are the classic camping snack.

These aren't too fancy, but just a bit tricky to wrap the dough around. Just use your favorite chocolate chip cookie dough recipe, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips.  You can use big marshmallows, just cut them or you can use Hershey bars, but just use 1 square....unless you want to make them giant like she did at Picky Palate =) 

Layer your stuff
Smoosh the dough around so the cookie,marshmallow, and chocolate chips are completely covered.

Cook for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

Sorry, not a good picture of the inside because I took it after the cookie had cooled, but go check out Picky Palate's pictures....They are mouthwatering with their strands of marshmallow and chocolate oozing out....

Monday, June 24, 2013

Munchkin Monday: Banana Muffins

I love my kids, but I HATE feeding them. I am not creative when it comes to meals and snacks and we tend to get stuck in ruts where they eat the same 5 meals for weeks on end. While I have looked online (Pinterest) and there are amazing Mom's out there who put together amazing meals and take beautiful photo's of them, and while I can admire what they are doing, I need a more practical way for myself to plan meals. So I am making lists!! Yay me! One for breakfast, lunch, and snacks with recipes to go with. This way I can look at my lists before going shopping and buy accordingly and when I get home and can't think of anything to make I have a plan in place. Now my hope is to pass on my awesome lists to all of you out there but I want to test out some of the recipes first. Lets get started.

So first up is BREAKFAST! These muffins were so tasty that we made a batch two days in a row and my husband ate six for breakfast yesterday.

I adapted this recipe from you can find that link here.

This is my crazy cute helper for the day :)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In large bowl combine the flour, baking soda, sugar, and baking powder. In a separate bowl mix the bananas, egg, salt, and coconut oil. I think that using a potato masher is the best way to combine the banana mixture. Also if you would prefer you can use 1/3 cup of butter in place of the coconut oil.

Stir banana mixture into dry ingredients until just moistened. Its fine if its just a little lumpy looking.

Fill muffin cups 2/3 full. It took about 2 heaping tablespoons to fill my cups. (And yes they are left over from Easter) Sprinkle the extra sugar over the muffins. You don't need the extra sugar but I liked the little extra crunch it gave. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes.

All that is left to do is enjoy. These banana muffins have a satisfying texture that is not to dense and not to light. A wonderful fast and easy breakfast. You could mix it up and add a little cinnamon or some chocolate chips and they would store wonderfully in the freezer.  My only warning is that one batch only makes 15 muffins so make a double batch. You are going to need it. 

Banana Muffins


  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 cup sugar, plus a little extra for sprinkling on top
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In large bowl combine the flour, baking soda, sugar, and baking powder. In a separate bowl mix the bananas, egg, salt, and coconut oil. Stir banana mixture into dry ingredients until just moistened. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.
Sprinkle the extra sugar over the muffins. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

DIY Thursday: Lemon Suger Scrub

 This is WONDERFUL for summer! 
Get your skin nice and soft and those feet ready for flip flops. 
Lemon Sugar Scrub
1/2 cup. Coconut oil
1 1/2- 2 1/2 sugar
2-3 teaspoon lemon zest
8-10 drops lemon essential oil
*In a large bowl melt coconut oil 30 seconds or until liquid.
*Mix lemon essential oil and lemon zest with coconut oil
*Add sugar and mix until well combined. Start with 1 1/2 cup sugar and ass 1/2 cup until it reaches the consistency that you enjoy.
Tie some cute ribbon on them and give them as a gift or a thank you

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wild Card Wednesday: Dryer Balls

Want to reduce your costs and waste?? Here are dryer balls to enable you to get rid of your fabric softeners and dryer sheets. The dryer balls will also reduce your dry time and fluff your clothes. 
Have you ever wondered how safe your fabric softeners are?? Here is what Wikipedia has to say...Fabric softeners contain chemicals that impregnate fabric and are released over time. These chemicals may come in direct contact with the skin and may be absorbed or inhaled. Certain ingredients release formaldehyde, which has been linked to cancer in laboratory tests. Among other softener components are benzyl acetate (linked to pancreatic cancer), benzyl alcohol (an upper respiratory tract irritant), and chloroform (a neurotoxin and carcinogen). Some chemicals are neurostimulants or irritators and may be linked to central nervous system toxin exposure symptoms like headaches, disorientation, mood swings, numbness in face or extremities, memory loss, or irritability.
Most fabric softeners use petroleum-based chemicals which deplete a non-renewable source and are not easily bio-degradable.
Is that a good enough reason to get rid of the dryer sheets and fabric softeners?? 
If you need a reminder of how to make your own Laundry Soap check out our previous post here
1st step wind 100% Wool Yarn, and when you get to the desired size tuck loose end tight. You can wind the yarn around itself to start it or you can get a piece of extra fabric to start wrapping around 

2nd step, drop the ball into an old nylon and use yarn to tie the balls secure into the nylon. Make sure the balls are in there tight and can't move a lot so they will be tight and solid.  They will resemble sausage links. Then get the links soaked in water and toss into the dryer. The balls can be with other clothes or alone.  

Final product. The ball strands are felted together, and they won't come undone. Add a few drops of essential oil to ball for the fragrance of your choice.

If your ball isn't big enough you can wrap more yarn around and then dry the balls again.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

I wanted to make all three of my moms cookies for mothers day along with their presents.  Yes I have three mom's and I feel lucky.  I have my mom of course and two awesome mother in laws.  I also wanted to make a recipe I hadn't tried before.  I wanted something that I could use my vanilla that I got in mexico.  Yum! These cookies turned out great.  They were so soft and gooey.

Here is the website I got the recipe from. 

  • 2 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 & 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°. Grease or line baking pans.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Beat butter, cream cheese, sugar, and brown sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in vanilla.
Gradually add flour mixture, mixing until almost combined. Add chocolate chips, stirring until dough is thoroughly mixed.
Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto prepared pans. Bake 12-15 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. (These cookies will not brown like classic chocolate chip cookies.)
Cool cookies completely on pan on wire racks

Monday, June 17, 2013

Munchkin Mondays: Summer Fun at Station Park with Radio Disney

Hey everyone I just wanted to share this fun activity with you. Station Park in Farmington, Radio Disney, and  Macaroni Kid is teaming up this summer the first Monday evening of every month for Family First Mondays.

From 5:30pm to 7pm you can go enjoy free family fun. I haven't been to one yet but we are planning on being at the next one on July 1st for the Beach Party Bash! It would be fun to see you all there.

top image
The below came from the Macaroni Kid website. If you want to see more here is the link.

Radio Disney and Macaroni Kid are hosting Free Family Fun on the first Monday of every month in The Village at Station Park! 

July 1 Beach Party Bash
Aug 5 Planes’ Powwow
Sept 2 Sofia the First Shindig
Oct 7 Doc McStuffin Day

For all of you who have never seen or heard of Macaroni Kid it is a great website and group that keeps track of and creates fun activities for kids in the Farmington-Layton area. You can sign up to get a weekly e-mail from them listing all the activities in your area. Check it out and I hope I will see some of you there.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Foodie Friday: Great Grandma Clara's Spice Nut Waffles

Best waffles ever! They might take a little extra time but they are worth it.

I have one solid memory of my Great Grandma Clara, when I was about 6 years old. Sitting outside at a white metal table (the cute decorative ones that seat like four people) and looking at Clara, who I didn't know at all, sitting in her chair with tubes in her nose. That is it. But every time we eat her amazing waffles I send a little love up her way and thank her.

I haven't actually made this recipe before myself. I just haven't had to. It has been a staple at my Mom's house over the years, a go to for special occasion breakfasts. But just last Monday I made waffles out of a box and got to thinking. They were terrible. Really bad. Like fluffy cardboard. (Yes that is a thing.) I realized that I never made the waffles because my mom always said that they took a little extra time. So  I looked in my family cookbook and saw that the extra time she spoke of was whipping egg whites. Really Mom.... That's it? I will whip egg whites all day long as long as I don't have to eat cardboard waffles again. So here it is the extremely long and tedious process. (NOT!)

 Whip the egg whites. (Don't forget to save the yolks!)
 Mix together the dry ingredients.
 Add in the milk, egg yolks, and melted butter.
 Fold in the pecans and egg whites. (I used walnuts this time, any soft nut will work and be delicious.) For anyone who doesn't know, folding in the egg whites means mixing them as gently as possible so you lose as little of the air you whipped into the egg whites as possible. One technique is to drag your spatula through the middle of the bowl rotating it under the batter and then folding the batter over the top of the mixture. Continue until fully combined.
 I didn't put the nuts in till i cooked half the batter because my odd husband likes nuts but doesn't like nuts in things. (Weirdo) My waffles took about 3 1/2 min to cook but that will vary based on your waffle iron.
So delicious! I doubled my batch and cooked 24 waffle squares, so a single batch will do about 12.

Spice Nut Waffles

2 cups flour
3 T sugar
1 t salt
3 t baking powder
1 t nutmeg
1 1/2 t cinnamon
2 eggs, separated
1 3/4 cup milk
4 T melted butter
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

Whip egg whites stiff. Set aside. Mix dry ingredients. Add milk, melted butter and egg yolks. Fold in egg whites and chopped nuts gently. Cook in a piping hot waffle iron. Devour.

End of story...

P.S. If it was unclear in the recipe the big T is tablespoons and the little t is teaspoons.

This is a slightly embarrassing update and a little funny too. My big sister, after reading the blog, text-ed me to tell me that the memory I have couldn't have happened because Great Grandma Clara died before I was born. Apparently I was thinking of Great Grandma Helen. Well I was 6 what can I tell you... Anyway I still love her for her amazing food and Grandma Helen too.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

DIY Thursday: Fourth of July Wreath

I made this wreath last year.  It was my first wreath I ever made.  It was really easy and fun to make.  I love the combination of our nations colors.  All you need a foam wreath, white, blue, and red yarn, and white buttons.

Wrap blue around the wreath, then wrap white and red around the wreath.  Then glue the white buttons on. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Wildcard Wednesday: Hi I'm New!

Hey all. My name is Leanne Smith and the lovely and very Talented Terrace Girls have agreed to take me on as a guest poster to see if I am up to snuff to join the terrace gang. So hopefully in a month I will be a full fledged Terrace Girl but for now I am just a girl with a dream. A dream to share with all of you out there the pinspired (look I invented a word) and chaotic life I live.
So I am not a particularly crafty person. Like at all. Not a huge fan of ribbons and bows, I don't make any centerpieces for holidays. I would call myself a low budget huge impact crafter. I want the most bang (meaning tons of compliments) for the little buck that I am willing to spend.

I also tend to be a functional creator, I will always go for the idea that will make my life a little easier rather than the wreath that I will take out and use a month out of the year.

I am obsessed with caramel and will choose it over chocolate, peanut butter, or marshmallow any day of the week. (Teresa has been the willing recipient of many of my caramel experiments, and can vouch for me.)

And while I am currently in a house surrounded by boys, my two little monsters and their daddy, I currently am expecting a little girl. (Yay me!!) But I am a little scared. Having gotten very comfortable in the world of cars, trains, dragons, and dirt, I am not quite sure how to transition into bows and tutus. Hopefully being surrounded by these amazing women I will have the strength to find my inner princess, and be able to share with you some of my adventures on getting there.

Can't wait to share more with you and explore myself a bit also in the process.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Sweet Tooth Tuesday: Nutella Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

The other day when I was at Sam's Club I grabbed a big thing of Nutella.  I don't know why because I had never had Nutella before (yes, I have gone almost 30 years without trying it....)  Well...I tried and I liked it...big surprise, I'm sure.  The only problem is I have a huge thing of I am trying to find ways to use it.  I found this super yummy recipe...and I may have eaten half the cookie dough before it madeit to the oven.....

Chewy Nutella Peanut Butter Chip Cookies
  • ½ C butter, softened
  • ½ C brown sugar
  • ⅓ C sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ C Nutella
  • 1½ C all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ C peanut butter chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Lightly spray cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray or line with a baking mat.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars. Add in egg and vanilla and beat until creamy. Beat in Nutella until combined, scraping down sides as needed.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and beat until just combined.
  4. Stir in peanut butter chips.
  5. Drop by tablespoon full onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until edges are set. Centers will look slightly under done.
  6. Allow to cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Munchkin Monday: Tinkerbell Day


A few years ago  Last week my daughter LOVED Tinkerbell! So I decided to plan a play date with a friend to celebrate Tinkerbell! 

First thing I did was make each of the girls satin skirts with pointed bottoms to look like the bottom of Tinkerbell's dress. Cut the satin 2 times the width of your child's waist sew the back seam and the elastic casing at the top. When you cut the points for the bottom of the skirt you need to melt the edges so it doesn't fray. Light a candle and go to town melting the edges :)

Then I made a felt pouch to carry their fairy dust in. Strangely I had a couple of glass vials which I put glitter into. I just drew the shape of the pouch I wanted and then blanket stitched to outside edges.
Then the girls went outside and made fairy houses!

Watched the newest Tinkerbell movie.