Sunday, May 31, 2009

cosmopolitan Jell-O cups

This recipe was in the current issue of Food and Family and I thought it looked cool and refreshing. I was right! The dessert was well received and is definitely a keeper.
cosmopolitan Jell-O cups
1 (3 oz.) package Jell-o Strawberry flavor gelatin
1 cup orange sherbet
Cool Whip Whipped Topping (in a can)
1. Add 1 cup boiling water to gelatin mix in medium bowl; stir 2 minutes until completely dissolved.
2. Stir in sherbet until melted. Pour into 4 martini or wine glasses.
3. Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Top each with 1 Tbsp. Cool Whip just before serving. If desired, garnish with a lemon or lime twist. Enjoy!
I think it would be great with strawberry jello and pineapple sherbet too.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Show and Tell Friday, May 29, 2009

Today is Show and Tell Friday at Kelli's House. Please visit her blog to view more treasures!

About three weeks ago, I started knitting classes at our local yarn shop. The photo above shows my practice/learning piece. I've learned to cast on, knit and purl, and last night started ribbing. I'm feeling more confident each week and have decided to continue classes all summer long (and maybe beyond!) to keep my momentum going. The class instructor, Allena, is a very talented knitter and is very patient with me. I appreciate that! Visit her etsy shop at

The skeins of yarn above will be used for my first project a Booga Bag. It's a felted handbag. I'm excited to start that project next week and dream of making a few of them to give as Christmas gifts this year. Below is what the finished purse will look like, although my colors are a bit different.

Thanks for checking out my Show and Tell Friday!



Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Chicken Fajitas and Salsa Rice

Hola! It's Mexican night at our house. I'm going to share with you my favorite fajita recipe and the recipe for salsa rice, along with some photos. I envy those bloggers who always have a photo story to go with their recipes~so I thought I'd give it a try! It was quite an effort, but here is what I have:

Chicken Fajitas

The ingredients: cumin, salt, pepper, dry oregano, lime juice (fresh is the best) and olive oil.

Combine the ingredients in a ziploc bag. I put mine inside a bowl to give the bag some support. Then add four boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

Marinate the chicken breasts for 30 minutes on the counter or for up to 8 hours in the refrigerator. I always do it for at least an hour in the refrigerator.

About 30 minutes before grilling chicken, in a deep skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook for about 3 minutes, until softened, stirring often. Add the bell pepper and stir fry for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt, cover and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring once, until the peppers are crisp tender.

Here is our plate filled with the grilled chicken, which has been sliced cross-wise into strips, peppers and onions. I serve fajitas on tortillas with sour cream, cheese, and lettuce as toppings.

As a side, I made Salsa Rice. You can find the recipe here. It is so easy and so good too! I used Chi Chi's Fiesta Salsa in Medium.

Here's the recipe for the Fajitas:


3 Tablespoons fresh lime juice

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crumbled

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 small onion

1 large green bell pepper

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

8 flour tortillas, stacked and wrapped in foil

Toppings~cheese, guacamole, lettuce, sour cream

Make the marinade: In a zipper-type food storage bag, mix the lime juice, oil, garlic, cuming, oregano, salt and pepper. Add the chicken, seal the bag and turn until chicken is coated. Let marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature or for up to 8 hours in the refrigerator.

Meanwhile, slice a small onion and cut one large bell pepper into thin strips. In a deep skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook for about 3 minutes, until softened, stirring often. Add the bell pepper and stir fry for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt, cover and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring once, until the peppers are crisp tender. Spoon the mixture onto a serving platter and cover with foil to keep warm.

Heat foil wrapped tortillas in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes.

Grill chicken breasts on a gas grill for about 7 minutes each side, until juices run clear. Remove from grill and let stand for 3 minutes, then slice crosswise into thin strips. Add to serving platter with vegetable mixture.

To serve, remove the tortillas from the oven. Top the middle of each tortilla with chicken strips, pepper mixture and desired toppings. Fold the bottom of the tortilla to cover part of the filling, then fold in the sides.




Yellow Cake with Peanut Butter Icing

I found this recipe at Christy Jordan's Southern Plate when a friend asked for a yellow cake with Peanut Butter Icing. I made a Betty Crocker yellow cake with butter in the batter and it was the best yellow cake I've ever made from a mix. I highly recommend it. Then I topped it with this icing:

1- 1/2 C sugar
7 T milk
2 T Shortening
2 T margarine
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 C creamy Peanut Butter

Combine sugar, milk, shortening, margarine, and salt. Bring to a rolling boil in a heavy saucepan, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Once it reaches a boil, let boil for one or two minutes without stirring. Remove from heat and add vanilla and peanut butter. Beat until smooth and quickly spread onto cake.

Christy has some great step by step instructions, photos and a wonderful story to go with this recipe on her blog, if you'd like to check them out.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Our First Weekend at Camp

On Friday, we left for our first camping weekend of the summer season. We had a busy weekend at camp. We even had some excitement on Saturday when a major storm blew through the area when we were taking the boat out of the lake. It even hailed! We were all soaked to the skin by the time we got back to camp and so was everything on the deck! It took until Sunday afternoon for most of it to dry out and some of it was still wet. Here are some photos from the weekend:

Our dd posing for the camera.

Hosta in our garden at camp.

DS roasting a marshmallow.

Our campsite with the lights on.

My dh doing what he loves most~being on the boat!

DD all smiles on the boat!

Clouds forming over the lake.

Couldn't camp without taking a picture of Tortellini Antipasto Salad! ;0)
Thanks for checking out our weekend pictures!

Simple Woman's Daybook, May 25, 2009

For Today...

Outside my window... it is sunny and the temperature is a warm 61 degrees.

I am thinking...about what colors to use in my planters for this summer. Red is always my first choice.

I am thankful for...our jobs and the ability to provide for our family.

From the kitchen... chili dogs, yellow cake with peanut butter icing for a friend's birthday tomorrow.

I am wearing... my nightgown.

I am reading... Simple Abundance, the Bible and A Slice of Heaven by Sherryl Woods.

I am hoping... to get my pots filled with flowers today, as well as my Americana decor out for the summer.

I am creating... a knitted apple washcloth for ds's teachers. It will be my first real knitting project since starting classes.

I am hearing....the neighbor mowing her lawn and Canon in D on the real player. It always reminds me of walking down the aisle at our wedding.

One of my favorite backyard.

A few plans for the rest of the week...I am meeting with the consultant for a jewelry party I'm having in a few weeks. On Thursday, I have knitting class. Otherwise just the usual cooking, cleaning, teaching and loving that happens each week.

A picture thought: our weekend getaway

Read more daybooks at:

Have a week full of blessings,


Menu Plan Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day in the U.S.! Thank you to all of our service men and women for their sacrafices to keep America and Americans safe and secure.
Last week's menu included some new recipes. The Roast Beef Au Jus in the Crockpot was fantastic. I switched up a few things because we had Spiced Pork Chops instead of Grilled Pork Chops and Pizza Cheeseburgers instead of Cheeseburgers. Both were well received and yummy!
Here's this week's plan:
Sunday~ Grilled Kielbassi, Macaroni Salad and Tossed Salad at camp
Monday~Hot Dogs with Chili Sauce and Leftover Salads, Frosted Brownies
for dessert
Tuesday~Spaghetti with Meat Sauce, Garlic Toast and Tossed Salad
Wednesday~Chicken Fajitas and Salsa Rice
Thursday~Grilled Steak, Baked Potatoes, Grilled Vegetables
Friday~Pizza and Wing Night
Saturday~Graduation Party
View more great menus at
Have a week full of blessings!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, May 18, 2009

Welcome to another Menu Plan Monday!

Here's our plan for this week:

Monday~Grilled Cheeseburgers, Macaroni and Cheese, Baked Beans

Tuesday~Best Grilled Pork Chops, Rice Pilaf and Sugar Snap Peas

Wednesday~Chicken Cordon Blue, Olive Oil and Garlic Angel Hair, and Salad

Thursday~Meatball Hoagies and Chips (Knitting Night)

Friday~Stromboli with Sauce on the Side, Tossed Salad

Be sure to check out more menus at

Have a week full of blessings,


Friday, May 15, 2009

Show and Tell Friday, May 15, 2009

It's Friday and that means it is Show & Tell Friday at Kelli's House.

Today for show & tell I'm sharing this purse planter I purchased yesterday during our outing with dh. After lunch, we visited the local vo-tech horticulture class and purchased some of our plants for the patio and porch. When I saw this little purse filled with plants, I just had to have it! It was even discounted to seven dollars. Right now it is on the baker's rack on the patio, but it may move to the bistro set table on the porch.

Thank you for visiting my show and tell! Be sure to visit Kelli's House to view more treasures.



Monday, May 11, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook, May 11, 2009

For Today...

Outside my window... it is raining and the sky is gray.

I am thinking... that summer can't come too soon.

I am thankful for...the love of my husband.

From the kitchen... bbq chicken, baked potato salad and garlic toast

I am wearing... a sweatshirt, sweatpants and slippers.

I am reading... Simple Abundance, the Bible and Faith and Family magazine.

I am hoping... for nicer weather this weekend. We hope to set up camp on Saturday. I'm so ready for our weekends away.

I am creating... a birthday card for a friend.

I am hearing....John Mayer on the real player and chicken cooking on the grill.

One of my favorite things...sunshine!

A few plans for the rest of the week...I start knitting classes on Thursday. I'm excited about that. On Wednesday night, I am helping dh with his work banquet. Then, as I mentioned, we'll be setting up camp this weekend if the weather cooperates.

A picture thought:

Our birthday girl

Read more daybooks at:

Have a week full of blessings,


Menu Plan Monday, May 11, 2009

This week will be busy, but should be fun, too! I hope all the moms out there had a great Mother's Day. DD has her preschool screening this week. I'm helping out at DH's work banquet on Wednesday and starting knitting classes on Thursday evening. I can't wait! I don't know if I am coordinated enough to knit, but it's worth a shot to say that I tried. On Saturday, we're going to open up the camper and set up for the season. Can't wait! Only 18 more school days until vacation! WOO HOO!!
Here the menu plan for the week:
Sunday~Slow Cooker Sauce with Spaghetti and Veal Parmesan (dh made it for me!)
Monday~Stupid Easy Chicken Legs, Baked Potato Salad, Baked Beans
Tuesday~Meatloaf, Oven Potatoes, Green Beans
Thursday~Grilled Steaks, Baked Potatoes, Salad
Friday~Pizza and Wing Night
Saturday~Cheeseburgers, Pasta Salad and Veggies with Dip
Check out more menu plans at
Have a week full of blessings,

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Maddie's 4th Birthday

Our princess turned four today. We celebrated her day with her grandparents, godparents, family and friends. I can't believe she is four already! The time has gone by so quickly. Our girl is smart, funny, very active and full of smiles. She is a blessing to us.
I made mini sandwiches with chicken salad, ham salad and peanut butter and jelly. We also had fruit salad, cookies and assorted snacks. Of course, there was cake, cupcakes, and ice cream.
A swing set for the backyard was dd's birthday gift. Here she is gliding with her cousins.

Each year Maddie's grandma buys her a Precious Moments birthday figurine. This year's figurine is a little girl holding a baby doll.

Maddie loves this ladybug umbrella! (Isn't it cute?!)

Thank you for stopping by!



Sunday, May 3, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, May 4, 2009

Greetings menu planners and friends!
I can't believe it is the first week of May already. Summer is right around the corner and I just can't wait for it to arrive. Our weekend was nice. We attended my cousin's wedding on Saturday and accomplished quite a bit at home on Sunday. I'm in preparation mode for dd's 4th birthday on Saturday. We'll have about 12 guests for her Tinkerbell Party. I still have gift shopping to do, but am pretty well set on the food part and party supplies. I'll be sure to post lots of pictures!
Here's our menu plan for the week....
Sunday~Slow Cooker Meat Sauce over Spaghetti and Tossed Salad
Monday~Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs, Baked Macaroni and Cheese, Baked Beans
Tuesday~Cinco de Mayo!
Potluck Lunch at Work: Beefy Taco Dip (so good!)
Dinner: Chicken Soft Tacos, Salsa Rice and Fresh Fruit with Cinnamon Tortilla Chips
Wednesday~Kielbassi and Kraut on Rolls with Potato Salad
Thursday~Beef Patties in Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Corn
Friday~Pizza and BBQ, Garlic&Butter and Hot Wings
Saturday~Our precious girl's 4th Birthday Party! I'll post details soon!
Be sure to check out 100's of other menu plans at
Have a week filled with blessings,

Simple Woman's Daybook, May 4, 2009

For Today...

Outside my window... the sky is gray and the rain showers are falling. I long for sunshine after five days of cloudy skies.

I am thinking... about what to get the moms for Mother's Day. I think we're buying them hanging baskets for their porches, but I'd like to add something to that. Any ideas?

I am thankful for... my healthy children.

From the kitchen... BBQ Ribs in the slow cooker for dinner tonight. I'm making Beefy Taco Dip for our Cinco de Mayo luncheon this evening after dinner.

I am wearing... my robe and a towel on my head. My morning uniform, it seems.

I am reading... Simple Abundance, The Bible and the Pink Princess Tea Parties cookbook.

I am hoping... for sunshine on Saturday for dd's Tinkerbell Birthday Party.

I am creating... gift sets for ds's teachers for Teacher Appreciation Day tomorrow. I'd like to create a Mary altar for May so the kids can learn more about her.

I am hearing...Every Man by Casting Crowns on my real player and the coffee pot dripping.

One of my favorite things...quiet mornings with time for prayer, devotions and reflection.

A few plans for the rest of the week...I hope to visit my brother's new house. I have shopping to do for dd's 4th birthday this weekend. Hopefully we'll get more feedback from our builder, so then we can make more decisions. I plan to drop about 5 bags at Goodwill while I'm out and about too.

A picture thought:

Our kids and me on Easter Sunday

Read more daybooks at

Have a day full of blessings,