Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Quick and Gooey Breakfast Roll Ups

Oh where to even begin!!  It's been a week since I've written and it has been a busy one!!  Mother's Day weekend is always busy for us as we like to make time to visit with all of our families!  Mother's Day has quickly become one of my most favorite holidays....and maybe that's silly. Growing up, we usually celebrated Mother's Day for my Mom with breakfast in bed, homemade cards, flowers, gifts and the usual stuff Mom's love.  It was never that big of a deal for us, but I could tell that my Mom always loved it.  Now that I have a family of my own, I realize how special it is.  To take a second and realize how much my life has changed since I've had my little ones, to get to celebrate the family that my husband and I have created, the life that we live, it really is a special day.  (And you KNOW we so enjoy getting pampered after all the hard work we do all year!)  Let's face it, being a Mom is TOUGH and it's nice to have a whole day devoted to us! :)  So I thoroughly enjoyed the breakfast that I woke up to Sunday Morning, fixed by my wonderful husband, the cards (especially the one that Lily decorated herself!)  and I wasn't complaining about the brand new Vera Bradley purse and wallet either! I was quite spoiled this year, but none of the gifts compared the the time that I enjoyed spending with my a family.  <3  It was truly a wonderful Day and I have MUCH to be thankful for!

That same weekend, we were lucky enough to get to have some family photos taken.  Charlie's first birthday is in a week (Oh my goodness!!!) and I wanted to have some pictures taken.  Matt's cousin, Kelly, has been taking photography classes and has a wonderful blog (check it out HERE!! It's fantastic!!) and she was kind enough to take time out of her Saturday to come take some pictures for us! She did an absolutely fabulous job with the pictures and we are just THRILLED with them!!  Here's a few of my favorites :)

My husbands birthday was a couple of weeks ago and I've been meaning to share the recipe for the birthday breakfast I made for him.  Have you ever noticed how there is a FINE LINE between breakfast and dessert?   Think about the cinnamon rolls, french toast, monkey bread, turnovers...they are all almost nearly dessert.  This recipe is one of those...You could really add a scoop of ice cream to the side and it would make a great dessert!!  My Mom made these a few years ago for a family get together and my husband went crazy over them.  The only difference between mine and hers is that I coated mine in cinnamon and sugar.  She makes a glaze out of milk, vanilla and confectioners sugar.  You can top them that way and add a few walnut pieces if you'd like!  There are a lot of great ways to make this, but try them out and I know you'll love them!!!

Quick and Gooey Breakfast Roll Ups

2 (8ct.) packages crescent rolls
16 large marshmallows
1 c. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon (or to taste!)
1 stick butter, melted

Mix cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl.  Roll one marshmallow in melted butter and then in cinnamon-sugar.  Place marshmallow at the large end of a crescent roll and roll up.   Tuck in ends and pinch seams closed.  Dip crescent roll in butter and then in cinnamon-sugar mixture.  Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining marshmallows and crescent rolls.  Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes and Enjoy!!!!

find this recipe and lots others at the gooseberry patch recipe roundup!

Time for me to hop off this computer and get the kiddos ready for bed.  (It feels so strange to be writing so late!) I hope you all had a fantastic Mother's Day weekend!!  

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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Easy Cheesy Nachos and my Spring Garden

Good Morning!  Don't you just love this time of year? The grass is green, the sun is shining, the flowers are blooming!  It's beautiful!  I spent some time this past weekend working out in the gardens, and I just love looking out the windows and seeing the flowers bloom.  I especially love getting to have my daughter helping me as well :)  She's such a little nature girl, she just loves to be outside, digging in the dirt and playing in the grass.  This year, she's getting her own garden.  We're putting in a raised bed just for her to plant whatever she wants.  She can weed it, water it, and watch it grow all on her own! I'm so excited for her :)

One of my favorite parts about spring and summer is the lighter fare when it comes to cooking. Winter, I tend to do a lot of down home cookin'. Meats and potatoes, breads and so forth.  In the summer we do a lot more finger foods, fish, and vegetables.  I thought I'd go ahead and share with you one of my favorite summer recipes.  This nacho recipe always brings back a lot of memories for me.  Growing up, my family had a pool in our backyard.  Lunches were often eaten outside on the patio by the pool and it was often something we could eat with our fingers without a lot of mess.  My Mom made these nachos all the time and it was always my favorite lunch!  She used to make them using round tortilla chips and spread the beans on with a knife.  I modified it a bit to make it even more finger friendly :)  My daughter and husband both give these a thumbs up!  They'd make a great snack, appetizer or light lunch, and the best part is that you can modify it easily to your own taste!  Make as little or as much as you want and Enjoy!

Easy Cheesy Nachos

Scoop Style Tortilla Chips
1 can refried beans
1 can red enchilada sauce
1-2 cups shredded mexican, cheddar or cheese of your choice
optional: banana peppers

Line one or two baking sheets with tin foil, depending on how many you want to make.  Arrange chips on the baking sheets.  Spoon a teaspoon of refried beans into each scoop.  Top with enchilada sauce. Sprinkle on cheese and place one banana pepper on each nacho, if you're using.  Bake at 350 for 5-10 minutes or until cheese gets melty!  Serve immediately :) 

find this and lots of other great recipes at this weeks recipe round up!

Here's a couple of pictures of my garden so far this year too!  I don't know what I'd do without my little helper!! :) 

Lily getting ready to help me weed

lavender, autumn seedum, peonies and coral bells 

freshly planted pink and white begonias :) 

My little man is waking up from his nap, so it's time for me to sign off.  I hope you all have a wonderful, beautiful day!!!

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Thursday, May 3, 2012

Summertime Sweet Tea

It is a gorgeous, hot, sunshiney day here in Ohio and it feels like summer.  So much, that as I write you now, I'm in a chaise lounge on my deck soaking up some Vitamin D.  The little ones are napping and dreaming, I'm sure, of spending the evening playing outside, and my husband is away at a Cubs game this afternoon....this means quiet time for Mommy!

What is it about Summer that brings on this blissful, excited feeling?  Growing up, summer meant freedom!  No school, nothing that had to be done immediately, it was just a time for fun and relaxing. Trips to the beach, the park, swimming, sleepovers, cookouts and a million other fun things.  Now, as an adult with children, it's so much more.  It's bare feet in the grass, tricycles, drippy popsicles, baby pools and sprinklers, picnics, ice cream cones, and quiet nights on the deck with my hubby after the kids go to sleep. It's the summer sounds of crickets chirping, lighting bugs in the dark, the smell of cut grass and blooming flowers; it's digging in the dirt, watching vegetables grow, weeding, planting, mulching, and stepping back to see what your hands have done. Summer is all of these things and so much more, how can we not love this easy-breezy, sweet time of year?

As much as I love the nesting, and homey-ness of Fall and Winter, I love the fun and excitement of summer.  There is always something fun to do, and you never have to worry about the weather. It's such a great time to get together and spend time with your friends and family.  I LOVE having cookouts here at our home...our house is so small that it's hard for us to entertain when we have to stay indoors.  When it's warm, we have the big deck in the backyard that's great for holding lots of people, and we have (of course!) a million toys for the kiddos to keep them happy.

Along with all seasons (when you're a foodie like me!) there are certain food that remind me of summer.  Of course anything barbecued or grilled is going to immediately take you back to those hot nights sitting at your patio table with sticky fingers and a full belly.  One of the things that makes me think of summertime most - though - is Sweet Tea.  This is kind of a new thing for me, I haven't always liked tea, but in the past few years I've learned to LOVE it!  I drink tea in the mornings mostly, hot, but this sweet tea recipe has quickly become my favorite...and it's helping me to get past my nasty Diet Dr. Pepper habit (sort of ;) My Mom actually called me asking for this recipe today so I thought it was the perfect time to share it!

Summertime Sweet Tea

I did a bit of searching a while back and happened across this recipe.  For the original, click here :) 

a pinch of baking soda**
6 tea bags
2 c. boiling water
3/4 c. sugar
6 c. cool water

Sprinkle baking soda into the bottom of a large heat-proof pitcher.  Add in tea bags and cover with boiling water.  Let steep for 15 minutes. Remove tea bags and add in sugar, stirring well until dissolved.  Mix in cool water and refrigerate until chilled. 

**don't skip the baking soda!  It adds to the smoothness of the tea and helps to remove the "bitter" flavor of the tea.  Just a little goes a long way!

I hope you all enjoy this summer weather if you're getting it where you are!!  Fix yourself a glass of tea and soak up some sun (preferably with a good book in your hand as well!)  Have a fabulous day!!

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