Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!!!

Hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween.
Since we knew the girls would be loading up their bags with sugary treats, we decided to make some adult treats of our own.  I love caramel apples, but unfortunately they are terrible for your teeth and not the easiest thing to eat. I found this quick and easy recipe from Kraft for caramel dip and I have to say it’s just as good and so much easier to eat.
Creamy Caramel -Peanut Butter Dip
  • 2 or 3 apples
  • 25 Caramels
  • 2 tbl peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • chopped peanuts
  • mini chocolate chips
Melt the caramels, peanut butter and milk in the microwave for 2-3 minutes.
Slice apples and dip into melted caramel dip and cover with you favorite toppings!
Loved this little snack, it was the perfect amount of sweetness! We had some left over so I dipped some pretzels, I think these were my fav!
Then it was off for Trick or Treating, our town moved it up from 6pm to 5pm and with Daylight Savings Time being pushed back a week I have to admit it was a little strange going out in the daylight. But nonetheless the girls had a great time!
Jordyn was a cheerleader…
After Kailey realized she was not going to win the battle with me over dressing as Lady Gaga, she decided to go as a hobo. She did a great job of pulling this look together all by herself, another reminder that she is growing up and I am getting old. lol
Can’t forget the dogs…


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Pumpkin Guts N’ Glory

Large round slippery pumpkin + knife carving kit + 2 kids and 1 accident-prone husband = one very nervous mom.
Does this sound familiar to anyone? 
Today we finally helped let the girls carve the pumpkins, something they have been begging  us to do for the entire month…something I have been dreading the entire month.  I’ll take pumpkins guts all over the kitchen any day over a severed finger!
Dad is so thrilled with the guts, a surgeon he is not! I was very proud that not one power tool was pulled out for this project!
A man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do!
Miley never turns down an invitation for a taste…
Kailey is giving Miley and Maggie a lesson on how to not let the pumpkin roll off  your lap and stab yourself with a carving tool.
Jordyn is just beaming with pride that mom is letting her do it by herself….
…or not, hey she’s still my baby, she still lets me kiss her goodbye in front of her friends, brush her hair and help pick her clothes out. I’m milking this kid for all she’s worth!  :Winking smile
After an hour of listening to myself repeatedly say, “be careful”, “pay attention to what your doing”, “your head is going to roll” (I’ve always wanted to say that) I have to say that they did a darn good job, they still have all their fingers and my girls really ARE growing up and then it hit my, that can only mean one thing….I’m getting old! Sad smile
Can you see the resemblance?
Now for mom’s treat, roasted pumpkin seeds!!!! I love just plain pumpkins seeds with a little olive oil and salt.
Can you believe no one volunteered to wash the seeds?! 
No guts, no glory!
Boil the seeds in water for 10 minutes after de-gutting.
Pat them dry and coat with 1 tsp of olive oil and salt to your desire.
Roast in a 250 degree oven 1 hour, turning every 15 minutes.
Pop them in your mouth and call it a successful day! De-lish!


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Trick or Cake?

It’s October, right? Could have fooled me!
As I sat outside this morning, closing my eyes with the warm sun shining down I could have sworn that it was still August…

even though I could still smell Autumn in the air and hear the rustling of the leaves across the lawn.  Stay with me now, I was having a moment…
Then I opened my eyes and realized that Mother Nature has one sick sense of humor!!!!


Like it or not,  Old Man Winter is knocking at the door! Why not let him in and serve some cake!!!
OK, maybe not the cake you are thinking of but pretty darn close! The other day I came across this recipe on Stacey’s blog  for Maple Cinnamon Rustic Scones.  It only had a few ingredients and looked easy, so I gave them a try with a few variations. Click on the link above to see her recipe.

Here are a few of the ingredients:

Combine the dry ingredients:
  • 2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour (I added 1/4 cup more)
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon

Cut in 2 tbls. butter with a pastry blender until it just starts to resembles course crumbs

Add 1/2 cup milk ( I would have used buttemilk if I had it on hand), 2 tbls. maple syrup and I chose to add some diced apple. Do not over mix!

I chose to toast about a 1/4 cup of pecans and some wheat germ on the stove and added that to 1 tbl. brown sugar and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon for more of a crunchy topping.  

Divide the dough into four equal portions, place on the sheet pan, shape into whatever shape you desire and top with the pecan mixture. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 12-15 minutes.
Doesn’t this picture remind you of Shake N’ Bake chicken? lol
Trust me, it’s taste MUCH better! 

Mula! Doesn’t it look delicious? Too bad you can’t smell them, mmmm. This one didn’t even make it to the cooling rack, it went right from the oven to the plate for a quick picture, I couldn’t wait to devour it give it a try!

Want a bite?  Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it?!

Thank god it only makes 4.  I almost made them into little cookies, they would have definitely been gone before the kiddos came home! Winking smile

Thank you Stacey for sharing your recipe, I can picture  me making these with the girls on Sunday mornings!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Organizing Bug

Jordyn loves hanging around the kitchen while I am making dinner. Although I am completely flattered it makes me laugh because she hardly eats anything I make,  fussiest girl on earth. She loves how everything smells but taste is another story.
Anyways, last night she decided that our utensil drawer was a "disaster", yes that was exactly how she described it and I couldn’t agree with her more!  ;)
Poor girl doesn’t realized yet that at her tender age of 6  she has inherited mom's organizing gene. Even when she plays, she loves to sort things into piles and then putting them away they have to be in there own little containers. If your kids play with Barbie, Littlest Pet Shop or Polly Pockets you know exactly what I am talking about...tiny little shoes, pocketbooks and necklaces that are constantly getting lost! 
Her Barbie Dream House....spotless! The clothes are in the closet ON HANGERS!
DSC05320 DSC05322
And best of all she’s even decorated for the holidays! :D
So here’s my new utensil drawer a –la- Jordyn…
Mom, could you please close the drawer nice and easy so nothing will get messed up….even when you are mad”? I wanted to die of laughter! Yes, Jo I will try my hardest, thank you”.  lol
So in keeping with the theme today, I decided to clean and organize a couple more drawers. I can’t believe the things that have been hanging out in my KITCHEN!
Last year’s Halloween bracelet, hair accessories, snowman bubbles, tape measure?!  Seriously, this isn’t even my junk drawer!
                                   Here’s some before and afters….

Having clean organized drawers makes cooking that much more enjoyable, if I can only keep them this way! :)

Lastly since I didn’t do any cooking today I thought I’d share one of my new favorite snacks! Of course it includes pumpkin…
Kashi’s Pumpkin Spice Flax granola bar, mmmmm so delicious!

What are some strange and unusual things you have found in YOUR kitchen drawers?