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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Monkey Bread...



When was the last time you made Monkey Bread?  Oh it's sooooo easy and sooooo fun to make and soooooo yummy!!!!

We had it for breakfast this morning and my girls (who are 10 and 6) cut the biscuits, rolled them in sugar and cinnamon, and placed them in the greased bundt pan.  I melted the butter and brown sugar and poured it over the top then popped them in the oven.  Super easy!!

WARNING: The wait for these to bake seems like EONS when you start smelling the cinnamon from the oven!!!!!!!!!!

Here's our recipe...



Monkey Bread

1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 (16 oz) cans jumbo flaky biscuits
1 cup brown sugar (firmly packed)
3/4 cup salted butter

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Greased bundt pan. 

In a gallon size plastic zip bag, put in white sugar and cinnamon and mix.  Open biscuit cans (this always scares me when they pop!!!) and cut each biscuit in 4 pieces.  Place all the cut pieces in the zip bag and toss to coat all the pieces with sugar and cinnamon then carefully put the pieces in the bundt pan.  

On the stove, melt butter and stir in brown sugar.  Bring to a boil and stir well.  Pour over the top of the biscuits in the bundt pan.  

Put bundt pan in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.  When done baking, take out of oven and let stand for 10 minutes before turning out of pan.  Turn out onto a plate and then pick off the pieces you want to eat- like little monkeys picking at their food!!  FUN!!!!!


This is a fun recipe to make with children.  Let them use butter knives or even plastic knives to cut the biscuits!!  Let them toss the cut biscuits with the sugar/cinnamon mix!!!  Will it get messy?  LOL Probably.  But will they have a wonderful time and laugh and make memories? OH YES!!!!!!

So, what are you waiting for??????  Go make some Monkey Bread and make some memories!!!



Sunday, March 19, 2017

Scripture Sunday... 3.19.17...



The conclusion, when all has been heard, isfear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.  For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.

Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Thai Peanut Chicken...


Any of y'all LOOOOOVE Asian inspired dishes?  ME! ME! ME!!!!!  This dish definitely hit the Asian spot for me AND it was full of yummy veggies!!!  Double thumbs up!!!

I shared last week that I was going to be making Healthy Thai Peanut Chicken Zucchini Noodles for dinner last week.  And we did.  And, as is my usual style, I HAD to change things around.  Surely y'all do that, too?  You want to make it exactly like your family likes!! 

I linked above to the original recipe, so here's my final recipe.  Yum.

Thai Peanut Chicken
(serve 5)

2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T fresh ginger, minced
6 tablespoons peanut butter
1 T rice wine vinegar
1 lime, zested and juiced
4 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons refined coconut oil (the kind that doesn't taste like coconut)
2 cups chicken breast, oven roasted and sliced
1 1/2 t sesame oil
4 zucchini, spiral sliced
2 red peppers, julienned
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup green onions, diced


Add the garlic, ginger, peanut butter, rice wine vinegar, lime juice and zest, and soy sauce to a small bowl and mix together. Heat a large sauté pan and add coconut oil. Stir in chicken and sesame oil and heat chicken through.  
Stir in the zucchini and bell peppers and cook until tender, maybe 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally (I used tongs for this.) Stir in the sauce, cilantro and green onions and toss together until all warmed through.


I really liked this!!  I've enjoyed using zucchini noodles in several dishes we've tried and they were super delicious in this!  Even Mr U (who does not care for zucchini noodles) DID like this and said he'd have it again!! WOOOHOOO!!!  Now THAT'S how I know a recipe is a keeper!! 



In case anyone is unfamiliar with how to julienne vegetables, this video show how to julienne a bell pepper.  :)



Monday, March 13, 2017

Happy Homemaking Monday... March 13, 2017...




Happy Homemaker Monday is hosted by Diary of a Stay at Home Mom

I am also linked up with Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday and 
The Art of Homemaking Mondays at Strangers and Pilgrims.




The weather:::
COLD!!!! Dreary, too.  I don't love overcast days.  It's been so warm lately that it's kind of surprising to have a  cold morning!! High today is only expected to be 42!  We didn't get snow like some of our friends in northern states, but we did get cold temps!!!!  Just when we were confident we were done with cold!!!



On my reading pile:::
Honestly?  I have one more chapter of The Excellent Wife.  JUST ONE!!!  I got behind because I read a book for a review for the past week and a half.  So I MUST finish The Excellent Wife today!!  :)



Movies or Shows I watched this weekend:::
We watched a new-to-us veterinary show.  Mr U really likes shows about Alaska and the girls really love shows about animals, so he found Dr Oakley, Yukon Vet.  We only saw one episode, but the three of them liked it!! (I'm more of a Fixer Upper and Pioneer Woman kind of girl! HA!)


On my TV:::
Nothing planned for TV today, but we may watch Bob Ross via youtube during lunch.  He's so calming and WOW he was talented!!!!!



On the menu for this week:::

M- Chicken Cheddar hoagies, green beans
Tu- Spaghetti and Meatballs, salad
W- Easy Bacon Cheeseburger Soup, rolls
Th- Eggroll in a Bowl (I always double it because we LOOOOOVE it!!!)
F- Corned beef, cooked cabbage, mashed potatoes- St Patrick's Day!!



On my to do list:::
School.  Laundry.  Clean bathrooms (on Mondays).  Finish The Excellent Wife.  And OH!!!!!  Good Morning Girls started up again today!! So YAY!!!  We're in Luke this session!!!!!



Looking forward to:::
For the third week in a row, Mr U is scheduled 8-5 Monday through Friday!! WOOOHOOOOOO!!!!  This is the last week he is teaching training, so I'd better enjoy this schedule!!!!  :)  I LOVE him being home EVERY evening for dinner!!! 


Looking around the house:::

I see school bookshelves that need tidying.  How do they get messed up so quickly??? Also, I need to go bleach my kitchen washcloths.  I love white kitchen washcloths for the very reason that I can bleach them when they are stained or start smelling not so fresh.  



From the camera:::
My 10 year old making pizza dough all by herself!!!  It was perfect!!!!  




What I'm wearing today:::
Denim skirt. Again.  I LOVE wearing denim skirts because they go with everything. Also a maroon colored top with 3/4 sleeves with a black lightweight jacket on top.  LOL  Since I mentioned it was cold, you'd think I'd just put a sweater on!!  Ha!! And slippers.  THESE!!! LOOOOOOOVE!!!!!!!


One of my simple pleasures:::
Hot cup of coffee (well, two, actually) in the morning in the still, quiet house as I read the Word.   



Bible verse, Devotional::: 
For nothing will be impossible with God.
Luke 1:37

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Scripture Sunday...3.12.17...



Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Ephesians 4:1-3

Saturday, March 11, 2017

The High Calling of Motherhood... book review...





Does motherhood matter?


Wow that grabs your attention!!!  Does what you're doing day in and day out REALLY matter?  You've dreamed your whole life of being a mother and here you are simply overwhelmed by all that it entails.  


The High Calling of Motherhood is a soon to be released  book by Chimene Shipley Dupler (who also heads the ministry passion4moms.org) that is all about the beauty of motherhood.  I was able to preread this book this past week and there’s a lot of great information and encouragement in here!!!


My favorite quote from the book is, “The role of motherhood has been devalued in our society, which only complicates the inner turmoil moms struggle with today.  The high calling of motherhood has been abandoned.  We no longer value and esteem mothers and the impact they contribute to society as we are raising up the next generation.  Our culture has encouraged us to dismiss any inconvenience, whether through divorce, abortion, or even denying the time it takes to be intentional in our parenting.  We keep ourselves busy and our kids in activities so that we don’t have to invest in our children’s lives.  Anything that requires work or sacrifice is not valued in our society unless it provides satisfaction or recognition.  This has become the norm. “ (p27-28)



Chimene also does a beautiful job of always pointing the reader back to Jesus.  She encourages and reminds us to pray for our children.  She also admonishes us to remember that God is sovereign, that He alone has supreme authority. Reminders all Christians need as it is so easy to look inward instead of looking to the Cross.


"Don't discard what God has given you, thinking that the role of motherhood is an insignificant or unworthy career." (p 220)

Need encouragement in mothering?  The High Calling of Motherhood, which will be out May 2017 but you can preorder now, may be just the refreshment you need.  



Chimene's social media information is: 
www.facebook.com/passion4moms 
www.facebook.com/chimeneshipleydupler 
www.twitter.com/chimenedupler
www.instagram.com/passion4moms
www.instagram.com/chimeneshipleydupler

And lastly, the book is available for pre-order on:
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Calling-Motherhood-Chimene-Shipley-Dupler/dp/1620205823
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-high-calling-of-motherhood-chimene-shipley-dupler/112581995
Ambassador's online retail store: https://squareup.com/store/ambassador-international/item/the-high-calling-of-motherhood {use code “HighCalling” entered at time of purchase for a 10% pre-order discount}

DISCLOSURE- I received an advanced copy of this book to review.  Any opinions are just that- my opinions. :)

Friday, March 10, 2017

How I ripened an avocado...


So last night we were having taco salad for dinner.  I LOVE taco salad, especially with yummy, creamy avocado mixed in!!!!

I pulled out my avocado I purchased Monday.  It wasn't ripe when I bought it, but I figured it would ripen by tonight.  WRONG!!  It was still hard!!  Not "hard as a rock" hard, but definitely NOT SOFT!!!

WHAT DO I DO???

I remember someone telling me years ago that you could wrap an avocado in aluminum foil and bake it in the oven at 200 degrees for 10-15 minutes.  So I heated the oven up, washed the avocado, then wrapped it up in aluminum foil.  I put it in the oven, knowing full well I was completely wasting my time and my beloved taco salad would be minus the avocado tonight.

WRONG!!!

After 15 minutes, it was SOFT!!!  Not squishy soft, no, but soft enough for me to cut easily with a knife.  Mmmmm. I spooned it onto my taco salad along with Mr. U's and Elizabeth's and we enjoyed our meal!!

Who would've thought this would work?  Not me!  Glad I finally tried it!!  But, to be perfectly honest, I'd much rather have it already completely soft and ripe.  However, in a pinch, YEP I'll heat up the oven again!!

Happy Friday!!

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

The Secret to Cleaning Big Bathtubs...








What's the first word you think of when you see a big bathtub?  Sure, some of us think, "Calgon take me away!!" or "Relaxation!!" or maybe even, "Light a candle and leave me alone!!".  But not me.  Nope. And I'd venture to guess I'm not the only one who does not have pleasant dreams of a big bathtub in their home.

The first words out of my mouth when I saw the big tub in our home pre-purchase?  "I am NOT gonna clean that huge thing!!!" It's a back breaking job to clean a tub THAT huge!!  I'm sure y'all understand.  Do YOU have an easy time of cleaning big garden tubs?



I was venting my frustration to a lady at church one day a few years ago and she said, "Do what I do- use a sponge mop."

I sat silent.

Whoa.

Game changer.





And she was RIGHT!!!  I found this Libman mop and WOOHOOOO away I clean!! It's way faster and gets the job done nicely!!  I've been using it for our big garden tub and the girls' shower/tub combo, too!!  Sooooo much easier to clean with this!!!

So if cleaning that big bathtub is a thorn in your side like it was mine, seriously consider getting a Libman mop like mine!!!

Monday, March 06, 2017

Happy Homemaker Monday... March 6, 2017


Happy Homemaker Monday is hosted by Diary of a Stay at Home Mom

I am also linked up with Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday and 
The Art of Homemaking Mondays at Strangers and Pilgrims.



The weather:::
It's cool-ish outside right now.  Partly cloudy today.  Why don't they ever say "partly sunny"?  That'd be soooooo much more optimistic!!  :)



On my reading pile:::
Today I'm focusing on reading for school which will entail The Adventures of Peter Cottontail and vol 2 of The Boxcar Children.



Movies or Shows I watched this weekend:::
VICTORIA!!!!!!!!!!!  Oh how I LOVE this miniseries!!!!!

We also watched Return to Mayberry. We are big Andy Griffith fans here (well, I love Aunt Bee the most) and the girls have been wanting to see Barney marry Thelma Lou. :)



On my TV:::
Nothing for TV planned today.  We may watch a show (Dr Pol??) with Mr U tonight. We MAY watch a Jamerrill Stewart Youtube video during lunch if the school day progresses with good attitudes.  My girls LOVE watching her family in the videos.  Always a fun reward. 



On the menu for this week:::

My normal grocery shopping day is Saturday but we didn't go Saturday!!  Mr U usually works, but he was off so we decided to all be together instead.  I will go to the grocery store today. 

M- Buffalo Chicken Dip with celery, cucumbers, and chips to dip with
T- Chicken Cheddar Hoagies and salad (ended up not happening last week)
W- church meal
Th- taco salad



On my to do list:::
Today?  Groceries.  School.  Laundry.  Clean bathrooms



What I am sewing, crocheting, knitting or creating:::
Still working on my crocheted dishcloth.  I have to say that as I've gotten older and my eyesight started to change (y'all know- needing those reading glasses now!!!), crocheting has taken me longer.  :(



Looking forward to:::
Mr U having a great work schedule again this week!!!  Normally he has crazy retail hours, but last week and this week have been 8-5!! WOOHOO!!!  I'm going to enjoy it!!



Looking around the house:::

I have lovely vacuum lines from a new vacuum cleaner!!! (Hmmm I'll have to share about that this week!!). I was so excited about it that I vacuumed again this weekend!! OOOOOOH I've missed the vacuum cleaner lines!!!



From the camera:::
I've been searching for 18 years for the perfect homemade pizza crust!!  This MAY be it!! I'll have to make it again to verify.  It was YUMMMMMMY!!!



What I'm wearing today:::
Denim skirt with a black knit top.  Very simple.  I'll probably end up with a lightweight jacket on later if the house stays cool.  Oh and at home ALWAYS slippers.  



One of my simple pleasures:::
Listening to classical music.  



Bible verse, Devotional::: 


Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You. Psalm 119:11




Hope y'all have a wonderful Monday!!!  

Sunday, March 05, 2017

Scripture Sunday...3.5.17...



 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." 

John 14:6

Friday, March 03, 2017

Friday Favorites... My favorite blender in the universe!!!





Two years ago Mr U bought me a REAL blender!!  I had used a super cheap blender before, but it hardly chopped ice and would stop blending anytime I ever added frozen strawberries.  A HUGE pain when trying to make a smoothie.  This Blendtec is WONDERFUL!!!!!  It easily blends ice cubes and makes frozen strawberries disappear in seconds with no effort.  I've made tons of sauces and soups and even cake batter- all mixed in my Blendtec!!!! (In this pic, I had just made my favorite- Snickers Smoothie!!)


And guess what?  After two years of use, I watched as my beloved Blendtec went from 999 to 1000 uses!!!!  And it still works just as great as it did the first time I used it!!!  






I researched several blenders before deciding on the Blendtec, but I am so so glad I chose this one (and yes, just like the link goes to, I got the Certified Refurbished blender, too!!!)

If you're in the market for a new blender, I HIGHLY recommend the Blendtec!!! 


Wanna know the thing that convinced me Blendtec was the one for me?  This video!!!

Happy blending!!




(This is my own personal opinion.  Links, however, do go to my Amazon affiliate account)

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

The BEST banana bread....





The BEST Banana Bread

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream
2 medium bananas, mashed

Grease a 9x5 loaf pan. In a large bowl, stir together the melted butter and sugar. Gently stir in the eggs and vanilla and mix well. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt, stir into the butter mixture until smooth. Last, fold in the sour cream and bananas. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool loaf in the pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.



This is seriously the best banana bread we've ever had.  Let me know if you make it.  WARNING: It will NOT last long in your home!!!!


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