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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Chocolates....




Some people call these No Bake Cookies or even Boiled Cookies (which sounds so gross to me!!!!), but we've called them Chocolates (pronouncing the end like "latte") since I first made them in 1999!  EONS ago!!

Mr. U got this recipe from a church where he was associate pastor long before we ever met.  The sweetest church secretary, Mrs. Hortense, insisted he have this recipe before he move to his first pastorate. She knew how much he loved them.  She's gone to be with the Lord since then, but her memory remains each time we make these cookies.  

Chocolates
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup peanut butter
3 cups uncooked oats

Mix first four ingredients together in a sauce pan and bring to boil for 1 minute. Take off the heat and stir in peanut butter and then oats. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto wax paper or parchment paper.

You are supposed to wait until they are completely cooled before you eat them, but I LOVE them when they are warm and gooey. :) Mr. U likes to put them in the refrigerator and eat them the next day, however. People usually leave these at room temperature, but you eat them however your family likes them best!!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Homemaking Inspiration...





I LOVE a clean and tidy home.  My home is FAR from perfect and I'm always searching for new ideas to organize as well as new inspiration to keep on decluttering!!!

Y'all, I happened upon a beautiful home and the homemaker has made several videos sharing how she keeps her home- sooo  many ideas and such inspiration!!

Her name is Allison and her videos are at Cultivating the Kingdom.  She calls it a Theological Home Tour and she shares all the "whys" behind why she has decorated and organized like she has. GREAT ideas!!

Hope y'all enjoy the videos as much as I have.  :)






Sunday, January 29, 2017

Scripture Sunday...



"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULSFor My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
-Jesus in Matthew 11:28-30 

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Today in my home...





Happy Chinese New Year!!!!!  For anyone new to my blog, we brought our oldest daughter home from China in 2007.  Each year we get together we fellow China adoption families and have a big meal to celebrate Chinese New Year.  It's a fun time for us to see friends- old and new.  

So, that said, today we will be meeting friends for lunch.  :)  We also will do our weekly grocery shopping.  I usually grocery shop on Saturdays.  We do the bulk of our shopping at Aldi and then stop by Publix to pick up anything that Aldi doesn't have. 

I work on my grocery list for the upcoming week either Friday night or Saturday morning.  I keep a running list during the week so that I can add to it whenever we run out of something and I know I need to pick it up.  So making the grocery list consists of listing the meals I plan to prepare for the upcoming week and listing the ingredients needed for those

I also need to spend some time decluttering our school area.  It's actually in the dining room of our home and it's become quite the dumping area for our books, papers, toys, crafts.  UGH!!  I need to measure and figure out what kind of shelves I can get to make it a little more tidy and functional (which probably means a trip to Ikea soon! YAY!).

And, in case you didn't notice, I GOT A BLOGGY MAKEOVER!!!!!  I found the cute design online and Mr U set it up for me. YAY!!!  A makeover was looooooong overdue here! I'm so excited! This design makes me SMILE!!!!


Friday, January 27, 2017

BBQ chicken sandwich and coleslaw...



Busy days call for quick meals!!  We've made this a hundred times and we still love it!!!  I put the chicken in the crockpot, and my 6 year old quickly helps me mix up the coleslaw (it's better after it's been sitting in the fridge for several hours!!!).  Easy and delicious meal for the busy days.


BBQ Chicken Sandwich

3 pounds chicken 
1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce 
Hamburger buns (we love them slightly toasted!!!)

Place chicken and about a cup of the BBQ sauce 
in the crockpot on low 7 hours or high 4 hours. 
Just before serving, take the chicken out and shred 
with a fork.  Stir it back into any sauce that's still 
inside the crockpot.  When plating, add extra sauce 
to the meat mixture or just add extra sauce to each 
sandwich as you fix them.  


(Got extra BBQ chicken?  Make BBQ chicken pizza!!!  Once your pizza dough is rolled into place, spread a layer of BBQ sauce on and then top with BBQ chicken, thinly sliced red onions,  fresh or pickled thinly sliced jalapeños, and your favorite cheese (I'd use extra sharp cheddar!!).  Serve more BBQ sauce with the pizza in case anyone else wants to add more.)


Coleslaw  


  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 T distilled white vinegar
  • 2 1/2 T lemon juice
  • 16 oz bag pre shredded coleslaw mix


  • In a large bowl, mix together sugar, salt, pepper, milk, mayonnaise, vinegar, and lemon juice.  Carefully stir in pre shredded coleslaw mix.  Mix well.   Store in the fridge at least 3 hours before serving.  






Monday, January 23, 2017

Happy National Pie Day 2017!!!!





Did it sneak up on you?  National Pie Day!!!  YAY!!  A reason to make pie!! 

This year's pie is a very easy my-children-can-make-it-all-by-themselves chocolate pie.  And yes, my girls made it.  :)

Easy No Bake Chocolate Pie
1 box instant chocolate pudding
1 3/4 cup milk
graham cracker pie crust
whipped topping
chocolate shavings

Mix the chocolate pudding and 1 3/4 cup of milk.  Whisk together very well for about 2 minutes until pudding starts to thicken.  Pour into pie crust and let chill at least an hour.  When ready to serve, top with as much whipped topping as you like, sprinkle with chocolate shavings, slice, and enjoy!!!


We celebrated (and blogged!!!) National Pie day in 2009 and 2011.  Yummy days for sure!!


Are YOU celebrating National Pie Day in your home? If so, what did you make? Please share!!


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Sunday Night Biscuits...





 I haven't been making biscuits nearly as often as I used to.  The family still loves them just as much, so why not?  I've gotten lazy!!  I'd MUCH rather my family eat homemade biscuits over store bought stuff any day of the week (though, truth be told, that does happen!!!).  Homemade biscuits are so easy to make, they're budget friendly, too!!  Sooo I've decided that I'll make 12- 15 on Sunday nights and put them in the freezer. That way, we can pull them out for a quick breakfast or snack or even use them for sandwiches. 

My recipe for Easy Homemade Biscuits.

I always ALWAYS use a pastry blender when making biscuits.

It helps to have a helper in the kitchen, you know.  :)



 When cleaning up the mess from making biscuits, I've found it VERY helpful to use a dough scraper.  It helps scrape up all the flour and dough scraps from the area on the counter you've made your biscuits on. 

Another way we LOOOVE to use our homemade biscuits is in this yummy recipe- Chicken and Ham "Pot Pie"

Sooo do y'all make homemade biscuits? Do you even LIKE biscuits???  It can't be just a Southern thing, can it??  :)










Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Weekly Cleaning Routine....






(LOVE my little lady with a broom or what????)

I've posted before about my weekly cleaning routine, but as we all know, life changes. :)  So from time to time, a homemaker may need to revamp her routine to make it easier AND so that she can teach her children to clean, as well. :)

With this being a fresh new year, I decided it was a good time to switch things up.  Here's how I'm handling things here... for now. :)

Monday- bathrooms, launder clothing
Tuesday- dusting, launder towels
Wednesday- vacuum, launder sheets, bath mats, shower curtain liner
Thursday- mopping (including bathrooms), launder clothing
Friday- catch up, launder towels
Saturday- groceries
Sunday- REST!!

(I got the basic idea from Becky at CleanMama.  She has an AWESOME site!!!)

I have daily chores, as well.  You know, things that must be done every day or the whole house will end up looking like a pigsty!!!!  

-Make beds (but air your rooms out first!!!)
-take care of mail as soon as it comes in the door
-wipe counters in kitchen as I cook
-sweep floors
-tidy school room at the end of each school day (not clean it, just tidy it- put stuff back where it belongs)


Thursday, January 12, 2017

Homemade all purpose cleaner...





I've been making my own homemade cleaners for a few years now.  It originally started with me wanting something more natural so that it wouldn't hurt Elizabeth's skin when she was a baby.  I started using baking soda to clean the bathtub and a steam mop for all my mopping.

For some reason, not too soon after Elizabeth was home, I started having problems with my hands cracking open.  I haven't been diagnosed with anything in particular, but I have discovered that a lot of the strong fragrances in cleaners and soaps greatly irritate my skin.  Oh, and antibacterial soaps are the worst!!!!  I try my best to steer clear of anti bacterial anything as well as fragrances, but, come on, I'm a girl! I LOVE good smelling products!!!

One product I started making was homemade all purpose cleaner.  I discovered the wonderful scents and great benefits of essential oils this way!!  This is my favorite all purpose cleaner recipe...

Homemade All Purpose Cleaner

16 oz glass spray bottle
2 cups distilled water
2 tsp washing soda (Arm and Hammer)
1 tsp borax
1 tsp liquid castille (I use Dr Bronner's*)
30 drops dōTERRA essential oil**

Mix it all together in the spray bottle and shake thoroughly.  Easy peasy!!!


*I use unscented so that I can smell the essential oils well, but feel free to use any scent of liquid castille you love!!

**I use any combination of oils that I'm in the mood for!!  My current favorite is 15 drops of wild orange essential oil and 15 drops of rosemary essential oil. 


What You Need:
16 oz. glass spray bottle (you can purchase one here)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 3/4 cups water
30 drops d
ōTERRA essential oil (see suggestions below)
1 teaspoon borax

Recommended Essential Oils: 
15 drops each of Lavender and Lemon
10 drops each of Eucalyptus, Peppermint, and Wild Orange
30 drops On Guard blend
15 drops each of Grapefruit and On Guard
Directions:
1. Add all ingredients to spray bottle. Shake thoroughly.
- See more at: http://doterrablog.com/spring-cleaning-all-purpose-spray/#sthash.88EF67Qp.dpuf
What You Need:
16 oz. glass spray bottle (you can purchase one here)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 3/4 cups water
30 drops d
ōTERRA essential oil (see suggestions below)
1 teaspoon borax

Recommended Essential Oils: 
15 drops each of Lavender and Lemon
10 drops each of Eucalyptus, Peppermint, and Wild Orange
30 drops On Guard blend
15 drops each of Grapefruit and On Guard
Directions:
1. Add all ingredients to spray bottle. Shake thoroughly.
- See more at: http://doterrablog.com/spring-cleaning-all-purpose-spray/#sthash.88EF67Qp.dpuf
What You Need:
16 oz. glass spray bottle (you can purchase one here)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 3/4 cups water
30 drops d
ōTERRA essential oil (see suggestions below)
1 teaspoon borax

Recommended Essential Oils: 
15 drops each of Lavender and Lemon
10 drops each of Eucalyptus, Peppermint, and Wild Orange
30 drops On Guard blend
15 drops each of Grapefruit and On Guard
Directions:
1. Add all ingredients to spray bottle. Shake thoroughly.
- See more at: http://doterrablog.com/spring-cleaning-all-purpose-spray/#sthash.88EF67Qp.dpuf

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Welcome to 2017!!!!!!









Happy New Year!!!!

Hard to believe that 2017 is already here!!!  2016 FLEW by!!!  My mother always told me that time flies when you get older- she's not kidding!!!!

So, what plans do y'all have for this new year???  Any goals that you've set?  I always renew my plan to read through the Bible in a year.  This year I'm following this plan.

I'm also committing to reading more books for myself this year.  Yes, we read tons of great books in our homeschool and I do enjoy them all, but I want to read to challenge myself, as well.  Jami Balmet from Young Wife's Guide is hosting a Christian Reading  Challenge for Christian Women and I plan to read along.  :)

And, of course, at the beginning of each year I ALWAYS renew my commitment to eating healthier and exercise.  HA.  Doesn't everyone??  I TRY to stick to low carb (keto, THM S) meals, but I still cook and bake regular for everyone else.  Mr. U keeps his type 2 pretty much under control watching his portions and exercising.  I want to lose weight, yes, but OH HOW I LOOOOOOOOVE TO BAKE!!!!  A lot of times the girls and I will bake and give it away.  :)

So tell me about yourself! I'd love to hear plans and dreams for 2017!!!!



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