Monday, January 31, 2011

Menu Monday- 1/31





Picking up my meat order from the coop on Wednesday, so I'll be cooking out of my freezer again this week to make room :)  It's a good thing :)

Monday:  Tacos

Tuesday:  Breakfast for Dinner:  Jimmy Dean Skillets and Pancakes

Wednesday:  Cheesy Chili Mac (Never made it last time, still have the stuff)

Thursday:  Pork Chops and Rice, Fruit Salad

Friday:  Burgers and Fries

Saturday:  Snack Dinner

Sunday:  Chicken Dinner in the Crock Pot  (I'll let you know how it turns out)




Sunday, January 30, 2011

Supper Sunday-Mandarin Orange Cake


This is definitely a special occasion dessert, but it is really good.  I say special occasion because of the high points value, but aren't most things high points value when it comes to cakes?  It's worth the points.  I promise :)


Mandarin Orange Cake
WW Points+=10 points at 16 servings
Ingredients:

Cake:
1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
4 Eggs
1/2 Cup Oil
11 oz can mandarin oranges and juice

Frosting:
5 oz instant vanilla pudding mix
16 oz cool whip
20 oz crushed pineapple (drain juice)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325.  Blend with mixer all ingredients for cake.  Pour into 3 cake pans (greased and floured).  It's a moist cake- so when browned on top it's done even if middle is still a little wet.  Bake for 25-35 minutes.  Take out of pan while still warm, otherwise it will stick.

Mix all frosting ingredients by hand (so as not to break down the cool whip).  Frost cooled cake, putting a small amount of frosting in between the three layers and keep in refrigerator.

Note- the points are based on full fat versions of everything.  I don't do "light" products as a rule because of the additives and such that are in them, but you could probably lighten it up quite a bit if you wanted to.  :)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Singing Saturday- Amazed



This is one of my favorite songs to sing.  While looking for a youtube video for this post I came accross this one.  I do hope you'll take the time to watch it all.  It is a pretty powerful video :)



Amazed- Desperation Band

You dance over me
While I am unaware
You sing all around
But I never hear the sound

Lord I’m amazed by You
Lord I’m amazed by You
Lord I’m amazed by You
How You love me

How wide
How deep
How great
Is Your love for me

Lord I’m amazed by You
Lord I’m amazed by You
Lord I’m amazed by You
How You love me 


Friday, January 28, 2011

Family Time Friday- Little Leaps of Love


We're approaching February and that means Valentine's Day.  Do you do something special for your sweetheart for Valentines Day?  Do you have traditions you enjoy?  Do you do things for your kids?

I try to get the kids each something small and we have a fun Valentine's or Red- themed dinner and dessert that night.  My husband and I have only actually gone out twice for Valentine's Day on the actual day and it's such a zoo that we've decided we'd much rather spend the evening at home with the kids.

I always look forward to Valentine's Day because it's another opportunity to show my love to my family.  Which is why I'm excited about a series a fellow blogger is doing called Little Leaps of Love!


Little Leaps of Love


Each day in February (excluding Sundays) she'll be posting a challenge- a little task to do to show love to someone in your family.  She's also holding a contest with prizes!  How fun is that?  I'll be joining in, and would love to hear if you are too!

Whether you're joining in or not, I'd like to know, what are some of the things you do to make Valentine's Day special?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Making Our Homes Like Heaven in 2011- Week 4!


WOW! Can you believe we're already 4 weeks in???!! I can't! It is just flying by! I hope you are beginning to feel like you're making some progress in your home.  If you are new to our adventure you can revisit previous weeks and see where we've already come from here:  Week 1 , Week 2, and Week 3.

Want to join in??!!! Just grab the button and add it to your blog post, and link up on our linky below :)  Also, please add to your blog the following sentence:



Create your own banner at mybannermaker.com!
Copy this code to your website to display this banner!

Don't forget to link up and like us on FaceBook!

Over the past few weeks we've cleaned out our refrigerators, inventoried our freezers, cleaned out our master closet, cabinets in our bathrooms, and cleaned up our bedrooms.  We've also checked our credit and begun keeping a record of our donations for tax time next year.  We've looked at our calendars and tried to scale back a little, and we'll be doing a little more of that this week as well :)  Some of us have gotten all of the tasks completed and some of us have done a couple each week.  We've also started the habit of making a list each night of 6 things we need to do the next day so we can stay on top of our priorities.  I think you'll agree with me that everything works together for the good, the bad, or the ugly.  If one area  of our life is out of sync the others will get that way as well.  So, we're trying to really focus on the entire package as we Make our Homes like Heaven in 2011.

One thing that happens at my house is that I get so busy taking care of everything and everyone else that I don't take care of myself.  I wonder if that happens at your house too?  It takes me getting to the point where I'm completely overwhelmed and exhausted and yelling at my kids and being short with my husband to realize I've not been taking care of myself and it's affecting how I care for those I love.  It is also a known fact in my house that my mood often directly correlates with the state of the house or the "busy"-ness of my calendar.  I'm really trying to become more aware of this and more proactive about it before it gets to the point that I lash out at my loved ones.  Tell me I'm not alone in this!!!! :0

With that, let's get on to this week's list!
  1. Go into your pantry and clean it out.  Make an inventory list of the items that are in there and put everything back in an organized fashion.
  2. Based on your inventory lists for your Freezer and Pantry, plan at least one meal in the next week solely made from food you already have on hand.
  3. Check your calendar for February.  Find a date to do something for yourself- maybe get a pedicure, maybe a massage, or just spend an afternoon alone at the library.  Whatever you decide to do, make time for yourself away from the kids a priority this month.
  4. While your checking your calendar for February, find a date to go on a date with your spouse.  I know it's Valentine's month, and if you usually go out for Valentine's Day that's fine (we stay home and spend it with the kids), but make sure you have at least one night that you will have time to refuel your marriage.
  5. Finally, find 1 full day and 1 half day on your calendar that you can block out and commit not to plan anything, just have some down time on those days.
Fairly easy list this week, depending on how big of a project the pantry is!  :)  If you breeze through this list consider doing an item from a previous list that you didn't get to.  :)  Also, let's talk about our progress on FaceBook.  It helps to encourage each other and holds each other accountable!

Don't forget to link up!!!!



Tuesday, January 25, 2011

GratiTuesday- Don't Know What to Write About....


As I sit here trying to come up with something to write I'm having a hard time coming up with something.  You see, it's not that I'm not grateful for things, but I'm grateful for the usual things, and I'm wondering if you're tired of hearing about it? 

Like, I'm grateful for my kids.  They have the most amazing hearts.  They're always willing to give up things to help other people, and that never ceases to amaze me..... but I'm sure I've mentioned already how proud I am of the boys and their willingness to take the babies into our family and all that that entails....

I'm grateful that I have a daughter to have girl time with while we're surrounded by all these boys.....

I'm grateful that my husband has the most amazing heart.  He's willing to take in extra children, he puts up with me, etc....  And this past week when I was overwhelmed and PMSing and VERY cranky, he never retaliated against me...  He was very patient, and that was not lost on me at all....

I'm grateful for our fireplace and sitting by it on a cold day....

I'm grateful for my lazy dog....  I think she's the laziest ever, but she loves us....

I'm grateful that I know where I'm sleeping at night, and I know I'll have food.....

I'm grateful that I can go to God in prayer when I have to make difficult decisions and I don't have to make them by myself.

I'm grateful that my husband and I can make these types of decisions TOGETHER with mutual respect for each other.......

So, you see, I have a LOT to be grateful for.....  I just don't know what to write about ;)

This post is linked to Heavenly Homemaker for GratiTuesday :)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Menu Monday- 1/24


It's that time! This past week I learned on WW that I don't want to think about points on my daughter's birthday and I'm ok with just letting loose for special occasions. I'm back on plan today and everything will be ok ;) I also learned that I really do feel pretty much like crap after eating a bunch of junk. I also learned that I have no desire to go walking or do much of anything to be honest when it's cold.... Come on Spring!!!!!!!!

Anyway, let's get to it for this week :)

Monday:  Pinto Beans, Corn Bread, left over Layered Salad

Tuesday:  Chicken with Stir Fry Veggies

Wednesday:  BBQ Sandwiches, Potato Salad, Peas

Thursday:  Mexican Beans and Rice Casserole, Fruit Smoothies

Friday:  Pizza Night

Saturday:  Snack Dinner

Sunday:  Split Pea Soup and Rolls

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Supper Sunday- Penne with Meat Sauce



This is a dish I came up with while trying to cook out of my freezer and pantry.  It was super good and literally took me 20 minutes start to finish!  Enjoy :)
 
Penne with Meat Sauce
Serves 8, 5 Pts+ per serving

Ingredients:
1 pound lean ground beef
Dried Basil
Garlic Salt
2 cups Red Sauce
1/2 pound uncooked Penne Pasta


Directions:
Put Pasta in water to cook according to directions on package.  While pasta is boiling, brown ground beef with a sprinkling of basil and a sprinkling of garlic salt.  Once the meat is browned add sauce and cook on low for about 5 minutes.  When pasta is al dente, remove from heat and drain.  Add pasta into meat mixture, stir until combined and continue cooking about 5 minutes longer or until pasta is done.  Serve it with a nice salad with some homemade ranch dressing and you've got a good meal :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Singing Saturday-Praise Anthem

This is a different style of music than I regularly feature, but this song I really really like. I like to turn it up and dance! Give it a listen :)  Make sure you listen to the end.....  That's my favorite part :)







Praise Anthem- James Fortune and FIYA

Phone Rings:

Tarrence: Hello

James: A Yo Tarrence, Y'all finish working on that song that we was working on yesterday.

Tarrence: Yeah we just getting finish now

James: Iight call the group in, i wanna hear it.

Tarrence: Iight hold on.

James: Everybody in now

Tarrence: Yeah they walking in right now

James: Let me see what y'all got so far

James: Come on

Choir: We have come to praise, everybody let me see you raise your hands up high, your hands up high.4x

James: Go back to the beginning

Choir: We have come to praise, everybody let me see you raise your hands up high, your hands up high.4x

James: Just let me hear the second part, right here.

Choir: Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my shout
Let me see you do your dance, if the Lord has brought you out.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my praise
Let me see you do your dance, If the Lord has made a way.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my shout
Let me see you do your dance, if the Lord has brought you out.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my praise
Let me see you do your dance, If the Lord has made a way.

We have come to praise, everybody let me see you raise your hands up high, your hands up high. 4x

James: Next part, come on!

Choir: Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my shout
Let me see you do your dance, if the Lord has brought you out.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my praise
Let me see you do your dance, If the Lord has made a way.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my shout
Let me see you do your dance, if the Lord has brought you out.

Can't nobody take my dance
Can't nobody steal my praise
Let me see you do your dance.

James: Come on, let's go:

Choir: We have come to Praise!

James: Come on put your hands up. Say it!

Choir: We have come to Praise!

James: That's right, Come on we come to get our praise on:

James: Hello, Hello, Tarrence, What's wrong with the phone, Take it off of speakerphone, Hahahaha woooo
James: Listen because who the son sets free, is truly free indeed
James: Can't nobody tell me how to dance
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to dance.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to shout
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to shout.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to praise.
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to praise.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to lift my hands
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to lift my hands.
James: Say it again (Repeat)

James: Listen because you don't know like I know
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: Come on you don't know how good God has been to me.
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: You don't know where I was this time last year
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: You don't know some of the sins God has forgiven me for

James: Listen that's why can't nobody tell me how to dance.
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to dance.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to shout
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to shout.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to praise.
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to praise.
James: Can't nobody tell me how to lift my hands
Choir: Can't nobody tell me how to lift my hands.

James: You don't know
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: Come on, you don't know like I know
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: Come on, tell somebody, you don't know what I've been through
Choir: You don't know like I know
James: How you gonna judge my praise
Choir: You don't know like I know, I know, I know (Faded out)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Family Time Friday- Movie Reviews


I've talked about our movie nights before. It's a great way to spend time together with the family, inexpensive, and relaxing. Here's a funny story- For Christmas my husband's brother's family and my family decided for Christmas this year we were going to give a family gift. Couldn't be too expensive, just a little something. Well, when we got together to exchange gifts it was quite a surprise.

You see, I put together this movie night basket of sorts for them- movie candy, popcorn boxes, popcorn and the like...........

As they opened their gift they started to chuckle.....

They had put together for us a movie night packet- movie candy, movies and the like! LOL!! We laughed so hard! ;)

Here's another funny.... My husband and I have a joke between us.... We only watch sucky movies! LOL... It's not on purpose, we just only pick movies that suck! Our first date we saw a movie that sucked... I can't even remember the name of it, Nicole Kidmann was in it, but I can't remember the name of the movie... Anyway, a good majority of the movies we've rented have also sucked. LOL 

Do you think I could say suck one more time?  suckity suck suck suck......


Anyway, here's a tool for you so that YOU don't watch a "sucky" movie!  Focus on the Family has a Plugged in Movie Review and it gives reviews for you on the movies that are out there :)

If you want to bring movies into your homeschool, Teach With Movies appears to be a good source :)  It is $11.99 a year, but it looks like it is really good.  I haven't paid the money- so I can't say for sure, but if anyone out there has or does, please let me know ;)

Movie Sheets is a free resource that has several different worksheets for different movies you can show in your classroom :)

Or, you can just sit back, relax, and enjoy the show....  Please, don't forget to silence your cell phones :)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Making Our Homes Like Heaven in 2011- Week 3!



Three weeks in and we're really getting going now! I hope you are enjoying this challenge as much as I am. If you're new to Making our Homes Like Heaven in 2011 you can catch up by reading Week 1 and Week 2.

I can't believe I'm actually showing you this- but I promised on facebook that I'd show you my closet- so here are some before and after pictures....  ;)








What's one thing that you need to get done around your house? I'm beginning to really be able to take stock at my house and see past my own mess and assess where I need to go from here. I'd love to hear where you're at, just leave some comment love :)

Ok, now on to this week!

1. Go to www.AnnualCreditReport.com and get your credit report. It's free once a year. Make it a habit to go run your own credit every January so you know what's on there :)

2. Go through the cabinets in your bathroom. Throw out anything you haven't used lately and put everything back in an organized fashion.

3. Go into your bedroom. Change out your bed sheets and clean all of the blankets. Throw out any pillows that are past their prime and buy pillows to replace them.

4. Clean off the end tables by your bed, and your dressers. Dust. While you're at it, dust the ceiling fan and walls/ceiling.

5. Look under your bed. If it's not too bad clean it out. If it's really bad spend 15 minutes on it and stop.

Why are we starting in the Master Bedroom and closet?  Because it's the room that never gets done.  If your house is anything like mine you make sure the common areas are good, and close the door on your room.  Why?  We deserve to start our day in peace!!!  So let's get to it :)

Want to join in??!!! Just grab the button and add it to your blog post, and link up on our linky below :)  Also, please add to your blog the following sentence:



Create your own banner at mybannermaker.com!
Copy this code to your website to display this banner!

Don't forget to link up and like us on FaceBook!  I'm trying a new linky tool ....  Hope you like it...  Let me know!




Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

GratitTuesday- Hyper Children


Over the weekend my chickie got really sick.  Evidently there is a nasty cold going around that likes to settle in your chest.  It settled in chickie's chest and quick!  An emergency room visit later we were home equipped to do breathing treatments.  :(  My chickie is a VERY hyper little wild child and keeps us running all the time just trying to catch up.  But this weekend she did nothing but lay on me whining and moaning :(  It was terrible.  She was so miserable and I felt so helpless I found myself in tears many times just thinking about how miserable she was.  By yesterday the goat was sick too :(  So, that is why this post is so late, and why I haven't kept up on our facebook page.  Sorry about that.  Armed with meds for the goat after our doctor visit yesterday now as I write this the chick and the goat are running around the living room chasing each other :)

I've often thought I would just enjoy a day where she isn't just bouncing off the walls non-stop.  I learned this weekend that I would not.  I'm thrilled to be chasing my chick around again.  :)

That's what I'm thankful for today, this GratiTuesday :)





This post is linked to Heavenly Homemakers GratiTuesday

Monday, January 17, 2011

Menu Monday- 1/17


Well this week I learned some things again.  We're only dead if we stop learning or growing, right?  I learned that Half and Half is only 1 point + for 2 TBS, where heavy cream is 3 pts+.  I really like real cream in my coffee, and I'm starving if I just put milk in (probably because there's less fat to keep me satisfied), so we'll see if Half and Half will do the trick for me :)  I also decided it's best to save my weekly points for a special splurge- makes it feel more like a treat.  Tuesday I made Chocolate Covered strawberries and at 1 pt+ a piece, they're a great treat!  Oh, and for those of you following WW- I've added the points values to the Beef Enchiladas, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Taco Soup, Breakfast Casserole, and Tater Tot Casserole :)  I try to continue to add the point values as I make them and figure the values :)


So, here's what's on the menu this week!  :)

Monday:  Meat and Pasta Bake, Salad

Tuesday:  Sauteed Chicken and Stir Fry Veggies

Wednesday:  Home Group- I don't have to cook this time!  ;)

Thursday:  Pinto Beans and Corn Bread, Fruit Smoothies

Friday:  Chili Mac, Layered Salad

Saturday:  Burgers and Dogs, and BIRTHDAY CAKE! (My chickie is turning 2!)

Sunday:  Snack Dinner

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Supper Sunday- Chocolate Covered Strawberries


I made these the other night for my husband and I and it is such an easy dessert to make. You know when you buy them in the store you'll often spend like $5 for a box of 4???? You'll never do that again after this!!!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
WW Points+ 1 Pt per strawberry
Ingredients:
1 pint Strawberries
6 oz Baker's Chocolate squares- Semi Sweet
1 oz Baker's  Chocolate squares- White

Directions:
Wash and thoroughly dry strawberries on paper towels.  The key to the chocolate sticking is that they're dry, so don't skip this!  
Melt semi sweet chocolate in microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments stirring in between each cooking cycle until the chocolate is completely melted.  
Hold the strawberries by the stem and dip in chocolate spinning around to coat all sides.  Place on waxed paper to set.   
Melt White chocolate in microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments as well until melted, stirring between each cooking cycle. 
Take two spoons to drizzle the white chocolate on the strawberries that are setting on the waxed paper to give a more decorative effect.
 Chill in refrigerator until ready to eat!  :)

You can mix this up by adding finely chopped nuts, or layers of chocolate, cover pretzels, etc.  Your imagination is your only limit!

 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Singing Saturday-The Narrow Road

I have a friend whom I have never met in person, but we've know each other online for several years and I can say I feel like we are actually friends in real life too ;) Anyway, she featured song on her blog, Mothering in a Shoe, this week, and I just had to share it too! It spoke to me in a lot of the same ways it spoke to her, maybe it will speak to you too ;)


The Narrow Road- Rick Pino
 
Let me walk with You on the narrow road
I know it may get lonely but I know that I'm not alone
I'll seek You in the wilderness, I know that's where You are
You whisper like the breeze, You're speaking to my heart, You say...

The wide gate looks so beautiful
but destruction is its end
Go against the stream, my friend
and stand where angels fear to tread

At Your feet I lay my crowns and with my tears I sow
into those who will one day
know the glory of the narrow road