Saturday, March 31, 2007

Another Chicken Broccoli Casserole

4 chicken breasts
10 oz. broccli cuts, thawed
8 slices of cheese
1 can cream of celery soup
1/3 cup milk
1 box Chicken Stove Top Stuffing

Cook chicken, cut up, and place in bottom of 13x9 pan. Chop broccoli and put over chicken. Lay cheese slices over broccoli. Mix soup and milk together, and pour over cheese. Prepare stuffing according to directions on box. You may want to add a couple of extra tablespoons of water to keep moist, since it will be baked. Spread stuffing over top and bake 45 minutes at 325 degrees.


Chicken & Wild Rice Casserole

1 pkg. Uncle Ben's Long Grain and Wild Rice, cooked as directed
1 whole chicken, cooked and cubed
1 can french green beans
1 can sliced water chestnuts
1 can sliced mushrooms
2 oz. jar pimientos
1/2 cup mayo
1 can cream of celery soup
1 pkg. slivered almonds, toasted
salt and pepper

Drain the beans, water chestnuts, mushrooms and pimientos. Cook rice according to package. Cook chicken and cut into cubes. Mix together mayo, soup and almonds. Mix together all ingredients. Cook at 350 for 30 minutes.

Impossible Crustless Quiche

1 cup veggies (frozen broccoli is my fave)
1 cup diced turkey or ham (lunch meat works great)
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese
1/3 cup chopped onion, sauteed (I use the dehydrated stuff)
1 2/3 cups milk
1/2 cup mayo
4 eggs
1 cup bisquick
1 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/8 tsp. pepper

Layer veggies, meat and cheese and onion in 2 greased pie plates. Beat together remaining ingredients and pour over pies. Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until knife in center comes out clean.

Conference Notes

I also love being able to watch/listen to General Conference. This year watching conference was a new experience for me with a baby. Although she did wonderfully and she napped at the beginning of both sessions, I still feel like I was a bit distracted when she was awake. I was able to really listen carefully to some of the talks, but I missed parts of other talks. I thought it would be helpful to hear what some of your favorite talks were, and why they stuck out to you. Sometimes it really helps me to have a deeper understanding when I hear what other people learned. So if you feel like sharing your thoughts and feelings from conference today or tomorrow (or both), please do so!

Enjoying/Surviving Conference

I love General Conference! I always look forward to it and I feel like it comes just in time! Now that our little one is a year though, I'm discovering that I have to renegotiate my conference going and expectations, like most other things we've had to re-evaluate since we entered parenthood. I don't get to sit and enjoy and take notes anymore. In fact, we were at home this morning, struggling to listen to halted internet feed because the little one is sick and it doesn't come on tv to the poor in Minnesota! But I actually like going to watch at the chapel. Don't get me wrong, I liked watching in my pajamas at home when we lived in Orem, but I also feel like I get more out of it when I'm dressed and at the church! Anyway, any survival tips? How do you pay attention and enjoy it when you have to compromise staying at home or watching at the church? (let's face it eight hours is too much at church time for any kids!) I do enjoy reading the Ensign the next month, but I'm not good at going back and listening to sessions...but maybe I should be!

Turkey (chicken) Tetrazzini

8 oz. spaghetti
5 T. butter
6 T. flour
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup light cream
1 tsp. salt
3 cups cooked chicken, cubed
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Cook spaghetti in boiling salted water until just tender. Melt butter: blend in flour. Stir broth into flour mixture. Add cream. Cook until mixture thickens and bubbles. Add salt and pepper, drained spaghettie, and cold chicken. Turn into individual baking dishes or into a 2-3 quart flat casserole. Sprinkle with cheeses. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned.

Chicken and Broccoli Casserole

Broccoli (fresh or frozen), cooked, enough to cover bottom of 9 x 13 pan
4 cups chicken, cooked and separated into chunks
2 (10 3/4 oz.) cans cream of chicken soup
1 cup mayonnaise
1 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 cups grated cheese
Bread crumbs (optional)

Place cooked broccoli in bottom of greased pan. Place cooked chicken, separated into chunks, on top. Mix other ingredients well and pour over the broccoli and chicken. Part of the grated cheese can be mixed with the sauce. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top. Don't be stingy. Bread crumbs can be used as a topping. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Cheese topping can be added the last 15 minutes of cooking time.


Mom's Chicken and Rice

2 Cups Rice (white or brown or a mixture of both)
1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 Can Chicken Gumbo Soup
1 Soupcan of water
1 pkg dry Onion Soup
2 lbs. chicken, any cut

Combine all ingredients in casserole dish except chicken and dry soup. Sprinkle 1/2 soup package over the top of ingredients. Then place chicken pieces (I like to use breasts and cut them up into 2-3 inch pieces) in rice mixture, spacing evenly. Sprinkle remaining soup mix on chicken. Bake covered at 325 for 2 hours.

Mexican Lasagne

1 lb lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
8 oz. favortie cheese, shredded
1 1/2 Cup salsa
1 small tomato, chopped
1 can olives, chopped
8 flour tortillas
1 can refried beans
cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper, all to taste
(I think you're pretty safe going with at least 1/2 tsp of the first three. We tend to go heavy on the cumin because we love that flavor)

Brown beef and onion. Drain fat. Season w/ cumin, chili powder, garlic, salt and pepper. Add salsa and tomato. Set aside. Divide beans among tortillas and spread thinly. Sprinkle with olives and cheese. Roll tortillas tightly and arrange side by side in casserole dish. Pour meat mixture over tortillas and cover with more cheese. Bake at 350 for 20-30 min or until cheese is bubbly.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Funky Nurseries

Okay, I've had two girls and been severely disappointed by the lack of brightly colored bedding. Check out Bombay Kids here. It's so much fun!!!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Exersaucer/Jumper Debate

After reading a post on Katie's blog, I was curious about the debate over whether or not exersaucers,jumpers, and walkers are really a good thing for our children's motor development. I'm just finishing physical therapy school, so I e-mailed my pediatrics professor to ask her what she thought. She said that they're definitely not good for any child who has high muscle tone (such as those who have CP), but exersaucers and jumpes are okay for most normally developing children. She said the "experts" against them feel that way because it is thought they may delay walking because the child does not get to practice postural control beyond the boundaries they are in. This would only really be a concern if your child was in one for very large periods of time though. Walkers, on the other hand, are warned against in all cases because of safety concerns. So, it's fine to use exersaucers and jumpers as an exercise activity for short periods of time when you are around to supervise; just don't ever let them "baby-sit" your children. Hope this helps!

One of my fave children's books

This is one of my favorite children's books, Over in the Garden by Jennifer Ward. I used it so much when I was teaching elementary music because it was a great way to hear individuals and small groups sing. I read it all of the time to little v. I love it because you actually sing it (of course you don't have to). The book is sung to the tune of "Over in the Meadow" (the melody is written in notation on the inside cover if you don't know it). Jennifer Ward made "Over in the Garden", "Somewhere in the Ocean", "Way out in the desert", and possibly more. They are all the sung to the same melody, they include countng from 1 to 10, you can find the number hidden on each page, and kids can count the number of animals/bugs on each page. Once your kids are older, they can join in by singing part or all of each verse. For instance, here is an example of one of the pages and the part that your 4 year old can sing is in bold italics:

Over in the garden where the sunflowers grew
Lived a mother ladybug and her little beetles two.
"Crawl!" said the mother. "We crawl!" said the two.
So they crawled over petals where the sunflowers grew.

Just wanted to share!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


I'm not a huge Harry Potter follower, but I thought those who are might appreciate this. I saw it on CNN this afternoon. It's the cover to the final book.

Wednesday Weekly

What is your favorite time of the day?

Ten Things

A couple weeks ago I decided to create a list on my blog of 10 things I'd like to accomplish, do, be or go before I leave this world. What kind of things would you like to do? What types of goals have you set for yourself? Feel free to share...big or small. I believe it's important make goals and then share them with others. Then it's like you're kind of holding yourself accountable. You know what I mean? So, please share!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

My Modbe Website!

Hey, just wanted to let you all know that you can now order modbe stuff online. Sooo much easier! Just click here and it will take to to my page!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Non-Casserole Recipe

Chicken Roll-ups

1lb skinless boneless chicken
1 package cream cheese softened
1 cup bread crumbs
1 stick butter melted
2 1/2 crescent roll containers

Cut raw chicken into small chuncks. Mix softened cream cheese with chicken. Put spoonful of mixture into flat crescent roll and roll tightly and tuck in ends. Dip in melted butter and then roll in bread crumbs. Place on baking sheet and Bake at 350 degree for 20-30 minutes.

***I have also made it when I have boiled the chicken first and then cut it into small pieces. Also I have made it without the bread crumbs and melted butter.

Chicken and Stuffing Dish

4 boneless chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup
4 pieces of swiss cheese
1 package of chicken flavored stuffing mix

Prepare stuffing mix according to box. While stuffing is cooking place chicken breasts next to each other in a 9x9 pan. Place one piece of cheese on each chicken breast. Pour can of soup over chicken and cheese. Then pour prepared stuffing over the soup.
Bake at 375 degree for 1 hour covered with foil. Remove foil for last 15 or so minutes.

Tator Tote Cassarole

Tator totes- enough to cover the bottom of an 8x8 pan with a single layer
1 lb cooked hamburger meat
1 small can evaporated milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup
shredded cheese

Spread Tator totes in single layer on bottom of 8x8 pan. Set aside. Mix soup and milk into your cooked meat and stir. Pour meat mixture on top of tator totes. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Tuna Cassarole

1lb box macaroni noodles
2 cans tuna
1 large can evaporated milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup
8oz package of cheese

Cook noodles and drain. Combine soup, milk, cheese and tuna to your cooked noodles. Stir until well mixed and add salt and pepper as you like. Spread mixture into a 9x13 pan and cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. And Voila it is fabulous!!!
Macaroni & Cheese
4 Potatoes, cubed
2/3 cup Onions
2 tbsp Butter
2 tsp Salt, optional
1 box Macaroni & Cheese
1 egg
2 cups Shredded Cheese
1/2 cup Milk
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Italian Seasoning

Cook potatoes, 1/3 cup of onions, 1 tsp salt.

In a separate pot cook macaroni according to box with salt oregano and Italian seasoning.
Mash potatoes with butter. Combine the egg with milk. Combine the cheese from macaroni box, along with the egg and milk mixture and some of the shredded cheese. Combine the mashed potatoes.

Place into a baking dish and sprinkle left over cheese on top. Place in oven for 10 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Hashbrown Casserole
2 lb. bag hashbrowns
1 stick of butter, melted
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 c. grated cheddar cheese
1/4 c. onion chopped or instant
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and pour into greased casserole dish. Top with paprika and more cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Broccoli Chicken Rice Casserole
Saute medium onion in 1/2 stick butter. Cook 1 package broccoli and drain and add:

1 c. uncooked rice
1 c. cooked chicken
1 can cream mushroom soup
1/4 c. water
1/2 c. or more Cheese Whiz
1/2 c. milk

Pour in casserole and bake uncovered 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degrees.

Cheese Strata
1 1/2 lb. white bread, crust removed
2 lb. grated Cheddar cheese
10 eggs, beaten
4 c. milk
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. white pepper
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Cut bread into cubes and mix with cheese. Set aside. Mix together eggs, milk and seasonings. Add bread and cheese mixture and mix well. Let stand for 1/2 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour strata into 9 x 13 inch pan set in larger pan of hot water. Bake until brown and puffy, about 45-50 minutes.

Your Last Chance

Okay ladies, this week is the last official week of the Sugar & Spice Cookbook. I thought that casserole recipes would be the best item to end with. I'm not sure if my choices have been a little too revealing, but I LOVE simple and quick recipes.

Feel free to send in any other recipes from any other category. I'm going to work on getting the cookbook out next week, so....send anything you think should be included in there. The sky is the limit!!!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Ensign article

I really enjoyed an article I read in the Ensign this morning and just wanted to recommend it. It's in the April issue, pg. 9 by Shauna Bird Dunn. The article talks about following the Spirit, doing what works for your family, and motherhood. I especially liked how she talked about following the Holy Ghost through decisions in life.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Pregnancy Q & A

Ha, ha! I read this and thought it was SO funny!

Q: Should I have a baby after 35?
A: No, 35 children is enough.
Q: I'm two months pregnant now. When will my baby move?
A: With any luck, right after he finishes college.
Q: What is the most reliable method to determine a baby's sex?
A: Childbirth.
Q: My wife is five months pregnant and so moody that sometimes she's borderline irrational.
A: So what's your question?
Q: My childbirth instructor says it's not pain I'll feel during labor, but pressure. Is she right?
A: Yes, in the same way that a tornado might be called an air current.
Q: When is the best time to get an epidural?
A: Right after you find out you're pregnant.
Q: Is there any reason I have to be in the delivery room while my wife is in labor?
A: Not unless the word "alimony" means anything to you.
Q: Is there anything I should avoid while recovering from childbirth?
A: Yes, pregnancy.
Q: Do I have to have a baby shower?
A: Not if you change the baby's diaper very quickly.
Q: Our baby was born last week. When will my wife begin to feel and act normal again?
A: When the kids are in college.

To Color or Not

I need your opinions/experiences. I haven't colored my hair since I got pregnant with Baby "I". I LOVE lightening my hair, but I despise the upkeep and the "roots" look. I'm feeling the need for something new with the change of seasons, but I'm nervous I'll regret it if I color it.
Do you color your hair? How often? Are you good at keeping up with the regrowth?

Banana Bread

1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup mashed bananas (about 3 medium bananas)
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup oil

Mix the dry ingredients (first 5 ingredients). In a separate bowl mix the remaining ingredients, then combine with the dry mixture. Dough will be lumpy. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes.

Zucchini Bread

1 1/4 cups of oil
3 eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups grated zucchini
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp baking powder

In bowl, beat oil, eggs and sugar. When creamy add zucchini and beat. In a second bowl, mix the remaining ingredients. Then add to the other bowl and mix. Divide the dough into two loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Hey Mr. DeeJay

I saw the post about russian websites to download cheap music... and it got me thinking.

Regardless of purpose/mood, what songs are a permanent part of your collection? Could be for anything: relaxing, working out, pondering, psyching yourself up, quality time with the honey, etc.

Thai Noodle Salad

about 12 oz. pasta (more or less depending on the sauce to noodle ratio you like)

1/4 cup peanut butter
3 T. sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 t. red pepper flakes
pinch ground red pepper (cayenne)
2 T. toasted sesame seed oil
1 T. vegetable oil

Garnish (you can pick and choose):
Peanuts, chopped
Cucumbers, chopped
Red and yellow peppers, chopped
Green onion, chopped

Mis all sauce, except peanut butter, in bowl. Just before serving whisk in peanut butter. Mix with cooked pasta. Garnish with chopped peanuts, cucumbers, red and yellow peppers and green onions. Serve warm or cold. Also good with cooked chicken or shrimp.

Poppyseed Bread

3 c. flour
2 1/4 c. flour
1 1/2 t. salt
1 1/2 t. baking powder
3 eggs
1 1/8 c. oil
1 1/2 c. milk
1 T. poppy seeds
1 1/2 t. each vanilla, almond, and butter flavor extract

Mix dry ingredients together and make a well, then add the remaining ingredients. Mix all until smooth. Pour into 2 greased and floured loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 60 minutes. While hot, punch holes with fork and then glaze with the following: 1/4 c. orange juice, 3/4 c. sugar, 1/2 tsp. each vanilla, almond, and butter flavor extract. (Use loaf pan 8 x 3 x 2 1/2 inches deep and check for doneness around 50 minutes.)

Cabbage Soup

If you like cabbage, you'll like this. If you don't like cabbage, don't make this.

1/2-3/4 medium head of cabbage, chopped
5 large carrots
1 sweet onion, minced
4 stalks celery, cubed
3/4 cup ketchup
1 1/2 cups tomato-vegetable juice cocktail
3 cups vegetable broth
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 (14.5 oz) can peeled and diced tomatoes

1. Place chopped cabbage into an 8-quart soup pot
2. Microwave diced carrots in 2 tablespoons water for 6 minutes on high
3. Microwave diced celery in 2 tablespoons water for 4 minutes on high.
4. Add the microwaved vegetables to the pot. Add minced sweet onion, celery, and ketchup. Add juice cocktail, vegetable broth, chicken broth, and tomatoes. Fill each can with water, and add the water to the mixture. Cover, and bring to a boil. Continue boiling for 30 minutes.
5. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 2 to 3 hours.
6. Serve with slices of a French baguette. Have salt, black pepper, and Tabasco available to season to taste at the table.

Salad for spaghetti night

This is a simple salad I sometimes make to make spaghetti or pizza night a little more special.

Iceberg and/or Romaine lettuce
Roma tomatoes, sliced
Cucumbers, peeled and sliced
Block of mozzarella cheese, cubed
about a 1/4 lb. deli salami, sliced in bite-size pieces
(Black olives...I never actually use them because my hubby doesn't like them)
Italian salad dressing

I usually marinate the "toppings" in some dressing for a half hour before I put it all together with the lettuce but I don't think it's necessary.


Taco Soup

1/2 lb to 1 lb ground beef
1/2 onion
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 can kidney beans
1 can corn
1 packet (3 Tblsp) taco seasoning
1 cup water

Saute beef and onion, then put all ingredients in large saucepan or stockpot. Bring to boil and let simmer. So easy. You can adjust the amount of water to fit your desired consistency. Serve with grated cheese and taco chips.

One Cup Salad

1 Cup Sour Cream (Fat Free works great!)
1 Cup Mandarin Oranges
1 Cup Pineapple
1 Cup mini marshmellows
1 Cup coconut

Mix and serve, baby!

Go Music!

If any of you like downloading music from the internet, or you would like to but can't find a good site to download from, my husband and I found a site called The site is Russian but pretty much any American artist you can think of is on there. And the songs are only 15 cents each. It's the best deal we've found!

Wednesday Weekly

What is the grossest thing you have ever done in public?

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Soup and Salad Ideas!

I've been out of commission for a few days so I'm sorry if any of these are repeats!

Broccoli Cheese Bacon Salad

6 stalks broccoli, bite sized
1 lb. bacon, crisp and crumbled
1/4 cup bermuda onion
2-3 cups grated cheddar cheese
sunflower seeds

1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

Toss just before serving.

Curried Chicken Soup

2 quarts water
1 whole chicken (giblets, etc. removed)
1 cup celery with leaves, chopped
1 cup carrots, sliced
1 cup onion, chopped
1 tomato peeled and chopped (or one can chopped toms)
1 apple, chopped
1 1/2 tsp. salt or to taste
1/3 cup uncooked rice
1 tsp. curry
1 apple, chopped

Add first 7 incredients to stock pot. Cover and simmer 1 hour.
Remove chicken and debone chicken into bite size pieces. Set aside. Add to soup remaining ingredients. Simmer 30 minutes. Add chicken and heat through.

Pumpkin Soup

4 green onions, chopped
1 onion, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
4 Tbsp. butter
29 oz. can pumpkin
5 cups chicken stock
salt and pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. butter
1 cup whipping cream

Saute green onions, onion and carrots in butter until tender. Add pumpkin, chicken stock, salt and apper and garlic powder. Simmer for 25 minutes. Put all in blender and puree until smooth. Return to pot. Blend flour and butter together separately and add to soup. Cook until thickened. Add whipping cream and heat through. Garnish with nutmeg and croutons.

Children's Books

I thought we had a lot of books to read to our babe but now that we have read each of them 100 times (I'm exaggerating...a little), we're looking to add a few to the collection. Any favorites?

Hospital Bag Must-Haves

We have a few expecting Sugar & Spice moms. So ladies, what are your hospital bag must-haves? There were a few things I was so glad I brought and a few things I wished I had brought. How about you?

Spring Cleaning

Springtime is here, thank heavens! If you're like me, you love to take an entire day/weekend and dedicate it to cleaning and organizing your home. The feeling of all of the winter clothes stored away and all of the dust and germs once living in those deep, dark hidden away places destroyed and gone is exhilarating! I just came across this site and had to share. It's a great resource for when you're getting ready to deep clean your place. I'm gonna try some of the ideas. Let me know if any of them work for you too.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Bottle Baby Blues

My baby boy was born with a tongue tie and it was really hard to get him to breastfeed, so my lactation consultant had warned me not to give him bottles or pacifiers until he could breastfeed without a problem. Now four months later he is a champion breastfeeder (which I am grateful for), but to this day he cannot figure out how to suck on a pacifier or bottle. We have been trying really hard to get him to take an occasional bottle, but to no avail. He just chews on the nipple or rolls it around with his tongue. I was just wondering if this is something that's happened with anyone else's kids, or if this problem is due to his tongue tie. Does anybody have any bottle-weaning tricks up her sleeve?

Poppy Seed Salad

Romaine lettuce
baby leaf spinach
crumbled bacon
mozzarella cheese
red onion

1/2 tsp. poppy seeds
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. white vinegar
1/2 c. oil

*Blend dressing ingredients for 2 minutes in blender. Marinate red onions in dressing in the fridge for 4 hours - overnight.

Peekaboobaby Revisited

I'm not sure if you ladies saw these comments at the bottom of this post, but I wanted to make sure that we revisited it just in case! Pretty cool, huh?

A few of my favorite Soup, Salad and Bread Recipes

Ravioli Soup

1/2 lb. ground beef
1/2 lb. ground pork
1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
1 (28oz) Italian tomatoes
1 (12oz) tomato paste
2 (14.5 oz)cans beef broth
1 T. Sugar
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1(12 oz) frozen ravioli
Brown beef and pork with onion. Combine all remaining ingredients except ravioli. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Cook ravioli in water until almost done. Drain, add to soup. Serve with garlic bread and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Spinach Strawberry Salad

2 bags fresh spinach
1 sm. red onion (opt.)
1 qt. fresh strawberries, sliced

1/2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. poppy seeds
2 tbsp. sesame seeds
1 1/2 tbsp. onion
1/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/2 c. salad oil
1/4 c. cider vinegar
Mix dressing early. Or use 1 bottle poppy seed dressing. Tear washed spinach into bite sized pieces. Place in salad bowl. Toss with dressing. Add strawberries and onion, if desired. Toss lightly.

Quick Monkey Bread

1 package frozen (yeast) dinner rolls
1 package regular butterscotch pudding
1/4 cup chopped nuts (Optional)
3/4 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons melted butter
Grease bundt pan. Sprinkle nuts on bottom. Arrange rolls over nuts. Sprinkle dry pudding over rolls. Mix sugar and melted butter together and pour (drizzle) over rolls. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Cover with towel and let rise over night or at least 8 hours.

Bake 350°F for 45 min to 1 hour. COOL NO LONGER THAN 5 MINUTES. Turn pan over on serving dish and enjoy.

Cheesy potato soup

1/4 c. butter, melted
1 lb. potatoes peeled and cubed
1 tsp. paprika
2 c. milk
13 3/4 oz. can chicken broth
1 c. water
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
10 oz package of shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Combine butter and potatoes in a large saucepan, and cook for 10 min. Stir in paprika and cook for one additional min. Add milk, broth, water, salt, and pepper. (I sometimes add some onion salt as well.) Bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 min and remove from heat. Stir cheese into hot soup until melted.

Grape Salad

Confession: This is really more of a dessert, because it's kind of rich. But it's technically a fruit salad so I included it in this category! It's a great thing to take to potlucks.

8 oz cream cheese
8 oz sour cream
1/2 - 3/4 c. white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 lb red grapes (make sure they are firm)
1 can honey roasted peanuts-crushed

Mix cream cheese and sour cream. Add sugar and vanilla. Then add grapes and most of the peanuts. Save some peanuts to sprinkle on top as garnish.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

2 more weeks of our recipe series!

There are two weeks left of our special Sugar & Spice recipe series. Of course you can post recipes any time you want, but this has been a fun way to collect lots of goodies in a short amount of time. This weekend I made tagteam03's Texas Black Bean Soup and Joni's Slow-Cooker Chicken Cacciatore. We loved them both!

When I get the chance to go out to lunch, one of my favorite choices is the soup, salad, and breadstick lunch at The Olive Garden. This week's category is...


Kind of broad (and some in this category have already been posted in other categories), but should be fun!

Friday, March 16, 2007


I know a lot of you are already swimming in the Snapfish pool (yikes that was way cheesey), but in case you haven't heard of it I just want to make a plug for uploading your photos on (By the way, thanks to everyone who shares their fun Snapfish albums with me). I've been a Snapfish girl for about a year now thanks to my sis. Prints are 12 cents each when you order them. I pre-pay my prints so I pay only 10 cents a print for them. If you need pics right away, you can pick them up in like an hour at your nearest Walgreens for 12 cents a print (but they only do glossy finish, I like matte). It is a really fun way to share your photos with family and friends, you can arrange your photos, add captions, view them as a slideshow, choose a decorative heading, view how many people have visited your album, create photo gifts and books, etc. Guests can order prints too. And I love when on occasion they give you free stuff, like a free 8 x 10, or a free flipbook. I'm sure there are other options like this out there but this is the cheapest I've seen and you don't have to wait to get pictures if you don't want to. And it's fun!

Tangy French Dip

Put medium size roast in slow cooker with 1 Cup water, 1 packet of au jus dry seasoning and 1 packet of dry italian dressing. Cook for 8 hours on low. Shred meat and serve on favorite bun. Drippings make a delicious au jus, or if you would prefer to serve it as a roast with mashed potatoes and gravy, drippings can also easily be turned into a delicious gravy.

Edit: I had accidentally put ranch dressing in my initial posting. Please note the change. It is supposed to be dry italian dressing. P.S. I made this today and it was soo good.

Diaper Dilemma Part 2

Ok, so those Wal-mart diapers I raved about are no longer doing the trick. So weird! I don't get how diapers fit all babies differently, and even worked differently for us after about 2 months. The only thing I can attribute it to is that maybe it's because she's more active now??? Everytime she poops, it leaks out the top or sides and stains her clothes! So now I'm back to square one, and would love your help. I loved the Pampers Swaddlers, but they only go to size 2, and we're quickly outgrowing that size. What are your favorite brands? I am especially interested to know what kind works well for the six monthish age, where they are starting to get more active. Thanks!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Taco Chili

This recipe is one that I made-up
and I just kinda wing it everytime I make it, therefore there is room to adjust the amounts to fit your liking... For example, if you like lots of beans then add more.

1-2 lbs Ground Beef (I prefer Ground Sirloin because it is leaner)
1 Taco Seasoning Packet
2 14-16 oz cans of Tomato Sauce
1 6-8 oz small can of Tomato Paste
2 14-16 oz cans of Diced Tomatoes
1 14-16 oz can of Black Beans
1/2 jar of Salsa
1/2 cup water or milk (adjustable for desired thickness)
1 can or 1/2 bag frozen Corn

Brown the ground beef and mix in 1/2 of the taco seasoning packet (put the rest of the packet straight into the chili). Then you mix all of the ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for 2-3 hours minimum. It is still good even if you let it cook all day. One tip is to add the corn about a half an hour before you eat if you like it crisp.

Optional Toppings:
Sour Cream


Have you ladies ever seen this product? I think it's so nifty! I was never able to breastfeed my baby (he never quite caught on) but I think this would have come in so handy! What do you think? Would it be a valuable purchase for the next little one?

Chicken Cordon Bleu

4-6 chicken breasts (pounded out thin)
4-6 pieces of ham
4-6 slices of Swiss or mozzarella cheese
1 can cream of mushroom soup (can use any cream soup)
1/4 cup milk

Put ham and cheese on chicken. Roll up and secure with a toothpick. Place chicken in the slow cooker CrockPot so it looks like a triangle /_\ Layer the rest on top. Mix soup with the milk; pour over top of chicken.
Cover and cook on low for 4 hours or until chicken is no longer pink. Serve over noodles with the sauce it makes.

Healthy CrockPot Chicken

4 to 6 boneless chicken breast halves, without skin
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup converted rice, uncooked
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 to 2 cups frozen green beans, thawed

Put chicken breasts in the CrockPot. Add cream of mushroom soup and 1/2 cup water. Add 3/4 cup of rice and the chicken broth. Add green beans. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours, or until chicken is cooked and rice is tender.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Creamy Italian Chicken

Oops, this is what I get for being a procrastinator! I have been meaning to post this recipe for days, and I just noticed that Bethany posted a really similar one! I decided to post it anyway, because it's one of my absolute faves. Mmmm-delicious!

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 c. water
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 envelope dry Italian salad dressing mix
1 8 oz package of softened cream cheese (can substitute reduced fat, but I wouldn't go with fat-free)
1 4 oz can mushrooms, drained (optional)
Cooked rice or noodles

Cut up chicken breasts into large chunks. Place in crock pot, and cover with envelope of dressing, mixed with water. Cook in crockpot on high for 3 hours, or until juices run clear. Beat cream cheese and soup until blended. Pour over chicken and cook for one more hour. Serve over hot rice or noodles. (I usually don't have to cook for quite as long as the recommended times.)

Cream Cheese Chicken and Rice

  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 pkg dry Italian dressing mix
  • 2 chicken breasts

Combine all ingredients in the crockpot and cook on high for 3 hours (low for more than 3 hours). Before serving, you may need to add a little more milk to make the sauce the consistency of gravy (thickens as it cools). Serve over rice. Serves 2, but you can double the sauce and add more chicken.

Wednesday Weekly

What historical figure do you most admire?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Pulled Pork

We usually make this when we are having guests because my hubby and I put a lot of effort into it. Actually it's mainly my hubby (I just get up early to stick it in the crock pot). He gets the job of trimming the meat and since we are both so picky about not eating gross, fatty pieces, he takes a good amount of time to shred off all the good stuff. The size of the pork roast you want depends on how much you want. We usually get two medium size ones so we can serve a lot of guests AND have leftovers. In that case we add more sauce and vinegar as needed. Just add little by little until you get the flavor you like. We love it!!

1 pork shoulder roast/Boston Butt (we've had some fun times asking for "Boston butt" at the meat counter, I recommend it!)
1 large onion, quartered and sliced
salt and pepper to taste
Garlic powder
1 c. barbecue sauce
1/2 c. vinegar

Place roast in the crock pot; add chopped onion, salt and pepper, and a generous sprinkling of garlic powder. Cover and cook on LOW for about 9 to 11 hours or until very tender and shreddable. Drain all juices off and shred pork, removing fatty pieces; add vinegar and barbecue sauce. Continue cooking on HIGH for about 1 hour. Serve with buns. Makes about 8 to 10 generous servings.

Beef Stew

2 lbs. beef stew meat
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 to 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. paprika
1 1/2 c. beef broth
7 carrots, sliced
2 onions, chopped
3 potatoes, diced

Place meat in slow cooker. Combine flour, salt, pepper, and paprika. Stir into meat until coated thoroughly. Add remaining ingredients. Mix well. Cover. Cook on LOW 10 to 12 hours.

Chicken-lickin' Pork Chops

(Thanks Mom!)

1/2 c. flour
1 T. salt
1 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
6-8 pork chops
1 family size can chicken w/rice soup
2 T. oil

Mix first four ingredients in plastic bag. Shake pork chops and then brown in oil. Put in crock pot. Pour soup over. Cook on low 6-8 hours, the longer the better.

Water Birth

I've been following the blog of a friend of a sister-in-law of a friend ever since I saw that she had decided to go the water birth route. I was totally intrigued by the pool in the corner of her room that she was going to give birth to her baby in. At first it seemed so odd to me, but as I become more educated, I wonder what it would be like. After reading the description of how short the labor was and how minor her "battle wounds" are, I must admit that I am completely captivated. What do you think? Would you do it?


Can anyone share any Easter traditions/fun ideas as far as Easter dinner and other Easter activities? Thus far in my marriage I have been Easter challenged.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Cranberry Pot Roast


  • 1 beef roast
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1/3 cup Catalina or French salad dressing
  • 1 can jellied cranberry sauce
  • 2 Tbs butter, softened
  • 2 Tbs flour

Trim the fat from the roast and put in the crockpot. Put the onion slices on top of the roast. Mix together the cranberry sauce and dressing and pour over the roast. Cover and cook on low all day, until done. (Or cook half the day on high.) Remove the roast from the crockpot.

Mix together the butter and flour and whisk into the gravy. Turn the crockpot on high and cover for 10 minutes or so. Slice the roast in 1/4 slices and serve with the gravy.


  • Instead of an onion, you can use a packet of dried onion soup.
  • If you don't have the dressing, you can skip it.
  • This recipe also tastes great with chicken breasts instead of a pot roast!

Texas Black Bean Soup


  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, or diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
  • 1 (11 ounce) can Mexicorn, drained
  • 2 (4 ounce) cans chopped green chilies
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried minced garlic
Optional toppings:
  • tortilla chips, sour cream, and cheddar cheese
In a slow cooker, combine all ingredients except optional toppings. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or until heated through. Add optional toppings as desired.

Crockpot Garlic Brown Sugar Chicken

  • Chicken pieces-enough to feed your family-legs, thighs, etc. (or I just put in a 4-pack of chicken breasts)
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lemon-lime soda (diet is fine)
  • 2-3 Tbls. minced garlic
  • 2 Tbls. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. pepper (regular black or cayenne)
Place chicken in crockpot. Mix all remaining ingredients and pour over chicken. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve over rice or noodles. You can thicken the juices after cooking with a little cornstarch. If using cayenne pepper, it gives dish a szchewan flavor.

Sugar & Spice Cake

How fun is this!

1 box yellow cake mix
4 eggs
1 cup light sour cream
3/4 vegetable oil
1 cup water
1 package (3 oz) instant vanilla pudding
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Combine all ingredients except cinnamon and sugar by hand in a 2-quart mixing bowl. Set aside* Combine cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl. Sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture in greased 3 1/2 - 5 quart slow cooker, making sure to cover the bottom and sides. Spread batter in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low heat 5-6 hours, or until done in the center. Do not cook this recipe on high heat.

*It is important that you combine ingredients by hand and not with a mixer.

Vacation Scrapbook Supply

Keeping with the current scrapbooking theme, I've been working on my honeymoon trip scrapbook...from three years ago! :) We spent ten fabulous days in London and so I've been scouring stores for travel paper, London paper and stickers and this morning found this site. I probably won't get anything but thought it was fun and different so I thought I'd pass it on. Enjoy!

Chili Burros!

3 lbs. beef roast
1/2 lb. tomatoes (I just get a can of diced tomatoes and toss it in)
1 can chopped green chiles
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/8 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. flour

Cook beef roast, tomatoes and green chili in a crock pot until beef shreds easily (~8-10 hours on low) Shred beef, add spices and thicken sauce wih flour. Heat through. Serve meat in tortillas with fresh chopped tomatoes, sour cream and cheese!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Splendid Slow Cooking

Please share your favorite crockpot recipes. I'm with you...I would love to add some more variety to my slow cookin' supply. There's nothing like throwin' a bunch of ingredients into a dish, forgetting about it for 4-6 hours and then coming back to a delicious and easy meal!! Share, share, share!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

More about scrapbooks...

I was a few days late reading Linzerdoodle's post on scrapbooks, but I wanted to share what I have recently done. I was excited, because I just tackled this issue myself! I love to scrapbook, but I had gotten so behind with pictures that it was just overwhelming, and I didn't know where to start! It wasn't even fun for me anymore, because my huge box of pictures was too intidmidating, and I didn't know where to find all my pictures! By the time I got everything together I needed, I was out of free time! I started buying scrapbooks that are 3-ring binders, and then I use a combination of page protectors for scrapbook pages, and sheets that hold 12 4x6 photo inserts. That way I can at least get all of my pictures in the book. Then, instead of scrapbooking all of the pictures, I'll scrapbook one or two pages for a special event, and the rest of the pictures will be right after it. Sometimes I'll even do my journaling on a 4x6 piece of cardstock and put it in one of the picture slots. Hopefully that description makes sense! This has worked so well for me! Now my pictures are at least in an album, and there's enough scrapbooked pages to make it fun to look at! This picture is an example of a scrapbook page on the left, and the sheet that holds 12 photos (6 on the front, 6 on the back) on the right. I used one of the slots for journaling. Thanks for reading this boring post! For those of you that live near a Hobby Lobby, their scrapbooks, page protectors, and other supplies go on sale for 50% off all the time! This

Friday, March 9, 2007

Italian week is almost over...

We've collected LOTS of great Italian recipes this week. Thank you! Still a few days left if you have more! The recipe series is not over yet. If you have a category request, comment on this post!


Hey Everyone-

I thought I'd let you all know about the new modbe swim suits. They are great. If your like me, then you have had a really hard time finding cute swim suits that are modest and comfortable. These are seriously awesome! If any of you are interested let me know. Im going to be having a party on saturday the 17 in SLC and a party next week here in Logan. (not sure which day) So if you're in the area come and try them on and see what you think! You can also check out their website for other things at

No, no, no...

So, I've been noticing lately that I've become one of those mom's that I promised myself I would never be. A normal day's communication with Baby "I" is filled with, "No, don't touch"... "Please don't put that in your mouth"..."Get away from there"..."Let's not do that"..."Let go of mommy's hair!" I find that I'm using the words, "No...Don't... Stop..." WAY more than I want to. I was going to be a mom who teaches by example and shows constant praise so that his first words aren't, "No!"
How do you do it? I know it's necessary to use those words occasionally, I competely get that. I just want to be more positive than negative. How do you do it?

Thursday, March 8, 2007

baby scrapbook

Hi ladies!

My daughter is 6 months old now. I have huge amounts of photos but have not yet scrapbooked them. It's a bit overhwelming to think about right now! Anyway, as I've at least pondered the endeavor I've wondered how to go about it. I have my ongoing scrapbooking of just our family and the things that we do all year long. I kind of want her pictures to be right in there with it, and yet I'd like for her to have her own scrapbook of just her too. I have to admit, I'm not into the store-bought baby book where things are pre-set. I'd rather write my own stuff and create my own book. But how have you done it? I've considered just continuing the ongoing scrapbook of the family and then doing a separate book for her of just the very best pictures of her, like a two-page spread for each month or holiday of her life. Again, what have you all done?

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Traveling tips?

We are taking my almost 6-month old on a road trip to warmer weather. Any tips? I am a little worried about how well she will do in the car, does it normally mess up their sleep cycle if she sleeps extra in the car? She also has never slept in the pack 'n' play, is that a big change from sleeping in her crib? Any words of advice to make our trip go smoother would be great!

Wednesday Weekly

What was your worst subject in high school?

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

(Can also be made as a casserole if you don't plan ahead of time very well.)
Low Fat!

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, either whole or cut into pieces
1 garlic clove, minced (I often just use garlic powder)
2 tsp. lemon juice
1/4 large yellow onion, sliced
1 C of fresh mushrooms (canned can be substituted as well)
2 8 oz. cans tomato sauce
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 C Parmesan cheese, grated

Rub garlic on chicken. Put chicken in slow cooker and sprinkle with lemon juice. Layer onion and mushroom, then cover with tomato sauce. Sprinkle with seasoning and cheese. Cover and bake on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Serve over pasta or rice.

Parmesan chicken nuggets

We make this A LOT. A hit with kids.

Cut chicken breasts into strips or "nuggets." Coat in melted butter then in a crumb mixture consisting of approximately equal parts Italian bread crumbs and grated Parmesan cheese. Bake on cookie sheet for 15-20 minutes at 350.

Lemon Bundt Cake

From our very own Mindi Gordon, who never seems to post. :)

1 box lemon cake mix
1 small box lemon istant pudding (vanilla can be used in a pinch)
4 eggs
1/2 C oil
1 C hot water

Mix all ingredients for 5 minutes on med. speed. Pour into greased and floured bundt pan. Bake at 350 for 40-45 min. Cool in pan for 10-15 min before turning out. Drizzle glaze over cake while it is still warm.

2 T melted butter
1 T lemon juice
1/2 C powdered sugar
1/2 t. grated lemon peel (optional)

Devil's Food Oreos

These are our ABSOLUTE FAVORITE cookies to make.

Get a box of DEVIL'S FOOD CAKE MIX. Mix all of the ingredients it calls for except for the water! Mix them by hand with a fork. Do not use a mixer. This is very important. If you use a mixer the cookies will flatten out like pancakes. Spoon batter on cookies sheets in teaspoonfuls. Cook at the heat the box calls for 8-10 minutes. Using either cream cheese frosting or vanilla frosting (buttercream works if you're making homemade) sandwich two cookies together with the frosting in between.

Making up for lost time

Since I missed posting my favorite dessert recipes I will do that first, then I'll give you my Italian faves. You'll notice I'm all about easy, so all my recipes reflect it.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Young women activities

Sorry, I know this isn't really anything domestic, but I thought you guys would probably have some great ideas. I'm the beehive counselor in our ward, and I need ideas for activities that are fun but purposeful as well. I just want the girls to really enjoy coming to activity nights and feel like it's worth their time. Please share any fun ideas you have!

From Bottle to Sippy Cup

It's about that time. In the next few months we will be making the transition from bottle to sippy cup. What's the trick? Baby "I" is already taking small sips from the cup and he's lots better at actually drinking it now and not choking anymore. I have a feeling this may be a very difficult change for him though. He LOVES his bottle. The pediatrician suggested that we get him off the bottle at 12 months. Please share your successes and all that you've learned.

Monday, March 5, 2007

Chicken Pasta

A couple in our ward invited us to dinner a couple weeks ago and she made this pasta. Bronson and I loved it! So we got the recipe from her. This probably isn't something I would make by looking at the ingredients but it is soooo good! So you all should try it :) It's really easy too.
1 box bowtie pasta (12oz)
1cube butter
1/2 C. Parmesan cheese
4 tbs Milk
2 cloves garlic
salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste
4-6 chicken breast
In Sauce pan melt butter then add Parmesan cheese, milk, and garlic and stir.
Cut up the chicken, season, and cook in frying pan.Mix all ingredients together
You can season your chicken with whatever you want or have. I like to use season salt.

A Story You Moms Will Appreciate

Unless you are a mom who doesn't like hearing explosive diaper stories. Then you won't appreciate this story and should probably just skip down to the delicious Italian recipes below.

I was at Michael's with Collin today looking for a photo album. Collin was hot from being in his carseat for so long during our previous errands (it's in the 80s today, just like every other day in Florida), so I picked him up to let his back air out. Then it happened: he let out an explosive episode of #2. I mean, this was not just a normal, everyday bowel movement. This was like a stick of dynamite had gone off in his pants. Oh no! I thought as the unwelcome entity seeped through his onesie. I hope they have a bathroom with a changing table here! Luckily they did, but that didn't change the fact that I used every last diaper wipe in my bag and by the time we were done there was poo all over my shirt. Yes, my shirt. How did it get there?? Sigh. Unfortunately I didn't bring a change of clothes for myself. ;) So I did what any mom would do in situations like this: stood tall and continued my errands, poo stain and all. So be proud, moms. Be proud of the poo.

Stuffed Shells

1 box lg pasta shells
2 eggs
2 c. mozarella cheese
1 c. parmesan cheese
1/2 c. parsley
1 tsp salt
3 c. spaghetti sauce

Boil shells for 5-7 min and rinse. Mix all ingredients except for spaghetti sauce and place filling in each shell. Arrange in baking dish and pour spaghetti sauce over. Sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top. Bake for 45 min.

Chicken Spinach Pasta

I got this recipe from my sister in law and it is so easy - you just keep adding stuff and stirring.

garlic and onion (however much or little you want)
1/2c. apple juice
chicken, cubed ( not cooked)
1-2 bottles of Alredo sauce (depends on how much you sauce you want)
2 c. mozzarella cheese
1 bag baby spinach
angel hair pasta, cooked.

Brown garlic and onion (with a little olive oil) with chicken in fry pan. Add apple juice. Add alfredo sauce. Stir then add cheese. Stir then add the baby spinach and cook just until it starts to wilt. Serve over angel hair pasta.

You can use fresh garlic or the minced garlic in a jar. Enjoy!

Italian Chicken and Couscous

I know this is very close to Liz's Chicken Milano, but it is WONDERFUL, and the couscous is fun (because that is just how dull my life is, apparently). :) This recipe is courtesy of Betty Crocker.

1 T. olive or vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) stewed tomatoes, drained and 1/2 c. liquid reserved
1 pound bonelss, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch strips
1 medium onion, thinly sliced and separated into rings (it looks like a ton, but use it all)
1 1/2 t. chopped fresh or 1/2 t. dried oregano leaves
1/8 t. pepper
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
1 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 package (10-ounce size) couscous (3/4 cup)

1. Heat oil in 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Cook garlic in oil 1 minute, stirring frequently.
2. Stir in reserved tomato liquid, chicken, onion, oregano and pepper. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken is no longer pink in center.
3. Stir in broth; heat to boiling. Stir in zucchini, couscous and tomatoes, breaking up tomatoes with a fork or snipping with kitchen scissors (I just used canned diced tomatoes instead of stewed); remove from heat. Cover and let stand about 5 minutes or until couscous is tender and liquid is absorbed.


I got this recipe from my sister-in-law. It's one of my favorite soups to make.

1 lb. ground turkey or beef
1 med. onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 c. shredded cabbage
1/2 c. uncooked elbow macaroni
1 1/4 c. water (may need to add more at end)
2 tsp. beef bouillon granules
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes, undrained
1 can (8 oz.) kidney beans, undrained
1 can (8 oz.) corn, undrained

Cook turkey or beef, onion, and garlic in a large pot until meat is brown. Drain. Stir in remaining ingredients. Heat to boiling, reduce to low. Cover and simmer about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender.

LD's notes: You can adjust the ingredients to your family's likes. For instance, my husband doesn't like celery, but we double the amount of zucchini and cabbage. We leave out the Italian seasoning and add a bit of Tabasco sauce. My hubby also likes it served with Ritz crackers. We always use ground turkey.

Creamy Pesto Pasta

I got this recipe at an Enrichment and it's one of our favorite simple meals.

1 packet Knorr Creamy Pesto Sauce
1 cup milk
1/4 cup olive oil
1 (14.5 oz., I think) can stewed tomatoes, chopped
8 oz. penne pasta
(shredded chicken or small shrimp, optional)

In a medium saucepan, combine Knorr packet, milk, and olive oil. Whisk until thickens. Stir in chopped stewed tomatoes (add chicken or shrimp). Pour over cooked pasta.

LD's notes: I always make this with shredded really makes the meal complete.

Yum, yum!

Italian Beef Sandwiches

3 1/2 pounds rump roast
1 (16 ounce) jar pepperoncini
1 (.7 ounce) package dry Italian-style salad dressing mix (optional)
1 (10.5 ounce) can beef broth

Place the roast in a 3 1/2 quart slow-cooker, and add the pepperoncini, Italian dressing mix, and beef broth. Stir to blend, cover, and cook on low for 18 hours (yes, 18 hours - a light timer works well if you don't want to stay up until midnight to turn it on).
To serve, remove roast from the slow cooker. It usually just falls apart. Place the pepperoncini in a bowl to serve unless you just slice them up to go along with the meat.
Serve on sub rolls with mozzarella cheese.

BBQ Chicken Pizza
2 cups cooked chicken, cubed
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1 Boboli pizza crust
1/4 cup finely chopped purple onion
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1-1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Combine chicken and barbecue sauce and spread evenly on Boboli crust. Sautee onion and pepper to make tender, but still crisp. Sprinkle pizza with cheese, onion and bell pepper. Bake for 12 minutes or until bottom of pizza is crisp and cheese is melted and starts to bubble.

I love Italian! ...and so do you!

(Sorry, it's from Star Trek 4) :)

This is from my Aunt and Uncle who served their mission in Venice so I want to say it's "authentic" but who knows! I do know they're good cooks!

1. Saute in olive oil (just enough oil to cover pan):
1 large onion, chopped
5-6 cloves of garlic, chopped
2. Add and brown:
1 carrot, chopped (sometimes I add more)
1 lb. Italian sausage
3. Add:
4 cans diced tomatoes
4 cans tomato sauce
~1 Tbsp. salt
2-3 Tbsp. dried basil
1 bay leaf
pepper to taste
4. Simmer sauce all day long. Add tom paste to thicken if needed
5. Cook 1-2 packages rigatoni AL DENTE (two boxes will make 1 1/2 casseroles)
6. Put pasta in dishes and add:
2 lbs. mozarella cheese, cubed
7. Pour sauce over and mix together
6. Cover and Bake at 350 until hot through. Serve with fresh grated parmesan cheese!

It feeds an army but it freezes well and is great for dinner parties!

This makes enough for two pizzas:

1 1/2 cups warm water
1 Tbsp. yeast
Dissolve yeast in water

Add, mix and knead:
1-2 Tbsp. sugar (sometimes I add this early to the yeast mix to activate it)
1 tsp. salt
4 cups flour

(Preheat oven with pizza stone at 450 for at least 30 minutes)
Let dough rise until double, punch it down and let it rest a few minutes.
Smooth cornmeal on your pizza peel. Form dough into a circle and top as you like! We like the Contadina canned pizza sauce-one can does two pizzas. Our favorite toppings are pepperoni, sausage, olives, and artichoke hearts!
Slide onto your stone and bake for ten minutes or until cheese is melted and edges are golden!

And...indulge me for one more! I know, I'm going nuts again!

Chicken Milano

2-3 chicken breasts, cut in bite size chunks
1/4 onion, chopped and 1 minced garlic clove.
Saute garlic, onion and chicken until chicken is lightly browned in a little olive oil (enough to coat pan)

Stir in:
1 can tomato soup
1 4oz. can mushrooms, undrained (can use fresh but might want to add a little water to thin the sauce)
1/2 tsp. basil
2 medium zucchinis, sliced
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
2 dashes oregano (I use more!)
Boil then simmer for 20 minutes covered, stirring occasionally.
Serve over rice!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Mama mia! A new recipe category!

The next recipe category is...ITALIAN!

Not looking for anything authentic necessarily, just post your fave pizza and pasta recipes!

Thanks for your participation thus far!

Stroller Struggle

Is it just me, or does it seem like elevators in department stores are extremely hard to find?! Sometimes it's even more difficult to find an associate who can tell you where one is! Maybe it's just because I'm in a new place and getting used to new stores. I'm not a big mall shopper, and pre-baby I would just zip through at a fast walking pace and get to the store I needed to go to and could be out of there in 10 minutes. Now I just count on being there a little bit longer. I used to live near the Mall of America and there seemed to be only two elevators in the actual mall part and people would be like lined up with their strollers trying to get a chance to get on the elevator. If the baby is awake, I prefer to Bjorn her and hit the stairs!

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Sugar Cookies

Several years ago one of my piano student's brought these to a piano party. His Mom made them and they were absolutely delicious even without frosting! (They are fabulous with frosting also.)

1 cup shortening
1 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
4 cups flour
1 1/2 t. cream of tartar
1 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 t. vanilla.

Mix all. Bake at 360 degrees. 8-10 min. Sprinkle sugar on while still warm.

Mrs. Field's Dark Rich Chocolate Cookies

2 1/2 c. flour
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/2 c. cocoa
1 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. sugar
1 c. butter
3 large eggs
2 t. vanilla
2 c. chocolate chips

Combine butter, sugars, eggs, and vanilla. Mix. Add baking soda, salt, and flour. Mix and add chocolate chips. Bake at 300 degrees for 10-15 minutes.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Oatmeal Cookies

I have a secret, but it's not a very big one and I'm sure a lot of you share this secret with me. I love to eat cookie dough when I make cookies! However, I have to feel guilty when I eat dough that has raw eggs in it because I know it's not healthy. So, that said, I have the perfect oatmeal cookie recipe because there are no eggs in it and I haven't come across any other recipes that don't call for eggs.

2 cups brown sugar
1 cup shortening
1/2 cup milk (soy milk is okay, too)
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
4 cups oatmeal

1) Mix everything but the oatmeal together.
2) Add the oatmeal. I know it seems like a lot but it all fits in there, you just have to use your muscles!
3) If you want perfectly round cookies you can shape them into a ball before you put them on an ungreased cookie sheet. After that, wet the bottom of a glass and flatten the cookies out. But if you're like me just slop the dough on there and it'll taste great anyway!
4) Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes.
5) Enjoy!

My method:
Only follow steps 1,2, and 5!

Sour Cream Sugar Cookies

Ever wanted to know how to make the kind of sugar cookies that they sell at grocery store bakeries? You know, the thick, fluffy, amazing ones? Here is a recipe to do it, thanks to my mother-in-law.

1 c margarine (Not butter! If you don't like margarine because of the partially hydrogenated oils, use Smart Balance margarine.)
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 c sugar
1/2 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 c sour cream
4 1/2 c flour

Mix all ingredients together until dough holds together but doesn't stick to your fingers when you pinch it. Cover and store in fridge overnight.

The next day, remove dough from fridge and let it soften back to room temperature. Roll out portions onto lightly floured countertop until dough is about 1/2 inch thick (you want it nice and thick). Use cookie cutter of choice to make cute shapes, then put onto ungreased cookie sheet (the bright silver sheets, not ones coated with teflon, are best). Bake 12-15 minutes, or until cookies are barely getting brown (if they are golden, they're overdone--13 min works well on our oven).

To decorate, you can use any frosting you want. I personally love cream cheese frosting, so here is my favorite cream cheese frosting recipe:

4 tbs butter or margarine, softened
1 1/2 c powdered sugar
6 oz cream cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
Food coloring (optional)

Combine ingredients and blend until smooth. Add food coloring if desired.

Tomato Soup Spice Cake

Weird-sounding, I know, but it's delicious. My husband asks for it every year for his birthday.

1 pkg (about 18 oz) spice cake mix
1 can (10.75 oz) condensed tomato soup
1/2 c water
2 eggs
2 pkgs (3 oz each) softened cream cheese
1 pkg (1 lb) powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanila extract

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease and lightly flour two 8- or 9-inch round cake pans.
2. In large bowl mix cake mix, soup, water and eggs according to package directions.
3. Pour into prepared pans. Bake 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
4. Cool on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely.
5. While cooling, make cream cheese frosting: beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually blend in sugar and vanilla. If desired, thin with milk.
6. Fill and frost cake with cream cheese frosting.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Squares

2 cups flour
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice*
1 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup canned pumpkin puree (not the whole can!)
1 pkg. semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9x13 pan with foil. Whisk together dry ingredients (flour, spice, soda, salt). Cream butter and sugar until smooth on med.-high speed. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin. (It will look curdled) Reduce to low and add dry ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips. Bake 35-40 minutes.

*can substitute spice with 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 3/4 tsp. ginger, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, 1/2 tsp. cloves and1/2 tsp. allspice (I must confess here, I usually substitute but don't have giner or allspice and Laura and Linz have never noticed! :)
Super easy and always a crowd pleaser!

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Best-Ever Cinnamon Rolls

I make these for General Conference. They are a 5-hour endeavor but they really are the BEST EVER.


  • 1-1/2 packages (about 3-1/4 teaspoons) dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 4 to 5 cups sifted flour
  • melted butter
  • brown sugar
  • cinnamon
  • raisins (optional)
Vanilla Frosting:
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • milk or cream (2 to 4 tablespoons)


Add the warm water to the yeast and soak 10 minutes.

Scald milk; pour over the shortening. Add sugar and salt and cool to tepid. Add the dissolved yeast and beaten egg. Add 4 cups flour adding one at a time beating after each addition.

Dough should be soft yet firm enough to handle.

Knead on floured board until elastic and smooth. Avoid too much flour. Turn dough into well oiled bowl. Let rise for 1-1/2 hours.

Press dough down and divide into workable size. Roll dough out into a rectangle. Cover with melted butter. Layer with a generous thick layer of brown sugar. Sprinkle on cinnamon as desired. If you like raisins, layer on a layer of raisins. Roll up jellyroll fashion.

Using a scissors or a piece of string, cut off slices about 1 to 1-1/2 inches thick. Place slices in an 8 or 9 inch round greased cake pan. Place one slice in the middle and other slices around it. Press rolls down to even out and fill pan. Let rise until rolls fill the pan generously...about another hour.

Bake in a 350 degree F oven about 15 - 20 minutes. If rolls get too brown, cover with a piece of tine foil until the end of baking. Do not over bake rolls.

Remove immediately from pan by inverting onto a plate and then tip over onto another plate to right the rolls.

For the Frosting:
In a medium bowl, place sugar, butter and vanilla. Then stir in enough milk or cream to reach a thick, hardly-able to stir consistency. Spread over warm rolls as soon as they are placed on a plate to let the frosting melt and run into the rolls.

Peanut Butter Fudge

My mother-in-law made this at Christmas and it was divine.

Peanut Butter Fudge
4 c sugar
1/2 c butter
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk (fat-free is fine)
1 t vanilla
12 oz crunchy peanut butter
7 oz marshmallow creme

Boil sugar, butter and milk, stirring frequently until it forms a softball* (about 15 min). Remove from heat and add everything else. Stir by hand until it loses its gloss and becomes very thick (about 8minutes). Spread in lightly buttered pan and cool.

*Soft ball means you can drop a little in a cup of cold water, pull it out, and form a soft ball with it that keeps its shape pretty well.

Recipe Reminder

Come on girls, the dessert portion of our cookbook is looking pretty slim. I understand that that's our be slim...especially after that last post "Ditching" But, please make sure you share any great dessert recipes that you love before the week is over. Thanks!