Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Menu Plan for Week of 2/27 Part Deux...The Recipes...

Michelle over at Michelle's Little Piece Of Heaven reminded me that I didn't include any recipes, so here are the winning recipes from last week... 

Grilled Honey Chicken with Oven Roasted Potatoes and Steamed Broccoli with Greek Seasoning
This was a big hit!  It was cold and windy so I didn't grill the chicken.  I sliced it as I would for stir fry and cooked it stovetop.  HUGE hit!  NO leftovers!
1.5 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 c chili sauce (I used the Great Value brand)
1 lemon, juiced (I just used real lemon lemon juice)
3 T honey
1 T Olive oil
1/2 tsp thyme

In a ziplock bag, combine chicken, chili sauce, lemon, honey, olive oil and thyme.
Chill for 30 minutes.
Remove from marinade and grill.
(I cut my chicken into strips like I would for stirfry and kept all of the marinade with it to cook in a pan since the weather was too cold and windy to grill)
I also put the broccoli into the sauce and chicken like a stir fry and a side of brown rice.

Oven Roasted Potatoes
Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Combine 3 lb red potatoes, quartered
1 T Olive Oil
2 tsp rosemary
Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until tender.

BBQ Quesadillas with Fruit
NO LEFTOVERS Again!  This one is definitely a keeper!

Crock pot recipe makes enough chicken for the smoked chicken white chili too.
4 lb split chicken breasts (I used boneless skinless breasts)
18 oz bottle BBQ sauce (I used KC Masterpiece Hickory Smoke Sauce)
8 oz shredded fiesta blend cheese
Flour Tortillas (I used low carb tortillas which worked very well with much less sodium and fat and carbs)
Olive Oil
Place chicken in Crock-Pot.
Add 1/4 c water.
Cover; cook all day.
Move;  cool slightly.
Take off skin; de-bone & shred meat (just shred if you used boneless skinless breasts)  Save half of the meat for the Smoked chicken White Chili
In a bowl, toss chicken w/BBQ sauce to coat.
On each tortilla, spread 1/2 c meat on one side; top w/cheese.
Fold in half.
Add 1 tsp olive oil to hot skillet or griddle; brown each quesadilla on both sides to melt cheese.
Cut into wedges.

Smoked Chicken White Chili with Cornbread
I actually switched this one and the pork chops.  The White Chicken Chili turned out Oh So Good!  Lots of it for more meals--I filled the crockpot with the chili, so there was a LOT, but we ate a LOT!

This recipe uses the remainder of the chicken from Wednesday...
(the original recipe cooks this in a dutch oven, but I used the crock pot again)
1 stick butter
1 lg onion, chopped fine
4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
3 tsp minced garlic
5+ Jalapeno slices, chopped (I used green bell pepper because my parents don't do spicy hot)
2 T flour
4 chicken bouillon
4 c boiling water
2 T liquid smoke
2 c milk
2 cans great northern beans, undrained (I used dried great northern beans (7 oz dry beans is one can cooked) that cooked in the crock-pot with the other ingredients to avoid all of the sodium and fat in the canned beans)
1 can white corn, undrained (I used frozen white shoepeg corn to avoid the sodium)
3 c shredded chicken
4 oz shredded cheddar cheese

In pan, melt butter; saute' onion, garlic, celery and jalapenos until softened.
Blend in flour, stirring to break up clumps.
Dissolve bouillon in 4 c boiling water.
Gradually add broth, liquid smoke and milk to mixture.
Bring to a boil.
(at this point if you are using the canned beans and canned corn, you can just combine everything and heat through---otherwise...)
Put in crock-pot with beans, corn and chicken.
Cook on high for 4-6 hours or until beans are soft.
Top with shredded cheese if desired.

Serve with cornbread.

Mandarin Pork Chops with Rice & Steamed Asian Veggies
Once again, no leftovers!  This one is a keeper and doesn't take long to make! :)  Bonus!

1.5 lbs boneless pork chops
11 oz can mandarin oranges, drained, reserving juice (I used light juice because I couldn't find packed in water)
1/4 c brown sugar
1/4 c ketchup
1 T vinegar (I used balsamic)
1 tsp mustard (I used prepared yellow mustard)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon

In a large skillet, brown pork chops; drain.
Combine juice from oranges, brown sugar, ketchup, vinegar, mustard, salt and cinnamon.
Add to pork mixture with oranges.
Cover and simmer for 45 minutes.

Serve with rice and steamed Asian veggies.

These recipes are all from Emeals.com with some changes that I have noted to work with low sodium, low fat, low carb and low sugar for heart and diabetic diets.


Monday, February 27, 2012

Menu Plan for Week of 2/27

Last week I did a menu plan and blogged it for the first time.  I thought it might be fun to critique how everything turned out...

Apple-Cheese Frittata with Broccoli
Two of us were okay with it, and two didn't like it, so out it goes!  Sorry Apple-Cheese Frittata!  You're fired!

Grilled Honey Chicken with Oven Roasted Potatoes and Steamed Broccoli with Greek Seasoning
This was a big hit!  It was cold and windy so I didn't grill the chicken.  I sliced it as I would for stir fry and cooked it stovetop.  HUGE hit!  NO leftovers!

BBQ Quesadillas with Fruit
NO LEFTOVERS Again!  This one is definitely a keeper!

Smoked Chicken White Chili with Cornbread
I actually switched this one and the pork chops.  The White Chicken Chili turned out Oh So Good!  Lots of it for more meals--I filled the crockpot with the chili, so there was a LOT, but we ate a LOT!

Mandarin Pork Chops with Rice & Steamed Asian Veggies
Once again, no leftovers!  This one is a keeper and doesn't take long to make! :)  Bonus!

So, 4 out of 5 isn't bad!

So, on to this week:

Garlic Seasoned Hamburgers with Mashed Potatoes

Teriyaki Chicken with Oven Baked Potatoes

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

Pot Luck--eating out!

Fish probably.  During Lent all of the Catholic Churches have the most tasty Fish Frys!  yum!

Have a great week! 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Thursday's Things In A Row (On Sunday)...Valentines...

Pat at A View From The Edge has Thursday's Things In A Row.  I have been bad and missed it for a couple of weeks, but here I am to catch up on Valentine's Day celebrations...

On Valentine's Day my parents and I headed off to Columbia, MO for a lunch at Cracker Barrel.  I LOVE THAT PLACE!!!!  A little shopping and a lot of good food!  yay!

So here are my Valentines...Mom and Dad...

Here is a row of tables with the oil lamps...

And out on the porch is this row of rockers...there is even double rockers for lovers...

On Friday, my Valentine, Gman, flew in so Mom and Dad and I surprised him at Olive Garden for another Valentine's dinner.  Oh YUMMMMM!!!!  It has been a while since I have been there, but oh man was the food good!  And I topped mine off with one of those little shooters--Amaretto Tiramisu!  Hurt me!  It was so good!
Here are mom and dad--see mom showing off her sassy pink fingernails?  Cute huh?

So, Happy Belated Valentine's Day--or as I like to say, Happy VD!!!!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

We Are Grandparents!

I just received a text message from our son.  We are grandparents!

Isn't she cute?
Her name is Roxie.  

Welcome to the family Roxie!  :)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Menu Plan for Week of 2/19

I noticed that some of you like to post your menus for the coming week.  This week I am actually getting it together to cook for poor Gman and I thought I would share with you!  

This is always subject to change without notice!  

Thursday is Meals On Wheels delivery day when dad and I deliver and then go to lunch and then head to Wal-Mart for their shopping.

Last week we headed out for an extra excursion to a local Apiary to get local fresh honey.  Yum!  :)  I got a quart of honey and 100 Amaretto flavored honey sticks. Yum Again!!!!  Dad and I dove into those on the drive home...

This week we are headed to the Amish stores.  I want some of their yummy butter and some dried herbs and veggies and some quinoa (pronounced keenwa), lebanon balogna and I am sure I will find some other goodies!  Yum again!

Apple-Cheese Frittata with Broccoli

Grilled Honey Chicken with Oven Roasted Potatoes and Steamed Broccoli with Greek Seasoning

BBQ Quesadillas with Fruit

Smoked Chicken White Chili with Cornbread

Mandarin Pork Chops with Rice & Steamed Asian Veggies

We eat leftovers on the weekend or Gman cooks!  ;-D

PS  I subscribe to emeals.com and receive 2 menus per week which gives us 14 recipes to choose from plus the shopping list!!!!!  I subscribe to:  Low Fat Wal-Mart Meal Plan and Regular Wal-Mart Meal Plan.  I chose the Wal-Mart plans because when moving around in the 5th wheel, there is always a Wal-Mart nearby!

Why 2 menus?  Well, sometimes I just don't like some of the recipes on one list, so I get the recipes on the other list.  

We eat a low-fat, low sodium diet but it is quite easy to convert the regular menu for our diet since I have been doing it so long.

Happy Saturday!  

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day 2012

More of the postcards from my grandmother's collection...

For Our Boys In Service...

Don't forget that once you get her heart, you have one more thing to do!

Have a most Wonderful and Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Thursday's Things In A Row...Happy Valentine's Day!

When I was at the store the other day, I saw all of these cute boxes lined up just waiting to hold that special gift for that special person...

And a bunch of kisses--except for one that seems a little shy!
Joining Pat at A View From The Edge for Thursday's Things In A Row.  Check out her blog and see all of the fun rows!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Fake It Til You Make It?

This came to mind the other day when I was catching up on some of the other blogs and found that many are talking about happiness right now.  Well, with longer nights and shorter chilly days it is something we do think about more often.

My hubby of almost 32 years knows me better than most.  He has always maintained that he really likes the fact that I have a positive attitude and that is something he has always appreciated about me.

Let me tell you about a time when I didn't have a positive attitude and how it was "fixed".

Stay with me though...

I had an awful pregnancy.  I was sick the whole 9 months.  I was so sick that from my 12th to my 14th week of pregnancy I was in the hospital on IV's because I was so sick.  I looked something like this:

During this pregnancy we moved 3 times, living in 4 houses.   I tried to go back to work but just could not handle it and under doctor's orders quit for the duration even though I really loved working!

During the last couple of months of my pregnancy, I had to lay down all of the time because when I stood, the baby was pressing on my blood supply and I would faint.  Oh and I was STILL sick!  

Add to that it was summer and one of the worst summers on record and the local lake that supplied the water "turned over" which caused the water to taste terrible and a warning to be issued for children and pregnant women not to drink it.

Back then, bottled water was not as it is today.  You could get it in a gallon jug or the 5 gallon water cooler jugs but that was all.  No cute little individual bottles.

3 months after I gave birth to a wonderful bouncing healthy baby boy (with whom I fell completely in LOVE the first moment I looked at him!) we had the opportunity to lease purchase an old 1960's double wide mobile home.  This was during the time when mortgage rates were running 18-22%--yes folks--that's right!  18-22% for a MORTGAGE loan!  

Of course, we never thought we would be able to own ANYTHING with those kinds of interest rates!  

The trailer was set up in a mobile home park and we moved in forthwith.  Uh, after moving in we found out that the furnace worked.  Great!  The next summer, however, was another scorcher and we found out that though the a/c ran, it didn't cool the house much and to run it cost us an arm and leg for not much relief.  With a baby!

Money was tight since we were both raised by stay at home moms and we had decided that I would not go back to work and would stay at home and raise our child.

We were kind of stuck in the trailer, had only one car and no money to speak of and after always being trim, I was now very overweight.

The small country church that we were attending seemed very cliquish and had few if any other babies.  I didn't feel a part of that church at all.

I was miserable.  I was depressed.  I saw the world in shades of black.  Not even sure if there was any gray peeking through.  (are you depressed now????  Well, hang in there with me...)

One day I decided that my life was so miserable it had to change!

I don't do fake real well, so faking it was not a real good answer for me, though I don't think people actually realized how I was really feeling.

I tried a thankfulness journal but it didn't help.  What did I have to be thankful for?  (don't judge!  Just read on!)

And the thankfulness journal was more of an internal thing--it just didn't work for the external world problem!

So, one week while sitting in church listening to yet another sermon on how we should be thankful for what we have, I thought I should have SOMETHING to be thankful for, right?

I made the decision that day to write one honest Thank You note each week to someone.  Anyone.  For ANYTHING... (thank you for not running up on the grass and running over me--uh NO  Thank you for the bill for my electric/water/gas that makes my life easier/harder to pay--uh NO!  Thank you for raining in the windows the other night and getting everything wet even though it didn't cool down enough to feel like we could close the windows--uh NO NO NO!)
That was a hard Thank You to write!  It was so hard to find something.  I finally found a little thing and wrote the note.  The next week, the person who received it was so pleased that I thought of them and told me so.  It had lifted their week!

The second week was again hard to find, but I did and again, the person was pleased.  Rays of light were beginning to pierce that black world...

After a while, I was sending out 2 and then 3 and then 4 and more Thank You cards each week.  The world was in color again!  People were friendly and the world was no longer tilted but was righting itself!  The more I LOOKED for things to be thankful for, the more I FOUND things to be thankful for.  Hmmmm....
By looking for good things to thank people for, I had taught myself to see the good--no matter how small--and after a while, that was the norm for me--to see that good stuff.  It became natural to see the good, the help, the fine people that were sent across my path.

We still lived in that trailer, with one car, with me overweight and staying home to care for our son while pinching pennies to do so, but now the world was brighter and friendlier.  Because MY VIEW had changed I was looking for the good stuff.  Because I decided to look harder and make myself accountable by sending those honest notes each week.

I now find that when I smile, people smile back and the day is brighter.  And that is GOOD!

So, fake it til you make it?  Not so much for me.

But an honest peering through the darkness to actually pick out the good stuff, while making me accountable through the written word, brings about a whole new way of viewing the world--And it is good!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

One For The Money...

Last night we ventured out to the movies with our friends.  Gman and I rarely go to the movies, but being in the mood for a light hearted romp, we decided on the movie "One For The Money" based on the Stephanie Plum series written by Janet Evanovich.

I have read all of the Stephanie Plum novels and was looking forward to the movie--with reservations.  You know how sometimes they make a movie from a book and really mess it up?

Well, this show is really pretty much in keeping with the spirit of the books.  They added scenes from many of the books in the series (Like when Grandma Mazur shoots the turkey at the dinner table--not in book one, but oh so funny!) and Ranger talks in complete sentences and has actual conversations in this movie.

While sitting by the restrooms waiting for the others after the movie, I heard others talking about the Stephanie Plum novels and started chatting.  We had a great time comparing the movie and books and all agreed that though it included many scenes from other books, it kept the spirit and was fun.  The books are a SCREAM and so funny!  Even the guys in the chatting hall group were reading the books!  LOL

All in all, I have to say that it is really pretty funny and a fun, light evening.

After the movie we headed for Bandana's BBQ.  It's been a while since warm BBQ weather, so it was time to enjoy some smoky meat with choice of sauces and sides!  Yum!

We had a fun time while eating and then the manager came over to the table to chat for a bit.  Nice guy and good sense of humor (you need that with us!  LOL)

Our waitress, Tara, was a doll and we found out that she is getting ready to go into the armed forces which endeared her to all of us.  A brave choice.

As we were sitting there chatting, Tara asked if we would like a dessert.  Uh, no, plenty to eat actually.

This started a conversation in which Gman and I extolled the virtues of the homemade cobblers with ice cream that we like to eat at Marlene's out in Marthasville, MO.

Then we all looked at each other and decided that some cobbler or pie with coffee would be a lovely way to end the evening and who has better pie and desserts than Bob Evan's!

We Piled into the van and headed across the bridge to Bob's.  I was in the mood for the Cherry bread that they only have in February.  It is different because it is made with maraschino cherries.  Oh Yum and double YUM YUM!  The other's got pie (coconut cream and lemon cream) and cake (the biggest piece of chocolate cake with ice cream, chocolate syrup and whipped cream you have ever seen!  Yikes!) and we became acquainted with our waitress, Katrina.  She was a real hurricane!  (okay--Gman and I both thought of that at the same time!  Is that SICK or what????)

Katrina is quite a gal and a real treat to talk with.  Great waitress as well!

So, full of BBQ and sugar, we finished what turned out to be our progressive dinner, headed back to drop our friends off at their house and then head back home.

It wasn't until I got home that I saw that two pieces of that cherry bread had 558 calories and 24 g of fat!  Oh MY!!!!  I was glad I only ate one slice and brought one home!  But, YUM...  :-)


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Thursday's Things In A Row...Denny's

Hi all!  Today I am joining Pat in Thursday's Things In A Row.  This is so much fun and what fun I had getting this shot!

Gman and I were having lunch at Denny's.  We noticed that there was a long table set up for a large group and it turned out to be a group of ladies from Lakeview (that's what they told us!).  They were so cute and such good company!  What a fun group!

So, as we were leaving, I just asked if I could take their picture and put it on my blog.  "What?", they asked...

"The World Wide Web", I told them.

Oh sure!  So, here they are waving at you!  Aren't they a fun bunch????

On the way out Gman said, "Thursday's Things In A Row?"

Yep...He knows me too well.  LOL

  ;-D  Happy Thursday all!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Office Revealed...

Yep folks, I am still alive!  Uncle Sam wanted some funds and forms and you know what a task master HE can be!  You don't mess around with Sam!

 You may have noticed by your blogs that I am catching up.  I am up to Friday, Jan 27, so I still have a ways to go, but what fun!  You guys have been busy!

Well, I have been busy as well.  As I started in this blog, BHG has their little organizational guide that I like to follow.  One room or area per month and in a year you are organized...or at least better.  ;-D

So, this is the before...don't judge...or do...
You'll be happy to know that I shredded and discarded 4 of those big black bags of stuff that I was totally keeping for some strange reason!  Sheesh!

So, here it is now...
Look!  You can see the top!  :-D
Of course, living in an RV, you find space where you can so this is actually the dining table.  We tend to eat sitting in the living room so what the heck, right?
I used to collect tins--this one seemed perfect for my pens and pencils...

I needed something to hold my post-it notes and letter openers so I meandered down the street to the local antique shop and came home with this...

How fun is that?  AND it won't break!

Then, I was trying to decide where to keep the bills and saw this napkin holder (which I had!) and decided it would work perfectly!  Sorry about the NASCAR holograms!  I have to enter those at NASCAR.com, but they had the site down to revamp that area for the upcoming season.  I can put them in beginning today though!  I hope there are good prizes!  :) 
Not sure if you noticed but above the desk are very solid valance boxes (made of fabric covered wood) that make a shelf, so I am using that space as well...
I would like to put the checks in one of the wooden boxes but I am afraid I will forget where I put them!   A mind is a terrible thing to lose...don't judge...

This row of boxes were actually from candles that I purchased at Sam's Club after Christmas several years ago.  Candles smell wonderful and the boxes are perfect for cute storage of small items...

This is the before of the stand at the end of the "desk".

And now...

This is the other filing drawer before...
 And now...
I just LOVE this lamp!  I found it at a little shop that was going out of business last year and had everything something like 80% off.  Yay!  Well, not for the shop but yay for the deal!

And I found this little leather covered wooden box years ago in a little boutique in our small town in KS.  It just called to me and has been hold candles--when you open it, the aroma is divine!

I hope you liked the tour of my "office".  

February is the Kitchen--Oye!  I have been thinking about some things in there and have some plans for it that I think you are gonna enjoy...even in such a small space!

Thanks for dropping by!  Have a great day!