Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday Suppers Edition Eight


(Image courtesy of buttercreambarbie.com)


Well this weekend has just flown by! I can't believe that it is already Sunday evening. Friday night, we met some friends for dinner at a local restaurant. The restaurant has just recently opened, and it is already a favorite of ours. Just your basic southern/country cooking, but it is so good! They serve some of the best biscuits I have ever had, and each table gets a basket of them as soon as they are seated. After a long day at school, it was wonderful to sit down to a glass of tea and those yummy biscuits!

On Saturday, I straightened the house, caught up on laundry, and made a big pot of taco soup. We had our annual soup and chili supper at church, and the taco soup was our contribution to the supper. Today, I went to Bowling Green to meet my sister in law and niece for brunch and shopping. We had brunch here, and then shopped for a few hours before heading home. Stay tuned later this week to hear more about the shopping. Now Mr. P and I are eating soup for dinner and watching the season premier of one of our favorite shows, The Amazing Race.

I found a great slow cooker recipe for Santa Fe Chicken on Preppy Sue's blog this weekend, so I will be making that one day this week. She also featured a recipe for pretzel M & M cookies that sounds really yummy!

My featured recipe this week is Cheese Pennies, which are great with soup, and many other things. They are very similar to a cheese straw, but are more like a cracker. I received this recipe from my aunt many years ago, and I absolutely love them. You can also make the dough and freeze it for future use.

Cheese Pennies

1 lb. sharp grated cheddar cheese
1 cup butter
3 cups plain flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. red pepper (cayenne)
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans

Leave cheese and butter out for several hours or overnight to soften. Mix all ingredients (works best if you mix it with your hands). Dough should be like play dough. Roll into long rolls that are the diameter of a quarter. Wrap in foil and chill for several hours or overnight. Slice and bake at 325 for around 17 minutes, until bottoms are golden brown. Be careful-they will burn easily! Sprinkle with salt right out of the oven.

I discovered some great food blogs this weekend, so hopefully I'll have some new recipes to post about soon! I think I may add foodie blogroll on the side.

Here's a little preview of my shopping finds today:

Have a great week!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday Suppers Edition Seven: Sweet Treats Edition

(Please excuse the different fonts in this post. I've tried about 5 or 6 times to fix it and it just stays the same.)

So the idea of cooking a special Valentine’s dinner tonight has been totally scrapped due to the fact that I am making treats for my staff for tomorrow. It’s
that time of year when school staff get a little stressed, so I thought I would make some sweet treats to give out for Valentine’s Day to let them know how much I appreciate them. I saw an idea for a candy mix over at Mrs. Preppy’s blog. She made it for Halloween with black and orange M & Ms, so I thought I would try it with red and pink ones. They turned out great, but let me give you a warning that this candy mix so addictive! Click on here to see Mrs. Preppy’s directions for making it. Here are the pictures from my process:

I also thought I would make some M and M cookies to go in the bags too.

I basically used my Tollhouse cookie recipe and substituted M & M's for the chocolate chips. Here is the recipe:

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks, 1/2 pound) butter, softened

3/4 cup granulated [white] sugar

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups plain M & M's (1 bag)

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla in large mixer bowl. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in M & M's. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in preheated 375-degree oven for 11-14 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

And here are my cute bags all loaded up in my market tote. Can’t wait to pass them out tomorrow!

(That's actually the back of my market tote-the front has my last name embroidered on it so I didn't want to show it.)

As for Mr. P and me, we are going to meet for dinner tomorrow night after work. Usually we don’t go out, but we’re going to try to meet early since the restaurants get so crowded around here. We had such a busy weekend; I’m looking forward to having a quiet dinner with him.

I've posted more sweet recipes than supper recipes lately. I'll try to get back on track next week!

Wishing all my bloggy friends a very Happy Valentine's Day!


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Paint the Town Red

Been at a basketball tournament all day, but I wanted to get my red collection posted. If you are celebrating Valentine's Day this weekend, have a good time! Hope the weather is as beautiful where you as it is in my area!

Paint the Town Red

Comme des Garcons Play/Red Emblem Oxford-$235 lagarconne.com

Red Swavorski Crystal Heart Earrings-$24 1928.com

Tea and Cakes Suede Bow Shoes-$135 irregularchoice.com

Red Bow Waist Mini Skirt-$65 topshop.com

Chanel Vintage Bag-$2320 farfetch.com (Fitting website since it's a little far-fetched for my bank account!)

Red Belted Pleat Top- awear.com

Heart Red Pillow-$49 roomandboard.com

In Perfect Accordian Coat $120 modcloth.com

Thursday, February 10, 2011

5 Things I'm Into Right Now

Snow, snow, and more snow around here. We have not had a full day of school this week-early release on Monday, out on Tuesday, early release on Wednesday, out Thursday and Friday. One good thing about this never-ending winter is that I have been forced to drive on the roads and I'm getting more comfortable driving in snow. It helps that I have a Jeep Grand Cherokee with 4WD, so I'm pretty comfortable about trying to pull a hill but I am terrified that I am going to slide off the road or into something. I even voluntarily ventured out early today while our road was still snowy. Yay me!

I've seen this posted on several blogs, and it has been a while since I've done this so here are 5 things I'm into right now:

My Nook



I love this little thing. I always read 2-3 books at a time and I love having them all in one little toy that I can carry everywhere.


Burt's Bees with Pomegranate Oil



My lips are so chapped and this little beauty really helps them out. I keep these stashed everywhere-home makeup drawer, purse, desk, Jeep so I can grab one at anytime.


Ipod


I literally do not leave home with out this because I use it everywhere. I play it while driving, I have some instrumental playlists for the office, I have other playlists to use during assemblies and pep rallies at school, and I cannot get on the treadmill without it.


Casting Crowns


I first heard this awesome group when I downloaded the soundtrack to the movie Fireproof (if you are married and you have not seen this movie, buy or rent the DVD now-it's a fantastic movie!) I have CC's new CD and I am listening to it all the time. I'm attending the Women of Joy conference in March and Casting Crowns will be in concert at the conference. I am so excited! Two of my favorite songs on the CD are
Glorious Day and Always Enough.


A sample of the lyrics of Glorious Day


Living, He loved me
Dying, He saved me

Buried, He carried my sins far away

Rising, He justified freely forever

One day He’s coming
Oh glorious day, oh glorious day



And Always Enough

You hold the world within Your hands
And see each tear that falls

Through every fire and every storm
You're always enough, always enough

Your love is peace to the broken

Faith for the widow, hope for the orphan, strength for the weak

Your love is the anthem of nations, rings out through the age
s
And You're always enough for me



Monogrammed Lunch Bag


I received this as a Christmas gift and I love it. I've been trying to eat healthier and that means being prepared. This cute bag holds all my snacks and meals for the day.



Hope everyone's week is going well-it's almost Friday!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Think Pink

Another snow day! I'm relaxing over coffee and waiting for the roads to clear up a little bit before I start my trek to school. Yesterday was an exciting day, thanks once again to the winter weather. I had a meeting about 1 1/2 hours from school. It was snowing a little when I left home, but the weatherman had said that it wouldn't get bad until the evening hours, so no worries, right? Wrong! Sitting in the meeting, I could see the snow falling out the window and the roads getting white so I started to worry. Then I get word that school is dismissing early. Great-it's always a madhouse with early dismissal and here I was far away from school. I was with several other administrators from the district, so we made the decision to leave the meeting and head back to our respective schools. Keep in mind that I am pretty far away from school and it was all country roads to get back. The roads weren't in the best conditions at that point either. We all followed each other back (which made me feel better) until we had to split up to get to our schools. Got back to school in time to load the buses and then waited until all students had been delivered safely home. Then I got to battle the roads once again to get home. Thankfully, I made it home safely, albeit a little tired from my adventurous day!

So we're in the month of all things pink and red, so I thought I'd do a pink post. Hopefully a red post will soon follow! We tend to keep Valentine's Day somewhat low-key-no big presents and I usually cook at home on Valentine's Day because the restaurants around here get so terribly crowded. I'm pretty content with a sweet card and some flowers. Mr. P was very generous on my birthday and at Christmas, so he'd better not go overboard on Valentine's Day. Sometimes he spoils me too much! I do usually plan a special dinner for Valentine's so I'm trying to think of something different. Any suggestions??

Played around on Polyvore (again!) this morning and came up with this little pink collection...


Think Pink

Jack Rogers Palm Beach Sandals-$82

Lilly Eryn Dress Stripe-$298

Philosophy Amazing Grace Hand Cream-$15

Pink Bow Front Top-$60-oasis-stores.com

Buffalo Check Folding Umbrella-$125-barneys.com

Fossil Riley Pink Silicone Multifunction Watch-$95 fossil.com

Love Replica in Pink-$65-abchome.com

MAC Pink Friday Lipstick

Ethos Giant Cup and Saucer Planter/Fruit Bowl

Pink and Silver Dove Milk Chocolate

JoJo Designs Pink and Brown French Toile Throw Pillow-$18 studentmarket.com


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sunday Suppers Edition Six: Superbowl Sunday


(Photo courtesy of blogs.orlandosentinel.com)

It was sunny and in the mid-40’s today-almost felt like spring! Of course, there’s more snow and cold in the forecast for tomorrow, but we certainly enjoyed today. It’s another Sunday Supper with no recipe because in honor of the favorable weather we had grilled steaks and baked potatoes. But it’s also Superbowl Sunday, so I’m going to post a few of my favorite appetizer recipes. We often host a Superbowl Party but this year we decided that we had too many other things going on to have a party. Maybe next year we’ll host one, but it’s kind of nice to relax on the couch and enjoy the game and the commercials this year.

First recipe is so simple, yet it is a favorite with all of our friends. It’s only two ingredients (three if you count the crackers) so it’s easy to always have the items on hand for a last-minute appetizer. I posted this recipe a couple of years ago so if you want a detailed recipe complete with pictures click here.

Italian Cream Cheese Bars

1 6-ounce package cream cheese
1 envelope Good Seasons Italian Dressing Mix
Crackers of your choice
Cut the block of cream cheese in half lengthwise (it will look like two sticks of butter). Sprinkle the dry dressing mix out on a paper plate, and spread it out. Roll the two sticks of cream cheese in the dry mixture, making sure that all sides are covered. Place the sticks on a platter and surround with your favorite crackers. (I had doubled the recipe in the picture above.)

Another favorite of mine is Tortilla Pinwheels. I've seen many variations of this recipe, but this one is my favorite.

Tortilla Pinwheels (Photo courtesy of kraft.com)

5-10” flour tortillas

8 ounces sour cream

1 6-ounce package cream cheese, softened

1 4-ounce can green chiles, diced and drained

1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

½ cup chopped cilantro

Garlic powder and seasoning salt to taste

Parsley

Salsa

Mix all ingredients except parsley and salsa together. Divide and spread evenly over tortillas. Roll up tortillas and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for several hours. Slice into pinwheels, garnish with parsley, and serve with salsa.

And last is one of my favorite dip recipes. I know that there are several variations of this one out there, and I’ve enjoyed the different ones that I have tasted. My personal favorite is the one I found in one my Paula Deen cookbooks.

South Georgia “Caviar” (from Paula Deen’s The Lady and Sons Too)

(Photo courtesy of foodnetwork.com)

2-15 ounce cans black eyed peas, drained

1-15 ounce can whole kernel corn, drained

1-10 ounce can Ro-Tel tomatoes and green chiles

2 cups chopped red bell pepper

½ cup chopped fresh jalapeƱo peppers

½ cup chopped onion

1-8 ounce bottle Italian salad dressing

1-4 ounce jar chopped pimentos, drained

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, stir gently to combine, and refrigerate overnight. Serve with corn chips. This recipe will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Hope you enjoy your Superbowl Sunday!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Happy Saturday!

Wow, what a busy week! I feel like I'm drowning in a sea of deadlines, meetings, and activities. Other than plans for tonight, we have nothing else planned this weekend so hopefully I can get some things accomplished and catch my breath. Laundry, cooking, and straightening up the house are on the agenda for today. You would think this makes me feel more tired, but I always feel more energized when I get all of those tasks accomplished.

On one of my many crazy days this week (read: meetings, meetings, meetings), I went into my closet for one of my go-to feel good looks for the day. Normally I pair this outfit with a red, black, or white turtleneck, but my pale pink turtleneck caught my eye when I was in my closet. I tried it with the outfit and loved the look. A simple change, but it made me feel good all day. Here is the outfit (and can you tell that I have discovered the fun of Polyvore????)

Houndstooth Set


Have a great weekend!