Saturday, March 10, 2012

update on 2012

Yikes!!! Life in 2012 has been INSANE so far! I have been so incredibly busy that a number of things had to fall by the wayside in order for me to get ANY sleep at all, and unfortunately, this blog became one of those casualties. Sigh.

Life has slowed down a bit now that March has arrived. Even though I haven't posted anything in a while, I've still been pinning and creating based on those pinspirations. Here is a giant update of all the Pinterest-related things that have happened in the past month or so:


Cheeseburger Soup (recipe can be found HERE)
Wow. This soup was D-licious! My family was very skeptical when I told them I was making a soup modeled after a cheeseburger, but they changed their tune when they tasted it! I made a HUGE batch (because I had full faith that it would be amazing) and it disappeared in a matter of days. I will definitely be making this one again!

Taco Chicken
There are a million variations of "shredded chicken made in the crock pot" recipes on Pinterest, but I actually followed the recipe that a friend gave me. The process is so easy that I don't know if calling it a recipe is really the right word. Here's what you do:
Combine 1 can cream of chicken soup with 1 jar salsa in a crock pot. Add frozen chicken. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour, then cook on low until chicken shreds easily when you poke it with a fork. (Sometimes I add water if the sauce looks too thick, but if the chicken is frozen I don't usually have to add any.) So easy and tastes great!
Now here's the best part: There was a pin on Pinterest saying that if you put chicken in a standing mixer and mix it on low, you will have perfectly shredded chicken in seconds without doing any work. I couldn't wait to try this because the shredding part is my least favorite job. It worked PERFECTLY! Shredded chicken in seconds! I will be doing this for every shredded chicken recipe from now until I die. Seriously.
I also realized that taco chicken would be an amazing filling for chicken enchiladas, so I will be trying that in the near future as well. Yum!

Lemon-Dill Chicken (recipe can be found HERE)
mmmmm I love anything with lemon and I love anything with dill, so I was really excited to try this recipe. It turned out great! I didn't make skewers because I didn't have any skewers and it was really cold out so I didn't want to use the grill. Instead, I just marinated the chicken as directed in the recipe and then pan seared them. I chopped the chicken into bite-sized pieces and topped salads or mixed it into other recipes all week long. I will definitely make this again, and hopefully the next time it will be warmer so I can try the grilled version.

PB&J Smoothie (recipe can be found HERE)
I am enjoying the end of one of these smoothies as I write this. SO GOOD. I make smoothies for breakfast every day and was getting bored with my standby combinations, so it was the perfect time to experiment with this recipe. I didn't really follow her recipe, I just used her concept of combining peanut butter and jelly in a smoothie. I made my strawberry smoothie as usual and added a tablespoon or two of peanut butter. I've made it two days in a row now, and I'll probably have one tomorrow, too!

Spasanga (recipe can be found HERE)
All I can say is WOW. Whoever came up with this recipe is a genius. My friends just had a baby boy and I wanted to take them dinner one day to help with all the craziness of life with a new baby. I came across this recipe as I was deciding what to make them and it fit my needs for something that could last for a few meals and is easily reheated.
The recipe was easy to follow, and although I didn't actually get to taste it, I received RAVE reviews :o) I will be making this for my family in the near future since I still have most of the ingredients in the fridge!

Zucchini Fries (recipe can be found HERE)
mmmm I love anything called a fry. Ha. My vegetarian brother was home for dinner one day and we decided to try these for our happy hour snack. The dipping sauce paired with this recipe was great, but we thought the actual fries were pretty bland. If we try them again we thought we would add some extra seasoning to the coating of the zucchini sticks so that they would have some zing on their own.

Roasted Green Beans and Mushrooms (recipe can be found HERE)
This recipe looked SO GOOD on Pinterest but we were disappointed with the results. (I guess it was bound to happen eventually!) I think we baked them a bit too long so they were a little dry and not very flavorful. I would try this recipe again, but in a smaller batch and with more marinade.

Zucchini "Noodles"
I found a pin that suggested making "noodles" out of vegetables for a carb-free alternative to pasta noodles. The pin led to a picture but no website, so HERE is the link to the pin. My sister and I decided to give up carbs for Lent this year. It has been going well, but she was really craving pasta this week so we decided to make these as an alternative and stay on the "no carb wagon." She used a vegetable peeler to make long strips of zucchini and yellow squash. After blanching them in boiling water and draining them, we topped them with a piece of salmon and some delicious white wine reduction sauce that she created. She said it met her need for a pasta dish, and I thought it was a great alternative that stayed within our dietary guidelines for Lent. Awesome!

Pirate Snacks
I have been active within the Hungarian Girl Scouts for my entire life. They have a mardi-gras costume party for the little scouts every year and this year's theme was Pirates! I found some great ideas for pirate parties on Pinterest, and decided to make these snacks. All I did was make blue jello in clear party cups and then top them with a quarter of an orange with a toothpick flag stuck in it. Ta-Da! Pirate boats!
The kids loved them and the parents did too! The snack was healthy but still exciting, and they really enjoyed them.

There are a TON of people in my life who are having babies lately, and I've been giving my sewing machine a workout making all kinds of baby gifts.

Onesie with faux vest (Find it HERE)
I fell in love with this adorable onesie when I saw it on Pinterest, but it took forever for someone to have a boy so I could finally make it!! I bought some cotton fabric in a "grandpa vest" pattern, some wooden buttons, and a white, long-sleeved onesie. I didn't use a pattern, I just cut the fabric to the size of the onesie and sewed it all together. I LOVE how it turned out and I can't wait to see him wear it!

Burp Cloths (find it HERE)
I found a great picture tutorial for making burp cloths using hand towels. (What a great idea!) I made a couple to give with the onesie and they turned out really well.

Finally, I wanted to share with you a great blog that I stumbled across through Pinterest. I spent the better part of a Saturday browsing through posts on "One Good Thing by Jillee" and I can't wait to see what she comes up with next!

If you actually made it all the way to the end of this post...congratulations! You deserve a pat on the back for your perseverance! Thanks for reading, and I promise I will stay on top of postings in the future :o)

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