Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Super Simple Recipe

Clint and I have been on a bit of a health kick lately...mostly because we kind of examined what we eat on a daily basis and realized how much junk we do eat! SO we decided to try to eat healthy, and one of our new favorite things is to make salads. We've spent some time making up different ones, but the one that has stuck, the one that he asks me to make almost every day is my own version of a Chef's Salad. Very simple and you can add just about anything else you want to it.

Salad greens (we use a bag from the store of Spring Mix Salad Greens)
Turkey and ham, sliced up
Cheese (I like to put in two kinds, cheddar and mozzarella), cubed into tiny bite sized pieces
Tomato
--and this is where can get creative--
I sometimes will add cut up broccoli, avocado, kidney beans...pretty much anything that is in the house that sounds good. The best part about a salad is that its so easy to pick out the stuff you don't like, and just eat the stuff you do. We top it with whatever dressing we like (Ranch for me, Balsamic Vineagrette for him) and just enjoy.
I love making this because it takes so little time and tastes so good!

Friday, March 27, 2009

wedding pictures...

I've seen some slideshow things on some of your profiles...where did you go to get that? I've finally somewhat organized the pictures from the wedding and some from the open house, and I want to put them up on here. So let me know how to get that done!!! THANKS A MILLION!!!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Recipe Tuesday #2



Manicotti!!

I made this for Clint and my's first Valentine's Day as a married couple. And let me tell you, it was DELICIOUS! I couldn't believe how easy it was too!
*Note: It's kind of a time consuming recipe; it takes 30 or so minutes for prep, and then bakes for about 50 minutes...JUST BEWARE!!! :)

This recipe is out of the Betty Crocker Cookbook - made for 7 servings, so cut it down or add for however many you need.

14 manicotti shells
1 lb ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
2 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 jar tomato pasta sauce (26-30 oz)
2 boxes (9 oz each) frozen chopped spinach, thawed
2 cups small curd cottage cheese
1 can mushroom pieces and stems drained (I omitted this from ours...not a huge fan of mushrooms)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and spray a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray.

Cook and drain manicotti as per package-use MINIMUM time to prevent shells from tearing.

Cook beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until beef is brown. Stir in the pasta sauce.

Squeeze thawed spinach to drain the excess juices, make sure it is pretty dry - use a paper towel to pat dry. In a medium bowl, mix spinach, cottage cheese, mushrooms, 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, nutmeg and pepper.

In the baking dish: spread 1 cup of the beef mixture. Fill manicotti shells with the spinach mixture and place filled manicotti on beef mixture. Pour remaining beef mixture evenly over shells making sure to cover evenly. Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.

Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and baker 20 to 25 minutes longer or until hot and bubbly.

I know, I KNOW super loooong. BUT amazing. Totally worth it! Honestly though...the spinach is a little much. It kind of overtakes the taste (not that its bad, it still tasted wonderful...I like spinach though!), so maybe one package of spinach or one and a half packages. Let me know if you try it, I love this recipe!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mayonnaise Jar and Two Cups of Coffee

I found this on a friend's MySpace page and absolutely LOVED it! It is so incredibly true:

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous "yes."

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

"Now," said the professor as the laughter subsided, "I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things--God, your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions--and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car. The sand is everything else--the small stuff."

"If you put the sand into the jar first," he continued, "there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

"Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first--the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend."

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Recipe TUESDAYS

I'm going to follow in Leighanne's footsteps (and hopefully keep this going for LONGER!!! Haha) and start doing Recipe Tuesdays. Yes, I should REALLY follow her and do Recipe Mondays...but it's Tuesday and I'm going to start today.
For my first recipe, its actually an old favorite of my family's. My mom likes to call it "Poor Man's Stroganoff." It's so good, here we go:

*serves about 4* (leftovers!!!!)
1 lb ground beef
1 family size can of cream of mushroom soup
any kind of noodles: Clint likes the big shells, I like egg noodles (those good curly ones!)
a spoonful of sour cream

Brown the meat and drain the excess fat. Put back into the same pan (I use a jumbo chef pan so I can mix it all in there)
At the same time, start cooking up the noodles as normal. Drain when done.
When the meat is done, put the whole can of cream of mushroom soup in with the meat. Cook that up until hot, but don't let it boil. About five minutes before you are ready to serve, mix the sour cream in. Serve over the noodles.

You can also use rice, but I don't like it with Poor Man's Stroganoff. I tend to only like it with regular stroganoff, which is the same recipe except instead of ground beef you would use slices of, for example, a round roast. That tastes better with rice. And I would put up a picture, but the only pictures I can find don't make this recipe look appetizing, which it most definitely is! Super simple and quick meal. It takes no more than about 20 minutes to make it all. And so delicious. ENJOY

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Vacation!

So this week has been AMAZING! I'm on vacation! LOVE IT! I finally was able to take real time off of work since being married. And it has been lovely. Clint is taking tomorrow and Friday off of work and the real projects will begin. :) We got CD's of our wedding pictures, but the only lame part is that it takes forever and a day to get them onto the computer, so we are slowly but surely doing that. The ones that I do have on my computer are turned on their side and I can't for the life of me figure out how to change it. Its BUGGING me too, cuz I want to show them off but I don't want everyone to have to strain their necks to see them. But as soon as I do, I will display them all! :)
Tomorrow Clint and I will be going down to my mom's house to replace the carpet on the stairs. We have a wonderful puppy who made a BIG mess out of the carpet on the stairs, and we get to replace it. Funny story about Chase to come later...So we get to hang out at Home Depot tomorrow and change out carpet. Yay. *Sense the excitement.* It'll be a nice day though.
So Chase's story...oh man. We were taking a nice drive this afternoon, showing Chase some animals in Atascadero (he barks at all of them, and the horses just stare at him like, "Yeah, right...we'd EAT you!" haha). All of a sudden, on the way home, Clint and I smelled something not so pretty. Chase had POOPED IN MY CAR!!! I felt a little lucky (right, lucky!) because he did it on some clothes that I had there, so it was EXTREMELY easy to clean up. He was in such trouble when we got home though...and we had to give him a bath which he HATES! So that was his punishment. What a day, right? Hope everyone elses day was just as good as ours!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Funniest video I've seen in a while.

I found this online...have to show it off. It is so funny! I love Cameron Diaz and Jimmy Fallon and this just intensifies that! :) Enjoy!