Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Turkey Day!

My kind of Thanksgiving diet...
Found this on Pintrest and had to share!
Happy Thanksgiving to you all!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wednesday Wellness: Baked Apple Slices

Before you indulge in all those delicious Thanksgiving goodies, check out this recipe.
Not only is it healthy, it tastes great and makes the house of a scent of the season throughout!

1.  Cut apple in half.  

2.  Core the apple.
(After trying a spoon, melon ball, and butter knife, I found the knife to be the best bet)

3.  Cut apple in slices.
4.  Arrange apples on baking sheet and sprinkle with cinnamon.

5.  Bake at 275 degrees for 2 hours, flipping over once half way through.



Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tuesday Treats: Cookies 'n Cream Cookies

Variations of this recipe have been floating around Pintrest…here's the one I tried and LOVED…and so did all the nurses; they were gone in minutes!

1/2 cup butter, softened
6 Tbsp sugar
6 Tbsp brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
12 Oreo's, crushed

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Cream together butter and sugars until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
3.  Add egg and vanilla and mix well.
4.  In another bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt.  
5. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet and mix until well blended.

6.  Gently fold in Oreo pieces.

7.  Scoop dough onto baking sheet about 2 inches apart. 
8.  Bake for 8-9 minutes until edges just start to brown.  
9.  Let cool on baking sheet for a minute and then transfer to rack to cool completely.


Even though Oreo's are great with milk, this time of year I love a warm beverage with cookies.  I made a Chai Tea Latte to sip on while I enjoyed a few cookies.


Monday, November 21, 2011

Wedding Christmas Ornament

My latest creation…A Christmas Ornament made from Wedding Invitation. 
What a great gift to give to a newlywed couple!  

One I made for my friend, Leslie, and her hubby.  

Hard to see in this picture, but this is my sister's "creamsicle" colored invitation with matching bow.

Here is one in black and white, which look very elegant for those formal invitations.

And two of my latest…
A rustic invitation.  I tried to tie burlap on this one, but it kept fraying :(
But I think the charcoal ribbon looked pretty nice too.

And my newest favorite (because I love green and navy)...


Friday, November 18, 2011

Scents of the Holiday!

I love having a candle lit when I have guests over, but I have read and heard that eventually it can make your ceiling look black.  Yuck!  (I think it takes quite a while for this to happen, but regardless, I do not want my newly painted home looking dusky.)

So, I saw a bunch of potpourri recipes on pintrest and decided to try mix one up on my own.  

Ingredients that I used
orange, quartered
 whole cloves
cinnamon sticks

Combine all ingredients and add water.  
Let simmer on low heat.

And for some more great scents to warm up your home, check out the recipe swap over at Flip Flops and Pearls!  


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tuesday Treats: Magic Bars

I made these bars along with the Flourless Peanut Butter cookies I posted about on Thursday, for my wonderful coworkers.  

I had read all these reviews where people said they always made these Magic Bars for their kids and grandkids…this was one easy recipe my mom missed out on baking with us ;)

Not only is it super easy, but very tasty too!

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3/4 cup melted butter
1 can (300 cc) sweetened condensed milk
1 1/3 cups chopped pecans
1 1/3 cups chocolate chips
1 1/3 cup flaked coconut

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 9 X 13 pan.
2.  Combine melted butter with graham cracker crumbs.

3.  Press crumbs into greased pan, spreading evenly with back of spatula.

4.  Spread condensed milk evenly over crumb layer.

5.  Top with pecans, chocolate chips, and coconut.

6.  Bake for about 25-30 minutes, or until lightly browned. 

7.  Let cool completely and cut into bars.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thursday Treats: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

I don't know about you, but this week has been insanely crazy at work!  Go figure…it's a full moon!  And you know what they say about patients when it's a full moon!  

Thankfully, I work with some pretty great people, and decided we all needed a little "pick-me-up" on hump day.  I made these cookies and some Magic Bars (recipe to come Tuesday) for a little treat.  Really, I wanted to bring in some adult beverages, which were very much needed, but figured the company would not appreciate that ;)

I got this recipe from Real Simple magazine, and let me tell you, that's just what this recipe is…Real simple!  

2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  
2.  In large mixing bowl, mix together PB, sugars, eggs, baking soda, and salt until smooth.
3.  Shape dough into balls (about 1 heaping Tbsp each) and place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.  

4.  Using tines of fork, flatten each ball, creating a crisscross pattern.

5.  Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until puffed and golden, (about 9-10 minutes).  
The cookies will deflate when cooled
6.  Let them cool slightly on baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Baked Ziti

What is better than a warm, healthy meal on a chilly fall night?  Oh right…a warm, healthy meal with wine and friends!  
I made this baked ziti from my mom's recipe, but adapted some changes to make it a little healthier. 

(Serves 8)
12 ounces uncooked ziti
(I used whole wheat)
2 tsp olive oil
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
(I used 2 tsp minced garlic ~ that's what I had on hand)
1/3 pound ground beef
(I used 1 pound lean ground turkey ~ the 99% fat free)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp salt
 (I used 1/4 tsp)
1/2 tsp pepper 
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 cup mozzarella cheese
(I do NOT skimp here, as I think low fat cheese taste terrible!)

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Cook and drain pasta.  Set aside.
3.  Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for about 2 minutes.  Add ground beef (or turkey) and cook until browned, breaking up meat ~ about 3-5 minutes.  Drain off any fat and set pan back over medium heat.
4.  Add oregano, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper.  Stir to coat beef (or turkey).  Cook until herbs fragrant ~ about 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.  
5.  Spoon small amount of turkey-tomato mixture into bottom of 9 X 13 greased dish.  (just enough to cover surface).  Top with half of cooked ziti.
6.  Next, layer with half of remaining turkey-tomato sauce and half of mozzarella cheese.
7.  Layer with remaining ziti and then top with remaining turkey-tomato sauce.
8.  Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. 

9.  Bake until cheese is golden and bubbly~ 30 minutes.  



Thursday, November 3, 2011

My Latest Creation

It all started after a day of raking the leaves and feeling very inspired by the fall weather to do some crafting.  Headed out to the store for the staples…
fabric, paint, pillow, sushi, and wine :)

I had no clue what I was doing and just attempted to start by measuring...
 …then, added a "D" (yup…back to the maiden name I go!)

…and a border for some fun...

…and Voila!  A cozier spot to sit on a chilly night!