Friday, April 18, 2014

What We Ate - April 18

Everyone has to eat, so I've started a new Friday feature here to share what we ate during the week. Hopefully you will find a few new dinner ideas here.

Monday - Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup

Ward and I were lucky enough to be given tickets to a Phoenix Suns game on Monday and the tickets included dinner. Got to love that. But our kids were all going to be home and needed something they could make for themselves. So grilled cheese was on the menu.

What goes better with grilled cheese than tomato soup? This tomato soup is a quick recipe that I've made many times. The soup tastes so fresh and delicious and it only takes a few minutes to put together. I highly recommend you give it a try.

Tuesday - Honey Lime Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Corn Tacos

This was a Pinterest find and it was really delicious. I used pinto beans instead of black beans, but other than that, I followed the recipe. It was a perfect meatless meal and I'll definitely be making these again. The honey and lime added great flavor to the taco filling.

I used my "inside-out" cooking method to crisp up the cheese on the tacos.

Wednesday - Bean & Cheese Burritos + Salsa

The teenage girls at church did a fundraiser on Wednesday where they sold homemade bean burritos and salsa. Of course, I wanted to support them. We picked up two dozen burritos. I plan to freeze most of them and then have them on hand for quick lunches.

I hear the girls used this salsa recipe from the Pioneer Woman.

Even though I didn't make these burritos, I do like cooking up a tasty pot of bean for burritos. Here's my go-to recipe for crock pot refried beans. All you need is beans and tortillas and dinner is ready.

Thursday - BBQ Beef Sandwiches

Since we'd gone meatless all week, I decided that I'd better throw some meat into our meal plan. I just put a 3 pound roast in the crockpot, poured 3/4 of a bottle of BBQ sauce over the roast and cooked on low for 8 hours. Before eating, I shredded the meat with two forks. This was a perfect meal for our busy come and go night and dinner was ready whenever people were ready to eat.

We used little slider buns and topped the meat with avocado slices and coleslaw.

It was a bit of a simple dinner week around here, but sometimes that is just what is needed.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

My Stitch Fix >> April 2014

My April Stitch Fix box arrived yesterday and I was excited to dig into my box to see what came this month. It's been a couple of months since I've blogged about my Stitch Fixes because time has gotten away from me, but I made it a point to get pictures right away today so I could share.

Wondering what Stitch Fix is? You can read more about it in my post here.

I'm still loving this service. Here's my top list of why I love this service:

1. Element of surprise
2. Clothes is my size are picked out and arrive on my doorstep
3. No need to did through clothes racks at stores
4. Saves time
5. It's fun!

Okay, I have until Saturday to mail back what I don't want to keep. What should I keep and what should I send back?

Here's a look at what I saw when I opened the box. I was excited to see a cool tribal print, polkas and stripes. It looked promising.

Somerville Tribal Print Short Sleeve Top

I love the print on the front and think the mix of the solid fabric on the back adds an interesting touch. This shirt is size XS, but it's still a bit baggy. It could just the the style? So what do you think? Too baggy? Cute and keep?

Jojo Polka Dot Capri Jean

I've requested that all shorts and skirts are knee length (which is sometimes really hard to find!) and I was happy to see these meet my length requirement. But they seem to hit at an odd spot. Thinking that if I keep them I might want to cut off a couple in inches and let them be frayed at the bottom.

Callafia Short-Sleeve Wrap Dress

At first this dress had me reminiscing about wrap dresses that I owned 10+ years ago. Are they coming back in style? Did they never go out of style? What do you think? The fabric is super soft, so that's a point on the positive side. 

Downing Striped Knit Shirt

Okay, this is is cute and fine. I could probably find something similar at Old Navy. Fits well and is soft. Love that. I'm on the fence on this one.

Daisy Embroidered Hem Fit and Flare Skirt

This was a favorite when I pulled it out of the box because of the cool design along the hem of this skirt. Plus it's knee length. I would pair the skirt with a different shirt if I keep it. Stitch Fix suggests pairing it with a grey tee here and that could be the perfect look for a casual day. 

There you have it. My 5 items from my April Stitch Fix box. What do you think? Keep it all? Send it all back? 

Here's a look at my past Stitch Fixes:

Stitch Fix January 2014
Stitch Fix #10
Stitch Fix #9
Stitch Fix #8
Stitch Fix #7
Stitch Fix #6 (forgot to blog about this one!)
Stitch Fix #5
Stitch Fix #4
Stitch Fix #3
Stitch Fix #2
Stitch Fix #1

This is not a sponsored post. I just love Stitch Fix, use my own money to purchase the items and just want to share with you. The links in my post are referral links, so it you click and sign up for your own stitch fix, I will receive a referral credit.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Project Life >>> February 2014 Part 2

Collecting bits and pieces from our family's daily activities and compiling them into my Project Life album continues to be one of my favorite memory keeping activities. This album helps me keep the "must save" papers under control because there is a planned place to put them. Plus, I will never have enough time to create a single layout featuring all of these photos, so it's another way I enjoy telling our family stories.

Doing two weeks per spread has proved to be the best thing for getting me excited about this album again. Producing a spread for each week in 2012 and 2013 just became a little too much for me. It is great to look back on those albums and see so much detail, but simplifying a bit is much better for me. It was either simplify or take a break from PL for a bit and simplifying was definitely the right choice.

Santa Barbara Choir Trip Highlights

Mom's Birthday Brunch /// Our Backyard Pool Digging Begins /// Bike Riding /// Basketball /// Water Gun Fight at the Neighbor's House

Since going to two weeks per spread, there have been more insert pages. Fine with me! In the end, the same highlights from what is going on are recorded and I love that. This spread's inserts include our choir badges from the Santa Barbara trip Audrey and I took, a program from the choir trip, a report Hannah wrote on Egypt and an All About Me poster Hannah made for school. Perfect place to collect all of this!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Go Tigers!

Early in January a friend called and asked if Audrey would want to join a lacrosse team. No one in our family had ever seen a lacrosse game, let alone thought about playing it. But Audrey was really excited about giving it a try, so we signed her up and she started the next day.

Since then she's been practicing every weekday for 2 hours after school. (Except for Thursday because of a choir conflict.) These girls are in really great shape. Seriously. I kind of wish I had to go to a two hour workout everyday. Then again, do I really want to work out for two hours a day?

I love team sports not just for the exercise, but for everything that can be learned about team work, working hard, kindness, respect and dedication.

So now we are three months in and still loving it. I love watching the girls play hard in their games. It's amazing and exciting to watch them progress throughout the season.  Games end in a couple of weeks and I'm sure Audrey will miss the daily practices which is a good sign that she is doing something she loves. That means that I love lacrosse too.

Layout Supplies /// Portobello Road Kit /// New Goods Add-on

Monday, April 14, 2014

Around Here: April 2014

Here's a little peek at a few of things things we are up to around her right now.

Trying to let these daffodils hang on for one more day. A sweet friend dropped them off for me last week.

Making lists and getting grocery shopping for the week done today.

Looking forward to breaking into my Freckled Fawn embellishment kit very soon.

Working on a layout inspired last week by National Siblings Days using the Portobello Road Kit.

Playing at the park with my youngest. Love that she still loves to run and play on the playground.

Restocking our fruit and veggie bowl.

Enjoying our newly rebuilt and freshly stained deck in our backyard.

Watching a lot of lacrosse games this month. Only two games left which is probably good since the weather is really heating up around here. 

Waiting for our backyard projects to be finished. The original finish date was April 15, but now I'm just hoping it's finished by June 1. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

What We Ate - April 11

Hello! I've been thinking about this blog and that I want to mix things up a bit around here. This has mainly been a space where I share my scrapbook layouts and I still plan to do that. But there are so many other things I also love in my life and want to share more about other things too.

One thing that is important to me is weekly meal planning. No plan equals poor food choices, grumpiness and a bit of stress around our place. So I do my best each Monday to plan and shop for our meals for the week.

I try to keep things easy on myself and only plan and buy for four dinners. Of course, we buy things for breakfast and lunch too, but those are pretty much the same every week (English muffins, cereal, apples, bananas, strawberries, sandwich stuff) so the main planning is for our dinners. We get together with our extended family on Sunday and I just usually make one thing for that meal. Friday and Saturday nights are generally no cooking nights and we go out, do takeout or get together with friends. So that leaves planning out Monday - Thursday.

Something I'd like to add here on the blog is a "What We Ate" post each Friday to share what meals we've had during the week. I'm always looking for new dinner ideas and I hope sharing our plans might help you out with your meal planning.

Monday - Sun Dried Tomato and Goat Cheese Ravioli plus a pre-made salad

I picked up both of these things at Trader's Joe's.  Love that place. Their salads are really delicious and are filled with a great variety of items. I seriously couldn't put a salad like these together for less than $4, so I pick them up pretty often. The butternut squash plus quinoa is my favorite.

Okay, I admit, this isn't the fanciest dinner. But it was fast to prepare and almost everyone in our house ate it without complaint. My kids like to drizzle a little olive oil + balsamic vinegar on their ravioli. I prefer a quick sauce that I whip up:

Olive Oil
Can of Diced Tomatoes
Splash of Whipping Cream

Sauté some diced garlic in olive oil for a couple of minutes and then toss in a couple handfuls of spinach and a can of diced tomatoes (juice goes in the pan too) and some pepper to taste. Mix around for a couple of minutes and let the spinach wilt. If you are feeling decadent, pour in a splash of whipping cream. You won't be sorry. 

Tuesday - Dad's Enchilada's

At the request of Ward, this is what we had for dinner on Tuesday. I could be most favorite comfort food meal. They got the name "dad's enchiladas" because they are named after my dad since he made them for our family when we were growing up. He still makes them for us from time to time even now. He didn't do a lot of cooking, but he did make these fabulous enchiladas.

Wednesday - Oatmeal Waffles with Strawberries + Cream

These are my all time favorite waffles! Lots of oats and no flour. They are hearty and delicious. Plus, who doesn't love breakfast for dinner?

Thursday - Meatball Sandwiches + Cantaloupe

No big and fancy recipe for this one, which makes it perfect for a night when you need something you can prep in the morning in 10 minutes and have it ready to go at dinnertime.

Here's what you need:

1 pound extra lean ground beef
1 pound ground sausage
1 jar of your favorite marinara sauce
Cheese (optional)

This made 20 meatballs.

Just mix the ground beef plus the ground sausage together in a bowl. Then roll the meat into golfball sized pieces and put them in a crockpot. No seasonings needed for mixing into the meat because the sauce adds the perfect amount of flavor after simmering with the meat all day. Pour a jar of marinara sauce over the meatballs and turn on the crockpot to low for 8 hours.

We served the meatballs on toasted rolls and added a slice of smoked gouda cheese. Everyone must have liked it because we didn't even have one leftover meatball.

Okay, there's a looks at "What We Ate" this week. What do you think? Do you like see what other people are making for dinner? Do you plan meals out or just take it a night at a time?

Aventure Awaits

There's just something I love about being at the beach. While Audrey and I were in Santa Barbara a couple of months ago, I snapped a couple favorite beach photos. While scrolling through my photos, I decided to pair a couple of them on a layout based on the Scrapbook Circle sketch for April designed by Diana Fisher.

Diana created a cool cut circle cut file to go a long with the sketch this month and I used it to cut out the circles on the background of my page.

It was fun to fill in the circles with bits and pieces from the Bucket List kit.

Ahh...the beach. I'm looking forward to returning for a weekend in June with our family. Until then, I'll just keep soaking up our Arizona sunshine.

Be sure to stop by the Scrapbook Circle blog for more details about playing along with this sketch.


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