Saturday, November 3, 2012

Growing Pumpkins, Inside Pumpkins!

I couldn't tell you where I read this, or got the idea, but somewhere along the way I read about growing pumpkins by filling up a pumpkin with dirt and watching it grow. Being jobless has made me more frugal that I am usually. I waited until the day after Halloween for pumpkins to be dirt cheap before buying some to experiment with. I got these two medium sized pumpkins from Fresh and Easy for a dollar each. Deal! Ramsay was quick to explore these new additions to the balcony. 

I'm all about finding excuses to get pics of Ramsay into my blog.

I started with 2 medium sized pumpkins, I made sure they could stand up well on their own.

Oh all that wonderful gunk!

And Ramsay was right there to check it out.

Leave in all the innards, gunk, seeds, and all.

Pumpkin #2, I decided to cut a square top, went much faster.

Fill with dirt.

And I was done!

Now I'll just water and wait. I'll be sure to take pics and upgrade you all on how my pumpkins are growing. If anyone has done this before and has any suggestions let me know!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Favs for Friday!

Here are my favorites from the week. They are things I pull from Pinterest, other blogs, news articles, or elsewhere. So let's get started!

Favorite DIY: 
I love pallet art! I really need to get off my butt and make something from a pallet. I guess I'm procrastinating because I don't really have the right tools. I should nab my brother for an afternoon to help me cut up a pallet to create this awesome wine rack. I love how rustic this looks on top of being a great way to display your wine.





Favorite Savory Food: 
This Jalapeno Popper Dip recipe from Simply Gourmet was delicious! I made it a couple of weeks ago when we went to a friend's house to watch the Chargers game. It seemed to be a hit, I'd definitely make it again.



Jalapeno Popper Dip

6-8 slices of bacon, diced and cooked crispy
2 8-oz packages of cream cheese, soft
1 cup of mayonnaise
4-6 jalapeno's, chopped and de-seeded.  The seeds will make it fiery hot.
1 cup of cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 cup diced green onion

Topping:

1 cup of crushed crackers ( I used Ritz)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 stick of butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350.

Combine all of the ingredients into a medium bowl.  Stir well.

Transfer to an oven proof dish. The size of the dish depends on how thick the dip is.  The thicker the dip the longer it may need to warm up.  I used this stoneware dish that is round and measures 12 inches across.  My dip is usually about an inch thick.
 

Favorite Sweet Food: 
With the holidays around the corner I just awwwed at how cute these cupcakes were! Must find an excuse to make them. Maybe for NorCal boy's class before they break for the holidays. I pulled this from TheGirlWhoAteEverything.



Favorite Cheers:
I've had my fair share of these drinks, and now I know how to make them! Sooooo good. Best part is usually the shark hanging on the side of the fish bowl. :)


Fish Bowls
2 oz vodka (I used Blue Raspberry by UV)
1 oz coconut rum
1 oz blue curacao
1 oz sour mix
2 oz pineapple juice
3 oz lemon-lime soda
 
Mix, serve over ice and enjoy!



Favorite Clever Idea:
This is a must have for when NorCal boy and I buy our own place. We will definitely be upgrading several outlets to include USB ports. Can be found at Lowes or Home Depot. This post from Apartment Therapy (Love this site!) shows you how to upgrade your outlet to one with a USB port.



Favorite Auntie Idea:
This onesie had me grinning! Must find!



Favorite Nautical:
The perfect wedding right here. This is what I'd want if the NorCal boy and I ever get the crazy idea to tie the knot.




Favorite Holiday:
Even though I don't currently have a job, I'd really like to put together a couple of shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child. What an amazing gift to give to those less fortunate than us.



Favorite Thing from My Wish List:
This is something I'm going to add to my Christmas wish list this year. A travel stub diary. I wish I had this many moons ago, or at least a few flights ago! I think this would be a great gift to get a child on their first flight. I always want to keep items from my traveling, but never really knew what to do with them. Found them at overstock.com, walmart.com, and uncommongoods.com




Favorite Garden Idea:
I got this idea on Pinterest from TownMouse from their visit to the Loire Valley. I love how this keeps the roots all in the pot, and keeps the herbs from taking over any dirt it can reach. I find this idea very clever!




Favorite Home Style:
Definitely a future guest room in our home! Love it all.




Favorite Quote:
This one hits close to home since I feel like I'm traveling through rough waters with my current unemployment. Ahhhhh




Favorite Video:
This is an old one but a good one, always makes me laugh. I wish I would have thought about this when I was at all those Summer camps growing up! Shampoo Prank





Favorite Thing That Made Me Smile:
I'm a sucker for elephants because they are my mom's favorite animal. And....how cute is a baby elephant?! This video showed up on MSN this week and got me all teary eyed. That baby elephant runs so fast back to mama! Elephant Rescue


Hope you all enjoyed my favorites for the week. I look forward to finding new favorites to share with you next week!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Home Style Chicken Noodle Soup

My poor NorCal boy came down with a fever, tummy ache, and chills on Sunday. He slept and wandered back and forth in the apartment most of the day, and didn't sleep well. On Monday I knew I wanted to make him some home style chicken noodle soup. One of my mom's friends has a great recipe and I knew that I wanted to get it from my mom to make for my sick NorCal boy. It turned out great, so just had to share! Here you go:

Boiling the chicken breast, rib attached with skin and bones to create a nice stock. I also added 2 bullion cubes.

I couldn't find the Grandma Noodles that I usually get in the freezer section so I settled for these Buitoni noodles in the refrigerated section. I chopped them up into shorter section so we wouldn't be splashing and slurping.

Large can of Cream of Chicken to be added after we add the noodles.

Chopped carrot, you can add chopped celery too, but neither the NorCal boy or I really like celery.

Add the carrots after the chicken has cooked a little.

Pull out the chicken after it has cooked, I cooked mine about 25 mins. Take the skin and bone off the chicken, you may have to let it cool a little to handle since it'll be very hot.

After pulling out the chicken, add in the noodles to cook the noodles in the broth.

 Add the cream of chicken and stir. This will thicken the soup and give it that home style.

My chicken all de-boned, and pulled into bite size pieces.

Almost there! Smells amazing.

The last thing I did was add in the frozen peas. I was warned by my mom to add them in for just the last couple of minutes or else they'll be mush. Thanks for the tip maman!

NorCal boy added a little pepper and grabbed some crackers. He was a happy camper.

It turned out great! I recommend this recipe!
Brenda's Home Style Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients:
2-3 chicken breast
6 cups of water
bullion cubes (or use chicken stock in place of bullion cubes and water)
1 1/2 cups of chopped up carrots
1 cup frozen peas
1 package of frozen or refrigerated noodles
1 large can of cream of chicken soup
season to taste

Boil 2-3 chicken breast in 6 cups of water with 2 bullion cubes. After 15 mins add chopped carrots. Once chicken has boiled for 25 mins, remove chicken and let cool for a few mins. Remove bones and fat from the chicken, and pull/cut into bite sized pieces. When removing the chicken, add the noodles and cream of chicken. Add cut up chicken back into the soup and add frozen peas. Boil for 10 mins to warm all ingredients and give them a chance to all blend. Then enjoy!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Naan Flat Bread Pizza Lunch

Today I made one of my favorite quick lunches and thought I'd share! It's basically a margarita pizza, but on nann bread. I get this naan bread at Fresh and Easy, which is walking distance to our apt. I got the garlic flavored naan which is my favorite. Ok, so for the easy lunch pizza!

Ingredients all pulled out and ready to make lunch.

Brush one side of the naan with olive oil.

Put the naan oil side down on the grill at low heat to get it a little crispy.

Grill marks, yum! Now brush the non grilled side with olive oil, this time the non grilled side will go down on the grill.

On the side you've already grilled, sprinkle with mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, and thinly sliced tomatoes. Place back on a low heat grill.

While your bread is on the grill, thinly slice the basil. Trick: roll up the basil like a little cigar to slice.

The basil will come apart loosely and you only have to make a few cuts when it's all rolled up.

Check your pizza and pull it off the grill once the cheese is melted.

Sprinkle the grilled pizza with the basil, drizzle with balsamic, and you can add a little salt and pepper to top it off.

Enjoy! Perfect lunch portion and perfectly delicious!
Naan Flat Bread Pizza Lunch

Ingredients:
  • Olive oil 
  • 2 Naan breads
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tomato thinly sliced
  • 5 basil leaves thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinager
  • Pepper and salt to taste
Brush one side of the naan breads with olive oil and place oil side down on a low heat grill. Once lightly toasted, pull off grill and brush olive oil on the non grilled side. On grilled side sprinkle cheeses and tomato. Place back on a low heat grill. Once cheese is melted, sprinkle with basil and balsamic vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy! 

Friday, October 12, 2012

This Week's Friday Favorites

Here are my favorites from the week. They are things I pull from Pinterest, other blogs, news articles, or elsewhere. So let's get started!

Favorite DIY: 
How cool is this bottle cap table? Here at our apartment we have already started collecting the bottle caps to create a table of our own! We'd love to have one for our balcony. Bring your bottle caps on over! We have our vase on top of the fridge available for donations. :)





Favorite Savory Food: 
8 Can Taco Soup from High Heels and Grills! Could this be any easier? I'm a huge fan of dinners I can throw in my crock pot and leave alone until dinner time. I know the NorCal boy will be a fan of this one. The weather is just starting to be perfect for crock pot meals too!



Favorite Sweet Food: 
Check out this Sprinkle Covered Cake, I want one! Must find an excuse to make a sprinkle covered cake....



Favorite Cheers:
I secretly always have wanted to drink my wine from a straw haha! This makes it excusable, a wine slushy, yum! 
Riesling Strawberry Slushy
Ingredients
  • 2 cups hulled strawberries
  • 1 bottle [750ml] dry Riesling
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
Directions
Reserve 1 cup of the Riesling – cover and place in the fridge to chill.
In a food processor, puree strawberries with the remaining wine, lime juice and sugar. Pour the mixture into ice cube trays and freeze until solid. When you’re ready to serve [or drink], puree the ice cubes with the remaining wine in your blender.
Enjoy!



Favorite Clever Idea:
We use our fair share of ice packs around here. Why not a homemade ice pack? 1 part rubbing alcohol, 3 parts water: clever!

Favorite Auntie Idea:
Pimp your kids ride! I'd like to think that my future nephew will be a cool kid, and this auntie will help him be the cool kid on the block. I could totally see myself pimping my nephew's ride.





Favorite Nautical:
This charm bracelet from American Eagle looks like it was made just for me. I need a job because I want to buy this bracelet! It's perfect.



Favorite Holiday:
I've never been a fan of candy corn, but as a decoration they scream fall and Halloween! I think I'll have to do this in one of my vases.



Favorite Thing from My Wish List:
I love tattoos, and I've been wanting to get one. The placement on this one is very dainty and I like that it would be somewhere I can see often. I think I'd have mine say, "la vie est belle."




Favorite Garden Idea:
I tell NorCal boy alllll the time that we will have a chicken coup when we buy a house. He scoffs at the idea, but I know he'll want to make me happy and give in. He will love the fresh eggs in the morning. Now what's better than a cute chicken coop? A chicken coop with a rooftop garden! Win!





Favorite Home Style:
I love how the reclaimed wood on the wall is the focal point, the artwork, and the outdoor element inside. 


Favorite Quote:
So freakin true! I know, this really should change, but I couldn't help but get a kick out of this one.




Favorite Video:
Do you have some time to kill? Go to YouTube and put banned commercial in the search field. There are some awesome commercials that never made it to live TV. This is one of them, and definitely an entertaining one: Get It On




Favorite Thing That Made Me Smile:
My brother Nick heard this story on the radio and shared it with me when he came over this week. Florida Cancer Survivor, 11, With Broken Prosthetic Crosses Finish Line on Back of Marine. This made my heart melt, so great to see truly genuine people still exist!

Hope you all enjoyed my favorites for the week. I look forward to finding new favorites to share with you next week!