Ellie and I are getting into the groove of nursing, but she had a severe tongue tie that made it difficult at first. We’ve had to have it clipped twice, because the first time didn’t go far enough. Hopefully this will enable us to have a long and healthy breastfeeding relationship and will prevent any speech difficulties as she gets older.
It might be time to bust out the old Birkenstocks from college, much to Jed’s horror.
Ok, everyone remembers that I’m not a food blogger for several very good reasons, right? Be that as it may, I like to share my favorite recipes with y’all from time to time. Lately we’ve been on a meal planning jaunt, and it has been good to us. We are seriously only going to the grocery store once a week, and staying under our $380 a month food budget. Yay! This is one of our favorite recipes, and I recently made the switch to using Minute Rice Whole Grain Brown Rice in place of white rice. We try to buy chicken when it is on sale, and freeze it in serving sized baggies for later use. We also try to keep veggies and whole grains on hand all the time for easy meal planning. Fresh veggies – check. Whole grains – check. Lean protein – check.
Quick and Easy Chicken and Peppers with Minute Rice
3 Bell Peppers (I prefer to use one red, one yellow, and one orange.)
1 Onion ( I like Vidalias best.)
2 Chicken Breasts (about 13 oz)
2 servings Minute Rice Whole Grain Brown Rice
Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning
Cavender’s All Purpose Greek Seasoning
Olive Oil (about 2 tbsp)
2 cloves minced garlic
Boil your chicken til it hits 165 degrees and then shred it. If you have a Kitchen Aid Mixer, throw your chicken in there and shred it with the paddle in about 30 seconds. Pure magic. I’ll spare you the raw and shredded chicken pics. No one wants to see that.
While the chicken is boiling, chop your onion and peppers. Saute the onion and garlic in 1 tbsp of the olive oil until your onions are well cooked. Then toss the peppers in with the their friends. Liberally sprinkle the Cavender’s and Tony C’s all over the onion/pepper mixture, and stir in the other tbsp of olive oil. Sprinkle on more seasoning for good measure.
Now would be a good time to start the rice. It only takes 10 minutes, so no worries. Follow the directions on the box and you’ll be good to go.
Once the chicken is shredded and the peppers are cooked, toss the shredded chicken in with the peppers and onions. Feel free to sprinkle on more seasoning. Once the Minute Rice is ready, toss it in, too. And you’re done. Woohoo!
I learned a version of this homemade instant oatmeal recipe at MOPS last year, and then shared it again with our group of mamas and it was a big hit. I make it almost every week and it provides about 9 breakfasts. It takes about ten minutes to prepare the whole batch to store. I reuse the same gallon ziplock bag over and over to store the mix in my pantry. Each morning you just scoop out a half cup of mix, add 1 cup of water or milk, and microwave for 90 seconds. I let mine set for a few minutes and then stir and eat. Easy and yummy and quick.
Homemade Instant Oatmeal:
4 cups oats
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup ground flax seed
1/2 cup dried fruit bits
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1 large ziplock bag or other storage container
Measure your ingredients and toss them into a storage container like a gallon ziplock bag or pyrex dish. Stir or toss to combine well. To serve – add 1/2 cup mix to 1 cup milk or water and microwave for 90 seconds (ish). Let set for 2 minutes, stir, and enjoy.
Feel free to add fresh fruit after cooking for more deliciousness. Other fun add ons: pecans, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, cocoa powder, etc.
I’ve had a love affair going with Pinterest for a while now. After using 2 of my all time favorite pins to make my lunch today, I thought I should share them with you. If you aren’t on Pinterest yet, do it now. If you are, come follow my pins here. Leave your Pinterest name in the comments section and I’ll follow you back. If there is a pin that you absolutely love AND have actually used, please leave a link in the comments section as well, so we can all get in on that action. Check out my top five pins that I’ve actually USED successfully below. I’m not using the pictures from the owners’ posts because that feels a bit shady. The first link goes directly to the original post so you can pin from there, and the second link goes to that site’s homepage.
Let’s count ’em down.
#5 Cheap and Easy Balloon Garlands from A Girl and A Boy
I used this little trick for The Bear’s 1st birthday that I still haven’t posted about. It was in May. Hopefully I’ll get around to it before he turns 2. Basically you blow up a bunch of balloons and thread a string through the ends, then hang that string up in a garland like fashion. So cool, so cheap. Bear LOVED it. I loved that it was easy and festive and cheap.
#4 Avocado Chicken Salad from Becoming Betty
I never would have though to add avocado to my chicken salad even though I love both things with my whole heart. Homegirl is a genius. I will say it still tastes fine without the green onion and cilantro, because I had neither of those things on hand when I made it today for lunch.
#3 Giant Photo Prints for Cheap from Sugar Bee Crafts
You take a jpg of a photo to an office store and ask for an engineer print in black and white. They give you a 3×4 foot print of your photo. You pay them $3-6 and feel like a genius, take that sucker home, and mount it on the surface of your choice. I made one of these for my living room and you can see the results here. I love it and it only cost about $5. You can read Sugar Bee Craft’s second effort (mounting on plywood instead of foam board) here. This is such a great, cheap way to get a big impact.
#2 Free Printable Customized Monograms from For Chic’s Sake
Like any good southern girl, I love a monogram. For Chic’s Sake offers free printables you can customize with your colors and initials. I printed one off for our room, one for Bear’s, and will do one for Mini Bear as soon as we decide on a name. Super cute and free, you can’t beat that with a stick.
#1 Use your Kitchen Aid Mixer to Shred Chicken from Simply Healthy Family
This has absolutely changed my life, seriously. I told my mama about it, and it changed her life, too. The post isn’t even about that, it’s about making BBQ chicken sandwiches. I use this all the time. I used it today for lunch while making the aforementioned Avocado Chicken Salad. I just boil my chicken breasts and then toss them in the mixer. Genius.
I would love to hear about your favorite pins. Tell me about them in the comments section or over email.
In my family, our favorite holiday recipe is my great grandmother’s cornbread dressing. It is complicated and delicious and the best thing ever. We usually have it at both Thanksgiving and Christmas, and have to make 2 skillets full to keep us happy. Try it with turkey and gravy or all by itself. It only tastes right if cooked in an iron skillet.
Preheat your oven to 375. We do all the chopping and crumbling in a food processor. Saute the onions and celery in the stick of butter in the iron skillet for about 2 minutes. Mix all the dry ingredients, then add the broth. At this point, check for proper seasoning and adjust as needed. Add the eggs and veggies and mix well. Bake in your oiled heavy iron skillet for 30-45 minutes. This recipe should serve 12.
This stuff is seriously amazing. You will love it and become as addicted as we are. Consider yourself warned.
I am loving all the great posts linked up to Beach Week! Here are some of the great beachy recipes.
I am completely blown away by these key lime cupcakes at Not Just Paper and Glue. I really want to try this recipe.