It’s Pumpkin Time!

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Hey everyone! If you are in the area (Milwaukee, WI), please note that my dear friend Barb sells pumpkins, hay bales, gourds, corn stalks and other fall related good stuff at her farm.  She is located at the corner of Sunny Slope Rd and College Ave in New Berlin.  There is a variety of pumpkins available at a variety of prices. There is truly something for everyone there!  Check it out if you are in the area.  Let her know you saw the blog post.

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Sprinkled Expressions Melon Mambo Card

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Hello everyone!

I wanted to ink up a stamp set that I haven’t used in a while. I chose Sprinkled Expressions. This fun set has a flower, star, heart, and three sentiments that match.

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I wanted to build up my stash of cards to send for no reason other than to brighten someone’s day – random acts of kindness. We all need that once in a while, and happy mail seems to be a great way to do that.

I stamped my image on the white card stock and sponged some ink around the edge of that piece to help it blend into the front of the card better.  Before I did that, it just looked out of place like a bright white piece that was a little too bold on a card that is bold enough. 🙂

I knew I wanted to use the polka dot grosgrain, but it got lost on the Melon Mambo card stock.  I layered it over a piece of white organza ribbon. I think it looks nice, even if it is a little crooked (as most of my cards are!).

Since the flower in the image has six petals, I decided to do something different for the inside of this card. Now I know the punch doesn’t exactly match the flower on the front, but I think it still looks nice.

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I think this sentiment is so fun!  Let me know if you like the flower inside the card please.  It is different, but sometimes it is good to step outside of our box.

Stampin’ Up! Product:
Stamp Set: Sprinkled Expressions
Card Stock: Melon Mambo
Ink: Melon Mambo, Memento Tuxedo Black
Other: 7/8″ white organza ribbon, Melon Mambo polka dot grosgrain ribbon, Perfect Polka Dots embossing folder, Blossom punch

Non SU! Product:
Papertrey Ink white card stock

Thank you for stopping by!

Cheesy Tomato Alfredo Pasta Bake

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This recipe sounded super yummy when I found it on Pinterest from a website called Lovely Little Kitchen.  Here is the link: http://www.lovelylittlekitchen.com/cheesy-tomato-alfredo-pasta-bake/

This recipe makes a LOT of food.  We are giving a pretty nice portion to a dear friend of ours just to share so it doesn’t go to waste. It is really yummy though, so there is no problem with having leftovers! I didn’t serve any sides with this.

A few notes:
1. I tossed a good half cup of bread crumbs into the garbage. I thought it was too much. That is just my opinion though.
2. I only used 1 pound of ground beef because when we butcher the cow, we get 1 pound packs of ground beef. I did not season the beef with salt and pepper. I don’t think you could tell.
3. I did not have Tuscan seasoning, so I used Savory Spice Shop Italian Herbs instead.
4. I only had plain bread crumbs. I could have added more Italian Herbs, but I just left them plain. It tasted great in my opinion.

https://www.savoryspiceshop.com/spice-blends/italian-herbs.html

Do you have an Aldi nearby? In their bakery area are these cheese sticks. They are cheesy breadsticks. I think they would be AWESOME with this dish. I realize that is a LOT of carbs. It’s just a suggestion. Warm them up a bit. They are SO yummy!

A salad would be nice with this as well.

Cheesy Tomato Alfredo Pasta Bake
Ingredients:
1 1/3 pound ground beef
salt and pepper to taste for seasoning
1 Tablespoon Tuscan seasoning blend (She used McCormick.)
1 pound tube shape pasta (I used penne.)
15 ounce jar Alfredo sauce. (I used Newman’s Own Alfredo.)
1 egg
24 ounce jar spaghetti sauce (I used a can of Hunt’s No Added Sugar.)
16 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/12 cups Italian seasoned Panko bread crumbs
2 Tablespoons butter, melted

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a large baking dish with non-stick spray and set aside. (She used a 10 x 13.75. I used a 9 x 13.)

In a large skillet on high heat, brown ground beef with salt, pepper and Tuscan seasoning. When the beef is cooked through, turn off heat and drain any excess oil.

While the beef is browning, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta just shy of al dente. It will soften a bit more in the oven. Drain.

While the pasta is cooking, mix the Alfredo sauce and egg together in a medium bowl until smooth.

Spoon a small amount of the spaghetti sauce into the bottom of your pan, just enough to cover. Spoon half of the pasta into the dish, and then half of the ground beef. Next layer half of the Alfredo mixture and half of the spaghetti sauce on top of the beef. Sprinkle half of the mozzarella and cheddar over the Alfredo. Repeat each layer with the remaining ingredients.

In a small bowl, mix the bread crumbs with melted butter and stir to coat. Sprinkle the bread crumbs over the last layer of cheese.

Bake for about 30 minutes uncovered or until everything is hot, melty and bubbly.

ENJOY!

Put The Groceries Back!

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Did I catch your attention?

One of my many pet peeves while grocery shopping and one of the biggest is finding frozen or refrigerated groceries sitting on a shelf in a non-refrigerated area. I see it almost every time I go to the grocery store.  (Truly, my biggest pet peeve is children misbehaving in the store, but that is another post for another day.)

Why does it matter to me?  Why do I care?

It bugs me for a couple of reasons.  First, the items cannot generally be put back to sell.  They usually have to be tossed.  No one other than the lazy person that left it behind knows how long it has been sitting out.  Second, it annoys me because this is part of the reason that grocery prices go up.  Store owners cannot just cover spoilage.  It DOES have impact on all of us.

Do not be lazy. Take it back and put it back where you got it or give it to the cashier and tell him/her that you have changed your mind about purchasing it. It happens A LOT, and you will not be the first to say you changed your mind.

Please stop wasting food and just leaving it out on a shelf somewhere.

 

Summer Picnic Card Set

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Hello everyone!

I have a confession to make.  I hoard Designer Series Paper (DSP). I am starting to get over it simply because I have SO much to use up.  I love how these cards turned out, so I made two sets of them.  Yay!  I used up two sheets of DSP, and had 12 fun cards!  Now this is an older set of paper from Stampin’ Up! There are a few more sheets in different patterns in the pack that I need to make cards with.

I like the bold summer colors on this DSP, so I went with dragonflies and butterflies. I know, you are really shocked! 🙂

There really isn’t a lot of stamping on these cards, but that is ok.  They are still nice cards, and sometimes it is nice when they come together quickly. Using the thinlits really does make card making quick and easy and beautiful. I considered using bling on the bodies of the butterflies and dragonflies, but I figured the DSP was busy enough for these cards.

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The Bashful Blue didn’t show up the greatest on the photo. Sorry about that.  You get the idea though. It looks great in person if I do say so myself. 🙂

For the inside of the card, I used the strips of DSP that were left after trimming these six pieces (4 x 5 1/4) out of a 12 x 12 piece.  Not a true One Sheet Wonder here, but it works! I really need to start working on decorating the insides of my cards.  It really adds to the card in my opinion.

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Who doesn’t like to get a happy mail that is bright and cheerful!

Stampin’ Up! Product:
Stamp Set: I spaced on this set. On the other set I used Thinking of You from the very retired set Wreath of Roses .  The greeting inside the card is from Cute Critters.
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, Bashful Blue, Old Olive, Real Red
Card Stock: Bashful Blue, Old Olive, Real Red
Other: Summer Picnic Designer Series Paper, Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, Butterfly thinlits, Decorative Label punch

Non SU! Product:
Neenah 110 lb card stock (available at Office Depot/Max)

Thank you for stopping by!

Holly’s Kielbasa, Rice and Beans

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My dear friend Holly gave me this recipe to try out, and Tim and I loved it!  I asked her if I could share it with you all, and she said yes. It was very yummy!  Give it a try!

It came together very easily, and we didn’t have any sides with it. I did think corn bread would be a nice side, but it is certainly not necessary.  We put it all together in a bowl.

Holly’s Kielbasa, Rice and Beans
Ingredients:
One package Kielbasa (I used Farmland 13 oz.)
One box Zatarain’s Dirty Rice (I grabbed a low sodium. It was very good.)
1 can red beans (kidney beans), drained and rinsed

Slice the kielbasa into coins and brown in a fry pan.
Make the rice according to package directions.
When both are prepared, combine and add your can of red beans.
Mix it all up, serve and ENJOY!

It’s really a simple recipe, but the flavors work so well together. It is a little bit zippy, but it is not at all too spicy (in my opinion!).

Thank you Holly! This will be a regular meal in our house! 🙂

Remembering…

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Today  is Labor Day here in the United States.  We pay tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity and well-being of our country.

It is another holiday that many do not understand the meaning of, but most do have their cookout and celebrate it.  It is generally noted as the end of summer from what I gather.

Enjoy your cookout, but remember what the day is all about.

Also – 9/11 is coming up soon.  We should never forget what happened to our great nation that day.  We should not be lax in our observing things around us. Our nation has changed so much since that terrible day.  May we always reflect on what happened and be vigilant. I won’t get political about it because that is not what this blog is for. Just please remember what happened and do not become complacent.

 

 

Mixed Bunch Triple Time Card

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Here is another Triple Time card.  Isn’t this just a fun layout?  I think the larger stamps work really well for this technique.

In case you need it – here is the link again to the tutorial.  Please note that Operation Write Home NO LONGER EXISTS however they left their tutorials and card layouts on the website to inspire us.  http://operationwritehome.org/tutorial-triple-time-stamping/

This flower set also has a matching punch (Blossom), however they are both retired now from Stampin’ Up! Sorry. 😦

I made a couple of these as birthday cards.  I like the fun summer colors (also retired). I thought about adding glitter to the centers of the flowers, but I thought that might just be too much.  So, I left them alone.

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Stampin’ Up! Product:
Stamp Sets: Mixed Bunch, Teeny Tiny Wishes
Card Stock: Gable Green
Ink: Gable Green, Only Orange, Pixie Pink
Other: Elegant Butterfly punch

Non SU! Product:
Neenah 110lb card stock

I hope you have liked these triple time cards and give one a try if you haven’t before. They are neat!

Thank you for stopping by! 🙂

Chicken and Broccoli Cheesy Casserole (low carb)

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I like recipes that have the veggies right in the dish and not as a side. It’s a nice way to be sure Tim eats his veggies.

This is another Casserole from Molly’s foodie page. I do think it needs a lil more seasoning, so next time I will add some additional seasoning to the chicken.

I used onion powder instead of diced onion. That is just my preference. I could only find 12 ounce bags of broccoli, so that is what I bought. I chose florets so I didn’t end up with a bag of stems.

Chicken and Broccoli Cheesy Casserole
Ingredients
3 cups cubed chicken
16 oz bag frozen broccoli
1 medium onion, diced
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cube chicken bouillon (or 1 teaspoon powder)
1/4 – 1/2 cup water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup sour cream
1 cup ricotta

Directions
Grease a 9×13 casserole pan. Molly used bacon grease for the added flavor. I sprayed mine with Crisco.

Add broccoli, onion, chicken bouillon, water, olive oil, and pepper to a medium fry pan. Cook covered 10 minutes. Stir occasionally.

In a medium bowl, mix the chicken chunks, garlic powder, sour cream and ricotta together. Mix til blended.

After 10 minutes cooking the veggie blend, pour into the bowl with the chicken. Stir until blended.

Add 1/4 cup of the shredded mozzarella cheese to the mix. Stir.

Transfer your mix to the greased pan and spread evenly. Add the remaining mozzarella cheese to the top and place in the oven.

Bake at 350 for 50 – 60 minutes. Once the top layer of cheese is browned a bit, it should be done.

Serve warm and enjoy!

Diet Coke Please

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So many people find it odd that I am overweight but order diet soda when we eat out.  They don’t actually say something to me, but I hear the comments. They may not be directed right at me, but trust me, I have heard it plenty of times. I seriously prefer the flavor of Diet Coke or Diet Dr. Pepper.  Once in a while, if I really need the caffeine, I will have a diet Mt. Dew.  Regular Coke is REALLY too sweet for me.  Most sodas are too sweet for me honestly.  So I guess those that want to judge me for having a bacon cheeseburger, fries, and a Diet Coke can go right ahead.  I am ordering what I like to eat and drink just like you do.  🙂 Who woulda thunk? 🙂