Thursday, July 25, 2013

A Love of Reading

Sometimes, even if you want to start a new book, you have to start supper instead:)  That is what I did tonight.  Pleasing Potato Pizza and salad was for supper here.  And yes, it was pleasing!! :)

Anyways . . . I LOVE reading!!  I can get lost in a book and stay up way too late just to finish a book.  Sometimes I have to force myself to set it down so I can get some sleep!

Tonight when I was starting supper, I wanted to start reading A Ranger's Trail by Darlene Franklin.  It's the fourth book in a series that I've been reading.  (The series is both Texas Trails and A Morgan Family Series). The books are all outstanding!

The first book I read was actually the second book in the series.  Captive Trail by Susan Page Davis.  The books can be read separate as a novel or all together as a series.  Although I am trying to read the rest in order now:)  Anyways, I was seriously amazed-in love with this book!  It was definitely that good.

Then I went back to the first book, Lone Star Trail by Darlene Franklin.

Then to the third book, Long Trail Home by Vickie McDonough.

And after I finish the book I am now ready to start reading, A Ranger's Trail, I will be ready to read the fifth and sixth books, Cowgirl Trail by Susan Page Davis and End of the Trail by Vickie McDonough.  I am really looking forward to reading the rest of the books in this series.  And I totally recommend that you read the series also!

The book I finished earlier today, Plain Pursuit by Beth Wiseman was also a seriously amazing book!  From reading the back summary thing, I wasn't that excited about it, but I totally got caught up in the book and loved it from beginning to end!  The summary definitely didn't do justice to the book (don't you hate summaries like that?!!??).  It's actually the second book in the Daughters of the Promise Series, and I wish I would've read the first one first, but oh well:) (I wasn't sure if they had to do with the same people or not, but I learned they did!)  And the reason I read this one first was because I had ordered the series from the library and had received this book, but not the first.  I am also looking forward to reading the rest of this series.  If this book is any indication of what I'll be reading, I know I'm going to love it!

I hope everyone else has been reading as many good books as I have lately!!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Glazed Cinnamon Scones

When I was eating these, I was going over and over in my head whether they were good or not.  I finally decided that although they were good, they weren't like the best thing ever:)

Oooops . . . if you make these, make sure you cook them long enough!!  I thought they were done and took them out of the oven, put the glaze on them, and proceeded to take pictures.  Then I went to put one on my plate and found out the inside was still VERY doughy and gooey!!  Fortunately, I was able to put them back in the oven (even though the glaze was already on) and cook them until they were done.  So it turned out okay . . . but still, just make sure you cook food long enough to start with:)

Friday, July 12, 2013

Snickerdoodle Poppers

These were so yummy!!

While they were good with the "cream" pudding in them, I think I actually liked them better without the filling.  I know several of the kids really liked the pudding in them, so I suppose it's personal preference:)

These are made of canned biscuits fried in oil, rolled in cinnamon sugar, and filled with vanilla pudding.

I didn't use the actual biscuits the recipe called for; I just used the kind I had on hand, so I'm sure it would work with most any kind of biscuit.  Also, you don't need NEAR as much cinnamon sugar as it called for . .  not sure how much I actually used though.

While they're probably not something you should be making all the time . . . I still think you should try them:)

The recipe is found here.

Have a wonderful day . . . and eat some wonderful food!! :)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A One Dish Dinner: Italian Chicken, Beans, & Potatoes

Italian Chicken, Beans, & Potatoes

4 chicken breast tenderloins, cut in half
4-5 potatoes, cubed
1 can green beans
1 package dry italian seasoning
1/2 cup butter, melted

Place the chicken in the center of a 9x13" pan.  Put the beans and potatoes on either side of the chicken.  Sprinkle the italian seasoning over everything.  Drizzle/pour the butter over everything.  Cover the pan with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until potatoes are soft.

Yummy!!!  If you are on Pinterest, you may have seen this recipe floating around:)  I did make a couple changes from the original recipe though.  This is a great dinner though . . . it's fairly simple to prepare and of course, it's delicious!! 

Have a wonderful day!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Scones with Devonshire Cream

Yum . . . in a way, they're kind of like a dessert.  For breakfast.  Or supper.  (Or I guess it could be lunch, too!)

We had just picked raspberries, so I decided to try mine with some fresh raspberries.  It was pretty good!

We normally just eat them with jam and the devonshire cream on top of that.  They're good either way!

We had these scones with scrambled eggs.


In a medium bowl combine:
2 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
Cut in with pastry blender:
6 tablespoons butter
Add all at once:
3/4 cup milk
Stir just until mixture leaves the sides of the bowl.  Then knead 8-10 times on lightly floured surface.  Roll out 1/2" thick circle and cut into 8ths.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet in the circle, with a small amount of space between each piece.  Bake at 450 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until light brown.

Devonshire Cream

3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup whipping cream
4 teaspoons powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Beat cream cheese in a small mixer bowl until light and fluffy.  Beat in whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla until mixture is smooth.  Refrigerate, covered, 1 hour before serving with scones.

I would definitely recommend you try these!!  (And if you need to eat gluten free, make some plain scones and make the devonshire cream to put on top:)).

Have an amazing day!!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Breakfast Pizza

This is kind of a recipe that has no real amounts or anything and you can basically put whatever you want on it.  It's simple to make, and quite delicious.  Of course, you don't have to eat it for breakfast, though!! You can always have breakfast for lunch or supper (as we did - we had this for lunch:)).

Breakfast Pizza

Make your favorite pizza crust or buy one.  I used this pizza crust recipe.
Scramble up some eggs and fry up some bacon (or you could do ham, sausage, etc.).  (I think I used 6 eggs for the pizza.)
Sprinkle a bit of cheese on the crust, add the eggs over that, and then the meat.  Finish by adding some more cheese to the top.
Bake using the pizza crust directions for cooking.
And of course, ENJOY!! :)

Friday, July 5, 2013

The Bow Clutch

I started out by making the black and green bow clutch.  And I LOVED how it turned out!!

At the same time I was in the process of getting a birthday present ready for someone and I thought it needed something else to go with it, so I decided to make one of these for her, so I made the brown & tan one above.  I think it turned out pretty cute, too:)

They're not perfect, but I still think they're pretty nice:)  Especially when I haven't done all that many zippers in my lifetime.

This is the inside of the black and green one . . more of the green stripes . . so fun!!

And the inside of the tan and brown one . . . a brown printed fabric.

I now want to try some more of these . . . maybe some different sizes or with a ruffle on the front or something.

The tutorial I used can be found here, if you want to make one yourself:)

And as always, have a wonderful day!!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Sugar Cookie Bars

Yum!!  At first I wasn't sure about these . . . but they're pretty good . . . and they're kind of addicting in a way.  I think after the first time I just didn't have any more so I wouldn't keep eating more:)

Sugar Cookie Bars
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 egg white
1 Tbsp sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 recipe vanilla frosting, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 13″ x 9″ baking dish, set aside. In a mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt, set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy about 3-4 minutes. Stir in egg and egg white. Add sour cream and vanilla and mix until blended. Slowly add dry mixture and stir until well combine. With buttered hands, gently press (so gently almost patting) mixture into buttered baking dish. Bake 16 – 19 minutes until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and edges are lightly golden. Cool completely, then frost and cut into squares.

Vanilla Frosting

1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp half and half
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt
Several drop food coloring (optional)

In a mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, whip together butter and powdered sugar and half and half until fluffy. Stir in vanilla and salt. Add in food optional food coloring and mix until well blended.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Lately . . . What's Been Happening Around Here

A post with a conglomeration of things I've been doing lately - some crafts, some organizing, etc.

I've did a bit of scrapbooking lately.  
One day I just kind of felt like doing it so I took out my supplies and made a few cards.

I also made a scrapbook page of Hunter using a picture I took at school in my black & white film photography class.

We noticed our closet shelf was sitting empty and that it would work perfectly to stick all our boots up there . . . especially since we're not going to be wearing them in the summer anyways!

I got a desk as an early birthday present, and I'm enjoying having it:)  You can read a story about the desk here.  There's also another project I want to do . . . remake a lampshade for my lamp:)  I really like the lamp post thing, but I don't like the lampshade, so I need to get that done sometime.

Speaking of pictures I took at school in my film photography class, I finally decided to hang some of them up so I could actually see them, rather than having them stuck away in a binder:)

And Tara (and Bronwyn & Morgan) FINALLY got a bed . . . it's probably a little more comfortable than sleeping on the floor:)  It does kind of need a new bed set for that size of bed though .. and a bed skirt:)

Have a wonderful day, everyone!!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Campfire Potatoes

Campfire Potatoes.  We've had these a lot over the years, especially in the summer time.  They're delicious (well . . . obviously . . there's BACON in them:)) and fairly simple to make . . . probably especially if you don't have a huge family you're making them for!  We serve these potatoes with BBQ chicken a lot of the time (as we did this time).

Start by cutting up the bacon into small pieces and cooking it up in a frying pan. (Keep all that bacon grease in there!!)

Once the bacon is all cooked up, add potatoes cut up into small cubes, along with a bit of garlic powder and salt, and also season salt.  

Cook and stir as needed over medium heat until potatoes are tender.  Add any more seasoning if the potatoes need it.  You can also cover the frying pan between stirring it.

And finally, enjoy!! 

Have a wonderful day, everyone!!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Cinnamon Roll Bites

These turned out really good!  They were best fresh, but they didn't really taste like a cinnamon roll if that's what you wanted.  Leftovers, they actually tasted like a cinnamon roll as a bite sized piece!  They were good just room temperature, or warmed up for a few seconds in the microwave.

Cinnamon Roll Bites



1 & 1/2 cups hot water
1 Tbsp. active dry yeast
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
3 1/2 - 4 cups flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup {1 stick} salted butter, melted

1 cup powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp. milk
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a small bowl, combine water, yeast and sugar and let sit until frothy.  Add the salt and vegetable oil and mix well.  In a large bowl, mix yeast mixture and about 2 cups of flour.  Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough starts to pull away from sides and is no longer sticky.  Turn out dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic.  Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Let rise for one hour, until doubled in size. {Or if you're doing this the night before, just place it in the refrigerator and go to bed.}

Preheat oven to 375°F. Punch down dough and knead on a floured surface until smooth again; set aside.  In a small bowl, combine sugars and cinnamon.  Place butter in another small bowl.
Rip off small pieces of dough {I used like a quarter size} and roll into a ball.  Dip the ball in the butter and then roll it around in the sugar mixture; place on a greased cookie sheet.  Repeat steps 12 & 13 until you fill your cookie sheet up and then bake for 10-12 minutes.  Do this until all the dough is gone.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine powdered sugar, milk, butter, and vanilla until smooth.  Use a spoon to drizzle your frosting over the cinnamon roll bites.  Serve warm.