Monday, September 24, 2012

EXTREME Frustration...with some Creamy Taco Soup!!

My original plan had been to get the first new Blog Post up on September 1st. Then Blogger decided to run some updates and yada yada yada...So now, I'm home from vacation and Blogger is up and running again, so I decided to share the recipe that I have cooking in my Crockpot RIGHT NOW!! As we all know, it is officially Fall!! Probabaly one of my FAVE seasons. The leaves start changing colors, it's cool enough for jeans, boots and sweaters, I can start burning my Fall Scentsy scents, AND it means the beginning of SOUP season!! I LOVE soup! I love making it and eating it! I expecially love finding new soup recipes! The recipe I'm going to share with you is a "I was craving some soup last year and didn't want to go to the store, so I threw what I had in the Crockpot" type of recipe! It turned out SUPER fantastic! Captain Hunk and Troop both loved it, as well as the friends we were feeding that night! I LOVE it when that happens. The even better part is you probably have most of these ingredients in your pantry/freezer!! Unfortunately, I don't have pictures today. :(

Creamy Taco Soup

1 lb cooked ground beef
1 20 oz can tomato sauce
1 14.5 oz can Beef Broth
2 15 oz cans Pinto Beans
1 15 oz can Black Beans
1 4 oz can chopped green chiles
1-2 cups frozen sweet corn
1 medium onion chopped
4 oz Cream Cheese
Season Salt
Ground Cumin
Garlic Salt
Chili Powder
Cayenne Pepper

As usual, I don't measure my spices, so just taste as you go until it is to your liking! Add ALL of the ingredients EXCEPT the Cream Cheese. (Refer back to our Preparing for Crockpot cooking tips Here) Let it cook in the Crockpot on low for 4-6 hours. Add the cream cheese 30 mins before serving. Serve with tortillas or bread.

Super easy and Super yummy!!! Promise!!

Stay tuned later this week for a recipe for Cafe Rio/ Costa Vida salads!!


Thursday, February 16, 2012

Sweats, Slippers, No Makeup and Homemade Hot Cocoa!!

Last night I was going over my calendar. Everyday seemed to be full! Photoshoots, Army Ball, Preschool, Dentist, Visiting Teachers, Meetings...I could go on! However, today was COMPLETELY OPEN!! I decided to take advantage of it! I showered and got right back into clean PJ's! It has been a fantastic day. I picked up a litte bit, danced with Troop, edited photos and made bread! I suppose I could have taken a nap...NAW! As I was editing photos I suddenly realized how cold I was!! The downstairs of our house is an ice box. I even had the space heater blowing at my feet! STILL COLD! I decided I needed Hot Cocoa. Troop wanted some too! We are a little picky in this house and prefer our Cocoa mix homemade. We ran out a couple weeks ago and made the mistake of buying a box of it instead of ingredients to make more. It was just NOT the same! As I was making the cocoa mix I had an idea to share it with the rest of you! I got the recipe from my Mom so I quick text her for permission and she agreed! Thanks Mom! This recipe is SUPER easy and only has 5 ingredients! Here they are:

8 Qt Powdered Milk
1 lb Powdered Chocolate Milk Mix
11 oz Powdered Cremora
1 cup Powdered sugar
Salt (just a dash)

Mix it all together in a BIG bowl. I dump everything into my biggest mixxing bowl, put on the lid and shake it!

Here is my recipe for it! I LOVE this book! My Mom made it. It's full of recipes from 5 generations of my Family!

When you finish it, store it in an airtight container! Now, I DO NOT drink coffee. However, I LOVE flavored coffee creamers in my cocoa. I'm usually a hazelnut with a little caramel flavoring kind of girl BUT I recently discovered a Cinnamon Vanilla. It is amazing! There are so many flavors you can choose from too! I prefer the liquid creamers over the powders! Captain Hunks specialty is a scoop of ice cream and a candycane Hershey's kiss!


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Adorable Magnet Boards!

I can't take credit for this one because I actually got the idea from a friend and "Jack" follower! As soon as she showed me, I knew I wanted to make one!! So we had a girls craft day and got it done! It was pretty inexpensive to make too because I had everything I needed except the frame and the metal! What you need to make this:

An old frame
A sheet of metal cut to the size of the opening of the frame
Spray adhesive
Hot glue gun

I got 12x24 sheets of metal at Ace. They do a Military discount so it was the cheapest place for me! :) I had tin cutters so I used them to cut our metal to the sizes we needed. Be safe and wear gloves because the metal gets sharp! First I painted my frame. While it was drying I sprayed the glue (that Elmer's spray glue is amazing stuff!) directly onto my metal and promptly wrapped the fabric around it. I glued down the excess fabric on the back. While that was drying I applied hot glue to my magnets and stuck one to the back of each piece of make up.

When I put it all back together, this is what I had!! Isn't it adorable?! No more messy makeup bag! Since I used hot glue, the magnets easily peel off so you can put them on your new makeup! You can take this idea and use it for pretty much anything! Another friend had an idea to use it for nail polish! It cleans out space in your drawers and gives you a pretty picture to hang on your wall! By the way, my brush holder is thee top piece of a plastic wine glass that I had in my cupbord! I'm thinking about cutting out my first initial with my Cricut and putting it on the cup!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Saving Money on Foaming Hand Soaps!

Like many people I know, I keep a cabinet STOCKED full of my favorite brand and scents of anti bacteria foaming hand soaps. When my favorite store has their big 75% off sale, I go! Sadly though, I missed the last one! :( Suddenly I realized one of our bathroom soaps and our kitchen soap was almost gone and I had already used the last of my stock pile! BUMMER!! But then I remembered "I have the foam pumps!" All it take is about 2 table spoons of any liquid soap and water to create a FULL bottle of foaming soap! Just put the soap in the bottle, add the water and shake! It's that simple! You can use any liquid soap and it will work. Also, I know a lot of people are starting to make their own liquid soaps. It works with those too! So the next time you find yourself with empty foaming soap pumps, or you are looking to save a little money, remember this!! Happy soap making everyone!!


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Food, Food and MORE FOOD!!!

Now that moving, Holidays, and Birthdays are over in this house for awhile, it's time to get back to business!! That means more tips, recipes and crafts! Woo Hoo!! Today's recipe is a YUMMY breakfast recipe. The best part is you just get out of bed and it's ready to eat!! WHAT?! The second best part is it's LOW CALORIE!! Everyone knows how much I LOVE my CrockPots! Well I found an awesome magazine full of healthy, low calorie meals that you can make in the CrockPot!! Since most people's New Years resolution is to lose weight or get in shape, I decided to share the recipes, once I have tried them and decided if they were yummy or not!! We have now tried four of them and so far, they have all been amazing! Even Troop has eaten them with no complaints! So, to kick off the new year I am going to start with a Recipe for French Toast Bread Pudding!! You will probably have most of these ingredients already so maybe you can make it tonight!!

French Toast Bread Pudding

12 oz of challah or sweet bread, cut into 1 inch cubes
4 cups fat free milk
1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
Fat free or sugar free caramel ice cream topping (optional)

1. Line the crock pot with a liner or foil. Place bread cubes in the CrockPot.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt. Pour over bread. Press down lightly with the back of a spoon to moisten bread completely. Cover and chill for 4 hours.
3. Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or until knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Turn off CrockPot. If possible, remove liner from the crockPot. Cool for 30 mins.
4. To serve, transfer french toast to a cutting board and slice it. Or spoon it into serving dishes. Top with caramel topping.

When I made this I did not have any sweet bread so I used extra thick slices of white bread and added 1/2 tsp of cinnamon to my milk mixture!