Sunday, July 29, 2012

Easy Peasy Chicken Pot Pie

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When I gave birth to my sweet girl a lot of my close friends brought dinner to our house. My husband's favorite two meals were a home made pizza and chicken pot pie. I think we ate pizza 3 times that week. My hubby loved it so much and was so determined to duplicate it but it didn't work out. Well, when it came to the pot pie it was pretty yummy. Pre baby I always made my pot pie totally from scratch. Ya know, I got the rue going and spent a couple hours in the kitchen.

So since my hubs liked the pot pie so much I asked my friend for the recipe. There were only FOUR ingredients! I could not believe it. I've never gone the rue route again. I could never remember my friends exact words but I could remember the ingredients. I'll tell ya how I make it and I promise it won't disappoint. I made this for dinner tonight. I like to try and make something savory on Sunday.

Easy Peasy Chicken Pot Pie

1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 can of Veg All drained
1 package of pre made pie dough
4 seasoned chicken breast cooked and cubed

Preheat your oven to 425. I use a 9 inch glass pan. Place one of the two pieces of pie dough in the bottom of your pan. Place the dough in the preheated oven for about 5 minutes. You just want to cook it enough so that it's not totally raw. This will help in sure the bottom of your pot pie is crispy not soggy.

While the bottom layer of pie is cooking mix the rest of your ingredients in a bowl. You can use any brand of mixed veggies. I prefer Allen's Veg All because it has potatoes! After the 5 minutes pour your mix of ingredients into the pie pan and top with your other piece of dough. Here is a picture of mine before I added my second piece of dough.

Place your pie in your pre heated oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes. That's all folks!

Let it cool if you can, or just do the chew and blow like me so you don't burn you tongue to bad :)

Here, Layla wants to share a piece with you!


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Strawberry Party First Birthday

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When I thought about party themes it came down between strawberries and rubber duckies. Her rubber ducky was her first favorite toy and strawberries were her first favorite food. I'm not a big fan of "themes". You know like where you go into any store and pick up plates w/characters on them. Then everyone and their mom can have the same thing. I prefer to just go with colors. I did the same thing with her nursery.

So I decided to do a strawberry party and just use pink, red, and green. The only thing that had an actual print of a strawberry were the cupcake wrappers. I just thought they were cute :) My friend Katie took pictures. I told her it should be her side job! I'll walk you through the details of the party.

The first thing guest saw was the wreath on the door. This was the only thing that didn't match the color scheme. I wanted a wreath we could use year after year. Unfortunately, it fell apart by the end of the night. I think the weight of the card didn't have enough support. When you opened the card it sang Celebration and had a little note saying come on in!

Once you walked in there were balloon streamers. These were a lot of fun for the little ones to reach up and pull down as the party went on. We already had a picture of it so whatever made them happy!

I made two banners to hang from the arch thingys. The thought popped in my head when I thought about those happy birthday banners you buy at the store. I took all of our favorite pictures from her first year. I taped the pictures so they were two sided. I punched two holes at the top of each picture. Then I used fishing line to make the banner and hung them from a 3mm hook. It came out super cute if I may say so myself.

I made two separate favor bags. One for toddlers and one for school age kiddos. I cleared off the mantle and placed them on top. I made some mini poms to hang there also.

I wanted the menu to be very toddler friendly and full of Layla's favorites. We served mini corn dogs with strawberries and bananas. We had juice bottles and mini water bottles also. I made Neapolitan cupcakes and a strawberry coconut cake. Ohhh so good!!! Now I want to bake more just writing about it.

I also served Sprite and pizza for the adults. I put food coloring in the Sprite cups ahead of time. I wanted the drinks to match the theme. They came out really cute!
I used ribbon and hot glue to make a highchair banner. Cute little detail that was super easy.

We had a ball pit and balloons all over the floor the kiddos to play.
I also cut out strawberries for the kids to decorate. They could use stickers, bingo dotters, or an ink pad to do their finger prints.

I made a DIY photo booth with Dollar Tree stuff. We had everyone pose for a picture before heading out. There's Layla with Grandma.

Well that's all folks! I hope this makes you feel like you were there :) I'll leave you with pictures of our party girl! You can find my inspiration on my pinterest board.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Happy birthday my sweet Graycie baby

This past Thursday my sweet girl had her first birthday. My husband and I didn't have any birthday traditions from our childhood. It was really important to me that we start some with baby girl. So we decided each year she would have a birthday dinner or lunch.

Well, this year we altered it a little. The plan was to go the the aquarium and have lunch. But, reality set in as the day drew closer. My little one still likes her two naps a day. I knew that she would not be up for driving an hour to get there, taking an hour to browse around, going to lunch, and the hour drive back. Luckily on Wednesday a friend of mine told me about an aquarium that was about half the distance away. It was really nice. It's called Sea Life. If there is one in your area, I highly recommend you take a visit.

So we made a new plan. As soon as she woke up from her first nap we let her eat chicken popper things from Sonic. That was her special birthday lunch. After we finished we would hit the road. That gave us just enough time at the aquarium that she could have nap number 2 on the way home.

She LOVED the aquarium! I gave myself a big pat on the back for thinking of that one. So many people thought it was a waste because she wouldn't remember. But, I'll remember and she enjoyed it in the moment. As soon as we walked in she squealed and starting pointing to the fish.

The pictures aren't the best but they still hold the memory. I used my phone and we had to keep the flash off so we didn't disturb the sea life. She had so much fun! Daddy did a good job of bending down and crawling into all the nook and crannies for the kids.

Once we got close to home we went for her first piece of cake. We stopped at a little cupcakery I've wanted to try. I'm a cupcake fene. There isn't a place close to me that I haven't been too. But, that's a whole nother post of it's own.

Layla and I tried the Chocolate Covered Strawberry and Daddy had the Strawberry Lemonade cupcake. It had to weigh at least a pound in frosting. So our first attempt to have her eat cake was not a success.

Finally, Daddy just took off the icing and broke the cupcake in half. Then she enjoyed her cake. She didn't seem as excited to eat it as she does her beloved peas and strawberries. But, that was fine with Mama!

My sweet friend over at The Lowe Down made this for my sweet girl. I absolutely love it.

Well that's all for now. Later this week we'll have pictures of her strawberry party. We had all of our little baby friends plus her cousins over. My friend Katie took pictures for me. I am super notorious for being in the moment and forgetting about pictures. I am so glad I had her do that!


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Dinner Menu Ideas

I just went to the grocery store the other day but looking in my fridge it's starting to look empty. I have ingredients for two dinners left. It seems like I'm going to the grocery store once a week. I don't know about you guys but I can't just jump up and go shopping. It's a process. I have to make a menu, write down all the ingredients, and then I can go shopping. But I seem to run into the same problems each time. I get foodie block. I start to think of what meals to plan for and after about 3, I'm at a lost. I try asking Mr. Husband if there are any meals he would like. I always, always, always get one of two answers from him. The response is either hot dogs or I don't care babe. This is how and why I end up at the grocery store once a week simply because I can't think of enough meals on the spot.

Finally, a little idea popped into my head. Out of pure frustration today I started writing down EVERY meal I knew how to make really well. Once I started writing I thought it was a brilliant idea. I sorted each meal by the type of main ingredient. Before I knew it there were over 40 meal ideas. I like to throw in making something sweet for dessert a couple of times each month. After I finished listing all the dinner ideas I wrote down a few dessert ideas.

I am so relieved. Now I can totally make one trip to the grocery store each month. I hear this saves money so double bonus. All I have to do is go through the list and pick out about 4 meal ideas for each week. I try to plan for left overs once or twice a week and I take the day off on Saturdays. Any who, I thought I would share my menu ideas with blog world. And... if you stay tuned and keep coming back you'll have the recipes too. :) But for now I'll leave you with two of the dessert recipes. I have these posted on my old blog. You know, the one I locked myself out of. Here are the Cookies and Cream and Banana Split cupcakes recipes. The Banana Split cupcakes are what you see in the picture. Enjoy :)


Friday, July 13, 2012

Chicken, crayons, and what?!?!?!

I thought I should take a little time to discuss how I came up with the title of this blog. I'll go over it in sections.

This is a nod to marriage. I've been with my husband for 10 years and married for 1. I love to cook for him and try out new recipes. My cooking adventures all began with an episode of Cupcake Wars. After watching the show he wanted me to bake cupcakes for him, just the regular old ones. But, hello...after watching that I couldn't just whip out plain old vanilla. So I made pink lemonade and I've never gone back to "vanilla" cooking every since. I hope to share some of my yummy recipes with you guys soon.

I am a teacher and I love it! I've taught 2nd grade for the last five years. I'd gotten to the point of burn out and knew it was time for a change. Not in careers but just to teach something different, in a different place, ya know. So, starting in January of this year I started doing a whole lot of praying. I had to stand on faith. I knew that the kids at my old school needed a teacher like me but I knew I was ready for a little something different. I knew that if I was suppose to be at my current "at risk" school God would leave me there.But, I still had faith I would move and get something new. So much so that I just tore down my whole classroom knowing in my heart one way or the other I wouldn't be in 2nd grade anymore. Boy was I right. At first my old principal moved me to Kinder for the upcoming year. Then, like the first week we were out for the summer I got a call to interview at my dream school! It was for a 4th grade Social Studies teacher. I got the job!! I am excited but super nervous about my new job.

I have the most LOVING and happy baby girl. She is so dang sweet y'all! My sweet girl turns one next week. I still remember her laying across my lap like it was yesterday. Now, she is her own woman. :) She's learned to walk and she is all over the place. I absolutely love every minute of it. Last week she just stopped playing, looked up at me, waved hi, and blew me a kiss with the muah.. sound effect and all. Ahhh... that girl melts my heart. We have a "big" party planned for her. I swore I wouldn't be that person that spends $100's of dollars on a birthday she wouldn't remember. Guilty!!! Although, it does make me feel better that most of the money has went to her outfits. Yes, that's plural! Once again guilty.... But, really I think it's normal for every baby girl to have a birthday outfit and a party day outfit right....

Well, I hope that gives you a little more insight about me and my quirky title. Yes, chicken, crayons, and diapers are all in a day's work (for me anyway) :)


Thursday, July 12, 2012

It's Been A While

Hola, Blogging word!

It's been a good two or three years since I've blogged. So long ago that in fact, I totally lost better yet forgot my log in information for my old blog Days and Nights of Donnamarie This is a total bummer because blogger has beyond changed. I'm having a little trouble figuring out how to add a signature to this new layout. So, if after a few post you don't see one that's because I gave up. Well, toodles for now  more to come.
I totally mean it this time :)