Monday, March 28, 2011

I'm So Exicted!

I know that title makes you think of the Pointer Sister's song, haha. Well there is a reason why I'm so excited. Last Wednesday I received a message on Etsy from the director the Miss Valley of the Sun Pageant here in Mesa, AZ. What!? They want me to set up a booth and sell my handmade items! So this is where I'll be April 8-9th.

I'm completely overwhelmed. This is my first booth and I want it to be a successful turn out. So I have rummaged through what has already been made and have started making more things to sell. I just hope I sell somethings and not have to bring a lot of it home. But if not I can always post them on my Etsy shop. :)

This will be my new home for the next couple of weeks. ( A corner of my living room has become a hair bow workshop)

I will keep you posted of what happens at the event.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Free Printable

Drum roll please . . . . . I am proud to present to you my very first free printable!! YEA!!! For Family Home Evening on Monday, I taught the lesson on The 13 Articles of Faith. We thought that it was time to teach our son to memorize them so that by the time he graduates from Primary he will know them like the back of his hand. So in order to do this I created a fun way to display them and wanted to share it with you so that you can use it to teach your kids, for those of you who are LDS. ;) So without further ado the First Article of Faith printable. (I am in the process of converting the rest and they will be available soon!) Article_of_Faith_1

*Disclaimer: when I loaded it onto Scribd the original font doesn't appear but you go to download it the pretty font will be shown.*

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Recipe of the Week: Cafe Rio

Well this is more like the meal of the week. Last night I prepared a yummy meal Cafe Rio style. It was a big hit! Everyone loved it and there was even left overs for me to take into work. Score!! I found several recipes for the pork, rice and dressing, which were all the same, and wanted to share them with you so that you can make your own cafe rio meal at home.

Sweet Pork

2 pounds of pork {I used a pork tenderloin}
3 cans Coke (not diet) {I used a 2 liter of coke and calculated using the ounces to cup conversion}
1/4 c. brown sugar
dash garlic salt
1/4 c. water
1 can sliced green chilies
3/4 can enchilada sauce {medium spiciness}
1 c. brown sugar

Put the pork in a heavy duty Ziploc bag to marinade. Add about a can and a half of Coke and about 1/4 c. brown sugar. Marinade for a few hours or overnight.

Drain marinade and put pork, 1/2 can of Coke, water, and garlic salt in Crock Pot on high for about 3-4 hours or until it shreds easily. (I usually cook on low all day long.) Remove pork from Crock Pot and drain any liquid left in the pot. Shred pork.

In a food processor blender, blend 1/2 can Coke, chilies, enchilada sauce, and brown sugar.

Place shredded pork and sauce in Crock Pot and cook on low for 2 hours.

{Since I was at work all day and wouldn't have time to drain and cook for an additional 2 more hours, I added everything all at once and set the crock pot to 8 1/2 hrs. It turned out just fine.}

Cilantro Lime Rice

2 Tbsp. oil
4 c. long grain rice (6 c. water)
1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
juice of 2 limes {I used lime juice from the bottle, which I already had, 1 Tbsp}
2 tsp. crushed garlic

Heat oil in a large skillet. Add rice, cilantro, and garlic. Saute 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water and lime juice and bring to boil. Then reduce heat and simmer until all the liquid is absorbed by the rice (about 20 minutes). You can also use a rice cooker if you have one.

{I used my rice cooker and eliminated the oil}

Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

3 tomatillos, peeled and cut into 1/4's
juice of 1/2 lime {1 Tbsp if using from the bottle}
1/2 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. mayo
1/2 c. sour cream
1 pkg. dry ranch buttermilk dressing {regular ranch dry pack works good too}
1 c. fresh chopped cilantro
6 green onions, with ends
2 cloves crushed garlic {1 tsp if using from the jar of garlic}
3 t. sugar
1 jalapeno, sliced thin

Directions: Mix well in blender. Refrigerate for at least one hour.

Black Beans: I cooked mine in a crock pot all day.

Additional Items

Grated cheese, sour cream, chopped up Romaine lettuce, tortillas and salsa.

There you have it the complete Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Meal. Enjoy!!

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tip of the Week: Grilling

Now that it's starting to get warmer it time to heat up those grills! I found some great tips for grilling. Check them out!

- Grill meat and veggies about 4 inches from heat source and chicken about 6-8 inches away.
- To prevent sticking, brush or spray a light coating of oil on grid.
- If your grill has a top, close it to allow smoke to add it's flavor.
- Sear chicken on the skin side first.

Happy Grilling!!

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Friday, March 4, 2011

Gooey Mint Fudge Brownies

Okay the title itself just sounds to Die For! Tuesday night we usually have dinner with our neighbors. Well this time it was only one family that came over so there was only 5 of us, we ordered pizza and I decided to make some brownies. I didn't have anything on hand so I made my way over to the grocery store. Well come to find out my favorite box of brownie mix, Triple Chocolate Chunk was no longer being stocked. What!? I was totally bummed, so I opted to buy the Ultimate Fudge mix as an alternative. Then the wheels in my head started to turn for a creative way make them extremely yummy. A few steps to my right I saw the Chocolate chips, and found the chocolate chunks bag. Score! Then I remembered that husband wanted mint brownies. So off to the candy aisle I went and found the Andes mint candies, you know the ones that you get at The Olive Garden when you get your tab. You can see where I'm going with this aren't you?

Once I was home I prepared the brownie mix according to the box, I added about half the bag of the chocolate chunks and chopped up a few, more like half the box, of the mints. Then of course baked it at 350 and we had the best gooey chocolatey brownies EVER!!

*Sorry no picture b/c within moments of the pan coming out of the oven they were devoured!*

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Thursday, March 3, 2011


Earlier in February I thought that it would be fun to make tutus for 2 of nieces who happen to share a birthday. No they are not sisters or even cousins. Confused? I'll explain, one niece is my sister's little girl who turned 4 and the other is my husband's sister's little girl who turned 2. Anyways, I thought that I would make them a birthday tutu. At first I didn't know how to go about so I looked online and found several tutorials that helped and once I understood it was easy. Well almost. I think that the most time consuming part of making them is cutting the stips to tie onto the elastic. But the end results were worth it. The girls LOVED them!! The niece that turned 2 called it her pretty dress and didn't want to take it off. haha!

I had showed my co-workers pictures of the tutus and one of them wanted me to make 2 for her dogs for Valentine's Day. Okay? This particular co-worker is not a very girly but she likes to dress up her dogs. Yes they are girls, Mia and Chyna. Cute names for dogs, right? Anyway I posted some pictures below of the tutus that I made.

SIL's girl. This one is actually a pettitutu because I tied the ends with ribbon and tulle.

Sister's girl. This is more a fairy style b/c I tied coordinating ribbon in between the tulle.

This is Chyna! Isn't she cute!?!?!

I am taking orders for tutus if you would like one, I just won't be adding them to my shop, at least not yet. Just send me an email.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Recipe of the Week: Shortbread Cookies

At the beginning of February I made some shortbread cookies for my co-workers to kick off Super Bowl weekend. I wanted to share with you the recipe I used. This makes FABULOUS cookies!!

Shortbread Cookies
* Yields: 3-5 dozen cookies, depending on how thick, and the size of your cookie cutters.

3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Tbsp lemon juice

1. Combine flour, salt, butter, and sugar in a bowl. Mix with your fingers until it forms flaky crumbs and lumps.
2. In a seperate bowl combine the egg, almond extract, vanilla extract, and lemon juice and whisk lighlty. Then mix into other bowl of dry ingredients and continue to mix until it clumps; at first it may seem very dry. Shape into two balls, flatten into disks and let is set for about 10-15 mins.

3. Pre-heat oven to 350°F.

4. Roll out a disk, one at a time, between two sheets of parchment paper (or wax paper), to a 1/8 to 1/4-inch thickness, depending on how thick or thin you would like your cookies to be. **If the rolled-out dough becomes too soft to work with, place it in the freezer for a few minutes to firm up.**

5. Bake at 350°F for 8-12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the cookies, until the edges are just slightly golden brown. Remove from oven. Let cool on a rack for 10 minutes.

I made Thumbprint Shortbread cookies using homemade Strawberry jam.

I just recently made these for the ladies that I visit from church.

Happy baking!!
P.S. I've linked up this recipe at Lil Luna and Sweet as Sugar Cookies

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