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Dec 30, 2015

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Skillet Chicken Lasagna (Deconstructed)


I want to take just a quick second and wish you all a Happy New Years Eve!! In my family growing up we always had crab legs for New Years Eve dinner and then sometimes stuff mushrooms or artichokes, or pork, or steak... But we always had crab! What are your New Years Eve traditions??

Here is a new recipe that you can try nor or after the Holidays are over to change things up a bit!!

My husband loves lasagna!! I don't mind it either. However, I was ready for a different variation. I found a crock pot lasagna (haven't tried it yet) but sometimes you just need a different presentation in order to re-love something again.

I was watching The Food Network one day and was able to catch a re-run of The Pioneer Woman and she cooked Skillet Chicken Lasagna and made it look sooooooo easy! So what did I do? I immediately get on the computer and looked up her recipe to see what ingredients we needed. I was super excited and pumped to try it!

The Pioneer Woman loves garlic and onion and we don't. Even cutting back on the garlic and onion it was still too spicy for us. So, the second time around we cut back on a few more of the spices and on the third time around, we feel like we need to omit the red pepper flakes. Here is our version of a less spicy Skillet Chicken Lasagna (Deconstructed).


Ingredients
12 oz Bow Tie Pasta
(or any kind...poor in more than you think)
2 tbsp Olive Oil
2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
1 tbsp Italian Seasoning
Salt
Onion Powder, several dashes
1/2 tbsp pre-minced Garlic
1 cup Chicken Broth
1-2 jars Marinara Sauce (14-16oz)
1/4 tsp Red Pepper Flakes (opt)
1 cup grated Mozzarella* 
1/2 cup Ricotta Cheese*
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese*
Basil, to taste
*start with the listed measurement and add more as desired

Directions
Cook pasta according to the packaging; drain and set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Cut chicken into bite size pieces and season with italian seasoning and salt then add chicken to skillet and cook until golden brown; 2-3 minutes per side. Remove chicken to plate and set aside.

Add onions and garlic to the same skillet and add a little more oil. Cook/stir for 3 min. Add broth and scrape the bottom to loosen the bits. Cook another 2-3 min to let both reduce.

Add marinara and red pepper flakes and bring to a simmer for 10 min.

Turn off heat and add drained pasta, mozzarella, ricotta, parmesan and basil. Add cooked chicken on top. Toss to combine. Add more parmesan, ricotta, mozzarella to desired texture.

Dec 28, 2015

{Family Home Evening} 25 Days of Christ



I had some many ideas of how I wanted to do FHE in the weeks leading up to Christmas but everything that I wanted to would take longer than the 4 Monday evenings or weren't exactly what I wanted or not toddler friendly.

A friend of mine on Facebook posted a link to 25 Days of Christ and said that they have been doing this particular advent for three years and her kids enjoyed it.

Now her kids are all older than Little Man, but I have been reading a few verses in the Book of Mormon to Little Man every day for a year and a half so I figured this should be just fine.

Each day has at least one section of verses to read and at least one video to watch and it takes the 25 days to talk about all of Christ's life! We have thoroughly enjoyed it!! I am looking forward to doing this every year!!

We have an advent calendar that I made (completely separate from this study of Christ) so every day after we do our videos, Little Man gets to pick out an ornament and hang it up! He loves the whole process and it brings joy to my heart to watch him enjoy learning about Christ's life!!


Dec 27, 2015

Ponderize 12


This is one of my favorite scriptures when it comes to Christ's birth! Maybe part of that is because I love the Messiah and whenever I read this scripture I hear the song in my head and can't help but want to shout joyous exclamations of joy!!!

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas!!

Dec 24, 2015

Special Edition {Wednesday Weekly Meal}: Crockpot Cinnamon Rolls

Merry Christmas Eve!!! With Christmas tomorrow morning I had to share this one more awesome recipe that we found.

We love cinnamon rolls! Especially the homemade kind. But sometimes, there just isn't time to make homemade or let's face it, we're just too lazy!

I found this Cinnamon Roll Casserole idea and thought we'd give it a whirl. It was pretty good!! The actual casserole part on the bottom was a little weird at first. It gives you a cinnamon roll/french toast kind of taste. I am a texture person so it wasn't my favorite part, however the rest of the cinnamon rolls were amazing!!

Instead of doing Monkey Bread for Christmas Morning Breakfast we have decided to do cinnamon rolls and instead of adding the 'casserole' part to the crockpot, I'll just leave the cinnamon rolls plain and let them rise and cook!


Ingredients
2 12 oz tubes of Cinnamon Rolls cut into quarters
4 Eggs
1/2 cup Whipping Cream
3 tbsp Maple Syrup
2 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg

Directions
Spray your crockpot with cooking spray.

Place a layer of cinnamon roll pieces to cover the bottom of your slow cooker completely.

Beat eggs, cream, maple syrup, vanilla and spices together.

Pour evenly over the rolls in the crockpot.

Place remaining roll pieces on top and spoon one pack of icing evenly over rolls.

Cover and cook on low for 2.5-3 hours or until the sides are golden and rolls are set.

Drizzle remaining icing over top and serve warm.

Dec 23, 2015

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Monkey Bread

Merry Christmas Everyone!!! We decided to try out something new this year. All growing up, my dad would make Petal Roll for breakfast Christmas morning (and I just realized we haven't blogged about that yet, I'll have to make that happen some time). This year, I don't want to do too much baking, I just want to have a nice relaxed and quiet Christmas so we are going to make Monkey Bread!! What do you guys do for breakfast Christmas morning?!

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

The Hubs was craving Monkey bread. The store that we went to didn't have any! So I jumped on Pinterest, we bought a few things we needed and decided to give it a go!!

ANY FLUTED PAN WILL DO!!

Here is the Monkey Bread Recipe I found on Pinterest. We learned a lot! There are things we need to change around in order for it to work better for us. But hey... this is a learning place right?

We have never made these recipes before!! Honest to goodness! By the time I blog about it or the blog posts go live we might have made it 1-3 times, but all these recipes I'm finding and sharing are ones I've never tried before! So enjoy learning from our mistakes :)


This was the VERY FIRST time we made it! See the ** below to see where we went wrong :)
Ingredients
2 cans Pillsbury Grands Homestyle Biscuits
1/2 cup Sugar
1 cup tightly packed Brown Sugar
1 tbsp ground Cinnamon
1 stick butter, melted

Directions
Preheat oven to 325* and lightly grease your fluted cake pan.

Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a large bag.

Quarter your biscuits using a pizza cutter, knife or scissors.

Place biscuit quarters in bag of cinnamon & sugar and shake to fully coat.

Mix together melted butter and brown sugar then pour over the top of biscuits in the the fluted pan.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.

COOL IN THE PAN for about 10 minutes then flip the pan over onto a serving plate.

Pull apart to serve!

** Here is where I went wrong... I melted the butter on the stove and mixed together the sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon then added it to the melted butter on the stove. I think that was my biggest mistake right there. The mixture was chunky and didn't pour well and so it stayed only on the top of the pan (which is actually the bottom). AND I'm thinking that we need MORE butter so that the brown sugar/butter mixture is more runny. BUT we're looking forward to trying this again! It tasted great, just came out all wrong!!**

***After making this twice we have found that 30-35 minutes isn't long enough for us. The middle of the monkey bread is still very doughy but the outside is crunchy. We have a very old oven in our rental and we're wondering if that has anything to do with it, BUT give it a try and let us know!!***

Dec 21, 2015

{Family Home Evening} Movie Time - Home

Sometimes the best family time is just that.

Time.

Not all Family Nights have to be scheduled in advance and planned out. Sometimes watching a movie as a family is the best thing in the world!


We love this movie (even though we watched it incessantly at first). It always makes us laugh and the movie and meaning are awesome!! 

Don't forget.... Shake your Boov thang!!

We wish you a Merry Christmas!!! Enjoy <3


Photo Credit: Google Images

Dec 20, 2015

Ponderize 11


(Formated to fit an iPhone5C)
As always, feel free to right click and download to put on your phone to help you Ponderize!!

Dec 16, 2015

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Crock Pot Honey Orange Glazed Ham

Recipe #2 for the day!!! I wanted to share both The Mexican Wedding Cookie Recipe and this one because both are great for this time of the year! AND now you have something to consider for your Christmas Eve or Christmas Day dinner!! You should also check out my Twice Baked Potato Casserole recipe too!!

Back in December of 2011 we made an amazing Honey Orange Glazed Ham for our Christmas dinner! Unfortunately we haven't made it since. It's not that we didn't like it, it's just that it seemed to take forever to make. So with my crock pot kick I've got going on, I figured out how to translate the recipe to the crock pot!!!

There isn't much to it. In all the crock pot ham recipes that I was looking at on Pinterest, they all said cook for about 4-6 hours on HIGH. Our ham was full cooked before hand so we just placed it inside the crock pot, used the same ingredients for our Honey Orange Glazed Ham and turned the crock pot on.

It tasted delicious and hit the spot! :)


We didn't cut the ham until AFTER the 4 hours on HIGH and then sliced it and let 'cook' for about another 30 minutes while we prepared mashed potatoes and salad.

ENJOY!! :)

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Mexican Wedding Cookies

Instead of a meal... how about a dessert for a change? Do you bake goodies and gift them to friends and neighbors? You should make some of these!!

I was craving my mother-in-law's Mexican Wedding cookies the other night so I decided to make them!! I think I over cooked them and I think I need to invest in a sifter. But they still tasted pretty good.

Have you ever noticed that when you are craving something it doesn't taste the way you remember? I swear that things always taste better when you aren't the one cooking or baking!


Ingredients
1 cup Butter
1/2 cup Powdered Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
2 cups sifted Flour
1/2 cup chipped Nuts (optional)

Directions
Cream Sugar and butter together.

Add vanilla, flour and nuts (opt).

Mix well then roll into 1 inch balls and chill for 1 hour.

Bake on ungreased cookie sheet for 20 minutes at 350*.

Roll in additional powdered sugar while warm.

Let cook... Enjoy!!

(**I do not have a sifter... so I did not sift my flour**)

Dec 14, 2015

Ponderize 10




{Family Home Evening} Cooking Lessons with Friends

We had some friends over for dinner a few weeks ago after church and we had a such a great time that they said "our house next week". So we went over to their house the following Sunday for dinner!!

While they have been to our house for dinner we have tried two new recipes on them. One will be posted soon and the other was our CrockPot Sloppy Joe dinner. So during our post dinner chatting we got talking about food and well, we decided to have an FHE together and turn it into a double cooking lesson!

We made Breakfast Berry Crepes & Apple Pie!!


I was living so much in the moment and enjoying the conversation and the cooking/baking that I only took one picture! Here is our before picture with everything laid out and ready to go. But seriously, it was a great Family Night! I would totally love to do more like this one!!




Dec 9, 2015

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Broccoli Cheese & Potato Soup

This is a special post! Why? Because we just made this recipe this past Sunday. I typically try one or two new recipes a week and schedule my posts in advance... but this time I couldn't wait to share this recipe. Now why is this one so important? Because we liked it enough to take it to our church Christmas Party which was last night!!!!

Here is the original Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe that we found and then we made a few minor changes to it. So here you go!!


Ingredients
1 bag Frozen Cut Broccoli (26oz)
1/4 chopped White Onion
1 tbsp Butter
1 can Evaporated Milk (12 oz)
1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup (10.5 oz)
1 can Cream of Celery Soup (10.5 oz)
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup (10.5 oz)
3/4 lb Velveeta Cheese, cubed
1/4 tsp Pepper
1/2 cup Milk
2-3 cups cubed and cook Russet Potatoes


Directions
Spray Crockpot with cook spray.
Saute chopped onion in butter then transfer to a large bowl
Combine sautéed onions with ALL other ingredients BUT the potatoes in the large bowl and stir well.
Transfer ingredients into Crockpot and cover with lid.
Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or LOW for 4-5 hours
With about 45 min to an hour remaining, wash, peel, and cube potatoes and boil them till soft.
Add to soup for about the last 10 minutes.
Enjoy

**While following the original recipe we discovered with about 10 minutes left (we did 2 hrs on high) that not all of the Velveeta chunks were melted. So we stired the soup and added about 1/2 cup of Milk because it looked super thick. Then last minute we decided to add some potatoes to give the soup more bulk. We used about 4 small Russet Potatoes so I'm guessing that was about 2-3 cups.**
**When doubling the recipe... cook 2.5 hrs on LOW with 2 hrs on HIGH**

Dec 7, 2015

{Family Home Evening} I Love To See The Temple

The Temple has always been important to The Hubs and I. We were sealed in the Draper UT Temple back in 2009.


We hold the Temple near and dear to our hearts and the song I Love To See The Temple was rotated with several others when I would sing to Little Man when he was a baby. Of the handful of songs that I sung to him, I Love To See The Temple soon became the only song that he requested at night.

He gets so excited whenever he gets to see a Temple. We have many Temple pictures through out our home and it appears that he has picked his favorite one. Can you guess which Temple is his favorite of the 148 operating Temples world wide?

For our FHE the other night, I decided to read to him some scriptures about the Temple.

I downloaded this Temple Box, Temple PuzzleTemple Mobile and a few images of Temples for Little Man to choose from from Google Images. 



For our opening song we sang I Love To See The Temple.

While The Hubs and Little man glued the Temple Box together I read Doctrine & Covenants 97:15-17.

While The Hubs and Little Man put the Temple Puzzle together I read 2 Nephi 5:16.

While The Hubs and Little Man started putting the Temple Mobile together I read what it says in the Bible Dictionary about Temples. (I can't find a link to reference. If you'd like to know what it says please feel free to leave a comment below.)

After I was finished reading I helped them assemble the mobile.

For dessert (which we hardly ever do) we had fortune cookies that came with dinner and a few swedish fish each (his new favorite candy).

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

One day when we had the sister missionaries over for dinner, one of the sisters let Little Man look at all the Temple pictures she had on her iPad to keep him occupied while we had a discussion. Of the 10 images she had, he fell in love with an image similar to what you see above. The Salt Lake City UT Temple at Christmas. I printed out 4 images, 2 of Draper and 2 of Salt Lake and you can see which one he picked! I love that he has a favorite and he is only 3! :)





Ponderize 9


Well, I did it again. I forgot to get this posted yesterday! I will work on that!!

I'm hoping to have my ponderize scriptures this month be about Christ and His life and the people around him to help me focus more on the real meaning of Christmas. I have thoroughly enjoyed this little scripture as it has helped me remember to keep the spirit of Christmas in my heart and to help my Little Man do the same! 

I hope you had a great first week of December!!

Dec 2, 2015

{Wednesday Weekly Meal} Sloppy Joes

Growing up I liked the idea of Sloppy Joes but I never liked the weird residue the tomato pasted left in my mouth as I was eating. And the other day when we were going through trying to figure out what we can make with all the ground elk that we have in our freezer, The Hubs said that Sloppy Joes sounded really good. So off to Pinterest I went and I found this Sloppy Joe recipe and we really like it!



Now we did change a few things from the original recipe, so below is what we did :)

Ingredients
2 lbs ground Elk
1 spoon canned Minced Garlic
Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Pepper
1/2 cup Water
3 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 tsp Paprika
1 1/2 tsp prepared Yellow Mustard
1 1/2 tbsp Brown Sugar
1 cup Ketchup

Directions
In a large skillet brown your ground meat with a few dashes of onion powder then drain any excess fat.

Place ground meat in crock pot.

In a mixing bowl combine all other ingredients and mix well.

Pour the sauce over the ground meat in the crock pot and stir to evenly coat everything.

Set crock pot to cook on HIGH for 2 hours

Stir the meat before serving!

**We don't care for onion so I just did several dashes of onion powder in the mixing bowl instead of actual onion. Original recipe calls for 1/2 cup finely chopped onion. Also, the original recipe called for 1 1/4 cup Ketchup. Next time I might try 1 1/8 cup because I felt like it needed a little more.**