Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Centerpieces

To all of my readers who celebrate Easter, Happy Easter. Unlike every other year, I decided not to get out my Easter decorations. We are making a big move in only 2 months and I did not feel like rummaging through boxes to get to them. 

Yesterday while we were out running errands, my oldest son found the prettiest bouquet of flowers. With those big brown eyes, he looked at me and said "can we at least put these on our table?" All right, how could I say no to that to Dollar Tree we went, WITH our new bouquet of flowers.

I wanted to find something inexpensive just in case we decided to through it away instead of packing it. Not only was this under $8 bucks, it came out super cute and it will be packed into a box and will find a place on the table next Easter.

Easter grass, any color
bunny peeps
jelly beans
glass container
egg decorations

First pour the jellybeans into the glass containers. Fill about 1/4 of the way full.

Next line up your bunny peeps all around the container.

Now fill the middle in with the Easter grass.

Take your egg decorations and stick them into the grass, through the jellybeans until you hit bottom. 

Voila! As you can see, my oldest was quite proud of himself. He did a wonderful job. Looks like he will be making them next year too.

post signature

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Green Tea Brown Rice

I will admit: I had a mini celebration when I found out that green tea has the incredible power to shift your metabolism into high gear. Not only does it aid in weight loss, the benefits of drinking tea can help you live a healthier life. Here is what you are getting out of your cup: green tea can aid in boosting endurance, help reduce the risk of heart attack and certain types of cancers, it helps fight free radicals and also can help in improving bone density.

Not only is green tea beneficial to adults, it can provide children with with some notable health benefits also. It helps by boosting the immune system and supports vital functions of the body such as circulation.

With all the benefits of tea drinking, I wanted to get my whole family on board. My husband and I drink tea pretty regularly but my children, if its not good ol' Southern sweet tea, forget about it. I was able to find some wonderful children's tea at a local tea shop. Not only do they come in yummy flavors, Jumbo Grape is the winner around here, they also have children's versions of "grown-up" teas, like chamomile.  

While I love sneaking any healthy ingredients into my children's food, I wanted to find a way for them to get the benefits of green tea, but drinking it was way out of the question.Then it dawned on me. My plan was a little out there, but I knew there was someway I could sneak it in. 

Green tea brown rice:

2 1/2 cups of water
2 green tea packets
1 cup of brown rice

Add your water to the pan. 

Place your packets into the water and let steep, for about 5 minutes, while you are allowing the water to come to a boil.

Take out the packets.

Once boiling put your rice in the pot and cook like normal. 

post signature

Monday, March 25, 2013

Easter bunny origami tag

Easter bunny origami---free template

This week is spring break. I have been scouring the internet for ideas to help keep them occupied . Anything to avoid the countless hours staring at the TV or playing video games. We might not have the perfect Spring weather yet, but I believe that kids need to be outside, exploring, as much as they can. 

We have had a few rainy days so far and after we turned our living room into a fort, played pirates, baked way to many yummy treats, settled down and watched a family movie...I need more ideas for inside play. 

I came across these beautiful tags and thought that my kids could "help" me with them. Theirs came out, interesting, to say the least but they were adorable and will look beautiful when they are adorned on bags full of Easter goodies for the grandparents.

post signature

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Peep Popcorn

Easter is just around the corner and I don't know about you but it has to be one of my favorite holidays for candy. Walking down the aisle looking at the array of color peeps and the wonderful hint of a yellow bag, stuffed a mile high into an end-cap full of Reese peanut butter eggs. 

As I begin to hoard these precious yummys in my pantry ready for my consumption, I ran across a brilliant idea on the internet, peeps in popcorn. Oh yea, someone had the great idea. Peeps are just marshmallows, sugar and coloring, so why not experiment with them a little.

This would be a great addition for an Easter party, at your Easter dinner, heck it would be good anytime!

  • 2-3 cups popcorn, un-buttered and unsalted
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 5 individual Peeps
  • Place popped popcorn in a bowl.
  • In a small saucepan, melt butter over low to medium heat. Once all of the butter is melted, add Peeps.
  • Stir continuously until all Peeps are melted and mixture is smooth and even in color.
  • Remove from heat and pour hot marshmallow mixture over popcorn. Stir gently with a rubber spoon to ensure all pieces are coated.
  • Spread popcorn on wax paper and allow to cool. Once cooled, place into an airtight container for storage.
That’s it! Easy, right? This is a fun and festive snack for the kids to take into school as well.

post signature

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Easy Chilaquiles in a Mug

Coffee Cup Chilaquiles
Now we move to lunch. If you thought breakfast was easy, you have no idea how yummy lunch can be. No more grabbing for the high calorie, less filling options.  Take a few minutes and try this easy Mexican dish in a mug.

Remember you can always add or take away any ingredients to your mug. I have added black beans, some left over ground turkey, I said whatever you like. 

1 egg
1 tablespoon milk
Ground black pepper
1 tablespoon sharp cheddar cheese
5 tortilla chips, divided
1 tablespoon salsa
Sour cream
Queso fresco
Chopped green onion

1. Beat egg and milk with a fork in a coffee cup, adding salt and pepper to taste. Add cheddar; stir to coat. Break 3 or 4 tortilla chips into small pieces to fit in the cup; stir into the mixture. Add salsa.

2. Microwave on high until done, about 1 minute, 10 seconds. Garnish with remaining tortilla chips, sour cream, queso fresco and green onion.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Coffee Cup Quiche

Coffee Cup Quiche

I am so glad everyone is enjoying the meals in a mug. Yesterday kicked off our breakfast category. Now I know that oatmeal might not be everyone's cup of tea but here is today's breakfast idea, eggs. Not your ordinary run of the mill eggs but a mini quiche. The fun thing about this recipe is that it is completely customizable to your likings. Grab some eggs, your favorite ingredients and lets get cooking.

What you will need

1 egg
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
Ground black pepper
1/4 of a bagel (or similar amount of French bread, etc.)
2 teaspoons cream cheese
1/2 slice prosciutto or ham
Fresh thyme leaves or fresh chopped chives
Dijon mustard
1. Beat egg and milk together with a fork in a coffee cup, adding salt and pepper to taste. Tear bread into dime-size pieces; stir in. Add cream cheese; stir in. Tear or cut prosciutto into small pieces; add to mixture. Sprinkle with thyme.
2. Microwave on high until done, about 1 minute 10 seconds. Garnish with mustard and fresh thyme or chives.
Recipe from St.Louis Post

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Baked Oatmeal in-a-mug

"Baked" Oatmeal In A Mug

I don't know about you but I loathe getting up in the morning. I am definitely not a morning person. It takes all my power to pull myself out of bed at 6 am to get my morning started. I am usually answering emails, drinking coffee, getting breakfast ready for the boys and getting them up and ready to start their morning routine.

 Usually around 9 I am thinking to myself, have I even eaten. Other than my ever present coffee mug, I seem to always forget to eat. Then by the time I remember, I don't feel like making anything, so I grab whatever is close by. 

So that is how my meals-in-a-mug started. Through a few ingredients into a coffee mug, put it in the microwave and within a few minutes, I have a yummy meal. Simple, easy and I cannot complain about not eating properly. 

Here is my take on the champion of breakfast foods, oatmeal!

1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1 tbsp ground flax seed
1 egg
1/3 of a banana, mashed
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 of an apple, chopped
2 tsp honey

Add oats, flax and egg in a mug. Stir well with a fork. Add banana, cinnamon, apple and honey. Stir again until fully combined. Cook in microwave on high for 2-3 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
Stir in a little milk or yogurt or nut-butter if desired.

Recipe adapted from Food and Whine

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Chocolate Cake in a mug

Photo: Because sometimes you just need chocolate cake.

I posted this picture last night on my Instgram and I got a huge number of people asking me how to make this. It has to be the easiest and yummiest quick and easy chocolate cake that takes about 5 minutes from start to finish, can't beat that huh?

The kids and I got a late night craving for something chocolaty but I didn't feel like pulling out all the stops to make cookies or brownies, their first requests. I need something fast because it was 11 pm. We might have a slight chocolate problem!

So here we go, the quickest chocolate cake you will ever make.

You will need:

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons chocolate chips

Melt the butter in a small dish. Add the peanut butter and mix well.
In the mug, mix together the vanilla, egg, and sugar until well combined. Combine the flour, cocoa, salt, and baking powder and add to the mug. Pour in the peanut butter/butter mixture and mix well. Stir in the chocolate chips. Put in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until desired doneness is reached (all microwaves are different so you might have to experiment a little. I only do it for about 1 minute). Then you can top it with whatever your heart desires. We decided to add strawberries, blueberries and hot fudge sauce. Now go indulge!