Saturday, August 30, 2014

Fantastical Friday on a Saturday: 14 weeks

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How far along are you? 14 weeks [second trimester]
How are you feeling? Bloating and heartburn are starting to go away. I'm getting a little energy back too. Right now, the only things that make me feel pregnant are the very apparent bump and the 3am wake up to go to the bathroom :)
How big is baby? The size of a lemon!
How are you sleeping? I have been sleeping a lot better now. Again, still waking up at 3am, but I fall back asleep pretty quickly.
Food cravings/aversions? SPICY FOOD! I have been wanting all the spicy food. And berries. Still hating chicken and it's so disappointing to me because I love a variety of foods during the week: chicken, beef, pork, tuna, etc. and now I'm not big on one of my favorites :(
Any milestones? Obviously hitting the second trimester is a really big milestone!

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

IPA Loaded Baked Potato Soup

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IPA Loaded Baked Potato Soup | Adding a whole layer of flavor with a little India Pale Ale to a delicious loaded potato soup #recipe #SamuelAdams

I've posted a few potato soups here and there over the last 4 years of blogging...including Crockpot Loaded Baked Potato Soup, Cheddar Baked Potato Soup, Kale Soup, and Pepperjack Potato Soup to name a few. Potato soup is one of my favorite types of soup - it's so filling and they almost always include bacon and cheese. You can never go wrong with bacon and cheese. I've also really started to love the addition of beer in savory dishes. Fortunately, we always seem to have some Sam Adams on hand. Nick LOVES Sam Adams beer. Most packs will come with their Boston Lager and their Latitude 48 IPA. They aren't Nick's most favorite beers of the Sam Adams, so he doesn't mind if I snatch one up and use it for cooking. This soup also contains leeks and carrots which I also adore.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Roasted Red Pepper & Asparagus Quinoa

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Roasted Red Pepper & Asparagus Quinoa | A light but extremely flavorful dish - you can't go wrong with quinoa!

Hello, all!
Don't know if you can see me...but I'm over here on the Quinoa Bandwagon!!

Oh yes, I made that joke :) A really lame one.
Don't mind me over here just giggling about the corny hilariousness.

Roasted Red Pepper & Asparagus Quinoa | A light but extremely flavorful dish - you can't go wrong with quinoa!

Like I said, I am on board with this quinoa craze. It's just one of the most versatile and delicious of grains. It can be in savory or sweet dishes from breakfast to dinner to dessert. So what's not to like about it?

This fabulous recipe comes straight from Jocelyn of Inside BruCrew Life. She is always posting some amazing looking sweets, but she doesn't shy away from posting some incredible main dish/savory recipes too - like this one!

There are few ingredients, but that doesn't mean it isn't flavorful. The little bit in the dish goes a long way. It's perfection - y'all have to try it!


Monday, August 25, 2014

My Very Best Blueberry Coffeecake #secretrecipeclub

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http://secret-recipe-club.blogspot.com/

So unfortunately, the Secret Recipe Club decided to crap out and just stop working for no reason. When I tried to consult the host, they weren't very helpful and everything they were telling me to do, I did...and then it was still down and they would say something new was "wrong". After some discussing with April [the former owner], I felt it was the best decision to make a "free" site and just start over. So SRC is now hosted on Blogger and has a new look...and basically everything had to be done from memory with the help of my lovely hostesses. Be sure to stop by and see it, follow it, etc. HERE.

For those who don't know, Secret Recipe Club is a great little group...well, large group, of food bloggers who are secretly assigned another blog each month. Each member chooses a recipe (or more) from their assigned blog and then on the designated Monday for their group, they post the recipe they made. It's a great way to feature a new blog - really discover a new blog - and help others to find new blogs to follow. It feels good to shine that spotlight on another blogger :)

This month, I was assigned to Susan of The Wimpy Vegetarian. Last month, Susan had my blog, so I was excited when the randomizer paired me with her blog. She made the quinoa & black bean wraps and I love the adaptations she made. I cannot wait to try her version! I love that Susan refers to herself as a "wimpy vegetarian" and I love even more that her husband is a total meat lover who says he has incisors for a reason. Nick is the exact same way when we have meatless nights. It drives him bonkers. I love meat too, but I love to have a variation of foods which typically in a week includes one meatless night. She has an incredible resume of culinary amazingness and is even creating a proposal for a cookbook with a theme of focusing on meals for a mixed family/couple of vegetarians and omnivores.

This month I was very VERY decisive unlike last month. Right now in this stage of pregnancy, I am pretty much not into chicken at all...and certain things just don't sound appetizing even if I give in and make them and they are. I almost went with this Healthy No-Bake Chocolate Fudge..but I'm not supremely into sweets like I was during my second pregnancy.

I am, however, incredibly into berries right now. Especially with yogurt and granola. So when I saw "My Very Best Blueberry Coffeecake" - I was absolutely sold. I can finally drink coffee again and there is nothing more that I love that a great streusel-topped coffeecake with a cup of coffee.


I didn't have apricots, so I did blueberries and raspberries. Everything else stayed pretty similar to Susan's recipe. It was absolutely perfect. The lemon was really nice and came through really well. The berries, of course, were fantastic. The produce down here is just seriously amazing! I love being in the South. Can't wait to make this one again. It was definitely the best!



Thursday, August 21, 2014

Starbucks Copycat Vanilla Bean Frappuccino

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Starbucks Copycat Vanilla Bean Frappuccino | Simple yet incredible, this Starbucks cold treat is fantastic! #Starbucks #copycat

Alright, so I'm not big on Starbucks, but I do love to get their frappuccinos every once in a blue moon when I go to Target. I love all of them, but especially the Vanilla Bean one. I have been wanting to find a good copycat recipe for quite a while and I finally adapted one to suit my tastes and here's what I came up with!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

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{Monday}
Tuna Shell Casserole

{Tuesday}
Basil Pesto Bacon & Chicken Pizza

{Wednesday}
Olive Garden Pasta e Fagoli Copycat

{Thursday}
Roasted Potatoes, Chicken Sausage, & Peppers

Total spent: TBA


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Friday, August 15, 2014

Fantastical Friday: Big News!

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It seems like I've had a lot of big news lately, but this one was a surprise to us and really exciting: we're expecting our third child - due February 27, 2015!! :) It's technically not been kept that big of a secret...Nick and I have never been great with secrets...so I've actually posted a few times referencing me being pregnant on Instagram. I've made two boards on Pinterest too. But for all intents and purposes, this is my official announcement...and since I start new weeks in my pregnancy on Fridays, it only seems fitting to update on Fridays.

From the get-go, even though this is a complete surprise (we thought we were just having 2 and my other two are 6 and 7), I feel more prepared for this one than either of my other two. I got pregnant with my daughter when I was 8 weeks postpartum with my son, so I really had no real mom experience yet. This go-around, I know exactly what products I like/don't like and want/need. I have my plan in mind. I'm not nervous at all for labor/delivery. I'm not nervous about having a newborn and losing sleep. I already know I want to cloth diaper, make my own baby food, exclusively pump, and try to do no binkies. Both of my kiddos were pretty amazing at all the things I was scared/nervous of and that has made me a lot more confident as a mother. They both switched seamlessly from bottle to cup, baby food to big people food, formula/breastmilk to cow's milk, and they only took binkies at sleep time, so getting rid of them was easy. They both "pottytrained" themselves - leaving me with no stress about it and very few accidents to clean up (nighttime accidents happened here and there in the beginning). Needless to say, I'm super antsy and wish it was February already. I have had baby fever for a really long time and love being a mom, so bring on baby #3.

So now for the baby stuff - I'll have to update with a bump picture later today! And yes, there is a bump...yay for baby #3.
Bump pic update!


How far along are you? 12 weeks [first trimester]
How are you feeling? Pretty amazing, really. I had some slight nausea from 4 weeks to about 9. Then it was some major bloating until week 11. Now it's slight bloating and heartburn. Didn't have heartburn with my others. But as far as nausea goes...this is so mild. I have been tired, but I do have a lot going on.
How big is baby? The size of a key lime/plum!
How are you sleeping? For the most part, alright. I do wake up or toss and turn, but a lot of that is allergies (runny nose) and occasional "oh crap! I gotta pee!". Still sleeping on my stomach.
Food cravings/aversions? I've been wanting homemade greasy food and red meat and pot roast and potatoes. I finally have been able to start drinking coffee again last week. Chicken is still "eh" - it all tastes like it's 3 days old and microwaved, even if it's just cooked in a cast iron skillet. Not really sweets-heavy right now. So basically just like with Matthew.
Any milestones? Just the little stuff - like first doctor's appointment (with the same doctor I had up til 36 weeks with Matthew), first ultrasound where I saw the teeny baby bean and heard the heartbeat, and almost being through the first trimester.

So there we go, a big announcement - and you'll see updates here and there. There shouldn't be any change in the food stuff because I am still making and eating a variety of foods. :)

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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Garlic Lovers Pizza

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Ward off all those pesky vampires with this super yummy, super easy Garlic Lovers Pizza #recipe

Like a lot of families, our family has pizza night. Most of the time, it's every other Friday and I try to vary our pizzas up, so that it's always different and we have a variety. It keeps pizza night from getting old.

Nick and I are pretty obsessed with garlic. I mean, it's just sooooo fantastic. I love sauteing up some onions and garlic. It just smells like food is ready to eat. Of course, it's nice to have that with something ;)

The only thing that Nick wished this pizza came with...was some meat. But he says that about everything that is meatless. I thought it was perfect the way it was, but I may make some hot wings to hush him up next time!

Ward off all those pesky vampires with this super yummy, super easy Garlic Lovers Pizza #recipe


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Asian Turkey Meatballs over Easy Thai Noodles

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Asian Turkey Meatballs over Easy Thai Noodles | This #recipe is my jam and it has all the most perfect elements for a crazy good dinner!

Maybe it's maturity or maybe it's the fact that trying new foods has led me to finding new favorite foods, but I am much braver trying new foods. I saw this recipe on Amy's blog (and if you don't follow her, you totally should - she posts the BEST stuff!!) and I honestly had no doubt I wanted to try it. In the past, I always thought it was weird to do peanut butter in savory dishes. But then again, I'm the weirdo that eats peanut butter and green olive sandwiches, so I ought to give something like this a try.

I am so glad that I did. So. So. So. Glad. First off, meatballs are my jam. I'm a whiz at making them now that I've made meatballs so many times and I love different variations. These are just killer. Secondly, any dish that is mostly veggies is also going to be high ranking in favorite dishes of all-time. I'm a veggie-aholic. I'll eat any veggie really. I actually cannot think of a veggie I haven't tried and liked! Thirdly, it's pasta. It might be Ramen (which could definitely be subbed out for rice noodles or even thin spaghetti - cooked in chicken broth), but it's still pasta and it also makes me just love this dish. All of these things were perfection together. And then you add the peanut sauce.

Oh my lanta, that peanut sauce was THE BOMB!!! It was the best thing that could have ever happened to the most perfectly perfect of dishes. Nick and the kids loved this as well. I need to remember to make a double batch when I do it because it does get devoured.
Asian Turkey Meatballs over Easy Thai Noodles | This #recipe is my jam and it has all the most perfect elements for a crazy good dinner!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

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Today is the first day of school for my kiddos - 1st and 2nd graders. *sniffle* They get so big, so fast! A little on the abnormal side for me, I will also be in actual school doing some observations in my 8th grade teacher's classroom as part of my teacher prep program portion of my degree :) And hopefully come September, I may actually be working some days, which will definitely be completely new to me as an adult. I'm hoping to start doing some freezer meals soon - if y'all have any great freezer meals on your blogs or favorites from other bloggers - let me know in the comments!! Have a great week everyone!

{Monday}
Oven Denver Omelet & Sweet Zucchini Pancakes
green bell?, cheddar cheese, milk, buttermilk, zucchini, flaxmeal

{Tuesday}
Nachos Bell Grande
ground beef (2), 2 packets Taco Bell taco seasoning mix, refried beans, salsa con queso, roma tomatoes (2), sour cream, green onions, tortilla chips, aluminum pan

{Wednesday}
Otis Spunkmeyer Banana Nut Muffins // Chicken Boscaiola
bananas // chicken breasts, bacon bits, mushrooms, onion, chicken bouillion?, heavy cream, flat leaf parsley, parmesan cheese, fettuccini

{Thursday}
One Skillet Cheesy Hamburger Pasta
onion, ground beef (1), 2 cans diced tomatoes, 8 oz tomato sauce, shell pasta, cheddar cheese, cherry tomatoes

{Extra}
Soft Oatmeal Molasses Cookies // Homemade Fried Mozzarella Sticks
was supposed to make these two weeks ago, so I have everything on hand - whoops!

Total spent: TBA

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Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Taco Macaroni & Cheese

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Taco Macaroni & Cheese | Easy homemade macaroni and cheese topped with seasoned beef [you could sub turkey] and plenty of taco fixings! #recipe

I knew from the get-go when I saw this recipe that is was going to be fabulous. I love doing Taco Tuesday, but I love to switch it up and not do just plain tacos each week. My kids, like most kids, adore macaroni and cheese. Over the last few years, I've pretty much perfected making homemade mac and cheese. I do grab boxed mac and cheese occasionally, but pouring that powdered cheese into the pasta always makes me feel uber guilty when I know how easily I could make my own.

Taco Macaroni & Cheese | Easy homemade macaroni and cheese topped with seasoned beef [you could sub turkey] and plenty of taco fixings! #recipe

And that is precisely what I did with this recipe. Since I made it for dinner, I also needed a larger helping of pasta and seriously...homemade mac and cheese...super super simple. The taco meat can also be seasoned using homemade seasoning, but I didn't have any pre-made up. This is a great recipe to top with many different favorite taco toppings - pico de gallo, guacamole, black beans, jalapenos, etc. The possibilities are endless. I'm gonna share the way my family ate ours :)


Monday, August 04, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

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Back for another week of menu/meal planning and I am so excited for this week. I love Skyline Chili!! And I'm hoping to actually use up some of my MIL's chicken's eggs this week. We have a crazy amount in the fridge and that's after her boxing some of them up to take to some friends. If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen where we found her Easter Egger had been stockpiling her eggs for about 3 or 4 weeks. There were 25 eggs!! Only 5 of which were bad. And that's in addition to her other 5 ladies laying one each day to every other day...we typically get 3 or 4 each day.

{Monday}
Copycat Panera BBQ Chicken Salad
corn, black beans, lettuce, chicken (1), bbq sauce, tortilla strips

{Tuesday}
Tatortot Tacos
golden rounds, ground beef (2), petite diced tomatoes, taco seasoning packet, cheddar cheese

{Wednesday}
Skyline Chili
ground beef (2), onion (2), 8 oz tomato sauce (2), hot sauce, spaghetti (2), oyster crackers

{Thursday}
Bacon Basil Pesto & Chicken Pizza
pesto, mozzarella cheese, chicken (1), bacon

{Extra}
Caramel Macchiato Milkshake // Oven Denver Omelet // Copycat Otis Spunkmeyer Banana Nut Muffins
caramel macchiato creamer, vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce // milk, onion, green bell pepper // french vanilla cake mix, banana pudding mix, banana extract, walnuts

Total spent: $120.72
This includes the addition of brownie mix, Kashi cereal, mini Chips Ahoy cookies, crispy onions for salads, KK mini Crullers, cappuccino mix, and a coffee mug. I love being in the South and shopping at Kroger!


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