Sunday, January 29, 2012

A "Graceful" Day

My sister in law and mother and father in law came up from NC to stay with us Friday night.  Saturday morning we all drove up to Northern VA to meet our newest family member...Grace Elizabeth.  Grace was born on Tuesday the 24th of January.  She is so tiny and has a full head of beautiful hair!  We had such a wonderful day holding her, staring at her and spending time with Grace's Mom and Dad.  Grace is a beauty and is so blessed to have such wonderful, loving parents.  We had a great day of visiting and it was hard to leave!  I brought them a Cinnamon-Streusel Coffeecake that you must try.  The only changes I made was to substitute greek yogurt for the sour cream.  It was delish!

Coffee Cake

Lots of snuggling was done today :)

Their dog, Brin, checking out her new sister with Aunt Elise

I love this picture!

Grace and her love!

Uncle Dan holding his neice

We love Grace!  

Tee tiny feet :)


It was a "Graceful" day!  Looking forward to seeing her again soon and watching her grow.  We love you Gracie!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Do not...

Always good to hear...

Have a great weekend!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Pasta and a delicious Crockpot Stew

I haven't been into blogging lately, but I have still so much enjoyed reading others blogs. :)  Here are a couple recipes that I have made recently.

Baked Buffalo Chicken Pasta from How Sweet It Is.  Yet again, we were not disappointed with her recipe! This dish was soooooooo good.  Will def. be making it again.

I also made a super easy and delicious recipe that I got from my friend, Lynn's blog.  Lynn has a true talent with photography, but she also dabbles in the kitchen from time to time.  She always makes yummy sounding dishes, but when I saw this crock pot dish, I knew I had to make it ASAP.  Nothing beats coming home after a hard day of work to a warm crock pot meal.  Check out the pictures of her Cuban Style Pork and Sweet Potatoes.  Below is the recipe as well with a couple of my slight changes:


  • 1 pound(s) uncooked sweet potato(es), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (I kept the peel on)   
  • 1 pound(s) uncooked lean only pork loin, cut into 1-inch pieces 
  • 14 1/2 oz canned diced tomatoes, with green chiles   
  • 1 clove(s) (medium) garlic clove(s), minced   
  • 1/4 cup(s) unsweetened orange juice (I used reg. OJ)
  • 2 medium uncooked scallion(s), chopped (green parts only)   
  • 1/2 tsp table salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Durkee ground cumin, or other brand, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lime juice   
  • 2 Tbsp cilantro, fresh, chopped
**I added the following extra ingredients:  
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, chopped
  • Large red onion, chopped
  • Chili pepper flakes
  • Brown rice, prepared in rice cooker

  1. Place potatoes, pork, tomatoes, garlic, orange juice, scallions, salt, cumin and pepper in a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker; cover and cook on low setting for 7 hours.
  2. Stir in lime juice and cilantro; cover slow cooker and cook for 5 minutes more. Yields about 1 1/2 cups per serving (including some cooking liquid).

*I have today off and I am so happy about it...I love Monday's off!!!!  I hope everyone has a great week :)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

23.5 Hours

Hello! I have a few yummy recipes to add here, but have had NO time to do it. I will get on that this weekend. :) In the meantime, I found this video that is amazing. You must take time to watch is SO true and well, I could go on and on. Watch it.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy 2012!

Happy New Year, everyone!  Daniel and I aren't huge on going out on New Years, so we enjoyed a nice quiet evening at home in our sweats.  Yeah, we're 30 going on 90, haha. ;)

I wanted to make something special and different for this morning's New Years Day breakfast because we typically eat cereal or homemade waffles on rare occasion (yum!).  I found a recipe for a breakfast casserole and whipped it up last night.  Then, this morning I just had to pop it in the oven and let it bake for an hour.  It was delish!  I paired the casserole with fresh fruit and these delicious Brie and Apple Tarts (found from Pinterest!).  I served our orange juice in wine glasses and we had a fancy little brunch.  It was fun and a great start to the New Year.  (I was getting too into it and cut the napkins into hearts...)

After breakfast we relaxed then took a long walk with the dogs, then sadly put all our Christmas decorations away.  Once this was finished we went to the gym for Body Pump, then to my parents house for a traditional New Years Day meal.  My Mom had ham, greens, black eyed peas and sweet potato biscuits.  For dessert we had rum was another amazing meal and it was a good day.  Nothing like starting off the New Year feeling fresh and without the slightest hangover!!!

Breakfast Casserole:


  • 1 (2 pound) package frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 1 pound pork sausage
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 12 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 2 quart baking dish. Place the hash brown potatoes in the bottom of the baking dish.
  2. Heat a skillet over medium heat and cook and stir the sausage and onion until the sausage is crumbly, evenly browned, and no longer pink; drain. Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, milk, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper, and pour over the potatoes. Layer with half the Cheddar cheese, the sausage mixture, and the remaining Cheddar cheese. Cover with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour. Remove cover; return casserole to the oven and bake until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 10 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Individual Brie and Apple Tarts:
1 box (2 sheets) of puff pastry, thawed
1 green apple
1 Tbsp brown sugar, divided
1 Tbsp butter, divided
1/4 tsp cinnamon, divided
1 medium wedge of brie
1 egg
flour (for rolling)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Unfold 1 sheet of puff pastry onto a lightly floured board and roll it slightly with a floured rolling pin until it's a 10 by 10-inch square. Cut the sheet into quarters with a sharp knife. Place a good-sized slice of brie and 3 or 4 this slices of apple the middle of each of the 4 squares. Sprinkle apples with cinnamon and brown sugar and top with a pat of butter. Brush the border of each pastry with egg wash and fold 2 opposite corners to the center, brushing and overlapping the corners of each pastry so they firmly stick together. Brush the top of the pastries with egg wash. Place the pastries on the prepared sheet pan. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry.

Bake the pastries for about 20 minutes, rotating the pan once during baking, until puffed and brown. Serve warm.

*The hubs and I thankfully have tomorrow more day of vacation, horray!  Happy, Happy New Year to you.   I hope that this year brings you good health, happiness and bountiful blessings.