Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happy things

Hey friends! I haven't posted in awhile, I am sorry about that! Like I told my buddy Di yesterday, I just haven't been doing much that's blogworthy! The kids were off all last week, so there went any time to I've had a couple of colds during February so my energy has been really lacking. But I'm hoping it comes back any minute now! :-)
I HAVE to show you this cute planter and pots I got.
Of course Willow had to get in on the action. The planter is from Hobby Lobby, and it was 40% off. I bought the two planters at Christmas Tree Shops today, for $3.99 each.
I love the rustic planter against the shabby chic-ness of the pots. I'm planning to put these on my porch this spring.

I also got this cute, yummy-smelling candle at Walmart today! Less than five bucks, can't beat that!
Ok, short and sweet today...have a good one!

♥ Jen

Monday, February 13, 2012

Fun with domesticity

It's Monday!  I must say, I don't mind this day of the week. I get the house back in order after the weekend, catch up on laundry and grocery shopping, etc. I like to re-establish some sense of order. Although I did tackle a cleaning project over the weekend...I cleaned out my side of our bedroom closet. I have two big garbage bags full of clothes and shoes to donate. I found a pair of black wool pants that taper at the ankle and go up past my belly button. I think those are just a tad outdated! Other things were in there for many seasons without being worn, so out they go. I did save a few sentimental outfits...the suit I wore to my wedding rehearsal dinner; the suit I wore to Dave's med school graduation; and bridesmaid dresses for my sisters' weddings. But they don't take up too much room. Anyway it's MUCH neater in there!
Today I ran a bunch of errands...Wegman's, HomeGoods, gas, mall, and the library. Since tomorrow is Valentine's Day, I bought a pack of strawberries. The kids and I make chocolate-covered strawberries every year. It's so easy and SO much cheaper than buying them pre-made. Here's the recipe I use:

Chocolate-Covered Strawberries
16 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 Tbsps. vegetable shortening
1 lb. fresh strawberries with leaves
Sprinkles, mini M&Ms, colored sugar, flaked coconut, or other coatings (optional)

Wash and dry strawberries. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and shortening, stirring occasionally until smooth. Holding them by the leaves, dip the strawberries into the chocolate mixture. Rotate berries to make sure they are covered. Let excess chocolate drip off. Spoon coatings of choice over each berry. Place on wax paper-lined cookie sheets. Allow to cool and store in refrigerator.
Last week I bought a few spring items at Christmas Tree Shops. Isn't this bird cloche adorable? Plus it was only $7.99!
Donna, I thought of you when I saw it. You're the one who's inspired me with your beauitful cloches!

I also picked up these decorative bird eggs...they'll go into a spring display on my foyer table.
I'm working on a review for a new Gooseberry Patch cookbook, called "Simple Shortcut Recipes."
On Saturday, I made a great recipe called, "Rainy Day Meatball Stew." I can't wait to share this and other recipes with you...this may be one of my favorite GP cookbooks ever! It is filled with dishes I want to make. So stay tuned for that!

Enjoy your day, and Happy Valentine's Day (a day early)!

♥ Jen

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Hi there

Hey friends! What's going on? Today's Groundhog Day, and Mason and I watched the live coverage in Punxsutawney, PA this morning. Have you seen the movie, Groundhog Day? That is one of our family favorites! Annabelle and I watched it on Tuesday while she was home with a cold...they do the groundhog scene just like in real life.
Anyway, I've been doing some more embroidery, in the cutest kitchen designs. Here's an example:
This is going to be a gift so I don't want to go into detail, but I'll show you the completed project when all is said and done.  Love me some stitching!
I tried out a new-to-me recipe from Gooseberry Patch yesterday, called Jalapeno Chicken Chilli. It was delicious! Here's the recipe from their facebook page:

Jalapeño-Chicken Chili

4 15.8-oz. cans Great Northern beans
2 c. chicken, cooked and cubed
1 onion, chopped
1/2 c. red pepper, diced
1/2 c. green pepper, diced
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 t. ground cumin
1/2 t. dried oregano
3/4 t. salt
1/4 c. water
1/2 t. chicken bouillon granules
1 to 2 c. salsa

Stir together undrained beans and remaining ingredients except salsa; spoon into a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low setting for 8 to 10 hours, or on high setting for 5 hours. Add salsa during last hour. Before serving, stir well to blend. Serves 8.
Tonight I'm making Greek chicken pitas. It's so simple...just marinate a few chicken breasts in Greek marinade; bake and slice. Fill pitas with cucumber yogurt sauce (Mix plain yogurt, dill weed, lemon juice, salt and pepper),  feta cheese, Greek olives, lettuce tomato and the chicken...yum!
While food shopping today, I found the cutest jars of candy sticks...for just $1.99! Had to get a jar.
Hope you have a great day!

♥ Jen