Monday, April 21, 2014

Our Weekend Recap

What a fabulous Easter weekend our family had!  Facebook was blowing up with Easter pictures yesterday and tonight it's my turn to show off all my pictures!
On Friday night, we went to a Pirate Easter Argh Hunt at church.
Bradley had fun finding eggs in the pool full of packing peanuts.
I'm not quite sure what scared him so much in this pirate room
but the look on his face was priceless!
Practicing the pirate dance!
Making his pirate scope
What a great Pirate Easter Argh Hunt!
Saturday morning breakfast was Applegate Chicken and Maple Sausage links
and biscuits and gravy...yummy!
The boys got haircuts in the morning!
Daddy and Bradley had some puzzle time. 
This kid loves his puzzles and is brilliant at putting them together!
I went with a group of ladies from church to help Nothing But Jesus Street Ministries on Saturday night.  What an awesome experience!
Bradley's Easter Basket
 Bradley's confused expression looking to see what the Easter bunny brought.
Checking out his new dump truck
His first hollow Easter bunny. 
 Mike wanted to carry on the tradition of a hollow bunny.
He wasn't impressed with the Peeps.  They were thrown in the garbage.
He was very excited with new markers!
Easter 2014
I love this picture of my two handsome guys!
Easter egg hunt at Auntie Tina's house on Sunday afternoon
Brad picked up one egg and then went to play with the soccer ball.
Reagan and I re-hid the eggs so the adults could have their own egg hunt.
And they are off with Chuck and Tina fighting over the first egg.
Mike was annoyed that he couldn't find any.
You can't get any sweeter than these two!

Four of the six cousins.
A nice evening for swinging!
And ending the night with chocolate!

Menu Week of April 21 - 25

It's been a busy day.  My 10 year old nephew was hit by a car last night and is in critical condition for the next 36 hours.  Please pray for complete healing in his little body.  I'm hoping to stick to this menu but it may change due to some scheduling arrangements.  We are having dinner out twice this week due to our floors being installed on Wednesday and Thursday.  I won't be able to get into the kitchen to cook.  I haven't picked out what new recipe I'll be making yet but I'll be sure to post it if it's a success!
Egg & Ham Biscuits
Pancakes & Sausage
Cereal x 2
Hot Turkey Sandwiches
Lunch out with a friend
Egg Salad Sandwiches
Dinner Out x 2
Grilled Chicken SaladsNew Recipe Dish!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Painting Easter Eggs with Bradley

So I might not be Mrs. Crafty but Bradley and I can still have fun coloring Easter Eggs.  And I think Bradley did an awesome job and his colored eggs are prettier than anything you'll find on least in my opinion.  Ignore the background mess in the kitchen and the floors.  We are in the middle of renovating our floors due to a bad leak from the back door.  The new floors will go in next week but until then, it's a little rough looking in my house right now. 
He loved putting "sparkles" on the eggs.

He was so careful brushing the paint on.

More "sparkles".

This smile came only after about the 20th time asking him to
 please look at the camera and smile. 

Easter Eggs 2014

Costco, Ingles, CVS, Staples, and Old Tyme Country Store Sales Week of April 13-19

This trip to Costco was primarily to pick up supper items for Growth Group.  We had a cookout on Sunday evening and I grilled hot dogs while everyone else brought sides.  I'm pretty sure everyone in our GG can cook!  We always have the best food.  :) 
My total was $39.61.

My total at Ingles was $41.75 and I saved $30.73.  Most of the snack items I'm putting back for our vacation in May.  It will be here before I know it!

I needed more milk and cheese but I didn't feel like going to Earth Fare (it's only a 20 minute drive) or Happy Cow Creamery (that's more like 45 minutes) so I stopped at The Old Tyme Country Store that is right up the road.  They carry the Happy Cow Products. I know to some of you 20 or 45 minutes would be nice.  But I'm extremely spoiled with a huge variety of stores within one mile from me.   My total was $40.48.  All their items are anywhere from $1-3 higher than going to the Farm but once you take in consideration gas mileage to the Farm, it ended up being about the same price if not saving a little bit. 

This was a fun trip to CVS.  I spent a whopping 12 cents and I saved $37.44 and I received $3.49 back in ECB's.  I used $12 in ECB's on this transaction and $5/$15 CVS coupon along with $8 in manufacturer's coupons.

Staples had these markers Free after Rebate and the Go Fish cards were on clearance.  These will be great items in Bradley's Easter basket.  My total was only $2.64 because I used a $4 Staples ink recycling rebate.  And I'll get $4 back from this purchase once the markers rebate comes in the mail.

One quick stop into Ingles last night to pick up potatoes.  I got off easy this year by just having to bring mashed potatoes to Easter lunch.  The organic potatoes were on clearance for $2.99.  I used a Free coupon for the Purex No Sort and 50 cent coupon on the creamer.  My total was $5.21 and I saved $4.98.
I made one quick stop to the Costco in Spartanburg for sour cream.  A group of ladies from church will be feeding tacos to the homeless on Saturday and my item to bring was sour cream.  I spent $8.98.  I chose the Spartanburg store because I did a quick mystery shop while I was there.  It didn't take me more than 30 minutes and I earned $15 for doing it!
My total grocery bill was $138.79  I'm so happy that I stayed under my $150 weekly budget!  

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls with Vanilla Infused Honey

I'm not quite sure anything smells or tastes better than homemade cinnamon rolls.  I switched up my normal recipe and used vanilla infused honey in the filling instead of sugar.  Oh. My. Gosh.  Can we say sinfully delicious? 
Ingredients for Dough
1 cup and 2 tablespoons warm whole milk
3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 egg and 2 egg whites
1/2 cup organic sugar
4 cups King Arthur bread flour or all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 teaspoons dry active yeast
Directions for Dough
Add the dry yeast to the warm milk and let sit for about 5 minutes or until you can see that  yeast is working.  Add the remaining ingredients and combine well.  I usually just use my hands for combining the dough.  You can also use a bread machine or a mixer with bread paddle attachment if you'd like.  Once dough has been kneaded, let rest in a large bowl, covered for about 2 hours. 
Ingredients for Filling
1/2 stick of salted butter
1-2 tablespoons of cinnamon
Directions for Filling
Roll dough out in a large rectangle on floured countertop.  Spread the butter on and then pour the honey on top and finish spreading evenly.  Sprinkle cinnamon on top.  Roll the dough up and cut into 12-15 rolls and place into greased pans.  Cover and let rise for one hour.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until tops are golden brown.
Ingredients for Icing
1 block of cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cream or half and half
Directions for Icing
Whip all ingredients together with a mixer.  You can add more cream or less cream depending on how you like your consistency.  Spread icing over cinnamon rolls while they are hot.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Pepperoni Monkey Bread Recipe

This recipe makes a great appetizer, a light supper, or used as a side to go along with pizza. 
2 1/4 teaspoons (one packet) active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 teaspoon organic sugar
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup pepperoni slices, cut into small pieces
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon parsley
1 tablespoon oregano
You can do this step in a bread machine or mixing bowl fitted with a dough fixture.  My bread machine died and I didn't feel like pulling out my mixer so I just did this by hand.
In a large bowl combine the yeast and water.  Let sit for a few minutes to make sure your yeast is working.  Add the sugar and salt and stir.  Add the flour and combine until the dough has come together in a large mass.  Place the dough into an oiled bowl
 and cover with saran wrap.  Let rise for 60 minutes. 
After an hour, remove the dough and cut into small 1/2 inch cubes.  Dust the cubes with flour to prevent them from sticking together.  Coat a Bundt pan with butter and flour. 
 Melt the 1/2 cup butter in a medium bowl.  Add the cheese, pepperoni, oregano, and garlic into the butter.  Toss in the cut dough and make sure it all gets coated with the butter mixture.  Start layering the cubes into the Bundt pan.  Let sit for 30 minutes for the
dough to rise a little more.  Bake at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes until the bread and cheese are golden brown. 
While the pepperoni monkey bread is baking, simmer the diced tomatoes, parsley, and oregano on medium low.  Serve with the pepperoni monkey bread.

Monday, April 14, 2014

My Song for the Day - From the Inside Out by Hillsong

 The other day I made a cake and it stuck really BAD to the pan.  I didn't have enough time to make another one so I figured I would decorate it nicely with bright, cheerful icing so no one would ever know the difference.  They wouldn't see underneath the icing anyway.   
How many times have I done something without the right attitude but I didn't care because people would only see the good works and not my attitude?  How many times have I been more consumed with what someone thought about me but never cared that Jesus was only looking at my heart?  How many times have I put on a happy face but inside I was fuming with jealousy or bitterness?
I love this song, From the Inside Out, because it's a beautiful prayer to God asking Him to take my ugliness that escapes within me and make my life glorifying to Him alone.  I don't have to put on a show so my life looks perfect on the outside...God only cares about my inside heart and soul.  If that is in the right place, my outward appearance will shine for Jesus.  And that is what He wants from me.