Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My 2013 Family Friendly #Recipes

In 2013 I introduced you all to some of our favorite recipes that we use in our home.  I hope to continue this trend in 2014.  This has led me to more meal planning and cooking in our home which is something we need to continue to do better at.  So I wanted to recap all the family friendly yumminess that I have shared with you in 2013!

Spaghetti Pie Recipe:  This recipe has a special memory attached to it too!
Spaghetti Pie Recipe

Masticholi Pasta Salad Recipe:  This recipe is another family get together favorite in our home!
Masticholi Pasta Salad Recipe

Leek and Yam Chowder Recipe:  This is a fall favorite for our family.  Even the toddler loves it - thinks it is a cheesy soup!
Leek and Yam Chowder Recipe

Meatloaf Cupcakes with Mashed Potato Frosting Recipe:  My parents thought I was crazy when I told them we were having cupcakes for dinner!  Perfect meal for a large group!  So yummy!!  
Meatloaf Cupcakes with Mashed Potato Frosting Recipe

Pink Lemonade Cookie Recipe:  We love lemon in our family.  Add some Strawberry and we are set!  These easy to make and pretty cookies were a hit!
Pink Lemonade Cookie Recipe

Pizza Biscuit Muffin Recipe:  These are one of my favorite "what's for dinner" recipe.  So easy and cheap!  And the Toddler loves them!!  
Pizza Biscuit Muffin Recipe

Frog Eye Salad Recipe:  A Family recipe that I have learned from Jeremy's mom.  While it sounds yucky it is so good!  Perfect side dish for a large party or get together!  Fruit and dessert in one!
Frog Eye Salad Recipe

Crock Pot Cheese and Veggies Chicken Pasta Recipe:  Who doesn't love a one dish meal from the crock pot?  This is a working moms perfect dinner!  Balanced meal for the whole family.  
Crock Pot Cheese and Veggies Chicken Pasta Recipe

Cranberry Ice Recipe:  Another family tradition handing down to me by my mother in law.  Cranberry Ice is a staple at Jeremy's family Thanksgiving Dinner.  We have continued that tradition.  
Cranberry Ice Recipe

Pecan Snowball Cookie Recipe:  Need a great cookie for your next cookie exchange?  These are perfect.  Not too sweet or rich.  Perfect cookie to go with your morning tea or coffee too.  YUM!!
Pecan Snowball Cookie Recipe:

Fall Apple Salad Recipe:  My mom taught me this easy fruit salad that we use at our dinner table a lot.  This is a perfect side dish to any meal.  Perfect for when it is apple season too!
Fall Apple Salad Recipe

Banana Bread Muffin Recipe (weight watchers friendly):  When on Weight Watchers I always crave baked goods.  I needed something that was yummy and easy to create for my cravings.  These Muffins are perfect for that.  
Banana Bread Muffin Recipe Weight Watchers

Strawberry Lemonade Poke Cake Recipe:  Need a dessert recipe for summertime?  This one is perfect.  Nice and light and fluffy and very easy to make!  I was a hit at our BBQ with this dish!  Yummy!  I cannot wait to make it again!
Strawberry Lemonade Poke Cake Recipe:

Broccoli Salad Recipe:  Another side dish that is easy to make and gives your meal some veggies and protein.  Great for a family dinner or even a luncheon. 
Broccoli Salad Recipe

Crock Pot Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe:  Who doesn't love soup?  How about Broccoli Cheddar Soup?  Oh and make it easily in your crock pot?  Sign me up!  This was a delicious family meal on a cold fall Colorado evening.   So good and so easy!
Crock Pot Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe

Cheeseburger Casserole Recipe: This was my most popular recipe in 2013 both on my blog and at my dinner table.  When I first saw this recipe I knew I had to try it and boy I am glad we did!  This is a meal that freezes well too!
Cheeseburger Casserole Recipe

 Chicken Tatar Tot Casserole Bake Recipe:  It isn't surprise I love one dish meals.  This is a great one and a hit with both of my kiddos.  Tatar Tots, Cheese, corn and chicken...YUM!
Chicken Tatar Tot Casserole Bake Recipe

Cornbread Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwich Recipe:  We love Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in our house...all of this.  I like making this recipe to add a little twist to a traditional sandwich.  The cornbread is so good!  This meal is a meal that is cheap yet filling!  
Cornbread Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwich Recipe

So there they are!  All of the recipes that I shared with you in 2013.  I hope that you can use some of them in your cooking in the next year!  I cannot wait to share some more great recipes with you in 2014!  

Happy eating!!


Our Year in Review: 2013

In with the new and out with the old!  
Time to recap what 2013 was like for our family.  It was a busy, eventful, hard, joyful and exciting year.  

2013 in Review

January 2013
January started off a little scary with a big decision for Jeremy's health.  We were hopeful that this would be end of our battles with Ulcerative Colitis.  I turned the big 3-0!  Hard to believe...I don't feel THAT old!  We started the transition to the crib for Teagan.  What a crazy month!

February 2013
We went out with Jude to a special show!  Phineas and Ferb Live!  Jude loved it!  My 2013 Goals - some of them I actually kept!  Our question to you...To Pierce or Not to Pierce?  We decided not to still.  We had a Dirty 30 party for me.  We thought we had twins - 3 years apart! ;)

March 2013
Teagan got her first taste of food - not impressed at all!  We had a visit with the Easter Bunny.  Found a really yummy new recipe that was hit!  Cheeseburger Casserole Recipe is a must try!  I became a #SoccerMom.  So many firsts in March!

April 2013
We had a surprise on Easter morning...an Easter Tooth appeared!  I went on a Mom Only vacation to visit my best friend in Arkansas.  We decided that we needed BFF Tattoos...so we did this.  We said a very sad goodbye to our first Fur-Baby, Pun-kin.  We miss him so much.   Teagan is 1/2 a year old!

May 2013
My Mother's Day present this year was a photo shoot with my 2 kiddos. We were Blessed by friends and family with a great event called Baking to Bless.  We had a family day out at Dinosaur Ridge for Grandpa's birthday.  Oh and Teagan is 7 months old already!!

June 2013
Jude and Daddy entered a Fishing Derby!  Jude caught a fish!  So we are co-sleeping...never wanted to do that!!  Family Favorite Recipe is shared - have you tried Frog Eye Salad yet?  We had a Baseball Party for a special little boy turning 3!  Happy Birthday Jude!

July 2013
We entered the world of DSLR - we are grown ups!  3 year stats for Jude, BIG growing and healthy boy!  Our trip to Arizona - 4th of July and Teagan's first airplane ride!  We decided to take a trip to the cabin as a family.  So relaxing and beautiful...well maybe not THAT relaxing with 2 kids!  Our decision for a Montessori Preschool for Jude.

August 2013
Jeremy had a birthday!  Old man!  We asked for prayers for my brother and his wife.  We celebrated a HUGE milestone - married for 10 years!  We had a mini vacation to a great Bed and Breakfast in Evergreen Colorado!  I told you all that we were ONLY having 2 kids...yup ONLY!  Jude had his first day of school and got to go to his first movie in the theater too!

September 2013
We had a great play date at a really fun Firefighters Park in Arvada Colorado.  We had A Day Out with Thomas at the Colorado Railroad Museum.  Hey maybe we are Potty Trained?  Family night out at the Colorado Rockies game - Boston Red Sox came to town!

October 2013
Jude had his very first field trip with his preschool class - we went to Miller Farms for Harvest!  It's official we have a WALKER - at only 11 months old!  Teagan is our little Cowgirl too.  A family day out at Anderson Farms - great pumpkin patch fun!  We celebrated our little Cupcake turning ONE with a Cupcake Birthday Party.  Happy Birthday Teagan!  An update on Jeremy and his wound that just won't heal.  Halloween with the Toy Story Family!

November 2013
I reminded you all that I am adopted.  I started a second job to help with our financial situation.  Jude finds the Terrible THREES!  Help us!  We took Teagan to see Sesame Street Live for her birthday!  Her favorite is Elmo!

December 2013
We adopted an Elf on the Shelf named Peppermint! Need some Elf on the Shelf Ideas?  Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4.  Our 2013 Family Pictures!  They turned out great!  Jeremy has another surgery, hopefully the last surgery!  We had a visit with Santa, mommy had to sit with Teagan because she was not thrilled with Santa!  Jude has his first Christmas Program at school, he sang so nicely!  We celebrated a lovely Christmas together.  

Phew!  What a year!  Filled with so many memories!  We hope that your 2013 was filled to the brim with love, laughter and memories too!  Bring on 2014!!

Happy New Years Eve!!


Monday, December 30, 2013

Montessori Reflections for December #Montessori #Preschool

November Montessori Reflections:

December is coming to an end.  Another month of Montessori Learning for Jude in the books!  December was full of fun Christmas experiences.  

Jude had his first Christmas program at the church attached to the Montessori Preschool.  He was so excited to sing his songs he learned.  I was a lot of fun to watch him learn these songs in the last month or so. 

On top of the preparations for the Christmas Program, I was focused on the Christmas Party for the classroom.  Hi I am the Room Mom!  ;)  

The party was a lot of fun and a lot of work but over all I know the children had a lot of fun celebrating with one another.  
We had a book exchange instead of gifts, these kids were really excited!  Also, my son is the one with the CHEESE face!  ;)  This is his class.  8 boys and 1 girl!  I have been told that there might be another little girl joining the class after the new year!  The class keeps growing which is great!

Jude doing a craft.  Well okay he is coloring a reindeer BLUE...all BLUE!  ;)

We decorated GIANT gingerbread cookies, all of the kiddos were so excited to do to this.  

December brought a lot of great skills to Jude as well.  He is really excelling with his pinching life skills and cleaning up too!  

I am excited to see what the New Year brings for him.  


Saturday, December 28, 2013

Elf on the Shelf: Week 4

Our time with Peppermint has been fun.  Here is the last couple of days of his shenanigans.  Until next year Mr. Peppermint!  

Doing a little fishing. 

Oh no!  Trapped!!  GO BRONCOS!

Oooo!  A treat for for Jude and Teagan! 

Silly guy found some great art to admire and sit on.

For his last visit he brought Jude and Teagan new Christmas PJs and found the Santa Plate and Mug just in time for Christmas Eve!! 

How did your Elf on the Shelf go for 2013?  I am already excited for next year!  I think we will be added a girl Elf just for Teagan too!  We will see!

Pin these ideas for 2014!


Friday, December 27, 2013

My Everything...

This picture shows you my everything.  
Our Family of Four on Christmas Eve at our Church.  
All dressed up and happy!  

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!!


Keeping it Cool with Norton and Mobile Security #SmartSecurity

I am sure you have a virus protection on your computer or laptop correct?  But have you considered smartphone and WiFi security?   Norton is known for their amazing virus protection you can buy for your computers but now it is time to jump to the reality.  You use your smartphone for more now.  Which means you expose yourself to more as well.  Time to seriously think about mobile security...NOW!
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I am an iPhone addict...there I admitted it.  I have to have my phone.  I like being connected.  I like being able to access my email, Facebook and blog with a click of a button while I sit at the doctor's office or stand in line at Starbucks.  It is life.  I also like having the option to quickly purchase movie tickets, gifts or pay a bill while I wait to pick up Jude from school!  While all of these things seem innocent, they actually open my family and me up for some very smart person to take my information!  Yikes!

So what have I done to protect my phone and my husband's phone?  I downloaded Norton's Mobile Software...easy enough! 
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My phone and Jeremy's phone is now protected!  Norton's Mobile Security software has a lot to offer.  When you buy their software all of your devices are covered.  We have both phones covered under one account.  Another feature that I am really excited about is that it helps you recover all of your devices - you know because it is scary when you loose your phone in the pit of your messy purse!  Okay, that was just Mom Brain. 
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Our personal information is so important.  It is the worst feeling when you know that someone out there knows WAY too much information about you and your family.  My mom and dad had this happen to them recently.  They were taken advantage of and it was the worst feeling for me to see my parents go through such fear.  My dad's computer was literally taken over and all of their information was on their computer.  We immediately stepped up and had everything shut down and new cards issued...it was heartbreaking and scary.  Seeing how easy it was for that to happen has made me realize how important a great mobile security software is!  Norton's Mobile Security software also stops private information access and protects against digital access.  

Did you know that more than 1/3 of smartphone users have experienced a mobile cybercrime (2013 Norton Report).   That fact makes me really think about my usage and my security!
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So here it is!  I am protected!  I feel like using the Norton smartphone security software will just help us keep our sanity and our security!

Another great feature that Norton is offering is a Hot Spot Privacy option.  This helps you keep all of your important information private while using hot spots.  Protects against online identity theft, keeps user names and passwords safe, and prevents hacking.  All features that we often forget about when we are just surfing on our smartphone.  Both the Mobile Security and Hot Spot Privacy are great products to consider investing in for all of your devices. 
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Gotcha interested?  Well how about you try both of these options for 30 days for FREE!  Hello!  Free peace of mind, free security and free sanity! 

Use these links for your offers:
Norton's Mobile Security - Free 30 Day Trial
Norton's Hotspot Privacy - Free 30 Day Trial

Happy Surfing and Working with lots of Security!


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Have a Very Merry Christmas!

From our family to yours...Have a Merry Christmas. 

We hope your day is filled with joy, love and laughter. 


Monday, December 23, 2013

Frozen food – is it good?

Frozen food – is it good?

In today's world women have very little time on housework. That is why frozen products in bright packages are becoming increasingly popular. This is the fact of life - most fast-food products, and not just fast food ones, are cooked from frozen semi-prepared products. Due to the sharp increase in the number of couples who give all forces to work today, they have less and less time left for cooking. In such cases the simplest solution is to use frozen foods such as pizza, sandwiches and vegetables. Why spend hours on cooking a dish if you can quickly mix all that you find at hand? 

A wide range of frozen products for those who don’t want to spend the whole day trying to prepare dinner for the whole family can be found in the product collection of such popular English brand like Aunt Bessie’s - frozen mushrooms, carrot, sprouts, cabbage, vegetable mix.  Looking for a home-cooked food combined with traditional British rich taste? Ready to make a creative meal for various eating occasions based on product innovation? With Aunt Bessie’s frozen food products you can cook popular Yorkshire puddings, Croquettes or home-style chips in only a couple of minutes.

As well as British pies, the Aunt Bessie’s line of products is proud of its wide range of ready meals – potato products, vegetables, desserts. Being one of the world’s largest brands, they manage to deliver perfect quality and excellent taste, providing their consumers with a range of trusted traditional meals from the well-known brand. Rich in taste and simple in texture, all your family and friends will love them, any time and day of the week.

And finally, some interesting news from this brand: what do you usually do in the summer when walking in the park? Eat ice cream! And in the winter? In winter, you will choose something warm to taste. Aunt Bessie's food manufacturing company has come up with a replacement – it has invented a cup for ice cream with fried sausage, hot mashed potatoes with gravy and a few peas on top for decoration. Potato ice cream... Aunt Bessie’s food company tried to diversify the kinds of ice cream, adding a variety of new components. How do you like such a novelty from Aunt Bessie’s? Remember that those from Aunt Bessie’s are endlessly improving their famous product line and constantly coming up with something new. After all, Aunt Bessie’s frozen food company managed to build a solid food manufacturing business providing an excellent-tasting ready to bake food and making mealtimes easier for millions of people.

This is a guest post not written by me.  


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