Thursday, February 26, 2009

I had a dream.

A weird one. And I would REALLY like to know what it means.

Last night I dreamt that I was at a grocery store with Kate Gosling (from Jon & Kate Plus 8) and her children. Except some of them were teenage boys. Weird. I know. We were getting into their van but it wouldn't start. So I volunteered to rent a van for them and I would take them home. So I went into the grocery store (apparently it was one you could rent vans at) but had to take a quick trip to the bathroom. Well I got locked in (or something like that... this is where things start to get a little fuzzy) and wasn't able to help them.

I think I woke up around this time as that is all I remember.

Any insights as to what this means? Please share.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Did you eat pancakes today?

I sure hope so! I wanted to try something new in addition to the traditional pancake. So I made

German Apple Pancakes from Martha Stewart

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter (plus more for tin)
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter-melted
5 Tablespoons granulated sugar (plus more for tin)
2 Granny Smith apples (about 1 pound)
1/4 cup light-brown sugar
1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

Preheat oven to 450◦.
Butter inside each muffin cup of a 6-cup jumbo muffin tin; coat with granulated sugar.
Peel, core, and slice apples into 12 wedges, then cut wedges into 3 pieces.
In a medium bowl, toss apples with brown sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add apples and saute, turning occasionally, until caramelized (10 - 12 minutes). Remove pan from stove; let cool 5 minutes. Divide caramelized apples among prepared muffin cups. Set aside.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, sugar, melted butter, eggs, and milk; process for 3 minutes.
Pour batter over apples.
Transfer tin to oven; reduce heat to 400◦.
Bake until pancakes puff up, about 15 minutes.
Remove tin from oven; invert onto a flat work surface.
Dust with confectioners' sugar; serve immediately.

Oh my. They are tasty. I highly recommend this recipe. They aren't too healthy though. You could maybe do whole wheat flour and less sugar. 5 Tablespoons seemed like a LOT of sugar. So I only put in 4. Try them. Today. mmmmm.

The other day I was in the grocery store with no real purpose (I had some time to kill during my lunch break). As I roamed the aisles I found some fun products that I had never seen before. One of which was-

Caramel spread*?!?! It says it is great on toast & hot rolls. Pancakes were not mentioned but I gave it a try.

All I can say is Be still my soul. I don't think I will put syrup on my pancakes again. So yummy. I don't know how different it is from the caramel you put on ice cream or dip apples in. But it is gooey. And delicious. And can be drizzled on the German Apple Pancakes. Hello!

*There are so many products out there that I have never discovered before. My goal is to try 2 new-fangled foods a month. And share my thoughts with you. Stay tuned to see what I try next!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Mind Your Manners Monday

It's back. And hopefully better than ever.

I have a special place in my heart (and bookshelf) for books about manners/ etiquette. So when I saw this book at D.I. last summer, I had to snatch it up.

Especially when I need alot of help with succeeding in my social life!

As I perused the pages, I found some gems. As true today as they were in 1954 (or at least they should be).

What to do in public; on a bus.

"A girl boards the bus before her date does, but the boy gets off ahead of her. This is so he can help her alight- and also catch her pocketbook, scarf, or gloves, should they fall.

Have your fare ready when you get on. Naturally, a boy pays both his own fare and his date's but a girl who accidentally meets a boy she knows at the bus stop should not expect him to pay her fare. If he insists, though, she should let him pay. Such a small amount isn't worth a traffic-blocking argument. The girl stands aside while the boy takes care of money matters and waits for him. If the bus is very crowded, though, it's better for her to move back and let him join her later.

As a "healthy young thing" in a crowded bus, you should be glad to offer your seat to an older person who is standing- especially to a woman accompanied by a small child. And, sweet Sue, if a husky Hank beside you stays right where he is, that's all the more reason for you to offer your seat to an elderly person. Hank deserves to be embarrassed when you do!"

Well, I know what I will be doing this weekend. Waiting to "accidentally" meet my husky Hank at the bus stop.

Happy bus riding!

I tried it.

And it works!

After finding out you can make hash browns in a waffle maker, I HAD to try it.

Hash browns have always been a struggle for me. I am too impatient and stir them too much, which makes them gluey.

So the waffle maker is perfect.

You put them in.

Close it.

And let them cook- both sides at the same time.

It does take awhile so you do need to be patient- but there is no stirring involved!

Love it.

I was tempted to try to cook an egg in there, too... but didn't.

One day I might have to though.

p.s. Don't forget tomorrow is Pancake Tuesday!! So put away your waffle makers until Wednesday... and make some yummy pancakes.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A happy, happy birthday to you from me!

Today we are celebrating the February birthdays in my family.
My fabulous sister/hairstylist Andrea.
And my super cute niece, Lydia.

So as promised- I made a lip cake. Mmmm. Red Velvet cake with cream cheese frosting. With a few cupcakes on the side in case the cake doesn't feed all of the 26 people in our family. I was so excited to use these cute heart sprinkles. I almost forgot that I had them. I found them at my local Grocery store in Virginia- Harris Teeter. I had shopped there for 3 years before I discovered them. They were on a stand in the bakery section where they sold giant chocolate cookies, tubs of icing and sprinkles (for you to decorate yourself at home). They had other cute selections too. And reasonably priced. (it's a big tub) Much better than what you get at some craft stores. So check out your local grocery store and see what they have to offer. And let me know so I can buy some too!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I have a lot of needs.

Instructions: Type in your name and the word 'needs' in quotes (eg. "Shelley needs”) into a search engine and see what comes up. List the first 10!

1) Shelley needs some help.
2) Shelley needs help. (I am seeing a theme here...)
3) Shelley needs to go.
4) Shelley needs a mega. (??)
5) Shelley needs cocoa and cookies. And Prozac.
6) Shelley needs parts to put used bikes back on the road to usefulness.
7) Shelley needs your vote.
8) Shelley needs a new roommate. (hmmm... interesting)
9) Shelley needs to be house trained.
10) Shelley needs to pull out all her playmate tricks and give them a crash course in the ways of makeup and men.

Oh my, that was funny. Give it a try. And let me know when you do, so I can read it and laugh!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lasagna. Take dos.

I decided to try another lasagna.
A Lasagna with Mex-Appeal to be exact.
from Looneyspoons
2 cups chopped onions
2 cloves garlic- minced
1 1/2 cups chopped green pepper
1 can (28 ounces) tomatoes-undrained, cut up
1 cup salsa
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 can (19 ounces) black beans, drained & rinsed
1 can (19 ounces) red kidney beans, drained & rinsed
8 (7 inch) flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 small tomatoes- thinly sliced
Sour cream (optional)
Spray a large saucepan with non-stick spray. Add onions, garlic, and green pepper. Cook and stir over medium heat until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, salsa and cumin. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes. Stir in black beans and kidney beans. Remove from heat.
Spray a 9x13 baking dish with non-stick spray. Spread 1/3 of the bean mixture over bottom. Cover with half the tortillas (overlapping as needed), and half the cheese. Spoon another 1/3 of bean mixture on top of cheese, followed by remaining tortillas, and last of bean mixture. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with tomato slices and green onions. If desired, serve with a dollop of sour cream on top.
It was pretty tasty. But next time I think I would make a few changes.
Like replace one of the cans of beans with chicken. It was a little too beany for me.
And it makes alot. So unless you are feeding a lot of people- you might want to half it. I think 3 of us had it for 3 meals and still ended up throwing the last bit out as we had had enough.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Why do beans always "bubble" when you rinse them?

I don't get it. And it kind of disturbs me.

But not enough to stop putting them in delicious recipes.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Did you know?

(I am sure you do know... but I will share anyways!)

French Toast can be made in a Waffle Maker.

It cooks both sides at the same time.

Why should waffles get all the fun of having indents for your syrup and Elmo & Cookie Monster on them!! Or Mickey Mouse, Hello Kitty,the state of Texas or (my personal favorite) a keyboard. (Apparently it isn't real, but incredibly awesome!)

While googling "waffle irons" I found something about making hashbrowns in a waffle iron. Genius. I am going to try it.

What have YOU made in a waffle iron?

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Pay It Forward

I have seen this on a couple of blogs... and have been quite disappointed with the response. So come on people. Step it up. Be a man. Take some pepto bismal and leave a comment. (name that movie... changed for my usage, of course)

This is how we roll: The first 3 people to leave a comment on this post will receive a handmade gift from me during this year—when and what will be a surprise.
There’s a small catch. But a good, loving, caring, sharing catch...

Post this on your blog and then come back and leave a comment telling me you’re in. Fun, huh? Remember, only the first 3 comments receive the gift.

It might be a big bowl of popcorn. Because that is what I am going to go make me right now. Mmmmm. But likely not. Unless you really want popcorn... then we will work out a deal.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Two Lips

A couple weeks ago I found a lip shaped cake pan at a local thrift store for only $3.99. I was soo excited. And couldn't wait to use it.
My niece and nephew were having a cake walk at their school so I agreed to bake some cakes for it. And being the day before Valentine's Day, I knew exactly what I was going to make.
Two Lips!
The first one was a chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting. I just realized that the dividing line is totally wrong- that it should go down in the middle. ha!

Second one was a strawberry cake with chocolate frosting.
I thought brown lips might look a little weird- so I covered it with a gazillion pink sugar sprinkles. It was hard to give them away.
I just hope they tasted as delightful as I imagined they might.
But there are plans to make another one for the
February birthdays in my family.

Happy Valentine's Day.
Hope you had a fun day. I worked at one job from 7am to 11am.
And another from 4pm to 9pm.
With a nap, a shower and a workout in between.
I did make heart shaped muffins to share with my morning co-workers, but forgot to take a picture. Oops.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Cookies for Breakfast??!!

yup. That is right. Cookies for Breakfast.

I was babysitting my niece & nephews the other night... and while they were sleeping I perused the Disney Magic Kitchen Cookbook they got from the library.

Of course the

Don't Forget Breakfast Cookies caught my eye.

1/2 cup butter-softened

2/3 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 eggs

1 3/4 cups white whole wheat flour (I didn't have WHITE whole wheat flour... so I used 1 1/4 cups of whole wheat and 1/2 cup white flour).

3 cups multigrain cereal flakes with blueberries (I couldn't find just blueberries, but I did find this. And it worked perfectly!)

Beat butter for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and baking soda.

Beat until mixed. Add eggs. Add flour and beat until mixed.

Stir in cereal.

Place 1/4 cup of dough on greased cookie sheet. (Or a fabulous Silpat!)

Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

Let sit on pan for 1 minute.

Remove and cool on cooling rack.

Makes 12 cookies (I only got 9??)

Delicious AND Nutritious AND so easy. Well I don't know how nutritous. But they have cereal in them, so they have to be healthy. Right?