Friday, September 30, 2011

New Meal Fridays #62 - Mini Skillet Meatloaf

Made: Sept 29th 2011
From: Great Easy Meals

1/3 cup of breadcrumbs
1/3 cup of milk
1/3 cup of chopped fresh parsley
1 large egg
3 Tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
1 small onion, finely minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 cloves garlic, grated or finely minced
1 and 1/2 pounds of meatloaf mix (ground beef, pork and/or veal)
salt and pepper
1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil
1/2 cup of ketchup
1 to 2 Tablespoons of packed light brown sugar
1 Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar

Mix the breadcrumbs, milk, parsley, egg, Worcestershire sauce, onion, chili powder and garlic in a large bowl. Add the meat, season with sat and pepper and mix with your hands until combined. Shape into 6 3-4 inch oval loaves.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add the loaves and brown about 3 minutes per side.

Whisk the ketchup, sugar and vinegar together in a bowl and brush a few tablespoonfuls over the meat. Add 1/2 cup of water to the skillet and cover and simmer over low heat until cooked through, about 15 minutes

Transfer the loaves to a plate. Add the remaining ketchup mixture to the skillet and cook over high heat, stirring until thick, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve the meatloaves with the hot glaze.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No "meatloaf mix" instead I used ground beef and added in some thawed "frozen" veggies. I had to use more oil than it called for so it made the whole thing a little... oily. But worked out. Arnold still prefers the one I made this summer to this one. But that's alright. All the mini loafs were eaten before bed. And I just can't make them look like the picture, but here's the best I could


New Meal Fridays #61 - BLT Pasta Salad

Made: Sept 28th
From: Great Easy Meals - my new book!!!

12 oz corkscrew-shaped pasta
1/2 cup of milk
12 oz of lean bacon
3 ripe medium tomatoes, cut into chunks
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper
1/2 cup of mayonnaise
1/4 cup of sour cream
4 Tablespoons of chopped chives or scallion greens
5 heads Bibb lettuce, quartered, or 5 cups of chopped romaine hearts

Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water as the label directs. Drain and toss with the milk in a large bowl; set aside.

Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Discard all but 3 Tablespoons of drippings from the pan. Add the tomatoes, thyme and garlic to the pan and toss until warmed through; season with salt and pepper. Crumble the bacon into bite-size pieces; set aside 1/4 cup for topping. Toss the remaining bacon and tomato mixture with the pasta

Mix the mayonnaise, sour cream and 3 Tablespoons of chives with pasta until evenly combined. Season with salt and pepper. Add the lettuce; toss again to coat. Top with the reserved bacon and the remaining 1 Tablespoon of chives. Serve at room temperature.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't have corkscrew-shaped pasta so I used elbow pasta. And My bacon was from M&M Meats so it's already ready to cook. I didn't have any Bibb lettuce so I used some Romain lettuce you buy in the store of 2 packs already down to smaller portions and sliced them up. It worked really well. SUCH a yummy meal. Doesn't freeze well but good!


New Meal Fridays #60 - Quick 'n Crunchy Potato Chip Chicken

Made: Sept 27th 2011
From: Betty Crocker Cookbook

4 cups of sour cream and onion-flavoured potato chips, crushed (about 1 cup)
1 Tablespoon of parsley flakes
1 egg
2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce
2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

In a shallow bowl, mix crushed potato ships and parsley. In another shallow bowl beat egg and Worcestershire sauce.

In a 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-low heat. Dip chicken into egg mixture, then coat with potato chip mixture.

Cook Chicken in oil for 10 to 12 minutes, turning once, until deep golden brown and juice of chicken is clear when center of thickets part is cut.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't have any parsley flakes so we did without. And I have to say I LOVE this one because it finally gave me something to do with the end of the chip bags! So now we at our chips and when we get to the bottom I put them all in a zip lock bag and toss into the freezer, ready for the next time I do this!


New Meal Fridays #59 - Au Gratin Potatoes and Ham

Made: Sept 21st 2011
From: Fix it and Forget It

10 potatoes, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
2 Tablespoons of flour
1/4 teaspoon of pepper (optional)
1/2 pound of Velveeta cheese, cubed
1/2 cup of milk
1/2 cup - 1 cup of fully cooked ham OR sliced hot dogs

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker.

Cover and cook on Low for 7 to 8 hours.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I couldn't find Velveeta cheese ANYWHERE. and I started to make supper before realizing it. SO instead I used an entire container of Kraft Cheese Wiz. I waited to get a verdict from Arnold before telling him what was in it but he actually liked it.


Bonus New Food Friday - #58 - Jello cups

Kyler wanted Jello and Quinton wanted to help make it so here's what we did:

2 glass cups (well 4 would be better but 2 is all we had)
1 - 4 cup or larger measuring cup
gummy candy (worms, sharks, strawberries ect)
Jello (pick any colour)

Mix up Jello according to package in the measuring cup.

Place gummies in the cup and making their way out.

Fill cups to desired height and place in fridge.

Later you get these:



Next time we are doing blue or something for the sharks.

New Meal Fridays #57 - Easy-Does-It Spaghetti

Made:Sept 20th 2011
From: Fix it and forget it

Serves 8

2 pounds of ground chuck, browned and drained
1 cup of chopped onions
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 - 15 oz cans of tomato sauce
2-3 teaspoons of Italian seasoning
1.5 teaspoons of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
2 - 4 oz cans of sliced mushrooms, drained
6 cups of tomato juice
16oz dry spaghetti, broken into 4-5 inch pieces
grated Parmesan cheese

Combine all ingredients except spaghetti and cheese in a 4 quart (or larger) slow cooker

Cover. Cook on Low for 6 to 8 hours or on High for 3 to 5 hours. Turn to High during the last 30 minutes and stir in dry spaghetti. (If spaghetti is not fully cooked, continue cooking for another 10 minutes, checking to make sure it is not becoming over-cooked.)

Sprinkle individual servings with Parmesan cheese

Miranda's Mix Ups: So no mushrooms. I used ground beef and I added in (instead of mushrooms) garden carrots. IT was so yummy!! I loved it! I did have to add a bit of extra water to make sure the spaghetti was totally cooked.


New Meal Fridays #56 - Spanish Chicken & Rice

Made:Sept 19th 2011
From: Easy Harvest Meals

1 Tablespoon of olive oil
4 skinless, boneless, chicken breasts
2 garlic cloves minced
1 chopped onion
28 oz can undrained tomatoes
3/4 cup of rice
1/2 cup of stuffed olives
1/2 cup of ham
1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon of paprika

**written like it is in the book**

Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a wide saucepan over medium heat. Add 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts. Brown 4 minutes per side.

Add 2 minced garlic cloves and 1 chipped onion. Stir often for 2 minutes.

Add 28oz can of undrained tomatoes, 3/4 cup of uncooked rice, 1/2 cup of each stuffed olives and diced ham, and 1/2 tsp of each dried oregano leaves and paprika. Bring to a boil. Cover. Simmer, stirring often, 30 minutes

Serves 4

Miranda's Mix Ups: WOW what a hard one. I had it planned for the first meal of those 2 week planning sections but I didn't read it right. I had no idea I needed ham! So I had to wait until we had a ham meal to get it in and even then I had to double check my next ham meal and I had to cook the ham alone FIRST then make the 2 meals. Sometimes it's hard. No olives in ours and I used garden tomatoes again to get rid of them. Boiled them and squished them up until I got it all done! It worked out great. Even the boys liked it!


New Meal Fridays #55 - Chili Beef 'n Pasta

Made:Sept 16th 2011
From: Betty Crocker Cookbook

2.5 cups of uncooked rotini pasta
1 pound of lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 can of condensed fiesta chili beef with beans soup
1 jar of salsa
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese

Cook and drain pasta as directed on package.

Meanwhile, in a 12 inch skillet, cook beef and onion over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown; drain. Reduce heat to medium. Stir soup, salsa and water into beef. Cook until thoroughly heated.

Serve beef mixture over pasta. Sprinkle with cheese

Miranda's Mix Ups: I did it just like it said. HOWEVER I couldn't find the fiesta chili beef with beans soup so I got one similar to it. It was so yummy! And I even made up some fresh bread to go with it.


New Meal Fridays #54 - Pizza Rice

Made:Sept 12th 2011
From: Fit It and Forget It

Makes 6 servings

2 cups of rice, uncooked
3 cups of chunky pizza sauce
2.5cups of water
7oz of caned mushrooms, undrained
4 oz or pepperoni, sliced
1 cup of grated cheese

Combine rice, sauce, water, mushrooms and pepperoni. Stir

Cover. Cook on Low for 10 hours or on High for 6 hours.

Sprinkle with cheese before serving.

Miranda's Mix Ups: Can ya guess? no mushrooms and double the pepperoni. It was good! But I'll admit, I want the bread with my pizza!!

Sorry no pictures.

New Meal Fridays #53 - Healthy homemade French Fries

Made:Sept 15th 2011
From: Internet Recipe

5 Large Roasting Potatoes
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Begin with some nice roasting potatoes as shown here. While you’re doing that – lets preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Then Peel and Wash the potatoes to prepare for slicing.

Slice however you wish. Once sliced, place the potatoes in a bowl and cover with water. **creators note - I like to have the potatoes soak in salted water for about 30 minutes to release some of the starch and allow the fries to crisp up in the oven. **

After the 30 minutes elapsed – it is time we dry the potatoes. This is a crucial step. If the potatoes are not completely dry, they will not crisp up as nicely and the moisture will cause them to steam in the oven.

Lets go ahead and lay the potatoes on some parchment paper, season them with salt and pepper and brush some olive oil on the tops of them. Once in the oven, ensure that you turn them periodically to ensure even browning. Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used whatever potatoes we had in the house. And I have nothing fancy to cut mine with but here's how they turned out. SOO yummy


New Meal Fridays #52 - Homemade Salsa

Made:Sept 1st 2011
From: Internet website

I found this recipe on a website and thought I would try it. I had just about everything I needed. I had WAY too many ripe tomatoes in the back yard and just needed some thing to do with them before they went bad in my window ledge. So here's what I did:

8 cups of tomatoes, finely chopped
1 and 1/2 cup of onions, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup of green peppers, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup of red peppers, coarsely chopped
6 to 7 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup of coriander, finely chopped
2/3 cup of red wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon of salt
1 teaspoon of while (or black) pepper

Combine all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium once it begins to boil.

Boil and stirring for 10 minutes. Jar (find instructions elsewhere).

Miranda's Mix Ups: I only had enough for 4 cups of salsa so I did half the recipe. I also had no coriander so that wasn't added. And I won't lie, when I first did it I left it chunky. But when Arnold got home he boiled it and it thinned out ALOT. He had to add a few tablespoons of cornstarch to it. He LOVED it, as did my parents who ate it that weekend. I have since made it twice more and it is great! I've even jar-ed some for Christmas gifts

Before boiled:



New Meal Fridays #51 - Creamy Ham noodle Casserole

Made:August 28th 2011
From: Fall Freezer Meals

10 cups of uncooked tricolour spiral pasta
4 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup of chopped onion
1/4 cup of butter, cubed
3 cans of condensed cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
3 cups of 2% milk
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups of cubed fully cooked ham
2 cans of mushroom stems and pieces, drained
1 cup of crushed butter-flavoured crackers

Cook pasta according to directions. Meanwhile, in a dutch oven, saute the celery, pepper and onion in butter until tender. Stir in the soup, milk and salt. In a very large bowl, combine the soup mixture, ham and mushrooms. Drain pasta; add to soup mixture and toss to coat.

Transfer to 2 greased 13inch x 9 inch baking dishes. Top with cracker crumbs. Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Bake the remaining casserole, uncovered at 350F for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No celery, no green pepper, no mushrooms. And I even forgot to bake it and add the crushed butter-flavoured crackers. I was actually going to use this package of goldfish crackers I had found but I totally forgot! Good meal though!


New Meal Fridays #50 - Creamy Turkey (Chicken) with puff pastry

Made:August 22nd 2011
From: Freezer Fall Meals

1 package of frozen puff pastry
4 cans of chunky chicken corn chowder soup
4 cups of cubed cooked turkey (I used chicken)
2 packages (16oz each) of frozen peas and carrots, thawed
1 package of cream cheese, softened
1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Thaw one sheet of puff pastry. Cut into 6 squares. Cut each square in half diagonally; transfer to 2 greased baking sheets. Bake at 400F for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, combine the soup, turkey, peas and carrots, cream cheese and pepper. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered for 5 minutes or until cream cheese is melted.

Serve half the soup mixture with puff pastry triangles. Cool the remaining soup mixture; transfer to freezer container for up to 3 months after.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used chicken. This was my very first time working with puff pastry and after doing some research and self discovery, of being wrong!, I realized I needed to roll out the puff pastry first. And because of this I didn't get it just the shape they were talking about and the picture looks like but it was WONDERFUL! I loved it. Also I would say that when you put everything in the pot consider adding cream cheese first then the soup, waiting a bit then everything else. I found I had "chunks" of cream cheese that didn't melt out totally. It was a nice surprise however.

Again, Hubby was late home and no pictures.

New Meal Fridays #49 - Tomato Baguette Pizza (with chicken)

Made: August 16th 2011
From: Farmers Market Cookbook

3 cups of sliced fresh mushrooms
2 medium onions, sliced
2 teaspoons of olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon of Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon of salt
Dash of pepper
1 French bread baguette (10.5 ounces), halved lengthwise
1/5 cups of shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided!
3/4 cup of thinly sliced fresh basil leaves, divided
3 medium tomatoes, sliced

In a large skillet, saute mushrooms and onions in oil until tender. Add the garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper; cook 1 minute longer.

Place baguette halves on a baking sheet; sprinkle with 3/4 cup of cheese. Top with r1/2 cup of basil, mushroom mixture, tomatoes and remaining cheese.

Bake at 400F for 10 to 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with remaining basil. Cut each portion into 3 slices.

Miranda's Mix Ups: NO mushrooms... so gross! Everything else was the same. However I did add in some boiled (so it would shred better) chicken before the final layer of cheese. SO yummy

Sorry no pictures. I'm finding anytime I make something and hubby isn't home for supper I forget to take a picture. Which is too bad cause this was SO good!

New Meal Fridays # 48 - Linguine with Peas and Tomatoes

Made: August 15th
From: Farmers Market Cookbook (2011)

8 ounces of uncooked multi-grain linguine
1.5 cups of frozen shelled edamame (I changed to peas)
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon of olive oil
2 cups of cherry tomatoes, halved
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup of white wine OR reduced-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup of crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

1 - Cook linguine according to package directions, adding edamame during the last 5 minutes; drain, reserving 1/2 cup of cooking liquid.

2 - In a large nonstick skillet, saute onions in oil until tender. Add the tomatoes, garlic, oregano and salt. Add wine and reserved cooking liquid; cook and stir for 2 minutes.

3 - Add linguine and edamame; cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes longer. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with cheese and basil; toss to coat.

Miranda's Mix Ups: NO edamame, I used peas instead. And I guess "cherry tomatoes" are out! Heaven forbid! So we used grape tomatoes instead. Really yummy!!

Sorry no pictures :(

New Meal Fridays #47 - Meatball Stroganoff

Made: August 10th 2011
From: Fast Fix Family Food pg 163

1 12- to 16-oz package frozen cooked meatballs
1 cup lower-sodium beef broth
1 4-oz can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 8-oz carton dairy sour cream
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 cup milk
1 Tbsp Dijon-style mustard
4 cups hot cooked wide egg noodles

Step 1-
In a large skillet, combine meatballs, broth, and drained mushrooms. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover; simmer 15 minutes or until heated through.

Step 2-
In a bowl, stir together sour cream and flour. Whisk in milk and mustard. Stir sour cream mixture into skillet. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; simmer 1 minute more. Serve over hot cooked noodles. If desired, stir in snipped fresh parsley. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Miranda's Mix Ups: NO mushrooms... ewww gross! But it was a good meal!

Sorry No pictures

Monday, September 26, 2011

A Weekend at Nana And Papa's house

This weekend we went to my parents house! What a weekend it was!

Thursday night Arnold and a neighbour got the bench seat out of the back of the van for us. We put in our clothes and things we needed. We were ready for Friday.

Friday the boys had school and then we headed out the door. We went to Metro and picked up sub sandwiches (we brought our own mustard) and some chips. Then off to get Arnold. The highway was a little packed already so we ended up taking a few different routes. With the crazy rain and crazy amount of people on the roads it was nuts! But we did just fine!

We got Arnold and headed out to Nana and Papa's house. With 1 stop to get a drink on the way there we got to Nana and Papa's around 9pm'ish.

I went out to visit with my mom at the scrapbooking store and then I went to get Jack from the train station. The train was a little late so we didn't get back until almost 11pm.

We visited with Mom and Dad for a bit then everyone headed off to bed. It was crazy! We all realized that this weekend, Jack, Arnold, the boys and I were "renting" out the house! It had food (and if not we had a GC to get some) and Nana and Papa were working ALL weekend! What a sucky thing! But it turned out alright.

Saturday morning we got up and started on things right away. Arnold got working on the computers (they needed to be reformatted and started again) and got them going. Jack and I took the boys out. We went to the grocery store, the flower store, the sub store, then to mom's scrapbooking store and last to the bakery. We brought Kyler and the food home. Kyler started to rake the lawn and Quinton, Jack and I went to Value Village. I got some tops and pants and some things for Halloween. Then to the book store and the pool store.

When we got back to the house Jack and Arnold moved the hot tub a few inches closer to the house and we got started on the pool. I began to fill the water bags up while jack emptied the pool a bit and we got things ready to go for the closing. Once it was all ready we left it until dad got home to finish it up.

We made supper, visited with Grandma and Grandpa (the kids GREAT grandparents) and then came home. We had supper and headed outside. The big boys and I did the pool and Mom and the little boys went to the park. After supper the boys played some Wii and Mom and I went to the store for dessert. We had chocolate cake and ice cream. SO yummy!

The next morning Arnold was back at the computers and we hung around the house for a bit. Eventually we brought the boys outside and I finished packing up.

It was a busy weekend! We got home to our house in Toronto by about 5pm.

Next time we go down we plan on taking the fabric off the gazebo, staining the steps and hot tub, if we can, and making thanksgiving dinner :) It's going to be a busy weekend!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Pssst.... I got a new book!

Today my new daycare boy and I went for a walk. We got a few more things needed to get us ready to "live" in our house and be ready for this year.

My most exciting purchase today (Aside from my new calendars, bingo dabbers and hand sanitizer) was "Great Easy Meals ~ 250 Fun and Fast Recipes" by Food network magazine. I'm so excited to see how it goes with this book! I may have to ring this book first! I've already lost pages from my 4F book!

Here's to more recipes and MAYBE getting to my 100 new goal!

Friday, September 16, 2011

New Meal Fridays #46 - Asian Beef and Noodle Bowl

Made: August 8th 2011
From: Fast Fix Family Food pg 124

4 cups of water
2 three-ounce packages of ramen noodles
2 teaspoons of chili oil or 2 teaspoons of cooking oil plus 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
12 o of beef flank steak or top round steak, cut into think, bite-size strips
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1 cup of beef broth
2 Tablespoons of soy sauce
2 cups of baby spinach leaves or torn fresh spinach
1 cup packaged coarsely shredded fresh carrot
1/4 cup of snipped fresh cilantro

1 - In a large saucepan, bring the water to boiling. If desired, break up noodles; drop noodles into the boiling water. (reserve the flavour packets for another use). Return to boiling; boil for 2 to 3 minutes or just until noodles are tender but still firm, stirring occasionally. Drain noodles; set aside.

2 - Meanwhile, in an extra-large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add beef, ginger, and garlic; cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes or until beef is desired doneness. Carefully stir broth and soy sauce into skillet. Bring To boiling reduce heat. Add spinach, carrot and noodle to skillet, stir to combine. Heat through. Stir in cilantro.

Makes 4 servings.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I did it just like it said. I really liked this one, as did the boys, which I didn't think they would like since it had spinach in it but they loved it!

Sorry No pictures

New Meal Fridays #45 - Baked Chicken Nugget Spaghetti

Made: August 4th 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles pg 29

8 ounces of uncooked spaghetti, broken in half
1 jar of tomato pasta sauce
1 box of frozen breaded chicken breast nuggets
1.5 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese

1 - In 3 quart saucepan, cook spaghetti as directed on package. Drain, return to saucepan.

2 - Meanwhile, heat oven to 400F. Spray 13x9 inch glass baking dish with cooking spray.

3 - Stir pasta sauce into cooked spaghetti. Pour into baking dish, spreading evenly to cover bottom of dish. Arrange frozen chicken nuggets in single layer over spaghetti mixture.

4 - Bake uncovered for 8 minutes. Remove from oven. Turn chicken nuggets over and sprinkle cheese over top.

5 - Return to oven; bake 6 to 8 minutes longer or until chicken is thoroughly heated and cheese is melted.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used M&M meats chicken nuggets. We got 2 boxes on sale and I knew I should get through one quickly so we used this. It's a great super easy fast meal! The boys loved it!

Sorry no pictures

New Meal Fridays #44 - Speedy Enchilada Bake

Made: August 3rd 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles pg 4

1 cup of chopped Italian plum tomatoes
1 can of whole kernel corn with red and green peppers
1 can of enchilada sauce
1 container of refrigerated taco sauce with seasoned ground beef
4 cups of small round corn tortilla chips
2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup sliced green onions.

1 - Heat oven to 375F. Spray 8-inch square glass baking dish with cooking spray. In medium bowl, mix tomatoes, corn and enchilada sauce.

2 - In baking dish, layer half of the taco sauce with ground beef, 1.5 cups of the chips, 1/2 of the cheese and half of corn mixture. Top with remaining taco sauce with ground beef, 1/5 cups of chips and 1/5 cup of cheese and remaining corn mixture.

3 - Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese and the onions. Arrange remaining 1 cup chips upright around edge of dish, overlapping as necessary.

4 - Bake uncovered for 35 to 40 minutes or until bubbly and thoroughly heated.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No red and green peppers and I suck at chopping up tomatoes so I'm pretty sure I used more than that. Really good. I even measured out my own portion of the meal and it was HUGE! And still low in cals! Very good!

Sorry No Pictures

New Meal Fridays #43 - Chicken Pot Pie Bubble Bake

Made:August 2nd 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles pg 19

1 can of condensed cream of chicken soup
1 1/3cups of milk
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 cups of refrigerated new potato wedges cut in half crosswise
3 cups of cubed deli rotisserie chicken without skin
1 bag of mixed vegetables thawed
1 can of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1 - Heat oven to 375F. Spray 13x9 inch glass baking dish with cooking spray. In large bowl, mix soup, milk and Italian seasoning. Stir in potatoes, chicken and thawed vegetables.

2 - separate dough into 10 biscuits. Cut each into quarters; add to potato mixture. Stir gently to mix well; spoon into baking dish.

3 - Bake uncovered for 35 to 40 minutes or until top is deep golden brown and biscuits are no longer doughy inside. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 4 to 6 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No changes :) And Really yummy!

Sorry No Pictures

New Meal Fridays #42 -Doubly Cheesy Ham Divan Bake

Made:July 14th 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles pg 5

3 cups of uncooked medium egg noodles
2 boxes of Green Giant frozen broccoli & cheese flavored sauce
2 cups cubed cooked ham
1 cup finely shredded Cheddar-American cheese blend
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 jar of sliced mushrooms, drained
3/4 cup coarsely crushed bite-size cheese crackers

1 - In 4 quart saucepan or dutch oven, cook noodles as directed on package. Drain; return to dutch oven

2 - Meanwhile, heat oven to 350F. Spray 8-inch square glass baking dish with cooking spray. Cut small slit in top of each pouch of vegetables; place both on microwaveable plate. Microwave on high 4 to 5 minutes or until broccoli is crisp-tender.

3 - Into cooked noodles in Dutch oven, gently stir broccoli with cheese sauce, ham, cheese, milk, pepper, and mushrooms. Spoon into baking dish.

4 - Bake uncovered 20 to 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Sprinkle crushed crackers over top before serving.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't use mushrooms (ewww) and I forgot to put the crushed crackers on! Aside from that it was great!

Sorry no picture :(

New Meal Fridays #41 - Cheesy Hamburger Hash

Made:June 27th 2011
From: Betty Crocker Cook Book pg 20

1 pound of lean ground beef
1 Tablespoon butter or margarine
1 bag of refrigerated diced potatoes with onions
1 can of diced tomatoes with Italian herbs
1 Tablespoon pizza seasoning or Italian seasoning
1.5 cups of shredded pizza cheese blend (mozzarella and Cheddar Cheese)
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 - In 12-inch nonstick skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat 8 to 10 minutes stirring occasionally, until brown; drain. Remove beef and drippings from pan.

2 - Melt butter in same skillet. Add potatoes. Cover and cook over medium heat about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until almost tender. Stir in beef, tomatoes and pizza seasoning. Cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly heated.

3 - Sprinkle with cheese and parsley. Cover and heat until cheese is melted.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I can't find diced tomatoes with Italian herbs ANWHERE so instead I've just used a normal diced tomatoes and added in Italian herbs instead! But it worked and tasted great!

Sorry No pictures.

New Meal Fridays #40 - Mile High Mexican Torta

Made:June 24th 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles pg 52

1 lb of lean ground beef
1 can of diced tomatoes with sweet onions, drained
1 can of spicy chili beans, undrained
4 Tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup of sour cream
1 Tablespoon of taco seasoning mix
3 flour tortillas for burritos
2 cups of finely shredded taco-flavoured cheese blend

1 - Heat oven to 375F. Spray 9 inch glass pie pan with cooking spray. In 120inch nonstick skillet, cook ground beef over medium0high heat, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked drain. Stir in tomatoes, chili beans and 2 tablespoons of the cilantro

2 - Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix sour cream and taco seasoning mix

3 - Place 1 flour tortilla in bottom of pile man. Spread about 2.5 tablespoons of sour cream mixture over tortilla. Top with 1/3 of ground beef mixture and 1/2 cup of the cheese. Repeat layers 2 more times. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

4 - Bake uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons cilantro before serving; cut into wedges

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used a whole container of taco seasoning mix and I couldn't find any of the spicy chili beans or the diced tomatoes with sweet onions so I made due with "normal" ones. It was really good! We have made it 2 or 3 more times since then!

New Food Friday #39 - Asian Veggie Pasta

Made: June 23rd 2011
From: Farmer Market Cookbook pg 23

4 quarts of water
8 ounces uncooked angel hair pasta
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 - inch pieces
3/4 cup julienned carrots
1/3 cup of reduced-fat creamy peanut butter
3 Tablespoons rice vinegar
3 Tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup of unsalted peanuts, chopped

1 - In a Dutch oven, bring the water to a boil. Add pasta and asparagus cook for 3 minutes. Stir in carrots; cook for 1 minute or until pasta is tender. Drain and keep warm.

2 - In a small saucepan, combine the peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar and pepper flakes. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Pour over pasta mixture, toss to coat. Sprinkle with peanuts.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't have any rice vinegar so I used apple-cider vinegar instead. Turns out I *did* have the rice vinegar at home but didn't realize it. I also didn't use the 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. It was half that and the boys said it was too hot!


New Food Friday #38 - Creamy Pasta Primavera

Made: June 21st 2011
From: Farmers Market Cookbook pg 15

2 cups of uncooked gemelli or spiral pasta
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
3 medium carrots cut into strips
2 teaspoons canola oil
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 - Cook pasta according to the package directions. In a large skillet, saute the asparagus and carrots in oil until crisp-tender. Add the tomatoes and garlic; cook 1 minute longer

2 - Stir in the cheese, cream and pepper. Drain pasta; toss with aspargus mixture.

Miranda's Mix Ups: Just what it said (with a bit more garlic) but so good! I made it from memory at my parents house the next week!


New Food Friday #37 - Beef and Broccoli Stir-fry

Made:June 15th 2011
From: The best of Cooking with Kids pg

1 lb of beef flank steaks or sirloin cut into 1/4 inch thick strips
1/3 cup of soy sauce
3 Tablespoons of Chinese cooking wine or dry sherry
3 Tablespoons of Asian sesame oil
2 Tablespoons of light brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon of fresh ginger root, minced
6 cups of broccoli florets
2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
6 green onions cut into 1 inch pieces
1 sweet red pepper diced
1/3 cup of chicken broth
2 teaspoons of cornstarch

1 - In a bowl, combine the steak, soy sauce, sherry, sesame oil, brown sugar, garlic and ginger. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour or overnight.

2 - Place broccoli in a steamer basket over boiling water. Cover and steam for 2 minutes or just until the broccoli turns bright green. Remove from heat and rinse under cold water to stop any further cooking.

3 - Drain the beef completely, reserving the marinade. Heat oil in wok or large skillet over high. Add the beef strips and stir-fry just until the meat is no longer pink about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the pan. Add broccoli, green onions and red peppers, and continues stir-frying until vegetables are just tender-crips, about 2 to 3 minutes

4 - Stir the chicken broth and cornstarch into the reserved marinade and add to the vegetables in the pan. Cook stirring constantly until the sauce comes to a simmer and begins to thicken - 1 to 2 minutes. Return the beef strips to the wok and cook, stirring for one minute or just until heated through and coated with sauce. Remove from heat and serve immediately with steam rice or noodles.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No red peppers for us. And I believe I found something else to use instead of Chinese cooking wine or dry sherry. I'm not 100% sure what it was but I'm pretty sure I used something different.


New Food Fridays ~ April

During the Month of April Arnold and I tried our hardest (after having to buy a new car the month before) to get as many meals out of the house with the food we already had. So our month of "new meals" was 0. I made no meals, but I did eat out of the deep freezer at least 3 times a week and it worked! Very well!!

New Food Fridays #35 - CPM - Taco Joes

Made: May 10th 2011
From: Betty Crocker New Recipe Cards Cookbook

3 lbs lean ground beef
1 can of Old El Paso refried beans
1 can of Old El Paso enchilada sauce
1 package of Old El Paso taco seasoning mix
1 jar of Thick N Chunky Salsa
25 hot dog or bratwurst buns spilt
3 cups of shredded Mexican cheese blend
3 cups of shredded lettuce
2 large tomatoes chopped (about 2 cups)
1 container of sour cream

**Keep in mind this makes 25 sandwiches so feel free to "Downsize"

1 - In a 12 inch skillet, cook beef over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown; drain. In a 3.5-4 quart slow cooker place beef. Stir in refried beans, enchilada sauce, taco seasoning mix and salsa.

2 - cover and cook on Low heat setting for 4 to 6 hours

3 - To server, fill each bun with about 1/3 cup of beef mixture and top with cheese, lettuce, tomato and sour cream.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't make THAT many of them! It was yummy still the same. We did have leftovers for a while.


New Food Fridays #36 - Beefy Bean and Corn Chili

Made: June 9th 2011
From: Pillsbury Casseroles page 21

1lb of ground beef
2 cans of spicy chili beans, undrained
1 can of diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can of Green Giant Niblets whole kernel corn, undrained
1 can of Old El Paso chopped green chiles

1 - In a 3 quart saucepan, cook ground beef over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until thoroughly cooked; drain well.

2 - Stir in remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to medium cook 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly heated and flavours are blended.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No green chiles for our family. But just as yummy!


New Food Fridays #34 - Grilled Buffalo Chicken Sticks

Made: May 9th 2011
From: Betty Crocker Fun Summer Appetizers pg 39

2 Tablespoons of butter or margarine, melted
1/4 cup of original cayenne pepper sauce or re pepper sauce
1 Tablespoon of honey
1/2 teaspoon of celery seed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package (1lb) chicken breast tenders (not breaded)
1/2 cup blue cheese dressing

1 - In a medium bowl mix butter, pepper sauce, honey, celery seed and salt. Remove 2 tablespoons sauce mixture and set aside. Ad chicken to remaining sauce mixture and stir to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes but no longer than 2 hours.

2 - Meanwhile, soak ten 10 to 12 inch wooden skewers in water for 30 minutes.

3 - Brush grill rack with vegetable oil. Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade. Thread each chicken tender on a skewer.

4 - Cover and grill chicken over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, turning once and brush frequently with reserved sauce mixture, until no longer pink in center. Discard any remaining sauce mixture and serve chicken with blue cheese dressing.

Miranda's Mix Ups: These are meant as appetizers but I love them! So I made them as a "meal" for our Monday night group! I didn't have cayenne pepper sauce or red pepper sauce so I just used whatever pepper sauce I had in the fridge (I think chili pepper?). Still just as yummy and had a great kick to it!


New Food Fridays #33 - Slow Cooker 20 Garlic Chicken Dinner

Made: May 5th 2011

1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
3 to 3 1/2 lb cut-up frying chicken
1 large onion, sliced
1 medium bulb garlic (about 20 cloves)

1 In small bowl, mix salt, paprika, pepper and oil to form paste; spread evenly over each piece of chicken.

2 In 5- to 6-quart slow cooker, place onion slices. Arrange chicken over onion. Separate garlic into cloves; do not peel cloves. Place garlic cloves around chicken.

3 Cover; cook on Low setting 7 to 8 hours.

4 With slotted spoon, remove chicken, onion and garlic from slow cooker; place on serving platter. Squeeze garlic cloves to use cooked garlic on mashed potatoes, vegetables or bread.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I just used Chicken breasts for this one. It was SO good! I LOVE garlic!


Found : here

New Food Fridays #31 - Spinach Lasagna Rolls

Made: March 29th 2011 - for the March Meals from the Web

Spinach Lasagna Rolls

9 lasagna noodles, cooked
10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and completely drained
15 oz fat free ricotta cheese (I like Polly-o)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
salt and fresh pepper
32 oz tomato sauce
9 tbsp (about 3 oz) part skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 350°. Combine spinach, ricotta, Parmesan, egg, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Ladle about 1 cup sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 12 baking dish.

Place a piece of wax paper on the counter and lay out lasagna noodles. Make sure noodles are dry. Take 1/3 cup of ricotta mixture and spread evenly over noodle. Roll carefully and place seam side down onto the baking dish. Repeat with remaining noodles.

Ladle sauce over the noodles in the baking dish and top each one with 1 tbsp mozzarella cheese. Put foil over baking dish and bake for 40 minutes, or until cheese melts. Makes 9 rolls.

To serve, ladle a little sauce on the plate and top with lasagna roll

Miranda's Mix Ups: Really good! Even the boys ate it. No mix ups. I"m a little worried about not following the "rules" :)


Found here

New Food Fridays #30 - Lemon Ginger Chicken

Made: March 28th 2011 - as part of the March Meals from the Web

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (1 1/4 lb)
1/2 cup Original Bisquick® mix
1/4 cup plain bread crumbs
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger root
1/2 cup water
3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Lemon Ginger Sauce
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon grated ginger root
1 drop yellow food color
Lemon slices, if desired

1 Between pieces of plastic wrap or waxed paper, place each chicken breast smooth side down; gently pound with flat side of meat mallet or rolling pin until about 1/4 inch thick.

2 In shallow bowl, mix Bisquick mix, bread crumbs, lemon peel and ginger root. Pour 1/2 cup water into another shallow bowl. Dip chicken into water, then coat with Bisquick mixture.

3 In 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook chicken in oil 8 to 10 minutes, turning once, until juice of chicken is clear when center of thickest part is cut (170°F).

4 Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, mix lemon juice, 1/4 cup water, the sugar, cornstarch, ginger root and food color. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened and bubbly. Pour sauce over chicken. Garnish with lemon slices.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used cut up pieces of chicken. The goal that day was to make the chicken go farther and it worked! Thank you Lord, as it was a Monday night get together and we were a bit low on funds and food :) It was so yummy! I didn't use the food colouring they suggest but was still great!


Found here

New Food Fridays #29 - Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Garlic and Lime

Made: March 24th 2011 - as part of the March Meals from the Web

2 pork tenderloins (3/4 lb each)
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons grated lime peel
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 Heat gas or charcoal grill. Cut small, 1/4- to 1/2-inch-deep slits in top of each pork tenderloin. Insert garlic slices into slits.

2 In small bowl, mix lime peel, oil, lime juice, honey, salt and pepper until well blended.

3 When grill is heated, brush pork tenderloins with lime mixture. Place pork on gas grill over medium heat or on charcoal grill over medium coals; cover grill. Cook 18 to 22 minutes, turning several times, until pork has slight blush of pink in center and meat thermometer inserted in center reads 160°F. Cut pork into slices to serve.

Miranda's Mix Ups: REALLY yummy. I made with more garlic and mine didn't look as "good" as theirs because I didn't do it on the BBQ. But still yummy!


Found here

New Food Fridays #28 - Chicken and Biscuits

Made: March 22nd 2011 - as part of the March Meals from the Web

2 1/4 cups Original Bisquick® mix
2/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/4 lb), cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 bag (12 oz) Green Giant ® Valley Fresh Steamers™ frozen mixed vegetables
1 container (10 oz) refrigerated Alfredo pasta sauce

1 Heat oven to 450°F. In medium bowl, stir Bisquick mix and milk until soft dough forms. On ungreased cookie sheet, drop dough by 6 spoonfuls. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown.

2 Meanwhile, in 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, thyme and pepper in oil, stirring occasionally, until chicken is no longer pink in center.

3 Stir in remaining ingredients; reduce heat to medium. Cover; cook 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until hot. Split biscuits; serve chicken mixture over biscuits

Miranda's Mix Ups: Didn't change anything! It was good, a nice change on a "normal" chicken pot pie!

No Picture Found In Files (I have found that for alot of them. Somehow I didn't take the photos or I've misplaced them on the computer and servers. Sorry :(

Found here

New Food Fridays #27 - Pasta with Asparagus

Made: March 21st 2011 - part of the March Meals from the Web

Pasta with Asparagus

1 lb thin asparagus, cut into 2" pieces (tough ends trimmed)
6 oz uncooked pasta such as Ronzoni Smart Taste or Dreamfields
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
salt and fresh cracked pepper
1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

In a large pot boil 4 cups water with salt. When boiling, add asparagus and cook 3-5 minutes, until tender crisp. Drain asparagus in colander reserving 1 cup liquid before draining.

Fill pot with salted water, cover and boil for pasta. When water boils cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.

Meanwhile, in a sauté pan heat olive oil. Add garlic and cook until golden, add asparagus, salt and pepper and sauté about 1-2 minutes, tossing with oil and garlic.

In a small bowl combine egg yolk, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 1/4 cup reserved asparagus liquid, salt and pepper. Mix well. After pasta is drained return to pot and mix with egg mixture. Cook on medium-low about 2 minutes, until sauce thickens and sticks to pasta. Toss in asparagus and mix well. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. If pasta seems too dry add more reserved liquid a tablespoon at a time.

Serve with additional grated cheese.

Miranda's Mix Ups: no cracked pepper in the house at the time so just used normal pepper I had. Really yummy! Would totally make this again (and have for lots of people!)


Found here

New Food Fridays #26 - Pork Chops in Country Onion Gravy

Made: March 10th 2011 - During the March Meals from the Web

4 boneless pork loin chops (about 1 pound)
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup beef broth
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup fat-free (skim) milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 Generously spray 12-­inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Cook pork chops in skillet about 6 minutes, turning once, until brown on both sides. Remove pork from skillet; cover to keep warm.

2 Reduce heat to medium. Add onions to skillet; cook 3 minutes. Stir in broth and pepper. Return pork to skillet; spoon onion mixture over pork. Cover tightly and simmer 12 minutes or until pork is no longer pink and meat thermometer inserted in center reads 160°.

3 Mix milk and flour in small bowl. Add to skillet; cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Miranda's Mix Ups: I didn't change anything. It was REALLY good!


Found here

New Food Fridays #32 - Thai Chicken and Noodle

Made: May 3rd 2011

20 chicken wings (about 4 lb)
1/4 cup dry sherry or chicken broth (from 32-oz carton)
1/4 cup oyster sauce
1/4 cup honey
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons chili sauce
2 tablespoons grated lime peel
4 medium green onions, chopped (1/4 cup)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 Cut each chicken wing at joints to make 3 pieces; discard tip. Cut off excess skin; discard.

2 In resealable heavy-duty food-storage plastic bag or large glass bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Add chicken; turn to coat with marinade. Seal bag or cover dish; refrigerate, turning once, at least 1 hour.

3 Heat gas or charcoal grill. Remove chicken from marinade; reserve marinade. Place chicken on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 45 to 60 minutes, brushing frequently with marinade and turning once, until juice of chicken is clear when thickest part is cut to bone (180°F). Discard any remaining marinade.

Miranda's Mix Ups: No BBQ and no oyster sauce :) It was good. I had it as Chicken breasts and served it over noodles! So yummy!

Sorry, no picture for this one!

Found : here

New Food Fridays are BACK!

I know I know it's been forever (well 7 month or so) but I"m hoping to get back into the swing of things. If you remember in January I said my goal of new meals was 100 new meals but now I'm not so sure!

Arnold and I are not entertaining people from the church on Monday nights so I have lost my test crowd, but hopefully I can work on something!

Here's to the last 3 months of "New Food Fridays"

New Food Friday #25 - Asian Glazed Drumsticks

Made March 7th as part of my March Meals from the Web.

Asian Glazed Drumsticks

8 medium chicken drumsticks, skin removed
olive oil spray (I used my Misto)
1 cup water
1 tbsp Sriracha hot sauce (more or less to taste)
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup soy sauce
4 tsp agave nectar (or sugar)
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp ginger, grated
2 tbsp chives or scallions, chopped
1 tsp sesame seeds

In a heavy large saucepan, brown chicken on high for 3-4 minutes with a little spray oil.

Add water, balsamic, soy sauce, agave, garlic, ginger, hot sauce and cook on high until liquid comes to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for about 20 minutes.

Remove cover and bring heat to high, allowing sauce to reduce down, about 8-10 minutes, until it becomes a thick glaze, turning chicken occasionally. (Keep an eye on glaze, you don't want it to burn when it start becoming thick)

Transfer chicken to a platter and pour glaze on top. Top with chives and sesame seeds and serve

Miranda's Mix Ups: I used chicken breasts instead of drumsticks and no hot sauce!


Where you can find it: Asian Glazed Drumsticks at Skinnytaste

Help a Girl out, would ya?

First I want to start this post by saying this is NOT a regular thing. This is something I have prayed about and taken my time before jumping into this post.

That being said please read on:

I "met" Cheryl online when we move to Toronto. A mutual friend of ours, Sarah, set us up. I had moved here for Arnold's job from Sarnia and Cheryl had moved her for her husbands job from out east. We both didn't know anyone and began getting to know each other. Her family of 3 (at the time) are wonderful loving people. So fantastic! While it did take us a while to get together we eventually did and hung out. Her daughter Lauren was so cute!

The year I became a Doula (2008) Cheryl told me she was pregnant! I was super excited for her and partly excited because I would have a new client. She was due way later that year and I was thrilled to have her on my "1 of 3" list. As the pregnancy wen on something went "wrong". Cheryl had Jillian before she was fully cooked, so to speak.

It was really rough on them as a family. Having Jillian at the hospital, Cheryl there as much as she could, her husband, Adam, working and Lauren all over. Some of us, including me, were lucky enough to have Lauren come and visit our houses while Mama was in the hospital before and after birth.

I've been keeping tabs on Cheryl and her family these past 3 years and have seen the love and determination she has for her family. Jillian has been been diagnosed with "stic diplegia cerebral palsy". I'm still not 100% sure what it means but I *DO* know it means she has trouble walking right now.

Her insurance company has denied her request for Botox injections to help Jillian walk. Jillian and her family were granted with a gift the last time this was done, about 3 months ago, and it worked, so well! There are great videos of Jillian walking shortly after her first treatment. But to insure that she can continue to walk she needs these (just over $1000.00) injections every 3 months. That's ALOT of cash.

While Cheryl fights with her insurance company she is left with 2 options. Jillians' appointment on the 21st of September (next week) will either be the date for the injections (which cost $1000.00) or will have to cancel. This means walking or not walking for Jillian right now.

I would like to give you a link to a best friend of Cheryl who has started something up for helping her raise the money. Asking for money is NOT a Cheryl thing (or a me thing) but she needs it to help her daughter. Please check out Rhea's "Oh Rheally" blog about Jillian's auction.

I will keep you updated when I know more.

For those wondering, Cheryl's blog can be found here at Beautiful Side of Hectic

Thanks for reading. If nothing else please pray for this family as they try to reach their goal and for their daily lives.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Chicken Soup With Rice

2 years ago Kyler was in JK. It was only a few weeks into school but it was the beginning of Kyler's "I can read" books. We would go over his poems, and songs and review them during the weekend.

Today while Quinton was getting out his lunch he started to say "paddle once, paddle twice, chicken soup and rice". I laughted because it was perfect! I missed that song/poem! It's great to have it going on again!

For those of you who don't know what it is here's how it goes:

In January it's so nice
While slipping on the sliding ice
To sip hot chicken soup with rice
Sipping once, sipping twice
Sipping chicken soup with rice

In February it will be
My snowman's anniversary
With cake for him and soup for me!
Happy once, happy twice
Happy chicken soup with rice

In March the wind blows down the door
And spills my soup upon the floor
It laps it up and roars for more
Blowing once, blowing twice
Blowing chicken soup with rice

In April I will go away
To far off Spain or old Bombay
And dream about hot soup all day
Oh, my, oh, once, oh, my, oh, twice
Oh, my, oh, chicken soup with rice

In May I truly think it best
To be a robin lightly dressed
Concocting soup inside my nest
Mix it once, mix it twice
Mix that chicken soup with rice

In June I saw a charming group
Of roses all begin to droop
I pepped them up with chicken soup!
Sprinkle once, sprinkle twice
Sprinkle chicken soup with rice

In July I'll take a peep
Into the cool and fishy deep
Where chicken soup is selling cheap
Selling once, selling twice
Selling chicken soup with rice

In August it will be so hot
I will become a cooking pot
Cooking soup of course-why not?
Cooking once, cooking twice
Cooking chicken soup with rice

In September, for a while
I will ride a crocodile
Down the chicken soup-y Nile
Paddle once, paddle twice
Paddle chicken soup with rice

In October I'll be host
To witches, goblins and a ghost
I'll serve them chicken soup on toast
Whoopy once, whoopy twice
Whoopy chicken soup with rice

In November's gusty gale I will flop my flippy tail
And spout hot soup-I'll be a whale!
Spouting once, spouting twice
Spouting chicken soup with rice

In December I will be
A baubled, bangled Christmas tree
With soup bowls draped all over me
Merry once, merry twice
Merry chicken soup with rice

I told you once, I told you twice
All seasons of the year are nice
For eating chicken soup with rice

"We" are learning September again!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Quinton's First Day of School!!

On Friday my baby went to school. My littlest baby went to school! Can you believe it? I"m just in shock how much he has grown. While he did have his ups and downs on his first day he did well and is excited to go back on Monday.

I packed him a snack because the snack program doesn't start until Monday but he didn't get to eat it and was so sad. Instead he had a snack that Mr. Brown had ready for him. No big deal right? Wrong! He wanted to eat his own snack and that made him so sad. Then he wanted to play somewhere but there were already 3 kids playing there and was upset for a few seconds until Mr. Brown and Mrs. F found the computers to be open so there he went and was happy as could be.

Today he drew a "dragon" for his first day of school picture. If you ask him it's a rainbow t-rex dragon with an X through him! I'm excited to see what it looks like when we go into the classroom. He also read 2 books. One about a bear going to school and one about a bunny going to school. He really liked those books. He also sang "O Canada" today and in the hall sang "Skinamarinky dinky dink I love you" song and he liked that one.

All in all a great day.

Here is our by the house photos:















Walking to school:





At School:



Coming out of the school after his first day: