Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Black Bean Burgers

I made Black Bean Burgers for lunch today.  In my continuing quest to better my diet I am trying to cut out some red meat.  Thee are a hybrid of several black bean burgers I've either had in restaurants or recipes I've found over the years. 

The burger ingredients:

2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 teas salt
1 teas black pepper
1/2 teas garlic powder
1 1/2 teas chives
1/2 teas paprika
1/8 teas cayenne pepper
1 chopped red pepper
1/2 diced onion
1 teas lime juice
1 egg

In a food processor blend 1 can of beans with egg, salt, pepper, garlic powder, chives, paprika, cayenne pepper and lime juice until blended.  Place in mixing bowl and add second can of beans, chopped red pepper, onion and bread crumbs.  Mix thoroughly and form into 4 patties.  

Cook on a lightly sprayed grill pan.
I like my onion and pepper fairly big, chunks really. 
I usually make a double batch and freeze the unused patties.  Place between wax paper sheets and freeze.

I serve my burgers with melted cheddar cheese on top, Kraft Sandwich Shop Mayo Garlic and Herb, and romaine lettuce.  So yummy!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Crochet Circles

I am laid up with a horrible pulled muscle in my back and hip and so the baby clothes quilt I'm working on finishing has been set aside for a few days in favor of lying around on a heating pad.  You can only watch so much daytime TV before your mind starts to go to ugly places you know?  So I went through my yarn stash and put these three colors  together.  A nice bright aqua, a baby green and a nice neutral olive.  A couple of DVD's later I have all these nice little circles. I still have a little bit of each color so I am going to just keeping making until I run out.  Since my yarn stash is pretty small right now I don't have anything in enough quantity for an edge color to bring them all together.  But hopefully by the weekend I'll be back to rights and can get to the store to restock.  Heaven forbid I run out of yarn.  That just wouldn't do. 

Leaning tower of circles

A plate full of circles

The cloudy weather is messing with the true colors of that aqua. 

I need a little fairy to come and weave in all my ends while I take a nap.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Sweet Sixteen

We celebrated Madison on Monday with Shrimp Scampi for dinner and Cake Pops for dessert.  A quiet celebration of 16 years just the way she wanted... with family at home.  This was my first time to make cake pops.  I used chocolate cake mix, milk chocolate icing and aqua candy melts on the outside.  

Monday, February 20, 2012

Munchkin Hat

{Captures by Kelly Photography}

My friend is just starting out in the newborn/chldren's photography business and I made her some little hats to use.  I showed you the pink munchkin hat back here.   This is the little boy version in light blue and white.  Isn't it cute on this little 5 day old?


Sunday, February 19, 2012


The day I have been dreading has arrived. I feel like tonight she will go to bed still a child of 15.  And tomorrow she's going to wake up a grown up 16.  This week has been a big one.  Drivers Ed.  Me standing and watching her drive the car into the driveway after going to the DMV for her learners permit, all excited because she likes her picture (who likes their DMV picture??)     We had planned a big weekend trip into Dallas with friends for shopping and an overnight stay but a while back she decided she wanted to just spend the weekend with us.  Yesterday she and I went shopping, had great Mexican food and enjoyed some time together.  I am certainly not complaining about her choice. 
Some of the celebrating has been put on hold today due to my father being hospitalized but she has gotten her presents all a day early and tomorrow night there will be cake or cake pops (depending on how ambitious I get tomorrow). 
She is still such a great kid.  I am so blessed. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Cake Mix Cookies

I know I'm the last one to this party but I tried Cake Mix Cookies for the first time this past weekend.  How easy were they?  I mean really.... cake mix, oil and eggs and about 2 seconds of mixing.  And they tasted good too.  I rolled the batter into little balls and then into powdered sugar.  Little crinkle cookies.   I have a vanilla cake mix and some chocolate chips I am going to try this week.   

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Fingerless Mittens

 Wanted some new fingerless mitts for this new cold spell this week.  An hour and some red and light blue yarn was all I needed for a quick Monday morning project.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Millie Blanket

I finished the scrappy granny square baby blanket I mentioned a while back.  I had been making little granny squares along the way thinking they would morph into something eventually.  They decided they wanted to be a baby blanket!  Edged with white and put together they were nice but a little double border of red and green finished it off nicely. 

Another successful use of all those little balls of leftover yarn.

It is a nice baby sized 34" square.

It is here. 

Linking up over here for Make Something Mondays.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

It was really cold here this weekend and I wanted to have some soup waiting in the crock pot.  So I took several different Chicken Tortilla Soup recipes I had bookmarked and combined them into something I thought we would like.  It turned out exactly how I wanted.  Not too spicy for the kids but just right for us adults.  The flavors are deep and it was perfect for warming us up on a cold night.

**I don't profess to have any revolutionary recipes on here.  I am sure everyone has some of the same ideas and recipes.  I just put them here so that I know where to find them when I am looking for them again.

1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 can enchilada sauce
1 can Rotel
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 medium onion, diced
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can kernel corn
1 can chicken broth
2 teas. taco seasoning mix
1 teas crushed bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in crock pot. Cook for 4-6 hours on high. Serve with lime wedges, shredded cheese, sour cream and tortilla strips.

I can't wait to have leftovers tomorrow for lunch!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Mild Winter

{New soccer cleats and practice ball ready for the season to start}

Here in Texas we haven't seen much of old man winter!  It has been in the 60's and 70's most every day.  We ae keeping busy with the usual stuff plus a couple of extra things here and there.

*Cullen and Madison are both starting Spring soccer soon.
*Madison starts Drivers Ed in a couple of weeks.  Ugh!
*We are planning a major trip to Ikea for new organizational furniture for Cullen's room.  The Legos and action figures are going to take over while we sleep if we don't corral them.
*The other day I took my car in for some repairs.  This car has been a major pain since we bought it.  Seems to break down on a regular basis and is totally unreliable.   We needed a reliable car but I had been putting it off!  So a trip to the dealership for repairs at 7:30 Tuesday morning turned into me driving a new car home at 1 that afternoon.  Now we have a reliable car!  Sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and make a decision!
*I am trying to think of something fun to do over Spring Break that's close to home and cheap.
*I have a bunch of new sewing/crochet things to show you.  I have been busy!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Chicken Enchilada Pasta Bake

I was really in the mood for some of my favorite Sour Cream Chicken Encliladas.  But not having any flour tortillas in the house and not willing to go out in the rain to get some, I had to improvise for dinner last night.  I had bought some of the new (to our area) White Queso Velvetta and wanted to try it in something.  What I came up with turned out to be a huge hit with everyone.   So, I figured I had better get it down somewhere so I can repeat it later.   

Chicken Enchilada Pasta Bake

2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
1 cup chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can rotel, drained
8 oz. sour cream
16 oz. white queso Velvetta, cut into cubes
1/2 teas. Cilantro
1/2 teas. chopped chives
1/4 onion, chopped
1 box Rotini pasta, boiled
2 cups shredded mexican cheese or Monterey Jack

Boil pasta.  While that is cooking, in a large skillet,  combine soup, sour cream, rotel, and broth. Bring to a simmer. Add Velvetta cubes and herbs.  Simmer while stirring to melt cheese.  Add chicken and onion. 

To drained pasta add sauce. 
Put into casserole dish and top with shredded cheese.  Cover with foil and cook for 35 minutes at 375 degrees or until bubbly.  Take foil off for last 5-7 minutes.

Friday, February 3, 2012


A wonderful friend gave me a Michael's gift card for helping her out with some babysitting lately.  So, I decided to get something I've had my eye on for awhile.  A Smash book and some of the accompanying supplies.  I can't wait to dig in and start "smashing" my book.  If you aren't familiar with this fairly new product, here's a blog with products and ideas.

I also got this magazine, Where Women Create.  I love seeing how others organize their studios. 

Overall, a great trip to Michael's!