Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It’s a Souper Tuesday!


I realized I never told all of you about our surprise from Santa that was under our tree when we returned from our Thanksgiving Travels.  Meet “Elfie!”  "Elfie is our Elf on the Shelf.  Have you heard of this phenomenon that seems to be sweeping the nation?  (I am not sure if these are international yet or not.  Anyway, Elfie is one of Santa’s helpers.  He’s hanging around, keeping an eye on Sadie to see if she’s being naughty or nice.  Elfie brought a book with him to explain his job.  Each night he reports back to Santa.  It’s been fun seeing where Elfie will pop up.  This morning, he was sitting on our baker’s rack.

Today I had a nice surprise.  It was “Soup Day” in the cafeteria.  Soup and grilled cheese is the BEST meal.  Even though this soup was a tad on the greasy side, it was still good. 



I had already planned to make soup for dinner tonight, too: Taco Soup.  This is the easiest soup to make, and it is so delicious!  Especially when the weather is chilly and rainy. 

Taco Soup:

1 lb. lean (93 or 96% Lean) ground beef

1 medium onion, chopped

1 taco seasoning packet

1 can black beans (undrained)

1 can kidney beans (undrained)

1 can “Mexicorn” or corn with Mexican flavoring

1 can diced tomatoes

1 can Ro-Tel (mild or regular)

optional: baked tortilla chips, shredded cheese, light sour cream (for topping)

To make:

Brown beef with onions.  When beef is completely cooked, the onions will be ready, too.  Then add all cans of beans and veggies, seasoning packet, and a 14.5 oz. can of water.  (Just use one of the beans cans.)  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  Simmer 15-20 minutes.  Serve hot, topped with crushed tortilla chips, cheese, or sour cream.  (Or all three!!!)

Finished product…




Monday, November 29, 2010

Oatmeal-Apple-Cinnamon Snack Mix

Over the Thanksgiving break, I was able to spend lots of time with my family.  I would say about 80% of our time was spent eating!  (Maybe not QUITE that much... but a LOT, for sure!)  I am going to be paying for that this week-- I am going to have to Zumba my tail off! 

But I do want to share a delicious snack mix with you that my family has enjoyed all weekend!

This is a recipe that my sister got from someone who got it from someone who probably got it from someone else, so I don't know the exact name.  I am going to call it "Oatmeal-Apple-Cinnamon Snack Mix." 

Now normally, I am a person who prefers a salty snack mix.  However, I will make an exception for this.  With the apples and cranberries, it is perfect for this time of year and just look at how PRETTY it is!

Here is the recipe from my sister, Meredith:

Recipe (mix together dry ingredients): 1 box Quaker Oatmeal Squares (found on cereal isle), 1 bag Craisins, 1 bag of Sunmaid (or any brand) dried apple chips, 2 cups walnuts.  In a separate bowl mix: 4 tsp cinnamon, 1 cup sugar and 1 stick melted butter.  Pour the wet ingredients on top of the dry ingredients.  I use my hands to mix it all together well.  Put in air tight container and put in the refrigerator for 2+ hours (I usually do it overnight).  Ready to serve!

Thanks, Meredith!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Pretty Nice Little Saturday…

We started Saturday with a special family trip to one of our favorite Greenville breakfast spots… Stax’s Restaurant!  If you live near Greenville and haven’t been… you need to try it!

Of course, we started with coffee…


I decided on a ham, egg, and cheese sandwich with home fries.

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Then we all decided that since the weather was absolutely beautiful, we would head out to Furman University.  Furman has a beautiful campus.  Lots of people go out to enjoy their path around the lake. 

Sadie couldn’t wait to get there and feed the ducks!

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Then she and Poppy tried to climb up the clock tower, but it was roped off.  They couldn’t get to the “landing.”

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We had some fun performing at this cool amphitheater.  Here are Leenie and Poppy waving to the crowd!


The weather was beautiful, and there were some amazing plants and flowers.  Aren’t these berries cool?  I think these photos turned out amazing.  I kind of want to have them framed!

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It was fun to enjoy the cool fall weather and the gorgeous sunny day.

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And we even were able to climb some trees and practice our tightrope-walking skills!

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What an amazing day. 

Then later that night, we got ready for the Clemson vs. USC game.  For those of you who aren’t in South Carolina, this is a HUGE football game.  These two schools have been rivals for many years.  There is always a lot of trash talk leading up to this game. 

Meredith, David, Adrienne, Paul, Ryan, and I headed downtown to Wild Wing to watch the game. 

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And even though we had been eating all weekend, we snacked on some “bar food” while we watched…


mozzarella sticks…


and wings of course!

And… the Gamecocks won… which made everyone happy…well…except for David.  He went to Clemson, so he wasn’t so happy…

Now, we’re finally home… and it’s nice to be home, but we’re missing everyone.  However, something exciting happened!  Santa left a special present under our tree while we were gone!  Can anyone guess what he left us?????

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Two Thanksgivings...

When Ryan and I got married, of course, we were blessed with all the wonderful gifts of being married... including having TWO Thanksgivings.

Thanksgiving number one...
 My homemade mashed potatoes...
 Ryan's mom's fried okra (delicious!!!  You'll be seeing this recipe soon.)
 Thanksgiving number two!
 My mom's homemade name tags...
 floral arrangements
 pretty ribbon for napkin rings...
 and some gratuitous food shots...

Boy do I need to get back to Zumba!