Thursday, February 27, 2014

My Favorite Crock Pot Meals - Part 1

I love to make crock pot meals, they are perfect for any day, but especially when you wont have time later to whip up dinner.  This is the first post in a series I will call "My Favorite Crock Pot Meals"

I was given this recipe years ago by a friend who made it for me. It is ALWAYS a hit, no matter who I am serving.

Crock Pot Swiss Chicken and Stuffing

Grease a large crock pot before adding ingredients
Put in 6-8 boneless skinless chicken breasts ( I have also used boneless skinless chicken thighs and strips)
Use 1 can cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup to generously coat the top of each piece of chicken
Put Swiss cheese slices over the top of the chicken until it is covered ( I like to use almost a 1/2 pound)
Then add 2 cups seasoned stuffing right over the top
Melt 1 cup of real butter and pour over stuffing
Cook on high heat for 4-6 hours or low heat for 6-8 hours (my crock pot is not a very hot temp crock pot, so you may need to adjust your cook time or temp to make this recipe work in your crock pot)

Serve with a side of veggies
Serves 4-6

Tips: If your chicken meal turns out too dry try adjusting temp or cook time, or add 1/2 cup milk in with your butter to see if that helps.

Hope that you enjoy this recipe as much as we do!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Date Night Ideas That Don't Include a Babysitter

Most every Saturday night my husband and I have date night. We take turns coming up with ideas. We usually have a great time and sometimes things get a little interesting or weird. Other times our date ideas were complete flops, ha ha! But it doesn't matter what we do as long as we make time to spend with each other. We usually wait until we put the kids to bed at 7 pm to start our date. That way we don't have to go anywhere and we do not need a babysitter. So here are some of our date night ideas. Hopefully this will inspire you to have date night with your spouse too.

#1- Cook a meal together. It is always the best to try something you have never tried making before, or something that is exotic or out of the norm for dinner.
Dinners we have made together: sushi, jambalaya, fish tacos...(that's all I can remember, we make sushi all of the time, it is so fun, and we take turns making each roll :)

#2 - Pizza & cookie art. You could split these and make them on separate date nights. I am just the type that likes desert after dinner. I have done this a few different ways, depending on how much time you have. You could buy a take and bake cheese pizza to save time or make your own pizza at home. Then you get the toppings you like and save them until you are ready to create your art. I like to take turns putting on the toppings and then that is when the art happens. To make cookie art you could use sugar cookie dough or make your own chocolate chip cookie dough without the chocolate chips. Gather your cookie decorating supplies and start creating. I like to do chocolate chip cookie art because you can decorate it while your pizza is baking and then pop it in the oven while you are enjoying your pizza. Sugar cookie would be baked first then start decorating. This is a go to date night idea that is easy and so much fun to do with your spouse!

#3 - Paint watercolors. This is another go to date idea. We usually already have watercolors and paintbrushes, but if you don't they are inexpensive. We usually pick a theme and then paint our own watercolor. We have even framed some of ours...

#4 - Clay sculptures. This is such a fun idea, you could even use play dough. I remember the first time we did this, we went to Texas Roadhouse (our favorite place to eat) and made sculptures after dinner. It was so silly, and a little embarrassing, but it was a lot of fun. One idea for a sculpture could be to sculpt something that reminds you of your spouse.  Things could get really interesting!

#5 - Homemade Root Beer Floats, we spend a quiet evening just enjoying each others company while we treat ourselves, we have also shared a pint of Ben and Jerry's ice cream (sometimes 2)...yes! it can be that simple, just spend time together.

#6 - Get some of your favorite candies and snack food and watch a movie together.

#7 - Strike up a an evening of interesting conversation by asking your spouse about themselves. Not that you don't already know a lot about them, just try to think up questions, ahead of time, of things you don't know about them. You could also have an evening of setting goals together and asking questions about your husband's vision for the future. I really enjoy this kind of date. Sometimes my husband and I get a little disconnected and this kind of sweet conversation brings us back together and helps me to help him reach his goals.

#8 - We really like origami. You can find a bunch of tutorials online to show you how to make hundreds of different origami creations. Beware of some of the more difficult ones, if you are a beginner, it can get frustrating and take the fun out of your special night, wink wink...

#9 - Play a fun board game together. My favorites are Scrabble, card games, Battleship, and even games from the dollar store. Add a take out dinner or snack food to add to the fun.

#10 - Fear factor date night...need I say more. Get creative and get ready for a night of laughing and ridiculous faces. Always video tape dates like these.

#11 - Minute to win it. I guess there is a show called minute to win it. I have never seen it, but the little competitive games make for a fantastic date night of silly fun. Just type minute to win it into Google or you tube and pick your favorites. This would also make a really fun party or double date.

#12 - Go on a hike and bring the kids along. Plan a picnic and it turns into the perfect family date.

Hope you enjoy trying some of these ideas with your spouse. And if you have date night ideas, I am always looking for more, so please leave a comment with your suggestions.

Happy Faces


so much help!

broken arm #2


Valentine's from Nana & Popi

chocolate feast

hey mom, take our picture!