June 25, 2012

Keeping it real.

Over the weekend, my husband and I celebrated 5 years of marriage. It doesn't seem like it's been that long but here we are. My, how time flies! One thing is for sure, I'm more in love with this man today than the day we said "I do".
Okay, okay, enough with the mushy stuff. lol
Since we don't have a sitter yet, (hello, what's wrong with us?!) we went out for dinner as a family.
It was nice just being together, and really anytime I don't have to do the clean up after a meal is the best.

A stop a Target on the way home to make a return ended with getting the boys a little something. It's funny how things change when you have little ones. Seeing their excited faces all the way through the store was pretty great. They are still big fans of Disney's Jungle Junction. It was late when we arrived home but we still put it together and the boys played for a bit before going to bed. Best way to end the day. Makes my heart happy.

On a different note................................................
Just keeping it real. This is what the boys' room looks like at the end of the day.

Most days it's much worse than this. I just wanted to point out that I'm not perfect my any stretch of the imagination. My home gets messy too. I think it's important to remember that most our glimpses into other's lives are of their highlights. This is real life, I clean up a lot and am fairly organized but things get out of place and we do have to clean just like everyone else.

Anyway, we're off and running this Monday morning.

Make today great, it'll never be here again! : )

June 22, 2012

at our house lately.....

Scrapbooking has been on my mind.
Today I finally put a couple pages together.

these photos are from September 2010

My first basil plant. I'm loving the fragrant scent.

With some of my fresh basil I made a "basil simple syrup". I added a spoonful or two to some strawberry lemonade, delicious.

We've lived here almost a year and I'm still working on getting art on the walls. oh, well.
This is my most recent addition.

It's good to be silly!

Tomorrow my husband and I are celebrating our 5 year anniversary.
5 years!
That's pretty awesome! : )

Have a great weekend!

June 19, 2012

happy dad's day!

First, I'd like to announce that my wonderful husband is the most amazing dad to our boys.
To say that they adore him, is kind of an understatement. He is their favorite person, their buddy, the tickle monster, the sometimes re-director, their comforter, and YouTube video watching pal.
So, to celebrate this amazing man, husband, and dad we..........

Let him sleep in til about 10am.

Took him out for pizza at Red Zep.

His choice for activities.....kicking the soccer ball around our local college campus. (they have some seriously great fields)

Long afternoon nap.

I made herbed shrimp pasta for dinner.

Then we ended the evening with dessert (homemade strawberry shortcake) on our back porch.

It was a pretty great day! I think he enjoyed just being able to spend the day together.
The feeling is mutual. ;o)

Some of my favorite photos from the day:

Hope you had a great weekend!

June 16, 2012

Nutella Lovers

Recently I came across a recipe using Nutella in banana bread and knew I needed to try it out.
"Banana Nutella Muffins w/ Reeses Peanut Butter Chips" Oh, my gosh! www.iheartnaptime.net, what a great combo to put together. You can find Jamielyn's original recipe here.

Because I was out of sour cream I needed to improvise with what I had.
I had some cream cheese so, I adapted my "go to" banana bread recipe with a few add-ins.
Here's what I came up with:

My version of "Banana Nutella Muffins"

6 T. butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
3/4 c. white sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 med., ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. Reeses peanut butter baking chips
1 tsp. Nutella spread per muffin

With an electric mixer beat butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and beat just until combined. Mix in egg. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, mix until combined. Stir in mashed bananas and vanilla. Gently fold in peanut butter chips. Fill a lined muffin cups 3/4 of the way full. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Transfer to wire rack to cool. While still warm top each muffin with a tsp. of Nutella. Let them cool a bit and try not to eat to many. Ha!

Seriously, folks, these are scrumptious! It you're a fan of the delicious hazelnut spread, they are a must try. Go on, what are you waiting for! ; )

June 14, 2012

Random thoughts......

First, I heart summer lunches. Just saying. *wink*

Jimmy Fallon is pretty awesome! I can't help loving what I've heard from his new remix with various artists. Love.

My favorite video right now.

If I had a twitter account.

#roughday #weirdcravings #toomuchjimmyfallon

Finished a custom order for a camera strap cover. This one is called "Lavender Skies".

Loving how this boy will explain in gibberish how he had the best time somewhere. Melts my heart!

Loving how this boy says "duck" for duck, duck, goose and calls a bouncy ball,  "bull". The sweetest!


June 9, 2012

Announcing the winner from our givaway & a recipe

Time to celebrate, the contest is over.

Honesty moment: I have not felt this stressed about anything in a while. lol
Oh, the anticipation! Ha!

Without further adieu, the winner for the most referrals is Holly Cambers.

Congratulations, Holly! I just sent you an email with your winnings, a $15 gift certificate to www.simpleoctober.etsy.com.

Stay tuned, I'm already thinking about the next giveaway. Oh, fun!


Chicken & rice is one of my husband's favorite meals. I love it because it's easy, filling, and pretty much a great comfort food. Especially on rainy nights stuck indoors.

Here's the recipe in case you're in need of some comfort food yourself.

Baked Chicken & Rice

6 T. butter
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp. salt
2 1/4 c. milk
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
3 c. cooked chicken, chopped
2 1/4 c. cooked rice (1 c. uncooked)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large saucepan. Stir in flour and salt to make a roux. Cook over med. heat, stirring constantly until bubbly, remove from heat. Stir in milk and broth, return to stove top. Bring mixture to a boil while stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in chicken and cooked rice. Pour into an ungreased 13"x9" baking dish.
Bake uncovered for 40 - 45 minutes. Serve with your favorite veggies. Enjoy!

June 6, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

I'm trying something new..........wordless wednesday.

June 5, 2012

We're having a giveaway!!!

Yay! Hip hip hooray, we're having a giveaway!

I started a facebook page for my etsy shop, Simple October, and am up 24 "likes". That's pretty great but I'm sure we can reach 50 "likes". That would be awesome!
Let's have a contest to see who can get the most referred "likes".
Get your friends and family to "like" Simple October's facebook page and have them comment that you sent them.
The person with the most "likes" will receive a $15.00 gift certificate to www.simpleoctober.etsy.com.

Contest ends 9:00 AM on Saturday, June 9th. I'll announce the winner that afternoon.

I'm so excited about this contest. It's our first one, after all!
Good luck everyone!

Go to www.facebook.com/SimpleOctober !

June 2, 2012


When company comes I try to make sure I spoil them with delicious things to eat.

So, when my parents and five siblings came for a visit this week, I tried to pull out all the stops.
Just so you know, eating isn't the only thing we do when we're together but it is a big part of our time.
With that many people you have to get creative with your menu.

Fresh baked bread. It went perfect with the creamy chicken and wild rice soup I made for dinner.
 (sorry, no pics of the soup)

Cheesecake for dessert. I've talked about this recipe before over here. So good!

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
My youngest sister loves them the most. I always make them just for her.

Pasta Salad, watermelon, and the last of the bread for lunch.

Joe's Crab Shack one night. My, they are a good looking bunch. :o)

We were able to celebrate my youngest brother's birthday while they were here.
He turned 17!
Oh my gosh! I don't know when this happened.
We had fajita chicken/cheese quesadillas with tortilla chips and homemade salsa. (sorry, no pic)
Chocolate chip cupcakes were a big hit. (just don't think about how much butter is in there) lol

Happy Birthday, Bill! We love you!

Sad they had to leave so soon but we had tons of fun having them all here.
Come over again very soon!