Monday, October 31, 2011

what's been cooking. literally.

I thought I'd share a few delicious recipes I've stumbled upon during the past few weeks, as well as a few favorite recipes I revisit from time to time.

When my parents were visiting a few weeks ago, I got up early, one morning, and whipped up this cream cheese coffee cake.  It took longer than I had expected to "throw together", but it was worth the effort.  We enjoyed it for several days, snacking on it for breakfast and with an afternoon cup of coffee/tea.  I even tossed a few left over pieces into the freezer.  (It freezes well, fyi!)

 These little bacon, egg, and toast cups were really savory, and delightful.  I made these, as well, when my parents were here.  They were a hit!  Plus they are so cute.  And they reheat really well the following morning.  I did tweak the recipe a smidge by using refrigerated buttermilk biscuits, instead of bread.

I love root beer.  I love pulled pork.  So when I saw this recipe for root beer pulled pork, I knew I had to give it a go.   It's made in the crock-pot, so it's uber easy.  And tasty!  I've made it twice so far - once with regular root beer, once with diet Dr. Pepper.  Surprisingly, the diet soda batch turned out just as good as the root beer!

These mini shepherd's pies are fun to make, and fun to eat.  Especially if you look at them as meat and potato cupcakes.  Haha!  These freeze and reheat really well; they've become a new staple here at our house.  I'll be whipping up another batch of them later this week and throwing the leftovers in the freezer to pull out for an easy dinner in the future.  I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy these.

I've made this recipe (apple-sausage rigatoni) before, but I don't make it too often because it's not exactly friendly to the waistline.  (Heavy cream is involved.)  A few times a year, maybe.  But it's suuuuper yummy.  AND easy.  It's a great way to use up a few apples, too, if you've gone apple picking this season.

This is one of my favorite soups.  The weather is certainly feeling like Fall these days, so a pot of healthy sausage and spinach soup on the stove is a perfect way to round out the day.

We bought a bread maker a few days ago, and we've already enjoyed half of our first loaf.  NOTHING beats the smell of fresh baked bread.  That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but in the moment, it's the best thing in the world.

The morning after we made our first loaf, we made some French toast from that fresh bread.  It was a lovely way to start the day.

Have you tried any recipes, lately, that you'll be hanging onto?  It's a great feeling to go out on a limb to try a new recipe and have nothing but success (and happy taste buds).  Or do you have any beloved favorites that you make regularly?  A good go-to recipe is a beautiful thing.

Hope you're enjoying some Fall weather where you are!  We certainly are!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

grandma shoots a gun

Yea.  My mom shot a gun for the first time, EVER, when she was out here.  Actually, she shot four different guns.  My dad shot a gun for the first time since he was in the army.  He's still got it.

Travis was so excited to take my parents to the range.  He was giddy.  Like a kid on Christmas Eve.  That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but not by much.  Boys and guns.  What's the deal?

Anyways, one morning, we spent a few hours at the range.
We shot guns.
We took pictures of us shooting guns.
Good times.
Memories made.

my parents.  dad posing sternly.

this would have been way cuter if I took out my ear plugs.

me, showing my mom how to hold, aim, and shoot a gun.  note her expression.

mom's turn.  yikes.

he's a natural.

safety first!

check out that tongue!

me and Dad, shooting zombies.

"get some!  get some!!!"  (Sean, if you happen to be reading this, that's for you ;)


this picture CRACKS ME UP

look out.  that's my mom with an AK-47.

iphone family picture

at the park with grandma & grandpa

Last week, my parents were here visiting.  They got lots of Callan time, which I know they cherish (and wish they had more of).
We really enjoyed our time together - we are missing them this week as we adjust back to our normal routine and quiet house.

I'm keeping busy by prepping and planning for Callan's first birthday party, which is just a few short weeks away!
20 days, to be exact.

Here are a few photos from a park outing we took one afternoon.
The weather was beautiful and it was so heart-warming to watch Callan and my parents play and interact on the playground.  Love.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

it must be Fall

My Fall wreath is finally up on the front door.

And we picked up some mums over the weekend.  I got them planted in pots on Monday.  They have yet to bloom.  They're pink.  And I'm totally excited about that.  They'll add a lovely bit of color to the front of the house.

I'm ready for cooloer temperatures to settle in and for leaves to start a-changing.  That's when it will really start to feel like Fall.

In the meantime, open windows welcome the fresh morning air, and autumn scented candles fill the kitchen and living room with a wonderful, Fall fragrance.