Thursday, February 25, 2010

Spring Consignment Sales! YAY!

Alrighty! I am pleased to share that it is that time of year again... HUGE child consignment sales are upon us! I L-O-V-E shopping for the boys at these mother load sales. It makes me feel quite smart to be saving big bucks on cute clothing, and it tends to be more satisfying than shopping for myself (As it all looks sweet on my boys which is a far cry from my own personal shopping experiences.) So all you thrifty chics...SAVE THE DATES, and I'll meet ya there. :)

Sweet Weepeets
Chattanooga, TN

Feb 27 10am-5pm
Feb 28 10am-6pm
March 1-4 10am-7pm
March 5 10am-5pm
March 6 (1/2 price sale) 10am-5pm

(423) 802-5563
(423) 595-0348
email this sale

off Gunbarrel Rd between Lowe's & Home Depot - former Boater's World
7425 Commons Blvd

All About Kids
Hixson, TN

March 1 10am-7pm
March 2-5 10am-6pm
March 6 (1/2 price sale) 8am-2pm

Highland Plaza
Hixson Pike & Ashland Terrace
Next to Tuesday Morning

Kids Zone Sale
Chattanooga, TN

March 8 9am-7pm
March 9-12 10am-6pm
March 13 (1/2 price sale) 9am-3pm

(423) 593-0259

Gateway Mall
4031 Cloud Springs Rd

Jack and Jill Kid's Sale

Chattanooga, TN

March 15 10am-8pm
March 16-19 10am-7pm
March 20 (1/2 price sale) 10am-6pm

(706) 965-2101

5770 Brainerd Rd
Brainerd Village Center

Just Between

Chattanooga, TN

March 21 noon-7pm
March 22-26 10am-7pm
March 27 (1/2 price sale) 10am-4pm

(423) 364-6097

Camp Jordan Arena
East Ridge, TN

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

Andre's parents came in tonight, and tomorrow night I will be cooking for them. Usually this is Andre's job since he is the resident cook. However, I do have a few goodies hidden in my repertoire, and homemade chicken pot pie is one of them. I pulled out the old recipe, and remembered I actually had a delicious looking photo I took the first time I made it. This recipe is easy, and tastes divine.


1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
2 Tbsp. KRAFT Zesty Italian Dressing
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup
1/4 lb. (4 oz.) VELVEETA Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 sheet frozen puff pastry (1/2 of 17.3-oz. pkg.), thawed
1 egg, beaten


HEAT oven to 400ºF. Cook and stir chicken in dressing in large skillet on medium heat 5 min. or until done. Stir in vegetables and soup. Spoon into greased 9-inch square baking dish; top with VELVEETA.

UNFOLD pastry sheet; place over chicken mixture. Fold under edges of pastry; press onto top of baking dish to seal. Brush pastry with egg. Cut several slits in pastry to permit steam to escape.

PLACE dish on baking sheet. Bake 30 min. or until crust is deep golden brown. Let stand 5 min. before serving.

Save 40 calories and 5 grams of fat per serving by preparing with KRAFT Light Zesty Italian Dressing, reduced-sodium condensed cream of chicken soup and VELVEETA 2% Milk Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product.

Calories per serving:410 Makes 6 servings

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Spring? Are You Coming?

The last few days it has been BEAUTIFUL in Chattanooga! The weather has been outstanding. The kids have gone to the park three consecutive days, I wore shorts yesterday, and today for church....skirt with NO tights! Yes! It almost seems like spring might be peeking her pretty little head around the corner.

We took the boys to River Park this afternoon. This is one of our FAVORITE parks in the area. It's right on the river (thus the name), has a great playground, and great sidewalks for walking or riding bikes. Last summer, the boys and I went there to run two or three days a week. It was fantastic.

Here are a few shots from the park, and from playing in the yard before going to the park.

Thanks for the Help!

Saturday, the school I teach at, Clifton Hills Elementary, had a great gift given. Ethos, a local church, held a community work day for us. We felt very blessed to have this group come in and help with some things we, ourselves, haven't had a chance to get to. The number one project was to paint "The Barn." The Barn is in a small courtyard area between classrooms, and is meant to be an outdoor classroom. It was built, but no one ever took The Barn to the next level. As far as I was concerned, it was a hideous eyesore. When approached by my friend, Addie, who is in charge of this church's service days, I knew exactly what we needed to do. PAINT! Visions of a red barn surrounded with flowers and shrubbery began to grow in my mind. We needed to take the first step.

We had a lot of other things to get done, too, and we did end up getting quite a bit checked off the list. I think Addie was a bit disappointed because not as many people showed up to help as promised, but it's winter...people have kids that get sick...etc. etc. Life happens. However, we thought it was awesome regardless, and were excited when we were told they would come back to help again soon! YAYAY!!

Next time...we plant.

Thanks so much ETHOS!!

Friday, February 19, 2010


Vista Print is offering 140 FREE custom address labels for a limited time! All you have to pay is $3.11 shipping. (These are regularly $7.99 plus shipping.) I really dislike having to write my name and address on all my bills (sad...the laziness), so this was a great deal for me! Plus- really cute to put on cards and the like. They have tons to choose from, also. I went with these...

Gotta love a good owl.

To order your free labels,click on the link above, then click on “Stationery & Home Office” on the left and then select “Return Address Labels.”

What Color Are You?

Every time I see one of these silly quizes, I feel a compulsion to take it. I think I just want to see if the outcome is really at all on target. This COLOR quiz was fairly accurate. At least, the definition was. I tend to be drawn to warm reds and oranges, but this one says yellow is my color.

"You are quite the powerful thinker. It’s this talent that allows you to overcome a plethora of great obstacles. Luckily, this doesn’t affect your ego and you give off a pretty easy-going appearance. You enjoy the finer things in life and also have an attraction to art. If you can help it, you try not to rock the boat. But you also can’t stop yourself from searching for new ideas, methods or styles. "

What do you think? Me? Or no? What about you???

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Story Time with Cash

Cash is telling his own story....

"....and the angels said, 'Dont worry, God is cool.'....."

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Cookie For Breakfast? YES, Please!

Since beginning my quest to get into shape, I have been getting up early... REALLY REALLY early... to go workout. Needless to say, I am not interested in a fussy breakfast before I go. I longed for something that I could eat in the car while drinking my coffee and driving to the gym. I tried some different types of protein bars, and they were good, but then I stumbled upon this healthy goodie that has everything to help me start my day.

Banana Oat Breakfast Cookie

nonstick cooking spray
1 large banana, mashed (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup chunky natural peanut butter
1/2 cup organic honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup organic rolled oats
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup nonfat dry milk powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup dried cranberries or raisins

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat two cookie sheets with cooking spray; set aside. In a large bowl stir together banana, peanut butter, honey, and vanilla. In a small bowl combine oats, flour, milk powder, cinnamon, and baking soda. Stir the oat mixture into the banana mixture until combined. Stir in dried cranberries or raisins.
2. Using a scant 1/4 cup measure, drop mounds of dough 3 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets. With a thin metal or small plastic spatula dipped in water, flatten and spread each mound of dough into a 2 1/4 inch round, about 1/2 inch thick. Once baked, each cookie will be about 3 1/2 to 4 inches in diameter.
3. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 9-11 minutes or until browned. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Store in airtight container or resealable bag for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 2 months; thaw before serving. Makes 12 breakfast cookies.

I usually keep 3 or 4 out, and freeze the rest. Also, the last batch I made I used applesauce instead of banana because my 3 year old had confiscated the last banana for himself. They turned out just as tasty. OH! I haven't done this yet, and it's a total no brainer, BUT I think with my next batch I am going to mix it up a bit by adding dark chocolate chips rather than dried fruit. Why? Cause I am sassy like that. Hope you try these delicious guilt free morning treat!!

Nutrition facts per cookie: 227 cal, 6 g total fat, 0 mg chol. 77mg sodium, 37 g carb., 4 g dietary fiber, 6 g protein.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Luc Turned ONE: all about his party

I can't believe my baby turned one. As cliche as it sounds, it really does seem like yesterday we were bringing him home from the hospital. Now he is off of formula and demanding real (as we lovingly say, "human" ) food. He is running around the house getting into everything, and beginning to say words. He definitely has his own fantastic little personality, and he is definitely MY little cuddlebug. Ohhhh, how we love to cuddle.

Ok, on to the party. If anyone knows me at all....they know I am a sucker for a party. I think I have kid birthday parties more for me than them. I love to plan and execute. It doesn't always turn out the way it was played out in my mind, but I have never been too disappointed. This party was no different.

My husband's one request was that I make this a "healthy" party. He doesn't like the idea of filling the kids up with two tons of sugar, and really, I am not such a fan of it either. We don't really do a lot of sweets around here, if we do give one it's in small amounts. However, I just didn't really think about making it healthy. I was pleased with how it all turned out.

I made yummy yogurt vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting. Everyone seemed to approve, and the kids were never the wiser. hee hee. We added some apples/caramel, PB & J sandwiches, chicken salad sandwiches, and I hand dipped some pretzels to the spread. For goody bags, I made some trail mix, and also sent home a big colorful envelope stuffed with a big fat healthy oatmeal chocolate chip cookie. The cookies were my favorite.

The decoration inspiration came straight from Martha Stewart. There is always something on her website that gets me excited. For Cash's first birthday, I used her website's idea for a monkey party. It was pretty stink'n awesome.

The party went well. We had some last minute cancellations due to illness, but I suppose that is to be expected in the DEAD of winter. We'll probably encounter that a lot with Luc's birthday until he's a bit older. was rock'n.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Cash...My Hero

My husband- "Son, we gotta go pick up mom. There's something wrong with her car. Go get your shoes..."

Cash- After a thoughtful pause..."Well, I guess we have to get her. She's the only PRINCESS we've got."

Good logic.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Yummy Yummy Black Bean Soup

I found this great recipe for a healthy black bean soup that I just HAD to try. It turned out awesome. I even received high praise from my husband, who is quite particular about his food. It's pretty hearty, and feels like a chili without meat. Fantastic for these frigid winter nights. Try it out.

Follows these instructions to substitute a slow cooker for the Dutch oven in this recipe: decrease water to 3 cups. Cover and cook on high for about six hours, or until beans are tender.

Vegetarian Chipotle Black Bean Soup


For the soup:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium-size yellow onions, chopped
1 medium-size red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium-size green bell pepper, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
4 teaspoons ground cumin
2 bay leaves
1 16-ounce package dried black beans
2 1/2 tablespoons chopped canned chipotle chiles
4 cups water
4 cups vegetable broth (chicken broth can be used as a substitute)
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

For the garnish:
1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 cup chopped seeded plum tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Heat olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and bell peppers and sauté until beginning to brown. Add garlic, bay leaves, and cumin; sauté for just under a minute.
  2. Transfer mixture to 6-quart Dutch oven. Add beans, chipotles, water, and broth. Simmer on stove top until mixture reaches a boil.
  3. Turn off heat, cover, and remove from stove top. Place into the oven and cook at 275°F until beans are very tender, about three hours. Make sure to check on the beans while cooking. If they look to dry, add more broth or water.
  4. Remove Dutch oven from stove and transfer two cups of the bean mixture to blender; puree until smooth. Return puree to Dutch oven. Stir in lime juice, salt, and pepper.
  5. Top each serving with a dollop of yogurt, tomatoes, and cilantro
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