Friday, May 27, 2011

Foodie Friday: Orzo Salad

We hosted Peachy's birthday party here last weekend. (More to come on the party soon.) I had tasted this salad at a recent potluck and had the recipe tucked away. I decided this would be the perfect side to round out our birthday bash. Everyone loved it. (Including me. I am still loving it and the little we had left over.)

Orzo Salad
-3 T olive oil
-2 cloves minced garlic
-1 pound orzo
-3 c chicken stock
-2 lemons
-salt and pepper
-1/4 c olive oil
-1 c fresh basil--chopped
-1/2 c fresh mint--chopped
-1/2 c dried cranberries
-1/2 c slivered almonds--toasted
Warm 3 tablespoons olive oil in large pan. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add orzo and cook for about   5 more minutes or until orzo is toasted and lightly browned. Stir often. Add chicken stock and juice of one lemon. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered for 8-10 minutes. Orzo should be tender, but firm to the bite. Toss orzo with 1/4 olive oil, juice of second lemon, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste. Allow to cool until it reaches room temperature. Once cooled, toss in the basil, mint, cranberries and almonds.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

5k Fun!

I have been able to walk in two 5ks in the last couple of weeks. The first, on Mother's Day, was a breast cancer walk that I participated in with my mother-in-law. (We also walked it as a family last year.) I walked the second with a group of moms from the moms group that I participate in. Both walks were a ton of fun. Walking is a great way to get out and visit with others. And since I was sans Peachy on both walks, I could really get my gab on. I was having such a good time during the second walk that a few of my friends and I ran the last 10th of a mile. Tee, hee, hee. It really did make me wish that I could be running again, but we'll save that until after Cream is born.
Thanks ladies for some awesome 5ks!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Father's Day Gift: Mustache Mug

Looking for that perfect gift for the dad's in your life? This is sure to bring a smile to their faces come Father's Day.
For this project, I bought inexpensive beer mugs (mine are from IKEA) and using glass paint added a fun feature. Once stuffed with a favorite treat, this mug is a gift any dad would appreciate.
1. Thoroughly clean your glass.
2. Make a mustache template out of Contact paper.
3. Adhere the template to the glass. You will want to make sure to position it so that it looks as if the drinker has a mustache. I went a few inches down from the lip of the glass. I also made sure to make it on the correct side. (For this you will have to think about whether the recipient is right or left handed.) Also make sure to rub around the  edges of the Contact paper. This will ensure that no paint leaks through.
4. Apply the paint following directions on the bottle. I found my paint at Hobby Lobby by the other acrylic paints. Just make sure that the paint is for glass. After applying several coats and allowing them to dry, I peeled off my Contact paper. My directions had me put the glass into the oven and bake at a certain tempertature for a set amount of time.
5. Stuff with a fun treat, or present with a favorite beverage!

I am linking to the following parties:

Sumo Sweet Stuff
The Girl Creative

Tip Junkie handmade projects
Todays Creative Blog



Somewhat Simple: Strut Your Stuff


Friday, May 20, 2011

Foodie Friday: Caramel Brownies

As I surf the web, I have learned to bookmark anything that I find interesting. The time I don't bookmark something is the time I spend hours looking for it at a later date. My sewing and recipe bookmark tabs are definitely my biggest. Obviously I don't always get around to making everything in my recipe tab, but when I need a recipe for something new, it is one of the first places I turn.
I recently bookmarked this recipe for Caramel Brownies from Bake at 350. When I knew we were having company a few weekends ago I knew this would be dessert. It didn't let me down. Yum!!

Picture from Bake at 350

Caramel Brownies (from Bake at 350)

2/3 c. evaporated milk, divided
14 oz. pkg. caramels
3/4 c. butter, melted
1 pkg. German Chocolate cake mix
1 c. chocolate chips
1/2 c. chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350.

Melt caramels with 1/3 c. evaporated milk over low heat. (Unwrapping the caramels is the most tedious part of this recipe.) :)

Combine the melted butter, remaining 1/3 c. evaporated milk and cake mix.

Spread 1/2 the batter into an ungreased 13 X 9" pan. (An offset spreader really helps with this, but you could use the back of a spoon, too.) Bake for 6 to 8 minutes.

Sprinkle the top with the chocolate chips and pecans. Spread melted caramels over the chips and nuts. Drop remaining cake batter on top. (Don't worry about spreading the batter out; it will spread while baking.)
Bake an additional 15-20 minutes.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

2 Year Old in the House!!

Two years ago Little Peachy entered our lives and made me a momma. Now we have a sweet, busy, smart, and lovable 2 year old living in our midst.
It is so hard to find the words to describe our Peachy. (I am sure that every parent has this challenge.) She is so complex and never ceases to amaze me. I love that she is now able to use her words so well to talk to us.

 Don't let the little package fool you, a 2 year old is an amazing creation. It seems as if her mind is growing every hour of everyday.

Here are some of the fin things that I want to remember about our Little Peachy girl.
She says, "Come here, Momma." In the cutest little voice that is so hard to deny when she wants me to do something with her.
And when her little voice says, "I love you," it melts my heart every time.

The last few months she has always requested that Mr. Cherry and I sing "Jesus Loves Me" before she goes to sleep. She has picked up the first two lines and walks around the house singing them.
She loves all things baby dolls, but is still a little shy around real babies.
She loves puppies. (I don't have the biggest love of dogs, but have worked hard at not passing this on to my daughter. Apparently I worked a little too hard.)
She love to be outside and has no fear of getting dirty.

She has a fascination with shoes. If we are ever near a shoe department, she starts to take her own shoes off so that she can try shoes on. And if there is ever a pile of shoes, as often happens at entryways, you can be sure to find her trying on the fanciest shoes available.

While she is always doing something, she has a great attention span and will sit and play with the same object for long periods of time.
Our little girl has always had a good appetite. She eats descent amounts of pretty much anything we give her. Lately she has a thing for lemons. She loves that they are sour and after sucking on the lemon slice for a while will eat it. She even dove into her aunt's water glass when we were eating out the other day to get herself a lemon.

Happy 2nd birthday, Peachy!! We love you so, so much and can't wait to see what your future years hold.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mother's Day Gifts

This year I tried my hand at some painted pottery as a Mother's Day gift. I was overall happy with how they turned out. However, I learned I need to be a bit more precise in my painting technique.

Home Again!!

Last week Peachy and I skipped out of town for a visit with my family. My younger sister was graduating from college and my older sister was coming to town for the occasion. By coming to town, I mean, taking a series of long flights that lasted over a day to be with us again after being overseas for two years. My grandma, Nana, was also there. So it was a pretty exciting week. Peachy got to know her Auntie Ya and we all got to just hang out as a family again. Here are a few highlights of the week.
Reading with Nana.
Hanging out with Grandpa and Auntie Em.

Hanging out clothes with Grandma.

Relaxing with Auntie Em.


Spending time with Auntie "Ah."

Friday, May 6, 2011

Foodie Friday: Iced Coffee

The perfect nap time, sitting on the deck, mid-afternoon treat, drink.

Iced Coffee (from Tasty Kitchen)


  • 2 cups Boiling Water
  • ½ cups Instant Coffee
  • 1-¼ cup Sugar
  • ¼ cups Coffee Syrup (optional: You Can Also Substitute Your Favorite Creamer)


Mix all ingredients together. Let it cool, then store in glass jar in the refrigerator.
To serve: Mix 1/4 cup coffee mixture with 1 cup milk. Then add crushed ice and whipped cream as desired.
**I made mine with decaf so I can drink it anytime. I love that this is a quick and easy treat to keep around in the fridge. I also like that you can make it as strong or weak as you like!** 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

24 Weeks with Number Two

Little Cream is busy growing, growing, growing right now. It amazes me that all of his/hers major organs and structures are all in place at this time. On the pregnancy front, nothing really new to report. The doctor was happy with everything he saw last week. Well, everything, except the amount of weight that I have gained in the last few months. Whoops. So this last week brought about some changes diet wise for me. It isn't easy to steer clear of the empty calories, but I am trying. As the doctor said, "You don't want to grow a baby bigger than you can deliver." So true!
We got another sneak peek at our Cream as well. (S)he is still doing well. They got most of the pictures they couldn't last time, minus the complete spine. The baby was lying on its back making life difficult for the tech, but looking oh so cute. Since we haven't heard back, we will assume that the radiologist was happy with what  was there and that we won't need another ultrasound next time. We also got some 3-D images this time. I have never had that before. There were some excellent face shots for us. This baby looks a lot like its big sister!
Next up? The one hour glucose test. Despite what I have heard from other pregnant moms, I really didn't mind it last time.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tutorial Tuesday: Nursing Cover

A friend recently had her third child and I knew that even though she has done this whole new baby thing two other times, she would really like some new hand-made baby gear as a gift. My trusty sewing machine and I set to work and this is what we came up with.
The tie onesie and diaper/wipes carrier are both things that I have made many times. What is new is the nursing cover draped over the back of the chair. I have been thinking of making one of these for a while. When I had Peachy I ended up ordering one with a promotion a company was running at the time. When it arrived, I knew that I could do better. It wasn't anything special. I have seen lots of tutorials for nursing covers on the internet and a quick search brought this one from Sew Much Ado, a blog I read frequently. It was a very well written tutorial. Super easy to follow. And I was so pleased with the results. I know I will be making one for my personal use with Little Cream.

I am linking to:


Monday, May 2, 2011

Weekend Recap

After hosting our royal playgroup on Friday we continued on with our very normal and non-royal weekend. And do you know what? Normal and non-royal is just fine with me!
Mr. Cherry is busy gathering materials to build a shed under our new deck, deck, deck. This meant many trips to home improvement stores over the weekend. Peachy was very excited to see the fork lifts driving around and now always looks for "tractors" at home stores. (Beware, grandpa, a tractor ride may be requested for the next time we are there.)
I was able to attend a women's day at our church on Sunday. It is always a joy to remember our true purpose and focus on life. And to gather together with my sisters in the faith.
Upon my return home I found a note taped to our door inviting us to the backyard neighbor's house for supper. They purchased a new, huge smoker over Easter and wanted to try out its goods on us. Smoked ribs, turkey, and pork? Yes, please. It was delicious food and equally delicious company. We tend to hibernate a bit over the winter, so it is always good to see everyone again after the long winter.
We awoke Sunday morning to find this May Day treat on our doorsteps.
Oh well. Spring will come one of these days and it will be greatly appreciated once it does.
We finished up our weekend with a few errands, yes one to a home improvement store, and a pizza buffet.
Oh and when we were tucking our little sweetie in, she told us "I love you very much" and "Peachy happy." Yes, my dear, so am I.