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Saturday, July 16, 2016

Skillet Chicken Broccoli Quinoa with Cheese

A one pot meal! These days a recipe wins extra points if it creates less dishes to clean up after dinner. The leftovers of this were just as great as well. I found the recipe on Pinterest (of course). I actually read through several recipes before finding a Chicken Broccoli Quinoa one that didn't look like a lot of work or contained a bunch of extra stuff (like heavy cream) that I didn't want in my dish. Oh and few weeks ago I reached 1000 followers on Pinterest! Woohoo! So if you aren't following you should ;)  there's an easy link on the right-hand side to do so.

Skillet Chicken Broccoli Quinoa with Cheese {One Pot Meal}
from Cooking Classy, serves 4


- 1 lb chicken breast diced into one inch cubes
- 3/4 cup chopped yellow onion or sweet onion
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (or buy the pre-minced jar)
- salt and pepper
- 14.5 oz can low sodium fat free chicken broth
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 1/4 tsp dry thyme
- 2.5-3 cups chopped fresh broccoli florets
- 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

Heat olive oil in a big skillet (big enough for all of these ingredients) over medium-high heat and add onion. Saute 2 minutes then add chicken for additional 2.5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and saute one more minute. Chicken should look cooked on outside at this point. Add broth, quinoa, and thyme and season mixture with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a full boil then cover and reduce heat to simmer for 12 minutes. Quickly lift lid and add broccoli to the top, recover and continue to cook for 8 more minutes (this will basically steam the broccoli) or until broccoli is tender and quinoa is cooked. Sprinkle cheese over top and recover for 1-2 additional minutes until cheese is melted.

I did take the time to grate the cheddar instead of buying it pre-grated because I like the taste of it that much more. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Whale Plushy

For this last Christmas, I decided I wanted to make something personal for two of the babies I was doing gifts for. I planned to do one for Dexter too but haven't gotten around to it yet. I swear I do way more crafting/sewing for gifts than for myself/us. Any one else that is crafty do the same thing?

I found this tutorial when I was looking for a stuffed animal to make. I wanted something fairly simple and who doesn't love a whale!

Here is the tutorial with printable pattern pieces and I followed it step by step. I did the larger size whale and I'm glad I did because some of the curves were a little tricky to sew around and it would have been even harder with a smaller pattern.

You could add eyes with buttons but I like them without. It takes more stuffing than I thought it would and I used a little corner tool to help push the stuffing into the small areas but you could also use the opposite end of a wooden spoon. This makes a great gift for someone! I would definitely make another one and hopefully I'll get around to it eventually :)

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Squares

I saw this recipe on somewhere on facebook and saved it (LOVE that fb feature!) so when I needed to make a dessert for Easter supper, it is what first came to mind. Especially because I had every ingredient already on hand except for the oats.

(note: this is a little plate, not a dinner plate)

Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Squares
serves 16 (but they are very small squares so cut as you see fit), from: SkinnyMs


-1/2 cup smooth natural peanut butter (I used reduced fat)
-1/2 cup virgin coconut oil
-3/4 cup honey or maple syrup
-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
-2 cups rolled old fashioned oats
-1/4 tsp kosher or sea salt
-3/4 tsp cinnamon
-10 oz bag dark chocolate chips (original recipe just said one bag which is confusing... I used the 10 oz and it worked out great)
-2 Tbsp virgin coconut oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together first 4 ingredients. Put oats in a food processor and blend until ground into a flour. Mix oat flour with salt and cinnamon. Mix oat mixture into the peanut butter/coconut oil mixture until fully combined. Pour into 8x8 inch baking dish (doesn't need to be greased).

Melt chocolate with the 2 Tbsp of coconut oil. I used the microwave at 50% power for a minute and did additional 30 second intervals until it almost all melted and I could easily mix it together. Pour on top of the peanut butter later and smooth out. Bake for 18 minutes and cool on stove top.

Place in fridge to set for at least 2 hours. Store bars in fridge or freezer. Enjoy!

My husband said these tasted like really good chocolate peanut butter granola bars. These were pretty easy and I'd definitely make them again. If you make them let me know what you think!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Bright and colorful nursery

I realize I've been a complete blogging slacker. I don't know why I thought I'd have more time for this being a stay at home mom but I definitely have less haha. I can't promise how often I will post but I have some fun posts to share (including this one) that I hope to get around to soon.

The nursery in our home is probably the most decorated and most complete of all the rooms. I had a vision for it and it came together just like I hoped... this room makes me so happy! I shared the painting of the aqua nursery here.

I didn't want a particular theme in the nursery and wanted it to be bright and colorful and happy. I knew I wanted animals in it but not all themed around one animal. After finding the crib skirt and curtain fabric everything came together to go along nicely with those. The source list for everything I can remember, is at the bottom.

To the right of the door when you enter is the diaper changing area and dresser with photo collage above it. It is a mix of photos, printables, a mirror and a wooden painted letter. In the corner is a small trash can and the cloth diaper pail

On the left wall after you enter is the cube organizer that contain toys, books and a few bins. Two of the bins serve as laundry hampers and the other two hold blankets, babywearing wraps and extra wet bags. The door on the right side of the cube shelving is the closet... redo here.

Two of my favorite things on these shelves are the Hobbes that Dexter confidently points to when you ask him "where's Hobbes?" and the Star Wars print which was the first thing Eric and I bought for baby at a vintage bi-annual market when I was pregnant. It says "Dad, you are my father".

The opposite wall of the entry door has the crib and glider recliner. I've always loved the vintage look of the jenny lind crib. I spent many many hours in that chair and it was totally worth every penny. Since it is microfiber it cleans easily which is important when you have a reflux baby :)  The flashcards and thumbprint frame with thumbprints from people at my showers are two of my favorite part of the nursery. I have always loved the look of hanging flashcards in a nursery and it was the perfect way to have animals without it being too themey.

The final wall to the right of the crib has two windows and a little side table next to the glider. It was the perfect size for my water and phone and any other essentials while nursing. It was originally pink and my parents painted it yellow for us. My rocking chair and teddy bear from when I was a child are also on this wall. I had planned to add pictures or something on the wall in between the windows but haven't yet.

Over a year later and I still love this room. Good thing since I go in here many times a day!

Dresser: Craigslist
Diaper organizer: Amazon
Changing pad: Amazon
Changing pad covers: made by my mom
Dr. Seuss print: free online
Mirror: Target
Wooden letter: Craft Cuts
Robot print: etsy
1 Samuel print: made by me in photoshop
Frames: Target and HomeGoods
Cubby Shelves: IKEA
Gray linen bins: Target
Alphabet box: HomeGoods
Sunshine canvas: HomeGoods
Ceramic A, Z blocks: made by my mom
Books: various
Clemson piggy bank: Clemson Variety and Frame Shop
Star Wars print: Sable and Gray
White noise machine: Amazon
Red rocking horse: Lake Norman Antique Mall
Nightlight moon: Amazon
Crane truck: IKEA
Shoes: made by my mom, HomeGoods
Little People blocks: consignment sale
Camera monitor: Amazon
Alphabet animal flashcards: etsy
Crib: Amazon
Crib sheet: made by my mom and I
Crib skirt: made by my mom and I
Glider recliner: Best Storytime
Side table: HomeGoods, paint color: BM Dalila
Lamp: Goodwill
Cork lamp shade: target, only in store
Gray plush rug: HomeGoods
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