28 February 2011

It's time for some softball!

That's right my friends. It's that time again ... time for some softball!!! YAY!
We are very excited to start this season with the Mizuno All American 00 ASA team.  We are a new team but we are packed with talent. That talent really shined this past weekend at our first tournament.  The little tuffies played 6 games over the 2 days which resulted in 6 wins and the the title of 10U Grand Slam Tournament Champions!

I am so impressed not only with the talent of these 10 year olds but with their composure and maturity, on and off of the field, as well.  We are looking forward to the rest of the season!

Coach Jamie gave the team the best advice at the end of the big weekend,
"Enjoy this for the rest of the day then forget about it tomorrow.
We start the next tournament at 0-0."

25 February 2011

flashback friday ...

Remember when gas prices were less then a $1 per gallon?

I do. I had a 1972 VW Beetle when I was 16.
(I learned from my then boyfriend now hubber, that my beetle was
not a cool beetle because it didn't have the small taillights ... um ok)

Anyhoo ... I remember gas being 95 cents per gallon.
Ahh...those were the good old days.

{Fast forward to yesterday} I paid $3.42 per gallon at Safeway
and that was after swiping my club card. WHOA!
Oh and my beetle is now a SUV.
Boy how times have changed.

I am sure back in the old daysmy parents and grandparents
were once gasping at the thought
of paying 95 cents per gallon like I was at the $3.42 per gallon.

One question: Some retro fashion comes back in style from time to time so
whay not gas prices? Hey! I am allowed to dream right?

Have a great weekend!

24 February 2011

1 Brother-in-law + 1 Sister-in-law = 1 Cutie Patootie

Hello! Hello! Hello!

It's official, I am an Auntie ... again. YAY!

Welcome baby Jude Mika Leppanen
February 24, 2011
7lbs, 10oz

Momma and Baby (and Daddy) are all doing fantastic.

My only issue is I don't eat dirt or play with bugs so I am wondering what
I am going to do with the little guy.  Ahh, I'm sure I'll think of something.

23 February 2011

Oh my geesh! It's time for What's on your plate? Again!

I said it before and I'll say it again ... OH MY GEESH! Where is the time going? I have so many projects, tasks, to-dos, accomplishments to complete all while the time is whizzing right on by.  That's cool though, this just means we are closer to Christmas ... WOOT! WOOT! (Ya, I went there ... AGAIN!)

So my Peeps! It is that time again ... already.  It's time for yet another What's on your plate?

Side bar: The response to this feature has been magnificent to say the least. This makes me so happy and anxious to get the new blog site completed - tick tock. New features will be introduced in spurts once we fully convert. YAY! {smiling from ear to ear} THANKS TO YOU ALL. :o)

As we swiftly move through the alphabet:  O is for Oven-Omelet.  That's right, it's a breakfast thing and it's easy!  So here ya go ...

You'll need:
8 eggs
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded hash brown potatoes
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Pinch of salt and pepper to taste

You'll do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8x8 inch glass baking dish.

Beat eggs in a large bowl; stir in the milk. Stir in the potatoes, ham and cheese. Season to taste and pour into prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 45 to 50, until knife inserted in middle comes out clean.

[Prep Time: 5 Min] [Cook Time: 45 Min] [Ready In: 50 Min]
Amount Per Serving [Calories: 251] [Total Fat: 18.1g] [Cholesterol: 273mg]

Sounds pretty yumma to me. Have fun and Enjoy!

22 February 2011

First knitting project of 2011 - Complete!

Oh. My. Goodness.  Where is this month year going? It is almost the end of February for geesh sakes! (incase you were wondering)

I am very proud to report that I am on track for the things I wanted to accomplish in 2011: exercise consistently, more knitting, crafting, etc... I have been exercising 5 days a week, I completed my first knitting project (see below) and I purchased a vintage vanity with bench that I am planning to distress. So exciting!  

First knitting project - COMPLETE!  A hat and scarf for my mom. 
 She needs these to keep herself warm while walking her dogs. I decided to surprise my momma and make her this hat and scarf and they are in her favorite color - green! (I apologize for poor photo quality). Can you see the pattern? The hat spiral and the scarf is ridged.  The yarn is soft and cozy - ahhh.  I was so excited to get them done before she left town and even more excited that she loved them!

Next project is in the pipline ... distress here I come! I am a first timer so I'm sure I will have to refer to these tips to help guide me through the process.

PS, The Bachelor was so good last night. It's official, I am on Team Emily!



18 February 2011

Flashback Friday!

My sister recently found and scanned a lot of pictures from our childhood.  I am so glad she did.  Here are a few ...

Sister, Dad, Me, Brother
I am the youngest.

I am loving the visor and I must say I am rocking the jumpsuit - chicken legs and all. Aren't jumpsuits back in style now? I think I should buy one. :o) Geesh, I really enjoy old photos.

This is one of my favorites.
Not sure if it's the rollers or the smirk on my face that I like best. :o)

Have a great weekend!

16 February 2011

Wow! Another Wednesday ... Another What's on your plate?

Here in No. Cal it is cold, windy and rainy. Hailing actually. So I thought posting my favorite soup would be perfect on this burrrrr cold day.

N is for New England Clam Chowder ... YUMM-O!

approx 8 servings
[Prep Time: 15 Min] [Cook Time: 30 Min] [Ready In: 45 Min]

All you'll need:
4 slices bacon, diced
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 1/2 cups water
4 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
ground black pepper to taste
3 cups half-and-half
3 tablespoons butter
2 (10 ounce) cans minced clams

All you'll do:
Place diced bacon in large stock pot over medium-high heat. Cook until almost crisp; add onions, and cook 5 minutes. Stir in water and potatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, and cook uncovered for 15 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender.

Pour in half-and-half, and add butter. Drain clams, reserving clam liquid; stir clams and 1/2 of the clam liquid into the soup. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until heated through. Do not allow to boil.

If it's cold where you are this will definitely warm you up. Enjoy!

Amount Per Serving [Calories: 396] [Total Fat: 22.5g] [Cholesterol: 101mg]

15 February 2011

my date with mini me and her buddy

This year for Valentine's Day daughter was off from school so I decided to take the day off too. I actually did it. A full day off with no work. Well, I did correspond via email but I didn't open a computer or visit an office. It was nice. 

What did we do you ask?
At the request of Daughter and her buddy we:

went to frozen yogurt at Tops.
It's a build your own type of place here in town. Daughter LOVEs it.
Nevermind that it was freezing outside. :o)

Then we went to see Gnomeo & Juliet 3D. 
The movie was so cute! I recommend you go see it too.
Obviously they didn't recycle their 3D glasses in the
cardboard 3D glasses recycle box that sits outside the
theater door like I did.

Later Hubber came home from work and we went to Daughter's
softball lesson then dinner at Joe's Crab Shack.
We just LOVE that place!

All in all we had a LOVEly heart day.
I hope you did too.

Update 1: My mom's last knit is almost done (post to come).  It's a good thing too since she is leaving town on Friday.

Update 2: My new blog is almost ready.  I am just waiting to review a few photos. Yay!

11 February 2011

Classroom Valentines ~ On a budget

Hello! It's almost the day of L.O.V.E.  Can you believe it?  This year sure is passing by at a rapid speed but I'm not complaining.  This just means we are closer to Christmas. (heeeee heeeee) Ya, I went there. :o)

Anyhoo, when you have a child in elementary school you do the class Valentine thing.  All you parents know what I am talking about - goodies for each student.  Not just a box of cookies for the class but something separate for each kid.  Well as you can imagine, this can be an expensive project.  Here in CA our education system is one of the areas that has seen cut backs which means the classroom sizes have increased.  Daughter has 28 kids in her class (including her).  The days of spending approx $3 per child is definitely out the window so we improvised. 

It was Daughter's idea to hit the Dollar Tree {embracing proud mom moment}. Isn't she the bestest?  She picked out 35 plastic Valentine themed cups; 2 bags of red shredded paper; 36 (3 packs) pencils; 2 bags of Smarties; 3 bags of chocolate hearts; 2 bags of cinnamon discs; 2 bags of strawberry hard candy; 2 bags of jaw breakers.  Our total spent to make 35 kids smile was $26.34 and that included a Dr. Pepper for Hubber. WHOOP! {quick happy dance around the room}

How do you think we did?

Oh boy, I sure do love a good bargain.

Have a wonderful weekend!

10 February 2011

A BONUS What's on your plate?

Do you have a picky child who won't eat a whole lot of veggies or any at all?  Welp, I've got an idea for you! Daughter LOVES this little goody.  She also loves most veggies but that's for another day. ;o)

Oh yes! Butternut squash.  It's so easy and the kids gobble this up.  Hubber does too when cooked with different toppings.

All you do is peel the outside of the squash, cut it in half and clean out the seeds.  Cut in cubes (see size in pic) and place in an oven safe baking dish. I use my stones from Pampered Chef. Love those things!

Then ... for the kids, or anyone with a sweet tooth: sprinkle as much brown sugar as desired over the top of the squash. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.

Hubber and I like ours sprinkled with salt, pepper and fresh garlic. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.

That's it! Easy and so good! In our opinion.  Enjoy!

09 February 2011

What's on your plate? Asian Sensation!

M is for Moo Goo Gai Pan
{mmm ... mmm ... mmm}

This is one of my favorite dishes.
Doesn't it look so delish?!

I sure think so.

Guess what? You can make this goody at home and it's sooo easy!
Take a looksie for yourself.

[Prep Time: 25 Min] [Cook Time: 15 Min] [Ready In: 40 Min]

All you need:

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon vegetable oil

  • 1 1/3 cups sliced fresh mushrooms

  • 2 2/3 cups chopped broccoli florets

  • 1 1/4 (8 ounce) cans sliced bamboo shoots, drained

  • 1 1/4 (8 ounce) cans sliced water chestnuts, drained

  • 1 1/4 (15 ounce) cans whole straw mushrooms, drained ->yep, still skipping this.

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon vegetable oil

  • 2 3/4 cloves garlic, minced ->I sneak in a little extra.

  • 1 1/4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into strips

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon cornstarch

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon white sugar

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon oyster sauce

  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon rice wine

  • 1/3 cup chicken broth

  • All you do:
    Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat until it begins to smoke. Stir in the fresh mushrooms (YUK), broccoli, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, and straw mushrooms. Cook and stir until all the vegetables are hot, and the broccoli is tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from the wok, and set aside. Wipe out the wok.

    Heat the remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil in the wok until it begins to smoke. Stir in the garlic, and cook for a few seconds until it turns golden-brown. Add the chicken, and cook until the chicken has lightly browned on the edges, and is no longer pink in the center, about 5 minutes. Stir together the cornstarch, sugar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine, and chicken broth in a small bowl. Pour over the chicken, and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for about 30 seconds until the sauce thickens and is no longer cloudy. Return the vegetables to the wok, and toss with the sauce.
    Per Serving [Calories: 411] [Total Fat: 14.4g] [Cholesterol: 87mg]
    Is your mouth watering yet? 

    07 February 2011

    3 thoughts to start the week

    This week I have to:
    finish my mom's knits;
    meet with clients;
    register for the nutrition run in Elk Grove;
    tell my family I love them;
    cook at least twice &
    inspire a few strangers.

    Make your week a fantabulous one!

    04 February 2011

    flashback friday

    Going through photos on the laptop and found this
    Say it with me ... 'Awwww' :o)

    This one isn't super old but it was a while ago ->2005!
    Boy how time flies.

    Stay tuned for more flashbacks in the future.
    Have a wonderful weekend.

    02 February 2011

    Wednesday already! What's on your plate?

    I have been waiting for this one. It's one of my favorites!

    L is for Lasagna ... yes please!

    The above photo is the most recent lasagna we made and oh boy, it was so delicious!  Doesn't it look just mouth watering?  The fun thing was we
    worked on this together - all 3 of us.  Lasagna is a good dish to make as a family (in my opinion) because there is a little something for everyone to do.

    Here is how the 3 of us whipped this one out ...

    You'll need:
    2lbs ground turkey
    1 cup* finely chopped onion
    3 cloves of garlic, crushed
    4 cups meatless pasta sauce
    1 cup water
    2 teaspoons salt
    1lb lasagna noodles (boiled)
    2 cups ricotta cheese
    2 eggs, beaten
    1 1/2lbs* mozzarella cheese
    1 cup* grated parmesan cheese
    *Approximate measurement

    You'll need to do:
    ~Cook ground turkey, onion and garlic in 3 quart saucepan over medium heat for 10 minutes.

    ~Add sauce, water and salt; blend well.  Simmer for 15 minutes.

    ~Combine ricotta cheese and eggs.

    ~Spread about 3/4 cup meat sauce on bottom of greased (use Pam) oven safe baking dish.  Add a layer of cooked lasagna over the meat sauce. Top with a layer of ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese and meat sauce.

    ~Repeat layers twice ending with a layer of lasagna.  Spead meat sauce over the top and add more mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle parmesan cheese.

    ~Cover and bake at 350 degrees for about 35 - 40 minutes. 

    ~Remove cover and place back in oven for about 10 minutes to brown the cheese. If desired.  This is a must for us since I LOVE the crispy cheese on the end pieces.  YUM!

    I hope you enjoy this as much as we did.  Have FUN!