30 March 2011

What's on your plate? S is for ... {part 2}

Here is part 2 - Shrimp -the peel and eat kind.  Hubber makes this recipe plus a hotter batch for those who like it hotter. :o)

All you'll need:
1 cup butter or margerine, melted
3/4 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 tablespoon hot chili sauce
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 lbs unpeeled jumbo shrimp - Rinse and Drain
2 lemons - sliced thin
*Note :: Hubber does not measure anything. He does a dash of this; a pinch of that type of thing.*

All you'll do:
Combine everything above except the shrimp and lemon slices, in a bowl and set aside. 

Layer unpeeled shrimp and lemon slices in a 13x9x2 baking dish.  Pour the combined mixture, from the bowl, over the shrimp.

Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for about 23 minutes or until shrimp turns pink.

*TIP for greatness* Baste occasionally with its juices.

Oh boy, my mouth is watering now!  Everyone requests this when we go places.  You won't be disappointed. :o)

Good luck and enjoy!

What's on your plate? S is for ... {part 1}

Hi! Hi! Hi!
Smile large today. The sun is out and everything seems to be lining up into place - just like the little chickies following their momma - just perfect.  Know what I'm saying?

Anyhoo ... This week's What's on your plate? is all about seafood and will be done in 2 parts. Part 1 is for Simple Salmon. So very simple I might add.

All you'll need:
Salmon Filets (enough for your family and/or guests)
Black Pepper
Lemon slices (enough for 2 per filet)

All you'll do:
Season the salmon with as much of the salt and pepper as desired (light salt is best).  Add the 2 lemon slices per filet then place skin side down on the bbq for about 20 minutes or until flakey.

Add some seasoned grilled asparagus, a patio table and a beautiful Spring evening and you have a lovely dinner.  Just like that. Quick and easy which is so important with how busy our lives are these days.   


Oh! Ok, What we do to the asparagus is this:
Brush with olive oil then sprinkle desired amounts of fresh garlic, black pepper and seasoning salt. Place on the grill for about 10 minutes.  We like ours a little crispy.

Check back later this evening for part 2 ... peel and eat shrimp.  It's Hubber's recipe. YUM!

29 March 2011

Crock Pot Chicken + Roasted Potatoes {I was on a roll!}

Hello Folks! I attempted my first whole chicken in the crock pot and it turned out AND it was yummy. I was so excited that I even made roasted potatoes for the first time too. I know, I can't believe it either. sheesh!

I had a few fears going into this little dinner idea ... 1) I was afraid the crock pot would catch fire and dang it, we haven't shown Jeter how to use the extinguisher yet; and 2) I was afraid if there was no fire then the darn thing would decide to quit working leaving me a raw chicken. I am slightly paranoid. Although after successfully using a completely intact crock pot with zero burn marks yesterday, my paranoia has eased a tad.

Here is how I concocted this easy breezy dinner: 

For the chicken you'll need:
1 whole chicken (insides taken out) <---that was a first for me and ewwww!
1 can of beer (I used budlight)
1/2 an onion
3/4 of a garlic thingy (about 11 cloves)
1/4 cup of Wickles (approximately)
Black pepper
Seasoning Salt
Cajun Spice
Aluminum foil

All you'll do: (we prepped the night before)
Make about 5 balls with the foil and put them in the bottom of the crock pot.  This is to keep the chicken from sitting in it's juices.

Stuff the chicken with the onion, garlic and wickles.

Rub the black pepper, seasoning salt and cajun spice on the outside and under the skin of the chicken. Place in crock pot.

Dump the beer, or your desired liquid, in the crock pot and cook on low for 10 hours.

Then prepare yourself for delicious-ness!

For the potatoes all you'll need is:
Enough new, or red, potatoes for your serving size
A bit of Olive oil
Black pepper
Garlic Salt

All you'll do:
Cut the potatoes in halves, or quarters depending on size, then place in a bowl.

Sprinkle olive oil and your desired amounts of black pepper and garlic salt over the potatoes then mix them all together.

Place on a cooking stone or baking sheet.

Adjust your oven rack to the lowest level then bake at 450 degrees for 30 minutes.

Ready to bake

We all enjoyed this easy dinner which made me happy. My family liked it and didn't get sick. HA!  Hmmm ... now what's next?

I'll leave you with this cartoon-ized pic of the puppy sleeping ... just because.

Until tomorrow ...

28 March 2011

Setting Goals {me + family}

I believe in setting goals. I mean, without goals how would you have anything to strive towards. Know what I mean?  We -the 3 of us + cats + pup + rats- have goals. I like goals and I am inspired to go after them daily.  Some are large goals that will take time to achieve and some are smaller goals that can be acheived daily.  My daily goal today is to successfully cook my first ever whole chicken in the crock pot (more on this later).

Since the 3 of us + cats + pup + rats have goals we figured we'd share a few.  Let's start with the animals ~ I am their typing fingers. :o)

The Rat's goals are:
1) To never bite the hand that feeds us or else we will starve. (they have never bitten anyone by the way)

2) To not hang out by the edges of the cage when there is a cat lurking.

The Pup's goals are:
1) To chew one shoe, just one, without being caught. (not going to happen. I've got my eyes on that little stinker)

2) To get the cats to like me enough to play with me and not swat my nose.

He is trying hard ... see. He pinned Sammy down and licked her head.

The Cat's goals:
1) To stay away from that puppy.

2) To torment that puppy by intentionally jumping up higher then he can reach then stare at him until he leaves.

The 3 of us ...
Daughter's goals:
1) To make honor roll this school year. (she's doing very well)

2) To consistently have good at-bats during tournaments. (she's doing good here too)

Hubber's goals:
1) Increase the sales in my area to the point where I get a company car.

2) Coach Daughter's softball team to Nationals. (He's such a great coach)

My goals:
1) To implement the inexpensive marketing idea I learned from the financial seminar I attended last week. (stay tuned for more)

2) To run at least 1 mile on the treadmill 5 mornings a week along with my normal routine.

This is just a few of our goals. ;o) You know there are many more because we are driven to thrive.

I will leave you with a picture of the chicken taken this morning when I put it in the crock pot.  I was happy to hear that the crock pot did not catch fire while Hubber was at work. (A huge fear of mine. I know, I know ... I'll get over it eventually.)

Until tomorrow!

25 March 2011

I did not vanish {busy week}

Oh sheesh, you know it's been an unusually busy, chaotic week when I can't muster the time to show bloggy love.  It's funny how this little ol' blog has become such a big part of my daily existence.  I thought about {her} every day, just had no time to {visit}. I reep the rewards of starting this -back in September 2009- every time I hear a comment or read an email of how I have inspired someone along the way.  Those comments/compliments inspire me to keep this little diddy going.  :o) That said, let's get on with it ...

My unusually, chaotic week in review:
Last weekend was more mellow then the weekends we have had lately. Softball was cancelled due to the Seattle type weather we have been having so we took advantage and cleaned our house. All weekend. Even daughter pitched in and cleaned her bedroom and playroom.

Sunday afternoon I had the worst allergy attack I have had in over a year -don't pitty me- which pretty much knocked me down from about 2:00pm through most of Monday.  Talk about hindering my plans. humpf!

Monday evening we had to get Daughter packed and labeled for her 5th grade 4-day field trip to Mission Springs.  It's a science camp in the Santa Cruz mountains and oh boy, she sure was excited to go. She comes home today by the way. YAY!

She spent lots and lots of time with little Jeter pup before she left.  Adorable.

Tuesday and Wednesday were days full of work - In the office and real estate paperwork and meeting prep in the evening, meetings with partners and clients.  I feel lucky to love my jobs like I do. Have a I mentioned that before?

Thursday was work and an awesome seminar put on by Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. ~Building Business in 2011.  I am primarily a listing agent, specializing in short sales. This seminar gave great information and awesome marketing ideas that are inexpensive.  Key word - inexpensive. :o)

And here we are at Friday already. I am so happy this week flew by because we have been missing our little munchkin and I know she has been missing us too, and the puppy.  I didn't worry about her too much on this trip since one of my besties was a chaperone. Phew!

Tomorrow I will be doing laundry and meeting a client for their final walk-through while Daughter goes to a play with her Grandma Lynne and Papa Jay.  They take her to a lot of plays which is really awesome. Lucky girl!

Lastly, don't worry my bloggy peeps! We'll be back next week with What's on your plate? It's a Shrimp & Salmon edition! Whoop!

Have a wonderful weekend!

22 March 2011

oh my weeds!

Oh my geesh! This wild Northern CA weather is fooling our earth.  For example, we have had 5 days of straight storm - no sun & brrr cold temps, then today, SUN and 60 degrees.  What the heck?

As you can imagine the bushes, flowers and oh ya, the WEEDS are going crazy in our yard.  HUMPF! Darn weeds! 

Little Jeter will be hard to find pretty soon.
 That is supposed to be a gravely type ground cover. 
Even Jeter looks concerned.

Oh! there is more ...
Not pictured is the one that's almost as tall as the fence ...
and many, many, many more. {sigh}

Yep, I am pretty positive we have our work cut out for us just as soon as this weather clears up.  My hope is to have the yard cleaned by the time Dad and Mom2 come for a visit from Florida.  Fingers and toes are crossed.

The positive = Pulling weeds is a geesh darn good workout. So I'll keep that in mind and press on. :o)

17 March 2011

For Japan With Love

If you can donate, please do. The devastation is so sad to me.
All I can do is pray for the ones who survived and have faith
that they will bounce back and rebuild - slowly but surely.

I was going to start a new Jeter feature today, but obviously
when I saw this I instantly decided Jeter's feature will begin
next week.

Enjoy your weekend.

16 March 2011

{It's a carb thing} What's on your plate?

Another Wednesday. Another What's on your plate? Oh boy time is sure flying by these days.

I figured I would try to find a pasta dish for today because pasta is loaded with carbs.  I have a little 5k run in two weeks so I need some yummy carb-filled meal ideas.

So here ya go ... R is for Rigatoni with Italian Chicken ... Can you say YUMMA!

All you'll need:
6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
2 cups Italian salad dressing
1 (16 ounce) package uncooked rigatoni pasta
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes with Italian herbs
1/4 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon dried parsley - nah ... not for mine
2 cloves fresh garlic - at least - Optional

All you'll do:
Place chicken breasts in a large resealable plastic bag and pour in the Italian dressing. Seal bag, and marinate chicken 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Drain, discarding dressing, and dice.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add rigatoni and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain, transfer to a large bowl, and toss with diced tomatoes.

Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Place chicken in the skillet, and season with red pepper. Cook and stir 15 minutes, or until chicken juices run clear. Serve over the pasta. Top with Parmesan cheese, and garnish with parsley flakes.

[Prep Time: 15 Min] [Cook Time: 30 Min] [Ready In: 45 Min]
Amount Per Serving [Calories: 554] [Total Fat: 25.5g] [Cholesterol: 61mg]
Serves approximately 8 servings  


14 March 2011

Weekend recap.

Softball. That's it. Our weekend consisted of 5 games of softball.  OH! You want details? Well ok then, here ya go ...

This past weekend our coach (aka Hubber) spontaneously signed us up for the NSA Vacaville Kick-off Tournament.  He did this because we got rained out last Sunday and he wanted the team to get as many games in as possible before our ASA tounament this coming weekend.  We the parents were all fine with this ... I think. :o)

On Saturday we had a bright and early 8 am game which meant we had to be at the field at 6:45. Yep, 6:45am.  We played 3 games and won all three of those games. Scores: 8-0; 11-0; 8-1.  Go Mizuno!

Being seeded #1 for the playoffs on Sunday we automatically got the bye Sunday morning.  This meant our first game was not until 11 so we didn't have to be to the field until 9:45.  I must say I have never been so happy to hear '9:45am'. :o)

Game 1 was an intense one.  We were losing 3-2 in the last inning. Thankfully we were home team and were able to have the last at bats.  Our talented team of pure awesomeness pulled it off and ended up scoring 3 more runs giving us the win 5-3. Phew! I have never seen our cheering section so excited! It was pretty cool to watch.  On to the championship game we went. Which by the way was 20 minutes after that first game.

Game 2 - Championship game - was also a great game.  We were tied 5-5 in the last inning.  Unfortunately, the team we were playing, Concord Lady Liberty, scored a run. The score was 6-5 as we went up to bat.  We didn't get any more runs scored so we took runner-up for this tournament.

We were all happy with this as the entire team played very well.  The girls had fun and were excited to get the trophy and a medal.

  Look at all of their smiles.  Ahh ... such a great group of girls.
(Not pictured: Sophie. If she was there she'd be smiling too.)

Now on to the week ahead which includes work, school, homework, softball league game, conditioning, softball practice and I have got to get on the treadmill every night. My 5k is in two weeks! WHOA!

11 March 2011

flashback friday - looking back 50 years

Have you ever thought about the whole time machine thing? If it was real, what era would you travel back to? {wishing I had that special Delorean} Do you, or have you saved stuff from your grandparents, your family heritage, your life, so you could reflect back on them at a later date? And share them with your kids and/or grandkids? 

Do you like antique/vintage shopping?  I do and I am lucky.  I have a room in my house which is decorated with all things vintage.  Most of which are from our family.  I have so much stuff that I have started incorporating pieces into our modern decor throughout the house.  Let's not ask Hubber what he thinks about this.  Really, he doesn't mind because he's cool like that. 

I love most things vintage.  From furniture to clothes to old hair clips. I pretty much love it all.  I like seeing how things were worn and how they looked back in the day and how some styles/trends have come back into our current mags.  I always wonder who? what? where? when I find a new treasure.  If only I could know the story behind every item. {dreaming} 

In honor of one of my favorite things I thought it would be pretty awesome to look back 50 years for this week's flashback friday.  Check out this stuff from 1961.

[LOVE the one on the right and the headband too]

[Cutest suit ever. Minus the gloves.]
[I like the hat]

[Vroom ... vroom ... I'd drive this today. Yep!]
[Good ol' t.v. I would LOVE to get my hands on one of these.]

[A classic]

[I can watch this any day, any time.]

[Jeter's ancestors ... hee hee]

Do you like vintage?

09 March 2011

What's on your plate? Let's do this ...

This week's is easy, short and sweet.
I have a busy schedule today which means
there is no time for nothin' else.

So here ya go ...

Q is for Quiche

All you'll need:
8 slices bacon
4 ounces shredded Swiss cheese --->I'd probably use colby or monterey jack cheese
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
Sneak in some garlic if you love it like me :o)

All you'll do:
Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9 inch pie pan.

Line bottom of pie plate with cheese and crumbled bacon. Combine eggs, butter, onion, salt, flour and milk; whisk together until smooth; pour into pie pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, until set. Serve hot or cold.
Mmm ... Sounds good to me! Enjoy!
Per serving ... [Calories: 291] [Total Fat: 18.8g] [Cholesterol: 187mg]
[Prep Time: 15 Min] [Cook Time: 35 Min] [Ready In: 50 Min] 

08 March 2011

Meet Jeter

Meet Jeter. Named after Derek Jeter.  Formerly known as pup #6. 
Yep, I refer to our pup as a great Yankee. -don't judge

A little background real quick ... Daughter has been asking for a dog for a long time. We kept telling her, "No. Take care of your cats first .. blah blah blah". Well, about a month ago one of the trainers at All American (softball training facility) also breeds beagles and her momma beagle had a litter in January.

My Hubber loves beagles and Kylee has been doing so well in school while managing her very busy softball schedule that we thought this would be as good a time as ever. So 5 weeks ago we picked pup #6 out of a photo lineup and had been keeping the secret. DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD THAT WAS?

Fast forward to last Monday, Feb 28th: the pups were ready to go to their new homes. Yes! Finally. Daughter had a workout and a lesson so Angie (momma beagle's momma) brought pup #6 to All American so we could surprise her.

That little bundle of cuteness waited patiently under the blanket until Daughter was all done.  I pulled back the blanket and sat there waiting for her to see him.  It only took a few minutes and oh boy! she sure was excited.

Jeter did very well his first week in his new home.  And we did pretty well too.  Hubber and I haven't had a dog for about 10 years.  Sheesh, having a puppy is like having a baby.  The first few days he slept a lot and the first few nights I was up taking him outside every couple hours. 

Now he plays more then he sleeps (he sure is cute) and he slept for 5 hours straight last night. YAY! Puppy steps. Oh ya, he is trying to chew everything in sight so we have to keep an eye on the little stinker.

All in all Jeter is the perfect addition to our family.  

Stay tuned for future pupdates.  You won't want to miss all of the adorable stories and pics we will be posting.

PS, I apologize for the poor photo quality. The above photos are taken with my blackberry.  Future posts will contain much better photo quality. :o)

07 March 2011

monday mornings

The weather is beautiful today.
Makes me think of sitting on a beach house patio
sipping a latte while watching the ocean waves roll in.
Afterward going for a run on that very beach, with our puppy.
{day dreaming}

Smile at everyone today. You never know, that could
be the very thing that makes someone's day.

Softball update: The Mizuno All American 00 girls performed amazingly again this weekend.  With Sunday getting cancelled due to rain we played just the 3 games on Saturday.  Results :: 2 wins, 1 loss.

04 March 2011

flashback friday ~ this one's for Grandpa

I absolutely LOVE this photo of
my grandfather and his crew in WWII.

We are very lucky to have grandpa with us still today.
My big brother used this photo as inspiration for one of his tattoos.

Here are a few numbers from the 1940s ... WOW!

What Things Cost in 1940:
Car: $800
Gasoline: 18 cents/gal - huh?
House: $6,550 - WHOA!
Bread: 8 cents/loaf
Milk: 34 cents/gal
Postage Stamp: 3 cents
Average Annual Salary: $1,900 - hmmm
Minimum Wage: 30 cents per hour

Can you imagine?

Have a wonderful weekend!

02 March 2011

Time for a new What's on your plate?

P is for Potato Sausage

This a so yummy! Have you ever had potato sausage?
At Christmas time our family makes this - it's tradition.
I love that Daughter has a lot of fun helping her
Grandparents with the preperation too.

Some of us eat this with ketchup and some with butter.
I prefer ketchup myself.

Why don't you give our family recipe a try and decide which you 
prefer - ketchup or butter.

All you need:
2 1/2 lbs Pork butt (ground)
1 1/2 lbs ground beef (I won't substitute with ground turkey this one time)
10 Potatoes
1 Onion
1 tsp Pepper
2 tbsp Salt
3/4 tsp Allspice
1 tsp Ginger
1 lb Sausage casings

All you do:
Grind potatoes and onion, combine with ground meat.  Add spices and mix well.

Fill casings - not too tightly.  Place is salt water; brine to store.

Before cooking prick in several places.  Boil slowly for 45 minutes.

Good luck and ENJOY!