Friday, September 28, 2012

Fall Fun!

Fall fun has already started around here, despite the fact that the weather can't decide if it wants to turn cool or stay summer.  I love warm weather, but there's something about the fall season that excites me!  Leaves changing, boots, football, chili and soups, Halloween, harvest festivals and the start of the holiday season!

We kicked off fall last weekend when we took Peyton to a local pumpkin patch.  We went with some sweet friends of ours from church and had a blast.  The weather was warm, but there was a cool breeze most of the time we were there.  Unfortunately I forgot my camera, but thankfully our friends remembered theirs and took loads of pictures of the girls for us!  I'll do another post in detail once I steal their photos...

Next up we have our town's Harvest Festival.  It's next weekend and Peyton and I will be riding in the parade with her preschool.  I think she'll be really excited because she always loves a hayride.  That's her favorite part of picking out a pumpkin :)  After the Harvest Festival comes the State Fair and then Halloween!  We have so much fall fun to look forward to.  I can't wait!!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Fall Comfort Foods

I love the beginning of the fall season...especially the food!  Our meals always change along with the weather and fall brings lots of crock pot soups and chili's and of course chicken pot pies. I wanted to share 2 recipes I used this past week that are FABULOUS and so so easy.

The first is an awesome chicken pot pie recipe.  This particular recipe makes enough for 3 pot pies...yes 3!  I cooked one and put the rest of the filling in a gallon sized Ziploc bag and tossed it in the freezer.  Now I have 2 extra chicken pot pies that just have to be thawed and cooked :) 

Homemade Chicken Pot Pie  


  • 12 TBSP (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chopped sweet onions (2 small onions or 1 large onion)
  • 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups chicken broth 
  • 3 tsp salt (use less if you are using store-bought or previously salted chicken broth)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 6 cups shredded chicken (this is about how much you get from an average whole chicken)
  • 2 cups medium-diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes (I used a bag of frozen carrots & peas)
  • 3 cups small-cubed potatoes, blanched for 2 minutes
  • 1 (10 to 12-ounce) package frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
  • 3 recipes for a 9 inch double crust pie
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
  • Coarse sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Preheat over to 350o.  In a large pot, melt the butter.  Add the onions and saute over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Slowly, add the chicken broth to the butter mixture, stirring constantly.  Bring to a simmer, and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring, until thick.  Add 3 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and the 1/2 cup cream.  Add the shredded chicken, carrots, peas, potatoes and parsley. Mix well.  Remove from heat.
Line the bottom of three – 9 in. pie pans with pie crust.  Fill each pie crust with 1/3 of the chicken mixture.  Cover each pie with the top crust and seal and crimp the edges.  Brush the crusts with the egg wash and cut several slits in the top of the pastry to allow steam to escape.  Sprinkle the top of each pie with the coarse sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
Bake the pot pies in the preheated over for 60-75 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling and very hot.  Allow to cool for at least ten minutes before serving.

The 2nd recipe is one I cooked last night.  It was so so so easy.  I love recipes I can throw together before I run out the door in the morning (because I'm always running late to work) and it's all done when I get home.  This is a crock pot taco soup that is delicious!  It also makes a LOT.  

Taco Soup

  • 2 cans of kidney beans
  • 2 cans of pinto beans
  • 2 cans of corn
  • 1 large can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tomatoes and chile's
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 packet ranch dressing mix
  • 1 lb browned ground turkey or hamburger (optional.)
  • shredded cheese and sour cream for embellishment

Brown meat if you are going to use it, drain fat and add to crock pot stoneware insert (the meat. not the fat). Sprinkle seasoning packets on top of meat. Drain and rinse the beans and add. Add the ENTIRE contents of the corn and tomato cans.  Stir.  Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5. I think the longer you cook soup, the better, so if you have the time, opt for cooking on low. Stir well, and serve with a handful of shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Preschool, Birthday's & Books

Yet again I've slacked on my blogging.  Since my last post Peyton has completed her first 2 weeks of preschool (which she loves), work has been crazy busy, I read all three 50 Shades of Grey books, and I celebrated the big 3-0.  As you probably know, we spent close to a month celebratimg this birthday.  I in no way have been upset or depressed by this birthday, I'm honestly not sure what the big deal is....just another reason to celebrate in my opinion!

I couldn't have asked for a better birthday.  We started with the adults only Myrtle Beach trip (which I already blogged about) and then my parents had a family party for me with my favorite foods...including homemade milky way ice cream...yummmmm!  I got some things from H&M I wanted and some cash to do my own shopping (one of the best things you can give me).  My bestie, Nicole, took me out for sushi and shopping one evening after work.  My hubby and Peyton gave me a banging HP tablet (my in laws gave me a fabulous Coach case for it) and the hubby took me to see my favorite band this past weekend...Ben Folds Five!!!!  I have been completely and totally spoiled.

As for Fifty Shades of Grey...oh my word.  I read all 3 books in a little over a week, and I'm not a huge reader.  I heard so much about this series, both good and bad.  I have to say, I loved it...loved loved loved it.  I'm actually upset that it's over and I'm not sure what to do with my time!  Judge me if you want, but I thought it was awesome :-)


Friday, September 7, 2012

1st Day of Preschool!

Tuesday was Peyton's very first day of preschool and I was so nervous I could barely control myself.  I have no idea why.  Last Thursday Edwin and I went to Parent's Night and got to meet her teacher.  Her preschool is at my parent's church, so thankfully she was already familiar with the building.  We decided it would be best for me not to take her for her first day since my Mom will be the one taking her every Tuesday and Thursday.  Peyton is a creature of habit (like her Mommy) and the smallest things throw her off...not to mention it's always harder leaving Mommy. 

You have 2 options at drop off/pick up.  You can use the carpool system where they get your child out of the car and take them in or walk them in.  We really want to utilize the carpool system just because it helps so much with independence, but we decided walking her in for the first day would be best.  My Mom walked her in, she hung up her bookbag, gave a kiss and hug and went in to play....that was it.  No drama, no tears, nothing.  My Mom went through the carpool line to pick her up and they said she did great. 

I was a little nervous about day #2 since she knew what to expect.  My Mom did carpool drop off this morning, but Peyton didn't want the Director to get her out of the car.  She wanted Nonnie to do it.  Luckily there were no cars behind them so my Mom got her out, then she went right in with the Director with no problem.  She had some tears when my Mom picked her up only because she didn't want the Director to hold her hand when she walked her out, but she decided she was fine with her carrying her.  The Director said she had a great day again and had zero tears! 

I can't even begin to tell you how happy this makes me.  I just pray this continues over the next few weeks as she gets in to a routine! 


Thursday, September 6, 2012

It's Coming...

I promise the post about Peyton's 1st (and now 2nd) day of preschool is coming.  I'm waiting on the pictures from my Mom before I blog about it.  I know you've all been anxiously awaiting this particular post.  You probably haven't slept! 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Labor Day Weekend

Y'all can I just say that my Labor Day weekend was AWESOME!!!  We spent the weekend with 3 other couples in Myrtle Beach...with no kids!  It was an early 30th birthday celebration for me. 

Don't get me wrong, I missed Peyton tremendously and I know everyone else missed their kids as well.  But there was something so liberating about being "free" for 3 days.  We lounged on the beach and by the pool, we shopped, we ate, we slept late, we stayed out late, we partied hard and we drank entirely too much.  I couldn't have asked for a better group of friends to celebrate with and I'm so thankful for all of them. 
Below are a few pics from the weekend, I carefully picked the appropriate ones to post. 
I'll leave the stories in MB ;)
**Stay tuned for my post about Peyton's 1st day of preschool**
On our way!!!