Wednesday, March 31, 2010

David's Paintball Weekend

This past weekend David went to camp with the guys and play paintball. They try to go once a month in the warm spring/summer months. It's a great way for them to catch up and do "guy" stuff. Although I don't have pictures from this past weekend, because you know how guys and photos are, I'll show you some from previous games. Here are a couple action shots.
This next picture shows how many people come to the games. They are 24-hour games that start Saturday at noon and last until Sunday at noon. You don't play the entire time, but you can play at night if you have the right equipment. There is even little kids there as you can see. This game was up in Tennessee.

Here is a group shot that was taken a few years back when they started playing. Even Molly got to make it to a game! She was the team mascot. She is too mischievous now and wanders away so she's not allowed to go anymore. I'm glad he has such great friends and that they are able to take time to hang out for these weekends. I'm sure they are already planning for the next one! 
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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Weekend Update!

This past weekend went by so fast for me. David went camping and paint-balling with his guy friends and I stayed around here. I caught up on DVR shows, went out with Amber to look at linens and wedding stuff, picked up mine and Michelle's bridesmaid dresses(which are so cute, but I can't show you till after the wedding), and did a little shopping. The deal of the week was definitely this pasta pictured below. My Kroger had the buy 8 get $4 off on these Smart Taste pastas. I had printed 16 coupons (with the use of 3 computers) for .75 each and that made all of these .025 each! That's .40 total for all of them! I even paid with coins. So fun!
I am waiting on pictures from David's weekend to post. He had a great time and even got a little sunburned. I am looking forward to getting our outdoor vegetable garden going in the upcoming weekend and my wonderful husband's birthday is on Easter this year!
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Friday, March 26, 2010

I saved 65% on my grocery bill this week!

Kroger is still having their mega event where you buy 8 items and save $4 instantly at checkout (or .50 per item). I used this as a great way to stockpile things we use all the time since I had enough food from last shopping trip for this week. I talked last week about some coupon tips and about the Kroger sale. Click here to reference back. You still have a few days to head to the store to get some great deals. Some highlights were: Classico pasta sauce for $1, Motts Apple Juice for $1, free or $1 deodorant, diced tomatoes for .24 and free Smart Taste pasta.
Breaking it down: Total before savings- $98.86. Total savings with manufacture coupons, store coupons and Kroger card-$64.26. Total paid out of pocket- $34.62 for a 65% savings! Here is the receipt to prove it.
Shopping trips like these making couponing worth while! 
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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Top Three Thursday- Celebrity

 This week's topic is top three celebrities! This was a hard decision, but I narrowed it down to people I love to watch in any kind of movie or show.

1.) Kate Hudson- Isn't she just so cute! I love to watch all her romantic comedy movies, anything with her in it I'll usually watch. I do want to see Nine, the musical movie she was in recently. It looked really good. Has anyone seen it?

 2.) Neil Patrick Harris- He is hilarious in How I Met Your Mother, and have you seen him sing and dance hosting the award shows lately? So funny! I'm so glad he has made it through the Doogie Howser days and moved on up!

3.) George Clooney- I could have tied this one with Brad Pitt. They just always seem to have the "play it cool" attitude. They are fun to watch and still popular after all these years.  I recently watched Up In the Air with George Clooney and really liked him in it.

What are your top three celebrities? Pin It

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pico De Gallo/Guacamole and Spicy Shredded Pork

I was craving Mexican since that's where my siblings spent all of last week so I will post these yummy recipes for you. Both recipes come from The Pioneer Woman.
     5 whole Plum (roma) Tomatoes
     ½ whole Large (or 1 Small) Onion
     3 whole Jalapeno Peppers (I used 1, they are just too spicy for me)
     Lime Juice
     Salt To Taste

     3 whole Avacados
     Pico De Gallo
     Lime Juice
     Salt To Taste

Pico de Gallo:
Chop jalapenos, tomatoes and onions into a very small dice. (Leave seeds in your jalapenos for a hotter pico). Adjust amount of jalapenos to your preferred temperature. Next, chop up a nice-sized bunch of cilantro. Just remove and discard the long leafless stems before chopping. No need to remove the leaves from the stems completely. Place all of these ingredients together in a bowl and give it a good stir.
Squeeze the juice of half of one lime into the bowl. Add salt to taste and stir again.

Start with buttery-soft avocados. Halve them lengthwise and remove the pits. Next, with a spoon scrape them out onto a large plate. Next, with the bottom of a clean cup (or with a fork) mash the avocados, making sure to leave it relatively chunky. Add just a couple of shakes of salt to taste. Next, add a generous helping of Pico de Gallo. Fold together. Lastly squeeze the juice of half of a lime over the top. Give it one last stir.
    Next we made Spicy Shredded Pork to make soft tacos with.
     4 pounds (up To 7 Pounds) Pork Shoulder (you can use pork tenderloin, if you can't find a shoulder)
     1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
     1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
     1 teaspoon Chili Powder
     1 Tablespoon (to 2 Tablespoons) Salt
     Pepper To Taste
     3 cloves (to 4 Cloves) Garlic
     1 Tablespoon (to 2 Tablespoons) Olive Oil
     2 Tablespoons (to 3 Tablespoons) White Wine Vinegar
     ¼ cups Brown Sugar
     1 whole Onion
     Lime Wedges

Preparation Instructions
Rinse and pat dry the pork shoulder.To begin, just throw the dried oregano, cumin, chili powder, salt, black pepper, garlic, olive oil, white wine vinegar and brown sugar into a food processor or blender. Cut one onion into quarters and put it in the food processor with the spices. Blend mixture until totally combined and then pour it over the pork shoulder.

Now rub it into every nook and cranny of the meat, tucking it under folds an in crevices. Then place the pork into your slow cooker with 1-2 cups of water. Cover tightly and roast pork on low for approx. 8 hours. When it’s done let it rest for 15 minutes before shredding.

Shred the pork shoulder (two forks work well). When it’s all shredded be sure to pour the juices all over the meat. Serve with warm tortillas, lime wedges, sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole, tomatillo salsa...
It made a ton so invite some friends or bring it for lunch!
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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Puff Pastry & Elephant Ears

We've been wanting to make our own puff pastry dough for a while now. We found a random recipe online, tried it,  and it didn't work out. When I saw that my friend, Jen went to pastry school and made some I got really excited. Click here for a link to her blog. She has the recipe and directions on there. It does take a little time, but its every so often so you don't have to be in the kitchen the whole time, just around your house.
We made our version of Elephant ears. We cut our dough in smaller sections so they were easier to work with, that's why ours are a little smaller.
Mmmm. They were so yummy.
Look how puffy they are!
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Monday, March 22, 2010

Sushi Night!

On Friday night we decided to stay in and make our own sushi. It's so fun and not that hard, it is a little time consuming, but provides fun entertainment at the same time. We had Amber and Preston over to join in the festivities. I don't like anything about raw fish so I like to say that I'm a Vegan Sushi eater, but I also like to add teriyaki chicken. Don't criticize me, I can do whatever I want, it's homemade. We used cucumber, avocados and chicken. David also brought us home some sake! You can't eat sushi without warm sake.
The most important ingredients you need are sticky rice, seaweed sheets, bamboo rolling mat covered in plastic wrap, sharp knife, wooden spoon and soy sauce. We got the rice at the H-mart or something similar. We cooked it the day before and put it in the refrigerator, it has to be cool to use. I like to make inside out rolls (the rice is on the outside of the roll). You spread your rice across the non-shiny side in a thin layer with your wooden spoon, then you flip it over. Add your toppings in a thin strip. Now you are ready to roll.
You want to make a tight roll to keep everything inside. Keep lifting up the mat and plastic wrap as you go.
Once you are finished, you want to get a sharp knife and a cup of water. You want to keep the knife wet so that nothing from your sushi roll sticks to it. Every couple of slices you can dip it in the water.
Look at Amber, she looks like a pro! She was making sure her roll was tight and together. She made a regular roll. All you have to do differently is spread your rice only 3/4 of the way down, add your toppings and start rolling. The last 1/4 you didn't put anything on you can put a thin layer of water on to seal your wrap up.
Final Products!
And then there was none... I did finish those up the next day though. Make sure you dip in soy sauce after, it tastes so good or add some wasabi if you like that kind of thing.

Molly and Audrina were BFF's. So cute.
Group Photo! We had a great time. Can't wait to do it again. We are available for parties, just inquire within.
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Top Three Thursday- Places We've Been!

1. Mexico for our Honeymoon- We went to the Riviera Maya in July for our honeymoon. Shout out to my Brother and Sister who are there right now with their spouses. Jealous. We had a great time eating, exploring the Mayan ruins, ATV riding, swimming in cenotes, going in a real submarine in Cozumel, shopping and relaxing!

2. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic- We vacationed here in May of 2008. David had recently returned from Dubai (where he was working and I bet one of his top places he's visited) and we wanted to take a nice vacation. We enjoyed dune buggy's, zip-lining, snorkeling and our great view from our room! This is also where David proposed to me on the beach! It was such a great trip that I'll always remember. David loves the thrill of all the excursions if you couldn't tell by now, but I'm glad we go on them as it makes me more adventurous.
3.)Charleston, SC- I've been to Charleston a few times including for cheerleading in college and it's such a beautiful place. They are surrounded by water and they have such unique houses and parks. My sister got married there in July of 2007 (07/07/07). I didn't take that many pictures because I was doing MOH duties while there, but we did have a fun bachelorette party night out around their downtown.
What are your top three places you've been? I think David would add Dubai and Seattle to his list. I wish I would have visited him while he was working at those locations. Pin It

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

This photo was taken this past weekend at a St. Patty's Day party. David had the best hat attire there! They served green beer in a keg and green punch! They also had Irish music and lots of fun people.
This next photo is from work today with us girls wearing our green! We have Leah, Andrea, Lacey and me!
We are having Amber, Preston and Audrina over for dinner tonight and our dinner is already cooking in the crock pot. We are having Corned Beef and Cabbage with Carrots and Potatoes. Green beer and Green Apple Martini's will be enjoyed by all. 

 The recipe comes from the Food Networks Sandra's Money Saving Meals. I just cut up the potatoes and added it to the crockpot to save time. It was a little full in there, but I think it will come out great!

Corned Beef:

  • 3 pounds corned beef brisket with spice packet
  • 2 carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 small head green cabbage, cored, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 1 cup water


  • 1 1/2 pounds baby red potatoes, sliced in 1/2
  • 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


For Corned Beef:
Put the carrots and onions on the bottom of slow cooker, and put the corned beef on top. Arrange the chopped cabbage around the beef. Add the apple juice and 1 cup of water along with the contents of the spice packet. Cook on low 6 to 8 hours until the beef is tender. Remove the beef and vegetables to a platter and keep warm.
For potatoes:
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the potatoes. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Drain and return them to the pot.Add the butter, garlic, parsley, and salt, and pepper, to taste. Gently combine so that all the potatoes are evenly coated. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with corn beef and vegetables from the slow cooker.
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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Grocery Shopping Coupons

I started clipping coupons in October of this past year. I was just trying to save a bit on our grocery bill per month and I kept reading blogs of people that were doing it and saving 40-50% (or more) on their grocery bills each week. I am not a pro by any means, but I've had a few people ask so I thought I'd share what I know. I subscribe to the Sunday paper, which is the best source for coupons. You are looking for the red plum and smart source coupon inserts. I got a good deal starting out at $1.47 per paper by using a coupon code link (that you can find when you purchase a full price $2 paper in the store). If there are great coupons that week you can buy numerous papers to help you get more, but mostly I'd stick to one especially if you are just starting out. Our local paper is the AJC, but just get the biggest paper you see available in your area. You can also check out for online printable coupons. You can only print twice per computer (hit the back button once you have printed to refresh for your second print).

Next you will need an organizer for all your coupons. I cut the coupons that I know I will use, but then also keep the rest of them in case a great deal comes up and I can go back and grab them. I use a photo organizer that I got from Michaels for the coupons. You can use just about anything, but make sure it has tabs so you can organize by category. Here is a photo of mine.
The way to get the best deals is to use your store ad for the week and pair the sales with the coupons for extra savings. This can be time consuming so there are shortcuts! This is where the coupon/money saving blogs that I read come into play. They do all the work for you! They match up the store deals with coupons and tell you what date the coupons come from. For local South East shoppers the blog I love to read is You can also use She has a list of most all the stores and where you can find your local store deals.
Kroger this week is doing a March to Savings sale. The big hype with this event is if you buy 8 items, from a list of specific ones, then you get $4 off your total order instantly at check out.  If you haven't done so yet, they have an online game that you can play every day from now until April 6 for a chance to win prizes. I have already won a free California Pizza Kitchen frozen pizza. They also have $5 off your total order, which I'm hoping to get. You don't win everyday but once every 3-4 days. You will have to sign up and enter information about your Kroger card because these deals get automatically loaded on them.

Some of the hot items that are on sale this week are: Diced tomatoes for $.24 each using $1 off 4 cans newspaper coupon, Irish Springs soap for $.49 each using $1/2 Irish Spring newspaper coupon, $.99 Motts Apple Juice, $1.27 Bacon using 2 $1.50 Oscar Mayer Bacon Coupons, and BOGO Beef Roast…comes out to $1.99/lb.

Also, Some stores double coupons up to $.50 so if you have a coupon for $.50 off of something then they will give you a bonus match of $.50 for $1 off! This is very important in getting the best deals. Our Kroger here in Georgia doubles most coupons (i did have an issue this weekend with printable online coupons), but if you are shopping with a lot of groceries and a bunch of coupons then it will work 95% off the time. Our Publix also matches coupons up to $.50, so check with your local store, google it, or read your local coupon matching blogs for more info.

Final Tips- Always go with a detailed list. You can bring your coupon organizer or I just write my list on an envelope and put the coupons in the envelope. Leave extra time, before coupons I could shop in 45 mins, now it takes me 1.5 hours with David's help. Sometimes I wait every 2 weeks to do major coupon shopping since it takes so much prep work and just get essential stuff on the off weeks. Don't get discouraged, you can start off with a few coupons and try it out. Let me know if you have any other questions that I forgot to address. Happy Shopping! Pin It

Monday, March 15, 2010

Square Foot Garden Assembly

David started and completed work on our square foot garden this weekend! If you know David then you know that he has to take it to another level. He wanted to make the box movable, easier to reach and away from the dogs height. Here is a photo of the inspiration. It is from the show Big Brother. We would always watch Jeff water the garden and it was nicer looking than just setting it on the ground.
This is David getting started. Some of the supplies you see here are actual home depot display racks that were nicely placed on top of their dumpster. Nothing like a good deal, but he did ask permission to take some things that were in and around their dumpster on Saturday.
You may be asking your self  "what are they doing with those little kid bikes?" Well, when we went to goodwill a few people thought we had twin boys that we were buying bikes for. That was not the case, we even had to wait to make sure someone didn't really want to purchase the bike for their kids. We actually just used the wheels off of them.
While at the Depot, I gathered most of my seeds and supplies. I read that strawberries and onions were harder to grow than the others so I got some bulbs and extra help for them. Here is the variety. I might be missing something, but you will get the gist of what we will be growing! It's very exciting.

It's coming together!

All done! It even has a handle for steering. Now we can move it all around the yard or out of the way. We still have to figure out a lining or what we will put down before planting occurs.

I came across some great spreadsheets that the $5 dinners blog put up on gardening. She has pdf's you can download and record what you are planting and when to harvest your produce. Here is a link to the blog post.

Didn't David do a great job? The total cost spent so far on building and gardening supplies: Approx. $100. Stay tuned for more planting posts in the coming weeks as we get ready to start! Pin It

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Top Three Thursday- Music

This week's top three is on music or top musical artists. I like listening to a lot of different things, but I based my choices on who I'd want to see in concert and what's in my car CD player that I am listening to. 

1.) Kellie Pickler- I went to see Taylor Swift this past September and Kellie was one of the opening acts for her. I really liked the songs she was singing so I started listening to her after that. I found out she was coming to Wild Bills (a country bar/club place out in the suburbs) that October and I bought tickets right away. I like to sit down during concerts so I had purchased tickets on the side at table number 1, seat 1 and 2. I thought I did great, but when we got there a BIG pole that holds the building up with directly in my way. I was SO disappointed and it was getting so crowded. David worked his negotiating magic for me though and got us in the VIP! I was basically on-stage on the right side. She was so close and I had the best time!! I'll share some photos from the concert.
Look how close we were!
David is the best husband ever! 
She was pointing to me, there was no one behind me or in front of me, so I'm sure about it!! Sorry the picture is bad,  I was zoomed in a lot. Okay, now that I just relived that awesome concert let's move on.

2.)Lady Antebellum- I started listening to them when they were just getting recognized last year. I just love their sound and I have a signed autograph copy of their picture in the office bookshelf thanks to Jen's Mom!! They went to hang out at her mom and dad's cottage after a concert last year!!
3.) I couldn't choose just one number three. I'll go with Carrie Underwood, Jack Johnson/Jason Mraz Pandora channel, The fray, Zach Brown Band & Mama Mia soundtrack(I know I have issues).
What are your top three? P.S. Don't stop reading my blog because of my country music choices, I can't help it, I'm in the South now!
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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Square Foot Gardening

We've been wanting to start a garden for the past couple of years. Our problem has been finding the room to have one, it has to be in full sun. When we moved in just about 3 years ago all the landscaping was pretty much done, (we're not complaining) so it's been very easy to maintain. I just love our knock-out roses that go along the side in our backyard. I can't wait to post pics when they bloom in a few months.

I started doing a little research and came across a concept of the square foot garden. You can read about it here. You build your own box (this is where David comes in), use a special soil mixture, and section off your box into 16 small squares. That means you can grow 16 different vegetables and herbs. You can have more than 1 box, but I think we will just start with one and see how it goes. This is a great way to do it since you won't get any weeds and this box can be put anywhere (on the patio or in the yard). Since spring in the south comes faster than is some places, its almost time to start planting. We will begin design and construction soon. We'll keep you posted on the progress, so stay tuned for more posts as I decide what vegetables and herbs to grow. Do you have a garden? Share with me any tips and what your favorite thing is you grow or what you would grow if you had a garden.  Here are some pics of what one will look like (random google photos).

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Sunday, March 7, 2010

Hawaiian Alfredo Pizza

We love to make our own pizzas and this is a great recipe to change things up toppings wise. We use the kitchenaid mixer to make the dough, let it rise and cook it up. We did this on the weekend since the dough has to rise an hour, it can eat up your week night. This recipe comes from The Fairhope Foodie. She has some great, easy recipes that I love. She also pairs her meals with Publix shopping trips. This is a combination of Hawaiian and Alfredo pizza.

2 Pizza Crusts (Standard Size) We used homemade dough from here
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced (optional, we left out)
3/4 cup Classico Sun-Dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce
16 oz. pineapple tidbits (or cut pineapple chunks)
1/2 cup sliced olives
1 cup sliced canadian bacon (or sliced ham)
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Parmesan Cheese

Divide alfredo sauce evenly among pizza crusts. Top with ham, sliced chicken, pineapple and sliced olives. Top with shredded cheese. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 12-15 minutes or until golden on top. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

The alfredo sauce was so yummy! 
Pizza ready to go into the oven. Molly is looking on for any droppings.

This pizza was sooo good! I would like to make it again right now! 
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