Fancy Time in Kelowna #ManteoResort #thesearethedays

After checking out of our *not fancy* hotel, we got ready to visit our cousins at their {soon to be ours} actually fancy hotel. Jonah even got his fancy manners on :

fancy manteo resort these are the days cute like me kelowna

They were both SO excited ~ in fact, when I asked Brooklyn after camping what her idea of a great holiday would be, she said, “A fancy hotel with a pool and a twirly slide!” Little did she know…

I was smitten right away. The resort itself is beautiful and huge, and the views are stunning.

Manteo resort kelowna cute like me these are the days okanagan lake

Manteo resort kelowna cute like me these are the days okanagan

The pool area, although smaller than we anticipated {considering the size of the resort}, was awesome. There was the pool with twirly waterslide {for Brooklyn, no doubt}, a splash pad and kiddie pool area, plus two small hot tubs. We all had a blast and spent the better part of 6 hours there both days.

manteo outdoor pool waterslide kelowna cute like me these are the days

We loved playing in the water with the kids and laying poolside, while watching them make memories together. And then, ordering food and drinks to the pool {like we had done in Mexico} made the kids feel extra spoiled. #spoiledrottenistheonlywaytobe

Merman these are the days cute like me manteo kelowna

{Sidenote: Doesn’t Jonah look like a Merman?}

Because we were on the arrival list for later that day, we were able to use the facilities as hotel guests, rather than visitors of guests. I’m not sure it made a huge difference for our experience {except being able to take out towels lol}, but the staff was awesome made me feel like we were welcomed guests.

We surprised the kids finally and their reactions were perfect, though afterwards Brooklyn was a little upset we were staying two nights because she wanted to see her other cousin back at home {Seriously….kids can always find something to complain about. haha}.

Ours was a one bedroom suite {the LAST room available when I booked}, which ended up being so nice because of the kitchen ~ and of course the separate bedroom. And somehow, in that huge resort, we got booked in the room right beside my cousin! In fact, sharing a door in between our rooms, which was fabulous! But how does that happen? Crazy right?!

While there were things we would change {another day, another post}, we would stay there again. We really did have a great, relaxing time, and made some great memories. And there is no denying it is a stunning location. Our only regret really, is not having more time to discover more, both on the resort and around Kelowna.

okanagan vacation guide cute like me these are the days kelowna manteo resort

Photo from Okanagan Vacation Guide {a site I just discovered, but plan to use in the future!}

 

My new favourite kids dress #playalldaydress #brotherinnovis #brothercanada #thesearethedays

August has been filled with beaches, camping, pools and lots of sewing {on the beautiful Brother Innov-is} ! I kept my living room set up as my sewing room and enjoyed multiple Netflix marathons while sewing my little heart out. I’m anxious to play around with the embroidery features, but couldn’t stop making shirts for myself and several of the play all day dress for Brooklyn. Can you blame me?

palm tree play all day dress its always autumn these are the days cute like me girl charlee

 I used to make Brooklyn a towel dress each year {from a blog that no longer exists}, but this dress has quickly become the replacement. It’s so easy and fast…two pieces to cut out, plus elastic, and in about half an hour you’ll have the cutest play dress that can double as a swim cover. I’ve made Brooklyn 3 now and they’ve pretty much become her summer uniform.

Every Day Play Dress cute like me these are the days brother innovis brother canada

 I prefer to order my knit fabric from Girl Charlee {prices and selection *heart*}, but I found these two are my local fabric store and they were practically screaming at me to be made into dresses…add to that the prices were surprisingly reasonable, and it was a no brainer.

these are the days its always autumn play all day dress cute like me broter innovis brother canada 2 edit

I also had just enough coral/oatmeal stripe fabric {Girl Charlee} to make one for Brooklyn’s friend. They had fun at the outdoor pool sporting their *not matching but matching* dresses.

I have some serious plans to make dozens of these…DOZENS!

Sewing tip: If you are like me and don’t like to be overly meticulous {terrible, I know}, I recommend starting with striped fabric. It’s so much easier to sew the elastic on in a straight line, when you have a stripe to follow.

Otherwise, have fun! If you make one {or some}, share your photos on instagram and tag me @theseareyourdays. Also, don’t forget to give credit to @itsalwaysautumnblog and hashtag with #playalldaydress. I know she’d love to see your creations too!

family photo these are the days cute like me brother innovis brother canada play all day dress its always autumn girl charlee

Quick family snapshot from our day trip to Waterton, and Miss Brooklyn is sporting her palm tree dress!

 

 

 

 

 

T-shirts, T-shirts, Ra-Ra-Ra! #sewingfun #brotherinnovis #brothercanada #thesearethedays

Brother Canada provided me with a Brother Innov-is NQ3500D machine for trial purposes, but all opinions expressed are solely my own and do not necessarily represent or align with the views or opinions of Brother Canada.

I’m feeling a little jipped ~ how have I spent all these years not knowing that making shirts could be so easy and fun? Now that I know, it’s all I want to do. I’ve discovered a new love for knit fabric as is evidenced by the mounds that have taken over several areas of our house *oops*

pile of fabric girl charlee these are the days brother canada

And I still want more…

It all started with a post on Pinterest called *17 Absolutely Free Tshirt Sewing Patterns*  more specifically with the adorable Fun Summer Tee from iCandy Handmande. I was a bit leery at first because, quite frankly, my sewing skills are mediocre at best. But I forged ahead and was THRILLED with the results. Now if only I could have the same luck with my photography skills *eep*

I LOVED the floral/stripes combination shown on the iCandy Handmade post, I knew I had to start there. And oh my sweet goodness, I love the way it turned out. In fact, I have to force myself not to wear this particular shirt every.single.day. #truestory

fun summer tee coral floral these are the days brother canada

I wore this to work the next day and then just a couple of days later for a day spent with the in laws. In the hot summer weather, it was perfectly comfortable and airy.

coral floral icandy handmade fun summer tee these are the days brother canada

I couldn’t decide with my other floral whether to pair it with white or pink, so I did both. Ha!

navy floral fun summer tee these are the days brother canada

hot pink navy floral fun summer tee these are the days brother canada icandyhandmade

The pink one needs a bit of tweaking ~ I’m not loving the fit just yet, but I do love the combination. :)

The other day a couple of fabrics laying together caught my eye…coral stripe and lime green. I love colour ~ bright, happy colour ~ so I went for it. I feel a little like a watermelon, but the combination just makes me smile.

watermelon fun summer tee icandy handmade these are the days brother canada brother innovis

The Fun Summer Tee Pattern is so ridiculously easy to follow, I didn’t have to make any adjustments {except the pink one above}. Often times when sewing thin fabric like this, I have issues with it getting caught in the machine. But I was so happy to discover that wasn’t a problem with the Brother Innov-is. It seriously feeds the fabric through so nicely. My ultimate plan is to master the art of the double needle {the best option for knits}, I just haven’t taken the time to venture there yet. #chicken

I am having so much fun and as a result, my closet it about to be bursting at the seams…I mean, more than it already is, of course. 😉

{Go make one…or a dozen}

 

Why Going to the Gym is Easy for Me… #notwhatyouthink #thesearethedays #yearofme

I’ve always been a believer that we make time for the things that matter ~ That if something is truly important, we will FIND the time and MAKE it happen. For example, I’ve made the choice to make the time for the gym and because it’s important to me I’ve made the choice to sacrifice certain things in order to make it happen: time with friends, pedicure dates, kid-less grocery trips and a whole scad of other things I could do with an afternoon to myself.

go work out year of me cute like me working out

Sometimes this is only half the equation

BUT…I think it would be really unfair and a wee bit self righteous to claim that that is the only factor, that the only reason I’m able to go to the gym is because it’s important enough to me.

The truth is there are other reasons that going to the gym is not only possible, but easy for me right now:

1. I work part time allowing me the ability to spend my afternoon at the gym.

2. My kids are in school full time making my afternoon workouts possible and making it so they don’t take time away from our family time.

3. We can afford it. Yes it’s just $30 a month at my gym, but there was a time not too long ago, that even that would have been an unnecessary expense. No you don’t need a gym and for a long time I did home videos, but this time my goals are very specific and do require time at a gym.

4. The Captain is AMAZING and incredibly supportive. He is easily the biggest reason I have been able to commit to this. It’s not just about supporting my time at the gym either, he’s really stepped up to help even more around the house and with the kids.

walk outside get outside year of me these are the days

In the beginning, day 7 was *walk outside* day and it was easily my favourite.

Look, I wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t important to me and if I didn’t have goals set, but at the end of the day I wouldn’t be ABLE to do this if it weren’t for the factors mentioned above and the support from the Captain. I’ve been a gym member 3 other times over the past 10 years and, each time there were different reasons it was both easy and difficult. And different reasons it didn’t last, but for the first time I actually feel like I am able to make this a permanent lifestyle. In addition to my commitment and motivation, everything is working together to make it work.

So go easy on yourself. Because even if it is important to you, other factors have to fall into play in order for it to work. Do what you can and when you can, do more. That’s it…as simple as that.

Reversible Sling Bags with the Brother Innov-is #sewingfun #brotherinnovis #thesearethedays #sugarbeecrafts

For years I’ve had several coordinating fabric sets just waiting to be used, so when I saw this project on Pinterest I knew I had to give it a try. So I set out to make one.

What I didn’t anticipate was making 5.

sewing troubles

I printed out the Reversible Sling Bag Pattern from Sugar Bee Crafts. I didn’t have enough of the fabric to cut the pieces on the fold, so I tried cutting 4 separate pieces instead {which I’ve since discovered I prefer anyways}. For some reason this had me all sorts of turned around and I ended up cutting pieces the wrong way and sewing them together wrong {so weird}, which resulted in becoming well acquainted with the seam ripper. #frustrating

Literally hours were spent on this first one and although there is no real rhyme or reason to the placement of the 3 different fabrics, I love how it turned out.

cross body bag 2I mean, how cute it this!!!!

I knew I wanted to make another one, mainly to redeem myself. haha

I kept to my preference of not using the liner (I don’t think it needs it) and cutting 4 pieces instead of 2 (I love the way a top stitched seam looks) and set to work.

cross body bag

The seams look so clean and finished with a top stitch.

And then I made 3 more. Ha! Once I had all the pieces cut it was only about an hour to complete, due in large part to the smoothness of this awesome machine. I’m honestly in love.

Earlier in June, I was watching my cousin’s two youngest kids for the week and they both asked for one. Miss M picked the fabric for hers and was THRILLED when it was finished, wearing it everywhere we went.

cross body bag girl cute like me sugar bee crafts brother innovis

Not to be left out, her little brother also wanted one. He’s big into superheroes, so Superman was no surprise. And he was SO excited to have a bag to carry his doggy in!

cross body bag boy cute like me sugar bee crafts brother innovis

Can you see why I had to make one more?

cross body bag 3I don’t have a photo of this bag with the recipient yet, so for now here’s a swatch of the adorable Hello Kitty fabric I used.

Now my only task is to make one sized perfectly for me to use this summer as a beach bag. Not to mention the long list of sewing projects that I’m anxious to try. Just wait until I get my hands on the embroidery functions ~ *squeal*

Brother Innovis NQ3500D cute like me

Photo used with permission from website

Disclaimer: Brother Canada provided me with a Brother Innov-is NQ3500D machine for trial purposes, but all opinions expressed are solely my own and do not necessarily represent or align with the views or opinions of Brother Canada.

In Case You Haven’t Heard… #brothercanada #sewingfun #thesearethedays

Recently this beauty came to live at my house…in my living room to be exact.

Brother Innovis Brother Canada Cute Like Me

And she is lovely!

As luck would have it this is my busiest time of year, so I haven’t been able to spend hours and hours figuring her out. BUT do not fret, I have next week off {the first week of June} and she will be mine….ALL mine!

Brother Innovis Brother Canada Cute LIke Me 3

For now I started with something basic using my Girl Charlee Knitfix Fabric from November and a simple Maxi skirt pattern {Amy} also from Girl Charlee. Brooklyn requests a knee length version and I was able to whip this one up before Church a couple of weeks ago. It was a good way to test the pattern using the 4 piece method…while I much prefer the two piece method, I’m glad to see how visible the additional seams are {or aren’t}. It’s only close up that you can really see any mismatch of the pattern.

Brother Innovis Brother Canada Cute LIke Me Girl Charlee Fabrics

I can’t wait to make her multiple mini maxi’s just like this, but first I need to put the decorative and embroidery functions of this machine to good use.

I’m never going to want to give her back…

Giving Proofs of Love #thesearethedays #happinessproject

 

I know in the book that February’s main focus was on Marriage ~ Giving Proofs of Love to your spouse. And while I love that and continue to make the Captain my main focus, I’m also implementing the same effort into other people {and animals} in my life.

Give Proofs of Love happiness project cute like me these are the days

 

1. The Way to a Man’s Heart is Through His Stomach

*Really, the way to anyone’s heart I’d say! 😉

One of the biggest ways that I give proofs of love is through food. I LOVE to cook…for myself, my family, and our friends. I love creating a fun and healthy platter for the kids and their friends, having people over for dinner, trying a new meal, making a fun dessert, or recently, even making raw meals for my dogs. I’ve said it for a long time, but I mean it: The kitchen is my happy place. When I am there I am at my best. I’m not a chef by any stretch {the kids on Master Chef Junior put me to shame in a huge way}, but cooking is something I enjoy. I also happen to love grocery shopping because I get excited to have all the new and fresh food in my house. lol

baked garlic cheddar chicken kitchme these are the days cute like me

This delicious Baked Garlic Cheddar Chicken from Kitchme is our most recent favorite. Even the kids can’t get enough!

Another way that I give proofs of love with regards to the Captain, is by serving him. I mean physically serving him his meal. He’s never expected it and is always genuinely surprised when I hand him his plate, which is definitely part of the fun. Look, the man works hard..and for many years he was doing it so I could stay home with our kids {eating bonbons, of course}. I don’t take that lightly. When he would come home for lunch, I know it meant a lot to not only not have to prepare his own lunch, but also not have to plate it. He could sit down, relax and eat. And I LOVED having something prepared that just hit the spot. Same with dinner…I wasn’t always good about having it ready as soon as he got home, but I sure tried. Now, with him working away, these things aren’t as common. But the man still works hard {incredibly hard} and I know, after a long shift, the last thing he wants to do is try and figure out what to eat. As I’ve discussed previously, I send him with meals so once he’s done his shift he can shower, eat, and go to sleep. And I always try to have breakfast or leftovers ready for him when he returns home from his rotation, because otherwise he gets busy and doesn’t eat!

Okay, so we’ve established that I like to feed people.

2. Playtime

*I want more time to play. Less time of running to everything…and more just hanging out. As the weather gets warmer, I want us out riding our bikes, going for walks, and taking the dogs for a run in the field. This is a proof of love that, as I put the effort in, comes back. We all benefit because we all contribute. Plus, we’ll also be making memories, which is perhaps the best part of all!

bike ride cute like me these are the days happiness project

This kid loves to be outside all the time.

The Kids:

*I admit we are a home-cozy family, so it can be important to make sure there are fun activities to do so they aren’t just wasting away on ipods/ipads.

science experiment

Jonah BEGGED for a science experiment kit from the school book orders and I finally agreed to buy it, thinking it would just get forgotten. But they seriously do it nearly every day. It has been a great source of memories and fun. In this photo they made vampire blood.

*I plan to play more games with them. For Christmas they got The Game of Life and Operation, and we’ve had a lot of fun playing both of them. I love the time we put aside our other tasks, put down our phones, and just connect.

3. Snuggle Time

*I love snuggling. The kids love snuggling. I love when they curl up with me on the couch or even just come over for a hug and a kiss. And although sometimes there are other things to do, I {we} love ending every night laying with them, hearing about their day {do anyone else’s kids get super chatty at bedtime?}. It’s a pretty amazing time and we’ve had several honest and real conversations as a result.

snuggle session cute like me these are the days happiness project once upon a time

Late night snuggle sesh watching Once Upon a Time.

We’ve been known to have *family sleepovers* when the Captain is away, and often they will sneak up after bedtime because *they can’t sleep*! Sometimes if I wake up in the middle of the night I will go get one {or both} of them to snuggle with. It’s a real problem we have. 😉

4. Down Time

*We don’t always have to be going somewhere or doing something. Down time is just as important…we can all be doing something different, but as long as we’re in the same room or same house even, it counts. Some of our greatest memories come from the time we spend putzing around and relaxing.

rockband beatles these are the days cute like me the captain my happiness project

I came home from the gym to them jamming together, playing Rockband: The Beatles.

 5. Date Time

*I’m not talking about getting a sitter and going out date time, although that’s nice too. But honestly, I find we are more *family daters* than anything and love to take our kids on mini dates. Because the Captain is gone, it’s difficult to justify taking more time away from the kids, though of course we do for certain things. But we love all kinds of dates: slurpees, ice cream, candy store, restaurant, and even stay at home – popcorn, milkshake, snow cones and movies kind of dates.

candy store date cute like me these are the days my happiness project

After an emotional Celebration of life for a friend of mine, I found that I didn’t want to just go home and lose the rest of the day. So we took the kids to the local candy store to make memories instead.

 

6. Getaway Time

*Several years ago, while talking about our parenting/family vision, we both felt that making getaways a priority was important to building and maintaining strong relationships with our kids. It doesn’t have to be an airplane to Mexico every time, though we wouldn’t complain, but every kind of getaway: Camping {even in the backyard}, the condo {whitefish}, our recent getaway to Canmore, or even quick day trips ~ date and getaway all in one!

canmore cute like me these are the days making memories happiness project

For Christmas we decided to take the kids on a short getaway instead of buying several little presents. It was our best idea yet and we had such an amazing time!

7. Dog Time

*Yes, Malibu and Axel deserve our love and attention too. It can be a lot sometimes, caring for them in addition to everything else. But I am glad they are a part of our family and I love the days I make the time to spend playing with them. I try to every day, but it doesn’t always work. And there is a noticeable difference in how antsy Malibu, in particular, is on the days I don’t. They are big dogs and, despite having a big backyard, it’s not enough just being on their own. So they have really become a focus of mine/ours since the beginning of the year.

playtime with the dogs malibu axel these are the days cute like me

Malibu is nuts. That is all.

Now, there is one more person on my list that I need to make sure also gets proofs of love: ME! But that is a whole different blog post. It might seem silly, but it’s true. We need to take care of ourselves as well and I have been really making myself an additional focus since starting this Happiness Project. This quote from Buddha that I shared a while back on Instagram for a #SundaySays sums it up perfectly.

How do you show proofs of love? 

compassion cute like me these are the days buddha

 

{My}Happiness Project ~ March #thesearethedays #happinessproject #aimhigher

Aren’t you proud of me ~ getting this post up at the beginning of the month!? I know, I’m impressed too 😉

Update: No need to be too impressed….I wrote the post but didn’t publish it until now. oops.

I’m really excited for the focus this month and can’t wait to implement it.

AIM HIGHER

I know, pretty broad right? Aim Higher ~ what does that mean? In her book, My Happiness Project, Gretchen Rubin narrowed it down to these 5 areas:

* Launch a Blog

* Enjoy the fun of failure

* Ask for help

* Work Smart

* Enjoy now

These were the 5 areas that Gretchen felt needed the most focus for aiming higher. As you know, I’ve decided to follow along on HER plan for my own project, modifying along the way as needed. So many times throughout the book I found myself nodding in agreement, seeing so many similarities between her and I.

As an example, Gretchen says that when she’s feeling blue, working cheers her. In fact, sometimes when she’s in a bad mood, her husband will suggest she go into her office for a while.

I totally understand. I have a few *happy places* in my life, and writing/blogging is certainly one of them. Which leads me to the first on the list:

Launch a Blog ~ Obviously I don’t need to start one, but I do want to improve it. I want to write more frequently, and like Gretchen, spending time doing that, cheers me. I LOVE it! Some of you may remember when I ordered my new laptop last year. After dealing with repeated laptop issues and ultimately not having one that worked, I had had enough. So I ordered a new one from Amazon and awaited our next Condo trip to meet my new friend. Because my needs are fairly minimal {ie. I need it just for basic browsing and blogging, not gaming or anything like that} I didn’t have to look for anything too high-tech. I decided on a Lenovo Chromebook with touch screen. And it’s good, but I have to be honest and say that I didn’t realize how much I would miss Microsoft Office and the ability to save and crop photos the way I’m used to.

Then, for the second time in the past couple of months, it stopped letting me log in under my account and would only let me browse as a guest. Which is *fine* except it doesn’t remember anything. *UGH* I have a blog post waiting in the queue but I have some photos in it that I want to crop before I publish it, and being frustrated at not being able to resulted in me browsing laptops on Amazon again. And then I ordered this beauty and I once again awaited my upcoming Condo trip to get my hands on her.

She's as awesome as I hoped she'd be

Isn’t she lovely…isn’t she wonderful.

My blogging world is finally complete…or at least just a whole lot easier.

Enjoy the fun in failure ~ I think for me personally, it makes more sense to label this *Enjoy the fun in trying*. Failure isn’t something that necessarily worries or scares me, so I don’t have difficulty accepting it as an option. But, while it can be difficult to find/make the time, trying something new energizes and excites me.

I will have more details in the coming weeks and months on the first task on my list.

Ask for Help ~ Oh my, this one is difficult for me. I’m not good at it at all and would rather just find a way to get things done myself. This is also why I know my limits when it comes to volunteering for things or committing to attending things…if I can’t reasonably do it myself with minimal conflict or hassle, then I don’t. And I don’t feel guilty for it honestly. As I’ve discussed before, my main focus is the kids and work {and the Captain when he’s home of course}…and at the heart of it all, my sanity. I know when to say no and I know when I need to step back and *hibernate* for a while.

moustache pyjama pants pattern from my cotton creations

I finally got some sewing done

Work Smart ~ I don’t believe in multi-tasking, but I do believe in effective prioritizing. I’m fairly decent at doing this with the house chores ~ switching the laundry first, then unloading, loading and starting the dishwasher, and then making lunch or sitting down to fold the load I took out from the dryer. Essentially a few things are going on at once, but only as a result of proper prioritizing. I need to get better about this with my blog. Sometimes I just browse and don’t make any real progress. But that is going to change. I’ve been googling like crazy {as I always do}, looking things up on Pinterest {that site is a gem} and making sure I spend my time actually blogging. I always have numerous posts crafted in my head but I have difficulty transferring them to here. It may seem strange, but having my new laptop will also help with this. I can organize my files and create the quality I want to.

Enjoy Now ~ Carpe Diem ~ Seize the Day ~ Live the Moment….it’s all the same right? I try to do this in my life for sure, but it’s always a good reminder. Recently I’ve been trying to have an even greater awareness by staying off my phone in certain situations: when friends come for dinner and games, when I’m at a lunch date, while spending time with the kids {except taking photos}, etc. I’m faaaaaaar from perfect, but these are a few ways I have felt like I can be more IN the moment. Sometimes when we are doing something as a family, I’ll take a few photos at the beginning to document and then put it away so I can really be a part of the action.

Swimming at Ptarmigan  Village

This kid LOVES to swim {Photo taken by my cousin, so  I can’t take credit}

Last week, while at the condo, my cousin and I took the 11 kids swimming, while our other two cousins were at the gym. With 11 kids ages 2-10, you might think it was a recipe for disaster, but it was honestly a fun and easy task. The biggest reason: We were IN the moment. We weren’t sitting on the sidelines, busy on our phones. We were IN the water. The oldest kids could swim, so that helped. The two middle aged kids {5) stayed close to the shallow platform {the pool at Ptarmigan Village is MADE for families with small children and is the #1 reason our kids learned how to swim!}. And of the 4 littles, 3 were in life jackets and I stayed in the water with the one who wasn’t. It was such a fun way to pass the time and the kids had a blast. And we both enjoyed bonding with our nieces and nephews {first cousins once removed if we want to get specific}.

So now the plan for March is to aim even higher. As I’m finishing up this blog post I’m planning to spend some time with the kids, WITHOUT my phone. It’s much too easy to get caught up with the relaxing world of iPads and computers, non? I’m also working on a bit of a personal project that fits right into my personal declaration that this is the *Year of Me*. As mentioned, I’ll update more as it goes along. Two things that are involved are tanning and massages, so just yesterday I went for a water massage {to try it out} and spent some time at the tanning salon. Both were divine and soon to be repeated. :)

I can’t make any promises that I’ll get better at asking for help, but I can commit to my efforts to working smarter. And of course to *enjoying the now*.

What things would you add to your list to Aim Higher?

 

 

Yellow Pepper Salsa #thesearethedays #makeyummyfood

I just made this and I can’t wait to try it on top of my chicken with it! Mmmmmm

I have posted this recipe before but after looking through my old post I realized it was not great, so I’ve deleted that post and I’m doing it again. This recipe is intended to be cooked and canned, but I love it fresh as well, which as a former tomato hater is HUGE! 

Yellow Pepper Salsa Cute Like Me Blog

Yellow Pepper Salsa {Recipe came from a friend, so I can’t even take credit!}

2 cups chopped yellow peppers

2 cups chopped peeled tomatoes {no need to peel them if you are eating it fresh}

1/2 cup finely chopped red onion

2 large cloves of garlic, minced

1/4 cup lime juice

1 Tbsp white vinegar

Mild: 3 jalapenos and 1/4 cup green or red pepper

Medium: 3 jalapenos and 2 Anaheim peppers

Hot: 3 jalapenos, 2 Anaheim peppers and 1 habanero peppers

**Make sure the hot peppers are seeded**

1/2 tsp coarse pickling salt {skip this for fresh}

2 Tbsp finely chopped cilantro

 

Add all the ingredients {except Cilantro} and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and boil gently uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in cilantro and cook for 2 minutes. Ladle into hot jars and process for 20 minutes {I always skip this step}. Makes about 4x250mL

 

For fresh I just mix everything up and a bit of Lawry’s seasoning salt. ENJOY!!!!

 

Feeding the Captain #thesearethedays #makeyummyfood

Usually when the kids and I go away without the Captain, I like to leave prepared meals for him in the fridge. So while we are here enjoying the condo, I left meals for him as usual, but also some food in the freezer for his next rotation ~ Here’s what I made:

1. Lasagna  ~ I don’t have a recipe or a photo, but I should get both. It doesn’t seem to matter how many lasagna’s I try, this one remains my favorite. Pretty basic and simple but hits all the points of YUM! 😉

Okay, I can give you a bit of a recipe….I make pretty basic meat sauce with ground beef and Prego {with mushrooms} sauce. I add garlic salt, Italian seasoning, and parmesan cheese to the sauce for added flavour. I sort of eyeball it and just sprinkle it around, so I don’t have exact measurements. I also add about a cup of water to add some more moisture for the *oven ready* noodles I’ve become a huge fan of! In a separate bowl I mix a large Cottage Cheese with 1- 2 eggs and about 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese.

In a casserole dish I layer, starting with a small amount of meat sauce. The noodles are next (3), then half of the meat sauce and half of the cottage cheese mixture. 3 more noodles, and remaining meat sauce and cottage cheese mixture. Top with 3-4 noodles (depends on the width of your dish). I add a bit of water to the top (to help the top noodles cook) and bake for about 40 minutes at 350, covered with tin foil. Then I top with mozzarella and bake for another 15-20 minutes, until the cheese is delicious and bubbly ~ I even like to overcook it a bit so the noodles get a bit crispy. Mmmmmm This was the perfect meal to pop in the freezer for his next work rotation.

2. Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Photo from website

Photo from website

Know Kitchen really hit the mark with this delicious recipe. Because of the ham, I didn’t want to freeze it for Brent to take, so it went in the fridge for him to eat while we are gone. But I always take a bite ~ Baker’s Bite ~ and I LOVED it! Definitely worth trying and add a salad and a side veggie and you’ve got a great dish to serve company.

3. Funeral Potatoes {aka Hashbrown Casserole}

Photo from website

Photo from website

This recipe, from Lil’ Luna, is the closest one to mine I can find online. But this time I had to make a few alterations based on my ingredients. I had a couple leftover chicken breasts so I cubed them up and added them to the hashbrowns. I also didn’t have cream of chicken soup on hand {outrageous}, so I used two cans of cream of mushroom. I like the sauciness using two cans gives, so I usually use one cream of chicken and one cream of mushroom. I bought some Corn Flake crumbs so I used those for the topping…the only difference there is the size of the flakes/crumbs. I took one small bite before packing it away for the freezer and I was definitely happy. This will make a great meal for the Captain!

4. Daddy’s Hamburgers

Oh sweet mercy. I’ve made these about 5 times since the first time and they are just as delicious each time. I love me a good burger and have been searching for the perfect homemade recipe for years now. I am absolutely taken with this one and couldn’t help but make it for the Captain as well. It’s so incredibly fast ~ prep and cooking ~ and so ridiculously delicious. Great, now I want one. It’s after midnight and I want to whip up a batch of burgers! oy.

Photo from website

Photo from website

I do a few things differently, but the secret remains the same. First I add bread crumbs and an egg to the hamburger. I also add the garlic salt and Worcestershire sauce TO the mixture instead of just on each patty afterwards. I follow the rest and wait impatiently while they cook. The secret of course is the X drizzled with a small amount of Worcestershire and sprinkled with garlic salt…..THEN topped with a small chunk of butter/margarine {I think the Worcestershire and margarine is the REAL secret}. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 350, top with cheese and put back in until melted…and then DEVOUR! Oh also, I did not bake mine on the bun.

I’m not kidding. They are THAT good! I will be a Foodie Crush regular as a direct result of finding THIS recipe on Pinterest.

There were 3 other things I had planned on making but just didn’t get to. I’ll make sure to try them soon so I can pass on any more winners! Hopefully this helps take out some of the guess work when you are wanting to try a new recipe. Now I just have to keep my fingers crossed you like them as much as I do!

Happy Cooking!