Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Pumpkin Pasta Sauce

Pumpkin coffee creamer... Pumpkin candles... Pumpkin desserts... PUMPKIN, PUMPKIN, PUMPKIN!!!!! I think that when you type "define Fall" into your search engine, pumpkin should pop up! Haha. I love pretty much ANYTHING pumpkin! I have an awesome Pumpkin Cheesecake recipe that I will share later on down the road. And if you haven't tried the recipe here on my blog for Dinner In A Pumpkin yet, well, you've gotta! I have never really thought of pumpkin as a "dinner" food, but that recipe is delicious! Which brings me to this new one... Pumpkin Pasta Sauce! I was so excited to try this & oh man, it is AWESOME! Simple & fresh! I adapted this recipe from Sole for the Soul. She has a whole index of good recipes! I couldn't find ravioli at the commissary, they were out...apparently every one else on base wanted ravioli the same day we did. Lol. Anyways, I improvised & used a mixture of spinach & cheese tortellin, paired with a nice glass of bubbly...it was WONDERFUL! Mr.Hooah definitely went back for seconds! I twisted this recipe up a bit so I hope you enjoy this as much as we did! 
-X's & O's for now...

Pumpkin Pasta Sauce
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  • 1/4 c. butter
  • 1 medium-sized shallot, minced (or 1/2 a small onion)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 c. chicken stock
  • 3/4 c. milk (I used half & half)
  • 1 1/4 t. salt, more or less to taste
  • 1/2 t. black pepper, more or less to taste
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg
  • 1/4 c. diced parsley
  • 1Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1/2-1c. spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. italian seasoning
1. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic; cook for 2-3 minutes, until shallots are tender.
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2. Reduce heat to low and stir in the pumpkin puree. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock, milk, salt, chili powder, italian seasoning, pepper and nutmeg. Stir to combine and simmer over low heat for about 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper, if needed. Stir in the parsley & spinach. Serve over pasta.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Crockpot Chicken & Dumplings

I apologize for being MIA the past few weeks... there was so much going on & I did not have internet back home. Since being back, I've tried to change up our dinner menu for this lovely fall weather...you know, the "warm & hearty" good stuff! I also have been trying to do a smaller budget on groceries this month so that we'll have the extra moolah for Hal-o-Scream at Busch Gardens this month as well! Mr.Hooah & I were lucky to have won a 4 day vacation package at the Williamsburg Plantation in VA & we are so stoked! I honestly can't tell you how bad I've needed this, Mr.Hooah especially! So, to my point of post, Chicken & Dumplings... this meal is cheap & it makes enough to eat left overs the next night or even freeze for later (make sure to wait on putting in the biscuits if you plan on freezing)! This would be good for kids as well, the veggies are somewhat "hidden", if you must, because when you use a hand-mixer to shred the chicken, I usually just stick it in the crock pot & go( CAUTION: be careful not to splash it all over yourself, it is HOT!)...it mushes up the veggies a bit & it all blends together! Mr.Hooah & I absolutely LOVE this recipe & whenever the weather turns chilly, this is one of our favorite go-to comfort foods! Rib sticking good I tell ya!
-XO for now!

Crockpot Chicken & Dumplings
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1 large can cream of chicken soup
1 can of biscuits(I use Pillsbury grands)
1- 1 1/2c. frozen mixed veggies (peas,carrots,greenbeans,corn mix)
1 pk. boneless skinless chicken breast (about 1lb.,the small pack with just 3pcs)
1/2 can water
1tsp. minced garlic 
salt & pepper
**McCormicks Beer Can Chicken seasoning if you have it, is DELICIOUS, I add in a cap full or so** 
  • Preheat crockpot on High.
  • Clean your chicken then lay it in the crock pot & season with salt, pepper, garlic & beer can chicken seasoning. Sprinkle frozen veggies over top. Spoon the cream of chicken soup over top. Pour the water over that. Cook 2-3hrs or until chicken is cooked through. 
  • Use a hand-mixer to shred the chicken. Then cut biscuits into fours or bite size pieces, add chicken back to mixture & add biscuits on top. Cook until biscuits are done. I usually stir once or twice.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Veggie Meatballs

OH EMM GHEE... getting Mr.Hooah to eat veggies is as easy as trying to give Yoki (our demonic cat) medication. He scrunches his nose up like a 4 year old whose mother tells him to eat his vegetables or he won't get dessert... Me though? Oh I love vegetables. I pretty much love all veggies & fruits, well, except mangoes...I know I do not have to explain myself to you guys, but yes, yes, I do...Mangoes, for some odd awful reason, taste like the smell of armpits to me, so I refuse. LOL, please tell me I am not the only one person who thinks this! I don't know why I think that but it's what I think, I know, I probably sound like a crazy person, but it's true! I always try to find new ways to sneak in veggies & this is one awesome new way I found & thought I would share because I know there are some picky little eaters out there who are much more picky than my Mr.Hooah! I found this recipe on pinterest & wrote it down, stashed it away in my cook book (which consists of a binder full of sheet protected notebook paper recipes lol) & recently ran across it, it had a couple of other ones along with it, but I have only tried this one & the Spicy Honey one. I must say, I have never just been one of those people who eats meatballs as a "meal".. We have a friend who is a single father & he makes "porcupine meatballs" (meatballs with rice mixed in) with mashed potatoes & mac-n-cheese for his daughter & she absolutely LOVES them. I suppose you could do this, but for us, I chose to go Italian & toss them in with some pasta. Mr.Hooah had ordered a "make your own pasta bowl" from Olive Garden a few weeks ago & I can't lie, for it to have been sausage meatballs & alfredo, it was DELICIOOO! So I thought I would attempt to recreate something similar to this & added crushed red pepper into the meatball mixture to make it spicy & give it that kick that the OG meatballs had. Let's just say, for this to be a thrown together meal, Mr.Hooah LOVED it & even went as far to say that THIS (amongst all the other delicious meals that I make, he had to choose this one *le sigh* haha) is his favorite meal now! You can't even taste the veggies inside ither! And because they're made with turkey & baked, it doesn't get much healthier than that & I am positive that the calories are MUCH LESS than those of OG! So, MOVE OVER Olive Garden, there's a new Italian Chef in town & she doesn't charge an arm & leg for pasta bowls! Haha. Ok, maybe that was a little too much...
 *awkward silence
Hope you guys enjoy this & if you make it let me know how you like it!

Veggie Meatballs
 (Makes 48 Meatballs)
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16oz. lean ground turkey
1 carrot, peeled & grated
1 zucchini, peeled & grated
1/2 c. Italian seasoned bread crumbs (I personally added in more, it was about a cup rather than half)
2 TBSP. ketchup
1 egg
1 TBSP. onion powder
1 TBSP. garlic powder 
1 tsp. salt 
1 tsp. pepper
**And for those of you who like spice, add in 1tsp. or more of crushed red pepper flakes!**
  • Preheat oven to 350'.. Line baking sheet with foil & set aside.
  • In large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix until combined but do not over mix (that will make your meatballs tough & nobody likes a tough meatball!) Using a tablespoon, scoop to portion & lightly form into balls.
  • Place on baking sheet, make sure they are not touching & bake 20 minutes or until brown. (Here is my tip...flip them half way through baking, then when the 20mins are up, I personally like to turn the broiler on HIGH & brown them a little more..just make sure to keep an eye on them so they don't burn! Also, we ate these over whole wheat penne pasta with a light alfredo sauce & it was bomb!)

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Cold Kicker Soup! (aka Mexican Chicken & Rice Soup)

The weather is in full chaotic swing...cold, mild, completely freezing! With that being said, I know it's the "time of year" that I catch some sort of cold & I want to share my secret with all of you. What can I say besides "My IMMUNE system hates me!" Lol. Usually when I get sick, it takes me forever to start feeling better because my immune system isn't exactly top of the line. Once when I was sick, my Gran-Gran told my Aunt Sherry she should grab me a cup of Chicken Soup from the Mexican restaurant in town because it always made her feel better...And she did...It was really good & seriously made me feel 10x better!!! So, from that day on, anytime I got sick, the soup did the trick. Since moving up here to NC, Mexican cuisine is good & all, but when it came to getting sick & Mr.Hooah (being THE BEST husband in the whole entire world tee-hee) going to get me the soup, only ONE place even knew what he was asking about. Sadly, the soup wasn't as good as what I had back home though. I told Mr.Hooah for $7 a cup, that I could make a whole pot for about that with what I had on hand & it'd be way better! So, not to toot my own horn or anything, but, MOVE OVER Mexican Restaurants, Chef CiCi's mastered this! Haha. This soup is AMAZING...It isn't a heavy soup but it warms you through & anytime Mr.Hooah & I, or anyone I know is feeling icky, I put on a pot of this "miracle" soup...Ok, so maybe it doesn't really have mystical powers that can cure major illnesses or make miracles happen, but it sure will make you feel better when the common cold is floating amuck, just ask Mr.Hooah(who also just got over the flu, bless him)! 
I hope that you'll try this recipe even if you aren't sick because it is just too yummy!
-XO for now! 

Mexican Chicken & Rice Soup
(aka The Cold Kicker Soup)
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1 pot of water with 3TBSP. Chicken Base Paste
(Or 3 boxes of Chicken Stock) 
3 Chicken Breasts, boneless, skinless
2-3 TBSP. minced garlic
1 onion, roughly diced
Handful of Cilantro, chopped
1 avocado, roughly chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 can mild Rotel
1 1/2 c. Brown Rice, minute rice is best
1 lime sliced or lime juice 
Dash of Webster's Beer Can Chicken Seasoning
(or in my case 5! we love this stuff!)
  • Add water & chicken paste(if not using the boxed chicken stock), EVOO, garlic, chicken, & onions. Bring to a boil. Add in seasoning, salt & pepper, & Rotel. Cover with a vented lid (if you don't have a vented lid, you can just put a lid almost all the way on) & let simmer for an hour. The longer it cooks, the better it tastes though!
  • Remove the chicken from pot & shred. Add back to soup. Add in rice & cook according to package. When Rice is done, add in diced avocado & cilantro & let cook another 4-5minutes. 
  • Serve with lime wedges to squeeze over soup or sprinkle a little bottled lime juice over top. Good ither way! Eat, Enjoy, & kick that cold's butt! haha! (:

Thursday, September 4, 2014


I love baking sweets.... AND eating them! haha! I am not as active with the FRG (the Family Readiness Group, a "support/information" group at Mr.Hooah's job) as I should be, but when it comes to donating or bake sales, I always participate! I always make several batches of cookies, brownies, or cupcakes for the sale & Mr.Hooah always comes home empty handed, so I guess that means I'm doing something right huh?! I don't know where I get it from...oh wait, yes I do, my Aunt Sherry...but I LOVE to bake & I bake often! Just call me the Cupcake Queen! Haha. At one point I wanted to go on Cupcake Wars, but they probably would have laughed me off the set...I'm a Food Network Star in my own kitchen but when it comes to being a pro, I think it's safe to say they would list me as an amateur! Lol. I absolutely love this recipe I am sharing, mostly because Blondies of any sort are my absolute fav type of brownie/cookie bar! They're easy, you can throw anything & everything but the kitchen sink in those babies, & you just can't mess them up! I have been behind on the times apparently, because to my surprise, everyone these days (or per Pinterest activity) is using boxed cake mixes to "skip steps" on ingredients & to cut down on prep time...After trying a few cake mix recipes myself, I too, am now a believer! This recipe has been a good one to make especially for the bake sales on base for our battery functions... it is deliciously ooey-gooey & sweet. I honestly think they sell so well because the soldiers see the sprinkles & think it's something fancy...hmmm, maybe they are a little fancy with their ooey-gooey pretty colored sprinklie-ness haha. These are seriously fun for people of all ages & with only 6 ingredients, these are my go-to goodies for Mr.Hooah to take to work anytime! 
- ~*.*~Sprinkly X's & O's!~*.*~

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1 Box yellow cake mix
1/4 c. vegetable or canola oil
1 large egg
1/3-1/2 c. milk (less is best)
1/2 c. sprinkles
1/2 c. white chocolate chips
(I also throw in M&M's sometimes, I honestly think you can mix in whatever you want as long as it will work with the recipe!)
  • Preheat oven to 350'...spray an 11x7 baking pan with non-stick spray, set aside.
  •  Combine first 4 ingredients in large bowl, add milk slowly because you want the batter to be as dense as possible. Mix in the sprinkles & white chocolate chips.
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  • Pour into the prepped baking dish, sprinkle a handful more of the sprinkles over top & then bake for 25-30mins until edges are just turning golden-brown.
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***TIPS: Allow to cool at least 30mins so the center can set before cutting into squares. Also, do not use black sprinkles, it will turn the batter black!***

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Blueberry Barbeque Sauce

As we all know, Fall is knocking on the door! I have to say that even though I LOVE the fall, I'm kind of sad to see summer go! So, as summer continues to wind down, we've been BBQ'ing, A LOT! And I have a new BBQ sauce that I recently found over at Grilling Companion & wanted to share! This Blueberry Barbecue Sauce is not only easy peasy but DELISH too! It is something Mr.Hooah & all of our friends had never had before, & though it sounds kind of weird, we were NOT disappointed! We used it on our grilled chicken & turkey burgers, so I imagine it is good on any grilled meat. It has a little kick with the cayenne pepper (we put extra), & though it may sound like it might be super sweet, it isn't. It's the perfect amount of sweet-savory-blueberrines.. haha! I definitely say, that while blueberries are still in season & you can get them fresh, you need to try this recipe! However, if I get a craving for this in the winter months, I'm thinking it won't hurt to cheat & use frozen blueberries! It was definitely a hit at our Labor Day BBQ!
-XO! XO!
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Blueberry Barbeque Sauce
2 c. fresh blueberries
1/2 c. balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
2 TBSP. red onion, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
3 TBSP. ketchup
3 TBSP. sugar
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped (I used 1 TBSP. minced garlic)
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. chili powder
  • Combine all of the ingredients in a medium sauce pan & heat over medium-high heat.
  • Once you hit the boiling point, turn the heat down & simmer for about 15minutes, until sauce begins to thicken, stirring occasionally. 
  • Remove the pan from the heat & allow to cool.
  • Pour into a blender & blend until liquified. 
  • Brush the blueberry barbeque sauce over grilled chicken, pork chops, ribs, burgers...& even serve some extra sauce on the side too!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

China Cabinet Revamp

I posted a few posts ago, about my unhealthy distressing addiction. I bought that sweet little desk off of Craigslist & the lady also had this gorgeous little china cabinet for sale too when we got there.
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 I had a fit over it, Mr.Hooah said not just no but HELL NO (haha just kidding) ONE PROJECT AT A TIME, & then I threw a fit...just kidding again. But we did tell her that if she had it by the time I was finished with my sweet little desk (see it here: Distressing Addiction), that we would be back for it! Needless to say, not only was I determined to finish the desk ASAP so that I could get it in our house, but I was also driven to finish so that I could find out if she still had the china cabinet....And JUST MY LUCK, she did! Lol. I am in a MAJOR teal phase. Our house was a brown, red, almost a rustic type of theme, but I wanted a change. (Mr.Hooah said he gives it 6 months before I decide to change it up again, lol. Insatiable I am!) Something more bright, to open up our small living room. I went with a color called Swizzle Stick. It is an awesome blue. I cannot even describe it but I LOVE it! I'll try to post pics soon, promise! Now everything is crisp & a little more rusticy-french..<---I don't even know if that is even actually a thing, but, well, you know! Haha! It took much longer on the china cabinet than the desk... but it was definitely worth it in the end! Distressing for me is all about layering the paint so that when you sand it, it shines through. I went with a golden yellow the first few coats, then I used a few swipes of this Fuchsia Flocka Pink in the areas I wanted to sand down for it to show through, then lastly was the teal color I scored on clearance at Lowe's! Woot! And I aslo must share that Hobby Lobby, had their semi-annual sale & I scored this awesome black glass china for no more than $20 total! Painting the inside grey brightened it up, the black china ties in perfectly with my grey & yellow (Lemon Italian hodgepodged cupcake themed) kitchen! I am just in love with my china cabinet & at peace that I could give this gorgeous little gem a make-over that gets so many compliments in our home! 
-XO... or Arrivederci...Ciao..& all that other good stuff!
 (^^compliments of the AristoCats movie I just watched haha^^)
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Monday, September 1, 2014

Happy Labor Day!

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 I hope every one has been having an awesome weekend! I have a couple of awesome "BBQ/Grill" recipes to share with you guys in a couple of posts to come, they do NOT disappoint!
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 Oh, & this little man sends his labor day love to you guys too! Lol.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Meet our newest addition: Tonka!

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Hey guys, this is a couple of months late, but just wanted to take a moment out to introduce you to the newest addition to our little family! This is our little Tonka man! He just turned 4 months on the 20th of this month & is a complete HOT MESS! He is a dapple dachshund & obviously cute as a button! We decided our little Kizzie needed a "her size" friend & had been looking around for a while. FINALLY, we found Tonka. At first we were interested in his sister, she was chocolate, but then Cassie said she would bring both.  We've never really been into the whole "boy dog" thing because my sister's dog liked to mark his territory everywhere...but for some reason we just fell in love with this little man & I am so glad we did! He & Kizzie are two nasty little peas in a pod & soul mates already! Kizzie is a long haired ChiWeenie (Chihuahua & Dachshund) & a total princess DIVA. She runs this household, & she likes to be the "hall monitor"...if Yoki (our demonic cat) or Tonka are doing something they aren't supposed to be doing, she isn't afraid to let them know it or tell us all about it from atop the highest point on our couch! Haha. Anyways, just wanted to show our little "stud-muffin" off & introduce him to everyone!
-XO's & wet little nose kisses.
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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Caramel Apple Bread Pudding

Oh, FALL! Sweet FALL, is just right around the corner! Mmm, sweet.....SWEET STUFF...Well, I don't think I have to tell some of you that that is my weakness! With Fall obviously right around the corner (OH MAN, I CANNOT WAIT!)...come on, tell me you haven't noticed the way the breeze is cooling down a notch from melt your face off, to, lets wear a light thin jacket or cardigan?!... I feel like I'm going to have to really step it up to get on top of my "health" game & find healthier alternatives for some of my favorite colder weather comfort foods!

Dear Comfort Foods, 
Oh how you do comfort me! Just, this time, can you NOT comfort me by making me gain an extra 10lbs of that comforty gain weight goodness you do so possess?! 
Please & Thank You,

Tis the season for apples, pumpkins, soups/stews (I have an amazing Italian Beef Stew that I will share with you guys later, I cannot lie, it is pretttttttyyyyy AMAZING!), & comfort casseroles! Now I don't know about you guys, but my favorite cold weather feel good food  that warms me up is bread pudding & boy do I have the perfect recipe! Bread Puddings are warm, ooey-gooey, & so simple to make. I'm not 100% sure where this recipe came from because I wrote it down a few years ago, but it is by far my favorite bread pudding recipe EVER! Like any other bread pudding, this one is even more delicious the next day, after all of the flavors have gotten to know one another & have come together as the yummy caramely bread puddingy goodness it is! 
-Caramel X's & O's...

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Caramel Apple Bread Pudding
1c. unsweetened applesauce
1c. fat-free milk
1/2c. egg substitute
1/2c. packed brown sugar
1/2c. fat-free whipped topping
1/2c. fat-free caramel ice-cream topping
 (I use the Sea Salt Caramel indulgence by Smuckers, it is DELISH!)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
5c. day old bread, cubed
1/2c. peeled, chopped, granny smith apples.

  • In large bowl, combine the applesauce, milk, brown sugar, egg substitute, vanilla, & cinnamon.
  • Fold in bread crumbs & apples.
  • Pour into an 8-inch square baking dish that has been coated with non-stick spray.
  • Bake uncovered at 325' for 35-40minutes or until knife comes out clean. 
  • Serve warm with whipped topping & caramel. Refrigerate leftovers.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Healthy Salmon Cakes

Amongst all the other crazy things in my life.....trying to get healthy, my distressing/crafting disorder, trying to make-over our living room & kitchen, AND work....Cooking has been one of the trial/error periods for healthy cooking! I am originally from a small speck on the map back home in Alabama & everything is "Sweet Tea, Ya'll, & fried"... My Momma is the Biscuit Queennnnnnn *In My HoneyBooBoo voice* BAHAHA!!! Her biscuits are amazingly soft & puts any others I've had to shame. Seriously, she makes them homemade & they're always perfect. My sister used to stay in the kitchen with her & eat the dough, lol, she should honestly be a pro at making Momma's biscuits.. sadly she isn't lol, as a kid I guess dough was her main priority, not how to make them! I have tried, several times, I have yet to master it, but maybe with a little more practice! It is times like this with memories like that, that sure do make me miss my family back home! Anyways, my point to the biscuit story is that one of my favorite things to eat with them is my Momma's salmon patties. However, they're made with flour (something I rarely have in my pantry) & fried (something I do not do....I bake instead, it's healthier). So, thanks to running across a recipe for Baked Salmon Cakes, I'm happy to at least have one of those things in my life, since my Ma' won't drive up here just to make me some of ither! Haha. This recipe is something Mr.Hooah & I both like & it isn't your traditional salmon patty, it has a little extra OOMPPPPH! with the onion & since it is baked & has flax, its sooo much better & healthier! Le Sigh....now if only I had some of Momma's homemade biscuits! MMM!
-XO for now...
Healthy Salmon Cakes
2 cans of pink salmon
About 1c. bread crumbs (Progresso italian is great!)
1/4c. ground or milled flax seed
2 egg whites
3TBSP. finely diced onion
pepper to taste
  • Debone & remove skin from salmon in a med-large bowl.
  • Mix all ingredients together & form into patties. Place on a non-stick sprayed pan.
  • Bake at 350' for 10 minutes or until crispy & brown on both sides. (You could also cook on stove top, I bake to avoid all the oil though..Cook in pan on medium heat for 5-8 minutes or until crispy & brown!)

Friday, June 20, 2014

Distressing Addiction...

Hi, my name is Carrie-Eve, & I have a distressing PROBLEM....I guess the first step is admitting you have a problem, right?! Haha. My newest addiction is distressing furniture.... I actually have to also admit that I have a SERIOUS love/hate relationship with the whole process too. I am almost always indecisive when it comes to things like this...I can never decide on colors, patterns, etc. Then again, I'm pretty insatiable with everything after a while too & am almost always changing up the way things look! (God love Mr.Hooah for putting up with my craziness! haha!) I found this little antique desk on Craigslist, which is my usual go-to place when looking for things I want/that need a 2nd chance at life! I knew it had potential & I was right because the outcome made me fall in complete love with it! And that old chair you see, well, I got it for free at The Airborne Attic 2 years ago. Yes, I know, I'm somewhat of a pack-rat! I knew it was meant for something, some day, & finally I found a use for it! I wasn't sure how I wanted to do it, you know, make it look pretty... & at first I thought I would reupholster it, but I coincidentally couldn't find my heavy duty stapler, so I decided to sew a cover for it so I can also take it off & remove it to wash it when/if need be. I must say it was a rather interesting process but I am so very happy with the way it all turned out! Mr.Hooah & I set out to Lowes to have some turquoise-ish paint mixed up & wouldn't you know we lucked up on this color that someone had returned & it is VALSPAR & was only $10 for the gallon! I also bought a return of a white/grey sample someone returned & they had it marked down to fifty-cents! I was more than stoked! The yellow color is the color we used for our bathroom. I used all 3 colors too! First came the sanding process...then I painted 2 coats of the golden yellow, 3 coats of turquoise, & then distressed this baby with my new sander Mr.Hooah bought me! That's when you know it's true love...when your husband shares his power tools with you & even buys you a few! Haha. After that, I dry brushed some of the white-grey over the sanded a few spots to give it a little more of a rustic-distressed look & this is what I created!

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Sunday, June 1, 2014

Spicy Honey Glazed Chicken

Hiatus has yet again become me! I know I do not have to go into major dets about how hard it is to run a blog, as I am sure most of you already know it can be time consuming! But I have been so busy with other things... like, distressing furniture... or adopting a new furbaby... and trying to keep up with all the holidays/Army Wife Life! It's been a little hectic! And hectic means quick & easy dinners! I have made several new recipes that we love & I have added to my cookbook! Usually I won't eat chicken on the bone, unless its a drumstick, but this recipe is a great cheap one & its not too bad for you ither...MUCH better than fried chicken!
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Spicy Honey Glazed Chicken
1 pk. chicken drumsticks
1 tsp. kosher salt 
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 c. honey
2 TBSP. apple cider vinegar
  •  Mix spices & set aside.
  • Mix honey & vinegar, set aside.
  • Cover both sides of chicken with spice mix, set on sheet pan lined with foil & sprayed with non-stick spray. Cook in a 350' oven for 30 mins (cooking time may vary a bit depending on oven), flipping half way through. Then turn broiler on high and cook 5-7mins on one side, then flip & cook another 5-7mins. 
  • Now baste the chicken with honey mixture, be sure to really cover it with the mixture. Add to oven again & let it cook until the honey starts to thicken up & glaze. You can add another swipe of honey mix if you like it sticky!
  • Take it out of oven, let rest for 5-10 mins before serving.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Key Lime Cake Truffle

Summer is here & we all know that Summer= BBQ's! And for BBQ's, I have 2 of my signature dishes that I always make 1) Potato Salad and 2) Baked Beans..(I have sworn myself to secrecy on those recipes, sorry)..and I also find myself using a "borrowed" BBQ recipe from The Pioneer Woman that is a definite crowd pleaser! (It's not what you think, though I wish it were..she didn't call me up & give it to me, we aren't close personal friends...but I do know her...you know, from FoodNetwork! Bahaha!) And I ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS make a dessert! Sometimes it's things that are thrown together & this was definitely one of those times! I had a recipe for a Key Lime Cake & I thought about it & in the words of Sweet Brown: "Ain't nobody got time fo dat!" I love any chance I get to dig out my truffle bowl, its just too pretty when you layer things! So needless to say, this thrown together, not as elegant as it probably could have looked "truffle" was a complete hit! I won't name any names or anything, but let's just say, people were licking the bowl! This is simple, easy-peasy, & will now be a dessert I make for backyard BBQ's with our Army Family! HOOAH!

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I apologize in advance for the state of this picture! I was still in the process of making it so it is shown unfinished..I didn't get an "after" pic because people were already digging into it! lol.

Key Lime Cake Truffle
1 Box lemon cake mix
4 eggs
1 (32oz) Box lime jell-o mix
3/4 c. Orange juice
1 c. vegetable oil

1 pk. cream cheese, room temp.
1 Large tub cool-whip
1 tsp. vanilla extract
lime juice to taste
*optional: a couple of sliced limes for decoration as used in pic*
  •  Bake cake as directed, set aside to cool.
  • Put cream cheese in mixer & cream until smooth. Then put in the cool-whip & other filling ingredients & mix until smooth. 
  • Cut cake into bite size squares & layer in the bottom of truffle bowl. (ADD LAYER OF LIMES AROUND EDGES OF BOWL NOW IF YOU ARE USING THEM!) Add a layer of filling, then cake, & continue ending with filling on top. (I also use some ready-whip as additional topping just to make it look pretty!)
  • Chill in the refrigerator a few hours before serving...

Black Pepper Chicken

I don't know about you guys, but I L.O.V.E me some Chinese Buffet! It never fails, every time I go, I get the same thing! My absolute favorite thing there is the Black Pepper Chicken & their Baked Crab(you know, the one with all that cheese!?). To make things even better, we found a little hole in the wall Chinese place right up the street from us that actually makes it for carry-out orders! However, since dieting, it is SUPER unhealthy because it is breaded & deep fried. So, I decided to make up my own recipe & all I have to say is "MOVE OVER CHINESE RESTAURANTS, THERE IS A NEW ASIAN COOK IN TOWN"! Haha, but no, forrealiooo, this chicken is seriously better than the restaurants & I am so addicted! Mr.Hooah is even a big fan too... So much so, that  we have it sometimes two nights a week! It is MUCH better for you than the deep fried stuff that is then wok-fried with the sauce they use etc... I'm actually Korean for those of you that do not already know that & I feel like I'm getting in touch with my asian roots on this one because I don't know how I pulled it off but I did! This is super yummy & easy! Hope you enjoy!<----- too bad I don't know how to say that in Korean haha!

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Black Pepper Chicken
1 pk. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 green or red pepper, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
2-4 TBSP. cornstarch in a ziplock bag
1- 1 1/2 c. lite soy sauce (reserve 2-3 TBSP.)
Black pepper (to taste) 
1-2 TBSP. minced garlic
1/4 c. honey (or to taste)
  •  Place chicken in a bowl & pour soy over top, stirring to make sure all of the chicken gets some soy-love. Cover with lid & let marinate for 15mins or so. (I usually do this while I am cutting up the veggies & getting everything else prepped!)
  • When chicken is done marinating, spoon out your 2-3 TBSP's of soy & set aside...then drain chicken with strainer.. now is the time to heat the EVOO in a non-stick pan..Place chicken into the bag with the cornstarch. Give it a few good shakes, making sure chicken is evenly coated & then pour into pan. Cook on med-high heat until the chicken starts to brown a little, then add in your onions, peppers, & garlic...continue cooking until chicken is golden brown & cooked through. 
  • Now lower heat to med-low & add in reserved soy sauce, the honey, & sprinkle black pepper (to taste..I usually sprinkle it around 2-3x). Stirring constantly until the sauce thickens a bit...Let stand at least 5-10 mins for sauce to set.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Chicken Spaghetti

I know that I have had to have mentioned it before, but just incase I didn't, I love watching Food Network & I have to confess, I am kinda obsessed with Ree Drummond. Ok & that was a really long run-on sentence! I love that Ree is real & puts some love into her cooking. I've learned some pretty handy tips from her as well just by watching her show. Any who, I have yet to make a recipe of hers that Mr.Hooah & I didn't like. I have made several of them but Mr.Hooah & I have two favorites, this Chicken Spaghetti recipe is one of them. (The other is shortly to come since summer is on the way soon!) I, as always, try to make my recipes as healthy as possible & of course I made this recipe & tweaked it in my own way, but you can find the original recipe here The Pioneer Woman's Chicken Spaghetti Recipe! I will add the side note that I did use the 2 cups of chicken stock & towards the end of cooking I did a sneak-peek & it was definitely looking very "juicy", but after taking it out of the oven you MUST let it rest & the liquid absorbs & it turns out just beautifully & creamy! Bon Appetit!
-Happy St. Patty's Day & XO

Chicken Spaghetti 
3 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, boiled & roughly chopped 
1 pk. Spaghetti, Broken Into Two Inch Pieces 
2 cans Cream Of Mushroom Soup 
2c. Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese 
1/2 of a Finely Diced Green Pepper
1/2 of a Finely Diced Red Pepper 
1/4c. Finely Diced Onion 
1 jar (4oz.) Diced Pimentos, Drained 
2c. Reserved Chicken Broth From Pot 
1-2 TBSP. Beer Can Chicken Seasoning
1/4 tsp. Cayenne Pepper 
Salt And Pepper, to taste 
1c. Additional Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese

  • Boil the chicken breasts until cooked through & then roughly chop up to make 2cups(I had a little over 2cups but used it all, the more the merrier, right?!)
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  •  Cook spaghetti in same chicken broth until al dente, about 9minutes. Do Not Overcook. When spaghetti is cooked, combine with the remaining ingredients except the additional 1 cup of sharp cheddar.
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  • Place mixture in casserole pan & top with remaining cheese. 
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  • Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes until bubbly. (If the cheese on top starts to get too cooked, cover with foil). If it is still a little "juicy" when you take it out of the oven, LET IT REST, so the juices will absorb & it will be perfectly creamy & delicious! 
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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Tips & Tricks--Spring Cleaning!

This one is short & sweet, I haven't had much time to blog as much as I had planned to these past few weeks with everything going on at random, but there is a lot that I have to share as soon as I get the chance to sit down & blog it up! Today's party is Spring Cleaning, which in my house, has been something I have been trying to get a head start on because Lord knows it needs it! Maybe Mr.Hooah & I can finally tackle the garage of terror & doom this weekend, so I can finally park my jeep inside! LOL, I think I might want to leave a trail of crumbs or maybe tie my laptop cord around my waist so that if in fact I do get lost somewhere out there, I can at least still blog haha. Happy Tuesday guys! 

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Anything Goes: Anything Goes:
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Kraft Mint 
Stl Motherhood
A Fresh Start on a Budget 
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Controlling Craziness
Be Simply Better 
Trip Worth Taking 
A Daily Dose of Del Signore 
Krysta Steen

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Motivation, where are you?!

Is it just me, or do I seem to be the only one struggling to find full motivation right now?! I started back on my diet Monday, now it's Thursday & I am still HANGING IN THERE! I cannot even tell you guys how hard it is to hang in there ither! I am not a huge IG'er, I only have a few followers & only follow a few...but the one's I do follow are health people or people of similar situations as myself: Trying to loss the chubbs! Mr.Hooah has'nt helped with his Utz Butterfinger Pretzels ither! SHAME ON HIM right?! Haha. I am trying to do something a little different with my blog too, I want to write a few posts inbetween of all the recipe/craftiness, for others to connect to & also for me to have a little vent/share time of progress etc... A little while ago I tried out the clean eating & it was great, don't get me wrong, but because I quit everything else pretty much cold turkey, I got bored with it & craved for things. So this time around I am going to ease back into clean-eating. I ordered some Chia Seeds offline (we have no Trader Joe's here...sheesh, thanks ft.bragg!) after seeing A LOT of people on IG & youtube pages I follow, using them. Guyyyyyyssssssss! They're amazing! You can use them in your baking, cooking, smoothies, & yogurt. You can also make pudding with them & use them as an egg replacement! How awesome is that?! Anywho, since Monday I'm down 3 lbs... I'll take it! haha. I've managed to "Mind-Over-Matter" myself & have pulled through running at least 3 miles a day & then doing some weights & other little home workouts until I can get into my gym. I swear, my body wants to just give up, but I've been sticking it out & I think that is part of what makes me so proud to have finished a workout & what makes me feel so good about myself! Soon, I plan on experimenting on recipes with these Chia Seeds & hope to post the recipes! I have been eyeballing a recipe for Lemon Chia Seed Muffins! Supposedly they're just like Lemon Poppy Seed, which is my ALL TIME favorite muffin! :) 
Muffin reminded me of this! Haha!
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Ok, I'll stop my craziness now haha, hope you guys have a great day...Get Motivated & Get Fit!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Back from Hiatus!

Sorry about my short hiatus...it wasn't a leisurely one ither. My husbands father passed away so we have been busy with back & forth trips to Ohio, which was not easy because the military only gave Mr.Hooah a certain amount of time to do the things needed & take time off. We got it all taken care of though & his dad had a wonderful military service & was also buried with full honors in a national cemetery here in North Carolina, which made it very special. On a happier note, Mr.Hooah & I have decided to finally start planning our vow renewal since the small little back yard wedding wasn't exactly what we had wanted. EXCITING! I also have started back on my diet, which is going to be interesting since Mr.Hooah wants to do it with me... even though he was eating Butterfinger Pretzels when I came into the bedroom last night & I wanted to eat the whole bag! Haha. The blog world is still running smooth I see & I'm happy to be back from hiatus, I will still be participating in the tuesday linky-party & will be posting it in a bit. Thanks so much for all the prayers & thoughts, it meant more than you know to Mr.Hooah & I! Happy Tuesday you guys! 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Tips & Tricks Link Party--Trash to Treasure!

Hey guys! Hope everyone is having a FANTASTIC tuesday! Last week we had some awesome superbowl foods linked up & I even added a few to my recipe book! Now, on to this weeks party: Trash to Treasure...we are changing things up a bit, there will just be one section to link everything up. What awesome things do you guys have to share this week? I am always saving things to "recycle" into something new.. Mr.Hooah will agree that I keep more "recyclables" than I actually recycle!  And I love to refurbish things from craigslist...what's that old saying?
 "Someones trash is someone else's treasure"... Now let's party!

Here is the most-pinned SuperBowl Recipe from last weeks link up..
 Spicy Rosemary Cashews from 3 Little Green Woods.
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Please take a button so that your readers can come party too! Also, don't forget to follow all of the awesome hosts below so that you won't miss out on your shout-outs!
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Stringtown Home  
 Like Gramma's House 
Fearlessly Creative Mammas 
Kraft Mint 
Stl Motherhood
A Fresh Start on a Budget 
Gina's Craft Corner 
Controlling Craziness
Be Simply Better 
Trip Worth Taking 
A Daily Dose of Del Signore 
Krysta Steen
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Trash To Treasure:
 Want to know whats next?
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