Thursday, September 25, 2014

Slow-Cooker Turkey Breast Stuffed with Wild Rice and Cranberries

I have this in the slow cooker today.  Cooked the rice last night so it came together super fast. 
Will report back on how it comes out!


4  cups cooked wild rice                     

3/4 cup finely chopped onion (1 large) 


1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries


1/3   cup slivered almonds


2  medium cooking apples, peeled or unpeeled, coarsely chopped (2 cups)


boneless whole turkey breast (4 to 5 lb), thawed if frozen
In large bowl, mix all ingredients except turkey. Cut turkey into slices at 1-inch intervals about three-fourths of the way through, forming deep pockets.
In 3- to 4-quart slow cooker, place turkey. Stuff pockets with wild rice mixture. Place remaining rice mixture around edge of slow cooker.
Cover; cook on Low heat setting 8 to 9 hours or until juice of turkey is clear when center of thickest part is cut (170°F). Thermometer inserted in center of stuffing should read 165°F.
*Adapted from Betty Crocker

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I Heart Coldplay

It's a Coldplay kinda day, week, month, year.  The live versions of  In My Place and Fix You are this week's obsession.  Love, Love, Love.

On a different note tomorrow I am making apple-stuffed turkey breast in the crockpot - need to use up the tons of apples we picked Sunday.  Will report back on how it turns out!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Top Three Traits of a Great Boss

I came across this article about the top three traits of a great boss and have been meaning to post it for the past two months!  Basic concepts, but certainly always good to re-read as a refresher. :)

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Perfect & Easy Apple Crisp

WHAT a weekend!   Friday night I went to visit a friend -- we hung outside with a big fire pit and some wine.  It was good to catch up.

Saturday was insane.  9 AM my big guy went to piano and I took my middle one (and the little one) to soccer.  Noon my oldest had football practice and 2:00 a soccer game.  The football coach sent an email yesterday evening asking to do practice every Saturday and then games every Sunday.  I sent him a note and was like um, hell no!!  Do the practice right before the game please.  Thankfully he sent out a note to all the parents just now switching it to my request. 

I walked into my house and my family was over for our annual Fishfest (my brother and husband go to Arthur Ave for tons of seafood, fresh pasta, bread, etc.) and poker night. 

This morning we had 9 AM football practice followed by a game.  We were done by 11 and went apple picking.  The kids had fun.  I made an incredible easy and amazing apple crisp.
I think it was one of the best I have made and it came together in 10 minutes.  I recommend it!

Perfect & Easy Apple Crisp
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8-inch square baking dish. 
Arrange apple slices evenly in prepared baking dish. Sift flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal; sprinkle over apples.
Bake in preheated oven until topping is golden, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool slightly before serving
I didn't take a picture.  It came out of the oven and was gone about 15 mins later! 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Snack Bread

Back to school means back to BUSY Sundays.

Hit Whole Foods at 8 AM, unpacked and then took the big guys to their 9:30 piano lessons.  Dropped them off and ran to get a manicure. 

Came home and my husband took the baby to pick up his mom and visit his grandma.  I cleaned and baked until 1:30 when I had to take my middle guy to a birthday party.

Got home and the big boys helped me make spinach and fresh tomato lasagna for their dinner.  They also randomly asked if I could make them pumpkin pie the other day.  We only do dessert on Sunday so I decided to surprise them with a recipe I found in this month's Taste of Home Magazine called Marshmallow Pumpkin Pie. 

As for the rest of my baking.  I have a jar of jam in my fridge that hasn't moved - my kids don't like PB&J (can't blame them - I hate it too!).  Since I usually bake a treat for their after school snack I googled "banana jam bread" just to see if there was such a thing.  Sure enough I found a recipe for Banana Jam Bread.  I threw in chocolate chips for good measure.

Also when I made the pumpkin pie I had leftover pumpkin so made two more loaves for Easy One Bowl Pumpkin Bread

Top two banana jam loaves and bottom two are chocolate chip pumpkin bread

My freezer is now stocked with 3 loaves so I can take a week or two off from baking!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Zoo + Paint Nite

Last night we visited some friends and had dinner.  They made the most amazing meal ever- fish tacos, filet mignon, sliders, corn, salad, zucchini.  It was unreal.

This morning we went to the zoo when it opened and had our fingers crossed the rain would stay away.  We lucked out because the rain started just as we left.

Survived Walmart to pick up a couple of things.

Then we went to Paint Nite.  Here is my masterpiece!

It's called lovebirds.  The boys love it and want it hung up in their room. :)

Watching Star Wars now with the big boys.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

First Day of Two Year Old Nursery School + Natural Fertilizer Tip

My little man is officially a mini student. :)  I took him this morning and stayed with him for 1/2 hour at his nursery school to help ease him in.

Ran to a doctor's appointment for a check up.  Then struggled for hours with my oldest to do homework, take a bath and go to bed. He is like 5 kids wrapped up in one he needs so much attention. Oy.

In other news, when I went to Starbucks this morning I noticed the sign below posted.  Thought some of you gardeners out there might be interested!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Apple Chocolate Chip Bread

My middle guy and I were up bright and early so we hit up Starbucks and Whole Foods.  Ran to get my nails done and then picked all 3 kids up to take them bowling so my husband could go to work.

Sitting out back now relaxing while the big kids are in the pool.

We usually plow through fruit like crazy each week, but for some reason we had 6 leftover apples so just made applesauce and Chocolate Chip Apple Bread is in the oven.  Will report back if they like it.

It's a Groupon kinda day so later will hit up a local Italian restaurant to use another one up since it is set to expire.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Sicilian Grill-Roasted Chicken

Work is so insanely busy.  I was happy yesterday I was off the hook for cooking dinner.

I was picked up from the train and we all went right over to my husband's Aunt's house for a "back to school" dinner.  The kids had so much fun coloring and playing with some other little kids that were there.

Today we hit up a birthday party at 9:15 this morning.  Home now and prepping for company who are coming later tonight.  I made peach sangria, fresh lemonade for the kids, two chickens are marinating in the fridge for Bon Appetite's Sicilian Grill-Roasted Chicken, corn, grilled eggplant and zucchini, big salad and homemade Italian bread is currently rising before it goes in the oven.

Will update with photos later!

*Forgot to take a pic, but it was delish!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Eve of Second Grade

Work is INSANE.  Insane. INSANE!  So busy.

Need to go in a little late tomorrow though because my big boy starts 2nd Grade!  In honor of school gearing back up here is a great article listing 25 ways to ask your kids 'so how was school today'...without actually asking it that way -- because we all know you only get a one word response if you ask it like that!!

Monday, September 1, 2014


Saturday we had my old high school friend and her family down for dinner.  We had a great day.

Yesterday we had friends over again and did a tomato theme dinner since we have so many tomatoes from the garden we wanted to use up.  I made for an appetizer Queso Fundido Dip which was a big hit.

We did skewers with beef, tomatoes and other vegetables.  Quinoa & zucchini stuffed tomatoes and my friend brought a salad and a tomato tart.

For dessert I made strawberry tomato ice cream in the Vitamix....I loved it!  So easy to make and refreshing.  I also made (out of theme!) Ina's Strawberry Country Cake -- so easy and delish!

It was also a busy shopping weekend getting ready for school. Picked up my oldest's uniform, took them to Nordstrom for sneakers, Gap (everything in the store is 40% off!) for socks and Lord and Taylor for a Fall jacket for me.  Every place was oddly not crowded -- which was great - lots of good sales going on! 
Off to visit my inlaws soon for dinner and then back to the grind tomorrow!