Monday, April 16, 2012

Carb Free anyone!?

We all know that going on a low carb diet helps to lose weight fast but really, who wants to give up breads, pasta, cookies?  I know I don't!  But I also know that I need to limit myself.  I am determined to lose 3 babies worth of weight before I turn 30...I don't know I just feel like if I don't do it before 30 it may NEVER come off!  But I have a MAJOR sweet tooth....I love bread too. 

So I have adjusted a few things in my diet so I don't feel SO bad when I need a little extra 'comfort food'.  When I make bread I use White Whole wheat flour.  I am also substituting flax seed for a lot of the fat in my baking.
 I made chocolate chip cookies this weekend with half whole wheat and half non-bleached steps!  I also used some of the flax seed for the fat.  They turned out great!!!  I want to 'perfect' them before I give anyone a fool proof recipe but even my husband ate them!!!

What I tried today what called Cloud Bread.  It is a virtually carb free 'bread'.  I have to say I was very sceptical about this but if you need a little bread with your salad or chicken breast this will do it!  IT WILL NOT FILL YOU UP!!  so don't just eat a bunch of this thinking it will make you full.  Eat your Fiber with it!!!  The great thing about this is that it is easy and even my kids like it. 

  • 3 eggs , separated
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk cottage cheese or 3 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 (1 g) packet artificial sweetener

  • Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
    2. Separate the eggs very carefully, there must be no yolk in the white.
    3. In one bowl, mix together the egg yolks, the 3 T. of Cottage Cheese OR Cream Cheese and the one packet of Sweetener until smooth.  {I used cream cheese}
    4. In the other bowl add 1/4 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to the whites and beat the whites on high speed until they are fluffy and form nice peaks.
    5. Very carefully fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites until mixed, but try and not break down the fluffiness of the egg whites too much.
    6. Spray two cookie sheets with Pam or other fat-free cooking spray.
    7. With a large spoon, "scoop" the mixture into 10 even rounds on the sheets (about the size of the top-half of the McDonald's hamburger bun; roughly 3/4 inch thick and 4 to 5 inches across).
    8. Bake on the middle rack. Here is when you have to watch them, because the cooking time the same on any two batches. It is somewhere around 1/2 hour, but it could be less or more. You just need to watch them until them become nice and golden brown (again, the color of a McDonald's bun).
    9. Remove from the pans and cool on a rack or cutting board.
    10. While warm they are crumbly and similar to cooked meringue - but don't let this fool you! Once completely cool, seal them in a ziplock storage baggie or a tupperware over night. They will totally change their consistency, to something much more like bread - a softer texture that is nice and chewy. If you do not like softer chewy bread, then eat them as they are, nice and crisp.
    11. Since the sides that were facing the pan are perfectly flat, you use these to spread things on, or make sandwiches, or even as a burger bun! The choice is up to you, and you will be quite amazed at how much like a bun these really are!

    ....Okay, The first batch I made did not come out 'crumbly' but I still thought they tasted fine.  I need to spray my pan a bit better next time!  Also, I don't think these will last long enough to 'change consistancy' in our house....I will have to hide them

    Thursday, April 5, 2012

    Easter Ideas

    Like most moms the weeks leading up to a holiday I like to have lots of relevant activities.  For Easter we have been doing the Resurrection Eggs.  I am doing it in 6 days so each kid can open one egg.  My 4 year old loves hearing the story of Jesus sacrifice for us!  I re-cap each day of what we have learned already and they always want to know what is going to happen next!

    Another thing we did last night for dessert is yummy Resurrection rolls.  They were so delicious but what was fun was to have the kids help make them. 

    {You take 8 large marshmallows (Jesus)
    Dip them in melted butter (the oils)
    roll them in cinnamon sugar (the spices)
    wrap them in a crescent roll (the burial clothes or the tomb)
    ****make sure to seal them VERY well because I thought I did and the marshmallow still came out of most of them!

    You dip the top of the roll in the butter and the cinnamon sugar
    and then place on a baking sheet and cook at 350 for about 10 min.

    When you take them out Jesus is gone!

    (You can use the oven as the tomb symbolism but my kids didn't seem to understand that) }

    This last thing is fun for your kids Easter baskets....Play dough carrots!

    I used my favorite play dough recipe for these and I just doubled it.  It made 5 carrots.  I put the dough in sandwich bags and tied with some green ribbon!  These will be great fun for my nieces and nephews (and my kids too!)

    {Just in case you want the recipe for the dough here it is:

    1 cup flour
    1 cup water
    2 tsp cream of tarter
    1/4 salt
    1 TBS oil
    food coloring

    Mix everything together in a pan and then cook over medium heat until it forms a solid (it takes a while...keep stirring so it doesn't burn!)

    When it is done take it out...kneed a little and let cool.  You end up with a nice soft dough that is oh so fun to play with!!!}

    Ingredients mixed together
    It starts to get lumpy

    Final product!


    Ranch Macaroni and cheese!

    When I am having a birthday party or just looking for a way to change things up around the dinner table I turn to this old favorite Ranch Macaroni and cheese!  It is definitely a comfort food!  My kids love it and it is always a crowd pleaser!  The best part is you can make the whole batch (4 cups of dry macaroni) and freeze what you don't eat.  Gotta love a meal that you can eat and freeze some too!

    Here's what you need:

    {        16 oz of macaroni or 4 cups,
               1 cup milk
                    1/4 cup butter
        1 envelope ranch mix
              1 tsp. garlic salt
           1 cup monetary jack
                 1 cup colby cheese
       1 cup sour cream
              1/2 cup crushed saltines
                  1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese }

    Cook the macaroni and set aside
    In a sauce pan combine milk, butter, ranch mix, salt, cheeses and sour cream.  Combine until cheese is melted.  Add to the noodles and mix.  At this time you can add the crushed saltines and mix them in or leave them on top.  I made mine ahead of time so I left them on top and then warmed it in the oven.  The Parmesan is to top it off with!! 


    My Easter Cuties

    I am a BIT biased but I think these little ones are the CUTEST around!  Here they are showing off their Easter outfits. 

    I made Madelyn's dress (first time making one!)  I did not use a pattern so I don't have one to share but I did base it off of a simple pillowcase dress like this ONE.

    For the boys I decided to make it simple and just make bow ties!  These are SO easy to make.  I used some of the same fabric that I had in the dress (white and yellow stripe).  

    {I cut two rectangles the size that I wanted the tie to be.  I put the right sides together and sewed them leaving an opening to turn it inside out.  After turning it right side out I sewed up that opening.  For the middle part I folded a piece of fabric to be the width I wanted  and made it about 3 inches long.  Then after sewing the edge I turned that right side out.  I folded it over with the seem on the on the outside.  What you are doing here is making the small loop to slide the tie through.  So sew across and trim any excess.  After truing it right side out slide it on and there you have your bow tie!  You could put a strap on it or you can do what I did and use a safety pin!} 

    So these are not the best instructions but here is the one I used from Prudent Baby!


    Thursday, March 29, 2012

    Sneak Peek

    Ok, I have been spending some time with my sewing machine and here is a sneak peek at what I have been doing!  This is the skirt that I made for myself....I have a few things to finish on it but I was trying it on for fit :)  I also have a dress for maddy and ties for the little men! We'll have more pictures soon!!!

    stained glass crosses

    It's Thursday!!!!  Yeah for Thursdays with Janell! 

    Today we did an Easter project with the kids.  Here is what we did:

    I cut crosses out of construction paper (you can use any kind).  I cut up a bunch of tissue paper and then put the crosses onto clear contact paper that I got at Target.  The kids went to work placing the tissue paper onto the sticky side of the contact paper!

    After that was done I put another piece of contact paper on top and then we hung them in the window!  We also did eggs!

    Now most of you would probably want to cut around the cross but my kiddos put the tissue paper all over and did not want any cut off!

    This is a great project for kids of all ages.  The older ones can cut their own tissue paper and make designs.  It has NO GLUE so is pretty much mess free! Good fine moter and creativity!

    Now don't forget to talk about the importance of the cross with your kids while doing the project!  Always a time to share the gospel!

    Sunday, March 25, 2012


     I did this project a week ago and I am finally getting something posted!!  We have all miss match, free, garage sale dressers.  We knew we needed one 'new' dresser for our boys and I have been wanting 'matching' dressers for our room for the last 8 years!  After doing some pricing and not wanting to spend the money on new dressers I decided to take an idea that I pinned and paint two of the dressers black and antique them.  These I would put in our bedroom.  Then I saw this pin and thought it would be Perfect in Maddy's room!  So the three dressers that we had I was ready to paint!!

    This is what they looked like before....above is the drawers for the tall dresser and that was for Eli.  I did chalk paint on the drawers for labels (more for my husband than Eli!!)  But it was time for a change. 

    Below is the really cheap dresser that I had when I was in HIGH SCHOOL!!!  I won't tell you how long ago that was!  It is just a particle board dresser. 

     I sanded everything down to rough it up....and then put primer on all of it.

    Ok, now that that part is done I waited, played with the kids, ate lunch...waited and then started painting!!

    So here are the first coats of black paint: 

    Lots of pictures, I know....It was such a nice day out!

    So next step was to wait again....and wait and wait...and then when it is dry I took a sanding block and sanded it down again.  After cleaning it off I put coat number two of black paint on!

    It is starting to look better!!  At this point It was getting later in the day and I let these coats dry over night.  The next day I was ready to start sanding!  So I sanded around the edges of the drawers and other spots that I wanted to look antiqued.  I sanded it down to the bare wood.  I used a stain pen then to give the wood a finished look.

    Seriously, it was so nice out....March in Minnesota is not like that is why everything got moved out of the garage to dry and be worked on!

    Next step was to polish it up...I used a finishing paste to give it a shiny look. 
    So after all of that we moved them into the bedroom and we now have MATCHING dressers!! 

    I would really like to show you a finished picture but I keep forgetting and when I remember my little man is sleeping in there!  I also still need to spray paint the handles so they all match.  BUT I am almost done and I WILL HAVE A FINISHED PICTURE SOON!

    Oh I almost forgot.  Here are the pics from my little Maddy's dresser.  I painted the main part white and then I started by painting the bottom drawer the pink color that I bought and then I kept adding white paint to get the lighter colors!

    Yep, we still need to get new hardware on this dresser but it fits her room so well!! 

    So there, a LONG post but 3 beautiful 'new' dressers!