Thursday, January 31, 2019

Friday Funny

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This was shared on my husbands work page this week.  :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Cooking Thursday

I have another Instantpot recipe for you today.  This is one that can be made ahead and put in the freezer, then popped into the Instantpot and made in a hurry.
This was good, but a little spicy, so if you don't like things hot, you may want to skip the red pepper flakes.  I also plan to add green peppers next time.

Honey Bourbon Chicken
1 ½ pounds Chicken, Thighs, Boneless/Skinless
⅛ teaspoons Salt
⅛ teaspoons Black Pepper
½ cups dice Onion
½ cups Soy Sauce
¼ cups Ketchup
2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
2 teaspoons mince Garlic, Cloves
¼ tablespoons Red Pepper Flakes
1 cup Honey

2 tablespoons Cornstarch
1 tablespoon Water
Cooked rice

Combine all ingredients except for cornstarch and water and place into round, freezable containers. Label and freeze.
On Cooking Day:
Place frozen contents into inner pot.
Lock cover into place and seal steam nozzle.
Cook on high pressure for 25 minutes.
Naturally release pressure for 10 minutes then quick release remaining pressure.
Remove chicken and dice.
Set Instant Pot setting to saute.
In a bowl, combine cornstarch and water.
Add cornstarch mixture and chicken to pot and continue to cook (on saute) for 2-3 minutes until thickened.
Serve over rice

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Monday, January 28, 2019


I went past this cute building the other day and had to stop and take a picture.  This is where I went to school from Kindergarten to 2nd grade.  When I was in school here there wasn't all the playground equipment that you can see now.  There were just a few swing sets and a merry go round, but what fun we had on that playground!  I remember art classes in the basement, a room in the middle of the other rooms that was lined with hooks and a shelve for our coats and lunch boxes.
It is no longer a school.  Right now it's a child care center, but before it was purchased there was talk of it being torn down.  I'm just glad it's still standing!

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Let's talk about the weather!

We have had an unusually mild winter this year, but that all came to an end last week.  First we got hit with such cold!  I got called in to work early last week, and when I was driving in at 2:30 in the morning, it was -9 degrees!  That is way too cold for me.
Then then snow came.

Here's what our road has been looking like.

The area snowmobilers have been happy!

 It looks especially pretty when the sun comes out.

Snow is piling up over everything!

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And here is what the week is supposed to look like.  We live just under the -25 on the map.
It could be a long week!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Cooking Thursday

Last week I was going to make a roast for supper, which I usually cook for a long time in the crock pot.  I forgot about it until mid morning and it was still in the freezer.  I decided to try making it in the Instantpot.  I used a Pioneer Woman recipe, and we both thought it turned out really good.  It had yummy flavor and was tender.

Pioneer Woman Instantpot Beef  Roast

1 whole Beef Chuck Roast, 3 To 4 Pounds
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 whole Large Yellow Onions, Peeled And Quartered
6 whole Carrots, Washed, Scrubbed, And Cut Into Large Pieces
1 cup Red Wine
2 cups Beef Stock
3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary
3 sprigs Fresh Thyme

Set the Instantpot to “Saute” and allow to warm.

Season roast generously with salt and pepper. When Instant Pot says "Hot," add in olive oil and sear roast until browned on all sides. Remove to a clean plate.

Add in onions and carrots and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Deglaze with red wine, scraping the bottom of the pot to get all of the delicious bits. Add in the beef stock, rosemary, thyme and the beef.

Lock the lid into place, place vent to sealing, push "Manual," and set time to 60 minutes. The Instant Pot will release some steam as it comes up to pressure, then it will seal automatically.

When the cooking time is done, allow the Instant Pot to naturally vent for at least 10 minutes, 20 is better. Using a wooden spoon, carefully push the valve open to release the rest of the pressure. Remove lid.

Skim a much fat off the top of the liquid as you can before disturbing the roast. Remove the roast to a cutting board and with two forks shred roast. Serve alongside carrots and onions, topped with the pan juices. Serve with mashed potatoes.  

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Monday, January 21, 2019

A new bed!

Last week I mentioned that we were working on a new bed for Alaina and Ruby.  We got it all set up, and they got to find a bunk bed in their room when they came over this weekend.

The room isn't big, but the bunk beds work, with this book case to hold books and toys.

 They didn't know we were working on this, so they were very excited when they opened the door and found it.

Of course, they both want the top bunk!

 But, Alaina gets to be up top first.

And Ruby was fine here, and is ready to go to sleep.

There was a little talking, but it didn't take long for them to both be sleeping.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Bowling with Grandpa and Grandma

The grandkids always have a hard time trying to come up with a gift idea at Christmas for my Dad and stepmom.  They have everything they need, so this year, one of them came up with the plan to all go out bowling.  Dad and Ann bowl three times a week and love it, so this was perfect.  Spending time with the whole group of them is what they like best.  They took them out for supper afterward.
All the grandkids were there, except my Andy and Nikki who are in Kentucky, and also Cheri's daughter Halle, who was planning on it, but sprained her ankle playing soccer in the morning and ended up at urgent care.  She was able to make it to the restaurant for supper.

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 Here's Aaron helping Alaina and Ruby bowl.

 I think bowling shoes look cutest on little feet.

Dad with his little sweethearts.

Alaina got a strike!

I love Dad and Ann's relationship with the girls. They both love them, and the girls love them back!

After bowling, they went out to supper and our daughter Heather had made up awards for highest and lowest bower.  Laura got lowest, but in her defense, Ruby had bowled her first game.  Ann did the best, with Dad a close second.  Ann will be 90 in June, and Dad will be 88 in March.  I think they both do amazingly well.

Everyone had a great time and they plan to do this again.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Cooking Thursday

We're enjoying soup this time of year.  Last week I made this chicken rice soup in the slow cooker that I hadn't made for some time and was reminded how easy and tasty this recipe was.

Chicken Rice Soup 

4 cans chicken broth (12-13 oz size)
2 C. chopped, cooked chicken 
1 bag sliced frozen carrots
1 C. chopped celery
salt, pepper to taste
1 box chicken Rice-a-roni. 
Stir all ingredients together and cook on low for 6-7 hours.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Monday, January 14, 2019

Tip for Tuesday

A few weeks ago I mentioned that in doing some food prep, I had cooked up some ground beef and chicken and frozen it.  Several of you e-mailed me to ask what I do with it, so I thought I would share it with you here.

Whenever I need ground beef, or if it's on sale, I buy it in a large package. I often buy at least 4 pounds.  I brown it in a saucepan, using my Pampered Chef Mix and Chop.  If you don't have on of these, I highly recommend it!  It helps chop the ground beef up finely and mixes while it does so.  I wouldn't be without it, and have given it as a gift to several who have also enjoyed it.

Once the meat is cooked, I put it in a colander and drain the grease.  I then rinse it with hot water, and put it in freezer bags, usually one pound per bag.
When you need it, it's very easy to throw a meal together because the beef is cooked.  It also saves time because you cook it all at once, and you only have to clean up the mess once.

I do something similar with chicken.  I buy a bulk package of chicken breasts or thighs and cook them all at once.  I then shred it and put it in freezer bags.
It's very handy to have both of these items ready to go in the freezer.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Party like it's 2018!

Bob's workplace decided this past Christmas to wait to have their Christmas party until January, so their employees didn't have to try to fit another party into the mix that often occurs in December.  The party was this past Saturday night.  It was held at a local restaurant, and the decision to hold it later meant the attendance was really good.

 The decorations were so cute!  Bob works for True Value Hardware, and each table had a strip of this paper they use to wrap windows or screens they've repaired.  The centerpiece was a tree trunk circle, with an old True Value toy truck on it, life savers and wrist bands that said True Value and Well Done on them.

They also had trees made with the same paper.

Here's a few of the little trucks.  So cute!

One thing they did was to show a video they made of each the employees talking about what they liked about their job.  This was Bob's part on it. The general consensus from most of them was that they like the people.  He really is blessed by the wonderful people he works with and for!

Along with a great meal, there were a bunch of games.  There were guessing games - each table had a container full of different items, and we had to try to guess the amount of each one.  Can you believe I won from one table and tied with someone else on another table?
There was also a sticker under a chair at each table, and I got that one too!  That allowed me to spin a wheel and I got a restaurant gift certificate from it.

They drew names to play Family Feud and my name was drawn for that too.  The funny thing was that Bob's name was also drawn to play against my team.  His team won!

 Several people were recognized for their years of working there, and one was Bob.

Here's his recognition award for 20 years!

 The staff always collect money to buy a gift for the manager of the store.  This year they commissioned Bob to do a carving of him, and here he is right after he opened it.

Here's the carving.  Chad is a great guy, does all kind of things and is always running to rescue someone or help them out.  So, Bob carved him ripping his shirt open, with a Superman t-shirt underneath.  Chad is also a Christian who depends on the Lord, so the plaque says Phil 4:13 - "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".  Chad really liked it.

It was a fun evening!

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Cooking Thursday

Here's a quick recipe I re-discovered at Christmas.  If you want a quick and easy treat, this is a good one!

No Bake Avalanche Cookies

2 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup mini marshmallows
1 cup creamy peanut butter
16 ounces white chocolate - can use a bar or chips.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper or waxed paper.
Stir together marshmallows and Rice Krispies in a large bowl.
Melt peanut butter and white chocolate together.
Stir into Rice Krispy mix.
Drop by tablespoon onto baking sheet.
Place in refrigerator until set.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Monday, January 7, 2019

A little peace in chaos!

Things have been a little crazy at work again!  Our Director of Nursing didn't work out.  There is another one hired, and it's someone I used to work with, so I'm very happy.  I know her work ethic and attitude, so this will be a good thing.  However, right now she is the Director of Nursing at another facility in our corp. and they don't want her to come to us until they have a replacement for her.  So, it's been very busy because of that, and also just plain busy because of some patients who are quite complex, and also lots of people coming for short rehab stays and going home.  Admissions and discharges are more work than you would think, so when you add it all together, it's been a bit crazy!

In January, I always love to declutter and organize at home, and when I was looking at some drawer organizers, I saw this desk organizer.

This is now setting on one side of my desk.  It makes me happy to have the things I need at my fingertips and not all on top of each other in a drawer.

 Here's the other side of my desk.  The flip calendar is a new addition to help keep my focus on the right things when it does get crazy.

 I was in the our local Christian book store when I saw this and thought it was perfect for work.

Each day has a verse or a quote like this.  I think having something like this right by the phone so I see it all the time will be a good thing!   And I have to say, that even when it's crazy, God gives strength, right?

Sunday, January 6, 2019

It's a girlie weekend!

We had the girls overnight Friday night.  It had probably been a month, because of parties and the busyness of the season, so we were happy to spend some time with them again.

We picked them up after supper and came home.  It was a dreary, rainy day so they were wearing their boots.  I was putting some things away in the kitchen and smiled when I walked past the dining room and saw this.

I actually sent this photo to Laura, with a comment about how well trained they were to line their boots up so nicely.  Laura replied that this does not happen at home,  :)  and she also thought it might be better if the boots weren't on the good rug.  True, but I still thought it was cute!

We are working on the girls room here.  We have a toddler bed that is getting small, so we're trying to change the bed situation.  We had ordered new twin mattresses and Bob was getting one out that night.

Bob, Alaina and Ruby each tried it out and said it was very comfortable.

The mattresses came in a box, and the box was even better than the mattress!  Friday night they laid  it out and laid on top of it.

 The next morning they stood it up, folded it, threw blankets over it and made a "fortress".

A box and some imagination makes for lots of fun!