Thursday, March 28, 2013

Love in the kitchen

Every now and then we all have one of those days, (sometimes I feel like there are few to many of those days), but the days that it seems like everything that can go wrong is. Let me tell you about mine.
So work sucks (like usual but I don't want to gossip so I won't tell you why) but I finally get off and after a brief trip to the store with my Sissy for some pasta sauce and soda, I get home and take out the fixings for dinner (3 hr before I plan on cooking it just so yall know) and I settle down to find the internet isn't working (Got this fixed even though I think the poor IT guy now takes me at my word when I say that most  technology hates me) I get a little down time till the Hubb calls me and says he is off work (which is my cue to start dinner) I go into the kitchen and guess what nothing is thawed and the pots I need apparently have not been washed. So I get to try and get the chicken thawed the potatoes peeled (which I didn't even use) and stuff clean, when Hubb walks through the door. Now I;m not in a good mood, nothing is ready, and its safe to say I was not looking or feeling my best right there, but he comes into the tiny kitchen and laughs at my grumpy face then proceeded to make a nuisance of himself to try and make me smile. (many kisses later I think I lost the grump somewhere) and then Hubb tried to help me in the kitchen but honestly two newlyweds in a small space just made dinner even later then it should have been.
But anyway I made awesomeness last night for dinner (thanks for the idea sissy) and I wish I snapped a picture of it (but I wasn't thinking straight yet) I made bacon wrapped chicken, served over pasta with some mixed veggies on the side. (Once I got everything worked out) It was super easy, I cut the HUGE chicken breasts I had in half then wrapped them in some bacon (no toothpicks needed it sticks just fine if you're careful and I don't like wood in my food) tossed it in the oven for about 30 min on 350 (you might want to baby sit a little because the time is really dependant on your oven and how thick your chicken is)
The bacon grease makes the chicken super moist and it smelled so amazing, my Mama Kendall called me with a SOS right before this finished to help her peel some coconuts, so as soon as it came out I packed it and John into the car and went to mamas (where I almost cut my thumb off, don't worry I just cut my nail down the middle <yeah and I thought work sucked yesterday>) But anyway It smelled so good mama stole a piece for her lunch tomorrow, bonus she sent me home with her homemade chicken and dumplings and I will have to wrestle the recipe from her to share with yall.
Much love--
Elizabeth

Sunday, March 24, 2013

I shalt learn from my mistakes

I tell myself this as I spent close to a half hour scrubbing dishes (and I'm sitting here not even completely done).  I am trying to remind myself that if I would just do them as I make them this wouldn't happen. Secondly if I would do them all while I am washing them instead of a little every day maybe it wont feel like I am constantly having to do a whole bunch of dishes everyday.
The Hubby was really nice and helped me dry (you know is it just me or do men turn into babies when asked to help with dishes, or is it just my big strong army man) but there are still dishes that needed to soak a while that (even though we are supposed to trade days) I will have to do tomorrow, and tomorrow is my day to go to my parents house, so it wont get done till really late and I will most likely be grumpy (yay)

Oh well such is life. I will not let the dishes bring me down! I had the most amazing weekend with my church and my God. Every Easter my church (LifeNow)  goes on a Resurrection retreat, but this year to accommodate family time on Easter Sunday we had a Rebuild retreat on Palm Sunday instead. Between Pastor Alan and Pastor Jesse the messages were amazingly emotional and insightful. We learned that sometimes to make a building better you just need to completely deconstruct it and get rid of all the junk and mess ups and everything that's holding you back before you can be made into the temple for God that you were made to be. Then we talked about how important a good biblically rooted foundation is in our lives and how easily it is to get things twisted in today's society. Next was how to build the right walls, not to isolate ourselves from everybody, but to protect us from our environment and to try to make living Holy as easy as we can for ourselves by building guardrails between us and sin. Then we talked about Interior and Exterior design (not decorating which is rearranging the junk you own to make it look like better junk, but intentionally and logically deciding where to put walls and doors and windows and how to make the space the best it can be) Pastor Alan went into detail about the temple Solomon built for God and how we upkeep the our temples for Him.
All in all it was a truly incredible time to recharge and reconnect with my wonderful church family and to remember how God wants us to be living and praising His name. We were rained in the entire time which was its own kind of blessing, I think everyone was saying how nice it was to just relax with each other and not always be running from one thing to the next (plus with work and everything else this was the first time I have felt fully rested in a loooooooooong time).

Anyway coming soon is a meal plan, some recipes that I want to try and share with you, as well as I want to tell you about my Grandma MacDuffie (with the help of my Mommy) who recently went to glory to spend some time at the feet of Jesus.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Thou shalt clean your house

I know lent is almost over but I think I need to add something onto my Lenten fast. Cleaning.
Why? Because I suck at making myself do it, I  make all these plans to clean things and when I need to have things done and then nothing happens. My original lent fast was the snooze button. I gave up the 20 min I spend hitting the snooze button for some bible study time and its been great, BECAUSE I made a promise to God that I would do that every morning and you don't break promises. So I was thinking if I make cleaning a promise then maybe some of it will actually get done.
For instance Ive done about half of the laundry, and thats great and all but I have a kitchen full of dirty dishes that need to get done and I need to prepare John and I for church this weekend. I told my hubby I would clean out his car and I have to make some snacks, and instead im on Hulu and Pinterest (shame on me)
So I promise as soon as I finish this episode I am getting off of this computer and cleaning!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Jesus who?

At my Church (LifeNow Church) we have been doing a series called Jesus who? where we have been learning about the facets of Jesus when He was with us. We leaned about Jesus was a shepherd, carpenter  healer, teacher, and servant in the past weeks and they were all very amazing sermons that I highly recommend yall checking out HERE. But this week our pastor didn't do a whole lot of talking, this week he reminder us that Jesus IS our Savior. Honestly today I was convicted about how little convicts me. I've grown very complacent in my faith, and if there is one thing I've learned through my walk with God is I can't do complacent. It just doesn't work out for me, I have to be VERY deliberate to do things like study, ready my Bible, and pray, otherwise it just doesn't happen. Then next thing you know God is no longer first in my mind, and my heart follows suit. I am very guilty when it come to making sure the He is number one in my life. I commit idolatry constantly in my heart, putting other things before him, worrying about pleasing me and others and not my Lord, and every now and then He has to remind me of it. So here is to deliberation, to directness, to making sure that while everything else is taken care of I take care of my relationship with my Lord first. My husband reminded me that marriage is a triangle with God as the top point and husband and wife as the bottom, and as they move closer to God, they in turn move closer together. So while obviously I need to make sure I am meeting the needs of my hubby, if I focus on the Lord then in turn I can be a better wife to my husband and on an even bigger scale be more like the creation that God wants and needs me to further his kingdom. So right now I think I need a little bit of the shepherd in Jesus, He has broken me to keep me from wandering to far and now I get to be carried till I can figure out how to walk better with my Lord.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

White beef stew


So last night I made beef stew for the Hubby and I, and I nearly killed him as soon as he walked in the door. A little back story on this... My husband knows because I don't know really how to cook I get really antsy when its time to eat something I've made (especially if its the first time I've done so) and he has learned that no matter what he has to make me feel like I did well before he can offer any changes (he can cook, just doesn't). Now I've been working very hard on planning and budgeting and shopping and all these things, before I even get the meat thawed (which I forgot to set out before I left for work so it got a bath in the sink to help things along as soon as I got home). I made one of his simple favorites (corn bread) to go with the stew, AND because I was so nervous I babysat the business out of the stew as it was cooking (ok, so this wasn't his fault but mine). I greet him at the door with a kiss and he peeks in the kitchen and BAM! almost gets killed by his wife ( viricide is the -cide word for killing your husband by the way, I know because I looked it up ten seconds ago) He looked in the pot and saw the stew was white and in his shock just blurted it out. Now I know most stews are brown but I had to change a couple of things around in the kitchen to make this meal work for me. For the liquids I used milk and in replace of beef broth, some water. Why? Well a couple of reasons, 1 I forgot, 2 it wasn't in the budget 3 water worked just fine with the beef bullion seasoning cube.  But it did make it white, and the hubby is alive because as soon as he saw my face he immediately started to kiss me so I couldn't get mad at him (his plan worked out sadly well). Oh well I will give you the recipe of what I did last night but the best thing about stew is, anything goes. I had celery going bad and that's why that in there, but look through your fridge and sneak those left overs in the stew pot, I dare you.

1 Package of beef stew meat,
Vegetables (The bigger chunks the better, I used a mix of baby broccoli  cauliflower and carrots as well as the celery that was going bad.)
Potatoes (doesn't matter red or yellow, I used yellow with skins still attached because I like rustic potatoes and I'm incredibly lazy and didn't want to go through the extra step of peeling.)
Milk and beef broth (or water with beef bullion cubes)
Flour (to thicken up the stew, I meant to throw rice in there to thicken it up some more but yet again, I forgot)
Seasoning (Thyme, Salt <quite a bit in all actually but if you treat your arteries better then mine you can regulate this> pepper and I used some chopped cloves and Italian seasoning cause I thought they would go good with the stew <they did > )
This is where you add the Worcestershire sauce but I forgot that to (maybe I should rename this the Forgotten stew)
1 start cooking potatoes in a separate pot 2 Brown your meat (you don't cook it all the way through you just have to brown it it will finish cooking in the liquid) cover with your liquids, add veggies and seasonings 3 stir in flour,  4 as soon as  potatoes are soft drain them and add to the stew 5 cover and try your best to leave it alone so everything can mix together and blend (I already told you how well I did at this, do try to be better then me) And Ta-Da you have beef stew!

Why don't you make some stew and let me know what you added to it and how it turned out (it was pretty good if I do say so myself and John sure seemed to like it, though he was really excited by the corn bread)
Much love-
Elizabeth

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The results

Its a little later then I had planned to post this but I wanted you all to know how I did shopping yesterday. I set myself a budget of $60 and for once it was hard mentally to stick to that because of how empty our kitchen had gotten. We needed SOOOO much to replenish, or so I thought. When I made my meal plan and shopping list I knew I would be pushing it, but some times what has to be done has to be done. I spent $62.48, first I have to say I'm proud of myself, second the only reason why I went over was my Hubby asked for some ice cream, it was the only thing he wanted and he even knew what type (he doesn't do that often so I knew he was really wanting it) and I couldn't deny him (almost did but when I saw that cookie dough ice cream looking at me I knew I had to take it home to John). I bought everything I needed for the meals I had planed and even ended up with enough that I can make some hamburger helper and curry next week (yeah two meals already on the menu!) The best thing about shopping at the commissary is there is no tax, which works out really well for someone who forgets to count for that in her head when she is adding up what she has in her cart toward her budget, (more then once I've had to put something back to pay for tax).

Tonight I am making the first cooked meal on my meal plan...... Rustic beef stew. In a post later tonight I will tell you all about it ;) until then my friends.....
Much love -
Elizabeth

Monday, March 11, 2013

Hur-ray!

Well today was a pretty good day, I donated some clothes to the Good Will and then I went to this awesome (and probably bad for me) place called the Chamblin Bookmine, where they bought some of the books I don't read anymore and I bought a book and a bunch of movies for like $10 (after the store credit from the sold books).
Sadly our little family is back down to 1 car as the van we were using from our parents is in the shop for an unknown time, but I will do my best to see this as a way to cut down on gas costs.
On the bright side of that my Mama had to pick me up from the auto shop and I'm going home with all their duplicate movies and a grocery shopping date with my Mommy, tomorrow after work at the NEX, which is where we should shop but is to far away from me to be worth it, (but if its not my gas ;) then its so worth it)
I cant wait to get started working on my meal plan and to impress my baby with the awesome homemade food I will cook for him :D