Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Adam's 30th Birthday Toilet Cake!

If you know my husband you know that he's fascinated with the noises and nastiness that comes out of your...behind. If you didn't know that, well, now you do. Haha! It's one of the many reasons I love him and all of his random/awkwardness.

So in March he turned 30. I had this big surprise party planned, his friends and I had secretly all pitched in to fly his best friend in from California and the only thing he thought we were doing was going out to dinner and seeing if a few people maybe wanted to come over afterwards for a few drinks and to hang out.

I had it worked out that our older 2 boys would stay the night at Maimai's house (my mom) and everyone would be at the house while we were at dinner. I made our dinner reservations, we took the baby with us, I made sure the waiter was aware it was his birthday so they'd embarrass him by singing to him (and also to buy some time) and then we stopped at the liquor store on the way home for some beer "just in case we had a couple people over" :).

SURPRISE!!! We came through the garage like usual, everyone was SO quiet inside (I sent the warning text that we were down the street), and in he came to about 15-20 people in our house! As if that weren't overwhelming enough I told him to turn around and out came his best friend Rachel from the bathroom by the garage! Ahhhh it was just perfect, and man was he disoriented haha!

So I started to put his party together a couple of weeks before his birthday. My friend Trisha and I would talk about the plans and how she'd help decorate and get things together, let people in etc. and one day she sent me a picture of a toilet cake....with a turd in the middle...and it said "Crap You're Old". What?!? Anyone that knows Adam knows that is just perfect! So we started to entertain the idea of making it ourselves and figured we'd give it a try.

My plan was to go to her house that Thursday (his party was the next day) and have a "baking day", this is pretty typical for us so Adam wouldn't suspect a thing! We had all of the stuff we needed, we'd just do some box cake mix to make it easier and we got to creating!

Here is what we created:

I just love it!! We are not professionals by any means, this is the most intricate thing we've done regarding cake decorating, but we were pretty dang proud of ourselves!

Not that you need directions or a recipe to do this but I'll give you the gist of what we did:

*Baked 2 boxed mixes according to box directions, one in 9x13 pan and 2 in 8" round pans
*Let cool, cut 9x13 cake in half
*Frost top of one rectangle and stack second rectangle on top of frosted rectangle to make stick
*Frost around entire "tank" of toilet
*Place circle cake in front, cut a shallow hole in center of circle cake to make room for "water" and frost entire circle, including the cut-out hole
*Dye some frosting with some blue food coloring and put some in center of hole cut-out of toilet bowl
*Trisha had some chocolate covered almonds she put in the microwave for a few seconds to melt a little and that's what we used for the "turd" but I'm sure there are a ton of different options :)
*Use black frosting can to make the writing and the toilet handle

Seriously not a whole lot of work put into this but it turned out SO great and it was just perfect for my Adam :)

Now go make yourself a toilet cake! Haha!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Barbecue Beef Bake Pockets

One night a couple of weeks ago I was lost as to what I was going to make for dinner. I had a ton of frozen ground beef all separated in 1 lb. food saver bags so I figured I should try to use some of that.

Typically I'm not a big ground beef fan, I'm much more of a white meat eater, chicken and turkey are my favorite. I think what helped ruin it for me was my best friend Becca, she lived with me at my dad's house when I was 18 when her parents relocated to TX and she wanted to finish high school here in CO. We always had a seriously good time! At the time she really wanted to pursue a career as a nutritionist so we did a lot of calorie counting. She refused to eat ground beef because of the occasional "gritty" parts you would bite into. Seriously just saying it makes me cringe! That kind of stuck with me forever and then while I was pregnant with my first son I found ground beef pretty repulsing.

I just realized I'm not helping to make this recipe sound appealing haha, sorry! This recipe is SERIOUSLY good I promise!

So I felt like I should use this ground beef for something good, not just hamburger helper or something that isn't overly appealing.

One thing you should know about me is I'm not a good stove-top all. I tend to burn things. About a week ago I made breakfast for dinner and burned the bacon, my whole downstairs was covered in a thick smoke, it's just bad news. I'm much more of a casserole and slow cooker girl, big fan!

So casserole it was! I took to pinterest (of course) and looked up ground beef casseroles. There were some pretty good ones but as soon as I ran across this one I knew I had to make it! The first (and biggest) incentive for me was I already had all ingredients on hand, no trip to the store!

This is the Barbecue Beef Bake recipe that Adam and I became addicted to. How can you go wrong with crescents and cream cheese to begin with?!

Well last night I decided I wanted to put a little spin on it. I wanted to basically take this casserole and do a hot pocket style concoction. Sounds easy enough right? Wrong!

The thing is it really would've worked had I not made them so big! I took one 8-count package of refrigerated crescent rolls and quartered them with the intention of laying one quarter on top of the other and folding the sides over to make it a pocket. Problem was the pocket was way too big, not easy to transport to the pan and definitely not strong enough to just pick up and eat with your hands. So next time I do this (I will definitely be doing them again, they were still REALLY good and hubby was a huge fan) I will make the pockets half of what I did to try and make them easier to handle.

I still recommend you try this, even if it is just the original beef bake and not the pockets. So here is the recipe I did:

  • 2 packages refrigerated crescent rolls
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup corn (frozen or canned)
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons bottled Italian salad dressing
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 ounces cream cheese (give or take)
  • 1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Open and unroll the crescent rolls. Tear them into quarters (4) on the already cut seams. Pinch the crescent seams together to make a sealed rectangle.
  3. Microwave the cream cheese for 20 seconds or until it's easily spreadable. Spread on the crescent roll dough, not quite to the edge (leaving room to fold edges, I spread mine a little too far).
  4. Brown the ground been over medium heat. While the beef is cooking, combine the ketchup, brown sugar, Italian salad dressing, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce in a small bowl. Drain the beef when it's cooked through and add the sauce and corn to the pan. Stir to coat the meat in the sauce.
  5. Spoon the meat mixture onto HALF of one of the quarters over the cream cheese. Sprinkle the top with the cheddar cheese. (This is where I screwed up, remember to only do HALF of the rectangle, not the whole thing like me).
  6. Fold other half of quarter (without meat) over the meat, pinch sides together and folds them up to seal the seams.
  7. Place on a greased cookie sheet a few inches apart. You should be able to make 8 pockets from 2 packages of crescent rolls.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the crescent rolls are cooked through.
Once again keep in mind that mine are double the size of what yours should be. I'm going to go back through and do them again to replace these pictures but regardless these things are GOOD!!

I'm a huge fan of cream cheese period so this was already a winner for me! Let me know if you switch it up or have any pointers to make these different.

I can't wait for you to try these :) happy cooking!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

FINALLY attacking the back yard!

So around this time last year my mom went with me to Home Depot and so graciously decided to help get us started with the supplies we needed to make our back yard look nice. When we moved in a couple years ago the back yard was a disaster, literally ripped newspaper, broken eye glasses, pieces of broken plastic, old toys, just all kinds of stuff everywhere! That summer I picked most of it up so the kids could be back there but there was just no sense of life back there!

So back to last year. We now had the stuff we needed to make the back yard looking nice and presentable and cleaned up! I potted some veggies and some flowers, Adam got started putting the plastic border around the yard to separate it from the perimeter. That's about as far as we got, not even the perimeter was done!

I was pregnant and I couldn't stand how hot it was, I basically just sprayed a bunch of weed killer around the outside of the lawn area and called it good.

At the beginning of the year this year I started thinking about attacking it again. We had all of the stuff just sitting in the garage. The only reason we were holding back was because we were unsure where Jayse would be in kindergarten. He was accepted into our first choice school so we're able to stay where we are, yay!

So finally the hubby had a day off where he didn't have the obligation to work (he works from home so he's always working). Time to attack this yard work!

Here's the back corner before:

I had already started raking at this point so there were many more dead weeds but you get the idea. So I finished raking that back corner and got it ready to lay down the big black weed block sheet. Basically we wanted to get the sheet down and the mulch laid out so we would keep the motivation to do the rest of the yard, you know, keep our eye on the prize :)

This is how the back corner looks now:

So much better! I can't wait for the whole perimeter to look like this! Luckily this is pretty much our biggest area to mulch. We're supposed to be getting some interesting weather this week so hopefully I can get back out there and get 'er done, I'm so excited!

Hope you all have a great rest of your day :)

Friday, April 5, 2013

Organized the pantry..

I'm a firm believer that you can never be too organized, ever. When things get too cluttered I go into panic mode, it's a claustrophobic feeling really. We have a TON of stuff! Between just Adam and I we have enough, then there are 3 boys who probably have way too many clothes and toys!

The one room in my house that I am INSANE about keeping clean and organized is the kitchen. I can not STAND dishes in the sink, I hate things being left on the stove, and if I have a hard time finding anything I get irritated.

I can't even believe I let my pantry get to this point:
Ok don't judge me, haha. I have no idea how the heck I allowed this to happen, life I suppose.

A lot of the stuff I ended up throwing away. We had numerous bags of stale chips, cracker boxes with only a couple left in them, again I don't know why they made back IN the pantry.

So I picked up enough motivation to finally get 'er done and grabbed a big trash bag.

Ok I'll stop rambling, basically it comes down to this: CATEGORIZING is key for organizing. That and I use as many different plastic organizers as I can find and the dollar store is AMAZING for finding all kinds of bins etc.

Now for the reveal:
Wooooo SO much better! I love the plastic cereal bins that they have, it really helps the kids identify which kind they want too :)

Here they are side-by-side:

Not sure that there was a point to this post, who knows maybe it'll get you motivated to organize your pantry or to visit the dollar store!

On a completely unrelated note I had chocolate graham crackers with peanut butter as my snack today:
Probably not the healthiest thing on the planet but Delish!

Hope you all have a fantastic day :) Until next time!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

My first food post!

I'm so excited for my first food post, and it's CUPCAKES at that! I've been on a serious cupcake kick lately, my latest obsession if you will. I ran across this blog that was a perfect feed to my addiction, anyone been to Your Cup of Cake? She has some seriously amazing looking cupcakes! I'm not quite at the point yet of throwing my own recipes together, I still need to get the feel for it so this was an awesome reference!

It was hard to decide on which 2 flavors I wanted to do. I knew I wanted to do something fruity and I knew I would like to use my ripe bananas with some chocolate. I found her recipe for Chocolate Banana Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting and I immediately thought "WHAAAAT?!"...done. What an interesting combination, but how can you go wrong with chocolate, banana, and peanut butter??

Some of her recipes use cake box mixes, and this one really works with the devils food, how can you go wrong with devils food?! So I made my first batch of homemade cupcakes!

Oh my goodness, SO good! My frosting wasn't quite fluffy enough, I needed to whip it longer, but again: first time cupcake maker here :)

Regardless, these were a giant pile of greatness! I will definitely be making these again! Happy cupcake making :)

Why Hello!!

Greetings! :)

My name is Sarah! I've been sitting on the idea of blogging and contemplating it for awhile now. I'm the type of person that tends to over-think things. I've had my template and blog name picked out for about a week now and just kept thinking "what am I going to say?". Today I realized that there was no reason to dwell on it, I'm a spontaneous writer so it works better for me to just sit down and start typing. Not to mention if I want to be consistent with this I need to get over my fear and just do it :) SO...let me just start by kind of explaining what I'd like to see out of my blog and the things I'm interested in and like to share.

I have 3 amazing little boys who are in different stages of life. My oldest is Kindergarten bound, my middle is the toddler with a 'tude and my youngest is the baby :)

That being said I'll have a lot of kid-related things to share! A lot of other things I'd like to share are:

*party planning
*home decor

I'm sure there are a ton more! I have a very addictive personality so once I set my sights on something I obsess until I succeed haha, I sound totally crazy!

Ok I don't want to ramble forever, I want to get started sharing things with you! Thanks for visiting and I hope to see you often :)