Thursday, September 30, 2010

So Simple Salsa

So this isn't a recipe exactly...but it is yummy!  And it is a very flexible recipe.  Basically just add as much of these indredients as you like to taste.


Chopped tomatoes

Chopped onions
(These are the main componants to the salsa)

Chopped cilantro
Lime juice
Sugar and salt
1 can rinsed and drained black beans
Frozen corn
Cooked brown rice (go easy on this)


I participate in the link parties found here.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Well, almost wordless!

I took my daughter to the Zoo here in our new town and was quite impressed.  Here are a couple of photos that just make me smile.

I participate in the link parties found here.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tasty Tuesday: Bean, Rice and Cheese Burritos


What isn't to love about a yummy bean, rice and cheese burrito!?  Simple, easy, cheap, and beans and rice make a complete protein.  Did you know that?  Yup folks it's true.

I make these really simply of course. 

I will take a can of pinto beans, put them on the stove and heat and mash them up to make my own refried beans.

Then, to make them extra special, brush a bit of butter on the flour tortilla and heat on the stove.  Your tortillas will get a bit crunchy and really yummy.

Layer your beans, rice of choice and cheese on the burrito.  Serve with sour cream and chips and salsa. 

Easy, simple, inexpensive.  Yum!

(Join me Thursday for the salsa "recipe" that I used that you also see in the photo!  It is soooo yummy!!!)

I participate in the link parties found here.

Monday, September 27, 2010

You are SOOOO talented!

Here are the most viewed links from last week's link party! 

Thanks to all to joined in the fun.

Remember there is still time to link up to this week's link party!  (Scroll down!)


Friday, September 24, 2010

Link Party!

Thanks for joining me for this week's link party! 

Remember to visit one or two other links!

Have a great weekend!

I participate in the link parties found here.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Candied Nuts

I LOVE candied nuts in salads. 

My husband LOVES candied nuts in salads or just by the handful.

Several months ago I bought a very small bag of candied nuts for a salad for about $6.  They were expensive in my opinion, but they were so delicious. 

Then, my husband found the remaining nuts.  And finished them off in less then 5 minutes. 

He said "Hun!  We should get some more of those nuts!  Those were really good!"

I replied, "Yes.  And you just downed $5 of nuts in one handful."

Hm.  Call me cheap, but that is an expensive bag of nuts to just sit and eat like candy.

So, I set out to candy my own and discovered how simple (and inexpensive!) it really is!

Candied Nuts

  • 1/2 c any type of nuts
  • 1/3 c of granulated sugar (can use more or less to preferred taste)
  • Put sugar in a small pan or pot over the stove and heat on medium - medium/high heat.
  • Sugar will start to melt and brown.  Stir often and watch carefully.  You can burn sugar very easily.
BE VERY CAREFUL!  Melted sugar is EXTREMELY hot.  I learned this the hard way, not thinking clearly, I touched the melted sugar to "taste-test" it.  I have a HUGE blister on said finger from the bad burn I got from it.  Ouch.  So, please, be careful not to come in contact with the sugar. 
  • Once all sugar is melted, turn the heat off and add the nuts in, stirring well to coat all nuts.
  • Spread nuts out of wax paper (I put my wax paper on a cookie sheet to keep the heat off of my counters.) and separate nuts using two forks working quickly as sugar will harden fast.
  • Let cool.  Break into smaller pieces if desired.
  • Enjoy on a yummy salad or by the handful :-)

I participate in the link parties found here.

Monday, September 20, 2010

You are SOOOO talented!

Thanks to all who participated in last week's link party. 

I am sorry this week's party didn't post until so late.  But it is still up and running if you would like to join in!  Just scroll down!

So today I wanted to feature some of your fabulous most clicked on ideas from last week.

Wow!  You guys are so talented, I wish I could show them all off...but that would be a bit redundant.  So if you missed any of these great ideas, be sure to scroll down and check them out!

I participate in the link parties found here.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Link Party

Wow. I can't believe I didn't post this earlier today! I am sooooo sorry.

So, without making you wait any longer. Here is this week's link party!

I participate in the link parties found here.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Yes.  I finally did it.  My blog is officially on Facebook!

Please feel free to stop by, leave a comment, become a friend or "like" me! 

I hope to see you over there!

Banana Muffins

Do you remember when I mentioned that I was banned from making banana bread in my house?

Well, I ended up with these the other day:

And I really hate to throw bananas away.  (Which doesn't makes sense since they are so cheap...but it is an odd guilt complex I have.)

Anyway, I decided to try to make something with them but decided to try a new banana bread recipe, which I ended up still modifying, and making muffins instead of bread.

They turned out GREAT!!  HURRAY! 

Here's my recipe:

Banana Bread

  • 1 1/2 c mashed bananas (approximately 3 bananas)
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • 2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • dash of salt
  • 1/4 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 t ground nutmeg
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c oil
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mash bananas and mix with brown sugar and set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
  4. Add eggs, granulated sugar and oil in with the banana mixture and mix. 
  5. Combine banana and flour mixture and stir just until moistened. 
  6. Spoon batter into muffin tins.
  7. Bake at 350 for approximately 10-15 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.

(Please remember to give credit where credit is due.  This is my original recipe.  I welcome you to use it for your own baking purposes with reckless abandon!  But if you post it on your blog or elsewhere, please link back and give credit to  Thank you.)

I participate in the link parties found here.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

So at my daughters preschool (it is at a church, but not at the church we attend) they say a little prayer before snack time.

Today she shared with me what the prayer sounded like.

(To the tune of "Where is Thumpkin" she sang...)

God our Father, God our Father
Once again, once again
Thank you for our blessings
Thank you for our blessings
Oh man! Oh man!


I had to stop and think about that last line there.

Then I realized that it was supposed to be "Amen" pronounced "Ah-men."

ha ha ha! Kids are!

I participate in the link parties found here.


Wow!  Somehow in the mix of things I didn't realize that this post didn't actually post.  Does that ever happen to you? 

Well, anyway, the winner of the free crocheted item from Cutesy Crochet and Crafts is...

#29 (selected through I forgot to copy the image)

Kristen said...
I like the Crochet Baby Beanie with interchangeable flowers!

Kristen, CONGRATULATIONS!  Be sure to email me at!

Thank you all for partcipating!

I participate in the link parties found here.

So You Think You're Crafty

Well, as I mentioned before, I MADE IT THROUGH THE AUDITIONS for So You Think You're Crafty!  HURRAY!!!

Which means, I will be competing in Season 5! 

Thanks to everyone who headed over there to vote.

Do you know which one was mine?  Did you guess right?

Mine was the cupcake apron!

Well thank you to all who voted in the audition round. 

Be sure to join me over at So You Think You're Crafty begining in October for Season 5!

I participate in the link parties found here.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Flower Bag

Guess what?!?!  I have a Hobby Lobby!!  I have never been close to one, but now I am!  Hurray! 

Well, I went there recently and found a ton of fun things on clearance.  Like, crazy low prices, clearance.

For example, I found a cute, plain, felted bag for $1.20.  They had 4 of them, 2 in pink and 2 in turquoise.  I couldn't pass that up.  So now I have 4 little bags! 

For the first one, I really wanted to add a fun flower to it. So I bought 6" of taffeta fabric and went to work.

First, I cut 6 circle, all slightly smaller then the last one.

Next, I took a lighter and singed the edges.  This makes the fabric curl slightly.

Then I sewed the fabric flower layers together. 

Then I sewed a button to the flower, and the entire flower to the bag!

Didn't it turn out so cute!

My daughter immediately confiscated this bag.  She thought it was just the best bag ever!  And I kind of agree...I might have to make myself one!

(You can also use this same flower making fabric to make a flower for a hair barrette!  That would be adorable!)

I participate in the link parties found here.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


It's been a fun weekend around here!

I had a few new friends over last night for Fondue! Yum!

I got a few more boxes unpacked! (hurray!)

And I just looked at the final numbers for So You Think You're Crafty. And it looks like I will be part of season 5!!! HURRAY!!

So it's been a great weekend around here.

Have you been up to anything fun?

I participate in the link parties found here.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Link Party!

Thank you for stopping by to join in this week's link party! 

Here are the top clicked on links from the last couple of weeks!

I enjoy looking at all of your links each week!  You are all such an inspiration to me! 

Have a fabulous week and thanks for linking up!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Where have I been?!?!

Where have I been all week?

1.  Immersed in Boxes.  Help!  I still have so many left to unpack!

2.  Preschool!  Ack!  My daughter started preschool this week and I am trying to get back into a routine again!  Since it is only 2.5 hours, 4 days a week, and it is 20 minutes from my house, it doesn't seem worth it to come back home.  So I have been using that time to exercise, grocery shop and window shop.  It makes good use of the time, but by the time we all get home, it has been a long tiring morning for ALL of us, especially the days when I it is taking me a while to get back into exercising after having a baby! 

3.  Family time.  My husband has had a weird schedule this week.  Which means we have gotten to see him at different times then normal.  Things like this always seem to throw a kink in the routine.  But we have enjoyed having him around a bit more then usual!

4.  Did I mention all the boxes I still have to unpack!

5.  Preparing for my daughter's 4th birthday that was today!  We made cupcakes, blew up balloons, and had lots of fun.  We even got her ears pierced.  She has been begging for 6 months to get it done, so we finally gave in.  Once we were there though, she was really worried about the whole thing...well...that's another story for another day.  But now, she has beautiful sparkly pink earrings and is LOVING it!!  She said it was the best part of her birthday! 

6.  Mockingjay.  Yes.  I started reading The Hunger Games series a little while ago.  Mockingjay, the third and final book, was recently released and I have not been able to put it down!  Man it is a good read!  I mean, I am taking care of my kids and all but any spare moments I have I have spent reading that book!  It was sooo good.  I am sad that I finished it tonight.  What will I read next?

And I am sure I have done a million other things, but I am too tired to remember them all.

I am off to bed, but don't worry, at 1am EST, as usual, my link party will be up and running (as long as my schedule ahead post works like it should!)  So please link up, encourage others to link up, and visit a few other links!

Happy (almost) Friday!

Monday, September 6, 2010

So You Think You're Crafty

I hope you all had a great Labor Day.

Today, instead of a post, I am asking that you go over to So You Think You're Crafty and vote

Have you heard of So You Think You're Crafty?!?  It's a fun site where there are 10 crafters, 10 weeks of crafts and each week you get to vote for your favorite craft!  The person with the least votes leaves the "show" and the rest continue until a winner is chosen!  It is really a neat idea!

Anyway, this week is the audition week for the next Season!  And you're truly is participating!  Hurray!

Boy, I sure hope I get to move on because I have some AWESOME ideas for some of the weeks coming up!!!

Anyway, I am nervous as can be and hope hope HOPE I get picked to move on. 

So, please head over there and vote for your favorite craft

Friday, September 3, 2010


Today is an amazing day!  Today we celebrate reaching 300 followers!  Thank you thank you thank you!

So, I have an amazing giveaway lined up that I am so excited about! 

Cutesy Crochet and Crafts is a great shop that makes some very very cute items.  Here are just a few of my favorites:

(aawww....cute baby!  Sorry, baby not included :-)

(I soooo want one of these for my son :-)

Man there are so many cute items over at her shop, stop on by and check it out!

The Giveaway today is fabulous!  You get to choose any one of her cute crocheted hats

And with cold weather looming around the corner, I am sure you all know a cute little munchkin who could use a cute little hat!  So get ready to enter this great giveaway and let your friend's know about it as well! 

But before I get to the giveaway, I wanted to let you know that Cutesy Crochet and Crafts has also offered an AMAZING deal to all of my followers!  She is offering 50% off all crochet purchases from her shop (excluding the baby blanket) simply by letting her know you are visiting her from my blog!  Isn't that amazing!!!  So go check out Cutesy Crochet and Crafts.

Now, on to the rules:

1. Post one comment for every entry that you earn below. Be sure to post your comments on this blog post for entry in this contest.

2. 1 comment = 1 entry (so be sure to post a separate comment for each entry you earn!)

3. Include all pertinent information in your comment including what you have done to earn that entry.

4. This giveaway will run until Friday September 10th, 2010, 11:59pm EST at which point 1 winner will be chosen at random using

5. Check back here Monday, September 13th to see if you have won! The winner will be posted in a blog post and they will have 3 days to claim their prize by contacting me at If the winner does not contact me in that time frame, they will forfeit their prize, and another winner will be chosen.

How to Earn Your Entries:

1 entry = head over to Cutesy Crochet and Crafts shop check out their great shop! Come back here and leave a comment telling us what your favorite item is that they sell.

1 entry = go to the bottom of this post and enter my LINK PARTY! Come back here and leave 1 comment telling us what you linked up!

1 entry = blog about this giveaway on your blog! You must link to and/or use my button in your post! Encourage your readers to come and enter the giveaway! Come back here and leave 1 comment including the direct URL of your post where you tell your readers about this giveaway.

2 entries = become of Follower of Simply Designing (or if you are a follower already, just say so!)

2 entries = buy an item from Cutesy Crochet and Crafts shop. (Remember, she is offering 50% off all crochet purchases excluding the baby blanket just by mentioning that you found her through my blog!!)  Come back here and told us what you purchased.

2 entries = add Simply Designing's button to your blog or webpage (include your URL where you added our button to your page please)

Remember to post a separate comment for each entry you earn.

If you do all of the above things, you can earn 9 entries!

Good Luck!

Now, on to this week's LINK PARTY!!!! (P.S. - I really hope you take the time to visit at least one link on my link party and leave some comment love! Thanks!)

(Oh...and sorry for my lack of visits this week.  I am still unpacking...sooo many boxes...I promise to do better this week!)

I participate in the link parties found here.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Polka Dotted Table Runner

Do you like this cute polka dotted table runner?  (Yes was for that baby shower I keep telling you about.  Sorry if you are sick of it.)

It was really easy to make.  This was actually my inspiration for the entire shower.  I found these polka dotted placemats at my local dollar store. 

They were polka dotted with stripes on the long side.  I trimmed off all the edges, cut off the stripes and sewed it all together. 

Fairly easy (and I don't really sew so if I can do it, you can!), and very cheap: $4 plus thread which I already had. 

And doesn't it look cute?

I participate in the link parties found here.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

PomPom Re-Use

Do you remember these?

If you want the tutorial on how to make these super cute tissue paper PomPoms, go here

I decided to use them as my center piece for the ice cream sundae baby shower I recently held.

Aren't they so cute!?!

I participate in the link parties found here.