Sunday, September 25, 2016


About a month ago, I rec'd an invite to my friend, Andrea's, 30th surprise birthday party.  After emailing her sister and asking if anything was needed, she reached out a few days later and asked if the girls would decorate some poster boards and if they wanted to meet Andrea at the end of the driveway and 'drive' her up to the house on the golf cart.  I said 'Yes!  They would love it!' and they did.
The spent about an hour decorating pink poster boards.  Adding A LOT of glitter b/c, duh, Andrea loves sparkles! 
We got to the house, the signs were taped to the golf cart and we anxiously awaited the call that she was on the way.
When the phone finally rang, the girls jumped on the cart with Stacy and drove down the long driveway from her parents home to the road.  When Andrea & her b/f pulled into the driveway, the surprise was real!  She was shocked.  She switched places with Stacy and (very teary eyed) rode up the house, with both sides of the drive lined up with her friends yelling surprise.
The girls loved every second of it and couldn't wait to drive the golf cart a little more.

Andrea's family is like extended family and they are all so wonderful to my girls.  Her mom, Debbie and aunts talked with the girls and let them drive them around on the golf cart.

In the weeks leading up to her party, I was searching for the perfect gift.  She was turning 30 and it had to be as awesome as her.  Her house is decorated so pretty and her hobbies are concerts and traveling (she had just gotten home from a trip to Greece the weekend before).  What could I find for her? 
I was in Kirklands and ran across a BEAUTIFUL, framed photo of Greece.  It couldn't have been more perfect!

I excitedly purchased the picture and counted down the days until her party.  While, I would never normally buy something that is a. so large & b. a wall decoration (b/c everyone's taste is different), I was drawn to this one.  I felt like she would appreciate it, not only b/c she had just gotten home from a week in Greece, but also b/c she's 1/2 Greek!

She said she loved it and couldn't wait to hang it.  That made me so happy.  She has been an amazing friend and all I wanted was something that was perfect for her.

Happy 30th Andrea.  I hope your next 30 are even more amazing.  We love you!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Second Wind

Right now, the girls are fully immersed into fall sports.  I mean, holy volleyballsoccercheerrunning season.  I am exhausted and even though I'm not the one out there running or volleying, I have no energy by the time we walk into the house at (most evenings) 8 pm!
I keep telling myself I need to do a weekly meal prep.  I know it will make life easier, but I also know that it is just a little more work than I want to participate in.
Our meals have been on repeat...spaghetti, sloppy joes, cold cut sandwiches, frozen pizza, turk burg w/mac & cheese. 
Everyone is over it.
During one of the many practices, I decided to look at pinterest for dinner ideas, instead of reading my book.

Pinterest.  I haven't been on to browse & pin in...a year...two?  Yes, I have looked up specific things - but I don't browse like I used to.
While going through the INSANE amount of pins on my recipe board (let's get real - I will NEVER cut the girls sandwiches in cute little shapes of animals) I decided I would clean it up. 

Have you ever tried to 'clean up' your pinterest boards?  Does that happen?  Well, I tried.  I was able to get about 3 boards cleaned, all the while thinking the whole idea was dumb.  I have 3,000 pins!  It's safe to say I will probably never do 2,991 of them.  Ugh.

Anyway, while I was cleaning out the recipe idea one, I ran across this yummy looking dinner idea.
So, that evening, after practice, we ran to the store to get a few of the missing ingredients and I made it for dinner.
While it was VERY good and this is something we will definitely make again in the future, attempting a new recipe at 7:45 in the evening is ridiculous!!  But I had caught my 2nd wind at that point and was ready to cook.

Our family is NOT gluten free, so I did not follow the recipe strictly.  And I even made a few changes during the prep.

Here is my version of this delicious Chicken Cordon Bleu casserole

3 1/2 cups cooked rice (we LOVE rice)
3 cups cooked chicken (I used rotisserie chicken from the cold section in the meat dept)
6 slices of swiss cheese
8 slices of cut up deli ham
1 cans of cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup crushed saltine crackers or gluten free panko
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon parsley
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

While I was mixing it, I was waiting for Dennis to find a second can of the cream of chicken, I decided it was too thick (for our family tastes) and added another 1/4 cup of milk & told Dennis to quit looking for the 2nd can of cream of chicken b/c I didn't want it.

Personally, I thought it was perfect that way. AND leftovers were just as delicious!  Maybe even a little better :)

Let me know if you try this recipe and what you think!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Wordless Wednesday - Sports Edition

Cheer Practice

Cadence - Soccer game

Bry - soccer scrimmage

Cai - volleyball practice