Ingredient of the month: Cream of Chicken Soup

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Easter GIVEAWAY!!!

It's almost Easter which means that it's time for another giveaway!! What are you playing for this time? Winner(s) can pick one of these choices:

1 I Spy bag. You can choose from any of these shapes: dinosaur, fish, train, butterfly, heart, or flower. And you can pick from the colors above.


This necklace/key holder


This Placemat Purse


3 of the above items: flower clips, headbands (pink-child size, black-adult size), and child's belt.

**each prize is brand new and never used

Here are the rules:
  • Anyone can enter! Just leave a comment telling us how you celebrate Easter!
  • Only ONE comment per person, additional comments will be deleted.
  • Giveaway will end Sunday April 5th at 11:59pm (central time).
  • Winner will be chosen using and posted Monday morning.
  • If you are a winner email within 24 hours and tell us your prize choice!
  • For every 50 comments we will add another winner!! So spread the word!
Want some extra entries? Here are some things you can do:
  • 1 extra entry for becoming a follower (over there on the left!). If you already are then you automatically have an extra entry!
  • 1 extra entry for adding our button to your blog. If you already have one just remind us in your comment.
  • And 1 more extra entry for blogging about the giveaway.
  • If you do any of these things DON'T leave an additional comment. But make sure you let us know in your 1st comment and we'll figure in all the extra entries at the end. (If you forget to mention any of these things or you do them after your first comment has already been posted, no worries!! You can leave another comment and we'll record your extra entries and then delete it.)

And if we get over 100 comments we'll add in a bonus choice:

Brand new Twilight DVD

Ready?? GO! Good luck!

Song Ideas

I want to put together a DVD of pictures of Ella over the last year for her birthday. I am looking for good song suggestions!

Conference Fun

I'm sure many of you are like me and really look forward to General Conference -- except for wondering how you're going to entertain the troops and still enjoy conference, and hopefully *fingers crossed* help them to get something out of it, too! My little people are still rather little, but I thought I'd post a few thoughts, and ask for yours, too! Some are for younger kids and some are for older, but it's fun to have options! Last session I did the following things:

* I gave my daughter printouts of ties and had her color them to look like the speakers
* I made a flip chart of the Apostles and she sat tried to find them each in her 'book'
* We had a 'home primary' in the break between conferences
* We always make special treats to have in the morning (like cinnamon rolls, etc.) session
* We made a picnic lunch to eat while we were watching the second session.

This year there are some other things we'll try:

* A 'remake' of King Mosiah's story
(there are a lot of other great ideas at this site, but many of them are too old for my children. I printed them out and will use them later, though!)
* I also found some great ideas in March's Ensign.
* I'm going to cut out pictures of temples, scriptures, people praying, and some of the members of the Twelve -- just church-related things and put them on a poster board, and everytime they hear them use one of those words, or see one of those people talking, they get a 'treat'.
* April 2009 Conference Packet

Do any of you have fun things you do for conference?


Free Printable To-Do Lists

These are cute and .pdf formatted so you can print them off at your leisure.




4 or Less Recipes

In my area we just have a very small Branch (congregation) and the poor missionaries get fed only a few days each week.

Usually I wouldn't worry to much about this, but these two happened to mention that they had eaten Mac and Cheese for the 4 days before we fed them.

I felt bad and decided it might be useful to compile a bunch of simple recipes for them to use. So I'm looking for things that take about 3-4 ingredients (not anything like steak) to make.

Does anyone have any ideas? Anything simple and easy that two 19 year old guys could cook on the days no one else is feeding them?

I think they'd really appreciate it, and if we get enough everyone could hand their missionaries a little booklet.

So show me what you got ladies!


72 hour kit

Are you prepared for an emergency? We have seen many different types of emergencies happen within the last few years around the world and I often think to myself "how would I have handled that!" or "am I prepared for something like that?" The answer could be Yes! In my last ward I was the Emergency Preparedness Leader and one of our challenges was to help everyone in the ward build a 72 hour kit if they didn't already have one and help those who had one update it or improve it. In the past I have seen the long list of items that we should have in a kit and have immediately become overwhelmed! It seems kind of daunting to gather all of that stuff and can be expensive. You can buy a prepared kit from many online sources but if you want to build your own hopefully this can help you. I broke down a basic 72 hr kit list into 19 weeks (it was from sept. until the end of the year) and put a weekly recommendation in the ward bulletin. The ward had a great time following along each week.

I have heard a lot of great ideas for 72 hour kits:
- Keep them in the coat closet by your door
- Have a kit in the car
- Bring it out during conference weekend to check expiration dates
- have a mock emergency and try to live on the food for 3 days

I would also like to hear from you! Do you have any great 72 hr kit suggestions to share?

To see the 19 week breakdown either download the image below or double click on it to enlarge it. Hopefully that will work, if not let me know!


Tricks of the Trade Q: A Good Book?

I'm an avid reader and find it to be one of my most frequent escapes from that ever lurking drudgery. So, naturally, I'm always looking for something new. What are some of your favorite books--and their authors? (no more than 5 please)

Here's my list:

These is My Words by Nancy Turner

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

A Gift From the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

Persuasion by Jane Austen


Breast Feeding?

I definitely know that breast feeding is best, but it has honestly been a huge struggle with both of my kids and I've been kind of worried about it this time around. I'll of course give it my best effort for the third baby, but I thought this was a very interesting article that gives a seldom-voiced perspective. Let me know what you think...


One Hour Craft - Mirror Necklace Holder

Okay, are you ready for another really fun and simple craft? I loved making this, it was easy, fun, and very functional. I normally just have my necklaces strewn all over the place and this was a great way to help me organize them a little better. So.... what you need:

- a plain wood picture frame, any size you want
-material, enough to cover the frame and little extra to cover
the middle part inside
-a mirror, it should fit in the hole of the frame
(these are really cheap at Michaels, come in a variety of shapes, and have about 4
in a package, so if you live close to people and want to make these together, share
the mirrors, or make a bunch and give them as gifts!)
-knobs or hooks (however many you want, I used two)
-glue gun, modge podge, and ribbon for embellishments

First - cut out your material to fit your frame, leave about 1 inch to wrap around the back. Don't forget to cut out the center hole. Now, using modge podge, pull the material tight and glue it to the back of the frame. Make sure you go over the edges really well with the glue.

Second, take some cardboard (or in my case, I had some cork board laying around) and cover it the same way you did in the first step. This is going to go in the frame, in place of the picture, and we are going to hot glue the mirror to this piece, so it should be sturdy.

Third, stick the covered carboard piece into the frame and secure it, then using hot glue, glue the mirror in place in the middle of the frame. Then, take your knobs and hot glue them where you want them on your frame.

Lastly, I used some ribbon, and made a little flower out of fabric and hot glued them on. Now, add some jewelry, hang it up and pat yourself on the back!! This was such a fun project to make. I hope you enjoy, and PLEASE don't forget to post a picture when you are done!!!PS - I wish I could take credit for this idea, but I'm not THAT creative! :) I got this idea from here.... she has a little different take on it, but very cute none- the- less, and you may think her tutorial is better. It's okay if you do, I won't be mad. I like mine because of the mirror, I always need a mirror when I put on my jewelry.

To see more examples from other contributors click here.


Add some Spice

Hello ladies! I have a very simple question. I frequently feel that I need a new wardrobe, that the one I've got just isn't very stylish. Several things that I have are from high school, and well I would love to go on a shopping spree. Obviously with the question of what we would all do with $100, we would all love that. But my question is this: what are some things I can do with my present wardrobe that doesn't require spending a lot of money? I have several solid colored shirts and I feel like I'm wearing the same thing every week. I have thought about making some cute scarfs, but I don't know that I'm a scarf person. Ideas for the unstylish??? Help! (things I could make would be great!)

The $1 Project

My little girl has had this big closet door she's been trying to deal with for several months now. It's one of those annoying ones that's always falling off the hinges and since she's only seven it makes it difficult to keep that area of her room looking kept up. Finally the other day I had an idea, I decided to put up a curtain instead.

So I rummaged around a little and found an old shower curtain we weren't using, and the an old shower rod and went to put it up... except the curtain wasn't long enough.

Easy enough to fix, I thought, I've got enough fabric lying around. So I put the baby down for his nap and hauled my find down to my sewing machine. I didn't really measure anything, just eyeballed it, but it was all straight line stitching so it wasn't difficult. This is what the bottom turned out like:

This is where the dollar comes in, I didn't have any rings for the shower curtain to hang from. So.... on my way to pick the kids up from school I stopped off at the Dollar Tree and bought a set. All in all it took me about two hours (if you count the going to the store into it all) and this is what I got:Now my daughter can get into her closet, and because of the white fabric the room has an airier feel to it. She's very excited (as am I), and it was so easy to do that I've started eying the boys closet too. Plus, I just put the old closet door downstairs. That when when we decide to move again we'll be able to put it right back up without it having excessive damage from years of kids trying to open and shut it.

Next, I think I'll find some fun iron on's to put on the white of the curtain, just for effect.


Buttery Herb Pull-Aparts

I made these for a Baby Shower today and they were yummy and REALLY easy. The recipe is stolen from a woman in my ward who stole it from someone else....who probably stole it from someone else.
1 pkg. Rhodes White Dinner Rolls (they don't have these here so I used Bridgeport)
1/4 c. butter, melted (or however much you want)
1 tsp. dried parsley flakes (I didn't measure this, I just sprinkled it until they looked pretty)
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
2 T. Parmesan cheese (I used real shredded parm--not the green can of yuck!)
1/4 c. grated mozzarella cheese
About 3-4 hours before baking thaw rolls on a pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Thaw rolls until soft, but still cold. I cheated on this part and just put the rolls still in the package into the fridge the night before to thaw. Cut rolls in half (or fourths if you do it in a mini muffin tin...which I highly recommend because everything is cuter when it's smaller.) Roll each piece into a ball and place 3 balls in each cup of a muffin tin (also sprayed with cooking spray.) Cover rolls loosely with sprayed plastic wrap and allow to rise until double in size (this took about an hour...but I do live in FL.) Drizzle butter over rolls and sprinkle with parsley, garlic, parmesan and mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
Next time I don't think I'll measure's that foolproof.


Clever Idea's

I found this one over at (which really just sends you to other places they found it at), but it's such a great idea I had to share. Baby Food Jar Pincushion.



Get Some Rockin' Moves

If you guys need to get some pretty amazing moves for a great party you're attending this weekend, check out the "worst music video ever" for some ideas. You'll laugh, I promise.

Help Me Out Will You?

I've gone and done something wildly hopeful... but the problem is so has everyone else that reads Better Homes and Gardens.

They've got this 'Win a room makeover' thing going on and I've got the room for it!

So if you could all just hop on over to this link here.

And give me a vote of 4 or 5 stars I would love you forever!

If you feel like being REALLY nice, you could even email your friends and tell them to vote for me as well. If you know me and know people who know me tell them to vote for me too.

Please. I have no money to redo this room, but I know what's going to happen is that when we move and try to sell the first thing any prospective buyer is going to say is... redo that room. And I sure would like to live in (and enjoy) it before I have to give it away.

Thank you.



Shredded Chicken Enchiladas

* uber kid friendly *

4 c. cooked shredded chicken

1/4 c. flour3

cubes chicken bouillon

2 c. shredded cheese

1 can chopped green chilies

1/4 c. butter

2.5 c. boiling water

8 oz. sour cream

10 tortilla shellschives (to taste)

*I also add 5 oz. finely minced frozen spinach -- we love the texture, and I like to squeeze in as many veggies as possible*

*Boil water, add bouillon and dissolve.

*Melt butter, add flour -- add into water & bouillon, stir until thickened. Remove from heat, put into bowl, add sour cream.*

Set aside two cups of sauce.

*Add chives, chicken, cheese *& spinach*

*Roll into tortillas.

*Top with sauce, sprinkle with cheese.

*Bake at 350 for 25-35 min.

We love it

*This reheats well, too. I use this on busy days -- I like to make it early in the day, and then pop in the oven when we get home from whatever events we have. Enjoy! *


Extra Cash

Since our blog had expanded far beyond MN and we now have several mommies that we don't know, we thought it would be fun start doing "get to know you" questions. So the first week of every month, instead of doing a tricks of the trade question, we (the admins) will ask a question that's more about you and not so much about motherhood. So we hope to hear from ALL our authors on this question and get to know all of you a little better! And of course we always love hearing from our readers as well!

So this week's question is:

The hot topic lately seems to be money (or lack thereof). So I want to know, if you had some extra cash today what FUN thing would you buy?? No, you can't say you'd put it in savings. This is extra extra cash that you have to spend on something fun. Let's say around $100. So what is it? Clothes, shoes, a massage, entertainment, jewelry, something for the house, something for the kids? Anything goes as long as it's a want and not a need!


Placemat Bag

So, my picture isn't very fabulous, but I love how the bag turned out. My daughter's favorite color is red, so she helped me pick out the placemat and ribbon and it has turned into a great church bag. Thanks for the instructions, Kara, it was really fun to make (although, because of my non-craftiness, it was a little more than a one hour project - but fun nonetheless!).

Placemat bags

Kara asked for pictures so here's my picture! I kind of got carried away. I already had some placemats saved up and then I saw the pink one with the green trim at Target and had to have it. So I figured I might as well make a bunch at once. And here they are. I'm not a huge fan of sewing on the ribbon like Kara did. It's way cute but I don't sew very straight! :) So I experimented with a few other things like the bows, buttons, and flowers!

So... did anyone else make one?


Here is my pasta recipe, it is our favorite way to "lasagna" - the recipe is one I've had since college, so it doesn't really give specific measurments, you can just make it up, make more or less as you go. Good luck!!

Brown some hamburger and season with salt and pepper or whatever you want. Garlic, basil? Add some tomato sauce (probably about an 8 oz can) In a big bowl mix cream cheese, cottage cheese, and sour cream - equal parts of all, it is usually small tubs of sour cream and cottage cheese and an 8 oz cream cheese. Oh, don't forget to be cooking some noodles at the same time.

Now, start to layer. Noodles, cream cheese mix, noodles, meat, olives, and grate a little cheddar or parmesan cheese on top. I promise your family and hubby will love this. We can eat almost a whole 9 x 13 pan in one night for dinner!!!