A little bit of this and a little bit of that. Daily Ramblings, recipes, photos and whatever else I like to share along the way.

Winner of the Wham-O Kid Car Wash Slip 'N Slide

Congratulations to the winner of the Wham -O Kid Car Wash Slip 'N Slide"
Lori!!



from Radnom.org
Here are your random numbers:

8
Timestamp: 2009-06-21 18:19:46 UTC


Happy Father's Day!

Wishing all the dad's and soon to be dad's a wonderful day.
Kick back and relax, you deserve it.


Here and there...

Due to a family issue, I will be posting a bit sporadic over the next few weeks.

NOTE: The drawing for my giveaway will still be posted on Sunday 6/21 and I will contact the winner with further information.

This is/was not something planned but then again life happens.

I will be around, stay safe and see you all soon.


Reminder of Giveaway...



You still have a few more days left to sign up for my giveaway of a Slip N Slide Car Wash.

Read what you need sign up and win your family some summer fun!


Mtn. Dew Horde Game Fuel - Review


I thought I would share my review of this soda (gaming fuel) and ask my son Nate (a WoW player) to add in his two cents.

Just a tiny bit of background for WoW. Dh has been playing this since it was first released. Nate joined in last year and now he is hooked. Guess the saying fits here... Like Father Like Son.
Me, I am not into video games very much.
I will play an occasional Wii game but that is as far as it goes.

So, what does the soda taste like?
I would have to say that it is quite interesting.
It is not very fizzy and I really did not taste a flavor until I swallowed the first drink.
The main flavor that I recognized was that of citrus (orange?tangerine?lemon?) with a hint of cherry, not bad.
I have to admit that the drink goes down super easy; then again I drank it at room temp.
This drink packs a punch, a punch due to the amount of caffeine in it.
I stay away from caffeine as much as I can so when I had this at 7 pm, I was still wide awake by midnight.
*whoa*
I guess I could see where it would help a gamer stay awake and on top of everything.


Hey, this is me Nate. My mom asked if I could write a little bit about this new soda seeing that I am a WarCraft player. First off, the soda is better semi-cold, because if it's too warm it's too sweet and if it's too cold then it has no flavor. When you first taste it, you experience both cherry and citrus flavor at the same time, and when you swallow it, it leaves behind a hint of cherry flavor. I'd give this soda a "B+" mainly because it's Horde. I will be back to review the Alliance soda tomorrow. (For the Alliance!)

There you go two different view points of the Horde Red Mtn. Dew

Our first cucumbers....


*grin*

These are our first two cucumbers of the year.
I wandered out to the plants to see if there might be anything on them and sure enough I had two waiting to be picked.
Dh and I enjoyed them with our lunch today.
I simply cut them up, tossed in some low fat sour cream and a dash of salt and pepper.
Yummy!

Baked Ham Tetrazzini - Recipe


This summer we are trying something new with the boys, they get to plan one meal a week and help make create it. This should prove to be quite interesting to say the least.
Spencer was up first and he wanted a dish with ham, the one he requested we did not have all the ingredients for which left us looking at other recipes to try.
We found this yummy recipe at the Taste of Home website and off we went whipping it up.
We did double the recipe, we substituted dried parsley for fresh and Spence wanted to add in some peas (which we did).
This meal was quite tasty, easy to create and even had oldest son going for seconds!
I can say that doubling the recipe made quite a bit because we had plenty of leftovers for lunches. :)


* Exported from MasterCook *

Baked Ham Tetrazzini

Recipe By: Taste of Home - Cooking for 2
Serving Size: 8
Preparation Time: 0:20
Categories: Main Meal

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
8 ounces spaghetti -- uncooked & broken into 2 inch pieces
1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup 98% FF -- undiluted
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons minced parsley
2 teaspoons onion -- finely chopped
4 teaspoons pimientos -- chopped
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
dash pepper
2 cups ham slices, extra lean -- cubed. fully cooked
2 cups peas

  • Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine the cheese, soup, milk, parsley, pimentos, onion, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper.
  • Drain spaghetti; add to soup mixture.
  • Spread half into a 1 1/2 quart baking dish coated with cooking spray.
  • Layer with ham and remaining spaghetti mixture.
  • Bake, uncovered at 375 for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly.

Source:
"Taste of Home.com"
Yield:
"8 "
Start to Finish Time:
"0:40"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving: 338 Calories; 13g Fat (34.9% calories from fat); 25g Protein; 29g Carbohydrate; 3g Dietary Fiber; 58mg Cholesterol; 1050mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 Grain(Starch); 2 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 1 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas:
  • Side Salad

Closet Adventure....


Yesterday was simply too much fun.

Ha! Right...

No, yesterday was spent cleaning out our bedroom closet.

I'm still not sure what possessed inspired me to tackle that project.

It has been on my nerves for a bit of time (say, about 6 yrs) and yesterday the lucky day.

I found so many items stuffed into this tiny little walk in closet it was pretty amazing.

What did I find you ask?

Pictures galore, an old jumbo size building block from the kiddos, various papers, pens, crayons, mismatched shoes, dust, copies of my resume, my college degree and clothes that have not been worn since the dawn of time.

I was able to sift through all the items, some have been properly tucked away (where they should have been in the first place), some went to charity, some were just tossed out (those with no hope) and lastly a pile of pictures that need to be placed into albums (good summer project).

After 5 hours and a massive sinus headache, I was rewarded with a lovely organized closet that we can now walk into. *smile*

I have to say it was totally worth it but I will not be waiting another 6 years to properly clean it out.

Freezer Jewel Pops - Popsicle Mold


With summer right around the corner how much fun are these jewel popsicle molds?

Simply slip on your finger and enjoy a cool refreshing treat, how easy is that?

Your children will have so much fun making and eating these fun summer treats.

You can purchase your freezer jewel pop molds at Amazon.com.

Get some fun, yummy summer bling you know you want too!

We have the shooting star mold (made by the same company), and are a huge hit with the boys when we make them.

Check out the other cool items at the Tovolo website .


Hershey's "Perfectly Chocolate" Chocolate Cake - Recipe


This recipe makes some of the best chocolate cupcakes you will ever have.
Spencer whipped them up yesterday (with a tiny bit of help) and they cured my chocolate craving.
These cupcakes were moist, the right amount of chocolate, not overly sweet and simply perfect.
Spencer does not like items that are really sweet but he absolutely went wild over these!

The recipe came from Hershey's Kitchen.com, which is packed with wonderful recipes that will have you baking up a storm.

I have to admit that we did not make our own frosting but opted to use Betty Crocker Triple Chocolate Fudge Chip.

*swoon*

Check out Hershey's Kitchens for more yummy, perfect, chocolate recipes to enjoy.

*You can make this in a variety of ways which are listed below in the notes section.*



* Exported from MasterCook *


Hershey's Perfectly Chocolate Chocolate Cake

Recipe By:Hershey's Kitchen
Serving Size: 30 cupcakes
Categories: Desserts

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 large egg
1 cup skim milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

  • Heat oven to 350. Grease and flour two 9 inch baking pans.
  • Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.
  • Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. cool completely. Frost

Source:
"www.hersheyskitchens.com"
Yield:
"30 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding frosting): 124 Calories; 4g Fat (30.3% calories from fat); 2g Protein; 21g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 14mg Cholesterol; 168mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 1 Fat; 1 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas:
  • Chocolate frosting (what else?!)
  • nice big cold glass of milk

NOTES:

Cupcakes: Line muffin cups ( 2 1/2 inches in diameter) with paper bake cups. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Fill cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22-25 minutes. Cool completely. Frost. About 30 cupcakes.

One-Pan Cake: Grease and flour 13x9x2 inch baking pan. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 35-40 minutes. Cool Completely. Frost.

Three layer Cake: Grease and flur three 8 inch round baking pans. Heat oven to 350. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake 30-35 minutes. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Frost.

Bundt Cake: grease and flour 12 cup Bundt pan. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 50-55 minutes. Cool 15 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely. Frost.


Breakfast Dental Floss - Fun Find


Who said you could not have fun flossing your teeth?

You can now enjoy some of your favorite breakfast flavors when you floss.

The dental floss comes in three great flavors, bacon, waffle and coffee.

You can enjoy the taste of your favorite foods any time of the day and not gain a pound.

Can't beat that!

Check out this fun floss at fredflare.com to purchase some!


What dessert are you? Quiz

You Are a Cupcake
Cute and fun, you never take life too seriously.
People are constantly surprised by how delightful you are.

I knew it!

Just a fun little quiz to pass the time.


Mexican Manicotti - Recipe


Quick, easy and very tasty.
This recipe is one that you can make the night before, then simply pop in the oven the next night and have a wonderful meal.
I omit the water and cook the shells until they are slightly soft when I am not going to place it in the refrigerator overnight.




* Exported from MasterCook *


Mexican Manicotti

Recipe By: Taste of Home's Quick Cooking
Serving Size: 8
Categories: Main Meal

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 pound lean ground beef
16 ounces low fat refried beans -- 1 can
2 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons oregano
8 ounces manicotti shells -- 1 pkg
2 1/2 cups water
16 ounces picante sauce
2 cups light sour cream
1 cup shredded Colby Jack cheese
1/4 cup green onions -- sliced

  • In a bowl, combine the uncooked beef, beans, chili powder and oregano.
  • Spoon into uncooked manicotti shells; arrange in a greased 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking dish.
  • Combine water and picante sauce; pour over shells. cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking.
  • Cover and bake at 350 for 1 hr.
  • Uncover; spoon sour cream over the top. Sprinkle with the cheese, onions and olives if desired.
  • Bake 5-10 minutes longer or until the cheese is melted.

Yield:
"8 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Serving Ideas:
  • Side salad


CankerMelts - Review



Canker sores hurt as you might know if you have ever experienced them.

My mom always used Alum powder to stop the pain but I can tell you from experience that it hurts like &8!2 when applied.

Spencer had a canker sore a few months ago that was quite red and sore. I had received a free sample of CankerMelts in the mail and decided to give them a try.
We placed one on his sore, Spence said it stung a little, it stuck to the sore, started to dissolve and the pain was going away.
He slept with the melt overnight and was thrilled to report that his canker sore no longer hurt!
I was really impressed and soon would find myself trying the melts.
Accidentally I cut my gum brushing my teeth a few weeks ago.
I located the CankerMelts at Walgreens and purchased them to see how they worked for me.
Popped on before I went to bed and by the next morning my canker sore was much better. I put another melt on and by the time it had dissolved the pain was totally gone.
These items really do work and work very well!
The melts are all natural, easy to use and will help anyone who is suffering from a canker sore.

You can receive a free sample by clicking here, check out the CankerMelt website for more information and where to purchase.


Wham-O Kid Car Wash Slip 'N Slide Giveaway



How much fun is this toy for the summer?

You now have the opportunity to win this Wham-O Kid Car Wash Slip 'N Slide in this wonderful giveaway!

What a fun way to keep cool and have fun on those hot summer days that are right around the corner.
Your child/children will want to go outside, just think of how imaginative and creative their play will be.
This toy is sure to become a fast favorite and one they will remember.


Check out our sponsor of this giveaway to see all of the other wonderful toys they offer.

Giveaway Details:


What:

One (1) lucky winner will receive the Wham-O Kid Car Wash Slip 'N Slide valued at $54.99.

Shipping is totally FREE to you!


Length of time:

The giveaway will start today Saturday June 6th and end June 20th at midnight.

Various ways to Enter:


1) Leave a comment on how much your child/children would enjoy this item.

2) Blog about our contest on your blog, the leave me a comment with your post url.

3) Become a follower on Twitter and leave me a comment to let me know your Twitter name.

4) Become a fan on Plurk and leave a comment here to let me know your Plurk name.

5) Subscribe to my RSS feed and leave a comment here to let me know you've joined.

Please note: Your email address MUST either be in your comment or available on your blogger profile or your entry will NOT count!!

Who can enter?

Anyone who has a valid US and Canadian mailing address.

** If winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new winner will be selected.**


GOOD LUCK!!

My eyes...

There I was simply minding my own business grilling some Bratwurst for dinner.
We have some trees on the side with our neighbor's yard so we really do not see them often.
Then it happened....
I looked up and noticed my elderly neighbor (he's like 80) walking around in the backyard towards his driveway.
OMG!
He was in his underwear and they were quite baggy on him.
My poor eyes, I think the image has been burned into my head forever.
*shudder*

Summer Giveaway Coming....

Check back tomorrow for a summer fun giveaway!

Guaranteed Cinnamon-Streusel Coffeecake - Recipe


Coffeecake is one of my food weaknesses.
I enjoy love trying new recipes for this wonderful mouthwatering breakfast treat.
I stumbled across this recipe on the King Arthur flour website late last year.
(If you have not checked out their recipes, you are in for one serious treat!)
I printed the recipe out, tucked it away in my want to try recipe folder.
Last weekend, I wanted something good and ready to try a new recipe; I knew exactly which one I was going to try.
The recipe is very easy to follow and the results are well, perfect.
Great flavor, moist and left you wanting more. :)


* Exported from MasterCook *


Guaranteed Cinnamon Streusel Coffeecake

Recipe By: King Arthur Flour
Serving Size : 24 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Breakfast

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 cup Splenda Brown Sugar Blend
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt -- only if using unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter -- melted
2 tablespoons water

3/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sour cream -- or plain yogurt
1 1/2 cups skim milk -- any is fine
3 3/4 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch pan or two 9 inch round cake pans.

Filling: Mix together the Splenda brown sugar, cinnamon and cocoa powder. Set aside.

Cake: In a large bowl, beat together the butter, salt, sugars, baking powder and vanilla until well combined and smooth.

  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream or yogurt and milk till well combined. You don't need to whisk out all the lumps.
  • Add the flour to the butter mixture alternately with the milk/sour cream mixture, beating gently to combine.
  • Pour/spread half the batter (a scant 3 cups) into the prepared pan(s), spreading all the ay to the edges. If you're using two 9 inch pans, spread 1 1/3 cups batter in each pan.
  • Sprinkle the filling evenly atop the batter.
  • Spread the remaining batter atop the filling. use a table knife to gently swirl the filling into the batter, as though you were making a marble cake. Don't combine filling and batter throughly; just swirl the filling through the batter.
  • Bake the cake until it's a dark golden brown around the edges; medium- golden with no light patches showing on top, and a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 55 - 60 minutes for the 9x13" pan, 50-55 minutes for the 9" round pans. When pressed gently in the middle, the cake should spring back.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for 20 minutes before cutting and serving. Serve cake right from the pan.

Source:
"kingarthurflour.com"
Yield:
"24 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving: 296 Calories; 10g Fat (30.5% calories from fat); 4g Protein; 47g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 51mg Cholesterol; 262mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 2 Fat; 1 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas: Fresh fruit

NOTES:
  • Ingredients are broken down into Filling, Streusel Topping and Cake in that order.
  • An EXCELLENT coffee cake, srsly one of the best I have ever made.



Snickers Transformers Bar - Review


Noticed this candy a few weeks ago while I was picking up a few items at our local Dollar Tree and I simply could not refuse to getting it.
I've had it for a bit of time but have resisted eating it (sad, I know) that was until this week and I was a bit stressed over various items.

stress + chocolate = bliss

It was the perfect time to enjoy this stashed candy bar.

The bar is released in advance of the Transformer 2 movie that will be opening in just a few short weeks.
Click here to read about it.
The candy bar is very much like a regular Snickers bar the two main differences you will notice are the yellow nougat and a slightly darker caramel otherwise it is the same as a regular Snickers bar.
Delicious!




Celebrate National Donut Day - June 5th.. - freebies



Tomorrow (June 5th) is National Donut Day.
*drool*


If you head on over to your local Krispy Kreme you will be able to receive a free donut.
Fine print: one donut per customer.


Dunkin' Donuts
is also having a give away of their own in observation of this yummy day.
Purchase any beverage and receive a free donut while supplies last.
Coffee and a donut makes a great combination at any time of the day.

Enjoy those donuts!

Great Teacher Gifts...

I wanted to do something totally different this year for Spencer's homeroom teacher.
So, off I went searching for items that were either handcrafted or from a small personal business.
These are two of the items we gave his teacher and I highly recommend these sellers.


How cute is this?


I found this keylette (aka key fob wristlet/ key chain wristlet) from SewMuchDetail found on Etsy.
This seller has a great selection of items, and the craftsmanship is wonderful.


Shipping was fast, cute packaging and the communication was excellent.


Next up was this Rosewood engraved pen from Rainbowengravers found on Ebay.
Spencer was determined that his teacher should have a personalized pen and I was off on a mission.



The only problem was that I *shuffles foot* sort of waited until the last minute to order this item but let me tell you the seller was excellent to work with. I paid a bit extra than the shipping was quoted (per my request) on the auction to make sure that the item shipped USPS Priority Mail. The pen was engraved just as requested, excellent communication, a nice sleeve for the pen and prompt shipping; what more could I ask for?

These two items were combined with a lovely little violet in a basket, something different and items she could use.

Check out these sellers for any gifts you may need or a nice pick me up gift for that special someone.

WOW - Mtn Dew has arrived


Spotted today at our local store - WOW Mtn Dew - Horde & Alliance.
Notice we had to buy one of each.
Nate is beyond thrilled (he and dh do play WOW), he has been waiting for this day since he read about this coming out on the market in March.

Have I tried it?
Yes.

Will I review?
Yes - with perhaps some help from a true WOW player - my son. :)

So, if you or someone you know plays WOW you might want to surprise them with a special pack of Mtn Dew.


oh, WOW = World of Warcraft
Publish Post

The homestretch....

We have entered that wonderful homestretch of the school year.
Today is the last full day, then there are two short 1/2 days and then we enter summer vacation!
Nate has annual day today so he is off signing yearbooks and enjoying food, games and sunshine.
I am busy getting the end of the year gifts together for Spencer's teachers and keeping everyone on the straight for the next two day.
Not like Nate's shoe laces could have waited just two more days before they broke, causing a huge commotion this morning trying to find a spare pair around the house.
I have hope that nothing else will decide to go kerflooey in the next 48 hours.
*crosses fingers just in case.*
I have to admit that this year just flew by at lightening speed, unlike last year where it felt like a ball and chain.
So with another year successful school year over, we are looking forward to the warm summer days, summer grilling, visiting new places and sleeping in.



We have already started hanging out at the pool!

Blackened Tilapia - Recipe


We are trying to get more fish into our eating plan here at the house.
I've had some Tilapia in the freezer and decided that I needed to find a good recipe to try out.
Headed over to Recipezzar.com, typed in what I was looking for (fish, spicy), sifted through various recipes until I discovered this recipe.
The recipe is super easy to follow and is excellent!
The whole family enjoyed the fish, it was flaky, flavorful and had just the right amount of spice without being too overboard.
Enjoy!


* Exported from MasterCook *

Tilapia Blackened

Recipe By:kosmo
Serving Size : 6
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Categories: Main Meal

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
6 Tilapia Fillet
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
1 tablespoon canola oil

milk * use enough to cover the fish

  • Place fillets in milk and soak for 30 -60 minutes in refrigerator.
  • Meanwhile combine the 1/2 cup flour with the creole seasoning (Emeril's Essence works well). Mix well.
  • When ready, remove fish one at a time and coat with flour mixture, shaking off loose excess before cooking.
  • Heat non stick pan on medium heat with 1 TBS of oil until rim of pan is hot to touch.
  • Cook fillet(s) until they flake easily, roughly about 3 minutes per side.
  • Sprinkle with desired salt once on plate and enjoy.

Source:
"Recipezaar.com"
Yield:
"6 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving: 68 Calories; 3g Fat (33.5% calories from fat); 1g Protein; 10g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 215mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas:
  • Salad
  • Rice
  • Veggies
NOTES:
  • Excellent
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