Living a Pinterest Life

Orange and Cranberry Salad — July 30, 2014

Orange and Cranberry Salad

Sometimes when I choose recipes I know that Scotty won’t be excited for them and I choose them anyway. Hey, I’m doing the meal planning, shopping, and cooking, I get to be a little selfish sometimes ūüôā I wasn’t too sure how he would feel about this salad so when he came home and asked what was for dinner I said, “Nothing (with a big smile on my face)” He just walked away shaking his head saying, “oh no.” Surprisingly after he ate this salad he said, “I don’t know why you think I don’t like salads. I really liked this one.” Score 1 for Wifey! No matter what the salad is I know I’m going to like it if it has feta on top. You can choose a cheese of your choice, or leave it off altogether. I also added chicken on top of ours. Happy Eating!

Orange and Cranberry Salad


Orange and Cranberry Salad



1 garlic clove, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup agave, honey or sugar

pepper to taste


4 cups lettuce mix

1 small can of mandarin oranges, drained

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted


To make the dressing, add ingredients to a shaker/mason jar and shake or add to a bowl and whisk. Place in the refrigerator until ready to dress.

To prepare the salad, put the lettuce in salad bowl and add mandarin oranges, and cranberries. Mix the dressing before drizzling a little over the salad and toss to combine. Add more dressing to your liking. Sprinkle toasted almond pieces and serve immediately.

BLT Pasta — July 29, 2014

BLT Pasta

I made this way back on Fourth of July, but with summer still very much here and the smell of BBQ still in the air, you still have time to make it. I’m not really sure how this is a weight watchers pasta with all the mayo, sour cream, and bacon, but if you eat it in small proportions it won’t ruin your bikini body. Happy Eating!

BLT Pasta

blt pasta

BLT Pasta


3 2/3 cup large macaroni shells pasta, cooked

4 cup tomatoes, diced

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

3 cups lettuce, thinly sliced

1 tsp sugar

2 tsp cider vinegar

¬Ĺ cup fat free mayonnaise

1/3 cup light sour cream

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

salt and pepper to taste


In a large bowl, mix pasta, bacon, tomatoes, and lettuce.

In a small bowl, mix sugar, vinegar, mayonnaise, sour cream mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.

Pour dressing over pasta mixture, stir to combine, and chill until ready to serve.

Serves 6

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas — July 28, 2014

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

I made this a few weeks back when we were craving some New Mexican green chiles. It was creamy, cheesy, and delicious. Happy Eating!

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas


Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

Recipe thanks to The Country Cook


10 flour tortillas (taco-size)

2 cups, cooked shredded chicken (about 2 large chicken breasts)

2 cups shredded Monterey Jack Cheese (mozzarella works fine too)

3 tbsp. butter

3 tbsp. flour

2 cups chicken broth

1 cup sour cream

1 (4 oz.) can diced green chiles


Preheat oven to 350F degrees.

Spray 9×13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

You can cook your chicken a couple of ways.

You can roast a couple of chicken breasts in the oven.

Just drizzle a bit of olive oil on them and season with salt and pepper and cook for about 35-45 minutes. Or you can boil your chicken until cooked. Or you could use a store bought rotisserie chicken.  It just depends on how much time you have to prepare this and what flavor you want from your chicken.  The roasted and rotisserie chicken are going to give you the most flavor.

Once your chicken is cooked, you’ll want to shred it using two forks.

Or if you have a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, put your chicken in the mixing bowl.

Turn mixer on and within a minute, your chicken will be perfectly shredded.

Handy little trick that is.

Add in 1 cup of shredded cheese.
Also, if you boiled your chicken, here is where you will want to add your seasoning.
Some salt & pepper or maybe a little Adobo seasoning.

Place chicken mixture in each of your 10 soft taco shells.

Roll them all up and place them in your baking dish. Just squeeze them all in there.

In a medium sauce pan, melt butter. Stir in flour and let cook and thicken for 1 minute (don’t let it burn).

Add chicken broth and whisk until smooth.

Stir in sour cream and chiles. Be sure not to let the mixture boil.

Take sauce off the heat and pour it over the enchiladas.
Top with remaining shredded cheese.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes.

If you’d like, you can turn the broiler on high and broil these for a minute or two until cheese is slighly browned and bubbly.

Spaghetti Bake — July 27, 2014

Spaghetti Bake

Most spaghetti bakes you see out there are covered in cheese and are really saucy (which sound like amazing things and believe me I think they are), but I was looking for a recipe without so much cheese. This recipe does have 2 cups of cheese, but I cut that in half to lighten it up a bit. I also chose this because I loved how many big veggies were in it. I only baked this for about 15 minutes since everything was cooked and it just needed to be warmed through. Happy Eating!

Spaghetti Bake


Spaghetti Bake

Recipe thanks to Recipe.com


12 ounces packaged dried spaghetti

1 pound lean ground beef

1 cup chopped onion (1 large)

1 cup chopped green sweet pepper (1 large)

1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained

1 4 ounce can (drained weight) sliced mushrooms, drained

1 2 1/4 ounce can sliced pitted ripe olives, drained

1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (8 ounces)

1 10 3/4 ounce can condensed cream of mushroom soup

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 3-quart rectangular baking dish; set aside. Cook spaghetti according to package directions; drain well. Return to pan.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet cook ground beef, onion, and sweet pepper until meat is brown and vegetables are tender, using a wooden spoon to break up meat as it cooks. Drain off fat. Stir tomatoes, mushrooms, olives, and oregano into meat mixture. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

Spread half of the cooked spaghetti in prepared baking dish. Top with half of the meat mixture and half of the cheddar cheese. Repeat layers.

In a medium bowl combine cream of mushroom soup and the water; spread over top layer in baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 30 minutes or until heated through.

Makes: 8 servings

Pinterest Projects Week 1 — July 23, 2014

Pinterest Projects Week 1

I have had Pinterest for 3 years now so you can imagine how many pins I have collected so far. Right now at this moment I have 5,047 pins. There are so many on there that I pinned three years ago thinking, “I want to do this someday.” Well that day is today! Last week I went through all my pins and made a list of things I was finally going to do. I chose something from 11 of my boards and here they are with my reviews.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Apple Smoothie


I chose this recipe from my Clean Eating board. I usually love green smoothies, but I wasn’t a fan of this one. It was very thick and tasted like spinach. I added ice and honey to make it a bit more bearable, but this isn’t something I would go back to.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Apple Smoothie

Recipe thanks to The Gracious Pantry

(Makes 2 cups)


1 cup chopped, sweet apple (I love pink lady apples for this)
1 cup raw spinach
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Blend and serve.


Breakfast Bagel Sandwich


I made this Breakfast Bagel Sandwich on Sunday Morning for Scotty and he has asked me for it every day since. I found the picture on Pinterest in my Breakfast board, but there wasn’t a recipe for it. I made this based off of what it looked like in the picture. I will write what I did on here.

Breakfast Bagel Sandwich


1 Bagel

1 Scrambled Egg

1 Fried Egg

1 Slice American Cheese

1 tbsp cream cheese

1 slice bacon, cooked



Toast the bagel and spread cream cheese on each half. While the bagel is toasting scramble and fry each egg. When the eggs are both done cooking melt cheese on them.  Layer the eggs and bacon on the bottom half of the bagel. Place the top half of the bagel on top of the eggs and bacon.


Black Bean and Guac Burritos


I found this recipe on my Yummy board. I pinned it one year ago and for some reason whenever I got my menu plan ready I never went for this. I guess maybe it was because it didn’t have any meat in it and I didn’t think Scotty would like it. Obviously, I could have easily put meat in it and my problem would have been fixed, but I never chose it. I was missing out this entire year. I made them on yesterday for dinner. It was the perfect size for two people and didn’t give us any leftovers. I didn’t get big enough tortillas and I stuffed them very full so they were falling apart, but it didn’t stop us from devouring them.

Black Bean and Guac Burritos

Recipe thanks to Naturally Ella



2 Avocados

1 clove garlic, minced

¬Ĺ red onion, minced

1 Serrano chile(seeds removed and minced)

1 lime

¬ľ teaspoon Salt

¬Ĺ cup Cilantro, minced

1 small Tomato, diced


2 large flour tortillas

¬Ĺ cup brown rice, cooked

¬Ĺ can black beans

bag chopped lettuce, onion, and tomatoes

‚Öď cup Moneteray Jack Cheese


Remove avocado from skin and place in a bowl and slightly mash. Add in the garlic, onion, chile, lime juice, salt, and cilantro. Stir until guac is well combined. Fold in diced tomatoes.

Spread guacamole in the center of the flour tortilla. Place half the rice, beans, cheese, and toppings on top of the guacamole. Roll into a burrito and tuck in the ends.

Using an indoor grill or a panini press, heat burrito until tortilla browns on each side.

Serve with remaining guacamole or salsa.

Healthy Sweet Potato Hash


I pinned this recipe 1 year ago onto my Sides board. I actually planned to make it a few months back, but it was a crazy week and it got pushed aside. It was good, but I lost some of the flavor by not putting garlic in it. I’m trying to stay away from cooking with garlic since it makes your breathe so stinky! I just put some salt and pepper on top of it when it was done cooking and it enhanced the flavor.

Healthy Sweet Potato Hash

Recipe thanks to Fit Sugar


1 large sweet potato, wash and dice into small cubes (1/4‚ÄĚ square)
2 tbsp canola or coconut oil
2 cups sweet onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 green pepper, coarsely chopped
1 whole fresh jalape√Īo pepper, minced (remove seeds for less heat)
2 cloves of roasted garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh group pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning


Bring large pot of water to a boil and add diced sweet potato. Boil for 5-8 minutes, until potato cubes are cooked through. Drain the water and set the sweet potato cubes aside to dry while you cook the pepper and onions.

Preheat a large cast iron skillet to medium heat. Drizzle 1 tbsp of oil onto the skillet and add the onion and peppers. Stir often and sauté until the onion becomes translucent.

Scrape the mixture onto a plate. Drizzle the skillet with oil again and add the potato cubes, onions, peppers, roasted garlic, salt, pepper, and seasoning, arranging them in a single layer. Continue cooking until the sweet potato, onion, and peppers have browned.

Portion onto a plate and serve.

Serves 4

Ornament Christmas Card


I realize that Christmas is 5 months away, but when time comes for the hustle and bustle of the holiday season it’s hard to get all the fun projects done that you want to. This card came from my Christmas Joy board. For the last two years I have made homemade Christmas cards for my friends and family. This year this card will be in the running for which one I choose. Making the cards by hand is extra work yes, but it’s so fun to do.

Ornament Christmas Card

Homemade card thanks to Split Coast Stampers


Phonetic Flip Chart

phonics book

I chose this project from my Mrs. Robinson’s Classroom board. Right now I have a total of 884 pins on this board and I just keep adding ideas daily. I can’t believe all the amazing things people come up with for teaching. Just like I like a Pinterest life at home, my classroom is completely Pinterest inspired. I get lesson ideas, decorating ideas, and even classroom management ideas. It’s going to take me a long time to get through all the ideas on this board, but I’m starting with this idea. I don’t have a job lined up yet for next school year so I have no idea what grade I’ll be teaching, but this would be perfect for little firsties.

Phonetic Flip Chart

Book Idea thanks to Kids Activities Blog

I made 5 separate books to put into my word work station. On the first section I put all the consonants, digraphs, and beginning blends. On the second section I put all the letters in the alphabet plus all vowel teams. On the third section I put all the consonants, digraphs, and ending blends. I imagine I will have students make any words they want, even nonsense words, and when they find a word that they think is real they are to write it down on a piece of paper. I can collect that paper for documentation to see if they are recognizing real words vs. nonsense.

The Giver by Lois Lowry


I got this pin from my Things That Make You Go “Huh” board. I loved reading The Hunger Games. I don’t know about you, but when I’m finished reading a series of books I feel abandoned. I get so caught up in the story and the characters that I feel like I know them and when I’m finished reading they just leave me! I chose the first book on the list to read and I love it! It’s a quick read, only about 180 pages, and I read it in three days. The website I got this pin from does a great job explaining how each book is similar to The Hunger Games and why you would like it. I took a description straight from their website for The Giver so this is in their words not mine:

(Take from Two Busy Brunettes) Jonas is a young boy living in a Utopian town. ¬†Everything is perfect where he lives. ¬†When children turn 12 ¬†they are assigned a job, so when Jonas turns 12 he is named the next ¬†‚ÄėGiver‚Äô . ¬†This job changes his life because it opens his eyes to things about his society and its past. ¬†Jonas faces difficult choices about his future and the future of his people.

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Pin thanks to Two Busy Brunettes


Large Studded Earrings

earrings¬†¬† I saw a quote one time that said something like, “I wish my Pinterest closet was my actual closet.” This is so true! I have a board called Dreaming I Could Afford These Outfits. A lot of the outfits on this board came from Polyvore. This is a fantastic website that puts together some of the most amazing outfits, but also the most outrageously overpriced. The outfit in this picture would have been $188 if I purchased everything in the picture. I decided to just choose the earrings. I clicked on the image and they were sold out so I went to Charming Charlie and picked out these turquoise ones. They will look great with almost any color.

Large Studded Earrings


New Running Shorts


I got this picture from my For the Future board. I would so love to have every color in the rainbow of Nike shorts someday. This week I just settled on getting one new pair. I chose the bright orange ones with a pink strip down the side. My circle is not quite as big and colorful as theirs, but maybe someday.

New Running Shorts

Cauliflower Chicken Alfredo Pasta —

Cauliflower Chicken Alfredo Pasta

I normally wouldn’t use pasta noodles to make a “clean” recipe, but I needed to use up some leftover noodles. At least the pasta sauce was way better for me than the jarred stuff. Happy Eating!

Cauliflower Chicken Alfredo Pasta


Cauliflower Chicken Alfredo Pasta

Recipe thanks to Pinch of Yum


8 large cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons butter

5-6 cups cauliflower florets

6-7 cups vegetable broth or water

1 teaspoon salt (more to taste)

¬Ĺ teaspoon pepper (more to taste)

¬Ĺ cup milk (more to taste)


Garlic: Saute the minced garlic with the butter in a large nonstick skillet over low heat. Cook for several minutes or until the garlic is soft and fragrant but not browned (browned or burnt garlic will taste bitter). Remove from heat and set aside.

Cauliflower: Bring the water or vegetable broth to a boil in a large pot. Add the cauliflower and cook, covered, for 7-10 minutes or until cauliflower is fork tender. Do not drain.

Puree: Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cauliflower pieces to the blender. Add 1 cup vegetable broth or cooking liquid, sauteed garlic/butter, salt, pepper, and milk. Blend or puree for several minutes until the sauce is very smooth, adding more broth or milk depending on how thick you want the sauce. You may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender. Serve hot! If the sauce starts to look dry, add a few drops of water, milk, or olive oil.

Pancake Bites — July 21, 2014

Pancake Bites

I am apart of a small group of people who start getting an anxious feeling as August approaches. This group of people consist of students, teachers and parents. My anxious feeling is a combination of excitement and stress. Summer is ending and a new school year is starting. This means Target’s dollar bin is full of awesome teaching supplies, My to-do list is getting longer and my lazy days are getting shorter. As you start to think about the upcoming school year and what you are going to serve your kids before they go to school check this recipe out.

I made this awhile back when I was still teaching. I popped them in the oven on a Sunday night and then had “pancakes” all week. It was so easy to either eat them on the way to school or pop them in the microwave when I got there and was getting ready for kids to arrive. I put blueberries in mine, but you could do any fruit you want, chocolate chips, or cinnamon. Happy Eating!

Pancake Bites



Pancake Bites

Recipe thanks to Pinterest


Instant pancake mix and ingredients needed on the box

Blueberries, chocolate chips, strawberries, cinnamon.


Mix together instant pancake mix, pour into muffin tins, ¬ĺ full and put what you want on top. Bake at 350 for about 12 minutes.

Homemade Taco Seasoning — July 18, 2014

Homemade Taco Seasoning


tacoseasoningScreen shot 2014-07-18 at 5.31.57 PM

The first ingredient in Old El Paso taco seasoning is Maltodextrin. The first ingredient!!

‚ÄúMaltodextrin is just as bad, sometimes worse, as having sugar.‚ÄĚ (Source: Fitness for Travel)

The hard to hear truth is that it’s hard to avoid Maltodextrin. A lot of food companies are putting it in their foods because they don’t have to label it as sugar, but it gives off a sweet taste and it’s cheaper to use. Look at your food labels before buying food and if it says maltodextrin choose a different item.

The thing that I find the craziest is that it says right on their label that there are preservatives in the item. I don’t understand why there needs to be all of these gross ingredients in the package when they could very easily make a product without it.

American’s love convenience.  You can’t walk outside without being able to turn your head and see a fast food restaurant. The lack of time American’s think they have is never going to change. However, you can find ways to carve time out of your day if you really want to make a change.

This taco seasoning took me not even 5 minutes to make. That is less time than it takes you to find a show on Netflix. It is less time than it takes you to scrounge through the fridge for the 5th time hoping to find something different to eat. You can make time to make this, and it lasts just as long as the packaged stuff. Give it a try, I promise you will like it!


White Chip Chocolate Cookies — July 16, 2014

White Chip Chocolate Cookies

I love being home during the summer. I get so much stuff done during the day, but sometimes this becomes a problem. After I check off my to-do list for the day, I usually go looking for other things to do. I don’t like to have stuff sitting in my refrigerator or pantry for a long time. When I buy something from the grocery store it’s to use that week. However, sometimes things get thrown in there and forgotten about.I have had these white chocolate chips in our cupboard for awhile so I decided to put them to use.

I found this recipe in which I had all the ingredients already. If you are looking to eating healthier these are not your go to recipe! First off, I couldn’t stop eating the batter and then once they were baked, there was no stopping me. I didn’t look at the recipe close enough to see that it made 60 cookies and about had a cow when I was done and the kitchen was covered in cookies! We gave away a bag to my dad and 2 brother in-laws and we still have cookies from last week! The cookies save well in the refrigerator and now that I’m writing this I might have to run in and get one (cookies for breakfast?) Happy Eating!

White Chip Chocolate Cookies


White Chip Chocolate Cookies

Recipe thanks to Very Best Baking


2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup NESTL√Ȭģ TOLL HOUSE¬ģ Baking Cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2/3 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) NESTL√Ȭģ TOLL HOUSE¬ģ Premier White Morsels


Preheat oven to 350¬į F.

Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Drop by well-rounded teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until centers are set. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake — July 15, 2014

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake

Cheesy Chicken and Rice BakeChe
–>I have been trying to do clean eating as much as I can. I have been doing it about 60% of my week. It takes some planning, but I have noticed a change in the way my stomach feels after I eat. It is starting to come more naturally for me when I make my food choices. Such as switching out white rice for brown and low fat cheese for full fat. When the food producers take out fat they have to get their flavor other places and this usually comes in the form of more sugar and more chemicals. It’s insane the amount of crap that is put into our food, but by making some changes here and there you can eventually figure out some better choices.

This was a quick meal for the family on the go. It’s healthy, but doesn’t taste healthy. Try making your own salsa instead of the chemical filled stuff in the jar at the store. Happy Eating!

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake


Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake

Recipe thanks to Tasty Kitchen


2 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

4 cups Cooked Brown Rice

¬ĺ cups¬†Frozen Corn

15 ounces, fluid Can Black Beans, Drained And Rinsed

1 cup Plain Greek Yogurt (or Sour Cream)

4 ounces, fluid Can Green Chilis

¬Ĺ cups¬†Salsa

1 cup Low-fat Cheddar Cheese, Plus More For Topping

2 Tablespoons Fresh Cilantro For Garnish


Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except for cilantro and mix thoroughly to combine. Make sure the yogurt and cheese are stirred in throughout the entire bowl. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Transfer to an oven-safe dish and top with extra cheese if you would like. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through. Garnish with chopped cilantro.


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