The Best Sugar Cookies EVER!


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I made pumpkin bread from a healthy recipe that only called for egg whites. I couldn't bare to throw away 4 egg yolks so I decided to find a recipe that would use them up. I did a quick search on Allrecipes.com and came up with these little gems.

These were hands down my favorite sugar cookie I have ever made. I should also mention I don't normally like sugar cookies. These were different however- they looked just like store bought and tasted so light. They sort of dissolve the moment they touch your tongue. Amazing! I am going to add them to the Christmas Cookie baking list because I liked them so much.

The sprinkles were not part of the recipe but I got the idea a while back from Cooking During Stolen Moments. I thought it really made the recipe.

If you have egg yolks that need to be used up for any reason this is exactly where they can be put to good use.

Monkey Bars


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I don't have a picture of these to put up with this post at the moment but so many people have asked me what Monkey Bars are that I have to share. I made these for the first time over the summer for my husband to take camping. I thought they were really good and light tasting. Perfect little snack or breakfast.

Monkey Bars
from Woman's Day September 2010

1 2/3 Cups Mashed Ripe Bananas (about 5 bananas)
3/4 Cup Packed Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Oil
1/4 Cup Milk
2 Large Eggs
2 Teaspoons Vanilla
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1 3/4 Cups Flour
1 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 15 x 10 baking pan with nonstick foil letting the foil extend about 2 inches above the pan at both ends.,

Whisk mashed banana, sugar, oil, milk, eggs, vanilla, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl until mixed thoroughly. Whisk in flour just until blended gently stir in 1/2 cup of the mini chocolate chips.

Spread batter in prepared pan. Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips on top. Bake 15 to 20 minutes until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.

Holding foil by ends, left from pan onto a cutting board. Carefully cut lengthwise in 4 strips and then cut each strip in 10; remove foil.

Eat and enjoy! I have frozen these and they seem to hold up well.

Menu Plan Monday



Things are really getting busy here the closer we get to Garrett and Seanna's wedding. Just two weeks away now! I have my final bridesmaid dress fitting this week and a haircut scheduled. Because of the two evening commitments I will be relying a lot on my crock pot this week. I hope everyone had a great weekend!


Monday: Mom and Dad's

Tuesday: 20 to 40 Clove Garlic Chicken, mashed potatoes, pumpkin dinner rolls, broccoli. (this is a meal where freezer cooking comes in so usefully! The potatoes and rolls are in the freezer and the chicken will be in the crock pot.)

Wednesday: Turkey BBQ Sandwiches, coleslaw, canned fruit-evening hot chocolate

Thursday: French Dip Sandwich, broccoli, Festive Cranberry-Pineapple Salad

Friday: Pot Roast, fresh bread, broccoli, Risotto, apple strudel for dessert

Saturday: Out to Eat

Sunday: Annual Dinner in a Pumpkin for Halloween!

(I just have to say that my husband, who rarely ever reads my blog, did so last week on the morning he was supposed to get a Monkey Bar for breakfast and said "I didn't get a Monkey Bar today!" I thought it was funny since he really is the only person who knows if he had what I wrote in the plan. I will try to do better this week in sticking to what I plan.)

Monday: Steel Cut Oats

Tuesday: Steel Cut Oats

Wednesday: Pancakes (thanks to planning ahead)

Thursday: Monkey Bar

Friday: Cinnamon Roll

Also on my list this week is to make Pumpkin Coffee Cake. Doesn't that sound super??

Have a great week everyone!

To see more great menu plans visit I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Pumpkin Baking Day 2010



Last year my friend Kelly and I had a pumpkin baking day. We decided to do it again this year but unfortunately our results were not as good. We started by purchasing pumpkins to cook and puree. That part went OK but the rest of the day was a comedy. We started by making a layered pumpkin bar. They took twice as long to bake as the directions said causing our dinner to get later and later. Once they came out we were so excited to try them but felt disappointed the moment they touched our lips.

Without being discouraged we moved onto the pumpkin brownies. Doesn't that just sound wonderful?? Well they were not. When we took them out of the oven and tried to eat them they were so rich with butter that there was no way to gag them down. We ended up throwing most of what we made away.

The night ended with Kelly dumping her plate of acceptable goodies on our front steps. I laughed so hard my husband made me come inside so I wouldn't wake the neighbors.

So I tell you this in hopes that you will share with me some of your favorite pumpkin recipes that would be worth trying. We plan to have a part two pumpkin day and hope that our efforts will turn out better.

Menu Plan Monday



I am having a hard time deciding what to put on this menu plan tonight because I am overwhelmed with the amount of recipes I have in front of me. Does anyone have a really great system for keeping recipes from magazines organized and sorted? I started with a binder then moved into a whole filing box system. My problem with the box is that they are not easily accessible so I don't really think about them. My problem with the binder is that I have pulled so many recipes now that I need multiple volumes to house all my recipes. Please please, please share if you have any ideas.

On another note I made pumpkin bagels this afternoon and they turned out so amazing. I am impressed with myself.


Monday: Dinner at Mom and Dad's

Tuesday: Baked Chicken Taquitos (except I am going to use shredded beef from the freezer), canned fruit, Mexican Rice Salad

Wednesday: Ginger and Turmeric Chicken Bites, leftover Mexican Rice Salad, canned fruit

Thursday: Ranchers Stew, cornbread, fruit

Friday: Leftover stew, fun fall dessert (I need to take this to a party we are attending)

Saturday: Out to Dinner

Sunday: Seafood Casserole, green beans, fruit


Monday: Pumpkin Bagel

Tuesday: Egg Sandwich

Wednesday: Monkey Bar

Thursday: Peanut Butter Baked Oatmeal

Friday: Leftover Peanut Butter Baked Oatmeal

Saturday: Pumpkin Pancakes and scrambled eggs

Sometime this week I plan to make pumpkin coffee cake. Doesn't that sound super yummy??

To see more menu plans visit I'm An Organizing Junkie.

Swiss Steak


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This has been quite the week so far. I have been working long days and we have had two evening commitments. I am ready for the weekend but there is still two days left to get through. I think I can, I think I can.....

Anyway that leads me to dinner. We had planned to have Chicken Fried Steak on Tuesday night but that didn't happen because we were out of the house at dinnertime. I thought I would make them tonight but that didn't happen either since I had to work so late. What I did instead was to run home during my short lunch and throw this into the crock pot. The recipe came from Fix It and Forget It. It was easy and actually really good. I think we will be having this again.

Swiss Steak

3-4 Tablespoons Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Pepper
1 1/2 Teaspoons Dry Mustard
1 1/2-2 Pounds Round Steak
1 Cup Sliced Onions
1 14 1/2 Ounce Can Tomatoes
1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce

Combine flour, salt, pepper, and dry mustard. Cut steak into serving pieces. Dredge in flour mixture. Brown on both sides in oil in saucepan. Place in slow cooker. Add onions. Combine tomatoes, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour into slow cooker. Cover. Cook on low 8-10 hours, or high 3-5 hours.

Hope you enjoy it!

Seanna's Portland Shower



This was the last shower for Seanna before the big wedding day. I helped put this one together and I was so proud that I have to share some of the shots from the day.

These cookies I made myself and I was so happy with how they turned out. I think they look like something you would buy. We put one at each persons place setting.

We also got cupcakes for everyone from Saint Cupcake in Portland. I was drawn to them because of the boxes that fit our theme-pink!

These little petits fours came from Beaverton Bakery. Aren't they sweet??

Overall the shower was tons of fun. We had so many sweets even above what I took pictures of. We also served a signature drink-sparking bride.

Menu Plan Monday



This is going to be a a little different week than normal. I only have to plan meals for three days! Can you believe it?!? How easy is that!? I love eating out and having other people cook for me!

We also get our new beef this week! My hubby is going to pick it up tomorrow since he has the day off from work. I have about 3 pieces of last years meat to use up so that is part of my plan for this week.

We went out to the pumpkin patch today with some friends and then spent the evening baking. The products of our labor were not very good (more to come on that later) but we had a blast. That is what matters right??

I hope everyone has a great week!


Monday: Out to Dinner

Tuesday: Chicken Fried Steak (I have never done this before but I am going to give it a shot), pumpkin dinner rolls, green beans

Wednesday: Sausage Pizza, salad, fruit

Thursday: Steak on the BBQ, broccoli, buttered noodles

Friday: Out

Saturday: Out

Sunday: I think out but if not we will be having Seafood Bake


Monday: Egg Sandwich

Tuesday: Monkey Bar

Wednesday: Muffin

Thursday: Oatmeal

Friday: Oatmeal

I also want to try making pumpkin bagels this week. I saw this recipe a couple weeks ago and have been wanting to try it ever since. I must make time this week.

See more menu plans at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Simple Pork and Apple Bake



I saw this simple recipe in Family Circe last May and knew I wanted to try it. I finally got around to it now that my parent's apple tree is exploding with apples. We have apples coming out of our ears! I am saving so many different recipes to try I could spend the whole weekend baking.

Now back to my dinner. The next time you have a busy day and need a warm and comforting meal pop this in the oven. It is a perfect combination of salty and sweet.

Simple Pork and Apple Bake

4 Small Apples
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Flour
1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1 6-Ounce Package Stuffing Mix
4 Boneless Pork Chops

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel, core and slice 4 small apples. Place in bowl and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lemon juice; toss with 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Prepare 1 6-ounce package stuffing mix as directed and spread in bottom of 9x13 pan. Place 4 boneless pork chops on top of stuffing an cover each with apple mixture. Cover pan with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour.

See more meals at Good Cheap Eats.

Chipotle Shredded Beef in the Slow Cooker


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When I made this dinner last week my husband said it was "money!" I took that to mean it was very good. I even liked it enough that I added it to my binder of family favorites.

I served this inside of homemade tortilla shells with grilled onions and peppers..mmmm! Just thinking about it makes my mouth water.

I also want to warn you that it is a little spicy. I don't like really spicy things and I loved this so you know it isn't bad. Someone like my Dad, however, who doesn't like any spice will think this is way to hot. If you want to tone down the spiciness cut back on the chilies.

Chipotle Shredded Beef
from All You April 2010 with my small changes

1 7oz Can of Chipotle Chiles in Adobo Sauce
1 15 oz Can Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies
1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
1 Onion Chopped
3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 2pound beef chuck pot Roast
1 Cayenne Pepper
Salt and Pepper

In a blender or food processor, puree chipolte chiles with adobo sauce until smooth. Spoon 2 1/2 Tablespoons into slow cooker; reserve remainder for another use (I didn't do this because I didn't want the whole can blended. I used two full peppers and some of the adobo sauce instead. I figured they would cook down so much in the slow cooker it wouldn't matter anyway).

Add tomatoes, lime juice, onion and garlic. Stir to combine. Season beef with salt and pepper and add to slow cooker. Place cayenne pepper on top of roast. I also spooned some of the bottom mixture up over the roast.

Cover and cook on high until beef is tender enough to shred easily with a fork, about 6 hours. Using two forks, shred meat; spoon into a serving bowl with sauce. Serve beef with warmed tortillas, and choice of toppings. We used grilled onions, peppers, and sour cream. Delicious and sure to be a family favorite!

Menu Plan Monday



There are so many great recipes online and in magazine I feel like I always have more things I want to make and try than I do days to try them in. Right now I have an ever growing stack of recipes I have pulled from various places waiting to be made. Does anyone else ever have this problem??

This week I am again trying to use stuff out of my freezer. I want to get it all cleared out before the new beef arrives. I also peeled, sliced, and froze 20 bags of apples yesterday with my mom (which was only a 1/4 of the apples we picked yesterday) and they need to have a home in the freezer. Out with the old and in with the new!


Monday: Mom and Dad's
Tuesday: Evening meeting so we will be going out to eat
Wednesday: Ropa Vieja, rice, broccoli, and jello
Thursday: Noodle Junk, Pumpkin Rolls, broccoli
Friday: Sopa Aguada de Fideo, Garlic Naan, dessert of some sort to be decided
Saturday: Freezer Meal TBD
Sunday: Roast, broccoli, mashed potatoes, rolls (never got to this last week)


Monday: Monkey Bar
Tuesday: Pumpkin Muffin
Wednesday: Instant Oatmeal
Thursday: Breakfast Sandwich
Friday: Smoothie
Saturday: Pumpkin Pancakes
Sunday: On your own

I also want to make some beef stock sometime during the week. We will see!

Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful week!!

To see more menu plans visit I'm An Organizing Junkie.