Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The light at the end of the tunnel...

I've pretty much been M. I. A. over here for about three weeks.
The reason: testing. 

As a teacher personally I feel we have way too much pressure on our students, parents, and teachers about test scores. I don't feel it truly shows how my students have learned and the ability they have by one test.
It is frustrating but at this point I need to work hard, have a good attitude, and support my kiddos.
{whom I know have worked so hard all year and learned}

 With that being said I am glad that tomorrow is the LAST day of testing.
Friday we will finish up any make-ups and pack up these bad boys and send them to Nashville.
Where they can keep em...

Any who,
looking forward to being able to give more attention to the blog and I have to much to post about:
-Drew's awesome 26th birthday weekend
-several recipes that are delicious
-and more weekly regular post

Hope everyone is having a great week!
It has truly rained and stormed for days here, hoping for sunshine!

Beauty Bag Goodie Swap

All About Lips

Excited to share my second swap goodies!
I was linked with the beautiful Kayla over at Boy, oh {mammas} boys!

This lady ins't only a great mamma, beautiful lady, but a make-up guru! 
Kayla sent me some wonderful finds. I love make-up but really I don't know any fancy tips or tricks.
She hooked me up with the Allure 2014 lip picks and I love them!

I can't believe I haven't tried the Baby Lips balm yet, because it is amazing!
Thank you so much Kayla, I'm LOVING my new lip colors!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

One Hour + $20 = New Laundry Room

It is nothing new that I hate laundry.
It is mostly the "putting up" part that I don't like but really nothing in this chore do I enjoy.
Cleaning the floors- no problem
Dusting and cleaning- kinda enjoy it cause it looks so nice afterwards
Outside tasks- so nice being out with Copper in the sun, no complaints 
Cooking-I love it
but that laundry, ughhh...

After trying to work on a laundry routine to help me not get so behind on it I noticed part of why I don't like (or a sorry excuse) is that the laundry "nook" was just so blah and not organized at all.

The one shelf in the area was a bit higher than I comfortably could reach and I didn't really have a place to store things. Drew and I took some measurements and decided to add two shelves to make everything easier to get to. 

Nothing special- no real organization and sorta a mess

The two shelves were $6 each and the "L" bracket to hang them less than a dollar each, the screws we already had in the garage. I got the baskets/bins at the local dollar store.

I will say for $20 and an hour later I'm very pleased with how it looks and love how easy it is to find anything. I wish we had done this earlier and although I doubt it will make eager to wash our drawers.
Next I thought about adding some silver letters that spell "wash" or something like that, in the meantime this will do!

{Tasty Tuesday} Healthy Parmesan Crusted Tilapia

Let me say, this picture does not do justice to how delicious this dinner is!
Also, very healthy and very simple.
This is becoming a meal we have several times a month, so yummy!!

I start with smaller tilapia filets and toss them in a mixture of one egg and one egg white whisked together. After both sides are coated I then put it in the "Parmesan mixture."
The parm mix is about one and a half cups of FRESH grated Parmesan, a generous amount of fresh ground pepper, a couple shakes of Italian seasoning, and as much crushed red pepper as you like.
I like to put it on a shallow plate and place my coated fish on top of it and gently cover it, both sides. Then I place it in a lightly "sprayed" glass dish. I like to pat down a small amount of parm on the top sides of the fish once they are in the glass dish and a few extra spices on the top. 
I bake at 425 for 25 minutes and it is golden brown and smells amazing too!

We love this on top of some whole grain rice with a steamed veggies. The red pepper on the fish gives it a nice spice so a simple veggie compliments it well. Paired with a simple salad and you got a restaurant quality meal!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Weekly Meal Mash Up and Catch Up

It has been such a great weekend!
Now I should note that the pollen is PILED up on everything and we can't breathe but the wonderful sunshine was worth it!

Friday the nice weather started and my class and I had an impromptu picnic lunch outside. It was wonderful! My sweet class has worked so hard and it was so nice to have lunch with them and listen to the silly things kids say. Hard to believe we have less than 6 weeks together. Hands down, best class I've ever had. 

This weekend we spent all Saturday working in the yard. Spreading mulch, expanding the flower bed a bit, mow, you name it. No complaints because the yard looking nice is a plus but I loved the chance at getting some sun on my shoulders and scary white legs. 

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Still got more flowers to plant but it's a start!

I'm 8 school days away from state testing. I'm feeling the pressure and working extra and trying to make sure we get everything covered that we want. So dinner is well planned this week to help make this week easier once I get home:

Sunday~ grilled hobo dinners
Monday~ lasagna (put together on Sunday, just pop in oven) make a quick salad
Tuesday~ baked tilapia, asparagus, rice
Wednesday~ turkey meat loaf, green beans, okra
Thursday~ working the first Easter service at church, so prob something quick like salad or a sandwich 
Friday~ ca-bobs on the grill after a Good Friday home!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Mid-Week Randoms...

Since my icky, sickly weekend I've missed out on some blogging so here is my catch-up:

Since battling the Norovirus this past week, I've rekindled the romance with this classic,
I'm convinced when sick, this classic is as good as medicine. I had forgotten how soothing the broth is on an upset tummy. I'm so grateful for this soup after the last few days!

Well any teacher anywhere is feeling the stress right about now. Testing stress.
I hate it. The kids hate it. It's stressful. I'm trying to keep the best attitude possible because I know we have worked SO hard this year and I try to think of it as a time for them to shine but the reality is that a lot rides on these test and that equals pressure on us both.

The weather seems to have improved lately and I'm loving it. The lakes are slowly rising back to normal and hopefully warming and the grass and trees look lush. This time of year just makes you feel good when outside! I know I can say this about any season, but spring might be my favorite. 

I'll be the first to admit, I'm a total pen snob. I love pens. I grade papers 24/7 and a good pen really makes my day. #lame
I'm usually addicted to my Sharpie pens but apparently have been living under a rock and recently got these. OMG pen heaven! They are the best and I've already put them on my list for my next School Box trip. 

Hope everyone is having a great week and looking forward to the weekend!

Norovirus is NO joke...

So that yucky virus that's been on the news..
well I got graced with its presence this past Saturday and I'm just now feeling better.

It literally hit all at once-
I had mowed the yard, went to Home Depot, ran with Copper then all of a sudden the most nauseous feeling I've ever felt like "struck" me all at once.
Without TMI details let's just say the whole night and next morning were horrible to the point of considering the hospital. 

Miserable, miserable, miserable!
With testing just around the corner (and knowing that I wasn't contagious anymore) I worked a half day yesterday and today in hopes of trying to prepare for the upcoming test. Finally, after a long nap this afternoon I feel human like again and can manage some solid food and not get worn out after half hour of doing nothing. 

This has to be one of the most sick I've ever been.  So glad this is hopefully behind me and NEVER comes back! Although, the only silver lining being I have enjoyed sweet Copper and Dr.Drew being so sweet and caring and very,very grateful that he hasn't gotten this icky virus too!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

{Tasty Tuesday} Chicken-n-Dressing Casserole

This is another Southern staple!
So yummy and heart (and soul) warming.
This recipe is my go-to for cooking for others.
I've made it for small group, family members, and on our snowboard trip in Jackson Hole.
Everyone who has ever had it, loves it!

All you will need is:
one pound of boneless, skinless chicken boiled and pulled a part
a cup (or more if you wish) of chopped up celery
Peperidge Farm Stuffing/Dressing for the top
Cream of Celery (low fat/sodium)
Cream of Chicken (low fat/sodium)
Can of chicken broth
parsley, salt, and pepper

Mix everything except the dressing/stuffing.
Cover with a good,generous layer of dressing/stuffing.
Pour into a lightly greased casserole dish.
Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
Absolutely wonderful with home-style veggies!!!