In the Kitchen with Ginger – Hula Bars

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Cooking with Momma! Which in this instance really just involved me handing her the things she needed, getting out and putting up things as she used them and just essentially doing what she told me to. Ha- I guess I wasn’t really cooking so much as gophering. Oh well, the end result was still some pretty delicious cream cheese bars – and you can never go wrong with cream cheese. Plus – I did get to pull them out of the oven! That has to count for something, right?

Ingredients…ingredients. I’m pretty sure she looked at me & said “what are you doing?” as I took this picture…

What You’ll Need

For the Crust
– 2 cups flour
– 1 cup sugar
– 1 cup butter
For the Filling
– 16 ounces cream cheese
– 4 tbsp. sugar
– 4 tbsp. milk
– 2 eggs
– 2 tsp. vanilla
– 16 ounce can of crushed pineapple
– 2 cups coconut
– 2 tbsp. melted butter
Making the delicious crust – it is good enough to eat on it’s own!

Mix…& mix…& mix…

Adding the yummy cream cheese mixture. Yes please!

What You’ll Do

– Preheat the oven to 350. Combine 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of butter in mixing bowl until well combined. Press the mixture flat into the bottom of a 9×13 pan and cook for 15-18 minutes.
– Using a mixer, combine the 16 ounces of cream cheese, 4 tbsp. of sugar, 4 tbsp. of milk, 2 eggs, vanilla and the can of crushed pineapple. Pour this mixture on top of your freshly baked crust.
– Mix together the 2 cups of coconut and the 2 tbsp. of butter. Sprinkle this liberally on top of the cream cheese mixture. Put the pan back into the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes.
– Allow the bars to cool about 20 minutes before slicing. Enjoy!

Absolutely delicious!

In Which There are More Pictures than Before…

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Rejoice – my faithful blog readers! All 3 of you. Ha-ha! I must have been much less encumbered by life in general this past week because I just have pictures galore this week. Between exploring, cooking, working and playing this week, I managed to snap photos all over the place. I can’t believe that January is almost over; didn’t this month just start? I fully buy into the idea that time moves faster every year you are alive…I feel like these weekly recap posts come so fast! Oh well, no time to dwell on the anomalies of time and space. Let’s move on to pictures!

What does the fox say? Shops & Restaurants!

Monday was MLK Day and while I did have to work in the morning, I got off at 1:30 and Monday was an absolutely gorgeous day for January – in the mid 40’s and sunny! My Mom told me to get home because we were going on an adventure and once I’d had some lunch, we climbed in the car and drove about thirty minutes through the curves and hills of the mountains to Middleburg! Middleburg is this great little small town (I almost want to call it a village, I swear) with so much charm! It has great shops; filled with neat and unique things as well as interesting and different places to eat.

We perused several shops – The Fun Shop, The White Elephant (where I found my awesome Union Jack box!) Lou Lou’s and while looking in the Home Farm, we even got a little tea to carry along on our walking. We decided to end the evening with supper at the Red Horse Tavern and let me tell you – they have some of the best White Chicken Chili that I think I have ever eaten. Not to mention the homemade chips that they turn into nachos covered with cheese and homemade salsa – those are absolutely divine. All in all, a delightful adventure to have been on!

My awesome Union Jack box – already filled with goodies!

Cooking up a storm on Tuesday – apple pork loin anyone?

Proof that most anywhere you live, the weather is always going to be weird: Wednesday’s intense snow that melted within minutes. We woke up to snow falling; not just any old snow but huge fat flakes of snow falling rapidly, and so I was left to wonder what the roads would be like when I went to work on Wednesday night. Apparently I had no need to worry because at 1:30 I took a short nap to try and shake a headache I’d had all day…and when I woke up at 2, everything was gone! By the time I left for work at 5, the sun was out…the sky was blue…and you’d have never known that at 11 that morning when I walked the dog, we were both being pelted with snow that was so thick it seemed like it was falling in buckets! And just when you think the weather can’t get any weirder, when my friend Josh and I got off work at 9:30 and walked out the door, the fog was so thick we could barely see 5 feet in front of us – it was a fog that you could literally feel all around you. I drove home very slowly…mostly because I could only see the road about a few feet out… Weather is weird.

What are these things on me & how do I get them off?

Check out the size of the snowflake stuck in my hair?!?

Holy snowflake!

Snow isn’t so easy to get on camera when it’s falling…so I was tickled that this turned out so well.

Just starting to stick to the trees around noon….

And then it was 5 PM & the world looked vastly different.

The rest of the week seems to have passed without much standing out in my mind… I ate chocolates at work on Wednesday night with Joshua – pumpkin truffles are cute but not so tasty. I was off on Thursday, so I applied for jobs (I’m telling y’all…the number applied for at this point is at least 200+…I can’t dwell on that too much or there will be a spiral) and whipped up some supper in the crock pot – some supper that was a resounding hit! I’ll be honest, on Friday morning I was a bum and binge watched three episodes of House of Cards before heading to work. Not my proudest moment, but I think we all have those days…right? I met my parents at the Alamo after work for dinner and a movie (American Sniper) and then drove home in the weird weather. See – weird weather is a theme this past week. It was supposed to snow but it rained and rained and snowed only a wee bit and then sleeted up a storm, so that on Saturday morning, there were little piles of icy crunch everywhere.

Pumpkin truffle – cute but not that appetizing.

What frozen fog looks like on the deck….

Watson watching the world pass him by from my bed…

And also being thoroughly rotten, napping with his dragon Figment.

So intense. So good.

Saturday morning brought with it some more weird weather – would it rain? Would it snow? Maybe a little bit of both? We made a quick journey to the land of Wal-Mart before my Mom and I headed to a baby shower at our church and wouldn’t you know, by about 2 in the afternoon the sun had come out again and it was looking like a glorious afternoon! I do love little people…and so I thoroughly enjoyed celebrating the arrival of a new infant; there were clothes and cake and games…and of course, a few little tykes to cuddle in the process. And you may ask….why won’t she just type b-a-b-y?? Well, one of the games we played involved everyone starting the shower with a clothespin on their shirt and if you said the word baby, you lost your clothespin. At the end, the winner was the person with the most clothespin – which was yours truly. I love babies but I can hush talking about them when the game is on the line!

I don’t know why he sits like this…he’s so odd sometimes!

I also have no clue why the ice made polka dots…but it certainly looked cool!

Amelia was pretty tickled with herself on Saturday afternoon.

The shower entertainment – courtesy of Hadley & Amelia & their silly antics!

What’s that word again?

Watson got a bath on Saturday night & it was obviously extremely tiring…he could not take it.

Sunday was such a bummy day…after we went to church, we combed through all the boxes downstairs in storage to see what of Lindsey’s needed to be pulled out and stacked to the side for her impending move and in the process we found some of my things that I haven’t seen for awhile – movies I forgot I had…and things that I can’t wait to unpack again once I have my own home again. I know, that doesn’t sound very bummy and I guess it really wasn’t. Oh well, it actually seemed kind of relaxing, ha! After supper, we redecorated my room with my bedding which kind of tickled me, I’m not sure why though. We watched Downton Abbey and went to sleep bracing for this major snowstorm…but so far, nothing too intense has happened. As I’ve said more than once this post – weather is weird.

Snuggles with Mia on Sunday morning.

There were hoot owls on her sweater – could it be more precious?

Owl pillow – I have not seen you in so long!

Last but not least – I posted a picture of me with my owl pillow and two people, within ten minutes of one another (two people who don’t even know each other…) told me that I looked just like Lindsey in the picture. Lindsey and I agreed that we didn’t really see it…but oh well. A picture for your comparison below…

We really look so alike?

Italian Cream Cheese Chicken

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Oh my gosh – another recipe! Twice in one week; I’ve been cooking up a storm! I have to say, while both of the recipes that I’ve cooked this week were delicious…this one was probably the favorite. I say that based on the response I got when both my parents ate it. This is another recipe from over at Come Fly with UsLindsey has been trying out the recipes and then passing them along to us so we can have our take on it. We haven’t been disappointed yet! So, read on for a delicious and super easy dinner that is guaranteed to please!

All the necessary items for another awesome crock pot meal!

What You’ll Need

– 1 package thin sliced chicken breasts; cut in small pieces
– 1 Italian seasoning packet
– 6 tbsp. butter
– 1 can Cream of Chicken soup
– 1/2 cup Chicken broth
– 1/2 onion, cut
– 1/4 tbsp. garlic powder
– 1 8 ounce bar of cream cheese
– 1 box of pasta; your choice

From start to finish, the sauce only took about ten minutes!

What to Do

– Cut chicken breasts into small pieces; put in the crock pot with 4 tbsp. of butter and top with the Italian seasoning packet. Cook on low for 4 hours.
– In a sauce pan, saute onion and garlic until translucent. Add 1/2 cup of chicken broth, cream cheese cut into cubes and the can of cream of chicken soup. Combine over medium heat until well mixed and smooth. Add to the crock pot with your chicken and cook for an additional hour.
– Cook pasta. Toss with Italian cream cheese sauce and chicken. 
– Enjoy!

So easy & it got rave reviews – especially from my Mom!

So there you have it – short, sweet and all you need to cook an absolutely delicious meal that everyone is sure to enjoy!

Apple Pork Loin

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Cooking…cooking up a storm. I figure I have to make use of all the time that I have on my hands while I wait for someone to give me a job. I mean…honestly, I feel about ready to scream at the lack of job activity but I’m trying to channel that energy into something more useful…like cooking supper. Ha-ha! Lindsey was so kind to share this recipe with me and she got it from a friend named Janelle – you can check out her blog, Come Fly with Us just any old time and enjoy what she has going on over there.

Ingredients & a crock pot…I do enjoy using the crock pot!

What You Need

– 1 pork loin
– 1 onion; chopped
– 1 large sweet potato; chopped
– 2 apples; chopped
– 1 cup apple juice
– 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
– 1/2 tsp. basil
– 1/2 tsp. rosemary
– 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
– salt & pepper to taste

Ready to toss it all in the crock pot & let it steep & stew….

One last look before I head off to work….

What to Do

– Cut up onion, sweet potato and apples, set aside. 
– Mix together your spices.
– Put half of the onion, sweet potato and apple mixture into the crock pot. Lay the pork loin on top and pour one cup of apple juice over the top of the loin. 
– Sprinkle seasonings over the top of the pork loin and top with the remaining onion, sweet potato and apple mixture.
– Cook for 6-8 hours on low.
– Enjoy!

A peek into the crock pot at the finished product!

And a delicious supper was had by all…

I thoroughly enjoyed this and will definitely add it to the rotation of yummy things to cook! Stay tuned because I’ve got something else planned for this week that promises to be pretty yummy as well. Hope everyone is having a wonderful week and enjoying some delicious meals – I know I am!

And in case you were wondering…this is about how I feel when it comes to the whole job search thing. I couldn’t have said it better myself…

The struggle is real.

The Briefest Recap Ever

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I have like…six pictures from this past week. Six! Okay, it’s actually seven and I don’t know what I was up to this past week but taking pictures obviously wasn’t one of them. I don’t think I was very busy but I guess I was reading books or something…and no one wants a picture of that, am I right? So – here is the short and sweet of it all.

It snowed again on Tuesday…but only a wee bit…a light dusting.

What is your Cumberbatch name? Ha-ha!

Apparently I spent some time finding out what my Benedict Cumberbatch name is…Buzzfeed is a glorious waste of time. I made sure my parents also found out what their names were as well. Delightful fun while you’re sitting at the Mexican restaurant on a Wednesday night!

In mid sweater removal; I couldn’t resist because he just looked too funny.

Cake in a mug – I wasn’t expecting it to be good…but it was!

I do love icy leaf pictures…

Sunday morning sleepies – this is one seriously rotten little pup!
A Sunday night dinner date with these two cuties.

This is probably the saddest little blog post I’ve ever done. I don’t even seem to remember too much of what happened last week – it all seems like a blur. The positive side? I’ve already got two pictures for this week and it’s only Tuesday…so that bodes well for the next week, right?