Monday, October 31, 2011

meal plan monday: happy halloween!

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what better way to start your halloween day out with than pancakes! i actually made these for my kids on saturday because we were celebrating all the halloween festivities over the weekend. these pancakes were a HIT. i've never seen my kids eat so many at once! i'm not a huge fan of pumpkin but they were sooooo good and moist it was hard to resist.

pumpkin pancakes

- 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 + 1/8 teaspoons all spice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup milk**
- 6 tablespoons pumpkin puree
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 egg**

1. stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, all spice, salt, and cloves in a medium bowl.
2. whisk together milk, pumpkin, butter, and egg in a separate bowl. fold this mixture into the dry ingredients.
3. melt butter in a skillet over medium heat.
4. pour 1/4 cup batter for each pancake and cook approx 3 minutes per side
5. serve with butter maple syrup!

*adapted from martha stewart*

**i used regular almond milk for the milk which is WAY less in calories than cow milk. also, i did not use an egg. i used ground/milled flax seed. flax seed is a great egg replacement and it's really good for you. just use 1 tablespoon flax and 3 tablespoons water. i also didn't use all the butter, i ended up using maybe 1 tablespoon if that. i have a really good nonstick pan so it's pretty pointless to throw all that butter on it.**

(to make the shaped pancakes i put the batter in a restaurant style squeeze bottle)

i also have another delicious pancake recipe for yall.. but it's not as healthy as the pumpkin pancakes. cinnamon reminds me of fall and it was quite nippy this morning, so i whipped some cinnamon roll pancakes up for them while me and daddy enjoyed some breakfast burritos. (i may or may not have eaten multiple bites off the kids plates and been sad that i choose to eat a delicious breakfast burrito over these pancakes, seriously, they are THAT good.) (i also recommend eating these pancakes while watching Matilda, my kids think it made them that much better! lol)

i do have a few suggestions for the recipe. you do not, i repeat, DO NOT need the cream cheese glaze unless you 1. want diabetes, 2. end up in a sugar coma, or 3. all of the above. =). the cream cheese glaze is just down right naughty of you if you decide to do it!

the recipe yields 4 pancakes, it actually made 4 large pancakes and 2 medium pancakes.

i had a lot of cinnamon swirl filling left over. i'm willing to bet that you could cut the butter and sugar in half and only use 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon. i haven't tested this theory yet, so don't hold me to it. the next time i make these i'll def test it out.

also, even if you wait til your pancakes set a little before adding the swirl, the swirl is still going to run everywhere because it has butter in it. the butter melts when it hits the hot pancake...duh! lol it's okay if it runs all over your pan, it'll eventually get stuck somewhere on the pancake.

i served these with MAYBE a tablespoon of maple syrup for 1 large and 1 medium pancake and that was plenty. i even had a few bites without maple syrup that tasted heavenly. trust me folks, you want to make these asap!

happy halloween!!

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please hit play on the youtube video while reading this post please. =D

**click photos to enlarge**

IT'S POPEYE AND OLIVE OYL!! see, i told ya it was going to be pure awesomeness didn't i?! =D

i modeled their costumes off of that picture of popeye and olive oyl, i made everything from scratch except for A's red shirt. they were a hit. they won the costume contest at our apt's fall festival on saturday! we went to boo at the zoo and lots of people were taking pics of them. they were the only popeye and olive oyl that i seen all weekend! and yes, Man did walk around with his "pipe" in his mouth the entire time and no, we didn't put a sucker on the end or bribe him to do it. after seeing the cartoons, he wanted to do it on his own. they rocked their costumes with every ounce of awesome they had in their sweet lil bodies!

i'm so excited for next halloween, i have a lot of crazy ideas swimming around my head already!



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Friday, October 28, 2011

spirit day!

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all this week has been "spirit" week at A's preschool. let me be perfectly clear here. the sole reason i had children was to participate in fun events and dress them up to my hearts desire, also, they give me excuse to craft things at the last minute. =) jk.. kinda! haha today was wear your favorite team shirt or colors. we're from the south and highschool/college football is HUGE. there are 2 large college teams in our state *one of which is ranked number 5!* but their shirts are expensive! and plus.. we're not like everybody else, we root for a completely different team.

i guess because of the 2 big colleges the stores don't think about selling other team shirts. and even if they did, i wasn't paying $24 for a stupid tshirt! so last night i went into her closet and got out a white tshirt and rummaged through my craft stuff for some paint. don't judge me... but the paint i used is from when i was a senior in high school... 6 years ago. lol. i didn't have any green so i mixed blue and yellow til i got a good color. i traced the U off of the university of miami's website onto printer paper (because i was too lazy to walk to the other room to actually print it lol). i outlined it in black marker so i could see it through the shirt and then i traced it onto the shirt with a pencil. i painted it with regular cheap paintbrushes and the end result looked pretty dang good if i do say so myself! =D

but was i done? no, of course not. i had to make some bows.. cause that's what any mad woman does at 11:30 at night when they have to get up at 5 am the next morning! lol
if yall are interested i can make a video on how i make the bows, just let me know!

i took her spider web design braids out this morning and put her hair in 2 piggy puffy buns and put in the clippies. she was quite impressed with how she looked. she's a daddy's girl all the way and it made her proud to be wearing "daddy's team" on her shirt. 

please ignore that 1 bun.. her daddy had knocked it with his backpack and had it lookin all funny, i didn't notice til we had gotten in the car. luckily i had time to fix it before i sent her off to school!

"THE U!!"

a review: my true nature

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last month i had heard from untrained hair mom that my true nature was giving out a sample of their new eczema cream. i jumped on that opportunity because my son has a reoccurring patch on his back and he has extremely dry legs. 

i contacted her and she quickly responded and sent me the cream, but was i was surprised to find is she also sent me a sample of their shampoo/body wash and their bubble bath! the packaging was super cute little bottles wrapped in hot pink tissue paper. 

a little goes a long way on my kids, i put maybe a dime sized amount on their sponge and it gets their body clean without drying their skin out. also, the smell is sweet like a baby but not too over powering. i'll be honest, we haven't used the bubble bath as bubble bath. my kids don't take baths, they take showers so i put the bubble bath in their foaming hand soap dispenser. either way, it's working! A usually has a lot of peeling around her fingernails but since she's been washing her hands with the bubble bath, i noticed much less of that.

on to the cream, it isn't out yet for purchase but i definitely recommend that you keep an eye out for it! i usually lube their bodies up with gobs and gobs of lotion and coconut oil but it only took a little bit of this. it worked excellent for the dry patch Man's back but i did have to layer it with coconut oil on his legs. his legs felt so smooth rather than hard and scaly like they normally do.

it was great testing these products out, Kelly was great with communication and offering helpful tips. check them out for some great natural and organic bath and body products!

**i was sent these products for review purposes only. all the opinions stated are mine and i was not paid or endorsed to post this review.**

Sunday, October 23, 2011

halloween spider web design braids

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i had one last style in mind for A before we style it this weekend for her halloween costume. i attempted googling my idea of the spider web design but i couldn't find any. i ended up just drawing out the design on paper so i would have some idea of how i wanted to part her hair. when i was done her dad had the great idea of adding the white crochet thread to make it look more like a web. i love the outcome of it! we added a few spiders in there for a more realistic effect. =)

this is probably the hardest style ever to photograph though. a lot of the strings didn't show up in the pictures even with the flash off, but still.. you get the idea. lol i definitely think this style looks much cooler in person!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

twist for 2

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tonight we were invited to an invite only dinner for the opening of a new restaurant (which was totally delicious by the way =)). i wanted something quick, easy, and cute all at the same time for Miss A since i know i'll be giving her some more halloween inspired braids tomorrow. out came the sock bun! for some variation i decided to flat twist a "bang" section and pin it back. she looked like such a little lady tonight.

i also did some twist on myself. after talking to my bestie Carol from boys and girls natural curls she found me a style she thought would look super cute. i did this style, but i added in a small cornrow on each side just because. i loved how it turned out! the flat twist in the back looked kinda weird but i was running out of time and my arms were tired. lol. tomorrow i'll probably either retwist it to make it look better or i'll separate it into 2 twist.

see that tiny lil cornrow in between the 2 twist in the front on each side? i'm pretty proud of those. i don't normally braid or twist my own hair so this is a big deal for me. these flat twist look MUCH better than the last ones i did on myself. 

i kept getting compliments on my hair and my awesome earrings. they are made by my awesome friend Darby and i love them very much. =D

one thing i've noticed when i was uploading pics is wow.. i'm starting to look more and more like my mom everyday. lol.

Friday, October 21, 2011

meal plan monday: jamaican flair!

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ok... i know it's friday, but tasty food is better late than never right? lol today i have 2 really delicious recipes for yall to enjoy. warning, if you don't like mildly spicy food, this isn't for you. my daughter did gobble it down so it couldn't have been too spicy.

i have for you jamaican beef patties served with jamaican cabbage and carrots.

for the beef patties you will need:
1 lb ground beef
2 tablespoons veggie oil
6 scallions, chopped
1 med onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper (or whatever pepper you prefer)
5 cloves of garlic chopped
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika 
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon curry powder (i used yellow, red is much hotter)
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons thyme leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon blk pepper
1 teaspoon sugar

1. in a pot on med heat up the veggie oil and cook the scallions, onions, garlic and peppers until softened. add in the rest of the seasonings with the beef and cook until meat is no longer pink. add in water until the meat is about 3/4 of the way covered and simmer until it forms a sauce. (i added a little cornstarch to help thicken mine)

for the dough you'll need:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder
dash of salt
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup oil/shortening
1/3 cup of water

1. preheat oven to 400. combine flour, curry and salt in a large bowl. cut in the butter until it resembles coarse crumbles then mix in the oil then the water until it forms into a ball. *warning, this will stain your hands and your counters if they are cheap apt counters like mine =)* roll out dough until its thin, but not thin enough to tear and cut into a circle. 

*i made my beef patties in different sizes because i made smaller ones for the kids but it made 17 in all for me.*

2. spoon the meat mixture into your rolled out dough circles and fold over to make a pocket. moisten the edges and crimp with a fork. bake for 30 minutes or until browned.

for the cabbage and carrots you need:
4 slices bacon chopped
1 cup of carrots sliced
1 cup of onion sliced
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 small head of cabbage sliced thinly
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon blk pepper
3/4 cup veggie stock

1. in a large pot over med heat cook the bacon until crisp. remove bacon and set aside for later. add the onions and the carrots to the pot with the bacon drippings and cook for about 2 minutes. stir in the curry powder and add the cabbage. toss well for about 5 minutes. season with salt and pepper, add in the veggie stock and cover. reduce heat to low and steam for 10 to 15 minutes or until your cabbage is tender and slightly crunchy. crumble bacon and add on top when done.

i highly recommend serving this meal with a tasty jamaican beer ;)

my entire family loved this meal.. of course, the kids didn't get to enjoy our tasty beers. LOL

Thursday, October 20, 2011

inspired style: flat twist pin up

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i just want to start this post out by saying this is stepping out of my comfort zone by about a million. i have very thin hair and i try my best to hide it, but styles like this show all it's imperfections and makes me feel naked and vulnerable. but, with that said, sometimes it's good to step outside of your comfort zones. 

i was browsing youtube yesterday and i found a really nice style by i LOVE LOVE LOVE it. i was skeptic on trying it because 1. my hair is thin, 2. my hair is softish, and 3. i've never done flat twist in my own hair. i tackled it anyway just because it's too beautiful to pass up. =)

let me just say... my arms were killing me! i think with more practice i can get the twist to look nicer and tighter. i didn't use any product at all (which i probably should have for extra hold).

i flat twisted the bangs down and pinned them too the side because they were hanging way past my eyes and it didn't look cute at all. maybe if i did the twist on wet hair and let them shrink up that would work. also, next time i'll make the twist MUCH smaller. i only had an hour to complete this whole style so small twist wouldn't have worked. maybe smaller twist will help me not look so scalpy too.. who knows. so yea.... there i am, my scalp showing laying it on the line for yall lol. the message is, don't be afraid to try something new, even if you risk looking like a moron. =)

here's the original in case you might want to try it for yourself!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

halloween braids style

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we decided to do something fun for A's hair since halloween is coming soon. i didn't want to do a spider since it was already done by keyative styles so i figured i'd try something else. i had a few ideas in my head but eventually ended up on a pumpkin.. it KIND OF looks like a pumpkin. oh well, you win some, you loose some. lol

this was the first few days of this style *hair clippie made by me*

how she came home from school today... that bow was actually over at her pony tail this morning. lol

and with added ribbon so you can kinda see it's a pumpkin!

she was concentrating hard on her leap pad! lol

*sigh* this girl just steals my heart =) 

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