Thursday, June 14, 2012

Book Review: Don't Panic: Quick, Easy and Delicious Meals for Your Family

Alternative Title to the Post: Why I would never make it as a food blogger ;-)

First off let me say, this post is sooo late! I was supposed to post this the week before we left for Ireland and somehow I totally forgot! Partly, because honestly I stocked up on the cheapest food I could find that week to squeeze every penny out of our budget for our trip. Also partly, because when I excitedly opened up the book when it arrived, I didn't see anything in the contents that screamed "cook me right now!" so I put it on the shelf to go through again, and there it sat in the midst of vacation getting readiness, all alone and forgotten.

So, as I have mentioned, although there are some recipes in the book that look ok, I was disappointed that nothing really stood out to me as something I was dying to try. My general rules of thumb for new recipes are that it has to contain mostly ingredients that I would have around the house, we have to already like the general idea of it, and has to be kid friendly.  Quite a lot of these recipes, I found, either didn't sound as good as I already make it, or had too many ingredients that I would have to buy specifically for that meal.

Now - there are some things that I may still try in here (and I have already tried some - pics to follow). There are some great things about the book, like the keys at the top which at a glance can tell you which dishes are lighter fare, the author's favorites, have minimal ingredients, are great for entertaining and freezable meals. I really like that. I also like that on the freezable meals, there are notes for how to make multiple batches for freezing. Great idea!

Now for your entertainment purposes - here are some pics of a meal I made from this book :-)

Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken (p121)
 First I seasoned the chicken, then browned it in butter...

 After throwing PLACING the chicken in the crock pot, I mixed water, lemon juice, garlic and bouillion to the pan and brought it to a boil, then covered the chicken with the sauce.

Here you may imagine a picture of an ugly flowery crockpot which to save your eyes from the shock, I did not add a picture of. Although, you may imagine a yummy lemony chicken smell here...

I also made the Glazed Snow Peas Recipe on page 73 and I LOVED those!

That's all there was to it folks! It wasn't bad - not as lemony as I would have hoped and a little dry. If I made it again, I would shorten the cooking time and add more lemon, but I LOVED the snow peas (in fact I may have eaten all my kid's helping of those ;-)

If you enjoy cooking, you should at least glance through the contents of this one, because they are all pretty quick to put together and not everyone is as picky as me so I bet you will find a few winners :-)

PS - This book was written by Susie Martinez, Vanda Howell, and Bonnie Garcia (I just felt the title was already so long it might break the title bar:-) )

Thank you SO much to Revell publishing for a free copy of this book to review, and their patience with me in posting it! 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Aidan is 3!

It was different this morning. When you climbed into bed beside me you didn't fit into me the way you used to, all tiny and snuggly. You have moved from toddler to little boy and now you take up much more space in my bed :-) It's hard to believe you are three already, but on the other hand, it's hard to believe you are only turning three now because you have a pretty big vocabulary for such a little dude.
This morning, when we were getting breakfast, I was waiting for you to do something to help me and trying to get you to hurry. You turned and looked at me just like I look and you and said, "Can you just be patient?" in the same tone I use when I say it to you. Funny man.

You are a very physical person, and while that means you get in trouble for always hanging out of people, it also means you give the best hugs EVER!

You love your sunglasses, and wear them everywhere like a little superstar. You don't really have a favorite show or toy right now, but you enjoyed Disney junior shows at Granny's house and love to pretend to be things with Eóin. You are really going to miss Big Bro when he goes to school. Hopefully you and Molly will become good buddies too.

You're name means little fire and you certainly live up to that name. You are a fiery little guy, and we hope that God can use that fire to do great things for him as you are growing up!

Here are Aidan's birthday minute pictures so far:

June 2, 2007 3:07pm

June 2, 2010 3:07pm

June 2, 2011 (nap time) 3:07pm

 June 2, 2012 3:07pm

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Book Review: The Ride of Her Life, by Lorna Seilstad

It's summer again at Lake Manawa, and this year, Lilly Hart is working hard to take care of herself and her son. She bravely stood up to her in-laws after her husband passed away, but now must fight to prove that she can take care of her family. But working as a cook does not meet her in-law's standards of what is proper for their only reminder of their son. When Nick Perrin comes to town to build a new roller coaster for the resort, he really wants to help Lilly and her son, but Lilly struggles to trust after her great loss. But he gradually starts to wear down her walls and take her on the ride of her life :-)

I was excited to see this book come up for review after reading the first two books in the series already. I think Seilstad does a great job of mixing history of the area, romance and usually a little twist or two. She also usually provides a spiritual lesson that the character is learning and I enjoy following their journey of faith. Once again, I think the cover is a little corny and if I wear to judge if I would read it based on the cover, I probably would have passed, but I'm glad I didn't because these books make great summe reads. Though I think this would be ok to read as a stand alone book, I think it would be worth your while to start at the beginning and follow all three girls through the books together.

Available May 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Thank you to Revell Publishers for a free copy of this book to review.