Monday, January 30, 2012

Products I Love!

I love to find new products, to make life easier and more organized. The Card Cubby is a fun product to organize those cards in your wallet, in the bottom of your purse, or maybe in a drawer somewhere. With the alphabet tabs, you can quickly file them. R can be for reward card! G can be for gift cards! This would also make a great gift. The red is perfect for Valentine's Day! Check out the link below to see the website and the other styles that are available. The link is a refer a friend one, so the company will know I sent you there!

I just used the code CCRS at checkout and got a 10% discount!

I Save With Coupons-You can too!

I love the blog-Your Retail Helper! Below you will see the helpful information that she posts. Join my blog to keep up-to-date on the good deals I am finding and passing on to you. Want to get her emails? I have her blog link posted below under My Blog Lists!

Your Retail Helper's Top Eight

Full List

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

2012 Declutter Calendar

Declutter Calendar--

On my Path to Progress, part of what I am doing is focusing on one organizing activity each day. I am sharing this Declutter Calendar for those of you who would like to do this too. Along with this, I am still using the Menu Planning Calendar that I posted earlier on my Blog! The recipes have been awesome and I like having leftovers for the next day. Thanks to Pinterest bloggers for these awesome ideas! This calendar comes from Beth @ My Simpler Life.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Path to Progress Continues!

One project that doesn't happen often enough at my house is getting rid of old spices! Could this be why all my meals tasted the same-bland? It was fun, the day I got the Tupperware Spice Containers(era 1990ish)! No, the spices aren't THAT old. Dumping them into the clear containers, labeling them, and putting them on a carousel in my cabinet! Well, I have come to the conclusion that that probably isn't the best method for me. I tossed most of what I had on hand and headed out to Price Chopper. It was early that morning, so the spices were all lined up in neat rows. I took one of each. It was easy to see if I had missed any! Here is the progress. Out with the old!

In with the new!

What else did I accomplish with this spice center makeover? 2 empty kitchen drawers!

Now onto the "too small for coats" closet....It is now a "puppy" closet with all of their things in one place(except for the treats in my lower desk drawer).

Josie's hook, Ellie's hook, toy box, and bins with the dog clothes, more toys, and one for my extra jammies that didn't fit in the bathroom.
One more picture-I hung the leftover lattice piece from my master bedroom closet scarf project in the hall closet. I will probably add cup hooks to use it for more storage. For now, it is bare, but lots of possibilities!

Will the projects ever end? Probably not! Until next time....

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Soup-er Recipes from Biltmore Estate!

Well we new it couldn't last much longer. Kansas City has only had .1 of a inch of snow and tonight we are under a Winter Weather Advisory! As I sit here with a puppy on my lap and the kitchen door open, I share some warm winter comfort food ideas! I love soup on a chilly winter night and here are some from the Biltmore Estate collection! I have picked 5 to post here. Enjoy!

Banish The Chill

This time of year, nothing satisfies like piping–hot soups, flavorful stews, or a traditional cassoulet—a delicious French dish that typically combines a hearty blend of meats (often pork sausage or poultry) and white haricot beans. Enjoy the following recipes with suggested Biltmore™ Wine pairings from our winemakers.

Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Serves 8-10
Ingredients:• 1 28 oz cans of red peppers or 2 fresh peppers, chopped
• 1 medium onion, finely chopped
• 1 shallot, finely chopped
• 1 quart chicken stock
• 1 cup heavy cream
• 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
• 1 sprig thyme
• 1 bay leaf
• Few sprigs parsley
• Salt and pepper to taste
Method:Sweat the onion, shallot and garlic, in a little olive oil until soft. Add the peppers and cover with chicken stock. Add the herbs and bring to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Remove the herbs and purée the soup in a blender until smooth. Strain into a clean pot then add the heavy cream and bring to a boil. Adjust the seasoning and serve hot.Winemaker's Suggested Pairing:Biltmore® Cardinal's Crest® Red Wine

French Onion Soup

Serves 6
Ingredients:• 1 pound onions, sliced
• 1 cup dry sherry
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 1 bay leaf
• 6 cups chicken or beef stock
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 6 slices of crusty French baguette
• 2 cups Swiss cheese (preferably Gruyere)
Method:Cook the onions in the butter with salt and pepper and the bay leaf over medium–high heat, stirring to release caramelizing onions from the bottom of the pot. Once a deep, dark color is obtained, add the sherry and reduce until dry. Add the chicken or beef stock and simmer for 15 minutes. Adjust the seasoning and spoon into bowls. Place the bread slices on top and sprinkle the cheese over the bread. Place under the broiler until the cheese melts and bubbles. Serve immediately.Winemaker's Suggested Pairing:Biltmore® Pinot Grigio

Butternut Squash BisqueServes 4

Ingredients:• 3 butternut squash
• 1 onion, small chopped
• 2 stalks celery, chopped
• 1 clove garlic
• 1 shallot, chopped
• 6 oz sherry cooking wine
• 16 oz chicken stock or broth
• 12 oz heavy whipping cream
• 1/2 tsp dried sage
• 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
• 1 Tbsp Kosher salt
Method:In a heavy–bottom sauce pot, sauté onions, celery, garlic and shallots until translucent. Cut squash in half, remove seeds and roast in 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes. Deglaze with sherry and reduce wine by 2/3. Peel squash and add pulp to soup pot and bring to a simmer. Add remaining ingredients to soup pot and simmer for an hour. Puree soup with a stick mixer or food processor until smooth. Strain soup and serve.Winemaker's Suggested Pairing:Biltmore® Riesling

White Bean, Kale and Ham Hock Soup (Gluten–Free)

Serves 4
Ingredients:• 1 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced
• 1 1/2 cup carrots, diced
• 1 cup celery, diced
• 2/3 cup fresh garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup blended oil (Canola/oil mix)
• 1 1/2 pounds dry Cannellini beans
• 2 smoked ham hocks
• 1 bag kale, washed, stemmed, and chopped
• 1 1/4 cup white wine
• 2 1/2 Tbsp chicken base
• 11 1/4 cup chicken stock
• 4 3/4 cups cold water
• 1/3 cup lemon juice
• 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
• 2 tsp liquid smoke
• 1 bouquet* of 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, 2 spring of rosemary, 1 bay leaf, 4 peppercorns, 1 clove
• 2 Tbsp red pepper flakes
• 2 tsp celery seed
• 2 tsp dry thyme
• 2 tsp dry oregano
• 1/3 cup sherry (dry)
*To make bouquet, wrap all ingredients in cheesecloth and tie with butcher’s twine.
Method:Sweat onions, celery, carrots and garlic in oil in a large pot until they become very soft. Add the remaining ingredients except the kale and sherry. Bring to a bare simmer and cook until beans are just tender and not mushy. Remove ham hock and set aside to cool. Add the kale and cook until kale is tender. Dice meat from ham hocks, removing any fat. Return meat to pot. Add sherry and adjust seasoning with salt if needed, ham hocks are salty.Winemaker's Suggested Pairing:Biltmore® Chardonnay Sur Lies

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Serves 6-8
Ingredients:• 4 lbs beef chuck roast, cubed to 1"
• 6 oz bacon, medium diced
• 2 cups yellow onions, medium diced
• 1 1/2 cups red peppers, medium diced
• 2 cups sweet potatoes, large diced
• 1/2 cup poblano peppers, seeded and medium diced
• 2 Tbsp garlic, minced
• 1 tsp chipotle pepper puree
• 1 tsp flour
• 2 cups canned black beans, rinsed
• 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
• 3 bay leaves
• 1 1/2 Tbsp chili powder
• 2 tsp coriander
• 2 tsp cumin
• 2 tsp oregano
• 3 cups red wine
• 2 cups beef broth
• 2 cups canned tomatoes, diced
• 2 Tbsp tomato paste
• Kosher salt to taste
• 1/4 cup lime juice
• 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
• 1 tsp sugar
Method:In a stock pot over low heat, add bacon and render fat until bacon is crisp. Remove bacon for later use but retain the fat. Season beef with salt and pepper. Turn heat up to medium–high. Working in small batches, brown beef making sure not to add too much at one time. Once one batch is browned, remove from pan and repeat until all beef is browned. Set beef aside.

Lower heat and add vegetables to pot with bay leaves and a pinch of salt and cook until soft and translucent, approximately 10–12 minutes. Add spices and continue to cook 4 minutes. Add tomato paste and flour and cook an additional minute. Stir wine and broth into pot. Add beef. Bring to a simmer, cover tight and let simmer slowly for 1 hour. Add sweet potatoes, tomatoes, black beans, and continue to simmer uncovered until both beef and sweet potatoes are tender and chili is thick. Add lime juice, sugar, and season with salt and black pepper. Finish with chopped cilantro and serve with sour cream and crispy bacon.
Winemaker's Suggested Pairing:Biltmore® Merlot

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Simply Delicious – Tuscan Parmesan Potato Soup | Biltmore Inspirations

Tuscan Parmesan Potato Soup

  • 8 unpeeled, large white potatoes, cubed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons Tuscan Parmesan Seasoning Mix
  • 1 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 pint half-and-half cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • In a large stock pot combine potatoes, onion, celery, and broth. Bring to a boil and simmer over medium heat until potatoes are almost done. Add Tuscan Parmesan Seasoning Mix, bacon, and half-and-half; stir well. Simmer on low until potatoes are done. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve and enjoy!

Monday, January 9, 2012

101 Pretty Printables

Check out the fun post I found on Pinterest! If you aren't signed up for Pinterest, let me know and I will send you an invitation! I consider it time well spent on the computer! :)

These pretty printables are fabulous and free…you can’t go wrong with that! Decorate your home with quotes and flowers, throw a party that looks like a million bucks or wrap a gift with the perfect tag.  Oh my gosh…you are going to love these!!!  There’s a little something for everyone.  I wish I could share a photo of each one, but my blog would most likely blow up…ha!
Make sure your printer has color ink before you start, and feel free to share this list with all your friends…they’ll love you for it!
  1. Chevron Invitations & Tags – The TomKat Studio
  2. I’m Sew Very Happy Print – CRAFT
  3. Kokeshi Doll Recipe Cards – Creative Mamma
  4. Vintage Round Labels – Cathe Holden
  5. Summer Fruit Labels & Tags – Creature Comforts
  6. Handmade Labels for Gifts – Everything Etsy
  7. Whatever Is Printable – Arian Armstrong
  8. Vintage Shell Clip Art – Martha Stewart
  9. Beautiful Thank You Cards – Do-It-Yourself Invitations
  10. Toy Bin Storage Tags – Lily Jane
  11. Vintage Music Sheets – Crafty Secrets
  12. Star Trek Paper Dolls – Paper Thin Personas
  13. Lavender Wrapping Bands – Daily Suze
  14. Canning Party Printables – Cottage Industrial
  15. Star Wars Tags & Stickers – Living Locurto
  16. Vintage Inspired Placemats – The Pretty Blog
  17. Turquoise & Red Banner Invitations – HGTV
  18. Recycling Bin Labels – Poppytalk
  19. I Love Us Print – Eighteen25
  20. Mama’s Gonna Snap Poster – MaryJane and Galoshes
  21. Hello Lover Camera Print – Missie Krissie
  22. Vintage Thread Labels – Just Something I Made
  23. Vintage Envelopes – Fuzzimo
  24. Love Notes Box Printables – Eighteen25
  25. Yummy Cupcake Topper – Paperglitter
  26. Baby Shower Printables – Fresh Linen
  27. Gift Pillow Box – Up Up, The Blog
  28. Build Your Own Cupcake – Vol. 25
  29. Vintage Campers – The Handmade Home
  30. Yellow & Grey Baby Shower Printables – Bump Smitten
  31. Vintage Horses Art Print – The Graphic Fairy
  32. Ledger Printables – Mel Stampz
  33. Carpe Diem Print – Snickerdoodle
  34. Bunting Thank You Card – 74 Lime Lane
  35. Lemonade Printables – I Do It Yourself
  36. Travel Games – Free Puzzles
  37. Don’t Do That Thing Print – Hello, Good Gravy!
  38. Ice Cream Sundae Bar Printables – Eat Drink Chic
  39. Hello Kitty Birthday Kit – Shery K Designs
  40. What Brings You Joy Print – Fresh Picked Whimsy
  41. Pastel Party Invitation – HGTV
  42. Chevron Candy Pouch & Tags – I Still Love You
  43. Vintage Postage Stamps – Just Something I Made
  44. Skidamarink Print – Vintage Dutch Girl
  45. Creative Gift Tags – Art by Julie H
  46. ABC Print – Live & Enliven
  47. Go Fish Game – Meet the Dubiens
  48. Weekly Planner – Arian Armstrong
  49. Pretty Frame Templates – See Jane Scrapbook
  50. Make A Wish Birthday Printables – Eighteen25
  51. Photobooth Props – Oh Happy Day
  52. Polka Dot Gift Tags – Hello, Good Gravy!
  53. Vintage Post Card Images – Fuzzimo
  54. Get Well Tags – Just Something I Made
  55. Made Just For You Tags – I Still Love You
  56. Look At The Stars… – Sprik Space
  57. Bird Printables – Rebecca’s Misc.
  58. Rise & Shine Print plus more – Inspired by Charm
  59. Mailing Label & Tag – The Nimbus Factory
  60. Hello Lover Sewing Machine Print – Missie Krissie
  61. Floral Party Invitation – HGTV
  62. Happiness Is A Warm Glue Gun Print – Man Made
  63. Pinwheel Cupcake Topper – The Long Thread
  64. Airmail Thank You Notes – Jessica Jones Design
  65. Miss You Card – Vale Design
  66. Hospital Survival Kit – My Own Road
  67. Vintage Sweet Shop Baby Shower – Hostess with the Mostess
  68. Save the Date Printables – The Pretty Blog
  69. Let Your Dreams Set Sail Print – Sprik Space
  70. Prayer Changes Everything Print & More – A Step In The Journey
  71. Love Is All You Need Print – Inspired by Charm
  72. You Get What You Get Print & More – Becky Higgins
  73. Do What You Love Print – How Joyful
  74. Super Moo Cards – Oh My Handmade
  75. Gift Wrapping Set – Poppytalk
  76. Will We Have Rainbows Print – Making It Lovely
  77. Rule The World Print – Thirty Handmade Days
  78. Land of the Free Print – I Heart Nap Time
  79. Hearts Card – The Green Gal
  80. Yellow Lattice Invitations – Easton Place {HGTV}
  81. Don’t Worry Be Happy Print – Live & Enliven
  82. Botanical Print – The Graphics Fairy
  83. Party Journaling Cards – Creativity Prompt
  84. DIY Envelope Liners – Ellinee
  85. Family Subway Art – My Own Road
  86. Believe You Can Print – It’s A Crafty Life
  87. Lots-O-Dots – Allsorts
  88. Vintage Alphabet Cards – The Handmade Home
  89. Animal Note Sheet – Creature Comforts
  90. Beautiful Thank You Cards – The Pretty Blog
  91. Do The Impossible… – Thirty Handmade Days
  92. Sweet Tweets Treat Topper – It Is What It Is
  93. Those Who Bring Sunshine Print – Collected
  94. Floral Happy Birthday Card – HeySusy
  95. Awesome Bookplates – Frecklewonder
  96. Gift Tag & Bookmark – Simply Modern Mom
  97. Passport & Luggage Tag Printables – The Pretty Blog
  98. Red Coral Printables – The Graphics Fairy
  99. Measure Twice, Cut Once – Yellow Songbird
  100. Fox Bookmark – Lemon Squeezy
  101. I Love You To The Moon Print – Sprik Space
That ought to keep you busy for awhile!  :)