30 September 2010

Easy Recipe: Mediterranean Chicken

I am always on the lookout for easy (and healthy) recipes. This one recently caught my eye. Since Daughter is not a fan of olives, I thought I'd try it while she's away at school! (Sorry, dear...I know you're enjoying your cafeteria burritos!)

This recipe came from the Better Homes and Gardens website. Instead of polenta, I used couscous -- another one of my favorite things. This recipe was quite tasty! Seriously, how can you go wrong with olives and couscous?


1/2 of a 6.5-oz. jar oil-packed dried tomatoes with Italian herbs

4 small skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (1 to 1 1/4 lb.)

1 cup assorted olives, drained - I used both green and kalamata olives (surely one of the greatest foods on earth)

1/2 cup dry white wine or reduced-sodium chicken broth

4 small bay leaves (optional)

1 cup cornmeal


1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Drain tomatoes, reserving the oil. Season chicken with salt and black pepper. In 10-inch oven-going skillet heat all the reserved oil over medium-high. Cook chicken in hot oil 3 minutes each side or until browned; remove skillet from heat. Add tomatoes, olives, wine, and bay leaves. Transfer to oven. Bake, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 170 degrees F when inserted in chicken.

2. Meanwhile, for polenta, in large saucepan bring 3 cups water to boiling. In a bowl combine cornmeal, 1 cup cold water, and 1 tsp. salt; gradually stir into boiling water. Cook and stir until thick and bubbly. Reduce heat; stir occasionally. Remove and discard bay leaves. Serve chicken with polenta and olives. Makes 4 servings.

27 September 2010

A College Visit!

We had the pleasure of visiting our daughter, a freshman at Indiana University-Jacobs School of Music, this past weekend. While it may not have been terribly exciting for her to see US, it was a real treat for us to see HER! We knew she was doing well, but no amount of texting or Skyping can substitute for a real live hug.

We went to the IU football game on Saturday -- not to see the game, of course. We went for the band! The IU Marching Hundred (which actually has 280+ members) is a very hard-working group of kids. At every home game, they play a PRE-pre-game show outside the stadium, then a pre-game show, a half-time show, and a post-game show. They're also a very active pep band during the entire game. She had told us that game days were tiring -- and now we know why! All of this cymbal playing has resulted in one burly girl!

Although it may not be evident to her, we could see a change in her in just one month's time. She has always been independent, but she's clearly more so now. She's confident and happy. She doesn't need us in the same way now, and that's OK. After all, we raise our children to be independent and successful young adults. It's good to see her moving so deftly in that direction!

24 September 2010

Feline Friday: Mi Show!

Sumtimes I git so exsited to see mi show! I sit bi da tv wating for mi mommie to make it come on!

Here is mi show goin into da little trai. I haf to halp my mommie becuz she is teknologie-impared.

Mommie, NO! Dis is NOT mi show! Ur pushing da rong butten!

Now here's mi show! It's coming on! I am waching intentlie.

And here's one of mi favorit partz!

I love mi show!

Writed by Lily

23 September 2010

Cookie Exchange Projects

I've been working on a few samples for a cookie exchange display Dawn is putting together at Memory Bound. In the process, I've learned a lot about cookie exchanges. I think I am the only person in the world who has never been to one!

We used the new Fancy Pants Christmas line for all of our samples so our display is perfectly coordinated! Among a few other items, I made a recipe book with customized recipe cards inside.

I also made tent signs which you could put on your cookie exchange table. I created the cookies by tracing my Christmas cookie cutters onto cardstock, then I inked them for a bit of dimension. For the frosting, I covered a white cardstock base in Glossy Accents then sprinkled with glitter. It was almost like baking...but without the calories!

Stop by Memory Bound soon and take a look at our display! I hope you'll be inspired to host your own cookie exchange this holiday season. I'm even planning to go to one! :)

20 September 2010

Inside Lily's Fort

One of Lily's favorite hiding spots is under the cloth-covered round table in our home office area. The long tablecloth creates a cozy fort for napping.

But only recently did I discover that she's also been using her fort to hide her treasures, including a few plastic straws and her cherished puff balls.

What good is a fort without your stash?

17 September 2010

Feline Friday: Yogurtz!

Sum daiz, mi mommie haz yogurtz for noms. Dis maiks me verie happie. U can see da tip of mi tung, Im so happie jus thinkin bout how gud it will bee!

Den comes da moment wen i getz a taiste!

Yogurtz = mi tru luv!

15 September 2010

What's on Your Workdesk? Wednesday

I'm finding myself sporadically playing along with this challenge, as posted on Julia's blog and shared by my blogging friend Linda. It's fun to see what kinds of projects are currently on the tables of creative people!

I usually work on the floor but for this project, I made a conscious effort to TRY to work on my table. Long story short: I couldn't do it. I ended up using the table as a "staging" area but still sat on the floor to put together my project. I guess I'm a whole lot more comfortable sprawled out on the floor than sitting in a chair.

Today I've been finishing up a Thanksgiving mini album for a class I'll be teaching this fall at Memory Bound. I used the WRMK 4x6 tablet as the foundation for this little album. You may recall that I made a Halloween version of this album awhile back. And as soon as the product comes in, I'll be making a Christmas album, too!

This little album has over 25 pages of different sizes and configurations, pockets, and plenty of space for small photos. Many of the pages are actually journaling cards, so I decided to make this album about gratitude. The album has lots of room to write about life's many blessings.

It would be easy to add a few seasonal recipe cards to this album. Just punch holes and stick them into the album for a fun (and useful!) holiday keepsake.

14 September 2010

Double Tabby Tuesday

Every time I sit down at the computer to work on a project, I have to work around two curious and helpful tabbies. It seems like I'm always looking over the top of cat ears.

But I wouldn't have it any other way!

13 September 2010

Christmas in September

I've been working on several projects for Memory Bound...notably 20 Christmas cards for a class I'll be teaching twice this fall.

I chose the brand new Crate Paper Christmas line, "Snow Day", for my card set. I love the whimsical shapes and non-traditional colors!

Working on these cards reminds me that the holidays are right around the corner!

09 September 2010

First Day of Class!

Having a daughter away at college means I have to take what I can get for photos. I asked her to be sure to get a "first day of class" photo last week and to my surprise, she did! I guess I've trained her well!

After a few reminders, she e-mailed them to me this week. I don't think I've ever been happier to receive blurry cell phone pictures. Look at that smile!

We could not be more excited for her!

06 September 2010

A Labor Day Message from Lily

It's OK to let yourself be suddenly overtaken by a nap.

Especially on Labor Day.

03 September 2010

Feline Friday

Poor Tinsel. With Lily in the house, she's always a step behind.

02 September 2010

Tabby Thursday

There's just something completely endearing about the way Lily transports her prized puffballs to some secret hiding place.

Without fail, it makes my day. :)