Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Mid-week goodness: Chicken Salad

So when Caleb got up this morning it was raining really really hard. And I got to stay snuggled up in bed. Mmm. It was nice. And now I am sipping coffee, watching Hoda and Kathie Lee, and blogging because it's a great way to procrastinate all the things I really need to do on my day off. It's going to be a wonderful day.

Last week when my man was gone on his "business" trip, I made this awesome chicken salad. I've never made chicken salad before so I looked up a bunch of recipes and picked the stuff that I love in chicken salad. It turned out pretty good and I want to remember how I made it. And share it with  you because it will make your Wednesday happier!

Yummy Chicken Salad Serves 4-5

- Two boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and cubed (I baked them for 40 min with olive oil and s&p)
-1/2 cup fat free mayo
-1/2 cup fat free plain greek yogurt 
-1/4 cup diced celery
-1/4 cup diced onion (ok, a small 1/4 cup)
-handful of dried cranberries 
-handful of pecan pieces
-squirt of lemon juice
-squirt of honey
-salt and pepper to taste

1. Mix the mayo, greek yogurt, honey, lemon, and s&p together. 
2. Mix chicken, onion, celery, cranberries, and pecan pieces into the dressing. 
3. Taste it. Add extra stuff if you need some more.
4. Enjoy life. Because it is better now.

When I took it to work, I ate it on a toasted sesame seed bagel. And it was Uh-Mazing. At home, I ate it on toasted wheat bread with a good handful of baby spinach. And it was really good. You could actually just eat it out of the bowl you mixed it in and your life would be complete.
Oh hello delicious chicken salad.

Ok, now I have to go do productive things. Darn adult life. Have a happy Wednesday!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Paintball: It does a marriage good.

I love my weekends off. And I love my husband. He got home from his week away on a "business" trip at like 3am on Thursday morning. Let me just say, this trip sounded like a darn good vacay to me. But I'm just glad he is home. And that I've had three beautiful days off!

Yesterday afternoon we went to play paintball with some of the other guys in the piping department on his job. We were on opposite teams all afternoon and had a great time shooting at each other. It strengthens the marriage, people.

Bring it on baby.

I have a number of large, painful welts on my bod. Somehow, all on the left side of me. You can tell which side went unprotected. I'm pretty sure at least half of those are from my loving man. Like I said, shooting does a marriage good. (See A Tennessee Thanksgiving)

Those guns were heavy. I was not a very helpful teammate. Sorry guys.

We grilled afterwards and watched some basketball. Go Butler! And the guys passed the baby around...
She didn't like it.

Caleb is already in bed, mourning a horrible KU loss. But at least Elite 8 is honorable. Even if losing to Virginia Commonwealth is not. (Who are they anyway??) But I am now and always a proud Jayhawk. Rock Chalk!

Hope you had a great weekend! And have a beautiful week! More recipes coming this week...

PS. Congratulations to The French family on their new addition! He is beautiful!

Monday, March 21, 2011

March Madness food. Eat it.

Things I love:
1. Jesus
2. my husband
3. March Madness

March Madness is just a good time. And being a Jayhawk typically gives me a great reason to get excited for the madness. We don't care about the Super Bowl (we actually recorded the game and fast forwarded through the game for the commercials and half time show) but when it comes to KU basketball, we are all in!

Last weekend when my parents were in town, we watched KU win the Big 12 tournament. And I made some yummy appetizers to eat instead of real dinner. Do you love bacon? Keep reading. On Friday night I made a big pot of chili and some cornbread. I used the leftovers for the rest of the weekend.

Big 12 Tournament Championship menu:
1. Bacon wrapped smokies
2. Cheese dip and chips
3. Veggie tray
4. Cupcakes

March Madness Bacon Wrapped Lil Smokies Serves 4-8...depending on how many you eat
Caleb went to a friend's house recently and raved about these little smokies. So I asked how to make them and it is super easy. And turns out, super delish.
-one package of little smokies
-about 3/4 lb bacon (I like center cut)
-brown sugar

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Wrap a large cookie sheet with aluminum foil.

2. Wrap each smokie in bacon. It takes 1/3 slice of bacon to wrap a smokie. I believe there were 42 smokies in the package I it took about 14 slices of bacon to wrap em all up. You could hold them  in place with a toothpick, but I just kinda tucked them underneath.

3. Cover the whole thing with brown sugar.

4. Bake for about 25 minutes or until the bacon crisps up a little bit. The bacon will continue to crisp as it cools for a few minutes after.

5. Enjoy. Get fat. You can't stop eating these. They are so dang good.

Pumped up Cheesy Dip Serves 4-8
We've all had this a million times, but I like it with some good extras.

- 1 lb Velveeta cheese (just use the 2% kind, no one will ever know and you can pretend its better for you)
- 1 can Rotel
- 1/4 cup diced onions
- 1 1/2 cups leftover chili

1. Dice up your processed cheesy goodness and throw it in a pot. Heat it up.

2. Add your can of rotel (don't drain), onions, and leftover chili.

3. Let it get all melty. Eat it with some tortilla chips. Mmmmm.

Oh yes.

Look at that bacon goodness. Your mouth is watering.

Eat some veggies just for good measure. Wash it down with a cupcake. I bought mine. Why make them when you have an awesome cupcake store just a few feet from your front door?

And for early games or post-Madness breakfast...
Morning after Madness Casserole Serves 8-12
I love breakfast. I eat breakfast food any time of day. This casserole is so good and so easy and serves like a million people...unless you are really hungry. Then you can just keep it to yourself.

- Sourdough bread, 6 slices
-1/2 pan of leftover cornbread
-1 lb sausage
-8 eggs
-1 1/4 cups milk
-1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
-Salt and peppa

1. Cube all your breads up, set them somewhere out of the way, and let them dry out for a day.

2. Cook up your sausage, breaking it up into little bits instead of forming it into patties. Drain.

3. In a 9x13 casserole dish, throw in all the breads. Spread out the sausage on top of the breads. Sprinkle your cheddar cheese on top of the sausage. 

4. Whisk the eggs and milk together, add some salt and peppa. Pour the mixture over bread/sausage/cheese goodness.

5. Cover the dish with aluminum foil. Stick in the fridge overnight.

6. The next morning, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Pull your casserole out of the fridge and put it straight into the oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until eggs are cooked through. Take the foil off about 15 minutes before the end of the baking process.

7. Let sit for a few minutes. Serve with some fruit salad. And coffee, duh. And have a beautiful day.

It's good because of the texture differences. Soft middle, crunchy top, gooey cheese. Yes please.

(This casserole would be good with some add ins like mushrooms, onions, peppers, tomatoes, ect, ect, ect. But I just kept it simple this time.)

Good morning.

That's all I've got for you. I was going to post it on Friday night but then I was tired from work. Saturday night I went out to dinner with one of the other Kiewit girls whose husband also abandoned her for the weekend. And last night I watched my boys get a ticket to the Sweet 16! Caleb was in Kansas City for a "meeting." Which sounds like vacation to me, since every time I call him, he is doing something fun. And I'm pretty sure the meeting lasted like an hour. He is heading to Omaha for more "meetings" and then coming back on Thursday I think. Meanwhile, I'm bringing home the bacon...

Have a wonderful Monday and a great week!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Good signs, good times: Voth parents rock it in East Tennessee

I sat down to write this post around 11 and then remembered that *gasp* I had not filled out my NCAA tournament bracket yet AND had not had a cup of coffee. So I sipped coffee and filled out my bracket with half an hour to be spared. That was a close one. Then I remembered that I needed to pay some bills and make some appointments, so I went ahead and did that. As I am sitting here at 12:30 still in my pjs with dirty dishes stacked up in the kitchen and a ton of laundry to do, I'm thinking I should probably not be making a blog post right now. Too bad.

My parents came to visit over my four day weekend and it was wonderful. We ate hot dogs from the hot dog place, ate cupcakes from the cupcake place, went shopping, watched basketball, went to Asheville, and just hung out and got caught up on things. I had fun and hope they did too! I didn't do a great job with the photo documentation. My camera skills and been sub par recently and mostly I am excited for spring so that my pictures aren't all brown. I did get a couple good ones though.

This is my favorite.

A few from our little trip to Asheville:

Drinking sodas from glass bottles. And holding hands.

Root beer float.

Hilarious sign. Who needs a mustache? For 10% off?
I agree with this. 100%.

Asheville is awesome. We love it. And we saw this awesome bumper sticker there.
10 points if you know what this is from.

I think we ate cupcakes every single day they were here. At least I did. A perfect excuse for cupcakes.

Anyway, I love when my parents come to visit! I actually had time to cook when they were here, which I love to do. And I have some great stuff to share. Which I will do tomorrow when I get off work. Because I hear the laundry calling my name!

Have a great Thursday and enjoy the start of March Madness! Rock Chalk Jayhawk! I'm taking my boys to the championship!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Favorite things...and a story about how I was right

I haven't had much to post about recently because I have been working a ton. The times I haven't been working, we haven't done much to take pictures of. Things we have been doing include watching tv, eating take out, and sleeping. I would love to post some pics of recipes or recent projects I've been doing around the house. But I haven't cooked a real meal in weeks and my house projects have come to a brief halt due to all the working. I do have a gem of a post for you today: some of my favorite things. Because you were dying to know what they are, I'm sure. And because on Mondays, Hoda and Kathie Lee always do their favorite things and one day I want to be them.

But first things first. I worked all weekend. Which is not one of my favorite things. Although we did have a taco salad potluck on Sunday which was awesome. Here is the story. On Friday night, things started going downhill with one of my patients. I called the resident who was on call and she came up right away. We got into it in the patient's room about what was wrong. The resident told me I was wrong. I told the resident she was wrong. Half an hour later, after rapid responding and transferring the patient to ICU, the resident told me I was right. Victory. I love being right. Just ask my husband.

Anyway, on to my favorite things. I went to lunch with one of the Kiewit girls today and we walked around downtown and discovered this awesome kitchen store. And I bought this. Our disposal always smells gross, especially after a weekend where boys ruled my house and I was at work. I used it immediately when I got home. And now my kitchen smells lemony fresh. Score! You can buy it for yourself at Amazon.

Favorite thing#2: Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear nail polish in Gunmetal. I love this color. And I love that after three days of work I have only one tiny chip.

Favorite thing #3: this a gorgeous scarf that Katie Van Sickle got me from Russia. She sent it to me this fall and I have worn it constantly since. The fabric is thin but the scarf is super wide so its actually really warm. I've used it as a shawl on cold airplanes. It looks amazing with my black Calvin Klein coat. It goes with dressy stuff. And I can put it on with sweats. This is literally what I've worn every day off all winter. Long sleeve tee, this scarf, jeans or sweats, and sunglasses. Go to Russia and get yourself one of these. It is life changing.

No, I haven't showered in days, how can you tell?

Favorite thing #4: the shoes in my entryway right now. The ones on the far right are from the cool store downstairs, Sophisticated Starlet. And whoever thought I would be a Converse All Star kinda girl? I think I just love shoes. All of them.
Love these.

Favorite thing #5: this little entryway table that is also a file cabinet. When I moved the office around, this needed to move. And now it catches mail and keys. And I put the pretty little lamp that my grandma got us on it. And this hilarious caricature drawing of Caleb and I at my senior prom.

Favorite thing #6: Diet Dr. Pepper. Because a girl can't live on coffee alone.

And now I will go continue to do laundry, take a shower, and gather all the tax related documents for our appointment tonight. Yay day off! Happy Monday to you all! Over and out.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

State of the House: Guest Bedroom

Funny story on an unrelated note to the purpose of this blog: One of my contacts was bugging me at work yesterday so I finally just took it out. But I can't see anything without contacts or glasses. So I had to leave one contact in. You don't want a blind nurse giving you a shot right? How bout some mystery medication? I walked around most of the day winking at things so I could read them. Someone suggested an eye patch. Finally around 4, I put the contact back in and it felt much better. And the patients never knew. Good day.


Just to prove that I am still on track with my New Year's Resolution, here are a few pictures of my February project. The guest room. It has been a storage space since we moved in, which you would expect. I cleaned it up a bit when we had guests last October, but since then it has really gotten out of control.

Don't you want to come stay at my house?

I didn't even put up a picture of the closet because it was basically impossible to take a picture that showed how entirely awful everything was. We also have a storage space above the closet that was filled with boxes. Yay. After taking many loads to the dumpster and an entire carload of stuff to the Salvation Army, the guest bedroom began to shape up. Important, since Caleb's BFF came in February.

Ahh, So much better.

After I cleaned out the closet, went through a few boxes, and reorganized things, most of stuff actually fit in the closet. Except the two biggest drums. I didn't know what to do with them so I made them into  night stands. And covered them with the Euro sham covers that the bed set came with.  I feel so clever.

Obviously going for an edgy, flower style. Because that is a thing. Ha.

Good thing that this room is clean. Not only did the BFF come visit in February, but my fam is coming to visit later this month. AND when I found out one of the guys Caleb works with is living in a hotel until he can move into his new place, I was like um come live in our CLEAN guest bedroom! Duh!

No more drums. But you can't actually watch tv because its not hooked up. Just a mean trick.

So I have successfully gotten rid of a significant amount of clutter in my house. Which makes it a lot easier to keep things clean. (Who knew?) So I will be concentrating on keeping things clean. I need a plan, obviously. I'll get back to you on that one. I think that my project for the month of March will be just keeping things manageable. I'm working a ton of overtime this month and with other people being in my house for the whole month it might be a little difficult. But don't worry, the New Year's Resolution will prevail!

And now I will go bask in all the glory that is Hoda and Kathy Lee, coffee, and eggs. Ahh.

Happy Wednesday!