Friday, March 28, 2014

Crockpot Tacos

One of our Favorite Go-To dinners!  Easy. Simple. Yummy!

I received a version of this recipe from my sweet Friend Cory a few years back.  Our recipe has changed a little through the years, but still is so yummy and easy!  

Crockpot Tacos

5-7 Frozen Chicken Tenderloins or 3 Breasts
1 Can Mild Red Enchilada Sauce
1 Can Mild Green Chilie Enchilada Sauce
1/2-1 Jar Salsa  (homemade or Store Bought)
1/2 - 1 pkg. Taco Seasoning
1 can Chopped green chilies (optional)
Onion (optional)
2-3 Tbl. Brown Sugar (optional)

Place all ingredients in a Crockpot.  Cook on low 4-5 hours.  About 1/2 before serving, take out Chicken and Shred it. Place back in Crockpot.       

Serve with hard or soft Taco shells! Garnish with lettuce, tomatoes and Cheese. We enjoy ours with Cafe Rio's Creamy Tomatillo Dressing,   recipe is HERE.


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Monday, March 24, 2014

Cafe Rio Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

I wanted to share with you this yummy Dressing recipe.  I love this on Taco Salads or even as a dip with Salsa and Chips!  It's a knock off of Cafe Rio's Dressing and pretty easy to make!  


  • 1 (1 oz.) package of Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix
  • 1 C.  Mayonaise
  • 1 C.  Buttermilk (small carton)
  • 1 large or 2 small tomatillos (they are green and by the tomatoes)
  •  *IF you cannot find tomatillos, I  buy a can of diced green chilies and substitute those, it turns out great! 
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1/2 -3/4 bunch cilantro ( I just grab a handful and place it in the processor unchopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 small jalapeƱo,  with seeds removed

1. Place all of the above  ingredients in a food processor or blender.  Blend them all up, If the dressing appears too thick I add some milk to it while I'm blending it to thin it down… When finished,  let the dressing sit in the refrigerator for at least 1/2 hour before serving.  This allows the ingredients to blend together.    

2.  This is fabulous over taco salads or burritos or even a topping on enchiladas.    One of my favorites is over Crock Pot tacos!  I'll share that recipe soon too!


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Monday, March 17, 2014

Simple Ruler Frame

I made this simple Photo frame using 2 pieces of wood and a ruler!  No glass involved.

It is a simple and cute frame that is tacked down only at the ends of the ruler allowing a photo to slide    in the middle section tucked in behind the ruler to hold your photo! 

It can be used to hold several photos, a recipe, a note to a loved one, a shopping list or how cute would this be as a teacher gift with a cute photo or note tucked in it?  

Or the front can also serve as a stand or display.  This is kind of  a Scrapbook look below…

For this project you will need two blocks of wood 3/4 in. thick.  Dimensions are below…

a ruler

1 1/2 in. brad nails or some type of nails to nail the blocks together.

5/8 in. brad nails

Miter Saw

Brad Nailer

1. -Cut a block of wood for the back piece 7.5 in. long by 5.5 in. wide

-Cut a block for the front piece 7.5 in. long by 1.5 in wide

-A ruler cut the same length as the blocks pieces 7.5 in.  long

2. Paint your blocks the color of your choice & stain your ruler.

3. Stand the Back Piece on its side horizontal, lay the front piece in front flush with the back piece.  On the Back of the Frame, nail the two blocks together using a Nailer and 1 1/2 in. brads. The nails should be coming from the back of the frame and being shot towards the front block. 

Next  Remember to...
(Change out your size brad nails to a 5/8 in. brad for this next step)

4.  NOTE on this next part, only nail the ruler down at the very ends of the ruler using the 5/8 in. brads.  The middle portion of the ruler cannot be nailed down.  This is where the photos are tucked behind the ruler to hold them down.  

Sand the edges and lightly stain to antique it if desired!  Project complete! 

Thanks for reading,

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Ivy's Newborn Photoshoot

 It dawned on me the other day, I have never shared with you the Photos I shot of Ivy when she was born!  I did several different photo shoots to get the different shots I wanted of her.

I first went to the Fabric Store and  found different fabrics I wanted to try for backdrops.  I bought about a yard and a half of each type of fabric that I liked

I made her little tiny skirt...

I next gathered various props that I would need to use.  My friend Melissa was a great help here.  She had several different old suitcases and a scale.  

These photos were actually shot outside on my back patio on the outside cabinet I built.  Came in perfect for a photo shoot. I just used duct tape to hold the fabric on the outside of my house… Just loved this one...

I next did one with an old scale.  I found this beautiful Red fabric and  knew it would be perfect behind a Red dresser we had.   (NOTE I had spotters for my shoots!  never know when a little one might move around on you!)

I found a big blue bowl and used a pillowcase with a crocheted edge to embellish…

I still just want to kiss this cute face!  I love how the shadows made her hair look even darker...

I did some of her in a basket layered with blankets…

This one has to be one of my most favorite Pictures ever!!! She did not like to bend…. I mean at All !!!!  This seriously was the last attempt I got of this pose and I love it. You wouldn't believe me If I told you I took this on my son's bed,  her propped up on blankets with the last bit of natural light streaming in before sunset!  Its a precious one!

  We call it Ivy Scrunchie Face!

The last shoot I did was outside in the Hollow.  I wanted to use my Great-Grandpa's old Trunk.  I had an idea of a clothesline to hang behind her.  I made the towels with sheets and embellished them to coordinate with her skirt and blankets.  

It was nice and warm… (August night)  Ryan helped me set up.  We strung rope from ladders and shovels, set the old trunk up.  It was so fun to do.  There was even a deer off in the distance running around…

She was nice and awake for us so we went with it…

In another post, I will show you how I incorporated most of these photos into her birth announcement!  It about put me over the edge, but one of my most favorite baby announcements  ever….. can't wait to share!

I also wanted to mention something exciting.  If you follow me on Instagram,  a neat thing  just happened to me.  I was contacted by DIY Lifestyle magazine.  They wanted to feature a couple of my projects in their next issue.  This magazine is available in the App store as a download.  

 Yesterday, I noticed their latest issue was on the newsstand on my phone.  When I opened the issue, I was in Shock!  On the cover is my Message Center I built!  I have been overwhelmed with gratitude.  What an honor! Thank you to the DIY Lifestyle Magazine team!  Pretty neat! 

OK so here is some more great news!  for my readers and for a limited time, you can download this issue for FREE!

Here are the details
Have an iPad and looking for some DIY inspiration? Check out the latest issue of the DIY Lifestyle Magazine, for free! Many DIY projects were contributed by talented bloggers and  two of  my articles were published in this issue! For your free trial, download the magazine here: Click on SUBSCRIBE and then CURRENT SUBSCRIBERS. Enter in promo code: march1free to get the current issue for free; and do it soon because the coupon is only valid until April 13, 2014. Enjoy!

With Much Love & Gratitude,

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