Thursday, April 30, 2009

Black Bean Soup

I like black beans. So, when I make a pot of beans (usually once or twice a month) I make a LARGE batch. But, of course, everyone gets tired of eating the same thing every night. So, how many different ways can one use black beans? Here's what I do with 2 lbs of beans..
1-black bean soup (add corn & shredded chicken if I have it) w/fried tortilla strips
2. black beans and rice
3. burrito pie
4. black bean and corn quesadillas
5. black beans and chicken tortillas

Usually I end up freezing most for later meals so over a 2 week meal plan they aren't eaten everyday.
Here's my soup recipe:
  • 1 pound dry black beans, soaked overnight (drain out water before adding to pot)
  • 1 can Rotel or equivalent
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • throw it all in a crock pot and let it be! 6-8 hrs later-beans are ready to go-
Less the spices which are usually in the cupboard anyway, 2 lbs of beans run about 6.50 a pot. A great addition to my meals, and easy on the budget:)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Feelin' crafty

I've been feeling pretty ambitious the past couple of days. I found a large frame (almost 3x4') with a wood back while walking, (I'm recycling again!) and made a memo board. I used some fabric I already had, bought some buttons, nails and ribbon for a total of 6.50- My second project was compliments of Family Fun magazine. I heart Family Fun! This handy tip made short work of our stuffed animals roaming the house. I do have an animal net(which is full), so this little pen held the stuffies that the kids use the most. For just a few minutes to screw the elastic top and bottom and no out of pocket money, the kids zoo is behind elastic bars, and easy enough for little hands to take them out whenever they want to!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Top o' the mornin'

It's a new, beautiful day here in Sunny FL. I have been in the habit lately of getting up just a little bit earlier than the kids so I can get a short walk and hopefully organize some of my brain:) Some days I do better than others. Still, it's so lovely outside that just walking around the neighborhood gets me going (at least until naptime).
Shelby has pink eye:( It hasn't shown up in the others, so we'll see how it goes. She's been pretty good about not touching her eyes and washing hands constantly.
Last night Garry cooked dinner. His cooking day is now Monday so if you're this way, let him know! Last night he made lasagna (Campbell's soup version). He did a great job, and discovered sometimes you just have to dig around and make a meal work out of what one has. I look forward to next weeks meal! Dad was even home so we had a nice sit down meal.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Sara's Shower

Here are some pics from Sara's shower at Hart Sister's Tea room in Sanford. A great place for a fun afternoon of tea! If you weren't there, we missed you! Shelby was beaming from the time we put her new dress on her, til we drove home. This was her first big tea party with the "big" girls. Thanks to Tiff for her cake:)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Nope, haven't fallen off the earth, at least not today. Seems that by the time I sit down at the computer my brain has stopped working. 2 weekends ago(has it been that long?!) the kids went to Atlanta to see Uncle Kirk and Aunt Connie. Hawks won, yeah!For the 2 that didn't hear this story (the rest of you move on down), apparently we neglected to tell Bryce exactly what Uncle Kirk (Skyhawk) was. As they were watching the game, the adults were tellin' the kids "look at Uncle Kirk, look at Uncle Kirk". Bryce, looking around, sees no one that resembles Uncle Kirk. I guess Skyhawk came their way and Rachel pointed him out again. Bryce, looking at Skyhawk, said with disbelief, "my Uncle's a bird?!?" LOL, I guess we'll be more specific in the future! (Rachel and Skyhawk)
This past weekend on a whim, packed up and went down to Gma's (we gave them the week to recover!). It was a nice weekend of laying around and playing. Sadly, it was too cold to go swimming, at least for me-the kids and Papa went in. Family and friends came out on Sunday so we did what we do best, talk and eat. Garry got to drive every vehicle I think they had, and of course he's asking if the state would make an allowance and let him get his license early. Sometimes I wish he could, especially on the trip home! However, judging by the rate of speed he traveled in Papa's vehicles, we would get there quicker by horse and cart!

Monday, April 6, 2009

We made it thru the weekend!

We're back and back online. Apparently that commercial where they state the internet is everywhere hasn't been to Monticello! Anyway, Thursday we went to Monticello to Carol's. Friday found us in the Senate's chairs at the Capitol in Tallahassee and Beka's bday party, Saturday was a drive home, Easter party and basketball tournament, and Sunday was basketball awards and dinner. Whew, I'm tired just thinking about it! Here's some pictures from all the above events!On the way to Teen Pact at the State Capitol- Javan, Kyle Hope & Garry
Lunch break! Debating our bill in the Senate's ChambersHappy 7th Birthday, Beka!Bryce really liked coloring the eggs!Aidan huntin' for eggs

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


After we finished the van, we thought it would be fun to go by the ER. Ok, it's never fun to go to the ER. Ask Aidan. They stuck a prod up his butt. I thought he might have ingested Goo Gone(good for stains, not so good for tummies). Ok though, all well. I think it was just on his tongue and hands. Next time I will be a little smarter and just call poison control myself. I paid the hospital good money for them to do that:)

Mid week (How did it get here so fast?!)

Wow, it's Wednesday already. We're packing bags and cleaning out the vehicle in prep for our trip to Tallahassee for Teen Pact. Graciously Carol is letting us stay with her ( I say that because I, as always am bringing spare kids) and on top of that she is watching the little ones while we are at the Capitol. This is the first year Hope (Carol's) is able to go with us. Hope, I think would rather be with the boys anyway. She has always had a special place for Garry, even though up until this past year, he's really just humored her. This last trip up was one of the first time I think he saw her as something other than one of the little kids, although she's only 3 yrs younger than he is. The Wii brought them together (sigh, wiping tear from eye). Thank goodness for Japan:)
I've got the cooler ready to go. There is no way I'm getting out with everybody if I can help it! So, I'm packing lunch for the next 3 days. We'll get back on Sat just in time for the Easter party at Tif's, and Garry's last basketball clinic. I'm glad Bert's working this weekend, cause I plan to sleep as much as possible Sunday!