Thursday, January 29, 2009

Tea Party!

Here are the pictures from the tea party. I really think the kids had a great time. Everyone was dressed up and we took the first 5 minutes of the party to go over some etiquette. All the children did very well. I am hoping to continue this begin etiquette lessons with my own children. Now that we have all the stuff I think I will use those Wednesday afternoons, since the kids don't have school then, to have a tea party just me and my kids!

Last of the Party prep.

Well the day of the tea party has arrived and I spent the entire morning and early afternoon making salad, sandwiches, and cupcakes. Making sure the area was clean and the tables were nicely set. I will make another post of the actually party later today.

Here is a Luncheon Chicken Salad. I used ABC pasta instead of the Orzo it called for because I thought the kids would enjoy it more. I got the recipe from Becky Evans and I think everyone like it. I did leave out the almonds because I thought the kids might not like that part.
Here is the recipe:
Luncheon Chicken Salad

1 cup (6 oz) uncooked orzo
3 cups cubed cooked chicken
2 cups seedless red grapes, halved
1 cup chopped celery
¼ cup chopped onion
20 oz. can pineapple chunks, drained, reserving liquid
11 oz. can mandarin orange segments, drained
½ cup slivered almonds, toasted
Dressing: ¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup reserved pineapple liquid
1/3 cup vinegar
2 Tablespoons oil
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
Cook orzo to desired doneness as directed on package. Drain; rinse with cold water. In large bowl, combine cooked orzo and remaining salad ingredients except almonds. In jar with tight fitting lid, combine all dressing ingredients; shake well. Pour over salad; mix well. Cover; refrigerate until serving time. Garnish with toasted almonds.

Let me tell you who knew it was so time consuming to make these little sandwiches. Buttering, ham, and then cheese. The put it together and cut out the flower. So then there was all this excess bread ham and cheese. So I tried to cut my circles as high as I could so that I could still cut two small squares out of the same sandwich. I didn't want there to be more waste than necessary. It took almost two large loafs of bread and I hope everyone had as many as they wanted.

Okay so now to the cupcakes. I was most excited about this part of the tea party, hence why I chose a cupcake theme. My Mother bought this cupcake book awhile back and I asked her to send it with my sister when they came at Christmas. So I had carefully searched this book for just the right recipes I wanted to use. Let me just say it ended in disappointment. My first batch of cupcakes came out beautiful but the frosting didn't work. It just never set up like it was suppose to. Then the second type of cupcake I made they tell you to sift the flour and salt and set it aside and then never tell you to add it in. I didn't realize I hadn't added it in until I was just about to take them out of the oven. Then went completely flat then minute I pulled them out. So I mixed in halve of the flour for the second batch since these were mini cupcakes and they did turn out then. So by now I am a bit frustrated so I grabbed old Betty Crocker Chocolate cake mix so that we would have some decent cupcakes. I did use another frosting recipe for the chocolate cupcakes and it did turn out but lets just say I am unimpressed with the cupcake book. Poor Jouette, pink is her favorite color and we had to go with blue frosting since I forgot we were out of red and hadn't picked any up at the store. But in the end I think the kids were more than happy with the food.

Last but not least I did make raspberry lemonade for this kids instead of tea. I did have some herbal teas for the Mothers and Candice Leman brought a tea that she grew up on that you get in South Africa. She tells me it is very healthy and I quite enjoyed it myself. As I said before the actually party will have to be a to be continued.....

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Orange Pan Rolls

I made these yummy sweet rolls for breakfast and everyone loved them. I took a picture of them but I can't find where I saved it on the computer. I have included a link to the recipe and they do have a photo with the recipe. One thing to remember is that the recipe make 4 rolls, really only 4. I had to 4 times the recipe. Which makes about 12 rolls. If you get a chance try them I think you will like them. They are like a biscuit rolled in a sugar mixture. They are kind of messy to make and eat but you will love the taste.

Monday, January 26, 2009

This weeks menu really late

Okay so I forgot this weeks menu for any of you who care.

1. finger steaks

2. Pork Spring Rolls

3. Flantas

4. Lasanga

5. Herb Pork and Potatoes

6. Roasted Chicken

7. Potato Filled Crepes

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Place cards, party favors!

Well they are finished. I have been preparing for this weeks tea party for several weeks now and yesterday I finished these little candy filled tins that I plan to use at the place card for each persons seat but they will also be the party favor that each guest can take home.

Here is the view from the top with each persons name on them. I used the same paper that I made the invitations with so that they would coordinate. No two tins are alike. Each one is different but then so is each guest.

Here are the tins from the side view. I think that I am all ready for the party now. All I need is for the day to come so that I can set the tables and make the food.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Apple Pie Pastries

I made these yummy individual apple pies last night for Family Home Evening treat. They were pretty easy and they just fall apart in your mouth. The crust is more of a puff pastry than a pie crust. It calls for about double the butter that pie crust calls for but that is what makes them flaky and buttery like a crescent roll. I have included the link to the recipe. There picture is prettier than mine. I made mine like pockets so the could be picked up and eaten. Also I just used some apple pie filling I had frozen and didn't do the nice rings like the recipe called for. The pastry would also be yummy with whatever your families favorite pie filling is.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Project 365

Okay so I like to look at scrapbooking websites and it seems like everywhere I have gone in the last few days is talking about "Project 365" So even though I am a bit late I am going to start. This year is going to be a BIG year for our family. We will be moving from our beloved home in Oostrozebeke, Belgium to the United States for a few weeks and then on to somewhere in Beijing, China. There will be new schools, new homes, new friends new country's, and who know maybe even a new member. As I have read about project 365 I have felt that is will be a great way to remember 2009 and all the changes it holds in store for us.

Okay so what is "Project 365" From what I have read. You take your camera everywhere you go and take pictures. Then at the end of the day you choose a "picture of the day", one that most represent your day and your life. Like I said I am a bit behind. I have been taking lots of pictures so I am going to go back and look and see if I happen to have one for everyday but I don't know yet. But even if not I don't think it will be a bad thing if I have to go into 2010 by a week or two. The end of our year and beginning of the next might be full of surprises too! Then you have to remember to write a small journal entry to go with each photo. They say to let the kids snaps some and also let them say some things. From what I have read of those who have done this already they have learned how to use their camera better, how to take more interesting pictures, and they have really seen what was most important to them and their families. I am really looking forward to the many adventures in the next 12 months of my life and am excited to create a scrapbook so record it all.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Jan 16th menu

1. Cheeseburgers and fries (Zekaia wanted to have McDonald's at home so I recreated the happy meal he loves at home)
2. Giant Calzone
3. Creamy Vegetable Bow Tie Toss
4. Hard Shell Tacos
5. Santa Fe Chicken
6. White Bean Chicken Chili (trying this one tonight I hope it is good, will let you know)
7. Roasted Chicken with Parmesan Orzo and Roasted Root Vegetables

I made the Giant Calzone last night for dinner and I also wanted to include it's link for the recipe but it is also a subscriber only one. Really all you have to do is make a pizza crust then the filling was sausages, fresh mushrooms, onions, and green pepper. You roll out the dough into a big circle then spread some spaghetti sauce on it then add the topping then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Fold over to make one big halve circle then cut two slits in the top. Take and egg and beat it well and brush over the top. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes. I even made some into small individual pockets.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Creamy Vegetable Bow Tie Toss

I made this very yummy and very easy pasta dish last night for dinner. I would post the link to the Taste of Home Website but this recipe happens to be for Subscribers only so even I can't see it. But I bought the cookbook and that is how I now have it. So hopefully that is enough of a say from where the recipe came from to not break any copyrights to sharing this with you. I felt like it was pretty healthy since it is chuck full of delicious veggies and it was done in about 20 Min's. Can't bet that. The recipe makes a lot so I cut it in halve and still had plenty.

12 oz. uncooked Bow tie pasta, I used a different kind, as you can see
2 c. sliced fresh mushrooms
2. c cut fresh asparagus, I didn't not use this since it is out of season
2 medium sweet onions, chopped
2 medium carrots, sliced (now this I did use all of even when I halved it since my family loves carrots)
1 medium zucchini, halved and sliced
1 medium sweet yellow pepper, julienned
1/3 c. butter
2/3 c. chicken broth
1 c. sour cream
1/2 c. prepared ranch dressing
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese, Swiss would also taste nice in this I would think
1 T. dried parsley
1 T. dried basil
1/2 t. salt

Cook the pasta according to the package direction. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute veggies in butter for 5 minutes. Stir in broth; cook for 3 minutes or until veggies are crisp tender.
In a small bowl combine sour cream , ranch, cheese, parsley, basil, and salt; stir into skillet and heat through. Drain pasta and add to skillet and toss to coat.

I didn't add the pasta but let people put on as much as they wanted. I also sprinkled some cheese on top but not until after I had started eating it so it is not in the picture.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tea Time Find!

Okay so you saw the tea party invitations a few entry's back now here are the tea sets. I have invited 9 children and three women, the mothers of the children, to our little tea party on the 28th of this month. I had no tea sets so I decided to make a trip to the Kring Winkle not too far from my home to see if I could find one there.

Now since I have 14 guest and that is quite a lot and this the kring winkle, DI type store for you Americans, I knew I would have to mix and match.

This morning Jouette knew I would be going to look for the tea sets today and her ONLY request was that it was a tea set with pink roses on it, not asking too much. So I did my best to tell her that I would get the best I could find. Since the likelihood of finding her request I knew was slim to none.

Well to my great surprise and blessings from the Lord, He does want my little girl to be happy, I found this rose printed tea set with tea pot and milk pitcher for 4,95 euros! A thirteen piece set! I was also able to get a 9 piece set with some roses on it as well for 2, 95 euros and last but not least a 11 piece set in flowers for 1,95 euros. Making it a total of 8,75 euros. So I was very happy with the screaming deal I found.

I just hope Jouette is just as excited and I think she will be when she gets home from school today and see it. I figure for 8,75 even if a few get broken at the party it was well worth it.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Santa Fe Chicken

Well I am really sad that I forgot to take a picture of the dinner I made last night because it did look very nice and I had forgotten how yummy it was. It was called Santa Fe Chicken. I have attached the link so you can look on the Taste of Home Website and see the recipe and the photo they took. Mine didn't look quite the same since I prefer to cube my chicken to make the dish stretch better to feed everyone in my family, and I don't keep fresh cilantro on hand to garnish with. But this is a very fast meal to prepare and make. It can be prepared and ready to eat in 30 to 40 minutes and is satisfying and filling.

Sorry to those of you who use to get my emailed weekly recipe because this is one I emailed out a long time ago. But if you have not tried it yet you should!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Cupcake Cards

Well Jouette has this My Little Pony book that my Mother send for her birthday this last year and one of them is about a giant tea party. In the back of the book they have a few recipes for things you can make for a tea party. As she and I were reading the book a few month back Jouette wanted to have a tea party. Where we could dress up in fancy cloths and have a nice time. My Mom even made Jouette a really fancy dress to wear to the party and I will have Zekaia wear some slacks and a shirt and tie. I would have him wear his suit but it is dry clean only, so I think not. Thinking of the menu has been the hardest part. Mainly because I want it to be nice since I am inviting the Mother too. But I also need it to be food the kids will eat. Jouette picked the paper and the pink and chocolate will also be the colors I do some decorating in. Hopefully I will be able to find a few things to make it nice. I borrowed a cupcake book from my Mom and I want to make some fancy cupcakes for the dessert. Hopefully it will work out. I was going to post the menu for the party but I am having a hard time deciding what to make. So I guess that will just have to wait until I have the party and post some of the pictures I take at the party.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


1. Chicken Noodle Soup
2. German Sausages
3. Mandarin Chicken Salad
4. Hamburger Supper
5. Shepherds Pies
6. Broccoli Chicken Casserole
7. Sweet and Sour Chicken

Summer Home

I have found working with stickers to be very fun but also more difficult than I had expected. When I use just the stickers I had lots of left over designer paper and the cards seemed a bit too simple to me so I tried to use more of the designer paper and was a bit happier with the results.

This simply scrapin' pack called Summer Home. I was a bit torn with this kit. I really like the colors and the flowers but there were several stickers in the pack that really weren't card friendly. Guess I will just have to use those stickers on some scrapbook pages. All in all I am very happy with the card results.

I will say that I was very sad to hear that both the Pina Colada and the Summer Home will be retiring with the catalog so after making all there cards I will not be able to use them for my card class after all. Oh well, I guess I just have more cards made for me. When I decided to use the simply scrapin' packs for my card class this year I didn't even think that they would go out with this catalog since they use this years in colors but I guess they do. But I am sure there will be fun new ones to choose from out of the next catalog.

Sorry this last picture is upside down but I can't figure out how to rotate it here.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Christmas week dinners

1. Turkey sandwiches, (all those leftovers from Christmas Dinner)
2. Taco Sundays
3. Pork Chops with Mushroom Gravy
4. Roasted Chicken with Zucchini and Couscous
5. Lamb Roast
6. Chicken pot pie
7. Homemade Chicken nuggets and Fry's

I'm so Lucky