Happening Now

Running on the treadmill…again. I’ve had trouble focusing lately. But I’m back.

Eating lots of roasted red pepper hummus. I’m addicted. It’s bad.

Waiting, very impatiently I might add, for Spring to arrive.

Cleaning our house from top to bottom.

Wishing I could open the windows to let in the fresh air.

Planning a little birthday celebration this weekend. I turn 33 on Saturday.

Preparing for a family get-together on Sunday for Easter.

Taking lots of maternity photos lately. I know a lot of pregnant women!

Getting excited to plant a container garden as soon as it warms up.

Working on some new projects that I’ll be able to share soon.

Hoping the weather cooperates so we can grill out for the first time on Sunday.

Loving my Project Life album this year.

Wanting to repaint our living room gray, but it’s a big undertaking.

Crafting with the kids a lot lately. They love it and it’s fun for me too.

Anticipating The Walking Dead season finale on Sunday night. Yes.

I hope your week is going good so far! Today feels much better around here. After 4 days of gloomy skies, it’s finally sunny!

And it’s my birthday week!

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See you tomorrow!

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Project Life-Weeks Eight, Nine & Ten

As promised, because I’m sure you could hardly stand the suspense, I’m back with weeks eight, nine and ten of Project Life.

Here we go…

Week Eight

Our weeks have seemed pretty uneventful lately. I think we’re all in a funk over the weather. I mean, come on already Mother Nature, this girl needs some sunshine and green grass! Not to mention that the kiddos are going bananas being cooped up in the house for so long. Where are you Spring??!!

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I really like the half snow half soup photo and like the text added to it. The font is Bebas.DSC_0177

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Here I wanted to be able to add more photos of us building our terrarium, so I made a small collage using Photoshop and bits of photos of all of us. I really like the look.DSC_0181

I love writing directly on photos. I’ve tried to incorporate more of that in this album than previous albums. I get nervous doing it though because I worry that I’ll screw up. And I’m not very fond of my handwriting, but whatever.DSC_0182

Week Nine

I used my usual Seafoam kit and some Ali Edwards digital elements this week. Nothing really special.

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I like adding photos of the new recipes I make so that I can go back later when I’m having a hard time figuring out what to make. I’m also slowly building up our favorite recipes in order to put together our own family cookbook someday. I only document the ones we like.DSC_0186

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I love adding photos of everyday rituals; things that aren’t really “important”, but they are. You know what I mean? I want to remember that we loved going to Starbucks every Saturday morning and then for a drive with the kids. It won’t last forever, but it’s part of our weekends now and I love that.DSC_0189

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Week Ten

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Instead of using a tag to journal on this picture below, I did it using Photoshop. I don’t do this a lot because it feels too time consuming. I don’t mind adding a small amount of text to my photos, but I get bored doing the journaling this way.DSC_0195

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I like to add in small papers to remember certain things, so I added my ticket stub from the movies.DSC_0199

So, that does it! I’m all caught up. I’ll be finishing last week today and I’ll post it this weekend.

Ahhh, so glad that’s done!

Spring Fever-Cleaning Mode

This post is going in a different direction than most of the other posts, but this is what’s happening around my house right now. I have major Spring fever. The temps here aren’t feeling very Spring like yet and it’s killing me, but I still feel the need to whip our house into shape before the busy Summer season begins.

I’ve been browsing Pinterest looking for Spring cleaning tips and came across this list from FirstHomeLoveLife. I think it’s a pretty thorough list and I plan to cross off as many items as I can over the next month.

I actually got started yesterday and cleaned out our refrigerator. It’s now almost totally empty. Apparently it needed to be cleared out a long time ago because there were so many things that were so old that it’s embarrassing for me to admit the expiration date. Don’t judge me…I’m a busy mom.

So, anyway, it was such an awesome feeling once it was cleared out and cleaned. I love the feeling of having things as clean as they can be. Ok, so I’ll admit it. I’m a clean freak and a neat freak. At least I’ll never be a hoarder.

If you’re looking for a good list, click the link above and you’ll find it.

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Happy Spring!

 

 

Five Things-About Me

Because this is a new blog for me, even though I’ve been blogging for almost five years, I thought I would share a few things about me so that you can get to know me a little bit better.

1. I have some weird quirks. But one that I’ve had forever seriously determines whether or not I get a good nights sleep. Ok, here it is. I have to have a pillow at the end of the bed on my feet or I have a REALLY hard time falling asleep. I know! It’s totally weird! Well, it all started when I was pretty little. My mom didn’t want me to put the decorative pillows from my bed on the floor, so she would put them at the end of the bed. I got so used to having those pillows there that even when I didn’t have to have them there, I couldn’t sleep without one! I hold my mom responsible for my weirdness.

2. My absolute favorite food of all time is pizza. I could literally eat pizza every day of the week. I never get tired of it.

3. I’ve been scrapbooking for 17 years, so I guess that means I’ve been some what of a photographer that long too considering my scrapbooks are filled with all the pictures I’ve taken over the years. But I’m just finally turning my love for photography into my career. It sure took me long enough.

4. If I could have dinner with anyone dead or alive, I would choose my grandma in a heartbeat. She died four years ago after a long and devastating battle with Alzheimer’s. We were really close. I feel cheated that she didn’t get to see me get married or meet my kids. She did get to meet Jeremy, but was already really gone by that point, so she didn’t even know who he was or why he was hanging around.

5. My dream vacation, other than a trip to the Maldives, is a trip to Alaska. We thought about going for our honeymoon, but decided that it would be too expensive considering we just got engaged in Hawaii eight months before buying a house and paying for part of a wedding. I still wish we would’ve just gone for it! Maybe we’ll get there for our ten-year anniversary. Fingers crossed.

So, that’s just a few things to help you to get to know me better.

If you have any weird quirks, I would love to hear about them so that I don’t feel like the only weirdo.

It’s almost officially Spring! I’m so excited I could do a happy dance! Yay!

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I hope you have a great weekend!

 

 

Recipe Book-Taco Stuffed Pasta Shells

Today I have another Pinterest find to share with you. My favorite thing about Pinterest is finding new recipes. It gets so hard coming up with new ideas, especially food that the kids will eat.

Okay, so this may not be the healthiest meal ever (lots of cream cheese and regular cheese), but it was really good and it could probably easily be converted into a vegetarian recipe. Our kids went crazy over these, which was hilarious because Hudson is in the phase of absolutely NOT wanting to try anything new…at all. Somehow, I convinced him to take a bite of mine and he ate the rest of my plate and wanted more! It was awesome! Anyway, it’s a pretty simple recipe and it supposed to freeze well. I haven’t tried to freeze it yet, but next time I make it I think I’ll make double and give it a whirl.

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Taco Stuffed Pasta Shells

original recipe can be found at Inspired Ginger

Ingredients

1 lb. ground beef or turkey (I used turkey to make it a little lighter)
1/4 cup taco seasoning, 1 envelope
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
12 Jumbo Pasta shells, cooked according to package instructions
1 cup salsa
1 cup taco sauce
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Jack cheese

optional toppings:

1 1/2 cup crushed tortilla chips
1 cup sour cream
3 green onions, chopped
sliced olives
guacamole
sliced avocados
tomatoes

Instructions

In a skillet brown meat over medium heat. Add taco seasoning and mix to combine. Add cubed cream cheese, cover and simmer so cream cheese can melt. Remove from heat and cool.

Fill cooked shells with about 1-2 T. of meat mixture. In a 9×13 glass baking dish pour salsa to coat the bottom of dish. Place filled taco shells on top then add taco sauce. Cover and bake @ 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, uncover, and sprinkle cheese on top, return to oven for another 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with sour cream, and toppings of your choice.

I ended up having to use a smaller baking dish; 8×8 in order for the shells to stand up.

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I only added the salsa to half of the shells before baking because we only had a hot salsa, much too hot for the kids. But after we were done eating Jeremy said he liked the shells without the salsa better anyway. He liked being able to add it after along with the rest of his toppings. So, next time I don’t plan on adding the salsa.

I thought this recipe would be heartier than it actually was, and that was a pleasant surprise. Usually I save my heartier recipes for Fall and Winter, but I think this one would work all year round.

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If you end up trying it, be sure to stop by and let me know and be sure to let Ginger over at Inspired Ginger know you liked it too!

Next time, I also plan to add tomatoes and avocados to ours! Oh yeah!

I love trying new recipes, so if you have a favorite one I love to hear it! Feel free to share in the comments!

Enjoy!

Project Life-Weeks Six & Seven

Today it’s weeks six and seven of Project Life. I’m starting to get into the groove of it again and I’m loving it!

Week Six

For some reason the picture of the first page is missing, so you can only see half of it on the left hand side. But you get the gist.

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This is one of my favorite photos of Harper. It’s exactly how she looks most of the time because she’s still growing out her bangs and they never stay out of her face no matter how hard I try!

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I also included a photo of The Walking Dead cast that I printed out because the season started up again and we were so excited. I like to include elements like this so that some day down the road we can look back and remember the things that we were loving at the time.DSC_0167

I used some of Ali Edwards digital elements this week as always.DSC_0168

Week Seven

This was the week of Valentine’s Day, so I used more hearts and pink than usual. We also took a trip up to Sioux Falls to visit my parents and see my sister’s family. The kids love trips to Grandma and Grandpa’s house.

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I used Ali’s digital elements here and another technique that I love to incorporate is writing on the actual photos. I used an American Crafts slick writer in black.DSC_0171

I added some photos that I took with my Instax mini while we were at the zoo. I love these little pictures and try to remember to use that camera.DSC_0172

The picture of Jeremy and I is actually a post from Facebook that he posted and I simply took a screen shot of it on my phone and then printed out as a 4×6. I added a couple of strips of washi tape to embellish it and used my slick writer to write around the photo.DSC_0173

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I’m basically all caught up now. I have a little bit of journaling to do for weeks eight and nine and then I’ll get those posted later this week. From then on, it will be real-time updates! Yay! I hate getting caught up, but am glad that I’m not too far behind.

As always, if you have questions about Project Life or would like to learn more about it, check out http://www.beckyhiggins.com/.

 

Recipe Book-Chicken Tortilla Soup

I love trying new recipes and get really excited when they turn out to be good. I came across this recipe on Pinterest a few weeks ago and was eager to give it a try. I have to admit, I’m not really a soup person. Don’t get me wrong, I like soup, but I don’t often crave soup. Well, ever since I made this soup, I’ve been craving it. It’s that good!

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

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**original recipe can be found at Baked By Rachel**

Ingredients
1lb chicken breast, trimmed
15oz can sweet whole corn kernels, drained
15oz can diced tomatoes, drained
5C chicken stock
3/4C onion, chopped
3/4C green pepper, chopped
1 serrano pepper, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp salt, divided
1 tsp ground pepper, divided
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Seasoned tortilla strips

Directions
To your slow cooker add first 9 ingredients plus 1 tsp salt and 3/4 tsp ground pepper. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.

Prior to serving, remove chicken breasts. Transfer chicken to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment for easy shredding. Alternately you may shred chicken by hand. Season chicken with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Return shredded seasoned chicken to slow cooker bowl. Stir gently.

If serving immediately, divide among bowls. Top off with a generous helping of shredded cheese and seasoned tortilla strips. Soup may be stored in the fridge for up to several days. If freezing, label containers well with soup name and date.

 

Here it is cooking in the slow cooker. This was taken before I shredded the chicken.

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This soup turned out so good! It tasted very fresh and had great flavor. Plus, it was simple to throw together.

*I made two changes to the recipe. I used a jalapeno pepper instead of a Serrano pepper because the grocery store didn’t have any Serrano at the time. Next time I would like to use a Serrano to compare the flavor. I also ended up omitting the corn for two reasons; one, I didn’t have any on hand, and two, I don’t really like corn in soup for some reason. But if you like corn in your soup, go for it!

*We also added crushed tortilla chips instead of tortilla strips because that’s what we had.

I’ll definitely be making this at least one more time before the weather warms up. I have a complex about not being able to eat soup in the summer. Yes, that’s right; I’m weird.

If you end up trying the recipe, be sure to stop by Rachel’s blog to let her know how much you like it!

Tashia

P.S. I wish the photos were better, but I ended up taking them with my iPhone and it was almost dark out, so the lighting is less than ideal.

Project Life-Week Five

I’m pretty much completely caught up with my Porject Life, so today I’m sharing week five and I’ll share weeks six and seven in the next few days until I’m ready to share my current weeks.

Highlights of the week included me going to the doctor to finally figure out what was going on with my ear (it had been plugged for five days), a small snow storm, Harper’s first time getting her toe nails painted and a visit from my mom and dad.

This week I used a lot of Ali Edwards digital overlays which can be bought at Designer Digitals. They’re an easy way to add a little interest to my photos.
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I love this picture of the kids snuggling Jeremy.
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We got some snow on Thursday. They predicted a major blizzard, but it wasn’t really too bad. I used a button badge from EvaliciousDSC_0156

I used some American Crafts thickers here.
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And another one of Ali’s overlays on the photo of my food at dinner.
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I, of course, am still enjoying this project so much.

If you’re confused about Project Life I encourage you to check out www.beckyhiggins.com.

Thanks for stopping by! See you soon!

Tashia

A Maternity Shoot

I did a small maternity shoot a week ago and am really happy with how the photos turned out. I’m still learning the art of post processing and my own style, so be kind. However, I really like the light and she looked beautiful. Here are just a few of the shots I took.

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Thanks for being my muse Abbie!

Happy March Everyone! March is very busy for us, so I’m sure I’ll have lots to share.

Tashia