Tasty Tuesday – Burbon Pecan Pie

This pie isn’t exactly easy, but it;s not super hard either. It’s what I’m usually asked to bring for Thanksgiving. Bring along the rest of the bottle of bourbon to spike the eggnog.

Also, Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

Bourbon Pecan Pie

You need:

1 1/2 cup brown sugar (lightly packed)
4 tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
3 eggs
2 cups pecan halves or pieces
A shot of bourbon (I use the good stuff)                             1 teaspoon vanilla                                                   1 9-inch unbaked pie shell

Directions:

Pre-heat the oven to 350. Beat the eggs, set aside.

In a mixing bowl combine sugar and melted butter.

Add corn syrup, vanilla, bourbon, and eggs. Mix well.

Add all the pecans but 1/4 cup. Mix well.

Place pie shell on cookie sheet. Fill. Decorate with remaining pecans. Place pie, cookie sheet and all, in oven.

Bake for 10 min at 350. Turn oven down to 325 and bake for 45 min. (oven times are approximate and can vary depending on your oven.)

Cool and enjoy!

Thoughts on a Thursday…Kids and Gratitude

I realize I do far less actual blogging and far more reviewing, which was never really my intention when I started this blog.

But, the holiday season does give me a lot to talk about.

Can you believe it’s nearly Thanksgiving?

I know I have a lot to be thankful for this year. What about you?

This is the perfect time to take a moment before the blitz of gifts and parties and talk to your kids about gratitude–and find out what they’re thankful for (which can often be both enlightening and amusing.) It’s  a way to remind them that the holidays are about more than parties and presents (though who doesn’t like those?). It’s about family, and friends, and helping people (though we can do these things all year, too, it doesn’t just have to be this time of year.)

Crafts

Have your kids made hand turkeys with either crayons or paint for the Thanksgiving Table, but on each feather write something they’re thankful for–encourage them to be both silly and serious.

Activities

For that usual canned goods drive, instead of cleaning the nearly expired things out of the cabinet, take the kids with you to the store, and have them each choose something themselves. Take a moment to talk about how some people don’t have food and what makes a balanced meal.

Volunteering

One really good way to teach older children about gratitude is for them to experience it. If you don’t want to help feed the less fortunate on Thanksgiving, perhaps you might take them to help assemble food baskets at your local church, school, food pantry, or community center. If you live in Los Angeles, Big Sunday is having a huge assemble-a-thon, the day before Thanksgiving from 9-12, though your kids may be in school that day.

What are your favorite ways to gently teach children about being thankful?

 

Tasty Tuesday: Beef and noodles with gravy (Easy Beef Stroganoff)

Beef and noodles with gravy (Easy Beef Stroganoff) 

You need:

½ box bow tie noodles

½ lb beef, diced

1 small can mushrooms (drained)

½ c sour cream

1 brown gravy mix

 

Directions:

1)      Put noodles on to cook

2)      Brown meat, drain

3)      Prepare gravy using about ¼ c water less than directed.

4)      Add beef and gravy to pan, add mushrooms, cook until thick.

5)      Drain noodles

6)      Just before serving, stir sour cream into gravy-meat mixture, serve over noodles

 

November PopSugar Must Haves Box Review

PopSugar is a lifestyle box, filled with beauty, home, and style products. It’s $40 a month, which places it on the spendier scheme of boxes (at least for me.) They also periodically have $100+ special edition boxes, but I haven’t bought any of these.

I’m finding in my quest for the perfect subscription box, that the more I spend, the more I expect and the pickier I get. It might not be right, but it’s who I am.

The theme of the November Box seemed to be “Let the Festivities Begin.” I have to say, this was a great box. It also was the box a lot of people were hoping for last month, with winter-themed goodies, so I’m glad we finally got them!

The box:

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The Items:

Michael Stars Wrap — this is a big, soft shawl/scarf, perfect for keeping cosy. I do with the black and grey print was on both sides. A more festive color would have been nice, but I’m very glad that we got a scarf! Did I mention it’s soft?

Illume Candle — The soy candle came in two scents “naughty” and “nice” which I thought was cute and perfect for this box. I got “naughty” which was spicy, but not musky/sensual, which was also nice, making it quite festive. They’re also very nice sized.

Land’s End Wine Tote — I was excited about this. It’s super cute and perfect for bringing wine to parties (or it would make a nice gift with a bottle of wine in it for a wine lover.) I got red, like in the picture, I’m not sure if there are variations.

Maison de Monaco Strawberry & Blackcurrant Cream Preserves — Hand-cooked in small batches, I found this jam to be delicious. Yum. Yum.

The Soap & Paper Factory Roland Pine Soap — It smells very manly and wintery. I love how the wrapper encourages you to conserve by not showering alone.

Absolute Nail Polish Remover Pads — I got lavender and this smells amazing for it being polish remover. It’s oil-based so it’s kind of weird, but I love how it’s this tiny little container filled with wipes, which makes it great for travel.

Barefruit Crunchy Sea Salt Caramel Apple Chips — These were tasty, if a little tough to chew.

Canvas Pop $30 coupon — apparently Canvas Pop is one of those services where you can print a photo on canvas. This is the only thing in the box I don’t think I’ll use/have a use for.

The Verdict: After feeling “meh” about last month’s box, I am happy with this box. I hope they keep it up! Also, I was very impressed by their customer service. That means a lot to me, especially in deciding which boxes to continue.

November Birchbox Review!

I’m pretty new to Birchbox. But out of everything I’ve tried so far, I think Birchbox really gives you the bang for your buck — or rather $10. At $10 a month Birchbox is a sample service that each month sends you a box of samples and full size beauty and lifestyle products to try. Unlike most subscription boxes, where everyone gets pretty much the same thing, Birchbox sends out quite a few variations (like 50) each month.  You also get to create a profile which helps to shape your box.

This month’s theme was “more good.”

This is what I got!

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Ayres Midnight Tango Body Butter– It’s a cute little pot of body butter, perfect for traveling.

Eyeko Black Magic Mascara — this was a very generous tube, I can’t wait to try it. I don’t wear much makeup, but I do sometimes wear mascara.

Folle de Joie Perfume–I’m not much of a perfume person but this smells nice, also, it’s a nice little sample tube with the spray, not the kind you have to fumble with the top of.

Wei Purifying Mud Mask–The little pod is about the size of one of those coffee k-cups. Even though they’re meant to be convienent”single serve” containers, there’s enough face mask for two uses, just keep it in a baggie because  it’s not resealable. It feels nicer as it dries than most mud masks I’ve tried, but I didn’t notice anything remarkable.

Wei Buffing Beads — This is a little foil pack. Like the mud mask, they’re sold this way to make it convenient. One thing I like about this is that you mix it with your normal cleanser. The foil pack is nice to throw in a travel bag, but it seems wasteful for everyday use.

Fatty Sundays Mint Chocolate Covered Pretzel — YUM. I am not a huge chocolate covered pretzel fan, but this was delicious. I just wish they would have sent me more than one tiny pretzel.

The Verdict:  I was really happy with this month’s birchbox. I didn’t get the Liz Earle Cloths (again), the LM compact, or a full sized candy bar, but I will use everything I got and I might just have t buy some of those pretzels.

If you’re looking to get yourself a treat this Christmas I do recommend Birchbox, because it is just $10 and it’s really fun. Also, they have a great points system where you can earn credits to buy free stuff by writing reviews and such.

 

 

Tasty Tuesday — Easy Shrimp Pasta Dinner

Easy  Shrimp Pasta Dinner

This is one of my go-to dinners for those nights when I come home from work tired.

You need:

1/3-1/2 lb frozen shrimp (small-medium)

1 c uncooked or frozen broccoli florets (the smaller the better)

½ box angelhair pasta

½ c alfredo sauce (from a jar or packet or whatever)

Directions:

1)      Put on water to boil

2)      Add pasta, broccoli, and shrimp all at the same time

3)      Cook pasta is done and broccoli is al dente

4)      Drain

5)      Toss with just enough alfredo sauce to coat

6)      Serve with garlic toast

Tasty Tuesday — Not-So-Sloppy Joes

This is one of Bunny’s favorites. It’s fast and easy, also, these re-heat well.  They also make fun finger foods.

No-So-Sloppy Joes

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You’ll need:

1/2 lb ground beef

1/2 can sloppy joe sauce

1 package refrigerator biscuits

shredded cheese

 

Directions:

1) Preheat oven to heat on biscuit can

2) Brown and drain ground meat

3) Mix cooked meat with sauce (use more or less sauce to taste)

4) Grease muffin tin

5) Stretch biscuit to fit muffin tin and create a pocket to be filled

6) Fill each biscuit with meat and sauce (the larger biscuit, like “Grands” will take more filling than the small biscuit. Also, depending on how much filling you like, you may need more or less meat to fill all the biscuits, also, you can adjust the amount of filling and biscuits for your family and only make a few at a time.)

7) Sprinkle with grated cheese (if desired)

8) Cook according to directions!