Tasty Tuesday (double dose)- Snickerdoodle Bars

This is the second part of the Double Dose Tasty Tuesday! I had to make it in two different posts, I can’t quite figure out the pictures on this gypsy machine yet, but I’m sure I’ll get it down after some time!

Enjoy everyone! ūüôā

Snickerdoodle Bars

Ingredients 

2 1/3 cup flour

1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup butter or margarine, soft

1 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

Cinnamon Filling 

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar

1-3 tablespoons milk

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Directions

1. Heat oven to 350. Spray or grease your pan for the bars, 13×9 pan. In a small bowl combine flour, baking powder, and salt; you can set this aside for now. The bowl just needs to be big enough to these ingredients in there.

2. In a bigger bowl (I just used the bowl to my KitchenAid mixer) beat butter until it becomes creamy. Then beat in the sugar, and brown sugar. Beat the eggs in one at a time, along with the vanilla. Beat the dry ingredients in ,with the mixer on low-speed, slowly until it is mixed well.

3. Spoon half the batter into the pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly over the batter.

4. Spoon the remaining batter into dollop size spoonfuls on top of the cinnamon-sugar mixture.

5. Bake 20-25 minutes or until it is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely, it took about an hour.

6. In a small bowl mix the glaze until it is smooth and can be drizzled. Drizzle over the bars, and enjoy!

I’ve been trying to find some other things I want to bake, and I’ve got my eyes on some pretty cool stuff! Fall is definitely in the air, and I love it! Let baking season begin…afterall I am becoming quite the…..BAKER! hahahaha ūüėČ Happy Tuesday Ya’ll!

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Tasty Tuesday (double dose)- Cowboy Casserole

This past Sunday I decided to try something different in the kitchen, and it was a hit, oh and guess what? I used beef! (PS-The second part of this double dose is in another post)

The Cowboy Casserole is a spin on the ordinary and sometimes {dull} tater tot casserole.

Ingredients 

1 lb ground beef

8 ounces of frozen corn, or can of corn

2/3 cup cream of chicken soup, undiluted

Shredded cheese ( I don’t measure my cheese because I love it soo much)

1/3 cup milk

2 tablespoons sour cream (this can be left out for those of you who don’t like sour cream)

3/4 teaspoon onion powder

Pepper to taste

French Fries (I didn’t measure the french fries either, I just did what felt and looked right!)

Directions

1. In large skillet brown meat to where it is no longer pink. Then add the corn, soup, cheese, milk, sour cream, onion powder and pepper. Continue to cook on the stove until it is all mixed together.

2. Layer a cooking dish (depending on how much your making depends on the size of dish) with french fries. Layer the fries with the beef mixture, then top with more fries and cheese. Place in the oven uncovered at 375 for 20-25 mintues or until it gets bubbly.


I really enjoyed making this. Andrew and his friend Chase went out looking for deer all day and when they got home they dug right in. They loved it, needless to say this will remain on the Baker menu. When I get to cooking and baking in the kitchen its a relaxing fun time for me. I hope you all enjoy these recipes as much as we did!

“YYYYYYEEEEEEE—HHHHAAAWWWWWW

Tasty Tuesday- Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

I know everyone loves chocolate chip cookies….and I know that (most) people like cream cheese…so why not put these two great things together? After being hounded and hounded at work by all my usual coffee drinkers I decided it was time to bake them something they’d really enjoy. I gave my boss 3 choices and he chose this awesome recipe!¬†

I cannot even begin to explain how easy this recipe is. First of all it only calls for 5 ingredients, and second of all once you get them in the oven it goes really fast. 
Ingredients
1 can seamless crescent rolls
1 (8oz) pkg cream cheese, room temp
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (I didn’t use mini I just used regular)
Directions
In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
Unroll the crescent roll. Stretch out the dough into a rectangle. (If you can’t find the seamless crescent dough then just make sure you pinch the seams together well.) I just put it on a cutting board so that way it didn’t stick to the counter top and it worked really well!¬†
Spread the cream cheese mixture over the top of the crescent dough Рleave a gap at the edge of about 1/2 inch. Sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. Roll the crescent roll up tightly and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill at least 2 hours, or overnight (overnight works best!)
Once chilled – preheat oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Slice the cookie log (I used a sharp knife) into about 1/4 inch slices. Bake on prepared sheet for 10 Р15 minutes, until golden brown.
Let cool on sheet for about 5 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely.

I really enjoyed making this and the farmers and my coworkers really enjoyed eating them! If you have time to warm them up before you eat them I would recommend it. They were so good right out of the oven! I hope you all try this recipe and really like it, it would make a good recipe with anything really. I want to try it next with some strawberry jam! 

** Today is a special day in America, please take this time to remember all those who were part of 9-11, and say a prayer for everyone involved!**

Tasty Tuesday- Chicken Ranch Fajitas

I’ve been a beast in the kitchen lately, and it’s been great! I love being able to have time to cook and bake in the kitchen. Before the wedding (post still to come) we were eating like college students again, and it was starting to show! Here is a new recipe that I tried and it was loved by myself and my hubby.

There is always a decision to be made at our household that sometimes leaves the other one not so happy (until they taste the dish)…Chicken, or beef? Well I like chicken..a lot, Andrew likes beef..a lot; but on this particular night, I won!

Chicken Ranch Fajita Wraps

ingredients

2 skinless chicken breasts (more if cooking for a bigger crowd) 

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Nonstick cooking spray

1 small red, yellow, or green sweet pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips (we used fresh from the garden peppers)

2 tablespoons ranch salad dressing

2 tortillas (any kind you want)-warmed

1/2 cup Easy Fresh Salsa*

1/3 cup mexican style cheese

directions

1.Cut breasts into strips or whatever size you’d like them to be for your fajitas. Sprinkle with chili powder and garlic powder. Coat a medium nonstick skillet with nonstick spray; heat over medium-high heat. Cook chicken and sweet pepper strips in hot skillet over medium heat for 4 to 6 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink and pepper strips are tender. Remove pan from heat and then coat with the salad dressing. I added a little more salad dressing.

2.Divide the chicken and pepper mixture between warmed tortillas. Top with Easy Fresh Salsa and cheese. Roll up; cut in half if you’d like.

Chicken and peppers in skillet coated with chili powder and garlic!

Fresh Salsa

ingredients
2 seeded and chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/4 cup chopped yellow or green sweet pepper
2 Р3 teaspoons snipped fresh cilantro
1/2  teaspoon minced garlic
1/8 teaspoon salt
Dash black pepperFew drops bottled hot pepper sauce

directions (Fresh Salsa)

In a medium bowl combine tomatoes, red onion (we used fresh sweet onions from the garden), pepper, cilantro, garlic, salt, black pepper, and, if desired, a few drops bottled hot pepper sauce. Serve immediately or cover and chill for up to 3 days. Stir before serving. Makes 1 2/3 cups.

Fresh Salsa (delicious!)

We cooked up some Rice a Roni with the fajitas (looked like burritos) and it was so delicious. I’d like to say that I was the one who won the chicken and beef battle but in the end, Andrew was very pleased and so was I, so I guess you could say we both won!

Andrew did mention he might of liked it with sour cream or some more ranch to dip it in (which I offered to get but he said no) He also used the salsa with tortilla chips and he really enjoyed that. Overall this was a fantastic recipe and will be used again!

YUMO!!!

I’ve learned through my cooking that you won’t always follow the recipe exact, and I hardly ever follow a recipe exactly how it says. I like to add my own things and experiment, and I have to say, I’ve gotten pretty good at it. Stay tuned next Tuesday for “Tasty Tuesday”¬†and see what else I come up with! Hope you all decide to try it out and enjoy! Bon appetit!!

‚ÄúThe only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.‚Ä̬†
Julia Child

Summer Lovin Havin Some Fun

Summer 2012….YOLO!¬†

This summer was filled with new {great}  friendships, lots of traveling, and a ton of memories all between and during; graduations, several weddings, bridal showers, bachelorette parties, and harvest. Our summer really got in full swing on the weekend of May 19. Some of my closest friends gave me an amazing bridal shower, filled with family and friends. It was so great to have everyone together in one place. Chelsea and Kolbie FINALLY came to Leoti, and I had both of my families together as well. The shower was beautiful, and everything I could have wanted.

The next weekend we took a trip to San Isabel, Colorado on Memorial weekend. The Porters have a cabin up there and it was the first time Amber and I would be making the trip with our crazy men, Bryer, Stacy and Todd and MaryBeth. We were really excited, and the boys were just as excited to take us. Our plans were to relax, fish, and just have a good time. We went to the Bishop Castle, which was so crazy, and we went on a hike to this beautiful waterfall (and it took us a long time to get there!) It was an awesome weekend, and new friendships were formed and made very special on this trip!

This summer was the summer of LOVE! There were so many weddings, it was crazy, and bachelorette parties! We traveled to Hays America for Aubreys bachelorette party, and like you’ll hear me a say a million times… me and my friends have so much fun together it should be illegal! It was a fiesta style party and we got to wear sombreros, and we hit the town of Hays. After some rabbit chasing, and motorcycle riding..we decided the night needed to come to an end..I’d say it was a successful fiesta! ¬†One of the weddings we attended was Cody and Aubreys, really good friends of ours. It was a beautiful wedding (with a beautiful bride) ¬†and of course….it was a blast! ¬†With wedding bells, comes the bachelorette party! Let me tell you, me and my friends know how to have a good time, and Devon threw an awesome party! All the girls from Leoti packed in the car and headed to Manhattan and after an interesting drive to Manhattan, we finally made it and that’s when the fun really started. The weekend was filled with lots of laughs, and lots of memories! It was a blast having everyone, all my friends from college, and all my friends from Leoti, in one place to have a really good time.

My sister got to come stay with us during harvest and that was awesome. I love my sisters more than anything in this world, and it was great to have her here for over a month. She kept the house cleaned (for the most part) and always brought a smile to my face when I needed it after those long hours at work. Harvest was interesting because I had never experienced it in this way before. The hours were long, and I got to meet all sorts of people from all over the US. We ran out of room in the bins and had to start piling on the ground and the pile was really cool. The guys took me, Vallie and Lindsay to the top of the elevator and it was breathtaking. I love working at Coop and all the people I get to see everyday our great!

The fourth of July was a good time. Most of the time the town of Leoti is in full swing harvest, but with harvest starting early this year everyone was able to celebrate. We went to Porters for a big BBQ and go to celebrate with our good friends. My favorite kiddos were there, and it was a lot of fun getting to play with sparklers, and eat cupcakes with them!

We took a trip to the lake a couple of times, and one of the trips was all girls. Let’s just say that we had an outrageous time, and I couldn’t ask for more fun of friends. It was an awesome time. We went to the marina where we took part in karaoke¬†night. I decided to pull out my rap voice and rapped “I Like Big Butts” and it was definitely a hit. One thing I know is without these girls I wouldn’t laugh as hard as a I did this weekend! It was a very fun time!

During the summer Andrew and I played softball in Tribune. We got to play with Amber and Nate and it was a lot of fun! Amber and I also played golf on Tuesday nights (when I wasn’t busy with harvest or wedding planning). Let me tell you, I am not good at golf by any means, but we got better as the summer progressed. It was an all women’s league and we ended up getting 4th from last! We are hoping to get a little better by next year. It’s hard to go back and put the summer into words. So much happened and I wish I could just write down every single moment, but that would seriously take 3 months for me to do. We were very busy between our extracirricular activities, weddings, parties, and wedding planning. Wedding planning took up all of our “free” minutes and our “free” money, but it was worth every minute of planning. You’ll all hear a lot more about the wedding in my next couple of posts!

Without my friends and family this summer would have been really boring. Although I like to have fun and carried away sometimes, I never forget how ¬†incredibly blessed I am to have such wonderful people in my life. ¬†God has been present in every part of my life, and I’ve recently realized it more than I had before. He has brought me to this wonderful town, with wonderful people and has started me on a incredible journey with my husband. I am so thankful!

“I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.”¬†Psalm 16:8

The pictures in my slideshow are of the summer and I will be putting more in that album as I get them uploaded!

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A Journey…A Lesson

This is my year in a nutshell…

On May 14, 2011 I was going to be starting a whole new chapter in my life. I ¬†graduated from Kansas State University and would be moving to Marienthal, Kansas. At first I was very nervous about the move, would I make friends? Would I fit in? Would I find a job…but little did I know what the big guy had in store for me…a whirlwind of a year!

Our summer began with a dirty house, a slew of boxes, confused animals, and for me, unfamiliar faces. I was eager, and scared. After many days of painting, cleaning and unpacking; our unfamiliar house, became a cozy home. I began my new job in Scott City, and Andrew started his full-time job at 21st Century-John Deere. ¬†In July I was named head girls basketball coach at Wichita County High school, I couldn’t have been more excited! I love the game of basketball and I love coaching it was perfect for me, but something was missing. I wasn’t happy at my job, and I was missing my friends and family so much back in Manhattan. There were some weekends spent with my girls at Lake Trenton, and lots of good times in Manhattan, which were my favorite. Although it was always hard to leave! I wasn’t finding my groove in Leoti, and I wasn’t sure if I was ever going to. I started getting into new things in the community and became friends with Simone. She helped me get introduced to other people and we hit it off right away. She was new to the community as well, and we were counting on each other (secretly I think) to make it in Leoti. I was also introduced to Audra through Devon, and although Audra and I had hung out before she also took me under her wing and we became good friends. Without these girls, my first year in Leoti would have been awful. I also had a wonderful family to help me through everything and to give me advice. The Baker family (now my family) supported Andrew and I in every decision that we made. ¬†Basketball season was rough and it had a lot of ups and downs…but I seemed to survive, and it was a great way for me to grow and learn.

On October 17, 2011 my world was turned upside down…literally. I got in a really bad car accident and rolled my jeep and totaled it. Luckily I walked away with only a few bumps and stratches..oh and a totaled vehicle. Even thought I wasn’t injured terribly it opened my eyes and made me realize how lucky I was. I was taking too much for granted in my life. Two days before this I also stopped working at my job, things were not looking good for me. I was sad and felt lonely, once again. After some time of feeling sorry for myself, and being unmotivated I found a new car which I love, and got a new job…and WE GOT ENGAGED! I couldn’t have been happier…I was on cloud 9. On Christmas morning the love of my life asked me to be his wife!

“But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble.” Psalm 59:16

After a great Christmas and a killer New Years Eve party, the wedding planning had to begin, and with that came money and stress. Basketball season came to an end, and more of my time was taken up by wedding planning! I was blessed to complete my adventure to become Catholic and it was the best decision I ever made! I met an amazing woman through the process and she will forever be a friend of mine and a mentor!  On May 21 I started a job that I love so much! Working at the Coop is one of the best jobs ever. I get to talk with farmers all day and hear stories about all sorts of things, and its great! Harvest was an interesting time for me coming from someone who knew nothing (except what my fiancée taught me)! Over all it went really smoothly and I know the farmers were pleased with my efficiency and smile! One of the cool things about working at the elevator is the view from the top, especially of the wheat pile!

Overall the last year (excluding summer, to come in a different post) has been a roller coaster! At this point I couldn’t be happier and I love my life in Wichita County, Kansas. I’ve met some amazing people and some of my best friends through this journey. It’s hard to be away from my family, but God has led me here, and for that I am grateful!

“And God said, ‚ÄúBehold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.” Genesis 1:29

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
With your head full of brains,
And your shoes full of feet,
You’re too smart to go down a not-so-good-street.
Out there things can happen, and frequently do,
To people as brainy and footsy as you.
And when things start to happen, don’t worry, don’t stew.
Just go right along, you’ll start happening too! -Dr. Seuss

Friends don’t worry..not all my posts will be this long! ūüėČ

Hello world!

I’m going to start this new thing called blogging. This is for my family and friends that I don’t get to talk to all that often, and I thought this would be a fun way to express myself! I’ll be posting recipes, crafts, ideas, and about random things! I’ve heard a lot of things about blogging, and thought that I’d give it a try! Thanks for reading all ūüôā