Friday, March 9, 2012

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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

New Blog Coming Soon.

The Exquisite Mommy has a new blog coming. Yep... I am moving. So please stay tuned. I hope you all continue to follow me. I have a lot of new things, ideas, posts, etc.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Try New Recipes!! Step Out of The Box

Hi Exquisite Readers. I love to cook!! And although I am not an Iron Chef, I do like to try new recipes. I am a Food Network fanatic and have tried a lot of new menu items from different chefs on their network. I also like to take the recipes I am familiar with and find ways to improve them. At other times, I come up with my own, creative meals. I bore easily. In addition, I do find recipes online. Site I follow include All Recipes, Food Network, and Simple Recipes.  
Here is a recipe I can up with. The items I prepared were garlic mashed potatoes, breaded pork chops, gravy, spinach, and dinner rolls. The great thing about making up new recipes is that you can call it what you want and add what you want. I this corn flake breaded pork chops.

Now lets start with the gravy!!!

On Medium Heat
1 pack of McCormick onion gravy, 1 1/2 cup of water, and sift 1/2 cup of all purpose flour.
I added 3 large Shitake mushrooms, 1/2 cup of diced red onions, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Keep sifting. The gravy will thicken because of the flour. Cook about 15mins.

This is what it should look like when finished
To make the mashed potatoes
On Medium Heat
1 pack of Idahoan Roasted Garlic & Parmesan Potatoes, 1/2 carnation milk,
2 teaspoons of Guacamole Mix (It adds a little twang)
1 1/2 cups of shredded extra sharp cheddar

Cook for 15 minutes. Stir, as potatoes will thicken. 

This is what it should look like when finished
  Now, time to bread the pork chops.

Preheat heat oven to 375 degrees
Makes 5 pork chops (not thick)
Use a non stick pan (for baking) or cover pan with foil and add 1 teaspoon of (evoo) extra virgin olive oil and rub into the pan. 

In a 2nd pan, crush 4 cups of crushed corn flakes, 1 teaspoon of Morton season salt, 1 pack of Kraft Parmesan Tuscan Herbs, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, and a pinch of pepper (I don't use a lot of pepper because of my little girls). Take your pork chop and place it on top of your mixture and press down. Now flip it over and repeat to ensure the flakes stick. Place onto the non stick or foil covered pan. Sprinkle your mixture from pan 1 on the top of your pork chops and place in the oven for 30 mins on the bottom rack. Now, place the  pan on the top rack and put oven on broil for 2 minutes.This will add a crunch and brown the the flakes. Monitor this as it can burn quickly. Take out  and let cool.

Side Items
The rolls will be frozen, so place in oven for about 10 minutes on 350 degrees. Cook frozen spinach on stove for 10 minutes covered on medium and season with a pinch of salt.

The Finished Product

You can find these products at your local grocer. I shopped at Kroger. Please leave me a comment about what you think, any tips, or ideas you have. 

Happy Eating!!!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What'll Ya Have? What'll Ya Have?

I love spending time with my family. For this outing we went to the infamous Varsity fast food joint in the GREAT City of Atlanta, Georgia. If you are ever in town, go and check it out. But you have to answer back with "What'll Ya Have" to order.



We ate up the food before pics were taken.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Waffle A La Mode

I have been craving this dessert for a few days. I haven't had it or made it in about 3 or 4 years.

So I made it tonight....

Ingredients Included:

Mix water and Krusteaz Buttermilk mix in a bowl together. Per 1 cup of mix, add  2/3 cups of water. I also cracked 3 fresh pecans, crushed them, and added them to my Krusteaz Buttermilk waffle mix for an extra crunch. I then poured the mix onto my Black & Decker Belgian Waffle Maker for about 3-5mins. Once done, I topped my waffle with 1 scoop of Private Selection Crush Vanilla Bean ice cream, Hershey's Chocolate Syrup and Kroger brand strawberry syrup and topped with Land O'Lakes Light whipped cream.

It sounds weird, but it is actually really really yummy.
I let my hubby taste it and he absolutely loved it!!!!

2 Thumbs Up for ME

Friday, February 24, 2012

HGTV House Hunters Bingo Party

Hi All. In a previous post I talked about "Family Fun Night." This is something I try to do at least once a week. Whether, it's with my immediate family or extended family, I make sure we do something fun together. Well, this particular gathering was inspired by a site that I am a member of; Houseparty. Houseparty gives its members the opportunity to host a party in their own home and gives them exclusive access to products (on their behalf) for you and your friends. Their motto is “We provide the fun; you provide food and feedback and promise to have an awesome time.” It’s that easy. With all that being said, I just hosted a HGTV House Hunters Party with my family and we played House Hunters Bingo. Houseparty provided the supplies (wine charms, bingo cards, dry eraser markers, napkins, and coasters). I provided the food. I served ham and turkey hor’dourves, buffalo wings, regular fried wings, homemade meatballs, frappe, and chips and spinach dip. We really had a blast!! 

The Winners of HGTV bingo

Thanks Houseparty and HGTV

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sweepstakes/Contests and Tips!! Part 3

More Tips.....

Set up your computer for auto-fills. This feature allows you to store your information and makes filling out your sweepstakes/contest form fast and easy. 

Start an Excel spreadsheet. You need to keep track of your entries. On the spreadsheet, you should copy and paste the url of the website you are entering, identify the prize(s), and add the expiration date of the sweepstakes/contests. A spreadsheet also helps you keep track of your winnings. Sometimes things can go wrong and sponsors have to be notified. If this happens, you can just refer back to your spreadsheet and notify the sponsors.

Insert additional spreadsheets

Insert headings to identify the url, prize(s), and expiration date

Join Facebook,Twitter, etc. Social sites host a large number of sweepstakes/contests. Some sweepstakes sponsors want you to share the sweepstakes/contest via Facebook or Twitter or they may want to notify you on these social networks.  If it says share your entry, then share via email, Facebook, Twitter, or Blog about it. Don't worry about more people entering. If it's for you to win, you will win.You may also get more entries when you share. So, it behooves you to  JOIN!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Everyday Life: Homemade Pizza

So last night I made pizza for the first time (I let the girls help). To my surprise, it was fairly easy and a lot cheaper than ordering pizza. I had all the ingredients in my pantry, with the exception of the pizza dough and mushrooms, which I purchased. Next time I think I will make the dough and tomato sauce from scratch. I will also be more creative (bbq chicken or spinach). Here are my pics. 
Sweet Italian Sausage
Regular Italian Sausage

Bacon, Cherry Tomatoes, Hunts Tomato Sauce, EVOO

My Pizza Dough

Olives, Mushrooms, Green Bell Peppers, Mozzarella Cheese
I added Strawberries (I cut them up and I added sugar to them & put them in the freezer)

Strawberries, Sugar, and Country Time Lemonade

Strawberry Lemonade

Publix Salad

The finished product

My Plate...
I also added club soda to my Lemonade
It was really yummy!!!!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sweepstakes/Contests and Tips!! Part 2

Whenever you enter contests or sweepstakes, there are certain things you must be aware of before entering. Here are my Tips:

Know when the sweepstakes/contest ends. You waste time entering when the expiration date has past.

Always read the Official Rules. You don't want to disqualify yourself if you enter more than once and you are only required to enter one time. Some sweepstakes/contests allow you to enter once per day or once per e-mail address, or once per household. Read Read Read!!!!!!!

Know the sites you enter. Not all sweepstakes/contests are legit. If they ask for personal information, other than your name, address, date of birth, etc., do not use their site(s). I for one don't enter anything that is sponsored by third party groups. Some site will say "click here to claim your prize before you've even entered." Claim means you must do (buy, etc.) to obtain your prize. Exit this site!! Sweepstakes/Contests are ALL FREE to enter.

Have a valid email address, home address, and phone number. You don't want to win a contest and the sponsors of the sweepstakes can't reach you or maybe they are able to reach you via e-mail, but you don't have a sufficient address or phone number. Sponsors usually give you a specified amount of time to respond once you have been notified of your winnings; be prompt, reply, and do whatever requirements are given. Other times, sponsors just mail it to you without notifying you.

Always read the requirements
.  There may be additions needed, such as a photo upload, essay, or age requirements. In addition, pay attention to sweepstakes that require you to accept magazine subscriptions. (I had to learn the hard way. It can be difficult to locate the "subscription cancellation" link on their websites). Other companies, in addition to the entry form, may want also want you to subscribe to their newsletter via email to enter. This is okay to do and is free (based on my experience). Just make sure to check your email to confirm your subscription. Follow directions and read the fine print.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine's Day 2012

I have to start this post out by saying "I LOVE MY HUSBAND." We have a perfect marriage. Yep!!! Not by mans standards, but by Christ's standards. He is always full of surprises, but over the past few months, we really haven't had quality "out of the house" time together, so Valentine's Day came right on time. This is how my day went. He first had me take the kids to his parents house for a one night stay. While there he surprised me with this:
Gift Basket from Bath & Body Works
A Lovely Card
Cookie Cake from  Great American Cookie Company
Wow!!! is all I could say. He told me that he had made reservations, but didn't tell me where. Well later that evening, we pulled up to Ruth's Chris Steak House! I had never been there, but really love a fat, juicy steak. The food was great, but the conversation and quality time we spent together was worth a million bucks. It was like we were at the dating stage of our relationship. Gazing at each other and blushing at the same time was priceless. I really enjoyed myself. 

Here are our dinner pics 

I Love My Hubby

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sweepstakes/Contests and Tips!! Part 1

In an earlier post, I told you that I would be sharing with you my winnings from sweepstakes and the website I use to win. Well, today I will let you further into my world. I will share with you some of the site I use to win prizes and tips for sweepstakes and contests

Some of my favorite sites for ongoing sweepstakes are as follows:

There are a lot more sites I follow, but I just wanted to give you a few from my list. I usually don't like daily entries, but when I first started entering sweepstakes/contests, these were the first ones I found. Besides, I can remember them without checking my spreadsheet. 

Other sites I currently use that are either seasonal or not ongoing:
Lane Furniture

Stay tuned because I am going to give you my Tips for entering sweepstakes and contests.

Friday, February 10, 2012

UPDATE: PartSelect’s $5,000 GE Giveaway Contest

Okay so a couple of blog posts ago I told you about a contest I entered that was sponsored by PartSelect. Well I found out today that I did not win!!! I know I know.... sad face right? Yes, but only for a few seconds. You have to keep pushing, keep entering, and congratulate the winner. Yes ma'am and sir, keep entering and keep going. I mean you win some and you loose some. I just hope I continue to win more than I loose!!!! Smooches

STOP!!!! Say NO to SODAs

I do not proclaim to be a doctor or specialist in the study of the body. But, I do know that their is something unhealthy about sodas (diet or regular). I read two articles Healthmad and Livestrong recently that talked about the affects of soda and what I found made me not want to drink sodas anymore. Sodas cause head aches, weight gain, decaying teeth, and other health issues. Again, I  am not a medical professional. I just think we drink a lot of things that are unhealthy for us and ignore articles like these. We also wonder why we have certain health problems. I mean if I knew something was harmful to my body, I would want to know. So since I care about my readers, I wanted to share this with you.

I am Changing
Instead of drinking sodas, I started purchasing carbonated waters as a healthier alternative. I just started and so far, I like it. I made homemade lemonade and added sparkling seltzer water- raspberry flavor (Kroger brand). It had a lot of fizzy and flavor. I only poured what I wanted to drink at that setting. As with any carbonated beverage, it lost its fizz after a couple of days. I also purchased club soda caffeine free (Kroger brand), and it works just as well. 

There are so many flavors that can be made. You could add a twist of lemon or think outside the box; lime, cranberry juice, blueberries, strawberries, orange juice, cotton candy, or anything you can come up with for a new beverage flavor. Make something that grabs your taste buds.

I am still trying to convince my husband that he should stop drinking sodas. So far, my pleas have gone unnoticed. I will keep trying though.

Club soda- carbonated water, sodium bicarbonate, salt, potassium sulfate
Sparkling Seltzer Water (Raspberry)- carbonated water, natural flavor

Other articles I found interesting:

Thursday, February 9, 2012

My Apologies

Please forgive me fellow followers. I have been a little incognito lately. Between caring for my kids, husband, and a HUGE to-do-list, I have not been able to blog. But mark my word, I will be back very very soon. Muah to you all! And remember, Valentine's Day will be here before you know it, so make it about him (Actually you don't have to wait until then to show him or her you love them)

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Pray for Homs, Syria

I normally don't watch the news (domestic or international) because it is so tragic to me. But last night I watch Anderson Cooper 360 and this is what I saw:

Homs, Syria

While we slept last night in our lavish, posh homes/beds, Syria was at war. While we play, laughed, ate, and partied, 200 Syrians were killed, many injured, and others ran for their lives. While we complain about our family, those in Syria cried because they lost family.

I say live life to the fullest in the eyes of God. Live as if there is no tomorrow because tomorrow is not promised to you. Lead as many to salvation while you are still in the land of the living. Pray for a heart of love and compassion for the lost. Pray for Israel,Jerusalem, and those that are in authoritative positions (near and far). Be grateful for that which you do have. Remember that if you have received Christ, you've received something far more greater than anything anyone could ever offer you- Eternal Life

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

PartSelect’s $5,000 GE Giveaway Contest

Okay followers, I mentioned in past posts that I enter sweepstakes and contests as a job/hobby. I am entering a contest hosted by PartSelect and it is entitled GE PartSelect’s $5,000 GE Giveaway Contest. We are required to select a topic provided by  PartSelect and post it onto our blog. There were several blogger topics, but I choose the topic“ Tell us about your worst DIY disaster!” In addition, one lucky blogger will receive $5,000 worth of new GE Appliances. I hope to win and surprise my parents with their new GE products.

My Worst DIY Disaster

OMG!!!! This was such a disaster. I tried to redo, renovate, or whatever you call it to one of my parent’s bathrooms. They had striped green and white wallpaper that had been on the walls since they moved into the home in 1996. It took hours to pull and scrape off the wallpaper. So I left some of the wallpaper on the wall. I then tried to paint the walls with wall paper still attached because I got tired of trying to remove it. I added primer then tan paint and repeated the process. You could still see the stripes underneath the paint. Paint was all over me and my clothes, but I did manager to cover the tiled bathroom floor; at least most of the floor. This got to be so bad that I took some fancy off white wallpaper and started placing it on top of the old wallpaper and paint, but that was hard because I didn't have a stool. So I just did the best I could with reaching the higher parts of the wall. The harder part came when it was time to get behind the toilet. Since I couldn’t successfully paint behind the toilet, I took a piece of the fancy wallpaper and stuck it behind the toilet. Needless to say, the wallpaper started coming off (even before I finished the project). Around the top of the shower, I painted a brownish-reddish color to hide the previous (striped green and white) wallpaper that I hadn't pulled off. After struggling for a few more hours, my dad came to help me. He added paint here and there and wallpaper here and there to cover my screw-ups, but it still didn't look professional. We finally finished with a wallpaper and tan and brownish-reddish painted bathroom and change a few accessories so that everything would match. One of the smallest rooms in the house and I screwed it up (I may try it again after I watch more DIY videos). My parents realized that I was in over my head before I even started, but they said they didn't say anything because I was so determined about doing something nice for them. Just thinking about this gives me a headache. If I could just win $5,000 worth of GE appliances, I know they would forget about the whole ordeal and fall in love with their new appliances. 

Monday, January 30, 2012

Make Valentine's Day About Him

So we always want our men to buy us something for the big "Love Day" right? Well I am going to do things just a little different. I know my husband doesn't ask for anything on Valentine's Day, nor does he expect anything. But I have a few small, but sweet surprises for him starting February the 1st and ending February the 14th. This is called my "Exquisite14 Days of Love." I asked my husband what would he like. Needless to say, I had to brainstorm on my own! His answer was a little......Well.. Let me begin!

My Hubby
Day 1: Spend day one planning your " Exquisite14 Days of Love"
Day 2: Make or buy him a coupon book. Allow him to use it when he wants
Day 3: Don't ask or require him to do anything for the entire day
Day 4: When he gets home from work, have something on nice for him
Day 5: Write a homemade love note/letter; something juvenile
Day 6: Send a random text letting him know you were thinking about him
Day 7: Once he is home from work and relaxed, give him a foot massage
Day 8: Bring him lunch or order him lunch and have it delivered
Day 9:  Buy him his favorite video game(s) 
Day 10: Wear something nice for him the entire day (they never get tired of this)
Day 11: Have a "Pamper Daddy" Day with the kids
Day 12: Hide him a gift or keepsake on his car seat before he goes work
Day 13: Take him out to eat and you pay (Restaurants will be packed tomorrow)
Day 14: Cook his favorite meal and serve him, prep his shower, have his night clothes ready and the rest will follow!!!

A Sample Love Note to My Hubby

Ladies, this can be done throughout the year!!!