Saturday, October 18, 2014

Papa Ted's Chicken Enchiladas

Ted has made us these several times. A good option for the chicken are the whole chickens from Costco. Shredded chicken breasts work too. These are always good!

Papa Ted's Chicken Enchiladas

1 8 oz pkg. cream cheese (light OK)
3 c cooked shredded chicken
2 c shredded cheddar cheese (or your fav cheese) - separated
1 onion, chopped and sautéed
1/2 can cream of chicken soup
1 4 oz can green chilies
1 can enchilada verde sauce (green)
10-12 flour tortillas

Mix first six ingredients (reserving some of the cheese) and fill tortillas. Pour 1/2 can of enchilada sauce (or more to taste) over filled tortillas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 45 min at 375. Serve with sour cream, salsa and/or guacamole.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Grandma Jeannie's Red Hot Applesauce Jello Salad

I met my friend, Jeannie, my junior year at Whitworth. She and her husband, Ted, treated me like one of their own and I often went to their house for dinner. Jeannie has made this Jell-O salad for me for years - I do love it!! Now, Elyse loves it too. Time to continue the tradition! Jeannie recommends you serve with spicy foods. I recommend you serve it anytime - kids and adults will love.

1 large or two small pkgs raspberry Jell-O
2 c boiling water
1/4 c red hot candy
1 24 oz jar applesauce

Dissolve Jell-O and red hots in boiling water until red hots are completely dissolved. Stir in applesauce. Pour into mold or casserole dish. Chill before serving.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Yucky Ol' Dresser... to Functional TV Stand and Storage

This is probably one of my favorite projects to date. Maybe because I've had the idea for so long and it finally became reality. The bad part is I did this over three months ago! We had hardware issues, so I didn't want to post until I had a good "after" photo.
My inspiration came from something I "pinned" on Pinterest over two years ago. I LOVED it!
I've been searching for the right dresser ever since. Then, this popped up.
 Maybe it was the missing drawer that made it so obvious.
Elyse and I drove up to Dupont and brought her home in the truck! Bill was not impressed when he saw it. Sue saw it that weekend and didn't think much either. It was super ugly - just trust me. Call me crazy - but I could just see the possibilities!
Here's the part where I'm really mad at myself. I took better pictures and I must have accidentally deleted them. UGH!
You will just have to trust me by this blurry blown up cell phone photo. It was UGLY. It was solid wood, but was painted to look like stain with the black dots attempting to look like wood grain. It had stains, gouges, and gunk all over the top. Handles were ugly and some were missing or broken.
I followed some Katie Bower tips from this project. I completely sanded the entire top of the dresser. I started with coarse grit - and sanded, and sanded and sanded with a palm sander. Once the main finish came off, I slowly transitioned to a finer grit. It was pouring the day I did the sanding, but I stayed inside the garage - making a good mess!
I then applied two coats of Rustoleum’s Kona stain and made sure to do full length strokes for the best and most even coverage.  Then I wiped it all down with a cloth diaper and did my first coat of regular polyurethane in satin finish. I lightly sanded between coats and did two more coats on top for good measure.
I cleaned the entire base - outside and inside the drawers too - with TSP cleaner. I painted the unit with Annie Sloan chalk paint in graphite. I wanted something more masculine since this was going in the man room. I sealed with two layers of wax - buffing coats with a cloth diaper.
It was finally done, but it needed some time for the wax to harden. It was HOT, HOT, HOT in the garage and we wanted it to cure, but after a few days thought it would be better to bring it upstairs to let it set in more normal temperatures.
In the meantime, Bill built the "box" that fits inside the open drawer space. I painted it with more graphite and sealed with a polyurethane satin spray.
Here is a peek at the finished product. The graphite is supposed to be light black or dark grey - it definitely looks different depending on the lighting.
I picked up this shelf liner from Amazon in grey and white chevron and lined the drawers for a little fun and function.

I'm very happy with the stained top. It gives it much more durability. Consider this option when repainting a new piece, particularly when using chalk paint. I don't love the wear on the top of our dresser in the guest bedroom and wished I'd considered a stained top instead.

The hardware was maddening to find! The large handles had to be five and a half inches screw-to-screw. No hardware stores carry them in store and we returned not one, but three orders from on-line vendors who sent handles that did not fit. Only one was my fault (I didn't read the details correctly). We were so frustrated. These handles were not really our favorites, but they work and look decent.

This was a fun project and I really enjoyed that Bill and I worked on pieces of it together. It now holds DVDs, puzzles and other toys upstairs. We love finding old and ugly things and bringing them back to life. Any new projects in your life lately?
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Monday, September 8, 2014

Long Beach - Birthday Week - Part 2

I already shared the Day in the Life post explaining that for my birthday, we spent a week at the beach in a house that belonged to a friend of OJ's. Bill, Elyse and I were there for half of the time, then Bill left and the girls came. I never got around to sharing the rest of the photos or telling the rest of the story.

It has been a crazy few weeks and I literally haven't had a moment to catch up. Here we go - a month later!

First, this was a proud moment. Elyse requested a unicorn pancake. If you can't see it - you are not my friend (smile).

The day Bill left there was just about an hour break where Elyse and I were on our own. I took her to the park to play while we waited for OJ.

That night, Anna and OJ arrived and our friend, Sandi, drove into town and met us for dinner at The Pickled Fish. We had a great time! If only you could hear these giggles behind this photo.

I had the most amazing dinner. Albacore tuna wrapped in bacon over corn salsa, blackberry relish and greens on top. It was absolutely delicious - not to mention gorgeous!

We stopped at the bakery and got Elyse a cupcake. She was so excited.

Sandi couldn't stay, but she did come back to the house for a gel manicure by OJ! I loved that she and OJ had just met hours before and it was like they had known each other for years. I love it when people can be that comfortable!

OJ's picture - Anna and her injured knee!

The next day we went to this awesome country store in a tiny town and Sue and I were so excited to find her favorite blue cream soda!

Posing in town.

It cost just a quarter. And it entertained Elyse. Enough said.

Love this picture!


Such a cool experience for OJ and Sue - they went down to the beach and saw these strange creatures all over the beach. They had not been there other days - and we didn't seem them since. They are "velella velella" similar to jellyfish. Every now and then, currents and winds change and instead of being pushed out to sea, they wind up on the beach (more here).

Sue got some this awesome photo with her camera phone.

Back at the house, Elyse worked some more on her cupcake from the night before. Can you say hyper?

OJ bought this amazing cake at the bakery and we did the Happy Birthday song (Elyse missed it - no naps meant on-time bedtimes!).

OJ was so amazing. She had handmade decorations, had thoughtful gift bags for all of us (even Elyse) and amazing birthday gifts. It was very cool.

OJ had Courtney is Fabulous at 40 on everything as well as this quote that she knows is my life mantra.

The amazing cake!

Sue gave me an amazing owl necklace. I will point it out in later pictures. Everyone was so thoughtful - it was overwhelming - in a good way!

Marcie came into town the next day. We did the horse drawn carriage through town. Elyse loved it - of course!

Carousel again - Elyse had the pleasure of doing this every day of our trip!

Our last day we headed to the beach. We had such a fun time. Just chairs and sand!

Sue was the only cold one. She was fine once she got all bundled!

This kiddo loves the beach.

I admit I balked at doing this, but the pic did turn out cute. You win on this one, Marcie! :-)

It was breezy, but all you needed was a sweatshirt. The sand itself was WARM. PS: Even after a few washings, I keep finding sand in the pockets of this sweatshirt!

Good fun wrestling...

Can you see my owl necklace/pendant hanging from my neck? Just after this photo, Sue noticed it wasn't on my neck. Had to have been from all that roughhousing with Elyse. All of us scoured the sand searching for it! We even planned who would head to town to find where to rent a metal detector! Leave it to OJ - she finds everything. She found the chain first, then the pendant. OJ saves the day!

Good day!

My favorite photo! Love how it turned out. Love these women!

I'm always kind of embarrassed when I see my tan lines at work when I'm wearing my dress shoes, but it also makes me happy. Sign of a good summer!

Great birthday with people I love and who love my family! So thankful!


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