2 for 1: taco soup & tamale pie

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It seems that March lion weather has set in around here. When it is stormy outside, nothing tastes better than a steamy bowl of soup. This is one of my favorites because it makes a generous amount, which can be used to make tamale pie a day or two later.

taco soup

ingredients:

~1 1/2 lbs. lean ground beef

1 small onion

1 (28 oz) can crushed or blended tomatoes

1 (15 oz) can kidney beans (undrained)

1 (17 oz) can corn (undrained)

2-3 Tbs. taco seasoning

2 cups water

tortilla chips

sour cream

olives

cheese

directions:

1.  Brown beef and onion and drain. Set aside half for use in the tamale pie.

2. Add canned ingredients and water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for at least 15 min.

3. Garnish soup with chips, cheese, sour cream and olives.

Okay, are you ready for this…another dinner that is super easy to throw together–heaven!

tamale pie

ingredients:

left-over soup

beef/onion mixture

1 pkg. corn bread mix, prepared according to directions

directions:

1. Prepare corn bread mix according to package directions.

2. Mix soup and beef in a smaller sized casserole dish. (If you are sparse on soup, you can add more beans. You could also add cheese if you like things extra gooey. I have to say, I like to keep this one pretty simple though.) Pour mix over the top and spread to cover evenly.

3. Bake at 375 for 30-40 minutes or until cornbread is set.

4. If desired, top with cheese, sour cream, and/or olives. I actually like this best just plain and simple….so good!

zooshoo giveaway

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Deedee is giving away some super-cute flats here.

winners

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Leave it to me to be late. What can I say? With no further adieu:

Melissa and Kanien are the winners. Please email me your addresses at keers(at)leapintoart(dot)com.

I plan on doing more giveaways. So keep an eye out. (wink, wink) Your chances are definitely good of getting something! Thank you for the support and love. This week is always an interesting one for me. I feel so lucky to have awesome friends!

happy birthday koryn! (and bracelet giveaway)

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I can’t believe that Koryn would be 28 today. It is crazy! I have wondered all week what life would be like if she were here. I think she probably would have 4 kids. (With one older than Meg because she couldn’t wait to be a mom) and live pretty close.  I would really like that. I have enjoyed imagining what kinds of trouble we’d get into.

I thought gifts would be appropriate and decided it would be a great time to finally give Michelle her pay-it-forward item. So Michelle gets first pick on which bracelet she would like, the other 2 are up for grabs to celebrate my awesome little sis. Leave a comment telling me which you like best and I will announce winners on Friday.

#1 Glazed river rock with suede

#2 Chunky chain with heart charm

#3 Mother of pearl with suede

Happy Birthday Korynie!!!

leprechaun gold hunt

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Our neighborhood has an annual gold hunt for the kids. It is easy to put together, very low cost, and can even be done in the park if you’re so inclined. Let me assure you that it is a huge kid pleaser for a wide variety of ages. So call up some friends and get your green on! Here’s what to do:

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materials:

several rocks, at least 3 per hunter (more is certainly good)

gold spray paint

invitations (or phone calls)

bags to place candy in (party favor bags)

*optional prize for the winner of the hunt

*1 bag of candy from each child

directions:

1. Invite friends. Our hunters were asked to be between the ages of 3 and 11 and to bring a bag of candy per child to share.

2. Spray paint rocks in a variety of sizes to create the “gold.”

3. Hide rocks around your yard. Our hosts last year put the little kids in the front yard (8 and under); while the older kids searched the back yard.

4. Have the hunt: This takes about 20 minutes start to finish. (Excluding the playtime while parents chatted.)

5. Collect the candy as kids arrive and then divide it into bags while they are occupied with the hunt for the children to take home. If you have older hunters, you may want to distribute based on the number of rocks collected.

5. After it seems all of the gold has been found, ask the children to count their rocks; then bring them to a “collector” to trade for candy. You may want to add a good story about restoring it to a leprechaun to add drama. : D

6. If desired, award a prize to the person who collects the most “gold.”

The families in our neighborhood take turns hosting each year, but this could certainly be a family activity too. The rocks are saved for use the next year. Have fun and happy hunting!

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the butcher block is giving away…

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One of my favorite blogs, the butcher block is giving away a meat thermometer. We already have one (it really is a staple in my book.) If you don’t you should enter here!

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why i love having cute girls around

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stuff