Love Hearts

It has been a closet cleaning, picture hanging, finish painting kind of week...well, the last couple weeks.  I have some good projects to show you (really, I just want to brag because I think they look pretty good...humor me...isn't that part of why we all blog anyway?).

So for the first one!

I was watching Emily Henderson on HGTV.  She is amazing!  She has a fun sense of style and I love how she defines every couple's unique style.  In her "style diagnosis" she has little tiny chairs, belts, vases, cups, you name it.  The clients have to choose their style and then she reveals to them their unique combined style name.

I was watching the "Eclectic Artsy Odyssey" episode.  On her personal blog she breaks down the episode and tells you where she found her decor and any other little secrets about the episode.

In this episode she had some cute little hearts with personalized names all framed and so cool!  I wanted some.
image via Emily Henderson

After looking at her blog I found that she purchased the picture from an etsy store Sarah & Bendrix.  They have some very fun things and I would have bought something from them, but I happened to have a good shadow box on hand.  The call of the wild came and I began punching hearts.

I did have to make a quick trip to Joann Fabrics with my most recent coupons and grab a small heart punch.  Then I folded them all in half, decided the area I wanted the hearts in, where to place all our names, and got to work with some glue and steady hands.

And now I have this on my new gallery wall in the office!  I have yet to fill some of the other frames (like the sideways picture you see to the right), but we're getting there.  Have a fabulous Halloween!

Pumpkin Pancakes

Why haven't I ever thought of this before!?

I had some leftover pumpkin in the fridge.  That, with a desire to make something interesting, became pumpkin pancakes!
I added chocolate chips to some and they are good to eat all by themselves.  Think flat pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.

For those children in my family who don't like chocolate chips in their pancakes (what?), I made them clean.  But then that child topped it with nutella anyway.  I don't get it?  But both ways are fantastic.

These are the ingredients I used.  I made enough pancakes for 4 of us, put in about 1/2 - 3/4 cup scoop of pumpkin, spiced it up with a little nutmeg and generous cinnamon shakes.  I added a cinnamon and sugar for sweetness.  I wanted them tasty enough to eat without topping with butter (or nutella).  I might have made these yesterday for lunch and this morning for breakfast...  No milk for cereal calls for desperate measures (if you call this desperate).  Enjoy!

S'mores Cookies

These are very addictive...just warning you.  Crackers, chocolate, and marshmallow transformed to cookie shape could never be bad!  You make the cookies with chocolate bar pieces (I used the large Hershey's bar, one large chocolate rectangle per cookie) and then after the cookie is baked, stick the marshmallows on top and broil for a couple minutes.  

I actually burned the marshmallows on the 2nd batch when I was broiling them.  But surprise was even better!  I didn't think it was possible, but the just over-browned marshmallows made them taste like they actually saw a campfire.  I will be doing that on purpose next time!

Here's the link for the recipe from Martha Stewart.  Enjoy!
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White Bean Chicken Chili

I was wandering Winco one evening (kidless grocery shopping is heavenly!) and meandered past the magazine isle.  I couldn't resist standing there looking through some food recipes.  I found one I had to try, but didn't want to buy the whole magazine.  Enter scrap paper from bottom of my bag.

I stood between the soft tortilla shells and magazines and wrote out the recipe.  Think what you like other shoppers, I'm going to eat some good food!  And it was.

Tonight was a rainy overcast day.  Not totally cold, but perfect to accompany a warm chili soup.  I've had other versions of this using canned green chilies...this was better!  The jalapeno was not too spicy (my 5-year-old liked it) and it tasted fresh with the cilantro and poblanos.  I probably could have added another lime to make it even better.
White Bean Chicken Chili
(from? I totally forgot to write down which magazine it was)

2 Tbsp oil
1 onion, diced
2 poblano peppers, seeded and chopped
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
4 garlic, minced
2 tsp cumin
2 cans white beans, drained and rinsed
6 cups chicken broth
4 cups chicken (I used a rotisserie), chopped
1/4 cup lime juice, from 2 limes
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper

Add oil to pan, when hot, saute onions and peppers until soft, 6-8 minutes.  Add garlic and cumin for 30 seconds.  Stir in beans and broth.  

Remove 3 cups bean mixture and puree in blender until smooth.  Stir back into pot and heat for 10 minutes.

Stir in chicken, lime, cilantro, salt, and pepper.  Heat through and serve.  Garnish with sour cream and grated cheese.
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