Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Gluten Free Sausage Balls

Hey there! It's been a while, hasn't it? I haven't been doing a whole lot of crafting here lately...the hubs was furloughed during the government shutdown, and we have been super busy with soccer as well. Thankfully both are over. 
We now have a few weeks to breathe before the holiday rush:o)
I have been doing some baking and sewing the past few days, and just happened to have my camera handy while doing so.
I had to go gluten free after my gall bladder surgery...crazy, but kind of good as well. I have had to make healthier choices since the surgery...you can't go wrong there!
Anyway, now that the holidays are approaching, I am trying to find ways to make some of my favorite cool weather foods into gluten free renditions.
I.love.sausage.balls.
I love the taste, but I think I love them more because my mother used to make them for us all the time. Especially when we were going on vacation. That was our staple breakfast car food. Memories:o) I actually do the same thing with my kiddos on long car trips...making memories of my own now!

Most sausage ball recipes call for Bisquick...Bisquick has gluten...boo! Now that gluten intolerance is more prevalent, there are more gluten free options available in local grocery stores. I found a baking mix at Publix that is gluten free...score!
So are you wanting to try your own?
Here's what you'll need:
2 cups of Gluten Free Baking Mix(I used Namaste)
2 cups of sharp cheddar
1 pound of your favorite sausage
Work the mixture in a large bowl with both hands. You will want to make sure that all of the baking mixture is thoroughly combined with the sausage and cheese. Your arms will hate you, but your taste buds will be thanking you very soon!
Roll out into little 1"-2" balls. Place on parchment paper...makes clean-up a breeze.
Bake at 350 degrees for around 15-18 minutes. 
The taste is slightly different, but not by much. They taste super yummy and are a great option for G.F. folks!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I hope you all have a safe and happy Halloween! Looks like ours will get rained out, but I have a back up plan;o)
Hugs!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Plan B Strategies and Solutions

The need for practical business solutions is not new. What has changed during the past decade is the growing importance of having a “Plan B” because an initial strategy has fallen flat on its face. Failure is the best possible reminder of the following wisdom:

Always Have a Plan B.


Individuals and companies might have different illustrations that make a similar point: new solutions and strategies will be increasingly necessary. How many times does a strategy or solution have to fail before it is appropriate to try something new?

Many years ago Albert Einstein offered his own wisdom about the cycle of repeating the same thing over and over again. I have included his memorable quote below.


business strategy and solutions

Plan B for Banking Services, Cable Companies, College Education, and Internet Publishing


I believe that Albert Einstein's definition of “Insanity” is illustrated by a number of areas in which businesses and individuals keep pursuing a similar solution and strategy despite the apparent lack of success:

  • Banks
  • Overpriced and ineffective services from cable companies and universities
  • Internet publishing of articles and websites

For those that haven't noticed, banks have changed dramatically during the past 15 years. In part this is due to the elimination of many legal requirements since the Glass-Steagall Act was taken off the books in 1999. These changes were sought by the banks for several decades. There have been numerous financial problems as a result. Many of the biggest banks have begun “payday lending programs” which charge individual borrowers annualized rates of interest that generally exceed 300%. Meanwhile many small businesses have been unable to get normal levels of commercial financing. Tell me again why we bailed out the banks in 2008?

Universities and cable companies are both now providing services that most observers view as overpriced and ineffective. Many people are already using a “Plan B” approach to replace both, but traditions take a long time to disappear even when they have stopped working. In the case of colleges, costs keep increasing while employment prospects for college graduates are decreasing. For cable companies (which are rapidly becoming phone companies as well), there is a growing question about whether they will even exist in ten years given how inept they have proven to be at dealing with consumers while continuing to charge more and more. How many people want to fire their cable company? (We have pulled the plug on cable television and phone services at our house.)

In the world of internet publishing, Google keeps on changing and forcing internet publishers to guess about the next shoe to drop. This might represent the most challenging place of all to formulate an effective Plan B strategy. But the verdict is already in about several old publishing strategies and solutions that are not working anymore. These include article marketing and article spinning. There are also publishing websites that have gone from best to worst as a result of the evolving standards on the internet. What is working and what is not working?

New Solutions and Strategies


When the old approaches stop working, it is a prudent time to seek new ideas. While some might refer to this as having a Plan B, you should call it whatever makes it more actionable for you. “Moving forward” and “It’s time to face the facts” are just two common-sense alternatives if “Plan B” doesn't seem catchy enough for you.

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Yummiest Popcorn Ever

Today I share with you my favorite snack recipe, stove-top popcorn. 
We gave up microwave popcorn a long time ago. After we started eating cleaner, I began to think about all of the fake stuff that is in the microwave popcorn. I always felt sick after eating it, so I decided to start popping it on the stove.
It tasted a lot better to me after cooking it on the stove top and I didn't feel sick after eating it. Super bonus!
For a while I was using canola oil, but then I started using coconut oil.
That could have been one of my best decisions:o)
I HATE coconut, but I love what this oil does to the popcorn. It's delicious.
Coconut oil is actually one of the healthiest oils out right now.
When we have a bunch of kids over to play, this is my go-to snack, and they all LOVE it! Crowd-pleasing, cheap snack-ding, ding, ding, we have a winner!!

So here's how you make it.
What you need:
Large pot with lid
Popcorn kernels
Salt
(click on the above link to order..it's cheaper on Amazon than in stores)
 Measure out 3 tablespoons. The oil is in a hardened state, but melts quickly.
Turn your stove on medium high. The oil will melt in just a few seconds.
 Pour 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels into pan, and cover with a lid.
 Once you start hearing the kernels popping, you will want to stand over the pan. I hold the lid while scooting the pan back and forth across the eye of the stove to keep the kernels from sticking to the bottom...usually about every 15-20 seconds.
There will be rapid popping kernels for about 25-30 seconds and then it will slow down to about 5-6 kernels per second. That's when I remove the pan from the heat, and let it sit for about 30 seconds. You don't want it to sit too long on the heat because the popcorn will burn and then your house will stink..no fun! Been there, done that!!
 When you remove the lid, this is what you should have.
Dump the popcorn in a large bowl and sprinkle with salt. The salt will stick to the popcorn, and it's wonderful!
Let me know if you have tried it! I want to know if anyone else loves it as much as us!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Changing Table -Turned Dog Bed

A couple of weeks ago, I ran across a beat up, run down changing table on the side of the road. It was no longer safe to put a baby on. It was missing two shelves, and was super rickety. Because it was made of real wood and had interesting spindles, I felt the need to bring it home and make something out of it.
The hubs was obviously unhappy that I was bringing more junk home;o) Story of our lives, right?
Anyway, I thought it would make a perfect pet bed.
 This is how it started out. 
I used an electric hand saw and chopped the legs off. That was definitely an experience. Note to self...use a sharp blade next time. I was literally shaking so hard that I had blurred vision while cutting this piece because the blade wouldn't cut through the wood:o) 
I sanded down the feet to get a nice edge.
I then ripped the safety buckles off of the bottom.
And then spray painted it.
The cushion is made from painters' canvas and two large pillows from my couch in the bonus room.
I made the cover removable by adding a zipper to the back. That way when it gets dirty, I can just throw it in the wash.
Not bad for a roadside rescue?

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Old Drawer Turned Jewelry Organizer

My master bathroom is in need of some serious organization AND upgrading. Everything, and I mean everything is still builder basic. We have been in our house for almost 4 years, and haven't touched a thing in there. Unbelievable, right? I have so many ideas on what I want to do with my bathroom, unfortunately, we don't have the funds to anything about it right now. 
Tile in the shower, tile on the floor, a beautiful arch above our tub...
(I would love a claw foot tub, but that will never happen...the hubs must have his jacuzzi tub;o)) ...We would love to have separate vanities instead of a double vanity, and big chunky mirrors. The list keeps going, right? 
So, I'll continue to dream; peruse Pinterest and magazines; walking the aisles of Lowes and Home Depot; adding to the list of wants;o)
For my UK readers, if you are in the market for a new bathroom, check out these UK bathroom brands.
So since I can't overhaul our bathroom, I figured I would at least tackle the organization part.
 Today I am sharing another old drawer re-do.
If you guys remember, a couple of weeks ago I shared with you my drawer turned bathroom shelf.
The drawer I am sharing today, is it's little sister.
I found it along side the other drawer.
It's new purpose is a jewelry organizer.
My inspiration for the jewelry organizer came from this picture. When I came across it on Google, I thought to myself, "Hey, I have something like that!"
(source unknown)
As you can see below, my jewelry organization was lacking..in a bad sort of way. I can't tell you how many times I have stood in my bathroom untangling necklaces and earrings. SO very frustrating. 
So here is baby sister in all of her glory. A diamond in the rough.
 I used the same technique of stripping the 4 layers of paint off of the drawer. 
I did wear a mask this time...but I wore flips flops while scraping the paint and burned a couple of holes in my toes. Dumb. 
One of these days I will actually wear all the proper safety gear!
 I attached some glass knobs from Hobby Lobby to hang necklaces from. I also installed baby cup hooks in the top, spray painted this pretty little Union Jack aluminum sheet and hung it off of the hooks.
Now my earrings have a pretty place to be displayed.
No more tangled mess!
Isn't this way better than shoving everything under the sink and hoping for the best?

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This post contains links to affiliates. All opinions are my own.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Throw Back Thursday-Pumpkin Bread

I thought I would change things up a bit and take a trip down memory lane. For those of you who have been with me from the beginning, you will remember this post. 
I made these little pumpkin loaves 3 years ago. My how time flies! They have been a huge hit across the web. Even Hershey's saw it and posted it on their Facebook page....I felt pretty awesome after seeing that!
Anyway, you can click
to read more.
Happy Thursday!