Easy Summer Dessert – Heath Ice Cream Cake

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

For me, August is the last month of “summer foods”. I like to change everything up seasonally – my foods, my clothing, my scents, my decor – everything! I know it’s little, but doing this keeps every month fresh for me. Several years ago I started dedicating September to all things apple, October to all things pumpkin, and December to all things peppermint with some lingering pumpkin.

Do you love Heath as much as I do? Did you know you can buy Heath pieces next to the chocolate chips? Now you do!

You need:

ice cream sandwiches – I did the mini this time but I really think the big work better. You need a very soft crust on the sandwiches so that this dessert all melds together.

Cool Whip

Heath pieces

Using an 8×8 (I highly recommend using the aluminum disposable if you are going to take this somewhere – and this would be a great dessert to take to a bbq – with a very small number of people, of course), spread a bit of Cool Whip on the bottom of the pan.

Now do one layer of your ice cream sandwiches.

Now do another thicker layer of Cool Whip and half of the Heath bag.

Repeat and this is what it will look like.

Put in freezer for several hours so that it will re-freeze together well. Cut in slices and serve.

Disclaimer: One son was mad that I “ruined” the ice cream sandwiches and said “So you mean you took something great on its own and did this to it?” Husband does not like Cool Whip so I said I would do vanilla ice cream instead of Cool Whip next time.

You can’t please everyone, right?

Let me know if you make it!

Amy

Hello Monday!

Monday, August 3, 2020

Hello all! I am linking up today with Heather, Tanya, etc. right here!

How was your weekend? Mine was good! I made some effort to plan a couple of things and it made it a fun and full weekend for me.

Since the pandemic started, I have been treating myself to some magazines. They make me happy. I think my theme was outside and decor for this set of magazines!

I also had a library pick up on Friday and got these two books!

But, before I could start those two… I have been on quite a good reading streak. I finished this over the weekend and the sequel Wild at Heart is not available at my library so I ordered it from Amazon in paperback. That’s how much I wanted to read it! Loved this book!

And, I finished this book, too, in just a matter of two days. I liked it but it did annoy me. Anyone else?

It seriously rained from Wednesday-Saturday much of every day. I think that is what caused me to read so much. I was either on my family room couch by the window or right here if it was lightly raining.

I did a manicure using Essie Bikini So Teeny.

Friday morning I got a Starbuck’s skinny vanilla latte. I seriously think this was my first Starbuck’s since March!

Friday night we asked our friends to go to a Beer Garden (Biergarten) that also has food. It was raining so we didn’t get to sit in my preferred space with pretty vines overhead.

It is dog friendly! But, we didn’t know and didn’t bring our dogs. I forgot to take photos of the food but we got brussels sprouts, pulled pork, and fish sandwiches.

Saturday morning I did some morning patio reading – my book and some blogs that I didn’t get to on Friday.

Then, I did decide to take both tops back to Target. The black one is too short. It looks longer online. The red didn’t fit right. Oh well. Again, not keeping anything that isn’t perfect. The fabrics are great and quality seemed great, so they might work for you.

I checked to see if this was in and it was! I bought two bottles to save for fall. I bought the cleaning spray last week.

I was super excited about the arrival of these personalized notepads from The Stationery Studio. I have been wanting some for a long time and finally ordered them. This was a set of 4 different sizes for around $24 I think. This would make a great gift! At least, I love getting stuff like this!

I love, love, love veggie sandwiches and look for them on many menus. I re-created the veggie I used to get at our beloved bagel shop that went out of business. This is simply a Trader Joe’s everything bagel, toasted, with garden vegetable cream cheese, sliced tomatoes, and sliced cucumbers. You could add more vegetables if you wanted to.

More rain Saturday afternoon from my view on the patio – I fell asleep to it.

It cleared up for a bit and I made a spiked lemonade – Tito’s, Crystal light lemonade, diet Sierra Mist/Sprite.

Saturday night I made homemade pizza for dinner – yes, the Skinny Biz pizza dough recipe. Google it! We watched a couple of episodes of Scrubs together as a family and then Jack and I went to get Blizzards at DQ. Mason went to the drive in with friends.

I watched this by myself. It was cute. Then, Jack and I watched New Girl and waited up for Mason to get home.

Sunday morning I had my coffee on the patio. Gosh, I will miss this when it gets cold! Sunday was unseasonably cool! Normally in August it is not fun to be outside. It was 60 degrees and never got above 80. It was the perfect day!

We had plans to take our friends on the boat and do lunch. This was the first time taking someone out this season. I have never shown you the drive from my house to the river. It is a straight shot from the street where you turn to go into our neighborhood to the river and takes about 8 minutes.

You go down this winding wooded road and then…

You are driving parallel to the Ohio River the rest of the way to the ramp where we launch the boat.

We met our friends (they dropped their son off to hang at our house with J and M) and cruised a bit and then stopped at Captain’s Quarters.

Tom got pulled pork nachos on homemade potato chips.

I got a cheeseburger.

Then, we headed to the cove for a bit.

and found some people we knew and tied up to them. One of the people was Tom’s sister and it was her birthday so that was nice.

How was your weekend?

I hope it was full of good stuff!

Amy

Friday Faves

Friday, July 31, 2020

I sound like a broken record – broken iphone? broken memory stick? – what on Earth are we supposed to say now? Records are back in vogue so maybe we can still say that? – but I really can’t believe it’s the very last day of July. Tomorrow is August which to me means back to school! I have spent my entire life – except for the first 5 years of it – on a school schedule. This August will no doubt feel so weird. I am pretty sure it will manage to be busy, though, and full of all of the emotions. I am linking up today with Andrea,etc., right here.

My first favorite:

I have been busy doing college prep stuff as you know. One of those things was making sure final high school transcripts got to the college. The boys were in charge of ordering, but as the mom, you have to check up on stuff, you know?

Both of my boys took challenging high school course loads. Mason took 11 AP classes during his four years and we just found out he is receiving 28 college credit hours which technically makes him already a college sophomore! Jack took 9 AP classes and is receiving 15 college credit hours which makes him a second semester freshman! Each AP exam costs $90 ish at our school. I feel that this money was well spent because the AP courses on their transcripts enabled them to get scholarships and now has given them this credit which costs much more than $90 when you are actually in college -if that makes sense. I am so proud of them! Just in case you are wondering about the world of AP classes, I wanted to share that. I am also an AP teacher so I have that added perspective.

My next favorite is this polish color that will work into fall (I always have a pedicure!):

It is Essie’s Exposed. It is like a grey/olive green. I ordered it off of Amazon after not being able to find it at Ulta a few weeks ago. My friend B had this color and it looked great on her! The Essie brush is so tiny! It’s great for fingernails but I would like it be a bit bigger for the toes, I think!

My next favorite is a bit of a splurge. I have done really well with not shopping much this summer. I felt weird about shopping much. I have so many clothes that I haven’t been able to wear or haven’t chosen to wear. But, I am a sucker for a cute top and can wear these from spring to winter, really.

Target’s Knox Rose and Universal Thread are frequent perusals for me on Target.com.

These are not here yet, but I will let you know if I keep them. They need to be perfect for me to add them to my closet.

Pretty, right? And, here’s a little secret. I am trying to add some more red to my closet because of my two pairs of red sandals! Ha! Do you do that, too? Try to match clothing to your shoes instead of the other way around?

My next favorite was my college shopping trip with Mason on Monday. He was more into it than Jack! He even picked his bath towels in his college color of burgundy. I thought that was funny – and I’m hoping for no laundry accidents with such a dark color! But, I have taught them to only use cold. Also, we only bought one sheet set and two bath towels. Let’s get real – they will hopefully wash their sheets and put them right back on the bed and they will hopefully wash one towel and have the spare ready to go. They have been in charge of their own sheets for several years at home.

We bought toiletries, too, and Jack still needed his. Target was having a deal that I think is still going on. If you buy 4 deoderants, body washes, shampoos or conditioners you get a $5 gift card. Score! I got $15 in gift cards for the purchases below and instead of giving me the cards, they just took it off of this purchase! Score!

My kids really don’t care about brands so they have been using Suave shampoo and body wash for several years and the same deoderant as Tom uses. Tom also uses Suave body wash because they stopped making Lever. Tom is very brand loyal and it seems like his brand always stops being produced. This has happened with his old shampoo and conditioner, his body wash, and a few other things. I kind of giggle about it because it makes him so upset! He, he!

This is not really a favorite but it might make you laugh/feel better about yourself… My SIL got a laugh out of it!

Apparently I went to Target like this. I had on olive shorts and a cute black top and wanted to wear neutral flip flops.

I didn’t realize that I had on two different flip flops, including with different heel heights until after we were home and I had changed into my lounge outfit. I remember thinking my left leg felt a bit weird in the store. Mason didn’t notice it either! Mortified! This isn’t the first time this has happened. During my first year of teaching I had identical navy and black pumps. Yes, I said pumps. I wore one of each color to a parent night! Oh well!

My next favorite is due to me getting a bit too much sun last weekend. I am super careful about sunscreen but darn it if I didn’t get my hair part burnt and the top of my chest. I did not put this on my part but I did use it on my chest and it helps so much. This Kroger brand is my favorite I have ever purchased and I have had it for a long time. I need to go look for more. At the beginning of the pandemic this was impossible to find because people were using aloe for homemade hand sanitizer.

This favorite was me getting a bit eager. This was the only one on the shelf at Target and the rest of the shelf was totally empty of all types of cleaners so I guess it was fate. This smells amazing! I also plan to buy several of the hand soaps. I like this brand for being more environmentally friendly and this just smells like fall in a bottle. I discovered it last year and I prefer this acorn spice to the apple cider. I’m hoping to get the candle, too.

Hub came home a bit early one day. He normally gets home at 5:30 and this day he got home around 4:45. I had dinner ready but it was too early, so I suggested us sitting on the patio to talk about our days. I made a tinto de verano – half red wine and half Fresca – and it was nice. I need to remember to do this more.

So, those are some of MY favorites from the week. What was one of yours?

Any fun plans this weekend? I talked about this on my What’s Up Wednesday post but I am hoping for conducive weather to sit outside with a couple of friends and a boat ride on Sunday. It looks like we will have lots of rain today and tomorrow. I like rain, too, but on my schedule!

Thanks for reading, friends!

Amy

The Big Screen

Thursday, July 30, 2020

If you are a long time reader, you may remember some of this that I am going to talk about today. A couple of years ago, I heard about Stargazer Films that works out of my city, Louisville. My son Jack started getting interested in acting around age 15 and I signed him up on their website to get information about being an extra in any films that would be shot locally. The film company makes movies to be on Hallmark and Lifetime mainly. When they are making a movie, they don’t know who will end up buying it apparently.

Well, an opportunity came up in winter of 2019 and Jack wasn’t interested, but guess who was? Me!

I went downtown after school and this was set up to be the “bakery”. It is normally just a commercial bakery and not meant for individuals to come in and shop and sit. I guess they had to bring in some tables and chairs, counter, etc. I think this was a former firehouse, by the way!

They had all of the extras in a hotel lobby across the street and they had to check out our clothing. They told us colors to wear or not wear. I would say there were about 25 extras of all ages.

I got to be in the first group to film! I had to sit at a table for two with another lady inside the bakery and pretend to talk to her.

I wasn’t supposed to take photos. This was one of the bakery clerks. Remember him because he will come up later. Doesn’t he have that typical “Hallmark movie actor” look?

I had to nibble this sprinkle cookie for multiple takes. I also had to pretend to drink coffee from an empty cup – harder than it sounds! We were pretending to be in Seattle. The cup says “Seattle’s Favorite”. I mean, could they have at least put water in my cup to make it about the same weight as a real coffee? Ha! My table partner got a little too excited about her cookie. I think she should have paced herself.

I only stayed there for that one scene and I guess I was there for two hours. It was fun and exciting! The main actress came in to the bakery and talked to her bestie about how stressed she was at work and how she never takes vacations. Then, she shouted to the employee, “Cookies! I need cookies!” If you want to watch the two minute trailer, it is right here. It is called “Starting Up Love”. To my knowledge it hasn’t been shown on t.v. yet. And, in the trailer, the bakery scene has totally different people so I’m pretty sure my group of extras got scrapped!

Last summer, we got an email saying extras were needed for “unnamed college thriller”. They needed kids to bring stuff like they were moving into a dorm and parents to look like they were moving their kids into the dorm. Um, okay! Dress rehearsal! This time, Jack did decided it would be something fun to put on his resume.

Jack is waiting for his scene below. I was a bit salty because I didn’t get to be his mom. I was put elsewhere and this time it was super boring. We had to repeatedly walk through the halls and into rooms. There are more production people than extras and actors, too.

So, from time to time I check the Stargazer Films website and I check Hallmark and Lifetime to see if I recognize “my” movies! Also, I know that they make lots of movies in Louisville and Kentucky because I heard we have good tax incentives for filmmakers?

Last week I found a gem on Lifetime! “Engaged to a Psycho” is the title and it was filmed almost totally here in my city!

You probably recognize this bridge from my boating on the river photos! This was the intro to the movie.

They used a prominent Louisville interior designer’s home for much of the shooting. My husband’s company built a house nearby and my bestie confirmed it was his house. She knows a lot about local real estate.

There is another scene at this house in a neighborhood near mine.

Tom thinks that this patio scene is at our friends’ old house in the same neighborhood as the above house. We had a couple’s wedding shower here on this patio if it is the same one!

There was a boat scene where we often go. It is called Captain’s Quarters and you can park your boat and they come to take your order. The bakery guy was also the captain on the boat in the blue button down.

The actors on top of the boat taking a cruise.

Bridge in background again.

I made my husband skim through it with me as well as my two besties when they were here last Friday for a happy hour. Isn’t that fun?

Have you ever been an extra? Would you do it? It’s not as glamorous as one would think I found out. There is a lot of waiting around!

Amy

What’s Up Wednesday

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

This is a fun link up with Shay, etc. right here that happens the last Wednesday of every month! I sure was glad this came up because I’m struggling with what to blog about lately! Put any suggestions you have for me in the comments, please, or this space may be blank soon! Ha!

What we’re eating:

I have been doing pretty well with sharing at least once a week what we’ve been eating. We have been eating a nice watermelon lately! I am also trying to focus on really enjoying what I consider “summer foods”! We have had tomatoes and peaches and lots of cucumbers.

Here is this week’s menu:

Monday – Cacio e Pepe with chicken and broccoli (from my post yesterday!)

Tuesday – tacos and Spanish rice

Wednesday – spaghetti, Texas toast, salad

Thursday – BLTs, tator tots, fruit

Friday – hopefully something I don’t cook

What I’m reminiscing about:

Basically everything from age 0-now with my boys. Facebook has been showing me all of the summer pictures I posted. I am getting really sad and nostalgic. Tom and I both agreed that it just went by so fast. I am super excited for my boys to start college, but this is another one of those “twin mom” things that I am about to experience. My nest will go from two-zero in one fell swoop. Tom is really sad. He is very sensitive even though he doesn’t show that side often.

What I’m loving:

I am still loving my new bedroom with my new fan (it’s the little things!) and my new mudroom. Doing laundry upstairs is such a luxury. I will say it’s pretty loud so we try to do it before we are hanging out in the living room.

What I’m up to:

I am knee deep in buying college supplies for two. It’s kind of nice to have an empty room right now to organize the college stuff (our old bedroom that is going to be our master bath) I am lucky that I have two minimalist boys! Bed, Bath, and Beyond was disappointing for us but of course Target came through. What we couldn’t find in person or didn’t like in person I am ordering from Amazon. We are trying not to go too crazy because the more you move in, the more you have to move out, and the boys and I agree that they will add knick knacks from the college book store and they will fill it with stuff as time goes on. I love my boys so much. They are so practical.

What I’m dreading:

I am dreading move out day/move in to college day for Tom and I, but I am also so stinking excited for them! I pray that they just love their classes and make lots of new friends. I loved, loved, loved college so much.

I am dreading trying to teach online for at least the first 6 weeks of school. That would mean that we go back to in person instruction October 3 if things are safe by then. I am worried that I won’t remember all the technology I learned back in the spring, I’m worried that I won’t build the same connections and classroom culture. I’m dreading trying to do a job from home that wasn’t meant to be done from home, basically.

What I’m excited about:

I am excited about college for my boys! I am excited for the weather to turn cooler. To be honest, I have always been so busy in the month of September that I am actually excited to be at home more to enjoy the patio weather. September is some of our best weather in Kentucky, in my opinion. We usually keep our boat out before winterizing it until the very end of October and fall boating is really fun.

What I’m watching/reading:

I am watching my Bravo shows – Below Deck, Real Housewives of New York, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and Mason and are excited for Big Brother August 5. We started a tradition of watching it together a few summers ago. I guess we will watch what we can and then DVR the rest for when he comes home. Jack will watch New Girl with me every now and again and we both laugh so hard.

What I’m listening to:

I realized this week that I haven’t been turning on music as much as usual. I love the Spotify playlists so I need to turn one on today. I tend to have t.v. or a podcast on in the background.

What I’m wearing:

I’m not wearing anything photo worthy most days. I really want to start getting dressed each day and figuring out how to take outfit photos from home. I don’t have a great mirror right now and I need to play around with my tripod. I hope to have that coming to the blog soon. I know I am much more productive when I take the time to get ready. I also have been wondering about the effects on feet if you don’t wear supportive shoes while working at home.

What I’m doing this weekend:

I am hoping to socialize with two of our couple friends Friday or Saturday night and then we have a boating plan for Sunday with some friends. This will be the first time we will have non-family on the boat this year. Mason plans to go to a drive-in movie one night so that will be his first time doing that.

What I’m looking forward to next month:

Even though I am sad, I am looking forward to really deep cleaning and de-cluttering the house after the boys move to their dorms. I have been working on this, but hope to really get everything done after that.

Also, we were waiting to not disrupt the boys summer, but I am looking forward to starting the next part of the renovation – the master bathroom.

What else is new:

Nothing! It’s Groundhog Day every day around here for now!

What’s up with you? Leave me your answer to one or more of these questions!

Amy

Easy Weeknight Dinner:Cacio E Pepe

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

I starting seeing this dish on many restaurant menus back in the pre-pandemic times. I took a chance and ordered it and loved it! Cacio e Pepe simply means cheese and pepper. You know how sometimes the simplest of foods can be the best? This is a prime example. I remembered this dish recently and went in search of a recipe. I do believe that mine came out “restaurant quality”. My son Mason says that this is the question I most often ask at dinner. He always compliments my food and I ask if he thinks it’s “restaurant quality”? Ha! What is restaurant quality these days? I simply don’t remember!

I think you could easily throw some shrimp or chicken in this. You could serve some sauteed or roasted vegetables along side it or a simple green salad.

The ingredients: As with many things in life quality matters. Use real butter and use real parmesan. I bought a small block of parmesan at Trader Joe’s. Especially when making a simple meal like this, quality of ingredients can make a difference.

You need:

6 oz. pasta of your choice (Normally it will be spaghetti or bucatini (spaghetti that is hollow!) In the photo above, I used regular spaghetti that I accidentally got in my grocery order. I am using angel hair now because that is what my family prefers. Something fun for your kids might be to explore all the different shapes of pastas available (online) and to try some new shapes?

3 T. butter

3/4 cup of the pasta cooking water right before you drain it (I was shocked to learn how often chefs use this!)

pepper

salt

about a cup of parmesan freshly shredded – do not buy the bag of already shredded – did you know that have cardboard/cellulose to keep it from sticking?

Cook your pasta like you normally do.

Right before you drain it, use your ladle to get out about 3/4 cup of the pasta water.

Melt 2 of the 3 T. butter in a large skillet.

Add pepper.

When butter is melted, add your pasta water.

Now, add pasta.

Use tongs to incorporate everything.

Add a bit of salt.

Add cheese and stir a bit.

Serve immediately.

When I ordered it at the restaurant It was between $10-12. You can make this at home for way less and it will definitely be “restaurant quality”!

Have you ever had this?

What restaurant meals are easy to re-create?

Buon appetito!

Amy

Hello Monday

Monday, July 27, 2020

How was your weekend? Mine felt like summer! I am linking up today with Heather, Tanya and many more right here.

Here are the highlights…

Thursday afternoon I did a test run of the Mexican Sangria Mule cocktail. I didn’t love the combo wine and tequila and ginger beer. It looked pretty, though.

Friday morning I took Jack to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to start college dorm room shopping. Their selection was not great so we didn’t buy anything and headed to Target.

The school supply section made me sad. Jack picked up a few notebooks.

Then, he did find his comforter, sheets, and towels. He wasn’t very fun to shop with because he was being so practical. He kept saying he didn’t need much and that he could use a lot of what we already had at home!

Friday afternoon my two college besties came over for a patio happy hour. I made sangria for two of us and the Sangria mule for my friend that really likes mules. She liked it!

I made us individual snack plates.

Then, I brought these out for “dessert”!

Friday night the boys wanted Mediterranean. We split two meals between the four of us.

Greek salad

Chicken kabob, rice, and fries

Saturday morning I decided to run to Hobby Lobby.

Look at the fall stuff!

I bought some clearance things for the patio and napkin rings for my cloth napkins.

Then, Tom, Ernie and I went out on the river for a picnic lunch.

After a while, there were so many boats in the cove where we like to go.

Proscuitto and tomato sandwiches

Ernie did a lot of swimming and then was worn out.

Tom was super happy that baseball started up this weekend and he watched a bit when we got home.

I forgot to take a picture but I picked up Cheddar’s for dinner and then we watched this as a family. I liked it but it wasn’t what I was expecting. The boys really liked it. Tom did not like it.

Sunday morning I read a bit on the porch. I am getting into this book!

Then, I met Tom at the river after he finished paddle boarding and we headed toward the city this time.

I didn’t tell Tom I was getting us Ale 8 slushies for the boat. Ale 8 is a drink from Tom’s hometown that tastes like gingerale. The gas station near our house has a slushie machine with this drink. He was texting to ask about it as I was getting back in my car after getting them!

This is what it looks like.

I got us McDonald’s biscuits and we had a fancy boat brunch!

We like to float with these things – we call them diapers but some call them saddles. You are able to sit upright in the water.

We just floated for a long time and it was nice. Ernie couldn’t come the second day because we dropped the valve for his doggy ramp in the water and are waiting on a replacement to come in the mail this week.

Out of nowhere it started pouring and we high tailed it out of there.

So, we had a very summer weekend with two boat days.

How was your weekend? Any highlights?

I have two more weeks of semi-freedom before work. I found out I have a meeting this week and need to do some professional development. We also have some appointments for the boys and need to finish dorm shopping. I’m taking Mason today. What we can’t find in stores we will order from Amazon. I know I’m late but I wasn’t positive move in would happen.

Thanks for reading!

Amy

Friday Favorites

Friday, July 24, 2020

O.k., time needs to slow down now. Are the weeks flying by for you, too? I am linking up with Andrea, etc. so go right here.

We have had lots of rain this week. One of my favorites was enjoying coffee on my covered patio in the rain.

I also went to my friend’s front porch for a socially distanced happy hour. She made an amazing peach bourbon drink.

Her porch is so cute!

I am loving curbside pick up at the library. I make an appointment each week to get at least one book that they have ready for me. This week I got…

I have enough to keep me busy!

Before the rain started this week, it was still so hot and Ernie didn’t even want to walk.

My trusty water spray bottle really helps in the heat!

I finished this. It was a bit slow to start but it is a really cute story.

I treated myself to a small container of the much talked about Bum Bum Cream. I ordered it from Sephora.com sight unseen or smell unsmelled. I’m glad I did. It’s smells like summer! It is a kind of vanilla tropical smell. I am using this instead of fragrance right now.

I still love, love, love my Glade Cashmere Woods but I did want to try something more summery. Tanya of The Other Side of the Road blog told me about this and she was right. I ordered the candle and the plug ins in Hawaiian Breeze from Amazon.

I placed another order for this popcorn on Amazon, too. I really like it.

I had been curious about baked oatmeal and tried this recipe from Budget Bytes here. It is more of a fall or winter breakfast food, I think, but I liked it.

I wanted to check back in about this product. I don’t think I will buy it again. I just don’t think it works that well to justify the price.

I think this works better. I am quite brand loyal to my Dawn dishsoap because I think it’s the best!

Everything is so green because of our rain. It’s so pretty and I am glad to have a slow paced life to enjoy it. I know that things will get busier for me soon but I hope to still maintain a good balance.

The rain was flowing through our rain chain from the gutters.

You know I love Target Universal Thread – they make masks in various sizes for $4 for a two pack! This seems to be a nice breathable material. I got L/XL but it’s a bit too big. I think I will try to loop the elastic to make it fit better.

I forgot to tell you that we also had lunch together on our anniversary. We tried a new sandwich shop. Tom tried out my new necklace fan under his buff to take back to work. He only has to wear his buff when entering the building or in meetings. Most of the time he is in his office alone and doesn’t have to wear it.

I had a really good veggie sandwich.

This weekend I hope to try to make this drink!

And, please follow Cattle Baron in Cashmere on Instagram. Doesn’t this make you upset?

I only have 2 more weeks of freedom and 3 more weeks with my boys at home. I just typed that and got a pit in my stomach.

What were the highlights of your week? Any fun weekend plans?

Happy Friday! Fridays will mean more to me very soon!

Amy

Eating Lately

Thursday, July 23, 2020

I hope you enjoy these posts! It’s quite obvious that I’m not a food blogger and these are all very quick snaps – lol! But, I seem to get in ruts and I always appreciate these types of posts from other bloggers.

We are in the middle of summer and we are all probably still enjoying watermelon, corn on the cob, perfect tomatoes, and all of the great summer foods! But, I must admit that I have started thinking about about my fall favorites! Anyone else? But, it is still premature for me, so I plan to keep enjoying some summer foods for a while longer.

First, I want to share – I decided to stop doing Dinnerly. I still think it’s a great thing, but after doing it since late March, I am taking a break.

I am trying to avoid takeout even more now that our numbers are rising. By changing up my recipes I am enjoying cooking and not too sad about it. I will still do takeout this weekend at least once, though, for a treat.

Last week after eating a decadent anniversary take out dinner from Outback I wanted to start eating better. So, I ate better until the graduation party! Ha!

I made my favorite breakfast below:

6 eggs, a can of green chiles, and a small container of low fat cottage cheese mixed with a tiny bit of shredded cheese and spices of your choosing – I use salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cajun seasoning. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes and then slice into 6 portions. This is 3 weight watchers points according to my calculations.

I saute zucchini with a bit of olive oil. And, this is such a good breakfast in my opinion. You can have some turkey bacon or turkey sausage with it if you want to.

I sometimes struggle with lunches for myself in the summer. This is a whole grain English muffin with tuna salad, tomato slices, and mozzarella. I microwaved it for a bit but it would be better under the broiler.

This is the skinny biz pizza recipe. I made this for dinner last Thursday night.

And, we had salad with it.

I got back to my iced coffee hack. I use a stick of instant coffee mixed with a bit of water and add half of a vanilla Premier Protein for one WW point. Yum!

Leftover salad for lunch. I need a less caloric dressing. Yes, I put salad in a baggie!

Dinner on Sunday night was Costco Tortilla Crusted Tilapia, mashed potatoes and broccoli.

This is so good! One of my good friends is Greek and this is a Greek side dish. I took a can of petite diced tomatoes and a can of green beans, added salt, pepper, and a bit of cajun.

I also brought back my Mexican quinoa from my blog friend Kristin of Stuff, Things, Etc. blog.

You make a cup of quinoa and add a can on red enchilada sauce and a can of green chilies. I also added a bit of Mexican shredded cheese. You bake this for 20 minutes at 350 and if you divide in 8 servings it is 3 points.

Tuesday night we had Southwest Bowls from Andrea of Momfessionals.

I sauteed some mushrooms for breakfast and added that to my normal mixture. Yum!

I have also been really drinking a ton of water and not much alcohol. I feel much better!

What have you been eating? Any ideas for me?

Amy

Costco Thoughts

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

I have talked about Costco before, but I think people are always interested in this topic. Most of us are still limiting trips out and one way we can do that is by stocking up on necessities. We have had a Costco membership for a long, long time. I briefly belonged to Sam’s Club but it just wasn’t convenient – about 20 minutes away – and I wasn’t using my membership. When I found out that Costco would be opening up 5 minutes away I signed up before they were even open! I had heard legendary stories of the wonder of Costco from people in other cities.

Now, do I think a Costco membership saves me money? That’s a tough one to answer. I do think we save money on some things like dog food. We get a 50 lb. bag for $35. I also think you might “save” money by not having to enter a store as much because the bulk items last longer. Because we all know that every time we enter a store, we will pick up some impulse items. I also think it might depend on your area of the country. Grocery prices can vary widely. I think groceries in Kentucky are fairly reasonable. It also depends on your family size and your eating habits.

Little known fact – anyone can enter a Costco and use a Costco gift card that you have purchased ahead of time. Also, I think you can get a one day pass. I would definitely say to do this before joining.

In our case, we go to Costco about once every two months.

Here is what I love: (I would love to hear your recommendations in the comments if you are a member)

Costco’s brand is Kirkland and their Breakfast Blend K Cups are my absolute favorite. One box lasts me almost two months because I’m the only coffee drinker in my house. I love this coffee so, so much! I would say it’s a medium roast which is what I like. I don’t do the super bold coffees. You get 100 K cups for $36.

Costco brand kitchen trashbags. They are great. This box lasts us forever.

Costco brand dishwasher tabs – Dishwasher tabs are so much better than the powder or liquid that gets so messy.

Costco brand laundry pods – same as above. I have never had an urge to eat one.

Costco brand dryer sheets (I know these aren’t good for you but I hate static – maybe I will try dryer balls and essential oils one of these days – tips?)

Costco brand toilet paper – very sad I had to buy Charmin this time because there was no Costco brand.

Costco brand paper towels – select – a – size is a must for me and these are great paper towels. I have been working on reducing use of paper towels and have done pretty well. We use cloth napkins for dinner now instead of paper towels. We have always used paper towels as napkins. My mom thinks this is weird.

Giant tub of M and M’s for only $10. Tom has a problem. Tom NEEDS M and M’s in the house at all times.

5 tubes of toothpaste for around $10. This is a great deal on this toothpaste that we really like – Crest with mouthwash.

Frozen tortilla crusted tilapia. This makes great fish tacos!

Individually frozen fish filets. I like to put cajun seasoning and some butter and this is so good. I am trying to serve more fish and less chicken.

Rotisserie chickens that are huge and only $5.

Their prepared foods – We love the spinach salad. They also have a Ceasar salad. They have street taco kits, and a few other yummy things.

Christmas gifts – I buy so many gifts here. They have some great things.

Boys clothes – I can find lots of things for the boys here. We almost always get jackets from here. They have great prices!

Peanut butter – giant containers and a really good price.

Ketchup – a great price on the kind we use.

My recent trip this past weekend:

I have to be pretty careful on the fresh foods because I don’t want to waste.

Do you have a Costco or Sam’s membership? Do you think it saves money?

What Costco recommendations do you have for me? I was trying to get in and out (because of the mask!) so I didn’t look closely at new products they are carrying.

Oh, I have also saved a great deal of money here for Christmas photo cards, contact lenses, and tires.

Amy