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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

{ Layered Drinks: For the 4th }

Yessterday, the drinks I made were red, blue, and yellow,

Since the 4th of July is in a few days, I thought I should substitute the yellow for white!

I was out today, while the Bean was at his Summer Drama Troupe practice and grabbed a Mt. Dew White Out from the gas station.

This is Mt. Dew White Out- 30 grams of sugar

V8 Splash - 14 grams of sugar

Propel (with blue food coloring) 0 grams of sugar

There are also plenty of  Gatorade & Powerade flavors out there with the medium & no/low sugar contents, so they are great for the middle and top layers.

 Full instructions in my prior post here.


Monday, June 25, 2012

{ Layered Drinks }

I saw these drinks a long time ago. I want to say it was on a TV show, but I could totes be wrong.

I know, I'm just as shocked as you are, but it's been known to happen a time or two (or a thousand).

They are SO cool. Iknowright?

Easy and so much fun.

And yes, that is a jar. I love jars for drinks. This tall, skinny jar is from my favorite olives.
Mmmm... I love those things a big gooey lot. So much love.

But enough about those little green gems, on to the drinks!

All ya need is this: 

  • Clear glasses- the taller, the better (or jars if you like)
  • Ice, and lots of it
  • drinks with differing sugar contents

You can use more than three, but these were what I had in the house at the time.

Just check the sugar grams on the label.

For these I used:
  • Mt Dew - 46 grams of sugar (YOWTCH!)
  • V8 Splash- 18 grams of sugar
  • Propel- 0 grams of sugar 

The Propel is pretty much clear, so I added a dash of blue food coloring.

Then add your ice, allll the way to the top. 

Pour in your heaviest (aka most sugary) drink.

Mt Dew for me

Then pour in your second heaviest drink, the V8 Spalsh in my case, slowly, and through the ice.

Here is another I did with a tiny bit of the 2nd liquid it in so you can see the separation

I've found it's easiest to pour from something with a spout. I used a measuring cup.

Then, pour in your lightest drink (Propel here), again, slowly, and through the ice. You can add a little more ice before adding the last color if you need too. Make sure it's all the way to the top.

As I said, you can add more layers, just make sure each color has a significant sugar difference and ending with the 0 sugar drink. 

This drink has 100% Bean approval. He may have drank 2 of them.

These are great for summer get togethers, parties, holidays, or.. just whenev, ya know.

The Bean thinks I should make these for our Harry Potter party next month. I think I might could do that.

  Potions anyone?


P.S. If you haven’t already,  you can ‘like’ my Facebook page here, and follow me on twitter here, and you can follow me on instagram here.

Friday, June 22, 2012

{ Cheesy Ranch Potato Wedges }

Lemme just tell ya, people are obsessed with Ranch.

Ranch flavoring that is. I don't think most of America is going out and purchasing thousands of acres and hiring Cowboys.

But ... I could be wrong.

Ranch Dressings, Ranch Chips, Ranch Croutons, Ranch Crackers, Ranch, Ranch, Ranch.
Go to a restaurant and listen to people order dressing. I'm betting a good 75% order Ranch.
I order Vinaigrette. Coloring inside the lines was never my strong suit.

Oh, Hidden Valley, did you KNOW you were creating an obsession?

I think you did.

I host monthly Game Nights here. Mostly, it's teenagers. Shockingly, I'm ok with this. I like these teenagers.

I made these taters up for said Game Night (this month's theme was "I Mustache You A Question").

Here's your line up:

Cheesy Ranch Potato Wedges
8 potatoes, scrubbed clean
1 teaspoon seasoning salt
1 teaspoon garlic
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/3 cup oil
salt, pepper
1 to 2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese

1-16 oz container Sour Cream
1 packet Ranch Dressing Mix
3/4 cup Milk
Bacon, fried and chopped or Real Bacon Bits
Green Onion (if desired)

These take a while to bake, but they are so easy.

First, scrub up some taters. I did 8 - this is a rather large recipe.

Chop them into wedges, then toss them in 1/3 cup oil.

Mix up 1 teaspoon garlic powder and 1 teaspoon seasoned salt. 
Toss in a little regular salt and black pepper.

You can add other seasonings if you like too!

Place wedges on baking sheet lined with parchment (or foil) and sprinkle seasonings over them.
Sprinkle with a bit of dried parsley too (optional)

Bake at 400 F for about 45 minutes or until tender.

While those are baking, make your Ranch Sauce. In a bowl, mix together a 16 oz container of Sour Cream, a Packet of Ranch Dressing Mix, and 3/4 cup milk. Put in fridge until potatoes are done.

When tender, remove potatoes from oven and top with hobgobs of cheese (1-2 cups).

 Return to oven for about 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted and gooey.

Remove from oven, and top with Ranch sauce.
Pour it all on. Well, pour on at  least 1/2 of it, and save the rest for dipping.

We wouldn't want a ranchless potato. Oh the humanity!

Sprinkle on bacon & green onion, if desired
(no green onion here, not because I don't like it, but because I didn't possess it at the time)

 mmmm... ranchy and gooey

My niece (who is 18) took the leftovers home. All of them. And there were a lot.

Did I mention this is a BIG recipe?

So yummy.

Want. Now.

Have. None.

Sad. Tina.

Credit: this recipe is based off of this one from Oh So Delicioso

Friday, June 15, 2012

{ For Dad }

I don't know if you are aware... but in just 2 short days here in the USA, it will be Father's Day!

I say the part about not being aware, because someone sitting at a certain desk, typing these very words at this very moment could have possibly let that factoid slip her mind.


Until she was in Walmart today and saw Father's Day items.


My dad, LOVES ice cream. love. Love. LOVES.

When I was a kid, he used to eat a heaping bowl every night. I'm not sure he still eats it every  night, but I've yet to have him turn it down here.

"Dad, you want some cake?"

"I reckon."

(He 'reckons' a lot. Do you 'reckon' too?)

"Do you want ice cream with it?"

"Well, of course!"

I'm not sure why I even ask at this point. If there's ice cream, the answer is yes.

So, I put together a box of ice creamness for him.

Here's what it looks like

Layer One:

Caramel topping, Chocolate Syrup, Sugar Cones, and Sixlets.

Layer Two:
Chocolate Dipped Cones, and little baggies of sprinkles (I used these baggies): Cookies n Cream Crunch, Multicolored Sprinkles, Mini Chocolate Chips, Marshmallow Bits, Mint Chocolate Sprinkles, and Turtle Crunch Sprinkles.

*of course these are just what I came up with, add whatever your heart desires!
I just realized I forgot to put nuts in it. Dag-gern-it!

I put all of the items into a Photo Box (found in the Scrapbooking Aisle), lined with Father's Day tissue paper. I made the tags for the sprinkles out of sticker paper. I also used it for the top of the box, which looks like this

He'll get a few dollars to go with it to purchase his Ice Cream, and done!

He needs nothing, so he's super hard to buy for, and I know he will love this!

The hardest part of the whole thing was pouring the sprinkles into the little baggies. The Bean held them as I poured. He informed me a need a funnel. Duly noted. The sprinkles still got all over the floor, but that's ok... the dogs approved.

Hope all the Dads in your life have a wonderful day on Sunday!


Credit: I saw an idea like this a while back on Tip Junkie :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

{ Cupcake Crazy & A Thanks }

I just finished up making the cupcakes for my niece's graduation party.

I seriously mean JUST. As in, my kitchen, which looks like a horrific crime scene where the Gingerbread Man did, in fact, NOT run away as fast as he could, is still waiting for me to clean it.

Do not want.

Do NOT want.



However, the cupcakes are done.

I made, per her request,

Dude. I'm tired.

She's worth it though... I guess. 

LOL jaykay, I mushy heart love you, Emmy!

As for the thank you, I scrolled down to the bottom of my page tonight, and what did I see?

Over 100,000 hits on my lil ole blog.

Aww shucks. Y'all know how to make a girls day!


Now... I must go clean my kitchen. 



Thursday, June 7, 2012

{ Cookie Dough Sandwich Cookies }

Now the real name for these should be:

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches.

But I thought better of it.

Last Saturday, after returning from the Bean's auditions for the local summer children's theater, I was sitting here, twiddling my thumbs (or something like that), when this evil idea just fell upon me.

I realize now at this point, that me inventing something new is out of the question. The Googlesphere is too, too full of clever, crafty people. What I'm trying to say, is that someone has probably already came up with this.


This is what *I* did.

I took our favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie, seen here and filled it with Cookie Dough Buttercream, seen here (*note, be sure to use the Cookie Dough Buttercream recipe, there is also a Cookie Dough Filling in the same post. Don't use that.. that.. wouldn't... work.).

I did add chocolate chips to the Buttercream, which is something I do not do when making the icing for cupcakes.

Just use mini chocolate chips for this. The regular sized ones are too large. I was out of minis and I tried to chop some up, which worked OK. However, the minis would work better.

So, bake up some cookies, whip up some Cookie Dough Buttercream, toss about 1/2 cup of chocolate chips in, mix a little more, then, when the cookies are completely cooled, (with a LARGE open tip) pipe the icing on one cookie (or spread with a knife), and top with another.

These were EXTREMELY popular when I took them to Sunday School.





Shared on 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

{ Cheesy Potato Soup }

I know what you are thinking.

I'm posting a soup recipe in June. 

You are thinking I've gone off the deep edge.

Note: this is not going off the deep end, or off the edge. This. is different.


A. It's been in the 50s & 60s here! What??
(95 to  58 in the space of 4 days is not cool, man. Not cool. Actually, it is technically quite cool though, and therein lies the problem).

B. I've never understood the concept of not eating soup in the summer. I mean, hamburgers are hot, we eat those in the summer. Lasanga is hot, we eat it in the summer. Pork Chops are hot, we eat those in the summer... and so on.

Poor soup gets a bad rap.

I think we should celebrate soup and eat it year round!


I've been asked for the recipe for this soup often. Like, very often.


I don't use a recipe. This makes giving a recipe more difficult.

I've been making this soup for something like 132 years. Yes, it started from a recipe in a community book. Do you know what I mean? Where an organization pulls recipes together, sends them off to a printer and then sells them as a fundraiser? They are way common here in rural 'Merica.

I have no idea what book it came from, and I can say for certain that over the years, this has very much become my own recipe.

The other night when I was making it, I decided to measure things (gasp!) and write them down for you (double gasp!).

This is the result.

This recipe uses a lot of potatoes. You can use less, up to you.

My husband's grandmother tells about how her brother in law used to call her sister's potato soup "Huntin' Soup". See, he had to hunt for the potatoes. We don't want that to happen here. Unless, you know, you LIKE hunting for your potatoes.

Warning- this is a LARGE recipe. Great for big families or leftovers. Or you could halve it, if you feel the need. This is easily 3 meals for my family of 3.

Here we go:

Tina's Cheesy Potato Soup

8 Cups Water 
(salted to taste, remembering your bouillion & cheeses will be salty)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1-2 teaspoons dried parsley
1/4 cup diced onion
Butter (to taste)
2 teaspoons of powdered chicken bouillon
(or 1 can of chicken broth. If you use this, only use 7 cups of water)

Stir together in a large pot.

Add in 3-4 cups peeled, diced potatoes (depending on how many potatoes you want in your soup)

Bring to a boil, turn to medium, and let boil until potatoes are tender.

Once they are tender, add 1/4 cup flour to 1 cup water in a small bowl/measuring cup/etc. Mix together until smooth. Slowly pour this into your soup. 

You can use more/less flour. This will make your soup thick and hearty. 

Turn the heat down. This is where we add in the cheese. Do not let boil after the cheese is added.

We are all about high quality here, so add in 

2-3 cups of processed cheese food (aka Velveeta)

this photo is deceptive, but I used about 2 1/2 cups

 Feel free to use other cheese, but I have tried the lot and always end up back at Velveeta.

After that is melted, I throw in a couple handfuls of whatever cheeses I have in the fridge.

Here I used Mozzerella & Mild Cheddar.

Let melt.

This is most delicious with toppings of green onion, crumbled bacon, sour cream, and more cheese.

Sadly, I'm the only one in the house who thinks so.

Just cheese it is.

Serve this up with a salad, my Red Lobster Clone Biscuits or a nice crusty bread & it's a tasty meal.

And yes, even in the summertime.


Easy, squeezy printable here.


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