Thursday, June 30, 2011

Show Us Your Life - Favorite Breakfast Recipe

What a total coincidence...this is my FAVORITE breakfast recipe, and it came from my father-in-law - whose birthday is today! Happy birthday Mickey!

This is actually pretty easy...and is SO good!


Breakfast Casserole

You need...

1 package Hot Sausage (1 lb.)
2 cups Shredded Sharp Cheddar
12 slices bread
2 tbsp. Yellow Mustard
1 tbsp. Pepper
1 tbsp. Salt
10 eggs
3 cups Milk
1 can Rotel (drained well)

Directions:

Brown and drain the sausage.

Mix the milk, eggs, half the cheese, and seasoning together. 

Cube the bread and layer in the bottom of a greased casserole dish.  Pour sausage over bread.  Pour Rotel next.  Then, pour egg mixture over all of it...shake dish around to make sure everything is laying evenly.

Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.  Top with the rest of cheese, and bake for 10 more minutes, until cheese is melted and slightly brown.

Enjoy!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Recipe - King Ranch Chicken

I've been wanting to try this one for awhile, and it was definitely worth it...Noah told me it was a keeper! :)

I originally got this recipe off of Kelly's Recipe Blog.  But you know me, I had to change it up a little!  Here's my version.

You need...

1 lb. Chicken
1 tbsp. Chili Powder
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Pepper
1/4 tbsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
1 tub Philadelphia Cooking Creme, Santa Fe Blend
1 can Rotel
1 cup Pepperjack Cheese
1 cup Cheddar Cheese
1 bag Tortilla Chips (I used corn)

Directions:

Cut the chicken into small pieces and cook in a skillet. Add next 4 seasonings to chicken as it cooks.

Mix together soup, cooking creme, rotel, and half of each cheese.  Add in chicken once finished.

Put a good layer of tortilla chips on the bottom of a sprayed casserole dish...something like this...


Then, top with the mixture.  Add the rest of the cheese on top, and bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes (until bubbly).


It should look something like this.  I served with rice, and you can use the rest of the chips in the bag to dip the casserole!


SO good...and easy!

A little off topic, but I didn't want to put this in the money-saving post from this weekend because I figured nobody would check it.  If you're local, Groupon has a $50 Kozy's gift certificate for $25 today!  I LOVE Kozy's...it's probably my favorite nice place to go in Tuscaloosa!  Check it out!

Updated - I found another good deal y'all might like!  Go here to get a $20 soap.com credit for $10!
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Saturday, June 25, 2011

A Few Fun Weekend Deals! **Updated Sunday**

I noticed a few fun deals on money-saving websites this weekend...thought I'd share!

-This is a new one as of Sunday!  There is a new app for your phone Noah found called WeReward.  You check in to places like the other apps I've found, but you can also take pictures of yourself at places for bigger bonuses!  Each one ranges from 10 cents to over a dollar.  Once you get enough credits, they deposit the money into your Paypal account!  If you're on your mobile phone, click here to sign up.

-Groupon has a good deal - get 5 Blockbuster Express (kiosk) rentals for $2...and it's nationwide!  Click here, and look on the right side...it should be there, no matter what city you're in!

-Swagbucks is running a "Swagcode Extravaganza" next week...which means they put out a ton of codes you can use to earn Swagbucks!  You can learn more about Swagbucks here, or go sign up here!

-Restaurant.com is one of my favorite places to get good deals on restaurants. They have a special right now - put in the code SUMMER for 70% off.  That means a $25 credit for $3 usually!  Click here to see.

-I noticed the other day that Checkpoints still has the Cars 2 promo, where you can scan just a few things and make about a dollar!  It's super easy...just download the Checkpoints app and put in lflambert to earn your first dollar in gift cards!

-If you're local - I recently discovered 99.1's Discount Dish - they have really good local restaurant gift cards for half off!  I wish I had checked yesterday - they had Walton's for half off (that just goes to show you that you have to check RIGHT WHEN they post these things!).  Click here!
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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Cruise - Part 2!

Sorry this is a little late...there were a lot of pictures on Noah's phone I forgot about!  If you missed part 1, you can click here!

The next couple of days on the cruise were still on-shore. On Thursday, we were in Belize. We have been here before too - the last time, we were snorkeling, so we didn't get to do as much shopping.

The shopping in Belize cracked us up.  There were malls of everything that you can't buy legally in America - ha!  It was very interesting to see!
We also went to this place we had gone last time too and loved - The Wet Lizard.  It's right at the port and has AWESOME food!

They also had the BEST conch fritters IN THE WORLD!!  We both agreed we should have just gotten two orders of these (because I stole half of Noah's!).



The next day was Cozumel...this was the only day we had an excursion planned.  It was SUCH a fun excursion!

It's called Salsa and Salsa.  They teach you how to make 7 different kinds of salsa, then they teach you how to salsa dance!  It was the best excursion we have ever done by far.




Us with the other couple at our table...they were from Mississippi.  She was a 1st grade teacher!  And they were really sweet!


This is everything on your table when you get there.  You get to make everything from salsa to guacamole to this REALLY awesome fruit dessert salsa!  I would highly recommend this if you're going to Cozumel or Cabo anytime soon.


The after.  We made a little bit of a mess. :)

Noah was the lucky one that got picked to wear a sombrero in the group picture!


They also had this pretty cool idea...this is "Lela."  It's their donation pig.  Every month, they pick a new charity from around the world to raise money for.  This month, it was for the Joplin Humane Society, which I thought was cool by itself.  But something came up about us being from Tuscaloosa, and one of the hosts says, "Oh, Lela was for Tuscaloosa last month!"  Almost lost it right then and there.

Turns out, they donated to the DCH Foundation's fund for DCH employees last month...how cool is that?  Needless to say, we contributed to Lela and got this super cool picture in return. :)

______________________________________________

I said I was going to do a photobucket album of just food..but then I realized how long it would take me to upload all of the pictures (probably over 100) of food from our phones.  Ain't happening.  I will show you the BEST meal (in my opinion, I don't know about Noah) we had!


Who would have guessed that Leslie would think the sushi meal would be the best? :)  No kidding, just about the best sushi I've ever had.


Noah's plate.  Not my style, but he liked it.

So we finished our plates, and the sushi chef asks us what else we want...Noah says something with eel.  Chef looks at us and asks, "Are you guys allergic to anything?"  Well that will freak you out.

After we said no, this is what he put in front of us.  Oh. My. Gee.  SO GOOD.  If I hadn't already felt like I was going to throw up from eating too much, it probably would have been even better! :)

______________________________________________


I didn't have many pictures from the last two days...we really just laid out all day the last day (and I have 15 different shades of tan lines to prove it), and were off the boat by like 9 the next day.


Noah's parents (who live about 2 hours away from New Orleans) drove down Sunday to pick us up.  We took them to one of our favorites, Palace Cafe, for father's day lunch, and hung out with Noah's dad for the rest of the day.  Great ending to a great vacation!

All in all, it was a great week.  We needed something like that so bad.  I feel so much more focused and ready to deal with the next few months (or years, who knows) now!
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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Cruise - Part 1!


We're back!!

Noah and I went on a 7 day Caribbean cruise last week!  It was MUCH, MUCH needed - after the last year, and Noah's last two months at work, it was time for a break. :)

We left Sunday out of New Orleans.  Honestly, I don't have a lot of pictures from Sunday and Monday but of food...ha!  I'm going to try to just make a photobucket album, rather than put a million food pictures on here.  I'll put that in the next post!

Here's our room...

Monday we mainly just laid out and ate...I'm telling you, that's all you do on a cruise!  It was nice to just relax (something Noah doesn't like to do on vacation, but I do...so a cruise is a perfect compromise!).

I did like this picture.  When Noah doesn't want his picture taken, he does this, so he knows I won't use it.


So boom.  I used it.  Maybe he won't pull that business anymore.


Tuesday, we were in Costa Maya, Mexico.  It was nice (there was a pool and beach area right at the port), but we decided to get back on the ship and go to the pool.  Best decision EVER!  There was nobody on the boat, so we didn't have to wait anywhere and we were able to get seats right by the pool.


We also did a good bit of laying around, doing nothing on this trip...this would be the stream of pictures I took trying to get a good one that afternoon!  If you couldn't tell, Noah didn't want a picture here either.

I finally got a good one, and it was blurry.  That's about right. :)


Wednesday was our day in Honduras.  Once again, not my thing, but Noah likes seeing different countries...so we got out and explored - at least for a little bit!  We've been to Honduras before though, so it was one of those "been there, done that" kind of things.  I promise I liked the next two ports more than these! :)

Part 2 coming tomorrow!
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Sunday, June 12, 2011

See You Next Week!

If you're reading this, I am currently on a cruise ship headed for Costa Maya, Mexico!!

And yes, I'm perfectly comfortable putting this out there for all the world to see, because we have a house sitter and Hardy puppy is happy as a clam with his grandparents in Hattiesburg.


(all from our last Caribbean cruise.)

I hope you have as fantastic of a week as I will! :)
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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Murphy's Law

(Warning: Vent post)

It's been a Murphy's Law kind of day so far: if it could go wrong, it has.

I've had a pretty good stretch lately, so I can't really complain if this is the only bad day in awhile.  But really?  Does everything have to happen all in the same morning?

So far (keep in mind, it's 12:30)...
  • I woke up to 2 customers wanting to hold/refund orders
  • Got out of bed, found out I wasn't pregnant this month
  • Immediately went and checked email/facebook...found out two girls I know that got pregnant the same time I did had their babies this morning
  • Tried to get my coupons together to go to the grocery store...several wouldn't print
  • Didn't get paper delivered for penny item coupon for grocery store
  • Couldn't find car keys to get to grocery store
  • Get halfway to grocery store, realized I forgot a $5 coupon I needed
  • Finally get to the grocery store...did shopping, went to check out, and the cashier literally double and triple checked EVERY. SINGLE. COUPON. I. HAD.  Had to check to make sure I had the quantities on each one...I did.  Had to check and make sure I had the right product...I did.  Finally, we get to the end, and I had a $4.99 product with a $5 coupon.  She called her manager over to take THE ONE CENT off of the coupon.
  • Get to the fast food place for lunch...didn't have the coupon I needed for it
  • Get home to find out ANOTHER girl that got pregnant the same time I did had her baby (that's three for this morning, if you've lost count).
  • A few minutes later, get an email from the same customer as this morning wanting a full refund on a project I had already done (and that she had already received all of the graphics for).
 By this point, I cracked.  I was shaking and crying there for a few minutes (have you figured out yet that I start shaking when I'm super emotional about something?).  But I pulled my junk together, and I'm better now.

But this day could go on and end if it wanted to.  I'm keeping my sanity by repeating...

I WILL BE ON A CRUISE IN FOUR DAYS!!!
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Wordless Wednesday

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Money-Saving Linky - June **Updated**

I thought the money saving post I did last month was so much fun, I'd start doing one every month!  I love finding new ways to save money, and there are always new and fun ways!

-Checkpoints has become my new favorite iPhone app (are you kidding?  I can earn money on my phone?). It has a whole campaign running at Wal-Mart right now that gets you like 150 points (equivalent of about 50 cents) just for scanning 5 items...that takes like a minute!  They also have Home Depot gift cards available to get with your points now.  We're saving up to help with putting in hardwood flooring later this year...we've already got like $70 worth of gift cards after only a couple of months!

You can see my last money-saving post to get an explanation of Checkpoints.  If you want to get it, just search for the name in your app store...it will come up!  And if you put in my code (lflambert), you get enough points to get a $1 gift card for doing absolutely nothing else!  Or, you can donate to the Tornado Relief with your points...which I think is pretty darn cool. :)

-Shopkick is another fun app that I love.  It's the same principle as Checkpoints - check in to businesses for points, scan barcodes on items for points...they just do it a little differently.  I still earn a ton on Shopkick (enough that I was able to use $15 in gift cards to pay for my Sunday Target run!).    You can go here to find out more, and when you download from your app store, put in my referral code (maize6807) for a 50 point bonus!

-I've written about WeReward in another post, so I thought I'd add it to this one!  You check in at places and take pictures of yourself in a store for points, that roll over into paypal money!  Click here to see it. 

-Inbox Dollars is a click-through company I love!  All I ever really do is click a link on emails they send me...and I've made around $21 so far for just taking a minute or two a day and clicking emails!

-Mypoints is another company that's similar.  You click through on emails, but you can also shop through that site and earn points, print coupons and earn points (so you save two ways!), etc.  It's fun too...and I've earned almost $100 in gift cards from there since starting about a year ago!  If you want a referral to this, just leave a comment with your email, and I'll send you a referral link!

-My FABULOUS ad company, Blogher, is currently taking new names on their wait list!  They have a new program that's lets you hosts certain parts of Blogher for awhile until new spots for the sidebar ad campaigns show up.  Click here to get on the wait list...trust me, you want to, their wait list isn't open very often!

-You know I love Swagbucks.  You probably knew that you could search and make money there, but did you know that you can watch videos and earn too?  They also did a whole campaign last month where you could donate your Swagbucks to American Red Cross for the tornado victims...made me love them even more!  (Here is an explanation of Swagbucks I did a while back.)

-I don't think I mentioned ebates before.  Before you shop ANYWHERE online, look here to see if they have a discount!  Let's say I wanted to buy something from walmart.com...I would go here, type in walmart.com in the top box, and see if it gives me a discount (it does! 2%)...then, when I click through ebates to go to walmart.com and buy whatever, I automatically get 2% deposited into my ebates account from whatever I spend!  I very rarely find a store that ebates doesn't have.  Check it out before you shop online!

-I feel like Groupon goes through waves - there won't be a thing that interests me for months, then I'll find like 10 good ones in a week.  This past week I got a couple of good restaurants here in Tuscaloosa for half price and got a half price Old Navy gift card!  Check it out here.

-Living Social is one I've liked lately too.  It's a lot like Groupon - you get really good deals for around half price.  There are a lot more available for big cities - click here to see!

Alright, what do you have this month?  Post your links below...and tell what deal we're looking at in the name of your link!

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Monday, June 6, 2011

A Big THANK YOU!!!

My living room has resembled a warehouse and/or bomb shelter for the past few weeks...

...but with good reason. :)

(Hardy's beloved duck made a cameo in this one.)

I've had readers from all over the country that wanted to help my city in the recovery after the April 27th tornado.  I have had 11 (to my count) readers send everything from toothpaste to toys to people of this town over the past month and a half!

Because of YOU GUYS, Temporary Emergency Services has received...
1 box of toys, books, and art supplies for children
1 box of food and disposable plates
10 bottles, 3 sets of Take n Toss dishes
8 packs of baby wipes
5 packs diapers
7 packs of formula, 1 pack of cereal, 2 cases of baby food
6 (SIX!) boxes of clothes for men, women, and children
10 packs of socks and underwear
7 Target and WalMart gift cards

All because of YOU!!!  That's incredible!!

If you sent something to me, I'm going to be emailing you personally and thanking you this week.  If you don't hear from me by the end of the week, please email me and just make sure I got your shipment!

And I still have some donations coming in.  If you're still interested in helping, the biggest things Tuscaloosa/North Alabama need right now are...

(Per Temporary Emergency Services)

  • Gatorade or other sports drinks
  • Flavored drink mix packets to mix with water
  • Packing tape- We have to make several trips to buy this a day!
  • ANY Cleaning Supplies
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Dishwashing Detergent
  • NEWBORN Diapers
  • Pull-ups
  • Small Bags of Chips
  • Plastic/Styrofoam Cups
  • Garbage Bags
  • Sharpies
  • Jelly
  • Canned Meat
  • Tuna
  • Canned Chicken
  • Canned Soup
  • Granola Bars
  • Energy Bars
  • Shrink Wrap
  • Chips
  • Baked Beans
  • Pallets
  • Brooms
  • Mops
  • Plastic Forks
  • Plastic Spoons
  • Rice
  • Juice
  • Large Underwear Sizes
  • LARGE Clothing (2x and bigger)
  • Children's Medicines (Adivl, Tylenol, Etc.)
  • Silverware
  • Pot & Pans
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Meat for Indian Mike to cook and feed our wonderful volunteers and the victims who are still without power and their homes!
  • Keep in mind that these are our biggest needs, not our only needs.  The only thing we are not accepting at this time is clothing.
If you have any of these things, check here for donation sites and mailing addresses if you don't have a site.

Again, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!  I am so impressed with how much better things are looking every day, and it's because of people like you!!
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Sunday, June 5, 2011

I just needed to share this...

One week...

from right now...

I will be eating this.

http://www.zydecocruiser.com/NCLSpirit08/Menus2/index.htm
AHHHH!!!!
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Show Us Your Life - Favorite Appetizer Recipe

I think a good appetizer recipe is something you need as soon as you get married/grow up!  I remember this being one of the first recipes I made myself, just because I needed a good one to take to parties and pot lucks.  It's super easy, and I still love it!

Stuffed Mushrooms

You need:
2 packs button mushrooms (you can get nicer, but the cheap ones work)
1 pack frozen spinach, thawed
1 can cut artichokes
6-10 slices bacon, cooked and drained
1 cup mayo
1 egg
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp. Tony Chachere's
1 cup cheddar cheese
Parmesan Cheese


Directions:
1. Clean the mushrooms and take their stems off...you just need to caps for this.  Save the stems for soup!
2. Mix the other ingredients together in a large bowl (except for the parmesan).
3. Put the caps on a baking sheet like a bowl.  Put a spoonful of the mix in each one.
4. Sprinkle with the parmesan.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, until the top is browned.
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