Friday, August 28, 2015

Def Leppard Concert

Last week Hubby & I got to go see Tesla, Styx, & Def Leppard at the Gexa Energy Pavilion!
Guy Fieri recently opened a burger stand inside the Gexa Pavilion, & I was super excited to try it out!
We got the Makin' Bacon (a cheeseburger topped with a "patty" of bacon) & the Johnny Garlic fries. Sadly, the cheeseburger was pretty much tasteless :( I had been so excited to eat a burger from "flavor town", but I'm pretty sure they didn't even season the meat! However, I would have eaten a vat of those fries! It's a good thing Hubby & I really love each other, because these are not date night fries! Fried to crispy perfection, then covered in fresh minced garlic, powdered parmesan, & fresh parsley, they were wonderful! We did not finish our burgers, but we licked the fry bowl clean ;)
I had never been to Gexa before, but thanks to Groupon we were able to get lawn seats, which were perfect! First we saw Tesla, who we had never heard of before, but once they started playing Hubby realized he knew several of their songs. Even though I didn't know any of the songs, they put on a great concert! Next was Styx, who I have never been a fan of, until this concert! They also put on a great show! Which made Hubby very happy, he never understood how I didn't like them :)
Lastly, the reason I was so excited, we saw Def Leppard! I love their music, but not just that, I have always had a special place in my heart for drummers ( I did play percussion in Jr High & High School band!). So I have always wanted to see how this talented drummer plays using his feet & only one arm! The concert was awesome! & Rick Allen did a drum solo that had the whole place on their feet cheering! This was a night to remember!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

His Rib Family Tree

After the birth of both Ribletts, His Rib has suffered through multiple miscarriages. She told me awhile back that she wanted something that showed her whole family. I came up with this idea & started making it for her birthday gift (2 birthday's ago), & it is finally finished! Each precious baby has a leaf on the family tree, including the Ribletts Conner & Elias. After them, there is Hope, Jonah, Shiloh, Grace, & Lev.
I went with His Rib to the doctor shortly after finding out she was pregnant with Lev, & we were able to see his heartbeat. This was the first baby since Elias who we got to experience their heartbeat! It was such a special moment & a confirmation that this was a baby! They are all Rib & His Rib's babies! Sadly Lev did not make it through the next day, but he left us with a video of his heartbeat to remember him by.
All of these children are loved & special to us! I am so honored I was able to make this family tree as a reminder of each of their lives! And as you can see there are plenty of leaves for their family as it grows.

If you would like to make your own family tree, I used the tree outline at the bottom of this blog, or you can find whatever tree outline you like best. Then I used a heart stencil for the leaves, & I used my pinking shears to give the name at the bottom a fun edge :) I printed out all the names and traced them on the leaves, then I adhered all the parts to the main fabric using HeatnBond. I embroidered around all the edges to make sure they stayed in place & to add a fun color contrast. This was not a fast project for me, but it was a very meaningful project. I am so glad they loved it!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Amaretto Fudge with Fresh Cherries

This weekend the Grand Prairie Farmer's Market had a Fudge contest! So I decided to come up with my own fudge recipe to enter :) After a little trial & error I landed on Amaretto Fudge with Fresh Cherries.
I pitted the cherries then cut each half into fourths, this way there is a little nibble of cherry in every bite.
I created my own double broiler using a stovetop safe glass bowl over a medium pot of boiling water.
Sorry this isn't the prettiest picture of fudge, I forgot to take the pic until after some of the fudge had been served.

Amaretto Fudge with Fresh Cherries

3 Cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 14oz Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 Tbsp Amaretto Liqueur
1 tsp Almond Extract
20 Fresh Sweet Cherries, cut into eighths
Parchment Paper

Place a piece of parchment paper into an 8x8 square pan (don't worry, the parchment won't lay in the pan until the fudge is weighing it down). Put pan to the side until fudge is ready. Pour chocolate chips & condensed milk into double broiler over medium heat & stir until smooth. You can also use a bowl over a medium sized pot of water like in the picture above, just make sure the water is low enough that it is not touching the bottom of the bowl. Once the chocolate is melted & smooth turn off the heat & add in the Amaretto & almond extract. Stir again until completely combined & smooth. Now stir in the cherries until thoroughly incorporated & pour the mixture into parchment lined pan. Refrigerate fudge for 4 hours (it is best to get out of the house to avoid temptation!). Then enjoy!
Here are the judges trying my fudge! This is only the second food contest I have ever entered, but the first contest where I entered my own recipe! I was super excited!
And I won first place!!! I would like to take a moment to thank everyone who made this possible; Thank You God for instilling in me a love for cooking (& unfortunately, a love for eating ;) ), thanks to my Mom, my Meme, my Grandma, my Ma & my God-mother for helping me learn how to cook, thanks to my supportive Hubby who loves to eat what I cook, & thanks to everyone this past week who I "forced" to taste test my fudge. Also, thanks to the judges, I am very glad you enjoyed my fudge!
I can't wait to find more cooking competitions to enter! :)

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Book 12 - Deuteronomy an Introduction & Commentary

The 12th book on my Empty Shelf is Deuteronomy an Introduction & Commentary by J.A. Thompson.
This commentary made Deuteronomy a more enlightening read in my opinion. I am truly enjoying reading through the Old Testament with a commentary as my daily Bible study. How do you prefer to delve into God's word? Let's learn from each other!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Whole Wheat Germy Pancakes

I woke up one Saturday morning & a Facebook pic of pancakes sent me to the pantry to see if I too could have pancakes for breakfast! I found this recipe thanks to Pinterest & tweaked it to work with the ingredients I already had :) What came from this sudden pancake craving was the best pancakes I have ever made! So I knew I needed to share the recipe with you before I forgot how I made them.

Whole Wheat Germy Pancakes ;)

2 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Natural Raw Wheat Germ
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
3 Tbsp Raw Honey
3 Eggs
2 Cups Soy Milk (Regular Milk is fine, Soy is what we had on hand)
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil, melted
1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract

Sift together dry ingredients, then mix all ingredients together until no large lumps are left. If you want dinner plate sized pancakes as you see in the above pic, then freely pour your batter onto the griddle. If you prefer to think ahead, then grab a ladle & pour normal sized pancakes :) Flip when the batter starts to bubble on the top, then remove when center is firm to the touch. I enjoyed these with butter & honey on top, Hubby used butter & syrup, both ways were yummy & filling for our Saturday breakfast!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Woodcreek Brewing

This weekend is Woodcreek Brewing grand opening in Rockwall, TX. Hubby & I went with his parents to check it out.
They had 6 beers for us to try & between the 4 of us, we tried them all.
I am facinated by beer taps, they come in such different styles!
I started with their New Horizon Wheat beer, which came with a small slice of orange. This was a very tasty beer, great to sit out in the summer sun & drink. Which is good, because there was plenty of summer sun yesterday!
They had Matt J. playing music for us, with his guitar, harmonica, & looper effects pedal, he truly was a one man band :)
The next beer I tried was their Texas Star Bock. I felt like this was closer to a stout than what I consider a Bock. However, I do love stouts :) Half way into it, I decided I needed something sweet alongside my Bock. Opa! Greek Taverna was there & had a yummy looking baklava, which Hubby & I split. It's looks were not deceiving, honey soaked & flaky, this was exactly what this beer called for :)
I saved the best for last! Their Vanilla Porter was smooth, dark, & divine! I would go back for this beer!
Look out for Woodcreek beers in your Dallas drinking spots soon, they know their stuff :)