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Cuban Sliders

Blog #43:

Wow! It has been a month since I last posted!  Today my youngest is 1 month old!  Which is why I have not posted.  There has been many sleepless nights for sure!  I have some upcoming blogs on the baby and things I have learned along the way.  Stay tuned!

Anyway, I had been dying to make some sandwich sliders and finally made them!  This was an easy meal to make and went straight into the oven.  I did not want to use pork or ham and ended using what I had in my fridge.  I’d say a bit healthier!

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You will need:

  • 12 bun Hawaiian rolls
  • deli turkey
  •  leftover chicken, shredded
  • American cheese slices
  • mustard
  • pickled jalapeños
  • 1 tsb of oregano
  • 1 piece of garlic, smashed
  • the juice of 1 lemon or lime
  • 1 tbs of fresh cilantro
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter
  • 1 tsb of cumin

Prepare:

Heat your oven to 350 degrees.  In a sauce pan heat up the butter, oregano, cumin, cilantro and lemon or lime.  You want to split the mixture into 3 bowls.  First mixture goes into the shredded chicken.  Put aside.  In a 9×13 oven dish add the 2nd mixture of melted butter mixture.  Enough to spread at the bottom of the dish.  Then slice all 12 rolls together, horizontal and put in the dish.  On the bottom pieces of buns layer the turkey slices, shredded chicken, cheese slices and jalapeños.  Then spread the mustard on the inner top rolls.  Add the top half of the rolls and spread the last mixture on the rolls.

Cover with foil for about 25 min and uncovered for 5 minutes or until toasted.

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The slides have a tangy, sweet and spicy taste all at once.  Delicious!  Feel free to add as much or as little of all the ingredients.  I just eye balled everything!

This is a great appetizer for those football nights!!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

Freezer Meal Ideas

Blog #42:

I have 3 weeks left to go before baby #3 arrives!  I was planning on making at least 10 meals to get my family by and no cooking for me when arrive home from the hospital.  However, I find that it is a bit hard to find meals to freeze as we eat a lot of chicken, fish and vegetables at home!  Vegetables are easy to prep and you can always buy frozen!  I hate freezing fish.  It always comes out watery for some reason! I ended up just make 6 meals and 2 dozen muffins!!

I made:

  1. Chili
  2. Stuffed shells with spinach
  3. Lasagna
  4. Chicken Soup
  5. Bean and Cheese burritos
  6. Pepperoni Pizza
  7. Cheese and Vegetable quesadillas
  8. Banana Bread Muffins
  9. Pumpkin Muffins

To save time and money I made a large pot of chili and chicken soup as I normally do.  What is left over is frozen! It is enough for another 4 large servings.  The pizza and quesadillas were easy as I always have cheese, pasta sauce and naan/tortillas at home.  Use any vegetables or left over meats to make pizzas or quesadillas.  I had a can of pureed pumpkin and decided to make muffins.  My bananas were going bad so I made banana muffins!  The stuffed shells and lasagna I planned out.  I suggest using what you have at home first before purchasing extra food!  This way you save money!

There are many recipes out there but not many that I eat weekly, which is why my list of frozen meals was small.  However, this will help me out the first week at least.  I may end up doing take out a few days and will definitely use my crockpot!

Make sure if to let the muffins cool before freezing and let the air out of the ziplock bag out.  For the lasagna and stuffed shells, wrap in plastic wrap and then cover in foil.  On the foil with a sharpie write down how long to bake.  Make sure everything is dated!

I used my recipes for these and some are Pinterest inspired!

Freezer meals are great for back to school as well for those busy nights, new baby and just because you may have left overs!

This blog is pretty short but straight forward!

I hope I have given you some ideas!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

Homemade Ice Cream

Blog #41:

Homemade ice cream…hmm sounds good but to hard to make.  Do you need extra equipment?  Nope!  Homemade ice cream can be made with just 2 ingredients!  The best part is you can add any flavors to make your favorite ice cream!  The secret ingredients are milk and bananas!  Yes, I know, you can make ice cream with just bananas but I find the ice cream is creamer when milk is added to it.  All you need for equipment is a blender or food processor.

SliceToday I made chocolate ice cream with chocolate chips!  I used a bunch of ripe bananas, sliced them and then froze them.  That is key.  You need to freeze the bananas in order to get ice cream consistency.  You can do this any time and use the bananas later on.  They are great for smoothies as well!  Anyway, if you plan on making ice cream the same day freeze the bananas for a few hours before using.

Put the frozen bananas in a blender or food processor and add milk.  Depending on how many bananas you have.  I actually do not measure but eye ball it.  Usually a 1/4 cup or less if you do not have many bananas.  You don’t want to “water” it down.  Blend and then add flavors if you’d like.  I used cocoa powder to get a chocolate flavor.  2 tbs of chocolate cocoa powder!

Add a little bit of body textOnce blended you will see a creamy shake consistency.  At this point you could honestly have this as a chocolate shake!  If you really wanted to!  If you want ice cream lets head to the next step.  I then mixed chocolate chips and then froze the mix for a few hours.  Scoop and enjoy!!

It is fun to experiment with different toppings and flavors, of course.  My family and I are ice cream people for sure.  There is always ice cream in my home.  We try to eat the healthy versions since we eat ice cream weekly, year round.  Making homemade ice cream is even better when you know exactly what the ingredients are and no added sugar!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

Tote Bag Used as Diaper Bag with ToteSavvy Insert

Blog #40:

I am currently pregnant with my third boy!  This time around I wanted a tote bag instead of a diaper bag.  I’d like to use my tote when I am out without my baby and when I am with my baby.  Let’s face it, unless its date night or work baby will be with me!  I searched high and low for a diaper bag that I can picture myself using for the next couple of years.  Yes, I found some I liked but I did not love.  It seems like the new style is diaper backpacks.  Still I could not find one I loved.

I had been eyeing the new Kate Spade Molly tote for a while now.  Once I found out I was pregnant I decided the tote bag was going to be my diaper bag!  I just received it in the mail today and absolutely love it!  I purchased the all black with the beige, suede interior.  It also comes with a removable pouch.  As you can see in the pictures,  one side has the Spade and the other side says Kate Spade.

I also purchased the Mini ToteSavvy from Amazon.  The totesavvy is an insert that has an insulated pocket for bottles, pockets for diapers, wipes, toys, etc.  It also comes with a changing mat!  In addition to all the pockets it has a clip to attach your keys or wallet!  I am still debating if I want a wallet for this bag is it comes with a removable pouch.  In the pouch I added my card case to make it more neat, so I think that should be fine!

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There are a few different sizes but I decided to go with the mini since I still wanted extra space to add my belongings!  They also come in many different colors to match the inside of your bag!

This is an example of what my bag may look like, minus the bottle since I plan on breast feeding.   I added a baby blanket/teether, diapers, wipes, butt cream, nursing pads, a bottle and hand sanitizer.

inside bag

I am that person that buys something and has to use it right away.  Since I will be using the tote as an everyday bag I obviously have not completely packed it.  However, I will be adding burp clothes, a few wash clothes, a small blanket, an extra outfit or 2 for the baby and an extra shirt for me. I will also carry my personal belongs such as pads, lip balm, eye drops, tissues, etc.

I will have this packed before baby arrives so I don’t need to rush around once doctor appointments come up, etc.  Remember you will be tired!

I plan on making a hospital bag blog as well!  Stay tuned and I hope you enjoyed this blog!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

3 Ingredient Cucumber Salad

Blog #39:

Summer is a time for relaxing and making quick meals.  No one wants to stand over a hot stove with the heat of the summer!

This is one of my favorite 3 ingredient salads I love to make in the summer.  I will say I also like making it in the winter for a quick side dish.  My favorite way of having this dish is with a rotisserie chicken!  This salad makes a great a dish for a BBQ as well! This meal could not be any easier!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cucumbers or one large english cucumber
  • 5oz of crumbled Feta Cheese
  • 2.5oz of sliced black olives

Pantry Ingredients:

  • dried oregano
  • 1 lime
  • pepper
  • olive oil

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Wash, dry and dice the cucumber.  Add the feta cheese and black olives.  Lastly, squeeze the lime, drizzle some olive oil and generously add dried oregano and pepper. Mix and serve!

This serves about 4 for a side dish.  You can double the ingredients to serve more or to make it a main dish.

This honestly takes 5 minutes to prepare!  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

 

End of Year Class Gift Ideas

Blog #38:

Its’s the end of the school year and you are thinking of what to get for your child’s teacher.  I remember the preschool years there was no room parent and I would buy for all teachers that worked with my children.  Now that they are in elementary school it is custom for the assigned room parent to ask for $5-10 dollars (you can ask for $10-20) donation to get a class gift.  Some parents send in a little more.  This year I am the room parent for my older son’s class and I did just that.  Not everyone can donate and so the gift is from all the students, regardless of who donated.  My son’s class has an assistant teacher and a paraprofessional that help out in class.  Therefore, I collected for all 3 teachers.

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The assistant teacher and the paraprofessional are each getting a beach towel with a Food Network Magazine, along with sunscreen, a thank you card and a $25 gift card!  I specifically picked a cooking magazine opposed to an entertainment magazine since you can keep the recipes in it!  I sure keep my favorite cooking magazines!  I created a little pocket using the towel so the magazine would not fall threw and keep the gift tidy.

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This a perfect treat for the summer that the teachers will surely use!

The main teacher is pregnant with her first baby!  Therefore I went for a baby theme.  I purchased a diaper pail and thermometer, along with a thank you card and also a $25 gift card!

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I wrapped it in a cute ice cream cone wrapping paper.  Pregnant moms love gifts for their babies.  Especially when there is so much to buy!

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If you are stuck on ideas, feel free to ask for ideas from the other parents.  Many are glad to help!

The day before I present the gifts to the teachers I send an email to all the parents and thank them for their donations and mention the gift is from the whole class, even if some were unable to donate.  I also attach pictures of the gifts!  Parents appreciate seeing the pictures.

For the bus drivers and after school teachers you can gift something small, like a gift card to a local coffee shop or a cup filled with goodies.  Check out some gift ideas I have done in the past, below:

Wine Gift Basket

New Mom and Baby Gift Basket

I hope this helps you decide on gift ideas!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde

Father’s Day Ideas for Husband

Blog #37:

Father’s Day is around the corner! Finally June and summer weather! There are so many things to so in June to incorporate into father’s day. The last couple of years we have lucked out and gone to the beach.  We are hoping the weather is nice to go again this year. My husband and our 2 sons love the beach. So do I, of course!

Some other things we have done in the past is to make a nice lunch that pairs well with my husband’s favorite wine. Or do dinner. We usually just do something as a family.  This year we plan on going to the beach and instead of making my famous Italian subs I make for our beach lunch, I plan on making lobster rolls! I’ve been craving them!

Some to do ideas:

  • Beach
  • Make a nice lunch or dinner
  • Hike to your local state park and pack a lunch
  • Take a nice walk around the neighborhood
  • Bike riding
  • BBQ

These are our favorite things to do but of course, you can do the movies, restaurant and celebrate with others! We do family time without spending much and not even on purpose! We just enjoy these activities!

For gifts my boys usually make something at school. I usually get something my husband needs. This year I got him a pedicure foot bath. He is very into fitness and his basketball leagues so he is always sore.

Other gifts I have done:

  • Gift certificate for pedicure
  • Gift card to Nike (picky husband lol)
  • Gift card to car wash
  • cleaning supplies for car
  • Reservations to our favorite restaurant (date night)
  • Favorite cologne

My husband is pretty picky about clothes so I do gift certificates to stores or gift things other than clothes! Over all, Father’s Day is so much fun for us all!

I hope this helps you decide what to do for your husband on his special day!

Enjoy!

❤ Azilde