Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Annie and John-Mark

What a crazy March!

Our oldest daughter, Annie, got married to John-Mark on March 14th.  We have prayed for John-Mark and this relationship since Annie was born.  We are so thankful for John-Mark and his family!

Who knew (only God knew) that when these two picked their wedding date back in October... for March 14... that they would just on the edge of the pandemic and quarantining.

We got to Waco on Wednesday, March 10th and started enjoying our wedding bubble.   We enjoyed walking through Baylor and just hanging out a few days with Annie and John-Mark.

Annie and John-Mark both went to Baylor.  We just thought Waco was the perfect place for the wedding.  It is central - with me in Omaha and Annie in DC and John-Mark in DC and his family in San Antonio - Waco is the perfect spot!  I am very thankful to a dear friend (sister to my roommate at Baylor) who lives in Waco and was my "go-to" person and and the "save-the-day"person for the wedding and reception.  Thank you Gretchen!

I just want to share a few snapshots taken over the few days.  Most are from iphones by me or friends (mostly dear friend Kathy) and just a few from our awesome photographer., Catherine Coons. Thanks for letting me share!  It is fun to share something so joyful during this crazy time.



Just a little time in Waco - enjoying lunch and shakes and even a walk around Baylor before all of the festivities begin. 

                                                     Rehearsal at Old Bethany with Gretchen

sister of the bride and me
          GREAT rehearsal dinner at the La Fiesta party room in Waco - thank you Clemensons!

           Friends from Texas did a "traveling bridal brunch" and brought it to the Harp Cottage where we were doing hair and makeup.  It was perfect!


                                                                Mom and Bride
 finishing up hair and makeup
                                         Grammy and Meg (another sister) steaming her dress
 First Look with Chris (husband and Annie's dad)

 First look video with bridesmaids and friends
Two roommates from Baylor were bridesmaids
LOVE Annie's flowers - Lauren from Laurel & Finch in Waco
   Meg - sisters were Co-Maids of Honor
Jenna -  sisters were Co-Maids of Honor










  Mr. and Mrs. John-Mark Clemenson

love this cute pic!  Annie got crocs for all all of her bridesmaids for the reception!
 Omaha friends
 Omaha friends meet Texas friends

 




Threw Sprinkles at them when they left....


  Off to Cabo for the week

Thank you for letting me share this God-honoring, wonderful day!  Prayers for this sweet couple as they start their new life together!




Friday, March 6, 2020

Bailey's Irish Cream Chocolate Chip Cookies

I LOVE good homemade chocolate chip cookies - probably one of my favorite desserts.  I follow Baker by Nature on Instagram.  If you like baking, you should totally follow Ashley.  I learned how to brown butter from Ashley... and try dark brown sugar.  You would be amazed how just a few changes make your cookies just that more fabulous.  One of my favorites - Best Every Chocolate Chunk Cookies.  I also absolutely love Salted Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies.


Bailey's Irish cream Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from Baker by Nature)

2  1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp espresso powder
2 sticks butter, at room temperature
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp Bailey's Irish cream Liqueur
2 large eggs, at room temperature

In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and espresso powder, whisk well to combine - set aside. In a separate large bowl, using a hand mixer or in the bowl of stand mixer, combine the room temperature butter and both sugars - beat on medium until light and fluffy, scraping the sides and bottom as needed - about two minutes.  Add in vanilla and Irish cream - beat until combined.  Beat in the eggs, one a time - beating for 15 seconds after each addition.  Turn off mixer and gently fold in the flour mixture, stirring until flour begins to disappear.  For in the chocolate chips.

Cover the bowl and chill for at least 2 hours - or up to three days. (I only had time to chill an hour and they were great).  Preheat oven to 375 and line baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking sheet.  Roll 3 Tbsp size scoop of dough between your palms to form a ball.  (I did smaller and did about 1 tbsp with my cookie scoop). Bake for 8 - 10 minutes - or until golden at the edges.  Don't bake too long.  Allow to cool a bit on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool.

Printable Version

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Taco Slaw (Keto and possibly Whole 30)

Egg Roll in a Bowl from Kyndra over at Peace, Love and Low Carb is one of my very favorite, easy, go-to recipes - and it is dairy free and gluten free.  Chris loves it too.  I think I could make it every week.  Kyndra also makes this Keto Taco Slaw.  This is the 2nd time I have made it and it is also very yummy.  I don't love it as much as Egg Roll in a Bowl but it is still fabulous.  I eat a lot of cauliflower rice to keep dishes low carb so this is a nice change - with the texture of the coleslaw.  You would think the coleslaw would be too soft the next day for leftovers ... but it isn't.  Great texture and great flavor!

I did make Kydnra's taco seasoning.  The Keto Taco Slaw was a little spicy for me so next time I will use less cayenne pepper and possibly mild Rotel in the recipe.  But - I am getting to be a wimp with spice in my old age.

     2 Tbsp chili powder
     2 Tbsp cumin
     2 tsp onion powder
     2 tsp garlic powder
     2 tsp celery salt
     1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
     1/2 tsp black pepper
     1/2 tsp sea salt

Mix and store in air-tight jar.




Keto Taco Slaw (adapted from Peace, Love and Low Carb)

1 lb ground beef
4 tbsp Taco seasoning
1 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chiles, with juices
1 16 oz bag coleslaw mix
1/2 cup sliced black olives
Sea Salt (optional)
1 large avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced for garnish
2 green onions, sliced for garnish
Cilantro for garnish
Jalepeno, sliced for garnish
Sour Cream (optional)
Grated Cheese (optional)

Heat a large skillet over medium heat.  Put the ground beef and 2 Tbsp of taco seasoning in the pan - cook until the meat is browned and cooked through, about 15 minutes.  Drain if needed.  Add diced tomatoes and green chiles, coleslaw mix and 2 Tbsp of the taco seasoning.  Cook until the cabbage is tender, about 7 minutes. Stir in the olives and cook until heated, about 2 minutes.  Taste and add salt if needed. Top each serving with desired toppings - avocado slices, green onions, cilantro and sliced jalepenos.  Sour cream and grated cheese are also an option.  Store leftovers in fridge for up to one week.

Printable Version

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Easy Pizza Dip

As I have mentioned before, I follow a ton of different cooking bloggers on instagram.  I love The Defined Dish for clean, Whole 30 cooking.  I love Baker by Nature for some many yummy cookie recipes.  I also follow The Stay at Home Chef on instagram.  I am always taking a "screenshot" of recipes or saving them.

We were having our monthly preschool birthday lunch.  I "saved" this recipe for Easy Pizza Dip on The Stay at Home Chef's instagram.  We were having a "hodgepodge" birthday lunch so
I could bring anything.  I made it in my cast iron the skillet the night before and baked it at preschool.  They ate every bite!


Easy Pizza Dip (adapted from The Stay at Home Chef)

2  8 oz blocks cream cheese, softened
1 1/3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper (optional or more to taste)
1/4 tsp Italian seasoning (or more to taste)
1  - 1 1/2 cup pizza or marinara sauce
1 cup sharp shredded cheese
3 ounces pepperoni
baguette slices, pita chips or veggies for dipping

Take room temperature cream cheese and mix with 1/3 cup of mozzarella cheese, garlic powder, Parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper and Italian seasoning.  Mix well.  Press into the bottom of a 9" iron skillet or a 9 inch pie pan or a square pan.  Press into a thin layer, even pushing up the sides of the pan.  Pour on 1 cup of pizza sauce.  Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and the sharp cheddar cheese.  Top with pepperoni.  I did another small layer - little more sauce, little more of both cheeses, even added a little shredded parmesan, more pepperoni and sprinkled with Italian seasoning.

Cover tightly if baking the next day.....or bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly around the edges.  Serve warm.  This is especially yummy with the garlic toast slices from your local grocery.

Printable Version