Peaches and Pumpkin

Enjoying the sweet and sour in life.

Mother’s Day Gifts from Kids: Free Customized Card! April 27, 2012


Mother’s Day is getting close..so I thought it was the perfect time to share some fun crafts I’ve found (compliments of Pinterest). Nothing is better than a homemade gift, and these ideas were my favorite!

Mason Jar Cookies

I love these! Here are the ingredients: ( this is for just one jar )

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

Combine the flour, baking soda and sugar in a large bowl.  Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to a one quart mason jar. Add the chocolate chips, then brown sugar. Fill the rest of the jar with the remaining dry ingredients.  You can customize your own label for the jar. The instructions for baking are as follows:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Empty the contents of the jar into a large bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, combine 3/4 cup softened butter, 2 eggs, and one teaspoon of vanilla extract. Beat until creamy. Add butter mixture to dry mixture. Stir just until combined. Drop by spoonfuls to an ungreased baking dish.  Bake 8-10 minutes, or until light brown around the edges. Remove from oven. Allow to set for one minute before transferring to a cooling rack. Makes 20.

Baking Soda Molds

Mix one cup of cornstarch, 2 cups of baking soda, and 1 1/4 cups cold water in a non stick pan. Stir until smooth. Cook over medium-low heat until mixture becomes thick, and gunky. Remove from heat, and let it cool while covered. This is kind of like play dough, and will keep if stored in an air tight container for a few days. This also dries hard when left out for 2-3 days. Or you can speed up the process by putting it into a 350 degree oven with the heat turned off. This could be a great idea for handprints, or anything else your mom/grandma would love!

 Handprint bouquets

Perfect idea for a card from the kids. Use different color paint for the handprints, green lines for the stems and any color bow you would like. Another fun bouquet idea:

This isn’t my family…just in case you were wondering! I thought this idea may be cute for grandparents, or great grandparents. Although, would still be cute with just a few flowers.

Free Card:

Here is an offer to make a free customized Mother’s Day card from www.cardstore.com. Create a card, and use the coupon LUVMOM at checkout. This is valid through 5/6/12. This also includes free shipping to you! This is a great website, I’ve used many times. They usually have free card offers around every holiday, so check back!

 

 

 

 

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Buttermilk Cornbread April 21, 2012

Filed under: Favorite Recipes,Side Dishes — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 9:38 am
Tags: , , , ,

Buttermilk Cornbread: This is heaven to me..in a dish. I won’t lie, I ate almost all of it.

This has been a good week for me, according to Brandon. Every night I have made something he loves, and it has turned out great (more recipes to come this weekend)! It makes me really happy to be able to make things from scratch, considering that about 4 years ago, I couldn’t boil potatoes.

 I have a weakness for anything bread related. My sister recommended this recipe to me from allrecipes.com, and it is fantastic… so when I made homemade chili this week, of course we had to have cornbread!

Buttermilk Cornbread

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup corn meal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8×8 baking dish.
  2. Melt butter in a large skillet. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar. Quickly add eggs, and beat until blended. Combine buttermilk with baking soda and stir into the mixture in pan. Stir in flour, corn meal, and salt until well blended. There shouldn’t be any lumps. Pour batter into greased dish.
  3. Bake in a preheated oven 35-45 minutes, or a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.

This goes amazing with chili, so let me know if you would like that recipe! Thanks for reading:)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buttermilk Pancakes


When I posted the Chicken Fried Steak recipe..I told you would share other recipes with buttermilk. The first is buttermilk pancakes!

For the longest time I’ve kept Bisquick mix in my cabinets, and used it maybe once a week for biscuits, pancakes, or an easy ground beef meal. But then I ran out…and had to make pancakes from scratch. I have no clue why I wasn’t doing this to begin with. You can really tell a difference, and it’s not that difficult. Plus, any leftovers I have, I freeze and can microwave for a morning that we are too hungry to wait!

Buttermilk Pancakes

From Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  In a separate bowl beat together buttermilk, milk, eggs, and butter. Wait to mix the wet and dry ingredients until you are ready to start cooking.
  2. Heat a lightly buttered griddle or frying pan over medium/high heat.
  3. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, and use a fork or wooden spoon to blend. Be careful not to over mix.
  4. Pour about 1/2 cup of mix into the heated frying pan. When you start to see little bubbles coming up in the pancake, it’s time to flip it..a minute or so. Brown on both sides, and serve.

A few notes: Do no overmix…it will make take away from the fluffiness (if that’s a word). I noticed in my batter, there were still lumps, but once you cook the pancakes they disappear, so don’t worry about them.

Also..this recipe makes A LOT. I halved it..and it still fed Paige, Brandon and I for two days. While making this yesterday, I halved the flour, got distracted..and continuted adding the ingredients. I didn’t notice I was adding the complete serving amounts until I got to the buttermilk. Don’t do this 🙂

 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Easter! April 17, 2012

Filed under: Staying Home with the Kids — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 8:36 am
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Okay..better late than never. 

Paige with her oversized Easter basket.

Our day started at an all too early 6am. Brandon was first out of bed, and couldn’t wait to show Paige her Mickey Mouse Easter basket. And of course was more than willing to let her eat all of her candy (keeping in mind that at this point, its 6:30 in the morning). Later, we went to have lunch. Brandon’s mother saved me from my cooking plans. Probably for the better… I couldn’t have imagined a better Easter lunch, finished with home-made ice cream!

The guys set out the eggs for Paige to find. She didn’t really get the point that you find all the eggs, then eat what’s inside. I think we spent five minutes at each stopping point, to open the egg, unwrap the chocolate for her, and she would eat it. A little left over evidence here:

Colt slept through all of the festivities. But woke up just in time for a picture!

I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday, and got to spend time with family! Enjoy your week.

Did you do anything fun with your families?

 

Chicken Fried Steak


After making this recipe for the second time last night..I couldn’t wait to share! I’m always on the look out for great beef recipes. With a lot of hunters in our family, and a freezer full of deer meet; I usually substitute ground beef, or beef cube steak with deer meat. You can’t tell the difference.

Anyway, I think the secret to this recipe is really the buttermilk. It makes a huge difference. It’s rare that I buy something just for one recipe, so I was on a search yesterday for other recipes that included buttermilk. This morning we had buttermilk pancakes, and tonight we will have homemade chili and cornbread! I will post these recipes later, because they are just as good!

Chicken Fried Steak

originally from allrecipes.com

  • 4 (1/2 pound) cube steaks (beef or deer)
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce ( i.e. Tabasco)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups of vegetable shortening, for deep-frying

Directions:

  1. Place flour in a shallow bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together baking powder, baking soda, black pepper and salt. Stir in buttermilk, egg, hot pepper sauce, and garlic.
  2. Heat shortening in a deep cast iron skillet to 350 degrees. Dredge steaks in flour, dip in buttermilk mixture, then dredge again in flour. Fry the steaks in the skillet until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes per side. Remove any extra grease by placing on a plate lined with paper towels.

A few things: I didn’t use nearly two cups of flour..and ended up wasting a lot! So I would cut that down, and add more if needed. The recipe also included instructions for a home-made pan gravy. I did this the first time I made this recipe, and it was a disaster! So, I didn’t feel right including it here. Instead, I used vegetable oil to fry my steaks, then cheated and used a package country gravy mix instead:)

Pair this with mashed potatoes and something green..and you have a great meal! Enjoy!

Does anyone have any recipes suggestions for buttermilk?

 

 

Legitimate Ways to Work From Home: Part 2 April 5, 2012


I’ve received a lot of great feedback on my last post about scam-free ways to make extra money. Here are a couple other sites I have found, and use. All of the links can be found on a new page I created titled “Work from home!” (top right, in blue).

1. Care.com: I have actually used this site for 5-6 years, and have no clue why I am just now putting it on here!  Create a profile, and you can then search for families who are seeking a babysitter/nanny, pet sitter, tutor and so on. I have found many jobs on here. Some of them where a one time thing, and others were full-time! Obviously this isn’t work from home, from it can be a side job.

2. Valued Opinions: My friend Alex actually pointed me towards this site, and I’m so glad she did! I’ve already made about $20 from taking surveys within the last week and a half or so. I know that doesn’t seem like much, but it adds up. But beware! The site is very slow, and can be very frustrating!

I also wanted to thank all of my followers, and viewers for voting for me as a Top Mommy Blog!  I’m hoping one day I will be able to make money from blogging, and add it to my list here:)

If you know of a way to make extra money from home, please share! Thank you!

 

Carrot Cake April 4, 2012


I wanted to go ahead and pass along a Carrot Cake recipe I found before Sunday! I found this recipe on Life as a Lofthouse (food blog). She has the most wonderful recipes! We recently made her Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken with Fried Rice recipe…and I could not stop eating it. I think I finished Paige’s plate too!

Anyways..here it is!

Carrot Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups canola oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 5 large carrots (peeled and grated, about 4 cups)
  • 1 cup coconut

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9 inch round pans.
  2. Sift together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside
  3. In a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix together sugar, oil and eggs on low-speed until combined. Mix in dry ingredients just until blended. Fold in the carrots and coconut. Divide the batter evenly in the greased baking pans, and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  4. Cool cakes on wire racks for about ten minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife, then place another rack on top of the cake. Turn upside down, and tap the pan to loosen it. The cakes should cool completely before icing.

Basic Cream Cheese Frosting

From allrecipes.com

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  •  4 cups  confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Beat softened butter and cream cheese until well blended.
  2. Add powdered sugar, and vanilla until creamy.

I showed a picture yesterday of a Bunny Cake. You could use this carrot recipe for it! Once your two round cakes have cooled..place one in the center as a face. Cut two half moons inwardly into the second cake, making a bow-tie and two ears for a bunny. Ice the whole thing, and decorate! You could also make cupcakes. Enjoy!