End of the School Year {2011} + A Free Printable

Kate's school year ended this week
(I still have 2 more weeks left....Summer is almost here!)
Kate loves school & was so sad it was ending.
She has just thrived in the school setting this year.
Look home much she has physically grown this year:
And, here is a "self portrait" that she did in school the first week & the last week.
I can't believe how much her art has improved in 9 months!
In honor of the last day of school, we made her teachers some gifts.
I totally dropped the ball during Teacher Appreciation Week & didn't get them any presents.
Mom Fail. Mom who is a teacher FAIL.

I asked Kate what she wanted to make her teachers & she said cupcakes.
(We make a lot of cupcakes around here!)
So, we made Mason Jar Cupcakes.
So easy to make. You make any flavor cupcake.
I made my Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes.
Take them out of the liners, place one at the bottom of a mason jar, add some frosting, add another cupcake & then more frosting.
I added some mini chocolate chips on top for fun:
Then, put on the lid & add some ribbon for decoration.
I also made personalized stickers for each jar:
And, I added a spoon so they can eat it right then :)
I had Kate decorate the bags as her "Thank You Note"
She had a fun year of school & had really great teachers.
She is already asking when school starts again.
She told me yesterday that she loves school so much and wants to be a teacher like Mommy when she grows up.
And, she wants to be a swim teacher in the summer.
(First, she needs to learn how to swim!)

I still can't believe how fast this school year went for Kate.
Hoping the next 2 weeks fly by for me!
It has been a LONG week for me at school, this 3 day weekend has come at a perfect time.
Hope you have a nice Memorial Day Weekend.
So thankful for those who have risked their lives for our freedom.

And, don't forget to come back Monday for "Mel's Favorite Things Birthday Giveaway!"

Here is the printable for you to use!

Vanilla ButterCream Frosting Version:
{Click to download. Right click & then Save.}

Coffee Buttercream Version:
 {Click to download. Right click & then Save.}


My first (and last) post about Oprah.

Today is the day.
Oprah's final show.
In college, I have fond memories of watching Oprah everyday at 4pm after soccer practice.
And, during the summer after college, I would get home from working at soccer camp and relax by watching Oprah.
Before we had kids, I would come home from school & everyday at 4:00 I would sit on my couch drinking a Diet Coke, eat Wheat Thins, grade math tests and watch Oprah.
Pretty much every single day. Ahhh..those were the days. Ha!
But, since having the girls, watching Oprah everyday has certainly not been a priority.
I just don't have time to watch her everyday.
So, I just DVR episodes that look interesting.
But, now that is all coming to a close.
My Bucket List item of being an audience member at the Oprah show isn't going to happen.
Have you been watching this week?
Will you watch her farewell show today?
You could make some cupcakes & these Oprah cupcake toppers.
LinkAren't they awesome?
I will miss Oprah's different hairstyles.
I will miss her fun & entertaining guests.
Do you have a favorite Oprah show?
My favorite one was the 2 part series on Hoarders a few years ago.
And, of course the Tom Cruise jumping on the couch one was hysterical (and embarrassing)
I will miss Dave Letterman telling Oprah jokes on the Late Show.
And, of course I will especially miss her "Oprah's Favorite Things Show"
Those were the best!
Speaking of Favorite Things....be sure to check my blog next week.
In honor of my birthday next week, I will be doing a "Mel's Favorite Things Giveaway" on Monday! You won't want to miss out!


Easiest Dinner Ever.

Get ready for one of the easiest meals ever.
This is the most viewed recipe on my blog. You either love it or your hate it :)

Of course it involves the crock pot!

I have also converted this to an Instant Pot recipe, Click HERE for the Instant Pot version.

Here is what you need:
- Bag of frozen Chicken Breast Tenderloins (2.5-3lb bag)
- 8 oz block of cream cheese (don't use Fat Free! 1/3 less fat or regular is fine)
- Can of Black Beans, drained & rinsed. (or Pinto Beans if you prefer)
- Can of Corn, drained.
- Can of Rotel

Put frozen chicken in the crock pot.
Put Cream cheese on top of the chicken.
Dump in the Black Beans (make sure they are drained & rinsed!!!)
Dump in the drained corn.
Dump in the Rotel,
Cover & cook in your Crock Pot on low for 6-8 hours.
Every 2 hours, I stir the ingredients.
You can shred the chicken when it is done, or just leave it as tenderloins.
This is what it looks like after 6 hours:
I turn the crock pot off & let it sit for about 30-45 minutes.
It is a little soupy, but letting it sit causes it to not be as soupy.
I serve this over rice. The rice soaks up some of the soupy-ness.
It makes a lot, it feeds 6-8 adults. You could have it for dinner a couple nights & for lunch.
I actually like it better on the 2nd day, when it isn't as soupy.

UPDATE MAY 2017: I have also converted this to an Instant Pot Recipes....click HERE to see the Instant Pot directions for Easiest Dinner Ever! 

So, you could make this the day before & then keep it in your fridge overnight.
When we have it on a leftover day, sometimes I combine the rice & the cream cheese chicken mixture and use it for burritos. Add a tortilla, some lettuce, cheese & salsa.
Easy. Good. Healthy.
And, you could use pinto beans instead of black beans.
Make a tostada or a rice bowl.
So many options!
Whatever floats your boat!

I don't even have a name for it.
I call it "Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken"
But, it is like Cream Cheese Chicken Goodness.
Call it whatever you want. It is yummy & so easy to make!

***Edited to Add***
Some of you have said there isn't much of a kick, so if you want to add more flavors, you can add a packet of taco seasoning, or a packet of dry ranch dressing mix, or use Hot Rotel (or Hot Salsa).


Here's Hoping....

....that gas prices drop this summer.
I just paid $75 to fill up my car & it's not even 3/4 full.
Ouch. One of the "perks" of living in California, I guess.
I'm curious....what are you paying at the pump?


Two Steps Forward. One Step Back.

I want to thank all of you who left sent me emails and left comments on my last blog post about Claire's Terrible Two's.
It is comforting to know that we aren't the only ones going through this.
But, on the other hand, I am sorry that so many of us are going through this!
Motherhood is the hardest job ever.
It is worth it, but seriously. So hard.
A lot of you had great book recommendations, so I am buying a couple more books!
Our weekend was good. Claire's behavior was some of the best it has been in a long time.
I know she likes it when we don't have to go to work & there is no schedule.
Kate likes structure & schedules. Claire? Not so much. She is a free bird.
We spent a lot of time outside on Saturday & Kate has finally learned how to swing on her own!
Can I get a Holla for no more pushing her on the swing?!? She is so proud of herself!
And, in the same day, she learned how to use the rings & go from one ring to another.
I think it is time to sign her up for gymnastics!
We did some planting & yard maintenance.
The girls are officially obsessed with filling up their buckets & watering cans with water so they water the garden.
It is amazing how much our garden has grown in a few weeks!
Before church on Sunday, Kate asked me to put curlers in her hair so she could have curly hair.
Poor thing has really fine hair (like me) and it doesn't hold a curl at all.
This is her 5 minutes after taking the curlers out.
Her hair was totally straight. I feel your pain, sister!
Kate had a birthday party on Saturday and Sunday, so Kate and I got a lot of 1 on 1 time which meant that Claire got a lot of 1 on 1 time with Kevin.
1 on 1 time with your kids is always a good thing.
It made me realize how much they need it.
We got to enjoy sunny skies this weekend, but don't let that fool you.
It was really cold and really windy.
And, today....the rain came.
It rained on and off all day.
And, literally, there was a dark rain cloud over our house.
The weather was fitting for the moods of the girls.
It was another rough afternoon of no naps.
I totally lost my patience with both of them because they wouldn't stay in their rooms for naptime & they both had complete meltdowns later in the afternoon.
I totally lost my patience which made me even more frustrated & disappointed in myself.
Two steps forward, one step back.
The weekend was good. Monday? Not so much.
When Kevin came home from work I was D-O-N-E.
He took over & did the whole bedtime routine while I gave myself a Mommy Time Out.
Can I get an Amen for that?
Tomorrow is a new day. It will be better.
So thankful His mercies are new each morning!


Two. It's Terrible.

Terrible Two's? Check.
Lately, we have been seeing a lot of this face around our house.
Kate didn't go through the terrible 2's, but Claire?
Oh my word.
She is MORE than making up for that.
Kate had her moments at 2, but with Claire the terrible 2's "moment" has been going on for months.
The past few months with her have been rough.
Really, really, really rough.
Claire is full of life...she is a fun little girl.
She is SO stubborn. And, doesn't listen.
She picks on her older sister.
She can be sneaky & disobedient.
You tell her to do one thing & she will look at you and do the opposite.
She likes to do things her own way & by herself.
Don't even think about helping her brush her teeth, get into her car seat, etc.
The world will come to an end if you cut her sandwich the wrong way or give her the wrong color sippy cup.
When she is upset, she can throw some serious tantrums.
It is really hard to calm her down & reason with her.
(Kevin does a much better job at this, she responds better to him mid-tantrum)
The past few weeks she has worn me out.
Since we got her the Big girl bed, her naps are short (if she even takes one)
It has been trying on my nerves & my patience because she just won't stay in her bed for naps.
When I get home from teaching 160 middle schoolers, I am worn out & have no patience left as it is. And, trying to deal with a non-napping 2.5 year old, just does me in and literally brings me to tears some days.
I would love some prayer for some patience because mine is non existent (especially on those non napping days) Come 5 pm on those days, meltdowns from both girls (and me!) are in full effect.
And, with summer less than a month away (Praise the LORD!), I want to make sure that I am doing everything I can to be the Mom that Claire needs me to be. If not, it is going to be a long, hard summer. I want it to be a fun, easy going summer. Not a summer filled with Claire in time out for hitting her sister (again)
These books that I am reading:
If you have any other parenting books that worked for you, I would love to hear about them!
Seriously, I need all the help I can get with this one.
I love her with all my heart, but she is really giving me a run for my money and making me feel like a Mommy Fail at times.
I am hoping this stage will be over soon, but I am going to need a lot of prayer (and wine!) to get through it!
Even though Claire is in the middle of the terrible 2's, she really a fun kid.
Her sense of humor is beyond her years, she cracks us up.
And, she is so loving toward her dolls and friend's babies. She is such a nurturer.
Claire, I love you....But please, please, please start listening & obeying!
Love, your Frazzled Mommy


10 on 10 :: May 2011

Ten on Ten: 10 pictures on the 10th day of the month!
{Document a snapshot of your life & find beauty among the ordinary things in your day!}

Here is my 10 on 10 for May!
Our day was not very exciting. At all.
(So, I decided to edit the pictures in a fun way since our day was so normal)

Kate eating Cheerios for breakfast:
I have a Luna Bar everyday for breakfast before 1st period starts.
My new favorite flavor? White Chocolate Macadamia. It is SO good.
Grading ABC of Pre Algebra books that my students have been working on since last week.
I will be displaying them at Open House on Thursday!
My hydrangeas are about to bloom...I can't wait!
I LOVE hydrangeas, we have 4 of them in our front yard that produce beautiful blue flowers.
A little afternoon snack for me.... Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs!
The best Easter Candy there is! I stock up on them after Easter & then I keep mine in the refrigerator. They taste even better cold!
Boulder relaxing after a long afternoon of barking & chasing squirrels in our backyard.

While the girls played in the backyard, I inspected our garden & we have a couple of strawberries that have sprouted! So fun!
Hope you had a great 10th....this time next month will be my first day of Summer Break!!!!
I can't WAIT! Summer can't come fast enough!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin