Wednesday, August 31, 2011

martha moments: tailgating treats!

i will preface by saying that MAN have i been slack with the blog. wow. sorry to any hardcore, faithful followers. i'm sure you're still wiping away your tears of longing for me to come back. :-)

now, onto more important things....FOOD!

as you know, i love me some college football! and one of the best parts of it all are the tailgating foods. i am a dip junkie. i love dips, sauces, snacks, finger foods. i can easily make a meal off of them.

having said that, here's a smorgasbord of some of our favorites. enjoy!

Buffalo Chicken Dip
(my must have, hands down.)

(2) 10 oz. cans chunk chicken, drained
(2) 8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened to room temp
1 cup ranch dressing
3/4 c. Frank's Red Hot Sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Heat chicken over medium heat in saucepan with the hot sauce until heated through. Stir in cream cheese and ranch dressing.  Cook until all ingredients are well blended. Mix in half of the cheese and stir until melted.

Pour into casserole dish and top with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 until bubbly OR transfer all dip to a slow cooker and top with remaining cheese and cook on low until ready to serve.

Best served with celery sticks, carrot sticks and my favorite...Chicken in a Biscuit crackers.

Crockpot Weenies
LOOOOVE these! My grandmama always makes em at Christmas time, but I also love them for tailgating.

2 packs all beef weiners, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 large jar yellow mustard
1 large jar grape jelly

Mix equal parts of the jelly and mustard in crock pot and then add weenies. Cover well to coat and cook on low for 4-6 hours. Serve with toothpicks.

S.O.B. Dip
Stands for South Of the Border, of course....

(2) 8 oz. packages cream cheese
2 cans Hormel chili with beans
2 cups shredded cheddar

Press cream cheese blocks into bottom of large casserole dish. Pour in the 2 cans of chili and top with cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until bubbly. Can top with jalapeno peppers if you wish!  Serves best with scoop style tortilla chips.

Best Crab Dip
8 oz cream cheese
2 T. whole milk
1 T. horseradish
1/2 lb. crab meat
1/3 cup toasted almond slivers
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix everything in small casserole dish and top with almonds. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Serves best with Ritz crackers.

Asian Slaw
16 oz. bag coleslaw mix
1 bunch of green onions, chopped thinly
small package sunflower seeds
small package slivered almonds
2 packages chicken flavored Ramen noodles (just the uncooked noodles...set packets of flavor aside)

1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup white vinegar
2 packages of the seasoning from ramen noodles from above

Mix top group of ingredients except for raw noodles in large bowl.  In another bowl, mix second group of ingredients well and pour over slaw mix. Cover and refrigerate over night. Before serving, add raw ramen noodles and mix well for great crunch!

Cornbread Salad
1 package ranch dressing mix
8 oz. sour cream
2 cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
3 large chopped tomatoes
2 green onions, chopped
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
6 strips cooked bacon, crumbled
1 cup mayonnaise
9' pan cornbread, (i use jiffy mix in the box)
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
2 cups shredded cheddar

Combine ranch mix, sour cream and mayo and set aside.

In your serving bowl, place half of the cornbread, crumbled up.  Top with half of beans.

In medium bowl, combine chopped tomatoes, peppers & onions and layer half of the mixture over the beans. Top with half o the cheese, bacon and corn, then the reserved salad dressing mix. Repeat layers, using remaining ingredients. Cover and chill at least a couple of hours before serving. MMMMM!!!

Goodie Bars
these should be the 8th deadly sin.

1 box yellow cake mix
1 egg
8 T. butter, melted (and yes, that is TABLEspoons...)

8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
8 T. butter, melted (mmhmmm, another tablespoon. )
1 16 oz. box powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Combine cake mix, 1 egg and 8 T. butter with mixer. Press into the bottom of a 13x9 casserole dish.

In large bowl, beat remaining ingredients, adding the powdered sugar in a little a time.  Spread over cake crust in the casserole dish and bake 45 minutes at 350.  Be careful not to over cook em! They're supposed to be gooey in the middle.

Happy Tailgating and happy start to college football season!

Can I get a GO GAMECOCKS?!

Friday, April 22, 2011

tuesday morning goodness

i ran into our local tuesday morning last night for nothing in particular, really.  the store here is very much hit or miss--either i find all kinds of wonderful things or nothing at all.

it was a treasure trove up in the tuesday morning yesterday, i tell ya. it was like a truck carrying a large shipment of fabulous made a stop there.

 loved this lamp with pieces of mirror. could definitely see it with an orange damask shade. 

 ...and another glass mirror mosaic piece. isn't this so pretty? and it's on sale. if there were 2, i would buy 'em and put them in the bathroom instead of one big mirror that's over the sink now.  but, alas, there was only one. i'll chalk it up to one of those "not meant to be's."

lovin' this rug! i tried forever to figure out where to put it and what rug to swap out for a while and let this one in, but it was a realllly big rug and the only place i could figure out where to put it was this blog post!



and this? well, i'm going back to get it today because i just realized how much i love it. i love it for 2 reasons--ONE, it reminds me of water for elephants, which i read a couple of months ago and am going to see it tonight (and i can't WAIT!) and TWO, the lady reminds me of patty griffin, one of my favorite singers of all time.  weird? yes.  going back to buy it in the next half hour? definitely.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

check out my photography site!

seems the photography hobby has taken on a life of its own over the past few months! so i created a website to keep up with client photos, galleries, etc.

check it out!

maybe when i get a little more business, i can buy a domain name that's a little shorter....haha!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

website i l.o.v.e.

not sure how i'm just now discovering this, but i have to share. this website, the foundary, is great--new stuff everyday and good prices on home decor. i ordered a great burlap flour sack pillow a few weeks ago for like $20 and love it.  forgive the poor quality of the's a rainy, lazy morning and quite frankly, i didn't feel like getting the "good" camera out!

so check it out, if you haven't already!

and if you use this link, i get referral credits and will be your BFF forevah.

now if there are any more sites out there like this that i'm missing, you have got to fill me in, people. i know all of the fashion ones, but home decor is where my heart is.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

martha moments: strawberry pretzel salad

i'm usually not one for jell-o (or anything congealed for that matter). the word "congealed" itself just grosses me out...but this dessert salad is one of my favorites!

strawberry pretzel salad

you'll need:
2 cups pretzels, crushed
3/4 cups melted butter
2 Tbsp. sugar
8 oz. cream cheese
1 cup sugar
2 cups Cool Whip
 2-10 oz. packages frozen strawberries
2 cups boiling water
1 large package strawberry Jell-O

To make:

Mix pretzels, butter and the 2 Tbsp. sugar.  Press into bottom of a rectangular baking dish. Cook at 400 for 8-10 minutes.

Mix cream cheese and 1 cup sugar together. Fold in the Cool Whip.  Spread onto cooled crust.
Combine boiling water and Jell-O, then add strawberries.  Let cool before pouring over the top of the cream cheese. Refrigerate to congeal, then slice into squares and enjoy!

Friday, February 25, 2011

the end of '10: the rest of the story

let's just get on with me getting caught up with 2010 already, right? i have literally had zero time to blog lately. but my {march} new year's resolution is to be better and more regular.

(at blogging, that is.)

so, the holidays...same song and dance. they came, they went. so fast, just like every year. i didn't put my "all" into decorating this year because for the first year, we had no family functions at our house. we rotate every year and this was not our year to host anything. it was kind of nice to have the break.

so, rather than blab, let's just relive it in pictures, shall we?

first off, this sweet little niece 'o mine turned 3 months old...(this was technically October).

then we found this jewel of a getaway in cashiers, nc, for a long weekend away. no cell phone reception, nothin. it was WONDERFUL. we built fires, cooked and played solitaire. decor speaking, it was the cutest craftsman cottage you could conjure up. everything about it was centered around loose sticks, twigs and exposed beams. completely awesome.

sweet kyla had her first spend-the-night at my house. we had the best slumber party ever! she had just turned 4 months old here.

2010 was filled with mucho college football. we made several trips down to the "cockpit" as we call it and had a great time cheering on our Gamecocks!

 Thanksgiving at my grandmama's--this is a pretty typical scene after we stuff our faces.

Clemson/Carolina game (if you want to call it that!) at Death Valley this year. Another year of bragging rights for us Carolina fans! No matter win or lose, it's always a great time when you get to tailgate all day long with super food and even better friends!

 mmmm, burgers! a little plug here....these burgers were obviously made awesome because my husband cooked them and he's got burger magic, but they were also divine because we put Tastefully Simple's Onion Onion in them. If you've never had it, you MUST try it. It's a seasoning blend of different types of dried onions and other seasonings. SO.DANG.GOOD. See that pic above? There on the far right is my friend Missy and lucky you, she sells the stuff AND it'll ship straight to you. Here's her website. 
(uh, yes, missy, you owe me. i accept cash and free boxes of your beer bread mix. thank you very, very much.)

now it's Christmas time. look at this baby! and here, she's FIVE months old!

my sweet brother and of the two sister in laws to join my family in 2010. such a sweet little family.

me and the Brawny guy the cutest bearded guy ever....our 2011 Christmas card pic

check it. deckin' the halls involved deckin' Oliver in a super scarf. he definitely rocked it.
(notice here that he no longer resides in that tacky gold frame which has been painted and made into a bulletin board.) he likes his new hang out here on this old wooden door much, much better.

living room Christmas tree 2010. and that wonderful chest of drawers-turned-tv-stand?  craigslist. $65!

dining room Christmas tree...the woodlands, bird, pheasant theme continues in 2010

the paper wreath that i still adore

another house to add to the village, which consists of the other one in this photo. haha. 

sweet MeMa on Christmas eve

world's best mama making the world's best spaghetti

as usual, mama says that she really didn't do that much this year....see for yourself.


WHITE CHRISTMAS for the first time in my life!  it was so pretty coming down.

thanks to santa for a new sister! even if she does resemble an eskimo.

kyla jane's first snow. she watched it for the longest time. 

priceless face on my dear, sweet husband. it looks like the snowman is getting ready to attack him.

2010 welcomed my grandmother into this decade with a new TV!

kyla loved her first Christmas!

sweet Joy. this is the lady who babysat me when I was little. she's a gem.

 there's no place like home in a blanket of snow on Christmas day. perfection~

Thursday, January 13, 2011

the end of '10, part II: October

My brother in law got married on October 10th and I was asked to photograph. I'll let the pics speak for themselves. I just love fall weddings in the south. The out-of-town family got to come down for New York and stay a few days with us and it was so good to see them all and get caught up. Plus it brought a much-needed smile to my face after such a tough September.

she waited...

she smiled...

she walked...

...down the aisle.

he anticipated...

they stood by their man.

she beamed...

they sealed it with a kiss.

they did it!

we posed...
(my MIL, me, new sis in law, bro in law, my hubby and my FIL)

they radiated...

they danced {the thriller dance}...

we lit and released...

they wed.