Monthly Archives: September 2014

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Twisty Braid Hair Tutorial

braid hair tutorial

Working in an office where I see clients most days gives me the opportunity to do fun things with my hair.  I don’t want to constantly be wearing the same hair style day in and day out.  Nor do I want to look childish by having immature hairstyles.  So, I’m constantly coming up with different ways to style my hair.  This morning I came up with a new one and I have to say – it’s probably one of my favorites.  It took no time at all and it stayed in all day, which to me is a bonus.

braid hair tutorial

I came up with this great twisty braid hair tutorial that is super easy.  Here’s what you need:

1) straightener (if you feel like you need it)
2) 3-5 bobby pins
3) comb
4) hairspray (optional – I didn’t use any, but my hair is pretty thick)

If your hair is wavy or needs a little straightening then go ahead and do that first.  I went to bed with my hair up so I had a few creases to work out.  Take a comb and part your hair heavy to one side.  I did a deep part on the right side (facing me it’s the left).
braided hair tutorial
Next I took a small section about 2 inches from the forehead and braided it.  Pin the braid in the back.  Next take the section that’s remaining near the front of your head and twist.  Twist until it wraps around and meets the braid, and pin.  Add 2-3 more pins until you feel that it is secure.

Slow Cooker Taco Meat Recipe

I found out you can make taco meat in the slow cooker… what?!?  I was shocked, excited, and couldn’t wait to try it out.  Then I learned it was super easy and then I decided to make it the very next day.

slow cooker taco meat

I used my own taco seasoning recipe to save on all of the sodium, plus it tastes better than the pre-packaged junk.  You can double this recipe then freeze the leftovers for another day.

crockpot taco meat

While it’s cooking the meat will look a bit watery, but that’s okay.  You’re going to strain it once it’s finished cooking.

crock pot taco meat

 

This is the finished product – looks pretty good for not taking too much effort to prepare.  You might have to break it up a bit, at least I did.

slow cooker taco meat

Ingredients for slow cooker taco meat:

1 lbs. lean ground beef
1 serving of taco seasoning (or 1 pre-packaged seasoning)
1 cup water
whatever toppings you like

Place your meat, seasoning, and water in the slow cooker.  (I used completely frozen hamburger meat.)  Turn to low and let cook for about 6 hours.  I came home on my lunch and started the meat then after 4 hours I switched it to medium for the last hour, but you don’t have to do this if you want it to cook for the full 6 hours.  Then strain the water and juices, break up the meat and create your tacos!

 

 

 

I’m linking up with Sweet Bella Roos, Katherines Corner, A Handful of Everything, and All Things With Purpose.

My Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

homemade taco seasoning recipe
If you want something easy to make for dinner then try this homemade taco seasoning recipe.

J and I love Mexican food.  He could probably eat it everyday for the rest of his life.  I couldn’t eat every day, but I do really love it.  I ran out the pre-packaged taco seasoning the other day and decided to try my hand at creating my own.  Of course I scanned Pinterest and found a few that looked pretty tasty.  I squished the recipes together and added my own flair to come up with a homemade taco seasoning recipe that can’t be beat.

Here’s what you need for this yummy, can’t get enough taco seasoning recipe:

½ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. onion powder
½ tsp. oregano
2 Tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. ground mustard
½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 tsp. of both salt and black pepper

Mix the ingredients together in an airtight container to store any leftovers.

Add 2-3 tablespoons of this homemade taco seasoning along with ¾ cup of water to one pound of cooked ground meat (beef, turkey, or your choice).  Allow to simmer over medium heat, stirring until there is little liquid left.

J likes things spicy and I don’t.  So if you like your tacos abit on the spicy side just add more red paper flakes and chili powder.  For a real kick you could always add a little hot sauce to the ground meat.  But I’m not that brave!

Later this week I will be showing off how you can make your taco meat in your slow cookerwhat?!?! I know, I was so happily surprised by this revelation that I cannot wait to share it!

10 Fun Fall Date Ideas

Fall… it’s my favorite. I love big sweaters, boots, scarves, and the crisp autumn air.  I would rather be in 60 degree weather then any other.  I believe that fall is the best time to come up with some fun date ideas for couples to do.  J and I always seem more adventurous in the fall than any other season.  Probably because the weather doesn’t make me sweaty and sticky, plus you don’t have to have heavy, bulky coats on to enjoy your day.  Fall is upon us.  Happy Dance!  The cool air screams get close to your husby, hold hands and walk in the sunlight.  Love!

date ideas
Here are some fun fall date ideas to celebrate with your spouse and enjoy the best season EVER.

1) Check out a festival.  We love the Apple Butter Festival in Kimmswick, MO.  Tons of vendors, ice cold beer, fried food galore and a whole day of wandering around a small town.

2) Go on a hay ride.  Sometimes the best date ideas are the ones that come in groups.  We love to be wit friends and nothing beats taking an afternoon out in the hay field.

3) Wander around a corn maze.  Around Southeast Missouri and Northeast Arkansas you can find some great corn mazes.  I can’t wait for J and I to spend an afternoon getting lost.  There are even some haunted corn mazes around, if you’re into that.  I, sadly, am not into being scared out of my mind while having no idea how to escape.  It’s not my thing!  But I do enjoy a relaxed afternoon of figuring something out together.

4) Go check out a pumpkin patch.  I loooove pumpkins and I loooove pumpkin patches.  There are tons and tons of pumpkin patches and some even have little food and drink vendors setup.  You can make a day out of trying to find the perfect pumpkin.

5) Carve a pumpkin.  This one goes with the previous date idea, but I like to treat it as a whole separate event.  In my world, carving pumpkins is a serious game and it’s not to be taken lightly.  If you’re not into carving a pumpkin then you can paint one.  I’ve seen some pretty ones on Pinterest and you can be really creative without all of the mess of the pumpkin guts.

6) Go apple picking.  J and I went last year to a neat place right outside of St. Louis and it was a blast!  We took a tractor ride out to the orchard and spent awhile picking apples straight from the trees, we got to taste the most delicious and juiciest apples ever, then we headed back to the place where they had rides, a petting zoo, a market and tasty BBQ.

7) Order take-out and head to the local park.  Sometimes it’s nice to be outside and it’s even better with good food.  Around town there are quite a few parks and I have the cutest picnic blanket that still has the tags on it.  I’m imagining ordering the best food in town, grabbing some wine (and beer for J), then heading to the park for a late lunch.

8) Hit the walking trail with the pups.  Our dogs love to be outdoors and with the cooler temperatures fast approaching, it’s a lot easier to be outside for longer.  Taking them for a walk will give us a chance to talk, share stories, and just be together.

9) Attend a football game.  J loves football and I actually enjoy watching it.  Fall and football go hand-in-hand, so there is no better time to check out a game.  We can go to the local high school game for a cheap date night or we can drive to Columbia to tailgate and watch a Mizzou game.  Either way, we’d be together and having fun!

10) Light the fire pit and roast marshmallows.  Spending a night at home, sitting around the fire pit with hot dogs, s’mores, and hot chocolate would be wonderful.  It’s easy to get caught up in date ideas that can cost money or take you out of town, but to me the simpler the better.  Spending a night at home, wrapped up in my favorite blanket, with the dogs playing in the backyard, sitting next to my husband is the best.

Do you have any fun fall date ideas to share? I would love to hear them and add to my list.  Fall is my favorite and I can’t wait for the hot, humid days to be behind us for another year.

 

 

Photo by DColeman Photography

 

Our Newest Addition…

Bud_sleeping Bud Bud III_edited Bud_edited

J and I have expanded our family by one… a hound-mix that we named Bud.  AHHH! He’s just so cute and cuddly.  So Thursday morning I get a call from J telling me about a dog that had been dumped at Kroger and was wandering around the fuel pumps.  He went on to say they had called the pound over an hour ago, but no one had showed up.  THE POUND?!??! The pound in town is awful!  Dirty, dark, and very rarely does a dog get adopted.  I went running into my Dad’s office with tears in my eyes asking what I should do.  J is the logical one, the sane one, the realistic one… I’m not.  So for him to literally say “go get him.”  I had to.  Just had to.  I pulled up and there he was sound asleep in the hot sun.  I scooped him up with more tears in my eyes and drove straight to our vet.  He was checked out, given shots, and flea treatment… now he’s home.  We named him Bud Weiser.  Don’t judge – J works for an AB distributor.

Maggie_edited Tiny_edited

The other two dogs are taking their time getting used to their new brother.  Tiny wants to play, but she doesn’t realize just how much bigger she is.  Maggie … oh Maggie, she licks his face and wags her tail, but she needs to realize that she’s still the queen bee.
Bud's paw