The Nadel family- Enjoy reading our everyday adventures!


Friday, September 30, 2011

Chicken, Black Beans & Salsa Crockpot recipe

This past week I got another *freebie* cookbook, which makes my frugal heart happy! We're still in the fall baseball mode, and since the weather is cooler, I don't mind grabbing the crockpot and trying out some recipes!

Here is one that I had all the parts in my house to make this week, and it was a hit!
2 pounds boneless chicken (I put frozen breasts in the crockpot on low for a few hours)
1 15 oz can black beans
1 (15 oz) jar salsa
1 (15 oz) can corn, drained (I used frozen)
1 8-oz pkg cream cheese (I used sour cream)

Place chicken breasts in slow cooker, add beans, salsa & corn.
Cook on high about 5 hours or until chicken is cooked.
Turn off slow cooker, but don't remove food. Add cream cheese to top and let it melt over the top of the food, for about 30 minutes.

Note: Shred the chicken before you reheat and use as a dip.

We served this with soft corn tortillas for dipping. We also had corn chips on the side. It would be good with rice. We really enjoyed it!

Simply delicious!

Let me know if you try it! I may be trying out a recipe for beef roast next week...

Thursday, September 29, 2011

American Girl class: Josefina Week 3

This week, our girls read "Josefina's Surprise: A Christmas Story" before class. We discussed the book, and had a lot of fun making Hair Combs for craft! We had hot chocolate with cinnamon for snack, the girls really liked that! Some of them said they had never had it that way, and they really liked it! One girl said she doesn't usually like hot chocolate and she liked this! :-D


We also talked about "Las Posadas" the Spanish celebration of Christmas. We discussed in the book how they celebrated and what the songs were. It was fun to imagine, I wish I could see it in person sometime!

For the combs, they each got a pair of combs (I found a package of 12 at Rite Aid). I gave them 10-12 mini-glue dots, one star rhinestone per girl and a handful of beads. The girls each had a different idea of what they were going to do, and they made some very nice patterns! I showed them a sample hair comb from here, and the Josefina's World book- they were so elaborate and dainty! 

Diligently working...
Gluing beads on...
Modeling her combs, so pretty!
 After we finished the combs, we wrote in our geography notebooks. (See links below) They each colored the state of New Mexico on their U.S. map, wrote a paragraph about Josefina living in New Mexico, and colored the state page (but I forgot to bring the crayons!)
Writing and weaving...
 The 2:00 class...
Modeling her hair comb- so pretty!
Working on the geography notebooks...

And we worked on the weaving project again...
 They are coming along very well! I love seeing all of their work each week. During the weaving, we get to talking, and I love their funny stories!
It was a very fun day, I loved their hair combs! The hour goes by so quickly! We must be having fun!

Geography Notebooks printables can be found here:
USA Map:
http://www.coloringcastle.com/pdfs/us_states/united_states_state_names.pdf

State coloring pages: (We did New Mexico for Josefina)
http://www.crayola.com/free-coloring-pages/social-studies/states-coloring-pages/

State bird and state flower page:
http://www.kidzone.ws/geography/usa/index.htm

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Dino Museum

Since last week was D week in our kindergarten homeschool curriculum, we went to the Dinosaur museum for a field trip! Of course, like a good momma, I grabbed the camera! Here are several pictures of our fun!
On the way in... "A LION car!" our youngest said... "No, It's a DINO car!"
CHECKING OUT A BIG MEAT-EATER!
MAKING DINO TRACKS...

INSIDE THE BRACHIOSAURUS HEART...

FISH!?! "IT'S THIS BIG!" OUR YOUNGEST IS SHOWING US!

DIGGING UP SOME BONES...

PRACTICING HER DINOSAUR ROAR!
THE SPITTING DINO= SCARY!
OUR SON CHECKING OUT THE TRICERATOPS!

OUR SON ALMOST GOT HIS HAND EATEN! ... LOL!

It was a fun trip, and we hope to go again soon! 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Idols?


So I had a little gadget that I realllllly liked. It was my "mini-brain". It was very helpful when shopping, driving, when it was quiet, when I had a spare moment, when I was wide awake at night... I turned to my gadget and it kept me happily occupied. It was my iPod touch. My hubby had given it to me a few years ago when he upgraded to an iPhone. While his iPhone has a camera and sound, I was happy with my iPod.

I liked being able to load it up with music. I liked being able to update my grocery list or calendar at any time. I liked being able to keep track of all kinds of things-- books I'd read, things I wanted to blog about, things to look for in the store, gift ideas for the kids. I didn't need to remember a paper at the store with my list on it. I could just whip out my iPod and check it off there, and not even need a pen! Cool!

Then one day, about six weeks ago, it died. :( I didn't cry, because it is just a "thing". I can do without it, right? What I didn't know is that God had a lesson for me in the death of my favorite gadget. My favorite time-wasting, spare moment filler-upper. While my iPod was a helpful thing, it had gotten to be an idol. I had taken its usage out of hand. Oh, it wasn't in the shape of a cow or "god", but it had taken an important place in my heart and hand.

I wasn't really bowing down to it, but I was giving it a position that it was not to take. I didn't realize all the time that I used for my mini-appliance, I was not using it for other, better, more important things. I was not "having time to read" because I was playing a silly game on my iPod.

I still read my Bible, so I figured I was all right. But God has renewed a love for His Word in me since the death of my idol. It was a thing, and object, and while I knew I should not love an idol, I didn't see it as an idol until it was taken away. Isn't that the way God works?


I realized that I was spending more time on my iPod than with my kids. I played games with them, "in a minute", and "just let me just finish this game..."instead of making them be more important to me as they really are. I was not putting others ahead of myself and my desires. Oh, I believe it is fine to take a little me time now and then. I think there is nothing wrong with playing a fun game on an iPod or iPhone. But if there is someone else around, why not play a REAL game? Then we can even have a conversation! :-D

I am reminded of these verses in God's precious Word...

"Be careful not to forget the covenant of the LORD your God that he made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol in the form of anything the LORD your God has forbidden.Deuteronomy 4:23


"The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god.Psalm 24:4


"All who worship images are put to shame, those who boast in idols— worship him, all you gods!Psalm 97:7


"Their land is full of idols; they bow down to the work of their hands, to what their fingers have made.Isaiah 2:8


So what do you give your time and hands to? Is it for the good of God's kingdom and building it up? Or is it feeding you and your selfish desires? We need to be careful of any form of idol that creeps in to our daily lives! 


I do hope to get another gadget soon, but I will be more conscious of its usage and time spent with it... now to work on my time on the computer... 

Monday, September 26, 2011

How to make your own baby food!

This is a repost from my old blog. I've had several people interested in it in the past, so I thought I'd post it here too. I hope this helps some of you!





How to make baby food
It is really very easy and economical!
Basic supplies: cooking pots, utensils, blender or food processor, ice cube trays, freezer
Here are the steps:
1. Cut and cube the fruit or vegetables you want to cook. Carrots are an easy one to begin with, but they have to be peeled too.
2. Place in a pan of water, enough to cover the veggie. Cover and boil. Reduce heat and cook for 10-20 minutes, depending on how thick the veggie is. Thicker carrots and sweet potatoes take longer.
3. Take the pan off the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes, leaving the veggies in the water.
4. Place cooked food in a blender with some of the cooking water.
5. Puree the veggie, adding more water until it is thinner, like tomato soup.
6. Pour the pureed veggie into ice cube trays (old ones can be found at Goodwill or thrift stores, if you have an ice maker like me!)
7. Freeze the food into these portions. After freezing, put the veggie into ziploc bags and keep in your freezer. Label the bags with what food is in it, i.e., carrots) It is easy to give your baby one, two or three veggie cubes for their meal. Defrost in your microwave in a bowl for approx. 30 seconds.

Note: I do this most often for veggies: carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, peas, green beans (sometimes they are stringy) but also some fruits: peaches, pears, plums, apples. But applesauce is easy to buy in the unsweetened variety and you can feed that to your baby. Fruit does not need to be cooked, but it can be to make it softer. I've pureed bananas too, and added water to them. They are a little thinner and more palatable for the baby. 


MY 3RD BABY- NOT SO SURE
ABOUT SQUASH... (I THINK!)
Sometimes potatoes and sweet potatoes can be too starchy for the blender. You can try those in your food processor on pulse. You can add cereal to the fruit or veggie for variety, or if they don't seem to like it. Also good for thickening it! Hope that helps! It is SOO much cheaper, and healthier for your baby!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Lip Balm Recipe

Last Friday, I posted a recipe for Sugar Scrub from a freebie cookbook that I now own. I was so excited because one of the things that was listed was several recipes for lip balm. I've wanted to try making my own lip balm for a while! I've gotten other recipes for it elsewhere, and just never made the time to try it. I was excited also because the recipe was things that I had on hand in my kitchen!

There are many different oils that you can use in your lip balm, much like my homemade lotion recipe, which you can find here. You can use: coconut oil (which I have, extra virgin is best), sunflower oil, olive oil (which I used), lanolin, shea butter, almond oil, jojoba oil, cocoa butter. If you want healing properties, you can use rosemary extract and/or comfrey.

For my recipe, I used:
1 tsp beeswax beads
1 tsp olive (or other) oil
1 tsp coconut oil (this hardens well, makes it set up)
2 drops tea tree oil (optional)
1 capsule or 5 drops Vitamin E (a preservative, healing for skin)

If you're interested, you can add:
flavoring (peppermint, cherry, grape, vanilla, orange, etc.,)
1 tsp (total) comfrey/ rosemary extract

DIRECTIONS:
Heat oils and beeswax on low-med low heat just until melted. Add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well. Use a dropper to place in tubes or small jars. (I got some at Vitamin Cottage.)


I was amazed how quick and easy it was! I actually doubled the recipe, and filled three small round containers. (1/2 ounce each?) I look forward to trying it again, and maybe adding shea butter next time! It was a fun little science experiment for me! Wish I'd learned something practical like that in high school science!

Let me know if you try it, I'd love to hear your review! Next I may need to try the Chocolate Lip Balm- sounds delicious--I may be licking me lips all the time...

Thursday, September 22, 2011

American Girl class: Josefina Week 2

This week in our American Girls classes, our craft was to make waist pouches, like Josefina wears in book one when she picks primroses. Our pouches were not leather- as Josefina's might have been- but made from vinyl which was easier to punch, cut and fold. 

I pre-cut the fabric for each girl, so the pieces were 16" X 6" and I cut a triangle in one end (measured about 3" down, made a point about 3 " in.) Then I folded them over and punched six sets of holes in each side. The holes needed to match up, and since we didn't have lots of punches or lots of time, I just punched all the holes ahead of class. The girls took some tan hemp, made knots and sewed up each side. There were also two holes near the top for tan yarn to go through- to tie it around their waist. Then we tied another slip-through knot and attached three beads to the tip of the triangle, on the piece that folds over. It gives it a little added weight to help it stay closed.  (I gave each girl one yard of tan yarn and one yard of tan hemp.)

MY POUCH THAT I MADE AS A SAMPLE...
GIRLS WORKING ON THEIR POUCHES...
 We discussed what we could put in the pouches... "All kinds of trinkets!" one girl told me. :-D
ALMOST DONE...
WORKING ON THE WEAVING AGAIN...
MORE WEAVERS!
 Here is the 2:00 class...
SEWING POUCHES- MY "MEXICAN" BLANKET THAT I
BROUGHT TO SHOW A WOVEN BLANKET....
MAKING WAIST POUCHES...
Some of the older girls said, "This is easy!" and just a minute later, one of the younger girls said, "This is hard!" My mom helper and I laughed... they were both sewing up their pouches!
HAND SEWING...
WEAVING BEAUTIFUL PATTERNS!
MORE WEAVING...
HARD AT WORK.... BUT IT'S FUN TOO!

For snack we had Goat Cheese and Tortillas, which moms brought. Most of the girls were not too crazy about the goat cheese! While they were eating, I discussed some of the Spanish words at the end of the book. It was a fun class! I enjoy working with them!

You can see Week 1 of Josefina here.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Joshua's birthday!

Well, almost wordless!

Here are a few pictures from my hubby's birthday this past week...
OPENING MALLORY'S STAMPED CARD!

HIS COFFEE COZY/ COASTER SET THAT REBEKAH MADE...

THE JEWELRY BOX THAT I GAVE HIM...

BLOWING OUT THE CANDLES ON HIS 40TH
BIRTHDAY CAKE- CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI! 
It was a fun day, we had lots of fun celebrating and honoring him!

Also, I had a surprise birthday party/ scavenger hunt at the mall, and we ended with dessert at Dairy Queen. Here is our group of friends/ family at the end of the party:

It was lots of fun-- there were prizes for the winners and the losers! :-D We were glad to spend time with those that came!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"I Am Second"

Jesus is First.
I am Second.

I love the message of the website and movement called "I Am Second." The movement is meant to inspire people of all kinds to live for God and for others. It goes along with the Christian idea of "Jesus first, others next, yourself last = JOY. The website IAmSecond.com has lots of greats stores that are authentic and provide insight in dealing with typical struggles of everyday living.


There are bracelets, handouts, ways to volunteer, and other resources to help you talk about God with others. It may help you realize that you are not alone and if you do go alone, you'll fail. We can only find true peace, hope and fulfillment in Jesus, and letting Him be first in our lives, each and every day.


They have a Facebook page and are on Twitter, which is where I follow them. Their website has places that you can sign up small groups, download materials and order materials. I recently ordered some bracelets and other small items and received them relatively quickly. They also have lots of films of famous people, such as Tony Dungy, Bethany Hamilton, Mike Huckabee, Michael W. Smith, Darrell Waltrip, Jarrett Stevens, Stephen Baldwin and many more. They are real life stories of real people.

I hope you'll take a few minutes to go to their website, watch a video or two, and maybe even order a bracelet. The stories are quite touching, things you may be surprised to hear or learn about... I know I was.

In Matthew 6:33, Jesus tells us to "Seek FIRST the kingdom of God..." In 1 John, the disciple reminds us that, "We love because He FIRST loved us." In Revelation, we hear that Jesus is "the FIRST and the Last." (1:17)


How about you?  Where are you in your relationship with God? Are you first or are you second? Be Second.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Rejoice!

My favorite book of the Bible is Philippians. There are so many awesome verses that really hit home for me from the Bible, and you guessed it- they come from Philippians. I read in Philippians this week and found some verses that spoke to me again. (See my other post here.)
http://www.beinspired-online.com/home/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/rejoice.jpg
In Paul's final chapter to the Philippians, Paul talks about rejoicing. Here is what he says:
"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again, rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (verses 4-7)

What a great perspective that we need to have- one of rejoicing! We're told not to be anxious- but to pray and praise God! Only then will He give us HIS peace... WOW! It is so easy in this world to become anxious about all kinds of little things- illness in family members, or in yourself; friends' troubles; health issues that so many struggle with daily, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes, and so much more! But God tells us that we can find our joy in Him, and peace in HIM alone!

He goes on to say, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy- think about much things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me-- put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you."


There it is again- the promise of peace! Whatever-- that is the kind of "whatever" that I want to think about, not what the teens say these days! :-D Paul goes on to talk about rejoicing more in verses 10-11, and 11-13 says, "I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. For I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."


In America these days, there is not much that we need or really even want. My dad is a good example of this-- when you ask what he wants for his birthday, he says "Nothing. I have everything I need." So many of us do not know what it is like to be hungry, we don't skip too many meals. But there are times in our lives that we learn this, whether in early marriage or in between jobs, we may be short of cash, and need a loan. We may overextend our credit cards and need to pay them off, which takes time and discipline. But we can get there. So are you content with all you have? Don't get caught up in the worldly view of needing "More" to be happy. God is MORE than enough. Be content with all you have.

Here is a link to a song by Chris Tomlin about that very topic...
http://vodpod.com/watch/4193044-chris-tomlin-enough

Friday, September 16, 2011

Frugal Friday- Sugar scrub recipe

This last week, I got a free download for a recipe book filled with great recipes, as well as tips'n'tricks from LivingOnADime.com. (You can find my post about them here)

INGREDIENTS ASSEMBLED...

In it there was a great recipe for Sugar Scrub that you can make it home. It is VERY easy!

Get out a small container, such as Tupperware. Put into it 1/2 cup of sugar and 4 oz of your favorite scented shower gel. Stir it together. Put a lid on it and put it in your shower right away. Next time you're in the shower, spread it on your arms for some exfoliation and rejuvenation!

I told you it was easy!
The whole recipe book is filled with such recipes as this one. I may try making lip balm next!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

40 things...

Today is my wonderful husband's 40th birthday! For his birthday, I made list of 40 things that I love about him! It was fun to think about and find a new way to honor him!


Here is the list that I made for him:

40 Things I Love about You

  1. Your sense of humor
  2. Your willing smile
  3. Your cool old car (not the color though :-D)
  4. Your clean-shaven face
  5. Your family
  6. Your musical talents
  7. Your computer skills
  8. The work you do around the house
  9. The way you are with our kids
  10. The leader you are in our home
  11. Your math knowledge (and correcting papers)
  12. You’re a hard worker
  13. Your love for our Lord
  14. That you’ve stuck with me through the ups and downs
  15. Your kisses :-D
  16. Your cleanliness, esp. in our room and the garage
  17. That you take us on Sonic or Starbucks runs
  18. That you coach baseball
  19. Your taste in music
  20. The great memories we’ve shared
  21. That you manage our money
  22. Your preppy sense of style
  23. That you love to find good $ deals too!
  24. That you built a chicken coop (without really knowing how!)
  25. That you like to make coffee
  26. When we have coffee on the deck together
  27. Snuggling during a movie
  28. Your computer wizardry
  29. When you make me breakfast
  30. You appreciate art and music
  31. That you don’t mind watching sappy movies with me
  32. That you weed and pick the garden
  33. That you don’t remember sports stats ;-D
  34. The way you look dressed up
  35. That you remember our “important” dates/ anniversaries
  36. All your 5,000 parts...
  37. That you give me back rubs.
  38. That you pray with and for me.
  39. That you are loving and kind to all ages. 
  40. That you love me! 
And many, many more!!

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