Thursday, June 28, 2012

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Well if you're anything like the husband and I, we LOVE Panera Bread, especially their broccoli cheddar soup. Each time we go, we always get a cup of soup with our sandwich.  So, tonight I decided to give it at try and see if I could make something similar to it. I have looked online for recipes and the one I found seemed pretty good, although I did tweak it a little bit and doubled it so we could use it as leftovers tomorrow. The recipe below will be what I used (that includes it being doubled, so if you want less then just cut it in half).

What you will need:
2 cups of half and half
2 cups of milk
1/2 cup of flour
4 cups of chicken stock
2 whole slices of onion
2 clove garlic
1/4 cup of butter
1/2 lb of fresh, chopped broccoli
1 cup of carrots chopped and shredded
1/4 tsp of cardamom
1/4 tsp of nutmeg
salt and pepper
8 oz of sharp cheddar cheese shredded
4 oz of colby jack cheese  shredded

First start out by chopping up your onion. Put the butter, onion and garlic clove in a pot to sauté it for awhile on medium heat
Once that is going, you can start to cut and chop up the broccoli and carrots.
After about 5-10 minutes, go ahead and add in the flour, milk, half and half, and chicken stock, stirring occasionally until it's almost at a boil.

Next add in the carrots and broccoli then bring it to a low heat to simmer for 20 minutes.  Then, add in the cardamom, nutmeg, salt, pepper, and cheeses and keep on a low heat for additional 10 minutes.

It's really up to you on how much of what you add in depending on what you like, but this could be a good starter.

Then enjoy!
(ignore the time stamp on these photos, I was using our smaller camera that Matt took with him during his deployment, so it's a bit off.)

Mm, soup and turkey wrap!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Oops, I've been slacking on updating about my 30 day photo fun challenge..  Well,  here is the past week and a half.
June 11 - Silhouette  (it was hard to take one so I just made one using photoshop that I took at the gym, hah)

June 12 - Sun Flare

June 13 - Reminds you of your childhood.
   Yes, I still have this keychain from when I was around 8 or 9 years old. At the time, we were living in Alabama. My dad is a big Redsox fan and they would be playing in Atlanta to go up against the Braves. So, my dad and I made it into a father-daughter day where we went to the city and watched the baseball game. I remember I didn't like to sit through the entire game so we ended up walking around the stadium a bit, but it was a good day! I still remember what I wore.

June 14 - Someone you love  (he actually sent me this today in HI!!)

June 15 - Action  (project I'm working on before hubby comes home)

June 16 - Mason Jar/ Jelly Jar

June 17 - Bokeh  (I didn't take this image, I actually am not sure how to create bokeh and I have been a bit lazy today so for today's challenge I am skipping!)

June 18 - Eyes

June 19 - Summertime    (New bikinis!)

June 20 - Water

June 21 - Micro  (Welcome Home is spelled out in red, white, and blue glow sticks on the garage.  Unfortunately they didn't light up at night due to him coming home in the afternoon, but it was the thought/idea that counted)

June 22 - Landscape

June 23 -  Black and White

June 24 - Love

June 25 - Citrus

June 26 - Favorite Color   (Really love these color combos of our couch pillows)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Twix Ice Cream Cake

Who doesn't love cake and ice cream? Who doesn't love the both combined?? Well, I know I enjoy ice cream cakes and the hubby really does. So to switch it up this year, I decided to make an ice cream cake for his birthday.

He had a very special birthday due to him coming back home on the same day as his birthday! It was definitely a great day.
Anyways, I'll write more on that another time but here is a quick step by step instruction if you want to do it yourself for a special occasion or maybe just because!

What you will need:
1 bag of candy (any of your choice, but I used twix)
1 tub of cool whip (12 oz or 16 oz)
1 jar of carmel  (12 oz I think)
12 ice cream sandwiches or if you want a larger cake, then use 24
1  8x11 pan (if using the 12 sandwiches, otherwise you'll need 9x13)
Foil (optional)

Well, you don't have to line your pan with foil but I did because I didn't want the sandwiches to stick to the bottom, but then again I have come to realize it's worse when it sticks to the foil, although it is easy to remove. So if you want to just skip the step of laying foil down, then that's fine too.

Then cut up your candy into smaller pieces so they are prepared to go. I think I only used maybe 7-8 of the bite size candies, so you won't need the full bag but that's a personal choice. This was a hard part to not eat any!

 Ice Cream sandwiches, unwrap them from the wrappers. I only took 6 out of the freezer at a time because I didn't want them to melt

Lay them across in the pan

Layer the cool whip on top the sandwiches

  Then take your carmel, get it a little warm and put that on top of the cool whip, I mixed it in a bit throughout to give it a swirl effect.

Lay twix (or candy of choice) on top of it all

Then repeat the process one more time and make the top a bit more "appealing" and decorative. Then put foil on top of it and stick it in the freezer to enjoy later!

And here are a few from his birthday

Crazy to think he's 25… Even crazier to think I've known him since he was 16!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Fourth of July Wreath

Well, I finished yet another craft project that I've been wanting to do for some time now. I have always wanted to make a wreath but never got the courage to do so, and possibly the time. But, just the other day I managed to finish a wreath just in time for the hubby to come back home and the celebration of Fourth of July. This idea is not my original idea, I got the idea from online.

So, here is how I made this wreath… P.S: It does tend to be tedious work.

What you will need:
4 blue felt
3 red felt
3 white felt
1 white foam
1 styrofoam wreath (make sure it's the round hard one and not the sqaure/round one… otherwise you probably have to do this project twice ;) Lol if you catch my drift… learn from the person who made the mistake.)
push pins (300 count)
hot glue/glue gun

I got all my supplies at Joann's but Michael's or any other craft store should have all you are looking for as well.
In addition, the felt make give or take depending on how close or far apart you put your pieces.

To start off, cut your felt into 2x2 squares. It doesn't have to be down to precise science, but as long as they're roughly the same size than it will be okay. A trick I did was after I cut my first 2x2 square, I would move it up right above and then trace it out with my scissors and kept repeating that over and over that way I wouldn't have to remeasure the length.

 Fold it corner to corner

 Then fold it to the other corner

And finally put a push pin in

 To start out, put all the corners together like I have shown before. But once you get going, you can just put them in a row.

 Now that you have started with the four corners, you can start to place one of the pieces right behind the one already pinned into the wreath. Make sure it's not too far apart otherwise it won't look full and leave a gap, but you don't want it too close either because then it will get too bunched up.

 Showing you how to lift the piece up and placing it

See, I started to line it up rather than start another 4 piece square. You will continue doing this all the way around with your colors. You can either do 2 red, 3 white like I chose or you can do 4 white, 3 red  and make them smaller groups.. it's totally up to you to make your own. Just make sure the blue one is the largest of them.
Also, when you are pinning make sure you pin on the inside of the wreath and on the outer side of the wreath that way it is not shown. It really isn't necessary to pin the backside since that won't be shown and it can lay flush against the door, but if you are feeling up to it - then go right ahead.

After you're finished pinning, go ahead and cut out your stars, you can make these as small or big and as many as you like. Hot glue them onto the blue felt and then you're ready to attach your ribbon on the backside to be hung.  I like my ribbon shorter so it's not hanging too low but you can do however you please.

This project probably took me about 3 hours or so in one sitting (I don't think I recommend this Lol)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Such A Large Ocean

To continue on with the 30 day fun photo challenge, here is day 8 through 10.

Fresh fruit

Sunset (I couldn't decide between the two)

Animal.  Yep, a bird. I don't see animals that often so this will have to do. 

When I went to the beach the other day, it was such a great feeling to just sit there in the sand and look out into the ocean, feel the cool breeze and hearing the waves crash and think about nothing else except for in that moment.  It actually helped relax and rejuvenate me a little bit. Of course thinking about nothing only last for so long with me (haha) so I started to think about my husband and even though the Pacific Ocean is very large, at that particular moment it didn't quite feel that way because I know he's coming home soon and that we were looking out into that same exact ocean just thousands of miles apart.

And speaking of hubby, here is an article from the ship he is on that he was quoted in. Apparently, one of the female co-workers he works with, her mom made a bunch of quilts for each of the people she works with, with their names on it and Matt said a few words.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Books & High Angle

 June 6 -  Books.   Hunger Games - finished the series last night :(  I recommend it!

 June 7 - High Angle.

Click the link to check out the start of the 30 day photo fun challenge for June

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

30 Day Photo Fun

Well,  I started another photo fun challenge like I did last year; which you can view the start of that one  here. This one should be a lot of fun because it's leading up to the arrival of my husband coming back home.
I finally had a chance to sit down and type this post up, so here are the photos that I have taken so far on June days 1-5
Self-Potrait.   At the gym

Favorite Shoes.     Prada heels hubby bought me last year


Clouds.  Southern Cali hardly has clouds, but if you look closely squint there are small ones.

Breakfast today.  Don't you just love life? ;)

Hopefully I'll be able to update one a day, but it may be a few at a time depending on my schedule and time available.