Category Archives: Party

Pork Lemongrass Baguette and Dreaming Tree Wine

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I love to make different foods that we wouldn’t normally eat. And this Pork Lemongrass Baguette is right up our alley! We don’t eat a lot of pork and I have been trying to incorporate it a bit more into our meals. But you guys, this recipe calls for fish sauce and if you have ever smelled fish sauce you might be doubting my recipe planning. But I promise you, you won’t be disappointed! Don’t let the fish sauce deter you. I didn’t even say anything about it until after dinner and after I heard all about how delicious it was and then I told my husband to smell it! hahaha!

I also found the most perfect wine to go with our Pork Lemongrass Baguette. The Dreaming Tree Crush is a story of artistry and a wine from none other than Dave Matthews. It was inspired by the desire to make high quality California wines that are accessible to wine lovers everywhere.

The Dreaming Tree makes high quality, delicious wines that are affordable so that anyone can enjoy them. My favorite is the Chardonnay.

I started with using boneless pork chops. I know that might not be the typical meat cut choice, but I wanted something small and thin for a lighter meal rather than large chunks of filling meat. I also took each of those pork chops and cut them in half to make smaller pieces. Then I made my marinade and let them sit overnight in the refrigerator before having my husband bbq them.

While the pork was grilling I sliced some carrots, red onion and cilantro for topping and then put the sandwich all together.

Look at this Pork Lemongrass Baguette…. Are you drooling? Because I am. This was delicious!

The Dreaming Tree has an amazing commitment to sustainable wine making practices and is celebrating donating over $1M to environmental programs that protect tree and forestry programs across the country.

I bought my Dreaming Tree at a local wine store but I have also found it at my local grocery store and supercenter stores. To find where you can buy it- visit their website and type in your zip code… It is that easy!

Another great snack to pair with these wines would be something as simple as cheese and bread or even a popcorn like BoomchickaPop!  It really goes great with anything.

Needing more info about The Dreaming Tree? Find them on Facebook and Instagram

Ingredients:

2 lbs boneless pork chops
carrots
cilantro
(4) 6 inch baguettes
Marinade for pork (recipe below)

Lemongrass Pork Marinade:

1/2 C. chopped lemongrass
1/2 C. sugar
3 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp ground black pepper
2 tbsp soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp olive oil

1. Mix ingredients for marinade together, add pork and let marinade overnight.
2. Next, you want to grill until the pork is completely cooked on BBQ
3. Slice Baguettes in half the long way, adding grill pork, sliced carrots and chopped cilantro
4. Enjoy!

Now you know some of my favorite pairings with The Dreaming Tree Crush, what would you pair with it?

Summer’s Mermaid Birthday Party

Last weekend my little girl turned FIVE years old!

We went back and forth a little on what type of party she wanted, but ultimately settled on a “Mermaid  Birthday Party”.

Thankfully Pinterest is always my friend and guides me to the best of the best crafters with awesome ideas to create a great party.  Here are some shots from the day. And by “some” shots, I mean, I am sorry for an extremely picture heavy post.

Welcome Mermaid sign for the front door.

Summer helped me “design” her very own birthday shirt. She did a pretty good job.

One of my favorite things in our house has always been our chalkboard wall. The kids play on it all the time and it always gets used for birthdays and holidays.

Our party was mid day so we just did some finger sandwiches, and snacks.

I was going to make my own rock candy, but for real, after reading how to do it and that it can take a couple of weeks for the crystals to grow I decided to bag it and just buy them!

How fun are these marshmallow pops? They are super cute and the were really delicious!

The clam shells were also a big hit. It is just frosting in between two nilla wafers and a sugar bead for the “pearl”

Love my sweet birthday girl!

Everyone loves mermaids– What is your mermaid name? Mine is Mara Aqua Rain

I got these hula hoops on clearance a while back so I grabbed them for “party gifts” for the girls!

Last minutes I decided I didn’t want to make cupcakes myself. I was swamped with other things and was just running out of time. Walmart to the rescue and the colors were exactly what I wanted. I made these adorable little cake toppers to go with them.

A pinata was really the only “game” I planned and the kids all left with bags of candy!

Look at all these sweet girls (and one boy!)! I am so grateful for all of our amazing friends that gathered around my girl to celebrate!

After presents and some cake and lots of playing with friends it was time to wrap up our day of fun!

This little Mermaid was as happy as a clam! Happy Birthday sweet girl!

Redneck BBQ

A while back we were sitting around with friends, talking about the summer months ahead and somehow we got on the subject of a Redneck BBQ. Travis and I had talked about how fun something like that might be, so when we were talking with friends we decided we needed to do it!

I headed to Pinterest and did some google searching and found tons of fun ideas. I took ideas from several invitations and made one of our own to fit what we were looking for.  How fun is this invite??

We wanted to make a fun photo booth but was struggling on what exactly I wanted. I thought about making a “mugshot” back ground so people could each hold their own sign for why they went to jail. We also thought about using a piece of plywood and stringing up tin cans, etc. But ultimately just decided to use a backdrop that looks like wood and make some fun signs. Cardboard signs and sharpies make everything a little more redneck.

No redneck party would be complete without “Redneck Win Chimes” and a “Redneck Dream Catcher”

Games really keep a party going so I made “drinko” which is a fun drinking game. Who doesn’t want to Take a Shot or Give a Shot? I also did a Ping Pong toss, an antler ring toss (not shown but we did attach actual antlers to the side of our house and threw rings at them) and a toilet paper toss (also not shown but we used a toilet seat that was attached to a metal bar and we tossed toilet paper rolls  into it.)

When we first decided to do a Redneck BBQ we started talking about what we were going to wear. I immediately knew I wanted to have a “pregnant belly”, cans in my hair, a black eye and a fake cigarette. I also wanted to get a fake ankle monitor but they were $20 on amazon and I didn’t want to spend that much on it!

We found Travis’ wig right away and knew he was going to do cut off shorts, an armband tattoo and another tattoo with names crossed out, but the shirt was a late edition the week before the party. We just had a do it! Thanks Pinterest for that one!

We really weren’t sure if our friends were going to dress up, or to what extent, but when they started showing up at our house it confirmed why these people are our friends!

These three ladies here with me are some of the best of the best. And this picture makes me laugh every time I see it.

Almost everyone dressed up! And it was 95 degrees that day so we were all on fire. That belly I was wearing was a heat magnet!! And my beer can rollers weren’t staying in after a while so I finally had to just take them out!

How awesome does my husband look!?! I can’t stop laughing over his look!

When my friend and her husband showed up we couldn’t believe it. Travis and DJ had never met, but they dressed almost identical! We told no one what we were wearing so it was awesome that they were twinning. Right down to the same wig, cutoff shorts, arm band tattoo and a tattoo with names crossed off. One of the funniest parts was that on their name tattoo, DJ had the name “Daisy” crossed off and Travis had Daisy as his uncrossed off name!

It was such a fun day! Even though it was so darn hot we all had a great time!

Everyone voted on the King and Queen of trash. And Dalton and Faith won! Dalton won a “weener kleaner” and a back scratcher made with beer bottle tops. and Faith won dual back scratchers!

I think everyone had a pretty great time! We eat a ridiculous amount of food, ate twinkies, ding dongs and zingers for dessert, drank Coors light, margaritas and juice for the kids, of course! And visited and played antler ring toss late into the night.  It was a party for the books!

Make your own Gummy Worms

Last year for my birthday, my father in law bought me a gummy worm machine.

I don’t actually eat gummy candy because it has always bothered my teeth, but my family, however, love gummy worms, bears and fish. Especially my husband. So as soon as I got the machine we made our own gummy worms.

Make your own gummy worms

It came with the trays for worms, bears and fish and one giant bear!

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We didn’t waste any time and got to making our gummy candy! The kids thought it was so fun and were excited to make their own candy.

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You just use a box of jello and a box of Gelatine and pour into the little pot. Then occasionally give a stir until the mixture is nice and smooth.

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One it is a liquid you can pour into each of the molds.

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Then you let them sit so they can firm up. And you’ve just made your very own gummy worms, bears and fish.

Now if you don’t have one of these handy little machines (you can get mine HERE) you can use a sauce pan to cook up your mixture and some fun little molds that you find on amazon, or in the Target dollar spot!

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Have you ever made your own gummy worms? How did they turn out?

2016 Year in Review

You guys, January isn’t getting off to a very good start as far as blogging going. I have every intention to blog and I have many posts semi ready to share, however, I just cant seem to make/find time do actually do it. So here we are.

I thought I’d start with a quick 2016 recap.

January we spent a lot of time inside because it was soo old outside! We we to Trav’s work dinner, so I had to go before hand to try on dresses and we spent time with friends. Oh, and worked out.

February warmed up a little and we hit the park several times. I turned 33, We attended friend’s birthday parties, we grew grass just because we can, we did math and I won tickets to a Justin Bieber concert. (And Yes, I was super excited) #noshameinmygame

March we headed to Grandpa’s house for a long weekend, saw a HUGE herd of elk along the way. We went fishing and enjoyed the sunshine, but didn’t really enjoy the crazy wind! We picked buttercups at Papa’s house, we celebrated Daddy’s birthday, celebrated Easter, and I took my niece to Justin Bieber. And yes, I took pictures of him shirtless. (See above hashtag.)

In April we attended Zachary’s track meets, Summer and I had a girls weekend while the boys went to Montana, we spent a lot of time at the park, celebrated Zachary’s birthday, and went to a fun day at Daddy’s work.

May was spent outside a lot! We played at the park with friends, lunch dates with friends, Tyler played T-ball, Zachary ran track, we sent birthday balloons to Grandma in heaven, celebrated Papa’s birthday, ran through the sprinklers and Tyler graduated preschool.

June I got to have a girls night with my best friend, kid less, which never happens! We had a play date with cousins from Seattle, we picked strawberries, we finished up the school year, Summer caught her first fish, I made “best friend” shirts for Summer and I. We celebrated our bestie Haidyn’s birthday, Summer got her ears pierced, We celebrated father’s day, we had a huge storm make it’s way through and we watched my sweet niece Kaylee graduate from high school. We played outside on the slip n slide, saw Finding Dory, we swam in the river a ton, and had a big BBQ with our friends.

July was spent almost entirely at the lake, river or pool. Sometimes with friends, always with family. We watched fireworks with our besties, celebrated a sweet girls first birthday, watched many beautiful sunsets, colored Zach’s hair green, went fishing, picked and canned an insane amount of cherries, went to the local theme park and took a fun ride on a boat with friends.

August was another month outside. Lots of time at a beautiful lake, sprinklers and water fights in the back yard, we make bird feeders, we visited the sunflowers, went to the movies with friends, and spent a ton of time at the park. Tyler got to go to his Kindergarten open house and meet his teacher! Zach and I went to Watershed, which is a big Country music festival. We saw some of our favorites, like Chris Janson, Travis Tritt, Brothers Osborne, Jason Aldean, Eric Church and Keith Urban. It was three days for of amazing music, fun food, rides and interesting people!

September was another busy month. Zach started high school. Tyler started Kindergarten. Summer started preschool.

That’s enough for any mom, right?

We also celebrated Summer’s 4th birthday with a fun tea party full of fun girls. We finally got a new dishwasher after ours went belly up, so we changed out our stove and put in a new microwave while we were at it. We went to the fair, where we rode the rides, ate fun food and fed the animals. Plus, Tyler rode a sheep!

In October Summer and I got to have another girls weekend while the boys went to Montana. (where they caught some huge fish!) Summer went on her first field trip to the pumpkin patch, then Tyler had his first field trip to the pumpkin patch. Zach went to his first high school dance and my little Batman and Cowgirl enjoyed Halloween. Tyler turned 6 and we celebrated by having an awesome Batman birthday party. No superhero party is complete with out capes and masks, right?

In November Summer had career day where a Dr and Cop both came to speak in her class. She loved both and now wants to be both. Papa took Tyler to Dad’s and Donuts at school and taught Summer about birds. We did lots of crafts, celebrated Thanksgiving and Travis did a lot of fishing. He also found this awesome arrowhead! Plus the green in Zach’s hair is just about gone. (yeah, that is something to celebrate!)

December was a cold month! We got a new fridge to match our other new appliances, we went to Tyler’s school friends birthday party, enjoyed Summer’s preschool Christmas concert, had a wonderful long weekend at Christmas and rung in the new year with friends.

We had a wonderful year and I look forward to the amazing memories we are already making in 2017!