• Dill Pickle Pasta Salad

    I feel like pickles are one of those foods that people either love or hate. I don’t hear people say often that “pickles are okay”. Do you? Everyone in my family loves them! And when I was pregnant with Tyler I ate hamburger dill chips like they were going out of style. I would take a tupperware container of them to work with me and eat them all day long.

    And I will eat them in any form. Dill, sweet, bread and butter, relish…. I love pickles!

    I made this Dill Pickle Pasta Salad for the first time last year after going to a bbq and wanting to bring something different from my ordinary salad choices.

    It was a total hit and I ended up making it many more times over the summer because we just couldn’t get enough of it!

    You guys already know that things that are easy to make are my jam! And this one is no exception. It is one of those salads that you toss everything in a bowl, mix and stick in the fridge to chill.

    Now we haven’t had it all winter long and I know as the weather warms up more and we start to bbq more often I will be making this Dill Pickle Pasta Salad again.

    • 8 oz. dry pasta (about 3 cups)
    • 3/4 c. sliced pickles
    • 2/3 c. cheddar cheese , diced
    • 3 Tbsp chopped onion
    • 2 Tbsp fresh dill
    • 1/2 c. pickle juice

    Dressing:

    • 2/3 c. mayonnaise
    • 1/3 c. sour cream
    • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
    • 4 Tbsp pickle juice
    • salt & pepper to taste
    1. Boil pasta according to package directions. Rinse with cold water.
    2. Pour a 1/2 cup of pickle juice over the cold pasta, mix and set aside.
    3. After a few minutes drain juice from pasta.
    4. Mix all dressing ingredients in a small bowl then add to pasta, mixing well.
    5. Refrigerate at least one hour to chill before serving.

    What is your favorite way to eat pickles? Or do you like them at all?

  • Ranch Pasta Salad

    It may only be February, but I am dreaming of sunny days full of hot hot sunshine. Anyone else?

    Winter hasn’t been near as bad as past years, but I will take the heat over cold any day of the week. And because our summers fly by, I am making plans already to fill my days with lounging at the lake, relaxing in the back yard with a cold drink and lots and lots of play dates with kids screaming with laughter as they slide down the slip n slide.

    One thing we do a couple times a year is have back yard bbq’s with our family and friends. And I am always looking for the perfect BBQ food! Pasta salads are always a must and this BBQ Ranch Pasta Salad is definitely a favorite.

    Originally I found a recipe for BBQ Ranch Pasta Salad over on Spicy Southern Kitchen, but after I couldn’t find the same dressing I had to change things up a bit.

    Ranch Pasta Salad

    And because I had never had the original dressing, I wasn’t missing out! This dressing was delicious!!

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    It really couldn’t have been easier to make! Which are another favorite things of mine! Quick and easy pasta salads are awesome!!

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    This is all of the ingredients mixed together except for the pasta and corn chips.

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    • 16 oz pasta, cooked per package direction – I used elbow and sprial because that is what I had!
    • 1 cup of Southwestern Ranch Dressing
    • ⅓ cup sour cream
    • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
    • 1 cup canned corn, drained
    • ½ red bell pepper, diced
    • ½ small red onion, finely diced
    • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    • 1 cup corn chips
    1. Place cooked pasta in a large bowl.
    2. Stir together dressing and sour cream and pour over pasta. Mix together
    3. Add all remaining ingredients, except corn chips, and stir to combine.
    4. Refrigerate until ready to serve and sprinkle corn chips on top just before serving.

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    I wish I had gotten a better picture of this when I originally made it! Because this picture doesn’t really do it justice!  Maybe next time!

    What is your go-to pasta salad?

  • Favorite Things {SIC Cup Edition}

    This post has been compensated by IHelpMoms.com and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

    I love coming across awesome products. And these SIC cups from SIC – Seriously Ice Cold – are amazing. I have had my SIC cups for just a couple of weeks and I am obsessed. Zach asked if he could have one of them and I haven’t let him yet because I can’t decide which one I am willing to part with.

    Anyone else out there like me with a cup obsession? If you do, try these SIC cups, you will not regret it and you’ll immediately have a new favorite cup. One of my favorite things about them is how long they keep things warm or cold. The last few weeks of soccer have been pretty brutal with how cold it was during practice and games. I loved that I poured hot tea into them before I leave the house and long after I get home my tea is still hot!

    Since I most always have a cup of ice water near me I love that my 30 oz tumbler will keep ice for 24 hours! Luckily I haven’t had a reason to need ice in a cup for 24 hours yet, but I am thinking ahead to summer days at the lake with my ice cold cup of water while I am playing in the hot sun. (Yes, I know it is only November and I am dreaming of the hot sun… It is the only thing that will get me through the cold winter that is ahead of me! Guys, it is 18 degrees outside as I type this, so let a girl dream!)

    These are the three that I have:

    A 27 oz SIC Bottle, a 12 oz wine/coffee/cocktail cup and the 30 oz tumbler. Any guesses which is my favorite?

    Check out my Instagram page where I will be sharing which cup is my favorite!

    And how fun are these colors? Salmon, Seafoam blue and white. I love everything about them and I’m drooling over all the other fun colors!

    Feel free to check them out the SIC cups in the Ihelpmoms Holiday Gift Guide as well —> HERE

    A few of my favorite things about the SIC cups:

    • They stay super hot or super cold for ridiculous amount of hours! (24 hours ice cold is awesome!)
    • There are a ton of fun colors like salmon, orange, lemon and sea foam blue.
    • They fit in your cup holders – even the bigger cups!
    • Lifetime warranty – Do I even need to say more?
    • These cups don’t sweat!

    Something else that I thought was cool is that these cups are powder coated, not painted. Which makes them less likely to scratch or chip. And the surface is perfect for putting a decal on…. I’m already trying to decide what I want to put on it!

    Right now you can get a 15% discount on your own SIC cups by using code: ihelpmoms

    So now that you have the code, which cup do you want to get? Leave me a comment below! 

     

  • 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!

  • 10 Ways to get Mom Time during the Summer

    This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.  #CraftYourCool #CollectiveBias

    School is out, kids are home and your “mom time” just went out the door. Am I right?

    Today I put together 10 Ways to get Mom Time during the Summer. I’ll be sharing everything from my Starbucks® Bottled Dulce de Leche Frappuccino® Coffee Drink 13.7 oz Single Serve item only (not available in 4-pack) to Bubble Baths. 
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    I think sometimes people have a preconceived notion that because I am a stay at home mom it means I have all the down time in the world. I recently have a friend say to me, “I’d love a month of not doing anything.” when I said I was looking forward to summertime.  Now don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of time for sun bathing and binge watching my favorite shows, but I am running to swim lessons, play dates, sports and mall drop offs.

    So having mom time has to be carved in just like the kid’s events. And that is why I wanted to share a little of what I am doing to share a little of what I am doing to still get some time to myself.

    1. Wake up Early
      Getting up early isn’t something I love to do. I consider myself an early bird but that is still 7 am. And getting up before my kids rarely happens. So I like to grab some coffee and head out to the back deck and enjoy a little bit of quiet before we start out day.
    2. Go for a Walk
      In one way I am pretty spoiled. With Zach being 15 now he has become a pretty reliable babysitting source. So it doesn’t take much for me to grab my shoes and head out on a walk. Which leads me to my next one….
    3. Go to an exercise class.
      Maybe you don’t have a built in teenage babysitter, but even if you don’t, recruit a friend to watch the kids for an hour so you can hit the elliptical or do some Zumba.  Still not workable? Grab an exercise DVD and hide in your room to do it!
    4. Get yourself an Adult Coloring Book.
      I won’t lie, I am not a good colorer. I don’t stay in the lines well. But I was surprised at how relaxing is was. You could even print off some pages from online and enjoy the time.
    5. Read a book or magazine.
      I’ve always been a reader. I got that from my mom and ever since I was a kid, reading is something I have done a lot of. This year is the first year I have actually set a goal for myself, which was 30 books. And so far I have done pretty well, despite an couple of them dragging on and on.
    6. Relax in the sunshine.
      Nothing makes me happier than a beautiful day full of sunshine. And taking my current book and a blanket out to relax in the sun is one of my all time favorite things to do.
    7. Put on your favorite music.
      Lounging in the sun, hanging out at the river…. it all goes hand in hand with music. Turn it up and belt out those tunes.
    8. Spa Day.
      To me a spa day doesn’t have to mean some expensive, fancy place. For me it means relaxing, getting my nails done, toes painted, a facial… All things I can do in the comfort of my own home.
    9. Bubble Bath.
      I am not really a bath person. Maybe because growing up we never had a bath tub, only a shower. But every so often a bath just sounds so nice and relaxing. And it is always accompanied by my current book.
    10. Schedule some girl time.
      Grab your bestie and hit up a current chick flick, or have a coffee date. When it comes to you and your best friend I’m sure it doesn’t take a lot to have a fun and relaxing time. It is great to have play dates and all but don’t forget adult time too!

    One sure way for me to relax is to grab a nice cold drink and sit back for a few minutes. Luckily I can get the new Starbucks® Bottled Dulce de Leche Frappuccino® Coffee Drinks at Walmart and they are the perfect size. These single serve drinks are perfect for our on the go nature, ready for me to drink right from the bottle with the pop of a cap and come in other flavors.

    Also if you Buy 3 Ready to Drink products get 35 stars, which if you are a Starbucks Rewards member you know how fast those stars can add up and that makes for more Mom Time!

    What are your favorite ways to sneak in Mom Time during the Summer when your kids are home?