Monday, January 23, 2017

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

I was first introduced to this version of soup a couple of years ago when my cousin Dina made it for us at a party she hosted.  It was so good that I requested her recipe to make it for a party I was hosting a few months later.  It was a hit again.

For the most part, my children are picker eaters. Christopher has gotten better and will eat more but when it comes to soups, neither of them will venture past good ole Chicken Noodle Soup.  I can't blame them really. It was fed to them at a very early age so they were destined to love it like the rest of our family. Perhaps if I pureed all the vegetables in this soup, they might give it a try.  I doubt it but it might be worth a shot.  I'm not sure how corn would puree though (insert weird face look).  I decided since the babies were at their dad's for the weekend and wouldn't be home until after supper Sunday, this was my perfect opportunity to make CTS.

So here is the hit recipe for super simple Chicken Tortilla Soup...

1 lb. shredded cooked chicken
1 can (15 oz) whole peeled tomatoes, mashed
1 can (10 oz) enchilada sauce
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can (4 oz) chopped green chili peppers
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups water
1 can (14.5 oz) chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 bay leaf
1 (10 oz) package frozen corn
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
7 corn tortillas
vegetable oil

Place chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chilies and garlic into a slow cooker.  Pour in water and chicken and season with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper and bay leaf.  Stir in corn and cilantro. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.

As you can see above, the recipe also calls for corn tortillas and vegetable oil.  It instructs you to cut the tortillas into thin strips, lightly brush with vegetable oil and bake in a 400 degree oven for about 10-15 minutes until crisp.  These are to sprinkle over your soup.

I totally went the lazy route and bought a package of these tortilla strip at the grocery store.  They work just as well.

Ta daaaaaaa.....


I added the store bought tortilla chips and some cheese to my bowl of soup.  The only thing missing for me was avocado.  I thought I had some but realized close to supper time I did not and I was not about to get back out in the crazy wind just for avocado.  My soup was still delish and hit the spot for me.  

Friday, January 13, 2017

30 Questions with Bella

As you know, Bella's birthday was Monday. That evening as we were getting ready to lay down, I decided I wanted to ask her a bunch of questions and write down her answers.  I have seen several others do this with their children every year on their birthdays so I decided to do it this year.  I found a list of 20 questions, but found additional questions I liked on other lists so I combined them all together and got 30.

Here are the results...

1.  What is your favorite color?
Pink

2.  What is your favorite toy?
Lil Pets Turtle Tank

3.  What is your favorite stuffed animal?
My big Bella puppy

4.  What is your favorite thing to sleep with?
My mommy and a stuffed animal

5.  What is your favorite fruit?
Green apple

6.  What is your favorite cereal?
Cheerios

7.  What is your favorite snack?
Chips

8.  What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?
Bacon and Pancakes

9.  What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch?
Yogurt

10.  What is your favorite dessert?
Cookies

11. What is your favorite drink?
Water

12.  What do you want to eat for your birthday dinner?
Chick-fil-A

13.  What is your favorite animal?
Puppy

14.  What is your favorite song?
Wildflower

15.  What is your favorite game?
Shopkins Board Game

16.  What is your favorite TV show?
Teen Titans Go

17.  What is your favorite movie?
Monster High

18.  What is your favorite thing to do outside?
Swing

19.  Who is your best friend?
Stella Greak

20.  What is your favorite subject at school?
Reading

21.  What is your favorite book?
The Thank You book.

22.  What is your favorite sport?
Cheerleading

23. What is your favorite holiday?
Christmas and Easter

24.  What is your favorite thing to have for dinner?
Spaghetti

25.  What do you want to be when you grow up?
Art person

26.  What is your favorite thing about your family?
They all love me

27.  What is your least favorite family rule?
Be patient

28.  If you had $100, what would you buy?
Art stuff and shopkins

29.  What are you best at?
Art

30.  What do you like best about yourself?
That my mommy thinks I'm cute



Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Resolutions & Goals

I haven't really made any New Year's resolutions in a while.  The closest I have come was back in 2012 when I set goals for the year.  My dear cousin Dina reminded me earlier this week that last year my goal was "making it happen".  Since our memory's are not what they used to be, we are both guessing that I meant I was going to make all the things happen that I always talk about doing.  Looking back, I may have hit the mark on some and missed it on others but without being specific in my goal of making it happen, I really have no idea if I scored or not.  Ha!  #goodjobmis

After talking, discussing, cussing and reviewing what we want to achieve this year, we have come up with the following...

Dina's goal is: Embrace change, stay positive and get my honkus movin.
She will face a lot of changes and challenges this year so I think her goal is a good one.  Baby steps.

Missy's goal is:  Believe and discipline.
Bella will tell you believe is my word all the time. I guess I say it out loud more than I realize. Discipline is needed in all aspects as well. Its to continue on my path of carving out more time with my kids, organizing and staying organized, spending less and saving more, not losing my temper easily, being a better mom, etc.  You get the picture. I too need to get my honkus movin.  Part of where the discipline comes in and believing that I can make changes.

I just realized one of my making it happen goals that I did accomplish was finally starting the Vyvial Family Cookbook. Yes ma'am.  It will be a slower process than I think any of us would like it to be but its started.  That also reminds me that I have more recipes to add.

I like the beginning of the year when Christmas is put away and the house looks big and clean.  I always want to brighten it up with touches here and there.  Yellow comes to mind at this time every year.  I just feel the need to be bright and cheerful.  Not that Christmas isn't bright and cheerful because it is.  I don't know, maybe I associate yellow with clean because of lemon cleaners, etc.  I don't know y'all, I'm thinking and typing as I go.  I'm a weirdo.  You know this.  I do know I like having everything put away in January and changing things up.  New looks throughout the house.  And I don't mean going out and buying new stuff, I mean rearranging and switching decor up a bit.  Sometimes the smallest change can make the biggest impact.  Pretty profound huh.  Yeah, I'm sure I read that somewhere but its absolutely true.

Before I close, I will let you know that my brother is doing well.  He will begin radiation and chemo treatments January 17.  His treatments will last 5 1/2 weeks (28 days).  He is still making jokes because that is his way of coping, but its also just his way.  We are all serious when we need to be.

Thank you all for the prayers and encouraging words.  They mean so very much to Tony and to our family.


Monday, January 9, 2017

Happy 8th Birthday Bella

Its true, my littlest nugget turns 8 today.  By the time she returns home from school, she will be a year older.  I am still baffled by this.  I mean seriously, look at this sweet baby girl....



And here she is in all her prissiness this morning....




And her silly side...




She is a fun mess.  She's lovable all the time, and not just to me or her family but to everyone she meets.  If you are a friend or acquaintance of mommy's you get a hug from Bella.  That's just who she is.  She is my social butterfly and a fashionista.  Her shirt in the picture says "My Mom Is My Stylist" but she handles her wardrobe most of the time.  She isn't afraid to show her sense of style.  Her brother will sometimes shake his head at her but I love that she is brave like that.  I never was and can still be hesitant in some areas.  Not my girl.  This girl gives hugs and kisses every single day.  She would give them to her brother as well if he let her.  She also tells you she loves you every single day. One of her favorite things is drawing and writing sweet notes to family and friends.  She loves paper.  Daddy and Lena gave her a stationery set with her initial "B" on it and she thinks its the best yet.  Journals....oh my goodness how she loves journals.  She will draw or write in them, and has several. She is very creative and I love that about her. She still has the largest collection of lip gloss and hand sanitizer of anyone I know and her love of jewelry and scarves is growing just like her mommy.  She is always ready to go somewhere, anywhere and loves just being with her mommy whatever I'm doing.  I hope she always likes that.  

Happy Birthday my silly beautiful girl! I hope you have an amazing day.  I love you to the moon and back Boo Boo!! XOXO