Monday, November 29, 2010

Streuseled Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

I found this recipe in Cooking Light and thought I would try it out. It was pretty easy to make (I took some shortcuts) and it made a TON!

Streuseled Sweet Potato Casserole
About 5 pounds of cubed, peeled sweet potatoes
1/2 cup half and half
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
cooking spray
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chilled butter, cut in small pieces
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Put potatoes in dutch oven, bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 12 minutes until tender. Drain.
Combine half and half and next four ingredients (half and half through egg) in a large bowl. Stir with a whisk. Add potato to egg mixture. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Spoon potato mixture into 13x9 pan that is sprayed with cooking spray.
Combine flour and sugar in food processor; pulse to combine. Add chilled butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in pecans and sprinkle over potato mixture.
Bake covered for 15 minutes. Continue cooking uncovered for additional 25 minutes or until topping is browned and potatoes are thoroughly heated.

**I used the Ore Ida Steam and Mash Sweet Potatoes instead of peeling my potatoes and cooking them! SO MUCH EASIER! **

**Also, recipe can be easily halved for less servings**

Sunday, November 28, 2010

An Afternoon in Savannah though Caroline's Eyes

On our way home from Hilton Head, we stopped in my FAVORITE city and spent the afternoon. SAVANNAH! I would love to live there!!! Anyway, Gene had never been so Caroline and I decided to show him some of our favorite things. The majority of the photos were taken by Caroline, so I thought I would label the post "....through Caroline's eyes".

We are eating at one of our favorite restaurants in City Market...Tapas Caroline caught Papa eating some yummy She Crab Soup!!!
A snapshot of me waiting on my yummy She Crab soup!
Caroline's view of City Market...isn't it beautiful?
She remembered her carriage ride and desperately wanted to go on another one!
She said this was her 'favorite' horse
The fountains at Ellis Square. Last time we were here, it was under construction

Posing with her lollipop in front of Riverstreet Sweets
A real 'pirate' ship that we got to go on a tour...VERY cool!
Relaxing in front of the Waving Girl Statue
Caroline is telling Papa all about the history of the Waving Girl
The boat Caroline said she bought for Papa and Nana....yes, we wish! ;)
This is a REAL pumpkin sitting in front of a restaurant...couldn't help but pose with it!
I did NOT want my pic taken but when your daughter begs...You give in :)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Halloween at Hilton Head Island

Caroline and I spent Halloween weekend at Hilton Head Island. I had two furlough days on that Monday and Tuesday, so we packed up and off we went. We were joined by my mom and Gene and had a GREAT time! We arrived late Friday evening so we unpacked, got some sleep and woke up early on Saturday morning. Caroline had such an awesome time and LOVED playing in the sand (her favorite thing). I got some much needed relaxation and even got to read a book! There are tons of pictures and I will post a few more of our quick stop in Savannah that Monday.

Sunrise on Saturday morning...I could totally wake up early if my view looked liked this!
Seeing the beach on Saturday morning
Looking at her new beach toys and dishing out orders!
One of my favorite photos!

Dancing for us in the sand

Posing for us while we wait to do a bit of Trick-or-Treating at the Marriott

My happy, dancing little diva

Trick or Treating at the Marriott

Caroline LOVED rolling around in the was EVERYWHERE!

Doing a bit of swimming
Completely tuckered out after a long day at the beach

Gingerbread Playdough Recipe

For the next three weeks of school, I am doing something entirely new and needed some fresh ideas. The first week, I am doing a gingerbread unit and the next two weeks, we will be 'traveling' around the world exploring how Christmas is celebrated.

I decided to make gingerbread playdough for each child to use during literacy and math centers. We will be spelling our 'snap' words and completing math problems with our playdough! Each child will be receiving their own special baggie (to help with the spread of germs) and I can't wait to see their faces.

This playdough was SUPER EASY to make and I even had all the ingredients in my pantry. I made some for Caroline and immediately she ran to get the rolling pin and baking sheet!! So cute!

Gingerbread Playdough Recipe
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tsp cream of tarter
1 cup water
1 tsp vegetable oil
LOTS of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, whatever!
Mix the dry ingredients. Play with the spices to get the scent/color you desire. Mix water and oil FIRST, then mix with dry ingredients. Stir together. In a pot, cook over low/medium heat, stirring frequently (about 2 minutes). The dough will start to pull away from the sides and clump together. Take the dough out of the pan and knead until soft and smooth. Allow to cool and store in an air tight container.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Perry, Georgia National Fair (October)

Back in October, we went to Perry, Georgia to the Georgia National Fair. We had a blast! My sister, brother-in-law, and niece went with us. We saw lots of exhibits including Sea Lions, an exotic animal petting zoo, a circus, Austrialian animals, and lots of livestock. We spent the entire day and had a great time!

Eating her hamburger in the Circus
Enjoying Aunt Sissy's cotton candy!

Loving her first ride on a pony!

Kissing her pony good-bye

After the pig races (yes, I kid you not), Caroline spotted this pink camo 4 wheeler. She was super excited about this little toy!

Disney Princess on Ice

On November 12, we took Caroline to see the Disney Princess on Ice. It was so much fun! We decided to NOT tell her where we were going but to just surprise her when the show began. I took the advice from Tammy and brought two of Caroline's princess dolls (Belle and Snow White) with us so we could avoid buying 'goodies'. We had awesome seats and got them at a super price!

I cannot even begin to describe Caroline's excitement when the lights went off and the skaters took the ice. She started shaking with excitement and pure joy! For two hours, she never took her eyes off the rink and wanted more when it ended! As soon as we got back into the car, she immediately crashed and I grabbed some java for some quick energy to drive back home.

This is at the end of the first half when the princesses (minus Cinderella) were skating. You can see how close we were to the rink.

Princess Jasmine...the first of the Princesses to skate

Holding up her Snow White doll when Snow White took the ice!

Posing for a pic before the show started