Versatile Chicken


The girls have been sharing our master bathroom for the last 8 years or so. First because they liked our tub better, then because they liked our shower better. This weekend their daddy kicked them out. They’ve been shipped off to their own bathroom. I tired to tell him that was pretty normal these days. It is isn’t it?? It wasn’t an easy transition. There was lots of moping around, followed by “I have to go all the way up there??” It’s a good thing they weren’t born to Aaron Spelling. They’d never survive in that house. I told them I’d pack them a snack, water bottle and flashlight in case they got lost along the way. A few days later it’s actually going pretty well. They’ve stopped complaining and they are actually taking better care of their room. They have even made their beds!

I’m working my way through the poultry section of my Great American Cookbook (adapted slightly). This one is simply called “versatile chicken”. I’m not exactly sure what the “versatile” part means but it was pretty good. I’m leaving the nutritional information off of this one because you don’t use all of the ingredients when you dip the chicken.

4 small Chicken Breasts
3/4 cup Buttermilk
1 Tbs Chicken Broth
1/2 tsp Oregano
1 cup Flour
1 tsp Paprika
1/2 cup Butter, melted

Combine buttermilk, chicken broth and oregano; mix well. Let stand for 10 minutes; stir.

Place chicken in large bowl. Pour buttermilk mixture over chicken until coated. Let it marinate for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a Ziploc bag, combine flour and paprika. Add chicken, 2 pieces at a time and shake to coat.

Place in a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Drizzle butter over chicken.

Bake uncovered for 1 hour or until golden brown. Mine took about 40 minutes.

Servings: 4

Today’s Leopard Print Finds:

Leopard Plug-In Scentsy Warmer on sale for just $18.00 until 8/31/13


Leopard Sink Cool Bath Classy Retro Sign Modern Bathroom French Amazing Bedroom Poster 12X12

Chicken Cordon Bleu


My mom made this for us all the time when I was growing up. It was always one of my favorites. Taylor and Megan have different tastes apparently. You would have thought I served them a plate of snails. It took me forever just to get them to taste it. Megan finally admitted that “it was okay”. Taylor (being the more stubborn one) would never admitted that she liked it even if she did. She picked out the ham and swiss and just ate one bite of plain chicken. She sure was awfully hungry at breakfast the next morning.





4 Boneless Chicken Breasts, split (skinned)
4 Thin Slices Lean Cooked Ham
4 Thin Slices Swiss Cheese
Parsley/Garlic Powder Seasoning
1/3 cup Fine Dry Bread Crumbs
2 teaspoons Vegetable Oil

Flatten chicken breasts slightly with a mallet. Place a ham and a cheese slice on each chicken piece. Sprinkle with the parsley/garlic powder. Roll up chicken to enclose ham and cheese. Blend bread crumbs with oil and place on a flat plate. Press each chicken roll into the mixture to coat lightly. Place on a non-stick baking sheet. Bake 35 minutes at 350 degrees or until chicken is tender.

From my Mama.

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Yellow Box Women’s Acedia Flip Flop

Grilled Peanut Butter Banana Sandwich


You know how you sometimes meet someone who just really leaves a lasting impression on you? Many, many years ago when I was working at the Clinique counter, I met a lady who was one of those people. Turned out she was one of Revlon’s Most Unforgettable Women. I can’t even tell you what it was about her that made her unforgettable, she just was. Today it was a little girl who was about 2. Her name was Bellamia. She was wearing leopard pants. :) She approached me when I was in line at the grocery store and said “Hi, what’s your name?” I said “Beth” and she stuck out her hand to shake my hand and said “Nice to meet you, Beth. My name is Bellamia.” We had a nice little conversation and then she moved on to the next person. I’m guessing it must take her mom at least 30 minutes longer for each errand. She is destined for something big. I figure she has a future in acting, if not then definitely in politics.

2 slices Whole Grain Bread
1/2 Banana
2 Tbs Peanut Butter
2 Tbs Honey

Preheat panini grill.

Spread peanut butter evenly over 1 slice of bread. Cut banana lengthwise into 4 slices. Lay banana slices on top of peanut butter. Top with bread.

Coat outsides of sandwich with cooking spray. Cut in half and place on panini grill; cook 1 minute or until golden. Serve with honey.

Servings: 1
Calories 435
Total Fat 18.3g
Total Carbohydrates 62.0g
Dietary Fiber 7.5g
Protein 14.7g
Nutrition Grade B+

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Nomad Women’s Sunline Cowboy Boot

Chicken Bacon Mac and Cheese


Very productive day…finished up some book fair stuff, vented about a lot of things, movie night and tried to weed out some of the girls books. Taylor is a speed reader so we buy a ton of books. She has decided she doesn’t like her Nook, so that didn’t work out like I had planned. The books are multiplying like bunnies. Now I just need to get her to realize that we really don’t need to keep all of them.

I’ve never met a mac & cheese I didn’t love. This one was great.

8 ounces Elbow Macaroni Pasta
1 slice Bacon
8 ounces Chicken Breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 tablespoon Canola Oil
1 tablespoon Flour
1-1/2 cups Fat Free Milk
1/3 cup Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
3/4 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Colby Jack Cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Monterey Jack Cheese
1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon Dill, chopped
1/8 teaspoon Salt

Cook pasta according to package directions.

Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, reserving drippings in pan. Chop bacon and set aside. Increase heat to medium-high. Add chicken to drippings in pan; sauté for 6 minutes or until done.

Preheat broiler.

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; sprinkle flour evenly into pan. Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Combine milk and soup and gradually add to saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Add onion powder, garlic powder, dill, salt, monterey jack, colby cheese and 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese. Stir until cheese melts. Mix in pasta and chicken.

Spray an 8″ x 8″ baking dish with cooking spray. Pour mixture into dish and sprinkle evenly with bacon and remaining cheddar cheese. Broil for 3 minutes or until cheese melts.

Servings: 6

Calories 347
Total Fat 14.9g
Total Carbohydrates 26.5g
Protein 26.1g
Nutrition Grade B-

Today’s Leopard Print Find:

Gouda Macaroni and Cheese


My two weeks of Book Fair started yesterday. That means two weeks of no exercising. I see lots of juicing in my future. That and a lot of crock pot meals. Yesterday I think I made enough shredded chicken to last for 3 weeks.

I’ve only been allowed to make one kind of macaroni and cheese for the last 21 years because Johnny has the one he likes. But I love gouda and had some I needed to use up. He only complained a little.

8 oz Elbow Macaroni
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
2 Tablespoons Flour
2 cups Fat Free Milk
8 oz Gouda, Grated
1/8 teaspoon Salt
1/8 teaspoon Pepper
1/8 tsp Paprika
2 Tablespoons Breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.

While pasta is cooking, in a large pan, melt butter. Add flour, whisk together until blended. Add the milk and continue whisking for about 10 minutes, on medium low heat, until the mixture begins to thicken. Whisk in the cheese until melted. Add in salt, pepper and paprika.

Add pasta and stir until combined.

Pour into baking dish or individual dishes.

In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and olive oil and mix together. Sprinkle over the pasta and bake 20 minutes.

Adapted from Emeril Lagasse

Servings: 6
Calories 362
Total Fat 15.8g
Total Carbohydrates 36.8g
Dietary Fiber 1.4g
Protein 17.7g
Nutrition Grade B-

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Steve Madden Tote Bseriana Handbag Purse Leopard



I was a little disappointed with the Superbowl commercials. My favorites were the wolves and the Clydesdale. Although I was crying so hard through the Clydesdale one that I missed some of it I’m sure. I don’t know why I bawl like a baby when I see horses. The girls just look at me like I’m crazy. Maybe I am?? I know it’s very normal for people to love animals, but I feel like I take it to the extreme. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of people in my life that I adore and love very deeply, but for some reason in movies I am always more empathetic towards animals than people. Animals just make me extremely emotional. I can’t bear the thought of animals getting hurt, being abandoned or having to leave their person. The very thought of War Horse is enough to make me burst into tears, but I see a person getting shot and it doesn’t phase me. What is wrong with me??

This is great comfort food after a good cry. Really quick and simple to make.

1-1/2 lb Ground Beef
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
2 cups Crushed Tomato
1-1/2 cups Elbow Macaroni
8 oz Velveeta
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions.
Brown meat and drain.
Add salt, pepper, chili powder and tomatoes.
Add pasta and mix well.
Add cheese and simmer until melted.

Servings: 8
Calories 316
Total Fat 11.7g
Total Carbohydrates 18.5g
Dietary Fiber 2.7g
Protein 34.4g
Nutrition Grade B

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Hot Leopard Halter Evening Gown Sexy Long Maxi Dress

Chicken Bacon Macaroni and Cheese


I had to take Megan shoe shopping for the dance yesterday. Not an easy task at all. Bless her heart, she knows exactly what she wants but we can’t find it anywhere. She’s a women’s size 5 (which is hard to find) and the girls shoes aren’t as grown-up looking as Taylor’s (who is suddenly wearing a women’s size 6-1/2). We have one more place to try today. Crossing my fingers that we find something so that we don’t have an unhappy Megan tonight.

You can’t go wrong with pasta, cheese and bacon. This was super yummy. Perfect comfort food for after-shoe shopping.

8 ounces Elbow Macaroni
1 slice Smoked Bacon
1/2 lb Chicken Breast, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 tablespoon Canola Oil
1 tablespoon Flour
1 1/2 cups Fat-Free Milk
1/3 cup Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
3/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese
1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon Fresh Dill, chopped
1/8 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Colby-Jack Cheese, shredded

Cook pasta according to package directions, do not add any salt.

While pasta is cooking, cook bacon in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon, reserving drippings in pan. Chop bacon and set aside. Increase heat to medium-high. Add chicken to pan; sauté for 6 minutes or until cooked thoroughly.

Pre-heat broiler.

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; sprinkle flour evenly into pan. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Combine milk and soup; gradually add milk mixture to saucepan, stirring with a whisk. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes or until thick. Remove from heat and let stand for 3 minutes. Add cheese, onion powder, garlic powder, dill and salt. Stir until cheese is melted. Stir in pasta and chicken.

Spray 8″ baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Spoon mixture into baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with bacon and Colby-Jack cheese. Broil for 3 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Adapted from Cooking Light

Servings: 6
Calories 359
Total Fat 12.3g
Total Carbohydrates 34.2g
Dietary Fiber 1.3g
Protein 26.8g
Nutrition Grade B

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Gloveables Dish Gloves — Red and Leopard with Black Bow

Beef Stew


We didn’t have this for dinner tonight. I wish we would have. Instead I made something with a little curry in it. I learned something about Johnny that I didn’t know before. He absolutely HATES curry. It actually sent him running to the bathroom. I think he was just being dramatic. He didn’t actually get sick. Not quite the reaction I was hoping for when I spent an hour cooking. So the brand new bottle of curry is now in the bottom of the trashcan…. (I should have saved some to spike his food in case he ever makes me mad)

This on the other hand, he loved!

2 pounds Stew Meat
2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
2 cups Water
1-1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
1 Garlic Clove, minced
2 Bay Leaves
1 medium Onion, sliced
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 teaspoon Pepper
1 teaspoon Paprika
1 pinch Ground Allspice
3 cups Baby Carrots
3 Celery Ribs, chopped
2 tablespoons Cornstarch

Warm oil in skillet. Add meat and brown. Add water, Worcestershire, garlic, bay leaves, onion, salt, sugar, pepper, paprika and allspice. Cover and simmer for 1 and 1/2 hours. Remove bay leaves. Add carrots and celery. Cover and cook for 40 minutes.

Remove 2 cups of hot liquid. Using a separate bowl, combine 1/4 cup water and cornstarch until smooth. Mix with a little of the hot liquid and return mixture to pot. Stir and cook until simmering.

Adapted from Paula Deen.

Servings: 8
Calories 353
Total Fat 18.4g
Total Carbohydrates 8.9g
Dietary Fiber 1.8g
Sugars 3.8g
Protein 36.0g
Nutrition Grade B

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Large Rain Leopard Animal Print Women Chic Umbrella with trim

Pimento Cheese Stuffed Fried Chicken


My girls are natural born planners. Not only are they planning for the big game this weekend….Puppy Bowl 2013, but they have already started planning their Valentine box for next year. I’ve been doing a much better job with meal planning. I made the pimento cheese to use for pimento cheese sandwiches, a panini and this awesome meal…Pimento Cheese Stuffed Fried Chicken.

4 Chicken Breasts, boneless and skinless
1 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
1/2 cup Fat Free Milk
1 Large Egg
1-1/2 cups Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
1/2 cup Pimento Cheese
Chives (optional)

Butterfly chicken breasts. Sprinkle each evenly with salt and pepper.

Whisk the milk and egg together.

Keeping the chicken breast closed, dip in the milk mixture and then dredge in the breadcrumbs.

Put oil in pan (about 1/8″ deep) over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in oil for 10 minutes on each side, or until the center is completely cooked.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place chicken on baking sheet and spoon 1/4 cup pimento cheese into the middle of each piece.

Bake for 3 minutes or until cheese is melted. Top with chives if desired.

Adapted from Southern Living.

Calories 625
Total Fat 33.5g
Total Carbohydrates 33.9g
Dietary Fiber 1.9g
Protein 43.9g
Nutrition Grade B

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Shoe Organizer – 20 Pocket in Syle Over the Door Shoe Organizer

Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Stack


My dad is been researching our family tree for months. We had known for years that we are related to John Neely Bryan and that was about as exciting as it got, until a couple of days ago when my Dad discovered that I’m practically Royalty! He discovered we are related to Princess Diana, Prince William and Prince Harry. Which the girls decided is like being related to Ellen since she’s related to Princess Kate. Megan was disappointed that we didn’t discover this before the Royal Wedding so that they would have known to invite us. So from here on out I’ve informed those around me to only address me as Princess or Duchess. Good thing I already had my tiara!

I wonder if they use crock pots at the castle? And do they know how to do Tex-Mex?? I’ll have to work on that when I get there.

1 tsp Canola Oil
1 cup Onion, chopped
1/2 cup Poblano Chile, chopped and seeded
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1-1/2 tsp Chili Powder
14.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes, drained
8 oz can Tomato Sauce
Cooking spray
2 cups Chicken Breast, shredded
1 cup Frozen Corn
15 oz can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
5 (8-inch) Corn and Flour Blend Tortillas
8 oz Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1 Tbs Cilantro

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, poblano pepper and garlic to pan; cook for 6 minutes, stirring frequently.

Stir in chili powder, tomatoes and tomato sauce. Place half of tomato mixture in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining tomato mixture.

Coat a 5-quart round electric slow cooker with cooking spray; place 3 tablespoons tomato mixture in bottom of slow cooker. Combine remaining tomato mixture, chicken, corn, and beans.

Place one tortilla on sauce in slow cooker; pour 1 cup chicken mixture over tortilla; sprinkle with 1/3 cup cheese. Top with another tortilla. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken mixture, tortillas, and cheese. Cover and cook on LOW for 2 hours or until cheese melts and edges are lightly browned. Garnish with cilantro, if desired. Cut into 8 wedges.

Adapted from Cooking Light

Servings: 8
Calories 367
Total Fat 15.0g23%
Saturated Fat 7.1g
Total Carbohydrates 37.8g
Dietary Fiber 8.4g
Protein 27.0g
Nutrition Grade B+

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Faux Fur Throw Blanket – Leopard