Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans

I've been in love with Michelinas Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans (go HERE for their nutrition facts)frozen lunch for quite and while (and might I add VERY inexpensive..$.88) I dislike strongly eating frozen meals for many reasons.

1. I love to cook and I feel like I'm cheating
2. I don't like eating processed/not the absolute healthiest meals.

However, as a teacher/wife/mom to be/friend/co-worker/daughter/etc my time is not always as I want!  Well, I looked up Santa Fe Rice and Bean recipes and none of them seemed to match my Michelinas meal (at least ingredient wise). So.....I've made my own and HOLY YUMMMYYYYY!

Kate's Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans

2 cups cooked rice (use chicken broth) (I used min. rice)
1 (15 oz.) can red beans (rinsed and drained)
1 cup corn (I cheated with frozen)
2/3 cup green bell pepper
1/3 cup zucchini
1/2 of a jalapeno pepper
2 T green chilies
1 cup sour cream (reduced fat)
2 T milk
2 cups of mixed mozzarella cheese and cheddar cheese (save 1 cup for on top at end)
squirt vinegar
1 t minced garlic
2 T margarine
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp paprika
~~Mix beans, corn, 1 cup of cheese mix, rice in a large bowl
~~Melt margarine in saute pan and add garlic (saute!)
~~Add in all veggies
~~Mix milk, sour cream, vinegar, and spices.  Then add to saute pan.
~~Heat and stir, once mixed add to bean mixture, stir, and pour into 9x13 dish.
~~Put in oven, uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 min. for the last 10 min. add 1 cup of cheese mix on top!
Um...yum! Let me know if you tried it and how it tasted.  Hubby and I used tortilla chips to dip into it even! 

NOTE TO SELF: this is a work in progress since I created it from scratch...I think next time I'll double the amount of sour cream and milk b/c I want it a little more saucy...Hubs liked it just like this! Also, I want to ask my brother-in-law for a great Mexican chicken marinade to add some delicious chicken to this dish!



DIY Wedding {ring bearer pillow}

As I mentioned in my veil and headpiece post I had a collection of my family wedding heirlooms!
My mother made my aunt's and her wedding dresses so we had leftover fabric from each.  I KNEW I had to use it somehow.  I ended up deciding to create my ring bearer pillow form from my mom's fabric, the silk outer pillow from my aunt's wedding dress fabric and a pearl necklace of my grandmas.  I, also, had received as a gift from my bridesmaid Lisa some green ribbon and I used it as my flowers. 
Simple to make, sentimental in value! I made a simple pillow out of the fabric, and hand sewed the pearl necklace on around the edge (the necklace was already tubular in shape).  After I handmade all the flowers and sewed each on to create my little masterpiece for my sweet ring bearer to carry!
..i love it..

after the ceremony
.. son of blogger: squeezing it all in ..

ha...I wear two rings! The diamond and the fat bright sterling silver rings are mine, my hubby's is the one on the bottom left...hammered was one of our 'themes'!
If you need/want more instruction or questions, let me know.  I'd be MORE than happy to help!


DIY Wedding {Veil and headpiece}

I knew I wanted to use vintage items for my wedding....well, since I knew what a wedding was! My mother had saved a bunch of special family wedding items and when I got engaged we looked through the collection to see what could work for mine.  I ended up using a bunch of things, however, today I want to share with you all my veil and headpiece.  My grandmother had used as a veil a white, beaded headband thing with white (since yellowed) toole. 
.Walter and Kathryn Goodin.

.Walter and Kathryn Goodin.
I loved the white beaded piece and knew I had to attempt to make it work.  I hadn't picked a dress out yet, so it was important to take it with me!  My mother was heavily involved with the following process (well, really she did it all, I was WAY TOO NERVOUS with a family heirloom).  She and I called a bunch of different services/restoration specialists.  None of them wanted to
#1 do it themselves
#2 tell us how they'd attempt it due to liabilities
One sweet man (after my mom worked her convincing magic...amazing) on the phone finally explained his ideas on restoration and my mom went to work....bless her!

Pre-Cleaning...upclose...look at that beadwork!
Days, sweat, anxiety and multiple cleaning products later we had what we wanted.

My dear bridesmaid Lisa cut the veil fabric the day of the wedding (no sweat right).  I had ordered Russian netting over the Internet (hard to find here in Cincy).  Lisa cut it for me (I was too nervous) in a big rectangle.

what a great friend....as I laugh at her...
we wrapped this around my side bun and bobby pinned it down
..Tracy putting it all together..
I loved my veil and headpiece and wouldn't change my decision for the world! I meant so much to me to have something of my grandma {who past when I was in high school} ON me for our wedding and could feel her presence and love all day.



Cross Country Friendship Quilters: Finished Blocks

Oh...good ole Labor Day Weekend....I spent many hours at my mother's house piecing away!  I finished all that I could: YAHOO!  I still have to put my quilt together, but it is getting closer to done (and I LOVE it)!!

I'll let you in on some of the pretty things my mom and I have created.  Please keep in mind, I am unexperienced and my mom is well: MASSIVELY experienced!
{be kind}

by: Kate {for Nancy}

by: Kristy {for Nancy}

by: Kate {for Peggy}

by: Kristy {for Peggy}

by: Kate {for mom/Kristy}

by: Everyone! {for Kate, and it's still in progress}

Enjoy! I'm proud of myself (and my sweet, knowledgable momma).