Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Pi Day!

Did you know there was a celebration of Pi??

For those who don't know Pi is is a mathematical constant approximately equal to 3.14159265.

So, March 14th (314) is the official Pi Day holiday.

And, of course, as with any holiday, it deserves celebration...don't you think??

Oh, by the way, hubby is a huge computer/math/science geek, and is slowly turning the five year old into another science geek (on the list for birthday #6; a mad scientist party). So, celebrating Pi Day makes sense for us. ;o)

Plus, it's a nice excuse to make (and therefor consume) fun, yummy stuff.

Like these Pie Pops.

I've seen these floating around the internet for years, and have been wanting to make them for sometime. I always thought I'd make them for Thanksgiving, but then they always get moved to the bottom of the list, after all the regular foods getting planned out.

These are really easy to make, super-duper cute and yummmmy!

The world's cutest two year old showing off how good these are to eat!


Pastry dough (I just use the refrigerated stuff)
Pie Filling
Melted butter
Sanding sugar
6” Lollipop sticks
Cookie cutter

Apple Pie Filling: (combine all ingredients below):

1 medium tart green apple, peeled and grated
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon cold butter, grated

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat if desired.


Cut out your shapes of choice (try to keep it 2” or under; too big and they'll slide off your stick, too small and you won't be able to put much filling in)-I used circles so they looked like little pies.

Spoon about 1-2 tsp filling to middle of shape (leave about 1/4” around edge to prevent seepage)

Add lollipop stick to middle of shape, place near top of 'pie.'

Dip your finger in water and run around edge of shape. Do the same for another shape, then place on top. Gently press around edges to seal.

Using a fork, crimp around edges, making sure to seal around lollipop stick.

Brush with butter and sprinkle with sanding sugar.

Bake pies for 15-20 minutes until barely golden brown. Cool for a few minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.

We sprayed on some whipped cream too, and these were soo yummy!

We also had pizza pie-BBQ chicken.

Here is a super-yummy and easy recipe for BBQ chicken using your slow cooker!

6 frozen skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
¾ to 1 full (12 ounce) bottle barbecue sauce
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
¼ red onion, sliced
¼ C cilantro, torn into pieces

Place chicken in a slow cooker. In a bowl, mix the barbecue sauce, Italian salad dressing, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over the chicken.
Add sliced onions and cilantro to top.
Cover, and cook 3 to 4 hours on High or 6 to 7 hours on Low.
Pull out chicken breasts, shred and return to slow cooker.
Continue cooking for another hour.

After it's cooked, you have so many options!

We like to make BBQ Chicken sandwiches with some ciabiatta bread and a smokey cheddar.

Or, we make BBQ Chicken quesadillas with lots of colby jack cheese.

But for Pi Day, we had to make a BBQ Chicken pizza pie.

So, this is my 'recipe' for the pizza. Ready? It's really hard. Here we go...

Pizza dough (our local grocery store sells pizza dough for cheap-o, but you can make your own, of course)
BBQ Sauce (if you only used ¾ bottle of sauce for your chicken, the rest will be the perfect amount)
BBQ Chicken
Colby Jack cheese
Cilantro (optional)
Spread a think layer of sauce to crust than layer the rest of your ingredients.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

“Today you are you! That is truer than true!
There is no one alive who is you-er than you!”

We love, love, love reading around here and Dr. Seuss is a favorite of all.

In fact, I read to both my kids in the womb often, and the first book I read both of them was 'Dr. Seuss' ABC.'

Both my kids have tons of Dr. Seuss books and I would say that between both kids, we read at least one Dr. Seuss book a day.

Last year, I kind of threw a quick celebration together, since finding out it was Dr. Seuss' birthday just a day earlier.
This year, I was pretty excited to be hosting a Dr Seuss playdate for my mom's group! Since, I knew I'd be planning some stuff anyway, it made it just a little less crazy that I was doing it in the name of a playdate this time. Haha!

So, I obsessed a little about activities for the kids and, of course, a fun Seuss-worthy food I could share.

I decided on having the kids make their own Cat In the Hat 'hats.'
I cut pieces of white construction paper, about two inches wide. Then I used a piece of red construction paper, and taped (double-sticky tape is THE best when doing kids glue to deal with!) five strips per hat. The sixth strip was used as a headband, secured around the kids' heads with staples.
They turned out pretty cute, and were easy enough for the kids to make.

I also had some blank bookmarks, stickers and crayons so the kids could make their own bookmarks.
I bought a package of 12 bookmarks at Michaels for $.99, but you could easily make some yourself by cutting up some strips of cardstock. I also grabbed some adorable Dr. Seuss stickers at Michaels and put those with the stickers my mom got at Target (in the clearanced dollar section for only $.25!).

And, for the youngest of our guests, I just printed out some coloring sheets from Seussville.
I had these on a couple tables along with some crayons, so they could color away. :)

For my food contribution, I came up with the idea of 'Red Fish, Blue Fish' Jello jigglers. I was happy to find the perfect fish cookie cutter among my 'collection' (I have somewhere in the range of about 250 cookie cutters).
To make the jigglers, you have to use four boxes of each Jello (found this out the hard way when I only bought one each, and had to send my hubby back to the store...oops!) and only hot water.
Then after it sets (about four hours) you can cut it into fun shapes.
They turned out really cute, and all the kids seemed to love eating them!

We also had some other fun contributions to the snacks...

How cute are these??

And, I forgot to get a picture, but one of the moms made some yummy fruit salad with the most adorable hand-drawn picture of Truffula trees and a quote from 'Th Lorax.' So clever!

We also had lots and lots of Seuss books to read the kids. Of course, with everything else, we only got through a couple of them.

But it turned out to be a fun day, and I think we had some happy (and tired!) kiddos when it was all over!

“Today is gone, today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.”

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Valentine's Day Fun!

Yea, I know, it's like two weeks past Valentine's Day, but my computer decided to quit on me, and all my photos were on it... Anyway, it's back, so I decided to finally get on my Valentine's post! Haha!

So, for breakfast on Valentine's Day, I presented the kiddos with their homemade pop-tarts (on new Valentine's themed plates bought especially for the day!)! They were a little confused at first (well, really just Z, since A has never had a pop-tart)...”huh, this doesn't look like a pop-tart...” But, after they tasted them, they were pretty happy (it also helped that we watched the Valentine's episode of Backyardigans while eating breakfast! I know...fancy, right??)!

After breakfast, the kids got to open their mailboxes and found a couple goodies (heart shaped Pez dispensers and heart shaped Etch A Sketches) plus Valentine's from Mom. :o)

At lunch, we cut out heart shapes from pizza dough and made our own heart shaped pizzas. I was so proud when the kids both asked if they could have 'leaves' on their pizzas (from the basil we have planted in a pot on the windowsill) too!

And, we had a surprise visit from not one, but both grandmas during lunch! The kiddos were so excited to have them here, and to give them the Valentine's they made them.

Dinner was a real treat for everyone, because I decided on brinner (breakfast for dinner), which is a favorite around here!

We had purchased a fun heart shaped pancake mold at Crate & Barrel a few days earlier, so put that to use (ooh, here's a tip on keeping your pancakes warm, if you're making a bunch; put your Crockpot on 'warm' and put your finished pancakes in there. They'll stay nice and toasty and be ready to melt your butter for as long as you need!) to make a big pile of pancakes for all.

I also made up some heart shaped individual hashbrowns (I just used a cookie cutter to kind of mold them, then slid them into my skillet from a cutting board) for everyone.

And, to drink, the kids got strawberry flavored milk!
To top it all off, we lit the "fancy" candle (as Z refers to it) to make it feel even more special.

And, of course, after dinner, the kids and I presented Colin with the homemade marshmallows. I'm not sure who was more excited about them; the kids or Dad! Haha!

So, all-in-all, it was a fun day full of lots of love (and super-duper cuteness)!

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