Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Classic Cheeseball

Are you a magician?  Because whenever I look at you, everyone else disappears.

I seem to have lost my phone number.  Can I have yours?

Is your daddy a baker?  Because you've got some nice buns!

Bwahahahaha!  Am I the only one laughing at these cheeseball pick up lines?   Yes?

Um, ok.  I just couldn't have a conversation about cheeseballs without a little cheeseball humor.  So, humor me, will ya?


 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Thursday, January 26, 2017

Personalized Valentines

Valentine's Day is quickly approaching.  We don't usually have a grandiose celebration for this "holiday", but I do decorate for it, my kids make Valentine's Day boxes for school, and I usually end up snapping a pic of each boy and making a personalized Valentine for them to hand out to their friends.  I enjoy doing it (if I'm being honest, it's really more for me then it is for them) and so far they have been ok with not having Star Wars or Thomas the Train Valentines.  With so many free printables available on Pinterest nowadays, it's super easy to come up with a unique, personalized Valentine for your little one!

The cards for this year are not completed yet, but here are a few of the past Valentines I have created for my little heart breakers:

graphic via
 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Stuffed Mushrooms / Gluten Free / Vegetarian

For the baby shower I recently had the honor of co-hosting, we wanted to come up with several vegetarian choices on the buffet.  The mama-to-be is a vegetarian, and since this was her special day, we wanted to make sure she had lots of yummy treats to indulge in!  I have always loved this stuffed mushroom recipe, but it wasn't meat free, so I made a few changes and the results were absolutely delish!

These stuffed shrooms are gluten free and vegetarian.  And for those mayonnaise haters out there, they also contain NO mayo!  I can't relate.  How can you hate mayonnaise?  So creamy.  Anyway, the mushrooms are a crowd favorite, and would be a great finger food for the upcoming Super Bowl!


Ingredients:

24 ounces white button mushrooms (preferably large) or baby bellas
1 extra large onion (or 2 small-medium onions) diced
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1 Tbs butter
8 oz cream cheese, softened 
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
5 oz parmesan cheese, shredded


Directions:

Thoroughly wash the mushrooms and separate the stems from the caps.  I used a small spoon to help pry the stem out.  


Set the caps on a towel to dry and finely chop the stems.  Heat 1 Tbs butter in a skillet over med-high heat.  Add mushroom stems, diced onion, bay leaf, thyme, and vegetable broth.  Simmer until onions start to caramelize, about 20 minutes.  


Meanwhile, mix softened cream cheese, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a large bowl.  Remove bay leaf and combine onion mixture with the cheese mixture and stir well.  Spoon mixture into mushroom caps, rounding the top slightly.  


Press the top of each mushroom cap into the parmesan cheese.  Place on a foil lined baking sheet.  Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes.  Look at all of that cheesy oniony goodness!  Ready, set, devour!




 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Thursday, January 19, 2017

Woodland Baby Shower

I recently had the pleasure of co-hosting a woodland themed baby shower for my sister-in-law, Juli.  She's having a baby boy, due in March, and had recently purchased this crib sheet.  The sheet is what started it all!  Juli warned us that while she liked woodland, she didn't necessarily want a full on woodland themed shower.  We must not have heard that last part.  Oops!  My co-host, Emily, and I got a tad bit carried away with the woodland theme, but it turned out sooooo stinkin' cute!  Hopefully Juli grows to love woodland things, otherwise Emily's next baby will be all set for a woodland themed room!  (wink wink)
 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png

DIY Moss Covered Letters

In searching for cute woodland themed ideas for my sister-in-law's baby shower, we came across some moss covered letters.  This banner was super cute, but we wanted the letters to stand alone vs hanging them from a banner.  So, off to the craft store to see what I could find.  Joann's came to the rescue with these 12" cardboard letters.  They have various sizes, but the 12" ones were perfect for this occasion.

 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Whole Wheat Cream Cheese Cranberry Streusel Muffins

Today is one of those days, that didn't exactly go as planned.  We had been out of town all weekend, and got back yesterday.  I was looking forward to both boys going to school today, so I could run errands, catch up on laundry, etc, etc.  Well, that all changed when Beckham started throwing up in the middle of the night, and continued to be sick for the majority of the early hours this morning.  Sick in his bed, sick in my bed, sick on the rocking chair...  Blah.  Instead of getting several things crossed off my "to-do" list, I am actually adding more to it.  I just have to say thank the Lord for washers and dryers.  They have both been running non stop, trying to catch up with all of the sheets and clothes and stuffed animals that need to be washed after a weekend away, and a sick night.  I had plans for a different post for today, but since I had this one already prepared in my drafts, this is going to have to do!  It's actually a super yummy recipe that I have been meaning to share with you, and just hadn't found the right time.

So, let's get on with it, shall we?  Whole Wheat Cream Cheese Cranberry Streusel Muffins!

Whoa!  That's a mouthful of a title!  It felt necessary to include all of the key ingredients to lure you into wanting to make these babies ASAP!  A sweet muffin combined with a slightly tart cranberry and a little extra sweetness in the streusel topping--the perfect combination!


 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Friday, January 13, 2017

Lovin' Lately

It's your favorite time of the month!  And, no, I don't mean when Aunt Flo visits.  It's time for Lovin' Lately!  The time when I tell you about things that have been rocking my world lately...things you need to know about...things that will change your life for the better.  That's a bold statement.  But, I really do only showcase items that I have tried and loved, so I feel it's pretty accurate!

Before we talk about things I have been loving, I need to talk about something that has been driving me bonkers!  Whistling.  My youngest brother used to whistle ALL.THE.TIME.  As a sibling who was 5 1/2 years older, it drove me nutso.  And now I find myself in bizarre time warp because my son is obsessed with whistling.  He whistles while he works on Legos.  He whistles while he does his homework.  He whistles first thing when he wakes up in the morning.  Instead of a rooster crowing, I hear Chase whistling.  Whistle, whistle, whistle.  I am usually pretty good at tuning annoying children things out, but this has started to get under my skin.  I think it's getting louder.  He's had a LOT of practice, and he's really quite good at it, unfortunately for me.  He doesn't even realize he is doing it most of the time.  The other day, I asked him to stop for a little bit to give my head a rest, and he politely agreed, and then within 1 minute, he was whistling again.  I reminded him to please take a break from the whistling, and he said, "oops, sorry!", only to start back up again another minute later.  It's an uncontrollable habit at this point!  We are going on a road trip this weekend, so I'm going to have to get this boy some gum, or maybe a jawbreaker...anything to obstruct his whistle hole!  Anywho, I just had to vent.  Now, on to the things I am loving...and no...there are no whistles involved.
 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Working' It-New Year's Goals

I'm trying something new this year, and I am "linking up" with some other bloggers (Erika and Shay) one Wednesday a month for "Workin' It Wednesdays", where busy moms talk about how they try to keep it together amongst all of the chaos.  The first topic is New Year's goals.


I have already vowed to work on improving my posture this year.  And, being that we are 11 days into the new year, I am doing pretty good.  I have realized though that it's more of a core issue...meaning I have no ab strength whatsoever, so I really need to work on that.  Meh.

Just like every other year, by the time January rolls around, I am usually ready to start eating a little bit healthier.  A month plus of eating treats and indulging in holiday food usually wears on me after a while.  So, while I never make it an official "resolution", I am back on track as far as cooking nightly meals, and not overdoing it on goodies.  In the spirit of improving my posture and strengthening my core, I decided I would hop back on the ole dusty trusty treadmill.  I have been getting up early to fit it in before the boys wake up because once they are up, all bets are off.

I was very good about it until last weekend when I decided to finish off the leftover bottle of New Year's Eve champagne, and then slid in my socks, Tom Cruise / Risky Business style, into my son's room to snag the iPad, and I lost control and slid my foot underneath his bed frame...which then ripped off my big toenail half way down the nail bed.  Awesome.  Yep, had to take a couple of days off the new workout routine after that incident.  But, now I'm back at it.


I am not an early riser by choice.  In fact, I am definitely more of a night owl.  After the boys go to bed, I get a second wind and start doing all kinds of stuff around the house. Before I know it, the clock strikes midnight and I turn into a pumpkin.  Actually, I just turn into an insomniac because I force myself to go to bed, but my mind can't chill, so I end up laying in bed most nights for quite some time until I finally fall asleep.  I've always been jealous of those people who seem to fall asleep before their head hits the pillow.


This is me.  Minus the cat.  I'm allergic to cats, so my eyes would definitely be bloodshot if a cat was in my bed.  One sheep, two sheep....Actually, it's more like "now, what do I need from Target?"

So, there you have it folks.  A few unofficial goals for the new year.  Pretty cliche...eat better, workout, stop drinking champagne to the point of injuring myself, etc.  But most of them stem from my ultimate goal, to improve my slumped over, osteoporosis looking, old lady posture.  I've googled some stretches and exercises, and I've been good about doing them.  It's remembering to stand up straight that's been the hardest.  Old habits die hard.


Another thing I have been doing lately, is going through emails to unsubscribe from all of the junk I don't want.  It's amazing how many emails I get on a daily basis, and just having to weed through them and delete the ones I don't want is quite time consuming.  It takes some extra time on the front end, but I've been taking a few extra minutes and unsubscribing to try and cut down on the email clutter.  Hopefully, this will save me time in the future and reduce the unwanted spam.

What are your goals for the new year?

Thanks Erika and Shay for for starting this link up!  Tune in the 2nd Wednesday of each month for more fun topics!

 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Thursday, January 5, 2017

Mom Uniform

So it wasn't until I started looking at the pictures I have taken over the past couple of months that I realized I have a mom uniform.  Apparently, when I decide to actually get dressed for the day, I really like to wear jeans, booties, and some sort of cardigan.  Every now and then I'll change things up with a vest or tunic, but for the most part, it seems I am cardi-obsessed.  Learned something new about myself today!   I'll do my best to branch out for the next style post, but for this one, I hope you enjoy the wide variety of long cardigans!  Ha!


 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Shake Your Bootie

It's taken me a while to get back into the swing of things after all of the holiday hoopla.  I just can't seem to get my act together!  The kiddos head back to school later this week, so maybe once we are in our routine again I'll feel better.

Like most girls, I love shoes.  I used to wear the crazy tall heels, platforms, and wedges, but since having children, I have converted into more of a flat shoe person.  For one, chasing after a 2 year old in heels is not exactly easy.  And two, I don't know if it's because I am not used to wearing tall shoes anymore or if it's a result of getting older, but if I'm in heels for too long, my feet HURT!  Wedges are a little more manageable, but long are the days of strutting around in 4 inch stilettos like Carrie Bradshaw.  Practicality has taken over.  Although I need my shoes to be practical and comfortable, I still want them to be cute of course!  I love all of the wedge and chunky heel booties that are available this season.  I have 2 pairs of taller wedges and I wear them on occasion, but my go to boots and booties are the lower heeled ones.  I can wear them day to day, running errands, or shuffling kids to school.   Luckily, there are several different styles out there that aren't very high but still very stylish.
 photo Niki Heart Auto signature-2_zpso77bkiti.png
Back to Top