4th of july Jello Cookies

These were really easy to make.

They would be a fun addition to your 4th of July party.

Jello Cookies

 

You don’t have to cut them out as stars, but it makes it more festive.

 4th Of July Jello Star Cookies (1 of 4)

 4th Of July Jello Star Cookies (1 of 1)

Original Recipe From Kraft

 

What You Need:

3.5 cups flour

1 tsp. Baking Powder

1.5 cups salted butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 pkg. (3 oz. each) JELL-O Cherry (or strawberry etc.) Flavor Gelatin, divided

1egg

1tsp. vanilla

Make It:

HEAT oven to 400°F.

MIX flour and baking powder. Beat butter in large bowl with mixer until creamy. Add sugar and 1 pkg. gelatin; beat until light and fluffy. Blend in egg and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture.

SHAPE dough into 1-inch balls. Place, 2 inches apart, on baking sheets. Flatten with bottom of glass. Sprinkle with remaining dry gelatin mix.

Or

KNEAD the dough and roll it out to cut out shapes. You may need a little bit more flour if you choose to do it this way. 

BAKE 8 to 10 min. or until edges are lightly browned. Cool on baking sheets 3 min. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.

For best results, use the same flavor of JELL-O Gelatin for both the cookie dough and sprinkling on top.

Enjoy!

Jello Cookies

~Jenny

 

 

It’s A Zoo Out There!

 

We are enjoying our official first full week of summer (by the calendar and by the school calendar too!).  And I think we have had a full 3 days of SUN! Oh summer in the Northwest, it is a blessing (the cool days) and a curse (the cool, WET days!).

This week has been an encounter with the wild for our family! We took a trip to the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle with some GREAT family friends and spent HOURS trekking though the zoo, checking out all the cool sights and even cooler animals! The last time we were at the zoo, Kaylee was asleep for half the trip in the Baby Bjorn! She’ll be 6 in just a couple of months!  Between the 4 of us adults, (Tyler and I, and his very best friend Ronn  and his wife, Elizabeth) you’d think we could easily corral the 5 kids we had between our two families…or not so much!  The kids were great…just very excited… and they didn’t want to wait for us to catch up to see anything!

So we definitely enjoyed checking out all the cool animals, catching up with good friends (between sprinting after children), and we actually caught a GREAT day of weather too!  We even got to watch our friends make paper out of Elephant poo, which my children wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole- they are WAY TOO much like their mother (and it isn’t always such a good thing!).

Here are a few of our favorite Zoo photos!

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Flamingoes were all Kaylee talked about the whole time- for some reason, they were ALL she really wanted to see and they were our last stop. I think she really liked them!

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Funnily enough, this is the BEST picture we got of ALL the kids! We could not get ONE shot where they would ALL look at us. And I SERIOUSLY LOVE this one!!!

After our zoo trip this week, we had another WILD animal experience with the Reptile Man! He came to visit our local Boys and Girls Club. He brought with him a Blue Tongued Skink, Hela Monster, Tortoise, Rattlesnake, Cobra, Black Moccasin, and about 3 other snakes including an albino Python that he needed six kids to help hold (Cole actually volunteered to help with that!) and the coolest thing (in my opinion) was the baby alligator!!

I was only able to get a couple of pics due to the large number of people but here is one of the alligator and tortoise!

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And  our last wild animal experience actually happened on the way TO the Reptile Man! And it was really a VERY sweet encounter. We have a pond right at one of  the entrances to our neighborhood and we happened to come upon this Momma and her babies crossing the road right as we were leaving the neighborhood, luckily my camera was on the seat beside me!!

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~JESS

Chicken Pesto Pasta

 

Hello friends! I wanted to share another quick, simple weekday meal with you. This is a family favorite and also a favorite of mine to make when I am delivering a meal to another family! It comes together quickly and really only requires 6 ingredients.

If you are a more adventuresome cook, you can whip up your own pesto, it isn’t really that hard, or if you are pressed for time or maybe lazy like me, you can just buy the store-bought pesto too!  I don’t really measure anything out in this dish so all the measurements that I give you are an approximation of what I use, just experiment with it!

Here are your ingredients:

Olive Oil (about 2 Tb)

Garlic (2-3 cloves diced)

Chicken Breasts (for our family of 4, I use 2 large breasts)

Pesto (7 ounce container or home-made)

Farfalle (bow tie) Pasta

Mozzarella Cheese

 

Directions:

Cut Chicken into small pieces, sauté chicken, garlic and olive oil in a medium pan.

While chicken is cooking, prepare pasta according to directions on box.

Once pasta and chicken are cooked, combine pasta, chicken and about 1/2 –3/4 of the container of the pesto in a large bowl,  (you can add as much pesto as you want- it as all about how much taste you want) adding about a cup of mozzarella cheese.

Once it is all combined, sprinkle with more mozzarella to finish!

 

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Add a side salad and some garlic bread, YUMMY!!! ENJOY!!!

~JESS

A Totally Random Wednesday Post

 

As I was preparing a post for you for today, I kept coming across all these totally random things I wanted to blog about that were just left in my “Blog” folder on my computer from back in May. Things that I never got around to, or other things seemed more important or I couldn’t quite figure out how  to make an ENTIRE post about THAT, so I just decided to make today’s post all about those random things that are currently sitting in that “blog” folder, waiting for their moment to shine!

Like these two things here!

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Our neighborhood has a HUGE garage sale twice a year, in May and September, and usually I find TONS of great stuff. This year, I didn’t have much time to go look around (much to my husband’s GREAT relief!) and I only went to a few sales, mainly the ones that I knew my friends were selling things at! So I totally scored on these 2 items! And I know you are still trying to figure out what the HECK they are! The top one is a camera strap to go over my camera strap! It is to make my camera strap more comfortable, and the best part- well actually the 2 best parts, 1. it came from my friend Jamie, who also happens to be the gal who I blogged about here (because she is a FAB photographer) and 2. it was only $1, they are usually anywhere from $20-30 on Groopdealz or Etsy!!  If you have ever worn a heavy, large camera dangling around your neck for more than 10 minutes, you know why this baby is important!

The second photo is a bag FULL of scrap fabric that I got for a whopping TWO DOLLARS from another friend, Wendi, who makes ADORABLE hair accessories!

Why am I showing you my garage sale finds? Because I was SO EXCITED! And I am actually going to show you a really cool flower craft with that fabric VERY soon!

I HAD to share the following photo because I just got such a good laugh out of it! While my good friend Barbara and I were treating our daughters to a very special lunch at the American Girl Café a couple weeks ago, we opened up our napkins and got a great laugh out of what was printed in the inside of our napkin ring…

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Can you read it?? AMERICAN GIRL in BIG BOLD PROUD letters, much smaller… Made in CHINA!!!  We laughed for a bit over that…oh the irony!

And I would also like to introduce you to the newest member of our household, Sparkie- as named by our kids. I was lucky enough to win Sparkie at our Mops Brunch at the beginning of May and to everyone’s surprise, she is still going strong!! So far, fish and a frog have been our only pets in residence at our home- but the kiddos and hubby are lobbying SO VERY  HARD for a puppy right now!

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And I would like to end my random Wednesday post with perhaps my most random photo ever!!  And quite possibly my FAVORITE photo EVER!?

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Apparently, Spiderman is REALLY into Highlights magazine!!!!

~JESS

Simple Potato Salad

My aunt made this potato salad last summer. It was so good I couldn’t stop eating it. I asked her for the recipe and she said she was embarrassed to give it to me because it was so easy.

Uh…hello? I love EASY!

So, just so she doesn’t get embarrassed that I am sharing her secret easy potato salad, I will not be telling you WHICH one of my aunts gave me this recipe. ;)

Potato Salad

There are only four ingredients; baby red potatoes, bacon & ranch dressing, plus a little salt and pepper.

Ok, I never said it was HEALTHY, I said it was delicious! My aunt is sort of a health nut. Maybe that’s why she was embarrassed to give it to me? Really though, who cares? It’s so good and so easy.

First cook 2lbs. of baby red potatoes.

Potato Salad & BBQ spare ribs (1 of 17)

 

Measure out 1 cup of ranch dressing, 1/2 cup sliced green onions & 1/2 lb. crisp cooked & crumbled bacon. Don’t tell my aunt that I always put in a full pound of bacon. Remember, we aren’t going for healthy here.

Potato Salad & BBQ spare ribs (7 of 17)

 

Dump the ranch, bacon and green onions over the cooked potatoes.

Potato Salad & BBQ spare ribs (8 of 17)

 

Then mix together until you get something like this. Add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!

Potato Salad & BBQ spare ribs (9 of 17)

 

Simple Potato Salad

  • 2 lbs small red potatoes, cooked
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions
  • 1 cup of your favorite ranch dressing
  • 1/2 lb crisp-cooked, crumbled bacon
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook potatoes. Add all other ingredients and mix together. Salt and pepper to taste.

Potato Salad

 

Thank you Aunt ____ for the delicious recipe!

~Jenny

Flower Pot Card Holder

A good friend of mine had surgery last week. She loves flowers, so I bought her a flower pot. I planned to drop it off on her porch, but I wanted to add a card and was hoping it could be ‘attached’ somehow.

Flower Pot Card Holder 

 

I decided to use one of the printables that I created here. I tried to think of what could hold my card. I walked into my craft room (or as my husband would say-‘his office’…mmmhhhmmm…) and the clothespins were just calling my name.

Flower Pot Gift Holder (3 of 4)

 

You could just use a clothespin to attach a card, but because I can’t leave ‘well enough’ alone, I decided to spruce it up a bit. If you have everything on hand, it really only take about two minutes. I painted one swipe of paint on the clothespin and while still wet added some glitter and let dry! 

Flower Pot Gift Holder (4 of 4)

 

Isn’t it cute and simple? These would make great gifts for teacher’s too!

Flower Pot Gift Holder (2 of 4)

I love it!

~Jenny

Flower Pot Card Holder

Diy Wood sign & Friends that keep you smiling

Do you have a Cricut or a Silhouette? Or possibly a friend that does? Well, if you do, then I am going to show you how easy it is to make your own wood sign with whatever saying you want. But, first I have to share something that will make you smile.

Sunshine Wood Sign (7 of 7)

My friend Andrea painted her guest room the perfect gray color. I’m still waiting to find out what the actual color is and here is why.

I tried to text her one day to find out the color. But, because I have her number in my phone as ‘Andy & Andrea’ I always get she and her husband Andy mixed up. Andy is like my little brother. I’ve known him since I was ten. He’s the younger brother of my best friend Amy. He’s the sort of person that can make you laugh and he doesn’t even realize how funny he is. I’m going to share the text back and forth when I was trying to find out this color. I can’t believe it’s still on my phone, but I’m so glad it is.

Actual Text:

Jenny: Hi…when you get a chance could you tell me the color of that gray paint in your guest room?

Andy: Ahh…gray? (I know you are already smiling)

Jenny: Seriously? Is this Andy? What brand of paint and it can’t just be gray. ;)

Andy: Oh yeah, I’ll look. Just a sec.

       (Ten minutes later)

Andy: Ok, it is satin…(and now you are laughing)

Jenny: Uh…that is the type of paint…not the color..it’s ok…I can figure it out or ask Andrea later…:)

Andy: Sorry. Not great with paint…

Don’t you love it? You have to give him credit for trying! Thanks Andy!

Ok, back to the sign.

First Step. Find a piece of wood you’d like to use.

Next, cut out your saying on a Cricut or Silhouette to fit your wood. When I am painting I don’t like to waste my vinyl, so I have always used contact paper. One roll goes along way! 

Sunshine Wood Sign (1 of 7)

 

I wanted the words in this sign to be two different colors. Iplaced the words on the wood where I wanted them. Then I drew a pencil mark where I wanted to paint each color. Like this below.

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The next step is to place your text onto the wood sign.

Sunshine Wood Sign (3 of 7)
 

This next step is optional. Depending on the color of paint you are using you may not need to do this. But, because I used gray paint on the top and bottom section and the middle was white, I didn’t want to see a contrast when I painted the yellow over all of it. Does that make sense? So, to avoid this, I painted white over the gray while the letters were still on.

Sunshine Wood Sign (5 of 7)

 

Next, paint the whole sign yellow.

Sunshine Wood Sign (6 of 7)
 

I don’t have a picture of the last step, but once your paint is dry then you can peel off your text (contact paper) and your cute sign will be revealed!

I like to sand down my signs to make them look a bit more unique.

Sunshine Wood Sign (7 of 7)

Hopefully I will be able to figure out that perfect paint color. I wonder what would happen if I just asked for ‘satin gray’ at the paint store? I may just do that and make someone else’s day. Thanks for keeping us smiling Andy!

~Jenny

Great Housewarming Gift

We got this FABULOUS idea from our FABULOUS friend Alice who always comes up with incredibly thoughtful gifts and equally thoughtful packaging! For example, my son Cole is MAJORLY into Martial Arts and for his last birthday, she wrapped his gift in a box that was tied off with a Tae Kwon Do belt made out of tissue paper! It was PERFECT! We actually STILL have it. ( Did I mention that party was in December, that’s six months ago folks!) It is now fairly beat up, since my daughter latched onto RIGHT after the party and has used it on her numerous stuffed animals, especially a rather large Winnie the Pooh, apparently he is now a green stripe white belt so WATCH OUT FOLKS!

This particular gift idea that we are sharing was for a housewarming but you could use it for many different gift ideas-birthdays, anniversary’s, holiday parties, etc… really whatever the occasion.. you can fill the cookie jar with whatever you want. It is such a simple yet classy gift!

 

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I have seen the Cookie Jar for as little as $10 too so you just gotta shop around to find a good deal. I believe I found it for that price at Wal-Mart.

And you can make it as easy on yourself as you want, fill it with store-bought Costco brownies or you can go all Martha on us, and make your own!

Either way, it’ll be totally appreciated by the recipient of this great gift!!!

~JESS

These Might Make Me Crazy!!

 

So I have joked with you all about my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder a bit, about how certain things in my house and in my life have to be arranged in a certain way in order for me to maintain any true level of sanity, right? Some of you know of my struggles with needing to see vacuum lines in my carpets and you also know that I am getting MUCH better at some of this stuff…but this, well these things I am going to show you below, well they could possibly just put me over the edge!!!

My friend Dawn shared the following on her Facebook page today and I HAD to share because I was so BOTHERED, I wanted to fix them ALL (except for the Peeps, for some reason, they don’t bother me AT ALL!). So I thought I would share with YOU! And see if you were bothered by any of these, or if I am really just CRAZY!? Winking smile 

The list is actually originally from BuzzFeed.  I give you Buzz Feed’s 19 Things That Will Drive Your OCD Self Insane!

1. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

2. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

3. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

4. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

5. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

6. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

7. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

8. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

9. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

10. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

11. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

12. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

13. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

14. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

15. THIS

THIS

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Source: farm3.static.flickr.com

16. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

17. THIS

THIS

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Source: i.imgur.com

18. THIS

THIS

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Source: i1098.photobucket.com

19. and finally, THIS

and finally, THIS

 

Well, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did! Thanks again BuzzFeed for messing with my head, glad I could share it with all my friends!!

~JESS