Sunday, January 30, 2011

Suzy & Stew Homemaker

Eric and I bought some Saucy Mama Chipotle Mustard around Christmastime and we had still yet to use it. So, I snooped around Saucy Mama's blog and found a recipe for Lime Chicken Quesadillas. 

We made them today after church and they were oh-so-good. However, we made a few alterations and therefore feel the recipe merits a new name. And so, we bring to you, Lemon Lougee Chipotle Chicken Quesadillas. You REALLY have to try these, and so, I'm pasting the recipe below with our edits highlighted. This is for Sunny! 

10 boneless skinless chicken breast tenders (or if you only have 3, canned chicken can be used, too)
Saucy Mama’s Chipotle Mustard1 red bell pepper – cubed
1 yellow onion – cubed
1 can black beans – drained and rinsed
1/2 bag frozen corn
5 tablespoons Saucy Mama’s Lime Chipotle Marinade – divided (we forgot this item, so we made it out of 3 tablespoons lemon juice & 2 tablespoons habanero hot sauce)
1 bag Mexican Cheese mix
Small corn tortillas
3 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon Saucy Mama’s Chipotle Mustard
Tabasco sauce – to taste (we used 1 tablespoon of Tapatio sauce)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. We cooked the chicken breast tenders, shredded it and then added the canned chicken into a skillet or frying pan.
Lay out chicken tenders on baking sheet. Slather tenders with Saucy Mama’s Chipotle Mustard and cook for approximately 25 minutes until tenders are fully cooked. Set aside to cool. After cooking the chicken in the frying pan we added the mustard and let it cook while did the next step.
Put a little olive oil in a large high sided pan and heat. Cube red peppers and onions and cook in heated oil. Gently saute but do not brown. After the vegetables are soft, add one can of drained and rinsed black beans and 6oz. of frozen corn niblets. Gently stir until beans and corn are warmed through. Add 2 tablespoons of the Saucy Mama’s Lime Chipotle Marinade to vegetables, mix and set aside. We used our own marinade.
Pour 3 tablespoons of Saucy Mama’s Lime Chipotle Marinade or Lougee style marinade on top of chicken and toss to evenly distribute marinade through chicken. Add marinated shredded chicken to vegetable pan and stir.
Butter one side of two corn tortillas. Put cheese on bottom of quesadilla, fill with a little more than 1/2 cup filling and put cheese on top of quesadilla. The cheese helps hold the quesadilla together.

Cook in medium heat pan until bottom is brown and gently turn over and cook other side until brown (make sure cheese has started to melt or your filling will fall out when you attempt to flip the quesadilla). We struggled with this step - stuff falling out everywhere - apparently our gently spatula flipping skills aren't quite up to prime. So we improvised and used a George Foreman Grill - they turned out perfect when using this. 
Cut into quarters and serve with Saucy Mama Chipotle Dipping Sauce.

Combine ingredients, mix, serve with quesadillas and enjoy! *Special note: this is great with tortilla chips, too. We had to make another batch and now Eric and I are arguing over portion sizes! MMM...

In other news, I've been called to be a co-Sunbeam teacher in Primary. For you folks who aren't Mormon this means I help teach three year olds in the kids meetings. Today was my first day. The kids are adorable, but a handful! It's two hours of basically babysitting 5-8 three year olds while trying to impart to them the basics of Christianity, like today's "lesson" was supposed to be about how Heavenly Father is Jesus' father.  I think we got some of that across, but we mainly colored pictures, played with playdough and took lots of potty and drink breaks. 
But, I definitely feel needed there and look forward to the challenge of teaching these precious children of God. 
Eric now has two callings. One as the 4th Sunday Spanish instructor in Priesthood (the men's meeting) and also as assistant 11 year old scout leader. We are glad to be needed and of service and have felt very welcomed by our new church family. 
Yesterday we spent the day in the tri-cities. We went to the Columbia River Temple, ate at Applebee's courtesy a wedding gift card, spent some time at Barnes & Noble and then came home and watched Despicable Me whilst eating Tillamook Mountain Blackberry Ice Cream. 
We've enjoyed our weekend together and hope you've had a good one, too! 

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Up On the Housetop

I realize that it is nigh unto Thursday, and therefore almost closer to next weekend than this weekend last. Alas, here are some photo recaps of our great weekend.

 Friday night was the big First Citizen's Banquet that the Chamber puts on annually. Here we see Eric eating lobster body, bison steak and veggies cooked in a citrus sauce. 

This was our desert. A chocolate carnival or something like that. It has the night's theme on that piece of chocolate, 'Legends & Legacies.'

 Rep. Greg Walden stopped by and helped raise $2400 for the Chamber. I shook his hand and said hello. Guess who was with him?? His new Top Policy Advisor and my old bishop, Ray Baum. It was great to see him! 

 Eric and his busty trophy wife (sorry if that's inappropriate). 

 Saturday was an arduous day. We did a lot of moving of stuff for my mom and the kids into her new place (more on that later). We were able to meet up with my great long time friend and bridesmaid of wedding last, Teresa. Here she is with new beau Morgan. It was incredibly difficult to get a decent shot of the both of them. They're crazy! 


 Sunday morning. The kids were pooped! 

 And then they wrestled on our bed. The weekend with a full house reminded us to appreciate this kid-free time in our lives. Including sleeping in on the weekends.

 Max and Eric decided to explore the attic crawl space. 

 Max's feet. Neat. 

 Then we snuck out on to the roof. Don't tell Mom. Only the older, dumber boys went up that high, though, I assure you. 

 Riley and I. And my husband. 

 There were A LOT of games of Yahtzee over the weekend. I think Riley and Eric played at least 20, seriously. 

 This is the stairwell in the new house. Which is a two story duplex. Think it was a polygamy home - it has a door by the butler's pantry that connects the two sides. It's over 100 years old! 

 The huge kitchen! The downstairs had ten foot ceilings. They're tall! 

 I took the inaugural bath in this clawfoot tub. It was a delight. 

The window to the roof. 

We came home Sunday quite ready for bed. Seems like I still haven't caught up from the busy weekend. Hope you're all enjoying the week. We've spent every night glued to the Australian Open. Tonight we had The Jimmer Show on the computer and the Women's Semi-Finals on the TV. Gotta love good competition.

Good night!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

What I Do

Here is a sampling of some of the more fun things I get to do while working for the Pendleton Chamber of Commerce:

A laborious project. Invitation to the 55th Annual First Citizens' Banquet. The powers that be wanted it to mimic a "WANTED" poster style I'd done for a 'Hospitality Posse' class announcement. Once I got the main elements put together, I was able to pick and choose different parts to use on other projects for tomorrow's BIG event.

This is my latest effort to classy up and streamline the monthly chamber newsletter. It's got the western cowboy feel, without feeling hoaky. At least that's what I was attempting. I think everyone is still adjusting because it is a pretty modern update to your regular ol' newsletter. At the same time, it isn't exactly what I would like because you have to please others and it is a newsletter, after all. 

This is my attempt at producing a requested logo. Pendleton recently earned this honor from True West Magazine. I wanted it to feel like some recent branding that came down from Widen+Kennedy (an ad firm in Portland) for EOVA (Eastern Oregon Visitor's Association) on advertising Eastern Oregon to tourists. 

And this is just me playing with some recent photos that've been entered into our photocontest for our new web site (to be launched April-ish). I turned the logo white and went with it. They aren't perfect, but they were fun to do in the 20 extra minutes I had this afternoon.

Okay, that is all for now. Tomorrow we have our big event of the year, a many course dinner and awards ceremony for over 470 people - the event sold out in about two days. I'm looking forward to the bison steak and lobster tail, as well as the chocolate desserts - I got a private tasting with a few other committee members. Eric's going to wear a tie. I'm going to wear a little black dress. It's going to be fab.

Happy weekending!

Monday, January 17, 2011

I've been "window" shopping ...

I'll take this please!
I love this outfit, now ... how to mimic? I'll get back to you.
Found this while perusing the 'net, thus the "window" shopping wordplay.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Not like Her

In an effort not to end like Lot's wife, I've decided rather than look back over 2010 I'd look look forward to the many opportunities and experiences that 2011 might offer.

Besides, if you really want my 2010 in recap, you can just look through my blog archives!

Here is just a sampling of what I'm looking forward to this year ...

  • Getting all our Thank-You cards sent out. We haven't forgotten you! 
  • Eric's birthday. We'll be the same age for 4 1/2 months!
  • My first married Valentine's Day.
  • Trips, trips and more trips. Mainly weekend trips, but some a little bit longer - examples will be forthcoming in this list. 
  • Elizabeth's (Eric's sister) wedding to Stanley in March, in Portland. We hope to see the Blazers play the Spurs while we're there. And maybe there will be tulips up by then in the Rose City. 
  • Our Church General Conference in April. We plan on going to Utah for an extended weekend and visiting with friends and family, and eating sushi at a place Uncle Ken has told us about! 
  • Practicing fishing! We got rods and reels and bait for Christmas and I'm anxious to get out on our first fishing trip! 
  • Learning more tennis. Eric got me my very own tennis racket. I'm looking forward to not being such an embarrassment to my tennis star husband. 
  • Sisters on the Fly camping trips! Which includes finally readying 'My Carolina' for the road! Lights, paint, registration! (here is some of the before and after) ... 
  • Lots of family time in July - including a quick trip down to California to check in with my Grandpa Lee and then swinging back up to Prineville for a week-long Lougee Family Reunion. 
  • Harry Potter 7 Part Two. Do you feel another countdown paper chain coming on??? 

  • A new NCAA Football season - don't tell Eric, but I actually really enjoyed following this season and look forward to next. 
  • Professional Bull Riding at the 101st Pendleton Round-Up. 
  • Celebrating our One Year Anniversary.

And I'm sure there will be many unexpected and good things to add to this list as the year moves along. Looking forward to these experiences makes dreary winter days much more bearable!

    Sunday, January 9, 2011

    Walla Walla Weekend Weekend

    Eric has a bad bout of cabin fever ... coupled with his intense SAD (seasonal affective disorder) ... he needed for us to take a day trip. I feel like we're never just "home" for the weekend - New Year's Weekend seemed like the first. But, knowing he needed to get out, I was up for some exploration. We slapped some Beatles in the seedy player, hit highway 12 and bolted out of the great state of Oregon and to our sister state Washington.

    Walla Walla is only an hour away, but it was a nice breath of fresh air. It helped that the skies were blue and the sun graced us with its scarce winter presence.

    We stopped in to our Future-Brother-in-Law Stan's place of employment, The CookieTree Bakery. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention in our Christmas post that he popped the question to Liz on Christmas Day.
    (It's off to a good start, I'd say.)

    We said yo to the new addition to the family and snagged a gigantic peanut butter cookie and continued
    on our way.

     There was a little park in between two buildings on Main Street, and this was on one of the buildings.

    We wanted to get a picture of the river and us and the gorgeous sun, but the sun was too blinding, so there is no river, just our cuteness. 

    They had these cool clocks in the downtown area. We enjoyed just strolling, checking out the centurion church buildings, Goodwill, the guitar shop, the toy shop, and the bookstore. We exercised a shocking amount of self control and purchased nothing.  

    At five o'clock we were some of the first to slip into the Aloha Sushi Restaurant. 

    It. Was. So. Good! We wanted more! We're still talking about it today. Mmm. I'm pretty appreciative that I found a husband to share my love of Japanese food with. 

    We made it home around 7, prepared our talks for Sacrament meeting today and fell asleep watching The Rainmaker.

    We've enjoyed a nice calm Sabbath. Today we spoke to the entire congregation - me about true happiness and Eric about putting off the natural man. We enjoyed a mellow afternoon visiting with his family and eating "farmer's casserole." Now we're tucked in, sending positive mojo to our boys down in AZ, reading up the latest predictions for the big game. Here's a small indication of the kind of Duck love that flows freely in our home - Eric was found, in the bathroom, fully clothed, wearing his yellow and green Oregon sunglasses, singing the lyrics to "I Love My Ducks" to himself in the mirror.

    Anyway ...

    It's been snowing on and off, but even January snow can't dampen the niceness of this weekend. Hope yours was a delight, too!

    Sunday, January 2, 2011

    Scenes from a Weekend

    It's been a fabulous and fairly lazy 3 day weekend.

    It started with hands down the best New Year's Eve I've had in my 23 years.

    Love bug and I started Friday morning off right ... with french toast smothered in peanut butter along with hash browns flavored with bacon. Mom could smell it all the way in Boardman, so she swung by and ate with us. Then we took the dead dead deader than a doorknob Christmas tree, threw it in the back of Ma's truck and hauled it to a suspiciously unsupervised tree recycling pile down at the park.

    After hours of "How I Met Your Mother" season 1, we readied ourselves for the evening and hit the much anticipated (by Eric) Tron Legacy 3D showing. Eric said it was "epic," me? Well, I fell asleep....

    Afterwards we hit up Eric's parents house, ate some birthday cake (his Grandma McFadden is a New Year's Eve baby) and played a few games.

    We picked up some Chinese take-out and spent the rest of the evening in our cozy apartment. Toasted with some Martinelli's, watched the ball drop, kissed my cutie as Mariah Carey sang "Auld Lang Syne" and fireworks erupted outside... it was pretty ideal.

    As we young guns are unaccustomed to staying up past midnight, we slept in rather late for us on the first day of 2011. We we outrageously lazy, taking in a lot of college football and capping the night with a little "Cinderella Man."

    Today was our first Sunday with church at 9am. We actually really liked the earlier time compared to our 3pm singles branch time or 1pm the last couple of months. The meetings were all great. The Spirit was felt, we were renewed and inspired and we always come away from church with a greater appreciation and love for each other and our marriage.

    We put in some scalloped potatoes to bake and headed off for a Sunday drive. The day was beautiful, we were almost kidding ourselves into thinking Spring was on its way. Then we stepped outside and the 26 degree high slapped us back into winter's reality. Oh well, we can dream.

    (we came upon this city in our journeying)
    (the two headed plaid monster)

    Hope your weekend was swell and dandy. I'm already missing mine!