Disney World’s Magic Kingdom…with Cinderella’s Castle!

By Jodee Weiland

We’re heading back to Disney World, and one park that holds the key to every child’s fantasies is Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Fantasies ranging from the Pirates of the Caribbean to a Haunted Mansion all reside in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Children of all ages express awe when they stand in front of the Walt Disney World’s Railroad Station looking down Main Street, U.S.A., towards the center of the Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and Cinderella’s Castle. Bigger than life, this icon of the Magic Kingdom stands tall and beautiful at the center of Disney World’s Magic Kingdom…Cinderella’s Castle!

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The five sections of Disney World’s Magic Kingdom start with a walk down Main Street, U.S.A., into the various sections that flow one to the other seamlessly as you travel through each section.

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Adventureland has the famous Pirates of the Caribbean attraction, where you join Captain Jack Sparrow on his voyage through the Spanish Main, and the Jungle Cruise, a fun safari boat tour plus more. Frontierland features Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Railroad along with Tom Sawyer’s Island and other great attractions.

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Next comes the Liberty Square, where you can be entertained by the Hall of Presidents, an audio animatronics show that is so life like, you will be amazed! It is here that the Haunted Mansion invites you to journey through dark happy haunts with friendly ghosts, and the Liberty Square Riverboat resides as well. In Fantasyland, you will enjoy It’s a Small World, a musical indoor voyage, Mickey’s PhilharMagic, and Snow White’s Scary Adventures plus several other fun filled attractions.

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Finally, you will travel into Tomorrowland, where Space Mountain, an indoor roller coaster will take you to new heights and back again, while Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, an intergalactic interactive adventure will have you spinning as you fire lasers in this shooting gallery game. There are many more attractions to enjoy in this section and all the others, but the list is too long to describe each here.

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Disney World’s Magic Kingdom…with Cinderella’s Castle is a great opportunity to share so many fantasies with your families in the true style of Disney! There are shows and great food choices here as well. One of our favorites is the Aloha Isle in Adventureland, where you can enjoy great Dole pineapple treats. So if you visit Disney World, be sure to visit what I like to call the original park, Disney World’s Magic Kingdom…with Cinderella’s Castle, and enjoy!

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Classic Bread Pudding with Fruit and Nuts

By Jodee Weiland

I have always wanted to make bread pudding, simply because I love it! Bread pudding is a great way to make a dessert out of day old bread. I often serve crusty loafs of fresh bread with a meal, so when I had a half loaf left from the day before, I decided to make bread pudding. First, I researched tons of recipes, and then I took what I liked about all of them and blended it into a recipe I thought would taste good. I altered a few options somewhat, but nothing that would take away from the basics of bread pudding. With the decisions I made, I wasn’t wrong because the results were delicious. My Classic Bread Pudding with Fruit and Nuts turned out great, and we’ll be enjoying this recipe for a long time to come!

http://learnfromyesterday.comFor one thing, I decided to use light brown sugar in my recipe and less of it. Why? Because with all the sauces available to put on top of bread pudding, I felt this dish would be sweet enough. Since I decided to use a drizzle of salted caramel topping I had purchased earlier, I felt that would definitely add sweetness. Personally, I love bread pudding with or without sauce. I also used almond milk in place of milk. The bread I used was from a crusty loaf of freshly baked bread as well. In addition to the bread, I added a mixture of raisins, dried cranberries, walnuts, almonds, and other nuts. Again the dried fruit would add to the sweetness of the bread pudding, and the whole almonds plus other nuts add a crunch. Together, all of the ingredients made a wonderful bread pudding!

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Classic Bread Pudding with Fruit and Nuts

  • 1/2 loaf fresh baked crusty bread or 5 to 6 slices
  • 2 tablespoons melted unsalted whipped butter
  • 3/4 cup mixture of dried fruits and nuts (see above for what I used)
  • 4 eggs beaten
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

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Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut up bread into cubes and put them in an eight inch square baking dish. Sprinkle the fruit and nuts across the top of the bread. Melt the butter and drizzle it across the top.

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In a mixing bowl, blend together thoroughly the eggs, almond milk, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Beat together until mixed well. Then pour this mixture over the top of the bread, fruit, and nuts. Using a fork or spatula push down lightly on the bread pieces making sure all the bread is soaked well with the liquid mixture.

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Bake the bread pudding 45 minutes or until done. Test by pressing a fork lightly on the top. It should spring back. Also, put a fork or toothpick in the center and make sure it comes out clean when removed. Once done, serve as is or with a sauce of your choice.

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My Classic Bread Pudding with Fruit and Nuts turned out great, and we’ll be enjoying this recipe for a long time to come! As it cooked, the whole house smelled so good, we could hardly wait to try it. When we did, we weren’t disappointed. We drizzled a salted caramel sauce over the top, and that added to the flavor. You can use any kind of sauce you prefer or make one of your own. Since this was the first time I made bread pudding, I’m still working on that. Give this dish a try soon. You’ll love it, so enjoy!

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Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice

By Jodee Weiland

An old favorite here in our home is Shrimp Creole. Shrimp Creole is a dish that I first made long before I ever had children years ago. The rich flavors of Shrimp Creole have always made it a favorite of mine. Those flavors are a blend of flavors from several countries, who all found themselves in the port of New Orleans. Some of those countries were Italy, Spain, and Portugal. The savory flavors of these countries and others long ago created the delicious food selections found in New Orleans, as well as whole new languages they used to communicate among themselves, pidgins and creoles. It was when I was studying these languages in a linguistics class during a master’s program, that I fell in love with New Orleans from a distance, and later when I visited, I was in love forever. All of this gave new meaning to my Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice.

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Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice is a wonderful dish, which starts out with what some call the trinity: onions, celery, and garlic. Sauteed in olive oil, these three ingredients are only the beginning of this delicious dish. Add in the tomatoes, various seasonings, shrimp, and green peppers, you will create a dish do full of rich flavor, it will soon become a family favorite. It is definitely a family favorite for us, and we enjoyed it every time we have it.

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Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice

  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 3/4 cup celery chopped
  • 2 fresh garlic cloves minced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 – 15 ounce can organic diced tomatoes
  • 1 – 15 ounce can all natural crushed tomatoes or tomato puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon or to taste sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 shakes bottled hot sauce or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch plus one tablespoon water
  • 1 pound large shrimp deveined with shell and tail removed
  • 1 medium sweet pepper chopped
  • cooked rice for each serving

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Cook the onion, celery, and garlic in heated olive oil. Cook over a low to medium heat until tender. Do not brown. Add tomatoes, salt, sugar, chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce. Blend this mixture together and simmer uncovered on low heat for about 30 minutes.

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http://learnfromyesterday.comOnce done, add the cornstarch plus one tablespoon water to the mixture. Stir together and then add the shrimp and green peppers. Bring to a low boil, cover, and simmer for five to ten minutes longer until cooked. Serve with rice.

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My Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice is so delicious and will soon become a family favorite in your home. Serve this dish with a red wine and a crusty bread. The flavor is so wonderfully rich and will leave you pleasantly satisfied. Eating this Fabulous Shrimp Creole with Rice for dinner is like bringing a little bet of New Orleans into your home. Take your time and savor the flavors, and enjoy!

Savory Fall Soups

By Jodee Weiland

With fall here and winter coming up soon, the season has arrived when everyone appreciates a hot bowl of soup. Soup recipes help ease us into cooler weather by warming us up when the temperatures drop and taking the the chill away. Sometimes a bowl of hearty soup and some good crusty bread can be just what we need to feel warm again. I’m not a big fan of winter, but I am a fan of Savory Fall Soups.

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My soup recipes that I have included here are delicious, satisfying, and will definitely help warm up the cooler days ahead. One recipe is made with leftover turkey and is a great way to use your Thanksgiving turkey leftovers. Two of the soup recipes use kale, one with a lot of vegetables and the other with navy beans and vegetables. Another soup recipe uses escarole with navy beans and chicken sausage. The final two soups are two of my favorites, a savory white bean soup with tomato and finally, a tasty split pea soup. All of these soups are absolutely delicious and healthy as well. So whichever one you choose to make, I feel certain you will love it.

In the fall and winter, I love fires in the fireplace and Savory Fall Soups. I even enjoy sitting outdoors around a fire pit enjoying the fall weather, if it isn’t too cold outside. These Savory Fall Soups will help warm up the cold days and leave everyone feeling satisfied. Just click on the following links to find each recipe, enjoy!

Escarole Soup with Chicken Sausage and Navy Beans

Kale and White Bean Soup…Good as Well as Healthy

Lemony Kale Basil Mushroom Soup with a Lemon Slice and Parmesan!

Savory White Bean Soup…A Delicious Vegetarian Soup!

Split Pea Soup…A Delicious Way to Warm Up!

Turkey Vegetable Soup with Wild Rice…A Great Way to Use Leftover Turkey!

Enjoy!

On the Go Bagel Sandwich with Egg Whites, Spinach, and Cheese

By Jodee Weiland

Lately, it seems we are always on the go early in the morning, so I decided to make a bagel sandwich that can be made ahead and reheated for about twenty to thirty seconds in the microwave. It was important to me that this bagel sandwich not only tasted good, but was healthy as well. Just because you are in a hurry, that doesn’t mean you can’t choose a healthy homemade bagel sandwich over a fast food version. My On the Go Bagel Sandwich with Egg Whites, Spinach, and Cheese is delicious, easy to do, and healthy!

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Buying bakery fresh bagels are always my first choice. I like to know I’m getting bagels with all natural ingredients whenever I can. I also buy sliced low fat cheese for a recipe like this. Why add extra calories to your bagel sandwich unnecessarily? You always have the option of adding a round slice of Canadian bacon/ham if you would like, but I made mine without the ham for us. If you are watching your salt intake, ham is not really necessary to a good bagel sandwich. For the eggs, I always use egg whites and in this case, added fresh cut up spinach, fresh chives, and sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. You can add vegetables you choose, but I like spinach or kale.

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On the Go Bagel Sandwich with Egg Whites, Spinach, and Cheese

  • 2 honey wheat or multigrain bagels
  • 2 slices low fat cheese of your choice (I used provolone)
  • 2 slices round Canadian bacon/ham (optional)
  • 6 egg whites
  • 3/4 cup fresh leaf spinach cut up
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chives cut up
  • 1/4 teaspoon unsalted whipped butter
  • Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

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Slice the two bagels and toast. Mix together in a bowl the egg whites, spinach, chives, sea salt, and ground black pepper. Spray or coat with olive oil two small microwaveable containers. I used some clear plastic 1.25 cup containers with lids that I have from Rubbermaid. These containers worked well because I could loosely cover them with the lids laid offset on the top. Divide the egg mixture into the two containers, cover loosely with a lid or saran wrap and place in the microwave.

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Microwave for 50 seconds or for two eggs, stopping halfway through to slide a knife around the sides and add half the butter to the center of each lightly stirring in with the knife. Cover again and finish microwaving for the remainder of the first 50 seconds. Then microwave for 50 seconds or for two eggs again, still with a loose cover over the container.

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Remove from the containers from the microwave and let sit for one minute or more. The eggs will finish cooking. In the meantime, put a slice of cheese on one half of each bagel.  When ready and still hot, run the knife around the sides the egg container again, and with a spatula, remove each one carefully from the containers and place on the bagel half with the slice of cheese. This will melt the cheese. If using Canadian bacon/ham, add it now. Close the bagel sandwich by placing the other bagel half on top, and you are ready to eat or wrap in aluminum foil your bagel sandwich to go! You can make this the night before and refrigerate. Simply unwrap your sandwich in the morning, reheat it for 20 to 30 seconds, re-wrap in the foil, and go!

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My On the Go Bagel Sandwich with Egg Whites, Spinach, and Cheese is a great way to eat a delicious and healthy bagel sandwich when you are in a hurry! If you’re driving alone, re-heat and eat your bagel sandwich when you arrive at work, so you can drive safely! Or eat before you leave for work. You will save time in the morning making your morning rush easier. If you are sharing the drive on a longer trip, take turns driving, so each of you can enjoy your bagel sandwich. However you do this, be safe, have a great breakfast, and enjoy!

How to Take Your Art into the Next Dimension with Cricut
***The following post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. (sponsored post)

It started out as a doodle, something small, casually tossed in the margin of your grocery list. But somehow this graphic element took over and before you knew it, it became the decorative element to everything in your world. Unfortunately all those minute details that you added make it virtually impossible to transform it into the third dimension. Not true. If you can print it, you can cut it with the Cricut Explore machine.

Now with the newest feature of the Cricut Explore machine, you can choose your image (either your own or one of 50,000+ in the Cricut Design Lab), flatten the image and then click ‘Go’. Once printed, the Cricut Explore machine works its magic to bring your 2-dimensional idea into the 3rd dimension.

Take a look at this super short instructional video (less than 4 minutes) and see just how easy it can be…