Thursday, May 29, 2014

#hiloskyeveryday2014 Week 22

Day 143 - This is how Sweet B brushes her teeth!  She has an Elmo toothbrush so she was half licking half kissing Elmo! 

Day 144 - Hands down my favorite snack ever! 

Day 145 - Pool time with Daddy!  The big pool isn't quite warm enough yet! 

Day 146 - Happy Memorial Day!  We celebrated with the season's first of many Grilled Chicken Summer Salads!   It's just baby spinach, cucumbers, strawberries, fresh mozzarella, sprouted sunflower seeds, and grilled chicken!  All organic!  Probably the healthiest thing that John and I eat! 

Day 147 - This was just one of those sweet moments...a moment where I realized my girls had been playing side by side for 10 minutes without fighting or whining!  

Day 148 - Lacie and Blakely ask for grilled cheese on a daily basis!  So about once every two weeks, I give in and make this for dinner.  And it usually happens when we are due for a big shopping trip at Wegmans!    

Day 149 - We spent a really fun morning at Sesame Place!  Even though Blakely and Mommy were getting a bit tired and ready to leave, Lacie wanted to go on Monster Mix Up (her favorite).  How could I say no?  She clearly loved it! 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

#hiloskyeveryday2014 Weeks 20 and 21

We have two fun filled weeks of #hiloskyeveryday2014 to catch up on!  That is a lot of pictures!!!

Week 20

Day 129 - Blakely loving one of the rides at Sesame Place!  Last summer, she was too small to go on most of the rides, but she is loving it this year! 

Day 130 - Happy Saturday!  Daddy was working a ton of overtime during the week, so we were all super excited to have him home!  

Day 131 - Mother's Day 2014!  This was my gift from John and the Girls!  You can read about my love for the Yankees in this post!  And of course, the fact that it is pink just makes it perfect!

Day 132 - This sweet little snuggle bunny just melts my heart!  

Day 133 - Whenever we head out for a walk, my girls always hold hands.  It is a sight that truly makes my heart explode with love and happiness!  When I found out that Blakely was a girl, I was so excited.  This was exactly what I pictured - sisters and best friends! 

Day 134 - True story...out of all the toys we own this is my children's favorite game...being pulled by someone with a jumprope.  Yup, just like walking a dog.  

Day 135 - This little cutie pie turned 1 1/2!!!  We, of course, celebrate half birthdays in the Hilosky House!  It's such a fun little family tradition!  You can read more about Blakely's half birthday celebration in this post

Week 21

Day 136 - all of the sudden, Lacie wants her picture taken all the time!  She will randomly say "Mommy Cheese" or "Mommy take Lacie and Blakely's picture."  

Day 137 - At the car wash! 

Day 138 - This girl loves brushing her teeth!  With a mermaid toothbrush of course! 

Day 139 - Oh Blakely!  I really think she knows how cute she looks in her sunglasses! 

Day 140 - So excited for some summer weather!  We headed over to Nana and Pop-Pops to go in the "pool" which of course means play with the water table!  Our pool won't be open until this weekend...but I have a feeling it is going to be very very cold.  

Day 141 - *sigh* Sweet B had her 18 month old well visit with the pediatrician.  Of course that meant she got a shot.  There was a ton of drama and tears.  She has the battle wound and sweet little bandaid to prove it.  

Day 142 - Lacie Jane's first haircut since she was 11 months this will be the first one she remembers!  She was a bit nervous at first, but then soon realized that she was a princess!  And of course everyone at the salon loved her!  She even got sparkles in her hair at the end! 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Blakely's Half Birthday

Last Thursday, our sweet Blakely Hope turned 1 1/2!  And of course, we always make it a point celebrate half birthdays in the Hilosky House!  Blakely's half birthday also happens to be the same day as John and my wedding anniversary!  We got to celebrate 5 years of amazing wedded bliss!  It was a pretty special day all around!

We always celebrate half birthdays with a half cake!  I simply make this by baking a box cake mix in two 9-inch round pans!  I cut each circle in half and pile three of the halves on top of one another to make a half cake.  If I used all 4 halves, it would be too tall.  For this particular cake, I used Funfetti Cake Mix and my Homemade Buttercream Icing!  Click HERE for the recipe!

Opening her half birthday gift with a little assist from Lacie!  We always get the girls a small gift on their half birthdays!  Nothing big, just something to make the day extra fun.  Blakely got a book! 

Let's Look Back at Blakely's First Half Birthday!!!

Look at this little 6 month old cutie!  I cannot believe how tiny she was and how much she has changed in just one short year! 

Her 1/2 birthday cake!  This cake was strawberry with the same Buttercream Icing on it! 

Daddy and Sweet B!

Me and my girl! 

If you want to read about Lacie Jane's half birthday you can find that post HERE

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

I Am In Love...with my hubby, my two girls, and LEMON!  I have been whipping up plenty of lemon treats around the Hilosky House.  You can click here and here and here for some other lemon recipes!  I have been slacking on making muffins over the past two weeks, and I just happened to have a few a ton of lemons sitting in the fridge!  So it just made sense for me to make Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins!

Your Shopping List:

  • 1 stick butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • zest of one lemon
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds 

Now Let's Make the Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  3. Beat in eggs one at a time
  4. Add the greek yogurt, milk, lemon juice, and lemon extract and mix until batter is smooth
  5. Stir in the lemon zest
  6. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda
  7. With the mixer on the lowest speed, add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined
  8. Stir in the poppy seeds
  9. Divide batter evenly between the muffin cups
  10. Bake for 20 - 23 minutes
  11. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely

Optional Glaze
  • In a small bowl, stir together 2/3 cup powdered sugar with 4-5 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Drizzle over tops of completely cooled muffins or dip muffin top into glaze completely
  • Allow glaze to harden before storing in an air tight container

Friday, May 9, 2014

#hiloskyeveryday2014 Week 19

Yesterday was busy busy busy!  You mamas understand!  So here is this week's #hiloskyeveryday2014 just one day late!  We're already on week 19!  

Day 122 - This sweet picture of Nana and Blakely is one of my absolute favorites!  Just look at that love!  We were at Sesame Place for the Season Pass Members Opening Day Party!  

Day 123 - So Many Bubbles!!!

Day 124 - A Sunday Family Walk!  It is so hard to get pictures of all 4 of us, and so we tried but Lacie would not look at the camera!  

Day 125 - Lacie builds with these blocks every single day.  Her latest thing is that she has to make lots of bridges and a castle.  Then, she specifically arranges all of her little Disney Princess figures!  

Day 126 - A much needed bath after a day of playing outside!  

Day 127 - We took out the water table for the first time this year!  I wasn't planning this (which is why they are in dresses and not bathing suits) but it was so warm and sunny that I figured why not?!? Then of course, as soon as I got the table out, the clouds rolled in.  I just love how Blakely's face is looking at me as if she's doing something she's not supposed to by playing in water!  

Day 128 - It's amazing that a simple grilled cheese can make my sweet child so happy!  She just loves to eat!  Lacie was literally bouncing up and down in her booster seat while I cooked it, and then she clapped when I put her plate in front of her.  Out of all the wonderful things I cook, she gets the most excited over bread and cheese...

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

One Pot Penne and Sausage

I have blogged about my love for one pot meals before!  Of course, what's not to love!?!  You cook dinner in one pot...leaving you only one pot to wash (or squeeze into the dishwasher) before you get to relax and unwind at night!

I promise this one pot meal is not lacking in flavors!  With only a few ingredients, this dish is a piece of cake to throw together!

Your Shopping List:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1 package (about 12 - 14 oz) cooked smoked turkey sausage, sliced into rounds
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies 
  • 2 cups chicken broth 
  • 8 oz whole wheat penne 
  • 3 cups of shredded Mexican cheese 
Now Let's Make the One Pot Penne and Sausage
  1. In a large skillet that is oven/broiler safe, heat olive oil 
  2. Add sliced turkey sausage and cook until brown 
  3. Add the minced garlic and stir, cooking until fragrant (only about 1 minute)
  4. Add the can of diced tomatoes, chicken broth, and penne to the skillet.  Bring to a boil, and then lower to a simmer.  
  5. Cook until most of the liquid (about 90 percent) is absorbed and the pasta is al dente 
  6. Stir in 1 cup of shredded cheese 
  7. Top with remaining two cups of cheese
  8. Place skillet under preheated broiler and cook for 2-4 minutes, until the top is golden brown
  9. Allow to sit for five minutes before serving 

A few notes:
  • you could definitely use regular sausage, but the smoked turkey sausage has so much flavor that you don't need the extra fat in the regular sausage to provide flavor.  If you did use regular sausage, you may want to drain the fat after it browns before proceeding with the rest of the directions.  
  • I used a "medium" can of diced tomatoes and chilies but you can definitely get the hot if you want it super spicy.  However, this had plenty of flavor for our family!  
  • I get a lot of emails from readers who do not like whole wheat pasta (or their spouses and children do not like whole wheat pasta).  While you can definitely use white pasta, I think that dishes like this are the perfect way to get reluctant eaters used to the texture of whole wheat!  They may not even know the difference! 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Lemon Oatmeal and Blueberry Jam Bars

I may be just a tad obsessed with all things lemon!  I have been buying lemons by the bag at Wegmans and using them in everything from baking to my drinking water.  Even little Lacie Jane is requesting lemon slices in her ice water...and drinking lemon and honey tea!  Her two year old palate is very sophisticated!  So last week when I was thinking about what I wanted to bake, I knew I wanted it to have LEMON!  I thought about some of the things I have already made, and decided to mix up my original recipe for Oatmeal and Jam Bars to make them lemon bars!  And what goes better with lemon than blueberry!  

These delicious bars come together with just 4 ingredients!!!  They also mark Cake Mix Recipe #36!!!

Your Shopping List:
  • 1 box lemon cake mix
  • 2 1/4 cups oats (I used old fashioned because I wanted these bars super chewy)
  • 2 sticks butter, melted
  • 1 cup blueberry jam

Now Let's Make the Lemon Oatmeal and Blueberry Jam Bars:
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and grease a 9x13 baking dish
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cake mix and the oats
  3. Add the melted butter and stir until a dough forms
  4. Divide the dough into thirds
  5. Press two thirds of the dough into the bottom of your prepared baking dish
  6. Spread blueberry jam on top of the dough - spread it almost to the edge 
  7. Crumble the remaining one third of the dough on top of the jam layer 
  8. Bake in preheated oven for about 25 minutes until the top is nice and golden
  9. Allow pan to cool on a wire rack completely, cut into squares, and store in an airtight container
If you can't find blueberry jam (or if you just don't like it) you could definitely make this with strawberry or raspberry jam!  

And since this has oats in it, you can totally eat it for breakfast!  


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