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Showing posts from August, 2018

Friday Favorites #12

Hello, friends! I survived the work week and now I am going to treat myself and my family to a week long vacation to Palm Springs, California!  I cannot wait to share our trip with you in future posts.  What are your plans for this Labor Day Weekend? I have had a blast collecting things to share with you this week. Did you know that September was Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month?  I did not, but I do believe that it is something that women should know, so I wrote a post on it and am giving away tickets to the Cardinals/Dodgers baseball game on September 4 to promote it.  The drawing is TOMORROW, so be sure to comment on my blog here to enter! MightyFIX I am in love with my newest subscription:  MightyFIX.  Each month you will be sent one amazing green product that helps strengthen the environment. This month I got 3 dryer balls which will cut my usage of dryer sheets.  Listen to this:  A car would fail an emissions test if its exhause were the same air that comes out of most
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September is National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

September is National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.  I am a cancer survivor so I find it very important to spread aware of the signs and symptoms of this hard-to-diagnose cancer.  The truth is that 22,000 women are diagnosed each year, and 15,000 die each year.  We can do better! Know the symptoms! Ovarian cancer shows up in women in their 50s and 60s primarily although younger women have been diagnosed with the disease.  The symptoms are subtle and are bloating pelvic or abdominal pain difficulty eating, or feeling full quickly urinary urgency or frequency There is no screener for this cancer, if you have symptoms like above and they last more than two weeks, seek advice from your physician. There is a 95% survival rate in the first five years if detected early.  Be your own best advocate! For my Saint Louis readers, there are a number of events this September to heighten awareness of this cancer.  Check these out: September 4~Cookie Baking for Survivors at
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Fresh Peach Daiquiri

When peaches are available in abundance, it is time to make Peach Daiquiris~ and here is a simple and delicious recipe that you will love. The full flavor of the peach, the sunshine and the sweetness. The juices have a viscosity to them that is a little thinner than syrup. At its peak ripeness, the flesh will be soft and be less tart than an unripe peach.  I eat them like an apple, with my head over the sink. I love my frozen drinks, so it was easy to decide to make this one frozen!  When I was making these delicious drinks, it was in the 90s and the drink was so refreshing and cooling.  Here's how to make a Fresh Peach Daiquiri 2 oz rum, Malibu is a good one! 3 oz sweet and sour 1/2 fresh peach, sliced, one slice reserved 1 c ice Place all ingredients in your blender.  The drink should be smooth and no ice bits hanging around.  Garnish with another fresh peach slice or mint (we are so loaded with mint that I chose mint for our garnish, oh, and I ate the le
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Friday Favorites #11

Hello, friends!  My work week was a little crazy and in fact, I was away from home for two nights.  I am just got back on Thursday and attended a Books and Booze Party within minutes of coming in the door!  Today I am driving two hours north for a one hour meeting!  That's crazy, too!  Our weekend plans are so fun!  A dear friend is celebrating her 40th birthday with a party at the Wine Bar here in my community!  Cannot wait to celebrate her!  My husband's band plays at a new place on Saturday and on Sunday I am going to see Crazy Rich Asians with some friends.  I'll be gearing up for another busy work week next week! Golf Cart Tour There is a canal that runs through the middle of our community.  The canal opens into two small ponds and goes under several bridges.  I am standing on the bridge where the canal splits into two ponds.  You can see one of the bridges and a nondenominational chapel in the background.   New Starbucks Drink I read about a new S
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Crack Yourself Up Jokes for Kids #ourgoodlifebooklist

I am a retired educator.  I spent 15 years in the classroom and 14 as a school administrator.  I have to say, my time in the classroom was a complete joy for me.  I loved working with children directly, having conversations about their learning, hopes and dreams, and how they navigated life. I am fortunate that I have former students that are now classroom teachers themselves.  One of them, Madeline, sent out a request that we adopt one of her students and send a positive note for their school year, telling them how important education is and that we are sending positive thoughts (mine in the form of prayer) to them every day. Well, I jumped on that bandwagon and started putting together a small box of goodies for my student (a boy.)  I included the book Crack Yourself Up Jokes for Kids by Sandy Silverthorne.  Why?  Because I remember as a teacher that sometimes it was hard to get boys to read. I am hoping this third grade boy finds this book as funny as I did! Stock full of
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Dollar Tree Fall Wreath Tutorial #pinterestchallenge

Welcome to the August Pinterest Challenge Blog Hop, hosted by My Pinterventures . The purpose of this Pinterest Challenge is to motivate all the participants of this hop (and you too) to not just pin, but to make it happen! This month, I chose to create a Dollar Tree Fall Wreath. To join next month's #pinterestchallenge, click here to sign-up ⇒ September Pinterest Challenge. I was inspired to create my own wreath after seeing the cutie made by Kristen at Peppermints and Cherries.   Her cute wreath was made for spring but I saw the potential for making this wreath a fall one once all the fall goodies were out at Dollar Tree. To make my Dollar Tree fall wreath you will need: 1 wire wreath 2 rolls of burlap ribbon hot glue gun and glue bows  3 branches of fall silk flowers First I always take off all the price tags and snip off the flowers from the branches.  I take the wrapping off the ribbon and heat up my glue gun.  When that is all done, I am ready
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A Rumored Fortune #ourgoodlifebooklist

I was given this book for free in exchange for my  honest opinion. All opinions are my own. Most of you know that I love a good historical romance.  I have reviewed many here at Our Good Life and I am happy to recommend others, just ask! I adored the setting of this book, an old castle with a huge vineyard.  Doesn't that already give you goosebumps?  The book doesn't disappoint, the author successfully weaves the setting into the plot, making the reader want to go and spend time here.  The book's premise is that Tressa, the daughter of the late Master Harlowe, needs to find a treasure that will save her mother and herself from destitution. She's not the only one who wants to find it, so does Donegan Vaughn, the new manager of the vineyard that was the pride and joy of Master Harlow.  Tressa herself spent much time in the vineyard with her father, and she is uneasy with Donegan working with the vines, as her father had a special plan for them that Doneg
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Individual Peach Short Cakes

In my third of a series about peaches, I wanted to share with you a quick and simple recipe that is perfect for a crowd.  These Individual Peach Short Cakes are a fabulous way to use fresh peaches, which are at the top of their season, right now! My daughter made these for a book club event she attended recently.  She needed to take a dessert and wanted something a little different from cake, brownies or cookies.  We had just went to a local farm stand and had bought these great peaches.  This isn't so much of a recipe as it is an assemblage.  To recreate this dessert, peel and chop 1/2 peach per person.  Keep the juices.  Set aside.  Make homemade whipped cream, or use cool whip or even the whipped cream from the can.  I know some people have made a whipped topping from coconut milk and that would be great, too!  Next, use a store bought shortcake, southern style biscuit, or a homemade shortcake that you love. Layer in this order:  in a decorative container, or even
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Friday Favorites #10

Welcome back to my Friday Favorites!  I had a nice and quiet work week, which is good, because next week will be busy!  Our weekend is TOO full.  Have you had weekends like that?  Listen to this:  On Friday I am headed to an art fair from 4-5, then to dinner wih friends from 6:30-8:00 then to hear my husband's band from 8-midnight.  On Saturday I am going to a daylily sale, to a friend's anniverary celebration (she lives 2 hours from me) and then to scout out some bars for my husband's band.  On Sunday, I (hope) I am heading to see Cyndi Lauper and Rod Stewart in concert!  That's nuts, right? Ok, so given this weekend, I am trying to do all kinds of things to get ready for my busy work week next week today.  Do you operate like that, too?  I sometimes get so stressed about my organization (or really, lack of) that I really wish I had my own administrative assistant. JK, or maybe, not? Let me share with you my goodies from this week: Golf Cart Tour Our neighb
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Cauliflower Gratin inspired by Julia Child #fantasticalfoodfight

Happy birthday, Julia Child! I am so excited to be a part of today's Fantastical Food Fight fun as we celebrate Julia's birthday. Thank you, Sarah, for creating this theme!  If you'd like to join us as we celebrate different themes each month, find us here!   To celebrate, I made this cauliflower gratin, a lighter version, inspired by her decadent one! Our challenge was to create one of Julia's recipes, or use one of hers to inspire one of ours!  My family is watching their food intake, so I wanted to be respectful of their work yet provide a tasty dish to all of you.  Here's what I came up with. A creamy white sauce, using lower fat milk and less cheese.  To keep the dish decadent, I add swiss cheese to the top of the sauce before baking. I use less cheese overall, but still enough to feel like the dish is amazing! Yield: 6 Author: Terri Steffes Print Recipe With Image Without Image Cauliflower Gratin prep time: 10 mins cook time: 40 min
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Quick Tarts for School Lunches #FestiveFoodies

I've joined a new group on Facebook called Festive Foodies. I am so excited to be a part of a group of wonderful food bloggers.  Many fresh food ideas will be coming your way!  Today we are sharing a bunch of ideas for back-to-school, quick lunches, breakfasts and even a few dinners to make your week go smoothly. I adore tarts and hand pies. I make them very simply, with store boughten pie crust, jams and leftovers.  Today I'm sharing two tarts:  a blackberry tart that is good for breakfast or dessert, and a tart made from the leftovers of this chili I made last week. What I love so much is that they can be held in your hands and that they are so versatile that you can change up the fillings with whatever you want!  Another added bonus: they are delicious at room temperature! Yield: 2 Author: Terri Steffes Print Recipe With Image Without Image Quick Tarts prep time: 20 mins cook time: 10 mins total time: 30 mins Quick tarts for using up leftovers, per
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Peach Flat Bread

This is the second in a series of Sunday posts about peaches.  We like Calhoun County peaches from Illinois.  The county is known for its peaches in the summer and apples in the fall.  There are orchards all over the county, which makes it a destination place where you can bird watch, antique shop or visit historical places.  We are all about the peaches right now! I made this flat bread for my neighbors at a block party we had in our alley.  We are close in proximity and it is important for all of us to respect one another, which we do remarkably well!  The neighbors loved the flatbread as I could tell from my empty pan!  I had a lot of nice comments about it, too. The peach flat bread is super simple to make.  I use some store ready ingredients which helps it be a quick dish to make.  I love that I can whip it together in no time! Yield: 4 Author: Terri Steffes Print Recipe With Image Without Image Peach Flat Bread prep time: 10 mins cook time: 10 mins tot
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Friday Favorites #9

This week is a little better paced than last week.  My family and I went to the PGA Championship tournament at the Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis this week. More on this later. We plan to go back on Saturday for the Finals. I organized a fun back-to-school party for some neighbors and had a wonderful time meeting new people and chatting with them.  Our book club met and chose a new book.  More on that later, too! What about you?   I love hearing about your upcoming plans and all that you have done this week. We are all busy people but I think one of the best ways to build relationships is to be able to ask questions about our lives.  Alli, did you find a new book to read?  My friend Kerry remembers the landslide that Cottage by the Sea refers to.  That was such a sad event.  Amber, did you get some Oui? Let's get started on my Favorites! PGA Championship The PGA Championship is being held in St. Louis this weekend, at the gorgeous Bellerive Country Club in Town
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Spicy Chili with Kielbasa

I have been pondering a chili recipe that features one of my favorite meats, kielbasa.  I do love my traditional chili, so I don't want compromise that taste.  This month for Improv Cooking Challenge we were asked to come up with recipes using both Ketchup and Mustard.  So this chili was born! Do you love kielbasa as much as I do?  I love that it is so convenient and has amazing flavor. In this Spicy Chili with Kielbasa the smokiness adds a depth of flavor to the chili that makes you swoon. I love that you don't have to set up a smoker to get that flavor! The ketchup and mustard do add a wonderful layer of flavor without having to do a ton of seasoning. It surprised me that it added the "spicy" to the Spicy Chili with Kielbasa recipe! Sooo.... are you ready to make some chili???  Yield: 6 Author: Terri Steffes Print Recipe With Image Without Image Spicy Chili with Kielbasa prep time: 5 mins cook time: 40 mins total time: 45 mins A traditional
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Vegetable Garden Soup with Italian Meatballs #TasteCreations

Goodbye to Summer, Hello Summer Produce!! The produce of summer!  That's what Taste Creations bloggers are sharing with you in August. It is back to school time and that means money for clothes and school supplies, so use budget-friendly ingredients for meals in order to bank some bank! Our vegetable garden did pretty good this year.  All the veggies in this recipe were grown by us or by generous friends. We got our zucchini from a friend who had a bountiful crop!  For me, summer doesn't necessarily say "soup" but with the summer veggies and the ease of frozen meatballs, this is a great dish to serve anytime. Yield: 6 Author: Terri Steffes Print Recipe With Image Without Image Vegetable Garden Soup with Italian Meatballs prep time: 20 mins cook time: 40 mins total time: 60 mins Fresh summer produce and frozen meatballs make this an inexpensive and quick dish to make. ingredients: 1 green pepper, chopped 1 medium zucchini, chopped 6 Rom
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