Wednesday, November 5, 2014

What to Cook Wednesdays

I have decided Wednesday's will now be my recipe blog :) It's always nice to find new recipes right? Lately I have been a crock pot queen! I think I use it 2-3 times a week! I don't know if yall have ever heard of crock pot liners but if you love cooking in your crock pot as much as I do they are a miracle. They have them at the local grocery stores but I can never remember to look for them. So I'm always stuck soaking and scrubbing my crock pot... One day I will remember to write it on my grocery list and I will probably grab like 5 boxes at once.

Anyways I had been trying to figure out what to post as my first "What to Cook Wednesday". I finally decided I will do a crock pot meal and I will do our favorite crock pot meal. Chili. Not any Chili... TACO CHILI! Oh my goodness its seriously AMAZING! I'm not even lying. It may not be the HEALTHIEST chili but its really good. I got this recipe from The Patriotic Peacock. I honestly don't remember who recommended this recipe to me but I'm so glad I tried it.

We use about a pound of ground beef. Sometimes I use a pound in the rolls and sometimes I buy a little more than a pound in the packages. I just use what I have. But here are the ingredients

- A pound of cooked ground beef
- One packet of dry ranch dressing mix
- One packet of taco seasoning
- A large can of crushed tomatoes (28 oz)
- A regular can of diced tomatoes (14.5oz)
- A can of black beans
- A can of kidney beans(I switch off from light and dark kidney beans so get whatever you prefer)
- A can of corn

This is more than enough for my family of 4. My son normally has seconds and so does my husband, sometimes thirds..... I'm not judging you babe :) but we always have left overs. I always cook a side of corn bread and then we also sometimes may add some fritos if we have them. If you'd like you can also add some onions to the mix. If you double the recipe you could probably do half ground beef and half ground turkey. As toppings you can do cheese or sour cream. Whatever you prefer. Anyone else have a chili recipe they'd like to share? I may give it a try one night for dinner..

Saturday, November 1, 2014


I want to repeat the title DO NOT ATTEMPT!!

You can't say I didn't warn you.

Okay here goes. So a few weeks ago I got this bright idea to paint our bedroom. My ORIGINAL plan was to move out of this house in exactly a year. But my plan, the military's plan for Adam, and Adams plan for his military career kind of collided. So I decided hmm... why don't I just paint to give this place more of a homely feeling and not just a temporary white walls apartment feel that on post housing has..

I was pinterest inspired and decided in our room I would paint chevron stripes. Now again I will warn you chevron stripes are NOT... I repeat NOT as easy as it looks or sounds. It is not a quick project. It is a full day maybe even 2 day project. I did 2 different walls in our bedroom. A short wall that is the wall you see whenever you open our bedroom door and then the long wall that our dresser will be on. That wall you have to be in our bedroom to see it. I did the chevron walls and Adam did the solid walls. It took me about 12 hours(I didn't do all 12 hours at once) to do the long chevron wall and probably 4 hours to do the short chevron wall. It took him probably 4 hours TOTAL to do 3 solid walls.

Now IF you would like to know how to paint a chevron wall I will tell you what I used and did to paint my chevron wall.. I looked on pinterest to find a few different ways I could do it and then decided how I would do it.

What I used to paint my chevron wall:
- Paint(Olympic Teal Zeal)
- An Angled Paint Brush I'm pretty sure it was a 2inch
- A 9inch paint roller
- Tape(I just bought the cheap tape at lowes)
- A Paint pan
- Level
- Pencil

What next?? Now this is the hard part. Probably the hardest part you will have to do. If you are a perfectionist or extremely OCD I recommend you just hire someone. Or at least set aside a FULL weekend, I'm talking about all day Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. BTW for those of yall like me and think levels are like $100+, they are not. I bought our level for $4.99 so don't think you have to go out and buy this expensive level. Even though next time I need a level I will probably buy a small one too.. The one I bought was a long level so when it came time to do the chevron lines near the ceiling and floor it was a little difficult.

First, figure out what wall or walls you want to do. I wanted to do a smaller wall in my room first and I decided to measure the wall and see how small or big I wanted the chevrons to be. Since it was a small wall I divided the width of my wall by 4 because I knew I wanted 4 lines to make 2 chevrons. So I decided to make each line about 8 1/2 inches apart. You will use your level to draw straight vertical lines up your wall. And then again to draw straight horizontal lines on your wall. Use your level each time to make sure your lines don't start to leave. By the time I finished this wall completely and started preparing for the second wall(the much larger wall) I realized why don't I just put dots (you will put the dots where all the corners meet and instead of drawing horizontal and vertical lines you will just draw the chevron pattern from dot to dot instead of corner to corner.) I recommend drawing the lines from dot to dot or corner to corner because just putting tape down it can go off track and the lines help you make sure the tape is perfectly straight.
Now this part had me stumped. I was so confused haha but quickly realized how it needed to be taped. Let me see if I can put this in words. The spots where you want the chevron to be painted you will need to put the tape on the OUTSIDE of your line. So the chevrons you don't want to paint the tape will be on the inside. If you look at my picture to the left you will see some chevrons look skinnier than the others, the skinny ones are the ones that wont be painted the others will be. BTW all my chevrons are the same size the tape just covers more of the chevron that wont be painted. I also put tape inside of the chevron that wont be painted so I don't accidentally start painting the wrong chevron. I did 2 layers of paint and it turned out great with very little touching up. And then the moment of truth. It was time for the tape to come off.. I was terrified. Even though my small wall turned out great. This wall was so intimidating. I just knew it was going to look like crap! I knew I was going to end up laughing at myself and saying screw it paint it all one color haha. BUT I took the tape of and I was pretty impressed. I am freaking talented!
BUT I wasn't satisfied just yet :-\ in this picture you can't really tell but the walls are very yellow-ish or an ugly white. Plus my blue paint kind of bled through the tape to the white paint. Plus they were very dirty and also I had some blue spots that I needed to touch up. Well when I went to buy primer the primer and the paint didn't match!! AT ALL! So I decided hmmm... why don't I just paint the "white" chevrons WHITE! And make the lines cleaner in the process.. So I did just that. WHAT WAS I THINKING??? For future references those of yall that are like me and have no idea what your original wall color is. If you want the wall to be white and then one color chevron stripe. Do yourself a favor a paint a quick coat of white over the wall so that away you know the exact color white you are starting with. THEN do the chevrons. And if you need to touch up later you wont be in the same situation I was in. I did it the long way and had to tape all over again. But like I said it helped with making my lines much cleaner.

This time around I painted a little differently. This time I put the tape on the blue paint(I let it dry a full 24 hours before I even attempted this). You have to place the tape perfectly straight along the chevron lines you already painted. You will first paint over the tape the color your paint is under the tape. So say your tape is on the blue paint like mine is you will first paint a little blue on the tape like I did at the top left. Let it dry COMPLETELY and THEN paint the whole area the second color(my second color was white look at the bottom part of the picture that is my first coat of white, I painted 2 or 3 coats of white to get it to completely cover all of the blue). While the paint is still fresh and wet take off the tape. This prevents the paint from drying and coming off with the tape.

NOW if you are smart and have learned ANYTHING from this blog post this is what you will do.. Say you want your wall to be grey and pink. You will paint your WHOLE wall grey. You will let it dry over night and then you will come back the following day. Take a DEEP breath. AND! Use your level. Plot your points and tape away. BEFORE you paint your pink chevrons you will paint a little grey over all of the tape and let that dry(if you do a light coat of grey like I did with my blue and don't cake it on it will dry by the time you start with the pink.) I would do at least 2 coats of pink and once you do the second coat take the tape off as you are painting. TA DA! Then pour yourself a glass of wine... Learn from my mistakes! Then you can go back the following day and you can do touch ups.

We had a few minor accidents along the way. The first one was ALL Adams fault!! haha. He called while I was painting the blue chevron stripes and this happened. The paint can was FULL and as I got up my leg hit is and it ALMOST fell over. Thankfully it only got a little on the carpet and didn't COMPLETELY fall over. Brynna decided she would try cleaning it up with paper towels. And that evening as Adam watching youtube I explained to him in great detail what happened. As he was walking into the bedroom to take a shower he see's the paint spill and yells down the stairs "WHAT HAPPENED". I knew as I was explaining the paint spill to him earlier he wasn't

I swear..

The following day as I was painting the white stripes close to the ceiling I look down from the ladder and the darn primer paint can falls over! ALL THE WAY OVER! I guess its a good thing we have crappy cheap carpet in on post housing. After all the paint spills Adam thought it'd be a good idea to get in a paint fight. Thankfully though we didn't get anything on the carpet or my chevron walls! I would have killed him if he messed up my walls!

Even though this painting project took forever and a day and I decided to do it the most complicated way possible I'm pretty proud of our bedroom. I love the color I picked and I LOVE the chevrons. Now I can't wait for my furniture to get here and to get our bedding.