Tater Tot NachosERIN MCDOWELL

Introducing Tater Tot nachos. You read right: Tater Tot nachos. Chips are great and all, but crunchy potatoes are the perfect base for nacho toppings like spicy chorizo and melty cheese. Add your favorite salsa, a drizzle of sour cream, some green onions and cilantro and you’ve officially made yourself the most epic nachos ever. The fact that they come together in just 30 minutes? Well, that’s just a bonus.

  • MAKES 6 SERVINGS
  • START TO FINISH: 30 MINUTES

Ingredients

  • 1 bag Tater Tots
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ pound fresh chorizo sausage
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1½ cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • Sour cream
  • Salsa verde

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 425°.

2. Spread the Tater Tots on a baking sheet in an even layer. Bake until they begin to turn golden, 10 to 12 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, warm the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the red onion and cook until tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more.

4. Crumble the sausage into the pan and sauté until cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes.

5. Remove the Tater Tots from the oven and pour the sausage mixture evenly on top. Cover with the cheddar and Monterey Jack and return to the oven to bake until the cheese is melted, 7 to 9 minutes.

6. Remove the nachos from the oven and top with green onion, cilantro, sour cream and salsa. Serve immediately.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: You don’t have to be crazy to work here…we’ll train you.

HAPPY JANUARY 31 BIRTHDAY TO: Justin Timberlake 34, Portia De Rossi 42, Nolan Ryan 68, Victor Ortiz 28, Minnie Driver 45, Kelly Lynch 56, Carol Channing 94, Jackie Robinson (1919-1972), Suzanne Pleshette (1937-2008), and Zane Gray (1872-1939).

 

Sliding barn doors are big, but what if you don’t have a spot for one? How about using them as an eye-catching headboard instead? They’ll lend a rustic-industrial vibe to your bedroom and create a strong focal point. Just be sure to use sturdy mounting hardware so that the doors are secure. Note the pop of color on the ceiling, your 5th wall.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: I love that moment when you are ready to go to sleep and your brain goes: “Just kidding. Remember all the things you were stressing about?”

HAPPY JANUARY 30 BIRTHDAY TO: Phil Collins 64, Christian Bale 41, Gene Hackman 85, Vanessa Redgrave 78, Brett Butler 57, Dick Chaney 74, Boris Spassky 78, Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), Dick Martin (1922-2008), and Payne Stewart (1957-1999).

 

Philly Cheese Steak Stuffed Peppers

adapted from Peace, Love and Low Carb

1 lb Thinly Sliced Sirloin Steak (or you can use deli roast beef)
8 Slices Provolone Cheese
4 Large Green Bell Peppers
1 Medium Sweet Onion
1 pound White Mushrooms
3 Tbsp Butter
3 Tbs. Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper – to taste

DIRECTIONS:

Slice a thin piece off each pepper lengthwise, remove ribs and seeds.
Slice onions and mushrooms. Saute over medium heat with butter, olive oil, and a little salt and pepper. Saute until onions and mushroom are nice and caramelized. About 25-30 minutes. Salt and pepper the steak and saute in a little olive oil until just not pink. About 5 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400*
Add steak to the onion/mushroom mixture and stir to combine.
Line the inside of each pepper with a slice of provolone cheese.
Fill each pepper with meat mixture until they are overflowing.
Top each pepper with another slice of provolone cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheese on top is golden brown.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: I’d love to have a girl’s night out but I don’t currently own any clothes that can withstand the scrutiny of other women.

THANK YOU: Scott for doing my blog for a few days while I was at a buying trip in Toronto. Good Job.

HAPPY JANUARY 29 BIRTHDAY TO: Tom Selleck 70, Oprah Winfrey 61, Sam Trammell 46, Adam Lambert 33, Heather Graham 45, Melissa Gilbert 40, Katherine Ross 74, Justin Hartley 38, Isabel Lucas 29, Greg Louganis 55, Ann Jillian 64, Edward Burns 46, Tommy Ramone 63, Nicholas Turturro 55, W. C. Fields (1880-1946), John Forsythe (1918-2010).

 

27 Jan 2015
January 27, 2015

Garage Storage Solutions

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This technique is so simple and will take away so much stress of having all those sport balls in your way and rolling all over your garage as a hazard. Simply use bungee cords to store the balls by nailing slats to the studs in your wall and create a pocket for storing sports equipment.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: It was dinner time on a British Airways flight from London to New York.  As the flight attendant moved down the plane, she asked one of the passengers: “Would you like dinner?”  “What are my choices?” asked the passenger.  “Yes or No,” replied the attendant.

HAPPY JANUARY 27 BIRTHDAY TO: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791), Lewis Carroll (1832-1898), Alan Cumming 50, Rosamund Pike 36, Anthony Pettis 28 and Frank Miller 58

26 Jan 2015
January 26, 2015

Pegboard Pullout Tool Organizers

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PEG BOARD SLIDES. Running out of wall space? Use peg board slides to store your tools vertically under the counter. These slides would work in kitchen base cabs.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: Q: Why did the belt get locked up? A: He held up a pair of pants!

HAPPY JANUARY 26 BIRTHDAY TO: Ellen DeGeneres 57, Anita Baker 57, Wayne Gretzky 54, Eddie Van Halen 60, Vince Carter 38, Bob Uecker 80,  and Paul Newman (1925-2008).

25 Jan 2015
January 25, 2015

Non-Traditional Ceiling Medallion

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Non-Traditional Ceiling Medallion

Jennifer Allwood

Blog courtesy of Jennifer Allwood Professional Kansas City, MO
I’ve been busy trying to freshen up the decor in my home and have started stealing from Peter to give to Paul….. taking from one room to use in another.
  • pottery barn wall art turned ceiling medallion, dining room ideas, wall decor
I’ve had this iron wall hanging from Pottery Barn on my dining room walls for 5-6 years. I’ve been bored with it there, but I haven’t been ready to get rid of it quite yet.
  • pottery barn wall art turned ceiling medallion, dining room ideas, wall decor
I had the idea of using it as a ceiling medallion in my office. This idea required me getting my husband to take down the existing light…. and getting our teenage son to help because SOMEBODY has to take the pictures.
  • pottery barn wall art turned ceiling medallion, dining room ideas, wall decor
You know what my husband is thinking right now….. it’s what every good husband is thinking when his wife has him in project mode. He’s thinking he adores me. And that he especially loves doing projects requiring wiring. And that he especially, especially loves holding extra heavy iron things over his head. Ha!
  • pottery barn wall art turned ceiling medallion, dining room ideas, wall decor
The piece had several holes to secure the piece to the wall (or ceiling). We used sheetrock anchors because I’m anti-stud finding. I wanted it up there regardless of the studs. Sometimes when you are decorating, you just gotta say studs, schmuds.
  • pottery barn wall art turned ceiling medallion, dining room ideas, wall decor
And I’m in LOVE with the end result! A little whimsical and a great re-purpose!
SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.
JOKE OF THE DAY: Two cowboy ranchers in Texas, they each had their own horse, but they could never tell them apart. So the first cowboy said, “I’ve got it!” The second cowboy said “What?” “I’ll shave the main on my horse.” Let’s do it!” So the cowboy shaves the main on his horse. But after a while the main grew back. The cowboys are having a really hard time telling them apart. Then the one cowboy said, “I’ve got it! “What? What? What’s your idea now? says the other” “I’ll cut the tail on my horse really small.” “Alright! Let’s do it!” So he cut the tail really short. But after a while it grew back. “Then the second cowboy said, “OK, this time I’ve got it!” You take the black one and I’ll take white one!!!!”
HAPPY JANUARY 25 BIRTHDAY TO: Alicia Keys 33, Xavi 34, Patrick Willis 29, Danny Woodhead 29, Chris Chelios 52, and Etta James (1938-2012), Robert Burns (1756-1796).

This blog is compliments of Kim Waldherr – Century 21 Real Estate Agent in Kelowna BC.

It’s basically British Columbia’s version of Napa.

For years, the Okanagan Valley, located in British Columbia, has been known as a mecca for skiing and snowboarding in winter, and golf, boating, and mountain climbing in summer. But recently, the region has become the hottest new thing in wine travel, with a reputation for making world-class bordeaux blends, pinots, chardonnays, syrahs and white blends—especially those from the Naramata Bench. Here are our picks for one of the most beautiful, welcoming, and adventurous wine regions in the world.

Sip 
Mission Hill Estate has won “Winery of the Year” from a slew of credible sources, including the International Wine & Spirit Competition and Canadian Wine awards. It also won “Best Pinot Noir in the world” at the Decanter World Wine Awards. And those are just a few of the medals in its trophy case. The winery itself is on the classy side of grandiose and features an amphitheater, private tasting rooms, video rooms, state-of-the-art cooking classrooms, caves (!), a lavish restaurant, and some of the best views in the valley.

A simple family owned and operated winery, Laughing Stock Vineyards makes rich, complex red blends and a Syrah that are powerful but elegant. The whites are also some of the best in the valley. All of the vino sells out quickly, and not just because it is limited production.

The Cross Family Orchards specialize in apples, but also dabble in all kinds of produce, wine grapes, and award-winning hard ciders. Kind, salt of the earth people, Glen and Loretta offer some of the best fruit, greens, and hard cider in the area.

Located on the valley floor, what Sperling lacks in views it makes up for in history and flavor. This old-school tasting room is small and laid-back, allowing visitors to focus on the earthy and unrefined style that makes its wines fun.

Painted Rock has earned a lot of recognition for its wines, and even the locals are excited about its flashy new tasting room. Perched atop a rocky hill overlooking a lake, this stark white room has visitors wearing sunglasses as they sip the vineyard’s crisp and refined wines.

High demand means you might have to wait outside the tasting room at La Frenz. Its earthy and juicy Syrah is well worth it, though, and taking photos in the flowery vineyards overlooking the lake will help you pass the time.

Located across the lake from Mission Hill, Cedar Creek started racking up awards in 2012 for its pinot, rosé, viognier, pinot gris and Gewürztraminer. Approachable and fun, but also complex and well made, these wines make a visit to Cedar Creek well worth it.

Stay
Sparkling Hill Resort is a European-style wellness resort home to impressive views from every room (even the showers), seven different Sauna rooms, two infinity pools, all kinds of wellness classes, and North America’s only cold sauna. It’s a bit of a drive from some of the wineries, but well worth it if you’re looking to escape and relax in style.

More of a pueblo-style resort than your typical inn, God’s Mountain Bed & Breakfast is conveniently located near Painted Rock and other top-rated spots. It features vineyards, views, relaxation areas, and even a roofless room for those who like to sleep under the stars.

The Cove Lakeside Resort is a great pick for families. Close to Mission Hill winery, it has a large pool with a waterslide, expansive views of the lakes and mountains, a boat rental shop just outside the grounds, and a respected restaurant.

If you’re into the traditional lodge vibe, check out Naramata Heritage Inn & Spa. Enjoy a view of the mountains from your room, and the cozy and romantic restaurant, bar, and patios.

Dine 
Terrace Restaurant at Mission Hill winery was voted one of the top five winery resorts in the worlds by Travel + Leisure magazine, as well as the Best Okanagan Restaurant by Vancouver magazine. It will impress even the most intense foodies.

If you’re looking for classic foods and a beautiful space, Peakfine at Sparkling Hill Resort has views from just about every table, and does a very good job with steak, lobster, and pasta. An impressive wine list includes options from many of the best wineries in the region.

Poppadoms is a well-kept local secret, specializing in creative cocktails and traditional Indian cuisine. Top chefs from all over Okanagan consider it a favorite.

Naramata’s Hillside Winery & Bistro serves tasty local bites on small plates with brilliant colors and flavorful vegetables. The menu is highly seasonal and changes frequently, and the food and wine pairings are artfully planned and executed.

The Patio at Lake Breeze at Naramata Bench Wine Farm is surrounded by gardens and flowers. If you’re looking for a romantic spot and love being surrounded by nature, this picturesque winery restaurant should be at the top of your list.

The Vanilla Pod at Poplar Grove winery has a cafeteria-style feel indoors, but also offers group seating outside with expansive views and tasty artisan dishes.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

FACT OF THE DAY: In 1900, it would have been considered a shocking breach of etiquette to wear a watch of any kind to a dinner party. It would have indicated, in the presence of company, that you had other things to do. – Gentleman’s Gazette.

HAPPY JANUARY 24 BIRTHDAY TO: Neil Diamond 75, Tatyana Ali 36,  Mary Lou Retton 47, Mischa Barton 29, Ed Helms 41, Aaron Neville 74, Johann Urb 38, Yakov Smirnov 64, Chad Hurley 38, Gennifer Flowers 65, Ernest Borgnine (1917-2012), John Belushi (1949-1982), and Sharon Tate (1943-1969).

 

 

 

Don’t toss those orphan socks — the singles who get mysteriously separated from their pairs between washing and drying can be helpful. Put them to use in a variety of smart ways to help keep your home a bit cleaner.

1. Dust Your Plants: Slip a couple of damp socks on your hands and give the leaves of your favorite plants the gentle touch for a dusting that won’t damage. Toss the sock in the wash when you’re done. 

2. Clean Your Blinds: Next, spritz those damp socks with vinegar or another cleaner you favor and use those dexterous digits to get in the nooks and crannies of your blinds for a deep clean. Toss the sock in the wash when you’re done. 

3. Deodorize: Socks are like satchels waiting to happen, so add some of your favorite good-smelling dried plant, like lavender, for a satchel you can stick in a linen closet, dresser drawer or anywhere you need it.

4. Say Goodbye To Spiderwebs: Grab a yard stick and an old sock to dust up in those high corner you can’t normally reach otherwise.

5. Save Your Swiffer: Don’t keep splurging on new refills for your Swiffer brooms and mops; just slip a dry or wet old sock on to keep Swiffering for clean floors. Tip spotted on First For Women.

6. Clean Your Baseboards: Your baseboards are a sad, often-neglected space, but a swipe of them every and now and then can make a big impact on your space feeling cleaner.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: Lord give me COFFEE to change the things I can change and WINE to accept the things I can’t.

HAPPY JANUARY 23 BIRTHDAY TO: Mariska Hargitay 51, Tiffani Thiessen 41, Julia Jones 34, Richard Dean Anderson 65, Chelsey ‘Sully’ Sullenberger 64, Julia Jones 34, Princess Caroline of Monaco 58, Brendan Shanahan 46, Jack Raynor 23, and Rutger Hauer 71.

 

22 Jan 2015
January 22, 2015

Storage Solutions For Small Kitchens

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Found these ideas on Scott McGillvray’s blog site. Thank you for the clever use of small wasted spaces.

Small Kitchen Storage Ideas

Fridge storage:

We’re serious, find and create those secret organization spots wherever you can! If you fridge has an open wall, consider adding extra storage space in it with some shallow cabinets facing out. This can be a good spot to store brooms, mops and even cleaning equipment that you want to keep out of reach of the little ones.

Spice Storage:

Every one has those extra few inches between the fridge and the wall make the most of small spaces . This can easily convert into a spice rack! Put it on wheels and pull it in and out whenever you need your favorite spices. This would give you so much extra space in your pantry!!!

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

DESIGN TIP OF THE DAY: If you have a painting that looks too small above your sofa, don’t center it. Offset it a few inches to the left. The negative space called “ma” becomes part of the image. – Richard Mishaan.

THIS DAY IN ENTERTAINMENT: 2008 actor Heather Leger dies in New York City at age 28 from a combination of prescription drugs and alcohol.

HAPPY JANUARY 22 BIRTHDAY TO: Guy Fieri 47, Steve Perry 66, Diane Lane 50, Linda Blair 56, Steven Adler 50, Carlos Ruiz 36, Christopher Masterson 35, Mike Bossy 58, Balthazar Getty 40, Beverly Mitchell 34, Piper Laurie 82, Sam Cooke (1931-1964), and Bill Bixby (1934-1993).

This application of a sheet or two of pegboard is brilliant…especially in kids rooms. The headboard can grow with the child, paint it more sophisticated colors as the child grows. CAUTION: Do not use small pieces of hanging hardware on your pegboard that a baby or small child can swallow.

You will need a wooden frame to mount the pegboard to. It is easy to find instructions on GOOGLE.

Baby: Use a section of pegboard as a utility station over and behind the change table and keep wipes, extra diapers, powder and all other baby needs in wire baskets or on convenient hooks.

Child: Move a single bed up against the pegboard. Use wire baskets for books and small toys.

Teen: Let them decide on a color for their pegboard headboard. By now it may need expanding or replacing. Now they can handle small hooks for hanging pictures, larger hooks for baseball caps, scarves and jewelery.

Adult: Go floor to ceiling and almost wall to wall with your headboard. This would cover an uneven wall in a rental or an older home and add a ton of extra storage in a small bedroom. Think of all the decorating possibilities.

Don’t limit pegboard to bedrooms either. Even a small strip of wall can yield lots of added storage.

SHARING: I do not claim all posts to be my own…I post the sites they are from if the source is known.

JOKE OF THE DAY: Some people should use Gluestick instead of Chapstick.

HAPPY JANUARY 21 BIRTHDAY TO: Mac Davis 73, BooBoo Stewart 21, Geena Davis 59, Billy Ocean 65, Jack Nicklaus 75, Robby Benson 59, Izabella Miko 34, Jill Eikenberry 68, Micheal Wincott 57, Placido Domingo 74, Stonewall Jackson (1824-1863), Wolfman Jack (1938-1995), Benny Hill (1924-1992), Telly Savalas (1922-1994), Christian Dior (1905-1957), and Ritchie Havens (1941-2013).