Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mexican Calzones

I actually call these "Taco Pockets".  I made these a lot when both my husband and I ate meat (my kids aren't interested in taco meat yet).  Now we enjoy them with our left-over taco meat.  It's a little less messy with left-over meat too!  And yes, they are great in a vegetarian version!!!!


1 package refrigerated pie crust

1 pound ground beef or 1 package vegetarian meal starter crumbles
1/4 cup water
1 package taco seasoning mix
1/2 cup onion, chopped (optional)
1 cup shredded cheese
Toppings:  sour cream, salsa, lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese


Brown beef and onion in skillet.  Add water and seasoning mix.  Mix well.  Or use left-over taco meat!

Crust:  Cut each crust in half making 4 half circles.

Place 1/2 cup of beef filling in each.  Top with cheese.

Fold sides of crust over filling to make a pocket.

Crimp edges of crust to seal.

Pressed with fork

Place on ungreased baking sheet (or lined if you want to reduce the mess).

Bake at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes.

 Add your toppings and you are ready to eat!

Tabbouleh - My Dad's Recipe

This salad took a couple of "tastes tests" before I really started to enjoy it.  But now it is one that I crave at least a couple of times every summer!  I have found many versions of recipes for it.  This is the one handed down to me from my dad and is by far my favorite!


1 cup bulgar wheat
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tomato, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 1/2 cups fresh parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons dried chopped mint (you can use fresh - just increase the amount)
Salt & pepper to taste

What is Bulgar Wheat?  This is what I use.


Cover wheat with hot water for one hour.  Drain.  Add all other ingredients and mix.  Chill, covered, for at least 1 hour.

This makes a small amount so you will want to double for a "dish to pass".

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Volunteer Appreciation

I know, the official "Volunteer Appreciation Week" was a couple of weeks ago so you might say that I am a little late on this gift.  Who says that you always have to appreciate on the "Hallmark" holiday and not at other times of the year.  Don't get me wrong - I think it is important to remind us all that we should give thanks and appreciation for the people in our lives.

This specific gift can be used for others but we put them together to give to my daughters "Daisy Scouts" (the kindergarten level of Girl Scouts) leaders.  There are four special ladies that volunteer their time to help mold my little girl into a caring and responsible young lady!

We stayed with the daisy theme since flowers are a big part of the troops learning process.  My daughter made a card for each of them, I picked up some daisy seeds for $1 each (could use a potted plant if your budget allows), and we added a little note to pull the theme together "Thank you for helping Alexis bloom".  They are going into a large envelope and will be giving to the leaders at our next meeting.

School Bus Driver Appreciation

It's important to let your child's bus driver know how grateful you are for the care they provide in getting your little one safely to school and back!  It doesn't have to be something that will cost a lot of money.  It's just great to show them that you care.  My kiddos are always drawing pictures for their drivers and we also include them when baking treats through the year.   Next week is "National Teachers Appreciation Week" so we are recognizing the teachers and school staff in our lives.  This is a little something we put together for the bus drivers.

Between my 2 kids we have 4 bus drivers!!  I picked up these cute boxes for $1 each at Target.  I had my daughter make cards for her 2 drivers.  My son isn't really into art yet so I added a thank you sticker on the back of his boxes with his name.  Then I filled them with bags of my sweet & salty popcorn treat - using yellow colored chocolate.