Friday, April 20, 2012

Step out of your box

How many of you are avid viewers of American Idol?!  This is the one show that I sit down to watch faithfully every week!  My daughters will watch it with me but my husband chooses not to.  He is a singer himself and it is especially painful for him during the auditions to watch the contestants.  He literally will cringe and leave the room in physical pain ;-)  I am a huge fan though and this years contestants are amazing. 

In an unexpected elimination, last night Colton Dixon, 20-year-old singer from Murfreesboro, Tenn, was sent packing his bags finishing the competition in seventh place.  His final song that he chose to sing on his departure was called Everything by Lifehouse.  What a testimony and excellent role model he is and I'm sure he has a great career in front of him. 

Colton was up against great competition and there are six other contestants left.  We love Skylar Laine and Jessica Sanchez and expect to see them in the top 3 in weeks to come.  USA Today reports that after Idol and the summer tour, Colton plans to continue pursuing his career in Christian music. 

Colton gave a great testimony in the clip below and showed humility and thankfulness for the opportunity that he had with American Idol.  He challenged everyone to step out of your box, out of your confort zone as we are all messenger and here to inspire one another.  Watch the clip below of this wise beyond years young man!

You can watch him sing his last song here as well as hear the judges give him word of wisdom on his future music career and check out Colton's facebook page

Monday, February 13, 2012

Italian Soup Recipe

I love, love, LOVE the Zuppa Toscana Soup from Olive Garden but after going through the Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace classes (which we would highly recommend to everyone), eating out is rarely in the budget.  We are dedicated to sticking to our budget and staying on last debt to go! 

I had looked up a recipe online some time ago and saved it to my computer.  Pulled it up, made a grocery list and went shopping on Friday to get my ingredients.  Have you ever bought Kale before!?  We certainly had not but we have now.  Wonder what I'm going to do with that extra Kale??  If anyone has another great recipe to use up my remaining kale...please comment and let me know!  Otherwise, we will just have to suffer (NOT!) through another pot of soup next week.

Time to give it a try.  I must say that it was very easy but a little time consuming.  It probably took an hour plus from start to finish to prepare and cook the soup but it was well worth it!!  We will certainly be adding this recipe to the recipe file! 

Note to Chef...turn on some Italian music, pour yourself a glass of wine and get cooking!  Delish!!

Makes: 6-8 servings

  • 1 lb ground Italian sausage
  • 1½ tsp crushed red peppers
  • 1 large diced white onion
  • 4 Tbsp bacon pieces
  • 2 tsp garlic puree
  • 10 cups water
  • 5 cubes of chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 lb sliced Russet potatoes, or about 3 large potatoes
  • ¼ of a bunch of kale

  1. Sauté Italian sausage and crushed red pepper in a large pot. Drain excess fat, refrigerate while you prepare other ingredients.
  2. In the same pan, sauté bacon, onions and garlic over low-medium heat for approximately 15 mins. or until the onions are soft.
  3. Add chicken bouillon and water to the pot and heat until it starts to boil.
  4. Add the sliced potatoes and cook until soft, about half an hour.  We used potatoes that we had in stock and I would encourage you to use more than what the recipe calls for.  We all felt like it needed more potatoes and we had thinly sliced them but will leave them a little thicker sliced next time.
  5. Add the heavy cream and just cook until thoroughly heated.
  6. Stir in the sausage and the kale, let all heat through and serve with some Italian sliced and buttered bread.  Delicious!

Buon appetito!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Free Movie Nights

Westfield Southcenter is offering "Romance in the Terrace" with free movie nights for you and your Valentine!  They even have an option for dates with your younger sweeties.  For all you locales, this sounds like a great day night at the right price!

Date:           February 7th - 9th

Time:          7:00 p.m.

Location:     Westfield Southcenter - 2800 Southcenter Mall, Seattle, WA 98188

Phone:         206-246-7400 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 206-246-7400 end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Details:        Whoever your Valentine might be, bring them to Westfield Southcenter for a romantic-themed movie! Come grab a bite, sit back and take in the show. Enjoy these fun, light-hearted favorites in the Dining Terrace: