Monthly Archives: July 2015

Mandarin Chicken Salad

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I found this recipe on “Mel’s Kitchen Cafe” and it is so good.  Just perfect for a hot summer day.  The night that I made it, I did not have time to cook and shred chicken so I picked some precooked at the store on my way home.  I found the best shredded chicken at Fresh Market.  It is in their Deli Department and they shred it themselves.  It is really good and was so easy to whip up the salad in about 15 minutes.  I ate this for several nights and never got tired of it.  It seems to keep a little longer with the shredded cabbage.  I did not have the chili sauce so I made the dressing without it and it was still really good.  We are not much for heat so I am going to try a little next time I make it, but not use all it calls for.


2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger (see note above)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1-2 teaspoons chile-garlic sauce (see note above)
1 clove garlic, finely minced or pressed through a garlic press
1 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper to taste
3-4 cups shredded cabbage (can use coleslaw mix)
3-4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
2 cans (11-ounces each) mandarin oranges, drained
3 cups cooked, chopped chicken (from a rotisserie chicken or this simple, stovetop method)
3 green onions, chopped
1-2 cups chow mein noodles or toasted, chopped almonds (or both)

For the dressing, whisk together all the ingredients and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use (it can be made several days in advance and refrigerated).
In a large bowl, toss together all the salad ingredients except for the chow mein noodles.
When ready to serve, pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine (add the dressing gradually if you like less dressing – you may not need to add it all). Sprinkle the chow mein noodles or almonds on top and serve immediately.


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Posted by on July 23, 2015 in Recipes


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Meet Walt

When Layne died, I told myself that I was not going to get another dog and go through this again ever!! The days that followed were terrible.  I cried at every reminder of that silly dog.  Even the littlest things would bring back a rush of memories and I would sob for hours.  I felt as if there was a big hole left where he had been.  As the days passed, I came to realize that with that deep loss, came a deep love that has brought us much joy and companionship over the years.  I would not trade that for anything.  I also realized that we were meant to have dogs in our lives and we had alot of love to go around.  I also noticed a sadness with Charlie.  He just didn’t seem to know what to do without his Layne.  That started the “browsing” on rescue sites and also trying to track down the breeder where Jace had gotten Layne from.  After some wise advise from Jace when he told me that he felt that we could not replace or replicate Layne with another German Shorthair, I just happened on a site for Weimeraner pups.  I had always thought these were so beautiful and had heard that they were somewhat similar to Shorthairs in personality.  So I talked Dave into just driving out with me to “look”.  This is when I knew how much Dave loved me.  He wasn’t ready for another dog and reminded of all that we would be taking on by starting over.  He told me all the logical things, but he went anyway to make me happy.

We drove out to West Ogden and the minute that we walked into the room with the puppies, I knew I was in trouble.  I think Dave did to because when I asked what he thought, He said “I will go get my checkbook”.  That was several weeks ago and yes all the things that Dave reminded me of were true.  I do remember one sleepless night thinking he was right and this was a big mistake.  But that was only one night.  Since then I have never doubted our decision.  Walt is a mini Layne and has brought us such joy in his short time with us.

Without further ado, Please meet Walt………DSC_0692

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Posted by on July 20, 2015 in My Favorite Things


And the Felt Food Fetish Continues

I am obsessed with my felt food.  I am not sure why I find this so addicting.  At the end of the day, after worrying about research trials, unhappy staff, mistakes and the constant pressure to be #1 in the country, I need something that takes my mind far away.  This does it for me .  I have added a few new items to my felt food collection and also a play grill for my felt cookout food.  I found this on pinterest and have added the link here:


It is so easy and pretty inexpensive.  I think I spent about $20 for all of the supplies.  These are just plastic bowls that I found at Bowmans grocery store in Kaysville, but I have seen them everywhere.  I think mine was $2.  I decided to spray paint mine the metallic silver  I used a hammered silver spray paint and it looks very authentic.  I also added some charcoals at the bottom.  I just used some spare floral foam that I had.  I carved them to look like charcoals and then spray painted them black and then added some silver to look as if they were burning.  I don’t think I would spray paint the bowls if I made this again, as the paint scratches off easily when applied to the plastic.  The bright colors would be fun for kids.   I also used a foil pie plate for my drip pan and I don’t like the look of that.  I am going to replace it with a small metal one to look a little more real.

I think it turned out so cute and will be perfect for the grandsons to come!!!

This is my latest Felt Food Dinner. I love this one.  I am not sure that kids will even know what all of this is, but I think it is awesome!!!!


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Posted by on July 16, 2015 in DIY, My Favorite Things


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My Planter Boxes in Progress

I added a post awhile back showing the wonderful planter boxes that Jace and Krystal built for me (and Jordan painted).  I thought it would be fun to show the transition over the summer.  These have created a little oasis for us, especially in the evening during these hot summer days.  I love to turn on my cafe lights and pull out the anti-gravity chairs and just chill.  I am going to invest in a fun little speaker system at Sams next to just top it off.  A little beach boys music, the sprinkler going, and  a cold dirty diet coke .  We don’t even need to leave our back yard.

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Posted by on July 11, 2015 in Home


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The Best Day for the Best Dog


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There are people that come into you life and make such an impact that you will never be the same.  I have had a few people in my life like that, but to be honest, I cannot think of anyone that has made an impact on me like Layne.  Now for those of you that know me, you know Layne.  He came into my life when my crazy son purchased him his freshman year at college.  He did that without asking his landlord or all of his roommates.  He became a constant companion of Jace that first year of college and could be seen sitting in the front seat of his truck wherever he went.  There was something very unique about Layne from the start and he wasn’t like other dogs.  We joked a lot that he never knew he was a dog and politely tolerated the other members of the canine species.  He was much more comfortable around humans and felt that was where he belonged..  He did not know what it was like to sleep on the floor, much less outside.  He preferred a bed and his favorite spot on the couch.  He was known to whine at the feet of visitors that had mistakenly sat in his spot. When Jace left on his mission, I know that leaving Layne was the hardest thing he had to do.  It would have been much easier to leave a steady girl.  I was given the job of taking care of Layne while he was gone.  I think those first few weeks that I missed Jace so much, I filled the empty space with Layne.  I think it was at that time we developed the bond that would grow and last for years.  We both missed Jace so much and having him close by me helped in a way that I cannot explain. The plan was that Jace would take him back when he returned, but by then the bond was not to broken.  He was mine. I cannot express in words the joy that dog brought me and the rest of the family during the ten years we were privileged to be his family.   Many times I would express what I would do if I ever lost him, but nothing prepared me for that day. I have often wondered why Layne meant so to me and I think I understand.  Layne loved me with all is heart.  Many dogs love and give love vey easily.  For Layne, his love and loyalty was given to a select few and those that had it, had it unconditionally.  Layne for some reason, chose me to love the deepest and I feel so honored to have had that.  When I was around, he could not be budged away from my side, even for his favorite treat cupboard.  He felt my happiness and my sorrow and had a way of easing the latter.  Every day, I looked forward to pulling in the garage, yelling out where is my boy, and listening for his impatient whine and scratch on the door.  He always brought me a gift to the door, whether it was a pillow, a sock, or anything he could find.  The joy was so evident in his eyes and I so looked forward to those moments. I can’t tell you how many nights Dave and I slept cramped to one side of the bed so Layne could sprawl out between us.  And for some reason, most nights it really didn’t matter. Several weeks ago, Layne started having some labored breathing.  It would come and go and I tried to convince myself it was nothing, but down deep I knew there was something wrong.  Within a week, the breathing became worse and he started losing weight.  Knowing that I was in for some bad news, I took him to the vet and my worst fears came true.  His lungs were full of cancer and they told us the best thing to do was to put him down.  As we left the vet’s office, I cannot express the sorrow that I felt. Jordan and I took him home and then proceeded to give him  his perfect day.  First I fixed him scrambled eggs and ham.  Then we bundled him up and put him in the car.  Jordan sat in the back seat and held him up as it was getting so hard to breath. We stopped for McDonalds and then ice cream and then headed to Antelope Island.  We just drove and drove with his head out the window watching the things that he loved so much.  Jordan and I just drove and cried.. When we got home, he was getting so much worse that I called Dave and had him come right home.  It was then that we went out in the backyard and said our goodbyes.  Dave had the difficult task of giving the medication, but it was done in such a loving special way, that no one else could have done the same for him at the end. This was probably the hardest thing I have ever done but I would not change anything.  You cannot hurt so bad unless you love so much.  I feel sorry for those that have not experienced this kind of unconditional love Layne taught me so many things and I am better because of him

  • He taught me to love with all my heart
  • He taught me to be loyal
  • He taught me that you don’t have to be perfect to be loved
  • He taught me the joy of simple things
  • He taught me not to hold a grudge
  • He taught me to always greet others with enthusiasm
  • He taught me the importance of giving gifts to others
  • He taught me that you should always eat treats
  • and so much more……..

Layne I miss you every day but I know that it would not be Heaven if you were not there waiting for me with a pillow. Video of Layne’s last ride!!!!!!

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Posted by on July 2, 2015 in My Favorite Things



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