How is everyone? Is everyone gearing up for Halloween or Day of the Dead? I am so ready! After an awesome summer and plenty of adventure with my best friend I am really ready for fall and it’s adventures.
In the last few years I’ve started celebrating Day of the Dead. I love the history and meaning behind it. I’ve put up my papel picado, my altar and some colorful decorations along with fall and Halloween decorations. It’s a bit hard melding all these seasons/holidays together but so far it’s worked. This year I decided to make a wreath for Day of the Dead or Dia de los Muertos.
As per usual I try to use things I already have on hand and this year I chose to use a sombrero that belongs to my oldest son. He wore it when he was just a little tiny guy! I haven’t been able to get rid of it and I’m just so sentimental when it comes to my children. The sombrero was perfect as a base for the wreath.
It turned out gorgeous and will only be used indoors so the sombrero doesn’t get ruined with bad weather.
It was so inexpensive to make. The flowers, skull and all the ribbons and mesh were purchased at Dollar Tree–Thank you! I already had the sequined sticks. How gorgeous is it!!! I love the bright colors!
What fall holidays do you celebrate?
I didn’t write out a full post on Friday because I was exhausted from Halloween…so here’s a quick recap!
The Halloween excitement started at work! Since I work at an elementary school we dressed up as a team. The office was “The Three Little Pigs”. I didn’t make too bad of a pig. I prefer to think of myself in this picture as Señorita Piggy! I am kind of sad that Halloween is over!
There was so much excitement for Halloween and what happens? It ends up raining all day! My brother and his family came over and so did my cousin and her family. There was a break from the rain for about an hour in the evening so we were able to go trick or treating for a little bit even though we got a bit wet right before getting home! I had bought sooo much candy to pass out and I still have almost all of it because the rain scared all the ghouls! I guess the trick was on me!
I did make some delicious and filling chili for our Halloween dinner. It was delicious! It was definitely comforting after getting a bit soaked with the rain.
The good thing about chili is that is so versatile as far as how you eat it. We also made chili dogs with it.
Friday was definitely exhausting after all the Halloween hoopla. Saturday I cooked almost all day. I made a couple of different things.
We would have gone out to dinner but everyone is on such different schedules that it was kind of hard so we decided to cook at home.
The homemade sushi was quite good for the first time making it. I am sure there will be lots of practicing.
Since chili is such a filling delicious meal I suggest that all of you make this chili!
Chili by George
- 2 pounds lean ground beef (I used 1lb. beef and 1 lb. turkey)
- 1 (46 fluid ounce) can tomato juice
- 1 (29 ounce) can tomato sauce
- (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cups chopped onion
- 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- Place ground beef in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until evenly brown. Drain, and crumble.
- In a large pot over high heat combine the ground beef, tomato juice, tomato sauce, kidney beans, pinto beans, onions, bell pepper, cayenne pepper, sugar, oregano, ground black pepper, salt, cumin and chili powder. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours. (Note: If using a slow cooker, set on low, add ingredients, and cook for 8 to 10 hours.)
I am doing a November Photo Challenge on Instagram! It’s a lot of fun so far and pretty educational for me at least! Follow me on instagram to check out the daily pictures! You can find me at @micasayourcasa or on Facebook at Mi Casa is Your Casa
Sorry about all the pictures!I hope you all had a great Halloween and a great weekend too!
Happy Halloween! I don’t post too many pictures of myself because I am not photogenic at all. But today, since it’s Halloween I will make an exception.
This picture will either make you laugh or send you screaming…
Can you tell I work at a school?
This weekend was pure perfection. The fall weather was lovely and we had a wonderful time!
Saturday we went to a Halloween party. We had a great time with family and friends.
On Sunday we headed out to Chinatown to enjoy some food and a little shopping. I love going to Chinatown. We were able to walk around a bit, check out some of the stores and buy a few things. I offered to buy my husband this great tea.
We figured the tea probably didn’t work or there wouldn’t be so many bald or hair challenged men around.
The best part of course is the food!
The We had General Tso’s Shrimp, Chicken and BBQ Pork Steamed Buns, Three Happiness Soup and some Beef Fried Rice. We just all shared so that we wouldn’t eat too much!
We drove to China Town so we were able to enjoy the view our our fabulous city.
I haven’t really ridden too much public transportation since I was in high school. But I have made one or two trips on the “L” train. I had to take a picture of that “L” sign because my brother always makes fun of my being a non public transportation kind of person. It’s not that I have anything against public transportation it’s just that…I’m ashamed to say it…don’t now how to really use it! I am afraid to get lost! OK, I said it!
How does everyone feel about shrimp? I love shrimp. The only way I don’t like it is when I have to peel it. It’s just too much work. I like it to be nice and ready to eat! This awesome casserole was amazing. Look at all that yummy goodness.
I wish I didn’t have to share this…
Cajun Shrimp and Rice Casserole
- 2 pounds shrimp, peeled (I used medium shrimp)
- 3 cups cooked long-grain rice
- 2 cups stock of your choice
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup yellow onion, diced
- 2 cups bell pepper, roughly diced (colors of your choice)
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups fresh or frozen okra, sliced
- juice from 1/2 a lemon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can cream of shrimp soup (or any cream of soup of your choice)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (water may be substituted)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) cayenne pepper
- 1 (8 ounce) package mushrooms of your choice, sliced
- 1 cup white cheddar, grated (optional)
- 1/2 cup parmesan, grated
- Cook rice according to package directions omitting water for 2 cups of stock.
- Sauté onion and bell pepper in butter until wilted, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and mushrooms and cook another 3-4 minutes.
- Stir in okra, lemon juice, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add shrimp and cook for approximately 3 minutes until shrimp turn pink. Do not overcook.
- Add soup, wine and soy sauce along with rice and stir until blended completely.
- Stir in white cheddar.
- Pour into a greased casserole dish (I used a 9 x 13 dish)
- Bake 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted and casserole bubbles on the side.
This dish is actually pretty healthy I think. You can make it healthier by using brown rice instead of white rice. You can also use reduced fat cheese and probably add a few more vegetables than what is actually called for in the recipe.
Recipe source myinvisiblecrown
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Mine was just great! Saturday my bestie and I went to the Chocolate and Fine Dessert Show at Navy Pier. It was awesome! I had never tasted or seen such delicious sweets in my life! Here are just a few of the samples we had.
There were tons of chocolate and toffee samples. We had so many we didn’t even need lunch!
The chefs and pastry chefs that create these masterpieces are artists! They were amazing!
When I was young and we would go to Mexico there were these awesome sweet apples that could have pulled out our teeth or fillings. But we didn’t care. We ate them anyways. They were so good that it was worth the risk. We were lucky enough that after licking and finally eating the entire apple our teeth and fillings were still intact. I had such a taste for these apples that I had to find a recipe for them. In Spanish we call these “amieladas”. I had no idea what the name in English was but I just searched for whatever I could think of that they might be called in English and I found them…Candy or Candied Apples! I was so excited!
I had never in my life used a candy thermometer so I was really scared. It was super neat just watching the temperature raise on the thermometer. I was so relieved when the thermometer didn’t break and shards of glass (or whatever it’s made of) went into my eye. That would definitely have been like a Halloween trick!
- 12 small red or green apples, any variety
- 12 lollipop or popsicle sticks
- 3 cups white sugar
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup water
- ½ teaspoon red food coloring
Equipment: candy thermometer
Wash and thoroughly dry the apples as good as possible to get the waxy film off of them. Insert the lollipop sticks or popsicle sticks so that they are firmly positioned in the apples. Set the apples aside on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and coated with cooking spray.
Combine the sugar, corn syrup and water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a boil and cook the mixture until a candy thermometer reaches 300ºF (the hard crack stage).
Remove the candy mixture from the heat and carefully stir in the red food coloring (it may splash, so be very careful). You may have to add more than the designated ½ teaspoon, depending on the quality and strength of your food coloring.
One by one, carefully dip the apples into the candy mixture, swirling to coat them thoroughly and allowing any excess to drip back into the pan. Transfer the coated apples to the prepared cookie sheet and allow them to cool until the candy has fully hardened.
If the candy mixture gets too hard during the dipping process, simply re-heat it over medium heat and continue coating the apples.
You want to work kind of fast because the candy gets hard quickly. I wanted a heavy coat of candy on my apples so I dipped each apple twice. I should have let more candy excess come off the apples but I was so scared to make them that I just wanted to do it! Needless to say that candy excess did not go to waste…we ate it.
These apples were so delicious and brought back so many memories!
Recipe source justataste
First of all I want to say that my heart is with all the people on the East coast right now. It’s very apparent via the media that they have been hard hit by Hurricane Sandy. I hope that they all recover soon from everything going on out that way.
On another note, I love Halloween! The decorations, the sweets, the excitement of the kids! I really enjoy seeing all the kids running from house to house asking for treats! The sad part is that now a days so many people choose to not open their doors. It’s really heartbreaking to see kids walk away so sad from some houses. It’s all in tradition and fun everyone, please be kind and make the kids happy with just a little trick or treat.
Saturday I went out to a party and had a great time. I grew up in the 80’s and I loved the music and the clothes of the time so who better to dress up as for Halloween than…
My Julissa said I looked like a weirdo and My Man said I scared him. I just love Boy George’s music. I associate the 80’s with his fabulous music and colorful bright clothes and makeup. I wanted to be Boy George back then, so why not be him for Halloween now? Kind of weird in a way….but those were the 80’s. I wish I could dress like that every day. I would be super happy all the time I think!
Happy Friday! Thank goodness this week is over! I am looking forward to a busy but enjoyable weekend. On Wednesday I was feeling down in the dumps for a few different reasons. I wanted to keep myself kind of busy so I figured I would put together some kind of sweet to share at work on Thursday since it’s been a long week for everyone.
This snack certainly made me feel better!
Candy Corn Popcorn
24 cups air popped popcorn
16 0z. vanilla flavored candy bark (candy coating)
24 0z. candy corn mix
1. Pop your popcorn
2. Melt the candy bark in microwave in about 15-30 second intervals stirring to completely melt.
3. Mix popcorn, melted candy bark and candy corn mix in a large (and I mean huge) bowl and stir with spoon or clean hands until well mixed.
4. Spread popcorn mix on wax paper covered cookie sheets (I had 3 cookie sheets) and sprinkle with a little bit of salt to offset some of the sweetness. Sprinkle salt to your taste. Let sit on cookie sheet for about 15-20 minutes to allow it to dry. Break up if needed and store in large airtight container.
5. Share and Enjoy!
I wanted to share this with my co-workers and since there were so many I set out a little stack of Halloween themed muffin liners that they can serve it in and carry it off with them.
This is an easy great recipe to make for a crowd!