I told you I had a drink for you! 

I am a big fan of a drink on Christmas. Because I can’t handle the chaos. The stuff everywhere, the screeching children, the dog eating all the chocolate Santas. It’s just a lot for my tiny brain to handle. 

So I like a Christmas drink. 

I especially like a Christmas drink that’s sparkly and sweet and could technically pass for breakfast since it’s got orange juice and fruit. That’s a healthy breakfast? Right?

I’ve gotten to where I really like super simple sangrias. I don’t love fussing with a simple syrup so this is literally just fruit, wine, and champagne with a splash of orange juice. I feel like between the fruit, the wine, and the orange juice, it’s plenty sweet but if you wanted a simple syrup, you could totally go for it. Or add Sprite, 7Up, whatever. 

This is probably the last post I’ll put up before Christmas so I hope you you have a wonderful holiday if you celebrate and if not, I hope you just enjoy time with your family. I’ll be posting a lot on Instagram, I’m sure, so make sure you’re following me there to keep up with the shenanigans as we roadtrip across the country! 

Click for the full recipe

8

Crockpot Cinnamon Roll Casserole

I have to tell you a story about this casserole.

A few days before my husband left Afghanistan, he shared this recipe with me on Facebook. And he never does that. He very rarely has requests for me and he especially never goes searching for recipes. But he really, really, really wanted me to make this. 

So I bought all the ingredients and made myself a timeline for Thanksgiving Day (the day he got home) that included putting these in the crockpot before we left to get him so they’d be ready by the time we all got home. Well, you know me, I got distracted taking selfies and watching the Macy’s parade and it just didn’t happen.

Right after Thanksgiving, my husband went back on his diet which is kind of Paleo but yesterday there was a Sonic Cherry Slush so not really Paleo. I don’t know. Whatever. And then I kept forgetting to make it on his cheat days. 

But now I’m in major clean out the fridge mode because we’re going away for Christmas. So I had to make it. On a day he couldn’t eat it. And I think he kind of hates me now. 

It’s so good and so easy. It starts with refrigerated cinnamon rolls and the only work you have to do is whisking eggs and heavy cream. It’s the perfect holiday morning breakfast because prep literally takes minutes and then you can just walk away while you open presents or hang out with the fam or just drink your coffee. 

Click for the full recipe

11

Welp guys, sorry I haven’t been posting Christmas cookies and treats like I’m supposed to be doing.

I’m the worst.

I wish I could be one of those bloggers who had hundreds of posts lined up and ready to be published. Nope, I have exactly none. I pretend it’s because I like to live in the moment and blog about what my heart wants me to. But let’s be real, I’m just a horrible procrastinator. Like I said, I am the worst.

So yeah, my husband came home a couple weeks ago. On Thanksgiving, actually. It’s quite a different experience this time around. Last time he returned from Afghanistan  – because of how the war was going and probably because it was his first deployment – things were just bad. Just really, really bad. 

This time, it’s been really easy. It kind of just seems like he’s been gone for a week instead of 9 months. Whereas last time, it took us about 7 months to get to a good place. It’s crazy different and I’m very grateful for it. 

But I’m finally here with a Christmas treat! I’ve been meaning to make Saltine Toffee for years and years but I always run out of time and energy – finally managed to get it done this year! And I added peanut butter because why not? And peanut butter M&Ms because… duh.

It’s delicious. And I hate Saltines with a fiery passion. But the sugar mixture and then the peanut butter and then the chocolate… it’s just sweet and salty and I love it. 

I do have more Christmas-y recipes coming. Hopefully.I’ve had several cookie fails lately so we’ll see. I’ve got a drink coming for sure. Don’t even worry about that.

Click for the full recipe

8

I have an exciting giveaway for you today! 

A bunch of my blogger friends have teamed up to give away a $500 Visa gift card to one lucky person. And just in time for a Christmas shopping spree! 

Enter below using the Rafflecopter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway will begin at 7am est on Sunday, December 7th 2014 and run until 11:59pm est on Saturdaynight December 13th, 2014. One winner will receive a $500 Visa Gift Card that will be shipped via US Mail. The winner must live within the the United States or US territories. Sorry – many Visa Gift Cards cannot be used outside the US. Visa is in no way affiliated with this giveaway. Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram are in no way affiliated with this giveaway. The winner will be randomly chosen on December 14th 2014 and will be notified by email. If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen and contacted via the same method.The winning entry will be verified. If it is determined that the task for the entry was not performed, the entry will be terminated and another winner will be chosen. Social media outlets that are used as entries MUST be valid, active and real accounts. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited.

2

I feel like it’s about time I update you on my AeroGarden! Last we talked about it, I was mildly obsessed and carefully analyzing the growth of each herb every morning while my coffee brewed.

Guess what. Nothing’s changed.

Except now my herbs are HUGE.

And this is after trimming everything and using some of pretty much everything. They are growing so fast! I cannot even believe that I grew all this. By myself.

I’d just made a ginormous batch of salsa when I took this photo which is why the cilantro is so small. But trust me, within days I’ll have enough to make more salsa!

And I left the water cap off for the photos so you guys could see how easy it is to add the water and the nutrients. Every 14 days, a little reminder pops up for the nutrients and right now, I’m adding water pretty much everyday. Which I think it a good thing since my plants are growing so fast and so big.

I find that I am going through cilantro like crazy! Prior to having my AeroGarden, I avoided using too much cilantro because it gets expensive really quick but man, I am loving having my favorite herb right in my kitchen. I used it in both the sauce and to garnish these enchiladas and it’s just so delicious!

You can find the AeroGarden 3SL at Walmart and the ULTRA LED at Costco, as well as AeroGarden.com.

There’s a Twitter party on December 9, 2014 at 9 pm EST / 6 pm PST that will feature a giveaway of 6 AeroGarden units! Register for that party here. And I have a surprise! I’ve got one of the questions for the Twitter party! 

What Herbs are included in the (7 pod) Gourmet Herb Seed Kit?

And finally, there is a Facebook giveaway at Kitchen Play with one ULTRA LED AeroGarden unit being given out per week from November 22, 2014 to December 23, 2014. Make sure you check both of those out!

 

Ground Beef Enchiladas

Ingredients

For the sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons flour
1 (15 ounce) can chicken broth
1 chipotle in adobo sauce, minced (plus 1 - 2 tablespoons adobo sauce)
salt and pepper
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
For the enchiladas:
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound lean ground beef
salt and pepper
10 small corn tortillas
1 cup Mexican cheese
sour cream and cilantro, for garnish

Instructions

  1. To make the sauce, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until smooth. Slowly add in chicken broth, whisking the entire time. Add chipotle, adobo sauce, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil; lower to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, just a couple minutes. Stir in cilantro.
  2. While the sauce is simmering, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, until 30 seconds or so. Add the ground beef, season with salt and pepper, and cook, breaking it up as you go, until no pink remains. Drain and return to the pan.
  3. To assemble the enchiladas, preheat the oven to 400F. Spread about ¼ cup of the enchilada sauce in the bottom of a casserole dish.
  4. Stack the corn tortillas on a microwave-safe plate and cover with a damp paper towel. Heat in the microwave for 45 seconds or until they are soft enough to not split when you roll them.
  5. Put about 2 tablespoons of the beef mixture into each corn tortilla and roll up. Place seam side down in the casserole dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas and beef mixture. Top the enchiladas with the remaining enchilada sauce and sprinkle with the cheese.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Top with sour cream and cilantro before serving, if desired.
http://fakeginger.com/2014/12/01/ground-beef-enchiladas/

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Kitchen Play and Aerogarden. All opinions are mine.

13