Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Shutterfly Giveaway: First 100 bloggers receive 40 free Personalized Stationery Cards!

Shutterfly Giveaway: First 100 bloggers receive 40 free Personalized Stationery Cards!

31 Days To Build A Better Blog - Day 5

Today's challenge is all about communicating with our community. The task is to email a reader. I have emailed readers in the past when there is something specific I want to talk to them about in private.  I would rather carry on a chat in my comments section or visit readers back at their blog if they have one, leaving  a comment there. But by writing an email and trying to let them know by reaching out just a little bit more to say thank you. 

The reader's that I emailed for this challenge are so special because them following me in their busy lives, when in a world today you have a thousand little things to do and yet they make time for me and my blog.  This means a lot to me. 

I emailed 

Judy at cutest-little-things her blog is so sweet and so fun to read. I hope you enjoy her as much as I do. 

Dawn at  bee and rose. She is a stay at home busy mom of two and she is living a life of a women with a husband that is terminally ill, she like myself knows and understands how precious life truly is but still follows and reads my blog and that means the world to me. 

Kate at mommy monologues She is a stay at home mom working on her masters in social services. Her and I have so much in common with the things that she loves to do when she isn't being a mommy and wife. Kate is so funny through her writing and it means so much that she read and follows my blog. 

Thank you ladies for reading my blog. :) It means so much!  

Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

Chinese Chicken Salad


    * 4 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, divided
    * 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided
    * 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
    * 1/2 head napa cabbage, thinly shredded (about 6 cups)
    * 1/4 head red cabbage, shredded (about 2 cups)
    * 1 large carrot, shredded (about 2 cups)
    * 3 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced, greens included (about 1/2 cup)
    * 1 (8-ounce) can sliced water chestnuts
    * 1 (11-ounce) can Mandarin oranges in water, drained
    * 1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
    * 1 teaspoon minced garlic
    * 1 teaspoon minced ginger
    * 2 tablespoons canola oil
    * 2 tablespoons brown sugar
    * 1 1/2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce or chili sauce
    * 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil and brush onto chicken breasts. Arrange in a baking dish and bake until juices run clear, about 13 to15 minutes. Remove from oven, cool completely, and cut into 1/4-inch slices.

In a large bowl, combine Napa cabbage, red cabbage, carrot, scallions, water chestnuts, Mandarin orange and sliced chicken. In a separate bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil, brown sugar and chili sauce. Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine. Divide among bowls and top each serving with 2 teaspoons toasted almonds.

Chicken Summer Rolls

These crunchy Vietnamese-style rolls are healthy and light, and the addition of rice makes them filling. They're gluten-free, but anyone -- even adults -- will love them.

    * 1/4 cup rice vinegar, plus 1 to 2 tablespoons
    * 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
    * 2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (from a rotisserie or other leftover chicken)
    * 1 medium-large carrot, shredded (about 1 cup)
    * 12 (8 1/2-inch) rice paper wrappers (See note)
    * 1/3 English cucumber or 1 kirby cucumber, peeled, julienned, about 1 cup
    * 4 scallions (white and green parts) finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
    * 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, basil or cilantro
    * About 12 Boston lettuce leaves
    * 1/2 cup cooked brown or white rice
    * 1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
    * 2 tablespoons soy sauce
    * 3 tablespoons water

Whisk 1/4 cup rice vinegar with 2 teaspoons sugar in a medium bowl until sugar dissolves. Add chicken and carrot, season with salt to taste, set aside.

Fill a large bowl with warm water. Working with 2 sheets of rice paper at a time (keep others covered with a barely damp cloth to prevent curling), immerse papers in the warm water until slightly softened (about 15 seconds). Remove and spread out on a clean surface or cutting board. Pat dry with a towel to remove excess water. Lay 2 pieces of lettuce over the bottom third of the rice paper, leaving about 1/2-inch clear on edges. Place about 1/3 cup chicken and carrot mixture on the lettuce, top with 4 to 5 pieces cucumber, scallion, several mint leaves and about 1 heaping tablespoon of rice. Roll up the paper halfway into a cylinder. Fold both edges in to tuck while continuing to roll the paper to seal. Place the rolls on a plate covered with a damp towel so they stay moist as you prepare the remaining rolls. Cut rolls in half and wrap in plastic wrap or place in an air-tight container.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the peanut butter with the remaining 1 to 2 tablespoon rice vinegar, 2 teaspoons sugar, 2 tablespoons soy sauce and water until smooth. Put sauce in sealed containers.

Tuck rolls and sauce into a lunch sack with a cold pack and send off to school.

Note: Edible rice papers are sold in Asian food aisle in supermarkets or Asian markets.

Time Saving Tip: Use leftover rice from Chinese takeout to make these quicker. Make them the night before or prep all ingredients including chicken and carrot mixture so in the morning you just need to roll.

Meet me Monday!!!!!

1. What were your school colors?

My school colors were purple and gold. I found it fun that my Mom and Dad and both sets of Grandparents were all Purple and Gold and all North Kitsap Vikings. 
I can't wait for when Hub's and I have a child that will go to North as well. 

2. What's the best compliment you ever received?

Usually, the best compliments I get are the from the people that come to my house. I try to always have my home ready for anyone to stop in and visit. Its a nice feeling another thing I love to have people comment on is the parties that I throw. I love to entertain and I am prideful of the parties I throw. 

3. Do you buy cheap or expensive toilet paper?

One thing I think we all hate is when your finger pokes through the cheap toilet paper..... 

I am an expensive TP girl all. the. way.

My bottom is much too special for that crap =) 

I am a Kleenex Cottonelle girl...and nothing else.

(Hey...that should be the Kleenex saying...dontcha think? "Kleenex baby...and nothing less." Gosh. I'm a marketing genius.)

4. Have you ever had a surprise party thrown for you? Or have you had one for someone else?

No one has done one for me and I have wanted one my entire life. :) 

I threw a party for many of my friends! I want to do one for my Hub's I think he deserves it for being such an amazing hub's even when I get mad at him it never lasts long! :)

So I think we will both have to do a surprise parties...for eachother. I just need to take my control issues and give that part of my life up. 

5. What is one material possession that you "can't live without"?

Wow only one huh?

I would have to say...........................

"I Can't live without"...my laptop.

It has to be my one material possession I can't live without!

To not be able to talk to the outside world. I could still skype, write my blog, get on facebook, and send email's. So I am going with my lap top... heck it holds all my music and all my pictures. IT's a must for my life! <3