Foodie Friday {Americano Chicken Pockets}…

I wanted to call them Homemade Hot Pockets — Raymond poo poo’d that recipe name. 😉

Americano Chicken Pockets Recipe | Pure & Simple

We made this awesome recipe earlier in the week and ate on it for several days.  My favorite type of dish is one that allows us to enjoy a few dinners and a lunch.

I also made a crockpot pot roast.  Definitely not as good as I had hoped.  I will keep tweaking that recipe. 🙂

Americano Chicken Pockets | Pure & Simple

In the morning you will:

Step 1: Break out the trusty Crockpot.

Spray the Crockpot with non-stick spray.  Add 3 frozen chicken breasts, 1 TSBP lemon-pepper seasoning, and 1/4 cup chicken broth.  Let the chicken slowly cook for 5-6 hours.

American Chicken Pockets Bread | Pure & Simple

These are my favorite rolls!

 

Step 2:  Lay out your dinner rolls so they can thaw during the day.  Our bag of yeast exploded (oops), so I would recommend laying on a cookie sheet and covering with a damp tea towel.

Ingredients Chopped | Pure & Simple

In the evening:

Step 3: Time to make dinner!   Chop up one onion, 4 oz of mushrooms, 2 roasted sweet red peppers, 2 garlic cloves, and the cooked chicken.

Melt 1 TSP butter and saute onions, mushrooms, and garlic.  Once those are tender, add the roasted peppers, chicken, and 2 TBSP honey mustard dressing, 1/4 TSP each S&P, lemon pepper seasoning, and 1/2 TSP italian seasonings.  Heat through and remove to a bowl.

Add 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese and stir to combine.

Step 4:  Roll out each dinner roll and fill with chicken mixture.  Since our bag of rolls turned into a bag of yeasty dough — we made larger than life hot pockets.  The size is up to you.  I would recommend smaller “rounds” or “pockets” if you have kids.

Press the dough together to form a seal.  You can always press with a fork (similar to making an apple turnover).

Americano Chicken Pockets  Ready for the oven | Pure & Simple

Step 5: Brush tops with melted butter, sprinkle with S&P and bake at 350º for 18 minutes or until golden brown.

Now for the recipe:

AMERICANO CHICKEN POCKETS

  • 3 chicken breasts, frozen
  • 1 TBSP lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth

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  • 1 TSP butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 oz mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 roasted sweet red peppers, chopped
  • 2 TBSP honey mustard
  • 1/4 TSP each S&P
  • 1/4 TSP lemon pepper
  • 1/2 TSP italian seasoning
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 24 frozen dinner rolls, thawed
  • 1 TSP butter, melted
  1. In the morning, spray the Crockpot with non-stick spray.  Add chicken, lemon pepper seasoning, and chicken broth.
  2. Cook on low for 5-6 hours.
  3. Also in the morning, lay out the dinner rolls to thaw.
  4. In a large skillet, saute onion and mushrooms in butter until tender.
  5. Add garlic and cook 1 minute longer.
  6. Add the chicken, peppers, honey mustard and seasonings; heat through.
  7. Remove from heat to a mixing bowl.
  8. Add cheese.
  9. Flatten each dinner roll into a 5″ circle.
  10. Place 1 TBSP (give or take) of the chicken mixture in the center of the circle.
  11. Brush edges with water and press to create a seal.
  12. Repeat with remaining bread and chicken.
  13. Place on a greased baking sheet, brush tops with melted butter.
  14. Bake at 350º for 18-22 minutes until golden brown.
  15. Cut in half to serve.

Serve with tomato soup (we prefer Trader Joe’s Organize Tomato & Roasted Red Pepper Soup), and a spinach side salad.  Raymond is still talking about this dinner and we had it on Tuesday! 😉

Enjoy!  Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

 

Monthly Goals {March Check-In}…

Another month in the books … almost!  I think we are all SO ready for spring to arrive and stay that it is making us a little crazy and impatient.  Waking up to 30º weather is less than ideal when the calendar says March 28th. 🙂

Staying true to form for my third month, I’m checking in on my March goals.

My January recap can be read here.  My February recap can be read here.

March Resolutions

I’m consistently focused (and doing well I might add) on my January goals.  Drinking more water, eating more fruits and veggies, and not skipping meals.  All good.

I worked out a total of 12 days (that includes this coming Saturday’s workout which I hope to squeeze in before more thrifting with Cheryl). 🙂

I’m consistently waking up at 7:15am — I plan to move that back to 7am for the month of April.  Life is a marathon not a sprint.  I’m making progress even if it may be slow. 😉

I finished reading Getting Things Done and Rhinoceros Success.  I LOVED Rhinoceros Success and highly recommend the easy and short read to anyone.

I am now slightly obsessed with rhinos. 😉

I finished my book review of Rich Dad, Poor Dad.  I have 3 chapters left in Life on the Wire before that book review is complete.

I did pretty well this month!  I had to focus and force myself to make time for reading and typing up the book reviews.  I tend to do this in the early mornings before I start my day, before I check email, before anything.  If I put it off, then it won’t happen.

Come back next week for my April goals! 🙂

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

Guest Blog Roundup…

Is it Wednesday already?  Where has the week gone?!  I’ve been a little quiet this week as I’m spending some time regrouping and decluttering.  Yes, even the organizer needs to declutter. 😉

I wanted to round up a few guest blogs in case time is on your side and you wanted to check them out:

{1} Jessica, from Savvy Southern Parent, asked if I would guest post about organizing.  I wrote so much she broke it up into two segments! 🙂  I guess I can talk for days about organizing.

Part 1: How to Get Organized When You Are Overwhelmed and Feel Defeated By The Piles

Part 2: How To Get Organized When You Are Overwhelmed

{2} I’m blogging over at SouthPark Magazine this week about Organizing Your Long-Term Storage Areas

Organize Your Long-Term Storage

{3} I’m sharing some organizing “tools” to organize your closet over at The Charlotte Moms.

Tools To Organize Your Closet

{4} I asked my dear friend, Cheryl Luckett of Dwell by Cheryl, for some decorating tips regarding my bathroom.  She wrote an awesome post complete with pictures and suggestions.  Slightly embarrassed that it is so boring and bland. 🙂

Decor Tips For An Apartment Bathroom

You might see a few more cameos on her blog here and here.

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While you are there be sure to leave some blog loving.  All bloggers love comments!  {really we do} 😉

Lastly — my new blog and IG friend Mari from Crab+Fish wrote this awesome post about thrifting.  If thrifting is something you enjoy, then hop on over and check it out. 🙂

And don’t forget — if you are on IG, feel free to follow me.  Besides posting drool worthy thrift finds, I like to take snapshots of my day to share with all of IG. 😉  Sounds fun, right?

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

Foodie Friday {Crock Pot Lemon Italian Chicken Recipe}…

Happy happy Friday once again! 🙂  What a nice week — it was rather long but rather short. I like confusing everyone. 😉

I managed to get a few things accomplished .. and managed to have a mini-meltdown.  I proclaimed that I needed a vacation several times to Raymond on Monday.  I may not have said vacay in the works, but I instantly felt better.  Perhaps just declaring I need a break helped my brain breathe a little easier. 🙂

We cooked quite a lot this week!  My favorite was the Crock Pot Chicken Taco Salad and Meatballs with Mashed Potatoes. 🙂 Yum to the tum!

Tonight I’m making this easy recipe.  I must admit .. this is my first time making it. I will come back and let you know if it is delicious. 🙂

Crockpot Lemon Italian Chicken Recipe | Pure & Simple

PS — have I expressed my love for the ole Crock Pot recently!  Super easy and simple.  *heart* 😉

Crock Pot Lemon Italian Chicken Step 1

Spray Crock Pot with non-stick spray.

Place 1.5 TBSP butter in the bottom.

Top with 3 frozen chicken breasts.

Crock Pot Lemon Italian Chicken Step 2

Sprinkle Italian Dressing Mix, pepper, dried oregano, and dried parsley on top.

Crock Pot Lemon Chicken Step 3

Add juice of one lemon. Place juiced lemon halves around chicken.

Crock Pot Lemon Italian Chicken Step 4

Cover.  Cook on low for 4-5 hours.

And for the recipe:

CROCK POT LEMON ITALIAN CHICKEN

  • 3 chicken breasts (frozen)
  • 1.5 TBSP butter
  • 1 Packet Good Seasons Italian Dressing Mix
  • 1/4 TSP pepper, dried oregano, dried parsley
  • Juice of one lemon (reserve peel)
  1. Spray Crock Pot with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Place butter in bottom of Crock Pot.
  3. Top butter with chicken.
  4. Sprinkle chicken with seasonings (italian dressing mix, pepper, oregano, parsley).
  5. Add lemon juice.
  6. Place lemon halves around chicken.
  7. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours.

I plan to serve with Pioneer Woman’s Smashed Potatoes and a spinach, avocado side salad. 🙂

What have you made this week that is delish? 🙂

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

 

Buying Organizing Supplies from HomeGoods…

I have been in a HomeGoods kind of mood for the past few weeks.  I love thrifting and second hand shopping, but there is something magnificent about being around new stuff.

I snapped some pictures for inspiration when it comes to buying organizing supplies.  Sorted by room and function. 🙂

 

ENTRYWAY

HomeGoods Entryway Table | Pure & Simple

 

Great shape (not too big and not too small).  I love all the drawers.  Perfect for those odds and ends that we tend to need when heading out the door.

HomeGoods Entryway Table | Pure & Simple

 

Another great option for the entryway.  Surface area? Check!  Storage options? Check!  Baskets would be functional on the lower shelf.

BATHROOM

HomeGoods Bathroom Storage | Pure & Simple

I love this cabinet!  Functional and stylish!  Overflow beauty product storage could go in here along with towels.

KID’S ROOMS

HomeGoods Truck Book Ends | Pure & Simple

 

Kids love books and little boys love trucks.  This truck bookend set would look great on a bookshelf corralling those unruly books.

HomeGoods DIY Knock Off | Pure & Simple

 

Easy enough to recreate if you were looking for a specific color and design.  Adorable for a kid’s room to hold their works of art.

HomeGoods Kids Organizer | Pure & Simple

 

This would be adorable in a little girl’s bathroom for hair bows  bracelets, mini purses.  I would spray paint it another color.

MAIL/HOME OFFICE

HomeGoods Mail Sorter | Pure & Simple

 

Easy way to use up wall space for a functional need.  Store mail, magazines, catalogs in this holder.  It is wide enough to hold all the above.  When full, dump and sort.

HomeGoods Crate | Pure & Simple

 

This would be cute if you had several family members.  Each square could be their “inbox”.  Like a PO Box. 🙂

This big guy came home with me:

Ceramic Owl | Pure & Simple

What do you think?  Does he fit right in? I’m still working on the other decor options. 🙂

Pure & Simple Home Office

And don’t forget to have a little fun while shopping for organizing supplies! 😉

Jennifer at HomeGoods | Pure & Simple

Feel free to check out my Facebook album where I upload more ideas and pictures from shopping and thrifting trips. 🙂

So what do you think?  Helpful?  Do you love HomeGoods?  

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

How To Navigate An Estate Sale…

I had a pretty amazing weekend — my first weekend “off” in months! 🙂  Saturday was all about thrifting, Sunday was all about DIY.

I attended by first estate sale on Saturday with Dwell by Cheryl.  Read her post about the sale here.

I love these silver pieces!  And those placemats?!

I love these silver pieces! And those placemats?!

 

You don't see pieces like this at Goodwill. ;)

You don’t see pieces like this at Goodwill. 😉

I tend to be a nervous type when it comes to something I have never experienced.  I have been dying to go to an estate sale for over a year.  Either I wasn’t too convincing in my asking of friends, or I was just too scared to go by myself.

Caring Transitions was hosting an estate sale in Lake Norman.  That is in my backyard and decided I was going.  I asked Cheryl if she was interested and boy am I glad she said yes! Her decor eye was necessary for me.  You see I need to update our apartment with some decor love.  I’m functional not fancy so I have no idea what I am doing here.

Estate Sale | Kitchen Items for Sale

Back to the sale … I digress. 🙂

Mari over at Crab+Fish gave me some great advice regarding the sale:

  • Take some bags so you can cart your finds around
  • Be sure to negotiate
  • The more you are buying the better your negotiating power
  • Take cash (if a smaller sale)
  • Credit cards are accepted (usually) if ran by a company

BTW – if you don’t already, then I highly recommend following both Dwell by Cheryl and Meandering Mari on Instagram! 🙂

Love this picture!  Needs a mat and better frame.

Love this picture! Needs a mat and better frame.

We arrived at the sale and the house was rather packed.  Be prepared to be overly stimulated.  Between the items laying around on ALL surfaces and navigating through the house with all the people, I was a bit overwhelmed.

Cheryl was digging through some piles. :)  That print came home with me btw. ;)

Cheryl was digging through some piles. 🙂
That print came home with me btw. 😉

I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, but had a fabulous time imagining what “grandmaw” did in the house.  I guess that is part of the experience of buying up someone’s house basically.  I would say “Grandmaw liked scarves!” or “Grandmaw picked an interesting wallpaper”.  I had a good time. 😉

I loved these pictures!  Must do project?

I loved these pictures! Must do project?

If you are in the market for something particular, then I would recommend going the first day.  We went on the second day and everything was half off.

So what did I come home with and how much did I spend?  I spent $31 and got all this plus some twig/branch stuff:

Estate Sale finds

The books are either for my coffee table or for my gallery wall.  I like “stuff” on the wall and adding pictures from books is a great way to get said stuff on said wall.

Estate Sale Finds | Picture Frames

Estate Sale Finds | Picture Books

Estate Sale Project | Frames plus Picture Book

The frames were $2.50 each.  The Seashell book was $1.  This went in my bathroom to kick start my bathroom decorating project! 🙂  And yes I notice it is upside down, some yahoo pointed that out on IG.  😛

After looking through my pictures and knowing that everything was half off — I’m kicking myself for not buying more.  I guess we should ask first about any sales. 🙂

I started the day looking like this:

Jennifer | Estate Sale Day

And ended the day like this:

Jennifer sick at end of estate sale

I clearly cannot hang with Cheryl.  Must.Bring.More.Snacks!  We thrifted several other places .. stay tuned. 🙂

To learn more about estate sales in your area, sign up at EstateSales.net.

I might try another sale this weekend. 🙂  Have you been to an estate sale? Got any recommendations?

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

 

Foodie Friday {Low Fat Ranch Dressing Recipe}…

Are you really bad at asking for help?

I am.  As in, really bad at it.  I either don’t do it and get mad when nothing is done … or demand instead of ask and then nothing gets done.

This has been one of those weeks for me where I’m trying to catch my breath.  I don’t like to have balls drop.  I think I can do it all.

I’ve been pretty busy the past 3 weeks and this week it started catching up to me.  I need to get better at asking for help with groceries, dishes, cooking, and the like.

All that to say … I didn’t cook much this week.  I cooked some but nothing fabulous.

I did manage to find this awesome recipe on Pinterest and decided to modify. 🙂   Super easy and super delicious! 🙂

Simple ingredient list

Simple ingredient list

Low Fat Ranch Dressing Recipe | Pure & Simple

LOW FAT RANCH DRESSING

  • 1 Packet of Ranch Dressing (dry mix)
  • 1 Cup Greek Yogurt (2%)
  • 3/4 Cup Skim Milk (less if you prefer thick ranch)
  • 1/8 TSP S&P, Dill (dried is fine)

Add all of the ingredients to a bowl and whisk together.  Refrigerate and serve.  It is tangy enough to remind me of Ranch.  It isn’t quite as good as restaurant dressing, which keeps me from eating too much.  I could swim in the ranch from Texas Roadhouse.  Seriously.

Don’t forget about my homemade italian dressing recipe! 🙂

What have you made this week?

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

{Guest Post} How To Organize Your Bathroom…

I’m guest blogging over at SouthPark magazine.  I’m in the mood to redo my bathroom which inspired my post:  Bathroom Organizing with Style & Function.

Be sure to drop by their website to read the full post. 🙂

I also ran across this great story on Houzz yesterday:  Decluttering — How to get the help you need.  I thought it might be of interest if time is on your side. 😉

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

IKEA BYOF Event Recap {Charlotte, NC}…

Last Saturday, IKEA stores nationwide held their BYOF (Bring Your Own Friend) event.  It was a code red weekend.

Code red: Over 8,000 visitors were expected to visit the store in one day

I was asked to give two organizing presentations throughout the day.  Woo hoo!

Love the banner.  I spy... :)

Love the banner. I spy… 🙂

Time to dress the part.  Makeup, hair, the works! 🙂

Getting ready for my big day!

Getting ready for my big day!

I arrived and the parking lot was packed!

Packed house for the BYOF event!

Packed house for the BYOF event!

My parents were inside shopping so I met up with them an hour and half before my first presentation.  The Charlotte store recently made some changes to their Marketplace.  All renovations were complete and their Spring line was front and center.  Thanks IKEA for inspiring me to redo my entire apartment!  😉

I love these colors!  And that rug?!

I love these colors! And that rug?!

I headed upstairs to get my organizing on.  The topics were home office and closet organizing.  I prefer to have an interactive discussion so I made sure to ask questions like, “What is your biggest challenge when it comes to closet organizing?”  I love hearing the responses, but most importantly, I want to make sure the audience is getting something out of my presentation.

Lights, camera, ACTION!

Lights, camera, ACTION!

Apparently I like to move around and make funny faces! ;)

Apparently I like to move around and make funny faces! 😉

"Excuse me, could you speak up?"

“Excuse me, could you speak up?”

Suggestions on home office organizing:

  • Set up storage and use wall space.
  • You need to store all sorts of items in a home office from paper to pens to paper clips.  Have storage options available so it is not out and in the way.
  • Use cork boards to keep track of invitations, bills to be paid, and store coupons.

Suggestions on closet organizing:

  • Display it and you will wear it.
  • Use consistent hangers to cut down on the visual clutter.
  • Insert pool noodles (aka floats) into boots to keep them upright.

There were some other suggestions but those were the most talked about. 🙂

And look who came to see me…

Why yes that is Dwell by Cheryl! :)

Why yes that is Dwell by Cheryl! 🙂

Yes that is a thrift store dress.  Banana Republic — from Goodwill — $5. 😉

It was an awesome day filled with great ideas and conversations.  Who is ready for another Pure & Simple Organizing & IKEA Charlotte session? 🙂

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature

5 Questions for 1 Blogger…

Yesterday I published this ginormous post centered around 5 questions to 8 bloggers.  Since the post was so long, I decided to round it out today.

First and foremost, I must give major props to my intern Sarah for coordinating the project. I gave her a project outline with a list of contacts … she took the ball and ran with it.  And boy did she run!  Sarah, thank you!  You did an amazing job! 🙂 #internsrock 😉

The idea was inspired by this post over at Emily A. Clark’s blog.   I loved the idea and wanted to do something similar with a local vibe.  I gave Sarah a list of 6 local bloggers to reach out to.  Some replied and some didn’t.  We expanded the list to more and I even through in Brittany from Pretty Handy Girl.  She is pretty “major” (in Rachel Zoe terms 😉 ) on my list of bloggers so I thought why not!  Sarah surprised me with Young House Love. (totally MAJOR)

Sarah actually turned me on to Young House Love during her interview.  She has been following them for years.  I just started and cannot get enough.  They were recently in Charlotte for a book signing.  I was sick but considered sneaking around the city in hopes of finding them … pure paparazzi style!  Sarah went to the book signing and asked Sherry if she would participate.  She was more than happy to.  (Oh.Em.Gee!!) 

Sarah started compiling answers and creating graphics for the post.  More answers started rolling in.  Whoops — we asked too many.  We overbooked the plane.  Instead of asking someone to take another flight, we included them all!  I thought it turned out great!  🙂

I had so much fun reading the replies from the other bloggers that I wanted to be included too.  Nobody puts Baby in the corner.  (Dirty Dancing, anyone?)  

How do you keep coming up

My blog is more lifestyle centered than anything else.  I like to keep my focus broad.  I love blogging about anything and everything.  Therefore, blog topics come up at random.

I do find inspiration in magazine articles, other bloggers, Facebook questions/comments, organizing projects that I complete with clients, and conversations that start like this “That would make a great blog topic!”.

I keep everything organized in my Blog Planner.  One of these days I will post it for all to see.  In the meantime, I’m still tweaking and perfecting.  😉

What is the best thing

Being able to release some creative juices.  I’m Type A all the way and not that creative.  When I can add some creative touches in my life either through writing or DIYing, then I take it! 🙂 I love writing guest posts about organizing for other websites but my writing is more generic and less Jennifer.  It is their site after all  not mine.  But on this one … anything goes! 🙂

The second best part is making new friends both in Charlotte and nationwide.  This was a big surprise bonus for me.  🙂

What blogs or bloggers

  • IHeart Organizing (http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/)
    • Jen Jones is crushing it.  I love how she marries function with style.  She is part decorator and part organizer.
    • Her pictures are awesome too!
  • Young House Love (http://www.younghouselove.com/)
    • They are hilarious!  It is hard to put in words why I like them so much, but I think it is because what you see is what you get.  You feel like they are your friends.
    • Their pictures are equally awesome.
    • Their projects look super easy and totally do-able.
    • They rock at using Instagram!
  • Perfectly Imperfect (http://www.perfectlyimperfectblog.com/)
    • Some of the best writing I have come across.
    • Short, sweet, to the point, and eloquent!
    • Love her pictures too — and her style!  Shabby Chic!
  • Skinny Runner (http://skinnyrunner.com/)
    • This girl cracks me up!
    • If I could only be that funny!

This is a very short list — there are so many others that I follow and admire!

What are you fave and least fave

Favorite:  When I find out that someone reads my blog.  There is nothing better.  🙂

Least favorite:  Not being able to blog as much as I want.  My first priority is always organizing and working with my clients.  When that part of my life is busy, then other things must wait.  Blogging is one of them.

How do you keep up

I’m with Cheryl in that I don’t have a ton of emails or comments on the blog at this point.  It is manageable in it’s current form.  I do have a hard time keeping up with all the social media.  I do a pretty good job at Instagram and Facebook.  Bad job at Twitter.  It is just so fast!

Bonus Question

All of the Goodwill stores!  Restaurants, restaurants, restaurants.  The food here is out of this world!

Davidson and Dilworth are my favorite neighborhoods.

IKEA is my favorite store … alongside The Container Store and Home Goods. 🙂

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I hope you enjoyed! 🙂 Thank you for reading and thank you to everyone who participated!

Until next time…

Jennifer Signature