Tuesday, June 30, 2015

My Favorite Pasta Recipes

It's no secret that I love pasta! I'm such a carbs girl and could eat a giant bowl of fettuccine {with a glass of red wine, of course!} every day of the week. In fact, when I was a little girl, my mom always asked what I wanted to eat each year for my birthday, and I would always respond with, "Spaghetti." For real. 

So, here are some of my favorite pasta recipes -- and yes, it was hard to narrow them down! 

The Pioneer Woman's Shrimp Pasta in a Foil Package {here} is so easy and yummy! It's a perfect pasta for spring and summer, because it's light and tastes so fresh. 

When Pinterest first came out, this was one of the first recipes I pinned: Jenny Steffens Hobick's Penne Pasta Pie {here}. We absolutely love this -- especially in the fall while watching a football game -- and it makes leftovers for days! 

The Pioneer Woman kills it when it comes to pasta! I love her Pasta with Tomato-Blue Cheese Sauce {here}; it's a total "girl" meal {Brandon's not a huge fan}. This is a great easy weeknight meal! 

And again with good ol' P-Dub! Her Bowtie Lasagna {here} is a great substitute for lasagna in a pinch and comes together very quickly. It's a definite crowd-pleaser. 

If I'm wanting something a little more than just regular spaghetti, Recipe Diaries' Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole {here} is my go-to. This is the only baked spaghetti Brandon will eat, because it calls for far less cream cheese than other recipes. 

Tasty Kitchen's Creamy Caprese Pasta {here} is an easy, light meal that is perfect in the spring and summer. I typically use penne pasta when I make this, and it is so yummy! 

Eat, Live, Run's Cheesy Spinach Stuffed Shells {here} are fantastic! I like to make these when people come over, especially, and I also made them and froze them to have on hand when we brought Walker home from the hospital. They're definitely worth the work, that's for sure! 

By far one of my favorite pasta dishes is Joyfully Healthy Eats' Goat Cheese Spinach Pesto Pasta with Grilled Shrimp {here}. Adding the goat cheese to the homemade pesto just takes this dish over the top! I love to have this with a nice cold glass of Sauvignon Blanc. 


Monday, June 29, 2015


Happy Monday! Here's our little weekend wrap-up for you: 

Again, starting on Thursday since I'm off on Fridays. Love these longer weekends, of which Walker was clearly ready to rock in his sunglasses {that his Daddy got for free at the Byron Nelson Golf Tournament}: 

And we were being super silly Thursday night before Brandon got home:

Friday, Walker and I ran some errands and then I picked up Chick-fil-A for the both of us for lunch. He saw me dipping my nuggets in the sauce and decided he wanted to, too. 

Brandon came home from our business trip and then we went to our neighborhood pool for some swimming! 

My mother-in-law stopped by for a bit to visit, then our friends Brandon and Kimmie came over with pizza to watch the USA Women's soccer game. I was so tired that I fell asleep on the couch with our friends over! Ha!

Saturday, after I decided to touch up our back door {which turned into painting the entire back door and then touching up all of the paint on our baseboards and trim across the entire house}, we took Walker over to my in-law's to go swimming. This kid loves the water!

Walker and my father-in-law posed in their matching fedoras, which I thought was too cute!

And after swimming, Walker passed smooth out in the car. 

Sunday, we took Walker to our local {free!} petting zoo, which he loved. He is all about animals, and so this place was perfect and just his size.

Afterward, we grabbed fro-yo and made a quick trip to the grocery store to pick up a couple of things I forgot on Friday. {Tell me I'm not the only person who does this?!} 

We came home to find that my {brand-new, less-than-a-year-old} oven bit the dust, so Walker and Brandon played outside while I got supper ready, and then took it across the street to our friends Brandon and Kimmie's house to bake. Thankful for good friends who let you use their oven! 

And Walker clearly loved his meal, as evidenced by the sheer fact that it's all over his entire face! 

I hope you have a great week! 

Linking up with Biana and Meghan


Friday, June 26, 2015


Happy Friday, y'all! 

Brandon is coming home this morning from a week-long business trip and we are so excited to see him! I have big plans of all of us going to the pool this afternoon for the second weekend in a row. Love our little neighborhood pool and how family-friendly it is! 

I found this recipe on Pinterest and it's calling my name! Salmon, bacon and guacamole? Sign me up!

Remember how I posted about Walker's "Frocs" {fake Crocs} last week? Okay, well, that's probably about the best $14.99 I have ever spent because the kid loves them. He wore them to school every day this week, and any time I ask him to go grab his shoes out of his cabinet, he picks these out first. They're so versatile, easy-on and easy-off and definitely not nearly as expensive as Crocs. You can purchase them right here on Amazon -- and they're eligible for Prime! 

I picked up this hairspray the other day because the grocery store was out of my usual brand, and I was pretty bummed about it. {I know, ridiculous, right?} Anyway, I actually like this one much better than the one I was using, so I consider that a success! I use hairspray on a daily basis -- especially in the summer when it's humid as all get-out in Texas -- and at this point, I'm practically a hairspray connoisseur; ha! Trust me when I say this is a great one that smells good and holds your style without getting crunchy. 

We finished "Orange is the New Black" Season 3 last weekend, and I actually liked it a lot better than Season 2. Have any of y'all watched it? Now I need recommendations for another show to binge-watch this summer. We have Amazon Fire TV {with our Netflix account streamed to it}, if that helps with your recommendations! 

Linking up with: 

Amy and Karli


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Thoughts for Thursday: Amazon's Wish List

Okay, I have been living under a rock, because just this week I discovered Amazon's Wish List function. Y'all, it has been far too time consuming for me this week than I would like to admit! 

It's such an easier way for me to keep track of gifts I'd like to give Walker {or ideas for other people to get him} than the running list on the "Notes" section of my iPhone. And of course I created a Wish List for me! Ha! 

Here are some things I've added to Walker's Amazon Wish List this week: 

one || two || three || four

five || six || seven || eight

Do any of you mamas have these for your kiddos? I'd love to hear your thoughts!  

Linking up with Annie and Natalie 


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

My Favorite Old Navy Looks

Y'all, Old Navy has been rocking it out of the park lately with cute looks. Normally I'm not an Old Navy fan, but in the last year, they have just been killing it! So much so that Brandon always says, "Another purchase from there?" when he sees the credit card statement or the box on the front porch. Ha! 

This is totally not a sponsored post -- although Old Navy, I'd gladly do that for ya! -- but these are my favorite recent Old Navy looks that may or may not all be in my closet: 

one || two || three 

four || five || six 

seven || eight 

nine || ten 

Have you shopped at Old Navy recently? Buy anything good?


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Taco Tuesday!

I was recently sharing recipes with Liz via my Pinterest, and she walked over to my desk and said, "These are seriously all taco recipes." I died laughing. It's true; we love tacos {and Tex-Mex} in our house! 

So, since it's Tuesday -- Taco Tuesday -- I wanted to share some of our favorite taco and Mexican food recipes with y'all today! 

I have expressed my love of Mix and Match Mama's Chipotle Fish Tacos to y'all before {here}. They're just so dang good! The funny thing is, I completely leave out the chipotle altogether and instead sprinkle with a tiny bit of Chipotle Chile Pepper. I also use a spoon to mash the fish into small pieces, as opposed to one filet. We eat these time after time in our house; so yummy! 

My Finds Online has an awesome staple: Crockpot Salsa Chicken {here}. What I love about this is that it can be used for many different purposes: tacos, burritos, taco salads, quesadillas, etc. It's so versatile, makes and ton and I love the simplicity of it! 

Another favorite in our house are Annie's Easy Chicken Enchiladas {here}! Growing up in Texas, it's hard to find make-at-home enchiladas that just "wow" me, but let me tell y'all, these do! And, just like Annie says, they're easy. What's better than that?

You can never go wrong with Skinnytaste! Her grilled shrimp tostadas {here} are so yummy, light and perfect for summer. They also make awesome leftovers and I can deconstruct them for Walker; he gobbles them up! 

Also another light recipe -- that are very similar to the fish tacos above -- is Real Simple's Shrimp Tacos with Citrus Cabbage Slaw {here}. We use corn tortillas as opposed to flour, and they're fantastic! I like to serve these with refried black beans, and this is another meal that I can deconstruct for Walker and he'll eat it for days. 

Another Skinnytaste favorite are her Salsa Verde Chicken Tostadas {here}. I love that you can throw this in the Crockpot and come home to an almost-done, easy meal...that definitely doesn't taste easy at all! 

A lightened up version of tamales is Cooking Light's Chicken Tamale Casserole {here}. For some reason, I'm more apt to make this in the winter, but any time I make it, Brandon practically downs the entire dish himself. It's so good and so easy. 

And for an even lighter version of tacos to round out this Taco Tuesday, Dashing Dish's Turkey Lettuce Wrap Tacos {here} never, ever disappoint in our household! You basically feel like you're eating the Mexican version of P.F. Chang's Lettuce Wraps! :) 


Monday, June 22, 2015


Happy Monday! I'm linking up with Biana and Meghan today. 

Walker made Brandon two cute little Father's Day gifts at school, so he gave them to him when he got home from work. I ordered some of my aunt's Salted Brown Butter Rice Krispie Treats as a little surprise, and since they came in on Thursday, we gave those to Brandon, too! 

Friday was Donuts for Dads at Walker's school, but since I don't work on Fridays and Walker stays home with me, we had our own version of Donuts for Dads at a little diner near our house! We enjoyed a yummy breakfast with Brandon before he left for work. 

After Walker's morning nap, I took him to our local high school's track to run around and get some energy out. 

And then when Brandon got home for his half-day Friday, we went to our neighborhood pool to swim! It was a perfectly beautiful summer day and Walker had so much fun playing in the kid pool, going down the kid slides and even had a snow cone from the little food stand afterward. 

Walker and Brandon played with blocks in the morning after breakfast while I did a bit of cleaning up around the house. Clearly Walker finds it hilarious to knock over all of the block towers he and Brandon just built! 

Then, we took our little airplane-loving boy to DFW Airport's Founder's Plaza to watch planes take off and land, all while listening to the control tower's communication with the pilots over speakers. And just as we suspected, he loved it! {And we loved that it was a little free fun!} 

Saturday night, my aunt surprised us by telling us she wanted to watch Walker and for us to go out on a date! It was such a nice, sweet "gift" from her for us. We chose to go to this yummy restaurant called Mi Dia From Scratch and had amazing table side guacamole, duck carnitas street tacos and watermelon margaritas. It was all so yummy and we left stuffed! 

We did our usual Sunday morning routine of church, leftovers for lunch and naps! We had such a great day celebrating Brandon and what a wonderful dad he is. Here's a random photo dump from yesterday. 

Walker relaxing and eating Cheerios in our bed while we got ready for church:

Trying to get a decent picture of Brandon and Walker before we left {impossible with this little wiggle-worm!}: 

Walker "helping" me clean: 

And Walker thoroughly enjoying his PB&J. This kid has the best faces:

I hope y'all have a great week! 
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