Thursday, March 19, 2015

Easy Crock Pot Chicken Tacos (Plus 2 Bonus Recipes!)

So one of my go to favorite dinners for a busy day/night is Easy Crock Pot Chicken Tacos! (with two bonus recipes!)

Here's what you're going to need!

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
Your favorite salsa
Homemade Fajitas Seasoning: Mix all the ingredients together
(I triple this recipe because we use it all the time)
     1 1/2 tsp ground cumin 
     1/2 tsp dried oregano 
     1/4 tsp salt
     1/4 tsp ground red pepper 
     1/4 tsp ground black pepper
     1/8 tsp garlic powder
     1/8 tsp onion powder
     (optional a little cayenne pepper for a kick)

Lime Rice (Toss in some chopped cilantro and it's just like the rice at Chipotle!)
     1 cup brown basmati rice
     2 limes 
     1 tbl butter
     2 c water
     (optional) handful chopped cilantro 

Toppings: Pick and Choose your favorites or lay them all out for a taco bar!
     Black beans

First up the Chicken! Grab your chicken, fajita seasoning, and salsa.

Place your chicken in the crock pot. Generously sprinkle your homemade fajita seasoning on top.

Dump most of your salsa on top of the chicken.

Place your crock pot on low and put on the top. Typically I use frozen chicken breasts but since I just picked up the chicken at the store that morning I had not portioned or froze them yet. I let mine cook on low all day. In a pinch turn it on high and give it a few hours and you'll have a quick dinner ready!

Once your chicken is thoroughly cooked (165 degrees!) take a fork and shred your chicken in the pot.

How good does this look already!

Bonus recipe Lime Rice! Start by putting a tablespoon of butter in to a hot pot with the juice from one lime. 

Once the lime butter is all melted and a little bubbly take your cup of basmati rice and dump it in and sauté it for about a minute.

Then add your two cups of water, bring the water to a boil, put the lid on a reduce heat and simmer for 30 min.

Once all the liquid is gone add the juice from your second lime. (You can also add chopped cilantro to make it like the rice at Chipotle if you like...our kids are at the stage where they won't eat food with green stuff in it. So we add it to our individual tacos.)

We prefer to eat Chicken Tacos in bowls. You can totally make this into a giant burrito if you prefer. To start layer a heap of your Lime Rice on the bottom.

Next I like to pile on some black beans.

Then go crazy with the chicken....go on put a little know you want to.

Diced avocado...yes please!

And why not add a little salsa to the top! I'm starving!

This is one of our favorite dinners. The littles thoroughly enjoy it too. They love to customize their own bowls too. And the best part is you can make this for just a few people with leftovers or throw in a couple more chicken breasts and serve a crowd....can you say TACO BAR!!!! You can even throw this over some chips and make nachos!

What's your favorite taco toppings?

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Building Kids Stools

So 2 weeks ago I posted about Building a Kids Table. Once you have a table you have to have a place to I right? The plans are from Ana White but I modified the plans to make stools instead since our kids are quite crazy (we have one small wooden chair that was given to us and it ends up toppled over due to kids sitting on the back.)

So here's how it went down. I turned the space heater on and got to measuring. 

I cut all my wood to size according to the plans except for the back legs. I cut them to the same size as the front legs.

Make sure you're wearing your protective ear and eyewear. 

I then used my Kreg Jig to drill my pocket holes for the aprons to makes the base of the stool.

After the pocket holes were added, I assembled the base of the stool making sure that everything was square as I worked. Then using the pocket holes I screwed the legs onto the base.

That's a pretty good looking stool so far. 

Then I carefully measured in-between the legs to add the supports.

Added a few quick pocket holes and forced it into the gap.

Next up was adding the slats to the top.

Using my counter sink drill bit I drilled both ends of every slat.

Secure the slats onto the base of the stool with screws.

The last step is to sand everything down as smooth as you can. It's bad enough the kids are going to flip them over pretending they are mountains but theres no need for them to get splinters too.

There you have it. A nice little stool for you Kids Table!

Now all that is left is to fill the holes with wood glue give those a brief sanding and then I still have to choose a color for both the stools as well as the table.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Building a Kids Table

So I'm slightly obsessed with Ana White's website thanks to my friend Jen over at The House of Wood. Ana provides plans to build all sorts of things and they are a much better for my budget than purchasing furniture from a high end store. (In our house we are budgeting fools. We've been following Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University since we got engaged.) Strolling into Pottery Barn or Restoration Hardware and purchasing what we want not is not an option. But planning and budgeting to build things....we do that very well. 

Here we go! After printing the plans and a quick run to Home Depot for the lumber, I got the heater running in the garage  (it's like 30 degrees out....and this FL girl isn't a fan of cold weather) and pulled out all the tools for the job.

First things first. I had to get all the measurements marked before I could cut all the wood down to size.

Please make sure you wear the appropriate eye and ear protection when working with power tools! (I tend to listen to 90's alternative music...which is what was in my portable cd player back in the day during training sessions for volleyball, weightlifting, and gets me pumped up to do work.)

Next I added pocket holes to all the wood using my Kreg Jig. (this is an amazing little tool to have)

Nothing better than a hubby who grabs you some coffee when you're half way through building. 

Look at all those pocket holes!

Here's where it gets fun. The assembly! First up putting the table top together.

Then screwing the aprons to the table legs.

Then it was time to put all the legs together.

Next up the table top.

This was a quick and easy build. With a quick stop to make dinner and eat with my family it took me just a few hours to get it done.

How stinking cute is this little table! It's perfect for the kids.

For now I'm leaving it in it's natural color because we have big plans for our bonus room (the playground as the kids call it) this year. Since we homeschool the kids we have a lot of work to do to make it a more functional space and this table is where the kids will be doing their schoolwork everyday. Bit by bit we'll have the room more functional. On a later post I'll show you the stools I made to go with the table. 

What are you favorite colors for a kids playroom?