My 3 Monsters

Recent Posts

1.13.2017

Super Snack Showdown Football Party

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TheNewFanFavorites #CollectiveBias

Hi guys! Tis the season for football, amiright?!  Do y’all have football-crazed family members getting super excited as the season draws to a close, whether their team is still “in it” or not?  Does every conversation in your house seen to turn into a debate about player stats and team records? Are you finding your normally cozy and quiet family room turn into a man cave every Sunday afternoon?  Please say it’s not just me!  We usually end up going to watch the Big Game at a friend’s house, but I know my husband has always wanted to take a turn hosting to party at our house.  Secretly, so have I.  Today I’m sharing some delicious dips and dippers to make your Big Game party a Super Snack Showdown.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Sweet vs. Spicy.  Hot vs. Cool.  Savory vs. Sweet.  Which one will be the MVP of the buffet table?  It’s time to find out!  I’m a sucker for a good dip, so this buffet table is like my dream come true.  Four of my absolute favorite dips along with all the yummiest dippers – ,Snyder’s of Hanover® Pretzels, Snack Factory® Pretzel Crips®,  Late July® Tortilla Chips, and a variety of crunchy Cape Cod® and Kettle Brand® Potato Chips. 

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Bonus:  a sweet nutty Pop Secret® Popcorn treat with Emerald® Nuts  to top it all off!  I’ll share all my recipes below. You could ask your guests to bring their favorite football snacking food or dippers as well for even more variety.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
This was the “Before” photo. My guys would have been fine if we had just left it at that, but they were OK with me decorating as long as it was not “too cute” or “over the top” – their words.  I feel like we found a happy medium with this stadium-inspired spread.  I found an artificial turf rug online for about $10 and decided it would make the perfect table cover.   

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Then I added a couple of risers made from 1x6 pine boards and molding pieces to give the feeling of bleachers.  This gave me some different levels for food display and made it all look a little more interesting!

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
To really define the area, I hung a sheet of black butcher paper on the wall behind the table and drew a football play diagram on it in chalk.  I wanted to add some color so I chose bright primary colors and made tissue paper tassels to hang along the wall as well.  They look a little bit like pom-poms which is a fun touch.  You could use your favorite team’s colors or even the colors of the two opposing teams on opposite sides of the table.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Instead of plates, I decided to use cardboard take-out boxes as trays. I simply cut off the top flaps since we did not need them to close.  They reminded me of the way food is packaged in a stadium.  I figured our guests could fill up their tray with chips and dips, grab a bottle of rootbeer and take it with them back to the living room to eat.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Since no one wants to be away from the game for too long, I pre-portioned all the dippers into small bags and cups to make them easy to grab-and-go.  The dips are easily spooned into small cups and placed into the trays along with the dippers.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
I also placed a tray of extra dippers on the coffee table so guests could refill without getting up.  You know how annoying it is when you need just one more pretzel to finish your dip. Problem solved!

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
I used the pennants I shared yesterday to label the dips.  Just tape the pennant flag to a straw or bamboo skewer and pop it right into the bowl.  I tried to have a good variety of hot and cold, meat and veggie, etc. – SPICY Chorizo Queso, SWEET Salsa Verde, HOT Parmesan Artichoke Dip, and COOL Shrimp Dip.  I was hoping there would be something everyone would enjoy! You could even throw in a veggie tray with some dill dip.  My guys tend to like the “heartier” choices.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
I also felt like we needed a sweet treat for dessert, so I made a batch of toffee popcorn, drizzled with melted white chocolate and sprinkled with Cocoa Roast Almonds, which look like tiny little footballs. My oldest son could not get enough of it!! 

I wanted a wide variety of yummy, high-quality dippers for my dips.  I found them all at my local grocery store – some in the “natural” section and some in the snack aisle.

All you have left to do is make the food, so let’s get cookin’, Good Lookin’!
___________________________________________________

Nutty Toffee Popcorn 


3 bags Pop Secret Home Style popcorn, popped
1/2 C. butter
1/2 C. light corn syrup
1 C. brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 bag white chocolate chips
1 bag Emerald Cocoa Roast Almonds

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
1. Pop the popcorn and remove all unpopped kernels.  Place in a large bowl.  Heat butter, corn syrup, and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.  

2. Stir mixture constantly until boiling.

3. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda.  This will make the mixture "frothy" and help it to coat the popcorn more easily.

4. Pour hot toffee mixture over popcorn and stir to coat evenly.  Spread popcorn onto two baking sheets and bake at 250 degrees for 20 minutes, stirring midway.  Remove from oven and spread out on parchment paper to cool.  

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
5. Melt white chocolate chips in a bowl in the microwave.  Drizzle half of the white chocolate over popcorn.  Sprinkle almonds on top of popcorn and white chocolate, then drizzle again with remaining melted white chocolate.  Allow to cool until white chocolate hardens again.  Break into small clumps and serve.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com

___________________________________________________

Sweet Salsa Verde


1 large can tomatillos (approx. 16 small tomatillos) drained
1 jalapeno, diced
1/2 bunch cilantro
1/2 C. sugar

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor.

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
2. Blend until smooth and serve with corn tortilla chips. 

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com

 ________________________________

Hot Parmesan Artichoke Dip


Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com

________________________________

Cool Shrimp Dip


Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
   __________________________________________

Spicy Chorizo Queso


1 lb. loaf of good soft melting cheese, cubed
1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles
1/2 lb. chorizo

In a microwavable bowl, combine cubed cheese and tomatoes with green chiles.  Microwave on HIGH in 45 second increments, stirring in between, until cheese is melted.  Place in a small crock pot on warm setting to keep warm.  

Cook chorizo in a frying pan until cooked through.  Stir into melted cheese and tomato mixture and serve for a spicy twist on the classic queso. 

Host a Super Snack Showdown at your party for the Big Game with these delicious recipes and decorating ideas from my3monsters.com
 ______________________________________

Do you usually host the big party or do you watch at a friend's house?  Either way, these recipes are sure to be crowd-pleasers no mater what the final score of the game is.   

Enjoy the end of the football season, friends!!  

Amy


1.12.2017

Vintage Style Pennant Flags with free SVG Cut File

Hi guys!  Today I wanted to share a really simple and fun craft idea with y’all.  This seems to be the season of football.  All the Christmas trees and candy canes of last month have been replaced with Astroturf and team mascots.  I created a fun paper pennant pattern you could use to make a vintage-style sporty bunting or buffet labels for your next football or sports themed party.

Create these Vintage -Style Pennant Flags from my3monsters.com out of decorative paper to add a little style to your next tailgate ot sports themed party!
I bought a bunch of cardstock and patterned papers in a variety of bright colors.  You could use your favorite team colors or the colors of the opposing teams if you are making it for a Super Bowl party.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/x8n1mlm2oizfzsv/Pennant%20template%20front%20piece.studio3?dl=0
I used my Silhouette to cut the pieces out to save some time, but you could cut them by hand if you don’t have a cutting machine.  Glue the decorative paper pieces on top of the solid cardstock pieces to form each individual pennant. 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/x8n1mlm2oizfzsv/Pennant%20template%20front%20piece.studio3?dl=0
Use a white gel pen or Sharpie to write anything you want onto the flag.  I chose to attach my flags to paper straws with tape to use as buffet markers – you’ll see how I used them in a fun post later this week! Here’s a sneak peek:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/x8n1mlm2oizfzsv/Pennant%20template%20front%20piece.studio3?dl=0
You could also attach them to a string to make a bunting and hang it up.  

Download the pdf pattern here to cut pennants by hand.

Have fun celebrating your team this season, friends!

Amy


#ad How to WIN on Game Day with Tyson® Chicken

This post is written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. All opinions are entirely my own. This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PlayoffPicks #CollectiveBias

Be the "Hostess with the Mostest" when you serve these delicious Garlic Parmesan and Sweet & Spicy Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips at your Playoff party!  You can sit and enjoy the game instead of slaving in the kitchen, and no one needs to know how easy they were to make.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Hi guys!  With the holidays now behind us and a brand new year stretching out ahead, it's time to start thinking about what to serve your friends and family while they watch the Big Game this year!  I've got you covered with a couple of SUPER simple recipes for THE MOST delicious Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips on the planet.  Seriously, these Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips taste so good your friends will wonder where you ordered them from!  The best part is, you can set the whole spread up ahead of time, which means you can actually sit and enjoy the game, too.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

I'll admit, I'm a little bit picky when it comes to football party food.  I love the chicken wing joints offer, but I prefer Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips because they're easier, and wayyy less messy, to eat.  That's why I have come up with a way to recreate my favorite wing flavors at home!  I picked up a couple of bags of Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips (3.5 lbs) and a bag of Tyson® Boneless Wyngz (3 lbs) Honey BBQ flavor last time I was at Sam's Club so I would have enough delicious chicken to feed an army of hungry football fans. Visit Ibotta to earn yourself a little cash as well.  Winning!!

My favorite wing flavors are Garlic Parmesan, Sweet & Spicy (a sweeter version of traditional Buffalo wings) and Honey BBQ. Since Tyson® Honey BBQ flavored Boneless Wyngz are already perfection, there was no need to reinvent the wheel there -- just heat and serve!  I came up with the perfect way to add Garlic Parmesan and Sweet & Spicy flavors to the Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips by dipping them in delicious glazes after they come out of the oven.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

They are the perfect centerpiece for a fun football food buffet all decked out in your favorite team colors. Our favorite team barely made the playoffs this year, but we didn't hesitate to show our spirit and cheer them on in style!!

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Start with a simple backdrop.  I didn't have a neutral enough area in my dining room so I just hung loosely draped white plastic table cloths on the wall to define the serving area.  Then I added a few paper lanterns and tissue paper pom-poms in a mix of fun patterns and colors.  (Party hack: I used paper napkins to create the solid blue and the polka dot pom-poms!)  In case anyone was confused about what we wanted the result of the game to be (ha, ha), I added gold mylar balloons spelling out WIN.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

A green plastic tablecloth on the table mimics the green of the football field turf.  To carry on the stadium theme for my party table, I built a few simple risers out of 1x6 pine boards and molding pieces. They're barely noticeable on the table, but they make the display so much more interesting to look at and give you the feeling of bleachers. I picked up a variety of vintage style glass soda bottles in our team colors for guests to drink. You can find lots of paper straws and bags in different colors and patterns at any party supply store. I cut down the tops of some blue lunch bags, making them the perfect size to hold single servings of chips. The black and white referee-stripe cups are great for holding queso or salsa for dipping. We also offered some spicy ranch pretzels in little polka dot paper bags. Buttered popcorn would also be fun in small bags.  Serve a variety of yummy snacks and your guests will be thrilled.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Place the stars of your snack table -- the Tyson® chicken-- in galvanized metal containers lined with leaf lettuce, add a couple veggie trays and dips, and you're all set!  Just make the chicken strips right before guests arrive so they'll be piping hot and you can enjoy some of the snacks (and the great company) without being tied to the kitchen all night.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com
Garlic Parmesan Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips

Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips (3.5 lbs)
1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
Parmesan Cheese (the powder variety in the can)

Cook chicken strips according to package directions.  While chicken is cooking, melt butter in a small sauce pan.  Add garlic powder and parsley, stirring until combined.

Dip each chicken strip in the warm garlic butter and place on a baking sheet.  Sprinkle a generous amount of Parmesan cheese on both side of each chicken strip.  Transfer to serving tray and serve while warm. 

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com
Sweet and Spicy Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips

Tyson® Crispy Chicken Strips (3.5 lbs)
1/3 C. of your favorite hot sauce
1 1/2 C. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. water

Heat hot sauce, brown sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat for several minutes until sugar is completely dissolved.  Place in refrigerator to cool.  You want the sauce to be nice and cool so it thickens up a bit and really clings to the chicken strips. While sauce is cooling, cook chicken strips according to package instructions.  

Dip each chicken strip into the cooled sauce and place on a baking sheet.  Transfer to serving container when ready to serve.  Serve warm.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com
Delicious Dipping Sauce

1 C. mayonnaise
1 C. milk
1/2 envelope of Ranch dressing mix
1/2 envelope of Italian Dressing mix

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until smooth.  Allow to set up in the refrigerator for several minutes before serving.  It will be very runny until it sets.  

This dipping sauce is fantastic with all three flavors of chicken and makes an awesome dip for veggies, as well.

Win on game day with these delicious party ideas and recipes from my3monsters.com

Make your Game Day party a win with these delicious recipes and easy decor ideas next time your team hits the field! What's your favorite game day snack? Share it in the comments!



1.11.2017

Printable Hand Lettered Memory Calendar

Download this darling printable Hand Lettered Memory Calendar from my3monsters.com and start recording all your special memories and happy moments this year!
Hi guys! I love January because I can justify getting new planners and calendars.  There is something about a fresh slate that feels so satisfying!  I decided to try something a little different this year, in addition to my dry-erase family calendar and my regular planner.  Every year I sit down in December to write our family Christmas letter and my mind instantly goes blank.  I can’t seem to remember ANYTHING that happened in the previous eleven months.  Please tell me I’m not the only one… 

Download this darling printable Hand Lettered Memory Calendar from my3monsters.com and start recording all your special memories and happy moments this year!
This year I created a memory calendar that looks more like a list than anything else.  I plan to hang it on our fridge or by our desk so it is handy all the time and I can write down cool things that happen each month – awards the kids get in school, fun little family outings, and simple memories that make me smile.  Then, in December, I can pull it out and have a wealth of ideas to add to our letter.  I can also tuck it in the back of my journal and have all those beautiful memories preserved forever. 

Download this darling printable Hand Lettered Memory Calendar from my3monsters.com and start recording all your special memories and happy moments this year!
This year my personal goal is to become more aware of the blessings in my life.  I will also print a copy of this memory calendar just for myself so I can record all the little blessings that come daily – those tender mercies from my Heavenly Father that he gives to bring us joy and help us along the way.  I feel like if we are more aware of those things, and try harder to recognize and record them, they will come more and more frequently.  

This memory calendar is designed to be printed on 8 ½ x 11 cardstock – two months to a page.  Download the printable file here. Simply cut each page in half lengthwise and clip them together with a pretty binder clip.  It is seriously the easiest project EVER!

Happy New Year, friends!

Amy


1.06.2017

2017: The Year of ME

Thank you Jenny Craig for sponsoring this post. -- Get serious about losing weight with Jenny Craig!

Hi guys!  Today I’m going to TOTALLY switch gears on y’all and get a little personal for a minute.  Do you mind?  I feel like most of us over-indulged in sweet treats and rich foods over the holidays.  The general concensus I’m seeing among my online pals is that we are all paying now for slacking off in December. You can see from my past several posts that we were no different around here.

Make 2017 The Year of ME by making your health and well being a priority with Jenny Craig!
If I’m being honest, my slacking off started long before the holidays.  I have THE WORST sweet tooth, and I’m completely addicted to soda.  Like, a 44 ounce a day (minimum) habit.  I need the caffeine and sugar to prop me up through my busy days. I work a full-time day job as an elementary school health assistant and then I come home and try to channel all my creative energy into this blog, all while making sure my little family is cared for, feels loved, and doesn’t drown in clutter and dirty laundry.  I sleep about 5 hours a night. That doesn’t leave me with much time – or energy – for healthy cooking and working out. We end up grabbing burgers or tacos at the drive-thru more often than I would like to admit.  What’s worse is that I actually LIKE fast food.  It’s not something I “suffer through”, wishing I could have something better.  I actually, legitimately enjoy it.  Add to that my love of baking and we’ve got a real problem.  You guys, it’s ugly.  Seriously.

I haven’t always been this way.  I mean, I have always loved fast food, soda, and cookies, BUT – believe it or not – I ran a half marathon about ten years ago.  The training got me in the best shape of my adult life.  I reached a point where my body craved water instead of soda.  I didn’t even think it could do that!  I would get up at 5:00 a.m. to get my run in before the family got up and then I had boundless energy for the rest of the day.  It was awesome.  My race was the first weekend in December.  Having successfully completed my training, I decided to take a break “just for the holidays”.  And here I sit a decade later.

I could just never get going again.  Since then I have struggled with anxiety and depression, my husband has been laid off twice, and I have started working full-time instead of being a stay-home mom.  The puzzle pieces of my life have been scattered and I just haven’t been able to make everything fit back together again.  In that time I have put on over 60 pounds.  I can’t even believe that – it seems like such a huge number, but gaining about 6 pounds a year didn’t seem so bad as it was happening. 

I finally decided that 2017 was going to MY year.  I’m going to make that damn puzzle fit together – in a new and beautiful way – even if it kills me!!  When I was given the opportunity to try Jenny Craig and share my results and thoughts with y’all, I jumped at the chance.  Healthy eating is just something that I am bad at. I don’t know why.  I don’t feel like I’m stupid, but I can’t seem to apply the Food Pyramid to my daily life.  Not only do I not know WHAT to eat, my portion sizes are way out of whack.  When something tastes good, I want more.  And more. Until I feel terrible and full.  

Make 2017 The Year of ME by making your health and well being a priority with Jenny Craig!
The most appealing thing about Jenny Craig to me was one-on-one weekly consultations.  At Jenny Craig, personal support is the cornerstone of what they have been doing for 30 years. Every member is paired with a consultant who provides them with one-on-one support to identify their challenges and goals, and helps them to create unique weekly meal and activity plans.  Each week, my consultant will work with me on my menu, discuss any challenges from the previous week and determine a plan for the week ahead.  Plus, she will keep track of my success with weekly weigh-ins and teach me how to self-monitor.  I need someone who knows this stuff to sit down with me and spell it out in micro-detail.  Tell me what to eat and when to eat it.  Because of my anxiety, I hate making decisions and I kinda’ like being told what to do, so this totally works for me until I become more confident in my food choices.  

I was nervous going to the center for the first time.  I mean, I judge myself pretty harshly for letting my weight get to this point, so I just assume everyone else does, too. My consultant, Kristin, was so nice and super knowledgeable.  I left rearing to go, with a trunk full of healthy meals.

Can we just talk about the meals for a minute here.  I was afraid they were going to be gross frozen meals that tasted like cardboard. And I was afraid I was going to be hungry, like all the time, because they looked pretty small.  I was so wrong!  While you do cook most of the food in the microwave, it tastes like I made it fresh.  They are actually a little yummier than the things I typically cook for my family.  Here’s what I got to eat for lunch on Day 2 this week:

Make 2017 The Year of ME by making your health and well being a priority with Jenny Craig!
A loaded baked potato – with cheese and bacon! – and a huge garden salad.  I wasn’t hungry after eating that plate full of food, but if I had been, there is a whole list of Fresh and Free Additions I can eat as much of as I want to fill up.  Plus, there are snacks built into the eating plan so a few hours later I got to eat this delicious Greek yogurt and banana treat:

Make 2017 The Year of ME by making your health and well being a priority with Jenny Craig!
Our morning schedule is a little bit hectic so I love that there are grab-and-go options I can throw in my purse and take with me to stay on track.  

Make 2017 The Year of ME by making your health and well being a priority with Jenny Craig!
I only really felt hungry the first day, but my body has adapted surprisingly quickly to eating small portions throughout the day instead of grazing all day and bingeing at night.  I have had a mild headache in the afternoons, but that is probably just the caffeine and sugar withdrawal rearing its ugly head.  Today, on Day 4, it hasn’t been an issue at all.  Eating healthier has also motivated me to go walking every evening.  We have been going to the park and walking as a family, which is awesome!

I’m excited to see how this journey will go.  It is brand new for me and I am excited about “rebooting” my system. Kristin told me that Jenny Craig members can expect to lose an average of 1-2 pounds per week, which is a healthy range of weight loss. I promise not to get all spammy, but I will post updates as I go on my Instagram account with all my other projects, if you’re interested in following along.

What are your goals for the new year?  We're going to rock 2017, friends!

Amy

Advertisement
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...