MyMemories Suite

MyMemories Suite
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Monday, September 1, 2014

TCOT's Weekly Menu Planner #24

Welcome To The Cherry On Top!

Back in the saddle this week with some totally awesome recipes and helpful, FREE printables that will make your life even easier still.  I've teamed up with my girl Raquel from Boutique Cute Dolls.  She's a designer over there and a recent kit of her, Things Cooking was just what I needed for today's blog handy helper!

First!  The menu for this week.

Meatless Monday:

Ravioli in a fresh tomato sauce is at the top of my favourites list.  If you don't want to do the meatless thing, then buy some raviolis with meat in them.  Solved!  Fresh pasta cooks under 5 minutes and it exceeds dried pasta by far when it comes to flavour and health.  Buy the best canned, diced tomatoes you can buy for a recipe like this or use your fresh ones from the garden.  As if?!  (My pa-la totally sets me up with his delicious, organic veggies.   Mega score!)  Sautee some chopped garlic and onions in a couple of tables spoons olive oil, add your tomatoes and herbs of your choosing, let it heat through and BAM!  It's ready!  Of course, you can go with a jarred version, but Boo!  There's almost always sugar in there and all kinds of other ingredients that are not good for you.  Yuck!

Oh!  Don't be afraid of that olive oil either.  It is really good for you. I often drizzle a little olive oil over the top of my dish right before serving because uncooked olive oil has even more health benefits than cooked!  This recipe is perfect.  Click on the image to get it.



Quesedillas are a kids favourite.  The variety is absolutely amazing!  The way you cook them also.  These are not known here in Belgium, but when I serve them, they ask for the recipe and typically make them for their own families.  My hubby and I like shrimp on ours, the kids like just cheese or some sliced sandwich chicken or ham on their.  You can pan them up for a couple of minutes on each side or throw them puppies in the over for 10 minutes if you don't wanna dirty the stove.

There are very little dishes and the cooking itself also uber short!  Garnish with some sour cream, sambal, green onions, salsa, guacamole....unbelievable, right?!



Big Salad with Fresh Tuna.  This could be your flex day if your too busy to cook up something for the Fam or you have some left overs around, but we will be enjoying a big ole fresh salad from the last of summer's goodies and grilling up a tuna steak to go with it.  have you ever had FRESH TUNA?!  OMG!!  I've only had it very recently, but, Man!  That stuff is good!  That crap in the can can't compare.  It's really expensive here, but in some places like Spain, it's very affordable.  I buy it when I see it on promotion, which ain't often!

Use THIS recipe.  There are some many recipes where they marinate the tuna!  Hello?!  Fresh tuna is so gosh darn delicious, you DON'T have to marinade it?!


I've been researching the Paleo Diet for a ton of different reasons and I'm thinking about taking on the challenge.  The above meal if Paleo perfect!  Delicious fish filled with Mega Healthy Omega 3 and all the other fabulous minerals, fiber, vitamins from our salad will give us an awesome healthy kick!


Slow cooker ribs, Baby!

Get out your flow cooker.  Slice up some onions, place them on the bottom, place your ribs on top of the onions, pour over your favourite BBQ sauce and head off to work.  When ya get home, you'll think you're in a restaurant.  Heat up a can of corn or even better some corn on the cobb.  It's ready in a mere 10 minutes!  That's it.  It's all ya need.

Doy ou know the Six Sisters?  Fabulous recipes, my friends and fans.  Check out their recipe for ribs. (The link wasn't working at the time.  So, I'm giving the Pinterest link. I'm sure it will be fixed soon.)

Fun Food Friday:

Pizza is back on the list!  It has been way too, long.  I'll be looking into Paleo versions of this for our family, but I'll set you up with a traditional recipe.  Buying the packaged, ready to go crust isn't such a sin if  you don't do it too, often.  I never like the taste of if though.  Use a tortilla if you have some left over.  My boys love pizza on a tortilla and they love helping to make pizza crust.  Most of the time I make it from scratch and sometimes I make it in the bread machine.  I used to think it was quite some work until I made it a couple of times.  The longest part is the rising time, but by the time the oven is ready, all of your toppings are laid out and ya finish that delicious aperitif, it should be about ready!  Ha!


I've got ya totally set up with this link from the image above.  FIVE different varieties of pizza dough making AND a VIDEO.  Thanks to the Food Network Blog.


A Greek Gyro Platter is on tap for today.  I can't get a gyro here, in Belgium.  They have kebab, but it's not nearly as good.  So, as usual, I have to make the darn thing myself.  Since I'm trying to eliminate grains, I won't even bother with a wrap or pita.  I'll be just diving into the meat and veggies.  I love Feta and I know I'll be eventually giving up the dairy, too, but one thing at a time, Man!


When you click on the above image, you'll swept away to my recipe box at AllRecipes.  They use beef for this recipe, but I use lamb.  Awesome!  You could also use chicken if you prefer or no meat at all!


Paella is up for dins tonight.  Let that sucker simmer all evening then dig in or whip up a speedy version.  There are so many varieties of paella out there.  


You are gonna wanna thank me for this recipe.  I often do a quicker version with a lot less seafood, but we do exactly this one for a very special occasions.  Take time on Sunday to be in the kitchen and around the table with your loved ones.

I promised you something special today.  Here's your menu planner that I designed with Boutique Cute Doll's fun digital scrapbooking it, "Things Cooking".
You can print it out and laminate it, magnetise it to your fridge, then use a dry erase marker.  I will be framing it and using a fry erase marker directly on the glass.  Simply click right on the image and it will automatically download to your computer.  It's a 12x12 image, but you can always resize it to the size you want and print.


I've also designed a handy dandy grocery list and mini planner for you to take to the grocers!  Click on the image below and check out my my girl's Kel blog where you can find it and download it, too. Please share the links with your friends and family and not the download itself.  These were meant for your enjoyment and we sure do appreciate the traffic on our blogs.  It's a great way to say thanks.  These are also NOT for resale.  Duh, right?!  Hehehe...

 BCD Blog

Thanks for hanging out at The Cherry.  Enjoy your weeks worth of fabulous food!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Menu Planner Week #23

Welcome to the 23rd Weekly Menu planner!

Planing your week's menu saves time, hassle, money and ya might even find yourself fitter if you choose healthy meals like the ones you find here.

Meatless Monday:

Follow this delicious recipe for Kung Pao Spaghetti.  Leave out the chicken, add shrimp, use both if you like and you could even use a non pasta or gluten free type pasta as well.  So versatile!

 Kung Pao spaghetti recipe

Tuesday: M, S, V= meat starch veg or even a flex day if ya wanna prepare some left overs or simply bring home some delicious fresh made goodies from your local delicatessen.  I'll be firing up my grill pan, baking some potatoes and making this recipe below of balsamic glazed carrots.  Only I substitute the sugar with honey.  Goodness!  Do NOT use 3 tablespoons of sugar?!  This isn't dessert.  Hehehe...Sugar is pretty much poison for our bodies.  So limit it any time you can.  I'm throwing some pork chops on my handy grill pan and I've got some garlic butter for over those baked potatoes. Sprinkle some salt and pepper over both sides of your porkers and grill until your desired doneness. Depending on the thickness, I go about 2.5 minutes each side on a medium high heat on a very lightly olive oiled pan.


Wednesday:  steak, crochets and a fresh salad

Wow, right!  Snip some fresh rosemary or use dried if ya haven't got the fresh stuff (although rosemary is THE easiest herb to grow.) and chop it up with some fresh garlic and salt.  I actually take these ingredients plus a couple table spoons of olive oil and put it in my mortal and pedestal and make a paste, then rub it all into my meat. Mmmm....  I never make my steak like they do here, but rather use my good old, cast iron grill pan.  I would definitely hit up the garlic butter though.  Just watch your salt content.  If you use the garlic butter, it's better that you don't use the salt in your rub.

You can decide if ya need the carbs or not.  I'm serving the steak with a basic, fresh salad and balsamic vinegar, olive oil and herb dressing.  Put some croutons on that salad if ya gotta have your carbs.

Thursday: fish, rice and broccoli

Why not try this delicious recipe of tilapia baked parmesan?!  If you're wanting to cut calories and cholesterol, than it will be best to ditch the cheese.  However, hard cheeses like parmesan, are lower in fat and cholesterol.  Yay!  I've got two recipes ready for you because many peeps out there are not so great with rice making.  I was terrible for decades!  The recipe below is for a garlic, Phillipean recipe.  I love how simple it is.  Give it a try and see that'll it will fit with a lot of future meals, too.  


They are also giving you an extra garlic version, but you can decide how much is right for your family.  Remember garlic is awesome for combatting cholesterol!


I love making broccoli with my fish, but you can choose whatever FRESH veggie your family prefers.  Yes, fresh!  Always fresh!

Fun Food Friday:  slow cooker chicken taquitos

Fabulous recipe here, folks!  Grab these couple of ingredients, throw them in your crock pot, head to work and when ya get home, not only will your house smell fantastic, but dinner will be nearly ready!  
A few tips for this recipe.  Chipotle is not accessible where I live, but I did manage to grab some dried chipotle mix that I'll use for this in its place.  I also never use canned bouillon either.  In its place, use water and some granules or best your thawed out fresh version.  (As if?!)  Hehee...


Saturday:  Lemon, orzo shrimp

I love orzo dishes!  I love one pot meals, too!  This one is a fabulous!  I love this site, by the way.  All great ingredients and fairly easy and fast.  Check out the site further for more fabulous meal ideas.  You can use fish or chicken here for a meat substitute or no meat.  If you have no orzo use something similar.  Of course, risotto would be FAB-U-LOUS as would any smaller, compact pasta or even rice!


Sunday:  Pot Roast Patio Fries

You're gonna need a bit of time for this baby, but Man!  This is one kick ass recipe!  
A couple of tips with this recipe.  You probably don't have left over roast beef available, so click here for a delicious slow cooker recipe that you can use. If you don't use it all make some awesome beef sandwiches tomorrow!  If you think the sauce is a bit difficult, then I've got an uber easy replacement.  Simply, melt some cream cheese in a shallow pan (on low heat) and add some shredded fresh cheese to it.  That's it!  Use one of the cheeses from the recipe, though.  


Now, get that list together and get cook'n!

Amazing Flash Sales At Mscraps

Every now and then an awesome deal comes around and The Cherry is here to tell you about it.  Check out these crazy deals from Key Lime Digi Designs and Mscraps.  Amazing dollar deals on both PU and CU, yay!


How about this gorgeous FREE kit when you spend just $6 in the shop?!  I love that!!!

 Mscraps free with purchase

Awesome kits like French Quarter from Key Lime Digi Design can be found for a measly buck!  Unreal! And there is more to come!  So, stay tuned!

Here's a closer look.  I think this woman is go'n nuts selling gorgeous kits like this for $1!

Enjoy the sales!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

TCOT & MyMemories Fun With Freebies

Hi there, Fans!  Welcome back to The Cherry On Top!

Shooo, have I been busy or what?!  I just had to stop and make a feature for MyMemories.  I worked with this awesome kit from Albums To Remember and made an entire photo album that is available for purchase in the store.  Yay!

I'm here to share with you some of the layouts I made for that album as a means of inspiration for you as well as share a bunch of freebies from The Cherry On Top, Albums To Remember and MyMemories!

So, how about this fabulous kit, Rainbow Love?!  Unreal with its bright, fun filled goodies.  It was a blast working with it.  I may have went a bit over board, but who doesn't love rainbows?!  I've recently created some word art to add to this collection and I've got a fun freebie for you, too.

Are you ready to look at some pretty pictures and get inspired!?!  Let's slide down the rainbow of fun!

 A2R @ MM

I've chosen just a couple of layouts from the 20 pages for the Rainbow Love Photo Album.  Here are some of my favourites.  This one tops my list!  Liam is always so silly!


Here's a great page for your multiple photos of your special sweeties.


Center up your pictures, blow up the good ones, shrink up the others for a nice fit, showing off as many memories as you can scrap.


This kit is great for all kinds isn't it?!  Boys, girls, babies, tweens, parties.  I'm not sure you'll find a more versatile photo book/ templates?!


I just couldn't choose which pictures to use!  So I had to put a lot of pages with multiple photo possibilities.  Look at that tiny baby laughing it up.  He reminds me just of his Uncle Brian here and I love that onzie!


Some more favourites of that squishy, square face.  Just his grand dad!  


This one brings a tear to my eye.  These two were the best buddies.  Despite, JJ's Autism, this kit stuck through all the crap he dished out, until the end.  I took this days before my Puka Poo died. :(


Here's the word art I made to coordinate with the templates, but you can use them for anything and put them in your own stash of goodies. (This thing is so hot off the press, it may not yet be in the store, but keep your eyes out.  Soon!)


I turned a piece of word art into my wall photo for my Facebook.

The Cherry On Top has this freebie available for you.  It's a clustery, multi photoed border.  I have an example of how you can use it.  I designed it so that you can turn it to go across your page as well as down.  Maybe even angle that sucker up!



Above are two fabulous freebies offered to you from the designers at MyMemories.  Click on the image to get sent over to MM for the FREE download.  Remember, it's only for ONE WEEK!

If you are still on the fence about grabbing the MyMemories software to start your digital dream, no worries.  They have a FREE trial version of the software.  It's so, so easy to use and the cheapest scrapbooking software on the  market.  Besides, you have excellent customer service, tutorials galore and me to help ya out!  Dive in and give it a try!  Get $10 off the already low price by using this special, TCOT Code:  STMMMS18837.  Copy this code, click on the MM badge below and get scrap'n!


Do you feel spoiled now?!  Leave me some love by commenting and spread around my link to your scrappy friends and family.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

T&T, Me, Freebies & Hybrids

Hello!  Welcome to The Cherry On Top!

Today, I have Cat from This & That By Catherine in the spot light.  She has a lovely kit that's been recently released.  GardenParty isn't just for garden parties!  Check out these fabulous, fun colours.  I'm thinking happy pics, pics of tweens, teens, babies and all things that embody life and bring a smile to your face.

Click on any of the images to get links and more information.



Cat always has freebies accompanying her releases and Garden Party is no exception.  Head around tot he various Cat hide outs and grab them to add to your stash.  Her prices are very affordable, too.  What better way to say thanks for all of the freebies you've been providing AND grab a fab kit for just $3.  I know, right?!  Yes!  $3 and only a couple bucks more for the bundle.



Awesome, right?!  I love going large with the ellies and framing up a fabulous picture like this one with my beautiful girls.  OK, they are not MY beautiful girls!!!  They are my friend's gorgeous babies.

The Cherry On Top has a unique FREEBIE for you today.  Think outside of the box with this one and enjoy!  You can use it like I did with the layouts above and below.  Just keep adding your favourite goodies from this awesome kit.

 free corner cluster

Or bring it down and go hybrid with something like this card I designed.  Made in minutes with a blast of creativity and a great kit!

Do me a favor and leave me some love if you download this.  I have no way of keeping track.  If freebies are your thing, then ya better head over to The Cherry On Top's Facebook Page and Pinterest Boards.  Everyday freebies!  Dozens!

Thanks for hanging out at The Cherry!  See ya again, soon!

Monday, August 18, 2014

TCOT's Weekly Menu Planner Week #22

Welcome to The Cherry On Top's Weekly Menu Planner!

Planning is the way to go.  Using TCOT's weekly menu planner guarantees an exciting array of foods that are healthy, easy to cook, inexpensive AND fast!  What  more could you ask for?!

Let's DIVE into this weeks menu!

Meatless Monday:  corn chowder  (I know there is bacon there.  Leave it out!)

Not into the vegetarian thing?  Then make some clam chowder.  My hubby scoffs at the idea of Meatless Monday.  Boo!  Cutting back on red meats is so much better for your health.

Here's what I have for you:


Awesome, right?!  Just a handful of ingredients which ya might already have around the house and your off to a fantastic, soothing dinner!  Add some bacon if ya gotta have the meat or take it out for a healthier choice.  If ya think it just  might not be enough, bring home some fresh baked bread to go along with it!

Tuesday:  Flex day, meat, starch, veg

We will be having sausages and stump.  I'll hook ya up with the recipe for this Belgian favourite and an absolute HIT with the kids.  It'll be a forehead smack! LOL!

We will be having chipolatas/sausage, mashed potatoes, carrots and a touch of cabbage (mixed in that stump recipe from a previous menu) and gravy.  It's a favourite of the kids and when made from scratch, very healthy.  It is also an excellent way to introduce your kids (or picky adult eaters) to new veggies. Use less veggies if you think they may not like it. 

I'll help ya out by providing a homemade gravy recipe and tell you this.  I was terrible at making gravy in the beginning.  It really did take me a long time before I got it right.  Now, I can whip up any kind of sauce and gravy in less than 5 minutes.  All from scratch and with real food ingredients.

Click here for a VIDEO on how to make gravy.

I keep my gravy drippings (which rarely ever have fat that I need to skim off and a little bit of fat makes it taste goo, too.) I reserve my veggie and potato water as well.  Then I take 2 tablespoons of flour or corn flour and shake it up vigorously with 2 tablespoons of COLD water and add at that to the meat, potato and veggie reserves.  Stir until heated through and thickened and add salt, pepper....

Wednesday:  uitsmijter (pronounced: out-smay-tr)

This is another Belgian staple and I know it would be a hit in the states. All the recipes are in Dutch, of course.  So, I'll hit ya up with a quickie!  Who doesn't love a quickie?!

My recipe is the gourmet recipe!  Let me hit you up with the speedy version first.  Make some toast.  Maybe with the left overs from Monday's dinner?  Fry your eggs like above.  What do ya call it?  A dippy egg?  Sunny side up?  In the mean time lay a slice of cheese over your toast and a slice of ham on top of that.  If ya want, zap it for just a couple of seconds to melt the cheese and heat up the ham.  Place your eggs over the top when they are finished cooking and voila!  One awesome meal.  I love mine with small, bean sprouts or rucola and some tomatoes.

If ya really wanna do it up, here's what you make.  BTW, this is a MAN PLEASER RECIPE!!!  Hehehe....OK!  Get your eggs cooking on another burner. Melt some butter or herb butter in the pan and lightly toast one side of your bread (go for a light, grain type of bread, not too strong)  flip it and toast some more. No more than a minute for each side.  Then slap that slice of cheese on it, the ham slice and let it warm up a bit,  Now, keep that fire LOW!  Gently place your egg(s) over the top sprinkle with a touch of garlic powder or your dried garlic mill along with a few other herbs and BOOM!  Awesome meal!  (Consider putting a dome over it for just a couple seconds to heat through.)

Thursday:  Fish, rice, veg

You choose!  I'm not big on all kinds of fish.  I like more mild tasting ones like cod and other types of white fish.  Tilapia is yummy, too.  Typically, I gently sauté my my fish in olive oil, sprinkle it with some black pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon or coat it in Old Bay or a cajun seasoning!  Hehehe.... 

I always advise a rice cooker or steamer.  I'm terrible with making rice, but it always comes out great in my cooker.  Thank goodness because I love rice!  Maybe you would rather try some couscous?  It cooks really fast and goes great with just about any herbs and a pad of butter.  I've got'cha hooked up to a recipe here for couscous.  I'm not a huge fan of fruit in stuff that ain't for dessert.  Hehehe...Here's a very basic, but nice recipe.


We will be having giant green beans from my pa-la's garden.  Yes!!!  Always go with fresh veggies where you can or frozen.  Never use canned or jarred ones. Bleck!

Fun Food Friday:  Sloppy Joe's

A couple of tips for you:  Use a pita or a wrap instead of bread.  Put your onions, garlic and peppers in a food processor for the veggie dislikers and NEVER put sugar in.  That's right!  NEVER! In nearly every recipe there already is sweet stuff either in the tomatoes or the ketchup.  Sugar is BAD stay away from it.  Hehehe...


If you are a basic kind of cooker, then definitely hit up Better Homes and Gardens.  I have their old cook books and make a lot of recipes from them.  Tried and true recipes with all real food ingredients.

Saturday:  risotto, parma ham and zucchini

This one is kind of crazy.  I've got a picture, but the recipe doesn't exactly go with it.  I just always like a picture with my recipe, darn it.  Hehehe...  The recipe is nearly a replica of the one I make, only I use zucchini, thinly sliced and not asparagus.  If neither one of these two are a family favourite, then consider peas.

This recipe will take some time to make.  There are quite a few ingredients in there, but you can substitute like crazy.  Prosciutto, parma, bayonne....any kind of similar ham to this would work.  I've used them all!  Hehehe...No worries if you don't have the saffron either.  I've  never used it in my recipe.


Sunday:  salad sandwiches

I'll be stopping off at my local, fresh butcher.  She's got some amazing salads for on bread.  Head to a deli or the grocers or best, make a salad yourself.  How about egg salad or tuna salad?  I'll hook you up with a couple of recipes for egg salad.  It's very easy and filling, too.  Just remember to make fresh bread and try to stay away from white bread if possible.  Especially, those with the really long shelf life.  Ugh!


Hey!  Ya don't have to go thorough all of the peeling hubbub either.  Crack your eggs in a a greased muffin pan, place it in the over and bake for about 12 minutes then chop'm up! 

Man!  This one took me awhile!  Hehehe...I figured I owed you after cheating last week.  LOL!

Now share this site with your friends and family that could use this kind of help.  We all can eat better and smarter.

See ya next week!