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Friday, September 23, 2016

Best Roll Dough Recipe Ever

Warm, gooey, frosted sweet rolls . . . we all love 'em, right?  Well get ready for the roll recipe tutorial of a lifetime.  Our recipe contributor, Amy J. is here with the BEST ever roll dough recipe!  And I mean, EVER.  This simple roll recipe is all you need to make dinner rolls, bread sticks, and of course sweet rolls--like Amy's amazing Caramel Bottom Cinnamon Rolls and Sour Cream Orange Rolls. The added gluten makes all the difference in serving chewy, soft, springing, sweet rolls. Anyone can make great rolls.  These step-by-step instructions will make you a roll-making pro!  Hang on tight!  Here we go….


Stir together wet ingredients, set aside.

Stir together dry ingredients, using only 4 cups flour, set aside.

Combine wet and dry ingredients.   Stir by hand until combined and gluten is activated and stretchy…about 2 minutes.

Here it is starting to get stretchy . . . 

Put in stand-alone mixer and gradually add flour until dough just barely sticks to fingers (see pictures below).

This is too sticky on the fingers.  Needs more flour.

This dough is just right.  Barely sticks to my fingers.

Knead 10 minutes.  You can also knead by hand if you don’t have a large mixer.

Divide dough in half, cover and set aside.  Prepare sweet rolls as desired.  This recipe makes two jellyroll pans of rolls…40 rolls total. DEEEEELISH! 

Form dough into balls about the size of a golf ball.  I fit 30 on each greased jelly roll pan.  This recipe makes 2 jelly roll pans.

Cover and let rise until double.  Don't you love my handy little cover for my pan.  If you can find a pan like this with the cover, GRAB IT!  Plus, if you can find a couple, you can stack them! The rolls rise perfectly!

Bake at 350 until golden brown 20-25 minutes in an electric oven....gas will take longer.  Enjoy!


3 c. hot water…shower hot
½ c. oil
½ c. sugar
3 eggs, beaten

2 Tble INSTANT yeast…I like Saf Instant yeast
1 Tble salt
2 Tble GLUTEN…this makes ALL the difference!  Your rolls will be soft and chewy…AMAZING!
4 c. flour

4-6 c. flour

*Stir together wet ingredients, set aside.  Stir together dry ingredients, using only 4 cups flour, set aside.  Combine wet and dry ingredients.  Stir by hand until combined and gluten is activated and stretchy…about 2 minutes.  Put in stand-alone mixer and gradually add flour until dough just barely sticks to fingers.  Knead 10 minutes.  You can also knead by hand if you don’t have a large mixer.

Divide dough in half, cover and set aside. Form dough into balls about the size of a golf ball. Let rise double.   

Bake at 350 until golden brown 20-25 minutes in an electric oven....gas will take longer.  

Note: If you wish to make just one variety…double the filling amounts.  This recipe makes two jellyroll pans of rolls…40 rolls total.

This dough recipe is also awesome for dinner rolls!

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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Simple Family Night Kit and Scripture Stories Printables

What did your children learn from you today?  Was it positive or negative?  Did they learn anything at all from you?  Today I want to share with you a way to teach your children things that really matter.  I'm gonna show you how to make an simple Family Night Kit (Family Home Evening or FHE idea kit) and tell you all about My Lil Pumpkin Patch and their Scripture Stories on Etsy to help make your family night kit quick and easy (and cute!).  You'll love the 30% discount coupon code at the bottom too.

*This post is sponsored by My Li'l Pumpkin Patch.  This post may or may not contain affiliate links.  All opinions and ideas are my own.

I decided a long time ago before my children could even walk, that I was going to be their number one teacher.  Like many of you, I decided that there were certain things I wanted them to know about life, and that I did not want them to find it out from the world first.  I wanted to tell them first.  I decided NOT to depend only on the schools, church teachers, or neighbors and family to teach them, but instead to first to depend on me.  When my children were younger, many people asked me how my kidlets knew so much about good values, the gospel, and even just random good things.  The answer is simple . . . I just taught them.  I didn't have a magical technique, but I did have a strong desire to make learning fun and engaging for my kidlets, no matter how small they were.  AND I made it a regular occurrence--at least once a week I sat down with them and just taught them in the best way I knew how.  It wasn't always perfect and sometimes what I taught didn't sink in.  But over time, I have reaped the rewards of my efforts and you can too.

I remember as a child sitting and church or school and loving visuals and interactive learning.  I hated long, boring recitations that someone just read from a paper.  I hated busy work.  I wanted to touch, see, try, and feel something while I learned.  So I carried that over into the teaching of my children.  I knew they could learn if I helped them enjoy it.

So I made a little Family Night Kit.  Family Night is a special night just for the family.  It's something my LDS faith really encourages.  We gather in our home for an hour or less.  We sing, play games, teach values, pray, and eat dessert.  We take turns teaching each other lessons.  My kit makes this easy.  In our crazy world, it's the one night where we all sit down, look each other in the eye, and actually talk.  We talk about what matters most.  We do our best to bond (and not fight . . . though it has happened), and to enjoy the few moments where we are all in one room.   Our Family Night Kit is my go-to kit to teach values when I need a quick lesson.

How to make a simple Family Night Kit:

1.  Make a simple list

Make a list of the subjects and values you want to teach your children.  My list included things like: obedience, faith, honesty, service, love in the family, forgiveness, prayer.

2.  Put together a storage box

Make a file folder for each of the subjects on your list.  Store them in a file box or file cabinet.  Notice how my labels are even handwritten.  Whether typed or not, do what is easiest for you.

3.  Collect supplies on each subject

Take some time to gather some teaching materials that go along with each subject.  Keep an eye out for articles, stories, coloring sheets, and pictures.  When you find something that goes with one of your subjects, simply add it to the file folder.  This is a process that can be done over time.  Think of it as your family night collection.

I held onto items I got from church and stories from our church's children's magazine.  Don't make this a big chore.  Kids will be happy with any variety.  Use a laminator to help items last longer and survive kids touching them.

This is the laminator I use . . .

4.  Add visuals and printables

It's nice when you can find some easy printables and visuals.  Kids need a lot of hands-on stuff and visuals.  Games are good too.  Remember to keep it fun for them.

I love these printable Scripture Stories from My Li'l Pumpkin Patch.  So cute and colorful!!  They are perfect for teaching your children the stories in the scriptures. These scripture printables were created by Stephanie Albright who says of them,

"I had the idea to create visuals for scripture stories a couple years ago for my kids, and I'm so excited to share them with you!  I desire to instill in my children a knowledge and love for the scriptures and the people therein, so my kids may look to those people/stories as an example of faith and courage when they are faced with their own trials.  These stories work great for Family Home Evening, talks in Primary, and Sabbath Day learning.  I hope you 

The Scripture Stories are easy to print and easy to cut.  No intricate lines to try to get around with your scissors (I only have time for 3rd grade cutting--seriously!)  You can laminate them for extra sturdiness.  You can add felt to the back to make them into flannel board stories, or add sticks to make them little puppets.  The ways to use these are endless!

There are Bible story printables as well as Book of Mormon printables.  Stephanie has more stories coming like The Nativity story, as well as other items for kids like quiet books, mini scripture cases, carseat covers and more!

I want you to be able to try these Scripture Stories!  Because I LOVE them so much Stephanie is offering my readers at 30% discount with code BLISSFUL30!  This is awesome because they are already a low price, so this discount makes them only $2.80 and $3.50!!  Code expires 11/1/16.

USE CODE BLISSFUL30 at checkout to get 30% off these Scripture Stories 

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Monday, September 19, 2016

How to make a Cuban Sandwich

It's Amy J. here again with a great Cuban Sandwich recipe.  Have you ever had a Cuban sandwich?  My roommate in college (yeah, yeah, forever ago!) was making dinner one day and asked me if I’d ever had a Cuban Sandwich.
“Nope…I’ve never heard of Cuban Sandwiches.”  I replied…completely disinterested. 
“Well, I have an extra one.  It’s yours if you want it.”
I couldn’t turn down such a generous offer, so I sat down with her to share her dinner. 

D E E E E LISH!  That’s all I can say!  Since those college days I have served these countless times with soup when we have company!  The combination may sound different, but TRY THEM!  They have a savory meaty flavor, with a velvety richness of melty cheese, the freshness and crunch of a pickle and don’t forget the butter crispiness of a grilled Italian roll.  Completely satisfying and delicious….even for people who hate pickles!  I promise!  It’s soul food my friends!  Enjoy!  Love and pickle juice!  -- Amy J

Gather your ingredients:

Italian rolls or Hoagies, Canadian Bacon or thinly sliced deli ham, thinly sliced deli turkey, Vlasic dill pickles, provolone cheese (or mozzarella, or jack… today I have Jack cheese in my fridge.  Choose what you like!)

Take each roll and butter the top and bottom.  Slice open rolls and spread with mayonnaise, if desired.  Place a few slices of ham, and turkey on bottom half of roll.  Top with a slice or two of pickle and top with cheese. Place top half of roll on sandwich.

Place 3 to 4 sandwiches in panini press or skillet to cook.  Cook to allow cheese to melt and meat to get piping hot.  Crunchy, cheesy, meaty paradise!  Enjoy!


Cuban Sandwiches

1 doz Italian or Hoagie Rolls
1 lb     good quality, thinly sliced deli ham or Canadian Bacon
(incidentally…there is so such thing as Canadian Bacon in Canada….trust me, we lived there for 5 years and made complete fools of ourselves when trying to order Canadian Bacon on our pizza…)
1 lb     good quality, thinly sliced deli turkey
6        Vlasic dill pickles, thinly sliced….or your favorite dills.  We think Vlasic is the best…
1 lb     sliced provolone cheese…or mozzarella or jack whatever you have that in your fridge.
          Mayonnaise….optional (I don’t spread mine with mayo…but the recipe does call for it)

Heat your panini press or stovetop skillet (on med). 

Take each roll and butter the top and bottom.  Slice open rolls and spread with mayonnaise, if desired.  Place a few slices of ham, and turkey on bottom half of roll.  Top with a slice or two of pickle and top with cheese.  Place top half of roll on sandwich and place four sandwiches in panini press or skillet to cook.  If using a skillet, cover while cooking.  Cook on medium to allow cheese to melt and meat to get piping hot.  If using a skillet us a spatula to smash down the sandwiches to make them all flat and amazing!  Repeat with remaining ingredients.  Keep sandwiches hot in 250 degree oven while you cook the rest.  Serve hot with your favorite soup.  Enjoy!!!

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Friday, September 9, 2016

Thoughts on Worrying and Persevering

It's been stressful lately.  I don't know why.  We are on a schedule and school is in session and overall I am content.  But a lot of things changed in our family this school year.  Little things.  Nothing big or noteworthy, but my children are experiencing new changes, some of it good and some of it bad.  And I'm never good with change.  It feels like things are happening so fast and we are so busy, and I just want to grab hold of my children and squeeze them tight.  I want to tell them that everything is going to be okay.  That change is hard, but it can also be good.  I want to tell them that life is sometimes confusing and that the answers are not always right there waiting at our doorstep.  Sometimes we have to go find the answers.  And sometimes we just have to wait.  And persevere.  And hope.  And keep going.  And sometimes we just have to keep praying.  I want to just sit with them on a cool evening and soak in a sunset.  Or lay on the soft green grass in our backyard and watch the clouds.  But most of all I want them to know that I love them, and I am behind them every step of the way as we step into their new life adventures.

These wise words from Walt Disney help a little.  He said, "Why worry? If you've done the very best you can, worrying won't make it any better."

May you persevere through the changes and stresses life brings you.  Louis Zamperini (from the story of Unbroken--which I totally loved and highly recommend!) said, "To persevere is important to everyone.  Don't give up.  Don't give in.  There is always an answer to everything."

Have a blissful day.

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Monday, September 5, 2016


*This giveaway is courtesy of  I was given products to try and show my readers.  This post may contain affiliate links.  There is no cost to enter the giveaway or click on affiliate links. Enjoy!

Wahoo!  I am just jumping out of my socks to tell you about this wonderful giveaway just for my readers from Minted!!  Oh my heavens!!  I love the stuff at Minted so much and I wanted to share with you some of my favorite things.  And this Minted Giveaway is for a gift of $250 of anything they want from their website!!

As you may know, I have moved a bunch of times in the past 9 years and we are finally in a house to STAY!  Problem is this house has walls that need to be filled with homey stuff, so we can feel like we actually live here. I have been buying stuff from, a little bit here and a little bit there, to make our house feel like home.  I recently became an affiliate for them and so I can share the good deals and hold this giveaway for you!  Minted has all kinds of cuteness.  They specialize in customizable art prints (and framing), custom lampshades, custom curtains, table linens, and fabrics.  They have party and holiday decor, wedding stuff galore, and even cake plates (I'm not even kidding!)  Minted is also known for their stationary, holiday cards, and invitations of all kinds.  And they have all art.  Unique, beautiful wall art for your home.  Even if you don't enter the awesome $250.00 giveaway, at least go check out their site--your creative side will thank you.

Click image to enter the $250 giveaway:

Official Rules:

*Readers simply need to enter their first name, last name and email address to enter the $250 contest.

* This giveaway will only be open to U.S. residents.  

* The giveaway will run until from 9/5/16 until 11:59 pm PDT on 9/12/16.

* One entry per individual and email address.

Take a look at these beautiful Minted items:

I fell in love with this artful shelf right away and those little clips to hold school art.



Pillows (different sizes and styles)

Here are some of my favorite Minted products in my home:

I'm in love with their lampshades.  You can change the colors on most of them to get what YOU want.  This is exactly the colors I needed for our master bedroom.

This is our family's motto:  Work Hard & Be Nice.  I truly believe this and love having it posted in our home!

The artful shelf totally helps CLEAR CLUTTER off my fridge!

This is a customizable print from Minted.  It's the stuff that makes our family unique.  These are our favorite things and the stuff that is most important to us.

Some other fun custom-made art I have made recently.

This is simple but sweet.  I had the colors changed and the print framed at

They have banners and party stuff like you wouldn't believe.  Make them how you want.

I hope you enjoy this giveaway!  It's our gift to you.  Have a blissful day!

Now through 9/6, Enjoy 15% off wedding and baby + kids orders

*excludes art prints, fabric & home decor

Use code LABORDAY at checkout (expires 9/6/16).

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