The Dwelling Tree

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Buffalo Chicken Wrap and Mango Mint Iced Tea Recipe

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 I just made one of my all time favorite meal combinations. Mango Mint Iced Tea and Buffalo Chicken Wraps with Mexican Rice. Let me continue to hum a tune to myself and bask in the sunlight on our porch....

My all-time favorite iced tea is mango. I just love it. If I am ever at a restaurant and have the opportunity to have a cup, I am all in. Today I decided to try a home brew. At a fraction of the cost, I was able to serve myself a delightful cup of mango iced tea, and even throw in some fresh mint from our garden. It was a delight. Why don't I do this more often?

These buffalo chicken wraps are just right for a quick and easy meal solution. I've been meaning to make these for a long time. I have a deep affection for anything buffalo chicken. It takes me back to my college days when I would spend afternoons at happy hours devouring chicken wings and not really worrying about my waist line. 

I used 100 count Lipton tea bags. They make a delicious batch of iced tea at a great price. I cannot wait to try other flavor combinations (thinking sweet tea or blackberry next time!). I picked up my tea and ingredients at Walmart last night while I had a few minutes to myself. I'm sure people thought I was nuts taking pictures of tea. Hey, what bloggers do to develop our stories!

I love these wraps because they are so easy! With only a few ingredients, these wraps are perfect to pack for lunch or make for a quick dinner. I paired my wraps with Knorr's Mexican rice and added some fresh cilantro on top. Yummy, delicious, and a family favorite. They are lovely too with the deep purple from cabbage and vibrant orange from carrot. Crunchy, fresh, crispy, and savory. 

Even my daughter loved dinner! I made her chicken less spicy. She was all about it.

Buffalo Chicken Wraps 
Adapted from Weary Chef
Serves 4

1 1/2 pounds chicken nuggets (I used all natural and whole wheat breaded)
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp hot sauce of choice
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp garlic powder
big pinch kosher salt! 
4 large tortillas
Ranch or blue cheese dressing
1 cup shredded purple cabbage
1/2 cup shredded carrots
4 tbsp shredded cheddar cheese

1. Cook chicken nuggets in oven as directed. 
2. In a medium to large bowl, combine olive oil, hot sauce, paprika, garlic powder, and salt. Toss chicken in mixture and coat evenly. Set aside. 
3. Lay out a tortilla flat. Spread ranch or blue cheese evenly as desired, leaving about 1 inch room around edges. 
4. Sprinkle cheese, carrots, and cabbage on tortilla. 
5. Arrange chicken along center of tortilla. Wrap tightly and cut in half. 

Mango Mint Iced Tea
Makes about 1 quart iced tea

2 cups frozen or fresh mango
3/4 cup honey
Lipton Black Tea Bags

1. Boil water. Place 6 tea bags at the bottom of a heat proof pitcher. Pour boiling water over tea bags and let steep 6 minutes. Remove tea bags. Add 3 cups of ice and stir to dissolve ice. 

2. Take mango and honey and place in food processor or blender. Puree until liquid.  

3. Pour mango puree over iced tea and stir well. Add 5-7 fresh mint leaves to tea. Garnish with mint leaves. 


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Let's Be Friends #79 is now live! Come link up!

Welcome to the Let's Be Friends Blog Hop!

A blog hop is a set time frame for current or aspiring bloggers to find new blogs and quality content. It is a great way to make new friends and find inspiration! It is also a fabulous way to promote your own blog and posts.

Dear Friends,

What a day to celebrate! This is the 79th week of the Let's Be Friends blog hop! Thanks for joining us on this special day. Chelsee and Tiffany are extremely delighted to see the way this hop has grown and love to see your faces each week! 

Join us every Tuesday at 7am (MST). This blog hop focuses on content. LINK UP YOUR FAVORITE POST from last week in this fun content-sharing blog hop! I love the idea of blog hopping, but I love the idea of reading posts and quality content on new blogs I've never been to even more. Instead of simply linking up your blog button, you are now able to link up your favorite post you recently wrote. Have a delicious recipe to share, DIY tutorial, or heartfelt post? Share it with us! All hosts and co-hosts put up some unique and fun content from the past week. Make sure to check them out. P.S.- you may still link up your blog button and blog name, but it is encouraged to link up your favorite post instead. You will get more page views and interest if you do so! Some of the most successful blog hops I have participate in focus on content rather than just exchanging follows. You never know who will become a loyal follower or pin that delicious new recipe you posted!

The BEST part of this blog hop? Each week there will be a WINNER! That's right, each week we will choose one lucky blog to feature from the previous week's hop. This hop receives thousands of page views every week, so your blog will have the chance to be center stage for free. You must follow all the hosts and co-hosts in order to win. Only those who link up a specific post are eligible to be featured! *You must follow all the hosts and co-hosts in order to win.

The last exciting change is that the co-host spots will now be available to all sponsors of  The Dwelling Tree or Southern Beauty Guide. If you are interested in co-hosting the blog hop, email Tiffany or Chelsee about sponsorship opportunities and how to co-host the weekly hop!

There are a couple of great giveaways going on right now at Southern Beauty Guide and The Dwelling Tree. Go check them out! :)

Let's Be Friend's Blog Hop Guidelines
1. Link up your favorite post from your week.
2. Follow your hosts and co-hosts.
3. Grab the button and post it on your blog so we can share the love.
4. Visit 3 other blogs and follow them along!
5. Tweet about this blog hop, using #letsbefriends
6. Pin the button on pinterest so we can spread the news! 

***Once a week, one blog will be chosen to be the featured blogger from the previous blog hop. 

Meet your hosts: 

The Dwelling Tree: Blog, Bloglovin'

Southern Beauty Guide: Blog, Bloglovin'


Jillian @ Hi! It's Jilly

***This weeks featured post from last week's hop:

Hi everyone! This is Chelsee today. Thank you all once again for continually linking up at our blog hop. It is such a fun time and I am so impressed each week with all the amazing posts. Please continue to link up an actual post instead of your blog. We want to keep reading your content and it makes it more fun to pick a winner! 

... onto the winner! 

Ugh. Picking a winner gets harder each week. I find myself drawn to the most memorizing photos that you are all linking up. Being that this is the season that many get married, including one of my bloggy besties Justine that I host the Pretty Little Beauty Swap for the past year. I find guides and ideas on how to better prepare of the day to be very intriguing. Not only do I find these guides to be great for those getting married, but also I find it helpful for those attending weddings. This is especially so when you have my luck and find that something always happens. 

When I saw Ange's post on her idea of the perfect Wedding Day Emergency Kit I knew it was one that I had to share with all of you. I found that her list compiled some of the best products to have handy on a wedding day. She even had a few that had not even crossed my mind that I now see as a necessity. I everyone will benefit from this emergency kit. I can truly see many situations that could arise that you would benefit from having this kit on hand. If you have any upcoming events I highly suggest you use Ange's list to compile your own emergency kit. Ange also is an amazing blogger that has tons of product reviews up each week. If you are into beauty then I highly suggest that you head over and check out her blog.  

Now, all of you, have an amazing week and keep doing what you do so well. You all make such an impact on us. Thank you for joining our blog hop! 

Keep posting awesome content! You make it so fun for us to read all your posts! If you can, please link up a specific post. It makes it easier for us to come and visit! 

*Remember YOU can be next weeks winner! :)

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In a month I will be 30...

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter. Mark Twain
My twenties flew by. Riddled by the typical disasters of many some twenty-somethings, I've also experienced a few life changing situations. I was married and divorced by age 24, something I never imagined would happen to me. I moved to a new state, virtually alone, to encounter one of the most lonely trials of my life. I questioned why I believed in God and if I could continue to believe in Jesus. I made really dumb mistakes. I was stubborn and didn't like receiving help. I did a lot of soul-searching, cried many nights in my closet, and stared into the stars on my tiny patio wondering what could possibly be around the corner of my seemingly train-wrecked life.

I volunteered to make up for losses. I tried running to relieve stress. I smoked cigarettes to stave off hunger and keep me feeling full of energy. I was once vegan and later Paleo. I accomplished 90 hours of hot yoga in sixty days, not skipping a day. I was a total mess. I was grasping at anything to make me feel better or feel full. I was lonely. And only 24. I never told anyone how much my heart ached.

Now I sit here, typing away, as I rapidly approach thirty years. Where did thirty years go? I have since gotten remarried and have had a child. I have been able to look back upon my messes and see the mistakes I have made, as well as lessons learned. I have learned that grace is real. I have learned to have gratitude for my journey, for it made me cling to my faith and become who I am. I have made real friends and have found a loving church family. 

I don't feel like a thirty year old. I wonder if I will ever feel my age. Is there an age we all hold on to?

Sometimes I look at Lillian and I think, "when did this moment happen? When was the exact moment my heart fell so deeply in love with this little person who now fills most of my time and energy." Just three years ago I had her. Where did time go?

The other night I was gazing at my husband. I could see a few more years on him. I loved it. The few grey strands that now salt his hair, and a couple creases around his eyes that appear when he smiles- more profound than the day I met him. I see it in my face, too. A little fatigue from less sleep, and a few more stretch marks around my thighs. 

My life has already marked me abundantly. I've got scars on my elbows from my childhood, scars from my teen years and dreadful acne, and now scars from childbirth. I've got the sweetest memories from climbing over school yard fences at funny hours, trying on caked-on makeup with friends, and holding my baby for the first time. 

I am ready for my thirties. 

I have finally stopped needing to wear makeup to the gym. I buy comfortable underwear now. I can usually let things go quicker and have less regrets. I worry less. I wear what I know looks good on me and not what is in style. I finally get along with my parents. I am more comfortable with myself now than ever. I am a better friend. 

Aging is scary but definitely awesome in many ways. I care less about dumb stuff that consumed my mind in my early twenties (do I look too hipster?), and more about things that matter, because honestly, I don't care as much what I look like. 

Not sure if that is a good or bad thing for those around me, but I will take it. 

And maybe that is my favorite thing of all about elderly people. They stop caring as much about the little things (did I hear a fart?), they let it go. But they are usually up for a nice glass of wine and a good conversation about something meaningful. 

See you soon, thirty years!