Today I started with one pound of beef cubes out of which I wanted to make a stew.  This beef stew was supposed to be “scaled” down somewhat for just the two of us.  However, we wound up with enough for second meal.  I feel good about that for two reasons, one is that I don’t have to cook tomorrow, and I used up a lot of things waiting to be used in my refrigerator.  I also didn’t use a recipe.  I looked into my closet (at spices and such) and into the refrigerator for what we had on hand, and away I went to create dinner.  I want to call this stew “whatever you have in your refrigerator to use up beef stew” but the name is just way too long.  Fridge Leftovers Beef Stew?  Use it Up Now Beef Stew… well, you get the idea.  This stew isn’t going to be hurt by a little less peppers and maybe some broccoli, or green beans etc.  If you have leftover cooked vegetables, add them to stew about 10 minutes before it’s done.  Stir them in, put the lid back on and they should heat up fine. 

And if you haven’t already guessed, we are again using the cast iron dutch oven on the stovetop.  I use this pot because it’s just plain easy, the dinner is cooked super fast and it cleans up easily. I just can’t see a downside right now.

stew ingredients

First, I cut all my ingredients (onions, peppers, garlic, celery) which I specifically chose simply by what I had in my refrigerator and wanted to use in this stew. However these are all things that are going to give that great flavor you want in your stew

Then, I mixed the flour, minced garlic, minced union, black pepper and thyme. 

I dissolved the bouillon cubes in the cup of water, as well as having the second cup of water and the other ingredients ready to go.

I sautéd the onions, garlic and celery in olive oil in the dutch oven, on the stove top. Once they are done, remove them from the pot and set them aside.  I turned up the heat on the pot, put in additional oil and waited till I thought it was hot enough to sear the meat.  I dredged the meat in the flour mixture (made earlier) and then put it into the hot pan. You have to watch this and stir as your goal is just to brown the meat.

stew ingredients

 Once your meat is browned, the rest comes very fast.  I put in the dissolved bouillon and water and stirred. The potatoes on top of the meat, then the cooked onions, peppers and celery, the red pepper flakes and the bay leaves.

remainder of the stew ingredients

 

finished stewLastly I added the worcestershire sauce on top of it all and closed the lid and moved the heat down to low. 

You need to move the heat down to low!

I cooked mine for 45 minutes, took off the top and stirred the contents. 

It was perfectly done. Please remember to remove the bay leaves before you serve the stew!

It was a nice hearty, thick stew, and again it was delicious.   I served biscuits with this for a hearty Saturday meal. 



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Now that the days are getting shorter and there is a morning chill in the air – there is more of a demand for that perfect cup of coffee ~  not only help wake you up, but to get your day started right.  In our house, hubby is the coffee king.  He loves his coffee – actually morning, noon or night! 

Eight O’Clock coffee has been around since I was a child – once sold only in one particular grocery store, where you (even way back then) could grind the beans yourself, or have the cashier do it for you.  FRESH, FAST and DELICIOUS  — both then and now – it’s one brand that has made the transition throughout the years!

Today you can enter to win some of your own.  But even if you don’t win….. give it a try – you won’t be disappointed!

Welcome to the Eight O’Clock Coffee Prize Pack Giveaway

One luck winner will win an Eight O’Clock Coffee Original 12 oz bag, a Columbian 11 oz bag and an Eight O’Clock Coffee Travel Mug

Hosted by: Baby Costcutters Co-host: Linda’s Angels

Ends Oct 11th at 11:59pm est. Open to the US Only

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Disclosure: I received no compensation for this publication. My opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. It’s Annoying is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment



 

This is a great start on anyone’s Christmas Shopping list — if their list includes children. You just cannot ignore a wonderfully crafted and made toy. These toys qualify! So please enter today!

Schylling Toy Giveaway
4 Prizes, 1 Winner!
 
 
 
One winner will receive four fabulous prizes from Schylling Toys! 
Open to US only, 18 or older. 
All entries will be verified.
 
 

 Schylling was founded in 1975 by Jack Schylling, a recent Harvard grad who felt he wasn’t cut out for office work. He began selling toys as a street vendor at Quincy Market, and grew Schylling into a 60-person company that includes two of his brothers, David (the chief executive) and Tom (the chief financial officer)

 
You can see the original review here: Schylling Toy Review
 
 
 

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Although I had heard the word wonky used before, I didn’t really think it was an actual word… till I looked it up.  And yes, it is a word.  Sadly, it means crooked, off-center, askew, unsteady, and shaky.  It’s probably the last word you want to hear from your eye doctor. 

As background, I could never see well.  My parents didn’t believe any of the eye screenings from school saying that I needed glasses.  So I did the best I could without really seeing anything clearly.  I sat in the front of the class and I listened intently because there was no way I could see anything that was going on.  When you know nothing more, having never seen clearly – you never have the experience of knowing how bad your sight really is.  You just go with the flow, accept the inevitable, and live with it.  As a child, I adapted the best I could.  Lucky for me at 7 years of age, my uncle took me to an eye doctor and I got my first pair of light blue, cat eye shaped glasses.  My world suddenly turned so much clearer.  I  was amazed — there is just other adequate description. 

Fast forward to 2002, I am wearing both contacts and glasses to see.  I have low vision.  My contacts are expensive and special order and if I tear one, it can take up to 6 weeks to get a new one.  It’s a long process to get a pair that works – because of the high Rx and the 3 astigmatisms in my right eye.  Yet I am so thankful they can make them.  Without them I wear coke bottle type glasses and see, but not nearly 20/20.  My eyes are -12.00 each and to put that in perspective, -7.50 without correction is legally blind.  So yes, when I have my contacts and glasses off – I am more than legally blind.  All I see without correction is foggy bunches of colors.  I cannot see the big “E” on the eye chart,  and I can’t even see enough to find my glasses.  And without seeing, I cannot do many of the things regular people take for granted, like drive a car, read a book, watch tv, or even dial the phone. 

So….  I had lasik surgery.  I was a good candidate for the treatment.  My eyes would not be guaranteed, and the risks were higher for me because of the high Rx.  It was still a  miracle.  I cried on the way home because I could see.  I could NEVER see without correction before in my life and now after a fairly painless and quick surgery, I could.  It was definately worth the cost.

But now it’s 2012 and 10 years have passed.  I have been wearing reading glasses for the last few, but recently found that my eyes don’t want to see far or near clearly.  I cannot read the signs at the fast food restaurant and I cannot read the computer or any paperwork without my reading glasses and even then it’s hard.  And the reason ~  my eyes went wonky! 

For me specifically,  it means that the eye that could see far after the lasix surgery – now can’t and it cannot help the reading eye.  The reading eye has gotten farsighted but not enough to help the eye that sees far.  If that’s a bit confusing, it was to me too…. but basically my eyes have reversed roles and taken ones they cannot succeed in performing.  Both of them have decided to be farsighted – which my brain cannot deal with after 47 previous years of nearsightedness.  And it’s crazy that they did that…. and scary.  I am going to try some progressive lens glasses (which I will  be wearing all the time) that should help – or I can get contacts and glasses again, or 2 pairs of glasses that I would keep needing to change.  There is no easy solution. 

For most people, the lasik surgery comes with a guarantee  to fix your vision for life.  That means you can have the surgery again, if necessary, to fix any issues you have as the years go by for free  ~~ but my eyes were over the maximum when I had my surgery and were never guaranteed.  But honestly, I don’t think there is anything that can fix wonky

 

We wanted to do something a little different this year, and have decided to throw a True Blood inspired giveaway, The Fantastic Vampire-ific True Blood Halloween Giveaway. There will be three prizes, three winners (1 prize per winner).

One of our favorite shows is True Blood. If you have not seen, it is a funny, sexy, and dark humored show, with lots of twists and turns. Warning: The show is addicting!!

Is it just me… or does it seem like Halloween is approaching way too fast this year?  Do you believe Vampires exist?  Vampires really have made in into the mainstream  considering all the novels, movies, TV shows and other ways they’ve been portrayed.  From evil to good and everything in between.  Hope you will enter if you are into the Vampire frenzy – and better than that I hope you win!

Thank you My Little Goober & Sister’s Savings Cents for this giveaway!

Another big thanks to our sponsor’s:

Savior Cents, Money Saving Lisa, Tracers Coupon Affair, Pellerini Proclaims, Ditta’s Gifts and Savings, Linda’s Angels, Mamal Diane ~ keeping it simple, Food N Service, Five Dollar Shake, Spend With Pennies, Baubles n Bits, Sweet Pea Savings and Freetail Therapy.

Please enter the Rafflecopter below. Remember the more entries you get the better the odds of winning!!

Good Luck!!

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**Disclaimer: Giveaway runs 9/15/12 12:00 AM EST to 9/30/12 at midnight. Open to residents of the US only. Prizes cannot be shipped to PO Boxes. Winners must provide a valid physical shipping address. Winner will be selected at random using Rafflecopter.com and be notified by email. The winner will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected. Please note, that this and participating blogs are not responsible for sponsors that do not fulfill their prizes. The owner of this blog & and any sponsors reserve the right to change the terms, conditions, and notices of contests/giveaways offered here at any time without notice. Sponsors may change/switch out the prizes due to quantity on hand. For this particular giveaway, if the item is no longer available the winner will receive the cash value. All contests/giveaways are open to all people over the age of 18. This website does not allow immediate family members to enter the giveaways.Your entries will be verified in this giveaway. If you unlike the pages immediately after entering the giveaway or before the giveaway is over and you are picked as the winner, if we cannot verify that you still LIKE the page or have completed the mandatory entries you will be disqualified. No purchase is necessary to enter. The odds of winning are based on the number of entries received. This promotion is no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ and is Facebook-compliant. By providing your information in this form, you are providing your information to me and me alone. I do not share or sell information and will use any information only for the purpose of contacting the winner.
 

Here is another “fun” giveaway for my readers and friends ~  Not only do you have a chance to win some great Probar Fruition, but also some nice jewelry!

Probar is giving away a 7-8 Probar Fruition Pack and  Wonderful Things In Life will giveaway a pair of pink pearl earrings & a pair of red stud earrings.  I don’t know about you, but I really like both nutritious snacks and earrings!

This giveaway will starts today….  September 11  and ends on October 2, 2012. 

EASY Rafflecopter entry.  Enter today!


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Disclaimer: Its Annoying is not supplying this prize, and is not responsible to replace if the items are lost or damaged once it’s shipped.

 

 MY SECOND MILESTONE ACCOMPLISHED !  facebook 2500 fans and likes badge for its-annoying

 

What my readers might not realize is that each and every step of having a blog and progressing into the blogger community has its up and downs, triumphs and failures.  But, behind all of that is (or should be) a plan.   I am happy to report I have made it to the second step in my personal plan.  I now have over 2500 Facebook likes – and I am seriously excited by that!  So to celebrate this second milestone and to thank those who have liked my blog….  

 

I have decided to give away another $25.00 Amazon.com Gift Card.

Amazon.com seems to be the most diverse shopping venue and it has just about anything your heart desires, from books, tapes and DVD’s to clothing, kitchen goodies and even tools. If you can’t find it there… it might not exist (smile). 

If someone asked me what I would want – I would chose to reserve a copy of this book in the audio version unabridged. It’s titled Delusion In Death and the latest in the “In Death” series.  My husband and I both love this series.  The characters come alive for us – and while we know it’s a stretch sometimes when you are writing about the future, we enjoy the authors’  (JD Robb  ~ aka Nora Roberts) portrayal of the characters personalities, interactions and even their altercations!

So here’s a way for you to get anything you want (up to $25.00) regular or sale priced  … from school supplies to clothing, and if you spend it all at one time, you might also qualify for free Amazon.com shipping.

The giveaway will start on September 7, 2012 and run through September 17, 2012
US and Canada, 18+ as long as you can use the card, you are welcome to enter.

*Actual gift card and not a code. I will be mailing the gift card to the winner once the giveaway is over. 
  This is not a sponsored post, and I am personally suppyling the gift card.

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