A girl needs some Chunky Bling in her life

Have you ever heard about  

They have just the right amount of bling!  I love this Scarlet Chunky Bling Ring! They carry fun line of interchangeable beaded watches and interchangeable charm necklaces.  I love large, chunky face watches! They have them and in fun colors!  Just recently I was given a fun, chunky chain to wear.  I'm not someone who usually wears necklaces.  Now that I've seen the  interchangeable charm necklaces  I think I'm ready to add more to my collection!  The interchangeable charm necklaces allows you to keep your same chain but switch out the charms!  
Have you ever participated in an online jewelry party?  Well get ready because I'm going to host one real soon! What a great way to connect with family and friends who do not live near you!  So tell me this, are you ready for some chunky jewelry???? 

I wrote this blog post in exchange for a FREE Swarovski Crystal Ring of my choice including shipping. I can't wait to get it!!!  I'll report back once I do!


Soft Pretzel Recipe & Tropical Traditions Review

 Have you ever heard of Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil?  I had never heard of it until I saw Tropical Traditions products on another blog. This coconut oil can be used to replace unhealthy oils used in cooking.   At first I was afraid that the oil would cause the food to have a coconut taste.  This was not the case for me when I used it in my Anna Banana bread, Sweet Peanut Butter Bread and soft pretzel recipes.  The oil does have a clean, fresh, very light coconut smell and taste. The taste and  smell didn't carry over into the food I made. No one else seemed to notice either. Click, Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil, to learn more about the benefits of this oil.  You can also watch the very informative video, click here, “How We Discovered Virgin Coconut Oil - An Interview with Brian Shilhavy, CEO Tropical Traditions.
 I found out too, that the oil can be used as a skin softener and to help reduce the appearance of scars.   I do agree on it as a skin softener.  We had the oil on our hands to grease the bowl for our dough. I rubbed it into my hands and several hours later and many washing they are still soft but not greasy. I have a few more recipes that I will be posting using the oil!
Now on to the recipe!  I've always wanted to make homemade pretzels.  I was inspired by a recipe on the Tropical Traditions page.

Emily and I decide to make these pretzels for her Girl Scout troop.  Let me tell you friends, this was a super fun project! We had a lot of fun in the kitchen making these!  I hope that you try it, too!  We doubled the recipe.  I don't usually do this with a first time recipe but I needed quite a few for Girl Scouts and of course some for home! Do you already make pretzels??  If you have a different recipe please share!

Soft Pretzels
Preparation Time: 1 hour
 Pour water into the bowl of a standing mixer and stir in sugar and salt until dissolved. Sprinkle the yeast on top but do not stir. Allow to proof for 5-10 minutes, until the yeast begins to foam.

Add the flour and coconut oil to the yeast mixture. Using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Turn the speed up and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, around 4 to 5 minutes. 
 Remove dough from the bowl. Oil the bowl with coconut oil and place ball of dough back in. Lightly grease the top of the dough ball. Cover the top of the bowl with a damp towel and let sit in a warm place for approximately 1-2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size. *We made a double batch so we divided the dough into 2 bowls to rise. From previous experience with bread I find that this works to not slow down the time the dough will need to double. 
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Stir the water and baking soda together and bring to a boil in a large pot.
Turn the dough out onto a work surface lightly oiled with extra coconut oil and divide into 10 equal pieces.We divided the dough into 12 pieces.
Roll out into pretzel shapes and place on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper and greased with coconut oil.
Place 1 pretzel at a time into the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove with a large, flat spatula and place back unto lined cookie sheets. Brush with optional egg wash if desired. 
Bake until dark golden brown in color, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and serve with melted butter, salt, cinnamon sugar and other toppings/dips of choice.
Recipe courtesy Sarah Shilhavy

Check out my Banana Bread made with the coconut oil 

                      Sweet Peanut Butter Bread

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

Check out this very interesting article, Full of Probiotics; Food Makes Fun Fuel Blog.


The View Brand Ambassador

Thanks to Mom Central I've been picked to be a Brand Ambassador for The View.  I was a huge fan of The View when Meredith Vieira and Star Jones were on the show.  My current favorite co-host is Elisabeth Hasselbeck.  I love her opinions and how strong and determined she sticks up for what she believes in.

How about you? Do you watch The View? Who are your favorite co-host??

Mom Central is running a sweepstakes where one lucky reader will receive a trip to New York City to watch the taping of The View.  It ends February 28ths.  Click here, The View Mom Central Sweepstakes, to enter to win!
I am a participant in a Mom Central campaign for ABC Daytime and will receive a tote bag or other The View branded items to facilitate my review.

Official General Hospital Brand Ambassador

This is the first week for the General Hospital Brand Ambassador post! How fun to be included in this new Mom Central program!

One of my earliest memories of General Hospital is watching it when Rick Springfield played Dr. Noah Drake! I just did a search and that was almost 30 years ago!!! Now that makes me feel really really old! It also means that I was watching that GH when I wasn't even 10 years old!! I can thank my grandma for getting me hooked on soap operas as a young kid!

Mom Central has a General Hospital Sweepstakes going on that will give one lucky winner a trip to Los Angeles to visit the set of General Hospital and have a walk-on role!!! The sweepstakes is open until February 28th.  Click, General Hospital Sweepstakes to enter!

Do you watch General Hospital?? Did you ever watch it? Leave a comment and tell me about it!! Thanks

I am a participant in a Mom Central campaign for ABC Daytime and will receive a tote bag or other General Hospital branded items to facilitate my review.

Giveaway winner of $25 Spa Salon Wish Gift Card

Congrats to Juliana! She was picked by to win the gift card! Thanks to all who participated!!!

 Win $25 Gift Card!

Free Community Coffee sample for signing up for Perks!

Be one of the first 1,000 people to sign up for Community Coffee Perks and receive a FREE 2 oz coffee sample of one of their great blends! Offer ends after 1,000 sign-ups or on Friday, February 26, 2010. Limit one sign up per person.  Click here, COMMUNITY COFFEE Facebook Perks, to get your sample and their Perks newsletter!

Giveaway winner of Katie and Kimble Winner of Moms Choice Award

Congrats to Kerrie for winning the Katie and Kimble Series!!!!

Time to get your McDonald's Shamrock Shake!

Ok friends this is my  public service announcement to let you know that the very smooth, green, minty, magically delicious (thanks Jake and Baxter for that description) shakes are making an appearance at many McD locations!

Growing up outside of the Chicagoland area, these shakes were always available around St. Patrick's Day.  Over the years I've found it difficult to find these in certain parts of the country.  Just last year I went searching for them in Southern Illinois and could not find them!  I think it was easier to find a four-leaf clover than it was to find one of these shakes.

Last night I was taking my teen to get some fries and there was a sign on the door advertising the shake! So that is what I got!!! It tasted just as good as the shake of my youth! I wasn't sure why the last part of the shake was all vanilla. I don't think they mixed it up long enough. This same thing happened to my other teen and her friends later that night at the same store.  Just so you know it looks better all green! LOL  

This little shake gave me almost 600 tasty calories! Let's just say it was worth it but I won't be stopping in to get a daily fix! I will, however, pledge to go drink another one on St. Patrick's Day!!!

*Thanks McDonald's for reading my blog post and offering me a coupon for another shake! They are also sending me some for a giveaway! I'll let you know when I post that!
U rock- That is ShamROCK!


Happy National Banana Bread featuring Anna Banana Bread

Anna Banana Bread

2 eggs
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. melted butter or Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil
1 tsp vanilla
4 tsp milk
1 cup ripen and smashed bananas

MIX all together and then add

2 c. flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp b. soda
1 pinch salt

Blend until moist
This is when you can fold in extras. Try cranberry, chocolate chips, nuts, etc.

Bake 350 for 45min - 1hr. Check at 45 min and if toothpick is almost clean when sticking in center then it is done.

Toppings- You can also add brown sugar, nuts and or chocolate chips on the top. They bake down into the bread. The sugar gives a yummy crust. Add this before baking!

Check out the History of Banana Bread!
Check out Soft Pretzels made with the coconut oil!


Guest Chef Karen cooks up Potato Leek Gratin from Williams-Sonoma

 My foodie friend, Karen, is my guest chef today!  She cooks up some tasty recipes! You will see more of her post soon!  This recipe comes from one that she found on the Williams-Sonoma website.   This Potato Leek Gratin is make with two kinds of cheeses. Enjoy!

Potato Leek Gratin


  • 5 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 4 lb. leeks, white and light green portions, rinsed well, cut into 1/4-inch rings
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 6 oz. Gruyère cheese, grated
  • 3 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
  • 3 lb. russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 3 Tbs. minced fresh chives


In a 12-inch nonstick fry pan over medium heat, melt 4 Tbs. of the butter. Add the leeks and salt, stirring to coat the leeks with the butter. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leeks are tender, about 20 minutes. Add the thyme, nutmeg, pepper and cream and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Wipe out the pan and grease with the remaining 1 Tbs. butter.

Preheat an oven to 400ºF.

In a bowl, combine the Gruyère and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses. Layer one-third of the potatoes in the fry pan and spread one-third of the leek mixture on top. Sprinkle with one-third of the cheeses, then 1 Tbs. of the chives. Repeat the layering 2 more times, reserving 1 Tbs. of the chives.

Cover the pan, transfer to the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the lid and continue baking until the potatoes are tender and the crust is golden brown, about 30 minutes more. Sprinkle the remaining 1 Tbs. chives on top. Let the gratin stand for 15 minutes before serving. Serves 8 to 10.

Check out French Onion Pork roast to serve with this dish!

Win a Cozy for Kids by St. Eve Kids *Giveaway* ENDED

 St. Eve Kids has the cutest Cozy for little ones! Their slogan is "Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice!" Their cozies are sweet enough  to send your little one off to sweet dreams. The cozy is warm and snuggly.  It is like a long blanket with sleeves.  I love the feel of this more than the TV versions.  I really wish came in adult sizes!!!! The softness and durability is worth the $20!  This is a super fun blanket to take on car trips and sleepovers. The size of the giveaway cozy should fit most kids 12 and under.  My daughter is 11 and it fit her!

Go check out and enter to win a year's supply of pajamas, too!
The giveway is for one super sweet pink Cozy 
Leave a separate entry for each comment.  US only.
To Enter: Tell me who you would give this cozy to and leave your email address so you can be contacted if you win.

EXTRA Bonus * Go enter my Tropical Traditions giveaway for 5 extra entries! 

Bonus entries

1) Follow St.Eves on Twitter 1 entry

2)Follow me, susieqtpies on twitter 1 entry

4)Fan my blog Scraps of Life on Facebook (right side bar) 1 entry

5)Follow my blog with Google Friend Connect and Networked blogs (right side of blog) 1 entry each follow

6) Tweet the giveaway. 2 entries per tweet " Enter to win a super sweet Cozy by St. Eve Kids @susieqtpies Scraps of Life "

7) Blog the giveaway -5 entries

8) Put the giveaway on another giveaways site-5 entries

9) Put my button (left side of blog) on your blog 5 entries

ENDS March 2, 2010

*This giveaway was part of a TwitterMoms promotion. I was given a cozy to review.  The review opinions are mine.


4 Book Giveaway Winners

The first winner never responded so I picked a new winner,ejbrda you won The Happiness Project.

The three winners of Feddie Girl are theladya, Shelly and Cheryl F for winning!


Happy Pancake Day!

Happy Pancake Day with a tasty recipe by Gooseberry Patch. Pancakes are great for any meal and my kids love them, especially when the special recipe by their Papa!
Thanks to Gooseberry Patch for posting on Facebook that today is International Pancake Day! Pancakes or waffles are usually the food of choice when my girls have a sleepover! I offer plain or chocolate chip. Guess which variety gets made? If you said chocolate chip then, yes, you are correct! 
My dear Father-in-law is the King of Pancakes! It is a family tradition to have at least one breakfast when we go visit.  His pancakes are plain, raspberry or blueberry. The last time we were home, he threw a twist and made some blackberry pancakes!  What truly makes him the King of Pancakes is that he makes shapes for the kids!  Dinosaur shapes have been the ruling shape since his boys were little. This last trip home he was making pigs and unicorns for the youngest grand-daughters. What is the world coming to these days?
Get-Togethers with Gooseberry Patch Cookbook: Food to Bring Family & Friends to the Table

Chocolate Chip Pancakes
 Get-Togethers with Gooseberry Patch cookbook
(I do not own this book! I really need it though.  This recipe was taken from Gooseberry Patch's Facebook page! Thanks)

1 c. milk
2 eggs, beaten
2 c. buttermilk biscuit baking mix
1/4 t. cinnamon
1/2 c. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Garnish: frozen whipped topping, thawed, and mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Combine milk, eggs, biscuit mix and cinnamon, stirring until moistened. Fold in chocolate chips, being sure not to over blend. Drop by 1/4 cupfuls onto a hot, greased griddle; flip over when bubbles appear around edges. Cook each side until lightly golden. Top with a dollop of whipped topping and chocolate chips, if desired. Makes 12 to 16 pancakes.

You'll find another FREE recipe from Get-Togethers with Gooseberry Patch cookbook (and can take a peek inside!) when you click this link:
SusieQTpies Cafe


Congrats to Pennywise for their first Giveaway with McCafe Fraps

Congrats to Pennywise for their first giveaway! No better way to celebrate a giveaway than with coffee! Click the above button to go the the blog and enter!

{Valentine Treats} Old Fashioned Candy Apples

WOW! Thanks to guest chef Lynda for sharing this yummy Candy Apple recipe! I personally prefer the carmel-pull-out-your-fillings apple but my hubby loves candy apples! I've never made them but with this easy recipe I hope to make him some, soon. This would make some perfect Valentine treats, too.

If you are looking for a delicious, mouth-watering candy apple recipe? Try this one!

Old-Fashioned Red Candy Apples


8 medium sized apples
8 wooden sticks
3 cups white sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/4 teaspoon red food coloring (optional)


Wash and dry the apples. Remove any stems or leaves and insert a wooden stick into the end of each apple. Set apples aside.

Heat and stir sugar, corn syrup and water in a saucepan until sugar has dissolved. Boil until the syrup reaches 300 degrees on a candy thermometer, or until a little syrup dropped into cold water separates into breakable threads.

Remove from heat and stir in cinnamon and food coloring, if using.

Dip one apple completely in the syrup and swirl it around a little with the stick to coat. Hold the apple above the saucepan to drain off excess. Place apple, with the stick facing up, on a well greased pan.

Repeat with remaining apples. If syrup thickens or cools too much, simply reheat briefly before proceeding. Let cool completely before serving.

Find Lynda on Twitter  and  Thanks Lynda!

Zippy Pizza Fondue by Gooseberry Patch

Thanks to Gooseberry Patch, I found this post on their Facebook page!!!  Thanks for sharing such yummy recipes with us from your cookbooks!  Click the cookbook to find out more! Here is what they have to say about this recipe: 

Whether you're watching the Olympics or the big race on Sunday, this party-pleasing recipe is sure to be a hit! Turn this yummy recipe into a meal by adding a pound of browned ground beef or Italian sausage. Add warm bread sticks for dipping and a spinach's a delicious supper!

Zippy Pizza Fondue

28-oz. jar spaghetti sauce
16-oz. pkg. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. dried oregano
2 T. dried parsley
1 T. garlic powder
1 t. dried, minced onion
1 loaf Italian bread, cut into bite-size cubes

Combine all ingredients except bread in a slow cooker; mix well. Cover and cook on low setting for 2 hours, until warmed through and cheese is melted; stir. Serve with bread for dipping. Makes 10 servings.

You can purchase this cookbook anytime online by following this link:


Oooey Gooey Onion Cheese Bread with Guest Chef Diane

If you need a quick and easy bread recipe to go with any meal, this one is it! This onion cheese bread is always a hit and you will impress your guests with this recipe.
Thanks to my dear friend, Diane, I have a guest chef for today and a new recipe to share! She posted something about onion bread on Facebook.  I wanted to know more! She sent me pictures and the recipe!  I knew it would be a huge hit with my family. We love onions. We ate half the loaf before sitting down to dinner.

Onion Bread by Diane

1 loaf of French Bread
1 and 1/2 sticks of butter
1 med. to large onion, sliced paper thin
8oz. swiss OR mozzarella (sliced thin and in one inch squares)
1 1/2 tsp. poppy seeds
1/2 tsp. dry mustard

Score bread diagonally (almost to the bottom),on top of a large piece of aluminum foil, to form a diamond pattern in bread. 
Saute onion in butter until almost transparent. Add poppy seeds and mustard. Cook another 3 minutes. Stuff Cheese slices into every little slit in the bread. Drizzle the hot onion mixture over top. Wrap in foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Unwrap slightly and bake another 5 to 10 minutes to crisp...serve and love!

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