Sunday, December 30, 2007

My New Years Prayer

I found this prayer on a website that I frequent often and thought it was the perfect prayer for me to start the New Year with. I will probably need to say it on a daily basis, so I think I will print it off and post it around my house. I think its really a wonderful prayer and just thought I would share.


Lord,
I lay all my responsibilities at Your feet. I am now yielding my heart, mind and strength to your awesome power and glory. I desperately need You.
Open my eyes, ears, heart and soul so that I'm not too busy to hear You. Teach me to walk, live and be in the center of Your will for my life. Use me as a blessing in the lives of my children, dear Lord.
Forgive me for my past mistakes, which can be better described as sins. I've been impatient, short tempered, self-righteous and it has made me a difficult woman to love and live with. Lord, starting today, fill me with the fruit of the Spirit: patience, kindness, humility, and gentleness.
Make me a woman who is not easily angered; guard me from being rude or selfish. Fill me with the strength to endure all things necessary. Your perfect love never fails. I praise you, and I thank you for saving me.
Amen.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

A Sweet Christmas and New Years Resolutions!!

The holidays would just not be complete without yummy Peanut Brittle. I try and make it every year. This year it took me a few trys to get it right. I figured out I was using the wrong recipe. That's what you get when you have a unorganized pile of recipes. So now that I have the correct recipe, I finally got it right. Its very easy and very yummy. Give it a try Best Peanut Brittle


1 cup of white sugar

1/2 cup of light corn syrup

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1 cup favorite nuts (peanuts, cashews, pecans ect....)

2 tablespoons butter (softened)

1 teaspoon baking soda

Spray your cookie sheet and then set aside. In a large saucepan over medium heat, bring to a boil sugar, corn syrup, salt and water. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Stir in nuts. Set candy thermometer in place and continue to cook. Stir frequently until temperature reaches 300 degrees F (150 degree C). Remove from heat and immediately stir in butter and baking soda. Pour at once on to cookie sheet and spread evenly over sheet to a thin layer. It will not cover entire cookie sheet. Let set and cool and then crack into small pieces. Enjoy!!!


Our Christmas was very fun this year. It started out at 2:00 a.m. on Christmas morning. Friends came over to play games for Christmas Eve and when we get started playing, we just do not know when to quit. My DD wanted us to go to bed so that Santa would come and I explained to her that Santa does not care if the adults stay up, its the children that must go to bed (wink, wink). So dazed and confused, she went to bed. Well she woke up several times asking if Santa was there yet and upset cause she was afraid he would not come as long as we were awake. Well after getting her to go back to bed, I decided we better get the gifts under the tree before she decides he is not coming and get really upset. On the third trip out, she saw that Santa did finally get there and so guess what, we had to do gifts right then. So our friends decided to leave and she called her big brother and he drove over and we had our Christmas at 2:30 in the morning. We were all pretty happy about that, cause that meant getting to sleep in the next morning. It was a fun few hours. Then we were putting the Turkey in the oven and off to bed we all went. After only about 5 hours of sleep, I was up preparing broccoli and rice casserole and Macaroni and Cheese casserole. We left our house around 11:00 and head over to my Mothers house where we had the most wonderful Christmas Day. We ate, exchanged gifts and played Chicken Foot till late in the evening. It was such a fun and relaxing day.

I wanted to share a couple more of my thrift store finds this past 2 weeks. I for some reason have fallen in love with Aprons. Its really not a new love, but a love I have not thought of in a long time. I have always loved the old vintage things. One of my most favorite hobbies at one time was Antique shopping. The problem was, I never had money to buy much of it. I really still do not have a lot of money, but now I can find some of it at the thrift stores and good will. I rekindled this love through my blogging. One of my favorite blogs is http://cherryhillcottage.typepad.com/cherryhill_cottage/ After visiting her blog almost daily through the holidays, I have gotten re excited about the Vintage things again. I will never have all the gorgeous things she has in her home, but I do plan to keep a eye open for some of the things I truly adore. Aprons being one of those things. Here is one that I found recently at our local thrift store. I paid 1.50 for it. Now that's a bargain.

I just adore the colors. Very simple and inexpensive. Made to be used.


Here is the other great find I wanted to share. My DH wanted a potpourri pot for his poker room. We looked all over for one that was not so girly. No such luck. Everything had flowers. So I decided to alter one for him. We got this for 2.00. Here it is before
Below, is after I decoupaged scrapbook stickers and paper on to the pot. It turned out very cute and my DH just loved it.
II have a few New Years Resolutions. I have not done resolutions in a long time, because I usually do not keep them, so why bother to make them. Well the only problem with that attitude is, that if I do not bother to make any, than how in the world do I expect to make changes in my life, that I really do need to change. So perhaps if I make a few, then I might be able to make those changes. If not, than I am no worse off. So here goes


1. yes, the old "Loose Weight Resolution" I really do want to loose weight this year and so I am planning to start it off with joining Weight Watchers. I started dabbling with Weight Watchers a few months ago just here at home following my old books and things I had learned years ago and was doing pretty good on it. Then the holidays hit and I decided that I did not want to diet through the holidays, only because I have been dieting at the holidays for the last 4 years. So now that the holidays are over and I have gained a few extra pounds, I want to get going again, but this time I want to join and go to the meetings. I really do think it will help me to be able to weigh in each week. My scales at home are just not accurate enough and it gets really depressing and discouraging to loose and gain within the same week. Perhaps by going to the meetings, someone can help me figure out what I need to do to stop the fluctuating. I am not crazy about meetings, but I am willing to go just for the support and accountability it will have for me.


2. To get my shopping habits in control and save some money. You know the saying "She who dies with the most "Scrapbook Supplies" wins". Well I no longer want to be in that race. I have so much scrapbook and stamp supplies and it has just gotten out of control. I cannot find anything, for having too much. So I plan to stop buying so much and taking that money and saving it or putting it to better use on things I need. Now I did not say I would stop shopping. I just said I was going to stop shopping soooo much. I do plan to purchase myself a new Cricut cartridge on occasion, only when they are on sale, and I do plan to attend the conventions and Scrapbook garage sales this coming year, only because I love going. What I want to stop doing though is going to Hobby Lobby and Michael's every other week and buying paper and stickers ect... just because they are on sale at 50% off, or because I have a coupon that I just cannot let expire. That's what I have to get under control. So what if the coupon expires or the sale is over before I get there. There is always another coupon and another sale. I will wait until I need it before I buy it. That's what I want to do. Buy only what I will use at the time I purchase it. No more hording supplies.
3.Organization, Yes I do plan to get things organized once and for all. I am soooo tired of spending all of my time cleaning and organizing. I want to have more time for the fun stuff. However, I am the type personality that I cannot do the fun stuff if my life is a mess. My life being my house mostly. So I do plan to get my house organized and cleaned up. I want to start the year off right. So for the next few weeks I plan to organize. I have been doing some organizing this past year, but I am still not where I need to be to have complete happiness. So instead of saying "Out with the old, and in with the New", I plan to be saying "Out with what I don't use, and find what I do use." LOL!!!!
4. I would like to get busy on my scrapbooking, stamping and crafting. I want to actually get some pages in albums this year. I want to complete some started projects. I want to use every single stamp I own in either my scrapbooks or on cards. I want to sew and make rag dolls, rag quilts, ect.. Those are the things I love to do. I love scrapbooking, stamping, and sewing. That is what I want to focus on. So on my calender this year, I want to plan to be doing one of those things every day. Even if its only 15 minutes a day, I want to do it. I want to sell my stuff at a craft show at the end of this year too. Even if its just one craft show.
5. I want to do my Christmas shopping all year long. I plan to spend lots of time at the thrift stores, good will and antique malls. I am going to find the most perfect gifts for my family and friends. I don't want to buy gifts that they need like clothes ect... I want to find unique and unusual gifts. I want to be able to give lots of gifts at Christmas next year. I know that gift giving is not suppose to be the center of Christmas and really its not the center for me, but I love to give gifts at Christmas. Its just fun to see peoples faces light up when you give them a gift. Nothing better to me. So I am going to start early and make my list and start shopping and creating special gifts for everyone on my list.
Well I think that is the main things I want to do this coming year. These are my New Years Resolutions. I may not be able to complete them all, but I will have lots of fun trying. I am defiantly ready and looking forward to the challenge.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Shopping, Wrapping and Baking

My 3 favorite things to do during this time. Yes I am strange. I love to shop and wrap gifts. Just seeing all those packages under the tree just makes it seem so complete. Then of course no Christmas can be truly complete without yummy's on the counter top. I tried some very easy, but delicious sweets this year. I did my traditional Banana Bread and Pumpkin Bread last week, and this week I made these yummy cookies and muffins. I give the credit for the cookies to Nestle's Very Best Baking website http://www.verybestbaking.com/. They have some really great recipes listed here. For the Pecan Pie Muffins, the credit goes to http://cherryhillcottage.typepad.com/cherryhill_cottage/ I truly do love this ladies blog.
White Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup
NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Baking Cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.)
NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Premier White Morsels
Directions:PREHEAT oven to 350° F. COMBINE flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Drop by well-rounded teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheets. BAKE for 9 to 11 minutes or until centers are set. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.






Pecan Pie Muffins
1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
1- teaspoon vanilla
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. flour
1 c. pecans
Mix together 1/2 cup butter, eggs, brown sugar and vanilla. Stir by hand flour and pecans, until blended. Spoon batter in greased mini-muffin pan. Bake at 350 for approximately 20 minutes. Do not over bake.

In the Pecan Pie Muffin Recipe picture there is a black Teapot. Isn't it so cute. It is my new liquid potpourri pot. I found it and some of the treasures in the below picture this week. Its has become a holiday tradition for me to go to our town square and do some of my Christmas shopping. I find some of the best inexpensive treasures there. My family loves to receive things like this for Christmas gifts. My mother ask for a cut glass butter dish. She actually called and ask if she gave me her cut glass butter dish. The answer of course was "Yes" I felt bad that she had given me her only butter dish, but not so bad that I offered to give it back. I did tell her I would loan it to her. LOL!!! She said it was ok, that she could do without. The butter dish she gave me was for large blocks of butter. She really wanted one for the small sticks of butter. She said she would find something around the house to put butter in. Well my thought is, what holiday table is complete without a pretty cut glass butter dish. So off I went to find her one. While shopping for her a butter dish, I found some beautiful salt and pepper shakers and a cheese tray lid without a wooden bottom. I plan to put the lid on a glass dish, as soon as I find the perfect fit. I do love shopping the antique stores and thrift stores. I have other treasures to share with you, but they will have to wait till my next post. I have to get up early to go to my SIL to have my husbands family Christmas.


Jesus is the "Reason for the Season" Thank you Jesus for this time that we can be with our families and friends!!! I pray that all have a Safe and Merry Christmas. Amen...

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Perfect Fireplace!!!!

Now this is the perfect fireplace. There is no smoky smell in the house, no expense for wood, no worry of house catching on fire, no cleanup. Just put in the DVD and you have the perfect fire. It even comes with crackling sounds to make it even more cozy. I found this DVD at Bed, Bath and Beyond. I decided it would be the perfect touch to my crop weekend at my house. I had some of my friends come over on Saturday and we spent the entire day cropping. We had the best time. I finally got my vacation album finished and ready to journal. These are the last few pages I had left. I made them very simple in order to "Getter Done!!!"This was the only scrapbooking I did for the day. I was too busy making banana bread, pumpkin bread, Chocolate Chip Cake and Chocolate Chip Cheeseball. I wanted to have plenty of snacks for our crop. So I baked while they cropped. LOL!!!! It was nice having the house smell like breads baking though. Nothing better in my opinion than a house filled with baking smells and a crackling fire going. Even if it is just a DVD. It was the perfect day. We cropped until around 3:00 in the morning and decided it was time to throw in the towel. I am sure it would have happen much sooner, if I had not made all those sugary treats.



Here are the recipes for the Chocolate Chip cake and Chocolate Chip Cheeseball. This is the blogs that I stalk now for great recipes and where I found these yummy treats.

Daisy Cottage,



Cherry Hill Cottage

These ladies have the most awesome blogs for recipes and home decorating ideas. I truly enjoy reading their blogs and am now a huge fan.


Chocolate Chip Cake
1 box chocolate cake mix
1 package INSTANT chocolate pudding
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup oil
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1- 12oz bag of miniature chocolate chips
Lightly spray a bundt pan. Mix above together in a bowl. Pour into bundt pan. Bake @350 for 45-50 minutes. Cool. Sprinkle powdered sugar if desired.





Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball

1 pkg. 8oz. cream cheese

1/2 cup butter

1/4 tsp. vanilla

2 Tbs. brown sugar

3/4 cup confectioners sugar

3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

3/4 cup finely chopped pecans

Beat softened cream cheese, butter, & vanilla until creamy. Slowly add sugars until blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Place mixture onto a piece of plastic wrap and form into a ball. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Roll ball in pecans. Serve with chocolate graham crackers or 'Nilla wafers.

Just wanted to let you all know that I am feeling much better about my Son moving out. I think I have seen him more in the last few weeks than I have in the past 2 years. He calls more and comes to visit way more. He came yesterday and spent the entire afternoon and watched the football game with my DH. I cannot explain to you how much that meant to my husband and to myself. We have not had that joy in a long time with him. I miss him more than I could ever express, but I think I am going to be ok now. Just wanted you to know that!!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Never say Never

Ok, just a quick post to let you know that some DJ Hamsters in fact "BITE". Snowball is a cute little guy, but holding him was like holding a hot potato. He constantly nips your fingers and hand. He did not do that when we first brought him home. He started doing that last night. It does not hurt of course, but it was very annoying. So today I took him back to the pet store and the guy was very shocked to hear that he was doing that. I told him that not only does he bite, but he never sleeps. He was on the wheel in his cage from sun up to sun down. Very hyper little guy. He also hogged up a entire bowl of food. Most of it in his mouth. So he let us exchange him for a different hamster. Funny thing was that when he put him back in the cage, he was beating everyone else up. So I do believe he was just a tad bit aggressive. So this time we went with one that looked like Hank. DD wanted one exactly like Hank and so she did. She named this one Henry. The only difference that I can see is that Hank is darker in color than Henry. Lets hope they stay that way. Otherwise we just want know who is who if their fur changes. Henry is above and Hank is below

Monday, December 10, 2007

Newest family members

I would like to introduce you to the newest members of our family.


SNOWBALL...... My DD's little friend!!!



And

HANK... my little friend!!!

These are called DJungarian Dwarf Hamsters or short, DJ Hamsters. They are so very tiny and adorable and very sweet and friendly. No nibbles on the fingers this time. Mr. Nibbles our rat was more than we could handle. So we thought we better go with something a little less nibbly!!! We kind of like our fingers and ears. These little guys never bite. They are very quick on their feet and kind of slippery little dickens. We first saw them at our local Shopping Mall. The man had 4 of them and you could not purchase them without purchasing the cage. He begin to tell us how rare they were to find in the pet stores and that these were the only 4 he had left for the Christmas season . Well I thought, rare or not, I am not paying 75.00 for 2 hamsters and a cage that I do not need. So with many tears shedding, we left the mall with the promise to go straight over to the pet store and see what they had available. We were so excited to see those same cute little, rare, hamsters just across the street. Kind of makes you wonder where his rare hamsters may have come from. Anyways, we fell instantly in love with SnowBall and Hank and knew we both had to each have one. Besides they work better in pairs. When my husband and I first met, he bought me a Chinese hamster which is of the same family as these little guys. I called him Heidi, cause I thought Heidi was a girl, until she grew these rather large tumor looking things on her hind end. We then discovered she was actually a he and those were not tumors at all. LOL!!! I still loved him all the same. He brought me such joy for 2 years. I have never forgotten him and that was 24 years ago. So when I saw these little guys, I knew I just had to have one. My husband said we needed to call him Hank after a favorite TV show we watch every week "Corner Gas" So mine is Hank and my DD's is Snowball. which is rather easy to see where her name came from.



I've been Tagged!!!

Thanks to my friend De, I have been tagged!!! you are such a sneaky little blogger. She got me when I was not looking. This means, you get to know 5 random things about me, even if you do not want to know them and then as a bonus, I get to tag 5 other people and you can go learn something knew about them. That will be the most fun!!! LOL!!! Hmmmm!!! Let me think......... Something you might not already know......

1. I was born in Canton, Mississippi and grew up in the country.
2. My favorite TV shows are Greys Anatomy, October Roads, The Practice and Lost.
3. I am a night owl, thanks to the wonderful Internet and my laptop!!!
4. Love, Love, love, love, love, Carmel Frappicinos from Star Bucks.
5. Oh and here is something few people know about me. I love to dip my McDonald french fries into my vanilla milk shake. YUM, YUM!!! Ultimate goodness!!!

The list could go on and on. I guess you will just have to stay tuned to my blog if you want to find out more quirky things about me. (wink,wink)

Now its my turn to do the tagging. Lets see, who do I .....

How about
Elizabeth
Deanna
Kellie
Chris
Jen
Ok girls, its your turn!!!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

A Sticky Situation

I know you are going to get sick of me doing these Christmas trees, but I just cannot help it. I am so in love with them. I just had to make another one for me, cause I decided that my Mom needed one and I thought she would love the Basic Grey colors. As for me, I wanted to go with the traditional greens and reds. I love the way this one turned out. There is a little story behind the making of this tree and a lesson well learned that I would like to share. I went to a Church crop on Friday night with some of my girlfriends. This was my project of choice to work on at the crop. As I was nearing the end of the project some 4 hours later (because I socialize and eat more than anything) I borrowed my friends Scotch Quick Dry Tacky Adhesive to glue on the circle at the very top. Well I took the lid off and gave it a squeeze. No glue!!! So I got a pin and I tried to clear out the nozzle. It did not seem clogged. So I held it up and gave it another squeeze. Still no glue. I looked down the nozzle and could not see anything stopping it up, so again with another squeeze. Then I decided maybe I am not squeezing hard enough, so I gave it a little harder squeeze. OOP!!!! My almost finished, beautiful tree suddenly looked like a volcano erupting. Glue just ran all down the sides. Of course I could do nothing ,but sit there and laugh. I actually wanted to cry, but laughing was it. I had glue all over my face, hair, and clothes. My friends jumped up and ran to get towels to try and save as much of my tree as possible. My branches were wilting fast from the glue. I was able to pull myself together finally and save most of my tree. What a mess!!! As you can see, only my top part of the tree had to be removed. I did find later a few of the branches with dry glue and replaced those. All together, it was not a complete disaster thanks to my friends. The lesson learned here is, DO NOT SQUEEZE THE BOTTLE!!! If the glue does not come out, than there is definitely cloggage. Squeezing will only result in a horrible sticky situation.
Here is a card that my friend made at the crop. I just love this card and the way it turned out. She is a sewing teacher and she was trying to make a card to give her students that would hold a cute little charm as a gift to each of them and the card to be a Sewing/Christmas theme card. I think she did a awesome job. Oh and by the way, this is her very first card to ever stamp and make. Now what do you think... NOT TO SHABBY AH!!!! for a beginner stamper. She says this will be her last. LOL!!!! I can remember saying those same words. Now I am a card/stamp making addict. Love and adore doing it. I just hope she keeps stamping,cause she defiantly has some stamping talent.

Saturday morning I got up and went to our local High School Craft Show. I was there on a mission. Only to find myself yet another perfect Raggedy. I was very disappointed to find that my favorite vendor was very low on dolls. She had already been to so many shows, that she did not have enough time to replace with new ones. So either she had some too similar to what I already had, or she had them in pairs which was more money than I wanted to spend. I really mostly collect the girl Raggedies and like to keep my spending to 20.00 or less. So with lip hanging down, I went on about my way. I however did bump into the lady from the previous show and bought myself another resin set. They are just adorable. They are now taking up residency in my little hutch where they will be nice and safe from breakage.


Saturday afternoon I went to another crop with some different girlfriends. One of them was having a weekend crop cause her hubby was out of town. So we settled in for a weekend of fun scrapbooking, eating, music and movies. I love the crops at home cause you can just really let your hair down, get comfortable and get into your scrapbooking. I thought I was very successful. If you knew me at all, you would be proud that I was able to complete 5 pages of my 8x8 vacation book that I have been working on for over a year. LOL!!! Yes I know that sounds funny, but really what sounds funny is when you compare that to the other ladies at the crop. I am not sure about one of them, but the other 2 finished 32 pages in their scrapbook album, each completed a Creative Memories Portfolio album with 160 pages and power planned who knows how many more pages. What true scrapbookers they proved to be. I was so proud of them and very amazed at how they pumped those pages out. They said it was because of their new Creative Memories Power Layout Kit that they purchased. I just may have to think about purchasing that in the near future. Anyway, I cropped with them till 5:00 p.m. Sunday and had to go. I could not go any longer. My brain could not think of another page. LOL!!! Here is what I completed.



The only other thing I want to share with the world is................................................. that my Son has moved out of the house. I almost cry to think about it. I would cry, but think I have already used up all of my tears. I have cried inside and out and off and on for over 2 weeks now. Part of me is happy and the other part is very sad. My happiness only comes from the fact that now I no longer have to dread him moving. He has talked about it now for a year and I have stressed and worried and tried to figure out how I could keep him home a little longer. He is only 20 and I feel like he was too young and immature. When he was younger, I always thought I would have to kick him out of the house most likely in his 30's. I guess that was just wishful thinking on my part. I just did not think he would leave home so early. Anyway, now that he has moved, I no longer have to stress over the idea and I can go ahead and deal with him being gone. That makes me happy, because I feel like that is a burden lifted from my shoulders. The worry that is. Not my Son. I love my Son and he has never been a burden. But the idea of him moving and the worry of him moving is now gone. He has moved!!!! The sad part is, that I know once they move, they will never be able to come back home. Yes, they can come back home and from what I hear from my friends, they most likely do come back at least 1 or 2 times before they are gone for good. (Suddenly as I type this, I think of the song on the country station with the lyrics Gone for Good, Good as Gone!!) Anyway back to what I was saying before my brain rudely interrupted me, my thought on that is and the sad part is, its never the same when they come back. Things change from the time they leave and come back. They change, parents change. Everything changes and Everyone gets set in their new ways. They can no longer live at home comfortably after having their freedom. They always have the itch to leave again. There is that feeling of feeling like you have no space or privacy. I know this cause I remember moving back in with my husbands parents. It was just weird. All we could think about was leaving and finding our own place. So my heart is sad knowing my baby boy has learned to fly and is now on his journey to a new life away from home. May God keep him safe!!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Warm Vanilla Milk


Ummmmm!!!! Doesn't this look good. I was trying to think of a cleaver name for my new recipe drink, but nothing seem to come to mind. So I will just call it "Warm Vanilla Milk" Yesterday, I was online looking for a warm drink that I could make for this winter. One of my favorite things to do on a cold day is snuggle up on the couch with either my laptop or a magazine and sip on something warm. I did not want chocolate (gasp), but I wanted something more in the vanilla taste. Yes, imagine that. Me wanting Vanilla. Anyway, I looked and looked and looked for something that sounded good. I finally decided to get in the kitchen and experiment. I mean how hard can it be really. So here is what I came up with.


1 mug of fat free milk heated in microwave for about 2 minutes

then add


1 teaspoon of vanilla

2 heaping teaspoons of confectioners sugar (splenda would work also)

1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon


Stir all ingredients together in the hot milk. Then taste. Add more sugar, vanilla or cinnamon if desired.


Then top with low fat or fat free whip cream with a dash of pumpkin spice on top.


Sit back and enjoy the goodness!!! It is sure to give you that cozy warm feeling you might need on a cold wintry day!!!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Bread Pudding

I got this recipe from my favorite recipe site http://www.familyoven.com/ This is a great place to find and save recipes. There are some really great tried and true recipes on this site. This particular recipe is definitely not on my diet, but then when I bake, most things I bake are not on my diet. Baking just happens to be another one of my favorite things to do and what I do mostly when I am stressed. My 20 year old son told me today that he is moving out next month, December 7th. So I felt the need to bake a comfort food when I heard that news. This one is the one I chose.
This recipe made me think of my Grand Laura. She always made bread pudding. I guess cause it was cheap, easy to make and went a long way around the table. I don't remember a lot about Grand Laura, cause I was young when she passed, but I do remember her making bread pudding. To this recipe, I added some icing. I made it with butter, confectioners sugar and vanilla flavoring. I thought it needed more comfort. I also used the 35 calorie bread for less calories. (Ha, Ha! Thats funny!!!) Like that is going to matter now. You could substitute the eggs, with egg beaters, to lower the calories and fat even more. I just made mine with regular eggs. Now that I know how it should taste, I will do some substitutions the next time around when I am feeling less stress and more health consious. That way I will have a idea of whether it taste better, worse or the same with the substitutions. The recipe as is, WARM AND YUMMY TO THE TUMMY!!!! Its a miricle, I already feel less stressed (wink, wink)

INGREDIENTS
6 slices day-old bread
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
4 eggs, beaten
2 cups milk
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Break bread into small pieces into an 8 inch square baking pan. Drizzle melted butter or margarine over bread. If desired, sprinkle with raisins.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Beat until well mixed. Pour over bread, and lightly push down with a fork until bread is covered and soaking up the egg mixture.
Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the top springs back when lightly tapped.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Free Holiday Printables

Ten Two Studios has free holiday printables beginning December 1st. Every day from December 1st through Christmas, she'll post a new image on the calendar. the catch is that you must post a link to the countdown on your blog, web site, group or message board before you begin downloading. Just post your link here and just sit back and wait until December 1st.
Have fun downloading your free printables!!!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Scrapbooking!!!

Here we are!!! My family!! I love all the kids we have now. They just make the holiday seem more like a holiday. In the picture bottom right is my DD, my hope to be future Nieces, my Nephew and my hope to be future Nephew, middle right is my Daddy, my hope to be future SIL, my Brother and my other Nephew. Top right is Myself, my DH, my Momma and my Son. What a fun family. We had the best time eating and laughing the day away. The guys spent most of the time watching the football game, while the ladies went through Black Friday coupons. The kiddos played on the computer most of the day and had fun spending time with one another. They do not get to see each other very often. Everyone seemed very relaxed and very full from eating. My mom made a huge meal that was soooooo good. She is the best cook!!! I can only hope to fill her shoes some day. I told her she needed to start a recipe blog. If she ever does, I will post her link to my blog. She has some wonderful Southern recipes that you would just love to try.


I waited till around 9:00 in hopes of dodging the early morning shoppers and met my friend Dawn at Hobby Lobby to take advantage of the 50% off on Christmas decorations. My shopping list consist of new Christmas stockings for my kids, a tree skirt, and some ornaments for my red, green and gold tree. Husband and I decided this year we wanted to go with something different than our usual Christmas , so we went with Red, Gold and Green. We also decided that since we have this adorable kitten in our home, we better go with plastic. Luckily, they made some beautiful ornaments in those colors. I found everything I needed, except a tree skirt. I guess I will have to shop around for that. After Hobby Lobby, Dawn and I came to my house for some all day scrapbooking. We were joined a little later in the morning by our friend Debbie. After a few hours of us working on different projects, we decided it was time for another trip to Hobby Lobby. Dawn and Debbie both wanted to make Christmas trees. They just loved mine and so we headed to the store for all the supplies. These trees are very addictive. They are sooo darn cute. I shared what paper I had left from my Christmas tree, so all they needed was a cone, ornaments, a topper and pins. Once we found what we needed, we stopped at the grocery store for some snacks and a much needed Frappicinos to carry us through the night. Back to scrapbooking we shall go!!!!
For the trees I thought I would let you know how I made mine in case you want to make one for yourself. My tree has 8 rows of 1/2"x6" strips of different double sided cardstock paper curled with a pencil, a box of extra long dressmaker pins, Styrofoam cone, tree topper, mini ornaments. Starting at the bottom going up, you will need 22 strips, 2nd row from bottom, 21 strips, 3rd row from bottom 17 strips, 4th row 17 strips, 5th row 15 strips, 6th row 12 strips, 7th row 10 strips, 8th row ,top row, 8 strips. After you cut and curl your strips of paper, using 2 pins for each strip, pin to cone at the top of the strip and towards the middle right before the curl. This way your paper will show on both sides. Start the next row about a inch from the top pin of the previous row. Your second pin should be pinned right above the 1st pin of the row below. Hopefully that makes sense. Here are a couple of pictures to hopefully explain what I am saying. For better instructions on making these trees and more gogous ideas, please refer to the blog "Polished to Perfection" Kellie is the lady from whom the original idea was inspired.


We cropped till almost midnight. Dawn I think won the most "Productive Award" for the day. She made 2 notebooks, 17 Bella Christmas cards, and a tree. I was so amazed at how much she got done. We never get that much done at a store crop. To many distractions I guess. Anyway, Debbie finished her tree and worked on her swap cards, while I tried to figure out the memory cube http://www.crafttvweekly.com/player.html?wid=116 for the 2nd time. Grrrrrrrr!!!!!!! I usually never have problems figuring out things, but this project has whooped my behind twice now. I cannot decide whether or not I should throw in the towel, or keep trying. I hate to admit defeat. Its such a darn cute project. Anyways, we had such a fun day together. Love my friends and scrapbooking!!!! Here are photos below of our completed projects.
Above is my tree with topper and orniments.
Dawn's Projects above, and Debbie's projects below! Love those tree toppers girlfriends. They just make the tree complete!!!


This is my poor memory block. As you can see, it just did not come together very good. It has such cute potential though. Maybe after the frustration of spending the entire day making this has passed, I will try again!!!!


Sunday, November 18, 2007

A Basic Grey weekend!!!


I have been a busy little scrapbook bee this past week and weekend. Thursday night, I stayed home from cake decorating class and finished some Christmas ornaments that I had started earlier in the week. I found this great blog that shared a really great ornament tutorial. http://emilygiovanni.com/?p=1284 I am making some of my ornaments this year for my tree so that my cat will not break my good ornaments. These were very fun and easy to make. I used my Cricut to cut them out. The rest is explained in the tutorial. I used Stickles and Basic Grey "FruitCake" paper to make them.



Friday I went over to my new friend Deanna's house to scrap. We had the best time talking about our family's and scrapbooking. What a awesome lady!!!! While I was there, I finished up on a Basic Grey Ornament kit I had purchased a few years ago. There were 3 small and 1 large ornament in the kit. What awesome ornaments these turned out to be. So much fun to do.

Deanna made a fabulous Christmas Tree out of curled papers and a Styrofoam cone. I just fell in love with it and knew I had to go to Hobby Lobby and purchase everything to make myself one. Here is the website where Deanna found the tree idea http://murdocks.typepad.com/polishedtoperfection/2007/11/index.html This lady has made some wonderful Christmas trees. I wish I had taken my camera with me so that I could have gotten pictures of Deanna's tree. I loved the paper she used. The paper defiantly makes a huge difference in how beautiful they look. So after a fun evening, I came home and did a little reading on the website she shared with me and planned out my shopping trip to Hobby Lobby. On Saturday after a work picnic, I headed to Hobby Lobby with a couple of my friends. My friend Glenda gave me the best gift ever. I was so surprised when she said she had something for me. I was even more surprised when I saw what it was.

I felt like a kid at Christmas opening this gift. I nearly fainted when I saw the word Hanna Stamps http://www.hannastamps.com/ . What a awesome friend. I must say that I am the luckest girl ever to have such wonderful friends in my life. Everyone is so caring and giving to one another. Thank You Glenda for the awesome stamp set. I love you tons!!! I just could not possibly ask for better friends. Anyway, after a fun time shopping for our supplies, we all met at my friend Jimmie's house for a little scrapbook time together. I really have decided after this weekend that I do love scrapbooking at someones house better than at a store. Its just so much more personal and comfortable to me. You can just let your hair down and be more of yourself. Our awesome hostess ordered pizza and made us some oven baked chocolate chip cookies. YUM!!! YUM!!!! She is the hostess with the mostess that is for sure. During all this great hospitality, I created my tree. It took me till 2:00 in the morning to do it, but I think it turned out really cute. (giving myself pats on the back)

Again I used Basic Grey "Fruitcake" on my tree. I guess you can tell by now that I really do love this paper. So now for my tree, alls I need now is a topper. I plan to go back to Hobby Lobby tomorrow to find just the perfect star for my cute little curly tree.

Today, after sleeping very late, I went over to another one of my friends house and we worked on Christmas cards. She wanted to learn the prisma/mineral spirits technique. Together, we created a couple of fabulous Christmas cards for her to make for her sewing students. We had a great time Stamping and chatting the afternoon away!!!! I love weekends like this one. I cannot think of too many other things I like better than spending time with my friends.