Thursday, December 31, 2009

Blue Moon Photos-thanks to Moonie for reminding me

I am visiting some pages, and Moonie reminds me of the full moon tonight. I look out the window and wow!!! It is bright and glowing and welcoming in the New Year.

I took one photo from inside thru a window, and I braved the cold and took a couple more. We were so soupy, overcast, gloomy-you name no sun, only clouds, but tonight looks like a very clear sky.

Look at the moon too, and we will all be connected tonight-welcoming in the New Year

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Just a Few Photos-a Walk to the Pond with Autumn

I took a walk with Autumn first, then came back and took Nikita for a walk. A gloomy looking day, but at least it is warmer and no wind-a big plus. Now I am off to find some dry wood-click on photos to make larger

Blue moon to shine on New Year's Eve

Link this will take you to my friend Heidi's page-a good explanation of the Blue Moon-thanks Heidi

Good Morning

A little snow here this morning-always pretty in the woods.

However, we are in for some more very very cold temps to welcome in the New Year. We have had so much rain here, that although the wood pile is covered up well-it is damp and some of it really wet-so we had a difficult time getting some heat going. If it warms up this afternoon, need to see if I can find some dryer wood.

I found some more flower motifs that I should be able to quilt with-decided in the 6 inch and 4 inch blocks to quilt a flower, and the rest of the blocks will outline them. In the green sashing -flowers in the corners and the rest leaves, in the neutral border-tulips, and not sure yet on the outer most border. probably cross hatching.

Gotta go to town this morning, we ordered a shot that prevents getting shingles. I had never heard of this before and is advised to take when you reach 60 years of age. My insurance does not pay for shots and these are 400.00 if I get it at the doctors office-yikes. So I called around and I can get for half at Walgreens, and a little cheaper at our health dept. so I ordered one for Larry, and today I will order mine. Anyone else take this shot? My doctor said he doesn't go along with some stuff out there like the h1n1 they are pushing, but he definately advises to take this one.

Enjoy your Wednesday

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Holiday Recipe Share--New Year's Eve

If you would like to share recipes or links to some festive New Year's Eve foods please let me know and I will link up to you. Also check my note and calender post for more links-which I will work on adding here too.

Heidi gorgeous seafood

Mamabear on her chicken blog today-her deviled eggs

From Agnes in France-I copied her post from my calender:

agnes128 wrote today at 9:58 AM
I have a few ideas :

salad in a glass, we call it 'verrine' and it is really posh as :
avocado, mache, shrimps, fresh mushrooms and 2 cherry tomatoes with a lemony-olive oil sauce
goat cheese, croutons with garlic, black and green olives and shredded lettuce.

Roasted duck with chesnut and dried apricots.
Beef Wellington and sauteed mushrooms
Fatted chicken with scampi in American sauce with white rice

Dessert :
Ice with warm meringue crust
Victoria cake

I have always loved Better Homes and Gardens for foods, quilting, gardening, party ideas and such; so they did not dissappoint me

New Years Party Appetizers from Better Homes and Gardens (38 appetizers)

Here are photos of some of the appetizers-click on link for recipes

Greens with Spiced Corn Bread greens with spiced cornbread

Mustard-Glazed Pork Skewers mustard glazed pork skewers

Shrimp Scampi-Style shrimp scampi style

Avocado with Prosciutto avocado wrapped with prosciutto

Herb-Baked Olives herb baked olives

Caramelized Onion and Fig Bruschetta carmelized onion and fig brushetta

And from Eating Well some really good looking foods here too

recipe here

Good morning

Feels like the wind finally left for a bit, and we woke up to temps in the 20s-what a difference that makes-the woodstoves can actually keep up now.

I think I am going to have myself a lazy day today, after I get more wood in, have my quilt motifs figured out pretty much now, on how I want to quilt my project.

Speaking of quilting-any quilters out there reading this-have any of you used the 100% washable wool battings or the bamboo/cotton blends? am anxious to try these out. I would love to make a quilt with the new wool battings but from what I have read you can wash them but can't put them in the dryer-have to lay flat to dry-that would not be too easy to handle.

Also check the calender and my note-I would like recipes to share with us all for New Years Eve parties-and also those that can be made at home and then taken to the party.

Enjoy your tuesday!

Monday, December 28, 2009

It's Chicken Tuesdays---Football Chicken

My team is playing soooooo bad tonight, I am not a happy camper-soooo thought I would look for some football chicken

I found just what I needed right now-a great Laugh

Here is a link to several football chicken recipes

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Where is the Loaded Flintlock when I Need One??-lol

It is still sooooo cold and very very windy still today, and there is alot of ice all over too, so stayed inside most of the day feeding the two woodstoves.

I did still take Nikita out for our walk, and then I filled up the open dish wild bird feeders.

So this afternoon, while going thru my sources to figure out some quilting motifs, I look up and there is a herd of at least 7 deer up close to the house-eating all the newly put out bird food. Larry was sound asleep taking a nap or I would have asked him to get his primitive flintlock ready to shoot-tomorrow is the last of the gun season and for muzzleload only. I don't even have my Remingotn modern muzzleload ready. So I guess no more venison in the freezer for this year. lol But the "show" was way too muc fun.

The deer were in no hurry either, they hung around the backyard for about an hour. a big doe and little buck were fighting over the bird seed, and then all of a sudden they are all looking toward the corner of the house and stomping their feet-I look-and there is Autumn walking right towards all the deer-He is not afraid of anything and always causing caos-lol. What does he do??-he joins the deer eating the seed-and they let him! Just too funny.

If you blow up the photos you can see better, I took these inside the bay window and I always forget how to turn the flash off-so photos come out dark, and Larry lightens them up enough to view. Check towards the front around the feeders to find a couple deer and Autumn too in a couple of them, and look in the back by the tree line and you will see more deer.

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Little Doings Here and Photo of my Quilt on frame

Dinner went well, I served around 2 in the afternoon. It is still very very windy and bitter cold around 12 degrees here, not figuring in the wind chills. I think it has actually gotton colder since this morning, we are having a difficult time keeping the wood stoves cranking out heat-some of the older windows have ice on the inside-so is definately colder here than normal.

I just took a photo of my quilt in the frame, anxious to try this out. I am working on some quilt designs, thinking of leaves in the green sashings, and I found a daisy pattern that if we can blow it up to fit the 12 inch blocks I think I want to go with that, as there are alot of flowers in the fabrics. Perhaps feathers in the outer border. Our bedroom is huge, so the quilt frame can sit in front of the big bay window, is near the wood stove, and there is a ceiling light above too, I may also need to get floor light that I can put right on the area where I am working-will need to see how it goes.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Some Doings

If you enjoy mother nature you will love this christmas card I got from the Missouri Conservation

I spent yesterday and today rebasting a quilt that I needed to redo. 16 hours later-I finished-yeh! Now to go thru my craft room and see if I have some fabric I can sew on to my hand quilting frame as leaders for the quilt-I am anxious to try this process out-will take pictures when I get it set up.

We have been in the 50s yesterday and today, but big big t storms and lots of rain turning to snow coming in. so some wild weather coming in-always fun-lol

Larry is hoping to go on the lake and go fishing tomorrow morning, hoping he doesn't get rained out.

Merry Christmas everyone

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Holiday Recipe Share Fridays--Christmas Eve and Day Dinner

Christmas Eve Dinners are often large feasts. Because Christmas is a global holiday, Christmas Eve traditions, including the types of dinners served and eaten, vary largely from country to country and culture to culture.

For example, in America some families prefer a meal similar to a Thanksgiving dinner with turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes, while others dine on kielbasa (Polish sausage), cabbage, soup, ham, casseroles or lasagna. Still others prefer ham, or even going out to a restaurant for a meal fancier than one would want to prepare at home.

Taken from here with lots more information, global traditions and recipes

When I was growing up at home, Christmas dinner was almost always spent with my Grandma on the farm, lots of food and lots of cousins to play with. We would go to a midnight candlelight service at our Methodist church Christmas eve, but Mom would never allow us to open any presents til Christmas morning. Sometimes day would persuade her to let us open one gift-as when he was a boy they always opened their gifts on christmas eve.

I know we always had wonderful home baked goodies that we made to eat and share, and Grandma always had a whole kitchen full too, I think we usually had a turkey dinner.

Thru the years I always worked all the sundays and holidays I could get, cause that's where I could make alot of overtime, we didn't have children, and no family close by, but I always found time to bake for us and to give away for gifts, and I always prepared a nice meal for us, that many years included friends that were away from their family and loved ones too.


Enough of all my ramblings on-if you would like to share recipes, traditions of your Christmas eve and day-please tell us about it here in comments or link us to your blog post.

It Could Always be Worse

When ever I would get down about life stuff, my father would always tell me, you know it really is not all that bad, things will work out, and someone beside's you always has it worse off than you.

I have been reminded how true this is today.

I retired from the phone company at the end of 2003 with 25 years. If I would have stayed and gone for 30 years I would have had to commute 2 hours each way by train to downtown Chicago-no thank you, especially since our hours changed daily according to seniority, as did days off each week. At that time our office was surplus, and was offering $150,000.00 packages for us to leave-I really wanted that money-but this was taxed money, and I needed my "time in" with my pension secured and health benefits secured before I could take that offer. Alot of girls got lucky and were able to get their pensions and take that money. So I was always upset about that. I could have worked til the end of December 2003 as they offered that money again at that time, but we needed to finish packing and moving to Missouri and I didn't want to do that during the winter months.

So I get upset about that extra money sometimes, but at the same time so thankful to be living in a more beautiful place and have my pension too.

I just got an email from my friend that just retired out recently, and she informed me that the phone company just announced the closing of our office-with no chance of transfers anywhere else within the company. My friend is naming off all these friends I know who are 4 days short of their pension, 2 years short, 4 years short-can you imagine being that close to your life's pension and have it all taken away? I am so sick over this sad news.

Prayers for all these people who have just had their lives turned upside down and at Christmas time too.

Anyone Else up Early Making Chistmas Goodies This Morning??

For some reason I have been waking up around 4 am, can't get back to sleep so just get up-add logs to the woodstove and play on the computer a bit-catch up on emails and such.

Again this morning, but today I decided I am going to make my Grandma's crunchy bars. I bought all the ingredients, this was my very most favorite recipe at christmas time that my grandma made for us-and she made pans and pans of this as there were lots of grandkids. Thru the years I don't think I have ever been successful with this recipe. I don't always do good with candy recipes that need thermometers-lol

I have had a real taste for this treat again so today was the morning. I dove right in and did a double batch as I didn't want to do this twice hehe. It's very simple, fantastic when it turns out, and when it doesn't turn out it either is too hard-like the purchased rice krispie treats, or too soft and won't stick together.

You must use cream, Grandma used her own from her farm, but in the store you have to buy the whipping cream.

Everything was going well, but the thermometer was stuck on 220 and wouldn't rise, after 10 minutes I get out another thermometer-same thing won't go over the 220 and I need to get to the soft ball stage. So I am waiting and waiting, the candy is getting a little dark now-I am starting to panic a bit-oh no not again-I don't want it all to burn-then I remember Grandma Never used a thermometer she always used that ice water test-so I get out books quick to find the information on that, no luck, then I remember my old Joy of Cooking book-that will have it-and it did-so I do the test-and its perfect Right now-but the thermometer still says 220-so I take it off pour it over the mix-and Yeh!!perfectly made-Happy Dancing Here

Here is a copy of the recipe-it is included in that 2006 link in my last blog.

Crunchy Bars

This recipe comes from my Grandma Jones. She always made many pans of this treat at Christmas time. It would not be Christmas at Grandmas if we did not have these. This recipe does NOT work to change any of the ingredients-I have tried. So if I want to make these I have to bite the bullet and use ingredients as given.

1 cup sugar

1 cup cream-no subsitutes allowed

1 cup white corn syrup

2 cups crispy rice cereal

5 cups cornflakes

2 cups salted peanuts

Cook sugar, cream, and syrup to the softball stage.

Remove from heat and pour over the cereal and nuts.

Mix well and pack into a well buttered pan.

When cool cut into squares.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Brisket Update and Fudge

Last night we put the beef brisket into our slow cooker at the lowest setting possible-that was around 7 pm. Early this morning I checked it-and was very tender-yeh-so I turned it off, and then when I left for the day at 11 am I turned it back on, and cooked real low again til Sandy and I got back from town around 5 ish. Soooo supper was good. Yeh!!

I just finished cutting up my 5 pound pan of dark chocolate fudge-this one was one of the best I've made.

Here is the recipe:

Fannie May Type Fudge

We got this recipe from Larrys cousin Janice. This is actually the very best fudge to make during the holidays. It makes 5 pounds. So I cut it up in pieces and freeze with wax paper between the layers. Then I add these to my Christmas goodies bag. This is also very easy to whip up, none of that long beating like Grandmas chocolate fudge

I have since changed this recipe a bit; using diabetic friendly sugars etc, and using all dark chocolates. I will put my changes to the right of the recipe ingredients.

4 cups sugar-I now use 3 cups splenda and 1 cup natural sugar

1 cup whole milk-I now use Silk brand unsweetened soy milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract-I use my own homemade

25 large marshmallows-cut up-use a wet knife or wet scissors to keep from sticking to the blade while cutting

1 cup butter-I use 1/2 cup lightest olive oil and 1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 13 ounce package Hersheys milk chocolate bars-cut up into small pieces-I now look for the darkest chocolate bars with 60% to 80 % cocoa in them

1 12 ounce bag semisweet chocolate chips-I now use darkest chocolate chips I can find

2 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate-chop into small chunks

1 cup nuts-I like any kind-walnuts, pecans, almonds

Mix milk, sugar, vanilla, and butter in a large heavy saucepan. Boil mixture for 2 minutes.

Turn off the heat and add the cut up marshmallows, and stir until melted. Now start adding and stirring in the chocolates, a little quantity at a time, I stir in handfuls at a time til melted, and then add more. Do this rapidly so you can get all the chocolate in and melted.

Stir in the nuts

Pour into a large greased (or wax paper lined) pan-a cookie sheet with sides works well. 12x16x1 works perfect.

I put this in the frigerator til set and firm.

Cut ito pieces, and store in the freezer. This is a softer fudge, but heavenly smooth and creamy.

You can also experiment with different flavors of chocolate-mint is very good.

This is the recipe I have posted to my blog in the past. This recipe is pretty versatile-it does turn out pretty well with the splenda, turns out better with all butter, and I usually don't have any real milk in the frig, but I always have Silks soy milk so I usually use that. and for the chocolates-use what you like just add up the total ounces in the recipe.

What I did this time was use all organic sugar, silks light soymilk, my homemade vanilla extract, the marshmallows, one 13 ounce Hersheys special dark chocolate, and for the other 12 ounces of chocolate I used Hersheys special dark chocolate and 100% cacoa chocolate bar, 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, I used no nuts this time.

I pour this into a cookie sheet pan with sides that have been buttered, cover with wax paper and let set up in the freezer. When you go to cut it, you may need to let it sit out of the frig for up to a half hour to soften up enough to cut up nice. This fudge is soooo creamy and smooth, I serve at room temperature, but store in the freezer or frigerator.

Monday, December 14, 2009

It's Chicken Tuesdays

I was checking for an easy recipe, one for this busy time of year, or one you can take with to a potluck.

< Ingredients

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cups diced celery
  • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
  • 2 cups mayonnaise
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
  • 2 cans (8 ounces each) water chestnuts, drained
  • 1 can (8 ounces) mushroom stems and pieces, drained
  • 1 cup slivered almonds
  • 2 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 cans (2.8 ounces each) french-fried onions


  • Place chicken in a Dutch oven and cover with water; add bay leaves. Bring to a boil. Cook, uncovered, until juices run clear. Remove chicken and cut into 1/2-in. cubes; place in a large bowl. Add the next 11 ingredients.
  • Transfer to a 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish (dish will be full). Sprinkle with cheese and onions. Bake, uncovered, at 350� for 30 minutes or until heated through. Yield: 16 servings.

Nutrition Facts: 1 serving (1 each) equals 475 calories, 39 g fat (11 g saturated fat), 78 mg cholesterol, 839 mg sodium, 10 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 18 g protein.

Hot Chicken Salad published in Country Woman November/December 1998, p31

from Taste of Home

photo found on photobucket-lol

Monday Doings

We were fairly warm this morning, no sun, but not alot of wind yet, so I decided to go to town, do some errands like pay taxes, license plates, and go to wal mart. Of course wal mart is always a bigger trip than planned-but I bought hopefully the last of the stuff we need for at least 3 weeks-hope so anyways lol This saturday we are picking up a big angel food order too, so we should be set thru New Years, when our Illinois friend may drive down again for another visit

Mama Bear (this recipe is set for her network) posted a recipe for beef brisket-the smoked version sounds sooo good and I do have a smoker, but the weather is changing to bitter cold again, it's already blowing in; so I checked online and found a nice looking recipe from Tyler Florence here Those of you that have made this-what do you think of Tylers recipe??

I am surprising Larry with a hanukkah meal this week. I bought a beautiful looking 5 # beef brisket, which I have never in my life prepared before, and I will attempt the potato latkes too. I also found a recipe for spinach balls, but I forgot to buy the parmesean cheese so will probably just serve another green veggie.

I bought more stuff for candy making and cooking baking, why?? I dont know-lol, I really don't have that many people to pass it on to, but christmas for me was always spent in the kitchen with my mom and my late little sister-so when I spend time in the kitchen it makes me happy. so thats my christmas to myself I suppose.

Yeh!! the Vikings won again yesterday, but would some football team out there please beat the colts????? I really don't like them and wish they would get beat. lol

I need to make at least one more christmas card this week, I am having fun playing with mistyfuse for the first time-very cool stuff. This must be a small enough company yet, as when I send them an email they are very helpful and respond right away.

I need to eat something, figure out what we are going to have for supper, and perhaps make up a batch of biscotti-that was really excellent. I am also getting the woodstoves going as the wind howls outside and the temps drop-Later

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Yeh, my blog compose page is back-for right now anyways-lol

Baking more cookies this morning. I made a dried cranberry and almond biscotti-wonderful! Going to make another batch of these, maybe change the dried fruits or nuts.

and I made my white sugar dough for christmas cut outs but I changed the whole recipe-and so happy it turned out very good. I used up the all purpose gluten free baking mix from Bobs, some of Bobs gluten free pizza mix, and a little spelt flour. I did use the butter, for the sugar I used mostly splenda with a little sugar. I just did half a recipe to see how they would turn out-am very happy with them. So, you can make christmas cookies gluten free and less sugar for diabetics-lol

I am going to blend up some sugar and splenda and a little cornstarch and make up some confectionary sugar for icing.

Everything finished up, just in time for my viking football game

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Sharing a Cookie Recipe I am Making Now

This is from a newer edition of The Joy of Cooking cookbook-I have always liked this book the older and now the newer version for good basic info. and nice recipes too.

They have an Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookie with less fat, this is a hardy cookie, but still light, and not overly sweet either which I like. I will put to the left my changes. These turned out really good.

preheat oven to 375 degrees, you want to use the center of the oven if possible, and they are suggesting to only bake one tray at a time.

whisk together:

1 1/4 cup flour--I used gluten free mix

3/4 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/4 salt--I omit

beat on medium speed until well blended

1/4 cup corn or canola oil--I used lightest olive oil

2 tbsp. unsalted butter softened

1 cup dark brown sugar packed-I do not pack any more

1 large egg

1 large egg white--I am lazy and don't want the yolk leftover so just did 2 eggs. the egg white only probably makes the cookies lighter

1/3 cup light or dark corn syrup--I used agave nectar

1 tbsp skim milk

Stir into the batter

2 cups old fashioned rolled oats

1 cup reduced fat semisweet chocolate chips-I used nestles new dark chocolate and mint chips and I waited til the end of recipe to stir in

Let the mixture stand for 10 minutes so the oats can absorb some of the moisture (what a cool idea I like this)

Stir in the flour mixture, the dough will be slightly soft (after this is when I added in the chips)

Drop the dough by heaping measuring tbsp. onto the sheets spacing about 2 1/2 inches apart. I made my cookies a little smaller and baked on parchment paper

bake until the cookies are tinged with brown all over and the centers are just barely firm when lightly pressed 7 to 10 mintues. my oven tool 10 minutes. be careful not to overbake

remove the sheet to a rack and let stand about 2 minutes before removing the cookies to racks to cool

can view the limited edition chips here

A Christmas Story

I am sharing this story that a friend on one of my online quilt groups posted

Christmas Eve 1881

Pa never had much compassion for the lazy or those

who squandered their means and then never had enough for the

necessities. But for those who were genuinely in need, his

heart was as big as all outdoors. It was from him that I

learned the greatest joy in life comes from giving, not from


It was Christmas Eve 1881. I was fifteen years old

and feeling like the world had caved in on me because there

just hadn't been enough money to buy me the rifle that

I'd wanted for Christmas. We did the chores early that

night for some reason. I just figured Pa wanted a little

extra time so we could read in the Bible.

After supper was over I took my boots off and

stretched out in front of the fireplace and waited for Pa to

get down the old Bible. I was still feeling sorry for

myself and, to be honest, I wasn't in much of a m ood to

read Scriptures. But Pa didn't get the Bible, instead he

bundled up again and went outside. I couldn't figure it

out because we had already done all the chores. I didn't

worry about it long though, I was too busy wallowing in

self-pity. Soon Pa came back in. It was a cold clear night

out and there was ice in his beard. "Come on,

Matt," he said. "Bundle up good, it's cold out

tonight." I was really upset then. Not only wasn't

I getting the rifle for Christmas, now Pa was dragging me

out in the cold, and for no earthly reason that I could see.

We'd already done all the chores, and I couldn't

think of anything else that needed doing, especially not on

a night like this. But I knew Pa was not very patient at

one dragging one's feet when he'd told them to do

something, so I got up and put my boots back on and got my

cap, coat, and mittens. Ma gave me a mysterious smile as I

opened the door to leave the house. Something was up, but I

didn't know what..

Outside, I became even more dismayed. There in

front of the house was the work team, already hitched to the

big sled. Whatever it was we were going to do wasn't

going to be a short, quick, little job. I could tell. We

never hitched up this sled unl ess we were going to haul a

big load. Pa was already up on the seat, reins in hand. I

reluctantly climbed up beside him. The cold was already

biting at me. I wasn't happy. When I was on, Pa pulled

the sled around the house and stopped in front of the

woodshed. He got off and I followed. "I think

we'll put on the high sideboards," he said.

"Here, help me." The high sideboards! It had

been a bigger job than I wanted to do with just the low

sideboards on, but whatever it was we were going to do would

be a lot bi gger with the high side boards on.

After we had exchanged the sideboards, Pa went into

the woodshed and came out with an armload of wood - the wood

I'd spent all summer hauling down from the mountain, and

then all Fall sawing into blocks and splitting. What was he

doing? Finally I said something. "Pa," I asked,

"what are you doing?" You been by the Widow

Jensen's lately?" he asked. The Widow Jensen lived

about two miles down the road. Her husband had

died a year or so before and left her with three children,

the oldest being eight. Sure, I'd been by, but so what?

Yeah," I said, "Why?"

"I rode by just today," Pa said.

"Little Jakey was out digging around in the woodpile

trying to find a few chips. They're out of wood,

Matt." That was all he said and then he turned and

went back into the woodshed for an other armload of wood. I

followed him. We loaded the sled so high that I began to

wonder if the horses would be able to pull it. Finally, Pa

called a halt to our loading, then we went to the smoke

house and Pa took down a big ham and a side of bacon. He

handed them to me and told me to put them in the sled and

wait. When he returned he was carrying a sack of flour over

his right shoulder and a smaller sack of something in his

left hand. "What's in the little sack?" I

asked. Shoes, they're out of shoes. Little Jakey just

had gunny sacks wrapped around his feet when he was out in

the woodpile this morning. I got the children a little

candy too. It just wouldn't be Christmas without a

little candy."

We rode the two miles to Widow Jensen's pretty

much in silence. I tried to think through what Pa was

doing. We didn't have much by worldly standards. Of

co urse, we did have a big woodpile, though most of what was

left now was still in the form of logs that I would have to

saw into blocks and split before we could use it. We also

had meat and flour, so we could spare that, but I knew we

didn't have any money, so why was Pa buying them shoes

and candy? Really, why was he doing any of this? Widow

Jensen had closer neighbors than us; it shouldn't have

been our concern.

We came in from the blind side of the Jensen house

and unloaded the wood as quietly as possible, then we took

the meat and flour and shoes to the door. We knocked. The

door opened a crack and a timid voice said, "Who is

it?" "Lucas Miles, Ma'am, and my son, Matt,

could we come in for a bit?"

Widow Jensen opened the door and let us in. She

had a blanket wrapped around her shoulders. The children

were wrapped in another and were sitting in front of the

fireplace by a very small fire that hardly gave off any heat

at all. Widow Jensen fumbled with a match and finally lit

the lamp.

"We brought you a few things, Ma'am,"

Pa said and set down the sack of flour. I put the meat on

the table. Then Pa handed her the sack that had the shoes

in it. She opened it hesitantly and took the shoes out one

pair at a time. There was a pair for her and one for each

of the children - sturdy shoes, the best, shoes that would

last. I watched her carefully. She bit her lower lip to

keep it from trembling and then tears filled her eyes and

started running down her cheeks. She looked up at Pa like

she wanted to say

something, but it wouldn't come out.

"We brought a load of wood too,

Ma'am," Pa said. He turned to me and said,

"Matt, go bring in enough to last awhile. Let's get that fire up to size
and heat this place up." I

wasn't the same person when I went back out to bring in

the wood. I had a big lump in my throat and as much as I

hate to admit it, there were tears in my eyes too. In my

mind I kept seeing those three kids huddled around the

fireplace and their mother standing there with tears running

down her cheeks with so much gratitude in her heart that she

couldn't speak.

My heart swelled within me and a joy that I'd

never known before, filled my soul. I had given at

Christmas many times before, but never when it had made so

much difference. I could see we were literally saving the

lives of these people.

I soon had the fire blazing and everyone's

spirits soared. The kids started giggling when Pa handed

them each a piece of candy and Widow Jensen looked on with a

smile that probably hadn't crossed her face for a lon g

time. She finally turned to us. "God bless you,"

she said. "I know the Lord has sent you. The children

and I have been praying that he would send one of his angels

to spare us."

In spite of myself, the lump returned to my throat

and the tears welled up in my eyes again. I'd never

thought of Pa in those exact terms before, but after Widow

Jensen mentioned it I could see that it was probably true.

I was sure that a better man than Pa had never walked the

earth. I started remembering all the times he had gone out

of his way for Ma and me, and many others. The list seemed

endless as I thought on it.

Pa insisted that everyone try on the shoes before

we left. I was amazed when they all fit and I wondered how

he had known what sizes to get. Then I guessed that if he

was on an errand for the Lord that the Lord would make sure

he got the right sizes.

Tears were running down Widow Jensen's face

again when we stood up to leave. Pa took each of the kids

in his big arms and gave them a hug. They clung to him and

didn't want us to go. I could see that they missed

their Pa, and I was glad that I still had mine.

At the door Pa turned to Widow Jensen and said,

"The Mrs. wanted me to invite you and the children over

for Christmas dinner tomorrow. The turkey will be more than

the three of us can eat, and a man can get cantankerous if

he has to eat turkey for too many meals. We'll be by to

get you about eleven. It'll be nice to have some little

ones around again. Matt, here, hasn't been little for

quite a spell." I was the youngest. My two brothers

and two sisters had all married and had moved away.

Widow Jensen nodded and said, "Thank you,

Brother Miles. I don't have to say , May the Lord bless

you, I know for certain that He will."

Out on the sled I felt a warmth that came from deep

within and I didn't even notice the cold. When we had

gone a ways, Pa turned to me and said, "Matt, I want

you to know something. Your ma and me have been tucking a

little money away here and there all year so we could buy

that rifle for you, but we didn't have quite enough.

Then yesterday a man who owed me a little money from years

back came by to make things square. Your ma and me were

real excited, thinking that now we could get you that rifle,

and I started into town this morning to do just that, but on

the way I saw little Jakey out scratching in the woodpile

with his feet wrapped in those gunny sacks and I knew what I

had to do. Son, I spent the money for shoes and a little

candy for those children. I hope

you understand."

I understood, and my eyes became wet with tears

again. I understood very well, and I was so glad Pa had

done it. Now the rifle seemed very low on my list of

priorities. Pa had given me a lot more. He had given me

the look on Widow Jensen's face and the radiant smiles

of her three children.

For the rest of my life, Whenever I saw any of the

Jensens, or split a block of wood, I remembered, and

remembering brought back that same joy I felt riding home

beside Pa that night. Pa had given me much more than a rifle

that night, he had given me the best Christmas of my life.

Don't be too busy today. Share this inspiring

message. God bless you!


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Hump Day Handmade-Homemade Christmas Ornaments

I remember growing up that we always made a few homemade christmas ornaments. I don't think it was because we were that poor, but rather a fun project with family, and being in camp fire girls we always made stuff there too.

We strung alot of popcorn, and we made those little construction paper garlands, and beads on balls etc.

My mom also made these really cool embelished candles. She would find little glass candle holders shaped like stars and such and pour melted wax in there to form a base. Then put a taper candle in there. Then she would melt parafin and then whip it with a hand blender til it looked fluffy like cream, and then she would put that on the base around bottom of candle and swirl it up to the top of candle. While still warm she would sprinkle glitter on there and then while still warm would stick in little ornaments at the base. We would make these as pairs and then give away as gifts. I haven't made these since then, must try this again-these were really neat.

Looking for some fun links for handmade ornaments:

How to make Christmas garlands:

Raffia - An inexpensive country look garland can be made from strands of raffia (clip raffia to even lengths and tie or wire lengths together). Wire swags onto branches to control the wild raffia look.

Vines - Long natural vines can be used as a garland if they are thin and flexible enough to be worked around the tree.

Chains - Homemade chains of paper strips or ribbon lengths can be made in any size or color you desire.

Popcorn - The old standby of popcorn and cranberry garlands add a homey look to your tree. You'll need to experiment with needles, thread, and popcorn to determine the best method. This project may be better suited to a small tree since stringing 50+ feet of garland for a taller tree may be more than you can do.

Mini Pinecones - Pinecones look wonderful on a tree, especially a country or cabin themed tree. Look for commerically made garlands of mini-cones, or try making your own if you have a source of small pinecones.

Beads - Beaded garlands are a traditional favorite. Buy commerical styles in wood, faux pearls, and artificial cranberry. Or, string your own custom garland with the beads of your choice.

Trimmings - There are many craft and fabric materials that can be creatively used as garland. Look for cording, trimmings, artificial leaf garlands, tassles, upholstery trims, and more.

Twine, Rope - Twist, braid, knot, or loop twine or rope into a special garland. This might be perfect for a nautical tree, a Western themed tree, or a country tree. - Almost any paper decoration can be folded over a piece of twine or cording to make your own garland. Cut shapes out of folded paper, then glue the halves together with the twine encased in the fold. Space evenly on the twine, every 6" or so. Think about using color copies of photos, folded paper snowflakes, construction paper hearts, cardboard cabin shapes, etc

found here

I also found this fun christmas candle link

Very cool!! I just found the process for the whipped parafin, but we made our candles like I described above

So go have some fun and make some Christmas Magic

Last of the Cookbooks

New Offers and a link to other cookbooks available here

Prescription for Nutritional Healing by Balch large soft cover mine is 1990 edition. This is an excellent book, I have a newer edition too so decided to sell this one. if you look up a condition example arthritis it will describe this condition, then offer advice on nutrients and herbs, recommendations, considerations, and comments. I did find a photo of this edition but is selling upwards to $25.00. I am asking $10.00

The Doctors Book of Home Remedies by Rodale Thousands of Tips and Techniques Anyone can use to heal evereyday health problems. Hardcover 1990 edition, very good condtion, I always enjoy reading any of the Rodale books and this is another good one. can view here This is another one of the books where the price is all over the place up in the 40.00 range--asking $12.00 for mine

The Yeast Connection Cookbook by Crook and Jones a guide to good nutrition and better health, alot of gluten free recipes in this book, soft cover very good condition can view here another book where the price is all over the place--asking $10.00

wow-I just looked up a book that is selling from under 4.00 jumped up to 30.00 than 50.00 than 2,000.00-just wrote the seller why this selling price-needless to say more research on that one-lol

Sanyo Microwave Bake and Broil Cookbook hardcover,spiral book 1985. This cookbook came with a convection microwave oven we bought. Trouble is whenever I used the convection feature with aluminum foil-I would goof and hit microwave-after fixing it twice Larry said no more-and I really did love that oven too lol. I didn't expect to find this book listed but I did here good recipes in here I am asking $15.00

I also have several years of Veggie Life would like $1.00 an issue for, they are full of excellent recipes

autumn 2001

spring 2002 summer 2002 autumn 2002 winter 2002-2003

spring 2003 summer 2003 autumn 2003 winter 2003-2004

spring 2004 summer 2004 autumn 2004 winter 2004-2005

spring 2005 summer 2005 autumn 2005 winter 2005-2006

spring 2006 summer 2006

and an extra issue of winter 2003-2004

Monday, December 7, 2009

It's Chicken Tuesdays---Slow Cooker Style

With the busy days during the Christmas season upon us, get out those crock pots to make your days a little easier.

Rosemary Chicken


Don't skimp on the garlic here, the gentle simmering in the slow cooker with transform them in a mellow and smooth taste.


Non stick cooking spray
1 � pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts and thighs
8 or 9 ounce package frozen artichoke hearts
� chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
� cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
� teaspoon black pepper
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1 Tablespoon cold water
Lemon wedges (optional)


1. Coat an unheated large non-stick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat over medium heat.

2. Brown chicken, half at a time, in hot skillet.

3. In a 3 � to 4 quart slow cooker combine frozen artichoke hearts, onion, and garlic.

4. In a small bowl combine chicken broth, rosemary, lemon peel, and pepper. Pour over vegetables in slow cooker.

5. Add browned chicken; spoon some of the artichoke mixture over the chicken.

6. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 6 to 7 hours or on high-heat setting for 3 to 3 � hours.

7. Using a slotted spoon, transfer chicken and artichokes to a serving platter, reserving cooking liquid. Cover chicken and artichokes with foil; keep warm.

8. If using low-heat setting, turn to high-heat setting.

9. For sauce, in a small bowl combine cornstarch and the cold water. Stir into liquid in slow cooker. Cover and cook about 15 minutes more or until slightly thickened.

10. Spoon sauce over chicken and artichokes. If desired, serve with lemon wedges.

found this one here

and from Food Network I found:

Chicken Chili

Picture of Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Recipe


  • 2 pounds ground chicken, coarsely ground preferred
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder, plus 2 teaspoons
  • 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 (28-ounce) cans diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 medium sweet potato (about 10 ounces), peeled and shredded
  • 1 (15-ounce) can low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup instant tapioca (recommended: Minute tapioca)
  • 1 to 2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce with seeds, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup lager-style beer, optional
  • Toppings: Sour cream, shredded Cheddar or Jack cheese, chopped scallions, and chopped pickled jalapenos


Put the chicken in the slow cooker. Add 3 tablespoons of the chili powder and all the rest of the ingredients, except the beer. Stir everything together, cover, and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours.

Just before serving, stir in the remaining 2 teaspoons of chili powder, the beer, if using, and season with more salt and pepper, to taste, if desired. Divide the chili among warm bowls. Serve with the topping of your choice.

Know-How: Stirring in chili powder right before serving brightens the flavor of the chili.

Copyright (c) 2007 Television Food Network, G.P., All Rights Reserved.

Be sure and visit Mama Bear to take the chicken tuesdays tour-I will link up with her tomorrow

Sunday, December 6, 2009

My Cookbook Project

Just finished going thru and reorganizing my cookbooks, herbs, and natural healing books.

These are on industrial type shelving, they match in with my restaurant Wolf stove, and they have wide shelves and are very sturdy-so I can fill em up heavy and not worry about it-lol

For now, I didn't make alot of new room, especially since the I have a couple shelves on the bottom with some appliances-my champion juicer, pasta maker, big George Foreman grill, attachments to cuisanart and meat grinder, and a meat slicer too. Hopefully these will all find a home in kitchen cabinets-once Larry gets those built.

I did, reorganize, get rid of stuff not needed on these shelves, and I can actually see some sense of groupings by subject manner, and I can get to my books easier. So I am happy about this, I may actually be able to find a cookbook title-lol

I will add a couple more titles tomorrow morning early, but no herbs, I do have a couple books on natural healing and candida guidebooks.

Another thing I collect, and I finally quit buying food magazines-as I have always gone thru these magazines and clip recipes I think I will use-and then I put these in folders by subject manner. This collection is way out of hand as well. I already went thru some of the folders and have filled a garbage bag full of paper. Just too much, as these folders are not so I can get to them easy. They were shoved on the bottom shelf where I can't really use them, so will need to find a better sollution. Working on reducing the volume of these at least.

cloudy today, so can't make my christmas candy, today is my football day, but the Packers are on tonight, and the Vikings are on tomorrow night-so I have the chiefs and the broncos on-gotta have a little football-lol

Larry's working on putting in our oak doors to our rooms, that will be something-doors-hehe

Thursday, December 3, 2009

More Cookbooks Listed

Also see this post for titles still available

Better Homes and Gardens Creative Cake Decorating I have the hard cover edition 1983. this is a thin little book, but packed with good recipes and clever ideas for cakes can view here on the paper back edition the price was all over the place up to $45.00. I would like to find this one a good home so it can be used. very good condition. Asking $12.00

Chicago Sweet Tooth by Ann Gerber hard cover 1985 first edition. this is a book with recipes from prominent Chicago people-has some very good recipes this book has no jacket in very good condition asking $10.00

Light Desserts Beatrice Ojakangas hard cover 1989 by oxmoor house. In good condition but has two little spots on the spine that look like wax. asking $5.00

Cooking Light Cookbook by Oxmoor House I have four of these all in like new condition. all very nice books 1989 asking $10.00

1990 asking $10.00

1991 asking $10.00

1992 asking $10.00

If you take all 4 of these books will sell for $36.00

The Frugal Gourmet by Jeff Smith this is a paperback in very good condition 21st printing 1990 based on his tv series asking $3.00

The Frugal Gourmet Cooks 3 Ancient Cuisines China Greece Rome by Jeff Smith I have a first edition hardcover 1989 copy. no paper jacket. However, this is in fair condition and not in gift quality condition. has a few stains, and some of the pages on the bottom edges are creased. It has really good recipes in it, so is a nice book for personal use. asking $3.00 (if you would like photos ask)

The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American by Jeff Smith hard cover first edition 1987, with paper jacket-it does have the price of $12.00 printed in the corner with permanent marker-other than that in very good condition. asking $10.00

TVP Cookbook by Dorothy Bates paperback 1991 in very good condition. This is a very good little book with recipes that uses the texturized vegetable protein and explains how to use it. (this is a protein food product made from soybeans) can view here asking $5.00

Home Cooking with Amy Coleman volume 2 this is a book sponsored by Kitchenaid and based on a show that was on PBS. This is a pretty book with very good recipes in it. very gourmet but useable recipes. asking $5.00

Fresh Meals by Rodale paper back 2003, recipes from the editors of organic style magazine. very good condition, a nice book. this is another one where the price was all over the place up to $45.00 asking $5.00 couldn't find a photo.

Mom's Family Recipes the complete menu cookbook. soft cover 1998 by Kappa books printed in usa, couldn't find a photo or an author. This is one of those "feel good" books, at least to one that enjoys sitting down with a cup of coffee and reading cookbooks.the pages are a bit yellowed-a very homey feeling book good recipes too asking $8.00

Vegetarian Times Complete Cookbook by the editors of Vegetarian Times. this is a large soft cover book with over 600 meatless dishes 1995 like new condition can view here and look inside the book too asking $10.00

Taste of Home's Sargento Recipe Collection 50th anniversary cheese cookbook this is a special edition with over 160 recipes-all cheese related. this is a glossy cover special magazine edition. 2003 no ads I couldn't find a price for this, a very nice collection of recipes asking $3.00

Womans Day Specials Slow Cooking a magazine new ideas series 2004 has 65 family friendly recipes of soups, stews, roasts and more. will throw this one in to the first person that asks for it when buying a book from this list, or asking $2.00

Thanks for looking, I prefer payment thru paypal (as money is immediate and I can ship the next day too) but will accept a check (this way will wait a week til check clears), I will ship book rate-media mail-cheapest way for books thru usps

Holiday Recipe Share Fridays---Christmas Cookies

I have been getting some yummy looking links for Christmas Cookies this week so, I would like to share. I have not made these recipes yet.

Chocolate Mint Checkerboard Cookies

Chocolate Mint Checkerboard Cookies


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 ounce semisweet chocolate, grated (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1/2 teaspoon mint extract
  • Green paste food coloring


1. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, and salt. Beat until well combined, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in remaining flour.

2. Divide dough in half. Into one half, stir in the cocoa powder and grated chocolate until combined; set aside. Into the second dough, stir in the mint extract and enough green paste food coloring to tint the dough green.

3. Shape each portion of dough into a 7x2x2-inch brick. Wrap bricks in plastic wrap or waxed paper. Chill at least 2 hours or until dough is firm enough to slice. With a long sharp knife, cut each brick lengthwise into four slices. (You will have four pieces from each color of dough that are each 7 inches long and 2 inches wide.)

4. Stack four pieces of dough together, alternating colors. (You will have two bricks, each with four layers.) Gently press together dough to seal layers. If necessary, wrap bricks in plastic wrap or waxed paper and chill for 30 minutes or until dough is firm enough to slice.

5. Using a long sharp knife, cut each log lengthwise into four slices (Each piece will have four layers in alternating colors.) Stack four pieces of dough together, alternating colors, for a checkerboard effect. Trim edges as needed to straighten sides and ends. If necessary, wrap logs in plastic wrap or waxed paper and chill for 30 minutes or until firm enough to slice.

6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Using a sharp knife, cut logs crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place slices, cut sides down, 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

7. Bake in the preheated oven for 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are just firm. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool. Makes about 50 cookies.

To Store: Layer cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

from here

Chocolate-Coffee Ribbons

Chocolate Coffee Ribbons


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons instant Swiss-style coffee powder
  • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled


1. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour, Makes about 2-1/2 cups of dough.

2. Divide dough into thirds. Knead coffee powder into one portion of the dough. Stir chocolate into one portion of the dough (knead if necessary). Leave remaining portion plain. Divide each dough portion in half. Cover and chill about 1 hour or until easy to handle.

3. On waxed paper, roll one portion of the chocolate dough into an 8x6-inch rectangle (keep remaining dough chilled); place waxed paper with dough rectangle on a cookie sheet, dough side up. On another sheet of waxed paper, roll one portion of the plain dough into an 8x6-inch rectangle. Invert plain dough onto chocolate dough; peel off waxed paper. On same piece of waxed paper, roll one portion of the coffee dough into an 8x6-inch rectangle. Invert coffee dough onto plain dough; peel off waxed paper. Repeat with remaining chocolate, plain, and coffee doughs to form a six-layer stack. Press together lightly. Wrap stack in plastic wrap. Chill for 1 hour.

4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Trim edges of the dough stack. Cut dough stack in half lengthwise, forming two rectangles. Cut each rectangle crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange slices, cut sides down, 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 8 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; cool. Makes about 48 cookies.

To Bake Ahead: Prepare, bake, and cool cookies as directed. Layer cookies between waxed paper in an airtight container. Cover; seal. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. Used chilled dough directly form the refrigerator. For frozen dough, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then use.

from here

Chocolate S'Mores

Chocolate Smores


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1- 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1- 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg white, slightly beaten (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons water (optional)
  • Coarse sugar or granulated sugar (optional)
  • 12- 1/2 1.55-ounce milk chocolate bars
  • 25 large marshmallows, roasted if desired


1. For cookies: In a very large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar, the baking powder, and salt. Beat until well mixed, scraping side of bowl occasionally. Beat in melted chocolate until combined. Beat in eggs, milk, and vanilla. Beat in cocoa powder. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour. Divide dough in half. Cover; chill about 1 hour or until dough is easy to handle.

2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. On a lightly floured surface, roll one portion of the dough into a 13-inch square. If desired, use a fluted pastry wheel to trim the edges of the dough square. Using fluted pastry wheel, cut dough square into twenty-five 2-1/2- to 3-inch squares. Using a 1-1/2-inch tree, bell, or snowman cutter, make a cutout in the center of half of the squares.* Place dough squares on ungreased cookie sheet.

3. If desired, in a small bowl, whisk together egg white and the water; brush tops of squares lightly with egg white mixture and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or just until tops are firm. Let stand on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool.

4. To assemble s'mores, break each chocolate bar in half crosswise; place one half chocolate bar atop each solid cookie. Top each with a marshmallow. If using roasted marshmallows, top marshmallows with a cutout cookie; press down gently and serve immediately. If using unroasted marshmallows, arrange about six** of the marshmallow-topped cookies on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave on 100% power (high) for 20 to 30 seconds or until marshmallows are puffed and chocolate just starts to melt on the edges. Top each with a cookie with a cutout center. Press down gently and serve immediately. Repeat with remaining cookies, chocolate, and marshmallows. Makes 25 s'mores.

*Test Kitchen Tip: Bake small dough cutouts on an ungreased cookie sheet in the 375�F oven for 3 to 5 minutes or just until tops are firm. Transfer to wire racks; let cool.

**Test Kitchen Tip: To microwave one cookie at a time, cook on 100% power (high) about 10 seconds.

TO STORE: Prepare cookies as directed through Step 3. Layer baked cookies between pieces of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw cookies, if frozen. Assemble s'mores as directed in Step 4.

from here

Lemon Cream Cheese Cutout Cookies

Lemon Cream Cheese Cut Outs


  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 3-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 2 cups sifted powdered sugar (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons warm water (optional)
  • 4 teaspoons meringue powder (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (optional)


1. Stir together flour, spices, and salt. In a medium mixing bowl, beat together butter, cream cheese, and sugar with an electric mixer until well combined. Beat in milk and lemon peel. Add dry ingredients, beating at low speed just until combined. Chill, covered, for 2 to 3 hours or until firm. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to about 1/8-inch thickness. Cut into shapes using cutters.

2. Place on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Cool on wire racks.

3. If desired, in a medium mixing bowl combine powdered sugar, meringue powder,* and cream of tartar. Add 3 tablespoons cold water. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until mixture is combined, then on medium to high speed for 7 to 10 minutes or until mixture forms stiff peaks. (If mixture seems stiff while beating, add water, 1/2 teaspoon at a time. Icing should be fairly thick for piping. For a thinner, glazing consistency, stir in a little more water after beating.) Spread over cookies. (When not using, keep icing tightly covered to prevent drying.) Makes about 60, 2-1/2-inch cookies.

*Note: One brand of meringue powder is Wilton. Look for the powder at kitchen, cake-decorating, and crafts shops.

from here

Minty Cocoa Fudge Sandwich


  • 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder or unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/3 cups butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup cooking oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • Sugar
  • 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 10-ounce package mint-flavor semisweet chocolate pieces*
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped


1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the 1-1/2 cups sugar and the oil. Beat until well mixed. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until combined. Add flour mixture; beat until combined. Cover and chill about 1 hour or until dough is easy to handle.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place balls 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Dip the bottom of a glass in additional sugar and flatten each cookie. Bake in preheated oven for 7 to 9 minutes or just until firm. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool.

4. For filling: In a small saucepan, combine sweetened condensed milk, chocolate pieces, and unsweetened chocolate. Cook and stir over medium heat until melted and smooth. Remove from heat. Let stand about 1 hour or until cool.

5. Spoon a rounded measuring teaspoon of the filling on the bottom of each of half of the cookies. Top with remaining cookies, flat sides down, pressing lightly together. Makes about 36 sandwich cookies.

6. *Test Kitchen Tip: If you can't find mint-flavor semisweet chocolate pieces, use 1 1/2 cups regular semisweet chocolate pieces and stir 1/4 teaspoon mint extract into the melted chocolate mixture.

7. To Store: Place filled cookies in a single layer in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months

from here

Happy Baking!!

Christmas_Goose_2253-T.jpg Christmas Goose image by ksyvie

Scam at Wal-Marts (all locations)

Link this is a good to know read-from Frank

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

More Cookbooks

copied from my first Nov. 30th post-what is left

James Norwood Pratt's Tea Lover's Treasury. seen here I have the first edition 1982 asking $5.00

Vegan Nutrition: Pure and Simple by Michael Klaper M.D. soft cover this the 3rd printing 1987 seen here mine is like new asking $12.00

Turn It Up! by Janet Hazen another very nice paper back book, like new 1995 first edtion copy recipes are all Hot and Spicey seen here asking $4.00

copied from Nov 30th post

The Cuisine of the Sun by Mireille Johnson classical french cooking from Nice and Provence. mine is the 1976 edition, hard cover, paper jacket shows some wear do to age can see a photo here asking $8.00

The Pleasures of Italian Cooking by Romeo Salta Book Club edition 1962, harcover, very good condition, jacket cover normal wear due to age. can see here asking $8.00

Cool Entertaining by Irma Rhode first edition copy 1976, hard cover good condition. I couldn't find a photo of this one-a nice book asking $5.00

Mexican Cooking by Ruth Kershner and Josette Koch 1978, hard cover, good looking recipes couldn't find a photo on this one either, this is a thin book 78 pages, jacket cover has one tear asking $5.00

Trader Vic's Pacific Island Cookbook, hardcover 1968, paper jacket worn from age, book in very good condition. I have had this book forever- can see here asking $5.00


newly added

James Beard American Cookery 1972 soft cover edition, like new-excellent book can view here asking $15.00

The Frugal Gourmet On Our Immigrant Ancestors by Jeff Smith hard cover 1990 edition paper jacket not torn, in very good condition can view here the price on this book was all over the place for a very good copy-$1.99 to more than a $100.00 and up. In my opinion this book is not worth a 100.00 asking price, however it is a very nice books with lots of recipes from our immigrant ancestors--- so I decided to ask $15.00 for mine


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