Friday, July 21, 2017

Santa Picture

I don't know if I have ever taken a picture with Santa!  Don't recall seeing any from my younger days.

For a change why not try to get the family----or just you and the grandkids---together and go to the mall or wherever Santa is and get a family picture taken. 

That might be an ideal for Christmas cards this year!

Never to old for Santa!

Breakfast Casserole

This is a casserole that I make often to take to work.

1 can crescent rolls
ground sausage
green peppers
3 to 4 eggs
grated cheddar cheese

Using a 9x13 dish spray the bottom.  Unroll the crescent rolls and put into bottom of dish pressing the seams together.

Cook your sausage with the onions, green peppers and mushrooms.  I season it with salt, pepper and some Cajun seasoning.  Drain when done. Put the mixture onto the rolls.

Break the eggs into a bowl and beat.  Stir in some milk and stir together.  Pour over the sausage mixture.  I put about 1/2 the bag of cheese on now.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes.  When the crust is brown. Put the rest of the cheese on top when it comes out of the oven.

Sorry not more specific but haven't seen the original recipe in years and I just do it this way.
You can change the toppings and amount of eggs you put on.  Also adjust the seasonings.  Have used red pepper flakes too.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Snowman Containers

Purchase 3 containers that fit on top each other with each being a different size (like 3 snowman balls).  They could be square or bowls.  You can give goodies--cookies, candies, rubs, or seasoning salts, chex mix, etc. in a container.

The head put on 2 black button eyes, a piece of fleece or ribbon around the bottom of it for a scarf, and on the other 2 put a big button in the center.   Maybe try packaging or duct tape on bottom to hold together.

The receiver will get useful containers to use over and over and the goodies will be enjoyed.

Tropical Candy Drops

3/4 cup macadamia nuts
3/4 cup shredded coconut toasted
8 ounces vanilla flavored  candy coating or white chocolate baking squares (with cocoa butter) coarsely chopped
1 cup tropical blend mixed dried fruit

Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, set aside.  In a medium saucepan combine the above ingredients and 1 tablespoon shortening.  Cook and stir over low heat for 8 to 10 minutes or until candy coating is melted.  Remove from heat.  Quickly drop mixture by teaspoonfuls about 1 inch apart onto the wax paper.  Chill candies on cookie sheet about 30 minutes or until set.  Makes about 35 candies.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

New tradition?

At your holiday dinner hand out paper star cut outs (construction paper, brown sacks, etc) and have each person write down what they're the happiest for since last Christmas and date them.  The front could be decorated with paints, words (joy, etc...).  Be sure they sign them.  Punch a hole in them and put ribbon thru and hang on the tree.

Hot Cocoa Nog

1 qt. eggnog
3 cups milk
1/2 cup chocolate syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Combine eggnog, milk and chocolate syrup in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Stir constantly until heated through.  Add vanilla and nutmeg.

Serves 4

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Chair Decoration

Fill Victorian-style paper cones with old fashioned hard candies or tiny surprises (lip chap, lotion, bubble baths), ornaments.  Then hang from a chair with ribbon for a charming welcome at a holiday meal for family/friends.

Cranberry Relish

I ran across this while reading cookbooks awhile back but haven't tried it yet.

1 pkg. washed cranberries
2 whole washed oranges
Put through meat grinder.  Add 1 cup of sugar.  Let set overnight.  Use 1/2 the mixture with large carton of whipped topping.  Freeze other half for later.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Photo Pillow

Photocopy a favorite snapshot onto iron on transfer paper available at craft and office supply stores.  iron onto white fabric, frame with a ribbon border and sew onto a pillow.  Or make a pillow by sewing photo to a bigger piece of fabric and a backing-sew 3 1/2 to 3 3/4 sides, stuff and then slipstitch shut.

Not a sewer?  Use a photo and put onto a sweatshirt. 

Can enlarge picture or use several and put onto project.

Wild West Rub

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
5 tablespoons pepper
4 teaspoons garlic powder
4 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon bouillon granules
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

Mix all ingredients together.  Store in a plastic zipping bag or airtight container.  Makes about 1/2 cup.

Attach instructions.

Sprinkle desired amount over meat-refrigerate for at least 4 hours or longer to allow flavors to blend completely.  Grill to desired doneness.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Teigan and Boomer

This was a picture from this past week one night.  Teigan got ready to fall asleep and she went and got Boomer (her sissy) and they both fell asleep on couch.  Love this picture.  Boomer was born in a litter at our house before they were married so Teigan and Boomer are pretty close.

Flea Market, Goodwill, and Rummage

Always be on the lookout for baskets, plain white plates (platters), cake plates, silverware (big spoons, pie servers etc) that you can use to regift with food items, or bath items.  Spoons to tie onto homemade salsa, jellies, jam with raffia.

Butter Brickle Cookies

18 oz. pkg. butter pecan cake mix
2 eggs beaten
1/2 cup margarine, softened
8 oz pkg. toffee baking bits

Mix together all ingredients.  Drop by tablespoonfuls onto greased baking sheets.  Bake at 350 degrees for 9 to 10 minutes.  Makes 3 1/2 to 4 dozen.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Vanilla Powder

If you are having trouble finding vanilla powder that is in some recipes---substitute French vanilla flavored coffee creamer in its place.  Has the same rich creamy taste.

Garden Herb Bread Blend

1/3 cup dried parsley flakes
1/3 cup dried minced onions
2 1/2 tablespoons dried basil
2 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Blend ingredients together, then package in an airtight container or a plastic zipping bag.  Makes 3/4 cup or enough for 6 loaves of bread. 

Attach recipe:
Add 4 teaspoons garden herb blend to a 16 oz. package dry hot roll mix.  Follow instructions on hot roll mix box for mixing, kneading and resting.  Shape dough into loaves or follow instructions on box for rolls. Allow dough to rise.  Bake dough in greased baking pans for 35 to 40 minutes at 375 degrees.  Brush tops with margarine.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Smooth As Silk Fruit Dip

8 oz pkg. fat free cream cheese softened
1/2 cup non-fat sour cream
6 Tablespoons sugar
4 Tablespoons skim milk
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth.  Blend in sour cream.  Add sugar, milk and almond extract.  Mix until well blended.  Refrigerate and serve with assorted fruits for dipping.

Bath Bundles

1 cup Epsom Salt
1 teaspoon essential oil, such as lavender or peppermint or scent of your choice
2 drops of food coloring, color to match your scent (if you don't want to use food coloring you can buy colors in the department for homemade soaps)

Grind up the Epsom salt in a food processor until salts resemble a fine powder.  In a bowl, mix salts, oil and food coloring until completely blended.  Spread the mixture evenly on a baking sheet and let dry overnight.  Divide into 4 plastic bags.

Wrap a bag in a terry cloth washcloth and drop it up and tie with a ribbon.

Use 1 bag per bath.

Years ago I use to make bath salts and put them in quart jars.  I made rose, and a rain one.  It called for glycerin also but I have misplaced the recipe.  People loved them.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Name Tag

For a name tag purchase some of the round tags with metal rims that can be found at office supply stores and probably craft stores.  Decorate with rubber stamps, maybe a beaded or glitter initial, a photo of the person who the gift is for.  Can be used for an ornament then.  Put a ribbon or hanger on it.

I think it would be neat to do that with baby or pictures of the person when younger and let the present giver outer try to guess them.

Broccoli Ham and Cheese Strata

14 slices white or wheat bread, crust trimmed
1 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
10 oz pkg. chopped broccoli, thawed and drained
1/4 cup onion, chopped
1 cup cooked ham, chopped
1 medium tomato, peeled, seeded & chopped
5 eggs
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cup milk

Butter a 13X9 baking dish.  Layer 7 slices of bread on bottom of dish.  Sprinkle half of cheddar cheese over bread slices.  Next, layer thawed chopped broccoli, onion, ham and tomato over cheese and bread layers.  Top with remaining cheese and bread slices.  In mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients, beat well.  Pour egg mixture over layered ingredients in baking dish.  Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 40-50 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Serves 8-10

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Peppermint Foot Scrub

For tired aching feet.  Maybe try to find a red/white stripe pair of soxs or the fuzzy soxs. 

Put 2 cups of sea salt in a plastic bag
Vial of peppermint essential oil
tuck both into a pair of soxs put into each other and tie with a ribbon, attaching a jingle bell.

Mix 1/4 cup of sea salt with 3 drops peppermint oil.  Rub on feet and leave on a few minutes then soak them in warm water.

Fancy Fruit Pizza

18 oz pkg. refrigerated sugar cookie dough
3 oz, pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups assorted fresh fruit, sliced into bite-size pieces
1/3 cup apple jelly, melted

To form crust, press cookie dough into a 12" pizza pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden, then set aside to cool.   Beat together cream cheese, brown sugar, sour cream and vanilla. Spread on cooled cookie crust.  Arrange sliced fruit on top and brush melted jelly over fruit.  Refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

Maybe a few pecans sprinkled over the top before the jelly? Or walnuts?

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Pumpkin Pecan Tassies

 1 -15 oz. package rolled refrigerated unbaked piecrust (2 crust)
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup half-and-half light cream or milk
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Let piecrusts stand according to directions.  Preheat oven to 350. Unroll crust.  Using a 2 1/2" round cookie cutter cut 12 rounds from each pie crust.  Gently ease pastry rounds into the bottoms and up the sides of 24 ungreased 1 3/4" muffin cups, set aside.

For filling, in a bowl, stir together pumpkin, granulated sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.  Add egg, stir until combined.  Gradually add half and half (or milk).  Stir just until combined.

For pecan topping, stir together pecans, brown sugar and melted butter.

Spoon about 2 teaspoons filling into each pastry lined cup.  Top each with a scant 1 teaspoon pecan topping.  Bake about 35 minutes or until filling is set and crust is golden brown.  Remove tassies from muffin cups and cool completely on a wire rack.  Makes 24 tassies.

Make ahead directions: Place tassies in a single layer in an airtight container, cover. Store in the fridge for up to 2 days or freeze up to 3 months.  Thaw about 1 hour at room temperature before packaging as a gift.

A cake cover

If giving a full size cake as a gift, purchase a hat box. Plain cardboard one.  Either wrap the box with wrapping paper, use scrapbook paper, or paint it and then use a sponge to put another color on it.  Can use fringe, beading  or the likes if you want to decorate it up.

Put the cake on the lid part and then the big part over it.

I sure miss not being able to post pictures of what I am talking about!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Fried Raviolis

1 (16 oz.) pkg. ravioli, thawed
2 eggs beaten
1/4 cup water
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 cup flour
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
Mix water and eggs in one bowl, set aside.  Mix spices with bread crumbs in another bowl set aside. Put flour in its own bowl.  Dip raviolis in flour, then egg mixture, then into bread crumbs.  Deep -fry in 350 degree oil till brown.

Twig Decorations

Brush craft glue onto twigs and sprinkle with frosty silver or white glitter.  Epsom salt can me used too. Arrange twigs in a vase.  Maybe put some lights down inside or a few light up twigs you buy.  lights down around the vase on a twig wreath.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Cappuccino Mix

I have never had a cappuccino--don't do coffee but might-----possibly try this.  Nice mix to do in mason jars if you know any cappuccino drinkers.

1 cup instant coffee creamer
1 cup instant chocolate drink mix
2/3 cup instant coffee crystals
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Combine all ingredients, mix well.  Store in an airtight container.  To prepare one serving, add 3 tablespoons mix to 6 ounces hot water.  Stir well.

Plywood Decorations

I can remember when I was very young and several summer nights when my sister and I were in bed you would see dad outside with a projector and a Christmas picture blown up on a piece of plywood and he would be tracing it and then cut it out and paint for Christmas decorations.  Had Charlie Brown characters for awhile and several other things.  I keep buying coloring books with big pictures in order to do this sometime BUT..... time is never there for it!  Would love to do cartoon themes from what my granddaughter watches.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Cookie Salad

1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding
1 cup cold milk
1 (8 oz.) Cool Whip
1 can crushed , drained pineapple
2 small cans mandarin oranges drained
1 pkg. Keebler Fudge Striped Cookies
Mix pudding mix with milk.  Add cool whip.  Add pineapple, then oranges.  Crush the cookies and before serving stir in 2/3 of crushed cookies and sprinkle the remainder of cookies on the salad.

I know this is a repeat BUT

I think maybe every year for Christmas In July I post about gift giving for the garden.  This is the time of year to look for that stuff.  Several stores like Big Lots, Hobby Lobby and Dollar General are clearancing some of it. Bird feeders, little decorative stakes, wind chimes, fairy garden items, plant stands, gloves, gazing balls etc.....

Last year I gave 4 gifts that were a metal chair that said Welcome on it.  It was at least 36" and could be inside or out and they all loved it. 

Friday, July 7, 2017

Cheap Wreaths

If you are in the area to get honeysuckle vine you can gather it and make your wreaths.  Fall is the time to gather it. Nothing beats free.

Payday Popcorn

In a skillet melt 4 tablespoons of butter and then add in either 2 king size or 5 regular size payday candy bars chopped up.  When all is melted pour over microwave popped popcorn. 

A customer gave us this recipe about a week ago when he was in the bank.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Lid ornament

Get 2 lids the same size--such as mayonnaise
Get 2 Christmas cards that are alike and putting the lids back to back by gluing but also put some lace inbetween so it is out and a hanging ribbon.
Glue cards inside the lids.

My son did this back in 1st or 2nd grade and used a card with deer on it.  They put some cotton inside to look like it was walking on snow.  Some of the snow glitter would be pretty to add.

Sorry no picture--hope it makes sense the way I explained it.

Mississippi Fun Dip

This year I am looking up recipes that I would like to try for the holidays.

1 loaf Italian bread
2 8 oz pkgs. cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
2 cups cooked ham, diced
4-oz can diced green chiles, drained
1/4 cup green onions diced

Slice off top of loaf lengthwise and scoop out the bread inside--reserve it for dipping.  Combine the other ingredients.  Blend well and spoon mixture into loaf.  Replace top of the loaf wrap in aluminum foil.  Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes.  Unwrap carefully and remove top of loaf.  Serve with corn chip scoops and reserved bread pieces.  Serves 8 to 10.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Fancy Cheese Ball

Another recipe I have not tried. 

2 (8 oz.) cream cheese
1 medium can fruit cocktail drained
1 small pkg. French vanilla instant pudding
Slivered almonds
Vanilla wafers
1/8 cup orange juice
Blend pudding mix, cheese, and orange juice.  Add fruit.  Blend well. Chill at least 4 hours.  Roll in almonds.  Serve with vanilla wafers.

Odd Package to wrap?

Use a bath towel.  Regular, over sized or even a beach towel.  Some stores might have beach towels on clearance now.  I know one year for Christmas I gave almost everyone beach towels.  Kohls had them super cheap on line at one point.  Some were like 2 or 3 dollars.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Gift for the feet

Find a cute pair of soxs or the fuzzy soxs and fill each one with items to pamper the feet.  A stone to file the dead skin, lotion, pair of long clippers, feet soaking solution, polish, polish remover, maybe a gift card for a pedicure. Tie the pair together with a ribbon.

Maybe a toe ring if the receiver would like that.

Cranberry Snow Candy

16 oz. package white chocolate morsels
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups walnuts chopped
Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler.  When melted stir in the cranberries and walnuts.  Drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper until set.  Makes several dozen.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Cheesy Cocktail Swirls

1 pkg. crescent rolls
3 oz. cream cheese
2 Tbsps. chopped onion
1 tsp. milk
6 slices crisply cooked bacon
Parmesan cheese
Mix together cream cheese, onion, and milk.  Pinch 2 crescent roll triangles together to form a rectangle.  Spread cheese mixture over top.  Sprinkle with bacon.  Roll each rectangle from the long side, cut into 7 to 8 pieces.  Layer with cut side up on cookie sheet.  Sprinkle with Parmesan.  Bake at 375 degrees for 11 to 13 minutes.

Egg Yolk Paint

Let the kids paint unbaked cookies with egg yolk paint.

For each color you are doing beat the egg yolk until smooth, then stir in 5 to 6 drops of food coloring.

Using a new paintbrush paint and then bake as usual.

I have not tried this but thinking it would be fun for kids.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

For Christmas visitors

Fill disposable icing cones  (bags for frosting) with small treats and place in a wire cupcake stand for your guest to take when they leave.

Rocky Road Candy

2 cups (1 bag) semisweet chocolate chips

1/2 bag colored miniature marshmallows

1/2 cup pecans, chopped

Melt chocolate over low heat, or use double boiler or microwave.
Stir in marshmallows and pecans.  Spoon onto waxed paper.  Form into log.  Refrigerate for 2 hours.  Slice into 1/2" pieces.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Shredded filler paper

If you have a shredder and need filler for a box---make your own.   Use the comics, or buy the colored paper, or tissue paper and shred.  Even the grocery adds will add some color into it.  Cheaper than the pre packaged shred.  Hmmm......I don't have a shredder.

Chocolate Cherry Bars

Welcome to Christmas In July!!!!!!!

Last year my husband was down and I didn't do the daily posting in July and this year I am having issues posting pictures so.......

I will try to post a recipe daily and a tidbit or something on Christmas!

I am always looking for new items for our Christmas trays we do and thought this sounded pretty good--will have to try it before December.

Chocolate Cherry Bars

1/2 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
12 oz. pkg. milk chocolate chips
10 oz. jar maraschino cherries, drained and chopped

Spread melted butter evenly in a 9X13 baking pan, Stir in graham cracker crumbs pressing down to form a crust.  Pour  condensed milk over top, sprinkle with chocolate chips and chopped cherries.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.  Cool completely then slice into bars.  Makes about 2 dozen.

I think some pecans or your choice might be good on the top also.