Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

My Christmas wish to you is a year of joy, peace, and harmony.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

And a sprinkle of sugar . . .

This is the first year I haven't made royal icing and tinted many small batches in Christmas colors

 and they taste just as good and look just as pretty

Two batches

made a lot of cookies

A glass of ice cold milk is all I need


2/3 cup butter flavored crisco
3/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lemon extract
1 large egg
2 cups self rising flour

Mix crisco, sugar, milk and extracts until creamy.  Add egg, mix well, add flour until until mixed.  Do not over mix the batter.  Bake at 375 until done.

From there, let your imagination and Christmas creativity run wild!

Christmas Countdown

Friday, December 16, 2011

Biscotti Biscotti Biscotti ~~ No peeking MOM!

Red Velvet Biscotti

Gingerbread biscotti

Chocolate peanut butter biscotti

Vanilla Irish Cream

Honey cinnamon butter
2 sticks room temperature butter
1 cup honey
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon

Mix until fluffy

4 ounce jars with labels from lollychops

I always give my mom biscotti for Christmas so you better not be peeking!

I didn't want to bore you with a bunch of biscotti recipes so send me a message if you'd like any of the recipes.

Merry Christmas!!

Lots of request for the red velvet biscotti.  Just click on this link

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's all over but the partying

It's official!!  As of 8:34 a.m. this morning, I finished my last final as a graduate student.  It's bittersweet.  I have enjoyed meeting new people and gaining new friends and will miss the "student life" but am so excited to start the next chapter of my life.

Even though commencement isn't until after the spring semester, I'm excited!

I'll take a minute to breathe.

Then start worrying about getting into grad school!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Baking Day ~~ Homemade gifts

I talked to my mom and sister earlier today.  Sis had gone to mom and dad's for the weekend and was elbow deep in flour.  They'd stirred and sifted and baked all morning.  I stayed home to study for my last two finals but was able to get a few sweets made this morning.

Peanut butter fudge is Mav's favorite.  

Peanut Butter Fudge
1 1/2 sticks real butter
5 oz can evaporated milk
3 cups sugar

Cook for four minutes or until it reaches 234 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Remove from heat, add 1 package peanut butter chips, a teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 jar marshmallow cream. 

Pour into a buttered 9 X 9 pan until firm. 

* You can substitute chocolate chips for the peanut butter chips.

The Naked Gingerbread Men

Just hanging out and waiting to be iced

Again, one of Mav's favorites.  He requested them this morning before 8:30 . . .

Remember the homemade mustard relish?  The boys got off the bus early this week and said the bus driver had asked if I was giving out the mustard again.  I had already planned on giving her chunky apple butter, but she may just get two gifts instead of one!

Do you enjoy receiving homemade gifts?  I sure do!  I enjoy giving them, but always wonder if the recipient feels the same way.  What kind of homemade gifts have you given/received?
I've given fleece no sew blankets in school or favorite colors, baked goods, canned goodies like jams or jellies, mustards, etc.  I've also made my own vanilla extract but because I couldn't find an affordable source for small glass bottles, I may not be able to give this.  I've also given the brown sugar hand scrub and the peppermint hand scrub.  I sure wish I knew how to make scarves because that would definitely be a gift!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Archery Club

Littlest squirt is participating in his school's archery club.  He really seems to enjoy it.

Although he didn't hit the target each time, he never gave up

I was so glad hubby was able to go

If you aren't shooting, the bow rests on the toe

Ready . . . aim . . .


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Gumdrops, peppermint, and sprinkles

Do you have a Christmas memory from your childhood that just really stands out?  One that you remember vividly and only improves with age?  One that you've told your children?

Mrs. Catherine Mosley was my 2nd grade teacher at Cottage Grove Elementary School.  She had the most amazing classroom because she actually had a kitchen stove in it.  Every year for Christmas her 2nd grade class, with her help, of course :), made a gingerbread house.  I still remember it.

To this day I have always wanted to make my own gingerbread house.  You know, one that is like this...

or this

or I'd even "settle" for one like this

Now we were out and about one night this week and we found a kit with everything included.  Now I know it's not the same as an authentic gingerbread house, but it worked for us!

They are already asking when they can eat it!!