Tonight’s the Night!

Ring out the Old, Ring in the New! (or, in my case, try to stay home and be safe!) When I was much younger I loved to go to parties but now that I’m (how do we put this?) older/wiser/more cautious – going ‘out’ on New Year’s Eve is NOT my idea of a good idea. Youngest son is invited to a Game Night at church from 8 p.m. to midnight (who thinks up these times?) and I’m not happy with the ‘pick up’ time. The church is 5 minutes away but just being on the roads at that hour on New Years Eve is not my idea of a safe thing. Of course, when you’re 15 1/2 things like safety are not usually in your vocabulary, so my apprehension is totally foreign to him…time will tell whether I will relent and drive him or not (and weather will play a big roll, also). Middle son is invited to three parties and he said to me this  morning before going to work: “It depends on whether it’s still snowing if I go to the one party (an hour away) or just stay close to home.” (PLEASE stay closer!)

On the recipe end of it, I spotted this one which sounds like a good combination with a kick, especially for a party:

Pepper Jack Cheese Ball

1 1/2 cups shredded pepper Jack cheese (6 oz)
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (4 oz)
2 packages (3 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 cup sliced ripe olives
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3/4 cup nacho-flavored tortilla chips, crushed
Assorted crackers or tortilla chips

In food processor, place cheeses, lime juice and onion powder. Cover; process until well mixed. Spoon into medium bowl. Stir in olives and cilantro.
Place crushed tortilla chips on waxed paper. Spoon cheese mixture onto chips. Roll to coat cheese ball with chips. Serve with crackers.


Since I seem to be in a ‘spicy’ mood today, here’s another goodie:

Slow Cooker Spicy Chicken Nachos

1 loaf (16 oz) Mexican prepared cheese product with jalapeño peppers, cut into cubes
3/4 C.  Old El Paso  Thick `n Chunky salsa
1  (15 oz) can  black beans, drained, rinsed
1  (9 oz) pkg.  frozen cooked chicken breast strips, thawed, cubed
1 (8 oz) container sour cream
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped (1 cup)
3 medium green onions, sliced (3 tablespoons)
Large tortilla chips

Spray 3- to 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In cooker, place cheese, salsa, beans and chicken.
Cover; cook on Low heat setting 2 hours, stirring once halfway through cooking.
Stir in sour cream, bell pepper and onions. Increase heat setting to High. Cover; cook about 45 minutes longer or until mixture is hot.
Serve with tortilla chips. Topping can be kept warm on Low heat setting up to 2 hours; stir occasionally.


Here’s hoping all of you have a wonderful New Year’s Eve celebration, even if it’s just you watching the ‘ball drop’ munching on chips – remember it’s YOUR celebration and make the most of it!

HAPPY NEW YEAR and a wonderful 2010!



Mid-Week, Almost New Year’s Post

It’s been a quiet week here so far (YAY!); I’m still getting over the sinus infection so I’m not jumping into any big projects. In my time spent viewing other sites, several recipes sort of jumped out at me so I thought I’d post them here. One is just purely decadent and the other a practical dip for your New Year’s enjoyment.


Twinkie Quickie

1 box Hostess Twinkies
1 large box instant banana cream pudding
2-3 ripe bananas
large container Cool Whip
chopped nuts or crushed candy topping of your choice.

Cut Twinkies in half the long way and place cut side down, filling bottom of a 9×13″ pan.
Make the pudding according to directions on the package and pour evenly over Twinkies. Slice bananas and place over the pudding. Cover all with cool whip. Top with your choice of toppings and refrigerate at
least one hour before serving.


Layered Pizza Dip

1 (8-oz.) container soft cream cheese with chives and onions
1/2 cup chunky pizza sauce
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/3 cup finely chopped pepperoni
2 oz. (1/2 cup) shredded mozzarella cheese
2 oz. (1/2 cup) shredded Cheddar cheese

Heat oven to 350F. In ungreased 9-inch pie pan or 1 to 1 1/2-quart baking dish, layer all ingredients in order listed.

Bake at 350F. for 10 to 15 minutes or until dip is hot and cheese is melted.
Serve warm with bagel crisps, bagel chips or crackers.
Source: Pillsbury


Our weather has been very cooperative these past few days; it’s been cold and clear (in the low 20’s); yes, it’s cold but you can still do all the things you need, like driving to work or going grocery shopping or checking for all the after-Christmas mark-downs (something I need to get doing pretty soon – I usually go for a couple rolls of wrapping paper and some tags. )

Last night I decided to break with the ‘constant after Christmas-leftovers’ and made homemade pizza, using up some of the ‘extras’ that have been in the fridge, like black olives and leftover ham (they went great on the pizza!). We’re down to the ‘dregs’: some stuffing, a little gravy…a ton of sweet potato souffle (don’t even want to SEE that one…good, but too heavy), maybe 1-2 servings of mashed potatoes and one tiny serving of green bean casserole. I remember reading on the ‘net that some people pour it all into one big leftovers casserole and bake that, but somehow that just doesn’t sound appetizing to me. The ham bone got put in the freezer for some Navy bean soup sometime soon; that’s always a winter favorite that warms the insides!

Hoping you are all ‘recovering’ from all the fun/food/fellowship of Christmas; are you planning any great/fun events for New Year’s Eve? For us, it’s just a quiet night spent like most others; I haven’t decided whether to make up any appetizers yet or not. Usually they end up as an afterthought and no one’s interested in eating at midnight, so we’ll see. I ran into several more interesting recipe sites yesterday and will try to remember to feature them for you in the next few days.

Enjoy your day!


Published in: on December 30, 2009 at 10:50 am  Comments (1)  
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Recipes? We Got ’em!

Sometimes you can find the most interesting things when you’re not looking! For example, I was just going through my ‘Drafts’ file on my computer when I remembered another place I’d saved some good sites, so I went there. Lo and behold, there was a treasury of great sites I’d stored for ‘later’… not ever knowing I’d run into them some 6-7 YEARS later! For instance, check out some of these great cooking sites!


50+ Friends Club Cookbook (cooking for a crowd)


Large Sized Cooking (more cooking for a crowd)


Cooking by Numbers (very interesting idea: you check off on their site what you have in your fridge and cupboard and they’ll show you how to cook it up!)


Crockpot/Slowcooker Recipes

(more than 1,400 recipes)

(these are not all the crockpot sites I have, just didn’t want to over-burden you…for the moment!)

(and, a few more here; their Top 30 Crockpot Recipes)


In case you thought I got off ‘easy’ by just posting sites and not actual recipes, thought I’d give you this one for today:

Zucchini Chive Dip

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons milk
1 cup shredded zucchini
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1/8 teaspoon salt

In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese and milk until well blended.
 Mix in the zucchini, chives and salt.
Chill in the refrigerator approximately 1 hour before 

Petticoat Tails (cookies)

2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups soft butter
1 1/2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract or rose water
Sift the flour, soda and salt. In large bowl
beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and
fluffy. Add flour mixture, mix well with hands
to make a soft dough. Chill for 30 minutes.
Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface.
Divide in half and shape into a 8 inch long
roll. Wrap and chill for several hours or
overnight. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
With sharp knife cut into 1/8 thick slices.
Place slices 1 inch apart on ungreased
cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes until
lightly browned. Let stand 1 minute. Remove
to rack and cool. Makes about 7 dozen

Whipped Shortbread

1 1/2 cups butter (don't use margarine)
3/4 cup sifted powdered sugar
3/4 cup cornstarch
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
(Optional:  1 cup chopped pecans)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds or until 
softened. Add powdered sugar and cornstarch; beat well.
Add flour, beat till well combined.
Using about 1 tablespoon for each, shape dough into
1 1/4-inch balls.Place on ungreased cookie
sheet about 2 inches apart and flatten slightly.
Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes
 or till bottoms are starting to brown.
Remove, cool on wire

Those ought to keep you busy for awhile; I'll post more as
we get closer to New Years Eve.
Stay Well and warm (if you're in a cold climate);Hugs;

ps: My server is giving me fits right now,
sorry if this is laid out a little crowded.

Published in: on December 28, 2009 at 3:01 pm  Comments (1)  
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NOW I Can Relax a Little!

As I sit here Christmas night after two days of family, food, fun, food, a little more family and a LOT more food, I am truly blessed (and stuffed!). Last night (Christmas Eve) saw us attending my oldest son’s first official ‘hosted’ Christmas Party in his new house. He, his girlfriend and his roommate all sat around several weeks ago and asked each other the same question: “What does YOUR family do on Christmas Eve?” and the answer was the same in all three cases: “Nothing.” These three great young adults (all in their mid 20’s) came up with the idea that they would arrange, cook, and host a party for all three of their immediate families … what a great idea! The house they are all renting belongs to roommate’s parents who now reside in Myrtle Beach, SC. and it’s HUGE! (the perfect place for a party!) We got to meet the parents, the other two sibling sons plus my oldest son’s girlfriend’s parents & sister (that’s 13 people total).  Being the chef, my son cooked the meal (they all collaborated on the menu): Appetizers: Huge boiled shrimp & cocktail sauce, crackers and assorted fruits & cheeses, a stuffed phyllo dough  mushroom bundle with raspberry sauce, and baked brie with toast points. (I way over-did it on just the appetisers!) Main Course: Twice-baked potatoes; Caesar salad; fresh asparagus & red peppers (not sure what you call the way they were prepared) with Bernaise sauce; sweet potatoes with pecan struessle topping and Beef Wellington. By the end of the meal you could have rolled me out, I was totally stuffed on fantastic food! (dessert was fruit cheesecakes and cream puffs). Wonderful evening, wonderful food, great company – they were magnificent as cooks, decorators, house-cleaners and all-around hosts! (It was a 4-Star meal, for sure!)

Today found us visited by my oldest son & grandson for opening the presents, then they left for awhile. I’m still battling a nasty sinus infection so felt like my head weighed 100 lbs., easy. Later in the afternoon/evening oldest son returned with his girlfriend for dinner with us: Baked ham;mashed potatoes; sweet potato souffle; green bean casserole; corn casserole;  stuffing;  gravy;  rolls;  veggie tray and fresh cranberry-orange relish. Dessert was cream puffs & eclairs courtesy of middle son’s work: Gordon Foods dairy case! (Hey…I’m not the baker/chef in this family!) They just left to return to her parents house for a little while longer with relatives from out of state after playing the requisite several games of Uno. It’s almost become a holiday tradition here – eat, then UNO!

I’m pleasantly stuffedboth my tummy and my head (not so pleasantly there, however – I paced myself tonight…not like last night, whew!) Now’s the time to just sit back and relax a little –  company’s gone, food’s all cooked & eaten and leftovers put away; no more pressures (for awhile, that is). Middle & youngest son just left to go to the  movies to see the new Sherlock Holmes movie (so “you know who”
will stay up to make sure they got home OK).

Hoping you had a pleasant holiday.



Published in: on December 25, 2009 at 10:37 pm  Comments (1)  

It’s Getting REAL Close!

Today is Christmas EVE! What have you got planned for this eve of the holiday Christmas? I’m very grateful that I’m feeling MUCH better than yesterday, when I spent the whole day with some sort of intestinal bug … no fun. Today it’s just a sinusy head, so I should be able to get the last of the ‘to do’ list done: wrap presents and bake the “Happy Birthday, Jesus” cake (oh, and stuff stockings much later on).

Just visited a friend’s blog and was introduced to this GREAT video:

It’s called: “Silent Monks Sing Halleluia”… some pretty talented guys/people/kids? Trust me…it’s a riot!

In the RECIPE area, I have one to share that sounded pretty yummy:


Peach & Caramel Upside Down Cake

2 (15 1/4 oz., ea.) cans sliced peaches

1 (4 oz.) stick unsalted butter plus 2 T., softened

1/2 C. brown sugar

1/4 C. evaporated milk

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 C. chopped pecans

1 pkg. yellow cake mix


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Drain peaches, reserving syrup for sauce.

Caramel Sauce:

Combine 1 stick unsalted butter, brown sugar, reserved syrup from peaches and evaporated milk; cook over medium heat until syrupy, about 5 minutes; set aside.


Use 2 T. softened butter to grease 9 X 13 baking pan. Pour caramel sauce in pan, spread around and arrange peach slices over bottom. Sprinkle with cinnamon and pecans. Prepare cake mix according to package directions then pour over peaches in pan. Bake 30 minutes. Cool completely before unmolding. Serves 10+.  Can be served with ice cream and additional peaches, if desired.

(recipe: Del Monte as seen in a newspaper flier)


Our weather seems to be holding out which makes it just about perfect for getting around (driving/walking/etc) to finish up the last of the ‘running’: it’s clear, no snow, a little grey (no sun) and 28 chilly degrees but that’s OK! As long as there’s no freezing rain/sleet/huge tons of the white stuff, we’re GOOD!

Hoping you are (a) in good health (b) caught up with all your little errands (c) just about ready to enjoy tomorrow and all it’s wonders (d) able to take a few moments to reflect on what this holiday means (e) take a few minutes to relax and enjoy something hot (like cocoa/tea/coffee) and a little something sweet to go with it: cookies/fruit breads/maybe a small piece of fudge or chocolate? Enjoy yourself and smile a little today!



Published in: on December 24, 2009 at 9:48 am  Comments (1)  
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Busy Day but Good!

"Snowman Soup!"

Today was another ‘running’ day but very productive; had several quick trips to get done and knocked them off in record time. One of my stops was ACO hardware where I pleasantly discovered my local ACO is now selling Bernat worsted yarns in 14 oz. balls! (for $7.99!). Who would have thought to go looking at yarn in a HARDWARE STORE? (Stranger things have happened, I suppose.)

Got home and finished baking 4 dozen sugar cookies, then frosted & added sprinkles…another ‘to do’ thing done on my list! Youngest son had asked me if I would teach him how to make earrings, so we set out to do that and managed to make a very nice looking set for his young lady friend. I had a nice box and got the ‘presentation’ part done…looked very nice, if I do say so myself! (should have taken a photo, but didn’t think of it at the time). I guess her mother was quite surprised when she learned he ‘made’ them himself; her comments were in the area of “You should SELL them!” (that made him proud).

Tonight was my Knit Night and I was anxiously wondering just how many people would show up for our meeting this close to Christmas. I was very pleasantly surprised…we had 17 people; 2 of them were new tonight! Great evening; some great and thoughtful gifts were passed out (one lady made little bath salts in cute little cloth bags, another made “Snowman Soup”: basically a package of cocoa mix, some miniature marshmallows and a candy cane, with directions on how to make the ‘soup’!) Another of my friends gave each of us a ball of dishcloth cotton and a pattern for a dishcloth (mine said: “Love to Knit” on the pattern) plus this adorable little rubber duck! Each duck was different; mine is a “Princess Duck” complete with little pink crown & sparkly wand. I’m putting her on my computer and naming her: “The Queen of All I Survey”! (Yep, that’s me!)…soooooooo cute! Great night, great company…lots of fun. We even have people stop by to chat with us; a group of about 4 ladies who eat at Panera and then go clogging always stop by to see what we’re all working on. They’ve invited us to come clog; I said: “I can just see us all now clogging and knitting at the same time!”

Oh! Have another recipe for you; I haven’t tried this one but it comes from a friend who rates it highly. I’ve ‘heard’ of it, but now with her recommendation I’ll have to give it a try.



Saltine crackers
1 cup butter (do not substitute margarine)
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 12-ounce package chocolate chips, semi-sweet or milk chocolate
2 cups chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees for 5 minutes.

Line cookie sheet with aluminum foil.  Cover foil with 1 layer of saltines.

Mix butter and brown sugar in saucepan.  Boil hard for 2 minutes.  Pour mixture over crackers and bake in oven for 5 minutes.

Remove pan from oven and sprinkle entire package of chocolate chips over mixture. Return to oven only until chips melt (about 3-4 minutes).

Remove from oven and spread chips evenly with butter knife.  Sprinkle with chopped walnuts.  Let cool, then cut or break into squares or pieces.
Makes about 60 pieces

She also had a Note: I always double the topping that goes on the crackers.  This makes it much more thick and yummy.


Our weather is still ‘cooperating’: it’s chilly (in the mid-20’s) but clear and sunny which makes for great ‘running around buying last minute presents/necessities/groceries’ weather.

Hope all is well with you and that you’re able to take a small break each day to relax a little and enjoy the wonders of this Christmas season!



Still Baking!

Today was the last (I hope) of my grocery shopping for the holiday. Just finished getting the 17 knit group gifts together; each one contains: 1 knit pin, 4 Hershey Peanut Butter kisses, 2 Hershey nuggets, 1 cranberry/oatmeal/walnut cookie and a red & white candy cane with the candy cane legend attached. (For these cookies, I ‘cheated’ a bit and used the already made -in-the-dairy-case Kroger ready bake cookies; they’re really yummy and much easier on me.) Next up was another ‘easy’ batch of cookies: the ‘cake mix’ cookies in “Spice” cake mix with raisins; those are to add to the growing tins of cookies ‘for the house’. Still yet to come: 4 dozen Gordon Food Service sugar cookies (which also have to be frosted), and maybe (IF I HAVE THE ENERGY) peanut butter cookies & gingersnaps. (those might come tomorrow or Wednesday) I’m still a bit pooped from the ‘running’ this morning to the Post Office, drug store, gas station and Krogers all before I got the baking done for the knit group bags. (I know…I hear you: “Pace YOURSELF!”)

Anyway, with recipes and baking as my theme for the next few days, here are a few more recipes to enjoy:

Applesauce Bread

2 eggs

1 (16 oz.) jar applesauce

2 C. raisin bran cereal

2 1/2 C. flour

2 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

1/4 C. vegetable oil

1 C. dark brown sugar, firmly packed

1/2 C. chopped nuts


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease one 9 x 5 x 3 loaf pan. In a small bowl, combine eggs, applesauce and raisin bran. Let stand 10 minutes, then stir. In a large bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda and spices. Stir vegetable oil, brown sugar and nuts into cereal mixture. Add, all at once, to dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. Turn mixture into loaf pan and bake 60-70 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of loaf comes out clean. Let loaf cool 15 minutes before removing from pan. Makes 1 loaf.

(recipe courtesy: Kroger Co.)


Lemon Dessert


1 1/2 C. flour

3 T. confectioners sugar

3/4 C. shortening

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Blend above ingredients together and press into a 9 X 13 inch pan. Bake 30 minutes, then cool.



12 oz. cream cheese, softened

1  1/2 C. confectioners sugar

Beat cream cheese and confectioners sugar together with mixer for 10 minutes, then spread mixture onto cooled crust and smooth.


1 can lemon pie filling

1 large container Cool Whip

Spread lemon pie filling over cream cheese mixture then top with Cool Whip and smooth. Chill 1 hour before serving.


Also, no matter if you’re an adult or child, this next site is fun to peruse; if you think you might be too ‘old/grown up’ for this one, at least check out the many great recipes under Mrs. Klaus’s Kitchen or Mrs. Klaus’s Cookbook!

Still enjoying the Christmas music while bopping around my kitchen; hope you are taking time to ENJOY this time of year!



Published in: on December 21, 2009 at 2:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Last Minute Gift Idea…

What do you do when you’re already ‘right on time’ with all your gifts and baking? Why, you come up with ANOTHER gift idea for your whole Knit group, of course! Two weeks ago the knit group ladies started bringing in gifts for each other, hinting that this would continue. Feeling like I should reciprocate, somewhat, I’ve been racking my brain as to what to give a large group of people and also not spend a ton of money.  One of the ladies gave each of us a handsewn ornament and a beaded pin plus several pieces of candy.  Last night I remembered that I had started a project many months ago and never finished it. After a bit of searching, I located ‘them’ and began today adding to the count. The photo above is not my pin, but pretty close. I had already knit 11 of these and added another 6 today. My ‘knitting pins’ are about 2 inches square and yellow, each having a clasp back and a small red heart button in the bottom right corner. I knit them on a very small (size O) knitting needle, then transfer them to toothpicks which I’ve cut the end off of and glued a small round wooden bead to, so that they look like knitting needles). Along with these I plan on including several pieces of chocolates (got a great sale on Hershey’s Peanut butter kisses and Hershey’s ‘nuggets’…where else? Our local drug store!). On a ‘usual’ Tuesday knit night we average about 14 ladies, so I’m trying to play it safe and made 17 (still have to sew on the little buttons and the backs). Along with this idea, I remembered another ‘idea’ from Christmas’s past and bought red & white candy canes. Attached to each one and included in the ‘gift’ will be this story:

The Candy Cane Legend

The candy cane is in the shape of a “J” to remind us that we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas. Turn it around and it also is the shape of a Shepherd’s staff to remind us that Jesus is the Good Shepherd who takes care of us. The red stripes remind us of the blood Jesus shed on the cross to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. The white core reminds us that Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection was fulfillment of prophecy, to purify our hearts and make us holy before God, so that we, too can live in Heaven with Him.”

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him shall not perish, but  have everlasting life.” John 3:16


Merry Christmas!



Published in: on December 19, 2009 at 8:51 pm  Comments (2)  
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Off to a Good Start…

Today is Day 1 of the ‘official cookie baking’ at my house. So far, there are 2 1/2 dozen lemon meltaways; 4 dozen chocolate/chocolate chip; and 3 1/2 dozen oatmeal/walnut/chocolate chip cookies done!  Right now I’m waiting for the last tray of choc/choc. chips to finish; am thinking that I might delay the 4 dozen sugar cookies until tomorrow. Should mention here that I sort of ‘cheated’ on two of the recipes, using the ‘cake mix cookies’ idea for the chocolate & lemon varieties; they’re easy, go together quickly and taste really good! I still have several other recipes I want to try, but this year I’ve sort of varied a little from my ‘usual’ cookies. At the special needs dinner someone baked these really yummy choc/nut/oatmeal cookies which sent me on a mission to find something like them. Below is a pretty close copy:

“Prize Winning Oatmeal Drop Cookies”

(by Liz Tracy, as featured on

2 c. sifted all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt (I would omit this)

1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

2 C. rolled oats

1/2 C. packed brown sugar

1/2 C. white sugar

1 C. shortening

2 eggs

1/3 C. milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 C. chopped walnuts


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Sift together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add oatmeal, brown sugar, white sugar, shortening, eggs, milk and vanilla; mix well. Stir in 1 C. chopped walnuts. Drop by teaspoonful onto greased cookie sheets and bake 10-12 minutes.

(MY additions/comments: I would omit the salt, as I felt these were a little too salty. I would also add 1/2 C. chocolate chips. I found that these were very hard to stir together and would suggest that the vanilla be added before all the wet ingredients, as it didn’t seem to be incorporated as well if added with the last ingredients. These cookies are VERY sticky; I used a melon baller to dispense them. They do not spread out, so you can group them closer together on the sheets. With that size balls, it made 3 1/2 dozen.

(suggestion from original recipe writer: you can also use raisins, chocolate chips, M & M’s or coconut instead of the walnuts, if you wish)


I’m also eyeing another really yummy dessert that I haven’t made in quite some time:

Pistachio Dessert

1 small pkg. Pistachio jello pudding mix

1 large container Cool Whip

chopped cherries & walnuts (your choice as to how much)


Mix DRY jello pudding into Cool Whip; when fully incorporated, stir in chopped cherries & nuts. Chill 1 hour before serving. (can be doubled)


(NOTE: you can also add 1 small can drained crushed pineapple and small marshmallows, if you like)


‘Tis the season to get baking & cooking all the lovely ‘treats’ we so enjoy at this time of year.  It’s a lovely (rather gray) WARM (35 degrees!) day out today; I’m not complaining a bit – whenever I can walk or drive without worrying about slipping, sliding or getting stuck in snow or ice, it’s a great day!

I’m not a big tv watcher, but lately there is a new feature on the Travel Channel called “Meet the Natives” which has me totally fascinated.

Five native men from the island of Tanna (in the South Pacific) have been sent by their high chief to speak to the highest ruler in the United States with the goal of achieving Peace. These are native men who wear very little in the line of clothing and who speak through one of their young men who has learned English. I am constantly amazed and enlightened at the level of not only their understanding, but their views on our culture and customs. They spend time living with five ‘families’ across the United States eating local foods, experiencing our customs (like Thanksgiving and Christmas), and inter-acting with the people in that location. Their depth of understanding is truly amazing, in my opinion. If you get a chance, check it out! (or, at least go to the site and read about it!).

Hoping you are getting ‘in the spirit’ of the season;



Published in: on December 18, 2009 at 1:16 pm  Comments (1)  
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Takin’ it Easy-for today…

After yesterday’s ‘fruit bread baking’ and last night’s Christmas gathering for my special needs group, this Pammie was just a little too pooped to jump into cookie baking. We had a great time last night and a great group; we estimated around 80 people to our little dinner (with just 3 of us getting it together).  We had a great veggie tray (I cut up around 12 seedless English cucumbers) with lots of veggies & dip, spiral meat & cheese sandwiches (our local Costco makes really nice rolled sandwiches using flour and wheat tortillas, sliced meats & cheeses & lettuce all wrapped in a roll then cut into little pinwheel sandwiches, and lots of cookies.  The group sang four songs:  “O, Holy Night”, “Joy to the World”, “Silent Night” and our theme: “Amazing Grace” (always brings tears when our kids sing that one…I’m the biggest bawl-baby there and I’m also the one playing piano and trying to see the keys through the wet-stuff dripping out of my eyes!). Our kids sing that one with their whole hearts and it really shows. After 4 hours on my feet in dress shoes, I was ready to come home and just crash…and I did. Got up today and did a quick run to our local store (Gordon Food Service) and was only going to buy their frozen sugar cookies & tub of their white frosting…oh well, let’s just say I was tempted! Came home with the cookie stuff, a nice assorted box of 40 chocolate eclairs/cream puffs/and dipped filled balls; a pumpkin pie; chips (a necessity); a lb. of butter; some nice little paper dessert plates with red & green wreaths; a large tray of their sweet potato souffle (we had it for Thanksgiving and it was just great!)…think that’s all.  Let’s just say we’re going to be eating large on Christmas!

On to the recipes, you say? Sure! Among the very nice gifts I was given last night was a ceramic bowl and this recipe:

Crab Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

1/3 C. mayonnaise

1 T. creamy horseradish sauce (I buy Kraft)

1  1/2 T. minced onion

1/2 tsp. seasoned salt

1 T. parsley, chopped

dash garlic powder

6 oz. canned premium crab meat

1 bottle cocktail sauce


Blend all ingredients (except half of the crab and the cocktail sauce) in a bowl and mix well. Place into a  serving bowl and pour cocktail sauce over top. Add r est of crab meat on top and serve with crackers.

(sure sounds yummy to me!)


I believe I stated earlier this week that I’ll be trying to feature at least one recipe per day up to Christmas.  I’ve found some pretty yummy sounding ones; can’t guarantee that they’ll all be non-fat or healthy/nutritious, but they certainly would brighten up a dinner or holiday party!

It’s 28 degrees outside right now and feels more like 20 or lower. Have to go pick up youngest son a little later from a band concert he’s attending so I’m not looking forward to jumping back in my really cold car…oh well, that’s the price ya pay for being a parent, right?

Enjoy your evening, relax a little, maybe pop a little popcorn? Sounds good to me!



Published in: on December 17, 2009 at 8:00 pm  Comments (1)  
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