What Does THIS Button Do?


New wireless door bell

UPS delivered our new wireless door bell today – husband is in his glory. There’s a button on the back and, of course, he had to PUSH it . . . sigh. When I ordered this model it DID say it had several ring tones to choose from; it didn’t say it had a good 25+, with NO list of what songs/sounds in WHAT ORDER! After hearing husband (happily, I might add) hit the button for: “My Old Kentucky Home”, “Deep in the Heart of Texas”, quite a few classical pieces, one REALLY WEIRD (must be for Halloween) sound, one that when you push the button it goes: Ding Dong…HELLO! (weird). (husband just found the paperwork: there are THIRTY-TWO choices of songs! All I wanted was either Ding Dong or the Westminster chimes version of ding dong! Craziness! Husband isn’t happy it doesn’t have a volume control – it IS pretty loud (but, Hey! It’s much better than someone standing on our porch knocking and no one hears them!) (wonder how long the 3 AA batteries will last?

How’s your weather? It’s cold here with lots of little, tiny snowflakes flowing through the air. Temp right now: 25; last night was Knit Night and I drove home in a snow storm (of sorts) – light, fluffy stuff, so I drove about 8 MPH slower than normal – it wasn’t slippery. I’m hearing we might be getting 3 inches by tonight – sure hope not, tonight is special needs group AND the last time our kids get to practice their song before next week’s party! Oh well – using my (almost) favorite expression: It IS what it IS!

Gas prices are staying the same: $3.16/9 – YAY!

Today was the beginning of my ‘get it done’ time; got up early (husband decided to drive me, in case it was slippery) and delivered around 53 baby hats to the hospital. Husband had an ulterior motive: few minutes down the road is AVON DONUTS! You guessed it – we now have 1+ dozen donuts sitting here. Last night, being my Knit group’s last meeting before next year, I bought 3 dozen (very yummy) chocolate chip cookies for them, along with mini candy bars. Mid-meeting time, the manager of Panera brought us over an entire Cinnamon Crumb Cake, sliced up – can you say: SUGAR HIGH??? (let’s just say, I certainly wasn’t in the mood for MORE sugar – especially donuts, but husband and sons will be happy). Started the Christmas baking: have 3 loaves of breads for the neighbors: 2 cranberry and one cinnamon swirl – just waiting for them to cool enough to wrap and deliver . . . CHECK! Will probably start the cookie baking tomorrow, as I don’t have anything else on schedule. Christmas shopping is pretty much done, still need to go to the drug store and buy 4 bags of disposable razors, then I’m done!!! I LOVE AMAZON! A book I ordered about 3 days ago (for husband) just came; still waiting on 2 more video games (they could even be in our mailbox! Our mailbox is down a side street about 1/2 block away; since we live on a MAJOR highway, they no longer deliver to the houses – we have one of those pedestal-mounted multi-box contraptions).


Today’s recipes are more Holiday-oriented; dips, cheeseballs, cookies, etc.


Cocktail Cheese Balls/ Cheeseball

1 lb. Cheddar cheese, grated
1 T. grated onion
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. paprika
finely chopped pecans
chopped parsley
chopped chipped beef
After grating cheese, allow to come
to room temperature. Beat cheese
until creamy, then add onion, Wor.
sauce & paprika. Continue to beat
until completely blended. Shape 
into balls about 1". Divide balls into
three equal amounts, approx. 16
inches each). Roll 1/3 of balls in 
chopped pecans, 1/3 in parsley,
1/3 in chopped chipped beef. 
Refrigerate. Makes 48 balls.

When ready to serve: spear each
ball with cocktail picks. You can use
an apple or 1/2 grapefruit placed
cut-side down on a bed of lettuce,
as a holder.
NOTE: You can also shape the 
above mixture into a large cheese ball
and then roll in either pecans, parsley,
or chipped beef. Serve with crackers.

(recipe: Basic Recipes)

Hot Corn Dip

2 (11 oz.,ea) cans Mexicorn, drained
2 (4.5 oz,ea) cans chopped green chilies,
2 C. grated Monterey Jack cheese (about 8 oz)
2/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 C. mayonnaise
corn chips, for dipping
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease 9 X 13 baking dish with nonstick spray. 
In medium bowl, mix corn, chilies, cheeses &
mayonnaise until well mixed. Spread mixture in
prepared dish. Bake, uncovered, until bubbly
around edges, 30-40 minutes. Serve dip warm
with corn chips. Makes 12 servings.

(recipe: Food Network)

Christmas Dip

1 C. mayonnaise
1 C. Parmesan cheese*
2 C. artichoke hearts (16 oz)
1 dash garlic powder
1 dash hot pepper sauce
1 can shrimp or crab meat (small)
small bread rounds,
crackers, tortilla chips (for dipping)
Preheat oven 325 degrees F. Combine
all ingredients and spread into greased
baking dish. Bake 30 minutes or until hot.
Serve with bread rounds, crackers or 
tortilla chips. *Sprinkle with additional
Parmesan cheese last 5-10 minutes of
baking. May also be re-heated in

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Jalapeno Popper Rollups

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
8 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese*
1/4 C. finely chopped onion
1 medium jalapeno, finely chopped &
2 T. chopped cilantro
1 T. milk
2 (8 oz, ea) cans refrigerated crescent
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Mix all ingredients except crescent dough
together. Separate each can of dough into 8
triangles. Cut each triangle in half. Spread
each triangle with a generous tablespoon
of the cream cheese mixture; roll up triangle
wide portion to middle point. Place rollups
on baking sheet, point side down. Bake
12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve
warm with salsa. Serves 16

*Also good made with shredded Cheddar cheese

(recipe: Dawn-justapinch.com)

Peppermint Bark (candy)

12 oz. chocolate chips
1 lb. white chocolate chips
1/2 tsp. peppermint extract*
1/2 C. peppermint candy, crushed
Preheat oven 250 degrees F.
Line a 9 X 13 pan with foil, let it hang
over the sides. Spray foil with nonstick
spray. Pour chocolate chips in an even
layer on the foil; place in oven 5 minutes.
Remove & smooth with spatula. Place in
refrigerator until firm (about 20 minutes).
Melt white chocolate chips in a double
boiler. Stir in extract, let cool a little bit.
Pour melted chips over chocolate layer,
working quickly to spread. Sprinkle top
with crushed candy & gently press candy
into chocolate. Chill until firm. Lift foil,
shake off excess candy. Cut into 2 inch wide
strips. Chill in covered container. 

NOTE: Poster mentions she uses Ghiradelli
60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips

*Poster notes she uses pure extract because
imitation might cause the chocolate to seize

(recipe: Sharry-justapinch.com)

Egg Nog Cookies
(made with egg nog)

2 1/4 C. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
dash salt
1 1/4 C. sugar
3/4 C. butter, softened
2 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. egg nog
Preheat oven 300 degrees F.
Mix flour, baking powder, nutmeg, 
cinnamon & salt in medium mixing
bowl; mix well. Cream together sugar
& softened butter until fluffy, about
1 minute; add egg yolks, mix until
well combined. Add vanilla, egg nog;
mix well. Add dry ingredients; mix
until just combined. Spray a large
cookie sheet with nonstick spray. 
Drop dough onto sheets using a cookie
scoop sprayed with nonstick spray.
Bake 20-22 minutes or until tops
spring back when lightly pressed.
Remove cookies to wire rack to cool.

4 T. softened butter
2 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
6 T. eggnog
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
dash salt
In small mixing bowl, cream butter,
then add rest of ingredients. Mix 
until smooth & glossy. Frost cookies
then let them rest on the counter
15 minutes for frosting can set up.

(recipe: Jamiecooksitup.net)
Butternuts (cookies)

3/4 C. butter plus 1 T., room temp  
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 3/4 C. flour
6 oz. pkg. butterscotch chips
1 C. finely chopped pecans

3 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. rum extract (or other flavor)
1/2C. chopped pecans
3-4 T. milk or water
Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Cream butter with powdered sugar & salt 
until light & fluffy. Beat in flour; mix well. Add
butterscotch chips & pecans; mix well. Shape
dough, a scant teaspoonful at a time, into balls.
Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake 15 minutes until firm but not brown. Let 
cool on wire racks. 
Prepare glaze:
Mix glaze ingredients (except nuts)until smooth. 
You can either dip cookies into glaze or using a 
spoon drizzle glaze over cookies. Sprinkle
chopped nuts over glaze quickly, so that nuts
will stick. Makes 3 dozen

(recipe: Denise-justapinch.com)

Grandma's Old Fashioned Bread Pudding with
Vanilla Sauce

4 C. (8 slices) cubed white bread
1/2 C. raisins
2 C. milk
1/4 C. butter
1/2 C. sugar
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 T. vanilla
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1/2 C. butter
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C. heavy whipping cream
1 T. vanilla
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine bread & raisins in large bowl.
Combine milk & 1/4 C. butter in 1 quart
saucepan; cook over medium heat until
butter is melted (4-7 minutes). Pour milk
mixture over bread; let stand 10 minutes.
Stir in all remaining pudding ingredients. Pour
into greased 1 1/2 quart casserole dish. Bake
40-50 minutes or until set in center. 

Combine all sauce ingredients except vanilla in
1 quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, 
stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens &
comes to a full boil (5-8 minutes; stir in vanilla.

To Serve:
Spoon warm pudding into individual dessert
dishes; serve with sauce. Store leftovers in

(recipe: Facebook)
(A friend sent me this recipe - she has 4 kids and just
tried it - she thinks it's MUCH better than any commercially
made hot chocolate mix)

Heavenly Hot Chocolate Mix

Yield: 10 cups of mix (30 servings)

5 cups nonfat dry milk powder
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 cups instant chocolate drink mix (Nesquik)
1 cup powdered nondairy creamer
1 cup malted milk powder (Carnation – found at Walmart)
1 cup chocolate malted milk powder (Carnation – found at Walmart)
1/2 cup baking cocoa

In a large airtight container, combine all ingredients. Store in a cool
dry place for up to 2 months. (Mixture will settle).

To prepare hot chocolate:
Place 1/3rd cup mix in a mug; add
3/4 cup hot water and stir until blended. Marshmallows optional

If you have all the ingredients, this seriously takes 10 minutes or

less to throw together….it is very good! Enjoy

– Taste of Home


Mini Apple Fritters

2 C. flour
1/2 C. granulated sugar
2 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
3/4 C. milk
2 T. melted butter
2 tsp. vanilla
2 apples, peeled & diced*
2 T. cooking oil

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder,
salt & cinnamon in mixing bowl; use a
whisk to stir & evenly blend. In separate
bowl, beat eggs with a whisk until yolks
& whites are combined; add milk, melted
butter & vanilla – continue to whisk. Using a
rubber spatula or large wooden spoon, gently
fold dry & wet ingredients together until
combined, being careful not to overmix. Gently
fold in chopped apples. In deep, heavy-bottomed
saucepan, heat at least 2 inches of oil until it
reaches 375 degrees F. ** Use a small cookie
scoop to drop batter into oil, then drop about
5 at a time, being careful not to decrease the
temperature of the oil. Using tongs, turn the
fritters over to cook evenly, about 2 minutes
per fritter. Remove fritters & dry/drain in a bowl
lined with paper towels, allow to cool for a
few minutes but still serve warm.

*In chosing apples – if you like tart flavors, use
Granny Smith apples. For sweeter flavors, use
Gala or Pink Ladies. Fuji apples are an excellent
balance of sweet and sour.

**To test that the oil is ready, carefully drop a little
batter into pan. If it rises to the surface & turns
golden brown almost immediately, the oil is

Fritter Toppings:
warm caramel drizzled over fritters
dust with powdered sugar
make a simple glaze using powdered sugar & milk

(recipe: Proctor & Gamble)

Softest Sugar Cookies!
(no rolling them out!)

2/3 C. shortening
2/3 C. butter
1 1/2 C. white sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/3 C. granulated sugar (for decoration)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place granulated sugar (end of recipe) in
a shallow dish.
In medium bowl, cream together butter,
shortening & sugar. Stir in eggs & vanilla;
combine flour, baking powder & salt. Stir
into creamed mixture until dough comes
together. Roll dough into walnut-sized
balls then roll balls in granulated sugar in
shallow dish. Place cookies on ungreased
cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake
10-12 minutes until bottom is lightly
browned. Remove from sheets to cool on
wire racks. Makes about 4 1/2 dozen.

(recipe: Facebook)

Peanut Butter Rice Treats

3 C. corn flakes, crushed
1 C. crunchy peanut butter
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. white corn syrup
6 oz. chocolate chips

Heat peanut butter, sugar & corn
syrup over low heat, to melt. Stir in
cereal, mix well. Pat mixture into 8 X 8
lightly greased pan.* Melt chocolate
chips over low heat or in microwave;
spread over top. Cool until firm, then
cut into bars.

*NOTE: You can also line the pan with
aluminum foil, then lightly spray with
nonstick spray – makes taking bars out
of pan easier.

(recipe: Facebook)

Crockpot Cinnamon Almonds

1 1/2 C. sugar
1 1/2 C. brown sugar
3 T. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
1 egg white
2 tsp. vanilla
2 C. almonds (whole)
1/4 C. water

In medium bowl, mix together both sugars,
cinnamon & salt; set aside. In another
medium bowl, whisk egg white & vanilla until
frothy; add almonds – make sure the almonds
are thoroughly coated with egg white mixture.
Add cinnamon mixture; toss to coat. Thoroughly
spray inside of crockpot with nonstick spray.
Add coated nuts. Cover & cook on Low 3-4 hours,
stirring every 20 minutes. In last hour, add
1/4 C. water; stir well. (this ensures a crunchy
coating). Continue cooking nuts another 45
minutes- 1 hour. Stir well throughout cooking
process. Line a baking sheet with parchment
paper; spread almonds flat to cool. They will be
sticky at this point; make sure you separate them
a little and have no large mounds.

(recipe: Facebook)

Buttermilk Ranch Cheeseball

1 T. sour cream
1 (1 oz) pkg. ranch dressing mix (like Hidden Valley)
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese
1/2 lb. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 C. finely chopped pecans

Mix sour cream with ranch dressing mix in bowl
until smoothly combined. Add cream cheese &
Cheddar cheese; mix with your hands until
thoroughly blended. Chill mixture 5 minutes, then
shape into a ball. Place chopped pecans in a shallow
bowl; roll all sides of ball in nuts, to coat. Serve
immediately. Makes 1 ball

(recipe: Facebook)


I know – I don’t usually do that: post all holiday foods and no ‘meat & potatoes’ stuff, but I have SO many really good sounding recipes I thought you might not mind.

Not much else going on around here, dinner is leftover chili; husband told me when I got home last night that he thought the chili was so good this time, he had THREE bowls! Glad he liked it! Middle son stopped by right after I had finished making it and he had some; I asked him how it was. He answered: “Mom, when HASN’T your chili been awesome!” (What a kid!!!)

Hope you’re staying warm, relaxing a bit, and taking the MANY Christmas chores a little-at-a-time. Don’t over stress it! (I keep telling myself that, too). Life’s short – don’t try to rush it too much!!!

Big hugs;


PS: The second ‘lacy’ scarf is 1/4th done!


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