as much as I’d want to – it’s not happening


Had fully planned on going to church today BUT the weather had other plans. Don’t know about your area, but here we’re expecting 9+ inches of snow during the day. Right now (7:14 a.m.) it doesn’t look too bad out there, driveway looks passable BUT we know (from living here since 1979) that once the snow picks up, our driveway will be almost (if not totally) impossible to GET UP coming home. I called the snow plow man yesterday to confirm we’re on his list for this season but that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be clear enough when we get home from church, so husband decided: NO, we’re staying home. Middle son is at a gaming tournament now and will be coming home sometime later . . . in his little Honda – not the greatest thoughts for a Mom, but will just have to PRAY HIM HOME.

On a good note, got spa bath cloth #3 done last night while watching TV (mostly the weather reports) so one to go and this one should be a little easier/quicker because it’s a solid yarn (last 2 were red/white/navy blue variegated which made seeing the individual stitches much harder).


Firm Butter Cream Frosting

1 (2 lb) bag sifted powdered sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, softened/
cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 1/2 C. solid vegetable shortening
(like Crisco)
1 1/2 T. vanilla
1/8 to 1/2 C. whole milk

In bowl of electric mixer cream butter,
shortening & vanilla until smooth,
3-5 minutes on medium speed. Stop
mixer, add about 1/4 of powdered
sugar (add gradually). Mix on Low
speed until incorporated. Pause to
scrape down sides of bowl using
rubber spatula & add another 1/4
of powdered sugar. Continue mixing
& scraping bowl sides – add more
sugar until you have added it all.
Mixture will be quite thick. Add 1/8
C. milk, mix at Low speed until
incorporated. (at this point you
may add more milk, it’s your
preference for consistency.
Ice cake, applying icing as smoothly
as possible. Let  set 20-30 minutes
for it to form a’crust’. If you like a
flat surface on your cake, once it
has crusted, you can use a square
of un-patterned paper towel or a
sheet of clean, white paper or
parchment paper.
Lay paper on area of cake you want
smoothed &, using your hand, a
spatula or even a clean,unused
credit card, smooth icing.

Easy Layered Dessert

2 C. cold milk
1 (3.9 oz) pkg. chocolate instant
pudding mix
1 (10.5 oz) prepared pound cake,
cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 C. chocolate syrup
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed,

In a bowl add milk, dry pudding mix &
beat using wire whisk 2 minutes until
well blended. In 3 qt serving bowl
arrange half of cake cubes & drizzle
with 1/4 C. chocolate syrup. Layer
with 1 C. pudding mix & 1 1/2 C.
Cool Whip; repeat layers, ending
with Cool Whip. Refrigerate until
ready to serve. Makes 15 (2/3 C.


Hawaiian Pineapple Chicken

5 chicken breasts, cut into strips
1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 T. lemon pepper
3 T. olive oil

1 can pineapple chunks
1 1/4 C. juice from chunks (there
won’t be enough, add water to make
1 1/4 C.)
3/4 C. apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 C. sugar
2 T. cornstarch
sliced green onions (garnish)

Cooked white or brown rice for 7

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Mix flour, salt/pepper in a shallow dish
or pie plate; dredge chicken strips in
mixture thoroughly. Spray 9 X 13″ baking
dish with nonstick spray. Heat oil in hot skillet;
place each strip into hot pan over medium
heat – cook chicken until golden brown,
turning to cook chicken strips. Lay cooked
strips in prepared dish. Pour pineapple
juice (& water) medium sauce pan. Mix
ginger, sugar & cornstarch together. Add
soy sauce, vinegar, bouillon cube & mix well.
Bring to boil over medium heat – boil 2
minutes, stirring occasionally then pour
2/3 of sauce over chicken. Bake, uncovered,
30 minutes. Remove from oven & pour
pineapple chunks over top. Pour rest of
sauce over chicken & return to oven. Bake
10-15 minutes longer then sprinkle green
onions on top before serving.
Serve with cooked white or brown rice.
Serves 7


Crockpot Honey Buffalo Turkey Breast

1 (3 lb) turkey breast, bone in, skin on
1 C. Franks Red Hot (original)
1/4 C. honey
1/4 tsp. black pepper
4 tsp. melted butter

Place turkey breast in crockpot. In
small bowl combine Frank’s Hot sauce,
honey & pepper – stir until smooth. Pour
half of sauce over turkey (save remaining
sauce in fridge). Cover & cook on Low 5
hours. Heat remaining sauce in microwave
until warmed. Remove turkey breast &
remove skin & bone. Slice & serve with
warmed sauce. Serves 6


Crockpot Egg & Sausage Casserole

14 slices bread cut into large squares
1 dozen eggs
2 1/4 C. milk
1 lb. breakfast sausage, cooked/drained
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1 small can green chilies
salt/pepper, to taste

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
spray. Make layers: bread, sausage,
peppers & chilies. Beat eggs with milk,
salt/pepper & pour over layers. Cover &
cook on Low 5-7 hours. Serves 6-8


Cheddar Potato Casserole

3 1/2 C. water
1/2 C. (1 stick) butter
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
3 1/2 C. instant potato flakes
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 C. (6 oz) shredded sharp
Cheddar cheese
1 C. (1/2 pint) heavy cream

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 8 X 8″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. In large saucepan
bring water, butter, salt/pepper to
boil over high heat. Remove pan
from heat, stir in potato flakes &
onion; mix well. Spoon mixture
into baking dish; sprinkle with
cheese & top with cream. Bake
35-40 minutes until heated through
& edges are golden. Serves 6


Honey-glazed Pork Meatballs

1/2 C. panko bread crumbs
1/2 C. milk
2 lb. lean ground pork
1 egg
1/4 C. diced yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 C. fresh chopped herbs:
(poster used sage, parsley,
rosemary & thyme)

1 1/2 C. chicken broth
1 T. cornstarch whisked with
1 T. water until smooth
1/4 C. honey
2 T. soy sauce
2 T. ketchup
2 tsp. apple cider vinegar

Line large cookie sheet with foil.
Stir breadcrumbs with milk & let
set 5 minutes; add to ground pork
in bowl along with rest of meatball
ingredients – use hands to mix until
combined well (do not overwork).
Using hands, form into 12 evenly
sized meatballs (poster used an
ice cream scoop). Place balls on
foil-lined sheet & place under
broiler in oven 5-8 minutes,
watching closely until lightly
browned – transfer to crockpot.
Whisk together sauce ingredients;
pour over meatballs. Cover & cook
on High 2-3 hours or Low 4-6 until
meatballs are fully cooked.

NOTE: For saucier meatballs,
double sauce ingredients.

If sauce is too thin after cooking,
it can be transferred to a saucepan
& brought to a boil 3-5 minutes
while whisking in additional
cornstarch & water (cornstarch &
water in equal amounts) until
desired thickness is reached.

Crockpot Sour Cream Potato
Bacon Soup

1 medium onion, diced
10 C. cubed potatoes
6 C. chicken broth
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
3 T. dried parsley
1 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. black pepper
pinch crushed red pepper flakes
6 oz. cream cheese
1 C. sour cream
2 T. cornstarch
1 C. frozen corn
10 slices bacon, cooked/crisp &
1 C. grated Cheddar cheese, cut
into cubes
chopped green onions – garnish

Combine onions, potatoes, broth,
garlic powder, parsley, salt/pepper &
red pepper flakes in large 6 qt. crockpot.
Cover & cook on High 4-5 hours or Low
7-8 hours until potatoes are tender. Turn
heat to High; stir cream cheese cubes into
potatoes. In medium bowl stir sour cream &
cornstarch – stir mixture into crockpot. Stir
in corn, add bacon, cheese – stir & adjust
seasonings, if needed. Garnish bowls
with chopped green onions, if desired.
Serves 10


This dessert is REALLY REALLY YUMMY!

Cream Puff Chocolate Eclair Cake

1/2 C. (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 C. water
1 C. flour
4 large eggs

Chocolate Filling:
2 oz. semisweet chocolate
2 T. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. powdered sugar
3 T. hot water

Cream Filling:
4 C. milk
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 large (5.1 oz, ea) pkgs. instant
vanilla pudding (or 3 small pkgs)

1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
chocolate syrup

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large heavy saucepan heat butter
& water to boiling over medium-high
heat. Add flour & reduce heat to Low.
Cook & stir until it forms a ball & pulls
away from pan. Remove from heat &
transfer to a large bowl. Using wooden
spoon, beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating
well after each egg. Spread mixture in
bottom & up sides of an ungreased
9 X 13″ baking dish. Bake 35  minutes;
cool completely.

Chocolate Filling:
Melt chocolate & butter in microwave
on High 1 minute; continue heating
at 20 second intervals until smooth; stir
in vanilla. Sift in powdered sugar, a little
at a time, stirring as you go. Dribble water
into mixture until smooth & spreadable
(you might not use all the water). Spread
over cooled pastry.

Cream Filling:
In bowl beat cream cheese until fluffy.
Slowly & gradually add milk while beating.
Once well combined, add dry pudding mix
& beat until thickened – spread over
chocolate layer.

Top with Cool Whip & draw lines of
chocolate syrup across the top then
run a knife in the opposite direction
through the syrup lines, about every
2 inches creating a nice wavy line.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.



My brain is finally able to click on ‘other’
things besides getting Christmas gifts
bought & made. Am now concentrating
on what ‘sides’ to make to go with
either prime rib or roast pork loin for
Christmas dinner. So far we have:
Grilled asparagus, Glazed Carrots,
Twice-baked/stuffed potatoes –
am kind of thinking something cold,
like maybe a big tossed salad (Greek
or something like that). I’m also in
charge of desserts and am thinking
of some sort of either a Jell-o type
creamy dessert and/or (thought
hit me in the shower last night):
a cranberry lemon pie. Not exactly
sure if there even IS such a thing
but it sounded good to me at the
time. (But then, of course, I had
been binge watching the Holiday
Baking Contest on one of the food
channels! – might have heard of
those ingredients then . . . maybe).
We’ll see what I can find in my many
recipe sites and I’ll get back to you.

Since we’re going to kind of be
‘snowed in’ (so to speak) that gives
me more time to get my ‘to do’
list in order. Am super glad that I
only have a few more things to
get. Thought I was pretty much
DONE with all the actual gift
buys but while chatting with a
friend last night (after I told her
I convinced oldest son to open
his 2 big, long boxes that were
delivered to his house: two
six-foot folding tables) that now
he won’t have anything to open
on Christmas…to me that’s not
a big deal, but to him…well, let’s
just say he’s a 100% Christmas
freak! While thinking on that
think I came up with a good
small present for him: a gift
certificate to our local movie
theaters! (In fact I texted his
girlfriend with the suggestion
that they do the same for his
Dad & I – they did that a few
years ago and it actually was
great at getting my retired
husband out of the house!).
We’ll see – I still have almost 2
weeks to drive to the theater
& purchase that – hopefully
on a less snowy day! How are
YOU coming on your preparations?
One of my friends has her entire
house (inside & out…yes, that’s
YOU, Mary/Momma) decorated.
Here there are a few snowmen
on shelves & ledges, 2 Christmas
candlesticks – that’s about it for
now. I’m NOT a ‘decorate the
entire house’ type person! My
oldest son LOVES the season and
will get his house all done almost
BEFORE December! Lights outside,
music piped out there, etc., he’s
all about that. (I’d be happy with
one tiny 3 foot fiber-optic tree in
our dining room and a manger…
OH! I do have ONE manger up!)
Oh well . . . in my view, I still have
some time (grin).

Hoping you are warm, safe &
enjoying your day!



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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Well Cindy and I have a few things to get at the grocery store for our dinner. As for gifts I tend to give money it leaves buying to the recipient.

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