Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Specials Fill The Air Waves

I am so grateful for DVR!

DH and I have spent every evening in the month of December watching at least one Christmas special and sometimes we stay up late and watch more than one. 

Hallmark Channel is full of cheesy, gooey, sappy, wonderful Christmas Specials. So, I recorded about 4 dozen of them and we are watching them. When our day is finished and we finally settle down in front of the fire with a cup of cocoa, and have a couple of dogs curled up next to us is now a tradition.  Even if we get company, we just invite them to get comfortable because that is what we are doing. 

I have a few favorites.

"The Christmas Card".  The story comes to life as a daughter of a wood mill sends letters and Christmas cards to soldiers for Christmas.  Of course, one card falls into the hands of a handsome, single, and lonely guy who finds the girl who wrote the letter.  Yes, it is sappy.  But the wood lodge (house) they live in is beautiful.  The snow scenes are spectacular.  The love of a family is charming. 

"The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" is one we liked.  I mostly liked it because the male star in the movie is the most handsome dude EVER!  I don't think I will delete this movie, EVER.  He is one that has the twinkle in his eyes, messy hair, and a great sense of humor and adventure.  He isn't afraid to 'bend' a few laws to impress the girl.  I loved it!  I loved all of it's sappiness, gooeyness and him!

This guy reminds me of dentist I used to work with.  His name is Nate Yetter.  He is 'this kind of handsome'.  He has the same twinkle in his eyes, and smiles and teases and is a great dentist.  He is married to a beautiful gal, and they have a ton of the cutest kids in the world.  Watching this movie brought back some good memories of when Nat worked at Arrowhead Lakes Dentistry.  He brightened each day, gave us all nick names..... I was "Sist'a T".  He nailed that one.  I knew, and he knew, what the "Sist'a" stood for. 

So, you need to set your DVR for "The Most Wonderful Time Of the Year" and watch Henry Winkler play a conniving uncle who helps this handsome guy meet his niece and help them fall in love.  It is a cute show.

And Christmas would be complete until we watch "The Miracle on 34th Street".  I love it! 

This heart warming favorite has been around since 1947.  That was before I was born, sheesh!  But, back then  love meant something.  It was tender and strong.  Today, the soap operas have ruined what the true meaning of love is.  (Cheating and lying and being unfaithful in many ways isn't love.  It is trash.  Now you know how I feel about the time wasting, mind polluting, twisted family values of soap operas.)

Doris Walker and Fred Gailey will always be a favorite love story.  They are the reason I shop at Macy's!

And then there is "Charlie Brown Christmas".  My favorite childhood Christmas Special.  I remember when it would come on once a year, on a Sunday night.  We would schedule our family around this special.  I still love the original voices.  The original music.

 And best of all I love the Christmas message.  The real Christmas message.  The message that includes Christ.  We see signs that say "the reason for the season" and still that doesn't include what it should.  Children know the reason.  Children teach us.  They know it means more than a Christmas tree.  It means more than Santa coming down the chimney.  They know.......Luke 2:1-20.


My children have grown up listening to the account of the birth of Jesus Christ.  They hear it read by their father every Christmas Eve.  I suppose most families do the exact same thing. That is when we quit worrying about the trees, and the commercial side of Christmas. 

 Charlie Brown teaches us in such a simple way, the true meaning of Christmas.

With just a few pictures of that timeless show, you can hear the voices of the children.  You can hear the singing of the choir.

You can fill the love of the True Meaning of Christmas. 

This is what I believe!

May you enjoy the wonderful Christmas Specials on TV.  But, I pray each of us will find to read in
Luke 2: 1-20 the account of the birth of Jesus Christ.  Read it throughout the Christmas season, several times. We might try to read it every day between now and Christmas Eve. Ponder the importance of this scriptural record.  Because IT tells The Reason For The Season.  We have 12 days......12 days to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. 

Merry Christmas.
Love, Me

Friday, December 9, 2011

Festival of Trees

One crisp morning I said to DH, "I would love to go to the Festival of Trees".

He said, "OK".

And we went.

I saw some very wonderful, imaginative, gorgeous trees.

You see, the reason we went is so I could get some ideas to do the top of our tree.  I couldn't bring myself to place an angel on top of the tree one more year.  It isn't that I don't like angels, because I do.  But, I am tired of our angel.  Instead, she is a decoration on the counter in our powder room.  She lights up, and is a great night light.  That is where she is staying this year.

But, I wanted to do something, well, out of the ordinary.  Something with ribbon, sparkles, maybe silk flowers.  I just needed some inspiration.  Feathers seemed like a good idea.  You know what I mean?

I hadn't thought of using a lantern.  Hummmmmm!

My tree isn't flocked, but some of the ones I saw makes me want to get one.  But where would I put it?  I have several trees, and manage to put up several every year......but I don't think I am going to buy another one.  Although, I have a bunch of brown and gold ornaments, that don't show well on green trees.....Oh, maybe I will get another one after all..... DON'T TELL DH!

There was one tree that was completely Dr. Seuss.  I loved it!

A nursery would love this.  A Preschool.  A Daycare.  Me.
I would love to have it downstairs in the family room.  It wouldn't match anything, but wouldn't the little kids love to play around and with it!  Oh, I would if I were a small child.  That is one tree that a mama could say...."Yes, go ahead and touch!".

And the little ones could rearrange the stuff at the bottom and think they had the best grandma in the whole world.  Well, they do, so I guess I don't need to give them the tree (this year) after all.

 And there were lots of ideas for doors, and wreaths, and oh, so much to see.

And the ideas to decorate the mantel were spectacular.  Nearly everyone in my new town has a fireplace, whether it is wood burning or gas, the mantels need some attention at Christmas time.  There were so many beautiful ones. 

So, we got in the Christmas spirit and got our house decorated.  I have enjoyed every minute of it.

Now, I will confess, we had the Festival of Trees in November.  And yes, I had my house completely decorated for Thanksgiving, in Christmas decorations.  I felt a little guilty about doing it so early.  I felt just a tiny bit guilty not decorating for Fall, or Thanksgiving, but I AM SO GLAD NOW THAT I DID IT. We have been able to invite friends and family to our home, and it looks so nice and cozy.  We have watched a Christmas special nearly every night in December and with the Christmas decorations all around us, it has been magical.  Romantic.  Spiritual.  Comforting.  Peaceful.  I have felt the spirit of Christmas, the real meaning of Christmas more this year then I have in many years.  I love having the decorations done early.

I hope you get inspired to change a few of your decorations, and feel the spirit of Christmas in doing so.

Merry Christmas....Happy Holidays......

Love, Me

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Lemon Pie, Idaho Style

I love playing and playing and playing and searching and searching and ..
on the computer.  And I will give credit where credit is due.

Today, I found a new recipe: It came from Meridian Healthy Living Examiner.

Stir up a layered creamy lemon pie dessert!

Sour cream lemon pie offers a creamy alternative to traditional lemon pie recipes. For those busy Idaho cooks who aren't fond of, or would rather not fuss with meringues, just spoon this filling into a baked pastry shell and chill. It's a fast, easy, and delicious dessert!
Sour Cream Lemon Pie
  • 1 ½ C sugar
  • 3 Tbs cornstarch
  • 3 Tbs flour
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 ½ C water
  • 3 egg yolks – slightly beaten
  • 2 Tbs butter or margarine
  • 1/3 C lemon juice
  • 1 C sour cream
  • 1 baked pastry shell
Combine sugar, cornstarch, flour, and salt. Gradually stir in water. Cook in saucepan over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Reduce heat and cook two more minutes – stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir about one cup of hot mixture into beaten yolks. Combine this with mixture in saucepan and return to a gentle boil. Cook and stir for two more minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Gradually stir in lemon juice. Divide filling and pour one half into pastry shell. Allow remaining filling to cool for a few minutes. Then add the sour cream and beat until combined and smooth. Spread sour cream mixture over bottom layer of filling. Allow to cool and then chill in refrigerator prior to serving.

Continue reading on Examiner.com Lemon pie with sour cream Idaho style - Meridian healthy living | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/healthy-living-in-meridian/lemon-pie-with-sour-cream-idaho-style#ixzz1fthMqALq

Love, Me

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

Let's just say it is one of those years that you won't EVER forget.

I am going to share with you a couple of stories.  It is very important that we keep this just between you and me, as I have a reputation that would be ruined if it got out how things went down this year.  There were so many things that I can't share them all with you.  This blog has to end at some point, so I am going to tell you just a couple.  I wish I had pictures of them.  At the time, taking a picture was the last thing on my mind. 

1.  I wanted a new dessert this year.  Pumpkin Mousse Cheesecake.  My daughters love cheesecake.  I found a perfect recipe (from the Food Network). 

First, make a Graham Cracker Crust.  Sounds easy, but finding enough counter space for 3 cooks in the same kitchen makes it more difficult that it should have been.  But we got that part done.

Second, make the cheesecake layer.  That would mean using Cream Cheese that is at room temperature.  However, we forgot to get it out of the fridge.  So, let's just say we thought we could thaw it quickly in the microwave.  That didn't work.  We tried, but failed.  We whisked it in the kitchen-aid for about 7 minutes and it never got fluffy.  It was runny, as in, would have worked for a glaze on a cake runny. Yep.  Failed.

So, we got out a second brick of cream cheese from the refrigerator.  The foil was removed so it would thaw at room temperature more quickly.  An hour passed.  Finally it was ready. 

Again, the kitchen-aid mixer whisked the cream cheese for about 7 minutes (in spite of the noise and the two other chefs in the kitchen and the noise they were making).  Perfect results.  The mixture was placed on the Graham Cracker Crust and baked the appropriate amount of time. (Wish I had a picture for you.  It was beautiful....)

Knowing counter space was a premium need, the dish was placed in the garage, where it was much cooler, to cool down.  The dish was lovingly placed on the steps in the garage, where there wouldn't be any traffic, in cool surroundings, and could peacefully decline in temperature, so the third layer could be added.  The beautiful Pumpkin Mousse layer was the third layer to this dessert.

This is the stairs.  This is where the dish was cooling.

In the meantime, our neighbors, Connie and Norman were tending their daughters beautiful, long haired, aging Collie Dog named Gus. Gus is a regular in the neighborhood.  He is always tied up to their flagpole on a long leash.  He can walk into several front yards and relieve himself and then walk home.  Gus is old.  He can hardly walk so he just lays on their front lawn.  He is mostly blind, and can't hear very well.  I would have thought he couldn't smell either.  But I was wrong.

Gus could smell this special Thanksgiving dessert.  It smelled wonderful.  We all commented on the wonderful, delicious, mouth watering smell.

By now you know where I am going with this story, don't you?

Yep, Gus was put out to go potty, without having the leash attached to him.  Gus can still smell.  Gut found our garage door open.  Gus found the dish cooling on the steps.  When he was full, and had eaten all the cheesecake (cream cheese) layer he wanted he wandered home.  He was licking his chops all the way as he sundered home at the slow speed of his aging body.  I am sure he was grinning.

Just as Gus arrived home, Connie opened her door to check on him.  She noticed he was licking his chops.  Ahem.  She wondered where Gus had been.  She walked out to see where he might have gone, and saw our garage door up.  She also, saw my darling husband driving towards our garage. 

DH is a good neighbor and he stopped to wish Connie a Happy Thanksgiving.  That is when Connie asked if we had anything edible in our garage.......DH said, "Why, yes.  Our beautifully talented youngest daughter has been working all morning to make a special, world renown recipe for our Thanksgiving Dinner".

He didn't really say that, he just said, "Ya, I think so".  He doesn't talk much.

Connie, then said, "Gus just came out of your garage licking his lips".  She walked down to our house as DH pulled into the garage.  Together they came upon what was left of the dessert sitting on the steps.  It was only a portion of the crust, and no cheesecake layer.................

Our daughter had made a smaller dish for her to take to her home.  She had let the smaller dish cool inside the house. 

Once the "Dog Dish" was discovered she make a second Graham Cracker Crust.....to make the second attempt at the Pumpkin Mousse Cheesecake.

The garbage already had two other episodes in it! 

On the bottom layer of the garbage is a broken cereal bowl.  Under normal conditions I wouldn't care, except it is from my Stoneware Set.  The one DH bought me 30 years ago.  The one with the Wheat Motif on it.  The one we only use on special occasions. 

Also, in the garbage is the empty plastic container of a mystery item that fell out of the freezer and broke on the floor.  It had in it something jelly like in consistency and green in color.

It was determined that it was Jalapeno Jelly in the mystery container.  We tasted it and it was very good so we put it in another container, and found room in the freezer for it, in a safer location, and saved it for another day.

As the third attempt to make our Pumpkin Mousse

I have a new set of red glass canisters for this house.  There are three sizes.  It is the kink with the decorative glass ornate top and it has the plastic part that snuggles inside the jar part, so it keeps the contents of the canister fresh.  I keep sugar in one of the three glass canisters.  The recipe calls for sugar.

The lid of the sugar canister wasn't up to the task One More Time to make this d___ dessert. 

By now, all of us were laughing hysterically.  What more could go wrong!!!!!  The lid is not repairable.  In unison we all said, "It is what it is"!  And broke out laughing even more.

At this point DH suggested we just make an Apple Pie.  That is his favorite and I have a box of apples in the garage. (Looking back on it now, I wonder why Gus doesn't like apples?) So, we brought in the apples and DH jumped in to help.  He started peeling apples and Beautiful Youngest daughter rolled out the pie dough. 

We thought, "DH is so incredibly intelligent"!  You see, I had purchased a Pie Bird last September when we went to the Eastern Idaho State Fair.  It is a black pie bird, like the ladies in the olden days used to use.  I was excited to get out the Pie Bird and use it in the Apple Pie for Thanksgiving!

The crust was perfect, except for the part that tore.  But that is easily fixed and no one would know.  Except, I took a picture.  Somehow, it seemed appropriate to document the event.  One never knows where it might lead.

The pie was filled to the top with fresh apples.  The filling was cinnamon sugar fabulous.  The Pie Bird was singing praises for the beautiful pie he/she was a part of.  We were cheering with delight knowing we were going to have a dessert for Thanksgiving!

Into the oven the Apple Pie went.  Dessert was going to be just fine, in spite of it not being anything Pumpkin.  Who cares...... no one eating at this house.

As the last of the foods were cooking some of us could finally enjoy ourselves and relax.

The only things still to do was bake the rolls, mash the potatoes, take out the turkey, make the gravy, set the table, put the cranberry sauce in a dish, put the olives in a dish, wash up a few of the cooking pots and pans and dishes, .............. you know............just a few things..............oh, and carve the turkey.

Everyone was tired by now.  We all had been struggling in the kitchen, for what seemed like hours.

Everyone needed a rest and a love. Even the dogs were wore out from watching the kitchen floor for something to be dropped.....and me telling them "OUT" of the kitchen.

Finally, the 20 lb. turkey was out of the oven.  I now had drippings to make the gravy.  I love turkey gravy on my potatoes and the turkey.  Especially, really good gravy.  And this year I made Really Good Gravy!  I added the thickening and Kitchen Bouquet and salt and pepper and a little water from the potatoes and stirred away.  I really got into the stirring, as it was a very big pan.  It had been roasting the 20 lb. turkey.  It was big, so I had to stir kind of hard.

I love left over gravy to put on stuffing and turkey.  The gravy is the backbone of the Turkey Meal.  So I stirred and stirred to assure myself there wasn't a single lump, and there wasn't. 

However, (yep, there is more) the rolls were next to the stove rising.  They were close to the stove to get heat to help them rise.  They were really close.  They were too close!

Oh well.  It just looks bad, and doesn't affect the taste of the rolls.  Oh, and by the way.  I make really good rolls, too.  Really good.  Just add butter.  They are great to sop up gravy, whether it is after they are baked, or before they are baked.  Just saying.....

The sweet potato souffle came out of the oven.  Even though it was covered by it's second topping.  I got a little confused earlier in the day and added the topping before I was supposed to.  The topping should be added the last 5 minutes of baking.  Oops.  I added them too soon.  To fix that mistake I stirred the topping into the souffle and baked it anyway.  Then, 5 minutes before it was done, I added another topping.  They are really "sweet" sweet potatoes.

Well, I was quite finished with the whole Thanksgiving thing by now.  I was tired of being in the kitchen since 7:30 a.m. and I was tired of the mess, and I made an executive decision. 

I announced, "There will be NO table setting.  Come and get yourself a paper plate and find somewhere to eat"!

I was surprised by the reactions of the family....

Yep, Way!

I heard words like.........................."lost her mind",.......................................... "must have a ...fever".........................................  "has forgotten all about presentation", ......."where is our real mother"..............." she's kidding, right"..........................

And then there was loud laughter.... really loud laughter.

Really loud laughter, and dancing, and singing, and clapping......

Sometimes I know just the right thing to say to make my family happy.....

And as they were laughing the Apple Pie was baking.

And, as the "Little Red Hen" had ordered, paper plates were had by all the they all served themselves and then we gathered at the dinning room table and blessed the food.  We all talked about the things we are grateful for.  We all discussed how the last year had so many changes in it for each one of us.  We shared our love for one another.

We got a phone call that someone else was coming over.

We smelled something burning.....

The apple pie was leaking its juicy juices all over the bottom of the oven and smoke was coming out of the oven.

We turned on fans, opened doors and windows. 

We put the pie on a cookie sheet and put it back in the oven and smelled the burning until the pie was done.

We let the pie cool.

We bagged up leftovers for the girls to take home with them.  We filled lots of containers. 

We skyped with our California kids and couldn't get over the fat lip our little grandson had.  Another lesson learned while mastering the art of walking.  We liked seeing our kids, but we LOVED seeing our grandson.  He can just sit there and stare into the computer and make us fall all the more madly in love with him.

And then we  had some hot apple pie with ice cream.

We played Pinochle and laughed about what a fun day we had.


Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and were able to be with, or talk to your loved ones.
I am so blessed with all the things of this world and love my life.  Every minute of my life.

Love, me

ps.  did you have any exciting events happen at your house this year? 
I would love to hear about them.
Did you order Thanksgiving Dinner, and found it frozen when you wanted to eat?
Anything like that?

Please leave a comment, I would love to hear about your Thanksgiving.

Love, Me

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


With Thanksgiving only a few hours away, my mind and heart are pondering the blessings in my life and the things I am grateful for.

"Gratitude is not only the greatest of all virtues, but the parent of all others." --Cicero

This quote is partially true.  I have been taught by prophets and apostles to know there are other virtues just as important.  I don't believe one is necessarily the parent of all.  However, it is very important.

A random list of a few things I am grateful for:

  • Freedom of religion
  • The Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • My beloved and cherished Husband
  • My precious children
  • Our cherished, and longing to be with, grandchildren
  • Loving and supportive parents
  • Extended family of mine and the ones I married
  • Never knowing hunger
  • A warm comfortable home
  • Neighbors who are just like me
  • Friends, past and present
  • Modern technology
  • Small iPods, instead of big boom boxes
  • Cast iron
  • Gas range
  • A soft bed
  • A reliable car
  • Computers
  • Telephones
  • Employment
  • Clean sheets
  • Laundry soap
  • Sunshine and rain
  • Four seasons
Oh, I could go on forever.  I typed this list as fast as I could and I have hundreds of things in my head that I could share.

I hope you can take minute during this Thanksgiving holiday and count your blessings and make a list of things you are grateful for.  Share them with your loved ones as you eat your Thanksgiving dinner.

Happy Thanksgiving!  We are all blowing kisses to you!

Love, Me

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New Craft Site! Hurry and check it out.

I am so excited!

I have a new place to shop, get items at a discounted price and can do it in my jammies.

i CAN share THE news WITH you NOW.

And if you join and tell your friends you can get $10.00.


When you make a purchase I get $10.00
Then your freinds make a purchase and you get $10.00
And it continues.

i WANT all of you to buy your craft supplies and save money.

You must join this site....... IT IS FREE....

Remember:  You Must Join

The first deals are going to be available at 10:00 am on Black Friday

 . com

We are going to have so much fun:

Love, Me

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Pinterest Philphering

 If you haven't spent at least 2 hours this week looking at Pinterest, you are falling behind.

Pinterest is the new way to dream about what you want, want to make, want to have, want to touch, want to see a bigger picture, want to know the person who thought of it, want ....want.....want.....

I have to set the timer on my phone to remind me to turn it off, and accomplish something.

All these pictures you are seeing come from Pinterest.

The pictures "speak" to me.......I should just go to my studio and make something.....

Or finish something I have already started.......

But here I sit.... Looking at Pinterest.

Thinking a lot about my "Craft Club" ladies.

Wondering if they know how much I miss them.

Wishing there was a way to rewind and have ALL of us back together again.

Remembering how hard we used to laugh.

The trips we took together.

Thinking about the amount of Chocolate and M&M's we ate.

Remembering a few of the secrets we shared.

Laughing to myself as I remember some of the stories we told.

Our husbands were so supportive.  They would wait up for us to come home.  We stayed out very late some nights.  Wow.  Those men were so patient, and..... supportive.

Diet Coke has a special place in my heart, because of Craft Club.

I remember lunch at "The Spicery" in Glendale, Az.  Everyone at that restaurant wanted to be our friends and be a part of our gift exchange.  It was Christmas,  and I had made aprons for each one of them.  I packaged them in take out picnic boxes.  I remember how excited I was to give those precious friends the gift I had so lovingly made for each one of them.

We all knew presentation was 1/2 the gift!  We had been taught by the best.  Each one of us worried that we couldn't do "it" as good as the other one had.

Oh, my heart hurts as I remember those days.  How I loved them.  I loved the projects, the ladies, the time, the love.  Oh, the love.  And the gossip.  And the tears.  And the sharing.  And the eating.
TGIF and mashed potatoes....@ 1:00 am.

And because I am not with those ladies, doing Craft Club now, I have to fill my time with Pinterest.

Man, back then we could have used Pinterest to help us come up with ideas each month. 
But then we would have had to meet each week instead of once a month.
There are so many ideas out there now.
I won't live long enough to make them.

So, I will just sit here....... and DREAM, and REMEMBER, and WISH...........

Thank You my dear Craft Club.
For making my life richer,
just by knowing you.

For each one of you,
I am SO grateful!

Love, Me

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happy, in love, getting closer to retirement, love my family, love my Savior.