Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas is Coming.

Just a few pict of the decorations in the house. There are some of my snowmen on my mantle and it goes down to the table beside it. Then the tree. This tree had mostly sentimental ornaments on it. There is one from the year I was born and then we gets ornaments every year from our vacation or something that helps us remember that year. There are not a lot of the boys ornaments on it. They have their own tree in the upstairs hall way.

Friday, November 19, 2010

BT goes to see WWE

so at a little pushing by hubby (didn't take much arm twisting) I got tickets to take my middle son, 9, to go to wrestling. He doesn't watch it a lot but likes the characters and figues. It was a great experience. A little backgroung on why I was the lucky one to take him. When I was little and we had 1 black and white tv (Remember those days?) and we had to take turns picking shows on the weekend. Well my dear, older, brother figured out how to work it that he got to watch wrestling. I hated it and mom's answer was "well go outside then" That didn't sound like fun so I would cave and watch it. That became a bond that I was able to have w/ my brother and to some extent still do w/ him and 2 of my cousins now. I have watched it over the years and see the change in it both good and bad. When I was in high school Dad, beeing the sweet guy that he is, took me several times as well as gotten me tickets to go w/ friends. So fast forward many, many years to now. We surprised him with tickets and he was thrilled. WE had a completly unobstructive veiw of the stage and entrance ramp. Plus a front row seat to all the pyro (thanks' WWE employee that warned all of the kids and adults in our section when they were about to go off). Once we got past the boring part of the NXT filming (trying to find the next superstar that are currently all women) we got to the good stuff. We had a good show, and a lot of fun. I will remember this for a long, long time.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Day After

Well it's not only the day after Halloween but the start to a new month. And it's Monday so it's also Meal Plan Monday. A lot going on today. Here is the monsters ready to go get some candy. Monster E is Mario and would wear his costume every day for a week while he played Mario on the Wii. BT wanted to be the grim reaper but the closest we could find was some guy from Harry Potter but close enough while Big J was a goohl. How do you spell that word? Any way they got around 1/2 the neighborhood and got a pumpkin full of candy (which by the way is about 1/2 a target bag). Big J's friend and his mom also joined us so that was fun.
Here is our meal plan for the next 2 weeks (minus some sides not listed I have to decide on):
M-Pizza Repeat (in other words all the pizza I bought for Halloween and every body was too excited to eat)
T-Chicken Manicotti w/ garlic bread
W-Pork Chops w/ broccoli
TH-Stuffed Spaghetti Pie
F- Calzones
M-Cheeseburger Casserole
T-Broccoli chicken bake
W-beef w/ veg all casserole
TH-Stuffed Shells
F-Chicken patties w/ French Fries
Happy first day of Turkey Month.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Well here it is, Halloween and thee last day of October. Fall is upon up full tilt and we are on the downward slide to Christmas. Good thing those of us at Magical Holiday Home believe in preparing early.
So we were cleaning house the other day and I moved the automan that goes w/ this chair, my chair. Well the Snoopy has claimed the automan as her bed. I guess since we moved it she decided she was going to take over my chair...nice...Time to get up puppy mommy needs her chair back so I can get on the computer and talk about you now...
Happy Halloween friends.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Holly Jolly Friday

On the way to help a halloween party for Monster E I ran into target. From the last time I was there the amount of Christmas stuff has doubled. I just wish I had more time to take it in. I am sure that when I go on Monday to look at the clearance Halloween stuff I will find plenty of time to look at it then.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Anothe Rudy Day

Well here is it Rudy day again. The times is passing so quickly. There is only one more Rudy day till Christmas. Wow! Yesterday also started the Christmas countdown. Time to really start prepping/planning. I have stuff written in one place and not the other so I need to work on getting everything in all the places (my main Christmas notebook as well as my purse notebook)

Yesterday I spent my day working on my Christmas cards and listening to Christmas music. I got alot done but after counting how many are on the MHH card exchange I have more to go. I will try to take some pict tomorrow and post them. Today I did more cards and had Christmas in Conn. on in the back ground.
Maybe I can stretch out Rudy day just one more day...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Menu Board

I got this ideas from the Fly Lady facebook page. Since I have been working hard on menu planning and sticking w/ it I wanted to find a fun way to display it. It's a picture frame and I used my circut to cut out the days of the week and now that I have a new program am going to try to cut out "whats for dinner?" also. Where the photo goes I can use different scrapbook pages to go w/ the current season or kitchen decor.

When doing my menu for 2 weeks I try to assign a type of food to each day.
Monday-hamburger, Tuesday-chicken, Wednesday-pork, Thursday-pasta, Fun Friday (things like sloppy joe casserol, calzones...) and the weekends I don't cook.

Friday, October 15, 2010

I made this cute clipboard for Monster's student teacher that is leaving his class today. I wanted to add something else to it but ran out of time. I think next time I will put the teachers name or something more to it. I got this idea from the frugal girls websight. so cute and easy. Hope she likes it. If it seems to get a good reaction from the other teachers in the room I may make them for them for Christmas also. Heck maybe i will make one for me. Why not right?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Happy Columbus Day

Today was a hot busy day. It Oct. but Virginia forgot to look at the calendar and thought it was still summer. It should be low 70s yet it was upper 80's. I wonder if this is the Indian Summer I bread about in the Farmer's Almanac. Any whooo while Hubby was off riding the motorcycle all over Richmond I took the boys off to Chuck E Cheese for some game time. It was not crowded so it was a nice place to hang out. After Hubby got back we took off for the pumpkin patch. For $20 all you can carry so we loaded him up and got a bunch. It was hot, dusty and sweaty but again, not crowded so a nice change from last year when it was really busy. On the way home we swung by Bass Pro Shop for a bit, Dicks Sporting good then Party City. At the party store the boys got their Halloween costumes. Home and then bed. It will be a short work/school week and I will be busy w/ the usual stuff. Nice to have a family day.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Melting Monday

Yes, once again I am posting a day late but better late than never. Fall was finally in the air I was not melting b/c it was hot but b/c I was melting a lot of cheese. It was a good day to cook inside. I made a 4x's batch of Broccoli Cheese Soup and decided while I was in there to make a big batch of broccoli, chicken in white sauce to freeze. I am slowly stocking my freezer w/ some good fall/winter foods.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Practice Sunday

Today is a wonderful fall day. Cool temps outside w/ a fire in the fireplace. So I decided to do another trial run on Christmas cakes. I finally found some pans (hurray for Michaels and Ben Franklin crafts and their mini individual baking pans for $1) and baked the apple oatmeal cake for the teachers. I disovered I may need more pans if I plan on baking more at one time. However I doubled the recipe and had enough for the 6 mini loaves at 1/2 full b/c it's a heavy bread and the pan tha makes 4 mini jack-o-lanterns.They are cooling now and then I have to put tog. the goodie bags for the other teachers. Monster E will take the 3 w/ the candy corn dish rag, the apple cake and candy corn. I wrote a poem for it:
A Corny Poem
Candy corn is sweet
And so are you
So here's some to eat
And one to wash your dishes too.

Silly but effective. I want to make a few more dishrags for friends and family but we'll see....

Monday, September 27, 2010

More Saturday Baking

I know this is Monday but I was having sight issues over the wknd. So here I am now. Another Saturday and a Rudy Day wknd so I decided to try another cake for Christmas. This was Vanilla Wafer Cake. It turned out ok. It's not bad but not my favorite I don't think. I also learned that I need more butter and flour in the bundt pan b/c it fell apart tyring to come out. Didn't get any Rudy day stuff done so that's dissapointing. It was as vanilla flavored as I thought it would be.
It's also a new start Monday for me. I need to start watching my food, I have gained weight, uugg, and have been listening to Fly lady, she has a lot of good idea. First baby step is to drink more water, I know I am underhydrated so off to drink more water. Here is the recipe:
Vanilla Wafer Cake
1C butter (2 sticks)
2 c sugar
6 eggs
12 oz box of vanilla wafers crushed
1c pecans chopped
1/2c milk
1 t. vanilla extract

cream butter and sugar tog. Add eggs one at a time beating after each. Add remaining ing. Pour into greased and floured bundt pan. Bake at 325 for 1 1/2 hrs. Let cool in pan before removing.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Baking on a Saturday

I like to bake however I often am quite the mess when I do bake. I make a huge mess and sometimes mess up what I am making. Today was a good example of that day. I started off w/ the idea of making a carmel apple cake. I started reading over the recipe only to realized I wrote that I needed butter but not how much. This came from a recipe I copied somwhere so no way to check. I googled it and dind't see somethign similar so i went to my back up Gooseberry Patch Country Baking cookbook. There were 2 different Apple cakes so I finally decided on which one. Apple-Oatmeal Coffee Cakes. Started measuring out ingredents and realized I dumped in double the amount of cinnamon I needed. Oops started to pull some out off the top of the flour. Looked at my recipe to see the next ing. to see that Iwas looking at the one for Walnut pumpkin bread. Oops again. I compaired the 2 and saw I also put in too much allspice. Pulled some of that out also. Thankfully I caught it before I use something else I should not have and had to start over. This time I covered up the wrong recipe so I wouldn't do that again. Baked them in 2 mini bundt pans and in a pan that makes 4 mini jack-o-lanterns cakes. you don't see the faces in the cake but I wanted mini loafs b/c if I liked it I will make more for the teachers w/ the candy corn dishrags. I am still looking for a mini loaf baking pan. Well they turned out wonderful!! I am going to make these again. Soon... Here is the recipe.

Apple-Oatmeal Coffee Cake
1C flour
3/4t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1/4 t both allspice and cinnamon
1c sugar
1c quick cooking oats
1/2c oil
1 egg
1t vanilla
1c apples cored and chopped (I used granny smith)
1/3c nuts chopped (i used walnuts)

Mix tog. dry ing. Add remaining ing. Mix will be think. pour into greased 8x8 pan. Bake at 350 for 35 min.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Candycorn and peanuts

Unlike our favorite Nick Jr video where Moose sings "I don't like candy corn" one thing I love about fall is Candycorn and those little pumpkins. I especially love mixing candycorn and peanuts. Yum!!! I have to hide it so that I won't eat it all at once and so the rest of the family won't eat it also. This is my first candycorn dishrag (thanks to tezsocks' blog). Monster E wants it to be ours and since it's the first it will be. I plan to make more to give to friends and teachers. I made it in a day so hopefully I can get a few done easily. So go get some candycorn and peanuts and enjoy fall.

Monday, September 13, 2010

An unplanned Rudy Day

So Sunday Sept. 12th I had a unplanned Rudy Day. Monster E was sleeping, Hubby was sleeping, the other boys were at friends and the house was quiet. I found my Christmas card box, opened the screened door in the kitchen to enjoy the cooler weather, lit a Christmas candle and got to work. I didn't get nearly as many done as I had hoped but I got some done. It takes a while to finish eash one. I don't have the inside worked out yet but to make the background of the snowglobe I put covered the inside cover w/ a 2 sided piece of paper w/ the Christmas print facing inside. I will use a smaller piece of the same paper as a backgroud to what ever stamped text I end up using. Any way what was in each snowglobe is different and the glitter shakes around in it. It was a nice, relaxing way to spend part of the day.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Weekly Menu

Now that the boys are back in school I am back to try my hand and menu planning. I am making a list of things that everyones likes and putting them in a seperate cookbook/notebook to pull ideas from. If it is something I want to try from a cookbook I list it on a notecard under the right section then note what cookbook and page. I worked out a plan for 2 weeks (weekends not included) and will work from that. I set a meat for each day (ie Mon-Chicken, Tues-Groundbeef, Wed-Pasta) then work from there how I am going to cook it and what the sides will be. Here is what I have for this week and next.
Mon-holiday Pizza
Tue-ranch chicken w/ noodles and corn
Wed-ha cha cha
Thur-Pork Chops w/ broccoli casserole
Fri-Baked Ziti

Mon-Beef steaks w/ green beans
Tues-pretzel chicken, noodles, broccoli
Wed-meatloaf, mashed potatoes, corn
Thur-pork cops w/ ?? some side to be determined
Fri-stuffed spaghetti pie

It's so much easier for me to shop and plan ahead when I make a meal plan. now to stick with it.

Happy eating

Back to School

Well it's that time of year again. Back to school. Monster will be in 1st grade and despite the fact that he has some issues being still
he is really excited. BT has decided that 4th grade will be borning.
He will be in a all boys class this year so, after she gets back from maternity leave, he will have the same teacher his big brother had in 4th and 5th grade. Big Man will be in 6th grade, he is a big Middle Schooler. He is excited about the change. Lockers, changing classes, new friends (He doesn't know any one in any of his classes). It's going to be a full year in our house.
With the start of them in school it's the start of new stuff for me as well. I can start focusing on the Holiday Grand Plan, Holiday House Work Plan and generally getting my house back after the long summer. I hope to start stocking some freezer foods also.
Here's to Fall, now where is teh cooler weather?

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Last day of August

In honor of this being the end of August I am burning my margarita candle and it smells yummy. I am ready for summer to be over. It has been a long hot summer for us. It was nice to get to take the boys to the beach and the mountains but time for school to start and some routine to be back in the house. Plus I am ready to have my husband home on the weekends. Plus we are on the down slope for Christmas. Now we have a holiday every month and the next few months will fly. Better get going on the Holiday Grand Plan and Holiday Housework plan to get prepared for the holidays. I am ready are you?

Last day of August

Today is Aug 30th and I am glad to see August end. It has been a long hot summer. We have had some fun and am very thankful that the boys and I got to take a trip to both the mountains and the beach with my parents this year. But it's time for school to start and thigs to go back to some version of normal. Time to put the Holiday Grand Plan and Holiday housework Plan to work and start with some meal planning. My goal this year it to stock my freezer with frozen meals. That was my plan last year and I never made it. This year I am planning beter and will get some stuff put up.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Simple Sunday

Today is the start of a 1/2 week of August and 1/2 week of September. That means school will be starting soon (yeah), hubbies summer job will be comming to a end soon (yeah for us, not so much for him) and hopefully coolet weather. Plus its the start to our Holiday Grand Plan prepping ourselves and our house for Christmas.
Not too much going on here in our hosue today. I, as always, have the usual stuff to be done like putting away laundry and cleaning the kitchen. I decided to try the coconut bread from my Gooseberry Patch Quick and Easy 2 cookbook for Christmas gifts. I like the way it taste, it's similar in flavor and texture to Impossible coconut pie. My only problem w/ it was that it overflowed in the oven and then one side fell some. It may not be pretty but it tasted good.
I took snoopy out for a walk and broke in my Walmart version of shape ups. I guess we will see after using them for a while if they make a difference. At least my knees were not hurting but I took the short circle today.

Coconut Bread
1/2 c butter (1 stick) softened
1 c sugar
2 eggs
2t coconut extract (I didn't have any so I found a alternate where I used 1 1/2 t vanilla and 1/4t
almond extract)
1c sour cream
1 c sweetened flaked coconut
2c all purpose flour
1t baking powder
1t baking soda

blend tog. sugar and butter in a mixing bowl. Beat in eggs and extract. Stir in sour cream; add coconut. Mix well and set aside. in another bowl combine dry ing; stir into butter mixture. Pour in greased 9x5 loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 45-50 min.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Happy Rudy Day

Well it's the 25th of the month and that means is Rudolph Day! There are only 3 more left until the big day, so 4 months till Christmas. Wow. This Rudy day also starts the month of the elf over at Magical Holiday Home. After only two years I already need more ideas for those little trouble makers. They always have such wonderful ideas over on MHH that I am excited about this one. Time to break out the Christmas notebook and start making notes.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Terriffic Tuesday. It is amazing outside today! The temps are not going to break the 80's and it's the first time in months for that. It's a reminder that fall is on the way. I have the windows open and the boys and I went to the park so they can run off some energy. Today is day 2 of our walking plan at MHH using one from Better Homes and Gardens. It's nice to have some one else tell me how much to walk each day then I just need to dake the dog out and do it.

I am enjoying some Rudy Day stuff today by printing some pages for my Holiday Grand Plan and Holiday Housework Plan notebook. is a great sight for that stuff and those of us that love being organized or need help at it.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

My Saturday

Well I got the bread made. It's similar to the texture of a pound cake. It turned out good. I was able to work it so that I put in mini chocolate chips in just half to try it that way. I liked it better, but then again how can you go wrong w/ chocolate chips and peanut butter?

I also got the next name sign done for my nephew. Once I get this darn blog lay out working right. I can see from looking at my Christmas blog 2 yrs ago I can obviously get this all worked out but right now my brain is off and it's just not working for me :)
Happy Saturday.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Christmas Bread trial

So mom gave me her Gooseberry Patch Country Baking book and I am on a quest to make some different breads to try fro Christmas gifts.
Here is the first one I tried:
Cherry-Chip bread
2C all purpose flour
1C sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2tsp salt
1/4 c margarine
3/4c water
1 egg, beaten
3/4 c marashion cherries, drained and chopped (about a small jar)
1/2c mini-chocolate chips

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in margarine until particles are the size of coarse meal. Stir in water and egg. Fold in cherries and chips and pour into a lightly oiled 9"x5" pan (I used a bread pan). Bake at 350 for 50-60 min. Cool in pan for 10 min then removed from pan and cool completly on wire rack

I thought this was really good. I enjoyed the flavor and it had the slight seasonal flavor of Chocolate covered cherries. I think I only quartered the cherries and next time will make them into smaller pieces.

My plan this weekend is to try this one also
*Peanut Butter Bread
3/4 c sugar
1/2c panut butter
1 t vanilla extract
1 3/4 c milk
2 1/4 c all purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

in large bowl blend together sugar, PB and vanilla. Gradually stir in milk; mix well. Sift tog. flour, baking powder and salt; add to PB mix. Put in greased loaf pan for 45-50 min at 350.
I'll post after I make this and see how it is. It would prob. be good w/ chocolate chips also.


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