Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Sugar and Spice

Sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little granddaughters are made of!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

I have pink eye!!!

I woke up this morning with what it seems is pink eye! You know when your eye is blood red and seeps and crusty. Ugh! I am very familiar with this sort of thing because almost all my adult life , every time I turn around I have pink eye. Then I would go to the doctor because I had insurance. Once I had to go to an eye specialist because it would keep reoccurring and wouldn't go away. But, I haven't had pink eye for over 6 years until now! I do not have insurance because we can't afford any. DH works for a small company and they do not offer any sort of thing. Going to the doctor at the moment will kill us financially at the time. I believe this is viral and will just have to run its course I hope. If not, or worsens then I will have to see a doctor. I just can't believe this has happened as I have been so careful about washing my hands all the time and even using a hand sanitizer. I carry a small one in my purse and take it everywhere I go. I haven't worn any makeup for weeks and do not wear contacts. This is just crazy! But, I have had alot of sinus problems last week which I thought I was coming down with a cold or something. I thought I was getting better. Has anyone out there had pink eye? Did you have to go to the doctor? Looks as if I am starting the new year with a bang! or I could say I am ending the old.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Happy Monday! Hope you all had a great Christmas! I can't believe the New Year 2010 is a few days away. Most of us all have made resolutions such as live-healthier, exercise every day, no dessert, and so forth. For me it is live healthier by eating healthy and exercising more. This is an area I have been really lacking in. Eating healthier for me is lower fat foods and resolve to eat fewer processed and packaged foods. The more ingredients, the more processed it is and processed foods tend to be higher in fat, salt, sugar and additives we don't need period! Did I mention, can be higher on the pocketbook too? What healthy resolutions are you making? This weeks menu may not be the healthiest as I am still trying to use what I have on hand in the freezer and pantry at the moment and leftovers from the past few days but, it is easy, comforting and sure to warm the insides on a chilly winter day.

MONDAY- ham -n- beans,


TUESDAY- smothered chicken

mashed potatoes

tossed salad

WEDNESDAY-chicken-n- noodles

green beans

homemade bread

NEW YEARS EVE- homemade veggie pizza

FRIDAY- homemade mac-n- cheese

steamed broccli

tuna patties

SATURDAY-(breakfast for supper)

oatmeal pancakes



SUNDAY- on our own

Check out organizing junkie for more amazing menus!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesday- Merry Christmas!

Family Christmas 2009

All 5 grandchildren together- Abby, Jocelyne,Reese, Jasmyne, and Dalton

I will be taking the rest of the week off so, I want to take the time to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas as we celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Bad Dog!

I love my dog I really do, all 4 little lbs of her, but sometimes she just tries my paintence. Our dog has an attitude I mean a really big attitude! She is a yorkie shit-zu and has this thing about any of us leaving her alone You might call it seperation anxiety. We have tried a small crate and when she learned how to open it to escape we started putting a padlock on it. But that got to be a pain. I figured she would just have to get over her little attitude. She has gotten over it for the most part but, mini blinds she must hate because we have gone through at least 5 or 6 of them the past year or so. Now, if I didn't like the looks of them so well on my windows, and did such a fine job of sheilding the sun in the summer, I would probably just do the whole curtain thing. Hubby and I went to my parents yesterday to drop off their gifts. Usually I always pull up our mini blinds before I ever leave the house. I figure this is easier in case the little fur ball gets any ideas. Yesterday was one of those days I forgot. oops! When we got home we got an early Christmas present! My mini blinds had been annihilated! There were mini blind pieces chewed into on all over the floor and the mini blind had a real nice chewed up opening! Bad dog! Now, if I hadn't of been so mad I would of taken a picture but, I was fuming big time and all I could think of was to take the hideous thing down and pick up the mess. Has anyone else had this happen to them? If any of you out there has had this problem, you probably already know it's good to have a backup mini blind to hang until you can get a new one., unless you want an ugly bare window staring at you in the face. We found our old one, which is a bit dusty and tiny piece chewed into from one another time. It is hung up in the destroyed blinds place. This will have to do until we can get another new blind. As for Sassafrass, she got a scolding of her life and didn't receive any more pup r roni doggie treats for the day. I will have to be a little more better at remembering to raise the blinds up before I leave the house.

Menu Plan Monday

It is Christmas week, ahhh ...Just a few days now until Christmas and it really doesn't seem possible at all. As I have said before Where did the time go? With our family Christmas behind us, which was a success, a bit crowded and noisy, it was so neat to have everyone here together once again. Little Dalton and Reese are growing up so fast. I was amazed that at only 3 years old Reese could spell her name, could recite the Pledge allegiance flawlessly and use such big words like the word "cooperating." This week will be a bit more relaxing. My sister will be here for Christmas eve and Christmas day DH and I will be ourselves. Our menu this week looks like this...

MONDAY- Ridiculously easy crock pot roast ( I will put some carrots and potatoes in with it), dinner rolls

TUESDAY- Beef and noodles ( made with leftover roast) corn

WEDNESDAY- I am not sure yet as we have some last minute errands in town that day

Christmas Eve- potato soup, chicken salad sandwiches on whole wheat bread from the mill, small relish tray, Homemade gingerbread w/real whipped cream, Christmas cookies and candy

CHRISTMAS DAY- spiral ham, scalloped potatoes, green beans, pumpkin roll, Christmas cookies

SATURDAY- ham sandwiches, leftovers

SUNDAY- leftovers

Be sure to check out orgjunkie for more amazing menus!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Free ecb's from CVS advisor panel

Even though Christmas is approaching way too fast this year and it has kept me busier than ever. I haven't been too busy to at least keep up with my e-mails on my computer, as they tend to accumulate fast if left unattended to.

I belong to several survey sites , one of them is the CVS advisor panel This site is amazing and I will tell you why. The CVS advisor panel sends surveys to panel members in return for the feedback, survey participants are rewarded with extra care bucks (ecb's). Throughout the year, CVS advisor sends you invitations to participate in online surveys to receive your input about CVS stores, products, and services and obtain suggestions on how they can improve CVS. To tell you the truth, I was a bit sceptical if I was ever going to receive a survey from them because I joined the panel last year and never heard from them until now. The survey was easy and maybe took 5 minutes of my time and was worth it. I received $5.00 in extra bucks which could be helpful with the upcoming deals at CVS next week. If you have a CVS store near you these ECB"S are much greater their meer face. A $10.00 ECB can purchase $100.00 in merchandise ( more or less) and earn additional ECB"S toward your next purchase. Becoming a member of CVS advisor panel is free. Click here to sign up today!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

This week is going to be another busy week indeed. As I have mentioned before, Friday is our family Christmas with all the kids and grand kids. There will be 8 adults and 5 grand kids. I have most my baking done and most gifts are all wrapped and under the tree. I am really looking forward to seeing everyone together. Please pray for safe travel. I love entertaining and baking goodies sometimes I can get carried away. I am going to have to make it simple this week as well as on Friday. So, my menu looks like this for this week.

MONDAY- layered Mexican bake, corn souffle ( this didn't get made last week)

TUESDAY- boxed Kraft mac and cheese, green beans, smoked sausage


THURSDAY- tomato soup, grilled cheese, apple sauce

FRIDAY-( our family Christmas) sloppy joes, nachos, relish tray( pickles, celery,carrots, olives) assorted candy,cookies pretzels, nuts, cheesecake

SATURDAY-crock pot chicken and stuffing, corn, mashed potatoes

SUNDAY- leftovers

Be sure to visit org.junkie for more menus! Here is a recipe for maple walnut fudge I made this year that is really simple and delicious! Hope you enjoy!

Maple Walnut Fudge

1 1/2 cups sugar

2/3 cup evaporated milk

2 T butter or margarine ( I use butter)

1/4 tsp. salt ( you can omit if you like)

2 cups mini marshmallows

2 cups (12 oz pkg) Nestles toll house white morsels

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1 1/2 tsp. maple flavoring

About 50 walnut halves or pieces

Line 13x9 baking pan with foil

Combine sugar, evaporated milk, butter and salt in medium, heavy duty saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil, over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 4 1/2-5 min. Remove from heat. Stir in marshmallows, morsels, nuts and maple flavoring. Stir vigorously for 1 minute or until marshmallows are melted. Pour into prepared. Place nut halves in rows spacing about 1/2 inch apart on top of fudge. Press into fudge. Refrigerate until firm. Lift from pan. Remove foil. Cut into pieces with 1 nut half per piece. Makes about 50 pieces

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Giving to others in need will help you realize that you might have more to be thankful for than you think. Yesterday my Dad and I talked about what we could do to help my son who is living alone, no job, no vehicle ( his truck doesn't run and he doesn't have money to fix it) no food, no nothing really. I worry everyday about him alot. He never asks for help. I know depression when I see it as I was in depression once upon a time when I was with my first husband. I worry about his faith and have talked to him about our savior Jesus Christ and that God loves and cares about him, but my son feels alot of pain right now with no job, no money, and with a broken down truck, no way to find or get to a job. Does his father help him? not to my knowledge. With winter upon us, it doesn't help with the worries. I pray everyday for him as any mother would do. Okay, so everyone knows that Christmas is supposed to be about giving and not receiving., so, my Dad went through his pantry and freezer, my sister found a few items, my mom threw in some extras and hubby and I ourselves went through our pantry and freezer. We all gave a little bit of what we had extra of. We ended up with a very large box of food. We dropped off the box of food at my sons house today. I want to tell you how awesome this felt. I hugged my son and told him I loved him and with tears in my sons eyes he took the food with such gratefulness and I imagine after we left he had to have been crying because, I know I did. So, this Thankful Thursday I am thankful for my son I am so ever thankful that even though we struggle ourselves especially at this time of year, that I was able to share some food from my stockpile. I am thankful I have the ability through couponing, sales and sorts that I can achieve this stockpile. I am thankful that I have such a loving and caring husband who treats me with so much love.and who loves my children as his own. I don't have to worry about sinking into depression ever again. I am thankful for my heavenly father who loves me and I love him. For my sister, my dad, my mom and the contribution of their own stockpile. So, is anyone out there doing something special for someone in need lately? For me, this Thankful Thursday I will not forget. More than receiving gifts, the true meaning of Christmas is in sharing. It matters neither the grandeur nor the price tag of what you give for it's the thought that counts, that matters.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Candy

I was making Christmas candy today and I thought I would share some of it with you. These two recipes I make every Christmas. They are very frugal and very simple and oh so good! These are so easy to make a child can easily make or help make.

*Microwave Rocky Road Fudge

6 oz. semi sweet chocolate chips

6 oz. butterscotch chips

1/2 cup peanut butter

3 cups mini marshmallows

1/2 cup salted peanuts (opt)

Place chips and peanut butter in 2 qt. bowl, microwave on high uncovered 2-2-1/2 min. until softened. Stir until melted smooth. Stir in marshmallows and peanuts until evenly coated. Spread in 8x8x2 buttered pan. Refridgereate until firm at least 1 hr. cut in squares.

*No name really, very addictive!

Take cherry twizzlers ( I use strawberry)

cut 2-3 inches in length

dip in melted chocolate

Yummy, taste like chocolate covered cherries

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Let it snow!!

Those needing winter weather to help them get into the Christmas mood need wait no longer. Here in northern Indiana it's snowing. UGH! Some of the reasons I don't like winter is directly related to the cold. I can't stand how my lips and hands get chapped. I use so much lotion and chap stick this time of year, or scraping frost or ice off the car windows or having to wait for the car to get warm enough for the heat to work. Driving on snow covered roads can almost give me ulcers. It's quite simple, I am not fond of winter. For hubby and I winter is a tough time of year. I would just love to do what the bears do and hibernate until Spring. But, I can't, so I must deal with it. I will embrace the winter season and let my inner child have some fun maybe perhaps I can take the stress out of the winter season this year. I can think like a child. Remember making snow angels when you were a kid? One year my hubby made a stellar snowman. The grand kids called it Mimi. Papa makes a Mimi every year now for the kiddos. I can feed the birds. One of our greatest joys is our bird feeding stations in our backyard. It is right outside the dining room and living room windows. I love watching the many birds who come to eat. The joyful little calls really lift me up and make me happy and the gorgeous red cardinals or blue jay against the white snow...Sublime! The lively spot of color in an otherwise dreary landscape is wonderful. Put out a bird feeder near a window where you can watch the birds. You will be amazed at how much they perk you up. I can ice fish with the hubby I know, seems a bit odd for someone who hates the cold and snow as much as I do but, if you are catching fish one right after another like the hubby and I did one winter, you kind of forget all about the freezing cold until you have to pee and there is no where to go and it means if you do find a place , you have to take off everything just about, just to go, Brrrr! I'm guessing ice fishing is not a woman thing. But, it is so rewarding to catch more fish than the darling husband of mine. So despite the cold and snow winter weather has to offer. I say, Let it snow!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

My hubby is is layed off for the winter now, the weather report sounds cold and nasty for the next few days so eating from the freezer and pantry is a must. No shopping this week! Money is tight for a bit until unemployment benefits start coming in. This makes me so ever thankful for the bit of the stockpile of food at this time and for menu planning. This week our menu goes like this....

MONDAY- tuna melt sandwiches, potato soup, mixed fruit

TUESDAY- fried pork chops, hash browns ,peas

WEDNESDAY-*Layered Mexican bake, corn souffle

THURSDAY- venison and noodles, Harvard beets

FRIDAY- pancakes and sausage, mandarin oranges

SATURDAY- shepherds pie, homemade bread

Be sure to check out organizing junkie for more menu ideas!

* Layered Mexican bake

3/4 lb. lean ground beef

1 onion

1green pepper chopped

2 tsp chili powder

1 1/4 cups thick N chunky salsa

1 pkg ( 10 oz) frozen corn

3 high fiber whole wheat tortillas ( 8 inch)

1/2 cup light sour cream

3/4 cup sharp chedder cheese, divided

Heat oven to 375 degrees

brown meat with onions and peppers in large skillet on medium-high heat. Stir in chili powder; cook 1 min. add salsa and corn; mix well. simmer 5 min.

Spread 1 cup meat sauce onto bottom of 8 or 9 inch square baking dish; top with layers of tortilla, 1/2 cup meat sauce, sour cream, and 1/4 cup cheese. Cover with 1 tortilla, 1 cup of remaining meat sauce and 1/4 cup of remaining cheese; top with remaining tortilla and meat sauce. Cover with foil.

Bake 25 min. or until cassaerole is heated through. Top with remaining cheese; bake uncovered, 5 min. or until melted.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Bethlehem the day after Christ was born

Today my husband and I went to Bethlehem the day after Christ was born. They call it Bethlehem Marketplace. My old church, Fairview Missionary, every year puts this event on. This year marks the 20th year. It's amazing and an awesome reminder of the reason behind the season. We try to never to miss this event.The Styrofoam city and sandy streets come to life with a cast of 200 fairview attenders talking about the exciting news of the birth of a baby boy they call Jesus. In costume everyone portrays what it was like in Bethlehem in the days after Christ was born. While you wait to go thru the streets of Bethlehem you are seated in the Sanctuary where you listen to beautiful Christmas music which is all done from fairview people as well. I believe for some of us, our lives get so hectic and busy with opening presents and visiting family that the whole reason behind the season gets forgotten. There are gifts that are more important than the ones under the Christmas tree. Remembering Christ at Christmas time will make your holiday celebrations so much more meaningful and happy. Take time this Christmas to give thanks for the birth of Jesus Christ who came to us so very simple and the importance of the sacrifice He made in our behalf. Give your heart to Christ. Let him be at the top of your Christmas list.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Club Bing

Have you tried club bing yet? This is a great site if you like to play games and be rewarded. People who know me know I am not one of those people who enjoy spending all day on the computer playing games. It is just not my cup of tea. However, I do enjoy this site. It has many games to choose from to play. I enjoy chicktionary where you unscramble the letters to make words. In turn you get tickets depending on how many answers you get right. Every time you play games you earn tickets ( up to 1000 per day) I started playing awhile back because I needed a new kitchen timer and I am too cheap to go out and buy one. So, when I saw I could win a kitchen aid digital timer from the selection of prizes I went for it. The UPS man came today and I am now a proud owner of a brand new kitchen aid digital timer and it couldn't of came at a better time as my sister and I will be baking cookies this Saturday. This little timer will get some use. If you like playing games I urge you to check out and join club bing It's addictive and there is so many neat prizes to choose from. It didn't cost me anything, just my time. It's free, it's fun.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Tis the season

There is absolutely a relationship between how busy I get and how much I blog. Our family Christmas is in a couple of weeks and I am so unprepared. I have put some things on the back burner and now honestly this has left me feeling exhausted and disorganized. It seems there is so much to do and so little timeand this can be overwhelming. Today, while playing Christmas music over our satellite tv and trying to get into the Christmas spirit of things, I wrapped up some gifts but, I have alot more to do because we have to finish shopping for the kids and grand kids ( this can be hard when you are on a limited income) which is why, I have been making some of my gifts this year. One of these gifts are throw pillows I have been working on and all I need to do now on them is finish stuffing them and sewing them shut. I am also making some gifts in a jar like homemade cappachino mix. I made sand art brownie mix in a jar last year for the girls and they loved it! Sending out Christmas cards to family and friends that live far away is important to me. I try to write a personal note to everyone along with the card. These will get done sometime this week or beginning of next week. Hubby will be hunting this Saturday, this is giving me my no man time to bake Christmas cookies all day with my sister. I am really going to enjoy this time. The house is going to smell soooooo yummy!