Friday, December 31, 2010

Check out the party

Stop over and visit Linda at Prairie Flower Farm she is having a great party.  She will be giving away A Gooseberry Patch Cookbook.  She also has some new things for sale.  Check them out! 

Friday, December 24, 2010

Wishing You A Merry Christmas

Luke 2:7-19 (KJV)

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger;
because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 
Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

As you reflect on the Christmas story this year,
may its meaning be new in your heart.
Have a Blessed CHRISTmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Cactus

I have a Christmas Cactus that was my moms.  When mom got sick in September of 1993 she had me take home one of her Christmas Cactus's .  This cactus had never blossomed for her.  That year to my surprise the cactus blossomed for me.  It was so beautiful!  Since then it has only blossomed a few times and never as much as that first year.  I believe God gave us those blossoms when we needed them most.

I have kept it alive over the years and it has grown some.
It has been a couple of years since it has blossomed. 
This year it has about six blossoms on it.  YEAH!
I think of mom and how much we still miss her at this time of year.  She loved Christmas.
Mom loved the Lord and her family and it showed in everything she did.

I decide today to make my four year old niece some doll cloths to go along with her Christmas present.

 This will be fun, it has been awhile since I have made doll cloths.
Off to start sewing!

Merry CHRISTmas!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Winter Wonderland!

Yesterday we woke up to a  Winter Wonderland, it was so beautiful out side.  My pictures do not really show how it looked.

I had to go into town in the morning and wish I had taken a camera.  It may be cold here, but days like this make it more bearable. 

Made a batch of cut out sugar cookies so our grandsons would have some to decorate later today.  Also made up a gift package for my neighbor.  She has had a very bad cold for a while now and is having Christmas at here house this weekend.  Their three daughter and families (ten grandchildren all of them little) will be home for the weekend.  With working and being sick she hasn't had the time or ambition to do much baking.  Made her up a gift bag with cookies, frosting, and sprinkles to enjoy decorating with the grandchildren. 

Have a school Christmas program to go to this afternoon, then celebrating our grandsons birthday later. So hard to believe that our oldest grandson will be thirteen tomorrow.  What a blessing he is. 

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 13, 2010


I was reading a Christmas devotional this morning and it was talking about Christmas morning without wrapping paper.   With out the wrapping paper the joy would be short lived as it is exciting to unwrap the gifts to see what is in them.

God created us in a way that causes us to enjoy the process of discovery.  Have you ever noticed that sometimes it is more exciting finding something than having it? 

God tells us in scripture to seek Him.  Proverbs 8:17b   And those that seek me early shall find me.  
Jeremiah 29:13  And ye shall seek me, and find me,when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

God could have revealed all of His truth to us right from the very beginning, but He chose to reveal Himself to us a little at a time.  God allows us to enjoy the process of discovering Him.

Don't let yourself get discouraged over what you don't know about God, but be excited about unwrapping all there is yet to discover.

God's gift of Himself to us
is a present we will always be unwrapping.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Snowed In!

Snowed in this morning. Some places we had huge drifts and other spots there was almost nothing. The news reported the the highway from Marshfield to Stevens Point was impassable this morning.  The grandsons were excited to be snowed in and have to spend another day with us.  Although they were looking forward to hearing grandpa sing in church this morning.  Will definitely be having a white Christmas this year.

The neighbors snow pile looks like it usually does close to the end of winter. 

Had to shovel out the drift to take the dog out this morning.  

Spending a quiet day at home.  Grandpa and the boys watched the Packer game and I watched  "Wind At My Back" Christmas special. 

Finished the Advent Calendar that I was working on.  Decided to hang it as a wall hanging instead.

And she shall bring forth a son,
and thou shalt call his name
for he shall save his people
from their sins.
Matthew 1:21

Saturday, December 11, 2010


We are getting snow, possibly up to 14 inches with blowing!

 This pictures is a little fuzzy from the blowing snow!

Grandson out doing some shoveling until Grandpa gets done at the neighbors and 
blows our driveway.  He went out into the yard and let the snow from the snow blower hit him and
came in covered with snow.  Said it was like being in a blizzard couldn't even see the house.  Made his day!

Yesterday I had to sub in the pre-k room, there were 28 little ones.  Went from that to helping at the preteen  Christmas party at church last night.  The kids had a lot of fun.  They sang, had a short Christmas devotion, played charades acting out titles to Christmas songs, did an ornament exchange,  played musical chairs, decorated their cookies and finished up with ice cream sundaes.    The boys had a lot of fun.

Spending the day with the grandkids, making popcorn balls, fudge, and watching some Christmas movies and enjoying the snow.

It's snowing harder and the wind is picking up, I think we will be snowed in soon!!!!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

It's A Wonderful Time of the Year

The stockings are hung with care.

The tree is decorated.
With help from our grandsons.

Grandpa put on the lights and the garland and the boys did most of the ornaments for me.

Standing on a chair to reach the top, trying to hide a Packer ornament!

The house is decorated.

We have had this nativity set for many years.

This set is very special to me because it was my mom's. 

The Christmas village.

Have to have some snowmen.  

Baking has been started and some of it already eaten!

These cookies are for a Cookie Exchange this Saturday at my cousins.
Chocolate Chip cookies with M & M's and white chocolate drizzles over them.

When I need a break a nice cup of Christmas Tea (Russian Tea)  hits the spot!

Russian Tea

10 c. water
3/4 c. sugar or honey
5 tea bags
Bring water and sugar to a simmer and add tea bags simmer for about 10 minutes.
 Remove tea bags.

1 - 12 oz can frozen orange juice concentrate undiluted
1 - 12 oz. can frozen pineapple juice concentrate undiluted
1 tsp. cloves

Add to the simmered tea and simmer an additional  20 minutes.
Serve warm or cold.

Later today my plan is to get some gifts wrapped.  My husband is working a shutdown tonight and tomorrow so it will give me some time in the evening to do some wrapping and sewing.  Still have a couple of gifts that need to be finished.  


Saturday, November 20, 2010

We celebrated Thanksgiving

On Thursday we celebrated our Thanksgiving with our grandchildren.  Because of work schedules we had to celebrate early this year.  We have so much to be thankful for the Lord has been so good.     

  For the first time that I can remember we are putting up our tree before Thanksgiving.  Tomorrow after church during the Packer/Viking game we will put up the tree.  Our grandsons want to help put up the tree while they are here.  I will wait and put up the rest of the decorations after Thanksgiving. 

This week I will be busy subbing at the school, they aide that I am subbing for has to go over to the special ed room at the high school in the afternoons.  I get to take notes in two different classes.  It has been many years since I have had to do that.  

Have a good week!

Friday, November 12, 2010

I am finally getting a chance to update my blog.  It seems time has just slipped away from me.  Here are a few of the things we have been up to.

Getting the garden ready for winter.  The little part that  jogs out in the front is my new strawberry patch.  Not looking to good at this time.  Quite a few of the plants didn't make it after the heavy rain we had earlier.  Hopefully enough will come through the winter that I can replant some runners next summer.

Finished a couple of projects that have been around for a while, this one is a fall piece that I made for the back of the rocking chair. 

This is a flannel lap quilt that I have had the material for a long time.  It has been a slow work in progress.  The material was bought from a quilt shop when we lived up north, that has been 4~ 1/2 years  ago.  Finally cut it out two years ago, sewed it together last winter and finished it a couple of weeks ago.  This wouldn't seem so bad if it was something complicated! 

Had a surprise birthday party for my husband.  His birthday is really the day after Christmas.  It seems that we always end up celebrating Christmas with part of the family on his b-day. So this year though we would change things up a little.
So this year we planned a little party on a night the grandsons were staying over.  They thought it was great celebrating early like this.  Grandpa enjoyed the surprise too. 

Then there was the Packers verses the Vikings game!  As you can see we have fans of both teams.  One grandson and his dad are Viking fans (really a fan of who ever is playing against the Packers) the other one along with the rest of us are Packer fans.  Things can get quite lively at times during these games ;o)           That is a little bit of what has been going on around here lately.  
We are having our Thanksgiving next week so I have been doing some baking and shopping to get ready.  Also working on a few more sewing projects that I can't show, they are Christmas gifts.  The past two weeks have also done a lot of subbing.  

The weather man is saying we may have some snow flurries this weekend!  I am hoping!!!!  

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Found a use for the yolks!

The smells from the kitchen were good yesterday.  Along with getting the cider ready to can and baking cakes, there was also a roast, squash, and potatoes in the oven for supper.  These smells just say fall to me.

One of the Angel Food Cakes ready for the oven.

Ready to eat with strawberries or layers of Neapolitan  ice cream, maybe both!

Champion Angel Food Cake

1~1/4 c. sifted cake flour
1~3/4 c. sifted sugar
1~1/2 c. egg whites 
1~1/2 tsp. cream of tarter
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
  • Sift together flour and 3/4 c. sugar
  • In large mixer bowl beat egg whites, cream of tarter, salt and vanilla until foamy.  Beat in remaining 1 c. sugar, 2 tblsp. at a time.
  • Beat until meringue holds stiff peaks that still are glossy and moist.
  • Divide flour-sugar mixture into 4 parts.  With rubber spatula, gently fold each portion into meringue until flour-sugar mixture disappears.
  • Push batter into ungreased 10" tube pan. Gently cut through batter once with spatula to remove air bubbles.
  • Bake at 375F 35 to 40 minutes, or until cake springs back when lightly touched with finger.
  • Invert pan and let cake cool before removing.

I found this recipe for some of my egg yolks.

Butter Sponge Cake

11 egg yolks
2 c. siffted sugar
1c. milk scalded
1 tsp. vanilla
2~1/4 c. sifted cake flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 c. melted butter
  • Beat together egg yolks and sugar until light-colored and fluffy.
  • Add milk and vanilla.
  • Sift together flour and baking powder.  Add to egg yolk mixture. 
  • Fold in butter
  • Bake in 2 greased 8" square pans in 350F oven, 30 - 40 minutes.  Cool on racks.  You can put the layers together and frost.

Both of these recipes are from my Farm Journal's Country Cookbook.  I bought this cookbook along with Farm Journal Freezing and Canning Cookbook right out of high school.  These two books have been used many times over the past thirty-five years.  

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Finished projects & baking

This past week I have been working on some projects, and actually finished a couple of them.  Also have a couple more that I am still working on.  The first project that was finished is a wall hanging that was started last Christmas for my daughter.  Thought it was about time to get it done so she can use it this year.  It wasn't even anything difficult, just kept putting it off.

Tammy saw this panel in the quilt shop in town and like it.  

At the Shop Hop I bought the Lil' Twister and finally got around to making something with it.

  On Saturday we were going to visit some friends and wanted to take her a little something.  She also quilts, so I took along the Lil' Twister so she could give it a try.  She had fun and wanted to get one, so we went to her local quilt shop and they were out.  

The Christmas runner I made to take to my friend.

Working on a fall one for myself.  Having fun with this little template.  It looks like so much piecing, but all you are doing is sewing together squares, cutting them apart, and resewing them.

The egg whites are at room temperature so it is time to get going on a couple of Angel Food Cakes.  One of my husbands favorite cakes.  Now I need to find a recipe for all those egg yolks!
Canned up the apple cider this morning ended up with 17~1/2 quarts.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Apple Cider

On Tuesday I went to Mary's, she is an Amish lady that I have gotten to know since moving here.  It has been fun getting to know them and spending some time with her family. 

This is the Amish farm, took the picture from my vehicle before anyone came outside.

They had just come in with a load of corn for the silo.
Her daughter was doing the wash.  Normally they wash on Monday, but went to pick up their daughter that had been at her brothers to help for a week.
  Here are the apples that were left from our tree after making applesauce and freezing for pies.
They will be turned into cider.
 Before going to make the cider, I washed and cut the apples in the morning so everything would be ready.

The cider press.  I put the apples in the hopper and one of Mary's boys turned the handle to chop up the apples.  It was hard to keep up with him.  It didn't take to long and you could start to smell the apples and for the bees to show up.  

Pressing the first batch of apples.  I got a five gallon pail and this soup pot about one third full.  It only took us abut 45 minutes to press the apples.

My finished cider.  The cider still needs to be strained when I get home.  Strained a small amount and had a glass of cider, it was so good.  Will definitely be making cider again.  Hot apple cider will be good this winter.  
Now I am trying to decide do I freeze it or can it?  Not sure which way is best, doing a little research and talking to a few people.  If you have made cider would love to hear how you stored it.  

Enjoying another wonderful fall day here.   

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Soup & Cookies

We are still enjoying beautiful fall weather.  At times the weather seems a little more like summer around here.  A week ago we went up north to list our house, the renters are moving the end of this month.  It was such a pretty drive even with the occasional rain shower.  I had my daughters camera with us so took a few pictures from the car.

Some places where just starting to change.

There were trees from full color, to just starting, to being done already.


The colors across the lake didn't show up in the picture, it was so pretty.

A little Baptist church that we go by.  Someday I want to attend a service here.

We are praying for a quick sell for our house.  This was an unexpected turn in events for us.  I am so thankful that our Lord holds all of the details in his hands.

My daughter gave me this cookbook, it has so many fun recipes in it.  Made a batch of cookies yesterday from this book.  Only 622 more recipes to try!

Oatmeal s'mores Cookies

1/2 c. soft butter
1/2c. shortening
1 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
2 eggs
1~ 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 c. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1~1/2 c. quick cooking oatmeal
1c. chocolate chips
1c. miniature marshmallows

  1. Cream the butter, shortening and sugars.
  2. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one.
  3. Beat in vanilla.
  4. Combine flour, baking soda and salt: gradually add to creamed mixture, mix well.
  5. Stir in oats, chips and marshmallows.
  6. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto greased baking sheets.
  7. Bake at 350F for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from pans and cool. (they can be a little hard to get off the pans, marshmallows tend to stick)
  9. Enjoy with a cold glass of milk.

Turkey Barley Soup
adapted from Simply in Season
8 c. chicken or turkey broth
1~1/2 c. carrots chopped
1c. celery chopped
1/2 c. barley
1 small onion
1tsp. salt
pepper to taste
1/2 tsp. each poultry seasoning, ground sage
1/8 tsp.  dried thyme
2c. chopped cooked turkey

Combine in a large pot.  Cover and simmer 1 hour.

Was very good.  Forgot to take a picture.

Will be going to make my apple cider at the Amish farm this afternoon.  Hopefully I will be able to get some pictures.