Tuesday, December 25, 2012

It's Christmas!

It's the most wonderful time of the year!
Yesterday morning it started to snow. When I looked
out the window and saw the snow I screamed real loud.
My husband was worried until he looked outside-
then he knew, because I act like this every year about snow.
Even though it was a skiff- it was still fun to watch it come
down and drink hot chocolate. Around here we call that
a Swiss Alps experience.

But we have things more exciting than snow!
We have a Savior who came to save us from our sins-
and he can make our sins as white as snow.
I am just so thankful for Him and His sacrifice
of coming in a manger and then dieing for us
on that wooden cross. Praise be to Him!

Duke in dog heaven. He loves when Josh gets out the four wheeler.

Duke enjoying a drink after chasing Josh on the four wheeler.

 These two are quite a pair.

I just can't help but think of the parents who lost their children
in the school shooting. It makes my heart hurt for them.
Hold the ones you love a little closer this year-
and live life like you mean it. With a purpose.
Because in the end that's all that really matters.

Thanks to all of you who follow me here-
it has been a wonderful journey.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cajun Chicken with Avocado

I noticed that avocados were on sale at two 
grocery stores this week so I stocked up. I wanted 
to make chicken with fresh avocado topping
and came up with this. The first time I made this Josh
was concerned that I didn't put it on the blog.
So, this evening I wrote down the recipe
while I made it. When he took his first bite
he said, "this will be a hit on the blog."
Funny he is and sweet, too.

  Sprinkle chicken with seasonings and let set a few minutes.
Heat oil in skillet and fry until done.

 Serve on a bed of cheesy potatoes.

Cajun Chicken with Avocado

10 small chicken breast

2 Tbsp. Cajun seasoning
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper

Mix together Cajun, salt and pepper. Sprinkle on both sides
of the chicken and let set a few minutes. Heat a 1/8" canola
oil in a skillet and fry chicken on medium heat until done.
About 4 minutes per side.

3 large avocados, cubed
1/4 onion, diced
1/2 juice of a lemon
salt and pepper to taste

Mix together and put in fridge so flavors can set.

Cook some cubed potatoes in butter, salt and pepper.
When soft add a few slices of white cheese, (provolone or farmers).
Pour in a little half and half. Heat until cheese is melted.
Spoon potatoes on a platter and top with chicken
and avocado mixture.

 A sneak peek of a few Christmas decorations around here.
Fresh greens are my favorite this year.


Friday, December 14, 2012

There's Another Boy!

Charity and Wes welcomed a little boy
into this world last evening.
 Caleb Paul Weaver is this handsome
boys name. A gift from God indeed.

We were sure it was a girl-
but we sure were wrong.

Here are some photos for Grandma
and Auntie who live in Indiana.

 Precious little Caleb, I got the chubby cheeks I wished for.

He had a hard day sleeping- hence the yawns.

Proud parents. Charlie is not sure about the new little one.
So much for him being the center of attention. Sorry Charlie.

So this is where all the heart burn came from? 
Your poor mother ate lots of tums for your gorgeous locks.

We love you so much. And we thank God for this answered prayer.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Christmas Wreath Making

Tonight was the annual Christmas wreath making.
Yes, I am the queen of making things annual.

Go here and here for photos of previous years.

Christmas music filled the air while we sipped
coffee and hot coca. There were stories 
to be told, about things of old.
Okay, my corny poem is not making sense.
My husband would say that I'm on a Christmas glitch.

Hannah brought an old wooden cheese box to fill.
What a wonderful idea it was. 

Thank you ladies for the festive evening.


Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Cookie Bake 2012

Today was the 6th annual cookie bake/exchange
with Noel farm ladies and my friend Karana.
It was another wonderful time with
family and friends. It's so nice to have such
a variety of cookies to take home. 
Go here for last years photos.

Here are photos of the cookies and candies from today.
No, I am not telling you where I put them.
It's hard enough to keep my husband out of them.


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Three Colored Coconut Candy

Three colored coconut candy is my husband's
favorite candy. Therefore I have learned how
to make three colored coconut candy.

It is a wonderful candy with an interesting texture.
The gelatin makes it slightly spongy.

 The cutting process.

Box and hide them from your husband. Then give away.
He is always complaining about me giving away all the goodies I make.

Three Colored Coconut Candy

2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 Tbsp. butter
dash of salt

1 1/2 Tbsp. unflavored gelatin
3 Tbsp. cold water

1 1/4 cups of coconut
1 tsp. vanilla

Dissolve gelatin in water and set aside.

Combine first four ingredients in a saucepan and heat to boiling.
Stirring constantly, boil to 232 degrees. Remove from heat.

Spoon gelatin into a mixing bowl and pour hot sugar mixture
over top. Mix on medium-high for about 4 minutes. The
mixture will turn white and creamy. Add coconut and vanilla.
Beat a until coconut is mixed in. Pour into greased 9 x 13 dish.
The mixture will be similar to melted marshmallows-
you will have to get a spoon and spread it out.

Repeat layer 2 more times. For the second layer add a few 
drops of red food coloring with the coconut. For the third layer 
add 3 Tbsp. of coco powder with the coconut. 
When cool- cut into pieces, as shown above.

This recipe is in the Esther Shank cookbook. I use milk
instead of cream. I also added a few directions.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Homemade Marshmallows

I am trying to go back to the basics this
Christmas and make most of our gifts.
 Homemade goodies in cute packaging
are just as good as a pair of socks- if not better.

I started last night with homemade marshmallows.
They are like little squares of Christmas cheer.
Next is homemade hot chocolate mix to pair with these.

Once set, flop your marshmallows out onto a area dusted with powdered sugar.
Cut in 1.75 squares, and then quarter. Dust sticky sides with powdered sugar.

Bag and enjoy. We are eating them like candy around here.
I'm going to have to start smacking some fingers.

Homemade Marshmallows

3 Tbsp. unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup cold water

1 cup water
3 cups sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Soak gelatin in 1/2 cup cold water for 20 minutes.

Combine water and sugar. Bring to a boil and cook until syrup
reaches 236 degrees. Remove from heat. Place dissolved gelatin
in a mixing bowl and pour hot sugar mixture over top.
Beat on medium high for 10-15 minutes until mixture becomes thick
and fluffy. Add salt and vanilla. Pour into greased 9x13 dusted with
powdered sugar. Let set overnight. Flop out onto area dusted with
powdered sugar. Cut into 1.75 squares and quarter the squares.
Dust sticky sides with powdered sugar and bag.

This recipe is from the Mennonite Community Cookbook,
with a few directions added.


p.s. More homemade gift recipes coming...