Thursday, December 12, 2019

2 Easy Peasy Recipes - Just for Fun

I am late I know!  Today was Social Security day - YIKES!  I promise I will do a blog on all that real soon.

First I just wanted to share a couple super easy yet very tasty recipes that may relieve the stress of your holiday baking some.
Everyone gets in a hurry and tries to make all kinds of goodies - but seriously - NO ONE needs it and why STRESS over it.    Just use the K.I.S.S. principle  (keep it simple silly).

                                                                Such a sweet picture



Click on the peanut butter cookie recipe to enlarge - I know it is hard to see.

There you go.  It can't get much easier than that and they both taste good.  I usually use mini loaf pans when I make banana bread and I can get 4 to 5 out of a recipe easy.  They are great to wrap up after cooled, and give as presents.
I wrap and keep in the refrigerator until I need them.


HAPPY STRESS FREE BAKING!!!!


Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Keeping It Simple

Tis the season!  Well, this year I am not feeling it.  We all have times in our lives that make the holidays less joyful.  I did put out an item or two to decorate.  I do love lights and decorations - but for me, this is a keep it simple year.  I know there are many others going through this as well.  My heart aches for each of you.
I am not looking for sympathy - I just want you all to know that whatever you do or don't do - IT IS OK!  You have to decide for yourself.
We do what we can and want - and go forward baby steps at a time.

Little Santa and my sweetie amongst the flowers and angels

Snowman and angels and candles galore.  I love the seasonal scents

My sweet snowman I received as a homemade gift

Merry Christmas snowman

Can't forget my little leg lamp (from The Christmas Story movie)  Fra-gi-le'!!!!!

Yep, this is the tree this year



Decorating and making the house festive is nice, but that is truly not what the season is about.  We should be keeping the reason for the holidays in our hearts every day.  We should live it every day.
We should spread the joy and love and giving every day.
Things in life change - that is a given.  The ONE thing that never changes is the love our Savior has for us.

Keep the joy of the season in your hearts and lives every day.  Trust me, you will get as much or more out of life by doing that, than by doing anything else.
HONOR those not with us this year by living your best life.

KEEP CHRISTMAS ALIVE  3.6.5.
Blessings my friends

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Weekly Wrap-Up 12/8

Good morning all.  Here we are one week into December.  My goodness the time is just flying by.  We will be celebrating a brand new year in just a few short weeks.

This past week has brought us some sunshine, which has greatly been appreciated.  We actually got a few days of sun and that doesn't happen much in December.  It is commonly known in our area to be the cloudiest and darkest month of the year.  We even had decent temps.  Momma and Fluffy (outside cats) sure have enjoyed the nicer temps and the sunshine!  They love playing and rolling around and sunning!  Things, they are going to be a changing!  Rain comes in tomorrow, and then the bottom drops out for a few days and we get a huge blast of cold!  Yep, it is winter in Indiana!



My week:
  • Made a batch of squirrel treats - they sure do love them
  • Cleaned and organized the freezer in the frig
  • On Monday I froze the leftover turkey breast 
  • Made soup (turkey/rice/veggie) and froze much of it as well
  • Made a big feed store run
  • Cleaned and polished the kitchen cabinets
  • Ordered the jerky and summer sausage that is given as gifts every year.  Ordered on Tuesday from Ohio and received it on Friday
  • Did a little bit more small item gift shopping 
  • Got my printer working again
  • NO grocery store this week
  • Made some more jar recipes up for gifting
  • Dealing with Medicare/Soc. Security this week trying to get things set up.  I have been in tears a lot, nothing was working out.  Finally figured out the problem and now have to go into the office instead of doing this on-line (that will be a post of it's own!)  NOTHING is as easy as they claim!!!
  • In trying to do above with Medic./Soc. Sec. I went through tons more paper work and tried to organize it
  • I did buy the trim paint for the inside of house.  I haven't started painting yet - but I have it!
  • Went to a family get together and dinner at my nieces.  Nice afternoon/evening and got to see another niece from out of state (rode with my brother/sil).  Got to enjoy seeing some pretty Christmas lights on the way home - haven't done that in years.
  • Doing all the regular stuff

Meals this past week:
Turkey/nacho cheese open face sandwich melt
Turkey/rice/veggie soup (homemade)
Chopped beef patty and fried potatoes
2 mini cheese burgers on leftover dinner rolls and some chips
Chicken bites and fresh cauliflower/carrots/olives with ranch dressing
Sausage/egg sandwich and a milk shake
Dinner at my nieces - lasagna and salad

I know I accomplished things this week, but it doesn't feel like it.  So much of the week was just downright frustrating!  Oh well.  Live and learn.
I hope this coming week is productive.  I will try to get this Medicare thing done and hope to get what shopping I need to do - finished.  I need to get the cards done as well - that didn't happen last week!

How was your week?  Are you ready for Christmas?  Any great frugal deals this week?

I pray for you and yours and hope you all stay well and safe.  Be happy, be healthy, and be frugal my friends.  God bless you all.
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.



Thursday, December 5, 2019

Don't Worry - Be Happy

You all sang that phrase in your head, didn't you!  LOL

I just wanted to give you all a little reminder that all the worrying in the world isn't going to change things.
Worry will not change your situation - actions will change your situation.
Worry about others, isn't going to help - it just makes you feel worse.
Worry never solved anything!
YES, I do it too!  I try not to, but I do.  We all do.  It seems to be a part of our DNA.
Does it help?  Not really.

There are so many situations going on in the world that just has people up in arms every day.  I continually see all the posts on FB about this shortage and that shortage.  This recall and that recall.  Financial insecurity, climate change and global warming.  Doom and gloom every day.
I don't know about you - but I am so sick on this continual bombardment of negative.



Yes, things happen.  Yes, we need to be aware.  But it sure can be over whelming.
We all need to do what we can to be prepared for anything AND we all need to  continue to live a happy life.  Don't let stress take over.
I do believe that some of these things are real, but I also see many things as way to drive up prices.  Greed is real in the world - never forget that.   I see many as politically created situations, and that just ticks me off.  I see many as just precaution - and they say that  nothing has happened, but let's be safe.  That's cool.
These things have been happening for decades.  Weather events have happened, disrupting farming.  Financial ups and downs have happened many times disrupting lives.
Do I believe it is happening more often?  Not really.  I think we are more aware and hear about it more often, because of TV and social media.  Have any of you ever read the book The Jungle?  My goodness, it tells of the meat packing industry back in the day and it is repulsive and horrific.  I actually quit eating meat for a while after I read it years ago.  These things aren't new!!!!!
Our ancestors persevered and so will we.  Things happen and things change - that is our history and our future.  Just be responsible for yourself and your family and you will move forward.

As for myself, I take a lot of it with a grain of salt.  I am going to continue to do what I do - prepare for the future.  I am not going to panic.  I will continue to have faith.
So should you.

I have many people question my faith.  The big question is "how can you have faith today?"  I just do.  It is part of me and without having faith, I would be nothing.
I know there are those who do not have the religious faith I have - BUT you all believe in something.
People set their alarm clocks each night and make lists of things to accomplish.  They plan vacations.  They save money.  They stock their pantries.  They plant seeds in the garden, hoping for veggies. You plan parties.  You do medical treatments and procedures to make you healthier for tomorrow.  You buy gifts for the upcoming holiday...……………….  the list goes on and on.

That my friends is FAITH.  You have faith that the next moment or day or week will happen.  IF you plan ahead, you have some kind of faith.
So have faith that all will be ok.  Be responsible, do the good deed, have hope, love one another and move forward moment by moment.


DON'T WORRY - BE HAPPY!
Let's all make this our motto for 2020!!!!

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

REQUEST FOR A REPOST

JENZ, a reader here, requested that this article be reposted as a reminder of doing good to help others.
I have to admit, she had a much better memory than I.
Here you go JENZ and for everyone else.

Let us open our hearts and help those less fortunate not just at Christmas, but all winter long.  Watch the sales a do something good and kind for just a little money.

Article on Dec. 7, 2018 

Click on pictures to enlarge for easier reading

So many non-perishable items are needed everyday.  Tuna, pasta, peanut butter, jelly, canned meats of any type, sauces, canned veggies or fruits, cereal, oats, etc.
It takes very little to brighten someone else's day and maybe help fill the belly of a hungry man, woman, or child.

Thanks JENZ for a great reminder.
Blessings all.



Tuesday, December 3, 2019

A Couple Last Minute Makes for the Hard to Buy For

Three weeks and counting - oh my.
There are always those people who are hard to buy for.  Of course there are some people who will never be happy, no matter what they receive (sadly).
You all know I am a homemade kind of gal.  I am working on gift baskets this week.  Some things are store bought (especially for the teens), but much is homemade.

Here are a couple ideas that may help YOU or may make a fun GIFT idea for someone else.

BIRD SEED GOODIES
3/4 C flour
1/2 C water
1 envelope unflavored gelatin (sold at most grocery stores in multiple packs)
3 Tbsp. corn syrup
4 C - birdseed, crushed nuts, dried fruit, etc.

Mix the first 4 ingredients together and then mix in seed/nuts.  You can use just regular bird seed, sunflower seeds, whatever you have.
You can place in plastic suet packs (re-use old ones), or you can spread this our in a shallow pan or cookie sheet.  Score to cut later - if you want it in the size of suet feeders.  Let this dry overnight and finish cutting.
I just made a double batch as squirrel treats.  They love it.  I cut mine into 1/2" - 1" bites.  They sit and eat them like cookies!  Adorable to watch.
So, if you have a friend that loves nature and feeds the birds and squirrels - this is a super easy make and brings nature much happiness (as well as the watcher of nature!)
Packed them up in the suet containers, or cut and package in 'cookie' bags or some other sort of plastic container.
This was the double batch I put together Sunday.  Spread out on an old cookie sheet to dry.  I then cut into small bites for squirrels.  Storing in an old ice cream tub.
Here's some I made in older suet containers.  They are a perfect in the suet feeder and the woodpeckers loved them.
***Along this line you may also think about GIFTING  a bag of bird seed, a bird or squirrel feeder or suet feeder or a thistle sock filled with feed (I see them at the grocery all the time).  There are many gifts that the naturist would enjoy.  Maybe even a book on birds of the area!


GRANOLA
12 C rolled oats (old fashioned)
2 C nuts or seeds
1/2 C packed brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt.
1 C coconut oil
2/3 C honey

Preheat your oven to 350*
Whisk the coconut oil and honey well to combine thoroughly.  Combine with all the dry. 
**** I like to leave the buts out until almost the end of baking time - or they tend to burn or scorch!!!!
You ALSO can add dried fruit if you like - dried apples or pineapple, dried bananas, cranberries, raisins, etc.  (I put this in closer to the end as well)
Grease 2 cookies sheets (with sides) or use parchment paper.  Spread out the granola mix evenly on the sheets.  
You are going to bake about 30 minutes TOTAL.  Stop and stir mixture every 5 minutes or so.
Add fruit in at about 20 minutes into baking and nuts at about 25 minutes into baking.
Remove from the oven and let this all cool COMPLETELY before packaging.
Makes nice containers of granola (use what you have) or place into baggies.
I like to make with a label that states  - eat as cereal or just as a snack.  Spread over yogurt or ice cream.
This is going in some of my baskets this year!!!!!


So there you go.  A couple more easy and frugal ideas for gifts for that hard to buy for person (or just yourself).  Either one of these makes a nice addition to any goodie bag.

Have fun and enjoy!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Weekly Wrap-Up 12/1

My oh my - it is December!  How did that happen?  24 days till Christmas!!  YIKES
This year has been a real blur and I can't believe it is now Christmas time.  My goodness - we will be entering the 'roaring twenties' in a month!

We have had a lot of rain this week.  I am over it!  BUT, I am very glad it hasn't been snow.  Wind and more wind came through Wednesday.  It was crazy.  We had wind gusts of 60/65 mph.  I am so thankful the trees had no leaves, as the wind met no resistance.  Funny thing, the wind managed to corral all my leaves into a couple of areas, so they are rounded up and ready for me to pick up when the rain stops!  This coming week should be normal temps for the season and dry.

My week:
  • I worked on painting a lot this week in the bathroom.  I did take off a couple days and the old back was screaming "stop".  I have a couple spots to touch up - but the painting is done and it looks so fresh and clean.  It is all put back together!!!
  • I put up just a border instead of papering the bottom half of room.  
  • I did go and buy a new shower curtain and throw rug.
  • I changed out the bathroom door handle with a new one I had here
  • I stopped at Lowes this week and picked up many paint samples.  Trying to match the trim in the house.  It is 30+ years old, and I could not remember the name.  I brought home many and tried and found an exact match!  I will go and get paint this week to refresh all the trim in the house.
  • Colored hair
  • Did some shopping for small gifts and stuffers for teens (not Friday!)
  • I made a batch of brownies to take for Thanksgiving at nieces.  They were a hit
  • Put up decorations for Christmas on the doors
  • Did a huge update on the computer
  • Brought home some goodies - food and dessert from nieces
  • Made a turkey breast in the crockpot on Friday - so juicy
  • All the normal weekly stuff
  • I ran to Kroger on Friday and 5 - 4lb. bags of sugar for .99 ea.  I didn't need it - but will put it back for later (at that price).  I also got 4 GC's for gifts and got 4X the gas points for purchasing those.  That will sure help with gasoline purchase this month.  I also got 2 nice heads of cauliflower for .99 each in mark-down bin
                                              Old time lighted tree.  Got photo bombed!!!!

Meals this past week:
I kept things light and easy this week - just too busy
Leftovers from the frig
Beef/bean burrito (homemade)
Tostada's (used leftover beans and beef)
Small pizza from freezer
Thanksgiving Day - meal at nieces
Cold turkey sandwich, mac n cheese and dessert (all from nieces).  She made the BEST mac/cheese!
Turkey and dumplings (Sweet Sue)
Too many desserts!

I am over sweets for a while.  They have started affecting my vision.  I have low blood sugar and sweets really mess with my eyes.  Need to break on all sweets for a while.

This week I plan on putting turkey up.  Make a pot of soup.  Go to feed store. Get as much Christmas done as possible.  Go get trim paint.  Get out all my baking recipes for holiday goodies.  Get my cards done.
MAYBE - start to watch some Christmas movies I have recorded.  I haven't watched ONE yet!  I keep recording.  Glen loved Christmas shows and I just haven't had the heart to watch.  I know he wouldn't want me to miss out - so maybe!

I hope you and yours (in U.S.) had a great Thanksgiving.  Did any of you brave the craziness and go shopping on Black Friday?  That is not for the faint of heart!
Did you stay frugal this past week?
Hope you are gearing up for Christmas - it sure is close at hand.

I pray for health and safety for each of you and your families.  Stay safe and stay frugal.  Be kind and help others if possible.
Blessings from my humble little home to yours.