Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

                   Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends, family and followers. May you all have a happy and blessed day.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Crescent Wrapped Brie

Crescent-Wrapped Brie
can (8 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls or 1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury® Crescent Recipe Creations® refrigerated seamless dough sheet
round (8 oz) Brie cheese
egg, beaten


1 Heat oven to 350°F.    2 If using crescent rolls: Unroll dough; separate crosswise into 2 sections. Pat dough and firmly press perforations to seal, forming 2 squares. If using dough sheet: Unroll dough; cut crosswise into 2 rectangles. Pat dough to form 2 squares.    3 Place 1 square on ungreased cookie sheet. Place cheese on center of dough. With small cookie or canapĂ© cutter, cut 1 shape from each corner of remaining square; set cutouts aside.    4 Place remaining square on top of cheese round. Press dough evenly around cheese; fold bottom edges over top edges. Gently stretch dough evenly around cheese; press to seal completely. Brush with beaten egg. Top with cutouts; brush with additional beaten egg.    5 Bake 20 to 24 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Pumpkin Caramel Monkey Bread

Pumpkin-Caramel Monkey Bread
cup granulated sugar
tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
cans Pillsbury® Grands!® Flaky Layers refrigerated biscuits
cup packed brown sugar
cup butter
cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)


1 Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 6-cup (9-inch) fluted tube cake pan or angel food (tube) cake pan with cooking spray.    2 In large food-storage plastic bag, mix granulated sugar and pumpkin pie spice. Separate each can of dough into 8 biscuits; cut each biscuit into quarters. Place 6 to 8 biscuit pieces in sugar-spice mixture; shake well. Continue to add more biscuit pieces to sugar-spice mixture until all are completely coated. Place biscuit pieces in pan.    3 In 1-quart saucepan, melt butter, brown sugar and pumpkin over medium heat. When mixture begins to boil, cook and stir 1 minute. Pour over biscuits in pan.    4 Bake 35 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Place plate upside down over pan; turn plate and pan over. Remove pan. Serve warm.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Trim a Tree

This is a link sponsored by Better Homes and Garden. You actually trim a Christmas tree from lights to garland and then you can send it to a friend or family member as a Christmas card. Hope you enjoy!!

Stocking Advent Calendar

A Stocking Countdown Calendar

  • 25 socks
  • Marker
  • 25 mini clothespins (available at craft supply stores)
  • Stocking hangers, painter's tape, or pushpins
  • 6-foot length of cord, string, or ribbon
  • "Get Out of Chores Free" or "Pick a Movie Rental" cards -- each good for one use!
  • A puzzle distributed in pieces among the socks; kids can put it together over the course of the month
  • Trading or sports cards
  • Special coins such as foreign currency or a silver dollar -- chocolate coins are always a hit too!
  • Music or other gift cards
  • Jokes or riddles (stick the punch line in the next day's sock; see AZKIDSNET.COM for ideas)
  • A game (a Mad Libs or Sudoku a day)
  • Art supplies, such as a mini paint kit and pad
  • A special ornament to add to the tree
  • A new pair of socks!

  1. To make your "calendar," fill the 25 socks with small treats, using our list of suggestions or your own ideas.
  2. Use a marker to number the mini clothespins with 1 through 25.
  3. A Stocking Countdown Calendar - Step 3 To assemble the calendar, use stocking hangers, painter's tape, or pushpins to temporarily hang a 6-foot length of cord, string, or ribbon within easy reach of a child. Clip the treat-filled socks to the cord in numerical order, then each day have kids remove one to discover their surprises.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Fall Napkin Rings

Fall Tableware
These rings will add a colorful fall flair to your Thanksgiving table. And they're so easy, you can even make extras to send home with your guests.

  • Cardboard tubes
  • Acrylic paints
  • Hot glue
  • Autumn decorations such as silk leaves, acorns, fake fruit, small pinecones, and the like (sold in craft stores)

  1. To make some, cut 1-inch sections from cardboard tubes and paint them inside and out with acrylic paints.
  2. Once they're dry, hot-glue on autumn-themed decorations. Allow the glue to dry completely before using.

Wishing Spool

Wishing Spool
Forget about postage to the North Pole. When kids roll their wish lists onto these cute-as-a-button spools, Santa will snap to attention.

  • Acrylic paint and brush
  • Wooden thread spool
  • Marker
  • Paper strip, cut to fit the width of the spool
  • Doubled sided tape
  • Ribbon
  • Self sticking label


    1. Paint the spool and let it dry.
    2. Have your child write her Christmas list on the strip of paper.
    3. Roll the paper around the empty spool, using double-sided tape to fasten it, and leave some of the list hanging down (so Santa notices).
    4. Thread the ribbon through the spool's center and tie a knot at the top for hanging. Write your child's name on the self-sticking label. Affix it to the ribbon.

    Wednesday, November 16, 2011

    Pinecone Turkey

    This place-card companion might not take center stage, but it will still be a welcome addition to your table. To make the head and beak, bend a 3-inch piece of brown pipe cleaner, and affix it to the top of a pinecone with craft glue. Glue 3 feathers (available at crafts-supply stores) near the base. Station one turkey at each setting with a place card

    Gift Tags

    Think twice before tossing pieces of ribbon or card stock left over from a project; attach small bells or evergreen sprigs, and transform your scraps into charming gift tags

    Holly Napkin Holder

    Dress up the dinner table with napkin holders made from felt holly leaves and a jingle bell.. Trace onto felt; cut out shape. Fold each leaf in half lengthwise, then steam with an iron to create creases. Thread a jingle bell onto the middle of decorative cording. Tie cord around base of leaves, positioning leaves at bell; knot. Tie cord behind folded napkin

    Fall Flowers

    Fall Flowers
      Although these flowers are pretty on their own, the arrangement gets an extra special touch with a pumpkin vase. The flowers were arranged in a glass vase, which was placed inside a hollowed-out yellow pumpkin

    Simple Thanksgiving Place Cards

    Super Simple 
      Richly colored velvet ribbon elevates a basic place card to elegance. Fold a square of cardstock in half and write a name on the front. Punch two holes, about 1/2-inch from edges of card, along the fold. Thread ribbon through the holes, tie in a simple knot, and let the ribbon tails dangle.

    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    Candy Cane Candles

    candy cane rimmed candle
      This favorite Christmas treat is sweet to eat and to use as a decoration. Wrap the candle base with double-stick carpet tape and press candy canes onto the tape around the diameter of the candle.


      Natural Christmas


      For a woodland look hot glue nuts around a pillar candle and wrap with a piece of twine. Display the embellished candle in a tray with evergreens sprigs and kumquats


      Candles and Canning Jars

      Fast and Easy
      Turn canning jars into candle holders. Simply fill the jars partially with water, add a floating candle, and tie a ribbon around the lip of the jar

      Saturday, November 12, 2011

      12 Months of Organizing

      A complete overhaul of your home's storage system may sound overwhelming, but focusing on improving the storage in just one room each month can get you the storage
      you want in a quick but manageable time frame.

      Starting in January 2012 and every month following I will give you a guide to organizing your home one room at a time. Check back in January for the first installment.


        Holiday Coffee Sleeves

        Fashion a cute Christmas sock or small sweater into a reusable sleeve for coffee or hot cocoa to go. After washing, cut a 3-inch section from the top of your clothing. Embellish with buttons or felt snowflake cutouts for added winter charm. Slip the sleeve onto your to-go cup or tumbler, roll the ends to hide frays, and start sipping

        Holiday Specials

        Just a friendly reminder of a couple of post I made recently. "Roseann's Creations" is still offering her 10% discount on her beautiful handmade purses. Check the side bar for a link to her sites. With the holiday coming upon on us soon I am sure there is someone on your list that would love on of her designs.

        Also I posted recently about a young jewelry designer that has some beautiful designs in original handmade items. She also is offering a "free shipping " on all your purchases. So with the holidays approaching keep these two ladies in mind. Check the side bar for "Eighteen 25."

        Tree of Buttons

        • 12-inch foam cone
        • 250+ buttons in a variety of sizes and colors
        • 250+ pins with large heads
        • White crafts glue (optional)
        • Star or other ornament for the top of the tree

        How to Make It:

        1. Select a color scheme for the tree. Purchase new or antique buttons in the color scheme in a variety of sizes (small, medium, and large). Sort the buttons by size and color.
        2. Beginning with the largest buttons, insert a pin into a button hole and pin the button to the cone. Place the largest buttons randomly around the lower portion of the tree. (If desired, dip the pin shaft into glue before inserting into the cone.) Layer some contrasting smaller buttons onto the large buttons. As you are working, check your tree for balance of button color and size; adjust as necessary. Continue by placing medium buttons of contrasting colors adjacent to the large buttons.
        3. Fill in the gaps between the larger buttons with the smaller buttons. Add buttons until the foam cone is completely covered.
        4. Use small buttons at the top of the tree. Add a star or other ornament to the top of the tree

        Double Chocolate Biscotti

        Double Chocolate Chunk Biscotti
        • 1/3
          cup butter
        • 2/3
          cup sugar
        • 1/4
          cup unsweetened cocoa powder
        • 2
          teaspoons baking powder
        • 2
        • 1 3/4
          cups all-purpose flour
        • 4
          ounces white baking bar, coarsely chopped
        • 3
          ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
        • 2
          tablespoons shortening (optional)
        • 2
          ounces semisweet chocolate or white baking bar, coarsely chopped (optional)
        1. Grease a large cookie sheet; set aside. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, cocoa powder, and baking powder; beat until combined. Beat in eggs. Beat in as much flour as you can. Stir in any remaining flour. Stir in the 4 ounces white baking bar and the 3 ounces semisweet chocolate.

        2. Divide dough in half. Shape each half into a 9-inch-long roll. Place rolls 4 inches apart on prepared cookie sheet; flatten rolls slightly to 2 inches wide.

        3. Bake in a 375 degree F oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the centers comes out clean. Cool on cookie sheet on a wire rack for 1 hour. Using a serrated knife, cut each roll diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Lay slice, one cut side down, on an ungreased cookie sheet.

        4. Bake slices in a 325 degree F oven for 8 minutes. Turn slices over and bake 7 to 9 minutes more or until slices are dry and crisp. (Do not overbake.) Transfer to a wire rack; cool.

        5. If desired, in a heavy small saucepan combine the shortening and the 2 ounces semisweet chocolate or white baking bar. Cook and stir over low heat until melted and smooth. Drizzle over tops of biscotti. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight

        Apple Cranberry Dessert

        Easy Apple-Cranberry Dessert Squares
        2 1/2
        cups Original Bisquick® mix
        1 1/2
        cups quick-cooking oats
        cup packed brown sugar
        cup cold butter or margarine
        cup chopped pecans
        cups thinly sliced peeled apples (about 5 large)
        bag (6 oz) sweetened dried cranberries
        cup granulated sugar
        tablespoon ground cinnamon
        container (8 oz) sour cream
        gallon vanilla ice cream

        • 1 Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 15x10-inch pan with cooking spray.
        • 2 In large bowl, mix Bisquick mix, oats and brown sugar. Cut in butter, using pastry blender (or pulling 2 table knives through ingredients in opposite directions), until mixture is crumbly. Remove 1 1/2 cups crumb mixture to small bowl; stir in pecans. Set aside for topping. Pat remaining crumb mixture into bottom of pan.
        • 3 In large bowl, toss apples, cranberries, granulated sugar and cinnamon. In small bowl, whisk together sour cream and eggs. Pour over apple mixture; toss to coat. Spoon filling over crust; sprinkle reserved crumb/nut mixture over filling.
        • 4 Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until topping is golden brown and apples are tender. Cool 30 minutes. Cut into 8 rows by 4 rows. Serve warm with

        Santa Hat Placecard

        Santa Hat place cards
        • Tracing paper or a copier; pencil
        • Square of stiff red glitter felt
        • Scrap of white fluffy, furry fabric
        • Fabrics glue
        • Hand-sewing needle; red sewing thread
        • Straight pins; scissors
        • 20-mm gold jingle bell

         How to Make It:

        1. Trace a pattern using tracing paper or a copier. Place the pattern on the red glitter felt, and cut out one shape for each holder.
        2. Cut 1-1/2x8-inch piece of white fabric. Fold long edges under 1/4 inch, and glue the to the back side of the fabric to make a strip 1x8 inches.
        3. Glue white trim in place on the front lower curved edge of the red felt. Match straight edges of the red felt; form into a cone.
        4. Pin the straight edges together and stitch with a tight whipstitch using matching red thread.
        5. Sew a large jingle bell firmly to the top point, using matching red thread. Slide a place card through the top bell slit.

        Simple Twig Wreath

        Renew a wreath
          Give your front door a nature-inspired look for the holidays with this woodsy wreath. Decorate a basic twig wreath with berry branches, a burlap ribbon bow, live greens, and a faux animal feather for a natural Christmas wreath

        Star Accented Wreath

        Evergreen wreaths are pretty as a standalone holiday decorations, but a few similarly hued elements give yours a bit of unique flair. Attach silver pipe cleaners, a strand of inexpensive plastic beads, and some metal stars to the wreath with hot glue or florist's wire

        Holiday Birdbath Display

        A birdbath supplies a perfect and unique spot for a bit of seasonal merriment. Tuck evergreen boughs under and around a shiny ball and spray-paint pinecones to match. For the final flourish, secure matching berry sprigs and a premade bow with wire to the evergreens

        Serving Up Sophistication

        A pair of stacked cake plates dressed with evergreens, glass balls, pinecones, and red berries makes a sophisticated, no-fuss centerpiece

        Switch it Up

        Centerpieces usually run the length of the table. For something different, keep the centerpiece in the middle of the table, but stretch it across the width instead. Here, evergreen boughs drape across the table horizontally and are accented with pretty red flowers and white berry sprigs

        White Hyacinth Holiday Centerpiece

        This centerpiece filled with seasonal, natural elements is versatile enough for any holiday occasion. Simply fill a large, low bowl with boxwood, pinecones, and white hyacinth

        Amaryllis and Pineapple Centerpiece

        Let nature do the legwork in a beautiful centerpiece that's also a conversation starter. Simply hollow out a pineapple, set it in a tray filled with cranberries, and arrange classic Christmas amaryllis inside the makeshift vase

        Amaryllis and Cranberries Centerpiece

        A single amaryllis stem makes a dramatic statement as a centerpiece. Place the stem in a few inches of water in a tall cylindrical vase. Hide the stem with cranberries and finish with a red ribbon and a small pine branch cutting

        Friday, November 11, 2011

        Carmel Drizzled Pumpkin Poke Cake

        Caramel-Drizzled Pumpkin Poke Cake                               
        box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® yellow cake mix
        cup (from 15-oz can) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
        cup water
        cup vegetable oil
        teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
        can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
        jars (12 oz each) hot fudge topping
        container Betty Crocker® Whipped fluffy white frosting
        cup chopped pecans, toasted
        tablespoons caramel topping

        • 1 Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease or spray bottom only of 13x9-inch pan.
        • 2 In large bowl, beat cake mix, pumpkin, water, oil, eggs and pumpkin pie spice with electric mixer on low speed until moistened, then on medium speed 2 minutes. Pour into pan. Bake 26 to 33 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center.
        • 3 Immediately poke cake every inch with handle of wooden spoon halfway into cake. Drizzle condensed milk evenly over top of cake; let stand until milk has been absorbed into cake, about 5 minutes.
        • 4 Meanwhile, place hot fudge in medium microwavable bowl. Microwave uncovered on High 15 to 30 seconds or until smooth. Spoon and spread over cake, pressing slightly into holes. Run knife around sides of pan to loosen cake. Cover and refrigerate about 2 hours or until chilled.
        • 5 Spread frosting over top of cake. Sprinkle with pecans.
        • 6 Just before serving, drizzle caramel sauce over each serving of cake. Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator.

        Saturday, November 5, 2011

        Chicken Enchilada Casserole

        Chicken Enchilada Casserole

         1 boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into thin bite-size strips

        1/2 medium red bell pepper, finely chopped

        1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

        1 can (18.5 oz) Progresso® Light Southwestern-style vegetable soup

        1/4 cup uncooked instant brown rice

        1 oz fat-free cream cheese, cut into cubes

        3 tablespoons Old El Paso® fat-free refried beans (from 16-oz can)

        4 corn tortillas (6 inch)

        1/3 cup shredded reduced-fat mild Cheddar cheese

         1 Heat oven to 350°F. In 12-inch nonstick skillet, cook chicken and bell pepper over medium-high heat 4 to 6 minutes, stirring constantly, until chicken begins to brown and bell pepper is crisp-tender. Sprinkle with cumin.

        2 Stir in soup. Heat to boiling. Stir in rice; reduce heat to low. Cover; cook 10 minutes or until rice is tender.

        3 Stir cream cheese into chicken mixture until well blended. Spread 1 tablespoon of the refried beans on 1 tortilla; place, beans side up, in bottom of ungreased 1-quart casserole. Top with 1 cup chicken mixture; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the cheese. Repeat 2 times. Top with remaining tortilla; sprinkle with remaining cheese.

        4 Cover; bake 20 to 25 minutes or until mixture is hot and cheese is melted

        Chocolate Turlte Cake

        Chocolate Turtle Cake
        1 Box Super Moist devil's food cake mix

        1 1/3 cups water

        1/2 cup vegetable oil

        3 eggs

        1 bag (14 oz) caramels

        1/2 cup evaporated milk

        1 cup chopped pecans

        1 bag (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (1 cup)

        Ice cream or Whipped cream, if desired

        Caramel and chocolate topping, if desired

        Chopped pecans, if desired

         1 Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease or spray bottom of 13x9-inch pan.

        2 In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil and eggs with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour half of the batter into pan. Bake 22 minutes (25 minutes for dark or nonstick pan). Refrigerate remaining batter.

        3 Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, heat caramels and evaporated milk over medium heat, stirring frequently, until caramels are melted. Stir in pecans. Pour caramel mixture over warm cake in pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Spread with remaining batter. Bake 25 minutes (29 minutes for dark or nonstick pan) or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Run knife around sides of pan to loosen cake. Cool at least 30 minutes. Serve with ice cream, drizzle with topping and sprinkle with pecans. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

        Danish Apple Almond Cake

        1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

        1/2 cup granulated sugar

        3 eggs Danish Apple-Almond Cake

        1 teaspoon almond extract

        1 1/2 cups Original Bisquick® mix

        3 medium baking apples, peeled, cut into eighths

        1 teaspoon powdered sugar

        1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted if desired

         1 Heat oven to 325°F. Spray bottom of 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray.

        2 In large bowl, beat butter and granulated sugar with electric mixer on high speed 1 minute. Add eggs and almond extract; beat on medium speed about 10 seconds. Add Bisquick mix; beat on medium speed about 30 seconds or until combined.

        3 Spread batter in bottom of pan. Press apple pieces, cut sides down, into batter. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes or until apples are tender and cake is golden brown.

        4 Cool 30 minutes at room temperature. Remove side of pan. Sift or sprinkle powdered sugar over top of cake; sprinkle with almonds. Serve warm.

        Thursday, November 3, 2011

        Grapevine Wreath

        Grape vine wreath with greenery and flowers
        Two purchased grapevine wreaths have been wired together and tied with ribbon.Sheaves of wheat and sprigs of grape leaves make this an easy project with high style results.

              Pail of Leaves Centerpiece

              Leaves in a copper pail
              All it takes is a vintage pail and some leaves from Mother Nature to make this fall-worthy centerpiece. Place magnolia leaves into a bucket, using florist's foam to keep the arrangement in place. The arrangement works best if you place tall leaves in the back and shorter leaves in the front.

              Glass Container Centerpiece

              Glass containers on a copper tray
                Footed glass containers hold ribbons, beans, and nuts in this fall centerpiece. A copper tray adds sophistication to the display and makes the brown-hue decoration portable

              Tuesday, November 1, 2011

              William's Halloween 2011

               I am not quite sure what this is but "Boy this is Fun "
               "And why do I need my nose painted,Mom?
               I guess it was to get this look, cute Huh?
               What are you looking at never seen a kid dressed up as a dog?
              I think I have had enough. Dinner anyone?


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