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Friday, November 18, 2011

Nutcracker at Kirklands

I would love to get this little nutcracker for my son. He is a nutcracker fan and I think he could use it in his dorm room as well. Find it and many other great items at Kirklands

Hartstrings Black Friday

I love shopping for my grandchildren and we all know that we are coming up on on of the biggest shopping days of the year, black friday. Hartstrings has some cute items available on their website for both boys and girls. Hartstrings has been providing children with classic American styles with a modern flare for many years. Available from their collections are dresses to cardigans, from rainboots to pajamas that are perfect for family photos, holiday gatherings, school functions or special family moments.
Let me share some of my favorite items with you

There is no better time to shop Hartstrings than black friday where they will be having awesome deals and have 20% off everything including sale items.

I wrote this as part of an entry to a contest to win holiday outfits for my children. Hartstrings and MomSelect offered this opportunity to write about the Thanksgiving Weekend Sale and possibility of winning clothes for my children

The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie

3/4 cup butter, softened 
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
(12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels

Beat butter and sugars at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, beating until blended. Combine flour, soda, and salt in a small bowl; gradually add to butter mixture, beating well. Stir in morsels. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto lightly greased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 8 to 14 minutes or until desired degree of doneness. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies: Decrease salt to 1/2 teaspoon. Add 1 cup creamy peanut butter with butter and sugars. Increase flour to 2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons. Proceed as directed. (Dough will look a little moist.)
Oatmeal-Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies: Reduce flour to 2 cups. Add 1 cup uncooked quick-cooking oats to dry ingredients and 1 cup raisins with morsels. Proceed as directed.
Pecan-Chocolate Chip Cookies: Add 1 1/2 cups chopped, toasted pecans with morsels. Proceed as directed.
Almond-Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies: Reduce morsels to 1 cup. Add 1/2 cup slivered toasted almonds and 1 cup almond toffee bits. Proceed as directed.
Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies: Substitute 1 (12-ounce) package dark chocolate morsels for semisweet chocolate morsels. Proceed as directed.
Chunky Cherry-Double Chip Cookies: Microwave 1 tablespoon water and 1/2 cup dried cherries in a glass bowl at HIGH 30 seconds, stirring once. Let stand 10 minutes. Substitute 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chunks for morsels. Add 1 cup white chocolate morsels, 1/3 cup slivered toasted almonds, and cherries with chocolate chunks. Proceed as directed.
Coconut-Macadamia Chunk Cookies: Substitute 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chunks for morsels. Add 1 cup white chocolate morsels, 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut, and 1/2 cup macadamia nuts with chocolate chunks. Proceed as directed.

Kings Hawaiian Roll coupon

One thing that will always be on our table for family gatherings is the King's Hawaiian Rolls These are delicious and everyone seems to agree This makes one thing easy to know what to have at our family dinner now if we could just agree on some other dishes as well. Want to save some money get $1 off King hawaiian products with this coupon here

Setting The Thanksgiving Table

Love this idea to set up the thanksgiving table. Using chalkboard placemats or plastic placemats that have been sprayed with chalkboard paint make the perfect place setting and name cards all in one.

Five Question Friday

1. Do you have a go to song that always puts you in a good mood?

There are many songs that can get me going I love music and often sing songs while working

  2. Are you a real Christmas tree kinda person or do you go with a real fake one?

we have had both from time to time this year we are having a fake tree the funny thing is my son in law works at a christmas tree farm

3. What are you thankful for?

for my family , my job, my friends, but most of all for my Heavenly Father and the freedom to worship him

4. Which fashion fad from the past do you wish you could wear today?

loved my parachute pants they were so very comfortable

5. Do you wait until the "low fuel" light comes on before you fill up the gas tank?

no this is a never with my husband while my mom and siblings do this quite often

Friday Fragments

Mommy's Idea

Wow today has all ready started off with a bang, attitudes are flying in this house like crazy. What is it about the time change that leaves us tired for a few weeks? I believe that is what it is because everyone including myself walks around here tired and grumpy. Perhaps thought it is our busy lifestyle. Right now there is work, school, outside activities and many of my teens have started dating as well. You know young love

Yesterday was not so bad though. It was a worthwhile day, spending time with my mom. We spent our day shopping and went out to eat lunch as well. Grocery shopping was wonderful as I got some real deals and saved a bit over $100 using coupons and store deals. AWESOME!!!! Eating out saved us money as well because one of our local restaurants has special deals on Thursday. I was not aware of this but will keep it in mind from now on.

The rumor is that the work schedule is out. I may just go over there and peek at it today. This schedule includes Thanksgiving and the day after. Because nursing facilities do not shut down for the weekend someone has to work holidays. I only want to know if I am working these days or not. While it does not matter so much as I know that I will still celebrate this year with my family whether it is at the regular time we eat or after. My family is growing many members are now working and family dinners will be harder to plan. This is our first one with all working though and we will have to practice making a plan for all to get together.

Well that is my week or at least part of it there is always excitement somewhere around here. What is going on with you?

Follow Friday Four Fill In Fun

Each week, the blog Feeling Beachie plans on  listing four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. If you want to join the fun and come up with four fill in’s of your own, please email them to me at . If I use them, I will add you as co-host to the hop! This week’s co-host is Jen from Just Another Day

1. I love the smell of ____ (rain, coffee in the morning, pumpkin and vanilla)
2. When I fly, I ____ (am normally dreaming as I have never been in a hospital)
3. I don’t like ___ but I ___. (scarey movies, I love sappy girl movies)
4. My favorite ___ is ___. (colors are blue and puple)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Decadence Gourmet Cheesecakes Review and Discount Code

Cheesecake is one item that is put on the table with every family gathering. Whether it is a potluck, holiday gathering and even wedding cheesecake is something that always is served. When I found out about Decadence Gourmet Cheesecakes the makers of the famous cheesecake in the jar I was delighted. Oh my now they were served in small serving sizes that one could sit down and enjoy by their selves or share with others if they chose too. The creamy goodness from Decadence is available in both sweet and savory flavors. They arrive frozen, well wrapped and the jars of cheesecake are sweetly set in a wooden box. I love to reuse whenever I can and the Decadence jar set allows the user to reuse. I plan to reuse my jars and box as a spice box and continue to use in the kitchen.

We were able to select six flavors from a variety of Decadence cheesecake 20 flavors. We chose from sweet and savory flavors including a southwest cactus flavor. I had never heard of a flavor of cactus before so it I had to totally try it I shared it with a good friend of mine during our break at work It was delicious. I was happy to share it with a good friend as I said there is ample enough 1/4 lb of cheesecake  in each jar to share with someone if one chooses to but then there are those times when a taste of cheesecake needs to be enjoyed by ones self. That is exactly what I did with the blackberry flavored cheesecake. Delicious as well!!!!

Decadence Gourmet Cheesecakes in a jar are made up of natural quality ingredients which include Philadelphia cream cheese, whole eggs, unsalted butter, pure cane sugar and real cream That makes me feel good to know that the main ingredients in the cheesecake mix are those that I am familiar with and ones that I would put in a cheesecake if I was making it at home. guaranteed to arrive fresh decadence cheesecake jars will arrive in a six pack jars. The jars are wrapped in re-usable composite gel packs or dry ice, wrapped in a thermal wrapper and packed in a thermal shipping cooler. The jars of goodness can be kept up to a week in the fridge or up to six months in the freezer. To my friends who live out of the U.S. sorry Decadence only delivers to the U.S. at this time.
Find Decadence on facebook

Buy Decadence Products from their website and if you use the code "annieshome" you will get 15% off your order.

Have Fun With Food Make Your Own Turkey

This cute idea was found here

Peppermint Coated Pretzels

(16-ounce) package pretzel nuggets (we tested with Snyder's of Hanover Sourdough Pretzel Nuggets)
2 (16-ounce) packages vanilla bark coating squares, coarsely chopped
2 cups (12-ounce package) white chocolate morsels
1 (4-ounce) package white chocolate baking bars, broken into pieces
1 (16-ounce) package hard peppermint candies, finely crushed and divided (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

Combine first 4 ingredients in a 4-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW 2 hours. Stir chocolate mixture; add 1 1/4 cups crushed peppermint candies and peppermint extract, stirring well to coat. Drop pretzel mixture by heaping tablespoons onto wax paper. Sprinkle remaining 3/4 cup crushed peppermint candies evenly on pieces before they set. Let stand until firm. Holiday Gift: These pretzels, with their festive candy coating, make great gifts around the holidays. Place the peppermints in a zip-top freezer bag, and crush with a rolling pin. Take your time when crushing the peppermints--you don't want large pieces or fine crumbs.

Sweet Potato Pie

Sweet potatoes -2 peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch cubes
Butter - 4 tablespoons, melted
Nutmeg - 1/2 teaspoon
Lemon juice - 1 tablespoon
Cinnamon - 1/2 teaspoon
Kosher salt - 1/2 teaspoon
Eggs - 3 separated
Sugar - 1/2 cup
All purpose flour 2 tablespoons
Buttermilk - 3/4 cup
Sweet piecrust shell baked -1

Preheat oven to 375°F. Pour water into a medium stockpot with a strainer basket and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add sweet potatoes, cover,and steam for about 20 minutes. Strain sweet potatoes, transfer to a large bowl, and let cool to room temperature. Mash them to a smooth puree with a potato masher. Add butter, lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt, and mix well. In a small bowl, beat egg yolks with a whisk for about 30 seconds. Add sugar and beat well. Add egg mixture to sweet-potato mixture and stir until eggs are thoroughly incorporated and filling is a consistent bright orange color. Add flour a little at a time, and then add buttermilk and stir to combine well. Take another bowl, whisk egg whites to soft peaks, about 1 1/2 minutes. Gently fold egg whites into sweet potato buttermilk mixture until thoroughly combined. Pour mixture into prepared piecrust and bake on middle rack of oven until the center is firm for about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove pie from the oven and cool completely. Your thanksgiving sweet potato pie is ready to serve for kids and adults.

Thanksgiving Dinner Recipe : Vegetable Casserole

1/3 cup of unsalted butter
1/2 cup of chopped onion
1 can of condensed cream of chicken soup
2 cups of sour cream
1 teaspoon of salt
4 turns of the pepper grinder
2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
2 pound bag of frozen southern style diced or shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted
1/2 sleeve of Ritz crackers, crushed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter or spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish; set aside.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat, and saute the onion just until soft, but not browned. Stir in the soup, sour cream, salt, and pepper until well mixed. Stir in the cheese until blended in well. Add the shredded potatoes and mix. Taste and adjust seasoning. Turn out into prepared baking dish. Mix the 3 tablespoons of melted butter with the cracker crumbs and sprinkle evenly over the top of the casserole. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.

recipe source: Deep South Dish

shared at thanksgiving recipe and craft link up

Autumn Snack Mix

2   (1-oz.) envelopes Ranch dressing mix
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
3 cups crisp oatmeal cereal squares
3 cups corn-and-rice cereal
3 cups crisp wheat cereal squares
2 cups pretzel sticks
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup candy-coated chocolate pieces 

Whisk together Ranch dressing mix and 1/2 cup vegetable oil in a large microwave-safe glass bowl. Stir in oatmeal cereal squares and next 3 ingredients. Microwave mixture at HIGH 2 minutes, and stir well. Microwave at HIGH 2 more minutes, and stir well. Spread mixture in a single layer on wax paper, and let cool 30 minutes. Add cherries and candy pieces. Store in an airtight container up to 5 days.

Speedy Breakfast Casserole

4-6 hash brown patties or about 2-1/2 cups frozen shredded hash browns, thawed1 cup of shredded chedda
1 cup of cooked crumbled Jimmy Dean sausage or cooked, diced ham
1 tablespoon of finely diced yellow onion
2 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
1-1/2 cups of milk
4 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning  or to taste, optional
2 pinches of kosher salt
8 turns of the pepper grinder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9 x 9 inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. If using raw sausage and bacon, cook both until browned. Chop up the bacon and set aside. Layer the baking dish starting with the hash browns/patties. On top of that add the shredded cheese, then the sausage, onion, and bacon. Beat together the milk, eggs, Cajun seasoning, salt and pepper and slowly pour over the entire dish.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes to one hour, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to set about 5 minutes before slicing. Can double for a 9 x 13 inch casserole.

recipe source : Deep South Dish

Ragu Sloppy Joes

2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 med. Onion, chopped (optional)
1 jar (1 lb. 8 oz.) Ragú® Old World Style® Pasta Sauce
8 hamburger buns

Brown ground beef with onion in 12-in. nonstick skillet; drain.

Stir in pasta sauce. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to med. And simmer covered, stirring occasionally, 10 min. Serve on buns.

Feeling cheesy? Stir in some shredded cheddar just before serving.
This recipe serves 8; double it if you're expecting a house full.

Another great item to have on hand is an assorted stash of Lipton® tea. A nice warm cup of holiday flavor, like Orange & Spice, Peppermint, Cinnamon Apple, Ginger Twist or Spiced Chai is a great accompaniment to winter afternoons spent catching up with your loved ones.

Cranberry Almond Bark




1 tablespoon Land O Lakes® Butter
1/2 cup slivered almonds
2 tablespoons sugar


16 ounces vanilla-flavored candy coating (almond bark)
1/2 cup orange-flavored dried cranberries*
1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest

Line 2 baking sheets with waxed paper; set aside.
Melt butter in 10-inch skillet over medium heat until sizzling; add almonds and sugar. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until sugar melts and almonds are golden brown (4 to 6 minutes). Quickly spread onto 1 prepared baking sheet. Cool completely; coarsely chop.
Melt candy coating in large microwave-safe bowl according to package directions. Stir in chopped candied almonds, cranberries and orange zest. Immediately pour onto remaining prepared baking sheet; spread to 1/4-inch thickness.
Refrigerate until firm (about 30 minutes). Cut or break into small pieces. Store in container with tight-fitting lid.

recipe source : Land O Lakes

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Potato and Broccoli Soup

2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 3/4 pounds broccoli, thick stems peeled and diced (about 2 cups), tops cut into small florets (about 1 quart)
1 1/2 pounds boiling potatoes (about 5), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
3 cups water
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Potato-and-Broccoli Soup Recipe at
In a large pot, melt the butter over moderately low heat. Add the onion; Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add the garlic, broccoli stems, potatoes, broth, water, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are almost tender, about 10 minutes.
In a food processor or blender, pulse the soup to a coarse puree. Return the soup to the pot and bring to a simmer. Add the broccoli florets and simmer until they are tender, about 5 minutes. Stir 1/4 cup of the grated Parmesan into the soup, and serve the soup topped with the remaining cheese.
recipe sourc here

Way Back When 1999

I will always remember watching this story unfold on T.V. The fatal decisions of two young men that changed so many lives began before the episode that played out on t.v. Find out how we can help prevent this from happening from the site dedicated to Racheal Scott.

  1. Where would you take the blogger group for a chat, if they came to your house?
  2. How do you handle "toxic people"? They're the ones that are very difficult to be around and generally don't bring out the best in us.
  3. In high school, were you the athlete, the cheerleader (actual or just your personality), the geek, the social butterfly, or lost?
  4. What's your favorite thing made from apples?
  5. Do you do most of your shopping in stores or online?
1. I would love for you all to come for a visit on a beautiful fall day where I would take you all to the Garden of the Gods where it is so beautiful with all the colors of the leaves

2. I just continue to try to show them love and leave them alone when that does not work

3. I was the cheerleader of sorts but I did not use pompoms I was the manager of many different sports and often found myself making spending time with friends

4. homemade applesauce

5. lately been doing more online, groceries are the only thing I buy at the store anymore

Orange Berry Salad

I love Cranberry Relish however many of my member do not like it so much. I am glad that I found this recipe because I think it fits perfectly with my Thanksgiving Menu

  • 1 cup, divided prepared, Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange peel
  • ½ cup heavy cream, whipped
  • 1 can (11 ounces) Mandarin orange segments
  • 6 ounces strawberry- or raspberry-flavored gelatin
  • 1 can (16 ounces) whole-berry cranberry sauce
  • ½ cup walnut pieces
  • Mint sprigs
  • Whole fresh strawberries and raspberries

  • In large bowl, whisk together salad dressing, orange juice and peel. Fold in whipped cream; cover and refrigerate.

    Drain oranges, reserving juice. Add water to juice to measure 3 cups; pour into large saucepan and bring to boil. Stir in gelatin until dissolved. Cover and refrigerate until partially set.

    Fold orange segments, cranberry sauce and walnuts into gelatin. Pour into lightly oiled 6-cup ring mold. Cover and refrigerate until firm; unmold. Garnish with mint and fresh strawberries and raspberries. Serve with remaining chilled dressing.

    Somewhat Simple

    Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Ginger Cookies

    2/3 cup canola oil
    1 1/2 cups sugar, divided 
    1 large egg
    4 tablespoons molasses
    2 cups sifted whole-wheat pastry flour
    2 teaspoons baking soda
    1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon sea salt

    Ginger Crinkle Cookies Recipe at
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    Mix oil and 1 cup sugar in a large bowl until combined. Beat in egg until combined. Stir in molasses until evenly incorporated. Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt over the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.
    Put the remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a small bowl. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls and roll each ball in the sugar before placing 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Do not flatten.
    Bake the cookies until set, but still soft when gently touched, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
    recipe source here

    shared on happy tea party tuesday

    Monday, November 14, 2011

    TP Roll & Hand Turkey

    This cute little craft is one that will not only be perfect for your holiday decor but will also make your little ones very happy. I love crafts like this because they allow me to capture a piece of time when their hands were so small.

    TP roll
    Construction paper in fall colors
    2 googly eyes, or black marker

    Cut two slits into your TP roll to make a triangle, and fold up to make your Turkey's bill (as shown in the picture) Trace your hand print onto the construction paper and cut out. From your construction paper (preferrably red color) cut out a "J" shape for under your turkey's neck. Glue onto the TP roll just under his beek. Glue the hand prints around the base of your TP roll. To finish it off, glue on googly eyes, or draw on eyes with a black marker. You've just created an adorable Thanksgiving turkey

    craft source here

    Blog Hop Week of November 8 - 14

      I love blogging and making lots of great friends If you stop by here please leave me a comment letting me know you were here.

    hopping around again today visiting lots of different blogs maybe I will stop by yours today. If you would like me to come over for a visit please leave me a comment and I will make it a point to do just that. If you happen to hop by here please leave me a comment letting me know
    Give a Hoot Wednesday Blog Hop

    Give a Hoot come by and give a salute. I love getting comments and try to give as many to other bloggers.

    The Not-So-Secret Confessions of a First Time Mom

    want to meet some other moms? The mom blog hop is a great place to do just that. By the way I am a mom of 6 and grandma to two

    Sears Tool Giveaway

    One gift I can always remember buying for my dad at Christmas time was tools. He loved them and so does my husband. Right now there is a giveaway over at MomStart where you can win the tool lover in your life a great tool set. Perhaps that tool lover is you. Either way be sure to enter before Novemer 14, 2011

    Autumn Splendor I Heart Faces

    Our Weekend

    This little girl shared her testamony at church last night. She faces many problems many teens do with her parents divorcing, pressures at school and just being a teen girl. She did a wonderful job and I am very proud of her

    THis is Brady Weldon a wonderful speaker in my opinion. If he is ever in your town you should go hear him speak

    What we are eating this week

    Menu Plan Monday

    We have changed to a hearty eating meal plan here at our house. The only thing is that schedules do not match in this house with two of my children having jobs and me working part time out of the house as well. Supper is our main meal time when we all get together

    one of my teens favorite foods tacos but this time in the form of a salad. Mexican is always a big hit at our house

    another family favorite is salisbury steaks This is a recipe that is fixed more in the cooler months because I consider it to be a bit heavy

    Inside Out Bacon Cheeseburgers this is a new recipe we are trying but have a great clue that they will be a hit

    Easy Veggie Soup is another new recipe. I so have been craving the same sort of soup that we had when I was a kid.

    Fried Chicken and mashed potatoes not for sure what day this will be served on but  I know will be a family pleaser

    An old favorite barbq chicken sandwiches

    an old easy favorite Tuna Mac  will be served on a busy night this weel.

    BLT Salad

    1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus more for drizzling
    4 small 1- to 1 1/2-inch-thick strip steaks, at room temperature
    Salt and pepper
    8 slices bacon
    4 leeks, white and light green parts only, sliced 1/4 inch thick
    1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
    3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
    2 hearts romaine lettuce, coarsely chopped
    2 beefsteak tomatoes, thickly sliced

    Preheat a grill or grill pan to medium-high. Drizzle EVOO over the steaks and season with salt and pepper. Grill the steaks, turning twice, 12 to 15 minutes for medium-rare. Let rest for 5 minutes.  In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels and let cool. Pour off all but about 1 tablespoon of bacon drippings from the skillet, then add the leeks, cover and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until wilted, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper; set aside.   Crumble the bacon and transfer half to a food processor. Add the Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, mustard, some pepper and a splash of water. With the machine on, pour in the 1/2 cup EVOO in a steady stream.   Arrange a bed of the romaine and tomatoes on each of 4 plates. Slice the steak against the grain and layer over the tomatoes. Scatter the leeks over the steak and pour the bacon dressing on the salad. Top with the remaining crumbled bacon.

    recipe resource rachael ray mag

    BecolorfulMiz Helen’s Country Cottage