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Saturday, November 30, 2019

Giveaway Alert ::: Children's books from Candlewick

Reading is a feature in life that is very important. It is a function that is needed but one that can be fun as well. One way to make it fun is to help our children start early. Books such as the ones featured on a giveaway at Heck of a Bunch offer a chance to have fun with your child or they can have fun reading them alone.

Enter to win a total of 6 books from Candlewick when you enter the giveaway at Heck of a Bunch 

Giveaway Alert --- Keep Your Produce Fresh

In my large family it seems that grocery shopping never ends. I continue to shop and they continue to eat. The one thing that I totally dislike is when we waste food. Produce is one of those easy to waste foods as we often place them in containers in the fridge and forget about them A new product on the shopping from is Lotus Produce bags. 

Lotus Produce Bags are made of nylon mesh and can be washed repeatedly.  The bags are double-stitched on the sides, and each one includes a drawstring that comes with a white lock to keep contents secure.  Although they are made of white mesh, you can still see through enough to get a glimpse of what is inside each bag.

You can currently enter to win a giveaway at the blog Heck of a Bunch. The winner will receive a set of Lotus Produce Bags (3 small, 3 medium, and 3 large).

Another Great Recipe For Leftover Turkey ---- Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

2 cans black beans
2 cans pinto beans
2 cans light red kidney beans
2 cans chili hot beans
2 cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth
1 Spanish onion diced
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
¼ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp approximately freshly ground pepper
3 TBSP Cajun spices
left over turkey

Skin and take the leftover turkey off the bones shredding into pieces.
Put the turkey into the crock pot.
Drain the juices out of the black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans.
Stir to mix the ingredients.
Pour the black beans, pinto and kidney beans in a crock pot.
Add the chili beans, roasted diced tomatoes and the broth to the crock pot.
Add the diced onion. Stir well.
Add the spices. Stir well.
Cook on medium for 4-6 hours.
Occasionally stir the ingredients to incorporate all of the spices and other ingredients.
Enjoy with sour cream, cheese, crackers or Fritos.

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Brighten someones day

Making the Holiday season may be harder to make jolly for some. You may be able to help out with this just a bit. Some things that you can do to help brighten someone's day are very easy. Some ideas would be to:

  • offer to help someone
  • invite someone who would other wise be lonely out for a meal
  • take a dish of food to someone who is lonely, grieving or simply having a hard time
  • allow someone to go in front of you in grocery or other line
  • send a simple "thinking of you" card to someone 
  • calling those that you love to simply say "I love you"
  • take time to say hi to your neighbor
  •  babysit for free a child in your life to let the parent(s) a night out
  • hold the door open for someone

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Peppermint Mousse

Candy Cane White Chocolate Mousse

9 oz white chocolate

1/4 cup milk

1 1/2 tsp peppermint extract

3 large eggs, separated

1.5 cups heavy cream in the US

To decorate: red/pink food coloring, extra whipped cream, crushed peppermint candy canes

Place white chocolate, milk and peppermint extract in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water. Heat until the chocolate is just melted, stirring regularly. Cool for 5 minutes, then beat in egg yolks one at a time until well combined. Whip cream to soft peaks in a separate bowl, and then gently fold into warm mixture until just combined. In a separate clean large mixing bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks. Gently fold in the rest of the mixture into the egg whites until just combined.
If making the pink and white layers, place half the mixture in a separate mixing bowl and fold in food coloring until just combined. Spoon alternating amounts of pink and white mousse into six 1/2-cup capacity serving glasses. Chill for 3-4 hours or overnight in the fridge. To serve, top with extra whipped cream and a sprinkle of crushed candy canes.

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Thursday, November 28, 2019

The First Thanksgiving

One fateful day over 100 Puritans boarded a ship called Plymouth. The destination was to be Holland, however they would never meet their destination Little did they know as they went aboard the ship in England that they were saying good - bye to their loved ones. Perhaps their journey they embarked on was not only as they thought a trip to a new land that would offer them freedom but one that they themselves would lead. 

The group believed they would land near a land known as India. When they saw that they were not alone they suggested that those they met be known as Indians. The natives of this new land would welcome the newcomers. Thus those fateful individuals that arrived in the new land would depend on those who they met to survive the new land, but as we all know the story is one that goes on past that.

George Washington would proclaim the first Thanksgiving as a national "Day of Thanks" in 1789. Each year on the fourth Thursday of November the day is set aside to celebrate the blessings bestowed upon us. Blessings such as family, friendship and all those that God has allowed us to have. 

Leftover Thanksgiving Dinner in a Casserole

So did you enjoy the chore of preparing Thanksgiving dinner for the guest you invited?? I myself do not consider cooking at holiday time to be a chore. We all get in there and work together to put a delicious meal on the table. However, the one thing that has never changed is that we make to much and have lots of leftovers. 

This is a recipe that will help use up those delicious leftovers and please your family with a new dish as well. 

3/4 to 1 lb leftover turkey meat (I prefer dark meat for this one)
Approximately 4 cups leftover dressing.
2 to 3 pieces sourdough or whole wheat bread, crumbled.
1 cup turkey stock, chicken stock or giblet gravy.
1/2 small onion, chopped.
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 tsp. dried sage.
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil or butter.
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350°F
Break turkey into bite sized pieces. Saute celery and onions in olive oil in a large oven proof skillet or stove top safe casserole over medium low heat until just translucent. Remove from heat.
Add remaining ingredients except stock and mix well. Drizzle stock over mixture evenly and press flat gently with back of a large spoon.
Place dish in oven and cook, covered, for 30 minutes or until steaming. Remove cover, increase oven to 425°F and cook an additional 8 to 10 minutes, or until top crumb is nicely browned and crisp.
Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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