Merry Christmas to All…

Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good Night!

To all the friends I have made in this virtual space, to all friends and family that see my little corner of the World Wide Web, I wish you a very Merry Christmas.

I apologize for my silence up to this point. Without internet in my home, I have to go elsewhere to post a blog. Eventually, when finances settle again (and the lawsuit is over!), I’ll be able to turn the internet back on. Until then, please bear with the occasional post instead of daily. There may also be more than one in a given day when I am out and have internet.

What have I been up to the last few days? It’s infinitely easier to look at pictures to see what I’ve done and when. So, let’s see…


Oh, yes. The first picture in the folder is my boys unwrapping peppermint candies for me. We used them for our hot chocolate jars. If you don’t remember, here’s a flashback to what we made.


We were going to make more of these but haven’t, as yet. We did have a great time smashing up the peppermint, though.


This was on Friday night and when we were done, we had quite a bit of peppermint powder at the bottom of the bowl. I separated it out to see what else I could find to do with it.



On Saturday, I had a bright idea! How about peppermint Madeleine’s? Oh, yes. And so delightfully yummy. I put a scant handful of peppermint dust into the mix but also dusted the pans with it before pouring in the batter to bake them.



Look at those yummy flakes of peppermint in there! I ended up using all of my peppermint dust but I still have the crushed peppermint pieces for my hot chocolate cans I wish to make.


I finally figured out the problem with the recipe from The Spiffy Cookie! At least, I think I did. Y’all will have to confirm it for me. Remember, the offer is still on the table for whoever solves the mystery! I might be willing to double it for someone to come up with a solution for me – after verifying that I am right. I really want the molasses cookies that spread and look so delightfully yummy.

The problem? I believe it is because I use Splenda White Sugar instead of “normal” white sugar. Just a thought. So, if y’all come with that being the cause and solve the dilemma of getting them to spread nicely for me, I’ll double my original offer to $20 gift certificate at any online store. Keep in mind, I own no “normal” sugar in my home. None. It has to work with Splenda White or Splenda Brown Sugar as it’s sweetener.


Jen made these cookies on Saturday, as well. They have mint chips in them. So, we’ve got red sprinkled Madeleine’s and Green Chip Cookies. Yeah, it’s Christmas.



My babies being silly with the balls on the Christmas tree.




This series of pictures was my son, Caiden, quilting that top I showed y’all quite some time ago. I wanted to do it myself but he saw it and asked if he could do it. He wanted to sew it. I showed him how to go down and back up and that’s what he was doing on Saturday morning while watching Christmas movies. We moved his single-unit touchscreen computer to in front of the fireplace so they could watch Christmas movies all day Saturday while I was playing in the kitchen.

I forgot to get a picture of what he has gotten finished already. The stitches are not even but the effort is there and I think it is beautiful. I need to get him his own piece of fabric, draw the lines and let him go to town on it. He does seem to enjoy it and it was a great activity for keeping him occupied for long periods of time.

Who would have thought Caiden would want to sew like Mommy so badly? I’m still flabbergasted.


These are a couple jar I found at the local thrift store on Friday. The next time we melt chocolate/candy for putting on pretzels or whatnot, I can use that chocolate melter. By doing that, the boys can join in the fun! As long as they don’t burn themselves, right? The one on the far left, I’m now using for my honey jar. It looks like a honey jar!


The following is what Jen’s mom gave my boys for Christmas. The only way I could think of to color the entire thing is to put it on the wall with thumbtacks. It was rolled up in tubes and so big! I just wish Caiden hadn’t gotten *back* into the mode of scribbling and only using one color. He was coloring so pretty, before.


I thumb tacked it to the wall downstairs. I figure it’d be easier to clean up the mess down there – when we finally get that wall on the right fixed, that is. Beautiful pictures and I could see them so terribly amazing if colored nicely. However, that would be just a little much to expect from boys. Right?

I skipped on getting the material to finish their Christmas quilts and did manage to get some toys and whatnot for under the tree. I’ll finish them in the next month or so. I really want them to have these when we go to that Forest Service Cabin again. They will be so warm!

Christmas came together quite nicely. I was surprised when we looked at the presents we have to wrap tonight. We’ll do that after they fall asleep. A little here and a little there and my boys are going to have an excellent Christmas. I can’t believe how well it came together – and yes, I still have the money I need for the mediation which is scheduled for the first week of January!

I’ll see y’all at some point tomorrow – after the Christmas hustle and bustle. I’m looking forward to it so much! I am excited to show the boys what “Santa” managed to bring them!

Oh, and I’ll be making my own special homemade lasagna. Maybe this year I’ll find a way to write up the recipe for y’all. It’s absolutely the best ever and I only make it at Christmas – it’s too expensive for any other time of the year.

Have a Merry Christmas, y’all. I wish everyone all the best and a great day with friends and family tomorrow.

P.S. – it’s been snowing since last night. We get a white Christmas! How about y’all?

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Categories: 1950s, American, Basics of Cooking, Canning, Contest, Dinner, Family, House/Yard Changes, Quilting, Religion, Socializing, Trips | 4 Comments

Another Treat for Christmas

I found a new website. It’s the Ball Canning and Preserving site. Their website is HERE and their Facebook page is HERE. They have a new product out and it looks absolutely awesome. It’s a jam and jelly making machine. It does the work for you. No more trying hard to make sure you’ve got everything in the pot correctly and cooking it for the “right” amount of time. Now that’s a product I want! Of course, that wouldn’t be in keeping with the Living the 1950s thing, would it? I might have to relent because, no matter how many times I try to make the jam or jelly, it doesn’t look right. The product is called The Jam Maker. Click the name to go to the page where they sell it. I’ve seen it cheaper elsewhere – not on that website. Just a thought.

However, while I was looking at all that, I found a recipe idea for Christmas gifts to friends and family. It was awesome. It’s Hot Chocolate in a Jar. I decided to make it with my boys this morning. We made one batch in a bowl and 4 jars of it to possibly give away.


The ingredients. We had to fudge a little. Our chocolate chips were white, not dark. The candy canes to smash were cherry flavored, not peppermint and out mini marshmallows were colorful, not white. All in all, a great idea and I want to make more to give away!


Smash them right good and proper!


We all took turns smashing them to tiny bits.


Mush, smash, crush. Keep going. Still too big.

When that was finally done, we started filling our jars.



(the blue hand is from playing with markers last night. no worries here)


All done. With our slight modifications, it doesn’t look too bad. Now we can give them away. I’m thinking we need to take some of this and some bread to Miss Lisa who brought us yummies the other day!


The mix that we tossed into the bowl while we were making our jars is now to be tested. I’m instructing children on how to stir it *carefully* while the water boils.


Put 1/3rd cup into a mug and add water. (Great picture, Jen!)


It has a stronger chocolate taste than the stuff you buy in a package but it was quite good. I want to make more and I can actually see myself “canning” quite a few of these and just pulling one out when the boys want hot chocolate. It’s quite simple to heat water. Can you imagine having a few of these on the shelves when we all lose power? Part of our storage for emergencies type thing? A nice warm cup of hot chocolate during a crisis of that sort would give some calm peace to your world, I’m sure.

Yeah. I need to make more. Definitely need to make more.


We also found another cute little gift that can be given away. I want to make more of them. I have realized that I need to quit throwing away the used lids for my canning jars, though. The used ones would be perfect for some of these ideas I’ve come up with!

This one is Homemade Air Freshner. Click the title to be taken to the link. Jen and I tried this one last night. I used what I had on hand.


Fill a Ball Jar halfway with Baking Soda.


Add some drops of fragrant oil. Stir it up vigorously to make sure the oil disperses through the Baking Soda.


The website I got this from says to use scrap-booking paper with holes cut into it. I’m a quilter so I used some fabric. It naturally breathes. Cut it to look cute on the outside. I tried. Every now and again, shake the jar (gently when using fabric) to stir up the fragrance.

Outstanding and so cute! I have to see if I have any more oil in the house so I can make this again! Of course, with used lids not brand new ones.

P.S., Jen? I just found this and this. Click on the word “this” to go to what I found and want to try next.

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Categories: 1950s, Basics of Cooking, Canning, Family | 1 Comment

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