Friday, December 21, 2012

Almost Christmas!!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Christmas season!
Our family is almost all ready. Emily wore her pj's to school today, they had Polar Express day.
And what a wonderful SNOWED!! What a fun way to start Christmas break! Emily had fun sledding as soon as she came home from school.
The elementary school put up a special tree, with ornaments honoring those who are fighting cancer or have passed away after fighting cancer. We had an ornament for my dad.

This was the last Christmas my dad came to visit us for Christmas, Dec. 2010.
Along with all the Christmas stuff, Emily has joined the Peewee basketball team. Her last words before her first game was.... "I hope they don't pass me the ball!" Oh my, she's getting more confidence. The idea of playing in front of people didn't go well with her! 

Have a great weekend before Christmas! This weekend will be full of baking fun & playing in the snow!!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Emily and I....A couple of Redneck Girls!

Emily & I have been learning how to ride my dads 4-wheeler (safely). Emily says I'm too slow driving it. Well....I guess that means I'm being careful!  I've never drove one of these before. My dad really enjoyed riding. He loved anything "outdoors". So, in some ways, riding is a comfort to me.

I have to admit...buzzing around the farm is really fun, and I kinda like getting some mud kicked up, too! :) 

Our reason for going to the hayfield was to take lunch & coffee to Al. He was busy mowing some hay. We are really behind on our hay, thanks to the drought earlier this summer.  But, with the recent rain, we should be able to get enough hay to get us through the winter.

We did a little goofing around with the camera while we waited for Al to make it around the hill. I remember when Emily was little and loved to smile pretty for the all I get from her is goofy faces...

Even Annie didn't want to look pretty for me...

Hope everyone has had a great week. My day off from the diner is tomorrow, so we're making a trip to our county fair! Emily is really hyped up about it, and hopefully she lets me get some nice pictures of her...without the silly faces! ;)

Friday, August 17, 2012

What I Love About Summer......


Congratulations to Bette O. She was chosen as the winner of the newest GBP cookbook, 101 Breakfast & Brunch Recipes!!

An email has been sent her way!

Big thanks to everyone who stopped by for a visit and left a comment.

Have a great weekend!! :)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A Little This & That...Summer 2012

Wow! What a crazy summer this has been. I'm really looking forward to fall and some cooler weather.

Big thanks to those who have entered to win the newest GBP cookbook!! I had so much fun trying out the recipes...and I'm looking forward to trying some more from this cookbook. So many amazing recipes! Tomorrow a winner will be picked! :)

I hope that everyone had a wonderful summer. It seems like it went by so quickly. Emily will be heading back to school on the 27th. I'm going to miss having her here at home...but she is excited to see her friends. I even think our school shopping is done. Which is great, and I'm actually early.

This summer has also been a difficult one. My dad, after battling cancer for 10 months, passed away on July 6. My comfort is that he is no longer in pain, it was getting very bad for him, and the dosage of morphine was so high, and not helping. His one wish was to pass away at home in his favorite recliner, and he was able to do that. He sat down, and fell asleep, and quietly passed. I miss him so very much.

I'm now in the process of sorting through his belongings. It's a challenge, since I live 2 1/2 hours away from his place. My favorite treasure that I found in his attic was old family photos, newspaper clippings (my grandpa was a champion corn husker back in the 1930's), and my dads baby book.

I've also started back working at our local diner again. I enjoy it. It's great work, enjoy those I work with, and, well, the extra paycheck doesn't hurt either! ;)

That pretty much sums up my summer, and I apologize for not updated my blog more often this summer. I'm planning a few things for this coming fall, and look forward to sharing with everyone!

Good Luck to those that left a comment on my cookbook giveaway post!! I can't wait to draw the winner! 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Mmm...Breakfast & Brunch Recipes

I am sharing a few recipes from GBP's newest cookbook....101 Breakfast & Brunch Recipes. Too many yummy ones to choose from!

French Toast Casserole
A perfect comfort food!

1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup butter
2 cup corn syrup
1 loaf French bread, sliced
5 eggs, beaten
1-1/2 cup milk
1 t. vanilla extract
Garnish: powdered sugar, maple syrup

Melt together brown sugar, butter and corn syrup in a saucepan over low heat; pour into a greased 13x9 baking pan. Arrange bread slices over mixture and set aside. Whisk together eggs, milk and vanilla; pour over bread, coating all slices. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Uncover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until lightly golden. Sprinkle with powdered sugar; serve with warm syrup. Makes 6-8 servings.

Sweet & Easy Iced Coffee

1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk, divided
4 cups stong brewed coffee, cooled
ice cubes

Place 2 tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk into each of 4 tall glasses. Pour one cup of cooled coffee into each glass; stir to combine. Fill glasses with ice; stir to chill. Serves 4.

Overnight Caramel Pecan Rolls

2  3.4-oz. pkgs. instant butterscotch pudding mix
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup chilled butter
36 frozen rolls, divided

Combine dry pudding mixes, brown sugar and pecans in a bowl. Cut in butter; set aside. Arrange half the frozen rolls in a lightly greased Bundt pan. Sprinkle half the pudding mixture over top. Repeat layering with remaining rolls and pudding mixture. Cover loosely; refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour. Invert onto a serving plate. Serves 10 to 12.

Breezy Brunch Skillet

6 slices bacon, diced
6 cups frozen diced potatoes
3/4 cup green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
6 eggs
1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp. Drain and set aside, reserving 2 Tbsp. drippings. In the same skillet, add potatoes, green peppers, onion, salt and pepper to drippings. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Cover and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are golden and tender. With a spoon, make 6 wells in potato mixture. Crack one egg into each well, taking care not to break the yolks. Cover and cook on low heat for 8-10 minutes, until eggs are completely set. Sprinkle  with cheese and bacon. Serves 4-6.

If you would like to add this cookbook full of wonderful breakfast recipes, just leave a comment on this blog post, make sure you leave an email address so I am able to contact you if you are chosen as the winner.

I'll be choosing a winner at 9:00 p.m. on August 17th!

Good Luck!!

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Christmas Table~ Recipe Review

It's May, Memorial Day weekend and we're hot here in Ohio! Is everyone ready for the big cookouts and the weekend welcome to summer??
I have some recipes, and even though the cookbook is Christmas, these will be extra yummy for your holiday weekend.

I'm doing a review for Gooseberry Patch, and the cookbook is called The Christmas Table. This is a really good cookbook! And everything is made with ingredients that I have on hand.

The first recipe I made is called Easiest Baked Mac & Cheese. All I can say is YUM! And so easy! I think this recipe is perfect for a cookout. In fact, I may end up making this and taking it to a get together next weekend.

Easiest Baked Mac & Cheese

2-1/4 c. water
2 c. elbow macaroni, uncooked
1/4 c. butter
16-oz. container sour cream
2 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

In a saucepan over high heat, bring water to a boil. In a greased 13"x9" baking pan, stir together uncooked macaroni, butter, sour cream and cheese. Pour boiling water over top; stir to combine. Bake, uncovered, at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Serves 4-6.

*I used Dreamfields penne pasta in place of the elbow macaroni. It was what I had. :)

Francie's Greek Salad

1 head iceberg lettuce, chopped
1 onion, diced
2 tomatoes, chopped
4-oz. pkg. crumbled feta cheese
1 c. pitted black olives

In a large serving bowl, combine all ingredients. Toss with Greek dressing just before serving.
Serves 8.

Greek Dressing

1/3 c. canola oil
1/3 c. olive oil
1/3 c. red wine vinegar
1 T. dried oregano
2 t. salt
1 t. pepper
1 t. garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in a tightly covered jar; shake well.

Cinnamon Roll Cake

18-1/2 oz. pkg. yellow cake mix
1 c. brown sugar, packed
1 T. cinnamon
2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. milk
1-1/2 t. vanilla extract

Prepare cake mixture according to package directions; spread half the batter in a greased 13"x9" baking pan. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over batter. Top with remaining batter. Run a table knife through the layers to create swirls. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. In a bowl, combine powdered sugar, milk and vanilla, adding more milk if needed to reach desired consistency. Spread over warm cake. Cut into squares and serve. Serves 10.

 How would you like to have a copy of this cookbook?? Leave a comment on this blog post and you will be entered! Please leave an email address so that I am able to contact you. :)  Giveaway starts now, and will end June 10, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. I'll announce a winner at 7:00 p.m.

Have a great holiday weekend!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Hearty Pork Chop Dinner

Hearty Pork Chop Dinner

4 pork chops
2 T. olive oil
1 sweet onion, sliced into rings
salt and pepper to taste
26-oz. jar spaghetti sauce
1/4 c. brown sugar, packed
16-oz. pkg. spiral pasta, cooked  (I used Penne, it was what I had on hand)

Brown pork chops in olive oil in a 12" skillet over medium heat; drain. Reduce heat to medium-low; spread onion rings on top. Season with salt and pepper. Whisk spaghetti sauce and brown sugar together; pour over pork chops. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes; serve over warm pasta. Serves 4.

Spring Has Sprung!

Spring is finally here! I love spring on the farm.
We've had so many flowers blooming and a lot of the birds have come back for the season.
We've had several baby calves born, and we're almost done calving.

We've even found time this spring to do some fishing at our pond. We have not been fishing since before Emily was born, and I almost forgot how much I enjoy it! Emily even caught her first fish, and would you believe, it was a 16 inch bass!! Now I know my first fish was not that impressive! She did good.

Emily has been helping me with the babies. She loves working with them and they seem to respond so well to her. We have six babies still on the bottle, and 4 babies have been weaned. Only one boy in the calf barn. Poor little guy surrounded by all those girls!

Hope everyone is enjoying their spring so far! It's been a beautiful one here!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Congratulations To Our Winners!

Big Congrats goes out to Sara Voges and Janice Ratski! They both won a copy the newest cookbook from Gooseberry Patch, Simple Shortcut Recipes! I had so much fun doing this review, and having a cookbook full of yummy recipes makes it that much better!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by our blog and shared their favorite thing about spring. Spring is my favorite season!

Stop by often, as the weather warms up, we'll be posting some yummy spring & summer recipes!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Recipe Review & Bonus Giveaway!

Recipe Review time!
I was asked by the folks at Gooseberry Patch to review their newest cookbook, Simple Shortcut Recipes!

Ranch & Bacon Pasta Salad

8-oz. pkg. rotini pasta, uncooked
1-1/2 c. mayonnaise
1 T. ranch salad dressing mix
1 T. bacon bits
3 green onions, chopped

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water. In a large bowl, mx remaining ingredients until well blended. Fold in pasta. Cover and chill before serving. Serves 4.

Yummy Quick Taco Soup

1 lb. ground beef
1 onion, diced
2 16-oz. cans black beans
2 16-oz. cans kidney beans
11-oz. can corn
10-oz. can diced tomatoes with green chilies
46-oz. can tomato juice
2 1-1/4 oz. pkgs. taco seasoning mix
Optional: sour cream, shredded Cheddar cheese, tortilla chips

Brown beef in a skillet over medium-high heat; drain. Add beef to a large slow cooker; add onion and undrained beans, corn and tomatoes. Pour in tomato juice; stir in seasoning mix. Cover and cook on low setting for 6-8 hours. Serve with sour cream, cheese and tortilla chips if desired. Serves 6-8.

Banana Cream Pie

2-3/4 c. cold milk
2 3.4 oz. instant vanilla pudding mix
2 T. banana extract
Optional: 5 drops yellow food coloring
8-oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed
9-inch graham cracker crust

In a bowl, whisk together milk, dry pudding mix, banana extract and food coloring, if using, for 3 minutes, or until softly set. Fold in whipped topping. Spoon into crust. Cover; freeze overnight. Thaw in refrigerator one hour before serving. Serves 6-8.

Now for the giveaway! I have not one but TWO Gooseberry Patch Simple Shortcut Recipes cookbooks to giveaway!
All you have to do is leave a comment here or on our blog Facebook page, and since spring is almost here, I'd like to know what your favorite thing about spring is! Make sure you leave an email address so I can let you know if you have won.
The giveaway will end Sunday, March 25 at 8:00 p.m. Winners will be announced at 9 p.m.! Good Luck!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Sausage Potato Soup

The other day I pulled out my Taste of Home Winning Recipes cookbook. It's one of those big binder cookbooks. My husband gave it to me for Christmas a few years ago. I love it. I ran across several soup recipes that I plan on making, and one that I did make.

Sausage Potato Soup

1/2 lb. smoked kielbasa or Polish sausage, diced
6 med. potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cups frozen corn
1-1/2 c. chicken broth
1 celery rib, sliced
1/4 c. sliced carrot
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1-1/2 c. milk
2/3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp. minced fresh parsley

In a large saucepan, brown sausage over medium heat; drain. Set sausage aside. In same pan, combine the potatoes, corn, broth, celery, carrot and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until vegetables  are tender.
Add the milk, cheese, parsley and sausage. Cook and stir over low heat until cheese is melted and soup is heated through. Serves 6.

I probably should have doubled the recipe when I made it. We had it gone in no time! I regret that I didn't get a picture taken, it did look yummy. My excuse?? Oh, this is a sad one...I didn't feel like walking up the stairs to get the camera! LOL  I wanted to eat!

Hope you enjoy this soup! By the sounds of the weather tomorrow, it just might be a good soup day!

Some January Ramblings...

I've been a little scarce lately. I think the holidays kept me busy! Hope that everyone had a nice Christmas & New Year's. We stayed home and enjoyed the day. Of course, chore time still happens on  farm, no matter what day. So, milking the cows came before opening gifts and eating. :-) It was so much easier to do this when Emily was a baby! She didn't know any better! lol

Al's mom and dad made it in for the weekend before Christmas. It was a nice visit with them. We finally had our camera handy and got a picture of them with our friend, Bud.

The Tuesday after Christmas, Emily & I went to visit my Dad. It was a nice visit, bittersweet. We don't know how long he has with us, but we feel this may have been his last Christmas with us. Emily enjoyed being with her Papaw. Can I add that I really hate cancer. In less than a year my Dad has changed so much. He's lost over 50 lbs. since this past summer.

We spent the night with my Mom. Emily was looking forward to this, since she was going to meet her cousin Megan for the first time. They are close to the same age, and you couldn't get them apart. They had a lot of fun!

We've had a few extra chores pop up unexpectedly on the farm end the past couple of weeks. We always try to expect the unexpected, since something most likely will break, get sick, or happen. It's usual, especially during winter. The barn was out of water, so we had some brought in. Thankful for the rain that came down in buckets yesterday through today. Guess we're supposed to have some snow tonight. Emily is hoping for a snow day. Our school hasn't had a snow day yet, and that is unusual in our area!

The cows seem really content in the warm, dry barn. They seem to look forward to winter. We've dried off several cows and in a couple of months we'll have babies being born. We dry them off for about 2 months, it gives them time to rest and get ready for their next lactation. Guess it's their "maternity leave".

Hope everyone has a wonderful 2012!
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