A little bit of this and a little bit of that. Daily Ramblings, recipes, photos and whatever else I like to share along the way.

Fresh Bread I made Today…


Alrighty, you all know how much I like adore bread.

Anywho, I stumbled across some posts about a bread book and it of course they caught my eye.

I thought about buying it right off the bat but well, what if I did not like it?!

So, I off I went online to our local library and did a quick search to see if they had it and they did.

Gotta love the library!

I made the dough last night, let it sit overnight and shaped it this morning.

OMG!


Nice and crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Seriously, lunch was a slice hunk of this yummy bread.

The boys were thrilled with it and dh has requested that more be made later in the week and that I make it when we visit family for Christmas.

It is that easy and the end results are well, mouthwatering.

I highly recommend the book: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Jertzberg and Zoe Francois.

You know what is on my holiday list now *wink*!

Fresh Eucalyptus Leaves…


We have two Eucalyptus trees in the yard that we planted a few years back. One is doing very well and the other is er, hanging on.

On Friday, we were raking – again when we decided to prune back some bushes and rip up some vines growing in the yard.

Dh decided to pull off the lower branches of the tree (we do this every year) and I quickly brought them inside to dry out.

>inhales deeply<

I love the smell of fresh Eucalyptus and Nate is enjoying some in his room with his stuffy cold.


Method to the Madness....



This is so my son’s room *cough*Nate*cough*.

It drives me absolutely crazy but I have learned to pick my issues carefully.

Love the kid, really I do.


YoGiOh, Oh No…


I was up way too early for a Saturday because Autumn (our other pup) needed wanted to go outside.

Well, I’m one who once I’m up, I’m up.

I shuffled off to the laundry room to toss some clothing in to dry and fold some pants.

Pants.. right…

I grabbed a pair of Nate’s pants to fold and noticed this huge bulge in a side pocket.

Humm…

Tissues? Paper?

What in the world could it be?

Oh No!!!

The remains above were all of his YoGiOh cards, majority of them stuck together as a blob.

Gulp.

The horror.

I knew something was a brewing because he has been leaving pencils and those wonderful liquid gel pens in his pants that just explode all over the laundry when they are washed.
>shakes head<

I feel simply awful but he does know the rule that he is responsible for taking items out of his pockets.

I frantically pulled apart those cards that could be saved but honestly they are ruined.

No mom laundry award for me this month.

*crud*


New Day Soap Company - Review

A few weeks ago I purchased some soap from New Day Soap Company on Etsy.

With the way things had been going I needed a teeny tiny pick me up and the Wild Blueberry soap was calling my name.

My soaps were shipped quickly and packaged very nicely.

I bought the Wild Blueberry, Wasabi and received a sample of Badedas.

The wasabi is a super salt bar (lots of bubbles), topped with a little salt and the fragrance is defiantly fresh.

The blueberry soap I am saving until the dead of winter to refresh my senses and remind me of the summer. This bar smells so good, just like real blueberries.

Shh… I have found a new fragrance that I really like and that would be the Badedas.

It is one fragrance that I would never have thought of trying but I’m really glad that I received my sample. >grin<

I have a few other soaps on my list from this company so I know I will be back!

Why not give New Day Soap Company a try if you are looking for some new soap.

Sweet Potato & Rum Bake - Recipe

This recipe makes the best sweet potatoes you will ever have, seriously.

Mmm.. sweet potatoes.

You never taste the rum and it just makes the sweetness in the potatoes burst!

This is the only way I will eat mashed sweet potatoes, no marshmallows for me. (That’s just wrong. IMHO)

I know it is a bit late to make them for your Thanksgiving dinner but now you can plan to give them a try for the next round of holidays, a party or even just to try the recipe.

BTW- This is easy enough to make that you can reduce it down so that it just serves one.


* Exported from MasterCook *

Sweet Potatoes with Rum

Recipe By: MIL
Serving Size: 12 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories: Side Dish

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
4 large sweet potatoes
2/3 cup rum * not dark rum
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup corn flakes
1/2 cup walnuts -- chopped
2 tablespoons butter -- melted

  • Spray a casserole dish
  • Peel, cut and cube the sweet potatoes. Place in pot, cook, and drain.
  • Place cooked potatoes into a large mixing bowl and add the rum, butter and brown sugar. Beat until smooth.
  • You can add a bit of milk or a smidge of extra butter if you would like.
  • Place whipped potatoes into a casserole dish.
  • Place the corn flakes in a Ziploc and roll with a rolling pin.
  • Then mix in walnuts and butter. Make sure all are coated well.
  • Place over top of the sweet potatoes.
  • Bake until crispy on top.

Yield:
"12 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving: 199 Calories; 9g Fat (45.0% calories from fat); 2g Protein; 22g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 16mg Cholesterol; 93mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 1 1/2 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

NOTES:

You can add more/less rum to suit your taste.


Happy Thanksgiving....


Wishing you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving.





Drought - Lake Hartwell



I know that I have mentioned about how bad the drought has become for us in our portion of SC.

You can read about it here, here and here.

Now, today I had to go to another city to get some sewing needles (a whole other story) which meant we would be going over Lake Hartwell.

When we arrived to a portion of the lake we were totally blown away.

We were told that the lake has about 300 days of water left, so we knew it would be low but not this low.

A bridge in the distance that should have H2O under it.


After our errands were done we opted to stop and walk around snapping pictures.

There were some people out fishing in what little water was left and that just looked odd.

I think the pictures speak for themselves.

I was totally amazed by the amount of trash that we saw and I sure hope that it will be cleaned up while the levels are so low.

My hope that we can have some assemblance of rain soon but the prediction

is to have a warmer and dry winter.

It really does not look good.

There is a rope still attached to the boat even though there is no water.


The boys by a sign that states Shoal - look at where they are and where the water should be!


This buoy should be floating.



**Check out my badge on the side for some more pitcutres.


Cheap Gas Prices....

*rubs eyes*

Can you believe it?!

Gas at $1.61!!

The gas prices around here are such a treat for the wallet but I know it will not last long.



Italian Crescent Casserole - Recipe

I was short on time for whipping something up for dinner and I wanted something yummy to eat.

I had some ground beef out so I thought it would be best to find a recipe to use it up.

Then it was off to find out my recipe notebooks and see if I could find something, anything for dinner.

Ahh… I stumbled across this recipe that I found on Recipezaar way back in January. >oops!<

I double checked the ingredients and we had everything in the house. (miracle)

The whole meal whipped together in no time.

This is one meal that was a huge hit with everyone.

The casserole has a fantastic flavor and really doe not take long to bake.

Spence gave it a thumbs up and Nate went back for seconds.

He rarely ever has seconds!

This is defiantly one that we will be eating again.



* Exported from MasterCook *

Italian Crescent Casserole



Serving Size: 6
Categories: Main Meal

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 pound ground beef, 95% lean
1/2 cup onion -- chopped
1 cup marinara sauce
1/2 cup sour cream, light
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, part skim milk -- shredded
8 ounces crescent rolls
2 Tbl butter -- melted
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese

  • Brown ground beef and onion, drain.
  • Stir in marinara sauce.
  • IN a medium sized bowl, combine the sour cream and mozzarella cheese.
  • Pour ground beef mixture into a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish. Spoon cheese mixture over beef mixture.
  • Unroll crescent roll doung on top of cheese mixture.
  • In a small bowl combine melted butter and parmesan cheese.
  • Spread butter mixture over dough.
  • Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes, until the dough is golden brown.

Source:
"Recipezaar"
Yield:
"6 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving: 767 Calories; 49g Fat (71.3% calories from fat); 23g Protein; 22g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 128mg Cholesterol; 1070mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 8 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas: Great with a tossed salad.

NOTES:

  • To save calories you can sub in the light crescent rolls.
  • You can omit the onions if you would like or use some onion powder.
  • I used a bit of salt & pepper along with a tiny pinch of Italian seasonings in the meat.

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving - Tonight...


ABC – 8pm

What a wonderful holiday classic for everyone.

I know the boys and I will be watching tonight.

This will be replayed on Thanksgiving at 8pm, if you miss it tonight (the horror) or if you would like to watch it again (sounds like a plan).

The video clip above is part from the special that always makes me laugh.


Smart or Stoopid Test...

I have not given you a quiz in a few months so why not today?

Yup, that is my score above and it's not too bad.

Go, take the quiz and let me know how you do.

Smart or Stoopid


Cooking with Apples an e-book Cookbook Review

I must apologize to the author for taking so long in getting this review up.

I am so very sorry.

Time just has not been on my side lately and then I ran out of apples.

Seriously, who runs out of apples in the fall?!

Right let’s get to the good stuff!

Cooking with Apples by Lousia McCree

I love apples, they rank up in the top three on my list of favorite fruits.

This is one great e-book that I feel you will get plenty of use out of and will keep going back for new ideas. You will be treated with 94 wonderful recipes to try. There are recipes for drinks, entrees, lunch ideas, side dishes and yes, mouthwatering baking recipes. These recipes are well put together, easy to follow and do not require any fancy ingredients. I have had a great time creating these recipes and have yet to be disappointed.

There is a wonderful page on what type of apples are good for baking, eating, and simply eating. I always forget and have ended up with some interesting outcomes. *blush* Trust me this quite a handy little chart to have. There is nothing worse then putting all your ingredients together, looking forward to a yummy treat and then finding out that your apples have turned to mush.

This is my result from making the Apple Berry Crumble recipe.

I used raspberries, peaches and apples to create this wonderful dessert.

Dh was absolutely head over heals for this and has been pestering me to make it again.

It is not overly sweet and is just bursting with all the wonderful fruit flavors.

Oh! It is totally fab with our without whipped cream. *cough* I say go for the whipped cream. *cough*

You can mix up the types of fruits that you want to use and each time you will have a new treat to enjoy!

I also tried the Apple Crumble Cake recipe.

Mmmm… the bottom of this cake reminded me of shortbread with wonderful apples on top.
The item that took the most time for this recipe was cutting the apples.

Let your fingers walk on over to the website for Cooking with Apples.
This would make a fantastic gift for yourself, or anyone you know who enjoys cooking/baking. This will not break the budget and just think of all those mouth watering recipes just waiting to be whipped up.
This e book is only $9.97 and it comes 90 day money back guarantee.
Not that I think you will need nor use that guarantee.
I know that I am really enjoying my book and those who receive this will really thank you!



Psst... what are you still doing here?!

Doritos Casserole - Recipe


Quick, easy and very tasty!

This is always a hit with the family and I’m going to say it will become a fast favorite in your house.



* Exported from MasterCook *

Doritos Casserole


Serving Size: 6
Categories: Main Meal

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
6 ounces Velveeta Light -- cubed
2 tablespoons taco seasoning mix
1 can Cream of Chicken 98% Fat Free Condensed Soup
5 ounces Doritos Baked Nacho Flavored
12 ounces ground beef, 95% lean
11 ounces Rotel Tomatoes

  1. Cook meat, add taco seasoning and 1/4 cup of water.
  2. Mix tomatoes and soup together.
  3. Layer meat, soup mix and crushed chips and cubed cheese.
  4. Bake 350 for 30 minutes.

Yield:
"6 "
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 253 Calories; 7g Fat (42.3% calories from fat); 14g Protein; 6g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 33mg Cholesterol; 845mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Lean Meat; 1/2 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

Serving Ideas: A tossed salad on the side.



Baking Time...

My favorite flour has been on sale lately.

Can you tell?!

Bring on the holiday baking!


I earned a Gold Star.....


>grin<

I really did not do much to earn it early this morning.

You see I was standing in the check out line with some groceries and the Sunday paper.

I had my coupon book (you can see it down there) with me; you never know when you can use a coupon.

The cashier removed it from the cart; I apparently was still a bit groggy because I forgot to remove it as I pushed the cart forward. I never leave it out of my site while shopping because I have learned my lesson the hard way. I can’t tell you how many small recipe boxes of coupons I lost over the years with my forgetfulness. *rolls eyes*

As the cashier passed my notebook of coupons back over to me she noticed all the dividers. I was asked nicely if I could show her how I have the inside all set up, not a problem.

I opened it up and showed it to her.

(This is where I earned my gold star.)

The gentleman behind me noticed my coupon holder and nodded his head in approval.

Then he looked at me and said, “You earn a gold star this morning for being organized.”

Aww… shucks.

I was a bit embarrassed when I thanked him but I have to say that he really made my day.

I haven’t had a gold star in years and it feels really good.


Fiber Optic Desk Christmas Tree....


How cute!

Simply plug this little gem into your USB port and add a little extra cheer to your desk.

Or…

Add in some AAA batteries and place it anywhere you would like.

You can pick up a USB Fiber Optic Christmas Tree here.

Oh!

If you want to add a tiny bit of snow, check out the instant snow!

Enjoy your mini instant wonderland.


I'm smelling roses....

Red roses to be exact and I’m thrilled!!

Nah, dh did not bring me any roses though they would be quite nice.

Penn State is off to the Rose Bowl (read here).

Sweet!

Way to go!!

Now let’s kick some butt in the Rose Bowl!!!


If you want some red roses, ProFlowers has a wonderful selection.


Dr. Pepper Freebie....

This Sunday starting at 12:01 am you can go and download a coupon for a free 20 oz Dr. Pepper soda. The coupon will be good until February 28, 2009.

Why?

Dr. Pepper announced in March that it would give everyone in America a free Dr. Pepper if the Guns N’ Roses album Chinese Democracy were released in 2008.

Can you believe that this album was started way back in 1994?

Click here for the article.

Now, remember this Sunday is the magical day for that coupon!


Why is it?

This is my question of the day.

Why is it that when you fill up your gas tank in the AM 1 ½ hours later the price is down .07 cents?!

I have watched our gas prices take a tumble over the past few weeks which is such a relief from when we were battling with little to no gas in the area just a month ago.

Really, there are no complaints in this household.

But…

I needed some gas I could have waited, apparently should have waited but nah, I went and filled up this morning.

I mean it was $1.77 (great price) but when I zipped past the station 1 ½ hours later the price was down to $1.70.

*sigh*

Sure it is only .07 cents but those .07 cents do add up.

That extra savings could go for a new tube of lip gloss, a candle, and soap supplies; there are quite a few things I could think of off the top of my head.

KWIM?!

Ah well.





I survived shopping...

Today we had to go out shopping for some dress clothes for Nate; he has a big banquet tomorrow night.

We (including dh) headed out to a local department store and began our search.

I was hoping that it would be painless because sometimes it can be quite painful.

The first thing we needed to decide was if he would wear just a sweater or a sport coat.

Decision = sport coat

Dh said he had a jacket that would fit him. Super!

Next up find a nice white button down shirt.

We searched high and low and discovered one a bit buried on the shelf.

Shirt = done

Now what color tie?!

(inside I was gasping… a tie!)

Nate liked red, I found a really cool red/blue plaid and K found a nice orange one.

After holding many up to a sport jacket like the one we had at home it was the orange tie that won.

Meanwhile, Spencer was bubbling around the Men’s Dept. finding sweaters and various shirts for his big brother. Then he discovered some winter hats that he had to try on and a pair of gloves that he really wanted. I was all for buying the gloves the problem was that they were too big. He was disappointed that we would not be getting them but was back to giving us a big chuckle shopping.

Last but not least a new pair of pants.

That was really the easiest find out of everything.

Next up – off to the shoe store for some dress shoes.

We left with three pairs of various shoes.

He found a great pair of leather shoes on clearance for $30, a pair of soft warm (acceptable – his words) slippers on clearance and last but not least a pair of his favorite Avia sneakers half price on sale for $24 (his current ones we discovered had holes this past weekend *rolls eyes*).

It was actually quite painless and enjoyable to go shopping today with him.

Thank goodness.


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