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Thursday, January 22, 2015

BAKED CHIMICHANGAS - A FAMILY FAVORITE

There was no school here on Martin Luther King day, so Wyatt came over to spend the day with his Papa Bob.  They went over to the church parking lot to try to get the bottle-rocket car they had built to travel for more than 10 feet by using vinegar and baking soda as fuel.  But, alas, no success again!  However, an engineer and an inquisitive kid are not deterred -- they are out in the garage again dreaming up something else.

My assignment ----- lunch!  Since Wyatt is growing outrageously fast and is always hungry, I try to fix something half-way healthy and filling when he is here.  On this day it is Baked Chimichangas.  I don't remember where I got the recipe originally, but it has been a family favorite for years.
Brown one pound of hamburger, drain and add:
2 tablespoons of salsa (homemade or purchased)
Salt and pepper to taste.
Cook and stir; then spoon some of the mixture on center of each flour tortilla.  Add grated cheese.
 Fold edge closest to you over filling; fold both sides toward center; roll tortilla.  Arrange on cookie sheet, seam side down.  Melt 1/4 cup butter and brush each tortilla with butter.
Wyatt came in to help with what he calls "Butter Painting".
 Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes until hot, lightly browned, and slightly crisp.
Serve with more grated cheese, salsa, sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, and black olives.

I may be fooling myself, but these have to be healthier than deep-fried chimichangas -- I do know it is easier and less mess to bake them.

I'm joining the following:
The Dedicated House for Anything Blue Friday
Nancherrow for Fridays Unfolded
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
Confessions of a Plate Addict for The Scoop Tuesday
Green Willow Pond for What We Accomplished Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday

Thursday, January 15, 2015

THIS, THAT, AND THE OTHER ----

A post of randomness --
Image from Royal Gorge Bridge and Park Facebook page
The weather geniuses on local TV and on my smart phone tell me that we will have dry, sunshiny, and balmy (in the 60s) weather for the next six days.  We have had a rather long snap of cold, icy, snowy weather; so sunshine will be appreciated.  I'm encouraged that winter will return next week, however.  Guess I better take this opportunity to take my heavy coat to the cleaners!

Bob reminds me that it is two months until he and Wyatt plant the peas in the garden on St. Pat's Day.  That's a good thing as I only have about one cup of peas from last year's garden left in my freezer.  I'm saving those for the perfect chicken and biscuit casserole on a future, snowy evening.

After dropping my coat off at the cleaners today, I have the fun of picking up my favorite granddaughter, Caitlin, at the high school.  I love it when she needs a ride, and thinks of me.  As a busy senior, it is hard to fit in school work, a boyfriend, etc., etc., etc., and Grammy-time!  We still manage, however ---- and there is nothing better than to encapsulate a talkative teenager in a car, go to Sonic for something to drink, and get caught up on the news!
I'm going to miss her next year so much!!!!

You would think that after all of the Christmas goodies, I would be tired of sweets.  But, oh no, I think I'll make Turtle Cookie Bars this afternoon.  
Turtle Cookie Bars
I spied the recipe on The Shabby Creek Cottage blog, and now I can't stop thinking about them.

What's another calorie (or two---) when the sun is shining?


I'm joining the following:
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia for Inspire Me Monday
A Stroll Thru Life for Inspire Me Tuesday
Our Home Away From Home for Tuesdays At Our Home
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Imparting Grace for Grace at Home Thursday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

MOUNTAIN CAMPING

One of my goals in 2015 is to organize the 100-plus years of family pictures.  This seems to be my goal every year.  The problem is I get side-tracked, and never seem to accomplish completely the task.  I love finding the tie that binds our generations together, and get so involved that nothing gets really organized!  Here's an example of how my brain is all over the place when I am trying to organize those photos:

My great-grandparents loved to go camping in the mountains every chance they had.  
 I suppose camping in those days was not much different from living at home -- no indoor plumbing and cooking on a wood stove.  However, it was much cooler in the summer mountains than on the hot, arid Colorado plains.

My mother was raised by these grandparents, so she was well acquainted with camping.  She never complained about anything; but I don't think she was as enthused about it as my dad.  He was raised in a family of sheep and cattle ranchers, so he knew about camping-out as a part of rigorous labor.  But, he also enjoyed going camping as a social activity and showing off to friends and their families his considerable culinary skills on an open fire.
Fancy duds for social camping in the 1940s.  My mother on the left in both pictures; my dad on the right in first picture.
I reluctantly was taken along on these social excursions to the mountains.  On one particular trip, I must have been a really obnoxious 11-year-old complaining about the lack of comfort and facilities.  After a couple days of my complaining, Mother packed me up into the car and drove into Leadville, Colorado.  She secured me a room at the venerable Vendome Hotel; generously tipped the desk clerk; arranged for room service; gave me a sack of coins to play the pinball machine in the lobby; LEFT ME; and she went back to the camp site for the remaining two days.  I had a wonderful time alone and remember every detail of that corner room on the second floor.  Today she probably would be arrested for abandonment; but she taught me a very important survival skill ---- a nice hotel trumps a dirty camp site any day!!

  In 1967, Bob and I were planning a road trip to Saskatchewan, Canada.  He wanted to camp out in Prince Albert National Park.  I thought, "OK, I'm a married adult, I can compromise, I can do this."  Being the smart man that he is -- before we left home, he outfitted the back end of our Chevy Suburban with a mattress.  Since I was in the first trimester of a pregnancy, all I wanted to do was sleep anyway!  
Don't we look like we're having fun?  I hope I didn't complain too much, but that is the only time he has suggested we go camping out in the wild in the 56 years of our marriage.

BUT, we sure have stayed at a bunch of nice hotels over the years.  Have you ever stayed at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs or the Brown Palace Hotel in Denver?  Now, that's my idea of mountain camping!

I'm joining the following:
Coastal Charm for Show and Share Tuesday
Kathe With An E for You're Gonna Love It Tuesday
A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
Be Different Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays

Friday, January 2, 2015

A PRESENT TO US FROM US

HAPPY BIRTHDAYS, MERRY CHRISTMAS TO US!

Years ago, we stopped buying each other gifts on special occasions.  We find more joy in buying together something special.  Our birthdays are in November and December, so in some years we splurge on a three-in-one gift.

This year we bought a new/old hand-knotted wool rug.
This year I suppose it was more of a present for me than Bob, as I have had my eye on it in a local antique store forever!    
We've lived with it for almost two months now, and are thrilled with the way it brightens up our living room.  The colors are luscious!

I'm joining the following:
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks
Be Different Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Coastal Charm for Tuesday Show and Share
A Stroll Thru Life for Inspire Me Tuesday
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday

Monday, December 29, 2014

THE CRUD, ETC.

Well, I haven't been out of the house since going to church on Christmas Eve.
I have what is known in our family as "the crud" - really nothing more than a nasty cold with runny nose and a cough.
But, I haven't moved out of my chair for three days.

Bob just brought in the Christmas tubs - I think he is telling me that it is time to get on with it.  I literately just turned around from my computer and took this picture - that's how much energy I have.  You know -- what's a blog post without a picture?

Christmas was good -- everyone was here - I cooked, and cooked some more!


When did boys start wearing culottes disguised as basketball shorts?  
At any rate, I was informed they were b-ball shorts!!!!

I'll be back when Christmas has been cleared away (but not from my heart!).

PS:  Guess I need to make a new header for the blog, also.  Tomorrow, tomorrow!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

JOYOUS SEASON



I will be taking a little break from the blog world so that I may concentrate on
  the celebration of the birth of our Savior.
It is time for me to focus on what is really important -- our faith and our family.

May you also experience the joy and hope of this special season.

Sally

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

THE YEAR OF THE PLAID!

Did you think I would let the season go by without a post on plaid for Christmas?  For years I've loved plaid, especially at Christmas.  I can't believe how much plaid I have seen on pinterest and the blogs this year --- I'm finally trendy!!!  I know, however, that next year I'll probably be out of style again; but that won't stop me from pulling out the plaid during the month of December 2015.  It's just part of the Christmas season to me.
"Tartan" Christmas quilt I made in 1988 

Here are some pictures of the plaid that has exploded at our house this year ------







Christmas card I made in 2011
I'll always believe in plaid!

I'm joining the following:
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks

Saturday, December 13, 2014

FROSTY FRUIT

 Every year about two weeks before Christmas, I make this Frosty Fruit recipe.  It's great to have in the freezer to pull out during this busy season when you want a "not-so-sweet treat".  My family likes it as a side dish, a dessert, a snack, or even for breakfast.
Here's the easy and fast recipe:

FROSTY FRUIT

1 12 oz. can frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 12 oz. can frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
1 16 oz. package frozen strawberries, thawed
1 40 oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
6 bananas, chopped
5 cups water
Mix well in large bowl, and set in freezer until slushy.
Pour into 9 oz. plastic cups and cover with plastic wrap.  Freeze solid.
Partially thaw (slushy and fruit still frozen) before serving.  Makes about 20 cups.
P.S.:  Gift giving spanning the generations -- that adorable Santa in the background was made by my grand daughter when she was in pre-school 15 years ago; and the pedestal wooden stand was made by my father in his high school wood-shop class 84 years ago as a gift to his mother.

I'm joining the following:

Art and Sand for a Sweet and Simple Christmas
Be Different and Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays
Boogie Board Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia for Inspire Me Monday
Our Home Away from Home for Tuesdays at our Home
Coastal Charm for Show and Share Tuesday
A Stroll Thru Life for Inspire Me Tuesday

Thursday, December 11, 2014

VINTAGE CHRISTMAS

Today is Vintage Christmas day at
Have A Daily Cup.  Since practically everything around here is vintage (including us), I wasn't going to miss this opportunity to celebrate with Jann.  Be sure to hop over and visit her delightful blog!

 In my last post I said I wasn't the glitzy, sparkly, glamour type --- well, I lied as I do have a fondness for shiny, vintage ornaments.
Ever since I inherited my parent's and grandmother's Christmas stuff in the 1990s, I have been searching for more vintage ornaments.  I've been keeping the collection under control, however, by buying only those priced way under the current market value.  My search centers on the balls with the cardboard hangers from WW II.  In all of the years I have only found three.  In our part of the country, they must not have been into conserving metal for the war effort; because they sure are elusive!!
In addition, I'm attracted to the vintage tree toppers and bottle brush trees.
I inherited several of the bottle brush trees from my grandmother when I received her collection of cardboard houses.  I love this little church and its tiny bottle brush tree.
We also like the old Christmas postcards which we display on this vintage grocery store receipt rack along with some pictures of our Christmases Past.
Look at this picture of our children taken 40 Christmases ago.  Santa has a death grip on Jenni, and Mike was ready to also grab her if she tried to escape.  Later in the day, we discovered that Jenni had come down with the chicken pox -- we have often wondered if we were responsible for Santa later coming down with the pox.  Plus, did he then have shingles later in life?  He looks a little scared, doesn't he?  I feel guilty........but at the moment we didn't know.
I guess you could consider some of our stockings vintage -- I knitted the first one for Bob before our first Christmas in 1958.
Another touch of vintage - my two grandmothers' and my mother's rolling pins.

I'm joining the following:
Have a Daily Cup for Vintage Christmas Thursday
From My Front Porch to Yours for Treasure Hunt Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Nancherrow for Fridays Unfolded
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks

Monday, December 8, 2014

RUSTIC CHRISTMAS

Even though I enjoy pretty dishes; I'm just not the glitzy, sparkly, glamour type.  I have scads of silver wedding dishes (1958 variety) which have been stored under the guest bed for 40 years; plus a lot of crystal which very occasionally sees the light of day.
But give me a homemade hutch and a cupboard salvaged 
from a farm out-building ----
combine it with 19th century brown transferware ---
and a candle holder made from a farm machinery part ---
then add natural Christmas decorations ---

And, I'm happy!!!

I'm joining the following:
Thoughts from Alice for a Rustic Christmas Tuesday
Coastal Charm for Tuesday Show and Share
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Savvy Southern Style for WOW Us Wednesdays

Monday, December 1, 2014

IT'S A START!

I've made a start on Christmas Decorating Week.  
The first thing I did was to put some Christmas cheer in one of our tool boxes on the entry table.
In a desire to avoid some of my week-long mess, we moved in the tubs of stuff and instead of stacking them as usual in the dining room; we put them in the computer room.  We eat every meal in our dining room and it is right by the front door; so for a week it WAS always a mess and drove me crazy.  Duh -- move the stuff to a room where we can close the door!!  How come it took me 17 years to figure that out?
One of the things I like to do right after Thanksgiving is get out the Nativity set. 
 We actually have two sets -- we have an unbreakable one that the kids have always rearranged and played with. And then, we have this very special one. 
In 1968, Bob was gone on a business trip right before Christmas; and I was at home with a young baby.  He returned with my Christmas present -- Mary and baby Jesus -- a start of a Hummel nativity set.
  I was thrilled, and then over the last 46 years when finances and availability allowed;  one at a time he added Joseph, the shepherds, animals, the angel, and the three wise men.  It is one of my most cherished possessions, and always a reminder of why we celebrate Christmas.
In the next few days, I'll get out the other set.  As old as my grand kids are now, I will still discover after one of their visits animals laying on their sides taking naps or missing all together.  
But they know that the Hummels are Grammy's to rearrange!!!

Must get busy -- two big trees with 100s of ornaments to hang on each tree plus lots of vignettes to do.  It's just the start of things to come.

I'm joining the following:
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia for Inspire Me Monday
Coastal Charm for Show and Share Tuesday
Kathe With An E for You've Gonna Love It Tuesday
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Green Willow Pond for What We Accomplished Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
Imparting Grace for Grace at Home Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Nancherrow for Fridays Unfolded
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks
Be Different Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
The Dedicated House for Make It Pretty Monday

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW ---

At our church's Thanksgiving dinner a couple of Sundays ago, we sang "The Doxology" as a blessing for our food.


Growing up and into our adulthood, this praise was sung every Sunday during church service.  It seems we never sing it anymore, which makes me sad.
It is such a beautiful melody dating back to the 1500s with lyrics from the 1600s.
So, it was with joy that at our dinner we all joined hands, and all 100 people sang this to bless our food.  Everyone seemed to pull the words from out of their memory bank, singing harmony and without accompaniment.  It was beautiful.
The words say it all, "Praise God, from whom all blessings flow."

May you have a blessed, thankful, and joyful Thanksgiving.